Archive | September 23rd, 2015

US-trained militants give up arms to Nusra right after entering Syria

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Press TV 

“Moderate” militants trained by the US military have handed over their weapons to terrorists upon entry into Syria.

Militants with Division 30, who had just graduated from a US-led military training program in Turkey, surrendered to the al-Qaeda-affiliated Jabhat al-Nusra in Syria, The Telegraph reported on Monday, quoting a number of sources.

The militants are said to have given up all their guns and equipment immediately after entry into Syria.

“A strong slap for America… the new group from Division 30 that entered yesterday hands over all of its weapons to Jabhat al-Nusra after being granted safe passage,” read a statement on Twitter by a man calling himself Abu Fahd al-Tunisi, a member of Nusra. “They handed over a very large amount of ammunition and medium weaponry and a number of pick-ups.”

The division’s commander, Anas Ibrahim Obaid, explained to the terrorists that he had tricked the US military to get guns, according to Abu Khattab al-Maqdisi, another Nusra member.

“He promised to issue a statement… repudiating Division 30, the coalition, and those who trained him,” he tweeted. “And he also gave a large amount of weapons to Jabhat al-Nusra.”

The division entered Syria with “12 four-wheel vehicles equipped with machine guns and ammunition” a day earlier, said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

The entry of the 70 men was also confirmed by the US Central Command after they graduated from the Pentagon’s “train and equip” program.

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‘West crying for refugees with one eye, aiming gun with the other’


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Posted by: Sammi Ibrahem,Sr


In a rare interview with Russian media outlets, RT among them, Syrian leader Bashar Assad spoke about global and domestic terrorism threats, the need for a united front against jihadism, Western propaganda about the refugee crisis and ways to bring peace to his war-torn nation.

Question 1:Mr. President, thank you from the Russian media, from RT, from Rossiyskaya Gazeta, Channel 1, Russia 24, RIA Novosti, and NTV channel, for giving us all the opportunity to talk to you during this very critical phase of the crisis in Syria, where there are many questions that need to be addressed on where exactly the political process to achieve peace in Syria is heading, what’s the latest developments on the fight against ISIL, and the status of the Russian and Syrian partnership, and of course the enormous exodus of Syrian refugees that has been dominating headlines in Europe.

Now, the crisis in Syria is entering its fifth year. You have defied all predictions by Western leaders that you would be ousted imminently, and continue to serve today as the President of the Syrian Arab Republic. Now, there has been a lot of speculation recently caused by reports that officials from your government met with officials from your adversary Saudi Arabia that caused speculation that the political process in Syria has entered a new phase, but then statements from Saudi Arabia that continue to insist on your departure suggest that in fact very little has changed despite the grave threat that groups like ISIL pose far beyond Syria’s borders.

So, what is your position on the political process? How do you feel about power sharing and working with those groups in the opposition that continue to say publically that there can be no political solution in Syria unless that includes your immediate departure? Have they sent you any signal that they are willing to team up with you and your government? In addition to that, since the beginning of the crisis in Syria, many of those groups were calling to you to carry out reforms and political change. But is such change even possible now under the current circumstances with the war and the ongoing spread of terror in Syria?

President Assad: Let me first divide this question. It’s a multi question in one question. The first part regarding the political process, since the beginning of the crisis we adopted the dialogue approach, and there were many rounds of dialogue between Syrians in Syria, in Moscow, and in Geneva. Actually, the only step that has been made or achieved was in Moscow 2, not in Geneva, not in Moscow 1, and actually it’s a partial step, it’s not a full step, and that’s natural because it’s a big crisis. You cannot achieve solutions in a few hours or a few days. It’s a step forward, and we are waiting for Moscow 3. I think we need to continue the dialogue between the Syrian entities, political entities or political currents, in parallel with fighting terrorism in order to achieve or reach a consensus about the future of Syria. So, that’s what we have to continue.

If I jump to the last part, because it’s related to this one, is it possible to achieve anything taking into consideration the prevalence of terrorism in Syria and in Iraq and in the region in general? We have to continue dialogue in order to reach the consensus as I said, but if you want to implement anything real, it’s impossible to do anything while you have people being killed, bloodletting hasn’t stopped, people feel insecure. Let’s say we sit together as Syrian political parties or powers and achieve a consensus regarding something in politics, in economy, in education, in health, in everything. How can we implement it if the priority of every single Syrian citizen is to be secure? So, we can achieve consensus, but we cannot implement unless we defeat the terrorism in Syria. We have to defeat terrorism, not only ISIS.

I’m talking about terrorism, because you have many organizations, mainly ISIS and al-Nusra that were announced as terrorist groups by the Security Council. So, this is regarding the political process. Sharing power, of course we already shared it with some part of the opposition that accepted to share it with us. A few years ago they joined the government. Although sharing power is related to the constitution, to the elections, mainly parliamentary elections, and of course representation of the Syrian people by those powers. But in spite of that, because of the crisis, we said let’s share it now, let’s do something, a step forward, no matter how effective.

Regarding the refugee crisis, I will say now that Western dealing in the Western propaganda recently, mainly during the last week, regardless of the accusation that those refugees are fleeing the Syrian government, but they call it regime, of course. Actually, it’s like the West now is crying for the refugees with one eye and aiming at them with a machinegun with the second one, because actually those refugees left Syria because of the terrorism, mainly because of the terrorists and because of the killing, and second because of the results of terrorism. When you have terrorism, and you have the destruction of the infrastructure, you won’t have the basic needs of living, so many people leave because of the terrorism and because they want to earn their living somewhere in this world.

So, the West is crying for them, and the West is supporting terrorists since the beginning of the crisis when it said that this was a peaceful uprising, when they said later it’s moderate opposition, and now they say there is terrorism like al-Nusra and ISIS, but because of the Syrian state or the Syrian regime or the Syrian president. So, as long as they follow this propaganda, they will have more refugees. So, it’s not about that Europe didn’t accept them or embrace them as refugees, it’s about not dealing with the cause. If you are worried about them, stop supporting terrorists. That’s what we think regarding the crisis. This is the core of the whole issue of refugees.

President Assad: As you know, we are at war with terrorism, and this terrorism is supported by foreign powers. It means that we are in a state of complete war. I believe that any society and any patriotic individuals, and any parties which truly belong to the people should unite when there is a war against an enemy; whether that enemy is in the form of domestic terrorism or foreign terrorism. If we ask any Syrian today about what they want, the first thing they would say is: we want security and safety for every person and every family.

So we, as political forces, whether inside or outside the government, should unite around what the Syrian people want. That means we should first unite against terrorism. That is logical and self-evident. That’s why I say that we have to unite now as political forces, or government, or as armed groups which fought against the government, in order to fight terrorism. This has actually happened.

There are forces fighting terrorism now alongside the Syrian state, which had previously fought against the Syrian state. We have made progress in this regard, but I would like to take this opportunity to call on all forces to unite against terrorism, because it is the way to achieve the political objectives which we, as Syrians, want through dialogue and political action.

Intervention: Concerning the Moscow-3 and Geneva-3 conferences; in your opinion, are there good prospects for them?

President Assad: The importance of Moscow-3 lies in the fact that it paves the way to Geneva-3, because the international sponsorship in Geneva was not neutral, while the Russian sponsorship is. It is not biased, and is based on international law and Security Council resolutions. Second, there are substantial differences around the ‘transitional body’ item in Geneva. Moscow-3 is required to solve these problems between the different Syrian parties; and when we reach Geneva-3, it is ensured that there is a Syrian consensus which would enable it to succeed. We believe that it is difficult for Geneva-3 to succeed unless Moscow-3 does. That’s why we support holding this round of negotiations in Moscow after preparations for the success of this round have been completed, particularly by the Russian officials.

Question 3: I would like to continue with the issue of international cooperation in order to solve the Syrian crisis. It’s clear that Iran, since solving the nuclear issue, will play a more active role in regional affairs. How would you evaluate recent Iranian initiatives on reaching a settlement for the situation in Syria? And, in general, what is the importance of Tehran’s support for you? Is there military support? And, if so, what form does it take?

President Assad: At present, there is no Iranian initiative. There are ideas or principles for an Iranian initiative based primarily on Syria’s sovereignty, the decisions of the Syrian people and on fighting terrorism. The relationship between Syria and Iran is an old one. It is over three-and-a-half decades old. There is an alliance based on a great degree of trust. That’s why we believe that the Iranian role is important. Iran supports Syria and the Syrian people. It stands with the Syrian state politically, economically and militarily. When we say militarily, it doesn’t mean – as claimed by some in the Western media – that Iran has sent an army or armed forces to Syria. That is not true. It sends us military equipment, and of course there is an exchange of military experts between Syria and Iran. This has always been the case, and it is natural for this cooperation to grow between the two countries in a state of war. Yes, Iranian support has been essential to support Syria in its steadfastness in this difficult and ferocious war.

Question 4: Concerning regional factors and proponents, you recently talked about security coordination with Cairo in fighting terrorism, and that you are in the same battle line in this regard. How is your relationship with Cairo today given that it hosts some opposition groups? Do you have a direct relationship, or perhaps through the Russian mediator, particularly in light of the strategic relations between Russia and Egypt. President Sisi has become a welcome guest in Moscow today.

President Assad: Relations between Syria and Egypt have not ceased to exist even over the past few years, and even when the president was Mohammed Morsi, who is a member of the terrorist Muslim Brotherhood organisation. Egyptian institutions insisted on maintaining a certain element of this relationship. First, because the Egyptian people are fully aware of what is happening in Syria, and second because the battle we are fighting is practically against the same enemy. This has now become clearer to everyone. Terrorism has spread in Libya, Egypt, Yemen, Syria, Iraq, in other Arab countries, and in some Muslim countries like Afghanistan, Pakistan and others. That’s why I can say that there is joint vision between us and the Egyptians; but our relationship exists now on a security level. There are no political relations. I mean, there are no contacts between the Syrian Foreign Ministry and the Egyptian Foreign Ministry, for instance. Contacts are done on a security level only. We understand the pressures that might be applied on Egypt or on both Syria and Egypt so that they don’t have a strong relationship. This relationship does not go, of course, through Moscow. As I said, this relationship has never ceased to exist, but we feel comfortable about improving relations between Russia and Egypt. At the same time, there is a good, strong and historical relation between Moscow and Damascus, so it is natural for Russia to feel comfortable for any positive development in relations between Syria and Egypt.

Question 5: Mr. President, allow me to go back to the question of fighting terrorism. How do you look at the idea of creating a region free of ISIS terrorists in the north of the country on the border with Turkey? In that context, what do you say about the indirect cooperation between the West and terrorist organizations like the al-Nusra Front and other extremist groups? And with whom are you willing to cooperate and fight against ISIS terrorists?

President Assad: To say that the border with Turkey should be free of terrorism means that terrorism is allowed in other regions. That is unacceptable. Terrorism should be eradicated everywhere; and we have been calling for three decades for an international coalition to fight terrorism. But as for Western cooperation with the al-Nusra Front, this is reality, because we know that Turkey supports al-Nusra and ISIS by providing them with arms, money and terrorist volunteers. And it is well-known that Turkey has close relations with the West. Erdogan and Davutoglu cannot make a single move without coordinating first with the United States and other Western countries. Al-Nusra and ISIS operate with such a force in the region under Western cover, because Western states have always believed that terrorism is a card they can pull from their pocket and use from time to time. Now, they want to use al-Nusra just against ISIS, maybe because ISIS is out of control one way or another. But that doesn’t mean they want to eradicate ISIS. Had they wanted to do so, they would have been able to do that. For us, ISIS, al-Nusra, and all similar organizations which carry weapons and kill civilians are extremist organizations.

But who we conduct dialogue with is a very important question. From the start we said that we engage in dialogue with any party, if that dialogue leads to degrading terrorism and consequently achieve stability. This naturally includes the political powers, but there are also armed groups with whom we conducted dialogue and reached agreement in troubled areas which have become quiet now. In other areas, these armed groups joined the Syrian Army and are fighting by its side, and some of their members became martyrs. So we talk to everyone except organizations I mentioned like ISIS, al-Nusra, and other similar ones for the simple reason that these organizations base their doctrine on terrorism. They are ideological organizations and are not simply opposed to the state, as is the case with a number of armed groups. Their doctrine is based on terrorism, and consequently dialogue with such organizations cannot lead to any real result. We should fight and eradicate them completely and talking to them is absolutely futile.

Intervention: When talking about regional partners, with whom are you prepared to cooperate in fighting terrorism?

President Assad: Certainly with friendly countries, particularly Russia and Iran. Also we are cooperating with Iraq because it faces the same type of terrorism. As for other countries, we have no veto on any country provided that it has the will to fight terrorism and not as they are doing in what is called “the international coalition” led by the United States. In fact, since this coalition started to operate, ISIS has been expanding. In other words, the coalition has failed and has no real impact on the ground. At the same time, countries like Turkey, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Western countries which provide cover for terrorism like France, the United States, or others, cannot fight terrorism. You cannot be with and against terrorism at the same time. But if these countries decide to change their policies and realize that terrorism is like a scorpion, if you put it in your pocket, it will sting you. If that happens, we have no objection to cooperating with all these countries, provided it is a real and not a fake coalition to fight terrorism.

Question 6: What is the Syrian army’s current condition? They’ve been fighting for over four years. Are they exhausted by the war, or become stronger as a result of engagement in military operations? And are there reserve forces to support them? I also have another important question: you said a large number of former adversaries have moved to your side and are fighting within the ranks of government forces. How many? And what is the extent of their help in the fight against extremist groups?

President Assad: Of course, war is bad. And any war is destructive, any war weakens any society and any army, no matter how strong or rich a country is. But things cannot be assessed this way. War is supposed to unite society against the enemy. The army becomes the most-important symbol for any society when there is aggression against the country. Society embraces the army, and provides it with all the necessary support, including human resources, volunteers, conscripts, in order to defend the homeland. At the same time, war provides a great deal of expertise to any armed forces practically and militarily. So, there are always positive and negative aspects. We cannot say that the army becomes weaker or stronger. But in return, this social embrace and support for the army provides it with volunteers. So, in answer to your question ‘are there reserves?’… yes, certainly, for without such reserves, the army wouldn’t have been able to stand for four-and-a-half years in a very tough war, particularly since the enemy we fight today has an unlimited supply of people. We have terrorist fighters from over 80 or 90 countries today, so our enemy is enjoying enormous support in various countries, from where people come here to fight alongside the terrorists. As for the army, it’s almost exclusively made of Syrians. So, we have reserve forces, and this is what enables us to carry on. There is also determination. We have reserves not only in terms of human power, but in will as well. We are more determined than ever before to fight and defend our country against terrorists. This is what led some fighters who used to fight against the state at the beginning for varying reasons, discovered they were wrong and decided to join the state. Now they are fighting battles along with the army, and some have actually joined as regular soldiers. Some have kept their weapons, but they are fighting in groups alongside the armed forces in different parts of Syria.

Question 7: Mr. President, Russia has been fighting terrorism for 20 years, and we have seen its different manifestations. It now seems you are fighting it head on. In general, the world is witnessing a new form of terrorism. In the regions occupied by ISIS, they are setting up courts and administrations, and there are reports that it intends to mint its own currency. They are constructing what looks like a state. This in itself might attract new supporters from different countries. Can you explain to us whom are you fighting? Is it a large group of terrorists or is it a new state which intends to radically redraw regional and global borders? What is ISIS today?

President Assad: Of course, the terrorist ISIS groups tried to give the semblance of a state, as you said, in order to attract more volunteers who live on the dreams of the past: that there was an Islamic state acting for the sake of religion. That ideal is unreal. It is deceptive. But no state can suddenly bring a new form to any society. The state should be the product of its society. It should be the natural evolution of that society, to express it. In the end, a state should be a projection of its society. You cannot bring about a state which has a different form and implant it in a society. Here we ask the question: does ISIS, or what they call ‘Islamic State’, have any semblance to Syrian society? Certainly not.

Of course we have terrorist groups, but they are not an expression of society. In Russia, you have terrorist groups today, but they do not project Russian society, nor do they have any semblance to the open and diverse Russian society. That’s why if they tried to mint a currency or have stamps or passports, or have all these forms which indicate the existence of a state, it doesn’t mean they actually exist as a state; first because they are different from the people and, second, because people in those regions flee towards the real state, the Syrian state, the national state. Sometimes they fight them too. A very small minority believes these lies. They are certainly not a state, they are a terrorist group. But if we want to ask about who they are, let’s speak frankly: They are the third phase of the political or ideological poisons produced by the West, aimed at achieving political objectives. The first phase was the Muslim Brotherhood at the turn of the last century. The second phase was al-Qaeda in Afghanistan in order to fight the Soviet Union. And the third phase is ISIS, the al-Nusra Front and these groups. Who are ISIS? And who are these groups? They are simply extremist products of the West.

Question 8: Mr. President, at the beginning of the Syrian crisis, the Kurdish issue started to be discussed more often. Previously, Damascus was severely criticized because of its position towards the Kurdish minority. But now, practically, in some areas, Kurdish formations are your allies in the fight against ISIS. Do you have a specific position towards who the Kurds are to you and who you are to them?

President Assad: First, you cannot say there was a certain state policy concerning the Kurds. A state cannot discriminate between members of its population; otherwise, it creates division in the country. If we had been discriminating between different components of society, the majority of these components wouldn’t have supported the state now, and the country would have disintegrated from the very beginning. For us, the Kurds are part of the Syrian fabric. They are not foreigners – they live in this region like the Arabs, Circassians, Armenians and many other ethnicities and sects who’ve been living in Syria for many centuries. It’s not known when some of them came to this region. Without these groups, there wouldn’t have been a homogenous Syria. So, are they our allies today? No, they are patriotic people. But on the other hand, you cannot put all the Kurds in one category. Like any other Syrian component, there are different currents among them. They belong to different parties. There are those on the left and those on the right. There are tribes, and there are different groups. So, it is not objective to talk about the Kurds as one mass.

There are certain Kurdish demands expressed by some parties, but there are no Kurdish demands for the Kurds. There are Kurds who are integrated fully into society; and I would like to stress that they are not allies at this stage, as some people would like to show. I would like to stress that they are not just allies at this stage, as some suggest. There are many fallen Kurdish soldiers who fought with the army, which means they are an integral part of society. But there are parties which had certain demands, and we addressed some at the beginning of the crisis. There are other demands which have nothing to do with the state, and which the state cannot address. There are things which would relate to the entire population, to the constitution, and the people should endorse these demands before a decision can be taken by the state. In any case, anything proposed should be in the national framework. That’s why I say that we are with the Kurds, and with other components, all of us in alliance to fight terrorism.

This is what I talked about a while ago: that we should unite in order to fight ISIS. After we defeat ISIS, al-Nusra and the terrorists, the Kurdish demands expressed by certain parties can be discussed nationally. There’s no problem with that, we do not have a veto on any demand as long as it is within the framework of Syria’s unity and the unity of the Syrian people and territory, fighting terrorism, Syrian diversity, and the freedom of this diversity in its ethnic, national, sectarian, and religious sense.

Question 9: Mr. President, you partially answered this question, but I would like a more-precise answer, because some Kurdish forces in Syria call for amending the constitution. For instance, setting up a local administration and moving towards autonomy in the north. These statements are becoming more frequent now that the Kurds are fighting ISIS with a certain degree of success. Do you agree with such statements that the Kurds can bet on some kind of gratitude? Is it up for discussion?

President Assad: When we defend our country, we do not ask people to thank us. It is our natural duty to defend our country. If they deserve thanks, then every Syrian citizen defending their country deserves as much. But I believe that defending one’s country is a duty, and when you carry out your duty, you don’t need thanks. But what you have said is related to the Syrian constitution. Today, if you want to change the existing structure in your country, in Russia for instance, let’s say to redraw the borders of the republics, or give one republic powers different to those given to other republics – this has nothing to do with the president or the government. This has to do with the constitution.

The president does not own the constitution and the government does not own the constitution. Only the people own the constitution, and consequently changing the constitution means national dialogue. For us, we don’t have a problem with any demand. As a state, we do not have any objection to these issues as long as they do not infringe upon Syria’s unity and diversity and the freedom of its citizens.

But if there are certain groups or sections in Syria which have certain demands, these demands should be in the national framework, and in dialogue with the Syrian political forces. When the Syrian people agree on taking steps of this kind, which have to do with federalism, autonomy, decentralization or changing the whole political system, this needs to be agreed upon by the Syrian people, and consequently amending the constitution. This is why these groups need to convince the Syrian people of their proposals. In that respect, they are not in dialogue with the state, but rather with the people. When the Syrian people decide to move in a certain direction, and to approve a certain step, we will naturally approve it.

Question 10: Now, the U.S.-led coalition has been carrying out airstrikes on Syrian territory for about one year on the same areas that the Syrian Air Force is also striking ISIL targets, yet there hasn’t been a single incident of the U.S.-led coalition and the Syrian Air Force activity clashing with one another. Is there any direct or indirect coordination between your government and the U.S. coalition in the fight against ISIL?

President Assad: You’d be surprised if I say no. I can tell you that my answer will be not realistic, to say now, while we are fighting the same, let’s say enemy, while we’re attacking the same target in the same area without any coordination and at the same time without any conflict. And actually this is strange, but this is reality. There’s not a single coordination or contact between the Syrian government and the United States government or between the Syrian army and the U.S. army. This is because they cannot confess, they cannot accept the reality that we are the only power fighting ISIS on the ground. For them, maybe, if they deal or cooperate with the Syrian Army, this is like a recognition of our effectiveness in fighting ISIS. This is part of the willful blindness of the U.S. administration, unfortunately.

Question 11: So not event indirectly though, for example the Kurds? Because we know the U.S. is working with the Kurds, and the Kurds have some contacts with the Syrian government. So, not even any indirect coordination?

President Assad: Not even any third party, including the Iraqis, because before they started the attacks, they let us know through the Iraqis. Since then, not a single message or contact through any other party.

Question 12: OK, so just a little bit further than that. You’ve lived in the West, and you, at one time, moved in some of those circles with some Western leaders that since the beginning of the crisis have been backing armed groups who are fighting to see you overthrown. How do you feel about one day working again with those very same Western leaders, perhaps shaking hands with them? Would you ever be able to trust them again?

President Assad: First, it’s not a personal relation; it’s a relation between states, and when you talk about relation between states, you don’t talk about trust; you talk about mechanism. So, trust is a very personal thing you cannot depend on in political relations between, let’s say, people. I mean, you are responsible for, for example in Syria, for 23 million, and let’s say in another country for tens of millions. You cannot put the fate of those tens of millions or maybe hundreds of millions on the trust of a single person, or two persons in two countries. So, there must be a mechanism. When you have a mechanism, you can talk about trust in a different way, not a personal way. This is first.

Second, the main mission of any politician, or any government, president, prime minister, it doesn’t matter, is to work for the interest of his people and the interest of his country. If any meeting or any handshaking with anyone in the world will bring benefit to the Syrian people, I have to do it, whether I like it or not. So, it’s not about me, I accept it or I like it or whatever; it’s about what the added value of this step that you’re going to take. So yes, we are ready whenever there’s the interest of the Syrians. I will do it, whatever it is.

Question 13: Regarding alliances in the fight against terrorism and ISIS, President Putin called for a regional alliance to fight the so-called ‘Islamic State’; and the recent visits of Arab officials to Moscow fall into that context, but Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem said that would need a miracle. We are talking here about security coordination, as described by Damascus, with the governments of Jordan, Turkey and Saudi Arabia. How do you envisage that alliance? Will it achieve any results, in your opinion? You said that any relationship is based on interests, so are you willing to coordinate with these countries, and what is the truth behind the meetings held between Syrian, and maybe Saudi, officials as reported by the media?

President Assad: As for fighting terrorism, this is a big and comprehensive issue which includes cultural and economic aspects. It obviously has security and military aspects as well. In terms of prevention, all the other aspects are more important than the security and military ones, but today, in the reality we now live in terms of fighting terrorism, we are not facing terrorist groups, we are facing terrorist armies equipped with light, medium and heavy weaponry. They have billions of dollars to recruit volunteers. The military and security aspects should be given priority at this stage. So, we think this alliance should act in different areas, but to fight on the ground first. Naturally, this alliance should consist of states which believe in fighting terrorism and believe that their natural position should be against terrorism.

In the current state of affairs, the person supporting terrorism cannot be the same person fighting terrorism. This is what these states are doing now. Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Jordan, who pretend to be part of a coalition against terrorism in northern Syria, actually support terrorism in the south, the north and the north-west, virtually in the same regions in which they are supposed to be fighting terrorism. Once again I say that, within the framework of public interest, if these states decide to go back to the right position, to return to their senses and fight terrorism, naturally we will accept and cooperate with them and with others. We do not have a veto and we do not stick to the past. Politics change all the time. It might change from bad to good, and the ally might become an adversary, and the adversary an ally. This is normal. When they fight against terrorism, we will cooperate with them.

Question 14: Mr. President, there is a huge wave of refugees, largely from Syria, going to Europe. Some say these people are practically lost to Syria. They are deeply unhappy with the Syrian authorities because they haven’t been able to protect them and they’ve had to leave their homes. How do you view those people? Do you see them as part of the Syrian electorate in the future? Do you expect them to return? And the second question has to do with the European sense of guilt about the displacement happening now. Do you think that Europe should feel guilty?

President Assad: Any person who leaves Syria constitutes a loss to the homeland, to be sure, regardless of the position or capabilities of that person. This, of course, does not include terrorists. It includes all citizens in general with the exception of terrorists. So, yes, there is a great loss as a result of emigration. You raised a question on elections. Last year, we had a presidential election in Syria, and there were many refugees in different countries, particularly in Lebanon. According to Western propaganda, they had fled the state, the oppression of the state and the killing of the state, and they are supposed to be enemies of the state. But the surprise for Westerners was that most of them voted for the president who is supposed to be killing them. That was a great blow to Western propaganda. Of course, voting has certain conditions. There should be an embassy, and to have the custodianship of the Syrian state in the voting process. That depends on relations between the states. Many countries have severed relations with Syria and closed Syrian embassies, and consequently Syrian citizens cannot vote in those countries. They have to go to other countries where ballot boxes are installed, and that did happen last year.

As for Europe, of course it’s guilty. Today, Europe is trying to say that Europe feels guilty because it hasn’t given money or hasn’t allowed these people to immigrate legally, and that’s why they came across the sea and drowned. We are sad for every innocent victim, but is the victim who drowns in the sea dearer to us than the victim killed in Syria? Are they dearer than innocent people whose heads are cut off by terrorists? Can you feel sad for a child’s death in the sea and not for thousands of children who have been killed by the terrorists in Syria? And also for men, women, and the elderly? These European double standards are no longer acceptable. They have been flagrantly exposed. It doesn’t make sense to feel sad for the death of certain people and not for deaths of others. The principles are the same. So Europe is responsible because it supported terrorism, as I said a short while ago, and is still supporting terrorism and providing cover for them. It still calls them ‘moderate’ and categorizes them into groups, even though all these groups in Syria are extremists.

Question 15: If you don’t mind, I would like to go back to the question about Syria’s political future. Mr. President, your opponents, whether fighting against the authorities with weapons or your political opponents, still insist that one of the most-important conditions for peace is your departure from political life and as president. What do you think about that – as president and as a Syrian citizen? Are you theoretically prepared for that if you feel it’s necessary?

President Assad: In addition to what you say, Western propaganda has, from the very beginning, been about the cause of the problem being the president. Why? Because they want to portray the whole problem in Syria lies in one individual; and consequently the natural reaction for many people is that, if the problem lies in one individual, that individual should not be more important than the entire homeland. So let that individual go and things will be alright. That’s how they oversimplify things in the West. What’s happening in Syria, in this regard, is similar to what happened in your case. Notice what happened in the Western media since the coup in Ukraine. What happened? President Putin was transformed from a friend of the West to a foe and, yet again, he was characterized as a tsar. He is portrayed as a dictator suppressing opposition in Russia, and that he came to power through undemocratic means, despite the fact that he was elected in democratic elections, and the West itself acknowledged that the elections were democratic. Now, it is no longer democratic. This is Western propaganda. They say that if the president went things will get better. What does that mean, practically? For the West, it means that as long as you are there, we will continue to support terrorism, because the Western principle followed now in Syria and Russia and other countries is changing presidents, changing states, or what they call bringing regimes down. Why? Because they do not accept partners and do not accept independent states. What is their problem with Russia? What is their problem with Syria?  What is their problem with Iran? They are all independent countries. They want a certain individual to go and be replaced by someone who acts in their interests and not in the interest of his country. For us, the president comes through the people and through elections and, if he goes, he goes through the people. He doesn’t go as a result of an American decision, a Security Council decision, the Geneva conference or the Geneva communiqué. If the people want him to stay, he should stay; and if the people reject him, he should leave immediately. This is the principle according to which I look at this issue.

Question 16: Military operations have been ongoing for more than four years. It’s likely that you analyze things and review matters often. In your opinion, was there a crucial juncture when you realized war was unavoidable? And who initiated that war machinery? The influence of Washington or your Middle East neighbours? Or were there mistakes on your part? Are there things you regret? And if you had the opportunity to go back, would you change them?

President Assad: In every state, there are mistakes, and mistakes might be made every day, but these mistakes do not constitute a crucial juncture because they are always there. So what is it that makes these mistakes suddenly lead to the situation we are living in Syria today? It doesn’t make sense. You might be surprised if I tell that the crucial juncture in what happened in Syria is something that many people wouldn’t even think of. It was the Iraq war in 2003, when the United States invaded Iraq. We were strongly opposed to that invasion, because we knew that things were moving in the direction of dividing societies and creating unrest. And we are Iraq’s neighbours. At that time, we saw that the war would turn Iraq into a sectarian country; into a society divided against itself. To the west of Syria there is another sectarian country – Lebanon. We are in the middle. We knew well that we would be affected. Consequently, the beginning of the Syrian crisis, or what happened in the beginning, was the natural result of that war and the sectarian situation in Iraq, part of which moved to Syria, and it was easy for them to incite some Syrian groups on sectarian grounds.

The second point, which might be less crucial, is that when the West adopted terrorism officially in Afghanistan in the early 1980s and called terrorists at that time ‘freedom fighters’, and then in 2006 when Islamic State appeared in Iraq under American sponsorship and they didn’t fight it. All these things together created the conditions for the unrest with Western support and Gulf money, particularly form Qatar and Saudi Arabia, and with Turkish logistic support, particularly since President Erdogan belongs intellectually to the Muslim Brotherhood. Consequently, he believes that, if the situation changed in Syria, Egypt, and Iraq, it means the creation of a new sultanate; not an Ottoman sultanate this time, but a sultanate for the Brotherhood extending from the Atlantic to the Mediterranean and ruled by Erdogan. All these factors together brought things to what we have today. Once again, I say that there were mistakes, and mistakes always create gaps and weak points, but they are not sufficient to cause that alone, and they do not justify what happened. And if these gaps and weak points are the cause, why didn’t they lead to revolutions in the Gulf states – particularly in Saudi Arabia which doesn’t know anything about democracy? The answer is self-evident, I believe.

Mr. President, thank you for giving us the time and for your detailed answers to our questions.

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US and I$raHell Desperate to Keep Russia from Aiding in Fight Against “ISIS” in Syria


by Scott Creighton

The United States and Israel are really worried about Russia’s increasing involvement in Syria’s fight against the destabilization campaign in their country known as “ISIS”

To that end, Sec. of State John Kerry made a not-so-veiled threat against the civilian population in the country if Russia refuses to back out.

“If you don’t leave, we’ll kill and displace even more civilians” was the general gist of his message to Russia the other day. It was eerily similar to a message delivered by Killary Clinton to Gadhafi when she was running the mergers and acquisitions department of US foreign policy on behalf of global financial interests.

In an interview with Italian newspaper La Stampa, Kerry said he had told Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov the United States was worried by Moscow’s military backing for Assad in Syria’s civil war, now in its fifth year.

These actions could provoke a further escalation of the conflict and lead to the loss of more innocent lives, increasing the flow of refugees and risking a confrontation with the anti-ISIS (Islamic State) coalition operating in Syria,” Kerry said. Reuters

According to Reuters, Israel delivered a similar message to Russian leaders this week.

Wait a minute. I thought we were fighting “ISIS” in Syria and Iraq? Now I’m confused.

The United States is welcoming Britain’s bombing of “ISIS” and France’s bombing of “ISIS” targets. So why would they object to Russia lending a hand to the new Coalition of the Willing? Russia is by far a military superior to both of those countries and they represent the opposite end of the political spectrum so you would imagine bringing them in to fight “the terrorists” would do nothing more than help them end the conflict faster WHILE giving in credibility on the world stage.

But instead… the US and Israel are demanding Russia step back and take no action in Syria and as they make that demand, apparently they are threatening more violence will be directed at “innocent civilians” if they don’t.

What does that tell you? What does that tell ANY RATIONAL HUMAN BEING about this “ISIS” fabrication (that just happens to run around with US weapons, on US heavy equipment, fighting a target the US has wanted out of power for decades? What does that tell you?

What it tells me is the US and Israel are terrified that if Russia does put advisers on the ground or they have a Russian pilot flying a Russian MIG or something in Syrian airspace and they are shot and killed by US or Israeli forces… things could get real bad real quick in the region.

You see, you can get your Dutch co-conspirators to fabricate a report on a downed Malaysian Airlines flight from Ukraine all day long, but if someone were to take out a Russian service member with US or Israeli weapons, you’re not going to have Dutch and French authorities to help white-wash the official reports. And then you are going to have Russia with all the justification they need to roll into Syria and put an end to the plans for Greater Kurdistan real quick.

No, they aren’t looking to light up WWIII. They aren’t that dumb.

But they damn sure don’t want to have to worry about trying to figure out who’s in the cockpit of a fighter jet Russia sold to Assad.

And they certainly don’t want their terrorist destabilization mercs killing a couple Russian military contractors giving the Great Bear all the justification they need to march ten thousand troops into the middle of the country to put an end to our regime change operation.

It’s hard to tell what Putin and Russia will do at this point. Everything seems to be indicating they are slowly moving toward a “boots on the ground” operation in Syria. Some might say “too slowly”

One thing is for sure though: it’s nothing these days for our illustrious leaders to openly threaten civilian populations in broad daylight with no repercussions at all. It’s sad when you think about it but apparently it’s all we got in terms of foreign policy these days. Terrorists, false flags and open threats of violence.

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Around 200 masked men storm Kharkov city hall in Eastern Ukraine



© slava.mavrichev / Facebook
RT – September 23, 2015

At least 200 people wearing camouflage and masks stormed the local administration building in the city of Kharkov, eastern Ukraine, local media said. The perpetrators are alleged to be members of the radical Azov battalion.

The masked men reportedly clashed with police and security forces at the city’s administration building. Those who have entered the building have also reportedly used tear gas, the Ukrainian 112 channel is saying.

The masked activists were seen holding flags with the insignia of the radical Azov Battalion, which is accused of committing numerous human rights violations in Eastern Ukraine, according to international watchdogs.

“There have been several small clashes between police and people in balaclavas. A few minutes ago somebody let off tear gas. The entrance to the city council is surrounded by a tight police cordon,” a journalist at the scene, from the 112 channel reported.

Earlier, at least 50 people wearing camouflage and balaclavas had taken part in a protest in front of the residence of the local politician, Mikhail Dobkin, who represents the ‘Opposition Bloc’ political party, which wants to find a peaceful solution to the current crisis in Ukraine. The masked men had not set out any demands. However, they were reported to have stated their aim was to “to throw Dobkin out of the city and not to let Kernes become Kharkov’s mayor,” according to the 112 channel.

Gennady Kernes has been the mayor of Kharkov since March 2010. Before the coup in Ukraine, he had been a strong supporter of President Viktor Yanokovich. However, he subsequently switched sides and has backed the new Ukrainian government in order to keep his position.

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Former Guantanamo detainee facing possibility of ‘utterly baseless’ charges in Morocco


Younous Chekkouri, who was released from Guantanamo last week, is facing the possibility of charges in Morocco that his lawyer has described as ‘utterly baseless’.

The prosecution in Morocco today announced that Younous – who has been held in detention since his release last week – is facing the possibility of charges of ‘attempts to disrupt the security of the country’. A judge will decide in two weeks whether to formally charge him. Meanwhile he has been placed in ‘provisional detention’ in Salé without bail.

Younous, 47, was cleared by the US government in 2010 – a process involving unanimous agreement by six federal agencies including the Departments of State and Defense and the CIA and FBI. He was never charged with a crime. His petition for habeas corpus was litigated through to a hearing, and saw the US government drop almost every allegation it had originally made against Younous.

Cori Crider, Younous’ attorney and director at Reprieve, said: “Younous facing charges is nothing short of an absolute disgrace. The US government, responsible for his being in this position in the first place, saw fit to clear him for release from Guantanamo following an exhaustive review. They never charged him with a crime and indeed they dropped almost every one of the ridiculous allegations they ever made against him while his case was being litigated in federal court. Any charges the Moroccan prosecutors are attempting to lay at Younous’ door are utterly baseless and must be revoked at once. Younous Chekkouri must go free.”

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Lost Battles of the Vietnam War

By Carlton Meyer

One theme presented by supporters of the American empire is the U.S. military is invincible and can never lose unless stabbed in the back by impatient politicians. They claim the U.S. military never lost a battle during the entire Vietnam war. On August 30, 2011, President Barack Obama proclaimed to a gathering of veterans: “But let it be remembered that you won every major battle of that war. Every single one.” This myth had been disputed by America’s most decorated officer of that war, Col. David Hackworth, in his book “About Face.” The U.S. military had every advantage, yet mistakes were made and battles lost. Internet research turns up these 70 lost battles of the Vietnam war:

1. Attack on Camp Holloway – In 1962, the U.S. Army established an airfield near Pleiku in central South Vietnam, which grew to include logistics elements and a large advisory group. In early 1965, some 300 Viet Cong slipped past ARVN guards and swept through the camp killing 8 Americans, wounding 126, destroying 10 aircraft and damaging 15 more. The Viet Cong withdrew to avoid battling reinforcements, with few losses.

2. Battle of Ap Bac – In January 1963, American advisors launched abattle after they pressured reluctant South Vietnamese officers to use American air mobility assets to destroy the Viet Cong. The attack was a disaster in which the VC mauled a far larger force while shooting down five American helicopters (pictured) and damaging eight, while killing three Americans and wounding eight.

3. The Sinking of the USNS Card – This World War II aircraft carrier was later used as a transport for American military cargo. On May 2, 1964, it was moored in a heavily defended harbor in the Saigon River. Two VC commandos crawled down a sewer pipe and attached explosives to the ship. The explosion knocked a huge hole in the hull and killed five American crewmen, causing the ship to sink 45 feet to the river bed.

4. Attack on Bien Hoa Airbase – On November 1, 1964, Viet Cong squads shelled the airfield at Bien Hoa with mortars. The attack began shortly after midnight and lasted 20 minutes. It was estimated that there were three 81mm mortars. The attack was effective as 27 aircraft were hit, including 20 B-57s (5 destroyed), 4 helicopters, and 3 A-1H Skyraiders. A fourth Skyraider crashed trying to take-off. Five Americans and two Vietnamese were killed, and 43 wounded.

5. The Dragon’s Jaw – On Apr 3, 1965, the U.S. military conducted the first of hundreds ofbombing raids to destroy the Thanh Hoa Bridge in North Vietnam. Thousands of bombs were dropped and eleven American aircraft shot down with several more damaged beyond repair until the iron bridge finally fell in 1972.

6. Battle of Dong Xoai – Soon after American combat brigades arrived in South Vietnam, the NVA attacked this large, strategic base defended by ARVN units supported by American Special Forces and airpower. The base was overrun with hundreds of casualties while two dozen Americans died in combat and helicopter crashes, with even more wounded or missing.

7. Sapper Attack on Da Nang Airbase – North Vietnamese Army (NVA) sappers infiltrated this airbase on July 1, 1965. They destroyed three large C-130 transport aircraft, three F-102 fighters, and damaged three more F-102s. The sappers escaped leaving behind one dead.

8. Iron Hand Air Strikes – American aircraft had suffered losses from North Vietnamese Surface-to-Air Missile (SAM) systems. On August 13, 1965, the Navy aircraft carriers USS Coral Sea and USS Midway launched 76 low-level “Iron Hand” missions to seek out and destroy SAM sites. Five aircraft and three pilots were lost to enemy guns, and seven other planes were damaged, but no SAMs were discovered.

9. Death of Supply Column 21 – Operation Starlite was the first major Marine Corps operation in Vietnam, and fighting was tougher than expected. A ship landed an armored supply column to support combat forces, which became lost and was attacked in a rice paddy on Aug 18, 1965. Five of the seven armored vehicles were destroyed (including two tanks) during a day long firefight. Five of the 27 Marines were killed and 17 wounded as they held off the enemy until daybreak.

10. The Battle of Ia Drang –  This was one of many disastrous airmobile assaults, when infantry



helicoptered into a remote area and encountered a larger enemy force with ample ammunition. On Nov 14, 1965, 450 soldiers from the 1st battalion of the 7th Cavalry landed at LZ X-ray and found itself surrounded with little ammunition and no heavy firepower. It was nearly overrun while suffering 79 killed and 121 wounded, and survived only by demanding all available air support in Vietnam. The 7th Cavalry left the area after declaring victory, while survivors pondered the wisdom of an attrition strategy using American foot infantry.

11. Battle for LZ Albany – The 1st battalion of the 7th Cavalry barely survived its now famous 1965 battle in the Ia Drang valley. After saving its 1st battalion, the exhausted 2nd battalion headed for LZ Albany for an aerial extraction. It was in a long column in open terrain when it ran into a concealed NVA battalion, which attacked and shot it to pieces during a bloody battle that claimed the lives of 155 Americans, with 124 wounded.

12. Attack on Marble Mountain – Some 90 Viet Cong sappers infiltrated this huge Marine Corps airfield and destroyed 19 helicopters and damaged 35 (11 of them severely). After this 30 minute rampage, the Viet Cong withdrew, leaving behind 17 dead and 4 wounded. American casualties were 3 killed and 91 wounded.

13. Operation Utah – On Mar 4, 1966, the 2nd battalion of the 7th Marines helicoptered into an area near Quang Ngai to investigate reports of an NVA regiment in the area. They found it dug into fortifications around Hill 50. Their attacked failed and the Marines fell back, but were surprised when the NVA counterattacked. The battalion was in trouble and more Marine units where flown in to join the battle. The enemy withdrew, but only after the Marines lost 98 dead, 278 wounded, with several aircraft destroyed.

14. Battle of Xa Cam My – A battalion from the 1st Infantry Division conducted another “search and destroy” sweep. Its three companies were deployed miles apart in hopes the NVA would attack one. They surrounded and blasted Charlie company, killing 38 and wounding 71 of its 134 soldiers before its other two companies came to the rescue.

15. Operation Paul Revere IV – Two cavalry battalions swept the Cambodian border area in search of the enemy. None were found, until Company C ran into a large force near Duc Co. Details are scarce, but two platoons were overrun and destroyed; only one soldier survived. The American dead were so numerous that they were hauled away in external cargo nets by helicopters.

16. Battle of Cu Nghi – As the 7th Cavalry began Operation Masher, a CH-47 helicopter was shot down. A company of soldiers was flown to the rescue, but they were shot up and pinned down. More units hastily arrived and found two battalions of entrenched NVA fighters firing away at troopers scattered around an area that became known as “the graveyard.” Several helicopters where shot down during this three-day melee that left 140 Americans dead and 220 wounded.

17. Battle of Ho Bo Woods – On July 19, 1966, Company A, 1st Bn, 27th Rgt, 25th Division helicoptered into an LZ with 92 soldiers on a search and destroy mission. There is no account of what happened next, except that 25 were killed and 32 wounded as the company fled aboard helicopters, leaving 16 of their dead behind.

18. Operation Crimson Tide – On Oct 18, 1966 the first mission to rescue an AmericanPOW was launched. It ended in disaster, with 12 killed, 17 missing, two helicopters shot down, and no prisoners rescued.

19. “Black Friday“– Strike aircraft losses were common, but on December 2, 1966 the U.S. Air Force lost five aircraft and the Navy lost three aircraft to surface to air missiles or anti-aircraft gun fire. Air Force losses included three F-4Cs, one RF-4C, and an F-105. The Navy lost one F-4B and two Douglas A-4C Skyhawks.

20. Attack at Binh Duong – On Feb 26, 1967, a Viet Cong battalion nearly overran Alpha Company, 4th Battalion, 9th Regiment, of the Army’s 25th Division. The VC slipped past camp defenses in a surprise attack that killed 19 Americans and several ARVN soldiers.

21. Operation Hickory – In May 1967, U.S. Marines were ordered to cross into the DMZ and destroy the NVA. Several days of frontal assaults killed lots of NVA lodged in fortifications, but also killed 142 Marines and wounded 896 until the marines withdrew after ten days of pointless attacks.

22. Battle near Vinh Huy – During Operation Union II, six rifle companies from the 5th Marines swept the Que Son Valley in search of the enemy. They located a large enemy force 1000 yards ahead across an open rice paddy. After some air and artillery strikes, three companies were ordered to charge across the open ground, and were shot to pieces. The bloodied Marines fell back during this June 2, 1967 battle with 71 KIA and 139 wounded.

23. August 1967 Air Battle – This war produced two American “Ace” fighter pilots (i.e. five or more aerial shoot downs), yet the North Vietnamese had 16, including Nguyen Van Coc (right), the top Ace of the war with nine kills. On Aug. 23, 1967, Coc led several MIG fighters to intercept a group of 40 American aircraft on a bombing mission. They shot down three American F-4D fighters and one F-105D fighter-bomber without losing a single MIG. Eight American aviators were killed or captured.

24. Battle of Prek Klok – During Operation Junction City, Company B from the 1st Battalion/16th Infantry went in search of the NVA. Independent accounts cannot be found, yet the Army’s official history notes the company was blasted and nearly surrounded until rescued when another company came to its aid, allowing it to retreat. Company B was extracted by helicopter after suffering 25 dead and 28 wounded. Army Generals declared victory and awarded the company commander a silver star.

25. Kingfisher Battle – In 1967, “Operation Kingfisher” was launched to destroy NVA forces just south of the DMZ. On Sept. 21st, the 2nd battalion, 4th Marines began a “search and destroy” mission and quickly encountered the entrenched 90th NVA regiment. The Marines lacked tank support because recent rains limited road mobility, while the dense vegetation and close proximity of the enemy restricted air and artillery support. After a day-long battle, the Marines had suffered at least 16 dead and 118 wounded while trying to break out of the enemy’s kill zone. The battalion withdrew at dusk, although flee may be a better term since 15 dead Marines were left behind. Details are sketchy, but the battalion didn’t return to collect its dead until three weeks later. Veterans of the battlestate they lost 34 KIA that day.

26. Rocket Attack on Da Nang– On July 15, 1967, the NVA conducted a major rocket bombardment on the key U.S. airbase at Da Nang. A total 83 NVA 122mm and 140mm rockets hit the base just before dawn, resulting in 8 killed, 175 wounded, 10 aircraft destroyed and 49 damaged.

27. The Battle of Thon Cam Son – In July 1967, the 2nd battalion of the 9th Marines crossed into the DMZ to find the NVA. They found abandoned base camps and bunkers because the NVA had pulled out and moved around behind them. The Marines had to fight their way back home, and more than half the unit bled as it lost 41 killed and 355 wounded.

28. Battle for Nui Ho Khe (Hill 88) – Marines were concerned that enemy units near their big Con Thien base threatened their main supply route. On Sept 10, 1967, the 3rd battalion of the 26th Marines ventured forward to secure Hill 88. It was surprised to encounter an entire NVA regiment, which counterattacked causing a bloody fight in which 3/26 suffered 300 casualties (40% including 37 KIA) and lost several tanks. It withdrew to Hill 48 where it made a successful last stand. While the NVA suffered more causalities, poor intel resulted in this clumsy assault that failed to reach its objective.

29. Slaughter at LZ Margo – The 2nd battalion of the 26th Marines helicoptered into LZ Margo near the DMZ on a standard search and destroy mission. Contact was light over the next three days as units swept the area. On Sept. 16, 1968, the battalion received an order from higher headquarters to withdraw into the small LZ where they had arrived, because a big B-52 air strike was planned in the area. Marines were worried because they were tightly grouped and the ground was rock hard so they couldn’t dig in. They knew the NVA kept them under observation and were a perfect target for a mortar barrage. A short time later, hundreds of mortar rounds tore into the tightly packed Marines, killing 30 and wounding nearly 200 until the NVA ran out of ammo.

30. Operation Swift – U.S. Marines fought tough battles along the DMZ when NVA units moved across the border to inflict heavy causalities. Marine Generals sent rifle companies with ~140 Marines to search for and destroy the NVA intruders with artillery and airpower. This was effective, but larger NVA units sometimes trapped them in kill zones. In September 1967, they ambushed two Marine companies in the Que Son Valley.Operation Swift was launched to save them from destruction, but the two companies sent to the rescue were mauled. The end result was 127 Marines killed and 362 wounded. The NVA suffered more casualties, but accomplished their mission and withdrew northward.

31. Convoy Ambush near An Khe – In Sept 1967, 39 trucks from the U.S. Army’s 8th Transportation Group were returning home after delivering supplies to Plekiu. They were escorted by two gun jeeps in an area considered mostly secure by the presence of the 1st Calvary Division. A Viet Cong company ambushed this big convoy in broad daylight. Seven Americans were killed, 17 wounded, and 30 vehicles were damaged or destroyed. The VC quickly disappeared and no evidence of enemy casualties were found.

32. Task Force Black Mauled – Half of the 1st Battalion/501st Regiment/173rd Airborne Brigade went in search for the NVA who had recently attacked their base. They ran into two NVA battalions, who shot them up from three directions. The rest of the battalion was sent to save them, and withdrew with 20 dead, 154 wounded, and two missing.

33. Battle near Ap Bac – The U.S. Army’s 9th Infantry Division operated in the marshy delta region of southern Vietnam, often with Navy river patrol boats. During a routine battalion sweep, Alpha company from the 2nd Brigade crossed an open rice paddy and encountered Viet Cong ready to fight from concrete bunkers. Most of the company was wiped out in the first five minutes, and rest pinned down in the kill zone for hours until other companies arrived. This battle left 40 American dead and 140 wounded.

34. Battle for Hill 861 – In 1967, Bravo Company, 1st battalion, 9th Marines went to search for caves on Hill 861. After a skirmish, the company attacked up the hill without knowing that it had encountered a large enemy force. Most of Bravo was wiped out and the survivors were pinned down until rescued by Kilo company that night.

35. Overrun in Happy Valley – During the first two weeks of 1968, 69 soldiers from the 196th Infantry Brigade died in heavy fighting in the Hiep Duc Valley, Quang Tin Province. On  January 9-10, Alpha and Delta companies from its 3/21 Infantry battalion were overrun. The Delta company commander and 27 men were killed. Dozens were wounded and eight Americans taken prisoner as survivors held out in small groups overnight until rescued the following day.

36. Ambush at Hoc Mon – In 1968, 92 American soldiers of C Company, 4th Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment, 25th Division began a search-and-destroy mission near Saigon. They were looking for a Viet Cong force that had been firing rockets into their Tan Son Nhut Air Base. As they rushed along a road without flank security to catch up with their battalion, they ran into an ambush. Within eight minutes, 49 American soldiers were dead or dying, and 29 were wounded.

37. Battle of Kham Duc – This large Special Forces camp was abandoned as it wasoverrun, despite reinforcement by an American infantry battalion from the 196th brigade. Hundreds of friendly civilians and militiamen were left behind as Americans escaped aboard helicopters and C-130s.

38. Khe Sahn Village Overrun – A large village three kilometers from the famous Khe Sahn military base was defended by 160 local troops, plus 15 American advisors and heavy artillery from the base. In January 1968, it was attacked by a ~300-man NVA battalion. Reinforcements were dispatched aboard nine UH-1 helicopters, but were wiped out after landing near the NVA, along with one helicopter. A small ground rescue force from the nearby base was repulsed, while the survivors from the village assault fled to the Khe Sahn base.

39. Battle of the Slopes – A company of American paratroopers was searching for the NVA in rough terrain when it was attacked by a large force. It suffered 76 KIA as it was nearly overrun, with two platoons wiped out. Newly arrived airborne officers had ignored warnings that they should maneuver as battalions because the NVA units in that area were larger, aggressive, and would attack a lone rifle company.

40. Battle of No Goi Island – The Viet Cong liked to fortify ambush sites and wait for the Americans to discover them. During Operation Allen Brook, three battalions of Marines swept through No Goi Island and found lots of Viet Cong ready to fight from bunkers near the village of Le Bac. During several days of bloody assaults, the Marines suffered 138 killed and 686 wounded (576 seriously) before the surviving Viet Cong fled. The extreme heat resulted in another 283 Marines evacuated due to heat stroke. Having suffered 50% causalities, Allen Brook was halted until fresh Marine units arrived.

41. Battle at the Ben Cui Rubber Plantation – American mechanized units had the firepower and mobility to rout any NVA force. An exceptionoccurred in 1968 during a routine road sweep when Company C, 1st Bn (Mech), 25th Division ran into an aggressive NVA regiment. It quickly lost 5 APCs (right), with 17 killed (leaving just one officer), and two dozen wounded before it retreated to its home base, leaving most of its dead behind.

42. Battle of Dai Do – A Marine Corps infantry battalion was mauled and forced to retreat after a disorganized attempt to dislodge a large North Vietnamese force near the DMZ. The Marines suffered 81 KIA and 397 wounded while killing hundreds of NVA. Accounts of this action are hidden within reports of operations in region of Dong Ha.

43. Battle of Ong Thanh – After minor enemy contact the previous day, a battalion commander led 155 American soldiers single-file into the bush to destroy the enemy. They ran into an NVA regiment with some 1400 men. Alpha company was wiped out in 20 minutes, and by sundown, 59 American soldiers lay dead with 75 wounded. An excellentdocumentary is on-line where survivors describe the onslaught.

44. Operation Delaware – In this April 1968 offensive, the U.S. Army learned that mountain jungles allow concealed anti-aircraft weapons to easily shoot down low-flying aircraft. Units of the 1st Cavalry Division helicoptered into rugged terrain and killed hundreds of NVA as they withdrew to Laos. However, the NVA shot down a C-130 transport, two fighter-bombers, eight large helicopters, nearly two dozen UH-1 helicopters, and seriously damaged three dozen other helicopters, whose crashes left 47 Americans MIA. The NVA also killed 142 Americans, wounded 731, and returned to the area as the 1st Cav withdrew after three weeks of fighting.

45. Operation Houston II – In May 1968, as Mike company from the 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines moved up a ridge called Hill 1192, they wandered into an NVA base camp and were shot to pieces with 14 killed and dozens wounded. Three helicopters were shot down attempting to rescue wounded Marines. The surviving marines remained pinned down and bleeding for several days until rescued by another company.

46. Battle for LZ Loon – The Marines landed on Hill 672 to build an artillery fire support base. The NVA objected, and sent a battalion to attack the two undermanned companies from the 4th Marines. After a day of heavy fighting that included NVA artillery fire, half the Marines were casualties. It was decided to abandon the hill by helicopter, leaving most of the dead behind. One helicopter was shot down during the extraction after this battle that left 41 Marines dead and over 100 wounded.

47. Battle of Two July – The 1st battalion, 9th Marines went up a road to find the NVA, and found them. Information is vague, but Bravo Company was overrun and the remnants of Alpha Company pulled back, leaving a combined 53 known dead, 190 wounded, and 34 missing.

48. Battle for Hill 875 – or the Siege of Dak To– The 2nd battalion of the 173rd Airborne Brigade with over 300 soldiers advanced up this hill with artillery and air support. They encountered stiff resistance and suffered heavy causalities, but were shocked when the NVA counterattacked. The battalion formed a tight defensive perimeter and was surrounded while chaos ensued after a Marine Corps’ jet dropped a 500 lbs bomb on their position. The brigade’s 4th battalion arrived the following day and broke the siege, then advanced to secure the hill after the NVA withdrew. Of the 570 US troops involved in the attack on the hill, 340 became casualties.

49. Battle for Firebase Mary Ann – Some 50 NVA sappers attacked at night, then slipped away. The U.S. Army suffered 33 killed and 83 wounded among the 231 soldiers at the base. Their brigade commander was relieved of duty and the firebase closed.

50. Battle of Ngok Tavak – On May 10, 1968, an NVA battalion attacked an old French fort manned by a 150 Chinese mercenaries led by eight American Special Force troopers and three Australian advisors, plus 33 U.S. Marine Corps artillerymen with two 105mm howitzers. Helicopters flew in 45 more Marines as reinforcements and evacuated casualties during the day-long battle. The fort was overrun and everyone fled, with some literally clinging to the skids of a helicopter. At least 32 Americans were killed and several helicopters shot down. A book about this lost battle was published, and a short account ishere.  

51. Battle of Lang Vei – In 1968, the NVA surprised everyone by using light tanks to overrun the well-defended U.S. Special Forces camp at Lang Vei, despite heavy American artillery and air support. Most of the 500 defending Montagnards were killed. Losses among the 24 Americans were 7 KIA, 3 POWs, and 11 wounded.

52. Ambush near Khe Sahn – On Feb 25, 1968, a 41-man platoon from the 26th Marines was sent on a short patrol “outside the wire” to test the strength of NVA units near Khe Sahn village. They pursed three VC scouts who led them into an ambush. The platoon waswiped out during a three-hour battle that left 31 Marines KIA, one taken prisoner, while nine Marines escaped back to their base.

53. Battle of Thon La Chu – The 1968 Tet offensive caught the U.S. military by surprise, and the NVA captured the city of Hue. During this chaos, the cavalry was sent to save the Marines as the Army’s lightly armed 2nd battalion/12th Cavalry flew to the rescue in helicopters. After landing, it charged across an open rice paddy without its customary artillery or air support and suffered considerable casualties. The enemy had superior numbers, superior positions, and enough firepower to encircle the battalion. With 60% casualties, no supplies and little air support, the battalion was lucky to slip away at night and flee total destruction.

54. Fall of A Shau – The NVA sent five battalions to overrun this large Special Forces camp near the Vietnam border. It was defended by 380 local troops led by 17 Americans.

Posted in USA, Far EastComments Off on Lost Battles of the Vietnam War

Millions of job seekers’ fingerprints will now be searched for criminal investigations, says FBI

Privacy SOS 

For years the FBI has performed federal criminal background checks for employers and state governments, amassing tens of millions of biometric records on people accused of no crime. If you want to be a lawyer, teacher, or even bike messenger in many parts of the United States, you’ll need to submit your fingerprints to the FBI. Every single federal employee must submit their prints before employment. Until recently, the FBI claimed it would not search these civil prints when conducting criminal print matching; a wall between the civil and criminal fingerprint databases kept these distinct sets of information separate, the Bureau claimed. But in February 2015, that all changed—very quietly.

EFF‘s Jennifer Lynch:

The change, which the FBI revealed quietly in a February 2015 Privacy Impact Assessment (PIA), means that if you ever have your fingerprints taken for licensing or for a background check, they will most likely end up living indefinitely in the FBI’s [Next Generation Identification] database. They’ll be searched thousands of times a day by law enforcement agencies across the country—even if your prints didn’t match any criminal records when they were first submitted to the system.

This is the first time the FBI has allowed routine criminal searches of its civil fingerprint data. Although employers and certifying agencies have submitted prints to the FBI for decades, the FBI says it rarely retained these non-criminal prints. And even when it did retain prints in the past, they were not readily accessible or searchable.” Now, not only will these prints—and the biographical data included with them—be available to any law enforcement agent who wants to look for them, they will be searched as a matter of course along with all prints collected for a clearly criminal purpose (like upon arrest or at time of booking).

This seems part of an ever-growing movement toward cataloguing information on everyone in America—and a movement that won’t end with fingerprints. With the launch of the face recognition component of NGI, employers and agencies will be able to submit a photograph along with prints as part of the standard background check. As we’ve noted before, one of FBI’s stated goals for NGI is to be able to track people as they move from one location to another. Having a robust database of face photos, built out using non-criminal records, will only make that goal even easier to achieve.

The FBI’s decision to start using civil prints in criminal investigations demonstrates that we should be very skeptical of all government efforts to collect and retain sensitive information about us. Today they say they won’t do X, Y, or Z with that information. But that can change very easily, and without many of the millions of people affected taking much notice.

Read more about the FBI’s plans to amass biometric information on all of us.

Posted in USAComments Off on Millions of job seekers’ fingerprints will now be searched for criminal investigations, says FBI

Kol Nidre, the Jewish doctrine of deception


Yom Kippur

When speaking to Jews about hot bottom issues like Zionism and Noahide Law, many people have noticed a strong tendency in the “chosen people” to obfuscate, obscure issues, redirect attention and even outright lie.  The Jewish Talmud provides Jews with an extremely well crafted and clever doctrine called “Kol Nidre” which allows them to break their oaths at any time.  So potent is the culture of Kol Nidre among Jews that they even find it hard to trust each other, and governments who become aware of this practice often put legal provisions (Jew Oaths) into their legal systems to counter its effect.  Jews often try to deceive Gentiles into believing that Kol Nidre is a simple prayer with no reference to human relations, but the Talmud and other sources reveal this tactic to be a use of Kol Nidre itself.  If the excerpts from the Talmud confuse you, please skip down to the 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia entry.



I. Sanctification” and “Desecration of the Name”

Throughout the Talmud, the term “Sanctification” and “Desecration of the Name” comes up very often, especially when Jews are speaking about lying to or stealing from Gentiles.  The 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia gives us half the story on “desecration of the name”; they say the phrase means Jews are not to do anything that will bring discredit to the Jewish Religion. However we will show below that this phrase often means you can do almost anything you want to Gentiles, just so long as you do not get caught!

“Terms denoting the highest positive and negative standards of Jewish ethics, the one indicating that everything within man’s power should be done to glorify the name of God before the world, the other that everything should be avoided which may reflect discredit upon the religion of Israel and thereby desecrate the name of God” –“Sanctification” and “Desecration of the Name”, 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia

II. Lie to win legal cases against Gentiles

According to the Talmud, in Baba Kamma 113b, Jews can deceive Gentiles to gain the upper hand in legal matters. The only time there is a prohibition against lying is if there is danger the Gentile will discover the lie (“sanctification of the name”).

“Where a suit arises between an Israelite and a heathen, if you can justify the former according to the laws of Israel, justify him and say: ‘This is our law;’ so also if you can justify him by the laws of the heathens, justify him and say to the other party: ‘This is your law;’ but if this cannot be done, we use subterfuges to circumvent him.”… “but were there no infringement of the sanctification of the Name, we could circumvent him!”  – 1962 Soncino Babylonian Talmud, Baba Kamma 113b

III. The Kol Nidre (Prayer) 

“All vows, obligations, oaths, and anathemas, whether called ‘ḳonam,’ ‘ḳonas,’ or by any other name, which we may vow, or swear, or pledge, or whereby we may be bound, from this Day of Atonement until the next (whose happy coming we await), we do repent. May they be deemed absolved, forgiven, annulled, and void, and made of no effect; they shall not bind us nor have power over us. The vows shall not be reckoned vows; the obligations shall not be obligatory; nor the oaths be oaths.” – Sung by World Jewry every year on Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) – Kol Nidre, 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia 

Kol Nidre In The Talmud

In regards to lying to Gentiles, Jews are given a provision to break vows or make false vows via a proxy called “Kol Nidre” found in the Talmudic book of Nedarim 23a and further elaborated in 23b and 24a. Let’s investigate these Talmudic passages so that we can easily refute the lies about Kol Nidre heaped upon Gentiles today by the Jewish establishment.

Nedarim 23a

1962 Soncino Babylonian Talmud

1. Kol Nidre involves vows made to people, NOT GOD

Notice here that the Talmudic folio is speaking about being absolved for making vows one could not keep to other people (NOT GOD). This is very important to note because Jews often try to assert that the Kol Nidre is only meant to absolve Jews for broken promises they have made to their god and not to other people.  The example cited here is very innocuous, it simply explains that Jews are not responsible for oaths they broke for reasons not under their personal control, such as one’s wife or daughter not following instructions. However, the example does show we are talking about vows made to people and not god as many Jews try to assert. In fact, the entire book of Nedarim is about vows, Nedarim means “vows” and the Kol Nidre literally means “all vows”, not just vows to god.

Abaye’s wife had a daughter. He declared, ‘[She must marry] one of my relations,’ and she maintained, ‘one of mine’. So he said to her: ‘[All] benefit from me be forbidden to you if you disregard my wish and marry her to one of your relations.’ She went, ignored his desire, and married her to her relation. [Subsequently Abaye] went before R. Joseph [for absolution], who asked him: ‘Had you known that she would disregard your wish and marry her to her relation, would you have vowed?’ He answered, ‘No,’ and R. Joseph absolved him. But is such permitted?[6]  — Yes, and it was taught: A man once imposed a vow on his wife not to make the festival pilgrimage [to Jerusalem]; but she disregarded his wish, and did go. He went to R. Jose [for absolution], who said to him, ‘Had you known that she would disregard your wish and make the journey, would you have imposed the vow on her?’ He answered, ‘No,’ and R. Jose absolved him. – 1962 Soncino Babylonian Talmud, Nedarim 23a

Footnote 6: The vow itself providing cause for absolution.

2. Confusing language of the Kol Nidre

The next passage is hard to make sense of, but the Rabbis will admit that this was done on purpose! How fitting that the very passage which provides a dispensation of truth for Jews is purposely written in a manner to “confuse”. [See Index IV. Keeping the Gentiles Confused] Yet, we do get the sense that the Rabbis are talking about making a vow one has made to a friend null because it was a vow of “incitement”, and in order for the vow to be officially absolved, the Jew breaking the vow would have to remember something at the time they made the vow. What all this means is explained in the next folio of the Talmud.


GEMARA. But since he says, ‘Every vow which I may make in the future shall be null,’ he will surely not listen to him[8]  and not come to [eat with] him? —

Footnote 7: The friend.
Footnote 8: This too is an example of a vow of incitement, v. Gemara.

Nedarim 23b

1962 Soncino Babylonian Talmud

3. The Kol Nidre Explained

The Rabbis tell us the text is “defective”. In the next passage we will see that this was done deliberately rather than by accident.  But first they explain the meaning of the Kol Nidre to us.  If one imposes a vow on one’s friend (a person, not god)  to come to dinner and thus “incite” them to a vow they originally did not want to make, the friend is absolved when they  breaking this vow… just so long as they remembered the text of the Kol Nidre which was stated in the previous folio.  It would seem that this text would have been recited by the Jew at the beginning of the year for this very purpose, for nullifying his or her vows in advance. Indeed the Kol Nidre is refered to as as the “law of revocation in advance” and “a formula for the dispensation of vows” in footnote 1 to the same passage. As long as they remember the Kol Nidre at the time of making false vows, there is no obligation for a Jew to announce that their vow is false or will be unfulfilled.  Footnote 1 also clarifies that the only stipulation given is that the Jew cannot personally benefit from breaking the vow.

The text is defective, and this is what was taught: He who desires his friend to eat with him, and after urging him, imposes a vow upon him, it is ‘a vow of incitement [and hence invalid]. And he who desires that none of his vows made during the year shall be valid, let him stand at the beginning of the year and declare, ‘Every vow which I may make in the future shall be null.[1]  [HIS VOWS ARE THEN INVALID,] PROVIDING THAT HE REMEMBERS THIS AT THE TIME OF THE VOW. But if he remembers, he has cancelled the declaration and confirmed the vow?[2]  — Abaye answered: Read: providing that it is not remembered at the time of the vow. Raba said, After all, it is as we said originally.[3]  Here the circumstances are e.g., that one stipulated at the beginning of the year, but does not know in reference to what. Now he vows. Hence, if he remembers [the stipulation] and he declares: ‘I vow in accordance with my original intention’, his vow has no reality. But if he does not declare thus, he has cancelled his stipulation and confirmed his vow. – 1962 Soncino Babylonian Talmud, Nedarim 23b 


Footnote 1. This may have provided a support for the custom of reciting Kol Nidre (a formula for dispensation of vows) prior to the Evening Service of the Day of Atonement (Ran.). The context makes it perfectly obvious that only vows, where the maker abjures benefit from aught. or imposes an interdict of his own property upon his neighbour, are referred to. V. J.E. s.v. Kol Nidre. Though the beginning of the year (New Year) is mentioned here, the Day of Atonement was probably chosen on account of its great solemnity. But Kol Nidre as part of the ritual is later than the Talmud, and, as seen from the following statement about R. Huna h. Hinena, the law of revocation in advance was not made public.

Footnote 2. Since, when vowing. he knows of his previous declaration, he obviously disregards it. as otherwise he would not vow at all.

Footnote 3. The received text is correct.

4. The Kol Nidre is Purposely Deceiving

From the final passage of Nedarim 23b and footnote 4 we learn that the text of the Kol Nidre was purposely obscured so that oaths would not be taken too lightly if the Kol Nidre were taught publicly, indeed the Jewish Encyclopedia will show that even Jews have found it hard to trust one another because of the Kol Nidre.  So what does this purposefully confusing language mean?  It means the the Rabbis knew exactly what the Kol Nidre does, it absolves Jews from making false vows under incitement, but they don’t want Gentiles or even too many Jews to know this, so they purposely obscured the text!

R. Huna b. Hinena wished to lecture thereon [sc. anticipatory cancellation] at the public session. But Raba remonstrated with him: The Tanna has intentionally obscured the law,[4]  in order that vows should not be lightly treated, whilst you desire to teach it publicly!

The scholars propounded: Do the Rabbis disagree with R. Eliezer b. Jacob or not?[5]  And should you say that they differ, is the halachah like him or not?[6]  — Come and hear: For we learnt: If one says to his neighbour, – 1962 Soncino Babylonian Talmud, Nedarim 23b 


Footnote 4. By giving a defective text. This implies that here, at least, the lacuna is not accidental, due to faulty transmission, but deliberate; cf. p. 2, n. 3.

Footnote 5. But regard this as a binding vow.

 Footnote 6. Since the Mishnah teaches it as an individual opinion.

Nedarim 24a
1962 Soncino Babylonian Talmud

5. As long as the vow “Honors” 

“everything should be avoided which may reflect discredit upon the religion of Israel and thereby desecrate the name of God” – 
“Sanctification” and “Desecration of the Name”, 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia 

Technical details about the Kol Nidre extend on into the book of Nedarim, but we will finish for now at Nedarim 24a where again we are given examples of vows made to humans and not god. Here, Jews can absolve themselves of vows without the help of a sage or rabbi as long as they broke their vow to “honour me” [aka the Jewish god, the Jewish Religion, and the Jews].  We are also reminded that incitement automatically makes a vow invalid. Jews must hide the darker elements of their ideology (such as the Noahide Laws) and so often feel under “incitement” to lie or break a vow of truth in regards to their beliefs.  So Jews can use Kol Nidre to prevent the “desecration of the name”, meaning they can break vows of honesty to Gentiles to keep them in the dark about their sinister intentions and devious undertakings.

‘Konam that I do not benefit from your if you do not accept for your son a kor of wheat and two barrels of wine,’ — his neighbour may annul his vow without [recourse to] a Sage, by saying: ‘Did you vow for any other purpose but to honour me? This [nonacceptance] is my honour.’ Thus, it is only because he asserts, ‘This is my honour’; but otherwise, it is [a binding] vow. Whose view is this? If R. Eliezer b. Jacob’s, — it is a vow of incitement?[1]  Hence it must be the Rabbis,[2]  thus proving that they disagree with R. Eliezer! — [No.] After all, it may be R. Eliezer b. Jacob’s view: he admits that this is a [real] vow, for he [who makes it] says [in effect], ‘I am not a dog, that I should benefit from you without your benefiting from me.’ – 1962 Soncino Babylonian Talmud, Nedarim 24a

Footnote1: Which is invalid in any case.
Footnote 2:  The text is thus emended by BaH.


Refuting Lies About Kol Nidre

The Jewish Encyclopedia attempts to assert that the Kol Nidre proxy only applies to vows made to god and not vows made to other people, and that the proxy is only part of a prayer made once a year on Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) to absolve Jews of any vows they make that year to their god that they are unable to keep. This is an obvious lie and a use of Kol Nidre itself since according to footnote 1 in Nedarim 23b of the Talmud, the Kol Nidre is a legal proxy that exists outside of Yom Kippur and was not incorporated into the ritual of Yom Kippur until later, partially because the proxy was not made public. Kol Nidre is even referred to as “the law of revocation in advance” and “a formula for dispensation of vows”.

This may have provided a support for the custom of reciting Kol Nidre (a formula for dispensation of vows) prior to the Evening Service of the Day of Atonement (Ran.). The context makes it perfectly obvious that only vows, where the maker abjures benefit from aught. or imposes an interdict of his own property upon his neighbour, are referred to. V. J.E. s.v. Kol Nidre. Though the beginning of the year (New Year) is mentioned here, the Day of Atonement was probably chosen on account of its great solemnity. But Kol Nidre as part of the ritual is later than the Talmud, and, as seen from the following statement about R. Huna h. Hinena, the law of revocation in advance was not made public. – 1962 Soncino Babylonian Talmud, Nedarim 23b, Footnote 1

As we showed in the Talmud, all the stipulations of the Kol Nidre proxy deal with breaking vows one makes to other people, and not to god.  In addition, according to the proxy of the Kol Nidre, the Jew must only announce their vow as false if they do not remember the proxy of the Kol Nidre, which they had ritually stated at the beginning of the year, at the time they make the false vow. If the Jew remembers the Kol Nidre at the time they make the false vow then the Jew has no obligation to proclaim that their vow is false. Who would willingly try to deceive their omniscient god like this? Again, the most relevant application of Kol Nidre for Jews is to make false vows of truth so that they do not have to reveal the unsavory and outright dangerous elements of their ideology.

KOL NIDRE = All Vows
1906 Jewish Encyclopedia

1. Kol Nidre is not just a prayer

Under the 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia article entry on the Kol Nidre, the Jews try to make the Kol Nidre seem like a simple “prayer” said on the “Day of Atonement”, also known as Yom Kippur.  However, we are told this simple “prayer” has had an eventful history and has even had an influence over the legal status of Jews in Gentile nations. Indeed, in the past, Gentiles have become aware of the Kol Nidre and have made legislation to protect themselves against it: “Jew Oaths”.  Yes, indeed we are told that “Christians” have employed the Kol Nidre to assert that Jews cannot be trusted, and they can’t!

Prayer recited in the synagogue at the beginning of the evening service on the Day of Atonement; the name is taken from the opening words. The “Kol Nidre” has had a very eventful history, both in itself and in its influence on the legal status of the Jews. Introduced into the liturgy despite the opposition of rabbinic authorities, repeatedly attacked in the course of time by many halakists, and in the nineteenth century expunged from the prayer-book by many communities of western Europe, it has often been employed by Christians to support their assertion that the oath of a Jew can not be trusted. – KOL NIDRE, 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia

2. Kol Nidre is recited every year at Yom Kippur

Before continuing, take a moment to read the Kol Nidre as spoken by Jews once a year on Yom Kippur and see how detailed and literal a statement it is. The proxy states that “all vows” are absolved and annulled in advance; all vows, not just vows made to god:

All vows, obligations, oaths, and anathemas, whether called ‘ḳonam,’ ‘ḳonas,’ or by any other name, which we may vow, or swear, or pledge, or whereby we may be bound, from this Day of Atonement until the next (whose happy coming we await), we do repent. May they be deemed absolved, forgiven, annulled, and void, and made of no effect; they shall not bind us nor have power over us. The vows shall not be reckoned vows; the obligations shall not be obligatory; nor the oaths be oaths.” – KOL NIDRE, 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia

3. Kol Nidre applies to humans, NOT GOD

The Jewish Encyclopedia attempts to lie and state that the Kol Nidre is only to avoid heavenly judgment, meaning that the Kol Nidre only refers to vows made to god and not people or other institutions; we have already shown from the Talmud this is not true.

The teachers of the synagogues, however, have never failed to point out to their cobelievers that the dispensation from vows in the “Kol Nidre” refers only to those which an individual voluntarily assumes for himself alone (see RoSH to Ned. 23b) and in which no other persons or their interests are involved. In other words, the formula is restricted to those vows which concern only the relation of man to his conscience or to his Heavenly Judge (see especially Tos. to Ned. 23b). In the opinion of Jewish teachers, therefore, the object of the “Kol Nidre” in declaring oaths null and void is to give protection from divine punishment in case of violation of the vow. – KOL NIDRE, 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia 

…At other times and places during the nineteenth century emphasis was frequently laid upon the fact that “in the ‘Kol Nidre’ only those vows and obligations are implied which are voluntarily assumed, and which are, so to speak, taken before God, thus being exclusively religious in content; but that those obligations are in no wise included which refer to other persons or to non-religious relations” (“Allg. Zeit. des Jud.” 1885, p. 396). – KOL NIDRE, Jewish Encyclopedia

The Jewish Encyclopedia again attempts to state that the Kol Nidre does not apply to vows made to any person, court of justice or community.  However, in the same paragraph, they admit that many early Jewish authorities wanted the Kol Nidre to be used when it was “extorted from the congregation… in times of persecution”, and so you can see that the Jews can use Kol Nidre if they feel “persecuted”. People whose books and actions are full of lies, thieving, slaving, and hate for Gentiles of course have much to hide and most certainly will bring “persecution” upon themselves from their Gentile hosts.

No vow, promise, or oath, however, which concerns another person, a court of justice, or a community is implied in the “Kol Nidre.” It must be remembered, moreover, that five geonim were against while only one was in favor of reciting the prayer (Zunz, “G. V.” p. 390, note a), and furthermore that even so early an authority as Saadia wished to restrict it to those vows which were extorted from the congregation in the synagogue in times of persecution (“Kol Bo,” l.c.); and he declared explicitly that the “Kol Nidre” gave no absolution from oaths which an individual had taken during the year. – KOL NIDRE, 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia

4. Even some Jews disapprove of the Kol Nidre

It would seem that for some time the Kol Nidre has even been disapproved of by many Jews.  Karaites, a very small sect of Jews who do not follow Talmud but Torah only, are known to have protested the Kol Nidre’s power of dispensation. It was even disqualified by many scholars of the Babylonian academies.  The moral effect of the Kol Nidre was so negative that many Jewish officials themselves felt that it made other Jews who took its advice to be untrustworthy.

The readiness with which vows were made and the facility with which they were annulled by the scribes gave the Karaites an opportunity to attack the Rabbinites, and forced the Geonim to minimize the power of dispensation. Yehudai Gaon of Sura (760), author of the “Halakot Pesuḳot,” went so far as to forbid any study whatsoever of Nedarim, the Talmudic treatise on oaths (Alfasi on Nedarim, end; L. Löw, l.c. p. 363).Thus the “Kol Nidre” was discredited in both of the Babylonian academies and was not accepted by them… For the same reason Jeroham ben Meshullam, who lived in Provence about the middle of the fourteenth century, inveighed against those fools who, trusting to the “Kol Nidre,” made vows recklessly, and he declared them incapable of giving testimony (“Toledot Adam we-Ḥawwah,” ed. 1808, section 14, part iii., p. 88; see Zunz, “G. V.” p. 390). The Karaite Judah Hadassi, who wrote the “Eshkol ha-Kofer” at Constantinople in 1148 (see Nos. 139,140 of that work), likewise protested against the “Kol Nidre.”… Judah ben Barzillai, a Spanish author of the twelfth century, in his halakic work “Sefer ha-’Ittim,” declares that the custom of reciting the “Kol Nidre” was unjustifiable and misleading, since many ignorant persons believe that all their vows and oaths are annulled through this formula, and consequently they take such obligations on themselves carelessly (“Orḥot Ḥayyim,” p. 106a).  – KOL NIDRE, 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia 

5. The Kol Nidre is recited among Gentiles

Notice, however, even though Jews themselves were upset with having to deal the with Kol Nidre, it is customary to recite the formula in the various lands of the Jewish dispersion, meaning it is customary to practice Kol Nidre in the presence of Gentiles.

 According to Naṭronai, however, it was customary to recite the formula in various lands of the Jewish dispersion, and it is clear likewise from Amram’s “Siddur” (ii. 37a) that the usage was wide-spread as early as his time in Spain… From Germany (Ṭur Oraḥ Ḥayyim, § 619) this custom spread to southern France, Spain, Greece, and probably to northern France, and was in time generally adopted (Shulḥan ‘Aruk, Yoreh De’ah, 619, 1; Zunz, l.c. p. 96). – KOL NIDRE, 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia 

6. Kol Nidre and “Jew Oaths”

The Kol Nidre has inspired many legislatures and judges throughout history to consider it necessary to have special oaths just for Jews (“Jew Oaths”).  The Jewish Encyclopedia would have us believe that all of the Gentiles and Jews throughout history who have taken issue with the Kol Nidre are simply misreading it and are projecting their own unscrupulous intention onto the text, as if the entire Talmud were not a book of insidious lies and deviant practices already. The Kol Nidre text of the Talmud was purposely written to confuse and hide its truth, what does that tell you! We even see apostates from the Jewish Religion believe the cynical nature of the Kol Nidre is true enough to use it in their attacks against their former religion.

The “Kol Nidre” has been one of the means widely used by Jewish apostates and by enemies of the Jews to cast suspicion on the trustworthiness of an oath taken by a Jew (Wagenseil, “Tela Ignea, Disputatio R. Jechielis,” p. 23; Eisenmenger, “Entdecktes Judenthum,” vol. ii., ch. ix., pp. 489 et seq., Königsberg, 1711; Bodenschatz, “Kirchliche Verfassung der Heutigen Juden,” part ii., ch. v., § 10, Frankfort and Leipsic, 1748; Rohling, “Der Talmudjude,” pp. 80et seq., Münster, 1877); so that many legislators considered it necessary to have a special form of oath administered to Jews (“Jew’s oath”), and many judges refused to allow them to take a supplementary oath, basing their objections chiefly on this prayer (Zunz, “G. S.” ii. 244; comp. pp. 246, 251). As early as 1240 Jehiel of Paris was obliged to defend the “Kol Nidre” against these charges. It can not be denied that, according to the usual wording of the formula, an unscrupulous man might think that it offers a means of escape from the obligations and promises which he had assumed and made in regard to others. – KOL NIDRE, 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia 

7. Why still Kol Nidre today?

Finally, at the 1844 rabbinical conference held in Brunswick Germany, it was unanimously declared that the Kol Nidre was not essential and that members of the conference should try their best to abolish the proxy.  Yet, there were of course many orthodox Rabbis who opposed this measure and the Kol Nidre didn’t die.  Even though it has been opposed by both Gentiles and Jews and is obviously an immoral script, the Kol Nidre is still alive and well today, being sung every year on Yom Kippur in the many synagogues of Zionism’s fifth column around the world.  The Explanation given by Jewry is that despite its moral reprehensibility, the melody which goes along with the Kol Nidre is just so appealing…

Yielding to the numerous accusations and complaints brought against the “Kol Nidre” in the course of centuries, the rabbinical conference held at Brunswick in 1844 decided unanimously that the formula was not essential, and that the members of the convention should exert their influence toward securing its speedy abolition(“Protocolle der Ersten Rabbiner Versammlung,” p. 41, Brunswick, 1844)… Naturally there were many Orthodox opponents of this innovation, among whom M. Lehmann, editor of the “Israelit,” was especially prominent (see ib. 1863, Nos. 25, 38). – KOL NIDRE, 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia 

The principal factor which preserved the great religious authority of the “Kol Nidre” well into the nineteenth century, and which continually raises up new defenders for it, is doubtless its plaintive and appealing melody, which made a deep impression even on Lenau (see his remarks in “Der Israelit,” 1864, No. 40, pp. 538 et seq.) and which was the favorite melody of Moltke, who had the violinist Joachim play it for him. – KOL NIDRE, 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia 

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Data sharing deal with US must end due to ‘mass surveillance’


Image result for mass surveillance’ PHOTO

The European Court of Justice’s top legal aid has said that a 15-year-old agreement that eases the transfer of data between the EU and the US should be ended, accusing American intelligence services of conducting “mass, indiscriminate surveillance.”

The ECJ’s advocate-general, Yves Bot, said on Wednesday that the Safe Harbour agreement does not do enough to protect the private information of EU citizens once it arrives in the US, adding that it should have been suspended.

Safe Harbour allows US firms to collect data on their European customers. The system is used by Google, Facebook, and more than 4,000 other companies.

However, it also allows the NSA to use the Prism surveillance system exposed by Snowden to wade through the personal data, communication, and information held by nine internet companies.

Using Facebook as an example, Bot said that users “are not informed that their personal data will be generally accessible to the United States security agencies.”

“Such mass, indiscriminate surveillance is inherently disproportionate and constitutes an unwarranted interference with the rights guaranteed by articles seven and eight of the charter [of fundamental rights of the EU],” he said, adding that European internet users have no effective judicial protection while the data transfers are happening.

Bot added that if any EU country believes that transferring data to overseas servers undermines the protection of citizens, it has the power to suspend those transfers “irrespective of the general assessment made by the [EU] commission in its decision.”

But despite allegations from Bot, Facebook has denied accusations that it provides ‘backdoor’ access to its servers.

Sally Aldous, a spokeswoman for the social media giant, said on Wednesday that the company “operates in compliance with EU Data Protection law. Like the thousands of other companies who operate data transfers across the Atlantic we await the full judgment.”

“We have repeatedly said that we do not provide ‘backdoor’ access to Facebook servers and data to intelligence agencies or governments,” she said.

Although Bot’s opinions are not binding, they are typically followed by the ECJ’s judges, who are considering a complaint about the arrangement in the wake of US surveillance revelations from former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

The EU court’s decision is expected in the next four to six months.

The European Commission has been in talks with the US for two years, discussing ways to strengthen the Safe Harbour framework amid calls for its suspension.

Meanwhile, many US companies have praised the 2000 Safe Harbour deal, saying it helps them avoid complicated checks to transfer vital data, including payroll and human resources information.

An end to the agreement would cause a headache for US companies operating in the EU, as well as bring about the potential for a varying of national approaches, lawyers said, as cited by Reuters.

It comes just six months after 27-year-old Austrian law student Max Schrems filed a complaint against Facebook, alleging the social media site was helping the NSA harvest email and other private data by forwarding European data to servers in the US.

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Two-thirds of Palestinians support traitor Ab-A$$ departure


Posted by: Sammi Ibrahem,Sr

Traitor Ab-A$$

An opinion poll has suggested that two-thirds of Palestinians believe that traitor Mahmoud Ab-A$$ should resign. They also think that his resignation from the PLO Executive Committee is not “real”.

The Palestinian Centre for Policy and Survey Research released the results of a poll on Monday that it conducted in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip between 17 and 19 September. The results show that the popularity of Ab-A$$ has declined “significantly” in the occupied West Bank and has improved “slightly” in the Gaza Strip. Fatah’s popularity has declined in both the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

The results revealed an increase in Hamas popularity in the occupied West Bank and a significant decrease in the Gaza Strip. The popularity of the deputy leader of the Islamic movement, Ismail Haniyeh, has improved in the West Bank but fallen slightly in Gaza.

“If Abbas does not participate in the next presidential elections,” said the research NGO, “the only viable candidates from Fatah to replace him are Marwan Barghouti followed, but with much less support, by Mohammad Dahlan and Saeb Erekat.” Among Hamas candidates, it added, Ismail Haniyeh and Khaled Meshaal are the most popular to replace Ab-A$$, while among the independents the most popular is Rami Al-Hamdallah followed by Salam Fayyad.

“Two-thirds of the public support Hamas-Zionist indirect negotiations about a long term Hudna, or truce, in return for ending the siege of the Gaza Strip. But a majority believes that these negotiations will not succeed. A majority rejects the belief that such negotiations, even if they succeed, would harm the chances for reconciliation.”

The results also reveal that the Palestinian public does not view the PLO or its Executive Committee positively and declines to give it a mandate to make important decisions on behalf of all Palestinians. Instead, the public prefers to give such a mandate to the PA, even if the decisions in question relate to the permanent agreement with Israel. “This, though, does not mean that the public has considerable trust in the PA,”  said the centre. “On the contrary, a majority believes that it has become a burden on the Palestinian people and, for the first time since we started asking, a majority now demands the PA’s dissolution.”

Results also show that two-thirds of the public believe that the protection of Palestinians against settler terrorism is the responsibility of the PA, not the Israeli army. “Furthermore, two-thirds believe that the PA is not doing enough to protect Palestinian citizens. To protect Palestinian towns and villages targeted by settlers, the largest percentage has selected, from among several options, the deployment of the Palestinian security forces in those areas. The public believes that if the PA formally establishes civil guard units made up of volunteers in such areas, it would also help to provide protection. Indeed, half of West Bankers say that if such unarmed units were established, they would volunteer to join them.”

The survey was conducted on a random sample of 1,270 people in 127 locations in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

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