Archive | Syria

US Coalition attempts to trash Sochi talks crash and burn


…from Press TV, Tehran

The Saudi HNC rump group has failed to derail the political talks

[ Editor’s Note: The UN’s Guterres just pulled the rug out from under the whining claims that the Sochi talks were some kind of a rouge operation to knock the UN talks out of the box.

The claims were a complete hoax, first because Moscow was coordinating Sochi with the UN, publicly stating they were no attempt so replace the UN.

Because the UN talks had been bogged down by the Saudi High Negotiation Committee’s (HNC) efforts to keep the talks going nowhere by constantly demanding pre-conditions which the UN said were improper for anyone participating, Sochi was designed to get around that roadblock.

The opposition’s strategy can clearly be seen as an attempt to stall the political talks to give the US coalition time to crank up some new chaos in Syria to have them die of crib death. But it seems that the Erodgan invasion is one finger of that ploy.

The whole purpose of Sochi was not to solve all the problems, but get the process jump started and quite visibly so. The concluding twelve point statement was a home run in that regard, and the cherry on top was to move the next step in the process back to Geneva where De-Mistura would have the final say on some of the key items.

All this can in no way be claimed as excluding the UN from the process, which is exactly what the hard core opposition did. And the 1600 participants established a large and diverse representation of those wanting to mover forward.

It was also a show of force against the small group of deal killers like the HNC, that the majority would not be held hostage to their demands.

As I have editorialized, the critical focus now for a successful resolution to the Syrian crisis is to maintain momentum with the political process. The US Coalition obviously knows this so it is doing all it can to disrupt it. As Gordon does so love to say, “Welcome to how the world really works” … Jim W. Dean ]

The Sochi talks did what was needed, agree to a platform to move forward with more talks in Geneva. Maintaining momentum is the key to a political solution

– First published … February 03, 2018 –

United Nations (UN) Secretary General Antonio Guterres has rejected criticism of the world body’s participation at Syrian peace talks in the Russian resort city of Sochi, praising the outcome of the discussions.

Speaking at a press conference at the UN headquarters New York on Friday, Guterres said the presence of UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura “in Sochi was based on a common understanding between the United Nations and the Russian Federation on the nature and outcome of the meeting and its contribution to the [UN-mediated] Geneva process.”

“The congress concluded with a statement fully in line with that common understanding,” he added.

Russia, Iran, and Turkey have been organizing peace talks for Syria in the Kazakh capital of Astana since January 2017. Together, the three countries have been acting as guarantor states for the peace process.

Capitalizing on the achievements of Astana, Russia on January 29-30 convened a high-profile meeting on Syria — the Syrian Congress of National Dialog — in Sochi.

One Syrian opposition faction boycotted that meeting, and some non-political groups opposed to Damascus later accused the UN of “rewarding” Russia “upfront” by dispatching Special Envoy de Mistura to the event before securing concessions from Russia and the Syrian government.

Russia and Iran are Syrian government allies. Turkey is an ally of the Syrian opposition. The collective efforts of the three countries, including the brokering of agreements that have significantly reduced fighting in Syria, have made an impact on the ground in the Arab country.

In contrast, a peace process held under the auspices of the UN — that in Geneva — has achieved little. That has angered some Western and Arab governments opposed to the Syrian government and some groups of Syrian opposition backed by those governments. They insist that the Geneva process be given more importance despite its failure so far to make meaningful achievements.

Guterres appreciated Russia’s engagement with the UN regarding the Syria talks. He highlighted the key subjects of the 12-point final Sochi statement, saying that the document embraced a vision of Syria for all its citizens and underlined the need for the formation of a Constitutional Committee under UN auspices.

Around 1,600 delegates representing a wide range of Syrian political factions attended the Sochi talks. The event was boycotted by the High Negotiations Committee, which is based in and guided by Saudi Arabia.

Damascus welcomed the results of the event and stressed that its final statement affirmed that political progress in Syria cannot begin except under the Syrian leadership and without any foreign interference.

The Sochi conference took place just days after the ninth round of UN-led Syria talks failed to achieve tangible results. That round was exceptionally held in the Austrian capital, Vienna, instead of its usual venue of Geneva.

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U.S. and Turkey Agreed on the Assassination of Kurdish Politicians and Field Commanders


After Turkey had unleashed a military operation in the north of Syria it became clear that Erdogan is ready for decisive actions on this issue. On January 25, the Kurdish command initiated the redeployment of its troops from Deir Ezzor and Al Hasakah to the area of Manbij.

In response to these events, the American authorities began to seek for an output from a current situation. According to our sources in Afrin, Washington accepted the assassination of high-ranking and radical Kurdish field commanders and politicians with the help of the Turkish army in order to prevent further escalation of tension between NATO allies.

Commenting on the Anadolu reports on the redeployment of PYD/PKK fighters from several areas in northeastern Syria to Afrin, Pentagon spokesman Major Adrian Rankine-Galloway noted that the United States does not control the Syrian democratic forces, and only just provide them with support and make recommendations.

At the same time, the spokesman specified that if any YPG fighter leaves the battle against ISIS in order to participate in the Afrin operations, Kurds will lose U.S. support. Galloway clarified that this decision will be applied to the situation around Afrin and At Tanf.

Inside Syria Media Center continues to monitor the developments around Afrin. Probably, we should be ready for new victims. It is likely that some Kurdish politicians and field commanders will be assassinated. If this really happens, the U. S. will once again show that the Kurds are just a bargaining chip for them.

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America’s Contradictory Foreign Policy, Towards a Shooting War with Turkey in Syria?


The consequences of the contradictory choices of the United States in Syria are beginning to become apparent. The obsessive efforts to advance geopolitical goals with war, chaos, betrayals and shaky alliances has brought us to the recent events in Northern Syria on the border with Turkey in the Kurdish enclave of Afrin.

The overall picture of alliances and alignments, especially in Northern Syria, is not the simplest and needs some elaboration. The Kurds (PKK/YPG) in Syria are basically allies of the United States, using the territory under their control to train additional jihadists to spread chaos in the country. In particular, there are more than ten US military bases in Syria, violating all manner of international norms. According to the media, the Kurds are excellent fighters by virtue of their ability to fight Daesh. But looking at the situation more honestly, the collusion with Daesh by the US and allied countries in the region is evident, particular Israel, Saudi Arabia and the UAE’s involvement. The provision to Daesh of healthcare, weapons, logistics, intelligence, financial, and diplomatic support has never been lacking over the years. It seems evident that the Kurds (under the name of the SDF) often found easy accommodation with the Daesh terrorists, granting voluntary relocations to combatants in areas adjacent to the Syrian Arab Army (SAA). American and Israeli politicians and Generals have openly stated that it is not convenient to fight Daesh if this ends up benefitting Assad.

The Kurdish area in Syria is divided between the areas east and west of the Euphrates. The canton of Afrin is under Russian protection, both on the ground (Russian military police were present in Afrin until a few days ago) as well as in the air. The Kurdish area to the east of the Euphrates, which connects to Iraq, openly seeks independence, is under American control, and obviously threatens Syria’s territorial integrity. This is the result of an American strategic Plan B devised by Brookings in 2009 that continues to give hope to the neocons in Washington. But as we shall see, it is a forlorn hope.

The Kurdish entity located in the Afrin enclave fought with the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) in Aleppo in the liberation of the city. It also resisted the Turkish and Free Syrian Army (FSA) attack on Syria when Erdogan decided to create a buffer zone between the Afrin canton and the Kurds to the east of the Euphrates when advancing towards Azaz. Following the liberation of Aleppo, the relations between Damascus and the Kurds of Afrin saw some initial progress, thanks to Russian diplomacy. The temporary compromise between Damascus and the Kurds saw Moscow deploy a symbolic number of Russian military police to Afrin, with the much more important air defense being guaranteed by the operational range of the Russian S-400 air-defence systems deployed in Syria.

Meanwhile, the progress of the diplomatic and negotiating agreement between Ankara, Moscow and Tehran is bearing fruit, diminishing the importance of the Geneva peace talks on Syria as well as the areas controlled by the Americans, Europeans, Saudis and Qataris.

The events over the last few days are the combined results of the nefarious actions of the United States, the incompetence of the Kurds, and the superb diplomatic and strategic actions of Damascus and Moscow.

The starting point for Iran, Russia, Syria and Turkey concerns the territorial unity of Syria. The opposing countries are clearly the United States, Israel and Saudi Arabia. The Kurds of Rojava claim their independence, and therefore easily see themselves as allies of the United States, openly supported by Israel (in the case of the independence referendum) and even by the Saudis. Afrin’s Kurds are in a different position, which is why Moscow found itself faced with a perfect situation, the result of months of diplomatic work, allowing it to pull off a strategic trifecta. Moscow first called the Kurdish bluff, who refused to allow the Syrian Arab Army entry into Afrin and accept the canton’s return to the borders that preceded the chaos that started in 2011 (when the Kurds had in fact their important autonomy even if under the banner of Damascus). Moscow had probably guaranteed Erdogan that if the Kurds in Afrin refused entry of Damascus’s troops into the town, then Ankara’s military operation would be justified. Perhaps Putin could have persuaded Erdogan to postpone Operation Olive Branch, but he did not, and the reason has to do with the strategic considerations at play.

The objective of Damascus, Moscow and Tehran is to remove the United States from Syria. Of course they currently fight America’s proxies in the region, but the seedlings of chaos that have been sown in the country will have to be uprooted in the long term. Erdogan’s military action in the Afrin Region puts the interests of Washington and Ankara on a direct collision course. Erdogan is aware of what Putin is doing, but he is more interested in what Trump is doing with the Kurds along his border than with the territorial unity of Syria and Iraq.

Washington has its back against the wall, forced to defend a Kurdish ally against a key member of NATO, in the forlorn hope of retaining some significance in the Syrian picture. The weakness of the American position will lead to them abandoning their Kurdish ally to its fate at the hands of Moscow and Damascus, who will have all the necessary leverage with the Kurds to get what they want for the good of Syria. There are already rumors of Syrian army troops entering the town of Afrin at the invitation of the Kurds. The Kurds are denying it, but we will see how long they can resist Erdogan, who finds the road before him clear to force Washington to break with its Kurdish ally if a shooting war among NATO allies is to be avoided.

We can only imagine the thoughts and impressions in the chancelleries in much of the world as they observe Moscow’s diplomatic adroitness, able to secure the territorial integrity of Syria at the expense of two NATO members opposed to Assad.

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Supremacy of the Spectacle and Political Theater. Fomenting Engineered Perspectives


Western politicians have lost all legitimacy as representatives of their electorates. Regardless of the political party that they claim to represent, pre-scripted agendas prevail in matters of importance. Core issues of war and peace are submerged beneath lies and disappeared.

Spectacles and political theater mask widespread poverty[1] and the looting of public coffers. The agenda of permanent warfare and predatory economic models is unspoken but continuous.

Perception managers engineer public support for the toxic (shadow government) agendas.  Unelected deep state actors seek to obliterate truth from the public sphere.  Presumably, an informed public would negate the toxic agendas, but those who profit from war and misery are aware of this.

North Korea[2] is not a threat to us.  The U.S led war on Syria was never about combatting terrorism.

See this clip.

Russia is not a threat to us either. In every instance of post 9/11 warfare, target nations have been falsely presented as being threats, and the resultant warfare has been catastrophic, a genuine holocaust.

Debbie Lusignan, host of Sane Progressive demonstrates in the following episode that beneath the political theater, both US parties share the same toxic shadow government agenda.  The Russia Gate threat, for example, is baseless. There is no evidence to prove Russia’s interference in U.S elections (see 10:14- 14:16 of the video). But this hasn’t stopped both U.S parties from presenting Russia as an enemy.  Both parties and their agencies, including the media, seek war with Russia, and demonization campaigns serve to prepare populations for what should be unthinkable. Not only should permanent wars of aggression be an affront to informed citizens, but the siphoning of the public treasury to support such wars,to the detriment of the health and welfare of domestic populations, should also be an affront to our sanity.

As with Canada, people are conditioned to believe that different political parties offer largely different agendas, but the rhetoric masks the real agenda.Would political theater and Trump’s escapades attract so much attention if people were aware of their countries’ own economic and moral impoverishment?

Matters of significance are increasingly being displaced by matters of relative insignificance.  The engineered “spectacle” obliterates reality and replaces it with illusions.

How would a broad-based population react if they realized that our governments support al Qaeda and ISIS? Or that we support an illegal neo-Nazi infested regime in Kiev[1]?How would domestic populations react if they realized that their perceptions are engineered, that the threats of terrorism, of Russia, or Syriaand beyond are all engineered fabrications, bereft of evidence?

The answers to these questions remain elusive, precisely because an increasingly globalized shadow government governs us and it is their deceptive messaging that remains ascendant.


[1] Simeon Ari, In the U.S. 49.7 Million Are Now Poor, and 80% of the Total Population Is Near Poverty. Political Blindspot. 6 November, 2013. ( Accessed 31 January, 2018.

[2] Christopher Black,“The Genocide Conspiracy Against North Korea: An Open Letter to the International Criminal Court.” New Eastern Outlook. 26 January, 2018. ( Accessed.31 January, 2018.

[3] RT. “Hundreds of far-right vigilantes sworn in to ‘enforce Ukrainian order’ on Kiev’s streets (VIDEO).” 31 January, 2018. ( Accessed 31 January, 2018.

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Turkish Troops Seen Wearing Patch of Terrorist Free Syrian Army


Turkish soldiers have been seen wearing a patch of the Terrorist Free Syrian Army (FSA) on their uniforms while operating in Syria’s northwest canton of Afrin where they leading a coalition of militants against the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG). 

This comes as a Syrian MP has claimed that their are very few Turkish soldiers actually involved in operations against the YPG. Details can be read here.

It must be remembered that this means Turkish soldiers are wearing a patch of a flag that has on innumerable occasions been displayed needs to the like of ISIS and Al-Qaeda affiliated Al-Nusra.


Challenging the “Establishment”. The West Supports Terrorism

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U.S. ‘Plan B’ for the Middle East. The Occupation of One Third of Syria’s Territory


The television network RT asked me for a comment around the recent visit to Raqqa done by the USAID program chief together with the CENTCOM Commander. [1]

Before addressing the humanitarian situation in Raqqa associated with the reconstruction issue (80 percent of Raqqa dwellings remain “inhabitable”, according to the UN), I will focus on the current U.S. geopolitics in the area, against the backdrop of the U.S. emerging ‘Plan B’ on Syria. So far, the implementation of this new design has signified the virtual occupation of nearly a third of Syria’s territory. A hallmark of the situation consisting in the illegal occupation of Syrian territory by U.S. troops.

The first project of the US on Syria aimed to obtain a regime change. It was pretty much a “default” policy applied by the US in the Middle East at the times of the Obama / Hillary Clinton administration. Partly of its mechanism has been described by Senator Dick Clark (an excerpt of Senator Clark’s declarations is found in the video here below. Click on the image for the excerpt-footage).

The strategy of “regime change”, which can we call “U.S. Plan A on Syria”, failed.

The Syrian government –with help of its allies Russia, Iran and Hezbollah- instead continues victorious and unabated in its pursuit to retake the full sovereignty of its nation’s territory.

From a humanitarian angle, the failure of the said Plan A conveyed disastrous consequences. The number of fatalities due to the war in Syria have reached 400,000. To that, a massive displacement of refugees has to be added.

Furthermore, viewed in geopolitical and military terms, the strategy of establishing, funding, arming and training a miscellaneous jihadist opposition was also a setback, or even backfiring – as it ended fostering the combat capability of ISIS forces, through US armament which made its way to ISIS hands. (See The Hill report in the box below).

The optimism which emerged when Donald Trump became the U.S. president was of brief duration. The hope about a possible stop of US interference in Syria, based on Trump’s declarations while he was still a candidate, vanished when President Trump announced that he had delegated to the Pentagon and his Defense Minister Mattis, the tasks of profiling and give expression to U.S. military actions abroad. [2]

Unlike the situation during the Obama administration, it is now up to the Pentagon to decide specific targets and scope of military operations.

However, from a human rights perspective, the new Pentagon’s ‘free hands’ status has conveyed a high toll of civilian casualties as result of the extensive bombing by the US in Syria.

Anticipating the humanitarian catastrophe in the Syrian areas subjected by the US-led coalition’s bombardment, The New York Times reported in April 2017 that the US military had already increased the civilian casualties in Somalia and Yemen as the result of Pentagon’s new “free” doctrine. [3]

80% of Raqqa was left “uninhabitable” – UN

As a result of this new “rules of engagement” in the US bombing, the civilian population of Raqqa and areas around in northern Syria have suffered huge casualties.

New data processed by Airwars regarding non-combatant deaths caused by the US-led coalition during 2017, result in figures up to “6,102 civilians estimated killed”. [4] The organization remarks that the civilian fatalities of 2017 represent 65% of all civilian deaths caused by the Coalition, that have been recorded by Airwars since 2014.

This statistically significant increasing in the epidemiology of fatalities among civilians in areas bombarded by the US-led coalition, shows the impact of the new Trump doctrine of giving “free hand” to the military (which now assess by themselves the risk of civilian casualties resulting from their operations).

In Raqqa alone, during the lasted Coalition campaign to recapture the city from ISIS, the balance was an estimate of 1,800 civilian casualties. [5] And according to a UN report, 80% of Raqqa was left “uninhabitable” ensuing the battle. [6]

The priorities in “reconstructing” the battered city and territory around are instead militarily

The recent visit to Raqqa by the head of the USAID program, Mr Mark Green, accompanied by the chief of the U.S. Central Command, General Joseph Votel, was interpreted in some media as an on-site assessment for a future reconstruction plan of Raqqa –to be done by the U.S. government. It was otherwise noted that the visit constituted “the most senior U.S. civilian official of the Trump administration” in Raqqa, after the defeat of ISIS. [1]

In fact, the media reports on the visit focused mainly on declarations by the General Joseph Votel, who emerged as the central gestalt of the delegation.

What the western media failed to mention, is that three days before the visit of Votel and Green it was known that the US military had initiated the reconstruction of the formerly Syrian Air-force base at al-Tabqa, located near Raqqa. So, the exploration-visit in Raqqa and surrounding areas may have mainly been relevant to construction/reconstruction assessments of the said usurped military airbase in al-Tanf, which is legal property of Syria.

The Al-Tabqah Military Airbase (photo below) is not the only military compound that the US has unilaterally decided to establish. The other military base is situated in al-Tanf, near the border with Iraq. [7]

Regarding the kind of projects that USAID would be prone to support in the area, those will be definitely tied to the current US geopolitical project. That is what USAID is all about.

Propaganda-wise, the ‘Plan B’ geopolitical project rests on two premises which are under construction. One is the collapse of the peace talks in Geneva (and the corresponding boycott of the Sochi meeting) – see down below. The other premise is an expected international support for a direct military intervention in Syria (nearly, a deepening of the operations that have already started) motivated in staged “chemical attacks” massacres. [8]

One pivotal element in the staging of those “chemical-attack” false flags is the presence of “White Helmets” in those territories. The White Helmets and other “humanitarian” organizations financed by the U.S. have been the channels for delivering the “testimonies” from the staged scenarios.

The point being that USAID is one main financing source of the White Helmets and similar ‘humanitarian’ organizations operating in the propaganda campaign against Syria. [9] Naturally, a similar initiative implemented by USAID in the Syrian zones now under direct US military control or influence, can be expected.

One other classical role of USAID in that kind of ‘reconstruction’ endeavours has been the fostering and/or coordination of U.S. corporate investments profiting in such war-related areas –wars in which the US has had the initiative in bolstering. [10] And of course, the boost in exports of US products, even if this have resulted in detriment of the economic development of the ‘helped’ regions. [11]

Meanwhile in Washington. The US ‘Plan B’ on Syria is officially announced

Map from Anadolu Agency, published in Orient Net [18]

David M. Satterfield, Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs, is a representative voice of the Trump administration. Among other tasks, he was entrusted to lead the US delegation to the peace talks on Syria in Kazakhstan, September 2017. [12] So, when he is now declaring at the US Congress that the US has already an “alternative plan” in case the peace talks on Syria would not prosper, we have to attribute hos message a great relevance. Satterfield’s declarations are to be held as the tip of the iceberg regarding the US Plan B on Syria.

The Moon of Alabama reports: [13]

“Testifying before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Thursday, David Satterfield, the acting assistant secretary of state for Near Eastern affairs, outlined US goals in Syria as finishing off IS, stabilizing northeastern Syria and countering Iranian influence.”

And The Siver Times [14], as well as Kurdistan 24, report: [7]

“On Thursday, Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Near East Affairs, David Satterfield, revealed to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that the USA had an alternate plan for Syria, in the event that the UN-sponsored talks in Geneva failed to produce an agreement. “
Mr Satterfield (photo at left) could have instead very well said, “when the UN-sponsored talks in Geneva fail…”

I was in Geneva on the 28 of November, when the peace talks recommenced. From what I could gather, the US administration seemed rather to support the “dialogue-not-possible” stance of their political proxy forces.

And with regard to the Sochi talks, which really are an opportunity for a final Peace Settlement on Syria, Mr Satterfield has been prominent in the campaign opposing the event, nevertheless his arguments have been fact-based rebutted and demolished by Ms Maria Zakharova (photo below, at right). [15]

And, precisely as Ms Zakharova could anticipate already on January 12, today the “Syrian opposition” announced that they will not attend the Sochi talks.

In my interpretation, the US need the collapse of the peace talks as a pretext to advance and consolidate its occupation of Syria. And the ultimate geopolitical goal is not only the fragmentation of Syria.  By means of giving the the Kurdish administration the notion of sovereignty on the occupied territory, and have their proxies to “invite” the US forces in, the Pentagon plans to solve the gross legal problem of their unauthorized military staying in Syria.

The ultimate geopolitical aim is, however, the further utilization of the fragmented area (which constitutes about the third of Syria’s territory). Once that the ‘legal’ status in northern Syria has been achieved, the U.S. will stay to implement its goals to destabilize not only Syria, but also Iran, and converting the Middle East in its new backyard.

The U.S. and allied EU financial interests –for the occasion colluded with Saudi Arabia– will not end its warmongering pursuing until their long-time conceived oil-pipe project crystallizes.

And if that strategy in northern territories of Syria would fail –for instance due to developments in the Turkish offensive– the U.S. will try to enter in Syria from the South, most likely with help of “chemical-attack” false flags in the area. That is my interpretation after Tillerson’s announcing that US will not tolerate “more chemical attacks” by Syria. [16]

That the Trump administration, or to put it more appropriate, that the Pentagon has decided to aggressively confront Iran is not a speculation. The U.S. government has unequivocally declared that its troops will remain in Syria, regardless if ISIS would be completely defeated. [17]

The military occupation covering a third of Syria’s territory

The yellow part is about an area comprising estimated 11,583 square miles, which is the equivalent of a third of the territory of Syria.

Raghida Dergman, founder and Executive Chairman of Beirut Institute, recently wrote in Huffington post: [19]

“US presence in Syria is massive and involves thousands of troops in several strategic bases…The richest one-third of Syria’s territory is effectively under US control.”

A closer demographic look indicates that in the area lives nearly a quarter of the population of Syria.

How many U-S- troops are already in Syria is not possible to ascertain. When the U.s. government officially reported that there were 500 troops, the figure was instead 2,000 –as later acknowledged. Now that the official figure become 2,000 one could just wonder how many thousands that figure could mean in reality.

According to Orient News Net, which sourced its information in the Turkish Anadolu Agency, the above map would show the ten sites were U.S. troops were stationed by July 2017: “Two airbases, eight military points in PKK/PYD-controlled areas. US Special Forces located in military points in Hasakah, Raqqa and Manbij.” [18]

Another map published by Anadoluy Agency, dated 12 October 2017.

The RT questions

1. The Coalition said it will focus on restoring the basic needs in Raqqa (demining, clearing the roads, getting electricity, sewage and water). Do you think it’s enough for the refugees and former resident to return and come back to normal life in the city?

To clear out landmines and reestablish water and electricity is of course good, but way far from enough. The UN estimates that 80% of the houses were Raqqa inhabitants lived is now, I quote, “uninhabitable”. [6]

People cannot sleep over an electric wire or cover themselves with water. What the people need is the reconstruction of their houses, they need a roof, walls, etc. And it is not only about private dwellings. Services have to be restored, hospitals, schools, etc., which imply a profound reconstruction effort.

Michele Kelemen, NPR correspondent who traveled in Raqqa with the USAID program head, Mr Mark Green, and CENTCOM Commander, General Joseph Votel, declared in an interview, “They don’t call it nation building anymore. That’s for sure. They say that it’s stabilization.” [20]

My comment is that “Stabilization” is a geopolitical notion implying the ending of hostilities or at least the obtaining of a status quo. But what the US is doing in northern Syria is clearly the opposite, it is destabilization, and even implementing the territorial fragmentation of the country.

2. How the international community should approach the reconstruction of Raqqa?

The issue should be taken at UN different bodies, not only at the Security Council. Secondly, foreign-aid institutions at different richer countries, in Europe for instance, should be channel aid to a reconstruction fund established and administered by the EU.

3. Up to 80% of the city had been destroyed during the liberation from ISIL. In your opinion, who should bear the burden and lead the effort of rebuilding it?

A direct responsibility should be placed on those countries participating in the military coalition that bombed Raqqa and contributed to the destruction of 80% of the city dwellings.

To argue that is was ISIS the primarily responsible for the destruction of Raqqa, because the fight aimed to recapture the city from ISIS hands, it can hardly take away the responsibility of those who ordered the bombing. An aerial bombing and artillery that – viewing the destruction results– targeted residence houses and community institutions in a massive, seemingly indiscriminate fashion.

Another relevant issue here is to assess what responsibility the powers that decimated Raqqa had directly or indirectly in the establishment of ISIS and even in its weaponry.


This article was originally published by The Indicter.

Prof. Marcello Ferrada de Noli is professor emeritus of epidemiology (research focus on Injury epidemiology), medicine doktor i psykiatri (PhD, Karolinska Institute), and formerly Research Fellow  at Harvard Medical School. He is the founder and chairman of Swedish Professors and Doctors for Human Rightsand editor-in-chief of The Indicter. Also publisher of The Professors’ Blog, and CEO of Libertarian Books – Sweden. Author of “Sweden VS. Assange – Human Rights Issues.”


[1] Lesley Wroughton, “U.S. aid chief visits Raqqa amid stabilization push“. Reuters, 22 January 2018.

[2] Simon Tisdall, “Donald Trump’s hands-off approach gives US military free rein“. The Guardian, 14 June 12017.

[3] Helene Cooper, “Trump Gives Military New Freedom. But With That Comes Danger“. The New York Times, 5 April 2017.

[4] Alex Hopkins, “Airwars annual assessment 2017: civilians paid a high price for major Coalition gains“., 18 January 2018.

[5] Samuel Oakford, “More than 1,800 civilians killed overall in defeat of ISIS at Raqqa, say monitors.”, 19 Octobre 2017.

[6] Andrew Illingworth, “US-backed forces succeed in making Raqqa 80 percent “uninhabitable”.  AMN,  20 Octobre 2017.

[7] Lurie Mylroie, “US to establish two military bases in eastern Syria as tensions with Turkey rise.” Kurdistan 24, 17 January 2018.

[8] M Ferrada de Noli, “From Timisoara to Khan Shaykhun. Part I: The Staged-Massacre Routine for Regime Change“. The Indicter Magazine, 24 October 2017.

[9] “A closer look: Delivering critical supplies to Syrians“. Devex, 8 September 2015.

[10] Andrey Panevin, “Corporations Are The New Conquistadors : Ukraine“. MintPress News, 19 February 2015.

[11] Julie Lévesque, “Haiti, Five Years After the Earthquake: Fraudulent Reconstruction Under Military Occupation“. Global Research, 15 January 2015.

[12] U.S. Dept of State, Office of the Spokesperson, “Acting Assistant Secretary of State David M. Satterfield Travel to Astana, Kazakhstan for Talks on Syria“. 12 September 2017.

[13] “Syria – U.S. Traps Itself , Commits To Occupation, Helps To Sustain The Astana Agreement“. Moon of Alabama, 15 January 2018.

[14] “Iran denounces USA ‘conspiracy’ against Syria“. The Siver Times, 17 January 2018.

[15] See “Remarks by David Satterfield, Acting Assistant Secretary of State, Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs”, in “Briefing by Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova, Moscow, January 12, 2018“.

[16] Sara Elizabeth Williams, “Rex Tillerson blames Russia for Syrian ‘chemical weapons’ attacks“. The Telegraph, 23 January 2018.

|17] Gardiner Harris, “Tillerson Says U.S. Troops to Stay in Syria Beyond Battle With ISIS“. The New York Times, 17 January 2018.

[18] “AA’s map of US bases in Syria infuriates Pentagon“. Orient News Net, 20 July 2017.

[19] “The point of separation between the US and Russia in Syria”., 13 January 2018.

[20] Michele Kelemen, “What The U.S. Presence Is Doing In Raqqa Despite Wishes Of Syrian Government“. NPR – National Public Radio, 22 January 2018.

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Tillerson’s Promise of More War in Syria Gets Warm Reception from Corporate Media


In a speech at Stanford this month, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson declared that America intends to keep military troops in Syria indefinitely, in pursuit of the US’s “key end states for Syria,” including “post-Assad leadership,” the marginalization of Iran and the elimination of “weapons of mass destruction” that the US claims Syria has.

Occupying a country without the permission of the host government, as America is doing in Syria, contravenes international law. Nor does the US have a legal right to pursue regime change in Syria. Yet multiple media outlets have praised Tillerson’s remarks.

Newsweek (1/19/18) ran an article from the Atlantic Council’s Frederic Hof that called Tillerson’s speech “a major improvement in the American approach to the crisis in Syria.” The piece concluded that “what Mr. Tillerson has articulated is more than good enough as a starting point for a policy reflecting American values and upholding American interests.”

WaPo: Tillerson Tells the Truth About Syria

Washington Post (1/22/18): Tillerson will break with Obama’s Syria policies by maintaining the occupation of Syria started by Obama.

The Washington Post editorial board (1/22/18) also endorsed American violation of international law, writing that

Tillerson bluntly recognized a truth that both President Trump and President Barack Obama attempted to dodge: that “it is crucial to our national defense to maintain a military and diplomatic presence in Syria, to help bring an end to that conflict, and assist the Syrian people . . . to achieve a new political future.”

The same paper’s Jennifer Rubin (1/23/18) wrote:

Belatedly, Tillerson has recognized (as critics of both Trump and President Barack Obama have long argued) that we do have a national interest in Syria, cannot tolerate the indefinite presence of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and need to recognize that if we mean to check Iranian aggression, we will need to maintain a presence in Syria.

In Rubin’s conception, Iran’s presence in Syria—at the request of the recognized government—is “aggression,” whereas America’s is apparently legitimate.

The Atlantic (1/18/18) published a piece by Kori Schake, a self-identified supporter of “regime change [and] long-term military commitments.” Schake called Tillerson’s speech

both sensible and fanciful. It was sensible in that it gave a history of Syria’s grisly war, stated clearly America’s interest in continued involvement even as ISIS is defeated, and outlined policies consistent with those interests. It was fanciful in that the policies outlined would require a much greater measure of American involvement than has been in evidence by this administration—or were committed in yesterday’s speech—to succeed.

For Schake, the problem isn’t that the goal of America’s Syria policy is to illegally occupy a country and overthrow its government, while ratcheting up already dangerously high levels of hostility towards Iran and Russia. It’s that that the Trump administration isn’t doing enough to achieve this.

Meanwhile, accounts of Tillerson’s speech on CNN (1/18/18) and Buzzfeed (1/18/18) opt not to make any reference to the absence of a legal basis for what he describes. One of the few allusions of any kind to international law was a throwaway line in an AP report (1/24/18): “The Islamic State’s retreat also has forced the US to stretch thinner its legal rationale for operating in Syria.” What that rationale might consist of was not explained.

The Best Way to End War Is More War

Tillerson is proposing a prolongation and escalation of the war in Syria. The Syrian government will not passively allow itself to be removed by the US military, and neither will Syria’s allies from Russia, Iran and Hezbollah. So in practice, Tillerson’s policy means a wider, more dangerous conflict.

Yet the Newsweek piece (1/19/18) accepts that the plan is aimed at creating “conditions suitable for the return of refugees and internally displaced persons to their homes”—the opposite of what war produces.

Not only are media outlets failing to address the violence implicit in Tillerson’s policy, they are claiming the opposite and treating it as a plan for peace in Syria. These articles do not explain how a US-led regime change war will achieve that, instead of the years of war and slave markets such policies brought to Libya, or the half million to a million civilians killed in Iraq.

These publications take for granted that the US has a right to decide who governs Syria. For example, an Atlantic article by Paul McLeary (1/18/18) characterizes the US plan to maintain an occupying force in Syria and compel the ouster of its government as “nation-building,” though “nation-destroying” is probably more apt.

Atlantic: America Quietly Starts Nation-Building in Parts of Syria

For The Atlantic (1/18/18), attempting to divide a nation is called “nation building.”

The Washington Post (1/22/18), similarly, echoes Tillerson’s claim that if the US were to “abandon” Syria, it would be “repeat[ing] the mistake the United States made in Iraq,” when “a premature departure . . . allowed Al Qaeda in Iraq to survive and eventually morph into ISIS.” The Post missed the possibility that the US’s “mistake” in Iraq was invading in the first place, one consequence of which was the birth of both Al Qaeda in Iraq and ISIS.

The paper also claims:

Critics predictably charge that Mr. Trump is launching another “endless war” in Syria. In fact, the administration has simply recognized reality: The United States cannot prevent a resurgence of Al Qaeda and the Islamic State, prevent Iran from building bases across Syria, or end a civil war that has sent millions of refugees toward Europe without maintaining control over forces and territory inside the country.

The editors go on to write that the Trump administration “has rightly absorbed the lesson that [America’s] way out [of Syria] starts with a serious and sustainable US commitment.”

In other words, the best way for the US to get out of Syria is to stay in Syria, and the best way to end the war in Syria is more war in Syria.

Posted in USA, Syria0 Comments

Who is using chlorine as a chemical weapon in Syria?

Image result for chemical weapon in Syria CARTOON
By Charles Shoebridge 

Former Scotland Yard detective Charles Shoebridge explains why claims of chlorine attacks in Syria should be treated with caution.

The alleged use of chlorine as a weapon in Syria is back in the news in the US and UK, with fresh incidents reported and US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson taking the opportunity within the last few days to condemn Syrian President Bashar Assad over the issue. Unusually, he also later appeared to concede there may be some doubt – but asserted anyway that “whoever conducted the attacks Russia bears responsibility.”

So how does the alleged evidence that the Syrian government is carrying out chlorine attacks stack up?

Some years ago I pointed out the still rarely commented upon apparent correlation between the timing of chlorine incidents and the holding of important international gatherings on Syria, such as UN Security Council meetings. If the chlorine claims were true, it seemed that Assad for some reason was deliberately timing his attacks to best hand his opponents a propaganda advantage and to mobilize the world against him. Another explanation, perhaps more likely yet never mentioned in the Western media, was that to achieve this aim these incidents were actually false flags his opponents were fabricating.

The recent allegations seem similar in this respect, coinciding exactly with many world leaders including Tillerson meeting in Paris to discuss chemical weapons, and just as a Syrian government operation to clear eastern Ghouta of US- and UK-backed rebel forces allied with groups associated with al Qaeda is underway.

Regardless of factual basis, claims of chlorine use, along with those of barrel bombs and attacks on hospitals, have been one of the most enduring propaganda memes of the Syria war.

Yet while headlines of chemical weapons are undoubtedly dramatic, the relatively low lethality of chlorine makes it an ineffective – and therefore arguably also unlikely – choice of weapon. Tillerson’s own comments bear this out. He spoke of twenty people being injured in an incident the day before, yet if ‘ordinary’ explosive bombs of the sort used not only by Russia and Syria but also by the US for example in Raqqa and Mosul had been used instead of chlorine, the effect on civilians in terms of both fear and fatalities would certainly have been very much worse.

Indeed, given the low toxicity of the allegedly small amounts used and the unpleasant bleach smell that always betrays chlorine’s presence, in most instances people could avoid being killed by simply walking away – another indication of its near uselessness as a weapon. Perhaps the only way it could be tactically effective is if used to drive people from trenches or bunkers to allow them to then be killed with bombs and bullets – but again, the amounts of chlorine needed would be far more than is alleged, and the accuracy needed to target in this way is unlikely to be achieved using unguided rockets as alleged this week in east Ghouta, or by dropping a ‘barrel bomb’ from a helicopter. Also, there has been little if any evidence offered or claims made of this tactic being used.

Given the above, it’s hardly surprising that First World War commanders who tried using chlorine as a weapon even in very high concentrations soon learned there were much more effective ways to kill. Indeed, this was one of the reasons why, when being pressured by US and UK politicians, media and NGOs to take action against Assad, even President Obama expressed skepticism, acknowledging that “chlorine isn’t historically a chemical weapon.”

Nonetheless, Western governments and media regularly cite a joint report by the UN and the world’s chemical weapons watchdog, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), that suggested Syria government forces were responsible for three chlorine attacks that took place in 2014 and 2015.

Perhaps as a PR tactic, the OPCW report prior to its public release was leaked to the media and other organizations sympathetic to the US and UK’s Syria narrative. The media then published selected excerpts alongside headlines suggesting that the OPCW investigation had proved Assad was using chlorine as a chemical weapon – and hence was in breach of the Chemical Weapons Convention, to which Syria since 2013 has been a signatory.

When the report was publicly released, a story of far less certainty emerged – a story that didn’t appear in US or UK media not only because it wasn’t helpful to US or UK policy, but also because with the selective leaks having dominated previous headlines, the release of the actual report was no longer considered newsworthy.

As one might expect from professional investigators, the OPCW report contains numerous caveats and reservations that cast doubts on its conclusions. For example, the report acknowledges that while evidence was “sufficient” in three of nine cases to allow a conclusion to be drawn that Syrian government forces had used chlorine, it also confirms that in none of these cases was this evidence “overwhelming” or even “strong.”

Such evidence included testimony from doctors who had witnessed chlorine symptoms but couldn’t know for sure how the chlorine had been delivered, even less by whom. Residents described hearing a helicopter at the time of the incidents, consistent with a helicopter dropping chlorine. Yet unmentioned by the report, this would also be consistent with chlorine being deliberately released by another party upon hearing a helicopter overhead, thereby encouraging a link to Syria government forces to be presumed.

In respect of this linkage, given that over many years a large number of “chlorine barrel bombs” have allegedly been dropped, it’s perhaps surprising in the course of a war in which almost everything is captured on video that no direct video proof of a helicopter dropping chlorine seems to have been recorded. Indeed, when on Twitter I asked for such helicopter linkage evidence, the only ‘proof’ I received was this animated video.

Crucially, and again wholly ignored by most US and UK media, the OPCW report itself highlights its own weaknesses, stating for example that the investigations were affected by the lack of a chain of custody for evidential material, the use of second or even third hand sources, the supplying by some parties of misleading information, and the difficulty of finding independent witnesses (page 8 of the report)

The report also found that some alleged impact locations had been altered, in some cases it appearing that munition remnants had been taken from elsewhere and placed at the alleged impact location (page 12)

Such a weak evidential basis and the possibility of fabrication have been apparent for years, yet overlooked by Western media and NGOs in their enthusiasm to promote an anti-Assad narrative. In what may be an example of this, what appears here to be bright green flare or signal smoke is claimed by rebels to be chlorine – a claim then repeated by western journalists and human rights groups despite the fact that some rudimentary research would have told them that heavier-than-air chlorine is unlikely to rise as the video shows.

Fabrication even involving real chlorine would be relatively straightforward because chlorine is in such wide use, for example for water purification, that as the OPCW report notes it is readily available to all parties in Syria. Furthermore, as the OPCW also note, al Nusra rebels seized and for a long period occupied a major Syrian chemical plant, from which much of the stored chlorine has disappeared and never been accounted for.

Along with the testimony of doctors and residents, the OPCW report also relies heavily on the witness statements of what are called “first responders,” but who are better known as the White Helmets – funded by, among others, the UK government’s secret security fund, and responsible not only for a continuous stream of anti-Assad propaganda, but also in many cases being the main ‘witnesses’ to atrocities ranging from chemical attacks to air strikes on aid convoys alleged by them to have been carried out by Assad. For any professional investigator who has followed the development of the White Helmets since their founding by a former UK army officer in 2013, such ‘witnesses’ could never be considered impartial, objective or credible.

Not only did the White Helmets provide much of the direct witness evidence of the alleged chlorine attacks but also, because the OPCW investigators weren’t able to visit any of the attack sites, it seems these ‘first responders’ also played a major part in producing the testimony of other witnesses, as well as producing and securing purported physical evidence. From the perspective of the integrity of an investigation, it’s hard to imagine anything more damaging than its effective outsourcing to an organization that, with their close working relationship with rebels including some linked with al Qaeda, has every interest in not only blaming incidents on Assad, but also a clear incentive to perhaps fabricate those incidents. Indeed, on many occasions the White Helmets have been accused of such fabrication, including in relation to chlorine.

It’s of course possible that the Syrian military is using chlorine as a chemical weapon. But if so, and notwithstanding years of allegations, no strong proof of this has yet emerged – even less a military or political motive as to why they would do so, or in any case of a direct link to Assad.

For the rebels and their powerful Western and Gulf Arab government supporters however, there exists a clear incentive to fabricate chemical weapons incidents for propaganda purposes – not only to push for western military intervention or a no fly zone that would seriously hinder the advance of government troops, but also to reinforce demands that Assad shouldn’t be a future leader of Syria, irrespective of the decisions of the Syrian people in any potential future elections.

Alleged chlorine attacks are also, as Tillerson showed, a useful tool to disparage and condemn Russia as being responsible for war crimes, regardless of the fact that Russia has proposed a new, comprehensive chemical weapons investigation – which the US has rejected, perhaps fearing what a far reaching, truly objective investigation might find.

In any event, claims of Syria government use of chlorine and other war crimes are likely to continue – not least perhaps because, despite the lack of a motive or any solid proof, a generally compliant, unsceptical and uncritical Western media will likely continue to report such claims as if they are unquestionably true.

Charles Shoebridge is an international politics graduate, lawyer, broadcaster and writer. He has formerly served as an army officer, Scotland Yard detective and counter terrorism intelligence officer.

Read more:

US mounts its moral high horse to spin yet another ‘convenient’ chemical attack

Moscow slams US ‘propaganda attack’ over Syria chemical weapons ahead of Sochi peace talks

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Trump’s Announced Strategy for Occupying Syria


“The President has committed, as a matter of strategy, that we will not leave Syria. We are not going to declare victory and go. And that is not my opinion; that’s the President’s strategic judgment. We’re going to stay for several reasons: stabilization and assistance in the vital north and northeast, protection of our allies the Syrian Democratic Forces, who have fought so valiantly against ISIS in the northeast, try to work to help transform the political structures in that area to a model for the rest of Syria, and capable of being credibly represented in a new Syrian state; but for other reasons as well, including countering Iran and its ability to enhance its presence in Syria, and serving as a weight or force helping us to achieve some of those broader objectives.”

That’s as spoken by David M. Satterfield, Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs, and Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs, U.S. Department of State, 11 January 2018, addressing the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, on the topic of “U.S. Policy Toward Syria.” You can see it in this clip from C-Span.

His statement hasn’t been reported in U.S. newsmedia; so, it’s still news; and this means that it’s news to the American people, and to all others who, though this news wasn’t reported to them, trust U.S. media to report any important American news (such as this U.S. Government policy-statement to the U.S. Senate certainly is). 

Parts of this clip have been reported by the independent journalist Mutlu Civiroglu on twitter, and, from there to reddit, and also at Russia Defense Forum, and at the excellent general news site Signs Of The Times, where I came upon it, and whose reporter Joe Quinn contrasted this statement with a tweet from Donald Trump as a Presidential candidate on 5 Sep 2013:

“Again, to our very foolish leader, do not attack Syria — if you do, many very bad things will happen & from that fight the U.S. gets nothing!”

The many people who had voted for Trump because of such anti-neoconservative (otherwise-called anti-imperialist) statements from him as that (and which thus also caused neocons to gang up against him in 2016 and publicly to support the overtly neocon Hillary Clinton instead), can reasonably raise the question as to whether a country in which people (such as Trump has done on this matter) routinely lie their way into elective offices, constitutes a democracy, or is instead actually a dictatorship of lies, by liars — and, if it’s the latter, then the inevitable questions are: 1: Whom are those liars actually serving; and, 2: Are the media also serving those same people and therefore hiding such crucial news as this U.S. Government policy-statement certainly is.

Furthermore, anyone to whom this official statement that was made to U.S. Senators on January 11th by the U.S. Government comes as news (and as news which still hasn’t yet been reported — much less debated — in America’s existing ‘news’ media) might reasonably cease subscribing to and paying and otherwise subsidizing those fake ‘news’ media, and instead start to seek out and subsidize honest ones such as the present site where you’re now reading this important news, so as not to be drowned by the propaganda and deceptions from whomever the people are who hide from the public the real news (such as this). Whereas the mainstream media, and even small media that serve the same owners, attack ‘fake news’, they’re actually reporting a lot of fake news themselves, and are hiding this fact from their subscribers. That fact presents a challenge to each person in their audience, as to whether to do whatever that individual can, to overcome this regime, and how to do it.

Just in case it might possibly be the case that U.S. and allied newsmedia have, ever since January 11th, failed to report this important news due only to their incompetence instead of in order to suppress it, the present news-report, including its links, and most especially the link here to the C-Span clip, is being submitted free of charge to all of them, so as to inform them all, of this important news; so that, going forward from now, all newsmedia that fail to report it are definitely suppressing it, and so that every reader who somehow does encounter it, can know with certainty, that the ‘news’media that don’t are actively and intentionally suppressing this news-item. All newsmedia are now being informed of, and linked to, that C-Span clip; so, all of them now know of its existence and can write about it. And, of course, everyone knows of its importance; so, there will be no excuse for not reporting on it, at least from the present time forward.

Posted in USA, Syria0 Comments

Nazi regime Seeks to Use Free Syrian Army to Establish 40km Deep ‘Safe Zone’ in Southern Syria

Israel Seeks to Use Free Syrian Army to Establish 40km Deep ‘Safe Zone’ in Southern Syria

Israel is using several Free Syrian Army (FSA) groups in a three phases-plan to impose a 40km-deep ‘safe zone’ in southern Syria, the Intercept reported on January 23.

According to the report, Israel already accomplished the first phase of its plan and it is currently working with different Israeli and American NGOs to accomplish the second phase. The goal of this effort is to push Lebanese Hezbollah and the Iranian-backed forces 40km away from the Israeli border. An unnamed officer of the FSA told the Intercept that Israel is even willing to push these forces “as far back as Hama.”

A unnamed Syrian Arab Army (SAA) source revealed to the intercept that a small group of Israeli Army and intelligence personnel entered the western Dara countryside in July 2017 and met with commanders of the two FSA groups – Liwa Jaydour and Jaysh al-Ababil.

In September 2017, another meeting between Israeli representatives and commanders of Liwa Jaydour, the Golan Knights and the Syrian Revolutionaries Front took place in the border town of Rafid in the southern Quneitra countryside, according to the Intercept.

Israel Seeks To Use Free Syrian Army To Establish 40km Deep 'Safe Zone' In Southern Syria – Report

Abu Ahmad, a Syrian opposition activist, confirmed to the Intercept that several FSA groups in southern Syria are currently getting money and weapons from the Israeli side, especially after the US Military Operation Center (MOC) in Jordan had suspended its military support for FSA groups.

“Jordan stopped sending them weapons, so they turned to Israel instead,” Abu Ahmad told the Intercept.

The Intercept report also revealed that the Israeli Army started training and equipping a border police force of around 500 FSA fighters from the Golan Knights group as a part of the second phase of the Israeli safe zone plane. This border force is expected to patrol the separation of forces line from south of the government-held Druze town of Hadar through FSA-held towns of Jabata Khashab, Bir Ajam, Hamadiyah, and Quneitra, all the way to Rafid in the southern Quneitra countryside, according to the report.

This was not the first time when the coordination between Israel and FSA groups in southern Syria became public. On December 2, 2017 the Syrian pro-opposition news outlet Enab Baladi revealed that the FSA and the Israeli Army are preparing a joint attack on the ISIS-affiliated Khalid ibn al-Walid Army in the western Daraa countryside.

The FSA-Israeli joint attack may be launched in the end of January, according to several oppositions sources, and it’s possible that this effort is a part of Israeli’s safe zone plane.

Israel could indirectly control the FSA groups in southern Syria and eliminate the ISIS threat in the western Daraa countryside. Hwever, it will be much more complicated to establish a 40km-wide safe zone in southern Syria because the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) controls large parts of Daraa governorate, including more than half of the city of Daraa.

Posted in ZIO-NAZI, Syria0 Comments

Shoah’s pages


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