Archive | August 4th, 2016

When AFRICOM Evaluates Itself, the News Is Grim


By Nick Turse

Army Gen. David M. Rodriguez, outgoing commander of U.S. Africa Command, incoming Africom commander, Marine Gen. Thomas D. Waldhauser, and Marine Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr., chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, bow their heads during AFRICOM change of command ceremony at U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart, Germany, July 18, 2016.Army Gen. David M. Rodriguez, outgoing commander of US Africa Command (AFRICOM), incoming Africom commander, Marine Gen. Thomas D. Waldhauser and Marine Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr., chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, bow their heads during an AFRICOM change-of-command ceremony at US Army Garrison Stuttgart, Germany, July 18, 2016. (Photo: Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Dominique A. Pineiro / DoD)

It’s rare to hear one top military commander publicly badmouth another, call attention to his faults, or simply point out his shortcomings. Despite a seemingly endless supply of debacles from strategic setbacks to quagmire conflicts since 9/11, the top brass rarely criticize each other or, even in retirement, utter a word about the failings of their predecessors or successors. Think of it as the camouflage wall of silence. You may loathe him. You may badmouth him behind closed doors. You may have secretly hoped for his career to implode. But publicly point out failures? That’s left to those further down the chain of command.

And yet that’s effectively exactly what newly installed U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) chief, General Thomas Waldhauser, did earlier this year in a statement to the Senate Arms Services Committee (SASC). It’s just that no one, almost certainly including Waldhauser himself, seemed to notice or recognize it for the criticism it was, including the people tasked with oversight of military operations and those in the media.

Over these last years, the number of personnel, missions, dollars spent, and special ops training efforts as well as drone bases and other outposts on the continent have all multiplied. At the same time, incoming AFRICOM commanders have been publicly warning about the escalating perils and challenges from terror groups that menace the command’s area of operations. Almost no one, however — neither those senators nor the media — has raised pointed questions, no less demanded frank answers, about why such crises on the continent have so perfectly mirrored American military expansion.

Asked earlier this year about the difficulties he’d face if confirmed, Waldhauser was blunt: “A major challenge is effectively countering violent extremist organizations, especially the growth of al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, Boko Haram in Nigeria, al-Shabaab in Somalia, and ISIL in Libya.”

That should have been a déjà vu moment for some of those senators. Three years earlier, the man previously nominated to lead AFRICOM, General David Rodriguez, was asked the same question. His reply was suspiciously similar: “A major challenge is effectively countering violent extremist organizations, especially the growth of Mali as an al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb safe haven, Boko Haram in Nigeria, and al-Shabaab in Somalia.”

All that had changed between 2013 and 2016, it seemed, was the addition of one more significant threat.

In the midst of Rodriguez’s 2016 victory lap (as he was concluding 40 years of military service), Waldhauser publicly drew attention to just how ineffective his run as AFRICOM chief had been. Some might call it unkind — a slap in the face for a decorated old soldier — but perhaps turnabout is fair play. After all, in 2013, Rodriguez did much the same to his predecessor, General Carter Ham, when he offered his warning about the challenges on the continent.

Three years before that, in 2010, Ham appeared before the same committee and said, “I believe that the extremist threat that’s emerging from East Africa is probably the greatest concern that Africa Command will face in the near future.” Ham expressed no worry about threats posed by al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb or Boko Haram. ISIL in Libya didn’t even exist. And even that “greatest concern,” al-Shabaab, was, Ham noted, “primarily focused on internal matters in Somalia.”

In other words, over these last years, each incoming AFRICOM commander has offered a more dismal and dire assessment of the situation facing the U.S. military than his predecessor. Ham drew attention to only one major terror threat, Rodriguez to three, and Waldhauser to four.

His Own Worst Critic

That said, Waldhauser isn’t the only AFRICOM chief to point a finger at Rodriguez’s checkered record. Another American general cast an even darker shadow on the outgoing commander’s three-year run overseeing Washington’s shadow war in Africa:

“AFRICOM’s priorities on the continent for the next several years will be… in East Africa to improve stability there. Most of that is built around the threat of al-Shabaab. And then, in the North and West Africa is really built around the challenges from Libya down to northern Mali and that region and that instability there creates many challenges… And then after that is the West Africa, really about the Boko Haram and the problem in Nigeria that is, unfortunately, crossing the boundary into Cameroon, Chad, and Niger. So those are the big challenges and then just the normal ones that continue to be a challenge are the Gulf of Guinea… as well as countering the Lord’s Resistance Army…”

That critic was, in fact, General David Rodriguez himself in an AFRICOM promotional video released on multiple social media platforms last month. It was posted on the very day that his command also touted its “more than 30 major exercises and more than 1,000 military to military engagements” between 2013 and 2015. It was hardly a surprise, however, that these two posts and the obvious conclusion to be drawn from them — just how little AFRICOM’S growing set of ambitious continent-wide activities mattered when it came to the spread of terror movements — went unattended and uncommented upon.

Waldhauser and Rodriguez have not, however, been alone in pointing out increased insecurity on the continent. “Terrorism and violent extremism are major sources of instability in Africa,” Assistant Secretary Linda Thomas-Greenfield of the State Department’s Bureau of African Affairs told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in May. “Terrorist organizations such as al-Shabaab, Boko Haram (which now calls itself the Islamic State in West Africa), al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), and al-Murabitoun are conducting asymmetric campaigns that cause significant loss of innocent life and create potentially long-term humanitarian crises.”

National intelligence director James Clapper, who called the continent “a hothouse for the emergence of extremist and rebel groups” in 2014, spoke of the dangers posed by the Lord’s Resistance Army and al-Shabaab, as well as terror threats in Egypt, Libya, Mali, Nigeria, and Tunisia, and instability in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Republic of Congo, Burundi, the Central African Republic, and South Sudan before the Senate Armed Services Committee earlier this year.

And then there’s Brigadier General Donald Bolduc who heads Special Operations Command Africa (SOCAFRICA), the most elite U.S. troops on the continent. He painted a picture that was grimmer still. Last November, during a closed door presentation at the annual Special Operations Command Africa Commander’s Conference in Garmisch, Germany, the SOCAFRICA chief drew attention not just to the threats of al-Shabaab, al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, Boko Haram, ISIL, and the Lord’s Resistance Army, but also another “43 malign groups” operating in Africa, according to another set of documents obtained via the Freedom of Information Act.

The growth of terror groups from the one named by Ham in 2010 to the 48 mentioned by Bolduc in 2015 is as remarkable as it has been unremarked upon, a record so bleak that it demands a congressional investigation that will, of course, never take place.

Questions Unasked, Questions Unanswered

U.S. Africa Command boasts that it “neutralizes transnational threats” and “prevents and mitigates conflict,” while training local allies and proxies “in order to promote regional security, stability, and prosperity.” Rodriguez’s tenure was, however, marked by the very opposite: increasing numbers of lethal terror attacks across the continent including those in Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, and Tunisia. In fact, data from the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism at the University of Maryland shows that attacks have spiked over the last decade, roughly coinciding with AFRICOM’s establishment. In 2007, just before it became an independent command, there were fewer than 400 such incidents annually in sub-Saharan Africa. Last year, the number reached nearly 2,000.

While these statistics may be damning, they are no more so than the words of AFRICOM’s own chiefs. Yet the senators who are supposed to provide oversight haven’t seemed to bat an eye, let alone ask the obvious questions about why terror groups and terror attacks are proliferating as U.S. operations, bases, manpower, and engagement across the continent grow. (Note that this is, of course, the same Senate committee that Rodriguez misled, whether purposefully or inadvertently, earlier this year when it came to the number of U.S. military missions in Africa without — again — either apparent notice or any repercussions.)

In an era of too-big-to fail generals, an age in which top commanders from winless wars retire to take prominent posts at influential institutions and cash in with cushy jobs on corporate boards, AFRICOM chiefs have faced neither hard questions nor repercussions for the deteriorating situation. (Similar records — heavy on setbacks, short on victories — have been produced by Washington’s war chiefs in Afghanistan and Iraq for the past 15 years and they, too, have never led to official calls for any sort of accountability.)

Rodriguez is now planning on resting at his northern Virginia home for a few months and, as he told Stars and Stripes, seeing “what comes next.”

U.S. Africa Command failed to respond to multiple requests for an interview with Rodriguez, but if he follows in the footsteps of the marquee names among fellow retired four-stars of his generation, like David Petraeus and Stanley McChrystal, he’ll supplement his six-figure pension with one or more lucrative private sector posts.

What comes next for AFRICOM will play out on the continent and in briefings before the Senate Armed Services Committee for years to come. If history is any guide, the number of terror groups on the continent will not decrease, the senators will fail to ask why this is so, and the media will follow their lead.

During his final days in command, AFRICOM released several more short videos of Rodriguez holding forth on varioius issues. In one of the last of these, the old soldierpraised “the whole team” for accomplishing “a tremendous amount over the last several years.” What exactly that was went unsaid, though it certainly wasn’t achieving AFRICOM’s mandate to “neutraliz[e] transnational threats.” But what Rodriguez said next made a lot of sense. He noted that AFRICOM wasn’t alone in it — whatever it was. Washington, D.C., he said, had played a key role, too. In that, he couldn’t have been more on target. The increasingly bleak outlook in Africa can’t simply be laid at the feet of AFRICOM’s commanders. Again and again, they’ve been upfront about the deteriorating situation. Washington has just preferred to look the other way.

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The US Must Stop Humiliating I$raHell


[Ed. Note: The US must stop once and for all humiliating Israel. Just read the article below to see how absurd this humiliation is, going back for decades. “Negotiations”… what’s to negotiate? Every few years Israel is forced to behave as if it were a supplicant, grateful for the largesse of its benefactor. More often than not, the “aid package” is insufficient for Israel’s defense needs, and “negotiations” ensue to up it. Who does Obama, or for that matter any US president, think he is? Israel is not only the civilized world’s bulwork against Islamic terrorism, it is also the fulcrum of Jewish Power (JP) worldwide. The US Congress understands this: the standing ovations Netanyahu received when he addressed them prove it. Who owns the US finances? The so-called American people or JP? Who owns the Media? Who owns the Congress? America is just the enforcer of JP’s will worldwide. Why go through this song and dance of the “aid package” every few years? It is never sufficient anyway and must always be supplemented with Iron Dome this and Whatever that. Pathetic. Let Israel once and for all decide how much it needs and when, and feel free to help itself from the Treasury Department. Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew (rhymes with “jew”) is there to assist. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen (internal rhyme) can always lend the Treasury Dept whatever it needs to facilitate the transfer. Time to end the charade.]

Obama Offers Israel Biggest Military Package Ever, But Netanyahu Wants More 

By Sergey Guneev

Brig. Gen. Yaakov Nagel, the acting head of Israel’s National Security Council, will arrive in Washington next week to conduct a final round of negotiations over US aid package to Israel – the largest one that the US has ever given to any country – with instructions to sign the deal “as soon as possible”. So what’s the rush for Israel?

The personal relations between US President Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have been somewhat testy recently. During his cabinet meeting this February, Netanyahu proposed that Israel should postpone signing of military aid agreement until Barack Obama leaves office and another President takes his place. This proposal has caused some irritation in Washington.

Despite that, Israel now sends Nagel, a senior Israeli official, overseas with instructions to sign the deal “as soon as possible”, according to Netanyahu’s office. The military aid package in question, is going to be the biggest aid package the US have ever provided to any country, with total sum vary being some $40 billion or more for the next ten years. This is significantly more than the previous $30-billion agreement, signed 10 years ago.

Benjamin Netanyahu initially aimed at extending the agreement to some $50 billion total. On top of that, Israel wanted to preserve the current figure of 26% of aid that is allowed to be spent on Israel’s own defense research, defense and procurement. If that figure is changed, Israeli military defense companies will lose hundreds of millions of dollars, which will be diverted to American companies. This figure, established in 1980s, was intended to support the developing Israeli defense. Now that Israel’s military is well up and running, the US intends to have more of its money back.

So, despite all the above, the Israel is obviously in a rush to sign the deal in its current form. Some argue that this signals that Israel is desperate to get what it can get, having little hope that the next administration will offer a better deal (or at least secure the current one).

David Makovsky, an analyst at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, says there are also concerns that if Donald Trump becomes the US President, he will cut military aid programs, even despite his vocally expressed support for Israel.

Makovsky also points out that political support for Israel among the liberal US ranks is slipping. Securing the deal now will make it “bulletproof” for a decade to come, regardless of circumstances.
Ilan Goldenberg, director of the Middle East Security Program at the Center for a New American Security, there is also a symbolic meaning to the agreement.

“For them [Obama and Netanyahu] to agree on this would send a signal to the world that although their personal relationship is not great, here Obama is making a down payment on 10 years of deep US — Israeli security cooperation. That’s a powerful message.”

This point of view corresponds with that of David Halperin, the director of the New York-based Israel Policy Forum, “It’s an exclamation point on the case the Obama administration has been making for years, that he strengthened more than ever the U.S. commitment to Israeli security.”

Notably, the support of Israel in the US has been bipartisan up until now. Now that the election season has become more and more tense, this support may become a “political football”, according to Sallai Meridor, who was Israel’s ambassador to the United States when the last memorandum of understanding was signed, in 2007. In case of “super-politicized” elections, the bipartisan support may erode. For Netanyahu, who has been repeatedly accused of siding with Republican views, signing the agreement with liberal Barack Obama will help to restore balance of bipartisanship.

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Terrorists look different on CNN!

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The London press has reported that Mohammed Abrini, is an informant for the British Security Services .

Mohammed Abrini, the only person involved both in the Paris attacks (13 November 2015) and Brussels (22 March 2016), called “the man in the hat” is currently being held in Belgium. The Attorney General would be opposed to extraditing him to France due to his connections with the British services.

The British press does not specify if he was working for the police or the Intelligence services, if he had been turned over or infiltrated. This information also raises questions about his brother who officially died in the Levant, but could actually have been taken out.

First Isis supergrass helps UK terror police, Tom Harper, The Times, June 26th, 2016. «Terror suspect dubbed ’the man in the hat’ after Paris and Brussels attacks becomes British police’s first ISIS Supergrass», Anthony Joseph, Daily Mail, June 26th, 2016.


“Dramatic Rescue! Man With Kid Runs Towards Camera!” – 44 Staged Pictures


white helmet infographic (2)


A man with a kid in arm runs towards the camera. The kid’s face is heavily colored, but it looks otherwise fine. On the lower left we see the back of a man with a “White Helmets” logo on his vest. Dust in the background. Always dust or smoke. A bunch of men looking very busy. But are they actually doing anything?

That would be a lucky by-chance photo shot for any normal photographer. Even in country where rubble from a fresh bombing may be around some near corner.

I have done, years ago, press photography for a living. Real accidents or bombings look way more bloody than any of these pictures. And that read color in the girls face is anything but blood.

The photo above is a typical “White Helmets rescue kid” propaganda picture. Except for maybe the old rubble, it is likely completely staged.

There the 43 similar pictures below the fold to demonstrate that. Just ask yourself this: Could these allegedly “by-chance” pictures, taken within a year, really be all as alike as they are if they were taken at real incidents? Really?

The pictures above all look astonishingly similar: rubble, dust or rather haze from a smoke grenade in the background, dusted/greasepaint bloody kids who have no visible trauma, the rescuer with the kid moving towards the camera. Dramatic, high quality scenes which do get distributed by news agencies and published again and again by major “western” media.

Isn’t it an amazing fortune that so many kids get rescued alive by the “White Helmets”, without any serious wounds visible, just moments after bomb impacts? This week after week? With all the same attributes in each picture?

No photo editor at any of the big media ever wondered about that?

These staged photos are part of the war propaganda against the Syrian people and their government.

The “White Helmets” take and distribute these photos. They also distribute lots of “kids rescued from rubble” videos. We wrote about those a month ago:

Other typical features of these movies, see this one, are smoke (grenades) in the streets, dramatic but small open fires nearby, dust or some red color on the children’s face or arms. The camera is often used in a hectic, intentionally amateurish first person view, a style extensively developed in the 1999 horror clip Blair Witch Project. Sometimes sounds of additional “bomb impact” bangs or screaming/wailing women are added.

The “White Helmets” are part of the (anti-) Syria Campaign. “Kid rescued from rubble” is their standard shtick. They are financed with some $60+ million from your taxes by the U.S., the UK and other governments. Such money will buy a lot of good cameras and props and will pay for many actors and extras.

“Man With Kid Runs Towards Camera!” is central to their brand.

The Syria Campaign and the White Helmets – propaganda camouflaged as humanitarian.

The Syria Campaign was created by Purpose Campaigns LLC. The company fabricates and runs for you any world-wide “grass root” movement you would like. With Purpose LLC or other such companies involved, big dollars will buy you big effects. How about an automated Twitter campaign to spread anti-Shia sectarianism? Someone paid for it and here it is.

The “White Helmets” campaign demonstrates the amazing manipulation potential such companies and their high paying customers have.

Posted in SyriaComments Off on “Dramatic Rescue! Man With Kid Runs Towards Camera!” – 44 Staged Pictures

France is eating stolen croissants – Founders of ISIS sunbathing on French Riviera

  • French Riviera 1374a

Syria was, prior to 2011, one of the world’s most important agricultural sources of hard durum wheat.  Italy, famous for its pastas, bought hard durum wheat from Reqaa, Syria for decades.  In fact, almost all of Italy’s pastas were made from the Syrian wheat.  Research studies undertaken for years failed to reveal the secret of the Syrian wheat, and the reasons for its unmatchable quality.

March 2011: the American CIA planned international attack on Syria, for the goal of regime change, began in Deraa. Several years later, ISIS occupied Reqaa as its headquarter.  ISIS is a well-known trading partner with the Erdogan government of Turkey.  ISIS stole the oil from the Syrian oil wells and sold it to Erdogan for $17.00 per barrel.  Erdogan then re-sold the oil to the EU for just under $40.00 per barrel.  The EU admitted their crime, of buying stolen oil.

While in Reqaa, ISIS shipped by truckloads, the wheat stores, which amounted to the equivalent of 8 years of Syrian wheat consumption.  ISIS once again turned to their trusted business partner, President Erdogan of Turkey.   Erdogan bought the wheat, or perhaps he bartered for it.  After all, ISIS and other terrorist groups receive weapons, transportation, supplies and cash through Turkey, from their regional supporters.

Terrorists have medical needs, just like any group of humans.   They get sick, and have toothaches just like everyone else.  Their wives and sex slaves have babies just like other women around the world.  All of the medical needs for the terrorists are covered in Turkey.  Hospitals, clinics, medicines, X-rays and all the rest of routine health coverage is available in Turkey, and officially supplied to the terrorists by Pres. Erdogan.  Before coming into his final phase of control in Turkey, Erdogan’s APK party received a campaign donation from the King of Saudi Arabia, which was 10 Billion US dollars.

Erdogan used the state owned airline to move terrorists from their home country into Turkey, with flights added on in Libya, Yemen and Afghanistan.  Turkish flight crews were astonished at their passengers, and had to play police in flight occasionally as the terrorists tried to abuse female passengers. Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport became an international Transit Hub for terrorists, mercenaries and murderers.

Erdogan sold the stolen Syrian wheat to European countries, just as he had sold them the stolen Syria oil previously.  Italy once again had its favorite Syrian wheat running through its industrial pasta machines.  The British, famous for their tea and Crumpets, began baking their “English Muffins” from the stolen Syrian wheat.  The French, ‘tres’ famous for their croissants, were baking up a storm from the exquisite Syrian wheat, which was ‘hot’ in more ways than one.

USA, UK, France, Germany, EU, NATO, Turkey, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and others, formed a coalition against Syria.  In the mainstream media these “Friends of Syria” were promoting regime change for freedom and democracy.  No one seemed to question why Saudi Arabia and Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates, would be demanding freedom and democracy in Syria, while they all had neither at home.  How can the Gulf countries teach democracy to Syria, when they cannot even spell the word?

Now, after more than 5 years of daily butchering of unarmed civilians in Syria, by terrorists supported by USA, UK, France and others, these “Friends of Syria” are still demanding freedom  and democracy for Syria.  In the meantime, European countries like France and Belgium have been targets of ISIS attacks.  France and the EU in general, were trading partners with ISIS, through Pres. Erdogan as the middleman in the deal.  The Europeans knew full well where the oil and wheat were coming from.

The people of France, Belgium, USA, and the other “Friends of Syria” coalition know full well where the source of global terrorism is: Saudi Arabia.

When the mothers of ISIS and terrorists in Syria have spoken, they all tell the same tale: their son was not radicalized on the internet alone.  There was a personal contact, meeting one on one, with someone in the community.  It could have been a Saudi trained cleric, or a friend, classmate or co-worker.  It was not from sitting alone in a dark room staring at the computer screen.  The radicalization process was personal, and could be accompanied later with computer activity.  Whether they were attending a mosque in Florida, or in Belgium, the lessons were the same: Wahhabism.  During the 60’s and 70’s the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia sent Saudi trained clerics around the world, especially concentrating on Europe and USA.   Saudi Arabia follows its own brand of Islam, which is Wahabism, and is the only form of Islam officially sanctioned in Saudi Arabia. However, the US, British and German Muslim Brotherhood followers, which are in the millions, are preaching the exact same narrative of Islam as the Wahabbis. In Houston, Texas there are 40 Mosques, and only one is not classified as Salafi.

Wahhabism is the enemy to global peace and security.   But, it is not a nation, or an Army.  How do we fight a political ideology which is spreading throughout the world?  The followers are not religious, and may have almost no understanding of the actual religion called Islam.  Terrorists and ISIS members are not the clean-cut religious fanatics the media would have you to believe. They are usually not very religious, and they may appear to have been radicalized over night.  Yes, the transformation from normal young man, or woman, to a killer can be a very short time. The flow of weapons, money and supplies needs to stop and that requires international sanctions on the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Qatar, USA, Turkey and all other countries who are feeding the monster in Syria and Iraq.

Some experts have called ISIS, and Wahhabi terrorist groups, a “Death Cult”.  A cult which glorifies the killing of non-Muslims, and Muslims who are deemed to not be following the same political ideology.

In true Islam it is forbidden to kill innocents, and prohibited for a Muslim to kill a Muslim.  The Wahhabis and ISIS have created their own fashion of Islam, and they make up their own rules.  They kill anyone who is not exactly like them.  Political experts call them “Islamofascists”.  Fascism is a political ideology in which they are against anyone not following their exact ideology.

Europeans should be worried about all these migrants who have arrived in 2015 to 2016 period.  Are they really all innocent people who have lost their homes and have nowhere to go for safety?  Among those thousands of migrants now in Europe, could there be hundreds of Wahhabi followers?

While Saudi Arabia exports the Wahhabism ideology, which inspires ISIS and the Takfirists globally, the King and his Royal Family are sunbathing at their palace on the beach, not so far from the scene of the recent terrorist attack at Nice, where 84 persons were killed, and ISIS claimed responsibility.

World leaders will all have words of condolences for France and the victims of the Nice attack.  They will light candles, lay flowers and make statements like, “They hate us for our freedom.”

What freedom?

The freedom to send Wahhabi mercenaries from Libya to Deraa, Syria in March 2011, with stockpiles of weapons stashed at the Omri mosque.

The freedom to form a coalition of death and destruction called “Friends of Syria” in which sanctions are placed on the Syrian people, so that even cancer chemotherapy  drugs cannot be brought into Syria.

The freedom to kidnap young boys and girls and use them as sex slaves to service the appetites of the terrorists known as Free Syrian Army, Al Qaeda, Ahrar al Sham, Jibhat al Nusra and Islam Army.

The freedom to destroy the cultural heritage of Syria, which dates back 10,000 years.  The 2 oldest continuously inhabited cities on earth are Damascus and Aleppo, according to UNESCO.

The French and their European neighbors are free to eat the croissants made of the stolen Syrian wheat.  Perhaps it will leave a bitter taste in their mouths.

Posted in FranceComments Off on France is eating stolen croissants – Founders of ISIS sunbathing on French Riviera

Syrian Women Who Escaped From ISIS Filmed Burning Niqab


(Photo: © Screenshot from video)

The short clip shows women who escaped from Islamic State territory burning a niqab and chanting anti-ISIS and anti-Semitic slogans.


Syrian women have been filmed burning a niqab (face veil) after escaping from Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) territory.

One of the women, who was wearing a red hijab, shouts anti-ISIS slogans to the crowd which responds with hearty “amens.”

“May Allah burn ISIS like they burned us and oppressed us,” she declaims.

“May Allah burn them in the fires of hell and the fires of the devil (AMEN!) Allah will help the victorious and take away the Jews (AMEN!)”

The addition of the anti-Semitic comment at the end is interesting because it shows how deeply embedded anti-Semitism is in Arabic society, even at the joyous moment of liberation from the tyranny of the Islamic State, she takes the time to damn the Jews.

The video is otherwise encouraging, showing the passion of the opposition to the forced wearing of the niqab among otherwise religious Muslims and the hatred harbored towards the Islamic State from those living under its brutal rule.






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PKK foreign relations head speaks out


Pro-Kurdish demonstrators dance and hold a flag showing Abdullah Ocalan, the jailed leader of the Kurdistan Workers Party, during a protest in Frankfurt, Germany, April 10, 2016. (photo by REUTERS/Ralph Orlowski)

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The Kurds have been the most oppressed people of the region for the past 100 years. Although they have a strong, ancient and well-established presence in the region, they nonetheless fell victim to the nationalist conflicts of the empires that ruled and governed them, as well as to the interests of colonial powers in the region.

SummaryPrint Riza Altun, head of foreign relations for the Kurdistan Workers Party, speaks to As-Safir about the party’s point of view at this critical moment in the history of the region, following the latest military coup attempt in Turkey.

TranslatorKamal Fayad

The federal entity established in northern Iraq has been their most important “achievement” to date, as the Kurds look with great optimism to repeat the same experiment in northern Syria and the region that they call Rojava.

But that experiment remains pending, with Syria embroiled in an infinitely complex universal war. In Turkey, on the other hand, the Kurds face the vilest of ethnic persecutions, despite them being the largest group of people with the longest history of armed struggle, who paid a heavy price filled with untold sacrifices.

Kurds are now a pre-eminent player in the Middle East arena, particularly since the eruption of the so-called Arab Spring. The Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) emerged as an influential game maker, especially in Syria and Turkey, and its presence in Iraq has greatly increased, specifically in the war against the Islamic State (IS), where Kurdish troops are part of the armed presence along the various battlefronts.

To better understand the PKK’s aspirations, there is nothing better than to interview one of its most prominent leaders and founders, who held many important positions, the latest being the party’s head of foreign relations.

In other words, he is the party’s foreign minister, a most sensitive job in these times of regional and international intersecting interests. His name is Riza Altun, well known in Lebanon and Syria from the time of Abdullah Ocalan’s residency in both countries.

In Turkey, on the other hand, he is one of the most wanted people. PKK leaders never stay in one place for too long, as they are constantly on the move, and contacting Altun was not easy, even via modern technological means.

Yet in the end, and thanks to those same means of communication, As-Safir succeeded in conducting this interview with him, in which he expressed the party’s point of view at this critical moment in the history of the region, including Turkey, in particular, after the latest military coup attempt there.

As-Safir:  Let’s start with a classic question: Do you still strive for an independent Kurdish state in Turkey?

Altun:  We do not view the Kurdish cause as one predicated on specific nationalist or ethnic aspirations. We believe it is the basis for attaining the freedom of all peoples of the Middle East and the cornerstone of the symbiotic relationship between all components of the region.

In general terms, our stance is linked to the historical and social bonds that exist between all peoples of the Middle East. A review of the history of the region reveals that whenever nationalist aspirations were the basis for the establishment of a separate entity, said aspirations invariably led to ethnic, nationalist, religious or even sectarian conflicts with other components of society. Therefore, we are trying to avoid making the same mistakes. If we were to follow that same path, we would find ourselves caught in the same quagmire as the one currently afflicting the Middle East, and this would add to the other contentious issues of the region. We are searching for a solution to the prevailing status quo, as we aim to find an answer based on the ‘democratization’ of countries that would respect their own ethnic, religious and sectarian pluralism.

Instead of an independent state and calls for secession, partitioning and the like, we must focus on achieving social freedom for all inhabitants of the region. Before World War I, there were no [Arab] states, but an Arab nation composed of clans and tribes, which made those communities more interdependent than they are today. But after the war, the [Arab] nation was partitioned into many states, leading to a rise in problems and incongruities between the components of said nation.

As-Safir:  Does that mean that the PKK’s past calls for an independent state were wrong?

Altun:  I prefer not to characterize them as right or wrong. At that time, we did call for the establishment of an independent state, but if that state were attainable then, we would have focused on democratizing and instilling liberties in it. This did not happen. With time, the term ‘independence’ was replaced with that of ‘liberty,’ because the latter is key to us and others like us. By definition, the word “independence” does not include the notion of liberty, but ‘liberty’ does include that of independence.

After World War I, the partitioning of the Middle East into national states only created more problems. Therefore focusing on establishing a national Kurdish state would exacerbate existing problems, while focusing on freedom is the key toward achieving success.

The so-called Arab Spring rejected the Middle Eastern regimes that arose after World War I. Said regimes could never have led to freedom, happiness and well-being.

The Salafist takfiri movement represented by IS arose in parallel with the Arab Spring revolt.

Thus, focus should be on how to confront that movement and the ideals espoused by IS and the Salafist movement since the solution cannot come through them, and their espoused methodology could not even lead to the establishment of a caliphate.

On the other hand, capitalist and imperialist powers also want their policies advanced through their interventions. These powers caused the partitioning of the Middle East into states that they turned against each other. This Orientalist mentality that confers a backwards character upon the East is not a recipe for success. Where is the Middle East headed? What can we do amid this turmoil? As nationalist entities arose, so did the problems. We have no problem in the emergence of nationalist entities that reflect national identities, but the problem lies in the national fanaticism within those entities. As a result, we must not endeavor to separate our freedom from that of those around us.

Ethnic variances and diversity are important. But if a crossroads is reached, either to unite or separate, then our stance favors unity within diversity. I will refer, in this case, to the Kurds, Arabs and Persians, but I shall exclude the Turks, who later settled in the region and are not indigenous to it as the other three civilizations that maintained their ethnic identities, while collectively shaping the culture of the region.

Our respective cultures, customs, cuisine and so forth are similar and represent an integrated unit. How can one call for secession from said unit? We contend that we are all Muslims, and Islam preaches the right of all religions to express their beliefs. Yet we see that sectarian slaughtering is being perpetrated in the name of Islam, as communities are pitted one against the other. How is that representative of Islam, and how can it lead to a solution? It is the antithesis of Islam’s most basic tenets. The plan proposed by Ocalan is predicated on the democratization of the whole Middle East, with all entities afforded the opportunity to express themselves as part of this regional federation.

As-Safir:  Your proposal is a perfect solution to the ever-increasing problems in the region. But in the case of Turkey, other groups exist within Turkish society, such as ardent nationalists and secularists, as well as Islamist extremists. Does your proposal garner acceptance within those groups? Why has the Kurdish problem not been resolved yet? What other options do the Kurds have in the absence of a positive response: peaceful confrontation through parliament or a continuation of armed conflict?

Altun:  What I said about a change in mentality will be difficult to attain overnight. But when the proper framework exists for such a change, then we believe that all Middle Easterners will embrace such a mentality, except for people with bad intentions. All peoples who have suffered from oppression, exploitation and the ravages of war, who have lived in despair, are now in search of hope. We believe that this proposal represents the hope that those people aspire to attain.

What you said about the Turkish reality is true, the situation is complicated, but we have been resisting for the past 40 years.

The traditional Kemalist movement insists on remaining in power, but it is in a state of decline. Even nationalist movements have begun to lose their luster within society.

[Recep Tayyip] Erdogan and his party’s mindset is sectarian and exploits the Middle East’s predicament to advance its policies. But, lately, said movement has waned to a dreadful state.

Our proposal is not perfect, and it shall be translated into action as soon as the opportunity arises. For example, the parties that emerged to confront the state came as a result of the type of mentality that we called for adopting. The June 7 elections were very important in that regard as they hindered the achievement of Erdogan’s dream to have a parliamentary majority. The Republican People’s Party and the Nationalist [Action] Party failed to form a real opposition to the Justice and Development Party. Said real opposition was spearheaded by the Peoples’ Democratic Party thanks to the mindset that it espoused on the ground and its inclusion of leftist, Alawite, ethnic, communist, Christian and other minorities. This mindset is based on democracy and on the fact that it lets these minorities know that they would be allowed to express themselves freely.

Another example of that mindset is the Rojava revolution in Syria. In al-Qamishli, for example, Arabs, Kurds, Armenians, Circassians and Turkmens, among others, all live in the city. We never even claimed that it was a Kurdish city. We did not demand their expulsion, even when Arabs were brought in as part of an Arabization policy. We did not use the term “state” in Rojava, because its use denotes it being imbued with a nationalist identity, with a particular ethnicity representing the majority, while other ethnicities are excluded. We proposed an alternative that is the canton, where each ethnic group can represent itself and manage its own affairs, via a higher [central] authority, as is the case right now.

We make it a point that Kurds never meddle in Syriac or other people’s’ affairs, on the condition that no other people should pose a serious threat to the well-being of others.

As-Safir:  But the Rojava experiment is currently untenable in Turkey, and the Peoples’ Democratic Party garnered 13% of total votes in Turkey, thus changing the post-June 7 political equation, though not enough to instigate change. Will you maintain your presence in parliament despite the apparent lack of progress or is armed confrontation the only way out? In other words, what role will the military force play at this stage?

Altun:  Our battle is multi-faceted and includes action on the social, intellectual, diplomatic, media and even military fronts, with the method used depending on the attitude of the state, as we try to exploit opportunities that we think have some chance of success. When the state uses military power to threaten your very existence, you find yourself forced to use violence in order to defend yourself, as occurred lately. Any breakthroughs on the military front will be used to effectuate democratic change.

We have lately been subjected to great pressure and were thus forced to resort to armed resistance. Parties and media outlets were shuttered, parliamentary immunity lifted and arrests made, leaving us but one available avenue; namely, the use of force.

As-Safir:  Back to Turkey. Who executed and stood behind the latest coup? What effect will it have on the war against the Kurds and the Kurdish cause in general, particularly after the Turkish army was humiliated during the coup? Will that affect the army’s motivation in its war against the Kurds?

Altun:  The situation in Turkey is highly complex, rendering difficult any future prognoses. Erdogan is promoting the idea that Gulen organized the coup. In short, that is untrue, and any role by the latter would have been extremely limited.

In Turkey, Kemalist traditional power is being upheld through a military guardianship with an anti-Kurdish, anti-Islam and anti-socialist mindset. Erdogan’s ascension to power was through Western backing due to the lack of prospects available to the regime as a result of its Kemalist traditions, among them its oppression of the Kurds. During the reign of Erdogan, the road was extremely bumpy, but in the end, the Kemalist tradition was broken. Two such Kemalist movements existed within the military — one that was trying to adapt to Erdogan’s policies and another that is more traditional, that I think was responsible for the coup. Yet, concurrently, that same movement found support among other army factions dissatisfied with Erdogan’s rule. The coup failed, and we are currently witnessing a counter-coup imbued with a civilian character. We are faced by one man, named Erdogan, who does not recognize constitutional rule. More than 50,000 people have been arrested so far. All university professors are sacked, and 17,000 teachers arrested, with the number rising every day.

The real coup is that which Erdogan is currently conducting. Even if we assumed that the coup attempt succeeded, the ensuing regime would not have been democratic, but anti-Kurdish. None of them is better than the other: neither Erdogan nor the army. After the June 7 elections, Erdogan rebelled against the results, in a move that represented the initial coup, when the regime mutated into a presidential one as other institutions were marginalized, among them the judiciary. The latest military coup was a counter-coup against Erdogan’s initial coup, but it failed, leading to yet a new coup today.

In short, Erdogan is a threat to Kurds and the region as a whole. The things that he did are but a prelude to future actions following his alliances with IS, Jabhat al-Nusra, Ahrar al-Sham and other backward reactionary movements that he wanted to exploit to become the leader of the region.

As-Safir:  Will internal and anti-Kurdish repression increase after the coup?

Altun:  Erdogan failed to attain his aspired role, and he is now trying to normalize relations with some, such as Israel and Russia. He only has Qatar and Saudi Arabia left on his side. He even had a row with the United States, and his decline led him to reassess his policies. Internally, events changed the situation on the ground, including his monopoly of the power structure. He even forsake his comrades inside the party, and only an acquiescing entourage remains by his side, leading him to cooperate with other forces in order to achieve his goals. All these developments laid the groundwork for the latest coup attempt.

The coup averted, Erdogan will never reassess his past policies, but will continue to implement them. He has reached a fork in the road: either stay in power and kill all who oppose him, or be killed. There is no other option. If he were to be held accountable for his actions, he would be found guilty of murder, corruption and receiving bribes. In addition, his actions will fail to put an end to future coup attempts. He will try to rule Turkey despite the chaos, but will embark Turkey on an even more chaotic path. His actions are clear, and he will keep this course and maintain the same policy against the Kurds of Syria. The Kurdish issue is key to the problems that Turkey faces, and it is the key that opens the door toward salvation. For either a solution is reached, or the crisis continues unabated.

As-Safir:  So he will continue to support the Syrian opposition, despite the coup and his preoccupation with internal matters?

Altun:  When the Justice and Development Party came to power, Erdogan acknowledged the Kurdish cause and espoused a democratic rhetoric. He said that he would resolve the Kurdish issue; statements that 80% of the people welcomed, as discussions began to find a solution to the Kurdish problem. But he reneged on his word and resumed previously adopted policies. Because he failed to resolve the Kurdish issue, he opened the door for a recurrence of future military coups. This wave of coups shall not be halted until stability is restored to Turkey soon, or in the future. We reject Erdogan’s policy, just as we reject the military coup. We form a third line of thought, whereby the Kurdish issue is democratically resolved.

As-Safir:  Does Erdogan endure due to the United States’ need for him?

Altun:  Turkey’s relationship with the West is a strategic one. The West embraced [Mustafa Kemal] Ataturk because the latter had Western proclivities. The problem lies in the fact that the Turks have their own culture, but embrace and live a Western lifestyle. The West uses Turks as a tool against its opponents. They sucked Turkey into NATO and the European Union, though Turkey did not acquiesce to Western whims during the Iraq War. For the first time, Kemalists forsake US policies, leading to the decision to allow Erdogan and the Islamists’ advent to power, with the Americans playing the pre-eminent role in that plan to kill two birds with one stone, whereby decrepit Kemalist traditions would be transcended by Erdogan’s new policies.

Erdogan is not a leader born from the will of the people. The United States prepared and brought him to power. Erdogan’s star shone overnight despite him lacking any official status, except for the fact that he visited the US, where he spent some time and was treated as a leader. Subsequent to that, the rift widened between Erdogan and the US due to his conflicting policies vis-a-vis Syria, Iraq, Libya, Israel, Egypt and other issues. America could no longer tolerate his policies that caused untold problems. Though the West proclaimed being against the latest coup, it remained silent during the first hours, until it became clear that the coup had failed. Statements would have been different had the coup succeeded.

As-Safir:  Does that mean that the US played a part in the coup?

Altun:  Perhaps. It did remain silent as events unfolded.

As-Safir:  But why would the US be involved in a coup destined to fail?

Altun:  America’s role, if any, cannot be ascertained. But Erdogan accuses Gulen of orchestrating it, and the latter lives in the US, where he could never have organized a coup without US knowledge.

The US’ approach to Turkey is different from its approach to other countries. No matter how upset it may become with Turkey, it nevertheless remains in need of its services. Problems exist between Turkey and the West, but that does not mean that they do not need Turkey, which has an assigned role to play in the region.

As-Safir:  You said that Erdogan adopted policies not in line with those of the US, despite the fact that Washington brought him to power. Why? Is it because of his aspirations to revive the Ottoman Empire or out of desire to monopolize power in the region? Doesn’t he know that his survival depends on US approval?

Altun:  Erdogan’s ascent to power has nothing to do with the changes he initiated once in power. Erdogan emerged due to nationalist traditions, which he betrayed, just as he betrayed Necmettin Erbakan in the process, preferring to espouse extremist Salafist Islamist policies once he assumed power.

In the beginning, Erdogan was supposed to rule for a specific period of time, but developments in the Middle East inflated his ego and led to him adopting authoritarian policies to the point where he thought that he was the leader of Sunnis in the Muslim world, as he aspired to build a new Ottoman caliphate, leading to his rift with the US. All of his statements had a basis in Islam, and the irony is that the same Turkey that abandoned its Eastern heritage to adopt Western traditions reversed course to strongly defend its Eastern heritage and confront the West.

As-Safir:  Does America fear a strong Turkey?

Altun:  Fear of the popularity that Erdogan attained was cause for concern to the Americans, leading to the disputes between them lately.

As-Safir:  Are there contacts between the PKK and the US?

Altun:  Contacts do exist, but they are of a low level and do not include any coordination.

As-Safir:  Direct contacts?

Altun:  They are somewhere between direct and indirect.

As-Safir:  Are they positive?

Altun:  Characterizing them depends on the region in question. For example, in Rojava, the Americans backed the model that emerged there and endeavored to prevent Turkish intervention in the area. But on the other hand, the US turns a blind eye to the massacres, killing and repression perpetrated against Kurds by the Turkish state. The US cooperates with the Kurdish People’s Protection Units, provides them with support and prevents Turkish intervention. The US’ role is double-edged depending on its interests, and the relationship with Washington is therefore tactical in nature.

As-Safir:  Did the Americans promise to back a Kurdish federation in Syria?

Altun:  Absolutely not. The United States’ policy is pragmatic. It does not back federalism, but has yet to reject it outright. It allows the idea to endure until its outcome becomes apparent. The US’ interests dictate its approach to the matter. It adopts a conciliatory attitude toward all. Behind the scenes, it states that it does not object to the idea of a federation, but it publicly says that it is against partitioning, keeping in mind that federalism has nothing to do with partitioning.

As-Safir:  Will Washington allow Kurds to reach Afrin and connect between Kurdish regions in the area?

Altun: The US is manipulating all relevant elements to prevent them from obstructing the Kurds’ advance to Afrin. But it also is telling Turkey that it would not recognize the Kurdish entity in Rojava.

As-Safir:  Do you have contacts with the Syrian regime?

Altun:  We have had relations with Damascus from the onset, and contacts never stopped. But I cannot say that the meetings between us are numerous.

As-Safir:  Did Ocalan’s exit from Syria affect relations with Damascus?

Altun:  We honor our relationship and the help that Damascus gave us in the past.

As-Safir:  Adopting the federal nomenclature without consultations affected attitudes toward the experiment, with people viewing it as a secessionist move. Is it secessionist?

Altun:  We also criticized the imposition of such a view, the wording of its announcement and the use of Rojava therein because Rojava remains an integral part of united Syria. The announcement should have been worded differently and we objected to the federation’s announcement text. We support the establishment of a federation in northern Syria, so why then do we need a federal Rojava? What would be the fate of the remaining Syrian territory? They did not think about the rest of Syria.

As-Safir:  Whose fault was that? Isn’t there any coordination between you and the authorities in Rojava?

Altun:  There is no coordination in the sense of ‘do this or that.’ We do not directly interfere there but rather offer suggestions, without giving specific instructions.

We also criticized them for announcing it prior to the completion of a proper groundwork for its announcement, which gave the impression that it was being imposed as a fait accompli, and that is harmful. The plan should have been explained prior to the announcement being made. We prefer the use of North Syria Federation and call for the removal of Rojava from the name because Rojava denotes a federation of Kurdish identity. North Syria is home to all of its constituents, and the freedom of Kurds there is contingent upon the degree of liberty enjoyed by other inhabitants of the region. Our focus, therefore, is on instituting an intellectual revolution, without which matters tend to get more complicated.

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The Larger Context Of The Jihadi Attack On Aleppo


Image result for aleppo photos

Al-Qaeda in Syria and associated forces are currently driving a large scale attack from the south-west into Aleppo city. Their aim is to create a new corridor between the Idleb/Aleppo rural areas they occupy and the besieged al-Qaeda controlled areas in east-Aleppo. Between 5,000 and 10,000 al-Qaeda fighters, using U.S. supplied equipment, are taking part in the battle. Formally some of the fighters are “moderates” but in reality all this groups are by now committed to implement Sharia law and to thereby suppress all minorities. They made some initial progress against government forces but are under fierce attack from the Syrian and Russian air forces.

The Russian General Staff has warned since April that al-Qaeda in Syria (aka Jabhat al-Nusra aka Fateh al Sham) and the various attached Jihadi groups were planing a large scale attack on Aleppo. An al-Qaeda commander confirmed such long term planning in a pep-talk to his fighters before the current attack.

This shines a new light on the protracted talks Secretary of State Kerry has had for month with his Russian colleague. The U.S. tried to exempt al-Qaeda from Russian and Syrian attacks even as UN Security Council Resolutions demanded that al-Qaeda and ISIS areas be eradicated. Then the U.S. tried to make an “offer” to Russia to collectively fight al-Qaeda should Russia put its own and Syrian forces under U.S. control. We called this offer deceptive nonsense. All this, it now seems, was delaying talk to allow al-Qaeda to prepare for the now launched attack.

Another step in the delaying, though a failed one, was the re-branding of Jabhat al-Nusra as Fateh al-Sham. Some “western” media called that a split from al-Qaeda but in reality is was a merging of al-Qaeda central and Nusra/al-Qaeda in Syria under a disguising new label. Al-Qaeda’s Qatari sponsors had demanded the re-branding so al-Qaeda in Syria could publicly be sold to “western” governments and their public as “moderate rebels”. But the sham failed. It was too obvious a fake to be taken seriously. The “western” support for al-Qaeda will have to continue secretly and in limited form.

The current attack on Aleppo is serious. The Syrian army lacks ground forces. Significant professional ground forces from Iran were promised but never arrived. Iran was still dreaming of an accord with the U.S. and therefore holding back on its engagement in Syria. The Afghan farmer battalions Iran recruited are not an alternative for professional troops. Defending against an enemy that is using lots of suicide vehicle bombs to breach fortifications and death-seeking Jihadis to storm field positions is difficult. It demands diligent preparation excellent command and control.

If this attack can be defeated the huge losses al-Qaeda will have to take might end its open military style war. If al-Qaeda succeeds with the attack the Syrian army will need very significant additional ground forces to regain the initiative.

But no matter how that battle goes strategically the U.S. is sniffing defeat in its regime change endeavor. It is now proposing to split Syria. Syria and all its neighbors are against this. It will, in the end, not happen, but the damage Washington will create until it acknowledges that fact could be serious. Russia can and should prevent such U.S. attempts of large scale social engineering.

Russia on the other side has now to decide if it wants to escalate enough to create more than the current stalemate. Over time a stalemate becomes expansive and it may, at any time, suddenly turn into defeat. The U.S. negotiation positions so far were obviously not serious. The U.S. delayed to allow for further large attacks on the Syrian government. The alternative for Russia is to either leave Syria completely or to escalate enough to decisively defeat the Jihadis. That is not an easy decision.

Today some Jihadis shot down another Russian helicopter over Syria. The bloody body of the dead pilot was dragged through the mud by some local nuts and the video thereof proudly presented. If the Russian government needs some public pretext to go back into Syria it now has it. Also today the Islamic State threatened to attack Russia within its border. Another good reason to return to Syria in force. Of note is that Russia is already extremely pissed over the unreasonable hostile climate towards it in Washington DC. It will have consequences.

The Iranian Supreme Leader Khamenei today acknowledged that the nuclear agreement with the U.S. is a failure. The U.S. did not deliver on its end. Iranian money is still blocked in U.S. controlled accounts and no international bank wants to do business with Iran because the U.S. is threatening to penalize them. The conclusion, Khamenei says, is that no deal with U.S. over any local issue in the Middle East is possible and that all negotiations with it are a waste of time. This new public position may finally free the limits the Rouhani government of Iran had put on Iranian deployments to Syria. Why bother with any self-limitation if the U.S. wont honor it?

How the situation in Syria will develop from here on depends to a large part on Turkey. Turkey is changing its foreign policy and turning towards Russia, Iran and China. But how far that turn away from the “west” will go and if it will also include a complete turnaround on Syria is not yet clear. Should Turkey really block its borders and all supplies to the Jihadis, the war on Syria could be over within a year or two. Should (secret) supplies continue, the war may continue for many more years. In both cases more allied troops and support for the Syrian government would significantly cut the time (and damage) the war will still take. That alone would be well worth additional efforts by Syria’s allies.

Will Tehran and Moscow agree with that conclusion?

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Syria: Saudi Zio-Wahhabi’s desecrate bodies of fallen Russian pilots

Saudi Zio-Wahhabi  in the northwestern province of Idlib savagely defiled the bodies of the crew of the Russian helicopter which ha been shot down earlier today near the city of Saraqib.

A video released by the Zio-Wahhabi shows the ultra-conservative fighters taunting the bodies of two Russian servicemen who were stripped off their uniforms. The footage also display the burnt-out wreckage of the downed Mill Mi-8.

Russian Ministry of Defense has issued an official statement declaring that a Russian military transport helicopter Mi-8 was downed by ground fire on the way to the ‪Hmeymim airbase after delivery of humanitarian aid to the Aleppo city in the ‪Idlib province.

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Unjustified Revenge of the Holocaust Continues


By Sajjad Shaukat

Massacre of Jews through various tactics of torture in the concentration camps, erected by Hitler before and during the World War 11 is still shocking and condemnable. It was a big tragedy, popularly known as the Holocaust, conducted by the forces of state terrorism. But, since the 9/11 tragedy, the Zionist-Israeli- led America has been taking unjustified revenge of the Holocaust from the Muslims in particular and the Christians in general, including persons of some other religious communities, who were not responsible for the Holocaust.

Zionist-controlled American leading think-tanks and media have propagated that “genocide of 5 million Jews was carried out at the extermination camps, using tools of mass murder, such as gas chambers of Germany, Poland, Austria and Alsace”, while some Jewish-influenced Western scholars have estimated the genocide of the 7.8 million Jews.

On the other side, impartial writers, researchers and authors have opined, “Following the rise of Hitler there were no more than 4 million Jews, living in areas occupied by the Third Reich at the height of its power. Yet on June 30, 1965, the West German government announced that some 3,375,000 Jewish holocaust “survivors” had applied for reparations money. The International Red Cross had already reported in 1946 that of registered Jewish camp inmates no more than 300,000 could have died, and their audit to December 31, 1984 records a total 282,077 registered deaths of all internees in all German Concentration Camps from all causes.”

Some Holocaust deniers claim, “The mass extermination of the Jews by the Nazis never happened…the Nazi command had a policy of deporting Jews, not exterminating them”, while some remark that the number of Jewish losses has been greatly exaggerated…that the Holocaust was not systematic nor a result of an official policy…only 600,000 Jews were killed rather than six million. All Jews were not killed through gas chambers, but also due to hunger, diseases and On the one hand, the Jews have made the Holocaust the greatest device of gaining sympathy, while, on the other, they have used it for wars, anti-Muslim policies, expansion and foreign-aid, and to fulfill the Zionist ambition of greater Israel. With the support of American-Zionist Jews who manipulate the Holocaust, Israel has also become the sixth strongest military power of the world owing to the US assistance.

Once Henry Kissinger stated “legitimacy is not natural or automatic, but created.” Under the cover of the 9/11 tragedy, the US President George W. Bush who was in collaboration with the neo-conservatives and the Zionist Jews, orchestrated the drama of global war on terror to obtain the illegitimate interests of Israel by targeting the Islamic countries and persecution of the Bush who used the words, “crusade against the evil-doers” adding to the perception that the ongoing ‘different war’ against terrorism is actually a war against the Muslim countries also warned the world to choose sides by saying, “either you are with us or with terrorists.” It was due to employment of pressure-diplomacy on the weak states—Muslim countries like Pakistan, Indonesia, Libya etc., including almost all the Arab states joined Bush anti-terrorism war.

By manipulating the 9/11 carnage, Bush also got the sympathies of almost all the major Western countries including NATO states which also joined the fake global war on terror. By justifying the unjustified war on terror, several Muslim countries were deliberately destabilized and converted into concentration camps to attain the political, economic and religious interests of the Jews, and for a greater Israel. For the purpose, double game and false flag operations which still continue became the part of the American CIA, Israeli Mossad and The unjustified revenge of the Holocaust started when in 2001; the US-coalition forces attacked Afghanistan.

Then, Anglo-American forces invaded Iraq in 2003, which was also changed in the During the invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq and after occupation, the brutal tactics of the US-led NATO like heavy air bombardment and ground shelling by the sophisticated war machinery, including special military operations and extra-judicial assassinations killed several innocent persons. Particularly, the US military strategic warlords who preferred to create a paralyzing effect of ‘shock and awe’ displayed the terrible inferno of destruction in Afghanistan and Iraq.

In this regard, some instances are notable. The forces of the Northern Alliance, supported by America had killed hundreds of the Taliban who had taken shelter in the Jangi Fort, besieged by the former. Even if, the foreign Muslim fighters, hiding in the fort, did not want to surrender as the Americans claimed, the former could come out within fifteen or twenty days due to hunger and thirst. However, US high military strategists did not wait and deliberately killed them through air strikes. In another event, the US-backed Northern Alliance fighters had massacred about seven thousand Taliban who were prisoners and were being moved from Kandhar to Kabul.

In case of Iraq, many of the Iraqis including some members of the former Interim Governing Council were shocked at the violence in Fallujah. Even the US weekly, ‘Newsweek’ admitted in its publication of April 19/April 26, 2004 that the US forces “used very heavy hand in Fallujah where more than 400 people were killed. Four members of the [former] Governing Council resigned in a protest against America’s crackdown in Fallujah…according to doctors figure of the deaths was impossible to check and it is more than 400…an airstrike dropped a 500 pound bomb. Arab language TV claimed that the bomb killed more than a score of civilians at prayer.”

Like Afghanistan, American soldiers also massacred several wounded people and civilians in Iraq. In November, 2004, a number of world’s televised channels including those of America showed footage of a US marine who was shooting and killing an already captive and wounded Iraqi prisoner at close range in a mosque in Fallujah where civilians had taken shelter.

Nobody can deny the fact that these were the worst examples of US-led state terrorism or use of It is of particular attention that the US-led troops, assisted by CIA have carried out indiscriminate mass round-ups in catching up suspected Muslim men and women in Afghanistan and Iraq, including some Arab countries without evidence. Mossad has helped the CIA officials in arresting the Muslim men, having beard and ladies, wearing scarves. Besides Guantanamo Bay and Iraq’s Abu Ghraib prison, CIA torture cells were present in several Islamic countries and were also set up in ships where US secret agencies and military personnel employed various methods of torture on the militants and suspected persons like physical violence and even murder.

American notorious private military firm Blackwater also eliminated countless Muslims

in Iraq and Afghanistan. When America implemented plan of Rand Corporation and sparked a civil war between the Sunnis and Shias in wake of war on terror to promote the objectives of Israel in the Muslim World, the horrible scenes of deaths were witnessed in Pakistan and especially Iraq.

In March, 2013, an investigative report by the British Guardian/BBC disclosed that acting under the direction of the top US officials; the CIA utilized a global network of secret prisons, foreign intelligence agents and torture centers in various Islamic countries including Belgium, Thailand etc. where torture was conducted directly by American intelligence operatives.

The report also mentioned atrocities of the US-backed entities, carried out in Bagram Airbase (Afghanistan), Guantanamo and Iraq—unleashed a deadly sectarian militia which terrorized the Sunni community and germinated a civil war between Sunnis and Shias, and claimed tens of It revealed, “At the height of that sectarian conflict, 3,000 bodies a month were strewn on the streets of Iraq. Rounding up Sunnis in American pickup trucks, the captives were thrown into secret prisons established in libraries, airports, and ministries. Anti-occupation politicians, human rights activists, and journalists were murdered. The purpose was also to terrorize ordinary Iraqis who opposed the US occupation.”

In this respect, the report focuses on the role of retired Colonel James Steele who worked with the Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Gen. David Petraeus who also served as Obama’s CIA director. Steele sent regular memos to Donald Rumsfeld who forwarded them to Vice-President Dick Cheney and President George Bush, while, hundreds of thousands of Iraqis died and millions were displaced as a result of the chaos and brutal practices.

As exact details of the death toll in Afghanistan and Iraq are not available due to the Jewish controlled media and their dominated concerned strategic institutes, some independent organizations have published their reports on the basis of randomly selected interviews of the household persons and the military officials. Some latest reports suggest that more than 3 million people including civilians died in Afghanistan, Iraq and Pakistan.

Following his predecessor, President Barack Obama has also continued the ruthless killings of the Muslims to complete the unfinished agenda of the Zionist Jews and Israel. Apart from air strikes on funerals, marriage-ceremonies and mosques in Afghanistan, he converted Egypt, Libya, Syria, Yemen etc. into concentration camps. As part of the US double game, CIA which created Al-Qaeda and then Islamic State group (Also known as Daesh, ISIS, ISIL), including Al-Qaeda’s Al-Nusra Front and Syrian rebel groups in fighting against the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Iraqi regime is responsible for the mass murder of more than 2 million Muslims and Christians who were killed in civil wars—ground and aerial strikes of the US-led Western countries, including suicide attacks and bomb blasts, conducted by Al-Qaeda and ISIS. Besides, during the phony global war on terror, in these countries and Afghanistan and Iraq, especially in Syria, millions of Muslims became homeless. The plight of refugees—countless deaths, particularly of children due to lack of medical treatment and starvation has displayed the holocaust on larger scale.

President Obama has also broken all the record of human rights by extrajudicial killings of the innocent people through illegal CIA-operated drone attacks in Afghanistan, Somalia, Yemen etc. in general and Pakistan in particular.

It is mentionable that through the war against terrorism, President Bush and Obama providing a golden chance to Israel and India to accelerate the systematic genocide of the Palestinians and Kashmiris by equating the wars of liberation in the controlled territories of Palestine and Kashmir with terrorism. Their forces have been employing military terrorism such as curfews, crackdowns, sieges, massacre and targeted killings to maintain alien rule on these territories.

A number of investigative reports after lab-verification verified that since 1948, Israel used the banned chemical and radiological materials against the Palestinians, Egyptians and Syrians, and during various phases of the Palestinian Intifada, which resulted in to severe convulsions, the burning sensation, the difficulty to breathe, the vomiting and pain found in relation to the victims—mostly women and children, a majority of whom died in the long run. In 2006, during the war against Lebanon, Israel used banned chemical weapons like phosphorous bombs in Lebanon and Gaza, which killed 286 Palestinians and injured 4,200.

After the destruction of more than 7,500 Palestinian homes and displacement of some 3,500 families by a brutal military operation, Israel started the barbaric blockade of Gaza in 2007 by preventing humanitarian aid to the Palestinians. This new phase of atrocities reminded the world of a concentration camp, set up by the Israeli Jews for the Palestinians in the modern era.

Israel’s main aim was to collectively punish the Palestinian innocent civilians, condemning them to vast devastation, leaving them to imminent death, without bothering even for patients who were suffering from kidney and heart problems. Besides fuel, the occupying power deprived the Gazas of clean water and electricity to ensure that homes, hospitals, factories and shopping markets are not able to function, resulting into a miserable life for the Palestinians and even to the eventual deaths of the most vulnerable.

However, Israeli brutalities in Gaza amounts to the brutal treatment of human beings which Jews themselves faced in the concentration camps, established by the ‘Hitlerite Germany’, but, they learnt no lesson. On January 23, 2008, after suffering from acute starvation including everything, Palestinians were forced to pour into Egypt from Gaza Strip through a border wall, blown up by the Hamas militants. This scene reminds the escape of Jews from Sobibar, a concentration camp, erected in Poland during World War 11.

In that camp, German Nazis had made the life of Jews so troublesome, even culminating to deaths that a number of Jews prepared a plan and succeeded in saving their lives through the ‘escape’.

On March 21, 2016, in a speech in Utah, the only Jewish Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders called for an end to the economic blockade of Gaza. Earlier, in an interview with the New York Daily News on April 1, 2016, Sanders remarked about Israel with blood libel in relation to the August 2014 Israeli war in the Gaza Strip by elaborating that Israeli forces bombed apartment houses and hospitals and “killed 10,000 Palestinian civilians…Israel’s force was more indiscriminate than it should have been.”

Like Israel, India left no stone unturned in crushing the war of independent in the Indian-occupied Kashmir. Encouraged by America and silence of the US-led Western powers for the solution of Kashmir issue, both open and clandestine techniques of state terrorism have been employed by the Indian security forces to suppress the struggle of Kashmiris who are fighting for their genuine right of self-determination, as recognized by the UN resolutions. So, Kashmir has also become a concentration camp. In 2008, a rights group reported unmarked graves in various regions of the India-held Kashmir. Then researchers and other groups pointed out thousands of mass graves without markers.

In this context, in August, 2011, Indian Jammu and Kashmir State Human Rights Commission (SHRC) officially acknowledged in its report that 2,156 unidentified bodies of the innocent civilians killed in the two-decade conflict had been buried in unmarked graves in various regions of the Indian-held Kashmir. While concealing actual details, the Indian commission’s report also disclosed that few bodies were defaced, 20 were charred, five only had skulls remaining, and there were at least 18 graves with more than one body each. Notably, foreign sources and human rights organizations have confirmed that unnamed graves include those innocent persons, killed by the Indian military and para-military troops in the fake encounters including those who were tortured to death by the Indian RAW.

Afterwards, rights groups have disclosed that more than 10000 people have disappeared, accusing government forces of staging fake gun battles to cover up killings. The groups also revealed that suspected persons were arrested and never heard from again.

In its report, China’s leading News Agency Xinhua unearthed more unnamed graves in Poonch of the Indian-controlled Kashmir. The report quoted the statement of Sofi Aziz Joo, caretaker of a graveyard as saying, “Police and Army used to bring those bodies and direct me to bury them.

The bodies were usually bullet-ridden, mutilated, faces disfigured and sometimes without limbs Imitating the pattern of Israeli forces, India security forces have so far killed more than 200,000 innocent Kashmiris through destructions of houses, sieges, and during curfews—and orphaned over 107, 351 children, widowed 22,728 women and gang raped 9,920 women.

In the recent years, the US-backed military regime in Burma (present Myanmar) has broken all the record of religious cleansing by encouraging Rakhine extremist Buddhists who butchered thousands of the Burmese Muslims belonging to the Rohingya Muslim through various brutal methods of torture. Eye witnesses disclosed that Buddhist extremists who are in majority in the country, torched several mosques, shops and houses of Muslims, while Burmese military and police have been found involved in genocide, targeted killings, disappearances and rape of According to reports, nearly one and half million Rohingya Muslims have been murdered since June 28, 2012, while more than 20,0000 are missing.

In March 11, 2006, about the tragedy of Burma’s Rohingya Muslims BBC reported, “They have been called one of the world’s most persecuted people….in addition to their almost total lack of legal rights, many have been regularly beaten by police, forced to do slave labour and jailed for Even, American-backed Dalai Lama, the spiritual leader of the Buddhists did not condemn the massacre of Burmese Muslims.

Although the US and some Western countries which claim to be the champion of human rights in the world, have issued some verbal statements regarding humanitarian tragedy in Myanmar, yet no practical action has been taken against the brutal military rulers of the country by taking the issue to the UN Security Council. Particularly, US double standard is part of its strategic game in Burma. America has also included India in this game. Obama Administration lifted restrictions on the US investment in Myanmar to advance the business interests of the Jews.

India has also been availing the opportunity of economic benefits in the country. Now, Burma is undergoing an arranged political change to legitimize its military regime, and enlist US-led India and some Western partners to evade the influence of China.

Despite the dual strategy of Bush towards Al-Qaeda which franchised this outfit on global and regional level, Al-Qaeda and its affiliated militants exterminated several Western nationals and American soldiers by a number of the past suicidal missions such as on Indonesian resort island of Bali, Saudi Arabia, Spain etc., and through a series of bomb attacks on London’s transport network, the 18-story headquarters of the British-owned HSBC bank and the British consulate in Istanbul including those ones in other Afro-Asian countries. Analysts opine that Al-Qaeda lost control on its affiliated militant groups. Al-Qaeda’s decimated old guard may no longer be able to mount elaborately detailed plots, executed by other trained terrorists of various new groups which claim their links with Al-Qaeda, but, are not under its direct command. For instance, in Somalia—splitting away of a hardliner-faction Al-Shabaab is an offshoot of the Islamic Courts Union, though the US defined Al-Shabaab as Al-Qaida’s ally.

If the double game of George W. Bush franchised Al-Qaeda on global level, President Obama’s dual policy franchised both Al-Qaeda and ISIS as part of the anti-Muslim campaign to attain the unfinished agenda of the Zionists, Israeli lobbies and the neoconservatives in the pretext of Meanwhile, as part of the double game, Mossad and CIA utilized the ISIL militants to conduct terror attacks in Paris and Brussels including the shooting at San Bernardino, California which eliminated several Christians.

All these acts of terrorism were false flag operations, because, like the drastic aftermath of 9/11 tragedy, rulers and politicians of the US-led Western countries, particularly of Europe, including their media have been misguiding their general public by creating chauvinism against the Muslims in order to obtain several aims such as exaggeration of Islamophobia, persecution of the Muslims, expulsion of Muslims, especially Syrian refugees from Europe, anti-Islam movement etc., and to get the assistance of Europe and other Western countries against Russia in connection with Syrian war and for intervention in the Islamic False flag terror-attacks have continued unabated. On July 25, this year, a priest has been killed in an attack by two armed men in a church of France near the city of Rouen. ISIL claimed responsibility for the assault.

Preplanned scheme of the CIA-Mossad is also inspiring the Christians and Muslims against each other. Some terror attacks and shooting are the result of self-resentment, conducted by the individuals, having no links with the ISIL. For example, the teenager Ali David Sonboly who killed 9 people in Munich after the deadly shooting in Olympia shopping mall and outside a nearby McDonalds on July 22, 2016 had no connection with the ISIS. Police investigation revealed that he was a mentally troubled person and police also discovered extremist material, linked to the attack by Andres Behring Brevik, the white supremacist who murdered 77 persons in Norway in 2011.

The massacre in Munich took place on the fifth anniversary of the Norway attacks and Sonboly had recently changed a profile picture on an online messaging service to one Earlier, a truck driver identified as Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel, a French national of Tunisian origin killed at least 84 people on July 15, 2016 in a rampage in the French city of Nice. Western media reported that a poster apparently created by the ISIS accepted responsibility on the social media. Undoubtedly, it was also a false flag terror-act.

The shooting in Munich came just four days after an Afghan refugee attacked people with an ax- and-knife in a German train near Bavarian city of Wuerzburg, leaving five people severely injured. Through its Aamaq news agency, the ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack on a German train. But, the German authorities said, “it appears the 17-year- old Afghan asylum seeker who was shot and killed by police have self-radicalized and had no direct link to the Notably, Israel, India and Zionist lobbies which are clandestinely supporting America’s anti-Muslim, pro-Israeli and pro-Indian Donald J. Trump, the Republican presidential nominee want to see him as the president of the United States. Trump who is well-known for his anti-Muslim rhetoric not only exploited the terror assaults of Paris and Brussels, but also the shooting at the night club in Orlando, Florida which killed at least 50 persons.

But, the incident of shooting at the club not only exposed this false flag operation, but also endorsed other false flag terror-attacks. In this regard, in an interview with Brazilian TV on June 14, 2016, the ex-wife of the Orlando shooter Omar Mateen Sitora Yusufiy revealed that American FBI pressurized her to keep quiet about his homosexuality. While, Mateen had been dubbed as an Islamic terrorist by the politicians, senior officials and commentators in the US, following reports that he had pledged allegiance to the ISI, but FBI wanted to downplay the personal and self-hating nature of the assault. Even, President Obama stated on June 12, 2016, “Federal authorities had made no definitive judgement on the killer’s motivation, and whether he was inspired by or directed by Islamic State or other terrorist groups. Obama made it clear by elaborating, “Orlando shooting was the result of Mateen’s personal resentment in relation to the In this context, on June 28, 2016, The New York Times wrote, “The mass shooting at nightclub in Orlando, Fla., on June 12 included a curious phrase: false flag…the victims in the shooting?

They were “crisis actors” hired to promote the story as a pretext to impose tighter gun restrictions, the theory goes…the term false flag relates to naval warfare when a ship would fly a flag that would conceal its true identity as a way to lure an enemy closer. Today, it is commonly a shorthand for an act of deception…conspiracy theorists have applied the label to high-profile attacks, including the shootings by a husband and wife last year in San Bernardino, Calif, that killed 14…the phrase has even been used to doubt the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.” Nevertheless, it is owing to the double game of the US and some Western countries that CIA, Mossad and RAW are conducting false flag terror-operations also to divert the attention of American and Western public from multi-faceted internal problems, which are the result of prolonged war in Afghanistan and elsewhere in the world.

Irresponsible approach of their leaders as well as double game of Turkey and Saudi Arabia have made the ISIL, the most dangerous militant outfit which has rapidly spread its tentacles in the US, Europe, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, the Middle East and Africa. Apart from previous terror assaults in Jalalabad (Afghanistan), Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, Indonesia etc., ISIL is behind the recent bombings in Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Bangladesh, Yemen, Iraq and Afghanistan’s capital Kabul.

Both ISIS and Al-Qaeda and their afflicted terrorists have also killed several Christians and some persons of other religious communities through suicide attacks, bombasts and beheadings.

And in their longest war of history, the US-led NATO forces have been failing in Afghanistan.

The ambush attacks on their military installations and personnel by the Afghan freedom fighters have continued, particularly, targeting American installations and armed persons. A latest report points out that more than 50,000 members of US armed forces, including 10,000 have been killed in Iraq and Afghanistan, while the Pentagon always lies about US casualties. And many contractors of various companies, particularly of the West have also been murdered in these countries and elsewhere in the world by the militants. Regarding the present holocaust, it had already started when the US emerged as the sole superpower in the unipolar world after the disintegration of the former Soviet Union. American former President Bush, (The Senior) replaced the old bipolar order with the New World Order, with the US acting as a kind of global policeman to protect the political and economic interests of Israel and the American Jews who are owners of many big cartels—multinational corporations, arms factories, oil companies, banks etc., including print and electronic media of the US in particular and the world in general.

By dominating American internal policies, Zionist Jews mould country’s foreign policy for their own interests. In the unipolar world, the United Nations became an instrument of the US policy to establish American hegemony in the world. In order to obtain the hidden agenda of Jews, the US imposed its sudden terms of globalization such as free markets, privatization and de-nationalization etc. on the ill-prepared developing countries and the Muslim states which left behind shattered nations and a global financial crisis, increased poverty in most of these countries, which resulted into deaths of many persons due to diseases and lack of medical treatment. It further widened the gap between the poor and the rich countries or G-7 countries. The corporations and international financial institutions like IMF and World Bank which are indirectly controlled by the Jews have continued to drive the project of globalization through the sole superpower. Besides, America’s child-killing sanctions against Iraq and Iran; late action to curb ethnic cleansing in Kosovo—genocide of the Bosnian Muslims annoyed the Muslims all over the world.

However, according to an estimate, more than 8 million Muslim (Excluding the missing persons) have been killed during war on terror and in various terror related attacks by the militant groups.

The figure of their fatalities is more than 6 or 7 million, which has, exaggeratedly been claimed by the Jews in connection with the Holocaust. While, the phony war on terror shows no end. If elected as American President, extremist Trump is likely accelerate the mass murder of the Muslims, Christians and military personnel of the US-led West in Syria, Afghanistan etc., and other vulnerable countries. He will set up more concentration camps in the Muslim countries, motivating the terrorist outfits like ISIS to target the Muslims and Christians through more acts While, in 14 European countries and America, there are laws to penalize the deniers of the Holocaust. But, who will punish the President Bush, President Obama, Zionist Jews, Israel, CIA, Mossad and RAW who committed war crimes and also remained in connivance with the Al- Qaeda and ISIS in a perennial scheme of mass murder.

Without any doubt, we can conclude that the Zionist-Israeli- led America has been taking unjustified revenge of the Holocaust from the Muslims and the Christians, including persons of some other religious communities and even those Americans who were not accountable for the Holocaust. Nonetheless, the unjustified revenge of the Holocaust continues.

Sajjad Shaukat writes on international affairs and is author of the book: US vs Islamic Militants, Invisible Balance of Power: Dangerous Shift in International Relations
Courtesy Veterans Today

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