Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Dangerous Crossroads: Russian Naval Exercises Off the Syrian Coast. U.S. Military Deployment in the East Mediterranean

by Prof Michel Chossudovsky, Global Research:

The Russian based media Pravda reported on April 11, that “Russian warships kicked off naval exercises near the coast of Syria”. According to the Moscow Times, “The Russian Navy is reportedly scheduled to launch firing drills off the coast of Syria on April 11 (Wednesday) amid fears of an imminent U.S. airstrike against Syria following a suspected chemical attack”.

We are at a Dangerous crossroads: According to the report (which has not been addressed by the Western media): on Wednesday. U.S. President Donald Trump later directly warned Russia that missiles were “coming” to Syria after blaming Damascus for an alleged deadly gas attack in the town of Douma.”

There Is a Russian Deep State and It Wants War with the United States

by Dave Hodges, The Common Sense Show:

Many are surprised to learn that Russia has a Deep State which parallels the American Deep State. The one overriding difference, as I have discovered, is that the Russian Deep State is not dedicated to the overthrow of their government and its processes, so long as their will is carried out. On the other hand, the American Deep State is dedicated to the complete eradication of all civil liberties and the installation of a draconian police state where rulers’ whims constitute the rule of law. America is witnessing a Bolshevik Revolution in which nothing is sacred enough to preserve, including the lives of 315 million Americans.

The Russian oligarchs have no interest in population reduction and the destruction of present rule of law. However, the Russian oligarchs are friendly and cooperate with Rothschild banking interests because it is in their best interest to do so. The transport of Russian natural gas and oil interests are given priority. Wars are fought and deals transacted that ultimately strengthen the New World Order’s grip on Russia. The oligarchs (ie Russia’s Deep State) have seemingly accepted the inevitable fall of Russia in terms of economic independence and national sovereignty.

Explained: Washington’s REAL Mission in Syria

by Stephen Lendman, 21st Century Wire:

Just as Bush the Younger had done, and Nobel Laureate Obama before him, and Clinton before that – President Donald J. Trump and the US government are lying to Americans and the world.

US involvement in Syria has nothing to do with regional peace, stability and security, nothing to do with combatting ISIS.

It’s all about killing a nation, destroying its sovereignty, partitioning it for easier control, removing its legitimate leadership, installing puppet rule, plundering it, exploiting its people, eliminating an Israeli rival, isolating Iran, and enriching the US military, industrial, security complex from endless aggression.

The U.S. and Saudi Arabia Are About to Make More Disastrous and Idiotic Mistakes – Part 2

0

by Michael Krieger, Liberty Blitzkrieg:

In Part 1 of this series, I detailed the recent aggressive power plays initiated by 30-something Saudi princeling Mohamed bin Salman (MBS), who is effectively the absolute leader of Saudi Arabia at this time. I also highlighted how 30-something U.S. princeling Jared Kushner, son-in-law of U.S. President Donald Trump, may have been involved in MBS’s scheming during an unannounced visit to Saudi Arabia a little over a week before the purge hammer dropped. Today’s post will focus on what I think this means for the future of the Middle East, as well as U.S. imperial ambitions.

Before I get started, I want to make something clear. I don’t think I’m Nostradamus or anything. These posts are based on the assumption that certain realities remain in place in the months and years ahead. The first is that Mohamed bin Salman’s attempt to consolidate power will prove successful, at least long enough for him to make more extremely stupid mistakes. The second assumption is that Donald Trump will continue to foolishly give this princeling a blank check when it comes to whatever insane aggressions he pursues within the region.

It’s perfectly clear that MBS views recent setbacks in Syria, where Saudi ISIS forces were routed by Russia and Assad, as unacceptable. As such, he’s looking for another place to fight a proxy war with Iran. Never mind the fact that his war in Yemen has been a total failure and humanitarian disaster, MBS doesn’t appear to be someone who lets one failure get in way of future failures. He appears to have chosen Lebanon as the place for his next chaotic adventure.

In that regard, I found a post published at Moon of Alabama extremely informative. Here’s an excerpt from that piece:

Four days ago we asked: Is The “Moderate Al-Qaeda” Set To Target Hizbullah?. The implied answer in that piece was “Yes, the war is coming to Lebanon.”

Today the Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Al-Hariri resigned with a statement issues from Saudi Arabia on the Saudi Arabian TV station Al Arabia (video). This is the opening shot of the war.

The Saudi-Israeli-U.S. axis will lose this war while Iran and Russia will win from it.

Earlier this week the extremely sectarian Saudi Minister for Gulf Affairs Thamer al-Sabhan had threatened Hizbullah in Lebanon and announced surprises:

Firebrand Saudi State Minister for Gulf Affairs Thamer al-Sabhan on Monday called for “toppling Hizbullah” and promised “astonishing” developments in “the coming days.”

Referring to his Sunday tweet about the Lebanese government, the minister said: “I addressed my tweet to the government because the Party of Satan (Hizbullah) is represented in it and it is a terrorist party. The issue is not about toppling the government but rather that Hizbullah should be toppled.”

“The coming developments will definitely be astonishing,” al-Sabhan added.

While the fighting in Syria and Iraq was ongoing, Lebanon was kept at peace. With the wars ending Lebanon is again the place where proxy fights are carried out.

The resignation of Hariri is intended to provoke a constitutional crisis in Lebanon and to prevent new parliament elections. The further Saudi plan is likely to evolve around these elements:

  • The Trump administration will announce new sanctions against Hizbullah and against Lebanon in general.
  • The Saudi government will slip some of its al-Qaeda/ISIS proxy fighters from Syria and Iraq into Lebanon (possibly via Turkey by sea). It will finance local Lebanese terror operations.
  • There will be new assassination attempts, terror attacks and general rioting by Sunni extremist elements against Christians and Shia in Lebanon.
  • The U.S. will try to press the Lebanese army into a war against Hizbullah.
  • Israel will try to provoke and divert Hizbullah’s attention by new shenanigans at the Lebanese and Syrian border. It will NOT start a war.

The plan is unlikely to succeed:

  • The Lebanese people as a whole have no interest in a new civil war.
  • The Lebanese army will not get involved on any specific side but will try to keep everyone calm.
  • Sanctions against Hizbullah will hit all of Lebanon, including Sunni interests.
  • A new Sunni prime minister will be found and installed, replacing the resigned Saudi puppet.
  • Russian and Iranian economic interests will find a new market in Lebanon. Russian companies will engage in Lebanese gas and oil extraction in the Mediterranean and replace U.S. involvement.

The miscalculated Saudi/U.S./Israeli plan against Hizbullah can be understood as a helpless tantrum after their defeat in Syria and Iraq.

In their manic attempts to push back against perceived Iranian (and Russian) influence the Saudis and the U.S. have enabled Iran (and Russia) to gain better and more secure standing that they could ever have hoped to achieve otherwise. Why the Saudis think that their new adventure in Lebanon will have a different result is beyond me.

I completely agree with the above analysis. Everything Saudi princeling MBS has attempted overseas has been an unmitigated disaster, and I expect his Lebanon plan and any that follow will end the same way. The reason this is so important to the world is Donald Trump has completely attached himself to this reckless lunatic. I’ve been warning about this all year, but in case you have any doubts.

When it comes to the incredible stupidity of Trump going all in with this guy, I came across two perfect paragraphs written by Daniel Larison in The American Conservative.

Trump’s embrace of the Saudis has been one of the greatest blunders of his presidency to date, and today he has reaffirmed that he has profoundly bad judgment when it comes to this relationship. There is no reason to have confidence in Salman and his son after the last two and a half years, and there is certainly nothing to support the claim that they know what they are doing. The war on Yemen has become a quagmire for the Saudis and their allies and a catastrophe for the people of Yemen. Trump supports it. The campaign against Qatar has been a useless and ill-advised misadventure that is also hurting members of the Saudi-led bloc. Trump has been an enthusiastic cheerleader. The crown prince is carrying out a massive purge that will drive away foreign investment in the short term and destabilize the kingdom. Once again, Trump is only too happy to approve of anything the Saudi government does, no matter how dangerous or despicable it may be.

Read More @ LibertyBlitzkrieg.com

Are We Brewing a New Feudalism?

by Paul Craig Roberts, Paul Craig Roberts:

The answer to the question is “YES.”  The large bailed-out creditors will end up with the property of the non-bailed-out debtors who are being pushed deeper into debt with “bail-out loans” and fees and penalties for missed debt payments. Write-offs for the One Percent, and more indebtedness for everyone else.

Turn your mind to the economy.  The US has a work force of 164,000,000.  The unemployment forecast from the work closedowns is 30%.  That would mean 49,000,000 people who are potential rioters. (We are half way there with today’s report of a 16% unemployment rate with 22 million unemployed). Many of these people were already living paycheck to paycheck, could not raise $400, and their debts leave them no discretionary income.  As they could barely service their debts when employed, how do they service them when unemployed and when their small businesses are closed and incurring costs but have no revenues?  Loans further indebt them. The cash payouts to the unemployed might cover food and housing but will not service their debts.  

2 Dead, 14 Injured As Venezuelan Soldiers Open Fire On Civilians Near Brazil Border: WaPo

0

from ZeroHedge:

Update: Americo De Grazia, Deputy of the National Assembly, has confirmed on Twitter that a second person has died in the border clashes:

Just hours after Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said a U.S. humanitarian aid convoy for Venezuela could provoke clashes and create a pretext for removing President Nicolas Maduro, a staunch Russian ally, from power by force,  The Washington Post reports, according to an eye-witnesses and community leaders, that Venezuelan soldiers opened fire on a group of civilians attempting to keep open a segment of the southern border with Brazil for deliveries of humanitarian aid, leading to multiple injuries and the first fatality.

Saudi Arabia casts itself as the victim, in what it calls a “declaration of war” by Lebanon

0

by Alex Chrisoforou, The Duran:

Saudi Arabia says Lebanon has declared war.

Last week The Duran reported that on Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri’s rage filled resignation address from the Saudi capital of Riyadh.

Hariri, who is a duel Lebanese-Saudi citizen, leads the Lebanese party Future Movement which forms part of the March 14 Allience in the Lebanese parliament. The future movement attracts few Shi’a and Christian voters and has been openly critical of Hezbollah’s assistance to Syria in its war against al-Qaeda, FSA and ISIS.

During his resignation speech, he blasted Iran and Hezbollah in a manner that is highly reminiscent of Israeli propaganda. In a phrase echoing remarks made by Israeli leader Benjamin Netanyahu, Hariri said that “Iran’s hand in the region would be cut off”, although Hariri, like Netanyahu, failed to explain how Iran has a ‘hand in the region’ in a way that violates any norms of international law. Hariri then stated that he feared for his life, should he remain in office, while providing no evidence of credible threats to his safety.

The Duran reported that the timing of Saad Hariri’s resignation was more significant than the content of the resignation speech.

The speech came shortly after Hariri met with Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman and only hours after the CIA published suspicious documents which perversely try to link Iran with al-Qaeda.

The fact of the matter is, as everyone except the CIA seems to know, that al-Qaeda is a declared enemy of Iran and Iran is a declared enemy of al-Qaeda, both in terms of geo-strategic interests as well as ideology.

In 1998, Iran almost went to war with Afghanistan to avenge the slaughter of Iranian diplomats by al-Qaeda who at the time were headquartered in Taliban controlled Afghanistan.

More recently, Iran has fought with Iraqi and Syrian troops in their war against al-Qaeda and ISIS, an organisation which was founded by members of a group called al-Qaeda in Iraq.

Moreover, Iranians are targeted by al-Qaeda terrorists across the world in a ruthless fashion.

The absurdity of the CIA’s claim that Iran and al-Qaeda had attempted to work together is not only insulting to those with a sense of reality, but it obscures the fact that in Syria and Libya before that, the US has allied itself with al-Qaeda forces. The US in fact founded al-Qaeda in the 1980s when it was known as the Islamic Unity of Afghanistan Mujahideen. Members of the group even met with Ronald Reagan in the White House.

Zerohedge is reporting that as expected, Saudi Arabia has cast itself as the victim of external Shia plotting after its internal weekend of chaos which included a missile attack from Yemen, the deaths of two princes and other high officials within a mere 24 hours, and an aggressive crackdown against dissent in the royal family which saw close to a dozen princes placed under house arrest. And as Al Jazeera noted, in this Saudi version of ‘Game of Thrones’, the 32-year-old Mohammed Bin Salman (MBS) shows that he is willing to throw the entire region into jeopardy to wear the royal gown.

While Saudi Arabia has long blamed Iran for sowing unrest in the region, this evening’s declaration by Saudi Gulf affairs minister Thamer al-Sabhan that Lebanon has “declared war” against the kingdom is truly an historic first. But perhaps the biggest problem is that international media is currently uncritically spreading the statement, whereas what such a bizarre claim actually warrants is laughter.

Nassim Nicholas Taleb sums it up basic geography lesson in this tweet below…

“Either the media is stupid, or Saudi rulers are stupid, or both. Lebanon did not formally declare war and there is no common border.”

Read More @ TheDuran.com

LEAKED PENTAGON DOC SAYS RUSSIA HAS MASSIVE NUKE ‘KANYON’ CAPABLE OF RENDERING A COUNTRY’S COAST UNINHABITABLE

0

by Geoffrey Grider, Now The End Begins:

THE RUSSIAN GOVERNMENT IS REPORTEDLY DEVELOPING A CITY-KILLING TORPEDO, CALLED KANYON, THAT WOULD ALLEGEDLY LEAVE A COUNTRY’S COASTLINE UNINHABITABLE FOR DECADES.

“So the king of the north shall come, and cast up a mount, and take the most fenced cities: and the arms of the south shall not withstand, neither his chosen people, neither shall there be any strength to withstand.” Daniel 11:15 (KJV)

EDITOR’S NOTE: The Russian doomsday torpedo has twice the destructive power of anything in the arsenal of the American military. Obviously, this weapon was designed for offense and not defense. If you draw a straight line from Jerusalem due north, where does that take you? Moscow, where the king of the north will be from. 

The terrifying news, which sounds more likely to come from a “James Bond” film, was actually leaked from the Pentagon’s report on nuclear weapons posturing.

The “doomsday torpedo” has been on the U.S. military’s radar for several years and was first revealed publicly by the Washington Free Beacon in 2015. Kanyon, an autonomous underwater vehicle carrying a lethal 100-megaton thermonuclear weapon, is reportedly being designed by the Russians to attack coastal areas, major cities, naval bases, and other sea ports.

The massive nuclear payload of Kanyon would equal the explosion of 100 million tons of TNT and is twice as powerful as the most powerful thermonuclear weapon ever tested, according to Popular Mechanics.

Perhaps even worse than the immediate devastation of a nuclear attack by this Russia robot sub, experts add that the radioactive fallout from such a powerful torpedo would leave the contaminated area off-limits to humans for the next 100 years. Russia’s alleged use of the radioactive isotope Cobalt-60 is to blame for the long recovery time.

Read More @ NowTheEndBegins.com

Is Someone Attacking the U.S. Navy?

0

by Jim Rickards, Daily Reckoning:

I’m most known for my research into currency wars, international monetary economics and financial warfare.

But I also jointly run a service, Rickards & Massengill’s Defense Technology Alert, that focuses specifically on the defense sector.

That’s why some recent tragic incidents involving the U.S. Navy have captured my attention.

There have been two deadly incidents within the past two months, in which Navy warships have collided with merchant vessels.

In the first incident, seven sailors were killed in June when the destroyer USS Fitzgeraldcollided with a cargo ship near Yokosuka, Japan.

Then early yesterday morning, the USS John McCain, a ship just like the Fitzgerald, collided with an oil tanker near the Strait of Malacca, close to Singapore. Sadly, 10 sailors are lost.

What’s going on here?

Is the Navy losing situational awareness? Are the crews not properly trained? Are they not keeping watch?

We don’t know at this point. It’s all under investigation. But there’s one possibility I want to raise, and I want to be very clear about this:

I’m raising the possibility for public debate. It’s speculation on my part; I do not have any hard evidence. So I want to be clear that this is not something based on any actual intelligence I have.

But if there were just one incident, if one civilian vessel had collided with one destroyer, the assumption would be that it was just an accident. Maybe there was some equipment failure or the crew on watch failed to detect the ship for whatever reason.

But when the same basic incident happens twice, you have to raise your eyebrows. When you have a low-probability event that happens twice, in other words, the likelihood of coincidence becomes infinitesimal.

You have to basically multiply one low probability by another low probability, and what you end up with is an extremely remote chance that both events are purely accidental.

Is it possible that our adversaries, whether North Korea or Russia or perhaps even China — who are extremely good at hacking — have hacked into the navigation systems of these civilian vessels?

Could they be using them as, in effect, battering rams or propeller torpedoes to crash into our naval vessels?

I started a discussion about this topic on Twitter. Here’s what I posted:

“Second tragic collision of U.S. warship with merchant vessel raises suspicion of nav system hacking on merchantmen. Are we already at war?”

It received a lot of comments. One was a very interesting comment from former Vermont governor and presidential candidate Howard Dean.

Dean said, “It’s a possibility. I’m not sure if maybe experts talked about this. How about putting some knowledgeable intelligence folks on it?”

I agree completely. Again, I don’t want to jump to conclusions. But we should at least consider the possibility that someone’s combining cyberwarfare with kinetic techniques to attack our ships. In other words, hacking into a system to turn a civilian merchant vessel into a battering ram to attack our vessels remotely.

This is something the Russians have worked on. That’s not speculation. We do have intelligence that the Russians have actually tried techniques like this on vessels in the Black Sea.

I’m not the only one asking questions about these incidents, though. Here’s what a former Navy information warfare specialist and current chief intelligence officer at a cyber intelligence service has to say about yesterday’s collision:

“When you are going through the Strait of Malacca, you can’t tell me that a Navy destroyer doesn’t have a full navigation team going with full lookouts on every wing and extra people on radar.”

He adds:

“There’s something more than just human error going on because there would have been a lot of humans to be checks and balances.”

Read More @ DailyReckoning.com

The Israel Lobby’s Hidden Hand in the Theft of Iraqi and Syrian Oil

by Agha Hussain and Whitney Webb, MintPress News:

The outsized role of U.S. Israel lobby operatives in abetting the theft of Syrian and Iraqi oil reveals how this powerful lobby also facilitates more covert aspects of U.S.-Israeli cooperation and the implementation of policies that favor Israel.

KIRKUK, IRAQ — “We want to bring our soldiers home. But we did leave soldiers because we’re keeping the oil,” President Trump stated on November 3, before adding, “I like oil. We’re keeping the oil.”

Though he had promised a withdrawal of U.S. troops from their illegal occupation of Syria, Trump shocked many with his blunt admission that troops were being left behind to prevent Syrian oil resources from being developed by the Syrian government and, instead, kept in the hands of whomever the U.S. deemed fit to control them, in this case, the U.S.-backed Kurdish-majority militia known as the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

US Bombs Syria To Cover Up Lack Of Evidence On Chem Attacks, Discredits Own Claims By Doing So

by Brandon Turbeville, Activist Post:

After yet another example of brazen Western aggression against Syria, the United States, UK, and France are once again demonstrating to the world who exactly is the biggest threat to world peace. The entire March 14 assault on Syria by the three powers has been justified by the West as a reaction to an alleged chemical weapons attack that allegedly took place in Douma weeks ago.

The word “allegedly” is incredibly important here because not only is it merely alleged that the Syrian military conducted a chemical weapons attack, it is also merely alleged that the attack even took place. More on that in a minute.

But during the debate about the chemical weapons attack – who conducted it and if it happened at all – the West has claimed to be one hundred percent sure with no doubt whatsoever that the Syrian military personally directed by Bashar al-Assad used chemical weapons against civilians in a battle it was fighting and winning against terrorists at precisely the worst possible opportunity to do so. This is despite virtually all of the evidence to the contrary.

Russia And China Are Developing Impressive New Weapons Systems As They Prepare For War Against The United States

0

by Michael Snyder, End Of The American Dream:

Most wars are won well in advance, and Russia and China are both feverishly preparing to win the next major world war between global superpowers. Meanwhile, the U.S. military has been focused on “fighting terrorism” and projecting U.S. power in a “post-Cold War” environment. Of course the truth is that a new “Cold War” has now erupted, and Russia and China can both see the writing on the wall and they are both developing impressive new weapons systems. Unfortunately, our military planners seem to think that war with Russia and/or China is not very likely, and as a result our strategic forces have aged nearly to the point of obsolescence. In fact, a 60 Minutes investigation discovered that our nuclear forces were still using technology from the 1960s and 1970s, including rotary phones and enormous 8-inch floppy disks. Most Americans assume that we would easily win a military conflict with Russia and/or China due to our “vast superiority”, but in this article you will see that is not necessarily the case.

Microsoft lands $21 billion contract to arm US soldiers with futuristic augmented-reality headsets

from RT:

The Pentagon will pay Microsoft billions of dollars to build augmented-reality headsets for its soldiers. The devices will be backed by the tech firm’s Azure cloud computing services, which was compromised by hackers last year.

The contract was announced on Wednesday and could earn Microsoft up to $21.88 billion over 10 years. Back in 2018, the US Army gave Microsoft $480 million to develop a prototype headset built around the company’s HoloLens technology. Based on its performance, Microsoft will now provide up to 120,000 of the headsets, dubbed the Integrated Visual Augmented System, or IVAS.