Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
June 19, 2015

"Moderate Rebels" Spent CIA $$$ To Finance The Islamic State

ISIS-Imposed Fuel Embargo Threatens Syria’s Medical Centers  NYT - June 18 2015

Islamic State fighters are preventing fuel shipments from reaching rebel-held parts of northern Syria, causing severe shortages ...

Since the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL, seized oil-rich regions in Syria’s north and east, it has used the output to finance its efforts to build an Islamic caliphate that straddles the Syria-Iraq border.

Traders from elsewhere in Syria, such as the rebel-held regions in the northwest, have long bought locally refined petroleum products in Islamic State-controlled areas and trucked them home, where residents came to rely on them to power their cars and fuel generators that ran clinics, bakeries and other essential facilities.

But, but , but ... weren't we told that buying oil from ISIS is a great sin? Weren't alleged Syrian government purchases of oil from the Islamic State seen as a sign that Assad was in bed with Caliph Baghdadi? Indeed:

Presumably that propaganda line is now dead as the "rebels" themselves now admit buying oil from the Islamic State.

But why do they really have a shortage of fuel? Most of the oil the Islamic State sells is going through Turkey so one might ask why the "rebels" in north Syria, with direct access to the Turkish border, have no other source than buying directly from the Islamic State.

Diligent observers of the war on Syria have know for quite long that oil under Islamic State control ends up with "western" states and their proxy forces in Syria. In September 2011 the EU banned oil imports from Syria but in April 2013 the ban was rather silently lifted to allow imports of oil from areas under Syrian "rebel" control. In September 2014 a EU official told the EU parliament that some EU member states were buying oil from the Islamic State. Even in 2013, when the embargo was lifted, it was obvious that the "rebels" were largely radical islamist jihadis. As a Defense Intelligence Agency document noted already in 2012:

The Salafist, the Muslim Brotherhood, and AQI are the major forces driving the insurgency in Syria.

So some "moderate" islamists in Syria were buying oil from the other islamists in Syria. They must have spend millions on it. It is thereby very likely that a part of the $1 billion per year the CIA spends on these "moderates" ended up in the pockets of the Islamic State. This while the Syrian government was condemned for allegedly financing the Islamic State through its oil purchases.

Posted by b on June 19, 2015 at 14:00 UTC | Permalink


Obama's Dream:

1) You have to remember that the term terrorist is very flexible - it has no semantic context - its like calling someone a "motherlover" . Bin Laden is a terrorist for murdering thousands of people in one day. But so also are Assange and Snowden for revealing the truth to the American people (our enemies knew it long ago). Members of the US congress have name them "traitors' and called for them to be killed also. So the question arises, are those who plotted aggressive war and the destruction of millions of civilians in Iraq also terrorists? By definition that can never be since God is on our side. Same thing with Israel. God is also on their side, and they are only carrying out His Will. Funny thing is that al Qaeda, Isis, etc also think God is on their side too. How confusing - I wonder if anyone has told Him?

2) The middle east has proven too hard a nut to crack. So the US is intent on setting them all at each other's throats. As the salafist fanatics grow in power they will wipe out all the lesser players, and finally fight to the finish until only one is left. Then they take on Saudi Arabia. Then U.S.rael comes to the rescue - only somehow in the end the house of Saud has no more real power than the Sultan in Istanbul - a figurehead only. Guess who's really in charge? For those who say it would never happen remember that the game is about power, not money,

3) What difference you ask. Let me ask you a question. Remember the remark of Julius Caesar "I would rather be first among these men (in some wretched alpine village) than to be the second man at Rome'. Even if the US is hurting in a catastrophic collapse of Saudi Arabia it is hurting less than others. Among other things it has it's own petroleum resources, and its strategic reserves. Back to the good old days at the start of the Cold War. The US was staggering under a mountain of debt but in Europe they were literally starving and as many people died ini the post war chaos as in the gas chambers Auschwitz (don't forget the summary expulsion of millions of ethnic German's from eastern Europe). So the US will be more "powerful" after WW3, than it is now because it will be more feared and obeyed.

4) Arab oil resources are too tough a nut of US to crack right now, so Russia looks a comparatively easier target. The most important thing is to sabotage and destroy the emergence of the BRICs countries, plus strategic cooperation between Russia and Chinea, plus the emergence of alternatives to the corrupt and oppressive casino of the neoliberals, meaning US.

5) Someday when all of Jordan and Syria is a gigantic farm in greater Israel, but belonging to US Agribusiness, the memory of the Zionist fanatics who helped make it possible will be as forgotten as that of the Palestinians, or the American Indians..

Posted by: Njal | Jun 19 2015 15:35 utc | 1

Oil has been traded between the sides in Syria since the beginning. It was something that was pointed out to me by a Syrian student, long, long, before it ever got into the media. Now the media use it as a weapon to beat Asad with, but that's because they don't understand what's going on. I shouldn't think the Government forces can afford to import petroleum products these days, unless the Russians supply it on credit.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jun 19 2015 15:53 utc | 2

interesting how the EU banned oil imports from syria in 2011, only to let that slide into this.. meanwhile the EU continues to maintain it's sanctions against russia.. that is pretty cute.. supporting isis and the 'moderate (lol) rebels while maintaining sanctions on russia.. and i thought it was mostly the USA and a few others that had it's head up their ass...

Posted by: james | Jun 19 2015 16:40 utc | 3

All this too-ing and fro-ing of various 'players' seems designed to obscure the fact that when Obama wanted Karzai and al Maliki to "step down" they did so - within 3 weeks of each other and were then replaced by more US-compliant appointees.
It's impossible for me to forget that the 2003 Iraq invasion by the US was stridently and genocidally anti-Sunni. So I find Obama's "too Shia" excuse for getting rid of al Maliki (who was definitely getting Iraq back on the road to self-sufficiency) a bit hard to swallow. The Yankee refusal to supply jet fighters for the Iraqi Air Force (for which Iraq has already paid for up front) stinks of disingenuous micro-management by Obama.
Iraq's current Foreign Minister was interviewed by RT a couple of weeks ago and was asked what help Iraq required. He said Iraq does NOT need Yankee, or any other foreign, boots on the ground. But it DOES need reliable air support, which the Yankees have yet to do more than merely talk about.

The Yankees put a huge effort into transforming their 2003 invasion into a "sectarian civil war" and are now putting a similarly huge effort into keeping it that way. Neither Iraq nor Syria were 'sectarian' before the Yankees interfered.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jun 19 2015 18:57 utc | 4

Putin's statement at the St Petersburg International Economic Forum about his willingness to pull the rug from under the Assad regime makes this story secondary news. He is willing to support a 'peaceful transition' and will consult with Assad about its implementation.

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jun 19 2015 19:22 utc | 5

@4 Not sure how this equates to rug pulling.....

Posted by: dh | Jun 19 2015 19:32 utc | 6

No blatant contradictions by the New York Times or the US Empire has stopped the previous lies used to hammer Assad with, so it won't now either. Most of the people have willed it that way.

And even such pathetic, moronic, propaganda lies such as Assad works with ISIL in multiple ways, will get most suckers to question it. It's exactly why are these mass media lying sacks of shit keep repeating the pathetic propaganda, # because it works.

Posted by: tom | Jun 19 2015 20:01 utc | 7

That's : to not question it.

Posted by: tom | Jun 19 2015 20:02 utc | 8

my posts aren't getting thru.

Posted by: james | Jun 19 2015 20:55 utc | 9

i make a substantive comment - it doesn't get posted.. i make a passing comment - it gets posted... i am now 1 for 4... this will be number 5...

Posted by: james | Jun 19 2015 20:57 utc | 10

geez... com'n b.. what is up with the posting here these days?

Posted by: james | Jun 19 2015 20:57 utc | 11

The Saudis have told the French to hold back on supplying weapons to the Lebanese armed forces, the Saudis paid the expected 4 billion dollar deal and according to a Lebanese MP, the Saudis got cold feet because the Lebanese army was going to confront the Jihadis in Northern Lebanon. The US only supply Lebanon with Ist World war Bi-planes and air pistols, you would think the Lebanese would get the message,weapons must only be used for internal repression, not to protect the Lebanese from aggression from Israel or the Jihadis.

Posted by: harry law | Jun 19 2015 21:30 utc | 12

[email protected]

I read the AP version of this story and if that translation is correct Putin used the word 'was' to describe support of Assad against radical forces, that is a past tense statement. Voicing his readiness to discuss a peaceful transfer of power with Assad is clearly a change in the policy of absolute support of the regime.

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jun 19 2015 22:00 utc | 13

#10, james

geez... com'n b.. what is up with the posting here these days?
I think everyone here realizes MOA is a spook hangout after the original MOA went dark, ….

Posted by: Chipnik | Jun 19, 2015 5:58:24 AM | 56

Posted by: juannie | Jun 19 2015 22:07 utc | 14

#1 njal

i like "tough nut to crack"

it got nice ring to it......endless connotations...and it got variety,

variety is is a slice of life

if you gonna be comment gunslinger with quick draw at no.1

please include some fruit with nuts busted

just saying

Posted by: mcohen | Jun 19 2015 22:08 utc | 15

@12 You've won!!! Break out the Domaine du Castel.

Posted by: dh | Jun 19 2015 22:22 utc | 16

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jun 19, 2015 3:22:47 PM | 4
Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jun 19, 2015 6:00:47 PM | 12

You wish...
(If your Daydream has a happy ending, it hasn't finished yet)

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jun 19 2015 23:23 utc | 17

[email protected]

I'm not invested in this conflict and don't see it as a sport to be won. We don't know what Iran thinks or will do because of this new Russian policy and even if Assad leaves, this conflict will continue.

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jun 20 2015 0:12 utc | 18

@17 Perhaps you can tell us more about the 'new Russian policy'. Seems to me Assad was always open to negotiations if he could find somebody to negotiate with i.e. not the 'moderate rebels' or the jihadists but the people who pay their wages.

Posted by: dh | Jun 20 2015 1:00 utc | 19

[email protected]

You seem to not understand what Putin is saying, the 'peaceful transfer of power' is about removing Assad from the equation and trying to install a new government. Russia is already hosting negotiations with the different parties involved in this crisis.

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jun 20 2015 2:24 utc | 20

@19 Isn't that what negotiating means? What makes you think Assad will be 'removed from the equation'? How do you know he isn't open to some form of power sharing?

Posted by: dh | Jun 20 2015 2:30 utc | 21

@20 Come to think of it the question is mute. The final decision will be up to the Syrian army. Of course the army may collapse totally along with the air defence system which might suit some people.

Posted by: dh | Jun 20 2015 2:35 utc | 22

Moot not mute,darnit.

Posted by: dh | Jun 20 2015 2:39 utc | 23

Yes Way Out is a disinterested observer with no horse in this race, just a smart ass kid from Detroit here to debunk false narratives....

Posted by: Hejiminy Cricket | Jun 20 2015 3:40 utc | 24


The first week after the CIA/State/Mossad sponsored overthrow in Ukraine and the illegal Junta Coup in Kiev, in that very first week, Monsanto announced it had acquired vast agriculture leased lands, which would have required a year's worth of leg-work to find, characterize, do the legal paperwork for and come up with a lease option, ex-judicai ex-prefacto, as the Coup and looting of $38 BILLION of the Ukraine people's gold bullion was being planned in NYC, Hebron and WADCNOVA.

What stuns me is how blase USAryans are about it, even singing Star Spangled Banner as SS Great Shaytan rises up, breaks in half, and heads to the abyss,
even as they were stupefied as goats when Great Shaytan hit the rocks on 9/11.

God Bless!

Posted by: Chipnik | Jun 20 2015 4:07 utc | 25

Three big stories today Putin/Assad end game, huge dump of Saudi cables by Wikileaks, actually covered by the MSM and a hack of George Soros communications about his dirty dealings in Ukraine past and present, not covered as yet by the MSM.

The Saudi cables should provide many interesting and devious facts about the Kingdom and their machinations in the ME.

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jun 20 2015 4:14 utc | 26

here is a feed for taught

Posted by: mcohen | Jun 20 2015 12:52 utc | 28



ukraine for assad,money for nothing,gas for free

we gotta install missiles silos
custom bomb deliveries
we gotta move these bodies
we gotta steal the wheaties

by in dire straights out the back

Posted by: mcohen | Jun 20 2015 13:02 utc | 29

ISIL draws recruits not just because of their ideology, but also for the economic opportunity - isforas one can call "rape" and "theft" as economic opportunity. Indeed the lifestyle they've been living includes turning the luxurious homes of wealthy Syrians into headquarters and "barracks".

There is tons of evidence of online. These are not simple anti-ISIS fabrications.

The fighters allowed to live like kings insofar as they can loot what they like from the populace (including the virginity of the women) and squat on the properties of refugees. In the later case, this is not unlike a great number of Israelis living in the homes of Palestinians, or the large number of Germans bequeathed the homes of murdered untermensch in the Baltics.

Outrageous Islamic State book describes terrorist life like ‘plush holiday resort’

Inside the Islamic State’s capital: Red Bull-drinking jihadists, hungry civilians, crucifixions and air strikes

Luxury lifestyle of the terror group, ISIS

A tale of two caliphates: Hospitals shut down and boys sent to terror camps in Syrian stronghold... while ISIS fighters dine out in 5-star restaurants

This is, to me, more evidence of their classically fascist nature. They have no feeling for the people. They lord over them and kill those who dare oppose them.

This is the "brilliant" behavior WayOutWest constantly cheers here at MoA. This is the behavior that idiotic intellectual frauds call "an anti-imperialist struggle".

It is as pure a brand of fascism as has ever existed.

Posted by: guest77 | Jun 20 2015 15:04 utc | 30

A son of Osama Bin Laden reportedly asked the US for a death certificate for his father, according to the whistle-blowing website, Wikileaks.

A letter said to be from the US embassy in Saudi Arabia is among of a release of 60,000 Saudi government documents by Wikileaks.

This is not very promising if this is how the WikiLeaks are going to be covered.

Posted by: okie farmer | Jun 20 2015 15:18 utc | 31

Poor G, he has been reduced to relying on MSM propaganda and youtuber displays to justify his adoration of bloody Autocrats, Theocrats and their minions.

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jun 20 2015 15:26 utc | 32

Sigh. Talk about flogging a dead horse. Here's WayOutOfTouch with another total misrepresentation based on nothing more than his own perverted wishes.

"Putin's statement at the St Petersburg International Economic Forum about his willingness to pull the rug from under the Assad regime makes this story secondary news. He is willing to support a 'peaceful transition' and will consult with Assad about its implementation."

First off, Russia has always supported peace in Syria since day one. Russia has always offered to engage in talks which include the all players, yet these talks are refused by those the US has handpicked to represent "the Syrian people" even though these men, living the high life in Istanbul with the US picking up the tab, have no real connection to the Syrian people.

Sadly there is no Solomon to around to dismiss these cruel puppets who would rather see Syria sawed into two and soaked in blood than give up their phony claim that they "speak" for the Syrian people. One fact is clear: that the vast majority of the Syrian people are scared to death of this phony "revolution", and its ultra-violent enforcers.

Assad, as the head of state, will of course be consulted on the course of post-war Syria, as is only right. And he has shown, quite bravely (compared to the many of the leaders challenged by Western Color Revolutions) that he will not simply leave the Syrian people to the tender mercies of these enthusiastic murders.

Posted by: guest77 | Jun 20 2015 15:37 utc | 33

You seem to not understand what Putin is saying.... Russia is already hosting negotiations with the different parties involved in this crisis.

I'm not sure what's funnier here, that WayOutWest feels he is the only person capable of interpreting Vladimir Putin's inner thoughts, like some Medieval Pope, or that he imagines well buy that is privy to some inside information about internal Russian-Syrian dialogue. It's just... haha.

I'd ask for links for the second part of that statement, but as completely evidence-free statements of "fact" is standard operating procedure for you, its obvious that you don't have one.

Now, if you think that your dumb jokes and lame accusations are a good stand in for the evidence that an honest human being might provide when making such statements of facts, then you're even stupider than I'd imagined. And as you are someone who regularly appears here regularly to tell us how brilliant ISIS is, to then accuse me of "adoring autocrats and theocrats" well, its was already pretty obvious that your stupidity is outpaced only with your hypocrisy.

I'm not invested in this conflict and don't see it as a sport to be won.

I'll just put this list of WoW quotes here, then, as a reminder. Because you simply must be that last person here who doesn't think that you must at least be the president of your local ISIS Fan Club chapter.

The first is especially prescient considering the topic of this thread:

The Islamic Stare ... are and have been mostly self-funded for some time.

It appears that DAASH will inherit a sizeable air force from the failed Shia government in Iraq. I imagine there will be many volunteers to fly these aircraft against Assad's regime and eventually against the Israeli Air Force.

It's quite amazing how adept the leaders of the Islamic State have been in orchestrating, first the West and now the Regimes it plans to conquer ... So far every major move the IS has made has seemed calculated and brilliant in its outcome, what is their next move?

The fact that Israel once attacked Syrian forces is not proof of a policy of support for the rebels it is just an incident that has already been explained

The Islamic State and al-Nusra are and always will be sworn enemies of Israel and the US.

The propaganda trying to conflate the Islamic State and now al-Nusra with Israel is coming from Iran who are trying desperately to deflect attention away from their share of the responsibility for these conflicts.

Hezbollah's ... internal security system has been shown to be incompetent and now internal trust is destroyed.

Lebanon has suffered greatly because of the existence of this proxy militia [Hezbollah] especially because of the July War.

I mean, for real. You don't have a horse in this fight? You have a fucking stableful.

Posted by: guest77 | Jun 20 2015 16:20 utc | 34

thanks juannie..

i get a kick out of the EU removing the sanctions on isis, or the moderate rebels, but keeping them on russia.. guess big daddy warbucks on wall st is calling the shots with the EU..

Posted by: james | Jun 20 2015 18:11 utc | 35

It's not really a surprise that Putin is giving Assad the bum's rush because Putin is and has always been a pragmatic Autocrat and a smart capitalist who knows when to cut his losses. He already has a new bloody Autocrat to play war games with in Egypt al-Sisi who can actually pay for the arms he desires.

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jun 20 2015 18:26 utc | 36

Neither Obama not Putin are exemplars of clarity, and divining their intentions from their statements is not straightforward. This is true with most politicians, except for the most hot headed, like Erdogan. Concerning latest Putin on Syria, Daily Star of Lebanon summarizes him as follows:
The Daily Star
SAINT PETERSBURG, Russia / BEIRUT: Russian President Vladimir Putin said Friday he is ready to “push” Syrian leader Bashar Assad toward introducing reforms in the war-torn country, while vowing to continue to support his ally.

“We are ready to work with Assad so that he engages in a process of political change,” Putin said at the Saint Petersburg International Economic Forum. “We are ready to push President Assad so that he engages in discussions with the ‘healthy’ opposition with a view toward political reforms. It is totally feasible.”

This sounds very much like Obama coaxing Israel toward peace process. Nowadays, to be a serious power, you must have some drains where you can flush your money. Additionally, you have to pretend that this is not a total waste. Optionally and occasionally, you try to get something out of it. In my opinion, Syria is not close to the point where it has to be abandoned, so it will not be. The armed opposition is nowhere close to being self-supporting, the conduit of aid through Lebanon and Syrian coast is probably closing, southern front is limited and support from Turkey is copious, but there is a good chance that it can be cut by the next government.

In short, Putin will not cut support to Assad without some looming disaster, and the disaster is not immediate by any means. A talk about "healthy opposition" is on its face delusional, but totally in Putin's style.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jun 20 2015 20:49 utc | 37

[email protected]

What you point out may be true but other developments at this forum seem to reinforce my initial assumptions. Russia and Saudi Arabia announced multiple agreements also at this meeting including possible weapons deals. Two years ago when the Saudis offered to buy large quantities of Russian arms the deal hinged on Russia removing its support for the Assad regime and that was when Russia was in a much stronger economic condition. These agreements are much larger and include many Nuke power plants.

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Jun 21 2015 0:27 utc | 38

I would question the statement that "Putin … knows when to cut his losses". He seems quite careful it taking positions, but I would have to think about an example of "Putting cutting his losses". The only example I could think of right now is letting Georgia take over Adjaria, a "rebellious" autonomic republic on the border with Turkey, but it was never clear that he had a stake there. Economically, I do not think that Russia is hurting enough to reconsider strategic positions, in actuality, sanctions can be good for internal investments in agriculture and industry, substituting for imports and stimulating employment; of course there are losses too but the sum total is not a blow. Oil prices seemingly stabilized at much higher level then during the previous slump. Most importantly, while the government of Syria is not doing as well as I projected, the rebels are not doing as well as you projected, both sides are severely depleted but quite stable, so the game changer has to come from outside.

And I do not think that it come come from Gulf money. The agreements you have cited are but hints, useful signals, but useful for what? KSA perceives lack of cooperation from NATO so it wants to show that it has other options, while they made gigantic arms orders now, to buy consent for their war in Yemen, they want to show that they have means to stop it. Likewise, Russia surely has some wishes concerning Syria and Iran, and it may help to exhibit other options. At a guess, the cooperation between Marxist Kurds and their "FSA allies" and the government is perhaps much worse than it should, and this could be what Putin meant by "healthy opposition".

Note that Putin made deals with al-Sisi who is propped with Gulf money, and the rationale seems two-fold: (1) Russia can supply arms and reactors for much less money than the West (2) al-Sisi does not have any sympathy for Syrian rebels. For that matter, he even did not like to be rent-a-thug in Yemen (he made some bombing runs if I recall, unlike Pakistan he cannot ignore KSA completely).

Lastly, I think that KSA rulers are bonkers and they have mixed record in keeping major promises. Right now they seem to renege on promises to finance weapon purchases for Lebanese military. If they are displease with Lebanese progress in Arsal area, why they offered those monies to begin with? This is but one episode showing their difficulties in playing a long game.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jun 21 2015 5:35 utc | 39

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