Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
July 29, 2016

Siege Shows U.S., Concern Trolls Hypocrisy

Do you remember the outcry over the siege of Ramadi by Iraqi and U.S. forces? When those forces expressed little concern for the civilians who were not let go by the ISIS fighters occupying the city?

No? You do not remember those concerns? The outcry from Amnesty, HRW, the UN and other organization?

That is probably because there were none.

Dec 2 2015: Iraqi forces surround Ramadi, but it could be a long siege

Iraqi troops and militias backed by U.S.-led airstrikes have surrounded the key city of Ramadi and appear poised to launch a new attempt to wrest it from the Islamic State group.
On Monday, the Iraqi military dropped leaflets into the city,
But residents told The Associated Press on Tuesday that the militants have clamped down, setting up checkpoints across the city to monitor civilians' movements and prevent anyone from going.
When Maan was asked about the high number of civilians that could be trapped inside Ramadi once the fight gets underway, the Interior Ministry spokesman said he was confident they would be able to flee "to a safe place."

"We are focusing now on the enemy only," he added.

Today Ramadi is back in the hands of the Iraqi government.

But there is another big and outdrawn siege ongoing - this time of a large city in Syria. One where the population and the enemy are under constant bombardment. Where the population is prevented from leaving. Where mass casualties of civilians are caused by misdirected airstrikes.

That city is Manbij.

June 11: Siege of IS bastion in north Syria traps thousands

Thousands of civilians were under siege Saturday in an Islamic State group stronghold surrounded by US-backed forces in northern Syria[...]
"Tens of thousands of civilians still there can't leave as all the routes out of town are cut," the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitor's head Rami Abdel Rahman said.

Six weeks on the siege of Manbij continues.

July 25: US-backed fighters renew offer for IS to leave Syrian town

U.S.-backed fighters in northern Syria renewed an offer Monday to Islamic State militants in Manbij, saying that if they allow civilians to leave the besieged northern town IS fighters will be allowed to leave too and will not be attacked.
Monday's offer by the SDF-linked Manbij Military Council came days after the extremists ignored an earlier, 48-hour offer to leave the town safely with just their "individual weapons."

Again, like in Ramadi, there is no protest from Amnesty, HRW, the UN or any other concern peddlers over the fate of the city and its people. There was and is no outcry over the siege or the casualties in Manbij by any of the usual subjects.

Now another, third siege happens and this one exposes the utter hypocrisy of the United States and the concern trolls organizations it controls.

July 28: US Envoy: Syrian Offer of Safe Passage for Aleppo Civilians ‘Chilling’

US Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power condemned Syria’s leaflets, urging civilians in rebel-held East Aleppo to flee and offering them safe passage and access to temporary shelters “chilling,” insisting that the civilians must never trust a government “that’s bombed & starved them.”

Syria’s military has increased its control over the area surrounding Aleppo recently, controlling all roads leading into the east. Eastern Aleppo is controlled mostly by al-Qaeda’s Nusra Front, ..

To the U.S. propagandists the siege of east-Aleppo and the offer to leave it is "chilling", while the siege of Manbij or Ramadi never created any such bad feelings. How come?

The insurgents in east-Aleppo, mostly of al-Qaeda in Syria, are preventing any civilians from leaving through the designated corridors the besieging forces offer.

Where is the condemnation of that?

Instead we hear a whole army of concern trolls, the IRC, the UN, Amnesty and various other propaganda shops demanding that civilians "are allowed" to stay(!) in the besieged area


Posted by b on July 29, 2016 at 18:47 UTC | Permalink


The US and its puppets want the civilians to stay in the conflict area to hold back the Syrian Army's advancement.

Posted by: Steve | Jul 29 2016 19:03 utc | 1

And now they murdered another 45 civilians,

Posted by: Robz | Jul 29 2016 19:14 utc | 2

As usual.....when the rot is in the stink of the US will never go away.....

Posted by: notlurking | Jul 29 2016 19:15 utc | 3

An acquaintance of mine who resides near a major US Air Force base tells me several USAF doomsday aircraft are inflight. I have a feeling that the fecal matter is about to come into direct contact with the rotary oscillator.

Just me opinion.

Posted by: ALberto | Jul 29 2016 19:32 utc | 4

Are US officials essentially acquiescing to Aleppo falling to the regime? Yes and no, said Syria expert Aron Lund.

“Well, it is falling and they’re not doing what would be required to stop it, like pushing in lots of resources to the rebels, hitting the pro-Assad forces or grounding the air forces bombing them,” Lund, a nonresident Syria analyst at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, told Al-Monitor July 28. “But I don’t see how that is ‘letting’ it fall. It seems the US can’t stop it happening except by doing things that they really don’t want to do.”
It seems the US is out of options especially 'Right to Protect' and can now only delay the inevitable, even with the promise of amnesty for the Jihadis and safe passage out of the area for civilians, that clown Samantha Power still calls those offers 'chilling'. Seems no matter what Russia/Syria do they are wrong in US eyes.

Posted by: harrylaw | Jul 29 2016 19:39 utc | 5

thanks b... excellent.. you nailed it!

Posted by: james | Jul 29 2016 20:39 utc | 6

Rather rich for someone whose motorcade knocked over and killed a 9-year-old boy in Cameroon (en route to a photo-op with a charity) to call Syria's offers of amnesty to surrendering jihadis and of safe passage out of east Aleppo for civilians "chilling".

Posted by: Jen | Jul 29 2016 21:36 utc | 7

The thought of a Hell Bitch administration filled with these evil harpies like Power scares the shite out of me.

Posted by: dahoit | Jul 29 2016 21:55 utc | 8

@9 Jen, 'Rather rich for someone whose motorcade knocked over and killed a 9-year-old boy in Cameroon/...'

Thanks for reminding me. The US-'Amnesty, HRW, the UN' war-prop detail is in full swing. The Olympics are in play ... Russian dopers! The full panoply of US media-dope is being pushed along every dimension. Don't read DNC's emails ... look at the Martians, I mean Russians, who liberated them - maybe. Not.

Thanks for redirecting my attention to the sordid reality, Jen ...

Syria rebels prevent civilians from leaving Aleppo: monitor

Syria’s five-year war has killed more than 280,000 people and displaced millions.

Another quarter million notches on the Nobel Peace Prize Laureate's gun stock. Already 'really good at killing', he's still getting 'better' everyday. How now will the Clinton cow ever match him?

Shock and awe in Syria as the 50 dancing diplomats prescribe: Hillary and Her Hawks.

And bigger, better wars of her own. Light up all of Europe in the interests of regime change in Russia.

I hear the Ride of the Valkryies was the favorite theme at the DNC's convention. The fat ladies are getting ready to sing.

Posted by: jfl | Jul 29 2016 22:08 utc | 9

You know the Yankees have lost the plot when the foundations of their tut tutting about the Moral High Ground in Syria is a seamless carpet of myopia, rumours, and MSM lies.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 29 2016 22:45 utc | 10

You know what I find "chilling"? Any words that come out of uber-hawk Samantha Powers' mouth.

Posted by: WorldBLee | Jul 29 2016 23:01 utc | 11

In the 'News' reports on the Aleppo siege I heard this morning, the Exceptional Yankees even managed to rake up a (crocodile) tear-stained reference from Save The Children. Is every single NGO with US affiliations dishonest, docile, obedient and corrupt?

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 29 2016 23:02 utc | 12

Can anyone explain to me the derivation of 'Exceptional'?

I mean, we know 'Shock and Awe' is derived from The Chosen's 'Shekinah, Shechinah, or Schechinah (Biblical Hebrew: שכינה‎‎), is the English transliteration of a Hebrew noun meaning "dwelling" or "settling place" or "our land now" and denotes the dwelling or settling of the divine presence of Jaweh and all His cosmic glory.'

But what is this dog-whistle litmus-test 'Exceptional'? Is that a PNAC secret-password, does it derive from Hebrew like 'Skock and Awe' to describe the next evolution, where they load all the 'Non-Exceptional' into cattle cars bound for work camps in the hollowed-out Rust Belt? Is 'Exceptional' like Pol Pot's 'Ankor', the Party of the Chosen, and like Maaduro in Venezuala, we'll be forcedcto labor in the fields to feed ourselves, after TPP redirects the energy-economy to SEAsia?

They all use it in their speeches to us, Bloomberg was very pointed in saying we must not let unexceptional 'con men' like bankrupt Donald Trump disturb the smoothly transformed profit-extraction of Thr Exceptionals, the בלתי רגיל, יוצא-דופן now with $19T in onerous odious synthetic fraudulent credit-debt transferred to the Public Treasury.

Do The Takers, or should we say, The Undertakers, have a deep psychological need for validation, and will go to 'exceptional' levels of psychopathic manifestation to get it? "The Equities Scheme is ate all-time highs, is it time to get back into the market?" WTF?

The Book of Knowledge: The Keys of Enoch might have a clue. Is EHYEH ASHER EHYEH the root of an 'Exceptional', 'I am wahat I am' and 'wahat will be, will be'? Que sera?
Are They just phonetically using 'Exceptional' in English to mean EL ELOHE ISRAEL in Hebrew, their Jaweh of Israel?

Teach me, rabbi.

Posted by: Cho Nyawinh | Jul 29 2016 23:49 utc | 13


I had the opportunity to work for a US national NGO cross-profiteering with a US-based foreign NGO, using the 'Won't you please help?" story of war refugees from Myanmar to rake in $100,000s in donations at national, a real zinger, so, of course, we had to form a 'mission' and go put up some 'rice tents' and take a lot of pictures with orphans clinging to barbed wire.

Then we met with a local recipient of the aid who just happened to speak English, and she describes how thesmall US-based donee was using our grants to build his own private plantation estate in the jungle, as a 'rescue center' for orphans, primarily girls in their teens, wouldn't you know, and there seemed to be a lot of other NGOs on the border there visited his plantation.

We did our 'mission' thing and made national proud with our promotional videos they use everytime donations slow, then last month got a note from that English-speaking local that the local NGO guy running the 'mission' as donee was arrested for running underaged orphan girls, and his nice retirement plantation he was building with National donations was busted as procurer for other NGOs.

Guys, you get tired of driving around aimlessly in brand new Range Rovers, and it's only human to relax after all that hard NGO mission work, drinking brandy all night with teen-aged refugee girls, on our charitable donations.

We're the Exceptionals!

Posted by: Cho Nyawinh | Jul 30 2016 0:12 utc | 14


In the world of 'education' (those people we sometimes call teachers) the following is the definition:


"The definition of exceptional is someone or something that is high above average or someone who needs special educational help because of mental or physical challenges.
An example of exceptional is an IQ of 140.
An example of exceptional is a mentally handicapped child who needs a tutor."

I suspect AmeriKKKans think of the US in the first sense, but I truly believe it is the second example that is the accurate one.

Posted by: rg the lg | Jul 30 2016 1:17 utc | 15

Cho@13- exceptional=place holder for the global mafia. Jewry is having it's fire walk with me moment before being replaced by a cybernetic goon squad to the golden billion.

Posted by: hejiminy cricket | Jul 30 2016 1:41 utc | 16

I believe that Samantha Power will after dying wake up in hell and not not why she is there.

I remember when she was a liberal thinker who held an egalitarian view on life. It was easy to love her back then for her impassioned belief in freedom and equality. These things were true, and the manifestation of who and what she was.

So what happened?

She became infused with evil, and yet never changed the framework of her thinking. This shows the power of the lies, and the cleverness of the father of lies, who is held by some to be the source of evil. No living organism takes rottenness into itself voluntarily, unless it believes it is good. The lies are what make the sickness seem true.

When we look at Samantha Power - and who can stomach to do such a thing anymore? - we are seeing the true opponent. Not her, but in her, radiating out through her, and she possessed.

There is a school of thought that would say she took on the weakness of the world in order to portray it for all of us to see. And that this was an act of generosity, on a plane of existence we normally don't deal in. I don't suggest you believe this, but I wanted to offer the perspective. And also to suggest that there is a way to pity her rather than to hate her.

Personally I think it's one of the saddest things I've ever seen, to behold what she has become. We must all beware. Such a thing can happen to anyone.

Posted by: Grieved | Jul 30 2016 2:10 utc | 17

The fall of Aleppo in the hands of the Syrian army will be a huge humiliation to the US (and to Turkey). Turkey has other humiliations to deal with, with its army crumbling because of one elusive man. Erdogan is looking the other way. Syria is not his hunting ground anymore and he wants a revenge on the USA who couln't hide how sorry they were that the coup fell apart.
The USA is alone and furious at the looming victory of Syria, Russia and the Hezbollah in Aleppo and soon in the whole of Syria. They just can't let that happens and if it does they need to taint that victory with news of massacre, starvation, Hezbollah terrorism and Russian cruelty. Their clear aim is to avoid that Russia and Syria receive the international applause they deserve and the USA the slap it deserve..

To win in Syria, target Hezbollah

What the USA needs is a lesson of humility. Funnily they may get that with a election of either a bellicose and desperate grandma or a flamboyant CEO promising very interesting 4 years to come.

Posted by: virgile | Jul 30 2016 2:19 utc | 18

Clinton to ‘Reset’ Syria War, Focus on Ousting Assad
Aide Vows Clinton Would Escalate Fight Against Both ISIS, Assad
by Jason Ditz, July 29, 2016

Posted by: Les | Jul 30 2016 2:24 utc | 19

Posted by: Les | Jul 29, 2016 10:24:53 PM | 19

It's truly remarkable (in a throw up in my mouth kind of way) that the entire State Apparatus of the USA/UK/Fr is devoted to preserving, enriching and embellishing, the lies about Assad's Syria. It begs a lot of questions about the 'creation' of "Israel" at the end of WWII.

There was an excellent 3-part doco put together about 10 years ago by BBC called The Power of Nightmares (subscript: The Rise of the Politics of Fear). It blew all the infantile crap, on which the Fake War on Terror is based, clean out of the water by exposing the multitude of lies which helped to kick-start it.

In fact it was so persuasive that that a 3-part Neocon riposte was hastily cobbled together to debunk the original. I can't recall the title of the Neocon Riposte - but someone here will.

However, the point is that The Power of Nightmares was very convincing, whereas the follow-up debunking merely helped to CONFIRM TPoN's message. So the Troglodytes were, and still are, capable of making monumental stuff-ups in their devotion to Bullshit.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 30 2016 3:57 utc | 20

Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 29, 2016 11:57:22 PM | 20

Yes, Adam Curtis made that for BBC. He has a whole series of interesting films; Bitter Lake being a must see.

Posted by: V. Arnold | Jul 30 2016 4:54 utc | 21

And this features all of Curtis' films and Bitter Lake is the first listed

Posted by: V. Arnold | Jul 30 2016 5:02 utc | 22

For all the domestic concern trolling that Trump is a fascist, the REAL fascists were strutting their stuff on stage at the DNC to shouts of "USA! USA!"

Posted by: Bill Hicks | Jul 30 2016 5:27 utc | 23

Good point on "exceptional" rg the lg. The Americans have gone so far this year as to design a special Olympics event in Rio so the exceptional, special needs Americans can win a few gold medals. Keep those pesky world champion Russians out of as many events as possible.

Posted by: Macon Richardson | Jul 30 2016 5:56 utc | 25


There is a growing 'NO MEANS NO!' movement to write 'NO' in all the ballot boxes!
Otherwise, quite frankly, we're voting for the perpetual gang-rape of your children.

Bill seems happy that Hill's been broken to opening wide and scratching the nut sack
of The Chosen of Wall Street, who will be running America whether we vote for the
Goldman-HRC-19th-Royal-Cousin or Goldman-DJT-19th-Royal-Cousin.

Re-invest accordingly.

Sick on so many levels:

Posted by: Rotain | Jul 30 2016 6:30 utc | 26


Adam Curtis is a genius, but after documenting the treatment of Australia's aboriginals, he is no longer among The Exceptionals, Those who continue to do business with PM for Life and former Pol Pot leader Hun Sen, in a continuous Comrade gang rape all the way back to 1970s, as the industrial world is building, right now, a Mekong-Dammed, Coal-Fired Hell on Earth, as industrial-training programs prepare SEAsians for the TPP Pivot to Asia energy economy.

"You're going to hear a Giant Sucking Sound going South (East Asia)!"

It's all Divide and Conquer now , both Trump and Clinton are 19th Cousins of the Royals Vampire Squid Blood Line. Red Donald or Blue Hillary, Same Exceptional Soviet, Same Work:Death:Kill Camps

Posted by: Rotain | Jul 30 2016 6:41 utc | 27

Senior Syrian Army Commander Survives Israel’s Assassination Plot

Battlefield sources disclosed that a Syrian army’s senior commander has escaped unharmed an Israeli assassination plot in the Golan Heights.

Majid Heymoud, commander of First Battalion of Golan Regiment who was visiting Eastern al-Samdaniya town narrowly survived the assassination plot.

Heymoud’s convoy came under two missile attacks which were fired from al-Harar and Haraq heights in the occupied Golan Heights under Israel’s control, but he escaped unharmed.

The Al-Nusra Front terrorists also tried to kill Heymoud after failed missile attack, but they did not succeed to do so.

In a relevant development on Monday night, Israeli fighter planes carried out bombing raids on positions in Syria’s Golan Heights.

The Israeli military claimed that the attacks were carried out after a mortar round was fired into the Israeli-occupied side of the Golan Heights from Syria.

The Syrian army said drones were used in the attack that targeted a civilian home in Golan.

According to the Israeli claims, no injuries were reported from the mortar fire which landed in an uninhabited area...

Posted by: ProPeace | Jul 30 2016 7:50 utc | 28

@Cho 14 Incredible, revolting; is there any report on this on the web?

Posted by: ProPeace | Jul 30 2016 7:58 utc | 29

US & Saudi Arabia 'Involved in Turkey's Downing of Russian Su-24' in Syria

German former CDU politician and Vice-President of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe Willy Wimmer told Sputnik Deutschland that he fears NATO involvement in the downing of Russia's Su-24 bomber over Syria last November...

...The downing had been interpreted as a unilateral decision by Turkey, but Willy Wimmer contends that in fact, NATO and Saudi forces were involved in the incident.

"According to my information, Airborne Early Warning and Control System (AWACS) aircraft from the US and Saudi Arabia were involved," Wimmer said.

"Aircraft like that Russian Su-24 bomber are not that easy to just shoot out of the sky. You need to take aim, and you can only do that with AWACS aircraft."

The two AWACS planes involved in the incident took off from a NATO base on Cyprus, and an airbase in Saudi Arabia respectively, Wimmer said. He explained that according to NATO guidelines, if a plane is believed to be violating another country's airspace then contact should made with the appropriate flight control center to draw the pilot's attention to the error.

In peacetime, the most a military aircraft is allowed to do is to force a stray aircraft to make an emergency landing.

"What happened there does not comply with international regulations in any way. They brought the Russian plane down because they wanted to," Wimmer said...

Posted by: ProPeace | Jul 30 2016 8:12 utc | 30

Les@19 These folks are sick. "According to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s foreign policy adviser, she would order a “full reeview” of the Syrian war as her first task upon taking office, with an eye toward a “reset” of the conflict to shift focus toward attacking the Assad government and imposing regime change" All that is probably wishful thinking, but what really is annoying is the Russian insistence on working with our "Partners" to resolve the Syrian problem. Their so called partners are exceptional liars whose aims are diametrically opposed to the Syrian/Russian International law way of doing things, as well as being contrary to the UN charter. Please Russia do not listen to the lying gobshites, just win in Syria.

Posted by: harrylaw | Jul 30 2016 9:49 utc | 31

@14 hl, 'what really is annoying is the Russian insistence on working with our "Partners"'

I think the Russians are correct. The US method is to boycott Cuba for, what 50 years? To sever all relations with countries with which it is conflict, on which it imposes 'sanctions'. The US way is to 'erase' them. If the US doesn't see them, hear them, talk to them ... then they aren't there.

They're Demonized. Anathema. They require a regime change to become visible, audible, addressable again.

Russia is not plagued by the same 'infantile omnipotence', Orlov's phrase, as the USA. Russia doesn't think of itself as a 'superpower', one which has no need of rules, no respect for the law, has not 'a decent respect for the opinions of mankind'. Russia respects all nations and responds to their actions, not their 'essence' - not their essential 'goodness' or 'evilness'. Russia is a rational country, or tries it's level best to be. Not because it's trying to 'look good', or to make the US, for instance, 'look bad', but because they think that rational approach to human relations is the only way to advance human society on earth. As just another nation on earth, Russia too, will advance with all the rest. What's good for the whole is good for the parts.

I suppose it's a remnant of socialism, and the international mindset. Every country Russia deals with is it's partner, potentially a reciprocal partner. Russia believes that behavior can change, and does everything she can to encourage 'good behavior' ... in its own dealings and in others'. Maybe it comes from the horrible losses of WW II. Maybe it comes from the Mongol invasions. Whatever it is, Russia is the grown up to the the US' spoiled brat. To the US' dangerous, brutal, spoiled brat. The entire world will sigh with relief when the US' behavior finally does change ... no matter what it is that brings that change about.

It costs Russia very little to operate in this fashion. It keeps doors open. It enables the resumption of cordial relations at any time. Look at the marked improvement in relations with Turkey, once the Turks got their latest taste of US treachery and wished to resume relations with Russia.

I, for one, have nothing but admiration for Russia's resolve to act in a predictable, measured, steadfast manner with all the states she deals with. When the US does go down, Russia will be there, ready to help.

Posted by: jfl | Jul 30 2016 11:51 utc | 32

It does look, doesn't it, as though eastern Aleppo is going to fall. Personally, I'd attribute the sudden weakness to the post-coup confusion in Turkey. Erdogan is pre-occupied with the purge. Hasn't got the time to organise all the supplies for the rebels. The rebels don't merely rely on Turkey looking the other way, but rather on positive support from Erdogan. The same applies to ex-Nusra as to ISIS, as to the FSA. The US, also, must also be having difficulty executing CIA activities from Turkey for much the same reason. Internal confusion in Turkey makes it difficult to act.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jul 30 2016 12:29 utc | 33


The Last Christians in Aleppo

Posted by: Les | Jul 30 2016 12:51 utc | 34

Israel has petitioned the US to allow it to formally annex the Syrian Golan Heights

They've performed exploratory drilling in the area, and found there to be a potential reserve of 800 million barrels of oil. To my recollection, the Israeli courts denied the US and Israeli companies' intention to start extraction activities there.

Posted by: Les | Jul 30 2016 12:55 utc | 35

As long as I'm doing my data dump, I'll put this out there.

Exxon would be the main beneficiary if Syria cooperates with plans to build a gas pipleine from Qatar to Turkey. The timeline is the State Department commences planning for destabilization program in Syria in 2006, Qatar signs a 2009 deal with Exxon for natural gas production, Assad rejects the proposed pipeline that same year, and the Washington Post reports in 2011 that the US has been training and funding opposition groups in Syria for some time.

Posted by: Les | Jul 30 2016 13:05 utc | 36

Turkey is discreetly getting out if the syrian quagmire. Since Davutoglu was moved out (and has been silenced) erdogan has lost hopes that he can tame Syria into a turkish satellite. He now knows that the usa and Saudi Arabia are more enemies than friends. He also learnt that Iran and Russia can be his best allies both politically and economically. He also now that syria is a thorn in the side of establishing better relation with the allies.
It is therefore expected thar Erdogan will dump the syrian rebels by exposing their 'evilness' as a valid reason. Thus expect an intense vilification of the groups that Turkey supported for years. In exchange Turkey is expecting Russia (and Bashar al Assad) to stop the kurds expansion that the Americans are favoring.
The irony is that Hillary is still stuck in an obsolete vision about Syria. He really need glasses...

Posted by: Virgile | Jul 30 2016 13:08 utc | 37

The Turkish Air Force has its own AWACS aircraft.

Posted by: lysias | Jul 30 2016 13:57 utc | 38

Re: Hoarsewhispher @ 20 and the BBC 3-part doc "The Power of Nightmares."

It's on YouTube , each part about an hour --

Part One --

Part Two --

Part Three --

It was broadcast in 2004, so it's missing some of the current nightmarish tactics of the West, but still interesting. Does require time to watch.

Posted by: jawbone | Jul 30 2016 14:45 utc | 39

Posted by: jawbone | Jul 30, 2016 10:45:19 AM | 39

Thanks for posting the links. It's a Must Watch, imo. I've got most docos broadcast on Oz TV since circa 1980 on tape, including TPoN and the riposte. Wiki's entry on TPoN says it was broadcast in Oz in early 2005 which helped me to find that tape. My cataloging is fairly brief and cryptic so, having found TPoN, I'll have to review a few later tapes starting with one which contains a likely suspect called The New Al Qaeda which, unlike TPoN, I've been unable to find a reference to on the www (which may or may not be meaningful).

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 30 2016 15:42 utc | 40

T/U to all for the very interesting links and comments. Altho so many are so very depressing....

Posted by: jawbone | Jul 30 2016 15:52 utc | 41

If you read Political Ponerology from Andrew M. Lobaczewski you will know what happend to her.

Posted by: Mattose | Jul 30 2016 18:00 utc | 42

Sorry I forgot to adress my post, it was for no. 17 Grieved

Posted by: Mattose | Jul 30 2016 18:01 utc | 43

Further to my #40..

The New al Qaeda is the Neocon Riposte to The Power of Nightmares. It was screened on SBS under the doco banner 'Cutting Edge', the week after the conclusion of Power of Nightmares. It was produced by BBC's Peter Taylor. It's pretty tedious and trashy but seen in the context of TPoN, unintentionally enlightening. Like the doco which inspired it, it's 3 x 1hr.
Here's a link to a relevant BBC page..

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 30 2016 18:33 utc | 44

Grieved @ 17. I believe that Samantha Power will after dying wake up in hell and not not why she is there.

Ppl like Samantha Power become prisoners of their own device.

Given stellar pay, adulation, important positions, they come to consider themselves as special, highly intelligent, well educated, on top of it all and that kind of sh*t.

They no longer really understand who is paying them and for what (and so often do a very clumsy job as they don’t read the pol situation properly) but they can’t quit or run off. (.. like a movie stars, actors, in some ways …)

Their life as they experience it or need it to be would disintegrate (services, cars, housing, free trips in first class, private school for kids, chauffeur, service personnel at will, inside deals with mega dollaris yup yup, wild connections, foreign properties, status in their group and at meets, and on and on…) if they made even the faintest squeaky mousy noise against their masters.

As their career path is set, and more importantly, they evolve in, and communicate every day, with ppl who encourage them they are ethically right, pursuing the moral path and need to be front stage (somebody has to do that) and all guarantees are in place, they will be *protected.* Clink the champagne glasses, clap, etc.

Ppl like S. Power, are just useful idiots who are manipulated, or straight-out crooks. The PTB of course cares not about these two categories, but believe me the crooks are thin on the ground - they smell the danger - and the useful idiots are grin-grin, love ya, accepted.

Posted by: Noirette | Jul 30 2016 18:53 utc | 45

I know that to many of you the Saker is anathema. Still, every now and then he does make sense. Here is one of his most recent musings. I pass it on because as crazy as it may seem, it does make a bit of sense.

So now, hate me as you (for some reason) hate him. Sometimes the truth comes from unusual and unexpected places.

Posted by: rg the lg | Jul 30 2016 19:08 utc | 46

I know that to many of you the Saker is anathema. Still, every now and then he does make sense. Here is one of his most recent musings. I pass it on because as crazy as it may seem, it does make a bit of sense.

So now, hate me as you (for some reason) hate him. Sometimes the truth comes from unusual and unexpected places.

Posted by: rg the lg | Jul 30 2016 19:09 utc | 47

Some interesting comments too

Posted by: Mina | Jul 30 2016 19:38 utc | 48

My first thought on the Manbij campaign were "great they will cut off the main supply route to Raqqa".

My second thought, as it progressed, was "why are they surrounding it? Art of War: they then have to fight to the death, and you will lose a lot of your own men.

My third thought was "oh right, they aren't american men that will be dying in droves, they will be Kurds / Arabs . That explains it."

They aren't killing American civilians, and they have been spinning this since the term "collateral damage" was coined and became acceptable to the MSM zombied masses.

Posted by: Dean | Jul 30 2016 19:58 utc | 49

@ Grieved 17

I remember when she was a liberal thinker who held an egalitarian view on life. It was easy to love her back then for her impassioned belief in freedom and equality. These things were true, and the manifestation of who and what she was.

was that before she married Cass Sunstein?

He has been dubbed "America’s Goebbels"’s-joseph-goebbles-serve-nsa-oversight-panel

Posted by: likklemore | Jul 30 2016 20:14 utc | 50

ALberto@4 - "...An acquaintance of mine who resides near a major US Air Force base tells me several USAF doomsday aircraft are inflight..."

We only have four E-4B NightWatch 'doomsday' 747's, ALberto. I don't think they're anywhere near each other this weekend.

Red Flag 16-3 ended on Frida, so there would have been a lot of aircraft leaving Nellis AFB, Nevada including several Tinker AFB E-3 AWACS with the big Frisbee on top (which are not E-4Bs). The U.S. B-52s are rotating out of Guam for B-1Bs from Ellsworth, Alaska in the next week or so.

Les@35 - "...Israel has petitioned the US to allow it to formally annex the Syrian Golan Heights..." I think you're mixing up a few details here, Les. Israel wouldn't petition the U.S. - the U.S. has no say in the matter.

On April 17th of this year, Nettanyahu declared that Syria's Golan Heights (occupied since 1967) will be part of Israel forever. Unfortunately, the rest of the world has never recognized Israel's claim. In 1981, the U.N. formally declared Israel's claim null and void. Nothing has changed, despite various arguments, pleas and/or threats by Israel to anybody (including the U.S.). The Golan may have some oil, but it is also a critical path for the Mosel to Haifa pipeline - Nettanyahu is terrified of losing it.

UN rejects Israel's claim over Syria's Golan Heights

Posted by: PavewayIV | Jul 30 2016 20:20 utc | 51

@45 Noirette

I never followed the personalities too closely but I remember seeing a story about Powers getting beat-up by a bunch of neo-cons which led to her tearful epiphany that they were right, and that there and then she got onboard, straightened up, and his since - literally - flown right. Apparently prior to that she had been interested in humanity and not geopolitics. Sounded whacko to me, not that it happened, but that that was the way the inner circles worked. That one could be transformed by the pack threatening expulsion from its inner circle. Ever see anything on that? Of course it was in the mainstream corporate media, so it might have all been a lie/post-hypnotic suggestion anyway.

I just googled 'samantha powers in tears' and came up with several versions of the story. Mondoweiss has her 'offering to fellate a donkey for Israel'.

Posted by: jfl | Jul 30 2016 20:28 utc | 52

@52 that's true - you don't know what these neocons do to these officials behind closed doors. That's why I think all stops will be pulled out to ensure a victory for Hillary, as she is totally in their camp

Posted by: bbbb | Jul 30 2016 20:58 utc | 53

@51 "The Golan may have some oil, but it is also a critical path for the Mosel to Haifa pipeline..."

Right. But first they have to smash Syria into manageable pieces and that project doesn't seem to be going so well.

Posted by: dh | Jul 30 2016 21:08 utc | 54

@51 pw

Ah, here you are. If you're not too busy could you have a look over here? Wondered what your thoughts might be? Looks like a lethal split of attention to me.

Posted by: jfl | Jul 30 2016 21:18 utc | 55

@53 bbbb
I am not sure she went to them. It would appear they are a parasite of some description...leaving their empty, drained victim in favour of a slightly more favourable host. Obomba The Drone Master certainly kept the 'defence' market healthy (and the guvna can't create jobs Barry...? Really??) so can understand the neo-con flight. I found a lot of pleasure in their disgust of the new Republican path.

At least in a nuclear winter the climate change debate is over.

Posted by: Ma | Jul 30 2016 21:48 utc | 56

@53, b4 'That's why I think all stops will be pulled out to ensure a victory for Hillary'

All this talk about the 'inevitable'. Why not drop your pen and just suicide right now? The chorus of the determinists might be the only thing that can drown out the corporate media ... and it's in support of the same narrative.

Posted by: jfl | Jul 30 2016 23:01 utc | 57

@57 Do you have any specific suggestions for people to do? Other than move to Thailand.

Posted by: dh | Jul 30 2016 23:45 utc | 58

dh | Jul 30, 2016 7:45:14 PM | 58

Oh please, no, no; not more Usians here. Too many already, IMO.

Posted by: V. Arnold | Jul 31 2016 0:32 utc | 59

@59 And Brits. I was just down the Bunk Up Bar in Udon Thani wiv me mates. We were talking about Boris Johnson. 'Es a card alright. Some Yank who posts on MOA thinks Boris wants to restore the British Empire!!! We all had a good laugh about that.

Posted by: dh | Jul 31 2016 0:37 utc | 60

U.S. citizens are getting their Kharmic harvest. They are completely responsible for their situation by the very fact of being ignorant; and thus being uninformed, have got what they deserve.
Ignorance is deadly...

Posted by: V. Arnold | Jul 31 2016 0:38 utc | 61

@42 Mattose. Thank you. I didn't know (but should have guessed) that this is a syndrome that has been studied. I will have to read the book. Among the 5-star reviews on Amazon, one points out that 4-6% of the human population is born without a conscience.

Another says:

Lobaczewski's great contribution is in showing the process by which people with psychopathic personality disorders congregate and slowly take over organizations, political parties, businesses to finally stifle the whole of society.

It goes to great length in explaining the phenomenon of psychopathy on a macro scale. It deals in a non-judgmental way with the subject of evil. The author clearly lays out the various types of psychopathy and what happens when they combine their various talents and manage to take over a society from the inside and start to rule over normal people in the form of a pathocracy.

The process results in a pathocracy. Of course. Of course, sociopathic people aren't just going to sit still all their lives. They're going to move into areas of conduct left vacant by moral people, and do this perhaps even with a sense of mystification, wondering why the rest of the population doesn't seize these opportunities, and pluck this low-hanging fruit.


As a Buddhist, I perceive very clearly that the things we tend to call "hard-wired" in our own or in general human nature are in fact not so. In Buddhist understanding of the nature of reality, nothing is hard-wired. So, in my own circles of local politics and small-town corruption, for example, I often speak in terms of "functional stupidity" and "functional evil". We can watch an institution over time as it becomes increasingly corrupted, and so it can also become more functionally stupid. It's not really stupid, but rather its staff are afraid to shine brightly, for fear of repression.

Everyone can be redeemed, although Buddhists would point to a scale involving many lifetimes. But no one is hard-wired evil, or actually anything. Even the 4-6% born "without" a conscience are not "hard-wired" this way.

Everything can change. Everything is susceptible to influence, to persuasion, and to the demonstration effect. This is the best news in the universe. Everyone can fall, all the way to hell. But everyone can rise up also. This is why it's good that the Russians continue to speak of their "partners", and to insist on the rule of law. It's a very potent force working in the world.

Posted by: Grieved | Jul 31 2016 0:39 utc | 62

US Refuses To Recognize Israel’s Annexation Of Syria’s Golan Heights

Reacting to Monday’s comments by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the White House said they weren’t sure if Netanyahu was even serious but that the US had no intention of changing its position on the occupation.

White House officials also warned that the move “complicates” the their involvement in the Syrian War, putting the US-backed rebels in an “awkward position” and opening them up to charges they are part of a plot to abandon the recovery of Golan by Syria.

By Jason Ditz | | November 14, 2015

Posted by: Les | Jul 31 2016 0:39 utc | 63

dh | Jul 30, 2016 8:37:13 PM | 60

Yep, and Aussies as well. :-)
I'm down here in Lalee (Ratchiburi [Province, not city]).
No farang in my village but me.

Posted by: V. Arnold | Jul 31 2016 1:07 utc | 64

Oops; should be Ratchaburi...

Posted by: V. Arnold | Jul 31 2016 1:35 utc | 65

Very difficult for a person of average intelligence to do a number of things to begin to comprehend some truths. Cognitive Dissonance. Most ppl feel that they can and must trust that which they see on TV. They pick the network that fits their red or blue tribal affiliation.

Posted by: fast freddy | Jul 31 2016 1:35 utc | 66

Lots of good info on the Balkans arms trade with CIA, Saudi, Turkey for Syria.

Posted by: Hat | Jul 31 2016 2:43 utc | 67

The silliest aspect of the Syria-Russia 'safe-passage from Aleppo' gambit is FrUKUS' reaction to it ... trying to make an obviously brilliant idea sound like a bad one - for no better reason than that it was dreamt up by Syria-Russia.

One thing this unified expression of chagrin/sour grapes does is add weight to the probability that US & Friends shot themselves in the collective foot by supporting the failed coup in Turkey and are now reaping the whirlwind of betrayal.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 31 2016 3:47 utc | 68

Well, here's a post I find very reassuring. Somebody has their head screwed on right. Plus it explains why AmeriKKKa wants another Obama, GWBush, Clinton, Bush I, Reagan, Carter, Nixon, et al.

We want the blood of others because they will not bow. And no BS about the floundling fatheads (erm, Founding Fathers) we didn't beat the Brits in any thing resembling a revolution ... they (the Brits) just decided we weren't worth a shit. And we aren't.

Now, go stuff your pipe and smoke it for more wars, more greed, more bombast ... the American Way.

Posted by: rg the lg | Jul 31 2016 3:54 utc | 69

@60 dh

I thought you might be a Brit, although you hadn't spoken like one 'til now :). Not one I could recognize at any rate. I don't think the British plutes are trying to resuscitate/recreate an empire, I just think they feel severely hampered in their global, financial ambitions (like the US they're down to that, or think they are), being too entangled in the embrace of the US, and of Germany - and they seem to be right on there - so they are attempting now to 'fix' that by means of a little 'creative destruction'. And of course the benefits will all trickle down to those 'below', somehow ... as they always do(n't). Don't know how it's going to work out for them. They don't seem to be in especially good position now. But the plutes never have anything life-threatening on the line, they can afford to lose vast quantities and still be millionaires. Not so ordinary Brits, of course, but its not the plutes' fault if the 'masses' haven't anticipated and planned for globalization, and for their creative destruction. Or so they tell themselves, if they bother to tell themselves anything at all.

I may well be way off. But that's what it smells like to me.

You're certainly right about my having very little leverage on what happens in the USA from here. I just hate to see my country the author of so much death, devastation, destruction and unhappiness in the world and try to imagine some way to change that. I left the US a working stiff, too involved with my day-to-day survival to think much about exerting myself in an effort to stop the madness. When I got here the invasion of Iraq popped up as a real possibility and then as a reality, to my great frustration and chagrin. I've been off since then, I guess. Never having lived outside the US before I acquired a new perspective when we moved here. Occasionally ... every year when I renew my visa ... I wonder about returning to the USA. I have no one left there now, I'm sure I would feel more like an immigrant myself than a citizen. I feel sure that life is more comfortable for me here than it would be there. I'm not quite as old as พีวี. but I'll be 69 next month, and the USA would not welcome me with open arms. I'd have to find something to do to supplement my income in order to survive, and that 'might' be a lot harder to do now than it used to be, so I will probably die here in Thailand.

Perhaps I should just forget about the USA, but I feel like an American. I remember my childhood, my family members, growing up, living all over my country. We all gotta be from somewhere and that's where I'm from. It may be unlikely that the US will straighten up and fly right - seems very unlikely right now - but it's not impossible. I have my opinions on how it ought to be, and I try to share them. I don't want to think - after me the deluge - and just shrug it off.

Posted by: jfl | Jul 31 2016 4:40 utc | 70

Paveway51 @51

"We only have four E-4B NightWatch 'doomsday' 747's, ALberto. I don't think they're anywhere near each other this weekend."

You are correct. I checked with my source. Three 777 type aircraft colored white with structure under the fuselage between the wings is what was observed. As the aircraft were taking off at a steep angle no marking could be observed. They were not Doomsday aircraft. Nor were they AWACS. ?

Posted by: ALberto | Jul 31 2016 4:50 utc | 71

Hat, an amazing website. Thanks.

Posted by: okie farmer | Jul 31 2016 7:14 utc | 72

re 48 Mina

Actually I didn't think Joshua Landis' discussion was up to much. It was all rather obvious - deal a blow, but not fatal, to the revolt, yada, yada. Personally, I don't know what's going to happen, but at this moment there are definite signs of the rebels giving way in Aleppo, and panicking. Naturally things could settle down again to a retrenched resistance. Or they could give way entirely. It's definitely on the cards. That's why the rebels are preventing civilians from leaving.

The obvious reason for the panic is that support from Turkey has been cut off or severely reduced because of the coup. Nobody's got time to take an interest in the Syrians. Even if Erdogan were planning to continue support for various rebel groups, and not tone it down, as some here think.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jul 31 2016 8:19 utc | 73

From the posted link ( Jen | Jul 29, 2016 5:36:22 PM | 7)

The news agency said the motorcade was traveling at speeds of more than 60mph, while villagers lined up along the sides of the road. But when the boy darted on to the two-lane highway, there was no time for the sixth car in Ms Power’s convoy to react. The driver was Cameroonian.

I would give Samantha pass on that one. In many countries, especially the less developed, like Poland and Cameroon, it is unthinkable to operate "official vehicles" at the speed of less than 100 km/h, even though the practice leads to fatalities that even include the said officials. This is not a safe practice, and neither is letting children to "dart onto the highway".

Samantha would be a reactionary concern troll even if she insisted on driving 40 km/h within settlements etc. Perhaps she was still innocent of that as a babe in Ireland, but her entire carrier is build upon hypocrisy. Sadly, this is necessary (I mean, if you want a carrier in USA). I simple checked what topics were discussed in her "famous" book, ""A Problem From Hell: America and the Age of Genocide". Because I did not want to touch it before making sure that it would not lead to nausea, diarrhea etc. I did not by web search alone. And yes, Indonesian genocides are not among the topics, especially the major one in 1965. One could "defend" Samantha on that in two ways. First, while it was a mass slaughter, the victims were selected chiefly for political reasons, rather than ethnic. (As long as Nazis were limiting themselves to Communists and mentally ill, they were outside the scope of her concern, I presume.) Second, the main thrust of her book (again, according to web search) is how to avoid USA "not getting involved", and in 1965 Indonesia, CIA was very much involved. It was a major worry that Indonesian military could be sloppy and give a pass to some people of CIA lists.

Of course, Samantha is free to choose topics in any way she likes. But the whole perspective is of course screwed up, namely that of "humanitarian intervention". In fact, it is so thoroughly screwed up that it is hard even to start explaining why. Of course, by the the wide public has ample reasons to be skeptical, and it is skeptical, so the concept looses its utility as a marketing tool. The rest time someone gets the concept of putting lipstick on a pig, it takes the public over by the storm, but in time, as the quality of pigs and the lipstick deteriorates, and so does the public response.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jul 31 2016 8:52 utc | 74

Sorry for the typo: the first time someone gets the concept ...

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jul 31 2016 8:53 utc | 75

Laguerre, i was referring to the comment section under the post. Insiders say it is end game for the so called rebels. Listening to the French gov radios and of course to rmc-mo these last days was sickening. Biased presentation as if the people in east aleppo had made a choice of supporting the rebels from day one. Nothing on the thousands who live or squat anywhere possible (the University and the baron hotel have been reported to be accommodating ppl without any discrimination). Nothing on the families of the rebels which were sent to safety lon ago in Lattakie and elsewhere and are supported without discrimination by the locals. Syrian people have shown they host the best and the worse among themselves. This will help them to reconstruct i hope.

Posted by: Mina | Jul 31 2016 9:11 utc | 76

I'm sure I wasn't the only person at the start of last week who noticed the dissonance between Sergey Lavrov and John Kerry shaking hands and backslapping like long lost good old boys re-united, and the ClintonInc claim that 'Putin' had hacked the DNC email server.
Initial reports outta djkarta or wherever the fuck Kerry and Lavrov were meeting up, suggested some serious horse trading had been lined up to allow Syria regain control of Aleppo and then co-operate on a joint action against ISIS.
Suddenly it was all off. It may seem as though ClintonInc leaned on Oblammer & Kerry to back off so as to give credence to her claim that Russia was pulling trumps strings and maybe that was how she sold it to those two.
I reckon ClintonInc blamed Russia over the hack because Clinton wants to crank up a decent sized war if she wins. Syria being pretty much sorted by next January doesn't work for her.
She wants something big and reasonably free of the sort of baggage that could bring it undone from the right as well as the left. Libya doesn't fit (something about Bengazi) and bombing the Yemen doesn't work since there is already a paucity of targets that would look good being blown to smithereens on the 6 o'clock news, plus being seen to be aiding Saudi quite so blatantly is just not a good look.
But Syria has genuine possibilities for ClintonInc.
She can appeal to innate amerikan racism without ever acknowledging that is her game, and even better a semi-proxy war against Russia harkens back to the good old days, but when questioned on that, the safe word "Isis" can be muttered and all gets forgiven.

This is really nasty because one of the worst upshots of Clinton's gaming has been the refusal of the UN to support the corridors for citizens to get the fuck outta dodge. No UN support means that the al Nusra mob will shell and snipe civilians trying to escape then blame the Syrian army.
The UN stance was another that seemed to alter overnight, from a request to monitor the corridors to a demand that supplies be allowed in to the al Nusra controlled area of Aleppo.
Setting aside the unreasonableness of asking an army who have just fought and suffered casualties for months to build a siege, then deciding to break it, consider for a moment how inhumane the UN position is.
Even if the supplies were only food for civilians, the effect of them would be to encourage civilians to stay in a war zone that is about to become white hot.
I had been thinking about the US refusal to allow any males to escape the siege of Fallujah (06 IIRC maybe later there were two and no one was allowed out before the awful shake 'n bake episode) rather than their latest war crime in Ramadi, though both really reveal the hypocrisy riven through amerika's every action.
The Syrian government have announced that anyone who is unarmed, any age any gender just unarmed, may leave Aleppo without problem. In fact they announced an amnesty on anyone who had been fighting against them, as long as they disarmed themselves.
This is a genuine attempt at reconciliation and ClintonInc are desperate to stymy it however they can.
You cannot get much lower than sacrificing the lives of thousands of women, men and children just to make political hay, but that is the scum which seeks power in amerika.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Jul 31 2016 11:44 utc | 77

Debsisdead | Jul 31, 2016 7:44:26 AM | 77

I cannot second your post too strongly.
My greatest fear is a Clinton presidency; it will head directly to a confrontation with Russia and very likely the opening gambit of a nuclear conflagration.
If she actually tries to implement a no fly zone in Syria; then missiles will fly and real war begins.
Clinton is a power hungry harpy, of the worst iteration, who has absolutely no clue just who President Vladimir Putin is (underestimating him greatly) and further; not a clue regarding Russian culture (who do not back down) which is the most dangerous ignorance on the planet.

Posted by: V. Arnold | Jul 31 2016 12:26 utc | 78
Facing defeat, US threatens to balkanize Syria

The acerbic remarks calling into question Syria’s future as a sovereign country by the CIA chief John Brennan at the Aspen Security Forum meet in Colorado on Saturday betray a very high level of US frustration over emergent ground realities. (Reuters) The Syrian government forces, supported by Russian forces and Iranian and Hezbollah fighters have encircled the strategic northern city of Aleppo. The extremist groups supported by the US and its allies are trapped in the city.

Meanwhile, Russia has announced the opening of ‘humanitarian corridors’ to facilitate civilians to leave the city and for terrorists to surrender. The Russian announcement makes the US looks very foolish regionally for having been outwitted comprehensively.

Posted by: okie farmer | Jul 31 2016 14:40 utc | 79

My take on it (also posted by me at landis):
From a pro Russian pov., the following things come to mind:

1: I would regard the coup in Turkey as the actual strategic sea change.
The encirclement and capture of Aleppo is simply the first strategic result of it.

2: The Russian pov. was that the Turkish deep state was supporting certain groups of Rebels in Syria, while Erdogans government supported other groups. The groups supported by the Turkish deep state (typically somewhat more ethnically defined and a bit less Islamist, and more fascist/turkish nationalist) are now up in a creek without a paddle. Given Erdogans current internal distractions, the more Islamist groups supported by him will have to deal with an at least temporary reduction of Turkish supply.
Support for former Turkish deep state supported groups will effectively resume once these groups find a new sponsor, this may take a while, but could also happen pretty quickly. Islamist groups formerly supported by Erdogan will find their support increasing the more Erdogan centralizes power. A total sellout of these groups by Erdogan is not likely, as it would imply weakness and Erdogan has no interest being seen as weak at this point.
I would predict an intense Russia/SAA assault on groups formerly supported by the Turkish deep state. It is a rare opportunity to effectively kill Turkish assets with Turkish consent, and Russia is unlikely to miss this opportunity. If opportune, Russia could be capable of casting groups it wanted to get rid off anyway as having had the support of the Turkish deep state as well.

3: Such operations would feature major Maskirovka, and also strive hard to encourage defections. Russia likes defectors, and generally has the resources to treat them decently. The thing is, individual groups would not have the luxury of defecting to Russia, they would be defecting to Assad and that is a very different story.

4: A narrative of Aleppos fall would be of great use in encouraging defections. I would btw. predict “Rebel leaks”. SAA and allies should capture sufficient amount of IT equipment etc. to use this for a major propaganda effort.

5: One cannot stress how vital the actual information war, as in war about actual information, as opposed to propaganda warfare, is. If SAA+allies can, following the fall of Aleppo, create a narrative of “yield, with terms, or we send the forces that took Aleppo at you”, they can reap major benefits in second order defections. Due to the fact that Russias air force is indeed highly mobile and highly powerful, it would not take much to make such narratives credible. The important issue for Russia is to use her air force in conjunction with approaches in the informational, subversive and public sphere while maintaining a sufficient degree of cohesion throughout the loyalist alliance.

6: A point of considerable contention will be the Loyalist-Kurdish truce.
Russia, due to not having any Kurdish minorities within its borders, and due to a pretty long history of supporting Kurdish interests, is quite noticably pro Kurdish. Towards their Iranian and Syrian (Iran has not forgotten the Mahabad republic) allies, they could justify their support of the Kurds by stating that Kurdish aspirations are far more damaging and dangerous to Turkey then they are to either Syria or Iran. With Turkey being much less of a threat the Kurds could, in the eyes of certain Syrian and Iranian actors, have “outlived their usefulness”.

7: The distinction of “useful vs. not useful” Syria is however quite interesting, and would work against an impending Loyalist attack on Rojava for a number of reasons. First, it would still be very hard for loyalists to hold positions close to the Turkish border. If one adds the not exactly rich economy of the Kurdish areas, leaving these areas to the Kurds as a buffer against Turkey does make sense. Especially since, in my opinion (no access to the sea, indefensible border, infrastructure is not in the least optimized for that configuration), the Syrian Kurdish areas do not constitute a viable statelet in the long term.
From the Assad pov. attacking Rojava gets them a lot of “not useful” land, risks alienating both Russia and the (sane)USA and does not present much of a strategic gain.
Finishing up, after Aleppo, rebel holdouts in Damascus, and reinforcing control on the Jordanian border, are things which would appear to be far more achievable and have a bigger payoff (like economical improvements in Damascus etc.) for sucess.

Posted by: Mightypeon | Jul 31 2016 14:43 utc | 80

Re: Mightypeon @80

"Sea change"? Sea changes all the time, but the net effect is unclear.

So far, it was reported that "Turkish advisors" were "less attentive" to the needs of jihadists than the recent norm. Given that war material takes some time to be delivered to the "front line", except Latakia front, the loyalist success in closing the east Aleppo cannot be attributed to that. It is more than the loyalist cyclically are successful, overstretched or having a lull to rest, restock etc. And in successful periods they had achievements of at least comparable scale: pushing the rebels long distance away from Latakia airports, advance in north-east Aleppo against ISIS, advance in south Aleppo, Qaryatain and Palmyra, significant reduction of rebel pockets in Damascus area, and most dramatically, connecting Aleppo positions to the "Shia enclave" that borders Afrin canton of YPG.

A huge change would occur if Erdogan drops the policy of supplying the rebels. This would be a big change of his attitude, but he is the most mercurial actor in the Middle East. Engaging domestic Kurds in a peace process, full war on Kurds, generously supplying ISIS and shelling ISIS, "zero problem foreign policy" and very intense propping of insurgency (including or excluding ISIS), being vocal against "Israeli oppression" and hospitable to Hamas and recent reconciliation with Israel, and this is a non-exhaustive list. The only constant in his behavior that this week he wants to have more power than last week.

Right now, a series of big purges can consolidate that power further, but there is a real or perceived resistance in the West, so he will play the "eastern card". Moreover, he does not need more Syrian refugees and Russia showed some power cards of their own, like a manned somehow finding its way to PKK: what if PKK got a lot of them and a lot of anti-tank small missiles? So far, rebels got at most several manpads, but Russia could up the ante and deliver TOWs to YPG in Afrin that may pass some to PKK.

Observe that "Kurdish card" was played already, but it is actually a deck and there are many players. I do not think that Rojava will become a de-facto independent state after the end of the civil war, but it is not impossible.

The biggest unknown is the durability of "war forever" faction. Recently, Turkey and Gulfies were "eliminate Assad, create Sharia Sunni state in Syria", West and Israel, "war forever", Russia and Iran, "restore status quo ante". "War forever" reached the stage that was forecasted: blowback in Europe, and that may sour European NATO members from the idea. But will they oppose it actively? As long as USA is enthusiastic, I doubt it, but that does not have to last.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jul 31 2016 15:45 utc | 81

@81 piotr.. nice summation.. thanks..

Posted by: james | Jul 31 2016 16:12 utc | 82

Trump: Crimean Citizens Want to Be With Russia, Not With Ukraine

Neocon hysteria in 3 2..

Posted by: Lavel | Jul 31 2016 16:40 utc | 83

Idk about specific pressure on S. Power. Certainly that type of coercion is quite common. (in response for ex jfl. 52)

I have known 7 ppl, from Switz so thus with some credentials, education, etc. aka ‘good candidates,’ hmm? who have tried to join the humanitarian / care for refugees displaced raped women war victims etc. / to become top compassionate figures..

Only a few are chosen.

The ‘failed’ ones gave up in disgust, they said, when they saw what was going on (?? that sounds good..), others were just cheesed off by being disregarded, not listened to / not earning enough money - prestige - recognition. The anointed, imho, are the ones who ‘bend’ to strong-arming (in one direction or another..) or even organise it themselves.

The entry barrier is very tightly gated, as only a few are needed. Triage is vicious. The procedures to get rid of someone are accepted, by all, no question there *ever*, it’s immediate. —> Like 24 hours to quit. “Get another life.” Ok boss.

Anecdotal, sure.. But how the “humanit” system works is little known, deserves more investigation etc. To put it mildly.

Btw, Jo Cox (Labour pol killed berfore Brexit vote) and her husband were very deep-deep into charities of various kinds. She was (imho) an example of someone who succeeded at this game of humanitarian-cum-politics mix. Until she was killed. Which has thrown that community into an absolute PANIC.

Posted by: Noirette | Jul 31 2016 17:58 utc | 84

This is a bit interesting. Some 20 "patriots" took over a police station in the capital of Armenia, taking hostages. They got under siege, and supporters were demonstrating, 160 got arrested. Today the "patriots" surrendered. And The Guardian reprinted very unaided commentary by an unabashed sympathizers of the "patriots", first published in Moscow Times.

The latter publication serves a devilishly clever Putin's purpose: to show normal Russians how thoroughly rotten domestic liberals are. Apparently, it is OK in Russia to publish and be very vocal opponent of the "regime", if you are sufficiently stupid. It was discussed in Anglo-American press how popular is Putin in various circles and how many there are wanna-be Putins. But imitators rarely approach the quality of the genuine article. Perhaps Orban, "Victator" of Hungary?

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Jul 31 2016 20:38 utc | 85

Three aircraft reported as Doomsday aircraft were most likely Boeing oc-135s.

Posted by: ALberto | Jul 31 2016 20:57 utc | 86

ALbero@36- that's interesting, one of these o-135s 'emergency' landed in Siberia recently

Posted by: hejiminy cricket | Jul 31 2016 21:28 utc | 87

ALberto@86 - We only have two OC-135B Open Skies in the AF inventory. These are four-engine 707-based airframes. One of those is in Siberia on an Open Skies mission (had an emergency landing). The other 707 airframe aircraft (that are not our 400 or so KC-135R/T Stratotankers) are the two WC-135 Constant Phoenix aircraft - radionuclide sniffers. Maybe the missing Fukushima cores are going critical again.

Michael Van Broekhoven has been looking for the source of refractory radionuclides that have been swirling around the Northern Hemisphere since the beginning of this year. He's given up on his blog now, but it must be serious. The European and U.S. government monitoring networks turn off their monitors when the readings get too high, but he was still able to document some pretty serious measurements. Either Fukushima is going hot, or some other reactor somewhere has melted down and is being kept from the public (or is unknown to the U.S. and European governments).

Posted by: PavewayIV | Jul 31 2016 22:48 utc | 88

@ PavewayIV

There are 3 nukes out of containment at Fukushima and the US government is hiding what could become our extinction event.

One would think that humanity would rise to the challenge of our nuclear effluent hubris if given the opportunity but we may never have the chance. We have already committed to a thousand generations being responsible for our nuclear effluent, if we last that long.

I visit as my source but there are other Fukushima specific sites as well.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Aug 1 2016 1:06 utc | 89

ALberto@86 - If these were four-engine transports 'with structure under the fuselage between the wings', then they may have been C-17 Globemaster II's. The wheel wells (called sponsons) are huge and stick out rather prominently from the fuselage as seen here and here. C-17s have six wheels on each side they need to hide somewhere.

The last link was a tweet of Dunford arriving at Incirlik this morning after a two-day stay in Baghdad. He would have left Friday morning in a C-17. That's his usual ride overseas. He doesn't have a special pimped-out one just for himself, but he does have a nice air-conditioned trailer for an office loaded on board when he goes on trips. I don't think any USAF C-17s are (or ever were) white. They're all painted a dull light grey.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Aug 1 2016 1:54 utc | 90

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