Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
August 09, 2016

Who Now Leads The War On Syria - The CIA Or Turkey?

Some reports about the recent al-Qaeda attack on Aleppo suggest a leading role Turkey is playing in this operation. This contradicts my analysis of a Turkish foreign policy change moving from a solely western orientation towards a more eastern one. Such a change implies a less intense Turkish engagement in Syria.

Earlier reports by the Economist and the Financial Times pointed to less active role of Turkey in Syria. But a new Financial Times piece (Textcopy) emphasizes the role of Turkey in supplying and training various oppositions groups, especially al-Qaeda, while minimizing U.S. involvement:

[T]he offensive against President Bashar al-Assad’s troops may have had more foreign help than it appears: activists and rebels say opposition forces were replenished with new weapons, cash and other supplies before and during the fighting.

“At the border yesterday we counted tens of trucks bringing in weapons,” said one Syrian activist, who crosses between Syria and neighbouring Turkey. “It’s been happening daily, for weeks … weapons, artillery — we’re not just talking about some bullets or guns.”

Two other rebels, who, like all those interviewed, asked not to be identified because of the sensitivity of the subject, described cash and supplies being ferried in for weeks.

Just ten days ago the FT cited Syrian rebels as saying "Turkey was [now] inactive as rebels struggled." The Economist said Turkey was now "periodically closing the Bab al-Hawa border crossing". In the new piece claims that Turkey is the operational, logistical master behind the Aleppo attack; that the attack was planned in Ankara and al-Qaeda/Nusra troops were possibly trained by the Turkish military. Moreover it claims that mass supplies over the border have intensified in recent days instead of coming in dropwise throughout the months before.

Ahrar al Sham, the Taliban like, U.S. supported terrorist group in Syria, is also suddenly empathizing extensive Turkish help.

These reports do not fit each other. According to these reports Turkey is either pulling back from the war on Syria or is intensifying it. What is it?

Yesterday the Russian President Putin met the Iranian President Rouhani in Azerbaijan. Today the Turkish President Erdogan meets Putin in St. Petersburg. In a TASS interview accompanying today's meeting Erdogan talks of new relations with Russia but still insist that "Assad must go" at about any price. He also says that al-Qaeda aka Jabhat al Nusra is, in his view, not a terrorist organization because it sometimes fights the Islamic State. That is consistent with U.S. and Israeli support for al-Qaeda in Syria.

In a counter to Turkish bluster Putin sent an agreement for a permanent Russian airbase in Syria for ratification to the Russian parliament. The message to Turkey is that Russia will not leave the scene and must be accommodated.

The meeting will, one way or another, set new political directions for the war on Syria. Turkish-Russian cooperation may intensify and the war peter out, or the conflict will further intensify with a renewed Russian engagement.

The FT piece emphasizing very recent mass logistics through Turkey (which may or many not have happened) was probably placed to depict Turkey in a more "western" role than it currently has. That would limit Erdogan's room to maneuver in St. Petersburg. But is it really plausible that Turkey, after a recent bloody U.S. coup attempt, intensified its back-work for the CIA,  even when it knows that this will hurt urgently needed new relations with Russia and Iran?

While the recent FT article is emphasizing Turkey's role, it is playing down U.S. engagement:

“The Americans, of course, knew what was going on. They ignored it to put some pressure back on Russia and Iran,” said a western diplomat in contact with the opposition.

We can be sure that the CIA is doing much more than just ignoring weapon supplies or looking on. The thousands of tons of weapons reaching al-Qaeda and other insurgents were brought in from Bulgaria on U.S. chartered ships. The MANPADs recently delivered to the Taliban equivalent in Syria, Ahrar al-Sham, certainly passed through U.S. hands. The FT also mentions Kerry's August 1 deadline which we believe marked a U.S. set date for the long planned Aleppo attack,  and for the new siege on the 1.2-1.5 million civilians on the government side of the city.

A recent New York Times piece (in which the paper for the first time admits intensive, longtime CIA involvement in Syria) emphasizes the central operational role of U.S. activities in the war on Syria:

For several years, the C.I.A. has joined with the spy services of several Arab nations to arm and train the rebels at bases in Jordan and Qatar, with the Saudis bankrolling much of the operation.

It is either Turkey (says the FT) or the CIA (says the NYT) which is in the lead. This contradiction adds to other finger pointing about who is the master conductor of, and culpable for the anti-Syrian operations.

One example: The Turkish military recently "rescued" a CIA spy who was wounded in the north Latakia region of Syria. The U.S. send helicopters to help its asset. The spy turned out to be journalist Lindsey Snell working on a report with Nusra for the intelligence outfit Vocativ. She was put into Turkish jail for illegally crossing the border. Was this another game or some real disagreement?

It could be that Turkish-U.S. cooperation on Syria, despite the coup-attempt in Turkey, is still excellent. That would imply that major conflicts playing out in the spy world and in the media are orchestrated fakes to confuse Syria and its allies.

But these conflicts may also point to real fighting behind the scenes. Fighting about who will be stuck with the tar-babies al-Qaeda in Syria and other "rebels" are likely to become.

Posted by b on August 9, 2016 at 16:20 UTC | Permalink

next page »

usa/cia fingerprints all over this depiction of events as well..

Posted by: james | Aug 9 2016 16:44 utc | 1

This is some phucked up diabolical sh!t.

Posted by: Fernando Arauxo | Aug 9 2016 17:01 utc | 2

The full-blown slaughter of Arabs is taking place, financed by Arabs (Saudis), performed by Arabs and cheered on by Arabs. The real instigators (USA, UK and Israel) are not only getting their dreams realized, but even manage to make a buck in the process. This is both really macabre and really impressive stuff.

Posted by: telescope | Aug 9 2016 17:16 utc | 4

When the rapprochement between Russia and Turkey first appeared a last month it looked like a huge story that strongly suggested that this would be good news for Syria since it seemed unlikely that Russia would agree if Turkey kept its logistic lines open to the rebel forces.

Not sure what Putin and Erdogan said to each other today but in their press conference they made a lot of nice talk about improving bilateral relations but also it sounds like they are deferring the question of Syria to future discussions. Whatever that means. However it does not look like Putin secured the deal we had hoped for: namely improved bilateral relations in exchange for Turkey dropping support for the Wahabbi terrorists.

Posted by: ToivoS | Aug 9 2016 17:31 utc | 5

The Outlaw US Empire and its Zionist sidekick are the primary movers behind the illegal invasion and war of aggression being waged on Syria--there are no "rebels," only terrorists. Their goal for the region remains the same as proclaimed during the 1990s, which is part of the Empire's goal of Global Domination. How Erdogan fits into and understands what's actually happening is only known by him; my question is, How much of a Compradore is he actually? Personally, I don't think his meeting with Putin and the rapprochement with Russia was altogether his idea; rather, he was forced into it thanks to the demands of domestic interests Erdogan cannot ignore along with the coup. The words coming from Western sources are just that--words. We must observe the behaviors.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 9 2016 17:32 utc | 6

"intelligence outfit Vocativ"

Isn't it this same outfit who did interview the Khans after their son's death and then went back again to the father when Trump came out against Muslims last year.

Posted by: Yul | Aug 9 2016 17:38 utc | 7

As per the press conference after Putin Erdogan meeting today, it seems that the Russian Turkish stream pipeline is alive again. That would make the Qatar pipeline redundant. And therefore all that investment in the Syrian war would come to a naught. Therefore Putin and Erdogan dont really need to discuss Syria now (as reported in the press conference too), the war in Syria would likely peter out. So lets watch the Turkish stream pipeline as an indicator.

Posted by: MeThinks | Aug 9 2016 17:48 utc | 8

In his interview to a Cuban media, 2 days after the Turkey failed putsch, Asad mentioned the role of Turkey in increasing its support in the few last months. This was part of the deal or "arming the trained moderates and send them against IS". If they did not send them, Jordan, KSA and other Gulf countries, not to mention Turkey and others, would have had them back home with not to do.

Posted by: Mina | Aug 9 2016 17:55 utc | 9

I still have my misgivings concerning Erdogan' sincerity. But I'm sure the Russians are far smarter than we tend to give them credits for. Should he try to be clever by half, Sultan Erdogan will quickly learn that there is a difference between Russia and the EU.

Posted by: Steve | Aug 9 2016 17:59 utc | 10

It looks more and more like western intelligence operators read Putin like a book. Now it looks like the supposed thaw between Russia and Erdogan was, in part, yet another feint, another distraction. Putin's mind was distracted by so many things, recently, by anything not to do with the place where the real action was to happen - Aleppo. The Western battle plan for Aleppo was evil, yes, but so elegant, and it worked on so many levels. Damn these people are evil, but wow are they good...

As for Putin, his bungling is so horrendous one has to wonder what his real game is. Is it that classic technique of subterfuge, controlled opposition? Is he playing at opposing the Hegemon?

Someone said we can't blame Putin for the Manpads that the US sent in. Well, sure, that's true. So let's blame Putin for pulling back his efforts in Syria just as the tide of the war was turning and thus not only losing all momentum, but giving the US all the time it needed to supply its proxies not only with Manpads, but hell, artillery and all the rest. Pity the poor SAA soldiers, green but heroic, having to face hardened jihadi forces and mercs, all rested and kitted up to the max.

Posted by: paul | Aug 9 2016 18:05 utc | 11

Remember the Free Syrian Army attack against ISIS at al Bukamal? ISIS acquired enough equipment for an army in the supplies delivery operation - sorry, 'attack'

Posted by: Yonatan | Aug 9 2016 18:09 utc | 12

The Turkish military has a part loyal to Turkey and a part loyal to the US via the Gulen movement.

Posted by: Yonatan | Aug 9 2016 18:12 utc | 13

read again, erdogan did not say nusra not terrorists, he said the kurdish separatists were terrorists too just like nusra. erdogan said the assad must go bs to distract the west, the rest of the turk increasing support narrative is cia disinfo

Posted by: jersey | Aug 9 2016 18:16 utc | 14
Question (retranslated): My question is for both presidents, first the President of Turkey, then Mr Putin.

In terms of resolving the situation in Syria, there have obviously been some differences between the two countries, between the two leaders. However, both countries are in favour of democratic changes in that country, and you talked about this.

How much did you focus on Syria today? Will both countries perhaps develop a a road map to resolve this issue?

Recep Tayyip Erdogan: First of all, I would like to say that we have not yet discussed this issue during today’s talks. Following the news conference, we plan to discuss it thoroughly. So, I cannot say anything, since we did not discuss this issue.

Vladimir Putin: I can confirm what our guest, the President of Turkey, just said. Everyone knows that our views on a Syria settlement have not always aligned. We agreed that following this meeting we will meet separately with foreign ministers and representatives of special services, share information, and look for a solution.

You mentioned democratic reforms. We believe that democratic change can only be achieved by democratic means. This is our principled position.

With regard to harmonising our views and approaches, I think this is also possible, if only because we have a common goal, which is to resolve the Syria crisis. I think that based on this platform and this general approach, we will start looking for a mutually acceptable

Posted by: okie farmer | Aug 9 2016 18:16 utc | 15

Yul@3 - b posted this 12 days ago: Abu Ghraib Torture Company Re-Hired For Syria - How ISIS Will Benefit

The U.S. pretty much sucks at any ISIS intelligence. CACI torture annexes to the 'secret' Rmeilan and Sabit air bases in Syria should augment our useless intelligence with even more useless - but extremely expensive - intelligence. Plus, every torture victim CACI creates is good for another half-dozen ISIS recruits. CACI is a psychopathic's wet dream: a self-sustaining anti-terrorism business.

We will all eventually either work for CACI or be among their torture victims. I hear they were hired to work the FEMA internment camps in the U.S. after martial law is declared. But that's a secret - don't tell anybody.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Aug 9 2016 18:18 utc | 16

paul #11

Your Putin hatred is intense (friend of Proyectby any chance?) You come across as a classic concern troll -- Oh the poor Syrian people! If you hate Putin so deeply then why do repeat his words almost verbatim: Putin in his UN speech said that the Wahabbi inspired jihadists might be evil but they are not stupid. This was a warning to the west to stop trying to manipulate them for the west's perceived interests.

Posted by: ToivoS | Aug 9 2016 18:20 utc | 17

The US has several bases inside Syrian territory, at least one with an airfield. They could delivery any and all kinds of weapons to ISIS without third-party involvement. Blame could be passed on to Turkey in an attempt to discredit it in the eyes of Russia and to continue the theme of using Erdogan as the patsy - being the 'sole supplier' in much the same way as Oswald was the 'sole shooter' in Kennedy's assassination. There are also the numerous 'humanitarian' air drops which are inevitably weapons supplies.

Posted by: Yonatan | Aug 9 2016 18:22 utc | 18

Good point James @1

I watched the Erdogan-Putin presser live. When asked if Syria had been discussed, Putin said, there are some issues we have been at odds but after this press conference we are scheduled to discuss Syria.

RT: Putin did not attempt to gloss over the disagreements over the Syria crisis, where Turkey has insisted that President Bashar Assad, whom Russia supports, must be deposed. But the two leaders agreed to stage a separate meeting to hammer out a new Syria policy.
“Our views on resolving the Syrian situation have often been at odds,” said Putin. “But I believe that finding a common approach is possible, at least because we both want the crisis to end. We will use this as the basis for finding common solutions.”

In turn, Erdogan praised Putin for personally calling him to express his support following the failed July 15 military coup attempt.

said Erdogan.

= = = = =

a grateful Erdogan on his knees. …for the support of “my friend Vlad”

Turkish Stream pipeline project restored: check
$20 bin Nuclear power plant Akkuyu classified strategic project: check
economic ties restored: check

In D.C. there are fluttered hearts over this rapprochement.

Gotta give this one to Vlad Putin. He took the opportunity of the attempted coup to reach out after being “stabbed in the back” I read it was speculated RF got wind of the coup plans and alerted Erdogan.

Events present opportunities. Erdogan knows ascension to the EU is not in play so he wants in on the new silk road and the SCO. He will be required to ditch NATO for the SCO. Look East.

Posted by: likklemore | Aug 9 2016 18:23 utc | 19

The only thing that's obvious is that Erdogan must be very nervous right now. I don't think his mind is on the Syria situation much at all. Meanwhile the MIC is pouring resources (paid for by someone or other) into a pointless attack on Syria, and ultimately Iran, and so on...

The whole thing apparently exists to keep the pentagon and the agencies in business.

Posted by: blues | Aug 9 2016 18:26 utc | 20

Maybe Erdo was not the one who really shot down the Russian strike fighter? Maybe something more sinister needed to be covered up?

Posted by: blues | Aug 9 2016 18:29 utc | 21

Erdogan will have to give something to get something.

Vladimir Putin: I can confirm what our guest, the President of Turkey, just said. Everyone knows that our views on a Syria settlement have not always aligned. We agreed that following this meeting we will meet separately with foreign ministers and representatives of special services, share information, and look for a solution.

Turkey does not have to be active. They just need a blind eye.

Posted by: somebody | Aug 9 2016 18:47 utc | 22

On the coup day, a high AKP guy said the person who shot the Russian plane was one of the Gulenist playing a role in the coup. Now I've heard MSM repeating the shot down plane story today ad nauseam without any of them mentioning that element.
Add to this that at the moment everyone needs Erdo. He is the sole guy on earth who can still speak to the 'rebels' (apart from the delusional, day-dreaming, high-flyers in the Gulf, but these are precisely the ones the West is tired to talk to).

Posted by: Mina | Aug 9 2016 18:56 utc | 23

So is Vocativ Mossad, or CIA? (offices in NYC, Tel Aviv). Does it even matter? I don't know why it is that the idea sometimes surfaces that these letter agencies have different goals, or goals at odds with each other.

AVAAZ, Vocativ, Vice....perfect business model for greedy hipsters; 1.) Get sent around to exotic places as a sort of hippie Jason Bourne; with a "cause", 2.) Collect filthy .gov lucre, after all it's been properly laundered! (Pwogressive credentials intact)

Posted by: sejomoje | Aug 9 2016 19:14 utc | 24

Erdo would lose support at home if he openly backstabbed the Islamists. He had to make a show of supporting them still. That doesn't mean he wants them to win. They are now concentrated in an area that could get them trapped inside east aleppo themselves.

Posted by: What the Dickens | Aug 9 2016 19:27 utc | 25

On one hand I think Putin bungled with that lame ceasefire to nowhere. On the other hand, if he's willing to let Erdogan continue to bea rabid dog,while still getting what he wants eventually (Turkstream + a win in Syria), then he is a smooth operator

Posted by: bbbb | Aug 9 2016 19:32 utc | 26

@b - the FT was only this week quoting the 300k citizens in east aleppo too! so much propaganda floatimg about.
what we do know is that the Turkish Armed Forces has been purged of most all Kemalists, which would normally have been closer to NATO / US interests. We also know from other spurces that Turkey has limited border access to terrorists - reported that injured are not being transpprted to Turkish hospitals now.
But the Turks would not completely drop one side for another - they are the masters of duplicity. So, I suggest that some semblance of coopwration is continuing but probably exaggerated for propaganda purposes by FT.
On the Syria point, while today's meeting in St Peter seems to have produced decisions on Turk Stream and Akuyu Nuclear Plant, AKP alligned current affairs programmes are suggestimg that agreement on Syria can be achieved. One in particular, a haber, said that it would
be achieved on condition that Azerbaijan - Aremenia ternsions be resolved. Very interesting take - Apparently Armenian PM is due to meet with Putin this week(?).
Laslty, Yeni Safak which is very AKP ran a front page saying "Kerry, Late, too late" - referring to his trip to turkey towards the end of this month. Will Kerry be able to trump anything agreed by Putin and Erdogan? Unlikely. Turkey is really upping the ante.

Posted by: AtaBrit | Aug 9 2016 19:42 utc | 27

@15 okie.. thanks.

@17 toivo... ditto..

@18 yonatan.. good observations.. thanks.

@19 likklemore.. thanks.. i believe the order of events was erdogan apologizing before the failed coup took place.. either way - all good so far as it goes on the surface here..

@21 blues.. that has always been a possibility.. nothing is ever so simple in war..

@24 sejomoje.. thanks for that..

Posted by: james | Aug 9 2016 19:50 utc | 28

I don't know what Putin is whingeing about, he invited the evil US Empire Into Syria. At the cost of the slaughter of thousands more Lives lost, and against the wishes of the Syrian government. And all those idiotic peace deals is where all these proxy terrorists needed time to rearm and resupply with manpads and more.

The idiot Putin thought he could win over a PR campaign by making the US look bad. How did that work out for all those extra thousands of Syrian civilians and troops killed.

Putin withdrew air forces from Syria which meant more ground troops defending Syria will being slaughtered on the ground, Just so Putin keep his PR sham going about his original 4 month deadline bullshit. You tell me, when Hezbollah, Syrian troops, and other helpers were being slaughtered on the ground for PR purposes how would you feel ?

Posted by: tom | Aug 9 2016 19:58 utc | 29

On the same day as the meeting, Syria has donated to Russia the air base that Russia was temporarily using. Putin has presented to the Duma that it become a permanent base. And so all parties are assured that no deal with Turkey today has harmed Syria, and the world and Turkey are assured that to harm Syria you have to get past Russia first.

A Firm Syrian Commitment: Putin proposes permanent Air Force Base

As for Turkey, Syria now becomes the task of Russia's rather well known diplomacy to work on the Turks for an alliance in the theater. I look forward to it. Apparently the border was not sealed. This remains to be achieved. There must be many details to work out in Turkey's future orientation. But if the western gutter press is pushing the story of a porous border, this speaks of the opposite.

Posted by: Grieved | Aug 9 2016 19:59 utc | 30

The amazing link below firstly demonstrates how evil the US is and why I always call it the evil US Empire, and the second point is how moronicly stupid Putin is to inite this evil into Syria.

If Putin is the claimed defender against the evil US empire that so many delusional cultists believe, then we're all fucked and might as well surrender to the US empire now,

Posted by: tom | Aug 9 2016 20:11 utc | 31

@likklemore @19
Putin's message of support was timely and effective. But don't forget that the raproachment had already been kickstarted. The main driver being the success of RFs targeted sanctions - Turkey fruit/ veg sector lost 80% revenue and Tourism lost 40%!!

Posted by: AtaBrit | Aug 9 2016 20:11 utc | 32

Erdogan is just like Trump in that he plays on peoples' projections of what they want to see in him.

People want to see a unification of the 'northern' Muslim world - from Turkey through the Caucasus to the Central Asian 'stans - realigned with anyone but the CIA/USA/KSA. So that's what they project onto Erdogan. He loves it, keeps the border open to Syria, the CIA/USA/KSA drive their endless line of trucks and headchoppers through.

Same thing with Trump. People want to see a rapprochement between the US and Russia and an end to the US' endless wars in MENA and everywhere else. So that's what they project onto Trump. He loves it, keeps slamming people of color wherever they are, hires neo-cons as his advisors and for his cabinet, should he win.

These two are the world's most dangerous people, given the people rooting for them, at this particular point in time.

Posted by: jfl | Aug 9 2016 20:17 utc | 33

So far all the give has been on Russia's side ... all the take on Erdogan's. And through Erdogan on the part of the terminally evil CIA/USA/KSA. I have no criticism of Russia. All I know is what I read at MoA. But I am skeptical of Erdogan as the champion of anything/anyone but himself/Erdogan.

Posted by: jfl | Aug 9 2016 20:21 utc | 34

It is possible that the very recent reports about the Turkish support for the rebs are fakes from CIA/Obama designed to undermine the today's meeting.

Posted by: mv | Aug 9 2016 20:23 utc | 35

Good news from Aleppo.

The al-Qaeda route into east-Aleppo has been closed again. Hizbullah special forces took a hill that covers the road leading there. Preparations are ongoing to throw the al-Qaeda dudes out of Aleppo again.

Posted by: b | Aug 9 2016 20:28 utc | 36

The two most significant events in Turkey over the last 12 months and Russia has benefited from them both.
1) Downing of the jet - allowed RF to get tougher in destroying Turkey's involvement in N.Syria and show Erdogan who's boss in the region by slapping sanctions on Turkey.
2) The Coup - which has taken what was assumed to be a trade and maybe energy reallignment into a potentially regionally significant shit in Turkey's foreign policy and foreign priorities - to Russia's benefit.
And the West was apparently caught unawares by both!

Posted by: AtaBrit | Aug 9 2016 20:30 utc | 37

@36 b

Thanks for the good news.

Posted by: jfl | Aug 9 2016 20:35 utc | 38

Posted by: mv | Aug 9, 2016 4:23:04 PM | 35

yes, even likely.

Posted by: somebody | Aug 9 2016 20:38 utc | 39

Erdogan and Putin talk after the presser

A few minutes after introductions and statements

Erdogan: Assad must go.

Putin: Assad has been a steadfast ally and if he goes Syria falls to the Jihadis. We can not accept this.

Erdogan: Yes I understand. We are now a target of Jihadis also - Turkey has been attacked by ISIS, so we share you concern.

Putin: But you helped ISIS for years! You allowed weapons trafficking, oil smuggling, and gave medical care to ISIS fighters.

Erdogan: I did what I had to do. Today, we are in a different situation. As you know, America and Gulf Arabs are behind ISIS and they used me just as they use everyone. Now they want me gone - the attempted coup proves this!

Putin: How can I trust you? Turkey is still a NATO country.

Erdogan: We share common enemies Vlad: Gulenists and Jihadis. We must not be trapped in the past.

Putin: Why can't you change your position then. Show me that you have turned away from the West by supporting Assad and applying for membership in SCO.

Erdogan: I have a better idea. You agree to transition Assad and I will guaranty that Syria is a non-Sectarian state.

Let me tell you - as your friend, my dear Vladimir - the Gulf Arabs are unhappy with USA/West. They see them as weak and uncommitted. Obama would not bomb Syria in 2013 and then made peace with Iran. If you work with me, there is a good chance that I can bring them over to YOUR side. But they must see a gesture from you. Assad must go.

Putin: I will consider what you say. Thank you.

Erdogan: I am very excited to begin our new relationship! I know we will be great friends and comrades!

Thank you and goodbye.

Erdogan and his aids leave the room.

Putin to Lavrov: I find it quite amusing that Kerry also offered wonderful things - resolution of Ukraine conflict and joint action against ISIS - if only Russia betrays Assad. And by betraying Assad, we betray the Iranians also. And create turmoil in SCO because China wants Iran to join.

What a mess!

Lavrov: Well at least we've agreed on TurkStream.

Putin: Well, if this is just a feint then TurkStream is a pipe-dream.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Aug 9 2016 20:41 utc | 40

@36 b Thanks for the update and posting.

I think that the war on Syria is being ultimately led by the global plutocratic families that own private finance and everything else. Its money in their pockets for every bullet or bomb used and, for them, what is not to like about constant turmoil that keeps them in power and everyone else as slaves to some degree or another.

But hey! I just want to see a focused effort to end the centuries of this bullshit of private finance and its Gawd of Mammon perversity of social incentives. I posit that if private finance is eliminated from the world that we would all stop fighting each other for the scraps we are currently allowed and find lots of ways to cooperate on solving human problems.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Aug 9 2016 20:44 utc | 41

Tomorrow when u wake up just thank god if u r not living in the US with that kind of maniac

Posted by: Mina | Aug 9 2016 20:56 utc | 42

I guess the Russian-Turkish relations can proceed according the "regular package", pursuing economic projects and exchanges to mutual benefit, both nations need some money and jobs, and "de-luxe" that would resolve the Syrian issue. They decided to settle the issue of the "regular package" first, and discuss more vexing threats and counter-threats afterwards.

Turkey can crank up or down the supplies to jihadists. Russia can do the same with YPG, with different degrees of diligence for controlling the "final destination". I do not know all that they can do and threat each other, but they concluded that adding "mutually assured economic destruction" to the mix would not do them any good.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Aug 9 2016 21:07 utc | 43

thanks b,

@40 jr - did you write that? lol.. it was funny.

@42 mina.. read this..

Posted by: james | Aug 9 2016 21:09 utc | 44

@29 Tom

I agree

@ b update

Once again Hezbollah to the rescue. The SAA basically play "hold the liberated areas" role while everyone else does the fighting for them. They are known for being big sell outs which is why SAA keeps losing gained ground bec of rats and spies. This is war its a dirty game.

Its simple, Turkey, Israel, Saudi understand one language .


Until you beat em back or the Iranians march in from the east this will go on forever.

Turkey is not an independent state, its a puppet state just like saudi arabia and hell just like syria.

All pawns to the global super powers. You do as your told, those who dont get punished and the only one in the middle east who took no orders from no one was Iran back in the khomeini days. Did you all forget how east and west were in bed together with saddam ?

All these politcians are expendable. Its just bs

"Politics is about embracing yourself in other peoples lies"

Wake up and smell the coffee, until someone does something major this will drag on for a few more years

Posted by: Deebo | Aug 9 2016 21:12 utc | 45

@ James 28 - Thanks you. Yes, Mr. Erdogan’s apology was in late June before the failed coup

@ Atabrit 32

@ jfl 33

The Telegraph, UK reports – on the rapprochement and wants in on the bandwagon see link below

Erdogan praises ‘dear friend’ Vladimir Putin in Russian-Turkish détente

IMO key graphs:

"In an apparent attempt to leverage the restoration of relations with Russia, one Turkish official warned that relations with the United States would suffer if the US does not extradite Fethullah Gulen,..[.]

"If the US does not deliver (Gulen), they will sacrifice relations for the sake of a terrorist,” Bekir Bozdag, Turkey”s Justice Minister, told reporters during a televised briefing in Ankara on Tuesday.

[..] On Tuesday, Denmark’s governing party suggested the bloc should cancel Turkey’s accession bid because of Mr. Erdogan’s “undemocratic initiatives.[.]

= = = = =

UK on the road to detente

Vladimir Putin and Theresa May agree to improve relations between Russia and UK and hold face-to-face meeting

“Vladimir Putin and Theresa May have spoken for the first time since she took office and both expressed dissatisfaction with the current state of Russian-British relations.

[In] the phone call, which Moscow said was initiated by Britain, both leaders "expressed dissatisfaction with the current parameters of cooperation in both the political and economic sphere".

= = = =

Shockingly, out of step with detente

Kill Russians and Iranians, threaten Assad,’ says ex-CIA chief backing Clinton

“The ex-CIA chief, who worked with Clinton while she was secretary of state, told CBS This Morning co-host Charlie Rose that Iran and Russia should “pay a big price” in Syria – and by that he meant killing them.”

~ ~ ~ ~ ~
I’ll wait until after the Rio Olympics – expect more from Wikileaks' trove of emails.

Posted by: likklemore | Aug 9 2016 21:13 utc | 46


b--- Thanks for the update

Posted by: jo6pac | Aug 9 2016 21:18 utc | 47

Hillary aide, ex cia deputy chief: kill russians and iranians

Posted by: erik | Aug 9 2016 21:25 utc | 48

One indication that the Aleppo battle currently favours the SAA and allies is that the UN is suddenly calling for a ceasefire in
the area.

In the Guardian article, near the end of the piece, cognitive dissonance reigns:

"American sponsored rebel forces have long been entangled with al-Nusra, and many Washington-backed forces would regard an attack on al-Nusra as an attack on the Syrian revolution itself...(with al-Nusra "re-branded") Washington seems reluctant to denounce this new group as a bogus rebranding, partly because it knows so many of the already weak rebel groups it does support are willing, or even eager, to work with the effective and disciplined al-Nusra forces."

So is Syria and its allies fighting al-Qaeda or, as suggested earlier in the piece, cruelly engaged in "bombardment that is designed to break the will of the citizens that have refused to flee their homes." The Guardian's readership is offered a confused narrative.

Posted by: jayc | Aug 9 2016 21:38 utc | 49


Anyone who takes these things seriously simply doesn't understand how America conducts its foreign policy. Morrell merely plays the "bad cop" routine, so that real decision-makers - Obama and Kerry - could play the "good cop". What Morrell says has zero real impact. The US will never openly attack Russia. Ever.

Posted by: telescope | Aug 9 2016 21:44 utc | 50

Mina @42
That's some crazy SHIT!

Posted by: okie farmer | Aug 9 2016 21:48 utc | 51

Can't believe Putin has made all those concessions on normalization of trade, pipe lines and nuclear power stations etc, before even discussing Syria, especially the urgency in getting an agreement with Erdogan for him to close the border and stop the proxy war in Syria, which is killing Russian service personnel on a regular basis.Or could it be that because Erdogen knows the war is lost, maybe the deal has already been done. This tweet from Elijah J. Magnier ‏@EjmAlrai 6h6 hours ago

Is it a coincidence that the circle around #Aleppo is closed just before #Putin and #Erdogan meeting on #Syria starting now? Could be.
30 retweets 28 likes

Posted by: harrylaw | Aug 9 2016 21:52 utc | 52

b. Nice update. Thank you.

Mina @42; Erik @ 48

Morell answered b’s headliner

”Who Now Leads The War On Syria - The CIA Or Turkey?”

and Morell confirms Hillary’s foreign policy will be more of the same.

NYT allowed this Morell’s Op-Ed:

titled "I Ran the C.I.A. Now I'm Endorsing Hillary Clinton" in which he not only praised Hillary but slammed Donald Trump, as follows: "Mrs. Clinton is highly qualified to be commander in chief. I trust she will deliver on the most important duty of a president — keeping our nation safe. Second, Donald J. Trump is not only unqualified for the job, but he may well pose a threat to our national security.... In the intelligence business, we would say that Mr. Putin had recruited Mr. Trump as an unwitting agent of the Russian Federation."

Via Zerohedge

~ ~ ~

a Sicko
on 08 November, choose wisely or we may need to emigrate to Antarctica.

Posted by: likklemore | Aug 9 2016 22:25 utc | 53

@ harrylaw 52

Erdogan knows which way the wind now blows. The Jet stream has deviated, is heading east.
UK PM, Theresa May and Mr. Putin will meet face-to-face for détente in British-Russia relations. See my link to The Telegraph at 46.

I once read a description of the Russian mindset. They converse with their enemies/opponents, even call them “partners” and, they are patient, endures insults. They saddle their horses slowly with great care but they ride fast.

Posted by: likklemore | Aug 9 2016 22:39 utc | 54

There is nothing contradictory about globalizing Zionist elites working together to 'cull' the human herd of 'extremist' elements. World Wars 1 & 2 were arguably primarily about this exactly.

The strategy currently being employed is called 'Hornet's Nest.' Use your imagination to figure out what this means and why the term is now mostly suppressed in Masonic media worldwide.

All parties agree the war in Syria and Iraq must continue until all revolution-disposed persons are eliminated. No one wants any of these well trained terrorists to return to the countries of their residence or birth, though a useful number will slip past to support the fraudulent War On Terror narrative sustaining US AND Russian elites and their drive to normalize fascism.

As ever, the main event concerns class: i.e. Globalists versus everyone else. How this most basic of all political concepts has been wiped from consciousness, after having been given over to Marxists to discombobulate for 150 years, boggles my mind.

Posted by: alfa alfalfa | Aug 9 2016 22:46 utc | 55

Author should not be surprised.
The confusion is a name of the game in ME and always has been,
and especially confusion between western propaganda outlets during times of
Orwellian change of narratives about Turkey in MSM we are experiencing.

My own advice is not to look for facts in MSM excretions but only
for potentially changing attitudes of D.C. NEOCONS to Russians and War in Syria.

Here is a take trying to unwind the confusion:

Posted by: Kalen | Aug 9 2016 23:33 utc | 56


I don't know alfalfa. Those global zionists are going to have do a lot of culling to pare down 6.5 billion to whatever the carrying capacity of the earth may be- probably somewhere between 500k and 3 or 4 billion. And then how does the golden 500k or billion or whatever continue to live without killing each other.

It seems to me that the globalists of today are not what they were then. None of us are alfalfa. Humanity must have died around 1904.

Remember the time you were reciting the charge of the light brigade in miss crabapples class? That's the result I foresee for the globalists of today.

Posted by: beta buckwheat | Aug 10 2016 0:33 utc | 57

Re; #31 Your post is just tone deaf. If you go back and look at the timeline, Gen. Qasem Soleimani was injured, almost killed and had to return to Iran to recuperate from his injuries. It seems to be the case that he is the one man Putin trusts to have a region-wide view of assets and objectives and to motivate all groups of fighters in the field. Putin pivoted to the negotiating table to see have much progress he could make there, meantime. The Saudi/Israeli side also knew he was out of theater and that the Syrians were back on their heels as a result. They took full advantage to regroup and rearm. Putin had to decide whether to sit on his hands, pursue diplomacy, or trust his war to a 2nd-tier guy. You saw the decision.

The disadvantage for the Saudis/Israelis is that they have to manage through rag-tag ragamuffins, undercover agents masquerading as Muslims, and religious looney-tunes. Putin has full access to three professional, and local, military groups through Soleimani...The Syrians, the Iranian special forces and Hezbollah. It is Israel's nightmare that Hezbollah grows more professional by the week.

It really makes you wonder how ham-handed of the US to lose Persia as an ally. And how anxious Britain is to get them back. (see Basra, recent visits by Prince Charles etc)

#55 This is also nonsense. The only groups that have been systematically "culled" are Christians, who have managed to live alongside their neighbors, though generally unarmed, since Constantinople fell in 1453. And the Yazidis and other isolated groups who sit on valuable real estate.

Posted by: S.H.E. | Aug 10 2016 0:57 utc | 58

@58- ma'am, you forgot Palestinians and Armenians. Possibly others.

Posted by: beta buckwheat | Aug 10 2016 1:05 utc | 59

Hearten to this spanky:

Posted by: beta buckwheat | Aug 10 2016 1:22 utc | 60

@54 likklemore - concerning the Russian mindset. I don't know if anyone has explained it as engagingly as Dmitry Orlov. You must surely have seen this but it's always good to get an excuse to read it:

Peculiarities of Russian National Character

Also, I often cite the Saker, but I've probably gained more strategically useful knowledge about Russia and its soul from his writings than anywhere else.

Posted by: Grieved | Aug 10 2016 1:52 utc | 61

@19 txs. Sounds about right..
@61 Indeed, Orlov is great & generous thinker.

Posted by: Lozion | Aug 10 2016 2:40 utc | 62

@61 grieved

Such a treat to read a feet-on-the-ground analysis ... starting from how things are, rather than from how things will be, just as soon as we complete our subjugation of the world.

Posted by: jfl | Aug 10 2016 3:29 utc | 63

tom #31

Oh you silly billy. Putin is not the defender of the whole world against the evil empire. He is the defender of Russian national interests. Her is not going to go to war to stop US aggression. He will go to war to protect Russia. It turns out that Russia has some serious interests in Syria. The Wahabbi inspired jihadists are a real threat against Russia's southern oblasts. Russia knows that both Turkey and Saudi Arabia were backing what were then called "Chechen separatists" 15 to 20 years ago whose goal was to set up an Islamist caliphate in Russia's southern provinces. They have been fighting these fanatics much longer than has any western power and also are aware that the US and Saudi Arabia have been using these fanatics as proxy forces against Russia.

Russia's goal in Syria is to defeat those forces. It will, if possible, do so without engaging the US in direct combat. Thus the need for diplomacy. If they can achieve their goals without having to fight the US they will do so. Right now, it turns out, that the survival of Assad is essential to Russian interests.

Posted by: ToivoS | Aug 10 2016 5:39 utc | 64

ToivoS @64: Exactly right. China should be playing a stronger role in the anti Jihadi struggle, too, for similar reasons.

The U.S. has allied itself with some real unredeemable a@@holes this time -- starting with Saudi Arabia and ending with Sunni head-chopper fanatics and mercenaries -- and so hopefully at least in Syria it will lose.

Posted by: fairleft | Aug 10 2016 6:06 utc | 65

Erdogan is wasting his time hoping to cozy up to Putin. He shot himself (and Mr Hopey Changey) in both feet when he pulled a ready-made list of govt employees to be tossed in the slammer, out of his pocket within hours of announcing the end of the Highly Convenient Fake Coup. Blind Ambition is an Impatient Bitch for megalomaniacs like Recep Tayip Erdogan.

With a bit of luck Vlad will ask him to prove that he's not pulling Russia's leg by dropping into Damascus on his way home to apologise to The Syrian People for being a deluded asshole, and telling Obama to GF Himself whilst in Damascus.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Aug 10 2016 12:33 utc | 66


Tourism was reinstated immediately after the apology - before the coup.
Veg / Fruit exports - Turkish sector took 80% hit - are not going to be restored in forseeable future - RF is currently sourcing from Syria, Iran and Egypt.
Pipeline and Nuclear are very much mutually benefitial, and the former has still a long way to go to get off the ground.


It looks like the meetings have been organised as TR-RF relations (yesterday). Regional issues (today)

Regional issues are on the table today- estimate:
+ Azerbaijan - Armenia (Armenian President is meeting with Putin today)
+ Syria - Kurds
+ Strategy - (Erdogan meets Rouhani later this wek.)

Putim may be holding the cards, but he needs Erdogan. And anyway he is going to be realistic, pragmatic - he is not going to try to screw Turkey and he is not going to humiliate Erdogan.

Posted by: AtaBrit | Aug 10 2016 12:37 utc | 67

@jackrabbit Good One Mate. :-)

Posted by: AtaBrit | Aug 10 2016 12:41 utc | 68

Following up on Erdo-Putin meeting, from the turkish side:

Posted by: Jean | Aug 10 2016 13:30 utc | 69

@ Grieved 61 @ jfl 63

Thank you. Yes, it is a treat to read Dimitry Orlov and occasionally the Saker

Posted by: likklemore | Aug 10 2016 13:36 utc | 70

OT;The graun had a story about Ukrainian troops attacking Crimea.
I bet they are trying to preempt Trump by unleashing the dogs of war,as once it starts,its hard to stop,witness the War of Terror.

Posted by: dahoit | Aug 10 2016 14:32 utc | 71

Re: Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 9, 2016 1:32:51 PM | 6

I haven't seen this discussed anywhere, but could it be that the Turkish "coup" was in fact staged, but staged by whom?

Could it have been staged by the US in cahoots with Erdogan to give him an excuse to "distance" himself from the US/West, to cut deals with Russia - one of those deals being to trade 'good relations with Turkey' for Russia giving up on Syria/Assad?

So, in fact the whole thing has been Kabuki to deceive the Russians and mess up their Syrian policy which has thus far been steadfast?

It is next level deception, but I wouldn't put it past the CIA and Erdogan. Both are snakes and one hopes the Russians have considered their opponents are trying to play them.

Even as far as letting it be known to the Russian spies that there was an imminent coup attempt to come against Erdogan and that the Russians warning Erdogan of the coup was in fact part of the whole plan cooked up from the start?

It is an extra level on the whole thing, but if we observe what is now going on in regards to Aleppo, who could say for sure this is not what is really happening?

All the "sound" and "fury" between the US & Turkey is all for show?

Sure, some latitude is given to Erdogan to take his pound of flesh from the EU for instance, and sign up to a Russian pipeline (which may never actually be used? Or it may be, what concern is it for the US if Turkey gains control over EU energy supplies if in fact Turkey is still in the tank for the US despite all the disinfo we are subjected to?)

Posted by: Jules | Aug 10 2016 15:28 utc | 72

Re: Posted by: Jackrabbit | Aug 9, 2016 4:41:58 PM | 40

Precisely my thoughts. Well put.

I would never trust this snake Erdogan until "he/they/Turkey" DO SOMETHING concrete on the ground in Syria that really demonstrates their intentions.

Talk is cheap. Very cheap.

Posted by: Jules | Aug 10 2016 15:46 utc | 73

Robert Fisk has an entertaining piece on the new situation:

Posted by: Mr Toad | Aug 10 2016 18:32 utc | 74

PS, for what it's worth, my friend in the neighborhood kebab joint with family in Turkey and with whom I've had the odd fleeting chat about the region's politics strongly believes the coup was genuine and done by Gulenists rather than Kemalists.
In addition, another customer overheard us and volunteered that she'd just returned from holiday in the same hotel as Erdogan's entourage and had seen some bullet holes for which the hotel management apologized.
I appreciate that it's an extraordinarily unlikely coincidence, but it is quite true.

Posted by: Mr Toad | Aug 10 2016 18:51 utc | 75

"Same hotel as Erdogan's entourage had been in." She arrived in Turkey shortly after the coup.

Posted by: Mr Toad | Aug 10 2016 18:58 utc | 76

TR - RF situation

Posted by: AtaBrit | Aug 10 2016 19:07 utc | 77

@Mr Toad
Not at all surprising that your mates believe it to be Gulen. Before the coup even, but after the apology to RF, AKP (the new PM actually, Binali) resurrected Gulen as the new public enemy. The first time he was referred to as a 'terrorrist' and 'worse than ISIS' was literally days before the coup.
From that point onwards every news programme on all but the odd foreign channel carries the latest daily 'feto' (gulen terrorist) story.
Every crime or misdemeanour of the AKP government over the last decade is now the fault of Gulen. To the extent that Bilal Erdogan even had the gaul to blame the Gezi Park protests on Gulen - though gracioualy concedeing that most people involved had been 'fooled' by Gulen and were probably not terrorists! (He also, graciously acknowledged that the corruption accusation against him and his father were also the work of Gulenists!)
This kind of blanket propaganda is inescapable, short of switching off the news!
I am not old enough to have witnessed the McCarthy purges, but this Gulen hunt can not be far different. His books are publicly burnt; his effigy hung in squares by a noose; celebrities are 'confessing' that they too had been fooled by Gulen (one was foed for 14 years apparently!). Others are being publicly demonised for not condemning Gulen on Twitter! Its unbelievable.

Posted by: AtaBrit | Aug 10 2016 19:22 utc | 78

Why do so many articles about the TR-RF reconciliation assert that 'the coup' pushed Erdogan toward Russia? Why do most articles completely ignore the fact that Erdogan apologised to Putin before the coup and that, frankly, it was because Turkey's economy, already slowing down, has been hit very badly by Russian sanctions!
Would ackowledging the success of Russia's sanctions against Turkey shine a questioning light on US's, to date, unsuccessful sanctions against Russia?

Posted by: AtaBrit | Aug 10 2016 19:40 utc | 79

AtaBrit, my mate didn't specifically mention Gulen, but he believed (or said so) that the coup was religiously motivated.
As for reasons for the rapprochement, the current rationale is that the US is suspected of being implicated while the Russians are believed to have tipped off Erdogan.
True? Who knows, but it does satisfy the requirements of Ockham's razor.

Posted by: Mr Toad | Aug 10 2016 20:01 utc | 80

@78/79 atabrit.. good comments and questions which many like myself also conclude and ask.. thanks..

Posted by: james | Aug 10 2016 21:38 utc | 81

Whether media "minimize" US involvement or not - since Obama lost his gambit to bomb Syria it has been largely minimized anyway, except to those paying VERY close attention,the reader of MOA for ex. - Turkey is still the primary cog on the (largely US paid for and "engineered" ) Syria machine of death..The reports of Russian/Turkish "rapproachment" were premature and overblown in webland..Turkey has not watered down its hyper-hostility to Iran and Syria and when you look past the lukewarm reports of "rapproachment" to what's still very much going on, to Russia, one whit. The war is still grinding on whatever political weirdness happened in Turkey, and whomever was "behind it" (or not). Proud NATO member Turkey has not switched sides and is not going to

Posted by: tSinilats | Aug 10 2016 21:49 utc | 82

Mr Toad @75:

... she'd just returned from holiday in the same hotel as Erdogan's entourage and had seen some bullet holes ...
Erdogan is said to have left the hotel before coup forces arrived, so why would there be bullet holes?

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Aug 10 2016 22:40 utc | 83

tSinilats @82:

(largely US paid for and "engineered" )
Not just USA. It is a joint effort of USA-KSA-Israel, and paid for mostly by KSA as described by Sy Hersh in "The Redirection".

Many other governments find it to be in their interest to play along due to economic interests such as arms deals, future contracts for reconstruction, etc.

The multitude of nations and interests allows for a diffusion of responsibility. They use this to their advantage: its all done covertly and it is difficult to assign blame to any one nation or group.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Aug 10 2016 22:58 utc | 84

Jackrabbit @84
I repeated what I'd been told so can only conjecture that someone called the police or other security services.

Posted by: Mr Toad | Aug 10 2016 23:53 utc | 85

According to AMN the Russians have identified a concentration of 7000 takfiris massed for attack on Aleppo.

South Front speculates on massive operations against takfiris by Russian forces ... and asserts that the takfiris are all in for the mother of all wars due to 'a threat of cessation of support through the Turkish border after August 9 meeting between Vladimir Putin and Recep Erdogan'.

So Russia destroys the takfiris and the supplies they have amassed ... and then we see if the Sultan really does close the border, or if Ground Hog's Day recurs and keeps recurring in Syria.

How much death, devastation, destruction and deceit amounts to death, devastation, destruction and deceit? Looks like nothing but more DDD&D to me.

The Ukrainian regime seems to be waiting in the wings for the signal as well.

Our USA is ultimately responsible for all of it. Pox Americana.

Posted by: jfl | Aug 11 2016 0:25 utc | 86

Probably the CIA wants to destabilize Turkey in order to create Kurdistan. Iraq first, then Syria and now it's your turn Erdo.

Russia can help with some battles against rebels but problem is that Russia is unable to ensure victory.

Posted by: raining | Aug 11 2016 4:54 utc | 87

good read..


Posted by: james | Aug 11 2016 5:28 utc | 88

smoothie's post from yesterday - further confirmation on helmers view/s..

Posted by: james | Aug 11 2016 5:35 utc | 89

@88 james

I had the idea that nothing really happened at the Erdogan/Putin meeting but according to Helmer Erdogan rubbed Putin's nose in the 'big change' in relations between the two nations and the reset of the sides in the Middle East, Caucasus, and the 'Stans. The Tass interview had to suffice in lieu of substance from the meeting itself.

I don't know which side Helmer is on, I don't follow him. He's a British spook? I know you seem to follow him.

I'm down to watching what happens. The words are getting more and more out of hand. I view Erdogan as a man of limitless ambition and unlimited scruples to match. Putin is tireless and will talk to anyone in a position to help him undo the damage done to Russia by US/NATO and to help him enhance the future of Russia. Good luck to Putin. I don't think Erdogan is going to be helpful to anyone.

Posted by: jfl | Aug 11 2016 7:56 utc | 90

Posted by: james | Aug 11, 2016 1:35:29 AM | 89

That depends on Erdogan and if he let's realpolitik win over ideology.
He might because he his cornered by "the West". Obviously, Putin is not going to give anything before he gets anything.

This here is the view from Turkey

Çavuşoğlu also underlined that Turkey’s reconciliation with Russia should not be read as a message to the West. “We are doing it for our interests, for regional interests. We are actually issuing our messages to the West in a clear way,” he said.

“Many of them [European countries] have shown whether they are our true friends or not after the coup attempt. The future of our ties with the EU and Western countries will not have an effect on our future ties with Russia. Or vice versa,” he said.

Çavuşoğlu said Turkey had been facing political obstacles from the EU over the last 15 years. “If the West loses Turkey one day, it will not be because of Turkey’s good ties with Russia, China, Central Asian or Islamic countries but because of [the West’s] mistakes.”

Erdogan started with a "no problems with neighbours" policy. His constituency are business people. He was coopted by Obama for his Middle East Muslim Brotherhood strategy. That strategy was dead with the Egyptian military takeover that was supported by Saudi Arabia and Israel.

Turkey now has to go back to the point they started from. It will cost the CIA their networks to ex Soviet republics and the Caucasus.

Posted by: somebody | Aug 11 2016 8:05 utc | 91

jfl | Aug 11, 2016 3:56:14 AM | 90

Helmer is the longest serving, western journalist, in USSR and Russia.

Posted by: V. Arnold | Aug 11 2016 8:19 utc | 92

@ jfl

You may enjoy this;

Helmer's website.

Posted by: V. Arnold | Aug 11 2016 8:28 utc | 93

Paul Craig Roberts is rightfully disgusted with the blatant propaganda

The Stench of Raw Propaganda

[..] On August 10 Satter told NPR’s audience that Washington’s hope to bring peace to Syria would fail unless Washington understood that the Russian government had no humanitarian feelings and did not care about the loss of human life. What Washington needs to do, said Satter, was to make sure that Putin and his henchmen understood that they would be held accountable as war criminals.

I should be hardened by now, but it never fails to astonish me that agents for the elite are willing to tell the most blatant and transparant lies. Perhaps this is because they know that the media and their fellow bought-and-paid-for “experts” will not challenge them on their statements.[.]

Reuters Got It:

CNN (now dubbed the clinton news network) has been called out over reporting Trump (campaign) had been twice questioned by the SS over his hint to “assassinate Clinton” remarks:

Reuters read PCR:

A federal official on Wednesday said the U.S. Secret Service had not formally spoken with Republican Donald Trump's presidential campaign regarding his suggestion a day earlier that gun rights activists could stop Democratic rival Hillary Clinton from curtailing their access to firearms.

Following Trump's comment at a rally on Tuesday in which he suggested that gun rights activists could stop Clinton from appointing liberal anti-gun justices to the U.S. Supreme Court, a federal official familiar with the matter told Reuters that there had been no formal conversations between the Secret Service and the Trump campaign.

Earlier CNN had reported that there had been multiple conversations between the campaign and the agency.

~ ~ ~ ~
the msm wonders why readership and viewership continues to decline.

Posted by: likklemore | Aug 11 2016 11:04 utc | 94

Trump may don't need to 'assassinate' Clinton...

Physician: Mainstream Media ‘Strangely Silent’ About Hillary Clinton’s Health

Posted by: virgile | Aug 11 2016 13:17 utc | 95

Posted by: virgile | Aug 11, 2016 9:17:55 AM | 95

nor Clinton Trump - he is 70, she is 69.

I don't know what it is about the American political system that favours old people.

Posted by: somebody | Aug 11 2016 14:13 utc | 96

Turkey offers Russia joint operations against ISIS

The Turkish regime offered the Kremlin on Thursday, a chance to conduct joint military operations against the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS) in Syria, the AFP reported this afternoon.

Joint operation, they work together: Russia bombs ISIS and Turkey bombs the Kurds.

Posted by: jfl | Aug 11 2016 14:53 utc | 97

@97 jfl.

Spot on!!!

Posted by: Jean | Aug 11 2016 15:15 utc | 98

Interview with Chris Woods, an investigative journalist and leader of the Airwars project. Extracts from the interview. The BEST analysis of current wars in Iraq and Syria I've seen/heard.

First out of context quote: Turkey is involved in the siege of Mosul. We keep hearing that the Turks have troops involved in the siege of Mosul, almost nothing being said about this. But Turkey is quite deep inside Mosul we're told, involved in that particular siege.

Interview, at 18:29 states:

[over two year period, coalition airstrikes:] Fourteen thousand airstrikes, fifty-two thousand bombs and missiles. That is an awful lot of air power. It's a complicated war as you know. There's not a conventional enemy as you said, mostly in civilian areas. Raqqa is a very heavily populated Syrian city. Mosul as we've already talked about. Even if there were conventional American ground forces, in Iraq, in Syria, what would they do? How would they capture these cities? It is very, very difficult. You know it's attrition, it's siege, these are forms of war that we haven't really fought since Vietnam. And I'm trying to think even in Vietnam, where there were sieges, the U.S. fought, we maybe have to go back to Korea, since the U.S. has fought this kind of war. It's also having to rely on proxies on the ground and those proxies are challenging at times. As you know in Syria right now we've got the U.S.'s favorite proxies at the moment, and it does change, the favorite proxies right now are the Kurds, whothey call bizarrely, the "Syrian Arabic Coalition". They're neither Syrians nor Arabs, they're mostly Iraqi Kurds. Those proxies are fighting for control of mainly Arab villages, and it's gotten quite messy. You know in Iraq we've got the Iraq Army which is much better now than when it was founded two years ago, one year ago. It's still supported by this really heavy Shia militia, some of whom are little better than death squads. It's not a clean war, not an easy war. Air only, can only deliver so much. What just broke the siege of Aleppo was not air power, it was boots on the ground. On that occasion, Syrian rebels who came in from both sides, air power had almost no effect in the breaking of the siege of Aleppo. Despite a super power being lined up against those rebels, they did it, they broke apart a sad siege. Air power has it's limits in Iraq and Syria as we're finding out...

[Mosul] the Sunny are one-third the population of Iraq, that's a significant number of people. I don't think there is any interest for the Shia to occupy what we call the Sunni-triangle. Mosul is a really contentious case as you know because it is a three-way split between the Shia, the Sunni and the Kurds. And as part of that great Kurdish nation-building effort to build Kurdistan, they've always had their eyes on Mosul. But I think one of the things the coalition and the Iraqi government has been really careful about is bringing up Iraqi forces from the south. And also by the way, Turkey is involved in the siege of Mosul. We keep hearing that the Turks have troops involved in the siege of Mosul, almost nothing being said about this. But Turkey is quite deep inside Mosul we're told, involved in that particular siege. It's like the most complicated version of 3-D Chess you can imagine...

That 3-D Chess is just for Iraq, the moment you move to Syria, not only is it 3-D Chess, but in Syria everyone involved is playing a different game, using different rules. Who knows? Is it a five-way war in Syria at the moment, a six-way war, it's hard to tell...

I would say that the situation in Syria is worse than anything we've ever saw in Iraq. Because big chunks of Iraq did stay peaceful. Much of Syria is just gone. Millions and millions and millions of people have been displaced, hundreds of thousands dead, entire generations traumatized. I covered Iraq a lot, every year, 2003 to 2009. You just didn't get that, where the destruction was, was very partial, and very limited. Except for Fallujah, Fallujah was the big standout. Really you just didn't see these cities, partially because, you have to remember that the Sadam Regime, whatever we think of that war, the Sadam Regime collapsed very quickly. Most towns and cities in Iraq gave up without a fight. And that meant that you just didn't get this whole-sale destruction. And then when the insurgency kicked in, in 2004, it wasn't this kind of civil war scenario. The destruction in parts of Syria is absolute. The impact on the country and its infrastructure is catastrophic. Iraq was dismantled and destroyed in this way...

The other thing is that civic society in Iraq kept going during the occupation, and during the civil war.

Posted by: Kim Sky | Aug 11 2016 15:40 utc | 99

The 'Russia' effect on Turkey is starting to show.

Ankara OK with Syrian leadership role

Posted by: virgile | Aug 11 2016 15:44 utc | 100

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