Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
September 17, 2016

U.S., Israel Launch Airstrikes On Syrian Government Forces - Directly Supporting ISIS And Al-Qaeda

The U.S.

  • refuses to publish the details of the agreement with Russia about the ceasefire  in Syria
  • has done nothing over the last days to separate, as promised, the "moderate rebels" it supports in Syria from al-Qaeda
  • today bombed a Syrian army position in support of an Islamic State attack in Deir Ezzor.

Details of the last attack:

"Today at 17:00-17:50 Moscow time, international anti-Daesh coalition (two F-16 and two A-10 jets) carried out four strikes on Syrian government forces' units encirled by Daesh near Deir ez-Zor airport. The coalition's aircraft entered Syrian airspace from the side of the Iraqi border," Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said.
As a result of the attack, 62 Syrian soldiers were killed and some 100 others were injured, according to information received from the Syrian command in Deir ez-Zor, he said.

The Russian Defense Ministry said that Daesh terrorists launched an offensive soon after the US-led coalition aircraft attacked the Syrian government forces.

The death toll is likely to increase.

Earlier today the Syrian Arab Army had announced that 1,000 fresh soldiers arrived in Deir Ezzor to liberate it from ISIS.

The U.S. planes came from Erbil in the Kurdish separatist region of Iraq.

The Syrian troops were holding positions on Jabal Tharda, a mountain that overlooks Deir Ezzor's airport. The mountain is now fully under Islamic State control. With this IS has firecontrol over the airport and the Deir Ezzor garrison as well as more than 150,000 civilians living under government protection are thereby cut off from supplies and any further reinforcements. Government forces have launched a counterattack to regain the vital position.

At the same time the Israeli air force attacked Syrian positions in the Golan height after al-Qaeda lobbed a mortar towards Israeli forces signaling the need for support. This has become the official format of Israeli support for al-Qaeda in the area with Israel claiming that the Syrian army is responsible for any and all attacks from the Syrian side no matter who initiates them.

Intense attacks from inside the surrounded, al-Qaeda occupied east-Aleppo on Syrian government positions were launched in the late afternoon local time. Fighting there is ongoing.

Earlier today artillery fire from Turkey hit Syrian army positions in Latakia.

The U.S. air attack on Deir Ezzor was certainly not a mistake but well planed.

It is a signal to Russia and Syria. I am not sure though what lunacy it is supposed to convey.

Posted by b on September 17, 2016 at 18:43 UTC | Permalink

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And for non-US readers, I'll point out one more troubling detail that explains Powers (and the rest of the neocon rodents) reactions as of late: the U.S. is on its way to reinstating the military draft in the next year. People closer to the D.C. cesspool know this know better than me, but we are at the stage of 'floating the idea' to the American public and managing the narrative to soothe and sway public opinion, i.e., hiring PR firms to sell the idea. It will be rammed down the little people's throats in any case. They are trying to ease the draft into the next National Defense Authorization Act, while cautiously explaining how they're absolutely, definitely, positively not trying to reinstate the draft. Honest!

It is imperative that the U.S. maintains the appearance of the moral high ground during its hegemonic reign. If we don't, then the U.S. little people will NOT want to join the military to be a hero and spread the U.S. gifts of liberty and freedom to the world. AIPAC thinks this is a good idea, too. Who can argue with them in D.C.?

When the neocon psychopaths begin to lose control of the big lie of "U.S.A. as champion of everything good" narrative, they go ballistic. Just look at the last couple of years and tell me I'm wrong. You can throw rocks at a psychopath all day long - they're too big and powerful to care. But lift the curtain and expose the Great and Powerful Oz as nothing more than a group of demented little psychopathic freaks pulling levers for their own ends? Intolerable! Who would want to join THEIR military? Obey the narrative, peons! Die for the Oz!

I'm not sure how dire the current recruiting situation is, but the neocons obviously don't care to have the little people have a choice. If push comes to shove and they can't get draft laws passed, then you can be sure we'll see another weapons-of-mass-destruction false flag to rouse the rabble. Samantha Powers and her species want war, and war we will have. Syria is just the warm-up.

The U.S. will be involved in a major war within the next year requiring a greatly expanded military. My guess as always: Israel's Iran.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Sep 18 2016 17:30 utc | 201

Fast Fred, I agree. I'm not supporting Biden in any way, I'm just saying that given gormless Democrats on the street, Biden is 50x more electable than Hil. Most of 'em wouldn't know a zionist from nihilist, assuming there is a difference.

The zionist, neo-lib powers now in control of the Democrats simply cannot afford to risk running Hil in a race in which she is not 10 points ahead of the Duck. I think everybody agrees that Biden would be a much more controllable prez than the Duck. The whole zionist/Ukraine thing is evidence of that.

Posted by: Denis | Sep 18 2016 17:30 utc | 202

@201 If Biden runs it would force Trump to start talking about Ukraine, Golan, ISIS. Aid to Israel etc..

Heck we might even find out where he stands on major international issues.

Posted by: dh | Sep 18 2016 17:40 utc | 203

@PavewayIV 201

I think just the opposite about the draft. With no draft, the country as a whole doesn't have skin in the game, thus no strong opinions about the latest wa .... errr .... military operation.

Re-institute the draft and suddenly everyone's paying attention. Not good considering our current and planned shenannigans. Better to just have a volunteer force supplemented with private contractors.

That's not to say I couldn't imagine the draft returning. I just don't think it likely without a 'clear and present danger' that the existing paradigm wouldn't suffice to handle.

Posted by: woogs | Sep 18 2016 18:01 utc | 204

PavewayIV....If the war is Iran,....Russia will enable Iran to really bust Israel and US in the teeth.

Americans woke up to read about Japanese Long Lance Torpedoes blowing the bows off USN Cruisers and sinking them along with destroyer escorts on several Collision night actions.

Iran is going to land 20% hits on USN.

Like Israel finally getting its Holy Power broken in 2006
Lebanon as Merkavas brew up....the war is just and god is with us crap falls away.

America has wrought so much misery on the world since Vietnam.
Karma day could be just around the corner.

Posted by: Brad | Sep 18 2016 18:01 utc | 205

Re: Hillary' possible exit from the race.

After she was pulled into the van on 9/11, I wrote here (at MoA) that it seemed set-up and that the issue of her health seemed bogus. It all seems designed to provide an option for running a stronger candidate (if necessary).

My reasoning was the same: the nation would be relieved that they could vote for someone that is NOT Hilary or Trump.

I think the Democratic candidate could well be Kaine. He is a Hillary-Obama centrist clone that supports Obamatrade and 'no-fly' zones. Also, it doesn't make logical sense to dump 68-year old Hillary for 74-year old Biden. Kaine is 58.

Maybe Warren would be his running mate?

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Sep 18 2016 18:09 utc | 206

can't the bombing be part of an answer to the leaked video showing FSA in al-Rai kicking out not solely "US special forces" but Syrians working for them, calling them "umala", i.e. "traitors"
some ppl in the US gov believe this will get them FSA confidence again? they have been through this script before, in every country they launched war, isn't it?

Posted by: Mina | Sep 18 2016 18:15 utc | 207

Looks to me like an attempt by Pentagramagon to initiate a Gulf of Tonkin II incident. Remember, North Vietnam's nonexistent Navy attacked USS Maddox. What I do not understand is why Russia has not published the text of the latest agreement?

Causes belli = $6.5 trillion missing

Where is Country Joe and the Fish when we need them

Well, come on all of you, big strong men,
Uncle Sam needs your help again.
He's got himself in a terrible jam
Way down yonder in Vietnam
So put down your books and pick up a gun,
We're gonna have a whole lotta fun.

And it's one, two, three,
What are we fighting for?
Don't ask me, I don't give a damn,
Next stop is Vietnam;
And it's five, six, seven,
Open up the pearly gates,
Well there ain't no time to wonder why,
Whoopee! we're all gonna die.

Please substitute Syria/Iran for Vietnam

Posted by: ALberto | Sep 18 2016 18:30 utc | 208

Similar intentional attacks happened before on:
October 2015 on the Kunduz MSF hospital in Afghanistan
December 2015 on Iran aligned militias that were attacking ISIS occupied Fallujah (
December 2015 on Deir Ezzor itself as it's not the first time (
Calling these attacks "accidents" is an insult on intelligence and any person peddling that idea is either a moron or a liar.

Although the majority of the sheeple in the West are too ignorant and will conveniently believe the it-was-an-accident-stories even though it will increase the flow of refugees which in turn will shift public opinion further to the right, it will be more difficult for stooges like Haider al-Abadi to look the other way thus consolidating the views and strategy of the actors within the resistance axis against the US. Now that election time is over in Russia, it's hands are free again and the need for phony cease fires is over. Although difficult to achieve both militarily and diplomatically, the primary requirement would be to have the Syrian airspace free again from it's uninvited guests.

Posted by: hog | Sep 18 2016 18:33 utc | 209

Appealing to the UN which is under effevtive control of the evil US Empire is such a pathetically weak move which exposes Russian political weakness.

The Turks slaughtered Russian soldiers, and now the US murders Syrian soldiers, but Russia goes to the UN to complain?
The evil US Empire must be laughing its arse off. If that is the level of Empire resistance, then we should all surrender now.

There is no multipolar world without serious military defence.
Russia should've put his foot down early on in Syria instead of letting it get to this stage, but inviting humanities greatest enemy into Syria is a disaster that cowards still refuse to let knowledge.

Posted by: tom | Sep 18 2016 18:35 utc | 210

Mona -- Everything in Syria was going to hell in a handbasket for the Americans ... we were unable to "keep our end of the bargain" with the COH, we were throwing the Kurds under the bus (again -- and Biden/McCain are their champions) and -- worst of all -- the COH was holding ... We've already been "embarassed" by Minsk (which we refused to participate in because it was pointless) is going into a second effective year.

The administration is giving Putin and Syria "a cold shoulder" while the EU and Turkey are shaking themselves out. Merkel's welcoming of the migrants is being hailed as the political mistake of the modern era -- with little concern about the moral crisis (and likely humanitarian disaster) that would have occurred if she had decided it was possible to do otherwise. (I'm pretty sure she did the over/under). But the Brits and the Americans have adopted a Reagen/Thatcher-like steely-resolve to practice Scrooge-like "realpolitiks." Americans, Democrats did not learn anything from the Brexit success. I still see people anticipating a re-vote, because they stopped listening 2 days after the vote. Other folks are certain that the negatives of Brexit were vastly inflated because things have stabilized ... apparently not recognizing that article 50 has not yet been triggered meaning that it's more than 2 years before d-day. (some hail-mary pass may eventuate, but I'm not seeing anyone willing to propose one).

The silence of the Saudis continues ... I fear the Administration's "silence" is one of defeat to the ultra-warmongers and the Clinton wing. Syria is likely to be relegated to backburner status, American machinations to out-of-camera range. Mosul will be "liberated" and everything will be same-old,same-old incremental progress.

About replacing Clinton, Americans do not understand that Biden is a uber-hawk as well -- but they will learn ... regardless he's o.l.d. (3 years older than Clinton) and he's a gaffe-prone joker. I think the DNC will never let Clinton be replaced or that there is a large enough anti-Clinton momentum for this to be more than a pipedream -- of the Republicans or the Sanders campaign .. not.gonna.happen. (I see Russ Feingold has returned to the fray and I'm guessing some other liberal types who vanished into the woodwork during the Obama years -- with his army of bots -- may well re-engage. Too little too late -- Like Bill Clinton, the damage Obama has wrought will not be fixed in a cycle or two -- the question of "what do the democrats stand for?" is no better answered now 16 years after B.C. -- it's a dead parrot)

It will be Clinton v. Trump on election day. I suspect that the DNC is betting that a rise in world tensions and terrorist acts will make Americans hold their nose and vote for Clinton ... In fact, if you look at the electoral college projections, much of this "tightening race" noise is manufactured for eyeballs and to keep folks from staying home on election day. Regardless of the electoral college, Clinton's perceived mandate will be marginal and her "legitimacy" will be challenged throughout her presidency.

Too many tea leaves, not enough news.

Posted by: Susan Sunflower | Sep 18 2016 18:38 utc | 211

MSM transcription services:

Barrel bombing Aleppo "residential areas"!
Underscoring Samantha Powers arguments last night.

Axis of Evil! (here we go again ...)
Iran-Russia working together. Be afraid ... be very afraid.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Sep 18 2016 18:40 utc | 212

@Denis | Sep 18, 2016 1:30:49 PM | 202

Elizabeth Warren & Bernie are Zionist, Jill Stein a Jew will stops all aid to Israel, "Would Pardon Edward Snowden and Give Him a Job in My Administration"

Watched RT 7/24. Desperate NeoLiberal Thom Hartmann realize Trump will win by a landslide told viewers to vote leftist, moderate and conservative Democrats with threats. NeoCon Larry King praises Hillary continuously while his guest keep on crucifying Hillary..

Posted by: Jack Smith | Sep 18 2016 18:46 utc | 213

@x 186... thanks for the quote... i believe they are correct..

@ 190 noirette.. great post to which i fully agree, which leaves (most of) us with your final comment:

" Imho the answer is quite likely NO. So what happens next?"

Posted by: james | Sep 18 2016 18:54 utc | 214

woogs@204 - "...Better to just have a volunteer force supplemented with private contractors..."

Everyone in the Pentagram would love that, but they can no longer afford it. The army is still able to meet recruitment goals, but the number of deferred enlistment contracts going into FY2017 (Oct. 2016) will be the lowest in seven years. Enlistment bonuses - which use to be the exception for hared-to-fill specialties - have to be offered to over two-thirds of all regular army enlistments today. That's up to $10,000/yr just to sucker unemployed little people to join. And the U.S. Army only enlists 62,000 new soldiers a year. It's way cheaper to force people into the military for our bogus wars - that's the other reason the draft will be reinstated.

The Air Force has just resorted to using contractors as drone pilots because they don't have enough in the ranks and can't recruit anyone for the job - nobody wants it. To make matters worse, they have to offer contractors well over $100,000/yr just to take the job (some speculate much, much more than that). So an AF drone pilot captain with four years of experience making $65,000 in military pay/bonuses is incented to quit for the much more lucrative pay as a contractor rather than stay on to take a $10K/yr bonus.

The all-volunteer force in the U.S. works great if people believe in what their country and the military are doing at the time. Recruiters say enlistment pool sentiment (patriotism) - even in this crappy U.S. economy - is still lower than during Viet Nam. What does that tell you? Either you keep throwing money at recruitment bonuses and pay, or you reinstate the draft. Guess which one the politicians have already chosen?

You can't have a war with Iran if nobody shows up. The neocons will make sure enough U.S. little people show up - even if a the end of a gun barrel. They can't buy their way out of this one with contractors or enlistment bonuses any more. Too expensive.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Sep 18 2016 18:57 utc | 215

What are the prospects of the NYC Chelsea bomb being self-inflicted to drive all the news of the American bombing of the Syrians and the news of the statements at the UN off the front pages and relegated from the TV news?

Two questions -- what terrorist motive for bombing that area; how come no fatalities?

Posted by: chet380 | Sep 18 2016 19:09 utc | 216

@ Jackrabbit 206

Scandals pile on but hIllary isn’t going anywhere. With her last breath (“shovel ready”) she’ll be running to be POTUS.

This cartoon is dead on the mark.

She will not be deterred. First Lady; Senator; now wanting to be President. Why should she occupy the WH for 16 years?
Anyway, 50 days out, it’s too late to float other horses.

A statistician whom I respect pointed out how skewered the polls are in favor of hIllary (and they were caught editing):

Trump is at least 40 points ahead…will win by a landslide. One need not be a Ph.D statistician. Just compare the crowd draw of the two candidates.

MSM’s credibility – whatever little is left – is long buried….will not recover.

~ ~ ~ ~

I have concerns about Trump. John Bolton, his foreign policy advisor and likely SoS, is the other side of Samantha Powers coin. Same scary mindset.

Posted by: likklemore | Sep 18 2016 19:10 utc | 217

Posted by: Mina | Sep 18, 2016 2:15:16 PM | 207

It definitively has got something to do with "moderate rebels" being more willing to fight the Syrian army than ISIS.

It also has something to do with US elections and US politicians being unable to admit they support ISIS/Al Qaeda.

It is very likely though that the US and allies do not wish the Syrian army to gain ground in Deir Ezzor nor Raqqa.

"FSA in al-Rai kicking out not solely "US special forces" but Syrians working for them, calling them "umala", i.e. "traitors"" possibly is connected to Turkey having an understanding with Syria and Russia.

I do wonder why there is no attack on Raqqa yet but the Syrian army seems to be on an offensive in Deir Ezzor.

I also wonder if Turkey's proxies are the same as Saudi's proxies in Syria or not - and whose proxies the US can influence if they should wish to.

Posted by: somebody | Sep 18 2016 19:11 utc | 218

I found out why Raqqa got stuck

Will Turkey go to Raqqa through Rojava?

Since intervening militarily in northwestern Syria three weeks ago, Turkey has been targeting both ISIS and Syrian Kurdish forces on the west bank of the Euphrates River. Given Raqqa’s location eastward of that river, and southward of Syria’s northeastern PYD-controlled border, could the Turkish military possibly help capture Raqqa without rolling through Rojava (Syrian Kurdistan)?

Robert Lowe is deputy director of the Middle East Centre at the London School of Economics where his main research interest is in Kurdish movements in Syria. He told Rudaw English that Turkey could choose this course of action, but warned of its likely consequences.

“Turkey could choose to push deeper into Syrian territory to try to wipe out both ISIS and the Rojava project, but it would be massively risky,” Lowe said.

“If the Turks decide to destroy Rojava they will likely face a difficult and drawn out struggle against the [Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units] YPG and the [Kurdistan Workers Party] PKK inside Syria and an escalation of the conflict with the PKK inside Turkey,” he explained.

Such an intervention, he added, could see Turkey embroiled in a lengthy conflict on foreign soil which would “probably cause large scale displacement of the population of northern Syria.”

“Such an operation would attract international condemnation because, while the removal of ISIS would be welcomed, there is a feeling that the PYD needs to be restrained rather than wiped out. I think the US would oppose Turkey marching through Rojava to attack Raqqa,” Lowe explained.

“Good luck to the US if they’re trying to persuade Turkey and the YPG to stop confronting each other,” Lowe went on to remark.

So the only force now able and willing to "free" Raqqa on the ground is the Syrian army advancing via Deir Ezzor with the help of Russian airstrikes.

Posted by: somebody | Sep 18 2016 19:22 utc | 219

By the way, what is Boris Johnson up to?

Amal Clooney and Boris Johnson to launch anti-Isis campaign

The plan follows Mrs Clooney's damning speech to the UN over failure to stop Isis 'genocide'

Posted by: somebody | Sep 18 2016 19:32 utc | 220

Samantha Powers incredibly arrogant remarks at the UN last night appear improvised as she forgot to mention Assad's rape rooms and his propensity to abuse kittens. Though children "eating leaves" was a new one. However, she spoke of opposition groups who "want to be part of a political transition, who want a multi-confessional and pluralistic society" and who have signed onto the CoH. Who are these groups? Surely Powers wouldn't be misleading.

Posted by: jayc | Sep 18 2016 19:38 utc | 221

Australia’s Defense Department have admitted that its jets have participated in an airstrike against Syrian Army positions near Deir Ezzor that left tens dead.

Australia has offered its condolences to the victims of the soldiers families and has announced it will fully cooperate in the review of the incident.

Posted by: ALberto | Sep 18 2016 19:41 utc | 222

Funny how Australia was 'in' on the bombing run. USA always has UK or France or Canada or Australia providing fig-leaf coalitions

Posted by: bbbb | Sep 18 2016 20:40 utc | 223

Oh the irony.

U.S. military commanders are 'pissed off' about the mission creep in Syria

“We have to separate Nusra into two categories. The ideological people who came from Afghanistan, the jihadis. Those people are crazy. They are a threat to the whole of humanity,” Barabandi said. “But then we have the majority of the people who are not so much affiliated with this ideology. They are affiliated with this group because of a lack of alternatives and because al Nusra has been successful in fighting the regime.

“If you target them, that will mean you are killing thousands of Syrians.”

Harrigian, the Air Force general overseeing the air campaign in Syria, said the American commitment to avoiding civilian casualties will remain intact regardless of any military cooperation with Russia.

“Our process won't change," he said. "We are going to continue to execute with precision; ensure that as we develop targets, we fully understand them.”

Posted by: somebody | Sep 18 2016 20:58 utc | 224

Fastfreddy @196

my clarified post from days ago:

Biden? Joe Biden? You mean The Senator From Dupont?

Do you think it mere coincidence that the Bidens' "luck" rose as Dupont's nightmare of Teflon-contamination was exposed after decades of cover-up? Check-out the Dupont pandemic PFOA scandal. Or you can just wait until it comes to you.

IMO, there has been huge and long term push, quietly orchestrated, to get Biden into position to snuff bad consequences from Dupont's hellacious tyranny. PFOA was and is a significant, long-term health hazard whose effects are without remedy; can only be mitigated.

PFOA = PerFluoroOctanoicAcid

Posted by: chu teh | Sep 18 2016 21:06 utc | 225

USA always has UK or France or Canada or Australia providing fig-leaf coalitions

Posted by: bbbb | Sep 18, 2016 4:40:50 PM | 223

Australia is a bit special. E.g. they reliably supplied troops during the Vietnam war. I can see two reasons. One, Australia is relatively isolated and very populous and culturally, very different, Indonesia is their "neighbor", so Australians feel that they badly need American alliance. Second, at least according to some cinematography, it is damn boring down there. You can kill as many kangaroos as you want, and down as many beers as you want, but that does not give you variety. (I guess I remember a particularly pessimistic Australian movie.)

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Sep 18 2016 21:17 utc | 226

Having no good options at the moment, Putin is bidding his time till the US elections…perhaps he thinks a Trump presidency will mean a more agreeable US foreign policy in Syria.

Posted by: s | Sep 18 2016 21:19 utc | 227

206;Your delusion continues.The people of the USA want Trump.

Posted by: dahoit | Sep 18 2016 21:21 utc | 228

the aussie sas
the kiwi sas
the canuck
all queens men
for elizabeth and her rabbi.
what is the sas a private army set up by david sterling
sas hit and run
the sas is one of many spear tips.
hit and run
the donmeh jewish house of saud would not exist without the original protection of the sas
then we have frank kidson doctrine gangs counter gangs and pseudo gangs low intensity military operations
to exhaustion.
let us not forget the tavistock mind psy operations
yes sir the the brits really built the masonic structures joined by partners today israhell and usa usa.
the empire of the city of london tel aviv washington and new york the many bellies of this satanick beast.
aussie always complied
kiwi tried to break away years ago
anybody remember the christchurch new zealand earthquake.
a correction a country corrected.
like the dancing israli of 911 who heard of the mossad agents arrested in christchurch
and quietly as usual shipped home

jfk talked of earth quake weapons 53 years ago but they cannot exist because the bbc never made the documentary.
canuck,aussie,kiwi do what they are told or they get mossad kidron spanked

Posted by: cdrake | Sep 18 2016 21:23 utc | 229

PavewayIV @215

An all volunteer army means that the most politically influential segments of the American population (wealthier, more educated) are unconcerned/less concerned with foreign affairs.

TPTB benefit greatly from having such a 'free hand' in foreign affairs.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Sep 18 2016 21:48 utc | 230

206;Your delusion continues.The people of the USA want Trump.

Posted by: dahoit | Sep 18, 2016 5:21:14 PM | 228

I truly love such simple statements. Striking nail on the head, or driving a nail into the head (sorry, I am lazy to check which one applies here). An entity named "the people of the USA", is given the gift of free will, and wants Trump. Perhaps as a part of "pursuit of happiness" because he is so amusing. Without the help of post 228 I would naively think that in the territory of USA we have persons with diverse opinions. Some like bellowing walruses (John Bolton is the prime example), and when no walrus-American runs for President, they would like to vote for the candidate who (a) expressed highest regard for John Bolton, (b) bellows almost as well as Bolton himself. But do walruses, or jack rabbits, count among "the people"? Additionally, some inhabitants of USA care very little for bellowing, so how their preferences relate to the "will of the people"?


Posted by: Piotr Berman | Sep 18 2016 22:00 utc | 231


As usual, you provide some good examples to flesh out your pov. Some I do agree with and some I believe the converse is true.

I do know what you mean about bonuses paid, enlistment incentives, etc. My oldest son is in the Air Force reserve and received a $15,000 bonus for re-enlistment as a weekend warrior. He does the basically same thing at his day job as in the reserve (works for a gov't contractor) and pulls in 100k+ a year.

A draft, however, isn't going to make all staffing problems go away unless standards are lowered and most deferrments eliminated. Then you're back to 1960's America with draft protests (Hell no .. we won't go!!!) and everyone scrutinizing American policy.

I just don't see a draft on the horizon unless, as I said, a clear and present danger occurs that induces a nationwide rally around the flag reflex. I'm not sure it could happen even then. But, never say never, eh?

Posted by: woogs | Sep 18 2016 22:04 utc | 232

#13 Paul

The S-300 are nowhere near Deir Az Zor. The S-400 operated by Russians for Russia, and using them to retaliate at USAF would be the start of the WWIII.

The reason USAF attacked the Monastery is precisely that the Syrian air defenses there are weak (probably little more than manpads is available), the place is still cut off and has a very high areal resupply cost, and the entire force at the Deir is small enough to be potentially overwhelmable by the newly freed up resources of the DAESH/NATO.

In my opinion, the only solution to this is to progress with a full scale, division size or greater offensive from Palmyra through the Deir to break the siege and enable inexpensive ground resupply, as well as create the critical mass to progress to the Iraqi border and liberate a direct land route to the Allies out east (Iraq, Iran).

Posted by: Quadriad | Sep 18 2016 22:11 utc | 233


Very succinctly put. Besides, do we really need cannon fodder in this day and age? If the need arises, we have coalition partners for that.

Posted by: woogs | Sep 18 2016 22:12 utc | 234


All accounts I've read state that it was 4 planes in the attack; 2 f-16 & 2 a-10.

The f-16s could have been piloted by Australians, but the a-10 is flown exclusively by the USAF (according to wiki).

The a-10 carries more armaments than the f-16 and is also used as airborne fac. So where is the lion's share of the responsibility?

Posted by: woogs | Sep 18 2016 22:22 utc | 235

68 jfl

In full agreement. Too many crocodile tears shed over the suffering of poor SAA and the powerlessness or even treachery of the R Federation, Iran, who not. As if WW3 and the future of planet Earth weren't at stake, not just of Syria.

Most of the defeatism here at MoA reeks of absolute rubbish imo. Cheap and transparent HasbarISISms. Morale busters.

And othing a few dozen Iskanders followed by several MIRVs can't resolve for the next 1000+ years.

(finally, does anyone really think that the Kraut Dolphins will really work as planned and reliably exact revenge when the Samson's minute comes? Do you really trust the enduring German love for Jews that much? If they are there just for revenge, then please ask yourselves, whose revenge will it be, revenge of the Ivrim or revenge of the Reich??)

Posted by: Quadriad | Sep 18 2016 22:42 utc | 236

dahoit @228

Maybe so. But if Trump threatens the interests of Democratic/establishment power brokers (as many believe) and he looks likely to win, then it seems very possible that extraordinary efforts will be made to defeat him.

At this moment, possible "extraordinary efforts" look to be:

>> Rig the election (already started with biased polling);

>> Nullify the results (Russian hackers!);

>> Reveal 'dirt' on Trump (tax returns?);

>> Candidate voluntarily exits - due to health or other issue (either Trump or Hillary);

>> October surprise: National/International crisis makes Trump look weak/incompetent and Hillary look Presidential.

Some of these are unlikely. IMO Hillary's health has been made an issue because the glimpse of her shoe as she was put into the van and the "It's a beautiful day in New York" afterward, seem so set-up.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Sep 18 2016 22:46 utc | 237

bbbb @ 223

"USA always has UK or France or Canada or Australia providing fig-leaf coalitions"

It is a Coalition of the Killing. Makes it all neater, nicer and gentler does it not?

Posted by: ALberto | Sep 18 2016 22:47 utc | 238

ALberto@222, woogs@235 - The overall Australian reaction is rather odd since they have no F-16s or A-10s. (woogs: Aussie all F-18s AFIK). Some have suggested the single KC-30 Aussie tanker (unneeded) or E-7A AWACS (useless for this mission).

That leaves their drones. I wonder if the Aussies either rolled out some of their brand new MQ-9 Reaper drones for Operation Inherent Regret or crewed the Reaper involved in the Deir EzZor massacre. They already had at least a couple of Reaper crews (pilot and sensor operator) flying real missions out of the 432nd drone operations wing at Creech AFB, NM for training.

The suspected ISIS tank and APCs or whatever were supposedly under surveillance for a couple of days before the CENTCOM boys decided to blow them away. That would look especially bad for Australia if they were crewing their own drones and screwed up ten minutes before the ISIS attack.

Australia just got ripped off by the U.S. for $300M for eight Reapers last year. It needs them because of the constant threat to Australia from... well, somebody dangerous that needs to be reaped (other than Australian taxpayers).

Not surprisingly, I can't find a definitive word either way in the Aussie press. I'll have to say that the U.S. Goebbels-like control of our press is easily topped by Australia. The Australian MSM would make the old Pravda grey-beards blush. I have to believe the average Aussie doesn't give a damn because they mostly ignore the Aussie press.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Sep 18 2016 22:51 utc | 239

Australian jets involved in botched air strike on Syrian Army

Posted by: Mischi | Sep 18 2016 22:55 utc | 240

Many diversions draw attention away from the US attack on Syrian Airport under CoH negotiated by USA at the insistence of the USA with secret provisions.

The Chelsea NYC kitchen utensil explosion (we've seen these pressure cookers before).
With a twist: Say it might not be a terror event. Keep the proles off balance. Dominate the "news" with event.

The Minnesota Mall Knifing event by the de rigueur Muslim extremist.

Shift the blame to "coalition partner" Australia.

Note that the majority of US Americans could not find Syria on a map or give a damn about it.

Lesson of Viet Nam - don't show it on the 6 o'clock news.

Posted by: fast freddy | Sep 18 2016 23:01 utc | 241

PavewayIV @239

I have found Global Research to be a competent disseminator of information.

A Google search led me to this

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull says he won't speculate about what went wrong after an air strike involving Australian planes kills nearly 100 Syrian soldiers who had been fighting Islamic State.

source -

Looks like the Pentagramagon/CIA brain trust realize that they have f*#ked it all up again. Those guys did it! Honest! Believe us please. Have we ever lied to you?

Posted by: ALberto | Sep 18 2016 23:03 utc | 242

Sunday September 18, 2016 You cannot make this stuff up

"As soon as the coalition were advised that there were Syrian government personnel that had been affected by the strike, the operation was discontinued," Mr Turnbull told reporters in New York, echoing the earlier Defence statement.

Turnbill in New York. NYC where The Donald, Clintons, The Bern, Boris Johnson, etc., et all are from.

Oh that Boris - Boris Johnson is to renounce his US citizenship, removing a potential obstacle to him becoming British prime minister. The London mayor has dual nationality because he was born in New York – but has now revealed that he wants to hand back his American passport.

Posted by: ALberto | Sep 18 2016 23:11 utc | 243

Posted by: ALberto | Sep 18, 2016 7:11:45 PM | 243

The Syrian government says the planes stopped when ISIS joined the attack (meaning there was a danger ISIS could get hit) :-))

Same "discontinuation" different explanation why.

Posted by: somebody | Sep 18 2016 23:27 utc | 244

#95 Kuma

In total agreement. A lot of people perceive that there's an absolute boatload of "baddies" out there compared to the very few, if any, good guys, and to simplify the things for themselves they try and lump all the "bad guys" together. Putting a grand conspiracy around them all, to simply lump them all together and give them one anthropomorphic, demonic body is the next step in this line of thought.

To quote Tolkien on this:

"One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them,
One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them
In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie."

Replace the metaphorical "Ring" with "Grand Conspiracy" and you get exactly the outcome that the theorists kind of hope for. The ultimate external source of all human evil, if you will.

Too bad hoping that all human evil is ever united and well coordinated is simply wishful thinking.

I am a pessimist and believe in very problematic human nature and base drives, where a whole lot of highly motivated power hungry people don't need much organization or motivation to do bad deeds and that they are perfectly capable and willing to go about their nasty business ad hoc and as soon as the moment feels right.

The one positive offshoot of this is that all such evil is organic, selfish, local and pretty short sighted. So, perhaps the attack on the SAA near the Deir was simply a reflex response of someone within the USAF who listens to the commands from Tel Aviv over and above those from Washington DC. An isolated SAA outpost at Deir Az Zor looked vulnerable, there was an opportunity to help the placeholder ISIS seize it (until the main force of the FSAALQAIDANATO liberate it all), with the ultimate price being the fall of the Deir and with it the last piece of puzzle for the South-North Oil/Gas corridor.

If so, perhaps the end of the latest peace agreement was just a side-benefit, not the primary objective.

Posted by: Quadriad | Sep 18 2016 23:38 utc | 245


Thanks for that. This whole 'Australian angle' seems like a rather useless diversion. Wondering why seems equally useless.

I'm curious how/if Obama addresses this whole episode in his legacy speech at the UN General Assembly on Tuesday. He doesn't have to worry about rebuttal as Putin reportedly will not attend.

Posted by: woogs | Sep 18 2016 23:44 utc | 246

@241 ff

Good observations all. I especially enjoyed ... the Chelsea bomb was intentional - but it was not terrorism. I guess that means the FBI set it off themselves?

On the draft ...

The class divide in the USA seems now between those making 100k+ working for the Wehrmacht and those making little to nothing, their jobs having been exported to raise the profit margins of those running the war.

The Wehrmacht was made 'voluntary' to allow its reconstruction after its self-destruction during what the Vietnamese correctly term the American War. 'Working' for the Wehrmacht was very popular among those almost good enough to land 100k+ jobs on their own during peacetime, and seen as acceptable to others not so fortunate. Not so much after the reinstatement of war as the option of choice, after the IEDs began to pierce the aura of invincibility.

So now the 100k+ contingent among the Wehrmancht's employees want to reinstate the draft to replenish the cannon fodder contingent. Their buffer. They're database mechanics and gameboys, not cannon fodder, according to their own lights. Maimed or dying is not for them. And you know how it is with wars; like debt, like slavery, they grow like Topsy.

Yeah, reinstating the draft will mean the end of the effectiveness of the Wehrmacht, such as it is, again, a la the American War in SEAsia, but they're in charge now and used to wars that just go on 'forever' ... and its better to liguidate those cannon fodder types 'over there' than 'over here', anyway, better than to kill them at home by cop, for as long as 'forever' lasts, for as long as their 'good thing' can be made to endure.

The war of all against all, each atomized component in defense of its own 'good thing', against every other. The disease is terminal, seems to me.

Better to vote 'other', vote no to Clinton, no to Trump, vote no to the menagerie just 50 days from now. A big 'other' total may well make us, the cannon fodder, visible to ourselves, and catalyse, finally, our action, our crystallization, our falling out of solution. We're the only ones ever gonna end the wars.

Posted by: jfl | Sep 18 2016 23:50 utc | 247

My, my.

This post brought out all sorts of arguments! Fascinating?

Yes, the UN is a toothless old fart. But, despite that it is a format for bloviating: Powers? It is also a place where actions vs rhetoric make for some very fascinating sub-contexts. For example, the cracks in the Empire may be related almost directly to the hypocrisy voiced within the UN by the US. Worse, the UN forum is one the US uses when it thinks it will help (the Powell run-up to Iraq?).

Regarding the draft. Man-power? Cannon-fodder? Yes.
But remember mommies don't like to have their kids come home in body bags ... currently with the volunteer force, mommies are silenced because junior DID volunteer. But mommies can make guv'ment suffer when junior didn't want (ie volunteer) to go.
This is especially true if mommies see no upside to their alleged sacrifice.

Finally, the typical American has always supported war. It is in the DNA! Get over it ...

Posted by: rg the lg | Sep 18 2016 23:51 utc | 248

What I cannot understand is, that if the USAF really decided to give close air support to the Syrian Arab Army, why does Samantha Power need to go on a 15 minute rant against Assad, right after she has informed the world of this surprising new development?

Posted by: Petri Krohn | Sep 18 2016 23:57 utc | 249

the road to aleppo is paved with good intentions

Posted by: mcowen | Sep 19 2016 0:05 utc | 250

Relying on Al Masdar News, it seems that Russians expected what will happen. First, the protests against the attack were quite immediate, and they managed to stop it. Second, during the same evening they coordinated a counter-attack on ISIS with the local SAA (perhaps the best units in the country, judging on their record) and the strategic mountain top was regained. One may wonder, how low tech Russians could manage to tell friend from foe?

Perhaps Syrian units are equipped with GPS or a Russian equivalent gadgets, and can communicate their exact coordinates, and those communication are relayed to the air force. Western countries, as far as I know, refuse communication with Syrian and Russian troops except for some most general info to avoid shooting at each other. And it that case they just should stay miles away of zones of engagement of SAA. The most charitable interpretation, and somewhat plausible, is that the general plan was to kill some ISIS fighter, but if there was a significant risk of strifing SAA instead, that was a bonus. In USA, if a private citizen is concerned, this is punishable homicide with "deprived indifference" tag, but for law enforcement, it is a green light to do their worst.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Sep 19 2016 0:10 utc | 251

woogs@246 - "...This whole 'Australian angle' seems like a rather useless diversion. Wondering why seems equally useless..."

True. I just don't recall Australia getting dragged into the sewer along with the U.S. lately - they generally (and wisely so) keep their distance. It's only wishful thinking on my part, but I had secretly hoped someday the Aussies would have had the balls to tell the U.S. to f*#k off with their Mideast pipeline wars.

Not going to happen though. I know how the little people there feel, but the government is linked at the hip with the other five-eyes .gov mafia. They were my last hope after watching Germany - the German government that is - grovel to their U.S. overlords for so long. Maybe the next government in Germany (if it survives as a nation) will be a little less tolerant of the global neighborhood bully: the U.S. (if we survive as a nation).

Posted by: PavewayIV | Sep 19 2016 0:11 utc | 252

What I"ve wondered is if the bodycount was so high because the SAA was operating in the open, believing that all the aircraft in that region -- given the ceasefire -- was only targetting ISIS. Under normal circumstances, would they have conceivably left themselves so vulnerable ... and shouldn't that have been a "clue" that they WEREN'T ISIS?

That is an awful lot of people to simply bomb like fish in a barrel. It's reminiscent of the "coalition" bombing of the convoy of those exiting Fallujah ... which was another "highway of death" except it included ISIS members and their families (and anyone else who happened to be traveling in that convoy) -- If we take the "coalition's" claim that they were all ISIS, they were in retreat with their families ... not that we have any reason to believe the coalition or expect that the identities of those killed were or would be verified.

I never saw an update to the 700-900 Fallujah males who were missing ... or what happened to those thousands of Sunni Fallujan evacuees last seen camped in the desert without much in the way of shelter, water, food, sanitation and forbidden to travel anywhere, much less Baghdad which was an hour's drive away ... No one cared about them either.

Wapo: June 21, 2016: Middle East
‘We are desperate’: Iraqis flee Fallujah, only to find another nightmare

More than 85,000 people have escaped the city [Fallujah] and its surroundings in recent weeks as Iraqi security forces battle to recapture the city from the Islamic State. About 4.4 million people in the country are now internally displaced, one of the highest totals of any country.
Mosul is estimated to have a population of 600,000 (half of prior) and it's next on the list to be "liberated" from ISIS, soon some say.

Posted by: Susan Sunflower | Sep 19 2016 0:29 utc | 253

PavewayIV@252 .... "I just don't recall Australia getting dragged into the sewer along with the U.S. lately - they generally (and wisely so) keep their distance."

Judging from reports, it seems like Australia willingly jumped in on this one. With them not flying any of the mentioned planes in the attack, its role would seem peripheral at most. Curious indeed.

The loyalty of the poodles knows no bounds.

Posted by: woogs | Sep 19 2016 0:32 utc | 254

Wonder if Putin will attend UN general assembly and beat his shoe on the table?

Posted by: ALberto | Sep 19 2016 0:34 utc | 255

Is this reliable? Sputnik cites AMN

US Denial in 3..2..1

Payback? Syrian Armed Forces Reportedly Shoot Down US Spy Drone Over Deir ez-Zor

A US Air Force surveillance aircraft was reportedly downed on Sunday in the province of Deir ez-Zor, where American jets bombed Syrian forces encircled by Daesh militants a day earlier, killing 62 personnel.[.]

The Syrian army also regained control over the vast majority of territories that they lost to Daesh on Saturday, after the US-led coalition gave an upper hand to the extremists in their offensive by shelling positions of Syrian servicemen.
It was also reported that the Syrian Air Force supported by Russian aircraft carried out a series of airstrikes on Deir ez-Zor air base and Daesh-seized areas along the 30 mile-road connecting cities of Deir ez-Zor and Mayadeen.

Posted by: likklemore | Sep 19 2016 0:37 utc | 256

Posted by: jfl | Sep 19 2016 0:39 utc | 257

Russia will use this to set the narrative that the US is aiding ISIS/AlQaida (true). They will follow all the legal channels to make that case and to publicize it. If the US tries this again, it will simply reinforce said narrative and enable Russia to take stronger retaliatory actions.

My humble opinion is this is the wrong way to do things. The US would threaten Russia with nuclear destruction if Russia did this to one of America's allies.

Posted by: Alaric | Sep 19 2016 1:16 utc | 258

follow-up @237:

Another point for this off-topic discussion... (sorry)

One possibility is that the (bogus) illness was meant to play into the alt-right sick-Hillary meme in the hope that Trump would say something crass and hurtful.

Trump didn't take the bait.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Sep 19 2016 1:27 utc | 259

Very troubling that artillery fire came from Turkey to Latakia.

For a number of reasons (most recently because US intelligence operated helos and drones in Hatay) I've been wondering about who is really in control in Hatay province in Turkey. We know that the Iskenderun port has been used for arms smuggling for years now and the CIA has a large base there. Is the province overrun with militants that Turkey has little control over? Is Turkey playing a double game? (Seems like they always do but this would be particularly stupid). Does Erdogan really have control over his military?

There was a NATO conference yesterday in Croatia where the military chiefs met. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, Gen. Dunford, went to Croatia a day early to meet with his Turkish counterpart. So they just met on Friday, FWIW.

Posted by: Joanne Leon | Sep 19 2016 1:40 utc | 260

@ 260, me again:

One more thing about Hatay, and this is just highly speculative and based on a random conversation on Twitter with someone who was very passionate about the Kurdish cantons in Syria and the creation of Rojava. In this conversation, someone told me that the Turkish coup was meant to throw the country into chaos and allow the Kurds to take part of coastal Turkey in the Hatay region so that Rojava would have access to the Mediterranean Sea. Again, this might be just bollocks nonsense, but someone did say this to me last month. If by some stretch, this was true, there would have to be people positioned in Hatay to help carry out the occupation, right?

Posted by: Joanne Leon | Sep 19 2016 1:46 utc | 261

@ Paveway @jfl

Fall guys seems most likely. Not sure what intel Aust has in the area but I would think all intel and targeting info is coming from the US.
Still no excuse though as this is standard stuff for any of the mercenary armies that go off to fight US wars.
Also both in the US war against China and Russia, US needs a client state to take a hit to try and turn opinion against China/Russia and allow US to"rescue" client state.

Posted by: Peter AU | Sep 19 2016 2:09 utc | 262

Is the UN so compromised in favor of Oceania -- like the World Bank and IMF -- that Eurasia must propose another governing body for the world to join?

Countries could continue participating in the UN but also join the new league of nations. But, from Eurasia's perspective, it would be a mistake to allow Oceania into the equivalent of the "security council".

...Same goes for those "courts" in the Hague.

Posted by: dumbass | Sep 19 2016 2:22 utc | 263

Alberto re Country Joe
Well recall that terribly effective line:

Be the first one on your block to have your son come home in a box!

Huge effect on lots of people.

Posted by: chu teh | Sep 19 2016 2:35 utc | 264

Without that crazy UNSCR (20 November 2015) Syria could say: US, get out!

Posted by: From The Hague | Sep 19 2016 2:50 utc | 265

Peter AU@262 - I'm not sure about the fall guy angle, Peter. The U.S. never mentioned any other coalition partners by name. It has only been Australia's ABC (so far) that carried the report of Aussie aircraft participation without being more specific.

I wasn't bringing up the issue as a matter of blame here either. The U.S. owns this whole fiasco 100% no matter who was at the wheel anywhere in the chain. I think the whole world understands that, too. I was just confused/curious what role Australian aircraft could possibly have played here at all given no F-16s nor A-10s in the RAAF.

The Reaper drone involvement (my speculation) would be more of an issue internally (to Australia) given the money you all had to throw away on them. The ABC 'regret' articles were just unexpected and unusual - I hadn't even considered that any other forces were involved. Not that it matters. Like I said, the U.S. owns this 100% - there's not going to be any fall guy except, perhaps, in the microcephalic minds of neocons like Susan Powers and my State Department. Nobody will buy it anyway.

Oddly enough, I just caught a link (h/t to 'james keith' on SyranPerspective) where the Danish Defense Minister Peter Christensen revealed that the two F-16s involved in the attack were from the Danish AF.

From [translated]:

Danish F-16 aircraft participated in error strikes against Syrian military

It is regrettable if Danish aircraft have bombed Syrian soldiers by mistake, said the defense minister.

Two Danish F-16s took part in an attack Saturday in Syria, where it is presumed that the US-led military coalition against the Islamic State struck a Syrian military position by mistake and killed more than 60 Syrian soldiers...

It's regrettable that Danes continue to support the U.S.'s failed Middle East land theft and genocide, but nobody will be blaming the Danes here. Deir EzZor is totally the U.S.'s fault - the alpha monkey doesn't get to point fingers at his accomplices. No Danish F-16s would have been with 4,000 km of Deir EzZor if it wasn't for the U.S. neocon's non-stop efforts to create a river of Shia blood from Damascus to Tehran. Because, you know... pipelines... and freedom.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Sep 19 2016 3:16 utc | 266

Why in the world are the Russians even listening to the Obama administration? it has been common knowledge for ages that the us is supplying and supporting ISIS. the Russians have the advantage there plus they are there with the permission of the Syrian government.They need to start playing hardball and just shut down Syrian airspace to anyone but the Syrian and Russian air forces. They can do this easily with the s400 systems they have there. Stop falling for Obama dirty tricks to buy time for him to resupply his terrorist buddies and blast those ISIS bastards to hell.

Posted by: Andy | Sep 19 2016 4:03 utc | 267

The NYT finally has a followup article which has a curious admission in the second paragraph ... but all in all disappointing, Kerry echoing Power's labeling of the Russian response as "grandstanding" -- (Champion hearts and minds winners, aren't they?)

Doncha love the title: nyt: Airstrike on Syrian Troops Weakens U.S. Effort to Curb Violence.

he United States’ accidental bombing of Syrian troops over the weekend has put it on the defensive, undercutting American efforts to reduce violence in the civil war and open paths for humanitarian relief.

The United States had thought that if a deal to ease hostilities in Syria, struck by Secretary of State John Kerry and his Russian counterpart in Geneva nine days ago, fell apart, it would reveal Russia’s duplicity in the war, in which Moscow has supported the Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad.

Sounds to me like the USA entered into this agreement to set-up Russia to be revealed as a bad actor ..

NYT no longer time stamps articles but this has tomorrows date ... and it's minutes after 1 am EST

Posted by: Susan Sunflower | Sep 19 2016 5:07 utc | 268

The reality for Putin is that he is dealing with a fat, really dumb playground bully that is spoiling for a fight no matter what concessions are offered. His main objective is the protection of his people. It seems that he is weak but strength comes from not responding as to do so plays into the Washington degenerates hands. The Russians use 'reflexive control' which is a multifaceted way of view strategy and tactics.

However, if the nutters attacked Russia the response according to the current Russian military doctrine would be overwhelming. You can see the edge of this 'hard' response re Crimea as the Russian military moved tens of thousands of troops and equipment and went on high alert.

The US is desperate as the economy and financial system is about to collapse.

Posted by: nexusxyz | Sep 19 2016 5:08 utc | 269

Russia should be using Obama's lame duck to end the war, not wasting time on "cessation of hostilities" aka empire delaying and rearming tactics over and over again.

Seriously, what is Putin doing?

Posted by: BiblesNBlowjobs | Sep 19 2016 5:13 utc | 270

Andy@267 - You seem to forget that my country - the U.S. - is run by unpredictable, criminally insane psychopathic bullies. Nuclear-armed unpredictable, criminally-insane psychopathic bullies.

Russia is not as much concerned with controlling the U.S. inside Syria today as it is worried about the U.S. running amok throughout the rest of the world tomorrow. Russia's goal isn't just to defeat the U.S.-created and U.S.-backed rebels today in Syria. It's to defeat them without starting WW III in the process. That makes things a little more complicated.

U.S./Israel and GCC cronies are the ones desperately clinging to the singular goal of Syrian regime change through military victory and puppet replacement government, even if they have to kill every last Syrian to achieve that.

You don't 'play hardball' with an arrogant, well-armed insane state actors. Negotiations, however frustrating and seemingly futile, are still Russia's best approach for now. If Russia can demonstrate to (repeatedly) and convince the rest of the world to recognize the U.S. for what it is and gets the rest of the world to call us on it then the U.S. will pout and leave Syria because nobody loves us anymore. That's the only 'victory' Russia is looking for here regarding Syria because that is the precise outcome that best serves the interests of the Russian people. It would also serve the interests of the Syrian people - at least the ones we haven't killed, maimed or made homeless by now.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Sep 19 2016 5:15 utc | 271

@Andy 267:

It really is amazing how difficult it appears to be to get a single missile complex of some sort out to eastern Syria, isn't it? When the su 24 got shot down, the response was instant. Now that the SAA has hundreds of casualties, not even a single panstir gets loaded off a plane.

Posted by: wwinsti | Sep 19 2016 5:27 utc | 272

#272 Wwinsti

I am not sure how safe the Deir airport is for larger transports, given the DASH manpads and AAA very close around the airport and all. I would not risk bigger cargo birds for such a debatable gain. And you can't airdrop large SAM systems from a great height. In fact, I don't think you can even airdrop larger missiles without serious breakage risks to the guidance systems.

In my opinion, the only real solution to the Deir predicament is to break through from Palmyra with a larger force and reestablish & guard proper land supply corridors. Anything else is just pouring more (expensive) paint over the rotten timber.

Posted by: Quadriad | Sep 19 2016 5:44 utc | 273

Just imagine the fools that are actually surprised by this murderous act by the evil US Empire. Oh wait, Putin was.
Why else would he invite mass murderous genocidal maniac's to be partners in Syria.

Posted by: tom | Sep 19 2016 6:03 utc | 274

@ Andy #267

They need to start playing hardball and just shut down Syrian airspace to anyone but the Syrian and Russian air forces.

You forget the UNSCR I mentioned in #265

Posted by: From The Hague | Sep 19 2016 6:10 utc | 275

@paveway 266

Australia and Netherlands volunteering that they took part in the strike??

Just something to throw something out there. Both Australia and Netherlands were willing to sacrifice their people on MH17 for the greater good of US geo-politics.

Posted by: Peter AU | Sep 19 2016 6:19 utc | 276

Quadriad@273 - You're right about the land supply route. Dier EzZor Airport is completely closed - they won't even put a chopper down there. It's that close to ISIS-controlled areas. The humanitarian aid sent there couldn't even be sent by truck. They had to airdrop palletized loads from 20,000 ft.

The only way that airport is opening to any traffic will be after they drive ISIS out of the city and surrounding areas completely. That's why the U.S. is so desperate to prevent an ISIS defeat there - they MUST keep the SAA from taking Deir EzZor. If the SAA liberates Deir EzZor, then the U.S. loses the biggest oilfields, the pipeline routes and all of eastern Syria. The Syrian Air Force and RuAF will move in there as soon as it's safe and secure. They will own all of eastern Syria once they have control of that airport again.

Notice that the Turks are not really fighting much to take ISIS turf in Northern Syria. The head-choppers are mostly either joining the FSA or fleeing southeast. They're not showing up in any great numbers in ar Raqqa or al Bab - they're going straight to Deir EzZor. Same with the ones sneaking out of Mosul now. Deir EzZor is the U.S.-ordered replacement ISIS capital for Syria and Iraq. That's where ISIS will make their last stand, holding the land and oil wells until the U.S. (or stooges) eventually 'liberate' it from them.

Also note that the U.S. and OIR flunkees will never find or attack the massive head-chopper caravans heading to Deir EzZor - they WANT ISIS to flee there. The U.S. knows Raqqa and Mosul are finished, but they can still make use of the ISIS left-overs for Syrian land/oil/water theft placeholders. At the appropriate time, the U.S. will use some proxy force - FSA, Turkomen, maybe Arab militias - to 'liberate' Deir EzZor for some kind of independent, autonomous head-chopper east-Syrian Sunnistan.

CENTCOM must eventually wipe out the few SAA holding out at Deir EzZor to clear the way for ISIS. This 'accident' was merely the first opportunity. Once al Bab and ar Raqqa starts emptying out, there will be thousands of extra head-choppers in Deir EzZor for the U.S. to convince and assist to overrun SAA-held territory. The U.S. has already decided the fate of Deir EzZor. It's not a matter of 'if' but 'when'. If the RuAF starts bombing Deir EzZor with any enthusiasm, expect the U.S. to scream bloody murder.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Sep 19 2016 6:24 utc | 277

@ PavewayIV

The rejection of empire has begun. But unlike the war taunt to Putin by the commenter before you , BiblesNBlowjobs, the US empire needs to implode of its own doing. And they are doing a pretty good job of it.

It comes back to money. The crash of Empire will occur when countries stop buying US Treasuries. With China becoming part of the SDR basket on October 1, 2016, a crack is opened in total private finance control. And trust is bleeding profusely. That is what I heard you asking for with your " and gets the rest of the world to call us on it " comment.

How long will it take for that crack to end private finance? Damn hard to tell. There seems to be a lot of pressure building for some sort of existential confrontation but maybe it is a new normal.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Sep 19 2016 6:30 utc | 278

276 peter au

how were people sacrificed.for what purpose.mh17 was Malaysian.

Posted by: mcowen | Sep 19 2016 6:42 utc | 279

@mcowen 279

While the Australians and Dutch were blowing hot air at the UN,basically screaming the Russians dunnit, the Malaysians quietly went and retrieved the victims bodies and the black boxes. Then the Australians and Dutch sat back in Kiev waiting for the EU to bring in sanctions on Russia. As soon as the sanctions went through the Ukraine Rada passed a law to allow the Dutch and Australians in. But as luck would have it, Ukraine forces pushed into the area just as the law passed, and with the fighting and whatnot, no investigation could take place. Malaysia was not for some months allowed to be part of the "official" investigation. Why?

Now we have Australia and Dutch teamed up again, volunteering they were in on this strike even though nobody accused them? Taking the heat off the US?

Just seemed a weird coincidence. Blackmail?

Posted by: Peter AU | Sep 19 2016 7:05 utc | 280

psychohistorian@278 - "...It comes back to money. The crash of Empire will occur when countries stop buying US Treasuries..." Yes, that for sure, but can that really happen to the degree it would take? There's just not that much other paper floating around to replace it, and all these soverign debt Ponzis are somewhat linked. It would hurt, but could it happen to a degree to be fatal without killing every other nation's debt schemes? Jury is still out on that one - too much interlinking. Still, this is going to happen anyway at the same time that other countries start standing on their own two feet and calling the U.S. the manipulative bully that it is. I yearn for the day a major nation has the balls to say something like the Philippines Foreign Minister Yasay said to the U.S. last week:

Yasay responded: “You don’t go to the Philippines telling us, I will give you something, I will help you grow, but here is the checklist you have to comply with and we will lecture you on human rights … We cannot forever be the little brown brothers of America.”

That's the Philippines, mind you. Heavily dependent on 'big brother', yet they've absolutely had it with U.S. arrogance. President Duterte isn't bashful about calling out U.S. hypocrisy and meddling. He knows the U.S. can Qaddafi him in the blink of an eye and he doesn't give a damn. The Philippines isn't going to shut down the U.S. by refusing to buy our paper, but they're fanning the flames (however slightly) of our demise as global schoolyard bully. I'll know the world has become sane again when the rest of the world starts saying the same thing. In the mean time, I'm grateful for Duterte and his administration publicly bitch-slapping the U.S.

I would rather the U.S. come to its senses out of being shamed into decency rather than the rest of the world destroying us financially, but I can't say we won't deserve it.

"...How long will it take for that crack to end private finance?

I'm with you in spirit there, but I think you know my answer: never. Private finance is the ultimate tool of power-seeking psychopaths. You may as well have asked "How long will it take for psychopaths to go away?" Until the world figures out who the enemy actually is, they will just keep replacing the ones they have with new ones.

If you don't control the psychopaths, then private finance will most certainly not go away with some kind of massive social change. It will just look a little different. Unfortunately, I have 6000 years of human history to offer as evidence.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Sep 19 2016 7:18 utc | 281

@ likklemore | 217

Remember what happened to Bernie Sanders despite massive crowds when compared to Clintons 10 person get togethers? She still won. Deibold voting machines determine the winner, not the voters. If Clinton is alive in November, she'll win.

Posted by: electionthoughts | Sep 19 2016 7:21 utc | 282

@psychohistorian 278

There seems to be an air of desperation or urgency about the US actions recently, like they haven't much time. On the other side Russia China continually trying to buy time. All the while exposing the US for what it is.
US economy is very much like Clinton, requiring rose coloured glasses and injections of QE to remain somewhat functional. Rose coloured glasses being confidence in the $US.
I am not 100% on alternative international systems that China Russia have set up, but I am guessing they are at a point where they can quickly be brought up to speed if the US based system crashes.

Posted by: Peter AU | Sep 19 2016 7:23 utc | 283

@#216 I hafta agree the Chelsea event reminds me of a certain anthrax effort back in 2001. The easiest way to tell will be if they don't catch anyone they could fit a guy up then shoot him, but where I sit the intelligence services are just too clumsy and frequently incompetent to be confident of a successful fit up. I doubt they will try that because too much could go wrong and whoever it is (most likely some iteration of military intelligence) will be worried that trying to make everything nice & neat will blow up in their faces & make things much much worse.

The fact that they don't have the NY Governor on side indicates this was one hurried operation.
The New York state pols are gonna need more lunches than whoever dreamed this up can provide, because they (NY pols) know if word goes around NY is still a favourite spot for daesh/al quaeda/ isis, tourism will go back down the gurgler.

As far as the spooks who did it are concerned the bomb did the job - the Syria mess was at the top of the news across the US, the 'bomb' blew it outta amerika's consciousness which is all it was required to do.

Of course the fact that NY law enforcement appear to be unwilling to play ball could mean that the locals will do a real investigation which will have a certain spook cell sweating, but it is a big step from where the NY mob are now, to hanging an arm of intelligence out to dry - more likely NY is gonna pick up a bundle of federally funded resources to keep them happy if it was a uncle sam scam.

ps they have 'found' more pressure cookers - talk about the gift that keeps on giving. Maybe the latest cache is been dropped to pressure the gov - "say it was daesh or we're gonna keep finding bombs".

Sorry bout the typos I gotta head cold that's a real bastard - back to bed.

Posted by: Debs is dead | Sep 19 2016 7:27 utc | 284

Peter AU@280 - Just to be clear, Peter, I was only aware that Australia and Denmark (not Netherlands) that have admitted to participating in the Deir EzZor strike. Your points about MH17 are well taken and that may have been the incentive for the Australian announcement, but I don't think the Dutch have said anything even though they are part of the coalition.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Sep 19 2016 7:28 utc | 285

@262 Peter AU @266 Paveway

The Australian/Danish connections ... made through the TNC press ... seem like the mafia ritual, where you have to make a hit to prove your loyalty, and subsequent dependence upon, the mob. At least that's what the TNC media are trying to get across ... Hey, this is Cosa Nostra. We'll either hang together or we'll all hang separately.

@268 Suzie 'The United States’ accidental bombing of Syrian troops over the weekend has put it on the defensive, undercutting American efforts to reduce violence in the civil war and open paths for humanitarian relief.

'The United States had thought that if a deal to ease hostilities in Syria, struck by Secretary of State John Kerry and his Russian counterpart in Geneva nine days ago, fell apart, it would reveal Russia’s duplicity in the war, in which Moscow has supported the Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad.'

I haven't read the article and won't but I like your two paragraphs, Big Lies #1 and #2.

1. The United States’ accidental bombing of Syrian troops ...
2. The United States had thought that if [the] deal ... fell apart, it would reveal Russia’s duplicity in the war.

No one, especially not the lyin' NYTimes, believes the bombing was 'accidental'.

It is the USA's duplicity in the war that has stage center.

Whether they admit it or not, 'the entire world' - meaning the 10% in the West that the TNC media bill as the 'entire world' - now knows the game has changed.

The USA is the undisputed evil empire, and in retrospect has been since 2001 or 2003. Those who stick with the US now will fall with the US, for the downward arc will have been seen to have become unmistakable with the USAF acting as the ISAF within the octave of the 15th anniversary of the greatest show on earth.

The Danes and the Australians may have reflexively knuckled their brows one last time, as the back toward the door, escaping 'the presence', but the way out is there in each case ... the Australians would never 'knowingly' have bombed the Syrians fighting IS in Syria ; the Danes may have taken part in what is 'presumed' to have been a mistake.

As the days progress the Danes will realize that their fault lies in their presumption of the US good faith, as the Australians discover that they were 'unknowingly' misled by the US' active misdirection.

Starting today decent people are going to start crossing the street when they see the US coming.

Posted by: jfl | Sep 19 2016 7:34 utc | 286

@280 Peter AU, '... the Australians and Dutch sat back in Kiev waiting for the EU to bring in sanctions on Russia. As soon as the sanctions went through the Ukraine Rada passed a law to allow the Dutch and Australians in ... Ukraine forces pushed into the area just as the law passed ... no investigation could take place. Malaysia was not for some months allowed to be part of the "official" investigation.'

Telling observation. Thank you.

Posted by: jfl | Sep 19 2016 7:40 utc | 287

peter au 280

conspiracy theories abound no doubt.

Posted by: mcowen | Sep 19 2016 7:47 utc | 288

@PavewayIV 285

Yep. My mistake. Tossing around too many things at the moment.

Posted by: Peter AU | Sep 19 2016 8:01 utc | 289

Interesting that the outcome of each US/allied aggression in Syria is always a tighter 'partnership' between Russia and the US. It's too clear to miss at this point: Russia is in on the carve up of Syria. Turkey and the US are gobbling up the north. Israel is gobbling up the Golan Heights area. Russia is getting several nice bases. Saudi Arabia and Jordan will get their chunks of the South, though it might be a little more complicated for them. Assad goes away, one way or another, Syria gets some weird neo-liberalism sharia hybrid government system to replace its relatively enlightened brand of socialism-lite and all the 'partners' get to feast - except for Iran, which somehow doesn't get invited to the 'peace' party... since it's presumably next on the menu...

Posted by: paul | Sep 19 2016 8:36 utc | 290

Check this out:

Posted by: xyz | Sep 19 2016 10:05 utc | 293

It is a signal to Russia and Syria. I am not sure though what lunacy it is supposed to convey

that our treachery and lies will be consecrated with blood. your blood.

Posted by: john | Sep 19 2016 10:13 utc | 295

The Saudi Iranian proxy war now fought in the New York Times and the
Wall Street Journal

Posted by: somebody | Sep 19 2016 10:30 utc | 296

Israel does not have the NUMBERS to flood Europe so it uses the muslums .....
There is no way that millions just start migrating out of the Middle East into Europe because of a sudden impulse to do so, some very powerful supporting group is behind this and it simply is not clear what would be the motivation for such a massive invasion this mass movement of people across European borders IS genocide: -- mass migration
Who has the most desire to empty the Levant of Arabs and send them packing to Europe. You kill so manywith tha birds t one stone it's irresistible.
Who killed Christ and has hated HIS followers for 2,000 years?

Posted by: franklin | Sep 19 2016 11:22 utc | 297

re 266.

After the Danes and Oz, incredible as it may seem, the Brits are now saying they were involved "in some way" in the expressions of the BBC.

Spreading the blame is the first thought that came to my mind. The Brits had had time to admit it earlier. It might well have take time to convince the Brits to claim responsibility....

Posted by: Laguerre | Sep 19 2016 11:23 utc | 298

Posted by: xyz | Sep 19, 2016 6:05:29 AM | 293

Yeah, my thought too. A headline scrubbing exercise.
It was probably the FBFFI (Federal Bureau of False Flag Instigation), the 9/11 team was never caught, named, or convicted and is therefore still intact.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Sep 19 2016 12:15 utc | 299

Disgusting! Enough with the USA and Israel immunity. This is a war crime and the USA should apologize and indemnize the victims family.
There should be no surprise when people in the ME dance and offer candies at 9/11 celebrations!

Posted by: virgile | Sep 19 2016 12:39 utc | 300

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