Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
October 12, 2016

The "Salafist Principality" - ISIS Paid Off To Leave Mosul, Take Deir Ezzor?

Updated below (3:34pm EDT)

On September 20 I wrote about the likely reason for the willful U.S. bombing attack on a critical Syrian army position in Deir Ezzor:

Two recent attacks against the Syrian Arab Army in east-Syria point to a U.S. plan to eliminate all Syrian government presence east of Palmyra. This would enable the U.S. and its allies to create a "Sunni entity" in east-Syria and west-Iraq which would be a permanent thorn in side of Syria and its allies.
The U.S. plan is to eventually take Raqqa by using Turkish or Kurdish proxies. It also plans to let the Iraqi army retake Mosul in Iraq. The only major city in Islamic State territory left between those two is Deir Ezzor. Should IS be able to take it away from the isolated Syrian army garrison it has at least a decent base to survive. (Conveniently there are also rich oil wells nearby.) No one, but the hampered Syrian state, would have an immediate interest to remove it from there.

There are new signs that this analysis was correct.

Yesterday the Turkish President Erdogan made a remark that points into that direction. As the British journalist Elijah Magnier summarized it:

Elijah J. Magnier @EjmAlrai

Erdogan: #Turkey will participate in #Mosul just like it did in #Jarablus.Army doesn't take orders from #Iraq PM who should know his limits.

4:06 AM - 11 Oct 2016

"Like Jarablus" was an interesting comparison. The Turks and their proxies took Jarablus in center-north Syria from the Islamic State without any fight and without any casualties from fighting. ISIS had moved away from the city before the Turks walked in. There obviously had been a deal made.

That's why I replied this to Magnier's tweet above:

Moon of Alabama @MoonofA

The Turks will pay off ISIS in Mosul to leave early just like they did in Jarablus?

5:58 AM - 12 Oct 2016

Three hours later this rumor from a well connected Syrian historian and journalist in London answered that question:

Nizar Nayouf @nizarnayouf

Breaking news:Sources in #London say:“#US& #Saudi_Arabia concluded an agreement to let #ISIS leave #Mosul secretly& safely to #Syria"!

9:28 AM - 12 Oct 2016

Erdogan predicts that his troops and proxy forces will march into Mosul just like they marched into Jarablus: In a peaceful walk, without any fight, into a city free of Jihadis.

The Saudis and the U.S. arranged for that.

The U.S. bombed the most important SAA position in Deir Ezzor so that ISIS, now with the help of its cadres from Mosul, can take over the city. A nice place to keep it holed up in east-Syria until it can further be used in this or that imperial enterprise.


A good plan when your overall aim is to create an obedient mercenary statelet in the center of the Middle East. As the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency wrote in 2012:


But this plan requires to fight the Syrian and Russian air-forces which will do their utmost to defend the SAA group and the 100-200,000 ISIS besieged Syrian civilians in Deir Ezzor. The the U.S. and its allies may be willing to do that. A well known British Tory member of parliament already made noise that British fighter jets should be free to shoot down Russian planes in Syria. The U.S. had claimed that British planes took part in the Deir Ezzor ambush.

The defenders of Deir Ezzor lack their own air defenses. The Russian systems at the Syrian west-coast can not reach that far east. The Syrian system are mostly positioned to defend Damascus and other cities from attacks by Israel.

Russia recently talked about delivering 10 new Pantsyr-S1 short-to-medium range air defense systems to Syria. At least two of those should be airlifted to Deir Ezzor as soon as possible.

UPDATE: I was just made aware of a recent speech by Hizbullah leader Nasrallah who smells the same stinking plot:

Sayyed Nasrallah said that the Americans intend to repeat Fallujah plot when they opened a way for ISIL to escape towards eastern Syria before the Iraqi warplanes targeted the terrorists’ convoy, warning that the same deceptive scheme is possible to be carried out in Mosul.

Posted by b on October 12, 2016 at 18:36 UTC | Permalink

next page »

Dier Ezzor needs some serious air defense. Pantsir's can defend against bombs and missiles but does not have the reach to get the planes.
Does ISIS still have fire control over the airport? If so, there does not seem any way to get serious air defence to Dier Ezzor.

Posted by: Peter AU | Oct 12 2016 18:46 utc | 1

I've noticed the Russians haven't been hitting ISIS so much of late with the whole Aleppo thing going on. They need to ensure they have sufficient forces on hand to wage a two front war. Southfront is reporting that the runway at their airbase is being extended to accommodate their strategic bombers, so that's a whitepill. Imagine launching those bad boys loaded to the gunwales with bombs right into the zone of combat - they can cruise for hours on standboy and pick-off targets of opportunity as they arise.

Posted by: lemur | Oct 12 2016 18:56 utc | 2

"Russia recently talked about delivering 10 new Pantsyr-S1 short-to-medium range air defense systems to Syria. At least two of those should be airlifted to Deir Ezzor as soon as possible."

But that'll irresponsibly start world War three. Oops sorry, the right person said it instead of the "wrong" person. The kind of wrong person who mentioned immediate serious defence, instead of 1 year late.

Joe Lauria reporting from inside Iraq said on Scott Hortons show, from about two weeks ago, Mosul was extremely quiet on the ISIS front.

Posted by: tom | Oct 12 2016 19:01 utc | 3

al masdar reports today that an ISIS attack on deir ezzor has begun. conveniently timed?

Posted by: kori | Oct 12 2016 19:03 utc | 4

Eventually the contradictions are going to be too hard to manage. Jarablus proved to be a flash point, the fallout from which was contained by Ash Carter somersaults and untold promises to Rojava. But to pull the same stunt in Mosul would be an epic fail. It is too big with too many parties hankering for the lion's share of the spoils. War between the proxies will erupt anew. But this time it will be hard to contain.

Posted by: Mike Maloney | Oct 12 2016 19:06 utc | 5

Peter AU | Oct 12, 2016 2:46:29 PM | 1
S-300VMs should be able to provide cover from Palmyra and there is an airfield there with a 2,000+ metre runway. I can't see Russia wanting to become involved in the ground war in Der Ezzor but holding Palmyra is a matter of prestige for Russia so committing air power and covering ground forces is a real possibility.

Posted by: Ghostship | Oct 12 2016 19:12 utc | 6

Greetings from London.

Like clockwork, B- you called it.

This wholeft Mosul are now attacking in Dier Ezzor, Syria.

Funny that the bridges that the Americans bombed just so happens to lay along the route that the Syrian Army would have to use to free the civilians being held hostage.

Dastardly move by Uncle Sam but you can see the logic (however risible) behind it. Won't make a jot of difference between now and Nov 9/January 8th however.

After that all bets are off

Posted by: Skeletor | Oct 12 2016 19:26 utc | 7

We are being governed by fools, Andrew Mitchell wants to down Russian jets "But what we do say is that the international community has an avowed responsibility to protect and that protection must be exerted".
Wrong, the International community can exert its responsibility i.e. R2P when all five members of the UNSC agree to it Otherwise it would be a coalition of the willing, outside International law.

Posted by: harrylaw | Oct 12 2016 19:31 utc | 8

British coward Andrew Mitchell, better known for the Plebgate incident ...

"He said NATO jets - including a British contingent - should be used to police the skies and enforce a no-fly zone."

Yep, hiding behind Artikel 5 of the 1949 NATO treaty. Didn't work out well for Turkey and Erdogan, did it? Will the British stooges try it once more!

Posted by: Oui | Oct 12 2016 19:40 utc | 9

UK Commons Calling for WRexit In New Attack on Russia

Posted by: Oui | Oct 12 2016 19:40 utc | 10

I have to wonder what sort of "rules" the US would expect Russia to follow if we get into a shooting war with them?

Posted by: Perimetr | Oct 12 2016 19:42 utc | 11


There are indeed some US (and Israeli) plans floating around that favour a partition of Syria (and Iraq) into impotent statelets. And you may be right in watching possible steps in this direction.

However, I think it is an error to take this important DIA report as proof for this.
First, the DIA is not the CIA, nor a neocon think-tank. This is a purely military report that assesses the military situation in Syria (and it does so with precision and good foresight). It does not speculate about future plans, but only about motives of the powers involved, which here is "isolating the Syrian regime".

It does NOT reveal any insight into US planning. Listen to what Michael Flynn (then director of the DIA) said about the situation.

Posted by: Qoppa | Oct 12 2016 19:46 utc | 12

(JCH) What will Iran do with the money that is going to flood their coffers?

(MF) The money will re-establish and solidify their banks and markets. The biggest investment will be in the security sector: the military will get pay increases, financing of Hezb’ Allah and Hamas will increase, there will be a spike in Quds force activity and funding, and the intelligence service will also make gains. In general security and intelligence capabilities will increase and financing of weapons systems will rise. The Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps’ (IRGC) narcotics cartel that stretches from Colombia and Venezuela to Afghanistan will benefit.

Yeah, Mike Flynn a great thinker ... NOT!

Posted by: Oui | Oct 12 2016 20:02 utc | 13

Former DIA Chief Michael Flynn Says Rise of Islamic State was "a willful decision" and Defends Accuracy of 2012 Memo

Plain and clear, not beating around the bush.

Posted by: Oui | Oct 12 2016 20:03 utc | 14

I quote Lavrov: "There are so many pussies around your presidential campaigns on both sides that I prefer not to comment."

I doubt if the US planned to take out the bridges as a preliminary to controlling anything. That a bunch of fly-boys took out some bridges is being taken (or might be) advantage is reality. Back in the day, the US dropped bombs all over Vietnam. Some of the damage would later be taken advantage of, but I didn't think then and don't think now that there was planning. It was more of a case of 'blow everything to shit then see if it works to our advantage.'

In the meantime, there is this to ponder:

Every morning an old man sits in front of his doorway, facing east. It is
early. The stars are still bright. At a special moment the man reaches
into his pouch, takes a pinch of tobacco and "poof" blows it into the
night air. Then there is a slight change along the edge of where the stars
meet the earth. The stars there begin to dim. Slowly. Those near the
horizon dim first, the those above the horizon. At a special moment the
man reaches into his pouch, takes a pinch of tobacco and "poof" blows it
into the dawn air. The stars continue to disappear and there along the
horizon, there is an orange glow ... like a great fire is there just
beyond the horizon. A place appears that does look like flames, and at
this special moment the man reaches into his pouch, takes a pinch of
tobacco and "poof" blows it into the air. Slowly, that place that looks
like fire grows ... and grows ... and grows. It looks as though this giant
ball of flame will consume everything. At that special moment the man
reaches into his pouch, takes a pinch of tobacco and "poof" blows it into
the dawn air. It is then that the old man reaches once more into his pouch
... this time with a pinch of corn pollen, and "poof" blows it into the
morning air. As though by magic the great ball of flame diminishes,
growing smaller, less menacing, until it is only the sun ... now to warm
the earth. The old man rises, goes to the bucket covered by a cloth,
hanging on a hook on the wall by the door and takes the water inside where
he will make coffee.

What will happen when this old man dies? Who will prevent the sun from
burning away the earth? Maybe another man will take his place? That is our
hope. But, maybe not.


Posted by: rg the lg | Oct 12 2016 20:03 utc | 15

#3 @Tom

Let's not forget that Russia is in Syria with the permission/invitation of the legitimate (internationally recognized) government.

What a strange world we live in where a countries right to defend itself from an invasion is considered a 'provocative act'.

Posted by: WG | Oct 12 2016 20:08 utc | 16

thanks b.. excellent coverage.

the jig was up when the usa '''accidentally''' bombed the syrian army in deir ezzor.. they gave away a good amount in that act and it has been the incentive for russia to notch it up one more level..

sultan wannabe erdogan is a helpful stooge for giving up the story line as well..

Posted by: james | Oct 12 2016 20:11 utc | 17
Moscow on October 12, 2016. (AFP PHOTO)

Speaking at an economic forum in Moscow Russian President Vladimir Putin has said that Russia knows which one of the terrorist groups present in Aleppo has carried out the attack on a UN humanitarian aid convoy near this city last month.

Posted by: schlub | Oct 12 2016 20:20 utc | 18

Gee,if the UK Royalists want to shoot at the Russians,perhaps the Russians can work on turning the Falkland Islands into Malvinas

Posted by: bbbb | Oct 12 2016 20:23 utc | 19

I do not remember the source but I remember reading that President Nixon requested information regarding the JFK assassination from the CIA and they laughed at him. Also the Watergate break ins were related to the search for information regarding the JFK liquidation.

What do you all make of the following Trump quotes? To me they indicate a Pentagon thought set and NOT a CIA thought set.

"Donald Trump is on Assad's side. He went on, "I think you have to knock out ISIS. Right now, Syria is fighting ISIS." This couldn't be a clearer signal to the world that he would allow Assad and Russia a free hand to conduct their brutal war not just against ISIS, but against the rebels who oppose Assad's regime."

"This was a remarkable, even unprecedented, moment in the history of presidential politics. We can argue whether Russia is an enemy or a frenemy, a rival power or a potential threat, but the autocratic Vladimir Putin is working against American interests and, according to virtually all credible sources, actively engaged in hacking to influence this election."

The above statements are diametrically opposed to the CIA infospew.

Personally I believe that Trump and the people backing Trump have thrown down the gauntlet by declaring ISIS as the enemy.

Posted by: ALberto | Oct 12 2016 20:27 utc | 20

Congratulations and much gratitude, b - an enormously useful recap of the last month's maneuvers. If this is as far as you'll go in patting yourself on the back, please allow one from a reader, for your reasoning that coincides exactly with Sayyed Nasrallah's.

So Aleppo is won, or lost if you're evil, and attention turns to the east.

Every photo I see of Putin and Erdogan together is beguiling - they seem like such good pals, united in fun and so relaxed in each other's company. Erdogan defies a pencil sketch by any analyst at the moment. If his purposes were as black and white as many commenters say, Russia would not deal with him the way it does. Important parts of the Syrian and Iraqi story depend on Turkey, and part of how Turkey acts depends on Russia, and it doesn't seem to me that the lines of these relationships are clear or even agreed yet.

Fort Russ has a piece by Ruslan Ostashko that muses in this same way over the various elements of Erdogan's position that are not yet shown:
Putin's Deal for Erdogan: Turkish Stream, Syria, and something else...

Posted by: Grieved | Oct 12 2016 20:27 utc | 21

@ALberto #20:

What do you all make of the following Trump quotes?

Trump also said at the debate that it was "stupid" for the US to announce its intention to take Mosul, because ISIS would just leave without doing any fighting.

So when it comes to foreign policy at least, there is a clear difference between the two main presidential candidates for a change.

Posted by: Demian | Oct 12 2016 20:50 utc | 22

Is Trump a Manchurian Candidate? Is he there act insane so that the KKKlintons succeed thronewise?

Posted by: ALberto | Oct 12 2016 20:55 utc | 23

The US took out 7 bridges on the Euphrates above in and below De-Ezzor in the last few weeks after the attack.

The SAA has taken at least 1 point back from ISIS possibly 2, but not all that they lost from the US attack. I still feel this was a quickly cobbled together attack just to screw up the Russian / US joint centre. Obama has zero power right now, Carter et al can do what they please. BO is just trying to keep a lid on it for a few more months, so he won't be firing anyone at this stage. He is now Carter and Brennan's' doormat.

Why has NATO deployed an AWAC to Syria?

"Responding to a question from Reuters, Mr. Stoltenberg indicated that NATO would deploy AWACS to improve the Coalition’s view of the sky.

However, Syrian air-space is legally used only by Syria and Russia, and illegally by the Coalition and Israël. The rebel or terrorist armies have no air force. It seems that NATO intends to test the methods of aerial surveillance which still function despite the deployment of the Russian system for disconnecting the Alliance’s command and control..."

The Russian government has fully approved the use of the Syrian airbase "indefinitely".
The Russians are in negotiations with Egypt to reestablish their old base there.
The Russians are considering reopening their old bases in Vietnam and CUBA!

What prompted this? I wonder.

Posted by: Dean | Oct 12 2016 20:56 utc | 24

Putin today openly accused US of using terrorists/jihadists for US geopolitical ends (In interview to French TF-1). That's pretty much sums it up. Link is in Russian.

But that is what was known long ago, now it was openly called as it is on the highest state level.

Posted by: SmoothieX12 | Oct 12 2016 21:13 utc | 25

@ Mike Maloney 5.
I was thinking the same thing. Mosul is a big city. It is strange to read that Erdogan has talked about going after it. It is clear he does not respect the sovereignty of either.

Posted by: Curtis | Oct 12 2016 21:30 utc | 26

... either state Syria or Iraq.

Posted by: Curtis | Oct 12 2016 21:31 utc | 27

Still think Russia needs to send another ten thousand Special Forces troops along with Iran sending the same amount of Quds Force. Clean out East Aleppo on the ground to reduce need for air strikes to reduce PR nonsense, move the air strikes to Deir Ezzor, then after clearing Aleppo and securing it, send the 20,000 forces (and more) to Deir Ezzor with full air support and push ISIS back far enough to set up an airbase there with everything needed to conduct strikes in the AO.

The main caveat to that plan would be to not take any necessary forces away from the fight against Al Qaeda in the West. That has to be the first priority.

The other point to be made is that regardless of what comes out of Obama's mouth or anyone else in power in Washington, the goal remains the destruction of Syria by any means necessary. Things like this sort of ISIS move PROVE that. These things don't happen by accident and Obama is not ignorant of them - he gets a briefing every day and unless he's been utterly shut out he knows what's going on. Give that clown no slack. If he isn't giving the orders, then he doesn't care and that makes him just as guilty for whatever happens.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Oct 12 2016 21:33 utc | 28

alberto, demian... did you happen to notice this thread isn't another thread on the usa election? whoever you both are voting for, i would run the other way, if following the story line is any indication..

Posted by: james | Oct 12 2016 21:36 utc | 29

Yes Saudi Arabia and USA have concluded a deal to bring ISIL from Mosul to Syria but the key word missing is "Turkey" which acts on behalf of Saudi in Syria and Iraq.

Including the word "Turkey" in your tweet is a dead giveaway since the recent hugging incident between Erogan and Putin demonstrating, yet again, all parties are working together to bring ISIL fighters to Syria so they can be killed.

Forgive me for not playing along with efforts to prolong this war to achieve objectives of the plutocracy but the long suffering and tremendously couurageous people of this great land need all zionists to please F off and let Syrians rebuild their homes and lives without any further 'assistance.'

Posted by: C I eh? | Oct 12 2016 21:46 utc | 30

b, I've got some doubts about this. Mosul is strongly Sunni Arab. They may not agree with Da'ish, but what is in prospect is not going to attract them.

The forces prospective for taking over Mosul are 1) the Peshmerga. Not liked, they were immmediately thrown out of Northern Sunni Iraq, when Da'ish arrived.

2) The Shi'a Iraqi army arriving from the south. They are said to have some Sunni militia with them. They're going to be popular, after the open anti-Sunni policy of Maliki.

Of course the situation may be like Falluja, where the Sunni population don't seem to have defended Da'ish.

If I were Da'ish, I wouldn't rely on this idea. Retain Mosul or not will be based on what is possible, not on an offer of elsewhere.

Posted by: Laguerre | Oct 12 2016 22:01 utc | 31

To 30: Amen.

Posted by: Take Me | Oct 12 2016 22:03 utc | 32

By the way, I've just received an invitation to lecture at the University of Samarra, 250 km to the south of Mosul. That should be fun.

Posted by: Laguerre | Oct 12 2016 22:07 utc | 33

james @29

"did you happen to notice this thread isn't another thread on the usa election? whoever you both are voting for, i would run the other way, if following the story line is any indication."

My original thought was why would US MSM allow Trump to trumpet that ISIS is the enemy?

I can find no one that I can vote for this election cycle. Local and National.

Posted by: ALberto | Oct 12 2016 22:08 utc | 34

@31 LG, 'Mosul is strongly Sunni Arab.'

But isn't that b's point? Erdogan's Turks are going to occupy Mosul, save the Sunnis from the Kurds and Shi'ia. Mosul is going to rejoin the Ottoman empire. Wonder if the Iraqis - and the Kurds - will fight the Turks?

Posted by: jfl | Oct 12 2016 22:18 utc | 35

Moving ISIS from Mosul to take Deir Ezzor is madness.

Does anyone else here mirror this mindset? A smell of smoke rising from the unfolding events and about to go hot …beyond use the proxies.

Link to this email here:

"Russian Government Officials Told To Immediately Bring Back Children Studying Abroad"

Many parties have missed the significance of the Russians advice to return the students studying abroad.

I recall a story my grandfather told me about when at age 17 in 1917, him being in a Boys Finishing Academy in Moscow and being summoned by his uncle who was Postmaster General of Russia and being told that war was coming and instructed to return to the Academy that afternoon, pack his belongings and get on his horse and return to the Ukraine to warn the family to disburse into the countryside because they would be hunted for being wealthy landowners.

The Russian culture is such that family is always brought close to home in times of pending conflict.

Think about safety of children who maybe held as hostages or be subject to retribution at the hands of a country at war, or one that is subject to attack.

A parent will want their children closer at hand at home.
War is coming, Tom to Europe and the Levant. Note the 3 hour emergency meeting in London today. Events are cascading behind the curtains far faster than people know. Whether the war beaters succeed remains to be seen but should be subject to public debate and knowledge. Instead we get balderdash and deceit.

We do not know all the NATO moves but clearly by the Russian moves we can see and ascertain they are preparing for war on 3 fronts shortly. I knew sometime ago now that that was part of their preparation for what they thought might occur. And a reason they have not committed more to Syria. If they wanted to they could intensify the air program but that would leave them weak elsewhere so they are fighting on that front while maintaining their defensive capability.

While it is in my opinion, suicide to strike at Syria given the defensive systems in place it does not mean that such an attempt will not be made. It would not be the first time troops are sent to death. While in the Ukraine NATO or perhaps more pointedly US snipers are positioned along with certain Polish troops ( regular or volunteer, likely mixed) for a move on the Donbass with the intent to draw Russia in to what is seen by the planners as contained conflicts. It is why Russia moved the Iskander missiles into Kallingrad which from there will be able to reach as far as Berlin. ( 450 mile radius). Think about why 3 new vessels were dispatched to the Med equipped with Kalibir missiles and having the most deadly anti ship missiles that jointly were developed with India, to why in the case of an outbreak of hostilities the command has been given for local decentralized response.

Hollande being the weak foolish leader he is is, toeing the flawed US line in foreign policy ( it will continue to cost him in the up coming elections) and it is why Putin cancelled his visit of October 19th. In fact, rumor has it that Lavrov will be told to stop talking to Kerry, in the not too distant future ( a terrible signpost when it occurs). A Russian tradition is to always talk and keep the lines of communication open until the advent of hostilities, so one gleams from this when this action happens, an outbreak of “hot” hostilities is very near.

There is so much, we are not being told that it is truly saddening and the media if it had character would have shame. Apart from the alternative media and various bloggers the rest is not worth spending time on. And if when looking at alternative media, ask for who is paying the bills in the background as that too is heavily influenced.

With the cabal in the process of losing control on many fronts it seems war is their preferred reaction. To what gain remains to be seen or even what logic applies to conflict that can go horribly wrong with dire consequences for regions, people and perhaps even the planet. There are simply NO winners in a nuclear fight between nations like America, Russia and China. And the likelihood that peace will be given a chance to bring prosperity to the world is fading fast.

[CIGA] Robert

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

War is the greatest cover-up.

When the financials fail.

Posted by: likklemore | Oct 12 2016 22:21 utc | 36

Russia and Erdogan are thicker than thieves now, or Russia hopes they are. Concerned about Turkstream. So Russia cannot help the Iraqis with their Turkish problem. Can't help the Syrians, either. Can bomb the ISIS convoys heading from Iraq to Deir Ezzor, though, coming from Iran or western Syria with long range bombers, as lemur points out @2?

Posted by: jfl | Oct 12 2016 22:25 utc | 37

This appears to be confirmation of a sorts...

US, Saudis to grant 9,000 ISIS fighters free passage from Iraqi Mosul to Syria – source

Apparently the plan is explicitly to attack Deir Ezzor AND Palmyra.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Oct 12 2016 22:37 utc | 38

re 35

But isn't that b's point? Erdogan's Turks are going to occupy Mosul, save the Sunnis from the Kurds and Shi'ia.
I would think that Turks are no more acceptable. Mosul is well outside Turkish territory.

Posted by: Laguerre | Oct 12 2016 22:44 utc | 39

My opinion is that the Muslawis won't fight for Da'ish. They've had enough. However, what Da'ish does is another matter. They could fight through the city, if it seemed that Mosul was vital.

Posted by: Laguerre | Oct 12 2016 22:53 utc | 40

is there any way to confirm the idea of the usa/saudi arabia having an agreement with isis for safe passage from mosul to syria? from rt news..("The US and Saudi Arabia have agreed to grant free passage to thousands of Islamic State militants before the Iraqi city of Mosul is stormed. The jihadists will be redeployed to fight against the government in Syria, a military-diplomatic source told RIA Novosti."}

that sure would be benevolent of the usa/saudi arabia if true.. not to mention they would verify isis is nothing more then a mercenary group to be located wherever regime change or mayham is the desired end result..

Posted by: james | Oct 12 2016 23:21 utc | 41

Russia and Erdogan are thicker than thieves now, or Russia hopes they are. Concerned about Turkstream. Posted by: jfl | Oct 12, 2016 6:25:49 PM | 37

I do not think so. They simply "compartmentalize". On Syria Putin and Erdogan have totally divergent plans and interests. OTOH, Turkstream offers good opportunities for both. As Erdogan has also divergent interests from USA, he needs some leverage, and nothing is better for that then the "Russian card". He also needs a show of independence to his supporters who believe that he is a great leader: that require some grand moves. Putin needs a bypass for Ukraine to increase national economic security, and if Turkstream is operating then (1) Ukrainians will be less prone to extortion based on the pipelines on their territory (2) Turkey will be somewhat loath to drop the deal because it would cost them money (3) would they be so inclined, by that time the political situation in Bulgaria may change, the current government is rather anti-Russian, but the popular sentiment is not.

But in Syria, Erdogan is a Sunni supremacist and Ottoman dreamer. Russia is best served with a unified, more-or-less secular Syria. Israel is best served with the war in Syria dragging forever or ending in fragmentation. For USA the latter has benefits too and few downsides. For West Europe it is similar, except the downside in the form of refugees.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Oct 12 2016 23:22 utc | 42

Trump said as much during Sunday's debate. He asked why Obama was announcing to ISIS that the US was going into Mosul in two weeks. "They have already left!" he said.

Posted by: Diana | Oct 12 2016 23:47 utc | 43

@42 PB

Yes, well thicker than thieves has an ironic edge to it, as does the knife that one thief might slip through the ribs of the other when he feels he can get away with it. What I meant here was that, for the sake of Turkstream, Russia can afford no help to the Syrians or the Iraqis during the times of their Turkish troubles. Longer term, Syria's and Iraq's Turkish troubles are likely to become Russia's as well.

Longer term, I imagine that switching from a Ukrainian to a Turkish dependency for the distribution of their gas will be out of the frying pan and into the fire as far as the Russians and Gazprom are concerned.

Posted by: jfl | Oct 13 2016 0:30 utc | 44

C I eh? | Oct 12, 2016 5:46:35 PM | 30

Tend to agree. There are 185 miles of empty desert between Mosul and Der ez-Aur, 80 of them inside Syria. Daesh would be sitting ducks. I’m thinking Iraq War I and the long walk back to Baghdad.

Richard Steven Hack | Oct 12, 2016 6:37:21 PM | 38 re: RT article

USG/KSA maybe could work a deal w/ Iraq to allow passage to the Syrian border. Then what? The headchoppers would be exposed crossing 80 miles of Syrian desert. So once Daesh enters Syria, US closes the border behind them and they’re trapped.

I mean, in the lead up to the election is Obama going to provide air cover for the same clowns who beheaded Foley? Can’t really see it. Never mind the votes, there are almost 400 million weapons in the hands of private Americans, anyone one of whom would gladly open fire on anyone protecting these salafist turds.

But setting up a trap in the desert – whoa! Democrats take WH, House, Senate – clean sweep.

Sorry, folks. Just a wet dream there. It’s all we got when there’s so little hope.

Posted by: Denis | Oct 13 2016 1:16 utc | 45

why doesnt Andrew Mitchell call to protect Yemen?

Posted by: brian | Oct 13 2016 1:37 utc | 46

Wouldn't any large movement of troops from Mosul to Deirdre exorcism constitute an easy target for Syrian, Russian and Iraqi planes?

Posted by: Alaric | Oct 13 2016 1:48 utc | 47

A little ditty we've all seen repeated throughout the Russian media bares another repetition here.

The s-400 defends the skies. The Pantsir defends the s-400.

Posted by: Wwinsti | Oct 13 2016 2:00 utc | 48

One suspects that Christian Colonialism's Crusading Cretins are about to cross a red line in Syria. If nothing else this extra-territorial adventure demonstrates, to their long list of historical victims, that they're incapable of renouncing their Racist Supremacist delusions and must be expunged from the planet.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Oct 13 2016 2:14 utc | 49

US military launches strikes in Yemen,citing retaliation
Thu Oct 13, 2016 3:10AM

Posted by: schlub | Oct 13 2016 3:17 utc | 50

The notion that US+Russia are working together to set a trap and thereby eliminate a large number of ISIS combatants is fanciful. This is classic Obamabot hopey-changey nonsense to keep opposition off-balance. About as reliable as the excitement over a possible Turkish 'pivot'.

Eliminating ISIS and other extremists as a fighting force only requires that governments that support them stop doing so. After that they are merely criminals destined for prison and poverty.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Oct 13 2016 3:23 utc | 51

Re: Posted by: likklemore | Oct 12, 2016 6:21:48 PM | 36

This kind of posting makes things pretty clear to me about what may be about to happen.

Obviously the Russians are rooting for Trump and pulling out all stops for him (whatever they say), because he is perhaps the only hope (albeit not a great hope because he can be easily manipulated or even eliminated if needs be - Pence is clearly a dyed in the wool - company man who'd do a great job following orders), the Russians are preparing for what they as happening in the next few weeks/ months.

It looks likely to me that there will be a big false flag attack on the Americans, likely blamed on the Syrians, that will mean some kind of larger US involvement in Syria against the SAA/Russians/Iranians/Hezbollah etc.

So when will this happen?

I think it's fair to say if somehow Trump actually wins the Presidential Election - this false flag is pretty much guaranteed almost 100% to happen in November - between November 8-27 I'd say - 27 because that's the last weekend of the month, and they do love these things happening on weekends.

Obviously the false flag would be designed to force Trump's hand when he takes office into following an already introduced policy - ie against Syria/Russia - it would be amazing if he managed to reverse this momentum.

If Hillary wins (which I expect), there may be more time to prepare and I still think October/November 2017 is the time period when the Empire would plan to have secured successful election victories in France & Germany, if not the Netherlands by that stage - and it would be the perfect time to pull the Global Financial System apart in the run-up to the Russian Presidential Election (March 2018).

But, if Trump wins on November 8 I estimate we have as of today 5-6 weeks maximum before a big False Flag against the Americans in Syria - the timing of this False Flag would obviously be heavily impacted by the situation on the ground in Aleppo.

If I was the Syrians/ Russians I would really try and win that battle in Aleppo quicksmart prior to election day.

Sure - they might still try and pull a False Flag before the Election in that case - but at least then Trump would have the chance to try and swing that False Flag to his benefit and blame Hillary/Obama for the quagmire. So ideally if they want to take down Trump and lock him into a military strategy he might otherwise not go for - they'd do it only when they have to - ie in November.

Posted by: Julian | Oct 13 2016 3:57 utc | 52

Re: Posted by: Julian | October 12, 2016 at 11:57 PM

I might add, one might usefully say - why do elections matter if they're just going to do whatever they want anyway?

Elections matter because they're a great way to pacify the masses and give them the impression that they're deciding policy and what's really going on.

A great release valve.

If you try and cancel elections and the expressed "will of the people" you then might well end up with political uncertainty and a febrile revolutionary atmosphere which disrupts your plans.

Just thought I'd provide that clarification for why the German/French elections in 2017, in my opinion, matter.

Posted by: Julian | Oct 13 2016 4:04 utc | 53

‘Limited self-defense strikes’: US military destroys 3 ‘radar sites’ in Yemen...

for all we know the saudi's attacked the us cruiser... either way we know who the bad guys are, and they are never the saudis.. this according to the exceptional nation world dominance doctrine circa 2016...

Posted by: james | Oct 13 2016 4:18 utc | 54

I am kind of hopeful that ISIS, under urgent American orders, will abandon Mosul (or surrender it to the Iraqi liberators with unusually low resistance) and head to Deir Ez Zor for an all out attack on who they have been created to destroy in the first place - SAA.

I am equally hopeful that Iran will air lift a couple more IRGC brigades over to the Deir in time to butcher the ISIS-ists arriving.

The enemy is the weakest while majorly repositioning and if this is such an opportunity, it should not be missed to utterly destroy them.

Annihilation of 2+ ISIS brigades will leave their US commanders in much despair and sadness and force them to further expedite their rash decision making, already apparent in the sudden "humanitarian concern" for the Jihadi fragment of Aleppo, the city which has strangely enough been under incessant destruction for the last 4.5 years, at least as much by such Jihadis as not.

Posted by: Quadriad | Oct 13 2016 4:44 utc | 55

Dammit another unedited post. But its content is clear enough.

Posted by: Quadriad | Oct 13 2016 4:45 utc | 56

Putin on a political solution and the failure of the cease fire.."No-one should deliver political rhetoric but should look for a way out of the situation, including in Syria," he said. "What is the way out? It must be the only one: the parties to the conflict should be reasoned into following the path of a political solution," he added.

"We have reached an agreement with (Syrian) President (Bashar) Assad. He gave his consent to adopt a new constitution and to hold elections based on the constitution," Putin said, noting "provided the people do not vote for President Assad, the power will be changed in a democratic way, strictly controlled by international bodies, by the UN, but not through outside armed interference."

"I cannot understand whom it cannot suit as it is a democratic way to solve the issue," Putin said".
Putin must know a democratic political solution is the last thing the West and its friends the Gulfies want. Assad would win by a landslide, that is why Putin must face up to the obvious and prepare for war. He knows that to fail in Syria is to condemn Lebanon and Iran to the same fate. Followed by themselves.

Posted by: harrylaw | Oct 13 2016 5:57 utc | 57

I suspect Russia is aware of the plan and will do nothing to stop it, because the carve up is being plotted now. Russia has had little interest in E. Syria from the beginning. Russia (Putin, the Kremlin etc.) just made a pipeline deal with Turkey,I read today..This seemed totally fucking insane to me, but then I remember that the Russian capitalist ruling class simply wants to get a pipeline built and cash out. If that means the entirety of Syria winds up being Damascus and a few Up-scale Christian neighborhoods on the Mediterranean so be it.

Posted by: tSinilats | Oct 13 2016 6:02 utc | 58

Latest Professor Emeritus Stephen F Cohen - John Batchelor podcast very gloomy. I thought Cohen was going to cry at one point. Bleak slide to WW-III. USA leadership has gone insane. Otherwise they are playing a deadly game of bluff.

To me it seems only social media in The West only way to awaken the MSM hypnotised masses before its too late (if it already isn't).

Liking and sharing the Facebook page of United States Peace Council would be a start - do It!

Posted by: anonymous | Oct 13 2016 6:29 utc | 59


Banned "Charles Drake" aka "cdrake" aka "Chuck Mcqueer" aka ... aka ... aka ...
Deleted all comments from the relevant addresses.


Posted by: b | Oct 13 2016 6:37 utc | 60

Re: Posted by: tSinilats | Oct 13, 2016 2:02:35 AM | 58

Well if that's the case they're fairly thick aren't they.

And then Turkey signs a deal with Qatar/Saudi Arabia/ Iraq/ Syria(Sunnistan) and runs a competing pipeline up to Turkey and Turkey gets to play them off against each other to get the best deal - ie, Turkey wins.

Is the Russian leadership really that obtuse and stupid? I doubt it.

Posted by: Julian | Oct 13 2016 6:49 utc | 61

schlub@50 - All the .mil conspiracy theory folks (me) knew why those ships were sent into the straits. The only thing we couldn't figure out was what kind of false flag the U.S. would use to Tomahawk Yemen because nobody would believe the Houthis would be dumb enough to fire on a U.S. missile cruiser. They hate the U.S., but have no reason to rattle our cage THAT much. They fired on the UAE-contracted Swift because it was bringing armor and weapons to Saudi puppet Hadi's forces in Yemen. Attacking a U.S. missile destroyer accomplishes absolutely nothing for them.

When the Houthis heard the USS Mason and Nitze were attacked, they thought it was a joke. They denied any such attack as preposterous, asking the obvious question: "Why the hell would we ever do that?

But it gets a little better for us in tinfoil hat land. This post by someone looking for images of deleted Tweets sums it up nicely:

Few hours before Reuter's announcement of a U.S. Navy destroyer came under missile attack off Yemen on Sunday, Saudi official accounts on tweeter like Journalist Fahd Kamely and Saudi-24 News had tweeted that the Royal Saudi Naval Forces targeted what they thought to be an Iranian ship for suspicion of supplying Houthis with weapons! They immediately deleted their tweets following this announcement, but many people have saved a picture for those tweets before being deleted and since then are circulating them on tweeter...

So we know the U.S. Navy lied when they said the missiles came from Yemen. The RSNF most likely did launch the missiles and used the 'Iranian arms smuggling' as a cover story in case anyone noticed. The U.S. destroyers were never targeted or in danger, but probably did use the occasion to test their anti-missile defenses.

All this set up the false flag, providing Obama and excuse to order the U.S. Navy to Tomahawk the Yemeni coastal radars at the behest of some pissed-off UAE emir (likely a Clinton Foundation donor). Which makes the commander of the USS Nitze, Cmdr. Paul Kaylor, subject to criminal prosecution. He cannot obey an unlawful, unconstitutional order from Obama. In fact, he swore an oath as a commissioned officer to disobey any such order.

An order which is unlawful not only does not need to be obeyed but obeying such an order can result in criminal prosecution of the one who obeys it. Military courts have long held that military members are accountable for their actions even while following orders -- if the order was illegal.

"I was only following orders," has been unsuccessfully used as a legal defense in hundreds of cases (probably most notably by Nazi leaders at the Nuremberg tribunals following World War II). The defense didn't work for them, nor has it worked in hundreds of cases since.

Any order - even if from the president - to attack another country based on a ham-handed false flag is a criminal offense. This attack undoubtedly killed members of the Yemeni Coastal Guard.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Oct 13 2016 6:50 utc | 62

@b | Oct 13, 2016 2:37:50 AM | 60

Thanks, there so many NEW posters in MoA, hard to follow.

Posted by: Jack Smith | Oct 13 2016 6:55 utc | 63

Complexities of alliance in the Near East. Be aware Erdogan's Turkey is allied to the Muslim Brotherhood of Qatar, tied to Hamas and Islamists in the Sinai and Libya. The incursions by Turkey's military into Northern Syria and Iraq are just token to preserve the logistics for military aid to protected extremists/jihadists.

War of words between Erdogan and Iraq's PM Haider al-Abadi ...

Erdogan tells Abadi to 'know his place' | Al Monitor |

Posted by: Oui | Oct 13 2016 7:14 utc | 64

Turkey’s Demands Complicate Battle Plan to Retake Mosul From Islamic State | WSJ |

On the negative side there are indications that Ankara continues to cling to its Islamist and sectarian approach in the Middle East. Erdoğan’s recent remarks to the Saudi Rotana TV station, in which he, according to the transcript from the channel, declared that Mosul should remain Sunni, is a case in point.

Yıldırım is more circumspect in this regard and says “Mosul belongs to the people of Mosul,” but this line is apparently is not enough at this stage to dispel doubts about Turkey’s ultimate intentions. That is probably also one of the reasons why there is an effort to keep Turkey away from the impending operation to liberate Mosul.

[Source: opinion in Hürriyet Daily News]

Posted by: Oui | Oct 13 2016 7:15 utc | 65

Clinton speaks like a political apprentice: Erdoğan

Hillary Clinton must be a political novice for suggesting that she would arm Syrian Kurdish groups in the fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) if she is elected president next month, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has said. “This is a very unfortunate statement,” Erdoğan said. “I regard this as political inexperience.”

Democrat nominee Clinton suggested that she would arm Kurds in Syria and Iraq if she beats Donald Trump for the White House on Nov. 8.

Emphasizing that this region had different sensitivities and that providing weapons to the Syrian Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) would be a very wrong move, he said: “Aren’t you aware that you caused the death of 600,000 people through the weapons you provided? Where is the Universal Declaration of Human Rights? Where is law? Where is the importance of human life?”

As Secretary of State, HRC and PM Erdogan were best of friends to exploit the Arab Uprising in Tunesia, Libya, Egypt and Syria. Hillary became to poster girl of Qatar's Al Jazeera. And funds continued flowing into the foundation ...

Posted by: Oui | Oct 13 2016 7:16 utc | 66

@b | Oct 13, 2016 2:37:50 AM | 60

Thanks b, attent as always ... tough to sift through.

Posted by: Oui | Oct 13 2016 7:18 utc | 67

WTF is really going on in Deir Ez Zor?? Are Syrian or any other, perhaps Russian journalists so incompetent they cant provide a comprehensive info. There is practically no any comprehensive report about what is really going on there. Just a few sentences on Al Masdar of a new ISIS offensive repelled every second week or so. What part of the city is still under govt. control, how many civilians are left in there, is airport operational, are supplies coming in or not? Why SAA abandoned attempts to reach Deir Ez Zor from Palmyra? Will the Russians finally send in some airborne troops as it would be about time. If they wont, then they have sold Deir Ez Zor and its people in a scheme to divide Syria with the US and its vassals.

Posted by: Alesh | Oct 13 2016 7:44 utc | 68

US, Saudi Arabia to grant ISIS terrorists free passage from Mosul to Syria: reports

DAMASCUS, SYRIA (7:00 A.M.) - The U.S. and their Persian Gulf counterpart Saudi Arabia have reportedly agreed to allow an estimated 9,000 Islamic State terrorists free passage from the Iraqi city of Mosul to Syria, a military source told the Russian-based RIA Novosti News Agency on Wednesday.

The RIAN report is in Russian - not sure what the "military source" is. But good to know that the Russians have an eye on this.

Posted by: b | Oct 13 2016 8:48 utc | 70

This has been happening for months, b. A few thousand at the very least have made it to Deir EzZor, but it could be as many as 6,000 or more. The U.S. is secretly moving them by aircraft. Saudi Arabia has been recruiting among them for mercs willing to go to Yemen. They are offering generous pay and promises of land/houses in Syria for their families. That will be in Deir EzZor, of course. Stolen from Syrians. The land records office will undoubtedly go up in flames in the coming months.

One theory for the Deir EzZor SAA bombing was ultimately directed at a follow-on ISIS assault on Syrian radar sites in the mountains and the airport. The idea was to blind them to U.S. (or coalition) aircraft and choppers ferrying ISIS from Mosul directly to Deir EzZor. There's no way ISIS would have agreed to any scheme that involved them driving to Deir EzZor (for obvious reasons). Russia is well aware of the scheme and the some of the SAA-destined Pantsir anti-aircraft systems are probably part of the solution.

Since ISIS failed to capture the entire mountain and airport, the U.S. has been ferrying just the head-choppers (less their families) to the east side of the Euphrates near the city, organizing them in head-chopper camps for a future assault. The bridge bombing was part of protecting the relocated head-choppers from the SAA until the U.S. could help ISIS take over the entire city, including the airport and mountains. That appears to be happening now. Kind of surprising, actually. We expected the U.S. to dust off the failed 'New Syrian Army' scheme and rebrand the relocated Mosul ISIS crew as part of that. It may just be a time thing. As soon as East Ghouta and Aleppo are liberated, Deir EzZor will have everyone's attention. The U.S. is in a rush to claim it for the ISIS relocation program.

Once ISIS has secured everything, the U.S. will arrange the transport of their families temporarily housed in the refugee camps outside Mosul. The U.S. would have already dropped off crates of MANPADs so the head-choppers could protect themselves from Russian aircraft. The insane 'bombing with U.S. approval only' scheme that failed to materialize was also part of this - 'rebel' (=ISIS) areas of Deir EzZor were not to be touched. Since that didn't work out, the U.S. is frantic to prevent Russian bombing (which will surely come).

People much closer to this than me have speculated that there are less than a couple thousand jihadis left in Mosul, and they will just melt away during the assault - only to reappear in Deir EzZor with a little help from the USAF. The assault will involve a massive coalition aerial bombing campaign to give the appearance of fierce fighting and corresponding widespread destruction. This all to cover up the fact that there will be few if any ISIS left to fight there. It will be Jarabulus all over again, except the U.S. is more sensitive to appearances this time. Mosul will be destroyed.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Oct 13 2016 9:38 utc | 71

....U.S. and their Persian Gulf counterpart Saudi Arabia have reportedly agreed to allow an estimated 9,000 Islamic State terrorists free passage from the Iraqi city of Mosul to Syria....

In another words reinforcement in Aleppo? "Stephen Cohen: Warmongering in Washington, Preparation for War in Moscow (Podcast)."

Posted by: Jack Smith | Oct 13 2016 9:40 utc | 72

Saudi anger at Egypt's president al-Sisi

Egypt secures 'alternative oil sources' after Saudi halt: ministry

Egypt has contracted 'foreign suppliers' to provide the required amount of refined oil products for October after Saudi Aramco halted the expected delivery of 700,000 tonnes for this month, the petroleum ministry announced on Tuesday.

Egypt angered its ally on Saturday by voting in favour of a Russian-drafted resolution on the conflict in Syria, which Saudi Arabia had strongly opposed.

    The Russian Federation’s text, by which the Council would have urged an immediate cessation of hostilities, particularly in Aleppo, received a vote of 4 in favour (China, Egypt, Russian Federation, Venezuela) to 9 against (France, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Senegal, Spain, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States), with 2 abstentions (Angola and Uruguay).

Posted by: Oui | Oct 13 2016 9:44 utc | 73

@Jack Smith

Excellent analysis by Stephen Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian Studies at New York University and of politics at Princeton University. I have quoted him before ...

Berlin Stunned By Aggressive NATO Propaganda On Ukraine

Posted by: Oui | Oct 13 2016 9:52 utc | 74

@Oui | Oct 13, 2016 5:52:12 AM | 74

Thanks, bookmarks your site, but I dun trust PBS :-)

Posted by: Jack Smith | Oct 13 2016 9:59 utc | 75

ISIS suffers heavy casualties in failed Deir Ezzor offensive

[T]his attack would not go as planned for the Islamic State, thanks in large-part to the Russian Air Force's nonstop airstrikes over their positions at Al-Hamidiyah and Hawija Al-Saqr.

Think the ISAF (USAF) will come to their 'rescue'?

Posted by: jfl | Oct 13 2016 10:47 utc | 76

@71 pw4

I have all the reverence in the world for your contacts ... but they're all Americans in uniform I imagine. Deep down they gotta believe the USA is invincible. I certainly hope they're wrong on this one. I don't want to see anyone killed, I just want to see the neo-con criminals defeated. I realize that won't happen without some people being killed. As Putin has been at pains to point out of late ... the USA and its droogies brought about all this pain and suffering. Let's hope that the Syrians, Palestinians, Iranians, Iraqis, and the Russians can end their run in Syria.

Posted by: jfl | Oct 13 2016 11:08 utc | 77

@62 pw4

Thanks for the insight on Yemen. It all smelt fishy ... I'm not quite twisted enough to see it your way on my own ... but I'm getting there. Although I'll never have the access to the particulars that you do. Thanks for the tuition.

Posted by: jfl | Oct 13 2016 11:11 utc | 78

PavewayIV | Oct 13, 2016 5:38:06 AM | 71

The U.S. has woven a tangled web indeed; false flags, color revolutions, outright election manipulation of foreign governments; which is why I think the last U.S. election was November 22, 1963.
The circus maximas of the M.E. is just more of the same barbarity, that is endemic in Usians from day one: Plymouth, 1620. Of course 1492 was the real beginning of the 500 year haulicaust in the western hemisphere.
Welldone U.S.; take a bow of shame...

Posted by: V. Arnold | Oct 13 2016 11:40 utc | 79

The US is in the darkest chapters of Animal Farm right now. There seems to be no functioning head, the right hand is fighting and it is fighting the left. One thing is certain, western MSM is in it's death knells. All the kings horses and all the king men will not be able to put it back together again. In one of the leaked Podesta emails American citizens are made to be unaware and compliant. The internal adherence to the false narrative has reached a bizarre and laughable point. How will they accomplish this with 6% trust in media?

Posted by: Gravatomic | Oct 13 2016 12:12 utc | 80

There may be hope (not likely, but) that the other superpower is...the rest of the world.
Think about that. The U.S. is a mere pip of the worlds populations; 309 millions against 8 or 9 billion?
At some point they (others) may actually get it and do something.
There are hints this may be actually happening as I write this; one can hope, no?

Posted by: V. Arnold | Oct 13 2016 12:23 utc | 81

At last a reasonable opinion piece in the Guardian. "A no-fly zone for Aleppo risks a war that could engulf us all". Editors getting cold feet after that nutcase Boris said he is looking at military options.

Posted by: harrylaw | Oct 13 2016 12:31 utc | 82

Nope the stupid Boris Johnson wont stop,

Boris: UK to consider military action on Syria

Posted by: Man | Oct 13 2016 13:40 utc | 83

re HL 82. Jonathan Steele is hardly typical of the Guardian - he's just allowed to have his say from time to time. He's far too sensible, and doesn't correspond to the Guardian's policy.

Posted by: Laguerre | Oct 13 2016 14:34 utc | 84

The full document has been released to Judicial Watch earlier this year via FOIA request

Nov 20, 2015 The One Thing You Need to Know About ISIS, 'Americans please wake up!'

Posted by: Agent76 | Oct 13 2016 14:45 utc | 85


It didn't take long to see Iran respond.

Iran has deployed a fleet of warships to the Gulf of Aden, the republic's naval commander has confirmed. The deployment follows US cruise missile strikes on Yemeni positions thought to be under Houthi rebel control.

The Iranian Navy has sent the warships to international waters for a mission that includes entering the area off the southern coast of Yemen, Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari confirmed on Wednesday. The area is among the world’s busiest maritime trade routes.

“The fleet will provide security to sea ways for Iranian vessels and protect Iran’s interests on the high seas,” Sayyari told Press TV.

“The 34th Fleet is comprised of the Bushehr logistic vessel and Alborz destroyer, and will conduct a three-month mission.”

Amazing how, just days ago the US was 'rethinking' its support of SA in Yemen.

Once again, white man speak with forked tongue. Watch the folks at home eat this up like candy. We finally might get the chance to have a go at Iran!! Woo-hoo!!!

Posted by: woogs | Oct 13 2016 15:02 utc | 86

PS: And just before the election, too!!

Posted by: woogs | Oct 13 2016 15:04 utc | 87


Posted by: okie farmer | Oct 13 2016 15:13 utc | 88

The only thing we couldn't figure out was what kind of false flag the U.S. would use to Tomahawk Yemen because nobody would believe the Houthis would be dumb enough to fire on a U.S. missile cruiser.
Do you really think the Houthis have any command and control? Anybody could have launched that missile without consulting central command, if such a thing exists.

Not that I'm saying that they did, you may well be right. But you have to have a realistic idea of how the Houthis function.

Posted by: Laguerre | Oct 13 2016 15:15 utc | 89

@60 b... thanks...

when i saw this post from take me on the previous thread, i thought they including take me might be all the same person..

"Why does MOA intelligentsia ignore the pure genius of Cdrake, Mgolani, Mm. Pissant and Chuck McQueer? (Did I get them all...) THESE POSTS ARE LIFE. So much truth. And wickedly clever. Well done. Whomever you are...

Posted by: Take Me | Oct 12, 2016 12:32:47 AM | 141"

Posted by: james | Oct 13 2016 15:41 utc | 90

Nothing surprising about such moves (thx to b for pointing to them), ISIS - Daesh - ex- al-Nusra, etc. (all of the same ilk) are mercenaries, with some recruitement of ‘lost’ ppl from the West etc.

Djhadist brigades, a trans-national, global force, with its ‘old’ roots in Chechnya and Afghanistan (mujahideen) are now on front stage.

The warriors, as an informal army - can be actioned or moved from place to place, though idk if this last move of troops, to xyz front will work.

The djihadists are super cheap, and can be manipulated and controlled, or afterwards, the US+poodles PTB imagine, eliminated, or forced to play a compliant subservient role (oil revenues, total control of society by violence, sharia law, etc.) granting them the position of local repressive dom potentates while obeying their ‘ovelords’ grinning in gltizy towers.

E. Zuesse, Feb. 2015, suggests that in KSA two factions are operating.

For the Royals facing the Ulema (essential for control of population thru religion and meagre or at least semi-decent handouts) it became necessary to denounce, pursue, etc. apostates, non conforming muslims, drinkers, gays, etc. Thus the KSA PTB Royals donated massively to the spread of Wahhabism outside of KSA, so as to legitimise and protect themselves from interior strife and censure, attacks by the Ulema. (Heh, two controlling mafia type orgs fighting to balance the power.)

Posted by: Noirette | Oct 13 2016 16:59 utc | 91

Anyone cares to speculate or expand, Sergey Lavrov said on Wed, Oct 12 he and John Kerry are to meet Saturday in Lausanne, Switzerland to revive hopes for peace in Syria?

Could it be Putin backing off or US buying time to rush reenforcement to Syria?

Posted by: Jack Smith | Oct 13 2016 17:13 utc | 92

Moon of Alabama's story of the good guy beheaders of Aleppo and the disinformation campaign was covered by Corbett at Boiling Frogs Post. And there are reasons why we should be outraged by the situation and our media's coverage of it.

Posted by: Curtis | Oct 13 2016 18:00 utc | 93

World News | Thu Oct 13, 2016 | 11:52am EDT
Exclusive: Obama, aides expected to weigh Syria military options on Friday

U.S. President Barack Obama and his top foreign policy advisers are expected to meet on Friday to consider their military and other options in Syria as Syrian and Russian aircraft continue to pummel Aleppo and other targets, U.S. officials said.

Posted by: schlub | Oct 13 2016 18:13 utc | 94

The Militants and their families started evacuating Qodsiyeh in the Northwestern parts of Damascus, according to an agreement with the Syrian army.

More than 17 buses were prepared to take out more than 100 gunmen from Qodsiyeh in addition to members of their families towards the city of Idlib.

Other reports suggested that the militants from al-Hamah are also evacuating the town which brings the number of evacuees to 640 gunmen in the two suburbs.

Thousands of civilians in Qodsiyeh had taken to the streets for several days in the past two weeks to urge militants to leave the town.

"Several thousands of civilians continued to rally against the deployment of anti-government fighters in Qodsiyeh," sources said.

Sources in the peace committees in Qodsiyeh said last week that based on the agreement, "the terrorists who don’t intend to surrender their weapons would leave the town, while others who are willing to remain in the city and would lay down their arms would be pardoned".

On Tuesday, over 200 militants in Qodsiyeh's neighboring town of Elhameh ended fight against the Syrian army and the legal government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and tuned themselves in to the government authorities.

Reports said on Saturday that the Syrian army and its allies regained control of the strategic town of Elhameh in Western Ghouta of Damascus after several days of fierce clashes with the terrorist groups.......

Posted by: Jack Smith | Oct 13 2016 18:26 utc | 95

Avaaz has just renewed their petition from last year to create a no fly zone for Syria, exactly what the Neocons have wanted all along. However there is a counter petition to persuade them to cancel their petition. Would you want to help promote this? Here is the link:

Posted by: RamboDave | Oct 13 2016 18:51 utc | 96

#71 PW4

Great post, as near always.

Your ideas go further than mine - I wouldn't have presumed that they might be airlifting the Daeshis to keep them safe from interdiction en route.

Just two things I am not sure about.

The MANPADS - how really useful are they against the Russians? I can see the Syrians, very short on precision weapons and therefore needing to fly low to strike, might be seriously frustrated. Likewise the Su-25s which also aren't high-altitude strike planes. But, against Russian Su-34, or Su-24 and Su-22s, aren't MANPADS just a nuisance ie. rasing the financial cost of attacks by necessitating using larger (bigger kill zone) or more precise weapons? In short, I can't see how MANPADs can seriously protect against a determined and major RASF effort from 15000ft or above.

The second thing is the symbolic destruction of near-empty Mosul pre liberation by the actual Iraqis. USAF certainly has the means to get this done - annihilation of civilian cities is their absolute historic specialty; no one in the world does it as well. However, as a propaganda move, it's feels like a double-edged sword at best. Wouldn't what Americans would directly do in Mosul exactly - and very visibly - what Russians are supposedly doing in East Aleppo?

In other words, why couldn't the liberation of Mosul plausibly go relatively smoothly (with less than 1000 Daeshis around, even the civilian uprising could plausibly lynch them all?), and then blame the ease of this on "the mysterious ways of the terrorists".

Posted by: Quadriad | Oct 13 2016 20:46 utc | 97

Excellent analysis! It sticks with looking at the facts at hand and using history and the statements of the US and its allies as a guide. This is what sets MoA apart from many of the other blogs that offer analysis of geopolitical happenings. MoA is refreshingly free of the wild leaps of imagination presented as "facts" that mar some otherwise decent blogs. On another note, Hassan Nasrallah is one of the sharpest politicians anywhere and is quite clear eyed about where the geopolitical world is at. When George W. Bush's memoirs went on sale Nasrallah was using material from the book a week after its public release.

Posted by: Temporarily Sane | Oct 13 2016 21:00 utc | 98

Today's secret password: Ratnik!
remember it.
Probably russian for 'rat'.
Russia: Black Sea Fleet Marines test new equipment before possible Syria deployment..

Footage emerged of Russian Black Sea Fleet Marines training with new military equipment, including the BTR 82 Armoured Personnel Carrier (APC) and the Ratnik infantry combat suit at a naval training ground near Sevastopol, Thursday.

Posted by: schlub | Oct 13 2016 21:52 utc | 99

imho the gifting of these MANPADS is anything but strategic, which is btw the official story line, that these weapons are necessary to bring about a more level battlefield for the "rebels". But really, they're being gifted only to sow more chaos, to turn the country into dust while taking out unnecessary numbers of innocents as well.

It all works just fine for the side handing these things out. No matter where they're fired it's a Syrian who suffers, it's a Syrian's home that crumbles down; and yes, it's all just another mercenary sacking of the "insurgent horde". A different day a different proxy

Posted by: sejomoje | Oct 13 2016 22:09 utc | 100

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