Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
September 04, 2018

Syria - UN, U.S. Try To Delay Idlib's Liberation

The United Nations Special Envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura and his Special Advisor, Jan Egeland, held a press conference (vid) today. They appealed to the Russian President Putin and President Erdogan of Turkey to find a solution for Idleb province that would avoid the upcoming Syrian army attack on the province ruled by al-Qaeda.

De Mistura claimed that there are 2.9 million civilians in the area. That number is nonsense. In 2011 Idleb governorate had a population of 1.5 million. Several hundred thousands of those, Christians, Alawites, government employees, soldiers and their families, fled when in 2015 al-Qaeda and its Free Syrian Army allies attacked and occupied it. Some new people, 10-20,000 Chinese Uyghurs as well as other foreign Jihadis, arrived. But their total numbers were in the ten thousands, not in the hundred thousands. When in 2017 the Syrian army liberated Aleppo and then east-Ghouta and other areas, about 50,000 people in total asked to be put on buses and to be shipped off to Idleb. The total number of people in the province and the attached areas held by the Jihadis must be well under 2 million.

As for the number of terrorists in Idleb de Mistura only spoke of some 10,000 of the al-Qaeda aligned Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), the former Jabhat Al-Nusra Front. But the total number of radical Jihadists in the governorate is much larger. There are two large groups of "rebels" in Idleb.

Turkey’s favourite is the NLF, which is led by Fadlallah al-Hajji, a Muslim Brotherhood ally. The NLF includes Turkey-friendly Islamists like Ahrar al-Sham, the Noureddine al-Zengi Brigades, Failaq al-Sham, Jaish al-Ahrar, and groups that fought under the Free Syrian Army banner, like the Victory Army and the 2nd Coastal Division.

Big but brittle, the NLF is held together by Turkish sponsorship and shared enemies: al-Assad’s government, Syrian Kurdish groups, and hardline jihadists.

These ain't your friendly neighbors but brutal Islamists. Ahrar al Sham is a recognized terrorist group founded by a senior al-Qaeda veteran. The al-Zengi brigades became famous when they published a video which showed them beheading a wounded 12 year old boy.

The second, larger, and even more brutal group is the alliance around HTS under its leader Abu Mohammed al-Golani. It includes several thousand Uyghur and Chechen fighters:

Some of al-Golani’s jihadist critics, many of whom are Jordanians and Palestinians, have gathered in a pro-al-Qaeda splinter faction known as Hurras al-Deen.
Hurras al-Deen is accompanied by a number of small foreign-led factions close to Tahrir al-Sham, including the Chechens of Junoud al-Sham. The so-called Islamic State also operates clandestine cells in the area, hunted by both the NLF and Tahrir al-Sham.

Jaish al-Ezzah, a Free Syrian Army-flagged faction based near Hama, has not joined the Turkish-backed NLF like many of its former comrades. Some see the group as a covert Tahrir al-Sham ally ..
In the western part of the enclave, Jisr al-Shughour has emerged as a stronghold of the Turkestan Islamic Party, TIP, a group of Uyghur Chinese jihadists.

HTS and other Jihadis have rejected Turkish requests to dissolve themselves. When the liberation of Idleb starts the Turkish influenced NLF will join HTS and other Jihadis in the fight:

[T]o the Syrian government, Idlib’s rebels are all terrorists pure and simple – and the Idlib fighters themselves also see al-Assad as their primary enemy, transcending factional divides. Aba-Zeid insisted that if Russia green-lights a Syrian government offensive on Idlib, no matter how the various groups view Turkey or each other, they would all “prioritise repelling the attack”.

Mustafa Sejari, a leader in the Ankara-backed Moutassem Brigade, agreed. “This is the last fortress of the Syrian opposition and preserving it is everyone’s obligation,” he said.

HTS and its allies must have some 15-25,000 fighters, the groups aligned with Turkey may have a slightly lower number, some are locals and they are probably less willing to fight. In total the Syrian army is likely to face a force of some 30-45,000 capable and willing fighters.

What these groups currently lack is the supply of weapons and ammunition. In August 2018 not one anti-tank guided missiles was used against the Syrian army. The U.S. officially ended its supplies for the "rebels". The Gulf states have washed their hands over Idelb. It is no longer their fight. Turkey also seems to have stopped weapon supplies. Without constant resupply of anti-tank weapons and especially artillery ammunition the "rebel" groups will soon run out of the basic necessities for waging war.

But their are still voiced who call for further arming the Jihadis. The "eminent scholar" and warmonger Anthony Cordesman of CSIS just advised to re-up such supplies:

If anything, the U.S. should begin now to evaluate the kind of aid it might give any renewed Sunni or other rebels faction both now in Idlib or later.

This is in line with the idea of U.S. administration officials who want to "create quagmires" for Syria and Russia.

The New York Times did its best to push for that with an op-ed of some "democratic" Jihadi fan-girl and a propagandistic "news" piece on Idleb that took the reader to the 21st paragraphs to learn that the province is ruled by al-Qaeda:

H.T.S. has controlled much of Idlib since 2015, acting as de facto governmental authority, facilitating trade across the long border with Turkey and organizing aid deliveries.

The "de-facto governmental authority" HTS is known to publicly execute women accused of adultery. It "facilitates trade" by taxing it to finance its terrorist activities. It "organizing aid deliveries" by talking half of any aid that is brought in. That is the reason why the Inspector General of USAID recently shut down its aid program in Idleb.

If the U.S. wants to "create a quagmire" in Idleb it will need Turkish support to restart its arming of the terrorists. Today U.S. emissaries arrived in Ankara likely to offer a deal:

United States Special Envoy for Syria James Jeffrey held talks with Defense Minister Hulusi Akar and Deputy Foreign Minister Sedat Önal in the Turkish capital on Sept. 4.

Jeffrey had served as the U.S. Ambassador to Ankara between the years of 2008 and 2010 and thus have great knowledge on the importance of Turkish-American ties.
The top three issues in regards to the current situation on Syrian soil that Turkish officials discussed with Jeffrey were the looming Idlib operation by Syria-Russia, delays in the implementation of the Manbij deal and efforts to speed up political settlement in Syria.

On Idlib, Turkey and the U.S. are on the same page and have expressed that a massive operation into the overpopulated province would create an unprecedented humanitarian tragedy if civilians are not separated from terrorists. Both countries think al-Nusra and affiliated groups should be eliminated but this should be done carefully and without civilian casualties.

The de Mistura press conference today made the same point and was likely coordinated with these talks.

But neither de Mistura nor James Jeffrey nor any Turkish official have presented an idea of how to achieve that. Turkey was given several month to solve the Jihadist problem in Idleb by talks. It tried and failed.

The current situation can not continue. It is unconscionable to leave the 1-2 million civilians in Syria under the rule of al-Qaeda. HTS is just now arresting hundreds of civilians who want to reconcile with the government. It builds gallows as warning to not talk to the government. It executes those who do and publishes pictures of it.

Two UN Security Council resolutions demand to fight the "Al-Nusra Front (ANF), and all other individuals, groups, undertakings, and entities associated with Al Qaeda or ISIL, and other terrorist groups" and "to eradicate the safe haven they have established over significant parts of Syria ...".

How is that supposed to be done without fighting them? Will the U.S. offer to resettle HTS and the other Jihadis in Wyoming? Will Turkey give them apartments in Antalya? No? Then what?

U.S. President Trump added another warning against the Idelb operation:

Donald J. Trump @realDonaldTrump - 22:20 utc - 3 Sep 2018
President Bashar al-Assad of Syria must not recklessly attack Idlib Province. The Russians and Iranians would be making a grave humanitarian mistake to take part in this potential human tragedy. Hundreds of thousands of people could be killed. Don’t let that happen!

(Note: Instead of the "animal Assad" Trump used in an earlier tweet he now properly addressed Syria's president.)

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Dunford, also chipped in:

“We don’t see any way that significant military operations are going to be beneficial to the people of Syria,” Dunford told reporters during a trip to Athens. “If major military operations take place we can expect humanitarian catastrophe and I think we would all want to see that be avoided,” ...
Pressed about the best course, Dunford said: “More of a discussion between the Turks, the Syrians and the Russians at more precise counterterrorism operations — as opposed to large scale conventional operations — would be the right approach.”

The U.S. is not a friend of the people of Syria. If it gives advice the Syrian government and its allies should do the opposite. Any delay of the liberation of Idleb will strengthen their enemy. They should launch the operation as soon as possible.

Today the Syrian army began to prepare the battlefield for the upcoming fight. Some 30 bombing attacks were flown by the Syrian and Russian air force. The targets were depots and headquarters of the Jihadis.  Removing their supplies is the easiest way to shorten the fight and to thereby prevent unnecessary civilian casualties.

Posted by b on September 4, 2018 at 18:08 UTC | Permalink

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I cannot wait until this war is over. This war will be a game changer where the entire middle east and surrounding countries.

Posted by: shoes | Sep 4 2018 18:26 utc | 1

Agreed. Too bad all the quagmire-deploying Western "diplomats" aren't in Idleb with their jihadis as their evil work is undone.

Posted by: JC | Sep 4 2018 18:57 utc | 2

Well done, b. That's pretty right. The question in my mind is whether the jihadis are going to to collapse, as happened in East Aleppo, Ghouta, and Deraa, or fight to the end, if they lack arms. The Syrians have to come up with a non-bloody solution. I would have thought either pushing over the border into Turkey, or if Turkey refuses, camps in no-mans-land, where they can live.

Posted by: Laguerre | Sep 4 2018 18:58 utc | 3

It's all so complicated isn't it? If only there was some central list telling us which civilians we should care about, be horrified on their behalf and donate to (Idlib, Rohingya); and which ones we don't give a shit about (Yemen, Gaza, Libya, well all of Africa actually). I mean, c'mon! There's only so much compassion to go round! < /s >

Posted by: Ross | Sep 4 2018 19:12 utc | 4

Evidently there is the danger that the US will go to war, including against Russia, provoked by another false-flag chemical attack. Personally, I rather discount that. Trump, even though surrounded by militaristic neo-cons, likes his life-style, big bangs are ok, spending the rest of his few remaining years in a nuclear bunker, no. So no war with Russia, whatever the neo-cons want.

Posted by: Laguerre | Sep 4 2018 19:17 utc | 5

Looks like the rubber meets the road in Idlib for the US. Either put up or shut up. Either choice won't be nice.

Posted by: ken | Sep 4 2018 19:20 utc | 6

To Laguerre at #3

Camps in no-man's land? This would tie down a large portion of Syria's forces to surround these "camps" so that the Orcs do not re-infiltrate society, launch suicide attacks, etc. They would also be a risk of a stab-in-the-back move against Syria should a war with the Zionist Entity develop.

A place is considered a "no-man's land" if the environment is so harsh that it won't support many people to live there. In Syria, this would be barren, trackless desert. Who would have to continually supply these camps with food and the other necessities of life?

And where does it come from that Syria is obligated to find a "non-bloody" solution. The Orcs of Idlib tend to be the worst of the worst; many of these have already rejected opportunities to reconcile with the Syrian government. All of these bastards SERIOUSLY NEED TO DIE and the Idlib battlefield is the logical place to make this happen.

Antoinetta III

Posted by: Antoinetta III | Sep 4 2018 19:22 utc | 7

Trying to back Putin into a corner is probably not the smartest thing the Holier-Than-Thou Christian Colonial vampires have ever done. I hope they're expecting the MSM's Keyboard Warriors to save them from the blowback.
"Israel" has promised to redefine "stupid" by conducting a few suicide missions too...

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Sep 4 2018 19:22 utc | 8

Is it possible to treat Trump's tweets as actually acceptance of the final attack rather than an attempt to stop it?

Posted by: mdroy | Sep 4 2018 19:29 utc | 9

It's interesting how the US created Al Qaeda to use against the Soviets in Afghanistan, then used them again in the Balkans, and then Al Qaeda committed a terrible attack against the US, then the US used them again in Libya and Syria.

Posted by: NoOneYouKnow | Sep 4 2018 19:32 utc | 10

thanks b... selling the idea that the usa, or their coalition is interested in the well being of the ordinary syrian is a real line of bullshit... the facts on the ground say the exact opposite... support for moderate headchoppers has been on tap since 2011 and the only change is that the west under the usa's leadership can't package the moderate headchoppers in idlib as a warm and cuddly group as they have done in the past...

so what is the difference between the bullshit about the usa going after isis, but at the same time the usa has a problem with syria/russia/iran going after al qaeda? the hypocrisy coming from the west is really too much to stomach..

as for turkeys game here and anything that gets worked out with the usa at this point - they are both up to no good.. that has been apparent from day 1... russia/syria and iran need to watch how that unfolds here.. never mind assad getting taken out.. what happens if erdogan gets taken out? who blames who for that? it will be a repeat of zakharchenko being taken out with each side blaming the other... what a coincidence porky wasn't taken out too..

again the overreaching question is does trump lead and call the shots with regard the military, or do the neo cons? is trump a sane person, or is he in jeopardy if he decides no war or fireworks display for the neo cons?? i don't know that this question has been resolved.. is he leading the usa? maybe as figurehead, but that might be about it..

so, do we get to ww3 here and if not, why? if so - why? i think most here know the answer to my last question.. with neo cons running the show and the military/financial complex running the show - my guess is we continue on down this road to war between the major powers... i don't see much of any sanity guiding the usa and the west at this point.. it is essentially the same as it has been in international affairs for some time now since the break up of the ussr.. top dog wants to be top dog and will not accept a multi polar world no matter what... got to love the exceptional nation for warmongering 24/7 with innocent people dying horrific deaths on a regular basis and the msm cheerleading, lying and lying by omission 24/7... the scene here is the same and i can't see any redemption coming any time soon based on the usa's leadership role at this point.. quite the opposite actually...

Posted by: james | Sep 4 2018 19:32 utc | 11

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Dunford, also chipped in:
“We don’t see any way that significant military operations are going to be beneficial to the people of Syria,” Dunford told reporters during a trip to Athens. “If major military operations take place we can expect humanitarian catastrophe and I think we would all want to see that be avoided,” ... ... Pressed about the best course, Dunford said: “More of a discussion between the Turks, the Syrians and the Russians at more precise counterterrorism operations — as opposed to large scale conventional operations — would be the right approach.”
I don't know about anyone else but Dunford's statement seems to be saying that the terrorists should not expect any help from the US military. I take the "significant military operations" to be a reference to any operations by the US military. As for the rest, I think he's saying that provided there are no massed artillery fires, etc., then there is no reason that the US military would become involved. So, if the Syrians/Russians do in Idlib what they actually did in Daraa earlier this year, the US military will do nothing. Idlib might be a tougher nut to crack but provided their actions are proportionate and reasonable, the Syrians and Russians won't be interrupted.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Sep 4 2018 19:36 utc | 12

The entire reason Russia is in Syria in force is to destroy terrorists before they reach Russia.

Note that Syria and Russia have both shown the world textbook examples of how to defuse a hostile environment and how to offer amnesty to those fighters who are prepared mend their ways and who have not been witnessed to have acted beyond redemption. Many of the fighters in Idlib are those who rejected the offer of amnesty.

The humanitarian ideal in this situation is for the axis to use its utmost ingenuity to destroy utterly all those terrorists who are irredeemable, and to do this with the absolute least harm to the civilians. And this is what we will see.

For the US and UN to weep crocodile tears now in a plea to allow these terrorists to continue to live in and damage this world is unspeakably vile - but sadly not surprising. The only surprise here is that Madeleine Albright has not been drafted to say a few words on behalf of the terrorists.

Posted by: Grieved | Sep 4 2018 19:36 utc | 13

re Antoinetta 7

Camps in no-man's land? This would tie down a large portion of Syria's forces to surround these "camps"
The Syrians have shown a tendency to prefer non-bloody solutions. Ship the jihadis out, rather than force them to fight to the death. As Idlib is the last, what is the non-bloody solution? Normally, I would have thought, push them over the border, and let the Turks eliminate them. But if the Turks refuse to let them in, what to do?

Posted by: Laguerre | Sep 4 2018 19:42 utc | 14

@13 grieved quote "the fighters in Idlib are those who rejected the offer of amnesty."

grieved, do you think those fighters are interested in the well being of the citizens of syria? please tell me why the usa and the west want to give off the impression these same fighters are interested in teh well being of the people of syria, because that is the bullshit line they have going 24/7 in the western press at present..

Posted by: james | Sep 4 2018 19:52 utc | 15

"The United Nations Special Envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura and his Special Advisor, Jan Egeland"

Jan Egeland?


Ylvis made a song about that UN "peacemaker" Jan Egeland that was sort of funny, if it had not been for the fact that the "humanitarian" norwegian organisation Egeland is boss of now only give help to the jihadi side of the conflict in Syria.

Ylvis - Jan Egeland [Official music video HD]

Posted by: Trond | Sep 4 2018 19:53 utc | 16

At this point, it should be fairly obvious that the only way to go in Idlib is to shoot every single man with a gun. Those who don't want to be mistaken for a lunatic jihadi can drop their weapons and run when the SAA comes.
The only sad part is that their Western politicians and journalists enablers aren't down there to be mowed down with the scum they support.

Posted by: Clueless Joe | Sep 4 2018 20:04 utc | 17

@ 12 Ghost Ship
I agree, that is also what I heard, not as bellicose as usual and that is a good sign.

But these creatures, the irredeemable vile sh@ts , they need to go to hell. Certainly Russia will not risk having them near its borders; were China not interested in getting rid of some of its homegrown Jihadis?
Unfortunately it will probably become bloody, Raqqa bloody. The problem is that the orcs will not let civilians leave, and who are the real civilians?
Turkey made another mess here and Erdogan cant solve it, sigh!

Posted by: Den Lille Abe | Sep 4 2018 20:10 utc | 18

re James

again the overreaching question is does trump lead and call the shots with regard the military, or do the neo cons?
The position I've tried to maintain is that it is not as simple as that. In principle he's a warmonger, bash anyone who does America down. That's why he's surrounded by war-cons. But his real interest is his weekends at Mar-a-Lago, a cheese-burger and early to bed, if there aren't some young thighs to fondle. A real war would mean weekends in Washington watching screens, like Obama, if not the rest of his years in a nuclear bunker, if war with Russia. That's not what he wants. So a big bang in Syria is fine, the prospect of a quagmire in Syria is not.

Posted by: Laguerre | Sep 4 2018 20:18 utc | 19

@19 laguerre... thanks.. trump might not want war, but i am not sure how much of a say he has in it all at this point.. he probably doesn't want the mueller investigation either, but it is being forced on him regardless.. i think the same deal is happening here... the fireworks last april just wasn't enough for the warmongers.. they are in biz 24/7 regardless of what trump wants.. that is how i see it at this point..

Posted by: james | Sep 4 2018 20:26 utc | 20


Concur with you.

Posted by: CarlD | Sep 4 2018 20:29 utc | 21

re den lille abe 18

But these creatures, the irredeemable vile sh@ts , they need to go to hell. ... Unfortunately it will probably become bloody, Raqqa bloody.
That's precisely the opposite of what the Syrians have chosen to do so far. Ship them out to Idlib has been the sign so far.

Posted by: Laguerre | Sep 4 2018 20:31 utc | 23

Seriously, does anyone get the impression that neither of the interested parties, besides Assad and the Syrian people, really give a flying f### about ending this war?

Too much $ being made by the forces that could end this BS tomorrow, that's what I believe.

Perpetual warfare is a great money maker.. And, we all live in a world today where the making of profits is the driving force...

I'm waiting for one of the drivers in world affairs, to chamnge my mind!

Posted by: ben | Sep 4 2018 20:32 utc | 24

And Daesh has called their air force:

Posted by: Gesine Hammerling | Sep 4 2018 20:38 utc | 25

Good news for the pussygrabber.

Historically, prostitutes ARE permitted entry into the White House.

Jim Guckert aka Jeff Gannon, a $1200 per weekend "top" visited the Dubya Bush White House dozens of times and spent the night twelve times.


Posted by: fastfreddy | Sep 4 2018 20:41 utc | 26


Israeli jets to Homs Governorate.

Five missiles struck the Wadi Al-‘Ayoun area.

Posted by: fastfreddy | Sep 4 2018 20:46 utc | 27

153 kilometers between Idlib and Homs.

Who is Israel going after? Syrian Civilians?

Posted by: fastfreddy | Sep 4 2018 20:51 utc | 28

re James

the fireworks last april just wasn't enough for the warmongers
You could be right, but war against Russia, with the prospect of nuclear, is a big decision. The warmongers may hesitate.

Posted by: Laguerre | Sep 4 2018 20:52 utc | 29

@29 laguerre.. the fact it has gone this far shows you the types who are running the usa at this point..

Posted by: james | Sep 4 2018 20:54 utc | 30

>>>> Den Lille Abe | Sep 4, 2018 4:10:04 PM | 18

But these creatures, the irredeemable vile sh@ts , they need to go to hell.
They most probably will. Looking at the topography of Idlib, it's not easy ground to defend when the attacker has air supremacy, and I suspect that's why the Syrians/Russians have left it until last. The SAA/Russians will be able to pick off town after town fairly easily pushing the terrorists back towards Idlib city itself and the Turkish Army will most likely unwillingly provide the blocking forces to keep the terrorists in Idlib. The fight for Idlib might be bloody but that only covers an area of about 13 square kilometers, about a third the size of Raqqa. As for who the Turkish regime will allow to relocate, it'll be TIP and that'll be about it. As for the rest, FUKUS might whine a bit but do they really want 70,000 jihadists at large who hate the west as much as they hate Assad, Iran and Russia, so FUKUS will make a lot of noise and that'll be it meanwhile the Russian will do what they do best, clean up the west's mess. No western politician wants another 9/11 in their country and the US military doesn't want the Russians supplying MANPADs to the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Sep 4 2018 21:11 utc | 31

It is quite clear that what is left in Idleb is worthless. All terrorism assets of value, including the White Helmets, were evacuated well before the offensive. What remains in Idleb are only the dumbest terrorists who will not last long, especially when even the armament supplies by the Coalition of the Lovers of Terrorism (COLT) were cut. But the offensive will still be milked to its maximum propaganda value by the coalition’s bleeding heart media, using studio productions of “death and suffering of childrenTM”.

Israel, US and the Western vassals have created a global terrorism network, which initially appeared to be a network of secret prisons. What it turned out to be is a network of selection and filtering sites: the extremists, the crazies, the killers who can be turned to good use are being re-educated, trained and armed for attacks on those who find themselves on the path of Israel’s expansion. Only the unusable terrorists are tortured, droned, or delivered to Western Europe to be sacrificed for acts of terrorism to scare the domestic population into obidience.

This is how post-modern terrorism operates.

Posted by: Kiza | Sep 4 2018 21:13 utc | 32

It doesn't matter what the USA, Israel or France will do, nothing can save the moderate headchoppers in Idlib if Turkey doesn't intervene.

So Turkey what will you do now ? The game is up, time to choose a side.

Posted by: redrooster | Sep 4 2018 21:15 utc | 33

Trump needn't worry, the Liberation Offensive's very well planned and not anywhere near being "reckless."

What to do with reconciling terrorists not from al-Qaeda or Daesh is a good question. Many have been directly inducted into the SAA to serve a tour-of-duty to prove loyalty. Syria/Russia have set up an agency that allows for reentry into the Syrian polity through various mechanisms, but I don't know the specifics. DiMistura's plea goes against his UNSC's Resolution and further damages the UN's reputation and credibility, which is probably worse than at any other time in its history.

As I pointed out several times over the past weekend, the Outlaw US Empire won't be leaving Syria unless its forcefully pushed out--they will prove to be the hardest of the terrorist forces to remove. They must be moved on soon before they can consolidate their gains further. I believe the war within Ukraine will be relaunched to complicate Russia's options. How the Iraqi government formation pans out also has the potential to complicate things as Abadi's shown himself to be just another Comprador.

Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 4 2018 21:22 utc | 34

Sending and gathering all the Islamist parasites to Edlib has always been Syria's plan.
The idea was to force Turkey into a dilemma. If Turkey supports these parasites then they have to protect them from destruction by allowing them inside Turkey. That would create a serious security issue inside Turkey. If they abandon them to their fate under Russia and Syria bombings then they have to expect retaliation from their numerous supporters inside Turkey.
Turkey is now in a bind set up by Syria and Russia. When it could normally count on the USA for support, now the USA is conditionning its support to a flip out of Turkey from its alliance with Russia.
The only solution of this issue and the Kurdish issue for Erdogan is to reconcile with Bashar al Assad. That does not seem to be happening soon.
Therefore the outcome of the war in Edlib may set the end of Erdogan's neo-ottoman ambitions in Syria and the region.

Posted by: Virgile | Sep 4 2018 21:26 utc | 35

>>>> Gesine Hammerling | Sep 4, 2018 4:29:44 PM | 22

Jisr Al-Shughour is 35 miles from the end of the runway at Khmeimim Air Base. With the tempo at which the RuAF can operate the occupiers of Jisr Al-Shughour (mostly TIP) are getting off lightly at the moment. BTW, Idlib City is just over fifty miles away.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Sep 4 2018 21:28 utc | 36

Unfortunately, at least one pro-Syria group has published on Twitter pictures of men sentenced to hang in Iran, not Syria, and were called out for it, but not before they got retweeted. Not the way to win the information war!

Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 4 2018 21:37 utc | 37

Will Idlib collapse when Syria attacks? I think so but i'am not sure.

Posted by: Laguerre | Sep 4 2018 21:48 utc | 38

The US can spout whatever nonsense it likes as long as it doesn't activate the ISIS Air Force in defense of its "rebels".

Posted by: worldblee | Sep 4 2018 22:02 utc | 39

Welcome news: Qatar and Jordan have ceased media support for White Helmet terrorists.

Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 4 2018 22:03 utc | 40

"'We don't see any way that significant military operations are going to be beneficial to the people of Syria,' Dunford told reporters during a trip to Athens."
Wow, so why they are preparing a new major escalation there? Since when does the people of Syria matter to an u.s. General? Have I missed some conversion?

It looks like a perfect storm approaching mankind. Everything is set to start a disaster which could engulf the whole world.

Posted by: Pnyx | Sep 4 2018 22:10 utc | 41

redrooster @33


I suspect they'll throw in Manjib as a sweetner too. And US trade sanctions will evaporate.

Turkey could point to Russia/Syria's acceptance of Israel's occupation the Golan Heights - an occupation that is meant to protect civilians!

Next few weeks will be very interesting.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Sep 4 2018 22:13 utc | 42

Jackrabbit @42

Secretary Pompeo's Call With Turkish Foreign Minister Cavusoglu

Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
September 4, 2018

The below is attributable to Spokesperson Heather Nauert:‎

Secretary Michael R. Pompeo spoke today with Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and both agreed that any Assad regime military offensive in Idlib would be an unacceptable, reckless escalation of the conflict in Syria. The Secretary also stressed the importance of Turkey releasing Pastor Andrew Brunson. The Secretary ‎and Foreign Minister committed to continued discussions to resolve the matter and address other issues of common concern.

Posted by: redrooster | Sep 4 2018 22:29 utc | 43

I notice that none of these major Western actors, like the US, UK and France and their puppet allies in the media are ever out there begging the Saudis and their 'arab coalition' of mercenaries to consider the poor people of Yemen and bewailing all the suffering of the millions of civilians in Yemen

Rewrite of Dunford: "We don’t see any way that significant military operations are going to be beneficial to the people of Yemen...”

that'll be the day!

Posted by: michaelj72 | Sep 4 2018 22:31 utc | 44

So tired of the "what does Trump want" bullshit. How many times are we going to ride that merry-go-round? He wants to SERVE the establishment, stroke his ego and make BANK from his service just like the others. He was installed by the War Party to do just that: SERVE. Everything that seems otherwise is misdirection.

Misdirection / propaganda / distractions = squashing dissent = a FREE HAND for the neolibcons that rule the West.

Watch what they DO not what they SAY.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Sep 4 2018 22:34 utc | 45

@31 Well put Ghost Ship. There arent 56 options here for Turkey. Its the end of the line for the more hard core elements, unless it pulls a White Helmets type evacuation like in Daraa..

Posted by: Lozion | Sep 4 2018 22:35 utc | 46

Sorry to play devil's advocate but if you wage war, aren't you supposed to make it as difficult as possible for the enemy to accomplish their objectives at every step? In contrast, the US buildup in, and occupation of, E Syria has been contested by little more than tongue-wagging from Ms. Zakharova--which, if anything, only plays well for Trump domestically. Much reference has been made to potentially vulnerable American supply lines through Iraqi Kurdistan, but we haven't seen them have much difficulty with that. Seems the Borg still retains some collective memory of whom to bribe in Iraq from the last occupation.

Pretending your enemy is really your friend only gets you so far.

Posted by: Ma Laoshi | Sep 4 2018 22:40 utc | 47

FYI, from Elijah

....the battle of Idlib will take place, regardless of US threats. It will be divided into several steps. The first objective is to ensure the safety of the Russian Hameymeem military base on the Syrian coast that has been subject to several armed drone attacks, carried out by al-Nusra, aka Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), the ex-al Qaeda in Syria, as claimed by Russia. This makes the rural Latakia area the first objective, followed by rural Idlib. Turkey has offered substantial information which has been added to Syrian intelligence and Russian information gathering. This has created a bank of objectives against HTS, Tanzim Hurras al-Deen (THD) and all the other jihadists and foreign fighters in the city and its rural area.....

Posted by: michaelj72 | Sep 4 2018 23:06 utc | 48

More hypocrisy delivered for US public to consume. Where was the humanitarian concern on Libya? Substitute Lavrov for Dunford and Libya for Syria and see how it sounds. Or substitute Lord Acton for Dunford and America for Syria ("Civil War"). Meanwhile there are safe places for civilians in Idlib to go; they are the Syrian government controlled areas. I wonder how many are not allowed to leave by the terrorists in charge. Expect Turkey to help? Not likely. Turkey likes the position they've established in northern Syria. It provides a staging area to take on the Kurds among other things. And there is no mention of what weapons the terrorists have and where they got them.

Posted by: Curtis | Sep 4 2018 23:13 utc | 49

Trump asked Mattis to take out Assad.

Mattis instead fired missiles on some strategic sites.

Posted by: Circe | Sep 4 2018 23:13 utc | 50

Laguerre @38--

Idlib'll be fine; it's the terrorists that will collapse. The initial aim of the offensive is to secure the border with Turkey and sever Idlib into two parts roughly along the M-4 highway. Numerous towns want to reconcile and some effort will be made to get to as many as soon as practicable; the number I've seen is in the low 100s, but that was almost 2 weeks ago. Most of the terrain is good for mobile warfare and defensive works are said to be weak. The limited recent use of ATGMs is anticipated since there haven't been any real targets; but once the tanks begin to roll, I expect to see lots of frustrated gunners as their missiles go awry thanks to the various countermeasures mounted on the T-90s and upgraded T-72s.

IMO, the only event that can save NATO's terrorists is for massive intervention by the Outlaw US Empire--but it must go beyond airpower, and it risks going from Hybrid to Hot World War 3. More likely as I mentioned above, the Donbas will be attacked in an attempted diversion, but that won't stop the SAA and its non-Russian allies who are the main ground forces.

Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 4 2018 23:15 utc | 51

One Pakistani investigative journo once before 20 or so years launched a very insightfull article titled:

"There Is No Heaven Or Hell, There Is Only The Mossad"

Article has become invisible nowadays if you search for it with Google..
Is there any surprise?

Onwards to our own local "There Is No Heaven Or Hell" reporting:

Article: How the "'Aegean Shield' went under water" (september 4 2018.


Category: Greece, Espionage, National Information Agency Greece (NIC) Aegean, Syria, Refugees, Lesbos (island), NGO, head of ERCI - Panagiotis (Panos) Moraitis, US Embassy Greece 2016 Awards, United States Coast Guards 2016 Awards, National Defence Chief of Staff Greece Admiral Evangellos Apostolakis 2017 (award ceremony), E.R.C.I. NGO (Emergency Rescue Centre International), Blackwater

Language: Greek

In brieff, Erci Prince's (name not mentioned in the Article) best Greek pal Panos Moraitis, is on the run from Greek Authorities for organizing a huge illegal and clandestine operation, involving spying on Frontex and Greek and Turkish Navy ops, spying on Hellenic Coast Guard, spying against local Police authorities illegaly transporting people and goods from Turkey, israel, Lebanon, Egypt but mainly operating in North Eastern Aegean with a Lesbos island HQ.

Article: "Turkey 'told US' Kurdish militants must leave Syria - Defense Ministry. (September 4 2018)


Ankara told the US on Tuesdy that Kurdish militants must completely abandon Syria, Turkish Defense Ministry, Ankara talks - Tuesday.

Video Article (LiveLeak) : "NGO Helps Immigrants into Greece".

(Published December 4 2017)

French Video Title "IsraAid, l'ONG israelienne qui aide les dandestins a entrer en Europe"
(translation: IsraAid NGO from Israel, helping immigrants to enter Europe through Greece Aegean sea).

Posted by: Greece | Sep 4 2018 23:19 utc | 52

I am curious about how Turkey will navigate this mess. At some point, they have to pick a side and stick to it. They can’t keep playing both sides of the fence, otherwise they will lose the goodwill of Iran and Russia. And they are already on the shit-list of US establishment. So there are no incentives to try use Syria, etc to gain leverage.

I don’t know how many coups has to happen for Erdogan to know that he has no friends in the west.

Posted by: Alpi | Sep 4 2018 23:21 utc | 53

@11 james

“again the overreaching question is does trump lead and call the shots with regard the military, or do the neo cons?”

Trump is calling the shots in the same way he calls the shots on the palestinian/israeli peace process, by loading his ‘team’ of ‘experts’ with ardent israel-firsters (whose only qualifications were personal connections to Trump) and supporting whatever they suggest.

Two recent appointments - Samantha Ravitch to be deputy chairman of the Intelligence Advisory Board and James Jeffrey as the Special Envoy for Syria, both with impeccable neocon credentials should allay any doubts as to who is calling the shots.

As Colonel Wilkerson wrote in a recent article regarding the neocons: " Presently, their first and most identifiable target is the unfinished business—which they largely commenced—with Syria and Iran, Israel’s two most serious potential threats. If the Neocons got their way—and they are remarkably astute at getting their way—it would mean a reignited war in Syria and a new war with Iran..."

So Pompeo, Haley, and Bolton and the neocons are in henhouse. This will end well.

The full article is well worth the read

The Neoconservative Comeback - Wilkerson

Alastair Crooke has a similar take on recent events.

Is a ‘Suez’ Event Being Prepared for Syria?

As to your question - Trump or the neocons – to quote the israel-firsters, ‘there is no daylight’ between them. In other words -- tel aviv.

Posted by: pantaraxia | Sep 4 2018 23:26 utc | 54

Excellent article b, by the end of this week Idlib will be on fire, prepping has started to increase with massive air strikes, artillery and ballistic missiles. As soon as we hear cruise missiles are flying toward the wahhabeasts, then the party is on. The 3 countries meeting will be held in Tehran on Friday the 7th, and maybe that night the first advances will be already in progress. Massive moves by the SAA will be seeing in al Ghab, Lattakia, and by the M5, aiming to create pockets that will be pulled into the reconciliation process, just like what happened in the south. One key objective is to control the Syria-Turkish border, this is vital so the wahhabeasts do not force to cross the border into Turkey, while on the other hand weapons smuggling stops immediately.
Few more days and Idlib will be on fire.

Posted by: Canthama | Sep 4 2018 23:43 utc | 55

To all who are following Israeli air strikes on Syria:

The IDF jets do not overfly Syria. They standoff over Lebanon and fire their missiles or guided bombs.
So, refrain, if you can, from saying they are in Syrian airspace. In fact, they are terrified of Syrian airspace.

Notice too, US aircraft stood off in Jordan and Saudi and Iraq when they attacked.

They all are one flip of the Russian switches from being knocked down, and they know it.

If Russia chooses to, the S-400s and EW systems can easily cover Lebanon's airspace. Presently, the Lebanese would need to ask Russia for such coverage. They haven't yet.

It is inevitable that the day is coming when F-16s, F-22s, B-52s or F-35s are tagged.
Russia is as ready in Syria and the Mediterranean as they are in the Black Sea and Crimea.

What is certain, is in the Russian radar and missile defense units, every aircraft in the skies is "marked".
And now there are many hundreds of small missiles at a button's touch from eliminating them.
Pantsir-S1 units are all over the Syrian controlled territory. With S-200 upgrades, the Russian S-400s, and probably S-300s in country, everything from as near as 200 meters to 400 kms. is flying by the good graces of Putin.

The US personnel that is fully aware of this reality are pilots and their commanders.
Everyone else is drunk on arrogance. Of course, they won't be the ones shot down.

Posted by: Red Ryder | Sep 4 2018 23:55 utc | 56

To echo comments by Laguerre never underestimate the ego of Trump. It really is quite absurd to think that the sheer size of one man’s ego could be our salvation - in the short term of course. Here he is, a man of 70 who in his mind has fought his way to the top solo. He’s done it his way. He looks down with complete superiority on career politicians and their ilk as a bunch of liars, freeloaders and lackeys; he will not be browbeaten by them ever when it really comes to it. He will give in on many things to get peace or maybe he doesn’t know enough to know what he wants (most likely) but on something like war with Russia no way. He is not going to risk everything for a “shithole” country like Syria.

Iran, however is a different matter. Russia does not patrol the skies of Iran and would lend support in a secondary capacity, but not in an active one. The Idlib scenario is a lost cause. What matters to the US is retaining their strategic site in north-west Syria and their threats over Idlib are probably warning shots that Idlib and possibly Afrin is as far as the reconquest will be allowed to go.

Posted by: Lochearn | Sep 5 2018 0:00 utc | 57

Red Ryder @58.

Concur. The Russian buildup confirms that they are not going to backdown. "Liquidate" was the word used. We are now at the end-game. No way the FUKUS or Israel can do anything. In fact they would be suicidal to try. I have to admire the professionalism and restraint of Russia. Many (me included) would love to see FUKUS aircraft/ships destroyed. Thankfully, saner people are in charge.

Posted by: cdvision | Sep 5 2018 0:37 utc | 58

Sympathy for terrorists. If only they cared as much for Yemeni citizens, the United Nations is just a soft power appendage to the United States.

Posted by: Anunnaki | Sep 5 2018 0:38 utc | 59

Are Chinese boots on the ground? They want their shot at those 10k Uighurs

Posted by: Anunnaki | Sep 5 2018 0:42 utc | 60


There is no US presence in "north-west Syria". That is where Idlib is located. The 'strategic site' you reference is a zone of occupation located in the northeast of the country.

Posted by: metni | Sep 5 2018 0:45 utc | 61

I must say, I think b that this is a fantastic summary from b.

I think its the best summary available anywhere.

It should be read widely (along with the comments).

When you see people shocked by events to come at other blogs, direct them to MoA!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Sep 5 2018 1:41 utc | 62

@56 pantaraxia.. thanks for the articles.. the lobelog article from wilkenson is a bit disturbing and confirms the idea that the neocons are running the chicken house..alastair crookes article that trump has swallowed netanyahus line and etc. etc. is much the same... ("The neocons are in the lead. This is very significant, since the slender pillar on which Trump's rapport with President Putin had been built, was the prospect of US-Russian co-operation over Syria. And that hat seems, now, to be a dead letter.")

bottom line from the 2 articles is that the neo cons are in control, which basically means tel aviv is in control..

i like what @58 red ryder says about all that though..

i suspect russia will not back down if the gloves come off in any serious way.. this excludes another meaningless fireworks demonstration from trump which is highlight probable..

Posted by: james | Sep 5 2018 3:01 utc | 63


"Here he is, a man of 70 who in his mind has fought his way to the top solo. ...... he looks down on career politicians and their ilk as ....freliaders..."

Lol. In his mind-right. He was born with a silver spoon in his mouth. His old mans connections got him a series of deferments for heel spurs to keep him out of the War. His old man lent him money to start Trump Tower. When his casinos struggled his old man bought million in chips and never used them. He inherited a trust fund of 20 million which he borrowed against to keep out of personal bankruptcy when his empire crumbled. He then was able to use his "losses" from bankruptcy where he stiffed investors and contractors out of millions to avoid taxes for 20 years. His Empire was rebuilt from laundered money by Russian oligarchs who bought his overpriced condos. Talk about free loaders

Posted by: Pft | Sep 5 2018 3:06 utc | 64

#62, Annunaki,

The Chinese have sent no fighting forces of any kind to Syria. Despite reports from bogus sources, no elite special forces, no ground troops, no air force, not even a warship visiting Tartus.

They supposedly have sent "trainers" to assist some Syrian units. The Syrians have seen seven years of war. The Chinese have seen parades. I suppose the can train raw recruits. But they are not advisers. That would be ludicrous.

Yes, they should be there, killing Uyghurs. But they are not and apparently won't show up until the shooting stops.

Posted by: Red Ryder | Sep 5 2018 3:43 utc | 65

Regarding the thought that Erdogan is something of a ditherer in this situation, it seems to me that realpolitik has been guiding his path for quite some time. Certainly since that day that Putin forgave him, and Russia in the astonishingly short time period of one week cemented the accord between the two countries. I forget what else was going on at that time, but it was clear that Russia was in a great hurry to bring Erdogan over to the right side of history.

Over time we've seen much debate over where Erdogan's path lies, as if he has choices. But he has no choices. He hasn't had choices since he was caught trespassing in Syria when the Russians came. His trajectory ended there. To continue on his old plan he would have to defeat Russia. So that plan ended.

People and national interests are not black-and-white entities that make one decision and abandon all previous ones. Erdogan has had to play to several constituencies. I haven't closely studied this, but to my mind he's done a good job of juggling positions. But irreversibly and measurably, throughout all the smoke and mirrors, he has moved his nation towards Eurasia, away from entanglement with the west, and out of Syria.

Erdogan knows there is no welcome for him in the EU or the west as a whole. What crumbs they might throw him can in no way compensate for what he'd sacrifice in switching allegiance away from Russia and all it promises, back to a west whose treasure chest of inducements is eroding daily. He knows there is a grand vision if he wants one of Turkey as the bridge between east and west, but even this is a poetry on the top of the true fundamentals, of pipelines and trade and armies and geography. The fundamentals have long been settled on the ground, where fundamentals are always settled.

When the commanders chose Idlib to corral the worst and least repentant terrorists in, many pieces of the puzzle were put in place all at the same time. And surely this time now was foreseen back then, as part of the same play, when the border would finally be sealed, and Erdogan would have to side formally with the battle plan. It was masterful the way that Erdogan's own hens were compelled to come home to roost, with the Kurdish situation presented to Erdogan both to solve and to bear its brunt.

Now these games are over, amusing in a grim way though they were. Now we are seeing final resolutions of all the pieces at play in northwestern Syria. Now there is no room for posturing, and Erdogan seems to be acting accordingly, without posture.

It seems to me he is a rock-solid part of the future we hope for. History truly allows him no choice. Turkey is no plaything, and the east will treat it with a respect that the west has insufficient character even to know how to summon up. Erdogan, or at least Turkey, will become friends again with Assad. The whisper of this is already on the wind. But first, victory in Idlib.

In my view.

Posted by: Grieved | Sep 5 2018 3:53 utc | 66

Here's the closing paragraph of an August 30 post at Sic Semper Tyrannis called Just Say No ... to war - TTG.
(My bold)

Even if the jihadis execute a gas attack provocation, the DoD cannot execute a strike without Presidential authorization or a Congressional declaration of war, which won’t happen… ever. Trump had no problem climbing down from his bellicose rants against the North Korean nuclear threat. Perhaps he knows what’s at stake and can resist the waving of the bloody shirt by the media and even his own administration over a jihadi gas attack. It is in his hands. Just say no, Mr. President.

If someone told me that Trump didn't foresee, and anticipate, being thrust into a situation like this I'd say that person has been asleep.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Sep 5 2018 4:12 utc | 67

BOMBSHELL Documents Expose The Secret Lie That Started the Afghan War

The Emperor has no clothes.

Posted by: Daniel | Sep 5 2018 4:15 utc | 68

Grieved @68

The whole game changed for Turkey when Russia informed Erdogan of the impending US coup. A masterstroke by Russia. Remember Turkey had recently shot down a Russian Su25, and Russia had cratered the Turkey economy. It would have been tempting for Russia to let him stew in his own juice, but no, they could see the bigger picture. Whatever intel they gave Erdogan must have been compelling.

Erdogan's apparent playing two sides is just a ruse. He knows which side his bread is buttered. He will seal off the Turkey and Syria border. The rats are truly cornered.

Posted by: cdvision | Sep 5 2018 4:31 utc | 69

Hopefully we are closing Idlib chapter soon.. If west does not intervenes, Syrian victory is definitely coming.
Turkey should have picked up sides by now or will by friday.

Posted by: AV17 | Sep 5 2018 5:14 utc | 70

Quite a number of comments here have argued that the neocons and Tel Aviv are in charge and will determine the Syrian outcome in Idlib. I disagree. This is because the Zionists have not managed to co-opt the Pentagon, on which they spy and whose soldiers they have killed in the past. Mattis and his underlings know these things and remember. Also, more importantly, two things. It's military personnel who are overseen by these bigwigs who are asked to bleed and die by the Israelis and their sycophants in the US. This makes it personal for the Pentagon, unlike for State, Congress, or the Executive. The second thing is that the Pentagon war games these situations to death. Why do you think the US didn't attack Iran under Obama? Because Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize? Because he didn't like Netanyahu? No, it was because the Pentagon had war-gamed Iran to death and was quite clear that you can't attack Iran without the Straits of Hormuz getting closed, thereby tanking the world (and more importantly, the US) economy. So that didn't happen and isn't going to happen. For similar reasons, the Pentagon is not going to stop Syria, Russia, and Hezbollah in Idlib. Why? They have war-gamed out their options and they have none. So they allow the CIA and Mossad and their special forces guys in eastern Syria to continue to run arms, illegal oil, train thugs, and set up bases, knowing that it is going to go nowhere. Bottom line: Just like Trump telling Mattis to bomb Assad and it not happening, Mattis and the Pentagon do not and will not take orders from Trump or the neocons past a certain point. They know Trump is impulsive and deranged; they can back their resistance with an insistence that Congress declare war, which it will not do. In the meantime, during such deliberations, sanity is likely to return to the hotheads, as they start contemplating the likely consequences of their impulsivity. Therefore, count me among those who thank a divided government in the US for saving it and the world from itself.

Posted by: JNDillard | Sep 5 2018 6:35 utc | 71

re den lille abe 18

But these creatures, the irredeemable vile sh@ts , they need to go to hell. ... Unfortunately it will probably become bloody, Raqqa bloody.
That's precisely the opposite of what the Syrians have chosen to do so far. Ship them out to Idlib has been the sign so far.
Posted by: Laguerre | Sep 4, 2018 4:31:37 PM | 23

The problem here is: ship them where? who is willing to accept these fighters? As brutal as it sounds it seems the only solution is kill any who refuse to surrender. The Syrian born jihadis can be rehabed back into Syrian society but those foreign jihadis will either be killed now or spend the next few decades in prison camps.

Posted by: ToivoS | Sep 5 2018 7:58 utc | 72

cdvision #71. Putin notifying Erdogan of the coup against him and saving his life was perhaps the 21 century version of the Golden Bridge Kutuzov offered to Napoleon on his retreat from Moscow. They, the Russians seem to be good at that. They used an adversary to attack another foe. Brilliant.

And don't expect the MSM to stop lying about Idlib. They have a reputation of lying to protect. "That alliance’s ‘news’-media have been an essential part of this scam. It could not function, but for them — the aid that they provide in deceiving (instead of informing) their public — the aid at reinforcing the regime’s lies." Eric Zuesse "How US Government Relies on Lying Media"

Posted by: Tom | Sep 5 2018 8:08 utc | 73

@ Grieved | Sep 4, 2018 11:53:19 PM | 68

Not more than wishful thinking. If your personal situation allows this come to Turkey, hire a translator, move in the society outside of Istanbul or Ankara and talk to normal people. Then you will see that your picture is just wishful thinking. HE will never do anything else then switching sides here and then. That the EU even does not start of thinking to accept present Turkey into it is jst realism. It is a despotic regime by now and it would take at least 20 years to repair the damages.

Posted by: Hausmeister | Sep 5 2018 8:45 utc | 74

Tel Aviv carried out hundreds of strikes in Syria in last two years, Israel admits

Meanwhile some people here believe Syria is i no need of Russian S300...

Posted by: Zanon | Sep 5 2018 9:17 utc | 75

Red Ryder 67
The Chinese have helped Assad considerably all the way through .

Some hundreds of Chinese police improved systems of counter intelligence in Syria at a crucial juncture .
Plenty has been done but 'under the table !

Posted by: ashley albanese | Sep 5 2018 10:22 utc | 76

Hypocrisy 101: Syria vs Afghanistan

So we in the U.S. are demanding that Assad tolerate the largest concentration of Al Qaeda in his country while we smash Afghanistan to pieces to prevent it from becoming a 'terrorist haven' in the future. The hypocrisy here would be delicious were it not so sickening.

Posted by: Christian Chuba | Sep 5 2018 11:26 utc | 77

This is encouraging.

US Senator Slams Hostile Policy against Syria

Posted by: farm ecologist | Sep 5 2018 12:34 utc | 78

@79 Would be a lot more encouraging if he were indeed a "US Senator". The senator is not a "US Senator", though he is from the US. He is a member of the *state senate* in the state of Virginia.

...In other news...

The demonization of Russia gets a refresh. Today the Brits charged two specific Russian nationals with poisoning the Skripals.

The people need to be convinced Russia is a demon before we go head to head with them in Syria.

Posted by: librul | Sep 5 2018 12:54 utc | 79

FWIW, the SOHR reports that Turkey is applying considerable pressure to HTS and the jihadist groups to "resolve themselves or bear the attack’s burden" It indicates that to "resolve themselves" involves their dissolution".

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Sep 5 2018 12:59 utc | 80

speaking of irredeemable vile shits, theresa may is now claiming two russians working in military intelligence poisoned the skripals and the homeless people.

Posted by: pretzelattack | Sep 5 2018 13:28 utc | 81

@77, Ashley Albanese,

I'd like to see the source information for the counter-intelligence efforts aided by the Chinese.

Posted by: Red Ryder | Sep 5 2018 14:19 utc | 82

@ 73

That was good.

Posted by: bomba_din | Sep 5 2018 14:22 utc | 83

Will the U.S. offer to resettle HTS and the other Jihadis in Wyoming

hahaha. hey, maybe they'd find common cause with their supremacist counterparts out in them black mountain hills?


anyhoo, if the dust settles in Syria in the not too distant future they'll no doubt be issuing tourist visas once again, which means, having squandered the opportunity eight years ago, i'll be signing up.

Posted by: john | Sep 5 2018 14:53 utc | 84

The Brits have only got the aliases of the two "Russians". They don't know who they are. Indeed they could be of any nationality, but travelling on fake Russian passports. Now who is it who is so well known for doing that? Ah, now I remember, it's the Mossad!

Posted by: Laguerre | Sep 5 2018 14:57 utc | 85

Posted by: Laguerre | Sep 5, 2018 10:57:30 AM | 86

The British claim that they were travelling on genuine Russian passports.

British authorities identified the suspects as Russian nationals travelling on genuine passports under the aliases Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Sep 5 2018 15:14 utc | 86

farm ecologist

I do not believe that President al-Assad is the enemy. Both he and his father before him have been the protector of Christians. Under President al-Assad, Syria has not attacked any nation even though dozens of nations have attacked Syria. Syria is a neutral, non-belligerent nation. Hostile actions taken against Syria are not lawful under the Law of War. Accordingly, attacks on Syria are war crimes. Syria is not the enemy; the terrorists being armed and trained by the U.S., Turkey, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar are the enemy (2014)

Richard Black has been speaking eruditely against the abhorrent US policy in Syria for years.

a lone voice fallen on deaf ears.

Posted by: john | Sep 5 2018 15:15 utc | 87

Five facts lead me to believe there will be a serious shooting war between the U.S/Britain/France and Russia/Iran/Syria on or around Sept 7.

1) The deification of John McCain around his effort to free "enslaved people" in Vietnam

2) The location of the US carrier strike groups: in port or as far away from the ME as possible. These antiques can be destroyed quickly by long-range Russian cruise missiles.

3) The announcement today by the British Government of two accused Russians for the Skripal "poisoning". The timing is solely to demonize Russia further.

4) The inevitable "chemical warfare" false flag in Idlib.

5) The US elections. "Wartime President" is the only thing that can possibly rescue the Republicans.

Posted by: Burt | Sep 5 2018 15:18 utc | 88

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Sep 5, 2018 11:14:32 AM | 87

The British claim that they were travelling on genuine Russian passports.
Yeah, pull the other one, as they say in Britain. Fake names, but genuine passports. Now where have I seen that before....?

Posted by: Laguerre | Sep 5 2018 15:33 utc | 89

The two "Russians" look more like Turks or Israelis. Mossad, Turkish mafia?

Posted by: Virgile | Sep 5 2018 15:43 utc | 91

Posted by: Virgile | Sep 5, 2018 11:43:11 AM | 92

Yeah, they could be from anywhere. And who uses genuine stolen passports with fake names, and murders people in Abu Dhabi?

Posted by: Laguerre | Sep 5 2018 15:47 utc | 92

Posted by: Virgile | Sep 5, 2018 11:38:19 AM | 91

That's interesting, from France24 (funded by the Affaires Etrangères). Whether or not you agree with him, he was very clear that France is out of it. That's one US ally down, at least. Personally I think it's true, there's no point in the US going to war over Idlib. It's lost.

Posted by: Laguerre | Sep 5 2018 15:57 utc | 93

@66 pft.. well said..

@73 jndillard... i don't see it the same way.. your quote - "count me among those who thank a divided government in the US for saving it and the world from itself." the usa foreign policy for the longest time has been warmongering 24/7.. it continues to ramp up with no end in sight.. if that is saving it and the world from itself, we're in trouble.. the neocons clearly have the upper hand as witnessed all the shit that the usa has brought to the planet for a very long time..

@86 laguerre.. thanks.. the propaganda is repugnant.. the uk takes everyone for a fool.. it gets tiring..

@89 burt.. i agree with 3) interpretation... not sure about the timing of sept 7th though or a guarantee on 4)..

Posted by: james | Sep 5 2018 16:05 utc | 94

An excellent recent editorial at Strategic Culture how why the West has declared its own guilt in their declarations of violence against Syria:

US, Britain, France Nail Colors to Terrorist Mast

Posted by: BM | Sep 5 2018 16:52 utc | 95

Red Ryder 82
I base that assertion on a report I read in the last decade .

Pleasing someone quizzes it ! I said to a workmate as I reread the press item - 'Assad won't fall now the Chinese are sending security police to help plan and control' . I was surprised at the numbers , many hundreds !

Havn't got an exact diary reference but it was a reputable source at the time !

Posted by: ashley albanese | Sep 5 2018 20:17 utc | 96

“Chinese Uyghur’s” is a somewhat loaded term. You could also refer to them as “Eastern Turkmenistani Uyghur speakers resisting Chinese (or Han) Colonization”. Convenient for China, presumably, to have them fighting whomever in Syria, rather than Beijing, or Han colonizers, at home.

Posted by: Rhetoric | Sep 5 2018 20:35 utc | 97 Israeli Army Admits to Arming Syria Rebels, Then Censors Story

The Jerusalem Post, a major Israeli newspaper, published an article on Wednesday quoting Israeli military officials as saying that they had been providing seven different Syrian rebel groups with “large amounts of cash, weapons and ammunition.”

Though the report did not name all of the rebel factions subsidized by Israel, it did name Fursan al-Joulan, a rebel group which had previously been accused of being in league with the Israeli military. This is particularly noteworthy because this was one of few rebel groups which refused the Russian evacuation deal in southern Syria. The report says all arming of the groups ended in July with the defeat of the last rebels in the area...

The whole article is copied at the link as well as an archived PDF.

Posted by: et Al | Sep 5 2018 20:38 utc | 98

Mark2. Thanks for the (overly) generous words. I’m just picking up pieces of the puzzle and occasionally finding a few that fit together quite snugly. But I’m far from having the whole picture… though I do think I have a fairly good overall outline of it.

What thrilled me was seeing b’s last 2 articles about the situation in Syria making the same points I’ve been making - and even citing some sources I’ve posted links to. Not that I believe I am ahead of our webmaster. I echo him, and meander down the streams of links he posts far more than what may appear to be vice versa (as he may not have even read my comments or visited those links thorough my posts). But it’s been quite reaffirming to see him making the same analyses on several points.

Then again, I’d written a longish post yesterday tying together the Anglo-Zionist power elite, and their hugely disproportionate ownership and control over each arm of the octopus, but it doesn’t seem to have made the grade. Oh well. Keeps me grounded. ;-)

At least I haven’t had to read any comments of the “Assad and Putin already won the war,” “Brilliant 4-D Chess Champion Trump is pulling out of Syria” or “Putin is forcing Iran out of Syria” sort recently.

I was also quite happy to see Pft reference the Bank of International Settlements (to which I devoted two comments a short while back) as BIS is almost never mentioned in any “news” or analysis, in either MSM or “alternative media” - which of course is just the way they’ve been keeping it since 1930.

If the Global Fascist World Order has a headquarters where the decision-makers meet to make their nefarious plans, BIS sure seems to fit the bill.

For any who haven’t read it yet, the articles here will enlighten the gentle reader about this beast.

Posted by: Daniel | Sep 5 2018 21:09 utc | 99

ps. My post @99 was supposed to go here:

Clearly there was some glitch in b's software... that.... ummm... caused me to accidentally post it on the wrong thread. gulp

Posted by: Daniel | Sep 5 2018 23:06 utc | 100

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