Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
October 16, 2019

How The Win-Win-Win-Win Plan For Syria's Northeast Succeeds

The Syrian and Russian operations in the northeast of Syria are going well.


Russian troops prevented attempts by Turkish supported Jihadis to attack Manbij. Russian and Syrian units have now also entered Ayn al-Arab/Kobani. Syrian government troops took control of the electricity producing dam in Tabqah and some units set up posts in Raqqa. Other units entered the Conoco and Al-Umar oil fields north of Abu Kahmal and east of Deir Ezzor. Some local tribe which profited from the oil explorations there held a small protest against the return of government control.


The Turkish controlled Jihadis made little progress. Mostly Kurdish fighters are preventing them from expanding from the area they are informally allowed to hold. The Turkish command has called up more irregular 'rebel' troops including Jihadis from Jaish al-Islam who had once controlled Ghouta in the east of Damascus. They had been transported to Idleb after their defeat. A video shows them on a bus traveling through Turkey to reinforce the Turkish attack.

The Russian air force in Syria is preventing the use of the Turkish air-force in support of the Turkish attacks. Yesterday a Turkish F-16 entered Syrian air space but retreated when some Russian fighters appeared to hunt for it.

The U.S. is continuing its retreat from northeast Syria. Yesterday a video by a Russian journalist showed the inside of one of a camps that U.S. troops had hastily left. There was still food on the table and the Cokes in the fridge were still cold. The view was a bit embarrassing. Today the U.S. bombed a U.S./French military base in Kharab' Ashaq near the Lafarge cement factory shortly after its troops had left it. The likely intent was to prevent more embarrassing pictures.

Turkey still insists on a corridor of some 20 kilometers depth to prevent a PKK build up in the area near its border. At that depth Turkey would occupy the M4 highway which is a main economic corridor in the northern area. Under the Adana agreement from 1998 Turkey is allowed to make temporary incursions at the border up to a depth of 5 kilometer to fight any PKK concentration. Anything beyond that infringes on Syria's sovereignty and can not be tolerated.

Under the same treaty Syria is obligated to prevent any PKK camps or training areas in Syria. The U.S built 'Syrian Democratic Forces' are nothing but the PKK with a few drafted Arabs mixed in. The SNC will soon be dissolved into the Syrian Arab Army and the autonomous Kurdish administration will be removed. All that will alleviate the Turkish concerns and remove its justification for any occupation of Syrian land.

The mainstream borg is up in arms that Turkey uses Jihadis to attack their beloved anarcho-marxist PKK terrorists group. They have conveniently forgotten the history of the U.S. war on Syria, its arming of those Jihadis and its pampering of al-Qaeda.

The U.S. did not betray the Kurds any more than it betrayed Turkey and the Jihadis which the Obama administration armed throughout the war. Those were also U.S. 'allies' that were left hanging. Raina Khalek made a good video narrative that debunks much of the false Syria narrative the main stream media is now using.

To prevent Congress from putting harsh sanctions on Turkey, President Trump issued his own milder ones that will not do any harm to Turkey's economy. He has also sent Vice President Pence to talk with President Erdogan. It is just a bit of show to limit the fall out from the Turkish operation.

Everyone involved recognizes that this is a win-win-win-win situation. Erdogan could show that he was fighting against the PKK terrorists and prevented their attempts to become a proto-state. Trump could hold his campaign promise of removing U.S. troops from useless foreign interventions. Syria regained its northeast and the important economic resources of that area. Russia gained global prestige and additional influence in the Middle East.

Everyone is happy but the PKK Kurds. They are the biggest losers of this game but only in the sense that they are back to where they started. They had entered into a cooperation with the U.S. to eliminate ISIS. When that was done they got greedy and tried to rule over Arab land. It was always an unsustainable situation. After the defeat of ISIS the U.S. had no strategic reason to further pamper them. Only some wannabe imperialists in Washington DC and in Israel were urging to continue the relation.

There are signs that the series of events was preplanned and somewhat coordinated. There were intensive talks between Russia and Turkey and many phone calls between Trump and Erdogan. There were also talks we do not know about. Syrian and Russian troops were ready to enter the northeast.

It is likely that the plans of these actors extend beyond the northeast and include a solution for the Jihadi controlled Idleb governorate. It will be the next area where some surprising co-operations are likely to happen.

Added: This Trump answer to a question about Syria makes much sense.

Posted by b on October 16, 2019 at 17:47 UTC | Permalink

next page »

thanks b! great and positive overview on it all.. of course some of the losers are those neo-cons in the usa and israel too.. perhaps it is best to focus on all the positives here, after 9 or more years of bloodshed, suffering and more imposed on syria from outside forces...

Posted by: james | Oct 16 2019 17:56 utc | 1

Great News. Why oh why can we not get this sort of straight talking information from conventional news sources? (Don't bother answering that)

Posted by: Ike | Oct 16 2019 18:02 utc | 2

The Khalek video narrative may be a bad link.

Posted by: Realist | Oct 16 2019 18:04 utc | 3

Historic to see U.S. troops skedaddling with their tails between their legs.

Posted by: Vietnam Vet | Oct 16 2019 18:14 utc | 4

I don't view Erodogan as a "win". it is on the contrary a disaster. He is not going to conquer Rojava, will sustain quite a few soldier dead (I don't count the FAS) and is going to endure economic pression. Don't think he will escape that, there are too much leftists in the EU to pardon the desctruction of the Rojava experiment. Expect loss of free access to EU market. Merkel will go against that for a while but will unable in the long term, to contain long the centrists, green & socialists.

Posted by: murgen23 | Oct 16 2019 18:24 utc | 5

The only ones not happy are the pseudo-humanitarians, who are evacuating on false pretexts. For me, MSF pulling out is the proof they were hosting the Fr SF and their local partners. Are they leaving via Iraq or via Damascus?

Posted by: Mina | Oct 16 2019 18:26 utc | 6

People are pretty dismissive of the Syrian Kurds as having one collective mindset: some kind of mixture of PKK and FSA ruled by leaders of a Rojava Mafia. My recollection is that the YPG/YPJ was primarily for local defense at home in an area that had devolved into a lawless no-mans land after the start of the war. The initial volunteers had to have their own weapon to join, and there were few coordinated military actions between villages. I'll chalk that one down as "YPG/YPJ having their hearts in the right place."

That the initial training was conducted by their PKK cousins isn't terribly damning. The initial lessons were in weapons and tactics. It was the later emergence of a mafia-like CIA-infested PYD that later added weeks of political indoctrination to the training. Quid pro quo for the PKKs time/efforts? Part of some nefarious CIA scheme? Who knows... It's not like they could have called up USSOFCOM and 'ordered' a few dozen A-teams, or call the CIA for some arms and a little covert training, maybe from a shady merc outfit like Blackwater/Triple Canopy.

As it turns out, of course, they didn't have to call anyone. The PKK used the opportunity, and the two US organizations above came knocking. The rest is history.

Are all Syrian Kurds responsible for the YPG/YPJ morphing into the US-controlled SDF East Syrian Army? Sure... as much as I am for sending our spooks and soldiers there to take advantage of the terrorist I created there. It's not going to get any press, but there are some Syrian Kurds that will be glad to see this end and go back to the farm, despite still having Gasser Assad as a leader, and not a CIA viceroy lording over PYDistan. But your welcome for the weapons, Kurds.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Oct 16 2019 18:30 utc | 7

"In The Now" link. Works!

Posted by: karlof1 | Oct 16 2019 18:33 utc | 8

Looks like Lavrov and company have shown again their extreme patience in seeing this to a logical, and successful end. The USA counterparts are no where to be seen or heard. Pompeo has again been outclassed as been his predecessors at that post. It has been very interesting to watch all this unfold, save and except the tragic loss of civilian life that has been shed.

Thank you for a great update as usual.

Posted by: Taffyboy | Oct 16 2019 18:43 utc | 9

PavewayIV @7--

You must have seen this Magnier tweet:

"I'll make it even easier: A few minutes ago, #US Prsdt @realDonaldTrump said the 'PKK is far more dangerous than #ISIS (The Islamic State)'.

"The US trained & armed Syrian Kurds proxies, the YPG, are the Syrian branch of the PKK that Trump considers far more dangerous than ISIS."

In his preceding tweet, Magnier said:

"Do you remember when the #US spent $500 million to train/arm Al-Hamza Division?

"Well the US-trained 'Moderate rebels' are fighting - under a NATO flagged country (#Turkey) - the US-trained Kurdish YPG in the area occupied by the #US."

Ah, what's the proper adjective for this state of affairs? From several perspectives, Awesome works.

Posted by: karlof1 | Oct 16 2019 18:44 utc | 10

Spare a thought for the sacrifices by our boys in Manbij, as reported by the Washington Post today. War is hell:

"The Americans, who withdrew as part of Trump's sudden pullout of U.S. forces from northern Syria, left behind a military outpost that suggested a hurried exit, according to videos posted by smiling Russian soldiers and journalists who toured the base.

Vehicles and weapons appeared to have been removed before the Americans withdrew but a Game Boy, a refrigerator full of soft drinks and what appeared to be a few boxes of Krispy Kreme doughnuts remained. A book by the author Stieg Larsson sat on a table, next to a red can of Pringles. On another table sat a half-eaten meal."

But seriously, the way that the whole 'hand over' operation happened so quickly suggests that Trump was in on it. It looks like he kept his advisors and generals in the dark until the last moment, so that they could not interfere in the operation and delay the withdrawal of American forces.

Posted by: Brendan | Oct 16 2019 18:48 utc | 11

I don't see the relevance of the Adana agreement other than as a tool of convenience for the win-win-win-win parties.

The agreement was accepted by Syria under duress. Turkey at that time was threatening to invade. Syria signed not to invite Turkish military intervention but to avoid it.

There is no language in the agreement that b linked that allows Turkey to invade. Maybe there is language in annex 1 or annex 2 to the agreement, but if so they're still irrelevent because Turkey shredded all agreements with Syria in 2011. That was when Ahmet Davutoglu said, "We are completely suspending all of these trade relations, all agreements between Turkey and Syria have been suspended." As if to underscore those words, Turkey has played a leading role in the proxy war against Syria.

Turkey's presence on Syrian soil is uninvited and unlawful.

Posted by: SingingSam | Oct 16 2019 18:56 utc | 12

I don't view Erodogan as a "win". it is on the contrary a disaster. He is not going to conquer Rojava, will sustain quite a few soldier dead... Expect loss of free access to EU market...

Posted by: murgen23 | Oct 16 2019 18:24 utc | 5

I do expect something less spectacular than a "win" or a "disaster". Erdoğan does not need Rojava. Why is he bothered by YPG? Because of his war with PKK and paranoia that YPG passes weapons to PKK, which is plausible, but I actually did not see proven. Former Rojava under Damascus control can serve that aim. Theoretically, YPG under American control could work as well, but Turks complained (I have seen Tweets) that YPG passes arms through Qandil (PKK stronghold in Iraq). Concerning loss of free access to EU market, Erdoğan trusts his "nuclear weapon", i.e. control of a large population of refugees.

A few dead Turkish soldiers are lamentable, to be sure, but politically and rhetorically it will be packaged as a part of the war with PKK. Ultimately, that war (and sketchy economy) may be Erdoğan's undoing, but that is a long shot too.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Oct 16 2019 18:57 utc | 13

I'm more or less with PavewayIV on the Kurds. To extend that line of thought, the dismissive term "anarcho-Marxist" is a rare slip into MSM-like red-baiting for this site, which is usually refreshingly careful to avoid assuming tagging someone or some group as a leftist is to slur them. From what I've seen some Kurdish organizations in the area have been usefully experimenting with forms of community that are impressively gender egalitarian and non-hierarchical. It's mistake to simply blow them off as indistinguishable from PKK "terrorists." And, of course, tossing *that* term around without reference to how their "terrorism" developed in response to neo-Ottoman repression is another story, one with certain parallels to the history of Palestinian resistance to Zionism

At this stage of things what we've seen over the last few days is indeed much better than what most of the readers here feared. And I congratulate this site for steadily keeping the realities of the situation in view, years on end. At the same time, there's no reason to forget that Assad looks good only because Saudi-Zionist sponsored social disintegration was so disastrous.

Posted by: dadooronron | Oct 16 2019 19:01 utc | 14

I have nothing to contribute than saying thanks to b!
I tried to keep up with the development for two days now, but it turns out to have been a total waste of time. From now on I'll just sit and wait to see what b's research unveils. ;-)

Posted by: Cemi | Oct 16 2019 19:03 utc | 15

@karlof1 thanks for the good link, an invaluable tutorial!

Posted by: Realist | Oct 16 2019 19:06 utc | 16

"Gasser Assad"? 🤔 I'd expect better from you PWIV but I suppose you simply forgot to add /sarc..

The recovery of the oil/gas fields is a major development in this waning war with Damascus not having to rely as much on Iranian imports, also relieving Tehran who is under a harsh sanction regime from supporting its allie's energetic needs..

Posted by: Lozion | Oct 16 2019 19:06 utc | 17

Sharmine Narwani encapsulates BigLie Media reaction in a series of tweets:

"How dare the US president decide that Americans have no business in other people's conflicts. How dare nations solve their problems within their regions. What do you mean 'Americans not required??'"

"'Let them fight their own wars.'--Donald J. Trump"

"Nobody in America has a problem with this, except for people on TV & Blue Check accounts on twitter. People with few votes like to make big noise."

"Let countries work out their own problems without US military interference? Smartest thing I've ever heard from America.

"Thank you,
"The Middle East"

Even Trump agrees with b's analysis of this being win, win, win...:

"'I view the situation on the Turkish border with Syria to be, for the United States, strategically brilliant. Our soldiers are out of there, they're totally safe. They've got to work it out. Maybe they can do it without fighting.'"

Meanwhile, the preparatory assaults against Idlib's terrorists continue despite the focus being elsewhere.


Posted by: karlof1 | Oct 16 2019 19:07 utc | 18

You can tell Trump and Erdogan are enjoying themselves, yapping away. Ham actors.

Meanwhile, not everybody is happy:

An Act of Betrayal and Infamy

Posted by: Bemildred | Oct 16 2019 19:15 utc | 19

@ dadooronron who wrote and is worth repeating
And I congratulate this site for steadily keeping the realities of the situation in view, years on end. At the same time, there's no reason to forget that Assad looks good only because Saudi-Zionist sponsored social disintegration was so disastrous.

I am still waiting to read that ALL US troops have left Syria and Turkey is leaving as well before I believe Trump did good. I see Trump forced to respond to an untenable situation instead of doing the right thing from his heart....there is a civilization war going on and this is the current event driven focus.

When does the reclaim of Gaza start? Are ALL the Syrian oil wells under Syria's control?

Posted by: psychohistorian | Oct 16 2019 19:20 utc | 20

b: The U.S. did not betray the Kurds any more than it betrayed Turkey ...

That may be true but U.S. stood against Erdogan's intended incursion for nearly two years and at least once during that time tensions were high. Did Kurds not deserve to have some expectation that USA would continue to do so? Don Bacon cites this report that indicates that the Kurds did expect USA to continue to be protector right up to the point when Trump agreed to allow Erdogan to attack.

b: Everyone is happy but the PKK Kurds... After the defeat of ISIS the U.S. had no strategic reason to further pamper them. Only some wannabe imperialists in Washington DC and in Israel were urging to continue the relation.

I thought that the strategic reason to pamper the Kurds was to prevent Syria from reclaiming the oil fields and to promote a political solution that forced Assad from office. By this standard, USA is a loser also except that the possibility of an "ISIS resurgence" continues to give neocons a reason to remain in Syria and Iraq.

b, or anyone: Is there any reliable info on the ISIS prisoners?

<> <> <> <> <> <>

Overall, it's good that the Syrian War finally love to a full conclusion.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Oct 16 2019 19:21 utc | 21

"experimenting with forms of community that are impressively gender egalitarian and non-hierarchical"
... then you can be sure that the 'experiment' has been going on for a few centuries if not millenia and is just part of their culture! Aren't the Kurds originally mountain tribes? This implies a strict division of tasks in the household for a community to function.

Posted by: Mina | Oct 16 2019 19:23 utc | 22

A victory for the Assad regime, our avowed enemy

Our demented U.S. press corp strikes again, I've heard this phrase used multiple times. Since when is Assad OUR avowed enemy, when did Assad ever harm us, how is the U.S. the agrieved party?

We struck Syria without cause.

Posted by: Christian J Chuba | Oct 16 2019 19:24 utc | 23

> Other units entered the Conoco and Al-Umar oil fields
> north of Abu Kahmal and east of Deir Ezzor.

So the SAA has finally crossed the Euphrates at Deir Ezzor, is that confirmed? Any further reports from there?

Posted by: AshenLight | Oct 16 2019 19:25 utc | 24

correction @22: "... come to a full conclusion."

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Oct 16 2019 19:29 utc | 25

Thanks for clear story and link to the very clear video by Raina Khalik and also the great maps.

One of the tweets in response to Trump's tweet is this:
"“Poland doesn’t want Germany to take its land, I can understand that, but what has that got to do with the United States of America?” Just think about that sentence. The man is a horrible, ignorant human being."

This is one of the most stupid (!!!) things I have ever read. Well, lately read. Can't this Tweeter see that he has the shoes on the wrong feet here? This Tweeter is in effect saying that Syria should let Turkey take its land. That is the same as saying that Poland should have let Germany take its land. More evidence that the Trump haters have lost not only their "minds" but also their "brains."

Posted by: Really?? | Oct 16 2019 19:33 utc | 26

Yes! I totally agree with b. It's time for Yankee to go home. I also agree that it seems to be a well orchestrated plan with a tacit wink and nod from Trump. Kudos and well played, sir. I may have misjudged him. Furthermore, I'm enjoying the delicious crocodile tears, howls of anguish and the cacophonous symphony of idignation from the Rabid Right and the Looney Left. It warms me heart, it does. I would also like to add that while I may disagree with President Trump on several things, I seriously hope he's reelected. The Bolsheviks posing as Democrats are downright scary. There's already a cold civil war going on, and it's starting to really heat up.

Posted by: Shadow | Oct 16 2019 19:34 utc | 27

Jack Rabbit: the statements I've seen about the ISIS prisoners is to the effect they will wind up under control of Baghdad or Damascus, that would be the ones that have not managed to get loose.

AshenLight: I hear SAA is in Raqqa. The US military "appears" to be conducting a hasty withdrawal, how far it will go remains to be seen, but they will leave forward areas first so remaining in the oil patch now doesn't mean much one way or the other. I have seen statements that SAA is in the oil patch, but not to where I believe it yet. It matters little, the US position there is untenable, it has always been untenable, and now the cat is out of the bag.

Posted by: Bemildred | Oct 16 2019 19:35 utc | 28

az i stated before. The war against Syria was to establish an ottoman
Empire from Israel, Syria Turkey, Balkans, Germany.

For this purpose the key role was Turkey. So Turkey had to invade Syria, that was weakened by the terrorists.

But Erdogan refused. So the USA wanted to remove him by a putsch. Erdogan survived and turned himself and Turkey to east. Putin and China invited him to go east. And that is against the Interest of Israel. Israel want to drink blood from an ottoman Empire of Europe. Otherwise they cant drink blood from an ottoman Empire of the east.

Posted by: az | Oct 16 2019 19:35 utc | 29

Are ALL the Syrian oil wells under Syria's control? per @21 psychohistorian

Most are controlled by the US via SDF. East of Deir ez Zor remained a region the US kept air dominance. Part of it is beyond range of S-400s. It is a large deconfliction zone where Russians and US talk everyday about air traffic and combat missions.

Posted by: Red Ryder | Oct 16 2019 19:37 utc | 30

Over at CounterPunch, Patrick Cockburn has what looks like a totally opposite take. Perhaps he doesn't read MOA??

October 16, 2019
How Turkey’s Invasion of Syria Backfired on Erdogan
by Patrick Cockburn

His first graf:

"Turkey’s Syrian venture is rapidly turning sour from President Erdogan’s point of view. The Turkish advance into northeast Syria is moving slowly, but Turkey’s military options are becoming increasingly limited as the Syrian Army, backed by Russia, moves into Kurdish-held cities and towns that might have been targeted by Turkish forces."

MoA doesn't seem to think the action has backfired on anyone except the PKK. And the YPG.

Posted by: Reallly?? | Oct 16 2019 19:38 utc | 31

@ Brendan 12
. . .so quickly suggests that Trump was in on it. It looks like he kept his advisors and generals in the dark until the last moment
Perhaps you recall that SecDef Mattis resigned last December because Trump announced a pull-out from Syria? There are 23,000 workers in the Pentagon, and perhaps some of them know something about planning, wouldn't you agree?

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 16 2019 19:47 utc | 32

Actually, Jack Rabbit if this works out as it seems to be, Trump and the US are also winners - The neocons are the losers. But now there is a greater threat of a Trump asassination from the traitors within the "deep state".

Erdoğan is stil a bit of a wild card. Hopefully, he has given up his neo-Ottoman dream

Posted by: Blue Dotterel | Oct 16 2019 19:50 utc | 33

Really?? @31: Well the thing is Erdogan doesn't look like he thinks it is backfiring on him, and neither does Trump. You have to ask what's up with that? Iran & Russia, who you would think have a big stake, have been critical but subdued, like they are holding their buddy Erdogan's beer for him. So until he thinks it has backfired on him, I'm not going to either. Neither one of them can keep their mouth shut, and with Trump it's a feature not a bug.

Cockburn is having trouble thinking outside the box. Trump has sent a lot of people into cognitive disconnect of one sort or another, their minds crumble under the onslaught.

Posted by: Bemildred | Oct 16 2019 19:50 utc | 34

@ Red Ryder # 30 with the clarification about continued US control (via SDF) of some Syrian oil fields

Thanks, that was/is my understanding that there is more to go before US is entirely out of Syria

But PROGRESS in the correct direction is good!!!

Posted by: psychohistorian | Oct 16 2019 19:50 utc | 35

dadooronron @15--

"At the same time, there's no reason to forget that Assad looks good only because Saudi-Zionist sponsored social disintegration was so disastrous.'

Ah, so you have your own crystal ball capable of seeing the future as it might have been if what you euphemize as "social disintegration" hadn't occurred.

We'll get confirmation of this tweet sent just a few minutes ago after daybreak tomorrow:

"US Coalition announces the complete withdrawal of its forces from Raqqa province, including Tabqa and oil fields in the eastern countryside of Deir Ezzor."

Posted by: karlof1 | Oct 16 2019 19:54 utc | 36

Bemildred @28

Thanks for the answer but I do understand that ISIS prisoners will be the responsibility of some government but I'm wondering how many, if any, actually got freed?

I'm trying to ascertain if freeing ISIS prisoners a goal of Turkey (MIT) or USA (CIA).

US media is raging about an "ISIS resurgence". Former SecDef Gen. Mattis says that its inevitable.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Oct 16 2019 19:56 utc | 37

Looks like Senator Graham won't be playing golf with President Trump any time soon. Graham has gone bonkers on Syria, an argument with Trump that he can't win. Graham's twitter feed is here.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 16 2019 20:01 utc | 38

JR @38: Sorry, dunno, might take a while to find out, I do know certain parties are hyping the idea they are all going to escape and casting blame for it, and I read some went to Iraq already, and that US forces passed some to SAA, so ...

The impression I get is the emphasis is all on getting the SAA/Russian forces in place, once that happens I think Erdogan will manufacture some sort of victory and retreat a peace-maker, and then we will start to get more info. Maybe a little demonstration battle or something. Could take days.

Posted by: Bemildred | Oct 16 2019 20:02 utc | 39

@ 39 don bacon.. it's a bit ot, but why the fuck does graham matter for anything? or is this more of the typical naval gazing brought to all message boards from americans in general??

Posted by: james | Oct 16 2019 20:08 utc | 40

Thoughts, please (here):

I suggest that because the Kurds are a tribal force of millions who might oppose the globalist agenda in the Middle East, they may have been slated for erasure, and this latest event is merely one of a long series of events designed to kill off the Kurds. Or, at the very least, killing the Kurds is a bonus for the establishment.

Beyond the Kurdish issue, a renewed Syrian crisis and EU opposition to Erdogen could lead to another flood of Muslim migrants into Europe. The last time this happened it sent the EU into an economic and political tailspin. It also opens the door to more fear in Europe and provides extra cover for a financial crash there.

And, ultimately, the Turkish invasion provides a perfect excuse to draw a number of opposing camps into a single place in close proximity, The possibilities for the globalists are endless. The Kurds are turning to Assad for aid and protection from Turkey. Iran is a military ally of Assad. Russia is still heavily involved in the area, and so is the US and Israel. I think anyone with any intelligence can see where this is headed.

If the globalists are successful in turning Syria into the center of the world by encouraging a Turkish invasion with a US troop pull back from the border, they would be killing multiple birds with one stone.

Posted by: Evelyn | Oct 16 2019 20:11 utc | 41

@ JR 38
US media is raging about an "ISIS resurgence". Former SecDef Gen. Mattis says that its inevitable.

Okay, let's say these ISIS prisoners are released from prison. They're beaten, broke and wandering around in a country where nobody likes them, and their previous US and Turkey sponsors want nothing to do with them. . .Are these magic people, that are going to step into a phone booth and come out fully armed and organized to do anything?...No.
And Mattis is a fool, a war criminal (Fallujah) who never should have been hired, but Trump was green back then and he sought general officers as protection. They're all gone now.

PS: There a lot of colorful Mattis quotes; here's one: You go into Afghanistan, you got guys who slap women around for five years because they didn't wear a veil. You know, guys like that ain't got no manhood left anyway. So it's a hell of a lot of fun to shoot them. Actually it's quite fun to fight them, you know. It's a hell of a hoot. It's fun to shoot some people. I'll be right up there with you. I like brawling.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 16 2019 20:13 utc | 42

There is something absurd about that deserted base that I can't quite put into words. Like... the juxtaposition of being shipped off thousands of miles away to a war zone, an arena of bloodshed and sacrifice, then just an abundance of American junk food and soda just laying around (did I see some Krispy Kreme boxes?). Maybe it's because I've never been in the military but... these are your soldiers?

Posted by: twhstmmwmaf | Oct 16 2019 20:21 utc | 43

Twhstmmwmaf - 44
This has been the US military way since WWII at least. They were way more supplied with way more gimmicks and comfy thingies than any other army. British soldiers were quite astounded when they saw the theatres and all the goodies the GIs got, compared to their own camps who were far more ascetic.

Posted by: Clueless Joe | Oct 16 2019 20:28 utc | 44

Great, if it turns out that way, B, but you shouldn't praise the day before the evening. Erdo has a refugee problem, he can't solve it as described.

Posted by: Pnyx | Oct 16 2019 20:32 utc | 45

Tulsi Gabbard goes off big-time on regime-change wars in the first minute of this video.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 16 2019 20:36 utc | 46

Tulsi Gabbard from last night's debate:

"Trump has the blood of Kurds on his hand, but so do politicians from both parties along w/ the MSM who champion Syrian regime change war. NYT/CNN have also smeared veterans like myself for calling for an end to this war. Completely despicable."

An interesting question was posed and reframed by Tulsi as to what's the most important function of the POTUS, Commander in Chief being held by too many as #1. Gabbard:

"The real question is, who is fit to serve as our commander in chief - the most important responsibility the President has?"

Is Biden with his very obvious memory/dementia issues fit? Sanders with his cardiovascular disease (anyone having a heart attack is automatically deemed to be so afflicted)? Trump with his seemingly unbalanced personality? There's no written fitness qualification for being a POTUS candidate, nor for being POTUS (25th Amendment's extremely limited exception, noted) That's what debates, campaigns and conventions are supposed to be for. The Constitution in Article II says "The executive Power shall be vested" in the POTUS. Executive Power: "The executive executes and enforces law." [My Emphasis] The Constitution then adds the position of Commander in Chief to the implied functions of the Executive.

Now before running off to consult your copy of The Federalist Papers, which job did the framers of the Constitution deem more important--Chief Magistrate or Commander in Chief?

(Doesn't that just massively beg the question WHY the great depth of Corruption within the Outlaw US Empire?)

Various Pooh-Bahs are going-round like Chicken Little crying we have a Constitutional Crisis as Trump tries to perform his duties as he sees them. Where are the cries that we have had grossly ineffective--criminal even--Chief Magistrates for decades: Isn't that a crisis of the highest order?

Perhaps a significant number of barflies are unaware that Washington DC was built atop swamp land owned by George Washington, thus the relevance of Trump's campaign vow to Drain the Swamp. Perhaps the operative question for any potential POTUS ought to be: Are you strong enough to rule over the Swamp and force its denizens--all of them--to obey the law?

Posted by: karlof1 | Oct 16 2019 20:48 utc | 47

a blast from the past....
US: Assad's Syria a 'dead man walking'

President Bashar Assad with a senior official likening his authoritarian regime to a "dead man walking" over its brutal crackdown on pro-reform demonstrators and increasing international isolation.
The State Department official, Frederic Hof, told Congress on Wednesday that Assad's repression may allow him to hang on to power but only for a short time. And, he urged the Syrian opposition to prepare for the day when it takes control of the state in order to prevent chaos and sectarian conflict.
"Our view is that this regime is the equivalent of dead man walking," said Hof, the State Department's pointman on Syria, which he said was turning into "Pyongyang in the Levant," a reference to the North Korean capital. He said it was difficult to determine how much time Assad has left in power but stressed "I do not see this regime surviving." . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 16 2019 20:53 utc | 48

Pnyx @ 46
Just a reminder, Erdo said early on in this invasion - that if European politicians keep calling it an invasion he’all send 2,000,000 refugees there way !
There would be natural justice in that.
Don’t ya jus love Karma !!

Posted by: Mark2 | Oct 16 2019 20:53 utc | 49

@ 49
Excuse me, that was Dec 14, 2011.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 16 2019 20:54 utc | 50

Vietnam Vet @ 4

Historic to see U.S. troops skedaddling with their tails between their legs.

Nah, not really. It was a planned withdrawal - all the best armies are perfectly capable of executing such tactical manoeuvres. Breaking off from enemy action without it becoming a rout is perhaps the greatest demonstration of military art.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Oct 16 2019 20:57 utc | 51

No Unconventional Warfare breeds without a population's social / economical grief, mature enough, before an effective foreign instigation, whatever ulterior motives the latter is tied to. Of which Ukraine also comes to mind. Tunisia? Egypt? Could we contrast Libya? And there's plenty social / economical grief around in western democracies likewise.

Could this be a final chapter of the "Arab Spring", by any other name, there being surely so much struggle ahead for above cultures?

Peace apparently has been earned somewhere... let Empires claim victory and cry.

Posted by: Vasco da Gama | Oct 16 2019 21:02 utc | 52

Evelyn @42--

Sorry, but Brandon Smith is misleading at best. He most certainly has a classic case of Globalist Derangement Syndrome, with his concluding paragraph being a doozie.

What're being fed into the meat grinder of Syria are more Turkey-based terrorists, thus eliminating one future potential source of destabilization. Indeed, one of the fundamental goals of the many Eurasian-based organizations Erdogan wants Turkey to join is to eliminate the primary sources of extremism/terrorism as they have no place in a world of civil nations. And those organizations are 100% antithetical to what Smith sees as Globalists.

Posted by: karlof1 | Oct 16 2019 21:08 utc | 53

So how will Israel/ neocons respond? Was the rush to impeachment the first response, anticipatory? Big terror event? Encourage Erdogan to keep up military harassment all along the border, perhaps using AQ, AN, by whatever name and remnant?

Doesn't that all sound too simple? Does the network that pulled off this arrangement for US troop removal, have further plans/ diversions to keep that adversary on its back foot?

Posted by: smoke | Oct 16 2019 21:09 utc | 54

Piotr Berman @ 14

A few dead Turkish soldiers are lamentable, to be sure, but politically and rhetorically it will be packaged as a part of the war with PKK. Ultimately, that war (and sketchy economy) may be Erdoğan's undoing, but that is a long shot too.

Nah, it'll be the takfiris who'll do the dying resulting in Erdogan both cleaning up his takfiri problem and not having to explain to his supporters why Turkish soldiers had to die. Turkish soldiers might start dying when the takfiris discover they've been crapped on from a great height with an inordinate amount of shit but that'll work to Erdogan's advantage when it comes to butchering the remaining takfiris.

BTW, it's going to be interesting to see how American "liberals" explain away the murderous nature of the takfiris and explain how it was acceptable for them to murder ordinary Syrians but not the Kurds. Someone has suggested that it's because of the strain that unemployed takfiris are under.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Oct 16 2019 21:17 utc | 55

Trump unchained: How the ‘God-Emperor’ is ending American Empire with Syria gambit

US President Donald Trump’s decision to pull US troops out of Syria is drawing fire from Democrats, media and some in his own party as well. He doesn’t seem to care, insisting on his 2016 campaign promise to end the endless wars.

At a press conference on Wednesday, Trump batted away every attempt at criticism – calling out the media for faking footage from Syria; describing the Kurdish militias that worked with US troops against Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) as “no angels”; and demanding one good reason why the US should be involved in a centuries-long dispute between Syrians, Kurds and Turks when they could work that out themselves. None was forthcoming.

He even chided the US military-industrial complex that wants to “fight forever,” while making sure to note that he authorized a $2 trillion spending spree to rebuild the “depleted” US military. When reporters brought up the outspoken opposition by some Senate Republicans, Trump shot back that they ought to do their jobs, and he would do his. This was not a president worried about getting impeached, but someone confident in his position after 1,000 days in office.

Posted by: Bemildred | Oct 16 2019 21:22 utc | 56

When did Assad become the "enemy" of the US? Partly when the current Assad decided not to host US extradition/torture sites which his father had. Mahar Arar didn't torture himself in a Syrian prison, that was done at the direct orders from the CIA/Mossad and the US administration, who grabbed Arar at a airport transfer (in New York IIRC).

The Zionists worldwide thought they could get the Kurds and ISIS/etc. to do the dirty work of destroying Syria and opening the door to the US balkanizing Syria as part of the Greater Israel AIPAC/PNAC agenda. Nuttyahoo must be getting VERY worried... the Golan will have to be handed over once the SAA and Russia eliminate the various terrorist remnants which are the excuse Israel used to grap the Golan.

Posted by: A P | Oct 16 2019 21:24 utc | 57

Evelyn #42

My take on that diatribe from Brandon Smith is that he is simply blathering word strings long enough to fill some column inches in press. That text has the appearance of incoherence born out of the mouth of a loser and I would not suffer any more from that fool.

Looks like Bibi is a loser too:))

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Oct 16 2019 21:32 utc | 58
Spare the tears for the Kurds, read this article about who they are and what horror they were responsible for in eastern Syria. They are lucky Syria didn’t allow Turkey to go in and genocide them.

Posted by: durlin | Oct 16 2019 21:36 utc | 59


I read about a hundred escaped from one camp when a bomb exploded nearby. This seems to be about it and they may have just been the families rather than fighters.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Oct 16 2019 21:36 utc | 60

smoke @55: This is all happening because the election is coming. Trump went after Biden in Ukraine. The Dems freaked out and decided they had to impeach him (at last! payback for Bill & Monica), intending I think to stop the looking into Biden. So Trump threw a grenade in the middle of all their Middle East plans. The Neocons should not have pissed off Trump. He is a vengeful prick. Notice how it sucked all of Schiff's oxygen from the room? They get to be the chumps this time, the Neocons, they finally met their match. Trump is nobodies good soldier. A con-man and a TV actor.

Posted by: Bemildred | Oct 16 2019 21:36 utc | 61

#56 Ghost Ship
"BTW, it's going to be interesting to see how American "liberals" explain away the murderous nature of the takfiris and explain how it was acceptable for them to murder ordinary Syrians but not the Kurds."

Most "liberals" seem to be suffering from Alzheimer's. They have a good memory, it's just short. "Liberals", or more broadly those complaining about the pullout of US forces also seem to suffer from doublethink.

“Doublethink means the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them.” George Orwell 1984.

When you have been doing this task (doublethink) for do long, it is second nature and they don't even realise it. Have "liberals" totally dropped their original position on takfiris? I guess we will find out when the SAA start to liberate the rest of Idlib. That could prove quite amusing. Actually now would be a good time for the SAA to start another front in Idlib, if they have the resources to do that. It should be a bit easier as some militants have been withdrawn from Idlib to be fed into the meatgrinder in NE Syria and the media has turned on the militants, well at least while they are butchering Kurds.

Posted by: Tom | Oct 16 2019 21:38 utc | 62

So how will Israel/ neocons respond? smoke @ 55..

who did this and what was it suppose to accomplish?

Interesting win, win, win article

Posted by: snake | Oct 16 2019 21:44 utc | 63

Vietnam Vet @ 4, Ghost Ship @ 51:

You know the "sudden" and "unexpected" withdrawal was planned when just one token half-eaten meal and some empty yoghurt cups are left on one table and what Americans these days believe passes for high-brow literature (a not very well thumbed copy of Stieg Larsson's "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo") is left on another table. What happened to all the girlie magazines?

Posted by: Jen | Oct 16 2019 21:46 utc | 64

I agree with the overall assessment as far as the region is concerned, but would like to hear about the impact on US politics. On at least one occasion in the past a POTUS backed out of 'commitments in the region' in which the CIA and other agencies had investments (Playa Girón). This was arguably one road leading to Dallas. Now admittedly there are not a lot of Kurds plotting revenge in the Everglades but there might be some in the Beltway looking around for the nearest book repository. For every win-win there are lots of losers, and sore losers at that.

Posted by: Patroklos | Oct 16 2019 21:47 utc | 65

I would be grateful if MoA could at some point provide us a sketch on just what sort of Russian ground forces are involved here: numbers of troops, types of units. Do they have their own armor, artillery, anti-aircraft, EW? How much are they doing compared to the Syrian Arab Army in the ongoing operations?

I guess I didn’t realize Russia even had significant ground forces in Syria now. At one point, Russia made a very public announcement they were pulling even most of their air forces out, having completed the bulk of the work against I.S. and the “moderate rebels”, though even at the time I realized that was at least partially public messaging to clarify the distinction between themselves and a certain humanitarian-interventionist global hegemon who never likes to go home.

Is there, perhaps, a revealing story in the shadows here, in terms of whether some Russian strengthening or other preparations indicate some foreknowledge of what is happening now?

Posted by: David G | Oct 16 2019 21:52 utc | 66

Patroklos @66: "Why is he still there?" is just as good a question, and I don't know the answer, but I do notice that 4 years into this calamity he is still standing. And he sure does have plenty of enemies, so I don't think he got lucky.

Posted by: Bemildred | Oct 16 2019 21:56 utc | 67

Maintaining operational security is quite likely slowing SAA's advance into the vacuum created by withdrawing/retreating Outlaw US Empire troops and SDF forces:

"It’s possible that #SAA currently working on steady installation of defense positions & deployment on E side of valley part stretching from Tal Tamr until Ras Al-‘Ayn.

"Immediate entrance into Ras Al-‘Ayn salient remains risky until securing both flanks of main supply-line."

Too many previous lessons given at expense of needless SAA troop loses without proper op/sec. Do take note that most video of SAA forces entering abandoned cities is taken at night.

It should also be noted that the Turkish military has a delicate mission to perform: They must appear to provide support for the invading terrorists but not too much. If this action was a genuine invasion by the Turkish state, it would have employed its top strike forces, not lightly armed 4th line terrorist cannon fodder. The separation of Syrian and Turkish forces by Russia so far seems to be working well.

Posted by: karlof1 | Oct 16 2019 21:59 utc | 68

Bemildred @68: Doesn't Trump eat KFC and McDonalds because he's paranoid about being poisoned? I wonder how often assassination has been seriously considered in various circles. But you're right, he's still standing. Perhaps the risk of civil strife would be too great. After Caesar Rome got Augustus, arguably far worse...

Posted by: Patroklos | Oct 16 2019 22:04 utc | 69

Trump does something incredibly positive for once.
All libtards and neocons: ‘Oh the humanity!’
TDS still so strong.
Still, fulfilling that anti-war promise for 2015-16.
Lots of votes there.

Posted by: MadMax2 | Oct 16 2019 22:06 utc | 70

Patroklos @69:

I've heard that, but the media is full of shit, they spend their days spreading facile lies. I don't like him, there is plenty to go after him for, but they use all this fake stuff, slurs and insults, attempts to degrade him etc. That sort of politics of personal destruction does not work with Trump, he has no such reputation to besmirch.

Well "civil strife" has been my working hypothesis for it, but it's a guess. The main fact that seems reliable is he is up there and it's been one long conniption since he got there, it's no accident.

Maybe he has a Russian security team. /sarc

Posted by: Bemildred | Oct 16 2019 22:13 utc | 71

karlof1 @54
uncle tungsten @59

Thank you both for sparing me a great deal of confusion.
(I'm far happier with the perspective of b and fellow travelers such as yourselves.)

Posted by: Evelyn | Oct 16 2019 22:20 utc | 72

David G @67--

Russia Defense Ministry website where you'll notice two Syria-related links where you can find some info. Russian Military Police make up the majority of ground forces deployed, probably several battalions. The Aerospace forces are the most visible to media. Numerous units have rotated to Syria to gain practical experience. Perhaps the most important as far as the overall situation is concerned were the trainers and instructors plus mechanics and other specialists that helped retrain/re-equip/rearm/refurbish Syrian forces, particularly from 2015-2018. Happy Reading!

Posted by: karlof1 | Oct 16 2019 22:21 utc | 73

When did Assad become the "enemy" of the US?

Posted by: A P | Oct 16 2019 21:24 utc | 58

Our (Usian) media is often very careful in phrasing. To give an example, "we" no longer seek "adherence to international law" but "rule based world order". One rule is "territorial integrity of Ukraine (and, less frequently, Georgia)" which in no way implies the support of "territorial integrity of Syria or Serbia".

About Assad, I read "avowed enemy of the US", which is definitely correct. The small print is: who did the avowing, my guess is not Mr. Assad.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Oct 16 2019 22:24 utc | 74

should one not wait for the fighting to end before declaring a win win win ?

Winning. Fuck sake, that is hte problem in the first place, that people want to win, rather then co-operate and start working together. WIN WIN WIN, and fuck all that collateral damage.

Posted by: Sabine | Oct 16 2019 22:25 utc | 75

The backlash is building. The only chance for Trump over-come is to come out swinging - it them hard while they are still sputtering in indignation. He is losing support of many repubs but gaining support of the people.

Graham and the rest of the top tier polls never say what they think - that might be left to quiet conversations with their spouse. They say what their backers want them to say, they dare not stay from the herd - that is thier role, nothing more.

Posted by: jared | Oct 16 2019 22:26 utc | 76

About rules of "rule based world order": one can make a generalization that countries from letter S are bad: Serbia, Syria and Russia (former Soviet Union with "Soviet mentality) while countries that start with U are good: USA, UK, Uganda, UAE. Thus it is of utmost importance to refer to an important ally as "KSA" or simple "The Kingdom" near an unnamed Gulf. However, if you find that monarchy displeasing, you use a name that start with S.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Oct 16 2019 22:33 utc | 77

The Russians can be proud of what they have accomplished here:

and perhaps even more so the Syrians.

Posted by: jared | Oct 16 2019 22:34 utc | 78

Since when have you seen cooperation by the US deep state or borge or whatever name you want to give them. They are not agreement capable and are too far detached from reality to be negotiated with.
The situation is a win for all players apart from the US deep state and their Kurd proxies who had visions of partitioning Syria. The cooperation you so much like is occurring between all other players including Trump and is described by b.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Oct 16 2019 22:40 utc | 79

The Russians can be proud of what they have accomplished here:

and perhaps even more so the Syrians.

Posted by: jared | Oct 16 2019 22:50 utc | 80

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Oct 16 2019 22:40 utc | 80

and all the dead people - but then literally no one gives a shit about these.

as for the US, Russia and all the other wankers, they will be the same they were ten / twenty years ago - and i have been on this site since its inception, and frankly even the posters here are still crying about the same shit, the only thing that changes every few years is the name of the head wanker.

Posted by: Sabine | Oct 16 2019 22:55 utc | 81

karlof1 @74:

That’s appreciated; I’ll check it out. Your brief rundown suggests this really is a mostly SAA operation (on the ground at least), with a sprinkling of Russians for expertise and maybe to make the Turkish regulars think twice about engaging.

That’s more or less what I would have expected. However, I’ve been reading quite a lot about Russian troops and units, including in this very post.

If the topic engages our host, some MoA explanation and interpretation would be helpful.

Posted by: David G | Oct 16 2019 23:06 utc | 82

Wars are only continued by people that live in the past. Living for revenge rather than a better future for the living. Get over it.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Oct 16 2019 23:07 utc | 83

Patrokolos @70 Bemildred @72--

Unlike JFK, Trump hasn't directly attacked the interests of the Current Oligarchy. Instead, he's fattened their portfolios and wallets. When the Gravy Train keeps delivering Gravy, you don't get off without an exceptional reason for doing so.

Posted by: karlof1 | Oct 16 2019 23:12 utc | 84

Kurds... The only thing that comes to my mind when it comes to Kurds is a famous 'Forever alone' meme.
It is sad that this unique nationality is forced to go through such trials.
It is sad that so far they have not had a smart enough and responsible leader to do everything right.

By the way, the US benefit can be much more than just Trump's fulfillment of his promise "to get back our guys home".
The well-known Russian political scientist Rostislav Ishchenko in his article rightly notes the advantages that the United States gains by withdrawing its troops. The withdrawal of US troops may become a time bomb in terms of stability/strength of the relations that the countries of the region have developed with Russia and among themselves (for example, the negotiation format where Iran and Turkey are adjacent). Not to mention the purely financial costs - as usual, others will have "to clean up the shit" for the Americans. Take, for example, Raqqa destroyed by them - the burden of rebuilding the city will fall, including on Russia. It’s a waste of resources - economic, military, etc.
An interesting article, recommended for reading.

Posted by: alaff | Oct 16 2019 23:12 utc | 85

Apologies, according to Olie Richardson, the fields east the Deir Ezzor are still in US hands. Read here his interesting thread on Trump's comments regarding the pull-out:

Posted by: Lozion | Oct 16 2019 23:21 utc | 86

David G

I would guess Russian presence would be similar to what has occurred previously in Syria. Russian military police, Sunni Chechens in Sunni areas as a go between until previous militant groups fully reintegrate back into Syria, and small units of special forces on the front lines to help against the Jihadists. Erdogan no doubt is aware of the Russian response in Georgia when Russian forces were killed in South Ossetia. Erdogan may call off the jihadists, or they may have been sent back into Syria to die, but I doubt there will be any Turk military attacks. I would guess that if the US look like they are loitering somewhere, the front lines will be opened up and jihadists backed by the Turkish military will push in that direction.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Oct 16 2019 23:24 utc | 87

@56 I think the so-called 'liberals' probably got takfiris mixed up somehow with antifa. Also the MSM was very good at morphing head-choppers into moderate rebels when needed. Very important to make Assad the arch villain so they have a figure to hate. If the SAA turn into good guys we'll know it's game over.

Posted by: dh | Oct 16 2019 23:29 utc | 88

This is really great news. Thanks for another great article B.

Posted by: Josh | Oct 16 2019 23:29 utc | 89

#87 Lozion

Went to Ollie Richardson and did not see a sentence abour the oil fields of Deir Ezzor.

can you signal where he talks about it?

Posted by: CerlD | Oct 16 2019 23:33 utc | 90

Karlof1 @85

Good point. If you're going to be a POTUS who goes off the reservation make sure to make a right turn rather than a left.

Posted by: Patroklos | Oct 16 2019 23:48 utc | 91

Sabine @76--

"... co-operate and start working together."

That's precisely what's been ongoing ever since Russia entered the war in 2015 ( and was already occurring between Syria and its allies before). It's also the philosophy espoused by Xi, Putin and their allied partners--Win-Win versus Zero-sum. They underline the UN's 2030 Development Goals and form the basis for the UN Charter. Most fundamentally, they are the requisites for primate survival. Yes, evil forces have long worked against their becoming universally applied; but we've reached a moment in the human timeline where those forces are no longer capable of controlling the majority of humanity. As I concluded the previous thread @300, we're witnessing the beginnings of a paradigm shift/change that's a must for humanity's continuing wellbeing and improvement. Yes, the forces of Reaction will continue their labors, and those must be forestalled. But the only way to civility is to bury those forces for all time. And if they insist on living by the sword, then that's how they shall perish.

Posted by: karlof1 | Oct 16 2019 23:49 utc | 92

Much has transpired in the three days since this was written. Nonetheless . . .

Posted by: Evelyn | Oct 16 2019 23:51 utc | 93

@85 karlof1... i agree with your statement.. needs to be said more often..

@ 87 lozion.. ditto carls comment @91.. i didn't see it.. thanks for your various posts too..

Posted by: james | Oct 16 2019 23:52 utc | 94

@ Patroklos 70
I wonder how often assassination has been seriously considered in various circles
Recall (if you can) that President Kennedy's Peace Offensive started in June 1963, with a speech at American University, and he was assassinated in November of that year.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 16 2019 23:53 utc | 95

@4 with a space in the name is not me.

I agree with Ghost Ship. Clearly the exit from Manbij was hurried but if the thousands of American troops and contractors make it safely to Iraq and Jordon it will be a successful evacuation. In a warzone this is always an iffy undertaking. There has to be coordination for Russian troops to get in between the Turks and Syrians.

It has flown under the radar, but last Friday an Iranian oil tanker was hit with two missiles with damage above the water line identical to the earlier incidences. Iranians say it has to be a nation state. But who wants a rise in oil prices and/or a war with Iran? The explosion of delusional agitprop from corporate media about the Kurds being stabbed in the back indicates that there are very powerful people who want the USA to continue fighting endless unwinnable wars around the globe and keep the Shiite Crescent cut in particular. English language has yet to find the right word but “liberal” does not describe those who profit from forever wars. “Greedy incompetent billionaires” is a fairly close.

Posted by: VietnamVet | Oct 16 2019 23:54 utc | 96

@ Don Bacon 96

Although Trump has done right by his class peers with taxation, etc, the MIC can hardly be happy with the bottom line implied by 'no needless wars'. Those stockpiled bombs and bullets aren't going to fire themselves. There are oligarchs and MIC oligarchs. An interesting contradiction in capitalism is its relationship to war—it thrive on it and abhors it in equal measure. Trump needs to be careful walking that line.

Posted by: Patroklos | Oct 16 2019 23:59 utc | 97

People shouldn't put too much stock in the histrionics from political actors and media personalities over Trump out-maneuvering them. It is just for show. Once they accept that their imperial adventure in Syria is finished (at least for now and the near future) and realize that their theatrics over it are counterproductive (public opinion starts shifting more towards Trump), the talking heads and stuffed suits will shut of the fake tears and hand-wringing and move on to the next manufactured crisis. It's not even like they will gently segue into the next act. It will be like flipping a switch. Today it is all about Kurds and then suddenly all mention of them will disappear from the media. The establishment is confident that the people have the attention spans of gnats with the long term memories to match, and where most of the population is concerned they are correct, so into the memory hole the whole incident will go because the public cannot be left with the knowledge that the establishment can be beaten.

Posted by: William Gruff | Oct 17 2019 0:04 utc | 98

When DJT and his advisers withdraw all U$ troops from Syria, and the Syrian people and Assad regain territorial integrity, then, they get their deserved kudos, but, not until that scenario occurs.

IMO, this limited pull-back is nothing more than electoral theater, but, we'll see.

Gee, only 800 hundred or so more bases around the globe to go..

Posted by: ben | Oct 17 2019 0:06 utc | 99

@ Patroklos 98
It's not just the oligarchs, it's also the vast institution of the security state originated in 1947. That includes most importantly the huge intelligence community which has the inherent freedom to do whatever it chooses.
In 1963 Kennedy was negotiating detente and peace with Kruschev, including the Partial Test Ban Treaty. Kennedy was an articulate, persuasive operator who could make deals. He was assassinated. Currently we have another president on a peace offensive, primarily with Russia. Again.
Just sayin', since you raised the subject.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 17 2019 0:13 utc | 100

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