Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
November 15, 2019

Author Of "Keep The Oil" Mission Already Distances Himself From Its Foreseeable Failure

The neo-conservatives who have duped President Trump into the "steal the oil" scheme in Syria are already distancing themselves from the plan. They know that it will end in failure.

Yesterday the New York Times tried to insinuate that the U.S. military was behind the idea to steal Syria's oil:

Days after President Trump’s abrupt decision to withdraw 1,000 American troops from Syria, Gen. Mark A. Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, saw a way to turn it around.

The businessman in Mr. Trump had focused on the Syrian oil fields that, if left unprotected, could fall into the hands of the Islamic State — or Russia or Iran. So General Milley proposed to a receptive Mr. Trump that American commandos, along with allied Syrian Kurdish fighters, guard the oil.

Today, 800 American troops remain in Syria.

“We’re keeping the oil,” Mr. Trump told reporters on Wednesday before his meeting with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey. “We left troops behind, only for the oil."
...
“I credit Milley with convincing the president to modify his Syria decision,” said Jack Keane, the former Army vice chief of staff, who spoke several times with Mr. Trump and General Milley last month during the frenzied days of the president’s zigzagging Syria policy.

But the article later says that it was not General Milley's idea. He had different plans:

One proposal would have kept a small force to help control a small swath of the border between Iraq and Syria, about 10 percent of the area. Another option would try to keep control of a larger part of the country — more than half of the area the American and Kurdish fighters currently controlled.
But after Mr. Trump told General Milley he wanted to keep the oil fields, the Pentagon quickly “operationalized” a new plan wrapped around using American forces and their Kurdish allies to protect the oil ...

The report also conflicts with earlier reporting by NBC which said that it was the head of the neoconservative Institute for the Study of War Jack Keane himself and the neoconned Senator Graham Lindsay who duped Trump into the stupid plan:

In the days after President Donald Trump paved the way for Turkey to invade Syria, several of his closest allies went to the White House — twice — to try to change his mind, according to four people familiar with the meetings.

Retired Gen. Jack Keane, a Fox News analyst, first walked the president through a map showing Syria, Turkey and Iraq on Oct. 8, pointing out the locations of oil fields in northern Syria that have been under the control of the United States and its Kurdish allies, two people familiar with the discussion said. That oil, they said Keane explained, would fall into Iran's hands if Trump withdrew all U.S. troops from the country.

Keane went through the same exercise with Trump again Oct. 14, this time with Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., at his side, according to four people familiar with the meeting. Keane displayed a map showing that almost three quarters of Syria's oil fields are in the parts of the country where U.S. troops are deployed, the people familiar with the meeting said. They said that Graham and Keane told the president that Iran is preparing to move toward the oil fields and could seize the air space above them once the U.S. leaves.

So why is Keane now trying to blame General Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, for causing that nonsense?

It may be that he recognizes that the operation will likely go bad.

The fight against ISIS was led by nimble U.S. special force units who are trained to travel light and to work with local proxy forces. These have now been replaced by heavier army units with Infantry Fighting Vehicles.

These tracked vehicles need a lot of gas and maintenance support. Those logistic needs are easy to attack.

The U.S. special forces were previously joined by French and British ones. Those allies are not willing to join the steal-the-oil mission:

At a high-level State Department meeting scheduled for Thursday, diplomats from 35 nations and international organizations will be asked to stick with the campaign to eradicate the extremist group even after its leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, was killed in an American raid last month.

But confusion over the Trump administration’s policy in northeast Syria has discouraged allies, according to several diplomats, who said it has fomented doubt that whatever agreements are struck could be reversed by the president.
...
One foreign diplomat said Thursday’s meeting would focus on what he described as a loss of clear strategy by the United States in Syria. Another predicted the high-level talks would amount to little more than a meet-and-greet.

The diplomats also know that mission creep is part of the new plan:

“It’s quite clear that the president has been convinced to retain troops on the only basis that might have been of interest to him — the existence of oil,” said Charles R. Lister, a senior fellow at the Middle East Institute. “But the much bigger U.S. government apparatus is trying to use that as a cover to form a more meaningful, less ambiguous and more sustainable strategy focused on countering terrorism while reasserting leverage over Damascus.”

The new neo-con plan is still the old one. To use terrorists to achieve "regime change" in Syria. It will (again) fail.

The U.S. army in east Syria will pay some PKK Kurds to use as guards and to screen the area. But the oilfield areas are Arab and the PKK Kurds are very much disliked by the Arab population.

The locals are unlikely to welcome the oil stealing foreigners. They have profited from smuggling oil to government held areas and will resist a U.S. occupation and to Kurds who interfere with their business. A number of people in that area had joined ISIS and slipped back into the 'local civilian' role when it was clear that ISIS had lost the battle. Some of them will (again) be willing to fight.

Yesterday the Syrian President Bashar Assad gave an interview to two Russian TV stations during which he predicted exactly that:

Question 12: Mr. President, according to the media, Trump announced an expansion of American presence in Syria, particularly in the northeast of the country, under the pretext of protecting the oil fields. Is there a military solution to this problem? And when would such a military operation start?

President Assad: I have always said that an occupier cannot occupy a piece of land without having agents in that country, because it would be difficult for them to live in a completely hostile environment. Therefore, the immediate and most effective solution is for us to unite as Syrians and as patriots. This would cause the Americans to leave, and they would not be able to stay, neither for oil nor for anything else.

However, with time, when the occupier remains – the Iraq experience is still fresh in the minds of Americans and the result, for them, was unexpected; for us however, it was clear and I did say in one of my interviews after the invasion of Iraq in 2003 that occupation will generate military resistance. Similarly, the American presence in Syria will generate a military resistance which will exact losses among the Americans, and consequently force them to leave. Of course, we are not contemplating a Russian-American confrontation, this is self-evident, and it doesn’t serve neither our interests, nor the Russians nor international stability; it is dangerous. However, America cannot believe that it will live comfortably in any area it occupies. We remind them of Iraq and Afghanistan, and Syria will not be an exception.

Assad also expressed a realistic view of the U.S. government system:

Question 13: Concerning the American behavior here, particularly in relation to Syrian oil, don’t you believe that this behavior is that of a government gang? And what are the losses to Syria as a result of Washington’s behavior?

President Assad: You are absolutely correct, not only because they are looting oil, but because America is structured as a political system of gangs. The American president does not represent a state – he is the company CEO, and behind this CEO there is a board of directors which represent the big companies in America – the real owners of the state – oil and arms companies, banks, and other lobbies. So, in reference to Syrian oil, this is the expected result of the American regime, which is led by companies acting for their own interests.

Assad goes on to explain that to steal-the-oil was also the Nazi's reason to invade the Soviet Union. He further observes:

[W]e can very simply liken American policy today with Nazi policy: expansion, invasion, undermining the interests of other nations, trampling on international law, international conventions, human principles, and others – all for the sake of oil. What’s the difference between this policy and Nazi policy? Can anybody from the American regime give us an answer to this question? I don’t think so.

In a recent Q&A Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov also remarked on U.S. policies in Syria:

[The Turkish] operation Peace Spring was not endorsed by Russia. It was endorsed by the United States, if you are accurate with the facts. They tried to negotiate with Turkey but then said they could not reach the deal so “Kurds, you are on your own, we are leaving.” Then, after they left the Kurds and left Syria, they said they do not have any more obligations to the Kurds but they are coming back for oil (not for the Kurds). It is an interesting zigzagging in foreign policy. Back to Churchill, who said that the Americans always do the right thing after they have tried everything else.

Lavrov also dropped strong hints that the U.S. is still supporting Jihadis:

I have reasons to believe, based on the real examples of the past years, that the United States still supports al-Nusra in spite of the fact that this organisation has been listed in the United States as terrorist. They see al-Nusra as a counterbalance against the Syrian Government. It’s another mistake, after they were banking on the mujahideen, who organised the September 11 terrorist attack. After they did what they did in Iraq and ISIS was born. And now they are grooming al-Nusra in the illusionary expectation that they will be able to control them. It’s an illusion.

In a different interview Lavrov's boss, President Vladimir Putin, also chipped in:

[Putin] added that he considers US presence in Syria as illegitimate because "those armed units are stationed there not on the invitation of the Syrian government or in the framework of a UN Security Council resolution." "This military presence is illegal," he stressed.

The steal-the-oil mission is illegal under international and likely also under U.S. law. That is why no major oil company will want to have anything to do with it.

The whole operation is destined to fail.

The U.S. has sent in heavy units which are quite immobile and require lots of maintenance and supplies that can be attacked. It has no allies except for a few PKK/YPG Kurds who are disliked by the local Arabs. Mission creep will soon set in. Resistance against the occupation will grow and the U.S. troops will take casualties. Then Trump will again order them to pull out.

That is why Keane now claims that to steal-the-oil was not his idea but General Milley's. He does not want to be remembered for causing the all too predictable mess in which the operation will end.

Russian troops have just taken over an airbase that the U.S. special forces had used for their resupply. They found (vid) ready made air conditioned quarters with good mattresses, gym equipment, entertainment and medical supplies. They will put it all to good use.

They will later do the same with the new bases the U.S. army is now building near the oilfields.

Posted by b on November 15, 2019 at 19:06 UTC | Permalink

Comments
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It probably makes sense for the US military to steal the oil since it is the world's largest consumer of it.

Posted by: Vonu | Nov 15 2019 19:12 utc | 1

For someone whose education was mainly in medicine and opthalmology, and whose political knowledge came largely as a quick crash course after the unexpected death of his older brother in a car accident in the mid-1990s a few years before his father died, President Bashar al Assad knows the US govt better than most of its own career politicians and bureaucrats know it. It is indeed no more and no better than - if anything it is far worse - international crime networks like the Sicilian and Calabrian mafias.

Posted by: Jen | Nov 15 2019 19:21 utc | 2

A Middle East expert who spoke here last week claims that there is no oil to seize in Syria. He said that the US bombed the oilfields so intensively that there is no oil production left. While there is still oil in the ground it will take about eight years to get it into production again.

It sounds like yet another case of the blind leading the blind when it comes to foreign policy.

Posted by: JohnH | Nov 15 2019 19:25 utc | 3

Biggest consumer of oil and largest source of bull shit

Posted by: Flint | Nov 15 2019 19:25 utc | 4

Going back to 1980 at least, Trump has always said "keep the oil". 2016 Trump said US should grab Syrian oil when asked about Syria. Taking the oil is pure, original Trump and not forced on him by anyone.
Circumstances, namely Turk threats to invade gave Trump domestically the chance to dump useless territory that the US spent money holding and would do so endlessly (another endless war for no return), and concentrate on the oil.
After saying the US was pulling out, announcing US was keeping the oil was like throwing a bone to his domestic opponents of a pullout. A win win situation US style. Neo-cons get to stay in Syria and Trump gets to hold the oil but not have to hold useless territory.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 15 2019 19:28 utc | 5

When announcing that we were keeping the oil, trump was trying to safeguard his image as tough. By withdrawing completely, no doubt his opposition will orchestrate a media backlash something to the effect of, "see how weak this orange guy is on Russia and Iran? By running he allowed this and this atrocity to happen against our moderate rebel friends, their sisters and daughters, and all their household pets. And I'm just getting word that a mass grave of Labrador puppies has been discovered."

The problem is is that the Don just ain't too smart. And that certainly doesn't help when you listen to morons like Keene. You could never hold a force there indefinitely, just as Assad says.

He should have stuck to his guns and got up and left sooner, announcing it was a fool's errand. But the Don likes to play at being tough. Too much John Wayne movies.

This whole affair once again paints the neocons as completeLy braindead.

But Donald's vanity is a huge weak spot for him. That and the concerted effort that is coming to paint him as a weakling.

Well...man up Sally!

Posted by: Nemesiscalling | Nov 15 2019 19:32 utc | 6

..." a political system of gangs"..., ..."the real owners of the state – oil and arms companies, banks, and other lobbies."...

The banks again, Rothschild controlled that is. Syria not being one, and now aligned with Iran's central bank to facilitate financial transactions. ..."Iran-Syria economic relations have entered a new phase and recent banking deals are an important message for companies and a serious step for expansion of exchanges between trades and businesses of the two countries,” said Hemmati during the meeting."...

https://www.presstv.com/DetailFr/2019/09/02/605150/Iran-Syria-joint-bank-plan-Hemmati-Karfoul

Running afoul of the controlling tentacles of the world banking creature. Assad thankfully spells out the danger, which most of us already know, nice to hear that from him.

Posted by: Taffyboy | Nov 15 2019 19:35 utc | 7

JohnH 3

Has been continuous production of oil in east Syria. I don't think US bombed any oil infrastructure in Hasakah province, and in Deir Ezzor province, they mainly hit oil infrastructure west of the Euphrates. They did claim at times to hit well heads east of the euphrates but this was rare. Most US department of Defence reports had them hitting ISIS excavators and so forth.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 15 2019 19:48 utc | 8

b: The U.S. has send in heavy units which are quite immobile and require lots of maintenance and supplies that can be attacked.

That's true, but the Pentagon's regular army troops are tied up elsewhere so weekend warriors were sent to Syria.

Military.com, Oct 31, 2019
Army Col. Miles Caggins III, spokesman for Operation Inherent Resolve (OIR) in Iraq, sent out a tweet Thursday showing images of M2A2 Bradley fighting vehicles being loaded onto C-17 Globemaster aircraft to support the oil field mission near Deir ez-Zor, Syria.
The tweet names the North Carolina National Guard's 4th Battalion, 118th Infantry Regiment, 30th Armored Brigade Combat Team, as the unit selected for the mission. The 4-118 is attached to the South Carolina Guard's 218th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade. . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Nov 15 2019 19:52 utc | 9

Map opens on Yemen but scroll and zoom to east Syria.
ISWN Middle East conflict map.
Map shows border crossings from Iraq Kurdistan into Syria and Iraq into Syria. As for the Iraq crossings, US will be doing as it pleases for some time due to US backed protests and Iraq government being in a mess.
The map also shows a couple of US bases along the Euphrates in Deir Ezzor Province plus a firebase just across the border in Iraq.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 15 2019 20:05 utc | 10

Thanks for the Syria follow on posting b.

This is all about bullying and blustering while the musical chairs are stolen and rearranged so that when the music stops, what is left of empire will still be allowed to live.

Of course I hope that doesn't happen but what other strategy can be observed from this worldwide blustering, bullying, fake color revolutions and coups like in Bolivia recently? As I have documented in the recent Open Thread, the current host and face of empire, America, is operating on economic fumes and is being set up for the stealing of savings and pensions with "legal" Superior-Positioned derivatives.

Trump is another puppet in a string of such "leadership" in America. The real control is exercised by the cabal of international folks that own the tools of global private finance like the BIS, IMF, World Bank, the 12 regional US Fed banks as well as many other countries Central Banks.......but not China's yet and hopefully never.

When the Weekend Warrior National Guard body bags start coming home, the oil fields in Syria will return to the rightful ownership of that country.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Nov 15 2019 20:18 utc | 11


nice one, Bernhard, thanks for this - bringing it all together.

the neo-con con artists aren't called 'cons' for nothing ya know.


Posted by: michaelj72 | Nov 15 2019 20:35 utc | 12

After reading Assad's comments about Donald Trump's "take the oil" policy in Syria, I am convinced that Assad has a firmer understanding of not only his own country, but also that of the political system in the US and of Donald Trump. Therefore I call for making Assad our next US Secretary of State and/or the chief of the National Security Council. We at least should get a much saner foreign policy.

Posted by: GeorgeV | Nov 15 2019 20:37 utc | 13

I don't think it is a one Off, but a systematic policy that the "occupied" country pays for being occupied by the US military.
Examples: As well as seizing the oil wells in Syria, he has asked South Korea to pay more for the troops on it's soil. A large part of the expenses of bases in Germany (48'000 troops)and Italy (80-85 bases) are paid for by themselves, on top of the NATO costs. Etc.

One other point is that at the start of the Syrian war, Erdogan's family were already profiting from the theft then sale of Eastern Syrian oil. (Presumably to Israel at that date). Which went northwards to Turkish territoy and then down to the Med and then to Haifa. Erdogan is possibly expecting the new stolen oil to travel northwards and fill his coffers again by the same route.

Posted by: stonebird | Nov 15 2019 20:47 utc | 14

What drove the US out of Iraq the first time was a simple device called an explosively formed projectile [EFP] it consisted of a steel pipe packed with high explosive with a disk of copper at the end, this was placed at the side of roads frequented by US army patrols, they could easily be disguised as rocks or other common features of the landscape, Initially they were set off by electronic means i.e. a cell phone, garage door opener or other such device. The US spent billions and asked Government research laboratories and universities to counter this phenomenon, they succeeded at first when convoys were headed by a vehicle bristling with antennae, the Iraqis were one step ahead of them, they started using a piece of string, game over. An EFP can destroy the latest tanks, on detonation the disk is propelled thus.... EFP 20 cm (8 inches) in diameter can throw a 3 kg (7 lbs) copper slug at Mach 6, or 2,000 meters per second. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Explosively_formed_penetrator

Posted by: Harry Law | Nov 15 2019 21:10 utc | 15

I still do not believe that Trump seriously expects to be able to keep Syria's oil. It is like a monkey trap. Sure, America can hold the oil, but cannot take it. I realize that many Americans are stupid, but eventually they will realize that they cannot do anything with the oil and they will have to let it go.

Trump's loud noises about taking the oil are a standard con artist trick. The huckster will wave something shiny in one hand to distract the easy mark while he robs that mark with the other hand. The US could never have the oil unless it had first succeeded in installing a vassal state in Syria, and even then it would require a lot of work. The "Take the oil!" shout was just the shiny thing waved to the public and to the deep state (which is no brighter than the public) to get them to accept moving America's occupation forces from relatively secure positions that are politically difficult to uproot them from to completely untenable positions where even idiots should eventually see the futility in remaining.

Trump tells the military to get out, but they start slow-walking the evacuation while the CIA & Co try to cook up another FF to justify staying. That's when Trump says "Hey, let's take the oil!". Now it is not an evacuation, but rather something that sounds ballsy and tough, just how Americans like to think of themselves, so the military hustles over to the oil fields. It isn't until a month later that they start to realize that they've been snookered.

Some of us here have known from the beginning of Trump's oil grab that it was completely nonsensical and couldn't work. We knew that American troops will eventually have to bail out of there. Perhaps Trump is stupid and frequently changes his mind 180° for no reason. Or maybe Trump could figure out what some of us here could plainly see about the oil and he is still trying to achieve what he initially demanded, so he just changed tactics to achieve what he wants.

For those who try to argue "Why doesn't he just order the troops out?", note that he has, and he has been disobeyed. That's treason. That's a hanging offense. If Trump pushes the issue then generals will die... or Trump will die, one or the other. In any case Trump has the choice of ignoring the disobedience and trying something different or starting a feces storm that will have truly dire consequences. It shouldn't surprise that Trump chooses the former over the latter.

Posted by: William Gruff | Nov 15 2019 21:34 utc | 16

@ b.. thanks... best quote ( excluding all the assad quotes!)
"The new neo-con plan is still the old one. To use terrorists to achieve "regime change" in Syria. It will (again) fail."

2 posters in the past were very explicit on this oil concept ending badly for the usa - flankerbandit and peter au... in fact, both posters are regularly keeping us up to date on the reality on the ground.. thanks you 2! but thanks especially b for all your work and what you provide to the world here at moa... thank you..

Posted by: james | Nov 15 2019 21:38 utc | 17

i forgot to include william gruff in that comment, as he has been on the ball here too... thanks wg!!

Posted by: james | Nov 15 2019 21:40 utc | 18

US foreign policy is rife with incompetence & corruption. This decision is the outcome of that. Although I in no way wish harm to come upon our troops, I also know that the one thing that would wake up the American people is casualties as a result of "stealing the oil". Americans hate soldiers in body bags. I hope Milley bounces this right back onto the shoulders of the 2 idiots that tallked Trump into this in the first place.

Posted by: Annie | Nov 15 2019 21:58 utc | 19

I'm sure my Amerika will be sending a bill to the Russians for the items left behind;-)

Posted by: jo6pac | Nov 15 2019 23:18 utc | 20

I think William Gruff has nailed it...

For those who try to argue "Why doesn't he just order the troops out?", note that he has, and he has been disobeyed. That's treason. That's a hanging offense. If Trump pushes the issue then generals will die... or Trump will die, one or the other.

In any case Trump has the choice of ignoring the disobedience and trying something different or starting a feces storm that will have truly dire consequences. It shouldn't surprise that Trump chooses the former over the latter.

I think the scenarios being put out by the lugenpresse are farcical...they have nothing to do with what actually happened...which details we won't know of course...

I think Trump, for all his warts, genuinely wanted to get out of Syria...I think also he genuinely wanted to improve relations with Russia...

BUT...there is a hugely powerful establishment that wants neither of those things...Trump is just one man, and by the sound of things he has ZERO people around him who agree with this core agenda...

So getting out of Syria has become mission impossible...

BUT...the Turks finally forced the US hand...and the result has been that Northeast Syria has been cracked open...

I watched earlier today that footage of the empty Sarrin base in the vicinity of Manbij I believe...pretty amazing...they even left behind a party game called 'Apples to Apples' lying on one of the bunks...

The Russians say they are going to convert the base for a center for 'humanitarian aid and reconciliation'...

This shows the stark contrast in the approach between the two superpowers...

I remember when East Aleppo finally fell, I phoned a guy who was on the ground there [he happened to be a frequent writer on Syria, typically against Assad, for a supposed 'alternative media' outlet that I shall not name, but which has been thoroughly coopted]...

He told me he was staying with refugees in a vast center the Russians had set up, where people were fed and could live until being helped back to their homes...Russian doctors plus fully equipped military field hospitals were there, which he described as quite impressive...

For years we have had that reconciliation center at Hmeimim that has played an important role in getting jihadists to lay down their weapons and reintegrate into society...

This will be the strategy in the northeast now as well...

The apple is already bitten into, so there is no going back...the SAA and the Russians are shoring up their positions there 24/7...

Along with humanitarian and reconciliation initiatives it becomes simply a matter of time for the inevitable normalization of Syrian society...

Great update from Bernhard as usual...

Posted by: flankerbandit | Nov 15 2019 23:31 utc | 21

@ William Gruff and flankerbandit who seem to think that Trump is a man of his word when he said he wants to bring the troops home from Syria.

With all due respect guys, are you really trying to say that Trump has never flat out lied before? Or that in this specific instance he is undoubtedly telling the "truth"?

I am sorry but I don't buy it and don't think many others do as well. Once a lying grifter, always a lying grifter. Trump is a guy who was out screwing other women when his wife was PG.

I think you are being played by a TV actor here with lots of experience lying to Evangelicals who continue to believe him.

I have a lot of respect for much of what you two bring to the comment section at MoA but have to disagree with this leap of FAITH by both of you.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Nov 16 2019 0:00 utc | 22

With Trump having publicly held the "steal the oil" posion for 40 years, would it really take any convincing? Considering that he has been floating the idea of the occupied countries paying the costs of the occupiers, trying to lay this at the feet of a different neocon (rather than neocon Trump) is probably a tad bit of hopium. I agree that this definitely plays to Trump's ego, and WWE persona, for portraying a Billy Badass.
All of that aside, it's a ridiculous and stupid move with no upside at all. This is just the latest episode of this administration running from failure to failure. The decline of the US empire is irreversible but DC can't accept that reality.

Posted by: Sorghum | Nov 16 2019 0:02 utc | 23

Should be position not poison.

Agreed, psycho.

Posted by: Sorghum | Nov 16 2019 0:04 utc | 24

In that interview Assad also compared the "suicide" of the White helmet terrorist James Le Mesurier and Jeffery Epstein, both men knew too much about the secrets of the corrupt Western elites and had to be eliminated.

Posted by: Kadath | Nov 16 2019 0:07 utc | 25

Stop attributing motivation to Trump he doesn't have. The man knows and cares nothing for geopolitics. He sees Syria as an albatross around the neck of his presidency and wants to end it. Same with Ukraine and Russian relations in general. It is as simple as that...part ego and part common sense.

Posted by: Nemo | Nov 16 2019 0:12 utc | 26

He sees Syria as an albatross around the neck of his presidency and wants to end it.
Please, Trump is a 6 times bankrupt scammer from Queens. He saw the opportunity to grab and steal, and that is the present outcome. That may not last.

Posted by: Duncan Idaho | Nov 16 2019 0:20 utc | 27

As always, thanks b, but I don't think king DJT was duped into anything, he's just playing
from the playbook in his imagination, and meanwhile, trying to enrich himself by hook or by crook. That's why the empire's sycophants are after him.

When, through your own greed, you deviate from the empire's playbook, there's hell to pay.

He's trying to take down another empire sycophant, in the person of one J. Biden. That is not permitted.

He's not fighting the "deep state" but he's fighting one of their trusted soldiers, and that threatens "the system", so the circus in D.C. is his punishment.

Posted by: ben | Nov 16 2019 0:35 utc | 28

Dump on Trump if it makes you feel good but facts are facts, and big facts beat little ones. If you don't like Trump what's your solution? ..You don't have one. So live with what exists, and look on the bright side. It's actually healthier.

Picky, picky, grumbly people should learn to see the forest, not the trees.
>Trump the outsider was elected, beating the best that the two major parties could throw at him.
>No new wars under Trump, no now countries being destroyed, which beats the previous two presidents and definitely beats the only other choice that was offered to the citizenry, Hillary.
>No large-scale shooting wars going on as under the past two presidents.
>No Pacific Partnership, and no hesitation to dump on European freeloaders.
>A real chance of an opening to Russia, which would be a serious blow to the establishment, part of which is a half-million man ground force which depends mightily upon Russia as an enemy, to exist.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Nov 16 2019 0:38 utc | 29

psychoh@22; Can't disagree with anything in that post. If people would simply read about king DJT's history, they might feel differently...

Posted by: ben | Nov 16 2019 0:40 utc | 30

Wow! As crass and idiotic as Trump may appear with his tweets, he is far smarter than his critics. He plays the role of the ugly American sans mask and some of you take it seriously! Lol! What happened to kayfabe? Do you even know what it means? Trump is not some sinister deep plant of the establishment. He is exactly what he appears to be, a vain, egotistical tycoon playing at being potus. He knows murica has no ability to steal Syria's oil. It is all a farce to make his political enemies look bad by spelling out their goals in public...reductio ad absurdum. Why do you think he said Russia would love it? Well, they do! It makes for great talking points about how criminal American behaviour in the world is. Assad knows this and knows it is a sign the end is near. Some of you need to calm down and enjoy the empire's demise.

Posted by: Nemo | Nov 16 2019 0:46 utc | 31

@ ben who wrote
"
He's not fighting the "deep state" but he's fighting one of their trusted soldiers, and that threatens "the system", so the circus in D.C. is his punishment.
"

I agree that D.C is a circus that is keeping people from demanding changing our world for the better and prosecuting the criminals.

I disagree that Trump is anything but another complicit PRO wrestler in the ring.

Back to my comment about Trump wanting bring the troops home. The war in Syria was turned around during Obama's time in office. Trump is just one of the players wailing and screaming all the way out so it doesn't look like the defeat of empire that it really is. And, if Trump was a real peace maker, why the coup in Bolivia, sanctions against everyone and nary a good deed done for any but the rich at home? America and Americans are being set up for a Shock Doctrine event and very few can see the writing on the wall.

Wake up political Evangelicals!!!! You faith against reason and logic is killing your fellow humans every day.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Nov 16 2019 0:49 utc | 32

@29: Meanwhile DB, him and his regime our screwing over the rank and file Americans with
crap like this;

Under Trump, E.P.A. Has Slowed Actions Against Polluters, and Put Limits on Enforcement Officers.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/10/us/politics/pollution-epa-regulations.html

This is the tip of the iceburg..

His regime is rolling back regs. that protect average Americans from corporate greed.

There is more..

Posted by: ben | Nov 16 2019 0:53 utc | 33

Bacon, you just keep reinforcing my impression of you, campaigner.
Remember when you told me I needed to educate myself about the pullout you were crowing about and linked to videos that only showed the troops leaving the border? That isn't the first time you've sent me "proof" that didn't stand up to anything more than the link being clicked.
That last post was such utter garbage you should be ashamed of yourself. Because the completely corrupt empire refuses to cough up a leader with even a shred of decency, I should just STFU and be happy with the shit-show of depravity, violence, looting, and evil? No new wars? Still humping that lie? I see you loved the goalposts to "large scale shooting wars". Now murder isn't murder if you only kill a few at a time? A real chance with Russia? How are you people still so deluded by the words of a serial con man after he has proven for 3 years that everything he says is a lie? European freeloaders? You accuse Europe of this while your stable genius just racked up the largest monthly deficit ever? 134B, up 34% from last year.
https://www.cryptogon.com/?p=56482
SMH at the blizzard of BS surrounding Trump. I thought there was a lot around Obama, but Trump has exceeded him in that, too.

Posted by: Sorghum | Nov 16 2019 0:57 utc | 34

Psycho...nobody has any illusions about Trump...

I certainly don't think he gives a shit about the truth...or really most other human virtues...he's an unprincipled grifter...

But he's also not stupid...he was able to read the mood of the people...those 'deplorables' in flyover country...who see themselves and their families sinking ever deeper into the mire...while the completely disconnected beltway elite tries to pull them along into these endless foreign wars...

People simply refuse to be pulled along any more...why do you think Tulsi is now surging, despite all the efforts to bury her...?

Everybody knows that having troops in Syria [or Iraq, or fill in blank] is a waste of taxpayer money, and also lives for those unfortunate families that get that phone call...

Having said that I also think Trump sees the stupidity of this...that this course is leading the country to ruin...

I see also that he does in fact admire Putin...that is clear just from his body language at that Helsinki summit...

So, like every man, Trump also has his own convictions and things he believes in...

Here's what I think is much more likely to have happened rather than these fairy tales spun by the lugenpresse...

When Trump gave the order to pull out of Syria entirely...the minions simply went into insubordination mode...I can see high ranking officials, both civilian and uniformed, telling Trump simply 'NO'...'I'm not going to do that...if you want my resignation here it is...'

Not to mention the Lindsey Grahams and other powerful Congress critters...

Everybody and his dog in Washignton would have been all over Trump 24/7 after that executive order...

He was simply forced to back down...it's happened before to much better men...

The 'let's keep the oil' line is simply a face-saving gesture that Trump needs for his image and his all important base...I'm sure a lot of people in his base are disappointed as hell...and probably pissed at Trump for chickening out again...

But really I don't want to make this about Trump...this is about Syria...the situation now is what it is...that US contingent is bottled up in that small area where there are really no native Kurds...

It is a stupid and untenable situation...and it is exactly illustrative of the insanity of the neocon die-harders and the regime-change die-harders that they would keep clinging like this...

I previously described it as a man clinging to a reed against a raging river...this is it...everybody knows this...

The sad thing for me is that various Kurds Turds like that scumbag Mazloum Abdi, the SDF commander, are still with the US...even after all the betrayals...not just the latest, but also Afrin, Euphrates Shield etc...

This is going to be the problem going forward...and this is what the neocons are betting on...that they can slice off enough Kurds to put a stick in the normalization of the northeast region...

Posted by: flankerbandit | Nov 16 2019 1:00 utc | 35

Agree also with The Baconator...

When all is said and done would you rather have Hillary...?

I don't think so...

Posted by: flankerbandit | Nov 16 2019 1:05 utc | 36

"With all due respect guys, are you really trying to say that Trump has never flat out lied before?" --psychohistorian @22

No, psychohistorian, I think he is a con artist and is comfortable with lying. You are probably just confused about what it is he is that he is lying about.

We can assume that Trump lied about getting Americans out of Syria but really wanted to keep them there, but that he screwed it up such that America's footprint in Syria was dramatically reduced.

Or we can assume that Trump lied about wanting Syria's trivial oil reserves and wanted to maneuver America into a position where they will have to leave Syria and cut their losses, and succeeded in that.

I can understand people feeling compelled to refuse to face that Trump won, but I think in this case Trump won. Trump demanded that the US troops get out. He was obstructed. He maneuvered circumstances such that the US now has no choice but to get out. Sure, it is political judo, but it really isn't so complicated. Considering the massive incompetence and hubris that pervades the so-called "deep state", it doesn't take an act of genius to trip them up.

Posted by: William Gruff | Nov 16 2019 1:09 utc | 37

duped Trump into 'keeping the Oil'


seriously? is this another case of conservatives can not fail they can only be failed?
The guys was openly stating that "I WOULD KEEP THE OIL"

2015

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ySdhGyqGCZk

2011
https://www.wsj.com/video/trump-we-should-take-libya-oil/7E12BC15-38AE-465F-949A-CDB65ED6DC75.html

2016
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q7oT_wL1C84

2017
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Iog4KMza6I

ohmygosh he can't believe they did not take the oil

https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2018/11/trump-iraq-oil


seriously?

Posted by: Sabine | Nov 16 2019 1:34 utc | 38

Posted by: William Gruff | Nov 16 2019 1:09 utc | 37

yeah, nah, nah!

Under President Trump, there are now more troops in the Middle East than when he took office, and he has continued the mission for tens of thousands of others far from the wars of 9/11.

from here https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/21/world/middleeast/us-troops-deployments.html


Oh well.........who cares about the 'middle east' right.

Posted by: Sabine | Nov 16 2019 1:39 utc | 39

WG said...

Considering the massive incompetence and hubris that pervades the so-called "deep state"...

Indeed...

Now here is something to consider that many folks are blissfully unaware of...there is no real chain of command anymore...

We saw this quite clearly during that infamous 'coalition' bombing raid on SAA troops in Deir Ezzor, just hours after the ink had dried on the Lavrov-Kerry agreement...

Who was responsible for this...I would bet dollars to donuts it wasn't Joe Dunford, the then Chief of Staff...

Clearly somebody below him decided to pull INSUBORDINATION...

This kind of rot is now completely part of the fabric in both Washington and the military...everybody's a free agent...you can do whatever the fuck you want because there are never any real consequences...

We had that Navy corruption thing a while back with all those Admirals taking kickbacks on procurement graft...we've had guys in uniform who moonlight as porn actors/producers...

Today we have another scandal out of Okinawa...

US Pilots Read Books, Take Drugs While Flying Fighter Jets In Japan

A midair was the result...the local Japs are rightly outraged that next time it may well fall on the heads of innocent people...

This is not a military...it is a joke...

And where does this come from...obviously the fish stinks from the head...Washington is even more undisciplined...no one gives a shit about any chain of command or authority or anything else...

We saw that with the publication in the NYT of that infamous 'anonymous' oped, where they gleefully admit to sabotaging the president...the 'steady state' they called themselves...talk about brazen...

Posted by: flankerbandit | Nov 16 2019 1:43 utc | 40

There is no way that the US can continue to occupy the Syrian oil fields. It makes absolutely no sense. Once Trump with drew us troops along the Turkey-Syria border in the NE the US lost a major foot hold. Right now the US forces along the Iraq-Syrian border are apposed by both the Iraqi and Syrian governments. Logistically how can they remain there?? No way the the US can continue to occupy Syria's oil fields in such an isolated position.

For some strange reason Trump let his advisers push him into this ludicrous position.

Posted by: ToivoS | Nov 16 2019 1:48 utc | 41

Thanks b for keeping us well informed - it beats discussions of phony impeachment in the US in my book,(to which I refuse to listen, read, see - whatever) and I am utterly grateful (tired from pedestrian food shopping day) to flankerbandit @ 21 for the ways in which Russians are converting the departed US bunkers into reconciliation and restoration centers for the refugee Syrian citizenry. Going to bed on that warm note.

Thanks all. Don't worry about Trump - his moves are being stymied by countermoves wiser than ours. It doesn't really matter, increasingly, what he is or isn't. We'll reconcile even him at the end of the day.

Posted by: juliania | Nov 16 2019 1:53 utc | 42

Great post by flankerbandit @35, it sums up my views also. Lets try not to make this about the orange outang..

Pantsirs are in Quamishli. Oh and the donkey is gone it seems..

Posted by: Lozion | Nov 16 2019 2:22 utc | 43

Wha 'appen to the Caliph fellows that bribed Trump with a few billion gold last year? Teaching algebra and oil and gold futures/ derisitive trading at Westpoint? Yes, audit Westpoint. Shiny dirt and see thru rocks are worth more than some blood and oil. Certificates and medals maybe too. We won't know if those Caliph guys really existed because the bribe describes 'giving aid to legal unlawful terrists', also maybe Untied Snakes support (negotiating with terrists with one boot on the ground); and so the under-sec of treasury applicable would be too conflicted to even look hard. She could correlate the Haifa refinery, with the causation underground pipe through Jordan for me. The last two winter floods hit the Caliphaters hard. I hope NATO boys and others get the new bases we all deserve double quick/ no expense spared. Thank you for just following orders. Everyone.

Posted by: failure of imaginati | Nov 16 2019 2:36 utc | 44

Why pin it on Gen. Milley? Because the ruse of Trump as 'good guy' fighting an entrenched domestic opposition or foreign adversary 'bad guy' has to be maintained.

Trump is a team-player. He will be well rewarded for being such. Just as the Presidents before him. They don't fight the DS. They aren't intimidated into doing the DS's bidding. They are fully-vetted members of the DS.

To paraphrase Hamlet: ... the ruse's the thing wherein I'll catch the conscience of the King. The King here is the Deep State. And they show themselves by maintaining the ruse of Trump as 'good guy' (and Obama before him, and GW Bush before him, etc.).

Why do so many fail to see the ruse and the kayfabe?

It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.
- Upton Sinclair

!!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Nov 16 2019 2:50 utc | 45

Who cares; if Trump can be "duped" into stupid plans, then he is a stupid president. The competent casino operator (think Adelson) plays on the base greed of his marks. The bankrupt casino operator gets the base greed of his marks only because he shares those sentiments.

Posted by: Ma Laoshi | Nov 16 2019 2:54 utc | 46

NeoCon/PetroUSD/Zionist/Euro-Khazarshenazi Interests involved in various degrees or not, POTUS_45 just reduced the US_Military to the Roles of Regional PetroBandit-Timocrats.

He should have been Impeached for This and Not Getting Out of SYR per his Campaign.

As a Vet, I think it's Due Time to make POTUS_45 an One Term POTUS; but the Most Capable Candidates - Ron Paul + Gabbard - appear to be blocked off by their respective Political Party Chairs.

Posted by: IronForge | Nov 16 2019 3:08 utc | 47

IMO taking the oil fields is part of a larger plan.

Attacking USA/Trump based on "taking the oil fields" and the strawman plan to exploit those oil fields is lazy and misleading because:

1) USA hasn't just "taken" the oil fields, they've been controlling them for quite some time.

2) It seems reasonable to surmise that USA intends to transfer the oil fields to a local entity of their choosing at some point in the future. That could be SDF or "Sunnistan". Any such an entity would have to be immediately recognized by USA and many other countries so that it could be provided with advanced weaponry. Once a legal basis has been established, a major oil company could be engaged to increase production.

!!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Nov 16 2019 3:10 utc | 48

"...because America is structured as a political system of gangs. The American president does not represent a state – he is the company CEO, and behind this CEO there is a board of directors which represent the big companies in America – the real owners of the state – oil and arms companies, banks, and other lobbies."

Sounds as though Assad has read Sheldon Wolin's Democracy Inc. which lays out Inverted Totalitarianism (my bolded text):

"In classical totalitarian regimes, such as those of Nazi fascism or Soviet communism, economics was subordinate to politics. But “under inverted totalitarianism the reverse is true,” Wolin writes. “Economics dominates politics—and with that domination comes different forms of ruthlessness.”He continues: “The United States has become the showcase of how democracy can be managed without appearing to be suppressed.”

https://www.truthdig.com/articles/sheldon-wolin-and-inverted-totalitarianism/

As for the US military instigating the oil theft, this new Syrian chapter represents a denouement into unvarnished banditry and in this way possesses all the subtlety of Mad Max.

Frankly, petrodollar recycling was far more ingenious and elegant wherein the world's prosperity was stolen alright, yet obliquely recycled through dollar fealty, laundered by the money center banks, then used to finance the quid pro quo OPEC security-guarantee.

Recently, like a bolt out of the blue, asymmetric drones, fashioned on shoestrings, knocked a big old hole in the security bit. So we have a quid tied now to a Maginot Line quo. The gargantuan, old-school scale of the petrodollar arrangement suddenly looks likes something constructed in the 70s, a real clunky gas-guzzler.

Under the old superseded scale, MIC fingerprints could afford to be absent from the actual crime scene. The petrodollar was the MIC's financial underwriter, but from a chaste distance. The 80s Latin American debt crisis was a ruinous installment towards this military debt burden.

The oncoming era of the chaordic promises to usher in globalized warlordism (down-scaled Full Spectrum Dominance). No one has the time or the patience anymore for Neo-liberal protocols and the more polite forms of larceny. The world is groaning under $247T of debt. Who's got the energy (literally) for keeping up appearances?

So going forward, America is there for the oil. Period. Is everyone clear? Trump's literalness makes him a lousy ironist. This may make him perfectly suited for the new age. Elsewhere, Assad has acknowledged, perhaps reserving some irony for himself, Trump's refreshing candor on the matter. Maybe that's progress. Everyone's understanding one another.

At the same time, candor can serve as a hurried preamble to defeat, as b suggests. Candor born of strategic desperation, maybe?

https://imgur.com/gallery/vMQMEac

Posted by: FSD | Nov 16 2019 4:03 utc | 49

ben #28

He's trying to take down another empire sycophant, in the person of one J. Biden. That is not permitted.

He's not fighting the "deep state" but he's fighting one of their trusted soldiers, and that threatens "the system", so the circus in D.C. is his punishment.

Some punishment. A spectacle of clowns shooting themselves in the foot. All I can see is Bud Abbot and Lew Costello rehearsing a skit with a shotgun. Try that again Bud and get closer this time.

More than one of their trusted soldiers is tied to the rack on this attack from Ukraine. The Russians must be laughing their arse off at this 'revenge of the Ukies on the Yankees'. I'd call it Skripal pay back and no one saw Putin lift a finger.

William Gruff #16

WOW that is a stretch but I will wait and see. The Trumpster is a shithole actor but the audience your strategy sees is not too bright. Foxing the US army is one hell of a gamble but I will be the first to congratulate the Donald if he can extract that tooth. I agree with the logic William but the audacity is a dangerous poker hand to hold.

Anyway the Donald seems to be about to unleash his own version of armageddon on the permanent state and its many cockroaches. Fun times indeed.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Nov 16 2019 4:14 utc | 50

flankerbandit #40

Mid air collisions and other circus acts by the US air farce.


Thanks for that little gem. It reminded me of the dopey US Navy and their playing chicken with giant freighters in the busy sea lanes off Japan. They are invincible, they are legend, they are ridiculous.

Yankee stay home and mend the sox and till the soil and brush the horses but leave the world alone will ya!

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Nov 16 2019 4:31 utc | 51

William Gruff #37

We can assume that Trump lied about getting Americans out of Syria but really wanted to keep them there, but that he screwed it up such that America's footprint in Syria was dramatically reduced.

Not a peep out of Neanyahoo after the biggest FUBAR that totally destroyed Israel's 'firmly in place' yinon stage three proxies.

I don't buy that. I cannot see that such a move was deliberate. If it was then it totally destroys the logic and trope of USA going along with Israel in the Syria and Iraq war zone.

Maybe it was a screw up and no one anticipated the lightning response of the SAA and Russian forces. But I find that hard to believe as these moves are typically rehearsed, war gamed, strategised, with abundant scope for immediate countermeasures to be enacted.

If this was a Trump screw up then Netanyahoo will be about to go visit USA and address Congress yet again and wont seek to meet with Trump. If that doesn't happen then there is every likelihood that Trump will have a motorcade accident.

Posted by: u | Nov 16 2019 4:43 utc | 52

oops #52 was me

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Nov 16 2019 4:44 utc | 53

Jackrabbit @48: That could be SDF or "Sunnistan".

Series Of Blasts Target Mass Protest Gathering In Baghdad, Multiple Dead & Wounded

The bombing will most likely escalate the intensity of protests as Iraq stands of [sic] the brink of possible renewed sectarian civil war.

!!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Nov 16 2019 5:17 utc | 54

It seems pretty clear that the gig is up for the 'moderate headchoppers' that the Western Empire has hired to take over Syria. They have simply lost the war. So actually Trump's 'we will just take the oil' is the absolute perfect red herring to cover up that particular inconvenient truth. So that all makes sense.

The worry now is: what will the military/security complex come up with to replace the Syria project? They are not going to be spotted in the unemployment line clutching their pink slips, are they? No.

Nope. There must be some other business opportunities around here somewhere.

Posted by: blues | Nov 16 2019 6:22 utc | 55

Whilst I've never thought Trump was either stupid or a dupe, I find it encouraging that so many observers are rusted onto that view. It's amusing that a quip about Syria's oil from 'idiot' President Teflon has got Swamp creatures squabbling in public about the 'wisdom' of his strategy. If there's one thing smarter, and safer, that Trump naming & shaming Swamp creatures, it would be Trump provoking them into doing it themselves...

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Nov 16 2019 7:07 utc | 56

blues
Energy dominance will require participation of the military/security complex. Hence Trump's big spend up on the military.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 16 2019 7:31 utc | 57

"There must be some kind of way out of here,"
Said the joker to the thief
"There's too much confusion
I can't get no relief.
Businessmen, they drink my wine
Plowmen dig my earth
None of them along the line
Know what any of it is worth."

lyrics: some xtian/zionist/wherever there's a dollar hack
music: a genius

Whilst I spent most of orange dolt's tenure believing such a corrupt f+ck must have some really good earners going, I've recently rethought that. Any scrutiny of the stumblebum's business history reveals a sociopath dedicated to scamming dingbats for the purpose of separating them from their money and only having moderate success at such, hence n bankruptcies, primarily because his scams were pretty much par for the course efforts which worked on fools but never had the intelligence & sophistication to cop a really big earner. Therefore if he us up to that as prez, it just doesn't square with reality.

If orangey the klutz has been doing that stuff as prez, why hasn't he been 'Lenin Moreno'ed' by the deep state? ya'll know Lenin Moreno - current prez of Ecuador who served as VP under Rafael Correa diligently implementing Correra's policies until Correra hit his term limit and Moreno was the next cab off the rank & made prez. Unbeknownst to most Moreno the creep had been siphoning off funds and using them to invest in extensive landholdings in Belize via his INA vehicle.

Ecuadorians - and others have been puzzling for some time how it was Moreno turned from a greedy pig, but a leftist corrupt pig, into such a neolib arsehole. The truth is that despite the expulsion of the FBI & DEA by Correra, the amerikan intelligence agencies managed to assemble sufficient evidence of his corruption to blackmail Moreno the moment he became prez.

Moreno is truly screwed since one of the 1st moves the amerikan deep state demanded was that Ecuador let the FBI back in, meaning that they will have put together even more evidence of Moreno's corruptiion and it is highly likely that since Moreno's scams have become widely known in Ecaudor that whoever gets the prez gig next will be offered the opportunity to seek reparations and justice over Moreno to staisfy the citizens.

Currently, according to most who lurk at MoA anyway, orange dingbat is at war with that same deep state.

So the question is, given that trump has never had an original idea and all his scams have been highly derivative, how teh f+ck is it, that this deep state thingy hasn't brought the amerikan prez into line yet?

AFAIK under those circs it can only mean that either orange arsehole has been too smart to leave any traces, or he isn't a greedy corrupt motherf+cker.
Neither option is credible, which draws anyone with >2 braincells to conclude there is something else entirely currently going on

Posted by: A User | Nov 16 2019 7:51 utc | 58

The recognised term is bang for buck, but Trump wants buck for bang. Hence his opposition to endless expensive wars that rack up US debt. Many think Trump is some sort of peacenik because he dislikes endless expensive wars, but that leaves out Trump's increase in military spending.
A powerful military with all options on the table, short wars with perceptible loot carried off by the US at the end.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 16 2019 8:21 utc | 59

Best quote from this article by Syrian President Bashar Assad -

"We can very simply liken American policy today with Nazi policy: expansion, invasion, undermining the interests of other nations, trampling on international law, international conventions, human principles, and others – all for the sake of oil. What’s the difference between this policy and Nazi policy? Can anybody from the American regime give us an answer to this question? I don’t think so."

Spot on!

Posted by: deschutes | Nov 16 2019 8:29 utc | 60

Here President Bashar Assad lucidly summarizes what the U.S. government is, and how it works-

"President Assad: You are absolutely correct, not only because they are looting oil, but because America is structured as a political system of gangs. The American president does not represent a state – he is the company CEO, and behind this CEO there is a board of directors which represent the big companies in America – the real owners of the state – oil and arms companies, banks, and other lobbies. So, in reference to Syrian oil, this is the expected result of the American regime, which is led by companies acting for their own interests."

Assad is saying what, for example Chris Hedges has been saying for years now: a corporate putsch has taken place of USA. There is no democracy left in USA. Rather, it is a corporate 'gang' oligarchy– run by and for the billionaire gangs, oil, military and Wall St corporations control everything, choose who will be president, decide domestic and foreign policy. It is laughable to see Americans getting so excited about another presidential election, when it is guaranteed that ONLY a candidate to serves the corporate oligarchy will win. Everyday Americans are mere wage slaves, modern day serfs for the oligarch gangs that own and operate USA.

Posted by: deschutes | Nov 16 2019 8:37 utc | 61

assad has got it right. and now it looks like we might get clinton trump 2, if she has any way of inserting herself into the race (and she does, using the dnc and superdelegates and biden's decline).

Posted by: pretzelattack | Nov 16 2019 9:03 utc | 62

Nope. There must be some other business opportunities around here somewhere.

Posted by: blues | Nov 16 2019 6:22 utc | 55

Cuba. A thorn in the ass of the U.S. ever since Castro kicked them out.
I've noticed Cuba's been in the news lately; we'll see...

Posted by: Verne Arnold | Nov 16 2019 9:13 utc | 63

Trump's idea of "pulling out" will have all the lack of forethought, questionable morality and traumatic consequences of a late third term abortion.

Posted by: Et Tu Brute | Nov 16 2019 11:15 utc | 65

snake #64

Thank you but who makes these tear gas bullets? Are they USA or??

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Nov 16 2019 11:15 utc | 66

The US plan to create Kurdistan is still on the drawing board, it seemed crazy when Re Tillerson tried it,but just because the notion is impracticable does not mean they will not try again, first things first, the US have armed the Kurds now Trump aims to finance them through oil sales, crazy, yes, but that has not stopped the US in the past, this scheme will fail of course but the fall back position is it will deprive Syria of the oil and hinder reconstruction, how evil is that?
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Tuesday that Washington is attempting to split Syria and create a quasi-state on the Euphrates River's east bank as the US is opposing the return of Syria's northeast to the Syrian government. https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/201902191072554205-quasi-state-euphrates-syria/

Posted by: Harry law | Nov 16 2019 11:38 utc | 67


Yes, echoing james (17). We all here appreciate mightily your blogging here. It's the go-to for sifting through the deliberate white noise being beamed at us, not only on the ME and Syria, but now, Bolivia. I note none in the popmedia has given us an update on Guaido's current whereabouts. Is back at that mule-packing college they found him at?
Thanks again, b

Posted by: Paul H | Nov 16 2019 11:41 utc | 68

Lindsay Graham stated very succinctly in this Fox interview on 20 Oct 19 with Maria Bartiromo what it was all about.

"PROTECTING ISRAEL IS THE NUMBER ONE OBJECTIVE" (2.06)

https://video.foxnews.com/v/6096263037001/#sp=show-clips

Posted by: Guy THORNTON | Nov 16 2019 12:12 utc | 69

Trump gets "duped" into a position that yields the results that he initially wanted.

Who is really being duped here?

The US will have to leave Syria now. That's what Trump wanted in the first place. It took his con man skills to get to this point, but as far as moral conflicts between means and ends go this is hardly the worst we've seen lately.

Posted by: William Gruff | Nov 16 2019 12:23 utc | 70

Game changer will be when mid-long distance air defenses are installed in DeZ or Qamishili, today only short distance are installed, such as Pantsir's systems in Qamishili, there are rumours BukM2 systems are already there, these are mid range, but when long range S200 or even Russian owned and operated S300 are seen in Qamishili then it is game over, not a single illegal US soldier will remains in Eastern Syria without the free access to the air space there.

It is a fact that over 150 Russias are already in Qaishili airbase, some 8-10 attack choppers are stationed there, Mi35 and Mi8, we all know RuAF do not use an airbase without proper AA, so it is ok to assume some AA is already there, short rage but soon mid range, and if RuAF starts bring jets, then long range will be there as well.

Some distances to understand the impact of a long range AA in Qamishili airbase.
1) SE Hasaka's well preserved oil and gas fields are located in less than 100 kms away.
2) The famous Omar oil and gas field, not all operational though, is between 150-200 kms.

Once S200 or S300 are operational in Qamnishili airbase, it is will be the perfect excuse for the US military to get out, saying it is not safe to keep soldiers on the ground due to lack of safe air coverage. This "we keep the oil" strategy is clearly an interim step toward full retreat, I truly believe Trump has no intention to stay in Syria, too much liability, but he has to navigate in trouble waters to get out in a safe political way. Maybe this is the time for the stubborned Syrian kurds to re embrace the Syrian Gov.

Posted by: Canthama | Nov 16 2019 12:32 utc | 71

Canthama | Nov 16 2019 12:32 utc | 71

Thoughtful post, yours. Lets hope you're correct; and I think you are.

Posted by: V | Nov 16 2019 13:00 utc | 72

AFAIK under those circs it can only mean that either orange arsehole has been too smart to leave any traces, or he isn't a greedy corrupt motherf+cker.
Neither option is credible, which draws anyone with >2 braincells to conclude there is something else entirely currently going on

You raise a question I have pondered from time to time: why is he still up there?

I don't know the answer. I've read from supposed NYC insider types, that he was very good at not being in the room when things went down, which sort of coincides with his general demeanor, he ducks direct confrontation, but loves to mouth off.

That he is more devious than he looks is not unexpected in a con man.

And you have to allow for the decayed state of our deep state, incompetence is not Trump's monopoly. Compared to most of the Congress for example he is a clear winner. And they are largely a reflection of our plutocrats. A sorry lot.

But allowing all that, I still agree, it needs explaining that he is still up there. And we all know the public political narrative in the USA is drivel, too, kayfabe, kabuki.

Monkey politics among the ruling gangs, opaque, but not necessarily a big conspiracy, is my sort of default position, but I'm open to other ideas. I'm assuming he has unseen support in other words, but not something new. Just a different gang so to speak. And the public demeanor is a mask for that.

It is interesting because the public dispute is clarifying, we have two conflicting kayfabe political narratives now, and competing media projecting them. It's like a religious argument. Very divisive, going forward.

Posted by: Bemildred | Nov 16 2019 13:19 utc | 73

Cathama [thank you for your input at Syria perspective] comments above about a game changer in Syria, however Lebanon can achieve those changes also... Earlier this year [2019] Iran's Zarif himself announced, upon arriving in Beirut, that his country was "willing to meet Lebanon's military and economic needs."
Also Russia yesterday moved to expand its growing military influence in the Middle East when it announced it is giving Lebanon 10 fighter jets, in the most significant upgrade of Lebanon's military since the civil war ended almost two decades ago.
Russia's defence ministry said it was giving the secondhand MiG-29s to Beirut free of charge. The gift was part of a defence cooperation deal that would see Moscow train Lebanese military personnel.
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2008/dec/18/russia-lebanon-jets-arms-supply
Its early days yet since this Iranian AA system has only recently been deployed in Iran, but it is to be hoped that Iran will supply the Bavar 373 Anti aircraft system and others to Hezbollah, the Bavar 373 is a system based on the Russian S300 and is said to be far superior to it, now that would be a real game changer.

Posted by: Harry law | Nov 16 2019 13:35 utc | 74

Canthama...

About Russian air defenses in northern Syria...yes they will be put in place, as already there are Pantsirs there...

The longer range systems may be placed there too, but this is likely to happen only if the situation stabilizes...

One thing That is a problem is that the US is still holding on to the Rmeilan air base in the northeast tip of Syria...this was previously the Abu Hajar Airport that was a fairly small field of about 700 meters length, but the US took over and reportedly extended it to 2,500 meters and used it for transport aircraft like the C130...

Now this area is located within the Russian-Turkish agreement and the SAA controls that territory, as well as the road border crossing into Iraq nearby...

This crossing is currently the ONLY way into and out of northeast Syria by road for the US and both Iraq and Syria are giving permission so far on a case by case basis...

Already some sober military thinkers have noted the logistics problem involved in keeping US troops there...

I don't see that Russia is going to deploy its longer range systems or even if they do, that they are going to threaten US aircraft in Syrian airspace...nobody wants that kind of escalation...

I have said from the beginning that keeping US troops in that bottled up area is not going to be workable...

This from a report a couple of weeks back in the WaPo

One U.S. official said that for now, the military has continued to run ground resupply convoys into Syria from Iraq through the Fishkhabour crossing this week, deconflicting with Russian forces as necessary.

Access to any of the crossings also requires permission from the government of Iraq, which last week said that U.S. forces being evacuated there from Syria could only remain for four weeks.

Even if the border crossings could be negotiated with Russia, Syria, Iraq and the militias — depending on who is in charge at a given time and place — road access to the scattered and relatively small U.S. outposts around the main Omar oil field remains insecure and difficult along desert tracks and dirt roads, according to several people with knowledge of the area.

While larger U.S. installations — many now abandoned — had been clustered in Kurdish areas closer to the Turkish border, the American presence in the more sparsely populated areas to the south has been light, said Nicholas A. Heras, a scholar who tracks Syria at the Center for a New American Security.

Maintaining and protecting troops in isolated areas of Deir al-Zour will be a challenge, he said.

“The United States is dependent on the SDF, and the devil will be in the details” of any arrangement, Heras said.

If the United States cannot maintain a land route into Syria, it may have to expand a small airfield in the Deir al-Zour region or a base at Rmeilan, just south of the Turkish expansion area in northeast Syria.

The base was the second-largest U.S. facility after the border town of Kobane, now occupied by Russian and other forces, and the only one capable of receiving large cargo aircraft, Heras said.

That large base near Kobane is the Sarrin base, which the Russians entered yesterday, after the last US troops left...

Posted by: flankerbandit | Nov 16 2019 13:46 utc | 75

i've always thought trump and the dnc types, it's a fight among swamp creatures. trump isn't playing 11 dimensional chess any more than obama was. as far as his base, i think it's the neocons and a good portion of the military, against the intel community, with politicians and conors aligned along both sides, many playing both ends against the middle. just another squabble over money and power, but both have an interest in maintaining the swamp ecology, so to speak.

Posted by: pretzelattack | Nov 16 2019 13:47 utc | 76

Stop whitewashing Trump. He has probably make a deal in Syria with other mafiosi dealers, a deal which, as any other deals he has been involved into, will be far from beneffiting any US citizizen except himself...

Trump and Macri: between Cosa Nostra and the P2 Lodge

I

Detective Phillip Marlowe: “Your father is worth 100 million dollars, Mrs. Loring. I would not know how he won them, but I know perfectly well that he would not have achieved them without an organization that goes very far ... And you have to do business with curious people. Perhaps one does not meet with them or shake their hands, but they are there, at the limit, and business is done with them… ”

Mrs. Loring's father (to Marlowe): “… I think you are a very sincere person. But don't strive to be a hero, my young friend. You don't get any percent. ”

The targeted parliaments appear in Raymond Chandler's novel The Long Goodbye (chapters 22/32), a work that could be more pedagogical than 50,000 analyzes of wild capitalism. But if a teacher of black genre novel like Chandler tried to imagine characters like Donald Trump or Mauricio Macri, he would find that fiction and reality are synonymous.

Donald Trump's empire grew through large contributions to political campaigns and doing construction business and mafia-run unions. No presidential candidate has had the same level of documented depth of business with entities controlled by gangsters, The Washington Post said.

In 1973, the Macri Society (Socma) had seven companies. Ten years later, thanks to the military civic dictatorship (1976-83), it had 46 companies. In 1982, the Central Bank, headed by Domingo Cavallo, nationalized the private debt of companies that collaborated with the dictatorship (Socma, Grupo Clarín, La Nación newspaper, Papel Prensa, and others) for an amount of 40 billion dollars.

Simultaneously, the Trump Organization erected colossal buildings in Manhattan, recovered gloomy neighborhoods in New York that are worth $ 10,000 a square meter today, and far exceeded the expectations of old Fred, his father. But Mauricio never got his recognition. Until one day, Franco made him president of Boca Juniors and then, seeing that it was good for nothing, he suggested that he get into politics.

In almost every major Manhattan construction project, Trump received the support of the mafia. This included the Trump Tower, a 58-story skyscraper on Fifth Avenue, built with reinforced concrete. Similarly, to enter the casino business, Donald did business with the Atlantic City mafia. An FBI memo confirmed that Trump was aware of the involvement of the mafia in Atlantic City.

Among the companies controlled by gangsters who had business with Trump are S&A Concrete, which provided materials for the Trump Plaza on the East Side of Manhattan. The owners of S&A were Anthony Fat Tony Salerno, head of the Genovese family, and Paul Castellano, head of the Gambino family. Salerno ended up in prison accused of ganging. His lawyer Roy Cohn was also a friend and occasional lawyer for Trump, who has not been charged with any illegality. And Macri was prosecuted for smuggling and acquitted by a Court that rejected the case.

Final observation by Detective Marlowe: “Let the lawyers do the dirty work. It is they who write laws for other lawyers to analyze in front of other lawyers called judges, so that other judges can say in turn that the first ones were not right and the supreme court will rule that the second group was wrong ... How much do you think would the big fish of the mafia last if the lawyers did not teach them how to act? ”(op. cit. chapter 43).

Emerging in societies that claim to be civilized and located at the opposite poles of the Hegelian master / slave dialectic, Trump and Macri won tens of millions of votes in free and democratic elections without ever having been social leaders, community leaders, officials, legislators, academics, religious preachers, thinkers or military.

II

In 1979, Donald Trump had an important partner in the real estate business: the Polish Abraham Hirschfeld, who was called Mr. Garage because he had acquired many tax and vacant lots in New York to turn them into parking lots.

Both owned the most expensive property in the city, located in Lincoln West (between 59th and 72nd streets), Upper Manhattan neighborhood: 23 hectares of an old railroad maneuver yard, on the banks of the Hudson (Penn Sation), where Trump dreamed of erecting a 150-story building.

However, the protests of neighbors, urban planners and environmentalists, and the demanding requirements of the mayor's office for the requalification of the place, hindered the pharaonic project of the Trump Organization, and the resulting bank credits.

Simultaneously, in another place in the big apple, Franco Macri and his son Mauricio (then 22 years old) closed a business with Waste Management Inc to form a garbage and solid waste collector, and thus modernize Manliba (Keep Buenos Aires Clean) , a company privatized by the military dictatorship and delivered to the Macri Group.

The Macri were introduced by Giorgio Nocella in the world of Italo-New York business. Pioneer of the paradises of the European jet set in the Mediterranean, Nocella was a friend of the FIAT boss Giovanni Agnelli and a militant of the sinister Masonic lodge P2. Franco and Giorgio cultivated friendship, sharing birthdays, businesses and offshore companies, such as those recently released by Panama papers and Bahama leaks.

In turn, Franco Macri's brother, Antonio, bought a mansion in Sardinia from Nocella, which one day and another also visited the boys of the Cosa Nostra, Sofia Loren, Silvio Berlusconi, politicians, cardinals and friends of childhood of President Mauricio Macri, as the current all-terrain contractor Nicolás Caputo, and José Torello, tsar of Argentine casinos.

Nocella opened the doors of New York Democratic Mayor Edward Koch to Franco. And Koch put him in touch with Trump: “I just met an Argentine with a lot of wool and pretensions, you know…” Franco (50 years old) called the young golden mane tiger (34), who told the lamb: " I have some little land that might interest you. " Until today, Trump cannot believe that Macri has bought him (in cash!) His share of Lincoln West (65 percent), and for twice its value: $ 150 million.

On a second trip, to impress, Macri joined his team to José Martínez de Hoz, former Minister of Economy of dictator Videla, well-known of Wall Street and Nelson Rockefeller. And Juan Carlos Basile, former Secretary of Housing for former President Isabel Martínez de Perón, linked to the P2 and the New York Mafia construction unions.

The team had to arm the financial engineering to obtain a loan from the Chase Manhattan Bank. Task that, unusual, was in the hands of Carlos Varsasky, famous Argentine mathematician. Finally, the mayor of Koch approved the project. Only to grant the credit, Chase demanded that a recognized entrepreneur be added. Who would it be? You guessed: Trump!

Five years later, after disbursing tens of millions in public works and arduous bureaucratic procedures (requirements to authorize construction in Lincoln West), and dealing with the gangster Cement Club (which arranged contracts and controlled the cement workers' unions), Franco threw in the towel. And he left Mauricio on his behalf.

Missing from the stage the big lamb, the tiger threw himself on the little lamb: I buy you the little land that I sold to your dad, and tell him that I thank him very much for his efforts to legalize everything.
Trump stayed with Lincoln West again, and Mauricio, lost between nightclubs and francachelas (his true vocation), called Buenos Aires: "Surprise, Dad! Donald bought us Lincoln West for 100 million!"

Franco had a heart attack, but he survived (1985). And the tiger partnered with investors from Taiwan and Beijing to build a real estate complex worth 3 billion on the Marras estate. Now this is the link where Mauricio Macri tells his version of things.

Incidentally, 32 managers of Waste Management Inc ended up imprisoned for their links with Cosa Nostra, the Genovese family in particular. And in Italy, Antonio Macri was investigated for triangulation and arms sales for the Falklands War (1982) when he was part of an organization that raised solidarity funds for Argentina.

Meanwhile, at the end of the 1990s, Abraham Hirschfeld went to prison for hiring a hitman to kill a partner. And from there he also ordered the judge who was following his cause to be killed. No problem: two years in the boat and that's it. However, honor to whom honor deserves: Hirschfeld was the first to propose Donald Trump as a candidate for the presidency of the great northern country.

Posted by: Sasha | Nov 16 2019 14:37 utc | 77

I was not aware that the US actually fought against ISIS. The US presence in the region merely directs proxy forces and stirs up unrest.

Posted by: Symen Danziger | Nov 16 2019 14:39 utc | 78

@75

Nicely said Flanker, but I don't think you are really conflicting with Canthama (whose reports on Syrian Perspective are generally optimistic, but they have been roughly shown to be correct).

I suspect the US presence in SE Syria is temporary, there until the next US election. For domestic US reasons. If Trump is re-elected, I suspect we will see an unleashed Trump. It's second-term US presidents (who can't be elected again) that really show themselves. since they no longer have anything to lose (unless you are trying to create a political dynasty... like um... Roosevelts, Kennedy's, Bush's, Clinton's...)

Oh, OK, might have to take that back. We'll have to wait and see.

Posted by: Ant. | Nov 16 2019 14:41 utc | 79

@77

Excellent investigation Sasha!

I am eagerly awaiting an equivalent analysis of the Clinton's political history and finances.

Posted by: Ant. | Nov 16 2019 14:51 utc | 80

The neo-conservatives who have duped President Trump into the "steal the oil" scheme in Syria are already distancing themselves from the plan.

You mean Trump was duped yet AGAIN? So how many times is that so far??? I should have kept count! So it isn't that Trump, the rabid Zionist Iranophobe, who filled his cabinet with Iran haters, can't stand the thought of Iran getting to the oil or establishing an Iran-Iraq-Syria trade corridor through Eastern Syria?

You seem to always overlook that Trump is a Zionist first. Passing him off as a dupe every time is so much easier to splain into the Trump/Putin bromance narrative. Is he Putin's dupe too? Because if someone's a dupe, anyone with a stronger will can dupe them...no?

I should have kept a tally of how many times you used that excuse to splain away Trump's indefensible behaviour.

How bout next time you use Neocons put something in Trump's diet coke?

Or, how bout the truth? Trump is a Zio CON.

Posted by: Circe | Nov 16 2019 14:51 utc | 81

@81

I think the first thing you have to understand about Trump is that he is a nationalist. America First. He has always said that.

His weakness is that his has no real understanding of diplomacy. He's a business man, and he treats foreign relations on a business first relationship. After all, that is the strength of the US... it's economic, not military. Boo, sanctions!

America's primacy in the economic world is fading, and that's self-inflicted. Cheaper labour rates and 'free-trade agreements' simply meant major companies off-shored their factories. Literally abandoning the societies that nurtured them in the quest for greater and greater stock-holder (and board members) profits.

I have never thought these international free-trade agreements were a great idea. I think they were oligarch-driven wet dreams that became reality via gob-smackingly corrupt politicians.

Posted by: Ant. | Nov 16 2019 15:13 utc | 82

the ONION (!!!): Paraguay Panics After Discovering Rich Deposit Of Natural Resources

TORO PAMPA, PARAGUAY—Cursing their luck after scientists confirmed their nation’s worst fears had been realized, officials in Paraguay were reportedly panicking Wednesday after discovering a rich deposit of natural resources. “Goddammit, this is tens of billions of dollars’ worth of rhodium, if not more—we’re sitting right on an absolute disaster for Paraguay if word ever gets out that this is here,” said visibly nervous President Mario Abdo Benîtez, warning the scientists who had stumbled upon the discovery while working on another project that if they cared about the future of the Paraguayan people, they should do whatever they could to cover up the existence of rare mineral reserves in the country. “Hopefully, this incredibly valuable natural resource is confined to just this area and we don’t have any more of it. Oh God, imagine if the United States and other global investors find out. You saw what just happened to Bolivia—if they’d had the good sense not to let anyone find out they had lithium, they wouldn’t be in the mess they’re in now. We’ve got to close down the area completely and never speak of this again, otherwise we’re screwed.” At press time, Paraguayan officials were considering blowing up the entire area containing the rhodium deposits with C4 in an effort to ensure their nation’s survival.

Posted by: Mao | Nov 16 2019 15:18 utc | 83

@83

lol. I am now appropriately terrified that the US might find out I have some potential shale oil under my first-floor apartment.

Posted by: Ant. | Nov 16 2019 15:23 utc | 84

The amount of Syrian oil, which belongs by contract to the Russians, as a percentage of worldwide production - were the fields to be even up and running - is so minuscule, it's laughable.

This is the case study of American Imperialism: dumb, dumber and dumbest.

We really are a stupid lot.

Posted by: Wes Baker | Nov 16 2019 15:27 utc | 85


The Brennan Dossier - another superb reporting from one of the best current investigative journalists Aaron Mate. Most readers of this website may well be familiar with most of the info but still worth reading this excellent piece.

The Brennan Dossier: All About a Prime Mover of Russiagate | RealClearInvestigations
https://www.realclearinvestigations.com/articles/2019/11/15/the_brennan_dossier_all_about_a_prime_mover_of_russiagate_121098.html

Posted by: Nathan Mulcahy | Nov 16 2019 15:32 utc | 86

@80 Ant.

Why? Trump is President. He's the one in power that should be thoroughly scrutinized. Hillary's a thing of the past. Who cares any more? Quit using that excuse for deflection to cover Trump's ass!

Now, to continue with my previous post: So with Neocons, Trump's always a dupe, but with Putin, not so much...hmmm? Putin's losing his touch! 🤣

I agree with Sasha. Trump was groomed by cons to be the most ambitious CON of all straight into the Presidency!

But-but b wants us to believe he's just a dupe each and every time.

Posted by: Circe | Nov 16 2019 15:35 utc | 87

Canthama @71:

Once S200 or S300 are operational in Qamnishili airbase, it is will be the perfect excuse for the US military to get out, ... This "we keep the oil" strategy is clearly an interim step toward full retreat

Russia will never shoot down a US plane and risk starting WWIII so this theory relies upon the unreliable analytical technique of 'hopium' in two parts: 1) that Trump is more inclined to leave Syria than "take the oil" and 2) that Trump is the guy that's really in charge. Each of these is rather dubious, as commenters at MOA have made abundantly clear.

!!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Nov 16 2019 15:53 utc | 88

@85

Minuscule in a global sense, especially since production collapsed when the oil-fields were taken over by jihadists. And who flogged off what was still produced to certain mendacious operators. Majorly the Barziani mob and to a certain government figure in Turkey, who was married to the Erdogan family... to my understanding. That all fell apart when the Russian Federation got involved and started mercilessly bombing all the jihadist oil-trucking convoys. Which was a bit harsh, because I think most of the truckers were just Arabs that suddenly found themselves 'behind enemy lines' and still needed a job to feed their families. Such is geo-politics.

That's what Russians do, they do the practical thing. Not necessarily nice, but it cut much of the guts out of jihadists external finances.

Still, that oil production is far from minuscule to the Damascus government, and that is what is important. It is their sovereign wealth that is still being illegally stolen by an invasive force, that has no just right to be there.

Posted by: Ant. | Nov 16 2019 15:56 utc | 89

@deschutes 61

AT the outset of the current Uke crisis (ca spring 2014) I was listening to talks by a Russian analyst---now I cannot recall his name, but he is quite well known; an academic, not a "pundit"---and he was discussing what was going on in Ukraine and the US interests in exactly the same terms. Namely, *clans.* He gave his talk in a university setting, I think in the US.

He explained which US clans were lined up with which Uke clans.
Sorry I cannot recall his name but someone here may.
I believe he was linked by a commenter at The Saker blog.

Posted by: Really?? | Nov 16 2019 16:02 utc | 90

@87

And Joe Biden was a former Vice-President of the United States. Whose son travelled with him of Air Force Two to China, and whose company (along with his best mate Devon Archer) promptly got a 1.5 billion loan from a subsidiary of the PBOC. To my understanding that loan has now grown up to 2.3 billion.

And Joe Biden allegedly intimidated the Ukrainian government into dropping the corruption case against Burisma (where his son was a board member, for no sensible reason, and got paid millions for no effort), and sacking Shokin (the investigative superior), otherwise the Ukrainian government wouldn't get a @US1billion dollar 'loan'.

Ok, let's investigate Trump. But in the same breath, why wouldn't you want to investigate Biden too? Shouldn't you Yanks be doing both?

Isn't justice meant to be blind?

Posted by: Ant. | Nov 16 2019 16:10 utc | 91

@88

Russia has already shot down a US plane. Heard of Gary Powers?

Posted by: Ant. | Nov 16 2019 16:46 utc | 92

"Russia will never shoot down a US plane and risk starting WWIII"
Posted by: Jackrabbit | Nov 16 2019 15:53 utc | 88

Assad just told Russian media that it will be the Syrians that resist the occupation..
the full transcript is available @ SANA. sy/en

Posted by: Per/Norway | Nov 16 2019 16:50 utc | 93

JackRabbit there is a artcle @ the Saker to about this topic, i just found "Donald Trump’s Syrian crossroads: Americans will be driven out by the “dehkan farmers»" rn..

Posted by: Per/Norway | Nov 16 2019 16:54 utc | 94

"...2) It seems reasonable to surmise that USA intends to transfer the oil fields to a local
entity of their choosing at some point in the future. That could be SDF or "Sunnistan".
Any such an entity would have to be immediately recognized by USA and many other countries
so that it could be provided with advanced weaponry. Once a legal basis has been established,
a major oil company could be engaged to increase production.!!" Jackrabbit@48

And how would this 'state'communicate with the world? How would it import food and export oil?
In pick up trucks?
Face facts JR, the US has painted itself into a corner. The state that you believe to be all
powerful and intimidating-the one that Russia is so afraid of that it dare not use its air defences
for fear of, accidentally, harming a USAF 'plane is actually incompetent and, except in its masterful
use of regime change blackmail+terrorism tactics, becoming impotent.
That is one reason why it is focusing its attention back on Latin America, which is the next place
where it is going to get its arse kicked. Again.

Posted by: bevin | Nov 16 2019 17:22 utc | 95

I've said this time and again. This gambit will not succeed. These troops will also be forced out of Syria in due time. Might be 12 to 18 months from now but Syria will be fully reconstituted.

Posted by: Jonathan Gillispie | Nov 16 2019 17:29 utc | 96

There will be plenty of small US companies like Genie Energy that will be happy to work the Syrian oilfields.
And the patch of Syria that US holds, rather than being isolated, it is an extension of US in Iraq.
It will only be when US are booted out of Iraq that their Syrian patch becomes isolated and I don't see
the US being booted out of Iraq for the foreseeable future.
As for the locals - Deir Ezzor Arabs in the ISIS SDF for the Deir Ezzor fields and PKK SDF for the
Hasakah oil fields.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 16 2019 17:35 utc | 97

"Once a legal basis has been established..."

Unlikely at best. An invented legality, at most, reminding me of Colin Powell's angry attempts to intimidate the UN Security Council into justifying an illegal war on Iraq, while being coached by George Tenet. An attempt which Mr. Powell now has the grace to admit was the most embarrassing moment in his otherwise proper, but misdirected life.

So he quit being Secretary of State. That was decent, I think he realized he was played. But all that happened was that Condaleezza Rice took over, and the less said about that the better.

Posted by: Ant. | Nov 16 2019 17:37 utc | 98

Hold on, so the Acting SECY of Defense wasn't successful in duping Trump into doing the right thing to NOT pardon those 3 U.S. military war criminals. Trumpasshat went ahead and pardoned them anyway. But Neocons duped Trump into sending a tank battalion to take over Syria's oil fields? That's some selective duping! Or it's b.s.

The truth is that Zionist Trump could care less about doing the right thing. Trump cares only about Trump, adulation (ego) and power (fascist Zio power) and every decision is based solely on these.

Posted by: Circe | Nov 16 2019 17:44 utc | 99

@99

Wrong. All American administrations and Presidents have attempted to hide war crimes, and forgive all perpetrators.

The No Gun Rai massacre in Korea. The My Lai atrocity in Vietnam. The tools that blew away Reuters-affiliated reporters in Baghdad because they vaguely suspected their cameras sort of looked like RPG's. USS Vincennes (the Robocruiser) blowing away Iranian Flight 655 without bothering to check the standard passenger aircraft transponder.

Posted by: Ant. | Nov 16 2019 17:57 utc | 100

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