Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
January 18, 2021

New Leaks Show How British Spies Infiltrate And Undermine Lebanon's Security Services

A few month ago we reported on documents which revealed secret British 'Strategic Communication' programs in support of the Jihadis who fight against the Syrian people and their government.

In December documents of a different secret program revealed similar British efforts in Lebanon. These were designed to influence certain 'liberal' youth groups in preparation for a 'color revolution' that would overthrow the Lebanese government.

A new set of documents, just recently published, shows British efforts to influence and infiltrate the security forces of Lebanon. These programs are coordinated with Canadian and U.S. efforts to gain influence in the country and to use it on behalf of Israeli interests.

Like usual these programs are sold as white man's burden efforts to 'help' the indigenous people and their governments. But they are in fact undermining the sovereignty of the country and hinder the self determination of its people.

As Professor As`ad AbuKhalil remarked on the previously released batch:

To be sure, the documents seem to be unclassified material related to the operation of the British embassy in Beirut. But it can be easily ascertained that the embassy (at least from these documents, which the British ambassador in Beirut refused to comment on when asked by Lebanese media) was engaged in activities that would close the Lebanese embassy in London if it were engaged in similar activities.

It’s clear Western powers allow their embassies to do things they would never allow developing countries to do from their embassies in the West. After the humiliating defeat of Israel in Lebanon in 2006, there has been a feverish escalation of the propaganda war in Lebanon against all those who declare resistance against Israel.
These documents help make it clear how the West hasn’t moved on from its colonial legacy. The natives are still regarded as mobs to be controlled and manipulated.

To manipulate and gain control of the 'mobs' it is helpful to manipulate and control the local security services - police, military and border control. The UK set out to do that when it created its 'Lebanon Conflict, Stability and Security Fund' (CSSF).

In April 2019 the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) sent invitations to a private supplier event to a few selected private companies. These were invited to bid on two projects:

  • Security Programme –Lebanese Armed Forces Project
  • Security Programme –Policing Project

The companies were asked to submit Expression of Interests for certain projects under the CSSF. They were send a summary of requirements that describe the aims of the programs and desired qualities needed to achieve these.

The above projects were build on assessments created during previous FCO projects. In 2018 one of such projects was the 'CSSF Lebanon: CT Border Needs Assessment'. Its objective was:

To increase UK understanding of the level of resilience at the Lebanese border to the transit of persons of CT interest. This includes FTFs, returnees and the terrorist displacement from Syria into Lebanon. The movement of goods, such as weapons, and finance these will not be the primary focus though the findings may have impact on these areas.

Note how this objective is in the interest of the UK, not necessarily Lebanon's. While it is framed as counter terrorism project its real aim is more likely to spy on and disrupt the movement of Hizbullah forces between Syria and Lebanon and on weapon supplies from Iran to Lebanon's Hizbullah - weapons which are needed to deter Israel from waging another war on Lebanon.


The assessment project required collaboration from Lebanese security services:


Building on assessment projects like the above larger programs to penetrate the security forces were initiated. The objectives of the CSSF Lebanon: Lebanese Armed Forces –National Security Assistance Programme are:

the provision of ‘Train & Mentor’ type interventions in support of Border Security and Internal Security, delivered at a significant scale, in Lebanon.

The 'significant scale' is worrisome. The budget for the above project was £20 million starting in May 2019 and running until April 2022.

The statement of requirements for the CSSF LEBANON: BRITISH POLICING SUPPORT PROGRAMME (BPSP) defines the 'output and deliveries' of the program as greater control by the Internal Security Forces over the population and communities of the country.


The British government promised £15 million for the project starting in August 2019 and ending in March 2022.

To bid on the FCO project contracts companies have to submit a number of files detailing their experience in such programs and countries. These files, included in the current leak, describe their experience in previous projects and thereby reveal how much previous FCO projects have already undermined foreign institutions.

One of the companies that were bidding for the FCO contracts on Lebanese policing is Siren Associates. The company previously cooperated with MI6 cutout ARC described in previous leaks. The wife of the suicided founder of the White Helmets jihadi propaganda show, Sarah Le Mesurier, has previously worked for both companies.

Siren Associates is also deeply involved in policing Jordan:

In Jordan, our partner organization, the Jordanian Public Security Directorate (PSD), presented an approach to community policing which was partial and focused mainly on public relations, whereas effective community policing is about establishing an organisation-wide philosophy and practice. We worked closely with the PSD to develop a pilot community policing programme in refugee camps and then host communities which resulted in increased community trust and community safety. As a result of this long-term, collaborative engagement, the holistic model of community policing is now being extended by PSD throughout the organisation. When dealing with differences in approach in any future project, Siren will maintain this client-centered, listening approach.

The company has previously been on 'scoping missions', i.e. it spied, for the British embassy:

In March 2016, the British Embassy Amman asked Siren to respond to the Ruqban crisis on the Syria-Jordan border, in which over 70,000 Syrian refugees were stranded in significant humanitarian distress. Siren deployed a fully equipped team of four staff to conduct a scoping mission, presenting an options paper within two weeks, which led to further UK support for the Syrian populations on arrival in Azraq refugee camp.

In February 2018, the British Embassy Beirut asked Siren to conduct a rapid assessment of the security situation in Arsal, a town on Lebanon’s border with Syria only recently liberated from Daesh. Siren mobilized a team of five regional experts with relevant skills, liaised with the Internal Security Forces(ISF), gained security permissions, travelled to Arsal with the regional police commander, conducted the scoping exercise and drafted the report. The report, described by the Embassy as ‘very interesting and extensive,’ was delivered within ten days.

The company has operated in Lebanon since 2008. It is already deeply embedded in Lebanon's security forces and coordinates this with other Five-Eyes-countries:

The objective of Siren’s justice and security institutions relationship management strategy is to maintain buy-in to activities that cross-cut the security and justice sector and capitalize on any potential synergies between ongoing and forthcoming projects in the security sector. Key actors will be addressed as follows:

Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF): Current Siren projects in Tripoli have allowed us to foster linkages with Army command in Tripoli, with whom MARCH has active community engagement activities. Siren will work closely with the CSSF LAF programme supplier to align programming and benefit from community engagement.

Municipal Police (MP): Siren will capitalize on complementarities identified in meetings with Canadian Embassy representatives between this programme and the Canadian-funded UNDP programme in order to enhance MoIM’s comprehensive response to safety and security needs. This will include consulting Tripoli Municipal Police when designing community engagement activities.

Ministry of Justice: Siren has proven capability to work cross-ministerially: Siren is currently implementing a project that works across the MoIM and Ministry of Justice (MoJ) to pilot an improved registration process for stateless persons and is working directly with the Cases Commission. The Ministry is supportive of initiatives that improve judicial processes; Siren will build on this relationship in the forthcoming programme.

SSR Implementers: Siren has begun coordinating with the US Implementation Team regarding their major ISF automation project to ensure that any systems deployed are interoperable with systems developed in the Police of Beirut and that any technological transitions are managed effectively in order to maintain ISF operational capabilities. Siren has and will remain an active participant in relevant donor coordination functions, including the Canadian organized CT Working Group on Prisons. Siren is currently implementing a project on behalf of DCAF in the ISF Public Relations Department and is in discussions with DCAF regarding further support to the Anti-Torture Committee; these synergies can be leveraged with proposed activities within this programme.

Siren Associates claims to have a 'buy-in' from most leaders of Lebanon's security forces. How these 'buy-ins' happened, through bribes or other convincing arguments, is not explained. It created a detailed graphic listing and categorizing the leaders of all Lebanese security forces. None of the security leaders is listed as 'Resistant' to Siren Associate's doings.


Another company that submitted its credentials to bid for the British program to undermine Lebanese security forces is the British Torchlight Group. It has been working in Lebanon sine 2015. It has hired the former Brigadier General of the Lebanese army Bassam Boutros and others as 'senior strategic advisor' to peddle its influence. The former generals are budgeted with more than £100,000 each for 120 days work on the project. They are used to open the doors to other high level contacts:

Working across the security agencies and with civilian host government stakeholders:
Lebanon is a relatively top-down environment, and one where seniority matters. Our team members have access to and good relationships with the current DGs of the ISF and GS, as well as senior officials in the LAF. We will continue the existing relationship with General Othman through our Strategic Police Advisor, while at the same time cultivating close relationships with the second tier of leaders and with commanders at regional and local levels.
Our international team is supported by well-regarded retired senior ISF officer, Gen (rtd) Joseph Douaihy, who as a former leader in the Territorial Gendarmerie has a close understanding of ISF relations outside Beirut. To help us foster coordination with other agencies, LAF Gen (rtd) Bassam Boutrous and GS Gen (rtd) Dany Faresbring the team extensive experience of inter agency coordination on border management and other issues, and will help us navigate the bureaucracy and political landscape of the SSAs as well as enabling access to leadership cadres in the agencies and related ministries. All our meetings with senior officers are recorded in Key Leader Engagement (KLE) reports and shared with the Authority to ensure coherence of message between operational and policy levels.

Reread the last sentence and guess who 'the Authority' is to which the reports of the 'Key Leader Engagement' meetings are handed.

The described projects show how deep British MI6 cutouts have already infiltrated Lebanon's security services. They bribed or otherwise convinced the Lebanese security leadership to allow that their infiltration projects can proceed even deeper deeper into its services. All this while working for and reporting to a foreign 'Authority' which  certainly does not have Lebanon's best interests in mind.

Posted by b on January 18, 2021 at 20:18 UTC | Permalink


thanks b.... i guess a little bit of money goes a long way and bribery has always been a successful tool to gain information or control....

why is it that the uk, usa and canada are such consistent stooges for israel??? i think this has to do with money too, if i am not mistaken.. it can't be about sanity...

Posted by: james | Jan 18 2021 20:31 utc | 1

One wonders how many Lebanese 'senior strategic advisor' take the money then feed the 'foreign authorities' useless information. It's the Middle East after all.

Posted by: dh | Jan 18 2021 20:44 utc | 2

They're playing the long game. Similar effort in 2006:

UN "peace" envoy Rød-Larsen to US ambassador Feltman: "an Israeli invasion might be positive."

Rød-Larsen: "much can be achieved if Israel invades southern Lebanon."

Norwegians Geir Pederson and Rød-Larsen secretly collude with Washington:

>Geir Pederson excused himself early to return to the other part of the UN delegation (...) so as to not arouse suspicion about Larsen-U.S. collusion.

Posted by: ulfalf | Jan 18 2021 20:48 utc | 3

How these Lebanese officials can backstab their own people is beyond my comprehension. Looks like the West can find them for a dime a dozen.

Posted by: Jose Garcia | Jan 18 2021 21:07 utc | 4

"While it is framed as counter terrorism project its real aim is more likely to spy on and disrupt the movement of Hizbullah forces between Syria and Lebanon and on weapon supplies from Iran to Lebanon's Hizbullah - weapons which are needed to deter Israel from waging another war on Lebanon."

Ah yes, the dreaded 'Shia Crescent': Iran-Iraq-Syria-Lebanon.

Breaking the 'Shia Crescent' is the whole post-Iraq-war game in the region, including all that 'ISIS' nonsense and the nearly succeeded destruction of Syria. Oh well...

Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | Jan 18 2021 21:13 utc | 5

I dont suppose British policy is much different from that of the US, or France, for that matter. Macron wants to solve Lebanon, in what way is not clear.

Lebanon is fucked, for the moment. Its a game of conflicting personal interests, where the survival of the country plays no role.

The British interest, like that of the US and Israel, is to destabilise Hizbullah. Hizbullah's missiles are an existential threat to Israel. Therefore any effort should be made to destabilise the country. Unfortunately Hizbullah is not likely to be destabilised by such an effort. They have an agrarian base, little affected by the storms in Beirut, and the missiles are underground.

The people who will suffer are the Beirutis.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jan 18 2021 21:15 utc | 6

And the Brits are doing this why specifically?

Posted by: Jay | Jan 18 2021 21:23 utc | 7

Pretty good man.
Pretty good.
Thanks B.

Posted by: Josh | Jan 18 2021 21:27 utc | 8

The Lebanese are departing, if they can, having given up hope. The Lebanese doctor I saw last month in Paris was like that. My former student, an architect, is looking for posts abroad.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jan 18 2021 21:31 utc | 9

And the Brits are doing this why specifically?

Posted by: Jay | Jan 18 2021 21:23 utc | 7

Destabilise Hizbullah, let's be clear.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jan 18 2021 21:38 utc | 10

The Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 2006 followed a false-flag
in which security at the border
experienced an utter muck up (details available).

Prior to the false-flag, in May 2006, just weeks before Israel's false-flag,
John Bolton championed UN resolution 1680 which made
Iran responsible for Hezbollah's actions,
and, per tuned in Zionist Daniel Pipes, Resolution 1680 gave us
the right to invade Iran.

The month before, April 2006, PM Olmert of Israel met with his generals
to understand available plans for invading Lebanon.

Also in April 2006, the Pentagon sent a US Major General to Lebanon
to see what military hardware the Lebanese government needed.
He was the most senior general to have visited Lebanon in a decade.

Also in April 2006, President Siniora of Lebanon was welcomed by GW Bush
in the White House.

In February 2006, a Memorandum of understanding by Hezbollah (Hassan Nasrallah)
and Free patriotic movement (Général Michel Aoun) was signed.

According to General Michel Aoun he was targeted for assassination by Israel jets during the 2006 invasion,
and is presently the President of Lebanon.

Posted by: librul | Jan 18 2021 21:44 utc | 11

@james | Jan 18 2021 20:31 utc | 1

"why is it that the uk, usa and canada are such consistent stooges for israel??? i think this has to do with money"

It appears that UK policy serves only their oligarchy as does US policy.
Both sell out for bribes as business deals, hidden payoffs, campaign funds, and jobs, passed via bagmen, cutouts, political parties, and front entities.
The UK royalty attend a school in NE England that appears to be heavily influenced by zionists, but details needed. Both oligarchies hate socialism and gladly overthrow social democracies for gold, as in Iran 1953 etc. etc.

Posted by: Sam F | Jan 18 2021 21:48 utc | 12

@Posted by: librul | Jan 18 2021 21:44 utc | 11

Clarification: Daniel Pipes quote is from August of 2006,
which was *after* the invasion. The false-flag was intended to cast
blame on Hezbollah. Resolution 1680 made Iran jointly responsible
for Hezbollah's actions.

Posted by: librul | Jan 18 2021 21:51 utc | 13

After such a leak, any self-respecting government and country would shoot those involved in such a blatant case of high-treason - specially all those in the "diret beneficiary relationship" graph. Not that I expect this to happen in Lebanon. But then, this wouldn't even make the news, were it to happen to any Western country.

Posted by: Clueless Joe | Jan 18 2021 21:55 utc | 14

Our establishment politicians, pundits, and media have been raising, in true Orwellian fashion, the spectre of insidious foreign meddling in our countries every chance they can.

Our media, of course, reports all those allegations as accepted fact without any need of evidence or even questions. No use of the words "unsubstantiated" or "baseless" that we suddenly heard every day from them in recent weeks.

All this while they completely ignore detailed, documented reports such as this of what our own countries are doing to others. It's really a strict policy of "see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil" when it comes to the extensive foreign meddling that our countries do elsewhere.

Imagine if this much money and this extensive of a multi-year, detailed, strategic cultivation of relationships, not just of the top leadership, but also of "the second tier of leaders and with commanders at regional and local levels," by some foreign state were found to be taking place in the US, UK, or Canada?

On a related note, Caitlin Johnstone has a good piece on "The Two Faces Of The US Empire"

Paul Edwards contrasts what our establishment politicians, pundits, and media are trying to portray as a "coup" with what they've done to so many other countries

"Coup, Coup, Kachoo..."

Posted by: Canadian Cents | Jan 18 2021 22:00 utc | 15

".. Unfortunately Hizbullah is not likely to be destabilised by such an effort." Laguerre

Posted by: bevin | Jan 18 2021 22:52 utc | 16

To add to or repeat Jay @7's question and ask for greater elucidation from Sam F @12:

Could someone explain the long game here and what's actually in it for the Brits and Canadians to engage in this kind of activity other than purely pro-zionist Israel's alleged safety? There has to be real money being made or a promise of return on investment for these kinds of programs. In the past it was about prying open socialist and social democratic countries for Western extractive and private finance interests - or preventing countries from enacting communism to the same ends, but other than future arms sales to Israel and the Gulf Monarchies (and of course "aid" which always ends up in Western bank accounts) and the destruction of Hizbullah (which benefits Israel of course - or does it?) where does trail to the money end here? Are the US, Canada and Britain really *that* captured by the Israeli zionist camp that they're willing to go to such extreme and perpetual ends to defend the expansionist apartheid state of Israel?

Posted by: _K_C_ | Jan 18 2021 22:52 utc | 17

Also, what does Israel expect to happen if they "successfully" invade Lebanon? Again, just the defeat of Hizbullah or is there some expansionist or extractive goal at play? With the current stalemate (of sorts) between Israel and Hizbullah, what is the West's long game in Lebanon? What exactly does Israel get from destroying H. other than a preventive measure for the invasion and expansion into Lebanon? Sorry if this all sounds naive. I don't know much about the zionist Israeli mindset. Are they convinced that if allowed to exist, groups like H. will eventually somehow lead a successful invasion or destruction of ISRAEL?

Posted by: _K_C_ | Jan 18 2021 22:57 utc | 18


Posted by: bevin | Jan 18 2021 22:52 utc | 16

Always good to see an Israel enthusiast on MoA. There ha

Posted by: Laguerre | Jan 18 2021 23:05 utc | 19

There have been lots in their time. and they've been well paid for their efforts.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jan 18 2021 23:07 utc | 20

And the Brits are doing this why specifically?
Posted by: Jay | Jan 18 2021 21:23 utc | 7

Because they can. Or if you prefer, it's the latest iteration of the Great Game. You know, imperialism. Rest assured that "Honest Joe" Biden would _never_ stoop to such despicable tactics!

Posted by: del | Jan 18 2021 23:26 utc | 21

@18 KC
One major motivation is water. Specifically, the Litani river. The Zionists have been trying to take control of that river since 1919.
And given how wasteful Israel's water policies are, they now need it more than ever.

Posted by: Fnord13 | Jan 18 2021 23:29 utc | 22

Good to see B getting back to his bread and butter

Posted by: Jezabeel | Jan 18 2021 23:59 utc | 23

Posted by: Fnord13 | Jan 18 2021 23:29 utc | 22

Much objectionable Israeli behaviour, especially their frequent wars, is driven by their concerns regarding their ability to ensure their continued, illegal, access to other people's water sources.

Agriculture forms a large part of their economy and most of what they grow, especially that earmarked for export is completely unsuitable for their semi-arid climate, requiring totally unsustainable amounts of water. Particularly other people's water.

Hence the many wars, and all the bullshit they spout to jusyify ths unjustifiable 8s mrtely to distract people from paying attention to their greed/lust for illegal access to water sources belonging to other people

Posted by: Triden | Jan 19 2021 0:24 utc | 25

Posted by: Fnord13 | Jan 18 2021 23:29 utc | 22 and 24

Well, ask and you shall receive holds! Thanks, that sounds like a pretty damn believable answer. Now the question becomes why are the US, Britain and Canada so willing to throw away money and time in order to ensure that the zionist faction in Israel remains in control and that they're potentially able to topple Lebanon (or Syria) even if it's just so that Israel can have water. I still don't see the money there, other than of course the continued viability and growth of Israel, but maybe I don't understand the economics of water.

Posted by: _K_C_ | Jan 19 2021 0:40 utc | 26

_K_C_ @ 17:

If anyone here knew what the "long game" is for Lebanon and the Levant generally, that person would become a target for MI6 and other intel agencies!

Fnord13 @ 22 is on one right track. Israel has needed the Litani River for a long time as it has misused its own water resources for a long time. I recall reading a book by Canadian-Israeli writer Barry Chamish (incidentally, not a fan of the Palestinians) who ranted at considerable length about how Ariel Sharon, when he was a Cabinet minister holding various portfolios including the infrastructure portfolio in the late 1990s, apparently hired friends or acquaintances of his to oversee the water resources side of his infrastructure portfolio.

The Litani River also rises and flows through the Beqaa Valley in southern Lebanon, the richest agricultural region in the country, and most a stronghold of Hezbollah.

Hezbollah controls much of Lebanon’s Shiite-majority areas, including parts of Beirut, southern Lebanon, and the eastern Bekaa Valley region.

Other possible targets in the "long game" are Damascus (air distance from Beirut is 86 km) and Tartus (air distance from Beirut is just over 116 km) in Syria. The Russian Navy leases a facility in Tartus.

Getting control of the Litani River right up to and including its headwaters would mean controlling a lot of farmland and also weakening Hezbollah. If an opportunity to kill two birds with one stone presents itself, the British and the Israelis would not hesitate to use it; indeed this "killing two birds with one stone" must be a cornerstone strategy.

What the British would get out of working with the Israelis to undermine Hezbollah, Lebanon and Syria (and probably undermine Britain's own long-term interests in the region as well), I do not know - though it is possible that the people in Britain involved in the public relations / propaganda industry in that country may very well have connections with Israel.

You ought to watch Al Jazeera's 4-part documentary series "The Lobby" to get a sense of how far and how deeply Israel through its embassy in London has infiltrated British Labour and Britain's other political institutions, and beyond.

For what it is worth also, some people in the PR and media industry in Britain may be sympathetic to Israel. Rupert Murdoch whose News Corporation owns newspapers and broadcasting outlet Sky News in Britain is certainly pro-Israeli. Matthew Freud who runs a PR firm in Britain, may be sympathetic towards Israel; he was married to Rupert Murdoch's daughter Elizabeth for many years. The Freud family, descended from Sigmund Freud, seems to be quite influential in Britain.

Posted by: Jen | Jan 19 2021 0:53 utc | 27

_K_C_ @26, there's also the suggestion that an additional factor could be the BRI, ex. this article from Matthew Ehret:

Posted by: Canadian Cents | Jan 19 2021 0:59 utc | 28

This goes to show: when bribing someone, it's better to offer a salary, than one-off payments.

Posted by: Antiwar7 | Jan 19 2021 1:51 utc | 29

It seems to me that since anything which occurs in the so-called Shia Crescent that doesn't suit whitefella greedies is always blamed on Iran, contrary evidence notwithstanding eg the allegations that the real Yemeni administration's drone attack on the al Saud puppets' oil storage facility, which Iran was blamed for despite a no evidence supporting that, plus considerable evidence that the drones were an indigenous Yemeni design & construction, Iran should get out its chessmasters and knock up a plan.

The greedies are always at their worst when there isn't a lot to distract 'em from their greed.
While I realise this will go down with the Russophiles here like a fart in an elevator, imo Iran should find a lever to get Russia & Germany intensifying their current storm in a teacup way past the foolish jostling.
Take someone like Navalny, a bloke who comes across as a man prepared to do/say anything if there is a dollar in it for him, who is surrounded by a cabal of equally recklessly greedy low-lifes. If Iran can slip a big fat wedge to the Navalny roadshow to get him making announcements that leave no option for the russophobic & next CDU leader Armin Laschet but to respond.
Stirring the leaky nato pot will distract the greedies as they fret and renew the envious rivalries which makes their 'treaty' such a farce. Poor Greece is gonna be really pissed if too much leeway is given to Turkey which it will be cos their geography is up against Russia's. The French will stick close to Germany, but I'm far from certain that post brexit the englanders will want to jump in feet first. The for covid riddled near broke england can't take on any other priorities, although at the very least englander intelligence will be required to shift focus away from the ME & closer to home.
That being one of the few things englanders can do which won't appear to be an obvious waste of resources, since the SIS is given a pass on everything by englander media.

Maybe Navalny is too hard to get to, but Iran mos def needs to disrupt all the euro interference in their region - they owe Russia nothing, the reverse in fact considering the backdowns Russia has gone for in the ME. Getting Russia & Germany caught up whitefella egoistic nonsense could be the go.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Jan 19 2021 2:23 utc | 30

Posted by: james | Jan 18 2021 20:31 utc | 1

Money goes a long way but kompromat goes way further ...

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2021 2:32 utc | 31

U.S. Aligns Key Partners Against Shared Threats in the Middle East

In a sign of the changing political environment in the Middle East, the United States military will move Israel from the U.S. European Command's area of responsibility to that of the U.S. Central Command, DOD officials announced today.
The move is part of unified command plan changes.

When the Reagan administration set up Centcom in 1983, officials left Israel as part of Eucom. Arab nations, except Egypt, did not recognize the Jewish state. U.S. military coordination in the region — including multilateral exercises and operations — would have been complicated.

But as a result, Israel — though surrounded by nations that were in Centcom's area of operations — worked through the Eucom's headquarters in Stuttgart, Germany.

Eucom and Centcom, of course, consulted often.

The need for this set-up has changed. Jordan joined Egypt in recognizing Israel in 1994, and those were the only two Arab countries that recognized Israel until last year when the Abraham Accords were signed at the White House. Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Morocco and Sudan recognized Israel and opened full, diplomatic relations with the nation.

"The easing of tensions between Israel and its Arab neighbors subsequent to the Abraham Accords has provided a strategic opportunity for the United States to align key partners against shared threats in the Middle East," DOD officials said in a written release. "Israel is a leading strategic partner for the United States, and this will open up additional opportunities for cooperation with our U.S. Central Command partners while maintaining strong cooperation between Israel and our European allies."

Posted by: Mao | Jan 19 2021 3:52 utc | 32

America’s Viceroys : The Military and U.S. Foreign Policy, Derek S. Reveron, Palgrave Macmillan, 2007.

"The Pentagon has five regional commands in charge of implementing imperial policy. The heads of these commands are dubbed "viceroys" after the British viceroys during British India."

Posted by: Mao | Jan 19 2021 3:58 utc | 33


Senior Turkish official meets UK's spy chief

Presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin discusses Upper Karabakh, Libya, Middle East, East Med with Richard Moore

The spokesman for Turkey's presidency on Wednesday met with the head of the UK's secret intelligence service (MI6) in the in Turkish capital Ankara.

In the meeting between Ibrahim Kalin and the MI6's Richard Moore at the Presidential Complex, the two addressed security and foreign policy issues, as well as possible cooperation to further develop relations between Turkey and the UK, according to sources speaking on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on speaking to the media.

The two discussed recent developments in the regions of Upper Karabakh and Libya, while also exchanging ideas on common security policies for stability in the Middle East and the Eastern Mediterranean.

The Man With the Golden Swab. UK’s spymaster visits palace after Erdogan family implosion

Posted by: Mao | Jan 19 2021 4:51 utc | 34

World’s top three intelligence chiefs all have one thing in common: Turkey

BEYOND THE BOSPORUS: Burn after reading—MI6 appointment means British, French and US intel services now all headed by Turkish speakers

Posted by: Mao | Jan 19 2021 4:58 utc | 35

@ Sam F | Jan 18 2021 21:48 utc | 12...thanks sam... that is an answer similar to @ Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2021 2:32 utc | 31... thanks arch...

the fact the media are beholden to israel seems a part of it too, as @jen notes .. that one example seems universal... no one in power seems to escape it..

@ debs... interesting speculation... thanks..

Posted by: james | Jan 19 2021 4:59 utc | 36

Just like their American cousins, the British have spread their tentacles around the world to infiltrate the internal politics of dozens of nations--even as they hysterically wail that their phony "democracy" is being infiltrated by the Russians, Chinese, or Iranians.

Indeed, the Anglo Axis nations in general always adopt an aggressive pose of playing the victim and projecting their own crimes onto designated enemy nations to distract from their penetration of societies throughout the globe--which they conceal behind the banner of the Western Civilizing Mission ... I mean ... crusading for Democracy, Freedom, Human Rights, and All That Is Right And Good In The World.

The sun never set on the British Empire, as it only mutated into the more malignant Anglo-American Empire of today.

Oh, Perfidious Albion--you never went away.

Inside the temple of covert propaganda: The Integrity Initiative and the UK’s scandalous information war

Integrity Initiative is the biggest story of 2018 – but not because of anything it did

Revealed: UK sets up media influencing project in Venezuela amid secretive £750,000 ‘democracy promotion’ programme

Posted by: ak74 | Jan 19 2021 5:53 utc | 37

del, 21:

“Because they can” isn’t an answer for “why”.

Also the “great game” is the UK, and by extension the USA in the 21st century, challenging the Russians in central Asia. I’m not aware of Russia having a major interest in Lebanon; it’s not even a center of eastern orthodox Christianity the way Syria is a bit.

I can think of a power, and perhaps powers, that the UK would want to challenge in Lebanon, but it’s not Russia, or even Iran.

Posted by: Jay | Jan 19 2021 5:59 utc | 38

@Jezabeel | Jan 18 2021 23:59 utc | 23

Agreed! It is about time now that a period of new wars is about to begin.

Posted by: Norwegian | Jan 19 2021 6:23 utc | 39

Pretty clear why Corbyn was a non-starter for a position of power in the UK!

Posted by: Ant | Jan 19 2021 7:54 utc | 40

If somebody wonders why the UK: The Five-Eyes-Agreement has as one of it`s provisions the geographic division of the world into different spheres. Lebanon is apparently part of the sphere where Britain is responsible for spy operations.
(By the way, this is also the reason why the USA still needs the Five Eyes and can`t do it all on it`s own. It could, but that would mean building up independent spy-networks from scratch in large parts of the world and being "blind" for a few years until they become operational.)

Speaking of "the West" in this context is wrong. It`s specifically the Five Eyes. Other Western governments aren`t involved and were almost certainly left in the dark.

France is probably even competing with the UK for influence in Lebanon.

Posted by: m | Jan 19 2021 8:16 utc | 41

Jay @38, m @41 so are you suggesting my tax pounds are being spent on annoying the French? I thought it might be something to do with Hizbullah standing in the way of further Israeli military aggression in the part of the Golan they haven’t occupied yet for the benefit of Genie Oil. No doubt there are plenty of kick-backs for the spooks. It’s not just Boris Johnson’s cabinet and their mates who get to corruptly benefit from Global Britain.

Posted by: Phil Espin | Jan 19 2021 9:22 utc | 42

james #1

why is it that the uk, usa and canada are such consistent stooges for israel??? i think this has to do with money too, if i am not mistaken.. it can't be about sanity...

Take a look at a map of the middle east and you will see that there is only one state that lies in the path of overland transport between Africa and the middle east - Israel. That is why it was established imo: initially to control oil extraction states in the middle east and frustrate overland transport in favor of maritime. Today the OBOR is the greatest single threat to the private finance capitalist elite on earth.

The englanders have been playing the great game for centuries and a read of Peter Hopkirk's book will give you an insight to their obsession.

We recently saw just how mendacious is its sabotage of politicians adverse to its interests with the single minded destruction of Jeremy Corbyn and everything he stands for.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jan 19 2021 9:32 utc | 43

The events of the Rwandan genocide of 1994 are often interpreted in such a manner that the UK/USA and France supported different fractions in the Rwandan Civil War 1990-1994 of which one (the one supported by France) eventually comitted the genocide.

So France and the UK were waging a war by proxy against each other in Africa in the 1990s.

"The West" is not a political entity, but a cultural one, in the same manner as "the Muslim World". However, unlike "the Muslim World" "the West" did indead achieve a kind of political unity beyond cultural ties and ad-hoc-coalitions, but only in the form of several overlapping but independent organisations whith each of them having a creatly defined limited scope. The term "empire" applies only colloquial. NATO encompasses most Western countries (not all!), but it is a strictly military alliance and it`s provisions apply only to Europa and North America. So two NATO countries might wage a war by proxy against each other in another part of the world. NATO might have a common stance towards Russia while at the same time the EU and the USA quarrel over trade etc.

I don`t know for sure if the UK and France work against each other in Lebanon. My suspicion is based on the facts that they have waged a war of proxy against each other before, that France isn`t part of the Five-Eyes spy club and that we never read anything about any joint French-British efforts despite the fact that France has traditionally been influential in Lebanon.

Posted by: m | Jan 19 2021 10:50 utc | 44

Debsisdead: "covid riddled near broke england" ????

Comical claims by mainstream economists that the facts have changed, Tuesday, January 19, 2021 by Bill Mitchell

Further, these mainstream economists, drunk on their own self-importance, are trying to appear as they know what is going on – but obviously trailing reality – have not really changed their minds.

The FT editorial claims that:

There is, however, an ever-present risk that the market will move against governments and the cost of borrowing will rise to such an extent that the choice will be between a painful default or vicious austerity. Keeping a watchful eye on the public finances can prevent societies from ever having to make such a choice.
There have been countless statements like this published in the media and academic papers for decades.

None of the predictions ever come to pass.

They were predicting the Japanese government would fail because the markets would turn against it.

The only thing the markets do is put their hands out continually for on-going corporate welfare in the form of government debt issuance.

And when the debt-issuance doesn’t satisfy their greed (as happened in Australia at the turn of the century) they complain and demand and expansion of debt issuance irrespective of the fiscal position.

Posted by: c | Jan 19 2021 10:53 utc | 45

I feel this analysis lacks a deeper understanding of the Lebanese context.

Lebanese security officials and government ministers do not need to be bribed with money. Their most desired bribe is ‘talking to a white man’. The White Man has power, and the local officials wish to leverage that power for their own political ambitions. So they will cooperate with whatever White Man shows up selling a project.

Also, one shouldn’t think of this as infiltration of a sovereign government. There is no government in Lebanon. It is dominated by 6 factions who ensure their is no real central authority to regulate local affairs. They prefer to leave governing to third parties so that they can focus on stealing and graft. British ‘training’ of the security services is no secret and endorsed by all parties. They are relieved someone is handling the technical stuff they don’t want to deal with, and it builds a relationship with foreign powers that can be leveraged for personal gain.

At this point, I look at the British effort as mainly a mitigation strategy to manage blowback from their Syria operations. They don’t want destabilization to spread to Lebanon (and eventually to Europe), and since the Lebanese government refuses to govern, the British come in to shape the environment to their interests. But it is not supplanting a sovereign government as much as filling in a vacuum of absent government.

This analysis also conflicts with the previous one regarding infiltrating protest groups. If the protest groups were created (or directed) by the British to overthrow the government, how then to explain why the security services (also infiltrated by the British) harshly cracked down on the protestors? No, I don’t think its the British puppeteering both sides. The Lebanese have agency and we are active participants of our own downfall. The British are trying to gain influence and shape the landscape but I don’t see that they are dictating events (yet).

Posted by: RedLeb | Jan 19 2021 12:57 utc | 46

Funny how this blog and Grayzone continue to churn out propaganda as if it were 2002 and an American president and his British allies were about to invade Syria instead of Iraq. You do realize, however, that this kind of crap only serves to allow Assad a free hand in bombing civilians who he smears as jihadists. You provide cover for "the axis of resistance" in the same way liberals provided cover for Obama's drone strikes.

Posted by: Louis N Proyect | Jan 19 2021 13:37 utc | 47

Navalny will be charged with treason for his antics during his trip to Germany.

He should have remained at his house in Berlin. He could have given interviews to Bernard.

The 30 day detainment is to allow time for the Russians to get their ducks in a row.

NATO let the cat out of the bag when they demanded his release.

Foolish that....


Posted by: Dr. George W Oprisko | Jan 19 2021 13:50 utc | 48

You do realize, however, that this kind of crap only serves to allow Assad a free hand in bombing civilians who he smears as jihadists. You provide cover for "the axis of resistance" in the same way liberals provided cover for Obama's drone strikes.

Dear Louis, would appear the troll is you!

The axis of resistance comprises resistance to the predations of Israel.

Were she to return to the 1947 borders per UN resolutions, I could see your point. But she covets Eretz Israel.
Her leaders all read the Koran. They believe Gentiles are theirs to use as cannon fodder. Fools to the chase.

Like you " Louis N Proyect " Jewish troll...........


Posted by: Dr. George W Oprisko | Jan 19 2021 13:54 utc | 49

This has been going on over there for more than a year, yet I've read nor seen any mainstream media coverage.

Par for the course.


The irony…take guns from law abiding citizens but not criminals

Baltimore’s “Safe Streets” Director Fatally Shot While Visiting Housing Project

Posted by: Dogon Priest | Jan 19 2021 13:56 utc | 50

Fnord13 | Jan 18 2021 23:29 utc | 22 and others.

Never forget the Oil. The Golan is supposed to be sitting on a large (up to "massive"-) field. The Lebanese, Israel others (Turkey/Crete further north) are arguing about the territorial sea separation line between them and the rights to the disputed fields.

Israel has the ambition to become an oil/gas hub towards Crete-Greece-EU. (plus it's sales to Egypt). The latter leaves me with a question? Egypt is next to Libya which has fabulous reserves. Presumably the Israel=>Egypt lines could be used in the opposite direction if there is sufficient volume? Other input? The gas line Qatar/Pars => Jordan(?) and those from Saudi Arabia or Iraq (Kurdish territoy as well) might become interesting to Israel. Last but not least are the fields off Gaza.

Syria. It used to be self-suffient in oil. The US is stealing it's oil from the east. (and grain to provoke starvation) The US has seized 7 Iranian tankers up to now, which were destined (probably) for Syria - could have been Venezuela. The Levantine basin off Syria has not yet been explored properly.

I am sure I am missing other oil-related factors.
As usual - follow the money.

Posted by: Stonebird | Jan 19 2021 14:01 utc | 51

Posted by: Louis N Proyect | Jan 19 2021 13:37 utc | 47

You do realize, however, that this kind of crap only serves to allow Assad a free hand in bombing civilians who he smears as jihadists.

What is your position on the free hand given to Turkey, Daesh, USA, israel, UAE, Qatar and the House of HarkonnenSaud in bombing Syrian civilians?
What is your position on the free hand given to israel to shoot Palestinian children in the streets and maintain two giant gulags in occupied Palestine?

I eagerly await your response.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2021 14:05 utc | 52

I think the idea with the US/UK/Fr/etc obstructionism in the Middle East was most essentially to prevent the movement of ME hydrocarbons OVERLAND to Europe, Africa, or points East, thus to maintain control. All the military and navy stuff is much less relevant otherwise. And thus to promote weak & corrupt governments, reactionary regimes of all sorts, fundamentalist religions, and so on. But I think it is too late now really. So the Middle East may finally get some slack going forward. Not good for the Izzies though.

Posted by: Bemildred | Jan 19 2021 14:29 utc | 53

Proyect @Jan19 13:37 #47 does his usual drive-by finger-pointing in a foolish and lame attempt to misdirect.

And, as usual, he only generates ridicule and contempt from other commenters. His persistence isn't just myopic, it's pathetic.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jan 19 2021 15:42 utc | 54

Dear Louis at 47,

may I ask: are your with Syrian Observatory and Bellingcat these days? Staff or consultant?

Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | Jan 19 2021 16:20 utc | 55

from what we know about British Intelligence, we either have a great deal to fear
or perhaps nothing to fear at all
(British intelligence)

mind you, watch out for his wife....she does know all the answers

Posted by: chris m | Jan 19 2021 17:09 utc | 56

@ uncle tungsten | Jan 19 2021 9:32 utc | 43.. thanks uncle t.. i have given over to the idea that it isn't just control of oil or land zones as you note, but something bigger or this wouldn't be continuing on as it has.. there is no rationale for usa, uk and canada to be so slavishly devoted to israel without it being primarily about money..

Posted by: james | Jan 19 2021 17:26 utc | 57

Mr. Dr. George W Oprisko

I agree with your post.

Posted by: fyi | Jan 19 2021 17:30 utc | 58

I don't know, the return of Nawalny seems to me rather a well calculated provocation and the Russian authorities fell for it. What's the point in arresting him? Didn't the Russian government maintain so far that he is a totally unimportant opposition figure who one day just happened to get ill? Well apparently he is at least important enough to be arrested.

Posted by: m | Jan 19 2021 18:02 utc | 59

Posted by: m | Jan 19 2021 18:02 utc | 59

He was arrested for breaking the terms of his suspended sentence not because of this Novichok nonsense.
That is the law in Russia. I don't see why he should be above the law.

Posted by: arby | Jan 19 2021 18:15 utc | 60

James @ 57--
Money plus huge influence.
eg; Canada's involvement in Ukraine.

Posted by: arby | Jan 19 2021 18:18 utc | 61

Yes, that`s the reason that has been given by the Russian authorities. Many will believe that this is just a pretext. Even more will be convinced if Nawalny ends up behind bars permanently.

Posted by: m | Jan 19 2021 18:50 utc | 62

What are you talking about? He was told that he would be put in jail when he returned
and surprise, surprise, he was.
Seems to me that it was quite clear that he was serving a suspended sentence and not some made up story by Russia.
Who cares what many in the west will think?
Most in the west are very convinced that Putin and all Russians are evil, so what means one more pile of poop on the heap?

Posted by: arby | Jan 19 2021 19:07 utc | 63

@ 61 arby... in the case of canada and ukraine - that is a separate, but equally disgusting story... so long as we have freeland on the scene, expect more of same...

Posted by: james | Jan 19 2021 19:44 utc | 64

Obama publicly acknowledged the US was arming Syrian 'rebels' who are really anti-government terrorists of various stripes. It is just a small leap to subvert corrupt and traitorous Lebanese to similarly overthrow the legitimate democratically elected Lebanese government. Hang 'em high.

Sadly, the Five Eyes group of troublemakers have become captive nations in the service of political zionism, therefore placing holders of Five Eye passports in danger overseas, now their governments have fully embraced zionist geopolitical objectives as outlined by Oded Yinon in his 'Strategy for Israel in the Nineteen eighties.'

This damning document is now difficult to find on the net, whereas a few years ago there were tens of thousands of entries.

To put the boot on the other foot, imagine if foreign governments armed and financed 'rebels' in Washington, London, Ottawa, Canberra or Wellington. Oh wait a minute, Tel-Aviv already finances a vocal minority to subvert national policy in their favour.

Posted by: Paul | Jan 19 2021 20:01 utc | 65


Your mention of Canada-Ukraine also reminded me that the UK took 8000 hardcore OUN people after WWII. Their descendants are running the Stepan Bandera museum in London. Ukraine also seems to have played a big part in Russiagate, MH-17, the Skripal incident.

Posted by: Heironymous Dosh | Jan 19 2021 20:17 utc | 66

Sarah Le Mesurier (nee Tosh) appears to have been White Helmet Guy's second 'wife'. They were 'divorced' after he moved to Turkey. There he 'married' Emma Winberg during the White Helmet part of his mission.

Use favorite translator on:

I wonder if his funeral looked like it came straight out of Truffaut's 1977 film The Man Who Loved Women

Posted by: Heironymous Dosh | Jan 19 2021 21:00 utc | 67

@ Heironymous Dosh | Jan 19 2021 20:17 utc | 66 quote "Ukraine also seems to have played a big part in Russiagate, MH-17, the Skripal incident."

absolutely! it is just one more of the many spokes in the whole wheel... any way to demonize russia is the name of the game... the west intel agencies with western msm in tow - are determined to repeat this story from any angle they can... bottom line - russia is evil... that is the msm message... putin is the leader of an evil country.... most people who can step outside of this constant mantra can see how insane it is... but for those who can't - they swallow the propaganda as given... cheers..

Posted by: james | Jan 20 2021 0:07 utc | 68

and the appartments in amsterdam and the money laundering by Mayday:
and Winberg

Posted by: gary | Jan 21 2021 10:26 utc | 69

Some years ago there was a mini-scandal about how MI6 obliged his agents to pretend they are in love, up to "marrying" and having kids while only as part of a mission. One guy did so to infiltrate the so-called Tarnac group. Wives and partners complained they were treated as mere objects + the psychological effects on both partners, not to mention the rest of the family. MI6 claimed they would address the issue and not do it again, haha..
Seems that Le Mesurier could not cope with all that shit at some point. I hope he had remorse for the thousands Syrian killed with his help.

Posted by: Mina | Jan 21 2021 10:46 utc | 70

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