Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Syria Conflict: Russia Acts





Russia's Aerospace Forces planes have started dealing pinpoint strikes against the positions of the Islamic State group in Syria, outlawed in Russia as terrorist, Russian Defence Ministry spokesman, Major-General Igor Konashenkov, told the world's media today.

"In accordance with a decision by the Supreme Commander-in-Chief, President Vladimir Putin, Russian Aerospace Forces planes on Wednesday started an operation to deal pinpoint strikes against ground targets of the IS terrorist group in the territory of the Syrian Arab Republic," he said. "The Russian Defence Minister, General of the Army Sergey Shoigu has told his counterparts in the Collective Security Treaty Organization that in the course of the military operation in Syria, Russian warplanes have been attacking military equipment, communication centers, motor vehicles, and munitions and fuel and lubricants depots of the Islamic State terrorists. 

In just 24 hours, Russian President, Vladimir Putin, changed the game in the Middle East
Conflict by decisive action against the IS terrorist group in Syria, calling Washington’s bluff
on it’s supposed “fight” against the terrorist group and exposing the double-dealing of
The US and its Saudi/Qatari allies in the five year civil war in Syria.

Russian Air Force strikes IS targets in Syria.

The upper house of Russia's parliament on Wednesday empowered the Russian President to use Russian military outside the national territory. As the chief of the presidential staff Sergey Ivanov explained, the air operation was to be launched against the Islamic State in Syria at the request of Syria's president Bashar Al Assad. Earlier, Vladimir Putin said that Russia would not be involved in operations on the ground.
The request for use of force was sent by the president after considering the large number of Russian citizens, who went to join terrorist groups fighting in Syria, head of the presidential administration Sergey Ivanov told media. There are thousands of them, and Russia's national security would be under threat, should they return home, he added.

Ivanov stressed that no ground operations are planned in Syria. Russia would use its warplanes to hit terrorist targets when requested by the Syrian government. He stressed that unlike the US-led coalition of countries that bombs militant troops in Syria, Russia was invited to do so by the legal authorities of Syria and thus follows international law.

The development comes after Moscow has intensified involvement in Syria, establishing an Iraqi-based military communications center with Damascus, Baghdad and Tehran.

The main functions of the center are the collection, processing, compilation and analysis of current information about the situation in the Middle East in the context of the fight with "Islamic State"
A  Russian military-diplomatic source indicated that the establishment of the information center in Baghdad to  would coordinate the four countries fight against IS:

"The success of the center in the near future will create conditions for the formation on its basis of the coordination committee for the purpose of planning operations and control of units of the armed forces of these four countries fighting against ISIS," - he said. According to the source, established in the  Baghdad center, will be representatives of the General staffs of Russia, Syria, Iran and Iraq. "The main functions of this structure will be the collection, processing, compilation and analysis of current information about the situation in the Middle East region in the context of the fight against the "Islamic state", the distribution of intel and its operational transfer to the General staffs of these countries," - he explained. The information center will be headed by the officers of the armed forces of four countries for three months at a time on a rotating basis. "In accordance with the agreement reached, the information center will be managed in the next three months by the Iraqi side". 

It also happened just days after President Putin called for an international anti-terrorist effort in Syria that would include the government of President Assad at the UN General Assembly. Western nations have been seeking to oust Assad since 2011, but several key nations such as Germany, France, Britain  have confirmed they would not be opposed to Assad staying in power for a transitional period, which would include defeating the Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) terrorist group. This is a cracking up of the Washington supported demand for the removal of Assad and regime change in Syria long planned by the US Neo-Cons and their Pentagon allies. The slippage in European "solidarity" is a severe political defeat for the Washington Warmongers and the Obama Administration has been put on the backfoot internationally and forced to change it's tune on Syria.

IS has taken over large portions of Syria and neighboring Iraq and is on its way to creating a wider "caliphate" modelled on medieval Islamic conquests. Islamic State has consolidated its position with a combination of successful raids, barbaric brutality, destruction of the artifacts of ancient civilisation heritage in the territories it has seized and active campaigning on social media targeting potential recruits and supporters worldwide. Slavery of women and genocide of minority Christian and other religions populations including non-Sunni islamic groups characterises the so-called "caliphate", in reality a collection of sociopaths and bloodthirsty pyschotic murderers misusing the Koran as a cover for their depravities.

There are other significant militant groups active in Syria, including an Al Qaeda branch in the region, Al Nusra Front, which competes with IS for territory, resources and fighters. Another major player in the country is the Kurdish militia, which has been defending the Kurd-populated north from IS with only minimum assistance from the US-led coalition and deliberate opposition to the Kurdish efforts by NATO ally, Turkey which has bombed Kurdish forces under the pretence of attacking IS.

President Putin's address to the UN General Assembly, Monday, September 28, 2015.

“I cannot help asking those who have caused this situation: Do you realize now what you have done?” he asked. “But I am afraid the question will hang in the air, because policies based on self-confidence and belief in one’s exceptionality and impunity have never been abandoned.” He cited the example of revolutions in the Middle East and Northern Africa, where people have wished for change. However, instead of reforms and the triumph of democracy and progress “we’ve got violence, poverty and social disaster, and human rights, including the right to life, to which no weight is given.” “Rather than bringing about reforms, aggressive foreign interference has resulted in the brazen destruction of national institutions and the lifestyle itself,” he said.

A single center of domination emerged in the world after the Cold War era ended, Putin stated. Those who were at the “top of this pyramid” were tempted to think that “if they were so strong and exceptional, they knew what to do better than others." “Therefore they do not have to reckon with the UN, which instead of automatically authorising, legitimising the necessary decisions often creates obstacles or in other words ‘stands in the way’.” Russia believes that attempts to undermine the authority and legitimacy of the United Nations are “extremely dangerous” and could lead to the collapse of the entire system of international relations, the Russian President said. Speaking to the world leaders and policymakers gathered before him, he urged for unity in the further development of the UN.

Power vacuums in the Middle East or regions of North Africa have led to the emergence of lawless areas which immediately started to be filled with extremists and terrorists, Putin said. Islamic State militants (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL), who gained a foothold in Iraq and Syria, are now seeking to dominate the whole of the Islamic world, he said. “[Islamic State] ranks include former Iraqi servicemen who were thrown onto the street after the invasion of Iraq in 2003. Many recruits also come from Libya – a country whose statehood has been destroyed as a result of gross violations of UNSC resolution 1973.” Some of the extremists have defected from the ‘moderate’ opposition in Syria, which has been supported by some Western states, he stressed. “First, they are armed and trained and then they defect to the so-called Islamic State. Besides, the Islamic State did not just come from nowhere. It was also initially forged as a tool against undesirable secular regimes,” he explained. He described it as “hypocritical and irresponsible” to turn a blind eye to the channels through which terrorists are financed while making declarations about their threat to the whole world. “We believe that any attempts to play games with terrorists, let alone arm them, is not only short-sighted, but ‘fire hazardous.’ This may result in a global terrorist threat increasing dramatically and engulfing new regions of the world,” he said.

Putin urged for cooperation with Syrian government forces fighting terrorists on the ground.

“We think it is an enormous mistake to refuse to cooperate with the Syrian government and its armed forces who are valiantly fighting terrorism face to face,” he said. “We should finally acknowledge that no one but President Assad's armed forces and Kurdish militia are truly fighting Islamic State and other terrorist organizations in Syria,” he added. Russia has been providing military-technical assistance to Iraq, Syria and other states who lead the fight against terrorism in the region, he noted. Putin proposed the joining of efforts and the creation of a broad international coalition against terrorism. He proposed discussions at the UNSC about a resolution aimed at coordinating forces to confront IS and other terrorist organizations, based on the principles of the UN Charter. If a comprehensive strategy of political and economic stabilization of crisis-struck countries is developed, then there will be a hope of tackling the problem of the refugee crisis, Putin stated. “The flow of people who were forced to leave their homeland has literally flooded the neighboring countries and then Europe,” he said calling it a “new painful migration of peoples.” He stressed that the fundamental solution to the refugee crisis is rooted in restoring statehood where it has been destroyed, strengthening government institutions where they are weak and providing comprehensive assistance to the peoples’ countries of origin.

In a statement of calculated hypocrisy and sham concern today at the UN, US Secretary of State, John Kerry, flanked by Samantha Lie-Face Power, read out a list of supposed “victories” against the IS by the US sponsored “Coalition” against terrorism. Most of the “victories" were achievements of the Kurdish militias (actively being hindered by US NATO ally Turkey) not by the US itself. Mr Kerry was unable to explain how IS has managed to continuously expand its territory, threaten Baghdad, murder thousands of innocent civilians in captured areas, recruit thousands of militants from Western countries and import them to Syria, organise bank accounts and import arms and equipment despite the supposed opposition of the US/Saudi Coalition and its “airstrikes” claimed to be occurring on a continuous basis? The other significant point avoided by Mr Kerry, is that his “airstrikes” are illegal and without any authority in international law, whereas Russia’s actions are by invitation of the elected Government of Syria and thus fully in accord with the UN Charter.

In another example of the Washington Lie Factory, US Secretary of Defence, Ashton Carter, in a brass-faced statement to media today claimed that Russia’s airstrikes in Syria targeted Syrian rebels other than IS without producing a shred of evidence to back up his outrageous claims. This proves that Washington is in a funk of shambolic disarray over the collapse of its foreign policy myths and dumkopfs like Carter are prepared to say anything to the media rather than lose face on these issues. It also confirms that the Washington head honchos consider the rest of the world are brainless idiots. Carry on digging your holes, Mr Carter. Seems you don’t need any help either.

The Western Media immediately began the disinformation war right on cue; Sky News, the BBC and the Swedish TV Service immediately repeated Carter's lies and other elements of the Western propaganda machine were quick to join in. 

The George Soros funded so-called "White Helmets" published a photo on their twitter account allegedly showing a child casualty of the Russian airstrikes:

The White Helmets @SyriaCivilDef
Russia strike in Homs today. 33 civilians killed including 3 children and 1 @SyriaCivilDef volunteer.

Eagle-eyed Twitterites quickly established that the photo had previously been published five days ago on September 25 thus exposing another Western propaganda hoax, disgracefully using an innocent child as their propaganda dupe.

The "White Helmets" opposes the Assad Government and is a close associate of the terrorist Al-Nusra Front. 

More disinformation from the New York Times and the BBC:

"Russian officials and analysts portrayed the move as an attempt both to fight Islamic State militants and to try to ensure the survival of President Bashar al-Assad of Syria, Russia’s main ally in the Middle East. But Homs is not under the control of the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL".

New York Times (9/30/15)

"A Syrian opposition activist network, the Local Co-ordination Committees, said Russian warplanes hit five towns—Zafaraneh, Rastan, Talbiseh, Makarmia and Ghanto—resulting in the deaths of 36 people, including five children.

None of the areas targeted were controlled by IS, activists said".

—BBC (9/30/15)

 Whereas, AFP reported from Rastan,( the same town mentioned in the BBC report as not controlled by IS) on 21 September:

"The Islamic State jihadist group executed nine men and a boy it accused of being gay in central and northern Syria on Monday, a monitoring group said.

 The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the jihadists shot dead seven men in Rastan, a town in Homs province of central Syria, “after accusing them of being homosexual.”

—AFP (9/21/15)