A little step for a wider sharing. I really hope to get more people involved. We need to use also this tool (Fb) and not only be used by it.
In July, General John Allen, tasked by United States President Barack Obama to oversee the war against the Islamic State (I.S. or ISIS), said: “ISIS is losing.” It was a clear and direct statement that the U.S. bombing campaign in Iraq and Syria had been able to degrade the capacity of the I.S. Allen’s comment was echoed by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and by Obama himself. There was no hesitation in the U.S. administration that its strategy against the I.S. had produced positive results and would eventually result in the destruction of the I.S.
Before making his comment, General Allen was in Turkey, where he helped negotiate the use of Turkish bases for U.S. drones and aircraft in the bombing campaign against the I.S. The Turks, in return, got the green light to bomb Kurdish positions. That the Kurdish fighters had been in the lead on the ground against the I.S. did not seem to worry Allen. He saw the Turkish allowance for U.S. aircraft as an “important turn”. It was all that mattered. How did Allen come to the view that the “ISIS is losing”? He noted that he believes that the I.S. “has been checked strategically, operationally, and, by and large, tactically”. The word “belief” is crucial here.
The purpose of Russia’s direct military intervention in Syria is clear and driven by tactical considerations. It is also impractical.
President Putin has made it clear from the outset that he is committed to President Assad’s continued rule in Damascus, and repeated as much during his recent address to the United Nations General Assembly. Russia’s Federal Council gave him its unanimous agreement to use force, at his request and as a sign of Russia’s determination to combat terrorism in Syria. Action followed immediately, with scant warning to Western and Middle Eastern forces operating in the theatre, and with only the most cursory consideration as to what Russia and others might consider to be “terrorist forces.” Russian actions show clearly—and unsurprisingly—that all opponents of the Assad regime are terrorists for Putin, with Islamic State low on the present target list.
The remarkable thing about Jeremy Corbyn, the hard-left outsider who stunned the British establishment by capturing the leadership of the Labour Party, is not his alleged lack of patriotism. Whether he wishes to sing God Save the Queen at public events seems a rather trivial matter. The remarkable thing about his brand of leftism is how reactionary it is.
Corbyn is an old-fashioned socialist who would like to soak the rich and put transport and utilities back under state control. His rhetoric of class war suggests a complete break with mainstream social democracy.
U.S.-backed rebels in Syria appealed to the Obama administration Friday for antiaircraft missiles to defend their positions against relentless Russian airstrikes that have so far mostly targeted the moderate opposition to President Bashar al-Assad’s rule.
A joint statement issued by the United States and other Western allies who have collectively aided moderate rebel units urged Russia to stop targeting moderate rebels and “to focus its efforts on fighting ISIL,” the acronym referring to the Islamic State.
Russia waded deeper into Syria’s civil war Thursday, striking rebel positions far from Islamic State strongholds for a second day and leaving little doubt that the immediate target of the intervention is to secure President Bashar al-Assad’s hold on power.
The expanding Russian involvement in Syria threatened to further complicate efforts to secure a negotiated settlement to the four-year-old war at a time when the influx of refugees into Europe and the endurance of the Islamic State are focusing world attention on the unrelenting bloodshed in Syria.
Oh I love the sound of a Su-24 bombing “Caliphate” goons in the morning. Smells like…victory. Well, not really. Because we, the Masters of the Universe, are not doing the bombing.
I’m waiting for my man with twenty-six devalued euros in my hand right beside the embassy of the Empire of Chaos, which looks sideways at the Brandenburg Gate. All around, major preparations for the “festivities” celebrating the 25th anniversary of German reunification.
George Orwell said, “In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.”
These are dark times, in which the propaganda of deceit touches all our lives. It is as if political reality has been privatised and illusion legitimised. The information age is a media age. We have politics by media; censorship by media; war by media; retribution by media; diversion by media – a surreal assembly line of clichés and false assumptions.
Within the American polity there is a cyclical requiem in the wake of each mass shooting – a predictable collective lament for a calamity that ostensibly everyone regrets and nobody can resolve. Profiles of the victims emerge as reporters opine in front of police tape, wringing every last detail from tear-stained survivors. Gradually facts about the shooter emerge, followed by endless speculation about his (they are almost always men) motives before the president calls for prayer and healing.
Russia’s military action in Syria raises the stakes for Europe in a significant way, but how should we react? One temptation is to pull back from anything that might smack of provocation: the Russian bear is growling; let’s see how we can quieten it down, goes that line of thinking. And talking to Russia is necessary – even more so now. But that is not the same as rolling over and making the concessions Moscow demands. That is a trap Vladimir Putin could be setting. Resilience is called for. If Europe wants better relations with Russia, firm messages are urgently needed.