Thursday, October 08, 2015

NATO to Deploy More Troops Near Russia's Borders

NATO to Deploy More Troops Near Russia’s Borders

by Stephen Lendman

America dominates NATO, calling the shots, pressuring or bullying other members to go along. They serve US interests, an agenda threatening world peace.

Meeting in Brussels on October 8, NATO defense ministers announced “further steps to enhance collective” security at a time no threats exists - except invented ones used as pretexts to increase military spending and wage aggressive wars.

The Atlantic Alliance is a US-dominated instrument for endless conflicts, a tool for mass slaughter and destruction, a threat to humanity’s survival. Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg announced plans to boost NATO’s rapid reaction force strength, more troops to be deployed near Russia’s borders.

Two more regional headquarters will be opened in Hungary and Slovakia, operating along with six others in Eastern Europe (in Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Romania), Stoltenberg saying:

“NATO will defend you. NATO is on the ground. NATO is ready” - against what, he didn’t say, adding: “We now have everything in place to make the Response Force stronger, faster and more capable.”

Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov responded, saying “(a)n invented excuse about the suggested threat coming from Russia is possibly just camouflage used to disguise the plans to further expand NATO toward our borders.”

“We are talking about a buildup. There have been statements about a larger contingent. We are talking about an increase of military presence. And it is military presence practically near the Russian borders.” 

“Of course, any plans to bring NATO’s military infrastructure closer to the Russian Federation will lead to reciprocal steps needed to restore the necessary parity.”

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said “(f)irst of all, we need to hear and understand the position of those who take such actions.” 

“They need to tell us about their goals and objectives so that we could comment on them. So far, none of the latest events added stability to the European continent. On the contrary, this stability is being put in jeopardy.”

Provocative military exercises like Trident Juncture, ongoing from September 28 to November 6, involving 36,000 troops from 30 countries in multiple European locations, the Mediterranean Sea and Canada force Russia to react defensively.

Putin explained earlier, saying “(i)f someone threatens our territories, it means that we will have to aim our armed forces accordingly at the territories from where the threat is coming. How else could it be? It is NATO that approaches our borders. It’s not like we are moving anywhere.”

Washington is acting more aggressively than any time since the end of the Cold War - in the Asia-Pacific as well as Europe.

On October 8, the Navy Times said the Pentagon intends deploying US ships to Chinese waters - “inside the 12-nautical-mile territorial limit China claims for its man-made island chain.”

“(A)pproval of the mission is imminent,” - directly challenging China provocatively. On September 1, Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said the “United States will fly, sail and operate wherever” it pleases anywhere in the world.

Beijing expressed “serious concern” about earlier US plans to send warships and aircraft into South China Sea waters. At the time, it said “freedom of navigation does not give one country’s military aircraft and ships free access to another country’s territorial waters and airspace.”

Expect a similar response this time. Challenging Russia and China provocatively shows the recklessness of US policy, run by neocon lunatics threatening world peace, risking another global war, this one if launched able to end life on earth.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

Visit his blog site at 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

Russia v. America on Syria

Russia v. America on Syria

by Stephen Lendman

What a difference a few days made! The Middle East dynamic changed dramatically. Russia’s intervention against ISIS in Syria has Obama officials scrambling for what to do next. The “empire” took a stunning body blow. It’s just the beginning.

The administration’s phony war on ISIS is increasingly transparent. Now in its 9th day, Russian air power accomplished what Washington never attempted, waging REAL war on all terrorist elements in Syria, destroying their weapons, munitions and facilities, even their will to fight with thousands fleeing for safe havens, supplemented by Syrian ground forces battling them more effectively than ever, regaining lost territory.

America’s anti-Russian strategy since replacing Ukraine’s democratic government with Nazi-infested fascists includes counterproductive sanctions, ineffective propaganda, fear-mongering, saber-rattling military exercises close to its borders and deploying increasing numbers of US troops in Eastern Europe - provocations risking direct confrontation.

Instead of cooperating with Russia against the scourge of terrorism, US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter ruled it out, saying:

“We are not prepared to cooperate in a strategy, which as we explained, is flawed - tragically flawed - on the Russians' part,” - code language reflecting Washington’s fear that it’s Greater Middle East agenda is jeopardized, a scheme to  dominate North African, Middle East and Central Asian countries to Russian and Chinese borders, then targeting Moscow and Beijing for regime change.

Carter continued, adding “(d)espite what the Russians say, we have not agreed to cooperate with Russia so long as they continue to pursue a mistaken strategy and hit these targets.”

"What we will do is continue basic, technical discussions on professional safety procedures for our pilots flying (over) Syria. That is it.” 

“We will keep the channel open because it is a matter of security and safety for our pilots,” - more code language, reflecting US intentions to pressure Putin to abandon his righteous mission, a worthless effort with no chance of succeeding.

Russia faces a potential serious homeland terrorist threat. A same day article discussed US involvement in recruiting and training ISIS elements in Afghanistan - intending to infest Central Asia with their fighters, like now in Syria and Iraq.

Putin’s involvement in Syria with perhaps Iraq to follow aims to deliver a death blow to its regional presence - perhaps targeting its Central Asian elements to follow, his objective to keep ISIS and related groups from infesting Russia. 

He’s committed to a vital mission. No amount of US pressure or threats will deter him. The stakes are too high.

NATO defense ministers are meeting in Brussels on Thursday, discussing how to respond to Russia upsetting their plans, unsure what to do, facing a real challenge for the first time.

Maybe they’ll order more troop deployments to Eastern Europe and hold larger-scale military exercises. “NATO is ready and able to defend all allies against all threats,” Jens Stoltenberg blustered.

Defense News reported US Navy Capt. Jeff Davis saying so-called “coalition” aircraft were rerouted to avoid close encounters with Russian planes - to keep a safe separation distance.

The Washington Post said Russia’s intervention “fundamentally chang(ed)” the dynamic in Syria. The Wall Street Journal bashed Putin, claiming he’s “tak(ing) a page from his Ukraine playbook (and) keeping the West guessing about his plans.”

The New York Times featured the Big Lie about Putin targeting (nonexistent) moderate anti-Assad elements, not ISIS, and propping up Assad.

Reliable Sputnik News quoted Syria’s ambassador to Russia, Riad Haddad, saying in one week, Russian aircraft destroyed “about 40 percent” of ISIS’ infrastructure, along with killing “a lot of terrorists.”

Many are retreating in disarray. Writing for Sputnik News, Paul Craig Roberts quoted Putin, saying: “We can no longer tolerate the state of affairs in the world,” - sounding very much like he’s saying the days of Washington pushing everyone around are over. He drew a red line not to be crossed. 

Enough is enough so he’s acting, mainly to preserve and protect Russian sovereignty, as well as the safety and welfare of its people. 

That’s what leaders are elected to do - not wage endless wars of aggression along with enforcing ruthless state terror worldwide. Putin asked Washington: “Do you realize what you have done?”

Roberts said his intervention in Syria (with perhaps Iraq and Central Asia to follow) may have “launched a revolution that will overthrow the world’s subservience to Washington.”

US officials “rel(y) on (an) arsenal of lies,” supported by presstitute “disinformation.” A nation reflecting pure evil portrays itself as exceptional - ignoring rule of law principles, deploring peace, attacking one nation after another, enforcing police state harshness at home, and handing America’s wealth to Wall Street crooks, other corporate favorites and billionaires.

“The breakup of the Empire is on the horizon,” said Roberts. Putin’s righteous mission may have hastened it.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

Visit his blog site at 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

Russia and Syria on the Offensive Against ISIS

Russia and Syria on the Offensive Against ISIS

by Stephen Lendman

Russian air power together with Syrian ground forces constitute a potential death blow to Washington’s anti-Assad campaign - for the first time challenging it effectively, why US officials are flummoxed about what to do next.

Counterattacking with propaganda won’t work - a worthless exercise doing nothing to constrain Putin’s righteous mission, displaying Russia’s formidable military might at the same time, very much noticed in Washington.

On the one hand, Putin wants terrorism defeated and Syrians alone deciding who’ll lead them. On the other, he wants ISIS and other terrorist threats prevented from spreading, especially to Russia’s homeland, a scheme no doubt Washington intends, targeting China and Iran as well.

Syria’s military is rejuvenated. Russian air power raised its spirit. It’s on the move. The Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) headlined “Russian and Syrian Airstrikes Continue, More Casualties and Losses Among Terrorist Organizations’ Ranks,” saying:

“(A)rmy units (are) striking hard on terrorists’ positions,” inflicting heavy losses, destroying “their heavy armaments and equipment…”

Ongoing air and/or grounds operations are widespread -  targeting the Damascus countryside, Sweida, Daraa, Quneitra, Homs, Hama, Raqaa, Hasaka, the Aleppo countryside, Idlib and other areas.

On Thursday, Syrian Army and Air Force Chief of General Staff Gen. Ali Abdullah Ayoud issued a statement, saying:

“Today the Syrian armed forces started a wide-scale attack, aiming at uprooting terrorists’ gatherings and liberating the areas and towns which have been suffering (from) the woes and crimes of terrorism.”

Russian air power made the current offensive possible. Already, it’s inflicted significant damage to ISIS’ capability. Air and ground operations killed hundreds of terrorists. Many other fled in panic - many to residential areas Russia won’t bomb, others leaving Syria.

Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad said Moscow “produced significant results in several days that greatly surpass those achieved by the (so-called) US-led) coalition in over a year” - an operation hitting infrastructure targets, not ISIS or other terrorists.

Syria’s ambassador to Russia, Riad Haddad, said “strikes carried out by Russia’s aerospace forces against the IS positions in Syria are precise and efficient. Russia helps the Syrian army to conduct ground operations.”

“Coordination is carried out through the information center in Baghdad. However, coordination is also underway with participation of all general of the Syrian army. This is done so that precise airstrikes are delivered at the positions of the Islamic State terrorist organization.”

The entire free world supports Putin’s righteous mission. US officials ludicrously claiming he made a strategic blunder, encouraging the spread of terrorism reveals Washington’s tenuous position, now on the back foot for the first time in recent memory.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg looked foolish saying “(i)n Syria, we have seen a troubling escalation of Russian military activities” code language for Putin beating Obama’s dirty game.

State Department spokesman Admiral John Kirby repeated the Big Lie, claiming Russia’s intervention “exacerbated the conflict…”

Media reports said Obama officials are discussing a no-fly zone as a possible option - illegal without Security Council authorization Russia won’t permit, nor will it deter its operations if unilaterally implemented.

Would US warplanes dare confront Russia’s belligerently? Don’t bet on it. They might come out second best. Kirby lied saying Russian air strikes target “opposition groups,” not ISIS.

“Greater than 90% of the strikes that we’ve seen them take to date have not been against ISIL or Al-Qaeda-affiliated terrorists.”

“They’ve been largely against opposition groups that want a better future for Syria and don’t want to see the Assad regime stay in power.”

Fact: All “opposition groups” are terrorists. No so-called “moderates” exist.

Fact: US bombing targets Syrian infrastructure, supporting, not attacking ISIS and other takfiri terrorists. 

They’re US creations - death squad tactics, a strategy originating with Operation Phoenix in Vietnam in the 1960s and early 70s.

Fact: America’s war on terrorism is a  war OF terrorism at home and abroad. The goal: destroying fundamental freedoms. Replacing them with tyranny - continuing until Washington achieves unchallenged world dominance, a lunatic scheme threatening world peace.

Russia’s intervention is the most important development since Obama launched proxy war in March 2011. It has the potential to greatly impede Washington’s imperial Middle East agenda, maybe defeat it altogether. 

Putin’s mission has US officials frantic, scrambling for a Plan B, unsure how to handle a real challenger, not like walkover countries Washington attacks. Bullies shun fair fights. They want things all their way.

A sort of St. George and the Dragon scenario may be developing. Imagine the good guy slaying the monster, freeing the world from its terror. Putin’s intervention deserves universal support.

A Final Comment

RT International reported US, UK, Arab and Pakistani instructors working with ISIS elements in Afghanistan - planning to expand terrorism to Central Asia, especially Russia, part of Washington’s longstanding destabilization agenda. 

According to Putin’s special representative for Afghanistan, Zamir Kabulov, “(t)here are several camps operated by (ISIS in Afghanistan) that train people from Central Asia and some regions of Russia. They speak Russian there.”

Russian intelligence estimates around 3,500 militants in Afghanistan, pledging allegiance to ISIS - and the number is rising, Kabulov explained.

He called “(t)he rise of (this terrorist group) in Afghanistan a high priority threat” - a key reason for Putin’s involvement in Syria. Perhaps Iraq is next, if Baghdad requests help.

Russian Armed Forces Chief of General Staff Gen. Valery Gerasimov estimates around 50,000 fighters in Afghanistan belonging to over 4,000 militant groups - Taliban elements by far the strongest with around 40,000 fighters. 

ISIS elements are increasingly challenging them, Gerasimov said. They see Afghanistan as a rich recruiting ground, a foothold for expanding into Central Asia, according to Russia’s Main Intelligence Directorate chief Col. Gen. Igor Sergun.

He sees US-supported ISIS exploiting the worsening  situation in Afghanistan to strengthen its position,” posing a real threat to Russia’s security.

“We estimate that ISIL gets new troops by bribing field commanders of Taliban, the Islamic movement of Uzbekistan and other radical religious organizations operating on Afghan territory,” Sergun explained. 

Defeating ISIS and other terrorist groups in Syria and Iraq takes on greater importance.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

Visit his blog site at 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

Obama Approved Israeli West Bank Violence

Obama Approved Israeli West Bank Violence

by Stephen Lendman

Ongoing Israeli instigated violence in the West Bank and East Jerusalem (along with intermittent Gaza bombings and cross-border incursions) is part of its longstanding ethnic cleansing policy. The objective: maximum Jews and minimum Arabs, remaining ones confined to isolated ghettoized bantustans on worthless scrubland.

Nothing this extreme would be happening without US approval. Make no mistake. Washington fully supports it - daily attacks on defenseless Palestinians, reminiscent of Nazi Germany’s Kristallnacht, extreme viciousness, terrorizing an entire population, committing cold-blooded murder and mayhem.

What began in late July with settlers killing three Dawabsha family members by immolation, followed by violent Israeli rampaging through the Al-Aqsa Mosque shifted to intensified state terror throughout the West Bank and East Jerusalem, turning the entire territory into a battleground while Mahmoud Abbas and other PA officials do nothing to help defenseless Palestinians they’re sworn to serve and protect. Their inaction reflects complicity, collaboration with Israeli viciousness.

Where is world outrage? Why are Western and most regional leaders virtually silent in the face of ongoing Israeli atrocities? 

They include murdering young children threatening no one, breaking into Palestinian homes pre-dawn, terrorizing families, traumatizing children, damaging property, arresting innocent people, killing and brutalizing at will - a devastating reign of terror on an entire population.

Israel is run by Arab-hating fascists, Zionist extremists and religious fundamentalist zealots - a police state rejecting rule of law principles, enforcing apartheid worse than South Africa’s version, allowed to get away with it because Washington approves.

One rogue state supports another, partnering in each other’s high crimes, genocide their most notable feature along with daily state terror.

Israel is no democracy. It’s a machine for the manufacture of human rights abuses, Joel Kovel explains. Its Zionist ideology is a cancer harming Jews and non-Jews alike - a scourge on humanity.

More than ever, global BDS activism is needed. The most effective way to confront Israeli ruthlessness is economic - hitting it in the pocketbook where it hurts most, convincing growing numbers of people worldwide to lend support. 

Israel considers BDS a strategic threat. It’s a significant force to be reckoned with. Each time a company or institution divests, Israel’s economy takes another body blow.

Palestinians are buying fewer Israeli products, choosing ones from other countries more often. The whole world needs to follow their example. Shun everything made in Israel, especially illegal settlement products.

The Palestinian BDS National Committee (BNC) coordinates Palestinian boycott campaigns, its General Coordinator Mahmoud Nawajaa, saying:

Declining Palestinian purchases of Israeli products “indicate that the grassroots boycott campaigns against Israel that have taken off across Palestine in recent years are already costing the Israeli economy hundreds of millions of dollars and could become an even more important factor in the near future.”

“This adds to the growing economic and political isolation that Israel’s regime of occupation, settler-colonialism and apartheid is starting to face internationally as a result of the fast-growing impact of the BDS movement.”

In 2014, direct foreign investment in Israel declined by 46%, BDS effectiveness a contributing factor. In September, French company Viola divested entirely from Israel, costing its economy billions of dollars.

Nawajaa cites the urgency of BDS activism, needed more than ever, saying:

“The recent upsurge in popular resistance by Palestinians is a response to the way in which this far-right Israeli government has done everything possible to intensify the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, the desecration of our holy sites, the collective punishment of our people in Gaza, the construction of colonial settlements, and the adoption of more apartheid laws.”

“As a typical settler-colonial regime, Israel is viciously attacking and repressing popular Palestinian resistance with military violence, including indiscriminate use of force against Palestinian civilians, which constitutes war crimes.”

“Israel is only able to attack Palestinians with impunity and maintain its decades-old regime of settler colonialism and apartheid because of direct complicity of governments and their failure to ensure that Israel complies with international law.”

“Governments should meet their legal obligations to hold Israel accountable for its indiscriminate use of force against Palestinians, including by imposing an immediate two-way military embargo on Israel and cutting ties with Israeli academic institutions that are deeply involved in military research.”

“Grassroots BDS pressure on Israel will continue to grow rapidly and become even more widely supported both in Palestine and internationally.”

It bears repeating. The best way to combat Israeli viciousness is economic, making its economy scream, squeezing until it hurts.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

Visit his blog site at 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Russia's Impressive First Week of REAL War on Terror

Russia’s Impressive First Week of REAL War on Terror

by Stephen Lendman

In over a year of Washington’s phony war on ISIS, they’re stronger with more territory than when US bombing began - targeting Syrian and Iraqi infrastructure, not terrorist forces or facilities. 

On September 30, things changed markedly. Washington wants no interference in its policies. Putin’s intervention leveled the playing field.

ISIS forces are panicking, retreating, hiding in residential areas and mosques, using area residents as human shields - knowing Russia won’t attack noncombatants or civilian infrastructure, Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov explained, citing video evidence.

Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said terrorists may bomb mosques or other civilian targets, blaming Russia for their crimes, eagerly reported by Western media - spreading Big Lies their specialty, governments they represent doing the same thing.

War strategy includes winning heart and minds, no matter how deceptively. Effective propaganda works this way, especially with proliferators like The New York Times and US cable TV channels, blasting out Big Lies round-the-clock - in print, on air and online.

Antonov said Russia uses information from reconnaissance, satellites, and Syrian military intelligence before choosing targets - checking and rechecking to be “100% sure” the right ones are struck, so far with impressive results, Washington getting a closeup view of Moscow’s formidable military strength.

On October 7, Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said 112 ISIS targets were struck since September 30. “The intensity of strikes is growing,” he explained. 

“Many targets were discovered in the past two days, command posts, ammunition and military hardware depots, militant training camps. All the targets were destroyed, no civilian facilities were damaged” - including “19 command posts, 12 ammunition caches, 71 military hardware pieces and six explosive device making facilities.”

On Wednesday morning, 23 aircraft struck terrorist positions. Russia’s navy is involved. Four warships fired 26 cruise missiles from Caspian Sea positions, 1,500 km away, hitting 11 targets with pinpoint accuracy, destroying them, harming no civilians, an impressive display of military might, perhaps enough to give Pentagon commanders pause on challenging Russia head-to-head, madness if dared.

Flight paths passed through Iraqi and Iranian airspace with their permission, all three countries working cooperatively with Syria against ISIS and other takfiri terrorists.

Putin praised initial results so far. He’s coordinating Moscow’s efforts with Damascus, Iran and Iraq - partnered against terrorism, waging real war to defeat it, challenging Washington’s phony war, an agenda for conquest, domination and exploitation.

Washington and Moscow have polar opposite objectives. Putin wants peace and stability throughout the region. He wants terrorism defeated. 

Obama wants endless wars and instability, using ISIS and other takfiri terrorists to achieve his aims. A classic good v. evil struggle is unfolding. 

This one has a long way to go with no way to predict the outcome. Stay hopeful. Maybe this time the good guys will win. Washington is long overdue a stiff comeuppance.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

Visit his blog site at 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

Assad's Struggle Against US Imperialism

Assad’s Struggle Against US Imperialism

by Stephen Lendman

The late Syria expert Patrick Seale once said Assad’s popularity stems from his “standing up to Israel and its American backer, and for” providing security and stability in a troubled region.

Obama’s war changed things. Early in the conflict, Seale said “Assad may be on the ropes, but he is far from finished.”

The longer conflicts continues, the greater his popularity. Western leaders and media demeaned his landslide June 2014 reelection - a process independent international monitors judged open, free and fair, the first ever for the nation’s top job.

Syrians want no one else leading them. When he shows up in areas liberated from terrorist elements, he’s mobbed by adoring supporters. 

He’s comfortable greeting them. He’s no despot like most other Middle East/North African leaders. Demeaning Western reports mischaracterize perhaps the region’s most popular Arab head of state for good reason.

Before Obama launched proxy war in March 2011, he enjoyed widespread popular support in most sectors of society. He drove his own car at times, walked openly in Damascus with minimum visible security - greeted warmly by adoring admirers.

He’s a Damascus and London trained certified ophthalmologist - quiet, reserved, medicine his first love. Duty got him into politics. Days after his father Hafez’s June 2000 death, Syria’s parliament voted to lower the minimum age for presidential eligibility from 40 to 34, then chose him for a seven-year head of state term, a role intended for his older brother Bassel until his 1994 auto accident death.

He ran unopposed in a public referendum, became Ba’ath party leader, and Syria’s military commander-in-chief - multiple roles he never imagined or sought growing up.

As president, he promised and delivered constitutional reform, overwhelmingly approved by national referendum - including 14 new articles and 37 others amended, responding to popular sentiment.

Political pluralism was established for the first time. So were presidential term limits and press freedom. Assad gave Syrians democratic rights, shaming America’s sham system.

Why is he so vilified by Western governments and media? Why when Syria pre-March 2011 was a far more open society than other Arab states run by repressive monarchs, despotic generals or other tyrants.

The answer is simple. Washington doesn’t care if nations are run by good or bad guys - as long as they observe US rules. Refuse, maintain sovereign independence, and get targeted for regime change.

Every nation America attacked post-WW II - from North Korea to Vietnam to Panama to Afghanistan to Libya and Middle East countries, as well as numerous leaders eliminated by coups and assassinations - was independent, not subservient to US policy.

That’s why they were attacked - to replace their governments with pro-Western puppet regimes, mostly but not always successfully.

Washington wants its way imposed on all governments worldwide. Along with Israel, Britain and France, it dominated Middle East policy for decades.

The phony Arab spring was manufactured in Washington, manipulated to turn out its way, not for democratic change, a verboten notion for US policymakers.

Assad isn’t going anywhere. It’s a whole new ballgame with Russia’s intervention, maybe in Iraq to follow if Baghdad requests help. 

For the first time since Soviet Russia’s 1991 dissolution, America’s imperial project is being challenged. Obama’s only response so far is propaganda war.

It’s ineffective in deterring Putin’s war on terror - wanting it defeated abroad, prevented from arriving in Russia. He took the initiative, maybe catching Washington off-guard. He’s got the upper hand. The Arab street supports him. So does the entire free world.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

Visit his blog site at 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

Irresponsible NYT Putin Bashing

Irresponsible NYT Putin Bashing

by Stephen Lendman

The Times is an establishment publication - a longstanding mouthpiece for wealth, power and privilege, militantly anti-Russian. All the news it calls fit to print isn’t fit to read!

Its latest anti-Putin editorial salvo headlined “Mr. Putin’s Motives in Syria,” falsely accusing him of “sending ‘volunteer’ ground forces into Syria” - repeating the same Big Lie about nonexistent “Russian aggression” in Ukraine.”

Spuriously claiming he’s bombing nonexistent “Syrian rebels,” so-called moderates no one can find, “phantoms” according to Sergey Lavrov, not ISIS and other terrorist groups.

Times editors viciously attacked Putin’s righteous campaign against terrorism, polar opposite US policy, using imported death squads as proxy foot soldiers, trained by CIA operatives and Pentagon special forces to reign terror where they’re deployed.

A litany of Times editorial lies followed. Putin is sending “young Russians…to face mortal danger.” His “very dangerous gamble” may “make matters far more complex.”

He’s “(p)ropping up a flailing ally” - demeaning Assad’s responsible efforts to rid Syria of the scourge of terrorism, outrageously blaming him for Obama’s war, naked aggression by any standard, turning truth on its head saying he “killed hundreds of thousands of Syrians, dr(ove) millions from their homes and destroyed vast stretches of the country.” 

Putin’s “flex(ing) his muscles (again) before a Russian public…But he may not be strutting for long.” If he was “eager for peace, he could have…pressure(d) Assad” to step down.

“Instead, he supported (his) brutal reprisals against civilians and the opposition…” Putin is “making a grandstand play.”

This is what passes for so-called Times journalism and opinion - pure rubbish, yellow journalism at its worst, ignoring vital hard truths, featuring willful misinformation and Big Lies.

The so-called “newspaper of record” is a national disgrace, a lying machine, waging war on truth and full disclosure.

Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov debunked the Big Lie about Russia troops in Syria masquerading as “volunteers,” saying “such organizations exist and act independently.” 

They have nothing to do with Kremlin policy. Putin “has not stated his attitude on this issue. He is mainly concentrating on those people who fall a victim to the influence of Islamic State, who go there, who are concentrated there and get into the hands of extremist or terrorist organizations, and who later…(return home) morally crippled.”

A previous article suggested Putin might expand his anti-terrorism campaign to Iraq if Baghdad requests help. On October 7, the Wall Street Journal headlined “Iraqi Shiite Politicians Call for Russian Airstrikes on Islamic State,” saying:

They’re “largely united in…prais(ing) Moscow’s intervention and (want) “Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to invite Russia to join the battle.”

He said he welcomes Russian help as long as it’s coordinated with Washington. Iraq, Russia, Iran and Syria already have an intelligence sharing operation headquartered in Baghdad.

Russian upper house Federation Council Speaker Valentina Matviyenko said:

“In the case of an appeal by the Iraqi leadership to Russian Federation, the country’s leadership will consider the political and military expediency of our air force’s participation in an air operation. No appeal yet has been made.”

Iraq and Syria share a long porous 605 km border. ISIS elements move freely across it in either direction. Degrading and defeating them in Syria won’t eliminate them as long as safe haven in Iraq exists.

On October 7, RT International said “Iraq may soon request Russian airstrikes against ISIS on its soil,” citing its parliament defense panel head Hakim al-Zamili.

Baghdad may request Russian help in days or weeks, he said - challenging Washington’s regional imperial project more than already if Moscow expands its war on terror cross-border.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

Visit his blog site at 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

Israel: A Rogue Regime Fostering Violence, Racist Hate and Brutality

Israel: A Rogue Regime Fostering Violence, Racist Hate and Brutality

by Stephen Lendman

Israeli viciousness has Palestine on the brink of exploding. State-instigated violence continues daily. An entire population is being ruthlessly terrorized.

Israeli security forces murdered four Palestinians in the past week, injured hundreds more, 129 in the last 24 hours alone, assaulted journalists, and attacked Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) medical staff 27 times since the latest violence erupted - injuring 17 medical workers, damaging 10 ambulances.

Washington is directly complicit, providing Israel with billions of dollars annually, the latest weapons and technology and political support for its high crimes.

Israeli rules of engagement include live fire against defenseless Palestinian protesters, including young children. Expect many more deaths and injuries ahead.

An Israeli sniper fatally shot 13-year-old Abdul-Rahman Obeidallah, threatening no one, walking home from school still in uniform, wearing his backpack. He was murdered by indiscriminate sniper fire.

Popular Struggle Coordination Committee head Munther Amira said Israel assassinated Obeidallah. “We, Palestinians will continue struggling against this occupation, and we are going to take the Israeli leaders to the International Criminal Court (ICC) as they give direct orders for their soldiers to kill (children like) Abdul-Rahman.”

Family homes of Palestinian children accused of stone-throwing are being demolished, including two Jabal al-Mukaber village ones yesterday - a vicious crime against humanity, a Fourth Geneva grave breach war crime, part of longstanding Israeli collective punishment, a flagrant international law violation.

Palestine is under siege. A state of war exists. Israeli security forces violently attacked peaceful Palestinians in Jaffa overnight - beating them with clubs and batons.

Live fire was used against Palestinian protesters in Nablus, Ramallah, Hebron, Jenin, Bethlehem, East Jerusalem and elsewhere throughout the West Bank. Scores of injuries were reported, some serious, Palestinians victimized by Israeli brutality.

PRCS emergency unit head Mahmoud Sa’adi said soldiers fired live rounds, rubber bullets and tear gas against peaceful protesters. Medical personnel and journalists were attacked.

Dozens of Palestinians were arrested, including young children. Israeli police attacked Fadi Allon’s funeral procession, a 19-year-old youth murdered by security forces in Jerusalem’s Old City.

Soldiers rampaged through Palestinian communities, breaking into homes, ransacking them, traumatizing children, making arrests, including 14-year-old disabled Hassan al-Rajbi.

In the last 24 hours alone, at least eight Palestinians were wounded by live fire, scores of others from rubber bullets, tear gas and beatings.

Mahmoud Abbas has done nothing to protect the security of Palestinians he’s sworn to serve, virtually silent until Tuesday, only saying he wants to avoid escalated violence with Israel - a shocking indictment of his indifference to Palestinian rights, safety and welfare.

In the past week, over 600 Palestinians were injured, 49 wounded by live fire, four assassinated.

Longstanding Israeli viciousness bears full responsibility for ongoing violence. Palestinian victims take only so much before exploding - their stones and empty bottles no match against heavily armed security forces, brutalizing them with terror weapons, including live fire intended to kill, injure or maim.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

Visit his blog site at 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 

Tuesday, October 06, 2015

Lunatics in Washington Want Direct Confrontation with Russia

Lunatics in Washington Want Direct Confrontation with Russia

by Stephen Lendman

Russia’s sovereign independence sticks in Washington’s craw, longterm US policy determined to replace it with governance it controls - even at the risk of WW III.

Putin’s most responsible policies are bashed, notably his forthright efforts to end conflicts in Ukraine and Syria diplomatically - now his real war on terrorism, polar opposite Washington’s phony one, a pretext for ravaging one country after another.

Irresponsible propaganda war against him rages. Deputy State Department spokesman Mark Toner lied saying the Obama administration “welcome(s) a constructive role for Russia if it takes the fight to ISIS” - precisely what it’s doing as Toner knows.

Instead of acknowledging and praising its effort, he lied saying “we’ve not seen that that’s the case. We’ve seen no indication that they’re actually hitting ISIL targets.”

He persists in the Big Lie about Moscow targeting nonexistent anti-Assad moderates. Sergey Lavrov explained clearly what Russia has been doing for the past week, saying if it walks and talks and squawks like a terrorist, it’s a terrorist vital to eliminate - to keep its danger from spreading.

Lunatics like presidential aspirant Carly Fiorina wants Washington enforcing a no-fly zone in Syria - even if it means shooting down Russian aircraft, claiming:

“Russian jets have been basically conducting dangerous and unpredictable maneuvers around our (sic) water and our (sic) borders and our (sic) territory.”

Does she means planet earth, its oceans, airspace and outer space? Does she consider Russian territory “ours?”

Would anyone want this woman’s finger on the nuclear trigger? Would you trust her with safeguarding life on earth? Would we avoid WW III with her in the White House?

Marco Rubio supports establishing so-called safe and no-fly zones in Syria - enforcing them “against anyone who would dare intrude on” them, including Russia. He’s willing to risk nuclear war to enforce US policy.

Last May, Ben Carson said he would not rule out military confrontation with Russia. “I would do whatever is necessary,” he said.

Earlier, Ted Cruz said he’d ramp up tensions with Russia and China if he became America’s commander-in-chief - risking nuclear war to pursue America’s hegemonic agenda.

All Republican and Democrat candidates support endless US wars of aggression. All might risk direct confrontation with Russia. Don’t let Trump’s rhetoric fool you, saying “(l)et Russia fight ISIS.”

Separately, he calls himself “the most militaristic” presidential aspirant. Hillary Clinton supports establishing safe and no-fly zones in Syria. 

Bernie Sanders is militantly anti-Russian. “The entire world has got to stand up to Putin,” he blustered. Would he risk direct confrontation, possible nuclear war?

In a Financial Times op-ed, former Carter administration national security advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski irresponsibly said Russia “launched air attacks at Syrian elements that are sponsored, trained and equipped by the Americans, inflicting damage and causing casualties.” 

“At best, it was a display of Russian military incompetence; at worst, evidence of a dangerous desire to highlight American political impotence.”

Washington has “only one real option,” he claimed, to protect its regional interests - “to convey to Moscow the demand that it cease and desist from military actions that directly affect American assets.”

He stopped short of explaining they’re ISIS and other imported terrorists, not moderate Syrian opponents, one of many Big Lies about Obama’s war, systematically destroying another country. Putin wants Syria saved. He wants the scourge of terrorism eliminated.

Instead of applauding his righteous efforts, Brzezinski urged “prompt US retaliation.” Is he suggesting possible nuclear war? 

He’s one of many neocon lunatics infesting Washington. His call for “strategic boldness” sounds like a declaration of war, madness at a time cools heads are desperately needed.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

Visit his blog site at 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs.