Saturday, 2 January 2016
Saudi Arabia says 47 executed including Shia cleric Sheikh Nimr
Saudi Arabia executed 47 people on Saturday for “terrorism”, including the prominent Shia Muslim cleric Nimr al-Nimrits, Interior Ministry said in a statement.
Nimr Baqr al-Nimr, commonly referred to as Sheikh Nimr was an independent Shia Sheikh in al-Awamiyah, Eastern Province, Saudi Arabia.
He is popular among youth and critical of the Saudi Arabian government during the 2011–2012 Saudi Arabian protests.
Iran has warned that executing Nimr “would cost Saudi Arabia dearly”.
The brother of Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr who was executed by Saudi Arabia on Saturday, stressed that the move is a losing message to the region that Riyadh is still “powerful”.
Commenting on the execution of the prominent religious figure, Mohammad al-Nimr stressed that the pro-democracy movement in the Kingdom’s east will persist.
“Wrong, misled, and mistaken those who think that the killing will keep us from our rightful demands,” Mohammad al-Nimr tweeted shortly after the media reported the execution of Sheikh Nimr along with other 46 people.
“It’s a losing message to regional foes that Riyadh is still powerful,” Mohammad al-Nimr said on the execution of his brother.
The execution is also seen as a message to Saudis that if you call for your rights, “you will be met by the wanton sword of Jahiliyya (ignorance),” Sheikh Nimr’s brother said.
“Someday, the sectarianism will be dispelled and we will be in a better condition,” Mohammad al-Nimr tweeted.
Saudi authorities announced on Saturday it had executed Sheikh Nimr along with 46 others.
Sheikh Nimr was a vocal supporter of the mass pro-democracy protests against Riyadh, which erupted in Eastern Province in 2011, where a Shia majority has long complained of marginalization.
Source: Al-Manar Website
|02-01-2016 – 12:46 Last updated 02-01-2016 – 13:0|
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Friday, 1 January 2016
Friday January 01, 2016 15:32
A Palestinian TV cameraman was injured, and many protesters suffered the effects of tear gas inhalation, Friday, after dozens of Israeli soldiers attacked the weekly nonviolent protest against the Wall and colonies, in Kafr Qaddoum town, near the northern West Bank city of Qalqilia.
The Popular Committee in Kafr Qaddoum said this week's protests also marked the 51st anniversary of the establishment of Fateh movement, and commemorated the third anniversary of the death of Sheikh Sa'id Jasser, who died of severe effects of tear gas inhalation.
Morad Eshteiwy, coordinator of the Popular Committee in Kafr Qaddoum, said dozens of soldiers, accompanied by an armored bulldozer, invaded the village and fired live rounds, rubber-coated steel bullets and gas bombs.
|Soldiers Attack The Weekly Protest In Bil’in|
Eshteiwy added that Palestinian cameraman Enaal al-Jada' was shot with a rubber-coated steel bullet in his leg, and received the required treatment by Red Crescent medics. Many Palestinians also suffered the effects of tear gas inhalation.
The soldiers surrounded Kafr Qaddoum since early morning hours, and tried to hide between trees and various areas, but the protesters managed to uncover the ambush attempts, before clashing with the soldiers.
Recent "Official Washington" headlines:
- U.S. to Putin: Welcome to the ISIS ‘Quagmire’ - Sep 29
- Obama: Russia heading for 'quagmire' in Syria - Oct 2
- Russia's ‘quagmire’ destroys all hope of defeating ISIS - Oct 16
- Russians support airstrikes in Syria, despite haunting memories of quagmire in Afghanistan - Oct 20
- Russia risks Syrian quagmire -U.S. deputy secretary of state - Oct 31
- The Syrian quagmire - Nov 3
- Putin's Quagmire in Syria Proves Obama Prescient - Dec 9
- Putin's Middle East Misadventures - Dec 11
- Is Syria Already A Quagmire For Putin? - Dec 12
The above was all nonsense and propaganda. It represented the typical self delusion of the Washington establishment. The Russian government and military knew exactly what they were doing. After some 100 days of Russian military support for the Syrian government the results are coming in. They look well. The Islamic State lost most of its oil income and is reduced in its capabilities. The Syrian army and its allies are progressing against they various enemies on several fronts. The costs of Russia's expedition is relatively small.
This reality is now setting in.
Three months into his military intervention in Syria, Russian President Vladimir Putin has achieved his central goal of stabilizing the Assad government and, with the costs relatively low, could sustain military operations at this level for years, U.S. officials and military analysts say.
"I think it's indisputable that the Assad regime, with Russian military support, is probably in a safer position than it was," said a senior administration official, who requested anonymity. Five other U.S. officials interviewed by Reuters concurred with the view that the Russian mission has been mostly successful so far and is facing relatively low costs.The U.S. officials stressed that Putin could face serious problems the longer his involvement in the more than four-year-old civil war drags on.
Yet since its campaign began on Sept. 30, Russia has suffered minimal casualties and, despite domestic fiscal woes, is handily covering the operation's cost, which analysts estimate at $1-2 billion a year. The war is being funded from Russia's regular annual defense budget of about $54 billion, a U.S. intelligence official said.
With the Russian help time is now in favor of the Syrian government's position. As longer it takes to get to some negotiated end-state with the various groups supported from the outside, the less power on the ground and the less say in the outcome will those groups and their sponsors have. The Islamic State and several other Salafi groups like Ahrar al Sham will shrink back into underground terrorist forces. These will be able to continue random attacks but will not be able to hold ground. Unfortunately incidents like today's triple suicide bombing in Homs, which killed some 50 civilians, will continue to occur for some time. The biggest challenge will be the defeat of al-Qaeda in Syria under the name Jabhat al-Nusra.
That group has pushed roots into the local ground and population and will be the hardest to eradicate. It will have to be isolated from its sponsors and all resupply before it can be defeated. Local intelligence will have to penetrate the group to go after its leadership.
Russia has not yet brought its full power to bear in Syria. It waits until a more complete intelligence picture has formed to pursue smaller and smaller opposition units. This may take some additional month. The big government offense against its enemies in Idleb province and city is also still in preparation. Unless some unforeseen exterior event happens it will be the major move over the next six month.
Posted by b on December 28, 2015 at 11:49 AM | Permalink
Thursday, 31 December 2015
DECEMBER 29, 2015
By Brandon Turbeville
It appears that the week of Christmas in 2015 is quite the low moment for Turkey’s public relations department. In addition to be revealed as one of the top purchasers of ISIS oil by many in the alternative media, the Russian government, and a number of other sources, Erdogan’s own son has been pointed out as one of the principal smugglers and the Turkish President’s own daughter as the Florence Nightingale of the caliphate. If that wasn’t bad enough, an independent report by aNorwegian oil consulting firm also confirmed that much of the ISIS oil was being shipped directly to Turkey. A Turkish party member even revealed that the terrorists who committed the chemical weapons attack in Ghouta most likely received their chemical weapons from Turkey and committed the atrocity with foreknowledge and assistance from Turkish intelligence.
Yet the hits to the Turkish government’s public relations just keep on coming, the latest of which involves statements coming from an ISIS member who was recently captured by Kurdish troops in Syria, who has revealed that not only is Turkey a primary buyer of ISIS oil but that ISIS fighters were being trained both in and by Turkey itself to be deployed into Syria. The captured fighter also revealed that the ISIS fighters on the ground do not take the American airstrikes seriously, viewing them as nothing more than show.
Mahmut Ghazi Tatar, the member of Daesh captured by the Syrian Kurds, gave an interview to Sputnik Turkiye about his experiences in joining the terrorist organization. Tatar, who is 24 years old, allegedly joined Daesh after being influenced by a friend who was already a member. Tatar joined Daesh along with 27 other Turks.Tatar relates his path from Turkey to Syria by stating:
After crossing border we were moved to a training camp 5 km from the border. We received military training and attended religious classes. Before the start of training, each of us was asked whether we want to be martyrs. I refused. This question is asked of all new recruits. Those who agree, within 6 months receive special religious training. Since I refused, my education and training lasted 70 days. We learned by the Turkish books. During the training, a few people from Turkey came to check on us. They did not have beards and they were not members of Daesh.
After they received training, the 28 men were moved to Tal Abyad, where they were kept secret and allowed no contact with their families. Tatar states that his group received warning that the Kurds had learned of their whereabouts and had planned to storm the house in which they were staying. Thus, Tatar fled from Tal Abyad along with 12 other members. The men made it to a nearby village but were captured after Tatar attempted to make a run for it.
Speaking about the oil being sold by ISIS to supposedly “unknown” and shadowy entities in the Middle East, Tatar stated what many in the alternative media have known for some time – that the principal purchaser of ISIS oil was in fact Turkey, a NATO country.
The oil tankers that were sent every day to Turkey had crude oil, fuel oil and gasoline. The main source of income for Daesh is oil trade and oil inventories will last them a long time.Tatar stated that neither he nor his comrades attached “particular importance to the US bombings. They believed that it was done as a pretense.”
Abu Talha [Daesh commander] also said that the group earns a lot of money in trade with Turkey. He also said that the oil is sold through the mediation of a number of businessmen and merchants, but did not give names. Daesh also receives many products from Turkey and other Arab countries.
Tatar mentioned that, at one point, a member of his group asked their commander, Abu Talha, why Daesh did not attack Israel. Talha’s response was “First we need to break down a small wall and then destroy the large one.”
Tatar described most ISIS recruits as coming from Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Yemen, Qatar, Lebanon, and Egypt and that they entered Syria from the Turkish border, a very easy thing to do. European and American fighters, according to Tatar, follow the same route.
Tatar also forebodingly stated that, “The commanders told us that they were going to commit a terrorist act that would exceed the scale of the September 11 attacks on the US.”
While Tatar revealed nothing that was not already widely known amongst geopolitical researchers, his information does confirm what many have been saying all along regarding the purchase of ISIS oil – that NATO and Turkey in particular is the largestconsumer of this oil and, thus, is contributing to the financial support of ISIS (among several other methods of funding). Tatar also confirms the nature of the American airstrikes against Daesh – the lack of actual bombing of terrorist targets – and the fact that Turkish assistance is essential to the funneling of terrorists into Syria.
Brandon Turbeville – article archive here – is the author of six books, Codex Alimentarius — The End of Health Freedom, 7 Real Conspiracies, Five Sense Solutions and Dispatches From a Dissident, volume 1 andvolume 2, The Road to Damascus: The Anglo-American Assault on Syria, and The Difference it Makes: 36 Reasons Why Hillary Clinton Should Never Be President. Turbeville has published over 500 articles dealing on a wide variety of subjects including health, economics, government corruption, and civil liberties. Brandon Turbeville’s podcast Truth on The Tracks can be found every Monday night 9 pm EST at UCYTV. He is available for radio and TV interviews. Please contact activistpost (at) gmail.com.
Global Research, December 30, 2015
A recently announced Saudi-led “anti-terror” coalition was met with great skepticism recently.
This is not because of doubts over Saudi Arabia’s sincerity alone, but because of the fact that much of the terrorism the “coalition” is allegedly to fight is an intentional creation of Saudi Arabian foreign policy to begin with.
CNN’s article, “Muslim nations form coalition to fight terror, call Islamic extremism ‘disease’,” claims:
Calling Islamic extremism a disease, Saudi Arabia has announced the formation of a coalition of 34 largely Muslim nations to fight terrorism.In reality, decades of documented evidence reveal that the Saudis are the primary conduit through which Western cash, weapons, support, and directives flow into mercenary armies of extremists, indoctrinated by Saudi Wahhabism – a politically-motivated perversion of Islam – and sent to execute joint Western-Saudi geopolitical ambitions in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region and beyond.
“This announcement comes from the Islamic world’s vigilance in fighting this disease so it can be a partner, as a group of countries, in the fight against this disease,” Saudi Deputy Crown Prince and Defense Minister Mohammed bin Salman said.
Asked whether the new coalition could include ground forces, Saudi Arabia’s top diplomat told reporters in Paris on Tuesday that “nothing is off the table.”
In fact, over the decades, one can see a direct relation to the increasing impotence of Western conventional forces and their ability to project power across the planet, and the rise of unconventional terrorist forces that reach into otherwise inaccessible regions in their stead.
|Image: The seats were still warm in Riyadh where representatives from Al Qaeda affiliates fighting in Syria sat, discussing with their Saudi sponsors future collaboration as Saudi Arabia announced its “anti-terror coalition.”|
This does more than the West’s feigned ignorance and surprise to explain why, after a year of allegedly battling the so-called “Islamic State” (ISIS, ISIL, or Daesh) in Syria, the United States made little progress and only after Russia’s recent intervention, has the terrorist organization’s existence been put in jeopardy.
The rise of ISIS, turns out to be the premeditated machinations of the West and its regional partners. A Department of Intelligence Agency (DIA) report drafted in 2012 (.pdf) admitted:
If the situation unravels there is the possibility of establishing a declared or undeclared Salafist principality in eastern Syria (Hasaka and Der Zor), and this is exactly what the supporting powers to the opposition want, in order to isolate the Syrian regime, which is considered the strategic depth of the Shia expansion (Iraq and Iran).To clarify just who these “supporting powers” were that sought the creation of a “Salafist” (Islamic) principality” (State), the DIA report explains:
The West, Gulf countries, and Turkey support the opposition; while Russia, China, and Iran support the regime.The DIA report makes it clear that Saudi Arabia’s “coalition” is the source of all terrorism, not the solution, and that there already exists a coalition sincerely committed to exterminating the scourge of militant extremism in the MENA region – Russia, China, Iran, and of course Syria itself.
A Facade to Hide Continued Terrorism Behind
Likely what Saudi Arabia is doing, is attempting to reboot a narrative that, as of late, is increasingly implicating it and many of the members of its “coalition” as the very source of global terrorism. Additionally, Saudi Arabia has become increasingly involved directly with military operations beyond its borders. Its forces are fighting in neighboring Yemen, and military forces from Saudi Arabia and its Persian Gulf neighbors have been fighting covertly and semi-covertly in operations stretching from Libya to Syria.
Creating a “coalition” to fight “terrorism,” would give the Saudis another rhetorical ploy to hide their increasingly direct role in supporting militarily the terrorist proxies they have deployed and who are now being defeated across the MENA region. Just as the US has done in Syria, using ISIS as a pretext to involve itself directly and militarily in the Syrian conflict without ever actually fighting ISIS, Saudi Arabia is seeking to create a plausible cover story to do the same.
For those interested in truly defeating terrorism globally – recognizing the state sponsors of terrorism and excluding them categorically from solving the problem until they are held responsible for creating it in the first place is essential. Saudi Arabia’s announcement was met with skepticism, even ridicule for this very reason. Second, to defeat terrorism globally, those truly interested in investing in such a battle, should do so with those demonstrating a sincere desire to eradicate this scourge.
Thanks to the US DIA, a list of nations leading the fight has already been provided.
Tony Cartalucci, Bangkok-based geopolitical researcher and writer, especially for the online magazine“New Eastern Outlook”.
The original source of this article is New Eastern Outlook
EDITOR'S CHOICE | 30.12.2015 | 22:56
A series of controversial steps in the region has left Turkey increasingly isolated in its neighborhood. As a result, the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government has gone on a hunt for new “friends.” Normalizing ties with Israel is now back on the agenda. The second door the government has knocked on is Qatar's.
Yet, even Qatar’s friendship could not stop the Arab League from adopting a joint statement last week condemning the Turkish troop deployment in Bashiqa, near Mosul, and urging Ankara to respect Iraq’s territorial integrity. The deployment “is an assault on Iraqi sovereignty and a threat to Arab national security,” the statement said, while Arab League deputy chief Ahmed Ben Heli added that the Turkish troops “increased tumult in the region.”
Meanwhile, the AKP government seems to have postponed its claim of “neo-Ottoman and regional leadership” by joining the Saudi-led Islamic coalition against terrorism, while moving even closer to Qatar, a country with which Erdogan has had warm ties for years.
Snubbed by Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Paris climate summit in early December, Erdogan flew directly to Doha for talks with Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani. The sides signed an agreement for Turkey’s import of Qatari natural gas. Commenting on the agreement, Erdogan said, “As you know, Qatar was planning to enter the liquefied natural gas [LNG] sector in Turkey. They were exploring whether they could invest in Turkey in the realm of LNG storage. Now a step forward has been taken on this issue.”
As energy cooperation with Qatar moves higher on Turkey’s agenda, Qatari investments in Turkey are also noteworthy. A series of investments by Qatari companies have cheered up the AKP government, alleviating the impact of foreign capital flight from Turkey.
Since the Nov. 1 early elections, foreign investors have withdrawn some $1.5 billion from the Turkish stock and bond markets. The Qatar National Bank (QNB), for its part, announced last week it was putting 2.7 billion euros ($3 billion) in Finansbank, Turkey’s fifth-largest private bank.
In 2013, the Commercial Bank of Qatar had bought the majority shares of another Turkish lender, ABank, for $460 million. Tuncay Ozilhan, the CEO of Turkey’s Anadolu Holding, which sold the shares, would later comment “good chemistry” had been found with the Qataris, adding, “We are now relaxed and comfy. A rich daddy makes one joyous and easy.”
The QNB’s acquisition of Finansbank is a move of economic and financial significance for Turkey, coming as a morale booster both for the government and the financial markets at a time when economic confidence indexes have badly plunged. QNB CEO Ali Ahmed Al-Kuwari said in a statement that it was looking forward to contributing to Turkey’s economic future and boosting QNB's international activities.
The Turkish media has been another sector drawing remarkable Qatari investments. Al Jazeera’s project to launch a Turkish-language TV channel has hit a dead end, but the network maintains a Turkish-language news portal.
The Qataris entered the Turkish media sector in 2008 when one of the country’s largest media groups, Sabah-ATV, in state receivership due to its owner’s unpaid bank debts, was acquired by a partnership between Turkey’s Calik Holding — in which Erdogan’s son-in-law Berat Albayrak, now energy minister, and his brother Serhat Albayrak served as senior executives — and Qatar’s Lusail International Media Company. The Qataris acquired 25% of the media group’s shares and put significant money in Calik Holding.
The Sabah-ATV group was later sold to businessmen close to Erdogan in a controversial transaction, which figured prominently in the corruption and bribery scandal that rocked the government in December 2013.
The boss of another pro-government media group, Star, has partnered with Qatar in the defense industry sector. In 2013, the Savings Deposit Insurance Fund (TMSF), which runs companies taken into state receivership, sold two newspapers, two TV channels and the BMC vehicle manufacturer — all seized from Cukurova Holding — to Ethem Sancak, a Turkish businessman famous for saying he was "in love with Erdogan." After buying BMC, which manufactures armored vehicles for the Turkish army and police, Sancak sold half of the company’s shares to the Qatar Armed Forces Industry Committee.
Most recently, the Bein group, an Al Jazeera affiliate, acquired Turkey’s biggest satellite television provider, Digiturk, in what was the largest Qatari investment in the Turkish media sector so far. The TMSF sold Digiturk, also a former Cukurova asset, to the Qataris without asking for a tender and without disclosing the financial terms of the deal. Digiturk, which holds the broadcast rights of the Turkish soccer league, has 3.5 million subscribers and broadcasts 239 television channels. Nasser Al-Khelaifi, the CEO of the Qatari company and president of French football club Paris Saint-Germain, called Digiturk’s acquisition “a key milestone in our global expansion.”
Additionally, Mayhoola for Investments, a Qatari investment fund that owns Italian fashion house Valentino, acquired a stake earlier this year in Boyner, one of Turkey’s leading textile, ready-to-wear and retail companies for 885 million Turkish lira ($304 million).
The Qatari direct investments in Turkey, which now stand at $6 billion, could soon reach $10 billion, according to media reports. Qatari investors are reportedly in talks to buy a stake in another large Turkish bank, whose name has not been disclosed.
The economic ties have developed against the backdrop of close personal relations between Qatar’s rulers and Erdogan, his family and inner circle.
The Qatari and Saudi support for Erdogan and the AKP has been also the subject of speculation regarding the huge mysterious inflow of unidentified foreign currency to Turkey during the years of AKP rule. The sum has reached an unprecedented $36 billion in total, with the monthly inflows increasing especially during election time.
Qatar’s support for Turkey’s president and government in times of hardship does not go unanswered, of course. In March, Istanbul’s Metropolitan Municipality made a gesture in its own way, renaming one of the city’s major roads “Qatar Boulevard.”
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Did John McCain Meet with Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the Alleged Head of the Islamic State (ISIS, ISIL, Daesh)?
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