Saturday 17 August 2019

Sayyed Nasrallah: Israel Is Certain of Defeat in any War on Lebanon

August 16, 2019
Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah
Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah delivered a speech Friday amid wide participation in a celebration held in Bint Jbeil on the 13th anniversary of the July war victory.
His eminence congratulated the Lebanese over Al-Adha Eid and assured that people in the south have been able to celebrate the Eid peacefully without any fear or concern of any attack because of the unannounced efforts of the resistance fighters, the constant presence in the field, and the ongoing armament.
He referred to the wide construction of houses and touristic sites in the south from the money and hard work of people and immigrants whom the US is targeting, and noted that this reveals the trust, certainty, and faith of people in the capability to confront and deter any attack by the enemy.
Sayyed Nasrallah called upon the Lebanese to appreciate the blessing of peace and safety by protecting it because it is the outcome of their efforts and their adherence to the golden formula (people, army, resistance). He further called on the government to hold its responsibility to protect and stabilize the current security situation in Lebanon and the South.
Hezbollah Secretary General pointed out that “the Israeli war on Lebanon in July 2016 was a continuation of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars to build a “New Middle East” because reports have assured that Israel would have settled with a one day response on the capturing of two soldiers, but the US pushed it to a longer war.”
“Israel was only an implementation tool in this war” he said, adding that “among the goals of July war was putting an end to the resistance in Lebanon, toppling the Syrian regime, and defeating Iran in the region and if this project succeeded the US would have dominated our region. However, the war did not stop because of the international and Arab pressure but due to US and Israel’s recognition of their failure.”
Sayyed Nasrallah assured that “the strength of Lebanon is what brought victory… Some parts in the resistance did not want to agree on the decision of ceasefire because they were aware of the great achievements they were going to make…  Victory was the result of the faith, determination and sacrifices of the people, and first and foremost it was God’s Will, and this is the basic rule.”
His eminence added that “the significant stances of former President Emile Lahoud and Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri back then and the public support played an important role for us, and if it weren’t for the absence internal unity back then, Lebanon could’ve imposed its conditions.”
He further saluted the patriotic stances of President Michel Aoun who assured that in case of another war Lebanon would triumph again, and said “with such stances, they could never defeat us.”
Hezbollah SG stressed that Israel gave up on many of its goals in order to stop war, indicating that “Israel wanted to make a military achievement in the battle field and in the area of Bint Jbeil in specific because it wanted to take control over it so that it would hold a military procession there and one of its Generals would make a speech from the center of the city and say “look at the strength of the state of Israel”.”
“They want to prove wrong the famous term “Israel is weaker than a spider web” because it worries everyone in Israel and it is inbuilt in their conscious and unconscious and is of wide focus in their studies and conferences…,” his eminence added.
He announced: “Today I tell the Israeli enemy that if you enter the south, every area will be similar to this “steadfastness square” that we are celebrating in today and even 500 times stronger, your army will be defeated and your vehicles will be destroyed,” affirming that “Hezbollah which they wanted to destroy has become a regional power.”
Sayyed Nasrallah pointed out that “the weakness of Israel became evident after July war… today their discussions rotate around whether Israel would triumph in the third war or not. They are certain they wouldn’t triumph this is why they are trying to create a new concept of victory, to convince their people with it.”
“Look at the daily operations taking place by Palestinians against Israelis in the occupied territories by youth who don’t even exceed the age of 15. This is the new Palestinian generation… and all their efforts to topple the resistance in Palestine, Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Iran have failed, and our strength is what we should rely on,” he said, pointing out that “today Israel doesn’t consider waging a war on Lebanon because it is aware of its power of deterrence and because it is aware that any war on Lebanon would not only be against Hezbollah but it would explode the whole region.”
Moving to the Iranian developments, Sayyed Nasrallah added that “As Imam Khamenei said the price of the resistance is much lower than the price of submission, and today we stand in front of a real achievement after the US stopped talking about a war on Iran. Iran has proved its strength and it proved that it doesn’t accept to be threatened, and I assure that a war on Iran is a war on the resistance in the whole region.”
Internally, Sayyed Nasrallah assured that “we don’t act from the position of the triumphant, we are acting on the same level of other political parts and we don’t want to remove anyone from the political scene. We haven’t canceled anyone in the Shiite political scene, and the elections and freedom of protests prove that… and we call on other sects not to cancel anyone who has public presence.”
His eminence called upon the Lebanese political authorities to get together to fix the corrupted files in the country .
In conclusion, he expressed sorrow for the resignation of MP Nawwaf Al-Moussawi from the parliament for personal reasons and assured that he will continue his duties in Hezbollah, and called for voting for Sheikh Hasan Ezzedine for the parliamentary seat in Tyre area hoping that he wins.
On another level, Sayyed Nasrallah announced that another ceremony celebrating the anniversary of the second victory will take place on the 25th of August in Baalbek city in which he will be delivering a speech.

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Balance of Deterrence: Yemen’s Latest Operation against Biggest Strategic Saudi Target

Balance of Deterrence: Yemen’s Latest Operation against Biggest Strategic Saudi Target

The Yemeni Armed Forces Spokesman Brigadier General Yehya Saree announced that the Yemeni forces targeted with 10 drones the Shaybah oil field and refinery, which belongs to Saudi Aramco Company.
The target has the largest strategic oil reserve in the Saudi Kingdom, which accommodates more than 1 billion barrels.
Saree stressed that targeting Aramco’s oil field and refinery comes as the first operation to establish a balance of deterrence.
The operation, dubbed “first balance of deterrence”, is part of the legitimate deterrence of the Saudi aggression’s crimes and siege, Saree noted.

Yemeni Air Force Carries out the Largest Attack against the Saudi Aggression

August 17, 2019
Qasif drone
The Yemeni air force and the Popular Committees carried out the largest attack in the Saudi depth since the beginning of the Saudi-US aggression on Yemen.
The forces have conducted attacks on an oil field affiliated to Saudi Aramco in the east of the kingdom in retaliation for Riyadh’s war on their country, al-Maseerah TV reported. Oil facilities at Shaybah, which has the largest strategic oil reserve in Saudi Arabia near the UAE border, were targeted by 10 Yemeni drones.
The Shaybah field and refinery has the largest strategic stockpile in the Kingdom and can accommodate more than one billion barrels, Yemen’s armed forces spokesman Brigadier General Yahya Sare’e.
Sare’e said the operation was launched as part of “a legitimate deterrence for the aggression crimes and siege” against the Yemeni nation.
He renewed call on companies and civilians to stay away from all vital sites in Saudi Arabia, adding that Yemen’s bank of targets inside the kingdom “expands daily” and that the future attacks would be more painful to the enemy.
“Forces of aggression have no choice but to stop the war and lift the siege on the Yemeni people,” Sare’e said.
Early on Saturday, Saudi-led coalition warplanes fired flares over Yemen’s southern port city of Aden near camps occupied by the Emirati-backed separatists.
The coalition also urged the southern separatists to withdraw from all sites they have recently captured in Aden.
However, Aden local officials said that although the UAE-sponsored elements had moved away from the nearly empty presidential palace and central bank, they were not quitting the city’s military camps.
“We will not retreat, we will not budge and planes will not scare us,” a statement from one of the brigades fighting as part of the Emirati-backed militants.
Yemen has been since March 2015 under brutal aggression by Saudi-led Coalition, in a bid to restore control to fugitive Hadi who is Riyadh’s ally.
Hundreds of thousands of Yemenis have been killed or injured in the strikes launched by the coalition, with the vast majority of them are civilians.
Source: Websites

Shaybah Oil Field under Yemeni Drones Fire

The Saudi Shaybah Oil Field was targeted by ten Yemeni drones as part of the latest operations to deter the Saudi crimes against Yemen.
Here are some important points to learn about it:
  • It is a desert area located east of Saudi Arabia.
  • It is some 10 kilometers away from the UAE’s Abu Dhabi border.
  • It was a disputed area between Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
  • It is one of the most important oil fields in Saudi Arabia.
  • Its oil reserve is 16 billion barrels of crude oil and 25 trillion cubic meters of gas.
  • It produces some 600,000 barrels a day, and is capable to continue with the same range for around 70 years.
  • It was labeled by The Guardian as almost of same value as a gold mine rather than an oil field.
Relater news

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Sayyed Nsrallah… The Well-Trusted ‘Enemy’, Hezbollah’s Biggest Secrets

Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah
August 15, 2019
Although the Zionist entity has been striving to eliminate Hezbollah’s No.1 in order to weaken the Lebanese resistance group, Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah became through his TV appearances the most trusted personality by the Israeli public during the 2006 July War.
Ody Levyl, an Israeli political psychology researcher at Ben Gurion University of the Negev, affirmed the relationship between Sayyed Nasrallah and the Israeli public, according to a poll conducted in 2006 and cited by Al-Mayadeen, Beirut-based Pan-Arab TV Satellite Channel.
He said that the Israelis, during the 33-day war, had only one reference in which they could trust to know what was really happening in the battlefield.
“There was only one leader for the Israeli home front in the war, [Sayyed] Hassan Nasrallah. Because Israelis have seen in this man, who wear a black turban, a sincere and much more competent person than their leaders, “Levyl wrote.
According to the poll, the Israelis believed that the one who provided them with real information on the course of fighting and military actions taking place during the war, and who had great credibility was their No.1 enemy, Sayyed Nasrallah, andn without any competitor.
Levyl added, “The hatred against Nasrallah because he represents what hurts us, is a hatred of a different kind. A hatred that has never existed before towards a leader who is hostile to Israel.”
“Guess What’s in Nasrallah’s Head”
In an investigative report published by Israeli Yedioth Ahronoth in July 2007, a group of 15 experts described Sayyed Naasralah as “an intelligent man in a surprising way.”
The report, entitled “Experts inside Nasrallah’s Head”, found out that the Hezbollah leader “prepares well for his appearances” and “shows no sign of fear of death.”
“Nasrallah believes seriously about having a future, but he still has to face the challenges before him,” added the report, prepared by the group of experts.
The group, which included intelligence analysts, orientalists and psychologists among others, relied in their findings on a set of data including Sayyed Nasrallah’s body language and facial expressions.
“Biggest Secrets”
Furthermore, in the aftermath of the July War, the Washington Post had devoted an article to Hezbollah and its leader on August 14, 2006.
It described Hezbollah as “the best guerrilla group in the world”, attributing its power to its brilliance, secrecy, and Iranian funding.
The article also concluded that Hezbollah Secretary General, Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah “is absolutely one of biggest secrets” of the Lebanese resistance group.
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China’s Participation in US Mission in Persian Gulf ‘Wishful Thinking’: Paper

US Navy destroyer
The damaged US Navy destroyer USS Fitzgerald is towed back to Yokosuka Naval Base by a tugboat on Saturday after its collision with the container ship ACX Crystal off the coast of Yokosuka, Japan.
August 17, 2019
A state-run Chinese newspaper says it is “wishful thinking” to expect that Beijing will join a US-led naval mission purportedly aimed at protecting shipping lanes in the Persian Gulf.
The Global Times reported that the US bid to form a coalition of escorting vessels through the Strait of Hormuz is actually part of Washington’s strategy “to comprehensively crack down” on Iran.
However, only “a handful of countries” have responded to the US propaganda campaign against the Islamic Republic, the paper added.
Some Americans wish China would participate in the mission in a bid to mitigate tensions between the two sides, but such an expectation is very unlikely to happen as it would endanger the interests of both Beijing and Tehran, according to the report.
“This is obviously wishful thinking. Iran is a comprehensive strategic partner of China and China is dedicated to safeguarding peace and stability in the Persian Gulf. Such a coalition would only damage Iran’s interests and thus China’s,” it said.
It further highlighted China’s close cooperation with Iran in fighting pirates and its attempts to maintain regional stability and security.
China has sent naval fleets on escort missions to the Gulf of Aden as well as waters off Somalia and established a support base in Djibouti for the People’s Liberation Army ships, the report said.
“There should be a maritime coalition, but definitely not one led by the US or one meant to serve US strategies. The coalition should actually safeguard the interests of Persian Gulf countries and their legitimate trading partners,” it pointed out.
The Global Times report also complained about “Washington’s arrogance and reckless moves” which have caused turmoil in the Persian Gulf.
The United States has been trying to persuade its allies into joining a coalition with the declared aim of providing “security” for merchant shipping in the Strait of Hormuz through which about a fifth of all oil consumed globally passes.
Only Israel and the UK have welcomed the call, which has not been well received among Washington’s other allies.
The US is trying to project its campaign as a bid to secure the Persian Gulf, but “the Europeans argue that Washington created the problem in the first place by trying to kill off Iran’s oil exports”, the New York Times wrote this month.

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US Waging Wars on Multiple Fronts: Cold Wars, Hot Wars, Economic Wars, Propaganda Wars …

Supported by both hawkish wings of its war party, the US is waging hot wars, cold wars, economic wars, financial wars, trade wars, anti-social justice wars, anti-human rights wars, anti-democracy wars, propaganda wars, sanctions wars, tariffs wars, protest wars, homeland wars, and environmental wars on multiple fronts worldwide — ordinary people everywhere the losers.
During decades of Cold War years, the US got along with Soviet Russia, even if uneasily at times. Nixon went to China. Relations today with both countries and many others are more dismal and dangerous than any previous time in the post-WW II period.
New wars could erupt without warning. The threat of possible nuclear war is ominously real by accident or design.
The land of opportunity I remember as a youth is now consumed by its hubris, arrogance, rage to colonize planet earth, control its resources and exploit it people.
New Deal, Fair Deal, Great Society years I grew up in were replaced by neoliberal harshness, endless wars on humanity at home and abroad, a growing wealth disparity exceeding the robber baron years, along with mass unemployment and underemployment, growing homelessness, hunger, and poverty, as well as a ruling class dismissive of the public welfare.
Current US leadership is militantly hawkish and anti-populist, led by a racist geopolitical/economic know-nothing/reality TV president.
Dark forces run things, headquartered on Wall Street and in corporate boardrooms, the rule of law replaced by police state governance, a free and open society by mass surveillance and growing totalitarianism.
Challenging authority disruptively with collective activism when vitally needed is absent.
The US reached peak power, prominence, influence, and leadership on the world stage following WW II, the only major nation left unscathed by its ravages.
Its preemptive war of aggression on nonbelligerent North Korea, a nation threatening no one, started its downward trajectory.
Today it’s a nation in decline while China, Russia and other countries are rising. It spends countless trillions of dollars for militarism and warmaking against invented enemies. No real ones exist.
Its preeminence as a military super-power was overtaken by Russia, China heading toward becoming the world’s leading economic power one day, multi-world polarity replacing unipolarity the US favors to dominate other nations.
Its rage for maintaining a global empire of bases as platforms for endless wars of aggression came at the expense of eroding social justice on the chopping block for elimination altogether.
The myth of American exceptionalism, the indispensable state, an illusory moral superiority, and military supremacy persist despite hard evidence debunking these notions.
Democracy in America is fiction, not fact, a system of governance its ruling class abhors, tolerating it nowhere, nations like Venezuela targeted to replace it with fascist rule.
The US is plagued by the same dynamic that doomed all other empires in history.
It’s an increasingly repressive/secretive/intrusive warrior state, spreading death, destruction and human misery worldwide.
It exploits ordinary people to serve privileged interests — a pariah state/declining power because of its unwillingness to change.
Its war machine never rests. Its criminal class is bipartisan. Its governance meets the definition of fascism — wrapped in the American flag.
It’s a corporate/political partnership over the rights and welfare of ordinary people, exploiting them for power and profits — at home and abroad.
It’s way too late for scattered reforms. The American way is too debauched to fix.
Nothing short of revolutionary change can work. Yet there’s not a hint of it in prospect because of a know-nothing populace distracted and controlled by bread, circuses, and the power of state-approved/media disseminated propaganda.
A decade ago, the late Doug Dowd said “(t)he world now stands on a cliff’s edge.”
He envisioned “four related groups of horrors: existing and likely wars, a fragile world economy, pervasive and deepening corruption, and the earth dangerously near the ‘tipping point’ of environmental disaster.”
It’s not a pretty picture, things worse now than years earlier.
A permanent state of war exists with no prospect for peace in our time — while freedom in the US and West erode toward disappearing altogether the way things are heading.
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Award-winning author Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at He is a Research Associate of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG)
His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”
Visit his blog site at
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That’s How #Hezbollah Navy Struck #Israel’s Warship SAAR-5 in 2006 War: Video

“Army to Be Drowned”: Al-Manar Documentary that Raises Eyebrows in ‘Israel’

August 16, 2019
Hezbollah anti-ship missile
Mohammad Salami
In a special interview with #Army_To_Be_Drowned documentary broadcast via Al-Manar TV, Hezbollah navy commander revealed the details of the operation in which #Israel’s warship SAAR-5 was struck in 2006 war.
The documentary started with showing the Israeli reports about the strike and the a testimony made by one of the Zionist soldiers who were on board when the warship was struck.
The reports highlighted the damage inflicted upon SAAR-5 warship, noting that it was moved to Ashdud seaport after evacuating the corpses of the four dead soldiers. More Here


On August 15, Lebanon’s al-Manar TV broadcasted a special documentary revealing extensive details about the 2006 Hezbollah attack on Israeli Navy ship Hanit.
Hezbollah used anti-ship missiles in the attack, which occurred on the third day of the 2006 Israeli-Lebanese war [July 14]. INS Hanit, a modern Sa’ar 5-class corvette, was damaged as a result.
Four of Hanit’s crew members, Staff Sergeant Tal Amgar, Corporal Shai Atas, Sergeant Yaniv Hershkovitz and First Sergeant Dov Steinshuss, were killed.
The new documentary, “Army to Be Drowned,” reveals how Hezbollah detected and successfully targeted the Israeli warship and shades some light on the Lebanese group’s costal defense capabilities.
Detection and Identification of INS Hanit:
The first part of the documentary reveals how Hezbollah personnel were able to detect and identify INS Hanit.
The Lebanese group apparently used a land-based Kelvin Hughes SharpEye naval search radar to achieve this task. Manufactured by Britain’s Kelvin Hughes, the radar is available for commercial use.
In March of 2011, the Israeli military seized two radars of the same type aboard the vessel Victoria, which was allegedly smuggling weapons from Iran to the Hamas Movement in the Gaza Strip. Six Chinese-made C-704 anti-ship missiles were also seized.
A normal video camera was used to properly identify the warship, which was sailing few kilometers off the Lebanese shores, and also to document the whole operation.
The strike:
The documentary’s second part contains footage of the actually targeting of INS Hanit by Hezbollah.
Hezbollah fighters can be seen preparing then launching at least two Chinese-made C-802 anti-ship missiles at the Israeli warship at exactly 20:00 PM [Beriut time] on 14-8-2006.
The Lebanese armed group used a truck-mounted tripartite missile launcher. The Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) uses similar launchers for the C-802 missile.
Hezbollah Reveals Details Of 2006 Attack On INS Hanit Warship (Videos)
Click to see full-size image, By Tasnim News Agency
Hezbollah’s costal-defense capabilities:
Army to Be Drowned provided us with a rare look at a part of Hezbollah’s costal-defense capabilities.
The documentary confirmed that Hezbollah owns C-802 and C-704 anti-ship missiles. The first has a range of no less than 180km, while the second’s range is limited to 35km. Both missiles are guided with active radar homing (ARH), which means that they don’t require any radar correction after launch.
While the documentary confirmed that C-802 missiles were used in the attack on INS Hanit, it remains unclear if C-704 missiles were used by Hezbollah in other attacks. The Lebanese group announced several attacks on small Israeli vessels during the 2006 war.
Hezbollah’s ability to operate such advanced anti-ship weapons poses a serious threat to the Israeli Navy, which have been working since 2006 to improve its counter-measures.
This new documentary will likely inflame the tension between Lebanon and Israel. Over the last year, Israeli leaders threatened to take military action against Hezbollah’s missile arsenal on many occasions and even sent threats to Beirut.

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Friday 16 August 2019

Punishing the World With Sanctions

Image result for Punishing the World With Sanctions
Philip Giraldi
August 15, 2019
Sanctions are economic warfare, pure and simple. As an alternative to a direct military attack on a country that is deemed to be misbehaving they are certainly preferable, but no one should be under any illusions regarding what they actually represent. They are war by other means and they are also illegal unless authorized by a supra-national authority like the United Nations Security Council, which was set up after World War II to create a framework that inter alia would enable putting pressure on a rogue regime without going to war. At least that was the idea, but the sanctions regimes recently put in place unilaterally and without any international authority by the United States have had a remarkable tendency to escalate several conflicts rather than providing the type of pressure that would lead to some kind of agreement.
The most dangerous bit of theater involving sanctions initiated by the Trump administration continues to focus on Iran. Last week, the White House elevated its extreme pressure on the Iranians by engaging in a completely irrational sanctioning of Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif. The sanctions will have no effect whatsoever and they completely contradict Donald Trump’s repeated assertion that he is seeking diplomacy to resolving the conflict with Iran. One doesn’t accomplish that by sanctioning the opposition’s Foreign Minister. Also, the Iranians have received the message loud and clear that the threats coming from Washington have nothing to do with nuclear programs. The White House began its sanctions regime over a year ago when it withdrew from the JCPOA and they have been steadily increasing since that time even though Iran has continued to be fully compliant with the agreement. Recently, the US took the unprecedented step of sanctioning the entire Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, which is part of the nation’s military.
American Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has made clear that the sanctions on Iran are intended to cause real pain, which, in fact, they have succeeded in doing. Pompeo and his accomplice in crime National Security Advisor John Bolton believe that enough pressure will motivate the starving people to rise up in the streets and overthrow the government, an unlikely prospect as the American hostility has in fact increased popular support for the regime.
To be sure, ordinary people in Iran have found that they cannot obtain medicine and some types of food are in short supply but they are not about to rebel. The sanctioning in May of Iranian oil exports has only been partially effective but it has made the economy shrink, with workers losing jobs. The sanctions have also led to tit-for-tat seizures of oil and gas tankers, starting with the British interception of a ship carrying Iranian oil to Syria in early July.
Another bizarre escalation in sanctions that has taken place lately relates to the Skripal case in Britain. On August 2nd, Donald Trump signed an executive order imposing a package of new sanctions against Moscow over the alleged poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in England in March 2018. The order “prohibit[s] any United States bank from making any loan or providing any credit… except for loans or credits for the purpose of purchasing food or other agricultural commodities or products.” The ban also includes “the extension of any loan or financial or technical assistance… by international financial institutions,” meaning that international lenders will also be punished if they fail to follow Washington’s lead.
The sanctions were imposed under the authority provided by the US Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and Warfare Elimination Act adopted in 1991, which imposes penalties for use of chemical weapons. Novichok, which was reportedly used on the Skripals, is a chemical weapon developed in the labs of the Soviet Union, though a number of states are believed to currently have supplies of the agent in their arsenals. Russia can appeal the sanctions with 90 days by providing “reliable assurance” that it will not again use chemical weapons.
Russia has strenuously denied any role in the attack on the Skripals and the evidence that has so far been produced to substantiate the Kremlin’s involvement has been less than convincing. An initial package of US-imposed sanctions against Russia that includes the export of sensitive technologies and some financial services was implemented in August 2018.
Venezuela is also under the sanctions gun and is a perfect example how sanctions can escalate into something more punitive, leading incrementally to an actual state of war. Last week Washington expanded its sanctions regime, which is already causing starvation in parts of Venezuela, to include what amounts to a complete economic embargo directed against the Maduro regime that is being enforced by a naval blockade.
The Venezuelan government announced last Wednesday that the United States Navy had seized a cargo ship bound for Venezuela while it was transiting the Panama Canal. According to a government spokesman, the ship’s cargo was soy cakes intended for the production of food. As one of Washington’s raisons d’etre for imposing sanctions on Caracas was that government incompetence was starving the Venezuelan people, the move to aggravate that starvation would appear to be somewhat capricious and revealing of the fact that the White House could care less about what happens to the Venezuelan civilians who are caught up in the conflict.
Venezuelan Vice President Delcy Rodriguez condemned the move as “serious aggression,” and accused the Trump Administration of trying to impede Venezuela’s basic right to import food to feed its people.
One of the most pernicious aspects of the sanctions regimes that the United States is imposing is that they are global. When Washington puts someone on its sanctions list, other countries that do not comply with the demands being made are also subject to punishment, referred to as secondary sanctions. The sanctions on Iran’s oil exports, for example, are being globally enforced with some few exceptions, and any country that buys Iranian oil will be punished by being denied access to the US financial and banking system. That is a serious penalty as most international trade and business transactions go through the dollar denominated SWIFT banking network.
Finally, nothing illustrates the absurdity of the sanctions mania as a recent report that President Trump had sent his official hostage negotiator Robert O’Brien to Stockholm to obtain freedom for an American rap musician ASAP Rocky who was in jail after having gotten into a fight with some local boys. The Trumpster did not actually know the lad, but he was vouched for by the likes of Kim Kardashian and Kanye West, both of whom have had nice things to say about the president. The negotiator was instructed to tell Sweden that if they did not release Rocky there would be “negative consequences.” Who can doubt that the consequences would undoubtedly have included sanctions?
It has reached the point where the only country that likes the United States is Israel, which is locked into a similar cycle of incessant aggression. To be sure Donald Trump’s rhetoric is part of the problem, but the indiscriminate, illegal and immoral use of sanctions, which punish whole nations for the presumed sins of those nations’ leaders, is a major contributing factor. And the real irony is that even though sanctions cause pain, they are ineffective. Cuba has been under sanctions, technically and embargo, since 1960 and its ruling regime has not collapsed, and there is no chance that Venezuela, Iran or Russia’s government will go away at any time soon either. In fact, real change would be more likely if Washington were to sit down at a negotiating table with countries that it considers enemies and work to find solutions to common concerns. But that is not likely to happen with the current White House line-up, and equally distant with a Democratic Party obsessed with the “Russian threat” and other fables employed to explain its own failings.
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unishing the World With Sanctions
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