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Sat, 13 Feb 2016
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NY Times: Syria is a disgrace for Obama, Putin's policy ensured Russia's success

Putin: "It's alright buddy, maybe next time you'll get it right"
Russian President Vladimir Putin has already won in Syria, according to journalists from The New York Times, which became possible due to the "helplessness" of American President Barack Obama. He turned Syria into "a bloody graveyard of American beliefs."

The publication stated that Putin's systematic policy ensured the success of Russia's actions in Syria, as well as "the senselessness" of the US administration.

The author, Roger Cohen, notices that Washington only demonstrates the visibility of activities in Syria. Cohen is confident that American statements - "are just words" and actually "music in Syria is ordered" by Vladimir Putin. Especially because of the inaction of Obama, writes Stratfor.

In addition, the author believes that although the Syrian army are successfully defeating the militants on the territory, it is not a decisive fact in the fight against ISIL. Being almost completely surrounded, Aleppo could become the Syrian Sarajevo, the publication notes. Blame belongs to the "helplessness" of the U.S. government.

Snakes in Suits

Scamming by the Elites: The West destroys Syria and then asks the rest of the world to pay to rebuild it

© Michael Alaeddin
Citizens of the world are being asked to dig deep for humanitarian aid to Syria. After five years of war and millions displaced there is an urgent need for the world to lend a hand, we are told.

At a so-called "donor conference"in London this week, British prime minister David Cameron appealed to the rest of the world to stump up $8 billion to help war-torn Syria.

Among the 60 nations attending the confab were the US, France, Britain, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Senior figures from these countries were wringing their hands in anguish over the plight of Syrian refugees.

Washington's top diplomat John Kerry told delegates: "With people reduced to eating grass and leaves and killing stray animals in order to survive on a day-to-day basis, that is something that should tear at the conscience of all civilized people and we all have a responsibility to respond to it."

UN chief Ban Ki-Moon adjured nations to "take responsibility to end the crisis in Syria".

Take responsibility for ending the crisis? How about taking responsibility for beginning it?


Lavrov: West whips up hysteria over myth of Russian nuclear threat

© Maxim Shemetov / Reuters
The 28-member trans-Atlantic military block, along with a number of European countries, is intentionally hyping up the "myth" that Russia allegedly poses a so-called "threat" to Sweden and the Baltic states, Russia's Foreign Minister said.

"The leaders of NATO member states and a number of European countries, especially Britain, the Nordic countries, the Baltic counties neighboring us, Poland, Romania and some others, are whipping up 'Russia's threat' myth, as well as the idea that we are planning to use our nuclear weapons to intimidate Sweden and the Baltic countries," Sergei Lavrov said in an interview with the Moskovsky Komsomolets daily.

"There is the impression that Russia is nearly the main stumbling block in international relations, because today the dominant media sources spread news from only the Western point of view," he added.

Despite the aggressive stance of the western media, the overwhelming majority of the countries in the world still support Russia, Lavrov noted.


White Book of crimes: Report on war crimes committed by Kiev's army in Donbass released in English

© Marko Djurica / Reuters
A woman cries as she walks past destroyed houses in the town of Debaltseve, north-east from Donetsk, March 13, 2015.
A report on war crimes committed by Kiev's army and militia in eastern Ukraine is now available in English. It's compiled by Russia's Investigative Committee and covers 54 criminal cases. Kiev's "special operation" in the east of Ukraine aimed at suppressing the protest movement in the Donbass Region has been in progress since the middle of April 2014. The operation brought about numerous civilian casualties and the general destruction of local infrastructure: according to the UN figures for December 2015, more than 9,000 people died in the conflict and some 20 thousand more were injured. Over 1.3 million lost their homes, as stated in the previous UN report published in August.

The report, entitled 'The Tragedy of South-Eastern Ukraine: The White Book of Crimes', was initially published last year in Russian and edited by Investigative Committee Chairman Aleksandr Bastrykin. Some 2,500 volumes of evidence collected for the book include testimonies of over 100,000 witnesses. "The book provides evidence of international and transnational crimes committed on the territory of Ukraine, collected by Russia's Investigative Committee dealing with the relevant criminal proceedings, as well as records of international organizations on the matter and comments of scholars specializing in international law," said committee spokesman Vladimir Markin.

Comment: The Security Forces of Ukraine (SBU), the Ukrainian armed forces, the National Guard and other formations within the Interior Ministry of Ukraine and illegal armed groups, such as Right Sector have systematically and on purpose violated Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights that reads, 'No one shall be subjected to torture or to inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.' The full report can be downloaded here. The first report is available here.

See also:


NATO build-up in east-EU countries directed at would-be aggressors, is seen as aggression

© Reuters
NATO Secretary General Jens Stotenberg (center) addresses a meeting of NATO defense ministers, Brussels, February 10, 2016.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg says the Western military alliance's build-up in eastern Europe is directed at any would-be aggressor. Speaking at a news conference prior to the beginning of a two-day meeting of NATO defense ministers in the Belgian capital city of Brussels on Wednesday, Stoltenberg said he expected the officials to agree to a plan aimed at boosting the alliance's presence in eastern European countries.

"This will send a clear signal. NATO will respond as one to any aggression against any ally," he said, adding, "Today and tomorrow, we will make decisions to strengthen our defense and deterrence." NATO has drawn up a plan dubbed "modern deterrence," under which some 6,000 troops on rotation could be deployed to countries such as Poland and the Baltic states. It also involves increased military spending after years of post-Cold War cuts, and puts small forces and equipment on the ground so that reinforcements can hit the ground running in any crisis.

However, some of NATO's 28 member states oppose the scheme, arguing that the large-scale deployment would see a return to a Cold War stand-off with Russia. NATO leaders are set to formally endorse the proposal at an upcoming summit in Poland in July.

Comment: NATO should look in the mirror. Would it tolerate a Russian-led military coalition deployment on its borders?

Bad Guys

More fascist nonsense from Ukraine: Kiev orders Crimea to rename their towns

Ah, the bastion of those good ole, 1930's 'European values'
Crimean authorities have called it complete nonsense: Ukraine says it will rename some of the towns and streets of the peninsula as part of their "decommunization".

Last Saturday, in an interview with "Kraina" magazine, the director of the Ukrainian Institute of National Remembrance, Vladimir Vyatrovich, commented on Kiev's plans to rename the villages of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions as well as the cities of Crimea. "Of course, Yalta will remain Yalta - we're referring to 'Komsomolskoye', 'Lenino'", etc, he said.

If the village authorities don't suggest their own variants for new names, they will be selected by the Institute and renaming will be enforced. The Verkhovna Rada intends to vote for the new names by 21st February.


Daesh extorts money from Iraqis wanting to leave Fallujah

© www.presstv.ir
Pay up or stay in hell.
The Takfiri Daesh terrorist group has announced that the residents of the central Iraqi city of Fallujah in Anbar Province must pay USD 1,000 in extorted money if they want to leave the terrorist-held city. Local Iraqi media reported on Wednesday that the terror group intends to force people to stay in Fallujah by adopting the extortion method as an Iraqi army offensive to liberate the city is looming. Fallujah became the focus of the anti-Daesh battle after Iraqis liberated Anbar's provincial capital of Ramadi in December 2015.

A UN report published in November 2014 said that Daesh makes approximately USD 96,000 to USD 123,000 per day from ransom payments.

The Iraqi military says control over Fallujah could pave the way for a final push to flush the terrorists out of the major city of Mosul, the capital of Nineveh Province, which was overtaken by Daesh in the summer of 2014. In a separate development on Tuesday, 12 Daesh elements were killed after the Iraqi army artillery and gunships bombarded their positions in the Saqlawiyah area, just north of Fallujah.

Comment: If the extortion works well here, next a franchise in Libya?


Lavrov: Turkey buffer zone plan for Syria violates international law

© www.bbc.com
Will the Kurds be facing two enemies, the Turks and Daesh, in a Syrian buffer zone?
The Russian foreign minister has censured Turkey's plan to establish a buffer zone in Syria, saying such a proposal contradicts the international law and will heighten tensions in the region. "To our knowledge, the Turks have discussed with NATO their intention to create ISIL (Daesh)-free zones in the territory of Syria. Indeed, that will violate every principle of international law and will lead to a substantial, qualitative escalation [of tensions]," Sergei Lavrov said in an interview with the Russian daily, Moskovsky Komsomolets, on Wednesday.

The buffer zone is planned to cover a border area between two Kurdish enclaves, "a combination of whose strength Turkey deems absolutely unacceptable for itself at least because that will block Turkey's ability to provide supplies to militants in Syria and to receive contraband from them," he said.

The Turkish government has long been pushing for a buffer zone or no-fly zone inside Syria that stretches 110 kilometers (68 miles) long and 28 kilometers (17 miles) wide between the southern Turkish towns of Karkamis and Oncupinar. However, opponents say Ankara is seeking to intensify its crackdown on minority Kurds, who are targeted in the Turkish army operations against the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) militants.

Lavrov further accused Ankara of holding secret negotiations with Daesh on smuggling, saying, "They're discussing various actions in the current conditions under our Aerospace Forces' airstrikes seriously limiting their traditional routes of smuggling."

Comment: An ongoing conflict since 1984, it is no secret that Turkey wants to eliminate the Kurds. The buffer zone would allow Turkey prime access to the Kurdish population while covertly supporting, profiting from and enlisting help from Daesh ("the enemy"). Will Lavrov's charge of violating international law nix the plan? If so, expect Turkey to find a way around it.

See also: Anti-PKK campaign in SE Turkey turns into a slaughter


France begins clampdown on 'conspiracy theories' to justify state of emergency

As more and more French youth are getting hooked on various conspiracy theories, the French Ministry of Education plans to organize a special meeting and bring together 300 teachers, researchers, psychologists and students, Le Figaro reported.

According to the research company Ipsos, one in five among young French citizens believes and supports conspiracy theories, which became ever so popular as of recent, especially after last year's Paris terrorist attacks.

To combat the spread of disinformation and sometimes outright lunacy, which a few conspiracy theories bring to the table, French Minister of Education Najat Vallaud-Belkacem decided to gather students and educators in a meeting on February 9 and discuss how one could distinguish real and verifiable information from various kinds of unprovable information that many conspiracy theories present.


Eye 1

Clapper: US intelligence agencies to boost surveillance using home devices

© brushfyre.blogspot.com
Just a few of the smart household devices that will spy on you!
The head of the US intelligence community has acknowledged for the first time that American spy agencies might use a new generation of smart household devices to increase their surveillance capabilities. James Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence, made the remarks on Tuesday during a testimony before the Senate Armed Services and Intelligence Committees as part of an assessment of threats facing the United States. "In the future, intelligence services might use the [Internet of Things] for identification, surveillance, monitoring, location tracking, and targeting for recruitment, or to gain access to networks or user credentials," Clapper said.

The Internet of Things is the network of physical objects—devices, vehicles, buildings and other items which are embedded with electronics, software, sensors, and network connectivity, which enables these objects to collect and exchange data.

Clapper did not specifically name any intelligence agency as involved in the surveillance of household devices. But technology experts and privacy advocates examining the Internet of Things believe that US surveillance agencies will intercept the signals the newly networked devices emit, much as they do with those from mobile phones.

The experts warn that thousands of completely unsecured web-connected devices are currently used by customers.

Comment: So if they are "contemplating" it now, it means they are already using it. All that is left is to sell it to the American public, as in homegrown extremists and Russia.