On August 7, Turkish and US officials agreed to jointly manage a buffer zone between the Turkish border and areas in Syria controlled by the Kurdish YPG, which Istanbul considers a “terrorist” threat. On October 6, the Trump presidency announced that US forces would withdraw from the border areas to make way for a “long-planned operation” by Turkish forces. On October 8, Turkey, a member of the US-NATO bloc which hosts a massive US air base at Incirlik – hosting some 5,000 Air Force personnel, tactical nuclear weapons and used to fly sorties over Syria – launched a new military invasion of northern Syria dubbed Peace Spring, which began with airstrikes on positions of Kurdish units. The Syrian Arab Republic branded the operation, part of the old imperialist divide-and-rule of the Middle East on an ethnic and religious basis, as aggression. The Syrian Kurdish forces and the Syrian Arab Army swiftly launched a counter-offensive to block the Turkish advance. Continue reading
Tag Archives: Israel
By KATHERINE BARNETT
Graduates of Unit 8200, a technology-focused division within Israel’s military, are involved in major spying controversies. Continue reading
And Gideon Levy, Haaretz correspondent, was there to witness it and ask uncomfortable questions about the past
NUREMBERG, Germany (May 3) – N. dons the black wool balaclava he always wears during operational activity. Only his dark eyes are visible. Diego’s jaws are also bound by a black muzzle. N. is an Israeli soldier who lives in Mitzpeh Adi in the Jezreel Valley and serves in Oketz, the Israel Defense Forces’ canine special forces unit. Diego is his dog – a Belgian dog that was trained in Germany. N. barks out his orders in German. “Sitz!” he commands, and Diego sits down submissively next to his master. Continue reading
By Ali Abunimah
Reporters Without Borders is facing sharp criticism for accepting a prize from a regime that murders journalists. Continue reading
MEMO (January 21) – In a blow to Israel, a British high court has ordered World-Check, a subsidiary of Reuters, to pay compensation and offer an apology to a pro-Palestine organisation listed as a terrorist group on its global online database.
A two-year legal battle concluded with World-Check offering a public apology in open court and a legal settlement of $13,000 plus legal costs to Majed Al-Zeer, the chairman of the Palestinian Return Centre (PRC), for classifying them as “terrorists”. Continue reading
By M. K. Bhadrakumar*
(April 11) – The United Nations Security Council turned down a compromise resolution on Syria, proposed by Sweden and seconded by Russia seeking investigation on the alleged chemical attack in Douma. Five countries supported the resolution with two permanent members – United States and Britain – opposing it. Earlier, a resolution on the same lines which was supported by Russia and China was also opposed by the US and Britain.
This is a significant political and diplomatic victory for Russia insofar as only two other countries joined the US and Britain to oppose the Swedish resolution. Six countries abstained. Continue reading
Washington’s plan for regime change in Damascus has failed. Albeit it has not gone the way that the US and Israel have desired, it can be said using the geopolitical language of Israeli and US planners and strategists that Syria has been “rolled back.” This does not mean Syria will stay in this “rolled-back” state statically.
In Iraq, the federal government has come out victorious and pushed back the so-called “Islamic State” and demands have started for a withdrawal of US forces. In the Levant, the Palestinians have managed to form a national unity government that will change the equation of talks between the Palestinians and Israel whereas Hezbollah and its political partners in Lebanon are stronger than ever. While in Yemen, the Houthis or Ansarallah have been able to repel the Saudis.
The US and its allies are the ones in the bigger geopolitical picture that are being “rolled back” steadily. In this context, Washington is now turning to the strategic depth of Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, the Houthi, and the Palestinians. That strategic depth is the Islamic Republic of Iran. Continue reading