This series of five articles was originally written in January and February this year by Ghassan Kadi. We are publishing it today on the occasion of the centenary of Lebanon to enlighten readers on the historical role played by French colonialism in the sectarian divide-and-rule strategy of the Levant (Greater Syria) and the internal forces in motion at that time and their role today. France and Britain together separated the region into Lebanon, Syria, Palestine, Transjordan and Iraq by secret agreement (Sykes-Picot) during World War I, which they received following the war with the defeat of Ottoman Turkey and Germany as “trustee”. The series also brings out the character of the internal institutions established in Lebanon on September 1, 1920 by the armed forces of France. Continue reading
Tag Archives: More articles by Ghassan Kadi
France and other powers, including Canada, are exploiting the Beirut port disaster. Their recipe is “white man’s burden.” Macron of France is in the forefront. He presupposes that the people of Lebanon are not capable of exercising their sovereignty, that they cannot exercise control over their lives themselves and that there is a need for a power standing above them, usurping all that belongs to them and giving nothing to them in return. This is the notion of a “benevolent dictator” or of the “divine right of kings”, notions needed by the plutocracy, those who claim that they are destined to be the “trustees” of the people, because they alone consider themselves capable of ruling over the people.
By GHASSAN KADI
The intriguing twists and turns following the catastrophic explosion at Beirut’s Sea Port have thus far had international repercussions, beginning with the visit of French President Marcon to Beirut just three days after the disaster; a visit that could hardly be classified as a visit of a foreign head of state to another country.
Marcon did not go to Lebanon just to meet with Lebanese President Aoun, even though the two did meet. Continue reading
Ghassan Kadi’s thoughts about the crisis facing Lebanon
(August 10) – Most of the current instability in the Levant and the whole Middle East is inadvertently and inadvertently a result of the obsession about Israel’s security; both from the Israeli as well as the American sides. That said, many of the region’s problems are deep-rooted and go back to times before Israel was created and before America had any influence. Continue reading
Ghassan Kadi’s initial thoughts about the Beirut Port explosions
(August 5) – I have mourned Beirut time and time again, but with all the cities I have lived in, Beirut will always be my favourite. After all, how can I ever forget its hustle and bustle before the infamous fifteen year long civil war that started on Sunday the 13th of April 1975? I was a student back then, with very limited financial resources, but back then, you didn’t have to be rich to enjoy the rich lifestyle of Beirut. Continue reading
GHASSAN KADI on a potentially huge situation brewing in Libya that barely makes the news
The ‘War on Syria’ is far from being over, and it will continue until all foreign forces illegally present on Syrian soil retreat; either willingly, or defeated.
And even though the American presence in Syria has no clear and realistic political purpose other than wreaking havoc and making it hard for Russia to help reach a decisive victory, in a twist of fate, the focus of the Russo-American conflict in the region may soon move away from Syria. Continue reading
GHASSAN KADI’s thoughts on anti-Syrian rhetoric coming from sectors of society in Lebanon.*
The traditional Lebanese Left and Right and their followers are united in venting out their anger against the alleged illegal transport of fuel and subsidized wheat flour from Lebanon to Syria. According to their reports, which I haven’t been able to confirm the validity of, truck loads of the above are being stolen away from the Lebanese people who are suffering immensely under rising high costs of living and devastating financial ruin, and transported to Syria to “support the Assad regime.” Continue reading
By Ekaterina Blinova
On 22 April, the foreign ministers of Russia, Iran, and Turkey held a trilateral video-conference on the situation in Syria within the framework of the Astana format. International observers have explained why the group has succeeded in maintaining the balance of interests in the region and what is behind the growing divisions within jihadi ranks.
The Astana group, a trilateral format comprising Russia, Turkey and Iran created in 2017 to tackle the Syrian crisis, acknowledged on Wednesday that the 5 March 2020 ceasefire deal had facilitated the de-escalation of the situation in Idlib, following Turco-Syrian clashes earlier this year, despite Hayat Tahrir al-Sham’s* attempts to obstruct it. Continue reading
In this article Ghassan Kadi, our Middle East analyst, looks at the historical reasons that put Syria in a vulnerable position with Turkey. According to his analysis, the buck stops at the long forgotten issue of the Cilician Gates. Ghassan has been warning about this issue for some years now.
The root of the military conflict in Idlib is not something that arose from contemporary times. And with all due respect to Sputnik, the cause did not start 80 years ago.
Actually, the seed of the conflict was sown five centuries ago. Its germination could have been prevented a century ago. However, the colonialists had other plans. They implemented them when Syria was weak and unable to exercise its own right of self-determination. Continue reading
By GHASSAN KADI
TSB Middle East Analyst
(February 14) – It is hard to say if Erdogan is running out of choices, friends, time, or all of the above; and his stands on various issues and the contradictions he ploughs through are making his situation increasingly untenable. Continue reading
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
By GHASSAN and INTIBAH KADI*
The “War on Syria” has had many unintended twists and turns that were unforeseeable at the time it began. The plotters had no reason to believe they were going to lose, and the defenders had no option other than doing all they could and risk and sacrifice all that was dear and precious.
However, as frontlines are now being redrawn in Syria in preparation for the final showdown, a recapitulation of the events of the last eight years reveals that Syria did in fact end up having a revolution, but the group that embarked on the initial alleged revolution, the Free Syria Army (FSA) is nowhere to be seen. Continue reading
This post is about an engrossing film produced in 2015 by a Syrian-Lebanese film-maker, Olga Naccache*, of the war on Syria, now in its 7th year. I just came across it thanks to a post on Facebook by Intibah Kadi. It is over one hour long, with English subtitles. It is gripping and many times elegiac. The music is vibrant. Continue reading
GHASSAN KADI* discusses the issue of Decree No. 16 issued by the President of the Syrian Arab Republic, Bashar al-Assad, which has seen the country in the past few weeks engulfed in heated arguments, misinformation, confusion and worrying signs of increasing sectarianism.
(October 4) – Much has been said around Presidential Decree No. 16, but in reality, nothing has been said about its actual contents and context. When I began reading criticisms of it, they gave the impression that the Decree is handing over the Executive authority of Syria to the Clergy. Continue reading
By GHASSAN and INTIBAH KADI
The only thing that is clear about this seemingly upcoming battle is the fact that Idlib has been “used” as a sink hole and dumping ground for all anti-government/anti-Syria terrorists. Such a status quo cannot last. Continue reading
By GHASSAN KADI*
Russia has put herself, for better or for worse, in a position that requires a huge role in the Levant; perhaps much bigger than what Russia bargained for on the eve of the Russian “intervention” in Syria on the 28th of September 2015.
The initial Russian-led attack on ISIS in Syria was highly successful until a glitch was added to the picture when Turkey downed a Russian Su-24 a few weeks later in November 2015. Continue reading
(January 17) – The security zone America intends to establish in Syria is doomed to fail sooner or later. How can this assertion be made and what can it be based on? Well, two main things really; history and facts on the ground. Continue reading
During the evening of November 3, Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman (MBS) launched his “Night of the Long Knives” – a virtual coup d’état. It included the house arrest of 11 princes and four ministers and scores of other former government lackeys in political, security, and business spheres, not to overlook the freezing of up to 1,700 bank accounts worth $800 billion. This coup has serious regional and international implications.The next day, a missile headed toward Riyadh from Yemen, which the Saudis quickly called an act of war. The visiting prime minister of Lebanon, Saad Hariri, was placed under house arrest and forced to resign in a letter reportedly dictated by his hosts blaming Iran and the resistance organization Hezbollah for threatening the security of Lebanon; the Saudis called on expatriates to evacuate. In parallel, Israel launched new air strikes against Syria and the Trump regime escalated its offensive against Iran; the US ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley later in the week called for sanctions against Tehran, citing Saudi “evidence”. Iran has dismissed the claims as baseless, pointing to the Saudi air, sea and land blockade on Yemen as preventing any such weapons supply. Continue reading
This week Daniel Shapiro, a former US ambassador to Israel, wrote in the Haaretz newspaper that the Saudis were meddling yet again in Lebanese politics, forcing Hezbullah into greater political prominence, to provide the pretext for Israel to renew its confrontation with the Lebanese militia and thereby stoke a new war between Israel and Lebanon and Syria.
In his words: “Israel and Saudi Arabia are fully aligned in this regional struggle, and the Saudis cannot help but be impressed by Israel’s increasing assertiveness to strike at Iranian threats in Syria … When the moment of truth arrives, Israel’s allies, with the United States in the lead, should give it full backing.”
Politics in Lebanon itself is complex, largely due to the confessional system inherited from French colonialism. Ghassan Kadi gives a brief background on Saad Hariri and offers some thoughts on the reasons behind Hariri’s sudden resignation. With events in the region proceeding at a dizzying pace, and especially the news of arrests in Saudi Arabia, which happened after Ghassan wrote this article, some of the thoughts expressed may merely represent a snapshot in time as the landscape keeps changing, but essentially his article analyzes Saudi Arabia’s attempts to regain control over Lebanon. – TS
By TONY SEED
In the context of the offensive of the Trump regime against Iran and for domination of West Asia (Middle East), the CIA released on November 1 a “never-before-seen 19-page document,” as well as a 228-page “journal” ostensibly written by Osama Bin Laden as all U.S. and Canadian media (as directed by the U.S. government) are promoting. Continue reading
GHASSAN KADI* contemplates scenarios that may have repercussions on strategic alliances of the United States.
As the world sits and watches the horrors of the American elections, many non-Americans are relieved that they don’t have to choose between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton; and for obvious reasons.
Clinton comes from the old school of American politics; for bad or for worse. Her “reign”, if she makes it, will be a virtual continuation of the Obama administration. Even if she implements changes, and even if she decides to put boots on the ground, big time, somewhere on the globe, it is highly unlikely that she will surprise anyone in whatever she does and does not do. Continue reading
By GHASSAN KADI*
When the so-called “Arab Spring” took off, Saif Al-Islam Gaddafi, son of Muammar Gaddafi, made a televised speech to Libyans warning them, and the world, of what would happen should the central government in Tripoli fall apart. Continue reading
The war against ISIS | GHASSAN KADI* argues against self-serving dogma substituting as analysis, and for the renovation of Islam
Islam, real Islam, is a religion of piety, wisdom and peace, and Muslims, real Muslims are not terrorists. Even though all terrorists that have been caught involved in terrorism are “Muslims”, this does not give a blanket description of all Muslims as beings terrorists. Continue reading
“. . . it is the Syrian scorched ground that decides its destiny. . .”
Introduction by Ghassan Kadi*: This is an article that has been translated from Arabic by Intibah and Ghassan Kadi. It was published on Assafir (a Lebanese daily) on February 15 by SAMI KOLEIB. He is a renowned pro-Resistance Lebanese journalist. He has made great analyses over the last few years and Intibah and I had the pleasure of translating some of his work. In this article, he is articulating his views about the outcome of the huffing and puffing of Turkey and Saudi Arabia in regard to their threats of launching ground military operations in Syria. A highly recommended read.
By Sami Koleib | Translated by Ghassan and Intibah Kadi
(February 15) – For the Russia Prime Minister Dimitry Medvedev to say that the world is entering a cold war is to declare the status quo… and confirming what’s already confirmed. But to say it from Munich? This is the same place from which President Vladimir Putin began to stand up against Washington in his famous speech nearly eight years ago. And for Medvedev to mention the Russian Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962 to stop an American invasion is only a reminder of the new red lines for any land invasion perpetrated by the enemies of the Syrian President Bashar Al Assad in Syria’s north, and specifically to any Saudi-Turkish gamble with a NATO cover. The cold war is realistically under way; what’s new in it this time is that it is the Syrian scorched ground that decides its destiny… and it seems that various contacts made in the last few hours have focused on putting the situation under control and priorotizing on fighting terrorism. Continue reading
By GHASSAN KADI*
What started as a “War On Syria”, allowed to grow and fester unabated, fueled and sponsored by eighty three nations spearheaded by Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Israel and NATO and all pro-NATO nations, is undoubtedly coming to a head.
Geneva III seems dead in the water, just like Geneva I and II were. This time however, Syria and its allies are calling the shots, and they are playing the cat-and-mouse game, and why not? After all, the ball is in their court and it wasn’t easy coming. It’s the spoil of blood and sacrifice. Continue reading
By GHASSAN KADI*
The world has heard the Zionist rhetoric about the alleged ownership of Palestine and there is no point in repeating it herein. That said, some argue that God’s promise to Abraham was taken literally and out of context. After all, God is fair and loving, and a fair and loving God would not give unconditional privileges to offspring, regardless of whether they are virtuous or not. Continue reading
By GHASSAN KADI*
(November 22) – Love him or hate him, Erdogan has been a survivor; a hero for some, and a stick in the mud that would not go away for many more others. He has thus far managed to dodge many serious decisive moments, the last of which was the recent parliamentary elections that he won with flying colours despite the predictions of many analysts, including myself, that he was destined to lose abysmally. Continue reading
By GHASSAN KADI*
(November 4) – Erdogan’s AKP party has scored a monumental victory; not so much in terms of the lead in parliament though. As a matter of fact, it is a fairly narrow victory, but one that was least expected. What is monumental about it is the course that Turkey has set itself upon.
A victory for Erdogan perhaps, but for Turkey itself, the outcome of this election will probably take years and even decades until it becomes clear what the results truly meant for Turkey’s future and wellbeing. Continue reading
By GHASAN KADI, Introduction by TONY SEED
The Turkish election was held in an atmosphere of violence and chaos on November 1st. The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan regained its parliamentary majority.
“Many of you can see through the eyes of the media you chose to follow about the crisis in Syria. Many of you believe the over-rated propaganda that hundreds of channels or papers place out there meant to sway public opinion. But to understand the truth of a situation, you must first study the history of the situation. There lays the truth and lies in what is known as a media war. Understanding how Syria rose, and what she is going through right now is the most vital tool to fight with fact, not fiction.” | Three articles by GHASSAN KADI*