US, Saudi Arabia plan to destroy Syria: Report
This file photo shows a Syrian rebel firing a rocket propelled grenade during fighting in Homs
This file photo shows a Syrian rebel firing a rocket propelled grenade during fighting in Homs’ Hamidiyah neighborhood.
Tue May 15, 2012 3:49PM
The United States and Saudi Arabia have devised a new plan to destroy Syria after they did not reach their goals by creating unrest in the country for more than one year, Press TV reports.
According to the report, after the failure of all efforts to topple the Syrian regime, Washington and Riyadh are devising a new plan.
The plan has two goals, firstly to show that no peace will take place in Syria without the US consent, and secondly to tire out the Syrian government’s supporters to give their backing for the administration.
The US and Saudi Arabia have reached the conclusion that the Syrian army cannot be divided and that incumbent President Bashar Assad is in full control of the military. They also know the Syrian security has good control over the entire country even areas where the opposition sways influence.
Meanwhile, the report added, although the Syrian economy has weakened, because of the conflicts, it is rapidly recovering.
The US has organized several committees in order to implement the new plot in Syria, which include political, military, and security committees.
The political committee comprises US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as supervisor; Derek Chollet, as the executive manager; former US Ambassador to Syria Robert Ford; Fredrick Hoff as a member, and Jeffrey Feltman as the coordinator.
Feltman, according to the report, also controls another political group whose members include Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal, and Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim.
Feltman also oversees a Doha-based office for special security coordination in Syria. Its members include intelligence agencies of such countries as the US, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey, NATO, and Libya.
Former Saudi Ambassador to the US Bandar bin Sultan shares his experience in Syria with the group and Feltman reviews the gathered information.
The military committee includes Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Martin Dempsey, as the head, as well as Major General Charles Cleveland, and General Frank Gibb.
This group works with other groups, but has the final say on logistic aid to Syrian rebels, including volume of logistic aid and the kind of intelligence which should be provided to the Syrian opposition groups.
The security committee includes the representatives of 7-10 American intelligence agencies as well as US National Security Advisor Tom Donilon, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, and Director of the Central Intelligence Agency General David Petraeus.
There are several branches in the security committee whose mission is to draw up security plots and report on the situation in Syria to the head of the committee in addition to preparing reports on the US security strategy on the situation in Syria.
The main goals of that strategy include forcing Syria into submission to the US policies and preventing the Russians from securing a permanent foothold in Syria.
Other goals include breaking up Iran-Syria alliance by making the Syrian government take sides with the US instead of Iran or Russia, intensifying the psychological and propaganda war by the US as well as its regional and international allies, transferring democracy to Syria without confronting with the country or risking Israel’s natal security, and cutting Tehran’s connection with Syria and the Lebanese Hezbollah.
The plan will be implemented by direct military operations of voluntary battalions operating across Syria’s borders with neighboring countries and regions including Lebanon, Turkey, Jordan, Golan, Iraqi Kurdistan, as well as Iraq’s nomadic regions.
Launching guerilla warfare in the Syrian cities, special operations in areas under the control of the Syrian government (including bomb attacks), popular activities combined with paramilitary operations, and psychological war against Syria’s military and intelligence forces and people are other stages of the executive phase of the plan.
The report noted that Saudi intelligence has reached an agreement with US and Israeli security companies based in Geneva to increase armed conflicts in Syria without engaging other countries. The conflicts will be led by retired military and intelligence experts that are theoretically in agreement with al-Qaeda.
Meanwhile, the Americans are going to create small protected areas in Lebanon and use them as military training camps. These camps will be established by the US, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey to be used by al-Qaeda and the Syrian opposition. Some parts of Iraq, especially in Anbar Province and the Kurdistan region, which is ruled by Massoud Barzani, have been chosen for the purpose because Barzani is closely working with Israel’s intelligence agency, Mossad.
Saudi Arabia will, in the meantime, work on Syria’s big nomadic tribes most of which live around the city of Deir ez-Zor and in the Syrian Desert which extends up to Homs.
The Lebanese government is also under pressure from Feltman’s assistant, Elizabeth Dale, to release 238 Wahhabi militants who used to be members of such rebels groups as Fathul Islam and Jund al-Sham.
Syria has been experiencing unrest since mid-March 2011 and more than 6,000 police forces, army troops, security forces and pro-government people have been killed in the unrest.
Syria extremists financed by private Gulf donors carried out mass killings – HRW
Published time: October 11, 2013 11:21
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Free Syrian Army fighters dig trenches at the Jabal al-Akrad area in Syria’s northwestern Latakia province, September 4, 2013 (Reuters / Khattab Abdulaa)
Free Syrian Army fighters dig trenches at the Jabal al-Akrad area in Syria’s northwestern Latakia province, September 4, 2013 (Reuters / Khattab Abdulaa)
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Conflict, Military, Politics, Syria, UN
At least 190 people were killed and more than 200 taken hostage by Syrian rebels financed by private Gulf donors in an August 4 military offensive in the Latakia governorate, according to a Human Rights Watch report.
At least 67 of the victims executed had lived in government-aligned Alawite villages, HRW said in its report, “You Can Still See Their Blood,” released Friday, which saw the events as the first evidence of planned crimes against humanity perpetrated by opposition forces.
The killings took place when President Bashar Assad’s forces were overwhelmed by the militants, who then proceeded to enter the 10 Alawite villages nearby, sometimes rounding up and executing entire families, while taking others hostage.
Torture and decapitations were also testament to the aggravated nature of the military offensive, proof of which was gathered by HRW through reports, witness statements, hospital records and materials recorded by the rebels themselves.
HRW’s Syria and Lebanon researcher, Lana Fakih, told Reuters that “homes were destroyed and burned. Most villagers had not returned.” She spoke to Hassan Shebli, whose elderly wife and disabled 23-year-old son were gunned down and buried next to his home, as he found upon his return to his village. The assailants took videos and posed with their victims before the killings.
According to the human rights watchdog, the nature, scale and coordination of the abuses and killings elevate them to the status of crimes against humanity. Acting Middle East director at HRW, Joe Stork, explained that “these abuses were not the actions of rogue fighters…this operation was a coordinated, planned attack on the civilian population in these Alawite villages.”
A view inside a damaged house after what activists said was an air raid by forces loyal to Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad in Salma town, Latakia governorate August 16, 2013 (Reuters / Khattab Abdulaa)
The attacks were found to have been planned and carried out by five distinct groups, including the Al- Qaeda-linked Jabhat al-Nusra and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, as well as jihadists originating from outside Syria.
However, the broader offensive, which lasted until August 18, was thought to include 20 distinct groups.
The operation was thwarted by government forces on that day, after regaining control of the area.
Although the report could not confirm the presence of fighters from the Western-backed Free Syrian Army, the force’s commander, Salim Idriss, posted a video a week after the Latakia attacks in which he claimed the FSA participated in the operation “to a great extent.”
Other groups boasted about their exploits in their own recordings, used by HRW to corroborate its findings, although the rebels themselves also recounted the offensive to correspondents from Reuters, claiming to have killed about 200 people.
However, not all the groups admitted to the killings. A member of the Sunni Ahrar al-Asham militia claimed that his fighters only shoot in self-defense, although the group was among the five that were found to have participated in the Latakia killings.
The Syrian National Coalition’s spokesman, Khaled Saleh, also condemned the attacks and said that if any abuses by rebels associated with the coalition were found to have happened in Latakia, the perpetrators would be brought to justice.
“We have previously committed ourselves to applying these rules on all the brigades that work for us and we will hold accountable, after investigation and fair trial, all those responsible for violations against human rights or international laws. The incidents in Latakia are not an exception and we will treat them as we treated previous case,” Saleh said in a written statement to Reuters.
Smoke rises after what activists said was shelling by forces loyal to Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad in the village of Dourit, in Latakia countryside August 17, 2013 (Reuters / Khattab Abdulaa)
Nonetheless, dozens of witness accounts from the province remain, together with footage shot by rebels, as a gruesome reminder of the executions carried out on August 4. Returning residents reported finding the bodies of loved ones strewn around the streets, lying next to their homes, as well as charred corpses lying in mass graves.
The organization also wished to point out that the report is by no means a move away from scrutinizing the Syrian government’s own human rights abuses – including sectarian cluster bombings of Sunni areas in May, as reported By UN officials.
The report proposes that the UN Security Council imposes an embargo on supplying arms to all sides implicated in the systematic abuse of human rights and the carrying out of planned attacks, which is classified as a crime against humanity. The organization also proposed referring all transgressions to the International Criminal Court in The Hague.
Stork, HRW’s Middle East chief, said: “Syrian victims of war crimes and crimes against humanity have waited too long for the Security Council to send a clear message that those responsible for horrible abuses will be held to account.”
“The ICC referral is long overdue,” Stork said.
The civil war, now in its third year, has claimed the lives of more than 100,000 people, according to UN estimates. Many experts fear that the sectarian nature and conflicting interests of the rebel groups involved are exacerbated by outside funding, and are turning Syria into a hotbed of extremism drifting further away from any resolution that outside actors may have planned for it.
The Army of Islam; Saudi Arabia’s Greatest Export
By Phil Greaves
October 04, 2013 “Information Clearing House – Recent developments regarding “rebel” groups inside Syria have shed further light on the ideologies and political aims of the militants waging war upon the Syrian state.
On the 24th September, under the moniker of the “Islamist Alliance”, 11 of the largest and most recognisable rebel brigades – a mix of supposed “moderate Islamists” such as Liwa al-Tawhid, the largest “FSA”-branded brigade in Aleppo, alongside more hardline Salafi/Jihadi brigades such as Ahrar al-Sham, and Al Qaeda ideologues Jahbat al-Nusra – released a joint statement denouncing the western-backed expatriates of the “National Coalition” (NC), along with its equally impotent military arm, the “Supreme Military Council” (SMC). Following this statement of intent, on the 29th of September, up to 50 rebel groups operating primarily in the area of Damascus merged to form Jaish al-Islam (Army of Islam). The Damascus merger also included a wide-ranging demographic of militant groups, from the supposed “moderate”, to overt Salafist hardliners. Jaish al-Islam is dominated by Liwa al-Islam, a large rebel group formerly of “FSA” branding, and led by Saudi-backed Zahran Alloush. Liwa al-Islam were also a signatory to the aforementioned statement of denunciation toward the western-backed political opposition.
These announcements have effectively put-to-bed the western propagated myth that was the “Free Syrian Army”. Militant groups the west ostensibly touted as “secular moderates” yearning for “freedom and democracy” from a tyrannical regime; have now openly declared their Salafi/Jihadi fundamentalist ideology, with the ultimate aim of creating a Syrian state ruled by Islamic law.
Already, these announcements are being portrayed as an attempt by Saudi Arabia – yes, ever tolerant and inclusive Wahhabi-preaching Saudi Arabia – and other leading Salafi factions supporting the insurgency to steer “vetted, or moderate Salafi” rebels away from the Al Qaeda aligned groups; particularly the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), who are now portrayed as simply “foreign jihadists” and have become the leading fall-guy in Western and Gulf media for every atrocity committed by the rebels. This false perception has been built as a result of a Western and Gulf initiated public relations campaign to “moderate” the image of the Salafi/Jihadi fundamentalists (as well as those more inclined to basic criminality, killing, and destruction) who may be more willing to meet the requirements of their Gulf donors and the United States. Yet, contrary to this divisive narrative, the same “moderate” Salafi’s who are now supposedly being encouraged to disassociate from their Al Qaeda affiliates have happily fought alongside – more often than not as a junior partner – the West’s supposed “number one enemy” (AQ) since the insurgency began in 2011.
In further contrast to the aforementioned “Awakening” narrative, Jabhat al-Nusra (JaN) – the Syrian branch of Al Qaeda ideologues – are still very much in the mix. Although various pundits and analysts have made efforts to publicise tensions between ISIS and JaN, the two groups still share a similar Jihadist ideology and cooperate in key areas, particularly on paramilitary operations; as do the hardline Salafi groups such as Ahrar Al-Sham, who in turn fully cooperate with the western friendly “moderates” forming the backbone of Jaish al-Islam. In the recent ISIS takeover of the “FSA” held town of Azaz from the western-friendly Northern Storm brigade (of John McCain fame), Liwa al-Tahwid quickly offered to broker a ceasefire and acted as interlocutor between the two warring factions. ISIS in turn, rejected any “FSA” authority and have since taken control of the town – not that Liwa al-Tahwid could have stopped them anyway. These events directly contradict the notion that the new “Army of Islam” is in any rush to disassociate, let alone be able to wage war upon the ISIS or its extremist affiliates. Moreover, the leader of Jaish al-Islam, Zahran Alloush, publicly disowned his own “captain” after he warned ISIS there would be open conflict if they “continued this chaos”. The leader claimed that the comments were “dangerous” and designed to “cause strife between muslims”.
Furthermore, in a recent interview with Al Jazeera, Alloush, free of his “moderate” chains, lets loose on his ideals for a future Syria, in which he aspires to resurrect the Umayyad Empire (2nd Islamic Caliphate with Syria at its core and Damascus as its capital), and “cleanse” Damascus of “Majous” (pejorative Arabic term for Iranians) “Rafideh” (Shi’ites) and “Nusayris” (Alawites). Rebel leaders openly espousing sectarian rhetoric has been a running theme throughout the conflict; in line with this trend, Alloush’s statement can be taken as a clear indication that his new “Jaish al-Islam” is not in the least bit concerned with abiding by a western-friendly moderate image. Alloush, like the majority of rebel leaders, is a fundamentalist Salafist, who looks on at the minorities of Syria as kafir (unbelievers) who must submit to his interpretation of Salafi Islam or be killed.
The western/Gulf media narrative surrounding this new “Islamist Alliance” is a re-hash of failed PR campaigns of the past, which attempted to mitigate the inherent fundamentalist ideologies of the insurgents waging war upon the Syrian state. In stark contrast to the Caliphate-inspired visions held by the majority of rebel leaders, Syria has been a pluralistic secular society for decades, the majority of its Sunni muslim population are conservative and have coexisted peacefully alongside the many other religions and ethnic minorities that make up Syria’s diverse society, history, and culture. The people of Syria do not aspire to a Saudi sponsored Salafi/Wahhabi leadership or doctrine of law. Contrary to the popular narrative emerging in western and Gulf media that this new force will represent an indigenous “moderate Islamist” coalition capable of taking on the foreign elements and Al Qaeda, the majority of Syrians will be repelled by the sectarian language and ideologies of Zohran Alloush; his groups overt affiliations and pandering to Al Qaeda ideologues; and his “Army of Islam”.
Considering the above context, the narrative of home-grown Salafis somehow being more amenable to the Syrian population than their ISIS/JaN fundamentalist colleagues becomes even less tenable. Alloush’s formation of Jaish al-Islam, alongside the “Islamist Alliance” denunciation of the western-backed political opposition, show a marked shift of the insurgency further toward the Al Qaeda ideologues fighting the Syrian regime, not further away from them.
Phil Greaves blogs at http://notthemsmdotcom.wordpress.com/
Excellent video! Well done!
The plan is to take Syria now and then Iran, the same players will move on to other zones creating internal chaos and being payed by the West….
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