Category Archives: Turkey

The Fake War on ISIS: US and Turkey Escalate in Syria, by Eric Draitser

Source: New Eastern Outlook

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It is late July 2015, and the media is abuzz with the news that Turkey will allow US jets to use its bases to bomb Islamic State (ISIS) targets in Syria. There is much talk about how this development is a “game-changer,” and how this is a clear escalation of the much ballyhooed, but more fictional than real, US war on ISIS: the terror organization that US intelligence welcomed as a positive development in 2012 in their continued attempts to instigate regime change against the Syrian government led by Bashar al-Assad.

The western public is told that “This is a significant shift…It’s a big deal,” as a US military official told the Wall Street Journal. What the corporate media fail to mention, however, is the fact that Turkey has been, and continues to be, a central actor in the war in Syria and, consequently, in the development and maintenance of ISIS. So, while Washington waxes poetic about stepping up the fight against the terror group, and lauds the participation of its allies in Ankara, the barely concealed fact is that Turkey is merely further entrenching itself in a war that it has fomented.

Of equal importance is the simple fact that a “war on ISIS” is merely a pretext for Turkey’s military engagement in Syria and throughout the region. Not only does Turkey’s neo-Ottoman revanchist President Erdogan want to flex his military muscles in order to further the regime change agenda in Syria, he also is using recent tragic events as political and diplomatic cover for waging a new aggressive war against the region’s Kurds, especially Turkey’s longtime foe the Kurdish Workers Party (PKK).

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KOS, BODRUM, DESPERATE REFUGEES AND A DYING CHILD, by Andre Vltchek

The collapsing US Empire has left in its path of chaos an increasing global refugee crisis. What were once stable, growing and promising countries have been reduced to hollow versions of their former selves.

Andre gives us the story of one boy who is just one among millions being affected in our world today.

AE

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These lucky few Syrians just given papers to go to Athens
these lucky few Syrians just given papers to go to Athens

Para gliders are flying over the stunning emerald sea. Summer hordes are descending on a Greek island of Kos from all corners of increasingly aggressive European Union. On the faces of visitors, there seems to be no regret, no shame, that Europe just raped and humiliated Greece, forcing its government to cancel democracy, instead succumbing to dictate of the mighty Germany and other dictatorial powers.

Tourists are busy frying themselves, stuffing their stomachs with seafood and boozing up in countless cafes, bars and restaurants of the old city. Hotels and eateries are packed. It is yet another hot and sunny day. Crisis? What crises? Yes, it is somewhere… there, maybe in Athens, or maybe just outside the city center.

A few minutes away, in a local hospital, which is part of Greek collapsing national healthcare system; an Iraqi child is suffering, perhaps dying, from cancer. He is only 3 years old. His mother most likely passed away trying to reach Kos.

“We found him in a park”, explains Hara, a receptionist from Triton Hotel. “He looked terribly sick. We took him to the hospital, but there, nobody wanted to do anything. We had to scream and demand that this poor child would be attended. They put several IV tubes into his tiny body, and then… nothing else. We called Medicine Sans Frontiers in Athens, but they said they couldn’t deal with such a complicated case. We have no idea what to do. If action is not taken immediately, he will most likely die.”

refugees in Kos
refugees in Kos

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Logistics 101: Where Does ISIS Get Its Guns?, by Tony Cartalucci

Tony Cartalucci has an amazing knack for not just identifying the deep pulse of the matter when it comes to regional conflicts but in effect he addresses them in a manner that simply checkmates the flawed hypocritical narrative which is floated around by the self proclaimed custodians of humanity, the dishonorable western governments.

Read his latest on the heart of the matter about the fake Caliphate that never was.

AE

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June 10, 2015 (Tony Cartalucci – NEO) – Since ancient times an army required significant logistical support to carry out any kind of sustained military campaign. In ancient Rome, an extensive network of roads was constructed to facilitate not only trade, but to allow Roman legions to move quickly to where they were needed, and for the supplies needed to sustain military operations to follow them in turn.

The other half of the war is logistics. Without a steady stream of supplies, armies no matter how strong or determined will be overwhelmed and defeated. What explains then ISIS' fighting prowess and the immense logitical networks it would need to maintain it?
The other half of the war is logistics. Without a steady stream of supplies, armies no matter how strong or determined will be overwhelmed and defeated. What explains then ISIS’ fighting prowess and the immense logitical networks it would need to maintain it?

In the late 1700’s French general, expert strategist, and leader Napoleon Bonaparte would note that, “an army marches on its stomach,” referring to the extensive logistical network required to keep an army fed, and therefore able to maintain its fighting capacity. For the French, their inability to maintain a steady supply train to its forces fighting in Russia, and the Russians’ decision to burn their own land and infrastructure to deny it from the invading forces, ultimately defeated the French.

Nazi Germany would suffer a similar fate when it too overextended its logical capabilities during its invasion of Russia amid Operation Barbarossa. Once again, invading armies became stranded without limited resources before being either cut off and annihilated or forced to retreat.

And in modern times during the Gulf War in the 1990’s an extended supply line trailing invading US forces coupled with an anticipated clash with the bulk of Saddam Hussein’s army halted what was otherwise a lighting advance many mistakenly believed could have reached Baghdad had there been the political will. The will to conquer was there, the logistics to implement it wasn’t.

The lessons of history however clear they may be, appear to be entirely lost on an either supremely ignorant or incredibly deceitful troupe of policymakers and news agencies across the West.

ISIS’ Supply Lines

The current conflict consuming the Middle East, particularly in Iraq and Syria where the so-called “Islamic State” (ISIS) is operating and simultaneously fighting and defeating the forces of Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, and Iran, we are told, is built upon a logistical network based on black market oil and ransom payments.

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Turkey, Terrorism, and the Global Proxy War, by Eric Draitser

Protesters shout anti-government slogans during a demonstration at Taksim Square in Istanbul

While the world’s attention has been fixed on France in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo killings, the subsequent manhunt, and the political fallout from the incident, a number of important news items have quietly been pushed off the front pages of the world’s major newspapers, and out of the lead segments of television news programs all over the globe. In Nigeria, Boko Haram reemerges with a vengeance, committing one of the worst atrocities in the recent history of the region. In Syria and Iraq, the war against the Islamic State continues unabated. In Greece, an all-important election that could have dire implications for the future of the European Union is set to take place.

And quietly, with almost no fanfare from international media, reportssurfaced from China indicating that Chinese authorities had arrested at least ten Turkish suspects alleged to have organized and facilitated the illegal border crossings of a number of Uighur [Muslim ethnic group in Western China] extremists. It has further been revealed that the Uighur extremists were planning to travel to Syria, Afghanistan, and Pakistan to train and fight with fellow jihadis.

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Crossing the Bridge From Eurasia to NATOstan, by Pepe Escobar

Seen from Asia, the ghastly crisis in Europe looks and feels like a galaxy away. So as I was back from the Middle Kingdom to the austerity-ravaged, stagnated collection of dysfunctions also known as NATOstan, I decided to stop midway, in the City of Cities, for a moment of reflection.

ISTANBUL, December 31 (Sputnik) — I had no agenda other than to connect the future (the Eurasian Century) with the past (the crumbling European Union dream) via God’s favorite abode, the City of Cities; Constantinople, the New Rome. Just a Eurasia pilgrim on the move, absorbing those flows coming from the Balkans and ancient glorious Thrace; from the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara through the Bosphorus; and from chaotic, teeming peripheries where gleaming towers coexist with miserable huts.

Morning was a question of being immersed, between myth and history, in the thundering silence of centuries of stony sleep. Istanbul should be read as a scroll – beyond methodological cunning and stylistic ornaments. Jean Cocteau wrote that Constantinople was a city born in purple, a city of blood, sunsets and fires. Casanova wrote that as Constantine arrived by the sea, seduced by the sight of Byzantium, he instantly proclaimed, “This is the seat of the empire of the world.” So, in style, he left the seat of the old empire, Rome, for good.

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How Vladimir Putin Upset NATO’s Strategy, by Thierry Meyssan

Russia is reacting to the economic war which NATO is waging against her in the way she would have reacted in a conventional war. She allowed herself to be hit by unilateral “sanctions” in order to better lead the opponent to a battleground of her own choosing. Simultaneously, she has signed agreements with China to safeguard her future and with Turkey to disrupt NATO. As long ago, against France or Germany, her initial defeat could be the guarantee of her victory in the end.

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At the annual summit on security organized by the Bertelsmann Foundation and NATO in Munich in 2007, President Vladimir Putin had stressed that the interest of Western Europeans was not only overseas but also and especially with Russia. Since then, he has continued to try to build economic relations, including the construction of the North Stream pipeline under the leadership of former German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder. For its part, the United States has done everything to prevent this rapprochement, including the organization of the Kiev coup and the South Stream pipeline sabotage.

According to the Atlanticist press, Russia would have been severely impacted by the unilateral “sanctions” – in reality acts of economic war – imposed on the occasion of the annexation of Crimea to the Federation or of the destruction of the Malaysia Airlines Boeing and by lower oil prices. The ruble has lost 40% of its value, wasted investments in the South Stream gas pipeline cost $ 4.5 billion and the food embargo has cost $ 8.7 billion. The Atlanticist media assures us that Russia is now definitely ruined and isolated politically.

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Energy Aggression Against Russia is Expanding, by Peter Lvov

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During his recent trip to Ankara, President Vladimir Putin said on December 1 that the construction of the South Stream gas pipeline project for Southern Europe would be terminated due to the negative position of both Bulgaria and Brussels. Instead of that, it was proposed to build a gas pipeline through the territory of Turkey to its western borders with the EU, where it will be possible to create a kind of a “gas hub” for the countries of Southern and South-Eastern Europe. Naturally, this has caused a nervous reaction of some Europeans. It is one thing to bluff to the tune of the Americans, while it’s quite another to lose an opportunity to purchase gas directly from Russia, bypassing another difficult transit country – Turkey, instead of unreliable Ukraine. What we are talking about here means to “bargain one trouble for another”.

And the fact that Ankara is not the easiest partner for Brussels is understandable; after all, it was EU that for decades stubbornly refused Turkish membership in the EU. At the same time they are actively involving Turkey in NATO plans in relation to Iraq and Syria. And almost immediately the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Ms. Federica Mogherini, arrived as a head of the representative delegation to meet with President Erdogan in an attempt to convince him to refuse from engaging in President Vladimir Putin’s gas project proposal.

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Putin Pipeline Moves and EU Stupidity, by William Engdahl

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South Stream, the $45 billion project to deliver Russian natural gas via underwater pipeline through the Black Sea to Bulgaria and on to other Balkan and southern European markets, is dead. Russian President Vladimir Putin made the death pronouncement on December 1, during a trip to Turkey to meet Turkish President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan. It has major geopolitical and economic consequences for the EU.

As Putin explained, “If Europe doesn’t want to realize this, then it means it won’t be realized. We will redirect the flow of our energy resources to other regions of the world. We couldn’t get necessary permissions from Bulgaria, so we cannot continue with the project. We can’t make all the investment just to be stopped at the Bulgarian border,” Putin said. “Of course, this is the choice of our friends inEurope.”

The Russian President didn’t waste a minute to show how he plans that redirection. The real loser is not Russia, but the EU who managed yet again to shoot themselves in the foot by their buckling under to Washington pressure from Victoria Nuland’s State Department and the Obama Administration hawks. The South Stream would have provided secure delivery to southern EU countries including Bulgaria, Hungary, Austria, Italy, Croatia and also Serbia. It would avoid the current transit pipelines running through Ukraine. Similarly, to avoid a repeat of the US-induced Ukrainian disruptions of Russian gas to the EU in 2009, Russia and Germany agreed the construction of Nord Stream, also avoiding Ukraine.

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The Importance Of The Cancellation Of South Stream, by Alexander Mercouris

The reaction to the cancellation of the Sound Stream project has been a wonder to behold and needs to be explained very carefully.

In order to understand what has happened it is first necessary to go back to the way Russian-European relations were developing in the 1990s.

Briefly, at that period, the assumption was that Russia would become the great supplier of energy and raw materials to Europe. This was the period of Europe’s great “rush for gas” as the Europeans looked forward to unlimited and unending Russian supplies. It was the increase in the role of Russian gas in the European energy mix which made it possible for Europe to run down its coal industry and cut its carbon emissions and bully and lecture everyone else to do the same.

However the Europeans did not envisage that Russia would just supply them with energy. Rather they always supposed this energy would be extracted for them in Russia by Western energy companies. This after all is the pattern in most of the developing world. The EU calls this “energy security” – a euphemism for the extraction of energy in other countries by its own companies under its own control.

It never happened that way. Though the Russian oil industry was privatised it mostly remained in Russian hands. After Putin came to power in 2000 the trend towards privatisation in the oil industry was reversed. One of the major reasons for western anger at the arrest of Khodorkovsky and the closure of Yukos and the transfer of its assets to the state oil company Rosneft was precisely because is reversed this trend of privatisation in the oil industry.

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Exit South Stream, enter Turk Stream

Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, and President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the concluding news conference in Ankara. (RIA Novosti/Sergey Guneev)
Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, and President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the concluding news conference in Ankara. (RIA Novosti/Sergey Guneev)

So the EU “defeated” Putin by forcing him to cancel the South Stream pipeline. Thus ruled Western corporate media. Nonsense. Facts on the ground spell otherwise.

This “Pipelineistan” gambit will continue to send massive geopolitical shockwaves all across Eurasia for quite some time. In a nutshell, a few years ago Russia devised Nord Stream – fully operational – and South Stream – still a project – to bypass unreliable Ukraine as a gas transit nation. Now Russia devised a new deal with Turkey to bypass the “non-constructive” (Putin’s words) approach of the European Commission (EC).

Background is essential to understand the current game. Five years ago I was following in detail Pipelineistan’s ultimate opera – the war between rival pipelines South Stream and Nabucco. Nabucco eventually became road kill. South Stream may eventually resurrect, but only if the EC comes to its senses (don’t bet on it.)

The 3,600 kilometer long South Stream should be in place by 2016, branching out to Austria and the Balkans/Italy. Gazprom owns 50 percent of it – along with Italy’s ENI (20 percent), French EDF (15 percent) and German Wintershall, a subsidiary of BASF (15 percent). As it stands these European energy majors are not exactly beaming – to say the least. For months Gazprom and the EC were haggling about a solution. But in the end Brussels predictably succumbed to its own.

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