Israel-Syrian border tensions have soared in the five days since Russia and Syria stepped up their air strikes over rebel positions in southern Syria, drawing ever closer to the Israeli border. The raids are covering a wide radius from the town of Daraa on the Jordanian border up to Quneitra on the Golan. How to react if those raids actually reach the two borders is no doubt a burning topic at General Staff HQ in Tel Aviv and Amman.
Neither army wants a head-on collision close to their borders with the coalition of Russian, Syria, Iranian and Hizballah forces. However, the intensified air raids are putting large numbers of Syrian refugees to flight from their homes towards the Israeli and Jordanian borders. The Jordanian border area is in chaos. The kingdom’s army has seized the positions formerly held by Syrian rebel units to hold back the influx of refugees into Jordan. The rebels are dropping their weapons and fleeing in all directions in disarray.
By Wednesday night, no answers were forthcoming.
This is not surprising. When the Jordanian Chief of Staff, Lt. Gen. Mashal Al-Zaben was sent on a similar errand to Moscow a few days ago, he was given the runaround, told that, since the Syrian chief of staff happened to be in the Russian capital “by chance,” and since he is in charge of military operations in the border region, why not talk to him?
In fact, the Russians had deliberately flown him over from Syria.
On the assumption that Dr. Gold would fare no better than the Jordanian general, Israel may have taken matters into its own hands.
Three Israeli missiles reportedly struck Syrian military outposts on the road between Daraa and Damascus after Wednesday midnight, according to Syrian human rights monitors. The IDF declined to comment on this report, while the Syrian army and Hizballah deneied it.
If this report is true, it would mean that Israel’s patience is running out with the Russian-Syrian aerial campaign that threatens to open the door for Syrian, Iranian and Hizballah forces to take up positions on its northern border. The triple missile strike looks as though it was meant to draw a line in the sand against this happening.
Iraqi officials have lost track of "highly dangerous" radioactive material. Authorities are desperately tracking down the missing materials, and are worried that it may have fallen into the hands of Daesh (IS/Islamic State).
Weatherford is a US oilfield services company, and SGS is based in Istanbul.
"We are afraid the radioactive element will fall into the hands of Daesh," a senior security official with knowledge of the theft said, speaking on condition of anonymity. "They could simply attach it to explosives to make a dirty bomb."
[The next article is far deeper than we need to go in terms of prophecy watching - but it is fascinating to contemplate. The quotes below are just the introduction:]
In geopolitical analysis, when I examine a major political or economic development, it’s very important that I first look into myself, to feel if I’m blurring my analysis because of deep-felt personal wishes for a peaceful, more harmonious world, blurring the reality of a given nation or groups of nations. Similarly, if I take those malevolent patriarchs who dominate American and NATO policies today, I must be certain I know, not merely the surface of what an American President or Secretary of State might say on a given day. It can be a lie, a slick maneuver or it can be even honest. The work of any serious analyst is to sort out which it is, to go deeper, to “mine” the lode in order to see the real strategic implications.
Such is the case with finding out what is the real Washington policy—the economic and foreign policy today. For example, what is the real meaning and purpose behind the journey of the 92-year-old Henry Kissinger to Moscow to meet Vladimir Putin and others recently? What’s the real purpose of John Kerry when he appears to follow a policy more friendly towards Russia than, say, his Assistant Secretary Victoria Nuland or Secretary of Defense Ash Carter? Is it the voice of a significant faction within the foreign policy establishment that genuinely seeks a shift in Washington policy with Moscow from confrontation and war towards detente, diplomacy and a policy of peace and economic cooperation? What’s the real intent of the Roman Pope in wanting to come together with the Orthodox Patriarch Kirill of Moscow, the first such meeting between those two churches–east and west–since the Great Schism of 1054? Is that a positive step towards world peace or is it something ominous?
It’s a widespread notion, fostered by US and European mainstream and other media, even by media in Russia and China that Washington is in confused disarray, a Superpower or hegemon which has lost its bearings. Media analysts write of a policy clash or internal factional battle that renders any US action in destroying DAESH or ISIS in Syria and Iraq a ludicrous, bumbling joke.
From years of looking at US foreign policy, I’ve learned to bring a certain respect in to my assessment. The respect is not at all admiration but an appreciation that, after all, the world’s most powerful Superpower did not come to that position of power without extraordinary skills, cunning, a remarkable ability to lie convincingly, to deceive, to very precisely manipulate the weaknesses of their opponents.
That deception has been the hallmark of American foreign policy for the entire post-1945 period, as towards the Soviet Union of Mikhail Gorbachev in 1989, when Gorbachev trusted his American interlocutors who solemnly promised that the West would never advance NATO to the East. The deception is the hallmark of US economic policies since Bretton Woods in 1944 established the Dollar as supreme, and which destroyed any potential challenge to the domination of the US dollar as reserve currency—the most strategic of the American pillars of power aside from that of the US military.
In international politics, it’s unwise to believe your enemy is stupid. It can be fatal. Mistakes, of course, they continuously make, only to re-program and correct or push on another front in their obsession with world power and control.
More useful is to assume they have a well-thought-through strategy behind a veil of Machiavellian lies and deception, rather than to assume stupidity as our operating premise. So, amid a most incredible array of contradictory indications out of Washington, what’s going on between the actors in the war against Syria and the entire Middle East today, in February 2016?
If we look at current US policies in the Middle East, especially in Syria and in Iraq, and assume it is a very well-thought-out strategy to reach a specific, well-defined goal, the situation looks very different.
My current conclusion is that under a smokescreen of apparent policy confusion and incompetence on the side of Washington, of the Pentagon, of the State Department and their backers on Wall Street, there is a carefully-planned strategy to ignite a war in the oil-and-gas-rich Middle East that will dramatically alter the political and geopolitical oil map of the world. Yes, another war about oil like so many of the wars of the last century, a Century of War as one of my books calls it.
The Washington-Wall Street think tanks behind the coming change are orchestrating the actions of state actors in the Middle East who, blinded by their own greed or desire for empire, Ottoman or Saudi, see not that they are falling into a fatal trap.
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