Browsing: War and Terror

‘US President Donald Trump ignored reports from US intelligence that said they had no evidence Syria had used sarin to attack a rebel-held town, Pulitzer-winning investigative journalist Seymour Hersh says.

Hersh is most famous for exposing the My Lai Massacre and its cover-up during the Vietnam War. He also uncovered the abuse of prisoners by US personnel at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. In a report published by the German newspaper Die Welt on Sunday, he describes how the Trump administration mishandled the media frenzy after the Syrian bombing of the rebel-held town Khan Sheikhoun in April.

Trump chose to ignore reports compiled by American intelligence and the military that contradicted the prevailing media narrative accusing Damascus of using sarin gas to kill civilians, the report says, citing accounts by anonymous US military advisers. Instead, he ordered his military to prepare options for a response, which they did.’

Read more: Trump ignored intel, launched Tomahawks in Syria based on media – Pulitzer winner Seymour Hersh

‘The IDF struck two artillery launchers and an ammunition truck on the Syrian side of the border after “several Syrian projectiles” landed in Israeli territory without causing any casualties. A similar incident occurred in the same Golan Heights region on Saturday.

“In response to several Syrian projectiles launched towards Israel, IDF targeted 2 Syrian regime artillery positions & an ammunitions truck,” the Israel Defense Forces tweeted on their official feed on Sunday afternoon.

The tweet came three hours after the IDF said Syrian projectiles had “hit an open area in the northern Golan Heights,” while noting that “no injuries were reported.”

Earlier on Sunday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned that even shells reaching Israeli territory accidentally would be met with a swift retribution.’

Read more: Israel targets Syrian artillery positions & ammunitions truck in second incident in two days

‘Al-Qaeda attacked a Syrian Arab Army position in Madinat al-Baath (map) next to the Israel occupied Golan heights. Al-Qaeda requested Israeli fire-support by launching some mortars towards empty space in the Israel occupied area. The Israeli Defense Force accepted the request and destroyed two Syrian Arab Army tanks. Two Syrian soldiers were killed. The SAA held steady and the al-Qaeda attack on its position failed.

This was very easy to predict. Israel has supported al-Qaeda in the area since at least 2014. The al-Qaeda fire-request-by-mortar scheme has been in place for at least three years. In October 2014 the UN Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF), which back then still covered the area, reported to the UN Security Council:

On 23 June [2014], Israel targeted nine Syrian army positions with tank fire and air strikes after mortar fire from the Syrian side the previous day killed an Israeli civilian. Israel’s assessment is that most of these incidents are due to errant fire resulting from fighting in Syria. Israel said that armed opposition groups were probably responsible but that its forces fired on Syrian military positions to stress that Syria was responsible for security on its side of the ceasefire line.’

Read more: Israel’s Fire Support for Its Al-Qaeda Mercenaries Started Three Years Ago

‘Senior Israeli Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu believes the Israeli army should stop arresting Palestinians and execute them instead.

“It must execute them and leave no one alive,” Eliyahu wrote in a Facebook post Tuesday, according to Defend Democracy Press.

Eliyahu, the chief rabbi of the city of Safed, has a record of making racist remarks about Arabs and Muslims. He once said Israel should take “revenge” against Arabs, and that Palestinians, whom he once labeled enemies of Israel, must be “destroyed and crushed in order to end violence.”

“If they don’t stop after we kill 100, then we must kill 1,000,” Eliyahu told the Jerusalem Post in 2007. “And if they do not stop after 1,000, then we must kill 10,000. If they still don’t stop we must kill 100,000, even a million.”’

Read more: Senior Israeli Rabbi Calls for the Mass Execution of Palestinians

‘US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has welcomed Qatar’s reaction to the list of demands put forward by the Gulf States in an ultimatum and called on “each of the countries” involved to sit down at the negotiating table to resolve the issue.

Tillerson said that the “series of requests presented by Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the UAE” at least partly provides “a basis for ongoing dialogue leading to resolution.”

He urged the sides to continue negotiations by saying that it would be a “productive step,” adding that the US believes its allies are “stronger when they are working together.” Tillerson also reiterated that the common goal of the US, the Gulf States and Qatar is “stopping terrorism and countering extremism” and added that “each country involved has something to contribute to that effort.”

Tillerson also urged all sides to “lower” their rhetoric to ease tensions, and said that the US would stay in “close contact” with all parties and support Kuwait in its mediation efforts.’

Read more: ‘Productive step’: US urges Qatar & Gulf States to come to negotiating table

‘A new report from the Washington Post today quoted a series of Obama Administration officials reiterating their official narrative on Russia’s accused hacking of the 2016 election. While most of the article is simply rehashes and calls for sanctions, they also revealed a secret order by President Obama in the course of “retaliation” for the alleged hacking.

This previously secret order involved having US intelligence design and implant a series of cyberweapons into Russia’s infrastructure systems, with officials saying they are meant to be activated remotely to hit the most important networks in Russia and are designed to “cause them pain and discomfort.”

The US has, of course, repeatedly threatened “retaliatory” cyberattacks against Russia, and promised to knock out broad parts of their economy in doing so. These appear to be the first specific plans to have actually infiltrate Russian networks and plant such weapons to do so.’

Read more: US Admits to Implanting Cyberweapons in Critical Russian Infrastructure

‘At least nine civilians, including two women, have been killed and a number of others wounded in Saudi Arabia’s airstrikes on residential buildings in Yemen’s central province of Ma’rib.

According to Yemen’s Arabic-language al-Masirah television network, the aerial aggression occurred on Sunday, when Saudi warplanes bombed homes in Ale-Massad neighborhood in Sirwah district. Earlier in the day, Saudi jets had bombed Sirwah eight more times.

The airstrikes and the killing of Yemeni civilians took place as Yemenis were celebrating Eid al-Fitr, which marks the end of the holy fasting month of Ramadan.

The Saudi warplanes also carried out airstrikes on Yakhtal area of the Red Sea port city of Mukha in the southwestern province of Ta’izz, and al-Masahef and al-Sabhan areas in Baqim district in the northwestern province of Sa’ada. Possible casualties and damage of the strikes were not reported.’

Read more: Saudi airstrikes kill nine civilians in Yemen’s Ma’rib province

‘Six children have been killed while playing with an explosive-laden toy in a village in northwestern Pakistan.

Senior government official Muhammed Sohaib said Sunday that the children were killed after picking up a explosive device that looked like a toy.

“Four of them died on the spot, one on the way to hospital, and one at the hospital,” said, Muhammed Umer, a relative of one of the children injured in the blast. He said the children encountered the device while playing outdoors.

Sohaib said the government would compensate the families of the victims and take care of the children’s medical bills.

The blast comes a day after two children were killed from a mine explosion while playing in the fields in a nearby village. Reports said the children had stepped on a landmine.’

Read more: Blast kills six children in village northwest of Pakistan

‘WHO has expressed gratitude to Saudi Arabia for making a “noble” donation to fight a cholera outbreak in Yemen, even though the kingdom itself is contributing to the spread of the illness in the neighboring country by bombing and blockading it.

Saudi Arabian Defense Minister and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who initiated and is now overseeing his country’s intervention in Yemen, has ordered the King Salman Center for Humanitarian Aid and Relief (KSRelief) to contribute $66.7 million to fight cholera in a country that the Gulf kingdom has been bombing since March of 2015.

Cholera, which causes severe dysentery and vomiting, can develop in areas with poor sanitation. It is contracted by coming into contact with contaminated water sources.

Yemen, which has been torn apart by a civil war, continues to bleed from the Saudi-led bombardment. The conflict, now raging into its third year, has decimated the infrastructure and health facilities of the country, which has been described by the UN as the poorest in the Arab region.’

Read more: Saudi Arabia donates $66.7million to stop cholera crisis in Yemen as it continues to bomb & blockade it

‘The U.S. military and/or the CIA outsourced parts of their ongoing torture campaign in Yemen to the United Arab Emirates, reports AP. Some “interrogations” are done in the presence of U.S. personal and on U.S. ships:

Hundreds of men swept up in the hunt for al-Qaida militants have disappeared into a secret network of prisons in southern Yemen where abuse is routine and torture extreme — including the “grill,” in which the victim is tied to a spit like a roast and spun in a circle of fire, an Associated Press investigation has found.

Senior American defense officials acknowledged Wednesday that U.S. forces have been involved in interrogations of detainees in Yemen but denied any participation in or knowledge of human rights abuses.

At one main detention complex at Riyan airport in the southern city of Mukalla, former inmates described being crammed into shipping containers smeared with feces and blindfolded for weeks on end. They said they were beaten, trussed up on the “grill,” and sexually assaulted. According to a member of the Hadramawt Elite, a Yemeni security force set up by the UAE, American forces were at times only yards away.’

Read more: U.S. Torture, A Saudi Coup And ISIS Crimes – ‘By, With And Through Allies’