Browsing: War and Terror

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‘The US has deployed troops to Syria’s northeast border with Turkey in an attempt to prevent an escalation of fighting between the Turkish forces and Kurdish militia units that followed Turkish airstrikes hitting two Kurdish-held areas in Syria and Iraq.

“Coalition forces are conducting joint patrols along the northeastern Syria-Turkey border to assess reports from both the [Kurdish] SDF and Turkey regarding skirmishes and cross-border fires between their respective security forces,” an official from the Combined Joint Task Force – Operation Inherent Resolve (CJTF-OIR) Public Affairs Office told RT via email, confirming the deployment.’

Read more: US troops deployed at Syrian border to prevent clashes between Turkish & Kurdish forces 

Missiles

‘The US kicked off joint naval exercises with South Korea as the US aircraft carrier group led by the USS Carl Vinson entered the Sea of Japan through the Tsusima Strait. The war games got underway on the heels of North Korea’s unsuccessful missile launch.

“South Korea and US strike forces began a drill in the East Sea from 6pm (09:00 GMT) today against the backdrop of the current security situation,” South Korean Navy officials announced, referring to the Sea of Japan, as cited by Yonhap news agency.

Apart from the USS Carl Vinson, the group also includes the USS Lake Champlain, a guided-missile cruiser, as well as two destroyers, the USS Michael Murphy and the USS Wayne E. Meyer.

The drill, which is expected to last through next week, will focus on monitoring, tracing, and intercepting any intercontinental ballistic missiles that could be potentially launched by North Korea, Yonhap reports.’

Read more: Joint US-South Korea naval drills start in Sea of Japan amid tensions around Korean peninsula

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‘The United States has approved a proposal to sell Israel more weapons, including naval guns and technical support worth an estimated $440 million.

The Defense Security Cooperation Agency said in a statement on Friday that the State Department agreed to allow the possible sale of 13 76mm naval guns to Tel Aviv.

The Pentagon agency said it had notified the Congress about the State Department’s decision

“The United States is committed to the security of Israel, and it is vital to US national interests to assist Israel to develop and maintain a strong and ready self-defense capability,” said the agency.’

Read more: US approves another hundreds-million-dollar arms sale to Israel

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‘The United States security umbrella for Saudi Arabia amounts to defense of terrorism by Washington, suggests a former US diplomat in the Middle Eastern country.

Michael Springmann made the comments in an interview with Press TV this week, while commenting on President Donald Trump’s recent criticism of the long time US ally.

In an interview with Reuters on Wednesday, the new president asserted his campaign stance that Washington is “losing a tremendous amount of money in defending” the monarchy.

“There is absolutely no need for a security umbrella for Saudi Arabia unless you consider the countries that Saudi Arabia and Saudi Arabia-financed terrorists have destroyed,” said Springmann, referencing the kingdom’s victims, including Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, “and now Yemen.”

The two countries’ claims that “Iran is trying to destabilize the region” is “a straight Israeli propaganda line,” he added.’

Read more: US defense of Saudi Arabia is defense of terrorism: Former US diplomat

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‘Labour has signalled it is looking at new measures to ensure British-built weapons and military technology are not bought by repressive regimes around the world.

It comes as the party plans its general election manifesto and following uproar at the Government’s backing for billions of pounds worth of arms sales to Saudi Arabia.

Jeremy Corbyn’s push for a more ethical exports policy comes just days after Sir Michael Fallon, the Defence Secretary, praised a UK firm that sold missiles to Colonel Gaddafi as a “role model” for post-Brexit trade.’

Read more: Labour will block the sale of weapons to repressive regimes if it wins the election

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‘U.S. officials this week requested the geographic coordinates of aid groups working in Somalia, according to a document obtained by The Intercept — a move that could indicate an escalation of military action against the Shabab. The notice to NGOs comes a month after President Trump declared portions of the country an “area of active hostilities,” giving the military wider scope to launch strikes that could potentially kill more civilians.

“Due to the need for increased operational security in Somalia, and based on best practices in other complex emergencies, humanitarian and development organizations may want to provide information about their fixed locations in Somalia for deconfliction,” states the letter, written by USAID’s Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance and intended for “all international and local humanitarian and development organizations with operations in Somalia.” Aid groups have an extensive presence in Somalia, where the government declared a state of disaster in February due to crippling drought and food shortages.’

Read more: US signals possible airstrikes in Somalia by asking aid groups for their locations

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‘The United States has been waging a drone war across Africa and the Middle East for more than a decade. Sonia Kennebeck’s new PBS documentary “National Bird,” executive produced by Errol Morris and Wim Wenders, tells the haunting stories of three American whistleblowers attempting to return to normal life after a stint in the highly controversial program.

Daniel, a political activist and former NSA signals intelligence analyst, is being investigated for espionage.

“He could be indicted any day, or years from now, for espionage, because the government suspects that he is a source of information about the drone program that the government doesn’t want out there,” Daniel’s attorney, Jesselyn Radack, explains in the film.’

Read more: ‘I Don’t Know How Many People I’ve Killed’: Whistleblowers Speak Out on America’s Gruesome Drone Wars

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‘Yemeni forces have killed as many as nine Saudi-backed militants, hitting them in two separate counterstrikes throughout the impoverished nation.

Yemen’s Army and its allies have been hitting back against Saudi Arabia which has been pounding its impoverished neighbor for more than two years now.

On Saturday, the Army and their allies killed five Saudi mercenaries in Midi District of the northwestern Hajjah Province, Yemen’s al-Masirah television network said.

A day earlier, the Army and Houthi fighters had downed a spy drone belonging to the mercenaries in the same region.

Also on Saturday, Yemeni snipers took out four Saudi-backed militants in Sirwah District of the west-central Ma’rib Province.’

Read more: Yemeni forces kill nine Saudi mercernaries; US drone kills four

Missiles

‘North Korea test-fired a ballistic missile in the early hours of Saturday morning, reports in South Korea said, amid rising military tensions with the US.

The missile, launched from a region north of the capital, Pyongyang, appeared to have blown up a few seconds into flight, South Korea’s Yonhap news agency said.

US officials said the missile did not leave North Korean territory and was probably a medium-range missile known as a KN-17.

It was the second failed test of a ballistic missile this month and came amid a flurry of rhetoric from North Korea warning of “imminent” war against the US.’

Read more: North Korea ‘tests ballistic missile’ amid reports Pyongyang stating war ‘imminent’

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‘Russia has urged Washington and Seoul to reconsider their decision to station THAAD anti-missile system on the Korean Peninsula, warning that it will serve a “destabilizing factor” that could tip the existing military balance in the tense region.

Speaking in front of the UN Security Council just hours before North Korea reportedly conducted its second failed ballistic missile test this month, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov noted that placing THAAD anti-missiles on North Korean borders will serve as “additional destabilizing factor in the region.”

Gatilov said that the deployment of Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) was made “in line with the vicious logic of creating a global missile shield.” But the missile defense system deployment, he warned, is also undermining security and deterrent powers of adjacent states, such as China, thus threatening “the existing military balance in the region.”’

Read more: ‘Destabilizing factor’: Russia urges US and South Korea to reconsider THAAD anti-missiles deployment

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