Tag Archives: Regime Change

The Syrian War Is Over – It Never Should Have Started, by Ted Snider

There was never any good reason to get involved in Syria, just a few bad ones. From Ted Snider at antiwar.com:

At the close of 2018, President Donald Trump announced that American troops were being withdrawn from Syria. By the open of 2019, National Security Advisor John Bolton and Senator Lindsey Graham were saying that there would be no withdrawal before a full defeat of the Islamic State and other objectives were achieved.

As usual, the tune being played by the White House is more cacophony than symphony, and no one knows when the troops will be withdrawn from Syria. The notes played have included everything from immediately, to a month, to several months to not until were done.

Whenever it is to be done, the withdrawal of U.S. troops has brought near unanimous criticism from the mainstream media. The alternative media has had several very good articles on the appropriateness of the withdrawal since all of America’s objectives in Syria have been realized to the extent they can be realized. Trump, himself said this when he said, via Twitter, “We have defeated ISIS in Syria, my only reason for being there. . . . ”

But, it is not true that the defeat of the Islamic State was the only reason for American troops being in Syria. The reasons have ranged and changed from regime change, the Islamic State and chemical weapons to Iran. And most of the alternative media articles have missed the more important point that, if America’s objectives have been realized, it is only because they were never problems in the first place. If the obstacles to peace are gone, it is only because they were never there. If the troops can be withdrawn from Syria, it is only because they never should have been there.

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Why the U.S. Military is Woefully Unprepared for a Major Conventional Conflict, by Brian Kalman, Daniel Deiss, and Edwin Watson

This is a long but worthwhile article that’s essentially the last word on military boondoggles. It makes the important point that foreign policy should be geared to what the nation can afford on military spending. From Brian Kalman, Daniel Deiss,  and Edwin Watson at southfront.org:

Introduction

In the Department of Defense authored summary of the National Defense Strategy of the United States for 2018, Secretary James Mattis quite succinctly sets out the challenges and goals of the U.S. military in the immediate future. Importantly, he acknowledges that the U.S. had become far too focused on counter-insurgency over the past two decades, but he seems to miss the causation of this mission in the first place. U.S. foreign policy, and its reliance on military intervention to solve all perceived problems, regime change and imperialist adventurism, resulted in the need to occupy nations, or destroy them. This leads to the growth of insurgencies, and the strengthening of long simmering religious radicalism and anti-western sentiment in the Middle East and Central Asia. The U.S. military willfully threw itself headlong into a self-fulfilling prophecy.

The United States engaged in unnecessary wars, and when these wars were easily won on the immediate battlefield, the unplanned for occupations lead to guerilla insurgencies that were not so easy for a conventional military to confront. The U.S. Army was not prepared for guerilla warfare in urban areas, nor for the brutal and immoral tactics that their new enemies were willing to engage in. They obviously had not reflected upon the Soviet experience in Afghanistan, nor the nature of their new enemies. As casualties mounted due to roadside IEDs, snipers, and suicide bombers hidden amongst civilians, the U.S. military and the defense industry were forced to find ways to protect soldiers and make vehicle less vulnerable to these types of attacks. This resulted in vehicles of every description being armored and new IED resistant vehicles being designed and fielded in large numbers. This in turn, equated to a vast amount of time, effort and money. It also focused both the U.S. military services and the defense industry away from fighting conventional wars against peer adversaries.

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Inside America’s Meddling Machine: Max Blumenthal Exposes The Regime Change Promoting ‘NED’, by Tyler Durden

Meet the government-funded agency that does the exact same thing we excoriate the Russians for doing: meddling in other countries’ elections. From Tyler Durden at zerohedge.com:

National Endowment for Democracy (NED).

The film’s producer, journalist Max Blumenthanl, goes inside one of the NED’s recent events in Washington to expose the history and leadership behind what’s described as “a taxpayer funded organization that has interfered in elections, mobilized coups, and orchestrated public relations campaigns against nations that resist Washington’s agenda.”

Blumenthal covers a recent NED event highlighting Korean activists working to bring down the communist government of North Korea, and launches into the shady history of the group’s semi-secretive operations.

And Blumenthal continues, speaking of the history of the NED which has often worked hand in hand with US intelligence agencies to topple foreign governments: “Founded in 1983 by then president Ronald Reagan, the National Endowment for Democracy became an international vehicle for the neoconservative agenda.”

“Its founding cadre were Cold War ideologues who were, like so many early neoconservative operatives, former Trotskyists who once belonged to the Social Democrats USA party,” narrates Blumenthal.

Watch Max Blumenthal’s bombshell documentary, Inside America’s Meddling Machine:

Blumenthal’s analysis and questions he poses to NED officials and attendees at the event demonstrate how the group openly seeks to “weaponized civil society and media” against governments standing in Washington’s way, or even on behalf of major US corporations seeking the muscle their way into emerging foreign markets.

Lately, the organization has been leading efforts to destabilize both North Korea and China, and his interviews at the NED’s latest civil society “activist” event details with surprising clarity some of the ongoing projects the NED is sponsoring.

In one particularly notable segment of the documentary, Blumenthal corners Democratic House minority leader Nancy Pelosi, among the NED’s most visible supporters, and asks her about the hypocrisy of the NED’s ongoing meddling in foreign politics at the very moment that US leaders and the national media are engaged in hysterics over alleged Russian meddling in US elections.

To continue reading: Inside America’s Meddling Machine: Max Blumenthal Exposes The Regime Change Promoting ‘NED’

‘Tweet of Mass Destruction’ ratchets up tension on Iran, by Pepe Escobar

President Trump has underestimated the difficulty of either getting the present Iranian government to renegotiate the Nuclear Agreement or replacing that government with one more congenial towards the US. From Pepe Escobar at atimes.com:

Iranians burn an image of US President Donald Trump during an anti-US demonstration outside the former US embassy headquarters in the capital Tehran on May 9, 2018. Photo: AFP/Atta Kenare

Iranians burn an image of US President Donald Trump during an anti-US demonstration outside the former US embassy headquarters in the capital Tehran on May 9, 2018. Photo: AFP/Atta Kenare

State Dept Insider: “Eerily Familiar Drumbeat Of War Intensifying” Ahead Of Pompeo’s Iran Speech, by Reza Marashi

Many Iranians don’t like their government, but they like the idea of the US “changing” their government even less. From Razi Marashi at zerohedge.com:

Reza Marashi served in the Office of Iranian Affairs at the U.S. State Department and is currently research director at the National Iranian American Council. He is frequently consulted by Western governments on Iran-related matters. He took to Twitter on Friday to sound the alarm ahead of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s upcoming address called “Supporting Iranian Voices,” set to be held Sunday at the Reagan Library, warning as a former longtime State Department insider that this is not about “rights” or “democracy promotion” but that the wheels of the Washington regime change machine are turning.

And now I shall go on one of my famous rants. This time about Mike Pompeo’s upcoming speech on “Supporting Iranian Voices.” This is going to be long. Find your favorite comfy chair. Put on some cozy attire – sweatpants, perhaps. Pop some popcorn. Pour yourself an adult beverage.

To date, out of respect for my friends still fighting the good fight at the State Department, I have kept silent about this heavy, wet, overflowing diaper of everything that should not be. But I keep getting asked about it, so I will oblige once and then let the clown show carry on.

An eerily familiar drumbeat of war is intensifying across DC, as the continues its wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, and Yemen. The ghosts of America’s neoconservative past are dusting off their Iraq playbook to make the case for war with Iran.

Their formula is simple but effective: Portray the Iranian government as an existential threat, insist that a chain of catastrophic events will result from inaction, and minimize costs and risks of the war that is necessary to facilitate their regime change efforts.

If one looks back, however, neocons weren’t alone in their push for war with Iraq. A crucial aspect of selling the war to the U.S. public was a modicum of support within the Iraqi-American community.

Iraqi exiles living abroad, such as Ahmed Chalabi and Kanan Makiya, as well as supposed whistle-blowers turned known fabricators like the infamous “Curveball,” led a contingent of vocal Iraqis who pushed for steadily more aggressive actions to topple Saddam Hussein’s regime.

Their promise that the invasion would be a cakewalk and that U.S. soldiers would be greeted with flowers and candy didn’t quite pan out. Now, the fruits of their labor are clear for all to see — a broken country, devastated by war, with no discernible end in sight.

To continue reading: State Dept Insider: “Eerily Familiar Drumbeat Of War Intensifying” Ahead Of Pompeo’s Iran Speech

A Brief History Of US Covert Action In Syria – Part 1, by William Van Wagenen

Chapter and verse on how the US aided and abetted al Qaeda and its affiliates pursuing regime change against Bashar al Assad in Syria. From William Van Wagenen at The Libertarian Institute via zerohedge.com:

Part I: The Myth of US ‘Inaction’ in Syria, by William Van Wagenen via The Libertarian Institute

When the Russian military intervened in the Syrian war in October 2015, many in the Western press complained bitterly, demanding that US planners intervene directly in Syria on behalf of the anti-government rebels in response. Reuters alleged that “The Middle East is angry and bewildered by US inaction in Syria,” arguing that “The question on everyone’s mind is: will the United States and its European and regional Sunni allies intervene to stop President Vladimir Putin from reversing the gains made by mainstream Syrian rebels after more than four years of war? Few are holding their breath.”

The Washington Post similarly argued that Russian president Vladimir Putin was “exploiting America’s inaction,” while the Guardian lamented the “western inability to care enough about the plight of Syrians.” As Russian and Syrian forces battled rebels one year later in Aleppo, more dramatic accusations of US inaction emerged, with Foreign Policy describing US policy in Syria under Obama as “inaction in the face of genocide.”

The idea that the United States has not intervened in Syria and is guilty of “inaction,” is a myth however. The United States and its Western and Gulf Allies have intervened in the Syrian conflict from early on. US planners have been fighting what the New York Times described as a “$1 Billion Secret C.I.A. War in Syria” while providing weapons to rebels through a program considered “one of the costliest covert action programs in the history of the C.I.A.” Starting in the fall of 2012, the US and its Gulf partners, under the direction of then CIA director David Petraeus, were openly sending “a cataract of weaponry” into Syria. It is likely that such shipments began much earlier without public acknowledgment, via the “rat line” from Libya, as reported by journalist Seymour Hersh.

US Special Envoy to Syria Michael Ratner, in a meeting with members of the Syrian opposition, explained that “The armed groups in Syria get a lot of support, not just from the United States but from other partners,” while Secretary of State John Kerry added in the same meeting, “I think we’ve been putting an extraordinary amount of arms in,” and “Qatar, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, a huge amount of weapons [are] coming in. A huge amount of money.”

To continue reading: A Brief History Of US Covert Action In Syria – Part 1

 

A Neoconservative Plan for Punishing Iran, by Philip Giraldi

Iran has been in the US warmongers’ crosshairs since 1979, when the Iranian people revolted against US puppet the Shah. From Philip Giraldi at unz.com:

President Donald Trump makes a point of insisting that he has nothing against the Iranian people and is only interested in opposing what he regards as the dangerous activities of their government, but his own record in office belies that claim. It is clear that what he is trying to do is put pressure on the people of Iran to rise up and force a change in government, a process otherwise referred to as regime change. Indeed, if one is to believe Trump confidant Rudy Giuliani, the White House is now committed to “bring down the Iranian regime.” He added that “The collapse of the Islamic Republic of Iran is around the corner.”

Giuliani was addressing a Paris meeting of the National Council of Resistance of Iran at the end of June, the political front group for the terrorist Mujahideen-e-Khalq, for which he has been a frequent paid speaker. This dream of an abrupt transition in government is a fantasy project that is widely held within neoconservative and pro-Israel circles in Washington, to include Giuliani, and it very often is invoked as part of what is sometimes referred to as the “Obama betrayal,” which posits that if President Barack Obama had actively supported so-called “green” reformers in the Iranian election of 2013, they might have actually won. That supposition greatly inflates the actual support for the reformers at that time and also currently, confusing a largely civil rights movement with a unified political party.

Obama then went on to sign the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear agreement with Iran, which has been a target of joint Israeli and neocon wrath ever since. Trump, of course, has risen to the bait and has withdrawn the United States from the deal, also reintroducing both general and targeted sanctions as well as seeking to ban the sale of Iranian oil worldwide.

Unfortunately, as is so often the case, Trump and his advisers, certainly to include National Security Adviser John Bolton, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley and Senior Adviser for Policy Stephen Miller, are engaging in the wrong tactics to bring about any what might reasonably be regarded positive changes to moderate the grip of Iran’s Supreme Religious Council and are instead hardening domestic popular support for the government through the threats and sanctions which ultimately accomplish little more than punishing the Iranian people.

To continue reading: A Neoconservative Plan for Punishing Iran