No pretext of going through the UN to add the aura of legitimacy to that which was desired all along?
No trying to figure out if a chemical attack will have actually happened or who did the deed?
Nothing like that.
Just a claim of chemicals weapons use and boom- the US/coalition hits?
"John Bolton told his Russian counterpart, Nikolai Patrushev, that the U.S. has information Syrian President Bashar al-Assad may be preparing to use chemical weapons to recapture the northwestern province of Idlib from rebels.Neither the Astana 3 or Syria need to use chemical weapons to 'recapture' anything!
The U.S. is ready to respond forcefully, Bolton said during a five-hour meeting in Geneva on Thursday, according to four people familiar with the discussions.
Russia’s Defense Ministry hit back on Saturday, accusing the U.S. of collaborating with al-Qaeda-linked rebels who are preparing to stage an incident that would serve as a pretext for another round of Western attacks on Assad.
As I've explained on 4 occasions the Astana 3 (Iran, Russia and Turkey) are working towards a relatively orderly transition of Idlib province back to the government in Damascus and the coalition forces would do everything in their power to prevent this from occurring
Refresh your memory with a series of articles that were posted, by yours truly, starting just over two weeks ago:
- August 9: How Russia, Turkey, and Iran are Going to Avoid a Battle for Idlib
- August 10: Turkey and Russia Coordinate for the Move on Idlib- Moving Terrorists Eastward?
- August 15 :Firas Tlass: SAA Will Invade Idleb with Russian and Turkish Help
- Finally August 16: The Sticky Situation of the Idlib Offensive
There's still more to support this idea of countering the Astana trio, as reported yesterday
ERBIL — The US-led Coalition against the Islamic State (IS) has installed advanced radar systems in the Kurdish areas of Hassakah and Kobani in preparation for creating a no-fly zone in northern Syria, a source told BasNews.
The source claimed that the facilities are set up in previously established airbases in southern Kobani as well as in Hassakah’s Romailan.
“Such facilities were needed for the creation of a no-fly zone that would possibly cover the areas from Manbij to Deir Ez-Zzor,” the source pointed out.
He also revealed that the US has recently sent additional shipments of weapons and ammunitions to the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in order to prepare the Kurdish-led fighters for the final stages of the anti-IS campaign in the southern countryside of Hassakah.
The new measures are apparently in line with Washington’s plan to strengthen its military presence in Syria through enabling its allies and restricting rivals like Iran in expanding their influence across Syria.
Another source from the Democratic Union Party (PYD) told BasNews earlier that the US forces will not withdraw from Syrian Kurdistan after defeating the Islamic State as they are also planning to encounter the Iranian influence there and protect their own interests.
Concerning US’s possible no-fly zone in the easter Euphrates, the source said is aimed to protect the region against international and internal threats.
|image from Bas News|
All this talk about the US pulling out of Syria has been hogwash. Unadulterated grade A stinking excrement. And nothing more. Trump was never, I mean never, taking the troops out of Syria. Not without a fight.
Keeping in mind the British are always in Cyprus and ready to go. This fact has been discussed here at the blog previously.
"This sprawling base at the southern tip of the former U.K. protectorate of Cyprus is the heartbeat of Operation Shader, the British contribution to a U.S.-led international campaign against the self-proclaimed caliphate of the Islamic State."
Akrotiri’s proximity to ISIS holdouts enables its pilots to strike “targets of opportunity” when they pop up in the open, he said. Reporters visiting the base were shown a video purportedly showing the vehicle of what Dickens called a “high-value target” — military speak for senior enemy commanders — being bombed during an unescorted drive through seemingly uninhabited land.
“The pace of the campaign is set by the SDF and their capabilities as they move forward,” Dickens said.So if the SDF moves westward, towards Idlib, the British fighters pilots will aid their advance. Think about that possibility?
US/UK/France preparing new Syria strikes on trumped up pretext
According to the Russian Defense Ministry, militants are arriving in Syria's Idlib after being trained by a private British military company called Olive.
The Russian Defense Ministry has accused the United States, the United Kingdom and France of preparing to carry out new strikes against Syria under the pretext of chemical weapons use by Syrian government forces.Interesting the UK is very big on guns for hire
"Western countries' actions in spite of their public statements are aimed at another sharp deterioration of the situation in the Middle East region and the disruption of the peace process on the territory of Syria," ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov noted.
Leading UK private military company Aegis Defence Services (now part of GardaWorld), Control Risks, and Olive Group are also among the top recruiters. Their senior executives and board are dominated by former military officers, says War on Want. The chief executive of Aegis, for example, is former Gen Graham Binns, one-time commander of British troops in Basra.
G4S last year secured a contract of up to £188m to provide security for the Basrah Gas Company and signed a five-year, £100m contract with the British embassy in Afghanistan. Clients of G4S, whose annual turnover in Africa has reached £500m, include Royal Dutch Shell and AngloGold Ashanti, War on Want reports.
Foreign Office spending on contracts with private UK security companies rose from £12.6m in 2003 to £48.9m in 2012, according to official figures.
The use of private armies and “floating armouries” by shipping companies is also growing, according to War on Want. Floating armouries are ships harboured at sea, stacked with high-powered rifles, night-vision goggles.
More than half of the members of the Security Association for the Maritime Industry (SAMI) are British. Protection Vessels International Ltd, a UK company, describes itself as the “global leader in armed maritime security”. It was set up in 2008 by senior former military figures “with the express purpose of applying military standards of security”, with a team “drawn from the highest echelons of UK Royal Marines, UK government intelligence and commerce”, War on Want notes.Privateers have never gone away... Privateers are pirates sanctioned by the state- In the same way as irregular fighters/terrorists are sanctioned by the state while offering up plausible deniability to the state on whose behalf they work. Same/same.
Senior US diplomat Visited Unlawfully Annexed Territory in Syria
SHADADI: A senior US diplomat visited Kurdish-held territory in Syria on Saturday as the minority negotiates with Damascus over the future of its semi-autonomous region.
Daily Mail - William Roebuck
Ambassador William Roebuck was in the town of Shadidi in the northwestern province of Hasakeh after visiting the towns of Kobane and Minbej in recent days.
Roebucks bio, briefly- from 2014
His first assignment was as a consular officer in Kingston, Jamaica, until 1994. In 1995, Roebuck had his first posting to the Middle East, as a political officer in the consulate in Jerusalem. He returned to Washington in 1997 to become a staff assistant to the assistant secretary of state for Near Eastern affairs. The following year, he began to study Arabic at the Foreign Service institutes in Washington and Tunis, Tunisia.
Roebuck began an eventful tour as political officer at the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv in 2000. He worked on political issues in the Gaza Strip.
Roebuck was named political section chief at the U.S. Embassy in Damascus, Syria, in 2004 and for the last year of his tour was acting deputy chief of mission. He was brought home in 2007 as deputy office director in the Office of Arabian Peninsula Affairs. He served a tour in Baghdad from July 2009 until August 2010 as deputy political counselor at the embassy there. His main emphasis was providing support for national elections in March 2010 He returned to Washington in September 2010 as director of the Office of Maghreb Affairs, a post he held until December 2012.
Roebuck was sent to Libya in January 2013 in the wake of the attacks on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi to serve as chargé d’affaires at the embassy in Tripoli, staying there for six months.
After that, he came home to be deputy assistant secretary of state for Egypt and Maghreb Affairs. In February 2014, he and other Americans walked out of a Tunisian celebration of the country’s new constitution after Iranian parliamentary speaker Ali Larijani criticized the United States for “supporting dictatorships” during the Arab Spring uprisings.
He is expected to continue to Deir Ezzor, an eastern province where the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), a US-backed coalition of Kurdish and Arab fighters, is fighting the Daesh group in the militants’ last redoubt.
“We are prepared to stay here, as the president (Donald Trump) has made clear, to ensure the enduring defeat of Daesh,” Roebuck said.
“We remain focused on ensuring the withdrawal of Iranian forces and their proxies as well.”
Russia Black Sea Fleet Ships Move Into the Area
Moscow, SANA – The Russian Black Sea Fleet announced that the frigates Admiral Grigorovich and Admiral Essen are joining the Russian ships stationed opposite the Syrian coast in the Mediterranean.
A representative of the fleet told RT on Saturday that the two frigates are passing through the Bosporus and Dardanelles straits, and they should rendezvous with the Russian ships in the Mediterranean later today and begin carrying out their assigned tasks upon joining the other ships.
The two frigates had recently concluded training missions including takeoff and landing of Kamov Ka-27 military helicopters and drills for searching and tracking submarines.