Moscow Has Upped the Ante in Syria

As Syrian forces backed by Russia launch the final showdown in Syria against jihadist extremists in Idlib province, the potential for a U.S.-Russia confrontation has never been greater, as VIPS warns in this memo to the president. September 9, 2018


FROM: Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity

SUBJECT: Moscow Has Upped the Ante in Syria

Mr. President:

We are concerned that you may not have been adequately briefed on the upsurge of hostilities in northwestern Syria, where Syrian armed forces with Russian support have launched a full-out campaign to take back the al-Nusra/al-Qaeda/ISIS-infested province of Idlib.  The Syrians will almost certainly succeed, as they did in late 2016 in Aleppo.  As in Aleppo, it will mean unspeakable carnage, unless someone finally tells the insurgents theirs is a lost cause.

That someone is you. The Israelis, Saudis, and others who want unrest to endure are egging on the insurgents, assuring them that you, Mr. President, will use U.S. forces to protect the insurgents in Idlib, and perhaps also rain hell down on Damascus.  We believe that your senior advisers are encouraging the insurgents to think in those terms, and that your most senior aides are taking credit for your recent policy shift from troop withdrawal from Syria to indefinite war.

Big Difference This Time 

Russian missile-armed naval and air units are now deployed in unprecedented numbers to engage those tempted to interfere with Syrian and Russian forces trying to clean out the terrorists from Idlib. We assume you have been briefed on that — at least to some extent. More important, we know that your advisers tend to be dangerously dismissive of Russian capabilities and intentions.

We do not want you to be surprised when the Russians start firing their missiles.  The prospect of direct Russian-U.S. hostilities in Syria is at an all-time high.  We are not sure you realize that.

The situation is even more volatile because Kremlin leaders are not sure who is calling the shots in Washington.  This is not the first time that President Putin has encountered such uncertainty (see brief Appendix below).  This is, however, the first time that Russian forces have deployed in such numbers into the area, ready to do battle.  The stakes are very high.

We hope that John Bolton has given you an accurate description of his acerbic talks with his Russian counterpart in Geneva a few weeks ago. In our view, it is a safe bet that the Kremlin is uncertain whether Bolton faithfully speaks in your stead, or speaks INSTEAD of you.

The best way to assure Mr. Putin that you are in control of U.S. policy toward Syria would be for you to seek an early opportunity to speak out publicly, spelling out your intentions.  If you wish wider war, Bolton has put you on the right path. 

If you wish to cool things down, you may wish to consider what might be called a pre-emptive ceasefire. By that we mean a public commitment by the presidents of the U.S. and Russia to strengthen procedures to preclude an open clash between U.S. and Russian armed forces.  We believe that, in present circumstances, this kind of extraordinary step is now required to head off wider war.

For the VIPS Steering Group, signed: 

William Binney, former Technical Director, World Geopolitical & Military Analysis, NSA; co-founder, SIGINT Automation Research Center (ret.)

Richard H. Black, Senator of Virginia, 13th District; Colonel, US Army (ret.); former Chief, Criminal Law Division, Office of the Judge Advocate General, the Pentagon (Associate VIPS)

Marshall Carter-Tripp, Foreign Service Officer (ret.) and Division Director, State Department Bureau of Intelligence and Research

Bogdan Dzakovic, former Team Leader of Federal Air Marshals and Red Team, FAA Security (ret.) (Associage VIPS)

Philip Giraldi, CIA Operations Officer (retired)

Mike Gravel, former Adjutant, top secret control officer, Communications Intelligence Service; special agent of the Counter Intelligence Corps and former United States Senator (Alaska)

James George Jatras, former U.S. diplomat and former foreign policy adviser to Senate Republican leadership (Associate VIPS)

Michael S. Kearns, Captain, U.S. Air Force, Intelligence Officer, and former Master SERE Instructor (retired)

John Kiriakou, Former CIA Counterterrorism Officer and Former Senior Investigator, Senate Foreign Relations Committee

Karen Kwiatkowski, Lt. Col., USAF (ret.)

Matthew Hoh, former Capt., USMC Iraq; Foreign Service Officer, Afghanistan (associate VIPS)

Edward Loomis, NSA Cryptologic Computer Scientist (ret.)

Linda Lewis, WMD preparedness policy analyst, USDA (ret) (Associate VIPS)

David MacMichael, Senior Estimates Officer, National Intelligence Council (ret.)

Ray McGovern, Army/Infantry Intelligence Officer and CIA Presidential Briefer (retired)

Elizabeth Murray, Deputy National Intelligence Officer for the Near East, National Intelligence Council (retired)

Todd E. Pierce, MAJ, US Army Judge Advocate (ret.)

Scott Ritter, former MAJ, USMC, former UN Weapons Inspector, Iraq

Coleen Rowley, FBI Special Agent and former Minneapolis Division Legal Counsel (ret.)

Lawrence Wilkerson, Col. US Army (ret.); former Chief of Staff for Secretary of State; Distinguished Visiting Professor, College of William and Mary (Associate VIPS)

Sarah G. Wilton, CDR, USNR (ret.); Defense Intelligence Agency (ret.)

Robert Wing, former Foreign Service Officer (Associate VIPS)

Ann Wright, retired U.S. Army reserve colonel and former U.S. diplomat who resigned in 2003 in opposition to the Iraq War


Sept 12, 2016:  The limited ceasefire goes into effect; provisions include separating the “moderate” rebels from the others. Secretary John Kerry had earlier claimed that he had “refined” ways to accomplish the separation, but it did not happen; provisions also included safe access for relief for Aleppo.

Sept 17, 2016: U.S. Air Force bombs fixed Syrian Army positions killing between 64 and 84 Syrian army troops; about 100 others wounded — evidence enough to convince the Russians that the Pentagon was intent on scuttling meaningful cooperation with Russia.

Sept 26, 2016:  We can assume that what Lavrov has told his boss in private is close to his uncharacteristically blunt words on Russian NTV on Sept. 26. (In public remarks bordering on the insubordinate, senior Pentagon officials a few days earlier had showed unusually open skepticism regarding key aspects of the Kerry-Lavrov agreement – like sharing intelligence with the Russians (a key provision of the deal approved by both Obama and Putin).   Here’s what Lavrov said on Sept 26:

“My good friend John Kerry … is under fierce criticism from the US military machine. Despite the fact that, as always, [they] made assurances that the US Commander in Chief, President Barack Obama, supported him in his contacts with Russia (he confirmed that during his meeting with President Vladimir Putin), apparently the military does not really listen to the Commander in Chief.”

Lavrov went beyond mere rhetoric. He also specifically criticized JCS Chairman Joseph Dunford for telling Congress that he opposed sharing intelligence with Russia, “after the agreements concluded on direct orders of Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Barack Obama stipulated that they would share intelligence. … It is difficult to work with such partners. …”

Oct 27, 2016:  Putin speaks at the Valdai International Discussion Club
At Valdai Russian President Putin spoke of the “feverish” state of international relations and lamented: “My personal agreements with the President of the United States have not produced results.” He complained about “people in Washington ready to do everything possible to prevent these agreements from being implemented in practice” and, referring to Syria, decried the lack of a “common front against terrorism after such lengthy negotiations, enormous effort, and difficult compromises.”

Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) is made up of former intelligence officers, diplomats, military officers and congressional staffers. The organization, founded in 2002, was among the first critics of Washington’s justifications for launching a war against Iraq. VIPS advocates a US foreign and national security policy based on genuine national interests rather than contrived threats promoted for largely political reasons. An archive of VIPS memoranda is available at

167 comments for “Moscow Has Upped the Ante in Syria

  1. Andy Berman
    September 20, 2018 at 12:06

    Note to VIPS:

    Tell these thousands of peaceful demonstrators in Idlib that “their cause is lost”.

    And while you are at it,tell the Palestinians that their cause is lost.

    Shame on VIPS for promoting the lies of the brutal dictator Assad and defending the massive war
    crimes of Russia and Assad against the Syrian people!

    • Rick Lujan
      September 20, 2018 at 19:06

      Which brutal dictator or leader ….. are you talking about sir! ….I have a tremendous respect for your opinions and for anyone else whom disagrees with myself or anyone else… etc… We in the United States of America have tragically avoided any and all credibility of a sovereign country that is supposedly the global leader in all things ! …. A couple of decades….. our experiences in Afghanistan {which is the ONLY Legitimate military campaign} …. what’s even more interesting is that the same “ Useful Idiots “ who for the same two decades have been hysterical in a crescendo…. a tsunami … then the Obama- Clinton Administration….. provides the world un-reconcilable factual evidence with the debacle of which we sir have not seen or experienced the debacle that is the subject of LIBYA & Syria…. Mommar Qaddafi was no enemy sir … he actually was giving the aforementioned U.S. government a library of undisclosed information and real spot on Intelligence in ways… You or myself sir do not have a clue about !!

    • robin
      September 21, 2018 at 11:14

      What makes President of Syria “a brutal dictator ” and where did you take this ” massive war
      crimes against the Syrian people ” ?
      Any source ? BBC ? CNN ? …. ?
      While there read ,watch and learn who is brutal . —


    • Hank
      September 23, 2018 at 10:38

      You can’t fool people on here Andy- the “lies” have always come from the aggressors of war, in this case, the USA, Israel and Saudi Arabia. Quit wasting your time and ours with these false notions!

  2. Cornelia Praetorius
    September 18, 2018 at 05:52

    Again I am very impressed by the presence of mind of the Veterans and their shown reliability and feeling of responsibility in giving support to a president whose reasonable attempts to de-escalate the tensions between USA and Russia are constantly counteracted by his so-called advisors – actually his (and the people’s) most dangerous enemies who seem to yearn for a nuclear war between the two super-powers. If only the US-citizens would understand that their obligation now is to stand – in this matter – by their president it would help greatly.

  3. Imad Aliroud
    September 16, 2018 at 22:37

    And you think this thing will even read your call !!??

  4. Socraticgadfly
    September 13, 2018 at 14:24

    “All-out war” is not likely, per Robert Fisk. Rather, an “anaconda squeeze,” mixed with Russian talks with Turkey and other elements, is a more likely outcome.

  5. September 12, 2018 at 15:17

    Fossil fuels. Who’ll deny it’s what the fighting’s all about?This article has a mapwhich shows us what we need to know.

  6. September 12, 2018 at 05:43

    thanks for that letter, I would love to have signed it — I also worked in INR in one of my early State postings, and have been writing on US foreign policy for my essay blog for some few years now. I have been watching Syria for all that time and am astounded that in the end, we could not give up our regime change addiction. Nothing but pain, apparently, will convince us.

    • September 15, 2018 at 23:17

      Norma, please get in touch. By clicking on the “CONTACT” widget atop, you can find an email address. Best, ray

  7. September 11, 2018 at 19:53

    is the false flag coming?
    Filming of staged chemical attack in Syrian Idlib begins – Russian MoD
    Published time: 11 Sep, 2018 11:25Edited time: 11 Sep, 2018 17:34

  8. Abr
    September 11, 2018 at 19:25

    Who are the people who still believe the western media and establishment propaganda about Syria (and about anything else really)?

    Anyobody with two neurons knows that the political puppets in the west are at the service of corporations, lobbies and military indutrial complexes when they’re not directly serving their worst foreign ennemies.

    Who believes one second in the staged “chemica’ BS, the “Russia collusion in elections”, the “revolutions” in ukraine, Libya and elsewhere?

    Maybe a nuclear war would be better for the survival of this planet than the endless multiplication of the parasitic pest that dares to call itself “homo sapiens”.

    Personally, I wish the Russians to win, they ate least, play for their country.

    • DC_rez
      September 12, 2018 at 13:18

      Unfortunately many Amerikans still believe this narrative. I know democrats who rant on about the genocide in Syria. They believe the scum Bill Browder is a good guy, they blame Russia for everything except the fake gas attacks. They believe Assad is responsible for those. There are many otherwise intelligent persons in the US who have accepted every bit of the propaganda.

    • cornelia praetorius
      September 18, 2018 at 06:01

      – I love your comment and feel very much the same. The Russians however are rightfully patriotic – not nationalist – and learnt their lessons even though Putin and Lawrow are still ready for any peaceful negotiation to stop all this madness and get down to doing something useful for this crazy world. I am also glad that the Veterans bring to notice that the Russian military capacity is way ahead of what the arrogant West believes – and they cooperate with China.

  9. nsc
    September 11, 2018 at 14:54

    Why are you posting here? He’s on Twitter!

  10. September 11, 2018 at 08:37

    Crisis also in Iraq in Basra and now Kirkuk with pro-American president Abadi looking to lose reelection, and Al-Sadr who seems to have gone pro-Saudi ramping up factions looks to be complicating factor for US.

  11. David Smith
    September 11, 2018 at 01:21

    Everybody relax, there will no war between Russia and The United States over Syria. Most of the noise made by the US is to show the Kurds we are still with them, otherwise they would cleave to Damascus immediately. In the long term, neither Syria nor Turkey will tolerate a Kurdish entity in NW Syria. The headchoppers in Idleb are right where all parties to the conflict(except the headchoppers themselves) want them: in a cauldron with no escape and the SAA will reduce them. For the United States the headchoppers failed despite lavish support, the US will be happy to see them destroyed. Turkey wants the million plus Syrian refugees it hosts to return to Syria as soon as possible, they are very unpopular in Turkey, associated with criminal activity and driving down wages for the average Turk. This will only happen with a return of Syrian sovereignty. The United States can only remain in NW Syria as long as Damascus is occupied with other things like Idleb. When Damascus turns its attention to the NW it can easily brew an irregular insurgency against American forces. The US presence is dependent on a supply line through Iraq and Iraq supports Syrian sovereignty. Once Syria has turned its attention to the NW, Iraq could tell the US it has six months to wrap things up, then the supply line gets shut down and there’s nothing the US could do except go to war with Iraq and that won’t happen. There’s still about a year to go with this thing, but Syria has won.

    • David Smith
      September 11, 2018 at 02:17

      NW Syria should read NE Syria, my apologies.

    • Deniz
      September 11, 2018 at 11:47

      I hope you are right. I understand that the studios are just finishing up the chlorine gas attack videos today, so we should know soon.

      • David Smith
        September 11, 2018 at 13:45

        False Flag Productions biggest hit, Ghouta 2013, was a flop and its been downhill ever since. The latest release, Idlib Klorine Kaper, will be going straight to cable.

        • Leanne A Barley
          September 11, 2018 at 22:50

          I sincerely hope so. Many of my fellow U.S. citizens are proving to be shockingly gullible.

    • September 12, 2018 at 05:47

      Hope you are right, but I am terribly worried. Behind Trump you have, incredibly and once again, the voice of Victoria Nuland who has somehow managed to get in on that regime change game after having fixed Ukraine’s wagon good. And Bolton, who has declared that Syria won’t be allowed to retake Idlib! And then Trump, who is being absolutely gaslighted in the US, and war always makes you feel so good.

  12. September 10, 2018 at 21:55

    Interesting article at link below.

    Jihadi, Inc. Cornered Like Rats in Idlib. What to do With Them?
    Finian Cunningham
    Sun, 09 Sep 2018 15:44 UTC

  13. September 10, 2018 at 20:44

    I love this memorandam being given to the President. As I feel the President does not know exactly what is happening on the ground in Syria. The Russians are fighting the terrorists but the US encorages and training the same terror outfits. The Russians feel that they cannot tolerate this kind of rogue behaviour by the US. And they want to make sure that terrorism is eliminated in Syria and elsewhere. It is a yimely memo to the President. Well done. I love this to save this world from destruction.

  14. September 10, 2018 at 19:37

    Mr. President we need to stay out of war. The British Empire wants war and will do what they can to get us in war in Syria. Please do not join in. You were right when you announced withdrawal from Syria. Please stay with that plan.

  15. elmerfudzie
    September 10, 2018 at 18:30

    Six months ago, Chief of Staff General Valeri Guerassimov telephoned General Dunford warning him directly, that should any US military intervention occur near Damascus, Russian forces would target fifty three U.S. ships (and aircraft carriers) currently stationed in the Mediterranean-gulf areas and further, that our POTUS be apprised of Russia’s new military weaponry and capabilities. At that time, the communication specifically mentioned a suburban area in southwestern Syria (Ghouta) and the, apparent U.S. plan, to invade it militarily.

    I shudder to think what new verbal warnings have been exchanged between these generals, in the latest telephonic chat. It’s important for CONSORTIUMNEWS readers to note; not a communique’ directly between Putin and Trump but between the Pentagon and those central offices of the Russian Ministry of Defense… hummmm, go figure that one.

    There are corporate interests who benefit from a perpetual, Syrian conflict. They too, further weaken what actions our current or for that matter, any POTUS can take. These are formidable groups, their financial wherewithal has an overpowering influence over elected officials, senators and representatives; a severe contagious disease often referred to a lack of serious campaign finance reform but I digress. Corporations who thrive on the oxymoron, endless war for endless peace, yes these entities depend on the Syrian civil war. They continue to financially exploit frictions between various religious groups in the middle east. For example; The KKR corporation, using the proverbial, revolving door policy, hired General David Petraeus, with a long term strategy to transfer funds and weapons to Al-Qaeda and Daesh. Another example, Toyota automotive, who supplied all of Daesh’s new vehicles. Caterpillar, who sold the jihadists the tunnel-building machinery required to construct underground networks and cement producer Lafarge-Holcim, who sold over six million tons of cement for bunker construction. The profits mentioned here are in the billions of dollars for each company, just to name a few

    Don’t you get if folks, the money making is just too damn good to stop now, even if we destroy ourselves in the process!

    So let us return to happier times, and end with a hopeful song..before the bankster ripoffs of mother Russia, before the broken promises of no NATO expansion. Visit
    and whistle the lyrics, and their meaning, along with me.

  16. KiwiAntz
    September 10, 2018 at 18:07

    Great letter but will the “MOTUS” or Moron President of the US actually be able to understand such a long worded message? Perhaps they need to edit this letter to soundbites & words that he can understand like, War in Syria BAD, very BAD; may result in escalation to THERMONUCLEAR WAR & WW3 with RUSSIA, VERY, VERY BAD resulting in extinction level event! Or someone could put this in picture form, like a comic book diagrams that could appease the stupid one, known for his oversized ego & notoriously short attention span? All jokes aside, this is a extremely dangerous situation made more critical because the US has gone totally rogue & can’t or won’t admit that their regime changes schemes have failed in Syria! So they are doubling down on this loss of prestige ignoring the reality that Russia, Iran & Syria have derailed their poisonous schemes & to save face they are now acting as spoilers, prolonging the conflict & misery by aiding & arming the Terrorists & becoming the “Airforce of ISIS”! How disgraceful & immoral to help the very same lunatics who attacked them on 9/11 & now their helping them! If you lost Family members in the 9/11 attack how would you feel knowing that your Govt is supporting the very people who killed your loved ones! It’s sick & demented! So the US in a sort of “Custers last stand” in Syria can’t allow this humiliation to stand & will continue its illegal occupation of Syria, against International law & Syrias sovereignty by trying to permanently stay there in a land they don’t belong in! With the anniversary of 9/11 coming up, why does America never understand the reason why people, particularly in the Middle East, hate & despise them & why they were attacked on Sept 11th 2001?! The reasons were clear, meddling in places like Syria & murdering their citizens results in legitimate greviances & creates Terrorists! And now John Bolton has come out to condemn the International Criminal Court & stating that America will never be held to account for it’s War Crimes or held accountable for it’s illegal behaviour & State sponsored Wars & murders of other Countries citizens! That is the very definition of a Rogue, lawless Nation, like a demented protege of Nazi Germany!

    • David G
      September 10, 2018 at 19:18

      Extinction is a Chinese HOAX! Sad!

  17. September 10, 2018 at 17:59

    As I wrote in numerous articles on my blog the soft coup in DC would spell tremendous danger to world stability. Alas, this letter is proof.

  18. mrbuttermaker
    September 10, 2018 at 17:07

    i think i have a better idea VIPS. Get the military off their butts and arrest John Bolton and all his other PNAC conspirators IMMEDIATELY ! Problem solved . You should have figured a long time ago . negotiating is pointless

  19. ronnie mitchell
    September 10, 2018 at 16:56

    If nuclear exchanges start in the little time I feel I have left and with the sorrow and anger I feel for my family and all the people I don’t know and won’t know the ONLY solace I will have is knowing who undoubtedly gets killed as well.
    Just speaking about the US I know that Washington DC is a main target so all those drooling war mongers of BOTH parties that have given multiple trillions of dollars to corporations to murder men women and children by the millions so that they can profit from resources they capture, will meet their end at last.
    All the cheering on CNN MSNBC FOX ABC etc. that happens every time the US is dropping bombs on people will discover the horror of being on the receiving end of something many times more powerful than what hit Nagasaki or Hiroshima and none of them will call it “the beauty of their weapons” (misappropriated from a Leonard Cohen song). Fareed Zakaria on CNN won’t be gushing over Trump pushing the nuclear button, Rachel Maddow’s last broadcast will still have her blaming Russia for Hillary losing to someone like Donald Trump. While Jeff Bezos’ CIA approved paper, the Washington Post, will be dissolved and his money will have become worthless, something he may learn when it was too late to matter.
    Many major cities in the US are undoubtedly on the target list but New York City itself is the belly of the beast, DC is just the mouth ,while Wall Street Banks, which push and profit the most from wars will be destroyed right along with its puppet publisher the New York Times. The paper that pushes ALL wars and has been constantly poking ‘the Russian bear’ to ramp up sales as for them both money is ALL that matters and they sit right inside the target.
    I live in the northwest near Seattle and the site of major arms producers, top of the heap of war profiteers who roll deeper and deeper in money every time a bomb falls or when it’s jets drop them on people around the world.My dear Senators and Congress members vote for anything and anyone that supports wars so they’ll finally get what their nonstop attacks on anyone against wars their final comeuppance.
    California is target rich from top to bottom and has many influential war promoters like Dianne ‘who can we bomb next’ Feinstein and Nancy Pelosi.
    Where I’m originally from, Texas, has more military facilities than any other State, plus the biggest one anywhere and is like most States is also target rich for incoming nukes and by hitting the Dallas area the CEO of Exxon-Mobile will finally pay for all the resource wars in which he has made many millions of dollars each month for many years.
    Yes one day this world may have peace, as soon as the war mongering germs infesting it are obliterated,too bad we are ALL in the same boat they are sinking. RIP.

  20. September 10, 2018 at 16:22

    Thank you VIPS.
    If Trump is incorrectly informed and criminally advise, you folks might just stop the planet’s destruction.
    Assuming Trump is allowed to read this.

  21. nevermind
    September 10, 2018 at 16:05

    The basis of our resource wars, it started a long time ago when the Uk and The Russian Empire competed to garner India and Afghanistan.
    Since then the Monroe addicts, policy bods under many different Administrations had an urge to get at Russias vast resources. The same ilk exist in the Uk and in some european countries.
    Lets face the truth, we all, the so called intelligent species, live rapacious unsustainable lifes, we are greedy and selfserving in total disregard to what keeps us alive.

    We can not afford to engage in high energy events such as nuclear war, it is not a good idea when we are expecting some years of high sun activity.
    To having then survive in a much reduced world, avoid of much ecologies for years to come many of us would disappear.

    Time to act and lobby cross blogs, to representatives, the militaary and scientific world out there.
    There must be no major war!
    Health and happiness to you all.

  22. September 10, 2018 at 14:02

    How would United States President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, National Security Advisor John Bolton and United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley respond to the following imagined scenario occurring in America?:

    Mercenary fighters paid, trained and armed by China, Iran, Russia and Syria entered America in March 2011 and since fought to overthrow the U.S. government across the nation from the Atlantic to the Pacific. The mercenary army was fought back by the American people (with help from Canadians and Mexicans) to the point where the terrorists’ “last stronghold” was the city of Chicago, Illinois. The combined military forces of China, Iran, Russia and Syria have occupied the Northeast quadrant of states in the nation, including Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware and New Jersey – in clear and blatant contravention of the United Nations Charter and established international law.

    The International Criminal Court (ICC) is helpless to intervene because nation state stakeholders have (thus far) rejected pleas to come under universal ICC jurisdiction.


    How would Trump, Pence, Pompeo, Bolton and Haley respond. What would they say to the citizens of Chicago?

    • September 10, 2018 at 14:32

      Excellent. That this template reversal of fortunes is not patently obvious to all Americans and to those who serve, is the greatest mystery of the age.

    • Skip Scott
      September 10, 2018 at 15:20

      Fantastic! Your scenario lays bare the ridiculousness of the current mindset of our empire loyalists.

    • Dan
      September 10, 2018 at 19:58

      Your scenario is beyond their comprehension. Introspection such as yours indicates a conscience. We are dealing with psychopaths.

    • Kieron
      September 11, 2018 at 01:38

      Bolton will stop at nothing. The man is arrogant and a war monger, in addition he’s in exactly the right place to get one. However, it’s a war he may regret. Once the fighting starts it’s unlikely the US will have the resources to fulfil its bravado, the American people may just wake up, after all unlike all the other wars they have been involved in, this one will definitely be fought, in part, on American soil. I’m sure Russia has strategically placed weapons platforms that makes that 100 % certain. So, blow your horn Bolton, but be prepared to take the consequences which will certainly come your way. Pass it on to your hawkish buddies, you maybe doing them a favour.

      • KiwiAntz
        September 12, 2018 at 19:25

        I’m sure that scumbag with the porno moustache will pass on the message to his fellow warmongering psychopaths from his bloody bunker, 300 ft underground while the rest of us poor saps fry like piggies in a thermonuclear barbecue of their creation? These murdering bastards are going straight too hell in their next life!

    • condor
      September 12, 2018 at 17:02

      They’d probably put them on the payroll with Lockheed Martin, Boeing, MIT, California Institute of Technology, Raytheon, General Electric Company, Booz Allen Hamilton Holding Corporation, Merck & Co. Inc., Cardinal Health Inc., Johns Hopkins University, Airbus, Corrections Corporation Of America, Exxon Mobil Corporation, Royal Dutch Shell, Fedex, AT&T. On and on it goes with hundreds likely thousands more can be added to this list in any of the thousands of subcategories. Dannon yogurt is probably on the list. Levi Jeans even might. From there the Octopuses’ tentacles probably touch every business in America somehow. The major world banks are the facilitators. All the top tier people in any of these companies have to do is sit back and count their money. Except when some country like Syria is successfully on the verge of taking back every square inch of it’s own sovereign territory and paving the way for it’s citizens to feel safe enough to return home. Apparently Assad and the Syrian people didn’t much care for the way the new, unelected Libyan Urban Planning Board had handled things in Libya. Or didn’t.

      I pray for Syria and their Russian friends to lay waste and mop up the last remnants of ISIS, etc. And for the U.S. and all Western “regime changer” fools to pack up their shit and get the fuck out of Syria. They were never invited in the first place…

  23. September 10, 2018 at 13:15

    Do these important letters actually get thru to the president?

    • LarcoMarco
      September 10, 2018 at 13:50

      Mister Anonymous will be certain to intercept any letters contrary to his clique’s agenda.

  24. September 10, 2018 at 12:25

    I believe based on overwhelming evidence, that past and present “western leaders,” and their so-called “allies” need to be rounded up and put on trial for crimes against humanity. These “animals” are responsible for millions of deaths, millions of refugees and a number of countries reduced to rubble in their illegal and criminal wars.
    See link below.

    • Ray
      September 12, 2018 at 10:32

      @ Stephen J. – You are SO right. If there were true justice on this planet… But one day, the warmongers & sociopath ‘leaders’ will get the karma they so deserve.

  25. Synoia
    September 10, 2018 at 12:23

    John Bolton … acerbic talks with his Russian counterpart

    He’d be expert in “acerbic.”

    • September 10, 2018 at 15:35

      On March 1, Putin told the US that Russia was ready for war. The US has now decided to make Putin fold or fight. It’s a high-level poker game, and one that could easily get out of hand.

  26. Realist
    September 10, 2018 at 11:51

    The hypocrisy of Washington is stunning. They say that using chemical weapons is a war crime (which it is and should be) and that they will unleash a major attack on the Syrian Army and its foreign allies based on the slightest bit of evidence that chemical weapons have been used. Once again there will be no investigation but just a knee-jerk response to events that may never have really happened. Actually, based on intelligence gathered by Russia several days ago and widely circulated in the independent media, any actual gas attacks within Idlib will be totally contrived false flag events staged by the White Helmets and other terrorists residing in Idlib. Certainly with victory within its grasp and under the threats leveled by Washington, the Syrian government is simply not about to walk into a suicidal trap set by the United States and actually use any chemical weapons. However, I’ll tell you exactly who is presently using chemical weapons within Syria. American military aircraft are once again raining burning white phosphorus down upon the Deir Ez-Zor area. (See: )

    Why is this not surprising, coming from a country that used white phosphorus to burn out every last human being hunkered down in Fallujah? Or which incinerated large swathes of Vietnamese forests and cities, including all the human beings therein, using napalm? Or which defoliated millions of hectares of foliage in Vietnam with the carcinogenic and teratogenic compound called Agent Orange? Or used depleted uranium shells with which to bombard Iraq and Serbia, even though this radioactive substance is also highly carcinogenic and teratogenic?

    Washington has NEVER had any compunctions about poisoning human beings quickly or slowly to death using chemical substances, even though the practice has been outlawed since World War I. I’m not justifying Syria using Chlorine or Sarin based on American precedents, I have no doubt that they wouldn’t dare. I’m calling out Washington for once again blaming its chosen enemies for its own moral depravities and war crimes. The big question is will the Pentagon swine resort to nuclear retaliation, the ultimate moral offense, if Russia is forced to defend itself in the Syrian arena by sinking an American warship or shooting down an American fighter bomber. It’s a legitimate question because Washington most definitely has been threatening to hit Russian assets (in addition to Syrian and Iranian ones) to mitigate any attacks on the terrorist strongholds in Idlib.

    • September 11, 2018 at 10:09

      Excellent post. Two things you didn’t mention. One OPCW found no evidence of chemical weapons use during the last false flag in April. Two Syria gave up all of its chemical weapons under international inspection in 2013. That was the deal made by Putin with the Obama administration to prevent a planned. Regime change if you remember.

      • Realist
        September 12, 2018 at 07:25

        Yes, I remember. Just a couple of probably numerous additional facts that might have been included, none of which supports Washington’s arguments or actions.

  27. Nop
    September 10, 2018 at 11:38

    Peculiar title on this.

  28. September 10, 2018 at 11:30

    It did cross my mind once or twice that the Op Ed guy was hired by Trump as someone to blame when he does get us involved in war with Russia. What “senior official” could ever complain about Trump’s lack of aggression toward Russia? Anyone saying that could not be working in the White House.

    Here’s Obama’s response to Russia according to the liberals:

    Everything published is starting to look like complete fiction

  29. Deniz
    September 10, 2018 at 11:14

    On foreign policy and wars, I am not sure if Trump is substantly different from his predecessors. While Obama’s beautiful rhetoric is awe inspiring, both capitulated to the warmonger Zionists and MIC. Bush, blatently followed their direction. Going further back, Reagan, Johnson, Truman, Bush sr., even FDR, “Our Greatesr President”, or the slaughter of the American Indians and slavery, the status quo, has always been state sanctioned violence.

    The only difference now is that the state, and its competitors, have far more lethal technology to inflict their violence. Unfortunately, the crossroads that we appear to be in, is inevitable. The only question is whether we can continue to kick the can down the road to the next generation.

    • mike k
      September 10, 2018 at 11:55

      Kicking the can down the road may cause it to explode, thus causing us all to kick the can for the last time.

  30. Stephen P
    September 10, 2018 at 11:08

    Here is an interview with Professor Stephen Cohen apparently one of the few sane adults left in the entire house.

  31. September 10, 2018 at 10:47

    I had 2 comments disappear yesterday. Realist, spot on, it’s not Moscow upping the ante, it’s the wicked warlocks of the West. I started to understand some meta-ideas this morn when reading Fort Russ, which has several articles tying together the Basra, Idlib, and Donbass situations as Atlanticists’ assaults in ME and Russia, which they are fanatic about destroying. The second meta-concept came when starting Douglas Valentine’s “The CIA as Organized Crime”; what has transpired in the USA is far beyond what we could imagine, and Stephen J.’s poems about criminals’ rule are really spot on. That the Pentagon says it will not cooperate with Russia to root out the terrorists in Idlib says it all, but the sad thing is that the US press lies constantly and Americans are either too busy or dimwitted to find real information like at CN.

    • jaycee
      September 10, 2018 at 20:23

      The Douglas Valentine book is essential reading.

    • KiwiAntz
      September 10, 2018 at 20:35

      Unfortunately Jessica, that’s what extreme American arrogance combined with blind Patriotism & a “exceptional mentality” gets you, a attitude where your brainwashed into believing your Country & Leaders think that they are better than anyone else in the World & that International laws & moral conduct & decency do not apply to us, only other peasants of the World because, hey, we’re the exceptional one’s & the exceptional Nation?

  32. September 10, 2018 at 10:13

    I believe we are in the hands of diabolical war criminals. See info at link below.
    July 14, 2018
    The Diabolical “Work” of NATO and Its Allies: Why Are These War Criminals Still Free?

  33. Joe Tedesky
    September 10, 2018 at 10:03

    Here Robert Fisk surveys the Syrian landscape before the battle.

  34. September 10, 2018 at 10:00

    You assume, and wrongly I think, that the President is acting in good faith.

    • Nop
      September 10, 2018 at 11:40

      I think it is a pro forma assumption to leave some groundwork for discussion.

  35. john m giannone
    September 10, 2018 at 09:58

    Well . . . how much ante would we put up, say in the case of countries
    on our borders and our control of what goes on in each of them? Let’s see
    start with Central America and then go to Cuba.

  36. September 10, 2018 at 09:54

    Another article of interest at link below.
    Finian CUNNINGHAM | 10.09.2018 | FEATURED STORY

    Skripal and Syria… The Imperative of Criminalizing Russia

    There is a direct link between Britain’s sensational allegations against Russia in the Skripal affair and NATO’s losing covert war in Syria….
    [read more at link below]

    • rosemerry
      September 10, 2018 at 15:02

      Thanks for the link. Right from March 4,Karen Peirce, the poisonous UN rep from the UK, started the accusations to Russia: ” How did you get the nerve agent into the UK or was it a careless mistake?” No reply was ever allowed nor any sort of investigation with the “accused”, and of course not a shred of evidence, 6 months ago or ever since, has been offered. The latest revelation is even more ridiculous than the perfume bottle- incompetent boobies returning to Russia to get praised by Pres Putin himself????? Peirce also made her usual lying answers and comments at the time of the fake “CW attack” in Syria, where witnesses clearly showed that no such attack took place, and the US/UK and other NATO members of OPCW did not even attend the hearing.

  37. Skip Scott
    September 10, 2018 at 09:26

    I think our only hope at this point is that Putin can somehow save the day. Perhaps he could make a public statement that any action by the US military will be met in kind, and that if any missiles fly, one of Russia’s first missiles will be aimed at Tel-Aviv. That should get the attention of the real decision makers in Washington.

    • John Germaine
      September 10, 2018 at 10:55

      My biggest concern is how will the American people react. If the military gets out of control and starts a war with Syria, I believe that the Russians can take them. But if Americans die in large numbers, will the people understand that the crazy fools asked for it? I think that the best we can hope for is for the people, and maybe Trump himself, to come to their senses and realize that the military is not their friend.

      • David Smith
        September 11, 2018 at 01:56

        Relax. Only one US Navy carrier battle group is at sea and its currently cruising near the Phillipines. If war was imminent all carrier battle groups would be converging on Syria and that would be the end of the Russian Navy. The USAF could shut down the Russian presence in Syria at will. But that’s not going to happen because its pointless, Syria has won.

  38. September 10, 2018 at 08:59

    Only PEACE

  39. September 10, 2018 at 08:17

    we have felt for years that Obama’s wishes were not being implemented by the military. So we have a military mutiny in process !
    The Deep State , is now in total control !

  40. Mark Pereira
    September 10, 2018 at 08:13

    Very well said Sirs; There are good people on all sides of the sphere;I think that Malina Trump should take the lead by publicly declaring her husband mentally unfit to be president (a) she will be a war hero (b) she will be an exelent replacement for a man who dose not understand even protocol ;kids stuff like calling people rocket man; exposes the caliber of a person.Dump him and all the parasites;

    • Shane Mage
      September 10, 2018 at 09:46

      Making Pence the head of a coup regime is thje worst possible outcome.

  41. mike k
    September 10, 2018 at 08:03

    This week is full of the brooding uncertainty and fear that characterized the Cuban Missile Crisis. Idlib threatens to be the trigger point for nuclear war. Idlib is the excuse for a threat from the Empire that Russia has made clear it cannot back down from.

    • mike k
      September 10, 2018 at 08:07

      The US is on notice not to cross the red lines Russia has stated in regard to Idlib. Russia’s determination to stand strong at this point is necessary for any chance peace has in the chaos of the Middle East, and the World.

    • Kim Dixon
      September 10, 2018 at 08:40

      “This week is full of the brooding uncertainty and fear that characterized the Cuban Missile Crisis…”

      Except there is no zeitgeist of uncertainty and fear. There is no realization of the possibility of a quick escalation into nuclear war.

      This time, there is no principled opposition to war among the American public.

      This time, the lack of knowledge and sanity may be the death of us all.

      • KiwiAntz
        September 10, 2018 at 20:53

        On TV, the other night was a little known movie made by a NZ Director called Roger Donaldson called Thirteen Days! This movie was made in 2000 film & was a drama depicting extraordinary 13 days period of the Cuban Missile Crisis & how JFK handled this situation against great odds! JFK never allowed himself to be goaded into thermonuclear war by hotheads in his Administration & the Warhawks! This action of not kowtowing to the MIC Warhawks would never be forgotten by them & JFK would pay the ultimate price for defying this lunatics! This excellent film is so apt for the current World Events we are now facing & how cooler heads & JFK’s Leadership prevented a Third World War! I encourage everyone to see it as it goes into great details on how miscommunication & misunderstandings can bring us to the brink of thermonuclear war? Unfortunately we don’t have a JFK or his close associates to guide this current Administration so the situation is far more dangerous than the situation of the 1960’s! God help us all!

    • September 10, 2018 at 09:14

      Is Syria 2018’s Sarajevo? Looks more and more like it.

    • September 10, 2018 at 15:43

      Robert Fisk is in the vicinity of Idlib. The Syrians and the Russians are softening up the nusra front and waiting for the rebels to understand they cannot win if they choose to fight. The rebels seem to think that Trump and Bolton will come to their rescue. We’ll see.

  42. mike k
    September 10, 2018 at 07:45

    CN is a lonely beacon in a darkening night; let’s give it all the support we can. As unlikely as a general awakening of the populace to our dire situation in the world today is, we still need to do everything we can to support such a possibility.

  43. September 10, 2018 at 07:26

    this is already a third world war. China Russia Vs US UK and France.
    Turkey, Iran and Isreal is also there.
    Israel may lose all the land it robbed from the neibours at the end.

  44. September 10, 2018 at 06:38

    An excellent statement of the situation.

    Unfortunately, what Bolton represents, as do Nikki Haley and a number of others in the administration, are the Neocons and Israel lobby.

    Those are the people pushing this.

    Just as with Trump’s (illegal) recognition of Jerusalem which was pushed hard for by Netanyahu and American Sheldon Adelson, billionaire and dogged Netanyahu supporter.

    Trump should never have agreed to this de-stabilizing illegality, but he is worried about being re-elected in 2020, and Adelson offers tens of millions of dollars, as he has done many times for the politicians he likes. He keeps Netanyahu afloat with money and publicity.

    The truth is America has no genuine interests of its own in destroying Syria, and Assad is a pretty decent head of government for the region, but the men running Israel loathe him, and Washington is constantly made to feel their pressure.

    After all, they want to keep the land they stole from Syria and perhaps steal more. Already, a Trump-appointed American official has publicly mused about the United States recognizing the occupied Golan Heights as part of Israel, and that goes against all international law and order.

    The Neocons and the Israel lobby are entrenched and powerful in Washington.

    But no one can say so openly in Western media.

    Trump has buckled every time these people push.

    He likes to be regarded as strong and decisive, but he is not at all.

    His weakness has been on display for all those who want to look, taking off their blinders of ideology. Why is Bolton even in his post?

    Everyone has known what a horror he is for long years. You could not find a worse character if you tried.

    There is a terrific interview in Sputnik from a rare American politician giving a fair-minded assessment of Syria. It is only the truth that many who study the situation understand, but it is so unusual to hear from an American political source.

    I assume the Senator is not dependent on funds and publicity in his state from the Israel lobby or he would never speak this way. See:

    • September 11, 2018 at 10:36

      Read the EIR interview with Virginia state senator Richard Black. He just got back from Syria and had a face to face interview with Assad.

  45. September 10, 2018 at 06:24

    Article of interest below.
    Russian marines land on Syrian shores in massiveMediterranean drills (VIDEOS)
    Published time: 8 Sep, 2018 23:20Edited time: 9 Sep, 2018 06:56

    • mike k
      September 10, 2018 at 07:57

      Thanks for the link Stephen. Russian planners are coolly aware of the ham handed tactics of the gang who can’t shoot straight – the US military. Thank God for those who can think and act outside of the hubris of delusional superiority. US militarists often end up by swallowing their own BS fantasies.

  46. September 10, 2018 at 05:05

    Additionally, you could use this situation to help the people of Iran end the Mullahs. IRGC is all tied up in Syria and Yemen so move while they’re away. Then turn on remainder of IRGC still in Syria – in northern Kurdish Syria, anyway.
    Can kill two birds with one stone this way – source of Hamas/Hezbollah funding and support is gone at the source. No need to worry about Syria being a highway straight to them anymore! AND Iranian regime is gone with a new interim govt ready to step in and start getting food and water to people and making trade deals with the West instead of China’s coming “New Silk Road.” See where this goes?

    • Gene Poole
      September 10, 2018 at 07:52

      Yeah, Jim. We see.

    • steelyman
      September 10, 2018 at 08:05

      Ahmad Chalabi – is that you again?

    • rosemerry
      September 10, 2018 at 15:04

      You are already on another planet.

  47. Realist
    September 10, 2018 at 02:20

    I’m not sure that Moscow is the party that has upped the ante. From my perspective, Washington has been upping the ante constantly for the past four years and has currently made perhaps what is an “all in” bet. (See my comments in response to David G below.) As per the ongoing PCR/Saker/Martyanov/Unz debate, now is the time for Russia to finally fold or call Washington’s bluff and actually start defending its allies in this conflict, which Washington and Israel attack with impunity, always on trumped up fallacious charges that the neighborhood drunk could discern and rebut with comparative lucidity.

    • backwardsevolution
      September 10, 2018 at 05:32

      Realist – that was an excellent response by the Saker, which I will provide a link for:

      Russia is damned if they do (there will be cries of atrocities) and damned if they don’t (the West will keep going for their ankles). I say strap a neocon to every missile and then ask them how brave they feel.

      • Skip Scott
        September 10, 2018 at 09:54

        Thanks for the link B.E. The Saker is always an enlightening read.

      • September 10, 2018 at 10:58

        Thanks for that link, Backwardsevolution. It is one of Saker’s best efforts, and THAT’S saying something. ray

        • David Smith
          September 11, 2018 at 00:32

          Andrei Raevsky lives in Florida but drools over his adolescent fantasy that Russia will start sinking US aircraft carriers.I have read nearly all of his so-called analyses, they are a murky slurry with almost zero content, and he is laughably bad as a stylist of the English language. Remember we are talking about a guy who fantasizes about Russians killing American sailors, I am disappointed in you Mr. McGovern.

          • Realist
            September 11, 2018 at 03:04

            What could you possibly know about the man’s “adolescent fantasies,” Mr. Smith? You don’t even provide any actual facts concerning his biography.

            Based on an interview he gave–I believe it was on Czech radio–Andrei Raevsky was born in Switzerland to a Dutch mother and a father of Russian extraction three generations an expat from Imperial Russia. He has lived none of his life in Russia or the Soviet Union. Most of his years were spent residing in Switzerland. He has several times expressed his total acculturation to Western European values and philosophy, with a religious affiliation to Eastern Orthodoxy. For about the last 20 years he’s lived in the United States from which his wife originates. He claims to have been a hard-line cold warrior opposed to Soviet policy up to the collapse of the USSR. After earning degrees from Johns Hopkins in the USA, he reportedly worked as a military analyst for NATO in Europe until losing his job due to opposing American involvement in the wars in Chechnya, Croatia, Bosnia, and Kosovo. I’ve never seen him cheerlead for Yeltsin or the vampire oligarchs who looted Russia with the assistance of American NGO’s after the collapse of the Soviet Union any more than he does the plundering Western neoliberal plutocrats. He seems to base his political allegiances on moral issues rather than expedience, and certainly not personal gain because he describes his own circumstances as barely clinging to an American working class existence. His strategic and tactical military analyses, which apparently you don’t like, Mr. Smith, because Uncle Sam and Uncle Shlomo are not the heroes of the tale, are painstakingly objective and based in as much fact as is known to the public (that is to say, not “classified”). He routinely references other military and political analysts, like Martyanov, and you will note that, being exquisitely methodical and deliberate, he always couches his predictions in many caveats and side bars. He claimed to be converted to supporting Putin’s policies because they were fair, measured and they worked to uplift living standards in Russia, never because he seemed aching for a military confrontation between Russia and the United States. Quite the contrary, he has always preached the same caution that Putin delivered in his analyses of the many crises precipitated by Washington. Maybe you simply don’t have the intellectual chops to follow his ideas, Mr. Smith, and this is what really frustrates you.

            Apologies to the Saker if I’ve mis-remembered any of the particulars of his life that he has mentioned in that interview or otherwise along the way in his many on-line articles, but you, Mr. Smith, have offered nothing of substance to back up your strictly ad hominem attack. Do you actually fancy you’ve scored points among the readership here with such drivel?

          • backwardsevolution
            September 11, 2018 at 03:47

            David Smith – “…he is laughably bad as a stylist of the English language”? Really? I had no problem reading his excellent, well-thought-out article.

            Zero content? Adolescent fantasies?

            You don’t happen to live in Argentina, do you?

          • David Smith
            September 11, 2018 at 04:42

            Realist, please block quote where I said Raevsky was Russian. As for his adolescent fantasies of Russians sinking US aircraft carriers, he has written thus on numerous occasions, including his latest screed to PCR. It is not an ad hominem attack to say Raevsky is a laughably bad stylist of the English language, simply flat fact and it makes his essays nearly unreadable. Raevsky is not an “analyst”, his essays are giant bags of fluff around a tiny string of opinion, he simply likes to hear himself talk. Realist, if you think I lack ” intellectual chops”(whatever that is), read my other comments on this article where I offer real “analysis” that is clear and concise.

          • Realist
            September 11, 2018 at 08:51

            “Realist, please block quote where I said Raevsky was Russian.”

            I did not SAY that you made THAT claim, but it is integral to his biography, which you ignored completely yet take him to task for thoughts you allege he entertained as a youth.

            In his youth he claims to have hated Soviet Russia. This goes back to hating the Bolsheviks that overthrew imperial Russia whom his family supported as “White Russians.” I give little credence to your allegation that his daydreams were of the Russian navy sinking American flattops.

            I think you are the one who owes the readership here actual evidence of your extraordinary claim. Citation please? Sorry, but, in spite of your claim, there is NO reference to any such youthful fantasy in the version of Saker’s rejoinder to PCR that I read:

            Your overarching implication is that the man has great animus against the United States, thus another point in elaborating on his biography, which has him working for American interests and living in this country for a sizable chunk of his life.

            “It is not an ad hominem attack to say Raevsky is a laughably bad stylist of the English language,”

            Number one, that statement merely reflects your opinion, or very likely your bias against the individual, not something that established as “flat fact.”
            Number two, his style has little to do with the veracity of what he says. Would you have slammed Einstein for speaking English with a heavy German accent? Your complaints on this are not only wrong, in my opinion, but they are irrelevant.
            Number three, his writing style aside, your repeated accusation that he wants to see American sailors dead, killed by Russians, is rather an attack on his character moreso than his argument, which you deem as having “almost zero content.”

            “it makes his essays nearly unreadable.”

            Try harder, maybe you’d catch the drift if you actually read what he has to say.

            “Raevsky is not an “analyst”,”

            Nah, it’s just an occupational title he held for years when he actually got paid for coming up with such stuff. Funny that other distinguished analyst/scholars like Roberts, Martyanova and Unz seem to find considerable value in what you dismiss without any argument except your unfounded biases.

            “read my other comments on this article where I offer real “analysis” that is clear and concise.”

            I did read your other comments attached to this article, but you not “da man” on this subject. You do have a well formulated opinion that may prove true or may be quite wide of the mark, because like most such analyses it has so many working parts, any one of which you might have quite wrong. It is certainly at variance with what most of the writers and the readership of this blog happen to believe, or fear, as the case may be. Most here do not flippantly dismiss, as do you, the possibility that Washington may make some really stupid moves that needlessly terminate a massive number of lives. You seem to think that Washington has no responsibility to temper its rhetoric if it truly has no intention of unleashing its arsenals on the Syrian, Russian and Iranian forces. You seem to think that it becomes the responsibility of the other side to rather intuit what Washington truly has in mind. That seems foolish and dangerous, plus, based on its track record, not really believable. Washington has done nothing but systematically escalate the crisis in any way it could from beginning to end. What you also must think, convinced as you are that this will just blow over, is that Putin has no limit to the provocations he is willing to suffer from Washington without a reciprocal response. The latter issue was the whole crux of the matter discussed by Saker and PCR. I doubt they were waiting for your “clear and concise” “real analysis” and I don’t think Ray McGovern requires it either, as disappointed you may be with him.

            Honestly, I would rather see what seems to be an existential threat not just to civilisation but to life itself amount, in the end, to no more than a tempest in a teapot. All one can definitively say is “we shall see” what happens this time. Numerous experts and amateurs have weighed in on the matter on these pages, but most have not taken personal potshots at pundits (the Saker) and activists (McGovern) as you have.

          • Realist
            September 11, 2018 at 09:02

            Response to all this was submitted. As usual, the moderation system here gums up the works.

          • David Smith
            September 11, 2018 at 18:59

            Realist, what I very clearly stated is that Raevsky has fantasies of Russians sinking American aircraft carriers and it is these fantasies that are adolescent, and he has expressed these fantasies many times in his essays, including the latest, “Reply to PCR”. And yes, the Russians must absolutely NOT respond to American provocations, that’s what Washington wants. But the Russians know that, they will keep their eye on the goal, and carry on to victory in Syria.

          • Realist
            September 12, 2018 at 07:13

            All right, you’ve clarified what you meant by “adolescent,” but I’ve never perceived his scenarios as adolescent, nor have I detected any desire on his part for any direct military action between the two parties to occur. Quite to the contrary, the Saker has repeatedly made the case that Russia’s military is significantly weaker, less deep, more confined geographically and much less able to project power than is the American juggernaut. This, he says, is especially true in the Middle East. For these reasons he has never wanted a direct conflict, and certainly not any time soon, saying the longer action is delayed the stronger Russia gets and the less incentive for Washington to start something. He says he became a Putin “fanboy” specifically because the man was cautious, methodical and never takes rash actions no matter how provocative the Americans try to be. That’s my read of Putin, though I have no training or education in the arts of war or diplomacy. As someone who does not wish to be collateral damage (nor see anyone else be offered up in that capacity), I have appreciated Putin’s cool-headed deliberation and the Saker’s analysis of the same. Still don’t see why you’re throwing so much shade on the Saker who is clearly not a warmonger. Go after those, there are plenty of them in Washington.

    • rosemerry
      September 10, 2018 at 15:17

      I am in the process of reading Martyanov’s book,”Losing Military Surremacy”, and his explanations of why Americans have no idea of real war to defend their land (ie at home, not destroying other people’s countries) while the Russians’ whole history and lives are based on REAL defence and the effects of real war in their homes, are breathtaking. Even experienced military men in the USA have not needed to save their land from genuine invaders, occupiers, destroyers of everything, as Russia has for centuries.
      Putin’s March 1 speech should have been a wake-up call for the USA, but in their arrogance the “leaders” called it boasting. I am sure many Pentagon officials know better. what they do is a different issue.

      • September 10, 2018 at 15:53

        Perhaps it’s worth pointing out once again that the Soviet Union suffered an estimated 27 million deaths (that’s 27,000,000) in defeating the Nazis in WW2. Some huge percentage of those were civilians. The US military, by contrast, suffered fewer than 400,000 deaths, and there were only one or two deaths of civilians, one being a Hollywood actress in a plane crash while urging Americans to buy war bonds, the other the band leader Glenn Miller, whose plane apparently went down in the English Channel.
        The Russians have been fighting off invasions from the West since the time of the Polish-Lithuanian Kingdom in the 17th century.

    • September 10, 2018 at 15:46

      Exactly right.

  48. Vuki
    September 10, 2018 at 02:19

    After WWI while making promises to the Arabs the British and the French were meeting in secret and dividing the region into spheres of influence. In a secret agreement (Sikes-Picot) Britain took control of Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Palestine, France took Syria and Lebanon and with it the oil resources. Arabs rebelled when they saw that they were lied to. Britain used Chemical weapons “to spread lively terror “as Churchill called the chemical attack in Iraq.

    From 1920 to the present Britain and France were joined by USA as imperial powers in the Middle East. Any democracy that demanded self-rule in the Arab world was replaced by US backed regimes which were in most cases a brutal dictatorship.

    So here we are back to Sikes-Picot agreements but now US has joined the other two liars France and Britain to continue the lies which the whole world can see.

  49. Cratylus
    September 10, 2018 at 01:47

    Let VIPS be very careful about their call for a cease-fire lest it be misunderstood. Here is what President Putin said recently at the press conference at the Tehran summit:

    “Regarding a ceasefire, we consider it unacceptable when, under pretext of protecting the civilian population, they want to withdraw terrorists from being under attack, as well as inflict damage on Syrian government troops.”


  50. Newland Bobby
    September 10, 2018 at 01:42

    It’s Bolton again taking Trump to WW III just as in Iraq. Why should such a Psychopath be in the White House at all? An advocate of perpetual war!

    • Realist
      September 10, 2018 at 02:37

      The Deep State and the bipartisan War Party constantly carp that Trump is at risk of blackmail by Putin and the Russian state, which is why we must carry out the witch hunt and effect regime change before he gives away the store to our blood enemies. Really, I think it is the aforementioned entities within the American government that are blackmailing Trump into making all these obscene cabinet-level appointments. How else to explain his picking people totally philosophically opposed to him, obstructionist to his stated agenda (which he outlined quite articulately in his inaugural address), and active in the witch hunt to remove him from office? How else to explain low life vermin like the “resistance” mole supposedly in his inner circle who bragged about his own traitorous actions in a New York Times article? It’s crazy to look for the causes of such systemic contradictions in Moscow, when every honest thinking person knows that their causes, just like any possible election tampering, occurred and originated entirely within the Washington Beltway.

      • backwardsevolution
        September 10, 2018 at 05:14

        Realist – exactly. Good post. I keep coming back to that inaugural address too, which he insisted on writing himself. He did not have to say the things he said, as he had already won the election. What is happening now does not jive with what he said, which also makes me wonder whether he is being blackmailed or threatened (himself or his family) by his own government.

        That anonymous op-ed, Bob Woodward’s new book, along with the cries for “impeachment” from the Democrats appear to be setting the scene for removing Trump. The Democrats are now downplaying impeachment, so as to not cause a backlash, but I’m sure they will act to carry it out after the upcoming elections.

        Trump is clearly a threat. His stand on mending differences with Russia, wanting to end NATO, going after the globalists and U.S. multinationals with tariffs, and wanting to secure the borders is in direct opposition to the neocons/neoliberals. Democrats and most Republicans, who are beholden to the elites, want him gone.

        It is a miracle he has lasted this long without being assassinated. He really must be riding a fine line on a daily basis. I don’t envy his position.

        This really is a takedown of an American President, and it isn’t about Trump. It’s about the loss of the republic.

  51. Joseph Shalant
    September 10, 2018 at 01:19

    Tramp acts only as an appeal to his base of despicables and out of fear of Putin.
    You all need to arrange to see this deranged president and actually read your message to him and then re-read it 4 more times. Then you can go home and rest assured that you did your best, but changed nothing. Remember to VOTE IN NOVEMBER!!!!!!!!!!

    • September 10, 2018 at 05:50

      Please post on his twitter page, that’s all he reads.

  52. September 10, 2018 at 00:24

    Does anyone know if John Bolton holds dual citizenship — both American and Israeli? Bolton, like Trump, likes to talk tough. But both would emotionally be excited by a brutal war to show Russia, Syria, & Iran “who is boss.”

    Is there any chance that US/Israel may decide to do a “shock and awe” surprise attack on Syria which includes Damascus to assassinate Assad? Could an Israel/US “shock and awe” military strategy include Israel using its nuclear arsenal?

    If Russia and the US/Israel openly become part of the fighting, might it spread to Israel itself? Would Jerusalem and Tel Aviv be subject to the same potential carnage as Damascus? If the war spreads to Israel would the Palestinians see it as an opportunity to take down the walls and retake the lands that the Zionists have stolen from them?

    • September 10, 2018 at 05:53

      I’d imagine he does, almost all of them do. I think that you’ll find Israel has finished with trump now, they’ve achieved their aims and will work on replacing him with their main squeeze Pence. You think you had problems with trump, you ain’t seen nothing yet !!!

      • Arioch
        September 10, 2018 at 06:20

        May be worse… If somehow dems win the closing up parliament elections, then at the last moment some lesser senator bails off passing her seat to HRC, then HRC gets elected as Congress head and after both Trump and Pense impeached becomes effective president of America

        • September 10, 2018 at 16:01

          You’re letting your imagination get out of control. Let me simply point out, for example, that the US does not have a parliament. Even if Trump were impeached by the House of Representatives, he would have to be convicted by the Senate. The odds against the D’s taking the Senate are very slim.

          • John Germaine
            September 11, 2018 at 11:18

            He would have to be convicted by two-thirds of the Senate which would be nearly impossible even if Democrats did win the Senate. But Arioch’s scenario is faulty in other ways; for example, it is the Speaker of the House and not the Senate who is third in Presidential Succession. So HRC would have to be elected to the House of Representatives to become Speaker. While Senate vacancies are typically filled by the governor of the state, Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution requires that House vacancies be filled by special election which takes at least six months and until then, the seat would remain vacant. By that time, the Senators would figure out the scheme making it even more unlikely that they would vote to convict. But the whole thing is meaningless unless VP Pence is impeached and convicted as well. And they don’t even have a case against him. So the scenario is a pipe dream.

    • Arioch
      September 10, 2018 at 06:17

      Would Russia and USA clash directly – that would mean Israel has little military “cover up” as both Russia and US would be way too busy to distract any significant army units into Israel command.

      I wonder if Iran would see it as “now or never” opportunity then.

    • Yeah, Right
      September 10, 2018 at 10:23

      “Does anyone know if John Bolton holds dual citizenship”

      Oh, much, much more than that. The man is interplanetary.

      “both American and Israeli?”

      No, but you are close. He lives on Planet Earth, but he is a native of Bizarro World.

      In most of his appearances he pretends to be Bizarro himself, but when it comes to attributing blame for “CW attacks” hemorphs into Batzarro (the self-proclaimed “World’s Worst Detective!”)

    • September 10, 2018 at 11:08

      John Bolton has dual nationality
      The US will fight back using any means necessary if the International Criminal Court ever dares to probe an American or Israeli, and will punish those who cooperates with war-crime investigations, John Bolton is set to announce.
      “The United States will use any means necessary to protect our citizens and those of our allies from unjust prosecution by this illegitimate court,” Donald Trump’s national security adviser, John Bolton, is expected to say, according to a draft speech seen by Reuters. “We will not cooperate with the ICC. We will provide no assistance to the ICC. We will not join the ICC. We will let the ICC die on its own. After all, for all intents and purposes, the ICC is already dead to us.”
      In addition, Bolton will vow to protect all American allies from similar probes – in particular Israel, which is being accused of perpetrating war crimes against Palestinian civilians. “The United States will always stand with our friend and ally, Israel,”says Bolton’s draft text.

  53. floyd gardner
    September 10, 2018 at 00:18

    A war with Russia will be a NUCLEAR WAR. Please, America, Wake up!

    • RnM
      September 10, 2018 at 04:59

      It is beginning to become painfully obvious the extent to which Americans are ignorant of history. Russia is not just another 20th Century US-created puppet State, the defense of which is kept controlled by the Pentagon (under the illusion of control of the US Constitution.)
      Are there any living 1930-vintage German NAZI officials with memory of the Eastern Front, who can point this out to someone possessing some sanity in the US seat of power. I’m simply speaking about someone with children and grandchildren, who would prefer not to incinerate their own genetic legacies. Does the Bolton Gang have any progeny?
      Perhaps the VIPS might attempt to reach these nutcases on such a visceral level, and ask them, “Who is going to be changing the radiation filters on your bunkers for the next hundred years?”

    • Yeah, Right
      September 10, 2018 at 10:32

      “A war with Russia will be a NUCLEAR WAR”

      No, not necessarily.

      The Russians might decide to finesse things by sinking one or two ships of the US 6th Fleet with hypersonic missiles.

      Then turn to the Pentagon and say “I can do this all day. But if you prefer to cool it then I’m happy to let you claim a draw. OK?”

      • Linda Wood
        September 10, 2018 at 13:28

        “The Russians might decide to finesse things by sinking one or two ships of the US 6th Fleet with hypersonic missiles.”

        And you can see the United States backing down from this? All out nuclear assault on Russia could ensue from an attack on our ships. And if we launch a nuclear attack on Russia, they will launch a nuclear attack on us. That is the essence of Mutually Assured Destruction. It’s supposed to prevent the situation we are in. Only if our leadership is insane, imbecilic, or both are we in danger of ending life on earth. But the United States has been elevating imbeciles to positions of power for generations.

      • rosemerry
        September 10, 2018 at 15:22

        It is probable that the Russians need to do something with their superior weapons to show the USA that it means what it says.

  54. Gregory Casey
    September 9, 2018 at 23:47

    The clues in this piece that point to the Treasonous behaviour lying at the heart of America’s Military Establishment with General Dunford both ignoring and dismissing Agreements made between Secretary John Kerry & President Obama with Lavrov & Putin speak to the absolute necessity to clear out ALL top ranks in the Military and within the Governmental overseers at DoD, Army, Navy, Air-Force & Marines ……. and specifically, within the ranks of State Department & CIA. Moreover, it should be absolutely prohibited that ANY retiring or otherwise removed Officer or Public Servant should serve in any capacity within Lobbying Groups/Firms or within Think-Tanks for a period of minimum 2 years following their stepping down from active duty, from service or from Government. The insubordination exhibited by Dunford as related here is worthy of Courts-Martial and nothing less!!

    • John Germaine
      September 10, 2018 at 13:19

      At this point, I confess to an admiration for Stalin and the way he dealt with his deep state problem. I’m all for cleaning out the bastards but would it be that simple if they refuse to go or if others including Congress and the Justice Department back them up? Stalin’s solution was to kill them; problem solved. Sometimes I wish I had the guts to advocate for such a thing.

  55. September 9, 2018 at 23:16

    Nice sentiments, but no more than sentiments of a bunch of retired old darts that at one time wholeheartedly advised in favor of interventions during times where many another covert and openly combat and economic warfare was directed against poor nations and their peoples.
    Note only one senior member “openly quit” vative in protest, and all recieve generous pensions from US govrrnments, and some recieve pay from speeches sponsored by Consernative think tanks funded by defense establishment.
    They have no political power and very small group of backers, most all of the same ex gov employees.
    To send a letter cost them a stamp, and sending a letter to Trump criticising him, is about as usefully as treats on a boar hog.
    Note they do not want to dismantle the system they helped put in place, they only want to
    improve the system, and hopefully further the careers of friends still active within the intelligence community.
    Once a part of that community always a part of.
    To the aithors, the whole system is built upon an amoral base, one run by psychotic individuals who are far from curable by actions of a sane populace.
    If such a sane group exist in US they are gripping their privates in fear, and quivering like a woman in labor.

    • mike k
      September 10, 2018 at 07:34

      Let’s give the VIP’s credit for doing what they can, instead of mocking their efforts. The voices of reason are few and seldom listened to in Washington, where money talks louder than anything. But we need to do what we can in an age of few constructive power holders. Speaking out the truth is our duty, beyond any consideration of results. Who would wish us to remain silent? We know who they are.

    • Llitchfield
      September 10, 2018 at 08:58

      “To send a letter cost them a stamp, and sending a letter to Trump criticising him, is about as usefully as treats on a boar hog.”

      I don’t think this is a letter “criticising” President Trump;
      I think it is a letter providing additional information that Trump may not have.
      Silence = consent. These retired professionals may not have political power—who actually does these days excpet various denizens of the deep state? Even Trump seems to have limited power—but they have their combined years of experience. Are you suggesting: Just zip your lip regardless of what you see as very dangerous developments? That would hardly be patriotic, would it.
      I think the point of the letter, and the appendix is to provide this altelrnative perspective (which is probably a majority perspective if you asked most Americans, who have no wish to go around poking Russia into the Big One) and put themselves on the record. If there is life left on earth after the reckless USA decides to test Russia’s and Syria’s resolve to rid Syria of terrorists, then we will know who was right.

  56. John V. Walsh
    September 9, 2018 at 23:14

    Last April Trump announced his intent to get out of Syria.
    Then a “reversal of policy” was announced at the State Department.
    The announcement of this shift in policy was reported here in the accurate Mercury News:
    Here is a quote from the report:
    “The new policy is we’re no longer pulling out by the end of the year,” said James Jeffrey, a retired senior Foreign Service officer who last month was named Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s ‘representative for Syria engagement.’….

    In other words, James Jeffrey would NOT say that Trump had “signed off” on it.
    It is not hard to see the Deep State at work here undermining Trump.

    It would seem that it is important for VIPS to recognize this fact in its call for a ceasefire in Syria.
    Otherwise, great work – keep it up!

    • September 9, 2018 at 23:37

      thanks John; good quote from Jeffrey; speaks volumes. ray

    • David G
      September 10, 2018 at 02:16

      Ok, boo the deep state. But is it too much to ask that the president remember for more than ten minutes which countries he’s decided to cease making war against?

      That level of incompetence invites defiance.

    • OlyaPola
      September 10, 2018 at 04:38

      “It is not hard to see the Deep State at work here undermining Trump.”

      Intentions and motivations are of less significance than outcomes.

      This appears not to be accepted with those socialised to assign blame to others whilst seeking to assign prime and/or sole agency and significance to themselves which others do not assign to them.

      Empires often drowned in their own ideological holograms; hubris being a land of opportunity for others.

  57. Joe Tedesky
    September 9, 2018 at 22:07
  58. September 9, 2018 at 21:42

    Article of interest at link below.
    US senator claims Britain’s MI6 is planning a fake chemical weapons attack on Syria

    • john wilson
      September 10, 2018 at 02:14

      No doubt the British MI6 has already set up a fake chemical attack in Syria with their terrorist pals there. They have been practicing in Salisbury with an absurdly fake chemical attack against the Skripals, the purpose of which, is to soften up we stupid British people into cheering on an attack against Assad.why they bother I can’t think, because we British are so stupid we make sheep that are being fed cannabis seem quite smart by comparison

    • Arioch
      September 10, 2018 at 06:24

      mr. Black lives next to the Norfolk Navy base, so he is quite realizing that when USA and Russia would fall out he would not make it to a bunker before all the Norfolk city get renames into New Nagasaki

  59. September 9, 2018 at 21:04

    I’m afraid that Wall Street and the military industrial media complex have deliberately joined to create a situation where they want a *non nuclear war* with Russia. They imagine that they can win it, and that this will cause a collapse of Russia. They cannot even beat the Taliban, but they imagine that they can take on Russia. And since 2014 they have worked hard to brainwash the liberal warmonger class into supporting this. Any countervailing view is now immediately dismissed as that of a “Russian bot”. And they have got away with it for excellent reason: liberals, as a tribe, are virtue signalling conformers to a party line, while neither they nor the zionist Wall Street plutocrats ever send their own children to the military to die in the wars begun with their enthusiastic support.

    We are headed for a war, and *if it stays conventional*, I am sure it will be one where America will lose massively. And good thing, too.

    • rosemerry
      September 10, 2018 at 15:27

      For hubristic reasons the USA seem to want to ignore the real value of Russian weapons and planes developed n the last few years. Russia understandably holds back, having experience of real wars, but once they get going the USA will see the result.

  60. September 9, 2018 at 21:03

    The climax came after five or six days, when our ambassador to Washington, Anatoly Dobrynin, reported that the President’s brother, Robert Kennedy, had come to see him on an unofficial visit. Dobrynin’s report went something like this:
    “Robert Kennedy looked exhausted. One could see from his eyes that he had not slept for days. He himself said that he had not been home for six days and nights. ‘The President is in a grave situation,’ Robert Kennedy said, ‘and does not know how to get out of it. We are under very severe stress. In fact we are under pressure from our military to use force against Cuba. Probably at this very moment the President is sitting down to write a message to Chairman Khrushchev. We want to ask you, Mr. Dobrynin, to pass President Kennedy’s message to Chairman Khrushchev through unofficial channels. President Kennedy implores Chairman Khrushchev to accept his offer and to take into consideration the peculiarities of the American system. Even though the President himself is very much against starting a war over Cuba, an irreversible chain of events could occur against his will. That is why the President is appealing directly to Chairman Khrushchev for his help in liquidating this conflict. If the situation continues much longer, the President is not sure that the military will not overthrow him and seize power. The American army could get out of control.”‘

    [Khrushchev Remembers, intro., commentary, and notes by Edward Crankshaw, trans. and ed. by Strobe Talbott (Boston: Little, Brown, 1970; citation from paperback edition, New York: Bantam, 1971), pp. 551-52]

    • Arioch
      September 10, 2018 at 06:27

      …and jues few hours before JFK and Khrushchev finally inked the compromise and ended the crisis, US Army received a command to start nuclear attack at China and USSR. Who issued the command remained unknown. Did JFK try to investigate? Maybe, but 13 months later he was impeached the hard way.

  61. September 9, 2018 at 20:32

    I have a comment lost or in moderation, but basically my point is that a coup is underway in Washington (Woodward book, NYT op-ed) to remove Trump, claiming he has caused chaos but the “resistance” bears no responsibility? I doubt he can focus on this VIPS message. So the Idlib campaign is coming at the worst possible time from the F.UK.US military. Now Germany says they’ll join “if Assad uses chemical weapons”. This is Shakespearean madness!

    • KiwiAntz
      September 12, 2018 at 19:34

      That’s the F.UK. U’s (Coalition of the Psychopathic War Crminal Nations)!

  62. Joe Tedesky
    September 9, 2018 at 20:25

    Remember when Obama & Kerry made the temporary ceasefire, and then 4 Coalition jets came screaming over the border from Iraq into Deir Ez-Zor killing 94 Syrian troops? At the time I recall many of us thought that this attack was our U.S. military telling Kerry & Obama to go to hell, and that all bets were off, or better said all ceasefires were over. When things like this happen, as they often do, then you can expect that the real buggers in charge aren’t who we all think they are. JFK met the most terrible of fates when he went up against them, as Kennedy was determined to do what he thought was right. This kind of backroom subversive action goes way back to many a naive king and his underhanded court in history, as leadership is a lonely place to be for sure. Trump better tweet his ass off, and make known very loudly how he feels, or otherwise he will be duped into a world of his not making.

  63. Aggie Lukaszewski
    September 9, 2018 at 20:19

    This President ran on ending our intervention in Syria – the wisest thing I ever heard him say. Now I have a dangling fragment of hope that his advisors are not pummeling him into “getting with the program.”
    I guess here’s where the rubber meets the road: is he a leader or a puppet?

    • OlyaPola
      September 10, 2018 at 04:45

      “I guess here’s where the rubber meets the road: is he a leader or a puppet?”

      Reliance on binaries is always a strategic disadvantage.

      Why not add “A snake oil salesman socialised where appearance is held to be prime attempting to interact with others who understand that substance is prime”.

      A blustering little boy lost in the company of others given to fits of petulance when “challenged”.

    • Seer
      September 10, 2018 at 12:19

      Sadly, the “blackmail” concerns that have been expressed are not from the outside (Russia) but from inside. If Trump digs in his heels on this the blackmail will start pouring out*. Consider, as Bolton did to the OPCW’s director, that “they know where his children are.” If “they” can blow out JFK’s brains right out in front of everyone to see -and I’m pretty sure that they can make this statement directly to Trump [and can completely deny it- after all, Trump has already been shown to be rather freewheeling with his “facts”] then they can do the same to anyone else.

      * Think that the neocons and the zionists are going to let go of their possibly last chance to pull off the last global heist?

      It’s one thing to sacrifice oneself, but it gets much hard to sacrifice your loved ones. One HUGE reason why The System tends to put forth “family men.”

  64. Abe
    September 9, 2018 at 20:15

    “The northern city of Idlib has become the defacto capital for Al Qaeda in Syria.

    “It is home to Al Qaeda affiliates, partners, and allies including Tahrir al-Sham – formally Jabhat Al Nusra, a US State Department-listed Foreign Terrorist Organization, Nour al-Din al-Zenki – a US-armed and backed military front notorious for its many war atrocities involving torture and executions including the beheading of a child, and Ahrar al-Sham which has repeatedly cooperated with the self-proclaimed ‘Islamic State in Syria and Iraq’ (ISIS).

    “The nature of the militants occupying Idlib is well known to Washington, London, Brussels, and the Persian Gulf nations sponsoring them. It is because of this knowledge that the West’s media monopolies work feverishly to cover up, deny, defend, or even excuse their atrocities […]

    “Idlib remains one of the last remaining strongholds of Al Qaeda in Syria specifically because of its proximity to the Turkish border – Turkey being a NATO member who has provided years of financial, political, and military support to militants operating in Syria.

    “Idlib has been – since it fell to foreign-sponsored terrorists – so dangerous that much of the governorate is inaccessible to the Western media and Western organizations sending aid to groups occupying it.

    “US-based think tanks have even written entire papers on Idlib’s status as a dangerous and dysfunctional epicenter of armed militancy. […]

    “From the actual militant groups occupying Idlib, to the administrative networks attempting to run the region – it is clear extremism now holds the population hostage and does so specifically because of Western aid the West’s own think tanks have exposed as ending up directly and exclusively in the hands of terrorists.

    “Should this support be cut, the fighting capacity of terrorists occupying Idlib would quickly collapse. Continued support by the West of terrorists occupying Idlib ensures a bloody battle to finally liberate the civilian population held hostage and abused by these extremists.

    “Idlib is thus every bit an ‘Islamic State’ in practice as ISIS was in Raqqa, Syria and Mosul, Iraq – and an ‘Islamic State’ made possible by extensive and fully conscious Western sponsorship.

    “Truth Aside: The West’s Window Dressing

    “Thus it is not Russian propaganda or a public relations office in Damascus exposing those occupying Idlib as terrorists or the necessity for Syrian forces to liberate the region – it is the Western media through their own incremental admissions made discretely beneath headlines and op-eds”

    Idlib: Al Qaeda’s Last Stand
    By Tony Cartalucci

  65. Maxim Gorki
    September 9, 2018 at 20:10

    Nero fiddled while Rome burned. Trump will be twittering while the planet goes up in smoke. Oh well, life is a death sentence.

    • OlyaPola
      September 10, 2018 at 04:59

      “life is a death sentence.”

      Given funeral ceremonies and language it appears that some do not wish to agree through various forms of deflection, and that some seek to project their do-not-wishes onto others with the same intensity/significance.

      This does not apply to everyone, some of whom express your notion as “Life is a process of dying”.

      Some of the process persuasion understand that the “United States of America” is an accelerator and facilitator of this process.

      Consequently some of the process persuasion seek to increase their agency in the process given that MADness has a different meaning to different people.

      • Seer
        September 10, 2018 at 12:30

        How about we quit being so myopic that this phenomena is somehow unique to the US? The US is not doing anything that other empires have not already done (though global reach is far easier in these days of technology hitched up to fossil fuel energy). And, when it comes down to it, one would be hard pressed to find ANY group that is not predicated on perpetually growing. It is the premise that we can grow perpetually on a finite planet that is the real killer. ALL WARS ARE ABOUT RESOURCES. If there were an infinite amount of resources there would be ZERO need for confrontations/war. The entire world is going down the homestretch of global growth and the players are scrambling to shift around the chairs: some have more ability to shift chairs.

        One of the big “hides” by Israel is their water grabs from the Palestinians. This is not something that is allowed into the MSM, for who would not see the theft of water from another as a crime? EVERYONE can relate to the need for water. And, we don’t want to look because it shows the reality that we face: access to limited resources. It’s one reason why we couch all the resource control activities under anything but that- we’re doing it to democratize, for humanitarian reasons, to rid the world of nasty rulers etc etc.

        • OlyaPola
          September 11, 2018 at 08:35

          “It is the premise that we can grow perpetually on a finite planet that is the real killer.”

          That is an attempt to conflate an absolute with an amalgam and informs the efforts of some thereby negating the existence of an all-encompasing “we”, but not the only “real killer” hence rendering “the premise that we can grow perpetually on a finite planet that is the real killer” an obfuscation through misrepresentation.

          Spectators tend to concentrate on their untested perception of “what is” typically rendered as an absolute, where as practitioners test their perception of what is in lateral process in order to facilitate how-to’s.

          Perhaps Mr. McGovern would care to comment.

          “How about we quit being so myopic”

          Your myopia is a function of bridging doubt by belief to attain certainty as in “ALL WARS ARE ABOUT RESOURCES” and of projection that “one would be hard pressed to find ANY group that is not predicated on perpetually growing.” given that “”This does not apply to everyone, some of whom express your notion as “Life is a process of dying”.

          “that this phenomena is somehow unique to the US?”

          That is not suggested whilst understanding that wise strategies are specific hence

          “This does not apply to everyone, some of whom express your notion as “Life is a process of dying”.

          Some of the process persuasion understand that the “United States of America” is an accelerator and facilitator of this process.

          Consequently some of the process persuasion seek to increase their agency in the process given that MADness has a different meaning to different people.”

          Framing is always a weakness in strategy formulation as in the example of the misrepresentation ” “United States of America” and the existence of “we the people hold these truths to be self-evident”, thereby obfuscating that “in the process……MADness has a different meaning to different people”.

          “We the people hold these truths to be self-evident” facilitates a type of myopia and the opponents and their would be emulators tend to the view that the advantages of dumbing-down accrue solely to those with agency to dumb-down, which in practice has been shown to be a different type of myopia facilitating further immersion in the wonderland of spectacle bereft of spectacles.

  66. David G
    September 9, 2018 at 20:06

    The U.S. has been acting out in other parts of Syria in the last day or so, with an air strike on Deir ez-Zor and a snap live-fire exercise around Al Tanf, but nothing relating to Idlib, or even any reiteration of the recent threats regarding Idlib, as far as I’ve seen.

    An optimistic interpretation would be that the U.S. has conceded the strategic impossibility of saving its terrorist clients in Idlib, and is compensating by throwing these little tantrums elsewhere.

    I hope that is so, but I agree with the VIPs that the situation should make any sane person somewhere between concerned and petrified, though I don’t think that descriptor applies to anybody of consequence in Washington.

    Meanwhile the addressee of this memo is fully engaged in his hunt for “traitors” (think Capt. Queeg tracking down who stole the strawberries), and so is currently unavailable to give attention to this minor matter.

    • Realist
      September 10, 2018 at 02:06

      Well, I hope YOUR interpretation of all the pieces suddenly being put in motion throughout Syria is the correct one, because it really concerns me that they are prepping to go all in on a full scale war, even recruiting Germany, besides their usual criminal flunkies of Britain, France and Israel, to make bombing runs in the effort. An entire American fleet packing upwards of 500 cruise missiles sits off the Mediterranean coast and plans are reportedly in place to finally implement Hillary’s “no fly zone,” denying all air cover to Syrian ground forces.

      Even Turkey’s Erdogan is posturing like a backstabber once again, warning Russia, Iran and the Syrian army not to mount any offensive in Idlib, reportedly because of Turkish assets amongst the terrorists. American planes are still stationed in Incirlik, as well as in their main hornet’s nest at Ramsdorf. For all the grief given to Turkey and its economy by Trump’s government, Washington still seems to pull Erdogan’s strings.

      It seems like this may finally be the massive deployment of standing NATO assets in the region which vastly eclipse any forces the Russians can bring to the game that the Saker has always warned of. This WOULD be a good time for Europe to display its independence from its American overlords, but don’t expect it to happen. Macron always busts his pompous ass to be Washington’s second poodle (after whatever good doggie is serving as the extant British PM), and Merkel is as erratic and irrational as ever, wanting both Russian gas and to slam them with sanctions, just for instance. These three lie to Putin’s face with impunity while brown-nosing whomever occupies the White House–seems to be part of the job description, because the names may change but the behaviors do not.

      I fear this is the moment in time when the recent debate between Paul Craig Roberts, the Saker, Andrei Martyanov and Ron Unz is finally acted upon in the real world. This is when Russia is finally forced to put up or shut up in response to the inexorable escalation of American provocations over the past four years. It has made absolutely no difference whether trash-talking Obama or duplicitous Trump has been the figurehead of American government. The bellicose Deep State has controlled policy without interruption or any change in attitude.

      Russia’s back is now firmly against the wall and they either must fight back against the American aggressor or concede this fight, pack up, go home and allow Syria to be overrun by Washington’s head choppers, with all the attendant fall out to come in Iran, Iraq, Israel and the rest of the region (probably extending into their next target of conquest: Central Asia), which Washington views as just another portfolio in the DoD, whether it’s called a secular Arab republic or an Islamic Caliphate. The caliphate model works just fine for Washington. Why wouldn’t an empire of high-tech mass murderers love a pack of primitive head-choppers running their fiefdom on the ground floor?

      • Litchfield
        September 10, 2018 at 09:36

        I fear that you are right in all points.
        God help us all.

      • Seer
        September 10, 2018 at 12:47

        I can’t see Germany going full-in on this when they’re hooking up so tightly with Russia on Nordstream II. Germany is dead if they loose energy. If they lose US support they can still survive.

        All that US weaponry is but a target for Russia. If the US pulls the trigger figure that it’s pretty much over for Israel, as this will be seen as the “last battle.” I don’t believe that the US is willing to risk all-out nuclear war: US chickenhawks won’t put themselves in any situation in which bombs and bullets could fly by their heads. So, that leaves any confrontation as happening all around Israel, where ground forces will be contended with. The most vulnerable here is Israel: Zionist Christians are fine with sacrificing the Jews. At some point Israel has to ask whether they wish to test whether they can survive the “last battle.” I doubt it.

        Syria, Hezbollah, Iran, Russia AND China are all going to line up together to push back against the US+Israel+Saudi Arabia (and whoever else not amounting to much- French might see their second revolt if they jump in on this).

        The “chemical weapons” card is likely going to get played. US will attack based on this as the propaganda can be molded to make this into a “defensive” action. The BIG question is whether EU countries (we know that Israel and Saudi Arabia could care less about Big Lies) think they can get their populations to accept kicking this dead horse again.

  67. September 9, 2018 at 19:54

    Casey, i thought of that, too, looked on the map, although Megiddo is located in present day Israel, near Haifa, I read.

  68. September 9, 2018 at 19:51

    With all the drama and faux drama going on in the swamp, there’s little hope that this message will get through to Trump. With Woodward’s book and the NYT “anonymous” op-ed, it seems there is a coup to remove Trump. I disagree with much of Trump’s policies, but the climate of chaos attributed to him has been set up from day one of his administration.

    The Idlib campaign could not be happening at a worse time, and now Britain has sent a submarine to the Mediterranean, France and Germany announced they will get involved “if Assad uses chemical weapons”. These are unbelievably malign political agents wielding now life and death over the entire planet, all for their own selfish, twisted political pursuits. The US and its western allies ought to be prosecuted for their atrocious illegal behavior, but where is there anyone to do it?

  69. caseyf5
    September 9, 2018 at 19:31

    Hello Everyone,
    Idlib, Syria isn’t the prophecy location of Meggido, Israel but it is close enough to have the “big one”! Just like WWI this could be the start to the beginning of the END! For those that know the reference good. For those that don’t then please ask someone to ‘splain it to you!

    • David G
      September 9, 2018 at 20:31

      For what it’s worth, the equivalent of Megiddo/Armageddon in Islamic eschatology is a place called Dabiq, which is in fact in Syria, albeit outside of Idlib (though not by much).

  70. Sally Snyder
    September 9, 2018 at 19:10

    As shown in this article, Google is doing its best to ensure that the world doesn’t see Syria’s version of the current conflict:

    There is no doubt that there is a cyberwar on for our minds. The truth is out there; now we just have to work harder to find it.

    • Litchfield
      September 10, 2018 at 09:43

      Thanks for the link.
      I think the whole post should perhaps be re-posted here.
      What is most disturbing is that “we don’t or no longer know what we don’t know.” The complete disappearance is also the news or announcement of the disappearance. That is, things disappear without a trace that they were ever there. Expunged. A blackout.
      So we are made blind and deaf and dumb and discourse is stunted.
      An alternative to USA-based social media must be created quickly.

  71. September 9, 2018 at 18:59

    This is when and where it may ALL get started…hold onto your loved ones and pray for peace…



  72. Zoli
    September 9, 2018 at 18:21

    I don’t expect the president to listen to such great advice. He seems incapable to do what he really wants to, at least when it comes to cooperation with Russia. The globalists want Russia crushed and are ready to pick a fight with real weapons. I don’t understand what is their endgame, nuclear war, total economic destruction? Who will benefit from this? World becoming an unlivable hellhole? I don’t get it.

    • LarcoMarco
      September 9, 2018 at 20:14

      “Despotic power is always accompanied by corruption of morality.” “Everybody likes to get as much power as circumstances allow” — Lord Acton

      Perhaps, the globalists are literally addicted to power. Always wanting more and more and more.

    • September 9, 2018 at 23:27

      Zoli–Obviously the U.S. One Percent and its Ruling Class vassalage have concluded the planet cannot be saved, have decided to opiate their fears with truly bottomless greed and hope to go out with a thermonuclear bang.

      There is no other rational explanation for U.S. environmental and imperial policy.

      Either that or — as some of the nuttier folks claim — the One Percenters and their vassals are trashing the planet so it will seem more homelike to their alien masters, a super-evolved, UFO-equipped species of intergalactic cockroach looking to add another bug planet to the insectoid empire.

      But it was really patriarchy — and its misogynistic hatred of the environment — that brought about our downfall.

      In response to which the nutzos are claiming the introduction of patriarchy by talking snakes, burning bushes and fiery wheels is the intergalactic equivalent of the European practice of murdering First Nations people by gifting them with smallpox infected blankets.

      • Seer
        September 10, 2018 at 13:02

        Armageddon is about the “great unveiling,” which is about exposing everything. The Internet has basically been the precursor. THE SYSTEM is flawed (based on the improbably premise of perpetual growth on a finite planet) and it is unable to continue w/o a huge war, in which the “forces” hope to prevail and have access to larger caches of resources: Hitler’s big prize was Russian oil- very few know/understand this. The US’s wars have all had to do with resources, either direct or indirect (for it’s allies or for transport channels).

        All con games eventually get outed. The Big One we’re currently playing is also being outed.

        Again, conflicts/wars are about the control/access to resources. As much as I have respect for the original natives throughout history, they too were human and, as such, were also under pressure for new/additional resources that, given growth in human populations, would ALWAYS find themselves bumping up against other groups faced with the same pressures. The reality is is that humans’ impulses to survive tend to put them more on the side of fighting one another than in holding hands and starving to death. Ideologies and such are only a means for justifying committing the ugliest acts (yeah, lots of sprinklings of “doing good,” but it’s only to help wash down the acceptance of doing “bad things”).

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