Anyone who has been following the events in Syria and the region over recent years would not deny that the stalemate in the northern regions of the country is not unexpected. After more than a year of negotiations – most of them without much effect or emotion – the United States and Turkey continue to fail to resolve their differences with regard to the establishment of the so-called “buffer zone” along the Turkish-Syrian border. President Recep Erdogan has repeatedly stressed that his country intends to intervene in northern and north-eastern Syria to secure its territory from possible penetration by PKK forces, currently part of the Syrian Democratic Forces, a Washington-backed coalition. The latest threats for an offensive came just as Ambassador James Jeffrey was visiting Ankara to hold talks
The article first published in americanthinker.com on 03/03/2018. Milton Friedman once said open borders and the welfare state are incompatible. This is easy to prove in California, where, according to a recent essay by Victor Davis Hanson, half of all immigrant households are on welfare and the state accounts for a third of the nation’s welfare recipients with only 12% of its population, even as 20% of California’s population lives below the poverty line. Recent figures published in Europe’s economic powerhouse, Germany, indicate that following Angela Merkel’s disastrous open-borders experiment of two and a half years ago, that country is well on its way to joining California in proving the wisdom of Friedman’s admonition, to the huge detriment of the German people. Official figures of the German statistical office show that beginning
When the „First Funding Conference of Coordinate Council of the Russian Compatriots of the State of Qatar” took place in Doha in October 2016, some observers were surprised to find out that it represented 7,000 Russian nationals permanently residing in Qatar. According to the Russian embassy in Doha, these include “physicians, engineers, sports coaches, pilots, musicians of the Qatari Philharmonic Orchestra and etc.”( “etc.” most likely also includes SVR/GRU operatives). This is an impressive number for a country of less than 2 million, particularly since the last such figures given by the Russian embassy in 2014 were only 2,500 people. This dramatic, almost 300%, growth has been directly related to the new rapprochement between the two countries, which started in 2016 following the visit to Moscow of Qatar’s emir Tamim
Moscow is not a reliable partner for Washington in combating international terrorism. On the contrary, the Kremlin supports forces in the Middle East and elsewhere that oppose the US. It aims to deflect violent jihadism toward the West both to shield Russia from being targeted and to weaken America’s global influence. Vladimir Putin’s Russia possesses all the attributes of a terrorist sponsor, by engaging in terrorist attacks against its own population and playing a significant role in developing terrorist networks outside its borders. Russia’s security services have engaged in domestic terrorism both to subdue and manipulate public opinion. The most notorious outrage occurred in September 1999 shortly before Putin was appointed President. John Dunlop, a distinguished scholar at the Hoover Institution, in his landmark book The Moscow Bombings of
By launching cruise missile strikes on government forces in Syria, successfully obliterating dozens of ISIS terrorists in Afghanistan, and dispatching a military flotilla to confront the North Korean regime, the Trump administration has sent four strong messages: to dictators, allies, Russia, and Western populists. Trump’s moves overturn several years of fruitless diplomacy and empty threats by the Obama administration and appear to be working. Although the cruise military strike in Syria only involved one airfield, it was swift and decisive, thereby demonstrating to dictators such as Bashar al-Assad that the new White House values hard deeds above tough words. White House action was in stark contrast with the previous administration, which warned of consequences for war crimes and the use of prohibited chemical weapons but did not deliver
Russia’s president Vladimir Putin will fall from power when another cataclysmic event reveals to his supporters among Russia’s rich and corrupt oligarchs that the emperor has no clothes, that his credibility as the country’s authoritarian leader is exhausted. This was the conclusion of several groups of senior Russian strategists convened in 2016 for The Jamestown Foundation’s “Russia in Decline” project. What might such a cataclysmic event be? Most of the strategists pointed to either “another Kursk,” referring to unexplained accident that sank Russia’s nuclear submarine in the Barents Sea in 2000 killing all 118 sailors, or a major military defeat. Imagine the Russian leader’s skimpy wardrobe in the aftermath of the horrific Syrian regime’s gas attacks on civilians, apparently with Russia’s sanction or support, which bears the hallmarks of
One of the most humiliating moments for Russia in the US Navy’s Tomahawk cruise missile attack on the al-Shayrat Syrian Air Force base is that the Kremlin had reassured the world that it controls the skies over Syria thanks to the deployment of the S-400 and S-300 air defense systems. This, the logic went on, allowed it to call the shots and enforce compliance with its interests in the air above the territory controlled by Assad’s loyalist troops. According to claims by top brass in Moscow, the systems provided reliable protection against US cruise missiles and stealth technologies. Russia had reassured both President Assad and the world that it is capable of protecting not only its own bases in Syria, but also Assad’s planes bombing the opposition.
The question as to whether the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) is a terrorist organization is being discussed at length in the public domain. Analysts became interested in the problem after President Trump recently stated that he was giving consideration as to whether to propose that the IRGC is added to the list of recognized terrorist organizations by the United States. For this to happen there must be clear evidence of terrorist activities performed by the organization in other countries. Meanwhile, experts are divided in their assessment of whether it would have positive consequences, if it were to happen. Some of the main issues that engage public opinion are: What is the Revolutionary Guard Corps? In what military operations have its members and leaders been involved? Is there