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Four Years after Odessa Pogrom – Neo-Nazism still rampages in Ukraine

Fascist elements that caused Odessa massacre still prevalent in the nation

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On May 9th, Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and some other states celebrated Victory Day, a monument to the destruction of Nazism by the people of the USSR together with those in Europe.

Victory Day is a day to celebrate the annihilation of Nazism from the face of Europa. We look towards the bright future, but we cannot forget our past, lest we repeat it. In Ukraine, however, for the past four years, we have seen the dark clouds of neo-Nazism overcast.

It has been four years, and a little over one week, since tragic events occurred in an Odessa Trade Union building, claiming the lives of around 48 people in an arson assault by official numbers, though by some sources, the number of those killed during the Odessa clashes, may indeed be as high as 397.

Keeping with the theme of remembering the past, but looking to the future, in this article, we will call to memory the anniversary of the Odessa massacre and the events that occurred, and also to prove with examples, that the Neo-Nazi elements which caused it, are still prevalent throughout Ukraine.

The Fourth Anniversary of the Odessa Massacre

For those unaware, the Russophone and cosmopolitan city of Odessa, built by Russian Empress Catherine the Great is located in south-western Ukraine on the Black Sea.

When Odessa was founded, it was a part of the region known as New Russia (Novorossia), to differentiate from North-Central Ukraine, which was called Little Russia.

On May 2nd, 2014, a group of fascists and ultra-nationalists, participants in the broader Maidan coup which seized power in Kiev that same year, stormed the Trade Unions House, and set it ablaze, by throwing Molotov cocktails. They prepared the weapons openly on the street, amidst clashes in the streets with anti-Maidan and pro-federalization Ukrainian citizens who were voicing their concern against the rising tide of Nazism.

People were burned alive, they were suffocated by smoke, they fell from the building, some were strangled, and others shot, others still beaten to death. Those killed included youth, older citizens, and pregnant women including their babies (obviously). Officially 48 people died, however other sources are claiming the actual number was 397, and we will explore this difference briefly.

Above all, I’d like to say there is no reporting on these events I can offer, which has not already been handled better by the experts who were on the scene as it happened. This is a four-year-old story, and as a result, it has already been covered extensively, so I do not wish to relive the events, which have already been described, and say what has already been said.

In summary, however, I can offer these observations and articles. One of the best articles on the subject, with regards to its graphical documentation of the horror that took place in Odessa was this piece by American journalist George Eliason. Below is one the more tame photos it contains.

The photos are hard to look at, however, if you do not truly know what happened, or doubt the accounts, you must see for yourself the evidence, provided by this American journalist. Some of the photos are highly graphic, however not gory (with blood), but there is one of a person who was burned alive and possibly raped, and another of a pregnant woman who was apparently strangled as neo-Nazis wave Ukrainian flags from the window.

This article contains key evidence of what amounts to a Nazi pogrom in 21st century Europe, however, the photos there are not all simply of the dead, but they reveal and expose the perpetrators in action. This is all for the purpose of documentation, not shock.

Examples of the non-graphically disturbing, but important evidence the article contains, is this video, in which the leader of one of the Ukrainian ultra-nationalist bands clearly gives orders to kill the anti-Maidan citizens and demonstrators.

In this video, one can see the pro-federalization citizens huddled up by the large Trade Unions House  , as the neo-Nazis swarm in and begin setting fires. The video is surreal, like the image of the Mongol Horde descending on Kiev which set fire to the Church of the Tithes in 1240.

That video alone provides an excellent example of what happened. I wasn’t aware Batu Khan was a “Hero of Ukraine”.

Later the Ukrainian ultra-nationalist extremist organization (banned in Russia) Right Sector expressly claimed responsibility for the Odessa 2 May massacre. They’re proud of it.

The Ukrainian law enforcement authorities have failed to investigate properly and bring to liability even those of neo-Nazi thugs who were originally detained as taking part in the Odessa mass murder.

Instead they persecuted and allegedly tortured the anti-Maidan activists who survived the massacre.

How Many Victims

Some of the victims

Take a moment to look at the faces of the victims. It’s important to understand, before we discuss the numbers of casualties, that these weren’t just numbers on a clipboard. These were people, they were burned alive, some were raped, some were strangled, some killed with smoke, others fell from burning buildings, survivors were shot and others beaten cruelly.

For example, Christina Bezhanitskaya, seen in the top right and bottom left, was born in 1992, was beaten to death on May 2nd, 2014, during the pogrom. These were human beings, and now they are gone.

As noted earlier in this article, there is debate as to the number of victims who actually died during the Odessa massacre.

While the official number and list of those outright murdered in the Trade Union House is 48, historian and publicist Aleksey Ivakin, an Odessa native explains in this Russian language article why he believes the actual number of those killed on that day, was 397, taking into account also fights in the streets, clashes with the police, the neo-Nazis also killed. This number is supported by a variety of sources, one of the most detailed being this Russian link.

Even if the number was “only” 40 people – which no one is claiming, that would still be 40 people killed by a veritable army of neo-Nazis. You saw the video yourself, the last time Odessa saw this was the Great Patriotic War against Nazi Germany and its satellites. Thanks to the West, the spirit of Hitler was awoken to wreak havoc on the long-suffering lands of Ukraine.

An Orthodox Church burning to the ground in the war

Why does west support Nazism in Ukraine

As Russians lay photos of the victims outside the Ukrainian embassy in Moscow, the Russian embassy in Washington has complained about the lack of response from the US.

This was a major event, not unlike a terrorist attack, in which large groups of people were killed by Nazis supporting a coup, backed by the US. The US has refused to comment on the actions of the people it supported, just like what happened in Kiev during the Maidan coup itself.

State Department official Victoria Nuland bribing nationalists with…cookies…seriously, we could not possibly make this up if we tried

This is a major issue which must be discussed, why did US officials support a coup in which many of the participants, and the general spirit of which was heavily fascist.

By in large, the Western response to this question, is to claim there was no violence in Ukraine, there were no Nazis, forget the deaths in Odessa, it was a tragic event, it was all Russia’s fault, etc. This is the western goal, to hide the facts of the Maidan coup sponsoring by foreign parties, the neo-Nazism in the Ukraine and the slaughter at Odessa, because once people see it with their own eyes, its impossible to not realize.

The US Department of State official Victoria Nuland had a very difficult time explaining before Congress the presence of Nazis, in the groups which Neo-Cons supported in Ukraine.

In the video, RT reports as Republican Congressmen Dana Rohrabacher from California challenges Nuland over Ukrainian Neo-Nazism.

We did have legitimate election before, and the legitimate president was removed after we had major street violence. There were pictures of people running around that we were told were neo-Nazis,” Rohrabacher challenged Nuland.

Nuland faced a hard time coming up with answers.

First of all the vast majority of those who were participating on Maidan were peaceful protesters. There were mothers and grandmothers and veterans,” Nuland said, but before being able to continue, Rohrabacher reminded the diplomat of vast presence of violent Ukrainian radicals.

I saw those pictures and I also saw a lot of people throwing fire bombs at groups of policemen. There were people shooting into the ranks of police. So, yes, there were mothers with flowers, but there were also very dangerous street fighters engaged in those demonstrations. The question is: were there neo-Nazi groups involved?”

Nuland could not provide a definitive answer, saying that there were many colors of Ukraine involved including very ugly colors.

Referring to these mass murdering Nazis as simply “ugly colors”, is almost as cynical as referring to the Maidan coup as a “Revolution of Dignity”. That is what Ukrainian sources, and official US Government sources (as of last year) call the Maidan coup to this day. Does this look like dignity to you!?!

The Maidan before and during the revolution of “dignity”

Four Years later, Nazism still rampages

One of the most powerful arguments against the false narrative being pushed about the Ukraine crisis, is simply to show these “very ugly colors” to the world. It’s very important to commemorate the victims, but that is only half of what this article is about.

If fascist elements in Ukraine were really a small minority of the forces fighting in the embattled borderlands, if Odessa was just an isolated incident, and the guilty parties were arrested and brought to justice, then this could have just been an anniversary article to commemorate a tragedy.

This article must be more than that, however, because Odessa was not an isolated incident. The people of Ukraine suffer daily beneath a criminal regime that allows neo-Nazis to rape Ukrainian girls, torture and burn Ukrainian people alive.

SHOCKING: ‘Hero of Ukraine’ Nadia Savchenko now accuses Kiev for Maidan Snipers

The fact that it was pro-Maidan forces, that organized the snipers which fired at both police and protesters, in February of 2014, in Kiev was revealed by independent researchers long before. I have written about this subject as well, at The Duran, though I highly recommend the very detailed link to the researchers work above.

Some more “Dignity” in the centre of Kiev on January 22, 2014.

The Ukrainian government is divided between oligarchs like Poroshenko, who care nothing for Ukraine, and wish to prostitute the country to the highest bidder, and their neo-Nazi enforcers who do the actual fighting.

It is worth noting, that as I’ve said before in numerous articles, there is a dichotomy between the kleptocratic criminal element, in control of the government itself, and the ultra-nationalist and Neo-Nazi doing the fighting for them. A good example is when Poland, a very Russophobic state, banned commemorating WW2 era Ukrainian Nazi Bandera, (a Hero according to Neo-Nazis), and called upon Ukraine to do the same.

Poland bans Bandera – Ukrainian nationalists demand Poroshenko condemn their NATO ‘ally’

This put Poroshenko between a rock and a hard place, he must please his Western overlords, but at the same time, his fascist subjects would happily overthrow him if he does not continue chanting “Glory to Ukraine”.

The real fighting is done by the radical Nazi elements, while the actual administration of the country is the work of greedy oligarchs, like Poroshenko, with hardly a shred of patriotism in their blood. No one is saying Poroshenko’s isn’t leading a pro-Nazi regime, he has said numerous horrifying things, such as in this video, when he said they will win the war in Ukraine, when Eastern Ukrainian children are hiding in bomb shelters, and their (Nationalist) children will go to schools.

He has no more care for the lives of children than the Nazis, but the difference is the Nazis kill children for ideological reasons, whereas their leaders indirectly profit from the war. Poroshenko is more of the “Let the poor idiots die in wars. I want to see if I can stuff as much money in my pockets, as I can chocolate in my mouth” kind of tyrant, rather than the passionate “For the Glory of Ukraine!” type.

He doesn’t have a patriotic bone in his body, certainly not the noble type, but not even the ultranationalist. Say what you will about those vile Nazi’s, despicable as they are, they love the fatherland and are happy to die for it. Poroshenko has no intention of dying for anyone, let alone Ukraine. His main goal is to rob the country blind, 1990s style, while everyone is distracted by the Nazis running rampant, and murdering people in Donbass. How can he possibly rob Ukraine blind while no one is looking, if he’s dead?

So while he profits, those “very ugly colors”, Victoria Nuland swept under the rug, murder Ukrainian children. It’s these examples of every day Neo-Nazism that must be exposed, in order to dispel the lies about Ukraine.

You’ll know Nazism when you see it, and below are some examples, illustrating that the circumstances which caused the Odessa massacre remains the norm in Ukraine. The people who support this violence are neither patriots nor Heroes of Ukraine. They are murderers of Ukrainian children, rapists of Ukrainian women, the scum of the earth, and daemons.

Only devils would do this to any people, let alone their own

Recent Examples of neo-Nazism

Below are some recent examples of Neo-Nazism in Ukraine, which occurred in the last several weeks. This is not even going as far as four years back, but here are several stories which emerged from different sources in different languages all within the last four weeks.

Ukraine neo-Nazis celebrate the Original Nazis in Galatian SS Memorial

Ukraine is a very diverse territory, formed by the combination of regions which often had less in common with eachother, than they did with neighboring countries.

For example, Western Ukraine was a part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and fell under the influence of Uniate Catholics trying to persecute Russian Orthodox Ukrainians.

Among those Uniates was Stepan Bandera, an infamous fascist leader in WW2, who united with Adolf Hitler against Russia (and Soviet Ukraine), as this declaration describes.

From Bandera’s region, an entire division of the Waffen SS, the Galicia division, was formed, which is considered a dark stain on fair Ukraine, by her sane residents. Traditionally, Ukrainians recognized this was a western plot to destroy Slavic people, however many Western Ukrainians fought with the Nazis in this division. Those who joined the Galicia SS division and other Ukrainian Nazi collaborators justified their adherence to the Third Reich in terms of anti-communism and by a reactionary racial conception of Europe, which embraced the Ukrainians but excluded the “Asiatic” Russians and, of course, Jews.

In 2010 the pro-US president of the Ukraine Viktor Yushchenko conferred the highest state honor of “Hero of Ukraine” upon Stepan Bandera.

Uniates and Ultra-Nationalists march with Bandera portrait

Uniates and Ultra-Nationalists march with Bandera portrait

After the Maidan coup, large groups of people can be found throughout Ukraine, especially in the West,  openly and proudly celebrating the original Nazis, wearing their uniforms, and hailing their memory.

Uniate Priest conducts memorial service for Nazis, note the Neo-Nazis in WW2 Uniform with swastikas

Uniate Priest conducts memorial service for Nazis, note the Neo-Nazis in WW2 Uniform with swastikas

In late April, around Hitler’s Birthday on the 20th, one such celebration took place. Ukrainian far-right activists dressed in Nazi uniforms and celebrated this dark aspect of history. Western media, however, was concerned that Russian media would use this as an opportunity to say “I told you so” saying this is “playing into the hands of Russian media

So, in other words, …they are concerned that the factual reality in Ukraine…will fit “Russian propaganda” if exposed. That would make it appear as if the Russian media are telling the truth, and it is the western narrative which is the propaganda, and literally is trying to defend and cover up the actions of Nazis.

Vandals deface Grieving Mother Statue with Nazi slogans

On April 22nd, a monument in Poltava, near the birthplace of legendary Russian-Ukrainian author Nikolai Gogol, fascists defaced a “grieving mother” statue, with anti-Semitic Nazi propaganda and graffiti saying “Heil Hitler” and “Death to the Jews”

On the first of May, Nazis disrupt the May Day demonstration

Neo-Nazi forces disrupted a demonstration of peaceful petitioners on the May Day.

Those are just three simple examples of Nazi incidents reported in the media, in the last several weeks in Ukraine.

The prevalence of neo-Nazism in Ukrainian Social Media

It’s one thing for a story to be reported on in the media, this is often a highly curated event, which no matter how unbiased the source was, can sometimes not show the complete reality of the situation. For those who speak Russian and/or Ukrainian however, and are active on social media, it is very easy to see how widespread neo-Nazism has become in the post-coup Ukraine.

This is NOT to say that all Ukrainians are Nazis and hate Russians, there are still plenty of Ukrainians who love and consider themselves Russian, and more so who have family in Russia.

This peaceful cross procession of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate demonstrates that the legitimate church can raise over 100,000 people, whereas the neo-Nazi supported and illegitimate Kiev Patriarchate only gathered a crowd of around 2000, so there still are good people in Ukraine, however many are afraid. In the video below, the legitimate Church (as recongnized by Orthodox Canon Law) is shown up until the 3 min. mark, and then the march of the nationalist church.

Here is another march, only of the legitimate church in Western Ukraine, which gathered around 20,000 people, around an old castle. Often times these marches are threatened by Neo-Nazis, who are too frightened to carry out their threats when they see the massive crowd of believers.

More than ever, the authorities in Kiev, and their militias try and suppress the people, many of whom would be more sympathetic to Russia if they were not afraid.

Still, it would be a lie not to say, that there is not a massive neo-Nazi presence in Ukrainian social media. Sadly, even if they are indeed a minority, the neo-Nazis march freely in Kiev and other major cities. There are now likely more Nazis in Ukraine per square meter, than any other state in Europe.

This is not a reflection on the Russian or Ukrainian people, as much as the pernicious western influence which has poisoned people’s minds there.

Here are some examples of “normal” social media posts displaying blatant Nazi propaganda, in the form of screenshots sent to me by those who were concerned and wanted to document what is happening.

Above, is a post with memorial photos of the victims of the Odessa pogrom.

And in this photo, we can see a user, whose profile picture seems to be a cat with a Hitler style mustache, saying that the second of May, the date of the Odessa massacre should be a national holiday in Ukraine.

Here is another example of pro-fascists posts across social media.

In this disgusting photo, the post is comparing the hellfire which burned innocent people, to the Holy Fire. The Holy Fire is a miracle in which Orthodox people believe an uncreated Fire manifests itself every year on Orthodox Pascha (Easter) at Christ’s tomb, which does not burn faithful people who touch it. It has been seen by millions of witnesses. Link to information and photos in many languages including English.

Sensible Ukrainian and Russian citizens do see and report these posts to Facebook as extremist propaganda, but Facebook seems to prefer censoring alternative media posting sensible and well-researched articles exposing extremists, rather than the actual extremists. This is the kind of insanity that normal Ukrainian citizens have to suffer under, all thanks to a Western coup which not only revived, but successfully revitalized Nazism in Europe.

Eternal Memory to Fallen – Never Again for the Living

Odessa – a beautiful seaside city founded by Empress Catherine the Great of Russia

I wish Eternal Memory to all the innocent people who lost their lives, when modern Nazis burned Odessa for the first time since the Great Patriotic War. May they rest in peace.

Beautiful Odessa

As to the living, it’s hard to sleep peacefully knowing such devils are raping, torturing and murdering across Ukraine, while the authorities in Kiev act like its business as usual, and the west ignores it completely.

Odessa however, is a Hero-City, she survived Nazi invasion once, when there was honor in Ukraine, and like in all Rus’, may God grant that there may again, be peace and honor in Ukraine.

Odessa – Hero City. Note the flag which says the 2nd of May

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‘Hell on Earth’: MSF doctor tells RT of rape, violence, inhumane conditions in Lesbos refugee camp

One toilet for over 70 people, rape, and mental health issues – a doctor from Doctors Without Borders (MSF) and an aid worker told RT about the dire conditions in the overcrowded Moria refugee camp in Greece.

Alex Christoforou

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Via RT


One toilet for over 70 people, rape, and mental health issues – a doctor from Doctors Without Borders (MSF) and an aid worker told RT about the dire conditions in the overcrowded Moria refugee camp in Greece.

The overcrowded camp on the island of Lesbos, built to accommodate 3,100, houses around 9,000 people. “It’s a kind of hell on Earth in Europe,” Dr. Alessandro Barberio, an MSF clinical psychiatrist, said, adding that people in the camp suffer from lack of water and medical care. “It is impossible to stay there,” he said.

According to Barberio, asylum seekers are subjected to violence “during night and day.””There is also sexual violence”which leads to “mental health issues,” he said, adding that all categories of people at the camp may be subjected to it. “There is rape against men, women and children,” and the victims of sexual violence in the camp often have nightmares and hallucinations, Barberio told RT.

Asylum seekers in Moria “are in constant fear of violence,” and these fears are not groundless, the psychiatrist said. “Such cases [of violence] take place every week.”

There is “one toilet for 72 people, one shower for 84 people. The sanitation is bad. People are suffering from bad conditions,” Michael Raeber, an aid worker at the camp, told RT. They suffer from mental health problems because they are kept for a long time in the camp, according to Raeber.

“There is no perspective, they don’t know how their case will go on, when they will ever be able to leave the island.” The camp is a “place where there is no rule of law,” with rampant violence and drug addiction among the inhabitants, Raeber said.

In its latest report, MSF, which has been working near Moria since late 2017, criticized the unprecedented health crisis in the camp – one of the biggest in Greece. About a third of the camp population consists of children, and many of them have harmed themselves, and have thought about or attempted suicide, according to the group.

Barberio was behind an MSF open letter on the state of emergency in Moria, released on Monday, in which he writes that he has never “witnessed such overwhelming numbers of people suffering from serious mental health conditions.”

Calling the camp an “island prison,” he insisted that many of his patients in the camp are unable to perform basic everyday functions, “such as sleeping, eating well, maintaining personal hygiene, and communicating.”

A number of human rights groups have strongly criticized the conditions at the camp and Greece’s “containment policy”regarding asylum seekers.

Christina Kalogirou, the regional governor of the North Aegean, which includes Lesbos, has repeatedly threatened to shut down the facility unless the government improves the conditions. On Tuesday, government spokesman Dimitris Tzanakopoulos said that Greece will move 2,000 asylum seekers out of the severely overcrowded camp and send them to the mainland by the end of September.

Greece, like other EU states, is experiencing the worst refugee crisis since WWII. According to International Organization for Migration estimates, 22,000 asylum seekers have arrived in Greece since the start of this year alone.

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Erdogan accepts Syria DMZ off-ramp, in deal with Putin (Video)

The Duran – News in Review – Episode 111.

Alex Christoforou

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The deal struck in Sochi averts a large scale Syria’s offensive on Idlib, as Turkey gives it guarantee to monitor what will effectively become a demilitarized zone.

According to the agreement, troops from Russia and Turkey will enforce a new demilitarized zone (DMZ) in Idlib, from which ISIS/Al Qaeda rebels will be required to withdraw by the middle of next month.

Speaking alongside Erdogan, Russian President Vladimir Putin said the 15 to 20 km-wide zone would be established by October 15th. The DMZ would require a complete “withdrawal of all radical fighters” from Idlib, including the rebranded Al-Qaeda affiliated Hay’et Tahrir al-Sham (HTS).

Putin also noted that heavy weapons would be withdrawn from the DMZ by all opposition forces by October 10th, which is a move supported by the Syrian government.

The Russian President described the agreement as a “serious result” further saying that “Russia and Turkey have confirmed their determination to counter terrorism in Syria in all its forms”.

Erdogan said both his country and Russia would carry out coordinated patrols in the demilitarized zone:

“We decided on the establishment of a region that is cleaned of weapons between the areas which are under the control of the opposition and the regime.”

“In return, we will ensure that radical groups, which we will designate together with Russia, won’t be active in the relevant area.”

According to Al Jazeera Iran’s foreign minister has hailed an agreement between Turkey and Russia to avert an assault on the Syrian rebel-held Idlib province, as an example of “responsible diplomacy”.

An agreement to halt plans for an offensive on the last major rebel-held stronghold was announced in the Black Sea resort of Sochi on Monday after a meeting between the Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

On his Twitter account, Zarif wrote: “Intensive responsible diplomacy over the last few weeks-pursued in my visits to Ankara & Damascus, followed by the Iran-Russia-Turkey Summit in Tehran and the meeting (in) Sochi-is succeeding to avert war in #Idlib with a firm commitment to fight extremist terror. Diplomacy works.”

The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris discuss the agreement reached in Sochi, which for now avoids full scale conflict in Idlib, Syria. Who won, who lost, and which interests were met with the DMZ agreement?

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Via Xinhuanet

An anticipated Syrian military offensive on the northwestern province of Idlib is on hold after Turkey and Russia reached a deal following Ankara’s guarantee on behalf of the rebel groups, experts said.

The deal was reached Monday by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Sochi, Russia, as the two sides agreed to create a demilitarized buffer zone in Idlib, the last rebel stronghold.

This agreement brings Turkey to a position of giving a guarantee on behalf of the rebel groups, the experts said.

“Moscow is convinced that it would not be able to handle the burden of a humanitarian tragedy in case of a military offensive in Idlib,” said Metin Gurcan, a Turkish security analyst with the Istanbul Policy Center of Sabanci University.

Russia has also secured its airbases in northern Syria, including its airbase in Hmeymim as a guarantee by Turkey under the Sochi agreement, he said.

Gurcan recalled a trilateral summit of Turkey, Iran and Russia held in Iranian capital Tehran early September, which ended without agreement as Erdogan’s call for a ceasefire in Idlib was rejected by Moscow and Tehran.

Erdogan’s proposal for a ceasefire by all parties in Idlib was rejected by Putin on the grounds that those groups were not represented at the table there, he said.

“Now Turkey has given a guarantee on behalf of radical groups which Putin earlier said that ceasefire cannot be discussed because they were not represented at Tehran meeting,” Gurcan said.

Now everyone is curious how Turkey has given guarantee to Moscow and how will those radical groups accept a proposal for demilitarization by surrendering heavy weapons and withdrawing from the demilitarized zone, Gurcan noted.

“Ankara has given this promise relying on its military power on the ground and on its capacity to convince armed opposition groups,” he said.

Turkish army has reinforced its presence in Idlib in the past few months, and Turkey has 12 military outposts with 1,200-1,300 troops on the border line of the province separating the rebel stronghold from the pro-Iran militia-controlled South of Aleppo and the government-controlled southeast, Gurcan said.

Rebel groups, including the Free Syrian Army, in the region are gathered with Turkish backing under the banner of the “National Front for Liberation.”

Putin and Erdogan agreed on Monday in Sochi to create a 15-20 km buffer zone along the line of contact between rebels and regime troops by Oct. 15.

The agreement entails the “withdrawal of all radical fighters” from Idlib as well as “heavy weaponry from this zone,” Putin said at the joint press conference after signing the deal with Erdogan.

By the end of the year, transportation routes between the key port of Latakia and Aleppo as well as the city of Hama must be restored, Putin added.

The Russian leader also said all heavy weapons had to be withdrawn from the zone by Oct. 10, according to Erdogan’s proposal.

Ankara has been warning against any military offensive by Russia-backed Syrian regime forces in Idlib, warning that it would lead to a humanitarian crisis and refugee influx to the Turkish border.

Turkey and Russia, along with Iran, are guarantors of the Astana deal which declared ceasefire in four de-escalation zones in Syria, including Idlib.

Turkey will deploy more troops in Idlib province after the Sochi deal, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Tuesday.

“We will need extra troop reinforcements. Turkey and Russia will patrol on the border areas. Civilians and moderate (opposition) will stay here,” Cavusoglu said.

Another outcome of the Sochi deal is that Turkey and Russia prevented a possible attack by the United States in Idlib, Naim Baburoglu from Aydin University said.

He recalled that the U.S. was giving signals that it wanted to intervene in the situation in Idlib, if Syrian government troops launch an assault on the rebel stronghold.

Washington recently threatened to take swift and decisive actions against any use of chemical weapons in Idlib.

“This agreement showed that the U.S. has room for maneuver only in the east of Euphrates and Manbij region,” Baburoglu said.

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Pat Buchanan: “The Late Hit” On Judge Kavanaugh

Wha exactly is professor Ford’s case against Judge Kavanaugh?

Patrick J. Buchanan

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Authored by Patrick Buchanan via Buchanan.org:


Upon the memory and truthfulness of Christine Blasey Ford hangs the Supreme Court nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh, his reputation and possibly his career on the nation’s second-highest court.

And much more. If Kavanaugh is voted down or forced to withdraw, the Republican Party and conservative movement could lose their last best hope for recapturing the high court for constitutionalism.

No new nominee could be vetted and approved in six weeks. And the November election could bring in a Democratic Senate, an insuperable obstacle to the elevation of a new strict constructionist like Kavanaugh.

The stakes are thus historic and huge.

And what is professor Ford’s case against Judge Kavanaugh?

When she was 15 in the summer of ’82, she went to a beer party with four boys in Montgomery County, Maryland, in a home where the parents were away.

She says she was dragged into a bedroom by Brett Kavanaugh, a 17-year-old at Georgetown Prep, who jumped her, groped her, tried to tear off her clothes and cupped her mouth with his hand to stop her screams.

Only when Kavanaugh’s friend Mark Judge, laughing “maniacally,” piled on and they all tumbled off the bed, did she escape and lock herself in a bathroom as the “stumbling drunks” went downstairs. She fled the house and told no one of the alleged rape attempt.

Not until 30 years later in 2012 did Ford, now a clinical psychologist in California, relate, in a couples therapy session with her husband, what happened. She says she named Kavanaugh as her assailant, but the therapist’s notes of the session make no mention of Kavanaugh.

During the assault, says Ford, she was traumatized. “I thought he might inadvertently kill me.”

Here the story grows vague. She does not remember who drove her to the party. She does not say how much she drank. She does not remember whose house it was. She does not recall who, if anyone, drove her home. She does not recall what day it was.

She did not tell her parents, Ford says, as she did not want them to know she had been drinking. She did not tell any friend or family member of this traumatic event that has so adversely affected her life.

Said Kavanaugh in response, “I categorically and unequivocally deny this allegation. I did not do this back in high school or at any time.”

Mark Judge says it never happened.

Given the seriousness of the charges, Ford must be heard out. But she also needs to be cross-examined and have her story and character probed as Kavanaugh’s has been by FBI investigators as an attorney for the Ken Starr impeachment investigation of Bill Clinton, a White House aide to George Bush, a U.S. appellate judge and a Supreme Court nominee.

During the many investigations of Kavanaugh’s background, nothing was unearthed to suggest something like this was in character.

Some 65 women who grew up in the Chevy Chase and Bethesda area and knew Kavanaugh in his high school days have come out and spoken highly of his treatment of girls and women.

Moreover, the way in which all of this arose, at five minutes to midnight in the long confirmation process, suggests that this is political hardball, if not dirt ball.

When Ford, a Democrat, sent a letter detailing her accusations against Kavanaugh to her California congresswoman, Anna Eshoo, Ford insisted that her name not be revealed as the accuser.

She seemingly sought to damage or destroy the judge’s career behind a cloak of anonymity. Eshoo sent the letter on to Sen. Diane Feinstein, who held it for two months.

Excising Ford’s name, Feinstein then sent it to the FBI, who sent it to the White House, who sent it on to the Senate to be included in the background material on the judge.

Thus, Ford’s explosive charge, along with her name, did not surface until this weekend.

What is being done here stinks. It is a transparently late hit, a kill shot to assassinate a nominee who, before the weekend, was all but certain to be confirmed and whose elevation to the Supreme Court is a result of victories in free elections by President Trump and the Republican Party.

Palpable here is the desperation of the left to derail Kavanaugh, lest his elevation to the high court imperil their agenda and the social revolution that the Warren Court and its progeny have been able to impose upon the nation.

If Kavanaugh is elevated, the judicial dictatorship of decades past, going back to the salad days of Earl Warren, William Brennan, Hugo Black and “Wild Bill” Douglas, will have reached its end. A new era will have begun.

That is what is at stake.

The Republican Senate should continue with its calendar to confirm Kavanaugh before Oct. 1, while giving Ford some way to be heard, and then Kavanaugh the right to refute. Then let the senators decide.

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