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Read This Before The Government Uses The Orlando Shooting To Start Another War

The gordian knot of Syria, created by United States foreign policy, is leading the US towards conflict with Russia.

The Duran

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Submitted by Claire Bernish via TheAntiMedia.org,

Late Thursday evening, the Wall Street Journal reported, 51 State Department officials signed a statement condemning U.S. policy in Syria in which they repeatedly call for “targeted military strikes against the Damascus government and urging regime change as the only way to defeat Islamic State.”

“In other words,” as Zero Hedge summarized, “over 50 top ‘diplomats’ are urging to eliminate [Syrian Pres. Bashar al] Assad in order to ‘defeat ISIS’, the same ISIS which top US ‘diplomats’ had unleashed previously in order to … eliminate Assad.”

This gordian knot created by United States foreign policy — and intensified by that same policy — means not only could war with Syria be on the horizon, but if that happens, the U.S. could be facing a far more serious threat.

While discontented officials used what’s known as the “Dissent Channel” — “an official forum that allows employees to express opposing views,” State Department spokesman John Kirby explained in the WSJ — Saudi government officials employed more direct means to press their interests with the U.S. in Syria.

In a meeting with President Obama on Friday, Saudi foreign minister Adel al Jubair asserted, “Saudi Arabia supports a more aggressive military approach in Syria to get Assad to agree to a political solution,” as CBS’ Mark Knoller tweeted.

Of course, this meeting and the push for increased military force couldn’t be more timely to drum up public support, as a heated national debate has ensued following the deadly attack on an Orlando nightclub purportedly carried out by Omar Mateen — who pledged loyalty to ISIS as he killed 49 people and wounded over 50 others.

Despite the CIA’s report acknowledging it found no tangible connectionsbetween Mateen and the so-called Islamic state — also released on Friday — the narrative concerning his ISIS ties saturated mainstream headlinesfor days, almost certainly cementing the link in the public’s mind.

Disgruntled politicians eager to overthrow Assad — thus also carrying out Saudi goals — can now facilely flip the script to assert deposing the Syrian government is necessary in the fight against everyone’s enemy, the Islamic State.

“Failure to stem Assad’s flagrant abuses will only bolster the ideological appeal of groups such as Daesh [ISIS, etc.], even as they endure tactical setbacks on the battlefield,” the WSJ reported the dissenting cable stated.

But concerns about bloating ISIS’ following borders on comical, except for the potential waterfall of repercussions from carrying out targeted strikes on the Syrian government, considering the U.S. government, itself, once expressed the desire for the rise of an Islamic State to aid in the overthrow of — you guessed it — Assad.

According to declassified documents obtained by Judicial Watch last year:

“If the situation unravels there is the possibility of establishing a declared or undeclared Salafist Principality in eastern Syria (Hasaka and Der Zor), and this is exactly what the supporting powers to the opposition want, in order to isolate the Syrian regime, which is considered the strategic depth of the Shia expansion (Iraq and Iran).”

Former Director of National Intelligence and retired U.S. Army Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, however, spoke to Al Jazeera about this ill-fated, notorious strategical blunder.

“You’re on record as saying that the handling of Syria by this administration has been a mistake. Many people would argue that the U.S. actually saw the rise of ISIL coming and turned a blind eye, or even encouraged as a counterpoint to Assad,” journalist Mehdi Hasan prefaced his query, adding,“The U.S. saw the ISIL caliphate coming and did nothing.”

Flynn responded, “Yeah, I think that we — where we missed the point. I mean, where we totally blew it, I think, was in the very beginning.”

Besides backing and blessings from the Saudi government for aggression on the Syrian front, dissent among U.S. officials couldn’t be more imperative in their eyes, because, as the WSJ reported:

“The internal cable may be an attempt to shape the foreign policy outlook for the next administration, the official familiar with the document said. President Barack Obama has balked at taking military action against Mr. Assad, while the Democratic hopeful Hillary Clinton has promised a more hawkish stance against the Syrian leader. Republican candidate Donald Trump has said he would hit Islamic State hard but has also said he would be prepared to work with Russia and Syria.”

In fact, as Zero Hedge also noted, an albeit contested report from earlier this week claimed Saudi Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman made comments including “a claim that Riyadh has provided 20 percent of the total funding to” Clinton’s campaign.

Politicians and officials, in other words, are fast aligning a narrative touting the need to wage war with Syria in order to have it carried out by the candidate they assume will next take the White House.

And despite being a risky move in its own right — not to mention a potentially superficial, if not muddying, solution to an almost solely U.S.-created problem — ramping up military airstrikes in Syria could quite literally spark war with Russia.

“The Russian Air Force bombed U.S.-trained rebels in southern Syria not once, but twice Thursday, and the second wave of attacks came after the U.S. military called Russia on an emergency hotline to demand that it stop,” an unnamed defense official with knowledge of the situation told Fox News.

Russia has repeatedly warned against U.S. moves to oust Assad, which President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, reiterated following the tense situation Thursday and the report calling for increased military targeting of the Syrian government saying, it “wouldn’t help a successful fight against terrorism and could plunge the region into total chaos.”

As recently as February, Saudi Arabia proposed sending its own troops to join the fight against ISIS — which Russia wholly condemned. As head of the State Duma committee, Pavel Krasheninnikov, warned, “Syria has to give official consent, to invite, otherwise it will be a war.”

Now, it appears, that war might be closer than ever.

Syria doesn’t constitute the only arena of contention between the U.S. and Russia. As Anti-Media reported this week, continued buildup of NATO forces along the old Cold War foe’s borders in the Balkans and Poland — and particularly also in the Black Sea — has provoked Russia sufficiently enough for officials to caution the move might amount to aggression.

“This is not NATO’s maritime space and it has no relation to the alliance,”Russia’s director of European affairs told Interfax.

Nonetheless, the U.S. and E.U. have proffered a policy whereby defense of its installations on foreign soil is being carried out under the cloak of the NATO alliance — possibly with the intent of posturing dominance in the region to create a buffer zone for operations in Syria.

Pipelines through Syria would specifically allow oil and natural gas to flow to the European Union, which currently sources that fuel primarily from Russia. In other words, if Russia wants to defend its profitable relationship with the E.U., it must defend against the U.S.-led, Saudi-supported overthrow of its Syrian ally, Assad.

Meanwhile, civilians in Syria have been treated like cannon fodder and are fleeing for their lives — but the intensifying geopolitical maneuvers appear more likely than ever to have brought us all to the brink of a third world war.

Via: http://theantimedia.org/read-this-before-the-government-uses-the-orlando-shooting-to-start-another-war/

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BREXIT chaos, as May’s cabinet crumbles (Video)

The Duran Quick Take: Episode 18.

Alex Christoforou

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The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris take a quick look at the various scenarios now facing a crumbling May government, as the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement is forcing cabinet members to resign in rapid succession. The weekend ahead is fraught with uncertainty for the UK and its position within, or outside, the European Union.

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If Theresa May’s ill-fated Brexit Withdrawal Agreement is eventually rejected this could trigger a vote of no confidence, snap elections or even a new referendum…

Here are six possible scenarios facing Theresa May and the UK (via The Guardian)

1 Parliament blocks Theresa May’s draft withdrawal agreement and political declarations

May faces an enormous task to win parliamentary approval, given that Labour, the SNP, the DUP and 51 Tories have said they will not vote for it.

If the remaining 27 EU member states sign off the draft agreement on 25 November, the government will have to win over MPs at a crucial vote in early December.

If May loses the vote, she has 21 days to put forward a new plan. If she wins, she is safe for now.

2 May withdraws the current draft agreement

The prime minister could decide that she will not get the draft agreement through parliament and could seek to renegotiate with the EU.

This would anger Tory backbenchers and Brussels and would be seen as a humiliation for her government. It might spark a leadership contest too.

3 Extend article 50

May could ask the European council to extend article 50, giving her more time to come up with a deal that could be passed by parliament – at present, the UK will leave on 29 March 2019.

Such a request would not necessarily be granted. Some EU governments are under pressure from populist parties to get the UK out of the EU as soon as possible.

4 Conservative MPs trigger a vote of no confidence in the prime minister

If Conservative MPs believe May is no longer fit for office, they could trigger a no-confidence vote.

Members of the European Research Group claim that Graham Brady, the chair of the powerful 1922 Committee, will receive the necessary 48 letters this week.

A vote could be held as soon as early next week. All Tory MPs would be asked to vote for or against their leader. If May wins, she cannot be challenged for at least 12 months. If she loses, there would be a leadership contest to decide who will become prime minister.

5 General election – three possible routes

If May fails to get support for the current deal, she could call a snap general election.

She would table a parliamentary vote for a general election that would have to be passed by two thirds of MPs. She would then set an election date, which could be by the end of January.

This is an unlikely option. May’s political credibility was severely damaged when she called a snap election in 2017, leading to the loss of the Conservative party’s majority.

Alternatively, a general election could be called if a simple majority of MPs vote that they have no confidence in the government. Seven Tory MPs, or all of the DUP MPs, would have to turn against the government for it to lose the vote, triggering a two-week cooling-off period. May would remain in office while MPs negotiate a new government.

Another route to a general election would be for the government to repeal or amend the Fixed-term Parliaments Act which creates a five-year period between general elections. A new act would have to be passed through both the Commons and the Lords – an unlikely scenario.

6 Second referendum

May could decide it is impossible to find a possible draft deal that will be approved by parliament and go for a people’s vote.

The meaningful vote could be amended to allow MPs to vote on whether the country holds a second referendum. It is unclear whether enough MPs would back a second referendum and May has ruled it out.

 

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Brexit Withdrawal Agreement may lead to Theresa May’s downfall (Video)

The Duran – News in Review – Episode 151.

Alex Christoforou

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The Brexit Withdrawal Agreement has been published and as many predicted, including Nigel Farage, the document is leading to the collapse of Theresa May’s government.

During an interview with iTV’s Piers Morgan, remain’s Alistair Campell and leave’s Nigel Farage, were calling May’s Brexit deal a complete disaster.

Via iTV

Alastair Campbell: “This doesn’t do remotely what was offered…what is the point”

“Parliament is at an impasse”

“We have to go back to the people” …”remain has to be on the ballot paper”

Nigel Farage:

“This is the worst deal in history. We are giving away in excess of 40B pounds in return for precisely nothing. Trapped still inside the European Union’s rulebook.

“Nothing has been achieved.”

“In any negotiation in life…the other side need to know that you are serious about walking away.”

“What monsieur Barnier knew from day one, is that at no point did Theresa May intend to walk away.”

“Fundamental matter of trust to the electors of our country and those who govern us.”

The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris discuss Theresa May’s Brexit Withdrawal Agreement, and why the deal is a full on victory for the European Union and a document of subjugation for the United Kingdom.

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Coming in at 585 pages, the draft agreement will be closely scrutinized over the coming days but here are some of the highlights as outlined by Zerohedge

  • UK and EU to use the best endeavours to supersede Ireland protocol by 2020
  • UK can request extension of the transition period any time before July 1st, 2020
  • EU, UK See Level-Playing Field Measures in Future Relationship
  • Transition period may be extended once up to date yet to be specified in the text
  • EU and UK shall establish single customs territory and Northern Ireland is in same customs territory as Great Britain

The future relationship document is less than seven pages long. It says the U.K. and EU are seeking a free-trade area with cooperation on customs and rules: “Comprehensive arrangements creating a free trade area combining deep regulatory and customs cooperation, underpinned by provisions ensuring a level playing field for open and fair competition.”

The wording might raise concerns among Brexiters who don’t want regulatory cooperation and the measures on fair competition could amount to shackling the U.K. to EU rules.

As Bloomberg’s Emma Ross-Thomas writes, “There’s a clear sense in the documents that we’re heading for a customs union in all but name. Firstly via the Irish backstop, and then via the future relationship.”

Separately, a government summary of the draft agreement suggests role for parliament in deciding whether to extend the transition or to move in to the backstop.

But perhaps most importantly, regarding the controversial issue of the Irish border, the future relationship document says both sides aim to replace the so-called backstop – the thorniest issue in the negotiations – with a “subsequent agreement that establishes alternative arrangements for ensuring the absence of a hard border on the island of Ireland on a permanent footing.”

On this topic, recall that the U.K.’s fear was of being locked into the backstop arrangement indefinitely in the absence of a broader trade deal. The draft agreement includes a review process to try to give reassurance that the backstop would never be needed. Basically, the U.K. could choose to seek an extension to the transition period – where rules stay the same as they are currently – or opt to trigger the backstop conditions. In fact, as Bloomberg notes, the word “backstop,” which has been a sticking point over the Irish border for weeks, is mentioned only once in the text.

As Bloomberg further adds, the withdrawal agreement makes clear that the U.K. will remain in a single customs area with the EU until there’s a solution reached on the Irish border. It’s what Brexiteers hate, because it makes it more difficult for the U.K. to sign its own free-trade deals, which they regard as a key prize of Brexit.

Predictably, EU Commission President Juncker said decisive progress has been made in negotiations.

Meanwhile, as analysts comb over the documents, Jacob Rees-Mogg, chairman of the European Research Group, has already written to Conservative lawmakers urging them to vote against the deal. He says:

  • May is handing over money for “little or nothing in return”
  • The agreement treats Northern Ireland differently from the rest of the U.K.
  • It will “lock” the U.K. into a customs union with the EU
  • It breaks the Tory election manifesto of 2017

The full document…

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4 resignations and counting: May’s government ‘falling apart before our eyes’ over Brexit deal

The beginning of the end for Theresa May’s government.

The Duran

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Via RT


Four high profile resignations have followed on the heels of Theresa May’s announcement that her cabinet has settled on a Brexit deal, with Labour claiming that the Conservative government is at risk of completely dissolving.

Shailesh Vara, the Minister of State at the Northern Ireland Office was the first top official to resign after the prime minister announced that her cabinet had reached a draft EU withdrawal agreement.

An hour after his announcement, Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab – the man charged with negotiating and finalizing the deal – said he was stepping down, stating that the Brexit deal in its current form suffers from deep flaws. Esther McVey, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, submitted her letter of resignation shortly afterwards. More resignations have followed.

Labour’s shadow Cabinet Office minister, Jon Trickett, predicted that this is the beginning of the end for May’s government.

The government is falling apart before our eyes as for a second time the Brexit secretary has refused to back the prime minister’s Brexit plan. This so-called deal has unraveled before our eyes

Shailesh Vara: UK to be stuck in ‘a half-way house with no time limit’

Kicking off Thursday’s string of resignations, Vara didn’t mince words when describing his reservations about the cabinet-stamped Brexit deal.

Theresa May’s EU withdrawal agreement leaves the UK in a “halfway house with no time limit on when we will finally become a sovereign nation,” his letter of resignation states. Vara went on to warn that the draft agreement leaves a number of critical issues undecided, predicting that it “will take years to conclude” a trade deal with the bloc.

“We will be locked in a customs arrangement indefinitely, bound by rules determined by the EU over which we have no say,” he added.

Dominic Raab: Deal can’t be ‘reconciled’ with promises made to public

Announcing his resignation on Thursday morning, Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab tweeted: “I cannot in good conscience support the terms proposed for our deal with the EU.”

Raab claimed that the deal in its current form gives the EU veto power over the UK’s ability to annul the deal.

No democratic nation has ever signed up to be bound by such an extensive regime.

Former Conservative Party leader Iain Duncan Smith said that Raab’s resignation as Brexit secretary is “devastating” for May.

“It sounds like he has been ignored,” he told the BBC.

Raab’s departure will undoubtedly encourage other Brexit supporters to question the deal, political commentators have observed.

Esther McVey: Deal ‘does not honor’ Brexit referendum

Work and Pensions Secretary Esther McVey didn’t hold back when issuing her own letter of resignation. According to McVey, the deal “does not honour” the result of the Brexit referendum, in which a majority of Brits voted to leave the European Union.

Suella Braverman: ‘Unable to sincerely support’ deal

Suella Braverman, a junior minister in Britain’s Brexit ministry, issued her resignation on Thursday, saying that she couldn’t stomach the deal.

“I now find myself unable to sincerely support the deal agreed yesterday by cabinet,” she said in a letter posted on Twitter.

Suella Braverman, MP Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the Department for Exiting the EU © Global Look Press / Joel Goodman
Braverman said that the deal is not what the British people voted for, and threatened to tear the country apart.

“It prevents an unequivocal exit from a customs union with the EU,” she said.

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