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Devil’s deal: Did Turkey outmaneuver Russia with Idlib Agreement? (Video)

The Duran – News in Review – Episode 118.

Alex Christoforou

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Syrian jihadist groups in Idlib are rejecting the Turkish-Russian Idlib deal.

The jihadist faction, Huras al-Din has already rejected the agreement that requires radical terrorist insurgents in Idlib to withdraw from a demilitarized zone. Huras al-Din urged other jihadist factions to launch new military operations.

Huras al-Din is not the main Islamist militant group in Idlib, but its statement points to objections that may complicate the implementation of the agreement signed last week by Russia and Turkey.

The most powerful jihadist terrorist group in the northwest, Tahrir al-Sham (aka Al Nusra, aka Al Qaeda), has yet to declare its stance on the Idlib deal, under which terrorist jihadist groups must vacate the demilitarized zone by October 15th.

Tahrir al-Sham said on Monday that it will announce its position on the Idlib agreement in the next few days, with its acceptance or rejection vital to the success of efforts to contain the war.

According to Reuters, Tahrir al-Sham’s stance will be critical to last week’s deal which has, for now, averted a full-scale Syrian government offensive in Idlib, which along with adjacent areas of the northwest is the rebels’ last major foothold.

“An official statement will be issued soon,” after the group held internal consultation on the deal, said Emad al-Din, media officer for Tahrir al-Sham. He clarified that “soon” meant within a few days.

Tahrir al-Sham was formed in early 2017 as an alliance of jihadist factions including the former al Qaeda affiliate the Nusra Front and it has a large armed presence throughout Idlib, including along the Turkish border.

A smaller, harder line jihadist faction in Idlib, Huras al-Din, has rejected the agreement and urged rebels to launch new military operations.

An alliance of Turkey-allied rebel groups, the National Front for Liberation, has declared its “complete cooperation” with the Turkish effort, but has also ruled out disarming or yielding territory.

The demilitarized zone agreed by Turkey and Russia will be 15 to 20 km (10 to 12 miles) deep and run along the contact line between rebel and government fighters. It will be patrolled by Turkish and Russian forces.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said that all opposition heavy weapons, mortars, tanks and rocket systems are to be removed from the zone by October 10th.

Close to 3 million people live in Idlib, around half of them Syrians displaced by the war from other parts of Syria, and the United Nations has warned that an offensive would cause a humanitarian catastrophe.

The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and International Affairs and Security Analyst via Moscow, Mark Sleboda discuss the Idlib Agreement between Russia and Turkey. The deal averts a bloody conflict in Idlib for now, but in the long run, northwest Syria, under Turkish control, may end up being a permanent breeding and training ground for Al Qaeda forces…with all the blowback that entails, not only for the Syrian state, but for Europe and the United States of America.

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Via PressTV

Turkish military vehicles have entered Idlib after militants snubbed an agreement between Turkey and Russia for the creation of a buffer zone in the northwestern Syrian province, the last major militant stronghold in the Arab country.

The 30-strong convoy of vehicles entered the province “overnight,” AFP reported Monday, describing the vehicles as those used for transporting troops.

The agreement over the buffer zone was reached during a meeting between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in the Black Sea resort of Sochi.

Under the deal, a demilitarized zone of 15-20 kilometers will have to be created in Idlib along the contact line between the militants and Syrian government troops by October 15.

The deal also involves the withdrawal of “radically-minded” militants, including the al-Qaeda-linked ones, from the region.

Erdogan said both Turkey and Russia would carry out coordinated military patrols on the borders of the buffer zone in a bid to detect and prevent “provocation by third parties and violations of the agreement.”

On Sunday, however, Turkish-backed militants rejected to either lay down their arms or surrender the territory under their control.

“We will not abandon our weapons, our land or our revolution” against Syrian government forces, said the so-called National Liberation Front (NLF).

Turkey, along with Iran and Russia, has been serving as a mediator in talks between the Syrian government and the opposition since 2017, negotiating on the militants’ side.

Idlib is considered to be the last theater of war in Syria. Government troops have liberated the militant-held provinces one by one with the help of Syria’s allies Iran and Russia.

The Russo-Turkish agreement has suspended a concerted Syrian army operation against the militants in the province.

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Raymond Comeau
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Raymond Comeau

It would not be a surprise if Turkey has been in Cahoots with the USA and its coalition of useful idiots who want to kill Assad and take over Syria. I think Putin has to put up or shut up otherwise he will be dumped by his own people.

Meanwhile, Trump is keeping himself in the spotlight at the UN chairing the Security meeting.

Shahna
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Shahna

…. And I think you underestimate Mr Putin.

Cheryl Brandon
Guest
Cheryl Brandon

I hope to god you are right cause, nobody should have to live in fear for their lives/ their children’s l and their safety from Wahabhist criminals?

Ian
Guest
Ian

I don’t think so. It’s been reported that Erdogan’s body language to Trump while at the UN wasn’t friendly.

john mason
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john mason

Mistake to transfer the terrorists to Idlib, they should have gone to Raqqa and that would have saved the city from destruction; US wouldn’t fight their own proxies, stay to protect or leave and let the SAA lose on them.

Shahna
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Shahna

I don’t see why – That turkey has until the 10th October of get his militants to agree and move their backsides accordingly…… It was pretty much a done deal that they wouldn’t agree or go and I guess by then those Syrians who went south to do some housecleaning will be back and …. well – let’s just say terrorists go visit with other dinosaurs. And just look at all the interesting things Russia’s bringing in – with some electronic “dead zone” in the Med… In retaliation for Israeli negligence – or in preparation for NATO-stated intervention in an… Read more »

Cheryl Brandon
Guest
Cheryl Brandon

It should be with immediate effect!

JNDillard
Guest
JNDillard

This follows Putin’s preferred strategy of giving his opponents enough rope to hang themselves, as Israel just did. What is going to happen next, as Putin and Assad must have known, is that Erdogan will be unable to get his terrorists to evacuate. It will then become Turkey’s responsibility to evict them, meaning Turkish lives, instead of Syrian lives, in the fighting. If Erdogan does not or will not, then Syria will do so, with the full backing of Russia, whether Erdogan likes it or not. What that may mean is that Turkey will be fighting both Syria and Russia,… Read more »

Guy
Member
Guy

“According to Reuters, Tahrir al-Sham’s stance will be critical to last week’s deal”
So says Reuters .As if they are in control of what is going on in Idlib.
If the terrorists insist on staying in the demilitarized zone, they will slowly get neutralized .If it takes more time , so be it , but they will get neutralized.And the zionists and the zionist controlled governments of the NATO block can go suck wind.

Cheryl Brandon
Guest
Cheryl Brandon

President Vladimir Putin has enabled Erdagoon by giving him time; Cause, Erdagoon has no plans of kicking out the Wahabhist; He is going to change their uniform; I think SAA soldiers might have to carry out this liberation on their own . if Russia is no longer in clearing up Syria; Or give the job to Hezbollah! Their only allegiance is to JUSTICE

voza0db
Guest
voza0db

Nothing of that!

This is just Russia doing the same to Turkey as she did to IsRaEl!

We just need to wait for the Turks to mess up… and voilà!

S-300 anyone?

Shaun Ramewe
Guest
Shaun Ramewe

Never trust them two-faced terrorist-abetting resource-thieving civilian-murdering Turks – they are still sneakily in with their illegal-invader Zio-liar pro-terror political-meddling anti-democracy Yank and ISISraeli war criminals (as well as false-flagging F-UK-US). Have been all along – still are now. FSA are slyly remorphed sicko terrorist mercenaries and so are all the pretend ‘rebel’ groups.

John Nolan
Guest
John Nolan

That is a fitting acroniym, F.UK.US., which is the plan to do just that to all sane, humane people, as BIG MUMMA, who really pulls all the strings, in these power games, estabishes her end time, one world government, one world church, one world economic system and she definitely F.UK.US all who will not submit to her religious take over.

boggij
Guest
boggij

Unfortunately I think the US has reached its goal in Syria. Those S 400 are not going to change anything at all. Syria is now divided in three parts forever,and in total ruins. The Assad part, that will be poor because the US have cut all oilfields from that area. The Part controlled by the US ,that has all the oil and will be used to terrorize the Assad part,paid by the oil so it is not going to cost the US much. The third part is Idlib,that is now totally controlled by Turkey. There Erdogan can foster his terrorist… Read more »

Marcus
Guest
Marcus

I have disagreements with Mark Sleboda that Putin has been out maneuvered by Turkey. I think that Putin is in the midst of a wrestling match not a boxing match in the middle east and particularly in Syria. In a wrestling match you can be in a situation where you have a good hold and you seek to incrementally increase your hold’s position until your opponent is forced into a weaker position. At some point the opponent’s resistance collapses. You don’t need to risk a good position for some grandiose maneuver that could blow up in your face. But Mark… Read more »

AM Hants
Member
AM Hants

Nicely stated.

maja
Guest
maja

Daaaaa!

TEP
Guest
TEP

No. No they didn’t.

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European Court of Justice rules Britain free to revoke Brexit unilaterally

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled that Britain can reverse Article 50.

RT

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The UK is free to unilaterally revoke a notification to depart from the EU, the European Court has ruled. The judicial body said this could be done without changing the terms of London’s membership in the bloc.

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) opined in a document issued on Monday that Britain can reverse Article 50, which stipulates the way a member state leaves the bloc. The potentially important ruling comes only one day before the House of Commons votes on Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit deal with the EU.

“When a Member State has notified the European Council of its intention to withdraw from the European Union, as the UK has done, that Member State is free to revoke unilaterally that notification,” the court’s decision reads.

By doing so, the respective state “reflects a sovereign decision to retain its status as a Member State of the European Union.”

That said, this possibility remains in place “as long as a withdrawal agreement concluded between the EU and that Member State has not entered into force.” Another condition is: “If no such agreement has been concluded, for as long as the two-year period from the date of the notification of the intention to withdraw from the EU.”

The case was opened when a cross-party group of British politicians asked the court whether an EU member such as the UK can decide on its own to revoke the withdrawal process. It included Labour MEPs Catherine Stihler and David Martin, Scottish MPs Joanna Cherry Alyn Smith, along with Green MSPs Andy Wightman and Ross Greer.

They argued that unilateral revocation is possible and believe it could provide an opening to an alternative to Brexit, namely holding another popular vote to allow the UK to remain in the EU.

“If the UK chooses to change their minds on Brexit, then revoking Article 50 is an option and the European side should make every effort to welcome the UK back with open arms,” Smith, the SNP member, was quoted by Reuters.

However, May’s environment minister, Michael Gove, a staunch Brexit supporter, denounced the ECJ ruling, insisting the cabinet will not reverse its decision to leave. “We will leave on March 29, [2019]” he said, referring to the date set out in the UK-EU Brexit deal.

In the wake of the landmark vote on the Brexit deal, a group of senior ministers threatened to step down en masse if May does not try to negotiate a better deal in Brussels, according to the Telegraph. The ministers demanded that an alternative deal does not leave the UK trapped within the EU customs union indefinitely.

On Sunday, Will Quince resigned as parliamentary private secretary in the Ministry of Defense, saying in a Telegraph editorial that “I do not want to be explaining to my constituents why Brexit is still not over and we are still obeying EU rules in the early 2020s or beyond.”

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Seven Days of Failures for the American Empire

The American-led world system is experiencing setbacks at every turn.

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Authored by Federico Pieraccini via The Strategic Culture Foundation:


On November 25, two artillery boats of the Gyurza-M class, the Berdiansk and Nikopol, one tugboat, the Yany Kapu, as well as 24 crew members of the Ukrainian Navy, including two SBU counterintelligence officers, were detained by Russian border forces. In the incident, the Russian Federation employed Sobol-class patrol boats Izumrud and Don, as  well as two Ka-52, two Su-25 and one Su-30 aircraft.

Ukraine’s provocation follows the advice of several American think-tanks like the Atlantic Council, which have been calling for NATO involvement in the Sea of Azov for months. The area is strategically important for Moscow, which views its southern borders, above all the Sea of Azov, as a potential flash point for conflict due to the Kiev’s NATO-backed provocations.

To deter such adventurism, Moscow has deployed to the Kerch Strait and the surrounding coastal area S-400 batteries, modernized S-300s, anti-ship Bal missile systems, as well as numerous electronic-warfare systems, not to mention the Russian assets and personnel arrayed in the military districts abutting Ukraine. Such provocations, egged on by NATO and American policy makers, are meant to provide a pretext for further sanctions against Moscow and further sabotage Russia’s relations with European countries like Germany, France and Italy, as well as, quite naturally, to frustrate any personal interaction between Trump and Putin.

This last objective seems to have been achieved, with the planned meeting between Trump and Putin at the G20 in Buenos Aires being cancelled. As to the the other objectives, they seem to have failed miserably, with Berlin, Paris and Rome showing no intention of imposing additional sanctions against Russia, recognizing the Ukrainian provocation fow what it is. The intention to further isolate Moscow by the neocons, neoliberals and most of the Anglo-Saxon establishment seems to have failed, demonstrated in Buenos Aires with the meeting between the BRICS countries on the sidelines and the bilateral meetings between Putin and Merkel.

On November 30, following almost two-and-a-half months of silence, the Israeli air force bombed Syria with three waves of cruise missiles. The first and second waves were repulsed over southern Syria, and the third, composed of surface-to-surface missiles, were also downed. At the same time, a loud explosion was heard in al-Kiswah, resulting in the blackout of Israeli positions in the area.

The Israeli attack was fully repulsed, with possibly two IDF drones being downed as well. This effectiveness of Syria’s air defenses corresponds with Russia’s integration of Syria’s air defenses with its own systems, manifestly improving the Syrians’ kill ratios even without employing the new S-300 systems delivered to Damascus, let alone Russia’s own S-400s. The Pantsirs and S-200s are enough for the moment, confirming my hypothesis more than two months ago that the modernized S-300 in the hands of the Syrian army is a potentially lethal weapon even for the F-35, forbidding the Israelis from employing their F-35s.

With the failed Israeli attack testifying to effectiveness of Russian air-defense measures recently deployed to the country, even the United States is finding it difficult to operate in the country. As the Washington-based Institute for the Study of War confirms:

“Russia has finished an advanced anti-access/area denial (A2AD) network in Syria that combines its own air defense and electronic warfare systems with modernized equipment. Russia can use these capabilities to mount the long-term strategic challenge of the US and NATO in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea and the Middle East, significantly widen the geographic reach of Russia’s air defense network. Russia stands to gain a long-term strategic advantage over NATO through its new capabilities in Syria. The US and NATO must now account for the risk of a dangerous escalation in the Middle East amidst any confrontation with Russia in Eastern Europe.”

The final blow in a decidedly negative week for Washington’s ambitions came in Buenos Aires during the G20, where Xi Jinping was clearly the most awaited guest, bringing in his wake investments and opportunities for cooperation and mutual benefit, as opposed to Washington’s sanctions and tariffs for its own benefit to the detriment of others. The key event of the summit was the dinner between Xi Jinping and Donald Trump that signalled Washington’s defeat in the trade war with Beijing. Donald Trump fired the first shot of the economic war, only to succumb just 12 months later with GM closing five plants and leaving 14,000 unemployed at home as Trump tweeted about his economic achievements.

Trump was forced to suspend any new tariffs for a period of ninety days, with his Chinese counterpart intent on demonstrating how an economic war between the two greatest commercial powers had always been a pointless propagandistic exercise. Trump’s backtracking highlights Washington’s vulnerability to de-dollarization, the Achilles’ heel of US hegemony.

The American-led world system is experiencing setbacks at every turn. The struggle between the Western elites seems to be reaching a boil, with Frau Merkel ever more isolated and seeing her 14-year political dominance as chancellor petering out. Macron seems to be vying for the honor of being the most unpopular French leader in history, provoking violent protests that have lasted now for weeks, involving every sector of the population. Macron will probably be able to survive this political storm, but his political future looks dire.

The neocons/neoliberals have played one of the last cards available to them using the Ukrainian provocation, with Kiev only useful as the West’s cannon fodder against Russia. In Syria, with the conflict coming to a close and Turkey only able to look on even as it maintains a strong foothold in Idlib, Saudi Arabia, Israel and the United States are similarly unable to affect the course of the conflict. The latest Israeli aggression proved to be a humiliation for Tel Aviv and may have signalled a clear, possibly definitive warning from Moscow, Tehran and Damascus to all the forces in the region. The message seems to be that there is no longer any possibility of changing the course of the conflict in Syria, and every provocation from here on will be decisively slapped down. Idlib is going to be liberated and America’s illegal presence in the north of Syria will have to be dealt with at the right time.

Ukraine’s provocation has only strengthened Russia’s military footprint in Crimea and reinforced Russia’s sovereign control over the region. Israel’s recent failure in Syria only highlights how the various interventions of the US, the UK, France and Turkey over the years have only obliged the imposition of an almost unparalleled A2AD space that severely limits the range of options available to Damascus’s opponents.

The G20 also served to confirm Washington’s economic diminution commensurate with its military one in the face of an encroaching multipolar environment. The constant attempts to delegitimize the Trump administration by America’s elites, also declared an enemy by the European establishment, creates a picture of confusion in the West that benefits capitals like New Delhi, Moscow, Beijing and Tehran who offer instead stability, cooperation and dialogue.

As stated in previous articles, the confusion reigning amongst the Western elites only accelerates the transition to a multipolar world, progressively eroding the military and economic power of the US.

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Is Silicon Valley Morphing Into The Morality Police?

Who gets to define what words and phrases protected under the First Amendment constitute hate — a catchall word that is often ascribed to any offensive speech someone simply doesn’t like?

The Duran

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Authored by Adrian Cohen via Creators.com:


Silicon Valley used to be technology companies. But it has become the “morality police,” controlling free speech on its platforms.

What could go wrong?

In a speech Monday, Apple CEO Tim Cook said:

“Hate tries to make its headquarters in the digital world. At Apple, we believe that technology needs to have a clear point of view on this challenge. There is no time to get tied up in knots. That’s why we only have one message for those who seek to push hate, division and violence: You have no place on our platforms.”

Here’s the goliath problem:

Who gets to define what words and phrases protected under the First Amendment constitute hate — a catchall word that is often ascribed to any offensive speech someone simply doesn’t like?

Will Christians who don’t support abortion rights or having their tax dollars go toward Planned Parenthood be considered purveyors of hate for denying women the right to choose? Will millions of Americans who support legal immigration, as opposed to illegal immigration, be labeled xenophobes or racists and be banned from the digital world?

Yes and yes. How do we know? It’s already happening, as scores of conservatives nationwide are being shadow banned and/or censored on social media, YouTube, Google and beyond.

Their crime?

Running afoul of leftist Silicon Valley executives who demand conformity of thought and simply won’t tolerate any viewpoint that strays from their rigid political orthodoxy.

For context, consider that in oppressive Islamist regimes throughout the Middle East, the “morality police” take it upon themselves to judge women’s appearance, and if a woman doesn’t conform with their mandatory and highly restrictive dress code — e.g., wearing an identity-cloaking burqa — she could be publicly shamed, arrested or even stoned in the town square.

In modern-day America, powerful technology companies are actively taking the role of the de facto morality police — not when it comes to dress but when it comes to speech — affecting millions. Yes, to date, those affected are not getting stoned, but they are being blocked in the digital town square, where billions around the globe do their business, cultivate their livelihoods, connect with others and get news.

That is a powerful cudgel to levy against individuals and groups of people. Wouldn’t you say?

Right now, unelected tech billionaires living in a bubble in Palo Alto — when they’re not flying private to cushy climate summits in Davos — are deciding who gets to enjoy the freedom of speech enshrined in the U.S. Constitution and who does not based on whether they agree with people’s political views and opinions or not.

You see how dangerous this can get — real fast — as partisan liberal elites running Twitter, Facebook, Google (including YouTube), Apple and the like are now dictating to Americans what they can and cannot say online.

In communist regimes, these types of folks are known as central planners.

The election of Donald Trump was supposed to safeguard our freedoms, especially regarding speech — a foundational pillar of a democracy. It’s disappointing that hasn’t happened, as the censorship of conservative thought online has gotten so extreme and out of control many are simply logging off for good.

A failure to address this mammoth issue could cost Trump in 2020. If his supporters are blocked online — where most voters get their news — he’ll be a one-term president.

It’s time for Congress to act before the morality police use political correctness as a Trojan horse to decide our next election.

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