Archive | September 2, 2014

Saudi Prepares to Remove Prophet’s Tomb*

Saudi Prepares to Remove Prophet’s Tomb*

One of Islam’s most revered holy sites – the tomb of the Prophet Mohamed – could be destroyed and his body removed to an anonymous grave under plans which threaten to spark discord across the Muslim world.

The controversial proposals are part of a consultation document by a leading Saudi academic which has been circulated among the supervisors of al-Masjid al-Nabawi mosque in Medina, where the remains of the Prophet are housed under the Green Dome, visited by millions of pilgrims and venerated as Islam’s second-holiest site. The formal custodian of the mosque is Saudi Arabia’s ageing monarch King Abdullah.

The plans brought to light by another Saudi academic who has exposed and criticised the destruction of holy places and artefacts in Mecca – the holiest site in the Muslim world – call for the destruction of chambers around the Prophet’s grave which are particularly venerated by Shi’ah Muslims.

The 61-page document also calls for the removal of Mohamed’s remains to the nearby al-Baqi cemetery, where they would be interred anonymously.

There is no suggestion that any decision has been taken to act upon the plans. The Saudi government has in the past insisted that it treats any changes to Islam’s holiest sites with “the utmost seriousness”.

But such is the importance of the mosque to both Sunni and Shi’ah Muslims that Dr Irfan al-Alawi warned that any attempt to carry out the work could spark unrest. It also runs the risk of inflaming sectarian tensions between the two branches of Islam, already running perilously high due to the conflicts in Syria and Iraq.

Hardline Saudi clerics have long preached that the country’s strict Wahhabi interpretation of Islam – an offshoot of the Sunni tradition – prohibits the worship of any object or “saint”, a practice considered “shirq” or idolatrous.

Dr Alawi, director of the Islamic Heritage Research Foundation, told The Independent:

“People visit the chambers, which are the rooms where the Prophet’s family lived, and turn towards the burial chamber to pray.

“Now they want to prevent pilgrims from attending and venerating the tomb because they believe this is shirq, or idolatry. But the only way they can stop people visiting the Prophet is to get him out and into the cemetery.”

For centuries Muslim pilgrims have made their way to Mecca in order to visit the Ka’aba – a black granite cubed building said to be built by Abraham, around which al-Masjid al-Haram, or the Grand Mosque, is built, and towards which every Muslim faces when they pray.

This pilgrimage, or hajj, is a religious duty that has to be carried out at least once in a lifetime.

Many go on to make their way to the nearby city of Medina to pay their respects at the Prophet’s tomb.

Al-Nabawi mosque around the tomb has been expanded by generations of Arabian rulers, particularly the Ottomans. It includes hand-painted calligraphy documenting details of the Prophet’s life and his family. Dr Alawi said the plans also call for these to be destroyed as well as the Green Dome which covers the Prophet’s tomb.

The Prophet is venerated by both branches of Islam, Sunni and Shia. The strict Wahhabi sect is a branch of the Sunni faith, however, and removing the Prophet could further inflame tensions between the two groups .

The current crisis in Iraq has been blamed on the Shi’ah former Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s sectarianism, which alienated the Sunni, leading to the uprising. ISIS, also known as Islamic State, which holds swathes of Iraq and Syria, and which murdered the American journalist James Foley, is a Sunni organisation.

Mainstream Sunni Muslims would be just as aghast at any desecration of the tomb as the Shia, Dr Alawi said.

The Independent has previously revealed how the multibillion-pound expansion of the Grand Mosque has, according to the Washington-based Gulf Institute, led to the destruction of up to 95 per cent of Mecca’s millennium-old buildings. They have been replaced with luxury hotels, apartments and  shopping malls.

King Abdullah has appointed the prominent Wahhabi cleric and imam of the Grand Mosque, Abdul Rahman al-Sudais, to oversee the expansion project – necessary to cope with the huge number of pilgrims who now visit each year.

Dr Alawi says the consultation document for the al-Nabawi mosque in Medina, by the leading Saudi academic Dr Ali bin Abdulaziz al-Shabal of Imam Muhammad ibn Saud Islamic University in Riyadh, has been circulated to the Committee of the Presidency of the Two Mosques.

Several pages of the consultation document have just been published in the presidency’s journal. They call for the destruction of the rooms surrounding the tomb – used by the Prophet’s wives and daughters, and venerated by the Shi’ah because of their association with his youngest daughter, Fatima.

The document also calls for the Green Dome, which covers the tomb and these living quarters, to be removed, and the ultimate removal of the Prophet’s body to a nearby cemetery.

The al-Baqi cemetery already contains the bodies of many of the Prophet’s family, including his father who was removed there in the 1970s, Dr Alawi said. In 1924 all the grave markers were removed, so pilgrims would not know who was buried there, and so be unable to pray to them.

“The Prophet would be anonymous,” Dr  Alawi added.

“Everything around the Prophet’s mosque has already been destroyed. It is surrounded by bulldozers. Once they’ve removed everything they can move towards the mosque. The imam is likely to say there is a need to expand the mosque and do it that way, while the world’s eyes are on Iraq and Syria. The Prophet Mohamed’s grave is venerated by the mainstream Sunni, who would never do it. It is just as important for the Shi’ah too, who venerate the Prophet’s daughter, Fatima.

“I’m sure there will be shock across the Muslim world at these revelations. It will cause outrage.”

The Independent was unable to contact the Saudi Arabian embassy, but it said in a statement last year:

“The development of the Holy Mosque of Makkah al-Mukarramah [Mecca] is an extremely important subject and one which the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, in its capacity as custodian of the two holy mosques, takes with the utmost seriousness. This role is at the heart of the principles upon which Saudi Arabia is founded.”


Related Topics:

Bulldozing Islamic Heritage

Hajj Permit Required to Enter Makkah*

Canadians to Upgrade Mecca*

ISIS Demolish the Nabi Younes (Prophet Jonah) Mosque*

Saudi Prince Joins the Opposition

Unholy Trinity United States-Israel- Saudi Arabia Sowing Discord amongst Muslims*

Saudi Arabia Providing anti-Tank Missiles to Rebels in Syria*

Wahhabism as a Tool of Colonialism*

Takfirism a Saudi and CIA Creation*

Elimination by Assimilation: China Offers Cash for Interracial Marriages with Uyghurs*

Elimination by Assimilation: China Offers Cash for Interracial Marriages with Uyghurs*

There is not peculiar to the Chinese government. Australia is a clear example of how the British elite used the British lower classes for the same purpose with the indigenous peoples of Australia…

Chinese authorities in the restive western region of Xinjiang have begun offering large cash incentives for interracial marriages in the latest attempt to quell growing unrest among the mainly Muslim Uighur ethnic group that inhabit the region.

The policy, celebrated by local Communist party officials as advancing the “great cause of assimilation” and “ethnic unity”, offers couples entering into mixed marriages an annual bonus of Rmb10,000 ($1,600), equivalent to 135 per cent of average annual rural incomes.

Uyghurs, Mongolians and other ethnic minorities who marry people from the dominant Han race, which makes up more than 90 per cent of China’s 1.36bn population, will also be eligible for a broad range of medical, schooling and housing benefits.

The policy has been introduced in sparsely populated Cherchen County in south Xinjiang as part of the government’s response to a wave of recent bombings and terrorist attacks in the region, according to local officials and an online announcement from the local government.

“Cherchen County has a lot of minorities with their own religious beliefs but through Han-minority mixed marriages we can strengthen ethnic unity,” an official from the Cherchen County propaganda office told the Financial Times.

In the wake of several terrorist attacks across China, most of them in Xinjiang itself, Beijing has vowed to crush Uyghurs “separatists” and “religious extremists”.

In the latest serious incident, 96 people were killed in riots near Kashgar in late July after a “gang” of Uighurs attacked a police station and government offices, according to Chinese state media.

Security services in the region have stepped up arrests and executions of alleged terrorists in recent months, but some local governments have also experimented with economic incentives to address simmering resentment.

“The central government has recently been calling for greater inter-ethnic ‘mingling’ in Xinjiang and these latest policies [in Cherchen] appear to be a response to that,” said James Leibold, an expert on China’s ethnic policy at Australia’s La Trobe University.

Similar cash incentives have been offered in Tibetan regions, where resentment towards heavy handed Chinese rule has also been rising.

The government has long been concerned about the low rate of interracial marriage between Uyghurs and Han, which it sees as an obstacle to solidifying Chinese rule in the vast border territory.

In 2000, the last year the government published official figures, only 1.05% of Uyghurs lived in mixed-race families, compared with 7.71% for Tibetans and a national average of 3.2 %, according to Mr Leibold.

Under the new policy in Cherchen, couples living in mixed marriages will be eligible for up to Rmb20,000 in medical expenses paid by the state and their children will get up to Rmb5,000 a year once they are accepted to study at a Chinese school.

That is on top of the Rmb10,000 annual bonus they can receive for up to five years.

The average annual income for rural residents in Xinjiang in 2013 was just Rmb7,394.


Related Topics:

China punishes Uyghur’s for Studying their Religion Outside State Control*

China Criminalizes 25 more Uyghurs*

Uyghur Muslims Punished for Fasting in Holy Month*

The Neo-Colonial Context of Canada’s Multiculturalism*

Haiti Puppet Government Failed to Silence Aristide’s Influence*

Haiti Puppet Governments’ Corruption Charges against Aristide Unfounded*

Aristide who was first kidnapped by U.S. Special Forces as president, and prevented from returning for 7 years lived in exile in South Africa. In current times his return was blocked by the international elite members, Obama and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon who had asked South African President Jacob Zuma, but South African Foreign Minister, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane his wife Mildred and daughters Michaela and Christine, aged 12 and 14 respectively went to see Aristide off on Thursday March 17th 2011.

By Joe Emersberger

Former Haitian President Jean Bertrand Aristide is once again being hounded with bogus corruption allegations by the government of Michel Martelly – a government that owes its existence to US bullying. I don’t dismiss corruption allegations against any politician lightly – even one the USA despises. Reasonable, but uniformed, readers may ask why we can be sure the allegations against Aristide are baseless.

If the facts were widely known about what the US has done in Haiti in recent years, nobody would ask that question. They’d be too busy working for the prosecution of US officials for crimes perpetrated in Haiti. In fact, Canadian, French and United Nations officials would also be struggling to stay out of jail for aiding and abetting those crimes as I’ve mentioned before.

On February 29, 2004, USA perpetrated a coup against Haiti’s democratically elected government which was headed by Aristide. That’s worth repeating. The USA directly perpetrated the coup. It did not simply provide decisive support for a coup carried out by local allies as it has done so many times in Latin America.  In this case, US troops physically removed Aristide from Haiti in the middle of the night and flew him off to the Central African Republic. Canadian troops assisted the US by securing the airport in Port-Au-Prince. The US government claims that Aristide begged rescue from a small group of “rebels” even though his own security team could have led him to safety, if that was his priority, in various countries within the Caribbean.  The US and its allies, after its alleged “rescue” of Aristide, took over Haiti and promptly set up a dictatorship under Gerard Latortue. The rebels – essentially led by the death squad leader Jodel Chamblain – were immediately made completely subordinate to the US and its allies. Rebels who objected too strongly to their subordinate role were simply told to get lost and, in a few very isolated cases, hunted down. Hundreds of the more obedient “rebels” were incorporated into a revamped Haitian police force under the close direction of US and UN officials. Yes, criminals were made police under the direction of even bigger criminals in Washington. That’s how our upside down world functions.

On Thursday, Aristide boarded a plane in South Africa bound for Port-au-Prince. Joining him on the flight is his wife, Mildred Aristide, attorney Ira Kurzban and actor Danny Glover.It should be stressed that even those who insist that US troops “rescued” (as opposed to “kidnapped”) Aristide have absolutely no basis for denying that the USA perpetrated a coup. The US and its allies used the “rebels” as a pretext to forcibly restore its traditional far right allies to dominance in Haiti. Aside from the widely ignored murder of thousands of Aristde’s supporters that took place under Gerard Latortue’s dictatorship, Aristide’s political party (Fanmi Lavalas) has also been banned from participating in elections held since the coup. Latortue stacked the judiciary with people keen to facilitate the persecution of Aristide’s supporters – people with the same mentality as the disbarred judge who recently issued the arrest warrant against Aristide for allegedly ignoring a summons.  Yes, a disbarred judge issued the arrest warrant.  That’s perfectly consistent with what the USA has established in Haiti.

Part of the US “rescue” of Aristide in 2004 supposedly included a promise to protect his property in Haiti. Colin Powell – the man tasked with lying extravagantly to the world about Iraqi WMD – claimed that the US had made this promise to Aristide. Immediately after the “rescue”, Aristide’s house was ransacked for days thereby exposing Powell, yet again, as a liar, but there is another consideration that is relevant to the allegations against Aristide. Since 2004, the USA and its allies had every opportunity and incentive to build a devastating case against Aristide for corruption or anything else they wanted. They had access to any number of personal and official documents combined with the ability to lean heavily (bribe and coerce that is) on countless former Aristide associates. The Latortue dictatorship spent a lot of time and money in US courts, and predictably received a great deal of help from US Treasury officials trying to build some kind of case. It speaks volumes that all they’ve been able to charge Aristide with after all these years is what this disbarred judge came up with – deliberately ignoring a summons.

In 2005, Ira Kurzban, Aristides’s attorney in the USA pointed out:

“If you recall, a lot of the venom was spewed against President Aristide both before and following the coup – wild accusations that he had $280 million in a bank account somewhere in Europe and so forth. To my understanding, the United States sent seven people from the Treasury Department immediately after the coup to investigate financial wrongdoing, and a number of Haitians have been working day and night to find the money that President supposedly took. But, it’s now obvious, there is none. 

There are no Swiss bank accounts, no yachts, no Trump Tower apartments, all of which there were with Duvalier. There are none of the things that one classically identifies with the claim that a president has abused his authority and stolen money for his own benefit.”

Lack of evidence never stopped the US from aggressively peddling its claims that Iraqi WMD existed.  The case for war depended on it. Evidence and logic were therefore dismissed by both the US government and the corporate media.  Similarly in Haiti, the ongoing crushing of democracy requires the relentless demonization of the popular president the US government deposed.


Related Topics:

Controlling Haiti

Controling Haiti’s Gold

100,000 Haitians Say: End Occupation, Remove Puppet Government*

Haiti: The Divine Right to Enslave Others*

Haitians Sue UN over Cholera Epidemic*

Your Advanced Intelligence…

Iraq Retakes More Towns from ISIL*

Iraq Retakes More Towns from ISIL*

By Jane Arraf

Iraqi Kurdish forces and Shi’ah armed volunteers have retaken more northern towns from the Islamic State group, killing at least two of its senior fighters, sources have told Al Jazeera.

A day after breaking the siege in the town of Amerli north of Baghdad, government forces retook the town of Sulaiman Bek on Monday, removing another key stronghold of the Islamic State group.

Iraqi officials said they killed Mussab Mamoud, the town’s ISIL head, and Mazen Zaki, the military wing commander, along with more than 20 other Sunni rebel fighters.

Iraqi security officials said eight of the fighters were Chechen. They also said the fighters include dozens of nationalities, including experienced Chechen snipers.

Government forces are still trying to clear the town of explosives left by the armed group which was previously known as ISIL.

The small farming town became an ISIL stronghold after it was seized last year by Jaish al-Tariqiyah al-Naqshabandiyah – Baath party loyalists led by Saddam Hussein’s former deputy Izzat Ibrahim al-Duri.

Iraqi security forces took it back and occupied the town, only to lose it in the sweep by Islamic State fighters through vast areas of Iraq’s north and west.

“The town of Suleiman Bek has been liberated from ISIL by the Iraqi Army and Peshmerga as well as local volunteers including the Peace Brigade, Badr Corps and Asaib Ahel-al-Haq,” General Abdul Amir al-Zaidi, head of the Dijala Operations commander told Al Jazeera.

The Peace Brigade is an offshoot of Shi’ah cleric Muqtada al-Sadr’s former armed group the Mehdi Army, while Asaib Ahel-al-Haq is an Iranian-backed group that has now entered Iraq’s political mainstream.

Security sources said fighting was also ongoing to retake the remaining villages still held by Islamic State fighters.

Sulaiman Bek is located near Amerli, where thousands of mainly Shi’ah Turkmen civilians were trapped by the ISIL siege until Iraqi forces broke through on Sunday.

With the latest government advance, half of the main road between the northern city of Kirkuk and Baghdad is now under the control of the Iraqi army, from the southern side of Amerli to the north of Baghdad. The other half linking the road between Tuz Kharmatu to Sulaiman Bek is still contested.

Offensive against ISIL

The Amerli operation on Sunday was the government’s biggest offensive success since ISIL captured a huge chunk of northern and north-central Iraq in June.

The southern entry point of the town is now cleared by the Iraqi forces, and other local volunteers and government recruits backed by the Shi’ah armed groups Peace Brigades and Badr Corps.

These combined forces are trying on Monday to break into the other northern and western villages surrounding Amerli to push back ISIL.

On the west entry point of the town 100km from Tikrit City, which has a number of villages controlled and affiliated to Islamic State, the clashes is also continuing between the Sunni rebel group and the local volunteers from within the town itself backed by Iraqi forces.

The breakthrough against the ISIL was aided by expanded US air strikes, which destroyed ISIL armed vehicles near Amerli as well as near Mosul Dam further north.

On Saturday, the US military attacked ISIL positions and along with the French and Australians airdropped humanitarian aid to the trapped civilians, mostly Shi’ah Turkmen minority. The US Central Command said the aid drop was accompanied by British fighter jets.


Related Topics:

Iraq Forces Converge on Amreli to Break ISIL Siege*

Hundreds Gather against Militarism, at the NATO’ Summit*

Sunni Clerics Declare Collaborating with ISIL Prohibited under Shari’ah*

A Wounded ISIL Fighter Meets his Benefactor, Netanyahu in Golan Heights*

Iraqi Play Challenges the Assumed Authority of ISIL*

ISIL: The U.S. has No Idea How to Proceed*

Iraqi Forces Drive ISIL from Three Anbar Cities*

U.S. Changes its Mind on Seizing Kurdish Iraqi Crude Oil*

Iraqi and Kurdish Forces Retrieve Mosul Dam from ISIL*

Syrian Army Makes Major Advances on ISIL*

Open Letter from Former NSA Director and Veterans on NATO’s Ukraine Pretext for WWIII*

Open Letter from Former NSA Director and Veterans on NATO’s Ukraine Pretext for WWIII*

Alarmed at the anti-Russian hysteria sweeping Washington, and the specter of a new Cold War, U.S. intelligence veterans one of whom is none other than William Binney, the former senior NSA crypto-mathematician who back in March 2012 blew the whistle on the NSA’s spying programs more than a year before Edward Snowden, took the unusual step of sending the following memo dated August 30 to German Chancellor Merkel challenging the reliability of Ukrainian and U.S. media claims about a Russian “invasion.”

MEMORANDUM FOR: Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany
FROM: Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS)
SUBJECT: Ukraine and NATO

We the undersigned are longtime veterans of U.S. intelligence. We take the unusual step of writing this open letter to you to ensure that you have an opportunity to be briefed on our views prior to the NATO summit on September 4-5.

You need to know, for example, that accusations of a major Russian “invasion” of Ukraine appear not to be supported by reliable intelligence. Rather, the “intelligence” seems to be of the same dubious, politically “fixed” kind used 12 years ago to “justify” the U.S.-led attack on Iraq. We saw no credible evidence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq then; we see no credible evidence of a Russian invasion now. Twelve years ago, former Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, mindful of the flimsiness of the evidence on Iraqi WMD, refused to join in the attack on Iraq. In our view, you should be appropriately suspicions of charges made by the US State Department and NATO officials alleging a Russian invasion of Ukraine.

President Barack Obama tried yesterday to cool the rhetoric of his own senior diplomats and the corporate media, when he publicly described recent activity in the Ukraine, as “a continuation of what’s been taking place for months now … it’s not really a shift.”

Obama, however, has only tenuous control over the policymakers in his administration – who, sadly, lack much sense of history, know little of war, and substitute anti-Russian invective for a policy. One year ago, hawkish State Department officials and their friends in the media very nearly got Mr. Obama to launch a major attack on Syria based, once again, on “intelligence” that was dubious, at best.

Largely because of the growing prominence of, and apparent reliance on, intelligence we believe to be spurious, we think the possibility of hostilities escalating beyond the borders of Ukraine has increased significantly over the past several days. More important, we believe that this likelihood can be avoided, depending on the degree of judicious skepticism you and other European leaders bring to the NATO summit next week.

Experience with Untruth

Hopefully, your advisers have reminded you of NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen’s checkered record for credibility. It appears to us that Rasmussen’s speeches continue to be drafted by Washington. This was abundantly clear on the day before the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq when, as Danish Prime Minister, he told his Parliament: “Iraq has weapons of mass destruction. This is not something we just believe. We know.”

Photos can be worth a thousand words; they can also deceive. We have considerable experience collecting, analyzing, and reporting on all kinds of satellite and other imagery, as well as other kinds of intelligence. Suffice it to say that the images released by NATO on August 28 provide a very flimsy basis on which to charge Russia with invading Ukraine. Sadly, they bear a strong resemblance to the images shown by Colin Powell at the UN on February 5, 2003 that, likewise, proved nothing.

That same day, we warned President Bush that our former colleague analysts were “increasingly distressed at the politicization of intelligence” and told him flatly, “Powell’s presentation does not come close” to justifying war. We urged Mr. Bush to “widen the discussion … beyond the circle of those advisers clearly bent on a war for which we see no compelling reason and from which we believe the unintended consequences are likely to be catastrophic.”

Consider Iraq today. Worse than catastrophic. Although President Vladimir Putin has until now showed considerable reserve on the conflict in the Ukraine, it behooves us to remember that Russia, too, can “shock and awe.” In our view, if there is the slightest chance of that kind of thing eventually happening to Europe because of Ukraine, sober-minded leaders need to think this through very carefully.

If the photos that NATO and the US have released represent the best available “proof” of an invasion from Russia, our suspicions increase that a major effort is under way to fortify arguments for the NATO summit to approve actions that Russia is sure to regard as provocative. Caveat emptor is an expression with which you are no doubt familiar. Suffice it to add that one should be very cautious regarding what Mr. Rasmussen, or even Secretary of State John Kerry, are peddling.

We trust that your advisers have kept you informed regarding the crisis in Ukraine from the beginning of 2014, and how the possibility that Ukraine would become a member of NATO is anathema to the Kremlin. According to a February 1, 2008 cable (published by WikiLeaks) from the US embassy in Moscow to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, US Ambassador William Burns was called in by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, who explained Russia’s strong opposition to NATO membership for Ukraine.

Lavrov warned pointedly of “fears that the issue could potentially split the country in two, leading to violence or even, some claim, civil war, which would force Russia to decide whether to intervene.” Burns gave his cable the unusual title, “NYET MEANS NYET: RUSSIA’S NATO ENLARGEMENT REDLINES,” and sent it off to Washington with IMMEDIATE precedence. Two months later, at their summit in Bucharest NATO leaders issued a formal declaration that “Georgia and Ukraine will be in NATO.”

Just yesterday, Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk used his Facebook page to claim that, with the approval of Parliament that he has requested, the path to NATO membership is open. Yatsenyuk, of course, was Washington’s favorite pick to become prime minister after the February 22 coup d’etat in Kiev. “Yats is the guy,” said Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland a few weeks before the coup, in an intercepted telephone conversation with US Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt. You may recall that this is the same conversation in which Nuland said, “Fuck the EU.”

Timing of the Russian “Invasion”

The conventional wisdom promoted by Kiev just a few weeks ago was that Ukrainian forces had the upper hand in fighting the anti-coup federalists in southeastern Ukraine, in what was largely portrayed as a mop-up operation. But that picture of the offensive originated almost solely from official government sources in Kiev. There were very few reports coming from the ground in southeastern Ukraine. There was one, however, quoting Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, that raised doubt about the reliability of the government’s portrayal.

According to the “press service of the President of Ukraine” on August 18, Poroshenko called for a “regrouping of Ukrainian military units involved in the operation of power in the East of the country. … Today we need to do the rearrangement of forces that will defend our territory and continued army offensives,” said Poroshenko, adding, “we need to consider a new military operation in the new circumstances.”

If the “new circumstances” meant successful advances by Ukrainian government forces, why would it be necessary to “regroup,” to “rearrange” the forces? At about this time, sources on the ground began to report a string of successful attacks by the anti-coup federalists against government forces. According to these sources, it was the government army that was starting to take heavy casualties and lose ground, largely because of ineptitude and poor leadership.

Ten days later, as they became encircled and/or retreated, a ready-made excuse for this was to be found in the “Russian invasion.” That is precisely when the fuzzy photos were released by NATO and reporters like the New York Times’ Michael Gordon were set loose to spread the word that “the Russians are coming.” (Michael Gordon was one of the most egregious propagandists promoting the war on Iraq.)

No Invasion – But Plenty Other Russian Support

The anti-coup federalists in southeastern Ukraine enjoy considerable local support, partly as a result of government artillery strikes on major population centers. And we believe that Russian support probably has been pouring across the border and includes, significantly, excellent battlefield intelligence. But it is far from clear that this support includes tanks and artillery at this point – mostly because the federalists have been better led and surprisingly successful in pinning down government forces.

At the same time, we have little doubt that, if and when the federalists need them, the Russian tanks will come.

This is precisely why the situation demands a concerted effort for a ceasefire, which you know Kiev has so far been delaying. What is to be done at this point? In our view, Poroshenko and Yatsenyuk need to be told flat-out that membership in NATO is not in the cards – and that NATO has no intention of waging a proxy war with Russia – and especially not in support of the ragtag army of Ukraine. Other members of NATO need to be told the same thing.

For the Steering Group, Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity

  •     William Binney, former Technical Director, World Geopolitical & Military Analysis, NSA; co-founder, SIGINT Automation Research Center (ret.)
  •     David MacMichael, National Intelligence Council (ret.)
  •     Ray McGovern, former US Army infantry/intelligence officer & CIA analyst (ret.)
  •     Elizabeth Murray, Deputy National Intelligence Officer for Middle East (ret.)
  •     Todd E. Pierce, MAJ, US Army Judge Advocate (Ret.)
  •     Coleen Rowley, Division Counsel & Special Agent, FBI (ret.)
  •     Ann Wright, Col., US Army (ret.); Foreign Service Officer (resigned)


Related Topics:

Hundreds Gather against Militarism, at the NATO’ Summit*

Corporate Global Governance Control of Ukraine*

Guilty as Charged: Smuggling Real Humanitarian Aid into the Ukraine*

The Khazars and Zionists are One: The Re-invasion of the Ukraine*