Tag Archive | WWIII

Trump Son-In-Law to Oversee White House Office to Revamp Govt*

Trump Son-In-Law to Oversee White House Office to Revamp Govt*

Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner | Photo: Reuters

The news comes after Ivanka Trump received her own office in the White House along with access to classified information and a government-issued phone.

U.S. President Donald Trump on Monday is set to announce his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, will take on a White House role to oversee a broad effort to overhaul the federal government, The Washington Post reported, citing statements from both men.

Kushner, who is married to Trump’s daughter Ivanka Trump and currently serves as a senior adviser, will lead the newly formed White House Office of American Innovation with an eye on leveraging business ideas and potentially privatizing some government functions, the Post said.

“The government should be run like a great American company. Our hope is that we can achieve successes and efficiencies for our customers, who are the citizens,” Kushner told the Post in an interview.

Some of the areas he will focus on are veterans’ care, opioid addiction, technology and data infrastructure, workforce training and infrastructure, according to the report.

In a statement to the Post, Trump said: “I promised the American people I would produce results, and apply my ‘ahead of schedule, under budget’ mentality to the government.”

The move comes just days after Trump suffered his first major political setback. Fellow Republicans pulled their healthcare plan after years of promising to undo former President Barack Obama’s 2010 health law.

Source*

Related Topics:

Jewish Members of Trump Administration Might Explain a Few Things*

Trump is Filling Top Pentagon and Homeland Security Positions With Defense Contractors*

Will Deep State Agenda Replace Trump with Pence*

Three Secret Trump Picks to Take Down Latin America’s Left*

Trump To Continue Bankrupting The U.S. Through Foreign Wars*

Trumps Seems to be Doing the Cabals Bidding with Goldman Sachs Heavily Entrenched in his Administration*

Blacklisted, Smeared and Silenced for Exposing NATO Destabilization of Syria*

Blacklisted, Smeared and Silenced for Exposing NATO Destabilization of Syria*

By Mnar Muhawesh

Though it’s been nearly six years, the subject of the Syrian conflict remains as contentious as ever. While those who characterize themselves as pro-regime change have monopolized the wider conversation on Syria, even the most tame opposition against foreign intervention, or the CIA-backed rebels—who now come in varying flavors of extremism—continues to be taboo.

Those who refuse to support U.S. military intervention in Syria and the CIA backed regime change operation there that has been well documented for over 25 years — are branded “Assadists” — and if you’re a writer or commentator?

Well, that gets you and your work blacklisted from publications and, in the case of journalists like myself and others who make up a long list of anti-interventionists far too long to mention here, even gets your speaking engagements shut down and kicked off of blogs, regardless of what topic they’re on.

It seems that opposing what clearly amounts to a NATO-imposed regime change operation in Syria in order to create the next Afghanistan in the Middle East and ultimately weaken Russia and Iran gets you characterized as a supporter of genocide.

But this is not a new phenomenon — we’ve been here before as recently as Libya and Iraq.

During the pro-war campaign against Libya, we were told, just as we were during previous conflicts, that military intervention was necessary in order to protect civilians from a madman.

The same loudmouthed pundits who led us down the bloody path of war have since been eerily silent in the aftermath — where Libya is now being overrun by groups like ISIS and the country is being described as a failed state.

In Iraq, we saw an energized anti-war movement smeared as being pro-Saddam, and now, despite what we’ve learned about both conflicts, history seems to be repeating itself. Many are now suffering a kind of collective amnesia over how war is peddled to the public.

Today we’re joined by Rania Khalek, an independent journalist who has become the latest victim  of an organized smearing and blacklisting campaign for her recent reporting on Syria. The organized campaign against her became so aggressive that several of her talks on apartheid in Israel were canceled after student groups were pressured to blacklist her events by pro-Syrian rebel activists who support US intervention and regime change.

The blacklisting of Rania Khalek garnered the attention of many notable scholars, activists and journalists including Noam Chomsky, John Pilger and Glenn Greenwald among others who signed a petition calling for an end to censorship and warning that there needs to be more open dialogue on Syria rather than silencing journalists.

Source*

Related Topics:

Syrian Army Gains Upper Hand in Damascus Fighting*

18,000 Syrian Children Victim to Organ Harvesting

Civilians help Syrian Army Drive out Terrorists from Damascus*

Sunnis ,Shi’as Pray for Unity Week after Bombing*

Stop the International War of Genocide on Syrians Catholic Patriarch Demands*

Clinton’s Emails Reveals a Sunni-Shiite War Would be Good for Israel and the West*

Wahhabism as a Tool of Colonialism*

Saudi Arabia Facing Flack from both Sunni and Shia Leaders*

Trump-Israel Struggling to Save ISIS to divide and Conquer Syria and Iraq*

Trump Orders Drone Strike on Syrian Mosque, 40 Civilians Killed*

Purim Fest Recalls of the Jewish Act of Genocide*

U.S. Airstrikes Slaughter 230 Innocent Civilians in a Single Night in Mosul*

U.S. Airstrikes Slaughter 230 Innocent Civilians in a Single Night in Mosul*

By Matt Agorist

Reports coming out of Iraq this week are downright terrifying with local media reporting up to as many as 230 innocent civilians slaughtered in U.S. coalition airstrikes — in a single night.

According to the Kurdish media company, Rudaw, 137 people – most believed to be civilians – died when a bomb hit a single building in al-Jadida, in the western side of the city on Thursday. Another 100 were killed nearby.

As the British Telegraph reports, the casualties were “mostly women and children,” and “were pulled from three adjoining houses in the Jadida neighbourhood of west Mosul overnight Wednesday and into Thursday morning, according to witnesses.”

“There was so much bombing, and so many deaths,” an elderly woman said of the strikes.

“Pieces of human flesh were flying in all directions.”

According to Antiwar, Central Command said that they were “aware of the loss of life” and were carrying out “further investigation,” while insisting that all of their strikes against Mosul overnight “comply with the Law of Armed Conflict.”

Centcom also reported that “military forces conducted nine strikes consisting of 67 engagements coordinated with and in support of the government of Iraq against ISIS targets.”

Al Jazeera’s Stefanie Dekker, reporting from Erbil in northern Iraq, said fighting in the area had intensified in the last few days.

“For more than a week there was a stalemate as Iraqi forces struggled to advance on the Old City, but in the last few days, the fighting has intensified.

“There are air strikes and ISIL is also using civilians homes with civilians in them. People have been caught in crossfire and targeted by ISIL … The shelling is indiscriminate,” said Dekker.

“There is no safe passage out of the city. Civilians are literally everywhere.”

Reports from civilians in Mosul say ISIS fighters are employing tactics such as establishing fighting positions on the rooftops of apartment buildings. These buildings are occupied by innocent civilians and are also the targets of U.S. coalition strikes.

“ISIS made us keep our door open, so they could get onto the roofs at any time. They even broke down the walls between houses so they could move around,” a local resident told RT.

“There were so many killed in the airstrikes, rockets, and mortars… Our entire neighbourhood is in ruins. There are maybe ten houses still standing. The children are traumatized. When the jets start flying, they start crying,” another woman said.

If the aim of ISIS is to maximize civilian casualties by manipulating the US military into striking these targets, that, they have done. If their aim was to reduce the airstrikes, they have failed.

However, if we examine the mission of ISIS more closely, the former is far more likely.

The mission of ISIS is to create a rift in society in which there are extremists and everyone else. They want to eliminate the ‘gray zone’ — the area in which different religions and cultures peacefully coexist — by any means necessary. By using civilians as human shields, knowing that US forces will bomb them anyway, this tactic plays right into their strategy.

The men, women, and children who watched their father, mother, son, or daughter explode right before their eyes this week, as a U.S. bomb destroyed their home, will undoubtedly foster resentment toward the West. This approach is the most powerful recruiting tool the terrorist regime has.

As the Free Thought Project has previously reported, the West, in their constant bombardment, interference, meddling, and policing of the world, has fostered a breeding ground for terrorism. Indeed, America’s foreign policy, alone, since 9/11, has created a million Osama bin Ladens — all funding and arming of ISIS excluded.

Sadly, the military industrial complex shows no signs of slowing its cancer-like growth.

As long as Americans keep buying the lies spewing from the warmongering tyrants in power, nothing will change. As long as Boobus Americanus continues to believe “It’s our freedom they hate,” death and destruction will rain down — until there is nothing left.

Source*

Related Topics:

U.S.-Led Coalition Bombs School in Raqqa*

U.S.-Led Coalition Bombs School in Raqqa*

More than 30 Syrian civilians were killed when the U.S.-led coalition bombed a school in the town of al-Mansour in the Raqqa province, Turkish Anadolu news agency reported.

Earlier in the day, an informed source cited by the SANA news agency also said that the U.S.-led coalition raid struck a school south of the town of Mansour, nearly 19 miles west of Raqqa. Unverified reports estimated up to 33 people may have been killed in the strike. The school was being used as a shelter for refugees.

The refugees were peaceful citizens who had fled the fighting from the cities of Aleppo, Raqqa and Palmyra and had come to al-Mansour for safety.

The province of Raqqa is still under the control of Daesh terrorists, but there are also Syrian civilians living there.

The bombing killed mostly women and children. It is noteworthy to point out that it was the Syrian Human Rights Monitoring Centre that confirmed the attack as being carried out by the western coalition.

Following the attack, the official representative of the western coalition told CBS News that there is yet no evidence that civilians were killed in an airstrike. He highlighted that the coalition is quite serious about such information and is checking it thoroughly.

Informed sources told SANA news agency earlier in the day that the school, which served as a shelter for 50 refugee families, was completely destroyed.

The news agency also reported about an airstrike on the Tabqa region in the western part of Raqqa, killing at least 40.

Furthermore, there were reports that the coalition had bombed a mosque in the village of al-Jin in Aleppo where people were praying at the time. As a result of the bombing locals took out 42 bodies from under the rubble.

On Friday, U.S. Department of Defense spokesperson Capt. Jeff Davis said that the strike targeted an adjacent building. Davis also said that the Pentagon was not “aware of any credible allegation of civilian casualties.” The strike killed 42 people, most of them civilians, as the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported on Thursday.

However, despite oral testimonies of activists and photographic materials, the Pentagon hastened to state that the aircraft dropped bombs not on the mosque, but on the building next to it where al-Qaeda militants were allegedly hiding.

A representative of the U.S. Central Command, Colonel John Thomas, said that the evidence provided by the activists will be carefully studied and the incident will be investigated but he did not specify what measures will be taken against the perpetrators who killed innocent civilians.

It is becoming quite clear that the mainstream media doesn’t like to highlight failures of the international coalition. It is not only in Syria but in Iraq too that the media fails to cover attacks carried out by the U.S.-led coalition. For example, when covering the operation in Mosul most of the mainstream media preferred not to stress their audience’s attention on civilian casualties and the humanitarian situation in the region.

The liberation of Aleppo, which took place at the end of 2016, was also presented from a different perspective. The leading mainstream media covering Aleppo emphasized the suffering of the city’s residents who were forced to leave their homes and flee.

However, the fact that the Russian and Syrian military created special corridors for safe passage of the civilians was not highlighted.

The situation around the city was assessed as a humanitarian disaster with journalists claiming that it was unfolding against the backdrop of war crimes allegedly committed by government troops.

There were about 100,000 civilians held hostage in Aleppo, whereas, in Mosul in Iraq there are more than 750,000 people who cannot exit the city due to the presence of terrorists; however, the media hasn’t highlighted that enough.

On March 4, a monthly report by the Combined Joint Task Force said that “at least 220 civilians have been unintentionally killed by coalition’s strikes since the start of Operation Inherent Resolve” and expressed regret over the loss of lives.

Source*

Related Topics:

Syrian Army Gains Upper Hand in Damascus Fighting*

Trump-Israel Struggling to Save ISIS to divide and Conquer Syria and Iraq*

Syria’s Water Cut off by Turkey Following McCain, Erdogan Meeting*

“E.U. has been supporting the terrorists in Syria from the very beginning”*

Syrian Education Ministry Launches the Psychological and Social Support Guide*

USD 8 million is the Value of Syrian Fruit and Vegetable Exports to Belarus in Past 3 months*

Public Buses in Aleppo take to the Streets after 5 Years of U.S.’s ISIS war on Syria*

Amnesty Int’l Admits Syria’s ‘torture prison’ Report Fabricated Entirely in U.K.*

Priceless Ancient Seed Bank Saved from Destruction in Syria*

Syrian Army Gains Upper Hand in Damascus Fighting*

Syrian Army Gains Upper Hand in Damascus Fighting*

By Alexander Mercouris

Latest reports from the fighting in eastern Damascus say that the Syrian army has successfully recovered all the strong points captured by the Jihadis in their attack of yesterday.

In particular the Syrian troops have recaptured the ‘Fabric Factory’ – captured by the Jihadis yesterday – which is a lynchpin of Syrian defences in the area.

The following video shows the Syrian army’s counter-attack, including its use of tanks and armoured vehicles

The Jihadis have suffered heavy losses to achieve ephemeral gains in a series of attacks against the single most heavily defended territory under the government’s control, which is Syria’s capital Damascus.

If the Jihadis failed to capture Damascus during the period from 2012 to 2015 when many of Damascus’s suburbs and much of the surrounding countryside were under their control, and when the Syrian army was on the back-foot in the rest of Syria, they are scarcely likely to make significant gains there now, when the Syrian army has the backing of the Russian air force and is advancing on all fronts.

In strictly military terms the Jihadi offensive therefore makes little sense.

The Russians have said that they believe the purpose of the offensive is to disrupt the reconvening of the negotiations between the Syrian parties which are due to take place shortly in Geneva.

These negotiations are a parallel series of negotiations to the ones taking place under Russian sponsorship in the Kazakh capital of Astana.  They have been deadlocked ever since they began, and if the purpose of the Jihadis’ Damascus offensive is indeed to disrupt them then it looks frankly like a redundant effort.

More likely the offensive serves multiple other purposes.

Firstly, it has the political purpose of demonstrating that at a time when the Jihadis across Syria are in headlong retreat they remain a force to be reckoned with, including in the suburbs of Damascus, where they have recently suffered a succession of major defeats.  Through the attacks the Jihadis have shown that despite these defeats and their losses they are still capable of striking at the heart of Syrian power, which is Damascus itself.

Beyond that Al-Qaeda – which is the force which is ultimately responsible for the offensive – undoubtedly hopes to shake the Russian-Turkish sponsored ceasefire.  Already Al-Qaeda has succeeded in drawing one Jihadi group – Jaish al-Islam – which was observing the ceasefire, into join the attack.

Beyond these straightforwardly political considerations, it is likely that Al-Qaeda is trying to take some of the pressure off ISIS, which is reeling from the effect of Syrian army offensives against it in central and eastern Syria (in the area around Palmyra) and in north east Syria, where the Syrian army has reached Lake Assad and the Euphrates river and is now within striking distance of Raqqa.

Al-Qaeda and ISIS are overtly antagonistic to each other, with ISIS originating as a breakaway from Al-Qaeda, and Al-Qaeda refusing to recognise ISIS’s Caliphate.  However that hostility does not extend to the Jihadi fighters belonging to the two groups, who move easily between them.  Al-Qaeda’s leadership has probably come under pressure from its fighters to take action to help ISIS.  The attack on Damascus is the result.

The Jihadis have shown great willingness to sacrifice large numbers of fighters in these attacks.  Their defeat today represents the second time over the course of the last few days that they have tried to storm the industrial eastern districts of Damascus only to be driven back with heavy losses.  It remains to be seen whether they will renew their attack for a third time.

Source*

Related Topics:

18,000 Syrian Children Victim to Organ Harvesting

Trump Orders Drone Strike on Syrian Mosque, 40 Civilians Killed*

Trump is Filling Top Pentagon and Homeland Security Positions With Defense Contractors*

Syrian Air Defense Shoots Down one of 4 Israeli Warplanes Targeting Military Site near Palmyra*

U.S. Deploying Thousands More Ground Troops to Kuwait to Fight in Iraq and Syria*

U.S. Marines Invade Syria, helping ISIS and Turkey*

Trump-Israel Struggling to Save ISIS to divide and Conquer Syria and Iraq*

Syria’s Water Cut off by Turkey Following McCain, Erdogan Meeting*

U.S. Admits Using Radioactive Weapons in Syria that Left Thousands of Iraqi Babies Deformed*

Trump is Filling Top Pentagon and Homeland Security Positions With Defense Contractors*

Trump is Filling Top Pentagon and Homeland Security Positions With Defense Contractors*

By Lee Fang

President Donald Trump has weaponized the revolving door by appointing defense contractors and their lobbyists to key government positions as he seeks to rapidly expand the military budget and homeland security programs.

Two Department of Homeland Security appointments Trump announced Tuesday morning are perfect examples.

Benjamin Cassidy, installed by Trump as assistant secretary for legislative affairs, previously worked as a senior executive at Boeing’s international business sector, marketing Boeing military products abroad. Jonathan Rath Hoffman, named assistant secretary for public affairs, previously worked as a consultant to the Chertoff Group, the sprawling homeland security consulting firm founded by former Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff. The firm has come under fire for advising a variety of firms seeking government contracts, including for full-body scanners deemed invasive by privacy activists. Hoffman also led a state chapter of a neoconservative military-contractor advocacy organization during the 2016 presidential campaign. Neither position requires Senate confirmation.

Personnel from major defense companies now occupy the highest ranks of the administration including cabinet members and political appointees charged with implementing the Trump agenda. At least 15 officials with financial ties to defense contractors have been either nominated or appointed so far, with potentially more industry names on the way as Trump has yet to nominate a variety of roles in the government, including Army and Navy secretaries.

Before their confirmations, Jim Mattis and John Kelly, the secretaries of the departments of Defense and Homeland Security, were primarily paid by defense firms.

Mattis was paid $242,000, along with up to $500,000 in vested stock options, as director of General Dynamics, a company that produces submarines, tanks, and a range of munitions for the military. Mattis also received speaking fees from several firms, including Northrop Grumman. Kelly previously served in a number of roles at defense contracting consulting and lobbying firms and worked directly as an adviser to Dyncorp, a company that contracts with the Immigrations and Customs Enforcement.

Defense firms have eagerly watched as Trump recently unveiled a budget calling for $54 billion in additional military spending next year, as well as an additional $30 billion for the Pentagon and the Department of Homeland Security for this fiscal year, which ends on September 31. About $15.5 billion of the $30 billion is slated to be spent on new military equipment.

The spending spree will provide a brand new opportunity for defense lobbyists to get business for their clients. And the most effective lobbying generally involves contacting former colleagues in positions of power.

Major lobbying groups for the arms companies, including the National Defense Industrial Association and the Aerospace Industries Association, welcomed the selection of Secretary Mattis, who has already scheduled meetings with industry executives. Secretary Kelly has pledged to work more closely with the private sector, promising greater collaboration with private firms to accomplish his agency’s goals.

To carry out this private-sector friendly agenda, defense officials have taken major roles throughout Trump’s administration.

Pat Shanahan, nominated last week by Trump to serve as deputy secretary of defense, is a vice president at Boeing who formerly led the company’s missile defense subsidiary. Disclosures show that Elaine Duke, the nominee for deputy secretary of homeland security, previously consulted for Booz Allen Hamilton, General Dynamics, and the Columbia Group, a small contractor that builds unmanned naval drones.

The nominee to lead the Air Force, former New Mexico Congresswoman Heather Wilson, worked as a consultant to a Lockheed Martin subsidiary after retiring from public office. The company sought Wilson’s help to maintain a $2.4 billion a year contract to manage Sandia National Laboratories, the premiere nuclear weapons research facility, and to keep the contract closed to competition. “Lockheed Martin should aggressively lobby Congress, but keep a low profile,” Wilson urged the company in a memo revealed later by an inspector general report.

Trump’s pick for national security council chief of staff, retired Lt. Gen. Keith Kellogg, has worked at a variety of defense contracting companies. After serving in senior roles in Iraq’s provisional government after the 2003 invasion, Kellogg left the government for the private sector. He told the Washington Post in 2005 that he joined Oracle to “establish a homeland security business unit” at the firm, and later joined CACI International, a company with major contracts in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Following CACI, Kellogg joined Cubic Defense in 2009 to develop the company’s combat training business.

A list of temporary political appointees recently published by ProPublica reveals a number of less-known influence peddlers who have taken senior roles in the administration.

Chad Wolf and Lora Ries, two recently appointed advisers at the Department of Homeland Security, are formerly registered defense lobbyists. Wolf lobbied for Harris Corp. and the United Launch Alliance, a partnership between Boeing and Lockheed Martin. Ries previously lobbied for a range of defense and homeland security contractors, including Altegrity, Boeing, Implant Sciences Corp., General Dynamics, L1 Identity Solutions, and TASC Inc.

In the White House, one of the newest members of the National Economic Council staff is Michael Catanzaro, formerly a registered lobbyist working for both Boeing and Halliburton.

Palanatir Technology’s Justin Mikolay, formerly a chief in-house lobbyist for the company who worked to win over billions of dollars in Army contracts, was quietly appointed to serve as a special assistant in the Office of the Secretary of Defense.

Several appointees are associated with SBD Advisors, a consulting that firm that advertises its ability to facilitate “engagements between the technology and defense sectors,” and is advised by a high profile team of former government leaders, including former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff retired Adm. Mike Mullen and former National Security Agency Director of Operations Ron Moultrie.

SBD Advisors’d Sally Donnelly and Tony DeMartino work as temporary political appointees at the Office of the Defense Secretary, according to the list assembled by ProPublica. Kristan King Nevins, recently appointed as chief of staff to Second Lady Karen Pence, also previously worked at SBD Advisors as the director of communications.

The Trump administration is the “military-industrial complex personified,” said William Hartung, director of the Arms & Security Project at the Center for International Policy. Hartung noted that while the administration is bringing arms industry officials into government, it is also demanding a massive increase in military spending and appears to be escalating conflicts in Syria and Yemen.

“In short, the Trump proposals are an armsmaker’s dream come true,” he said.

Source*

Related Topics:

Trump Orders Drone Strike on Syrian Mosque, 40 Civilians Killed*

Trump To Continue Bankrupting The U.S. Through Foreign Wars*

Under Trump U.S. Drone Strikes Have Gone Up 432%*

Trump-Israel Struggling to Save ISIS to divide and Conquer Syria and Iraq*

Organized Campaigns Hit At Trump’s Foreign Policy Plans

Leaked Trump Presidential Memo Would Free U.S. Companies to Buy Conflict Minerals from Central African Warlords*

Trump to Send ISIS Fighters to Guantanamo*

Jewish Members of Trump Administration Might Explain a Few Things*

Over 100 Civilians Dead after Recent U.S. Raids on Alleged al-Qaeda Training Camps*

Over 100 Civilians Dead after Recent U.S. Raids on Alleged al-Qaeda Training Camps*

By Amando Flavio

The so-called war on terror waged around the world by the United States is still raging on. The truth about this war is that every single bullet or bomb fired by United States forces drives dozens of people into the hands of militants.

The war is not hitting terrorists, as the Pentagon wants us to believe. It is the innocent civilians who are bearing the brunt of United States’ firepower. Since the United States started the war on terror in the Middle East in 2001, literally countless amounts of civilians have lost their lives in the region.

In February 2016, the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) revealed that it recorded a record high civilian death and injuries on the United States war on terror in Afghanistan the previous year. UNAMA said Afghan civilian casualties’ figures in 2016 – killed or maimed from the war – stood at 11,418.

When this announcement was made by UNAMA, a former top Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) official, Jack Rice, said the indiscriminate killings of civilians by United States armed forces in Afghanistan are driving the country’s civilian population to join militant and other terrorist groups in the country. Mr Rice stated that the U.S.-led war against terror in the country is a complete sham. According to him, the rise in civilian casualties in wars waged by the United States in the Middle East and other parts of the world is a single contributing factor to the proliferation of militant and terrorist groups in these areas.

However, the United States government isn’t bothered by critics such as Mr Rice. The wars still continue and more civilians die.

Recent raids by the United States military on alleged al-Qaeda training camps in Syria and Yemen have left over 100 innocent people dead, according to human rights groups monitoring the situation in the two restive countries.

Both Syria and Yemen are ravaged by bloody civil wars. The United States is in some ways involved in these two wars. In Syria, the United States is leading a bombing campaign, claiming to target the Islamic State. The United States is again supporting a Saudi-led air campaign against rebels fighting to overthrow the current government of Yemen.

Recently, the White House announced that it is sending ground troops to Syria – though unrequested by Assad. But the truth is that U.S. ground troops have been in Syria and Yemen for some time now.  The troops gather intelligence, as well as carrying out covert raids on militants’ bases in the countries.

In late January, President Donald Trump authorized a raid on an alleged al-Qaeda headquarters located in the al Bayda Governorate in Yemen. After the raid, the Pentagon described it a success. But human rights activists told media outlets that the raid only succeeded in killing many civilians.

This compelled the United States Central Command to say its internal review team “concluded regrettably that civilian non-combatants were likely killed in the midst of a firefight” during the raid, adding that casualties may include children.

Although initial reports suggested around 10 civilians died in the raid, a subsequent investigation carried out by the BBC revealed over 50 civilians perished – the majority of them were women and children. Local residents told the BBC that although some militants sporadically use their village as a meeting place, as of the time the United States forces arrived, no militants were present in the village. Residents categorically denied the Pentagon’s claim that their village is a headquarters for al-Qaeda in the al Bayda province.  They revealed that when the United States forces arrived and started shooting, many in the village were confused, and because the country is at war, many residents have guns. They also opened fire, leading to many bombs being dropped on them by fighter jets. Residents said they retrieved over 50 bodies, many of them burned beyond recognition. The death toll was also confirmed by activists who visited the village.

As this appalling situation just passes, on March 16, U.S. drone aircraft fired missiles and dropped a 500-pound bomb outside the city of Aleppo in Syria. As usual, the Pentagon said the raid targeted al-Qaeda militants, and that it killed scores of them.

But activists have said the raid never hit any militants. According to activists, the bombs were dropped on civilians who had gathered at a local mosque in Jinah for a religious activity. It is said over 46 civilians were killed in the raid.

The Western-backed Syrian Observatory for Human Rights described the scene as a “massacre,” revealing the dead were mostly civilians. Photos from the area showed rescue workers pulling mangled bodies from a mound of rubble.

“Bodies filled the space,” said Mohamed al-Shaghal, a journalist who arrived at the scene shortly after the attack. He said the mosque was completely destroyed, adding that many residents are now living in fear as they don’t know when the next bomb will drop.

Source*

Related Topics:

Trump Orders Drone Strike on Syrian Mosque, 40 Civilians Killed*

U.N. Praises Iran’s “Exemplary” Leadership in Hosting Refugees*

Syrian Air Defense Shoots Down one of 4 Israeli Warplanes Targeting Military Site near Palmyra*

Nine Young Children Killed: The Full Details of the Botched U.S. Raid in Yemen*

U.N. Confirms U.S. Airstrikes in Afghanistan Killed At Least 18 Civilians*