What you “know” about Aleppo is not true

Aleppo war hypocrisy uncovered

translation and commentary by Don Hank

Featured below is my translation of an article on the site of Movimento 5 Stelle (m5s), an increasingly popular anti-Establishment party which, if it comes to power in the vacuum created by Prime Minister Renzi’s resignation, is likely to take Italy out of the euro. Unlike the UK, whose leaders tenaciously still cling to the EU following the Brexit, Italy’s exit from the euro could be more brusque and throw the EU into a tailspin. Of the major anti-elite parties in the EU core countries, m5s is the boldest, most astute and most brutally honest in its critical analysis of western military and foreign policy. The article below should be book-marked for reference because it lists casualty estimates for the “good” war in Mosul and the “bad” war in Aleppo and shows that the numbers of civilians killed in US-waged wars and the Israeli conflicts with Palestine are extremely high, making Western criticism of Russia and the Syrian government look hypocritical. The article does not list the casualties in Aleppo simply because we hear or read about these every day thanks to the media dutiful reporting them in a tone clearly condemnatory of Russia (and Assad), as if only Russian wars entailed collateral damage.  This article sets the record straight, highlighting the rank hypocrisy of the US and allies.

I took the trouble to investigate independently the casualty statistics listed by Fulvio Scaglione in his article below. Here are links to 3 months of UN figures cited:

http://www.iraqinews.com/features/unami-announces-death-toll-iraq-september/

http://reliefweb.int/report/iraq/un-casualty-figures-iraq-month-october-2016-enar

http://reliefweb.int/report/iraq/un-casualty-figures-iraq-month-october-2016-enar

Not all of the deaths can be attributed directly to US intervention. However, ISIS and its opponents killed a very large number of people as a result of the Obama administration’s refusal to prevent ISIS from entering the towns and cities. He did, however, provide arms to “moderate” terrorists in Syria.

While many conservatives take a dim view of the UN, this organization is the only one providing data of t his kind. Without the UN, the world would be reliant mostly on biased data from outlets loyal to the US government that caused  much of the suffering.

Sadly, from my personal association with prominent and less prominent Brexit activists I have seen that only a minority of them understand that declaring their independence from the EU is only half the battle. They seem unaware that the real enemies are the US and NATO, which constantly beat the war drums against Russia and Assad, despite their own illegal and failed invasions in the Middle East, Ukraine and Kosovo, which leave the world infinitely less safe than before their interventions.

I receive alerts from the main anti-EU parties and after reading their literature, for years in some cases, I would rank them as follows in terms of their grasp of the geopolitical reality, particularly regarding US-waged wars. From most aware to least aware, they are:

Movimento 5 Stelle (m5s) (founded by Beppe Grillo. they will field a candidate for prime minister)

Front National  (founded by Marine LePen, who is eyeing a run for president of France)

Partij voor de Vrijhijd /Freedom Party (founded by Geert Wilders, who is eying a run for prime minister of Holland)

I am not including UKIP (UK Independent Party) in this list because Brits are split on their feelings toward the Atlanticist Establishment; while UKIP was instrumental in bringing about the exit of the UK from the EU, they were only one of several influential groups in that endeavor.   I would put Nigel Farage personally high on the list, because he is in line with Donald Trump – willing to deal with, rather than demonize, the Russians and Syrians. He has in fact traveled to the US to endorse Trump. However, the Brexit groups are divided with regard to remaining in NATO. Some think NATO is necessary for “defence,” despite the fact that all of NATO’s actions in recent years have been offensive and have violated international law regarding sovereignty of states. I also am not including the AfD because there is, at this point, virtually no chance that Germany will exit the EU any time soon.

 

http://www.beppegrillo.it/2016/12/la_guerra_di_aleppo_non_e_solo_come_ve_la_raccontano.html

What they’re not telling you about the war in Aleppo

Movimento 5 Stelle /5 Star Movement   The blog of the stars

by Fulvio Scaglione for TPI

The battle of Aleppo, with the bloodshed of recent days and the terrible years that preceded them, marked among other things the collapse of the Western information system , which is almost indistinguishable from partisan propaganda at this point. Everything in the Western narrative about Aleppo smacks of fraud and deceit. Since the publication of unfiltered and unverified data provided by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, founded and headed by an adversary of Bashar al-Assad and maintained by the British government, the word “siege” has been applied liberally for Aleppo but only in recent months, and never in the over three years that the city was attacked from three sides by rebels and jihadis, who came to occupy 60 percent of the urban territory.

But in a way, these are small details. The real issue is the refusal to confront a reality which can be summarized as: what happened in Aleppo in recent weeks is not at all exceptional. On the contrary, it is the norm of contemporary war. Don’t believe us? Then let’s have a look around. Take Mosul, the largest Iraqi city, which has been occupied by ISIS for two and a half years.

In mid-October the offensive to free it from the jihadists got underway (finally). Great fanfare, triumphant tones, exultation for civilians who “were being freed” from areas previously under the control of militants (while civilians in Aleppo who come from the neighborhoods dominated by al-Nusra Front, are not liberated but rather “escape”). Now, two months later, everything has come to a standstill and no one is talking about liberating Mosul. Not only that, the offensive by Americans, Kurds and Iraqis has been halted to such an extent that ISIS has removed 4-5 thousand fighters from the Iraqi front and sent them to retake Palmyra in Syria. Why?

The answer is very simple. The two and a half years of grueling bombing campaign gave ISIS plenty of time to organize the defenses in the city. The roads were mined or boarded up or replaced by galleries known only to the militia fighters. Some buildings were demolished to clear lines of fire; elsewhere walls were built to block the lines of fire and passage of the attackers. Finally, thousands of civilians were trapped to be used as human shields.

To be “liberated” Mosul will have to become another Aleppo: the bombings, civilian casualties, children torn apart by the strikes, and so on. There is an alternative, namely, house to house combat with hundreds and hundreds of dead Iraqis and Kurds — which has already been going on, even if military operations are almost at a standstill.

The UN Mission for assistance to Iraq (UNAMI), directed by Jan Kubis, former Foreign Minister of Slovakia (2006-2009), has made available mind-boggling data on the number of Iraqi deaths, civilian and other, of the last few months. In September, ie before the offensive on Mosul, the number of Iraqi civilians killed was 609 (951 injured); the number rose to 1,120 (with 1,005 injured) in October and to 926 (930 injured) in November.

As for the military and other combatants, the figures are: 394 killed (208 injured) in September, 672 killed (353 injured) in October, 1959 killed (and 450 injured) in November. Result? Everything blocked, meaning further suffering for imprisoned civilians in Mosul and more time for ISIS to continue building up.

Of course, nouveaux philosophes [a group similar to the Neocons in the US—Don Hank] and other clowns can harp on atrocities and human rights violations in Aleppo. But they are nothing but hypocrites. In 2004, the US Army fought two battles to “liberate” the Iraqi city of Fallujah, in fact occupied by the militants of al-Qaeda, the forerunners of the militants of al-Nusra, which play such an important role in the battle of Aleppo.

According to the independent NGO Iraq Body Count, between 572 and 616 civilians died in the first battle (April 2004); between 581 and 670 died in the second (November 2004) battle. The Americans used phosphorus arms and apparently depleted uranium. Have you ever heard of any new philosophers rending their garments over this? Do you recall Corriere de Sera [an establishment newspaper–Don] ever mentioning “slaughterhouse” in headlines about Fallujah, as it did referring to Aleppo?

 

And what about Gaza? According to the most conservative data, which are those published by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, only 45 percent of the 2,100 Palestinians killed in the Gaza Strip during the 2014 war were real civilians and non-combatants. That’s still 945 unarmed people killed in two months of clashes.

Thus it was the very countries that now cry foul over the Aleppo operations, that block motions censure Israel at the UN.  And isn’t Gaza a perfect copy of the eastern districts of Aleppo, attacked with bombs by the Russians and by Assad’s Syrians?

And yet UNICEF has informed us that in the first six months of 2016, Afghanistan had a record number of civilian casualties: 1,601 dead and 3,565 wounded. The worst half-year since the anti-Taliban invasion in 2001. According to UN estimates, 60 percent of Afghan civilians are vulnerable to attack by the Taliban and other insurgent groups and criminals.

But 40 percent of 1,601 deaths is still 640 deaths, or 640 innocent Afghans killed in six months (more than 3 per day) by troops arriving from our countries, that is, by those who are supposed to be protecting and “liberating” them. But everyone is silent; these dead do not deserve the indignation reserved for the dead of eastern  Aleppo.

Thus the war of our times is utterly disgusting. Those who pretend to believe that in Chechnya and Aleppo different things were done than elsewhere, for example in Fallujah or Gaza, are quite simply lying. All of today’s wars are fought on the backs of civilians. All of them.

And in all wars, the armed men, with or without uniforms, are, at the most, collateral victims. Politicians, military people and terrorists know this quite well. So the real issue is to avoid wars as much as possible, not to pretend that there are good wars and bad wars.

(translation from the Italian by Don Hank)

 

The latest fake story from US intel

The new fake news story from US intel

 

Don Hank

The latest msm reports about the supposed Russian hacking are all focused on a side issue and their aim is to deceive you through a subtle ruse.

A prime example is the report of a new statement by the sneaky intel director, who sounds as if he is on Trump’s side but if you read the below-linked article, you see he is still pretending the Russians have been proven to be the hackers responsible for the DNC email leaks. This news of the slightly modified statement is being reported enthusiastically by naive conservatives who fail to notice that the main part of the fake narrative is still in place, namely, the fake story that the Russians were proven to have done the hacking. I showed yesterday, based on the flimsy justifications they gave for their ant-Russian narrative, that they absolutely have no evidence against Russia. Their stated “evidence” reflects the exact same tactic used by a UK “court” (which was not really a court of law) that did an investigation of Litvinienko’s death and after a lengthy probe, finally issued the verdict that Litvienienko was “probably” murdered by Putin. Guess what? There is no such thing as a verdict of “probably” in the jurisprudence of any country in the world! They might as well have simply said “we really really want to believe it was Putin because we hate his guts since he refuses to bow to the Washington hegemon.”

The reporters and the politicians they quote are all still speaking as if the Russians definitely did the hack but are conceding only a minor point — ie, that they may not have affected the election. Yet the allegation that the Russians did it is not proven, not even close. The most likely version is that the hack was an inside job while the entire msm is pushing the story that it was the Russians.

But now, they are focusing on whether the hacking affected the elections, and the new fake story will be that, well, yes, the Russians did it and this is proven (it’s not, of course, as I have shown) but we can’t prove that it affected the elections or that the Russians wanted to affect the elections. This is a more sneaky way of lying to the public and if the public falls for it, the elites win.

This new fake story makes the Establishment seem fair even though in reality they are still the same old deceivers, perpetrating a fraud for which they should be indicted in a court of law.

So why are they doing this? Because their main objective is no longer to un-elect Trump (they’d like to but can’t) but rather to discredit the Russians so that Trump cannot fully implement his plan to establish good relations with them. They will falsely claim that Putin has deceived a good-hearted but naive Trump.

This way the Neocons and Neo-liberals think they can continue to smear Putin and Assad and continue with their plans to destroy Syria and the rest of the Middle East, including the few Christians who are left. Because they expect the public to buy the story that Russia did do the hacking but that the hacking did not necessarily affect the election.

The only way this despicable plan can be thwarted is for the public not to buy this nonsense.

You can help by forwarding this article, including my article proving that the accusers do not have a case against Russia: http://laiglesforum.com/analysis-shows-us-intel-agencies-inventing/4034.htm

Meanwhile, while the intel agencies and their partners in the DNC have no evidence at all to back up their fairy-tale about Russian hackers, according to the WSJ, the state of Georgia has solid evidence – namely, a US government IP address left at the hack site — that does prove the US government hacked their voter data base. Now that’s evidence. And that is the MO of our current government.

Analysis shows US intel agencies invented “Russian” hack story

Analysis show US intel agencies invented “Russian” hacking story

Don Hank

Please forward a link to this article far and wide. The DNC is using the phony story debunked below to influence the electoral college. They could steal the election and plunge us into another 4 years of Obama on steroids.

Countless bytes have been expended trying to show why the story about Russians hacking the DNC is false. However, most omit the most relevant details and fail to analyze the statements by these agencies, which simply do not bear a moment’s scrutiny.

USA Today says Hillary was right about 17 agencies swearing on a stack of Korans that the Russians are responsible for the hacking of the DNC’s emails.

QUOTE:

On Oct. 7, the Department of Homeland Security and Office of the Director of National Intelligence issued a joint statement on behalf of the U.S. Intelligence Community. The USIC is made up of 16 agencies, in addition to the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.

“The U.S. Intelligence Community (USIC) is confident that the Russian Government directed the recent compromises of e-mails from US persons and institutions, including from US political organizations. The recent disclosures of alleged hacked e-mails on sites like DCLeaks.com and WikiLeaks and by the Guccifer 2.0 online persona are consistent with the methods and motivations of Russian-directed efforts. These thefts and disclosures are intended to interfere with the US election process. Such activity is not new to Moscow—the Russians have used similar tactics and techniques across Europe and Eurasia, for example, to influence public opinion there [where is his evidence? Don Hank]. We believe, based on the scope and sensitivity of these efforts, that only Russia’s senior-most officials could have authorized these activities.”

So there you have it. Now why would 17 Obama-loyal agencies lie?

Perhaps because deceit is what they are being paid for. They’re spies, silly.

Here is what ZeroHedge said:

 

QUOTE:

The “17 agencies that actually confirmed” it was the Russians? Well it turns out that was one guy, namely DCI James Clapper: the head of US intelligence. The same man who committed perjury before congress after his NSA surveillance program was leaked [Hank’s emphasis].  He issued a statement that included the phrase:

We believe, based on the scope and sensitivity of these efforts, that only Russia’s senior-most officials could have authorized these activities.

The very next sentence is also of interest:

Some states have also recently seen scanning and probing of their election-related systems, which in most cases originated from servers operated by a Russian company. However, we are not now in a position to attribute this activity to the Russian Government.

 

So these “17 agencies have 2 unrelated sets of justifications for their conclusions, namely:

methods and motivations, as mentioned in the USA Today quote, and

scope and sensitivity as mentioned in the ZeroHedge quote.

For those who haven’t noticed that this has all the earmarks of statements made by professional liars who think we’re high school dropouts, let’s analyze these “justifications.”

1–methods: Since Wikileaks is responsible for divulging the leaks, only they could possibly be in a position to know the methods used to do the hacks. Further, the agency does not tell us what the methods were. So this is simply another way of saying “we are making this up as we go.”

2–motivations: This is irrelevant because the Russians are by no means the only group that might be highly motivated to hack DNC emails. Half of US voters and hundreds of groups in the US and elsewhere would be so motivated, so there is no selection factor here that would point specifically to the Russians.

3–scope of the [hacking] efforts: There was a vast cache of emails, it is true. However, these all could have come from a single server or a very small number of servers. Once a hack is successful, one can tap into a large trove of  information with very little effort. So “scope” is not relevant. Any hacker anywhere could have done this. Wikileaks is known for the vast scope of its efforts. In fact, since there is no real proof of Russian involvement in hacks, there is no way anyone could know the scope of  typical Russian hacking efforts in order to make a comparison.

4–sensitivity of the [hacking] efforts: What sensitivity? This is sufficiently vague that no one can really know what is meant. Is Clapper referring to the fact that the hacked information is sensitive? If so, then this too is totally irrelevant because almost all hackers are seeking sensitive information, not just the Russians.

But all of this smoke screen is intended to cover the only relevant detail, namely, the fact that the source of this information is irrelevant and does not change the two relevant facts:

The DNC is not denying that the hacks are real and accurate. This is absolutely amazing because it is the most relevant fact for voters and is being obfuscated by the imaginary Russian involvement.

The hacked information is damning to the Clintons and would, of course, influence anyone to reconsider voting for Hillary because, based on this information, she clearly is a shady character who belongs in the Big House and not in the White House.

Please disseminate this. The DNC is using the phony “evidence described above to influence the electorate college in an effort to steal the vote.

PS: Now there is a new story and all the major msm outlets, including Fox News (eg, Tucker Carlson), are carrying it: The new, completely fake, story is that the Russian hack story is proven (when the above analysis shows it is not) but the real issue is whether or not the hacked information affected the election. Why are they floating this new story? Because they know it is too late to un-elect Trump, but they think they can convince the public that the Russians are not worthy to be our allies. This is intended to derail Trump’s plans to make friends with the Russians and hence, peace in the Middle East.

It will only work it YOU the public buy the fake story.

Another rah rah moment in American history

Trump victory: another rah rah moment

by Don Hank

I wonder if you will recall that the GW Bush wars were started by rah rah talk, as when Dubbya stood at ground zero and, with his arms draped around two NY firemen, proclaimed “the people who knocked down these buildings are going to hear from us.”

So ask yourself: Did “the people who knocked down these buildings” really hear from us? Now every American who experienced that moment lived through the wars that followed. But remember that the “people who knocked down these buildings” were mostly Saudis because it was they who founded and funded – together with the US Deep State – Al-Qaeda. But instead of declaring war on the Saudis, our real enemy, we attacked the enemies of our enemy, the Taliban (which had around that time plotted to oust the Saudi royals) and Saddam, who ran a secular type government with little or no emphasis on Shariah and even had a Christian in his cabinet. The Saudis hate secular leaders and the US helps them eliminate them. (Here is a clue as to why we are so obliging to them: http://laiglesforum.com/how-the-petrodollar-perpetuates-islamic-terror-2/3315.htm).

Thus, absurdly, Dubbya was aiding and abetting the “people who knocked down these buildings” and killed up to 3000 Americans.  And he and his Neocon pals had to know that the Christians and other large groups would leave Iraq in droves if we “won,” and that chaos would ensue, forcing the US to occupy.

And how about that Afghanistan? What a great victory! Rah rah. Not. US and allied troops are still there and the carnage is heart-wrenching – for all but the arms industry and its financiers.

Thus we can state with confidence that, facing the TV cameras at ground zero that day, George W. Bush was thumbing his nose at a bleeding America. (This fits in perfectly with Bush’s cover-up of the Saudi role in 9-11 as reported subsequently by the Washington Post ).

Now with that deception in mind, you will note the unbridled euphoria over the Trump election. Rah rah. Millions of Americans were relieved that we would now have peace.

And in fact, we might.

But we might not either.

Yes, Donald Trump had promised he would cooperate with Russia. The prospect of peace that this signaled is one important reason many Democrats crossed over to vote for him, for example.

But what many of us have forgotten is the eerily similar rah rah moments of the Bush years and what rah rah moments usually mean in our great country. The greatness often lies solely in the rah rah, not in the situation on the ground, in the aftermath, our bleeding hearts and pocket books.

Some exceptionally alert observers are already pointing out that Trump has picked two rank Neocons for his cabinet, who have both warned about “Russian aggression” in Ukraine, despite the fact that it was the US and Europe who started and supported the bloody coup in Kiev for the obvious purpose of goading Russia into a defensive action that could be spun by our media into “aggression.”

Trump’s presumptive defense secretary has warned that the Russian “aggression” in Ukraine is “worse than we think.” This is a lie, as you know if you follow the web site that provides regular sitreps on the conflict in E. Ukraine. Bookmark this site and go there at least once a week. If enough Americans did, our “leaders” would not dare arm the Kiev fascists. Even, if you followed the OSCE’s regular Ukraine reports, you would also know the aggressor is Kiev’s troops (many of which are fascists, eg, the Azov Battalion) that the US government supports.

But Mattis is not the only one beating the war drums against the country Trump promised to “cooperate with.” Mike Pompeo, Trump’s pick for CIA director, recently returned from a trip to Kiev, and after fruitful discussions with the Neo-Nazis there, says that “Putin’s aim is to take over Ukraine” (Mike would have fit in nicely in a Clinton cabinet) , implying that Russia wants to attack Ukraine militarily. If that were true, Putin would have done the job a long time ago before NATO had deployed troops all over Eastern Europe, including 30,000 at the Russian borders (reminding Russians of Hitler’s Operation Barbarossa that destroyed much of Russia and killed millions of Russians). No one is saying that a Ukraine thoroughly disgruntled with US and EU lies, like the false promise to let the country join the EU, might not voluntarily ally itself with Russia. It would be hard to paint that as Russian aggression, but recent anti-Russian (hence racist) drivel from the Western msm shows that no lie is too big for the warmongering elites to manage.

The latest E. Ukraine (Novorossia is the real name) sitrep shows that the Neo-Fascist sympathizers the US government supports in Kiev are now recruiting Lumpenproletariat, common thugs, with promises of free land, stolen from Russian speakers.

Now we are at another crossroads, another rah rah moment in American history. The euphoria over the Trump victory is great. Many are willing to go along with anything this leader wants. Like Bush, the Evangelicals have anointed him as God’s servant. The chessboard is arrayed exactly as before.

The question is: will you forget the lessons that Dubbya taught us and say to yourself: this time is different and the rah rah heralds a better world? Or will you recognize the rah rah moment for what it is: a time for you to say “not this time!”?

Postscript:

Writing for a news and opinion site is an endless job, as it should and must be. Since this was written, Trump is reportedly eyeing shifty arch-Neocon Mitt Romney for the position of Secretary of State.

So what’s wrong with that you ask? Here is a video featuring Mitt saying “Russia is our worst geopolitical foe” who always “lines up with the world’s worst actors”, among whom he counts Assad, the most pro-Christian leader in the Middle East, who is fighting for  his country’s life against Al-Qaeda and ISIS, groups that are armed and trained by our “ally” Saudi Arabia.

Trump has said he will cooperate with the same Putin that Romney has spent much of his career smearing.