The debate over bombing ISIS in Syria rests on what one can only assume is a deliberate misapprehension. The imputation of this "debate" is that we "must do something" to quell and defeat ISIS; and the essential, imperative thing we must do to accomplish this vital goal is to bomb Syria. But of course the UK is already bombing ISIS. It bombs ISIS nearly every day -- in the group's heartland, Iraq. It has flown "thousands of missions" against ISIS, dropped tons of bombs, killed many people. Has this quelled or defeated ISIS, or curtailed its reach? Obviously not.
The origins, core strength and power centers of ISIS are all in Iraq. Syria, for all its inherent horrors, is a sideshow, a minor front for ISIS. As Patrick Cockburn notes, in Syria ISIS holds large tracts of desert territory but only one substantial city; in Iraq, it controls several major cities, rich oil fields, and strategic routes that make it a constant threat to the capital itself.
The UK has been bombing ISIS in this core for some time: "thousands of missions," Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said this summer. Obviously, these continual bombings in the group's core have not affected its ability to wage war in the region or strike elsewhere in Europe. Why would bombing its hinterland in Syria have any effect?
Air Task Force-Iraq (ATF-I) is part of Joint Task Force-Iraq (JTF-I). It is currently deployed as part of Operation IMPACT, which is the Canadian Armed Forces’ (CAF) support to the Middle East Stabilization Force (MESF) – the multinational coalition against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in the Republic of Iraq and in Syria.
The following provides information about airstrikes conducted by Canadian CF-188 Hornet fighter aircraft to date. An airstrike is an aerial attack which is intended to inflict damage on or destroy an objective.
This map details CAF airstrikes between June 14 (14 / 6)
by Ramzy Baroud - PalestineChronicle.com I still remember that smug look on his face, followed by the matter-of-fact remarks that had western journalists laugh out loud.
“I’m now going to show you a picture of the luckiest man in Iraq,” General Norman Schwarzkopf, known as ‘Stormin’ Norman, said at a press conference sometime in 1991, as he showed a video of US bombs blasting an Iraqi bridge, seconds after the Iraqi driver managed to cross it.
But then, a far more unjust invasion and war followed in 2003, following a decade-long siege that cost Iraq a million of its children and its entire economy. It marked the end of sanity and the dissipation of any past illusions that the United States was a friend of the Arabs.
This is the film the UK & Australian Governments do NOT want you to see! Documenting the accounts of families living with the hydrocarbon industry as a neighbour, this hour long documentary is shocking, as it reveals the day to day pollution these people live with – pollution of water, air, light and sound, some of the the basic human requirements needed to survive.
The blind eye that the authorities and the hydrocarbon industry turn to these families living conditions, and the complete disregard to the environmental damage done to the bush by this, is truly disgraceful.
I have not seen another film like it, telling us, warning us how really dreadful life is living amongst the gas wells. I have a huge respect for the families in Australia that held onto their land and shared their stories with us. It was especially moving when Brian Monk speaks directly to the audience near the end of the video, very powerful indeed - we would be very wise to listen and act accordingly.
by F. William Engdahl - NEO This was definitely not supposed to happen. It seems that an Israeli military man with the rank of colonel was “caught with IS pants down.” By that I mean he was captured amid a gaggle of so-called IS–or Islamic State or ISIS or DAESH depending on your preference–terrorists, by soldiers of the Iraqi army. Under interrogation by the Iraqi intelligence he apparently said a lot regarding the role of Netanyahu’s IDF in supporting IS.
In late October an Iranian news agency, quoting a senior Iraqi intelligence officer, reported the capture of an Israeli army colonel, named Yusi Oulen Shahak, reportedly related to the ISIS Golani Battalion operating in Iraq in the Salahuddin front.
In a statement to Iran’s semi-official Fars News Agency a Commander of the Iraqi Army stated, “The security and popular forces have held captive an Israeli colonel.” He added that the IDF colonel “had participated in the Takfiri ISIL group’s terrorist operations.”
He said the colonel was arrested together with a number of ISIL or IS terrorists, giving the details:
“The Israeli colonel’s name is Yusi Oulen Shahak and is ranked colonel in Golani Brigade… with the security and military code of Re34356578765az231434.”
The war drums are getting louder in the aftermath of ISIS attacks in Paris, as Western countries gear up to launch further airstrikes in Syria. But obscured in the fine print of countless resolutions and media headlines is this: the West has no legal basis for military intervention.
Their strikes are illegal.
“It is always preferable in these circumstances to have the full backing of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) but I have to say what matters most of all is that any actions we would take would…be legal,” explained UK Prime Minister David Cameron to the House of Commons last Wednesday.
Legal? No, there’s not a scrap of evidence that UK airstrikes would be lawful in their current incarnation.
Then just two days later, on Friday, the UN Security Council unanimously adopted Resolution 2249, aimed at rallying the world behind the fairly obvious notion that ISIS is an “unprecedented threat to international peace and security.”
"It's a call to action to member states that have the capacity to do so to take all necessary measures against (ISIS) and other terrorist groups," British UN Ambassador Matthew Rycroft told reporters.
The phrase “all necessary measures” was broadly interpreted – if not explicitly sanctioning the “use of force” in Syria, then as a wink to it.
Late on November, 21, right-wing extremists in Ukraine severed the four electricity lines which transmit electricity from Ukraine to Crimea. The terrorist attacks, using explosives, cut domestic electricity service to much of Crimea’s population of 2.3 million.
Two of the transmission lines were damaged during the night of November 20-21. The coup de grace cutting all service to Crimea was delivered to the other two lines the following night. Photos of downed pylons with Ukrainian or Crimean-Tatar flags hanging on them have been posted online.
“Crimea has been completely cut off,” Viktor Plakida director of Crimea’s state energy company, Krymenergo, told TASS Russian news service.
A state of emergency has been declared in Crimea. Reserve electricity production using portable gas turbines and diesel generators is assuring electricity service to public institutions, including the national airport at Simferopol, bus and train service and television and radio broadcasting. But most Crimean citizens were left without power at home.
Nuclear power's role in our energy future will doubtless play a large part in the forthcoming COP21 talks in Paris. Long-cited as the "safe" and "carbon friendly" alternative to fossil fuels, even environmental stalwarts like George Monbiot promote nukes, if only for the transitional period required for the world to switch to CO2-free forms of energy generation.
But does nuclear power really buy us time when its downstream by-products are an eternal threat?
John LaForge is a long-time staffer at Nukewatch, the Wisconsin-based nuclear watchdog and environmental justice group. His countless articles on the topic have appeared in Nukewatch's quarterly and at online sites like: New Internationalist, Z Magazine, The Progressive, Earth Island Journal and at CounterPunch.org, where I found his latest, 'Exploding Radioactive Waste Warning: Keep It Above Ground' a disturbing account of a homegrown nuclear emergency you probably haven't heard about.
John is co-recipient of the US Peace and Justice Studies Association’s 2004 Social Courage Award, and is a 1986 War Resisters League Peace Awardee who has spent in total more than four years in prisons and jails for his non-violent resistance to our war system.
John LaForge in the first segment.
And; the World became a distinctly more dangerous place yesterday with the shooting down by Turkey of a Russian warplane. That the two Russian pilots were reportedly shot dead as they hung in their parachutes, and the body of at least one paraded across social media, makes a Turkish walkback from its actions, and any Russian face-saving measure, even more difficult. Turkey's actions are, in the opinion of my second segment guest, the gravest crisis NATO has ever faced - seeing one of its members unilaterally provoking war with a regional Superpower.
Patrick Henningsen is a freelance journalist and co-founder of the online news site, 21st Century wire, launched during the 2009 Copenhagen Climate Change Summit. Patrick's geopolitical analyses and commentaries are featured online at RT and Al Jazeera, and of course at 21Wire, where he's been working overtime these past two weeks since the attacks in Paris, and now covering this stunning development over Syria.
Patrick Henninsen and what bitter grist Turkey's shootdown brings to NATO's table in the second half.
And; Victoria Street Newz publisher emeritus and CFUV Radio broadcaster, Janine Bandcroft will join us at the bottom of the hour to bring us newz of the coming week from our city's streets, and beyond there too. But first; John LaForge and "when it rains it burns," Nevada's little-known nuclear mishap.
In considering the terrifying but also sadly predictable news of a Russian fighter jet being downed by two Turkish fighters, let’s start with one almost certain assumption — an assumption that no doubt is also being made by the Russian government: Turkey’s action, using US-supplied F-16 planes, was taken with the full knowledge and advance support of the US.
In fact, given Turkey’s vassal status as a member of US-dominated NATO, it could well be that Ankara was put up to this act of brinksmanship by the US.
What makes the downing of the Russian jet, and the reported death of at least one of its two pilots (the other was reportedly captured alive by pro-turkish Turkmen fighters on the Syrian side of the Syria-Turkish border, and will presumably be returned to Russia) so dangerous is that as a member of NATO, supposedly a “mutual assistance” treaty that binds all members to come to the defense of one that is attacked, if Russia were to retaliate by downing a Turkish military plane, NATO countries including the US would be obligated to come to Turkey’s defense.
Russia knows this, and that is why so far the Russian response to the downing has been muted.
Earlier today, it’s reported that a NATO Turkish F16 aircraft shot down a Russian Su-24 Fighter Bomber with an air-to-air missile near the Syria-Turkish border. It is the first time that a NATO fighter has downed a Russian combat aircraft since the start of the Cold War nearly 70 years ago.
A disturbing video was released online depicting US and NATO-backed “moderate rebels” celebrating over what appears to be a dead Russian pilot, while shouting jihadist, Takfirist slogans, and could be heard saying “Mujadehin!” Another “moderate” could be heard saying, “We should have burned him before he was dead.”