US military boosts weapons airdrops to Syrian opposition – reports

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A growing number of opposition groups in Syria are getting increased weapons and ammunition supplies from the US Air Force to tackle Islamic State, according to US media reports citing the country’s military.
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The weapons are intended for opposition forces closing in on IS’s self-proclaimed capital Raqqa in Syria, USA Today .

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The “expanded” airdrops are “helping ground forces take the offensive to [the Islamic State] and efforts to retake Raqqa,” Gen. Carlton Everhart, commander of the US Air Mobility Command, is quoted by the news outlet.

Currently, the Syrian Democratic Force (SDF) – an alliance of various militias, mainly formed by Kurdish fighters – is continuing its  to retake territories around Raqqa. SDF is among key opposition forces being backed by the US-led international coalition in Syria.

The weapons supplies “are absolutely essential” for the irregular forces fighting on the ground, the US Air Force spokesman in Baghdad Col. John Dorrian claimed, according to USA Today.

Meanwhile, Everhart reportedly claimed that the US military is being extremely precise while delivering arms and equipment to the opposition in Syria. “We’ll get it within 10 or 15 meters of the mark,” he said.

The US-led coalition has been repeatedly conducting military airdrops for the opposition groups in Syria. However, such missions have not always gone according to plan.

Back in October 2014, a weapons airdrop by the US Air Force apparently ended up in the hands of IS terrorists, who released a video claiming to have seized the cache of arms. The weapons had been intened for the Kurdish forces battling jihadists who were besieging the Syrian town of Kobane at the time.

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Pentagon spokesman Col. Steven Warren later said that two bundles of weapons have been lost. While one of them was destroyed by an air strike, another “went astray and probably fell into enemy hands.”

“There is always going to be some margin of error in these types of operations,” Warren added.

In December last year, US President Barack Obama granted a waiver for some of the restrictions on the delivery of military aid to “foreign forces, irregular forces, groups, or individuals,” if those groups are supporting the US’s alleged counter-terrorism efforts in Syria.

Reacting to the decision, Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said the move could result in some of the weapons getting into the hands of terrorists.
Such an occurence would pose “a serious threat not only for the region, but the entire world,” he warned.

On December 9, 2016 US Democratic lawmaker Tulsi Gabbard  the Stop Arming Terrorists Act bill. She alleged that the CIA in fact supplied arms to the opposition, some of whom cooperated with terrorists including al-Qaeda. “This madness must end,” she urged.

US sends 10 Guantanamo Bay detainees to Oman

Oman has announced it’s accepting 10 Guantanamo detainees, just days before President Obama leaves office. The men were on the list of those approved from transfer.

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A concise announcement from the Omani News Agency in Muscat said Sultan Qaboos Bin Said has agreed to take in the men “in consideration to their humanitarian situation.” It described their status there as being in “temporary residence.”

There was no immediate word from the US Defense Department about the transfer.

The Miami Herald reported Oman as “the largest Guantanamo resettlement nation” with the sultanate accepting 20 captives in three transfers “of 10, four and six men in January 2016 and in 2015.”

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The men had previously been approved for transfer but remained in limbo because they came from Yemen, which is considered unstable, since the country has been in a state of political crisis since 2011, coupled with an ongoing Saudi-led military assault.

During his election campaign, outgoing US President Barack Obama promised to close the controversial military prison, arguing it served as a recruiting tool for Islamic State. There were 242 prisoners at the site when he took office. After Monday’s announcement there are 45 remaining. As Obama tried to meet his campaign promise, he was met with strong opposition from Congressional lawmakers worried that downsizing the facility and housing detainees in US state prisons would make it targets for reprisals.

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In November 2015, Congress issued a ban on transferring detainees to US soil for any reason, including trial.

The US opened the prison at the US naval base in Cuba to hold “militants” suspected of ties to al-Qaeda and Taliban after the 9/11 attacks. Most were never charged with a crime, but their indefinite detention, sometimes as long as 14 years, and their mistreatment triggered international criticism.

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US officials said 19 of the remaining 55 prisoners at the military prison were cleared for release and could be freed in the final days of Obama’s presidency, AP reported.
A September report released by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence said 122 of the 693 detainees transferred out of the prison, or 17.6 percent returned to fighting.

Most of the 693 detainees held at Guantanamo were transferred under the Bush administration. Of Bush’s transfers, 21 percent were confirmed to have re-engaged in military activities. Only 9 of the 161 detainees transferred by Obama, or 6 percent, have resumed fighting, according to AP.

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The majority of Guantanamo prisoners have been sent to Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan.

President-elect Donald Trump tweeted two weeks ago for a cessation in transfers, a request the Obama White House rejected, arguing “these are extremely dangerous people.”

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During his campaign, Trump said not only does he want to keep the military prison open, but also “load it up with some bad dudes.”

US B-52 bombed Idlib, Syria, killing over 20 civilians

More than 20 civilians were killed in a B-52 strike carried out by the US on the Idlib province in Syria on January 3, according to Russian Chief of the General Staff Valery Gerasimov.

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Gerasimov slammed the Western coalition in Syria for failing to achieve any meaningful results,” adding that “at the same time, significant numbers of victims among the civilian population and government forces were reported.

As we remember, in September last year, the US aviation carried out an attack in the Deir-ez-Zor targeting government forces. After this attack, Islamic State started its advance, Gerasimov said as cited by RIA Novosti news agency.

“The latest example of this is the January 3 airstrike, when a B-52 bomber – without warning the Russian side – hit a target in the town of Sarmada, Idlib Province, which is covered by the cessation of hostilities agreement. Over 20 civilians died as a result of the airstrike.”

He did not provide any further details.

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The US Defense Department announced on January 6 that a strike had killed 20 people in Sarmada, Idlib; those killed were described as Al-Qaeda militants, AFP reported.

The September airstrikes by the US-led coalition killed 62 and injured 100 Syrian soldiers near the Deir ez-Zor airport, a vital supply conduit for the enclave besieged by Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) forces.

In November, US Central Command described the incident as an unintentional, regrettable error,” which was primarily based on human factors.

READ MORE: Pentagon chief claims US fighting ISIS alone, Russia doing ‘virtually zero’ in Syria

Russia was notified of the planned strike via the “de-confliction” hotline, but was given the wrong location, said Brigadier General Richard ‘Tex’ Coe, who headed the CENTCOM investigation.

When Russian officers called the hotline to report the strikes were targeting Syrian positions, they were kept on hold for 27 minutes because the US officer who was the designated point of contact was not available. The bombing continued in that interval, according to Coe, and stopped once the Russian message went through.

During the Tuesday meeting, Gerasimov said the operation carried out by the Russian Air Force since September 30, 2015 has turned the tide of the Syrian war.

Since the beginning of its operation in Syria, Russia’s military jets destroyed around 200 illegal oil-extracting facilities belonging to IS, 174 oil-producing plants, 111 groups of oil tank trucks, the head of General Staff added.

This allowed not only to breach the IS supply system, but also to deprive them of their main income, Gerasimov added.

All strikes are carried out only after the confirmation of data from several sources, including the space intelligence and drones, Gerasimov emphasized.

Seven Ways Obama Is Trying to Sabotage the Trump Administration

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BY JOHN HAYWARD

President Barack Obama’s final weeks in office seem dedicated to setting foreign and domestic policy on fire to make life as difficult as possible on his successor, Donald Trump. Here are some of the biggest mousetraps Obama scattered across the White House floor on his way out:

Betraying Israel at the United Nations: Obama’s refusal to block a United Nations vote against Israel, his administration’s shadowy machinations to bring that ugly motion to the floor, and Secretary of State John Kerry’s long-winded broadside against Israel will leave President Trump with a massive political crisis in the Middle East, and quite possibly a security crisis, if terror groups and their “political wings” are emboldened by the rebuke of Israel.

Obama’s Israel maneuver also damages American credibility, teaching would-be allies that the United States is not the best friend to have. America’s erstwhile battlefield allies in Syria can teach the same lesson, assuming any of them are left alive to take the podium. This comes at the very moment aspiring hegemons in China and Russia are showing their allies how Beijing and Moscow will go to the mat for them.

Obama’s team thinks it was clever to saddle Trump with an international edict the U.S. president cannot easily reverse. They might not have thought this all the way through, because some of the options that are available to Trump could leave internationalists, and Palestinian leaders, cursing Barack Obama’s memory.

Note that even some commentators friendly to Obama, and sources within the Obama Administration itself, have described the Israel vote as a deliberate act of sabotage aimed at Trump, because Obama is “alarmed” by some of Trump’s appointees.

A new Cold War with Russia: After eight years of relentlessly mocking anyone who said Russia was a major geopolitical threat to the United States (most famously including his 2012 presidential opponent, Mitt Romney) Barack Obama suddenly realized: “You know what? Russia is a major threat!”

He also awoke to the dangers of cyber-warfare, after an entire presidency of treating electronic espionage as a purely political problem to be minimized and spun away, because taking it seriously made him look bad. Who can forget how Obama left victims of the OPM hack twisting in the wind for weeks, because the administration didn’t want to admit how serious the attack was?

But then a top Democrat political operative fell for a crude phishing scam, and the Democratic National Committee got hacked, so Obama… well, he still didn’t take cyber-espionage seriously. He slapped the snooze bar again, because as one anonymous official put it, they thought Hillary Clinton was a cinch to win the 2016 election, “so they were willing to kick the can down the road.”

No, it was Hillary Clinton’s loss in the election, and the desperate push to damage President-elect Trump’s legitimacy, that made the president who politely ignored China hacking 25 million American citizens’ private data get tough on information security. Until now, states involved in cyber-espionage never got anything worse than a few carefully-chosen words of sour disapproval from the expiring administration, but the Russkies received a sprinkling of sanctions, and 35 diplomats were expelled.

Russia responded by unleashing an army of ducks and trolls from the depths of the Kremlin. The New Cold War is only a few days old, and it’s already weirder than the old one was.

Presumably Obama thinks he’s maneuvered Trump into a position that will make whatever rapprochement he might have entertained with Moscow more difficult, or at least more politically costly for the new President. The end result might be easier relations between Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin, and a lingering memory of how little Barack Obama cared about cybersecurity until it was politically expedient for him to freak out.

Ban on oil drilling: An overt act of sabotage directed at the American economy itself, leaving an especially heavy bootprint on Alaska. Smug administration flacks spent the past couple of weeks assuring media talking heads that Obama’s unprecedented abuse of an obscure law was impossible for his successor to reverse. It’s like they stayed up all night, looking for executive actions that can’t be undone by the new President four weeks later. (Amusingly, Obama dropped this bomb on our energy sector just a few weeks after publicly advising Trump not to abuse executive orders.)

It’s likely that legions of lawyers will battle throughout 2017, and perhaps beyond, to determine if Obama’s “latest poke at Trump” (as Politico put it) really is irreversible. What a lovely parting gift from the departing President to the country that elected him twice: a pile of gigantic wealth-destroying lawsuits!

National-monument land grab: The other theoretically irreversible presidential edict discovered by Obama’s munchkins is the ability to designate national monuments. Another 1.65 million acres in Utah and Nevada was yanked off the market in the last week of December, bring Obama’s Antiquities Act acreage up to an unprecedented 553 million acres.

“This arrogant act by a lame duck president will not stand. I will work tirelessly with Congress and the incoming Trump administration to honor the will of the people of Utah and undo this designation,” thundered Senator Mike Lee of Utah. Sixty-five percent of his state is now under the wise and compassionate environmental protection of the same government that turned the Colorado River into a toxic-waste dump.

Eliminating the national immigration registry: Just in case Trump got any ideas about using it as the basis for the “enhanced vetting” he has promised for immigrants from terrorist-infested regions, the Obama administration killed a long-dormant program called NSEERS that once committed the unforgivable politically-incorrect sin of tracking military-age males from violently unstable Muslim-majority countries.

It’s highly debatable whether the NSEERS program was of any practical use. When it pulled the plug, the Department of Homeland Security noted that the post-9/11 program called for collecting data that is now routinely collected for most foreign visitors, along with more sophisticated biometric information. Almost everyone saw the elimination of these roles as a purely symbolic act — i.e. political sabotage directed at the incoming President.

The great Guantanamo jailbreak: After paying little more than lip service to his promise to close the Guantanamo Bay prison for much of his presidency, Obama went into overdrive in his last years, transferring over 150 detainees. A shocking number of them ended up back on the battlefield.

Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA) of the House Foreign Affairs Committee wrote a Wall Street Journal op-ed this week to sound the alarm about Obama’s “midnight push to empty out Guantanamo.” 

“The White House has repeatedly released detainees to countries it knew lacked the intent and capability to keep the detainees from returning to terrorism. The results have been deadly,” Royce wrote, challenging the wisdom of such Obama administration brainstorms as dropping al-Qaeda’s top bomb maker into Bosnia, a country with “limited security services” but plenty of radical mosques and unemployed military-age males. Royce’s committee has been investigating allegations the administration tried to pay the bomb-maker $100,000 to refrain from passing his deadly skills along to eager apprentices. Hunting down the rest of the transferred prisoners who transferred themselves right back into the global jihad will be a job for the Trump administration.

Depicting Trump’s election as a disaster: Let’s not forget Obama’s acts of rhetorical sabotage, such as describing Trump’s presidential campaign as a crime against American class and racial harmony, or his wife wailing that all hope was lost for America’s children. Trump himself has taken note of the “many inflammatory President Obama statements and roadblocks.”

It’s hard to remember a previous instance of the outgoing president attacking the legitimacy of his successor this way, especially during the transition, before the new chief executive has actually done anything. And it’s probably not over yet. The time for big executive orders is growing short, but Obama is always just one day away from calling a press conference and saying something else that will make the transition more difficult.

Of course he can still talk all he wants after January 20th, and he’s given every indication he won’t follow the dignified path of his predecessors and allow the new president time to chart his own course, but there’s no substitute for the bully pulpit of the presidency. The timber of Barack Obama’s political voice will be very different on January 21st than it was on January 19th. More likely than not, he’ll use it before he loses it.

VIDEO: MOTHER PREPS YOUNG DAUGHTERS FOR SUICIDE BOMBING

Will Muslims speak out against this evil?

The Alex Jones Show – DECEMBER 21, 2016

This disgusting video shows how depraved the “moderate rebels” really are, as a mother prepares her young daughters to go on a suicide mission.

Shoko Hirano

muslims will find an excuse to blame this on the west instead of the real devils
firetheho

The real Devil, False Prophet Mohammed.
Smiley Gladhands

This is going go on until people break and begin eradicating Islam.
teddyk kyddet

Where or when will the Pork chop rebellion begin?
Jack Gerald

7 and 9 girls?? Muhammad and pedo bear approve
Tyler Benson

Thats messed up, these fucktards are insane to think they get anything out of this. Their own kids……….
Jesusistheonlysavior

this is the evil wicked cult of islam that truing a father to send his daughters to blow themselves up and others to please the evil god of islam . Islam should be banned in all western countries .
extremelydangerous

AND ARE THESE SUB-SPECIES pre humans that LIBTARDS INTEND TO BRING INTO THE WEST????? If someone wants to help these children, ELIMINATE the fathers, save ONLY THE CHILDREN!!!

Credible or fake? Journalists clash in fiery RT debate on news sources in Syria (VIDEO)

In the wake of the liberation of eastern Aleppo in Syria, journalists Eva Bartlett, from Canada, and Dilly Hussain, from the UK, clashed in a heated RT debate on the credibility of sources on the ground and the agenda of the media outlets covering the situation in the war-torn state.

Read more

‘Lies are their agenda’: Canadian journalist blasts MSM Syria coverage at UN event (VIDEO)

Bartlett recently made headlines during a press conference after she accused corporate media of a biased agenda in Syria, labeling a large chunk of its sources as either “not credible” or “compromised.” In particular the journalist, who herself visited Syria, lashed out at the organization of White Helmets, saying they “recycled” pictures of one and the same girl on several occasions. According to Bartlett, the mainstream media effectively reported information which was “opposite” to what actually happened on the ground.

Dilly Hussain challenged her views during the RT debate, claiming Bartlett’s narrative echoed “state propaganda.” Citing local “activists tweeting” on the ground, Hussain for his part stressed that the Russian-backed mission of Syrian also targeted civilians.

Bartlett in return questioned the impartiality of the sources cited by Dilly, saying she herself spoke to doctors in Aleppo and civilians who fled the militant-held areas, who testified that people “were prevented” by terrorists from actually escaping Aleppo.

Here is the full video of the heated verbal exchange:

‘Unlike Western mainstream media, I’ve spent the last three days in East Aleppo’

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Western media and propaganda have supported the incarceration, torture, abuse and horror that these civilians had had to go through says journalist Vanessa Beeley. Columnist Brent Budowsky and Daniel McAdams of the Ron Paul Institute join the debate.

Trends

Syria unrest

After liberating eastern Aleppo, government troops are making advances against terrorists that still control several districts of the Syrian city.

In response, the militants have again been targeting civilian areas of western Aleppo.

Meanwhile, the mainstream media continue to blame President Assad and Russia for the civilian suffering.

The grim picture of Aleppo’s liberation painted in the mainstream media has prompted crowds to protesters on the streets of European cities. People gathered in the German city of Hamburg as well as Paris calling to stop the slaughter of people in Aleppo.

Also, the lights of the Eiffel Tower have been turned off in solidarity with the civilians of Aleppo.

RT spoke to independent researcher and journalist Vanessa Beeley, the executive director of the Ron Paul Institute Daniel McAdams and columnist for ‘The Hill’ Brent Budowsky and heard some very different opinions on the Syrian conflict.

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RT: Why so much hysteria in the media? Why is no one talking about defeating terrorists – who are Al-Nusra, the Al-Qaeda affiliate in Syria?

Brent Budowsky, columnist for the Hill: Nobody wants to kill and defeat the terrorists more than I do and more than the US, but what is happening in Aleppo is a moral crime against humanity. I agree with what Secretary of State John Kerry said that the Russian government should do everything to stop it, to end it, to support a ceasefire, to end the carnage, the killing and the bombing of innocent civilians. The UN is concerned about it. And I agree with their investigation into possible war crimes. I agree with what the pictures tell us. The bombing of civilians and the massacre of the innocents must stop. My strong advice to President Putin would be to follow John Kerry’s advice and end that carnage and killing right now. So should Assad, so should the Syrian army. It is a joke to treat them as liberators; they are mass-murdering civilians…

RT: Vanessa, what is your reaction to this political view of the events? As a journalist, how do you feel about that?

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RT in Aleppo: Locals deny reports that pro-Assad forces shot at evacuees’ buses

Vanessa Beeley, journalist: I’ve just returned from three days in East Aleppo, and I would like to 100 percent correct the lies that are being disseminated by the media, think tanks, governments across the West. Particularly your guest who has just uttered complete lies. I’ve spent basically three days in all the various liberated areas of East Aleppo… Many of the testimonies that we received from the civilians that this gentleman has just accused Russia and Syria of bombing, actually told us that they had been incarcerated for the last four years by the various US-backed terrorist militant groups such as Al-Nusra Front, Ahrar al-Sham, Harakat Nour al-Din al-Zenki whom we know beheaded the 12-year old Palestinian child. We were told stories about civilians who were trying to leave this imprisonment when the Russian and Syrian governments opened the humanitarian corridors. I interviewed one lady, I have her on film, where she tells me that one woman, who had been kept in a condition of starvation and malnutrition by these militant factions – who were stockpiling any humanitarian aid that came in and either selling it at extortionate prices. When this lady went on her knees to beg for food, she was shot in the mouth by the militant factions that have been imprisoning these civilians for the last four and a half years. Your [American] media and propaganda have supported that incarceration, torture, abuse and absolute horror that these civilians had had to go through.

RT: The spokesperson of the US State Department said he hasn’t seen the videos of people celebrating on Aleppo’s streets. He’s in a senior position; he must know what he’s talking about, doesn’t he?

Brent Budowsky: We can witness day by day dead babies by dead babies. You can watch the CNN, the BBC, any other television station. The point is – the killing, the bombings of civilians must stop. The dead children and babies is a moral outrage against humanity.

Read more

‘When camera gone they leave people under rubble’ – Aleppo residents on Western-backed White Helmets

Vanessa Beeley: Can I ask one question? Where are these sources being able to transmit this information from? Because in East Aleppo there is no 3G, there is no wi-fi, there is no electricity. So I’d like to know how these sources are able to get this information via Skype connection to organizations – I’ll use that term loosely – like CNN, BBC, Channel 4. I would very much like to know how they achieve it and how there’re able to do that in East Aleppo. Unlike the corporate mainstream media, I have been in East Aleppo for the last three days, therefore, I’m giving you eyewitness testimony unlike your mainstream media that has not been there and relies upon spurious activists – like the White Helmets, who are funded by every single nation that has a vested and declared interest in regime change in Syria. That is your reliable source. Or perhaps the ‘Aleppo Media Center’ – French Foreign Office funded…

Daniel McAdams, executive director at Ron Paul Institute: This is a good example of what is wrong with the mainstream media. You have a mainstream media source like this Brent Budowsky who goes on television telling us: “You’ve got to believe the US government.” This is the same media that lie through its teeth about Iraq; that lied through its teeth about Benghazi, about the slaughters that were not happening there. There are no foreign media sources in East Aleppo right now. They are not on the ground. They are all using information that they are getting through rebel sources. That is the truth. So, Budowsky, what you are doing right now is you are putting out fake news. And you know it because there are no sources on the ground. You’re saying, ‘Just believe the US government.’ You’re supposed to be in the media! You’re supposed to be doing independent work…

Go back to 2005 in a document from the US Embassy in Damascus was sent back to Washington outlining exactly how to destabilize and overthrow the Syria government, which is exactly the roadmap they took. Who was really responsible for the carnage in Syria? It is the interventionists in the West and their enablers in the mainstream media that push a regime change policy that destroys countries like Iraq, like Syria, like Libya, like Afghanistan, and so on. They are the real perpetrators of this crime.