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Southfront

‘Make Trade, Not War’ is China’s daring plan in the Middle East

by Pepe Escobar (cross-posted with the Asia Times by special agreement with the author) Under the Belt and Road Initiative, Beijing aims to connect western China to the eastern Mediterranean China’s “Go West” strategy was brought into sharp focus at a forum in Shanghai last weekend. Billed as the Belt and Road Initiative: Towards Greater Cooperation between China and the Middle East, it highlighted key aspects of Beijing’s wider plan.

Syrian War Report – January 19, 2018: Syrian Troops Almost Closed Eastern Idlib Pocket

https://southfront.org/syrian-war-report-january-19-2018-syrian-troops-almost-closed-eastern-idlib-pocket/ On January 18, the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and Iranian-backed militias liberated the village of Qaytal fom Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (formerly Jabhat al-Nusra) in southern Aleppo and almost closed the eastern Idlib pocket. Late on the same day, ISIS reportedly captured thirty villages, including Rasm al-Dhaba, al-Muwaylah, abu Ajwa, Muakar Shamali, Huma, Najm Al-Zuhur, Umm Qurun and Rasm Arira, in northeastern Hama and southwestern Aleppo from Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham

Moveable Feast Cafe 2018/01/16 … Open Thread

2018/01/16 11:30:01Welcome to the ‘Moveable Feast Cafe’. The ‘Moveable Feast’ is an open thread where readers can post wide ranging observations, articles, rants, off topic and have animate discussions of the issues of the day. The ‘Moveable Feast Cafe’ will have two new open threads each week. The Saker stated moderation policy will apply eg ‘no caps’, no obscenity … etc to all post. The Cafe is now open for

The Rise of China and Threats in Afghanistan

by Ihsanullah Omarkhail  for the Saker blog China’s development has attracted worldwide attention in recent years. The growing economy and advances in military buildup are heatedly debated around the world and particularly in China since it opened up its door to reforms in 1978. Moreover, China has attracted billions of dollars in investment from abroad and trillions of dollars in domestic private investment. A dozen years ago, China barely had

The US’ Kurd Project: Iranian intelligence has declassified data on 14 American bases in Syria

At the very end of last year on the 31st of December, the Pentagon once again acted out an intrigue around its military bases in Syria. US defence minister James Mattis warned, that any attack on US bases would be repelled and the attackers would be punished. The media agencies ‘Russia Today’ and ‘Sputnik’ proved the existence of 10 American military bases in the territory of the Syrian Arab Republic.

The good news about the Trump Presidency: stupid can be good!

[Note: This column was written for the Unz Review] Just a few days shy of the one year since the inauguration of Donalt Trump as President of the United States I think that it would be reasonable to say that pretty much everybody, besides the Neocons and a few unconditional supporters, is now feeling quite appalled at what the past year brought to the USA and the planet. Those who

Finding the answer to a riddle shrouded in a mystery

by Pepe Escobar (cross-posted with the Asia Times by special agreement with the author) The art of the non-deal might be the only way out of the stand-off between the US and North Korea High-level inter-Korean talks at the border village of Panmunjeom not only represent a vital step in Winter Olympics’ diplomacy but also offer a tantalizing chance of a breakthrough in stalled six-party discussions. In stark contrast with

Iran protests: Reply to the WSWS response to my critique

by Ramin Mazaheri for the Saker blog I would like extend my thanks and appreciation to the World Socialist Web Site for publishing a response to my critical analysis of their coverage of the recent economic protests in Iran. I think readers appreciate open dialogue between journalists. Open dialogue is the foundation of diplomacy, and thus also the foundation of politics. Dialogue means increasing understanding – not bickering – and

Russia without SWIFT

by Kakaouskia for the Saker blog Greetings to the Saker community and readers. For some time now, US and its vassal states and Russia are engaged in an economic war. The first salvo was when VISA and MasterCard – which are US based banking institutions – were forced to stop accepting transactions performed by cardholders of certain Russian banks. The latest indication, as Saker has mentioned in the near past

Syrian War Report – December 29, 2017: Militant Defense Collapses Near Abu Dali

https://southfront.org/syrian-war-report-december-29-2017-militant-defense-collapses-near-abu-dali/ On December 28, government forces liberated the villages of Ad Dajaj, Tamat al-Khalifah and Mushayrifah and reached the southern vicinity of the militant-held village of Abu Dali. Abu Dali is controlled by Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly Jabhat al-Nusra, the Syrian branch of al-Qaeda) and is one of the key militant defense points in the area. If Abu Dali falls into the hands of the Syrian Arab Army (SAA), the

The petro-yuan bombshell

by Pepe Escobar (cross-posted with the Asia Times by special agreement with the author) The new 55-page “America First” National Security Strategy  (NSS), drafted over the course of 2017, defines Russia and China as “revisionist” powers, “rivals”, and for all practical purposes strategic competitors of the United States. The NSS stops short of defining Russia and China as enemies, allowing for an “attempt to build a great partnership with those

RT Television DARES to Challenge the French Intelligentsia!

by Phil Butler for the Saker blog Unprecedented, is the only word to describe the assault on the Russia Today (RT) networks abroad. The U.S. backed liberal world order has declared information jihad at a time when press freedom and truth have never been more vital. Today, let’s look at these “information terrorists” in France, and the role in the EU’s intelligentsia and ministry of truth. Just days after RTTV

Syrian-Iraqi War Report – December 20, 2017: Iran Deploys Reinforcemenst On Syrian-Iraqi Border

https://southfront.org/syrian-iraqi-war-report-december-20-2017-iran-deploys-reinforcemenst-on-syrian-iraqi-border/ Syrian government forces have continued to develop momentum in southern Idlib and liberated Tal Afghar from Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly Jabhat al-Nusra, the Syrian branch of al-Qaeda). Previously, government troops established control over Ruwaydah, Tall Khinzir, Zafaria, Shutaib and other points in the area. According to local sources, Hayat Tahrir al-Sham is now regrouping its forces and preparing to attack government forces in southern Idlib and southern Aleppo. Iranian-backed

Jerusalem – The Straw that Breaks the Empire’s Back?

by Peter Koenig for the Saker blog When President Trump on 6 December 2017 declared unilaterally Jerusalem as the capital of Israel to where the US Embassy shall relocate, he violated UN Resolutions, international law, common sense and went against all diplomatic efforts to eventually bring peace to the region, not to speak about 130 countries that have already voiced opposition to such a decision. And this, before the Peace

Syrian-Iraqi War Report – December 15, 2017: Syrian Army Tightens Siege On Beit Jinn Pocket

https://southfront.org/syrian-iraqi-war-report-december-15-2017-syrian-army-tightens-siege-on-beit-jinn-pocket/ The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and its allies have deployed a notable force for an operation against Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly Jabhat al-Nusra, the Syrian branch of al-Qaeda) in the province of Idlib. According to pro-government sources, the operation will involve the SAA, the Tiger Forces, the National Defense Forces (NDF), the 4th Armoured Division, the 8th Armored Division and the 11th Armored Division. In the first stage, the

The Costs of War: counted in TRILLIONS

by Phillyguy for the Saker blog Introduction The US came out of WWII as the world’s dominant military and economic power. Since that time, US hegemony has been predicated on: 1) unrivaled military strength, 2) control of world’s energy reserves and 3) primacy of the US dollar. US dominance has become increasingly threatened due to its continuing economic decline, a process that began in the mid-1970s as US corporate profits

Putin’s Syrian withdrawal announcement: an analysis

Putin’s Syrian withdrawal announcement: neither a full Russian withdrawal nor victory in Syria by Alexander Mercouris (cross-posted with The Duran by special agreement with the author) At a time when President Putin is undertaking a tour of the Middle East it would have been politically speaking extremely unwise for him not to have made a stop-over to meet the Russian troops at the Khmeimim air base whom Putin himself sent

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