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Tag: Syria

Gaza rubble
AP photo / Khaled Omar

Why Do So Few Speak Up for Gaza?

Why is it that there is such widespread acceptance, beginning with the apologetic arguments of President Bush, that whatever Israel does is always justified as necessary to the survival of the Jewish state? It is not.

Posted on Jan 6, 2009 READ MORE


Why Obama Can Keep Gates

If the prospect of appointing Hillary Clinton as secretary of state irritates the Obama base, what will they make of keeping the man who has executed President Bush’s policies at the Pentagon?

Posted on Nov 20, 2008 READ MORE



U.S. Air Force / Staff Sgt. Aaron Allmon

Secret Rumsfeld Order OK’d Raids in All Nations

Since 2004, U.S. operatives have been crossing the borders of friends and foes alike in a secret global hunt for al-Qaida. According to a bombshell report in The New York Times, a dozen or so raids have been conducted in Syria, Pakistan and elsewhere since Donald Rumsfeld issued a secret order with the backing of the president.

Posted on Nov 10, 2008 READ MORE


‘What Happens in Syria Stays in Syria’

The Mosaic Intelligence Report investigates whether the recent U.S. attack in Syria was motivated by John McCain’s sagging polls.

Posted on Nov 2, 2008 READ MORE


Syria Raid
latimes.com

Did Syria OK U.S. Attack?

While President Bush may not be too keen on diplomacy with U.S. “enemies,” talks of a military nature might be more his cup of tea. An Israeli intelligence expert says that Sunday’s U.S. attack inside Syrian territory may have been the result of a covert agreement between the two states to kill an al-Qaida operative.

Posted on Oct 29, 2008 READ MORE



goarmy.com

U.S. Attack in Syria Kills 8

Syrian authorities have demanded to know why U.S. forces crossed the Iraq-Syria border and killed eight people. A U.S. official said the raid—the first ever on Syrian soil—targeted foreign fighters. Damascus said the dead were Syrian civilians.

Posted on Oct 26, 2008 READ MORE


The Cost of Saakashvili’s Folly

The West’s response to the situation in Georgia evades acknowledgement of the damage Georgia’s President Mikheil Saakashvili has done to the United States and NATO, and to Georgia itself, which for the foreseeable future will now be a nation of limited sovereignty, and an awkward embarrassment to its Western allies.

Posted on Aug 26, 2008 READ MORE


ENTER_ALT_TEXT

Film Gets Up Close With Iraqi Refugees

Two million Iraqis are living as refugees in Syria and Jordan, and the U.S. seems to be doing nothing to help the vast majority of them despite occupying their country while posing as a savior. A new film, “The Hard Way Home,” produced by the BBC to give faces to that depressing number, is available on YouTube in six parts. Here is the first.

Posted on Aug 14, 2008 READ MORE


Syria Succeeds by Doing Nothing

Without a shot being fired, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has ensured that anyone who wants anything in the Middle East has got to talk to Syria. He’s done nothing—and he’s won.

Posted on Aug 3, 2008 READ MORE


Israel’s Olmert to Hang It Up

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, beset by accusations of corruption and bribery, announced Wednesday that he will resign after an internal Kadima Party election to choose a new leader on Sept. 17.

Posted on Jul 30, 2008 READ MORE


Educating the U.S. About the Middle East

“You in the West have a moral duty in Europe to educate the United States more about the Middle East. If they don’t listen to you, they will not listen to us. They will continue with their mistakes.” I don’t think they’re going to listen, I mutter.

Posted on Jul 15, 2008 READ MORE


Sudan crash
bbc.co.uk

Dozens Killed in Sudan Plane Crash

A Sudan Airways passenger jet carrying around 200 people crashed while landing at the Khartoum airport late Tuesday, skidding off the runway during stormy weather, catching fire and splitting in half. Dozens of people on the craft were reported killed after earlier estimates placed the toll much higher.

Posted on Jun 10, 2008 READ MORE


MIR May 23 report

Two Mideast Peace Stories, for a Change

The Mosaic Intelligence Report looks at two welcome developments in the Middle East: On Wednesday, Israel and Syria said they had begun indirect talks in Turkey, the first confirmation in eight years of negotiations between the long-time enemies. On that same day, the Gulf state of Qatar scored a diplomatic coup by pulling off a deal intended to end Lebanon’s protracted crisis.

Posted on May 23, 2008 READ MORE


flags
commons.wikimedia.org

Israel and Syria Talk Peace

The politically weakened government of Ehud Olmert is engaged in peace talks with neighboring Syria, the two countries have acknowledged. Turkey is moderating the indirect negotiations, the first since 2000. The last round of talks failed over the demand for Israeli withdrawal from the Golan Heights.

Posted on May 21, 2008 READ MORE


MIR report

Syria: Nukes or Peace?

This past week, Syria made headlines not once but twice. One story implicates the country in enriching uranium and says that the CIA confirmed to Congress that the target of a mysterious Israeli air raid in northern Syria on Sept. 6, 2007, was a reactor built with North Korean help.

Posted on Apr 27, 2008 READ MORE


Golan Heights
flickr.com / John Barnabas

Israel Reportedly Ready to Return Golan

“Informed sources” say the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, a historically contested area between Israel and Syria, may soon find itself under new management. The two countries, which have been at war with each other since 1973, are both looking to resume the stalled 2000 peace talk process, which Syria has declared will not happen until the Golan Heights are returned.

Posted on Apr 23, 2008 READ MORE


Iraqi refugees

Mosaic: What Petraeus Didn’t Tell Us

The latest “Mosaic Intelligence Report” takes a look at the “massive humanitarian crisis” that Gen. David Petraeus and Ambassador Ryan Crocker failed to address in their update meetings with Congress about the Iraq war.

Posted on Apr 12, 2008 READ MORE


Protest in Sadr City
AP photo / Karim Kadim

Iraq Exploding as Shiite Fights Shiite

A new civil war may be looming in Iraq as American-backed Iraqi government forces battle Shiite militiamen for control of Basra and parts of Baghdad.

Posted on Mar 27, 2008 READ MORE


Jolie in Iraq
AP photo / U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Lorie Jewell

Angelina Jolie: Now’s the Time to Help Iraqis

For those inclined to ask “who cares?” every time a celebrity-and-politics news item makes the rounds, consider it asked already. For everyone else, The Washington Post published an opinion piece by actress Angelina Jolie on Thursday about the problem of Iraqi refugees fleeing to Syria, Jordan and “a vast and very dangerous no-man’s land” within their own borders. Now, Jolie says, is the time for Americans to “do some of the good we always stated we intended to do.”

Posted on Feb 28, 2008 READ MORE


The Grown-Ups Never Showed Up

The ascension of George W., according to many Bush loyalists, was a return of mature and wise foreign policy.  Tell that to the ailing Middle East, whose future is now being pondered in a U.S. meeting that seems destined to fail.

Posted on Nov 28, 2007 READ MORE


A Lesson in Courage From Beirut

Not only is The Independent reporter Fisk, like many others in Beirut, no longer shocked by a murder of yet another member of parliament, but he also is no longer affected by viewing the remains of the dead.  Such is life in Lebanon today.  Here, Fisk relates how Lebanese officials are learning to exist in a perpetual fog of fear.

Posted on Oct 1, 2007 READ MORE


Lebanese Government on Verge of Collapse

Another member of Lebanon’s parliament, Antoine Ghanem, was killed on Sept. 19 when a bomb went off in his car outside his home in Beirut. This means, The Independent’s Robert Fisk reports, that ” ... It only takes one more murder for the democratically elected government of Lebanon to fall.”

Posted on Sep 21, 2007 READ MORE


North Korea Denies Sharing Nukes

The North Korean government has denied allegations that it shared nuclear technology with Syria. A senior U.S. nuclear official earlier insisted that North Koreans were in Syria, possibly to supply the latter with illicit equipment.

Posted on Sep 18, 2007 READ MORE


Syria Fires on Israeli Jets

Ramping up already escalating tensions between the two nations, Syrian military officials claimed Thursday that Israeli warplanes violated Syrian airspace in the wee hours of the morning, prompting Syrian air defense forces to open fire until the planes turned around—an account Israel has yet to confirm or deny.

Posted on Sep 6, 2007 READ MORE


Tensions Build Between U.S., Iraqi Leaders

The Iraqi prime minster is now under attack from leading U.S. politicians.  Even President Bush is distancing himself.  As Nouri al-Maliki turns to find “friends elsewhere”—in Syria, which he is visiting, and in Iran, with which he has close ties—will he come to be viewed as yet another monster we created? 

Posted on Aug 22, 2007 READ MORE


displaced Iraqis
news.bbc.co.uk

If We Ever ‘Stabilize’ Iraq, Will Anybody Still Live There?

According to the U.N., roughly 50,000 Iraqis flee their homeland each month, bringing the total of refugees so far to over 2 million—in addition to the 2 million displaced within Iraq. The United States, for its part, has welcomed just 133 Iraqi refugees over the last nine months.

Posted on Jul 26, 2007 READ MORE


More Insufficiently Grateful Iraqis

More bad news for the more than 2 million Iraqis who have fled their occupied country: The Bush administration, after admitting fewer than 800 Iraqi refugees into the U.S. in the first three years of the occupation, has failed miserably to follow through on its promise to admit 7,000 more by the end of September.

Posted on Jul 9, 2007 READ MORE


Bush Breaks Neocon Taboo

For a brief moment on Memorial Day, the U.S. and Iran set aside decades of hostility to meet and talk. That short rendezvous, although upsetting to neoconservative warmongers and their nefarious plans, holds real promise for American security and prosperity.

Posted on May 30, 2007 READ MORE



news.bbc.co.uk

At Least 40 Dead in Lebanon Skirmish

At least 40 people have been killed during a day of intense fighting between the Lebanese army and Fatah Islam, a splinter Palestinian militant group in Lebanon.

Posted on May 20, 2007 READ MORE


Rice Meets With Syrian Counterpart

A senior State Department official has confirmed that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice met with her Syrian counterpart at an ongoing conference in Egypt. The two were expected to discuss Iraq’s security. Iran, too, has expressed interest in such a meeting, but when asked about that possibility earlier this week President Bush said simply that his top diplomat would not be rude to Iran’s foreign minister.

Posted on May 3, 2007 READ MORE


Lieberman

Lieberman Bashes Pelosi

For a guy who says he’s a Democrat, Joe Lieberman doesn’t show much party loyalty. The senator took a break from defending Bush and his war on Sunday to pile on the criticism of Nancy Pelosi’s trip to Syria. Luckily Arlen Specter, a Republican no less, was on hand to defend the logic of diplomacy.

Posted on Apr 8, 2007 READ MORE


pelosi
AP

Truthdigger of the Week:  Nancy Pelosi

Truthdig tips its hat this week to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, who drew criticism from the Bush administration for meeting with Middle Eastern officials, including Syria’s president and members of Saudi Arabia’s advisory council.

Posted on Apr 7, 2007 READ MORE


The Enemy of My Enemy…

Share
Posted on Apr 5, 2007 READ MORE


pelosi
AP

Two Wins for Diplomacy

The British government has successfully negotiated the release of the 15 sailors held for nearly two weeks in Iran.  Meawhile, over in Damascus, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has made major headway in promoting peace in the Middle East in her meetings with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Posted on Apr 4, 2007 READ MORE


Pelosi
news.bbc.co.uk

Bush Still Fuming Over Pelosi Diplomacy

The White House has continued to criticize House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for visiting Syria, while ignoring an earlier trip by a Republican congressional delegation. The speaker’s office maintains that it is worth meeting with “every country that has an interest in avoiding a chaotic Iraq.”

Posted on Apr 4, 2007 READ MORE


Pelosi and Assad
Left: CNN.com / Right: wikipedia.org

Pelosi Goes Over Bush’s Head

Over the president’s objections, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi plans to visit the president of Syria next weekend. Pelosi’s spokesman said the meeting was inspired by the Iraq Study Group, which recommended engaging regional players—a recommendation the Bush administration has so far ignored.

Posted on Mar 30, 2007 READ MORE


The Not So Silent Majority

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Posted on Mar 4, 2007 READ MORE


U.S. Will Attend Meeting With Iran and Syria

Despite ramping up its verbal attacks on Iran and Syria, the U.S. will participate in a conference in Iraq next month that will include the two regional powers. A State Department spokesman said he would not “exclude any particular interaction” with the diplomatic foes.

Posted on Feb 27, 2007 READ MORE


Bush sad
sptimes.com

U.S. Invitation to Iraq Summit Lost in the Mail

The Iraqi government has invited Bush administration antagonists Iran and Syria to Baghdad for security talks, which might also include the Arab League and the United Nations. The United States has not received an invitation.

Posted on Feb 2, 2007 READ MORE


Joe Conason: Our Iraqi Friends Befriend Our Enemies

Should the United States attack Iran, which side would the Iraqi government support? The answer to that simple question is far from clear, despite the thousands of lives and billions of dollars we have sacrificed to support the ruling coalition in Baghdad.

Posted on Jan 18, 2007 READ MORE


Tehran shoppers
Resse Erlich

Iranians Skeptical About U.S.-Tehran Dialogue

Award-winning journalist Reese Erlich discovers that everyday Iranians favor talks between America and Tehran, but most think the negotiations will amount to little more than window dressing.

Posted on Dec 19, 2006 READ MORE


Beirut demonstrations
news.yahoo.com

Lebanon on the Brink

Hezbollah has threatened an escalation in its campaign against Lebanese Prime Minister Fuad Saniora unless he resigns.  Hundreds of thousands of Hezbollah supporters took to the streets on Sunday, but Christian and Sunni leaders appear unlikely to bow to the pressure.

Posted on Dec 11, 2006 READ MORE


Reese Erlich
Courtesy Reese Erlich

Kleptocracy, Theocracy (and Democracy) in the Middle East

Investigative reporter Reese Erlich, just back from a tour of the Middle East, tells Truthdig that the U.S. efforts to promote democracy in that part of the world are beset by religious fundamentalists on one side and unabashed kleptocrats on the other.

Posted on Dec 8, 2006 READ MORE


Israeli PM on Iraq Report

Responding to the Iraq Study Group report on Thursday, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said talks with Syria were not possible, and that President Bush wasn’t interested in speaking to Damascus either: “I can only say that the opinions I heard from the president and from all senior administration staff on the Syrian issue are such that he did not see a feasibility in talks….”

Posted on Dec 7, 2006 READ MORE


Joe Conason: From Gates, Belated Truths About Iraq

If nothing else can be said for Robert Gates, he seems to have learned that the appearance of honesty is preferable to blatant attempts at deception.

Posted on Dec 7, 2006 READ MORE


Joe Conason: Time to Face Facts in Iraq

Bush made his bed with the Iraq quagmire. Now he has to deal with the consequences: diplomacy with Iran and Syria.

Posted on Nov 30, 2006 READ MORE


Bush and Maliki
huffingtonpost.com

An Awkward Rendezvous

President Bush is set to travel to Jordan next week for a meeting with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.  The event might be a bit uncomfortable for the pair, now that the Iraqi government has responded to the flirtations of Iran and Syria.

Posted on Nov 22, 2006 READ MORE


Dennis Kucinich
AP / Lee Marriner

Rep. Dennis Kucinich: Cut Off Iraq War Funding

In a Truthdig interview, Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) reacts to Rep. John Murtha’s failed bid for House majority leader, and explains why cutting off funding for the Iraq war is the only way to truly protect American troops.

Posted on Nov 16, 2006 READ MORE


America Is Doing Such a Good Job in Iraq That…

The Iraqi president says Syria and Iran need to pitch in to stabilize the country.

Posted on Oct 17, 2006 READ MORE


Syrians Repel Attack on U.S. Embassy

Armed Islamic militants, believed to be members of an Al Qaeda-linked group, brazenly stormed the U.S. Embassy in Damascus. The attackers didn’t breach the walls, and three of them were killed, along with a Syrian counter-terror officer.
This comes at a time of heightened U.S.-Syrian tensions over America’s support for Israel in its fight against Lebanon.

Posted on Sep 12, 2006 READ MORE


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