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Liz Sly – 10 new wars that could be unleashed as a result of the one against ISIS

The borders of the Islamic State’s “caliphate” are shrinking fast. The group’s strongholds in Iraq and Syria are collapsing one by one. The U.S.-led war has reached a point where questions are being raised about what comes next. So far, the answer seems likely to be: more war. That’s partly because the U.S. strategy for defeating the Islamic State relies …

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America’s Foreign Policy in Syria Summed Up in 3 Headlines

US foreign policy regarding Syria publicly vacillates between seeking to defeat the Islamic State to achieving regime change in Damascus. Even at face value, these two objectives are contradictory, even paradoxical. Overthrowing the government of Libya in 2011 thrust extremist groups (used by the US to overthrow Tripoli in the first place) into power across the nation, leaving it bitterly …

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Daniel Lazare – US Hawks Advance a War Agenda in Syria

War, like politics, is filled with surprises. While the focus in Syria has been on a U.S.-backed rebel offensive in Aleppo that has succeeded in turning tables on Bashar al-Assad’s government, a new and unexpected flashpoint has developed 200-plus miles to the east where U.S. jets are engaged in a dangerous showdown with Syrian warplanes near the city of Hasakah. The …

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Tim Radford – Scientists link conflict and climate change

LONDON, 17 August, 2015 − Ethnic conflict linked to tragic episodes of civil war, waves of refugees and even the collapse of nation states could be made more likely by climate-related disasters. A team of European scientists say they can demonstrate, “in a scientifically sound way”, a link between civil violence based on ethnic divisions, and episodes of drought, intense heat or other …

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Mish Shedlock – Russia Masses Troops on Crimea Border; Ukraine Warns Russian Invasion Possible “At Any Minute”

  The situation in Ukraine is heating up again. In the past few days, numerous article discuss a Russian military buildup on the Crimea-Ukraine border. The Irish Times offers this sensational headline: Ukraine Claims Russian Invasion Possible ‘At Any Minute’. Ukraine has claimed that a Russian invasion is possible “at any minute”, amid reports that Moscow’s troops and armour were on the move …

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ROBERT FISK – The Sultan and the Tsar: Erdogan Travels to Russia

So the Sultan travels to see the Tsar at the royal seat of St Petersburg. And the Caliph of Damascus will watch from Syria with the conviction that Ba’ath Party policy has once again proved its worth. The policy? Wait. And wait. And wait. For just as Turkey’s power over Syria – its Pakistan-like role of conduit for Arab Gulf money and arms to the civil war, its smuggling routes to Isis, al-Qaeda (or Jabhat al-Nusra or Fatah el-Sham …

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Thomas Gaist – Washington Escalates Covert Backing for Al Qaeda Militias in Aleppo

US-backed militias fighting against the Syrian government of Bashar al Assad have broken through the Russian and Syrian government encirclement of their positions inside the war-ravaged northern Syrian city of Aleppo, according to Western media. During fierce battles over the weekend, the US-backed, Islamist-led militia coalition known as Jaysh al Fateh overran military bases in southwest Aleppo and secured an …

An image released on July 28, 2016 by Al-Manara al-Bayda, the official news arm of Al-Nusra Front, Al-Qaeda's Syrian affiliate, allegedly shows the group's chief Abu Mohammad al-Jolani at an undisclosed location, in the first ever picture to be released of him.
The Al-Nusra Front - which is expected to announce its break from Al-Qaeda - is a jihadist group allied with rebels fighting Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad. Al-Nusra, an offshoot of the Islamic State in Iraq, Al-Qaeda's former Iraqi affiliate, first emerged in January 2012 -- 10 months after the start of anti-government protests that were brutally repressed by the Assad regime, leading to a multi-sided conflict which continues today. The Arabic writing reads: "Soon, a televised speech by Sheikh Abu Mohammad al-Jolani.” / AFP PHOTO / Al-Manara Al-Baydaa / Handout

Gareth Porter – The sham rebrand of al-Qaeda’s Nusra Front

The Nusra Front’s adoption of the new name Jabhat Fateh al-Sham and claim that it has separated itself from al-Qaeda was designed to influence US policy, not to make the group any more independent of al-Qaeda. The objective of the manoeuvre was to head off US-Russian military cooperation against the jihadist group, renamed last week, based at least in part on the …

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Resistance Radio – Dahr Jamail – 07.31.16

Dahr Jamail is an award winning journalist and author who is a full-time staff reporter for Truthout.org. His work is currently focusing on Anthropogenic Climate Disruption. Today we talk about the murder of the oceans. Download this episode (right click and save)