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Leid Stories—Trump and Assad, Both On the Brink—04.06.17

President Donald Trump vowed yesterday to take some kind of “responsibility” for helping to bring the murderous chaos in war-torn Syria to an end. What that “responsibility” would be, Trump wouldn’t say, but he made it clear the task was President Barack Obama’s and Obama did nothing.

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Trends This Week – Hypocrisy and stalled economies – 04.05.17

The devastating gas attacks against Syrian civilians have made headlines and cover stories everywhere, fueling American hatred and giving rise to more war propaganda against Syria. The media, however, is silent on the ongoing airstrikes that have killed hundreds of civilians in Mosul. Meanwhile, the business-media world continues to boast of a growing economy that seems to be falling short under President Trump as he cannot keep his economic promises.

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Gareth Porter – Pushing for a Lucrative New Cold War

Airstrikes by the United States and its allies against two Syrian army positions Sept. 17 killed at least 62 Syrian troops and wounded dozens more. The attack was quickly treated as a non-story by the U.S. news media; U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) claimed the strikes were carried out in the mistaken belief that Islamic State forces were being targeted, and the …

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Robert Fisk – There Is More Than One Truth to Tell in the Awful Story of Aleppo

estern politicians, “experts” and journalists are going to have to reboot their stories over the next few days now that Bashar al-Assad’s army has retaken control of eastern Aleppo. We’re going to find out if the 250,000 civilians “trapped” in the city were indeed that numerous. We’re going to hear far more about why they were not able to leave …

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Syria war death toll now more than 300,000: monitor

Beirut (AFP) – More than 300,000 people have been killed in the Syrian conflict since March 2011, a monitor said in a new toll Tuesday, the first full day of an internationally-brokered truce. More than 86,000 civilians were among the 301,781 people killed, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said. The civilian toll includes 15,099 children and 10,018 women, the …

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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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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 …

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Patrick Cockburn – What is Russia Doing in Syria?

The military balance of power in Syria and Iraq is changing. The Russian air strikes that have been taking place since the end of September are strengthening and raising the morale of the Syrian army, which earlier in the year looked fought out and was on the retreat. With the support of Russian airpower, the army is now on the …

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Gareth Porter – Why the U.S. Owns the Rise of Islamic State and the Syria Disaster

Pundits and politicians are already looking for a convenient explanation for the twin Middle East disasters of the rise of Islamic State and the humanitarian catastrophe in Syria. The genuine answer is politically unpalatable, because the primary cause of both calamities is U.S. war and covert operations in the Middle East, followed by the abdication of U.S. power and responsibility …