Daily Archives: March 29, 2014

Leaked Audio Recording: Turkey Plans False Flag Attacks to Create Pretext for “Humanitarian” War on Syria

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In a devastating exposure of the criminality of the US-led proxy war in Syria, Turkish officials have been caught planning an attack on their own forces to manufacture a pretext to attack Syria.

This is the content of a leaked audio recording, posted to YouTube, of a meeting between top Turkish diplomats and intelligence officials, including Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu and Hakan Fidan, the head of Turkey’s National Intelligence Organization (MIT). At one point in the meeting, these officials discuss the possibility of organizing an attack from inside Syria across the Turkish-Syrian border, or on the Tomb of Suleiman Shah. Under the 1921 Treaty of Ankara between Turkey and France, then the colonial power in Syria, this tomb is a piece of sovereign Turkish territory inside Syria, guarded by Turkish forces.

Davutoglu says: “The prime minister said that in the current conjuncture, this attack [on Suleiman Shah Tomb] must be seen as an opportunity for us.”

Fidan replies: “I’ll send four men from Syria, if that’s what it takes. I’ll make up a cause of war by ordering a missile attack on Turkey. We can also prepare an attack on Suleiman Shah Tomb if necessary.”

Turkish officials responded to the leak by attempting to suppress it, banning access to YouTube inside Turkey. They did not contest the authenticity of the recording, however. Instead, in a speech in Diyarbakir, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan denounced the leaking of national security meetings as “immoral.”

The Turkish Foreign Ministry called the recording “partially manipulated” and a “wretched attack” on Turkish national security.

The leak is an unanswerable indictment of the war on Syria led by Washington and the European powers. Recklessly arming Islamist opposition militias linked to Al Qaeda in a semi-covert dirty war for regime-change in Damascus, the Western powers have devastated Syria and created fertile ground for the type of provocations exposed by the leak.

The leak provides evidence of a conspiracy to attack a state that has not attacked Turkey—implicating Turkey, a NATO member state, in crimes against peace, a violation of international law for which Nazi officials were hanged at Nuremburg after World War II.

In this, the conduct of the Erdogan regime is not substantially different from that of the leading NATO powers. A decade after Washington launched the 2003 war in Iraq based on lies about Iraqi weapons of mass destruction, it tried to launch a war with Syria based on false claims that the Syrian regime had used chemical weapons. NATO powers nearly attacked Syria on this pretext last September, even though similar accusations in May had fallen apart when UN officials stated that the poison gas had been used by the US-backed opposition.

Erdogan’s Islamist Justice and Development Party (AKP) is turning to military provocations as it considers attempting to rally internal support by launching a war. It faces sharp losses in communal elections tomorrow amid an economic and export slowdown driven by recession in Europe. It also confronts continuing protests over its repression of last year’s Gezi Park protests.

Tensions between the AKP and other sections of the ruling elite, including the army brass and the CIA-linked Islamist Gülen movement, are intensifying. Some reports suggest the leak was the result of spying operations within the Turkish state by the Gülen movement or its allies.

Erdogan’s foreign policy has become increasingly aggressive and incoherent. After the Egyptian revolution began, he abandoned his “zero problems with neighbors” policy and positioned the AKP as a model for an Islamist-led Middle East, backing the Syrian war despite its unpopularity in Turkey. This policy collapsed after last July’s US-backed coup in Egypt ousted Islamist President Mohamed Mursi, and Obama in September stepped back from military strikes against Syria.

The Western imperialist powers themselves have turned on the AKP, issuing various hypocritical criticisms of Erdogan, including over the Turkish military’s recent decision to shoot down a Syrian fighter jet. One European official told Al Monitor that it was part of a policy of backing Islamist opposition militias inside Syria, which he called “a stupid move by the Turkish side.”

“Turkey picked up the strategy of helping these radicals. This cannot be reversed now,” he told Al Monitor. “The bombing of the Syrian [MIG-23 fighter jet] was for helping these radicals.”

Since the Erdogan regime “picked up” the “stupid” strategy of arming Al Qaeda forces from the CIA, it only underscores the criminal character of NATO policy in Syria. NATO officials indicated that their main objection to Turkey’s moves to launch a war with Syria was that it would distract from their campaign to back the ultra-right regime they recently installed in Ukraine and isolate Russia.

A NATO source told Al Monitor: “In next week’s NATO foreign ministers meeting [on April 1 and 2]… I assume that people will directly share their concern with Minister Davutoglu over Turkish behavior. They will probably give the message that they do not want to be dragged into the Syrian quagmire while the Ukraine issue is keeping them busy at this stage.”

No one warned, however, of the vast and dire implications of a Turkish decision to launch a war with Syria. Such a war would threaten to escalate into a conflagration involving Turkey’s NATO allies and Syria’s main backers, Iran and Russia, as nearly happened last September.

Underlying this silence is the fact that, in Turkey as in the imperialist states, the ruling elites use war as a tool to divert attention from social and political tensions for which they see no solutions. This state of affairs was brought out particularly clearly by later passages in the leaked Turkish tape.

The undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Feridun Sinirlioglu, complains: “National security has been politicized… All talks we’ve done on defending our lands, our border security, our sovereign lands in there, they’ve all become a common, cheap domestic policy outfit.”

Later, another official adds: “Do even one of the opposition parties support you in such a high point of national security?… In what matter can we be unified, if not a matter of national security of such importance? None.”

As they discuss a major military escalation with unforeseeable consequences for Turkey and the world, the officials themselves seem deeply demoralized about the war in Syria and unclear on what they are trying to achieve. They describe the arming of Islamist opposition militias, a US-led strategy in which the Erdogan regime plays a major role, as a deadly threat to their own interests.

Sinirlioglu says: “There are some serious shifts in global and regional geopolitics… That ISIS [an Al Qaeda-linked opposition militia in Syria] and all that jazz, all those organizations are extremely open to manipulation. Having a region made up of organizations of a similar nature will constitute a vital security risk for us.”

Later on, Foreign Minister Davutoglu appears to complain that Turkey did not mount a major attack on Syria earlier: “The year 2012, we didn’t do it in 2011. If only we’d taken serious action back then, even in the summer of 2012.”

the video that got YouTube banned in Turkey


 

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Obama administration: U.S. and Saudi Arabia ‘very much aligned’

Obama meets with King Abdullah

The United States and Saudi Arabia are “very much aligned” despite recent policy differences over Iran and Syria, a senior U.S. official said following a meeting between President Barack Obama and King Abdullah.

Sitting down face to face with the King at his desert retreat, Rawdat Khuraim, outside the capital, Obama reiterated the United States is determined to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon.

Abdullah has raised concerns about the U.S.-led diplomatic effort along with major world powers to use negotiations to contain Tehran’s nuclear ambitions.

“There’s nothing like a face-to-face meeting,” a senior administration official told reporters, adding the discussion was “not contentious.” It was Obama’s first trip to Saudi Arabia since 2009.

The two leaders also discussed “tactical” differences with Saudi Arabia over the question of the arming of Syrian rebels.

A senior administration official denied published reports that the United States is considering supplying the opposition to Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad with surface-to-air missiles, also known as MANPADS.

Obama and Abdullah steered clear of international complaints of human rights abuses in Saudi Arabia. But a senior administration official announced Obama would attend a ceremony Saturday to recognize a Saudi woman with a State Department award for her efforts to combat domestic violence.

The 90-year-old King wore a breathing tube during his meeting with Obama. But a senior administration official said Abdullah appeared in good health and sustaining a “serious discussion” of the issues.

Obama, who was joined in the meeting by Secretary of State John Kerry and National Security Adviser Susan Rice, returns to Washington on Saturday.

via Obama administration: U.S. and Saudi Arabia ‘very much aligned’ | FOX2now.com.

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Earth Hour : Millions switch off lights around the globe to raise funds for green projects

A combination picture shows St. Basil's Cathedral before (R) and during Earth Hour in Moscow March 29, 2014.

A combination picture shows St. Basil’s Cathedral before (R) and during Earth Hour in Moscow March 29, 2014.

Millions of people from at least 150 countries all over the world are switching off their lights to celebrate a symbolic holiday, known as Earth Hour, which this year aims to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for environmental projects.

The lights dim on Saturday between 1630 GMT and 1730 GMT under the slogan “Use your Power” in some 7,000 cities all over the world.

“It’s a brilliant reminder that together we can make change happen. …It’s a moment to say you’ll do your bit to protect our planet – not just for one hour, but every day,” said a statement on the official website of the Earth Hour that leads countdown.

 This combo of pictures shows the Bulgarian National Theatre with the lights on (L) and with the lights off (R), as part of the Earth Hour in Sofia on March 23, 20

 

The United States will see the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, Times Square and the Empire State building in New York switching off their lights to commemorate a symbolic holiday. Even some of the hotels and casinos in Las Vegas will be turning off their displays.

Almost 4,000 candles will spell “Lights out for the Reef” at Parliament House in Canberra, Australia as the activists are trying to attract the world attention to the problem of the Great Barrier Reef, which is highly affected by climate change.

“For us the symbolism or turning your lights off will always be important,” says Earth Hour’s CEO and co-founder, Andy Ridley, “That’s the holy grail for us – building a global collective movement, far beyond the event, where the event becomes a kind of inspiration but the movement is really the essence of it.”

The United Nations is among the organizations which will participate in the symbolic action according to the UN official website, it “is going the extra mile and turning off all non- essential lights within the UN complex in New York for three hours.” The HQs in Geneva, Switzerland and other locations will also become dark.

“I look forward to joining you on March 29 as we switch off our lights for one hour – and switch on to a cleaner, greener future, “ UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said on Friday in a video message for the opening of the WWF office in Seoul, South Korea.

Meanwhile, Ridley says that the Earth Hour is not about going back to the dark ages. The whole event shows “an idea that you as an individual can do something.”

“It is an excuse to lean over the garden fence and talk to your neighbor or a reason for people to talk to each other at a restaurant, so I never underestimate the power of that symbolism,” he said.

Earth Hour was first launched in Australia in 2007 and since then has grown to become the world’s biggest environmental event encouraging people to rethink the issues from deforestation to energy efficiency.

According to WWF, which supports the campaign, Earth Hour helped several countries to introduce new legislations. Thanks to Earth Hour campaign Argentina passed a senate bill to create a new 3.4 million-hectare marine reserve in 2013 while Uganda planted half a million trees in an “Earth Hour forest” to stop deforestation.

RT News.

 

 

 

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