Why ISIS terrorism? Mark Fiore animated cartoon


This video from the USA says about itself:

Who Created ISIS?

8 June 2015

With the fall of Ramadi in Iraq and Palmyra in Syria, fingers are pointing faster than you can say “Preemptive War.” John McCain thinks the crazy Islamic extremists of ISIS wouldn’t be causing the world all this trouble if only Obama hadn’t spent so much time worrying about global warming. Jeb Bush says Al Qaeda in Iraq was wiped out and ISIS didn’t exist when his dear ol’ brother was president. You can read more here.

I didn’t want democracy in Iraq, Rumsfeld confesses


Rumsfeld meets Saddam Hussein

The Iraq war of Tony Blair, George W Bush and his ‘defence Secretary’ Donald Rumsfeld was based on lies.

They said the war was because of ‘Iraqi weapons of mass destruction‘. Oops … a lie.

They said the war was because the Iraqi regime was guilty in the 9/11 attacks in the USA. Oops … another lie.

As the two other lies were exposed, the Bushist-Blairite apologists for the Iraq war changed their propaganda to a third issue: Saddam Hussein, they said, was a dictator, and they wanted to replace him by war with democracy.

That Saddam Hussein was a dictator had not been the slightest problem for Donald Rumsfeld when he had gone to Iraq as US government special envoy to shake hands with Saddam and to try to sell him more United States poison gas to kill more Iraqi Kurds.

Pretty soon, it became so obvious, in the torture cells of Abu Ghraib and elsewhere, in the disastrous fate of Iraqi women under Bush’s, Rumsfeld’s and Blair’s occupation, in the over a million people killed, in the over four million refugees etc. etc. that the Bushist-Blairite talk of democracy in Iraq was such a lie as well that the propagandists became fairly silent on it.

Earlier this year, Tony Blair went a step further. He said that he did not want democracy. Though that sounds, and is, pro-dictatorship, at least it was unusually honest for Blair, compared to his earlier lies.

Now, it seems that Donald Rumsfeld follows Blair’s example.

From daily The Guardian in Britain:

Donald Rumsfeld disavows original Iraq goals: ‘Democracy seemed unrealistic’

Former defense secretary who led US into 2003 invasion contradicted past statements in support of ‘model’ government in Times of London interview

Tom McCarthy in New York

Tuesday 9 June 2015 17.50 BST

Donald Rumsfeld, the secretary of defense who led the United States into the Iraq war, has told an interviewer that he did not think, at the time of the 2003 invasion, that building a democracy in Iraq was a realistic goal.

The statement contradicts speeches and memos that Rumsfeld, now 82, personally issued before and after the invasion of Iraq.

“The idea that we could fashion a democracy in Iraq seemed to me unrealistic,” Rumsfeld told the Times of London. “I was concerned about it when I first heard those words … I’m not one who thinks that our particular template of democracy is appropriate for other countries at every moment of their histories.”

The audience for Rumsfeld’s speech at the Council on Foreign Relations in May 2003, two months after the invasion, heard the opposite message. “This much is clear: we have a stake in their success,” Rumsfeld said then, referring to the people of Iraq.

“For if Iraq – with its size, capabilities, resources and its history – is able to move to the path of representative democracy, however bumpy the road, then the impact in the region and the world could be dramatic. Iraq could conceivably become a model – proof that a moderate Muslim state can succeed in the battle against extremism taking place in the Muslim world today.”

Rumsfeld also held up the prospect of Iraq as a “model” democracy behind the scenes. As a co-signatory of the statement of principles of the Project for a New American Century thinktank, Rumsfeld urged Bill Clinton to topple Saddam Hussein and called on the US to “accept responsibility for America’s unique role in preserving and extending an international order”. The statement is widely identified as a germ of what became known as the neoconservative theory of “democratic dominoes” in the Middle East.

Throughout the early Bush years, key Rumsfeld lieutenants were top purveyors of the dominoes theory. Paul Wolfowitz, a fellow member of the Project of the New American Century who served as deputy defense secretary in Rumsfeld’s Pentagon, predicted that Iraq would become the “first Arab democracy” that would “cast a very large shadow, starting with Syria and Iran, across the whole Arab world”.

George W Bush, under whom Rumsfeld served as defense secretary for six years, had scathing words in his 2004 state of the union address for anyone who doubted the project of Iraqi democracy. “We also hear doubts that democracy is a realistic goal for the greater Middle East, where freedom is rare,” Bush said.

“Yet it is mistaken and condescending to assume that whole cultures and great religions are incompatible with liberty and self-government. I believe that God has planted in every human heart the desire to live in freedom. And even when that desire is crushed by tyranny for decades, it will rise again.”

Recent months have seen an outbreak of former Iraq war apologists seeking to re-enter the public debate over Middle East policy. Other architects of the war, such as Wolfowitz and former national security adviser Stephen Hadley, have reportedly become foreign policy advisers to Jeb Bush, the [younger] brother of the former president and prospective 2016 presidential candidate.

Statements by Republican candidates in the 2016 presidential race indicate that the history of the Iraq war, and how it was lost, will be up for debate, especially with a Bush in the race. At his presidential announcement last week, former Texas governor Rick Perry called the withdrawal from Iraq “a national disgrace” and argued that the US had “won” the war in 2009 only to see the Obama administration squander its victory by leaving.

Rumsfeld’s Times interview also appeared to contradict earlier comments on military power in the Middle East.

In a July 2001 memo to then national security adviser Condoleezza Rice, Rumsfeld wrote: “Within a few years the US will undoubtedly have to confront a Saddam armed with nuclear weapons. Iran will almost certainly have a nuclear weapon sometime within the next five years, and that will change the balance in the region notably.”

In the Times interview, Rumsfeld said the US was in a “war of ideas”.

“You begin to look at this thing not like a war, but more like the cold war,” Rumsfeld said. “You’re not going to win this with bullets, you’re in a competition of ideas.”

USA: big business, dead soldiers and the Iraq war, cartoon

During an exchange in the House Armed Services Committee last Wednesday, US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter announced that the Obama administration was prepared to accept the break-up of Iraq as a unified national-state: here.

ISIS terrorism, with help from Washington D.C.


This video from the USA says about itself:

Covert cash: How did CIA money end up in al-Qaeda coffers?

15 March 2015

A New York Times investigation found that at least $1 million from the CIA wound up in the coffers of al-Qaeda in 2010. Matthew Rosenberg, a reporter for The New York Times, joins Hari Sreenivasan from Washington, D.C with more on the report.

From daily The Guardian in Britain:

Now the truth emerges: how the US fuelled the rise of Isis in Syria and Iraq

The sectarian terror group won’t be defeated by the western states that incubated it in the first place

Seumas Milne

Wednesday 3 June 2015 20.56 BST

The war on terror, that campaign without end launched 14 years ago by George Bush, is tying itself up in ever more grotesque contortions. On Monday the trial in London of a Swedish man, Bherlin Gildo, accused of terrorism in Syria, collapsed after it became clear British intelligence had been arming the same rebel groups the defendant was charged with supporting.

The prosecution abandoned the case, apparently to avoid embarrassing the intelligence services. The defence argued that going ahead with the trial would have been an “affront to justice” when there was plenty of evidence the British state was itself providing “extensive support” to the armed Syrian opposition.

That didn’t only include the “non-lethal assistance” boasted of by the government (including body armour and military vehicles), but training, logistical support and the secret supply of “arms on a massive scale”. Reports were cited that MI6 had cooperated with the CIA on a “rat line” of arms transfers from Libyan stockpiles to the Syrian rebels in 2012 after the fall of the Gaddafi regime.

Clearly, the absurdity of sending someone to prison for doing what ministers and their security officials were up to themselves became too much. But it’s only the latest of a string of such cases. Less fortunate was a London cab driver Anis Sardar, who was given a life sentence a fortnight earlier for taking part in 2007 in resistance to the occupation of Iraq by US and British forces. Armed opposition to illegal invasion and occupation clearly doesn’t constitute terrorism or murder on most definitions, including the Geneva convention.

But terrorism is now squarely in the eye of the beholder. And nowhere is that more so than in the Middle East, where today’s terrorists are tomorrow’s fighters against tyranny – and allies are enemies – often at the bewildering whim of a western policymaker’s conference call.

For the past year, US, British and other western forces have been back in Iraq, supposedly in the cause of destroying the hyper-sectarian terror group Islamic State (formerly known as al-Qaida in Iraq). This was after Isis overran huge chunks of Iraqi and Syrian territory and proclaimed a self-styled Islamic caliphate.

The campaign isn’t going well. Last month, Isis rolled into the Iraqi city of Ramadi, while on the other side of the now nonexistent border its forces conquered the Syrian town of Palmyra. Al-Qaida’s official franchise, the Nusra Front, has also been making gains in Syria.

Some Iraqis complain that the US sat on its hands while all this was going on. The Americans insist they are trying to avoid civilian casualties, and claim significant successes. Privately, officials say they don’t want to be seen hammering Sunni strongholds in a sectarian war and risk upsetting their Sunni allies in the Gulf.

A revealing light on how we got here has now been shone by a recently declassified secret US intelligence report, written in August 2012, which uncannily predicts – and effectively welcomes – the prospect of a “Salafist principality” in eastern Syria and an al-Qaida-controlled Islamic state in Syria and Iraq. In stark contrast to western claims at the time, the Defense Intelligence Agency document identifies al-Qaida in Iraq (which became Isis) and fellow Salafists as the “major forces driving the insurgency in Syria” – and states that “western countries, the Gulf states and Turkey” were supporting the opposition’s efforts to take control of eastern Syria.

Raising the “possibility of establishing a declared or undeclared Salafist principality”, the Pentagon report goes on, “this is exactly what the supporting powers to the opposition want, in order to isolate the Syrian regime, which is considered the strategic depth of the Shia expansion (Iraq and Iran)”.

Which is pretty well exactly what happened two years later. The report isn’t a policy document. It’s heavily redacted and there are ambiguities in the language. But the implications are clear enough. A year into the Syrian rebellion, the US and its allies weren’t only supporting and arming an opposition they knew to be dominated by extreme sectarian groups; they were prepared to countenance the creation of some sort of “Islamic state” – despite the “grave danger” to Iraq’s unity – as a Sunni buffer to weaken Syria.

That doesn’t mean the US created Isis, of course, though some of its Gulf allies certainly played a role in it – as the US vice-president, Joe Biden, acknowledged last year. But there was no al-Qaida in Iraq until the US and Britain invaded. And the US has certainly exploited the existence of Isis against other forces in the region as part of a wider drive to maintain western control.

The calculus changed when Isis started beheading westerners and posting atrocities online, and the Gulf states are now backing other groups in the Syrian war, such as the Nusra Front. But this US and western habit of playing with jihadi groups, which then come back to bite them, goes back at least to the 1980s war against the Soviet Union in Afghanistan, which fostered the original al-Qaida under CIA tutelage.

It was recalibrated during the occupation of Iraq, when US forces led by General Petraeus sponsored an El Salvador-style dirty war of sectarian death squads to weaken the Iraqi resistance. And it was reprised in 2011 in the Nato-orchestrated war in Libya, where Isis last week took control of Gaddafi’s home town of Sirte.

In reality, US and western policy in the conflagration that is now the Middle East is in the classic mould of imperial divide-and-rule. American forces bomb one set of rebels while backing another in Syria, and mount what are effectively joint military operations with Iran against Isis in Iraq while supporting Saudi Arabia’s military campaign against Iranian-backed Houthi forces in Yemen. However confused US policy may often be, a weak, partitioned Iraq and Syria fit such an approach perfectly.

What’s clear is that Isis and its monstrosities won’t be defeated by the same powers that brought it to Iraq and Syria in the first place, or whose open and covert war-making has fostered it in the years since. Endless western military interventions in the Middle East have brought only destruction and division. It’s the people of the region who can cure this disease – not those who incubated the virus.

Who Created ISIS? Satiric video by Mark Fiore from the USA: here.