Trump Backs Off From Ongoing Public Yemen Genocide

-Yemen, a War for Profit, Saudi Genocide Backed by Obama to Trump. We are bombing Yemen back into the stone age, starving kids & blockading the nation.

-In a speech he delivered in commemoration of the killing of the Houthi movement’s founder, the movement’s current leader said: “everything that is happening in our region serves the Zionists.”

-The sabotage of the bank, which left millions of public employees and the extreme poor with no income, was done with permission and in close collaboration with the World Bank and the ‘Quad Group’, US, Saudi, UAE and UK governments ( www.irispdf), as a continuation from an earlier funds blockade and with full knowledge of the genocidal consequences.

-An American bomb made by Lockheed Martin struck a Yemen school bus recently, killing 51 people. Earlier, American bombs killed 155 mourners at a funeral and 97 people at a market.

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Ann Arbor (Informed Comment) Secretary of Defense James Mattis and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo have abruptly called for an end to the Saudi-backed quagmire in Yemen, after years of backing the war over alleged Iranian involvement.

Speaking at the Congressionally mandated US Institute for Peace on Tuesday, Mattis said according to the BBC that Washington had been watching the Yemen war “for long enough.” He added, “We have got to move towards a peace effort here, and we can’t say we are going to do it sometime in the future. We need to be doing this in the next 30 days.” He said all sides should to meet with UN special envoy Martin Griffiths in Sweden.

Mr Mattis added that all sides should meet UN special envoy Martin Griffiths in Sweden in November and “come to a solution.”

Pompeo asked the Houthi government of north Yemen to cease its rocket attacks on Saudi Arabia and urged the Saudis to stop bombing populated areas from the air.

Pompeo said, “It is time to end this conflict, replace conflict with compromise, and allow the Yemeni people to heal through peace and reconstruction . . .”

How to explain this American initiative on Yemen? Well, it is very murky and unexpected but here are some considerations that may have led to this Trump admin. about-face:

1. The murder of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the Istanbul Saudi consulate on Oct. 2 has much weakened the Saudi government, so that the US and France and others may now see this moment as a prime one for pressuring Riyadh.

2. The UN is now warning of an enormous die-off in Yemen of millions of people if the war continues at its present pace. No administration wants that sort of catastrophe to come about on its watch, more especially if it is itself partially responsible for the starvation.

3. There could be a massive refugee exodus across the Red Sea and up to Europe. France is also pressuring Riyadh to end the war.

4. The administration may anticipate losing the House of Representatives to the Democrats next Tuesday. Prominent Dems have already introduced resolutions for the US to get out of Yemen. This congressional pressure is likely to be much strengthened if the Dems are in a position to launch investigations and subpoena officials.

5. The Khashoggi murder made the Saudis abruptly disliked by even the Republican rank and file, and the administration may fear that their being joined at the hips with Riyadh may play poorly in the upcoming midterms.

6. US intelligence may have finally gotten through to Mattis and Pompeo that the Houthis are an indigenous protest movement and not actually very tied to Iran, which practices a different form of Shiism and has other regional priorities.

But to tell you the truth, I find this sudden coordinated maneuver on Yemen among the Trump high officials to be a little baffling and there may be more factors driving it than are apparent on the surface. One thing is certain, they aren’t doing it for their health.

Iran: Saudi Arabia Would Not Have Murdered Khashoggi Without [Zio] U.S. Protection


Sheikh Imran Hosein on Saudi regime Analysis

haaretz.com Oct 24, 2018

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday that Saudi Arabia would not have murdered prominent journalist Jamal Khashoggi without American protection, according to the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA).

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Tuesday Saudi authorities staged the “worst cover-up ever” in the killing of Khashoggi in Turkey this month, as the United States vowed to revoke the visas of some of those believed to be responsible.

“No one would imagine that in today’s world and a new century that we would witness such an organised murder and a system would plan out such a heinous murder,” Rouhani said, according to IRNA.

“I don’t think that a country would dare commit such a crime without the protection of America.”

U.S. protection has allowed Saudi Arabia to carry out bombings against civilians in Yemen’s war, Rouhani said, according to IRNA.

“If there was no American protection, would the people of Yemen still have faced the same brutal bombing?” Rouhani said.

Rouhani also called on Turkey’s government to conduct an impartial investigation into Khashoggi’s “unprecedented” murder.

The Saudis are so Ashkenazi

Saudi media reported that more than 12,000 Yemenis — 10,371 men and 2,078 women — are currently being held in detention centers across the Kingdom.

During the deportation process, they are often subject to physical and psychological abuse including beatings, rape and reportedly even the theft of their organs. The abuse often comes not just from authorities but at the hands of their sponsors (Kafeel) who enjoy vast legal rights over those they employ.

Saudi Arabia did give the now jobless masses of Yemeni deportees one option for employment: forgo training and become mercenaries for the coalition waging a bloody war against their homeland. Offering few options save starvation, Saudi Arabia capitalized on the deportees’ desperation by turning former shopkeepers into soldiers tasked with protecting Saudi troops in Jizan, Asir, and Najran from attacks by Yemen’s military. Saudi Arabia’s regular forces, equipped with the latest U.S.-supplied weapons, tend to stay far from the front lines.

Another Front in Saudi War: Kingdom Deports Yemeni Workers to Face Starvation at “Home”

Last year, Saudi Arabia, under Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, rolled out a new “Saudization” policy in which Yemenis were forced to pay residency fees or face deportation, pricing out millions who came to the Kingdom from neighboring states seeking a better life in the wealthy Gulf monarchy. Many of them were born in Saudi Arabia, the children or grandchildren of migrants from Yemen.

Unable to secure Saudi citizenship, owing to a policy that reserves citizenship for those of Saudi descent, most were unable to attend school and were denied any form of government aid, including healthcare. Experts estimate that at least two million Yemenis remain in Saudi Arabia and are at risk of deportation.

Saudi authorities say that Yemenis make up the majority of migrants in Saudi Arabia — around 77 percent, followed by Ethiopians at 22 percent. On March 29, 2017, Saudi officials set a three-month deadline Saudi residents of Yemeni descent to leave the Kingdom or risk fines and other legal measures, a policy that echoes Israel’s controversial policy towards migrants and refugees, which has drawn the ire of activists and human-rights groups alike. At 100 Saudi riyals a month, or $27 U.S. dollars, the fees are often out of reach for migrant workers. By the time fees reach 400 riyals in 2020, few will be able to afford them.

Refugees as a bargaining chip

Beyond the thin veil of “Saudization,” the Kingdom’s vulnerable non-Saudi population has frequently found itself at the whim of the royal family, often used as a political card to pressure foreign governments to cede to Saudi interests.

In 2013, according to high-ranking officials in Sana’a, the Saudi regime expelled some 360,000 Yemeni workers from the kingdom after Yemen’s government under former President Ali Saleh signaled that Yemen would begin to develop oil from the country’s al-Jawf Governorate, a resource long sought by Saudi Arabia.

Yemen’s governorates of al-Jawf, Shabwa, and Marib have a high potential for significant gas deposits, and according to a detailed 2002 United States Geological Survey (USGS), Yemen possesses vast offshore oil reservoirs in addition to its 3 billion barrels of proven reserves.

That wasn’t the first time the Kingdom used foreign nationals as a means to achieve policy objectives. In 1990 Saudi Arabia expelled well over one million Yemeni workers after Yemen’s government rejected the U.S. war on Iraq. The sudden influx of people returning to the country created an economic crisis that contributed to the onset of the civil war between the north and the south in 1994.

As many economic experts have observed, Yemeni economist Rashid al-Haddad told MintPress that he thinks Saudi Arabia will indeed expel more Yemenis that remain in the Kingdom if Saudi officials do not get what they want out of negotiations or peace talks with Yemen.

The impact of deportation is profound

While Saudi Arabia’s role in the scorched-earth campaign that has decimated Yemen since 2015 is finally beginning to make headlines, its economic war against the country is often overlooked.  Utilizing a cadre of devastating strategies — including a land, sea and air blockade; the destruction of infrastructure; the devaluing of currency through carefully-planned economic policy; and preventing Yemen from developing its natural wealth — the Saudi-led and U.S.-backed coalition has brought the country to the brink of total collapse. Now, with an influx of new residents seeking a share of the war-torn country’s meager resources, Yemen, already plagued by famine and rampant poverty, faces an even more dire situation.

When he was employed in Saudi Arabia, Ali al-Za`ali was sending home about two-thirds of his monthly salary, 2,000 Saudi riyals ($530 USD), back to his family in Yemen. “Even then, with the local economy deteriorated and with the blockade, it just wasn’t enough for my family,” he told MintPress. The breadwinner for three families, al-Za`ali now struggles to secure even the basic staples needed for a single meal.

Yemen Making Daggers of Missiles

A craftsman makes traditional Yemeni daggers out of remains of Saudi coalition missiles, at his workshop, in Hajjah, Yemen. Missiles raining on Yemen from the jets of the Saudi-led coalition are killing thousands of civilians, now desperate Yemenis are scavenging the missiles to make ends meat. Hammadi Issa | AP
Millions of families in Yemen once relied on remittances from family members living in Saudi Arabia. According to surveys by the International Organization for Migration (IOM), three-quarters of those recently expelled from Saudi Arabia were sending money back to family in Yemen. Today, they find themselves in a country they are often unfamiliar with, suffering comprehensive economic collapse with no source of income, so fragile that in coming months the UN expects two in five Yemenis, around 12 million people, to face the worst famine in 100 years.

At least 3 million of Yemen’s 25 million citizens are estimated to work abroad, more than half of them in Saudi Arabia, the country that has spearheaded the destruction of their homeland. Remittances once contributed $2 billion annually to Yemen’s economy. Today, that economy is being deprived of one of its last remaining lifelines amidst an already staggering currency collapse.

Deportation process rife with sexual and physical abuse

Ali al-Za`ali recounted his experience, no less disturbing for being so common:

The police grabbed me while I was at the supermarket shop in north Jeddah. First, they took me to jail and put me in a small overcrowded cell filled only with Yemenis. When I got there two guards kicked me and beat me with a wire cable while they were hurling insults about my father and my country.”

Saudi media reported that more than 12,000 Yemenis — 10,371 men and 2,078 women — are currently being held in detention centers across the Kingdom.

During the deportation process, they are often subject to physical and psychological abuse including beatings, rape and reportedly even the theft of their organs. The abuse often comes not just from authorities but at the hands of their sponsors (Kafeel) who enjoy vast legal rights over those they employ.

Yemeni lawyer and jurist Taha Abu Talib told MintPress:

Saudi employers have inordinate power over expats outside of the law and with little accountability. The workers have no options because they need their initial employer’s approval to change jobs. The worker system means they have to face abuse or work under the table illegally.”

Eight out of the ten Yemenis expelled from Saudi Arabia who were interviewed for this story told MintPress that they were beaten, deprived of food, had their personal property stolen, or faced sexual and physical abuse.

One of the men MintPress interviewed, who wished only to be identified as A.W.S., said:

When I was in jail in Jizan, one of the guards took me into the bathroom and wanted to rape me; when I resisted he beat me with a wire cable.”

According to the International Organization for Migration, physical abuse and the theft of personal possessions is commonplace against Yemenis in the Kingdom.

Looting the deportees

Amar Haddi was expelled from Saudi Arabia last month. He was planning to open a store in Yemen like the one he once ran in the Saudi province of Jizan. Those plans were short-lived as Saudi authorities confiscated his store in Jizan when Haddi failed to sell it before the three-month deadline imposed by Saudi authorities. Today he lives in Hodeida — a city lying in ruin thanks to a seemingly endless barrage of Saudi coalition airstrikes — where food is scarce, outbreaks of disease plague residents, and work is nearly impossible to find.

Saudi Arabia claimed that it warned those marked for deportation that they would have to pay fines ranging from 15,000 to 100,000 riyals if they failed to validate their residency status or leave the country within 90 days. “I offered my shop for sale, but no one came; a three-month period just wasn’t enough,” Haddi told MintPress.

In July, Saudi authorities banned deportees from leaving the Kingdom with any four-wheel drive vehicles or heavy equipment, forcing families to leave behind their SUV’s and to instead hire cars or buses to ferry them to Yemen. Saudi authorities never provided an explanation for the ban.

“I had to go back to Sharurah city in Saudi Arabia and leave my car with a friend of Saudi nationality,”  Sameer Masudi told MintPress.

On the first day that the Saudi policy was announced, Saudi border guards detained entire families as they were being expelled back to Yemen at the Wadiah border crossing, preventing them from leaving with their family SUVs and forcing them to find other transportation into Yemen.

From civilian to mercenary

Saudi Arabia did give the now jobless masses of Yemeni deportees one option for employment: forgo training and become mercenaries for the coalition waging a bloody war against their homeland. Offering few options save starvation, Saudi Arabia capitalized on the deportees’ desperation by turning former shopkeepers into soldiers tasked with protecting Saudi troops in Jizan, Asir, and Najran from attacks by Yemen’s military. Saudi Arabia’s regular forces, equipped with the latest U.S.-supplied weapons, tend to stay far from the front lines.

A 25-year-old deportee, who wished to be identified only as A.S., recounted how he had been captured by Yemeni troops while fighting on the Najran border as a mercenary for Saudi Arabia. He told MintPress that he had the choice of either fighting for the Saudis or living in extreme poverty in Aden: “I am not in favor of the Saudi campaign against my country, but I am fighting with them for the sake of money.” A.S. is not alone. He is one of many desperate Yemeni deportees forced to fight and die in Saudi Arabia’s southwestern border region.

With Syria lost, Daesh outlives its usefulness to Israel

Given Israel’s proven collaboration with Daesh over the course of the Syrian conflict in order to aid its own regional ambitions, the recent decision to revoke the citizenship of 19 Israeli Daesh members is hardly the straightforward counter-terrorism measure it is being made out to be. Just more Zionist baloney.

While the recent decision to revoke the citizenship of alleged Daesh members has largely been framed as the Israeli government cracking down on terrorism, such narratives ignore Israel’s own past support for the terror group over the course of the Syrian conflict.

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Israeli warplanes in Yemen

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Saudi-Led Coalition Bombs Yemen Wedding with US Weapons, Killing 131 Civilians

Back-drop quicki–The Israeli goal is to take out Iran. But first they needed US to take out Syria for them to neutralize Syria and make the path clear for Israel to reach Iran without getting a bloody nose.  US planned to use a chemical attack false flag in Syria to blame on President Al-Assad but before they could, Syria agreed to become a signatory of the Chemical Weapons Convention, which it did and is. That took away US excuse to invade Syria for “humanitarian” reasons. So the US sent Al-Qaeda to Iraq and came back with “ISIS” to terrorize the Syrians etal, thus the US used ISIS terrorists as an excuse to go into Syria.

As it happened, Putin went into Syria also to fight ISIS with Iran’s help. That was for the purpose of embarrassing the US since they created ISIS to last long enough for Israel to get to Iran. Putin exposed the fact that US wasn’t fighting ISIS at all and Israel was aiding the wounded. Yemen was a part of the counter-terror coalition in the region and realized that US was not fighting ISIS but on the contrary was aiding the terrorists. They saw the war on ISIS was a fraud. So Yemen quit the coalition. Saudi Arabia soon led a coalition against  Yemen.

presstv.com

Houthi said Israeli jets have been seen in Hudaydah’s skies over the past few days amid a push by Saudi mercenaries to seize the city, Arabic-language al-Masirah television network reported.

“Yemen is actually fighting against a Saudi-Zionist coalition,” he said, referring to a military campaign which Riyadh has been carrying out against Yemen since 2015.

Several Western countries, the US and the UK in particular, are widely known to be helping Saudi Arabia in the aggression, but this is the first time claims of Israeli complicity have been made.

Referring to close ties between Israel and terrorist groups in Syria, Houthi noted that the Takfiri elements in Yemen are also the “mercenaries and servants” of Tel Aviv and Washington.

Israel and Saudi Arabia have no diplomatic relations, but latest reports say the two regimes are working behind the scenes to establish formal contact.

A senior Israeli nuclear expert revealed recently that Tel Aviv was selling Saudi Arabia information that would allow the kingdom to develop nuclear weapons.

Israel is providing Saudi Arabia with the kind of information that allows Riyadh to develop nuclear weapons, warns an Israeli nuclear expert.

Ami Dor-On, a senior nuclear commentator with the Israeli military organization iHLS, said the cooperation has been made possible in the wake of widening ties between Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Hudyadah situation

Hudaydah, home to about 400,000 people, is a lifeline for aid to war-torn Yemen. Riyadh claims the Houthis are using the key port for weapons delivery, an allegation rejected by the fighters.

The city, which lies on Yemen’s western Red Sea coast, has witnessed renewed tensions over the past few days. Saudi-backed forces have closed in on Hudaydah, sparking fears of an all-out assault.

The UN and humanitarian organizations have warned that a potential Saudi attack on Hudaydah could result in a disaster.

Jan Egeland, a former UN aid chief who now heads the Norwegian Refugee Council, told Doha-based Al Jazeera broadcaster on Saturday that a Saudi attack would make the situation “much worse.”

“We must avoid war at all costs in Hudaydah, not only because of the hundreds of thousands of people who would get in the crossfire but also because the port and the lifeline will be destroyed,” he said.

Egeland further demanded “a ceasefire and peace talks” to resolve the crisis in Yemen.

“What we asked for is that the United States, the United Kingdom and France who have influence over the Saudi-led coalition – they sell arms, they have close military relations, close diplomatic and intelligence cooperation – guarantee that attacks stop,” he added.

Earlier this week, the UN voiced grave concerns about the situation around Hudaydah.

The United Nations voices grave concern over the Saudi-backed militant attack on Yemeni city of Hudaydah.

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) also warned that fighting in Hudaydah would make “an already catastrophic situation even worse.”

“The ICRC is line with international humanitarian law urges all the parties to the conflict to respect civilian lives by taking every possible measure to protect civilians,” the Geneva-based humanitarian institution said in a statement.

Yemenis conduct retaliatory attacks

Separately on Saturday, al-Masirah reported that Yemeni army soldiers and fighters from allied Popular Committees had destroyed seven Saudi armored vehicles in the kingdom’s southern regions of Asir and Najran.

The Yemeni attacks came in retaliation for the Saudi-led military campaign on the impoverished state.

Yemeni forces further managed to prevent the advance of Saudi and Sudanese mercenaries in Asir and killed dozens of them, the report said.

Saudi Arabia and its allies launched a war on Yemen in March 2015 in support of Yemen’s former Riyadh-friendly government and against the Houthis.

The military campaign has killed and injured over 600,000 civilians, according to the Yemeni Ministry of Human Rights.

Saudi Arabia has also imposed a blockade on Yemen, which has smothered humanitarian deliveries of food and medicine to the import-dependent state.

Global Palestine, where are the Palestinians?

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Good news for Palestinians? Well, where are they?

Saudi Arabia, Egypt set up $10B fund for planned mega-city in Sinai. How about dropping some of that now into Palestine? They are dying! Or, is that the point?

Sanders-Led Group Introduces Bill Calling for Removal of US Forces From Yemen

weizmann_and_feisal_1918

The purpose of the Wahhabi sect was to bring about an Arab revolt against the Ottomans and pave the way for a Jewish state in Palestine. photo: Chaim Weizman, head of the world Zionist organization and and Prince Faisal 1918

Saudi Arabia Jewslims was born in the desert of Nejd and has since imposed its violence to the region on the back of religious radicalism.

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US forces in Yemen

“By continuing to blindly back Saudi Arabia’s starvation campaign, on top of fueling Yemen’s suffering, the US is creating more enemies and fueling the very extremism the War on Terror is supposed to be eradicating,” said Paul Kawika Martin, senior director for policy at Peace Action, in a statement on Wednesday. “Congress knows this, but Saudi Arabia’s legions of lobbyists on Capitol Hill have convinced some members of Congress to bury their heads in the sand.”

The US has been heavily supporting Saudi Arabia’s war on Yemen for years, supplying the kingdom with weaponry and military intelligence. Last August, the Pentagon acknowledged for the first time that American troops are on the ground in Yemen.

While American complicity in the Yemen crisis is rarely discussed on Capitol Hill, the House of Representatives last November overwhelmingly approved a resolution declaring that US military assistance to Saudi Arabia in its war on Yemen is not authorized.

In Zio-America, the ‘Syria experts’ have turned into ‘Iran experts’ overnight

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The ease with which American foreign policy “experts” can suddenly reinvent themselves, switching focus as the DC mood changes, exposes the Washington think tank racket as a giant sham designed to manipulate opinion.

Omri Ceren from the right-wing Likud-aligned Israel Project was also on the panel. Echoing Israeli government talking points, he called for the US to spread a “freedom agenda” in Iran – which is code for regime change.

When protests broke out in Iran at the end of 2017, Washington think tanks were ecstatic. They saw an opportunity to push for regime change and they went for it. Almost overnight, all of the self-proclaimed “Syria experts” who spent the last several years arguing for the overthrow of Syrian President Bashar Assad shifted their focus to Tehran.

The Hudson Institute, a conservative pro-war Washington outfit funded by major corporations and oil companies, is a case in point. On January 16, Hudson hosted a panel of so-called experts, titled “Iran Protests: Consequences for the Region and Opportunities for the Trump Administration.” The panel featured a who’s who of warmongers discussing how to weaken yet another Middle Eastern state.

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The Iranian expats are equivalent to the anti-Castro Cuban expats. They serve imperialism because imperialism serves them.

From ‘Russian meddling’ to Iran regime change: Social media as tools of US policy

The most notorious among them was regime change aficionado Charles Lister, a “senior fellow” (read lobbyist) at the Middle East Institute, an influential DC think tank that receives tens of millions of dollars from the United Arab Emirates, a country whose leadership is committed to regime change in Iran. Before he was an “Iran expert,” Lister rose to prominence agitating for regime change in Syria. He is perhaps best known for cheerleading Salafi jihadist Syrian rebel groups like Ahrar al-Sham and Nour al-Din al-Zenki, which Lister insisted were moderate despite their explicitly stated intention to wipe out minorities in Syria and their open alliance with Syria’s Al-Qaeda affiliate. Anyone who dared to criticize such groups or highlight their genocidal agendas quickly became targets of Lister over the years – he would brand them dictator lovers and Assadists.

It’s unclear whether Lister speaks any Arabic or whether he’s ever spent any significant amount of time in Syria or the Middle East more generally. But he says what the foreign policy establishment wants to hear, and for that, he is quoted extensively in the mainstream press on everything from Syria to Iran to even Egypt, with the New Yorker’s Robin Wright labelling him “an expert on Jihadism.”

During the Hudson panel, Lister argued against the US participating in locally negotiated ceasefires in Syria that have played a major role in de-escalating the violence that tore apart the country. Ceasefires benefit Hezbollah and Iran, warned Lister, who would apparently rather the bloodshed continue if it helps the US and its jihadist proxies. Lister also painted Israel as the ultimate victim of Iran in Syria and suggested the CIA assassinate Major General Qasem Soleimani of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. Soleimani heads Iran’s elite Quds Force, which conducts operations outside of Iran in both Iraq and Syria. He has been credited with helping to turn the tide in both countries against Al-Qaeda and Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) which has led to American fears that he threatens US hegemony in the region.

Blind Eye

Hudson’s in-house counterterrorism expert Michael Pregent, who previously accused Iran of refusing to fight IS while arguing that the sometimes IS-allied Free Syrian Army was the only force capable of defeating the terrorist group, also agitated for the assassination of Soleimani, but he called for Israel to do the dirty work rather than the CIA.

People protest in Los Angeles, California, U.S., in support of anti-government protesters in Iran © Lucy Nicholson

Iranian prosecutor points finger at CIA, Israel and Saudi Arabia for unrest

Omri Ceren from the right-wing Likud-aligned Israel Project was also on the panel. Echoing Israeli government talking points, he called for the US to spread a “freedom agenda” in Iran – which is code for regime change.

Another speaker was Brian Katulis from the Center for American Progress, a Democratic think tank that also receives funding from the UAE. Katulis employed empty slogans about supporting “freedom and justice” in Iran. Almost everything he said was forgettable. The UAE funding might explain why these experts continually blasted Iran for supposedly destabilizing Yemen without mentioning a word about the punishing Saudi-imposed siege which has led to famine and a cholera outbreak of epic proportions that kills a Yemeni child every 10 minutes.

The Hudson panel perfectly encapsulates how these establishment experts have no actual expertise, just fancy titles and shady funding that gives them a veneer of scholarly seriousness. They shift from one country to the next and are considered authoritative without any real credentials other than being white men who provide the intellectual backbone to Washington’s permanent war agenda, which all the panelists have a history of supporting. The fact that their policy prescriptions have ended in disaster for the people of the region doesn’t slow them down.

Death Toll

The war in Iraq killed over a million people and catapulted the region into violent sectarian warfare from which it has yet to recover. The Western intervention in Libya threw that country into chaos, transforming what was once the richest nation in Africa, with the highest literacy rates, into an ungovernable gang-run state home to IS slave markets. And then there’s Syria, where the US poured billions into funding Al-Qaeda-linked rebel groups to overthrow the government, creating the worst refugee crisis since World War Two.

People protest in Tehran, Iran December 30, 2017 © Reuters

Iran: Surviving another attack supported from abroad

The men who made up the Hudson panel supported all of these disastrous wars, which goes to show that being wrong gets you places in Washington. In fact, being wrong seems to be a prerequisite for promotion in Beltway circles.

No one epitomizes this dynamic more than Peter Bergen, a national security analyst at CNN. Two decades ago Bergen produced a rare interview with Osama bin Laden and he’s been capitalizing on it for 20 years. Since then he has fallen up to expert status on any and all issues pertaining to national security, counterterrorism and the Middle East, no matter how wrong he is. He supported the conflicts in Iraq and Libya. And here he is debating an actual expert, journalist Nir Rosen, and like always, Bergen argues for more war.

Another example is Ken Pollack from the Brookings Institute. He pushed hard for the war in Iraq and US interference in Libya and Syria. Despite the disastrous consequences of these policies, he is still described as an “expert” and recently penned a report for the Atlantic Council on countering Iran.

Destabilizing Iran has long been a policy goal of the US and its Israeli and Saudi allies. But the reality is that Iran is the most stable country in the Middle East and it played a crucial role in protecting the region from IS and Al-Qaeda. Whatever one thinks of the government in Iran, and there are of course many legitimate critiques as is true of any government, Iran’s only crime is that it acts independently of American interests and for that, it must be strong-armed into submission. So, let’s hope the experts don’t have their way.

rt.com