MIDDLE EAST | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

MIDDLE EAST

May 20 06:10

Taking a much tougher line on Israel is the ONLY way America will ever be able to escape the Middle East

As conflict rages in Gaza, it’s clear President Biden would much rather focus elsewhere. But the uncomfortable truth is the Middle East will always be a problem for the US until it completely rethinks its strategy on Israel.

The Biden administration is under increasing pressure to push for a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, despite the fact it has refused to condemn Tel Aviv in any circumstances.

However, the president’s priorities are clearly elsewhere. He is concentrating on America’s recovery from Covid-19, implementing his vision for the US economy, and continuing the recalibration of foreign policy away from the Middle East towards China and the Indo-Pacific.

May 20 03:46

What is behind Israel’s targeting of prominent buildings in Gaza?

Israel’s attacks on Gaza’s civilian buildings are an attempt to demoralise Palestinians and weaken their resolve.

Rami Aldraimli watched in disbelief as the building he had worked in for more than 20 years came crashing down.

Following a missile “warning”, Israeli fighter jets late on Tuesday afternoon bombed al-Awqaf building, the latest structure to be targeted by Israel during its relentless 10-day offensive on the besieged Gaza Strip.

The five-storey building in western Gaza City housed a number of offices, including of Mashareq, one of Gaza’s oldest and most prominent media production firms.

“It wasn’t just a company,” Aldraimli, Mashareq’s 43-year-old executive director, said. “It’s a dream I’ve been working on, building it up until we had 60 employees.”

Translation: The bombing of the building that includes the Mashareq Advertising Company and a stationery shop, in a move to destroy the Palestinian economy.

May 20 03:16

Israel kills boy featured in film about imprisoned kids

“Why are we so different from other children in the world? Why are we detained when we’re young and made to suffer, while others are happy playing sports, and with many opportunities that we don’t have?”

Those are the questions that Obaida Akram Abdurahman Jawabra, then 15, asks in the video above.

Israeli forces briefly detained Obaida a third time in April 2019.

Like most of the hundreds of Palestinian children detained by Israel each year, he was accused of stone throwing.

In the video, Obaida’s friend asks him if he fears going back to prison again.

“The problem is Route 60 and how to cross it to go to the camp. It’s controlled by the [Israeli military],” Obaida replies.

On Monday evening, Obaida was shot in the chest by an Israeli occupation soldier during a demonstration near the entrance of Arroub refugee camp.

He was demonstrating on the road he dreaded: Route 60.

May 20 02:50

TRAINED BY YEARS OF GUERILLA WAR, YEMEN’S HOUTHIS WANT TO EXPORT THIER REVOLUTION TO PALESTINE

SOURCE: MINT PRESS
Ansar Allah, who has enjoyed staggering success in staving off the wholesale invasion of their country by the U.S.-backed Saudi military, is eager to export its resistance mentality and battlefield knowledge to Palestine.

By Ahmed Abdulkareem

n Yemen’s capital city of Sana’a, hundreds of thousands of residents from the suburbs and neighboring towns gathered at Bab al-Yemen, the city’s main square, carrying Palestinian flags and holding banners encouraging Hamas to continue its campaign of pressure against Israel. In Hodeida, hundreds of thousands of protesters took to the streets despite the ever-present threat of incoming artillery shells, snipers’ bullets, and Saudi warplanes hovering above.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

There is only so far one can push people, without those people pushing back; unfortunately, Israeli hubris will prevent this realization from happening until it is acutally too late to change the outcome, and may wind up bringing them to an horrific set of costs at the peace negotiation table.

May 19 15:17

Gazan Man Admits To Using Children As Human Shields To ‘Reveal Israel’s Cruelty’ In Leaked Phone Call — “If The Children Need To Die Then They’ll Die”

If there were ever more proof needed that the terrorists of Gaza care little about the lives of their own people, including children, then here it is.

Unlike Hamas, who hurl rockets in to Israel indiscriminately, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) call residents of buildings in Gaza before striking them, giving them the opportunity to flee and save their lives. In a new video, the IDF begs a Gazan man on the other end of the line to evacuate a targeted house, saying that he is responsible for the lives of the children inside.

“If the children have to die, they will die,” the man replied.

May 18 05:45

France and other nations to cancel Sudan's $5 billion IMF debt, with decision to be approved in June, Macron says

President Emmanuel Macron has said France and other rich nations will cancel Sudan's $5 billion debt to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in a move the organization is to approve by the end of next month.

“We are in favor of an outright cancellation of Sudan's debt, which is as you know the most important among the Paris Club,” Macron told a news conference on Monday.

The president made the remarks after hosting a conference in Paris for Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok and General Abdel-Fattah Burhan, the head of the country's governing sovereign council.

Conference attendees, including the UK and the US, agreed to wipe the African nation's arrears, with France set to follow its fellow lenders by putting up a $1.5 billion bridge loan.

May 17 13:18

The US Democratic Party’s big mistake – support for Israel

Dan Lieberman shows how the US Democratic Party's – and President Biden's – support for Israel not only undermines US interests worldwide, but also serves to bolster chauvinists and racists all over the world.>>

May 16 13:36

Israel’s Yom Kippur Syndrome revisited

Gilad Atzmon argues that the present carnage unleashed by Israel is rooted in an aspect of Jewish culture that is built on arrogance, hubris and the inability to introspect.>>

May 15 06:17

With Jordan, Lebanon border violence Israel faces 4-front conflict

Lebanese protesters, likely urged on by Hezbollah, tried to breach an area of a border fence in northern Israel on Friday near Metulla. In Lod, Israel continued a curfew after nights of violence that had the city looking like it was suffering a civil war.

In Gaza the IDF struck another Hamas anti-tank squad, one of a half dozen such units targeted in recent days. On the Jordan border, demonstrators supporting the Palestinians tried to break through to reach Israel and the West Bank. Israel is now facing a four-front conflict – its internal strife, Gaza, Lebanon and Jordan – and possibly more violence in Jerusalem and the West Bank.

May 14 05:26

Ahmadinejad Is Back: Iranian Firebrand Announces Bid For Presidency 

At a moment that Iranian domestic politics are on a knife's edge of tension, particularly following the recent hardliner vs. 'moderate' row in the wake of the 'Zarif Gate' audio leak scandal wherein the foreign minister blasted the military establishment for often sabotaging diplomacy, the Islamic Republic's former firebrand president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is vying again for leadership of the country.

On Wednesday he formally submitted and announced his name as a candidate in the upcoming June 18 presidential elections. His Islamic conservative and 'hardline' reputation could have drastic impact on the continuing nuclear negotiations with the West should he be elected.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Pols in Israel must be rejoicing big-time, because his potential election in the 2021 election would make it far easier to proclaim it "impossible" to deal with the country, and to justify a war against it.

May 13 00:45

Live: More children killed in Gaza, Palestinians in Israel face escalating crackdown

Follow MEE's updates as Israeli strikes continue to pound Gaza, Hamas rockets hit Israel and protesting Palestinians risk assault and arrest.

May 13 00:43

Israel Rejects Hamas Truce Offer, Says Gaza Campaign ‘Far From Over’

The Israeli security cabinet voted to intensify airstrikes, Defense Minister Gantz said the operation has 'no end date'
by Dave DeCamp Posted onMay 12, 2021CategoriesNewsTagsGaza, Israel, Palestine
On Wednesday night, Israel rejected a ceasefire offer from Hamas and approved a plan to intensify airstrikes in Gaza.

The truce offer from Hamas was made through the Russian foreign ministry. A Hamas official was quoted as saying that the group would halt attacks on a “mutual basis” with Israel.

According to Haaretz, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the ministers in the Israeli security cabinet agreed unanimously to reject the ceasefire and continue bombing Gaza. The cabinet then voted to escalate the attacks indefinitely

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This very much reminds me of the Catholic response to the Siege at Montsegur against the Cathars, when the Catholic prelate leading the army, was told that there were women and children among the besieged Albigensian men, and "St. Dominic's" response was; "Kill them all: God will find his own."

May 13 00:39

THE ISRAEL NARRATIVE IS CRUMBLING BECAUSE OF PHONE CAMERAS AND THE INTERNET

SOURCE: CAITLIN JOHNSTONE
There are a lot of factors contributing to the growing awareness of Israel's brutality, but I think the…

“Twenty-four people, including nine children, were killed in Gaza overnight, most of them in Israeli strikes,” reads a new report from AP.
Nine children, killed with the help of United States funding to the tune of $3.8 billion a year.

Remember kids, the US loves Muslims and just wants to protect their human rights.

The Monday night airstrikes were in response to rocket attacks by Gaza resistance groups which had reportedly injured six Israelis, and those rocket attacks were in turn were a response to a deluge of Israeli police brutality footage in Jerusalem in preceding days. Electronic Intifada reports:

This came at the end of a day of violence that began in occupied East Jerusalem, where Israeli forces assaulted worshippers at the al-Aqsa mosque compound, injuring hundreds.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

There is a point... where adults in the room, in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, and Gaza are going to have to realize, that the ulgy truth is being laid bare, on the ground, with real time images that put the lie to Israel's "official narrative" which is being destroyed and dissected, point for point.

Now, the question is, what are the "adults in the room" going to do about it, or has it taken on an stoppable trajectory to cause a regional, and perhaps, world war?!?

There is a word I would use to those in the Bowels of Power in DC, and that word... is "Caution!!"

May 12 07:34

Fire erupts at Kuwait’s largest oil field; two injured

A fire erupted Monday at Kuwait’s largest oil field, injuring two workers, the country’s state-run news agency reported.

The injured workers were in stable condition and receiving treatment at a nearby hospital, according to the state-run KUNA news agency, citing Qusai al-Amer, the Kuwait Oil Company spokesman.

The blaze at the Great Burgan Field in the southeastern desert of Kuwait, which produces over 1.6 million barrels of oil a day, did not impact production, the report said. Burgan is among the world’s largest producing fields, ranked second only to Saudi Arabia’s Ghawar Field.

Kuwait, a nation home to 4.1 million people that’s slightly smaller than the U.S. state of New Jersey, has the world’s sixth-largest known oil reserves. Most of the country’s production comes from a single field, Burgan.

May 11 18:59

Mayor Of Lod, Israel: 'We Have Completely Lost Control Of The City And The Streets Are Witnessing A Civil War Between Arabs And Jews'

Yair Revivo, the Mayor of Lod, Israel said Tuesday that the Israeli government has "lost control of the city and the streets" and demanded the military be deployed to stop a "civil war between Arabs and Jews."

May 11 13:08

14 May 1948: the Zionists' day of infamy

Stuart Littlewood highlights the terrorist and racist foundations of the state of Israel, and the ongoing ethnic cleansing of the indigenous Palestinians – Muslims and Christians – and the theft of Palestinian land.>>

May 11 08:30

High Tension: Two iranian speedboats clash with US naval warfare fleet in Strait of Hormuz

May 10 12:13

The Temple Mount is on Fire!!!

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Police are saying that someone has been firing fireworks at the temple mount.

May 10 06:06

Navy seizes THOUSANDS of Chinese and Russian assault weapons, sniper rifles and anti-tank missiles hidden on ship 'sailing from Iran to Yemen' in the Arabian Sea

The U.S. Navy has seized an arms shipment of thousands of illicit assault weapons, machines guns and sniper rifles hidden aboard a ship in the Arabian Sea likely headed for Yemen, officials have said.

The U.S. fifth fleet, based in Bahrain, announced on Sunday that the guided-missile cruiser USS Monterey discovered the weapons aboard a stateless dhow - a traditional Mideast sailing ship - in an operation that began Thursday in the northern reaches of the Arabian Sea off Oman and Pakistan.

An American defense official said the weapons resembled previous shipments which have been intercepted that were bound for Houthi rebels in Yemen.

May 10 05:24

Expert says Israel playing overt, fundamental role in Yemen’s Ma’rib battle

An expert on Yemen’s political affairs says Israel has been playing an overt, fundamental role in the battle in Ma’rib province, which has been central to the Sana’a government’s fight to gain control over all of the war-torn country’s territory.

“Israel has played an overt, vital role in the battle of Ma’rib in particular and throughout Yemen in general,” Zayd Ahmad al-Grsy said in an interview with Press TV.

“Any movement of the United Arab Emirates, whether in the Red Sea, south of Yemen, Socotra Island and other islands, is an Israeli action carried out by the Tel Aviv regime under the cover of Abu Dhabi,” al-Grsy said.

He stressed that all of the UAE's movements are carried out with the aim of achieving the Israeli regime’s goals.

The political analyst maintained that Israel has been directly involved in the war against Yemen, reiterating that the regime’s role is completely obvious in the Ma’rib battle.

May 10 05:23

Jordan warns Israel against 'barbaric' attacks on Al-Aqsa mosque

King Abdullah II, whose Hashemite family has custodianship over the Muslim Temple Mount compound, accuses Israel of trying to change the demographic status of the Holy City; hundreds protest outside Israeli embassy in Amman

May 09 11:46

Israel: They really do shoot children, don’t they. So would you really holiday in a country that repeatedly commits such crimes with impunity?

Stuart Littlewood reminds would-be visitors to Israel of its murderous policy of intentionally killing Palestinian children – a policy which since 2008/09 has claimed the lives of 805 children as well as 342 women.>>

May 08 06:29

Who Wags the Dog? Israel’s Friends in Washington Mean Constant War in the Middle East

Donald Trump, who was elected President of the United States in 2016, may have won due to voters attracted by his pledge to end many of the “stupid” wars that the American military was involved in worldwide. In the event, however, he ended no wars in spite of several attempts to withdraw from Afghanistan and Syria, and almost started new conflicts with cruise missile attacks and the assassination of an Iranian general. Trump was consistently outmaneuvered by his “experts” on the National Security Council and at the Pentagon, who insisted that it was too early to disengage from the Middle East and Central Asia, that America’s own national security would be threatened.

May 07 06:43

Oh What a Lovely New War! False Flagging in the Middle East?

There has been virtually no American media coverage of last week’s arrival of a senior Israeli delegation in Washington to discuss Iran. The delegation included the head of the Israeli external intelligence service Mossad Yossi Cohen and Israel’s National Security Advisor Meir Ben-Shabbat. Their itinerary included briefings at the Pentagon and also with national security and State Department officials at the White House. Lest there be any confusion about the “mission” of the delegation, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced unambiguously that his team would be explaining why Iran should not be trusted and that any agreement with it is “fundamentally flawed” in that it opens the door to a nuclear weapon for the Iranians when the deal enters its “sunset” phase after ten years.

May 07 06:27

As NATO Summit Approaches: Will Biden Keep US Nuclear Weapons in Turkey?

A piece was published in Turkey’s Hürriyet on May 5 by its editor-in-chief Sedat Ergin analyzing the prospects of the Biden administration removing American nuclear bombs from Turkey.

It has been estimated that the Pentagon maintains 50 B61 tactical nuclear weapons at the Incirlik Air Base in the country among an estimated 350 of those kept in Europe under the auspices of a NATO nuclear sharing or burden sharing arrangement. Both expressions are used. The other 300 bombs are reputed to be in Belgium, Germany, Italy and the Netherlands. Those in Turkey have the advantage of being closer to Russia and the Middle East. The Incirlik Air Base, in Adana, is not far from Turkey’s border with Syria.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF Biden's handlers have any horse-sense whatsoever, they will get these weapons OUT of Turkey, just as quickly as humanly/diplomatically possible.

May 06 05:33

Biden to UAE crown prince: Israel normalization of ‘strategic importance’

US President Joe Biden spoke by phone with Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Zayed al Nahyan on Tuesday, in his first call with the de facto ruler of the United Arab Emirates since entering the White House in January.

During the call, Biden hailed the Trump-era normalization of ties between Israel and the United Aarab Emirates, according to a White House statement.

“They discussed regional and global challenges, including Afghanistan, the nuclear and regional dimensions of the threat posed by Iran, as well as the common quest for de-escalation and peace in the Middle Peace,” the statement said.

May 05 07:20

Rouhani censures Israel as enemy of Palestine, entire region

As supporters of the Palestinian cause prepare to mark the International Quds Day worldwide, Iran’s president has denounced Israel as the enemy of Palestinians and other nations in the region, but said the Zionist regime’s occupation of Palestine will not last forever.

“The Zionists are the enemies of the region, of security, of Palestinian people and of their neighbors, and they are the executioners and tyrants of [contemporary] history, who have displaced millions of people from their homes,” President Hassan Rouhani said at a weekly cabinet session on Wednesday.

Referring to International Quds Day, which falls on May 7 this year, Rouhani said the occasion would be a “mourning day for the Zionists” this year.

He said Quds Day, which was named by the late founder of the Islamic Republic Imam Khomeini to champion the Palestinian cause, is a source of pride for the Islamic Republic of Iran and a legacy of the late Imam.

May 04 06:11

America Is Still Servicing Saudi Aircraft Bombing Yemen

The Biden administration has finally clarified the extent to which it is still supporting Saudi Arabia’s military in Yemen.

In comments to Vox, Pentagon officials admitted that the US is still maintaining Saudi Arabia’s warplanes by using contractors. The US could cancel the contracts at any time, which would effectively ground the Saudi Air Force, ending the vicious bombing campaign that has been raging since March 2015.

“The United States continues to provide maintenance support to Saudi Arabia’s Air Force given the critical role it plays in Saudi air defense and our longstanding security partnership,” a Pentagon spokesperson told Vox over the weekend.

The maintenance is done through the Pentagon’s Foreign Military Sales program, which means Saudi Arabia pays the US to provide contractors that can maintain the warplanes.

Apr 30 08:12

Iran’s Zarif calls for end of Yemen siege in meeting with chief  Ansarullah negotiator 

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has expressed regret over the conditions facing Yemen as a result of the six-year war imposed on the country, calling for an end to the Saudi-led military aggression and the lifting of the siege on the impoverished nation.

Zarif made the remarks in a meeting with Chief negotiator for Yemen's popular Ansarullah movement Mohammed Abdul-Salam in the Omani capital of Muscat on Wednesday.

He reaffirmed Iran’s support for a political solution as the only way out of the ongoing conflict in Yemen, a ceasefire and intra-Yemeni talks.

During the meeting, Abdul Salam also praised Iran’s support for the Yemeni people and briefed Zarif on the latest developments in the country.

Apr 29 06:28

The Middle East Is Reorganizing

The Middle Eastern states, divided not by themselves but by the powers that colonised the region, are reorganising themselves according to their own logic. Of course these new alliances are still fragile, but the West will have to deal with them...

That makes the Middle East difficult to understand is that it comprises a multitude of actors with different logics who, depending on the circumstances, make or break alliances. We often think we know the region politically, who our friends and enemies are. But when we return to the same place years later, the landscape has changed dramatically: some of our former friends have become enemies, while some of our former friends want us dead.

This is what is happening now. In a few months, everything will have changed.

Apr 29 06:21

F-15E Strike Eagle Smart-Bomb Transports Are Hauling Munitions Around The Middle East

As The War Zone predicted, it didn’t take too long for the U.S. Air Force’s “bomb truck” F-15E Strike Eagle configuration to appear in an operational theater. Jets featuring the modified munitions carriage, allowing each to haul up to 15 Joint Direct Attack Munitions (JDAMs) of various types simultaneously, recently arrived in the U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) area of operations.

Apr 27 08:45

Unconfirmed Reports Of Oil Tanker Attacked Off Saudi Coast 

Maritime intelligence firm Dryad Global received "unconfirmed reports" that an oil tanker, possibly named "NCC Dammam," has been attacked off the Saudi Red Sea port of Yanbu.

Strategic Risk Consultancy MENA tweeted that "for three and a half hours the NCC DAMMAM has been showing the status of 'Not Under Command' on Marine Traffic."

Refinitiv vessel-tracking data shows around 0242GMT, the vessel deviated off course and began sailing in a zig-zag formation as speed dramatically slowed to less than a knot. The ship was en route to the port of Yanbu al-Bahr, Saudi Arabia, but appears to be stopped.

Apr 26 10:53

Lest we forget: Israel’s armed aggression against the Christian Church

Stuart Littlewood reminds us of the gratuitous brutality visited upon the Church of the Nativity – the most famous of Christian churches — by the Israeli occupation army and the wanton, murderous brutality inflicted by the Israelis on the church's occupants.>>

Apr 26 07:16

The British Cabal Behind a Gulf Dictatorship

The repressive ruler of a close U.K. ally in the Gulf secretly received decades of advice on security, foreign and economic policy from a group of privy councillors who were drawn almost exclusively from the British establishment, it has emerged.

Oman’s dictator, Sultan Qaboos, who ruled the country for 50 years from 1970 to 2020, was advised by a secret privy council right up until his death last year.

The scheme appears to have been inspired by Britain’s privy council, the oldest functioning legislative assembly in the U.K., whose members advise the queen and have access to classified intelligence material.

Unlike the queen who is a ceremonial monarch, Sultan Qaboos wielded absolute power, banning political parties and independent media.

He spent billions of pounds on British weaponry and surveillance equipment to fortify his regime, which is located on a key oil supply route between Iran and Saudi Arabia.

Apr 24 07:03

The Prospect of a Major False-Flag Operation in the Middle-East Grows by the Day: Remembering June 8th, 1967 the Day Israel Attacked the USS Liberty

June 8th, 1967 is a date in history that the world should recognize because it was the day that Israel attacked the USS Liberty, a US Navy spy ship during the Six-Day War. So why would a supposedly staunch US ally do such a thing against one of its most loyal servants? Was it an accident or was it a failed false-flag operation?

In this time of uncertainty, the Israelis have been planning numerous ways to stop Iran’s nuclear program but the question is how would they accomplish such a task? Israeli officials including its Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who is perhaps, the most vocal of the crowd would do almost anything at this point to prevent Washington from re-entering the Joint Comprehension Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear agreement with Iran since the Trump administration abruptly pulled out from the deal in 2017.

Apr 22 06:24

Biden’s Yemen Envoy Claims He Doesn’t Know if the US Is Still Supporting Saudi Military Operations

Tim Lenderking was appointed by President Biden as a special envoy to find a diplomatic solution to the war in Yemen. But on Wednesday, Lenderking told Congress that he had no idea if the US was still providing military support for the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen.

“I’m not totally in that information loop, congressman, so I can’t really speak to that,” Lenderking said when asked by Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA) if the US is currently supporting Saudi military operations in Yemen. “I do think that we need to make sure that Saudi Arabia is able to defend itself … but my focus is driving toward a ceasefire, so we can get out of this whole question of offensive and defensive weapons,” Lenderking added.

Apr 21 05:53

Bin Salman backed Israeli plot to overthrow Jordan king: Report

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has reportedly backed an Israeli “scheme” to overthrow Jordanian King Abdullah II in exchange for the guardianship of al-Aqsa Mosque in the occupied Old City of Jerusalem al-Quds.

Lebanon's Al Akhbar newspaper, quoting a Jordanian security official, said in a report on Tuesday that the coup attempt against King Abdullah II was a "scheme" involving Israel, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, and the United States.

The Beirut-based daily said the Saudi crown prince had agreed to support the Israeli plot in return for the transfer of the guardianship over the holy sites in the occupied Jerusalem al-Quds from Jordan to Saudi Arabia.

According to the unnamed official, Israel planned the coup against the Jordanian king over Amman’s opposition to the so-called US deal of the century, which allows the Tel Aviv regime to annex settlements in the occupied West Bank and the Jordan Valley.

Apr 21 05:52

Yemen army hits ‘military site’ inside SW Saudi airport in new retaliation

The Yemeni army has carried out a successful drone attack against a “military site” within the Abha International Airport in southwestern Saudi Arabia, keeping up the impoverished country’s retaliation against a Riyadh-led war.

The reprisal against the terminal that lies in the kingdom’s Asir region took place on Tuesday, using one of the Yemeni armed forces’ indigenously-manufactured Qasef-2K UAVs, army spokesman Brigadier General Yahya Saree said in a brief statement.

“The hit was accurate,” Saree noted in the statement that was reported by Yemen’s al-Masirah television network. “This targeting comes in response to the escalation of aggression and the ongoing siege on our dear country.”

The Saudi kingdom and its allies have been waging the war for more than seven years in a futile attempt to restore Yemen’s former Riyadh-allied officials.

Apr 21 05:20

UN experts demand release of Dubai's Princess Latifa

UN human rights experts called on the United Arab Emirates to disclose the whereabouts of Princess Latifa two months after the BBC released a video showing the Dubai ruler's daughter saying she was being held hostage by her father.

A joint statement by UN human rights experts, including investigators on torture and violence against women, called for Latifa's immediate release, verification on her whereabouts and details on the conditions of where she is being held.

"We are alarmed that, following the public release in February of footage in which Sheikha Latifa reported being deprived of her liberty against her will, and the subsequent official request for further information on her situation, no concrete information has been provided by the authorities," the UN experts said in a joint statement on Tuesday.

"The statement issued by the Emirates authorities' merely indicating that she was being 'cared for at home' is not sufficient at this stage."

Apr 19 06:56

For Riyadh, the prize in Yemen is oil – for Houthis the prize is Yemen

The bloody conflict continues to rage in Yemen with a new flashpoint erupting between Houthi rebels and a Saudi-led coalition on Monday, after Houthi drones hit Aramco refineries at Jeddah and Jubail.

According to Houthi military spokesman Yahya Saree, the attacks were part of a night raid of 10 drones that also struck “sensitive military areas” in the southern part of Saudi Arabia.

The Houthi attacks on Saudi oil facilities proceeded in parallel with a renewed Houthi offensive to take control of Yemen’s oil-rich Marib region, the last northern stronghold of Saudi occupiers, in their six-year war against the Houthis on behalf of deposed Yemeni President Abdrabuh Mansour Hadi.

Apr 19 06:27

At Least 70 Killed as Yemen Fighting Rages in Maarib, Taiz

Fighting continues to rage in Yemen, with the Houthi movement both trying to consolidate gains near Maarib, and trying to push for new opportunities around the contested city of Taiz, leading to major clashes.

Over the past few days, reports are that the Houthis made gains near Maarib, along the northwestern routes which they have been contesting. At least 42 more were killed in fighting over the weekend, but without any apparent new gains.

Meanwhile in Taiz, the Houthis are testing defenses in a city which is split between the two sides since the earliest days of the Saudi invasion. As usual, fighting was intense but little territory seems to have changed hands. At least 28 fighters were killed.

Taiz sees a lot of fighting, but rarely anything happens that suggests the stalemate might break. Maarib, on the other hand, represents the last Saudi holding in north Yemen, and the Houthis seem to be making gains in their approach. This could still be a city falling to them.

Apr 17 06:57

UN complicit in US-Saudi act of piracy against fuel tankers: Yemen

The Yemen Petroleum Company (YPC) has lashed out at US-backed invading Saudi coalition for impounding Yemeni fuel tankers, calling the United Nations "a partner in the maritime piracy."

“The US-Saudi coalition keeps confiscating ships carrying Yemeni fuel under the auspices of the United Nations,” YPC Executive Director Ammar al-Adhrai said.

Al-Adhrai made the remarks on Friday during a protest held outside the UN office in the Yemeni capital Sana'a under the slogan "Denying the siege is an additional crime."

"Since the beginning of 2021, only one ship carrying diesel has been able to enter Hudaydah,” he added, referring to the strategic port that is a lifeline for millions of Yemenis.

Adhrai warned that the lives of 26 million Yemenis will be at risk if the act of preventing Yemeni fuel vessels from entering Hudaydah continues.

Apr 17 05:33

At Least 96 Killed as Yemen’s Houthis Push Toward Maarib

Since February, fighting has raged over the northern Yemen city of Maarib, the last government-held possession in the north, as the Houthis and their allies try to contest control over it with a 3-pronged offensive.

In recent weeks, reports are that the Houthis are gaining some ground, and in the last two days they’ve gone deeper in, with heavy fighting killing 96 fighters, mostly Houthis. They are still, slowly but surely, advancing on the city.

Pro-Saudi forces say that the Houthis now pose a “very real threat” to both fronts on the city’s northwest. The third front to the south mostly appears unchanged, and under government control.

Maarib’s value is often overstated, as its wealth of oil and gas is only measurable by comparison to other desperately poor cities in Yemen. The city is small, and struggling with a large refugee problem from the surrounding area.

Apr 17 05:25

At Least 96 Killed as Yemen’s Houthis Push Toward Maarib

Since February, fighting has raged over the northern Yemen city of Maarib, the last government-held possession in the north, as the Houthis and their allies try to contest control over it with a 3-pronged offensive.

In recent weeks, reports are that the Houthis are gaining some ground, and in the last two days they’ve gone deeper in, with heavy fighting killing 96 fighters, mostly Houthis. They are still, slowly but surely, advancing on the city.

Pro-Saudi forces say that the Houthis now pose a “very real threat” to both fronts on the city’s northwest. The third front to the south mostly appears unchanged, and under government control.

Maarib’s value is often overstated, as its wealth of oil and gas is only measurable by comparison to other desperately poor cities in Yemen. The city is small, and struggling with a large refugee problem from the surrounding area.

Apr 16 13:41

Politicians Concerned about Violence Should Start by Ending Their Wars and Their Police State

It looks like the next EOs Biden aims at mandating are related to the topic of gun control: “Gun violence in this country is an epidemic. Let me say it again. Gun violence in this country is an epidemic.” This is ironic coming from the former vice president of the Obama administration, which started regime change wars in countries like Yemen, Libya, and Syria which in large part included supplying certain “moderate” rebel groups like al-Nusra and ISIS with weapons, cash, and intelligence support that was ultimately used to slaughter innocent men, women, and children.

Apr 16 10:19

US Claims Preventing Fuel Ships From Docking in Yemen Is ‘Not a Blockade’

The US State Department claimed in comments to Vox that Yemen is not under blockade even though the Saudis are actively preventing fuel ships from docking in the port of Hodeidah. Shipments are still being blocked despite UN warnings that 400,000 Yemeni children will starve to death this year if conditions don’t change.

“It is not a blockade,” a State Department spokesperson told Vox on Monday. “Food is getting through, commodities are getting through, so it is not a blockade.”

While data shows food has been entering Yemen, a CNN investigation from last month showed food trucks stranded on the side of the road due to a lack of fuel. Without fuel, food and medicine cannot be delivered to Yemen’s starving civilian population that has been subject to the vicious US-Saudi siege since March 2015.

Apr 14 04:49

Biden administration proceeding with $23 billion weapons sales to UAE

The administration of US President Joe Biden is moving forward with over $23 billion in weapons sales to the United Arab Emirates, which include advanced F-35 aircraft, armed drones and other equipment.

The Biden administration would proceed with the proposed sales to the UAE, “even as we continue reviewing details and consulting with Emirati officials” pertaining to the use of the weapons, a State Department spokesperson said on Tuesday.

The deals had been agreed to by former Republican president Donald Trump, but the Democratic president’s administration had paused them for review.

In November, the White House informed the Congress about the planned $23.37 billion package which contained products from General Atomics, Lockheed Martin Corp and Raytheon Technologies Corp, including 50 F-35 Lighting II aircraft, up to 18 MQ-9B Unmanned Aerial Systems and a package of air-to-air and air-to-ground munitions.

Apr 12 06:17

At Least 123 Killed in Heavy Fighting Over Yemen’s Maarib

Fighting has continued to rage and even escalate in Yemen’s Maarib, a city that has been contested for months. Over the weekend, the Houthis have been trying to push into the city in an offensive on three different fronts.

The Houthis are pushing from two routes in the north, through Kassara and al-Mashjah, both of which are making progress, and Jabal Murad in the south. Officials say they’ve thwarted the offensive in the south.

In the past 48 hours, 123 fighters have been killed. 53 were killed in the past 24 hours. While Saudi officials conceded some ground was lost, they suggested that the city itself is not in any immediate risk of falling.

The months of fighting over Maarib have seen many hundreds killed on both sides. The city is considered key to the Houthis as the last northern city they don’t control, and the expectation is that if they did control it, it would inform the peace process.

Apr 12 06:08

Yemeni drones, missiles hit Aramco refineries, military sites in Saudi Arabia

Yemeni armed forces and allied Popular Committees fighters have launched fresh attacks on targets deep in Saudi Arabia in retaliation for the kingdom’s ongoing aggression on their country.

Spokesman for the Yemeni Armed Forces Brigadier General Yahya Saree said that 17 drones and ballistic missiles were used in a operation against Saudi Arabia on Monday.

Aramco refineries in Jubail and Jeddah were hit with 10 drones of Samad-3 type as part of the operation, he said.

According to the spokesman, “sensitive military targets” in the Saudi cities of Khamis Mushait and Jizan were hit with five Qasef-2K UAVs as well as two ballistic missiles of Badr 1 type.

The operation, which took place on Sunday evening and continued until dawn, hit its targets “successfully”, he added.

Saree stressed that the retaliatory attacks will continue as long as the Saudi aggression and blockade persist.

Apr 10 07:13

Utah KC-135s Deploy to the Middle East

Utah Air National Guard KC-135s and Airmen deployed to the Middle East on April 5-6 to support combat operations in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria.

The four KC-135s and 120 Airmen from the 151st Air Refueling Wing will support Operation Inherent Resolve—the ongoing fight against the Islamic State group, Operation Freedom’s Sentinel in Afghanistan, and Spartan Shield—the overall U.S. mission in Southwest Asia.

As part of a new KC-135 and C-130 deployment model, the 151st Maintenance Group is deploying as one overall group as opposed to a combined deployed group of Airmen from different units, according to a Utah Air National Guard release.

Air Mobility Command in 2019 adopted the deployment model of sending whole units to promote cohesion and ensure better predictability.

Apr 09 05:51

Congressional Democrats Call on Biden to Lift Yemen Blockade

A group of over 70 House Democrats sent a letter to President Biden urging him to pressure Saudi Arabia into lifting the blockade on Yemen as the UN is warning 400,000 Yemeni children under the age of five will starve to death if conditions don’t change.

The letter was led by Reps. Ro Khanna (D-CA), Mark Pocan (D-WI), and Debbie Dingell (D-MI). The lawmakers said the president should demand an end to the blockade “independently” of the ongoing negotiations between Saudi Arabia and Yemen’s Houthis, although ending the embargo would jump-start the peace talks since it is a key Houthi demand for a ceasefire.

Apr 08 06:16

Press review: Ukraine drags NATO into Donbass and Second Suez flop raises canal concerns

The Donbass negotiations are stuck in the mud. Neither the Normandy format, nor the Contact Group are able to agree on anything, Kommersant writes. Against this background, Kiev is betting on the West’s help, trying to persuade NATO to grant Ukraine membership in the alliance. According to the newspaper, the events that are now unfolding are beginning to look like the situation that had developed in 2008 before the war in another hot spot - South Ossetia.

The OSCE Special Monitoring Mission’s latest report, dated April 3, shows a notable surge in ceasefire violations in Donbass. There were 594 breaches in the Donetsk region and 427 violations in Lugansk. Due to this exacerbation, on April 6, Kiev requested an emergency meeting of the Trilateral Contact Group (TCG) to resolve the situation in eastern Ukraine. However, the chances that the negotiations initiated by Ukraine will take place are slim, Kommersant's sources say.

Apr 07 07:13

Jordan gov’t accuses ex-crown prince of ‘malicious plot’

Jordan’s former crown prince, Prince Hamzah, has been liaising with foreign parties over a “malicious plot” to destabilise the country, the Jordanian deputy prime minister said.

On Saturday the military said it had issued a warning to the prince over actions targeting “security and stability” in the kingdom. Prince Hamzah, King Abdullah II’s half-brother, later said he was under house arrest. Several high-profile figures were detained.

Apr 02 03:19

Senate seeks to enhance Arab-Israeli normalization at the expense of the Palestinians

A bipartisan group of Senators introduced a bill last week to advance the normalization of ties between Israel and Arab governments in a move to further politically isolate the Palestinian people and give Israel greater latitude to entrench its ongoing settler-colonialism against them.

S.1061, the Israel Relations Normalization Act of 2021, was introduced on March 25 by Senators Rob Portman (R-OH), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Jim Risch (R-ID), Todd Young (R-IN), and Ben Cardin (D-MD), and cosponsored by 13 additional Senators, including some Democrats, such as Dick Durbin (D-IL), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Raphael Warnock (D-GA), and Tim Kaine (D-VA), who have previously spoken out in support of Palestinian human rights.

The bill was supported by AIPAC during its virtual lobbying conference earlier this month.

Apr 01 12:43

Biden Orders Pentagon to Remove Patriots, Forces Out of Persian Gulf Region, Reports Suggest

President Joe Biden has ordered the Pentagon to start removing Patriot anti-missile systems, other military hardware and forces from the Persian Gulf region and could deploy them elsewhere to counter Russia and China, the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday, citing officials.

The Pentagon has moved three Patriot systems out of the region, including one that was located in Saudi Arabia's Prince Sultan Air Base. It has also moved an aircraft carrier, surveillance systems and other military capabilities out of the Middle East, the report said.

Mar 31 06:36

In Yemen, 6 Years of Suffering and Death in an Ill-Fated War

On March 26, 2015, a coalition led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates launched an ill-fated war on Houthi-led rebel forces in Yemen, inaugurating what the United Nations has described as the world’s worst humanitarian catastrophe. Mohammed bin Salman, or MBS as he’s known, the architect of the Saudi war effort, asserted that it would be a short conflict, with a swift Saudi victory. The Obama administration, which apparently believed MBS’s claims, supported the war effort with tens of billions of dollars in arms sales and logistical support. Six years later, bin Salman’s prediction of a short war seems like a cruel joke, and the continued US role in supporting the Saudi/UAE coalition is unconscionable.

Mar 30 05:38

Mohammed bin Salman has lost the war in Yemen. It's time to end the humanitarian disaster

This week, Saudi Arabia announced an initiative to end the Yemen war and implement a nationwide ceasefire. The move was met with rejection by the Ansar Allah group, known as the Houthis, the main protagonists on the other side of this six-year-old conflict.

The proposal, according to the Houthis, didn’t promise the total lifting of the blockade imposed by the Saudis on Sanaa international airport and Hodeidah port, which, with Saleef port, handle about 80 percent of Yemen’s imports including staples and fuel.

The Houthis are now on the offensive and are unlikely to retreat or surrender. It is most likely that they will continue their offensive in Marib and sweep the shrinking territories and fragile authority of the Riyadh-based exiled President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi.

On Wednesday, Jawad Zarif, the Iranian foreign minister, said Iran backed a peace plan that would end the blockade and violence.

Mar 30 04:26

Bahrain police threaten detained children with rape

For the past decade February has become a holy month for the majority of the people in Bahrain and a horrible month for the throne in Manama.

For ten years, February has been the month of protest against systematic injustice, brutality and lack of freedom.

The nation has long been yearning for democratic reforms but what it has had so far are intensified state repression and increasing cases of human rights violations.

Many dissidents and opposition leaders have been imprisoned, executed or faced exile.

Bahrain's 2011 uprising was short-lived due to the military intervention of Saudi and Emirati forces that cracked down on the popular and peaceful protests.

Any objection is still responded to with iron-fist security strategies, carried out through the brutal police and dependent judiciary.

Adult protestors are treated like terrorists and minor protestors are treated like adults.

The way the Bahraini police treat protesting children is monstrous by any standard.

Mar 30 04:24

Photo gallery: Sufferings of Yemenis continue amid ongoing war

A photo gallery was organized in the Yemeni capital Sana'a to view examples of the difficulties facing Yemenis amid the continued siege imposed by the Saudi-led coalition.

The health sector is heavily affected by the ongoing Saudi siege. Recently, many health facilities have warned that the incubators may stop working completely within days due to the severe fuel shortage and lack of power, putting the lives of infants at risk.

Saudi Arabia, backed by Washington, launched a devastating war on Yemen in March 2015, killing tens of thousands of civilians, mostly women and children, and imposed an all-out blockade on the country, depriving millions of Yemenis of their basic needs.

Yemenis say the United Nations bears responsibility for the lives of millions of civilians, including infants, as it remains silent toward the Saudi crimes against the war-ravaged nation.

Mar 25 05:30

‘Death Falling From the Sky’: Report Spotlights Civilian Harm From US Drone Strikes in Yemen

A report published Tuesday by Yemeni human rights defenders examines dozens of casualties resulting from U.S. drone strikes and other attacks on civilians in the war-torn nation in recent years, incidents the publication says often occur without accountability, investigation, compensation – and sometimes even acknowledgment.

The report – entitled Death Falling From the Sky: Civilian Harm from the United States’ Use of Lethal Force in Yemen (pdf) – was published by Mwatana for Human Rights. It covers a dozen US military operations conducted between January 2017 and January 2019, a period during which then-President Donald Trump loosened the military’s rules of engagement that were meant to protect civilians.

Mar 23 06:57

Saudi Arabia Bombs Grain Port in Yemen

The US-backed Saudi-led coalition continues to launch airstrikes across Yemen. Over the past few days, Saudi bombs have hit the capital Sanaa, Maarib province, and the Red Sea port of Salif.

On Monday, the UN said the airstrikes in Salif targeted a grain port and hit a warehouse and the living quarters of a food production company. “Local authorities and company management stated that six injured workers were transferred to local medical facilities for treatment,” the UN mission in Hodeidah, Yemen, said in a statement.

According to the Houthis Al-Masirah, the bombing in Salif killed at least one of the grain company’s workers and injured six more. Salif lies to the northwest of Hodeidah and is inside the UN-brokered neutral zone as per a deal signed in Stockholm in 2018. But bombings around Hodeidah and violations of the Stockholm agreement are a regular occurrence.

Mar 23 05:57

The Six-Year Epic Failure: Riyadh’s Crusade On Yemen

Six years of the Saudi-led war have passed in Yemen, and it keeps going with no sign of a peaceful solution on the horizon. The “occasion” was “commemorated” with a briefing by Ansar Allah, or as they are popularly known – the Houthis. Some impressive numbers were shared.

Houthi spokesperson Yahya Sari said that the Saudi-led coalition carried out more than 266,150 airstrikes throughout these 6 years. The predominant number of those strikes targeted Yemeni citizens, homes, cities and other infrastructure.

On the side of the Houthis, at least 1,348 separate missile operations were launched, with nearly 500 being behind enemy lines on key military facilities of the Kingdom and the UAE. In total, the Houthi Air Force carried out 12,623 raids with drones. In 2021 alone, Ansar Allah has carried out 1,464 operations, including 124 attack operations, and the rest reconnaissance.

Mar 23 05:12

Jordan publicizes defense deal that allows US forces free entry into kingdom

Jordan on Sunday made public a defense agreement with the United States that allows free entry of US forces, aircraft, and vehicles onto the kingdom’s territory.

Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi told parliament that the defense accord was “the fruit of long negotiations.”

The agreement was signed in January and the government approved it last month, but, in an exceptional move, it bypassed parliament. The royal decree was published in the official journal this week.

Mar 22 11:16

Joe Biden’s heartfelt illogic about Israel

Lawrence Davidson argues that in contrast to his domestic policies, US President Biden's foreign policy in the Middle East in general and towards Israel in particular is not only stale and worn out, but is also riddled with hypocrisy and contradictions. >>

Mar 22 07:31

Recruited, Arrested, On Trial: Yemeni Spies Tell of Their Reluctant Work for CIA, MI6

There is little dispute that the United States and the United Kingdom have been major benefactors to the Saudi Kingdom in its six-year-long attempt to use military might to bring Yemen to heel. Both countries have provided billions in hi-tech weapons, intelligence information, and training to what is arguably the Middle East’s most repressive monarchy. But according to the confessions of six men arrested last month amid the ongoing battle over Yemen’s strategic Marib province, Western support for the Saudi-led Coalition goes much farther than conventional military support.

Arrested Yemeni spies speak to MintPress

Mar 21 07:42

UAE angered over Netanyahu’s exploitation of normalization deal, cancels summit with Israel, US

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has canceled an event with Israel and the US, accusing Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu of exploiting the normalization deal and using Crown Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed’s commitment as an election ploy to boost his chances in upcoming Israeli general elections.

The UAE, the US, and Israel and leaders from Arab states that have normalised relations with Tel Aviv had planned to organize an April summit to celebrate Israel’s normalization agreement with Sudan. The event was canceled after the UAE officials expressed their frustration with Netanyahu's electioneering.

This is the first big crisis between the UAE and Israel since the two sides announced the normalization of relations last August.

Netanyahu had touted his role in Israel’s normalization deals as a key component of his campaign strategy, announcing that the UAE would invest $10 billion in Israel.

Mar 21 04:17

Uncertain of US intentions, four allies exercise their naval muscle

This month, France and Cyprus for the first time joined Israel and Greece in a combined naval exercise in the Eastern Mediterranean and Cretan Sea. French participation was notable in that it marked yet another step in its growing naval cooperation with Israel.

This month’s exercise, entitled “Noble Dina,” took place off Cyprus and involved not only counterterrorism, search and rescue and anti-submarine drills, but also a simulated sea battle. As the Israeli military spokesman confirmed, the focus was “not only on surface exercises, but also multi-threat exercise of air and underwater and surface threats.”

There is no mistaking which country is the source of those “challenges and threats.” Each of the four states involved in the exercise has clashed with Turkey in the recent past. In the case of Israel, Greece and Cyprus, friction with Ankara is a result of competing claims to gas deposits in the Eastern Mediterranean.

Mar 20 06:49

Yemen’s Houthis Take Key Mountain, Advance on Maarib

Weeks of fighting over the north Yemen city of Maarib, the last government stronghold in North Yemen, was supposedly all but over. The military claimed to have reversed the momentum not so long ago, and were looking to move against the Houthis.

Instead, the Houthis have counterattacked, seizing Mount Hilan, overlooking Maarib, and are now making a substantial advance on the city. The UN is calling for an end, warning of humanitarian catastrophe.

Yemen, particularly in the north, just lurches from one humanitarian catastrophe to another, though it seems to be mentioned chiefly when it is the rebels on the advance, and not the Saudi-backed government.

Mar 19 08:28

Biden Must Pressure Saudi Arabia To End The War On Yemen

Give President Joe Biden some credit. He pulled the U.S. back from supporting Saudi Arabia’s six-plus year campaign of murder and mayhem against Yemen, one of the world’s poorest nations. The Obama and Trump administrations made Americans accomplices to Saudi aggression and war crimes. The Biden administration should end all military assistance in any form for Riyadh as long as the latter is involved in the conflict.

Modern Yemen has been convulsed by unrest and war for most of its six decades of existence. (Two states emerged in the 1960s and merged in 1990.) In the 2000s Ansar Allah, widely known as the Houthis, battled the government led by President Ali Abdullah Saleh, who was backed by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. In 2012 he was overthrown during the Arab Spring and replaced by his vice president, Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi. Two years later Saleh and the Houthis joined to defenestrate Hadi, which prompted Saudi and Emirati military intervention.

Mar 19 06:45

Afghanistan: How Long Must This Go On?

The United States military and mercenary forces need to leave Afghanistan now.
Note: Does anyone remember why we are there in the first place!
The Cactus Moon is crying!

Mar 17 06:49

Six Years Later, Yemen Is Still Being Starved

The people of Yemen have been enduring a six-year siege ever since the beginning of the U.S.-backed Saudi coalition’s intervention. The coalition’s indiscriminate bombing campaign has claimed thousands of innocent Yemeni lives, but the more destructive and insidious side of the war has been the blockade and the economic warfare that has accompanied it. At least 130,000 Yemeni civilians have died as a result of starvation and disease since the intervention started. That is more than have been killed by shells and bombs, and that number is set to grow substantially as the country once again faces a famine created by the war and blockade. Tens of thousands already live in famine conditions, and hundreds of thousands more may join them unless the blockade is brought to an end.

Mar 16 07:25

The State Department Is Now Warning Of Impending Drone Attacks And How To Survive Them

Today the U.S. Embassy in Saudi Arabia's capital Riyadh issued an alert that seemed ripped right from a dystopian action movie. A tweet from @TravelGov, an official U.S. State Department account that highlights travel and other alerts from diplomatic missions around the world, read "#SaudiArabia: The Embassy is tracking reports of possible missiles or drones that may be headed toward Riyadh today, October 28. Stay alert. If you hear a loud explosion or if sirens are activated, immediately seek cover."

Mar 16 06:50

Biden Can Trigger A Regional War By Reviving The Nuclear Deal

The Biden administration, deep down, unfortunately seems to wish to forge ahead with its agenda to revive the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) -- also known as the Iran nuclear deal, which, incidentally, Iran never signed -- and subsequently to lift sanctions against Tehran.

Mar 16 05:59

Joe Biden Is Following a Blueprint for Forever War

Last week, the U.S. military bombed a site near al-Hurri, along the Iraqi border inside Syria, where Iranian-backed Iraqi militias were allegedly stationed. Although the U.S. launched its missiles across an international border (and without the approval of Congress), White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki framed the strike as a ?“defensive” response to a series of rocket attacks that have killed one and wounded several Americans over the past two weeks. The American bombing left ?“up to a handful dead,” according to one U.S. official who spoke with CNN, and Tehran condemned the assault as ?“illegal and a violation of Syria’s sovereignty”?—?a perception gap certain to complicate President Joe Biden’s pronounced plans to reverse Donald Trump’s antagonistic Iran policies and rejoin the nuclear deal.

Mar 12 07:36

UAE Ambassador Screamed at Member of Congress Pushing to End Yemen War

Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba was so angry about Rep. Ro Khanna’s push to end U.S. support for the war in Yemen that he shouted at him during a meeting, said Khanna.

Khanna, the lead sponsor of a war powers resolution aimed at ending U.S. involvement in the Yemen war, led by Saudi Arabia and the UAE, said that he was startled by the diplomat’s approach. “I’ve never had an ambassador of another country come to my office and literally yell at me, but that’s what I had with the ambassador to UAE,” Khanna said during an interview for The Intercept’s podcast Deconstructed, referring to Otaiba.

“I was just taken away,” Khanna said. “It led me to think that there’s a real arrogance, a real sense of entitlement, a sense that he thought himself so powerful that he could act that way. And I’ve never really seen that before.”

Mar 10 11:38

U.S. AIRCRAFT CARRIER DEPLOYS IN MEDITERRANEAN AS DAMASCUS PREPARES TO PUSH ON THE NORTHWEST

The USS Dwight D. Eisenhower aircraft carrier and its Carrier Strike Group have entered the Mediterranean Sea.

This makes it, currently, the closest aircraft carrier to the Middle East. It has been quite a while since the US hasn’t had one of its super warships deployed in or near the Persian Gulf.

Starting in the spring of 2019, the U.S. Navy has been publicly ordered to keep a near-constant presence in the region, as if this were something new.

US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin announced that a global posture review is taking place, and it would be reconsidered whether a carrier was even needed in the region. Still, the Mediterranean Sea is quite nearby, and the removal of the Carrier Strike Group (CSG) from the Persian Gulf was a political move.

It’s Lloyd Austin’s dream to have a CSG in every hotspot in the world, but resources don’t allow for that.

Mar 10 10:41

Saturday Night Live joke versus Israeli behaviour

Lawrence Davidson explains the relationship between the tribal basis of Israel – artificially manipulated through incessant propaganda and organised miseducation – and the inability of Israelis and other Zionists to take a joke, as shown most recently on the US TV programme Saturday Night Live.>>

Mar 09 06:52

Winds of Change: Israel Joins the US Central Command Area

On the eve of a new administration in Washington, the Pentagon announced the transfer of Israel from the US European Command (EUCOM) to the Central Command (CENTCOM). Like the Abraham Accords, this decision brought to the surface deep, discreet, and longstanding relations between the parties, in this case the IDF and CENTCOM. It reflects a substantive change in the region, and will facilitate greater cooperation between Israel, the US, and other states in the Command. What significance is there to this development, and what are its implications?

Mar 03 08:47

U.N. Falls Short Of Yemen Aid Target As Governments Cut Donations

United Nations officials are calling on the international community to send aid to the thousands of people dying of starvation in Yemen.

The intergovernmental organization said that nearly 50,000 Yemenis have already starved to death while 16 million more are expected to go hungry this year.

The secretary general of the Norwegian Refugee Council, Jan Egeland, said that Yemen is expected to experience a massive famine not seen since Ethiopia in the 1980s.

The United Nations reportedly held an emergency meeting on Monday to raise funds for humanitarian aid missions to the Western Asian nation. The organization reportedly did not hit its target of $3.85 billion as most countries were forced to cut back on donations because of the pandemic.

Feb 28 09:11

More tribes strike non-aggression agreements with advancing army, allies in Yemen’s Ma’rib

More major Yemeni tribes have signed non-aggression agreements with advancing Yemeni army troops and allies in the strategic central province of Ma’rib.

Lebanese Arabic-language al-Akhbar newspaper, citing local sources, reported that elders from Ubaidah, Murad, Jahm and Jadaan tribes took the decision as the Yemeni armed forces and allied fighters from Popular Committees are pulling the plug on Saudi mercenaries loyal to Yemen's former president Abd Rabbuh Mansur in Ma’rib.

Accordingly, a number of senior sheikhs from Ma’rib, whose tribes have struck peace deals with Yemen’s Sana’a-based National Salvation Government, held a meeting in the capital and stressed the need for the liberation of the region.

Feb 28 07:06

60 Killed as Yemen Govt Tries to Push Into Northern Yemen City

Fighting continues to rage in northern Yemen’s Maarib Province, but while they were focusing on the last government-held outpost for weeks, the Maarib Dam, the shift has turned and now government forces are trying to attack the city of Hazm.

Escalation of Saudi airstrikes is the big game-changer here, first stalling the bloody fight in Maarib, and now trying to bolster the counter-offensive. At least 60 fighters were killed Friday, roughly double normal daily tolls in recent weeks.

As usual, the high death toll doesn’t mean anything tangible changed on the ground, at most some vague claims of changing momentum, and no territory actually changing hands.

Feb 26 13:12

Kamala Harris Is FURIOUS Because No One Informed Her Of Syrian Airstrike Plan

Vice President Kamala Harris was NOT informed prior to the Syrian airstrike and is reportedly “very upset about being left of of the loop,” per a White House official.

On Thursday, the U.S. has carried out an airstrike on a structure connected to an Iran-backed militia in Syria, following three separate rocket attacks against U.S. forces in Iraq.

Feb 26 10:47

Mystery explosion rips through Israeli ship in Gulf of Oman –hours after US attack on Iran

AN ISRAELI owned cargo ship has been hit by a mystery explosion just hours after the US targeted Iranian supported militia in Syria with airstrikes.

The Helios Bay was hit as it passed through the Gulf of Oman early on Friday.

No casualties have been reported and no nation or group has claimed responsibility.

The US accused Iran of responsibility after expositions hit a number of ships in the Gulf of Oman during 2019.

Feb 26 10:36

Beyond Oil: How UAE's HOPE Mars Mission Is Breaking The Arab World Out Of Its 'Crisis Of Scarcity'

The Emiratis understand that their economy, primarily based in oil revenue, though presently lucrative, is a short-term prosperity. A future that is dependent on oil is unstable and unkind, it is not a reliable resource for an advancing economy.

Something truly remarkable happened on Feb. 9th, 2021, which I fear has not been fully comprehended by most of the Western hemisphere in terms of its massive implications as a game-changer in geopolitics for the Middle East.

Here in the West, we have become accustomed to our jaded denigration of space exploration. It appears to many, that space exploration is just a charade or if of real consequence, is understood as an extension of geopolitics, the imperialistic conquest and militarisation of space.

It is for this very reason that the UAE’s story for why they decided to create their Hope (or Amal in Arabic) mission to Mars is so very striking against this politically cynical foreground.

Feb 26 08:39

6,500 ASIAN WORKERS DIED BUILDING FIFA WORLD CUP 2022 STADIUMS IN QATAR

Deaths of more than 6,500 South Asian workers has been reported in Qatar building stadiums for the FIFA World Cup 2022 from 2011 to 2020. An average of 12 migrant workers died each week in 2011 to 2020. The sources suggest slack safety protocols surrounding construction of stadiums and infrastructure in Qatar were the reason for these deaths.
Qatar was awarded the FIFA World Cup 2022 hosting in 2010 and death of migrant workers has been reported since then.

An average of 12 migrant workers died each week in 2011 to 2020. The sources suggest slack safety protocols surrounding construction of stadiums and infrastructure in Qatar were the reason for these deaths.

These migrant workers were from Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and India. Government data from these countries reported 5,927 deaths and the Pakistan Embassy in Qatar further reported 824 deaths.

Feb 26 08:21

British Ship Hit by Explosion in Gulf of Oman, UKMTO Says

The incident occurred at 20:40 GMT on Thursday, the United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations (UKMTO) said without providing further details.

A ship was hit by an explosion in the Gulf of Oman on Thursday, the UKMTO said on Friday.

"Investigations are ongoing. Vessel and crew are safe...Vessels transiting the area are advised to exercise caution," the notice reads.
The UKMTO did not give details on the possible cause of the explosion.

Feb 26 08:17

Israel, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, UAE Reportedly Mull Joint Defence Alliance

Recently, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that Israel would “do everything” to prevent Tehran from getting hold of nuclear weapons.

Israel is in talks with Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates to establish a four-nation defence alliance, i24NEWS reported.

Although Israel doesn’t have official diplomatic relations with Saudi Arabia, it has had ties with Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates since they signed the Abraham Accords normalisation deal.

Feb 26 08:06

Yemenis stage nationwide protests against Saudi blockade

Tens of thousands of people have staged rallies across Yemen in protest at the all-out Saudi blockade and closure of Sana’a International Airport, which have made it impossible for food and medical supplies to reach the poor in the war-torn country.

Protesters took to the streets in the Damt district of the southern Yemeni province of Dhale on Friday morning in a rally entitled “The Siege of the Coalition of Aggression is Killing Yemeni People.”

They chanted slogans against the United States and the Israeli regime for supporting the Saudi blockade of war-wracked Yemen.

Elsewhere in the southeastern province of Dhamar, Yemeni demonstrators marched on the United Nations office, urging the world body to intervene and lift the brutal siege.

People in Sha’ara area of the mountainous northwestern province of Sa’ada also censured the suffering of the Yemeni people as a result of the tight Saudi-led aerial and naval blockade.

Feb 26 07:42

US Brings Israel into CENTCOM, The US Military’s Command in the Middle East

he move formalizes regular military exercises among the US, Israel and Arab states, which is “crucial for developing effective theater missile defenses, as well as boosting readiness and interoperability in cyber, counterterrorism, special operations, and maritime security.”

Though the move will take some time to go into effect, the Pentagon’s recent decision to relocate Israel to the area of responsibility (AOR) of the US military’s Central Command (CENTCOM, which operates in the Middle East) is a direct operational reflection of the Abraham Accords, in which Israel normalized relations with the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, with Saudi support.

The head of CENTCOM, General Kenneth F. McKenzie, recently told the Middle East Institute,

“We do a lot of business with Israel now just as a practical matter of fact because their threats generally emanate from the east. In a certain way, this is just a natural recognition of that at the operational level.”

Feb 25 08:50

Video: The Fight in Yemen, The Houthis Are Pushing Towards Marib City

The fighting in Yemen, similarly to other battlefields in the Middle East is heating up in 2021.

The Ansar Allah, or the Houthis, as they are colloquially known, have began pushing towards Marib city. The province and the settlement itself are the last Saudi-led coalition stronghold in the relatively calm central region. If Marib city is captured by the Houthis, they would be allowed to carry out even more attacks and operations in Saudi Arabia’s southern regions. These regions are largely depopulated because of the war that Riyadh and its allies began almost 6 years ago.

Feb 25 07:50

Ma’rib battle: Yemeni army close to retaking city from Saudi-led forces

Victory appears to be on the horizon in the heated battle for Yemen’s strategic central province of Ma’rib as army troops, backed by allied fighters from Popular Committees, have reportedly taken control of most areas there and dislodged Saudi-led coalition forces and Riyadh-backed militants from those regions.

A Yemeni military source, speaking on condition of anonymity, told the Arabic service of Russia’s Sputnik news agency that Yemeni soldiers and their allies had encircled Ma’rib city, following weeks of fierce clashes with Saudi-led coalition forces and their mercenaries.

The source added that Yemeni forces had cut off the main supply route into the eastern flank of Ma’rib, which leads to the Arab country’s largest province of Hadhramaut.

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