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Nuclear war on the horizon
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: Nuclear war on the horizon
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: 25/04/2012 @ 09:06
NATO war games in the Arctic

Under some pretext, NATO troops remained for several days on the territory of northern Norway and Sweden, for war games, called Exercise Cold Response 2012. These maneuvers, carried out in mid-March, involved more than 16,000 military, naval and aircraft vessels of the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, France and the Netherlands, among other nations, until it totaled 14 members of the Atlantic Alliance.      
By Pablo Osoria Ramirez *      
According to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the objective of this research was training for military actions in conditions of conflict and possible terrorist acts.      
Terrorists in the Arctic?      
Analysts doubt their true motives, since in the Arctic there are none of these stated preconceptions justifying military activity.      
For the Russian expert on security issues, Igor Korotchenko, this military activity should be considered solely through the prism of the strengthening of NATO's military presence in the Arctic.      
For his part, he maintains that the real objective is the future allocation of natural resources in the region.      
He said that the organization seeks to "show their muscles," with the desire to consolidate its efforts with geopolitical and diplomatic support via firepower.      
In turn, Vladimir Evseiev, an expert on international relations at the Russian Academy of Sciences, warns that "operations carried out on the territory of Norway and Sweden are two steps from the borders of this Eurasian state," he added.      
These exercises, says the observer, could be done on the territory of Canada, but for many, at the chosen place, it could be considered as a provocation, he thought.      
Stance of Russia      
In this sense, says Korotchenko, Moscow is carefully following the sequences of the Atlantic alliance's military activity in the Arctic Circle.      
He recalled that, at present, two new brigades are being created in Arctic Russia, which will be able to work with mobility in the region, especially where required by the interests of the country, he added.      
The proposal of the Eurasian state lies in the resolving by peaceful means possible territorial disputes through dialogue backed diplomacy rather than force of war.      
The Kremlin opposes the militarization of the Arctic and proposes to convert the area into one of the key platforms of economic and scientific cooperation between Arctic and non-Artic countries: Russia, Canada, United States, Norway and Denmark.      
However, Russian authorities do not give up the planned renovation of the country's defensive potential in several regions, including the Nordic seas.      
The treasure of the Arctic      
According to European media outlets, there are no terrorists in the Arctic, but huge reserves of gas, oil, gold and diamonds.      
It also has a great potential to develop air and sea routes.      
Scientists predict that global warming and the continuing melting of ice will place the treasure of the icy northern ocean accessible to discovery.      
According to an analysis of the radio channel, Voice of Russia, this perspective has raised disputes between the states aspiring to the continental shelf of the Arctic, including member nations of NATO.      
The latest war games of the Alliance were headed by the British aircraft carrier, HMS Illustrious, a base of eight combat helicopters and a crew of nearly a thousand people, including memberss of the Naval Forces.      
The maneuvers took place amid strong winds which lowered the temperature to minus 40 degrees Centigrade, conditions that, according to the NATO, caused operations to be put in neutral several times.      
* Osoria Pablo Ramirez is the head of Prensa Latina, Europe       
Translated from the Portuguese version by:               
Lisa Karpova, Pravda.Ru      
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: 30/04/2012 @ 09:00
Iran decodes spy plane data

Iran decodes data from unmanned American aircraft RQ170

Iran has managed to successfully decode all data on the RQ170 U.S. spy plane, captured by Iranian forces, the commander of the Navy Corps of the Guardians of the Islamic Revolution of Iran (IRGC), Rear Admiral Ali Fadavi, said on Sunday.

Iran has decoded all data pertaining to operations and tasks recorded in the memory of the aircraft, said the Persian military.

"The task was not easy.   We had to decode a bunch of numbers and codes, but we have all the information that was recorded in its memory, including protocols, repairs and sorties (the actual number of hours flown for each output).   For example, data from one of the flights after repairs in 2010 or the deployment of unmanned aircraft during the operation against Taliban insurgents, particularly Osama bin Laden in Pakistan" detailed Admiral Fadavi

On December 4, 2011, Electronic Warfare Units and Air Defense of the Islamic Republic of Iran captured, with minimal damage, an unmanned American spy plane in the skies over the Persian country.

The aircraft, designed and developed by the U.S. company, Lockheed Martin, had crossed the airspace of Iran on the border with neighboring Afghanistan.

Finally, the commander of the Navy has criticized the presence of extra-regional forces in the Persian Gulf and stressed that "the Islamic Republic has a great command over the entire Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz."
Translated from the Portuguese version by:                  
Lisa Karpova, Pravda.Ru
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: 12/05/2012 @ 16:16
Russia needs missile defense system in Latin American states

A meeting on the deployment of U.S. missile defense system in Europe organized by Russia has ended in failure. NATO officials watched the videos about their defense knocking out Russian missiles, the Defense Ministry once again explained that the European missile defense is a threat to Russia, and promised to attack preemptively should the need arise. Is it time we move from a dull hopeless defense to offense?

The meeting held in early May in Moscow was doomed to failure because of the reluctance of NATO to cancel their plans of deploying mobile missile defense system in Europe. At the summit to be held in Chicago on May 21-24, NATO will announce that the first of four planned stages has reached its operational capability. This means the involvement of naval combat information and multi-function control system Aegis in the Mediterranean Sea. The system is equipped with a radar range of 400 kilometers and interceptor missiles SM-3 (Block 1). This system will interact with the early-warning radar system in Turkey.

At the second stage, according to Assistant U.S. Secretary of Defense Madeleine Kridon, Washington will set the interceptor missiles in Romania (Block IIA), at the third - in Poland (Block IIB) while building the Aegis group in the Mediterranean and northern seas. These missiles are estimated to not be able to reach Russia, the zone of destruction is 250 kilometers, and their purpose, indeed, is the compensation of threats from Iran.

But at the fourth stage after 2018, as expected, the system will be modified (SM-3 Block IIB), and the zone of destruction would include intercontinental missiles "Topol" and heavy missiles deployed between Moscow and the Urals. It is these rockets of new generation that will bring down Russian "Topol" in the case of a retaliatory nuclear strike against the United States. Therefore, the Chief of General Staff Nikolai Makarov in the presence of representatives of 50 countries threatened that "in the event of a crisis Russia would deal preemptive strikes against targets in Poland and other Eastern European countries." This is an excellent statement, but too hypothetical, since there is no crisis or missiles yet.

Both sides are waiting for new approaches. Thus, a political analyst Sergei Markov told The Christian Science Monitor: "We believe that the U.S. could implement its plan, but it will lead to a new arms race, so they must return to the table with fresh approaches." What are these approaches for Russia? This would be the acceptance of proposals for a joint participation in the U.S. missile defense system and the admission of the Russian command to the "trigger" or separation of the tracking zones, which would prevent the United States or NATO from scanning the territory of Russia. But these approaches are unacceptable and will never be allowed by the Americans because Russia is not their ally, and it cannot be given a veto power. Indeed, missiles fired from Iran or Korea would probably cross the Russian territory, but they cannot rely on the Russians in this case.

The second Russian request for a legally binding treaty on the European missile defense not directed against Russia is also unrealistic. How would the Americans agree to this if they really are afraid of the restoration of the "evil empire"? Iran's horror story and al-Qaeda have been "arranged" by them after the collapse of the Soviet Union to justify the existence of a giant military-industrial complex of the U.S., ensuring their strategic interests in the world, and above all - the access to oil and gas. But Russia is still perceived as the enemy number one - this was recently stated by a Republican Mitt Romney.

What are the new approaches of the Americans? They are not more realistic. Richard Weitz, Senior Fellow at the Hudson Institute, places high hopes on the return of Putin to presidency. According to him, in 2001 (after September 11) he made a "realistic choice" and "supported" the proposal of President Bush to waive the provisions of the ABM Treaty of 1972 to avoid the destruction of perceived new partnerships in Russia and the United States in combating international terrorism. Putin, who suspended the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe of 1990, is very different today. The hope for a return of the "realistic" Putin is as utopian as a joint missile defense system.

Incidentally, this issue was discussed a decade ago. "Creation of a strategically significant missile defense system with NATO is utopian. To prevent the missile strike on the territory of Russia, we, whether we like it or not, in the future will have to create while simplistic, but a duplicate of our own national missile defense system," Andrei Shmygin wrote in his article American defense: attack on Russia. Judging by the agitation in the Russian military circles, these days it is economically realistic, but then, in 2001, the Americans, offering a joint missile defense system, were not completely honest, knowing that a weak Russia did not have the money for it.

Of course, the U.S. will deploy a defense system in Europe without any guarantees for Russia. In this sense, the statement by the Chief of General Staff Makarov that Moscow "did not trust Washington on missile defense" is naive. When can the United States generally be trusted in the matters of military confrontation? But the Americans have their own issues. According to U.S. analysts, even the first unit has functional problems, particularly in the identification and tracking of warheads. Second, the NATO is no longer an alliance. There were problems in Afghanistan, Libya, and they exist on the issue of European defense both politically, and financially.

The situation is also unfavorable for the United States. The public debt and unemployment are on the rise, the Republican Congress often does not support the Democratic president. Many innovations at the fourth stage are frozen, for example, the program that would create a space interceptors and Airborne Laser. Therefore, the embodiment of plans for the implementation of a dangerous step for Russia is delayed for ten years.

Then, if we run the hypothetical situation, why the Russian side does not adopt a new one? Having read the American press that considers the "trump card" of the Russian Defense Ministry - a film about choking of the Russian nuclear attack on the U.S. - as a manifestation of fear, one realizes the urgency of the need to change the strategy.

This brings to mind a demarche of Khrushchev, who, in response to the deployment of U.S. missiles in Turkey, secretly ferried Soviet missiles in Cuba. Of course, the world has experienced unpleasant moments, but the Americans have to respect Russia as a full partner. Today, the world will not be on the brink of a war if Russia develops a plan for a missile defense of its allies in Latin America, for example, from the consequences of a possible conflict between Britain and Argentina. Who are Russia's allies if not Chavez and Ortega, who, without hesitation, acknowledged the independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia? Now is the opportune moment to seek an ally in Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner. The idea is not as absurd as it may seem at first.

Find another option, but change the tactics of negotiations with the defense on the offensive and start creating Russian defense near the borders of the United States, especially since we are talking about ship systems. In addition, the U.S. spends three times more to protect its advanced bases and allies than their own territory. This is stated, for example, by Baker Spring in The Cutting Edge. The Americans must be forced to pay attention to their borders.

In this sense, articulated responses to the placement of the latest Russian air-defense (radar, "Iskander," ships in the waters of the Baltic Sea and Mediterranean Sea) are a good and appropriate response, but temporary and presenting no threat to NATO. "Space" project of Rogozin is also unrealistic and prohibitive.

Lyuba Lulko, Pravda.Ru         
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: 14/05/2012 @ 17:54
Fabricating lies to wage war on Iran


By Stephen Lendman

Turning Iran into a reliable pro-Western puppet state is a long-sought US goal. All options are considered, including war.

Tactics include calling Iran a threat to world peace, falsely accusing Tehran of terrorist attacks, and fabricating lies about an alleged nuclear weapons program despite no corroborating evidence whatever.

Focusing largely on defense and security issues, the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) advances US interests "to sustain American prominence and prosperity as a force for good in the world." It's closely connected to high level administration, congressional, and Pentagon officials.

Its trustees include top corporate and former high level political ones. They include Henry Kissinger, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Brent Scowcroft, Richard Armitage, Harold Brown, William S. Cohen, and William E. Brock.

On May 7, CSIS national security analyst Anthony Cordesman issued a report titled "Rethinking Our Approach to Iran's Search for the Bomb." He chose a road previously traveled, saying:

"We badly need to rethink our approach to Iran's nuclear programs. We are putting far too much emphasis on Iran's nuclear efforts without considering how these programs fit into Iran's over military and strategic objectives."

"At the same time, we are placing too much emphasis on whether Iran has revived its formal nuclear program and the current shape of its nuclear facilities."

Iran has advanced "far beyond the point where it lacked the technology base to produce nuclear weapons...."

"Iran has pursued every major area of nuclear weapons development, has carried out programs that have already given it every component of a weapon except fissile material, and there is strong evidence that it has carried out programs to integrate a nuclear warhead on to its missiles."

"The threat Iran's nuclear efforts pose" go way beyond its uranium enrichment capability. Its programs "have been examined in depth in recent reports by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)."

Its unclassified reports "clearly outline just how far Iran may have gotten."

In May 2011, IAEA alleged seven areas of concern, including:

(1) Neutron generator and associated diagnostics experiments.

(2) Uranium conversion and metallurgy capability to produce nuclear device components.

(3) High explosives manufacture and testing.

(4) Exploding bridgewire (EBW) detonator studies with possible nuclear significance.

(5) Experiments related to hemispherical high explosive charges.

(6) High voltage firing equipment tests over long distances and possibly underground.

(7) Missile re-entry vehicle studies pertaining to spherical nuclear payloads.

In November 2011, IAEA claimed:

"The Agency has serious concerns regarding possible military dimensions to Iran's nuclear program. After assessing carefully and critically the extensive information available to it, the Agency finds the information to be, overall, credible."

"The information indicates that Iran has carried out activities relevant to the development of a nuclear explosive device. The information also indicates that prior to the end of 2003, these activities took place under a structured program, and that some activities may still be ongoing."

Cordesman believes Iran maintains an ongoing nuclear weapons program. He cites IAEA reports as evidence. Official Tehran denials are false, he claims. His analysis states:

Despite sanctions and close monitoring, Iran received highly specialized instruments and equipment. Its scientific expertise is well advanced. It's able to conduct nuclear device tests. Preparations were made for them.

Iran is well advanced on multiple nuclear development fronts. IAEA monitoring suggests but hasn't detected them. Attacking its facilities won't prevent continuation of its program. Only multiple strikes perhaps can succeed.

"No assessment of Iran's military behavior, and its level of interest in nuclear weapons, should however, ignore the fact that nuclear weapons represent a key part of its overall strategic and military goals and force posture."

Tehran won't abandon its efforts. It believes a nuclear capability is its best defense. It may have advanced beyond the point of reversing it. America and Israel must structure their diplomatic and military options with these considerations in mind.

Cordesman bases his analysis on falsified IAEA claims. Previous articles discussed them. They stressed that US intelligence assessments through March 2012 found no evidence of Iranian nuclear weapons development.

Neither did former IAEA head Mohamed ElBaradei during his December 1, 1997 - November 30, 2009 tenure. He carefully avoided baseless anti-Iranian charges.

In October 2009, the Agency leaked a document titled "Possible Dimensions of Iran's Nuclear Program" to the New York Times. At issue was circumventing ElBaradei. Allegations in it were spurious. As a result, he refused to endorse it.

Two months later, Washington replaced him with Yukiya Amano. In December 2010, the London Guardian published a leaked US embassy cable saying he's "director general of all states, but in agreement with us." Its title was: "Amano ready for prime time."

A November 2010 Guardian article headlined, "Nuclear Wikileaks: Cables show cosy US relationship with (new) IAEA chief." State Department official Geoffrey Pyatt was quoted, saying:

Amano will "overcome bureaucratic inertia (and) modernize Agency operations...." He's "solidly in the US court on every key strategic decision, from high-level personnel appointments to the handling of Iran's alleged nuclear weapons program."

A July 2010 Pratt cable called replacing El Baradei "a once-a-decade opportunity.... to position the new director general for strong leadership from the DG's office."

Amano hasn't disappointed. Through conjecture, dubious intelligence, and false allegations, he claims Iran's nuclear program has "possible military dimensions."

Evidence supposedly came from a dubious laptop smuggled out of the country. "Laptop" is code language for suspect unnamed sources. Alleged documents weren't made public.

Amano's reports were based on forged, long ago discredited, discounted, or nonexistent ones. Nothing new in them was revealed. Material from 2004 and earlier was manipulated to look current.

Using identical information, US intelligence and ElBaradei reached opposite conclusions. Amano manipulated, twisted, hyped, and misused material. Other alleged evidence was fabricated to look real.

Cordesman and others bought it. Their analysis is inaccurate and flawed. Doing so plays a dangerous game. CSIS has close ties to top Washington and Pentagon officials.

Cordesman's voice is heard. His report gives war advocates more justification to wage it. Doing so follows a familiar pattern of lies, deception, and hyped fear. This time the potential consequences are devastating.

Besides irradiating widespread areas inside and beyond Iran's borders, embroiling the entire region may result. General war involving China and Russia could follow.

Risks this great should be avoided at all costs. Wars are never the right option. Waging them assures endless violence and destruction.

This one should give Washington's most belligerent hawks pause. If nuclear bunker busters are used, a potential holocaust could follow. Imagine leaders willing to risk it. Imagine the aftermath if they do.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at

His new book is titled "How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized Banking, Government Collusion and Class War"

Visit his blog site at and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.
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: 16/05/2012 @ 15:51
India and Iran strengthen ties

Singh and Ahmadinejad highlight Tehran-New Delhi ties

On Monday, Iran and India chose to deepen ties and the extension of cooperation between the two countries in various fields.

During a telephone conversation between Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, noting their mutual existing capacities, both sides stressed the need for full extension of bilateral relations and increased cooperation between Tehran - New Delhi in various fields.

Ahmadinejad highlighted the deep relationships, friendship, and brotherhood between the two nations and then noted that "Undoubtedly, through closer bilateral cooperation between Tehran and New Delhi, good progress in relations will be attained."

He similarly argued that raising the level of ties and promoting bilateral cooperation will help both countries to establish sustainable peace and security at the regional and global levels.

In this regard, he expressed his hope that through increased contacts and consultations between authorities, the level of joint relations will rise in different fields of science, technology, commerce, economics and energy.

Meanwhile, the Indian Prime Minister said that New Delhi called for cementing its ties with Tehran, as he said, "There are numerous areas in different economic, commercial, and technological sectors, as well as   scientific cooperation for both countries.

It is recalled that bilateral trade between Tehran and New Delhi is estimated at 13.6 billion dollars. Also, 12% of India's imported oil comes from the South Asian country Iran.

HNB / rh / tt

Translated from the Portuguese version by:                  
Lisa Karpova, Pravda.Ru
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: 18/05/2012 @ 17:19
It was US and UK that sank Russia's Kursk submarine

Strategic submarine "Kursk" that sank in 2000 was sunk by the Americans. This theory discussed in Russia and abroad was once again raised by the Polish Wprost, referring to the information allegedly received from the Russian General Staff officer, "Lt. Col. Andrei." According to the authors, the restraint of the Russians made it possible to avoid a full-scale nuclear war.

The fact that "Kursk" perished at the torpedo explosion was adopted as the official theory in Russia. The report of the Prosecutor General of Russia of 2002 stated that the torpedo was a teaching one, and it exploded on its own followed by a detonation of the ammunition.

Almost immediately after the accident a few admirals and officials claimed that "Kursk" was torpedoed by a U.S. submarine stationed in the area of the exercise. Also, some military officials declared that Russian nuclear submarine collided with a foreign submarine.

The first information of any unexpected event that subsequently gets an official legend, as a rule, is the closest to the truth.

The same theory was also developed by French director Jean-Michel Carré in the movie "Kursk": "Submarine in turbid waters," (2005). According to the movie, the Russian submarine was watched by two American submarines "Memphis" and "Toledo." "Toledo" came dangerously close. To prevent an attack of the Russian submarine at "Toledo", "Memphis" allegedly fired Mk-48 torpedo at "Kursk".

According to the Canadian History TV Channel, in the course of surveillance of "Kursk", "Toledo" tried to come closer, but by chance ran into the Russian nuclear submarine that was likely performing a maneuver. The captain of "Memphis", thinking that "Kursk" attacked "Toledo" (presumably receiving an acoustic signal to open the torpedo locks), fired at the Russian submarine.

According to "Lieutenant Colonel Andrei", "small submarine AS-15 (apparently, "Kashalot" (Project 1910) - Ed.) quickly discovered "Kursk" after the accident. However, there was no decision on rescue operations - though, as the source claims, there were   divers on board able to operate at depths up to 200 meters. "Kursk" was lying at a depth of 108 meters.

"Kashalots" are among the most secret Russian Navy submarines. To this day, it is unknown whether they obey the Navy command. At least until 1986 (at the time the first submarine of this type was used for three years), they were registered with the GRU.

"We thought that the crew was killed, there was no contact with them," continued lieutenant colonel. "The phone rang, Korabelnikov picked up, listed, turned pale, and murmured:"The U.S. (...) sunk the ship, there will be a war!" Supposedly said Korabelnikov.

Of course, the American side rejected both theories. Against this background, the presence of a British boat "Splendid" in the area was forgotten. In 1986 it encountered a Soviet submarine "Simbirsk" and in 1999 struck at Serbia, and was supposedly scared by "Kursk" surfaced in the Mediterranean.

After the explosion at "Kursk" submarine, it left for repairs at NATO bases.   

The presence of two boats in the area of ​​the crash, along with the harmonization of positions on the force majeure between Moscow, Washington and London, as expected, could cause delays in the rescue operation of the Russian sailors.

Interestingly, it was possible to track down the route of the Americans after the incident, but the situation with the British nuclear submarine has not been clarified.   

The idea of a possible involvement of "Splendid" in the death of "Kursk" concerns the British. The British "Wikipedia" on the page devoted to this boat, made a very voluminous retreat. It argues that the British submarine had nothing to do with the death of the Russian submarine.

"Although the charges were unfounded, the conspiracy theorists have developed them in different directions for a long time," said "Wikipedia".

Indeed, back in 2000, "Nezavisimaya Gazeta" published an opinion of one of the captain divers, according to which "Splendid" submarine found rest next to "Kursk" on the bottom of the Barents Sea, and was blown up during an operation aimed to raise the Russian submarine. The author suggests that we will soon hear of the death or retirement of this submarine.

In October of 2000, according to BBC, 12 nuclear submarines (including all submarines "Swiftsure") were removed from combat duty because of a leak in the cooling system of a nuclear reactor in a boat of Trafalgar class. It is unknown how many boats later returned to the system.

According to "Jane" catalog, the boat was written off in 2004. Although it was the last and the newest boat of project "Swiftsure" (a total of six), it was the first one to be sent to scraps.

It seems that back in 2003 this boat, according to British sources based solely on two small reports of the BBC, "worked" against targets in Iraq. Incidentally, one of these materials clearly presented an interesting image: a sailor taking pictures of "Jolly Roger" from the clearly crumpled "Splendid."

Another dark and tragic story is connected to the absence or presence of the submarine in the Persian Gulf during the war against Iraq.

In the morning of October 4th, 2003, James Forlong, a former journalist and broadcaster of Sky News, was found dead at his home in East Sussex.

He was dismissed from the news service Sky TV after he prepared a false material on the participation of Splendid submarine in combat in Iraq. Attentive staff of the BBC discovered that Splendid submarine at the time allegedly was at the docks, and Forlong used a video from the archive.

Use of archival shots is usual for television. But this time, Forlong, apparently, was very upset and decided to end his life. He never told why he had prepared a fake video of participation of Splendid in the Iraq war.

Anatoly Miranovsky, Pravda.Ru         

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: 19/05/2012 @ 17:58

By John Helmer, Moscow

In the Kremlin corridors under the new management, it is generally acknowledged that one of the stupidest things former President Dmitry Medvedev ever did was to order Russias representative on the UN Security Council to abstain from the vote and veto of the no-fly zone resolution aimed at the Muammar Qaddafi regime in Libya. That was on March 17, 2010. The Russian intelligence services already knew that US and British submarines were in place under the surface of the Mediterranean, ready to fire missiles to start a war that was intended to end in Qaddafis death. It did.

A year later in 2011, when the campaign for Russias parliamentary elections and the presidential succession was under way, that abstention almost ended in the death of Medvedevs chances to stay under President Vladimir Putins protection. He didnt get the nod for a second term as president, but as prime minister he has survived in more lively shape than Qaddafi. However, Russian officials are now unanimous that the ill-fated effort by a Russian leader to allow a war of military intervention and regime change by the US and the NATO alliance, funded by the Arab sheikhdoms, would never be repeated. No matter what Syrias president Bashar Assad does, Russian policy is not so much to protect him, his family, the Alawite community, or his army, as to prevent rival European and Arab powers, plus Turkey, from overthrowing the Syrian regime under camouflage of a humanitarian crusade.

Accordingly, Russian sand-bagging is protecting the maritime traffic moving civil and military cargoes into the Syrian ports. But at the Ministry of Transport in Moscow, as well as among sources in the Black and Azov Sea ports loading vessels bound for Syria, there is reluctance to discuss the shipping movements, as well as refusal publicly to acknowledge efforts by the Turks and the Syrian opposition to intercept the Russian cargoes at sea.

The case of the Atlantic Cruiser indicates how closely the Turks are working with western intelligence agencies to harass Syria-bound ship movements. The German owned, Antigua-flagged vessel was reported as having been intercepted on April 18 by Turkish Navy vessels off the port of Iskenderun, possibly in Cypriot, Syrian or international waters.It was then escorted into Iskenderun, where the cargo hatches were opened and inspected. The publicity that followed claimed Syrian opposition groups had detected Iranian arms being loaded aboard the Atlantic Cruiser in Djibouti. This remarkable piece of detection was not substantiated by the Turkish inspectors. Instead, according to the Saudi andTurkish press reports, they found general cargo, including explosives consigned to Turkish coal-mining companies, and Indian-made parts for a Syrian electricity plant.

To Yevgeny Satanovsky, president of the academic Institute of the Middle East in Moscow, Kremlin strategy is not knee-jerk reaction. Russian policy in the Middle East is not always reacting to that of the US, while Syria does not necessarily face an American threat. Turkey and Saudi Arabia are more likely to intervene. However, despite all the difficulty of Bashar Assads relationship with the people of Syria, everyone should just leave it as it is, for the safety of the whole region. Israel is really skeptical of Assad, but it doesnt want to destabilize the situation by toppling his government, as it realizes the possible outcome. Nobody wants another Al-Qaeda-like outrage. Russia should not perform any military activities there, unlike the USSR, which wasted dozens of billions of dollars and still had to withdraw. Its good that todays Russia, run by businessmen, is clear of ideology, and it is pragmatic about its expenditures.

The latest Russian Customs data on Moscows trade with Damascus indicate that the biggest Russian exports are diesel, gas oil, and other petroleum products, followed by grain. Most of these cargoes are loaded at Novorossiysk or Tuapse ports on the Black Sea. A source at Tuapse told Fairplay: if there are any restrictions, they are not in the port.

US and European Union sanctions now prevent Syria from buying fuel from many of the neighbouring states for domestic heating and for operating motorized military equipment. That still leaves Russia, Iraq and Iran to supply Syria with what it needs. Western media claims that Russia is doing no more than protecting commercial interests in Syria are missing the point. Trade turnover between the two countries is small, and was dwindling before the recent troubles began. In 2008 Russias two-way turnover amounted to $1.94 billion; in 2009, $1.14 billion; in 2010, $1.12 billion. In order of magnitude, exporters to Syria start with Saudi Arabia, with 12% of the market; China with 9%; Russia with 7.5%; and Italy, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates with around 5% each. But these numbers dont include the arms and defence trade.

During the Soviet period, Syria ran up a debt to Moscow for arms of more than $13 billion. In 2005, $10 billion of that was written off on condition Damascus kept buying new arms from Moscow. The current arms order-book is generally reported as worth about $3.5 billion. With enemies of long standing on each one of Syrias land borders, it is perfectly obvious that Syria must now depend on the sea for its lifeline. It is obvious too that the Kremlin intends to remind everyone that it should stay open.

Promised deliveries from Russia include the Bastion coastal missile system equipped with the Yakhont supersonic cruise missile for attacking ships as large as aircraft carriers. The range of the Yakhont is 300 kilometres.

According to a presentation a year ago by Igor Korotchenko, editor of National Defense magazine in Moscow, one of the operational purposes of the Bastion system is to protect the Russian Navy squadron at Tartus, the base itself, and the coastline 300 kilometres to north and south thats the entire Syrian waterfront. Russias naval commander Admiral Vladimir Vysotsky said in August of 2010 that by this year the Tartus naval base will be able to accommodate cruisers and aircraft carriers for as long as the Kremlin wants to deploy them there. According to Korotchenko, to speak plainly, modern shipborne air defenses cannot intercept such missiles.

The Russian Association of Shipowners declines to comment on what they know of interference by the Turks or others with Russian cargoes bound for Syria. Novorossiysk Commercial Seaport Company also prefers to stay mum.

Georgy Polyakov, spokesman for the Russian-Syrian Business Council, told Fairplay: taking into account the current situation in Syria, more detailed information on the bilateral Russian-Syrian relations should be given by the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia, as the responsible agency." The ministry refuses to respond to questions.

Satanovsky, the leading academic expert on Syria in Moscow, calls the situation in the country senseless. Russian-Syrian relations are the prerogative of the Russian leadership. Any pressure [on them] is perceived as interference in internal affairs. Russia is resisting very hard. All this is at the level of conversations and press reports, to which the Russian side pays no attention. But thats like the bear who pays no attention to the hamster trying to attack him, unless he bites the bears sensitive parts. Remember what happened to [Georgian president Mikheil] Saakashvili.

Dances With Bears

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: 23/05/2012 @ 16:44
Russia prepares for global war.

"Russia reserved the right to preemptively strike NATO targets once it feels its shield posed a significant threat"

Russia today staged the first successful test-launch of a new intercontinental missile designed to penetrate the defence system now being deployed by NATO despite Moscow's fierce complaints.
The highly-symbolic launch came just days after alliance formally activated the first stage of a missile defence shield whose deployment Russia has bitterly opposed out of fears that it may target its own vast nuclear arsenal.
"The dummy warhead reached its target area at the Kura test range on the Kamchatka Peninsula. The set goals of the launch were reached," Interfax quoted Russian Strategic Nuclear Forces spokesman Vadim Koval as saying.
A military source told the agency that the launch was only the second ever conducted in the top-secret programme.
The source said the first failed on September 27 when the missile suffered an undisclosed malfunction and crashed only 10 kilometres (six miles) from the launch site.
The rocket still has no formal name but is being billed by the military as a "fifth generation" weapon that substantially upgrades the technology used by its already-feared feared Topol-M and Yars systems.
Various sources told Interfax that the new missile was better equipped to penetrate the new US-backed missile defence system in Europe whose first stage NATO official activated at its Chicago summit on Sunday.
"This is one of the... measures being developed by Russia's military and political leadership in response to the US deployment of a global anti-missile system," former strategic forces director Viktor Yesin told Interfax.
Little is known about the new weapon except its purported ability to better avoid being shot down.
The Russian missile "uses a new type of fuel that helps reduce the time required to operate the propellants in the active stage of the rocket's trajectory," one military source said.
Officials believe this makes it more difficult to detect and easier to manoeuvre. Interfax said the weapon is also equipped with individual warheads that can change course to avoid being shot down.
Russia has hundreds of missiles capable of raining down nearly 2,000 nuclear warheads on the United States and its other former Cold War-era foes.
But much of the force is built on technology developed in the Soviet era that Russia fears may become obsolete by the time NATO's shield becomes fully operational by the scheduled date of 2018.
Russian President Vladimir Putin unveiled a massive new armaments programme during his successful election to a third term and made a visit to a military factory one of his first high-profile stops after his May 7 swearing in.
Putin's predecessor and protege Dmitry Medvedev warned the West last year that Russia will have to deploy new rockets on the borders of NATO's European partners such as Poland should its concerns not be addressed.
The army's top general Nikolai Makarov this month also warned the United States that Russia reserved the right to preemptively strike NATO targets once it feels its shield posed a significant threat.
US President Barack Obama has sent multiple negotiating missions to Moscow and was earlier this year caught by an open microphone telling Medvedev that he intended to negotiate more on the issue should he win re-election in November.
The Russian military forces spokesman said the missile was launched from a mobile system at the northern Plesetsk space base at 10:15 am (0615) GMT on its 6,000-kilometres (3,700-mile) journey to the Pacific.
News reports did not specify the missile's actual range nor the number of warheads it can carry.
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: 23/05/2012 @ 16:56
Russia Turns on New Missile Warning Radar


Russia placed its new Voronezh-M long-range missile warning radar on duty in the Irkutsk region of Siberia on Wednesday, marking a major increase in its missile early warning system capability..

"At 10:15 a.m. (5:15 a.m. Moscow time) on May 23, it was put on duty," said Lt. Gen. Oleg Ostapenko, the commander of Russia's Aerospace Defense Forces at the site.

"This unique station has massive capabilities and is a key link in carring out our strategic tasks given to us by the high command. It plays a key role in the missile early warning chain," he said at the opening ceremony for the Voronezh-M radar station.

"Once a second Voronezh-M is built, we will no longer have to rely on the Dnepr missile early warning system radars" he added.

The Dnepr system was the Soviet Union's first generation phased-array anti-missile radar system. It was deployed at a number of peripheral sites in the USSR including Latvia, Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan. Russia lost use of these facilities when the Soviet Union collapsed, causing a loss of surveillance capability.

With the introduction of a second Voronezh-M station, the system will have its coverage doubled to 240 degrees, covering an arc from India to the United States.

The new Voronezh-M station can also be more quickly deployed to a new site and requires a smaller crew to operate it compared to previous generation stations. The radar station also uses 40 percent less energy.

Former Strategic Missile Forces Chief of Staff Col. Gen. Viktor Yesin said the new Voronezh-M radar station covers the northeast of the U.S. and China.

It can detect ballistic targets up to 6000 kilometers, while the older Dnepr radar can only detect them at up to 2500 kilometers, Yesin said.

RIA Novosti
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: 23/05/2012 @ 17:50
NATO's not very lofty summit

Posted By Stephen M. WaltTuesday, May 22, 2012 - 1:18 PM

What's the most useless waste of time, money, and fuel that you can think of? A NASCAR race? A Star Trek convention? The Burning Man festival?

Well, right up there with those obvious granfalloons is the recent NATO summit in Chicago. I've now read the official statements and White House press releases, and it's tempting to see the whole thing as a subtle insult to our collective intelligence. To paraphrase Churchill, never have so many world leaders flown so far to accomplish so little.

Along with the usual boilerplate, there were three big items on the summit agenda.
First, the assembled leaders announced that NATO will end the war in Afghanistan by the summer of 2013, and gradually turn security over to the Afghans themselves. This decision sounds like a significant milestone, but it's really just acknowledging a foregone conclusion. Popular support for the war has been plummeting, and the Obama administration has been lowering U.S. objectives for some time. In fact, the war in Afghanistan was lost a long time ago (mostly because the Bush administration invaded Iraq and let the Taliban come back), and Obama's big mistake was failing to recognize this from the start. The 2009 "surge" provided a fig leaf to enable the U.S. and NATO to get out, but the cost has been billions more dollars squandered, more dead NATO soldiers and dead Afghans, and a deteriorating relationship with nuclear-armed Pakistan. It's nice that NATO is acknowledging these realities, but it didn't take a summit to figure this out. Perhaps the only benefit of this announcement is that it might make it harder for Mitt Romney to reverse course in the event he gets elected, though I'm not at all sure that Romney would want to do so anyway.

Second, NATO has piously declared -- for the zillionth time -- that its members will enhance their military capabilities by improved intra-alliance cooperation. This step is justified in part by highlighting the alliance's supposed recent achievements, to wit:

"The success of our forces in Libya, Afghanistan, the Balkans and in fighting piracy is a vivid illustration that NATO remains unmatched in its ability to deploy and sustain military power to safeguard the security of our populations and to contribute to international peace and security."

NATO is "unmatched" because the United States maintains a global military presence, but the self-congratulation here seems misplaced. Libya hardly looks like a success story right now, success in Afghanistan has been downgraded not to what we originally wanted but to whatever we think we can achieve, and the Balkan operation now appears open-ended.

More importantly, how many times have we seen this movie? Ever since the 1952 Lisbon force goals, NATO's European members have promised to improve their capabilities and then failed to meet their agreed-upon goals. This pattern has continued for five-plus decades, and it makes you wonder why anyone takes such pledges seriously anymore. If EU countries can't find the money to backstop a proper firewall for the fragile Greek, Italian, and Spanish economies, it is hard to believe NATO's European members are going to make significant new investments in defense. I'm not saying they should, by the way, given that Europe faces no significant conventional military threats. Last time I checked, the U.S. was spending about 4 percent of its GDP on defense and the rest of NATO was averaging about 1.7 percent. Both halves of the transatlantic partnership will be trimming budgets in the years ahead, no matter what they said in Chicago. So I wouldn't put much stock in item #2.

Third, NATO reaffirmed its commitment to the missile defense boondoggle. Never mind that the Defense Science Board recently concluded that existing defense technologies are still easily spooked by inexpensive countermeasures. Please overlook the tens of billions of dollars we've spent chasing the Holy Grail of missile defense since the 1980s, without ever getting there. Ignore the poisonous effect this program has on relations with Russia, which has to assume the worst and take our efforts seriously. And pay no attention to the fact that if missile defense ever did work really, really well, it would just encourage potential adversaries to work on alternative delivery mechanisms (like smuggling) that would make it more difficult to trace an attack back to its source.

The summit did give Obama the opportunity to show off his home town to his European friends. As a former Chicagoan, I'm glad they had the chance to look around a great American city, and I hope everyone had a good time. But both the attendees and the various groups protesting the summit seem to have missed the most important fact about the gathering: It just wasn't a very important event.

Foreign Policy
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: 24/05/2012 @ 12:34
NATO continues to lie Russia in the face

The leaders of NATO members made another statement about missile defense during the Summit in Chicago: "The European missile defense of NATO is not directed against Russia and would not undermine Russia's strategic deterrent force."
They said that the main purpose of NATO is still clear - it is Persian rockets yet to be created (incidentally, in the foreseeable future, Iran's strategic delivery is not expected as the technology is not available) and the notorious Korean "nuclear slingshot." Allegedly, they are the principal adversaries of NATO and Russia was just at the wrong time and wrong place.   
The story is hard to believe. If everything is so rosy, then why only "political guarantees" are provided? After all, Russia has insisted, and continues to insist on legal safeguards. In principle, they do not provide much of the immunity either. For example, the USSR and Germany had a similar document, but when Hitler made a decision, the paper did not help to protect Russia.
Now the European missile defense does not threaten Russia technically. Only the first and second echelons of the defense will be implemented by 2015 that will not be able to "get" Russian ballistic missiles and especially submarines. The third and fourth ones, however, present a threat.

Incidentally, Germany that signed a nonaggression pact, for many reasons did not have enough forces for a "quick win" in the east, but two years later, the strengthened Reich did dare. Nevertheless, in 1939 the two countries legally agreed not to touch each other.
It is unclear what would prevent NATO from doing the same today. If they want to put pressure on Russia (and they will), no piece of paper will stop them. But now, there is a great opportunity to lull the vigilance of Moscow, pushing the problem to the back burner.
"Regretting the repeated statements by Russia on possible measures against the missile defense system, we welcome Russia's willingness to continue the dialogue to reach an agreement on future cooperation on missile defense," another "fresh" idea from the same summit in Chicago.
Probably the biggest "regret" over there is caused by the May revelation of Chief of General Staff Nikolai Makarov who said that in case of an exacerbation of the situation Russia will be ready to make a preemptive strike on the missile defense system in Europe. The US is far across the ocean, so Bulgaria and Romania will have to deal with it first. However, for now "the dialogue to reach an agreement" is continued.
It is believed that it would be great to unite different countries, including Russia, under one large "umbrella" to work together to fend off the "unruly neighbors" when they start misbehaving. Yet, this is not going to work. The global missile defense system is only possible when creating a unified command post (guess where?). Otherwise, it is not a common strategic system but rather a patchwork of tactical "conversations."

The shield will have so many holes (with several staffs, the coordination and synchronization would take too many precious seconds) that it would be easier for each state to defend itself than to maintain the current status quo. It is clear that the countries that do not have their own effective means of defense agree to the U.S. terms.
For Russia, the adherence to the general (read - U.S.) "umbrella" means a loss of at least part of the defense sovereignty. And for what? According to public data from 30 states with missile capabilities, 17 have obsolete models with a range of 300 kilometers. In addition, a number of countries are considering opting out of the development of missiles as it is troublesome and expensive.
Mikhail Sinelnikov, Pravda.Ru            
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: 24/05/2012 @ 19:09
Russia tests new missile with previously unachievable performance

Russia's "asymmetric response" to the US missile defense system, the test flight of which took place on Wednesday from Plesetsk spaceport, was an analogue of the sea-based intercontinental ballistic missile Bulava. Sources from the Russian rocket industry told the Kommesant newspaper that the two missiles were identical in their construction. They weigh nearly 36 tons, and are 12 meters in length. The two rockets also have the same amount of stages.

The new missile needs to be developed further. However, if all goes well, then Russia may have the new state-of-the-art strategic complex of highest, previously unachievable performance.   

Colonel Vadim Koval, an official spokesman for Russia's Strategic Missile Forces, told reporters, without giving any details, that Russia conducted the first test flight of the prototype of the new ICBM. The launch was conducted from a mobile platform, the official said.

However, a source from the rocket industry told Interfax that it became the second launch for the missile. The first flight went unsuccessfully, although an official confirmation to that could not be found. Experts concluded that it goes about the little-known Avangard - a deeply modernized variant of the new Yars missile system.

The new, yet still mysterious missile complex, can be a ground-based analogue of the Bulava system. The Moscow Institute of Thermal Technology started testing Bulava after a series of failed launches.

The performance of the missiles hold perfect prospects for the new weapons in the struggle with the US missile defense system, the elements of which are going to be deployed in Europe. NATO officials stated during the recent summit in Chicago (which Russia ignored) that the first stage of the European missile defense system was practically ready. It is worthy of note that in May, Nikolai Makarov, the chief of Russia's General Staff, announced a possibility of pre-emptive blow against European military objects in case of deployment of the European missile defense system.

Sources from the rocket industry of Russia said in connection with the above-mentioned launch that there was new fuel used for the new missile. The fuel reduces the time required for the work of the engines during the boost phase of the flight. This is the phase, when the missile is most vulnerable to air defense systems.

"As a result, the most complicated boost phase of the flight goes so quickly that the enemy does not have time to calculate its trajectory. The enemy will thus be unable to destroy it. In other words, we can say that our opportunities in overcoming missile defense will increase considerably," an official with the rocket industry told the Moskovsky Komsomolets newspaper.

Owing to the new fuel, the missile will be able to carry more warheads - up to ten. Nowadays, this can only be carried by super heavy (weighing more than 200 tons) silo-based liquid-fuel ICBMs RS-20 (SS-18). The missiles were developed in Ukraine. Russia still has them, but their resource is about to reach the limit after many prolongations.

The term - "asymmetric response" to the US missile defense system - was coined by Vladimir Putin during his second term as president in 2007. He referred to the lexicon of the Soviet times at an annual press conference and said that all responses to the deployment of the US missile defense system in Europe would be "asymmetrical, and yet highly effective."

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: 24/05/2012 @ 19:27
According to God's trade the Russian science receives new space knowledge as the Russian scientists are ready to accept this knowledge. Russia, the country chosen the highest unearthly forces, advances the United States in military and space technologies approximately for 25-30 years....

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: 26/05/2012 @ 08:33
Strategic Yars to replace Russia's iconic Topol-M

The Russian Strategic Rocket Forces are beginning preparations for the deployment of new missile systems "Yars" in Irkutsk, Novosibirsk and Kozelsk (Kaluga region) rocket units. This complex is truly unique - its range reaches 11,000 miles, and it is also equipped with special protection from terrorists.

Lt. Gen. Sergei Karakayev, Commander of the Strategic Missile Forces, talked about this with reporters, summing up the results of the winter training of personnel and shifting of the troops to the new complexes. As the commander noted, in Kaluga region deployment of the mobile ground missile complex "Yars" will be implemented in mine version.

Later, the transformation of a series of missiles at "Yars" is planned. At Teykovsky missile complex in Ivanovo region, combat duty of the third division of the mobile missile system "Yars" will begin in June.

According to the site Weapons of Russia, missile complex "Yars" has intercontinental range of up to 11,000 miles, is equipped with a reentry warhead maneuvering units with individual targeting, has superior maneuverability and as a consequence, increased survival rating.

For the first time this system was demonstrated to the public in Teykovsky missile unit in 2009. Retraining of the personnel at the complex is held at the training center stationed at the Plesetsk Cosmodrome in Arkhangelsk region.

As the press service of the Ministry of Defense reported, mobile missile system "Yars" is equipped with intercontinental ballistic missile RS-24 with multiple warheads developed by the Moscow Institute of Thermal Technology using scientific, technical and technological solutions implemented in the missile complex "Topol-M". The time of the development and manufacturing of the complex was quite short, which led to its unification with "Topol-M".

The first test launch of RS-24 was made on May 29, 2007 from the Plesetsk test site in Arkhangelsk region. The missile accurately hit the target at the Kura test range in Kamchatka.

Adopting the RS-24 missiles will increase the combat capabilities of the strike group RVSN to overcome missile defense systems, thereby strengthening the nuclear deterrence potential of Russian strategic nuclear forces.

In the future, along with the already adopted mono-block intercontinental ballistic missile RS-12M2 (missile complex "Topol-M") missile RS-24 will form the basis of the strike group of the Russian strategic forces. Victor. Semashko, candidate of military sciences, a retired colonel, and Associate Professor, commented on the situation for "Pravda.Ru":

"The rocket complex "Yars" with a missile RS-24 is definitely unique. Still, the fact that many parts of the rocket forces began replacing "Topol" with" Yars,"does not mean anything. "Topol" is good and serves the purpose for which it was intended. "Yars" has somewhat different tasks.

Modern security complex "Yars" is arranged in such a way as to fully protect it from extremists. The multi-level system does not allow making an unscheduled launch by terrorists even if all pre-launch steps have been performed.

The command to launch a rocket comes from outside. It is impossible to simulate the start signal. Even if the complex is in the hands of well-trained fighters, they can only destroy it, but not launch it.

Launchers for "Yars" were repeatedly tested for fire-safety and explosion resistance. The tests completely eliminated the possibility of a nuclear explosion in a terrorist attack. It is also impossible to detect the launcher via satellite reconnaissance. Its body has been specially treated, which makes it invisible to radar as well as space exploration units.

Special arrangements for the external security have been made. "Yars" is always guarded on the way to its destination.   

It is worth mentioning that the Russian Defense Ministry in 2011 has purchased 30 strategic missiles "Topol-M" and "Yars" from the industry. Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov has recently pointed out that the proportion of the advanced missile systems to the ground strategic nuclear forces has increased from 13 to 25 percent. This means that the strategic nuclear forces remain a reliable guarantor of deterrence of any aggression.

Providing strategic missile forces with new weapons comes amid the international debate about NATO missile defense system approaching the borders of Russia. In fact, this is also a political issue."
Mikhail Sinelnikov, Pravda.Ru            

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: 29/05/2012 @ 14:32
Military experts warn - NATO is ready for intervention to Syria without sanctions of the United Nations. In case of large-scale war in the Middle East, some states as Turkey and Israel, will stop the existence. China will essentially expand the possession in South East Asia, Great Britain and France will lose their last overseas territories and will plunge into long internal political crisis.   
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: 31/05/2012 @ 09:13
Brave Belgians are going to war with Syria

Belgians prepare for war with Syria?!!

But each Belgian should remember that Belgium is the hostage of NATO and Brussels is the lawful purpose #1 for the Russian nuclear missiles in case of the global conflict.
NATO tries to create the Euro-ABM?!!


But Russia already added to the arsenal the rockets, capable to overcome resistance for the present not existing means of antimissile protection.
Europeans should spend money for creation of new workplaces and for increase of a standard of living of poorly protected citizens instead of spending money for out-of-date systems of antinuclear protection and for incitement of new bloody war in the Middle East.

Russia is capable to close all Europe an antinuclear umbrella, in case of real threat of safety of the Euro-Asian continent.

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: 13/06/2012 @ 10:24
Syrian Conflict Threatens to Degenerate into World War

Russian Warning Shots

by Thierry Meyssan

The nature of the Syrian crisis has changed. The process of destabilization that was to open the path for legal military intervention by the Atlantic Alliance has failed. Removing its mask, the United States has publicly announced the possibility of attacking Syria without the approval of the Security Council, as it also did in Kosovo. Washington must be pretending not to have noticed that the Russia of Vladimir Putin is not that of Boris Yeltsin. After being assured of Chinese support, Moscow literally fired two warning shots in the direction of Washington. The continuing violations of international law by NATO and the GCC threaten to unleash a global conflict.

During the celebration of the victory over Nazism   
on 9 June 2012, President Putin emphasized the need for   
Russia to be ready for new sacrifice.

President Vladimir Putin began his third mandate under the sign of sovereignty in the face of direct threats launched against the Russian Federation by the United States and NATO. Moscow has repeatedly denounced the expansion of NATO, the installation of military bases, the deployment of a missile shield on its borders, and the destruction of Libya and the destabilization of Syria.

In the days following his inauguration, Mr. Putin reviewed the Russian military industrial sector, his armed forces and his treaty alliance system. (1) He pursued this course of action while choosing to draw in Syria a line in the sand that must not be crossed. For Putin, NATOs invasion of Libya was equivalent to the invasion of Czechoslovakia by the Third Reich and that of Syria, should it occur, would be comparable to the invasion of Poland that started WWII.

Any interpretation that what is currently happening in the Levant is the result of an internal dynamic of revolution/repression within Syria is not only false but a distortion of the real stakes involved, and simply amounts to more political maneuvering. The Syrian crisis is first and foremost a further stage in the project of "remodeling of the greater Middle East"; a further attempt to destroy the "Axis of Resistance" and the first "war for gas" being played out (2).

What is actually at stake in Syria is not whether Bashar al-Assad will be able to democratize the institutions he has inherited or whether the Wahhabist monarchies of the Gulf will succeed in destroying the last secular regime in the region and impose their sectarianism, but to determine the lines of separation between the emerging power blocs of NATO (the North Atlantic Treaty Organization) and the SCO (Shanghai Cooperation Organization) (3).

Some of our readers will be startled to read the preceding phrase. Indeed, the Western and Gulf media have been hammering the point day after day that President El-Assad is a sectarian dictator working to the advantage of the Alawite minority, while the armed opposition to his authority is portrayed as the incarnation of democratic pluralism. Just a glance at recent events is enough to belie this version.

Bashar al-Assad has successively convened municipal elections, a referendum, as well as legislative elections. All observers unanimously agreed that the elections unfolded in a transparent manner. The degree of popular participation was more than 60% even while the West was denouncing the electoral process as "a farce" and while the Western-backed armed opposition was preventing citizens from getting to the polls in the four districts under its control. At the same time, the armed opposition stepped up its attacks not only against security forces but also against civilians and all the symbols of national culture and of Syrias multi-confessional character.

They assassinated progressive Sunnis, then randomly killed Alawites and Christians in order to force their families to flee. They burned more than fifteen hundred schools and churches. They proclaimed an ephemeral Independent Islamic Emirate in Baba Amr where they instituted a Revolutionary Tribunal which condemned more than 150 felons, who were then beheaded in public one by one by an executioner. It is certainly not the woeful spectacle of some vagrant politicians, meeting up at the exiled Syrian National Council and erecting a facade of democracy having no relation to the reality of the crimes being committed by the Free "Syrian" Army, that will prevent the truth from coming out much longer. In the circumstances, who can believe that the secular Syrian regime, whose exemplary character was celebrated not so long ago, would have turned into a confessional dictatorship, while the Free "Syrian" Army, supported by the Wahhabist dictatorships of the Gulf and obeying the injunctions of Takfirist preachers would conversely be advanced as a paragon of democratic pluralism?

The announcement by U.S. leaders of a possible international intervention outside a U.N. mandate in the same fashion as NATO dismembered Yugoslavia elicted both apprehension and anger in Moscow. The Russian Federation, which until now held itself in a defensive position, has moved to take the initiative. This strategic shift flows from the urgency of the situation from Russias point of view and favorable shifts on the ground in Syria (4).

Moscow proposes to create a Contact Group on Syria that would bring together the ensemble of concerned states, meaning Syrias neighbors as well as both regional and international powers. Its purpose is to put in place a forum for dialogue to substitute for the current bellicose approach imposed by the West under the Orwellian rubric, the "Friends of Syria Conference."

Russia continues to support the Annan Planwhich is in fact the scarcely modified plan submitted earlier by Sergei Lavrov to the Arab League. Russia deplores that the plan was not implemented, assigning responsibility for that failure to the opposition faction which took up arms. According to A.K. Lukashevich, spokesperson at the Foreign Ministry, the Free "Syrian" Army is an illegal organization according to international law. It is assassinating twenty to thirty Syrian soldiers each day yet is publicly supported by NATO states and the GCC in violation of the Annan Plan (5).

Positioning himself as a peacemaker confronting NATO warmongering, Vladimir Putin has demanded that the CSTO (Collective Security Treaty Organization) ready itself to deploy its "blue chapkas" in Syria, to both separate the belligerents and combat foreign forces. Nicolai Bordyuzha, secretary-general of the CSTO, has confirmed that he is ready to deploy 20,000 men trained for this type of mission and immediately available (6).

This would be the first time that the CSTO deploys a peace force outside of former Soviet territory. Cut to the quick, Ban Ki-Moon attempted to sabotage the initiative, countering with his own sudden effort to organize a Contact Group. Convening in Washington the Sanctions Working Group of the Friends Of Syria Conference, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton defied the Russian proposal and raised the ante in favor of regime change (7).

In Turkey, opposition legislators have visited the Syrian refugee camps. They have confirmed the absence of more than one thousand refugees registered by the United Nations in the main camp and noted, by contrast, the presence of an arsenal in the camp. They have also demanded in Parliament that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan reveal the rising amount of humanitarian aid being given to phantom refugees. The deputies maintain that the refugee camp is a cover for a secret military operation, sheltering in reality combatants, principally Libyans who are using it as a rear base. The deputies are asserting that the combatants are those who were introduced in the district of Houla when the massacre was being perpetrated.

These revelations confirm the accusations of the Russian ambassador to the Security Council, Vitaly Churkin, according to which the Special Representative of Ban Ki-Moon in Libya, Ian Martin, had used U.N. funds destined for refugees to bring al Qaeda combatants into Turkey (8).

In Saudi Arabia, the fracture between King Abdullah and the Sudairi clan has reappeared. At the invitation of the monarch, the Supreme Council of the Oulema issued a fatwa stipulating that Syria is not a land of jihad. At the same time, however, Prince Faisal, the Minister of Foreign Affairs has been calling to arm the opposition against the "Alawite usurper."

Thursday, June 7 was a day of many significant events. While Ban Ki-Moon and Navi Pillay, respectively Secretary General and High Commissioner of Human Rights, were pleading their case against Syria before the U.N. General Assembly, Moscow proceeded with two test-launches of its intercontinental ballistic missiles.
The Bulava missile draws its name from an ancient Slavic
mace used as a baton by the Marshall of the Cossack Armies.

Colonel Vadim Koval, spokesman of the Strategic Missile Troops of the Russian Federation (RSVN) confirmed the test of a Topollaunched from a silo near the Caspian Sea, but has not confirmed that of the Bulava from a submarine in the Mediterranean. But the firing was observed from all over the Near East, Israel and Armenia and there is no other known armament that leaves similar tracings in the sky (9).

The message is clear : Moscow is ready for world war if NATO and the GCC do not comply with the international obligations as defined in the Annan Plan and persist in aiding terrorism.

According to our sources, this this shot across the bow was coordinated with the Syrian authorities. Moscow equally had encouraged Damascus to liquidate the Islamic Emirate of Baba Amr once the authority of President al-Assad was confirmed by constitutional referendum, as it also encouraged the president to wipe out mercenary groups present in the country as soon as the new Parliament and new Prime Minister were installed. The order was given to move from a defensive strategy to offensive action to protect the population from terrorism. The national army moved to attack the strongholds of the Free "Syrian" Army. The combat in the coming days is going to be difficult, all the more so in that the mercenaries possess mortars, anti-tank missiles and, as from now, surface to air missiles.

To lessen the rapidly-increasing tension, France immediately accepted the Russian proposal to participate in an ad hoc Contact Group. Washington hurried Frederic C. Hof to Moscow. Contradicting the statements made the day before by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Mr. Hof also accepted the Russian invitation.

The time is past to lament the expansion of combat into Lebanon, or to conjecture about the possible regionalization of conflict. Over the past sixteen months of the destabilization of Syria, NATO and the GCC have created a situation without exit that might well degenerate into global war.

Thierry Meyssan

(1) President Putins agenda:   
May 7President Putin is inaugurated.   
May 8Dmitry Medvedev is nominated Prime Minister   
May 9Commemoration of victory over Nazi Germany   
May 10Visit of the Russian military-industrial establishment   
May 11Reception for the President of Abkhazia   
May 12Reception for the President of South Ossetia   
May 14-15Informal meeting with heads of state of the CTSO   
May 18Visit of the CYCLONE Central Research Institute   
May 25Review of atomic sub-marines   
May 30Meeting with key defense officials   
May 31Meeting with the Russian security council   
June 4-7 Visite to China, SCO Summit   
June 7Visit to Kazakhstan during the Topol missile launch

(2) "Struggle over the Middle East: Gas Ranks First, by Imad Fawzi Shueibi, Voltaire Network, 17 April 2012.

(3) "Moscow and the formation of The New World System, by Imad Fawzi Shueibi, Voltaire Network, 11 February 2012.

(4) "The Houla affair highlights Western intelligence gap in Syria, by Thierry Meyssan, Voltaire Network, 5 June 2012.

(5) "Comment of Official Representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia A.K. Lukashevich on the Question of Interfax related to the statement made by Representative of so-called Free Syrian Army S.Al-Kurdi," Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, 5 June 2012.

(6) "Syria: Vladimir Putin contemplates sending CSTO peacekeeping force, Voltaire Network, 3 June 2012.

(7) "Friends of the Syrian People Sanctions Working Group," Press Statement by Hillary Clinton, Department of State, 6 June 2012.

(8) "Libya: Brigands-Revolutionaries and the UN," by Alexander Mezyaev, Strategic Culture Foundation (Russia), Voltaire Network, 22 March 2012.

(9) "7 June 2012: Russia displays intercontinental nuclear ballistic superiority, Voltaire Network, 9 June 2012.

Voltaire Network
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: 13/06/2012 @ 10:28
Russia prepares army for Syrian deployment
12 June 2012
By Clara Weiss   
Given the worsening crisis in Syria, the Nezavisimaya Gazeta newspaper reported that the Russian army is apparently being prepared for a mission in Syria. Citing anonymous sources in the military leadership, the newspaper said that Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the general staff to work out a plan for military operations outside Russia, including in Syria.   
The units being prepared for an intervention are the 76th Division of airborne forces (an especially experienced unit of the Russian army), the 15th Army Division, as well as special forces from a brigade of the Black Sea fleet, which has a base in the Syrian port of Tartus.   
The details of the operational plan are being prepared by the working parties of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation, to which most of the post-Soviet states belong, as well as the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, to which China and Russia belong.   
According to the newspaper report, deployment depends on the decision of the Russian government and the UN. However, the plans also foresee that the troops might intervene without UN approval. The Russian government has so far not confirmed the report.   
On Monday last week, three Russian warships were sighted off the Syrian coast. An anonymous source from the Russian government told the Iranian newspaper Tehran Times that Moscow wants to show NATO that it will not allow any military operation against Damascus under the guise of a humanitarian mission.   
Earlier, the secretary-general of the Collective Security Treaty Organization, Nikolai Bordjusha, had held out the possibility of using peacekeepers in Syria. The task in Syria is likely to be to impose peaceprimarily against the insurgents, who use weapons to solve political problems.   
Russia and China strongly oppose a military intervention by NATO in Syria, and have already blocked two UN resolutions on the issue. The US and its allies, especially Turkey, Saudi Arabia and France, have stoked up a civil war in Syria and are systematically arming the so-called rebels, who consist mainly of Islamists, ex-members of the government, or Al Qaeda terrorists. Turkey is increasingly in the leadership of the US proxy' war in Syria.   
In recent weeks calls for a military intervention in Syria have increased. After the massacre in Houla, French President Francois Hollande spoke out in favour of military intervention. The West blamed the government of Bashar al-Assad for this massacre without any clear evidence. The German elite is also openly discussing a possible military intervention; Berlin has tried unsuccessfully to push Russia to make concessions on the issue.   
Russia has not excluded a political solution, i.e., the slow transition from the Assad regime to another government. At all costs, however, the Kremlin wants to avoid the violent overthrow of Assad by the West for several reasons, whether it is through direct military intervention by NATO or is brought about by the rebels armed by the West. Two weeks ago, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev warned that a military intervention in Syria could quickly escalate and lead to the use of nuclear weapons.   
Since Soviet times, Moscow and Syria have maintained close ties, especially in military and economic matters. More importantly, however, a war against Syria means a ramping up of US aggression in the Middle East. The US has already significantly extended its influence in the region through the wars against Afghanistan and Iraq. They also have military bases in almost every country in the area: Pakistan, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Turkey, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Saudi Arabia, Oman and Turkmenistan, as well as some in other smaller states. Meanwhile, Syria and Iran, which are virtually surrounded by US military bases, have become the last bastions of Russia and China in the Middle East against the encroachment of the United States.   
A regime change in Damascus would probably bring a Sunni government to power, which would work closely with Saudi Arabia and the United States against Russia and China. Moreover, an escalation of the civil war in Syriawhich is already well underwayand a military intervention would set the entire Middle East ablaze. A NATO-led war against Syria would be an immediate prelude to a war against Iran. An attack on Iran would mean another step toward a military escalation of tensions between Washington and Beijing.   
While China obtains a significant portion of its raw material imports from Iran, Tehran is Russias most important ally in the Caucasus and the Caspian Sea to counter the influence of the US and Israel. Both Moscow and Tehran oppose the construction of a trans-Caspian pipeline by the West. They also reject the massive military rearmament of Azerbaijan, which is promoted by the United States, Israel and Turkey. The Caspian region is of key geopolitical importance because it links resource-rich Central Asia with Europe, and because it also has extensive oil and gas reserves.   
The growing threat of war in the Middle Eastand the fact that the European countries, including Germany and France, are siding with the United Statesis increasingly driving Russia into a military alliance with China.   
It is significant that Vladimir Putins first foreign visit since taking office was to Belarus, and that he then only spent a few hours in Berlin and Paris before going on to Central Asia. The highlight of his visit abroad was in China, where he met with the Chinese president, and then took part at the summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) on June 6 and 7. In addition to Russia and China, the Central Asian states of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan also belong to this organization; Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India have observer status.   
As was the case at the previous meeting of the Collective Security Treaty Organization, discussion at the SCO summit centred on military and economic cooperation. The summit adopted a declaration on the establishment of a region of lasting peace and common prosperity. Military intervention against Syria or Iran was explicitly rejected.   
The declaration also condemns the establishment of the NATO missile defence system in Europe, which is directed primarily against Russia and has led to severe tensions between Washington and both Europe and Moscow. In future, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization is planning to cooperate militarily more closely on issues of regional security.   
During his two-day visit to Beijing, Putin had previously agreed with Chinese President Hu Jintao to jointly strengthen security in the Asia-Pacific region. Both countries intend to hold frequent joint military exercises in the Pacific, after holding joint naval exercises in the Yellow Sea in the spring. The United States is increasingly focussing its military build-up in the Asian Pacific region in preparation for a military confrontation with China.   
World Socialist Web Site
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: 13/06/2012 @ 16:22
Russia has the right to use any quantity of battalions of a special purpose, any number of combat helicopters, self-propelled systems of volley fire, other arms, in coordination with the lawful Syrian government, for defense of the Russian military bases, the Russian property, for safety of the Russian citizens being in Syria at present.   
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: 13/06/2012 @ 16:51
U.S. Says Russia Supplying Syria with Combat Helicopters

WASHINGTON, June 13 (RIA Novosti)

The United States suspects Russia of supplying Syria with combat helicopters that will be used against peaceful protesters, the U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said.

We are concerned about the latest information we have that there are attack helicopters on the way from Russia to Syria, which will escalate the conflict quite dramatically, Clinton said.

She once again said that the United States wants Russia to stop supplying Syria with all kinds of weapons.

We have confronted the Russians about stopping their continued armed shipments to Syria. They have from time to time said that we shouldn't worry, everything they're shipping is unrelated to their actions internally. That's patently untrue, Clinton added.

However, Capt. John Kirby, a spokesman for the Pentagon, told a daily press briefing on Tuesday that the U.S. intelligence service has no information on the type of helicopters the Syrian authorities are using against the protesters and declined to confirm that the aircraft come from Russia.

Russian President Vladmir Putin said in early June Russia was not supplying arms to Syria which could be used against protesters. is one of Russias major weapons clients, and Moscow has opposed a proposal for a UN arms embargo on Damascus.

Russia has supplied Syria with Bastion coastal missile systems with Yakhont cruise missiles and Buk surface-to-air missile systems under a contract signed in 2007.

According to UN estimates, least 9,000 people have been killed in Syria since the beginning of a popular uprising against President Bashar al-Assad in March 2011.Syrian activists say the figure is closer to 13,000.

RIA Novosti
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