European States Recognize Palestine

What’s considerably more significant is the fact that the Chinese and Russians are publicly hailing the three recognitions of the sovereign Palestinian state:

In a historic move expected to quell the flames of war in the Middle East, Ireland, Norway and Spain announced the recognition of a Palestinian state on Wednesday. The move is hailed by Chinese experts as representing an overdue correction of “a previously skewed balance,” while bringing the Palestinian question, which had intentionally been obscured before, back to the center stage.

Experts believe the decision may trigger a global wave of recognition for the state of Palestine, not only in support of the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people but it will also exert significant international pressure on Israel’s aggressive practices.

However, they noted that there is still a long way to go for the actual establishment of a Palestinian state, and the root of the problem preventing the realization of the two-State solution lies in the bias and indulgence of the US.

None of this is actually about the lands historically taken by force from the Palestinians, of course, anymore than the war in Ukraine is about who rules over Kiev. But it’s another front in the global war between Clown World and the sovereign nations.

DISCUSS ON SG


Sometimes Tropes are True

SHOT: “Any suggestion that other considerations were involved in the decision-making process is completely false, and the insinuation that Jewish donors secretly plotted to influence government operations is an all too familiar antisemitic trope that the Washington Post should be ashamed to ask about, let alone normalize in print… saying Jews ‘wielded their money & power in an effort to shape American views’ is offensive on so many levels.”

CHASER: Two Republican congressmen have introduced legislation that would provide the same employment and economic protections to Americans serving in the Israeli military as US citizens who get deployed to serve in the US military. Around 23,380 American citizens are currently serving in the Israeli army, according to a February report by The Washington Post.

To the contrary, any U.S. citizen who serves in the armed forces of any foreign nation, including Israel, should have his U.S. citizenship automatically revoked, be permanently expelled from the United States, and face criminal charges of treason if he enters U.S. territory in the future.

This is precisely why dual-citizenship needs to be made illegal again, as it was for most of U.S. history. No wonder the Clown World edition of the USA is a powder keg just waiting for a series of events to set it off. No nation that has been invaded and occupied to such a comprehensive extent has ever survived intact.

DISCUSS ON SG


Did Clown World Go 1 for 2

The President of Iran is confirmed to have been killed in a helicopter crash:

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi was killed after a helicopter carrying him and other officials crashed in the mountainous northwest reaches of Iran on Sunday.

Raisi, 63, was confirmed dead by Iranian media today along with Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian, Governor of Eastern Azerbaijan province Malek Rahmati and Tabriz’s Friday prayer Imam Mohammad Ali Alehashem.

Two pilots and three other Iranian officials and security guards also perished in the crash.

Now, we don’t know that the crash wasn’t simply an accident. Helicopters are the second-most-dangerous form of air travel after those weird Ospreys that the U.S. Marines insist on trying to use. But the death of a high-ranking national leader coming so soon after the failed assassination of the Slovak Prime Minister looks more than a little suspicious.

A lot of people are assuming that Israel was responsible, but it’s premature to try assigning any responsibility at this point. I, personally, tend to doubt it, especially since Iran has demonstrated its ability to hit precision targets in Israel, so I find it hard to imagine Netanyahu giving any orders that would make him look like a legitimate target for reprisal in the world’s eyes.

If it was an assassination and not an accident, I think it’s much more likely the act of neoclowns not only have long sought an active war between Iran and the USA and also need an excuse to extricate themselves from a losing situation in Ukraine.

That being said, the correct answer may be 1 for 3:

Military leaders of the Democratic Republic of Congo’s (DR Congo) said they have put down an attempted coup in a dramatic Sunday incident which included a large shootout erupting in the capital of Kinshasa. At least three men have been reported killed, with two being police officers which engaged a team of armed attackers. The third deceased is said to be one of the gunman. A government spokesman has stated “The armed men attacked the Kinshasa residence of Vital Kamerhe, a federal legislator and a candidate for speaker of the National Assembly of DR Congo, but were stopped by his guards.”

“The Honorable Vital Kamerhe and his family are safe and sound,” the spokesman announced on X. The attempted assassination failed, with the “situation under control” – according to the military, but the whole murky incident is raising eyebrows in the West as the army says it has detained some suspects who hold US and Canadian passports.

DISCUSS ON SG


Two Years in the Making

The Green Flag conducted by the IDF on October 7th was almost certainly decided back in 2021:

The Israeli newspaper Haaretz published an investigation on 9 May, providing further details of the alleged intelligence failures that allowed Hamas to launch Operation Al-Aqsa Flood on 7 October successfully.

The investigation concluded that leaders in the army refused to consider or prepare for the possibility of a Hamas ground invasion of Israel and instead focused on the threat from Hamas missile attacks.

As a result, the army ceased collecting intelligence on low and mid-level Hamas commanders and their activities, the investigation claimed.

The decision to focus intelligence gathering on only a few top Hamas commanders was made in 2021 following a battle with Hamas called “Operation Guardian of the Walls.”

“From that moment,” says an intelligence officer who at that time held a significant position in the Southern Command, the army “had no interest in gathering intelligence on Hamas forces and senior and prominent commanders in the organization, or on their training.”

Though Hamas’ armed wing, the Qassam Brigades, was openly carrying out exercises to break through the Gaza border fence to attack Israeli settlements and military bases, Israel’s military leadership assumed any breach of the wall was impossible and therefore focused its resources on identifying Hamas rocket launch sites.

Haaretz states that during the Hamas attack on 7 October, the “border fence was revealed to be semi-imaginary” and that fighters from Hamas’ elite Nukhba brigade breached it at 44 different points.

Less than two years earlier, Brigadier General Eran Ofir, head of the border administration, had declared that due to the border fence and accompanying surveillance and automatic machine gun turrets, “it is impossible to pass into the territory of the State of Israel.”

According to the Haaretz report, the Israeli army held two exercises in previous years to prepare for the possibility of Hamas breaching the border before the fence’s completion.

The first was in 2016 and involved responding to a Hamas raid that would use cars, motorcycles, and paragliders to breach the fence into Israel and then move toward the southern settlements (kibbutzim), around which army soldiers were deployed.

However, a security source who participated in the exercise stated that it was soon stopped without any clear plan to prevent such an attack.

“After a few hours, Edelstein decided to stop when the ‘enemy’ had already reached the Ad Halom junction in the north [near Ashdod] and others had reached Kiryat Gat in the south – without the Southern Command and the Gaza Division knowing how to respond,” the source said.

Despite the failure of the exercise, the army leadership opposed holding a second training in 2019 and insisted on focusing on Hamas’ missile capabilities.

Any officers warning of a possible Hamas ground invasion were either ignored or ridiculed.

The dictum of “people – no, launchers – yes” was advanced by the entire line of the senior command, Haaretz writes.

The Israeli newspaper reports as well that the army withheld resources from the Military Intelligence Directorate, the Southern Command, and the Gaza Division to prepare to defend against a ground invasion.

It’s now obvious that the plan was to permit an attack of sufficient weight to provide a justification for the ethnic cleansing of Gaza. The IDF response was slow, not due to any surprise, but because the army leadership knew exactly what was happening and the plan called for them to provide the attackers with enough time to run amok before returning back into their own territory with their hostages.

Those who claim this sort of thing is impossible are in total denial of basic human history. Most, though not all, governing elites are just as willing to spend civilian blood as they are to pay a price in soldiers’ lives in order to accomplish their objectives. The only lives they aren’t willing to risk are their own. Look at Ukraine, for example. If the Kiev regime had any concern whatsoever for the Ukrainian people’s lives, it never would have attacked the Donbass, or tried to wage war against Russia.

DISCUSS ON SG


The Gazacaust is Bad PR

Mitt Romney is bewildered. He can’t figure out why Israel is suddenly getting all this bad PR when all they’re doing is defending themselves from an attack that took place seven months ago.

Social media is partially responsible for the widespread international criticism of Israel’s conduct during its military campaign in Gaza, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has suggested. The top American diplomat made the comment during an exchange with Senator Mitt Romney (R-Utah) at the McCain Institute’s 2024 Sedona Forum in Sedona, Arizona on Friday.

Romney asked Blinken why “the PR [has] been so awful” for Israel amid the conflict in Gaza. “Why has [Palestinian armed group] Hamas disappeared in terms of public perception? An offer is on the table to have a ceasefire, and yet the world is screaming about Israel,” he said. “Typically, the Israelis are good at PR. What’s happened here?” Romney said.

The Secretary of State recalled that when he started working in Washington in the early 1990s “everyone did the same thing,” which was reading newspapers like The New York Times, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal, and watching national news networks to get information about world events.

But now, in the 2020s, “we are on an intravenous feed of information with new impulses, inputs every millisecond” and social media “has dominated the narrative,” he said.

Now, I’m no marketing expert, but it strikes me that the combination of a) mass graves being found in Gaza, b) unprecedented crackdowns on college protesters, and c) passing anti-Constitutional laws to threaten anyone who objects to genocide is not particularly amenable to positive public relations.

When you’ve lost Scott Adams to the point that he is dropping more F-bombs than an Iranian drone strike, it can’t be long before you lose the rest of the Boomers.

UPDATE: The IDF expanded its defensive operations with airstrikes on the city of Rafah tonight.

DISCUSS ON SG


Turkey Cuts Ties with Israel

The Gazacaust continues to have global ramifications:

The Turkish government has suspended all trade with Israel in response to the Gaza war, the Trade Ministry in Ankara said in a statement posted on social media on Thursday.

Türkiye has been one of Israel’s fiercest critics since the conflict with Hamas broke out in October. The suspension of all export and import operations has been introduced in response to the Jewish state’s “aggression against Palestine in violation of international law and human rights,” the statement read.

Ankara will strictly implement the new measures until Israel allows uninterrupted and sufficient flow of humanitarian aid into Gaza, the document added.

This is significant, because Turkey is not only a member of NATO, but it has historically been one of the more friendly nations in the Dar al-Islam to Israel. And while we can’t rule out the USA deciding to sanction Turkey, it’s further evidence that US diplomatic efforts are in a serious state of crisis.

Passing anti-speech laws and anti-boycott laws in US states isn’t going to matter much if the greater part of the planet refuses to economically engage with Israel.

DISCUSS ON SG


The Failed Counterstrike

Pepe Escobar reports that Israel tried to nuke Iran in response to the massive drone strike, but the F-35 carrying the bomb was shot down by Russian air defenses:

From a very high level intel source.

In Asia.

NOT Russia-China.

Although the strategic partnership, of course, exchanges at the highest level 24-7.

Confirmed and re-confirmed.

It will be great to know what Sy Hersh hears from his Beltway sources.

Here we go.

Israel initially chose to respond with extreme force.

An F-35 loaded with a nuclear bomb was sent east over Jordan.

The mission: cause a high-altitude detonation over Iran that would provoke a surge in the high-capacity power lines, crippling Iran’s electric grid, as well as disabling all electronic devices.

An EMP attack.

However… as the Israeli F-35 was leaving Jordanian airspace it was shot down by the Russian Air Force.

Hence the publicised version of the Israeli counter response was such a travesty.

In the end all sides decided not to publicise the real news – to de-escalate what could well turn into WWIII.

I think it is absolutely foolish to express any opinion at all about the veracity of this report. There is no question that the Netanyahu government is sufficiently daring and/or desperate to risk an EMP attack; Netanyahu is almost certainly also willing to risk trying to nuke the center of Tehran if he thought he could get away with it without fatal consequences for Israel.

While it could just be fiction or disinformation, the nature of the reported attack being more of a restrained warning, a limited escalation, tends to lend to the credibility of the report. And Escobar has been reasonably reliable in the past, so there is no reason to dismiss him simply because the scary n-word happened to be involved. Moreover, this is exactly the end result that I, and other observers, have expected would happen in the event that Israel attempted some sort of air strike against Iran.

Larry Johnson thinks the reported scenario is unlikely, but I don’t find his reasoning to be even remotely compelling. Given the ranges at which Russian air defenses are operating over Ukraine, the idea that Russia could not have tracked a lone Israeli F-35 and shot it down in part of the crowded real estate in the Middle East nominally under U.S. air control does not strike me as even remotely difficult or improbable. That doesn’t mean that he’s not correct; as I said, I refuse to express any opinion at all about the likelihood of an event about which I have literally zero information.

If legitimate, I think this report is very encouraging, as it indicates a) the Israelis are not overconfident about their ability to utilize their nuclear weapons and are not going to go all-in on the first hand, b) the Russians are exerting their superior air defense capabilities to prevent unnecessary escalation in the Middle East, and c) Iran is exhibiting the same sort of patience that is required to see out the inevitable collapse of Clown World that has been demonstrated by Russia and China.

DISCUSS ON SG


More Than Just Theater

Simplicius explains why the theatrical and easily-defended drone strike was, contra the initial appearances and Clown World media reports, considerably more than just the usual Middle East Kabuki, and was actually a significant and serious message delivered to the US-based patrons of Israel more than to the Netanyahu administration or the IDF:

This strike was unprecedented for several important reasons. Firstly, it was of course the first Iranian strike on Israeli soil directly from Iranian soil itself, rather than utilizing proxies from Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, etc. This alone was a big watershed step that has opened up all sorts of unprecedented milestones and potentials for escalatory spirals.

Secondly, it was one of the most advanced and longest range peer-to-peer style exchanges in history. Even in Russia, where I have noted we’ve seen the first ever truly modern near-peer conflict, with unprecedented scenes never before witnessed like when highly advanced NATO Storm Shadow missiles flew to Crimea while literally in the same moments, advanced Russian Kalibrs flew past them in the opposite direction—such an exchange has never been witnessed before, as we’ve become accustomed to seeing NATO pound on weaker, unarmed opponents over the last few decades. But no, last night Iran upped the ante even more. Because even in Russia, such exchanges at least happen directly over the Russian border onto its neighbor, where logistics and ISR is for obvious reasons much simpler.

But Iran did something unprecedented. They conducted the first ever modern, potentially hypersonic, assault on an enemy with SRBMs and MRBMs across a vast multi-domain space covering several countries and timezones, and potentially as much as 1200-2000km. This has never before been witnessed…

The point is that, just as we’re in the midst of the Houthis having proven the West’s total inability to sustain defense against mass persistent drone swarms, here too Iran may have just proven an absolutely lethal inability of Israel and the West to sustain against a potential long drawn-out Iranian strike campaign; i.e. one prosecuted over the course of days or weeks, with consistent daily mass-barrages. Such a campaign would likely critically deplete the West’s ability to shoot down even the lowest scale Shahed drone threat. Just look at Ukraine—it is going through the same lesson as we speak.

What does this mean?

One neglected consequence of this is that Iran now stands to field the ability to totally disrupt Israel’s economic way of life. If Iran were to engage in a committed campaign of mass strikes, it could totally paralyze the Israeli economy by making entire areas uninhabitable, causing mass migrations in the same way the Hamas attack led thousands of Israelis to flee.

Unlike Israel’s barbaric and savage genocide aimed primarily at civilians, last night’s Iranian attack exclusively targeted military sites. But if Iran wanted to, they could launch mass infrastructure attacks in the way Russia has now done to Ukraine’s energy grids, further compounding the economic damage. In short: Iran could mire Israel in months’ and years’ long economic malaise or outright devastation.

I suspect the degree of restraint shown by the Iranians, combined with their now-proven ability to hit well-protected Israeli targets with both their slower ballistic missiles and their hypersonics, was sufficient to convince the US military that any escalation on its part would be disastrous. It is one thing to flex rhetorically and chant “bomb-bomb-Iran” when no one on either side is actually doing anything, it’s another to start playing the attrition game when the other side has at least an order of magnitude advantage.

It’s estimated that the attack may have cost as little as one-fortieth the expense of the combined US-British-French-Israeli defense, and utilized less than one-tenth of one percent of Iran’s ballistic missiles.

I think it is far too soon to conclude, as Ha’aretz already has, that Israel has been defeated. After all, the Ukrainians have been fighting at the behest of Clown World for more than two years, and there is no reason to imagine that the Israelis are going to be let off the hook simply because the most probable outcomes look grim at the moment.

But at least we can be relieved that both the US military and the Iranian military are not simply playing along with the neocon-Netanyahu plan to escalate into the war for which the neocons have been publicly calling since the late 1990s.

The next few weeks should be informative. But regardless, it is clear that the second front in WWIII is now officially active.

DISCUSS ON SG


Iran’s Drone Strike

Serious attack or more Middle East theater?

UPDATE: It was theater.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu canceled a plan to launch immediate retaliatory strikes against Iran after speaking to US President Joe Biden by phone on Saturday night, Israeli officials have told the New York Times. According to two anonymous officials, Netanyahu’s war cabinet presented him with a list of responses to a massive drone and missile attack by Iran on Saturday evening. While some members of the cabinet reportedly pushed for an immediate military response, Netanyahu ultimately chose not to follow their advice at Biden’s request, the sources said.

UPDATE: Upon further review and the release of much more complete information, the attacks were considerably more than just theater. The much-reported drone attacks were just cover for ballistic missiles strikes on the Israeli air bases that were utilized in the bombing of the Iranian consulate. And the failure of the US military coalition to stop the attacks is almost certainly why Biden told Netanhayu not to retaliate.

The U.S. scrambled a large coalition to shoot the threats down, which included the U.S. itself, UK flying from Cyprus, France, and, controversially, Jordan which allowed them all to also use its airspace and even partook in the shoot downs.

DISCUSS ON SG