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ED, Re your query, I'm afraid I'm out of touch with current conditions in Pakistan. I will pass on your query to someone able to answer it, and will forward the answer to you.
Thank you, Col Lang, for reposting this 2016 piece on Xmas. I would hope that Xmas is still celebrated in the same way in Pakistan (and the Middle East).
Razan al-Najjar died on Friday, June 1st. She was a 21-year old Palestinian nurse and paramedic. And a mother. She was killed while running (along with other paramedics) towards the Gaza border fence with Israel. They were running to treat... Continue reading
Posted Jun 3, 2018 at Sic Semper Tyrannis
Amidst all this sound and fury, a couple of simple questions stand out. First question: Why Douma? The answer, I would submit, is that the recent evacuations of civilians from the area permitted the White Helmets, acting in their 'humanitarian' role, to access Douma and stage this drama. Second question: Why Douma? Why would the Syrian government and its military attack with chemical weapons a town that they have surrounded, and which could fall to them at any moment? That these two simple questions and their answers are lost in the hullabaloo being raised in the West shows how little the public in this part of the world knows or cares about the Syrian conflict. Or anything else, for that matter, beyond their creature comforts.
I would suggest that the first thing you need to do to "understand" is to empty your "inquiring mind" of the prejudices it has. Most of them implanted by the US media. Apart from this blog, I would suggest frequent visits to the blog of Patrick Armstrong (eg,
Thank you for bringing back the comments section, Col Lang. Feels like 'home' again!
Toggle Commented Apr 8, 2018 on By popular demand ----- at Sic Semper Tyrannis
What Ms Nauert and her bosses are missing is that very few people take the USA seriously any more in the international sphere. No wonder Putin is so amused in that video JohnA linked to (@ #1). About the only thing left for the US establishment to make people take them seriously is to threaten to blow up the world. The trouble is they don't even realise that this will be the end result if they use the nukes they like to wave around. That's what Putin has been trying to make them understand - so far without much success.
It is posts such as this that make SST such a remarkable and unmatched site. Long may it continue! Our thanks are due to Col Lang!
English Outsider (@31) "...Such a lot we don't know..." If you'd like to know more about Russia, I would suggest a small donation to Inessa S. You can learn more about her website at . As an example, she recently put up on her website a Russian documentary entitled World Order 2018, which is a 1.5 hour interview with Vladimir Putin on recent events. With sites like SST and Inessa's available on the web, no one can advance the excuse that they don't really know what is going on in the world today.
This post was about Mattis being the only "grown-up in the room". I'm not sure that's something to be reassured about. Brian Cloughley is a seasoned military writer and analyst. A few years ago he wrote a piece on Mattis that was not very complimentary. If even half of it is right, we should all be worried. The article is at:
Crooke is correct in saying that US foreign and defence policies are now out of the hands of the President of the USA, and have been taken over by the 'quartet of generals'. This is ominous for the world. The fact that one of the quartet appears to be Gen Petraeus makes it even more dangerous. These US generals have shown themselves to be shallow-minded believers in a doctrine of US invincibility and universal dominance that is no longer applicable to the world we live in. It is our misfortune that nothing Putin says or does will change their minds. US military and financial power is used mainly to maintain the US global empire. This worked best in countries ruled by dictators or an oligarchy, since their rulers and elite reaped the advantages accruing from this. The alternative that a resurgent China is presenting through its Belt and Road plans benefits the people of a country, and not just its ruling class. As people everywhere acquire more political rights and power, they will turn increasingly towards what China offers. The US global empire will gradually crumble. Will the US generals controlling its policy seek to stop and reverse this trend by asserting US military power in the only way left - using nuclear weapons? This is where the danger in the case of North Korea arises, as highlighted by Crooke. An angle he has not dealt with is that Russia may well prefer to see the US act thus. An exchange of nuclear weapons between the US and North Korea may appear to Vladimir Putin as preferable to the increasing risk of such an exchange between the US and Russia, as evidenced by evolving US military policy and the attitude of its generals. It is likely that a war between North Korea and the US will bring the latter back to reality, just as the Suez war did to the British.
Re: #21. That's part of the burden of running an open blog!
Congratulations, Col Lang! A well-deserved milestone. Look forward to many more!
Col Lang (#39), It depends on how much leverage Russia has over Turkey. The key is how other powers deal with the Kurds, Turkey's bête noire. The US seems to have decided to throw in its lot with the Kurds. I suppose this was the only way in which Central Command could maintain a foothold in Syria. Also, Israel pushed US policy in this direction. But it will have repercussions as far as Turkey is concerned. If Turkey believes it cannot depend on the US, it will be forced to turn to Russia. So far, Turkey has tried to play both sides of the fence, but there are obvious limits to how long it can continue this. Russia is taking advantage of this US move; it will try and push Turkey into making a clear choice. If Turkey believes that it cannot deal with what it perceives as the Kurdish threat without Russian backing, it will be forced to accept Russia's terms. This is looking more and more likely.
David, I am glad you agree with my position (Comment #56). Especially pertinent is your comment: "... we are dealing with people who have been impelled to subvert the constitutional order...". It is obvious to any objective and unbiased observer that both the US and British intelligence organizations have, for some time, been operating outside their charters (in the vernacular, it could be said they'd 'gone rogue'). Instead of working against hostile foreign countries, they have been targetting their own government agencies and individuals. (Because some persons in their top echelons became convinced that hostile foreigners had penetrated these ruling structures). Nothing can weaken a country as much as such beliefs and actions. Opponents of the West must be amazed at their good fortune, while its friends can only look on in amazement and chagrin as the West's intelligence apparatus tears itself apart. Good soldier that he is, TTG can't imagine that this debacle is self-inflicted, and wasn't deliberately caused by hostile quarters.
I don't know much about this controversy - and, frankly, care even less. However, the following lines in the post caught my eye: In addition to this intelligence, the IC had at that time intelligence from Estonia (and maybe others) about Page’s June trip to Moscow, the Dutch observation of Cozy Bear activities and the report from Australia about Popadopoulis’ drunken ramblings in a London bar. "This intelligence" refers to Brennan. I would not trust anything associated with Mr Brennan. He is involved up to his eyebrows in all these shenanigans, and his motives are clearly crooked. To advance him as a source is to taint the story irredeemably. As for the rest of the quote, Estonia as a "source" - for crying out loud! We have already read about those truly weird Dutch observations. And, to top it all, we have these drunken ramblings advanced as proof! If this is the kind of stuff the whole story is based on, then it's obviously all poppycock! That it should be taken seriously enough to warrant posts on SST is beyond weird!
It is clear that the Syrians could not have downed the Israeli jet (and damaged others) without Russian assistance (both in equipment and advisers). The probable reason the Russians provided this assistance at this time is that they wanted to send a message. But the Russians don't need this method to send Israel a message. So, who were they sending the message to? My opinion is that the message the Russians sent by assisting in the downing of the F-16 was to the US. If so, it probably relates to the US bombing carried out near Deir el Zour the other day ( The Russian defence ministry, soon after the US bombing, said that the Syrian tribesmen who were bombed had "failed to co-ordinate their action with the Russian military". It left unsaid what such coordination would have entailed. Perhaps they are clarifying this point now. If the above assessment is correct, we should see a cessation of US air action over Syria in the future. If it does occur, we should see the Russian military respond. That would lead to a dangerous confrontation.
Toggle Commented Feb 12, 2018 on A Game Changer at Sic Semper Tyrannis
Col Lang, They are indeed "narrow thinkers", but I think the problem runs deeper. They seem to be stuck in the rut of a past era. When the US was indeed the paramount military power on the globe, and the US military reigned supreme. They can't seem to accept the reality of the world as it is now. Of course, these policies ensure that they continue to be well-funded, even if the US is bankrupting itself in the process.
Col Lang, Congratulations! For me this was 'your' spaceship in splendid flight. I would not have known, or been interested in, this endeavour but for your drawing attention to the subject in your posts. Watching the videos was an exciting and moving experience. A remarkable achievement!
Roman Filipov was a brave soldier, a model for all patriots who fight (and sometimes) give their lives for their country. Such soldiers don't die. They live on, as does Roman Filipov!
This is a Foreign Policy Sitrep, a short report on important news items. I presume they have good reasons for their skepticism. I'm afraid if I have to choose between your version and Foreign Policy's, I'd much rather go with Foreign Policy. On the face of it, Volksrant's tale sounds totally fanciful. In fact, a typical "journalistic device".
Toggle Commented Jan 30, 2018 on INCONCEIVABLE! - TTG at Sic Semper Tyrannis
Re the Volksrant extract that starts off this thread. I see the following in today's Foreign Policy Sitrep: Reading between the lines of the Nieuwsuur and de Volkskrant expose, there’s good reason to be skeptical of this story.... If this reasonably well-regarded US magazine (by no means pro-Russian) says this about the Dutch story, one wonders what was the point of quoting this and building a post on it.
Toggle Commented Jan 30, 2018 on INCONCEIVABLE! - TTG at Sic Semper Tyrannis
Col Lang, It seems to me that it's "the generals and the COIN nuts" who are pushing to continue to keep fighting in Afghanistan rather than President Trump. He appears to be just going along. Obviously, neither cares too much about the lives (and limbs) of the American soldiers put at risk. And, of course, even less about the Afghans, most of them civilians. Incidentally, the media reports regarding the huge bomb detonated by the Taliban in Kabul the other day played up the numbers of "Afghans" killed and wounded, without clarifying that the explosion occurred in an area occupied by government buildings (including intelligence agencies, mostly staffed by 'Northerners' rather than Pashtuns, who form the Taliban).
It seems Pakistan was waiting for an excuse to chuck the unfortunate Afghan refugees out. Trump seems to have provided them with that. Whether Pakistan closes the air and ground route for the US into Afghanistan will not matter if a lot of the Afghans pushed into Afghanistan join the Taliban, as is quite likely. The Taliban will force US troops out of Afghanistan.
Col Lang and all frequenters of SST, Wishing you all a Merry Xmas and a Very Happy New Year!
Toggle Commented Dec 24, 2017 on The Huron Carol at Sic Semper Tyrannis