If you’re like me and spend entirely too much time on Political Twitter you may have recently observed a bunch of people saying you shouldn’t post your opinion about the Afghanistan situation unless you’re an expert who has studied the nation’s dynamics in depth. Like an empire invading a nation and murdering a bunch of people for decades is some super complicated and esoteric matter that you need a PhD to have an opinion about.
War against the Soviet Union was what Hitler had wanted from the beginning. He had already made this very clear in the pages of Mein Kampf, written in the mid-1920s. As a German historian, Rolf-Dieter Müller, has convincingly demonstrated in a well-documented study, it was a war against the Soviet Union, and not against Poland, France, or Britain, that Hitler was planning to unleash in 1939. On August 11 of that year, Hitler explained to Carl J. Burckhardt, an official of the League of Nations, that “everything he undertook was directed against Russia”, and that “if the West [i.e., the French and the British] is too stupid and too blind to comprehend this, he would be forced to reach an understanding with the Russians, turn and defeat the West, and then turn back with all his strength to strike a blow against the Soviet Union”. This is in fact what happened. The West did turn out to be “too stupid and blind”, as Hitler saw it, to give him “a free hand” in the east, so he did make a deal with Moscow — the infamous “Hitler-Stalin Pact” — and then unleashed war against Poland, France, and Britain. But his ultimate objective remained the same: to attack and destroy the Soviet Union as soon as possible.
In just the last week, the situation in occupied Palestine and the larger region has seen a dramatic shift. A new wave of resistance has sparked militant mass protests not only in cities and towns across the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Gaza, but also in many Palestinian or “mixed” cities inside the 1948 borders of Israel. Protests were reported May 14 in Jordan and Lebanon, and at least nine Palestinians were killed by live-fire ammunition in West Bank protests with many more wounded.
The importance of the mobilization in all four parts of Palestine cannot be overstated. Israel is determined to crush these protests with unlimited violence, but so far the demonstrations have continued to spread.Read More »
Britain’s Armed Services Memorial is a silent, haunting place. Set in the rural beauty of Staffordshire, in an arboretum of some 30,000 trees and sweeping lawns, its Homeric figures celebrate determination and sacrifice.
The names of more than 16,000 British servicemen and women are listed. The literature says they “died in operational theatre or were targeted by terrorists.”Read More »
More than half of Yemen’s population is on the verge of starvation and likely to face acute food insecurity by mid-2021 if urgent steps are not taken by the world community to end the war in the country and provide humanitarian relief. This was revealed by a new report jointly released by the World Food Programme, UNICEF, and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on Thursday, December 3.Read More »
Universal Pictures lobby card for the 1930 American film ‘All Quiet on the Western Front’ (public domain)
World War I was termed the war that would end all wars, so great was the horror of this new, diabolical stage of industrial annihilation. We know today that without seriously addressing the causes of war, the greed for new markets and spheres of power, wars will continue, no matter what. However, WWI gave birth to an anti-war literature hitherto unknown.
Mainstream cultural life in the 21st century largely ignores wars, nor has it embraced its 20th-century anti-war cultural heritage. Yet anybody who reads the novels and poetry, listens to the music, watches the plays, looks at the paintings, or hears the songs of those who lived through the horrors of WWI and WWII cannot fail to be profoundly shocked and motivated to truly put an end to war. Perhaps that is why they are as good as absent from mainstream culture.Read More »
MARIB, YEMEN — Saudi Arabia possesses around 18 percent of the world’s petroleum reserves. That fact though has done little to stifle the Kingdom’s apparent appetite for new sources of crude. Now, following over five years of all-out war against its southern neighbor, Saudi Arabia is scrambling to secure rights over Yemen’s potentially bountiful reserves of oil.
Aramco, Saudi Arabia’s state-owned oil company, is seeking decades-long strategic agreements with the internationally recognized government in exile of Abdul Mansour al-Hadi, which is backed by the Saudi-led coalition and the United States, to gain control of Yemen substantial oil and gas reserves, particularly in the oil-rich provinces of al-Jawf, Marib, Shabwa, and Hadramout, according to officials. The move could inflame enough anger among Yemen’s many warring and fractious parties to band together against what is increasingly viewed as an existential threat to Yemen’s sovereignty.Read More »
The AKP government is once again using the refugees as a bargaining chip following the losses in Idlib on Feb. 27. Saying that it can no longer hold the refugees and will open the borders, the AKP once again has showed that it’s using the refugees as a political tool and a weapon. Peoples’ Democratic Party website.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s latest gamble in Syria’s civil war appears to have come up snake eyes. Instead of halting the Damascus government’s siege of the last rebel held province, Idlib, Turkey has backed off, and Ankara’s Syrian adventure is fueling growing domestic resistance to the powerful autocrat.
The crisis began Feb. 25, when anti-government rebels, openly backed by Turkish troops, artillery, and armor, attacked the Syrian Army at the strategic town of Saraqeb, the junction of Highways 4 and 5 linking Aleppo to Damascus and the Mediterranean. The same day, Russian warplanes in Southern Idlib were fired upon by MANPADS (man portable air-defense systems), anti-aircraft weapons from Turkish military outposts. The Russian air base at Khmeimim was also attacked by MANPADS and armed Turkish drones.
At least 33 Turkish soldiers have been killed and an unspecified number of soldiers were injured in an airstrike in Syria’s Idlib province. Turkish officials blamed the strike to the Syrian military. Casualties from the strike were being treated at hospitals in the border town of Reyhanli.
Turkish officials have called the NATO secretary-general and the U.S. national security adviser in relation to the events in Idlib, Turkish Anadolu Agency (AA) reported.
Citing Hatay province Governor Rahmi Dogan the AA said: “In Idlib, Turkey’s armed forces were targeted by the regime elements in an airstrike.” The governor was talking to media on Thursday.
Hatay is the Turkish province bordering Idlib.Read More »