Tag Archives: Free Syrian Army

Syrian asylum seeker is jailed for life in Sweden after footage emerged of him taking part in the execution of seven men in 2012

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The criminal refugee Sakhanh, far left (circled in red)

And proggies wonder why many Americans want a refugee ban and stronger vetting processes. Go figure…

From Daily Mail: A Swedish court on Thursday sentenced a Syrian man to life imprisonment for participation in the 2012 mass execution of seven government troops in Syria.

The Stockholm District Court ruled that 46-year-old refugee Haisam Omar Sakhanh joined the armed group Suleiman Company in early May 2012, and shot a person dead with an assault rifle.

Judge Tomas Zander said the victim, who was not identified, was shot dead along with six others ‘under particularly cruel circumstances’. The seven men who were shot were part of the Syrian regime who had been captured by the independent Islamist group, which was founded in 2011.

The Islamist armed group captured the men during an attack at the beginning of May 2012, and the seven were shot to death less than two days later, according to Stockholms Tingsratt. In the years since the execution, it has been impossible to identify the victims.

Sakhanh had confessed to the shooting but said he should not be prosecuted because the death sentences had been made by a legitimate court, something the Swedish court rejected. It also rejected his defense that he had been following orders.

The group Sakanh was part of, the Suleiman Company, is a Islamic rebel group independent of Free Syrian Army that was formed in 2011 during the Syrian uprising. The group is mainly active in the Idleb countryside’s Jebel al-Zawiya region, and is led by former drug smuggler and Salafi militant Abu Suleiman al-Hamawi, according to TrackingTerrorism.org.

The court said Sakanh had been active in Italy in 2011 and 2012 where he protested against the Syrian government. 

Italian police helped investigators in Sweden to identify him via fingerprints and photos of him illegally entering the Syrian Embassy in Rome during a protest, according to the court ruling obtained by The Associated Press.

After his stint in Italy, Sakhanh returned to Syria before heading north to Sweden where he sought asylum in Sweden in 2013.  He failed to inform authorities about the executions and was given refugee status and permanent residence permit in early 2016.  He has been held in pre-trial custody since March.

In a statement, the court said Sakhanh’s crime ‘is so high that the punishment has been ruled to be life imprisonment’.  In Sweden, life imprisonment is normally ten years. The court said Sakhanh should then be expelled from the country and banned from returning.

DCG

 

 

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Insanity: Obama admin considering closer ties with Syrian jihadists

Hell bent on overthrowing the Assad regime in Syria, Obama intends to forge closer ties with the jihadist Islamic Front, whose ideology is similar to the Wahhabism of Al-Qaeda. Still doubt that the POS in the White House is not just a Muslim sympathizer, but of the most radical sort?

~Eowyn

Consortium of Defense Analysts

Note:

The Islamic Front, previously known as the Syrian Islamic Front, is an umbrella organization of Islamist rebel groups fighting the Bashar al-Assad government in Syria. Its ideology is characterized by Salafism, Jihadism, and Sunni Islamism. Salafism is often described as related to, including, or synonymous with Wahhabism — the Islamic ideology of Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda. The Islamic Front’s allies include the Free Syrian Army.

Islamic Front foundingPic taken at the founding of the Islamic Front. Symbol above speaker’s head is the Front’s logo.

John Hudson writes for Foreign Policy, Dec. 17, 2013:

As the moderate faction of the Syrian rebellion implodes under the strain of vicious infighting and diminished resources, the United States is increasingly looking to hardline Islamists in its efforts to gain leverage in Syria’s civil war. The development has alarmed U.S. observers concerned that the radical Salafists do not share U.S. values and…

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Memo to Obama from intel officials calls claim about Syrian chemical attack a FRAUD

VIPS1The Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS), formed in January 2003, is a group of current and former officials of the United States intelligence agencies that include the CIA, the U.S. State Department‘s Intelligence Bureau (INR),  and the Pentagon’s Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA). The VIPS’ Steering Group is comprised of:

  • Richard Beske
  • Gene Betit, Arlington, VA
  • Ray Close
  • Patrick G. Eddington, former CIA imagery analyst
  • Larry C. Johnson, former CIA analyst
  • David MacMichael, former CIA analyst
  • Raymond McGovern, retired CIA officer who had served under 7 U.S. presidents and presented the morning intelligence briefings at the White House to many of those presidents.
  • Greg Theilmann, former State Department intelligence official

On September 6, 2013, twelve members of the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity — all former or retired officials of various U.S. intelligence agencies including the CIA, FBI, DIA, NSA, State Department, U.S. Army, and U.S. Marine Corps — wrote a letter to Obama stating that the information they’ve gathered disputes the White House’s claim that Syria’s Assad regime had perpetrated the chemical weapon (sarin nerve gas) attack that allegedly killed hundreds of civilians in a suburb of Damascus on August 21.

More than that, the VIPS letter states that the claim is a fraud by CIA Director John Brennan.

President Lucifer, his three henchmen, and the warmongers in Congress (most notably John McCain) are using the alleged Assad chemical attack to justify a U.S. “military strike” war on Syria, in the name of “humanitarian intervention” — never mind that in so doing, America precisely will inflict untold human pain and suffering on exactly those same Syrian civilians, as a heart-rending letter from Trappist nuns in Syria points out.

First published on ConsortiumNews.com, here is the VIPS memo in its entirety. For the love of God, please help disseminate this to as many people as you can, via Facebook, Twitter, email, etc.

Thank you,

~Eowyn

world-on-fire

MEMORANDUM FOR: The President

FROM: Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS)

SUBJECT: Is Syria a Trap?

Precedence: IMMEDIATE

We regret to inform you that some of our former co-workers are telling us, categorically, that contrary to the claims of your administration, the most reliable intelligence shows that Bashar al-Assad was NOT responsible for the chemical incident that killed and injured Syrian civilians on August 21, and that British intelligence officials also know this. In writing this brief report, we choose to assume that you have not been fully informed because your advisers decided to afford you the opportunity for what is commonly known as “plausible denial.”

We have been down this road before – with President George W. Bush, to whom we addressed our first VIPS memorandumimmediately after Colin Powell’s Feb. 5, 2003 U.N. speech, in which he peddled fraudulent “intelligence” to support attacking Iraq. Then, also, we chose to give President Bush the benefit of the doubt, thinking he was being misled – or, at the least, very poorly advised.

The fraudulent nature of Powell’s speech was a no-brainer. And so, that very afternoon we strongly urged your predecessor to “widen the discussion beyond …  the circle of those advisers clearly bent on a war for which we see no compelling reason and from which we believe the unintended consequences are likely to be catastrophic.” We offer you the same advice today.

CIA Director John Brennan

CIA Director John Brennan

Our sources confirm that a chemical incident of some sort did cause fatalities and injuries on August 21 in a suburb of Damascus. They insist, however, that the incident was not the result of an attack by the Syrian Army using military-grade chemical weapons from its arsenal. That is the most salient fact, according to CIA officers working on the Syria issue. They tell us that CIA Director John Brennan is perpetrating a pre-Iraq-War-type fraud on members of Congress, the media, the public – and perhaps even you.

James ClapperJames Clapper

We have observed John Brennan closely over recent years and, sadly, we find what our former colleagues are now telling us easy to believe. Sadder still, this goes in spades for those of us who have worked with him personally; we give him zero credence. And that goes, as well, for his titular boss, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, who has admitted he gave “clearly erroneous” sworn testimony to Congress denying NSA eavesdropping on Americans.

Intelligence Summary or Political Ploy?

That Secretary of State John Kerry would invoke Clapper’s name this week in Congressional testimony, in an apparent attempt to enhance the credibility of the four-page “Government Assessment” strikes us as odd. The more so, since it was, for some unexplained reason, not Clapper but the White House that released the “assessment.”

This is not a fine point. We know how these things are done. Although the “Government Assessment” is being sold to the media as an “intelligence summary,” it is a political, not an intelligence document. The drafters, massagers, and fixers avoided presenting essential detail. Moreover, they conceded upfront that, though they pinned “high confidence” on the assessment, it still fell “short of confirmation.”

Déjà Fraud: This brings a flashback to the famous Downing Street Minutes of July 23, 2002, on Iraq, The minutes record the Richard Dearlove, then head of British intelligence, reporting to Prime Minister Tony Blair and other senior officials that President Bush had decided to remove Saddam Hussein through military action that would be “justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD.” Dearlove had gotten the word from then-CIA Director George Tenet whom he visited at CIA headquarters on July 20.

The discussion that followed centered on the ephemeral nature of the evidence, prompting Dearlove to explain: “But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy.” We are concerned that this is precisely what has happened with the “intelligence” on Syria.

The Intelligence

There is a growing body of evidence from numerous sources in the Middle East — mostly affiliated with the Syrian opposition and its supporters — providing a strong circumstantial case that the August 21 chemical incident was a pre-planned provocation by the Syrian opposition and its Saudi and Turkish supporters. The aim is reported to have been to create the kind of incident that would bring the United States into the war.

[See “Article cited by Limbaugh on Syrian chemical attack being a U.S. false flag,” Sept. 4, 2013. ~Eowyn]

According to some reports, canisters containing chemical agent were brought into a suburb of Damascus, where they were then opened. Some people in the immediate vicinity died; others were injured.

We are unaware of any reliable evidence that a Syrian military rocket capable of carrying a chemical agent was fired into the area. In fact, we are aware of no reliable physical evidence to support the claim that this was a result of a strike by a Syrian military unit with expertise in chemical weapons.

In addition, we have learned that on August 13-14, 2013, Western-sponsored opposition forces in Turkey started advance preparations for a major, irregular military surge. Initial meetings between senior opposition military commanders and Qatari, Turkish and U.S. intelligence officials took place at the converted Turkish military garrison in Antakya, Hatay Province, now used as the command center and headquarters of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and their foreign sponsors.

Senior opposition commanders who came from Istanbul pre-briefed the regional commanders on an imminent escalation in the fighting due to “a war-changing development,” which, in turn, would lead to a U.S.-led bombing of Syria.

At operations coordinating meetings at Antakya, attended by senior Turkish, Qatari and U.S. intelligence officials as well as senior commanders of the Syrian opposition, the Syrians were told that the bombing would start in a few days. Opposition leaders were ordered to prepare their forces quickly to exploit the U.S. bombing, march into Damascus, and remove the Bashar al-Assad government

The Qatari and Turkish intelligence officials assured the Syrian regional commanders that they would be provided with plenty of weapons for the coming offensive. And they were. A weapons distribution operation unprecedented in scope began in all opposition camps on August 21-23. The weapons were distributed from storehouses controlled by Qatari and Turkish intelligence under the tight supervision of U.S. intelligence officers.

Cui bono? [Who stands to gain? ~Eowyn]

That the various groups trying to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad have ample incentive to get the U.S. more deeply involved in support of that effort is clear. Until now, it has not been quite as clear that the Netanyahu government in Israel has equally powerful incentive to get Washington more deeply engaged in yet another war in the area. But with outspoken urging coming from Israel and those Americans who lobby for Israeli interests, this priority Israeli objective is becoming crystal clear.

Reporter Judi Rudoren, writing from Jerusalem in an important article in Friday’s New York Times addresses Israeli motivation in an uncommonly candid way. Her article, titled “Israel Backs Limited Strike Against Syria,” notes that the Israelis have argued, quietly, that the best outcome for Syria’s two-and-a-half-year-old civil war, at least for the moment, is no outcome. Rudoren continues:

For Jerusalem, the status quo, horrific as it may be from a humanitarian perspective, seems preferable to either a victory by Mr. Assad’s government and his Iranian backers or a strengthening of rebel groups, increasingly dominated by Sunni jihadis.

“‘This is a playoff situation in which you need both teams to lose, but at least you don’t want one to win — we’ll settle for a tie,’ said Alon Pinkas, a former Israeli consul general in New York. ‘Let them both bleed, hemorrhage to death: that’s the strategic thinking here. As long as this lingers, there’s no real threat from Syria.’”

We think this is the way Israel’s current leaders look at the situation in Syria, and that deeper U.S. involvement – albeit, initially, by “limited” military strikes – is likely to ensure that there is no early resolution of the conflict in Syria. The longer Sunni and Shia are at each other’s throats in Syria and in the wider region, the safer Israel calculates that it is.

That Syria’s main ally is Iran, with whom it has a mutual defense treaty, also plays a role in Israeli calculations. Iran’s leaders are not likely to be able to have much military impact in Syria, and Israel can highlight that as an embarrassment for Tehran.

Iran’s Role

Iran can readily be blamed by association and charged with all manner of provocation, real and imagined. Some have seen Israel’s hand in the provenance of the most damaging charges against Assad regarding chemical weapons and our experience suggests to us that such is supremely possible.

Possible also is a false-flag attack by an interested party resulting in the sinking or damaging, say, of one of the five U.S. destroyers now on patrol just west of Syria. Our mainstream media could be counted on to milk that for all it’s worth, and you would find yourself under still more pressure to widen U.S. military involvement in Syria – and perhaps beyond, against Iran.

Iran has joined those who blame the Syrian rebels for the August 21 chemical incident, and has been quick to warn the U.S. not to get more deeply involved. According to the Iranian English-channel Press TV, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javid Zarif has claimed: “The Syria crisis is a trap set by Zionist pressure groups for [the United States].”

Actually, he may be not far off the mark. But we think your advisers may be chary of entertaining this notion. Thus, we see as our continuing responsibility to try to get word to you so as to ensure that you and other decision makers are given the full picture.

Inevitable Retaliation

We hope your advisers have warned you that retaliation for attacks on Syrian are not a matter of IF, but rather WHERE and WHEN. Retaliation is inevitable. For example, terrorist strikes on U.S. embassies and other installations are likely to make what happened to the U.S. “Mission” in Benghazi on Sept. 11, 2012, look like a minor dust-up by comparison. One of us addressed this key consideration directly a week ago in an article titled “Possible Consequences of a U.S. Military Attack on Syria – Remembering the U.S. Marine Barracks Destruction in Beirut, 1983.”

For the Steering Group, Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity

Thomas Drake, Senior Executive, NSA (former)

Philip Giraldi, CIA, Operations Officer (ret.)

Matthew Hoh, former Capt., USMC, Iraq & Foreign Service Officer, Afghanistan

Larry Johnson, CIA & State Department (ret.)

W. Patrick Lang, Senior Executive and Defense Intelligence Officer, DIA (ret.)

David MacMichael, National Intelligence Council (ret.)

Ray McGovern, former US Army infantry/intelligence officer & CIA analyst (ret.)

Elizabeth Murray, Deputy National Intelligence Officer for Middle East (ret.)

Todd Pierce, US Army Judge Advocate General (ret.)

Sam Provance, former Sgt., US Army, Iraq

Coleen Rowley, Division Council & Special Agent, FBI (ret.)

Ann Wright, Col., US Army (ret); Foreign Service Officer (ret.)

******

The VIPS also wrote a memo on August 30, 2013, to General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, on “Syria and Our Oath to Defend the Constitution.” Here’s the link to that memo.

At least 6,000 Jihadist Rebels in Syria, Pose A Risk To The United States And Europe

Now you ask what’s so confusing about that. well it seems these jihadist rebels are all TANGLED UP with al-Qaida. and it seems we may have provided a lot of these weapons. Now I’m no rocket scientist , but seems to me it might not have been a good idea giving these wahoo’s even a book of MATCHeS.

————————————————————————————————–

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TODAY Our Country Is In Grave Danger!

Written by Aaron Klein

JERUSALEM – At least 6,000 jihadist rebels in Syria, many affiliated with al-Qaida, now pose a major security risk to the United States and Europe, according to Obama administration officials and Mideast experts.

Most of the news coverage of the emerging threat fails to mention U.S. and Western support, including weapons transfers, to the Syrian rebels. Al-Qaida-linked groups reportedly are prominent among the rebel ranks.

On Tuesday, Michael Morell, the Central Intelligence Agency’s second-in-command, warned in an interview with the Wall Street Journal that al-Qaida groups in Syria, along with the civil war itself, pose the greatest threat to U.S. national security.

The Wall Street Journal reported Morell said there are now more foreigners flowing into Syria each month to fight with al-Qaida-affiliated groups than there were going to Iraq to fight with al-Qaida at the height of the war there.

Meanwhile, according to UPI, Matthew G. Olsen, director of the Nati… Syria “has become really the predominant jihadist battlefield in the world.”

“The concern going forward from a threat perspective is there are individuals traveling to Syria, becoming further radicalized, becoming trained and then returning as part of really a global jihadist movement to Western Europe and, potentially, to the United States,” said Olsen at a security conference in Aspen, Colo., this month.

Gilles de Kerchove, the European Union’s counterterrorism coordinator, told the same conference, “The scale of this is completely different from what we’ve experienced in the past.”

De Kerchove spoke of jihadists flocking to Syria from Europe. He described the European jihadist travelers as self-radicalized and traveling on their own initiative.

He said the militants now pose a threat to their home countries if they attempt to return home, and he warned that European governments lack the capabilities to monitor all of them.

USA Today further reported on at least 6,000 foreign jihadists from 50 nations, including fighters from Australia, France, Britain and the U.S.

“Australians now make up the largest contingent from any developed nation in the Syrian rebel forces,” the newspaper reported. “There are around 120 French fighters in Syria, about 100 Britons and a handful of Americans.”

There is a history of foreign fighters returning home to carry out terrorist attacks, such as the 1996 bombing of Khobar Towers in Saudi Arabia, in which 19 U.S. servicemen were killed.

Unmentioned by CIA official Morell or the major news media reporting on the Syrian rebel threat is that the U.S. and Western countries have supplied vast sums of weapons to the Syrian rebels and earlier to the rebels in Libya who toppled Moammar Gadhafi’s regime.

WND reported earlier this week that U.S. and other Western arms shipments to jihadist-saturated Libyan and Syrian rebel groups may have contributed to al-Qaida’s growing worldwide threat.

Al-Qaida’s resurgence may now be culminating in the terrorist group’s reported plot to target U.S. and Western interests, prompting a weeklong shutdown of U.S. embassies across the Middle East and North Africa, WND further reported.

Indeed, informed Middle Eastern security sources told WND the current al-Qaida terrorist plot against U.S. and Western targets is a direct result of U.S.-supported efforts currently under way to purge al-Qaida affiliates from the ranks of the Syrian rebels. The sources have specific knowledge of the terrorist threat.

The sources said the U.S. has been working with Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates and other Gulf states to support a U.S.-armed Free Syria Army effort to cleanse al-Qaida affiliates from among the rebel ranks, including al-Nusra and other groups.

For months, the U.S. reportedly has been providing lethal support to the Syrian rebels amid widespread fears the Western weapons could fall into the hands of al-Qaida organizations known to work alongside the Free Syria Army.

Now with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad closing in on the insurgency targeting his regime, U.S. allies in the Gulf and throughout the Middle East are deeply concerned the freshly armed al-Qaida groups could turn their efforts from Assad to destabilizing the moderate Arab regimes.

To that affect, according to the Middle Eastern security sources, the U.S. has been heavily aiding the Free Syrian Army in its efforts to disarm or eliminate the al-Qaida groups fighting as Syrian rebels.

The Middle Eastern security sources said the current al-Qaida plot is an attempt to dissuade the U.S. from further supporting the disarming efforts.

~Steve~                           H/T           http://americac2c.com/?