Eric Draitser of StopImperialism.org provides his commentary (Jan. 14, 2016) on the latest report documenting US bombings around the world. Draitser argues that the findings of the report are no surprise to anyone who has been paying attention, and that they merely reinforce the understanding that US power is projected through violence and coercion. He notes that this fact exposes US hypocrisy as it blasts Russia, China, North Korea and other countries for ‘aggression’ and ‘belligerence.’
Part 1 of this article focused on the death of Zahran Alloush, commander of the Jaish al-Islam group in the Damascus suburbs, and his organization’s laundry list of crimes against the Syrian people, as well as his long-standing connections to Saudi Arabia. Part 2 below highlights the implications of his death, among other recent developments, and how it will translate on the battlefield.
The assassination of Zahran Alloush, commander of the Jaish al-Islam Salafist group, has led to a major change on the ground in Syria. Seemingly everywhere one looks, the Syrian Arab Army is on the offensive, moving to reclaim towns and cities it had once conceded to the rebel-terrorist alliance fighting against the Syrian Government. Even the most hardened anti-Assad crusader must admit that the situation of the rebel-terrorists today is much worse than it was four months ago when the Russian engagement in Syria first began.
Indeed, Alloush’s death is not the only one that has had a tangible impact on the ground. Just weeks after the targeted assassination of Alloush and a number of other high-ranking commanders of the Jaish al-Islam organization, one of the leaders of the equally criminal Ahrar al-Sham was assassinated in Homs province. With his death, Ahrar al-Sham has also been reeling, desperately trying to cling to territory in the face of a long expected counter-offensive by the Syrian army in tandem with air strikes from its Russian allies.
These developments have contributed in no small part to the significant political shift from the US and its western allies who have, for all intents and purposes, dropped the “Assad must go” precondition for negotiations. It should be noted that this move owes directly to the significant assaults upon what must be regarded as Saudi-Qatari proxies in the Syrian war, specifically Jaish al-Islam and Jaish-al Fatah (of which Ahrar al-Sham is a member). Only because of the significant tactical victories against these gulf proxies is there now a real opportunity for a resolution to the war in Syria.
This week Eric sits down with Steven Donziger, the US spokesman and legal adviser for the Ecuadorian communities suing Chevron over its gross environmental pollution since the 1960s. The case has made international headlines as it is the first of its kind to see indigenous communities winning a judgment against an oil company for environmental degradation. Eric and Steven discuss the specifics of the case and the ways in which Chevron has attempted to use legal maneuvering and trickery to avoid paying a massive settlement to those affected. The conversation also touches on the parallels between this case and others, as well as the long-term effects of the damage caused by Texaco/Chevron. All this and much more in this important episode of CounterPunch Radio.
Intro and outtro by David Vest.
Eric Draitser of StopImperialism.org provides his commentary (Jan. 12, 2016) on the Istanbul bombing, the latest terror attack to strike Turkey. Draitser explains that this tragedy further underscores the connection between Turkey and ISIS/ISIL, demonstrating that Turkey’s policy of supporting terrorism in Syria is having severe repercussions for the country. Draitser also notes that this will likely be used as a pretext by Erdogan to further attack the Kurds both in Turkey and Syria.
Eric Draitser of StopImperialism.org appears on WPFW 89.3 FM Washington DC (Jan. 8, 2016) with Marcel Cartier to discuss the refugee issue, global terrorism, and the role of the US and the Empire in fomenting them. Eric and Marcel also spend a significant amount of time discussing Donald Trump’s rise to presidential frontrunner, and what that means for the future of US politics. All this and much more, including guest phone calls in this nearly hour long discussion.