Climate change played key role in Syrian civil war and helped Brexit, Al Gore says, http://www.sanluisobispo.com/news/nation-world/national/article140523093.htmlAn 24 Mar 17, historic drought in Syria led to that nation’s civil war, which, in turn, helped Brexit pass in England, according to former United States Vice President Al Gore who explained his theory at a conference in London this week.
Gore, who has long argued that humans are causing climate change, won an Oscar for his climate-change documentary “An Inconvenient Truth.”
“From 2006 to 2010, 60 percent of the farms in Syria were destroyed and had to be abandoned. Eighty percent of the livestock were killed. The drought in the eastern Mediterranean is the worst ever recorded,” Gore said according to several press reports.
The drought, Gore says, forced more than a million Syrians into cities where they “collided” with refugees from the Iraq War, setting the stage for the Syrian Civil War. Gore said that WikiLeaks documents revealed internal conversations among the Syrian government.
“They were saying to one another, ‘We can’t handle this. There’s going to be a social explosion.’ There are other causes of the Syrian civil war,” Gore said, “but this was the principle one.”
That conflict, which began in July 2011, has killed more than 450,000 Syrians and displaced more than 12 million Syrians, according to Al-Jazeera. CNN reports more than 4.8 million Syrians have left the country due to the conflict, which started as a government crackdown in response to protests.
Many of those fleeing the country have migrated to Europe, creating crises in several European nations. That, Gore says, helped lead to Brexit. In June of 2016, citizens of the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union. Many linked the ongoing refugee crisis to the vote to leave.
“It has unleashed with other factors this incredible flow of refugees into Europe, which is creating political instability in Europe,” Gore said, “and which contributed in some ways to the desire of some in the U.K., to say, ‘Wow, we’re not sure we want to be a part of that anymore.’ ”
The Trump administration does not share Gore’s views on human-caused climate change and has already rolled back numerous Obama-era environmental protections.
Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt told CNBC that carbon dioxide is not a primary contributor to global warming. Mick Mulvaney, Trump’s budget director, said climate change research programs are “a waste of your money” while unveiling Trump’s first budget proposal.
“Regarding the questions as to climate change, I think the President was fairly straightforward. We’re not spending money on that anymore. We consider that to be a waste of your money to go out and do that,” Mulvaney said.
How Russia Is Turning Syria into a Major Naval Base for Nuclear Warships (and Israel Is Worried), National Interest, Michael Peck, 18 Mar 17, During the 1970s, the Syrian naval base of Tartus became a major port servicing warships of the Soviet Union’s Fifth Mediterranean squadron.
The Soviet Union is gone, and so is Syria as a unified nation. But Russia is back, and it’s building up Tartus again as a naval base that can handle Russia’s largest nuclear-powered ships.
Already, Israel says the Tartus base is affecting its naval operations. U.S. and NATO operations could be next.
Under the forty-nine-year agreement inked late last year by Russia and Syria, “the maximum number of the Russian warships allowed at the Russian naval facility at one time is 11, including nuclear-powered warships, providing that nuclear and ecological security rules are observed,” according to Russia’s RT news site. Russia will also be allowed to expand port facilities to accommodate the vessels.
The specification allowing nuclear-powered warships means that Russia wants to be able to base in Syria large surface ships, namely Kirov-class nuclear-powered battle cruisers, as well as nuclear submarines.
In addition, the treaty allows “Russia is allowed to bring in and out any kind of ‘weaponry, ammunition, devices and materials’ to provide security for the facility staff, crew, and their families throughout the territory of the Syrian Arab Republic ‘without any duties or levies,’” according to RT.
Expansion of the port will take about five years, according to an anonymous source cited in Russia’s Sputnik News. “The source added that the works would focus on dredging operations to allow cruisers and even possibly aircraft carriers to use the facility’s infrastructure,” Sputnik News reported. “According to the source, Russia also needs to develop the facility’s ground infrastructure, through construction of canalization, electricity generation facilities and barracks for the servicemen.”
Sputnik News also listed other provisions of the agreement. These include:
• Russia will be responsible for sea and air security of the base, while Syria handles the land defenses.
• Russia can deploy “temporary mobile outposts” beyond the base, as long as they coordinate them with the Syrians.
• Russia can renovate the base at will, including underwater construction, and build offshore platforms.
• Upon Syrian request, Russia will send specialists to service Syrian warships, conduct search and rescue in Syrian waters, and organize the defense of Tartus.
• Syria agrees not to “make any objections related to the military activities of the base, which will also be beyond Damascus’ jurisdiction.”
• “Syria also pledges to solve any conflicts that may arise if a third party objects to the activities of the base.”
The Tartus deal is significant on several levels…… http://nationalinterest.org/blog/the-buzz/how-russia-turning-syria-major-naval-base-nuclear-warships-19813
Samuel Oakford: US promised it wouldn’t use Depleted Uranium in Syria. But then it did. February 14, 2017. Officials have confirmed that the US military – despite vowing not to use controversial Depleted Uranium (DU) weapons on the battlefield in Iraq and Syria – fired thousands of rounds of such munitions during two high-profile raids on oil trucks in Islamic State-controlled Syria in late 2015. The air assaults mark the first confirmed use of this armament since the 2003 Iraq invasion, when hundreds of thousands of rounds were fired, leading to outrage among local communities which alleged that toxic remnants caused both cancer and birth defects.https://airwars.org/news/depleteduranium1/
ICBUW: United States confirms that it has fired depleted uranium in Syria 21 October 2016. US admits that it fired DU on two occasions in November 2015, contrary to earlier claims; military justification for use unclear after target analysis; ICBUW and PAX call for full disclosure to facilitate harm reduction measures; Russia takes advantage of news to distract from its own conduct in the conflict. http://www.bandepleteduranium.org/en/united-states-confirms-fired-du-syria
The US has finally confirmed that it has fired DU ammunition Syria, after it had earlier stated that the weapons would not be used. US Central Command (CENTCOM) has acknowledged that DU was fired on two dates – the 18 and 23 November 2015. Between the strikes on the two dates, 5,100 rounds of 30mm DU ammunition were used by A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft. This equates to 1,524kg of DU. CENTCOM said that the ammunition was selected because of the “nature of the targets”.
The news comes as governments are debating a UN General Assemblyresolution on DU weapons in New York. And, although DU use has only been admitted on two dates, ICBUW and PAX are concerned that this disclosure could be the sign that DU has, or will, be used more widely in the conflict.
In March 2015, and following the deployment of A-10s to the conflict, the US hadconfirmed to journalists that the aircraft would not be armed with DU, stating:“U.S. and Coalition aircraft have not been and will not be using depleted uranium munitions in Iraq or Syria during Operation Inherent Resolve.” Justifying the decision, CENTCOM public affairs explained that: “The ammunition is developed to destroy tanks on a conventional battlefield; Daesh does not possess large numbers of tanks.”
CENTCOM confirms DU use IRIN news finally extracted the confirmation that DU had been used from CENTCOM on October 20, and after weeks of denials. The revelations first came to light after an aide to Congresswoman Martha McSally (Rep, AZ) – herself a former A-10 combat pilot – responded to a question from DU activist, and constituent, Jack Cohen-Joppa. However a number of CENTCOM sources initially denied that the information was accurate. Confirming that the data were indeed accurate, a spokesperson for CENTCOM said earlier denials were due to “an error in reporting down range.”
“Without the chance disclosure from McSally’s office, and the dogged pursuit of CENTCOM by IRIN, the US would not have volunteered this data,” said ICBUW Coordinator Doug Weir. “Sadly this is typical of the poor transparency we have seen from the US and we urge CENTCOM and the Coalition to clarify their policy on DU use in Syria and explain how its use fits with its public claims that the ammunition is solely for use against armoured targets.”
Unclear why DU was used The US regularly states that DU ammunition is specifically used only for engaging armoured targets, in accordance with its own legal guidelines, although evidence from a number of conflicts has shown that these guidelines are commonly ignored……..http://www.bandepleteduranium.org/en/united-states-confirms-fired-du-syria
Going Beyond Propaganda. Nuclear Conflict, Deception or Real Threat? Pentagon: A “Preemptive” Nuclear Strike against Russia is still Valid By Federico Pieraccini Global Research, October 16, 2016 The events in the Middle East, Syria and Aleppo are the focus of global attention. Rarely has a battle been so decisive to the outcome of a war and the fate of hundreds of millions of people around the world
US sending nuclear-capable B-52 bombers to ISIS fight http://www.foxnews.com/world/2016/03/04/us-sending-nuclear-capable-b-52-bombers-to-isis-fight.html The United States is sending nuclear-capable B-52 aircraft to drop bombs on the Islamic State terror group, defense officials confirmed to Fox News Friday. 4 Mar 16
The B-52 Stratofortress will start its first bombing campaign against ISIS in April, the Air Force Times reports. It’s not clear how many B-52s or airmen will be involved.
Officials say the aircraft will replace nuclear-capable B-1 Lancers hitting ISIS targets in Iraq and Syria.
The Lancers returned to home bases in the U.S. in January. They flew only 3% of all strike missions against ISIS, but had dropped 40% of the bombs and other munitions. B-1s could loiter over the battlefield for 10 hours, much longer than jet fighters, and also could fly supersonic, reaching targets across Iraq and Syria within minutes.
“The B-1s are rotated out, so they’re not here right now, they’ve gone back to do some upgrades,” Lieutenant General Charles Q. Brown Jr., commander at U.S. Air Forces Central Command, told reporters. Each B-52 can carry up to 70,000 pounds of payload, officials say. The aircraft, sometimes nicknamed the “Big Ugly Fat Fella,” first took to the skies in 1954 and regularly takes part in military exercises around the world.
The B-52s are based in Louisiana and North Dakota.
Fox News’ Lucas Tomlinson contributed to this report.
Red Teaming Nuclear Intelligence: The Suspected Syrian Reactor, Council on Foreign Relations by Micah Zenko March 1, 2016 In former CIA and NSA director Gen. Michael Hayden’s new memoir,Playing to the Edge: American Intelligence in the Age of Terror, he describes the case of Al Kibar, in which Israeli officials informed the United States in 2007 about a building under construction in Syria that they thought was a nuclear reactor. Hayden writes, “Then we gave the data to a red team, dedicated contrarians, and directed they come up with an alternative explanation. Build an alternative case as to why it’s not a nuclear reactor; why it’s not intended to produce plutonium for a weapon; why North Korea is not involved.” (p. 258)
For the full story of the red teaming of Al Kibar, read this excerpt from my book—based upon interviews with senior Bush administration officials—Red Team: How to Succeed by Thinking Like the Enemy.
Red teaming is not only about using a devil’s advocate to scrutinize and challenge day-to-day operations. For institutions facing a significant decision, red teaming may also be a one-time effort. We can see how a properly administrated red team can help ensure that a crucial decision is the right one by studying the following example found in recent national security decision making.
In April 2007, Israeli national security officials surprised their American counterparts by informing them about a large building under construction at Al Kibar in a valley in the eastern desert of Syria. In oneon- one briefings, the Israeli officials provided dozens of internal and external color photographs dating back to before 2003. The evidence strongly suggested that the building was a nuclear reactor, remarkably similar to the gas-cooled, graphite-moderated reactor in Yongbyon, North Korea. Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert then delivered his request to President George W. Bush: “George, I’m asking you to bomb the compound.”………http://blogs.cfr.org/zenko/2016/03/01/red-teaming-nuclear-intelligence-suspected-syrian-reactor/
Great news: Bashar al-Assad still developing nuclear weapons Hot Air JANUARY 12, 2015 BY NOAH ROTHMAN There is some troubling news out of the Levant this week, as if the West needed any more of that. According to a thorough report in Der Spiegel based on documents obtained from “Western intelligence agencies,” Bashar al-Assad’s Syria is busily developing a nuclear weapon.
“Analysts say that the Syrian atomic weapon program has continued in a secret, underground location,” Der Spiegel reported. “According to information they have obtained, approximately 8,000 fuel rods are stored there. Furthermore, a new reactor or an enrichment facility has very likely been built at the site — a development of incalculable geopolitical consequences.”
ccording to intelligence agency analysis, construction of the facility began back in 2009. The work, their findings suggest, was disguised from the very beginning, with excavated sand being disposed of at various sites, apparently to make it more difficult for observers from above to tell how deeply they were digging. Furthermore, the entrances to the facility were guarded by the military, which turned out to be a necessary precaution. In the spring of 2013, the region around Qusayr saw heavy fighting. But the area surrounding the project in the mines was held, despite heavy losses suffered by elite Hezbollah units stationed there.
The most recent satellite images show six structures: a guard house and five sheds, three of which conceal entrances to the facility below. The site also has special access to the power grid, connected to the nearby city of Blosah. A particularly suspicious detail is the deep well which connects the facility with Zaita Lake, four kilometers away. Such a connection is unnecessary for a conventional weapons cache, but it is essential for a nuclear facility.
But the clearest proof that it is a nuclear facility comes from radio traffic recently intercepted by a network of spies. A voice identified as belonging to a high-ranking Hezbollah functionary can be heard referring to the “atomic factory” and mentions Qusayr. The Hezbollah man is clearly familiar with the site. And he frequently provides telephone updates to a particularly important man: Ibrahim Othman, the head of the Syrian Atomic Energy Commission……….http://hotai
Report: Assad Building Secret Nuclear Plant, Arutz Sheva German magazine says Syrian President is building a secret underground plant with the aim of developing nuclear weapons. By Elad Benari, 9 Jan 15, Canada Intelligence suggests that Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad is building a secret underground plant with the aim of developing nuclear weapons, Germany’s Spiegel news magazine said Friday, according to AFP.
Citing information made available by unidentified intelligence sources,Spiegel said the plant was in an inaccessible mountain region in the westof the war-ravaged country, two kilometers (1.2 miles) from the Lebanese border.
It is deep underground, near the town of Qusayr and has access to electricity and water supplies, the magazine said in a pre-released version of the story released ahead of Saturday’s publication.
It said it had had access to “exclusive documents”, satellite photographsand intercepted conversations thanks to intelligence sources.
Western experts suspect, based on the documents, that a reactor or an enrichment plant could be the aim of the project, whose codename is “Zamzam”, Spiegel said.
The Syrian regime has transferred 8,000 fuel rods to the plant that had been planned for a facility at Al-Kibar, it added.
In 2007, a bombing raid on an undeclared Syrian nuclear facility at Al-Kibar was widely understood to have been an Israeli strike, but it was never acknowledged by the Jewish state.
Since then, Western intelligence agencies detected another nuclear plant in Syria, this time in a Damascus suburb……..http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/189739#.VLGM9dLF8nk
Hezbollah blames Israel for killing of five nuclear engineers in Syria One of the scientists was Iranian; Hezbollah suspects Syrian rebels working for Israel carried out the attack. By Haaretz | Nov. 11, 2014 Hezbollah is blaming Israel for the deaths of five nuclear engineers, four Syrians and one Iranian, on Monday in Damascus.
Initial Syrian reports said that four Syrians were killed in an ambush, but later Syrian state television admitted that a fifth scientist, an Iranian, was also among the victims.
The five were killed after gunmen opened fire on their bus in an area not affected by the fighting between rebel groups and Syrian President Bashar Assad’s forces.
“We can confirm that five scientific experts were martyred by terrorists as part of the ongoing plots of the Zionist entity,” an unnamed Hezbollah commander based in Beirut said in a report published Tuesday by the . Sydney Morning Herald……….
Last May, a military and scientific research center in Damascus was struck in an attack attributed to Israel. In January, Syrian officials accused Israel of striking another scientific research center northwest of Damascus.
In 2007, Israel bombed a suspected Syrian nuclear reactor — an attack confirmed by U.S. officials. Israel has never commented on the incident. http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/1.625906
Double standard: Disarming Syria puts Israel’s nuclear and chemical arsenal in the spotlight, MondoWeiss Annie Robbins on September 14, 2013 “.…..As John Kerry meets with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Geneva today to discuss the dismantling of Syria’s chemical weapons stockpile the Wall Street Journal spotlights a “ripple effect“, the focus on Israel’s nuclear program:
GENEVA—The joint U.S. Russian push to dismantle Syria’s chemical weapons is starting to have ripple effects, focusing attention on the suspected arsenal of Israel.……
But a frequent complaint among Arab countries in the region—that Israel has an undeclared but presumed nuclear-weapons program—has already resurfaced.
Syria’s government has hinted that it could raise Israel’s suspected arsenal of nuclear and other weapons as an international issue ………
Israel’s regional enemies have insisted they need chemical weapons to counter the threat of the nuclear weapons Israel is believed to possess. No other Middle East nation is thought to have such an arsenal. http://mondoweiss.net/2013/09/double-standard-disarming-syria-puts-israels-nuclear-and-chemical-arsenal-in-the-spotlight.html
Five Ways a Wider Syrian War Could Go Nuclear Truth Dig, By Harvey Wasserman, 13 Sept 13, In the wake of an apparent break in the march to a wider war, the reality of a nuclear dimension in Syria remains largely unspoken.
There are at least five key reasons why American military intervention in Syria’s civil war could go nuclear:
(1) There’s a reactor near Damascus.
It is relatively small, by most accounts containing about a kilogram (2.2 pounds) of weapons-grade uranium. That’s not much in the scheme of things when it comes to building an atomic bomb. But as Alexsandr Lukashevich of the Russian Foreign Ministryputs it, “If a warhead, by design or by chance, were to hit the Miniature Neutron Source Reactor (MSNR) near Damascus, the consequences could be catastrophic.”……
(2) Despite Secretary of State John Kerry’s promise of an “unbelievably limited” attack, once the U.S. military commits to action in Syria, it is unlikely to hold back any of its tactical arsenal. That would almost certainly include depleted uranium (DU).
When shells made of this super-hard material penetrate armored vehicles, hardened bunkers and other structures, the DU disperses into fine radioactive particulates that are easily inhaled. Wherever deployed—as in Yugoslavia, Iraq and Afghanistan—DU inflicts horrifying health consequences, including cancer among people of all ages and birth defects among children born well after its use. Uranium-238 has a half-life of 4.5 billion years, imposing virtually permanent contamination.
Should DU weaponry be used yet again, this time in Syria, the contamination would be widespread and irreversible. Many thousands of innocent people—including the countless unborn—would suffer greatly. As with all radioactive fallout, the lethal effects will stretch through the generations.
(3) When the world’s superpowers collide, nuclear war is always a possibility.
At this point, the U.S. and Russia appear to be coming together. But in this too-often irrational global tinderbox, the stakes could not be higher.
In such situations, we hope for the best, but can’t lose sight of the potential worst………
(4) In the bottomless turbulence that defines today’s Middle East, the Americans and Russians so far seem to retain some shreds of rationality. But given the Peaceful Atom’s half century of weapons-grade proliferation, we cannot know which nations or marginal groups might now have atomic devices and what random impulses might prompt their use.
In a profoundly unpredictable world, each of the more than 400 commercial-sized reactors still operating continues to produce radioactive materials that could fuel a nuclear weapon.
Each of those reactors is itself a profoundly vulnerable target. Should the situation in Syria devolve to a wider war, the likelihood of a freelance atomic “situation” becomes all too probable.
(5) While the world’s attention is focused on Syria, the global-scale disaster at Fukushima spirals out of control.
The more serious the crisis in Syria, the more it will divert attention from an existing nuclear disaster. http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/five_ways_a_wider_syrian_war_could_go_nuclear_20130913/
Where’s the proof? Classified, says US, though poised to strike despite lack of evidence The State Journal, BEIRUT (AP) 9 Sept 13, — The U.S. government insists it has the intelligence to prove it, but the American public has yet to see a single piece of concrete evidence — no satellite imagery, no transcripts of Syrian military communications — connecting the government of President Bashar Assad to the alleged chemical weapons attack last month that killed hundreds of people.
In the absence of such evidence, Damascus and its ally Russia have aggressively pushed another scenario: that rebels carried out the Aug. 21 chemical attack. Neither has produced evidence for that case, either. That’s left more questions than answers as the U.S. threatens a possible military strike.
The early morning assault in a rebel-held Damascus suburb known as Ghouta was said to be the deadliest chemical weapons attack in Syria’s 2½-year civil war. Survivors’ accounts, photographs of many of the dead wrapped peacefully in white sheets and dozens of videos showing victims in spasms and gasping for breath shocked the world and moved President Barack Obama to call for action because the use of chemical weapons crossed the red line he had drawn a year earlier.
Yet one week after Secretary of State John Kerry outlined the case against Assad, Americans — at least those without access to classified reports — haven’t seen a shred of his proof.
There is open-source evidence that provides clues about the attack, including videos of the rockets that analysts believe were likely used. U.S. officials on Saturday released a compilation of videos showing victims, including children, exhibiting what appear to be symptoms of nerve gas poisoning. Some experts think the size of the strike, and the amount of toxic chemicals that appear to have been delivered, make it doubtful that the rebels could have carried it out. http://www.state-journal.com/ap%20general%20news/2013/09/08/sunday-september-8-2013
WORLD WAR 3 IS STARTING I have spoken to my connections in the Russian media and they are all confirming that World War 3 is the hottest topic right now amid the populace, and the fact of the matter is that all of the top level military officials over there are looking at this Syrian incident as the catalyst — as the spark.
What we’re looking at right now is the beginning of World War 3 unless we manage to stop it.
We encourage you to continue checking out Infowars and Storyleak for more updates on this and the latest news and information we find out on this developing situation.
HIGH LEVEL SOURCE CONFIRMS Secret US Nuclear Warhead Transfer to East Coast http://www.storyleak.com/exclusive-high-level-source-confirms-secret-us-nuclear-warhead-transfer-east-coast/by Anthony Gucciardi & Alex Jones 3 Sept 13,
A high level source inside the military has now confirmed to us that Dyess Air Force base is actively moving nuclear warheads to the East Coast of the United States in a secret transfer that has no paper trail. According to the high level military source, who has a strong record of continually being proven correct in deep military activity, the Dyess Air Force Commander authorized unknown parties to transfer the nuclear warheads to an unknown location that has been reported to be South Carolina, where the warheads will then be picked up and potentially utilized.
This is of particular interest not only due to the fact that the Syrian situation has escalated to the point of a very realistic hot war scenario, but due to the fact that Dyess has repeatedly denied the existence of nuclear warheads inside the base. (Below, a pilotless nuclear missile)
The brief report from the top level military source, which was written in a rush to get the information out, reads:
“Dyess is beginning to move out nuclear war heads today. I got a tap from DERMO earlier. He said it was the first time they have been even acknowledged since being put there in the 80′s. No signature was required for transfer… There was no directive. He said that Dyess Commander was on site to give authority to release. No one knew where they were going really, but the truck driver said to take them to South Carolina and another pick up will take them from there.”
The fact that this transfer was not signed for and there were no papers is key. Continue reading
It is awfully ironic that an inhuman weapon such as nuclear weapons and chemical weapons could be used to promote human rights and freedom in the world.
Nuclear Strike on Syria The Genie is Out of the Bottle http://www.veteranstoday.com/2013/08/07/nuclear-strike-on-syria/ By Jon Snow, 7 Aug 13
Note – This item was posted on the Channel 4 (UK) website at this locationhttp://blogs.channel4.com/snowblog/nuclear-strikes-syria-genie-bottle/20846 on August 05, 2013, and has since been removed. A copy can still be found at Google Cache – and has been recovered and archived below. The fight against Assad’s brutal regime has taken an unexpected turn late Thursday afternoon when a large weapons cache belonging to the so-called national protection force in Homs city, an arm of Assad’s Shabeeha, was destroyed.
The explosion was reminiscent of the attack on Qasyoon mountain, a stronghold for the Syrian army and a location said to house missiles targeting Israel.
It was first reported that the missile fueling station had blown up which seemed like a reasonable proposition especially since an ammunition depot was targeted.
But the two explosions in Homs and Qasyoon share the same property: They are both above ground air bursts according to Greg Thielmann, an expert on arms control policy whom I spoke with on Saturday at great length. I was first alerted to the connection by slow twitter chatter right after the bombing in Homs.
Needless to say I was shocked at what he told me next: “The fact of the matter is, what we are seeing in both these cases is a tactical nuclear strike, probably by cruise missiles launched from aircrafts near the borders of Syria or right off the coast in the Mediterranean.” Continue reading
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