Divided PLO unable to manage Yarmouk crisis


The invasion by ISIS of the Palestinian settlement of Yarmouk, in the southern suburbs of Damascus, has exposed serious divisions within the Palestinian leadership. An apparent agreement to confront the new crisis, with the Syrian Government, was rapidly disowned by the PLO leadership in Ramallah.

In the absence of a united Palestinian response it is highly likely that the Syrian Army, with allied Palestinian factions, will impose a ‘security solution’ to the area. This may mean near complete evacuation of the area and heavy bombardment. Only about 18,000 of the pre-crisis population of 160,000 actually remain inside Yarmouk.

PLO Executive Committee member Ahmed Majdalani on 9 April announced a joint Syrian and PLO response to the ‘obscurantist terrorists’ who had seized the camp. He said the Syrian leadership had been dealing with Yarmouk ‘with a high level of sensitivity’ given its special status and as it symbolically stands as the capital of Palestinian Diaspora’. Because of that sensitivity, there had been no ‘security solution’ so far. However all attempts at a ‘political solution’ had been aborted by the terrorist groups.

Within hours the PLO in Ramallah effectively washed its hands of the matter, saying that it refused to ‘drag our people and their camps into the hellish conflict that is taking place in Syria’.  Yet some sectarian Palestinian groups bear great responsibility for the Yarmouk crisis.  They were the ones who invited Jabhat al Nusra snipers into Yarmouk, leading to Syrian Army security clamp-downs on the area.

The recapture of Palmyra


Why is David Cameron so silent on the recapture of Palmyra from the clutches of Isis?

In the end, it was the Syrian army - and its Hizballah chums from Lebanon, and the Iranians, and the Russians - who drove the Isis murderers out of Palmyra

The biggest military defeat that Isis has suffered in more than two years. The recapture of Palmyra, the Roman city of the Empress Zenobia. And we are silent. Yes, folks, the bad guys won, didn't they? Otherwise, we would all be celebrating, wouldn't we?

Less than a week after the lost souls of the 'Islamic Caliphate' destroyed the lives of more than 30 innocent human beings in Brussels, we should - should we not? - have been clapping our hands at the most crushing military reverse in the history of Isis. But no. As the black masters of execution fled Palmyra this weekend, Messers Obama and Cameron were as silent as the grave to which Isis have dispatched so many of their victims. He who lowered our national flag in honour of the head-chopping king of Arabia (I'm talking about Dave, of course) said not a word.

Putin's third term in the office: What has the president accomplished?


Four years ago, Vladimir Putin received the support from 63.6 percent of electors (more than 45.6 million people) and took office as President of Russia.

Presently, a presidential term in Russia counts six years. According to Leonid Polyakov, a member of the Institute of the Socio-Economic and Political Research, increasing the presidential term in Russia from four to six year was quite appropriate, as it enabled president to implement a long-term program of the country's development and respond to external challenges. In addition, holding the presidential and parliamentary elections in Russia separately relieved the country from costly political predicaments, the expert believes, according to the Pravda.

According to Polyakov, the reform of the country's political system has resulted in the appearance of more than 70 parties (officially registered ones) that represent all groups and layers of the Russian nation.

US-led war on Syria must be stopped!

The war on Syria is a covert CIA-managed war the USA and its allies have initiated to overthrow the Syrian government. The Syrian adventure was to be a relatively brief regime change exercise, camouflaged by the social unrest of the Arab Spring and a step in re-ordering the Middle East in the interest of the US and its allies.

This accorded with the US global strategic objective of remaining the world’s ‘first, last and only’ truly global empire, despite a declining economic base relative to rest of the world.

Robert Fisk: Saudi Arabia's executions were worthy of Isis

The executions were certainly an unprecedented Saudi way of welcoming in the New Year – if not quite as publicly spectacular as the firework display in Dubai which went ahead alongside the burning of one of the emirate’s finest hotels.

Saudi Arabia’s binge of head-choppings – 47 in all, including the learned Shia cleric Sheikh Nimr Baqr al-Nimr, followed by a Koranic justification for the executions – was worthy of Isis. Perhaps that was the point. For this extraordinary bloodbath in the land of the Sunni Muslim al-Saud monarchy – clearly intended to infuriate the Iranians and the entire Shia world – re-sectarianised a religious conflict which Isis has itself done so much to promote.

Crisis of Confidence between Berlin and Ankara Indicates Fragility of US-Led Anti-ISIL Coalition

BERLIN, (ST)- The German “Der Spiegel” newspaper has reported that Berlin would supply Turkey with only limited intelligence information about the positions of ISIL terrorists in Syria, because the German administration has doubts about Erdogan’s government’s real stance towards this terrorist organization.

This lack of confidence indicates how fragile the alleged US-led coalition against ISIL is and uncovers that all the participants in this coalition want to achieve their interests under the pretext of fighting terrorism.

What Prevents France From Fully Embracing Russia's Anti-ISIL Plan?

Although both Russia and France agreed to join forces in the fight against ISIL, the unwillingness of the French government to work with the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad remains a major stumbling block, according to Sputnik.

After their meeting in Moscow, Russian President Vladimir Putin and French President Francois Hollande agreed to form a broad international coalition to fight Islamic extremism in the Middle East. The two countries would from now on share intelligence data on terrorist groups in Syria and Iraq.