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That's some pretty epic bullshit there Don, sorry.  Hiitler gassing people in the camps might not be 'warfare' use, but it is definite chemical weapons use. Gassing thousands and thousands of people with pesticides and nerve agents is chemical weapons use in any sense of the word.

 

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The US State Department and other US government organs believed their own propaganda.  Remember this? The US government is filled with aging Baby Boomers who feel considerable nostalgia about the

Look, I'm a patriotic American, and this sort of video makes me happy.  You see, as a patriotic American, I have long believed that my country makes the best propaganda.  Tremendous.  Huge.  The best,

8 hours ago, Mighty_Zuk said:

Let's just forget what Spicer said, okay? When you're subject to so much stress because of so many things happening simultaneously, it's inevitable to say some things you'll regret. Just take note and move on.

What. No. He's the fucking White House press secretary, not Joe from backwoods Georgia. People like him should carefully consider what they're going to say. Not run their mouth like a retard and later apologise.

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55 minutes ago, ApplesauceBandit said:

Declassified U.S. report on the CW attack, talks about how they know the Syrian regime did it.

 

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/04/11/world/middleeast/document-Syria-Chemical-Weapons-Report-White-House.html?_r=1

US statement:

Quote

Further, the World Heath Organization stated on April 5 that its analysis of the victims of the attack in Syria showed they had been exposed to nerve agents, citing the absence of external injuries and deaths due to suffocation.

 

WHO report:

Quote

The likelihood of exposure to a chemical attack is amplified by an apparent lack of external injuries reported in cases showing a rapid onset of similar symptoms, including acute respiratory distress as the main cause of death. Some cases appear to show additional signs consistent with exposure to organophosphorus chemicals, a category of chemicals that includes nerve agents.

 

So the US went from "some cases" to "the victims", and from "organophosphorus chemicals" to "sarin". Those are quite the jumps.

 

9 hours ago, Donward said:

And again, the thing that has been the most annoying with this episode is that the Russians and Syrians are still behaving like Obama or Hillary are in the White House, treating Donald Trump like he is some sort of cuck.

 

Furthermore, I wish the two countries would get their lies straight about this incident. Because it is fucking annoying trying to swallow which lie they are peddling next.

 

It's the "terrorists" who did this. They used chlorine gas. No it was phosgene gas. No wait, it was insecticide. No, wait again, somehow they got their hands on Sarin gas after all. The gas was released when the Syrian Air Force accidentally detonated a bomb on the gas. No, the insurgents released the gas themselves. No, turns out the whole thing was fake, and those were actors pretending to die and it was a cleverly orchestrated bit of Hollywood special effects.

 

Oh yeah, and the whole thing was a False Flag operation.

 

False Flag!

 

FALSE FLAG!!!!1!!!!

 

Holy shit guys. Give us some fucking credit here.

 

Come on Don, have you read the shit that has come out of the mouths of US governmental people?

It goes from "this is a one-off strike, we won't take further action" to "Assad didn't do this" to "Trump wants to destabilise Syria" to "Trump wants to destabilise the region" to "we're looking for more military options" to "the US cannot separate Assad from ISIS". The US twists and turns just as much as Syria, just on another level and in the US' case the public eats it.

 

Like I said before, Syria almost immediately offered to accept an international inspection team, why was this denied? You can go shouting like "SYRIA HAS NOTHING TO DEMAND", but why shouldn't an inspection/investigation be from an international team? What inspection team in recent years hasn't been an international team? Syria also said it should start in Damascus, shouldn't that be absolutely perfect? Start in Damascus, drive to Shayrat, inspect that. If the US knew if came from Shayrat, wouldn't this be the easiest course of action? Of course, if you then can prove it came from the Syrian air force, you can then bomb to shit whatever you want to bomb to shit. For me this isn't about something like "The US shouldn't hamper the fight against the jihadis" but it's about the US straight up denying an international inspection and that they were the investigator, attorney, judge and the executioner. A major power doing that scares me, sugarcoat it all you want, but it fucking scares me. What if Russia had completely destroyed the Ukrainian air forces over MH17? What if we had destroyed Russian air defences over MH17? I mean, we had perfectly good (according to us) evidence to blame the Russians, and the Russians had perfectly good (according to them) to blame the Ukrainians. But none of the parties involved in that incident did that. I wonder why.

 

 

More about the Spicer remark:

Quote

 

Comparing the Nazi leader with Syria’s Bashar al-Assad, Spicer told journalists during his regular press briefing at the White House: “We didn’t use chemical weapons in world war two. You had someone as despicable as Hitler who didn’t even sink to using chemical weapons.”

 

Asked to clarify the remarks, he added: “I think when you come to sarin gas, he was not using the gas on his own people the same way that Assad is doing.”

 

A reporter in the room shouted that Jews had been targeted. Stuttering and gesticulating, Spicer stumbled on: “Thank you, I appreciate that. There was not in the – he brought them into the Holocaust centres – I understand that. But I’m saying in the way that Assad used them, where he went into towns, dropped them down into the middle of towns.

 

Makes it a little more nuanced, but it's still a dumb statement.

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1 hour ago, Bronezhilet said:

What. No. He's the fucking White House press secretary, not Joe from backwoods Georgia. People like him should carefully consider what they're going to say. Not run their mouth like a retard and later apologise.

 

Technically speaking I should be the most offended by his statement, you know, because I'm nationally Jewish and all. But I choose not to be offended by it, so surely you can find the strength to ignore it as well and see it as one man's unintentional slip of tongue.

 

49 minutes ago, Bronezhilet said:

US statement:

 

WHO report:

 

So the US went from "some cases" to "the victims", and from "organophosphorus chemicals" to "sarin". Those are quite the jumps.

 

 

Come on Don, have you read the shit that has come out of the mouths of US governmental people?

It goes from "this is a one-off strike, we won't take further action" to "Assad didn't do this" to "Trump wants to destabilise Syria" to "Trump wants to destabilise the region" to "we're looking for more military options" to "the US cannot separate Assad from ISIS". The US twists and turns just as much as Syria, just on another level and in the US' case the public eats it.

 

Like I said before, Syria almost immediately offered to accept an international inspection team, why was this denied? You can go shouting like "SYRIA HAS NOTHING TO DEMAND", but why shouldn't an inspection/investigation be from an international team? What inspection team in recent years hasn't been an international team? Syria also said it should start in Damascus, shouldn't that be absolutely perfect? Start in Damascus, drive to Shayrat, inspect that. If the US knew if came from Shayrat, wouldn't this be the easiest course of action? Of course, if you then can prove it came from the Syrian air force, you can then bomb to shit whatever you want to bomb to shit. For me this isn't about something like "The US shouldn't hamper the fight against the jihadis" but it's about the US straight up denying an international inspection and that they were the investigator, attorney, judge and the executioner. A major power doing that scares me, sugarcoat it all you want, but it fucking scares me. What if Russia had completely destroyed the Ukrainian air forces over MH17? What if we had destroyed Russian air defences over MH17? I mean, we had perfectly good (according to us) evidence to blame the Russians, and the Russians had perfectly good (according to them) to blame the Ukrainians. But none of the parties involved in that incident did that. I wonder why.

 

 

More about the Spicer remark:

Makes it a little more nuanced, but it's still a dumb statement.

 

1)"some cases" refers to highlighted data on the victims. So when they say "the victims", there's no "jump". They were referring to them from the beginning.

From a 5 second google search, I found out Sarin was a organophosphorous compound, which means that referring to it as "organophosphorous chemicals" is correct. 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sarin

 

2)We all know what the inspectors would find. And if you don't know, I'll give you a hint: Iran's nuclear facilities' inspection. Another hint: They found nothing harmful but also found completely closed off and covered sections in those facilities, from which they were prohibited.

This is Syrian turf. And partly even Russian turf. They can cover things up fairly easy I say. The supposed follow up strike on the hospital could serve as evidence for that.

 

3)There are plot holes in the Syrian/Russian/Iranian version as well. They say it was an innocent attack on an arms factory or storage facility in which chemical weapons were located (and Assad didn't know about the chem weapons, just thought there were weapons). But then, how would that create a chemical reaction necessary for the creation of Sarin gas? That would destroy the components, not mix them.

And then of course the claims that the attacks were in fact fake, which contradict the early version that a warehouse was hit. 

 

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37 minutes ago, Mighty_Zuk said:

Technically speaking I should be the most offended by his statement, you know, because I'm nationally Jewish and all. But I choose not to be offended by it, so surely you can find the strength to ignore it as well and see it as one man's unintentional slip of tongue.

You being offended or not has nothing to do with me thinking it's a retarded statement that shouldn't have been said. This isn't the first time Spicer has said dumb shit. He said that Trump's goal is to destroy healthcare and he has said that Trump's goal is to destabilise Syria/the region twice now. A press secretary shouldn't have so many "slips of the tongue", if he can't stop saying stupid shit (and having to apologise for it), maybe he shouldn't be press secretary? 

 

37 minutes ago, Mighty_Zuk said:

1)"some cases" refers to highlighted data on the victims. So when they say "the victims", there's no "jump". They were referring to them from the beginning.

From a 5 second google search, I found out Sarin was a organophosphorous compound, which means that referring to it as "organophosphorous chemicals" is correct. 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sarin

 

2)We all know what the inspectors would find. And if you don't know, I'll give you a hint: Iran's nuclear facilities' inspection. Another hint: They found nothing harmful but also found completely closed off and covered sections in those facilities, from which they were prohibited.

This is Syrian turf. And partly even Russian turf. They can cover things up fairly easy I say. The supposed follow up strike on the hospital could serve as evidence for that.

 

3)There are plot holes in the Syrian/Russian/Iranian version as well. They say it was an innocent attack on an arms factory or storage facility in which chemical weapons were located (and Assad didn't know about the chem weapons, just thought there were weapons). But then, how would that create a chemical reaction necessary for the creation of Sarin gas? That would destroy the components, not mix them.

And then of course the claims that the attacks were in fact fake, which contradict the early version that a warehouse was hit. 

 

1. Except the US didn't refer to it as organophosphorus chemcicals, they said nerve gas. Some organophosphates are nerve gasses, not all organophosphates are nerve gasses. So you can't simply make the jump from organophosphates to nerve gasses, but the US did do just that. WHO said "the symptoms are consistent with exposure to organophosphates (which include nerve gasses)". WHO didn't say "the symptoms are consistent with nerve gasses (which are organophosphates)". The US completely dropped the organophosphates part and went straight to nerve gasses. 

If WHO had said "organophosphorus chemicals, a category of chemicals that includes phosmet" (which is a true statement) would the US have said "World Heath Organization stated [...] the victims of the attack in Syria showed they had been exposed to phosmet" (which could be a true statement)? 

 

2. They say they have proof, an inspection can confirm that proof. It's one thing to go look for proof, it's another thing to confirm the proof you already have. You give Iran as an example, I can give MH17 as an example. I think the only country that didn't (fully) accept the JIT's findings is Russia. For as far as I know every other country has accepted JIT's findings as correct.

Syria's only demands were: International team and start in Damascus. There was nothing like "Only non-NATO countries allowed, who have to start in Damascus, cannot go anywhere without military protection, and are not allowed to visit military installations". Nothing in the two Syrian demands prevented an inspection team from visiting all military installations, airbases or factories they suspect of making and/or storing sarin.

 

3. I'm not saying that the Russian/Iranian/Syrian sides aren't sketchy.

 

Also, as soon as the two compounds come into contact, it would make sarin. Sure, properly mixing everything would make sure that the binaries are fully converted to sarin, but as soon as the binaries come into contact with each other, sarin is formed.

 

It also has to be noted that Putin didn't say it was a false flag, he said it was a provocation. The term "false flag" was a mistranslation:

This was Putin's statement:

Quote

Теперь, возможны ли новый удары или не возможны? Вот у нас есть информация от различных источников, что подобные провокации, а я по-другому это назвать не могу, готовятся и в других районах Сирии...

Which, according to a Redditor translates to:

Quote

Now, about whether new strikes are possible or not. We have info, from multiple sources, that similar provocations, I cant call it in any other manner, are being prepared in other regions of Syria...

Now, I can't confirm the accuracy of that translation, but I do know that "провокации" transliterates to "provokatsii".

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   Russia will be isolated in the international arena if it does not agree to conclude a deal with the US on Syria. Such a statement was made by the representative of the White House, Sean Spicer. His words are reported by RIA Novosti.

Well, now it is obvious why everything in last days was done.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Bronezhilet said:

You being offended or not has nothing to do with me thinking it's a retarded statement that shouldn't have been said. This isn't the first time Spicer has said dumb shit. He said that Trump's goal is to destroy healthcare and he has said that Trump's goal is to destabilise Syria/the region twice now. A press secretary shouldn't have so many "slips of the tongue", if he can't stop saying stupid shit (and having to apologise for it), maybe he shouldn't be press secretary? 

 

1. Except the US didn't refer to it as organophosphorus chemcicals, they said nerve gas. Some organophosphates are nerve gasses, not all organophosphates are nerve gasses. So you can't simply make the jump from organophosphates to nerve gasses, but the US did do just that. WHO said "the symptoms are consistent with exposure to organophosphates (which include nerve gasses)". WHO didn't say "the symptoms are consistent with nerve gasses (which are organophosphates)". The US completely dropped the organophosphates part and went straight to nerve gasses. 

If WHO had said "organophosphorus chemicals, a category of chemicals that includes phosmet" (which is a true statement) would the US have said "World Heath Organization stated [...] the victims of the attack in Syria showed they had been exposed to phosmet" (which could be a true statement)? 

 

2. They say they have proof, an inspection can confirm that proof. It's one thing to go look for proof, it's another thing to confirm the proof you already have. You give Iran as an example, I can give MH17 as an example. I think the only country that didn't (fully) accept the JIT's findings is Russia. For as far as I know every other country has accepted JIT's findings as correct.

Syria's only demands were: International team and start in Damascus. There was nothing like "Only non-NATO countries allowed, who have to start in Damascus, cannot go anywhere without military protection, and are not allowed to visit military installations". Nothing in the two Syrian demands prevented an inspection team from visiting all military installations, airbases or factories they suspect of making and/or storing sarin.

 

3. I'm not saying that the Russian/Iranian/Syrian sides aren't sketchy.

 

Also, as soon as the two compounds come into contact, it would make sarin. Sure, properly mixing everything would make sure that the binaries are fully converted to sarin, but as soon as the binaries come into contact with each other, sarin is formed.

 

It also has to be noted that Putin didn't say it was a false flag, he said it was a provocation. The term "false flag" was a mistranslation:

This was Putin's statement:

Which, according to a Redditor translates to:

Now, I can't confirm the accuracy of that translation, but I do know that "провокации" transliterates to "provokatsii".

 

There's our misunderstanding. I'm talking about this very specific remark. Not about his history of similar remarks. Simply because I don't follow US politics much other than occasionally reading the headlines and having a chuckle.

What I'm saying is you shouldn't give it too much weight. It's insignificant.

 

 

1)I believe you're clinging to unnecessary small details here. The intent was clear. 

 

2)It's only going to keep them in the loop of "I'm right. - No I'm right. No I'm right.". The information has been validated by numerous intelligence agencies, with their own means to research it in a short time without these prolonged unnecessary inspections. There are plenty of very good ways to gather information, and an 'on the ground' inspection may not be necessary at all.

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/04/11/world/middleeast/document-Syria-Chemical-Weapons-Report-White-House.html?_r=1

There's already a declassified report on the incident. Obviously several parts are not included to prevent leakage of classified data on intelligence gathering capabilities. 

 

This is just a delegitimization attempt by Syria (and Russia) of the missile strike, because they know the US has already got the necessary info and won't be part of an investigation it deems redundant. This is a very common method in Russian media to be fair. They're still blaming the US for everything done in Syria because they say they offered the US to participate in their coalition, which the US later declined. Of course failed to explain that the Russian coalition included groups that are highly hostile to the US, and the US was already part of a much larger coalition. Every actor and their tactics. This just happens to be Russia's primary card.

 

 

3)In a Bellingcat's post (note, I am not an expert in chemistry, nor am I even interested in the subject), it was said that either one of the components, or a certain chemical required to mix them (can't remember which) is highly flammable and would disintegrate before the Sarin compound can be created. I'll try to find it.

 

 

Last but not least, the translation is fairly accurate (other than the first part. It was phrased incorrectly), but what do you think he means by "provocations"? Because as far as I can see, the two mean the same thing. US sets up a plan to provoke Assad into using a chemical weapon (unknowingly it is a US operation), Assad uses chem weapons and the US strikes again. EZ and PZ. If that's Russia's theory, it's damn well a false flag accusation, because then none would have known it was the US who planned it, and everyone would think it was purely Assad's fault. 

 

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46 minutes ago, Mighty_Zuk said:

 

There's our misunderstanding. I'm talking about this very specific remark. Not about his history of similar remarks. Simply because I don't follow US politics much other than occasionally reading the headlines and having a chuckle.

What I'm saying is you shouldn't give it too much weight. It's insignificant.

I'm not giving it too much weight? I literally only posted it here because it's a retarded comment, I think I've posted Spicer's retarded comments here before.

 

46 minutes ago, Mighty_Zuk said:

1)I believe you're clinging to unnecessary small details here. The intent was clear. 

I'm seeing a jump to justify a military strike. And if they're doing it here, who's to say they won't do it on other issues too?

 

2. Yes. It looks more like a press release than an intelligence report though, but hey. That's the report we're talking about right now. That's where this organophosphates vs nerve gas discussion comes from.

Citing intelligence agencies as a source are usually a bit sketchy imo. Personally I don't trust the "Trust us, our intelligence agency said so" arguments at all. We've seen what can happen with that in Iraq, although that might be an extreme case.

 

3. Depends on what chemicals you use. Yes, one is isopropyl alcohol (MSDS here), which is not flammable in presence of shocks, but can explode due to mechanical impacts or open flames.

But using isopropyl alcohol isn't the only way of making sarin. Another way is to use methylphosphonic dichloride instead of isopropyl alcohol, but that has a whole range of other problems, including it being super toxic. But it's not highly flammable or explosive. So yes, according to Wiki it's possible to create sarin without explosive/highly flammable materials.

 

Quote

Last but not least, the translation is fairly accurate (other than the first part. It was phrased incorrectly), but what do you think he means by "provocations"? Because as far as I can see, the two mean the same thing. US sets up a plan to provoke Assad into using a chemical weapon (unknowingly it is a US operation), Assad uses chem weapons and the US strikes again. EZ and PZ. If that's Russia's theory, it's damn well a false flag accusation, because then none would have known it was the US who planned it, and everyone would think it was purely Assad's fault. 

I guess that a provocation would be something like jihadis storing chlorine in a house, have it look like an HQ or important place and wait until it's bombed: "We've been bombed with chemical weapons!!!!!111!1". While a false-flag would be something like deliberately blowing up the house yourself and claiming you were being bombed with chemical weapons.

 

 

But anyway, I have literally no idea what to think about this whole incident. Sometimes I'm leaning to one side, then something gets posted and I start leaning to the other side. I've been trying to give other perspectives but it seems that with a lot of people it's "You're either with me or you're a conspiracy nut/brainwashed by the media". I've been IP-banned on a forum that's totally unrelated to the SCW or even weapons because I told a moderator that maybe the proof wasn't as definitive as he claimed. Obviously that meant I support a mass murdering dictator and he perma'd me. :D

 

Anyway, I think we'll have to wait on further information for this discussion to get anywhere. If you don't mind I'll drop it here since I think we can keep discussing endlessly and I wasn't planning on doing that.:)

 

7 minutes ago, LoooSeR said:

Yeah, interesting times.

 

 

That was the second time he said that. I mean come on Spicer.

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Greg Cochran had a magnificent article on Syria in 2013 that is just as applicable now as it was then.

 

Quote

There is a better way. Sure, the U.S. want to deter use of chemical weapons—but we also want to prevent a jihadist Syria and/or Alawite genocide. Air strikes against Assad fulfill the first requirement, but interfere with the second. In order to achieve our goals, we have to attack both sides in the conflict. We may not be dead certain about who used that nerve gas, but if we attack both regime and rebels, we’re bound to hurt the responsible party. Balanced strikes won’t hand the advantage to the local al-Qaeda franchise. With any luck, bombing both sides will so confuse and alienate everybody that we won’t be able to intervene later even if we want to.

 

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7 minutes ago, Collimatrix said:

Greg Cochran had a magnificent article on Syria in 2013 that is just as applicable now as it was then.

 

 

Isn't the modern mode of civil war one where both sides get propped up by various powers so that nobody gets a decisive upper hand and the host country is comprehensively ruined in ways that neither side could achieve on its own?

 

If so, isn't one country propping up AND bombing both sides simply the best way to cut out the middleman?

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11 minutes ago, Toxn said:

Isn't the modern mode of civil war one where both sides get propped up by various powers so that nobody gets a decisive upper hand and the host country is comprehensively ruined in ways that neither side could achieve on its own?

 

If so, isn't one country propping up AND bombing both sides simply the best way to cut out the middleman?

 

LoooSeR posted estimates from Russian economists on how long it would take the Syrian economy to recover to its pre-war level.  That was about a year ago, and they were estimating two decades.  Obviously, the situation has not improved since then.  @Donward's comparisons to the Thirty Years War are apt.  This is a massively confusing proxy war that has vastly exceeded the original scope of the conflict and dragged in much larger foreign actors.  It will leave the country devastated for decades.

 

At this point, given the reports of CIA backed and DOD backed militias fighting each other, and US-backed Kurdish forces coming to blows with militias armed with US-supplied weapons, let alone Seymour Hersh's allegations that senior Pentagon officials were passing intelligence to Israel and Russia to undermine the Obama Administration's policy, the US basically has been fighting itself in Syria by proxy for the past five years.

 

It's a hell of a thing for a country to have a foreign policy that was written by Azathoth.  It's even worse when that country has the world's largest economy and the best weapons.  Can you imagine what Cardinal Richelieu would have done if he had TOWs, nuclear weapons and tertiary syphilis?  Wonder no more!

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         The victory of the party "An-Nahda" in Tunisia, in terms of Hezbollah was an opportunity for Tunisia to find their own political identity and refuse Westernization. In the same way, Hezbollah welcomed the success of "Muslim Brotherhood" in Egypt, but later abandoned it because of the Syrian issue.  With regard to the events in Libya, "Hezbollah" has supported the overthrow of Gaddafi, but condemned Western intervention. It is worth mentioning that "Hezbollah" has long accused Gaddafi in the disappearance and alleged murder in 1978 of Musa al-Sadr, an important figure of the "Shiite revival" in Lebanon.
       
         Arab Spring and Syria
         "Hezbollah" approach to the assessment of events in the neighboring Syrian is radically different from the one described above, but based on the same criteria. Syria - an essential element of the "resistance front" (al-Jabhat Mumanaa) Iran-Syria-"Hezbollah", despite the fact that on the Syrian-Israeli border for a long time remained calm. 
         The armed fight against Israel until the complete liberation of Lebanese territory (including the Shebaa farms) and aid to the Palestinians in the struggle against the invaders were proclaimed as key objective of "Hezbollah". Therefore, anti-Israeli views are put at the center of patriotic party rhetoric. In this regard, "Hezbollah" is positioning itself not as a Shia party in the multi-confessional Lebanon, but as a nationwide movement. In fact, Hezbollah in Lebanon has formed a complete culture of resistance, supported by competent propaganda efforts: periodic celebrations in memory of the "fallen martyrs", publishing work, aimed at a better understanding of history, folk art contests, social program, etc. It resonates not only in the Shia community, but also attracts other communities of the country.
         The intervention in the armed conflict in Syria, on the one hand, distract "Hezbollah" from its main purpose - the protection of southern Lebanon, and the other side serves this purpose, as a possible regime change in Syria would weaken the party. Syria provides the main transit route for arms from Iran, "Hezbollah".
       

       
         However, this is not the main reason for the decision of "Hezbollah" to take part in the Syrian war. With the deepening of the conflict and the emergence of a growing number of foreign jihadists in Syria, it became apparent that the country was transformed into an arena for regional confrontation. Groups of Islamic radicals, and foregin-controlled FSA/"Moderate" opposition, have threatened the established order of things. Moreover, for "Hezbollah" is vital to prevent their penetration into Lebanese territory. Nasrallah, in one of his speeches, said: "Some insist that Lebanon's problem is that "Hezbollah" went to Syria. I would argue that the problem of Lebanon is that [we] were late.
      <...> If takfiri-terrorists prevail in Syria, we will all be destroyed".    It should be emphasized that "Takfiri" that Nasrallah and other Hezbollah-connected medias mentions, wrongly interpreted by many observers and journalists as the Sunni Islamism. "Hezbollah" maintains relationships with a number of Sunni Islamist groups. Summarizing the Syrian radical groups by "takfiri" term (no "murtads", comrades!), "Hezbollah" thus draws attention to the threat posed by these groups to religious minorities (including Shiites). Support for Syria by "Hezbollah" can not be considered only in the interfaith dimension. Mukowama actions and Hezbollah involvement in any way is not a support of the Alawite community, as many brain-dead journalists and sell-out medias tries to show it.  
         The factor of the need to protect Shiite shrines are used to mobilize the Lebanese community (and by some degree Iraqi shias as well), but, in general the party avoids movement to inter-confessional conflict, especially in Lebanon. The main motive of "Hezbollah" is not religious, but political. It is vitally important priority remains the preservation of the "axis of resistance" and the current balance of forces in the region. Therefore, the party comes to the Syrian events otherwise than to the "Arab Spring" as a whole: not as a confrontation between the people and the yet another tyrant regime, but as the United States  Israel and their allies attempts to change the regime in Syria. Following the logic of "Hezbollah", problems could be solved with the help of internal reforms Syria problem, while the intervention of Western countries, pressing their interests, must be prevented. In this context, "Hezbollah" has repeatedly stressed the readiness of Assad to reform and dialogue with the opposition.
         For a long period of "Hezbollah" refused to acknowledge their involvement in the conflict while expressing support for the Assad and Syrian government  with words only (or nearly words only). 
         In 2011, Nasrallah defined the party's position in relation to the events in Syria as:
      priority is stability and security; call for the Syrian people to choose the path of dialogue, rather than confrontation with the government, and to allow him to carry out the necessary reforms; non-interference in the Lebanese internal affairs of Syria; denial of sanctions promoted by the West and imposed on Lebanon.    Leaders of "Hezbollah" has repeatedly stressed their belief that the conflict will became long war, and hoped to avoid direct participation.    INTERVENTION IN CONFLICT will be covered in 5th posts in this thread.  
       
         2. "Military Wing" of Hezbollah [WIP]
       

       
         There is no military unit in Hezbollah political party structure per say, the armed organisation that is usually refered as Hezbollah is a separate structure called Lebanese/Islamic Resistance or Al-Mouqowama/Al-Mukowama/Al-Muqawama, created because of southern Lebanon occupation by Israel. Al-Mukowama continue to grow and improve and currently it is one of most combat effective forces (relative to their size) in ME.
         Al-Mukowama is basically smaller and poorer version of IDF and In fact in 2000s most of Al-Mukowama equipment was Israeli-made. Recruitment is conscript-based, with big number of active reservists (periodically going to training facilities). Officers are usually somebody with plenty of combat experience, some of which gone trough training in Iran (including specialists like ATGM gunners and etc.).
         From 2006 Al-Muqawama was working on their Armor branch of forces, which they revealed during later stage of Syrian war. Resistance also have pretty seroius insititute of military advisors, number of which were working in Iraq with shia paramilitaries, were spotted multiple times in different parts of Syria and rumors say that they are involved in Yemen conflict, although i have no photo or video evidence to confirm such claims.
         Overall numbers are unknown, but counting reservists it may reach 40k. Primarly Al-Muqawama forces are light infantry, which is well equipped by ME arab countries standarts. Each member usually have 2 sets of equipment with wood/forest/green and desert camos (usually locally produced), protection (bodyarmor and helmets), ammocarriers (plenty of old Israel gear copies) and so on. Squads have internal organisation similar to army units - grenadiers/infantrymens/sharpshooter with DMR/MG gunner, medic and so on. Tankers, Marksmans, RPG gunners - all have basic infantry training as well, they can be seen carrying some version of AK as secondary weapon. Resistance also have dedicated AT units, reconnaissance, AA, artillery. As i already said - this is pocket version of actual army without Navy and air forces.
         Currently Al-Muqawama have bases not only in Lebanon, but in Syria as well (Qusayr/Al-Quseir for example).
       

       
         3. Why it is allowed to exist in parallel to LAF [WIP]
         The simple question why inside of one country effectively 2 armies are allowed to exist can be answered in this 2 ways - Lebanon is not 1 country, it is more of a collection of communities that share borders, so it can have more than 1 armed groups that exist officially (How about Lebanese communists armed wing? Yes, they do exist)... or those 2 armies are doing what other army can't and second answer is something that i feel is closer to reality. 
         Because of sophisticated interal policy of Lebanon state, LAF to start to act needs approval from several interested groups (which plenty of times have conficting views), which lead to LAF being slow to respond or even incapable to do something that situation may require. And this is where Resistance comes into play - it can be used to do the job that official army should have been doing, but can't because it may start serious tensions in Lebanon. Primary example - Syria, through Syria-Lebanon border plenty of terrorists groups are trying to get into country and LAF is doing almost nothing to prevent it, which led to Al-Muqawama cleaning border and fight in areas in Syria, close to Lebanon (Arsal, Beeka, 1st and 2nd Qalamoun, battle for Zabadani being best examples).
         It appears that Lebanon intelligence service - the G2 - is closelly connected to Al-Muqowama. Abbas Ibragim, the head of G2, was once reported by Al-Manar as coordinator of Army and Al-Muqowama actions in recent years. On 12 December of 2015 his nephew (Mohammed Hussein Ibrahim) was KIA in Syria in SW part of Aleppo province, which also shows some connections between him and Al-Mukowama. Another interesting example of possible connection between LAF and Resistance is Saudi Arabia canceling military aid for LAF about a year ago, which Saudi officials explained as punishment of LAF for support of Al-Mukowama.
        Also:



       

      Lebanese President Michel Aoun with Hezbollah MP Mohammad Raad surrounded by Al-Muqowama fighters at a Hezbollah site in South Lebanon.
       
       
         4. Iran - Al-Muqawama connection [WIP]
         As i already noted, some Resistance personal gone trough training in Iran, for example - several Kornet ATGM teams before 2006 Lebanon war. It appears that in recent years Resistance advisors work with some of shia units that also have Iranian support, primarly in Iraq. There is not much information on this, but small pieces are getting to public. There was an event several years back when Iranian general was KIA during Israely strikes on Al-Mukowama base at Lebanon-Israel border. Another point - recently shown Al-Muqawama AT teams vehicles are armed with double Kornet launchers, which were spotted in Iran, AFAIK.
         Most blatant example of Iran-Hezbollah connections is this recently appeared photo of now dead Al-Muqawama officer Syed Aqeel Fahas with IRGC General Qasem Soleimani.
       

       
    • By LoooSeR
      Hello, my friends and Kharkovites, take a sit and be ready for your brains to start to work - we are going to tell you a terrible secret of how to tell apart Soviet tanks that actually works like GLORIOUS T-80 and The Mighty T-72 from Kharkovites attempt to make a tank - the T-64. Many of capitalists Westerners have hard time understanding what tank is in front of them, even when they know smart words like "Kontakt-5" ERA. Ignoramus westerners!
       
       
         Because you are all were raised in several hundreds years old capitalism system all of you are blind consumer dummies, that need big noisy labels and shiny colorful things to be attached to product X to be sold to your ignorant heads and wallets, thats why we will need to start with basics. BASICS, DA? First - how to identify to which tank "family" particular MBT belongs to - to T-64 tree, or T-72 line, or Superior T-80 development project, vehicles that don't have big APPLE logo on them for you to understand what is in front of you. And how you can do it in your home without access to your local commie tank nerd? 
       
       
         Easy! Use this Putin approved guide "How to tell appart different families of Soviet and Russian tanks from each other using simple and easy to spot external features in 4 steps: a guide for ignorant western journalists and chairborn generals to not suck in their in-depth discussions on the Internet".
       
       
       
      Chapter 1: Where to look, what to see.
       
      T-64 - The Ugly Kharkovite tank that doesn't work 
       
         We will begin with T-64, a Kharkovite attempt to make a tank, which was so successful that Ural started to work on their replacement for T-64 known as T-72. Forget about different models of T-64, let's see what is similar between all of them.
       
       
       

       
       
         
       
       
      T-72 - the Mighty weapon of Workers and Peasants to smash westerners
       
         Unlike tank look-alike, made by Kharkovites mad mans, T-72 is true combat tank to fight with forces of evil like radical moderate barbarians and westerners. Thats why we need to learn how identify it from T-64 and you should remember it's frightening lines!
       

       
       
       
      The GLORIOUS T-80 - a Weapon to Destroy and Conquer bourgeois countries and shatter westerners army
       
         And now we are looking at the Pride of Party and Soviet army, a true tank to spearhead attacks on decadent westerners, a tank that will destroy countries by sucking their military budgets and dispersing their armies in vortex of air, left from high-speed charge by the GLORIOUS T-80!

      The T-80 shooting down jets by hitting them behind the horizont 
          
    • By LoooSeR
      T-14 ARMATA 
      (edited)
              This thread is about glorious russian MBT T-14, known as "Armada", "T-95", "black eagle", "T-99" and other stupid Western names given to Object 148 (T-14 in some recent documents). Here is number of images connected to that vehicle.
       

      Official model of unknown "artillery vehicle". Yeah, Putin, we know that this is T-14. Note Gatling gun on turret right side.
       
      Artist impression of T-14 based on known model, by Fyodor Podporin. 
       

      T-14 will use Relikt ERA, which is considerable improvement over Kontakt-5 in resisting to tandem HEAT warheads and EFPs.

       
      Side skirts would be thicker on a real vehicle, i think. Relikt have AFAIK bigger size than Kontakt-5 ERA build-in blocks.

       
       
       
       
       
      Whole album with renders: 
      http://imgur.com/a/8Tn9b
       
      Video of same render from same artist:

       
       
            People expect that tank would have turret weapon system like what you see on the BMP-3 "Bakhcha-U" turret - a lot of weapons in one turret for one gunner to work with. T-14 is rumored to be equipped with 30 (or even 57) mm autocannon, 4-6 barrel gatling type MG/HMG, new 125 (2A82) or even 152 mm (2A83) smoothbore cannons. Turret is unmanned, crew of 3 would be located in frontal part of hull, behind very serious frontal armor inside of compartment, well protected from all directions. Cannon would be loaded by new autoloading device. I hope that Burevestnik is working on them, those guys managed to make 100 mm Naval gun with RoF of 300 shots per minute.
       
            I really like how turret looks, but i don't understand why there is such a big turret "busket" for unmanned turret with all ammo placed inside of hull in special armored housing. Also, i don't see gunner sight and proposed FSC radar on 3D model (i assume that panoramic sight is for commander). Laser sensors on 3D model are from T-90A variant of "Shtora".
       
            Some officials mentioned works on new active protection system, that consist of powerfull radar station, that can work on "long ranges" and engage incoming projectiles (missiles) with that gatling MG. Will this system survive development stage and be presented on serial tanks is unknown. Although turret for T-15 Armata-based IFV already was shown with new APS "Afganit".
       
            If you pay attention you may see that artist used T-80 rollers for Armata chassis, and this is not a mistake - according to some sources Armata heavy chassis will use T-80 or T-80-like rollers to save weight. And looking at rear part of that tank you may notice a engine deck from gas-turbine equipped version of the T-80, which can be mistake becuase MoD want Armata with new ~1500 HP diesel engine. 
    • By Darjeeling
      Greetings, I have been studying in the battle of Afrin since it started. Yet I still lack some information that can clearly analyse the opposite plan, war progress and order of battle of both side (Turkey army clear but YPG isn’t).
       
      I am spectacular interested in the process of the battle as it revealed the true strength of the 2nd largest NATO army. Also, the performance of YPG/YPJ militant against the regular modern army is meaningful to modern warfare study too.
       
      Hence, any kind man can help me on this field or even just give out a reading list?

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