Special report part 1: Here’s How Assad Built ISIS


assad-isisBY: ROY GUTMAN

In his first interview after winning the presidency, Donald Trump hinted that he will shift policy in the Syria conflict from one of support for the moderate opposition to collaboration with the regime of President Bashar al-Assad. “Syria is fighting ISIS, and you have to get rid of ISIS,” Trump said. As for the rebels that the U.S. has backed fitfully for the past three years, he said: “We have no idea who these people are.”

But the president-elect appears to be ill-informed about Assad’s key role in the rise of the so-called Islamic State.

This three-part series documents the Syrian dictator’s sinister contributions to this tale of terrorism and horror. First, he tried to ingratiate himself with Western leaders by portraying the national uprising against him as a terrorist-led revolt. When that failed, he released jailed Islamic extremists who’d fought against U.S. troops in Iraq, then staged phony attacks on government facilities, which he blamed on terrorists. Far from fighting ISIS, Assad looked the other way when it set up a state-within-a-state with its capital in Raqqa, and left it to the U.S. and others to counter the Islamic extremists.

ISTANBUL—After spending a month in an Aleppo prison at the start of the Syrian uprising, political activist Abdullah Hakawati thought he knew what to expect when Bashar al-Assad’s military intelligence arrested him for a second time in September 2011.

He was hanged by his hands for four days. They beat him with clubs and iron bars, and used electric prods on his genitals, he says. Then came the surprise: After a staged trial and a conviction for terrorism, he was sentenced to a lockup where his cellmates were hardcore al Qaeda veterans, newly transferred from Syria’s political prisons.

“It was the first time I saw someone from the al Qaeda movement face to face,” said Hakawati, an actor who’d played the lead role in an anti-regime play that spring and had helped organize demonstrations in Aleppo, Syria’s biggest city. “They threatened to slaughter me because I’m an atheist and I do not pray.”

After weeks in the same cell with the al Qaeda veterans, who were “practically the managers of the prison,” five of Hakawati’s colleagues joined the extremists, many later taking up arms against Assad.

Mixing civic activists with al Qaeda veterans was no accident.

The Syrian president had alleged that armed terrorists had led the national uprising in 2011, which seemed preposterous at the time. So Assad used his security apparatus to make the reality match his propaganda. Claiming to be the victim of extremism, he in fact played the principal enabling role in its rise in the region, a two-year investigation by The Daily Beast shows. The scene at Aleppo Central Prison was part of a concerted effort to radicalize and discredit the nationwide revolt.

As President-elect Donald Trump weighs closer military cooperation with the Assad regime in fighting ISIS, the story of Assad’s role in the rise of the so-called Islamic State could come home to haunt him. Critics say that any U.S. collaboration with Assad or his Russian protectors will backfire, leaving the Syrian leader in power as he continues to play his long-running double game with terrorists.
John Kerry, the outgoing secretary of state, said in November 2015 that ISIS “was created by Assad” and by former Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, both of whom released al Qaeda prisoners in their respective countries. Assad’s aim was to tell the world, “It’s me or the terrorists.”

This series charts Assad’s major role in the rise of Islamic extremism from the inside. Based on exclusive interviews with high-level defectors from the regime’s security apparatus, it sheds new light on key decisions—like sending volunteers to fight the U.S. occupation of Iraq, which helped establish the forerunner of the Islamic State, releasing more than 1,000 former al Qaeda militants from Syrian prisons in 2011, and rarely fighting the Islamic State militants.

It also reveals how:

— the regime likely staged bombings of its own security facilities in 2011 and 2012 to foster the impression that al Qaeda had an armed presence in Syria long before it did.

— Syrian intelligence received orders to stand by when al Qaeda fighters crossed from Iraq into Syria in 2012.

— Syrian intelligence has penetrated the leadership of extremist jihadist groups and at critical moments can influence their operations.
Remarkably, several high-level former Syrian security officials who spoke on the record with this reporter said that U.S. intelligence agencies never debriefed them. The ex-officials viewed this as a major lapse, not only because they were privy to, and complicit in, the inner workings of Assad’s role in organizing a terrorist insurgency against U.S. forces in Iraq, but also because they were well-placed to advise on the establishment of a new state security apparatus should Assad’s police state collapse or be overthrown.

The Obama administration apparently wasn’t interested. A former top U.S. diplomat said the CIA had little interest in Syrian defectors and debriefed them only if the diplomat insisted.

The CIA declined to comment but did not dispute the validity of the question. “I looked into this, and there is nothing we can add,” a spokeswoman said.


Assad’s relations with the jihadists traces back to the seminal role his regime played in helping foment the Iraqi insurgency following the U.S. invasion in 2003.

A trove of al Qaeda personnel records uncovered by U.S. forces in 2007 in the northern Iraqi town of Sinjar showed that more than 600 fighters from Saudi Arabia, Libya, and other Muslim countries had crossed into Iraq from Syria between August 2006 and August 2007. “It is almost inconceivable that Syrian intelligence has not tried to penetrate these networks,” a report by the West Point Combating Terrorism Center (PDF) stated in 2008.

Internal State Department cables released by WikiLeaks confirm that the U.S. had intelligence showing that almost all foreign al Qaeda volunteers entered Iraq via Syria and that Assad and his top aides were fully aware. In 2010, they acknowledged as much to visiting U.S. officials, a WikiLeaks cable showed. “In principle, we don’t attack or kill them immediately,” Gen. Ali Mamluk, now Assad’s top intelligence advisor, said of al Qaeda operatives. “Instead, we embed ourselves in them, and only at the opportune moment do we move.” Mamluk offered cooperation in arresting terrorists in exchange if the U.S. would ease economic and travel sanctions.

But that’s only the half of it. Defected Syrian intelligence officials and former volunteers said the regime encouraged Syrians to volunteer for the anti-American jihadist, and thousands did.

“Syria wanted to prolong the Iraq war and the attacks on U.S. forces, so that the Americans couldn’t come into Syria,” said Anas al-Rajab, a former Islamist from Hama province who fought in Iraq and then, on returning to Syria, served two brief terms in prisons run by the Syrian mukhabarat, or intelligence services.

Mahmud al-Naser, a defected Syrian intelligence officer interviewed for this series, said the mukhabarat estimated 20,000 people crossed into Iraq as the U.S. began its attack in March 2003, but most returned immediately after the fall of Baghdad three weeks later.

But another 5,000 crossed for reasons of religious ideology—and they “are what gave birth to the monster” that now dominates much of Iraq and Syria, said Naser, the former head of political party affairs at the Syrian intelligence station in Ra’s al Ein, in northern Syria.

Naser now works with Syrian émigré lawyers in a major city in southern Turkey collecting data on alleged regime war crimes. Following an introduction by those lawyers, Naser sat down for seven hours of questioning over three sessions this past spring.

Like other security defectors interviewed for this series, several of whom were at general officer rank, Naser said U.S. intelligence had never debriefed him.

“We in Syria intelligence opened all the doors for [the jihadists] to go to Iraq,” he said.

That view is widely held in the region.

“The Syrian government made an enormous mistake in 2003,” said Massoud Barzani, the president of the Kurdistan Regional Government in a recent interview with The Daily Beast at his military headquarters in Suheil, in the far north of Iraq’s Kurdistan region, near the Syrian and Turkish borders. “They opened the door to terrorists in order to put pressure on the American troops in Iraq so they wouldn’t even think of war (against Syria).”

The regime has “of course a very great responsibility” for what has occurred. “Out of that came al Qaeda in Iraq, then Daesh, and the extremists who have spread around Syria. That is the result today.” (Daesh is the Arabic pejorative term for ISIS.)

Volunteers joined the battle knowingly.

Many underwent training and indoctrination, overseen by the Syrian intelligence services, before their departure. One of the best-known figures in the indoctrination operation was Mahmud al-Aghasi, known as Abu al-Qaqa’a, a Muslim cleric in Aleppo, whose al Tawabbin mosque was a recruiting center for Salafists heading to Iraq.

The cleric would stage marches from his mosque to the city center and lead the chant: “We are going to slaughter the Americans,” said Bassam Barabandi, a former Syrian diplomat who now lives in Washington.

“He would give guarantees that foreign fighters would have no problems if they came,” Barabandi said. It was clear he had a top-level sponsor. “He could not function in a police state like Syria without very high-level approval,” he said.”

Barabandi also was never asked for his insights. ”Nobody ever debriefed me,” he told The Daily Beast. “I took the initiative and contacted friends at the State Department, and we had a lunch or dinner. That was it.”

In fact, Syrian intelligence had recruited imams as agents during their study of Sharia at university facilities.

“We commissioned some of the imams who work for Syrian intelligence. Abu al-Qaqa’a was only one of dozens,” said Naser.

Raed Ilawy, an Islamist recruit from Hama, was among the Syrians who traveled to the mosque. Some of the trainers, he recalled in an interview at an Istanbul café, came from Assad’s intelligence services, and some accompanied them to the Iraqi border in what the recruits called “Bashar Assad caravans.”

The Syrian government was kept informed throughout, said Awad al-Ali, a former general in Assad’s police apparatus. Abu al-Qaqa’a, who was assassinated in 2007, possibly by the mukhabarat, also provided Assad’s intelligence services with lists of names of those who’d been trained.

Syrian intelligence “kept a census” of those who left, because on their return, “everyone would be followed” by the Department of Religious Intelligence in the Management of General Intelligence, one of Assad’s numerous spying agencies, said Naser.

About one quarter never came back, either joining al Qaeda in Iraq or dying in battle, he said. Of those who returned, about 1,500 were viewed as Islamists arrested as arrested on terrorism-related charges.


Sednaya, north of Damascus, is Syria’s most notorious political prison. Diab Serriya, a civic activist who served five years in Sednaya, and was released in 2011, said the number of Islamic fundamentalists imprisoned with him rose from about 300 when he arrived in 2006 to some 900 when he was released. Almost all had seen time fighting in Iraq against the American occupation, almost all were Salafist-jihadists, or hardline violent Islamists, and most were sentenced from five to 15 years for terrorist activities or association with terror groups, he said. Serriya was interviewed in late 2014 after delivering a speech about his experiences before a Syrian cultural club in Istanbul.

Sednaya was not a site for correction and rehabilitation but functioned as an incubator for jihadism, according to former prisoners and intelligence defectors. Some former detainees called it a “five star” prison.

According to former intelligence officials and prisoners, detainees were sorted according to their ideology. Two cellblocks were reserved for the most extreme Islamists, many of whom are now in leadership positions in ISIS. Two were reserved for less extreme Islamists, many of whom are now in the al Qaeda affiliate formerly known as Jabhat al Nusra, and three for more moderate Islamists, many of whom wound up in another prominent Syrian Islamist faction known as Ahrar al Sham. The other three were occupied by moderate Islamists and “democrats” such as Serriya.

The religious fundamentalists organized as if in a caliphate, with groups pledging loyalty to emirs, just as extremist Islamist groups do today, he said.

They wrote slogans on the walls, setting out their goals upon their release, Serriya said. “Some even had the illusion that upon their release, they would go straight to Damascus and establish a caliphate there,” he said.

When the Syrian uprising began in mid-March 2011, Assad began releasing religious extremists from Sednaya.

The regime said it was a response to activists’ demands to free political prisoners. U.S. intelligence officials, who spoke on background, offer a similar explanation. But sending known al Qaeda extremists into a country seething with unrest was also a cynical ploy to use extremists to further his political ends, according to Naser.

“The reason the regime released them at the beginning of the Syrian revolution was to complete the militarization of the uprising,” said Naser, who defected in late 2012, “and to spur criminal acts so that revolution would become a criminal case and give the impression that the regime is fighting terrorists.”

Syrian intelligence formed links in prison with the extremists, allowing them closely to track their rise in the rebel movement, according to Serriya, al-Ali, and former intelligence officials. “Every extremist group is penetrated by the regime,” Serriya said.

The regime not only had penetrated the networks but often ran them. That was by design. As Gen. Ali Mamluk told U.S. officials in 2010, the regime as a practice would “embed ourselves” among Islamic extremists in order to turn on them later. Mamluk is currently Assad’s senior intelligence adviser.

Nabeel Dendal, former director of political intelligence in Latakia, the Assad family’s ancestral home, said he twice led security forces in raids on al Qaeda cells, only to learn that the cell leader he was working for was supported by the Syrian intelligence.

“They were preparing them to be leaders,” the defected colonel said, referring to the Assad regime. An example is Nadim Baloush, an al Qaeda cell leader he arrested in Latakia in 2006, and told him “don’t do anything. I am working for Assef Shawkat,” Assad’s brother-in-law who served as the deputy defense minister. Baloush was arrested after he traveled to Turkey about a year ago and is reported to have committed suicide in prison.

Dendal was introduced to this reporter by a former regime judge from Aleppo who deserted to the opposition. Interviewed in a café in Istanbul’s popular Fatih district, which is now packed with Syrian refugees, he estimated that half the commanders in ISIS are working with the regime today; other defectors from the security sector say it’s about one third. According to Naser, most of the top commanders of Daesh in Raqqa are linked with Syrian intelligence.

Certainly in Aleppo’s Central Prison, the extremists had a “very smooth” relationship with their guards, in contrast with the civil prisoners, who had no privileges at all, civil protester Abdullah Hakawati said.

There were six inmates from Sednaya, and others from other major political prisons, Tadmor (in the ancient city of Palmyra), the Palestine Branch and “291”—altogether 15 al Qaeda members in the cell at Aleppo Central Prison with 15 civic activists such as Hakawati.

The al Qaeda members had privileges, Hakawati remembers, including smartphones, access to the internet, freedom to grow beards and dress in the Afghan-style shalwar kameez, and to order carry-in meals. They held daily religious lessons and prayed for the health of al Qaeda leaders. Hakawati said that while in the prison, he heard “one complete speech by Bin Laden,” who’d been killed by U.S. forces a few months earlier.

If a civil activist ran afoul of the authorities, al Qaeda members stepped in to protect him.

“They were practically the managers of the prison,” Hakawati said. “It was a paradise for them.” And after several weeks with them, five of his colleagues joined the extremists.

Hakawati recounted the time that the prison warden, a general, sat with all the prisoners. “On that day, one of the al Qaeda prisoners, Mahmoud Manigani said to the general, ‘When I am released, on the second day, I will kill you.’” The general responded: “This is something only you can decide.”

But when a civic activist complained that the food was inadequate, the warden threatened: “Would you like me to play with your testicles?”

The relationship between the civic activists and the extremists could be hostile. Hakawati recalled that after a long philosophical discussion with Manigani about the meaning of God, the Islamist beat him up. But not every encounter was hostile. One jihadist thanked Hakawati for helping organize the popular uprising. “It’s due to your demonstrations that we are all comfortable now,” he said.

Former Sednaya prisoners took top positions in Islamist forces. For example, Abu Lukman, one of the founders of Syrian al Qaeda branch Jabhat al Nusra, is now the emir, or administrator, of Raqqa. Mahmoud al-Khalif, another Sednaya graduate, works in the security area and Haj Fadel al-Agal is responsible for social relations. One former prisoner, Abu Abdulrahman al-Hamwi, is the emir of Nusra in Hama province. Other leaders include Abu Naser Drusha, a cousin of Abu Muhammad al-Jolani, the founder and principal leader of Nusra, Abu Hussien Zeniah, now in charge of Nusra operations in Qalamoun area near Damascus, and Abu Hafs al-Kiswani, a Nusra commander in Dara’a, southern Syria.

A Sednaya “sheikh” heads the Syrian Islamic Front, an umbrella group for Islamist fighters not affiliated with al Qaeda, and others became leaders of lesser Islamist groups, including Zahran Alloush, who led the Islamist faction Jaysh al Islam until he was killed in a Russian airstrike last Christmas, and Ahmed Issa al-Sheikh, leader of another rebel group, Suqoor al Sham.

Hassan Abboud, who founded Ahrar al Sham, the largest Islamist fighting group in Syria, also served time at Sednaya and was released during the demonstrations. Abboud was killed along with most of Ahrar al Sham’s leadership in a mysterious explosion in September.

They rose rapidly to leadership positions, said al-Ali. Having spent time at Sednaya was the equivalent of a graduate degree with honors. “If someone is a ‘graduate’ of Sednaya, he is indisputably a ‘Sheikh,’” he said. “People will say ‘he paid a high price’ serving in Sednaya.”

Syria’s intelligence apparatus was the big winner. With intimate knowledge of all the ex-detainees, it had a file on every one of them and was positioned to maintain its contacts with them.

Civil activists see those releases as part of Assad’s plan to ruin the revolution.

And it worked, activist Diab Serriya said. “The regime was very successful in distorting the image of the revolution,” said Serriya. “Now the battle is portrayed as being between the secular regime and extremist Islamic groups.”



46 responses to “Special report part 1: Here’s How Assad Built ISIS”

  1. Clinton: Destroy Syria for Israel

    ‘Although the Wikileaks transcript dates the email as December 31, 2000, this is an error on their part, as the contents of the email (in particular the reference to May 2012 talks between Iran and the west over its nuclear program in Istanbul) show that the email was in fact sent on December 31, 2012.

    The email makes it clear that it has been US policy from the very beginning to violently overthrow the Syrian government—and specifically to do this because it is in Israel’s interests’.

  2. The Naked Truth: Daily Caller Botches Benghazi Smear’

    ‘The Daily Caller attempted to attack a New York Times reporter for his work covering the attack on U.S. diplomatic facilities in Benghazi, Libya, but ended up citing a fake news report.

    Conservatives have dishonestly attacked Times Cairo bureau chief David Kirkpatrick’s recent investigation into Benghazi, which debunked several right-wing myths about the attack. Amid that effort, Charles C. Johnson reported for the Caller that he had uncovered embarrassing information about the writer. Johnson reported that while a student at Princeton — 25 years ago — Kirkpatrick posed nude for Playgirl magazine.
    That isn’t true.’


    1. 5thDrawer Avatar

      Dang, eh?? Didn’t really pose naked while a student of 25-yrs. But punt out that story anyway, because ‘gossip’ will last forever, and even hinting at being naked will peg anyone as being a very ‘devilish’ person. ‘Off with his head’, and all that stuff.
      Cover him in a white cloth robe. :-)))

  3. Naive, This Naked Truth

    ‘The literary testament of ‘Nefesh’ (‘soul,’), the penname of Nechama Feinstin-Pohatchevsky, was written shortly before her death in 1934 and found among the yellowing papers in her son Asael’s bookcase.’

  4. How to volunteer to fight ISIS in Syria, in eight steps

    1. 5thDrawer Avatar

      As the Lady says:
      “We don’t want people to come here only to kill,” says Deniz Sipan, commander of the YPG’s foreign volunteer training program who adds that some Westerners are hell-bent on killing Muslims. “We have this kind of people, which is weird, because most of the Kurdish people here are Muslims,” she says. “But according to those people, everyone with any kind of relation with Islam must be killed. So it’s dangerous on us.”
      (and yah .. great cartoons ..)

  5. For those interested, how Zionist owned media works

    Why Does Everyone Hate Fusion, the Miami-Based, Disney-Backed Millennial News Network?

    1. 5thDrawer Avatar

      THAT one is FUNNY … :-))
      (… kids don’t even know WHAT they are supposed to ‘be’ these days days .. :-)))

      1. Walt Disney Company: The last Hollywood Co. that Zionists changed to own the Media Empire’

        “Even Commentary, the magazine of the American Jewish Committee (March 1998), was moved to lament: “If the old Disney tells us something inspiriting about who we were not so very long ago, the new and even more hugely lucrative Disney is just another signpost marking our long, steep cultural descent.”

  6. HebrewAlba below is trying to deflect from the facts as stated above that Assadists created IS by sending links to anti Israel propaganda. Sad and disgusting.

    1. The article is from your big Corporations.

      ‘The analysis shows that just six major regional newspaper groups own 81% of local newspapers, with the remaining 56 publishers in the UK accounting for 19%.
      The report claims this has created regional “news deserts”, where professional journalists have been drained away by cuts and closures, and local monopolies or duopolies.
      The threat to news plurality in TV broadcasting is highlighted in the first instance, inevitably, by pointing the finger Sky, which is controlled by News UK owner Rupert Murdoch.owned

      In this case Fusion


      1. Rudy1947 Avatar

        Feel threatened that your off the wall BS may go away and no more Pallywood.

        1. Fuddle Duddle… Feel threatened that your off the wall BS may go away and no more Pallywood.
          Photo is aftermath of Israeli bombing of Lebanon in 2006.
          The faked pictures

          1. The Hezbullah mostly military wing, should not have placed themselves in civilian areas. They do have a bulls-eye on them. Israel whacks them all the time. Just scored some direct hits on Hezb convoys last week. Sweet.
            It should be a learned lesson that there is no future when Hezbullah invites conflict to Lebanon, who is the real bad guy? It sucks that the majority in Lebanon have to also suffer from Hezbullah. The Party are a bunch of thugs that also like to hurt Lebanese.


          2. Cool down..what has Hezbollaaaah to do with this article?

          3. 5thDrawer Avatar

            Maybe everyone should do a ‘wikileaker’ thing, and wait for the end of the 3rd chapter?

          4. O'Matrix Avatar

            Scott Binsack……

          5. “Hezbullah… should not have placed themselves in civilian areas”
            Hezbullah should place itself in hell, where a warm bed and a hot meal already await it. 🙂

          6. The Zionist Roy Gutman ‘Badman’-Daily Beast tabloid- for the record.
            As for Settlers land thieves, best land grab is in Hell 😉


      2. Copy paste. Nice job. Next week we will go over hitting the Tab button.

        1. Adresse the subject, copy paste is information.
          Nice diverting job. Forgot.. free speech is not allowed in Israel.

    2. She is doing damage control for Syria’s favorite mass murderers ,Assad,Hezb/Iran, Russia and the various shiite minions/foreign fighters. The sad part for Hind is that naturally Palestinians don’t like the Assad/Iran’s unless they are getting paid.

      1. Your Israel and West’s beloved Sharia retard endorses West’s beloved White Helmets. Call in the Rats.

      2. Israel and West’s beloved Sharia retard endorses West’s beloved White Helmets. Call in the Rats.


        1. Hey Hind, talk about Sharia law? Most retarded form of pseudo religious legal system BS on the market, truly primitive and barbaric in most aspects. If you haven’t been paying attention and simply reading a script, you would have noticed that I am most properly anti-Islamic, and yet you openly support the sectarian terrorist Iranian mullah crew and Bloody Assad. I bet you are also a firm supporter of the Houthi in Yemen. Tow that party line.

          There are simply no “good guys” in Syria, that are suitable to run the country, most notably, bloody Assad, who actually thinks he can recover from this type of inhumanity. He has a special form of delusion and alternate reality to fabricate his version current event. The whole time he is just a puppet for a skeleton regime and self destroyed fragmented country. And crotchety mullahs will be going down with him.

          1. Racist idiot ! See you in court.

            Fake News in Overdrive: President Assad “Created ISIS”

          2. O'Matrix Avatar

            You say “See you in court.” but not which court or in which location…..

          3. Sharia Law = Talmudic Law. What’s your point?

      1. Good job on this paste job, Hebrew!

        1. Good job Barb, this is a prophetic original letter from Albert Einstein in 1948.

      2. just saw this again. Funny, but Einstein was still in contact with Zionists and did fundraising for Israel right up until his death. This was his condemnation of the Deir Yassin massacre. Even Haganah condemned it.
        Astounding how Jew haters try to show off a brilliant exemplary Zionist Jew’s temporary alienation as proof of Zionism’s fatal flaws. Find a better example. Here’s an idea: cut and paste something!

        1. This is true, the problem for Einstein as he said; he believed his people would live with the Palestinians in harmony, then he called them gangsters, looters, thieves, criminals Fascists terrorists, they massacred and razed to the ground 450 Moslem and Christians villages in 1948. Afer Deir Yassin he said “I’m against the creation of a state of Israel because one day a terrorist like Menahem Begin could become the primi minister. Begin founded the Likud, Jabotinsky’s Party.

          Likud still destroying, since 1948 it never stopped, nothing is left we are in 2016, Zionists introduced terrorisme in the Holly Land, building on stolen land created terrorism, the letter was prophetic.
          Einstein was a Humanist- anti-Nazi Fascists- no way he liked Fascist Zionists. Zionist humanist does no EXIST.

  7. This tactic, that Assad used, was used by Gamal Abdel Nasser and the Saudis to fight Communism, yet some always quick point the finger at Zionism – but ultimately it’s the corrupt leaders that unleashed this disease not the Israelis – and yes it always comes back to bite you in the ass.

    1. Talk about “corrupt leaders” not picking cherries.

      1. Blaming Israel or Zionist, is like blaming your neighbors for your dysfunctional home – being in denial. Ultimately it is up to the people that live in the house, not the neighbors, to take responsibility for their own actions and the well being of the home (requires solid leadership).

        External meddling forces (influences) always lurk around the corner, but allowing those elements to disrupt, is a sign of weakness in the political foundations that the Arab governments are hastily erected upon.

        I’m not denying these external influences, are at play, but always blaming others for your own problems says a lot about one’s ability to progress and develop.

        1. You live in the twilight zone Andre, I’m not interested. Tank you

          1. 5thDrawer Avatar

            Must send that one to the ‘Re-Max gang-guy’ who keeps bugging me to sell my home – he seems to believe he should ‘help’ me – especially since I’m ‘old, alone, need to rest from cutting grass; to be nice to myself, of course, because I could be ‘rich’ for a few depressing last years paying ‘maintenance’, while living in a 2-room condo and doing a cruise on a bug-filled ship somewhere in winter, with other aged old folks I have no desire in knowing.
            He might feel enough gulit to retire himself. 🙂

          2. What does this video have to do with Assad and Syria. Whenever a topic comes up about a middle east crisis, Israel is the first to blame – I’m not defending them, they are horrible and evil in the way they treat Palestinians and steal their land – but you and others need to pull your heads out of the sand and realize that only the Palestinians can solve their current situation. The Arab countries don’t give a shit, and never did, if you haven’t noticed by now (nor does Iran).

          3. ‘HebAlba . Andre • 3 days ago
            Talk about “corrupt leaders” not picking cherries.’

            More than half of US aid ‘to entire world’ goes to Israel and it ignores our warnings on settlements. Kerry

    2. The Unfolding of Yinon “Zionist Plan for the Middle East”: The Crisis in Iraq and the Centrality of the National Interest of Israel’ (includes Lebanon)

      “Greater Israel”: The Zionist Plan for the Middle East
      The Infamous “Oded Yinon Plan”…it includes Lebanon (As you like it)

  8. BY: ROY GUTMAN! Sorry Yalibnan you became a Zionist Tabloid.
    At least Haaretz is serious and intelligent.

  9. Assad built ISIS???


    Do “volunteers” at YaKhara have a straight supply of CIA-MI6-MOSSAD-Afghani Opium?

    Seriously you idiots, keep it up. You’re doing a wonderful job at “journalism”.

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