Battle for Idlib, Armageddon coming

By Christopher R Rice

“I think it’s a very sad situation in Idlib, the province, what’s going on there,” Trump told reporters in the Oval office on Wednesday as he met the emir of Kuwait. “If it’s a slaughter, the world is going to get very, very angry. And the United States is going to get very angry, too.”

Russian and Syrian warplanes resumed airstrikes against insurgents in the densely populated enclave.

The bombardment began just hours after Trump warned on Twitter that Assad “must not recklessly attack Idlib Province”.

“Let us be clear, it remains our firm stance that if President Bashar al-Assad chooses to again use chemical weapons, the United States and its Allies will respond swiftly and appropriately,” the White House said in a statement on Tuesday.

Trump on Wednesday also denied that he wanted to assassinate Assad – one of the many shocking claims made in a new book by the acclaimed Washington Post journalist Bob Woodward.

“That was never even contemplated,” Trump said.

Trump Escalates Syrian Proxy War: At the start of the Trump presidency, it looked like the U.S. covert “regime change” war in Syria might be ending, but it has returned, zombie-like, in a slightly different form.

The parallel measures by the U.S. and Russia signify a race between the two major powers to capture as much territory as possible from the Islamic State before the other side is able to do so.

Under the guise of “defeating ISIS,” both powers are essentially carving out their own spheres of influence throughout the country, dividing it between U.S.- and Russian-backed regions, leading to an inevitable showdown between the two sides over the fate of the country and its territorial integrity.

Today in Idlib, where the FSA is being supported by the CIA, al-Qaeda and its coalition completely dominate the rebel forces. Rebels routinely pass at least half of their U.S.-supplied weapons to Nusra while the U.S.-approved “moderates” only operate under license from al-Qaeda.

It is important to realize the true history of this failed CIA program and the terrorism it has wrought on Syria. It’s also important to understand how the fight against ISIS is currently being utilized to potentially fracture and partition Syria under the guise of eliminating the threat of terrorism.

Syria says it’s been warned that Jabhat Al-Nusra terrorists brought in chlorine containers to a local village, where they aimed to work with the White Helmets to stage “a provocation.”

A chemical weapons provocation, currently being prepared by terrorists in Syria, is aimed at allowing France, the United Kingdom and the United States to carry out a full scale invasion on Syria before the November elections, in the US.

For this purpose, USS The Sullivans destroyer with 56 cruise missiles on board arrived in the Persian Gulf several days ago, while a US В-1В bomber carrying 24 air-to-surface AGM-158 JASSM cruise missiles was deployed at Al Udeid air base in Qatar.

Who’s who: Sunni Islamic fascist militias control Idlib. Sunnis make up 90% of all Muslims in the world. 95% of all terrorist organizations are Sunni. The Sunni under Saddam ruled Iraq and killed millions of Shia, Kurds and Christians. It is the Sunni Saudis that are killing Shia in Yemen. It is Sunni ISIS and al Qaida that have committed genocide against Shia, Kurds, Druz and Christians in Syria.

Salafists are radical Sunnis and an offshoot of the Saudi’s Wahhabi sect.

The rebels (ISIS, Al Qaeda, Alawiyat al-Qasioun, White helmets, Grey wolves, Muslim Brotherhood, and all the rest) are not the good guys.

At least Russia has provided a humanitarian corridor before bombings begin. The US never did this in Mosul with an over two million civilian population and then the US cut off their water supply, cell phones and utilities! The US has no morals to be telling Russia how to fight their moderate rebels!

No mention of the thousands of civilians killed in Raqqua by US bombing, as the world inches closer to World War III.

TheAmericanConservative: On August 9, a Saudi airstrike hit a school bus and killed dozens, including many children. The Saudis have also bombed Yemeni schoolsweddings, and hospitals.

It’s a human rights catastrophe that—despite the fact that America has no quarrel with Yemen or the Yemeni people—President Trump is subsidizing. With its most recent deal to arm the Saudis costing the U.S. over a billion dollars, small government conservatives should be much more concerned about the price tag of this bloody foreign intervention.

Recent events in Syria indicate that “the United States [is] seemingly looking to cement a north-south ‘Sunni axis’ from the Gulf states and Jordan to Turkey,” Fabrice Balanche, a French expert on Syria and a visiting fellow at The Washington institute for Near East Policy, wrote recently.

Iran defeats ISIS: Without the work and help of Iran, ISIS and Al-Qaeda terrorists would take over many countries. The root of all Arab terror groups is in Saudi Arabia teaching of Wahhabi savages. Just like in Afghanistan, Pakistan and the rest of the Arab world.

I want to thank Iran for being the first and only country fighting ISIS in Iraq when Obama denied its existence. I want to thank Iran and Russia for defending a non religious government in Syria from the jihadists fanatics backed by America, Israel, Saudi Arabia that want to impose a Sharia regime.

US interference: Idlib is the last strong hold of Western/Saudi backed Sunni Islamic-Fascist thug militias. Once they have been destroyed peace can return to Syria. The Syrian government has offered to evacuate any civilians that wish to do so.

Hillary In Leaked Email: Saudi Arabia And Qatar Are Funding ISIS (DailyCaller)

The United States is providing de-facto cover for Islamic State units in Syria and only pretending to fight terrorism in the Middle East, the Russian Defense Ministry said on Tuesday.

The ministry said the U.S. air force had tried to hinder Russian strikes on Islamic State militants around the Syrian town of Albu Kamal.

“These facts are conclusive evidence that the United States, while imitating an uncompromising fight against international terrorism for the global community, in fact provides cover for Islamic State units,” the defense ministry said.

Government watchdog Judicial Watch published more than 100 pages of formerly classified documents from the U.S. Department of Defense and the State Department.

The documents obtained through a federal lawsuit, revealed the agencies earlier views on ISIS, namely that they were a desirable presence in Eastern Syria in 2012 and that they should be “supported” in order to isolate the Syrian regime.

The U.S. intelligence documents not only confirms suspicions that the United States and some of its coalition allies had actually facilitated the rise of the ISIS in Syria – as a counterweight to the Syrian government of President Bashar al-Assad- but also that ISIS members were initially trained by members and contractors of the Central Intelligence Agency at facilities in Jordan in 2012.

‘CIA created ISIS’, says Julian Assange as Wikileaks releases 500k US cables (YahooNews)

Former director of the Defense Intelligence Agency Michael Flynn confirms to Al Jazeera’s Mehdi Hasan that not only had he studied the DIA memo predicting the West’s backing of an Islamic State in Syria when it came across his desk in 2012, but even asserts that the White House’s sponsoring of radical jihadists (that would emerge as ISIL and Nusra) against the Syrian regime was “a willful decision.”

The large scale air campaign which has resulted in countless civilian casualties has been routinely misreported by the mainstream media. According to  Max Boot, senior fellow in national security at the Council on Foreign Relations. ”Obama’s strategy in Syria and Iraq was not working… [ because] the U.S. bombing campaign against ISIS has been remarkably restrained”. (Newsweek, February 17, 2015, emphasis added).

The evidence confirms that the Islamic State is not the target. Quite the opposite. The air raids are intended to destroy the economic infrastructure of Iraq and Syria. (In comparison, the NATO bombing raids of Yugoslavia in 1999 lasted about three months (March 24-June 10, 1999).

The Islamic State is not only protected by the US and its allies, it is trained and financed by US-NATO, with the support of Israel and Washington’s Persian Gulf allies.

The Global War on Terrorism is a fabrication used to justify a war of conquest. The Jihadist terrorists are “Made in America”. They are instruments of US intelligence, yet they are presented to public opinion as “enemies of America”.

“The United States and some European allies are using defense contractors to train Syrian rebels on how to secure chemical weapons stockpiles in Syria, a senior U.S. official and several senior diplomats told CNN. (CNN Report, December 9, 2012)

Confirmed by media reports, the illustrious pro-democracy former LIFG leader Abdelhakim Belhadj (alias Sadeeq), who worked in close liaison with US-NATO in 2011 has now (February 2015) joined the leadership of the Islamic State in Libya, thereby facilitating the extension of the Islamic State project into the Maghreb, on behalf of his US-NATO sponsors.

The Jerusalem Post reported on Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s visit to the IDF field hospital in the occupied Golan heights.

This hospital was set up to treat wounded Al Nusrah mercenaries, who are directly supported by the Israeli military operating out of the Golan Heights. The JP acknowledges that the hospital is being used to support the jihadist insurgency.

Syria’s not the target but a stepping stone

As Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said in 2010, the Saudis “want to fight the Iranians to the last American.” Why the Saudis would see this as attractive is clear. Why Netanyahu would like to go along with this also follows a certain logic. That is not the mystery in this drama. The mystery is why the president of the United States would go along with something that so clearly contradicts U.S. national interest.

“American unwillingness to confront Iran and its proxies in Syria, if obliged by circumstances, is a thing of the past,” Frederic Hof, director of the Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East and a former State Department liaison to Syrian opposition forces, told The Christian Science Monitor.

“And Moscow would now have to anticipate with high likelihood aerial combat with US forces should it elect to provide tactical air support to Iran and its proxies on the ground,” Hof added.

“Our people are gathering in the Tanf area right now, so a clash is definitely coming,” a Hezbollah unit commander in Beirut, speaking on condition of anonymity, told The Monitor.

Turkey said the United States has 13 bases in Syria and Russia has five. The U.S-backed Syrian YPG Kurdish militia has said Washington has established seven military bases in areas of northern Syria.

U.S.’s Mattis says ‘zero intelligence’ that rebels in Syria’s Idlib have chemical weapons capability By Idrees Ali

New Delhi (Reuters) – There was “zero intelligence” of chemical weapons capabilities possessed by groups opposing Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in the province of Idlib, U.S. Defence Secretary Jim Mattis said, adding that the facts did not back Russian assertions.

Syrian government forces plan a phased offensive in Idlib and surrounding areas held by rebels opposed to Assad, who has been backed by both Russian and Iranian forces in the country’s civil war.

Russian and Syrian jets hammered the rebel stronghold on Tuesday, days before the leaders of Russia, Iran and Turkey meet to discuss the expected Syrian government offensive that could spark a humanitarian disaster.

In the past few days, Russian officials, cited by Russian media, have said there was a plan by “militants” to stage a false chemical weapons attack in Idlib province to frame Assad.

“We have zero intelligence that shows the opposition has any chemical capability,” Mattis told reporters traveling with him to the Indian capital of New Delhi for a high-level dialogue on Thursday between the south Asian nation and the United States.

Russia’s Ambassador to the United States Anatoly Antonov said he had told U.S. officials that Moscow was concerned over signs the United States was preparing new strikes on Syria and warned against “groundless and illegal aggression against Syria.”

“We have made very clear that by putting out innuendo that somehow any chemical weapon use coming up in the future could be ascribed to the opposition, well, we want to see the data,” Mattis said. “We cannot see anything that indicates the opposition has that capability.”

He said instead there was a history of Assad’s government using such weapons.

U.S. President Donald Trump has twice ordered U.S.-led strikes against targets in Syria in response to what Washington called the Assad government’s use of chemical weapons against civilians.

On Tuesday the White House said that if Assad used chemical weapons “the United States and its allies would respond swiftly and appropriately.”

Asked if he saw indications of the Syrian government preparing to use chemical weapons in Idlib, Mattis said, ” I think the best answer to that is, we are very alert.”

Sputnik, a Russian state-owned news outlet, said recently the White Helmets rescue service had delivered a large shipment of toxic substances to “local armed militant groups.”

The Pentagon said the Russian government was using a “concentrated disinformation campaign” to discredit the United States and its allies.

“That Russia is seeking to plant false lies about chemical weapons use suggests that Moscow is seeking to deflect from its own culpability when these heinous weapons are used,” Commander Sean Robertson, a Pentagon spokesman, said in a statement.

Maj. Gen. Alexei Tsygankov, head of the Russian Center for Syrian Reconciliation, said on Sunday that the White Helmets group in Syria plans to film videos for Middle Eastern and English-language media outlets after staging a false-flag chemical weapons attack aimed at sharply destabilizing the situation in the war-torn country.

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov stressed that the Nusra Front terrorist group, which now refers to itself as the Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham group, was plotting a very serious provocation in the Idlib area with the use of chemical weapons. According to the deputy minister, the White Helmets group in Syria will film a video of the “chemical attack,” and the provocation might be used as a pretext for massive strikes on Syria.

A phone call from a resident of the village of Serakab in Idlib province about the planned incident.

According to the source, on the afternoon of February 12, rebels from the Jabhat Al-Nusra (Al-Nusra Front) terrorist organization brought three cars packed with more than 20 cylinders of chlorine along with personal protective equipment to Serakab.

The White Helmets have been long hailed by the Western media as “peace-bearing heroes” who save human lives. However, the group has been dogged by allegations of having ties with terrorist groups.

Swedish Professors & Doctors For Human Rights (SWEDHR) is an independent, non-profit, non-partisan, non-governmental organization engaged in the research and reporting on the effects of war-crimes, torture and human-rights transgressions on civilian populations or on individuals.

Actor George Clooney knew that the organization Swedish Doctors for Human Rights had cited the “White Helmets” as child killers when he produced the Oscar winning propaganda video.

Moreover, Google itself is involved, at war with this group and others, censoring them from their search engines.  The information here will be new to Americans.  

Please note that at no time has the White House or any western media acknowledged the controversy regarding the White Helmets, which we allege is part of al Qaeda’s propaganda operations.  Nor is any mention of the dozens of proven gas attacks by FSA, ISIS and al Nusra which are suddenly “forgotten” as though by magic.

The White Helmets, supposedly an independent NGO, receives up to $100m from the CIA and UK Foreign Office, “dark project” funding.  Murdering children is their stock and trade as we will prove.  Sharing headquarters with Turkish Intelligence in Gaziantep, Turkey this organization is far more “death squad” than civil defense.

The Chairman of the association, Professor Prof. Marcello fer rada de Noli, published at the beginning of March 2017 a first article with an analysis of the case: “Swedish Doctors for Human Rights: White Helmets video, macabre manipulation of dead children and staged chemical weapons attack to justify a” No-fly Zone “in Syria”.

Hundreds of Syrian White Helmets evacuated to Jordan through Israel By CBSNews

The Israeli military in coordination with its U.S. and European allies evacuated hundreds of Syrian rescue workers known as the White Helmets from near its volatile frontier with Syria, in a complex and first-of-a-kind operation. Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi said Sunday that 422 White Helmets volunteers were evacuated, instead of the initial 800 cleared for the operation.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in a separate video statement, said U.S. President Trump, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and others had asked him to help evacuate the group’s members.

“We renew our call on the Assad regime and Russia to abide by their commitments, end the violence, and protect all Syrian civilians, including humanitarians such as the White Helmets, in areas formerly part of the southwest de-escalation zone and throughout Syria,” State Department Spokesperson Heather Nauert said in a statement.

The White Helmets have enjoyed backing and received finances and training from the United States and other Western nations for years.

The White Helmets have been called “terrorists,” accused of being “agents” for foreign powers, and of cooperating with radical insurgent groups. The White Helmets have been accused of staging rescue missions and chemical attacks to blame on the government.

Syrian lawmaker Khaled Abboud said that “foreign powers are pulling their agents out of the battlefield” because of the Syrian military victories that have quashed the “aggression” against Syria.

Separately Sunday, al-Ikhbariya TV quoted a military official as saying that a military post in the town of Masyaf in Hama province was hit by an Israeli airstrike. The area houses several defense ministry facilities.

© 2018 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

PREPARING FOR WORLD WAR 

New satellite images appear to indicate that Iran is building a new ‎surface-to-surface missile factory in Syria, raising ‎fresh concerns in Israel over the extent of the two ‎countries’ military cooperation across from Israel’s northern border, Channel 10 News recently reported.

Israel has mounted several airstrikes against ‎Iranian assets in Syria in an effort to stave off ‎Iran’s attempts to entrench itself ‎militarily in war-torn Syria.‎

Newsweek: The U.S. has also repeatedly accused Iran of supplying ballistic missiles to Yemen’s Zaidi Shiite Muslim rebels—known as Ansar Allah or the Houthis—and currently engaged in a war against a Saudi-led coalition trying to reinstate the country’s government. Defense Secretary James Mattis warned Tuesday that “Iran has been put on notice” due to their support for Assad, the Houthis and threats regarding the Strait of Hormuz, the world’s busiest oil chokepoint. On Thursday, Iranian military general staff chief Major General Mohammad Hossein Bagheri warned that no oil would pass through the crucial shipping lane should the U.S. succeed in cutting Iran’s oil exports to zero, an initiative that has earned Trump widespread international criticism.  

Citing three Iranian officials, two Iraqi intelligence sources and two Western intelligence sources, Reuters reported Friday that Tehran has begun supplying Shiite Muslim paramilitary groups in neighboring Iraq with short-range ballistic missiles. The missiles were identified as Zelzal, Fateh-110 and Zulfiqar models with ranges varying from 124 to 435 miles, making Riyadh and Tel Aviv viable targets should the weapons be fired from western Iraq.

Bloomberg: Over the coming weeks, both NATO and Russia will launch a series of super-high-end war games. These games are hardly for fun — rather, they are deadly serious practice sessions for hundreds of thousands of soldiers, thousands of combat aircraft, and flotillas of combat ships. While no one will die (other than by accident, a not uncommon occurrence in such exercises), the messages going back and forth are crystal clear: We are prepared for war.

Russia’s exercise is called Vostok — which means “east” — and will be held principally east of the Ural Mountains. It is the largest military exercise by Russia since Soviet times (in 1981) and will deploy 300,000 troops and more than 1,000 military aircraft. Of note, China will participate with thousands of its troops operating alongside the Russians (there will also be a token contingent of troops from Mongolia, which has been a partner to both Russia and NATO at times).

NATO will conduct its own huge military exercise, named Trident Junction 2018. It will take place on the northern borders of the alliance and will involve 40,000 troops from all 29 nations, a couple of hundred aircraft and dozens of warships. While not as spectacularly large as Russia’s Vostok, it will serve as a “graduation exercise” for NATO’s new Spearhead Force, a serious, highly mobile capability that can put NATO combat troops into the Baltic states to repulse a Russian invasion within a matter of days.

Finally, it is worth looking specifically at the maritime dimension of both the Russian and NATO exercises. It is not a coincidence that the NATO operation will be commanded not by a general, but rather by a four-star U.S. admiral, Jamie Foggo. A former commander of NATO submarine forces and the legendary U.S. Sixth Fleet in the Mediterranean, Foggo has thought deeply (and frequently published) about maritime operations in the current NATO-Russia environment. There will be significant maritime groups both from NATO and Russia operating in the Baltic Sea, Black Sea, eastern Mediterranean and even the Arctic.

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Instagram Video: Slavery Alive and well in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia

By Krista Thurrott

An Instagram celebrity is coming under harsh criticism after sharing a video rant about new laws improving the rights of domestic workers.

Sondos Alqattan, a Kuwaiti makeup artist, shared her outrage around new legislation allowing maids to take one day off each week and to keep their passports in their own possession.

The labor laws were introduced to protect the rights of Filipino domestic workers in Kuwait, but Alqattan isn’t a fan.

“How can you have a servant at home who keeps their own passport with them?” asked Alqattan in a video that has since been removed. “What’s worse is they have one day off every week… If they run away and go back to their country, who will refund me? Honestly I disagree with this law. I don’t want a Filipino maid any more.”

Seated in her luxury car ranting to her more than 2.3 million followers, the beauty blogger sparked outrage in the Philippines and Middle East.

Migrante International, a Filipino advocacy group, likened Alqattan’s comments to those of a “slave owner” with an outlook “that literally belongs to the dark ages.” The group is calling on the social media star to publicly apologize for her demeaning comments.

The agreement between the Philippines and Kuwait came after months of strained relations. In February there was a temporary ban on Filipino workers traveling to Kuwait after a domestic worker was found dismembered in the freezer of a flat.

The agreement was signed to eliminate tension and improve the human rights of Filipino workers in Kuwait.

As for Alqattan, two major beauty brands have ended their contracts with her as a result of her rant. She continues to defend her position, sharing a follow-up post addressing the “rumors.”

She has since disabled comments on her social media accounts.

The outrage continues as people call for other high-profile brands that sponsor the influencer — most notably Max Factor and MAC Cosmetics — to cancel their contracts.

Hundreds of Mauritanian women trafficked to Saudi Arabia trapped in ‘slavery’

More than 900 Mauritanian women have been trafficked to Saudi Arabia in 2015, where they are trapped working in jobs they did not sign up for, a local activist has told Middle East Eye (MEE).

The women believed they were going to be employed as nurses or teachers, but on arrival in Saudi Arabia they were forced to work as domestic workers in homes across the kingdom, Elmehdi Ould Lemrabott, who is based in Mauritania’s capital Nouakchott, told MEE.

“Some of these women who objected were subjected to rape attempts, sexual harassment, physical abuse and starvation – as well as being confined to tiny rooms,” Lemrabott said.

Saudi Arabia began letting workers from Mauritania into the country at the beginning of 2015. Riyadh’s Ministry of Labour advertised jobs specified for men (drivers, waiters and domestic workers) and jobs specified for women (nurses, primary schoolteachers and domestic workers).

The opportunity attracted a high number of applications due to Mauritania’s high unemployment rate – currently above 30 percent – and widespread poverty, which is experienced by more than 40 percent of the North African country’s nearly four million people.

A black market quickly sprang up to take advantage of local interest in Saudi-based jobs, according to Lemrabott, which the government did not pick up on.

“A group of people opened secret employment offices not in accordance with the law and away from the sight of authorities,” Lemrabott said. “Women are being trafficked one by one secretly so the authorities do not take notice.”

Before the women travel to Saudi Arabia, they sign contracts that promise them a salary of 1,200 Saudi riyals per month ($320), more than double the average national wage in Mauritania. The contract includes a stipulation that the employee must repay their travel costs once in Saudi Arabia.

“This allows the manager of the employment office the right to receive the employee’s salary for the first few months of their employment until the money is repaid,” Lemrabott told MEE.

The salary is often much lower than the one originally promised, Lemrabott added, as on arrival the women have their identity documents seized and contracts “replaced with one that effectively turns them into slaves in the households they work in”.

MEE spoke to one woman who was trafficked to Saudi Arabia, but after a brief phone call she said that she was too scared of the repercussions to be quoted in the media.

Many of the women have desperately spoken out about their suffering, primarily to a new campaign group set up in the Mauritanian capital called the Popular Initiative against the Violation of the Haratin Women Workers’ Rights in Saudi Arabia.

The Initiative, of which Lemrabott is a member, says the workers in Saudi Arabia claim that they have been forced to work 18 hours a day with no breaks and are not granted time off at weekends or paid overtime. Others have accused their Saudi employers of physical abuse and sexual harassment, including attempted rape.

The initiative is named after the Haratin ethnic group, which comprises 40 percent of Mauritania’s population. Many Haratins are descended from slaves – a practice abolished in 1981 and only criminalized in 2007 by Mauritania – but poor access to education has led to reports some have returned to their former masters out of necessity and been returned to slave-like conditions.

For the Haratin women who have sought a better life in Saudi Arabia, but been thrown into allegedly abusive conditions, they have fallen off the radar for Mauritanian authorities.

The workers are not registered with employment offices in Saudi Arabia, which means Nouakchott is not aware of their presence in the kingdom.

“This is due to the fact that the process is done individually and illegally by anonymous offices [on the Mauritanian black market],” Lemrabott said.

Out of the nine million migrant workers in Saudi Arabia, almost a third are undocumented. In 2013, the Saudi government embarked on a two-year long deportation campaign in which as many as half a million undocumented migrant workers out of nearly three million were kicked out of the country.

Despite migrant workers constituting over half the workforce in Saudi Arabia, they remain vulnerable to exploitation and abuse by their employers and are not protected by labor laws.

Many of these workers suffer from excessive working hours, wages withheld for months or years on end, food deprivation, and severe psychological, physical and sexual abuse.

When, or if, Mauritanian authorities try to confront alleged abuses of their citizens in Saudi Arabia, Human Rights Watch has warned it may be a significant challenge for such a poor country.

“It is cheaper for Saudi Arabia to import labour from countries such as Mauritania, who are poor and do not have the resources with which to protect trafficked citizens,” said Adam Coogle, Middle East researcher at Human Rights Watch.

“Whereas, with somewhere like the Philippines, we have seen the government successfully negotiate minimum salaries and improved working conditions for their citizens who are working in Saudi Arabia.”

After numerous reports of Filipino workers being abused in Saudi Arabia, authorities in the southeast Asian country moved to demand Riyadh uphold a minimum wage of $400 per month and safeguard living standards including a weekly day off and the right for workers to keep possession of their passport.

Although Saudi authorities banned all Filipino workers for one year, they eventually ceded to the demands.

For now, the newly established initiative to protect Haratin workers is calling on Mauritanian authorities to intervene and have the women trapped in Saudi Arabia returned home. A demonstration was recently held in front of the Saudi embassy in Nouakchott, but Lemrabott said the response was negative.

“It was suppressed violently by riot police, and a number of activists from within the initiative were arrested,” he said. “And the authorities have not responded to any of the demands.”

“The government is turning a blind eye to the issue,” he added, saying more protests are being planned for the future.

Local trade unions – including the General Confederation of Workers of Mauritania and the Najda Organization for Slavery – are also trying to pressure authorities into shutting down illegal traffickers. The unions have also called for an official process to be established protecting people who want to work in Saudi Arabia.

The International Trade Union Confederation, which receives daily reports on trafficking from their Mauritanian counterparts, has called on Nouakchott to confront the issue immediately.

“Mauritania needs to act immediately to free the women who have been trafficked to Saudi Arabia and trapped in domestic slavery there, and to stop the traffickers and bring them to justice,” Sharan Burrow, ITUC general secretary, said in a statement.

The Saudi and Mauritanian embassies in London did not respond to requests for comment at the time of publication.

Saudi Arabia: The Middle East’s Real Apartheid State By Daniel Greenfield

There is a country in the Middle East where 10 percent of the population is denied equal rights because of their race, where black men are not allowed to hold many government positions, where black women are put on trial for witchcraft and where the custody of children is granted to the parent with the most “racially superior” bloodline.

This Apartheid State is so enormously powerful that it controls American foreign policy in the Middle East even as its princes and princesses bring their slaves to the United Kingdom and the United States.

That country is Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia abolished slavery in 1962 under pressure from President Kennedy, who accomplished what the Ottoman Empire and the League of Nations had not been able to, but that hasn’t stopped its citizens from selling castrated slaves on Facebook or its princes from beating their black slaves to death in posh London hotels.

The Saudis had clung to their racist privileges longer than anyone else. When rumors reached Mecca that the Ottoman Empire might be considering the abolition of African slavery and equal rights for all, the chief of the Ulema of Mecca issued a fatwa declaring “the ban on slaves is contrary to Sharia (Islamic Law)… with such proposals the Turks have become infidels and it is lawful to make their children slaves.”

But Saudi Arabia’s oil wealth eventually made slavery economically unnecessary. Early on, African slaves worked for foreign oil companies which paid their masters, but they were a poor fit for the oil economy. The Kingdom no longer needed agricultural slaves and pearl drivers; it needed trained technicians from the West and international travel made it cheaper to import Asian workers for household labor and construction than to maintain its old trade in slaves.

The Saudis replaced the 450,000 slaves of the 1950s with 8.4 million guest workers. These workers are often treated like slaves, but they are not property and are therefore even more disposable than the slaves were. Exact numbers are hard to come by, but Nepal alone reported 265 worker deaths in Saudi Arabia in a single year.

Human Rights Watch has described conditions for foreign workers in Saudi Arabia as resembling slavery.

Meanwhile the three million Afro-Saudis are denied equal rights, prevented from serving as judges, security officials, diplomats, mayors and many other official positions. Afro-Saudi women are not allowed to appear on camera.

“There is not one single black school principal in Saudi Arabia,” the Institute for Gulf Affairs, a Saudi human rights group, reported.

Kafa’ah, equality in marriage, is used to establish that both sides are free from the “taint” of slave blood. The blood of Takruni, West African slaves, or Mawalid, slaves who gained their freedom by converting to Islam, is kept out of the Saudi master race through genealogical records that can be presented at need.

Challenges to the Kafa’ah of a marriage occur when tribal members uncover African descent in the husband or the wife after the marriage has already occurred. The racially inferior party is ordered to present “proof of equality” in the form of family trees and witnesses. If the couple is judged unequal, the Saudi Gazette reported, “Children’s custody is usually given to the ‘racially superior’ parent.”

These Saudi efforts at preventing their former slaves from intermarrying with them have only accelerated their incestuous inbreeding. In parts of Saudi Arabia, the percentage of marriages among blood relatives can go as high as 70%.

Saudi Arabia has the second highest rate of birth defects in the world, but a Saudi Sheikh blamed this phenomenon on female drivers, even though women are not allowed to drive in Saudi Arabia.

Equality has always been a foreign concept to the Saudis whose tribal castes determine the right to rule. In Saudi Arabia everyone has their place, from the Afro-Saudi, to the non-Muslim guest worker to the Saudi woman.

On the road to Mecca, a sign points one way for “Muslims” and another for “Non-Muslims.” Only Muslims are allowed into the holy cities of Islam. A Christian truck driver from Sri Lanka who wandered into Mecca was arrested and dispatched for trial to a Sharia court of Islamic law.

Likewise, women are barred from many jobs, kept from driving and even electronically tracked to prevent them from leaving the country. Guest workers in Saudi Arabia are treated as slaves, their identity papers held by their employers, preventing them from leaving without permission.

The guest workers however, if they survive the witchcraft accusations and sexual assaults, will escape back to Ethiopia, Sri Lanka or the Philippines with a fraction of the money that they were supposed to earn. The Afro-Saudis however have nowhere to return to. Saudi Arabia is the only home they know.

The Arab slave trade was longer, crueler and far more enduring than anything Europeans and Americans are familiar with and left behind large numbers of Afro-Arabs across the Middle East and Afro-Turks in Turkey. While African-Americans are prominently represented in American life, Afro-Arabs and Afro-Turks suffer from an inferior status which keeps them away from political power and out of public view.

American soldiers in Basra were surprised to discover large numbers of Afro-Iraqis. The hundreds of thousands of Afro-Iraqis are a legacy of the Zanj slave rebellion when 500,000 African slaves rose against their Arab masters. The Afro-Iraqis are free, but relentlessly discriminated against. In Gaza, 10,000 Afro-Arabs face daily discrimination. But it is the Afro-Saudis who are the Middle East’s best kept secret.

Nawal Al-Hawsawi was dubbed the Rosa Parks of Saudi Arabia when she took three women to court who insultingly called her “Abd” or slave. Nawal dropped the court case after she received an apology, but the taunt of “slave” is one that Afro-Saudis have to live with daily in Saudi Arabia.

“The monarchy’s religious tradition still views blacks as slaves,” Ali Al-Ahmed, the Director of the Institute for Gulf Affairs, wrote in Foreign Policy Magazine.

The Institute blames Deputy Saudi Foreign Minister Abdul Aziz Bin Abdullah, the son of the Saudi king, for being the architect of the Saudi apartheid state, but Saudi apartheid predates any one man.

Saudi slavery was intertwined with Islam, receiving sanction from the Koran and the Hadiths while relying on the Saudi role as the guardians of Mecca and Medina to lure African Muslims into slavery. African Muslims who made the pilgrimage to Mecca were defrauded and forced to sell their children into slavery to afford the return trip home. Slave traders lured African Muslims from Sudan, Mali and Burkina Faso by promising to take them to the holy places of Islam and teach them to read the Koran in Arabic.

Sheikh Saleh Al-Fawzan, a leading authority on Islam in Saudi Arabia, bluntly stated, “Slavery is a part of Islam. Slavery is part of jihad, and jihad will remain as long there is Islam.” The linkage between slavery, Jihad and Islam dates back to Mohammed whose followers were compensated with human property.

In The Legacy of Arab-Islam in Africa, John Alembillah Azumah writes that, “In pre-Islamic Arabia blacks were held in high esteem and did marry Arab women … the discrimination on account of the colour of their skin is a development within the Islamic period.”

Racism was a necessary prerequisite to the expansion of Islam through Jihad. The land that is today known as Saudi Arabia was at the center of those conquests, growing rich in slaves and loot. Today it is once again at the center of the new Jihad, its every atrocity justified by its role in the holy wars of Islam.

Saudi Arabia is a destination country for men and women trafficked for the purposes of involuntary servitude and, to a lesser extent, commercial sexual exploitation. Men and women from Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, Indonesia, Sudan, Ethiopia, and many other countries voluntarily travel to Saudi Arabia as domestic servants or other low-skilled laborers, but some subsequently face conditions indicative of involuntary servitude, including restrictions on movement, withholding of passports, threats, physical or sexual abuse, and non-payment of wages. Women, primarily from Asian and African countries are also believed to have been trafficked into Saudi Arabia for commercial sexual exploitation; others were reportedly kidnapped and forced into prostitution after running away from abusive employers.

Some Saudi men have also used legally contracted “temporary marriages” in countries such as Mauritania, Yemen, and Indonesia as a means by which to sexually exploit migrant workers. Females as young as seven years old are led to believe they are being wed in earnest, but upon arrival in Saudi Arabia subsequently become their husbands’ sexual slaves, are forced into domestic labor and, in some cases, prostitution.   – U.S. State Dept Trafficking in Persons Report, June, 2009 [full country report]

Countries in the Middle East have been named as the worst culprits of human trafficking.

A new report by an international trade unions’ umbrella organization says Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Yemen are notorious destinations for women trafficked from Kenya.

Its report, ‘Trafficking in Persons — The Eastern Africa Situation’, notes that women and children were favorite targets for well-organized trafficking rings, which operate freely for lack of solid laws against the vice.

The Saudi government has denied a recent report released by the US Department of State ranking the kingdom as one of the largest human traffickers in the world.

Indian girls held captive for sex trade in Saudi Arabia
By Kaustuvmoni

More than fifty-six Indian girls have been cornered in the sex and slave trade in Saudi Arabia capital Riyadh, revealed a victim who succeeded to escape and returned to India. According to media reports, most of the victims are hailing from Darjeeling, Kalimpong, Kurseong and Nepal. All these girls were sent for jobs in Saudi Arabia during the last two months through several job consultant agencies. Nish Rai, hailed from Darjeeling somehow stole her passport and succeeded in returning to India. The escaped girl alleged that the girls underwent sexual, physical and mental tortures and were forced into prostitution.

Meanwhile, Darjeeling cops said that West Bengal CID and state government would launch an investigation into the case with the help of the External Affairs ministry. Moreover, police are now trying to trace the families of the captive girls in Saudi. Police also detained two job consultants to get some clues into the matter.

Iraqi Militia Finds Horrifying Pics of Slave Market in Saudi Arabia

Fighters of the Popular Mobilization Units (PMU) seized a jihadi’s phone after he was killed fighting in the Iraqi town of Al-Shirqat. On it they found a picture of a young woman, believed to be a Yazidi, kneeling on the floor in front of a crowd of men.

Using location tracking data from the phone the militia identified the event as a slave auction in Saudi Arabia.

“Our investigation officer was appalled at the set of images involving what we believe to be an Iraqi Yazidi woman taken as a sex slave,” a spokesperson from the PMU told the Sun Online.

The Yazidis are an Iraqi ethnic group with their own religion, who have been persecuted by the Islamic State who regard them as devil worshippers. Many Yazidi women and girls were kidnapped in 2014 and taken into sex-slavery.

There were “images were of the auction in Saudi Arabia of the woman and sexually explicit materials of the fighter and the woman in a hotel. Location data was observed on the image file as enabled by default on many smart phones,” he added.

Of course, you never hear of Saudi Arabia being involved in the purchase of Yazidi sex slaves, but I’m willing to bet there are hundreds of Yazidi girls living as slaves in Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states. This heinous act needs to be investigated as a crime against humanity, but with Saudi Arabia’s overreaching influence in the UN, that will never happen.

Faisal bin Hassan Trad, Saudi Arabia’s ambassador at the UN in Geneva, has been elected as chair of a panel of independent experts on the UN Human Rights Council. That’s like electing Hitler to lead the Palestinian peace initiative. Another nail in the coffin of redundancy for the UN. Actually, redundancy might not be the right word; ‘malignancy’ might be more accurate.

“Further images involved ISIS members in Iraqi-areas occupied by ISIS including Mosul and Baiji, which indicates this fighter has been with ISIS for a long period of time as Baiji was liberated by us months ago,” he said.

The misdeeds and human rights violations by Saudi Arabia are astonishing, but do not stop Britain and the Trump Administration from supporting this hardline Islamic state.

 Wealthy Saudis have been accused of sponsoring the terror group [IS] for years…..
The kingdom has also faced numerous accusations of human rights abuses, including torture, degrading punishments and savage executions [in Yemen].

Britain has been selling weapons to Saudi Arabia, despite concerns about the kingdom’s war crimes in Yemen, and it seemed “inevitable” that those war crimes involved UK weapons, “according to a report leaked.”

Beyond providing weapons, Britain has stunned human rights groups by blocking efforts by the EU to establish an independent international inquiry into the alleged war crimes in Yemen.

Yemen has been so brutalized by Saudi Arabia that teams of Doctors Without Borders (DWB) have been forced to evacuate, leaving citizens without care.

In April a hospital run by DWB – which included a maternity ward — was bombed.  According to the New York Times:

American officials have publicly condemned the hospital bombing — and the bombing of a school two days earlier — but the Pentagon has given steady support to the coalition led by Saudi Arabia, with targeting intelligence and fuel for the Saudi planes involved in the air campaign.

So it isn’t just the UK that is supporting the cause of jihadists and their atrocious human rights abuses; so is the Trump Administration. Over $350 billion in arms sales to the kingdom have already been approved by the Trump administration.

Now, adding to all that this latest news about sex slaves captured by the Islamic State and “being sold at sickening auctions in Saudi Arabia,” how can the current leadership of these countries be trusted to protect their own citizens from jihadists and defeat the global scourge of jihad terror?

Even on American soil:

As part of its massive PR offensive, the House of Saud is trying to convince the world that its treatment of women is improving. But a first-hand witness would see a far different reality: women who are literally locked inside homes, paid little or nothing as domestic servants, worked up to 20 hours per day, and verbally and physically abused. This sad state of affairs exists not just in Saudi Arabia, but in Saudi homes right here in the United States. But there are people who know all about it, and even allow the practice to continue unabated on American soil: the U.S. State Department.

Women abused in Saudi homes on American soil receive no assistance from the State Department—even though officials there know what happens behind closed Saudi doors.

Diplomatic Security (DS), State’s law-enforcement arm, has received “many” calls from police stations over the years about Saudi diplomats abusing domestic workers, says a DS officer who spoke on condition of anonymity. But State has yet to provide oversight or inform domestic workers of their rights. Notes Keith Roderick, president of the Coalition for the Defense of Human Rights, who personally helped a woman escape a Saudi home: “When you meet these women and hear their horror stories, it breaks your heart. But after you think about it, it gets you angry, really angry—because State should be doing something about this, but then they turn a cold shoulder to women who want nothing more than to live free.”

Want more?

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War-on-Terror a $20 Trillion Failure

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