Al Qaeda Rebranding Serves US Agenda

March 25, 2017 New Eastern Outlook

The RAND Corporation's recent piece titled, "Al Qaeda in Syria Can Change Its Name, but Not Its Stripes," all but admits what was already suspected about designated terrorist groups operating in Syria - that they are undergoing a transition in an attempt by their state sponsors to bolster their legitimacy and spare them from liquidation amid the shifting tides on the battlefield.


The piece, written by Colin Clarke described by the RAND Corporation as a "political scientist at the RAND Corporation and an associate fellow at the International Center for Counter Terrorism," states:
Following recent infighting with other Syrian rebel groups in the northwestern part of the country, al Qaeda in Syria appears to have recognized the need to secure legitimacy and present itself to the civilian population it seeks to influence as an authentically Syrian entity.
However, this is not simply Al Qaeda's objective - this is the objective of the United States itself as well as the Persian Gulf states it funnels money and arms through, fueling Syria's destructive conflict since 2011.

Clarke continues by stating:
The most likely scenario is that the change in nomenclature is merely an attempt to buy time and live to fight another day. Indeed, the rebranding has done nothing to slow down the group's operations tempo of conducting attacks.
And concludes by claiming:
Six years into the conflict in Syria, al Qaeda's presence in the country has never been stronger. And while most dismiss the notion of al Qaeda as a political entity in Syria, the same was said 30 years ago about Hezbollah — the Shia group that now holds seats in Lebanon's parliament and maintains a vast military wing. If jihadist groups linked to al Qaeda in Syria can succeed in rebranding themselves, they can take steps toward positioning themselves as political players if or when negotiations to end the civil war in Syria gain traction.
Clarke notes that militant groups fighting in Syria - being associated with Al Qaeda - has greatly complicated efforts by the US and its collaborators to fund, arm, and otherwise support their efforts in executing regime change against Damascus.

Hopes of playing a rhetorical shell game that is long and complicated enough to confuse the general public and produce a front ambiguous enough for the West and its regional partners to more directly and widely support is essential. While the overthrow of the Syrian government looks all but impossible at the moment, the US, Turkey, and various Persian Gulf states appear to be maneuvering to annex territory and place it under the control of these "rebranded" terrorist groups.

As previously noted, across the entirety of the Western media, there is a concerted effort to provide cover for what is the preservation of proxy groups fighting in Syria as the conflict draws to an end. Explaining away how these groups will find themselves protected safe havens abroad, or rehabilitate themselves into legitimate political fronts is merely the latest in a long line of ploys Western policymakers have used to pose as fighting terrorist organizations while simultaneously serving as their exclusive state sponsors.


In reality, however "reasonable" the West's repetitive talking points may seem, the prospect of a "legitimate" political front composed of Al Qaeda terrorists is only a possibility if the United States and its regional allies provide it recognition. The prospect of Syria, Russia, Iran or other states outside Washington's sphere of influence recognizing the legitimacy of such an entity is unlikely.


Singapore Bigot Granted Asylum in US: A Taste of Things to Come

March 27, 2017 New Eastern Outlook 

Singaporean Amos Yee fits the description of virtually every foreign-backed agitator used to target and undermine political orders worldwide as part of Washington's "soft power" toolkit. 


He is a young individual who, at 18 years old, was not particularly bright in school and possesses no practical talent or skill with which to contribute to society. Incapable of achieving positive attention based on his merit, he has embarked on a life of seeking negative attention based on his ability to agitate, insult and defame. Much of his behaviour bears the hallmarks of clinical narcissism and other forms of mental illness.

It is very likely that no one at all would have even heard of Amos Yee were it not for the constant attention provided to him by US and European media outlets as well as assistance provided to him by politically motivated "rights advocates" like Amnesty International. More recently, a US court has ruled that Amos Yee qualifies for political asylum in America.

An article published by Quartz titled, "A US judge has granted a Singapore teen blogger political asylum, calling him a “young political dissident”," would report:
A United States judge has granted asylum to Amos Yee, an 18-year-old blogger from Singapore, who has been jailed on two occasions for his public views on religion and politics. Yee came to the US in December under the visa waiver program and requested asylum before an immigration judge, expressing a fear of returning to Singapore. 

Judge Samuel Cole approved his asylum, describing him as a “young political dissident” and saying that his “prosecution, detention and general maltreatment at the hands of Singapore authorities constitute persecution.”
It is perhaps ironic, however, that Amos Yee is not engaged in civilised discourse or legitimate political opposition in Singapore. Instead, he is engaged in the same sort of bigoted, divisive agitation used elsewhere around the world by Western governments to foment division, unrest and even catastrophic violence everywhere from North Africa to the Middle East, and from Eastern Europe to Southeast Asia. Had Amos Yee been attacking homosexuals, ethnic minorities or America's political principles, it is likely he would be labelled a bigot, be targeted by "hate speech" laws in the United States and otherwise silenced.

But because he is targeting a foreign state over which the US seeks influence, his otherwise intolerable agitations have been portrayed as "political dissidence."

Were Singapore more susceptible to such tactics and should the United States and Europe find more agitators like Amos Yee to prop up, unrest and even violence could once again take to Singapore's streets. Like yelling "fire" in a crowded theatre, the unconstructive rhetoric Amos Yee engages in serves only to divide and endanger society, not advance it in any civilised, progressive manner.


US Presence in Korea Drives Instability

March 25, 2017 New Eastern Outlook

US and European interests continue to portray the government and nation of North Korea as a perpetual security threat to both Asia and the world. Allegations regarding the nation's nuclear weapon and ballistic missile programs are continuously used as justification for not only a continuous US military presence on the Korean Peninsula, but as justification for a wider continued presence across all of Asia-Pacific. 


In reality, what is portrayed as an irrational and provocative posture by the North Korean government, is in fact driven by a very overt, and genuinely provocative posture by the United States and its allies within the South Korean government.

During this year's Foal Eagle joint US-South Korean military exercises, US-European and South Korean media sources intentionally made mention of  preparations for a "decapitation" strike on North Korea. Such an operation would be intended to quickly eliminate North Korean military and civilian leadership to utterly paralyze the state and any possible response to what would most certainly be the subsequent invasion, occupation and subjugation of North Korea.

The Business Insider in an article titled, "SEAL Team 6 is reportedly training for a decapitation strike against North Korea's Kim regime," would report:

The annual Foal Eagle military drills between the US and South Korea will include some heavy hitters this year — the Navy SEAL team that took out Osama bin Laden, Army Special Forces, and F-35s — South Korea's Joon Gang Daily reports. 

South Korean news outlets report that the SEALs, who will join the exercise for the first time, will simulate a "decapitation attack," or a strike to remove North Korea's leadership.
To introduce an element of plausible deniability to South Korean reports, the article would continue by stating: 
Pentagon spokesman Cmdr. Gary Ross later told Business Insider that the US military "does not train for decapitation missions" of any kind. 
Yet this is a categorically false statement. Throughout the entirety of the Cold War, US policymakers, military planners and operational preparations focused almost solely on devising methods of "decapitating" the Soviet Union's political and military leadership.

In more recent years, policy papers and the wars inspired by them have lead to documented instances of attempted "decapitation" operations, including the 2011 US-NATO assault on Libya in which the government of Muammar Qaddafi was targeted by airstrikes aimed at crippling the Libyan state and assassinating both members of the Qaddafi family as well as members of the then ruling government.

Similar operations were aimed at Iraq earlier during the 2003 invasion and occupation by US-led forces.

Regarding North Korea more specifically, entire policy papers have been produced by prominent US policy think tanks including the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) devising plans to decimate North Korea's military and civilian leadership, invade and occupy the nation and confound North Korea's capacity to resist what would inevitably be its integration with its southern neighbor.


Keeping the Myth and the Islamic State Alive

March 24, 2017 New Eastern Outlook 

Joint Syrian-Russian-Iranian operations against foreign-funded and armed militant groups across Syrian territory have incrementally dismantled and frustrated the fighting capacity of groups including the so-called Islamic State, Al Nusra, Al Qaeda, and a myriad of other fronts coordinated and arrayed from abroad against Damascus.


With the Russian intervention in late 2015, considerable air power was applied to these militant fronts' logistical lines extending beyond Syria's borders. As the supplies were cut, Syrian forces and their allies were able to isolate and eliminate one stronghold after another.

Now, many of these groups face defeat within Syria, prompting their foreign sponsors into two courses of action - posing as the forces responsible for their defeat as the US and Turkey are attempting to do amid their respective, illegal incursions into Syrian territory, and creating a narrative to serve as cover for the evacuation and harboring of these militant groups elsewhere for future use.

Terrorist Organizations are Empire's Modern Mercenaries 

Just before and since the fall of the Ottoman Empire in the early 20th century, Anglo-American interests have cultivated militant groups across its territory to divide and conquer the entire region - contributing toward Washington and London's greater global hegemonic ambitions.

The terrorist organization known as Al Qaeda, created in part from the shattered remains of the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood defeated by Hafez Al Assad in the 1980's, would be deployed next to Afghanistan after their foreign-backed bid to overthrow the Syrian government failed.

Since then, Al Qaeda has participated in NATO operations in the Balkans, across the Middle East and North Africa, and even as far as Asia. The group operates as both a casus belli for Western intervention globally, and as a proxy force able to wage war against governments Western military forces are unable to confront directly as was the case in Libya and currently in Syria.

Al Qaeda and its various subsidiaries and affiliates - including the Islamic State - also serve in an auxiliary capacity such as in Yemen where they hold territory taken by mechanized forces from Persian Gulf invaders.

While Western narratives attempt to portray these militant fronts as independent terrorist organizations operating beyond both international law and the reach of superior Western military and intelligence capabilities, in reality, this narrative is cover for what is obvious state sponsored proxy terrorism and militancy.

The United States has all but admitted its role in the creation of these organizations as well as their ongoing role in their perpetuation. The use of US allies including Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to launder money, weapons, training, and other forms of political and material support through has also been extensively documented.


Hong Kong: Anglo-America's Struggling Foothold in China

March 22, 2017 New Eastern Outlook 

Prominent American propagandist Howard French recently published a lengthy editorial in the Guardian titled, "Is it too late to save Hong Kong from Beijing’s authoritarian grasp?," in which he attempts to buttress an otherwise categorically false narrative surrounding an alleged indigenous struggle for democracy and independence within Hong Kong.


French attempts to hold China accountable for backtracking on an agreement made with Britain over the return of its own territory taken from it by force in 1841. He also attempts to portray Beijing's crackdown on US-UK subversion in Hong Kong as "authoritarian," never making mention of the extensive funding and meddling both the United States and the United Kingdom are engaged in within Chinese territory.

The article documents only one side of the so-called "independence" movement in Hong Kong, sidestepping any critical analysis of the colonial background of the ongoing political crisis or the neo-colonial aspects that shape current events even now.

The lengthy piece was paid for by a grant from the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting, a Washington D.C.-based front that collaborates with the New York Times, PBS, NPR, Time Magazine and other mainstays of US propaganda. These are the same media outlets that helped sell the US invasion and occupation of Afghanistan and Iraq, as well as US-led attacks on Libya and US meddling in Syria beginning in 2011. By supporting French's work, they now help sell to the public a narrative that undermines Chinese sovereignty an ocean away from American shores.

The entire editorial, its contents, author and the special interests that paid for it as well as its placement in the Guardian, represent a continued and concerted effort to maintain an Anglo-American foothold in Hong Kong, part of the last vestiges of Western hegemony within Chinese territory.

The Truth About Hong Kong 

Had Howard French penned an honest account of Hong Kong's recent political crisis, he would have included the extensive, some may say exclusive, control the United States and the United Kingdom exercised over an otherwise fictitious and impossible pro-independence movement.  Quite literally every leader of the so-called "Umbrella Revolution" is either directly funded and directed by the US and/or UK government, or possesses membership within an organisation, institution or front funded by Anglo-American money.

The notion that a teen-aged Joshua Wong was single-handedly defying Beijing is preposterous even at face value. He was but one cog of a much larger, well-documented foreign-funded machine aimed at stirring up conflict within Hong Kong, undermine Beijing's control of the territory and infect Chinese society as a whole with notions of Western-style "democracy."


Just months before the 2014 "Umbrella Revolution," one of its leaders, Martin Lee, was literally in Washington D.C., before members of the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), pleading for material and political support for upcoming demonstrations. Toward the end of that same year, and despite NED denying Lee was a protest leader, Lee would find himself in the streets of Hong Kong leading the protests from the front shoulder-to-shoulder with Benny Tai and Joshua Wong.


No Major Change in Complex Sino–Indian Relations

March 22, 2017 New Eastern Outlook 

Various aspects of relations between the two Asian giants, India and China, have been gaining increasing importance recently, since one’s understanding of these is imperative for the assessment of the larger geopolitical game. It can be easily stated that this year’s events did not bring any positive change to these relations.


It curious that all sorts of bilateral official meetings are inevitably accompanied by positive public rhetoric and mutually friendly remarks, however, all of these fail to mask the ever widening divide between the two states.

For example, the Xinhua news agency’s recent message about the latest “strategic dialogue” meeting that was held by the two states last month, lacks any sorts of substance, by announcing that the parties agreed to deep cooperation in international and regional affairs.

Meanwhile, on the eve of the meeting, representatives of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs would state that the Indian side was going to raise, among other issues, such important questions as New Delhi’s prospects of joining the so-called “Committee 1267″ and “Nuclear Suppliers Group” (NSG).

The above mentioned “Committee” was formed to fulfill a number of the UN Security Council resolutions, including resolution 1267, which called on all international players to observe the sanctions regime against all entities representing ISIS (the Islamic State) and Al-Qaeda. For India, membership in this committee is of particular importance in connection with the problem of terrorism, which is being initiated from across the border with Pakistan. The latter, however, is a de facto Chinese ally, which explains the restraint that Beijing shows in discussing this particular issue.

Singapore's Total Defence Policy Provides a Regional Model

March 21, 2017 New Eastern Outlook

Singaporean Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen reiterated the importance of the city-state's policy of Total Defence. In his statement coinciding with the 75th anniversary of the British surrender of the island to Japanese forces in 1942, he spoke specifically about the 5 pillars of Total Defence.



He emphasised that Singapore cannot depend on other nations for its defence, and warned that "the strong do what they can and the weak suffer what they must."

According to Singapore's Ministry of Defence website, the 5 pillars of Total Defence include military, civil, economic, social and psychological defence. The policy specifically includes the entirety of Singaporean society as part of Total Defence. While clearly the military and other state institutions play larger roles in each of the above mentioned pillars, the policy assigns clear examples all Singaporeans can follow to contribute.

Singapore's Defence Minister and his ministry's 5 pillars reflect an often overlooked realism to geopolitics. It is realism in which "alliances" and "treaties" ultimately amount to nothing and that a nation can only depend on itself to truly ensure self-preservation.

Singapore's defence policy, in turn, reflects on the global transition from American and European unipolar hegemony, toward a more equitable balance of power within a multipolar world where national sovereignty once again holds primacy, as does a nation's responsibility to uphold its own sovereignty.