Author Topic: Pan-Islamic merged mega thread  (Read 321554 times)

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Offline Colin P

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Re: Pan-Islamic merged mega thread
« Reply #750 on: October 23, 2017, 10:43:45 »
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/isis-raqqa-syria-foreign-fighters-british-french-certain-death-jihadis-a8012781.html

The forces fighting the remnants of Isis in Syria have tacit instructions on dealing with the foreigners who joined the extremist group by the thousands: kill them on the battlefield.

As they made their last stand in the northern Syrian city of Raqqa, an estimated 300 extremists holed up in and around a sports stadium and a hospital argued among themselves about whether to surrender, according to Kurdish commanders leading the forces that closed in. The final days were brutal – 75 coalition air strikes in 48 hours and a flurry of desperate Isis car bombs that were easily spotted in the sliver of devastated landscape still under militant control.

No government publicly expressed concern about the fate of its citizens who left and joined Isis fighters plotting attacks at home and abroad. In France, which has suffered repeated violence claimed by Isis – including the November 2015 attacks in Paris – defence minister Florence Parly was among the few to say it aloud.

“If the jihadis perish in this fight, I would say that’s for the best,” she told Europe 1 radio last week. (rest on link)

Offline jollyjacktar

    Looking forward to Christmas leave.

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Re: Pan-Islamic merged mega thread
« Reply #751 on: October 23, 2017, 10:50:15 »
I couldn't agree more with this COA.  Once eliminated, they'll never pose a threat to anyone again.
I'm just like the CAF, I seem to have retention issues.

Offline Colin P

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Re: Pan-Islamic merged mega thread
« Reply #752 on: October 26, 2017, 16:43:00 »
Just being culturally sensitive to their needs to meet virgins.

Offline MCG

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Re: Pan-Islamic merged mega thread
« Reply #753 on: November 08, 2017, 21:21:39 »
http://ipolitics.ca/2017/11/08/saudi-arabia-just-cleared-decks-war-iran/

Some interesting observations and tea-leaf reading on the current goings on in Saudi Arabia and the implications for the broader Middle East.

Offline jollyjacktar

    Looking forward to Christmas leave.

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Re: Pan-Islamic merged mega thread
« Reply #754 on: November 08, 2017, 22:08:32 »
As long as he's kicking the crap out of the Wahabbi assholes, l like it.
I'm just like the CAF, I seem to have retention issues.

Offline Chris Pook

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Re: Pan-Islamic merged mega thread
« Reply #755 on: November 09, 2017, 12:45:48 »
More on Saudi Arabia

Quote
How Britain fell for Saudi Arabia’s reforming Crown Prince

Mohammad bin Salman is just 32, and already he is redefining the kingdom for a new generation
Fraser Nelson

11 November 2017
9:00 AM

There are two ways of seeing the extraordinary rise of Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince: the blood-stained debut of a new dictator, or the long-overdue emergence of a reformer with the steel to take on the kingdom’s old guard. The British government is firmly in the second camp.

Mohammad bin Salman is just 32 years old, and his effective seizure of power means he defines the kingdom for a generation. He’s seen in Whitehall as a history maker, whose ruthless impatience might not only liberalise his country but create an alliance with Israel that could change the region.

Minsters talk about MbS (as he’s known in Whitehall) with admiration and awe. He recently laid on a trade fair, and the British delegation was amazed to hear a band playing upon arrival at the airport. They were then taken to a room where men were sitting next to unveiled women, with none of the usual intermission for prayers. ‘It was like we’d got off at the wrong country,’ says one official. MbS is talking about various investments: new cities built from scratch, a 30-mile bridge being built to the Egyptian resort of Sharm El Sheikh. Deepening alliances with several countries, Israel included. There is even hope, in Britain, that the Saudi-Israeli alliance could pave the way for an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal.

Dictators quite often make such noises to extract concessions from a gullible West. When Colonel Gaddafi disposed of chemical weapons that no one knew he had, Tony Blair flew off to Tripoli with businessmen offering trade, cash and military training. Gaddafi’s son Saif was hailed as a young leader at Davos. Libya carried on imprisoning and torturing opponents, and found out that the West doesn’t mind if you talk about reform.

But the calculation in Britain is that MbS is different. It’s thought that he’s motivated by consolidating his personal power and by economic concerns. The oil money is running out, and Saudi Arabia needs new sources of income. MbS has been heavily influenced by Mohammed bin Zayed, the 56-year-old Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, who has acted as his mentor. He has shown how quickly an economy can develop if the reforms are right.

So far, the Saudi Crown Prince has been defined by action rather than words. Women will be able to drive in June next year, a huge challenge to the clerical establishment. The religious police, who made sure men and women didn’t mix, are no more. The sexes are beginning to drink coffee, jog and ride bikes together. Cinemas are expected to open next year. Just as the Wahhabis sought to rule the kingdom by controlling the culture, so Mohammed bin Salman is making his reign felt by culture — turning Saudi Arabia into Salman’s Arabia.

To the British, it all makes sense. As one senior official puts it, ‘He’s pro-women, so he’ll have half the population on his side.’ Perhaps more: he’s a millennial, and likes to point out that 70 per cent of his fellow Saudis are under 30 years old. ‘So we will not waste 30 years of our lives dealing with extremist ideas,’ he said last week, ‘we will destroy them today.’ This is not the language of accommodation. And it’s almost inviting an Islamist backlash, in the nation that produced most of the 9/11 hijackers.

The Crown Prince is frank about the risks, saying his country’s youth bulge is a ‘double-edged sword’. Young Saudis, he said, can create a new Saudi Arabia if empowered ‘but if they go the other way, they will bring destruction’. By his own admission, it’s quite a gamble. But one which the British government, such as it is, fully supports.

https://www.spectator.co.uk/2017/11/how-britain-fell-for-saudi-arabias-reforming-crown-prince/

And for comparison - this article on Sultan Qaboos in Oman.

https://www.chris-kutschera.com/A/Oman%201970.htm

"Wyrd bið ful aræd"

Offline Thucydides

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Re: Pan-Islamic merged mega thread
« Reply #756 on: November 10, 2017, 21:42:50 »
The Iranian=Saudi war continues to heat up:

https://strategypage.com/on_point/20171107221459.aspx

Quote
The Saudi Arabia-Iran War Escalates
by Austin Bay
November 7, 2017

On November 4, a U.S.-made Patriot missile intercepted an Iranian-manufactured Burkan H-2 short-range ballistic missile as its warhead plunged toward the international airport outside Riyadh, Saudi Arabia's capital.

Though the missile was launched from Yemen, with good reason Saudi leaders called the attack an act of "aggression" by Iran. A human rights organization said the "indiscriminate" missile attack was "an apparent war crime."

Under any circumstances, the missile attack signals that war between the Sunni Muslim kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Iran's Shia Islamic revolutionary regime is escalating and their proxy war in Yemen will become more intense.

Iran covets Saudi oil fields, but this fight is not all about oil. Historical enmity is a factor. Both governments confront serious domestic challenges that create internal instability. Iran apparently believes that at this moment in time it is positioned to exploit Saudi domestic weaknesses -- but that remains to be seen.

Since the fall of the Shah of Iran in 1979, Iran and Saudi Arabia have confronted each other across the waters of the Persian Gulf. The presence of the U.S. naval forces in the region still deter overt Iranian military action in the Gulf.

Iran's Shia regime, however, is expansionist. The ayatollahs seek to control or influence Shia Muslim communities globally, but particularly in the Middle East.

The Iranian regime concluded that the 2011 Arab Spring revolts and the U.S. military withdrawal from Iraq in December 2011 created a regional power vacuum. For different reasons and in differing guises Iranian involvement in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Lebanon expanded, but it expanded nonetheless.

Yemen was the launch site for the November 4 SRBM because Saudi Arabia and Iran fight a "proxy war" in that miserable land.

Arab Spring chaos in Yemen presented Iran with a target of opportunity. In 2011 a revolt forced Yemen's president Ali Abdullah Saleh to cede power in early 2012. Vice-president Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi replaced him. In 2014, Houthi militants seized the capital, Sanaa. In 2015, they dismissed Hadi and took over Yemen's government.

The Houthis are a political-religious movement led by the Shia Muslim Zaidi sect. Though the movement has Sunni followers and does not theologically align with Tehran's zealots, Shia Iran began providing the Houthis with weapons, advisers and intelligence. Houthi power within Yemen increased.

If the Houthis dominate Yemen, Iran is on Saudi Arabia's strategic rear, positioned to destabilize the House of Saud along a land frontier. The Saudis could not permit that. With the aid of the U.S., the Saudis formed a coalition to support the internationally recognized Hadi government.

So far the proxy war has killed some 9,000 Yemenis and inured 60,000. 18 million displaced people need food and medical assistance. Yemen's total population is 28.5 million.

The Saudis conduct air strikes on Houthi targets, which is why the Houthis portray the SRBM attacks as retaliatory. The Saudis, however, are certain that the November 4 missile was fired by members of Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps and Lebanese Hezbollah, the Lebanese Shia militia that Iran trains and finances. Hezbollah also provides proxy fighters for Iran elsewhere in the region (Syria).

From Lebanon , Lebanese Hezbollah fires Iranian-provided missiles at targets in Israel. Iran denies involvement, while promising the eventual destruction of Israel. From Yemen, Iran can pull the same trick on the Saudis -- another reason the Saudis can't let Yemen become an Iranian base.

Does Saudi Arabia have the power to win a war with Iran in the Gulf? Not by itself. It has the assets to seed stir within Iran. Its anti-Iran coalition could extend the war beyond Yemen, but it would be an indecisive war. Without the participation of U.S. forces, toppling the ayatollah regime by military means is most unlikely.

However, the nuclear weapons clock is ticking. Iran remains committed to obtaining nuclear weapons. The Saudis have ballistic missiles and the cash to buy or build nukes. Moreover, they now have the support of a new American administration that says it won't permit a nuclear armed Iranian dictatorship.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline MCG

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Re: Pan-Islamic merged mega thread
« Reply #757 on: November 18, 2017, 14:50:07 »
CBC predicts the next massive pan Middle East war is soon to start.

http://www.cbc.ca/1.4407876

But somehow, Turkey gets no mention in this foreshadowing.

Offline Journeyman

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Re: Pan-Islamic merged mega thread
« Reply #758 on: November 18, 2017, 15:17:26 »
CBC predicts the next massive pan Middle East war is soon to start.

http://www.cbc.ca/1.4407876
For clarity -- not mindless nit-picking -- it's not CBC's view but just another opinion piece by Michael Coren.


Caveat Emptor
Imagine a world where people lacking the first clue about a topic refrained from posting anyway...

Offline MCG

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Re: Pan-Islamic merged mega thread
« Reply #759 on: November 18, 2017, 22:51:20 »
For clarity -- not mindless nit-picking -- it's not CBC's view but just another opinion piece by Michael Coren.
Yes, that is a more accurate statement.

and by what magical means does SA get through Syria in order to attack Lebanon?  Regardless of their collaboration I doubt very much that Israel would allow a Saudi armoured division to drive up the highway past Jerusalem on the way to the Lebanese border and I am even more certain that Damascus would file an objection or two
More proxies maybe. Or they all meet somewhere central?  Saudi Arabia & Syria fight it out inside Iraq maybe?

Offline Colin P

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Re: Pan-Islamic merged mega thread
« Reply #760 on: November 21, 2017, 14:52:14 »
If the Iraq government goes full retard on the remaining Sunni tribes along the KSA border, KSA may feel obligated to protect them, moving forces into the those tribal areas. The Anbar region is west of Baghdad bumps against Syria, Jordon and KSA and is populated by Sunni tribes.

Offline jollyjacktar

    Looking forward to Christmas leave.

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Re: Pan-Islamic merged mega thread
« Reply #761 on: November 21, 2017, 15:29:44 »
One thing that whole region isn't short of is retards.
I'm just like the CAF, I seem to have retention issues.

Offline Thucydides

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Re: Pan-Islamic merged mega thread
« Reply #762 on: November 29, 2017, 12:34:56 »
Profile of the Man who would be King:

https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/nov/28/mohammad-bin-salman-intends-to-be-a-liberalizer-bu/

Quote
The man who would be Saudi king
By Clifford D. May - - Tuesday, November 28, 2017

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Mohammad bin Salman is a young man in a hurry. When I visited Saudi Arabia back in February he was only the deputy crown prince. Nevertheless, it was he — not 81-year-old King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and not the crown prince, 58-year-old Muhammad bin Nayef — who was the talk of the town.

The 32-year old MBS, as he is known, was regarded as the brains and energy behind Vision 2030, an ambitious plan to construct, by the aforementioned date, a dynamic and diverse Saudi economy, one not dependent on extracting and exporting petroleum. To achieve that, he appeared to understand, will require significant economic, social and religious reforms.

Then, in June, King Salman suddenly decided to replace the crown prince, his nephew, with MBS, his son. Perhaps the king prefers to have a direct descendant as his heir apparent. Perhaps he thinks MBS is better equipped to navigate the stormy seas of the 21st century Middle East. Difficult to say; Saudi Arabia is not transparent.

There have been reports — rumors really — that the king plans to step down any day now. In the meantime, the new crown prince has not been idle. Last month, he announced plans to create a $500 billion independent economic zone on the Red Sea, a cosmopolitan city of the future to be governed by laws “on par with international standards.”

Change is coming to other parts of the country as well. The powers of the religious police have been curbed. Concerts are no longer forbidden. Next year, women will be permitted to drive cars. The prohibition on unrelated men and women mixing and mingling has been loosening.

MBS is promising that under his rule Saudi Arabia will follow “a moderate Islam open to the world and all religions.” As for “extremist thoughts, we will destroy them now and immediately.”

A few decades ago, he added, the kingdom became “not normal.” His meaning was clear: Following the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran, the Saudis spent billions of dollars attempting to demonstrate that they were no less committed to jihad against the West than the rulers of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Al Qaeda was one result.

Early this month, MBS ordered what’s being called a “corruption crackdown.” More than 30 princes, government ministers and senior military officers were arrested. They have not been incarcerated in a royal dungeon. They’ve been confined instead to the Ritz-Carlton Riyadh, which boasts landscaped gardens, restaurants, a “world-class spa,” a swimming pool and a bowling alley. Still, these guests of the crown prince may not be having a wonderful holiday. And checking out may be expensive.

The Saudi prosecutor has reportedly determined how much wealth each detainee has accumulated illicitly. Those who agree to turn over ill-gotten gains to the government will be allowed to go home. Those who profess their innocence can go to court instead. More than $100 billion is expected to be deposited in government coffers.

Putting the screws to the big shots is likely increasing MBS’ popularity among the young — more than 70 percent of Saudis are under 30. It also communicates that the future king’s authority is not to be challenged.

Those who say he is violating due process have a point. But MBS is pursuing modernization, which is facilitated by social liberalization. Neither should be confused with democratization. More to the point, MBS has only one overriding concern: the survival of the kingdom.

Which brings us back to Iran. In the mainstream media, you’ll see references to a Saudi-Iranian “rivalry.” That’s misleading. What’s going on in the Middle East isn’t akin to a competition between the Yankees and the Red Sox.

MBS believes Iran’s rulers pose an existential threat to Saudi Arabia and other nations in the region. With this in mind he last week told New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman: “We learned from Europe that appeasement doesn’t work.” Referring to Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, he said: “We don’t want the new Hitler in Iran to repeat what happened in Europe in the Middle East.” (Not surprisingly, this outraged Tehran’s apologists and enablers in the U.S. and Europe.)

The Saudis were dismayed by President Obama, who seemed eager to accommodate the Islamic republic’s rising hegemony, and they have embraced President Trump, who at least talks tough about the ruling mullahs. MBS also appears to be looking at Israel — which Iran’s rulers openly vow to eradicate — with new eyes.

There are those who don’t believe MBS is serious, who regard the notion of a liberalized Saudi Arabia as oxymoronic. Some may observe that prisoners of conscience who pose no threat to the throne, for example Raif Badawi, founder of Free Saudi Liberals, an online forum, has been publicly flogged and imprisoned since 2012 (and not in a luxury hotel). Releasing Mr. Badawi and other prisoners of conscience would go a long way toward proving MBS’ sincerity.

Confronting a mortal enemy on the march, cleaning up deep-rooted corruption, diversifying an extractive economy and moderating the Saudi reading of Islam — these are not modest goals and time is probably not on MBS’ side.

Should he fail, critics will say: “He was inexperienced, took too many risks and alienated too many powerful people.” On the other hand, if a generation from now Saudi Arabia is stable, prosperous and capable of deterring its enemies, MBS will be seen as a brilliant visionary and strategist. Might he then choose to transition from benevolent dictator to constitutional monarch in a democratic system of his own making? My guess is he figures he’ll cross that bridge if he’s lucky enough to come to it.

• Clifford D. May is president of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and a columnist for The Washington Times.







Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.