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BAe & Saudi Arabian Prince Bandar bankrolling terror
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Whitehall_Bin_Men
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2013 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Getting feisty tonight

http://bcfm.org.uk/wp-content/Podcasts/20130315170001.mp3

http://bcfm.org.uk/wp-content/Podcasts/20130315180001.mp3

9/11 'mastermind' lives in Bristol & royal visits to two of the worst abusers of human rights in the world. Sri Lanka and Saudi Arabia,

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Martin Van Creveld: Let me quote General Moshe Dayan: "Israel must be like a mad dog, too dangerous to bother."
Martin Van Creveld: I'll quote Henry Kissinger: "In campaigns like this the antiterror forces lose, because they don't win, and the rebels win by not losing."
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 9:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Private Eye no 1334, 22 February - 2 March 2013
HP Sauce p.10
EUROPEAN defence giant EADS still hopes to brush off bribery allegations concerning its British subsidiary GPT Special Project Management and a £2bn Saudi government contract (Eyes passim).
Despite strong words in the Middle East earlier this month, David Cameron, like Tony Blair before him, is thought not to be too keen on upsetting British-Saudi relations by prosecuting the corruption that sustains a dubious regime and billions of pounds' worth of arms contracts.
Meanwhile, even as the Serious Fraud Office director David Green mulls the case, two Tory MPs are doing their bit for the business.
According to the register of members' interests, Oliver Colvile, MP for Plymouth Sutton and Devonport, went on a three-day, £6,000 visit to Riyadh in December paid for by the Saudi government as part of a "UK Defence Forum delegation to gain an understanding of the political and security framework as related to the Saudi government". The forum is a think-tank funded by big arms firms, including EADS. It is led by lobbyist Robin Ashby, who accompanied Colvile, and is run by his firm, Bergman PRo
Another Tory, Filton and Bradley Stoke MP Jack Lopresti, went to the kingdom at the same time, also paid for by the Saudi government. Lopresti makes no mention of the UK Defence Forum but says he went "to meet with members of the Shura Council (the Riyadh parliament's upper house), government ministers and various human rights groups".
The Eye asked Mr Lopresti if in fact he had gone with the UK Defence Forum, and for more details of the human rights groups he met on a trip funded by a Saudi government that is traditionally keener on deals than on rights. Answer came there none.
Things are looking less cosy in the US, certainly for EADS, with the FBI reportedly looking into the GPT case. A fair chunk of the offshore payments, as the Eye first revealed, went through HSBC New York branches and the arrangements might well fall within the long reach of American law enforcers, despite their thoroughly British origins - as the Eye can this week reveal (see p39).



UK SAUDI ARMS DEALS
A Very British Coup
THE dodgy multi-million pound offshore payments made by a British company involved in a £2bn arms deal with Saudi Arabia, exposed by the Eye last May, have remarkable roots back in the very earliest days of the hugely lucrative British-Saudi arms trade, we can reveal.
Details of the payments for apparently sham "bought in services" by GPT Special Project Management Ltd, a subsidiary of European defence giant EADS, are currently gathering dust in the pending tray of Serious Fraud Office director David Green but are part of a long and dishonourable trade going back half a century.
Back in 1962, when Egypt's Soviet-backed president Gamal Nasser fomented a republican coup against the royalist regime in Yemen, Saudi Arabia's south-western neighbour, leading British right-wingers urged action. They perceived a threat to Aden, then a British protectorate, to the south; but there was no official appetite for intervention in the wake of the Suez humiliation and given US support for Nasser.
Unofficially something could be done, however; and Julian Amery MP (pictured right), then a right-wing aviation minister and his friend David Stirling, the wartime founder of the SAS now itching to reassert British power, persuaded foreign secretary Alec Douglas-Home that they should set up a covert, deniable, operation.

Awash with petro-dollars
Soon Stirling had assembled a group of ex¬ SAS men to marshal Yemen's poorly organised royalist forces, all funded by a rich but weakly armed Saudi regime feeling threatened by Nasser's encroachment next door. The British Field Liaison Force (BFLF) as it became, achieved some mutually beneficial military success, arguably keeping Nasser's forces out of Saudi Arabia until a deal for the supply of Lightning jets that effectively became the Saudi air force, negotiated by Stirling and legendary fixer Geoffrey Edwards, came off in 1965.
Duff Hart-Davis, author of The War That Never Was, reports the mercenaries' commander Jim Johnson explaining: "Big David [Stirling] and Geoffrey Edwards had gone quite a way down the line with Tourist [codename for Saudi defence minister Prince Sultan]. Tourist would sign their enormous deal if we could guarantee to hold everything together long enough for them to get their bits here." The Yemen operation, in other words, was good both for business and the Saudi royals who would prove such generous customers in the coming decades.
Although the dogs of war felt betrayed when the British government withdrew from Aden, Stirling and Edwards managed to persuade defence secretary Denis Healey of the merits of lucrative "govemment-to-govemment" deals with the Saudis for equipment, training and maintenance that would be run by ex-SAS men. One BFLF veteran, Bernard Mills, would tell filmmaker Adam Curtis in 1999: "We had already shown in Yemen and other things that we had the capability of doing it."
A series of major contracts followed, ballooning in value after the 1974 oil price hike left Saudi Arabia awash with petro-dollars.
Among the biggest was a £400m deal (more than £2bn in today's money) concluded in 1978 for a new communications network for the Saudi Arabian National Guard, the 30,000-strong personal army of Prince Abdullah, now the country's 88-year-old king.
The "SANGCOM" deal, signed by the Ministry of Defence as a government-to-government contract with the Saudis using Cable & Wireless as "prime contractor", would transform Abdullah's Guard into a rapid reaction force that could quell any uprising and keep the oil flowing.

Sins of commission
The contract was won, according to a Times report at the time, "against exceptionally fierce foreign competition, especially from the US". And, as the British government accepted by this stage, winning and retaining such contracts required ample "commissions" for Saudi sheikhs and officials.
It was into this rich new world that two obscure outfits had recently stepped, although their names would only become known decades later when the project manager on the latest phase of the SANGCOM project, now operated by GPT Special Project Management Ltd, blew the whistle on millions of pounds in payments to them.
On 23 October 1975 Simec International, a Liechtenstein "anstalt" foundation, was created and a moribund British company within the London merchant banking group Antony Gibbs & Sons changed its name to Duranton Ltd, taking on a new role as "agents, advisers and consultants, in particular to persons and institutions interested in trade between Europe and the Middle East". The timing was telling: a later MoD memo reveals that in the same month Cable & Wireless's "detailed proposals, prepared by them and approved by MOD(PE) ['procurement executive'] were submitted to the National Guard in October 1975".
Simec was established by two Brits. One was Bryan Somerfield, a former "political officer", aka an MI6 intelligence officer, in Aden, who had gone on to use his local knowledge as an agent for, among others, Marconi. British embassy papers from around the time, unearthed by author Nicholas Gilbey, record officials remarking how Somerfield "had found the right connections for doing business with the National Guard" and "had a special pull with the Royal family". His partner in the venture would be a bright young engineer, Peter Austin, who hailed from Marconi's home town of Chelmsford and was now working for the company in Beirut.

A domestic affair
According to Liechtenstein papers filed by Simec, obtained by the Eye, both operated out of addresses in Lebanon, the former's listed simply as "Haus Somerfield" in the town of Shemlan, home to the Middle East Centre for Arabic Studies (a well known "spy school" until the Lebanese civil war forced its closure), the latter's an apartment block in downtown Beirut.
Duranton was a more domestic affair, set up within the London banking group that since 1973 had been run by Sir Philip de Zulueta, a former private secretary to successive prime ministers Eden, Macmillan and Douglas-Home. He also sat on the London committee of the Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC) and was a director of its subsidiary, the British Bank of the Middle East, which could explain why, right until 2010, payments to Duranton and Simec flowed through HSBC accounts in London and New York.
When Stirling's Yemen venture had been approved by Macmillan back in 1962, de Zulueta had been a hawkish confidant keen on confronting Nasser. Now his bank, Antony Gibbs, was funding hundreds of thousands of pounds (several millions in current prices) in fees and expenses in seeking out contracts for anything from financial services to private hospital building in the Middle East. By the end of 1978 Duranton Ltd was in hoc to the tune of £375,000, or £2.2m at today's prices, to other Antony Gibbs companies.

Gizzard job
The set-up certainly exploited the Saudi influence garnered by the SAS men in the early 1960s. Bernard Mills (pictured below), one of the key commanders back in the Yemeni mountains and a co-founder with Stirling of infamous 1960s mercenary group Watchguard, joined the Duranton board. An Arabic speaker, he became the firm's roving representative before leaving the company in 1979, during which time, he says, Duranton was not yet involved in the SANGCOM project.
Thirty-five years on and now 80 years old, Mills showed that you can take the man out of the special forces, but not the special forces out of the man, concluding a call from the Eye shack: "I don't want to see my name appearing, thank you very much, in Private Eye... Otherwise I shall come down and probably slit your gizzard. Not sure where a gizzard is, but it sounds not the sort of thing you would like to have slit."
In 1980, when the Antony Gibbs group was bought up by the Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation, Duranton was sold to Simec, the Liechtenstein anstalt run by Somerfield and Austin and channelled millions of pounds in commissions until 1984, following which a similar role was played by companies bearing the Duranton name first in Ireland, then in Switzerland.
By this stage, with Somerfield retired, Austin was top dog, running the Simec and Duranton network from his own private island, Little Whale Cay, in the Bahamas (see Eye 1329), from which, now aged 70, he apparently continues to operate.
The SANGCOM contract itself rolled profitably on under several new phases over the decades. In 1994 Cable & Wireless dropped out as prime contractor and was succeeded by GPT, a joint venture between GEC and Plessey which was taken over by European conglomerate EADS in 2007. Then in February 2010, a further £2bn extension was quietly handed to GPT without any competition.

Ethics man
The most startling feature of the case is that the payments by GPT to what are now Cayman ¬registered Duranton and Simec companies created in 1982, continued long after the explosive BAe/Al Yamamah scandal. GPT paid £14m to them between 2007 and 2010, the payments approved in Riyadh by a Ministry of Defence team that, the Eye's revelations show, must have known what lay behind Simec and Duranton.
The dubious payments were even flagged up first by an internal GPT whistleblower, financial controller Mike Paterson, who was met with the response ITom his parent company's compliance officer that "I am prepared to accept some
corruption because I like my company better than ethics" (see Eye 1331). Then, in January 2011, a more public whistleblower, project director Lt Col Ian Foxley, took details to the Serious Fraud Office, whereupon the payments ceased.
Neither whistleblower, both intimately familiar with the SANGCOM operation, could see any purpose for the Simec and Duranton payments (or the flash cars for Saudi officials that accompanied them). The real reasons, it is now clear, are to be found somewhere in the drifting political sands of the 1960s.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 9:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Plymouth MP defends all-expenses-paid trip to Saudi Arabia
By Plymouth Herald | Monday, March 04, 2013, By KEITH ROSSITER Political Reporter
http://www.devonportpeople.co.uk/Plymouth-MP-defends-expenses-paid-tri p-Saudi/story-18313297-detail/story.html
CITY MP Oliver Colvile has defended an all expense paid trip he made to Saudi Arabia last month.
Mr Colvile, who is vice chairman of the all-party parliamentary group on the Armed Forces, visited the Middle Eastern kingdom in December. His trip was paid for by the Saudi Government.
Last year David Cameron, the Prime Minister, was criticised by human rights campaigners for selling arms to countries like Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
Mr Colvile, the Tory MP for Plymouth Sutton and Devonport, went to Saudi Arabia as part of a UK Defence Forum delegation.
He said he travelled with fellow Conservative MPs Jack Lopresti and Tobias Ellwood and a Liberal Democrat peer, Baroness Falkner of Margravine.
"We were there to try to promote defence exports," Mr Colvile told The Herald.
"As a naval town this is something that is very important for Plymouth."
Mr Colvile said he also had the opportunity to talk to the Saudi foreign minister about developments in the Middle East.
"I was keen to have a better understanding of the regional politics and the impact on our Armed Forces."
Mr Colvile said he also spoke to the Saudis about their plans to send medical students to train in Britain.
With the Government reviewing the number of UK medical students, he was "keen to make sure that Plymouth University's medical school is not damaged".
"If Saudi students come here that will help to make our medical school viable and sustainable," he said.
Mr Colvile said the Saudis were offering to pay for their students to work in the NHS as part of their training and he had passed on that information to the Health Secretary.
http://www.devonportpeople.co.uk/Plymouth-MP-defends-expenses-paid-tri p-Saudi/story-18313297-detail/story.html

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PostPosted: Wed May 08, 2013 12:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JACK LOPRESTI (reprise)
Private Eye 1338
19th April - 2nd May 2013

ANOTHER gaggle of Tory MPs has paid a friendly visit to the authoritarian Saudi Arabian government, according to the latest register of MPs' interests.
The Conservative Middle East Council (CMEC) organised a four-day, £5,700-a-head trip entirely funded by the Saudi government. CMEC leader Nicholas Soames MP took along fellow Tories Kwasi Kwarteng, Phillip Lee, Brooks Newmark and Nadhim Zahawi to meet various Saudi officials. Meetings included time with deputy premier Crown Prince Salman Bin Abdulaziz ai-Saud, who "stressed Saudi-British deep-rooted relations and keenness on enhancing them", according to Riyadh. They also showed deep rooted Tory-Saudi relations - on previous CMEC visits Saudi royals "made a special reference to Margaret Thatcher and the 'Party of Tradition"', according to CMEC.
This is the second recent Tory trip to Saudi, after four Tory MPs went on shindig with the sheikhs in December. In February Eye 1334 pointed out apparent errors in the way one of them, Filton MP Jack Lopresti, described his trip:
Lopresti's entry in the MPs' register failed to mention that it was arranged by the UK Defence Forum, an arms-industry-funded group. Lopresti also claimed to have met "various human rights groups", which seemed unlikely. Lopresti has now corrected his entry: he now acknowledges the role of the UK Defence Forum and all mention of "human rights groups" has gone.

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PostPosted: Wed May 08, 2013 12:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tory MEP Dan Hannan claims Saudis have “bought” MPs
http://liberalconspiracy.org/2013/04/05/tory-mep-dan-hannan-deletes-tw eet-on-saudi-conspiracy/

by Sunny Hundal - 8:55 am - April 5th 2013

A few days ago, this Twitter exchange took place (via @Arrest_Bankers)



What’s interesting is that Daniel Hannan MEP quickly deleted his tweet after several people asked him to name and shame.

Update: my mistake, I was told he deleted it and should have checked.

Either way, an interesting allegation. Perhaps he could elaborate on it?



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Saudi Arms Tweets
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PostPosted: Thu May 09, 2013 11:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Armourer's Faith
http://armourersfaith.wordpress.com/2012/06/04/sangcom-and-how-to-brib e-a-saudi-prince/

The arms trade, militarism and corruption
SANGCOM and how to bribe a Saudi Prince
by barnabyp

In the past few weeks substantial bribery allegations have surfaced regarding another UK/ Saudi government to government arms deals. The £2 billion SANGCOM deal between the UK and Saudi governments was intended to upgrade the communications technology used by the Saudi National Guard. The company the UK government outsourced the work to was a subsidiary of the European arms maker EADS.

It appears that the company in question, call GPT Special Project Management, paid £14.5 million, in 28 payments to two mysterious companies in the Cayman Islands. A financial officer for the company has leaked the details regarding the payments and told Exaro that the payments are “irregular” because the offshore companies are not suppliers in the contract.

Further to this the company’s former programme director Ian Foxley, a former lieutenant colonel in the British Military has also blown the whistle on the project, taking the case to the Serious Fraud Office (SFO). The case is very sensitive, the Saudi royal family (who are also the government) are prickly about in their ranks and the case would almost certainly have to involved some level of complicity by the British MoD and possible the government.

The SFO is apparently conducting a ‘preliminary investigation’ which will be closely watched after the last major investigation into corruption in UK-Saudi arms deals was shut in 2006 for reasons of “national security” after Tony Blair personally intervened in the case. Only time will tell whether the SFO and the Government back a full scale investigation into this shadowy arms deal.


Adnan Khashoggi, one of the best known and most successful fixers

With Saudi corruption back in the news it may be useful to appreciate who the key players are in bribing a Saudi. In the next few weeks I may also address the common ways in which bribes are hidden and the relationship between the Saudi National Guard and Saudi Military.

A constant factor in every deal to Saudi Arabia is that of the fixer, the intermediary between a foreign company and the buyer. A fixer is required even if the foreign company is already in situ and has contacts in the government. The Arabic term is normally a wasta[i]. The fixer’s job is to both bridge the cultural divide between the foreign business and the Saudis and more importantly to find a way to influence the decisions of the government to favour their client over their competitors. Each fixer, in order to carry out their role, will have a sponsor, usually a prince of the Royal Family, the fixer and the prince would share the profits of any commission between themselves and any other figures that might have to be appeased such as officials, military officers etc.

In order to attract clients a fixer relies on his reputation and on the power of their sponsor. It is for this reason that the most powerful and successful fixers are so successful. For example Adnan Khashoggi, who at one time styled himself as possibly the richest man in the world, was closely allied both to Prince Sultan and King Fahd and built up a record of successful contracts for numerous corporations[ii].

There is also the person Said Aburish calls a skimmer. The skimmer is the final decision maker on the deal, the person whose demands must therefore be met to gain the contract. The skimmer is most often a senior prince, possibly in the cabinet or head of a ministry, a province emir, head of a branch of the armed forces or the head of a royal commission in charge of a certain project or development scheme. The skimmer, the corrupt decision maker for the contract cannot lose and is therefore in the position where all fixers and sponsors must appease him and compete to offer the largest bribe. The leading world example of the skimmer was Prince Sultan, who as Minister for Defence and Aviation for almost fifty years and Crown Prince had a huge budget at his control, the secretive and corrupt arms trade trying to sell to him and enough power that even King Abdullah could not afford to go against him too often. Prince Sultan as both policy maker and beneficiary decided what the country needed, how the budget is to be divided and awarded the contracts himself[iii].

This is lesson one in how Saudis are bribed, with some determination by the current government and SFO we may yet discover who played these parts in the SANGCOM deal and move a step closer to showing that nobody can take part in corruption with impunity.


[i] Said Aburish, 2005, “The Rise, Corruption and Coming Fall of The House of Saud”, London: Bloomsbury Publishing p194

[ii] Ronald Kessler, 1987, “Khashoggi”, London: Corgi Books, p56

[iii] The mechanics of intermeddling and the assertion of Prince Sultan being the greatest example are put forward by Aburish in Said Aburish, 2005, “The Rise, Corruption and Coming Fall of The House of Saud”, London: Bloomsbury Publishing p195

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 10:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Battle lines drawn on private sector role in defence
Mark Leftly

Tuesday 11 June 2013

The Government has rattled the unions by pushing forward with plans to effectively privatise the body that supplies guns to the Army and battleships to the Royal Navy.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/battle-lines-drawn-on- private-sector-role-in-defence-8653018.html

In a White Paper on Monday the Defence Secretary, Philip Hammond, outlined his preferred option of bringing in a private-sector partner to help slash the cost of buying everything from missiles to radio systems.

Defence Equipment & Support (DE&S) has a budget of £14bn and Mr Hammond wants a big business to oversee the organisation and bring with it the commercial nous to help get the most bullets and combat gear for the MoD's buck.

"For decades, the MoD has been at a disadvantage in commercial negotiations, and reforming single source procurement will radically change how the MoD conducts a high proportion of its business," Mr Hammond said.

Matthew Fell, CBI director for competitive markets, said the Government needed to "strike the right balance" between competition and investment.

The move has infuriated unions, which are concerned that DE&S's 16,500 staff will lose many of their hard-earned rights. They also question whether the private sector should be at the heart of decision-making at the department that is most responsible for national security.

Bob Rollings, secretary for the defence sector at the Public and Commercial Services Union, told The Independent: "We're not impressed with this, our members are not impressed that this [defence procurement] should be left to the private sector. This poses a big risk: we've got a workforce committed to maintaining standards for the front line and we can't be certain that will still be the case with the private sector."

Mr Rollings accused Bernard Gray, the chief of defence materiel who has spearheaded the plan within government, of "refusing to engage properly" with unions.

In a study that the former journalist conducted under the previous government, Mr Gray was shocked to discover just how expensive and long it took to buy and build vital defence equipment. He believed this situation could help Britain's enemies during times of war.

His favoured reform is known as "GoCo", which is short for a government-owned, contractor-operated model. Although the Government retains ownership, most critics and even proponents view this as at least semi-privatisation.

Mr Hammond is running a parallel process to analyse the GoCo and a second, unfavoured but less controversial option of modifying the current level of private-sector involvement in procurement.

Another plan is for an independent watchdog to be established to ensure that costs are kept down on those defence contracts that can only be bid for by one party due to their sensitivity.

The GoCo has excited potential private-sector partners, such as the FTSE 100 support services group Serco and the US engineer Bechtel, and they are pouring resources into winning what would be a hugely lucrative contract.

An industry source said: "This dual process is such typical Yes, Minister. The MoD is saying 'yes, we want this huge reform' but is leaving an option open to cancel in case it turns out to be too controversial."

The overall defence budget is some £34bn, but the Treasury is squeezing departments and Mr Hammond believes that cutting procurement costs will avert a cut in troop numbers.

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 21, 2013 7:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bandar the Enabler
The Likudnik-House of Saud Axis of Terror
by PEPE ESCOBAR - NOVEMBER 20, 2013
www.counterpunch.org/2013/11/20/the-likudnik-house-of-saud-axis-of-ter ror/
The double suicide bombing targeting the Iranian embassy in Beirut – with at least 23 people killed and 170 wounded – was a de facto terror attack happening on 11/19. Numerology-wise, naturally 9/11 comes to mind; and so the case of the Washington-declared war on terror metastasizing – largely conducted by oozy forms of Saudi “intelligence”.

Yet don’t expect the “West” to condemn this as terror. Look at the headlines; it’s all normalized as “blasts” – as if children were playing with firecrackers.

Whether carried out by a hazy al-Qaeda-linked brigade or by Saudi spy chief Bandar bin Sultan’s (aka Bandar Bush’s) goons, the Beirut terror attack is essentially configured as a major, Saudi-enabled provocation. The larger Saudi agenda in Syria implies getting both Hezbollah and Iran to be pinned down inside Lebanon as well. If that happens, Israel also wins. Once again, here’s another graphic illustration of the Likudnik House of Saud in action.

Nuance also applies. Bandar Bush’s strategy, coordinated with jihadis, was to virtually beg for Hezbollah to fight inside Syria. When Hezbollah obliged, with only a few hundred fighters, the jihadis scurried away from the battlefield to implement plan B: blowing up innocent women and children in the streets of Lebanon.

While Hezbollah welcomes the fight, wherever it takes place, Tehran’s position is more cautious. It does not want to go all out against the Saudis – at least for now, with the crucial nuclear negotiation on the table in Geneva, and (still) the possibility of a Geneva II regarding Syria. Yet the House of Saud is not welcoming Geneva II anytime soon because it has absolutely nothing to propose except regime change.

On Syria, the main pillar of Bandar Bush’s strategy is to turn the previously “Free” Syrian Army into a “national army” of 30,000 or so fully weaponized hardcore fighters – mostly supplied by the “Army of Islam”, which is nothing but a cipher for the al-Qaedesque Jabhat al-Nusra. King Playstation of Jordan, also known as Abdullah, collaborates as the provider of training camps near the Syrian border. Whatever happens, one thing is certain; expect Bandar Bush’s goons to be carrying out more suicide bombings on both Lebanon and Syria.

The Zionist/Wahhabi/Salafi axis

The dodgy al-Qaeda-linked Abdullah Azzam Brigades in theory exist since 2005, placing the odd bomb here and there. One sheikh Sijareddin Zreikat tweeted responsibility for the Beirut terror attack. Curioser and curioser, the claim was “discovered” and translated into English by the Israeli disinformation website. [1]

Yet another Israeli intelligence disinformation site, DEBKAfile, claimed the terror attack was an Iran/Hezbollah false flag, based on a “Saudi warning” reaching “Western intelligence agencies, including Israel”. [2] The rationale, according to “Saudi intelligence”, was “to convince Hezbollah fighters consigned against their will to the Syrian battlefield”.

This does not even qualify as pathetic. Hezbollah is basically defending the Lebanese-Syrian border, and has only a few hundred fighters inside Syria. Moreover, no string of suicide bombings will deter Hezbollah and Tehran from regaining control of what really matters in the Syrian strategic context; the Qalamoun area.

Qalamoun, ringed by mountains, is a 50-kilometer stretch bordering the Bekaa valley in Lebanon, between Damascus and al-Nabk, and right on the absolutely critical Damascus-Homs corridor of the M5 highway. The Syrian army is on the offensive in Qalamoun. Recapturing the whole area is just a matter of time. This means controlling the northern approach to Damascus. Hezbollah is helping in the offensive out of Bekaa valley. This does not mean they will camp out in Syria afterwards.

Now for the false flag accusation. As far as real false flags are concerned, one just has to re-examine three recent international bombings that supposed victimized Israel. In India the bomb had no projectiles; it barely injured an Israeli attache. In Azerbaijan the bomb was miraculously “discovered” before it went off. And in Thailand, the bomb exploded too soon, injuring only a nearby Iranian.

Crass Israeli disinformation is unmasked when it leaps into this conclusion:

If Tehran is capable of such atrocities merely as a diversionary tactic, then perhaps Presidents Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin ought to take a really hard look at their negotiating partner across the table before signing a major deal Wednesday, Nov. 20, which leaves Iran’s nuclear program in place.

So this neatly ties up with the current Israeli hysteria about the Geneva negotiations, which also includes the umpteenth report by a News Corporation outfit, London’s Sunday Times, that Saudi Arabia will help Israel to attack Iran. [3]

It also ties up with the proverbial US shills spinning, gloating rather, that, “strategically, this de-facto Israeli alliance with the Saudis is an extraordinary opportunity for Israel”. [4]

Even such shills have to admit that the House of Saud is “blocking formation of any government in Lebanon, for example, to obstruct Iran’s ally, Hezbollah”. “Blocking” of course is a euphemism to normalize suicide bombing.

And then comes the ultimate wishful thinking disguised as “analysis”; Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu “bidding to replace the United States as military protector of the status quo”. Translation; the Likudniks dreaming of becoming the new military Mob boss of petrodollar Wahhabis.

The enablers

Bandar Bush’s strategy – weaponizing and providing cover to Salafis, jihadis and every patsy or mercenary in between – will go on unabated. After Bandar Bush convinced Washington to get rid of the Muslim Brotherhood-friendly Qataris, the Saudis are the supreme warfare go-to channel. The Bandar Bush machine has ties with virtually every jihadi outfit in the Levant.

It certainly helps that Bandar has the perfect cover; the fact that he knows and has cajoled every significant player in Washington. In the US, Bandar Bush remains a dashing hero, even eliciting fawning comparisons with Gatsby. [5] Right. And my name is actually Daisy.

Even with its own embassy attacked in Lebanon, Iran is maintaining an extremely calibrated approach. The number-one priority is the nuclear negotiations in Geneva with the partner that really matters, the US. This explains Iran blaming the Beirut terror attack on the proverbial “Zionists”, and not Saudi-enabled jihadis posing as “rebels” and part of the whole Bandar Bush nebula.

For the moment though, enough of Orwellian newspeak. What happened in Beirut was a terror attack, cheered by Israel, and fully enabled by Saudis; a graphic display by the Likudnik-House of Saud axis.

Pepe Escobar is the author of Globalistan: How the Globalized World is Dissolving into Liquid War (Nimble Books, 2007) and Red Zone Blues: a snapshot of Baghdad during the surge. His new book, just out, is Obama does Globalistan (Nimble Books, 2009). He may be reached at pepeasia@yahoo.com.

This column originally appeared on Asia Times.

Notes:

1. Al-Qaida-linked group claims responsibility for deadly Beirut attack, Ha’aretz, November 19, 2013.

2. Incredible! Beirut bombings killing 25 people were self-inflicted by Iran and Hizballah as a diversionary tactic, DEBKAfile, November 19, 2013.

3. Israel, Saudi Arabia Unite For Attack On Iran, RT, November 17, ’13.

4. The stakes of an Iranian deal, Washington Post, November 15, 2013.

5. Prince Bandar bin Sultan, Saudi Arabia’s Gatsby, Master Spy, The Daily Beast, November 16, 2013.

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TonyGosling
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2014 12:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Saudi Arabia is going down the total police state road - frightening stuff for our ALLIES. How long until we do the same??

Saudi Arabia has put into effect a controversial counterterrorism law that allows Riyadh to prosecute as a terrorist anyone who demands reform, exposes corruption or protests against the kingdom’s policies.
http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2014/02/02/348951/controversial-saudi-law -goes-into-effect/
The law, passed by the council of ministers and ratified by King Abdullah in December last year, went into effect on Saturday.
The legislation, made up of 40 clauses, states that any action that "undermines" the state or society, including calls for change of government in Riyadh, can be tried as a terrorist act. The law also gives security forces and intelligence agencies sweeping powers to raid homes and track phone calls and Internet activity.
Human rights activists have strongly criticized the measure, saying it is clearly aimed at keeping the House of Saud fully in control amid the demands for democratic reform in the country.
Abdulaziz al-Shubaily, a Saudi activist, called the law a "catastrophe."
Adam Coogle, a researcher with Human Rights Watch, said, "The new law is draconian in spirit and letter, and there is every reason to fear that the authorities will easily and eagerly use it against peaceful dissidents."
A large number of activists, clerics, judges and journalists have been jailed in Saudi Arabia for voicing their opposition to the kingdom's policies.
Over the past 10 years, Saudi Arabia has also arrested thousands of people and accused them of being involved with al-Qaeda.
Human rights activists say many of the detainees have been peaceful political activists.
Human rights groups say there are over 40,000 political prisoners in Saudi Arabia, many of them being held without trial or charges.
There have been numerous demonstrations in Saudi Arabia's Eastern Province since February 2011, with protestors calling for political reform.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 07, 2014 10:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Apologies if this has been posted before but it goes with the thread.

It's from 2008

Saudi Arabia's rulers threatened to make it easier for terrorists to attack London unless corruption investigations into their arms deals were halted, according to court documents revealed yesterday.

Previously secret files describe how investigators were told they faced "another 7/7" and the loss of "British lives on British streets" if they pressed on with their inquiries and the Saudis carried out their threat to cut off intelligence.

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2008/feb/15/bae.armstrade

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2018 7:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The manic behind arming the Syrian rebels, ISIS & bombing the hell out of innocent Yemenis just died. Hardly a whisper in the news.

UAE leaders offer condolences to Saudi King on death of Prince Bandar bin Khalid
https://www.emirates247.com/news/emirates/uae-leaders-offer-condolence s-to-saudi-king-on-death-of-prince-bandar-bin-khalid-2018-03-13-1.6667 17

Published Tuesday, March 13, 2018
President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, has sent a cable of condolences to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia on the death of Prince Bandar bin Khalid bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.

He prayed to Allah the Almighty to rest his soul in Paradise.

The Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, have also dispatched similar cables to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques.

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Martin Van Creveld: Let me quote General Moshe Dayan: "Israel must be like a mad dog, too dangerous to bother."
Martin Van Creveld: I'll quote Henry Kissinger: "In campaigns like this the antiterror forces lose, because they don't win, and the rebels win by not losing."
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Whitehall_Bin_Men
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2018 7:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry, a different prince Bandar - this is the boy

Link

http://youtube.com/watch?v=AoklqunA16s
Prince Bandar bin Sultan - Bribery and corruption?

Bribery and corruption? - What I am trying to tell you is - so what!

Exerpt from PBS documentary, House of Saud 2005

Whitehall_Bin_Men wrote:
The manic behind arming the Syrian rebels, ISIS & bombing the hell out of innocent Yemenis just died. Hardly a whisper in the news.

UAE leaders offer condolences to Saudi King on death of Prince Bandar bin Khalid
https://www.emirates247.com/news/emirates/uae-leaders-offer-condolence s-to-saudi-king-on-death-of-prince-bandar-bin-khalid-2018-03-13-1.6667 17

Published Tuesday, March 13, 2018
President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, has sent a cable of condolences to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia on the death of Prince Bandar bin Khalid bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.

He prayed to Allah the Almighty to rest his soul in Paradise.

The Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, have also dispatched similar cables to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques.

_________________
--
'Suppression of truth, human spirit and the holy chord of justice never works long-term. Something the suppressors never get.' David Southwell
http://aangirfan.blogspot.com
http://aanirfan.blogspot.com
Martin Van Creveld: Let me quote General Moshe Dayan: "Israel must be like a mad dog, too dangerous to bother."
Martin Van Creveld: I'll quote Henry Kissinger: "In campaigns like this the antiterror forces lose, because they don't win, and the rebels win by not losing."
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