Conflict in the Congo: Geopolitics of Plunder

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By Nile Bowie via Tony Cartalucci, Land Destroyer

(excerpt from Nile Bowie’s Congo’s M23 conflict: Rebellion or Resource War?) – It must be recognized that Kagame controls a vastly wealthy and mineral-rich area of eastern Congo – an area that has long been integrated into Rwanda’s economy – with total complicity from the United States. As Washington prepares to escalate its military presence throughout the African continent with AFRICOM, the United States Africa Command, what long-term objectives does Uncle Sam have in the Congo, considered the world’s most resource-rich nation? Washington is crusading against China’s export restrictions on minerals that are crucial components in the production of consumer electronics such as flat-screen televisions, smart phones, laptop batteries, and a host of other products. The US sees these Chinese export policies as a means of Beijing attempting to monopolize the mineral and rare earth market.

In a 2010 white paper entitled “Critical Raw Materials for the EU,” the European Commission cites the immediate need for reserve supplies of tantalum, cobalt, niobium, and tungsten among others; the US Department of Energy 2010 white paper “Critical Mineral Strategy” also acknowledged the strategic importance of these key components. In 1980, Pentagon documents acknowledged shortages of cobalt, titanium, chromium, tantalum, beryllium, and nickel. The US Congressional Budget Office’s 1982 report “Cobalt: Policy Options for a Strategic Mineral” notes that cobalt alloys are critical to the aerospace and weapons industries and that 64 per cent of the world’s cobalt reserves lay in the Katanga Copper Belt, running from southeastern Congo into northern Zambia.

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White House, Pentagon at odds over meddling in Mali: Panetta in Complète disarray

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PressTV

The White House and Pentagon officials are reportedly at loggerheads over the prospect of an imminent US military intervention in Mali.

Citing unnamed US officials, The Los Angeles Times reported on Friday that there is a sharp debate between the White House and the US Defense Department over whether the militants in northern Mali constitute enough of a threat to necessitate a military action.

Top Pentagon officials warn that unless Washington embarks on aggressive measures, Mali could turn into an Afghanistan-style safe haven for extremist groups

However, top White House aides dispute Pentagon’s contention that the militants in Mali could pose future challenges against the US.

The White House aides reportedly express concern that any conflict with an elusive enemy in Mali could drag US into an Afghan-like quagmire.

“The question we all need to ask is, what threat do they pose to the US homeland? The answer so far has been none,” an administration official said.

France and several African countries have sent troops to the West African country under the pretext of halting the advance of the militants who have been occupying northern Mali since April.

The Malian Army has announced progress in blocking the rebels’ advance beyond their stronghold in the north, but the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees remains skeptical the conflict would come to an end any time soon.

Chaos broke out in Mali after President Amadou Toumani Toure was toppled in a military coup on March 22, 2012. The coup leaders said they mounted the coup in response to the government’s inability to contain the Tuareg rebellion in the north of the country, which had been going on for two months.

However, in the wake of the coup d’état, the Tuareg rebels took control of the entire northern desert region. later, Ansar Dine militants pushed rebels aside and took control of the region, which is larger than France or Texas.

ASH/AZ/MA

N Syria learns to hate FSA occupation, NATO errs to add new front : MALI

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Members of the terrorist Free Syrian Army (file photo)

By Dr Webster Griffin TARPLEY for PressTV

When the history of the NATO destabilization in Syria finally comes to be compiled, this past week may be regarded as the turning of the tide against the foreign death squads and in favor of the Assad government.

On the one hand, official Washington – the principal sponsor of the foreign fighters – has been deeply shaken by reports coming from circles close to the “Free Syrian Army” (FSA) which depict a rising wave of hatred in northern Syria against the catastrophic misrule experienced under the death squad occupation there.

Ordinary Syrians of all backgrounds are increasingly disgusted by the corruption, incompetence, and oppression of the FSA regime. The rebel chaos is contributing to a significant increase in the popularity of Assad and his regime, which had guaranteed stability and freedom from the worst privations for decades.

On the other hand, NATO commanders have committed, what may turn out to be, a fatal strategic blunder by opening a new fighting front against Algeria and Mali – sending Libyan-based death squads to take hostages at the In Amenas natural gas facility, shortly after France had dispatched troops to northern Mali to confront the advancing Tuareg — before they had succeeded in finishing off Assad.

In this, the NATO bigwigs are repeating the same mistake made by Hitler in June 1941 when he launched his Barbarossa attack on the USSR before he had achieved the decisive elimination of the British. The result became an unwinnable two front war which doomed the Nazi dictator.

Who is out of touch with reality – Assad or Obama?

The imperialist think tanks of Washington had been optimistic during the late autumn and early winter of 2012-2013 that the collapse of the Assad government would occur in short order. They were taken aback in early January by Assad’s defiant and self-confident New Year’s speech to his supporters. With her usual snide cynicism, the State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland hissed that Assad was “out of touch with reality.”

This week The Washington Post was forced to quote an expatriate Syrian journalist’s remark that “many Syrians wonder whether it isn’t the United States and its allies who are out of touch….” (Liz Sly, “Assad still confident that he can control Syria,” The Washington Post, January 12, 2013)

Then came the shocking reports that the rebel-held areas, far from becoming a paradise of freedom and democracy under FSA rule, were exhibiting the grim features of a “failed state.” As David Ignatius, a veteran speaking tube for the State Department and the intelligence community wrote on January 13, “this stark analysis is contained in an intelligence report provided to the State Department last week by Syrian sources working with the Free Syrian Army (FSA). Describing the situation in the area from Aleppo to the Turkish border, where Assad’s army has largely disappeared, the report draws a picture of disorganized fighters, greedy arms peddlers and profiteering warlords.” (David Ignatius, “Anarchy in Syria,” The Washington Post, January 13, 2013)

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Neo-Imperialists Grind Away at Syrian Sovereignty

Recolonization of Syria 20 years in the making.

editorial By Tony Cartalucci, Land Destroyer Report

April 24, 2012 – Western corporate-financiers have plotted since at least 1991 to overturn not only Syria’s government, but to topple and co-opt the governments of every nation previously in the Soviet sphere of influence. US Army General Wesley Clark made it known during a 2007 speech given to the Commonwealth Club of California, that in 1991, then Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Paul Wolfowitz said the US had 5-10 years to clean up the old Soviet “client regimes” before the next super power rose up and challenged western hegemony.

Clark would go on to say that shortly after September 11, 2001, while at the Pentagon, a document handed down from the Office of the Secretary of Defense indicated plans to attack and destroy the governments of 7 countries; Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Somalia, Iran, Lebanon and Libya.

More recently, US State Department is on record stating that millions of dollars have been spent recruiting, training, networking, and equipping armies of “activists” from these targeted nations since at least 2008 to return home and sow the very unrest seen at the beginning of the “Arab Spring” – unrest that has served as the very foundation for the violence now plaguing Syria.

And even as the UN’s Kofi Annan disingenuously peddles his 6-point “peace plan,” the US, European Union, and their Arab League junior partners, are funding and arming the rebels to continue the fight even while attempting to hold the Syrian government accountable to the peace deal they themselves brazenly flaunt.

Never has it been so obvious that “international law” and “humanitarian concerns” are merely the latest contrived rhetorical devices, institutionalized as “the responsibility to protect,” to expand the financial, political, and tactical hegemony of today’s imperialists across the globe.

 

 Image: Brookings Institution’s Middle East Memo #21 “Assessing Options for Regime Change (.pdf),” makes no secret that the humanitarian “responsibility to protect” is but a pretext for long-planned regime change. Continue reading