Beyond the Cusp

November 17, 2016

Iran Warns Trump to Obey Nuclear Deal While Breaking Deal Themselves

 

Behrouz Kamalvandi, the spokesman for Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, fired the initial salvo at Trump insisting, “We are not much concerned about the statements made by Trump’s advisers. The US president-elect Donald Trump cannot neglect the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action and it has to abide by.” This has been further backed by senior officials in Tehran who have dismissed the recent election of Donald Trump and warned his incoming administration against taking a firmer stance against the Islamic Republic’s continued military buildup. All of this bluster was thrown to cloud the air and muddy the waters in an attempt to draw the President Elect into a battle of words while they make deals with the Russians and seek deals with China in breach of the agreement themselves. Of course Iran has countered that all of their weapons systems purchases have been for a defensive force. In the meantime Iran is seeking to purchase T-90 series tanks, computer guided artillery systems and the most advanced modern fighter aircraft from Moscow and are looking to Moscow and Beijing to keep Iran armed with the most advanced weapons systems for the foreseeable future. The immediate talks with Russia are for an arms deal costing in the neighborhood of ten billion, with a ‘B’, dollars. This all comes on the heels of acknowledgement by Obama Administration sources of payment of additional tens if not hundreds of billions of dollars which the media was assured were not to be used for terror operations or weapons purchases. Apparently these purchases must be being paid for with billions of dollars other than the billions just admitted to having been sent and from the billions of dollars which accompanied the main nuclear deal or the billions of dollars from the cancelled arms deal from the Carter Administration where President Obama condoned and approved the payment of those funds from the Shah’s times plus all the interest and penalties decided as mitigation by some third party, we believe it must have been the United Nations. There have been so many separate and disparate payments to Iran in the past year that it is difficult keeping up a running tally but we figure the amount has to be approaching if not passing one trillion dollars. All that matters is that the United States is fully funding the arming of Iran making them the big bad bully of the Middle East and potentially beyond.

 

Security Council Resolution 2231 restricts Iran to purchasing solely defensive weapons; specifically it bans the sale of “battle tanks, armored combat vehicles, large-caliber artillery systems, combat aircraft, attack helicopters, and warships amongst other weapons of a similar nature. These purchases being negotiated with Russia might easily be seen as contradicting the restrictions of the United Nations Resolution but then any deal need be voted upon for approval by the Security Council where the United States could potentially use their veto power to theoretically block any such sale. Is it that we are just so untrusting and jaded by all things Iran that should such a deal pass before the Security Council in the final months of the Obama Presidency that Ambassador Powers will be instructed to simply abstain. One would hope that there would be a stoppage of such a sale to Iran but as long as the deal seeks approval before the coming Inauguration Day this January, it will probably be permitted to pass by unopposed and such will not likely draw any rebuke or even reporting by most if not all of the media. All one need do for proof is look at all the front page top of the fold coverage these arms negotiation are receiving from the paper of record, the New York Times, or any of their surrogates found in almost every major city. If you are thinking you must have missed that day, fear not, so did our intrepid reporters for these exalted journals of record. The story if being covered has thus far been buried well inside if reported upon at all. We would not have known, though we have long suspected, unless we had received a report in our e-mails from one of our sources. Of course the reality is that whether or not the Security Council approves such a sale of whether or not the United States uses their veto power, nothing is going to be heeded which comes between Russia and the cash for their bare treasury or the Iranians and their desired military equipment. We cannot even expect the delay such as was the result of opposition to the sale of the S-300 Series Anti-Aircraft Batteries replete with a stock of missiles beyond those needed to arm the system so Iran has a reserve and fully capable deployment of radar vehicles which lie at the heart of the system. The current deal claims a four year wait for delivery but one can assume the armor and artillery will be transported as soon as a deliverable number has been reached and the deal will easily span the four years with the systems initially arriving with a trickle which after two years would have become a torrent.

 

T-90 Series Main Battle Tank

T-90 Series Main Battle Tank

 

Even should the deal be reached after Inauguration Day, as noted above, there will be no means of preventing these deliveries and purchases being consummated as Iran and Russia share a border as well as the Caspian Sea such that there are various means for delivery. Even President elect Trump would not risk a war with the Russians just to prevent the early delivery of arms which is questionable under Security Council Resolution thus Iran will receive the arms as they become available and Russia will pocket ten billion dollars. The particular fighter jet the Russians are offering is the Sukhoi Su-30SM multi-role fighter jets. According to the Russian TASS news services, Viktor Ozerov, head of the defense and security committee in the Russian upper house of parliament, stated, “These negotiations are being carried out, the road has been paved. The order book, discussed today, [meets] the needs of Tehran and amounts to some ten billion dollars.” He further intimated that these deals would not be a one-time delivery, but a series of transfers over a number of years and these arms deals would respect a U.N. moratorium on Iran obtaining offensive weapons which is in place until October 2020, thus Moscow would need to seek and obtain approval from the U.N. Security Council.

 

Su-30MK Multirole Fighter Aircraft

Su-30MK Multirole Fighter Aircraft

 

This information about arms deals and the intention by Russia to maintain a level of modern warfare equipment within the Iranian military is unsurprising considering their close cooperation in keeping Bashir al-Assad not only alive but as a definite threat to regain control of much if not all of Syria as it was before the Arab Spring turned into an Arab Winter and Syria was turned into a multi-front killing fields where the major brunt of the fighting has impacted the civilians. This has led to a refugee flood into Europe and the rest of the Western World wherever these refugees could gain entry. These people fleeing the violence in Syria ended up representing at best half of the refugees with the remainder arriving from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Turkey, Nigeria, Kenya, the Horn of Africa (Somalia, Eritrea ,,,) and other impoverished and undeveloped nations within MENA (Middle East and North Africa) nations. Many of the refugees are men of fighting ages between fourteen and forty-plus fleeing the fighting in order to avoid being drafted and impressed into serving in any one of the terror armies. There have been reports that amongst the refugees is a secreted army from the Islamic State, al-Qaeda, Muslim Brotherhood, Hezballah, IRGC (Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps) and other terror entities for the purpose of organizing terror cells, training them and unleashing Jihad throughout the Western World. These infiltrators are intended to set up theaters of operations and work together and plan simultaneous strikes such that anti-terror forces will be stretched thin and thus more easily out gunned and facing threats beyond their training levels and abilities will allow their providing adequate protection for the public. Their next step will be to step up such attacks that liberties and freedoms will need to be curtailed, or at least this is what the governing bodies will tell the people. Once this starts there is no stopping these nations becoming police states run by strong leaders who will suspend normal government functions with martial law proclaimed and fascist governance arriving throughout the West. This is a large part of the call by President elect Donald Trump to stop Muslim immigration until a proper vetting process can be implemented and put in place. Despite the hysterical reporting by the mainstream media, Trump is not xenophobic nor is he anti-Muslim; he simply desires for the refugees who desire to stream into the United States are who they claim and not terrorist pawns, organizers, trainers and experts at varied skills such as bomb making. The backing of the Assad regime by Iran was problematic but with Russia opposing the terrorists supported thus far by the States there is a need for dialog and compromises to be reached and implemented. Add in Turkey and the desires of Erdogan to decimate the Kurdish people and claiming the northern half of Syria and much of Iraq including Aleppo and Mosul and Turkish troops having already entered and infiltrated both Syrian and Iraqi territories and you have the perfect storm for a Russia-NATO war as Turkey is a NATO member state and the United States is already supporting a side which is fighting against the Assad regime and its remnants of the Syrian military, Iraq, Hezballah and, most of all, Russia. This makes for a potentially dicey situation with multiple fronts which could drag the West against Russia reigniting the tensions of the Cold War.

 

The final interest which need play its hand carefully but still with finesse and some brazen boldness is Israel. The news as far as Israel is concerned has its beneficial components and its components which are to her detriment. So as to end on an upbeat theme, let’s simply get the bad news out of the way. The biggest problem is the fact that Iran has transgressed the nuclear agreement at every turn and is now prepared to buy themselves a completely modern offensive styled military force. The planned aircraft are to include Ilyushin Il-78 four-engine aerial refueling tanker from Russia along with the longer ranged Su-30SM, which already could have flown the roundtrip necessary to launch an attack on Israel and have fifteen minutes loitering time all without refueling. With refueling capability, the range of these multi-use jet fighters has become anywhere on the globe. Add the assistance in their nuclear research received from North Korea in exchange for missile technology, China in order to counterbalance the power of the United States by adding a new threat on the horizon and by Russia for similar reasons as China plus the cash-flow so needed now by the Russian economy and government and there will be no preventing the full rearming of Iran and its hegemonic designs. Israel ends up with a heavily armed foe who is currently engaged in a brutal war right on the border with Israel’s Golan Heights which overlook southwestern Syria including Damascus. Additionally, Iran arms and trains Hezballah and has in the past provided arms for Hamas in Gaza including longer ranged rockets which can reach Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. The rockets and missiles provided Hezballah are an even greater threat as there are estimated some one-hundred to hundred-fifty thousand rockets and missiles of varying ranges and payloads. The largest of these carry two thousand pound warheads and are capable of carrying a nuclear payload and can reach any point in Israel including the southern port of Eilat all from well within Lebanon. The next war initiated by Hezballah will not be a limited engagement as the past wars were fought. Because of this additional firepower capable of crippling Israel both financially and in lost souls with the second being the greater blow, Israel will be forced to counter-attack with virtually everything she has in order to prevent a second barrage from correcting for any misses thus all but guaranteeing Israel pay dearly for not mitigating this known situation. What is amazing is that there are more missiles and rockets pointed at Israel than any other nation and the count is not even close. If one were to add to the Hezballah numbers the rockets stashed in Hamas and the numbers which are hidden in the areas ruled by the Palestinian Authority plus Iran and it might be reaching a total near or higher than two hundred thousands. Being the first most targeted nation on earth is not exactly the number one rating Israel strives for, nor is it at all desirous; she is just the result of belligerence and hatreds of the nations in her neighborhood. Add modern Russian equipment for the Iranian military as well as their special IRGC troops whose responsibility is to export the Iranian revolution throughout the world, we will see increased terrorism and even revolutions in Northern Africa. Israel even gets special targeting from the IRGC which includes a special force called the “al-Quds Force” which trains exclusively to attack and take Jerusalem and hold especially the Temple Mount and Kotel denying Jews access to their holy sites in their capital city of Jerusalem. Hezballah, al-Quds Force, IRGC, Syrian open war zone, Hamas, Islamic State, Iran and now being backed, trained and armed by Russia and China all paid for by the United States with a few extra tens and hundreds of millions of dollars and the Obama Presidency still having a little over two months to go, who knows what mischief they can get into and how much of such will be placing Israel in a tighter and tighter spot which will only increase the possibility for war. History has proven that when a nation arms up and modernizes their military and triples their credible force projection, these new guns and jets and missiles and everything else possibly including as many as twenty deliverable nuclear devices and Iran just sitting on all that hardware just does not fill me with confidence in the status-quo. There have been rumors of an Israeli defensive system which will make most of rocketry and missile technology obsolete and also scores excellent kill ratios on even the finest of the latest eccentric missile trajectory technology. Let us pray that they never be required to be used and may the words of Isaiah come true in our day and in a near time and the world reach the point which truly calls the Messiah to Jerusalem where they will set things as Hashem has decided.

 

And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk in His paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. And He shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

November 13, 2016

Erdogan Declares Border War on European Union

 

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, President seemingly for life of Turkey has thrown the gauntlet down at the feet of the European Union (EU) demanding immediate action on Turkey’s demand for visa free travel throughout Europe from Turkey. With the onslaught of Islamic refugees emanating from within Turkey, it is little surprise if the EU is even the slightest bit hesitant to grant Turkey open borders with the numbers of refugees still residing in camps in Turkey. If this were the sole aggrandizement coming from President Erdogan it might be excusable, but there’s more. Erdogan has also expressed desires for Turkey to take steps, modest steps, but steps in reforming the Ottoman Caliphate. He has set his desires on incorporating Aleppo and Mosul into Turkey and expanding his borders southward taking areas of lands formerly part of Iraq and Syria and incorporating all the Kurdish lands into Turkey.

 

One might ask what would happen to the Kurds as the relations between Turkey and the Kurds has been rocky at best. This is where things begin to resemble the darker periods of Turkey’s history. The military incursion being executed currently by Turkey presumably to fight the Islamic State in Syria has been cover for their real intentions, eradication of Kurdish Peshmerga Militias and their other protective services. The actions by the Turkish military in Syria and suspected coordination in northern Iraq has been to ethnically cleanse the Kurdish areas in a similar manner as their historic Ottoman treatment of their Armenian minority population. The Armenians were a Christian minority residing in the northern areas of the Turkish Ottoman Empire who met a fate very similar to what the Yazidi faces at the hands of the Islamic State. What makes this threat to the Kurds all the more tragic is it was the Kurdish forces which rescued what Yazidi they were able to reach preventing a complete genocide of the people and now the Kurds may be facing a genocide themselves if they do not receive protection from forces capable of preventing the Turkish offensive against them. The first step would be the media and world governments actually recognizing the Turkish intentions for expanding their borders and eradicating the Kurdish peoples residing in northern Syria and Iraq. Unfortunately the Russians are fighting to save Bashir al-Assad and allied with Iran in this Syrian multi-front war and the Kurdish are not on the same team. What makes all this even stranger is the Kurds are not actually fighting Assad as much as they are simply defending their people from multiple threats. Assad and the Russians currently have no front where they are contending with the Kurds and unless they choose to fight the Kurds there would be no contention.

 

Greater Turkey

Greater Turkey

 

The Kurds have been the odd group out in the entire Syrian conflagration as their main intention has been to protect their own population from all outside forces. They have received limited assistance from any of the major powers and their main assistance came from what many might call the most unlikely of places. We will leave that for others to reveal should they so choose. Their main problem is they border a Turkey under leadership which imagines themselves the new Caliph and envision returning to their vision of a renewed Turkish Empire eventually on the grand scale which was the Ottoman Empire at its peak of power and expanse. The world is going to need to awaken and realize that there are still forces which believe they are destined by their deity to rule the world. Granted they will spend much of their time fighting one another for supremacy and once Europe has been subsumed there will be new leaders with the vision of world conquest rising from these new fronts.

 

These threats are real and need be addressed through some means by the rest of the world before such dreams become everybody’s nightmares. Today the main nations whose leaders envision world conquest are limited to Iran and Turkey but one must also figure for the Islamic State and Muslim Brotherhood who have their own plans for world conquest. The world had thought after defeating the Nazis and the fall of the Soviet Union’s empire, that world conquest as a viable concept had been defeated once and for all. Unfortunately that conclusion appears to have been premature as there remains another group who believe the world was made to be their apple to do with as they please and all must bend to their will. Until Islam has realized that their dream is everyone else’s nightmare and will eventually be recognized and their dreams of world conquest will bring ruin upon them and that their only choice will be accepting that others have rights to believe and live as they please. Until that day there is still a great threat in this world which need be remedied and the sooner the better. The first step might be the EU turning the Turkish request down cold and demand they have Visas to enter Europe; otherwise close the border. Unfortunately it will take new leadership across Europe before they will stand on principle. That can only lead to greater difficulties in the very near future. Where are the leaders for tomorrow or is there to be no tomorrow?

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

October 30, 2016

Why We Think Trump Had Said NATO is a Problem

 

Donald Trump is doing something of which very few of us will ever understand the difficulty. For people used to blurting out whatever is on their minds, damn the consequences, it becomes even rougher row to hoe. Being of a similar mold and having attempted a run for office you quickly realize that there are some truths you hold close and can never reveal as they are one of many blocks of Kryptonite. The problem arises at some point where your natural nature breaks through and you start to speak one of those truths which must not be spoken and as they start to slip your lips you recover just short of the hidden nugget within which is the real poison to your campaign, so you quickly and abruptly end your sentence as smoothly as possible. The media, the darling little devils, are a devious lot and when they smell an opening, they are like jackals on carrion tearing at the carcass of the bedeviled thought seeking that hidden nugget. When Donald Trump complained about NATO, I got the sense that his problem was not the financial costs as he maintained upon further pressure from many media types. As Trump is closer to a third party candidate where there is no Republican running, he has been pestered and hammered from both ends of the media and his rather combative nature tends to allow for more unforced, though coerced or due to carefully laid traps, misspeaks and half-speaks leading him ever further down the rabbit hole, and wonderland is the worst place for a politician to end up as there it most certainly ends with the Red Queen screaming, “Off with his head,” pointing at them. And who wants to be executed by a horde of red animated playing cards? Such has been the NATO issue and the reason is far more potentially intriguing than the answers we have been giving, not that we disagree with having those nations incapable of providing the troops required to field NATO adequately to its demands having to pay the United States for making up the difference.

 

Thinking of what else Donald Trump might have been told which could include NATO it became obvious when it leaked into our ears, well, before our eyes really, the answer to the riddle and it concerns one of our pet problems with the world, Kurdish independence. The plan is to make Syria a collection of autonomous cantons with the Syrian government responsible solely for those items which cross the borders such as main roadways, money, national defense and others. The first canton mentioned was for the Kurds in the north and northeast of Syria. This was leaked as part of a report by respected Turkish journalist Mahmut Borzarslan who gave information we received in one of our memos from American Center for Democracy concerning a plan being brought forward initially in Syria by the Russians. The initial laying out of the plan while receiving all-out support by the Kurdish representatives was roundly dismissed as pure fancy with no hope of acceptance by the Syrian government of Bashir al-Assad be their position less tenable than they may yet realize. What makes this all the more interesting is that the Kurds would be natural allies to the United States as they have proven extremely helpful in Iraq allowing American forces to concentrate on the bigger problems while they basically ruled and kept straight the entire northern third of Iraq and assisted with the pacification of Mosul. Further, the Syrian Kurds, with assistance from their Iraqi cousins, have had the greatest success against the Islamic State defending their own held areas while liberating other areas with some of the toughest fighting coming for control of the city of Kobanê, which they accomplished with some assists in the form of targeting Islamic State positions with bombings, and a remarkably few at that. The Russians will soon point out that if Bashir al-Assad desires to remain among the living and rule over anything he will need to realize two things, he can only hope to rule an Alawite Canton and only that with the second, Russian assistance and if he desires the second he will need to accept the first. This he will understand even if the Russians need ground their planes, silence their artillery and retreat their forces to hold only Latakia and protect their naval instillations there.

 

There is no means on Earth which would make this idea acceptable to President Obama as his new best friend forever and darling of the Muslim Brotherhood since the fall of Egyptian President Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood government has been Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. The removal of Morsi and his gang of undesirables proved the Egyptian people more knowledgeable than the United States President and State Department, the latter not that difficult a feat as it takes minimal common sense and does not require literacy, calling on even the military to retake power as they would be a kinder and more beneficent master. The added problem is where Donald Trump and NATO come into the picture. Turkey is a member of NATO due to their geography. They hold the southern front on Russia, formerly the Soviet Union and the reason for NATO, and control the Dardanelles, the waterway and series of straights leading from the Black Sea to the Mediterranean Sea and the world and also the Russian access to a warm water access to the Atlantic Ocean (see map below). Being a NATO member, Turkey could claim and likely verify terrorist threats against her by Kurds being aided and secluded by Syrian Kurds making a case for it being an act of war. As attacking Kurdish region of Syria would place Turkish fighter aircraft in space over Russian zones and might even draw Russian assistance to the Kurdish side as the Kurdish actions have aided Russian interests, they could demand military assistance under the NATO Charter. Should the United States enter such a conflict in even the smallest of means; one could bet the Kurds would have no alternative but to request Russian assistance even simply to provide air cover to prevent bombings as the Kurds have no air forces and likely minimal if any air defenses. Remember that Turkey has already downed a Russian fighter jet under somewhat questionable conditions and Russia is not a nation to forget such and jump at an opportunity to repay in kind and then some. This could quickly get out of hand with Russian and NATO, potentially including United States, aircraft in combat against one another. Does any rational person really want to see where such could lead?

 

From the Sevastopol Docks and Shipyards Across the Black Sea then Through the Bosphorus Strait and the Dardanelles to the Mediterranean Sea and thus the Atlantic Ocean

From the Sevastopol Docks and Shipyards
Across the Black Sea then
Through the Bosphorus Strait and the Dardanelles
to the Mediterranean Sea and thus the Atlantic Ocean

 

For this reason and numerous others, it will be best left until after the United States Presidential Elections and the late January inauguration before any serious negotiations on such a solution can have any hope to progress. This is where Hillary Clinton can claim that Putin would prefer Donald Trump as both she and dear Vlad know theirs would be a tumultuous relationship at best and adversarial at the very least. If there is to be any cooperation between the United States and Russia on Syria and a host of other areas, then Donald Trump need be the next United States President. Hillary Clinton has already made it clear that her foremost foreign policy objective will be to humble and force Putin to bow before her will from the very first moments of her reign. This is also one of the main unspoken fears, dare we say horrors, many foreign policy theorists and experts foresee. The guaranteed irritant on so many trouble spots and potential disasters would result from a continuation of an American shirking of international responsibilities. Should America continue leading from ever further behind soon to never even arrive, added to a focus on pressing only Russia and President Putin frustrating him while continuing to arm “rebels” in Syria, could lead to an ever greater set of conflicts. Add the blindness to Islamic pressures and subversions would bring much of the ensuing violence down initially upon Europe and soon thereafter on the United States as well. As learned, or not, from both world wars, the United States sitting on the sidelines refusing to lead the powers of democratic governance, freedom and liberty against the powers of darkness and human bondage; be it physical, mental, spiritual or otherwise; only prolongs the insufferable carnage and adds, nay, multiplies the numbers of combatants and innocent civilians slaughtered and can even place the final outcome in doubt as was the reality in World War II where had the Nazis broken through Stalingrad and connected to the Arabian oil fields the outcome may have been very different. Of course should Donald Trump become complacent concerning the possible designs Vladimir Putin may be considering for Eastern Europe and many of the former Warsaw Pact nations, that too could lead in a very threatening and dangerous direction. Oh the trials and tribulations of trying to run the world with so many other actors filling the stage. The solution in Syria will never resurrect the visions of Bashir al-Assad and he may become the sole obstruction to an agreement all the other groups agree with once the Islamic State has been vanquished, an inevitability no matter who wins the election. Such a position would make Assad a problem for Russia, and even worse, for Putin which would make Assad no longer desirable. That would be a very nasty place to be standing surrounded by Russian military and special agents and further, Bashir al-Assad is not unreplaceable with a new and compliant Alawite leader and there are likely quite a few just waiting for such an opportunity. Assad should remember the Arab Code, “Me against my brother; me and my brother against our father; my family against my cousins and the clan; the clan against the tribe; and the tribe against the world. And all of us against the infidel.”

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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