Iran’s Rouhani calls US the ‘supporter of terrorism’ in the Middle East and downplays role in Saudi oil attacks

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 27, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Iran, Middle Orient

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani called the United States the “supporter of terrorism” in the Middle East and downplayed Tehran’s role in the recent Saudi oil facility attacks in a Tuesday interview with Fox News.

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Is the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Iran’s Most Dangerous Weapon of War?

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 27, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Iran, Middle Orient

Key point: The IRGC is a fanatical and elite unit.

No other branch of the Iranian military can claim the notoriety that the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) has earned for itself over the last several decades.

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IS suspect arrested in Lebanon

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 27, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia

Lebanon’s state security arrested Tuesday a Syrian suspected of belonging to Islamic State (IS) group, the National News Agency reported.

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Senior US official says Hezbollah sanctions could hit benefactors

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 27, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

Senior United States Treasury official Marshall Billingslea has delivered a stern message to Lebanese officials during a two-day visit to Beirut, warning that those who co-operate with Hezbollah will be targeted by sanctions.

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Qatar continues to finance extremists: Al Jubeir

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 27, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia

Cairo: Qatar has continued to support terrorist and militant groups despite a pledge to stop doing this, a Saudi minister has said, amid a bitter diplomatic row between the two neighbours.

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Recep Tayyip Erdoğan proposes ‘safe zone’ for refugees in Syria

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 27, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

An expanded “safe zone” in northern Syria could include as many as 3 million people and stretch for 50 miles as far as Raqqa, the Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, proposed at the UN general assembly as he pressed his case to speed up the resettlement of Syrian refugees living in Turkey.

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New Report to Congress Warns Against Syria Pullout

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 27, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

A panel of former national security officials and other experts is calling for the White House and lawmakers to “halt the U.S. military withdrawal” from Syria or face potentially dire consequences.

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U.S. exit from Syria could bolster ISIS threat, strengthen Iran, bipartisan report says

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 27, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

A bipartisan report Tuesday urged the Trump administration to halt a planned troop drawdown from Syria and to step up diplomatic efforts to counter Iran’s influence and stave off a resurgence of the Islamic State militant group.

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Israel Blames Iran for Explosives-laden Drone Captured by Syria Near Israeli Border

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 27, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

An explosives-laden drone captured by Syrian authorities was not Israeli and was likely Iranian, the Israeli military’s Arabic-language spokesman said Saturday.

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Nasrallah warns Iran will ‘destroy’ Saudi Arabia if it attacks

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 27, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Iran

Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah warned Saudi Arabia Friday that Iran would destroy it if it started a war in the region.

“Don’t gamble on a war with Iran,” the terror group’s leader said in a speech broadcast on Lebanon’s Al-Manar television. “It will destroy you. Your house is made of glass as is your economy.”

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The Urgent Search for a Cyber Silver Bullet Against Iran

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 27, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia

As the United States weighs possible cyberattacks against Iran, it is looking for options that would deter Tehran from further strikes but avoid creating more conflict in the region.

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U.S. hoping its security gamble with Turkey in Syria will pay off

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 27, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient, Turkey

Two months after Ankara threatened to launch an operation into northern Syria, where US forces are present, the US and Turkey seem to be working closely on a “security mechanism” that supposedly seeks to fulfill Turkey’s concerns about Syria.

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Bus Bomb Kills 12 Iraqis Near Major Pilgrimage Site

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 27, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

The Islamic State claimed responsibility on Saturday for the bombing of a minibus that killed 12 people near the entrance to a major Iraqi pilgrimage center.

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Operation Cobra Warrior: Israeli F-15s Join RAF for First Ever Joint Drills on British Soil

Author : Mircea Birca | Tuesday, September 24, 2019

The Israeli and British fighter jets conducted military exercise together over the eastern Mediterranean several months ago, and the drills also involved the US Air Force at the time.

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Treasury Sanctions Iran’s Central Bank and National Development Fund

Author : Mircea Birca | Tuesday, September 24, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Iran, Middle Orient

Action targets major sources of funding for the regime’s proxies and terrorist arms, including the IRGC, the Qods Force, Hizballah and the Houthis

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Report: Drones Attacked Ammunition Facilities of Iran-backed Militia on Iraq-Syria Border

Author : Mircea Birca | Tuesday, September 24, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

Five people were killed and nine more were wounded in the attack that targeted the Popular Mobilization Forces, Sky News Arabic reported.

Drones attacked a company of Iranian-backed Popular Mobilization Forces fighters Wednesday evening in Syria near the border with Iraq, Iraqi sources reported.

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Trump orders new Iran sanctions after Saudi attack

Author : Mircea Birca | Tuesday, September 24, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Iran, Middle Orient

President Trump announced that he’s ordered new sanctions on Iran, following an attack on Saudi Arabian oil facilities.

While Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has directly blamed Iran for the attack — which forced state-owned Saudi Aramco to halve its production — Trump has stopped short, saying he wanted to wait for a final intelligence report.

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Iraqi security forces seize ISIS hideout, arrest terrorist in Kirkuk

Author : Mircea Birca | Tuesday, September 24, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

Iraqi Ministry of Interior announced on Wednesday apprehending a hideout belonging to the Islamic State group, south of Kirkuk, while arrested a terrorist who was hiding inside the hideout, and found detonators and explosive devices inside the hideout.

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US says attack on Saudi oil site was an Iranian ‘act of war’

Author : Mircea Birca | Tuesday, September 24, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Wednesday called the attack on Saudi Arabia’s oil installations an “act of war” against the kingdom by Iran, as the Saudis displayed missile and drone wreckage and cited other evidence they said shows the raid was “unquestionably sponsored by Iran.”

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France: Macron Sides with Iran’s Mullahs

Author : Mircea Birca | Tuesday, September 24, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, South East Asia

On September 14, just a few days after former National Security Advisor Ambassador John R. Bolton was comfortably disappeared from the administration, Iran inflicted major damage on a massive oil processing facility in Saudi Arabia.

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Saudi Arabia Says Drones, Missiles Used In Oil Attack ‘Sponsored By Iran’

Author : Mircea Birca | Tuesday, September 24, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

Saudi Arabia has displayed drone and missile debris that it said showed a weekend attack targeting the kingdom’s crucial oil industry was “unquestionably sponsored by Iran.”

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Trump: ‘Many Options’ to Respond to Iranian Attacks on Saudi Oil Fields

Author : Mircea Birca | Tuesday, September 24, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia

President Donald Trump said Wednesday the U.S. has “many options” in addition to military strikes to respond to Iran’s missile and drone attacks that knocked out half of Saudi Arabia’s oil production last weekend.

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U.S. General: NATO’s Advantage Over Russia Has ‘Eroded’

Author : Mircea Birca | Tuesday, September 24, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia

Amid a resurgent Russia and violent extremism growing in parts of Asia, Africa, and the Middle East, NATO must ensure that every decision it makes now and in the future is strategy-driven, U.S. General Joseph Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has said.

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Tokyo’s Refitted Aircraft Carriers Will Fly USMC F-35Bs Before Japan Gets Jet

Author : Mircea Birca | Tuesday, September 24, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia News

When Japan’s two Izumo-class ships complete their retrofit and become proper aircraft carriers, they’ll fly US Marine Corps F-35Bs before getting Japanese versions of the advanced jet.

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Turkey says three million could return to safe zone in Syria

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 20, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient, Turkey

urkey’s president has said that up to three million Syrian refugees could return to their country to live in a “safe zone” in the north.

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Iraq launches anti-ISIS operation near Saudi border

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 20, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

Iraq’s Joint Operations Command announced on early Monday the start of a military operation to “dry up the sources of terrorism” in the desert areas between the provinces of Anbar and Najaf along the Saudi Arabian border.

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Trump Says Iran Appears Responsible for Saudi Attack but That He Wants to Avoid War

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 20, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia

President Trump said Monday that Iran appeared to have been responsible for the weekend attack on Saudi Arabian oil facilities. But he also said he would “like to avoid” a military conflict with Tehran, emphasized his interest in diplomacy and played down the attack’s jolt to the global oil market.

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Syrian gov. threatens US-backed SDF, calls them ‘terrorists’

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 20, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

The Syrian Foreign Ministry on Sunday described the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) as “separatist terrorist” forces and asserted Damascus is determined “to reclaim every inch of Syrian territory.”

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Airstrike Targets Iran-backed Militias Near Iraq-Syria Border, Media Reports Say

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 20, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia

Iraqi channel attributes strike to Israel ■ Reports come a week after a deadly strike on militias in Syria that a Syrian official blamed on Israel.

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US Service Member Killed in Action in Afghanistan

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 20, 2019
Posted in category Afghanistan, Eurasia, South East Asia

A U.S. service member was killed in action in Afghanistan on Monday, NATO said, without providing further details.

Last week, President Donald Trump abruptly called off talks with the Taliban to end American’s longest war, citing the killing of a U.S. service member in a Taliban attack days earlier.

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Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi praises the Islamic State’s global operations

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 20, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia

Undeterred by the loss of his territorial caliphate in Iraq and Syria, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi preaches patience in a newly released audio message.

Baghdadi’s message was released online yesterday via various social media sites. The production was recorded and distributed by Al Furqan Establishment for Media Production, which has long served as the propaganda arm for the Islamic State’s central leadership. The Islamic State’s chief last addressed the public in a video released in late April. Baghdadi returns to some of the same themes in his latest audio address.

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Russia Has Found Aircraft to Succeed 5th Gen Su-57 Stealth Fighter

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 20, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia

Under development since 2012, the 20+ tonne stealthy flying wing design began rigorous military testing earlier this year.

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India Successfully Tests its Air-to-Air Missile Astra From Su-30MKI

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 20, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, India, South East Asia

India launched the project to develop Beyond Visual Range Air-to-Air Astra missiles in 2004, at a budget of Rs. 995 crores (approximately $138.4 million).

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Explainer: Was Iran Behind Attacks On Saudi Oil Installations?

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 20, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia, Iran

Suspected drone attacks on key oil installations in Saudi Arabia have rattled world energy markets, spiked regional tensions, and provoked threats of military action by the United States.

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Experts: Saudi Arabia’s Sophisticated Defense Vulnerable to Drone Strikes

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, September 20, 2019
Posted in category Eurasia

The recent attacks on Saudi Arabia’s crude oil hub at the Abqaiq and Khurais production facilities reveal that even a nation with a sophisticated military and a massive defense budget is still vulnerable to drone strikes.

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