Syria

Syria and the drumbeat of world war

By Bill Van Auken, 8 October 2015

With its intervention in Syria, Russia has cut across US plans which date back decades to effect regime-change in Syria and redraw the map of the Middle East.

US, NATO step up threats to Russia over Syria

By Patrick Martin, 7 October 2015

A series of incidents along the Syrian-Turkish border have raised the danger of military confrontation between Russia and the US-led imperialist alliance.

Bernie Sanders backs Obama on Syria war

By Patrick Martin, 7 October 2015

The Vermont senator and presidential candidate issued a statement supporting the Obama’s policy of airstrikes against Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.

US ratchets up war rhetoric against Moscow following Turkish intercept of Russian jet

By Thomas Gaist, 6 October 2015

Responding to reports that Russian jets “locked on” to Turkish fighters, Western officials issued a round of denunciations against Russian military support for the Assad government.

Washington divided over Syrian debacle

By Patrick Martin, 5 October 2015

The Democratic and Republican parties are both split over how far to go in the imperialist intervention against the government of Bashar al-Assad, which is now reinforced by Russia.

US, allies blast Russia for attacking Al Qaeda in Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 3 October 2015

The demand that Moscow confine its airstrikes to ISIS targets amounts to a tacit defense of the Al-Nusra Front, the main fighting force against the Assad government.

Threat of wider war mounts as Russia continues airstrikes in Syria

By Barry Grey, 2 October 2015

Prominent voices within the US foreign policy and military-intelligence establishment are calling for an even more reckless US policy of escalation against both Assad and Putin.

The US-Russian clash in Syria and the threat of war

By Bill Van Auken, 1 October 2015

Moscow’s launching of air strikes in Syria is a thoroughly reactionary intervention, aimed at defending not the Syrian people, but the profit interests of Russia’s oligarchy.

Obama-Putin meeting highlights crisis of US policy in Syria

By Barry Grey, 30 September 2015

The twists and turns of US policy reflect massive contradictions in Washington’s Middle East agenda and fierce divisions within the foreign policy and military-intelligence establishment.

France launches bombing campaign in Syria

By Alex Lantier, 28 September 2015

This act of war not only intensifies the bloodshed in Syria and the misery of millions of Syrian refugees, it threatens to provoke a military conflict with Syria’s main backer, Russia.

Obama, Putin to meet at UN talks on Syria, Ukraine

By Thomas Gaist, 26 September 2015

The talks, the first since 2013, come amid signals by the Obama administration that it is open to a deal with Russia aimed at forging a transitional regime in Syria.

US, Russia discuss possible coordination, political settlement in Syria

By Thomas Gaist, 21 September 2015

Obama administration officials have signaled their willingness to accept a deal with Russia that would leave Syria’s Assad in power, at least temporarily.

Withdraw all Australian military forces from Syria and the Middle East!

By the Socialist Equality Party, 19 September 2015

The SEP condemns the government’s decision to expand its involvement in the US-led war in the Middle East by authorising air strikes in Syria.

Poll shows 81 percent of Syrians believe US created ISIS

By Bill Van Auken, 18 September 2015

Half of those surveyed oppose US airstrikes, and only 21 percent believe their lives are better now than before the Western-orchestrated civil war in Syria.

US-Russian tensions rise over Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 17 September 2015

Tensions have continued to escalate over US allegations that Russia is establishing a “forward-operating air base” outside the port city of Latakia.

German politicians and media promote military intervention in Syria

By Johannes Stern, 17 September 2015

Germany’s elite are using the refugee crisis in Europe to intensify their campaign for war.

UK National Youth Theatre cancels play on Syria after consulting police

By Tom Scripps, 17 September 2015

The cancelled production, Homegrown, explores the reasons for three London girls travelling to Syria to join ISIS.

Drumbeat grows for escalating war against Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 11 September 2015

The media and politicians in both the US and Western Europe have cynically seized upon the plight of refugees fleeing the violence in Syria as the pretext for intensifying the slaughter.

UK Prime Minister Cameron calls for “hard military force” in Syria

By Robert Stevens, 11 September 2015

The British government and its allies are now unabashed in their calls for war in Syria and the removal of Bashar Al-Assad.

Washington threatens confrontation with Russia over Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 9 September 2015

The threats to Moscow over aid to Syria underscore Washington’s overriding aim of regime-change.

Cameron government justifies targeted assassinations of UK citizens

By Robert Stevens and Julie Hyland, 9 September 2015

The attack parallels the Obama administration’s policy of extrajudicial executions and constitutes a violation of democratic rights and the rule of law.

Turkish government escalates war against Kurdish PKK

By Jean Shaoul and Halil Celik, 9 September 2015

The Turkish government has put much of southeastern Turkey under de facto martial law and is escalating its military operations against the Kurds in Turkey, Iraq and Syria.

Amid refugee crisis in Europe, NATO powers prepare war escalation in Syria

By Alex Lantier, 8 September 2015

In a nationally televised press conference, French President François Hollande called for stepped-up bombing in Syria and the ousting of Syrian President Assad.

Prime Minister Cameron confirms Royal Air Force killed two British citizens in Syria

By Robert Stevens, 8 September 2015

The government’s admission that it ordered the targeted assassination of two Britons in Syria parallels the extra-judicial murders of its own citizens by the US government.

Washington launches new drone assassination program in Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 3 September 2015

The previously secret “targeted killing” program appears to be aimed at beheading ISIS.

Mass protests against failing infrastructure shake Lebanon

By Jean Shaoul, 1 September 2015

Protests demanding the treatment of uncollected trash also express opposition to Lebanon’s endemic corruption and its sectarian system of government.

Australia called on to join illegal US military operations in Syria

By James Cogan, 22 August 2015

Australia has a long history of participating in Washington’s criminal wars in the Middle East.

Scores of refugees die brutally in the Mediterranean

By Robert Stevens, 18 August 2015

At least 49 migrants died in the hold of an overcrowded fishing boat off the coast of Libya Saturday, thought to have asphyxiated after inhaling fumes from fuel.

New York Times uses rape allegations to promote a wider war in the Middle East

By Barry Grey, 15 August 2015

Rape was not a serious problem before Washington intervened to occupy Iraq and topple Saddam Hussein, overthrow and murder Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, and ignite a sectarian civil war in Syria.

Major powers intensify diplomatic maneuvering over fate of Assad regime

By Thomas Gaist, 14 August 2015

The Russian government held negotiations this week aimed at a political settlement to end the war in Syria through installation of a transitional national unity regime.

One year of Obama’s Iraq-Syria war

By Bill Van Auken, 5 August 2015

Through all its dizzying contradictions and the mass of lies employed to sell it, the war’s only consistent features are the predatory aims and methods of US imperialism.

Over 450 civilians killed by US-led air strikes in Iraq and Syria

By Will Morrow, 5 August 2015

The real death toll is undoubtedly far higher, because the US and its allies cover up all evidence of civilian deaths.

Obama authorizes escalation of US war against Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 4 August 2015

Under the pretense of protecting a handful of US-trained mercenaries, the American president has approved air strikes against Syrian government forces.

Washington stunned by attack on US mercenaries in Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 3 August 2015

The US reaction only underscores Washington's attempts to forge an alliance with the Al Qaeda affiliate in the war for regime change.

Turkey put on a war footing

By Halil Celik and Jean Shaoul, 31 July 2015

President Erdoğan’s government has mobilised the military and police to target both the Kurdish nationalist movement and the “left” and anti-war opposition in general.

US, Turkey prepare to escalate Syrian intervention

By Bill Van Auken, 30 July 2015

The deal reached between Washington and Ankara has set the stage for a major escalation of the war for regime change against Syria.

NATO backs Turkish/US regime-change offensive in Syria

By Jean Shaoul, 29 July 2015

In exchange for a green light to attack the Kurds, Turkey has made a U-turn to join the US-led campaign of air strikes in Syria.

UK Conservatives plan war and domestic repression

By Chris Marsden, 29 July 2015

The Tories are fashioning an increasingly aggressive military policy and undertaking measures that represent a grave threat to democratic rights.

Turkey joins US war in Syria

By our Turkish correspondent, 25 July 2015

While joining the US war against ISIS, Ankara is simultaneously stepping up its offensive against Kurdish nationalist groups.

Atrocity sparks calls for Turkish intervention in Syria

By our Turkish correspondent, 22 July 2015

Dozens were killed by a suicide bomb outside a cultural center in a town on the Turkish border with Syria.

Conservative government concealed UK participation in Syria air strikes

By Julie Hyland, 18 July 2015

British pilots have carried out attacks in flagrant disregard for the August 2013 parliamentary vote against British military involvement in Syria.

UN report: Syria faces worst refugee crisis in recent history

By Thomas Gaist, 10 July 2015

One-sixth of the total Syrian population has fled the country and some 230,000 have been killed as a result of the civil war that erupted in 2011, according to the UN estimates.

Obama at the Pentagon: No end to ISIS war

By Thomas Gaist, 7 July 2015

Flanked by a phalanx of military officials and commanders, Obama outlined a perspective of endless war in Iraq, Syria and beyond.

Turkey, Jordan discuss moves to seize territory in Syria

By Thomas Gaist, 1 July 2015

Turkish and Jordanian military forces are on the brink of intervening in Syria to establish occupation zones in the northern and southern areas of the country.

Australian pseudo-lefts hail advance of US-backed Islamists in Syria

By Oliver Campbell, 27 June 2015

Socialist Alternative continues its public support for the US-led regime-change operation against the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

The US arming of ISIS

By Bill Van Auken, 3 June 2015

Underlying the massive rearmament of ISIS forces with captured US weapons are the contradictory and vastly destructive policies pursued by US imperialism.

With US air war in 10th month, ISIS advances in Iraq and Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 2 June 2015

According to one estimate, the Islamist militia now controls territory across Iraq and Syria roughly equivalent to the size of Italy.

Behind the recriminations over the fall of Ramadi

By Bill Van Auken, 28 May 2015

The US defense secretary’s charge that Iraqi forces lack the “will to fight” has evoked counter-charges that Washington has no real desire to crush ISIS.

Turkey says US agrees to provide air cover for anti-Assad “rebels” in Syria

By Niles Williamson, 26 May 2015

The provision of air cover by the US for its proxy forces on the ground in Syria would follow the pattern of the 2011 US-NATO air war in Libya.

Pentagon chief hints at shift in US policy in war with ISIS

By Patrick Martin, 25 May 2015

In an interview with CNN, Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said that the ISIS victory at Ramadi showed that Iraqi government forces did not have the “will to fight.”

Massive military escalation looms as ISIS advances in Iraq

By Niles Williamson, 22 May 2015

The logic of developments in Iraq is leading to the reintroduction of large numbers of American ground troops and a wider war in the Middle East.

US special forces stage raid into Syria

By Patrick Martin, 18 May 2015

Nothing certain is known about the circumstances or results of the attack, since the only sources of information are the Pentagon and White House.

US begins training new “rebel” army for operations in Syria

By Thomas Gaist, 9 May 2015

In preparation for expanded interventions in Syria and elsewhere, the US Defense Department will train some 15,000 militants at camps in Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Qatar.

US warplanes kill dozens of civilians in Syria

By Patrick Martin, 4 May 2015

The latest atrocity reportedly took place in the Arab village of Bir Mahali in Aleppo province.

US-Al Qaeda offensive against Syrian regime

By Patrick Martin, 29 April 2015

An alliance of anti-Assad rebels, led by the al-Nusra Front, the Syrian branch of Al Qaeda, is armed with US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

Blood on their hands: Libya’s boat refugees and “humanitarian” imperialism

By Johannes Stern and Bill Van Auken, 21 April 2015

The massive refugee death toll in the Mediterranean is a grim form of collateral damage from the imperialist wars waged in the name of “human rights.”

Journalist Richard Engel’s 2012 kidnapping account was part of drive to war with Syria

By David Walsh, 17 April 2015

NBC’s Engel claimed he was held captive by pro-Assad forces. It turns out his kidnappers were associated with the anti-Assad rebels backed by the US.

ISIS takeover of Yarmouk marks new stage in Syrian conflict

By Jean Shaoul, 13 April 2015

The takeover of the Palestinian-populated enclave is the first time ISIS has gained a foothold so near to the Syrian capital Damascus, the stronghold of President Bashar al-Assad.

UK sends military trainers to Syria

By Jean Shaoul, 6 April 2015

The aim is to create a militia capable of installing a regime in Syria that will carry out the dictates of the imperialist powers.

Australian pseudo-lefts defend Syriza’s austerity pact

By Mike Head, 13 March 2015

The January 25 election of Syriza has laid bare the evolution of these groups into open supporters of capitalist governments.

US bombs kill oil workers in Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 10 March 2015

The Pentagon claims that seven months of US air strikes have killed 8,700 “militants” in Iraq and Syria, while providing no estimate of how many civilians have died.

Amid US talks with Iran, France debates rapprochement with Syria’s Assad

By Antoine Lerougetel, 9 March 2015

The debate over how to proceed in imperialist circles testifies to the disaster unleashed in the Middle East by the NATO proxy wars against Libya and Syria.

“Jihadi John,” imperialism and ISIS

By Bill Van Auken, 28 February 2015

Not only did Britain’s security service MI5 carefully track the movements of “Jihadi John,” it carried out an active campaign to recruit him as an informant and covert agent.

Turkish troops enter northern Syria

By Patrick Martin, 23 February 2015

The two-day operation, which reportedly began Saturday and ended Sunday, was denounced as a “flagrant aggression” by Syrian officials.

Obama administration seeks blank check for perpetual war

By Joseph Kishore, 12 February 2015

The Authorization for Use of Military Force presented to Congress by the White House yesterday aims to establish a new legal framework for war throughout the Middle East and beyond.

Imperialist hypocrisy over ISIS execution

By Barry Grey, 5 February 2015

Prior to the 2003 US invasion, there was no Al Qaeda in Iraq. The organization, the forerunner of ISIS, arose on the ruins of Iraqi society at the hands of US imperialism.

Crisis talks in London over Islamic State

By Paul Mitchell, 23 January 2015

The UK/US-hosted summit in London discussed plans for stepping up military action in Iraq.

Syria strike caps Israel’s provocations in Middle East

By Chris Marsden, 21 January 2015

Israel’s air strike follows its denunciations of the International Criminal Court’s decision to launch a preliminary investigation into possible war crimes in Palestine.

US military admits civilian deaths in Mideast air war

By Thomas Gaist, 8 January 2015

US warplanes have bombed at least 3,222 targets inside Iraq and Syria and destroyed some 980 structures, an official Pentagon announcement said Wednesday.

US moves closer to direct combat with ISIS

By Patrick Martin, 3 January 2015

A former US airbase in Anbar province, where 300 US trainers and Special Forces operatives are located, is surrounded by ISIS and under continuous attack.

Reports reveal scale of destruction of Syria’s world historic heritage

By Jean Shaoul, 29 December 2014

The destruction of Syria’s patrimony means its history can never be studied and made available to future generations.

German government to send combat troops to Iraq

By Christoph Dreier, 15 December 2014

The German parliament’s imminent backing of a combat mission in Iraq marks a crucial step in the unleashing of German militarism.

Israeli bombing of Syria threatens wider war

By Bill Van Auken, 9 December 2014

The latest bombing raids took place amid fresh reports of Israeli aid to the Islamist “rebels” inside Syria.

Washington denounces Syrian air strikes on ISIS

By Peter Symonds, 28 November 2014

The US State Department’s comments are utterly cynical given the Pentagon’s indifference to civilian casualties in its new Middle East war.

Obama calls for more Australian, allied troops for Middle East war

By James Cogan, 11 November 2014

Planning is undoubtedly underway for bloody attacks to retake major Iraqi cities currently controlled by ISIS.

US steps up military operations in Iraq, Syria

By Patrick Martin, 10 November 2014

US warplanes struck along a 400-mile front from Idlib, in northwestern Syria, to Mosul in northern Iraq, and at numerous locations in western Iraq.

Top US general calls for “advisers” in Iraq combat zone

By Bill Van Auken, 1 November 2014

Gen. Dempsey’s proposal would put US troops in predominantly Sunni Anbar province, where ISIS controls roughly 80 percent of the territory.

SEP Public Meetings

Syria, Iraq and the new war in the Middle East: Causes and Consequences

27 October 2014

Once again, the US military machine has dropped bombs upon a defenseless country in the Middle East—this time Syria. As with “shock and awe” against Iraq in 2003 and the “humanitarian” war for regime-change in Libya in 2011, Washington has launched a war of aggression based upon lies.

Washington Post seizes on chemical weapons claims to press for wider war in Syria

By Niles Williamson, 25 October 2014

Two items in Friday’s Washington Post reporting chemical weapons attacks in Iraq and Syria are part of a propaganda campaign by the media to turn the operation against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria into a war to overthrow the Assad regime in Syria.

Obama administration considers sending more “advisers” to Iraq

By Bill Van Auken, 23 October 2014

Preparations are being made to substantially escalate the US military presence and participation in ground combat operations.

US boosts support for Kurdish militia in Syria

By Peter Symonds, 21 October 2014

While the PYD and its armed wing are still on the US list of terrorist organisations, Secretary of State Kerry is rebadging them as Washington’s latest “valiant” freedom fighters.

US boosts air war in Syria

By Peter Symonds, 17 October 2014

As the US seeks to consolidate its presence in Iraq and further plans for regime change in Syria, the logic of the military situation points to a further escalation of the war.

CIA warned arming Syrian “rebels” unlikely to succeed

By Bill Van Auken, 17 October 2014

The intelligence agency concluded on the basis of decades of experience that its arming of US-backed insurgents seldom proved successful.

Australia’s pseudo-left organisation complicit in US war for regime change in Syria

By Will Morrow, 17 October 2014

Socialist Alternative has yet to write a single article even acknowledging that US bombs have begun to rain down on Syria. As the old maxim states, silence is consent.

US-backed militias commit war crimes in Iraq

By Bill Van Auken, 16 October 2014

Shia militias, among the only ground forces to make advances against ISIS, have carried out a deadly campaign of sectarian violence against Sunnis.

Obama meets anti-ISIS “coalition” amid rising US-Turkish tensions

By Bill Van Auken, 15 October 2014

The meeting at Andrews Air Force Base could not mask the deepening divisions over the strategy guiding the US-led war in Iraq and Syria.

Drumbeat grows for US troops in Middle East war

By Peter Symonds, 13 October 2014

Top US general Martin Dempsey has again suggested that American military advisers will be needed in a frontline combat role.

US, Turkey at odds over Syria intervention

By Patrick Martin, 10 October 2014

Obama and Erdogan are in conflict over the methods to achieve their common goal, the overthrow of Bashar al-Assad.

The Australian Greens and their phony anti-war posturing

By Mike Head and Peter Symonds, 9 October 2014

The Greens are positioning themselves as a political lightning rod for anti-war opposition.

Turkey demands US back war to topple Syria’s Assad

By Bill Van Auken, 8 October 2014

As ISIS forces were poised to take the Syrian border town of Kobani, Turkish President Erdogan reiterated his conditions for joining the US-led war in the region.

The Mideast war and the US election

By Patrick Martin, 7 October 2014

Four weeks before the congressional election, the Democrats and Republicans are engaged in a conspiracy of silence over US war plans in the Middle East.

ISIS gains provide further pretext for US ground troops in Iraq and Syria

By Mike Head, 7 October 2014

Air strikes by the US and its allies have failed to halt the ISIS siege of Kobane on the Syrian-Turkish border.

New Zealand government prepares to join US war in Middle East

By Tom Peters, 7 October 2014

Just nine days after his government was re-elected, Prime Minister John Key said he would consider sending soldiers to Iraq.

UK terror trial collapses because defendant briefed MI5

By Robert Stevens, 6 October 2014

Moazzam Begg was one of four people arrested in February on suspicion of attending a terrorist training camp in Syria, possessing documents for a purpose connected to terrorism.

Behind the war against ISIS

By Bill Van Auken, 4 October 2014

The call for a military crusade against “savagery,” “zealots” and “raw evil” is an echo of the rhetoric employed by the yellow press over a century ago.

Australia commits to combat operations in Middle East

By James Cogan, 4 October 2014

The Abbott government’s deployment of military forces has been facilitated by the bipartisan support of the Labor Party opposition.

Canada to dramatically escalate its role in Mideast war

By Keith Jones, 4 October 2014

Canada is deploying fighter jets to participate in the US bombing campaign in Iraq and possibly Syria.

Marines in Kuwait; Turkey joins US coalition

New steps to wider war in Middle East

By Patrick Martin, 3 October 2014

Despite Obama’s pledge of no boots on the ground, more than 17,000 US ground troops in Kuwait could be quickly deployed in the new war in Syria and Iraq.

US war against the people of Syria and Iraq

By Patrick Martin, 2 October 2014

The White House said Tuesday that restrictions on drone missile strikes meant to limit civilian casualties would not apply to operations in Syria and Iraq.

Pseudo-left New Anti-capitalist Party backs France’s “war on terror” agenda

By Francis Dubois, 2 October 2014

The NPA’s response to the French government’s anti-terror law amounts to a defense of both imperialist war in the Middle East and police repression at home.