Syria

State Department Syria memo: Setting the stage for war with Russia

By Bill Van Auken, 24 June 2016

The frustration expressed by the 51 State Department signatories is with the failure not just of Obama’s Syria policy, but of US imperialism’s entire Middle East strategy.

Reports of sectarian massacres as Fallujah falls to Iraqi government

By James Cogan, 20 June 2016

The Iraqi forces are being accompanied by US, British and Australian military “advisors.”

State Department “dissent” memo backs escalation of regime-change war in Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 18 June 2016

The memo has ratcheted up tensions with Moscow while providing a glimpse of what may prove to be the policy of the next US administration.

US Navy to continue Black Sea incursions, brushing aside Russian demands

By Thomas Gaist, 18 June 2016

Rather than countering “Russian aggression,” the breakneck militarization of the Black Sea is rooted in the drive by the US and European powers to control the Eurasian landmass.

Obama green-lights escalation of Afghanistan war

By Thomas Gaist, 11 June 2016

The White House has authorized a major escalation of US air and ground combat operations targeting Taliban forces and others opposed to the stooge regime in Kabul.

Turkey’s Erdogan uses terror attack to escalate repression of opposition

By Halil Celik, 11 June 2016

The latest terror attack will only accelerate and facilitate the drive of the Turkish ruling elite towards militarism and dictatorship, while confusing the masses.

Fallujah: A symbol of US war crimes

By James Cogan, 8 June 2016

The humanitarian disaster that is unfolding in Fallujah is the product of the US-led invasion in 2003 and Washington’s deliberate stoking of sectarian conflict in the face of determined Iraqi resistance.

US-backed offensive against Fallujah threatens “human catastrophe”

By Bill Van Auken, 1 June 2016

The siege of the Iraqi city has exposed the deep sectarian fault lines in Iraq that are the product of the US occupation and its divide-and-rule tactics.

Thousands of civilians in danger as US-backed forces mount offensives in Iraq and Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 26 May 2016

The offensives launched by US-backed forces on both sides of the Iraqi-Syrian border threaten to deepen the region’s crisis.

US-backed offensive to seize Iraqi city of Fallujah

By Peter Symonds, 24 May 2016

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al Abadi is desperately seeking to shore up his fragile government.

Canadian ruling elite applauds Liberal government for securing seat at Syria peace talks

By Roger Jordan, 24 May 2016

Canada’s seat at the table has been secured through its services rendered in the US-led military operations in the Middle East.

US and its allies threaten escalation of Syrian war

By Bill Van Auken, 18 May 2016

The failure to set a date for the resumption of talks points to the continuation of a conflict that threatens to spill over into a wider war involving the US and Russia.

Refugees shot by Turkish border guards

By Martin Kreickenbaum, 17 May 2016

According to eyewitness reports published by Human Rights Watch, at least five people were shot or beaten to death by Turkish border guards on the country’s border with Syria in March and April.

A further eruption of US militarism in the Middle East

By Bill Van Auken, 10 May 2016

A century after the Sykes-Picot agreement dividing the Middle East between imperialist powers, the volcanic eruption of US militarism has shattered the nation-state system created by that accord.

Army captain’s lawsuit challenges legality of Obama’s war against ISIS

By Tom Carter, 9 May 2016

The lawsuit sheds light on the assertion of unlimited presidential powers to launch and wage wars.

Baghdad on military lockdown over fear of protests

By Bill Van Auken, 7 May 2016

As the US military escalates its intervention in Iraq, the government appears on the brink of collapse.

Australian government boasts of helping US kill its own citizens in Middle East

By Mike Head, 7 May 2016

Remarks by Prime Minister Turnbull amount to sanctioning extra-judicial killings as a matter of government policy.

New Zealand Labour Party leader visits Iraq

By Tom Peters, 6 May 2016

Andrew Little praised New Zealand’s troops in Iraq and pushed for their mission to be extended, underscoring the fraud of Labour’s vote against the deployment last year.

US Navy Seal killed in Iraq combat

By Bill Van Auken, 4 May 2016

The fighting in Iraq came as the US and Russia sought to broker a renewed cessation of hostilities in the Syrian city of Aleppo.

Iraqi regime shaken by storming of Baghdad’s Green Zone

By Thomas Gaist, 2 May 2016

In a desperate effort to prop up its ailing puppet regime, Washington is preparing to meet opposition with, as Defense Secretary Carter put it, “the full might of the US military.”

Civilian deaths in Syria surge as US-Russian brokered ceasefire unravels

By Thomas Gaist, 30 April 2016

American support for the ceasefire was a tactical maneuver, aimed at buying time for US forces to prepare a renewed push.

Obama’s war summit in Europe

By Bill Van Auken, 26 April 2016

Nearly eight years after he addressed 200,000 in Berlin, promising “hope” and “change,” Obama presided over a summit with the European powers on the expansion of war in the Middle East and new provocations against Russia.

US authorizes intensified air strikes against civilians in Iraq and Syria

By Thomas Gaist, 21 April 2016

The loosening of the Pentagon’s rules of engagement coincides with an escalation by the US and its Gulf allies in Iraq, Syria and Yemen.

Obama flies to Saudi Arabia amid rising tensions

By Bill Van Auken, 20 April 2016

While friction has arisen over Washington’s dealings with Iran and fallout from 9/11, the monarchical dictatorship remains a linchpin of US policy in the Middle East.

Canada’s Liberal government finalizes $15 billion Saudi arms deal

By Carl Bronski, 20 April 2016

The foreign minister has been caught out lying shamelessly about the Liberal government’s deciding role in finalizing a $15 billion arms deal with the Saudi regime.

In Cairo, French President Hollande defends the bloodstained Sisi junta

By Alex Lantier and Kumaran Ira, 20 April 2016

Hollande discussed with the Egyptian dictator his response to the November 13 attacks in Paris before deciding to impose a state of emergency across France.

Hollande sheds crocodile tears over refugees in Lebanon visit

By Kumaran Ira, 19 April 2016

French President François Hollande began his four-day trip to the Middle East, visiting Lebanon, Egypt and Jordan, to boost economic and military ties amidst escalating war.

Doha oil talks collapse

By Nick Beams, 19 April 2016

The main reason for the failure to agree on an oil production freeze appears to be tensions between Saudi Arabia and Iran, which are on opposites sides in conflicts in the Middle East.

Plan B: CIA prepares to arm Syrian “rebels” with antiaircraft weapons

By Bill Van Auken, 14 April 2016

Washington is warning that if it is unable to achieve regime change through UN-brokered talks, it will drastically escalate the Syrian bloodbath.

Saudi onslaught against Yemen continues amid official cease-fire

By Thomas Gaist, 13 April 2016

Yet another UN-brokered “cease-fire” in Yemen has failed to effect even a temporary halt to the violence that has left more than 6,000 Yemenis dead

US deploys B-52s for bombing in Syria, Iraq

By Patrick Martin, 11 April 2016

The movement of heavy bombers to the Persian Gulf is a major escalation in the US war, carried out with virtually no public discussion.

Military chiefs seize on Brussels attacks to send more US troops to Iraq

By Thomas Gaist, 29 March 2016

More than four years after the official end of the US occupation of Iraq, and with a current presence of some 5,000 troops, military leaders are calling for additional military assets.

Australia: Socialist Alternative hails downing of Russian jet in Syria

By Oscar Grenfell, 29 March 2016

The declaration that Turkey’s flagrant act of war was “a small victory for humanity” underscores the pseudo-lefts’ support for imperialist provocations, including those that threaten to trigger world war.

Historic city of Palmyra falls to Syrian government forces

By Thomas Gaist, 28 March 2016

The renewed push by the Syrian military, aided by Russian air cover, followed last week’s visit of US Secretary of State John Kerry to Moscow.

Canadian Liberal government to implement military spending hikes

By Roger Jordan, 28 March 2016

The Liberal government has already expanded Canada’s role in the Mideast war and is now considering further military interventions in Africa and Haiti.

Hundreds of US Marines provide combat support as Iraqi forces advance toward Mosul

By Thomas Gaist, 25 March 2016

Two weeks after secretly deploying to northern Iraq, US Marines are pounding Iraqi villages in support of an Iraqi government offensive overseen by US advisors.

Arson attack on witness to murders in Palestinian village of Duma

By Jean Shaoul, 23 March 2016

The fire was clearly aimed at intimidating the witnesses in the forthcoming trial.

The terror bombings in Brussels

By Alex Lantier, 23 March 2016

This horrific attack targeted innocent people in no way responsible for the imperialist wars that have devastated the Middle East.

Syrian war enters sixth year with graver dangers still ahead

By Bill Van Auken, 18 March 2016

The recent “cessation of hostilities” and partial withdrawal of Russian forces will not stop the escalation of US militarism in the region and beyond.

Russia announces partial withdrawal from Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 16 March 2016

Moscow’s intervention was directed principally at forestalling the imposition of a US puppet regime in Damascus hostile to the interests of Russia’s ruling oligarchy.

Second terrorist attack in a month in Turkish capital kills at least 37

By Halil Celik, 15 March 2016

The ruling elite is exploiting the attack to justify stepped-up security operations in Kurdish areas of Turkey and preparations to invade Syria.

The International Socialist Organization agitates for war with Russia over Syria

By Alex Lantier, 12 March 2016

Amid bitter disputes within the American state over Obama’s Syria policy, the ISO is seeking to build broader support for an escalation of US involvement in the Middle East war.

Washington steps up threats over Iran missile tests

By Bill Van Auken, 11 March 2016

While the tests by Iran do not violate the nuclear accord, Washington sees them as an intolerable affront to its drive for hegemony.

US generals push for more troops in Iraq, Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 10 March 2016

In congressional testimony, a top commander made clear that the US intervention is aimed not merely at ISIS, but at Iran and Russia as well.

Canada’s parliament endorses expanded role in Mideast war

By Roger Jordan, 10 March 2016

The Liberal government’s expansion of Canada’s role in the Mideast war underscores the fraudulent character of its anti-war pose in last year’s election.

New York Times on Clinton and Libya: Portrait of a war criminal

By Bill Van Auken, 1 March 2016

The Times piece details the leading role played by Clinton in fomenting a war of aggression that killed tens if not hundreds of thousands.

Syria fighting continues into third day of US-Russian “truce”

By Thomas Gaist, 29 February 2016

US war planes continue to strike targets throughout large areas of the country, while American commandos organized offensive operations by an array of proxy forces.

Sticking point in Syria truce: Washington’s support for Al Qaeda

By Bill Van Auken, 25 February 2016

Amid bitter recriminations over the “cessation of hostilities” brokered by the US and Russia, all the lies used to promote both regime-change in Syria and the “war on terror” are disintegrating.

Under cover of truce with Russia, US prepares military escalation in Syria

By Barry Grey, 24 February 2016

The Obama administration has pushed for a truce largely to buy time and prevent a complete military rout of the Al Qaeda-affiliated al-Nusra Front and its allied “rebels.”

More than 100 killed in ISIS suicide bombings in Syria

By Niles Williamson, 22 February 2016

The devastating attacks in Homs and Damascus came just hours after US Secretary of State John Kerry announced a tentative ceasefire, for the second time in two weeks.

Saudi Arabia cancels $3 billion grant for French military aid to Lebanon

By Kumaran Ira, 22 February 2016

Saudi Arabia’s decision to halt military aid to Lebanon points to escalating tensions across the Middle East unleashed by the war drive in Syria.

US launches airstrikes against Libya

By Bill Van Auken, 20 February 2016

Five years after toppling Libya’s government, Washington and its allies are embarking on a new military campaign under the banner of the war on terror.

Turkish threats against Kurds set stage for ground invasion of Syria

By Halil Celik, 20 February 2016

The Turkish government is escalating its accusations that Syrian Kurdish forces carried out Wednesday’s terror bombing in Ankara.

Syriza-led Greek government takes its place in US war drive alongside Israel

By John Vassilopoulos and Jean Shaoul, 20 February 2016

The pseudo-left Syriza government is backing US plans to dominate the energy-rich Eastern Mediterranean region and the Middle East.

Turkey escalates war threats after terror attacks

By Johannes Stern, 19 February 2016

NATO member Turkey is deliberately risking a military confrontation with Russia, which could rapidly develop into all-out war between the great powers.

Saudi Arabia pushes for alliance with Turkey and Egypt

By Jean Shaoul, 19 February 2016

Saudi efforts to effect reconciliation between Egypt and Turkey come in the wake of last December’s agreement to restore diplomatic relations between Israel and Turkey.

Obama lectures Russia on Syrian “quagmire”

By Bill Van Auken, 18 February 2016

If there is a “quagmire” in the Middle East, it is of Washington’s creation, the product of unending wars for regime change aimed at imposing US hegemony over the region and its vast energy resources.

Turkey pushes for ground invasion of Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 17 February 2016

The call for a major escalation of the imperialist intervention in Syria has been accompanied by a propaganda campaign over alleged Russian strikes on hospitals.

Syria fighting escalates as ceasefire deadline approaches

By Bill Van Auken, 16 February 2016

The intensifying clashes on the Syrian-Turkish border have placed the five-year-old conflict in Syria on a hair trigger for provoking a global confrontation.

Washington denounces Russia, backs escalation of Syria war

By Alex Lantier, 15 February 2016

The NATO powers are supporting plans for a Turkish and Saudi invasion of Syria that could engulf the entire Middle East in war and trigger a global conflict.

Regional tensions and falling oil prices deepen crisis of Saudi monarchy

By Jean Shaoul, 15 February 2016

The Saudi monarchy is seeking to impose onto the working class the full cost of the deepening economic crisis and its disastrous military interventions.

Syrian war continues after Munich deal

By Bill Van Auken, 13 February 2016

The agreement on a cessation of hostilities and humanitarian aid cannot paper over the diametrically opposed aims of Washington and Moscow.

The US “Plan B” for Syria and the threat of world war

By Bill Van Auken, 12 February 2016

With the war for regime change in Syria on the ropes, Washington and its allies are in feverish discussions over implementing a “Plan B” of direct military intervention.

Canada’s media pushes for more military spending, bigger Mideast war role

By Roger Jordan, 12 February 2016

The Trudeau government is significantly expanding Canada’s role in the Mideast war, yet the media is criticizing it for not acting even more aggressively in alliance with Washington.

New York Times vents recriminations over Syria debacle

By Bill Van Auken, 9 February 2016

Roger Cohen’s hysterical column expresses rage within sections of the military and intelligence apparatus over the fate of the US regime-change operation.

London donor conference pledges aid only to keep Syrian refugees out of Europe

By Jean Shaoul, 8 February 2016

The amount raised for 2016 equates to less than $400-500 per person per year, assuming the donors honour their pledges.

Threat of wider war looms as Saudi monarchy proposes Syria intervention

By Bill Van Auken, 6 February 2016

The deployment of Saudi troops on the pretext of fighting the Islamic State of Syria and Iraq would inevitably be aimed at toppling the Assad government.

Syrian war negotiations collapse after two days

By Thomas Gaist, 4 February 2016

The talks have been postponed for at least three weeks amid an upsurge of fighting between US and Russian-backed forces.

Geneva talks begin as US-backed war in Syria expands

By Bill Van Auken, 2 February 2016

The opening of the talks was overshadowed by a vicious bombing attack on a Shia shrine outside the Syrian capital of Damascus.

Netherlands to begin bombing Islamic State in Syria

By Josh Varlin, 2 February 2016

Prime Minister Rutte’s announcement of the decision to begin bombing ISIS in Syria marks a dramatic escalation of the Netherlands’ involvement in the US-led campaign.

Washington to escalate US Mideast wars

By Bill Van Auken, 30 January 2016

The Obama White House is set to approve Pentagon demands for more troops in Iraq and another US military intervention in Libya.

Sweden announces plans to deport up to 80,000 refugees

By Martin Kreickenbaum, 29 January 2016

Sweden’s announcement came the same day as Human Rights Watch published a scathing indictment of the curtailment of democratic rights in Europe in response to the refugee crisis.

Plight of Syrians on Jordan’s border exposes US and European policy

By Jean Shaoul, 27 January 2016

Around 17,000 Syrians desperate to flee violent civil war are marooned in a remote and barren area near a military base on the southern border with Jordan.

On eve of Syria “peace talks,” Washington threatens escalation across region

By Bill Van Auken, 25 January 2016

Top US officials have declared that they are prepared to seek a “military solution” in Syria, put “boots on the ground” in Iraq and launch another US-NATO war in Libya.

Turkish invasion threat escalates Syrian conflict

By Bill Van Auken, 22 January 2016

The reports of Turkish incursions into northern Syria come amid heightened tensions between Ankara and Moscow.

“Staggering” violence in Iraq: The legacy of US war and occupation

By Bill Van Auken, 21 January 2016

From January 1, 2014 through October 31, 2015, the UN recorded at least 55,047 civilian casualties, while warning that the real toll could be much higher.

Twenty-five years since the first Gulf War

Desert Slaughter: The Imperialist War Against Iraq—an enduring contribution to waging war on war

By Eric London, 21 January 2016

In 1991, the Workers League, forerunner of the SEP, published this valuable compendium of articles and statements providing a Marxist analysis of the imperialist war in Iraq and the breakdown of the postwar international order.

Washington invokes hunger to promote war in Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 16 January 2016

Allegations that Syrian government forces are deliberately starving besieged villagers have become the basis for yet another propaganda campaign for regime change.

Pentagon chief outlines plan for escalation of Iraq-Syria war

By Patrick Martin, 15 January 2016

Defense Secretary Ashton Carter addressed several hundred US commandos at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, before their deployment to the Mideast war zone.

Canada weighing options to expand its role in Mideast war

By Roger Jordan, 14 January 2016

The proposals made by Canada’s Chief of Defense Staff include using Special Forces to conduct black ops in Iraq and deploying regular army units to train fighters.

US Navy vessels impounded in Iranian waters

By Keith Jones, 13 January 2016

US Republicans seized on yesterday’s incident to repeat their charge that Obama is “appeasing” Tehran and demand a renewed campaign of economic sanctions and military threats against Iran.

Turkey and Western powers escalate war rhetoric in response to Istanbul attack

By Thomas Gaist, 13 January 2016

Tuesday’s suicide attack in the heart of Istanbul has provoked an outburst of war threats and moralizing from the Turkish and NATO elites.

Yemen: Five medical staff dead in third bombing of Doctors Without Borders facilities

By Thomas Gaist, 12 January 2016

The US-supported Saudi coalition destroyed two separate MSF facilities during the final months of 2015, before deploying cluster bombs against residential areas in Sanaa during the first week of 2016.

The New York Times and “human rights” imperialism in Syria

By Niles Williamson, 12 January 2016

The New York Times continues to play a filthy role, exploiting reports of starvation in the Syrian town of Madaya to push for the expansion of US military operations aimed at the overthrow of President Bashar al-Assad.

Federal prosecutors claim two US Palestinians are linked to terrorism

By Patrick Martin, 9 January 2016

Despite media headlines suggesting the arrested men have ties to ISIS, the only charges brought to date involve Internet chatter and making false statements to immigration officials.

Turkey and Arab states line up with Israel over Syria, repression of Palestinians

By Jean Shaoul, 8 January 2016

Turkish President Erdoğan made a state visit to Saudi Arabia a few days ago, just two weeks after signing an agreement with Tel Aviv to restore diplomatic relations.

US-armed Saudi coalition cancels ceasefire, renews military onslaught in Yemen

By Thomas Gaist, 6 January 2016

The US government has helped coordinate the Saudi-led war against Yemen, which has already killed thousands of civilians and reduced large sections of the population to starvation.

Middle East tensions escalate in wake of Saudi mass beheadings

By Bill Van Auken, 5 January 2016

The Saudi monarchy’s mass beheadings and subsequent cutting of ties with Iran have all the earmarks of a deliberate provocation.

US threatens new sanctions on Iran

By Peter Symonds, 4 January 2016

Washington’s threat is particularly provocative as it came just days after Tehran fulfilled a key aspect of last July’s nuclear deal—to ship its enriched uranium to Russia.

As fighting in Turkey mounts, Kurdish nationalists escalate independence drive

By Halil Celik, 30 December 2015

Kurdish nationalist groups are responding to the Turkish military crackdown with appeals to Russia and the imperialist powers for support to wage war inside Turkey.

US military to expand global operations in 2016

By Thomas Gaist, 29 December 2015

US imperialism is expanding its global Special Forces network, preparing new deployments of combat forces to confront Russia and China, and flooding every region of the world with advanced weaponry.

US-backed Iraqi forces recapture Ramadi from ISIS

By James Cogan, 29 December 2015

Amidst boasting by Iraqi Prime Minister of the “liberation” of Ramadi, even the sanitised media footage shows scenes of utter devastation.

US air strike kills 12 Iraqi civilians

By Bill Van Auken, 23 December 2015

The latest death toll from the US bombing campaign came as Iraqi troops and militias entered the ISIS-held city of Ramadi.