War Drive in the Middle East

US accused of war crimes in air strikes on Iraqi city of Mosul

By Bill Van Auken, 29 March 2017

The scale of the atrocity carried out by the US military in the March 17 bombing of Mosul continues to emerge amid fresh reports of the slaughter of civilians.

As Yemen war enters third year, Pentagon moves to escalate slaughter

By Bill Van Auken, 28 March 2017

The Trump administration is preparing for a potential direct US ground intervention in support of the Saudi regime’s savage war to further an agenda of confrontation with Iran.

The massacre in Mosul

By James Cogan, 27 March 2017

In February, the Trump administration let it be known that it would sharply escalate the onslaught on Mosul—regardless of how many innocent lives would be lost.

Casualties soar in Iraqi city of Mosul

By James Cogan, 25 March 2017

In the latest atrocity, an air strike on March 17 slaughtered as many as 200 civilians.

Fighting flares in Damascus as US escalates air war in Syria

By Jordan Shilton, 22 March 2017

The renewed fighting underscores the highly unstable situation into which the Trump administration is preparing to send a further 1,000 US marines.

Israel air raid targets government positions as Syrian conflict intensifies

By Jordan Shilton, 18 March 2017

Syrian government forces fired anti-aircraft missiles at Israeli aircraft carrying out air strikes near Palmyra, amid reports that the US bombed a mosque near Aleppo, killing 46 civilians.

Letter from a Syrian reader: “There is a new sentiment of solidarity in the ranks of the poor people”

18 March 2017

The WSWS has received the following correspondence from a reader and supporter in Damascus on the situation in Syria after six years of a civil war instigated and abetted by the major imperialist powers.

US airstrike kills 23 civilians as Marines deploy to Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 10 March 2017

The escalation of the US intervention in both Syria and Iraq is resulting in a rising toll of civilian casualties in both countries.

Canadian military preparing for new role in Syria, extension of Ukraine mission

By Roger Jordan, 4 March 2017

The use of Canadian troops to police so-called safe zones in Syria would see Ottawa integrated even more fully into the US-led war for regime change in Damascus.

Turkey prepares for military escalation in the Middle East

By Halil Celik, 3 March 2017

Ankara is expected to expand its intervention in the wars in Syria and Iraq, while also threatening Iran.

Washington accuses Russia of bombing US-backed forces in Syria

By Jordan Shilton, 2 March 2017

The incident underscores the explosive character of the Syria conflict, which could rapidly escalate into a direct clash between nuclear-armed powers.

Thousands flee as US artillery and air strikes intensify in Mosul offensive

By Jordan Shilton, 1 March 2017

The brutal offensive on Iraq’s second-largest city has already displaced upwards of 200,000 civilians, including 8,000 over the past week.

Pentagon prepares for bigger, bloodier war in Iraq and Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 25 February 2017

Among recommendations being prepared for Trump is a lifting of restrictions on rules of engagement supposedly designed to limit civilian casualties.

Pentagon prepares plan to deploy ground troops in Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 17 February 2017

The dispatch of conventional ground troops to Syria as well as an intensification of US airstrikes are reportedly both under consideration.

Syria talks restart in Astana as fighting continues

By Jordan Shilton, 15 February 2017

The talks began just days after an Amnesty International report detailed the mass extrajudicial execution of an estimated 13,000 opponents of the Assad government at a Damascus prison.

Air strike in Afghanistan kills more than 20 as top US commander calls for more troops

By Bill Van Auken, 11 February 2017

General John Nicholson, told a Senate panel that “a few thousand” more US troops were needed to sustain what is now by far Washington’s longest war.

Washington’s war threat against Iran

By Bill Van Auken, 3 February 2017

It would be a dangerous mistake to believe that the actions of the Trump White House are the result of mere improvisation or impulse. Rather, they are part of a definite plan.

Dozens killed in Yemen in first US special forces raid under Trump

By Niles Niemuth, 30 January 2017

Reports indicate that at least 57 people were killed on Sunday in a raid in the central province of Baydah, including 16 civilians and one American soldier.

White House to issue executive order on “safe zones” in Syria, ban on Muslim immigrants and refugees

By Niles Niemuth, 27 January 2017

The leak of the draft executive order to the media on Thursday was preceded by an extended interview with ABC News in which Trump endorsed US-controlled “safe zones” inside Syria.

Syrian government, “rebels” meet for talks in Kazakhstan

By Bill Van Auken, 25 January 2017

In the wake of the strategic defeat suffered by the CIA-backed Islamist militias, the US participated only as an observer in the talks brokered by Russia.

Joint Russian, Turkish bombing campaign in Syria deepens NATO crisis

By Bill Van Auken, 20 January 2017

The joint Russian-Turkish action came on the eve of the inauguration of Donald Trump, who is reportedly preparing a major escalation of US intervention in the region.

Iraqi civilian death toll mounts as fighting intensifies in Mosul

By Jordan Shilton, 17 January 2017

Up to 30 civilians were reportedly killed in a US-led air strike last Thursday. The UN reports that fully half of all casualties in Mosul have been civilians.

Paris conference pleads with Trump to continue Middle East “peace process”

By Jean Shaoul, 17 January 2017

The Paris meeting demonstrates the futility of seeking a way forward for for the Palestinian people through a filthy deal between the Palestinian bourgeoisie, the Israeli government and the reactionary Arab states.

Syria accuses Israel of launching missile strike against military airport in Damascus

By Niles Niemuth, 14 January 2017

Israel reportedly carried out its third attack against Syria in as many months even as a ceasefire in the six-year-old US-stoked civil war continues to hold.

US air strike kills 20 civilians in Syria

By Jordan Shilton, 11 January 2017

Details of last week’s raid in Idlib province emerged as Democrats and Republicans in the Senate introduced bipartisan legislation to intensify punitive measures against Russia over its interventions in Syria and Ukraine.

Canadian Afghan war veteran commits suicide after killing family

By Laurent Lafrance, 11 January 2017

Lionel Desmond was suffering from PTSD but failed to receive the support he required due to systematic cuts to health care and veterans’ services.

US destroyer fires warning shots at Iranian patrol boats

By Peter Symonds, 10 January 2017

The incident underscores the volatile situation in the Middle East and the potential for a rapid rise of US-Iranian tensions once Trump assumes the US presidency.

US-Russian tensions sharpen over Syria

By Jordan Shilton, 10 January 2017

The carrying out of a ground raid by US special forces troops in eastern Syria makes clear Washington’s determination to escalate the conflict.

US bombs hospital amid escalating assault on Mosul

By Bill Van Auken, 31 December 2016

The attack came as US-backed Iraqi forces launched what they described as the second phase of their assault on Iraq’s second-largest city.

Russia and Turkey broker ceasefire in Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 30 December 2016

The ceasefire, which excludes ISIS and Al Qaeda, as well as the Kurdish militia, is supposed to lay the foundations for peace talks in Kazakhstan.

Mosul, Iraq and Obama’s legacy of war

By James Cogan, 22 December 2016

There is no doubt as to the overriding motive behind the 1991 Gulf War, years of sanctions on Iraq, the 2003 US invasion and the blood-letting in Mosul—oil.

Russia, Iran and Turkey issue joint declaration on Syrian settlement

By Bill Van Auken, 22 December 2016

The joining of Turkey, a NATO ally, with Moscow and Tehran has provoked anger and recriminations from the US establishment and media.

Turkey, Russia, Iran sign deal on Syria after shooting of Russian ambassador

By Halil Celik and Alex Lantier, 21 December 2016

Though Turkey is a NATO ally of the United States, it is reacting to the victory of the Syrian regime in Aleppo by moving closer to Russia and Iran.

Russian ambassador to Turkey assassinated in Ankara

By Bill Van Auken, 20 December 2016

The assassination by an off-duty policeman of the Russian ambassador comes amidst rising international tensions over the Syrian government’s retaking of Aleppo.

The International Socialist Organization and the fall of Aleppo

By Andre Damon, 20 December 2016

The crisis of the US-backed proxy war for regime change in Syria has provoked a furious response from the pseudo-left apologists for US imperialism.

While decrying “massacre” in Aleppo, US steps up bloodshed in Mosul

By Bill Van Auken, 16 December 2016

The hypocrisy of US denunciations of Syria, Russia and Iran for the suffering in Aleppo is exposed by the plight of the besieged Iraqi city of Mosul.

Washington’s hypocrisy over the fall of Aleppo

By Bill Van Auken, 15 December 2016

The hysterical denunciations by Western governments and media of alleged atrocities in eastern Aleppo are a measure of the debacle for US imperialism in Syria.

Syrian government retakes eastern Aleppo

By Bill Van Auken, 14 December 2016

Under a deal brokered between Turkey and Russia, Islamist militias have agreed to evacuate the last remaining area of the city under their control.

Pseudo-left covers for Corbyn’s capitulation to Blair over Iraq war

By Laura Tiernan, 14 December 2016

The pseudo-left’s support for Corbyn gives Labour a blank cheque to facilitate British military aggression.

US sends more ground troops to support Kurdish militias in Syria

By James Cogan, 12 December 2016

The increased involvement of American forces will heighten already tense relations between the United States and Turkey.

US-backed Islamist militias abandon Aleppo’s old city as Syrian army advances

By Alex Lantier, 8 December 2016

Reports are emerging that Washington is pressing opposition forces in Aleppo to abandon the city and continue fighting elsewhere.

Trump victory strengthens Israel’s far-right and settler parties

By Jean Shaoul, 5 December 2016

Trump’s remarks on the Israel/Palestine conflict reflect the most extreme demands of Israel’s settler movement and Netanyahu’s political rival Naftali Bennett.

Moscow in secret talks with Syrian “rebels”

By Bill Van Auken, 2 December 2016

The talks brokered between Russia and Turkey are a further manifestation of the debacle facing the US regime change campaign.

Mosul and imperialist “human rights”

By James Cogan, 2 December 2016

The attitude of the imperialist powers to war crimes is determined by whether they benefit from them.

Australia’s Socialist Alternative agitates for escalation of US intervention in Syria

By Will Morrow, 2 December 2016

Socialist Alternative’s commentary on Syria closely aligns with the most hawkish sections of the US military and intelligence apparatus.

Pentagon advances coverup for September bombing of Syrian army

By Bill Van Auken, 1 December 2016

The claim that the massacre of as many as 90 Syrian soldiers was a “human error” carried out in “good faith” is contradicted by the US military’s own admissions.

New York Times vents Washington’s rage over debacle in Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 30 November 2016

The Times has churned out countless lying editorials and columns justifying the bloodbath instigated by US imperialism in Syria as a “human rights” crusade.

US-backed “rebels” face rout in Aleppo

By Bill Van Auken, 29 November 2016

Syrian government forces have seized some 40 percent of the area previously controlled by militias led by the Al Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front.

Israel carries out airstrikes against ISIS ally in Syria

By Jean Shaoul, 29 November 2016

Sunday’s airstrikes highlight the increasing danger of a wider war involving nuclear-armed powers.

Syrian war threatens to escalate as Turkey accuses Damascus of attacking its troops

By Jordan Shilton, 25 November 2016

The escalation of tensions between Syria and Turkey, a NATO member, poses the very real risk of direct clashes between the major powers.

US arms Syrian Islamists with surface-to-air missiles

By Bill Van Auken, 23 November 2016

The portable missiles have been placed in the hands of the so-called “rebels” in an apparent attempt to escalate the conflict in advance of the change in US administrations.

Fighting intensifies in Mosul and northern Iraq

By James Cogan, 22 November 2016

Hundreds of American personnel are on the ground and involved in the combat, while British and Australian troops are also reported to be fighting alongside Iraqi units.

Syrian fighting intensifies amid growing signs of military escalation under Trump

By Bill Van Auken, 17 November 2016

The offensive has been accompanied by an increasingly hysterical campaign in the media against any easing of tensions with Moscow under a Trump administration.

German parliament backs extension of military operations in Iraq and Syria

By Justus Leicht, 14 November 2016

German troops are engaged in a wide-scale military combat mission in the Middle East, having been granted permission to “use military force”.

Bagram air base bombing kills four US personnel in Afghanistan

By Bill Van Auken, 14 November 2016

The attack and other incidents underscore the increasingly precarious situation in Afghanistan after a decade and a half of US war and occupation.

Growing crisis surrounds US-backed offensive in Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 11 November 2016

The assault on the ISIS stronghold of Raqqa has exposed the sharp tensions between the disparate forces that constitute Washington’s allies.

US-backed Kurdish militia announces assault on ISIS capital in Syria

By James Cogan, 7 November 2016

The largely rhetorical announcement appears primarily aimed at bolstering Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

Chair of UK Iraq War Inquiry: Tony Blair went “beyond the facts” to justify invasion

By Paul Mitchell, 3 November 2016

The British parliament, led by the Labour government, voted for an illegal war because it agreed with Blair that supporting the US was a strategic imperative.

Britain’s pseudo-left and the party of war

By Robert Stevens, 2 November 2016

The election of Jeremy Corbyn as Labour leader one year ago has not changed Labour’s pro-war agenda one iota.

The political anatomy of pseudo-left war propaganda

Part two

By Eric London, 2 November 2016

A Road Unforeseen employs postmodernist political categories and identity politics in an explicit call for US war in the Middle East.

Sectarian tensions rise in Iraq as Mosul offensive enters third week

By Jordan Shilton, 1 November 2016

Iraqi government troops entered the eastern outskirts of the northern Iraqi city Monday amid ongoing warnings of a humanitarian catastrophe facing its residents.

New Zealand pseudo-lefts hold protests to denounce Russia

By John Braddock, 1 November 2016

The rallies were an attempt to whip up support for the US-led intervention in Syria and its reckless confrontation with Russia.

The political anatomy of pseudo-left war propaganda

Part one

By Eric London, 1 November 2016

A Road Unforeseen employs postmodernist political categories and identity politics in constructing an argument for war in the Middle East.

Sixty killed in new US-Saudi war crime in Yemen

By Bill Van Auken, 31 October 2016

At least 60 civilians were killed in the latest bombing raid, which comes on the heels of reports warning of mass starvation.

UN warns US-Saudi war threatens mass starvation in Yemen

By Bill Van Auken, 29 October 2016

After 18 months of bombardment, the catastrophe unfolding in the poorest nation in the Middle East constitutes a war crime of historic proportions.

US-backed Islamist rebels launch offensive in Syria

By Jordan Shilton, 29 October 2016

Continuing its grotesque double standards over human rights violations, the US media broadly welcomed an Islamist rebel offensive in Aleppo that included indiscriminate shelling of civilian areas.

Aleppo, Mosul and “war crimes”

By Bill Van Auken, 28 October 2016

Those denouncing Russia for “war crimes” in Aleppo have carried out atrocities over the course of the past three quarters of a century that vastly eclipse the events in the embattled Syrian city.

Obama administration split on “Plan B” for Syria intervention

By Bill Van Auken, 25 October 2016

The US National Security Council reportedly discussed proposals to provide heavy weapons to Al Qaeda-linked rebels, but took no decision.

Roger Cohen of the New York Times declares that anti-Zionism is anti-Semitism

By Chris Marsden, 24 October 2016

Cohen’s attack on the left’s “anti-Semitism,” which seeks to proscribe all criticism of Israel, is a slander directed in particular against Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn and his supporters.

Mosul offensive intensifies regional tensions as Turkish soldiers intervene in Iraq

By Jordan Shilton, 24 October 2016

The dispute between the Iraqi and Turkish governments is only one of a vast array of regional and sectarian divisions being inflamed by the US-backed offensive on the northern Iraqi city.

Mosul offensive stirs a cauldron of conflicts

By James Cogan, 21 October 2016

Before Mosul even falls, savage fighting threatens to break out between nominal allies in the operations against Islamic State.

The siege of Mosul and the crimes of US imperialism

By Bill Van Auken, 20 October 2016

The offensive against Mosul is the latest in a series of US war crimes that have killed, maimed and displaced millions across the Middle East.

Amid Mosul offensive, Turkey denounces US policy, stakes claims in Balkans

By Alex Lantier, 20 October 2016

Greek officials warned that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's statements threatened to undermine Turkey's relations with Greece and the entire European Union.

US-backed Iraqi forces tighten noose around Mosul

By James Cogan, 18 October 2016

The increasingly clear intent is to use air strikes, starvation and desperation to weaken what remains of ISIS’s fighting strength.

EU foreign ministers adopt statement denouncing Russia and Syria

By Alex Lantier, 18 October 2016

The European Union statement is aligned with the flood of anti-Russian propaganda emanating from Washington over the NATO war for regime change in Syria.

The US-directed assault on Mosul and imperialist hypocrisy

By James Cogan, 17 October 2016

In both Syria and Iraq, US objectives are the same: asserting its dominance over the key oil-producing region of the world.

US steps up anti-Russian rhetoric over Syria as EU foreign ministers meet

By Robert Stevens, 17 October 2016

The US, UK and France are seeking to impose additional sanctions on Russia over the conflict in Syria.

Western foreign ministers to meet in London to discuss Syria intervention

By Robert Stevens, 15 October 2016

The efforts by Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson to assemble a “coalition of the willing” behind military action in Syria is being led by the Labour Party.

Washington threatens military intervention in Yemen following reported missile attacks on US warship

By Barry Grey, 13 October 2016

The missile incidents follow a savage bombing carried out last Saturday by Saudi war planes on a packed funeral hall in Sanaa, killing at least 140 civilians.

Kerry charges “war crimes” as US escalates tensions with Russia

By Bill Van Auken, 8 October 2016

The US secretary of state charged Moscow with “war crimes” as US-backed, Al Qaeda-affiliated “rebels” appeared close to defeat in Aleppo.

Beating the drums for war with Russia

By Bill Van Auken, 6 October 2016

The New York Times and other major media are weighing in on the side of escalating the US intervention in Syria and militarily confronting Russia.

Threat of US-Russia clash grows after Washington cuts off Syria talks

By Bill Van Auken, 5 October 2016

The Obama administration is set to discuss military options even as Russia has begun deploying more sophisticated anti-aircraft missiles to Syria.

US suspends talks with Russia as danger mounts of escalation in Syrian war

By Jordan Shilton, 4 October 2016

Washington’s attempt to pin the blame on Russia for the breakdown of diplomacy in Syria is thoroughly dishonest and hypocritical.

Russia responds to US threats with blunt warning over use of force in Syria

By Jordan Shilton, 3 October 2016

A US attack on Syrian government forces could result in “total war” and “tectonic shifts” in the Middle East, the Russian Foreign Ministry warned.

More US troops sent to Iraq ahead of assault on Mosul

By James Cogan, 30 September 2016

Justifications have been given in advance for the slaughter of every person labelled a member of ISIS and for large numbers of civilian casualties.

US threatens Russia with end to cooperation in Syria as fighting rages in Aleppo

By Jordan Shilton, 29 September 2016

Kerry’s blunt warning to Lavrov that the US is considering ending all bilateral cooperation with Russia in Syria shows how close the situation is to all-out war.

Syria and the pro-imperialist pseudo-left

By Alex Lantier, 27 September 2016

The response of leading spokesmen of state capitalist and Pabloite tendencies reflect the increasingly open pro-war policies of substantial sections of the international pseudo-left.

US accuses Russia of “war crimes” as danger of clash in Syria mounts

By Jordan Shilton, 26 September 2016

The hypocritical accusations of war crimes hurled at Moscow by the US, Britain and France are an attempt to provide a cover for their reckless policy of regime change in Syria.

Top US general warns Syrian “no-fly” zone means war with Russia

By Bill Van Auken, 24 September 2016

Marine General Joseph Dunford’s warning came amid plans for escalating the US intervention in the region and intensified fighting in Syria.

US pushes for “no fly” zone as Syrian conflict escalates

By Bill Van Auken, 22 September 2016

Washington is exploiting the attack on a UN aid convoy in a bid to strengthen the position of US-backed Islamist militias.

Australian aircraft involved in provocative US-led airstrike in Syria

By Peter Symonds, 22 September 2016

Canberra is so enmeshed in Washington’s proxy war in the Middle East that it could find itself on the frontline of a conflict with Russia.

US intensifies campaign against Russia following attack on aid convoy in Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 21 September 2016

The same Western media that proclaimed the US airstrike on the Syrian army an “accident” have rushed to pin the blame on Russia and Syria for attacking an aid convoy.

UK parliamentary report criticises Libya war but conceals its geo-strategic aims

By Jean Shaoul, 21 September 2016

The Foreign Affairs Committee describes Libya’s political and economic collapse and the growth of the Islamic State group in North Africa.

International Socialist Organization backs NATO escalation in Syria

By Alex Lantier and David North, 21 September 2016

The close links between CIA war propaganda and the ISO’s writings supporting war in Syria are virtually self-evident.

62 dead, 100 wounded as US bombs Syrian army near Deir ez-Zor

By Alex Lantier, 19 September 2016

The bombing threatens to escalate the Syrian conflict into all-out war pitting the US-led NATO alliance against Russia and Syria.

US special forces flee “moderate” rebels in Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 17 September 2016

The threat by the so-called rebels to slaughter American special operations troops exposed the immense contradictions underlying US imperialism’s war for regime change in Syria.

German weekly Die Zeit defends Al Qaeda

By Peter Schwarz, 13 September 2016

Die Zeit is angry that the Russian-American accord on Syria instructs the “moderate rebels” to distance themselves from Al Qaeda.

Fighting rages on in Syria in wake of US-Russia brokered agreement

By Jordan Shilton, 12 September 2016

Washington has acceded to the agreement to give some respite to its proxy forces around Aleppo, where government troops have made substantial gains over recent weeks.

Tensions between Washington and Moscow rise as Russia intercepts US spy planes over Black Sea

By Jordan Shilton, 9 September 2016

Whatever the precise cause of the incident, primary responsibility for the exacerbation of tensions lies with US imperialism and its NATO allies.

German army steps up military intervention in Middle East

By Johannes Stern, 9 September 2016

According to media reports, the German army will massively expand its presence at the Incirlik air base in southeastern Turkey.