Did we suddenly wake up in the midst of a shadowy nightmare? Is Reuters reporting to prompt NATO into action in alliance with Turkey and Saudi Arabia against Russia? This is the reality this morning, as the UN Security Council (UNSC), is now urging Turkey to adhere to norms of international law. Almost everyone now understands that are very close to World War III, albeit powerless to prevent it. The world of geopolitics is spinning out of control, and the same goes for the world.
A recent Reuters report, backed by a slew of reporters, the narrative which is worded like a script from an old war movie.
“Turkey, Saudi Arabia and some European allies want ground troops deployed in Syria as a Russian-backed government advance nears NATO’s southeastern border.”
Where Catastrophic Ideas Come From
This, according to the Reuters sources, leaves us a staged reality, and based on a surreal report that comes across as a being a “matter-of-fact” decision having been made to pit the Syrian Army and the Kurdistan forces against “rebels” caught in the middle in the Syrian debacle. Whereas ISIL was in the middle at a point, somehow the butchers amongst Parisian concert goers are hell bent on finishing the job, perhaps not only for Syria but Turkey as well. Reason has disappeared? Gone are the days when the US led coalition air forces were “supposed” to be decimating the ISIL menace and replaced with boots on the ground. Media only mention American and NATO backed “freedom fighters” these days. This term should be substituted for terrorists. Apparently the Western manipulated and controlled corporate media simply manufacturing convenient truth on a daily basis on a need to know only basis. But the media is not the only troubling menace that adds to the Syrian mess.
Anyone who is informed, and not just by MSM, about what is now going on in the Middle East simply has to be shaking their heads in dismay. Saudi Arabia, NATO and the United States, its allies, have essentially created Arab Spring under the guise of democratic change and now comes the Arab Storm, as [they] are collectively arming and funding ISIL and other groups. All the while [they] are openly proclaiming that it is Russia, Syria, and Iran, the dirty culprits, are the ones who encroaching on NATO’s territory and threaten regional security.
The cited report reels out one striking lie after another, accusing Russia of attacking hospitals, and the Kurds in Iraq of being the aggressors against Turkey. Everything I reality turned up-side-down, and reported on Reuters as the truth and nothing but the truth. The lead reporter, Lisa Barrington, is from Beirut. She has essentially been the official announcer for Bashar al-Assad’s opposition in the last few months. Using her position, she and the other mouthpieces of misinformation at Reuters, are well positioned to violate public trust in the media. Their professional and operational backgrounds are inextricably tied to a hodgepodge of people and organizations with obvious vested interests in the region. Barrington, either by recruiting or by innocent wandering, ended up in a master’s program at Lund University in Holland, and fell immediately into the scheme of the influencers, and absorbed ideas from her academic advisers that are better presented as the “party line” – in terms of: Arab Spring, the Euromaidan, the Balkans disaster, events the Caucasus, or any other human conflict catastrophe that brings forth political and economic benefits to the few.
Allow me to elaborate.
The Center for Middle Eastern Studies at Lund University is headed by one of the extolled experts of Arab Spring, Dr. Leif Stenberg. Please wrap your mind around this, if you will. Stenberg, head of a respected center for expertise on the Middle East, has thrown in with the same people who invested in Arab Spring, the Syria uprising, and the anti-Assad coup being attempted today. Stenberg co-authored “Syria from Reform to Revolt, Volume 2”, which dissects Syrian society from the perspective that Assad was responsible for causing the uprisings that were in fact fueled by previous sanctions, a severe drought, and what former CIA intelligence analyst Philip Giraldi warned in December 2011, was a proxy war about to erupt, and I quote in part:
“Americans should be concerned about what is happening in Syria, if only because it threatens to become another undeclared war like Libya but much, much worse. . . . NATO is already clandestinely engaged in the Syrian conflict, with Turkey taking the lead as U.S. proxy. . . . Unmarked NATO warplanes are arriving at Turkish military bases close to Iskenderum on the Syrian border, delivering weapons from the late Muammar Gaddafi’s arsenals as well as volunteers from the Libyan Transitional National Council who are experienced in pitting local volunteers against trained soldiers, a skill they acquired confronting Gaddafi’s army…”
The Seeds of Empire
Consequently Dr. Stenberg’s protégés and colleagues, end up becoming the fledglings of think tanks, newspapers, research institutes, and other entities, and the very ones on the payroll of western corporations and NGOs. In simple terms, knowingly or unwittingly, the most knowledgeable experts in the field of Middle Eastern study serve as the stooges of hegemony. One only need to look at this news report (use Google or Yandex translate) where Dr. Stenberg is frequently cited. The Lund University professor becomes judge, jury, and executor, and international law is flaunted by accusing Russia of its “illegal” military operations in Syria. It is not so complicated for the Reuters writer, Lisa Barrington’s part, as she readily admits having left the UK for Sweden and Lund out of economic necessity. Lund University is free for those seeking to earn a master’s degree, even foreigners.
It is only too clear; some of the best and brightest are lured into what I would call “policy incubators” – schools of thought where thought is massaged. As further proof, readers of Sweden’s most popular daily newspaper, Svenska Dagbladet, they are assured NATO and the western ideals are in tact. Learned like Dr. Stenberg are used as the dry kindling tender to set the fires of never-ending conflicts. And they are proud of their media notoriety too.
So proud in fact, Stenberg on the media publicity CMES/MECW has received in the wake of the events of 2011. He goes so far in this report, as to complain about the problems his center faced in keeping up with requests for Middle Eastern expertise by the media and governments. I don’t suppose the good doctor ever considered the business of war having need of “experts” for propaganda purposes. What Stenberg describes as “overcrowding” there at the university there in Sweden back in 2010 (PDF), it must have pumped academic heads in Scandinavia like gigantic balloons, the pride in Professor Stenberg’s dogma reflect it so.
Despite my best intention and good efforts, nowhere can I find mentions of the CIA involvement in any of the Arab Spring upheaval by any of these so-called scholars. Google their names, add the + sign, hit search …. Nothing. Plug in the reporting of Former CIA station chief Robert Grenier, correlate these NATO collaborators (like I said, unwilling or not)…. Nothing whatsoever!!
As Jeffrey Silverman, Veterans Today Bureau Chief for Georgia, puts it so mildly, “it is a win-win situation for the CIA, as the real target is not the so called terrorists, ISIL, and the corrupt Syrian regime … but nobody BACK at Langley, the Virginia Farm, are going to lose any sleep over the destabilization and weakening of the Turkish State; this may be the real target in the first place. Europe too needs to be watch out that the EURO, and the EU itself, may targets of convenience on the slippery slope of blowback—unintended consequences. ”
The depth and range of CIA operation is revealing, the untold weeks of the studiousness academic desk research of these individuals and think thanks reveal absolutely NOTHING of the alternative hypotheses purported for Middle East chaos! Nothing! Meanwhile, this report from Grenier implicates the CIA with a snapshot of their covert activities inside Syria. Furthermore, unnamed Israeli intelligence sources leaked information that NATO was neck deep in a Syria coup back in 2011:
“NATO headquarters in Brussels and the Turkish high command are meanwhile drawing up plans for their first military step in Syria, which is to arm the rebels with weapons for combating the tanks and helicopters spearheading the Assad regime’s crackdown on dissent. … NATO strategists are thinking more in terms of pouring large quantities of anti-tank and anti-air rockets, mortars and heavy machine guns into the protest centers for beating back the government armored forces. (DEBKAfile, NATO to give rebels anti-tank weapons, August 14, 2011)”
This 2002 , Democracy Now, report is most revealing, and tells us how the CIA in academia had its resurgence after the 9/11 attacks. I’ve delved into this aspect of world conflict many times, but the NGO and business connectives to professors and universities, students, and eventually professionals in many spheres, is of paramount concern. Through grants funded by NGOs and governments, like the $8 million dollar grant Dr. Stenberg’s CMES got from the Swedish Research Council in 2009, can perpetuate not only research, but an agenda with vast security and geopolitical implications. And these grants bridge continents and institutions as you can see via this University of Nebraska list. This Northwestern School of Communication profile connects Stenberg, his research, and a pretty far out range of academics.
One I found quickly, Dr. Shayna Silverstein’s research examines the politics and aesthetics of sound and movement in the contemporary Middle East. Silverstein authored “Cultural Liberalization or Marginalization? The Cultural Politics of Syrian Folk Dance during Social Market Reform,” with editing from Leif Stenberg and another Syria “expert”, Dr. Christa Salamandra, Associate Professor of Anthropology, Lehman College, City University of New York.
Any reader who has watched the George Clooney film, “The Men Who Stare at Goats” will surely be amused here. Dr. Stenberg’s protégés training to use dance music to democratize Syrians pops into my comedic (ironic) consciousness. It’s difficult to decide for sure if these professors around the world really believe governments financing them do so because of the brilliance of their research. Perhaps the goal of understanding a modernization of “Sufism” was the underlying goal? Stenberg is an authority on the mystical cult at the center of Islam. Knowing former President George Bush’s wife held a volume of the poet Mawlana Jalal-ud-Din Balkhi-Rumi’s Sufi poetry on her lap in a photo session at the White House, adds an eerie sense of irony too. But this rabbit hole of strange “coincidences” has already revealed too much craziness to grasp.
The recent death of Turkish billionaire, Mustafa Koc casts a little bit of a shadow on “Neo-Sufism” as a component in all this Middle East mess too. It turns out, exiled Turkish scholar and Sufism evangelist, Fethullah Gülen met with the energy magnate in 2014. The depth and tone of that association is far too complex to deal with here, but it’s fair to consider Turkey’s role in the Syria-Arab Spring affair as emanating from such discourse. What many scholars claim is going on in Turkey, a sort of re-Islamized nation, it seems to bear up under scrutiny now. According to anti-fascist researcher, Dave Emery, the schools of Fethullah Gülen are actually more than educational entities. In fact, a good many independent researchers lay out the double agenda of Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan as part of a larger game plan drafted by Gülen, who in turn is painted as the author of a so-called “New Ottoman Empire” we hear Erdogan associated with. With the “re-Islamification” of Turkey in mind, the meetup with Turkey’s most powerful business magnate, and the Mustafa Koc’s subsequent death, take on new meaning.
Barriers to Turkey’s Re-Islamization
Consider the abandonment of the Turkish Stream Pipeline. Look at how Turkey is at war with the Kurds now. Take into account the multinationals involved in the oil business in this region. Now, consider the whole Turkey-Russia conflict going on now, and an underlying truth no mainstream newspaper has addressed yet. How did Erdogan come to power in the first place? Who stood behind? Whoever really gave the order for Turkish-NATO jets to effectively declare war on Russia, a single act—guess who?
Let’s assume for the moment that President Erdogan, Gülen, and even Mustafa Koc had similar ideas about a new Turkish Islamification, and empire in the region. Historically, the military has served as a bulwark in modern Turkey against Islamization, essentially enforcing a secular state at the point of a gun. Military officers who would not play along are in jail now. The Erdogan government effectively broke the political power of any military opposition, years ago. So the “invisible hand” that really controls Turkey has no real opposition. Also, Erdogan’s affinity for the ultra right wing Grey Wolves attests to a far greater control, and already they may have some serious blood on their hands.
One instance of there being no limits can be seen with the Turkmen commander’ who boasted of murdering the pilot of the Russian Su-24. He openly admitted to being a member of the Turkish ultra-nationalist with membership as far afield as Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Azerbaijan and Thailand. The reader can begin to glean just how deep and dark the reality of Turkey is here. As a NATO country where terrorists, gangsters, business people, and politicians share alliances with, the place author Martin A. Lee explored in 1997 is far worse today:
“Since the earliest days of the Cold War, Turkey’s strategic importance derived from its geographic position as the West’s easternmost bulwark against Soviet communism. In an effort to weaken the Soviet state, the CIA also used pan-Turkish militants to incite anti-Soviet passions among Muslim Turkish minorities inside the Soviet Union, a strategy that strengthened ties between US intelligence and Turkey’s ultra-nationalists.”
The CIA’s involvement in Turkey, naïve or complicit academic, Sufist schools of thought and ideology, and the cloak and dagger events underneath should warn us at least, that everything is not as it appears. I’ll leave you with an alarming anecdote I found while researching all this.
Declassified back in 2005, a CIA concoction called the Pan Turania Idea emerged. The plan, co-created by an unnamed German-Turkish expert, played out a scenario where a victorious Nazi Germany carve the Soviet Union into a group of puppet states based on Turanian nationalism. As crazy as this may sound, the only way western idealists think about Russia is in mincemeat fashion, where all the power and resources are fragmented for takeover. That being as it may, “Pan-Turanianism” is a British construct, one Turkish author Halide Edip Adivar wrote about in her famous novel “Yeni Turan” (The New Turan). This notion is most closely emulated in the efforts of Fethullah Gulen’s non-governmental organizations (NGOs), as well as those supported by George Soros and Freedom House, for Chechen terrorists is part of the pan-Turania concept.
I know all this is food for thought. I’ll continue with a look at the death of Mustafa Koc and the Munich Security Conference in a day or two. For now thought, the insightful among you will want to delve more deeply into such concepts as Ulrich Beck’s “Cosmopolitanism” and this Pan-Turania concept.
Phil Butler, is a policy investigator and analyst, a political scientist and expert on Eastern Europe, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.