[Marxism] Mike Whitney must be having an orgasm right now

Sheldon Ranz sranz18 at gmail.com
Wed Oct 7 10:50:06 MDT 2015


Don't insult orgasms!

On Wed, Oct 7, 2015 at 11:49 AM, Louis Proyect via Marxism <
marxism at lists.csbs.utah.edu> wrote:

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> NY Times, Oct. 7 2015
> Escalating Syria Attack, Russia Fires Missiles From Warships
> By ANNE BARNARD and ANDREW E. KRAMER
>
> BEIRUT, Lebanon — The Russian military, sharply escalating its military
> intervention in Syria, launched 26 medium-range cruise missiles on
> Wednesday from four warships in the Caspian Sea, while providing air
> support for a ground offensive by pro-government forces.
>
> Russian officials said the missiles — which traveled more than 900 miles,
> through Iranian and Iraqi airspace — struck 11 targets in Syria, but they
> did not specify which groups were hit.
>
> It was not clear whether the missile strike was coordinated with the
> ground offensive, which was reported by antigovernment activists and
> insurgents around the central province of Hama, as well as by the
> television station of Hezbollah, an ally of Syria’s based in Lebanon.
>
> The Kremlin would not confirm that a ground offensive had begun, though a
> spokeswoman for the Foreign Ministry, Maria V. Zakharova, said that
> “coordination is taking place with the Syrian Army, that is unequivocal.”
>
> The news of the missile attack came via a televised meeting between the
> Russian defense minister, Sergei K. Shoigu, and President Vladimir V.
> Putin. “That we fired from the territory of the Caspian Sea, at a range
> greater than 1,500 kilometers, and hit targets precisely, this shows high
> qualifications,” Mr. Putin said, referring to naval crew members. Mr.
> Shoigu said that no civilians had been injured in the assault.
>
> The ground offensive in Syria is taking place in coordination with Russian
> warplanes operating from an airfield in western Syria, and the offensive
> will include the Syrian Army, Hezbollah forces on the ground and Russian
> air power, all in coordination with Iran, according to an official with
> that alliance.
>
> Although the offensive remains in its early stages, it is significant
> because it is the beginning of a wider, coordinated assault that reveals
> close collaboration between Syria and its main allies — Hezbollah, Iran and
> Russia — the official said, speaking on the condition of anonymity because
> the parties had not detailed the coordination of military strategy.
>
> The assault aims to push back gains early this year by an insurgent
> coalition, the Army of Conquest, that threated the government-held coastal
> province of Latakia, crucial territory for the Syrian government, the
> official said, adding that it was the first time since those setbacks in
> the spring that government forces had moved “from defense to offense.”
>
> The ground operation will eventually include new contingents of fighters
> from Hezbollah, a Shiite militia that has long played a crucial role on the
> front lines, as well as Syrian forces backed by Russians in the air,
> according to the official. In addition, Iranian military advisers have long
> been active on the ground in Syria and would most likely be involved in
> such a crucial operation.
>
> Speaking in tones of new confidence and optimism, the official called the
> Russian intervention a game-changing development that put to rest any
> doubts about Russia’s commitment to Syria’s president, Bashar al-Assad, who
> has managed to cling to power despite a civil war that is now in its fifth
> year.
>
> The ground offensive aims to push insurgents out of high ground that
> threatens the rear of Latakia, first in northern Hama Province, where
> Wednesday’s attacks took place, and later moving north into Idlib Province,
> according to the official and to diplomats and analysts in the region.
> Likely targets include Jabal al-Zawiya, a mountainous area that insurgents
> have held for years, and Jisr al-Shughour, a city in Idlib Province whose
> capture by insurgents in March was considered an ominous sign for the
> government.
>
> Russian officials have said since the beginning of their air war that they
> were targeting Islamic State militants, even when bombs fell on territories
> held by other insurgent groups that oppose Mr. Assad, including in areas
> where witnesses reported seeing heavy bombardments on Wednesday.
>
> The strikes have hit the Army of Conquest, an Islamist faction that
> includes the Nusra Front, Al Qaeda’s Syrian affiliate, as well as more
> secular groups that often fight alongside, including some that have
> received American aid. Russia has so far refused to make a distinction
> between the Army of Conquest and the Islamic State, labeling both groups
> terrorists.
>
> It was not immediately clear which groups in Syria, if any, were struck by
> the Russian medium-range missiles.
>
> Russian diplomats, Ms. Zakharova said, have asked the United States to
> identify armed groups other than units of the Syrian Army that are fighting
> the Islamic State and that should be avoided in airstrikes, but she said
> they had received no answer.
>
> “If there are some forces that also have weapons in their hands and are on
> the ground fighting, as the coalition says, with the Islamic State, and
> they should not be touched, then wonderful,” Ms. Zakharova said. “Give the
> list, give the call signs of these people. Tell us where are they located,
> explain why they shouldn’t be touched. Indeed, this information is not
> provided.”
>
> Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter, asked about the new Syrian ground
> offensive in coordination with Russian airstrikes, lamented “the Assad
> regime’s use of violence against its own people.”
>
> Mr. Carter added that “to the extent that Russia enables that, that’s the
> fundamental reason we believe Russia is making a mistake in their actions
> in Syria.”
>
> He took issue with what he said were suggestions in the news media that
> the United States was cooperating with Russia on Syria, and said that the
> only exchanges that the Pentagon and the Russian military could have on
> Syria at the moment were technical talks on how to steer clear of each
> other’s way in the skies above the country — so-called deconfliction talks.
>
> “What we will do is continue basic technical discussions on safety
> procedures for our pilots over Syria,” Mr. Carter said, appearing at a news
> conference in Rome with Defense Minister Roberta Pinotti of Italy. “That’s
> it.”
>
> NATO has repeatedly warned Russia — so far, to little effect — that its
> military intervention will only worsen the situation on the ground.
> Officials with the Atlantic alliance did not have an immediate response to
> the cruise missile deployment on Wednesday, but pointed to earlier remarks
> by its secretary general, Jens Stoltenberg.
>
> “I can confirm that we have seen a substantial buildup of Russian forces
> in Syria,” Mr. Stoltenberg said at a news conference on Monday. “Air
> forces, air defenses, but also then ground troops in connection with the
> air base they have.”
>
> He continued: “We also see increased naval presence of Russian ships,
> naval capabilities outside Syria or the eastern part of the Mediterranean.”
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