Liberated by the West

BERLIN/BAGHDAD (Own report) – Western aggressions in the Middle East and support from the West’s important regional allies have facilitated the rise of the terrorist organization, the “Islamic State” (IS), as observers point out. According to an expert at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP), the IS predecessor, “Al-Qaida in Iraq,” was able to develop into a “powerful organization” only after the US led aggression against Iraq (“liberation from Saddam”). Not until the chaos provoked by the war in Syria, which Germany also helped fuel (“liberation from Assad”) was the IS predecessor the “Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant” (ISIL) in a position to conquer and control whole regions and set up a power base for its further expansion. IS could not have reached its current strength without the financial and logistical support furnished by Saudi Arabia and Turkey, two close allies of the West. The SWP reports that there are even “indications” that “the cross-border traffic between the IS-controlled territory in Syria and Turkey” is still “considerable” – thus also, presumably, the transport of supplies. Meanwhile Western governments are preparing a “long military operation” against IS.

The Destruction of Iraq

The blood-soaked conquest by the “Islamic State” (IS) terrorist organization is the culmination of a development, which is intimately linked to western interventions in the Middle East, beginning on March 20, 2003 with the US-led aggression against and the ensuing destruction of Iraq. The number of casualties is still being disputed. Already in 2006, a study by the prestigious medical journal “The Lancet” estimated the number at 655,000. Critical observers assume that, in the meantime, the number of casualties has reached a million.[1] The breakdown of social structures has provoked the rise of violence in the country, with no end in sight. In 2003, Germany had publicly opposed the aggression against Iraq. In the meantime, it has been made known that Berlin was actually assisting the US led war coalition in various ways. The German intelligence agency BND, for example, had furnished its US counterparts an alleged witness of the existence of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction (“Curveball”), whose bogus testimony served to legitimize going to war against Iraq.[2] During the war, the BND was present in Baghdad, providing important intelligence to the western alliance.[3] US troops were using bases in Germany for their war, as German soldiers mounted the guard at US barracks relieving US combat units. Therefore, Germany has its share of responsibility for Iraq’s destruction.

The Destruction of Syria

As in Iraq, the Syrian society has also suffered an extreme devastation through the war, which began in 2011 and has already caused 170,000 deaths and up to ten million refugees. Berlin has been supporting this war with extensive political, intelligence and humanitarian assistance for the insurgents ((german-foreign-policy.com reported [4]). This assistance was provided, even though critics had warned, from the outset, that it could be a contribution toward that country’s destruction, the strengthening of Salafist militias, and even possibly terrorists. Already in early February 2012, the Greek-Melkite Archbishop of Aleppo warned that many “extremists” were among the numerous mercenaries, “from Turkey, Iraq, Libya or Pakistan infiltrating to Syria,” and sowing “death and horror.”[5] This has not been preventing the West, including Germany, from fuelling the war with their support of the insurgents.

Financed by Saudi Arabia

Whereas, Western aggression against Iraq and the Western instigation fueling the Syrian war have initially paved the way for the IS, it was however, the West’s close allies, which provided the material prerequisites for stabilizing its rule. This pertains, for example, to Saudi Arabia. Experts have often pointed to the fact that – like the Riyadh government – sectors of the Saudi establishment are supporting, or have at least been supporting, Salafist militias, in general, but also special Salafist terrorist groups, such as the Al Nusra Front and the ISIL. Their objective is to eliminate the Shiite forces in Syria, Lebanon and Iraq. This is, in fact, aimed at current or potential partners cooperating with Iran, to facilitate establishing Saudi hegemony over the Middle East. “While the fighters” of ISIS or IS “come from many Arab and European countries, a majority of the financial aid, religious guidance, and training come from Saudi Arabia and Kuwait,” reported Tel Aviv’s Institute for National Security Studies (INSS) in February 2014. Riyadh’s ruling clan is turning a blind eye “to reap the short term gain in the war against the Shiite axis.”[7]

Support from Turkey

Turkey has also provided important assistance to the ISIL. Since early 2012, the country has become “a principal channel for the flow of people, arms, and logistical assistance” initially to the Al Nusra Front, as the prestigious US magazine “Foreign Affairs” confirmed in June 2014.[8] According to SWP-expert Guido Steinberg, the Turkish government “gratefully received foreign combatants” to “weaken the Assad regime and the local PKK offshoot in Syria” – Kurdish units, currently engaged in heavy combat with the IS. Turkey was “actually cooperating with the Islamist Nusra Front until early 2013,” and there are even “indications” that “the cross-border traffic between IS-controlled territory in Syria and Turkey” is still “considerable.”[9] It has been reported that the IS has trucked Syrian oil to sell it in Turkey. The Turkish intelligence service is said to even deliver arms to IS.[10]

Full article: Liberated by the West (German Foreign Policy)

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