TURKISH warplanes have shot down a Russian jet which they claim flew into the country’s airspace.
By Alix Culbertson
PUBLISHED: 08:14, Tue, Nov 24, 2015 | UPDATED: 14:04, Tue, Nov 24, 2015 Getty
The plane crashed in Syria after violating Turkey’s airspace, the country claims
The aircraft was shot down after it was warned 10 times in five minutes to leave Turkish airspace, a Turkish military official has said.
It was just over the Syrian border in Turkey when it was downed by F16 Fighting Falcon jets belonging to Turkey, the official added.
But Russian President Vladimir Putin said the plane was 4km into Syria and had not violated Turkey’s airspace as it flew at an altitude of 6,000 metres – and claimed it was shot down from the ground not the air.
NATO has announced it will be holding an extraordinary session at 4pm GMT in Brussels after Turkey requested it following the incident.
Unverified sources have claimed Russia is currently sending a warship across the Dardenelles from the Black Sea into the Mediterranean.
Mr Putin said the pilots did not threaten anyone and the incident will have “serious consequences” for Turkish-Russian relations as he called it a “stab in the back”.
The president added: “Large amounts of oil from militants go to and through Turkey.”
The incident is the first time a Russian or Soviet plane has been shot down by a NATO member since the 1950s.
It would be wrong to talk about consequences and relations between Russia and Turkey at the moment
Two pilots managed to eject from the jet and were seen landing with the help of parachutes.
The jet is reported to be a Russian Su-24 flown by a pair of Russian pilots, with one believed to have been captured by Syrian rebels from the Alweya Al-Ashar (Brigade of the 10th) which consists of Turkmen with strong links to Turkey.
He was initially thought to be alive but rebels have now said they have recovered both pilots’ bodies.
The second pilot is believed to have died in the crash after footage was released by Syrian rebels appearing to show them crowding around a body saying “Allahu Akbar” – God is Great in Arabic.
Russia is currently fighting in Syria with President Bashar al-Assad’s troops against the rebels and Islamic State (ISIS).
Sources say the brigade has now launched “a counter-offensive” against President Bashar and Russian troops in a bid to take back the Turkman mountains.
Russian plane shot down over Turkey
Tue, November 24, 2015
A Russian Su-24 fighter jet has been shot out of the sky over the Turkish-Syrian border.
Turkish presidential sources have said the jet was downed in line with the rules of engagement after violating the country’s airspace and failing to heed warnings.
He said the pilot was warned 10 times before they deployed the F16s to shoot it down.
A government official said: “We are trying to identify the nationality of the plane.”
The Turkish military released the flight radar they say is from the Russian jet they shot
Russia’s foreign minister Sergy Lavrov was expected to land in Istanbul at 4.30pm today – the same time as the urgent NATO meeting – ahead of talks with the Turkish government tomorrow, but so far there is no indication he will be leaving Moscow soon as he is in meetings with Mr Putin.
The Kremlin’s deputy speaker said while the world is grouping together against Islamic State, Turkey is helping them.
He said: “Turkey demonstrates it’s solidarity with the terrorists.”
The Kremlin called it a “very serious incident” but said it is too early to draw firm conclusions.
Video footage shows a plane exploding in the air before the fireball fell onto a Turkmen mountain near a village on the northern Syrian side of the border.
British foreign secretary, Philip Hammond, said: “Clearly this is a serious incident but it wouldn’t be wise to comment further until we have the facts.”
A Downing Street spokesman added: “We will continue to work closely with the Turks and we will stand by the offers of support we have made to them already.”
One of the Russian pilots has been captured by Syrian rebels
The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group said the warplane crashed in a mountainous area in the northern countryside of Latakia province.
The fate of the crew was unknown, the Observatory said, adding there had been aerial bombardment in the area earlier, where pro-government forces have been battling insurgents on the ground.
While fears have arisen over the consequences of the downed plane, the European Council’s President, Donald Tusk, tweeted: “In this dangerous moment after downing of Russian jet, all should remain cool headed and calm.”
The Russian fighter jet went over a small section of Turkey, according to the Turkish military
Turkey called this week for a U.N. Security Council meeting to discuss attacks on Turkmens in neighboring Syria, and last week Ankara summoned the Russian ambassador to protest the bombing of their villages.
Ankara has traditionally expressed solidarity with Syrian Turkmens, who are Syrians of Turkish descent.
About 1,700 people have fled the mountainous Syrian area to the Turkish border as a result of fighting in the last three days, a Turkish official said on Monday.
Russian jets have bombed the area in support of ground operations by Syrian government forces.
Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu’s office said he had spoken with the chief of military staff and the foreign minister about developments on the border, but did not mention the downed jet.
He instructed them to consult with NATO and the UN on the latest developments on the Syrian border.
Turkey has continually warned Russia and Syria not to edge into their airspace, and has said them it would shoot any planes violating that.
In October, when Russian planes flew into Turkish airspace two days in a row, NATO – of which Turkey is a leading member – released a statement which said: “Allies strongly protest these violations of Turkish sovereign airspace, and condemn these incursions into and violations of NATO airspace. Allies also note the extreme danger of such irresponsible behaviour.
“They call on the Russian Federation to cease and desist, and immediately explain these violations.
“Allies call on the Russian side to take all necessary measures to ensure that such violations do not take place in the future.”
The Sukhoi SU-24 is a supersonic, all weather attack aircraft developed in Russia. The aircraft features avariable-sweep wing, twin-engines and a side-by-side seating arrangement for its two crew.
It was the first of Russia’s aircraft to carry an integrated digital navigation and attack system.
Category: Kings of the East
TURKISH warplanes have shot down a Russian jet which they claim flew into the country’s airspace.
Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=7625
Thermonuclear missile launch near Los Angeles is final sign of World War III on the precipice… US, China and Russia all escalating covert attacks in run up to global war
Sunday, November 08, 2015
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger
(NaturalNews) “A mysterious bright light in the sky has sent Californians into panic,” reports the BBC. “Videos posted online show a bright flare rising high, before a wide, bright blue flash emerges in a cone shape. Many videos continue to track the light for several minutes.”
Last night, Californians immediately leapt to social media to propose their theories of the phenomenon, ranging from a nuclear missile attack to meteors. “Law agencies and news media in San Diego were flooded with calls about 6 p.m. from people reporting everything from a flare to a comet to a nuclear bomb in the western sky,” reports the San Diego Union Tribune.
Just a day earlier, the FAA had issued flight restrictions for the Los Angeles International Airport, denying aircraft access to one of the most frequent approach paths for international and domestic travel.
The official explanation is a lie
The “official” explanation of this event — and remember that “official” explanations are almost always cover stories — is that the U.S. Navy launched a test missile just because they “routinely” test missiles.
“Media in California confirmed that the light came from an unarmed Trident missile fired from the USS Kentucky navy submarine,” reports the BBC. While they call the missile “unarmed,” they fail to mention that the Trident missile normally carries a thermonuclear warhead. There’s also no way for the media to know whether this missile was really unarmed or not, as the sole source on that question is the U.S. Navy itself.
Apparently the media thinks the public is so incredibly stupid that they’ll believe the U.S. Navy has nowhere else to launch a test missile other than right next to Los Angeles. Somehow we’re supposed to believe the entire Pacific Ocean won’t work for such a test launch, so they have to launch it adjacent to the airport and thereby inconvenience commercial aviation traffic for an entire week.
Obviously, the official cover story is pure bunk. So what’s the real story behind this? It all has to do with China and the covert war that’s already underway between China, the US and Russia.
China’s military submarines are a huge threat to U.S. national security
To get up to speed on what’s really happening, read this report from the Congressional Research Service (PDF) found at http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/row/RL33153.pdf
Authored by Ronald O’Rourke, Specialist in Naval Affairs, and just released on Sep. 21, 2015, the report is entitled, “China Naval Modernization: Implications for U.S. Navy Capabilities.”
The report states:
China is building a modern and regionally powerful navy with a limited but growing capability for conducting operations beyond China’s near-seas region. Observers of Chinese and U.S. military forces view China’s improving naval capabilities as posing a potential challenge in the Western Pacific to the U.S. Navy’s ability to achieve and maintain control of blue-water ocean areas in wartime — the first such challenge the U.S. Navy has faced since the end of the Cold War.
China’s naval modernization effort encompasses a broad array of platform and weapon acquisition programs, including anti-ship ballistic missiles (ASBMs), anti-ship cruise missiles (ASCMs), submarines, surface ships, aircraft, and supporting C4ISR (command and control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance) systems.
The most important section of this report, in my assessment, is this description of China’s ship-killing ballistic missiles:
China is fielding an ASBM, referred to as the DF-21D, that is a theater-range ballistic missile equipped with a maneuverable reentry vehicle (MaRV) designed to hit moving ships at sea. DOD states that China continues to field an ASBM based on a variant of the CSS-5 (DF-21) MRBM that it began deploying in 2010. This missile provides the PLA the capability to attack aircraft carriers in the western Pacific. The CSS-5 Mod 5 has a range exceeding 1,500 km [about 810 nm] and is armed with a maneuverable warhead.
China, in other words, has weapons capable of destroying U.S. aircraft carriers, destroyers and other ships. The 1,500 km range is key because it allows a very wide operational range.
Just recently in August, the Chinese and Russians held their largest naval joint exercise in history as a way to “counter U.S. influence in Asia.” As reported by Collapse.news:
The Russian and Chinese navies are set to hold their largest joint exercises ever, featuring scores of warships, hundreds of troops and an amphibious landing, in what appears to be a deepening of ties meant to counter a rising U.S. military presence in Asia.
In September, Chinese warships were spotted operating near the coast of Alaska. This was reported across the mainstream media, including in the Wall Street Journal in an article entitled, “Five Chinese Navy Ships Are Operating in Bering Sea off Alaska.”
Fox News also covered the same story: “5 Chinese warships spotted off Alaska coast during President Obama’s visit.”
In response to that territorial provocation, the U.S. Navy sent the USS Lassen destroyer to within 12 nautical miles of China’s newly-constructed military bases in the Spratly Islands.
China’s communist government openly condemned the act as a provocation of war. From the Straits Times:
China claims most of the South China Sea and on Oct 9 its Foreign Ministry warned that Beijing would “never allow any country to violate China’s territorial waters and airspace in the Spratly Islands, in the name of protecting freedom of navigation and overflight.”
Secret space weapon attacks on China’s industrial infrastructure
This is all on top of the Pentagon’s secret space weapon attacks on China’s industrial infrastructure.
As I wrote on August 17 of this year, Natural News was informed by mainland Chinese dissidents that they believe the string of mysterious industrial explosions such as the massive Tianjin explosion was caused by kinetic strikes from orbital platform weapons operated by the United States.
China then retaliated by covertly destroying a U.S. weapons depot in Tokyo, using old-school sabotage techniques. Two additional industrial explosions in China soon followed.
Taiwan surrenders to China with insane “One China” admission by President Ma
China’s war of aggression is also in high gear on the geopolitical side, with China pressuring Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou to publicly state yesterday that Taiwan is now part of China!
A massive cultural backlash in Taiwan is now surging, as most of the country’s citizens do not want to be part of communist China. Taiwan’s DPP party is rapidly rising to prominence on the platform of Taiwan as a sovereign nation, but China remains in an aggressive military stance, always threatening Taiwan with an armed invasion if Taiwan attempts to “secede” from China. (Taiwan’s GMT party, which is a “pro-China” party, has been plagued by an endless stream of scandals and corruption.)
From Channel News Asia: “Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou emphasised the island must continue to uphold the 1992 Consensus with China’s Communist Party in order to promote cross-strait relations and development, as he marked the 22nd anniversary of the historic talks between Taipei and Beijing in Singapore.”
Taiwan is a critical strategic island for U.S. influence over the Pacific naval theater of operations. Taiwan’s airports and military basis provide key strategic locations for staging U.S. aircraft and even bombers if conflict breaks out with China.
As you ponder all this, keep in mind that Taiwan’s media giants have all been infiltrated and taken over by communist China. The Taiwan media is now China’s state-run media. Only small, independent websites can be trusted to report the truth.
The Trident missile launch near Los Angeles was a warning shot against China in a last-ditch effort to prevent all-out war
The upshot of all this is that the U.S. and China have been engaged in a covert war for quite some time, and that covert war has escalated month by month, even as the official state-run news organizations of both nations have denied any war is happening at all.
Last night’s test launch of the Trident missile over Orange County was staged near a high population area for a tactical reason: To have as many witnesses (and videos) as possible, sending a very visible warning message to China that says, “We can destroy you if you don’t back off.”
The Trident missile, built by Lockheed Martin, is a thermonuclear missile system (Fleet Ballistic Missile) with a range of at least 4,000 nautical miles. See the Trident missile page on the U.S. Navy website. Just one Trident missile launched from somewhere in the Pacific Ocean could devastate China with a nuclear strike on Beijing.
The U.S. Navy’s “showcasing” of the Trident missile near Los Angeles is a $31 million billboard that tells China, “Don’t f–k with us.”
Nobody in the mainstream media is report this; probably because, with a few exceptions, they are mostly clueless, brain-dead propagandists who know nothing about international geopolitics and the real state of conflict in our world. Also, they are ordered what to write by the U.S. government regime in exactly the same way China’s “journalists” are ordered what to write by the Chinese regime.
Right now, the United States and China are in an undeclared state of war. China stands ready to strike the USA with nuclear warheads or high altitude EMP weapons that would destroy the U.S. power grid and cause 90% casualties across the unprepared population. Legendary American journalist Ted Koppel has even written a book about this entitled Lights Out: A Cyberattack, A Nation Unprepared, Surviving the Aftermath.
China and Russia preparing massive first strike against America
Many people believe that China and Russia are working together to prepare for a massive first strike against the United States that would cripple its defenses and economy. Following that first strike, a land invasion would commence using Russian troops.
Supporting this theory, Russian submarines have been spotted near undersea internet cables in an obvious effort to document their whereabouts so that the cables can be instantly severed, unleashing a devastating blow to the U.S. economy, Wall Street and even military communications. “Russian submarines and spy ships are aggressively operating near the vital undersea cables that carry almost all global Internet communications, raising concerns among some American military and intelligence officials that the Russians might be planning to attack those lines in times of conflict,” reports WND.com. ” In times of tension or conflict, the ultimate Russian hack on the United States could involve severing the fiber-optic cables at some of their hardest-to-access locations to halt the instant communications on which the West’s governments, economies and citizens have grown dependent.”
At the same time a new Russian “drone sub” has been created that can strike U.S. coastal cities and harbors with nuclear weapons. Writing on NationalSecurity.news, Jon Dougherty states, “According to officials, the developmental unmanned underwater vehicle, or UUV, when it is deployed, will be outfitted with megaton-class nuclear warheads that can destroy key ports used by U.S. nuclear-armed and powered submarines like Kings Bay, Georgia, and Puget Sound in Washington state.”
The ultimate pre-emptive strike on America: EMP attack, cyber attack, currency wars and bandwidth blackouts
If you put the pieces of the puzzle together, what’s really shaping up here is a massive, multi-layered pre-emptive strike against America, an empire seen by the rest of the world as an insane bully that meddles with everything on the international stage. This first strike, combining the forces and expertise of both China and Russia, may consist of:
• High-altitude EMP detonation over North America, destroying regional power grids.
• A devastating currency war initiated by China announcing its own gold-backed currency while dumping U.S. Treasury debt on the open market.
• A Russian-led severing of undersea fiber optic cables.
• Russian-launched nuclear missiles targeting U.S. coastal cities.
• China-led assault on U.S. Navy warships using anti-ship ballistic missiles (ASBMs).
• A cyber warfare attack on key U.S. infrastructure, including water delivery systems, nuclear power plants and the power grid.
As all this is going on, the Obama administration — a treasonous regime of criminals who have seized control of the U.S. government in an effort to destroy America from within — has been firing all the top military commanders who know how to survive such an assault. Instead of America’s military focusing on how to win wars, troops are now subjected to sensitivity training and the politically correct push for female troops on the front lines.
This is not fiction. Even the U.S. White House is now openly preparing for a massive EMP attack launched by China.
Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=7588
Three Chinese Warships To Dock In Florida Next Month After China Called Obama’s South China Seas Bluff – Is This A Prelude To Invasion?
By Stefan Stanford – All News Pipeline – Live Free Or Die
Despite the fact that the US and China are seemingly bumping heads on many different fronts including the financial world, the internet and in the world of war, China will be sending 3 warships to the US that will be docking in Florida at the Mayport Naval Station from November 3rd to November 7th according to this story from Zero Hedge and the 1st video below from Spiro.
The ‘battlefields’ now in play include China seeking to make the yuan a permanent replacement for the dollar as the world’s reserve currency, to the internet, where China continues its’ endless attacks upon the US, to a potential WW3, where China recently responded to plans by the US to send warships into the South China Seas by saying: “What On Earth Makes Them Think We Will Tolerate This”.
With the recent announcement that China’s ally Russia has been disturbing the US with their ships near our underwater cables, we have to ask how close we are to a potential WW3 and why would we allow warships from our potential WW3 adversaries into our harbors? Is this a setup for an invasion? We also need to remember that only a little over a month ago, China released a very disturbing video that showed China attacking the US as shared in the 2nd video below.
According to the US Naval Intelligence, the three ships that will be docking in Florida are a Type 052C Luyang II-class guided-missile destroyer Jinan (152), the Type 054A Jiangkai II-class guided-missile frigate Yiyang (548) and the Type 903 Fuchi-class fleet oiler Qiandao Hu (886).
While we’re told that sailors from both the US and Chinese will interact during their time here, participating in sporting events and interacting during ship tours, the visit isn’t sitting well with some politicians in the US, especially after Barack Obama seemingly had his bluff called by China after threatening to send ships to the South China Seas by not following up upon his threat. From Zero Hedge.:
The most interesting news is that according to the US Naval Institute, despite much posturing, the Obama administration has not yet dispatched ship toward China, and instead has been merely weighing for weeks whether or not it will send a freedom of navigation mission within 12 nautical miles — the internationally recognized maritime border — of features in the Spratly and Paracel China has reclaimed from the sea.
It would appear that Obama was once again all talk and once China threatened to call the U.S. bluff and warned it would use force, the US desire for confrontation promptly evaporated.
Why is the US allowing China warships to dock in Florida? Is this a setup for a massive attack upon America or another false flag? The mere fact that Russian warships have been spotted near our underwater cables is understandably disturbing. We learned from the NY Times story on this development that if those cables are cut, that would likely completely cut off the US from the rest of the world on the communications front. Think no more internet , no more phones, no communications between our military at home and our military overseas. Have Russia and China put the US into ‘checkmate’ as argued in this story from Sputnik News? While we do not have all of the answers to those questions, these latest developments are clearly bothersome. From the NY Times story.:
Russian submarines and spy ships are aggressively operating near the vital undersea cables that carry almost all global Internet communications, raising concerns among some American military and intelligence officials that the Russians might be planning to attack those lines in times of tension or conflict.
The issue goes beyond old worries during the Cold War that the Russians would tap into the cables — a task American intelligence agencies also mastered decades ago. The alarm today is deeper: The ultimate Russian hack on the United States could involve severing the fiber-optic cables at some of their hardest-to-access locations to halt the instant communications on which the West’s governments, economies and citizens have grown dependent.
Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=7549
The United States is considering sailing warships close to China’s artificial islands in the South China Sea to signal it does not recognize Chinese territorial claims over the area, a U.S. defense official said on Thursday.
The Financial Times newspaper cited a senior U.S. official as saying U.S. ships would sail within 12-nautical-mile zones, that China claims as territory around islands it has built in the Spratly chain, within the next two weeks.
The Navy Times quoted U.S. officials as saying the action could take place “within days,” but awaited final approval from the Obama administration.
A U.S. defense official declined to confirm that any decision had been made, but referred to remarks in congressional testimony last month by U.S. Assistant Defense Secretary David Shear, that “all options are on the table.”
“We are looking at this,” the official said, on condition of anonymity.
U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter said last month, in reference to China’s South ChinaSea claims, that the United States would “fly, sail, and operate wherever international law allows, as U.S. forces do all over the world.”
The White House declined to comment on potential classified naval operations.
In May, the Chinese navy issued eight warnings to the crew of a U.S. P8-A Poseidon surveillance aircraft when it conducted flights near China’s artificial islands, according to CNN, which was aboard the U.S. aircraft.
CHINA WATCHING CLOSELY
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told a regular news briefing on Thursday that China was paying attention to the reports of impending U.S. naval action, and that it and the United States have maintained “extremely thorough communication” on the South China Sea issue.
“I believe the U.S. side is extremely clear about China’s relevant principled stance,” she said. “We hope the U.S. side can objectively and fairly view the current situation in the South China Sea, and with China, genuinely play a constructive role in safeguarding peace and stability in the South China Sea.”
U.S. President Barack Obama said he told Chinese President Xi Jinping he had “significant concerns” about the islands when Xi made his first state visit to Washington late in September.
Xi said at the time that China intended to militarize the islands, but Washington analysts and U.S. officials say China has already begun creating military facilities, and the only question is how much military hardware it will install.
Admiral Harry Harris, commander of U.S. forces in the Pacific, has said China’s development of the islands, including the building of runways suitable for military use, was of “great concern” and a threat to the region.
In congressional testimony on Sept. 17, Harris said the United States should challenge China’s claim to territory in the South China Sea by patrolling close to the artificial islands and was considering going within 12 miles of them.
China claims most of the South China Sea, where the Spratly islands are located and $5 trillion in ship-borne trade passes every year. The Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan also have overlapping claims.
Philippine military officials have said that China has repeatedly warned Philippine military aircraft away from the artificial islands in the Spratly archipelago.
Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=7518
The notion of the Islamic State / Caliphate announced by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi should be viewed as a preview for what the neo-Ottoman Turks want – a Caliphate that will dwarf al-Baghdadi’s version. When it comes to the Ottoman Caliphate these Turks wish to resurrect, there is absolutely an eye on northwestern China.
In particular, the Uyghurs who are concentrated in the northwest region of China known as Xinjiang to the Chinese and East Turkestan to the Uyghurs, are increasingly joining the Islamic State according to a Chinese news report:
Chinese citizens have joined Islamic State, the country’s state media said, as China sought to offer further evidence that its domestic security problems are a global concern.
Radicals from Xinjiang have joined the terror group to receive training in Iraq, Syria and elsewhere in Asia, China’s Communist-run Global Times newspaper said in a report Monday. Xinjiang is the sprawling region in China’s northwest that is home to the restive Uyghurs, a largely Muslim population whose freedoms China has heavily restricted in response to a string of deadly attacks it blames on Uyghur terrorists.
By announcing that its citizens have joined Islamic State, China echoed fears expressed by Western countries – that the violence in the Middle East poses a domestic threat because foreign-trained fighters could return to mount attacks in their home countries.
Until now, China has not offered any assistance to the U.S.-led campaign against IS and its sole reaction to the chaos in Syria and Iraq has been to withdraw its citizens. Chinese officials routinely say they do not interfere with the affairs of other nations. But China, as one of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, may now face pressure to get more involved in global counterterrorism efforts.
The Uyghur history is steeped in connections to Turkey; they are considered a Turkic ethnic group and speak the Turkish language. The neo-Ottomans in the highest levels of Turkey’s current government, to include new President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and new Prime Minister Ahmed Davutoglu, have demonstrated staunch support for the Uyghurs. In fact, that support has been a source of strain between China and Turkey in recent years.
Earlier this year, the World Uyghur Congress applauded Turkey’s call for a transparent investigation into Uyghur deaths at the hands of the Chinese government. The last two paragraphs of this article give China’s version of events:
The violence erupted on July 28 – the last day of Ramadan, during which the Chinese government banned government employees and children from fasting.
According to Xinhua, the Chinese state news agency, since the beginning of the holy month the “mob” had had many gatherings in remote places, during which time they made plans for attacks and prepared tools for violent acts.
In light of reports today that Uyghurs are joining the Islamic State, China was most likely dealing with ISIS-minded terrorists. Yet, Turkey was siding with the Uyghurs. Here is how the article opened:
The World Uyghur Congress has praised Turkey’s call on China for a transparent investigation into recent reports of violence in Xinjiang’s Uyghur Autonomous Region.
China revealed that 37 civilians were killed in a disturbance and another 13 injured after a mob attacked a police station and government offices on July 28.
However, a lack of independent monitors in the region has raised suspicions that the death toll could have been much higher, according to Seyit Tumturk, the vice president of the World Uyghur Congress.
In 2012, as a Chinese circus was taking place in Turkey, a gaggle of malcontents ran through the stands waving Turkish and Uyghur flags:
Also in 2012, Erdogan and Davutoglu visited the Uyghurs in Xingxang / East Turkistan and were “greeted like rock stars”. A video that chronicled the visit features the image of a skyward looking Erdogan sailing over a field of white flowers:
The strain between China and Turkey over the Uyghurs is not new but there have been attempts to mitigate it based on economic concerns:
After relations deteriorated between Beijing and Ankara in 2009 over Turkish officials’ criticism of China’s crackdown on riots in Uighur Muslim-dominated Xinjiang province, relations have improved, in large part because of a shift in attitude on the Uighur issue by both governments.
Turkey, hoping to expand its influence in Central Asia, has avoided sharp rhetorical condemnation of Chinese government actions, and Beijing, hoping to attract Turkish investment and desiring a new approach less likely to spark ethnic unrest in the future, has made several policy shifts of its own…
…China’s relationship with Xinjiang’s predominantly Muslim Uighurs has long been fraught due to the strategic significance of Xinjiang on the Chinese border. After riots broke out in 2009 between Uighurs and ethnic Han Chinese in Urumqi and the Chinese government cracked down, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan condemned the situation as “violence” and “almost genocide,” while Turkish Trade and Industry Minister Nihat Ergun called for a boycott of Chinese goods. Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Zhai Jun rebuffed Erdogan’s remarks as “irresponsible,” and relations between Ankara and Beijing deteriorated.
As reports of Uyghurs joining the ranks of the Islamic State grow, acts of terrorism in the region can expect to grow as well. Should Turkey continue to defend the Uyghurs, the relationship between it and China can be expected to deteriorate.
Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=6696
By Bill Gertz, The Washington Times
Friday, July 4, 2014
“A large outdoor model of a next generationnuclear attack submarine [SSN] has appeared at the People’s Liberation Army Navy [PLAN] submarine academy in Qingdao, China,” Mr. Fisher stated in a report published by the International Assessment and Strategy Center, a think tank.
“The role of this model may simply be to inspire the academy’s students, but it may signify a larger personnel investmentby the PLAN to prepare for its next generation submarines, as it may also offer some indications about a new class of SSN,” he said, referring to the military acronym for attack submarines
Photos of the model were first published in April during a Chinese naval conference, and Mr. Fisher said the Chinese have long used such photos of mock-up weapons as political messages for both domestic and foreign audiences.
The mock-up could be the first peek at China’s Type-095 attack submarine — the second nuclear-powered attack submarine being built by the Chinese after its current Type-093.
In addition to the attack subs, the Chinese also are building two new ballistic missile submarines, the Type-094 and Type-096.
The Pentagon in its latest annual report on China’s military said currently two Type-093s are deployed and four improved Type-093s will be fielded in the next five years.
However, Mr. Fisher said Asia military sources have indicated that in addition to the six Type-093s, two new Type-095s could be deployed by 2020.
Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=6501
Many people find it hard to understand why China is acting the way it is in the East and South China Seas. What does Beijing hope to achieve by alienating its neighbors and undermining regional stability?
Let me suggest an answer: China is trying to build what President Xi Jinping calls “a new model of great power relations.” To understand how this might be the aim of Beijing’s actions, we have to recognize that under his “new model,” Xi wants China to wield much more power and influence in Asia than it has for the past few centuries. These things are inherently zero-sum, so for China to have more power and influence, America must have less. This is what Xi and his colleagues are trying to achieve.
Their reasoning is simple enough. They know that America’s position in Asia is built on its network of alliances and partnerships with many of China’s neighbors. They believe that weakening these relationships is the easiest way to weaken U.S. regional power. And they know that, beneath the flowery diplomatic phrases, the bedrock of these alliances and partnerships is the confidence America’s Asian friends have that America is able and willing to protect them from China’s power.
So the easiest way for Beijing to weaken Washington’s power in Asia is to undermine this confidence. And the easiest way to do that is for Beijing to press those friends and allies hard on issues in which America’s own interests are not immediately engaged — like a string of maritime disputes in which the U.S. has no direct stake.
By using direct armed pressure in these disputes, China makes its neighbors more eager for U.S. military support, and at the same time makes America less willing to give it, because of the clear risk of a direct U.S.-China clash. In other words, by confronting America’s friends with force, China confronts America with the choice between deserting its friends and fighting China. Beijing is betting that, faced with this choice, America will back off and leave its allies and friends unsupported. This will weaken America’s alliances and partnerships, undermine U.S. power in Asia, and enhance China’s power.
This view of China’s motives explains its recent conduct.
Ever since President Obama announced the “pivot,” China has tested U.S. willingness to support its allies over the Scarborough Shoals and Senkaku/Daioyu disputes. Until his Asian trip last month, Obama seemed inclined to step back from America’s commitments, but his bold words in Tokyo and Manila suggest he has recovered his resolve to stand firm.
Now we can expect China to test this newly-recovered resolve by applying more pressure in the same places or elsewhere. And that is what Beijing is doing today in the waters off Vietnam. It is calling Obama’s bluff. Expect more pressure against Manila and Tokyo soon.
Of course this carries risks for China. It does not want to fight America, so it must be confident in the judgment that America will back down and desert its friends rather than engage in conflict with China, even if backing down badly weakens the U.S. position in Asia. This confidence reflects two key judgments by China’s leaders.
First, they believe that China’s new anti-access/area denial capabilities can deny America a quick and easy victory in an maritime clash in the East Asian littoral waters. They have been reassured by America’s own Air-Sea Battle doctrine that the U.S. knows it cannot prevail in these waters without launching a major campaign of strikes against Chinese territory. Such strikes would obviously risk a major escalation which might not stop below the nuclear threshold. So China’s leaders think their U.S. counterparts understand that a war with China today is one that America could not be confident of either winning or limiting.
Second, Beijing believes the balance of resolve is on China’s side. Washington clearly wants to preserve its role in Asia, but Beijing is even more determined to win power at the U.S.’ expense. China’s conduct suggests that the leadership in Beijing believes Washington understands this imbalance of resolve. That makes the Chinese confident that U.S. leaders will not assume that China would back down first in a crisis.
The idea that China might believe these things comes as a surprise to many outside China, including, one suspects, many in Washington. U.S. policy towards China, including the pivot itself, is based on contrary assumptions. The consensus is that Beijing is not really serious about challenging U.S. leadership in Asia because it is simply not willing to risk a confrontation with America which Beijing’s leaders must know they would lose, and they do not care enough about expanding China’s role in Asia to take that risk.
If that’s true, then China’s conduct is clearly foolish. But before assuming that the Chinese leaders are fools, we would be wise to wonder whether they really do believe what Washington assumes they believe. I’m pretty sure they do not.
Asia today therefore carries the seeds of a truly catastrophic episode of mutual misperception. Both Washington and China are steadily upping the stakes in their rivalry as China’s provocations of US friends and allies become more flagrant and America’s commitments to support them become more categorical.
Both believe they can do this with impunity because both believe the other will back down to avoid a clash. There is a disconcertingly high chance that they are both wrong.
Someone needs to change the nature of the game to avert the risk of disaster.
Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=6427
The Turkish government recently cut off the flow of the Euphrates River, threatening primarily Syria but also Iraq with a major water crisis. Al-Akhbar found out that the water level in Lake Assad has dropped by about six meters, leaving millions of Syrians without drinking water.
Two weeks ago, the Turkish government once again intervened in the Syrian crisis. This time was different from anything it had attempted before and the repercussions of which may bring unprecedented catastrophes onto both Iraq and Syria.
Violating international norms, the Turkish government recently cut off the water supply of the Euphrates River completely. In fact, Ankara began to gradually reduce pumping Euphrates water about a month and half ago, then cut if off completely two weeks ago, according to information received by Al-Akhbar.
A source who spoke on the condition of anonymity revealed that water levels in the Lake Assad (a man-made water reservoir on the Euphrates) recently dropped by six meters from its normal levels (which means losing millions of cubic meters of water). The source warned that “a further drop of one additional meter would put the dam out of service.”
“We should cut off or reduce the water output of the dam, until the original problem regarding the blockage of the water supply is fixed,” the source explained.
The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) controlling the region the dam is located in did not suspend the water output. Employees of the General Institution of the Euphrates Dam are running the lake under the supervision of al-Qaeda linked ISIS, but they don’t have the authority to take serious decisions, such as reducing the water output. In addition, such a step is a mere attempt to ease the situation, and it will lose its efficacy if the water supply isn’t restored to the dam by Turkey.
The tragic repercussions of the new Turkish assault began to reveal themselves when water levels dropped in al-Khafsa in Aleppo’s eastern countryside (where a water pumping station from Lake Assad is located to pump water through water channels to Aleppo and its countryside).
The reservoirs are expected to run out of water completely by tonight or tomorrow morning at the latest.Meanwhile, water supplies in auxiliary reservoirs in al-Khafsa are close to being depleted and the reservoirs are expected to run out of water completely by tonight or tomorrow morning at the latest. This threatens to leave seven million Syrians without access to water. Also, Tishrin Dam stopped receiving any water which blocked its electricity generating turbines, decreasing the power supply in Aleppo and its countryside, further intensifying the already severe imbalance in the power supply.
In Raqqa, the northern side of Lake Assad is today completely out of service. Two million Syrians living in the region covering the villages of Little Swaydiya to the east until al-Jarniya to the west could lose their drinking water supply. “Losing water supplies in the dam means that the silt in the lake will dry off which would pressure its structure, subjecting it to fissures and eventually total collapse,” Al-Akhbar sources warned, adding “it is crucial to shut down the dam to stop its collapse.”
However, shutting down the dam (if ISIS agrees) will only lead to a human and ecological (zoological and agricultural) catastrophe in Syria and in Iraq.
According to information obtained by Al-Akhbar, Aleppo locals (who had already launched many initiatives to reach solutions for a number of local issues) began a race against time to recommend solutions for the problem, including putting the thermal plant at al-Safira back to work, which may convince ISIS to spare the Euphrates Dam turbines, and in turn preserve current water levels in the lake.
In case it succeeds, such a step would only rescue whatever water and structures are left, and would ward off further repercussions of the crisis that has already started. A halt to the water supply is now inevitable and can’t be resolved unless the Turkish government takes the decision to resume pumping Euphrates water.
In any case, it is worth mentioning that the water in the lake would take about a month, after resuming pumping, to return to its normal levels.
A historical conflict
The Euphrates River has historically been at the center of a conflict between Turkey on the one hand and both Syria and Iraq on the other. Ankara insists on considering the Euphrates a “trans-boundary river” and not an “international river,” hence it is “not subject to international laws.” Also, Turkey is one of the only three countries in the world (along with China and Burundi) that opposed the Convention on the Law of the Non-Navigational Uses of International Watercourses adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations in 1997.
In 1987, a temporary agreement between Syria and Turkey was signed to share the water supplies of the Euphrates during the period when the basin of the Ataturk Dam was being filled. In virtue of the agreement, Turkey pledged to provide an annual level of over 500 cubic meters of water a second on the Turkish-Syrian borders, until reaching a final agreement about sharing the water supplies of the river between the three countries. In 1994, Syria registered the agreement at the United Nations to guarantee the minimum amount of Iraq and Syria’s right to the water from the Euphrates River.
Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=6411
ICBMS can reach Hawaii, Alaska, and western United States
BY: Bill Gertz May 5, 2014 5:00 am
North Korea has developed nuclear weapons capable of being launched on its ballistic missile forces, according to a new report by a defense analyst.
The Obama administration is seeking to hide the fact that North Korea possesses nuclear missile warheads, according to a report by Mark Schneider, a former Pentagon strategic analyst and director for forces policy at the office of the secretary of defense. Schneider’s statement came in a report published April 28 in the journal Comparative Strategy.
According to the 16-page report, “The North Korean Nuclear Threat to the United States,” the Defense Intelligence Agency stated in an unclassified assessment made public a year ago that “DIA assesses with moderate confidence the North [Korean government] currently has nuclear weapons capable of delivery by ballistic missiles.”
“This is disturbing news,” the report says. “The North Korean regime is one of the most fanatic, paranoid, and militaristic dictatorships on the planet. … While North Korea has long made occasional nuclear attack threats, the scope, magnitude, and frequency of these threats have vastly increased in 2013.”
North Korea has in the recent months issued provocative threats to carry out nuclear strikes on U.S. cities and against American allies.
According to the report, the Obama administration has sought to hide the alarming intelligence because it undermines efforts to eliminate nuclear weapons.
Administration spokesmen sought to “walk back” the unwelcome intelligence of nuclear missile warheads with officials asserting that the nuclear strike capability is limited or untested.
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, a proponent of the leftist “global zero” anti-nuclear initiative, said the same day that the intelligence was made public that neither Iran nor North Korea is capable of attacking the United States with nuclear weapons.
James Clapper, director of national intelligence, also disagreed with the DIA assessment.
However, the report states that despite the denials, “there is every reason to believe that the DIA estimate is accurate.”
Disclosure of the DIA intelligence coincides with the unusual resignations this week of DIA Director Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, who abruptly announced Wednesday he is stepping down as the Pentagon’s top intelligence official. Flynn’s deputy, David Shedd, also resigned as a result of disputes within the Pentagon and intelligence agencies.
U.S. officials said Flynn disagreed with senior intelligence officials, including Michael Vickers, the undersecretary of defense for intelligence. The specific reasons for the departure could not be learned.
DIA praised the two leaders in a statement for helping transform the agency.
The report on the North’s nuclear warheads stated that the assessment of a missile-delivered nuclear strike capability is not new.
Based on a declassified 2001 National Intelligence estimate, North Korea’s Taepodong-2 ICBM can deliver a payload of several hundred kilograms up to 6,200 miles, distance enough to hit Alaska, Hawaii, and parts of the western Untied States.
“If the North uses a third stage similar to the one used on the Taepodong-1 in 1998 in a ballistic missile configuration, then the Taepodong-2 could deliver a several-hundred-kg payload up to 15,000 km—sufficient to strike all of North America,” the report said.
North Korea also has acquired Chinese-made transporter-erector launchers that are now deployed with a new road-mobile KN-08 ICBM.
Building small nuclear warheads that can be launched on missiles is not difficult based on vast improvements in computer power and high-explosive technology over the past five decades and because of the publicly available information on nuclear arms technology.
Additionally, Chinese small nuclear warhead design data was uncovered around 2003 after Libya gave up its nuclear program. The warhead designs were sold by the Pakistani nuclear supplier network headed by A.Q. Khan and the data is believed to have been sold to Iran and North Korea, in addition to Libya.
“The argument that there is no current nuclear missile threat to the U.S. from North Korea is based upon the dubious assertion that North Korean nuclear weapons are too heavy to be delivered by the North Korea ICBM that successfully orbited a satellite,” the report said. “This position is frequently taken by opponents of U.S. missile defense and nuclear deterrence both in the U.S. and abroad.”
North Korean defectors also have stated that Pyongyang has developed nuclear warheads capable of being launched on missiles.
North Korean propaganda in recent months has referred to new strategic nuclear capabilities for its missile forces. Recently, North Korean Gen. Kang Pyoyong told state-run media that the military had developed “miniaturized and reduced-weight warheads.”
The report said it is difficult to assess the number of warheads that may be in the North Korean nuclear arsenal, but an estimate of 10 devices could be low.
North Korea is estimated to have produced 30 kilograms to 50 kilograms of plutonium, enough for six to 10 weapons and could have enough for an additional 10 warheads.
Gen. Curtis Scaparrotti, commander of U.S. Forces Korea, told the House Armed Services Committee April 2 that North Korea “remains a significant threat to United States’ interests.”
“North Korea continues to develop nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles in violation of multiple United Nations Security Council Resolutions,” he said in prepared testimony.
“It is investing heavily in longer-range missiles with the potential to target the U.S. homeland,” Scaparrotti said. “North Korea shows little regard for the fact that the possession of, pursuit of, and threat to use nuclear weapons and their means of delivery are the primary barriers to its inclusion in the international community and productive economic integration.”
The North Korean nuclear missile threat is compounded by the current U.S. policy of reducing U.S. nuclear forces and reluctantly investing in needed modernization, the report said.
“The de-emphasis on nuclear deterrence in the Obama administration is blatant,” the report said, noting the lack of support for nuclear arms and infrastructure from both Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who rarely mention nuclear weapons or deterrence.
As a further sign of U.S. weakness, the administration canceled the test launch of a Minuteman III ICBM during a recent period of North Korean military provocations.
“The Obama administration’s current position on the North Korean nuclear threat may very well be linked with its plans to radically reduce U.S. military capabilities in both the nuclear and the conventional arena in the near future, starting with sequestration,” the report said.
“From its first days in office the Obama administration downgraded the importance of nuclear deterrence and cut missile defense.”
“The Obama administration’s ‘nuclear zero’ ideology does not impress North Korea,” the report concludes. “Indeed, it may have precipitated the unprecedented nuclear attack threats from North Korea.”
Whether North Korea would initiate a nuclear attack on the United States is not known. However, in recent years the Pyongyang regime has carried out two major military attacks against South Korea and demonstrated a pattern of escalating threats that could result in a future miscalculation that could lead to a nuclear war, the report said.
Schneider, the author of the report, has held senior positions in the Pentagon, including principal director for forces policy; principal director for strategic defense, space and verification policy; director for strategic arms control policy; and representative of the secretary of defense to the Nuclear Arms Control Implementation Commissions.
He also has worked for the State Department Policy Planning Staff. He is currently with the National Institute for Public Policy.
Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=6361
Washington (AFP) – China for the first time will likely have subs equipped with long-range nuclear missiles later this year, part of an increasingly potent submarine fleet, a top US officer said Tuesday,
The head of US Pacific Command, Admiral Samuel Locklear, said the latest class of Chinese subs would be armed with a new ballistic missile with an estimated range of 4,000 nautical miles (7,500 kilometers).
“This will give China its first credible sea-based nuclear deterrent, probably before the end of 2014,” Locklear told the Senate Armed Services Committee.
Locklear was referring to the production of China’s JIN-class nuclear powered ballistic missile submarine and the new JL-2 missile on board the vessel.
“China’s advance in submarine capabilities is significant. They possess a large and increasingly capable submarine force,” the admiral said.
In October, Chinese state media for the first time showed images of the country’s nuclear-powered submarines, touting it as a “credible second-strike nuclear capability.”
Locklear said China’s submarine modernization effort was impressive.
“I think they’ll have in the next decade or so a fairly well modernized force of probably 60 to 70 submarines which is a lot of submarines for a regional power,” he said.
China now has five nuclear attack submarines, four nuclear ballistic missile submarines, and 53 diesel attack submarines, according to Jess Karotkin of the Office of Naval Intelligence.
China’s production of submarines has moved at a quick annual pace. Between 1995 and 2012, Beijing produced 2.9 submarines a year, according to the Congressional Research Service.
Locklear, repeating the Pentagon’s view of China’s military profile, said Beijing is investing in new weapons and naval power in part “to deny US access to the Western Pacific during a time of crisis or conflict and to provide the means by which China can bolster its broad maritime claims in the region.”
He added that Chinese military operations were “expanding in size, complexity, duration and geographic location.”
Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=6255