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‘Operational pause’: Turkish offensive in Syria’s Afrin forces US to halt anti-ISIS battle

Some US-aligned militias have switched their priorities to battle the Turkish-led offensive in Afrin instead of fighting ISIS terrorists, the Pentagon said, announcing a “pause” in ground operations in eastern Syria.

On January 20, Turkey, with the help of the so-called Free Syrian Army (FSA), launched Operation Olive Branch, a massive cross-border operation to clear Kurdish militias and remnants of jihadist fighters from Afrin, Syria. For over a month, the US-supported Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), the backbone of which is formed by the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), have split their efforts between battling the Turkish incursion and supporting the US agenda in northern Syria.
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McAdams: US Empire ‘Too Fragile’ for a Free Press

The US Congress yesterday revoked press credentials for the Russia-backed RT America television station, claiming RT's new "foreign agent" status disqualified it from conducting journalism on Capitol Hill. RPI Director Daniel McAdams appeared on RT's The Ed Shultz Show to criticize the move on the grounds that the US government should not attempt to prevent Americans from viewing whatever media they choose. The move is really an attempt by Washington's neoconservatives to prevent any criticism of US interventionist foreign policy, he told RT...
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NATO’s scaremongering about ‘Russia threat’ to Baltic States ‘is all about money’

The US security establishment is trying to justify its existence, says Daniel McAdams of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, commenting on a new report which lists how NATO can help the Baltic States counter Russian "hybrid warfare."

The American global policy think-tank, the RAND Corporation, published a report that claims NATO should do more to counter the potential Russian threat and strengthen the Baltic countries' forces. The US government-funded body issued a report titled, “Hybrid Warfare in the Baltics: Threats and Potential Responses.”

The document raises concern over “Russian use of “hybrid warfare” best understood as covert or deniable activities, supported by conventional or nuclear forces, to influence the domestic politics of target countries.”
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‘Syrian War is Conflict Between West & Russia’

The real issue in the Syrian civil war, apart from the important one of Syria itself, is the struggle for power between Russia and the West, says John Laughland from the Institute of Democracy and Cooperation in Paris.

On Tuesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin cancelled a visit to France in a developing diplomatic spat between the two countries.

Last week, France proposed a draft resolution at the UN Security Council to resolve the Syrian crisis. It was vetoed by Russia on Saturday. Moscow said the main proposal in the French draft - a no-fly zone - could have resulted in an upsurge of violence instead of halting it.

RT: What does this mean for bilateral relations?

John Laughland: It is very serious and it is a reflection of the very serious degradation in relations, which is the result of the massive disagreement about Syria. The disagreement about Ukraine is pretty strong, but Ukraine is a bit on the back burner for the time being, while the Syrian government offensive, supported by Russia in East Aleppo, has blown apart the appearance of cooperation between Russia and the West.
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‘Claims of Russian airstrike on Syrian aid convoy comes at convenient time for US'

Concern over the fate of 62 Syrian soldiers, killed in a US airstrike just days ago, is now overshadowed by claims that Russian and Syrian forces targeted a Syrian aid convoy, Daniel McAdams, executive director at the Ron Paul Institute, told RT.

Following an attack on a UN humanitarian aid convoy near the Syrian city of Aleppo, which was providing aid to pro-rebel forces, the Russian Defense Ministry stated that neither Syrian nor Russian air forces carried out an attack on the convoy despite claims from pro-rebel groups to the contrary.

The Ministry said the convoy's movement was being monitored by the Russian military as it traveled through areas held by opposition forces.
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