Nice, France: A Harvest of Horror

July 20, 2016 (Tony Cartalucci - NEO) - While the Western media poses as perplexed over the recent string of horrific attacks across Europe and particularly in France, the latest of which unfolded this week in the seaside city of Nice leaving over 80 dead and many more injured, it is clear that France itself has cultivated the soil within which terrorism and violence has taken root.

Through France's own domestic and foreign policy, it has created the perfect storm to continue "watering" terrorism at home and abroad, while its political leaders carefully cultivate the predictable division, fear, hysteria, and violence that is now unfolding. Between attacks in 2015 and 2016, over 200 people have now died in France as a result of violent domestic attacks.

French Foreign Support of Terrorism 

Since 2011, France has played a key role in destabilizing North Africa and the Middle East. In 2011, it participated in the US-led NATO assault on Libya, as well as sending troops to other African nations including the Ivory Coast and Mali. France also currently maintains troops in Sahara, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Liberia, Central African Republic, and Sahel in Africa, as well as troops still participating in the ongoing occupation of Afghanistan.

While France has portrayed these operations as essential for maintaining global stability and security, it has done anything but. In addition to creating chaos from which torrents of refugees are now fleeing - all the way to Europe - it should be noted that a component of French involvement abroad is also the arming and funding of militant groups. This was especially so in Libya, where France helped install into power terrorists affiliated with Al Qaeda.

The London Telegraph's 2011 article, "France supplying weapons to Libyan rebels," would report that:
France has begun supplying weapons to the Libyan rebels despite the UN arms embargo, confirming on Wednesday it had dropped assault rifles into the Nafusa Mountains south-west of Tripoli.
It would also report that:
The air drop would appear to be in violation of the arms embargo against Libya instituted by the United Nations. But Nato officials believe that the UN security council resolution 1973 which authorised the bombing campaign allows for a wide range of actions in furtherance of the mission to "protect civilians".
It retrospect, it was clear that France's actions had little to do with an interest in "protecting civilians" and instead led directly to the overthrow of the Libyan government. The militant forces, armed, backed, and even provided air cover by NATO would be later revealed to be extremists directly affiliated with Al Qaeda and would later transform into the so-called "Islamic State" (ISIS) in Libya.

Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi had for decades subdued and kept in check extremist elements centered primarily in eastern Libya's Cyrenaica region, particularly in the cities of Benghazi, Tobruk, and Derna which would later go on to become epicenters of US military and diplomatic activity after the war as well as a springboard for Western-backed terrorism in Syria.

The Developer Behind Latest Augmented Reality Craze

A company with a questionable pedigree, sporting the next step in technology already used to destabilize and destroy countries, has wrapped its latest creation in decidedly disarming cartoon characters. 

July 18, 2016 (Tony Cartalucci - LD) - Pokemon Go, a location-based interactive augmented reality (AR) game, has been portrayed as a triumph for video game giant Nintendo. However, it is not entirely Nintendo's doing. Instead, the idea originated within and was developed by Google's internal startup, Niantic.

Niantic, in turn, is headed by John Hanke, who before becoming a tech-entrepreneur worked for the US State Department. The Financial Times in its article, "The man who put ‘Pokémon Go’ on the map," would report:
Mr Hanke, now 49, had spent more than a decade with the search giant [Google] after it acquired his previous company, Keyhole, whose rich digital cartography and satellite images formed the basis of both Google Earth and Maps. For Mr Hanke, who worked for the US Department of State in Myanmar before moving to the San Francisco Bay Area to study for an MBA at University of California, Berkeley, it was his third start-up to be acquired.
Just why Hanke's stint a the US State Department is important is best understood by examining its relationship with Google, the tech-giant Hanke graduated onward to.

Google and the US State Department: A Quick Primer 

Google has played a pivotal role in augmenting reality in more ways than one.

Before it was populating the world with virtual Pokemon characters, it helped manipulate public perception during the unfolding US-engineered "Arab Spring" by quite literally renaming streets and public spaces on Google Earth and Google Maps in real-time to psychologically overwhelm embattled governments and their supporters, and give impetus to US-backed mobs and militants.

John Hanke - currently heading Niantic, the developer of Pokemon Go - would have been involved in Google Earth and Google Maps at the time this was happening.

As unbelievable as this all may sound, prominent British newspaper, the London Guardian, would report in its article, "Syria: is it possible to rename streets on Google Maps?," that (emphasis added):
In their struggle to free Syria from the clutches of President Bashar al-Assad, anti-government activists have embarked on a project to wipe him off the map. Literally. On Google Maps, major Damascus thoroughfares named after the Assad family have appeared renamed after heroes of the uprising. The Arab Spring has form in this regard. When anti-Gadaffi rebels tore into Tripoli last August, the name of the city's main square on the mapping service changed overnight – from "Green Square", the name given to it by the erstwhile dictator, to "Martyr's Square", its former title. 

The internet giant's mapping service has a history of weighing in on political disputes.
The Guardian would reveal that while Google Maps allowed name changes to be 'crowd sourced,' Google gave access only to certain crowds to do this - for example, China's population is denied such access. It also reveals that ultimately, Google moderators must approve of the changes.

But even before the "Arab Spring," Google would play an even more pivotal role - training US-backed opposition groups in New York, London, and Mexico City before sending them back to their respective countries to overthrow their governments.

The so-called Alliance of Youth Movements (AYM)  held summits as early as 2008 to prepare opposition groups for the planned 2011 uprising. AYM is a US State Department-run project sponsored by the US State Department and even included video call-ins by then US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton herself.

Syria's "Moderate Rebels" are not Moderate, not Rebels

July 17, 2016 (Tony Cartalucci - NEO) - Never has the US-led conspiracy against the sovereign state of Syria been so transparent. When recently a Syrian warplane crashed near the Syrian capital of Damascus and its pilot parachuted to safety, he was captured and promptly executed by US-backed "moderate rebels." In what was clearly an inexcusable war crime, the story began to change almost immediately in order to shift the blame..

 Reuters in its article, "Syrian warplane crashes near Damascus, rebels say pilot killed," would report (emphasis added):
The rebel group Jaish al-Islam said the pilot had been killed by a Nusra Front fighter while being held at a joint command centre. Jaish al-Islam had earlier said he would be handed over to them because they had shot down his plane. 

Jaish al-Islam, which controls territory on the Syrian capital's eastern and northeastern outskirts, had earlier circulated a photo that it said showed the pilot.
The incident highlights several inconvenient facts. First, it exposes the fact that Jaish al-Islam through its own admission maintains a "joint command center" with Jubhat al Nusra - a US State Department designated foreign terrorist organization - meaning that Jaish al-Islam itself is coordinating with and fighting alongside listed terrorists.

That Jaish al-Islam receives significant material support from US allies including Saudi Arabia and NATO-member Turkey implicates both US allies in supporting Al Nusra as well - as these resources are demonstrably being shared.

It should also be noted that it was Jaish al-Islam - a militant front openly collaborating with Al Qaeda - that was chosen by the so-called "Syrian opposition committee" to represent them at so-called "peace talks" held by the UN earlier this year.

The BBC's article, "Syria conflict: Islamist rebel named opposition chief negotiator," would reveal in January of this year that:
A Syrian opposition committee has named an Islamist rebel as its chief negotiator at peace talks that the UN hopes to convene in Geneva on Monday. 

Mohammed Alloush is the political leader of the powerful, Saudi-backed group Jaysh al-Islam (Army of Islam).

This links the rest of the so-called "moderate opposition" directly to foreign-sponsored terrorist organizations as well.

Jaish al-Islam and Nusra's joint atrocity earlier this month in the execution of a Syrian pilot also reveals another inconvenient fact - that the US is maintaining a duplicitous double game in which it is supporting terrorists fighting in Syria, using the misnomer of "moderate opposition" to condemn any Syrian and Russian attacks on these terrorist groups, then citing and shifting blame on the listed terrorist organizations operating side-by-side these supposed "moderates" when atrocities unfold.

It is a pattern that has - in recent weeks - accelerated, with Al Qaeda-linked terrorist groups dominating fighting across the country portrayed as "moderates" to shield them from joint Syrian-Russian anti-terror operations, while simultaneously disowned as Al Qaeda when atrocities are committed.

Turkey's Failed Coup: "A Gift from God" or from Washington?

July 18, 2016 (Tony Cartalucci - LD) - The coup this weekend that rocked Turkey was a particularly spectacular geopolitical development. Theories abound regarding who was behind it and their motivations for carrying out what ultimately proved an apparently failed attempt at removing the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Still, it is too early to tell, as facts are far from forthcoming. However, it is possible to discern the most plausible possibilities based on the subsequent actions taken by various potential players who may have been involved in the coup attempt.

US Faces Serious Accusations 

The most significant of these actions is President Erdogan's own accusations against the United States for having engineered the coup in collaboration with self-exiled Turkish political figure, Fethullah Gulen.

The UK Independent in its article, "Turkey coup: Tensions between US and Erdogan administration rise after failed power grab," would report that:
Tensions between Turkey and the US have escalated following the attempted coup against the Erdogan administration, with the country's leader demanding the extradition of a US-based cleric accused of orchestrating the violence. Another senior official has directly blamed the United States.

Indeed, tensions "rising" might seem like an understatement if Turkey truly believed the US was behind the coup attempt. In essence, Turkey is accusing the United States of backing an attempted assassination of Turkey's president, the bombing of the Turkish parliament building, the strafing of Turkish citizens from the air, and the deployment of heavy armor in Turkey's streets.

In essence, Turkey has accused the United States of an overt and egregious act of war.

Turkey's Actions Fall Short Vis-a-Vis the Scale of its Accusations 

However, considering the gravity of Turkey's accusations against the United States, its actions so far have been disproportionately subdued. No one is suggesting that Turkey would "go to war" with the United States, but even amid diplomatic rows of far lesser significance, nations have expelled diplomats and withdrawn the use of their territory for specific uses by the nation in question. Turkey, so far, has done none of this in regards to the United States.

In the coming week, should Turkey fail to take even these most basic punitive - even cautionary measures, it would appear Turkey's accusations are a distraction - but a distraction from what?

The Purge. 

The BBC in its article, "Turkey coup arrests hit 6,000 as Erdogan roots out 'virus'," reports that:
Arrests in Turkey after Friday's failed coup have risen to around 6,000, with President Erdogan vowing to purge state bodies of the "virus" that caused it. 

At a funeral for one of the victims, Mr Erdogan again blamed US-based Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen for the plot. Mr Gulen strongly denies any involvement. 

High-ranking military officers and 2,700 judges are among those held.

Beyond Nazi Germany or the Soviet Union under Joseph Stalin, one would be hard pressed to cite a political purge of this scale. Despite the sweeping scale of the mass arrests - the Western media has reported on them without the sensational hysteria that generally accompanies the arrest of even one US-backed opposition member in any other nation. The scale of the arrests are such that preparations for them must have been made ahead of time, calling into question the very nature of the coup itself.

The Coup Was a "Gift From God" 

A Reuters report titled, "Turkey rounds up plot suspects after thwarting coup against Erdogan," would state (emphasis added):
"They will pay a heavy price for this," said Erdogan, launching a purge of the armed forces, which last used force to stage a successful coup more than 30 years ago. "This uprising is a gift from God to us because this will be a reason to cleanse our army."
President Erdogan, heading a NATO-member state and a stalwart US ally, receiving a "gift from God" from an alleged political opponent lodging in the United States, raises serious suspicions over the true motivation behind the coup. While it appeared as a convincing attempt to oust President Erdogan from power, it ultimately failed and instead provided him with the perfect context to uproot the military "deep state" both his political allies and US policymakers have sought to eradicate for decades.

Military Coup in Turkey

July 16, 2016 (Ulson Gunnar - NEO) - A bloody and destructive military coup attempt swept Turkey from Ankara to Istanbul today with reports of limited ground and air combat. The parliament building was reportedly bombed, news stations overtaken by troops including CNN's Turkish studio, and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan ordering "rebel" aircraft shot from the sky and the coup-plotters brought to "justice."

Events are still developing, and regardless of the outcome, Turkey's political landscape has descended  one step further still into chaos and instability with the prospect of a united and stable Turkey emerging anytime soon very unlikely.

Turkey hosts a myriad of competing factions, including Turkey's ruling party, Justice & Development Party (AKP), Kemalist nationalists that functions as a military "deep state," a large Kurdish minority and a tangled web of street and even armed fronts supporting each respective faction.

President Erdogan himself laid the blame for the coup attempt on Fetullah Gulen, a US-based opposition figure who has long sought political power in his native Turkey.

President Erdogan immediately seized upon the violence to declare his intentions to "cleanse" the military of dissents, however, this is likely to only further divide the country and force his political enemies to take even more drastic measures to ensure self-preservation.

Turkey Brought to the Brink   

Beyond merely vying for political power, there may be other reasons for increasingly violent infighting across Turkey's political landscape.

Turkey's involvement in recent years in neighboring Syria and the ongoing war there has manifested itself within Turkey as a self-destructive policy of cultivating regional terrorism, pitting the nation against its neighbors and powerful economic partners like Russia and even has brought Turkey on multiple occasions toward the brink of wider regional war.

Evidence suggests that terrorist organizations including Al Qaeda and the self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS) are harbored within Turkish territory as well as resupplied, rearmed and reinforced in Syria via Turkey. Russian air operations along the border, stemming this torrent of supplies have been credited with the subsequent collapse of terrorist operations within Syria, further lending credence to accusations of Turkey's direct involvement in sponsoring regional terrorism.