DEBKAfile Special Report October 10, 2011
Five days after defeating a Western-backed UN Security Council resolution condemning Bashar Assad's savagery against his opposition, Moscow turned the heat on him by inviting an opposition delegation for a visit Monday, Oct. 10 and offering to host talks between the Syrian government and the opposition umbrella Syrian National Council. Syrian Foreign Minister Wallid Moallem threatened unspecified "tough measures" against any countries recognizing the council, fearing a repeat of the Libyan rebel NTC exercise which toppled Muammar Qaddafi.
DEBKAfile Special Report October 8, 2011
Targeted assassinations now dominate Bashar Assad's savage confrontation with the popular opposition to his rule. The White House finally told the Syrian ruler to step down for the first time as 50,000 Syrian Kurds clashed with security forces at the funeral of the popular Kurdish leader Mashaal Tammo, 53, slain by masked men at his home in Qamishli, northern Syria Friday, Oct. 7. debkafile: The killers were members of the Syrian Air Force Intelligence Directorate acting on direct orders from Assad.
DEBKAfile Special Report September 28, 2011
A US and/or Israel strike against Iran suddenly looked tangible this week following a warning of its probability by a French diplomat and a large-scale Russian-Central Asian military exercise simulating Iranian retaliation for a hypothetical strike on US-owned Caspian oil fields. A British diplomat ending his term in Pyongyang quoted North Korean officials who told him that NATO would not have attacked Libya if Muammar Qaddafi had not given up his nuclear weapons. Tehran appears to have reached the same conclusion.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report September 22, 2011
Russian antiaircraft officers ambushed an Azerbaijani Air Force Israeli-made drone to gain access to its secrets, warn Israel to keep its hands off the Caspian region, and signal Tehran its willingness to cooperate in halting the spread of Azerbaijani and Israel influence.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report September 16, 2011
The Arab revolts have resolved themselves ten months on into a US effort to damp down the Turkey-Israel, Egypt-Israel fires before they blow up - at best into limited military confrontations, whereas Russia, disenchanted with America's removal of Muammar Qaddafi, has stepped in to rescue Syria's Assad.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report September 16, 2011
The Muslim Brotherhood's role in post-revolt Arab capitals – sought by Barack Obama – faces counter-pressure from Russia, China and Iran – particularly in Damascus. Not just Iran, but Russia and China too have stepped up their arms consignments to the regime, loath to see fundamentalist Muslim power reigning in any Middle East capital. In Damascus, Moscow has set up a military-diplomatic headquarters.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report September 2, 2011
DEBKA's Intelligence History files tell the story of how the plot to depose Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev 20 years ago succeeded in one sense and misfired in two: His removal marked the demise of the Soviet empire and also the unforeseen rise of Boris Yeltsin.
DEBKAfile Special Report August 30, 2011
Monday night and Tuesday, Aug-29-30, three international heavyweights - Russia, the European Union and key Muslim nations – gave Syrian President Bashar Assad tough ultimatums for ending his barbaric crackdown on protest. Nevertheless, on Monday, his troops shot dead 17 people in Syrian cities - even as he received Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov who arrived in Damascus with a last warning from President Dmitry Medvedev. Pushed into a tight corner, Assad may opt for war on his neighbors.
DEBKAfile Special Report August 5, 2011
Thursday night, Aug. 4, the commanders of Syria's military crackdown on the city of Hama ordered suspected protesters to be picked up off the streets for summary execution. Within hours, hundreds of victims were "executed" by firing squad in Nasser Square. The order was issued when the military failed to overcome mounting resistance.
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev warned Syrian President Bashar Assad: "We are watching how the situation is developing. It's changing and our approach is changing as well."
DEBKAfile Special Report August 5, 2011
Twelve hours after Russian President Dmitry Medvedev warned Assad he faced a "sad fate" if he failed to introduce reforms, Moscow's envoy to NATO Dmitry Rogozin accused the Western alliance of planning a military campaign against Syria to help overthrow the Assad regime "with the long-reaching goal of preparing a beachhead for an attack on Iran."
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report August 2, 2011
As Moscow prepares to block strong UN Security Council condemnation of Syrian violence against protest, Russian diplomats Monday, Aug. 1, launched a quiet effort to start freezing sanctions imposed on Iran over its military nuclear program in return for Tehran satisfactorily answering the International nuclear watchdog's "questions and concerns," debkafile's Moscow and Washington sources report.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 22, 2011
The Obama administration is willingly handing the diplomatic lead for ending the Libyan crisis to Moscow having concluded that America no longer commands the resources for carrying global burdens on its own. Muammar Qaddafi, supported by Russia and Africa, will insist on staying in power until the agreed transition is reliably implemented with room at the top for his sons.
DEBKAfile DEBKA Weekly July 19, 2011
In its coming issue out Friday, DEBKA-Net-Weekly analyzes expectations from the negotiations already afoot (amid violence and setbacks) between Muammar Qaddafi, on one side, and the US, Russia, NATO and the rebels, on the other. Still in control of Libya's army, biggest tribes, cities and oil, Qaddafi will loom large over Libya's future - even after he steps down.
To subscribe to DEBKA-Net-Weekly, click here
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report June 23, 2011
The three scientists who planned, designed, built and operated Iran's first nuclear reactor at Bushehr died Tuesday night, June 20, when a Rusaero flight from Moscow crashed at Petrozavodsk in northwest Russia. debkafile reveals they were among the 44 passengers killed. Their loss is a blow to Russia's atomic reactor and energy industries because of their expertise in synchronizing different nuclear systems. Some intelligence sources say that Bushehr's amalgam of systems made it vulnerable to the Stuxnet virus two years ago.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report June 10, 2011
The Arab revolts are resolving themselves into bids for getting rid of three rulers who refuse to step down, Yemen's Ali Abdullah Saleh, who survived an assassination bid and promises to return as good as new; Syria's Bashar Assad, whom the West allows to survive, and Libya's Muammar Qaddafi, who promises to outlive NATO's attempts on his life.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 23, 2011
Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas has run into major hurdles in his ploy for using a unity pact between his Fatah and the extremist Hamas as the fulcrum for a diplomatic offensive against Israel to climax in UN recognition of a Palestinian state in September. This is reported by debkafile's exclusive Middle East sources. The US and Russia have nixed Abbas' international moves until his unity partner Hamas recognizes Israel and Jordan's Abdullah accuses him of two-timing him with that same partner.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 20, 2011
After sitting on the fence for six months amid the Arab uprisings, Moscow now takes a stand, capitalizing on the positions slipping out of the United States grasp in the turbulent slipstream of the Arab Revolt.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 25, 2011
Qaddafi has no fear of sanctions. His vast assets are mostly deposited safely in Libyan banks which he controls and he is heavily staked in European industry, banking, media and weapons industries.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 18, 2011
Stuxnet is admitted for the first time as having attacked five Iranian targets. The admission has stirred up more trouble between Moscow and Tehran who are playing the blame game over the delay in activating the Bushehr nuclear reactor.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report January 31, 2011
Iran's atomic energy chief Ali Akbar Salehi said on Jan. 29 that the Bushehr nuclear power plant would be connected to the national grid on April 9. He "forgot" about Tehran's promise to fully activate its first nuclear reactor Tuesday, Jan. 25. debkafile's sources reveal that, Iran's hand was held back at the last minute by Russia's nuclear chief Sergei Kiriyenko. He warned Stuxnet was back and activating the reactor could trigger a nuclear catastrophe costing millions of lives.