Adrift no longer. Without even knowing it, I arrived
December 17, 2015 by Thomas Wictor
I never knew what to do with my life. In very real ways, I never had a life. Some forms of trauma are impossible to “get over.” The closest I came to having a career was the ten years I spent as a music journalist in Los Angeles. It didn’t pay anything, but my parents let me live rent free in one of their houses in exchange for me taking care of them. This arrangement was unspoken. After I quit being a music journalist in 2002, I was adrift again.
From 2002 until 2013, I went into various fields, all without success. I’m now an investor and a blogger. The blogging began in June of 2014, when I decided that I would no longer let the world get away with lying about Israel. Exposing fake videos and photos is effortless, even though I hadn’t prepared myself in any way for this. It’s inborn. But the more I do it, the easier it becomes.
Initially I confined myself to videos and photos. After a few weeks, I was able to debunk entire stories. The process reversed itself: Instead of using reality to expose fake videos and photos, I exposed lies by locating and posting real photos and videos.
Now, I can read about or hear something, and immediately I can figure out what’s happening behind the scenes. That’s why I make proclamations that people think are insane. It’s like a form of prescience. Those who foretell the future say that it just comes to them. The same thing happens to me.
From adrift to anchored
I’ve known in my gut for some time that Arab special operators are fighting in Syria. Now I’ve discovered the evidence. The Syrian Democratic Forces (QSD) were formed on October 10, 2015, yet in barely two months they’ve become the most effective fighters engaging the Islamic State. They’re experts in trench warfare, demining, nighttime attacks, long-range patrols, capturing huge installations intact, and sparing the lives of civilians.
Not only that, these Kurds, Muslim Arabs, Turkmens, and Syriac Christians have melded at least fifteen militias and rebel units into a cohesive force that’s accepted by opposition groups and the nations supporting them. The QSD came out of nowhere, immediately began winning, and is now considered legitimate by pretty much everyone we want on our side.
Large numbers of Arab special forces are the only answer. This is what the US is saying.
The United States has delivered a fresh supply of ammunition to Syrian Arab fighters ahead of an expected stiff battle with Islamic State as they push toward the Syrian town of al-Shadadi, a key logistics hub for the group, U.S. officials tell Reuters.
The munitions were shipped into Syria over land in recent days to Syrian Arab forces fighting in the northeast part of the country, said the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity due to the sensitive nature of the operation. It appeared to be the third delivery of ammunition to the Syrian Arabs since the United States started supplying them with an airdrop in October.
The Syrian Arabs are allied with Kurdish fighters, and the initial shipment of U.S. ammunition unnerved NATO ally Turkey, which is sensitive to any operations that could benefit Syrian Kurdish YPG militia.
The Syrian Arabs number around 5,000 fighters. With the Kurds and others, they form the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces seeking to claw back land from Islamic State, officials say.
So, initially the Turks were “unnerved” by the US helping the Kurdish YPG militia, which is still part of the QSD. Now the Turks are okay with it. What changed? This is the answer.
Washington’s strategy in Syria has shifted this year from trying to train thousands of vetted fighters outside the country to supplying groups headed by U.S.-vetted commanders.
Those “US-vetted commanders” are from the Saudi, Emirati, Qatari, Bahraini, Egyptian, and Jordanian special forces. There’s no doubt. The fact that we’re supplying them overland proves it. If we were giving them ammunition, we’d airdrop it. What we’re actually doing is transporting all the really cool weapons and vehicles that special forces use.
The QSD is traveling vast open spaces to its targets.
And yet these long convoys consistently achieve the element of surprise. It’s because special operators are being dropped by parachute and flown in by helicopter ahead of the convoys. Such missions are called air assaults.
Two days ago, the QSD said that its only concern is fighting the Islamic State.
Our main enemy right now is the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant [ISIL], as well as al-Nusra Front.
Taking on both the Islamic State and the al-Nusra Front simultaneously would be hugely challenging for even veteran militias.
For thousands of special forces? Not that big a problem. The assertion below is in another version of the Reuters story I excerpted above.
What makes the QSD so capable? Yes, the Kurdish militias are extremely skilled light infantry, but the Syrian Civil War has been going on since 2011. Suddenly a new organization is formed, the US immediately begins giving it weapons, it starts pounding the crap out of the Islamic State, and all the surrounding nations accept that this is a group that can be trusted.
It’s because hundreds if not thousands of Arab special operators are attached. Here’s a United Arab Emirates Air Tractor AT-802i counterinsurgency (COIN) aircraft of Aviation Group 18, working in coordination with an American A-10 Thunderbolt.
Aviation Group 18 is a component of the UAE Presidential Guard and is under the control of Special Operations Command. The Emirati AT-802i is used for precision strikes.
My guess is that Arab special forces went to Syria in large numbers beginning in September. They’ve defeated Iran and Hezbollah, and now they’re turning their attention to the Islamic State and the al-Nusra Front.
I wondered why the Saudis and Emiratis never forcefully countered the endless streams of lies that the press, “human rights” groups, and think tanks have been telling about the conflict in Yemen. Transparent falsehoods about war crimes, incompetence, and failure have not been rebutted. Not only that, all Saudi public figures project nothing but calm confidence.
Now I know why.
While everyone had their eyes on Yemen, the Arab League quietly demolished Iran and Hezbollah in Syria. After four years of stalemate, everything changed in two months. The only explanation is that there was a large infusion of highly trained soldiers who excel in unconventional warfare.
The troops who turned the tide against Iran and Hezbollah are now fighting the Islamic State and the al-Nusra Front. There’s no question how that will end.
Someone who works for one of the biggest Arabic-language media outlets asked me if I was sure that I wasn’t overestimating Arab League military capabilities.
I underestimated them. The Yemen intervention is one of the most successful military deception operations ever carried out. It takes incredible character to willingly set yourself up as the object of criticism from liars and idiots, even if it’s part of a long-term strategy.
But those who fight jihadist terrorism are much better people than I am.
Yesterday I came across a song that I hadn’t heard in thirty-three years. It flooded me with vivid memories of my life at that time. I could never understand why the song moved me so much. Tonight I finally investigated, and I found the answer.
The phrase “I am a camera” is from Christopher Isherwood’s novel Goodbye to Berlin.
I am a camera with its shutter open, quite passive, recording, not thinking.
It’s another way of saying you’re adrift.
All these years later, the song still moves me. I was never a fan of the band Yes. Though I understood their appeal, and though I recognize the greatness of bassist Chris Squire, the music just wasn’t my cup of tea. But “Into the Lens” is a masterpiece. The lyrics, vocal harmonies, melodies, dynamics, changes, and musicianship are exceptional.
There’s one part that I have to listen to over and over: the singing and electric bass flurry from to 5:46 to 6:05. Those few seconds transport me.
I finally accept that my life wasn’t wasted.
This to just remind you
All is meant to be.
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