Obama Warned To Defuse Tensions With Russia, "Unintended Consequences Likely To Be Catastrophic"

Tyler Durden's picture

Via ConsortiumNews.com,

A group of ex-U.S. intelligence officials is warning President Obama to defuse growing tensions with Russia over Syria by reining in the demonization of President Putin and asserting White House civilian control over the Pentagon.



FROM: Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity




We write to alert you, as we did President George W. Bush, six weeks before the attack on Iraq, that the consequences of limiting your circle of advisers to a small, relatively inexperienced coterie with a dubious record for wisdom can prove disastrous.* Our concern this time regards Syria.


We are hoping that your President’s Daily Brief tomorrow will give appropriate attention to Saturday’s warning by Russia’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova: “If the US launches a direct aggression against Damascus and the Syrian Army, it would cause a terrible, tectonic shift not only in the country, but in the entire region.”


Speaking on Russian TV, she warned of those whose “logic is ‘why do we need diplomacy’ … when there is power … and methods of resolving a problem by power. We already know this logic; there is nothing new about it. It usually ends with one thing – full-scale war.”


We are also hoping that this is not the first you have heard of this – no doubt officially approved – statement. If on Sundays you rely on the “mainstream” press, you may well have missed it. In the Washington Post, an abridged report of Zakharova’s remarks (nothing about “full-scale war”) was buried in the last paragraph of an 11-paragraph article titled “Hospital in Aleppo is hit again by bombs.” Sunday’s New York Times totally ignored the Foreign Ministry spokesperson’s statements.


In our view, it would be a huge mistake to allow your national security advisers to follow the example of the Post and Times in minimizing the importance of Zakharova’s remarks.


Events over the past several weeks have led Russian officials to distrust Secretary of State John Kerry. Indeed, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, who parses his words carefully, has publicly expressed that distrust. Some Russian officials suspect that Kerry has been playing a double game; others believe that, however much he may strive for progress through diplomacy, he cannot deliver on his commitments because the Pentagon undercuts him every time. We believe that this lack of trust is a challenge that must be overcome and that, at this point, only you can accomplish this.


It should not be attributed to paranoia on the Russians’ part that they suspect the Sept. 17 U.S. and Australian air attacks on Syrian army troops that killed 62 and wounded 100 was no “mistake,” but rather a deliberate attempt to scuttle the partial cease-fire Kerry and Lavrov had agreed on – with your approval and that of President Putin – that took effect just five days earlier.


In public remarks bordering on the insubordinate, senior Pentagon officials showed unusually open skepticism regarding key aspects of the Kerry-Lavrov deal. We can assume that what Lavrov has told his boss in private is close to his uncharacteristically blunt words on Russian NTV on Sept. 26:


“My good friend John Kerry … is under fierce criticism from the US military machine. Despite the fact that, as always, [they] made assurances that the US Commander in Chief, President Barack Obama, supported him in his contacts with Russia (he confirmed that during his meeting with President Vladimir Putin), apparently the military does not really listen to the Commander in Chief.”


Lavrov’s words are not mere rhetoric. He also criticized JCS Chairman Joseph Dunford for telling Congress that he opposed sharing intelligence with Russia, “after the agreements concluded on direct orders of Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Barack Obama stipulated that they would share intelligence. … It is difficult to work with such partners. …”


Policy differences between the White House and the Pentagon are rarely as openly expressed as they are now over policy on Syria. We suggest you get hold of a new book to be released this week titled The General vs. the President: MacArthur and Truman at the Brink of Nuclear War by master historian H. W. Brands. It includes testimony, earlier redacted, that sheds light on why President Truman dismissed WWII hero Gen. Douglas MacArthur from command of U.N. forces in Korea in April 1951. One early reviewer notes that “Brands’s narrative makes us wonder about challenges of military versus civilian leadership we still face today.” You may find this new book more relevant at this point in time than the Team of Rivals.


The door to further negotiations remains ajar. In recent days, officials of the Russian foreign and defense ministries, as well as President Putin’s spokesman, have carefully avoided shutting that door, and we find it a good sign that Secretary Kerry has been on the phone with Foreign Minister Lavrov. And the Russians have also emphasized Moscow’s continued willingness to honor previous agreements on Syria.


In the Kremlin’s view, Russia has far more skin in the game than the U.S. does. Thousands of Russian dissident terrorists have found their way to Syria, where they obtain weapons, funding, and practical experience in waging violent insurgency. There is understandable worry on Moscow’s part over the threat they will pose when they come back home. In addition, President Putin can be assumed to be under the same kind of pressure you face from the military to order it to try to clean out the mess in Syria “once and for all,” regardless how dim the prospects for a military solution are for either side in Syria.


We are aware that many in Congress and the “mainstream” media are now calling on you to up the ante and respond – overtly or covertly or both – with more violence in Syria. Shades of the “Washington Playbook,” about which you spoke derisively in interviews with the Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg earlier this year. We take some encouragement in your acknowledgment to Goldberg that the “playbook” can be “a trap that can lead to bad decisions” – not to mention doing “stupid stuff.”


Goldberg wrote that you felt the Pentagon had “jammed” you on the troop surge for Afghanistan seven years ago and that the same thing almost happened three years ago on Syria, before President Putin persuaded Syria to surrender its chemical weapons for destruction. It seems that the kind of approach that worked then should be tried now, as well – particularly if you are starting to feel jammed once again.


Incidentally, it would be helpful toward that end if you had one of your staffers tell the “mainstream” media to tone down it puerile, nasty – and for the most part unjustified and certainly unhelpful – personal vilification of President Putin.


Renewing direct dialogue with President Putin might well offer the best chance to ensure an end, finally, to unwanted “jamming.” We believe John Kerry is correct in emphasizing how frightfully complicated the disarray in Syria is amid the various vying interests and factions. At the same time, he has already done much of the necessary spadework and has found Lavrov for the most part, a helpful partner.


Still, in view of lingering Russian – and not only Russian – skepticism regarding the strength of your support for your secretary of state, we believe that discussions at the highest level would be the best way to prevent hotheads on either side from risking the kind of armed confrontation that nobody should want.


Therefore, we strongly recommend that you invite President Putin to meet with you in a mutually convenient place, in order to try to sort things out and prevent still worse for the people of Syria.


In the wake of the carnage of World War II, Winston Churchill made an observation that is equally applicable to our 21st Century: “To jaw, jaw, jaw, is better than to war, war, war.”

For the Steering Group, Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity

William Binney, former Technical Director, World Geopolitical & Military Analysis, NSA; co-founder, SIGINT Automation Research Center (ret.)

Fred Costello, Former Russian Linguist, USAF

Mike Gravel, former Adjutant, top secret control officer, Communications Intelligence Service; special agent of the Counter Intelligence Corps and former United States Senator

Matthew Hoh, former Capt., USMC, Iraq & Foreign Service Officer, Afghanistan (associate VIPS)

Larry C. Johnson, CIA & State Department (ret.)

John Kiriakou, former CIA counterterrorism officer and former senior investigator, Senate Foreign Relations Committee

Linda Lewis, WMD preparedness policy analyst, USDA (ret.) (associate VIPS)

Edward Loomis, NSA, Cryptologic Computer Scientist (ret.)

Ray McGovern, former US Army infantry/intelligence officer & CIA analyst (ret.)

Elizabeth Murray, Deputy National Intelligence Officer for Middle East, CIA (ret.)

Todd Pierce, MAJ, US Army Judge Advocate (ret.)

Coleen Rowley, Division Counsel & Special Agent, FBI (ret.)

Kirk Wiebe, former Senior Analyst, SIGINT Automation Research Center, NSA, (ret.)

Robert Wing, former Foreign Service Officer

Ann Wright, U.S. Army Reserve Colonel (ret) and former U.S. Diplomat

* In a Memorandum to President Bush criticizing Colin Powell’s address to the UN earlier on February 5, 2003, VIPS ended with these words: “After watching Secretary Powell today, we are convinced that you would be well served if you widened the discussion … beyond the circle of those advisers clearly bent on a war for which we see no compelling reason and from which we believe the unintended consequences are likely to be catastrophic.”


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wisehiney's picture


Hurricane will blow D.C. nuclear fallout away from here.

Toward NYC.

Boris Alatovkrap's picture

Funny when little boy king responsible for draw red line and light fuse is make demand on other to de-escalate his own creation. Solution, cage match between Putin and Soetoro, until boy is whipped.

FinalEvent's picture





You're so fucked....

Tom Servo's picture

Obama doesn't even attend the Presidents Daily Brief.... too fucking busy watching golf channel and preseason NBA highlights on ESPN


lance-a-lot's picture
lance-a-lot (not verified) Tom Servo Oct 4, 2016 4:51 PM

The truth about the conflict with Russia NO ONE dares to reveal. https://goo.gl/nKJndT

BaBaBouy's picture

Something Big Is About To Happen ??? 1000 Tonnes of paper GOLD Dumped Today ~ WHY

London metals trader Andrew Maguire tells King World News that today's smashing of gold involved about 1,000 tonnes' worth of paper gold.

"This is a desperate effort by Western officials to cover massive offside pre-Brexit over-the-counter short positions put on by their agent bullion banks near the $1,275 level," Maguire says, adding that the smash was timed for a trading holiday in China.


JRobby's picture

Oblivio will launch an aur strike instead. This is what they want to do.

Creative_Destruct's picture

"...defuse growing tensions with Russia over Syria by reining in the demonization of President Putin"

Nagonna happen. Oblamer and Hillary-witch: demonization is primary MO.

Secret Weapon's picture

This shit is really not funny.  Was a kid during the Cuban missle crisis.  Never want that kind of stress in my life again. 

lasvegaspersona's picture

me too....me too

I watch every Putin video I see. the guy is a serious, thoughtful man. I believe he must wonder just what the US is up to. Eventually hehas to ask himself...should i strike first? The americans have talked about it and I'm not sure who is running the show over there.

I don't know who these guys are but them seem on the money to me (VIPS)

fleur de lis's picture

Just so you know, the Cuban missile crisis was triggered by the DC morons.

As usual.

The Soviets were stupid enough to believe DC when they said they would not set up missiles along the eastern borders of Western Europe.

Then they set up missiles all along the East/West divide pointing toward the USSR.

Morons be morons.

So the Soviets responded by setting up missiles in Cuba.

That's what it was all about.

But they never teach that in school.

They reinforce the NWO raunchy fairy tale version out of DC.


Rusty Shorts's picture

Didn't we have a Naval Base in Cuba at the time?

Okienomics's picture

I rather support the policy decision to take a firm stand to keep nuclear weapons (pointed at the U.S.) more than 90 miles away.  

Abbie Normal's picture

Well then maybe the U.S. (through its NATO puppets) shouldn't have nuclear weapons at the border of Russia.

Erek's picture

Ditto USS Maddox, babies murdered in Kuwait, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Assad gassing his own people,...

Take your pick. The list goes on and on over the course of history.

Curiously_Crazy's picture

The Cuban missile crisis was used in the same way that the scary scary ooga booga terrorists are used today.

Don't let others stress you out - don't give them the emotional investment. What ever happens happens and there is nothing you or I can do about it so just live your life as best you can...  fuck them all.

Dugald's picture

You think that's stress, you should have tried the London Blitz.....

Chris Dakota's picture
Chris Dakota (not verified) svayambhu108 Oct 4, 2016 11:35 PM

Odinga dismissed them as "bitter life clingers"

Lore's picture

Fascinating letter, well written and cogent. 

You know the mistake these respected professionals are making?  They're trying to be REASONABLE with people who are NOT REASONABLE.  It's a very old mistake. 

Much can be inferred that we dare not discuss openly.

Which way to the beach's picture

 I agree with you whole heartedly. Much like the Lavrov dealing with horseface. But one can only put up with the BS for so long before the Russians resort to other means. What with the Russan embassy in Damascus being bombed today by Al-Nusra and the US blocking an emergency meeting of the UNSC to discuss this action, one might hear of another command post staffed by NATO and gulf state advisors being vaporised, which isn't quite as dramatic as what the KGB did back in the 80's in Beruit.      

When American hostages had been taken in earlier years, the response from Washington had been one of impotent protestation. When Soviet diplomats were kidnapped by a Shi-ite gang, the KGB had biten back. They'd captured the nephew of the Shi-ite gang, sliced off small parts of his anatomy and delivered them to his uncle, saying he'd get the whole boy back piece by piece if he didn't free the Russians. They were released the same day. Geoffrey Archer, "Eagle Trap", Pg 189, Arrow Books, 2004    


jeff montanye's picture

oh go on and dare.  once you've accused the likud zionists and the cia of 9-11 and them and the oil industry, the military industrial complex (and the mafia) of assassinating jfk, what's being held back?  more, smaller false flag terror events and assassinations? 

let them rip.  knowledge is power and it also delegitimizes their power.

So It Goes's picture

Bababouy to you.

It's a good time to buy - I hope we survive.

Actually I wish Howard would talk about this more.  He has such a wide audience and he could have a better take on the current events - he's so wishy washy now.  I hope he wakes up soon and gets real(er).  Help to spread the message and help us all manage better a very volatile future.

auricle's picture

Maguire called this one like he's called none of them in the past. When you have unlimmited fiat desperate is nonexistent. Maguire claims it is desperate whent the exponential function does it's next doubling? Hyping of a math equation these twats are. Hey desperate meet my friend infinity. 

jeff montanye's picture

it's like this.  the fed can "print" unlimited amounts of dollars.  what it can't produce easily and ultimately not at all is gold and silver.

see the difference?  the chinese have more gold than the u.s. does in fort knox, etc. (sold or leased to prop up the dollar since the '50's) and those chinese want more and since they have trillions of dollars, they will get it.

at some point the paper gold is redeemed for real gold and the bullion banks and the fed are busted.

this, like 9-11, is one of the real weaknesses of the status guo power elite.  that elite have their tits and their testicles in a wringer and people who don't care for them can have control of the wringer, if they choose to seize it.

More_sellers_than_buyers's picture

The gold market in dollar terms is small.   Easy to manipulate.....until it is not

Shemp 4 Victory's picture

Off topic: Fuck off, lance-a-lot, you god damned spamming little bitch.

On topic: Map of Aleppo based on western MSM reports:


chunga's picture

Let the record show that a quick glance at this "Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity" group doesn't show many tribe members, if any.

CNONC's picture

A bunch of mostly State department flunkies and their allies in the CIA. It's not that they don't want war. They want war on their terms, with lots of spooks, special operators and off budget, blank check programs to "groom the battle space." The pentagon wants nothing to do with this war. Fighting the Russians will reveal the F35, F22 and other major programs as the boondoggles that they are. The first time the US goes to war with a peer, the MIC gravy train ends, and many people will go to prison for fraud. The American people may not be paying attention as they should, but when our hugely expensive new aircraft are being shot from the sky in substantial numbers they will demand an accounting of the people who sold this shit.

wahrheit's picture

Yea those Veterans Today ex-spook wanks are still spooks. Gordon what's his face even admitted himself that a non-trivial percentage of VT work is deliberate disinformation.

Miles W. Mathis writes a lot about them and other spooks. He just calls them all "Intel" and show how they've been manufacturing fake history for literally centuries. Mostly Jews behind it.

He might not get everything right but as an accomplished portrait painter and realism artist (his work is legit, check it out) his eye for spotting fake pics, particularly pre-Photoshop/pre-computer graphics is amazing.

I can't believe I never spotted how obvious a fake the Lindbergh Atlantic crossing was. You're welcome for another rabbit hole to jump down. He tears DallasGoldbug a new one, too. After you read over his non-science work, I think you'll have even more doubts about these "former" CIA and other spook types. All your famous heroes are manufactured pyrite. Even his beloved Chomsky.

I'm not sure about his science papers yet. I need some more fuck you money or sabbatical time off to really dig into those.

CuttingEdge's picture

You see, if the cunts in the MSM who called themselves journalists had an ounce of integrity, rather than being a complete collective embarrassment to the history of reporting, we who wish to be told the truth wouldn't have to go elsewhere.

A case in point

994 Tons of Weapons in a Single shipment, Courtesy of Uncle Sam (specifics at the link above)

The following table provides information on the breakdown of the weapons shipment for December 2015 documented by Jane Defense Weekly.

Bear in mind the numbers pertain to a single shipment in December 2015, expressed in kilos (kg).

The amounts are substantial:

The 7.62 x 39 mm refers to ammunition for an AK47. Namely the shipment of 134 tons of ammunition.

The PG 7 VM (2 kg) and PV7 VT (3.3 kg) are anti-tank grenades (which suggests that more than 25,000 PG 7VM units were included in the shipment, and more than 60,000 PG 7VT.)

The total shipment to Aqaba and Agalar is of the order of 994 tons of “humanitarian” R2P light weapons for the “Moderates” in Syria. (in a single shipment out of Romania) among numerous comparable shipments by sea as well as by air.  


What did pleasantly surprise me was discovering that Janes do not appear to be under the influence of the CIA et al. Otherwise shit like this wouldn't be allowed to see the light of day.

Treason Season's picture

Not sure whether to thank you or what! Mullins as Con-Op! Another hero bites the dust. Unless this Miles guy is an "Anti" himself!

gezley's picture

Shemp - re. map of Aleppo -- haha! Classic! Thanks!

otschelnik's picture


Looks like its "turn off the lights lucille" for the PKK and Jabhat al-Nusra. 

So will Obummer double-down? 

He won't be able to hide the fraud much longer....  the USA isn't fighting ISIS, but trying to overthrow Asad.

SomebodySpecial's picture

Come on Zerohedge....it's not that difficult to blacklist this jurk from continuously pimping his bible website: biblicisminstitute.wordpress.com

Enough already!

pathosattrition's picture

Putin will not wait for the US to strike. 

Chris Dakota's picture
Chris Dakota (not verified) pathosattrition Oct 4, 2016 5:09 PM

And that is the danger from either side, FIRST STRIKE!

Amun's picture

he is waiting though:




Russia deployed state-of-the-art air defense system S-300V4 Antey-2500 in Syria (NATO reporting name SA-23 Gladiator) - RANGE - 400km - Allows to acquire as a target and follow any NATO aircraft FROM TAKE OFF at Incirlik (under 250km) or Cyprus (150km).

The system was delivered to the Russian naval base in the Syrian Tartous during the weekend, US officials said. It was also reported that it was the first time when Russia deployed the S-300V4 system outside its territory. - See more at: http://www.pravdareport.com/russia/politics/04-10-2016/135779-russia_s30...


According to media reports, the variant deployed in Syria is S-300V4 (NATO designation SA-23 Gladiator), which is capable of striking tactical and strategic aircraft, medium-range ballistic missiles, tactical missiles, as well as cruise missiles.

Read more: https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/20161004/1045998884/syria-russia-deployment-s300.html

JohninMK's picture

This deployment must have been decided on a while back, perhaps to increase air coverage for the Russian carrier when it arrives.

This is the full bells and whistles version of the system. It can be loaded with 3 types of missile, optimised for short/medium/long range with the long range version capable of ballistic missile interception.

I suspect the system will be operated in 'training' mode until it is really needed to hide elements of its performance from NATO ELINT.

onewayticket2's picture

but he will coordinate with the us election.


- two candidates with 60% unfavorables - CHECK

- sitting president with dreams of a 3rd term (and not leaving Washington)...CHECK

- FBI, DOJ, IRS, all in back pocket - CHECK


what better than the threat of nuclear annihilation to suspend the Constitutionally limited government....?

Countrybunkererd's picture

Gentlemen for sanity.  PLEASE use your contacts with foreign governments to ensure them that we do NOT want war with Russia.  If you are required to take the white house by force to ensure the stability and survival of the US and or the world, it is considered as a domestic threat and not a treasonous act.

ONE INCIDENT could cause a global catastrophe, and these asshats are playing little league baseball and don't even know they are so far beyond their capabilities and intelligence.

The world in turmoil grasps at the insignificant.  We face nuclear war but are concerned with transgender bathroom issues and kimmy's robbery.


Rubicon727's picture

It isn't so much The White House that houses these NEO-CON fanatics, it's the State Dept and the Pentagon/US military who are inundated with these crazy people.

It certainly does not help having a very weak-kneed president at this time. And guess WHO allowed many of these fanatics into powerful D.C. positions: none other than Bill Clinton............Naturally, they helped set the stage for the GW Bush administration - and we all know what they did.

These are insane folks dead set on accomplishing the Wolfowiz Document of US MILITARY/FINANCIAL WORLD HEGEMONY.

Someone needs to throw out the most obvious NEO-CONS: Samantha Powers, Victoria Nuland and her husband - Kaglan (sp), Ashton Carter and many hundreds of others who, given the chance, will blow up the world.

11b40's picture

There are no excuses for Obummer, and his White House has been populated with dual citizens from the beginning.

Bunghole's picture

Now, now.

Rahm was a good boy while with the IDF/Mossad.

Protip:  He still is.