Russia Insider – Dec 13, 2018
Recall Bush Jr.’s 2003 “Axis of Evil” (Iraq, Iran, North Korea)? Condoleezza Rice’s 2005 “Outposts of Tyranny” (Belarus, Cuba, Iran, Myanmar, North Korea, Zimbabwe)? How about John Bolton’s 2018 “Troika of Tyranny” (Cuba, Nicaragua, Venezuela)? Or for that matter Ronald Reagans’ “Evil Empire” (the USSR)?
American officials sure do have a flare for the dramatic. A propaganda weapon which the Russian military has turned against the US:
On Tuesday a top Russian military official slammed the United States for “illegally occupying” a massive zone in southwest Syria surrounding the American garrison of al-Tanf, effectively protecting some 6,000 armed militants that Russia has designated terrorists.
The Head of Russia’s National Defense Control Center, Colonel-General Mikhail Mizintsev, called the US-occupied area “the last stronghold of evil” which continues to fester with militants “on the territory of the independent state”. He identified a 55 km zone surrounding the base in a desert region along the Syrian-Iraq border, which American special forces and US-backed FSA groups have held since 2016 after taking the key crossing from ISIS.
“Perhaps, only our American partners do not want to see up to date how much has been done to revive peaceful life in Syria. They are holding with incomprehensible stubbornness the occupied 55 km area around al-Tanf where 6,000 armed militants are on the loose and are preventing the disbanding of the Rukban refugee camp,” the general said at a Syrian-Russian inter-departmental coordination headquarters, according to TASS.
The Rukban camp falls withing the US-occupied perimeter and is home to between 50,000 and 60,000 refugees stuck near the desolate Jordanian and Iraqi frontier, especially after Jordan closed its side of the border in 2016. Russia has accused US forces of preventing humanitarian aid from reaching the camp, except through the mediation of armed groups operating in the area, with some militants based in the camp itself.
The Russian general is not calling the entire US as such a “stronghold of evil”, but merely its occupation zone in Southern Syria, but the influence of American’s own propaganda techniques is unmistakable.