Before Donald Trump left the London NATO summit in a huff, he made the startling claim at a press conference that the US can do “what we want” with the oil-fields it now controls in northeast Syria. This faux pas, jumped on by the British tabloid press, recalls Trump’s 2016 campaign trail boast of his plans for Syria: “I’ll take the oil”—and turn the seized fields over to Exxon. A military showdown over the oil looms, as all sides to the conflict await the new order that will emerge from the current scramble for northern Syria. A contest between the US and Russian-backed Assadist forces is a terrifying possibility. One restraining factor is that the US holds the fields jointly with Kurdish forces—and Washington, Moscow and Damascus alike are attempting to groom the Kurds as proxies. (Map: Energy Consulting Group)
Brazilian police arrested a man accused as a leader of the notorious First Capital Command drug gang, who was named as a top contact in South America of southern Italy’s ‘Ndrangheta crime network. “Andre do Rap,” detained in Sao Paolo in an operation that included US DEA agents, is said to have overseen massive cocaine exports to Europe via Italy’s southern region of Calabria. In July, police arrested two Italian nationals at a luxury seaside apartment in Sao Paulo, who were also said to be ‘Ndrangheta operatives. A month earlier, accused top ‘Ndrangheta figure Rocco Morabito escaped from a prison in Uruguay—angering Rome, which had been awaiting his extradition. (Map: Perry-Castañeda Library Map Collection)
The European Parliament overwhelmingly passed a resolution calling on Russian authorities to release Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Sentsov, and all the other "illegally detained Ukrainian citizens" in Russia and Russia-annexed Crimea. Sentsov has been on hunger strike in a Russian prison since May 14, demanding the release 64 Ukrainian citizens he considers political prisoners. Sentsov was arrested in Crimea in 2014, after Russia seized the Ukrainian region. The 76 MEPs who voted against the resolution are either of far-right formations such as the French National Front, Germany's Alternative für Deutschland, the Greek Golden Dawn, Italy's Northern League, the Netherlands' Party for Freedom, and Britain's UK Independence Party; or "leftist" parties such as the French Left Front, Germany's Die Linke, the Greek Syriza, Italy's The Other Europe, and Spain's Podemos. (Photo via Kyiv Post)
Turkey's aspiring dictator Erdogan (carrying out his own ethnic cleansing against the Kurds) exploits the Srebrenica genocide in vulgar manner and calls the Dutch "Nazis."
In a landmark victory for Nigerian farmers, the Hague Court of Appeals ruled that Royal Dutch Shell can be sued in a Netherlands court over oil spills in the Niger Delta.
The 20th anniversary of the Srebrenica massacre comes just as Russia vetoed a UN resolution to designate the massacre an act of "genocide"—leading to new violence in Bosnia.
As ISIS forces penetrated Kobani, Kurds across Turkey took to the streets in angry protests at Ankara's inaction, leaving several dead in street clashes.
Gen.Hugo Carvajal, a top Venezuelan official wanted in the US on drug trafficking charges, was arrested in Aruba—but freed by the courts before he could be extradited.
The District Court of The Hague ruled that the government of the Netherlands is liable for the deaths of 300 of the men and boys killed in the 1995 Srebrenica massacre.