Interview with Syrian Journalist Jamila Assi from Damascus

The Sunday Wire with Patrick Henningsen joined by a special guest via live link from Damascus – journalist Jamila Assi, editor of Shababeek Souria – for a powerful and candid discussion about the true situation on the ground in Syria and where this devastating conflict is heading in the next 12 months.

Shababeek Souria:


The Truth About Syria: A Manufactured War Against An Independent Country

The people of the world should ask Western leaders and their allies: Why are you prolonging this war? Why do you continue funding and enabling the terrorists? Isn’t five years of civil war enough? Is overthrowing the Syrian government really worth so much suffering and death?
Senator John McCain in Syria with members of the U.S.-backed rebel group Northern Storm.
Senator John McCain in Syria with members of the U.S.-backed rebel group Northern Storm.
In late April, President Barack Obama announced that 250 U.S. special operations troops are being deployed to Syria. Unlike the Russian and Iranian forces aiding anti-terrorism efforts in the country, the U.S. military personnel have entered Syria against the wishes of the internationally recognized government.
In terms of international law, the United States has invaded Syria, a sovereign country and United Nations member state. This is the not the first time, though — Arizona 
Sen. John Mccain crossed into Syria without a visa to meet with anti-government fighters in 2013.
While the new U.S. boots on the ground have officially been dispatched for the purpose of fighting Daesh (an Arabic acronym for the organization known in the West as ISIS or ISIL), they will most likely be working to achieve one of the Pentagon’s longstanding foreign policy goals: violently overthrowing the Syrian government.
As the terrorism of Daesh and other extremists grows more intense, and as millions of Syrians have become refugees, the heavy costs of the U.S. government’s “regime change” operation in Syria should come into question. 

Education, healthcare and national rebirth

The independent nationalist Syrian government, now being targeted by Western foreign policy, was born in the struggle against colonialism. It took decades of great sacrifice from the people of Syria to break the country free from foreign domination — first by the French empire and later from puppet leaders. For the last several decades, Syria has been a strong, self-reliant country in the oil-rich Middle East region. It has also been relatively peaceful.
Since winning its independence, Syria’s Baathist leadership has done a great deal to improve the living standards of the population. Between 1970 and 2009, the life expectancy in Syria increased by 17 years. During this time period infant mortality dropped dramatically from 132 deaths per 1,000 live births to only 17.9. According to an article published by the Avicenna Journal of Medicine, these notable changes in access to public health came as a result of the Syrian government’s efforts to bring medical care to the country’s rural areas.
A 1987 country study of Syria, published by the U.S. Library of Congress, describes huge achievements in the field of education. During the 1980s, for the first time in Syria’s history, the country achieved “full primary school enrollment of males” with 85 percent of females also enrolled in primary school. In 1981, 42 percent of Syria’s adult population was illiterate. By 1991, illiteracy in Syria had been wiped out by a mass literacy campaign led by the government.
The name of the main political party in Syria is the “Baath Arab Socialist Party.” The Arabic word “Baath” literally translates to “Rebirth” or “Resurrection.” In terms of living standards, the Baathist Party has lived up to its name, forging an entirely new country with an independent, tightly planned and regulated economy. The Library of Congress’ Country Study described the vast construction in Syria during the 1980s: “Massive expenditures for development of irrigation, electricity, water, road building projects, and the expansion of health services and education to rural areas contributed to prosperity.”
Compared to Saudi-dominated Yemen, many parts of Africa, and other corners of the globe that have never established economic and political independence, the achievements of the Syrian Arab Republic look very attractive. Despite over half a century of investment from Shell Oil and other Western corporations, the CIA World Factbook reports that about 60 percent of Nigerians are literate, and access to housing and medical care is very limited. In U.S.-dominated Guatemala, roughly 18 percent of the population is illiterate, and poverty is rampant across the countryside, according to the CIA World Factbook.
What the Western colonizers failed to achieve during centuries of domination, the independent Syrian government achieved rapidly with help from the Soviet Union and other anti-imperialist countries. The Soviet Union provided Syria with a $100 million loan to build the Tabqa dam on the Euphrates River, which was “considered to be the backbone of all economic and social development in Syria.” Nine-hundred Soviet technicians worked on the infrastructure project which brought electricity to many parts of the country. The dam also enabled irrigation throughout the Syrian countryside.
More recently, China has set up many joint ventures with Syrian energy corporations. According to a report from the Jamestown Foundation, in 2007 China had already invested “hundreds of millions of dollars” in Syria in efforts to “modernize the country’s aging oil and gas infrastructure.”
These huge gains for the Syrian population should not be dismissed and written off, as Western commentators routinely do when repeating their narrative of “Assad the Dictator.” For people who have always had access to education and medical care, it is to trivialize such achievements. But for the millions of Syrians, especially in rural areas, who lived in extreme poverty just a few decades ago, things like access to running water, education, electricity, medical care, and university education represent a huge change for the better.
Like almost every other regime in the crosshairs of U.S. foreign policy, Syria has a strong, domestically-controlled economy. Syria is not a “client state” like the Gulf state autocracies surrounding it, and it has often functioned in defiance of the U.S. and Israel. It is this, not altruistic concerns about human rights, that motivate Western attacks on the country. 

Syria needs reform, not terrorism

In 2012, Syria ratified a new constitution in response to the protests during the Arab Spring. In compliance with the new constitution, Syria held a contested election in 2014, with international observers from 14 countries.
One thing that distinguishes Syria from Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain, and various other U.S.-aligned regimes throughout the region is religious freedom. In Syria, Sunnis, Christians, Alawites, Druze, Jews, and other religious groups are permitted to practice their religious faith freely. The government is secular, and respects the rights of the Sunni Muslim majority as well as religious minorities.
In addition to religious freedom, Syria openly tolerates the existence of two strong Marxist-Leninist parties. The Syrian Communist Party and the Syrian Communist Party (Bakdash) openly operate as part of the anti-imperialist coalition supporting the Baath Arab Socialist Party. Communists lead trade unions and community organizations in Damascus and other parts of the country.
Though Syrian President Bashar Assad is an Alawite, his wife, Asma, is Sunni like the majority of the country. Historically, the biggest opponents of the Syrian government have been supporters of the Muslim brotherhood, with a bloody episode taking place in 1982. Hoping to heal the longstanding tension, President Assad has made many gestures of solidarity toward the Sunni community in recent years. He has made a point of engaging in religious practices not commonly done by Alawites, such as praying in mosques and studying the Quran.
Shortly after fighting began in 2011, the Syrian government granted autonomy to Kurdish regions and transferred political authority to leftist Kurdish nationalist organizations.
Syria’s political system is certainly in need of reform and modernization, and representatives of the Syrian government such as U.N. Ambassador Bashar Al-Jaafari readily admit this. However, the civil war which has raged across Syria for the last five years, is not about reform, democratization or modernization.
The BBC published a “guide to Syrian rebels” in 2013. Among them are not only the infamous “Islamic State” organization, which now horrifies the world, but also the Nusra Front, previously known as Al-Qaeda in Syria. Other organizations with names like the “Islamic Front,” the “Islamic Liberation Front,” and the “Ahfad al-Rasoul Brigades” are also listed.
While Western media presents the Syrian civil war as a “battle for democracy” led by “revolutionaries,” the primary goal of almost every insurgent organization is creating a Sunni caliphate — one that does not actually suit Sunnis though, but rather a perverted politicized version of Sunnism created by Saudi Arabia to ideologically control that region. The unifying religious perspective of the Syrian “rebels” is the interpretation of Sunni Islam practiced and promoted by Saudi Arabia, known as Wahhabism. 

Foreign fighters, chemical weapons and child soldiers

A large number of the insurgents are not Syrian. Impoverished people from throughout the Middle East have been recruited to fight against the Syrian government. Facilities in Bahrain train recruits to kill, and send them to Syria.
Terrorist training facilities exist in many other U.S.-aligned Gulf states. Foreign fighters from as far away as Malaysia and the Philippines have been found among the ranks of the foreign Wahhabi insurgents that are trying to depose the Syrian government.
The flow of violent insurgents into Syria is not accidental. It has been directly facilitated by the U.S. and its allies. The CIA has spent billions of dollars on training camps in Jordan for anti-government fighters.
The U.S.-aligned regimes of Turkey and Saudi Arabia are openly supporting the Nusra Front, the Al-Qaida-linked organization that has already killed tens of thousands of innocent people in Syria. Gen. David Petraeus has called for the U.S. to join these efforts and begin sending arms directly to the Nusra Front.
The Israeli government has made a point of aiding the Wahhabi extremists by providing them medical care in the occupied Golan Heights. Israel has also made a point of targeting allies of the Syrian government with airstrikes.
While Western media has highlighted allegations that the Syrian government has used chemical weapons,Carla Del Ponte from the United Nations confirmed that the foreign-backed insurgents have long been been using sarin nerve gas and other chemical weapons.
As the insurgents make life unlivable in Syria, kidnapping for ransom, bombing schools and hospitals, beheading people, torturing people, they do it with thousands of child soldiers among their ranks. Impoverished children from across the Arab world have been recruited to work toward violently overthrowing the Syrian government, according to UNICEF.
Between 50 and 72 percent of the population lives in areas controlled by the Syrian government. Meanwhile, even USAID confirmed that the turnout in Syria’s 2014 elections was more than 70 percent.
While the barrage of foreign fighters and extremists, aligned with a minority of the population and armed by Western powers and their allies, is committed to bringing down the Syrian government, the Syrian people clearly disagree. The fact that the Syrian government remains strongly intact after a five-year onslaught shows that the country is dedicated to preserving its independence. Time magazine and other mainstream media outlets have even been forced to admit that President Assad is unlikely to be deposed. 

How can the war end?

As foreign fighters have flowed into Syria, hundreds of thousands of people have died over the last five years, and Western media continues to blame the Syrian government for the conflict. However, the war would have been a very short one if not for the foreign support given to the extremists.
As an independent country with a centrally planned economy, Syria has serves as an example to the world. It has proven that without neoliberalism and Western economic domination, it is possible to improve living conditions and develop independently. The Syrian government has made huge sacrifices to aid the Palestinian people and their resistance against Israel, and this has been a contributing factor to Syria’s inclusion on the State Department’s State Sponsors of Terrorism list. Syria has close economic relations with Russia and the Islamic Republic of Iran.
The war in Syria is not a domestic conflict. This is a war imposed on Syria by Israel, the U.S., and other Western capitalist powers. The primary promoter of Wahhabi extremism around the world has been the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, a U.S. client state. Turkey and Jordan, U.S.-aligned countries bordering Syria, keep their borders open so that weapons, supplies and money can continue to flow into the hands of Daesh and other anti-government terrorists.
At least 470,000 people are dead, and millions of others have been forced to become refugees, but Western leaders and their allies do not end their campaign. The insane chorus of “Assad Must Go” has transformed a small, domestic episode of unrest into a full-scale humanitarian crisis. The war has nothing to do with the calls for democratic reform and the peaceful protests of 2011.
As Daesh now threatens the entire world, the consequences of the Wall Street regime change operation, promoted with “human rights” propaganda, are becoming far more extreme. The Syrian government rallies a coalition of Christians, Communists, Islamic Revolutionaries, and other forces who are fighting to maintain stability and defeat Takfiri terrorism. (The term “Takfiri” refers to groups of Sunni Muslims who refer to other Muslims as apostates and seek to establish a caliphate by means of violence.)
The only real peace plan for Syria is for the U.S., France, Britain, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Jordan, and other powers to end their neoliberal crusade. The internationally recognized and recently re-elected Syrian government could easily defeat the insurgents if foreign meddling ceased.
As U.S. media bemoans the humanitarian crisis, somehow blaming on the Syrian government and its president, and the U.S. directly sends its military forces into the country, the people of the world should ask Western leaders and their allies: Why are you prolonging this war? Why can’t you just leave Syria alone? Why do you continue funding and enabling the terrorists? Isn’t five years of civil war enough? Is overthrowing the Syrian government really worth so much suffering and death?

Syria, Bashar al-Jaafari's latest UN Security Council Speech

'Countries that support terrorism are imposing unjust steps against Syrians and exploiting them'

Syria’s Permanent Representative to the UN Bashar al-Jaafari said that there are states that support terrorist organizations in Syria and prevent to put these organizations on terrorism lists, and at the same time they impose unjust steps against the Syrian people and exploit their needs and suffering for political gains.

Al-Jaafari, at a Security Council session held on Friday (27 May 2016) to discuss the situation in the Middle East, said it has become known to everyone that the aforementioned countries support and protect terrorist organizations and cover up their crimes in the Security Council, which was made apparent when certain states refused Russia’s request to include “Ahrar al-Sham movement” and “Jaish al- Islam” on the Security Council’s list of terror groups, despite the fact that these groups are operating in an alliance with Jabhat al-Nusra terror organization on the ground and carrying out terrorist activities.

He affirmed that the terrorist organization of “Jaish Al-Islam” launches rocket shells against civilians in Damascus and Aleppo daily, while “Ahrar Al-Sham” perpetrated terrorist suicide blasts and the latest of its blasts were the two bombings which hit recently the two cities of Jableh and Tartous that left hundreds of casualties.

The Syrian UN Representative added that the aforementioned states rejected yesterday a Syrian request to add what is called “Jaish Mohamad” to terrorists’ list, and name such terrorist organizations “the Syrian moderate armed opposition” and call them to take part in Geneva talks as if there is “ moderate and extremist terrorism .. Halal (Allowed) and Haram (forbidden) terrorism”.

He pointed out that some states claim to care for human rights and the Syrian people, making statements left and right as if their only concern is the safety, stability, welfare, and interests of the Syrians, but in reality these states’ actions on the ground prove otherwise.

Al-Jaafari wondered why the Under-Secretary General of the UN, since he was in Turkey, did not refer to the sad news concerning the exploitation of Syrian children by the Saudi terrorist Abdallah al-Muheseni who plays the role of Mufti for the terrorist organization of Ahrar Al-Sham which is widely spread over areas in the northern countryside of both Aleppo and Idlib, calling for paying attention to these mentioned facts.

Over what the Under-Secretary General said that the two cities of Jableh and Tartous were subjects to an attack by a suicide detonated himself, Al-Jaafari said the least thing can be said about such statement is that “incomplete, and lacks inclusiveness” since He knows that the two terrorist organizations of ISIS and Ahrar al-Sham publicly adopted their perpetrations of the two terrorist explosions of Jableh and Tartous, so consequently he knows the identity of the perpetrator of the two terrorist bombings is known to the UN Under-Secretary General.

Syria’s Representative asserted that claims about the Syrian government preventing humanitarian aid from entering the town of Daraya are baseless, noting that the Syrian government granted the UN 19 agreements to deliver humanitarian aid, but only 3 of those were carried out, asserting that delays in grant agreements only seeks to ensure the security of UN teams.

“How could we talk about putting an end to the sufferings of the Syrians inside and outside the country and ending the humanitarian crisis in light of politicizing the humanitarian issue and utilizing the suffering of the Syrians for political goals, like Erdogan’s statements two days ago who threatened to hinder the Turkish-European agreement on the crossing of refugees if the EU reject to exempt Turkish citizens from entry visas into the EU” al-Jaafari wondered.

The Syrian senior Diplomat also wondered about means of ending the crisis and tackling the humanitarian situation in Syria without dealing seriously with the Saudi, Qatari and Israeli violations of the UN Security Council’s resolutions, particularly resolution no. 2253, pointing out to the continuation of these regimes to financing, training and arming the Takfiri terrorist groups without taking into account the danger of such a behavior on the security and stability of the region and the world.

Commenting on the confusion raised by some parties regarding the humanitarian access, al-Jaafari stressed that the Syrian Government accepted all the medical assistance except tools that could be used by terrorists. Of the 26 requests for humanitarian convoys in May, it had accepted 19, but the United Nations had only sent three, he noted. Voicing Syria’s readiness to cooperate with the UN, he nevertheless underlined that “cooperation is a two-way street”, calling upon the Organization to consult the Government rather than simply criticizing it.

He asserted that any delay in giving permissions was for guaranteeing the safety and security of the humanitarian aid workers, in addition to ensuring that the aid would be delivered to those who deserve it.

He affirmed that the UN and other international organizations couldn’t have delivered the humanitarian aid over the past five years without the cooperation and the facilitations provided by the Syrian Government.

Al-Jaafari noted that talking about terrorism and repeatedly underlying its dangers and the necessity of fighting it doesn’t mean that “we don’t realize the depth of the humanitarian crisis in some of the Syrian areas or we don’t realize the necessity of discussing ways of improving the humanitarian situation in Syria.”

He continued that ending the humanitarian crisis in a sustainable manner can be done through eliminating foreign-backed terrorism seriously and ending the foreign interference in Syria’s internal affairs.

Al-Jaafari concluded by saying that the Syrian Government is committed to pushing the political track forwards as the delegation of the Syrian Arab Republic participated in Geneva talks and the delegation showed seriousness and was committed to the talks, but the problem was imposing the so-called “Riyadh delegation” by some countries as the only interlocutor with preconditions and with a single goal which is foiling the talks.

Commenting on what was said by the US Ambassador that Syria’s Representative doesn’t care about responding to the UN, al-Jaafari said that this is not right because most of his statement was in response to what was mentioned in the report of the UN Secretary-General, referring that there is a huge defect in organizing the delivery of the humanitarian aid to Syria.

“We don’t offend the UN because we are a founding member of this international organization and we have strongly defended it, but the UN is not full of angels as there are devils at this international organization, and when I talk about a certain defect in this organization, I mean those devils in particular,” al-Jaafari clarified.

He continued “We have said tens of times that Turkey is using the humanitarian corridors to transport weapons,” adding that no one had refuted that fact, and recently it has been proved through Turkish sources that Erdogan’s regime is using the humanitarian corridors to transport weapons to the terrorists.

“We, as member states, defend the provisions of the UN Charter which affirms the dignity and sovereignty of the states, and not the intervention of their sovereignty all of the time , and then covering that with the pretext of protecting civilians and providing humanitarian aid,” al-Jaafari said.

27 May 2016

(Video of the speech -in Arabic)



The World Reaps What the Saudis Sow - NYT Editorial Board

MAY 27, 2016  - By the Editorial Board, NYT

Saudi Arabia has frustrated American policy makers for years. Ostensibly a critical ally, sheltered from its enemies by American arms and aid, the kingdom has spent untold millions promoting Wahhabism, the radical form of Sunni Islam that inspired the 9/11 hijackers and that now inflames the Islamic State.

The latest chapter in this long, sorrowful history involves tiny Kosovo. With a population of only 1.8 million people, Kosovo has sent more of its young people per capita than any other country to fight and die in Iraq and Syria. Since 2012, some 314 Kosovars have joined the Islamic State, including two suicide bombers, 44 women and 28 children. Even Belgium, widely seen as a hotbed of extremism after the attacks on Paris and Brussels, lags behind it in the recruitment rankings.

As detailed by Carlotta Gall in a recent article in The Times, Kosovo is in this position largely because Saudi Arabia and other Persian Gulf states have spent years developing and funding a network of imams, mosques and secretive associations there. And while there is no evidence that any group gave money directly and explicitly to persuade Kosovars to go to Syria, senior officials in Kosovo told Ms. Gall that extremist clerics and groups have spent heavily to promote radical Islamic thinking among young and vulnerable people. “The issue is they supported thinkers who promote violence and jihad in the name of protecting Islam,” Fatos Makolli, head of Kosovo’s counterterrorism police, told her.

The United States and NATO invested heavily in helping Kosovo gain independence from Serbia in 2008 and establish democracy. That Saudi Arabia should be using Kosovo as a breeding ground for extremists, or allowing it to be used as a breeding ground by any Saudi entity or citizen, is a cruel reminder of the contradictory and even duplicitous behavior of America’s partners in the Persian Gulf and helps to explain why its relationships with those countries have become increasingly troubled.

Kosovo, rescued from Serbian oppression after months of NATO bombing in 1999, has been known as a tolerant society. For centuries, the Muslim majority has followed the liberal Hanafi version of Islam, which is accepting of others. Since the war, that tradition has been threatened by Saudi-trained imams, their costs paid by Saudi-sponsored charities, preaching the primacy of Shariah law and fostering violent jihad and takfirism, which authorizes the killing of Muslims viewed as heretics.

Most Kosovars have resisted such proselytizing, and officials in Kosovo say that support for the United States and the West remains strong. Yet experts point to a number of reasons the country has been fertile ground for recruitment to radical ideology: a large population of young people living in rural poverty with little hope of jobs; corruption and an attendant lack of faith in government; and, according to a 2015 report by the Kosovar Center for Security Studies, an education system that does not encourage critical thinking.

It remains unclear why Kosovo’s government, as well as the United States and the United Nations officials who administered postwar Kosovo, did not act sooner. The Americans may have erred in assuming that Kosovo’s moderate religious community would prevent extremism from flourishing.

The 9/11 attacks quickly clarified the dangers. Several Saudi organizations in Kosovo were closed, and the Saudi government, which appears to have reduced its aid to Kosovo, now insists that it has imposed strict controls on charities, mosques and clerical teachings. Even so, Kuwait, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates have increased funding for Islamic hard-liners in Kosovo.

The Sunni Arab states still do not seem to understand the extent to which extreme versions of Islam imperil them as well. Although the Saudi royal family relies on the Wahhabi clerics for their political legitimacy, the Islamic State accuses the monarchy of corrupting the faith to preserve its power. Since 2014, there have been 20 terrorist attacks in the kingdom, many staged by ISIS.

The Kosovo government, working with the United States, has acted to combat extremism by adopting new antiterror laws, cracking down on the money laundering that underwrites radical groups and stepping up police investigations. The flow of Kosovo’s citizens heading to fight with the Islamic State apparently has fallen to zero in the last seven months, while the number of Kosovars on the battlefield is down to 140.

Yet at least two radical imams continue to preach in Kosovo’s capital, Pristina, and draw crowds of young men. Much work is still to be done to protect the independence and spirit of tolerance that Kosovo worked so hard to achieve.

A version of this editorial appears in print on May 28, 2016, on page A16 of the New York edition with the headline: The World Reaps What the Saudis Sow.


Related | How Kosovo Was Turned Into Fertile Ground for ISIS

Syria: French Academic Exposes Left-Wing Charlatans as Harbingers of Terrorism

Bruno Guigue
Arret Sur Info

Translation by VANESSA BEELEY

Following the death of a prominent leader of the arab-lebanese resistance, murdered by the Zionist forces while on Syrian soil, I address this open letter to all left-wing intellectuals and activists who have aligned themselves with the Syrian “revolution” and believe that by dreaming of the fall of Damascus, they are defending the Palestinian cause.

In the spring of 2011, you were telling us that the Arab revolutions represented an unprecedented hope for the peoples living under oppressive, bloodthirsty tyrants. Our excessive optimism persuaded us to listen to your arguments for this miraculously flourishing democracy and your proclamations on the universal human rights.

You almost persuaded us that these popular uprisings deposing the Tunisian and Egyptian dictators were going to universally sweep tyranny from the arab world, in Libya as in Syria, in Yemen as in Bahrain and who knows where else.

However the flaws in this evolving narrative began to reveal themselves. The first glaring flaw appeared in Libya. A UN resolution, adopted by the Security Council to ostensibly save endangered civilians, transformed itself into a blank cheque for the military removal of a head of state that had become undesirable for his western partner states. This “regime change” operation can be considered one of the worst moments of the neo-conservative era, accomplished on behalf of the US by two powerful European nations in search of neo-imperialist influence, it precipitated a disaster for which Libya is still paying the price. The collapse of this unitary state in its infancy delivered the country into the hands of the tribes & factions whose unbridled ambitions were driven by oil lusting western scavengers.

Sirte, Libya

Despite this, the “good souls” among you managed to find “extenuating circumstances” for this operation thus justifying the demands for a similar fate for the government in Damascus. Consequently, the winds of revolution that were blowing in syria seemed to validate your interpretation of events and retrospectively provided a rationale for the humanitarian warmongering unleashed against the Tripoli potentate.

However, far from the mainstream media arena, certain analysts observed that the Syrian people were not unanimous. The anti-government protests arose in certain towns, traditional bastions of the Islamist opposition and these feverish protests by those impoverished by the financial crisis did not present any real threat to the government in Damascus.

You chose to ignore these rational, logical warning signs. Simply because these facts did not correspond with your narration of events, you extracted only that which suited your interpretation. Where these objective observers saw a polarisation of syrian society, you only wanted to see a bloody tyrant assassinating his people. Where a dispassionate view would have allowed you to discern the weaknesses but also the strengths of the Syrian state, you deployed a self righteous rhetoric to bring to trial a government that is not the only perpetrator of violence inside Syria.

Tens of thousands march in support of the Syrian Government. Photo: Bassem Tellawi AP

You saw many protests against Bashar Al Assad yet you failed to see the overwhelming marches in support of the government and the proposed reforms, these marches filled the streets of Damascus, Aleppo and Tartous but you didnt see them. You have highlighted the macabre accounts of the government victims but failed to report those of the victims of the armed opposition. In your eyes, there are good and bad victims. There are victims that you talk about and those you don't want to hear about. You have deliberately chosen to see one side and ignore the other.

At the same time, the French government, whose domestic policies you openly criticize to maintain the illusion of independence, has entirely supported your narrative. Curiously, your narrative coincides perfectly with that of French Foreign Minister, Laurent Fabius, the master of servility, combining unconditional support for the Israeli war against the Palestinians with a Pavlovian alignment with the US leadership and hostility towards arab resistance. You seem unperturbed by your apparent marriage to the French Foreign Office.

You were defending the Palestinians while dining with their assassins behind their backs. You even accompanied french state officials on a visit to the State of Israel. You are willing accomplices to a French President who has declared that he will ” always support the Israeli leaders”. It seems that was not enough to scandalise you and you still joined everyone else who boarded the plane with the President.

Netanyahu with Hollande. Photo: AFP

You correctly condemned US military intervention in Iraq in 2003. You were left “cold” by the carpet bombing for democracy and you doubted the educational value of surgical strikes. However, your indignation at such “high tech” gunboat diplomacy seems bizarrely selective. Now you justify the hue and cry against Damascus that you found intolerable 10 years earlier, against Baghdad. A decade has sufficed to render you so malleable that you envisage the salvation of the Syrian people to be a rain of cruise missiles targeting a country that has done nothing to harm you.

You have denied your anti-imperialist convictions to be enthusiastically wedded to the Washington agenda. Shamelessly, not only were you applauding the B52s but you upheld the most grotesque US propaganda, when you should have been immunised against it by the Iraqi precedent and the unforgettable lies from the Bush era.

Bush addressing 25,000 military 2005

While you were inundating the French press with your inaccuracy, an outstanding American investigative journalist tore the pitiful chemical weapons “false flag” to shreds. A false flag destined to pin responsibility for a chemical attack onto Bashar Al Assad despite no international organisation supporting these accusations. The experts at the Massachussets Institute of Technology and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons even went so far as to accuse the opposition of carrying out the attacks.

Ignoring facts and concealing them where necessary you played your miserable part in this orchestra of lies. Even worse, you continue to do so. Even Obama had said he didnt believe it, but you persisted in regurgitating your lies like guard dogs that bark long after the intruder has escaped. To what aim? To justify the bombing, by your own government, of a small sovereign state, whose greatest crime was to resist the imperialist order. To come to the aid of a Syrian “revolution” whose true face you have hidden behind a mask, perpetuating the myth of a moderate, democratic opposition that, in reality, exists only in the meeting rooms of luxury hotels in Doha, Paris or Ankara.

You have therefore exalted this “Syrian revolution” but have turned a blind eye to its mafia practices, its sectarian ideology and its troubling and dubious funding. You have painstakingly obscured the interfaith hatred that inspires this morbid aversion to other faiths, a hatred held in place by the Wahhabi ideological cement.

You knew that the secular Baathist government acted as a life insurance for all minorities inside Syria but you persisted in discrediting and ridiculing those who came to the defence of the persecuted Christian communities. But that's not all. On the day of reckoning there remains one ultimate ignominy: you have endorsed the politics of Laurent Fabius who has declared that Al Nusra, Syrian branch of Al Qaeda is “doing a good job”. No compassion for the mutilated civilians on the streets of Homs or the Alawites of Zahra massacred by the “rebels”, in your view these human beings have no significance.

Mustafa Badreddine

Between 2011 and 2016, the masks have fallen. You refer to the international law but you applaud its violation against a Sovereign State. You pretend to promote democracy for the Syrians but you are the harbingers of the terrorism that is prolonging their suffering. You say you defend the Palestinians but you are on the same side as Israel. When a Zionist missile is launched at Syria, don't worry, it will never harm your friends. Thanks to Israel, thanks to the CIA, and thanks to you, these courageous “rebels” will continue to work towards a “brighter” future for Syria under the Takfiri banner. The Zionist missile will, in fact, kill one of the leaders of the Arab resistance that you have cynically betrayed.

Bruno Guigue | May 13, 2016

Article original:

Translation by Vanessa Beeley for 21st Century Wire




The War on Syria and Noam Chomsky

By Ghali Hassan.
Axis of Logic
Wednesday, Sep 4, 2013

"The West won the world not by the superiority of its ideas or values or religion, but rather by its superiority in applying organized violence. Westerners often forget this fact, non-Westerners never do.”
- Samuel P. Huntington, 1996, p.51.

For centuries, Western imperialism has terrorised the world, using violence to occupy lands and expropriate resources and markets. From Asia and the Middle East to Africa, millions of innocent people, mostly women and children have been killed to satisfy Western appetite for violence and barbarism, and millions more have become displaced and refugees. Enhance by sophisticated false propaganda to manipulate public opinions and justify aggression, Western imperialism led by the U.S. is the greatest menace to the survival of humanity today.

After more than two years of covert war, including economic sanctions on food and medicine, the U.S. and its allies or vassals (France, Britain and Israel in particular) are preparing their armies to wage overt aggressive war on the people of Syria citing the same lie that led to the bloodbath in Iraq, “chemical weapons”. As most people know, the U.S. war on the Iraqi people was one of the most unjust barbaric wars that have ever been inflicted on defenceless nations, a major international crime.

Sadly, the thirst for another bloodbath among Western imperialists is as big as ever. In order to sell the war to the American people and world public, Western leaders invoke the Nazi’s beloved phrase of “humanitarian intervention” as a “moral justification”. It is the same “moral justification” that terrorised the Iraqi people and caused the deaths of more than one-and-a-half million innocent Iraqis, mostly women and children. After more than a decade of murderous military occupation, Iraq –once a progressive nation and an envy of many nations – is a deliberately destroyed cauldron of violence, human misery and deprivation for everyone to see. Instability and violence have gripped Iraq since the murderous invasion. Libya is the same. The West-invented “Humanitarian intervention” is a convenient tool to manipulate public opinions and mask Western violence as a “just war”.

The U.S. and its vassals are accusing (without credible evidence) the Syrian Government of using “chemical weapons against civilians”. The chemical attack in Syria is one of many lies fabricated by the Mossad (the Israeli Gestapo) and fed to the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and then spread by the Israeli and Western media. It is a planned and baseless pretext to justify aggression. The current UN team investigating the chemical attack takes its orders from Washington and was instructed by the U.S. to only determine if chemical weapons had been used and not who used them. According to Michael Mandel, a professor of Law at Osgoode Hall Law School of York University in Canada, “because the U.S. promised to intervene militarily if gas were used, giving the [terrorists] who are on the run [chased by the Syrian Army] a huge incentive to use it and giving the Syrian Government an equally huge disincentive”.

Carla Del Ponte, UN Commissioner on Syria

According to the Minnesota Mint Press News (29 August 2013), Syrian residents in Ghouta have confirmed that Saudi-armed terrorists were behind the chemical attack on their neighbourhood on the outskirt of the Syrian Capital Damascus. In a detailed report on the use of chemical weapons in Syria by UN commissioner on Syria, Carla Del Ponte stated:

"Our investigators have been interviewing victims, doctors and field hospitals. According to their report of last week, which I have seen, there are strong, concrete suspicions but not yet incontrovertible proof of the use of sarin gas, from the way the victims were treated. I was a little bit stupefied by the first indications we got ... they were about the use of nerve gas by the opposition."

However, the U.S. dismissed the report and insisted on an “inspection” that covers all Syria. A recent Russian report presented to the UN Security Council, show that the Western-backed terrorists were responsible for the March 2013 chemical attack in Khan al-Assad.

In Dec. 2012 the US State Dept. posted a declaration describing the Al-Nusra Front as an alias of Al-Qaeda in Iraq. The group has claimed responsibility for killing scores of people and stated its plan to replace the Assad gov't with a strict Islamic state.
Furthermore, in May 2013, OE Watch reported that Turkish security forces found sarin gas in the homes of suspected Western-backed (al-Nusra terrorists).

The gas was reportedly to be used to make bombs. It is most likely that, Israel, the C.I.A., Saudi Arabia, Britain and France are complicit in supplying the terrorists with chemical weapons in order to justify Western aggression against Syria. In fact U.S. President Obama (indirectly) suggested the use of chemical weapons by drawing a “red line” on their use. That is, if chemical weapons are used, we will go to war. Therefore, the U.S. and Israel have an obvious motive in accusing the Syrian Government of using chemical weapons.

A schematic of a white phosphorus bomb as used against the Palestinian people in Gaza on January 3, 2009. Is this not a chemical weapon? Israel also used white phosphorus in its 34-day war with Hezbollah in Lebanon in 2006 (and lost). The U.S. military in Iraq also used this weapon during a November 2004 operation against insurgents in the city of Fallujah.

One wonders why when Israel and the U.S. use chemical weapons, including white phosphorus, napalm, cluster bombs, and depleted uranium to murder innocent civilians (in broad daylight), most Western governments and the media turned blind eye. In the 2008/2009 the Israeli fascist regime killed over 1500, innocent civilians, including 400 children in unprovoked attacks on an entirely defenceless and besieged population of the Gaza Concentration Camp in Palestine. Despite world-wide condemnation of the Israeli regime, John Kerry and the mostly Zionist U.S. Congress rushed to praise Israel’s terror and provided Israel with more cash, weapons, including white phosphorous and cluster bombs and diplomatic backing. There were no red lines in Palestine or in Iraq, except those drawn in Palestinians and Iraqis blood. The U.S. and its vassals view war crimes through an imperialist lens of “how this serves our interests”.

Photo: A white phosphorus bomb raining down on Palestinians in Gaza in 2009. New York medical staff reported on the toxicity of white phosphorus:

"Oral ingestion of white phosphorus in humans has been demonstrated to result in pathologic changes to the liver and kidneys. The ingestion of a small quantity of white phosphorus can cause gastrointestinal complaints such as nausea, abdominal cramps, and vomiting. Individuals with a history of oral ingestion have been noted to pass phosphorus-laden stool (“smoking stool syndrome”). The accepted lethal dose is 1 mg/kg, although the ingestion of as little as 15 mg has resulted in death." - 

Like Iraq and Libya, Syria is targeted on behalf of the fascist state of Israel. The aim is to control the Middle East military by destroying any resistance to Israel's fascist (Zionist) ideology. After the atrocity in Libya, the U.S. and its allies resorted to using proxy terrorists to implement their imperialist agenda. The so-called "rebels" (a common euphemism for Western-backed terrorists in Western media) are a collection of U.S.-Israel backed terrorists and foreign mercenaries. They are openly recruited, trained, armed, and directed by the U.S., Israel, NATO members and U.S. allies, including the disgraceful and corrupt dictators of the Middle East – Jordan, Qatar, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, etc. (New York Times). In short, they are foot soldiers used to facilitate Western military invasions and the destabilisation of the region. If the so-called “rebels” are truly Muslims fighting for democracy, why are they destroying Syria and terrorising the Syrian people?

True Muslims do not fight on U.S.-Israel’s side against fellow Muslims. However, associating the terrorists with Islam is part of the U.S.-Israel racist campaign to demonise Islam and justify war against Muslims. Like Iraq and Libya, once Syria has been completely destroyed, a group of U.S.-trained expatriates and criminals will be installed as a “government” to legitimise the expropriation of the nation’s land, natural resources and market. The terrorists will be encouraged to fight each other for turf or will be airlifted to soften and prepare the ground of the next target. Just take a look at what is happening in the Middle East. Israel is the biggest and only beneficiary of this “creative chaos” strategy.


Gilbert Achcar | Bernard Henry-Levy |Fawaz Gerges

The Western-orchestrated “Arab Spring” provides a useful platform not only for anti-Muslim neo-fascist, such as Gilbert Achcard, Bernard-Henry Levy and Fawaz Gerges to promote their hostility to Islam, but also an opportunity for Western apologists to show their loyalty and obsequiousness to Western imperialism. A careful reading of the “Left” liberals’ response to the Western-backed terror in Syria, reveals that the “Left” liberals have display a staggering level of complacency, complicity and outright hostility to the Syrian people. Representatives of the milieu of the “Left” liberals led by the like of Noam Chomsky have lost credibility. Their arguments are part of the standard propaganda talking points that serve Israel-U.S. Zionist ideology. Strikingly, not only the “Left” liberals failed to think about Israel-U.S. Zionist ideology, they made serious efforts to spread Western propaganda that the war on Syria is a “civil war” between Syrians.

Noam Chomsky

Noam Chomsky, the darling of the “Left” and the so-called “arguably the most important intellectual alive today” is leading the propaganda campaign. In recent interviews, Chomsky engaged in what can best be described as, highly misleading imperialist propaganda. On 16 June 2013, Chomsky, told al-akhbar newspaper:

“First of all, Israel was not opposed to Assad. He has been more or less the kind of dictator they wanted. He has done the kind of things they wanted. The U.S. has no opposition to Assad. He was cooperating on intelligence and they did not like everything, but he was pretty satisfactory.” (Al-akhbar English, 16 June 2013).

The same propaganda was repeated on The Republic website:

“Israel has done nothing to indicate that it is trying to bring down the Assad regime. There are growing claims that the West intends to supply the opposition with arms. I believe this is quite misleading. The fact of the matter is, that were the United States and Israel interested in bringing down the Syrian regime there is a whole package of measures they could take before they came to the arms-supply option. All these other options remain available, including, for example, America encouraging Israel to mobilize its forces along the northern border, a move that would not produce any objections from the international community and which would compel the regime to withdraw its forces from a number of frontline positions and relieve the pressure on the opposition. But this has not happened, nor will it, so long as America and Israel remain unwilling to bring down Assad regime. They may not like the regime, but it is nevertheless a regime that is well practiced in accommodating their demands and any unknown alternative might prove worse in this respect. Much better, then, to watch the Syrians fight and destroy each other”.

What a distortion of reality by Chomsky!

Israel's Missile attack on port city of Latakia

Chomsky's distortion of reality is based on a deeply-entrenched Zionist belief, that Israel is innocent of any crimes. To paraphrase Frantz Fanon, Chomsky has shown that he is unable to deal with cognitive dissonance and has worked hard to “protect his core belief, often rationalising, ignoring and even denying anything that doesn’t fit in with the his core belief”.Such false propaganda designed to shield Israel and allows Israelis to believe falsely that they’re innocent bystanders, even victims. The truth is Israel is directly involved in the foreign-backed aggression against Syria. In coordination with the U.S. and the Turkish army, the Israeli army continues its unprovoked aggression against Syria, including the recent missiles attack (05 July 2013) on the port city of Latakia. Iran is thrown in the mix by the “Left” liberals to deflect attention away from Israel. It is Israel, not Iran, which is deeply involved in the war on Syria.

Together, with the U.S., Israel is the major supplier of weapons, including chemical weapons to the terrorists to unleash against the Syrian people. Once the Western-backed terrorists were on the run, chased by the Syrian Army, Israel in coordination with the U.S. and Turkey came to their aid. The latest atrocity is a case in point. Chomsky failed to even mention that since the Western-backed violence erupted in Syria, Israel has been the only state that has openly attacked Syria unprovoked. This is consistent with Chomsky’s support for Israel, as he often said that he is “the biggest supporter of the state of Israel”.

Amos Yaldin, Israeli Intelligence Chief

Much of the war on Syria has been planned by pro-Israel Zionist think-tank like the Brookings Institute in the U.S. It is part of Israel’s Zionist ideology to dominate the Middle East by force and remove any resistance to Israel’s Zionist expansion. It is Israel which driving the U.S. to war on Syria. As former Israeli Intelligence Chief, Amos Yaldin told the audience at the Israel Policy Forum in February 2013:

“And this [Syrian] military, which is a huge threat to Israel, is now also weakening and, in a way, disintegrating. We still have risk from Syria – a risk of being an al-Qaeda country, a Somalia-type country – but from military point of view, each one of these is less dangerous than the Syrian regular army.”

In addition, the Israeli army (in coordination with the Turkish army) is on full alert on the border with Syria and coordinating with the terrorists. Furthermore, with the backing of the Israeli army, the terrorists have recentlyoccupied the UN border post in Israeli-occupied Golan Heights. They were subsequently defeated by the Syrian Army and fled into the Israeli-occupied part of the Golan. As a result of the violence, the Austrian UN “peace-keeping” force withdrew from the area. The entire Middle East has been turned into a bloodbath specifically to enhance Israel military dominance and advance Israel’s Zionist-fascist ideology.

Hundreds of thousands of Syrians rallied in Sabaa Bahrat Square in Damascus on Wednesday in support of President Bashar al-Assad. The great majority of Syrians support Assad and the government. What is happening is not a civil war as the western media describes it. These rallies are reminiscent of the great marches by the Libyan people who supported Moammar Kaddafi before the western-backed terrorists tortured and murdered him.

In another interview with the Lebanese newspaper the Daily Star (18 June 2013), Chomsky went to great length to portray the U.S.-Israel war on Syria in an ignorant and devious term:“Syria is destroying itself”. He said: “The country is heading toward suicide, it is destroying itself and it is very dangerous.”In Chomsky parlance: It is a civil war between the Syrian people (“Sunni versus Shiite”) and we are not involved. What a crass dishonesty, false propaganda and mind-boggling distortions of reality. Chomsky knows that there is no civil war taking place in Syria. He knows that Syria is under Western-backed terrorist attacks. Chomsky knows very well who the perpetrators of the violence in Syria are and who their backers are. From the outset (March 2011), it has been Western-backed terrorists (not “peaceful demonstrators”) who have been wreaking havoc on Syria and killing civilians who opposed them. Nowhere in Chomsky’s interviews has he acknowledged that the U.S. has been training, financing, and arming the terrorist in for almost two years. He is for a UN-backed war on Syria.

Like many Western propagandists, Chomsky’s aim is to mislead the public that sectarian hate exists among Muslims and that the Syrian people are fighting among themselves. The so-called “sectarian violence” is part of the U.S.-Israel “creative chaos” strategy to fragment and divide the Middle East along ethnic and religious lines. Chomsky fails to even mention that Syria is a pluralistic society and that the overwhelming majority of the Syrian people support President Bashar al-Assad and the Syrian legitimate government. As Russia’s President Vladimir Putin accurately observed:

“The Syrian Government is the best speaker on behalf of the Syrian people and not those liver-eating terrorists”.

Chomsky knows very well that the war in Syria is not between the Syrian people, but between the Syrian legitimate Government and foreign-backed terrorists and criminal mercenaries. It is a well-known fact that what the U.S.

Members of the "Free Syrian Army" so-called using a child to behead a prisoner shown in a video the FSA circulated. Der Spiegel described the "rebels" methods of torture and slitting throats in March 2012 reporting between 200 and 250 "traitors" slaughtered by the terrorists.

and it allies, including Israel and the Gulf dictators call “rebels" are foreign-backed terrorists and mercenaries that include al-Qaeda terrorists. Their crimes ranging from eating human flesh, cutting throats, beheadings, abducting and slaughtering clergymen and scholars, recruiting children, robbing factories and transporting them to Turkey and committing hundreds of terrorists acts. We know now that the U.S. and its allies have been openly training the terrorists and supplying them with weapons and cash.

Even Chomsky’s beloved Zionist newspapers, the despicable New York Times and the Washington Post have acknowledged the U.S. role in financing and arming the terrorists against the legitimate Syrian Government. According to the Wall Street Journal, President Obama’s legal team has warned him that arming the terrorists violates international law. The terrorist were directed by their supporters (“Friends of Syria”) to attack population centres (cities and towns) as primary battle grounds to give the impression that the terrorist attacks are in fact a “civil war” between the Syria people. It is consistent with U.S.-Israel policy of targeting the civilian populations.

It is important to keep in mind that Chomsky is not just a Zionist-propagandist. Chomsky is a global propaganda corporation. His repetitive and cheap propaganda are published by his supporters in the Zionist media and spread around the world. The “Chomsky Cult” is the equivalent of BBC or CNN propaganda. It is true that Chomsky has called the U.S. and Israel “terrorist states that pose the greatest threat to world’s peace”. His empty rhetoric is designed to disguise his main propaganda thesis that, “the U.S. is the greatest and freest country in the world”, and blames the USon Israel's war crimes rather than Israel itself. While Chomsky often criticised U.S. foreign policy, he is not fundamentally against U.S. imperialism. If he is honest, Chomsky needs to ask himself whose side he is on, a U.S.-Israel led murderous Zionism or a civilised community of diverse nations.

Finally, here in Australia, it is the last week of the election campaign and it is used to promote aggression, regurgitating Obama’s threat against the people of Syria. Meanwhile, the Australian Government – an obedient U.S. lapdog – is celebrating its one month Presidency of the UN Security Council. Australia’s main goal in September will be to please the U.S. regime and unconditionally supports U.S. terror in all its forms and at all costs. As the violence escalates in Syria, Australian immigration officials are busy issuing passports to Australian mercenaries joining the West-backed terror in Syria. According to the Time News, “Australians now make up the largest contingent from any developed nation in the Syrian [foreign terrorist] forces”.

Moreover, Australia’s Foreign Minister, Bob Carr (a carbon copy of his predecessor, the ignorant Alexander Downer) has called for the assassination of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in order to change the Government. Imagine the outrage had it been a Muslim leader calling for the assassination of Kevin Rudd or the ignorant Bob Carr himself. However, most Australians have none of it, if it will not stop a few thousands desperate refugees fleeing imperialism terror and trying to reach Australia by boat.

Speaking at the UN General Assembly in December 1964 in New York, the Cuban revolutionary Ernesto Che Guevara described imperialism as:

“A carnivorous animal that feeds on unarmed peoples. […] That is what distinguishes the imperial ‘white men’”.

The only way to defeat this carnivorous animal is by uniting anti-imperialist local and global forces. It is a test of conscience for every Westerner and proof of whether Western civilization is anything more than a facade for brute barbarism.

Ghali Hassan is an independent researcher and writer living in Australia.

Read the bio and more articles by Axis of Logic columnist Ghali Hassan

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