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False flag poisonings

News History of American False Flag Operations Recommended Links False flag operations as an important part of demonization of the enemy strategy Skripal poisoning Litvinenko poisoning
Douma gas attack Khan Sheikhoun gas attack   Vault 7 scandal Operation Gladio - Wikipedia Neoliberal war on reality or the importance of controlling the narrative
Deception as an art form Noble Lie Nation under attack meme Machiavellism Guardians of Power Label "conspiracy theorist" as a form of censorship
The Deep State Media-Military-Industrial Complex The Grand Chessboard Elite Theory And the Revolt of the Elite Inverted Totalitarism "Seventeen agencies" memo about Russian influence on elections
Edward Snowden as Symbol of Resistance to National Security State Facebook as Giant Database about Users Social Sites as intelligence collection tools Big Uncle is Watching You Neocolonialism as Financial Imperialism Systematic Breach of Vienna Convention
Is national security state in the USA gone rogue ?   Allan Dulles Mystery of Building 7 Collapse Ray McGovern William Binney
American Exceptionalism New American Militarism Neoconservatism as an attack dog of neoliberalism Neo-fashism Humor Etc
 

In the UK case the decline of neoliberalism since 2008 was closely interconnected with gradual the loss of income from former colonies and the decline of North Sea oil and gas reserves. Staying in the EU against the will of the people will continue to further drain resources to Germany, which has structurally colonialized Western Europe.  So in 2018 the UK is in deep economic trouble Brexit or no Brexit.

That's why May government resorted to creation of an external enemy such as Russia: using an incident such as the Skripal affair to deflect the people from focusing on removing their government leaders. So this is British version of Russiagate: generating mass hate of Russia to deflect people's anger  from the neoliberal politicians and use Putin as the scapegoat.

The UK Royals weddings and babies also help, but they proved to be insufficient.  Meanwhile it is clear the UK government is up to the neck in Steele dossier with the solid trail of evidence such as Christophe Steele, Joseph Mifsid, and Gianni Pittella. See for example

It is important to make those leads disappear from public attantion and Skripal affair fits the biil. 

So something like Skripal incident  was badly needed and would happened even if Skriplas did nto suffer from ffod or some other  poisoning on march 4, 2018.

 

France, like the UK, has extracted the wealth from their former colonies and facing a reduction in tribute from these sources. Macron has attempted to maintain control of some colonies such as Mali and really wants to conquer Syria. I suspect the meetings between Macron and MbS will result in an agreement for Saudi Arabia to buy French weapons while France getting financial aid to expand French troop bases in Syria.

Somehow, the current revolution in France is blacked out in the Western Media. Videos of the current revolution are common on Youtube such as: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g21_myERteQ

Almost all sectors of the French society are protesting against the neo-feudal policies of Macron, FIRE economy participants and his dwarves in the National Assembly. There are strikes among:

For a schedule of the rolling strikes in France see: http://www.cestlagreve.fr/

Macron has already deployed the CRS assassins and the street war will begin when EU police and military invade to crush to protestors. This will be far more violent than May 1968 and may usher in the 6th Republic. Unfortunately, Macron would prefer the cities to burn rather than resign and turnover the government to the President of the Senate.

The EU is also experiencing internal dissent with the Visegrad four (Hungary, Poland, Czech Republic and Slovakia) plus Italy and Austria and thus needs an external enemy to distract its members. I suspect that a Ukrainian invasion of DPR/LPR will once again be used as a flash point create "two minutes of hate" against Russia :
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t4zYlOU7Fpk

These EU conflicts will not end peacefully as the system will fight back rather than step aside.

 

There was three high profile poisoning cases which have several characteristics of a "false flag operation":

Skripal case is the most recent.  One of the best outline of such Gladio style-operation was given in UNZ review (The Unz Review):

Lies and the unapologetic denial of reality:

In a 2015 article entitled “A society of sexually frustrated Pinocchios” I wrote the following:

I see a direct cause and effect relationship between the denial of moral reality and the denial of physical reality. I can’t prove that, of course, but here is my thesis: Almost from day one, the early western civilization began by, shall we say, taking liberties with the truth, which it could bend, adapt, massage and repackage to serve the ideological agenda of the day. It was not quite the full-blown and unapologetic relativism of the 19th century yet, but it was an important first step. With “principles” such as the end justifies the means and the wholesale violation of the Ten Commandants all “for the greater glory of God” the western civilization got cozy with the idea that there was no real, objective truth, only the subjective perception or even representation each person might have thereof. Fast forward another 10 centuries or so and we end up with the modern “Gayropa” (as Europe is now often referred to in Russia): not only has God been declared ‘dead’ and all notions of right and wrong dismissed as “cultural”, but even objective reality has now been rendered contingent upon political expediency and ideological imperatives.

I went on to quote George Orwell by reminding how he defined “doublethink” in his book 1984:

“To know and not to know, to be conscious of complete truthfulness while telling carefully constructed lies, to hold simultaneously two opinions which canceled out, knowing them to be contradictory and believing in both of them, to use logic against logic, to repudiate morality while laying claim to it (…) To tell deliberate lies while genuinely believing in them, to forget any fact that has become inconvenient, and then, when it becomes necessary again, to draw it back from oblivion for just as long as it is needed, to deny the existence of objective reality

and I concluded by saying that “The necessary corollary from this state of mind is that only appearances matter, not reality”.

This is exactly what we are observing; not only in the silly Skripal nerve-gas assassination story but also in all the rest of the Russophobic nonsense produced by the AngloZionist propaganda machine including the “Litvinenko polonium murder” and the “Yushchenko dioxin poisoning“. The fact that neither nerve-gas, nor polonium nor dioxin are in any way effective murder weapons does not matter in the least: a simple drive-by shooting, street-stabbing or, better, any “accident” is both easier to arrange and impossible to trace. Fancy assassination methods are used when access to the target is very hard or impossible (as was the case with Ibn al-Khattab, whose assassination the Russians were more than happy to take credit for; this might also have been the case with the death of Yasser Arafat). But the best way of murdering somebody is to simply make the body disappear, making any subsequent investigation almost impossible. Finally, you can always subcontract the assassination to somebody else like, for example, when the CIA tried and failed, to murder Grand Ayatollah Mohammad Hussain Fadlallah by subcontracting his bombing to its local “Christian” allies, killing over 80 innocent people in the process. There is plenty of common crime in the UK and to get somebody to rob and stab Skripal would have probably been the easiest version. That’s assuming that the Russians had any reason to want him dead, which they self-evidently didn’t.

But here is the important thing: every single criminal or intelligence specialist in the West understands all of the above. But that does not stop the Ziomedia from publishing articles like this one “A Brief History of Attempted Russian Assassinations by Poison” which also lists people poisoned by Russians:

The only possible conclusion from this list is this: there is some kind of secret lab in Russia where completely incompetent chemists try every poison known to man, not on rats or on mice, but on high profile AngloZionist-supported political activists, preferably before an important political event.

Right.

By the way, the gas allegedly used in the attack, “Novichok”, was manufactured in Uzbekistan and the cleanup of the factory producing it was made by, you guessed it, a US company. Just saying…

In any halfway honest and halfway educated society, those kind of articles should result in the idiot writing it being summarily fired for gross incompetence and the paper/journal posting it being discredited forever. But in our world, the clown who wrote that nonsense (Elias Groll, a Harvard graduate and – listen to this – a specialist of “cyberspace and its conflicts and controversies” (sic)) is a staff writer of the award-winning Foreign Policy magazine.

So what does it tell us, and future historians, when this kind of crap is written by a staff writer of an “award winning” media outlet? Does it not show that our society has now reached a stage in its decay (I can’t call that “development”) where lies become the norm? Not only are even grotesque and prima facie absurd lies accepted, they are expected (if only because they reinforce the current ideological Zeitgeist. The result? Our society is now packed with first, zombified ideological drones who actually believe any type of officially proclaimed of nonsense and, second, by cowards who lack the basic courage to denounce even that which they themselves know to be false.

Lies, however ridiculous and self-evidently stupid, have become the main ingredient of the modern political discourse. Everybody knows this and nobody cares. When challenged on this, the typical defense used is always the same: “you are the only person saying this – I sure ever heard this before!”.

Willful ignorance as a universal cop-out

We all know the type. You tell somebody that his/her theory makes absolutely no sense or is not supported by facts and the reply you get is some vaguely worded refusal to engage in an disputation. Initially, you might be tempted to believe that, indeed, your interlocutor is not too bright and not too well read, but eventually you realize that there is something very different happening: the modern man actually makes a very determined effort not to be capable of logical thought and not to be informed of the basic facts of the case. And what is true for specific individuals is even more true of our society as a whole. Let’s take one simple example: Operation Gladio:

Gladio” is really an open secret by now. Excellent books and videos have been written about this and even the BBC has made a two and a half hour long video about it. There is even an entire website dedicated to the story of this huge, continent-wide, terrorist organization specializing in false flag operations. That’s right: a NATO-run terrorist network in western Europe involved in false flag massacres like the infamous Bologna train station bombing. No, not the Soviet KGB backing the Baader-Meinhof Red Army Faction or the Red Brigades in Italy. No, the US and West European governments organizing, funding and operating a terrorist network directed at the people of Western, not Eastern, Europe. Yes, at their own people! In theory, everybody should know about this, the information is available everywhere, even on the hyper-politically correct Wikipedia. But, again, nobody cares.

The end of the Cold War was marked by a seemingly endless series of events which all provided a pretext for AngloZionist interventions (from the Markale massacres in Bosnia, to the Srebrenica “genocide”, to the Racak massacre in Kosovo, to the “best” and biggest one of them all, 9/11 of course). Yet almost nobody wondered if the same people or, at least, the same kind of people who committed all the Gladio crimes might be involved. Quite the opposite: each one of these events was accompanied by a huge propaganda campaign mindlessly endorsing and even promoting the official narrative, even when it self-evidently made no sense whatsoever (like 2 aircraft burning down 3 steel towers). As for Gladio, it was conveniently “forgotten”.

There is a simple principle in psychology, including, and especially in criminal psychology which I would like to prominently restate here:

The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior

Every criminologist knows that and this is why criminal investigators place so much importance on the “modus operandi”, i.e. the particular way or method a suspect or a criminal chooses in the course of the execution of his/her crimes. That is also something which everybody knows. So let’s summarize this in a simple thesis:

Western regimes have a long and well-established track record of regularly executing bloody false-flag operations in pursuit of political objectives, especially those providing them with a pretext to justify an illegal military aggression.

Frankly, I submit that the thesis above is really established not only by a preponderance of evidence but beyond a reasonable doubt. Right?

Maybe. But that is also completely irrelevant because nobody gives a damn! Not the reporters who lie for a living nor, even less so, the brainwashed zombies who read their nonsense and take it seriously. The CIA tried to kill Fidel Castro over 600 times – who cares?! All we know is that the good folks at Langley would never, ever, kill a Russian in the UK, out of respect for international law, probably…

That willful ignorance easily defeats history, facts or logic.

Here is a simple question a journalist could ask: “would the type of people who had no problems blowing up an large train station, or bringing down three buildings in downtown New York, have any hesitation in using a goofy method to try kill a useless Russian ex-spy if that could justify further hostile actions against a country which they desperately need to demonize to justify and preserve the current AngloZionist world order?”. The answer I think is self-evident. The question shall therefore not be asked. Instead, soy-boys from Foreign Policy mag will tell us about how the Russians use exotic flowers to kill high visibility opponents whose death would serve no conceivable political goal.

Hypocrisy as a core attribute of the modern man

Willful ignorance is important, of course, but it is not enough. For one thing, being ignorant, while useful to dismiss a fact-based and/or logical argument, is not something useful to establish your moral superiority or the legality of your actions. Empire requires much more than just obedience from its subject: what is also absolutely indispensable is a very strong sense of superiority which can be relied upon when committing a hostile action against the other guy. And nothing is as solid a foundation for a sense of superiority than the unapologetic reliance on brazen hypocrisy. Let’s take a fresh example: the latest US threats to attack Syria (again).

Irrespective of the fact that the US themselves have certified Syria free of chemical weapons and irrespective of the fact that US officials are still saying that they have no evidence that the Syrian government was involved in any chemical attack on Khan Shaykhun, the US is now preparing to strike Syria again in “response” to future chemical attacks! Yes, you read that right. The AngloZionists are now announcing their false flags in advance! In fact, by the time this analysis is published the attack will probably already have occurred. The “best” part of this all is that Nikki Haley has now announced to the UN Security Council that the US will act without any UN Security Council approval. What the US is declaring is this: “we reserve the right to violate international law at any time and for any reason we deem sufficient”. In the very same statement, Nikki Haley also called the Syrian government an “outlaw regime”. This is not a joke, check it out for yourself. The reaction in “democratic” Europe: declaring that *Russia* (not the US) is a rogue state. QED.

This entire circus is only made possible by the fact that the western elites have all turned into “great supine protoplasmic invertebrate jellies” (to use the wonderful words of Boris Johnson) and that absolutely nobody has the courage, or decency, to call all this what it really is: an obscene display of total hypocrisy and wholesale violation of all norms of international law. The French philosopher Alain Soral is quite right when he says that modern “journalists are either unemployed or prostitutes” (he spoke about the French media - un journaliste français c’est soit une pute soit un chômeur – but this fully applies to all the western media). Except that I would extend it to the entire Western Establishment.

I would further argue that foreign aggression and hypocrisy have become the two essential pillars for the survival of the AngloZionist empire: the first one being an economic and political imperative, the 2nd one being the prerequisite for the public justification of the first one. But sometimes even that is not enough, especially when the lies are self-evidently absurd. Then the final, quasi-miraculous element is always brought in: hysterics.

Hysteria as the highest form of (pseudo-)liberalism

I don’t particularly care for the distinction usually made between liberals and conservatives, at least not unless the context and these terms is carefully and accurately defined. I certainly don’t place myself on that continuum nor do find it analytically helpful.

The theoretical meaning of these concepts is, however, quite different from what is mostly understood under these labels, especially when people use them to identify themselves. That is to say that while I am not at all sure that those who think of themselves as, say, liberals are in any way truly liberal, I do think that people who would identify themselves as “liberals” often (mostly?) share a number of characteristics, the foremost of which is a very strong propensity to function at, and engage in, an hysterical mode of discourse and action.

The Google definition of hysteria is “exaggerated or uncontrollable emotion or excitement, especially among a group of people (…) whose symptoms include conversion of psychological stress into physical symptoms (somatization), selective amnesia, shallow volatile emotions, and overdramatic or attention-seeking behavior”. Is that not a perfect description of US politicians, especially the (putatively) “liberal” ones? Just think of the way US Democrats have capitalized on such (non-)issues as “Russian interference” (externally) or “gun control” (internally) and you will see that the so-called “liberals” never get off a high-emotional pitch. The best example of all, really, is their reaction to the election of Donald Trump instead of their cult-leader Hillary: it has been over a year since Trump has been elected and yet the liberal ziomedia and its consumers are still in full-blown hysteria mode (with “pussyhats”, “sky-screams” and all). In a conversation you can literally drown such a liberal with facts, statistics, expert testimonies, etc. and achieve absolutely no result whatsoever because the liberal lives in an ideological comfort zone which he/she is categorically unwilling and, in fact, unable, to abandon, even temporarily. This is what makes liberals such a *perfect* audience for false-flag operations: they simply won’t process the narrative presented to them in a logical manner but will immediately react to it in a strongly emotional manner, usually with the urge to immediately “do something”.

That “do something” is usually expressed in the application of violence (externally) and the imposition of bans/restrictions/regulations (internally). You can try to explain to that liberal that the very last thing the Russians would ever want to do is to use a stupid method to try to kill a person who is of absolutely no interest to them, or to explain to that liberal that the very last thing the Syrian government would ever do in the course of its successful liberation of its national territory from “good terrorists” would be to use chemical weapons of any kind – but you would never achieve anything: Trump must be impeached, the Russians sanctioned and the Syrians bombed, end of argument.

I am quite aware that there are a lot of self-described “conservatives” who have fully joined this chorus of hysterical liberals in all their demands, but these “conservatives” are not only acting out of character, they are simply caving in to the social pressure of the day, being the “great supine protoplasmic invertebrate jellies” mentioned above. Again, I am not discussing real liberals or real conservatives here (regardless of what these terms really mean), I am talking about those who, for whatever reason, chose to place that label upon themselves even if they personally have only a very vague idea of what this label is supposed to mean.

Scripal case: assassination attempt without an assassin

"Something is rotten in the state of Denmark."
 (Hamlet (1.4), Marcellus to Horatio )

  Universal Declaration of Human Rights (Article 11) stipulates that "everyone has the right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty" - one of the core principles of modern society

SKRIPALMANIA by Patrick Armstrong

1. It’s obvious nonsense brought to you by proven liars.
2. The point of propaganda is to leave an impression after the details have been forgotten.
3. To get involved in discussing the minutiae of the story is to help the propagandists’ aims.
4. Therefore treat it as a badly constructed story that is failing to convince.
5. Do this by analyzing the comments on the news stories which (at least the ones I’ve looked at) show that people are skeptical.
6. Also mock the meanderings of the story: At the restaurant! In the car! On the doorstep! Incredibly lethal but strangely ineffective. Miraculous recovery of daughter. Baby wipes as effective protection. Reminiscent of White Helmets and their flip flops, rubber gloves and paper masks; but, come to think of it, it’s the same authors in both stories. Who, after so many lies, are becoming overconfident and sloppy.

It’s a startlingly incompetent theatrical production and should be responded to with contemptuous mockery.

Sic Semper Tyrannis, Mar 29, 2018

There are multiple signs that "something is rotten in  the Kingdom of Demark" in case of Skripal poisoning. Among the most obvious signs that this was yet another false flag operation are:

Notes:

As the UK goverment  have a history of desperate measures to cling to power, as well as history of experimenting on humans (they killed one parson by injecting him with sarin) this whole incident & investigation has a clear sign of false flag operating which would primary not secondary hypothesis

No more or less realistic timeline exists

As both Skripal and his daughter carry a cell phone (probably expensive, as Skripal drove BMW and Yulia came from Moscow and worked for foreign companies were an upscale smartphone is a viewed as a norm ;-) all movements of this couple probably could be traced with absolute accuracy via GPS data from the phones (and you bet that such data were collected for both by appropriate British agencies). So all their movements  should be completely known  and timeline should be available. This is not the case. Looks like nothing substantial was published or I was unable to find it.

Available timelines suggest that initial poisoning took around half an hour to incapacitate them if we assume that they were poisoned at the Zizzi restaurant, which is not typical for a nerve gas. Also nobody else in the restaurant was affected so the only way such a fit can be dome is via food or drink which is strange method of application of poisoness gas which is designed to be dispersed and act via air or skin contact.

But MSM do not ask such questions. They just propagate official talking points. Which also change with time.

Typical time from poisoning to death for VX type gas is a minute or two. Here we are talking about hours (in case the poisoness liquid or grease was applied to the door knob --  the most recent version of the story -- full three hours 12:55 -- 16:00 or later). That does not look plausible, even if we accept that some idiot decided to bring such a dangerous substance into what is a national security state with immense number of cameras and use it against the person who lost any significance other that a scapegoat for some provocation.

Mark Hirst‏ @Documark · Mar 29

"#Skripal was poisoned in his car... No it was from a handbag.... No it was his front door...."
Who's running this "investigation"? The Keystone Cops?
Where is the nationwide manhunt for the real perpetrators?
Where is the obligatory CCTV in the most surveilled state on earth?

Here is timeline extended from the initial short  BBC timeline ( http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-43315636   )

If we assume that they were poisoned at Zizzi with fentanyl or something similar they survived for more then an hour, which is not atypical in cases of narcotics overdose. Moreover Skripal lost emotional control at the restaurant which can be  because he has "fixed time" appointment  and it was in jeopardy (that suggests staged poisoning) or because he was a narcoaddict (he suffered from chronic pain) who wants to take his fix and can't. That does not explain why the daughter was also affected, though.

Here is also another timeline from

http://www.moonofalabama.org/2018/03/no-patients-have-experienced-symptoms-of-nerve-agent-poisoning-in-salisbury.html#c6a00d8341c640e53ef01b8d2e3cc6c970c

@25 peter.. I found this sequence of events timing from somewhere else - can't remember.. it seems they visiting the pub before the restaurant...

Skripal nerve-gas assassination definitely has multiple common elements with the “Litvinenko polonium murder” and the “Yushchenko dioxin poisoning“. The fact that neither nerve-gas, nor polonium nor dioxin are in any way effective murder weapons does not matter in the least: a simple drive-by shooting, street-stabbing or, better, any “accident” is both easier to arrange and impossible to trace.

Fancy assassination methods are used when access to the target is very hard or impossible (as was the case with Ibn al-Khattab, whose assassination the Russians were more than happy to take credit for; this might also have been the case with the death of Yasser Arafat). But the best way of murdering somebody is to simply make the body disappear, making any subsequent investigation almost impossible.

Finally, you can always subcontract the assassination to somebody else like, for example, when the CIA tried and failed, to murder Grand Ayatollah Mohammad Hussain Fadlallah by subcontracting his bombing to its local “Christian” allies, killing over 80 innocent people in the process.

Skripal case: assassination attempt without an assassin

"Something is rotten in the state of Denmark."
 (Hamlet (1.4), Marcellus to Horatio )

In this case like in case on MH17 and Litvinenko poisoning Western MSM try to deceive public. No question about it. We do not know much about this assassination (if there was an assassination, which also is not given; can be completely staged event), but those tiny bits of information that we have suggest the MSM are deceiving us and treat us as idiots, who are incapable of independent thinking. 

UK financed/affiliated "White Helmets" have been routinely and regularly producing  'chemical weapons false flags' for years in Syria.

Theresa May accusations implies that the British authorities have both a control sample (to determine if the quantities found would be lethal) and samples from a few different labs to confirm that the fingerprint was from lab A not lab B for example. How did they got those ? But the whole hypotheses that a nerve gas was used is very weak even within the framework that is known from published information.  There are several questions that need to answered:

Of course we will never know preside answers on most of those question, but the list itself suggests that "Something is rotten in the state of Denmark." (Hamlet (1.4), Marcellus to Horatio )

From a very scant information available the most plausible hypothesis is that it was a false flag operation which probably proceeded in two steps (with the first step not necessary accomplished by those who run the second step; it can be two different groups).

  1. Skripal visited police some time before the incident and stated that he fears for his life.  that can be an initial step for the propagation  for a stage incident or a real concerns.
     
  2. While being in the restaurant Skripal he lost emotional control.  may be he has to be at the bench at specific time and this schedule was in jeopardy.  Or he  sense some danger and wanted to leave the place (in this case why wait for the food). Or he  needed a fetanyl or some other narcotic fix (in this  case why daughter was affected too)
     
  3. A pretty plausible explanation of the  know facts for the case is that there were two different  poisons. First some poison like Fentanyl was mixed into food or drinks or taken by Skripals themselves either as masked as some other medication, or as a part of narcoaddict fix. This explains why nobody in the restaurant was affected (any military nerve gas would kill everybody in the room, so this hypothesis that the gar was "administered" in the restaurant is not very plausible; if it would be administered before that, for example in the car as the US MSM push, Skripal would never get to the restaurant and probably level get out of the car iether). That's  why the doctor who treated Skripal daughter for 30 min was not poisoned. So Skripal daughter hands and body was clean of both Fentanyl (which is highly toxic) and any nerve gas absorbed in the closing (which is deadly).  Fentanyl  is known for previous use in assassinations (for example by Israel). It killed more than 21K people in the USA in 2016

    Yulia recently lost a lot of weight which can suggest that she is on drags too. The initial reports put this hypothesis

    The two were urgently taken to hospital and in critical condition. They are supposed to have had contact with an unknown poisonous substance. According to unconfirmed information it is fentanyl. Two police officers were also hospitalized after they went to the scene of the incident.

    First responders can be affected by fentanyl too: Norwalk Reflector Norwalk officer rushed to ER after fentanyl poisoning

    A Norwalk police officers recently was rushed to the emergency room after experiencing what is believed to have been narcotic poisoning following an arrest at Wal-Mart.

    One of the scariest situation for first-responders is the possibility of drug poisoning from lethal substances such as fentanyl or carfentanil.

    Both drugs can be absorbed through the skin on contact, making them dangerous for medical and law enforcement responders to care for the increasing number of overdose patients. For non-drug users, coming into contact with even the smallest amount of either could be deadly since fentanyl is about 50 times stronger than heroin and carfentanil is considered to be 10,000 times more potent than morphine

    The incident resulted in a man’s arrest, but not before he gave officers a difficult time.

    “We arrested a guy out at Wal-Mart and (the officer) had to wrestle him around for a few minutes to get the cuffs on him,” Light said.

    Shortly after the incident, Light said, the officer said he “felt strange.” His heart rate elevated and his lips went numb. The officer was rushed to the Fisher-Titus Medical Center emergency room.

    “We’re pretty sure it was fentanyl poisoning that caused it,” Light said. “We think the possible fentanyl was on either his hands or his wrists.”
     

  4. On the second stage, which occurred when Skripals were already hospitalized a nerve agent was planted in several places, including home, somebody decided that this can be  tuned into a major attack of Russia and the false flag operation started. That's probably why the police investigator who visited Skripal home became the first victim of poisons gas.  This false flag poison plats could be performed by personnel in full protection gear, who arrived to those places.
     
  5. NHS Doctor: "No Patients Have Experienced Symptoms Of Nerve Agent Poisoning In Salisbury"
     
  6. Reaction of British authorities was pretty interesting. Especially speed. Scripals were  found unconscious March 4 around 4PM on the bench near the restaurant.  But already on March 5 Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson says Britain will "respond appropriately and robustly" if evidence emerges of Russia's involvement in Skripal's suspected poisoning. Of course Boris Johnson is a comic figure as the top diplomat and does not belong even to the second league in this area, but he is a long time politician and as such is not completely stupid. So there was probably a call from Washington, DC that forced this premature reaction.  Mar 21 - Russian Scientists Explain 'Novichok' - High Time For Britain To Come Clean (Updated)

    The British government is milking the incident to push Russophobia and to divert from its failure in the Brexit negotiations and all its other problems. But the diversion will only succeed so long. The NHS doctor as well as court testimony by scientists from Proton Down contradict the claims made by the British government. Let's hope that the British opposition picks up on that.

Poisoning of "opponent of the regime" provides ideal conditions for a false flag operation as the cloud of secrecy can be used to subvert the investigation and pursue the agenda with the complete impunity. The government can essentially decree the "truth" in such cases. It also provides tremendous propaganda effect.

And British are not shy from experimenting on humans with poison gases either. It took 50 years for Porton Down chemical research centre to come clean on poisoning a British soldier with Sarin telling him it was a flu test. Poor fella. https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1476722/Porton-Down-unlawful-killing-verdict-opens-gates-to-claims.html

Only this sequence of events can explain what the doctor who treated the daughter for 30 min and first responders suffered no consequences.

Poisoning of the "opponent of the regime" is a known British tactics first demonstrated in full glory in Litvinenko case ("Arafat and Litvinenko: an Interesting Turn to a Mysterious Story", http://wipokuli.wordpress.com/2013/11/13/arafat-and-litvinenko-an-interesting-turn-to-a-mysterious-story /.)

The first step can also be plot by some group connected with William Browder of Magnitsky death fame (http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-25190975), Berezovsky associates or some other "Russian mafia in London" groups. The fact that Skripal has such an expensive car suggests that he was participating in some business dealings, probably as a part of some London-based exiles group. UK government is not know for extreme generosity toward such people as Skripal.

The question arise why the UK government went this path. It well might be the USA pressure (like in case of Iraq invasion) or internal considerations that such step will be beneficial to the May government survival. Or both.

My impression is that his is just a first (and somewhat clumsy executed) step in multi step gambit in which Scripals were just sacrificial lamps. Pawns is a bigger game.

The next steps might be related to Would Cup and/or confiscation of assets of Russian oligarchs in London to put pressure on Putin and possibly initiate with their hands a "regime change" in Russia.

Was everything staged with Skripals as hired actors?

Both Skripals badly needed money.  Older Skripal might be involved in some criminal or semi-criminal activity with other Russian emigrants as it often happens in London with those who expected to live a plush  life in GB and then found that founds they can get can't provide this standard of living.

without evidence to the contrary we must assume mi5 were responsible, or skripal somehow got hold of a poison and mishandled it.

there are also comments that the whole thing look like state provocation from the beginning to the end and there were not any gas or poisoning at all.

mike k , Mar 21, 2018 9:45:34 PM | 88

I cannot understand why so many commenters assume that a toxic agent had anything to do with this obvious false flag charade. I wonder if Skripal or his daughter were actually sick at all, or merely doing a crisis acting job.

Curious that they have been spirited away from anyone who might assess their condition. And the notoriously deadly nerve agent apparently did not do it's job on them. Because there was no nerve agent involved. Now after a long lapse of time some concocted nerve agent may be produced to back up the whole scam.

Meanwhile Skripal and daughter will be held away from prying eyes in "protective custody".

CUE BONO question is the key question in Skripal matter

Why such a strange and dangerous method of killing was chosen and why anybody wants to eliminate old, used man who does not have any valuable information or contacts

There is plenty of common crime in the UK and to get somebody to rob and stab Skripal would have probably been the easiest version. That’s assuming that the Russians had any reason to want him dead, which they self-evidently didn’t.

Mar 15, 2018 | www.unz.com

likbez, March 16, 2018 at 3:48 am GMT

@Kiza

Kiza,

Why of course the people don't want war. Why should some poor slob on a farm want to risk his life in a war when the best he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece? Naturally the common people don't want war: neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But after all it is the leaders of a country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy or fascist dictatorship, or a parliament or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked (by a Russian sounding chemical weapon Novichok), and denounce the peace makers for lack of patriotism (https://www.craigmurray.org.uk - Craig Murray has been most viciously attacked for not accepting the official story without any evidence) and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country.

Hermann Göring

That's a perfectly applicable variation of the famous quote.

The most plausible goal of the whole "Operation Skripal" was poisoning UK-Russia relations and hopefully bringing the US and EU to impose new round of sanctions on Russia. In this sense it reminds Litvinenko case (which brought huge propaganda benefits to the UK and the hysteria lasted several months, if memory does not fail me).

BTW exiled Russian oligarchs like Khodorkovski ( https://www.voltairenet.org/article168007.html ) also could easily stage such a false flag operation using their interconnections with both Russia and Israel.

One thing I can't understand in "Operation Skripal" is how such an assassination (if we assume that this is an assassination) was accomplished.

The gas (if it really exists, which is yet another question) supposedly is really deadly. If this was not gas but some substance infused with this agent (which would be extremely strange and risky method), you need to get it into the drinks, which means 100% chances of your detection.

Moreover in case of the gas the difficulties look insurmountable -- to get it to the victim you need to mix components and shortly after spray it from a short distance, hoping the you mixed them correctly. The place where Skripals were found unconscious is a really bad place for such an exercise as there probably several cameras which record the events on the bench.

Unless it was the daughter who did this (in this case authorities have definitely all the necessary evidence of the crime committed) chances of an attacker to survive such an attack are slim, and changes not being recorded on one or more camera are virtually non existent.

If there was a human assassin, he/she risks to be immediately dead or severely injured as even in minimal concentrations such a gas reliably kills a person within two minutes or so. Antidote might help to survive, but how effective it is depends on the dose you can get.

If some robotic disperser was used, then it will be found as unlike in case of an explosive device the activation does no destroy it.

Also unclear why target the daughter, unless we are dealing with some botched amateur false flag operation in best traditions of ISIS Syria false flag operations.

Moreover, Skripals spent around an hour on a bench in a comatose state and were helped by a doctor who was not affected in any way. See timeline at

http://www.businessinsider.com/who-is-sergei-skripal-timeline-2018-3#march-3-240-pm-skripals-33-year-old-daughter-yulia-arrives-in-the-uk-via-london-heathrow-airport-relatives-said-she-was-visiting-from-moscow-17

But later a policeman was affected. Very strange.

So IMHO it looks like assassination without an assassin. There are some absurd statements that the poison was spiked in their drinks either in the pub or at the restaurant:

https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/5742909/sergei-skripal-spy-russian-assassin-poison-hit-pub/

One possible scenario is that Skripal and his daughter were narcoaddicts and did it to themselves The initial reports (see, for example, https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/5733372/ex-russian-spy-sergei-skripal-poisoned-salisbury-feared-life-cops/ ) suggested traces of the opiate fentanyl -- a synthetic toxin many times stronger than heroin -- had been detected at the scene.

Later their collapse was used to stage a false flag operation, when in fact there was no any gas involved, and at this point, a grandiose propaganda show with the decontamination of the area started.

30 questions which will never the answered by neoliberal MSM

30 Questions That Journalists Should be Asking About the Skripal Case

Mar 27, 2018 | www.theblogmire.com

There are a lot of issues around the case of Sergei and Yulia Skripal which, at the time of writing, are very unclear and rather odd. There may well be good and innocent explanations for some or even all of them. Then again there may not. This is why it is crucial for questions to be asked where, as yet, there are either no answers or deeply unsatisfactory ones.

Some people will assume that this is conspiracy theory territory. It is not that, for the simple reason that I have no credible theory -- conspiracy or otherwise -- to explain all the details of the incident in Salisbury from start to finish, and I am not attempting to forward one. I have no idea who was behind this incident, and I continue to keep an open mind to a good many possible explanations.

However, there are a number of oddities in the official narrative, which do demand answers and clarifications. You don't have to be a conspiracy theorist or a defender of the Russian state to see this. You just need a healthy skepticism, "of a type developed by all inquiring minds!"

Below are 30 of the most important questions regarding the case and the British Government's response, which are currently either wholly unanswered, or which require clarification.


1. Why have there been no updates on the condition of Sergei and Yulia Skripal in the public domain since the first week of the investigation?

2. Are they still alive?

3. If so, what is their current condition and what symptoms are they displaying?

4. In a recent letter to The Times , Stephen Davies, Consultant in Emergency Medicine at Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust, wrote the following:

"Sir, Further to your report ("Poison exposure leaves almost 40 needing treatment", Mar 14) may I clarify that no patients have experienced nerve agent poisoning in Salisbury and there have only ever been three patients with significant poisoning."

His claim that " no patients have experienced nerve agent poisoning in Salisbury" is remarkably odd, as it appears to flatly contradict the official narrative. Was this a slip of the pen, or was it his intention to communicate precisely this -- that no patients have been poisoned by a nerve agent in Salisbury?

5. It has been said that the Skripals and Detective Sergeant Nick Bailey were poisoned by "a military grade nerve agent". According to some claims, the type referred to could be anywhere between five and eight times more toxic than VX nerve agent. Given that just 10mg of VX is reckoned to be the median lethal dose , it seems likely that the particular type mentioned in the Skripal case should have killed them instantly. Is there an explanation as to how or why this did not happen?

6. Although reports suggested the involvement of some sort of nerve agent fairly soon after the incident, it was almost a week before Public Health England issued advice to those who had visited The Mill pub or the Zizzi restaurant in Salisbury on the day that the Skripals fell ill. Why the delay and did this pose a danger to the public?

7. In their advice, Public Health England stated that people who had visited those places, where traces of a military grade nerve agent had apparently been found, should wash their clothes and:

"Wipe personal items such as phones, handbags and other electronic items with cleansing or baby wipes and dispose of the wipes in the bin (ordinary domestic waste disposal)."

Are baby wipes acknowledged to be an effective and safe method of dealing with objects that may potentially have been contaminated with "military grade nerve agent", especially of a type 5-8 times more deadly than VX?

8. Initial reports suggested that Detective Sergeant Bailey became ill after coming into contact with the substance after attending the Skripals on the bench they were seated on in The Maltings in Salisbury. Subsequent claims, however, first aired by former Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Lord Ian Blair on 9 th March , said that he came into contact with the substance at Sergei Skripal's house in Christie Miller Road. Reports since then have been highly ambiguous about what should be an easily verifiable fact. Which is the correct account?

9. The government have claimed that the poison used was "a military grade nerve agent of a type developed by Russia ". The phrase "of a type developed by Russia" says nothing whatsoever about whether the substance used in the Salisbury case was produced or manufactured in Russia. Can the government confirm that its scientists at Porton Down have established that the substance that poisoned the Skripals and DS Bailey was actually produced or manufactured in Russia?

10. The former ambassador to Uzbekistan, Craig Murray, has claimed that sources within the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) have told him that scientists at Porton Down would not agree to a statement about the place of origin of the substance , because they were not able to establish this. According to Mr. Murray, only under much pressure from the Government did they end up agreeing to the compromise wording, "of a type developed by Russia", which has subsequently been used in all official statements on the matter. Can the FCO, in plain and unambiguous English, categorically refute Mr. Murray's claims that pressure was put on Porton Down scientists to agree to a form of words and that in the end a much-diluted version was agreed?

11. On the occasion that the FCO did attempt to refute Mr. Murray's claims , the wording they used included a straightforward repetition of the same phrase – "of a type developed by Russia". Is the FCO willing and able to go beyond this and confirm that the substance was not only "of a type developed by Russia", but that it was "produced" or "manufactured" in Russia?

12. Why did the British Government issue a 36-hour ultimatum to the Russian Government to come up with an explanation, but then refuse their request to share the evidence that allegedly pointed to their culpability (there could have been no danger of their tampering with it, since Porton Down would have retained their own sample)?

13. How is it possible for a state (or indeed any person or entity) that has been accused of something, to defend themselves against an accusation if they are refused access to evidence that apparently points to their guilt?

14. Is this not a clear case of the reversal of the presumption of innocence and of due process?

15. Furthermore, why did the British Government issue an ultimatum to the Russian Government, in contravention of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) rules governing such matters, to which both Britain and Russia are signatories, and which are clearly set out in Article 9, Paragraph ii of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC)?

16. Given that the investigation, which has been described by the man leading it as being "an extremely challenging investigation" and as having "a number of unique and complex issues", and given that many of the facts of the case are not yet known, such as when, where and how the substance was administered, how is it possible for the British Government to point the finger of blame with such certainty?

17. Furthermore, by doing so, haven't they both politicized and prejudiced the investigation?

18. Why did the British Government feel the need to come forward with an accusation little more than a week into the investigation, rather than waiting for its completion?

19. On the Andrew Marr Show on 18 th March, the Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson, stated the following:

"And I might just say in response to Mr. Chizhov's point about Russian stockpiles of chemical weapons. We actually had evidence within the last ten years that Russia has not only been investigating the delivery of nerve agents for the purposes of assassination, but it has also been creating and stockpiling Novichok."

Where has this intelligence come from and has it been properly verified?

20. If this intelligence was known before 27 th September 2017 – the date that the OPCW issued a statement declaring the completion of the destruction of all 39,967 metric tons of chemical weapons possessed by the Russian Federation – why did Britain not inform the OPCW of its own intelligence which apparently contradicts this claim, which they would have had a legal obligation to do?

21. If this intelligence was known after 27 th September 2017, why did Britain not inform the OPCW of this "new" information, which it was legally obliged to do, since it allegedly shows that Russia had been lying to the OPCW and had been carrying out a clandestine chemical weapons programme?

22. Also on the Andrew Marr show, Mr. Johnson made the following claim after a question of whether he was "absolutely sure" that the substance used to poison the Skripals was a "Novichok":

"Obviously to the best of our knowledge this is a Russian-made nerve agent that falls within the category Novichok made only by Russia, and just to get back to the point about the international reaction which is so fascinating."

Is the phrase "to the best of our knowledge" an adequate response to Mr. Marr's request of him being "absolutely sure"?

23. Is this a good enough legal basis from which to accuse another state and to impose punitive measures on it, or is more certainty needed before such an accusation can be made?

24. After hedging his words with the phrase, "to the best of our knowledge", Mr. Johnson then went beyond previous Government claims that the substance was "of a type developed in Russia", saying that it was "Russian-made". Have the scientists at Porton Down been able to establish that it was indeed "Russian-made", or was this a case of Mr. Johnson straying off-message?

25. He also went beyond the previous claim that the substance was "of a type developed in Russia" by saying that the substance involved in the Skripal case "falls within the category Novichok made only by Russia "? Firstly, is Mr. Johnson able to provide evidence that this category of chemical weapons was ever successfully synthesized in Russia, especially in the light of the OPCW's Scientific Advisory Board stating as recently as 2013, that it has "insufficient information to comment on the existence or properties of 'Novichoks ' "?

26. As Craig Murray has again pointed out , since its 2013 statement, the OPCW has worked (legally) with Iranian scientists who have successfully synthesized these chemical weapons. Was Mr. Johnson aware that the category of "Novichok" chemical weapons had been synthesized elsewhere when he stated that this category of chemical weapons is "made only by Russia"?

27. Does the fact that Iranian scientists were able to synthesize this class of chemical weapons suggest that other states have the capabilities to do likewise?

28. Is the British Government aware that the main plant involved in attempts to synthesize Novichoks in the 1970s and 1980s was based not in Russia, but in Nukus in Uzbekistan?

29. Does the fact that the US Department of Defense decontaminated and dismantled the Nukus site, under an agreement with the Government of Uzbekistan , make it at least theoretically possible that substances or secrets held within that plant could have been carried out of the country and even back to the United States?

30. The connection between Sergei Skripal's MI6 recruiter, Pablo Miller , who also happens to live in Salisbury, and Christopher Steele, the author of the so-called "Trump Dossier", has been well established , as has the fact that Mr. Skripal and Mr. Miller regularly met together in the City . Is this connection of any interest to the investigation into the incident in Salisbury?


If there are any journalists with integrity and inquisitive minds still living in this country, I would be grateful if they could begin doing their job and research the answers to these sorts of questions by asking the appropriate people and authorities.

Litvinenko case

Brits have decided to raise Litvinenko’s ghost just to keep the pot boiling about the Evil One so that the whole world will rally behind the exceptional nation’s sterling effort to have him vanquished.

See also Litvinenko poisoning

PaulR says: January 23, 2015 at 1:21 pm

Latest Litvinenko revelation: Putin’s contacts with Al Qaeda: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/law-and-order/11364724/Is-this-Alexander-Litvinenkos-beyond-the-grave-attack-on-Putin.html

 Moscow Exile says: January 23, 2015 at 1:56 pm

Yeah, Ol’ Sasha could tell a tale or two…if you paid him.

Or three or four, for that matter.

I reckon he’d have given a 5% discount on a job lot., especially when he became strapped for cash after his benefactor gave him the heave-ho in London.

Here’s Alexander MacLitvinenko in one of his fantasy modes:

Britain Cans Case Against Russia

Well not quite. They seem to have decided to raise Litvinenko’s ghost just to keep the pot boiling about the Evil One so that the whole world will rally behind the exceptional nation’s sterling effort to have him vanquished.

 Moscow Exile says: January 23, 2015 at 2:08 pm

Alexander Litvinenko: Blackmailer, Smuggler, Gangster Extraordinaire


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[Apr 21, 2018] The White Helmets claim to support all Syrian people although when Jaish al-Islam surrendered to the SAG and were exiled to northern Aleppo (or where ever), all the White Helmets fled with Jaish al-Islam.

Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Ghost Ship | Apr 21, 2018 5:59:05 AM | 70

Further points about the White Helmets and East Ghouta.

The White Helmets claim to support all Syrian people although when Jaish al-Islam surrendered to the SAG and were exiled to northern Aleppo (or where ever), all the White Helmets fled with Jaish al-Islam. I've always thought that volunteer first responders were honor-bound to stay with the people they support so the White Helmets are really there to support terrorists like Jaish al-Islam. As that fat f**k, victor of East Aleppo and high-ranking terrorist official, Sheikh Abdullah al-Muhaysini, said "the White Helmets are the civil defence of the mujahadeen" and only the the mujahadeen.

There have been stories in the western media claiming that the doctors in Douma who had the balls to stay behind with their patients (unlike the ball-less White Helmets) and were denying the attack involved chemical weapons were intimidated by the regime - not something the reporters actually in Douma seemed to detect, which suggest that people on the ground in terrorist-controlled areas felt some degree of safety with the Syrian government, enough at least to risk their lives.

Looking back at Aleppo only about 65% of the local population stayed behind to go under government control, while in East Ghouta it seems that 80% of the local population stayed behind to go under government control even those who fled a while back to government-controlled areas. It looks like the Syrian government really has turned the corner with its real "heart and minds" approach.

[Apr 21, 2018] White Helmets in Douma play the same role as Ahmed Chalabi and the Iraqi National Congress played in Iraq WDM fiasco

It looks more and more that everything was staged and everything was controlled by Western intelligence agencies with the specific goal.
Notable quotes:
"... That kind of reminds me of when Ahmed Chalabi and the Iraqi National Congress were explaining how to get rid of Saddam without plunging Iraq into mayhem and destabilising the wider region. ..."
"... If the price of selling arms to Saudi Arabia is having to stage nerve agent attacks in the UK and in Syria, one has to ask: Is it really worth it? ..."
Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

Paul Crow , 13 Apr 2018 15:43

Read Robert Fisk in the Independent. He, as always, has nailed it. The Brits and the US have no authority to take action with their past record of use of Chemical and Atomic weapons.
Celtiberico , 13 Apr 2018 15:42

The Syrian Negotiation Commission has called for action to deter Assad from killing civilians. What they envisage is that each time Assad launches a deadly attack on noncombatants, allied forces reply by taking out one of the strategic assets he uses to kill civilians. It could be an airfield, it could be a command centre. If the target were aircraft, that would simultaneously inflict a cost on the regime and deprive it of the means of dropping its barrel bombs and toxic, yellow cylinders. The objective would be to make Assad pay a price for killing his own people, a price he has not paid until now. Eventually, or so runs the hope, he would be deterred.

That kind of reminds me of when Ahmed Chalabi and the Iraqi National Congress were explaining how to get rid of Saddam without plunging Iraq into mayhem and destabilising the wider region.

Krautolivier , 13 Apr 2018 15:40
If the price of selling arms to Saudi Arabia is having to stage nerve agent attacks in the UK and in Syria, one has to ask: Is it really worth it?
oldeborr , 13 Apr 2018 15:38
The UK andcFrance bares a heavy responsibility for the current situation in Syria. The cavalier attitude that the ConDems took to international law during the Arab spring encouraged the Saudi s and their proxies to distablise the recognised Govt. Assad is no paragon of virtue, but prior to the insurgency steps were in place to make the country a better place for its citizens, and whilst its true poltical dissent was not allowed, people could live their lives and go about their business in safety.

[Apr 21, 2018] In an interview with The Guardian newspaper, Blix said, "I have my detractors in Washington. There are bastards who spread things around, of course, who planted nasty things in the media."

Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

harveybrown , 13 Apr 2018 15:37

In an interview on BBC 1 on 8 February 2004, UN Weapons Inspector, Hans Blix accused the US and British governments of dramatizing the threat of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, in order to strengthen the case for the 2003 war against the government of Saddam Hussein.
Ultimately, no stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction were ever found.

In an interview with The Guardian newspaper, Blix said, "I have my detractors in Washington. There are bastards who spread things around, of course, who planted nasty things in the media."

[ It is interesting to note that Allan Ramsay likewise deplored "a friendly alliance between the camp and the counting-house" for exactly the same reasons (Letters on the Present Disturbances, p.34). Ramsay maintained that of the evil consequences of such alliance "the two last wars carried on by England against France and Spain, furnish a most melancholy illustration. To obtain the sole and exclusive commerce of the western world, in which the French and Spaniards were their rivals, was the modest wish of our merchants, in conjunction with our Americans. The fair, and truly commercial, method of effecting this would have been, by superior skill, industry and frugality, to have undersold their rivals at market: but that method appearing slow and troublesome to a luxurious people, whose extraordinary expences* required extraordinary profits, a more expeditous one was devised; which was that of driving their rivals entirely out of the seas, and preventing them from bringing their goods at all to market. For this purpose, not having any fleets or armies of their own, the powers of the State were found necessary, and they applied them accordingly" (ibid., pp.32 f.).

Knorr, K. E. 'Ch02-Part2 British Colonial Theories 1570-1850'. In British Colonial Theories, 1570-1850. The University of Toronto Press, 1944. ]

[Apr 21, 2018] Douma, US imperialism, and While Helmets

Sacrificing women and children to achieve nefarious goals such as preparing the ground for invasion dictated by economic or geopolitical interests is a typical Western intelligence agencies plot.
Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com
OlivesNightie , 13 Apr 2018 15:46

The notion of inaction, of standing by and watching as Assad kills and kills and kills, racking up a death toll in Syria of 500,000

On May 12, 1996, Madeleine Albright defended UN sanctions against Iraq on a 60 Minutes segment in which Lesley Stahl asked her "We have heard that half a million children have died. I mean, that's more children than died in Hiroshima. And, you know, is the price worth it?" and Albright replied, "We think the price is worth it."'

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FbIX1CP9qr4

[Apr 21, 2018] The UN report on previous attacks confirmed that Assad's allegation that a video had been staged have solid ground. It concludes that the patients on the video "appear relatively unaffected by the typical symptoms.

Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

StephenDaedalus -> JackDowland , 13 Apr 2018 15:47

Sure, here's the UN OPCW investigation report which directly blames the Assad forces for chemical attacks. Take as much time as you need.

https://undocs.org/S/2016/738

I couldn't find the paragraph which directly blames Assad's forces.

I note it does refer (at para 44) to Assad's allegation that a video had been staged. It concludes that the patients on the video "appear relatively unaffected by the typical symptoms.

No red eyes, tearing, paleness, sweating, cyanosis or breathing difficulties can be observed from the footage. The patients interviewed in the video show little or no signs of having been exposed to a toxic chemical".

This is also consistent with other documented attempts of video-making to trigger the western bombs.

Surely you can see why people might at least reserve judgment about the latest video emanating from Jaish al-Islam controlled territory?

[Apr 21, 2018] White Helmets tend to be hard line Islamists and send out propaganda videos

Notable quotes:
"... "Charities"? Lol. I'll bet money nearly all of those 'charities' are actually PR fronts for thuggish Islamist rebels. ..."
Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

LiviaDrusilla -> Bopstar, 13 Apr 2018 16:17

"Charities"? Lol. I'll bet money nearly all of those 'charities' are actually PR fronts for thuggish Islamist rebels.

A bit like how all the Syrians the Guardian manages to reach for 'skype interviews' are positively desperate for massive aeriel bombardment of their own country, chastising the west for not supplying the bearded types with anti-aircraft missiles and even suggesting targets for American bombs.

brambalus -> 1liesalot , 13 Apr 2018 16:16
I have recently taught two Syrian professionals. Of course Assad is evil, but they tell me that some of the rebel militias are much more brutal and intolerant than Assad and if they win Syria will go the way of Libya.

They also told me (which shocked me somewhat) that the White Helmets tend to be hard line Islamists and send out propaganda videos which Western media fail to question thoroughly.

[Apr 21, 2018] When the dust has settled in Syria and people get round to writing their memoirs the White Helmets will be revealed to be nothing more to the British government than a sophisticated black propaganda op

Notable quotes:
"... The "Mannequin challenge" is regarded by many here as demonstrating that the White Helmets are a black op. but I suspect it was a sophisticated effort to discredit the reporting by Vanessa Beeley of the connections between the White Helmets and Al Qaeda/Al Nusra/HTS that seems to have worked. ..."
Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Ghost Ship | Apr 19, 2018 5:39:32 AM | 25

When the dust has settled in Syria and people get round to writing their memoirs the White Helmets will be revealed to be nothing more to the British government than a sophisticated black propaganda op.

Their name Syrian Civil Defence means that Syria's real civil defence is invisbile and suggests that the White Helmets are part of an alternative Syrian government.

Their nickname, White Helmets, how can anyone believe they're a black propaganda op?

Their MO, helping people and videoing it even though they seem to only help certain people and disappear when the video cameras stop running.
That they're involved in certain very dubious acts with the terrorists just suggests how evil the Syrian government must be to "force" their opponents to behave in this way and allow their supporters in the West to overlook their murderous brutal nature.

The "Mannequin challenge" is regarded by many here as demonstrating that the White Helmets are a black op. but I suspect it was a sophisticated effort to discredit the reporting by Vanessa Beeley of the connections between the White Helmets and Al Qaeda/Al Nusra/HTS that seems to have worked.


Emily , Apr 19, 2018 6:20:32 AM | 28

24 Ghost Ship
Some back up for you.
The founder James le Mesurier
British Intel
https://www.mintpressnews.com/james-le-mesurier-british-ex-military-mercenary-founded-white-helmets/230320/
http://21stcenturywire.com/2015/10/23/syrias-white-helmets-war-by-way-of-deception-part-1/
https://wikispooks.com/wiki/White_Helmets
uncle tungsten , Apr 19, 2018 6:44:58 AM | 30
@Ghost Ship 24. Total BS logic and totally slanted commentary. I would expect this level of 'analysis' in Guardian commentary but they don't allow commentary.

The White Helmets are terrorist killers who sometimes put on white helmets and do propaganda that only ever supports their terrorist faction. They are guilty of direct and complicit in crimes against humanity and they are fully funded by the UK and USA.

The barbarity of the white helmets is in no way a barometer of how bad Assad is. It is a barometer of the disgraceful terrorism unleashed by western nations against Syrian people and its government. The white helmets are a measure of the depraved warmongering of the west, saudi and israeli governments.

someone , Apr 19, 2018 10:50:07 AM | 49
@ Virgile #42
Where have the White Helmets from Douma gone??

Future will tell, but Russian journalists found one of their victims at Douma:

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bht2xhwHTKt/

S , Apr 19, 2018 11:05:07 AM | 53
I second b's recommendation to watch the Ikhbariya TV short documentary on the alleged attack (16 min). Here are 13 doctors and nurses who actually worked at the Douma hospitals at the time of the alleged attack stating plainly that nothing of the sort happened: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vSrRV-zdNic
Babyl-on , Apr 19, 2018 11:28:36 AM | 58
I think it is clear the "Chemical attack" did not happen. If you are the Empire you surly have your operatives securely, and secretly stationed within any "independent" OPCW body, especially if you intend to use "chemical attack" as your justification to slaughter innocent people for the interests of the AngloZionist/Wahhabi Empire.

Martin Scorsese could not have done a better job. From the grad seines of men in haz-mat suits around Surrey to the suffocating children in Duma it could hardly be better orchestrated.

The Empire only needs 30-35% agreement in the public to be successful and so far they have at least that.

Noirette , Apr 19, 2018 1:19:05 PM | 76
Who is stalling the investigation.. ..? A much more complex affair than the present hype and simultaneous denial (different factions) of the Douma 'chem attacks.'

White Helmets are not just masquerades of 'charities' who support the Agressors (US-uk-isr etc.), yes the WH make these clumsy in ya-face false 'savior' vids and so on as propaganda in Syria. But they fulfill other functions, the 'theatrical' actions on the ground and the vids don't justify the expense, which is considerable. Happily I can finally quote ppl more courageous than myself:

Syria: The Darker Side of the NGO Complex. Preying on Children of Conflict.

Feb 2017, 21st Cent Wire, with V. Beeley. (vid 38 mins.)

http://21stcenturywire.com/2017/02/24/syria-the-darker-side-of-the-ngo-complex-preying-on-children-of-conflict/

Anonymous , Apr 19, 2018 4:07:44 PM | 100
The "White Helmets" were supported by murdered British MP Jo Cox . Although apparently a loyal soldier to the war party, Jo became a nuisance to her leftist intellectual husband and to the war party, so an assassin was called in and a patsy was arranged.
Lochearn , Apr 19, 2018 4:51:05 PM | 107
A few days ago (April 14, @314) Bakerpete kindly linked to an article on blogmire.com which discusses the famous Karl Rove quote about how they, the actors, create reality and while we study that reality they have already moved on. A quote from Rob Slane (thank you) from the article:

"Yet while I'm doing so, the narrative is moving on. I'm falling into exactly the trap that Karl and his disciples have laid. They want two sorts of people: those who just blindly accept that it was the Russians wot did it, or that it was Assad wot did it; and those who spend their time asking questions about the official explanations. The first group call the second group conspiracy theorists and nutters. The second group call the first group dumb sheeple. And the Globalist Deep State laughs and laughs and laughs as the two groups battle it out to make sense of what has happened, leaving it free to march on to create the next reality. Truly I tell you, these Bolsheviks have learnt their Hegelian Dialectics well."

If Rove has set a trap for us, is it a trap we can get out of or avoid falling into in the first place? And if so, how? If Karl Rove wants these two sorts of people, who are the people he doesn't want because I want to be one of them. Do I try to predict their next fucking move? Instead of waiting for today's zerohedge article to appear with the headline "Will Armenia Be The Next Victim of Western-backed Regime Change" and thinking I should have guessed that one, maybe I should have been poring over maps, articles weeks, months ago, and gleefully coming up with the solution: the next area of conflict will be Armenia. Take that, Karl Rove. But then what?

Or I could go backwards into history to examine where the real power has always been, how it is wielded, who exactly has wielded it and for what purposes, in order to come up with patterns and likelihoods of future behaviours and realities. That road gets lonelier the further you travel down it, and cold winds there await you.

PavewayIV , Apr 19, 2018 11:14:33 PM | 144
Jen@115 - "...If that's the case, then wouldn't spraying victims of a chlorine gas attack with water - the White Helmets' standard first-response catch-all medical treatment - only make most of their symptoms worse?"

I think the mystery visitors to the Douma clinic were just yelling "Gas attack!" without specifying chlorine as they started the water-dousing panic. They were not White Helmets.

Flushing skin/hair/eyes with reasonable amounts of water would dilute and wash away any hydrochloric/hypochlorous acid that it happened to create. Spritzing with a spray bottle would probably be a bad idea for decontamination.

Jesrad@128 - Eglin is home to the stateside part of CENTCOM and the 4th MISG (formerly PsyOps). Deception of or otherwise 'shaping the opinions of' the American public is part of their mission. Whatever they don't do, the DoD and State Department does through their various propaganda efforts directed at American citizens, who are compelled to pay for that propaganda. Funding Middle East wars is kind of a self-licking ice-cream cone when PsyOps is part of the budget. Thus, my endearing love for CENTCOM - the pall bearers of western democracy.


All - The endless Syrian CW narrative has a much more strategic purpose in case anyone forgot. Israel - SCUDS - CWs. That's why Libya and Iraq were suppose to be and existential threat to Israel that justified ANY preemptive protective attack. And that was exactly why Assad/Syria was suppose to be such a threat to Israel - remember? They can't let the CW narrative die.

Israel needs to keep its own people terrified of Assad's 'hidden' CW-tipped missiles. Americans must fully believe Assad has a hidden CW stockpile for use on Israel. That way, when Israel uses the Assad (or maybe ICRG) CW missile false flag to justify a preemptive, protective attack (and land grab), Americans will willingly send their sons and daughters to die in a war against them for Israel. Nobody will even question it in the US. I can see Wolf Blitzer rolling around under a coffee table in Tel Aviv with his gas mask on backwards and the air raid sirens wailing in the background. CNN: "Wolf! Wolf... for God's sake... Can you hear me? Are you OK, Wolf? Any Sarin symptoms yet? DAMN YOU, Gasser Assad!"

[Apr 21, 2018] The couple Merkel/Sauer knows exactly how to evaluate that so-called evidence in Douma false flag

Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Hmpf | Apr 20, 2018 5:51:46 AM | 165

@163 WillyW

Angela Merkel is not stupid - things are way worth than that.
She's got a PhD in physical chemistry, and what's rather mind-boggling in that context is the fact that her husband Joachim Sauer is a professor of chemistry and one of the worlds foremost experts in surface chemistry.
In the 2000s this guy was in the top 30 list of the worlds most extinguished chemists - let that sink in for a second.
The couple Merkel/Sauer knows exactly how to evaluate that so-called evidence, yet... - as I said the situation is way worse as generally anticipated.

[Apr 21, 2018] And another twist to the Duma saga

Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

And another twist to the Duma saga - STUNNING coincidence? Chlorine containers from Germany and smoke bombs from Salisbury (Skripal poisoning) found in Syria

Posted by: Fran | Apr 19, 2018 11:38:27 AM | 60


Christian Chuba , Apr 19, 2018 12:48:16 PM | 68

'Chlorine is undetectable' - b
"If, as the terrorist supporters claim, Chlorine was used in the 'chemical attack', the OSCE investigators are unlikely to find any physical evidence of it. Chlorine dissipates and leaves no unique traces in the dead body." - B

Does the OPCW have any coroners? I believe it leaves scarring in the lungs

"Chlorine required a concentration of 1,000 parts per million to be fatal, destroying tissue in the lungs , likely through the formation of hydrochloric acid when dissolved in the water in the lungs (2Cl2 + 2H2O → 4HCl + O2)"

It has been less than two weeks. There should be bodies available to examine unless Assad has carted them off to his Crematorium in Damascus where he disposes of his victims in front of his bust of Adolf Hitler.

Pnyx , Apr 19, 2018 12:49:59 PM | 69
Well, to answer the final question, it is indeed possible...
Thanks for the peace very well done B. But here comes more work to do. The NZZ today is publishing a peace about Belgian firms selling 96 t of Isopropanol to Syria which is described as precursor substance needed for the manufacturing of Sarin, between 2014 and '16(Nervengift, https://www.nzz.ch/international/syrien-belgische-firmen-liefern-stoff-fuer-nervengift-ld.1378789) insinuating the Assad did this. What do you make out of this? It seems to me this is an important matter to counter.
jawbone , Apr 19, 2018 12:54:11 PM | 71
CC @66 -- Re: Autopsies of Douma victims

Could be possible, unless the White Helmets took them all up to Idlib with them on the buses? Heh.

I can't recall where I read it, but it was stated that the bodies of the Douma victims had been buried. Nothing about where.

[Apr 21, 2018] If Edmond Mulet is involve in Douma gas investigation, Syria Arab Republic and Russia Federation are guilty.

Notable quotes:
"... The Russians are stopping the investigation, the BBC informed me, numerous times. Of course they forgot to mention all the real reasons that the UN want to slow them down. Once the OPCW find nothing, they can say 'those pesky Russians stalled the investigation, so that we wouldn't find evidence'. It's brilliant really. Just like the tired old plots from the movies, the UN need some new story writers. Shabby, stale and predictable, to say the least. ..."
Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

OJS | Apr 19, 2018 5:29:47 PM | 113

@Don Bacon | Apr 19, 2018 4:26:47 PM | 103

..The joint UN-OPCW team was headed by Guatemalan Edmond Mulet who was presumably vulnerable to blackmail because he was once active in child trafficking as described here.

If Edmond Mulet is involve in Douma gas investigation, Syria Arab Republic and Russia Federation are guilty. Beside a child trafficking he's a fucking anti Dr. Assad.. Pls read NYT below...

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/29/opinion/syria-chemical-weapons-united-nations-security-council.html

OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR

How the Security Council Failed the Syria Chemical Weapons Investigators and Victims
By Edmond Mulet

Dec. 29, 2017

"....From August 2015 to October 2016, a team of investigators looked into eight cases of the use of chlorine as a chemical weapon and one case involving the use of sulfur mustard. Three attacks were attributed to the Syrian government and one to the Islamic State. The Security Council failed to reach agreement on any consequences for these crimes.

A few weeks after an April 4 sarin gas attack on Khan Sheikhoun, Syria, which killed approximately 100 and injured at least 200, I accepted the job to lead the investigative team....."


Jen , Apr 19, 2018 6:12:34 PM | 116

This information was posted by Christian Chuba @ 68:

'... Does the OPCW have any coroners? I believe [chlorine gas] leaves scarring in the lungs

"Chlorine required a concentration of 1,000 parts per million to be fatal, destroying tissue in the lungs, likely through the formation of hydrochloric acid when dissolved in the water in the lungs (2Cl2 + 2H2O → 4HCl + O2)" ...'

If that's the case, then wouldn't spraying victims of a chlorine gas attack with water - the White Helmets' standard first-response catch-all medical treatment - only make most of their symptoms worse? The eyeballs need irrigation with water but other symptoms must be treated differently.

From CDC website: symptoms of chlorine poisoning
https://emergency.cdc.gov/agent/chlorine/basics/facts.asp

Blurred vision

Burning pain, redness, and blisters on the skin if exposed to gas. Skin injuries similar to frostbite can occur if it is exposed to liquid chlorine

Burning sensation in the nose, throat, and eyes

Coughing

Chest tightness

Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath. These may appear immediately if high concentrations of chlorine gas are inhaled, or they may be delayed if low concentrations of chlorine gas are inhaled.

Fluid in the lungs (pulmonary edema) that may be delayed for a few hours

Nausea and vomiting

Watery eyes

Wheezing

From WWI: The Medical Front
http://www.vlib.us/medical/gaswar/chlorine.htm

"... The first effect of inhalation of chlorine is a burning pain in the throat and eyes, accompanied by a sensation of suffocation; pain, which may be severe, is felt in the chest, especially behind the sternum. Respiration becomes painful, rapid, and difficult ; coughing occurs, and the irritation of the eyes results in profuse lachrymation. Retching is common and may be followed by vomiting, which gives temporary relief. The lips and mouth are parched and the tongue is covered with a thick dry fur. Severe headache rapidly follows with a feeling of great weakness in the legs; if the patient gives way to this and lies down, he is likely to inhale still more chlorine, as the heavy gas is most concentrated near the ground. In severe poisoning unconsciousness follows; nothing more is known about the cases which prove fatal on the field within the first few hours of the "gassing," except that the face assumes a pale greenish yellow colour. When a man lives long enough to be admitted into a clearing station, he is conscious, but restless; his face is violet red, and his ears and finger nails blue ; his expression strained and anxious as he gasps for breath; he tries to get relief by sitting up with his head thrown back, or he lies in an exhausted condition, sometimes on his side with his head over the edge of the stretcher in order to help the escape of fluid from the lungs. His skin is cold and his temperature subnormal; the pulse is full and rarely over 100. Respiration is jerky, shallow and rapid, the rate being often over 40 and sometimes even 80 a minute ; all the auxiliary muscles come into play, the chest being over-distended at the height of inspiration and, as in asthma, only slightly less distended in extreme expiration. Frequent and painful coughing occurs and some frothy sputum is brought up. The lungs are less resonant than normal, but not actually dull, and fine riles with occasional rhonchi and harsh but not bronchial breathing are heard, especially over the back and sides ..."

AntiSpin , Apr 19, 2018 7:03:30 PM | 123
@103, quoting Edmund Mulet

". . .and the Syrian Government was accountable for the release of sarin in an April 2017 attack in Khan Shaykhun, the head of a Security Council-mandated investigation said Tuesday."

That may be what he said "on Tuesday", but here's what the actual UN report said on October 26th of 2017:

"To date the Mechanism has not found specific information confirming whether or not an SAAF Su-22 operating from Al-Shayrat airbase launched an aerial attack against Khan Shaykhun on 4 April 2017."

To the best of my knowledge there has been no subsequent report, so the above quote is the official final statement on the results of the investigation, regardless of anything that Mr. Mulet may have said at some later date.

Also, if one reads the entire report, he will find numerous hintings, not so very subtle, about false flag possibilities, and also hinting that the reader should not take everything in the report at face value. It is a very interesting read, for those things if for no other reason.

Grieved , Apr 19, 2018 9:55:42 PM | 139
So now we live at a moment in history when non-establishment actors have investigated the alleged attack in Douma before the OPCW even gets there. And as is clear, and as b posits, this stalling action holding up the visit is to allow time for someone - anyone, please - among the establishment forces to come up with a counter to the truth already revealed.

I suspect that the evidence on video - captured by simple enough cameras and spread through the Internet around the world now - combined with the fact of numerous ordinary folks strolling around the killing field without suffering any harm, has made this false flag untenable beyond any saving of face.

Propaganda only works to crowd out the truth, so that people never encounter the truth. But propaganda doesn't work in open battle against the truth, when people are hearing both sides. The process takes time, but like water it wears down the tallest wall.

What's really good is that the enemy has shown repeatedly that it doesn't understand the failure of its tactics, and so it keeps using the old playbook. And with each ploy, the tactics fail more miserably, and the true evidence accumulates more forcefully. And probably here in Douma they'll tangle themselves in even more ridiculous fabrications just to keep the OPCW away forever.

So maybe it won't be this one. Maybe this isn't the ploy that builds and builds to leave a big enough smoking gun to discredit the entire western apparatus. Perhaps we are not quite there yet. But it's obvious that Russia thinks we're getting closer.

I'll call it now and say we are in the post-tipping point age of the information war.

The next ploy will fail even more miserably. And the one after that will fail even worse. And very soon, who knows, a smoking gun could appear that brings the common people out in their multitudes, in one of those synchronicity moments of truth that the aristocrats and privileged functionaries of the establishment fear more than anything in creation.

Gumby , Apr 20, 2018 2:23:24 AM | 154
@103
@112
@122

Even more than Mulet's child trafficking, one should look at his role in the coup in Haiti. Mulet, acting on behalf of the UN, attempted to intimidate president Preval into leaving the country on election day. He indicated that the results of the election would not be accepted if they were not in line with American objective. http://cepr.net/blogs/haiti-relief-and-reconstruction-watch/haitis-former-president-preval-has-credible-charges-that-un-tried-to-remove-him

Mulet was in close contact with Hillary Clinton's State Department during this period. Search his name in Wikileaks' diplomatic cables, and you'll come up with numerous results.

In essence, he's a tool of western power. The JIM report was just one more act to bolster the Western narrative. Also, note that his UN-OPCW JIM report was not accepted by either the UN or the OPCW. After the rejection, he wrote the aforementioned op-ed for the New York Times , and he most likely was the source of a leak of OPCW test results to Reuters , which supposedly linked all the sarin attacks to the Syrian government. This article has been essential in providing "independent" confirmation of Assad's guilt, even though it's essentially just leftovers from the politicized JIM investigation.

Recently, Mulet has popped up on 60 Minutes and the neocon Vice News as a talking head to keep the "Assad gasses his own people" narrative alive. On Vice he explicitly advocates for the FUKUS air strikes.

All around, a shady character and Western fixer.

duplicitousdemocracy , Apr 20, 2018 7:00:03 AM | 176
The Russians are stopping the investigation, the BBC informed me, numerous times. Of course they forgot to mention all the real reasons that the UN want to slow them down. Once the OPCW find nothing, they can say 'those pesky Russians stalled the investigation, so that we wouldn't find evidence'. It's brilliant really. Just like the tired old plots from the movies, the UN need some new story writers. Shabby, stale and predictable, to say the least.
Harry , Apr 20, 2018 7:34:41 AM | 179
@ Nick Bailey | 171

Or OPCW could spike samples themselves, they are falsifying reports for years now, and thats a fact, not just "highly likely."

Don Bacon , Apr 20, 2018 8:51:04 AM | 185
A big part of being the "leader of the free world" is to manage events to fit the narrrative.

Given the US/UK strategy of fake chemical attacks to be blamed on Russia and Syria it is important that the work of the Organization for the Prevention of Chemical Weapons be managed. OPCW reports deriving from Fact Finding Missions either have to be buried or prevented.

The OPCW employs an FFM when requested by a country, with the resulting report sent to that country only. The Salisbury FFM was requested by UK, the FFM report was sent to UK, where it was buried and will never be publicized.

Douma has a different dynamic because the FFM was requested by Russia, with the ensuing report bound to be made public, so it was necessary to prevent the FFM from doing its job. That's when the US puppet Peter Drennan with his Keystone Kops UN police agency was injected into Douma, to prevent the FFM from taking place.

Christian Chuba , Apr 20, 2018 11:43:12 AM | 198
UN-OPCW JIM report
Gumby @153 -
"Also, note that his UN-OPCW JIM report was not accepted by either the UN or the OPCW"

Okay, I know that people will say that it was rejected at the UN because of the Russia UNSC veto trump card but do you have a reference to the OPCW rejection?

Assad coercing witnesses in Douma

Yikes, I read the BBC link. I was hoping to find an obvious falsehood because the WH's and NGO's have been getting sloppy lately but it's the perfect lie . They claim 'to have heard from' people who have had their families threatened.

So how does one go about refuting this? The lying NGO's in the UK are basically saying that they got a cell phone call from one of the medical workers left in Syria. Oh, and they can't tell you who because they will face reprisals. I hate those lying SOB's.

james , Apr 20, 2018 1:52:29 PM | 208 Gumby , Apr 20, 2018 2:15:41 PM | 209
Christian Chuba @198

I may have been a bit imprecise there because the OPCW process is extremely murky. But basically, after Russia vetoed the JIM report at the UN, the U.S. made a proposal to the OPCW Executive Council to condemn the Syrian government for its use of chemical weapons. I'm not positive, but my understanding is that if this proposal had succeeded, it would have essentially adopted the JIM report as an official OPCW document. There's very little reporting on this maneuvering around this, but here's what the AP said:

Members of the OPCW's Executive Council were scheduled to meet later Friday to debate their response to the report.

A draft decision put forward by the United States, Colombia, Estonia and Saudi Arabia is expected to be discussed.

It calls for the council to demand that the Syrian government immediately stop using chemical weapons and to express "its strong conviction that those responsible for the use of chemical weapons must be held accountable," according to a copy of the draft text seen by The Associated Press.

Executive Council decisions are generally adopted by consensus, but with the United States and its allies at loggerheads with Russia and its supporters, it is likely to be put to a vote.


https://www.usnews.com/news/world/articles/2017-11-24/opcw-chief-unfortunate-that-syria-probes-mandate-blocked

The U.S. was forced to withdraw its proposal. Again, the specifics of this are murky, but you can read Sputnik 's brief report on that here. Russia doesn't have veto power on the OPCW-EC, meaning, I assume, that the resolution was going to fail in the EC by a vote.: https://sputniknews.com/world/201711241059415284-us-syria-rejection-opcw/

The upshot of all this is that Mulet's JIM Report is not an official document of either the UN or the OPCW. Its official status now is essentially just the opinion of its authors.

Gumby , Apr 20, 2018 2:17:14 PM | 210
By the way, regarding the UN, it's obviously true that Russia exercised it's veto power against adopting the JIM report. And they also used their veto power to strike down the proposal to extend the JIM's mandate (which, thanks to the U.S., was voted on before the JIM's report was even released). However, it's worth noting that the U.S. has a comfortable built-in majority at the UN, which essentially necessitates a veto to combat. Even many of the states that backed the U.S. on both of these proposals agreed with Russia that the JIM was flawed. Russia further argued that its work had become completely politicized. Which is not surprising given Mulet was head of it

Here's a summary of the UN debate on extending the JIM: https://www.un.org/press/en/2017/sc13040.doc.htm

Note for example, the comments by the Ethiopian ambassador:

TEKEDA ALEMU (Ethiopia) expressed regret that the Council had not been able to adopt the draft resolution since the Mechanism had been created on the basis of consensus. Ethiopia had voted in favour of the text because there remained credible allegations of chemical weapons use in Syria, he said, adding that renewing the mandate should ensure continuity of the Mechanism's work. Despite today's outcome, Ethiopia was hopeful that the Council' unity would be restored and compromise found, because failure to renew the mandate would be send the wrong message to the perpetrators. However, today's outcome should not be interpreted as an a priori endorsement of the Mechanism's report, he cautioned, emphasizing that its final version was expected to establish clear responsibility for the two incidents mentioned. Those responsible for the use of chemical weapons should be punished on the basis of robust and conclusive evidence, he said, underlining, however, that it was impossible to overlook the concerns of the Russian Federation and Bolivia, which was the reason why politicization must be avoided.

[Apr 21, 2018] Speaking of propaganda outlets

Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

james | Apr 19, 2018 9:35:58 PM | 136

Speaking of propaganda outlets.. how about the usa state dept daily briefings? it is another prime example!

https://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/dpb/2018/04/280609.htm

example -

" QUESTION: Syria, to pick up on where we were on Tuesday with the OPCW still not having gotten access to Duma and apparently still that situation is still the same. One, do you have anything to say about that? And secondly, you and I had a little bit of a conversation about potential – your belief that the Russians and/or Syrians are tampering with any evidence of the chemical attack. Does the continued delay give you more concern that that might be the case?

MS NAUERT: Yeah. So to address both your questions, we can confirm that the OPCW team has still not been able to enter Duma in Syria. It is now 12 days since the attack took place on men, women, and children, those innocent civilians, in Syria. We have credible information that indicates that Russian officials are working with the Syrian regime to deny and to delay these inspectors from gaining access to Duma. We believe it is an effort to conduct their own staged investigations. Russian officials have worked with the Syrian regime, we believe, to sanitize the locations of those suspected attacks and remove incriminating evidence of chemical weapons use.

We have also watched as some people have seemingly been pressured by the government to change their stories about what actually occurred that night. We have reports from credible people on the ground who have indicated that they have been pressured by both Russia and Syria to change their stories, to try to change their stories so that it doesn't appear that Russia and Syria are responsible for those attacks. We certainly know that Syria is responsible for those attacks."

[Apr 21, 2018] Napalm is worse than chemical weapons. So are white phosphorous and Dense Inert Metal Explosives (DIME) used by "Israel" against Palestinians

Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Why is nobody questioning NATO's theatrical assertion that chemical weapons are the worst-of-the-worst? Quite frankly, I don't buy it.

Here's a What's Left article from mid-2015 which examines that specious and overblown claim from several perspectives and concludes that it's hokum...

Rethinking Chemical Weapons https://gowans.wordpress.com/2015/06/27/rethinking-chemical-weapons/

Imo, the only reason NATO's unimaginative weasels, dorks and 'boffins' chose chemical weapons on which to base their childish smear campaign is that Ordinary Citizens are less familiar with chemical weapons, and their effects, than with most of the violent methods used to kill and maim people in times of war (and peace).

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Apr 19, 2018 9:23:59 AM | 43

Hoarsewhisperer , Apr 19, 2018 9:39:57 AM | 46
Napalm is worse than chemical weapons.
So are white phosphorous and Dense Inert Metal Explosives (DIME) used by "Israel" against Palestinians.
They're worse because the intention is to maim without killing.
Tobin Paz , Apr 19, 2018 10:53:39 AM | 50
@43 Hoarsewhisperer
Napalm is worse than chemical weapons.

I don't know whether to laugh or cry at the irony. So we have Bolton in his first week on the job and Mattis "The Butcher of Fallujah" authorize an illegal missile strike in response to an "alleged" chemical weapons attack... both members of the Bush administration that used white phosphorus and napalm in Iraq.

And who reported it at the time... none other than George Monbiot and The Guardian:

The US used chemical weapons in Iraq - and then lied about it

Until last week, the US state department maintained that US forces used white phosphorus shells "very sparingly in Fallujah, for illumination purposes". They were fired "to illuminate enemy positions at night, not at enemy fighters". Confronted with the new evidence, on Thursday it changed its position. "We have learned that some of the information we were provided ... is incorrect. White phosphorous shells, which produce smoke, were used in Fallujah not for illumination but for screening purposes, ie obscuring troop movements and, according to... Field Artillery magazine, 'as a potent psychological weapon against the insurgents in trench lines and spider holes...' The article states that US forces used white phosphorus rounds to flush out enemy fighters so that they could then be killed with high explosive rounds." The US government, in other words, appears to admit that white phosphorus was used in Falluja as a chemical weapon.

...

There were widespread reports that in March 2003 US marines had dropped incendiary bombs around the bridges over the Tigris and the Saddam Canal on the way to Baghdad. The commander of Marine Air Group 11 admitted that "We napalmed both those approaches". Embedded journalists reported that napalm was dropped at Safwan Hill on the border with Kuwait. In August 2003 the Pentagon confirmed that the marines had dropped "mark 77 firebombs". Though the substance these contained was not napalm, its function, the Pentagon's information sheet said, was "remarkably similar". While napalm is made from petrol and polystyrene, the gel in the mark 77 is made from kerosene and polystyrene. I doubt it makes much difference to the people it lands on.

[Apr 21, 2018] Bare-faced lies in the Guardian

Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Apr 19, 2018 3:07:17 AM | 15

OT but very relevant to the Skripal/Douma incidents.

The Guardian has an article today headlined " The taboo on chemical weapons has lasted a century – it must be preserved " which is a bare-faced lie as the Guardian should know because the British used chemical weapons against the Russian in August, 1919, less than a century ago, and the Japanese, among America's closest allies used them against the Chinese in World War 2.

The strongest case for Churchill as a chemical warfare enthusiast involves Russia, and was made by Giles Milton in The Guardian on 1 September 2013, which prompted this article. Milton wrote that in 1919,scientists at the governmental laboratories at Porton in Wiltshire developed a far more devastating weapon: the top secret "M Device," an exploding shell containing a highly toxic gas called diphenylaminechloroarsine [DM]. The man in charge of developing it, Major General Charles Foulkes, called it "the most effective chemical weapon ever devised." Trials at Porton suggested that it was indeed a terrible new weapon. Uncontrollable vomiting, coughing up blood and instant, crippling fatigue were the most common reactions. The overall head of chemical warfare production, Sir Keith Price, was convinced its use would lead to the rapid collapse of the Bolshevik regime. "If you got home only once with the gas you would find no more Bolshies this side of Vologda."

A staggering 50,000 M Devices were shipped to Russia: British aerial attacks using them began on 27 August 1919 .Bolshevik soldiers were seen fleeing in panic as the green chemical gas drifted towards them. Those caught in the cloud vomited blood, then collapsed unconscious. The attacks continued throughout September on many Bolshevik-held villages .But the weapons proved less effective than Churchill had hoped, partly because of the damp autumn weather. By September, the attacks were halted then stopped.


The rest of the article defends Churchill against claims that he wanted to use "poison gas" in India and Iraq against tribesmen by suggesting that he meant tear gas but equally he could have been referring to mustard gas which "only" killed about 2.5% of the 165,000 WW1 soldiers it was used against but that was with a level of medical care I doubt Indian or Iraqi tribesmen could even begin to dream off. Peter AU 1 , Apr 19, 2018 4:20:05 AM | 23
"The 'chemical incident' has likely been faked. It suspiciously happened just a few days after U.S. President Trump had announced the he wanted the U.S. military to leave Syria. A year earlier a similar incident was claimed to have happened after a similar announcement by Trump. The U.S. had responded to the 2017 incident by bombing an empty Syrian airfield."

Watching reports coming out of Syria in real time, I thought it was a genuine strike.
Same as I thought the JK build up was the real thing and also the 59 missiles a year ago.

Once the dust, smoke, and the fog of war had cleared, it became apparent that this, was yet again a choreographed move, same as the missiles on Shayrat airfield.

I may well be wrong, as I do not go along with group think here, but this strike seems a preemptive move by Trump to prevent a push for for US military action in Syria that will take us to WWIII.

[Apr 21, 2018] Syria - Who Is Stalling The OPCW Investigation In Douma

Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Why has the fact finding mission (FFM)of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) not visited Douma?

The OPCW inspectors are held up by the United Nations Department of Safety and Security (UNDSS) which has a say about any movement of UN aligned organizations in areas that might be dangerous. The UNDSS is led by an Australian police / intelligence officer. The holdup seems to be intended.

On Sunday April 8 videos were published of an alleged 'chemical attack' in Douma near Damascus. At that time the area was under control of Jaish al-Islam, a Salafi terrorist organization financed by Saudi Arabia. The various videos from terrorist supporters like the 'White Helmets' were unconvincing. They showed obviously arranged scenes of an alleged 'barrel bomb' and manipulated bodies of dead children that had been moved and decorated with shaving foam to superficially fit the claims of a 'chemical incident'. Another video showed people in a hospital being doused with water for no apparent reason.

An often quoted opposition news outlet, the Syrian Observatory in Britain, denied that a 'chemical attack' had happened. It reported on April 8 of suffocation after a shelter collapsed due to bombing:

[I]n among the casualties there are 21 civilians including 9 children and 3 women were killed as a result of suffocation caused by the shelling which destroyed basements of houses as a result of the violence bombardment that stopped about an hour ago on Douma area.

The 'chemical incident' was likely faked. It suspiciously happened just a few days after U.S. President Trump had announced the he wanted the U.S. military to leave Syria. A year earlier a similar incident was claimed to have happened after a similar announcement by Trump. The U.S. had responded to the 2017 incident by bombing an empty Syrian airfield. A day after the incident the Salafi terrorists of Jaish al-Islam gave up and left the area under a ceasefire deal arranged with the help of the Russian military in Syria. The ceasefire deal does not allow the Syrian army to enter the area, only the Russian military police is allowed.

Russian military police immediately entered the area and investigated the house where, allegedly, people were killed by 'chemical weapons'. They found no evidence that such an event had taken place. The Syrian government asked the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical aWeapons (OPCW) to investigate the case.

Many international news teams have since visited the area where the incident allegedly took place. The also visited the field hospital shown in one of the opposition videos. Doctors at that hospital deny (vid) that any patient of theirs had been affected by a chemical attack. The cases they had seen had breathing difficulties caused by the inhalation of dust thrown up through exploding bombs and artillery. Alleged 'victims' shown in the hospital video claim (vid) they were paid to perform.

The regime-change shills are denying that any claims of the hospital staff working in the now government controlled Douma could be true. Medics are liars, unless they are controlled by Jihadis. See for example this shoddy propaganda piece by the Guardian: Syrian medics 'subjected to extreme intimidation' after Douma attack by Martin Chulov in Beirut and Kareem Shaheen in Istanbul. karlof1 , Apr 19, 2018 12:56:35 PM | 72

According to Lavrov , the UN security team did come under fire by terrorists who were tipped off as to who they were and when they'd arrive. Lavrov's comment echoes that made by Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov, who observed "Someone does not want an unbiased professional investigation to take place."
partisan , Apr 19, 2018 12:59:08 PM | 73
Syrian boy from the Chemical video found by Russian TV crew in Duma.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JPFaEG9vJT4

[Apr 21, 2018] When the FO is headed by Boris 'Serial liar' Johnson it becomes very hard to know who to believe. But when neoliberal MSM cut somebody on air, you know is it better to beleave this guy

Notable quotes:
"... Sky News cuts of British General. https://southfront.org/sky-news-cuts-off-former-british-general-while-he-questiones-douma-chemical-attack / ..."
Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

Kokkos , 13 Apr 2018 15:41

Sky News cuts of British General. https://southfront.org/sky-news-cuts-off-former-british-general-while-he-questiones-douma-chemical-attack /
TheKingOfHate , 13 Apr 2018 15:41
"Russian claims that UK staged Syria gas attack 'a blatant lie'"

When the FO is headed by Boris 'Serial liar' Johnson it becomes very hard to know who to believe.

JBigglesworth , 13 Apr 2018 15:41
Further to my post on Russell-Moyle's Tweet:

Lloyd Russell-Moyle
(@lloyd_rm)
It is worth noting that the British Government approved exports of dual use precursors for chemical weapons including sarin to Syria between 2004 and 2012, after the civil war began and after Assad was accused of using gas. CAEC report (2015): pic.twitter.com/TsvthAcZRR

April 13, 2018

Further down his thread is a tweet where someone has a screen-grab of a Mail Online story from 2013. It talks about leaked information about clearance given by the US Government for a British security company to stage a chemical weapons attack in Syria in order to provide a pretext for bombing.

I have no idea whether this is true or whether it was genuinely from Mail Online, perhaps someone with more know-how than me could find out.

At first, I laughed at the Russian suggestion that the attack on Douma had been staged. Now I'm not so sure.

[Apr 21, 2018] Operation Timber Sycamore and Douma false falg

Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

Jay_Q123 , 13 Apr 2018 15:36

Your article appears to apportion blame solely to Assad and you don't even attempt to address the opposition in Syria. Nobody seriously questions that the Syrian governments war has killed many thousands and thousands of civilians. How can you not refer to the international jihad and the make up of these fighters, as well as the sieges they laid on villages, town and cities and the cruelty they inflicted upon the people?

The Syrian Arab Army is a composite of Sunni, Shia, Christians, and different ethnicity's, what convinces you that they have in any way wantonly killed civilians? The soldiers have family all over Syria, plus no mention of the 300,000+ civilians that have been liberated from Eastern Aleppo and Eastern Ghouta in the last several months.

I find this article very bizarre indeed. The most simple explanation for the disaster in Syria is that a sovereign state protected its national interest from an international contingent of mercenaries. There are Moroccans and Chechnyans, Uighurs and Brits, Saudis as well as Syrians in this armed army. What other options did a state such as Syria have when fighting against ISIS, Al Qaida, Al Nusra and 'The Army of Islam', Jaysh Al-Islam? All have which have direct connections to our major ally in the region, Saudi Arabia.

Somebody correct me if I am wrong but I can not find any reference at all to the enemy in this article. It's written as if the 8 year war has simply been an extermination war against civilians and completely out of context with reality.

Check out Operation Timber Sycamore for more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timber_Sycamore

BoomersStealingMoney , 13 Apr 2018 15:32
The west stoked and funded the Wahabists. Secular Asad is our buffer against the Saudi version of Islam.

Whatever happens we cannot let the Saud version of Islam win.

The Sauds have spread their Wahabi version of Islam using oil money. And we have armed the Sauds.

Justin Thyme , 13 Apr 2018 15:31
The USA and WMD@S

US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld helped Saddam Hussein build up his arsenal of deadly chemical and biological weapons. As an envoy from President Reagan 19 years ago, he had a secret meeting with the Iraqi dictator and arranged enormous military assistance for his war with Iran. Mr Rumsfeld, at the time a successful executive in the pharmaceutical industry, still made it possible for Saddam to buy supplies from American firms. They included viruses such as anthrax and bubonic plague, according to the Washington Post.
The USA provided $1.5 billion worth of Pathogenic, toxigenic and other biological research materials were exported to Iraq; 1985-89.

1) US based company, Alcolac International exported mustard gas to Iraq; 1987-88.
2) Almost 150 foreign companies supported Saddam Hussein's WMD program; 1975-
3) US directly attacked Iran by hitting Iran's oil platforms; 1987.
4) US directly attacked Iran's navy in unproportioned and unreasonable war; 1988.
5) US shot down Iranian civilian airliner in the Iranian territory; 1988.

This is the equivalent of a pathological paedophile giving a sermon against child abuse when the US preaches its corrupt moral practices regarding Syria!!!

[Apr 21, 2018] The scientific service of the german Bundestag calls the bombing contrary to international law

Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

The scientific service of the german Bundestag calls the bombing contrary to international law: http://www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/syrien-bundestags-gutachten-verurteilt-vergeltungsschlag-von-usa-und-co-a-1204004.html

Posted by: Anonymous | Apr 20, 2018 11:25:51 AM | 197

[Apr 21, 2018] S-300 as Carrot and Stick

Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

S-300 as Carrot and Stick

RT has an article out this morning quoting Lavrov (whose diction is always, impeccably, exact)

to the effect that Russia now has "no reason to *not* supply its S-300 missile system to Syria"
in light of the US strike. Several well-sourced Syrian accounts were reporting the sale of S-300s
to Syria as a done deal, but I think this is premature. Lavrov is asking the US and Israel to give
Russia a reason not to provide the S-300 to Syria. Lavrov is saying the fate of the S-300 in the
MIddle East is now open for renegotiation. On the other hand, Lavrov knows that neither the US
nor Israel can be trusted to abide by the terms of any negotiated outcome. So in the *best* case
scenario, he may be hoping to gain by this gambit a significant (if temporary) reduction of US / Israeli
/ Saudi military interference in the Russian attempt to bring Syria to political settlement.

Would Israel rather: (1) see the US withdraw from a Syria that does not have the S-300?
(2) see the US remain within a Syria that does have the S-300?

The US will not bomb any Syrian S-300s while Russia is around. Israel would have to
take this task on itself. But does Israel *really* want to take on this task? Given that
it could go very badly in any number of ways?

Posted by: WJ | Apr 20, 2018 11:12:32 AM | 194 Don Bacon , Apr 20, 2018 11:20:44 AM | 195

@193
The S-300 carrot & stick has legs.
> May 30, 2013 - Israel could overcome advanced S-300 anti-aircraft missiles if they were deployed in Syria but any strikes on the system would be difficult.
> Dec 1, 2015 - For Israel, more problematic have been Russia's plans to sell the less advanced, but hardly less problematic S-300 missile system to both Syria and Iran
likklemore , Apr 20, 2018 1:38:08 PM | 204
Apologies if this is already posted:

Coming after the RF Military spokesmen suggested Syria should be allowed S-300 air defense, Mr Lavrov joins:


Lavrov: After US-led strikes, Russia has 'no moral barriers' on S-300 deliveries to Syria
RT

Following the US-led bombardment of Syria last week over an alleged chemical attack by Damascus, Russia says it has no reason to not supply its S-300 missile system to Syria, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said.

Moscow agreed with its international partners about 10 years ago to not deliver the S-300 to Damascus. "We took into consideration their argument that this would destabilize the situation, despite the missile systems being a purely defensive system," Lavrov said in an interview to RIA Novosti.

But given the latest spiraling of the crisis – in particular the use of the alleged Douma chemical attack as pre-text for striking Syria – things may take a U-turn. While around a decade ago, Moscow "heeded" the calls of its partners and put the deliveries on hold, the Russian foreign minister said it now has "no such moral obligation."

In the wake of the US-led operation on Syria, Russia said it may consider sending supplies of S-300 missile systems to Damascus. Moscow believes it is "possible to return to mulling over the issue, and not only with regard to Syria but also to other states as well," Russian General Staff Spokesman General Sergey Rudskoy stated[.]

And in other news, DNC today filed $multi-million lawsuit against Russia, Trump and Wikkileaks for conspiring to defeat Hillary in 2016.
ZH link

Guess they filed this action without knowing Rudy Guiliani has just joined Trump's legal team.

First question for Plaintiff: Why was the FBI denied access to the hacked servers?

His name was Seth Rich

Oh, and good luck collecting from Russia and Wikkileaks.


[Apr 21, 2018] Trump and Hanlon's Razor: Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Posted by: A P | Apr 19, 2018 9:13:10 AM | 41

Trump and Hanlon's Razor: Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

The rest of the Rothschild/Zionist/Deep State swamp has long hidden behind such useful idiots, including most of the elected/bureaucratic/bankster/militarist puppets infesting NATO countries.

The Rothschilds et. al. cannot avoid the label of malice, as they have long acted purposefully on the declaration in the mid-1700's: "I care not who sits on the British throne, the man who controls the money supply controls the Empire... and I control the money supply." Baron Mayer Rothschild

"If my sons wanted no wars, there would be none." Baron Mayer Rothschild's wife.

For 300 years the Rothschilds have controlled the political and economic levers that resulted in the endless line of wars. The Balfour Declaration by which the British gov't stupidly endorses to this day was written to (and largely by) the Baron Rothschild of that day.

Attempting to discern intent by the visible layer of the otherwise well-disguised Rothschild Promised Land agenda is a fools errand.

"By deception thou shalt do war." The Mossad motto. The Rothschild modus oprandi.

/div> div
div
ralphieboy , Apr 19, 2018 9:32:18 AM | 45
@A P #41

"For 300 years the Rothschilds have controlled the political and economic levers that resulted in the endless line of wars. The Balfour Declaration by which the British gov't stupidly endorses to this day was written to (and largely by) the Baron Rothschild of that day."

If we have allowed these people to yank our chains for the past three centuries, then it must be because they are a f*ck of a lot smarter and more motivated than the rest of us stupid Gentiles.

But we believe in a system in which the smartest and most motivated should rise to the top...

[Apr 21, 2018] The outcome is that the US can no longer count on air superiority anywhere in the world where Russian air defences operate

Notable quotes:
"... The treaties which promise US allies that an attack on them will draw US military support for their collective defence – Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty (NATO), Article 4 of the Australia New Zealand US Treaty (ANZUS), Article 3 of the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance (Rio), and the Japan, Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan, Pakistan and Israel defence treaties – are dead letters. ..."
Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Posted by: Likklemore | Apr 20, 2018 8:46:38 PM | 48

If you haven't read John Helmer's " Bear and sitting Duck suggest it be added to your weekend read.

@ S 33

Thanks for clarifying.

A few snips:

US President Donald Trump didn't mean to start a revolution. President Vladimir Putin tried persuading him not to. But on April 14 the revolution was launched by American warplanes, surface ships and a submarine.

The outcome is that the US can no longer count on air superiority anywhere in the world where Russian air defences operate, backed by Russian command-and-control systems. Without air superiority, the US has no force multiple on the ground of the magnitude required for the Pentagon to attack; that is, the ratio of American men and firepower the Pentagon calculates for making sure their enemies on their ground can be defeated.

This is revolutionary, and has spread instantly to every war front -- the Russian lines with NATO; the Korea-Japan front; the Taiwan Straits and South China Sea for China; and the Indian Ocean for India and Pakistan.

The treaties which promise US allies that an attack on them will draw US military support for their collective defence – Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty (NATO), Article 4 of the Australia New Zealand US Treaty (ANZUS), Article 3 of the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance (Rio), and the Japan, Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan, Pakistan and Israel defence treaties – are dead letters.

So long, shock and awe – that was the American warfighting doctrine against people who lack Russian-standard defences. [.]

The S-300, which Iran and Greece operate, and the S-400, which guards the Russian naval and air bases in Syria and which Turkey is acquiring, are capable of striking both aircraft and missiles. This is the game-changer for Syrian defence against Israel if the S-300 is delivered, as the Russian Defence Ministry is now proposing. [.]


LINK

Oh my, NuttyYahoo is on the phone.

[Apr 21, 2018] Russia has transferred forty Pantsir-S1 air defense systems to Syria' Air Defence

Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

tayacase , 13 Apr 2018 15:50

Russia has transferred forty Pantsir-S1 air defense systems to Syria' Air Defence.
This is the latest air defence technology (the system is in service since 2012) - a combined short to medium range surface-to-air missile and anti-aircraft artillery weapon system against aircrafts, helicopters, precision munitions, cruise missiles and UAVs.

https://southfront.org/russia-delivered-40-pantsir-s1-air-defense-systems-to-syria-state-media /
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pantsir-S1

[Apr 21, 2018] Amazingly BBC newsnight just started preparing viewers for the possibility that there was no sarin attack, and the missile strikes might just have been for show

Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Posted by: Paul Cockshott | Apr 20, 2018 6:56:29 PM | 41


Paul Cockshott , Apr 20, 2018 6:56:29 PM | 41

Amazingly BBC newsnight just started preparing viewers for the possibility that there was no sarin attack, and the missile strikes might just have been for show, i plying Trump did it for political reasons. Narrative changing a bit.
Anonymous , Apr 21, 2018 2:47:25 AM | 57
#Germany's state media senior correspondent (who is in Damascus right now & also visited Douma) on primetime evening news on German television: "#Douma chemical attack is most likely staged. A great many people here seem very convinced."

https://twitter.com/Brasco_Aad/status/987432370595876864

Fran , Apr 21, 2018 2:55:06 AM | 58
Karlofi#35 and frances#18
Michael Quinn on Russia Insider is wondering about the same thing too: Tucker Carlson MIA for 2 Days After Exposing Syria Gas Hoax - Deep State Revenge?

I too hope he will return soon, he seems to be one of the last sane voices of the msm. Hopefully high viewer rates help to bring him back, but he wouldn't be the first one to vanish from the screen, despite high ratings.

[Apr 21, 2018] There's no good option in Syria by Jonathan Freedland

You face the same the liars with the sexed up dossier who went on to murder hundreds of thousands in Iraq and Libya. This is all too reminiscent of previous interventions
Consider WW1, Suez, Iran 1953, Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, Yemen and every other western militarily intervention in the ME - whether directly or by proxy - and identify one that hasn't just caused more instability, death, violence and displacement than there was already?
Apr 21, 2018 | www.theguardian.com

e are caught between a rock, in the form of the recklessness of Donald Trump, and a hard place, shaped by the cruelty of Bashar al-Assad. This is the choice that now confronts citizens and their representatives in Britain, France and the US. The reasons to resist signing up for any project led by Trump should be obvious, with the newly published testimony of James Comey, the FBI director he fired, providing a fresh reminder.

Trump is a congenital liar who is devoid of empathy, a narcissist with a nihilist's view of the world. These are not mere character defects; they have a bearing on the decisions the de facto leader of any action in Syria would take. Among the reasons I opposed the 2003 invasion of Iraq was my fundamental distrust of George W Bush and his circle, especially on the matter of motive. Trump, with his tweeted mood swings – first, vowing to withdraw from Syria altogether, then threatening an imminent missile bombardment, then signalling a delay – makes Bush look like a statesman.

But even if a moral paragon were sitting in the Oval Office, there would be grounds for restraint. The record of past western military interventions in the Middle East is bloody and shaming, as the peoples of both Iraq and Libya can testify. Barack Obama, no gung-ho cowboy, was the commander-in-chief in the latter case. And yet what was originally billed as a discrete military action to prevent an impending civilian slaughter in Benghazi escalated into a bombardment that led to regime change and mayhem. It stands as a textbook illustration of western bombs' ability to make a bad situation worse.


LiviaDrusilla -> BullNakano , 13 Apr 2018 16:26

It's clear now that although Assad has 'won' the war a status quo of him ruling a predominately Sunni country can't be returned to. He seeks to terrorise and punish the Syrian people under the protection of Russia and Iran.

Even though the army which has made such huge sacrifices for the Syrian state is about 70% Sunni?

The US and her allies have to intervene, otherwise the rule of international law is worthless.

Why? Even if your premise above were true, which it isn't, why is it our job to intervene in every country with an imperfect system? Or are you proposing we bomb every Middle Eastern country where people are privileged and granted citizenship merely on account of their religion?

dannymega -> mjlnkc , 13 Apr 2018 16:26
Yes, because Assad wants to be bombed by the West just as he is winning, I know - makes perfect sense.
solidstae -> John Favre , 13 Apr 2018 16:25
I love these guys who won't do their own research. Why not? Axe to grind? This is just one example from 2013. There's more but I'm too busy to look up public shit for you.

https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/may/6/syrian-rebels-used-sarin-nerve-gas-not-assads-regi /

GLT24 -> Squiddlywidget , 13 Apr 2018 16:18
Spot on look what happened to Sadaam after he switched to the Euro for Iraq oil sales.
Ghaddafi had similar plans.
Without reserve currency status and petrodollar with US economy will collapse under the $21T dollar debt.
Russia and China have recently agreed a bilateral trade agreement which cuts out the dollar.
The US cannot permit this ...as always follow the money.
Some people murder others for political and ideological reasons the military industrial complex starts wars and conflicts ,murdering millions for profit....evil personified
Squiddlywidget , 13 Apr 2018 16:10
Could this whole drama be because China and Russia are ditching the petrodollar?
I watched the video of the attack and it looks fake to me.. those children are not crying because of chlorine.. they have their eyes wide open..first thing you do when you have chlorine in your eyes is touch your face and close your eyes..whole thing looks dodge..just my opinion. Those children are wide eyed and looking at the camera..something you wouldn't do if you'd just been gassed.

[Apr 21, 2018] CIA, MI6 and rebels: Rebels can be genuine protesters but they will brutally used by CIA and MI6 for nefarious purposes

Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

junglecitizen -> LeftOrRightSameShite , 13 Apr 2018 15:44

We, along with the US, France and Gulf states have supported, armed and trained "rebels" in Syria the whole time. We've had, as have others, special forces operating inside Syria


So, there would never be rebellions against totalitarian dictators if it weren't for the CIA and MI6.

I don't buy this. It's very convenient if you're an anti-war person who doesn't want to face an ethical dilemma. But it's not real.

[Apr 21, 2018] Eight fundamental British lies over the Skripal attack.

Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

karlof1 | Apr 19, 2018 1:07:42 PM | 74

Here we have a translated transcript of Shulgin's testimony at OPCW's Hague HQ where he points out the 8 fundamental British lies over the Skripal attack. He prefaces his remarks thusly:

"I would like to start my speech with the words that belong to the great thinker Martin Luther, "A lie is like a snowball: the further you roll it, the bigger it becomes".

"This wise aphorism is fully applicable to politics. He who has chosen the path of deception will have to lie again and again, making up explanations for discrepancies, spreading disinformation and doing forgery, desperately using all means to cover the tracks of the lies and to hide the truth.

"The United Kingdom has entered this slippery path. We can clearly see all of this on the example of the "Skripal case" fabricated by the British authorities, this poorly disguised anti-Russian provocation accompanied by an unprecedented propaganda campaign, taken up by a group of countries, and the finalized unprecedented expulsion of diplomats under a far-fetched pretext. Please, do not try to pass this group for the international community – it is far from that."


Bakerpete , Apr 19, 2018 9:55:05 PM | 138

A good statement.

http://thesaker.is/statement-of-a-shulgin-at-the-opcw-ec/

anti_republocrat , Apr 19, 2018 11:40:19 PM | 145
@ the pessimist | Apr 19, 2018 1:05:37 AM | 1

Not sure when Shulgin gave his statement, but today's briefing by Zacharova is even more impressive and revealing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8cjrgPc4Ew&feature=youtu.be&t=2026

It seems that BZ was detected not only by Spiez, but also by a lab in the Netherlands. The explanation given is that BZ was added to the specimens in order to validate the competence of the contracted labs. Furthermore, they attempted to explain away the existence of pristine Novichok in the specimens in a dosage that would have been fatal, thus confirming that the Spiez lab did indeed find such pristine Novichok. You can't make this sh*t up.

Oh, what a tangled web! The wonder is not so much that MI5/MI6 would perpetrate such a false flag, but that they would be so utterly incompetent about it.

anti_republocrat , Apr 19, 2018 11:47:20 PM | 147
@anti_republocrat | Apr 19, 2018 11:40:19 PM | 144

Clarification: The reference to "pristine" Novichok is that Spiez found the toxic agent in a non-degraded form that could not have survived either within the human body or in a collected specimen. They thought it was a contamination. My opinion is that it was added by the British before delivering the specimens, just to be sure the contracted labs would detect it. Also, the fact they claimed to have deliberately contaminated the specimens with BZ is a clear indication it could just as easily be that the BZ was there from the beginning and the actual contamination was with the agent from the Novichok family. Zakharova called it "weird." I'll say!

WJ , Apr 20, 2018 12:08:28 AM | 148
PavewayIV @143,
Funny you should mention a "preemptive protective attack." The Bush preemption doctrine must not have been found suitably effective for domestic propagandist purposes; as since then, if I am not mistaken, the preferred move has been to engineer an actual "event" that the US is forced to "respond" to. The WMD bombast fit the preemption doctrine. The relatively more modest "chemical attack" has the advantage of being easily produced whenever necessary. I think this development signals an advance in the rhetoric of propaganda between Bush II and Obama. Perhaps the PR folks judged Americans to be finally more stupid than malicious as a group. Optimistically put.

anti_republocrat @146

I believe there were four samples (2 bio, 2 enviro); I think it is likely that the 2 bio samples are the ones with BZ in the control. Why? Pure coincidence, procedure, unrelated to anything, etc. Or because the Skripals, and not their doorknob, were poisoned with BZ.

[Apr 21, 2018] The vast majority of supposed 'NGO's' are fronts for jihadists 'rebels' who want an Islamist state

NGO now are favorite cover of intelligence agencies.
Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

MartinSilenus -> imperium3 , 13 Apr 2018 14:13

"Remarkable how Saddam Hussein gassing Iranian troops by the thousand, while world powers helped him do it and covered for him at the UN is treated as a minor exception to non-use of chemical"

He also used poison gas to kill thousands of his own Kurdish civilians, the Reagan administration was in many ways a moral cesspit. They knew exactly what he was doing. A spokesman said the Iranians - who never used Chemical Weapons on principle - used the poison gas, on Iraqi Kurds. I think Reagan never really understood this, that is my assessment of his character, he saw what reality he wanted to see, but nothing else.

LiviaDrusilla -> Bangorstu , 13 Apr 2018 14:12
There has been no independently gathered or assessed medical evidence. None.

What is this 'NGO' you speak of? The vast majority of supposed 'NGO's' are fronts for jihadists 'rebels' who want an Islamist state.

wryape , 13 Apr 2018 14:12
" Back then the death toll in Syria stood at around 100,000. More than 400,000 have died since that day. The proof is there if we can bear to look at it. Inaction, too, can be deadly"

And how many died after the war was "won" in Iraq. And how many would have died trying to remove assad. Toppling assad would almost certainly not have brought peace. Your analysis is simplistic and blinkered and definately doesn't contain any proof of anything. Sometimes there's just not a solution. The current proposed bombing campaign smacks of somethingmustbedoneism. Those responsible for the gas attacks must face justice. But it might have to be further down the line.

NHSmonami -> Laurence Bury , 13 Apr 2018 14:12
Western countries have been guilty of mudering hundreds of thousands in starting Middle East wars.

[Apr 21, 2018] Whose sarin by Seymour M. Hersh

Notable quotes:
"... 19 December 2013 ..."
Apr 21, 2018 | www.defenddemocracy.press

19 December 2013

Barack Obama did not tell the whole story this autumn when he tried to make the case that Bashar al-Assad was responsible for the chemical weapons attack near Damascus on 21 August. In some instances, he omitted important intelligence, and in others he presented assumptions as facts. Most significant, he failed to acknowledge something known to the US intelligence community: that the Syrian army is not the only party in the country's civil war with access to sarin, the nerve agent that a UN study concluded – without assessing responsibility – had been used in the rocket attack. In the months before the attack, the American intelligence agencies produced a series of highly classified reports, culminating in a formal Operations Order – a planning document that precedes a ground invasion – citing evidence that the al-Nusra Front, a jihadi group affiliated with al-Qaida, had mastered the mechanics of creating sarin and was capable of manufacturing it in quantity. When the attack occurred al-Nusra should have been a suspect, but the administration cherry-picked intelligence to justify a strike against Assad.

In his nationally televised speech about Syria on 10 September, Obama laid the blame for the nerve gas attack on the rebel-held suburb of Eastern Ghouta firmly on Assad's government, and made it clear he was prepared to back up his earlier public warnings that any use of chemical weapons would cross a 'red line': 'Assad's government gassed to death over a thousand people,' he said. 'We know the Assad regime was responsible And that is why, after careful deliberation, I determined that it is in the national security interests of the United States to respond to the Assad regime's use of chemical weapons through a targeted military strike.' Obama was going to war to back up a public threat, but he was doing so without knowing for sure who did what in the early morning of 21 August.

Read also: A looming provocation? Turkey, Syria and the refugees

He cited a list of what appeared to be hard-won evidence of Assad's culpability: 'In the days leading up to August 21st, we know that Assad's chemical weapons personnel prepared for an attack near an area where they mix sarin gas. They distributed gas masks to their troops. Then they fired rockets from a regime-controlled area into 11 neighbourhoods that the regime has been trying to wipe clear of opposition forces.' Obama's certainty was echoed at the time by Denis McDonough, his chief of staff, who told the New York Times : 'No one with whom I've spoken doubts the intelligence' directly linking Assad and his regime to the sarin attacks.

Read more at https://www.lrb.co.uk/v35/n24/seymour-m-hersh/whose-sarin

SOURCE www.lrb.co.uk

[Apr 21, 2018] Neoliberal media and goverment talking points

Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

creelo -> sejong , 13 Apr 2018 14:57

We're now in a strange position where the media is actually behind the government. May is doubtful about bombing because she's a politician and so has to constantly monitor her popularity, but the only people left still writing in 'newspapers' are still programmed to want war and bombing because it always used to sell.

"Since you're here..."

HarrytheHawk -> JackDowland , 13 Apr 2018 14:56
'There is overwhelming evidence...'

Where?

Let's see it.

You might want to show it to James Mattis while you're at it as he doesn't seem to be willing to settle for accusations.

Jazzfunk23 , 13 Apr 2018 14:56
The UN duly investigated and in October concluded unambiguously that the Assad regime had used sarin gas.

You omitted to mention that the same report also concludes that ISIL deployed Sulphur Mustard, isn't this the same gas that France claims to have evidence regarding the recent incident?

Besides, how much evidence do we need? Even before Douma, Assad's use of chemical weapons had been documented seven times this year alone.

The link you provided to back-up this claim contains no substantiative evidence to attribute those incidents to Assad.

Clearly both sides in this conflict appear to have used chemical weapons, making assumptions or false accusations of blame at this stage is incredibly dangerous. I'm in total agreement with Jeremy Corbyn, we need a solid investigation on which the international community can act. Any potential escalation of this awful conflict must be avoided at all costs, particularly when it involves a nuclear armed superstate, considering the on-going humaitarian crisis in Syria and how it has already affected the world. Furthermore we must not allow a cabinet of a minority government to make any final decisions on the UK involvement in further militrary action, our elected representatives MUST be allowed to debate and decide a course of action, otherwise our democracy is in a far worse state than I could have possibly imagined.

thatotherbloke , 13 Apr 2018 14:54
Theresa May leads a minority government propped up by an unlawful bung to a right wing extremist group. May, her Cabinet of half wits and her self serving party have a mandate for sweet FA, and that includes killing people in our name.
sejong , 13 Apr 2018 14:52
MSM has gone full neocon on Syria.

Bomb like it's 2003.

psoptim11 , 13 Apr 2018 14:52
There is massive, overwhelming opposition in the UK to May's attempt to join Trump & Macron in bombing Syria and to by-passing our democratic parliament, but who would have thought it?

The media are generally presenting Theresa May with a free ride to cause death and destruction on a massive scale. Claiming she's joining an international coalition (even though it consists of only 2 other countries) and having the backing of the Cabinet and therefore possessing the authority to go to war.

The reality is that she's virtually politically isolated and working in defiance of the British people. Labour - and most other opposition parties, including the Lib Dems, SNP, Plaid, and the Greens are totally against military intervention and calling for a full, democratic debate in Parliament.

Then the Conservative Party itself is bitterly divided over the issue.

And only 22% of British people would support the war effort, according to a poll in the Times.

The timing is being forced by Donald Trump and the US, so where's the substance in the Conservative claim that they're 'taking back control'?

And then any intervention is likely to cost billions, so what about The Deficit? And what about that magic money tree?

Moreover, the Government maintain we cannot allow such inhumanity in Syria to go unchallenged. So where is the outcry at defenceless citizens being killed in Gaza? And in Yemen? And in Saudi Arabia? What accounts for the blatant double standards? What are they not telling us?

And why does the British Goverment justicfy selling all these lethal and inhumance weapons to these countries in the first place?

Where is the media reminding the Government of what happened in Iraq, in Libya and in Afghanistan?, whenever we intervened?

Where is the media remembering the findings of the Chilcott Report?

If this was Labour nationalising the railways or expropriating land in an emergency bill to launch a massive house-building programme, the BBC and mass media would quote every adversary and critic they could muster and express total outrage at any attempt to by-pass Parliament.

The Syrian conflict is a hugely complex quagmire and we enter it at our peril. We need a much more objective Press to scrutinise Government policy, before this lunacy unravels and triggers a seriously calamitous hot war between the Superpowers, from which we'd all be losers.

Jeremy Corbyn is often mocked and scorned by the media for his measured reactions, but his call for the UK to use its influence to defuse tensions makes him one of the only responsible and mature political leaders around right now!!

dumbwaiter , 13 Apr 2018 14:52
The government and the BBC have been using the words "suspected chemical attack" in Syria and that Russia is "highly likely" to be responsible for the Salisbury affair.

Now if that isn't official doubt I don't know what is.

Still May happy to drop bombs on this basis without parliamentary approval (if Donald says so that is)!

[Apr 21, 2018] OK - its the We Cannot Do Nothing, Therefore We Must Do Something, Therefore We Must Bomb Them argument.

Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

bubmachine , 13 Apr 2018 14:39

OK - its the We Cannot Do Nothing, Therefore We Must Do Something, Therefore We Must Bomb Them argument.

Convinced? No.

DZ76 , 13 Apr 2018 14:39
This is pathetic. The mouthpieces of the British government (Guardian and BBC) have spent the last week on a steady pendulum of demanding war, shitting themselves, then when the rhetoric calms down a bit, demanding war again. The U.K., its security agencies and its house-trained media are destabilising the world.

[Apr 21, 2018] How about some basic honesty about the role the US and it's allies have played in fostering and continue if this civil war

Notable quotes:
"... How about some basic honesty about the role the US and it's allies have played in fostering and continue if this civil war. That, coupled by a complete retreat of US imperial neoliberal ambitions across the entire region, you know, might just be incredibly effective ..."
"... Are we seriously going to pretend we and our allies haven't provided financial, technological, diplomatic, political and military support to this extremely heterogenous group of rebels, without which the whole uprising (a legitimate uprising, sure, but certainly not a viable one) would have been over in a few months, without any of the atrocities, tragedies and destruction of the past 6 years? ..."
"... For Europe and the US to have any credibility the double standards applied has to come to an end ..."
"... Sorry but the arguments in the article don't hold water. Reeks of the longstanding agenda of the war profiteers and the Clinton gang to invade this country. On hypocritical reasons. ..."
Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

HoublaHoubla , 13 Apr 2018 14:44

Here's an idea Jonathan for another solution. How about some basic honesty about the role the US and it's allies have played in fostering and continue if this civil war. That, coupled by a complete retreat of US imperial neoliberal ambitions across the entire region, you know, might just be incredibly effective
notndmushroom , 13 Apr 2018 14:42

But nor can we watch the brutal dictator slaughter his own people

Why not? We're watching Israelis shoot and kill unarmed Palestinians, we're watching our favourite Saudis bomb and kill Yemeni civilians, we're watching our Nobel-winning inspirational Myanmar leader oversee the persecution, massacre and forced displacement of an entire people, we're watching the North Korean leader oppress and starve his people while stepping closer to a nuclear war against a currently volatile superpower, we're watching the Philipino head of state launching a literal war against low-level drug dealers and junkies, we're watching several central Asian dictators imprison and torture dissidents and oppress their people while robbing them of their national wealth, we're watching the Chinese and Russian leaders do pretty much the same, we're watching the Turkish leader kidnap dissidents from EU countries, imprison thousands of alleged dissidents and invade a neighbouring country to fight against part of said countries' inhabitants, we're watching corrupt politicians, media and judges completing the final touches of a coup in the fifth largest country in the world, and then there's Africa, which is a whole other chapter.

What specifically is it about Syria that made you decide that yeah, all these things are pretty bad, but that's the one thing we really have to do something about?

Perhaps that was why, five years ago, the House of Commons voted to leave the Assad regime untouched. Back then the death toll in Syria stood at around 100,000. More than 400,000 have died since that day. The proof is there if we can bear to look at it. Inaction, too, can be deadly.

Inaction? Really? Are we seriously going to pretend we and our allies haven't provided financial, technological, diplomatic, political and military support to this extremely heterogenous group of rebels, without which the whole uprising (a legitimate uprising, sure, but certainly not a viable one) would have been over in a few months, without any of the atrocities, tragedies and destruction of the past 6 years?

fishandart , 13 Apr 2018 14:42
For Europe and the US to have any credibility the double standards applied has to come to an end. Israel has to comply with UN resolutions and the US has to stop using its veto to block those resolutions that seek to make Israel comply to international standards of acceptable behaviour.

If we can't do that we can forget getting Assad or Putin or anyone else to respect anything we have to say. As it stands the so called West has no moral authority in the Middle East.

Ziontrain , 13 Apr 2018 14:41

But nor can we watch the brutal dictator slaughter his own people

Why is this supposed slaughter such an imperative when we seem to approve of and even profit from selling weapons to slaughters elsewhere in the region

Sorry but the arguments in the article don't hold water. Reeks of the longstanding agenda of the war profiteers and the Clinton gang to invade this country. On hypocritical reasons.

[Apr 21, 2018] Pay for what? Be President of a country marked out for regime change by the West and successfully managing to fight off the West's proxy armies of terrorists over seven years in defence of that country?

Notable quotes:
"... Conveniently missing from this short history of Syria: That the US was actually heavily involved using the CIA in getting rid of Assad. Had that not been the case, perhaps there would have been no prolonged civil war. ..."
"... Oh, I know challenging the holy West and its exceptional leading nation is verboten nowadays, but can we at least be honest about what is really going on today? Syria is being punished for not joining the coalition of the willing in 2003 by being subjected to the same illegal war by false claim as Iraq was then. ..."
Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

MightyBuccaneer , 13 Apr 2018 14:14

Conveniently missing from this short history of Syria: That the US was actually heavily involved using the CIA in getting rid of Assad. Had that not been the case, perhaps there would have been no prolonged civil war.

It would be just another dictator, the likes of which can be found all over the world without columnists noticing it.

Strangely though, all that is deplored is that the US didn't do even more. That they didn't also do a full blown invasion.

NewWorldOutOfOrder , 13 Apr 2018 14:14
"Why, of course, the people don't want war. Why would some poor slob on a farm want to risk his life in a war when the best that he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece. Naturally, the common people don't want war; neither in Russia nor in England nor in America, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy or a fascist dictatorship or a Parliament or a Communist dictatorship

Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

– Hermann Goering (as told to Gustav Gilbert during the Nuremberg trials)

Briar , 13 Apr 2018 14:14
Pay for what? Be President of a country marked out for regime change by the West and successfully managing to fight off the West's proxy armies of terrorists over seven years in defence of that country?

Oh, I know challenging the holy West and its exceptional leading nation is verboten nowadays, but can we at least be honest about what is really going on today? Syria is being punished for not joining the coalition of the willing in 2003 by being subjected to the same illegal war by false claim as Iraq was then.

solidstae , 13 Apr 2018 14:14
Assad has always acted in this like any other authoritarian government anywhere in the Middle East would, fighting a civil war. Israel is just as ruthless when facing a threat to its authority.

This mess was financed, planned, egged on and armed by the U.S., it's junior partners and its clients in Turkey and the Gulf. And it goes back years before the rebellion against Assad. The Wahabbi rebels have been given billions in cash, arms and training, funneled through Turkey and the Gulf states.

Now we have Washington, London and Paris shrieking outrage and promising revenge against a strongman they unleashed as the result of yet another regime change adventure. And then there's the incredible hypocrisy and cynicism of using Al-Qaeda affiliated actors to do it.

Assad's wartime iteration, like ISIS, is the result of American greed, ambition, pride and the old imperialist bent for aggression as a way of imposing its geopolitical will.

[Apr 21, 2018] These children are not the casualties of a gas attack

Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

gragor , 13 Apr 2018 13:48

Watch the Unbearable video gain. The children are no foaming at the mouth, their colouration is not cyanotic, they do not appear to be in respiratory distress. The premise of the argument is not based on fact. These children are not the casualties of a gas attack. GROW UP and recognize the propaganda.
minutehands , 13 Apr 2018 13:38
The article takes a self-righteous moral high ground while calling for some vague affair of violence. I can't help but notice that these articles by people who pretend to be moderates and centrists have a habit of turning reality and morality on their head. It's dangerous and very Orwellian stuff.
entropyrules , 13 Apr 2018 13:44
The question that I struggle to answer is, "Are journalists like this actually duped by propaganda themselves, or are they knowingly part of the process of dissemination?"
What I do not struggle to see is that they are undoubtedly part of the prevailing neolib/neocon philosophy which we rapidly need to dismantle.
ChairmanMayTseTung , 13 Apr 2018 13:36
Cui bono?

Who would gain by getting the US back on the ground in Syria?
Who would gain from Russia and the US coming into conflict?

Rogue elements in the US?
Israel certainly
ISIS terrorists?
Saudi Arabia?

[Apr 21, 2018] First Joust by Israel Shamir

Trump strangely immature twits on Douma attack disqualify his as a statesman.
Notable quotes:
"... the strike has been definitely an act of aggression against a sovereign state despite an objection of a permanent SC member, namely Russia. ..."
"... Now the gates of hell are open, international law has been demolished, and this happened because Putin agreed to accommodate Trump's strike, said Ivashov. ..."
"... I'd consider that a good conclusion of the fictional chemical weapons story. The story has fallen to pieces altogether, anyway. The poisoning of Skripal ended with the old spy in good health; with Boris Johnson being caught lying; with [the chemical weapons control body] OPCW refusing to connect Skripal's poison to Moscow; and with Brits keeping Miss Skripal incommunicado under duress, away from her fiancé and the rest of her family, a clear sign of a collapsing story. ..."
"... The Syrian part of this story collapsed as well, after Robert Fisk , one of the very best British Middle East observers (next to David Hirst) visited Douma and delivered a report straight from the donkey's mouth, i.e. as told by a doctor of the clinic videoed by the White Helmets. ..."
"... The Russians actually located some people who are seen in the video, and they say it was staged. ..."
"... An interesting bit of data, proving that preparations for the strike were carried out before the alleged attack, has been published by the Cyprus banking community blog. They say the British air base of Akrotiri on Cyprus had its perimeter urgently strengthened (by the British company Agility) on April 5, that is before the alleged Douma gas attack ..."
"... The OPCW could dispel the mist around both cases, that of Skripal and that of Douma, but do not hold your breath. It appears that OPCW is as integrated into the machinery of the Masters of Discourse as any other international body. Refusal of OPCW to allow Russia to take part in Skripal investigation, despite the clear requirement of its own charter, makes its conclusion doubtful, at best. ..."
"... While inability of OPCW inspectors to enter Douma despite all efforts of Damascus and Russians to facilitate their entry tells us they are not eager to investigate; like they weren't eager to enter Khan Sheykhun last year. ..."
"... please! Trump validated an obvious false flag – again – and launched the strikes before any kind of investigation could have challenged it – again. He's no "hero". He's a weak man at best . Please don't insult real heroes and real bravery. ..."
"... if somebody looks like an idiot, behaves like an imbecile, speaks like a stupid asshat it's very likely you are dealing with an idiot. Stupid bringing boltons and haleys to his circus just had some unforeseen by idiot consequencies. ..."
Apr 21, 2018 | www.unz.com

... Let us face it: Putin did not stop the strike and he didn't make the offender pay a price for this breach of the Law of Nations.

... ... ...

What is worse, Trump's strike destroyed what was left of the international law structure established by Roosevelt, Churchill and Stalin. These three giants created the UN and its Security Council in order to avoid such eventualities by forbidding aggression, and the strike has been definitely an act of aggression against a sovereign state despite an objection of a permanent SC member, namely Russia.

Now the gates of hell are open, international law has been demolished, and this happened because Putin agreed to accommodate Trump's strike, said Ivashov.

... ... ...

The Russian military experts here in Moscow told me that out of a hundred missiles fired by the US and their allies, only one or two were modern cruise missiles ("nice and smart") and they destroyed the research institute in Barzeh. (It was not a "chemical weapons centre", just a chemical research institute; it's destruction was a copy-paste of Bill Clinton's bombing of the pharmaceutical factory in Sudan over a similar pretext.)

All other missiles were old and at the end of their service; they had to be utilised somehow, and so they were. A few of them might have been downed by Syrian anti-aircraft fire, others fell without inflicting much damage.

The Russian experts who were in contact with the US military told me that the US military used this occasion for retraining and refreshing reserve pilots; what they call "a milk run". This combination of old missiles and less experienced pilots helped to lower the efficiency of the strike. And both sides, the Russians and the Americans, admitted that the deconfliction line was operative all the time, to avoid eventualities.

I'd consider that a good conclusion of the fictional chemical weapons story. The story has fallen to pieces altogether, anyway. The poisoning of Skripal ended with the old spy in good health; with Boris Johnson being caught lying; with [the chemical weapons control body] OPCW refusing to connect Skripal's poison to Moscow; and with Brits keeping Miss Skripal incommunicado under duress, away from her fiancé and the rest of her family, a clear sign of a collapsing story. Hopefully, Jeremy Corbyn will be able to use May's debacle for his political advantage.

The Syrian part of this story collapsed as well, after Robert Fisk , one of the very best British Middle East observers (next to David Hirst) visited Douma and delivered a report straight from the donkey's mouth, i.e. as told by a doctor of the clinic videoed by the White Helmets. He said:

"There was a lot of shelling [by government forces] and aircraft were always over Douma at night – but on this night, there was wind and huge dust clouds began to come into the basements and cellars where people lived. People began to arrive here [to the clinic] suffering from hypoxia, oxygen loss. Then someone at the door, a "White Helmet", shouted "Gas!", and a panic began. People started throwing water over each other. Yes, the video was filmed here, it is genuine, but what you see are people suffering from hypoxia – not gas poisoning."

The Russians actually located some people who are seen in the video, and they say it was staged. (Western media says they were threatened into saying what they said). I have more trust in Fisk's report, than in the Russian one, but that may be my own prejudice. Anyway, both versions are not mutually exclusive, they do not contradict each other, but they undermine the fake story that provided the cue for the strike.

An interesting bit of data, proving that preparations for the strike were carried out before the alleged attack, has been published by the Cyprus banking community blog. They say the British air base of Akrotiri on Cyprus had its perimeter urgently strengthened (by the British company Agility) on April 5, that is before the alleged Douma gas attack . The second British air base, Dhekelia, carried out similar works on April 12, a week later, before the decision to strike had been adopted by the British government. The Dhekelia works were done with great speed and urgency, and road-constructing equipment had to be taken from the nearby villages of Xylotympou and Ormideia. The payment to the local workers had been routed via HSBC bank in Hong Kong, they say. And indeed these bases (forcibly retained by Britain) were used for the strike on Syria.

The OPCW could dispel the mist around both cases, that of Skripal and that of Douma, but do not hold your breath. It appears that OPCW is as integrated into the machinery of the Masters of Discourse as any other international body. Refusal of OPCW to allow Russia to take part in Skripal investigation, despite the clear requirement of its own charter, makes its conclusion doubtful, at best.

While inability of OPCW inspectors to enter Douma despite all efforts of Damascus and Russians to facilitate their entry tells us they are not eager to investigate; like they weren't eager to enter Khan Sheykhun last year.

Meanwhile, the Western media and the Jihadi groups on the ground are busy to create a new web of lies instead of the old one. Now they say the Fisk report is suspicious because he was allowed in by the Russians. We can learn of their attitudes from the following twit

"Salih @Salih90119797 Apr 17 More

Replying to @Elizrael

We salute Israel in spite their crimes in Palestine we hope they'll continue their strikes every part of Syria; Iran regime should comedown"

These "Islamic rebels" are actually Israel's stooges rather than warriors of the Prophet. Anyway, people who manufactured these beautiful and complicated simulacra, are still around, and doubtless they will prepare a new one, if it will be necessary. In my view, the two presidents have made heroic efforts at saving their countries and mankind from destruction; both risked their good names, their positions, their reputatiosn to go that far. Trump minimized the bombing, Putin minimized the response.

Both have made some mistakes. Mr Putin made his big mistake when he gave Israel carte blanche to bomb Syria whenever she feels like it. Israeli strikes (and there were more than a hundred of them last year) created the air of permissiveness and that allowed Trump to follow in Israel's footsteps. If Israel bombs Syria, and Russians do not react, why can't Trump? It appears unfair for the US to be bested by its satellite. If you permit Tom to grab your girlfriend's pussy without a single objection, you must be expect that Dick and Harry will try to repeat this feat. Israel created the precedent, the US used it.

I asked Senator Alexey Pushkov, the head of the foreign relations committee, whether he doesn't think it was a mistake, in hindsight. He justified the policy saying that Russia came to Syria in order to fight jihadi groups, ISIS, Al Qaeda et al, not Israel. Russia is friendly to Israel, Iran and Turkey, and it does not want to sort out local disagreements. Pushkov stressed that Russia always censured Israeli raids on Syria, though it didn't act against them. As a matter of fact, if Russia criticized Israel, it was done very, very quietly. The only time this condemnation was made public, happened just now, when the Israeli strike occurred in a very tense moment.

Mr Trump made a mistake when he fired the missiles instead of firing Mueller. But anyway, thank you, Mr Trump, for limiting the damage. Try to complete the withdrawal from Syria, while at it.


Felix Krull , April 19, 2018 at 7:22 am GMT

What is worse, Trump's strike destroyed what was left of the international law structure established by Roosevelt, Churchill and Stalin.

That was accomplished by Tony Blair, Bill Clinton and Gerhard Schroeder when they bombed Kosovo without an SC resolution – simultaneously transforming NATO from a defensive pact to an instrument of US imperialism.

Renoman , April 19, 2018 at 9:26 am GMT
The truth can't be hidden any more the army can't just run amuck at will. Trump and Putin are playing the long game they don't want war they can make more money elsewhere. It's a new day thank God.
Andrei Martyanov , Website April 19, 2018 at 1:10 pm GMT

General (Ret) Leonid Ivashov, an important Russian military observer

I would avoid, despite his high public profile, Ivashov as entirely reliable contemporary military observer. At least I would be very cautious when referencing him. He has his moments but many of his "predictions", not to speak of advice, were not exactly prescient, to put it mildly. Paradoxically, it was his consistently grim, almost to the point of being apocalyptic view of Russia all long that I simply stopped paying attention to him. obviously, reality turned out to be much different. In the end, him "cooperating" with Dugin is not exactly a good sign.

Andrei Martyanov , Website April 19, 2018 at 1:39 pm GMT

This would be too good a result even for the best, latest, and most update systems. The unimpressive outcome of the attack can be explained easier by Trump's decision to minimise the damage, as indeed the Israeli military says.

Anything Israel's military says on this issue is irrelevant and, as always, driven by purely ideological and political considerations. Here is a taste:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-04-19/new-russian-weapons-alarm-israel-may-trigger-next-syrian-crisis

Israel's worst nightmare is competent and properly armed Syrian Air Defense and this is precisely where it is going right now in the area. Per best–subsonic TLAMs of any variety represent with appropriate targeting within integrated system easy targets for something like S1s, which were created from the inception as anti-TLAM systems. Recent IAF strike in Syria (about couple weeks ago) was to prevent deployment of Iranian TOR-M1 in Syria. So, Israelis' opinions on this issue can not absolutely, especially having IDF "stellar" record of bluster and boasting, be taken seriously. Here is an opinion of high ranking US military-intelligence officer which is rather revealing.

http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2018/04/trumps-big-flop-in-syria-by-publius-tacitus.html

Herald , April 19, 2018 at 4:03 pm GMT
@Felix Krull

Kosovo was Blair's first real taste of bombing the innocents and how he liked it. It was hardly surprising to see the veteran warmonger popping up yet again after the Douma hoax and as always he was calling for bombs as the solution. It's always bombs with Blair and it seems he just can't help himself. Which ever side Blair is backing is certain to be the side which is wholly in the wrong. This is the trusted Blair principle and with its 100% record of success, it will save hours of research trying to get a handle on just where the real blame lies in any given crisis. Interestingly, you could substitute the US for Blair and you would get the same result.

Anonymous [232] Disclaimer , April 19, 2018 at 4:38 pm GMT

The main question is whether this Russian fight aversion will encourage the Americans to carry out a future strike, or whether Trump will rein in his adversaries.

Any potential future strikes will diminish Russian fight aversion. Previous Russian restraint was commendable and useful but that part of the conflict is over now. Too many people "in charge" never experienced – or even contemplated – real, personal, consequences for their actions. This will have to change.

In my view, the two presidents have made heroic efforts at saving their countries and mankind from destruction; both risked their good names, their positions, their reputatiosn to go that far. Trump minimized the bombing, Putin minimized the response.

Nigga please! Trump validated an obvious false flag – again – and launched the strikes before any kind of investigation could have challenged it – again. He's no "hero". He's a weak man at best . Please don't insult real heroes and real bravery.

Seamus Padraig , April 19, 2018 at 5:04 pm GMT

Mr Trump made a mistake when he fired the missiles instead of firing Mueller.

My sentiments exactly.

jilles dykstra , April 19, 2018 at 5:48 pm GMT
@RadicalCenter

Putin does not want the last world war.

James Brown , April 19, 2018 at 5:59 pm GMT
@Herald

Well, I don't know how you can be certain that it isn't Putin. Those writing the script might well choose Putin or create another monster to play the role. Putin has been called the new Hitler by the well known democrat and war criminal: Hillary Clinton; and by the clown pretending to be a man and British foreign secretary : BoJo. But I'm not sure that Russia will play the role of Germany. It may well be China. In that case, Hitler will be the Chinese "dictator"

It will be the "whites" against the yellow peril. The MSM and Hollywood, will of course "educate" the masses about this new danger for western "democracy" and "values".. I dare predict that even Russia will be on board

AnonFromTN , April 19, 2018 at 6:31 pm GMT
That's unfair competition. Putin is a normal human being, clearly superior in every way compared to intellectually handicapped nonentities like Trump, Merkel, Macron, May, etc. The West needs Nixons, De Gaulles, and Kohls to stand a chance.
AnonFromTN , April 19, 2018 at 6:38 pm GMT
@James Brown

Suicidal policies of the US have achieved almost impossible: an alliance between Russia and China. Russian poet Alexandr Blok wrote more than 100 years ago the poem "Scythians". Here is a relevant part of it (translated by Alex Miller):

We shall abandon Europe and her charm.
We shall resort to Scythian craft and guile.
Swift to the woods and forests we shall swarm,
And then look back, and smile our slit-eyed smile.

Away to the Urals, all! Quick, leave the land,
And clear the field for trial by blood and sword,
Where steel machines that have no soul must stand
And face the fury of the Mongol horde.

But we ourselves, henceforth, we shall not serve
As henchmen holding up the trusty shield.
We'll keep our distance and, slit-eyed, observe
The deadly conflict raging on the field.

We shall not stir, even though the frenzied Huns
Plunder the corpses of the slain in battle, drive
Their cattle into shrines, burn cities down,
And roast their white-skinned fellow men alive

Steve Naidamast , April 19, 2018 at 7:14 pm GMT
Normally I enjoy Israel Shamir's reporting. However, in this piece he writes as a military analyst, which he is not.

On the one hand there is nothing to be gained by using satire to describe the recent strike on Syria. There is nothing funny about it politically or militarily.

Next, it has already been reported on other sites that the Syrian military hardware used to deflect the large majority of US missiles has been heavily upgraded to support better responses even when using rather dated missile technology.

Israel Shamir has also recently written in other pieces that Putin has little liking for Isreal's Netanayu and that in all of the meetings the two had, the Israeli prime minister received very little to nothing as Putin ignored his requests.

It has also been reported that Syria will receive the upgraded S-300 missile systems. And it is expected they will be moved into the hands of Syrian troops rather quickly.

In terms of US hardware, there is really no such thing as "old" as much of the hardware is junk in any case. Since the Vietnam Conflict, US military suppliers have attained a very well deserved reputation for producing low quality weaponry with only a few exceptions withstanding (ie: F-16). In fact, all of the recent, major US military systems that have been placed into operations or trial-testing have proven to be less than adequate for their tasks.

Finally, quite a number of military analysts have already demonstrated that Russian missile technology is, at the minimum, ten years in advance of similar US technology. Right now there is no contest.

The Russians know how to build exceptional equipment at a fraction of the cost that the US spends on similar equipment. And they will continue to do so.

This is the single reason that the US did not go for the throat in this recent attack as foolish as it was. What we have now is similar to the US Army facing the Wehrmacht in WWII; there was no contest between the two as German soldiers and their equipment were far and away the best in the world at the time. This time however, the US will not be able to count on overwhelming numerical superiority and its manufacturing prowess to subdue a well armed adversary since it has lost both a long time ago

Mark Presco , Website April 19, 2018 at 7:36 pm GMT
This article is a lot of useless verbiage focusing on the kabuki theater by which the masses need to be distracted.

The reason for this madness has nothing to do with any of the reasons stated. My best guess is that It has to do with the global ponzi scheme that is the US dollar. Trump goes along with it because he has been counseled that this is necessary to prevent a global economic collapse. Same for France and Britain. This discredits the conspiracy theory that the global elite want a collapse.

What amazes me is that Russia knows what the real reason for this insanity is, but they also stick to the prescribed talking points. As do the author and most of the commenters

seeing-thru , April 19, 2018 at 8:40 pm GMT
@James Brown

The reason (for Putting being in bed with Israel and generally doing nothing) could be something as simple as Russia's recognition that it is in no position to take on the US-Israel combine. Why resist when you fear getting your nose bloodied?

I suspect that if Putin could turn the clock back, he would do so and rewrite his March 1 speech to refrain from bragging about weaponry and abilities that he himself does not seem to believe in. He is normally a man of very few words, invariably polite in the old nineteenth century style. So what got into him on March 1?

anon [228] Disclaimer , April 19, 2018 at 10:18 pm GMT
@jilles dykstra

Yes but those psychopaths don't mind And they don't mind reminding Putin " you don't want WW3 .Do you ?"
then those psychopaths use the rational thinking on the part of Putin as an endorsement of their cunning treacherous anti human anti citizen anti civilizatioanl activities .

WorkingClass , April 19, 2018 at 11:07 pm GMT
Well, Trump lost me. He is too much like his enemies. The Deplorables are in desperate need of leadership. But none of that matters with regard to Syria. What matters is Imperial aggression, having been blunted, must finally be stopped at Damascus. And this must be done without provoking a nuclear war. Putin has made much progress toward this end. If he is successful he will get full credit. Trump will get none.

Playing rope a dope is painful and makes a fighter appear weak. The Anglo/Zio Empire is in steep decline. Time favors Putin.

Israel is NOT on good terms with Russia. Israel, along with Saudi Arabia, France, Briton and the United States, is AT WAR with Russia. The difference is the Israelis must keep their options open. When the U.S. is just another big country in the Americas Russia will be the arbiter of peace in the region. Israel may have to come to terms with the Palestinians and may have to give up claims on Lebanon and Syria.

Sowhat , April 20, 2018 at 1:15 am GMT
@jilles dykstra

Now, with the neocon madman, Bolton, on board, we will watch our MIIC storm Syria and confront Russia so that manipulating-Israel can keep Syria's Golan heights which it now occupies. The true Endgame, of course, is not Syria but IRAN. THE Neocons hold grudges longer than any.

AnonFromTN , April 20, 2018 at 1:24 am GMT
@James Brown

I agree, civilization-wise Russia is a lot more West than East. The only difference is, over many centuries Russians learned to live peacefully side-by-side with Muslims and Buddhists, who represent the Eastern civilization.

That's why I called the alliance between Russia and China almost impossible. It is quite unnatural. The only driving force for it is the US policy of provoking both Russia and China at the same time. The US and its obedient vassals in the EU succeeded in building high level of distrust in Russia, so that ordinary people (not oligarchs, but looks like Putin got a taste for being popular among the real people, not just the most successful thieves) consider China a lot more trustworthy than the West. While there is certain level of respect for the US in Russia, maybe because its bullying is naively straightforward, a large chunk of the population simply despises spineless, subservient, and utterly hypocritical Europe. I left Russia in 1991. Back then this was unthinkable. Things changed.

A few years ago Pat Buchanan rightly wrote that Obama administration made sure that when the US needs Russia as a counterbalance against China, Russia won't be there for them. Trump faithfully continues this suicidal policy. China has money (enough to finance Russian projects, projects in Asia and Africa, and seriously undermine the US dollar by introducing oil futures trading in yuans at the same time), whereas Russia has weapons. Both have very determined people (as quite a few events in Syria clearly showed). Bottom line is, the US with all its sidekicks stands no chance against Russia or China separately, and even less chance against both of them together. I am sure that, being unnatural, the alliance between Russia and China won't live long after the downfall of the US from its position in the world. But the way things stand now, it will certainly last until that downfall.

Personally, I am not sure that Pax Sinica is going to be any better than Pax Americana, but history shows that all dominant Empires eventually lose that position. In the last 20-30 years the US elites did everything to speed up the demise of this particular Empire.

Big Al , April 20, 2018 at 4:08 am GMT
This is the 4th round of jousting in Syria by my count

1) September 17, 2016 – US warplanes "accidentally" hit Syrian airbase right after cease-fire
2) April 7, 2017 – Trump fires Tomahawks at airbase to punish Assaf for chemical weapons
30 February 7, 2018 – US decimated pro-regime and Russian mercenary forces
3) April 13, 2018 – UK/US/ France fire missiles to punish Assad for chemical weapons

This latest one had the makings of beginning a bigger war but through back channels they both backed down. To their credit, neither military wants to get in to a direct conflict.

James Brown , April 20, 2018 at 4:43 am GMT
@AnonFromTN

"A few years ago Pat Buchanan rightly wrote that Obama administration made sure that when the US needs Russia as a counterbalance against China, Russia won't be there for them. Trump faithfully continues this suicidal policy"

One can not dismiss "stupidity" as an explanation. To be an American president one needs only strong voice, presentation skills and to be ready to serve american"national interest" which is of course private interests of different groups being the "Israel national interest" and MIC the most important ones. They're interlinked.

That said, I don't believe those who really have power in the USA and tell the President what to do, are stupid. So this apparent "US policy of provoking both Russia and China at the same time" seems to me unconvincing. We do not have enough information to know what is really going on.
The division between East and West is an artificial one. Of course "west" is not christian any more. And I don"t know if we can say that "west" was really christian once.
Anyway, Christianity wouldn't have existed without the "East". The Greek Miracle is a Myth. Plato wouldn't have existed without the "East".

"Personally, I am not sure that Pax Sinica is going to be any better than Pax Americana"
Well, historically Chinese empire seems to be less aggressive than any other empire we know of.
They are not interested in civilizing the barbarians But maybe that isn't true anymore.
Empires, like people, do change.

James Brown , April 20, 2018 at 5:52 am GMT
@NoseytheDuke

Thank you. Of course the Russian proverb, if it exists, is "Don't talk with clowns but with the director of circus " . Circus not "circle"

jilles dykstra , April 20, 2018 at 5:58 am GMT
@Sowhat

Grudge ?
I fear the hatred among Muslims against Israel and the USA is greatly underestimated.
Maybe Norman Finkelstein understands, in speeches he explained why Israeli jews are of the opinion that there never can be peace between them and surrounding Muslims, because of what the zionists did, and still do, to Palestinians.
Therefore, I suspect, the Israeli plans, to a large extent already executed, to destabilise the whole Middle East.
Putin therefore is their big enemy.
Now Germany is about to buy USA Predators, I predict more terrorist acts in Germany

yurivku , April 20, 2018 at 11:16 am GMT

If Trump hasn't been skinned yet by the neocons in Washington, it's because he judiciously brought into his camp the worst warmongers, John Bolton and Nikki Haley as human shields in the case of a neocon attack: nobody can accuse a man whose security adviser is Bolton and the UN ambassador is Haley of being soft on Putin. Now they can't voice their indignation. As they say in the army, it's better to have them inside the tent pissing out than outside the tent pissing in.

if somebody looks like an idiot, behaves like an imbecile, speaks like a stupid asshat it's very likely you are dealing with an idiot. Stupid bringing boltons and haleys to his circus just had some unforeseen by idiot consequencies.

As for Putin – it's pure shame, even have no desire to speak about his slick policy. He's surely not an idiot, but his goals more and more differ from mine.

Toy gun , April 20, 2018 at 2:53 pm GMT
I hope this praise of Trump is a rhetorical device. The US has committed to law that is immutable by Congress, which says the US must refrain from use or threat of force (UN Charter Article 2(4).) "But we used armed force in a feckless, half-assed way" doesn't cut it.

What this sissy fight tells us is that the memory of JFK has taught Trump to choose his options from the menu – bomb this or that or the other thing. Bitch about the menu, ask for other options, like peace, and CIA will kill you. As such, Trump is irrelevant to US conduct. He does what CIA will let him do. US policy continues unchanged.

Jean de Peyrelongue , April 20, 2018 at 3:28 pm GMT
I disagree in presenting the aggression on Syria as a fight between Trump and Putin.

This aggression against Syria is a terrorist act made by coward and criminal people throwing bombs and running away. (If they are real christians, they should realized that they have committed a mortal sin). Yet, on the positive side, it has showned that neither Trump nor Putin want a real war and the Apocalypse.

Russia in not fighting the Empire because the Empire is managed by the Devil but because the Empire want to bring Russia to mercy. Russia has no choice; Russia has to fight to avoid "de passer sous le joug".
The Chinese are dealers and traders, the Empire is their biggest customers, they dont want to kill their customers as long as they can do business with him. That is probably the rationale to avoid them being dragged into a conflictual situation.

Both Russia and China are not driven against the Empire by idelogy, only Iran is, and when Iran is fighting against the Empire, Iran is figthing the Devil.

Russia is involved in the Middle-East crisis almost by accident. The 2 Chechnya wars gave Russia some real allergy to the terrorists and Tartus is also an important outpost on the Mediterranean Sea.

The Middle-East crisis is driven by Israel and the Zionists and as long as the zionists are running the Empire, the crisis will go on. They want to reduce all the Arabs in the Middle-East to the state of the Palestinians in Gaza. The victims are the people of Syria, Lybia, Irak, the Yemen and Lebanon and the US, the UK and France do not care.

The US with theirs Europeans dominions are fighting there on behalf the Zionists.

Only a major worldwide economic crisis could bring down the Empire, bring peace to the Middle-East and push the Israelis to an other migration.

FB , April 20, 2018 at 4:34 pm GMT
A heads up to an excellent article by Jim Jatras today

Did the West Just Lose World War III by Forfeit?

Jatras an excellent commentator who has long experience in DC as a senate advisor and US diplomat asks the questions that this silly article by Yoda Shamir fails to ask

' The question remains: will the US peacefully relinquish its position as the sole arbiter of authority, legality, and morality in a unipolar world in favor of a multipolar order where Russia's and China's legitimate interests and spheres of influence are respected? Or will we continue to risk plunging mankind into a global conflict?..'

Jatras also gives a great 35 thousand foot overview of the events of recent days and some of what is being discussed going forward in terms of Syria

And oh yes he does address only tangentially the entire thesis of the silly Yoda Shamir article here

' There was even some speculation that the whole thing was a charade worked out in cooperation with the Russians.

Even if true (and it's unlikely) the mere fact that Trump would have to engage in such a ruse speaks volumes about the weakness of his position.

"Whatever Trump says, America is not coming out of Syria," writes Patrick Buchanan. "We are going deeper in. Trump's commitment to extricate us from these bankrupting and blood-soaked Middle East wars and to seek a new rapprochement with Russia is "inoperative"..'

So much for Yoda Shamir's joustfest

comparing these two articles is a prime example why Jatras is a respected commentator

and Yoda Shamir is a silly claymation figure

FB , April 20, 2018 at 4:56 pm GMT
@seeing-thru

' 3. Russia is in reality militarily weak and tottering economically. Very plausible, very plausible indeed. Putin's March 1st boastful speech then makes perfect sense as the desperate bluff of the desperate leader of a desperate state '

Yet another koolaid addict popping up out of nowhere here on Unz and spreading manure lavishly

This crapola is not what guys with inside info are reporting such as this post on Col Pat Lang's blog

' Another friend who has spoken with military commanders in the CENTCOM AOR told me:

All of the knowledgeable aircraft commanders are usually scared shitless about the prospect of a legitimate air-to-air skirmish with a SU-30 or any Russian air superiority fighter '

And this about Russian air defense capability

' Any air defense engineer with a security clearance that isn't lying through his teeth will admit that Russia's air defense technology surpassed us in the 1950′s and we've never been able to catch up. The systems thy have in place surrounding Moscow make our Patriot 3′s look like fucking nerf guns '

And speaking of Col Lang he has some thoughts today about the koolaid drinkers on this very website

' I wrote a piece for the Unz Review yesterday. You can see it over there. There were over a hundred comments. Most of them were favorable, but some were just awful '

Col Lang's UR article here

No wonder PCR doesn't care to hear from commenters/trolls like this know-nothing 'seeing=thru'

Nobody is interested in more bullshit we get plenty of that as is

white_boy , April 20, 2018 at 5:05 pm GMT
@Thirdeye

The Russians are predestined to fight 'the West'
Instinctively they have always known this
Rationally they have always tried to explain it away
War and Peace can be read as a coming of age story of the Russian Nation
Somehow the Russian Elite is more susceptible to the lure of 'the West' than the Russian commoner
The commoner knows in her gut that 'the West' is her mortal enemy
No doubt that Russia will eventually go all the way against 'the West'
Dragging her feet is just the way Russia always has behaved in existential conflicts
When Napoleon and Hitler came knocking on her door she behaved no different
This time it is different though
I sense that Russia will want to finish this conflict for good
I expect they will go full Carthago on 'the West', erasing them from history

white_boy , April 20, 2018 at 8:26 pm GMT
@AnonFromTN

Russian leaders do seem remarkably sensible, especially when viewed from a western country where hysteria is the norm.
It is because of this sensibility I fear the worst. The mass-delusion gripping the Western political class disconnects them from reality, I can't see this ending well. I would not be surprised if a Western politician announced: "We need to destroy the world in order to save it"
Once the Russian Leaders realize the extent of Western delusion the sensible thing to do might be wiping them out for good.
The only problem with this solution would be that I would be wiped out as well.

FB , April 20, 2018 at 8:48 pm GMT
@James Brown

The nature of power is evil. It's not about "Jewish power". It's about Power.

Agree completely

Also would say that the whole Israel wagging the US dog is not realistic either

Look rationally at the Empire structure we see the vassals like EU and Nato states plus Japan South Korea, Taiwan etc always falling obediently in line

Just today Assad called France a 'Slave' and sent back his silly French Legion of Honor award that they gave him in 2001

Slave just about nicely sums it up

Yet Israel is able to operate with more freedom than the galley slaves why is that ?

It's because Israel is the most valuable of the empire's properties an unassailable fortress in the most geopolitically important region

One could argue that the power of the US Jewish lobby is the thing that let's Israel exercise the kind of independence that the slaves cannot

I have no truck with calling Israel out on its crimes against the Palestinians that has to stop but Israeli society is much smarter and realistic than koolaidland US

FB , April 20, 2018 at 9:09 pm GMT
Another good article heads up

From Conn Hallinan probably the only good writer CounterPunch has left

AnonFromTN , April 20, 2018 at 9:34 pm GMT
@white_boy

I hope it won't come to that, as I live in the US. The hysteria is scary, though. Here it is fuelled by sore losers, Killary and her handlers: she and most of them are guilty of so many crimes (real criminal offenses that put normal people to jail for many years) that they need a distraction. MIC also wants justification for even more money thrown into its maw. Their greed and the perfidy of various self-proclaimed liberals endanger us all.

Miro23 , April 20, 2018 at 10:48 pm GMT
@FB

Yet Israel is able to operate with more freedom than the galley slaves why is that ?

It's because Israel is the most valuable of the empire's properties an unassailable fortress in the most geopolitically important region

One could argue that the power of the US Jewish lobby is the thing that let's Israel exercise the kind of independence that the slaves cannot

In fact quite the opposite. Little Israel controls half a continent (North America) in the same way that little (Imperial) Britain controlled the Indian sub-continent. When Great Britain lost India (the Jewel in the Crown) its power was gone, and when Israel loses the US (its Jewel in the Crown) it's power is also gone.

[Apr 21, 2018] It's a tough old world and we are certainly capable of a Salisbury set-up and god knows what else in Syria.

Notable quotes:
"... It is perfectly possible that the British government manufactured the whole Salisbury thing. We are capable of just as much despicable behavior and murder as the next. ..."
Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

wheelbarrow1 , 13 Apr 2018 14:37

Why is the prime minister of the United Kinkdom on the phone discussing whether or not to bomb a Sovereign country with the highly unstable, Donald Trump?

Can she not make up her own mind? Either she thinks it's the right thing to do or it isn't. Hopefully, the person on the other end of the phone was not Trump but someone with at least half a brain.

Proof, let's have some proof. Is that too much to ask? Apparently so. Russia is saying it's all a put up job, show us your facts. We are saying, don't be silly, we're British and besides, you may have done this sort of thing before.

It is perfectly possible that the British government manufactured the whole Salisbury thing. We are capable of just as much despicable behavior and murder as the next.

Part of the Great British act's of bravery and heroism in the second world war is the part played by women agents who were parachuted into France and helped organize local resistance groups. Odette Hallowes, Noor Inayat Khan and Violette Szabo are just a few of the many names but they are the best known. What is not generally know is that many agents when undergoing their training in the UK, were given information about the 'D' day landings, the approx time and place. They were then dropped into France into the hands of the waiting German army who captured and tortured and often executed them.

The double agent, who Winston Churchill met and fully approved of the plan was Henri Dericourt, an officer in the German army and our man on the ground in France. Dericourt organized the time and place for the drop off of the incoming agents, then told the Germans. The information about the 'D' day invasion time and place was false. The British fed the agents (only a small number) into German hands knowing they would be captured and the false information tortured out of them.

Source :- 'A Quiet Courage' Liane Jones.

It's a tough old world and we are certainly capable of a Salisbury set-up and god knows what else in Syria.

I_Wear_Socks , 13 Apr 2018 14:37
From The Guardian articles today that I have read on Syria, it makes absolutely clear that if you in any way question the narrative forwarded here, that you are a stupid conspiracy theorist in line with Richard Spencer and other far-right, American nutcases.

A more traditional form of argument to incline people to their way of thinking would be facts. But social pressure to conform and not be a conspiratorial idiot in line with the far-right obviously work better for most of their readers. My only surprise it that position hasn't been linked with Brexit.

ChairmanMayTseTung , 13 Apr 2018 14:37
Did anyone see the massive canister that was shown on TV repeatedly that was supposed to have been air-dropped and smashed through the window of a house, landed on a bed and failed to go off.

The bed was in remarkable condition with just a few ruffled bedclothes considering it had been hit with a metal object weighing god knows what and dropped from a great height.

MartinSilenus -> ChairmanMayTseTung , 13 Apr 2018 14:36
"More than 40 years after the US sprayed millions of litres of chemical agents to defoliate"

The Defoliant Agent Orange was used to kill jungles, resulting in light getting through to the dark jungle floors & a massive amount of low bush regrowing, making the finding of Vietcong fighters even harder!

It was sprayed even on American troops, it is a horrible stuff. Still compared to Chlorine poison gas, let alone nerve gases, it is much less terrible. Though the long term effects are pretty horrible.

"Some 45 million liters of the poisoned spray was Agent Orange, which contains the toxic compound dioxin"
http://theconversation.com/agent-orange-exposed-how-u-s-chemical-warfare-in-vietnam-unleashed-a-slow-moving-disaster-84572

120Daze , 13 Apr 2018 14:36
Who needs facts when you've got opinions? Non more hypocritical than the British. Its what you get when you lie and distort though a willing press, you get found out and then nobody believes anything you say.anymore. The white helmets are a western funded and founded organisation, they are NOT independent they are NOT volunteers, The UK the US and the Dutch fund them to the tune of over $40 million. They are a propaganda dispensing outlet. The press shouldn't report anything they release because it is utterly unable to substantiate ANY of it, there hasn't been a western journalist in these areas for over 4 years so why do the press expect us to believe anything they print? Combine this with the worst and most incompetent Govt this country has seen for decades and all you have is a massive distraction from massive domestic troubles which the same govt has no answers too.
LiviaDrusilla -> Bangorstu , 13 Apr 2018 14:36
LOL are you having a larf?

The same organisation that receives millions of quid in funding from USAID?

Whose 'executive director' used to work for USAID?

Who have campaigned for 'no fly zones' (ie US bombing)?

Who are affiliated to the Iranian terrorist group MEK?

Who only happen to run hospitals in 'rebel' held areas?

You have a strange idea of 'politically neutral'. Your 'NGO' are fighting for an Islamist state. Enjoy them.

Dominique2 , 13 Apr 2018 14:32
https://www.theguardian.com/world/shortcuts/2013/sep/01/winston-churchill-shocking-use-chemical-weapons

""I am strongly in favour of using poisoned gas against uncivilised tribes," [Winston Churchill] declared in one secret memorandum."

The current condemnation by the international community and international law is good and needs enforcement. But no virtue signalling where there is none.

CaptTroyTempest -> StoneRoses , 13 Apr 2018 14:27
But we're still awaiting evidence that a chemical attack has been carried out in Douma, aren't we? And if an attack was carried out, by whom. But before these essential points are verified, you feel that a targeted military response is justified. Are you equally keen for some targeted military response for the use of chemical weapons, namely white phosphorus, in Palestine by the Israaeli military? Unlike Douma, the use of these chemical weapons in the occupied territories by the IDF's personnel is well documented. But we haven't attacked them yet. Funny that.
CMYKilla , 13 Apr 2018 14:26
Instead of "chemicals" why not just firebomb them - you know like we did to entire cities full of women and children in WW2?

Hamburg 27 July 1943 - 46,000 civilians killed in a firestorm
Kassel 22 October 1943 - 9,000 civilians killed 24,000 houses destroyed in a firestorm
Darmstadt 11 September 1944 - 8,000 civilians killed in a firestorm
Dresden 13/14th February - 25,000 civilians killed in a firestorm

Obviously we were fighting Nazism and hadn't actually been invaded - and he is fighting Wahhabism and has had major cities overrun...

Maybe if Assad burnt people to death rather than gassing them we would make a statue of him outside Westminster like the one of Bomber Harris?

Tom1982 , 13 Apr 2018 14:24
Remember the tearful Kuwaiti nurse with her heartrending story of Iraqi troops tipping premature babies out of their incubators after the invasion in 1990? The story was published in pretty much every major Western newspaper, massively increased public support for military intervention............................and turned out to be total bullshit.

Is it too much too ask that we try a bit of collective critical thinking and wait for hard evidence before blundering into a military conflict with Assad; and potentially Putin?

BlutoTheBruto , 13 Apr 2018 14:21
Didn't General Mattis quietly admit at there was no evidence for the alleged Sarin attacks last year by Assad?

http://www.newsweek.com/now-mattis-admits-there-was-no-evidence-assad-using-poison-gas-his-people-801542

Hmmmm.... call me skeptical for not believing it this time around.

AwkwardSquad , 13 Apr 2018 14:19
Well, this is the sort of stuff that the Israelis would be gagging for. They want Assad neutralised and they are assisting ISIS terrorists on the Golan Heights. They tend to their wounded and send them back across the border to fight Assad. What better than to drag the Americans, Brits and French into the ring to finish him off. Job done eh?

Are you sure you are not promoting an Israeli agenda here Jonathan?

Incidentantally what did we in the west do when the Iraqis were gassing the Iranians with nerve agents in the marshes of southern Iraq during the Iran Iraq War? Did we intervene then? No, we didn't we allowed it to happen.

I say stay out it.

dannymega -> fripouille , 13 Apr 2018 14:18
Come on frip, you have to admit there was absolutely no motive for Assad's forces to carry out this attack. Why do you think the Guardian and other main stream media outlets are not even considering the possibility the Jihadi rebels staged it to trigger western intervention? I know, I know.. it's all evil Assad killing his own people for no other reason than he likes butchering people... blah blah. The regime change agenda against Syria has been derailed, no amount of false flag attacks can change the facts on the ground.
Preshous , 13 Apr 2018 14:18
Tucker Carlson of Fox News has it nailed down....
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M28aYkLRlm0
ChairmanMayTseTung , 13 Apr 2018 14:16
More than 40 years after the US sprayed millions of litres of chemical agents to defoliate vast swathes of Vietnam and in the full knowledge it would be have a catastrophic effect on the health of the inhabitants of those area, Vietnam has by far the highest incidence of liver cancer on the planet.

Then more recently we have the deadly depleted uranium from US shells that innocent Iraqis are inhaling as shrill voices denounce Assad.

CodeNameTwiglet , 13 Apr 2018 14:15
The Syrian people are heroically resisting and defeating western imperialism. This "civil war" has been nothing but a war for Syrian resources waged by western proxies. So now, In desperation borne out of their impending defeat, the imperialists have staged a chemical attack in a last throw of the dice to gain popular support for an escalation in military intervention. Like military interventions of the past, it is being justified in the name of humanitarian intervention. But if we have a brief browse of history we can see that US & UK governments have brought only death, misery and destruction on the populations it was supposedly helping. Hands off Syria.

[Apr 21, 2018] In another development (probably to run with the Syria script) the UK announces it has a dossier that proves Russia was experimenting with delivering nerve agents from door handles.

Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

ChairmanMayTseTung , 13 Apr 2018 13:27

In another development (probably to run with the Syria script) the UK announces it has a dossier that proves Russia was experimenting with delivering nerve agents from door handles.

Not as hilarious as breathlessly closing a children's playground near the Skripal's days after the event for "contamination checks" even though it had been raining in the days in between (the narrative was presumably the dastardly Russian agents planned to kill a few innocent kids for good measure).

[Apr 21, 2018] Ruling Class Operatives Say the Darndest Things On Devils Known and Not

Notable quotes:
"... New York Times ..."
"... his deep conviction ..."
"... tired of trying to solve other people's problems in the Middle East ..."
Apr 21, 2018 | www.counterpunch.org

"Solving Other People's Problems in the Middle East"

Establishment journalists and politicos write and say the darndest things, advanced as common sense under the sway of reigning nationalist and imperial ideology. Take the New York Times ' chief White House correspondent Peter Baker. In a page-one "news analysis" last Sunday, Baker wrote the following about Donald Trump's recent missile strike on Syria:

"The strike brought home Mr. Trump's competing impulses when it comes to Syria -- on the one hand, his manful chest-thumping intended to demonstrate that he is the toughest one on the international block, and on the other, his deep conviction that American involvement in the Middle East since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, has been a waste of blood and treasure .He did little to reconcile those impulses with his retaliatory strike to punish the government of President Bashar al-Assad for a suspected chemical attack a week ago that killed dozens of people. But then again, he reflected the contradictions of an American public that is tired of trying to solve other people's problems in the Middle East ." (emphasis added).

The sheer tonnage of bullshit contained in this short passage is striking. Baker lacked the decency to note that (as everybody knows) Trump's missile spasm was intended to distract U.S. public attention from his troubled political situation at home. It was a transparent dog-wag that worked for a day or two.

[Apr 21, 2018] Macron as greedy neocon. His support of Douma false flag attack is related to selling weapons to Saudi monarchy

Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

RudolphS 13 Apr 2018 16:17

Most baffling is is French president Emmanuele Macron's fierce reaction. There's no other nation which has suffered so much from terrorist attacks as France. And yet now its president is determined to use his fighter planes as the de facto airforce for the the jihadi extremists. Macron went even as far as making his statements with the Saudi prince at his side, the leader of a country which is known for funding the jihadis!

Weird times.

Jay_Q123 -> RudolphS 13 Apr 2018 16:25

Macron just got back from a few days hanging on out with the Saudi Arabian elite, who have

  • been the most destructive force in the Syrian war and spreads terrorism all over the world
  • guaranteed to spend tens of billions on French weapons.

AndiMcDodle -> ManUpTheTree , 13 Apr 2018 14:51

Agreed Macron is so proud about the weapons Saudi Arabia bought of him. And strangely enough Saudi Arabia supports the ISIS head choppers in Syria, I think of a coincidence. And I didn't mention the gaz pipeline crossing Syria, that if Russia/Assad win, will be beyond the control of Europeans, a real bummer, given that Russia controls the supply east of Germany. I guess civilian death, is the only thing in the forefront of the France/UK/US preoccupations. Surely, they wouldn't condone civilians dying for geo-political reasons?
NapoleonXIV -> Richmar , 13 Apr 2018 14:48
Yes, I remember Rice, Cheney, Bush, and Rumsfeld telling the world that they had evidence that Saddam was hoarding WMD. I'm still waiting to hear what it was. Now M. Macron spouts the same ambiguous nonsense expecting us to take his word for it.

Trump publicly states that US troops are being withdrawn from Syria. The next thing you know, Assad is allegedly gassing civilians. That makes a whole lot of sense doesn't it? If there's a sure-fire way of making sure you're on the wrong end of a bit of American 'shock and awe,' it's gassing innocents. Assad must have a death wish; or so they'd have us believe. The more I read about this fiasco, the more I think David Icke is the most rational man on the planet.

Ziontrain -> rustledust74 , 13 Apr 2018 14:47
From Pinochet to Mobuto, Kagama and many more, I'd think you'd better to review what the policy of the west actually IS.

[Apr 21, 2018] But where is the incontrovertible proof that the regime is in fact responsible for the attack rather than 'rebel groups' now on the point of final defeat, who'd wish to draw in the major NATO powers

Western neoliberal governments lost the remnants of patina of legitimacy on international scene and now look like bloodthirsty predators, they always were.
Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

Labourist , 13 Apr 2018 14:46

But where is the incontrovertible proof that the regime is in fact responsible for the attack rather than 'rebel groups' now on the point of final defeat, who'd wish to draw in the major NATO powers? Why would the regime afford the US, France and UK the pretext to do one thing that'd undermine Assad's otherwise certain victory? The timing seems odd indeed while Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Israel act with impunity against minority populations. Each of the latter has form and interest the destruction of Syria in this proxy war.
comrade1 , 13 Apr 2018 14:50
Let me see if I have this right....

The UK thinks it's "highly likely" Assad is to blame for the chemical attack. France says it has evidence Assad is responsible but won't say what it is. US Secretary of Defence Mattis believes a chemical attack took place but says there's no evidence. And depending on the day of the week, Russia believes there was either no chemical attack or if there was then it was staged by the UK.

And for good measure we appear to be going headlong into war on the basis of all this.

SMKirov -> ID9265089 , 13 Apr 2018 14:46
The UN investigations concluded that the chemicals had come from Syrian Army stocks which there wasn't much doubt about to start with. Where they were less conclusive was the matter of who had deployed them given the capture of large stocks of munitions by the terrorists early in the war. On the basis of cui bono? it seems more likely that it was the terrorist side who sought to provoke Western intervention by staging chemical incidents rather than the Syrian Government who had little to gain and much to lose from the use of any kind of WMD.
ReLuke631 , 13 Apr 2018 14:45
We never learn.

First Blair holding onto an idiot's shirt tails to attack a Middle Eastern country based on hearsay and no coherent withdrawal policy. Now we have May and Macron holding the hands of an even bigger idiot whose populist thoughts change by the minute so no hope of any withdrawal plan.

Does May and her hawks (Gove, Johnson) really want to be compared with Trump, Kim, Putin, Assad, W Bush, Blair et al in the history books?

solidstae , 13 Apr 2018 14:45
The rebels in Syria have a history of using sarin, chlorine and mustard gas against troops and civilians. But Washington, London and Paris are completely dummy on this. Not a whisper. Rather straight to accusations and threats against the regime they have been trying to overthrow for years.

I don't know who did it. But I know who lies every time they take a breath if they consider it in their interests. Truth is the first casualty. I don't believe any of them.

irishinrussia , 13 Apr 2018 14:45
Noticeable that the Guardian live coverage provides Western refutations of Russia's claims of evidence regarding a staged false attack, but doesn't actually cover the evidence the Russians have provided - testimony from medical staff who claim to be witnesses. Now I'm not so stupid as to take these claims as gospel, the Russians are just as capable as anyone of finding a couple of fake or pressured witnesses. However the failure of the Western press to even elaborate on the evidence, even just to ridicule and debunk it, is suspicious.

[Apr 20, 2018] The Great Game Comes to Syria by Conn Hallinan

Apr 20, 2018 | www.counterpunch.org

An unusual triple alliance is emerging from the Syrian war, one that could alter the balance of power in the Middle East, unhinge the NATO alliance, and complicate the Trump administration's designs on Iran. It might also lead to yet another double cross of one of the region's largest ethnic groups, the Kurds.

However, the "troika alliance" -- Turkey, Russia and Iran -- consists of three countries that don't much like one another, have different goals, and whose policies are driven by a combination of geo-global goals and internal politics. In short, "fragile and complicated" doesn't even begin to describe it.

How the triad might be affected by the joint U.S., French and British attack on Syria is unclear, but in the long run the alliance will likely survive the uptick of hostilities.

But common ground was what came out of the April 4 meeting between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, and Russian President Vladimir Putin. Meeting in Ankara, the parties pledged to support the "territorial integrity" of Syria, find a diplomatic end to the war, and to begin a reconstruction of a Syria devastated by seven years of war. While Russia and Turkey explicitly backed the UN-sponsored talks in Geneva, Iran was quiet on that issue, preferring a regional solution without "foreign plans."

"Common ground," however, doesn't mean the members of the "troika" are on the same page.

Turkey's interests are both internal and external. The Turkish Army is currently conducting two military operations in northern Syria, Olive Branch and Euphrates Shield, aimed at driving the mainly Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) out of land that borders Turkey. But those operations are also deeply entwined with Turkish politics.

Erdogan's internal support has been eroded by a number of factors: exhaustion with the ongoing state of emergency imposed following the 2016 attempted coup, a shaky economy , and a precipitous fall in the value of the Turkish pound. Rather than waiting for 2019, Erdogan called for snap elections this past week and beating up on the Kurds is always popular with right-wing Turkish nationalists. Erdogan needs all the votes he can get to imlement his newly minted executive presidency that will give him virtually one-man rule.

To be part of the alliance, however, Erdogan has had to modify his goal of getting rid of Syrian President Bashar Assad and to agree -- at this point, anyhow -- to eventually withdraw from areas in northern Syria seized by the Turkish Army. Russia and Iran have called for turning over the regions conquered by the Turks to the Syrian Army.

Moscow's goals are to keep a foothold in the Middle East with its only base, Tartus, and to aid its long-time ally, Syria. The Russians are not deeply committed to Assad personally, but they want a friendly government in Damascus. They also want to destroy al-Qaeda and the Islamic State, which have caused Moscow considerable trouble in the Caucasus.

Russia also wouldn't mind driving a wedge between Ankara and NATO. After the U.S., Turkey has NATO's second largest army. NATO broke a 1989 agreement not to recruit former members of the Russian-dominated Warsaw Pact into NATO as a quid pro quo for the Soviets withdrawing from Eastern Europe. But since the Yugoslav War in 1999 the alliance has marched right up to the borders of Russia. The 2008 war with Georgia and 2014 seizure of the Crimea were largely a reaction to what Moscow sees as an encirclement strategy by its adversaries.

Turkey has been at odds with its NATO allies around a dispute between Greece and Cyprus over sea-based oil and gas resources , and it recently charged two Greek soldiers who violated the Turkish border with espionage. Erdogan is also angry that European Union countries refuse to extradite Turkish soldiers and civilians who he claims helped engineer the 2016 coup against him. While most NATO countries condemned Moscow for the recent attack on two Russians in Britain, the Turks pointedly did not .

Turkish relations with Russia have an economic side as well. Ankara want a natural gas pipeline from Russia, has broken ground on a $20 billion Russian nuclear reactor, and just shelled out $2.5 billion for Russia's S-400 anti-aircraft system.

The Russians do not support Erdogan's war on the Kurds and have lobbied for the inclusion of Kurdish delegations in negotiations over the future of Syria. But Moscow clearly gave the Turks a green light to attack the Kurdish city of Afrin last month, driving out the YPG that had liberated it from the Islamic State and Turkish-backed al-Qaeda groups. A number of Kurds charge that Moscow has betrayed them .

The question now is, will the Russians stand aside if the Turkish forces move further into Syria and attack the city of Manbij, where the Kurds are allied with U.S. and French forces? And will Erdogan's hostility to the Kurds lead to an armed clash among three NATO members?

Such a clash seems unlikely, although the Turks have been giving flamethrower speeches over the past several weeks. "Those who cooperate with terrorists organizations [the YPG] will be targeted by Turkey," says Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag said in a pointed reference to France's support for the Kurds. Threatening the French is one thing, picking a fight with the U.S. military quite another.

Of course, if President Trump pulls U.S. forces out of Syria, it will be tempting for Turkey to move in. While the "troika alliance" has agreed to Syrian "sovereignty," that won't stop Ankara from meddling in Kurdish affairs. The Turks are already appointing governors and mayors for the areas in Syria they have occupied.

Iran's major concern in Syria is maintaining a buffer between itself and a very aggressive alliance of the U.S., Israel and Saudi Arabia, which seems to be in the preliminary stages of planning a war against the second-largest country in the Middle East.

Iran is not at all the threat it has been pumped up to be. Its military is miniscule and talk of a so-called "Shiite crescent" -- Iran, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon -- is pretty much a western invention (although the term was dreamed up by the King of Jordan).

Tehran has been weakened by crippling sanctions and faces the possibility that Washington will withdraw from the nuclear accord and re-impose yet more sanctions. The appointment of National Security Advisor John Bolton, who openly calls for regime change in Iran, has to have sent a chill down the spines of the Iranians. What Tehran needs most of all is allies who will shield it from the enmity of the U.S., Israel and Saudi Arabia. In this regard, Turkey and Russia could be helpful.

Iran has modified its original goals in Syria of a Shiite-dominated regime by agreeing to a "non-sectarian character" for a post-war Syria. Erdogan has also given up on his desire for a Sunni-dominated government in Damascus.

War with Iran would be catastrophic, an unwinnable conflict that could destabilize the Middle East even more than it is now. It would, however, drive up the price of oil, currently running at around $66 a barrel. Saudi Arabia needs to sell its oil for at least $100 a barrel, or it will very quickly run of money. The on-going quagmire of the Yemen war, the need to diversify the economy, and the growing clamor by young Saudis -- 70 percent of the population -- for jobs requires lots of money, and the current trends in oil pricing are not going to cover the bills.

War and oil make for odd bedfellows . While the Saudis are doing their best to overthrow the Assad regime and fuel the extremists fighting the Russians, Riyadh is wooing Moscow to sign onto to a long-term OPEC agreement to control oil supplies. That probably won't happen -- the Russians are fine with oil at $50 to $60 a barrel -- and are wary of agreements that would restrict their right to develop new oil and gas resources. The Saudi's jihad on the Iranians has a desperate edge to it, as well it might. The greatest threat to the Kingdom has always come from within.

The rocks and shoals that can wreck alliances in the Middle East are too numerous to count, and the "troika" is riven with contradictions and conflicting interests. But the war in Syria looks as if it is coming to some kind of resolution, and at this point Iran, Russia and Turkey seem to be the only actors who have a script that goes beyond lobbing cruise missiles at people.

[Apr 20, 2018] The Syrian situation was made far worse by the USA / France and the UK arming extremist Islamic groups during the ' Arab Spring ' in an attempt to depose the legitimate ruler of a sovereign nation.

Notable quotes:
"... The best solution being that he defeats all rebel forces as quickly as possible. The UN Chemical Weapons people can then go in ( or even before ) and try to collect some evidence. ..."
"... It is all about oil and supremacy in the region. Since when has our government or that of any western Country - cared about their people. Canon fodder - that is what we are. ..."
Apr 20, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

Artusov , 13 Apr 2018 15:56

'.....Given Russia's presence, it would not be easy...... '

Understatement of the century. If you start bombing strategic military targets you are quite, likely to hit Russian planes and troops.

As I said yesterday - What is the point ? Assad ( helped by his ally Russia ) has all but won the war ( which makes his use of chemical weapons surprising / a big mistake ) - The best solution being that he defeats all rebel forces as quickly as possible. The UN Chemical Weapons people can then go in ( or even before ) and try to collect some evidence.

Meanwhile, the Saudis are bombing Yemeni children with UK manufactured bombs.

The Syrian situation was made far worse by the USA / France and the UK arming extremist Islamic groups during the ' Arab Spring ' in an attempt to depose the legitimate ruler of a sovereign nation.

We don't say much about China's interference in Tibet these days, do we ?

Or the effect of Agent Orange in the Vietnam War ?

MartinSilenus -> Norman_Finklesteen , 13 Apr 2018 15:50
"here are many, many notable historians who state the death toll as high as 135,000 "

The biggest single death toll in WWII was the low level firebombing of Tokyo, large areas of Japans capital city were wiped out. With houses as flammable as you can ever imagine, an unimaginably horror filled event. The Japanese death toll was around 100,000 dead. You are saying more died in Dresden?

"On this day, U.S. warplanes launch a new bombing offensive against Japan, dropping 2,000 tons of incendiary bombs on Tokyo over the course of the next 48 hours. Almost 16 square miles in and around the Japanese capital were incinerated, and between 80,000 and 130,000 Japanese civilians were killed in the worst single firestorm in recorded history."
https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/firebombing-of-tokyo

mudlark123 -> BoomersStealingMoney , 13 Apr 2018 15:50
It is all about oil and supremacy in the region. Since when has our government or that of any western Country - cared about their people. Canon fodder - that is what we are.
rockyrex -> LordThumpworthy , 13 Apr 2018 15:50
OK so let's attack Saudi for what they are doing in Yemen. And Myanmar for their behaviour. Then there's Mexico, where the cartels keep murdering people. Really, let's apply the same standards everywhere.

How will this proposed action change anything? The Syrians have hidden everything that matters, the Russians will get 90 minutes warning of the targets .... It's a PR exercise on the usual lines of "Something must be done .... this is something ..... "

[Apr 20, 2018] Russia has transferred forty Pantsir-S1 air defense systems to Syria' Air Defence

Apr 20, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

tayacase

, 13 Apr 2018 15:50
Russia has transferred forty Pantsir-S1 air defense systems to Syria' Air Defence.
This is the latest air defence technology (the system is in service since 2012) - a combined short to medium range surface-to-air missile and anti-aircraft artillery weapon system against aircrafts, helicopters, precision munitions, cruise missiles and UAVs.

https://southfront.org/russia-delivered-40-pantsir-s1-air-defense-systems-to-syria-state-media /
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pantsir-S1

[Apr 20, 2018] It is hard to be pro interventionist after the epical f up in Iraq and Libya and previous chemical weapons false flag staged by jihadists

Israeli's deep incursions in Syria and the bombing of military bases also used by Russian military have provided a lot of information about the capabilities and limitations of the Russian military technology deployed in Syria.
Apr 20, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

StephenDaedalus -> JackDowland , 13 Apr 2018 15:47

Sure, here's the UN OPCW investigation report which directly blames the Assad forces for chemical attacks. Take as much time as you need.

https://undocs.org/S/2016/738

I couldn't find the paragraph which directly blames Assad's forces.

I note it does refer (at para 44) to Assad's allegation that a video had been staged. It concludes that the patients on the video "appear relatively unaffected by the typical symptoms. No red eyes, tearing, paleness, sweating, cyanosis or breathing difficulties can be observed from the footage. The patients interviewed in the video show little or no signs of having been exposed to a toxic chemical".

This is also consistent with other documented attempts of video-making to trigger the western bombs.

Surely you can see why people might at least reserve judgment about the latest video emanating from Jaish al-Islam controlled territory?

LiviaDrusilla -> SummerPatch , 13 Apr 2018 15:47
As I've said , I consider the term 'putinbot' - infantile and indicative of a lack of logical argumentation as it is - as a compliment, since it appears to be code for those who retain the ability to think for themselves and not fall glumly for the latest official line.

since the OPCW proved it was Putin who tried to murder British civilians with nerve agents.

Actually, they proved no such thing, but in any case it's irrelevant to the discussion at hand.

BoomersStealingMoney -> thousandautumns , 13 Apr 2018 15:47
I would like to cargo the arm chair generals into the battlefield of Syria.

Let Asad deal with them.

Terry Haller , 13 Apr 2018 15:47
Personally I am uncertain what has happened regarding the chemical attack in Syria however it is pretty clear to me what has happened and continues to happen in Yemen and Palestine.
Fomalhaut88 , 13 Apr 2018 15:47
Send Dearest Jeremy to Damascus with one of his megaphones and a bunch of his most loyal.
I am not sure what he will yell down the megaphone, but whatever it is I am sure it will make him feel better about protesting, something.
Rumbero -> dannymega , 13 Apr 2018 15:47
so you have an answer for the Russian narrative but not for the British viewpoint.
Laughable and ridiculous. What source do you have for the Russian military's claim ?
Let me guess ? Some obscure blog site or RT?
OlivesNightie , 13 Apr 2018 15:46

The notion of inaction, of standing by and watching as Assad kills and kills and kills, racking up a death toll in Syria of 500,000

On May 12, 1996, Madeleine Albright defended UN sanctions against Iraq on a 60 Minutes segment in which Lesley Stahl asked her "We have heard that half a million children have died. I mean, that's more children than died in Hiroshima. And, you know, is the price worth it?" and Albright replied, "We think the price is worth it."'

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FbIX1CP9qr4

Kokkos -> dharps , 13 Apr 2018 15:46
And who presents the Summons to the United States for Vietnam....and the other countries,where they used chemicals.
BabylonianSheDevil03 -> grumpybrewer , 13 Apr 2018 15:46
From tomorrow the weather in some parts of the UK stops being an utter bastard and starts to look like spring. The sun will get its hat on, hip, hip, hip, hooray!
Go out and listen to the birds, look at the blossom. Lots of good in the world.
Xerxes2 , 13 Apr 2018 15:46
This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn't abide by our community standards . Replies may also be deleted. For more detail see our FAQs .
Haverer -> circuit , 13 Apr 2018 15:46
Yes of course. Russia could just cross over into Alaska and from there ithey can easily drive their tanks down through Canada to reach the US.
DZ76 -> DZ76 , 13 Apr 2018 15:46
Just in case anyone asks for an example of US diverging from Israeli objectives (I realise that I did not elucidate on that in my post), US air strikes have focused entirely on ISIS and have, up to now, left the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and Hezbollah alone. There's no doubt that the Americans are very closely tied to Israeli objectives, but they certainly aren't being controlled by a 'Zionist elite', America still fights for America. As I outlined above, it's really only the British government that doesn't appear to have anything even beginning to resemble an independent foreign policy.
pash meia -> harveybrown , 13 Apr 2018 15:46
so kets excuse putin and assad shall we based on a labour govt fuck up
gooner4thewin -> urbanegorrila , 13 Apr 2018 15:45
Corbyn has not been a proponent of boosting our military budget.
BoomersStealingMoney , 13 Apr 2018 15:45
Not a single terrorist attack on British soil has been inspired by Shiah Islam.

And yet we arm the Wahabis to dislodge the secular Asad.

Our government is crooked.

georgina45 -> Squadra , 13 Apr 2018 15:45
I watched RT for the first time last night and it was interesting.
But right now its like we are being ruled by lunatics. It is absolutely sickening. Quite literally some moron in the White House is tweeting, 'My bombs are bigger than yours' and 'The missiles are coming.' And they still let him in rule one of the most powerful countries on the Earth with a vast mass of WMD and Theresa May is trying reason with a fucking moron. Hey Guardian if Trump is talking like this my swearing is the least of our problems, so please don't moderate. We need someone to Moderate the madmen.
TheKingOfHate -> mikew67 , 13 Apr 2018 15:45
How do you compare a serial killer with twenty kills to one with one kills?

Why, they're both serial killers.

/That's/ how we compare the blood on our hands to those drenched to our shoulders.

Sceptical Walker -> NHSmonami , 13 Apr 2018 15:45
UK
ID3555673 , 13 Apr 2018 15:45
Whatever the strategic complications are that would prevent this, Assad deserves a Tomahawk enema.
gooner4thewin , 13 Apr 2018 15:45
hallelujah - the Russians have decided to allow the UN chemical weapons inspectors to now visit the site. Of course they vetoed it initially because out of a sense of tidiness, they wanted to clean up the place before guests came.
billhicks00 , 13 Apr 2018 15:44
The red line is the use of chemical weapons it seems. Bullets, conventional weaponry and starvation are OK.
Swilkerin -> dharps , 13 Apr 2018 15:44
Overthrowing the B'aathist regime would also cause chaos. You have several proxy wars going on in Syria. Having jihadists groups with links to Saudi/ Iran etc fill the void is hardly a great prospect. We've just seen the back of ISIS after all.
dannymega -> Rumbero , 13 Apr 2018 15:44
Perhaps the place they visited to check if an attack happened was the wrong place, who knows? Does seem rather perverse though to predict an impending gas attack and then go and carry it out yourself.
junglecitizen -> LeftOrRightSameShite , 13 Apr 2018 15:44

We, along with the US, France and Gulf states have supported, armed and trained "rebels" in Syria the whole time. We've had, as have others, special forces operating inside Syria


So, there would never be rebellions against totalitarian dictators if it weren't for the CIA and MI6.

I don't buy this. It's very convenient if you're an anti-war person who doesn't want to face an ethical dilemma. But it's not real.

LordThumpworthy , 13 Apr 2018 15:44
This is a sensible article. Funny how those shouting abuse offer NO alternative and would rather turn a blind eye to children being gassed, than be part of a country that has the moral fibre to stand up to this butchery.
pash meia , 13 Apr 2018 15:44
st petersburgh on double bubble it seems.
Guimard -> Succe55 , 13 Apr 2018 15:44
They been doing for years , there is nothing new about it .
They just got 'better ' at it .
SummerPatch -> LiviaDrusilla , 13 Apr 2018 15:44
Sergei, you are the one with imagination. I wonder why the putinbots have gone quiet about salibusry since the OPCW proved it was Putin who tried to murder British civilians with nerve agents.
NHSmonami -> dharps , 13 Apr 2018 15:44
Evidence that would not stand up in court.
oreilly62 , 13 Apr 2018 15:44
Stop the conflict,here comes Freedland to save the world.
pash meia -> Krautolivier , 13 Apr 2018 15:44
better the devil than allah looking at the state of the islsmic world maybe?
but meanwhike lets excuse putin and asdad...
you are jeremy corbyn and i donate my 5 pounds to charity
mudlark123 -> RLB2808 , 13 Apr 2018 15:44
Thanks Colonel Blimp. I do, however, entirely agree with you.
Blackdawn , 13 Apr 2018 15:43
If it came to it, i wouldn't fight. Story is.. ordinary people head to the front the elite, politicians and royals head to their bunkers.
Celtiberico , 13 Apr 2018 15:42

The Syrian Negotiation Commission has called for action to deter Assad from killing civilians. What they envisage is that each time Assad launches a deadly attack on noncombatants, allied forces reply by taking out one of the strategic assets he uses to kill civilians. It could be an airfield, it could be a command centre. If the target were aircraft, that would simultaneously inflict a cost on the regime and deprive it of the means of dropping its barrel bombs and toxic, yellow cylinders. The objective would be to make Assad pay a price for killing his own people, a price he has not paid until now. Eventually, or so runs the hope, he would be deterred.

That kind of reminds me of when Ahmed Chalabi and the Iraqi National Congress were explaining how to get rid of Saddam without plunging Iraq into mayhem and destabilising the wider region.

[Apr 20, 2018] Skripal and Douma incidents were preceded by extremely intense diplomatic activity between Saudi Arabia, Washington, Paris and London this year, with multiple top level visits between capitals, is presumably supposed to be coincidence.

Apr 20, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

dumbwaiter -> Kevin Watson, 13 Apr 2018 15:50

I'm going to post a comment by another user posted yesterday as he said it far more eloquently than I could

R Reddington InterestedReader2 1d ago

Your just another armchair warrior.

So you think going to war is a good idea well you first then and dont forget your flack jacket and rifle.

The media onslaught has moved past the attack in Salisbury by a "weapon of mass destruction" (quoting Theresa May) which could only be Russian, except that was untrue, and was extremely deadly, except that was untrue too. It now focuses on an attack by chemical weapons in Douma which "could only be" by the Russian-backed Assad regime, except there is no evidence of that either, and indeed neutral verified evidence from Douma is non-existent. The combination of the two events is supposed to have the British population revved up by jingoism, and indeed does have Tony Blair and assorted Tories revved up, to attack Syria and potentially to enter conflict with Russia in Syria.

The "Russian" attack in Salisbury is supposed to negate the "not our war" argument, particularly as a British policeman was unwell for a while. Precisely what is meant to negate the "why on earth are we entering armed confrontation with a nuclear power" argument, I do not know.

Saudi Arabia has naturally offered facilities to support the UK, US and France in their attempt to turn the military tide in Syria in favour of the Saudi sponsored jihadists whom Assad had come close to defeating. That the Skripal and Douma incidents were preceded by extremely intense diplomatic activity between Saudi Arabia, Washington, Paris and London this year, with multiple top level visits between capitals, is presumably supposed to be coincidence.

I am not a fan of Assad any more than I was a fan of Saddam Hussein. But the public now understand that wars for regime change in Muslim lands have disastrous effects in dead and maimed adults and children and in destroyed infrastructure; our attacks unleash huge refugee waves and directly cause terrorist attacks here at home. There is no purpose in a military attack on Syria other than to attempt to help the jihadists overthrow Assad. There is a reckless disregard for evidence base on the pretexts for all this. Indeed, the more the evidence is scrutinised, the dodgier it seems. Finally there is a massive difference between mainstream media narrative around these events and a deeply sceptical public, as shown in social media and in comments sections of corporate media websites.

The notion that Britain will take part in military action against Syria with neither investigation of the evidence nor a parliamentary vote is worrying indeed. Without Security Council authorisation, any such action is illegal in any event. It is worth noting that the many commentators who attempt to portray Russia's veto of a Syria resolution as invalid, fail to note that last week, in two separate 14 against 1 votes, the USA vetoed security council resolutions condemning Israeli killings of unarmed demonstrators in Gaza.

The lesson the neo-cons learnt from the Iraq war is not that it was disastrous. It was only disastrous for the dead and maimed Iraqis, our own dead and maimed servicemen, and those whose country was returned to medievalism. It was a great success for the neo-cons, they made loads of money on armaments and oil. The lesson the neo-cons learned was not to give the public in the West any time to mount and organise opposition. Hence the destruction of Libya was predicated on an entirely false "we have 48 hours to prevent the massacre of the population of Benghazi" narrative. Similarly this latest orchestrated "crisis" is being followed through into military action at a blistering pace, as the four horsemen sweep by, scything down reason and justice on the way.

[Apr 20, 2018] How neoliberal MSM twist facts

Apr 20, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

Ruby4 , 13 Apr 2018 14:15

Labour calls for the attack on Douma to be "fully investigated". That sounds unarguable. But then what? Jeremy Corbyn issued the same call after the chemical attack that killed at least 74 at Khan Sheikhoun a year ago: demanding there be a "UN investigation and those responsible be held to account". The UN duly investigated and in October concluded unambiguously that the Assad regime had used sarin gas. But Corbyn greeted that verdict with silence.

The report that Mr Freedland provides a link to, actually says:

"5. While the OPCW Fact-Finding Mission in the Syrian Arab Republic works to establish the facts surrounding allegations of the use of toxic chemicals for hostile purposes in the country, it is not mandated to reach conclusions about attributing responsibility for chemical weapons use. 1 Following a determination by the FactFinding Mission that a specific incident in the Syrian Arab Republic involved or likely involved the use of chemicals as weapons, the Mechanism conducts an investigation to identify, to the greatest extent feasible, the perpetrators, organizers, sponsors or those otherwise involved. In conducting its investigation, the Mechanism relies on findings of the Fact-Finding Mission regarding the use of chemicals as weapons in each incident and pursues a rigorous independent examination of the available information surrounding such use so as to identify, to the greatest extent feasible, those responsible."

It doesn't appear to be claiming to be concluding "unambiguously that the Assad regime had used sarin gas." Am I missing something here?

Mr Freedland's allegation that "Corbyn greeted that verdict with silence" is highly suspect:

"RT:Today, Moscow says it has evidence that rebels have used sarin gas. Earlier Britain said that Assad forces were behind the chemical attack. But why didn't Britain and the US come forward with the same sort of hard evidence that Russia has come forward with?

JC: That's an interesting question. I can't speak for the British or the US governments, but they made these allegations about the use of chemical weapons – and there are apparently stocks of chemical weapons being held in Syria, which may well have fallen into opposition hands, or may still be in government hands, or maybe both – but the assertion was made that they had been used. But no hard evidence came up, and indeed, there was a great deal of skepticism surrounding the evidence that was never presented. And the Russian evidence today appears much stronger, and they said they were going to put that evidence in the hands of the United Nations - that has got to be a good thing. However, proving or not proving this doesn't end the crisis, there has to be the rapid resumption of talks by Geneva too, all parties must be involved – including Iran. If we're to bring about a settlement, there's got to be involvement of Iran, as well as all the different parties in Syria."

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/syria-chemical-weapons-evidence-926 /

[Apr 20, 2018] Stench of hypocrisy British 'war on terror' strategic ties with radical Islam by John Wight

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... British governments, both Labour and Conservative, have, in pursuing the so-called 'national interest' abroad, colluded for decades with radical Islamic forces, including terrorist organizations. They have connived with them, worked alongside them and sometimes trained and financed them, in order to promote specific foreign policy objectives. Governments have done so in often desperate attempts to maintain Britain's global power in the face of increasing weakness in key regions of the world, being unable to unilaterally impose their will and lacking other local allies. Thus the story is intimately related to that of Britain's imperial decline and the attempt to maintain influence in the world. ..."
"... But whereas Sharif Hussein was a follower of orthodox Sunni Islam, Ibn Saud adhered to the radical doctrine of Wahhabism, which Winston Churchill was moved to describe as " bloodthirsty ..."
"... British support for the mujahideen, married to the huge support provided by Washington, was indispensable in the eventual success of these self-styled 'holy warriors' in taking control of a country that had embraced modernity and turning it into a failed state mired in religious oppression, brutality, backwardness and poverty. ..."
"... Britain, along with the US, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, covertly supported the resistance to defeat the Soviet occupation of the country. Military, financial and diplomatic backing was given to Islamist forces which, while forcing a Soviet withdrawal, soon organized themselves into terrorist networks ready to strike Western targets. ..."
"... Islamic resistance ..."
"... We trust the Western leaders are prepared for the enormous beneficial possibilities that could just possibly open up if the Afghan rebellion were to succeed. ..."
"... Manchester, England is home to the largest Libyan community in Britain, and there is strong evidence to suggest that when the Libyan uprising broke out MI6 facilitated the ability of Libyan Islamists in Britain to travel to Libya to participate in the fighting. Among them was Salman Abedi, who it is thought received military training in the country before being allowed to return to the UK thereafter. ..."
"... This brings us on to Syria and, as with Libya, the question of how so many British Muslims have been able to travel from the UK to Syria via Turkey to take part in the anti-Assad insurgency since 2011? It also brings into sharp focus a policy that has veered between the ludicrous and the reckless. ..."
"... As for the recklessness of Britain's actions in Syria, look no further than the country's recent participation in the illegal missile strikes that were carried out in conjunction with the US and France, justified on the basis of as yet unproven allegations that Syrian government forces had carried out a chemical weapons attack on Douma, just outside Damascus. The only beneficiaries of such actions by the Western powers are Salafi-jihadist groups such as ISIS (whom it was later reported took advantage of the missile strike to mount a short-lived offensive), Al-Nusra and Jaysh al-Islam. ..."
"... The latter of those groups, Jaysh al-Islam, is a Saudi proxy. It was the dominant group in Douma and throughout Eastern Ghouta until the district's liberation by the Syrian Army and its allies with Russian support. ..."
Apr 20, 2018 | www.rt.com

Britain's strategic relationship with radical Islam goes back decades and continues to this day. There is no more foul a stench than the stench of hypocrisy, and there is no more foul a hypocrisy than the British government painting Bashar al-Assad as a monster when in truth he and the Syrian people have been grappling with a twin-headed monster in the shape of Salafi-jihadi terror and Western imperialism. Both are committed to destroying Syria as an independent, non-sectarian state, and both are inextricably linked.

Author and journalist Mark Curtis charts in detail the contours of this history in his book 'Secret Affairs: Britain's Collusion with Radical Islam':

" British governments, both Labour and Conservative, have, in pursuing the so-called 'national interest' abroad, colluded for decades with radical Islamic forces, including terrorist organizations. They have connived with them, worked alongside them and sometimes trained and financed them, in order to promote specific foreign policy objectives. Governments have done so in often desperate attempts to maintain Britain's global power in the face of increasing weakness in key regions of the world, being unable to unilaterally impose their will and lacking other local allies. Thus the story is intimately related to that of Britain's imperial decline and the attempt to maintain influence in the world. "

As far back as the First World War, when the Middle East began to assume strategic importance in the capitals of Western imperial and colonial powers, the British ruling class went out of its way to identify and recruit loyal local proxies in pursuit of its regional objectives. Britain's relationship with the Arab tribal chief, Ibn Saud, who would go on to establish Saudi Arabia in the early 1930s, began in 1915 with the Darin Pact, demarcating the territory then controlled by Saud as a British protectorate.

The following year, the Arab Revolt against the Ottomans erupted. Begun and inspired by Saud's fierce rival, Sharif Hussein, head of the Hashemite Arab tribe, the revolt was heavily bankrolled and supported by the British – a period immortalized in the exploits of British military agent T E Lawrence, known to the world as Lawrence of Arabia.

But whereas Sharif Hussein was a follower of orthodox Sunni Islam, Ibn Saud adhered to the radical doctrine of Wahhabism, which Winston Churchill was moved to describe as " bloodthirsty " and " intolerant ." Regardless, when it came to its imperial interests there was no tiger upon whose back the British ruling class was not willing to ride during this period, and which, as events have proved, it has not been willing to ride since.

The most egregious example of this policy, one that continues to have ramifications today, was the support provided by the UK to the Afghan mujahideen in the late 1970s and 1980s. The insurgency's objective was the overthrow of Kabul's secular and left-leaning government, whose crime in the eyes of the Islamist insurgency's US and UK sponsors was that it had embraced the social and economic model of Moscow rather than Washington during the first Cold War.

British support for the mujahideen, married to the huge support provided by Washington, was indispensable in the eventual success of these self-styled 'holy warriors' in taking control of a country that had embraced modernity and turning it into a failed state mired in religious oppression, brutality, backwardness and poverty.

Mark Curtis again:

" Britain, along with the US, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, covertly supported the resistance to defeat the Soviet occupation of the country. Military, financial and diplomatic backing was given to Islamist forces which, while forcing a Soviet withdrawal, soon organized themselves into terrorist networks ready to strike Western targets. "

While Washington's primary role in channeling military and financial support to the Afghan mujahideen, known as Operation Cyclone , may until have succeeded in overshadowing London's role in this dirty war, declassified British government cabinet papers which were made public in 2010 and reported in the UK media make grim reading.

They reveal that three weeks after Soviet forces arrived in Afghanistan at the request of the Afghan government in Kabul, struggling to deal with an insurgency that had broken out in the countryside, the Thatcher government was planning to supply military aid to the " Islamic resistance ." A confidential government memo provides a chilling insight into the insanity that passed for official policy: " We trust the Western leaders are prepared for the enormous beneficial possibilities that could just possibly open up if the Afghan rebellion were to succeed. "

It will be recalled that out of the ensuing collapse of Afghanistan emerged the Taliban, under whose rule the country was turned into a vast militant jihadist school and training camp. Many of the most notorious Islamist terrorists began their careers there, fighting the Soviets and then later broadening out their activities to other parts of the region and wider world. In this regard, Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda loom large.

Other notorious names from the world of Salafi-jihadism for whom Afghanistan proved indispensable include the Jordanian Abu al-Zarqawi, who founded Al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) during the US-UK occupation, an organization that would over time morph into ISIS.

Abdelhakim Belhaj and other Libyan Islamists cut their jihadist teeth in Afghanistan in the 1980s. Returning to Libya, they formed the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG) in the eastern city of Benghazi. Though the group may have been disbanded in 2010, having failed to topple Gaddafi despite repeated attempts to assassinate the Libyan leader with, it's been claimed , the support of Britain's MI6, former members of the LIFG, including Belhaj, were important actors in the 2011 Libyan uprising.

By way of a reminder, the uprising in Libya started in Benghazi and would not have succeeded without the air support it received from NATO. Britain's then prime minister, David Cameron, was key in pushing for that air support and the sanction of the UN under the auspices of Security Council Resolution 1973. Though protecting civilians was central in wording of this UNSC resolution, it was shamefully distorted to justify regime change, culminating in Gaddafi's murder by the 'rebels.'

Staying with the LIFG, in the wake of the Manchester suicide-bomb attack in May 2017, which left 23 people dead and 500 injured, the fact that the bomber, a young Libyan by the name of Salman Abedi, was the son of a former member of the LIFG, did not receive anything like the media attention it should have at the time.

Manchester, England is home to the largest Libyan community in Britain, and there is strong evidence to suggest that when the Libyan uprising broke out MI6 facilitated the ability of Libyan Islamists in Britain to travel to Libya to participate in the fighting. Among them was Salman Abedi, who it is thought received military training in the country before being allowed to return to the UK thereafter.

This brings us on to Syria and, as with Libya, the question of how so many British Muslims have been able to travel from the UK to Syria via Turkey to take part in the anti-Assad insurgency since 2011? It also brings into sharp focus a policy that has veered between the ludicrous and the reckless.

Emblematic of the former was ex-prime minister David Cameron's claim , which he made during a 2015 Commons debate over whether the Royal Air Force should engage in air strikes against ISIS in Syria, that fighting as part of the Syrian were 70,000 moderates.

As for the recklessness of Britain's actions in Syria, look no further than the country's recent participation in the illegal missile strikes that were carried out in conjunction with the US and France, justified on the basis of as yet unproven allegations that Syrian government forces had carried out a chemical weapons attack on Douma, just outside Damascus. The only beneficiaries of such actions by the Western powers are Salafi-jihadist groups such as ISIS (whom it was later reported took advantage of the missile strike to mount a short-lived offensive), Al-Nusra and Jaysh al-Islam.

The latter of those groups, Jaysh al-Islam, is a Saudi proxy. It was the dominant group in Douma and throughout Eastern Ghouta until the district's liberation by the Syrian Army and its allies with Russian support.

Given the deep and longstanding ties between London and Riyadh; given the fact, reported towards the end of 2017, that British military personnel were embedded in a training role with Saudi forces in Yemen; given the news that a British special forces sergeant was killed in northern Syria at the end of March this year while embedded with the Kurds, revealing for the first time that British troops were operating in the country on the ground – given all that, the question of who else British special forces and military personnel may be embedded with in Syria is legitimate.

In the context of the British state's long and sordid history when it comes to riding the back of radical Islam in pursuit of its strategic objectives, readers will doubtless draw their own conclusions.

Read more

John Wight has written for newspapers and websites across the world, including the Independent, Morning Star, Huffington Post, Counterpunch, London Progressive Journal, and Foreign Policy Journal. He is also a regular commentator on RT and BBC Radio. John is currently working on a book exploring the role of the West in the Arab Spring. You can follow him on Twitter @JohnWight1

[Apr 19, 2018] The biggest damage from the strikes on Syria was to the credibility of the US, French and Airstrip One governments. In the days of dubya at least some effort was put into the false flags

Apr 19, 2018 | www.unz.com

RobinG , April 19, 2018 at 4:22 am GMT

More from Douma, with Pearson Sharp -

OAN'S PEARSON SHARP REFUTES MSM REPORTS OF ALLEGED SYRIAN CHEMICAL ATTACK

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iD9C9koRmro&feature=youtu.be

WhiteWolf , April 19, 2018 at 4:23 am GMT
The biggest damage from the strikes on Syria was to the credibility of the US, French and Airstrip One governments. In the days of dubya at least some effort was put into the false flags.
Carlton Meyer , Website April 19, 2018 at 4:30 am GMT
Great article, except the USA did not "acquire the Philippine Islands", it invaded! The Syrian disaster is best explained by a Columbia University professor, who was mistakenly booked on MSNBC, as Jimmy Dore explains:

Bombshell Professor Stuns MSNBC Panel On Syria - YouTube

[Apr 19, 2018] Effectiveness of anti cruse missiles weapons: 47 of the 71 intercepts they claim were done by modern Pantsir and Buk systems that Syria purchased around 2010.

Notable quotes:
"... The Russians have clearly prepared for such an attack ever since the Shayrat strike the very powerful Russian radars in Syria are capable of tracking any flying object and the Syrian SAM batteries are networked into that system and are fed that radar data in real time ..."
"... As for the Pantsir yes this point defense system is the perfect tool to shoot down cruise missiles it is the successor of the Tor SAM system that was designed specifically to shoot down T-hawks ..."
"... The older SAMs did not perform badly according to the Russian MoD assessment the S125 is a 1950s era system that the Serbs used to down two F117s and an F16 much more difficult targets than a T-hawk ..."
Apr 19, 2018 | www.unz.com

Zogby , April 18, 2018 at 7:45 pm GMT

In case people missed it, The Russian MOD published more detailed statistics about the attack which can be found here

http://tass.com/defense/1000148

If taken at face value, one detail that stands out is that the Russians' original boast that the missile attack was thwarted by "old Soviet-era air defense" is not true. 47 of the 71 intercepts they claim were done by modern Pantsir and Buk systems that Syria purchased around 2010. The older systems had noticeably worse performance than the modern systems.

The other interesting tidbit there is that the Russian General claims that "the survey of this and other facilities revealed neither this number of ammunition fragments nor the corresponding number of craters". In other words, as FB states above, that even though 25 missiles hypothetically got through in the attacks on Barzeh and Djaramani, the damage on the ground does not correspond to that many missiles.

FB , April 18, 2018 at 1:36 pm GMT

@The Scalpel

' I don't believe that "the fix was in" because the runways of major military airports were targeted. There was no guarantee that the Pantsir and Buk's would be as effective as they were. I don't see Putin happily agreeing to have those airport runways put out of commission. a bit of deconfliction, yes, a total charade, no '

I agree with this on the basis of sound logic. There is no way that we can know the facts about what kind of communuication and coordination [if any] took place behind the scenes. But we have a lot of inconsistencies in the US narrative first we were told that eight targets were going to be hit then, post facto, it was just three.

One of the sites the Barzeh research center in Damascus area was supposedly hit 76 times this on an area of about one acre [half a hectare...5,000 square meters]. Looking at high quality pictures of the site after the attack it is clear that adjacent buildings only meters from the targeted site are undamaged as are light poles surrounding the whole complex as well as stands of pine trees again only meters away

The idea that 76 450kg high explosive warheads detonated here is visibly absurd and is quite easy to analyze technically using accepted and authoritative engineering methods for explosive effects

As I have done on my comment on another thread

I consider it proven beyond doubt that there is no chance whatsoever that 76 missiles hit that site I doubt it would even be one tenth of that

And it is also logical to ask why would you even launch 76 missiles on a one acre complex that has three buildings a single T-hawk can take out a building or even a ship as seen on the pentagon show off video below

The answer is obvious of course no military professional would send 76 missiles on one small target that is simply bullshit

So that brings us to the next logical question if they did not send 76 missiles at Barzeh where did they go ?

Well that's what makes the story of airfields targeted but the missiles intercepted believable

Let's remember we are dealing with Proven Liars here everybody knows that recetly Phil Giraldi had an article here titled 'Liars Lying About Everything '

Not to mention that Robert Fisk has now blown the Douma 'chemical attack' story out of the water

Philip Owen , Website April 18, 2018 at 3:29 pm GMT
The few pictures I've seen of interception attempts were all too high in the sky to be targetting a TLAM or a Storm Shadow which are ground following missiles. They need to fly high enough to avoid power lines but that's it. (Apparently in Iraq 1, hitting power lines was the main mechanism by which they and most lost US Marine Corps helicopters were destroyed ).
exiled off mainstreet , April 18, 2018 at 4:39 pm GMT
The professional military people knew what was at stake in limiting the damage engendered by the war crime engaged in to placate the neocon power structure. Since armageddon was at stake, even according to Mattis's own statements, he apparently was able to rein Trump in to some degree, according to this contribution and more clearly from some other reports. We now also have increasing proof that the "chemical weapons" thing was a provocation, though the yankee regime's worldwide propaganda wurlitzer keeps playing the same nihilist song. I agree with others who have concluded that if Mattis is eliminated, that is when we will have to worry. Presumably, for now, since the normal secrecy is combined with a laudable profound survival instinct, the military will keep a lid on any investigations this generates. If not, as Whitney has indicated, we are in deep shit.
FB , April 18, 2018 at 4:41 pm GMT
@Philip Owen

Quick question Tampon Phil

What exactly do you know about the flight characteristics of cruise missiles ?

Over on the other thread you first tried to argue that the Barzeh site I discussed in my technical analysis was not the site of the missile strike

Then when I provided a sat image released by the pentagon and published in newspapers around the world confirming definitively that the site I analyzed in my original comment was indeed the site of the missile strike you said this

' I didn't say it was a fake picture. I said it was a demolition site. The same site being demolished as a conjecture. The best alternative at the moment is that the payloads were not 450 kg '

I then pointed out to you the physical fact of flight that removing 450 kg from the nose of a winged cruise missile would shift its center of gravity in the aft direction and make the missile unflyable

Not being able to argue with the laws of physics you then suggested that the 450 kg warhead was replaced by an equal weight with less explosive power since we had already established that the lack of damage to nearby structures was inconsistent with 76 claimed T-hawk hits on that small site

At which point I mentioned that your statements were on a level with the Prince Charles infamous 'tampon' phone call hence your new nickname Tampon Phil

Now here you are again just asking for more punishment

Ok as a start you may wish to review my technical discussion of the T-hawk flight characteristics on the 800 lb Gorilla thread

You may also wish to consult a topographical map of Syria to see some of the mountains that these cruise missiles would have to fly over to reach those inland targets

You will note the north to south mountain chain along the coast including the Anti-Lebanese Mountains that rise to 10,000 ft

My discussion of the T-hawk technical characteristics in that link above includes such crucial parameter as wing loading and thrust to weight ratio which determine this flight vehicle's climb rate and turn rate

' The few pictures I've seen of interception attempts were all too high in the sky to be targetting a TLAM or a Storm Shadow which are ground following missiles.

They need to fly high enough to avoid power lines but that's it '

And how do they get over those mountains Tampon Phil ?

Are they ground following there too ?

And also please let us know the scaling method you used to determine the height of those missiles from photos that would be helpful

FB , April 18, 2018 at 10:49 pm GMT
@Zogby

Thanks for the Tass article link

Yes there is no question that the US would have targeted Syrian airfields apparently a few did get through at one airfield but the others were fully rejected

Laymen who know nothing about aircraft or missiles do not understand the complexities and detail involved they simply accept the brochure 'information' presented on wikipedia and such about the capabilities of such flight vehicles

This does not shed any light on a fascinating and important subject important because now we have had some air combat between US and Nato airpower [Ship, sub and air launched cruise missiles vs. Russian air defenses]

Clearly the Russians won there was not a single death on the Syrian side the US did destroy a few buildings most notably the Barzeh research center in the Damascus area

We can tell the Russians won this round because the US is claiming completely ridiculous stuff that they launched 76 T-hawks with a combined TNT tonnage of nearly 40 tons yet little pine shrubs standing 20 feet away are completely intact

I mean how stupid ?

Clearly the US is claiming such a high number of attacks on the three buildings that they did hit because they failed to hit those airfields and we know that they failed to hit those airfields because if they did we would have satellite imagery being boastfully released

You can tell as much by the information that is withheld as you can by the information they give out

Now for some basic technical facts cruise missiles are not hard to shoot down once they are spotted but the hard part is spotting them because they are small and thus do not bounce back strong radar reflections

They can fly close to terrain although this is not always the case as I have explained previously and depends on the ingress route and the type of terrain along that flight path ie if it is required to fly over mountainous terrain it must fly quite high

In 1999 the Serbs shot down a number T-hawks with their 1950s era Soviet equipment here is the remains of one T-hawk airframe in the Belgrade Aviation Museum

Once spotted on radar the T-hawks and similar subsonic cruise missiles are sitting ducks they have no means of evading missile shots either from an air to air missile launched from a fighter jet or a surface to air missile launched from an air defense battery

A fighter jet relies on a radar warning receiver to alert the crew that it has been targeted by a missile shot and the crew can instantly commence evasive maneuver which is basically going into a steep banked turn so as to break radar lock and evade the missile shot

Cruise missiles have no such RWR and it would be pointless to equipment with such since they have very poor turning performance

This is due to their very high wing loading which is the ratio of wing area to aircraft weight a T-hawk weighs about 3,000 lb but has a wing area of only about 10 square feet for a wing loading of 300 lb/ft^2

That is about three times as high as a passenger jet's wing loading and as much as five times higher than a fighter jet

Think of wing loading and how it relates to maneuverability by considering a person carrying a backpack if that person is running and they need to change course having that extra weight on their back will not let them zigzag like a runner carrying no weight

The same is true for climb performance think of carrying 100 lb in your backpack and climbing up a set of stairs

The physical laws of flight performance are based on Newtonian Mechanics and cannot be argued with

The thrust to weight ratio of a cruise missile is about comparable to that of a passenger jet the thrust of the T-hawks Williams turbofan engine is about 700 lb against a weight of 3,000 lb that is less than 0.25 thrust to weight

A powerful fighter like an F15 will have a thrust to weight ratio of close to unity or even above ie it's engine thrust is actually equal to or greater than its weight and the airplane can thus climb straight up like a rocket

So the key in defending against subsonic cruise missiles which fly at about the same speed as passenger jet, about 500 mph [800 km/hr] is to pick them up on radar

The Russians have clearly prepared for such an attack ever since the Shayrat strike the very powerful Russian radars in Syria are capable of tracking any flying object and the Syrian SAM batteries are networked into that system and are fed that radar data in real time

We also saw in some of those missile intercept videos near the Damascus airport that Syrian jets were taking off and landing this is because the jets would use their onboard radar to find the cruise missiles and data link that info back to the SAM batteries

A fighter is easily capable of taking down a cruise missile with an AA shot also but this all comes down to pilot skill and training something which the SyAAF may not be dealing with on a regular basis considering their focus on the fight against ground targets in Jihadist areas

As for the Pantsir yes this point defense system is the perfect tool to shoot down cruise missiles it is the successor of the Tor SAM system that was designed specifically to shoot down T-hawks

The older SAMs did not perform badly according to the Russian MoD assessment the S125 is a 1950s era system that the Serbs used to down two F117s and an F16 much more difficult targets than a T-hawk

The S200 is a huge missile with a 350 km range exceeded only by the latest S400 long range missile introduced into service only a couple of years ago

It flies extremely fast 2,500 m/s which is about Mach 8 it is even faster than the new S400 missiles which fly at 2,000 m/s by comparison the USN Raytheon SM6 air defense missile used on Aegis missile ships flies only at M3.5 about 1,000 m/s

The high speed of the S200 is actually its disadvantage against a slow moving target like a cruise missile the laws of physics tell us that the faster the vehicle is flying, the larger its turn radius will be thus the big S200 is not going to do well against cruise missiles this is not surprising

Overall the Russian MoD version of events is certainly way more credible than the US version which is full of holes

[Apr 19, 2018] Trump's Missile Fiasco: Did the Pentagon collaborate with Moscow on which targets to hit? by Mike Whitney

Looks like it was all about Turkey. "Turkey seems to me to be the swing state here. You cannot isolate Russia without Turkey. Not only do they uncork themselves form the Black Sea , there will be no NATO fodder with casualties that no one cares about. Turkey is a big chunk of NATO. This is to sy nothing about trade. Sanction sound nice and dandy in the US, but in Turkey it wrecks their economy."
Notable quotes:
"... Suffice it to say, that the information from these US-funded organizations is invariably unreliable. Their sole task is to create a justification for more carnage. ..."
"... In fact, the appointments of warhawks John Bolton and Mike Pompeo to the national security team, suggests that Trump may be planning a major escalation in the near future. The president has aligned himself with a Zionist right-wing fringe who see the conflict as a proxy-war with Iran that must be won in order to establish US-Israeli regional hegemony and maintain a stranglehold on vital resources and pipeline corridors. Trump's missile attack is just a minor skirmish in that much larger war. ..."
"... I am a card carrying deplorable. I prefer Trump to Mueller. But I can no longer defend Trump. He is a Zionist first and an American second. ..."
"... I don't believe that "the fix was in" because the runways of major military airports were targeted. There was no guarantee that the Pantsir and Buk's would be as effective as they were. ..."
"... If Trump gets in trouble for a fake missile attack in response to a fake chemical weapons attack that made use of non-existent WMD, then what can I say? ..."
"... Regardless of Trump's ignorance, who still believes in presidents having real power by status of function alone, Obama never mattered neither, the pot-shots were a worthy experiment on how to apply global rule, by global consensus ..."
"... "Or perhaps we should judge Trump by the company he keeps. Bolton in Washington and Israel/Saudi Arabia in the MENA. The scum of the earth." ..."
"... Yes, I base my opinion of Trump's loyalties on exactly that. It started with his appointment of Nikki Haley and all the Trumpeteers on ZH chanting "keep your friends close and your enemies closer". Just seeing the way his choices of neocons and Goldman Sachs thieves for his inner circle were being defended by people who claimed to have voted for him kept me from defending Trump. ..."
"... Turkey seems to me to be the swing state here. You cannot isolate Russia without Turkey. Not only do they uncork themselves form the Black Sea , there will be no NATO fodder with casualties that no one cares about. Turkey is a big chunk of NATO. This is to sy nothing about trade. Sanction sound nice and dandy in the US, but in Turkey it wrecks their economy. ..."
"... Seems to me that Trump is trying to walk a tightrope here he likely knows the 'chemical' attack is a false flag and his response was designed to appease the zios without actually causing much damage ..."
Apr 19, 2018 | www.unz.com

In short, the attacks accomplished nothing except, perhaps, to temporarily mollify the warmongering western media and their bloodthirsty puppetmasters in the foreign policy establishment.

The fact that Trump felt compelled to launch the attacks before the chemical weapons inspectors from the OPCW had even touched down in Damascus, shows that Washington is not interested in providing justifications for its criminal aggression. Similar to claims of Russia hacking the 2016 US elections or the alleged use of toxic nerve agent in the Skripal incident, the case against Syrian President Bashar al Assad was based on the thin gruel of uncorroborated allegations by jihadist-linked organizations on the ground whose long history of staging provocative incidents to foment a crisis is part of the public record. We're not going to waste our time on that nonsense here. Suffice it to say, that the information from these US-funded organizations is invariably unreliable. Their sole task is to create a justification for more carnage.

... ... ...

Some readers will remember that Trump tacitly revealed his motivation for the attacks in a tweat he delivered just days before the incident. Here's what he said on April 11:

"Much of the bad blood with Russia is caused by the Fake & Corrupt Russia Investigation, headed up by the all Democrat loyalists, or people that worked for Obama. Mueller is most conflicted of all (except Rosenstein who signed FISA & Comey letter). No Collusion, so they go crazy!" The Real Donald Trump

What Trump is saying is that his real enemy is Mueller not Putin. It's Mueller, the bigwig Dems and the media that are fomenting this Russphobic hysteria and trying to destroy Trump. And that's what precipitated the 'wag the dog' scenario that unfolded on April 14th. Trump was trying to get his enemies off his back by incinerating a few empty buildings in Syria. And, it almost worked, but now information is beginning to leak-out that could be damaging to both Trump and his chief lieutenants.

... ... ...

...how does one explain this tidbit from RT:

"Before we took the action, the United States communicated with the Russian Federation to reduce the danger of any Russian or civilian casualties," (US Ambassador to Russia) Jon Huntsman said, claiming that "all the targets were linked with the Assad regime's illegal chemical weapons program."

The US ambassador to Russia said that the US strikes were coordinated with Russia to avoid a great power confrontation." (RT)

Military analyst Publius Tacitus is even more explicit in a post at Colonel Pat Lang's website, Sic Semper Tyrannis. He says:

"Russia was told where we were going to strike. Russia in turn warned the Syrians. Both the Syrians and the Russians evacuated key personnel and equipment from the target sites. Any claim by the United States that we caused devastating damage or destroyed essential capabilities is total fantasy." (Trump's big Flop in Syria", Publius Tacitus, Sic semper Tyrannis)

... ... ...

In any event, we can see that the April 14 missile attacks were largely a symbolic muscle-flexing exercise that was aimed at pacifying Trump's domestic rivals rather than punishing Assad for crimes he never committed. (It is worth mentioning that there have been many credible reports that the US used banned substances in its siege of Raqqa last year.) The fact that Putin limited his response to a perfunctory denunciation, suggests that Trump achieved his objectives. (In other words, he avoided WW3) Here's part of what Putin said:

"Russia condemns in the strongest possible terms the attack against Syria, where Russian military personnel are assisting the legitimate government in its counterterrorism efforts.

Through its actions, the US makes the already catastrophic humanitarian situation in Syria even worse and brings suffering to civilians. In fact, the US panders to the terrorists who have been tormenting the Syrian people for seven years, leading to a wave of refugees fleeing this country and the region.

The current escalation around Syria is destructive for the entire system of international relations." (Kremlin, RU)

Putin is right. Washington's support for the Sunni extremists in Syria has prolonged the war and turned the country into a smoldering wastelands. Unfortunately, it does not look like the US is going to throw in the towel anytime soon. In fact, the appointments of warhawks John Bolton and Mike Pompeo to the national security team, suggests that Trump may be planning a major escalation in the near future. The president has aligned himself with a Zionist right-wing fringe who see the conflict as a proxy-war with Iran that must be won in order to establish US-Israeli regional hegemony and maintain a stranglehold on vital resources and pipeline corridors. Trump's missile attack is just a minor skirmish in that much larger war.


reiner Tor , April 17, 2018 at 2:03 pm GMT

I'd find it scary if it turned out that Dunford had to defy orders to avoid WW3. It'd confirm that Trump was actually insane.
WorkingClass , April 17, 2018 at 2:38 pm GMT
"What Trump is saying is that his real enemy is Mueller not Putin."

What the failure to withdraw from Syria is saying is that Mueller is Commander In Chief.

Or perhaps we should judge Trump by the company he keeps. Bolton in Washington and Israel/Saudi Arabia in the MENA. The scum of the earth.

I am a card carrying deplorable. I prefer Trump to Mueller. But I can no longer defend Trump. He is a Zionist first and an American second.

Dan Hayes , April 18, 2018 at 4:35 am GMT
Mike Whitney:

Prof Emeritus Steve Cohen essentially concurs with your analysis. Tonight Cohen expressed concern that the national drumbeat against Trump essentially checkmates any efforts to repair US-Russian relations.

As an aside, UR readers are referred to Robert Fisk's very recent report in the UK Independent that the purported Syrian gas attack actually arose from artillery-induced asphyxiation in underground tunnels.

The Scalpel , Website April 18, 2018 at 5:56 am GMT
I don't believe that "the fix was in" because the runways of major military airports were targeted. There was no guarantee that the Pantsir and Buk's would be as effective as they were. I don't see Putin happily agreeing to have those airport runways put out of commission. a bit of deconfliction, yes, a total charade, no. This could have quite easily escalated
jilles dykstra , April 18, 2018 at 6:58 am GMT
Why fiasco ? The effectiveness of anything can only be judged by knowing what the objective was. Those who want Syria, or/and Assad attacked, most of them, have the idea that something was done. Difficult for USA propaganda media to state that Trump did nothing.

Then there now is the fact that Syrian systems are quite capable of resisting missile attacks. Possibly Israel will think twice before launching another attack. So in my opinion, what Trump did is possibly a great success.

Seamus Padraig , April 18, 2018 at 7:50 am GMT
If Trump gets in trouble for a fake missile attack in response to a fake chemical weapons attack that made use of non-existent WMD, then what can I say? It's really Trump himself more than the neocons who's to blame. His refusal to grow a pair and stand up to Washington will ultimately be his downfall.

What Trump is saying is that his real enemy is Mueller not Putin. It's Mueller, the bigwig Dems and the media that are fomenting this Russphobic hysteria and trying to destroy Trump. And that's what precipitated the 'wag the dog' scenario that unfolded on April 14th.

It's long past time for Trump to fire Mueller. The fake 'RussiaGate' investigation is over and didn't find anything actionable. How much longer is Trump going to allow this little fishing expedition to go on?

Trump was trying to get his enemies off his back by incinerating a few empty buildings in Syria. And, it almost worked, but now information is beginning to leak-out that could be damaging to both Trump and his chief lieutenants.

As a candidate, Trump never hesitated to call out the BS in DC. But if, as president, he goes along with this kabuki-theater, then he deserves what he gets.

Realist , April 18, 2018 at 8:55 am GMT
@reiner Tor

I'd find it scary if it turned out that Dunford had to defy orders to avoid WW3. It'd confirm that Trump was actually insane.

I don't know about insane but he is certainly a feckless, nutless POS.

m___ , April 18, 2018 at 11:35 am GMT
Regardless of Trump's ignorance, who still believes in presidents having real power by status of function alone, Obama never mattered neither, the pot-shots were a worthy experiment on how to apply global rule, by global consensus. Next to it, Gaza comes to mind, even the South African government of "natives" see the potential for Boers containment as inspired by Gaza.

Pot-shots, latter Russia moves, Chinese containment attitudes:

By experimenting, science progresses, the science of governing, the size of experiments, containment, all these goodies that matter and can make for advancements in efficiently, ruling the human mess into survival. Building data, in a few years, resulting into something of predictability in a global context, over longer periods of time. More of this dipping into the chest of tools.

The element to be accented: local experiments, global intent.

Twodees Partain , April 18, 2018 at 12:10 pm GMT
@WorkingClass

"Or perhaps we should judge Trump by the company he keeps. Bolton in Washington and Israel/Saudi Arabia in the MENA. The scum of the earth."

Yes, I base my opinion of Trump's loyalties on exactly that. It started with his appointment of Nikki Haley and all the Trumpeteers on ZH chanting "keep your friends close and your enemies closer". Just seeing the way his choices of neocons and Goldman Sachs thieves for his inner circle were being defended by people who claimed to have voted for him kept me from defending Trump.

I figured that he was getting support from a pool of neocons and that made him one of them.

DESERT FOX , April 18, 2018 at 12:42 pm GMT
The missile attacks confirmed Israels control over the U.S. gov which was proven by the fact that Israel did 911 and got away with killing some 3000 Americans. Israel and her ziocons control the U.S. gov lock stock and gun barrel and are destroying America.

Assad has never used gas attacks on the Syrian people , these attacks were perpetrated by the CIA and the MOSSAD and MI6 and NATOs Operation Gladio, these people are satanist war mongers straight from HELL.

God bless Assad and Syria and Putin and Russia for standing against these satanic forces that are HELL bent on destroying Syria.

Carroll Price , April 18, 2018 at 3:05 pm GMT
"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American people believe is false." CIA director William Casey (CIA director, 1981-1987)

gwynedd1 , April 18, 2018 at 4:51 pm GMT

@WorkingClass

Turkey seems to me to be the swing state here. You cannot isolate Russia without Turkey. Not only do they uncork themselves form the Black Sea , there will be no NATO fodder with casualties that no one cares about. Turkey is a big chunk of NATO. This is to sy nothing about trade. Sanction sound nice and dandy in the US, but in Turkey it wrecks their economy.

gda , April 18, 2018 at 5:58 pm GMT
@reiner Tor

What a bunch of shite. It just shows that Mike Whitney and his fans have no idea of what is actually going on behind the scenes, and continue to glom on to the MSM shrieks of Mueller and Russia, Russia, Russia.

If you believe this had anything whatsoever to do with Mueller then you're a chump and clearly don't even deserve to be enlightened. I would suggest turning off the CNN, but you're already infected.

Mueller has been cock-blocked and Trump is in command. The revelations to come from the IG Report and more are going to be delicious. There will be much wailing and gnashing of teeth.

gda , April 18, 2018 at 6:03 pm GMT
@Michael Kenny

Sorry mate, Trump Derangement Syndrome seems to have taken over your brain. Turn off the CNN and take the red pill.

gda , April 18, 2018 at 6:05 pm GMT
@FB

Robert Fisk? Seriously? LOL

anonymous [353] Disclaimer , April 18, 2018 at 6:11 pm GMT
The point was to send a message to Assad that the US and it's allies are able and willing to take action should he try to cross the red line drawn around Saudi Arabia. Once the war winds down and the Syrian state starts regrouping and rebuilding there's naturally going to be a payback time against the regional actors who poured so many resources into trying to demolish the Syrian state. This means Saudi Arabia which is vulnerable in a number of ways. SA is a huge customer and spends billions in the US and allied countries and is thus under the US umbrella of protection as a valuable ally. There's bound to be a lot of nervousness in Riyadh right now so the US must demonstrate a willingness to act militarily to them.
gda , April 18, 2018 at 6:16 pm GMT
@Realist

So he's brought NATO to the table regarding funding, is about to solve the greatest crisis/threat to the world by bringing NK to the table re; Denuclearization, and has plans to solve the ME situation (which you clearly know nothing about) using the GCC.

Yet he's a feckless, nutless POS.

You seem to be somewhat lacking in judgement. Beyond redemption with your TDS. A crazed loon.

Did you miss the first part of the IG's report? Do you realize what's to come? Nah, it's all Russia, Russia, Russia nonsense with your ilk.

Keep it up – you keep us amused with your ignorant thrashing about.

Anon [425] Disclaimer , April 18, 2018 at 7:46 pm GMT
Redemption of Sachs?
Herald , April 18, 2018 at 7:48 pm GMT
@The Scalpel

You raise points of doubt and effectively deal with them yourself. Putin would have been very unlikely to have been involved in any detailed negotiations over targets. These would have been dealt with by his military commanders. If airfields were targeted then it would appear details were indeed known to the Syrian defenders. This goes some of the way to explain the abysmal success rate of the US missiles in this fiasco as Mike Whitney and many others rightly call it. So a hoax it certainly was and one to compare with the hoax gas attack in Eastern Ghouta.

Moi , April 18, 2018 at 9:14 pm GMT
@WorkingClass

Trump is in the pockets of the Zionists, and has become a Zionist because the one thing he understands is which side his bread is buttered on. To make sense of anything we do in the ME, you only need to ask one question: "What does Israel want."

Carroll Price , April 18, 2018 at 9:29 pm GMT
@Sean

It just seems like a very dangerous ploy for a meaningless reward (the natural resources Syria and strategic importance of Syria are very modest).

Maybe true, except for the fact that Syria, under Assad's leadership serves as a convenient land route over which sophisticated weapons produced in Iran are delivered to Hezbollah defense forces in Lebanon. In my opinion, this is the primary reason behind current US and Israeli efforts being made to destroy Assad. The bottom line is that Israel has been attacking it's weak neighbors for such a long time, until they simply find it impossible to live with the reality of being unable to invade Lebanon on the slightest pretext. In addition and more ominous, Hezbollah's leader Hassan Rouhani has publically stated that Hezbollah defense forces may eventually extend their protection to the Palestinian people held captive in the Gaza Strip

Sowhat , April 18, 2018 at 9:38 pm GMT
This is what tomfoolery looks like- when "I love mah Generals" and you allow them to "lead the way."
At the same time we have a "three-pete" of the absolutely idiotic accusations that Assad used chem-WMDs on his own civilians. Everyone that uses the internet can ferret out the truth. This isn't ten years ago. This is 2018. Doesn't Intel realize how immature they appear? I'm not only mad as hell, I'm SO disappointed in just how stupid the Government of the United States appears to anyone with half a brain.
I'm ashamed of the Country I thought I loved.
GourmetDan , April 18, 2018 at 9:48 pm GMT
@WorkingClass

I am a card carrying deplorable. I prefer Trump to Mueller. But I can no longer defend Trump. He is a Zionist first and an American second.

Seems to me that Trump is trying to walk a tightrope here he likely knows the 'chemical' attack is a false flag and his response was designed to appease the zios without actually causing much damage

KA , April 19, 2018 at 1:53 am GMT
Iran doesn't want to escalate the situation and give Trump any leverage on Iran deal. Iran wants to deprive any moral political or legal supports from EU to USA on this. Trump pulls out. Rest remains same. This will give Iran moral political and legal authorities to pursue its nuclear program with China and Russia . This will have domino effects on other areas of these 3 countries – how to conduct business internationally.

So a choreographed coordinated attack works for Iran. Trump is happy. His base angry. His enemies can't go after him for few hours or days . Mad madam prostitute Nick Halley has to be soothed by Kudlow telling her she was not a demented rat.

anon [119] Disclaimer , April 19, 2018 at 2:16 am GMT
@AnonFromTN

Why are many commenters so excited? Everything is appropriate: fake missile strike in response to fake chemical weapons use.

That's a good way to put it. Just wish Trump had exercised more restraint in his tweet, he should not have called Assad a "monster". The real monsters are right here in the US, the Israel Lobby and the Deep State led by Rod Rosenstein the fucking weasel, and the biggest monster of them all is right there in the White House with him, Mike Pence, the one who hired Rosenstein, Nikki Haley, Mike Pompeo, John Bolton. Pence the Ziocon has been working hard to subvert Trump since Day 1. He wants to be president.

[Apr 19, 2018] Theresa May ties with military-industrial complex

Apr 19, 2018 | www.unz.com

anon [107] Disclaimer , April 19, 2018 at 1:47 am GMT

@S. N.

UK PM's husband's Capital Group is largest shareholder in BAE, shares soar since Syrian airstrikes: https://www.rt.com/uk/424392-may-husbands-capital-group/

"Philip May, husband of the UK prime minister, works for a company that is the largest shareholder in arms manufacturer, BAE Systems, whose share price has soared since the recent airstrikes in Syria.
The company, Capital Group, is also the second-largest shareholder in Lockheed Martin -- a US military arms firm that supplies weapons systems, aircraft and logistical support. Its shares have also rocketed since the missile strikes last week. . . ."

h/t http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2018/04/real-reporting-on-syria-by-publius-tacitus.html

annamaria , April 19, 2018 at 2:14 am GMT
@Philip Owen

We have got it: Philip Owen believes religiously in the words of Theresa May, Boris Johnson, and Gavin Willaimson. And, of course, Blair is a paragon of honesty for Philip Owen.

What are you doing here, on the Unz Review? -- This is not a ziocon stink-tank source of (dis)information, and this is not the ziocons-controlled MSM's presstitutes' haven.

You make yourself ridiculous by parroting the MSM "wisdom." Your frustration over the impending defeat of "moderate" terrorists in Syria affects your reason and amplifies your rabid hatred of Russia. Don't expect any sympathy for your "victimhood" on this site.

This is the reality: "Salisbury Nerve Agent Attack Reveals $70 Million Pentagon Program at Porton Down," by Dilyana Gaytandzhieva – https://southfront.org/salisbury-nerve-agent-attack-reveals-70-million-pentagon-program-porton/

"Porton Down is just one of the Pentagon-funded military laboratories in 25 countries across the world, where the US Army produces and tests man-made viruses, bacteria and toxins in direct violation of the UN convention . These US bio-laboratories are funded by the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) under a $ 2.1 billion military program– Cooperative Biological Engagement Program (CBEP), and are located in former Soviet Union countries such as Georgia and Ukraine, the Middle East, South East Asia and Africa.
The Pentagon-funded military facilities are not under the direct control of the host state as the US military and civilian personnel is working under diplomatic cover. The local governments are prohibited from public disclosure of sensitive information about the foreign military program running on their own territory."
– All statements in this article are sourced, unlike the pronouncement of the miserable puppets Blair, May, Johnson, and Willaimson.

[Apr 18, 2018] Ever heard of the British Army s 77th Brigade?

Notable quotes:
"... It turns out that news reports citing UOSSM tend *also* to cite or refer to "French intelligence," especially if the report has to do with local conditions or events within Syria. So perhaps the "partnership" between the UOSSM and the White Helmets in Syria represents, in large part, the coordination of British and French military propaganda/intelligence services ..."
"... I had already heard that French intelligence was using Doctors Without Borders (MSF) as cover in Syria, but was not aware that UOSSM in Syria is likely--at least in part--another French intelligence front. ..."
"... My own impression is that the NGO-ification of military and state intelligence of the degree and sophistication we see in Syria is a relatively recent phenomenon, predicated in part on the disseminating capacities of social media platforms. Is this right? ..."
"... My wife and I stopped donating to MSF a few months ago, based on their evident lack of neutrality in Syria. ..."
Apr 18, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Pat Lang Mod -> Wj , a day ago

Ever heard of the British Army's 77th Brigade?
Wj -> Pat Lang , a day ago
PLang,

No, but you just sent me down a fascinating rabbit hole. From what I can tell, there is the already established link between White Helmets and Mayday Rescue, which seems to be an extension of or front for the 77th.

It turns out that news reports citing UOSSM tend *also* to cite or refer to "French intelligence," especially if the report has to do with local conditions or events within Syria. So perhaps the "partnership" between the UOSSM and the White Helmets in Syria represents, in large part, the coordination of British and French military propaganda/intelligence services.

I had already heard that French intelligence was using Doctors Without Borders (MSF) as cover in Syria, but was not aware that UOSSM in Syria is likely--at least in part--another French intelligence front. How common is this kind of multinational coordination of intelligence/propaganda front groups, if that is what this is?

My own impression is that the NGO-ification of military and state intelligence of the degree and sophistication we see in Syria is a relatively recent phenomenon, predicated in part on the disseminating capacities of social media platforms. Is this right?

TTG -> Wj , a day ago
Wj,

"How common is this kind of multinational coordination of intelligence/propaganda front groups, if that is what this is?"

The coordination and interoperability among these special operations units is intense and has grown rapidly over the last decade. Even in the 80s this joint combined exchange training was the norm. Now it extends into live operations.

This 77th Brigade is an odd mashup linking civil affairs and PSYOP capabilities, but kept within the Tier 1 special operations community. I never heard of it before, but it's a logical progression. We probably have a similar military capability, but i have no idea what it is.

JJackson -> TTG , a day ago
I note it also has close links to the close ties with the 361st Civil Affairs Brigade.
Peter C. -> Wj , 7 hours ago
My wife and I stopped donating to MSF a few months ago, based on their evident lack of neutrality in Syria. The reply from their Donor Relations office did nothing to dispel that impression. In it, MSF admitted that "extreme insecurity has forced us to remove our medical teams from the front lines of the conflict. As a result, in order to do what we can to help alleviate the suffering of Syrians, we have partnered with several hospitals and medical clinics to provide support, with medical supplies and expertise from a distance...Though our teams may not be physically present on the front lines, we receive regular reports..."

I think we can guess who those "reports" are from.

[Apr 18, 2018] Douma Chemical Attack False Flag Operation EXPOSED!

Looks like people were bombed and the shelter became full of dust and smoke. That led to some suffocations. Later this was played as chemical attack.
The scenario is classic. Put artillery near residential houses and mercilessly shell residential building on government side killing civilians. Wait for return fire which produce its own set of victims. Stage the false flag operation based on return fire victims and the fact that civilians suffered.
Apr 18, 2018 | www.youtube.com

Annie , 15 hours ago (edited)

Thanks for this video. I have had a gut-full of the west and it's lies to take over countries in the Middle East. It's making me sick. What's happening on a daily basis to the people of Palestine and Syria are war crimes, pure and simple.

The country I live in, Australia, is not on the side of the good guys. We were not on the right side in Libya and Iraq either. I'm so sick of this shit. This is all so the US and their creepy allies, including the head-choppin' Saudis, can put a pipeline through Syria to Europe to compete with Russia and so they can use Syria as a jumping off point to invade Iran. Poor Iran.

The CIA threw out their Democratically elected leader and installed a Dictator who they kept in place for 48 years, using the Shah's brutal secret police. The US hates the Iranians for chucking the puppet out. Iran had every right to do so. God knows how they must feel being under constant threat. Israel have been assassinating their citizens for years and launched the Stuxnet virus (with help from the US) to attack their infrastructure, accidentally infecting the world, including Australia at the time. Thanks to them, every group in the world now has the code for that virus. They modified the code and released it again behind Obama's back.

Israel's illegal nukes can't reach Iran but they will definitely use them against Iran if they can get into Syria to use it as a base for attack. Then what happens to the world? Israel have demonstrated clearly, their disinterest in Human Rights. The only people on the planet they care about are Israelis. Damn Israel and damn the US. Macron is a wanna-be Napoleon and Theresa May is Thatcher- Lite. Both of them are sucking on the tail-pipe of that clown, Trump and are keeping the world in a state of perpetual war. Hands off Syria, wankers!

madex4u , 6 hours ago

The western media has covered up so much lies about Syria and Iraq that only few still brainwashed people believe their fake news

M.K. Styllinski , 9 hours ago (edited)

Aside from this video, there is now overwhelming evidence confirming that this was yet another false flag chemical attack designed to demonise Assad. This isn't the first time. Libya, Yemen, Somalia, Iraq, the Balkans - all suffered a similar fate designed to hoodwink the public in supporting war and resource grab.

it was only a couple of years ago that Assad and Russia were subjected to the same scenario and proven to be utterly false. How long must we swallow these crimes? History is replete with the same state-sponsored crimes against populations. Governments are not acting in our best interests and never have.

Therefore, there is absolutely no excuse for people to believe the utter bullshit spread around the mainstream media which excels in poor journalism and is determined to push this disgusting propaganda on behalf of their respective governments and intel agencies.

Until the public is prepared to comprehend that such false flag attacks are a long used formula by US-NATO for carving up the Middle East then it will continue with impunity. I hope everyone shares this video on social media in order to counter lazy thinking and the obvious lies that characterize what passes for news.

ameen ayob , 3 hours ago

https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/syria-chemical-attack-gas-douma-robert-fisk-ghouta-damascus-a8307726.html

[Apr 18, 2018] The video is definitely genuine. I watched it all, and it looked very credible

White Helmets are a jihadists propaganda team
Apr 18, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com
FarNorthSolitude , a day ago
Can't vouch for the authenticity - video claims to be interviewing 13 staff from the hospital at Douma. It's from a news service privately owned and loyal to Assad. Definitely some of the same info emerging from Fisk and Sharp.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vSrRV-zdNic&feature=youtu.be

Play Hide

disqus_Z5X4Hq25Pl -> FarNorthSolitude , 9 hours ago
The video is definitely genuine. I watched it all, and it looked very credible. Fisk mentioned that the doctors present at the event in their ER were away in Damascus and not available - there were obviously here making this video. It may be that they were under some constraint, and not able to speak entirely freely.

LaGuerre

[Apr 18, 2018] The magnitude and complexity of the task Russia took on when it agreed to intervene in Syria.

Edited for clarity...
Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Hoarsewhisperer | Apr 18, 2018 4:28:52 AM | 105

The Colonial ratfuckers recent unprovoked, lie-based attack on Syria got me wondering about Russia's apparent impotence. I'm quite uncomfortable with that notion but can't dismiss it completely because I can't get a 'handle' on what Russia's strategy is.

Steve Gowans' latest commentary on Syria sets out his summary of US/NATO's Permanent War agenda in Syria.

https://gowans.wordpress.com/2018/04/16/a-prolonged-war-in-syria-is-on-the-us-agenda/

Despite its pessimism (if one takes it as a 'realistic' assessment), it goes a long way toward explaining the magnitude and complexity of the task Russia took on when it agreed to intervene in Syria.

Being pessimistic, it doesn't broach the subject of potential Bright Sides to the conflict, or the flaws in the US/NATO Strategy.

One rather obvious flaw which came to mind is the fact that Neoliberal Colonialism has inflicted pain on almost every country on the planet and have recently underlined their God-given right to continue doing so ad nauseum - without opposition or consequences.

[Apr 18, 2018] CBS correspondents as members of White Helmets

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

ninel | Apr 18, 2018 9:33:17 AM | 122

A correspondent for US network CBS gained access to the alleged attack site in Douma on Monday. Seth Doane spoke to residents of a building where at least 30 bodies are reported to have been found.

"All of a sudden some gas spread around us," one man said. "We couldn't breathe, it smelled like chlorine."

Another resident, who said many members of his family were among those killed, showed the CBS crew a yellow compressed gas canister that appeared to have punched a hole in the roof of the building. The canister looked similar to others photographed in the wake of other alleged chlorine attacks.

A Swedish journalist who also visited the building in Douma said he had felt a discomfort in his throat and smelled a strong odour as he entered its basement.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-43792120

[Apr 18, 2018] The videos showing persons (White Helmets?) rushing into the site of the alleged chemical attack and pouring water on the "victims" speak for themselves.

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

"All of a sudden some gas spread around us," one man said. "We couldn't breathe, it smelled like chlorine."
_____________________________________

The videos showing persons (White Helmets?) rushing into the site of the alleged chemical attack and pouring water on the "victims" speak for themselves. Likewise, the ancillary first-person reports by medical personnel: 1) affirming that there were no symptoms of chemical poisoning among the dead or injured, and 2) corroborating the reports of third parties rushing in and clamoring "Gas!", "Chemical attack!", etc.

It's obvious enough to any observer with a modicum of rational skepticism that this is the old "fait accompli" version of the Big Lie: just keep repeatedly and firmly insisting that X took place (or X never happened), until a critical mass of complacent, credulous, and submissive useful idiots accept the assertions as fact.

It wouldn't surprise me if, along with all that water being thrown around, a few White Helmet-types also poured around, or even boiled, some ordinary household laundry bleach to provide the unmistakable whiff of chlorine gas in the air.

In sleight-of-hand and similar deceptions, once the audience buys into the premise, it only takes minimal cues to reinforce the fake reality projected by the illusion-master.

Posted by: Ort | Apr 18, 2018 2:03:48 PM | 162 dewn , Apr 18, 2018 2:04:39 PM | 163

@Peter AU

I agree calling him "an actor" is wrong, however this particular boy, according to their (the boy and his father) interview did this for food, he wasn't affected by the dust and smoke event.

[Apr 18, 2018] Syrian boy Hasan Diab, who was presented in a staged White Helmets video as a victim of a chemical attack in Douma, revealed the details of its filming.

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

S | Apr 18, 2018 2:23:51 PM | 165

Rossiya 24 TV channel has interviewed a Syrian boy named Hasan Diab who participated in the filming of the "chemical attack" video. Here is my translation of the article:

Syrian boy Hasan Diab, who was presented in a staged White Helmets video as a victim of a chemical attack in Douma, revealed the details of its filming.

"We were in a basement. Mom told me there's nothing to eat today, we'll only eat tomorrow. We heard someone yelling on the street, they yelled "go to the hospital". We ran to the hospital, and as soon as I have entered, they grabbed me and started to douse me with water. Then they put us on a bed with other people." -- said the boy during his appearance on Rossiya 24 channel.

The channel's military reporter Evgeniy Poddubny noted that the boy was compelled to take part in the video.

"The boy had nothing to eat, he was offered rice, dates, and cookies for this filming." -- said Poddubny.

Hasan's story was confirmed by his father, who added that there had been no chemical attach in the town.

"When I found out that my child was in the hospital, I asked for time off at my work and ran there. There were no chemical weapons whatsoever. I smoked on the street and felt nothing. I entered the hospital and saw my family. The militants gave me dates, cookies, and rice for participating in that filming and let us go home. My child was fine." -- the boy's father told the channel.

[Apr 18, 2018] Macron Napoleonic complex

Apr 18, 2018 | russia-insider.com

In the space of a few days Macron has:

Inadequacy much? How needy for recognition is this guy?

CHUCKMAN 9 hours ago ,

France used to produce some pretty fine leaders, but lately, it's like a different place.

Hollande was the most ridiculous, gutless thing we ever saw. He was laughably pompous and ineffective and dishonest and even cowardly, vis a vis the US.

Macron probably ranks second worst. He's making a mess of France, he's blubbering all kinds of nonsense about the EU, he's busy putting troops in Syria against all international law, he is not liked by the people, and he is virtually a French doormat for America.

Sarkozy showed the odd bit of promise, but he was largely talk with no worthy efforts. And he was immensely corrupt. Imagine taking 20 million euros from Qaddafi and then participating in the scheme to kill him? Or the case of the senile woman who was France's wealthiest woman, from whom he took many millions for his campaigns, doing so in private without other members of the family or strict legal supervision.

Hard to see the same country we saw in de Gaulle's time and that of his immediate successors.

Muriel Kuri 8 hours ago ,

'I am an equal of Putin' - well, he's right in a way - they're both leaders of a country. Beyond that, there is NO comparison. Maybe he admires Putin - which is good, if he tries to emulate him, even better because Putin, after all, is one of the few great current leaders of the world. Macron has a very long way to go, but with many years experience, if he gets the chance, MAY become a better leader than some, but never will be the match of Putin.

[Apr 18, 2018] No coherent or rational narrative behind US action in Syria, but rather a series of self-contradicting escalations and de-escalations, depending upon who holds the strongest hand at any given moment

The simple fact is that the US failed to overthrow Assad and thus is defeated in Syria, and the recent episodes are merely the dying throes of a defeated neoliberal empire
Notable quotes:
"... The truth of this scenario is * one* thing that leads Russia to point out that the US is essentially incapable of acting as a rational international "partner." ..."
Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

WJ | Apr 18, 2018 10:57:39 AM | 135

Don Bacon @123,

I agree with almost everything you say. But, from my perspective, your account and the account of Kori Schake simplifies and somewhat idealizes the mechanism of--call it--"US policy." What Trump himself wants the US to do in Syria--disengage completely--may very well be true. But "US policy" is not determined by what Trump wants, but by the negotiations and struggles between the President and other powerful state-corporate factions. The ongoing nature of these negotiations and struggles produces no coherent or rational narrative behind US action in Syria, but rather a series of self-contradicting escalations and de-escalations, depending upon who holds the strongest hand at any given moment.

The truth of this scenario is * one* thing that leads Russia to point out that the US is essentially incapable of acting as a rational international "partner." It is not *just* the US's deception that makes this so, but the fact that not even the US' deception in recent years can be gamed, because there is no *single* coherent aim behind it: not even American deception can be trusted, in other words.

I find all this pretty convincing. And so I am less certain than some others that *anybody* is yet in a position to say what the US will do or not do in relation to Syria in the next few weeks or months. I do think that a careful reading of several reports coming out of the White House since late February suggest that Trump is neither in control of nor even always aware of the concrete policies toward Syria and Russia that have been planned and implemented by his administration. So while I hope that you are right, and that everybody is able to recognize what is obvious--that there is no way for the US to "win" in Syria at this point without risking nuclear war--I am unfortunately not convinced that this is so.

[Apr 18, 2018] Damage inflicted and the number of rocket that hit university campus

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Indrid Cold | Apr 18, 2018 11:06:21 AM | 136

We dont have to rely on seeing missile parts to know the Pentagon is lying about the air strikes. We have high resolution pictures of the target site at the research center and we have the claim that they hit that site with 76 cruise missiles with 1000 lb warheads! The level of damage does not match that claim. Not even close.

Carefully examine the photos. One building is still heavily intact...maybe 30-40 %. Only the smaller one is obliterated. But notice, not only are these rather small college campus size buildings, each one is hollow. They all have an open courtyard inside. So they are in fact smaller than they first appear. It would take no more than 3 or 4 missiles to destroy each one, if that.

We are looking at a strike from about 10 missiles, not 76.

That is an absurd claim, and they were forced into it because that was the only site they could show extensive damage on. The other two shown were much too small to obscure the truth. This claim of an electronic attack and the Syrians firing at phantom targets is also absurd. While Russia certainly networked the Syrian long range radars to tighten up their airspace, most of Syria's guns and missile systems are elderly.

They are not even digital nor can they be slaved to a network. For a buk system, for example, to fire on a target...the operator must acquire that target on his tracking and guidance radar on the launcher. If the target cant be detected (it's not really there) by the guidance radar, no launch is possible. It doesn't matter if the networked surveillance radar tells them something is out there, the guidance radar must lock onto something to fire.

Even more so for some of their other systems. The only thing they would possibly launch towards a phantom target would be an s 200, on the chance that its semi active homing head would be operational by the time it was near the presumed target...sort of like getting a jump on the target.

[Apr 18, 2018] Theresa May and her family personally have made possibly millions, by the illegal and unsanctioned attack on Syria the other day

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Emily | Apr 18, 2018 3:42:56 AM | 100

We have been hearing stories of the financial political corruption increasingly common here in Britain and in high places.

However confirmation now of one of the most sordid stories - buried of course by the British apology for news - our MSM.

Theresa May and her family personally have made possibly millions, by the illegal and unsanctioned attack on Syria the other day.

The British media is silent. But Russia Today has now exposed what is clearly - I would say in the eyes of most - a resigning matter.

Her family blatantly and it seems secretly making money out of her disgusting warmongering. Her hands covered in blood from Iraq, Libya, Syria etc etc profiting every time Bae systems are involved. You couldn't make it up - as they say.

https://www.rt.com/uk/424392-may-husbands-capital-group/

[Apr 18, 2018] Rand Paul Tells Wolf Blitzer He Thinks Syria Gassing Was False Flag

Apr 18, 2018 | www.defenddemocracy.press

This happened 3 hours ago. Wolf Blitzer can't believe his ears he does his best to argue the other side, saying well, France and UK joined the bombing, so it must true, you aren't suggesting everyone was wrong or something? – are you suggesting the president had bad intelligence? – but Paul isn't buying.

This is great TV:

https://www.youtube.com/embed/K4V3jQCi8-o

"I still look at the attack and say, you know, either Assad must be the dumbest dictator on the planet -- or maybe he didn't do it. I have yet to see evidence that he did do it,"

"The only thing that would galvanize the world to attack Assad directly is a chemical attack. It killed relatively few people compared to what can be killed with traditional bombs and so you wonder really what logic would there be for Assad to be using chemical weapons,"

We have a feeling this bombing is going to turn into a major scandal as it becomes clear what is intuitively obvious – it was a false flag, and this time they're going to get caught on it.

Was the whole thing 3D chess on Trump's part? Did he deliberately go along with the hoax knowing that he would make sure the hoaxers get caught?, and finally free himself from the neocon morons in Washington?

Published at https://russia-insider.com/en/breaking-rand-paul-tells-wolf-blitzer-he-thinks-syria-gassing-was-false-flag-video/ri23194?mc_cid=fd2d25d4a9&mc_eid=4021fa169b

[Apr 18, 2018] Catch 22 in Douma false flag

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Anon | Apr 18, 2018 4:10:40 AM | 103

So what will happen now?

  • 1. OPCW finds nothing = Western MSM will say Russia cleaned it up!!!!!!!!!
  • 2. OPCW finds chemicals = Western MSM will say: Look we were all right in bombing

... ... ...

[Apr 18, 2018] Douma Chemical Attack False Flag Operation Exposed

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

https://youtu.be/vSrRV-zdNic

" I think there was a pre-planned coordination to stage this chemical attack."

Posted by: John Gilberts | Apr 17, 2018 6:43:21 PM | 58

[Apr 18, 2018] Russian show with Yakov Kedmi really surprised and disturbed me

Apr 18, 2018 | thesaker.is

Paul II on April 15, 2018 , · at 10:40 am UTC

What about a fourth type of retaliation, cleaning out the financier/Zionist/pro-Western/liberal infestation inside Russia? This wouldn't require China's approval, and would lead to a much healthier and stronger Russia in the long run.

In my view, China has done far more to get itself out of AZ control and on the path to pursuing its national interests than Russia has. It is depressing to read most Russian blogs as they keep harping on what needed to be done years ago.

Martin Giuffrida on April 15, 2018 , · at 12:12 pm UTC
Yes and this Russian show with Yakov Kedmi really surprised and disturbed me:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VwYcItJp4O8&t=1s

[Apr 18, 2018] Neoliberal propagandists and warmongers at Guardian return to their Iraq war glory

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Babyl-on | Apr 17, 2018 2:14:29 PM | 8

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/apr/17/syria-crisis-medics-intimidated-over-douma-gas-attack

I can hardly believe that I actually read an article like this.

First they delay the OPCW then they claim that Russia and Syria cleaned up the site - several acres where gas was spread all over but those Russians caN clean it all in 24 hours, every trace. They can also hide all the bodies.

Now we here that the medical staff are intimidated and can't say who was treated for what?

But...but...where are the 500 victims???

This is shear desperation and totally P-A-T-H-E-T-I-C

WJ , Apr 17, 2018 2:14:30 PM | 9

@5 Chevrus,

The attempt to coordinate a ground assault of Damascus with a US-Nato aerial bombardment leading to the decapitation of the regime was a key part of the original March plan as reported by Theyssan, Magnier, and in a recent Sputnik article detailing the capture of embedded U.K. operatives in Ghouta. There were reports on the night of the strike of coordinated al-Islam and Daesh ground attacks in the country, but I do not know the details. In general, I think the US-UK played through the original March script with modifications occasioned by necessity, and are now thinking through a plan to repeat that script somehow. Others disagree. We are probably all wrong.

WJ , Apr 17, 2018 2:18:28 PM | 12
@8,

The public will totally buy it. We have been conditioned to fear the Russians for a reason after all. Anybody in their vicinity would tell them what they want to hear--otherwise they could get Skripaled.

WJ , Apr 17, 2018 2:26:30 PM | 13
@8,

Also, the source for the Guardian piece turns out to be a kind of international White Helmets parent group--the UOSSM. They played a role in the 2017 chemical attack investigation and later had to withdraw their testimony as unqualified: http://theindicter.com/uossm-admits-that-doctor-reporting-alleged-khan-shaykhun-
aerial-attack-was-not-qualified-to-do-that/

[Apr 18, 2018] Propaganda war around Douma false flag: It's gone well beyond craven. As Murray wrote, it's now Goebbels Land

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

karlof1 | Apr 17, 2018 3:55:46 PM | 35

Geroman documents on his Twitter via retweets Swedish and Dutch news stations falsifying translations of Syrians being interviewed. One example:

"#Swedish @TV4 totally lying when they interview this woman totally wrong translation. Woman says USA, @TV4 translates " Russia, Iran & regime must leave our lands"."

It's gone well beyond craven. As Murray wrote, it's now Goebbels Land.

Mina , Apr 17, 2018 5:20:51 PM | 45

35

I noticed the same misleading translations of Syr refugeed on French radios and tvs for years

Posted by: Mina | Apr 17, 2018 5:20:51 PM | 45 /div

[Apr 18, 2018] The sinister role of French intelligence ion Douma event and attempts to hide their involvement

Notable quotes:
"... In other words, French intelligence blows. (I am referring to the discovered caches of chemical weapons and the elaborate tunnel-structures under Douma.) ..."
Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

WJ | Apr 17, 2018 11:22:20 PM | 77

From declassified French intelligence dossier on 4/7/18 Douma:

- The French services do not have any information to support the thesis that armed groups in Ghouta have sought to obtain or have had chemical weapons.

In addition, they believe that a manipulation of massively disseminated images from Saturday, April 7 is not credible, especially since the groups present in the Ghouta do not have the means to carry out a communication maneuver of such magnitude.

In other words, French intelligence blows. (I am referring to the discovered caches of chemical weapons and the elaborate tunnel-structures under Douma.)

[Apr 18, 2018] That fancy tunnel with the chemical factory looks like "Made In USA". Very impressive

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

karlof1 | Apr 17, 2018 12:52:30 PM | 118

...Meanwhile, yet another chemical weapons warehouse facility was discovered in the tunnels under Douma. If you've yet to take a look into those massive catacombs, I'm reposting the link to the video of them .

fastfreddy , Apr 17, 2018 1:53:03 PM | 124

118

That fancy tunnel looks like "Made In USA". Very impressive.

[Apr 18, 2018] Rand Paul throws Wolf Blitzer a big curve ball on CNN, says he is suspecting this is another false flag...

Notable quotes:
"... War stories, however, have a habit of growing darker. For the same 58-year old senior Syrian doctor then adds something profoundly uncomfortable: the patients, he says, were overcome not by gas but by oxygen starvation in the rubbish-filled tunnels and basements in which they lived, on a night of wind and heavy shelling that stirred up a dust storm ..."
Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

oldenyoung | Apr 17, 2018 7:18:40 PM | 62

Finally some traction...Rand Paul throws Wolf Blitzer a big curve ball on CNN, says he is suspecting this is another false flag...

https://russia-insider.com/en/breaking-rand-paul-tells-wolf-blitzer-he-thinks-syria-gassing-was-false-flag-video/ri23194

regards

OY

Don Bacon , Apr 17, 2018 7:41:01 PM | 63
from the Independent

The search for truth in the rubble of Douma – and one doctor's doubts over the chemical attack

Exclusive: Robert Fisk visits the Syria clinic at the centre of a global crisis

This is the story of a town called Douma, a ravaged, stinking place of smashed apartment blocks – and of an underground clinic whose images of suffering allowed three of the Western world's most powerful nations to bomb Syria last week. There's even a friendly doctor in a green coat who, when I track him down in the very same clinic, cheerfully tells me that the "gas" videotape which horrified the world – despite all the doubters – is perfectly genuine.

War stories, however, have a habit of growing darker. For the same 58-year old senior Syrian doctor then adds something profoundly uncomfortable: the patients, he says, were overcome not by gas but by oxygen starvation in the rubbish-filled tunnels and basements in which they lived, on a night of wind and heavy shelling that stirred up a dust storm. . . .
here

[Apr 18, 2018] Trump just can stop lying

Notable quotes:
"... They've had a weekend to work on the damage control strategy (as they say) and the Wall Street Journal has a slobbery article about how Bolton yielded to Mattis and agreed to fewer targets. ..."
"... If it's true that 2/3 of the missiles were intercepted and the WSJ article is mainly cover up propaganda, it's actually pretty cleverly done (and scary, frankly). I wonder how much of the war history I've been taught over the years is accurate. ..."
"... Trump, lying sack of shit bragging about Bolton and successful hit on Syria.: They didn't shoot one down. The equipment didn't work too well their equipment! blah-blah-blah https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8W9jS3-gt7w ..."
"... This is the lying ass many of you still can't condemn! Get over it already - he's a Zionist quisling, always was and still is! ..."
Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Joanne Leon | Apr 16, 2018 4:35:56 PM | 19

They've had a weekend to work on the damage control strategy (as they say) and the Wall Street Journal has a slobbery article about how Bolton yielded to Mattis and agreed to fewer targets.

If it's true that 2/3 of the missiles were intercepted and the WSJ article is mainly cover up propaganda, it's actually pretty cleverly done (and scary, frankly). I wonder how much of the war history I've been taught over the years is accurate.

"Trump Bowed to Pentagon Restraint on Syria Strikes"
https://www.wsj.com/articles/trump-bowed-to-pentagon-restraint-on-syria-strikes-1523837509

Circe , Apr 16, 2018 4:37:08 PM | 20

Trump, lying sack of shit bragging about Bolton and successful hit on Syria.: They didn't shoot one down. The equipment didn't work too well their equipment! blah-blah-blah https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8W9jS3-gt7w

This is the lying ass many of you still can't condemn! Get over it already - he's a Zionist quisling, always was and still is!

[Apr 18, 2018] More on the Skripal/Douma false flag connection

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Neve | Apr 16, 2018 3:52:13 PM | 2

Two great links at OffG

"The Skripal event and the Douma "gas attack" – two acts in the same drama?"
http://off-guardian.org/2018/04/14/the-skripal-event-and-the-douma-gas-attack-two-acts-in-the-same-drama/


"More on the Skripal/Douma false flag connection"
http://off-guardian.org/2018/04/15/46325/

[Apr 18, 2018] US Reporter in Douma Nobody Heard or Saw Anything Like a 'Chemical Attack'

Apr 18, 2018 | sputniknews.com

An American journalist who gained access to the war-torn town of Douma, where the US, France and the UK charged that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad used chemical weapons against civilians, says he found "no evidence" of a chemical weapons attack. "We were brought in with a government escort and shown the areas where the chemical attack allegedly happened. We were able to speak with residents in the area. We were even able to visit the hospital where the White Helmets showed the videos of people being hosed down," reporter Pearson Sharp of OAN revealed in a report from the ground in Syria Monday.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/lSXwG-901yU

"When I went into the town, we didn't know what to expect, but we were brought to one of the neighborhoods close to where the attack happened. I spoke with a number of residents, probably about 10 residents in that neighborhood. This was about a block and a half from where the attack supposedly happened Um, not one of the people I had spoken to in that neighborhood said that they had seen anything or heard anything about a chemical attack on that day [Saturday, April 7]," Sharp said.

© Sputnik / Yazan Kalash 'Intellectual Dwarfs That Created Narrative on Syria Should Be Ashamed' - Researcher

The reporter said he later spoke with another 30 to 40 residents of the town. "I went up to random people. I know there's a lot of concern from people that the residents being interviewed are plants -- they're Russian operatives or they're staged interviews or things like that. We just randomly went up to different people -- nobody came up to us -- and interviewed probably 30 to 40 people. Consistently, not one person in the town said they heard anything about an attack," Sharp said.

​"When I asked them what they thought the chemical attack was, they told me -- all of them -- it was staged by the rebels who were occupying the town at that time. They said it was a fabrication or a hoax. When I asked why, they told me it was because the rebels were desperate and needed a ploy to help the get the Syrian Army off their back so they could escape," he continued.

© AP Photo/ Hassan Ammar Syrian Air Defenses Intercept Missiles Fired by US, UK, France (VIDEO)

"Residents told me the terrorists staged this to get Western powers to attack the Syrian Army, so they could escape."

Following the alleged incident in Douma, Trump, UK Prime Minister Theresa May and French President Emmanuel Macron authorized a military operation to fire missiles at a chemical research facility near Damascus, a weapons storage site and a command base on Friday night. Damascus and Moscow maintain that there was no chemical attack by the Syrian state in Douma.

[Apr 18, 2018] MSM do not want to embarrass Trump

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

daffyDuct | Apr 17, 2018 8:59:55 PM | 147

One America News Network reporter finds no evidence of chem attack: https://youtu.be/lSXwG-901yU

Sputnik covered it: https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/201804171063629688-us-reporter-douma-wa/

The report is nowhere to be found on the OANN site. Don't embarrass the Trumpster!

"One America News Network (abbreviated as OANN), is an American conservative cable news television channel launched on July 4, 2013 that is owned by Herring Networks, Inc. The network is headquartered in San Diego, California, and operates a news bureau in Washington, D.C. and New York City.

Originally launched with the intention of targeting a conservative and center-right audience,OAN states a goal of delivering credible national and international news coverage throughout the day while its prime time political talk shows illustrate a conservative perspective.According to the Washington Post, the channel has risen to greater prominence due to its pro-Trump coverage."

[Apr 18, 2018] Blatant exploitation of the delay of arrival of OPCW inspectors to Douma for propaganda purposes

The delay definitely represents a blunder by Syrian government from propaganda purposes, but war is war and may be British tried to do some additional troubles. Who knows. It now exploited to the fullest extent possible.
Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org
james , Apr 17, 2018 9:56:26 PM | 74
usa daily propaganda press briefing from today..
https://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/dpb/2018/04/280553.htm

"Part of the concern, Matt, is the longer that it takes to get OPCW inspectors in to take a look at soil samples and other information that they can get on the ground, that delay further degrades any evidence that's on the ground. So that is our chief concern. We want them to be able to get in as quickly as possible, as safely as possible, but we also want that evidence to be as pure as possible for their investigation."

you mean like how the UK gave that same opportunity to russia when it first blamed russia for the skripal event? righto..

matt lee last response "QUESTION: Okay. But – so – but you're just saying then – because the bottom line here is you're saying, "Just trust us."

"QUESTION: But you've not mentioned sarin. You've – or has that actually been --

MS NAUERT: In that background briefing, that was mentioned. We have information that leads us to believe that both chlorine and sarin were used in the attack.
...
QUESTION: Hi. Thanks. You still stand by the proof that you say the U.S. has on this, right? You --

MS NAUERT: I certainly do, yes. "

" QUESTION: Could I ask – hi. Could I ask you to square to – square for us your desire to have the inspectors go in and establish the veracity of evidence on the one hand, but on the other hand your rush to attack and strike Syria? Could you square that for us?"

MS NAUERT: The United States has excellent intelligence gathering. Other countries do as well. We do not take these decisions, we do not make these decisions, lightly. As we saw what happened with information that led us to believe that sarin and chlorine gas were used in this most recent attack, the United States, the UK, and France got together, had conversations about telling Bashar al-Assad that this has to stop. And we believe in the efforts that took place on Friday night that we showed them that we are very serious about this, and that the world will stand up, the world will act together, and we will not tolerate the use of these illegal chemical weapons to kill innocent men, women, and children.

QUESTION: Right. I am trying to understand that the inspectors, the OPCW inspectors, were supposed to go in on Saturday, and the strike happened Saturday morning. I mean, they could've waited, like 20 hours, 24 hours, to ensure that the whole world can see that evidence.

MS NAUERT: Okay, Said, once again, we have our own intelligence. We have our own intelligence. The OPCW is something that we back strongly, but it can also take quite a bit of time for the OPCW to gather its information and compile a report. If we look back to last year – and I can have my colleagues double check this right now – I think it took quite a few months, at least several months, before the OPCW was able to come out with its official report about what substance was used on the ground in Khan Shaykhun.

So I would ask you: Should the United States and her allies wait around for Bashar al-Assad to use more chemical substances on his people? Should we wait around for that formal investigation that could take months and months when we have seen nine chemical attacks take place this year alone? I think the United States was right in its decision, backed by our allies, to take action and show Bashar al-Assad that he will be held to account."

see the link for more stupidity..


[Apr 18, 2018] Chinese position of Douma false flag

Apr 18, 2018 | thesaker.is

Anonymous on April 15, 2018 , · at 9:55 am UTC

The Chinese newspaper the Global Times agrees with the Saker:

"Washington's attack on Syria where Russian troops are stationed constitute serious contempt for Russia's military capabilities and political dignity. Trump, like scolding a pupil, called on Moscow, one of the world's leading nuclear powers, to abandon its "dark path." Disturbingly, Washington seems to have become addicted to mocking Russia in this way. Russia is capable of launching a destructive retaliatory attack on the West. Russia's weak economy is plagued by Western sanctions and squeezing of its strategic space. That the West provokes Russia in such a manner is irresponsible for world peace Western countries continue bullying Russia but are seemingly not afraid of its possible counterattack. Their arrogance breeds risk and danger."

Graeme - Australia on April 15, 2018 , · at 5:28 pm UTC
Yes, I also follow the Global Times editorials, and have friends in China

Simon Chow nails it, in my opinion

America is playing checkers (or some other child's game). Russia is playing Chess, and we know how good they are at that. China is playing Chinese Chess and that is fking impossible to understand for a westerner subtle does not cover it .. and China has the father (godfather?) of all generals and military strategists, Sun Tzu . go figure

I agree, the fat lady is out there somewhere warming her vocal chords.

Sarmis2014 on April 15, 2018 , · at 11:30 pm UTC
Talking about chess In my humble opinion all the suffering and foreign occupation of Syria could end in less than a month if Russia would have the guts to threaten (behind closed doors or overtly) that if the attacks and occupation of Syria will not stop Russia will provide the weapons necessary to nullify the military superiority of Israel to all relevant enemy of Israel and of course to Syria. The timed leak in the news that Russia considers providing S-300 to Syrian is a good start but obviously not firm and strong enough, According to Paul Craig Roberts "to restate the point once again, the passivity of the Putin government in the face of Washington's aggressiveness is leading directly to nuclear war and the end of life on earth". I think Russia can be "passive" by not attacking US but can be very engage by threatening were it hurts the most the safety of Israel. Cheers
Anonymous on April 15, 2018 , · at 11:33 pm UTC
It is an old metaphor. I think it was used on Atimes years ago: Americans play Monopoly, Russians play chess. Someone added (it could have been me) and Chinese play Go! That was a response: Americans play poker, the game of the 'achievers'. The response was: Americans play poker with loaded dices' and if their bluff is called, they pull the gun and 'take it all'. If I am not mistaken, the verbal joust originated in Australia!
Graeme - Australia on April 16, 2018 , · at 1:13 am UTC
Yes, Go 围棋

From the rules:
• Sacrifice: Allowing a group to die in order to carry out a play, or plan, in a more important area.

Interesting

From the Global Times

'Drill a warning to secessionist forces'

The news that the People's Liberation Army will conduct live-fire military exercises in the Taiwan Straits on April 18 has shocked Taiwan. It is a clear warning against recent pro-independence activities on the island, especially head of Taiwan's administrative authority Lai Ching-te's advocacy for independence.

Secessionists should not fantasize that the US will come to their rescue, even though the US had passed the Taiwan Travel Act. National unity is in the core interest of China, which is determined and capable of shattering any foreign intervention. Once Beijing decides to take action, it won't be stopped by any other force.

We believe that if the mainland were to take a military strike against "Taiwan-independence" forces, Washington would have no effective means other than protest.

The planned military drills will be a reconfirmation of Beijing's bottom line. Let the bombing and shooting drills alert Taiwan, rather than letting them actually occur on the island. The mainland does not wish to end the Taiwan question with a military showdown, however, how the situation develops depends on how much rationality remains in the Taiwan administration.

The Ukraine, North Korea .. Sth China Sea .. Syria

Russia, cold war
China, trade war

America is somewhat busy at the moment.

Could it take on a direct confrontation over Taiwan?

I think Syria is too strategically important to be 'allowed to die' .. but, then, I cannot play Go

Interesting ..

Anonymous on April 16, 2018 , · at 1:56 am UTC
What about the 'rumors' that China will build a base in Vanuatu? "We would view with great concern the establishment of any foreign military bases in those Pacific Island countries and neighbours of ours," Mr Turnbull said. Ahem!
Graeme - Australia on April 16, 2018 , · at 4:20 am UTC
Yes, I wonder what Mr Turnbull would say if it was America doing the same thing?

Oh that's right . does not need to . already has a base here in Australia

Although, Australia has little choice, I believe. We still need a big brother. Although that is getting very very complicated.

Australia's geography will determine its future .. IS determining its future

Anonymous on April 16, 2018 , · at 10:54 pm UTC
Australia has a 'Big Moma' already, the owner of it, actually.
Anonymous on April 16, 2018 , · at 2:36 am UTC
Could America take on a direct confrontation over Taiwan?

If Taiwan is 500 kilometers off the coast from California, America just might give it a try. But alas, Taiwan is 500 kilometer off the coast from Fujian Province. Only a deranged America would take the bite. Let's see if America is deranged. Lately there are signs it is down that slippery slope.

Graeme - Australia on April 16, 2018 , · at 4:30 am UTC
What I meant, is the China is choosing its timing and confrontation very carefully

America is the next door neighbour who has watched the plum ripen every day, fearing that pesky Chinese neighbour will steal it and eat it

Not being careful, or just being plain dumb, the American knocked over a hornets nest and and now too busy dealing with the angry hornets to keep an eye on the plum

Timing is everything

[Apr 18, 2018] Voting in UN on Russian resolution

Apr 18, 2018 | thesaker.is

Serbian girl on April 15, 2018 , · at 10:17 am UTC

Excellent analysis by the Saker!

Here is a list of the non-permanent members of the UNSC: (the year indicates the end of their two year term)

Bolivia (2018)
Côte d'Ivoire (2019)
Equatorial Guinea (2019)
Ethiopia (2018)
Kazakhstan (2018)
Kuwait (2019)
Netherlands (2018)
Peru (2019)
Poland (2019)
Sweden (2018)

Every single country (!) on this list- except for Bolivia – abstained in the latest UNSC vote to stop aggression against Syria Russia, China, Bolivia voted in favor. USA, UK, France vited against. With just ONE vote the resolution would have passed

Kazakhstan is a member of the SCO..why did they not join Russia and China to support this resolution?? I am beginning to think the SCO is just hype.

One thing's for sure: I'm going to miss Bolivia when their term ends this year

Anonymous on April 15, 2018 , · at 1:28 pm UTC
Incorrect analysis.

The resolution was never going to pass. The US, the UK and France all posses the veto power of a permanent member of the UNSC. Thus, it does not matter how many voted in favor. The resolution was defeated.

I think I remember seeing at least one statement from another country that said that there was purpose of voting in favor of a veto'd resolution. Why bother. Especially when the US is infamous for blackmailing and armtwisting nations that vote against them. It was only a few months ago that Nutti Nikki declared the US was 'taking names' of those who opposed the.

There isn't any reason to vote for a resolution that is already and certainly veto'd. Actually, you see this alot also in bodies like the US Congress. Once a side has the votes to know they won (or lost), then a single vote doesn't mean anything. Thus a congressperson can vote a way that pleases the voters (or the lobbyists) and know that they are doing so with no impact on whether the measure passes or fails. You sometimes see members of congress voting for and against the same bill so they can take either position in the next campaign!

Serbian girl on April 15, 2018 , · at 3:20 pm UTC
Anonymous, you are of course correct. It's the SC and not the GA so any veto will bring down the resolution. Thank you for correcting my mistake. I also understand perfectly your point about tactical voting.

However:

It would send a powerful message to the empire (and the world) if Russia were not so isolated in her diplomatic efforts, even if a resolution is vetoed!..As Saker mentioned above noone seems to care about the higher values of international law. By keeping a low profile and abstaining these countries are basically confirming that there is no diplomatic way to stop the aggression.

tomo on April 15, 2018 , · at 6:36 pm UTC
what is happening to Russia funnily reminds me of what happened to me as a kid – I was maybe 9.
there was a bully in our neighborhood park where we used to play – he was 3 or 4 years older than most of us. He used to beat all of us individually (I was the youngest in the group) – but then I would come behind him when he was not looking and hit him with a brick etc.
so one day all the kids gathered (not sure whose idea it was – not mine – but I approved and joined them) and agreed to circle the bully and at 1..2..3..we were all to jump at him and to start beating him I thought it was a great idea.
so we went there and did that – 1..2..3 – I jumped on the bully and started kicking him – only to realize that everybody else just stayed where they were. I was the only one fighting him Even my brother didn't join me.
I hope the same thing does not happen to Russia – but if it does – just be prepared – and never trust psychopathic Anglo – west
Anonymous on April 15, 2018 , · at 1:33 pm UTC
Bolivia has a democracy that has elected governments that actually favor their people over corporations, and god forbid, that don't favor foriegn (American) corporations over their own people.

Thus, the US has already declared Bolivia an enemy. They don't seem to be number 1 on the American kill list, but they are already on the list.

Anonymous on April 15, 2018 , · at 1:46 pm UTC
At this point in time, the UNSC is blocked to both sides. Neither side can pass a UNSC resolution against the other. One side had 2 and now 3 vetos. The other side has 2 vetos. Nothing is passing.

Which means that neither side can claim UNSC sanction for their wars. Which in turn really makes any war illegal. Not that any of the Axis of Evil care about that. For the record, Trump violated the US Constitution in two ways (at least) by attacking Syria, thus, if the system were honest, he would now be impeached. Of course, the system is not honest, but it is highly rigged.

Since Russia and China don't seem to be starting any wars of aggression, that lack of ability to get a UNSC certificate for wars of aggression won't matter much to them. But, also don't expect them to pass anything condemning the Axis of Evil through the UNSC.

The UNSC is now only for making speeches. Both sides then use these messages in their psyOps operations. PsyOps is the right word because both sides now view propaganda as warfare by other means.

Vietnam brought forth the term "hearts and minds." That's what they psyOps wars are fighting over. The hearts and minds of everyone. Or at least those who are paying attention, and of course getting more to pay attention to your psyOps is a part of the battle as well.

The UNSC is thus a tool in these psyOps wars. The Russians make their case. Nutti Nikki screams, rants and threatens. Each is then used as propaganda both at their own people at home and at the rest of the world. It will stay that way as long as no one repeats the Soviet mistake of the Korean War era and gets so fed up with it that they don't bother to show up and cast their veto.

Anonymous on April 15, 2018 , · at 2:17 pm UTC
One interpretation of these comments is that diplomacy is just a bunch of fancy talk to create fodder for psyops. While NATO and other military organizations may view it that way, from another perspective, making speeches in a public meeting like this, where a resolution is on the line, can serve to entrench or resolve conflict. As part of a larger diplomatic strategy.
one minion on April 16, 2018 , · at 12:37 am UTC
The 'hearts and minds' concept originated in the Malaya campaign in the 50's–counter-insurgency–and it was never about hearts and minds, it was about 'killing people in order to save them'– a precursor of 'humanitarian intervention' –basic BS, in other words.
Part of the so-called psyop then was head-chopping of communist Chinese by the British soldiers, I seem to recall.
Francis Lee on April 15, 2018 , · at 1:55 pm UTC
Kazakhstan is one of the founding members of the Eurasian Economic Union. But it has always made its position clear that its membership is based upon economic and not political union. So its vote was not all that surprising. It's called hedging your bets.

[Apr 18, 2018] Possible sup ply of Russian S300 to Syria

Apr 18, 2018 | thesaker.is

Lysander on April 15, 2018 , · at 9:48 am UTC

Saker,

Russia has a lot of options and none of them involve attacking US/NATO forces directly. And General Rudskoy already hinted at one of them, the S300 to Syria and to possibly some other countries. A great idea, but only one of Russia's options.

Following from that, the first thing Russia should do, a long with Iran, Hizbullah and Syria, is exactly what it has been doing: securing more and more of Syria. Since the last time AZ axis did this, Syria's situation on the ground is much improved. By the next time they try, it will be much better still. Eyes on the prize.

Next, the S300. Russia has to impose a painful cost to the enemy without triggering a war. That's where Israel comes in. Russia needs to help Syria (Russia should not do this herself) to bring down a handful of Israeli jets and capture their pilots alive. You will see immediately of the situation changes once 2, 3 or 4 of those most precious of souls are captured. Your head will spin. They will trade whatever they have to to get them back. Capturing American pilots would not have anywhere near the same effect. And British or French pilots? Don't make me laugh. Nobody really cares about the hired help.

Russia also has the option of soft retaliation. The empire has troops all over the world and faces insurgencies in many places. I'm just sayin'. Sometimes accidents happen when you are fighting insurgencies.

Believe me, I understand how disgusted you are by the situation. But this has been Russia's role in the world forever. Defending Europe and the world from the mongols, the Prussians, the Swedes, Napoleon, the Turks, Hitler has earned Russia zero gratitude. But nevertheless, many of us see. Even I, who am not a Christian, can see the analogy clear as day.

Amir on April 15, 2018 , · at 10:36 am UTC
Sinking gas/oil platforms of Levithian field by "unknown assistants" might be a similar "symbolic" response. Similar to US attack of uninhibited buildings, this response by a third party against an ally of US (nominally ally, in reality the master) would send the message, without too much of a risk.
pogohere on April 16, 2018 , · at 8:24 pm UTC
Your comments about the Israeli reaction to the loss of its planes and the capture of their pilots is right. Read the Israeli press and especially the comments that follow the stories. Israeli hubris is not to be believed. The commenters (much less the article authors) can´t acknowledge that US missiles were shot down (albeit, with integrated modern radars, electronic interference, etc, acknowledged) by Syrians with Soviet era junk.

[Apr 18, 2018] The USA bombings do not hinder the progress of the Syrian army

Notable quotes:
"... Yes it is annoying that USA keeps bombing Syria, and yes it ruins the lives of the families that lose loved ones in such attacks. But they do not hinder the progress of the Syrian army. Which likely will have wrapped up everything that is politically easy to wrap up in Syria this year. The border with Israel, Idlib and the kurds being the last more politically difficult parts. ..."
Apr 18, 2018 | thesaker.is

Anonymous on April 15, 2018 , · at 9:40 am UTC

The consequence has not come yet. Those that expected that Russia would sink every American vessels and fire of off thermonuclear weapon at Washington, has no real connection to reality.

Such an action would be the dream of neocons and liberals in the western world. Russia will win as long as they can avoid a full on attack on Syria by USA and getting themselves dragged into a conflict with USA or one of its clients.

Yes it is annoying that USA keeps bombing Syria, and yes it ruins the lives of the families that lose loved ones in such attacks. But they do not hinder the progress of the Syrian army. Which likely will have wrapped up everything that is politically easy to wrap up in Syria this year. The border with Israel, Idlib and the kurds being the last more politically difficult parts.

In reality, Russia and Assad won from this attack I think, it made them look good internationally, it made USA look bad, Trumps supporters are in an uproar right now.. This is not like last year when the democrats supported his attack and his base kinda thought it was acceptable..

This time everyone thinks Trump is a lunatic, even his most fanatic supporters such as Alex Jones that has been being over backwards to protect Trump have lost hope in him

Here Alex actually cries when he finds out what Trump did
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Myz5vBDPH6c

When Russia unified with Crimea, it lost the international moral initiative which it had, now, it is absolutely regained it. This attack while it caused no damage to Russia or the war effort for Syria also gives Russia an excuse to do whatever it wants back.

The consequence of the USA strike could be something like.
1. Giving Syria better and "forbidden" in the style of S400 or S300.
2. Giving Syria more and more advanced pansirs.
3. Giving Syria advance anti-ship missiles, enabling them to take out every USA ship off their coast.
4. Arming groups that oppose USA over the world state actors or non-state actors, either covertly or openly with advanced weapons.
5. Revealing classified information about USA that perhaps USA got Russia to agree it would not reveal. Could be anything, proof perhaps that the USA gold reserve is empty perhaps that USA did 9/11, anything really.
6. A purge of USA backed fifth columnists inside of Russia.

The consequence will be something alone the line of causing long term severe consequence for USA but causing no problem for Russia or even being beneficial.

"Russia's ambassador to the U.S. warned there would be "consequences" for the strike on Syria, and that a "pre-designed scenario" was underway."
https://www.cnbc.com/2018/04/13/russia-warns-of-consequences-for-us-led-strike-on-syria.html

[Apr 18, 2018] The Barzeh Institute in Damascus was part of a larger complex, Damascus no. 1 Tech institute

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Noirette | Apr 17, 2018 2:44:22 PM | 16

The Barzeh Institute in Damascus was part of a larger complex, Damascus no. 1 Tech institute, HIAST. (higher inst. of app. sci. and tech.)

https://hiast.edu.sy/en/about-us

https://hiast.edu.sy/en/contact-us

It is well respected in some European countries (exchange of students, graduates, qualifications, etc. .. see the relations with France for ex.) I couldn't turn up a map of the district with clear labels / the damage this article gives it a try (don't agree with all it says, see maps):

Sott news

It was (imho) just an ordinary lab facility, probably over-used, for multiple purposes, incl. training students. The very idea that chem weapons were developed / produced there is grotesque. Note that in the pix of the rubble (google it) one can intuit that it was at least partially emptied out before the attack. The usual stuff which spills about, like furniture, computers, file cabinets, curtains, piles of paper, sci. equipment like huge fridges, lab benches, blackboards, endless chairs, lights, etc. is missing.

[Apr 18, 2018] War is peace for these guys for key members of Trump administrqation

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Posted by: james | Apr 17, 2018 12:03:14 PM | 110

OT i liked this post i just read at craig murrays site, so i am reposting it...

"Hatuey
April 17, 2018 at 16:11

Let's get back to basics here.

If there's 2 countries in the world that are definitely not in a position to be arguing that we need to bomb anyone in the middle east, it's Britain and America. Jesus Christ almighty, that should be the unquestionable starting point in any discussion about human rights there. The middle east looks like World War Z because of these crackpots.

Once bustling modern cities in the middle east, with hospitals, universities, water, and everything you'd expect to find in a European city, are now crumbling lifeless carcasses because of these nutters.

War is peace for these guys. I mean that. Where we worry about war, they worry about peace. Because who is going to buy their guns and ammo if there's peace? And that's all they are selling. Coffee's for closers. The more misery and division they sow, the more sales they reap."

[Apr 18, 2018] I would think the Pentagon would like to test the Russian defense systems, and the Russians can't be completely sorry they got the opportunity to see how those new systems worked under operational conditions. The winners are the arms manufacturers.

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Valtin | Apr 17, 2018 2:36:59 PM | 131

These skirmishes (not skirmishes to those who live or die because of them), even ones that are war crimes, as this was, seem to me to be in large part ways in which the major powers test out their combat systems. I would think the Pentagon would like to test the Russian defense systems, and the Russians can't be completely sorry they got the opportunity to see how those new systems worked under operational conditions. The winners are the arms manufacturers. The losers are everybody else.

[Apr 18, 2018] There is nothing like American policies in the Trump era. Even the president is not necessarily the last word

Notable quotes:
"... Actually, there is nothing like "American policies" in the Trump era. The Washington Post carried two reports this week underlining the utter confusion within the Trump administration. Even the president is not necessarily the last word. ..."
"... One of these two astonishing reports titled Trump a reluctant hawk has battled his top aides on Russia and lost (here) narrates shocking details on how the former NSA in the White House HR McMaster simply hoodwinked a bumbling Trump into approving the proposal to expel 60 Russian diplomats from the US last month: ..."
"... The second WaPo report (here) narrates how even the famous Nikki Haley can no longer pretend to be Trump's authoritative voice. ..."
Apr 18, 2018 | blogs.rediff.com

Actually, there is nothing like "American policies" in the Trump era. The Washington Post carried two reports this week underlining the utter confusion within the Trump administration. Even the president is not necessarily the last word.

One of these two astonishing reports titled Trump a reluctant hawk has battled his top aides on Russia and lost (here) narrates shocking details on how the former NSA in the White House HR McMaster simply hoodwinked a bumbling Trump into approving the proposal to expel 60 Russian diplomats from the US last month:

The next day, when the expulsions were announced publicly, Trump erupted, officials said. To his shock and dismay, France and Germany were each expelling only four Russian officials The president, who seemed to believe that other individual countries would largely equal the United States, was furious that his administration was being portrayed in the media as taking by far the toughest stance on Russia

Growing angrier, Trump insisted that his aides had misled him about the magnitude of the expulsions. "There were curse words," the official said, "a lot of curse words."

The second WaPo report (here) narrates how even the famous Nikki Haley can no longer pretend to be Trump's authoritative voice.

I'm reminded of Roman Emperor Caligula (AD 37-41). He had a favorite horse by name Incitatus whom he once planned to designate as Roman consul. Caligula used to hold parties for friends in the steed's grand stables. In a fit of exuberant joy, he once named Incitatus a Minister of State.

The Trump presidency has not quite reached that point yet, but bizarre things are happening in the Washington Beltway – like in Caligula's decadent Rome in decline and fall. India will be well advised to keep distance.

[Apr 18, 2018] Transcripts of Lavrov interview by the BBC

Notable quotes:
"... Lavrov knows the game and he handled it in a mature, sensible way. ..."
"... Thanks for the Lavrov interview transcript - I never could have watched it. Lavrov is 100% real, and the other guy is just an English punk, of the false-tough-rude kind that they have specialized in producing for, all of my life certainly, and perhaps for much longer before then. ..."
"... But it's indicative. No BBC interviewer would normally be that unprofessional. I've got used to BBC presenters moving well clear of the neutral zone but this was out of the ordinary. The interviewer would not have been permitted to employ that attack dog approach were there not a strong consensus behind it. ..."
"... That aggressive and bull-headed consensus is what we've also seen in the Commons and in public statements. I've seen a little of American TV recently and it's equally strong there. ..."
Apr 17, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

karlof1 | Apr 17, 2018 6:03:18 PM | 51

Some, like me, prefer to read transcripts than watch interview videos. Here's the BBC/Lavrov HardTalk interview transcript. One is clearly all about objectivity while the other promotes fantasies. It's entirely possible to remain calm when the facts are on your side, which tells you why the BBC reporter's agitated.

dh , Apr 17, 2018 6:56:59 PM | 60

@51 Thanks for the transcript. Stephen Saker is being intentionally provocative and impolite. His audience expects it. It's really just entertainment.

Lavrov knows the game and he handled it in a mature, sensible way.

Grieved , Apr 17, 2018 9:34:07 PM | 71
@51 karlof1

Thanks for the Lavrov interview transcript - I never could have watched it. Lavrov is 100% real, and the other guy is just an English punk, of the false-tough-rude kind that they have specialized in producing for, all of my life certainly, and perhaps for much longer before then.

But more than that, thanks for this: "entirely possible to remain calm when the facts are on your side"

Wonderful observation. Something I had never quite seen.

English Outsider , Apr 17, 2018 2:51:55 PM | 132
HD @ 74.

"I just got done watching Lavrov's interview on Hard Talk, which was painful. It's deja vu all over again for anyone who remembers MSM tactics in 2002-2003."

Very painful indeed. I watched it all through and wished I hadn't.

But it's indicative. No BBC interviewer would normally be that unprofessional. I've got used to BBC presenters moving well clear of the neutral zone but this was out of the ordinary. The interviewer would not have been permitted to employ that attack dog approach were there not a strong consensus behind it.

That aggressive and bull-headed consensus is what we've also seen in the Commons and in public statements. I've seen a little of American TV recently and it's equally strong there.

We've been thwarted in the Ukraine, knocked back in Syria, and R2P is losing the little hold it had. Do we, in this extraordinary BBC interview, see a hint of desperation on the part of our rulers and mentors?

[Apr 18, 2018] G7 Leaders Statement on Syria. Welcome to the 'rules based international order'...

What bunch of despicable liars. All G7 ;-)
Notable quotes:
"... "We the G7 Leaders...fully support all efforts made by the US, the UK and France to degrade the Assad regime's ability to use chemical weapons and to deter any future use, demonstrated by their actions taken on April 13. This response was limited, proportionate and necessary..." ..."
Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

John Gilberts | Apr 17, 2018 3:25:33 PM | 27

G7 Leaders Statement on Syria.

https://pm.gc.ca/eng/news/2018/04/16/g7-leaders-statement-syria

"We the G7 Leaders...fully support all efforts made by the US, the UK and France to degrade the Assad regime's ability to use chemical weapons and to deter any future use, demonstrated by their actions taken on April 13. This response was limited, proportionate and necessary..."

Welcome to the 'rules based international order'...

[Apr 18, 2018] Neoliberal stooge Macron and "Operation Stormy Daniels" in Syria

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Cassandra | Apr 17, 2018 2:02:34 PM | 4

President Macron recently stated that he has „proof" that CW were used in Douma and that is was the Syrian Army. Now the French govt has released the „evaluation nationale" but it seems no-one is paying attention to it.

https://www.defense.gouv.fr/content/download/528742/9123389/file/180414%20-%20Syrie%20-%20Synthe%CC%80se%20-%20Les%20faits.pdf

After reading the document carefully one can only reach one conclusion:

There is NO PROOF whatsover in this evaulation and it is obviously addressed to an audience considered to be incapable of critical thought. The format of the document is rather revealing because it contains no offical ID from a French „service" or ministry (just „Republique Francaise") and the authors are unknown (so no official takes personal responsibility for its content, like the phony „assessment" on CW released by the WH in 2017)

https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/3553049/Syria-Chemical-Weapons-Report-White-House.pdf

In order to find out who committed a crime, forensic evidence is extremely important, as we all know from detective thrillers and court-room dramas. But in this case, there is NO FORENSIC EVIDENCE (no criminal investigation by a CSI-unit). There are only unverified pics and videos posted on YouTube by the White Helmets (WH).

It is impossible to verify WHERE these pics/vids were taken and also WHEN because the metadata have been tempered with. The WH of course have NO CREDIBILITY whatsoever, being a cover for the massive „strategic information" (incessantly demonizing Assad) created by MI6, who also ran the massive PR for the artificial „rebels" in Syria. (See voltairenet.org for more on this).

And yet this is the basis for the „assessment" of the French govt. They write that
„French experts have analyzed the symptoms (visible in the pics and vids) which can be described as follows (respiratory distress, asphyxiation, cyanosis, skin-burns, excessive salivation, etc.) Taken together, these symptoms are characteristic für a CW-attack, especially for suffocating-agents. The use of asthma-sprays supports the thesis that such agents were used."

So instead of a forensic examination and autopsy, all we get is an interpretation of symptoms to fit the frame of the Assad-gasses-his-own-people horror-narrative. To this, they add statements from anonymous people working (in Douma) for medical NGOs like UOSSM (created in France in 2011, PR-front group) and SAMS (US directed front group) who claim that about a hundred people „stormed" their health facilities in Douma and at least 40 died as a result of the CW-attack.

They use medical staff of course as „CREDIBILITY-ENHANCERS" because in general people tend to trust doctors, nurses and paramedics, hence the „White Helmets" (and the faux „nurse" telling the heat-wrenchning, invented tale of the incubator-babies in Iraq)
I asked a friend who works for one of the biggest chemical companies in Germany (BASF) about the symptoms and he said they are consistent with a chlorine-exposure but that does NOT mean that it could ONLY have been chlorine. Very similar symptoms occur when people have been exposed to SMOKE-INHALATION (German: Rauchgasvergiftung)

And now it gets really interesting because a video has been released by Russian and Syrian TV stations in which two medical students who work for the emergency department of the Douma hospital, say that the people shown in the WH-video had indeed been exposed to SMOKE-INHALATION. (see links below)

A house in Douma had been hit by an airstrike which caused a fire in the lower floors and the partial collapse of the upper floors. So these people had breathing difficulties and were taken to the emergency dept of the hospital where they were given first aid. Suddenly some men appeared and shouted „this was a gas-attack!". They then began to douse the patients with cold water (from a hose), which caused panic (children screamed of course). These „dramatic" scenes were filmed then the strangers disappeared as quickly as they had arrived.

I cannot verify if these medical students told the truth, but given the political context, I have much more reason to believe them than the White Helmets or the French DGSE.

Just one more thing, the brochure from BASF about the dangers of chlorine contains one sentence that caught my eye:

„Wasser verstärkt die oxidative und ätzende Wirkung von Chlor"
(Water exacerbates the corrosive effect of chlorine (because hydrochlorid acid is formed through the moisture

So why would medical experts then hose down these alleged „chlorine" victims? Of course they would not. So this too, seems to show that the whole scene was staged.

Cassandra , Apr 17, 2018 2:08:32 PM | 7
Pt.2: WHY WOULD ASSAD DO IT?

The French govt also argues that the use of CW in East-Ghouta was both in a tactical and strategical sense a military stroke of genius but I'll spare you the BS except for one argument:

The „strategic" aspect was that Assad wanted to punish the civilians in „rebel-held" areas and by creating „terreur et panic" they achieved their aim of surrender.

„Because the war is not over for Assad, he wants to demonstrate thru these ruthless attacks, that resistance is futile "

This is baloney of course because the Russians and the SAA are winning and have painstakingly negotiated with the „rebels" and arranged for them to be evacuated in buses to Idlib. (Can anyone imagine the US-military doing such a thing after 7yrs of war?)

AND President Assad knows very well that the civilians in rebel-held areas were captives, treated like slaves, starved for food (sold by the rebels at exorbitant prices) and brutally executed if they refused to live under Sharia-law. So there was absolutely no need to „punish" them for anything.

(„Good heavens!") fmr. British military brass (even SF) now disagree with the French „evaluation" and their own government:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5616533/Former-head-Britains-special-forces-says-Assad-doesnt-need-use-gas.html

but the French stick to their surreal script .

„Given the operational situation in Eastern-Ghouta on April 7, we estimate with high-confidence that the responsibility (for the non-existent CW-attack) can be attributed to the Syrian Regime".
(Sound familiar?)

And finally they put in this „disclaimer" when they say

„Les services francaises are not in the possession of any information which would support the thesis, that these armed groups in East-Ghouta have endeavored to acquire CW for themselves or that they were already available to them."/BLOCKQUOTE>

(Now that is a BIG Lie even the MSM knows that the "rebels" have used CW (i.e.in Aleppo see Scott Ritter on this, Carla del Ponte, Seymour Hersh, Vanessa Beeley, etc.)

„Furthermore we regard a manipulation of the released pictures as implausible, because the groups present in Ghouta had no access to the means necessary to exercise a communication-manouver of this magnitude"

this absurd claim does not even deserve a comment )

The biggest lie comes at the end when they claim that

Assad has not declared all his CW to the OPCW,
has kept a clandestine CW-programm all the time (since 2013
has intensified the use of CW continually and that the Russians are in on this.

And then follow the (by now familiar) highly-manipulative phrases which are supposed to be imprinted on our brains now:

Undoubtedly a chemical attack was launched against civilians on April 7 in Douma
There is no other plausible scenario then the action of the SAA as part of a major offensive to retake East-Ghouta
Russia has undeniably actively supported these operations and the clandestine policy of the SARG for the use of CW

Sources:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=56&v=Q5HULURIyas
https://www.emedicinehealth.com/smoke_inhalation/article_em.htm#when_to_see_a_doctor_for_smoke_inhalation
https://www.basf.com/documents/corp/de/sustainability/employees/occupational-medicine/medical-guidelines/Chlor_D_BASF_medLeitlinien_D003.pdf (German)
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/syria-chemical-attack-al-qaeda-played-donald-trump_us_58ea226fe4b058f0a02fca4d (Scott Ritter)

WJ , Apr 17, 2018 2:07:22 PM | 6 Cassandra , Apr 17, 2018 2:08:32 PM | 7
Pt.2: WHY WOULD ASSAD DO IT?

The French govt also argues that the use of CW in East-Ghouta was both in a tactical and strategical sense a military stroke of genius but I'll spare you the BS except for one argument:

The „strategic" aspect was that Assad wanted to punish the civilians in „rebel-held" areas and by creating „terreur et panic" they achieved their aim of surrender.

„Because the war is not over for Assad, he wants to demonstrate thru these ruthless attacks, that resistance is futile "

This is baloney of course because the Russians and the SAA are winning and have painstakingly negotiated with the „rebels" and arranged for them to be evacuated in buses to Idlib. (Can anyone imagine the US-military doing such a thing after 7yrs of war?)

AND President Assad knows very well that the civilians in rebel-held areas were captives, treated like slaves, starved for food (sold by the rebels at exorbitant prices) and brutally executed if they refused to live under Sharia-law. So there was absolutely no need to „punish" them for anything.

(„Good heavens!") fmr. British military brass (even SF) now disagree with the French „evaluation" and their own government:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5616533/Former-head-Britains-special-forces-says-Assad-doesnt-need-use-gas.html

but the French stick to their surreal script .

„Given the operational situation in Eastern-Ghouta on April 7, we estimate with high-confidence that the responsibility (for the non-existent CW-attack) can be attributed to the Syrian Regime".
(Sound familiar?)

And finally they put in this „disclaimer" when they say

„Les services francaises are not in the possession of any information which would support the thesis, that these armed groups in East-Ghouta have endeavored to acquire CW for themselves or that they were already available to them."/BLOCKQUOTE>

(Now that is a BIG Lie even the MSM knows that the "rebels" have used CW (i.e.in Aleppo see Scott Ritter on this, Carla del Ponte, Seymour Hersh, Vanessa Beeley, etc.)

„Furthermore we regard a manipulation of the released pictures as implausible, because the groups present in Ghouta had no access to the means necessary to exercise a communication-manouver of this magnitude"

this absurd claim does not even deserve a comment )

The biggest lie comes at the end when they claim that

Assad has not declared all his CW to the OPCW,
has kept a clandestine CW-programm all the time (since 2013
has intensified the use of CW continually and that the Russians are in on this.

And then follow the (by now familiar) highly-manipulative phrases which are supposed to be imprinted on our brains now:

Undoubtedly a chemical attack was launched against civilians on April 7 in Douma
There is no other plausible scenario then the action of the SAA as part of a major offensive to retake East-Ghouta
Russia has undeniably actively supported these operations and the clandestine policy of the SARG for the use of CW

Sources:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=56&v=Q5HULURIyas
https://www.emedicinehealth.com/smoke_inhalation/article_em.htm#when_to_see_a_doctor_for_smoke_inhalation
https://www.basf.com/documents/corp/de/sustainability/employees/occupational-medicine/medical-guidelines/Chlor_D_BASF_medLeitlinien_D003.pdf (German)
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/syria-chemical-attack-al-qaeda-played-donald-trump_us_58ea226fe4b058f0a02fca4d (Scott Ritter)

Piotr Berman , Apr 17, 2018 2:42:02 PM | 15
Re: but the French stick to their surreal script .

„Given the operational situation in Eastern-Ghouta on April 7, we estimate with high-confidence that the responsibility (for the non-existent CW-attack) can be attributed to the Syrian Regime".

I guess this is a matter of national pride and tradition. They invented surrealism after all. Although "we estimate with high-confidence that" could be also impressionistic: impressions are the higher truth.

Re: otherwise they could get Skripaled. ??? Does it mean "Do what we say if you do not want to share the fate of your pets", slow, painful death?

WJ , Apr 17, 2018 2:53:06 PM | 19
@15,

Yes. We are all just Guinea Pigs to Putin!

UOSSM looks to be a prime front for French military intelligence. Perhaps their recent "testimony" is not unrelated to the problems Macron
is having spelling out what, exactly, the French intelligence confirming the attack amounts to.

The thing is, France, if you want to play with the big boys here, you first need to do a much better job of impoverishing your citizens, lowering the level of their education, worsening their health care, and removing all domestic safety nets to the extent that you can.

Your citizens are uppity and skeptical because they have the relative leisure to think. Remove from them this leisure, and then they too will believe.

You moron.

English Outsider , Apr 17, 2018 11:24:46 PM | 78
Castellio@52

You say -

"Then, if you do find a distinction there: where's the distinction between "arming and training in the field" and "directing and assisting"?"

Unless we're logic chopping I have to confess I can find none. I think Putin's noble but as yet ineffectual UN Speech - "Do you even now not realise what you have done?" - will search us home in the coming years, as the facts of what we have done or caused to be done in Syria surface.

Many years ago I read an account by a young woman in Germany of her experiences up to 1945. Melitta Maschman had been a convinced Nazi and proud of the achievements of the Nazi years. That pride shines through her account, even though the account was written long after she had rejected her earlier convictions. Those convictions had been real enough too. From memory - I don't choose to read the book again - she was one of the few who attempted to keep the fight going even after the end of the war.

Melitta Maschman had a journey to make. Slowly, after the war, she had to come to terms with the fact that the time she had been so proud of was a time of horror. That the fighting men whose achievements she had been so proud of were also implicated in - or responsible for, as you imply the distinction is hair-splitting - the atrocities of the Eastern Front.

I think her account might have been genuine, as was her post-war rejection, though of course one can never tell from a book. Genuine or not, on a less dramatic, less monumental scale, that's the journey English and American patriots must slowly prepare for too. You must not be too critical if some of us are still reluctant to make that journey.

Thank you for your reply.

[Apr 18, 2018] US Says Russia Hacked Syrian Attack Evidence As Russia Finds Rebel Chemical Weapon Lab

Apr 18, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Update : Interfax reports that the Russian military has discovered a rebel-owned chemical weapons lab in Douma.

The Russian Defense Ministry says that components for Mustard Gas production were discovered along with cylinders of chlorine at a alb belonging to militants in Douma.

Additionally, Moscow has said it is stunned by a French statement that Russia is obstructing OPCW experts from entering Syria's Douma (echoing Ambassador Ward's). the Russian foreign ministry confirms OPCW expoerts are already in Douma.

* * *

And on the game goes...

While Russia's foreign ministry warns that Western powers are interfering with OPCW's work in Syria (noting that the chemical weapons experts' access to Douma is being hampered by remaining militants, supported by Washington), as Caitlin Johnstone details , we are now being told by US officials (and I assure you I am not making this up) that if the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons doesn't find evidence that the Syrian government conducted a chemical weapons attack in Douma last week, it's because Russia hid the evidence .

"It is our understanding the Russians may have visited the attack site," reports U.S. Ambassador Kenneth Ward.

"It is our concern that they may have tampered with it with the intent of thwarting the efforts of the OPCW Fact-Finding Mission to conduct an effective investigation."

Via Caitlin Johnstone,

I guess the idea is that this international top-level investigative team on which tremendous credibility has been placed by the western world can be thwarted by Russians showing up with a Hoover and spraying some Febreze in the air like a teenage stoner when mom comes home? I'm not sure, but given the immense dearth of evidence we've been seeing in support of the establishment Douma narrative and the mounting pile of evidence contradicting it, it sure does sound fishy.

Now that the jihadist-occupied suburb of Douma has been retaken by the Syrian government, western journalists have been allowed in to poke around and start asking questions, and so far it isn't looking great for the propaganda machine .

The Independent 's Robert Fisk has published a report which affirms the story so many westerners have been dismissing as Kremlin propaganda for days now after interviewing a doctor from the hospital of the area where the Douma attack was supposed to have occurred. Dr Assim Rahaibani told Fisk that what was in actuality an outbreak of respiratory distress among occupants of a dusty oxygen-deprived tunnel was made to look like the aftereffects of a chemical weapons attack when a member of the White Helmets started shouting about a gas attack in front of a bunch of video cameras. Everyone panicked and started hosing themselves down, but in the video, according to Rahaibani, "what you see are people suffering from hypoxia  --  not gas poisoning."

This report was independently backed up by a reporter from One America News Network named Pearson Sharp, who gave a detailed account of his interviews with officials, doctors, as well as many civilians on the street Sharp says he deliberately selected at random in order to avoid accusations of bias. Many people hadn't even heard that a chemical weapons attack had taken place, and the ones who had said it was staged by Jaysh al-Islam. The staff at the hospital, including a medic-in-training who was an eyewitness to the incident, gave the same story as the account in Fisk's report.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/lSXwG-901yU

The increasing confidence with which these unapproved narratives are being voiced and the increasing discomfort being exhibited by empire loyalists like Ambassador Ward indicate a weakening narrative in the greater propaganda campaign against the Assad government and its allies, but don't hold your breath for the part where Fox News and the BBC turn around and start asking critical questions of the governments that they are meant to be holding to account.

The journalists who have been advancing the establishment narrative on Syria aren't about to start reporting that they've gotten the entire Syria story assballs backward and have been promoting a version of events manufactured for the benefit of CIA-MI6-Mossad agendas. You're not about to see CNN, who last year staged a fake scripted interview with a seven year-old Syrian girl to manufacture support for escalations against Assad, suddenly turn around and start asking if we're being told the full story about what's happening Syria.

Watch them closely. Watch how they steadfastly ignore the growing mountain of evidence and keep promoting the Syrian regime change agenda that the western empire has been working toward for decades . Watch them dismiss all evidence they can't ignore as Kremlin propaganda and shift the narrative whenever things start to look bad for them. Those riding the crest of the wave of establishment media are too far gone into the blob to ever admit error and change. The least among us aren't about to stop constructing a public reality tunnel which depicts them as heroes of truth, tear it all down, and start advancing a narrative which makes them look like fools at best and villains at worst. It will not happen.

Luckily for us, it doesn't need to. Internet censorship is still far from closing the door on our ability to network and share information, and we've been very effective at sowing skepticism among the masses. The war propagandists are not nearly as good at their jobs as they want to believe, and we can beat them.

They work so hard to manufacture support for war because they require that consent. If the oligarchs try to launch a war against a disobedient nation amidst very clear opposition from the public, they will shatter the illusion of freedom and democracy that their entire empire is built upon, and then they're exposed. Corporatist oligarchy has succeeded in weaving its web of dominance because its oppression has thus far remained hidden and its depravity disguised as humanitarianism. They cannot expose themselves by transgressing a loud NO from the public or else the masses will realize that everything they used to believe about their country, their government and their world is a lie.

They won't risk that. We can force them into retreating from open war by circulating facts and information and keeping a healthy level of skepticism circulating among the public. Watch them squirm, move goalposts and shift narratives, and point and yell about it whenever it happens. We can win the media war against the propagandists. We have truth on our side.

* * *

Internet censorship is getting pretty bad, so best way to keep seeing my daily articles is to get on the mailing list for my website , so you'll get an email notification for everything I publish. My articles and podcasts are entirely reader and listener-funded, so if you enjoyed this piece please consider sharing it around, liking me on Facebook , following my antics on Twitter , checking out my podcast , throwing some money into my hat on Patreon or Paypal , or buying my new book Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers .


Give Me Some Truth -> Dickweed Wang Tue, 04/17/2018 - 12:42 Permalink

That fact-finding body (OPCW) could change the whole paradigm IF it finds conclusive evidence this was a false flag event, and IF they trumpet their findings to the world, and IF people get all the real ramifications of such a potential finding/announcement.

This said, I fully expect their "findings" to be a masterpiece of ambiguous language and weaslespeak.

This body after all is a creation of politicians and bureaucrats answering to many governments. They, almost certainly, will "punt."

... But if by some miracle they don't ...

adonisdemilo -> Give Me Some Truth Tue, 04/17/2018 - 13:02 Permalink

@Give Me Some Truth,

The OPCW had better release their findings if they contradict the "official" narrative before they fly out from Douma as they could well end up like the passengers on MH17.

That in itself will be another problem because the "good guys" will know within minutes that Russia did it.

BarkingCat -> Give Me Some Truth Tue, 04/17/2018 - 13:03 Permalink

"No conlusive evidence was found" will be the finding which either side can spin to their desire.

Russia - there is no evidence so there was no attack

US - the evidence was no conclusive but only because enough time has passed that it degraded to the point where a good sample could not be located.....and Russia kept the inspectors from the site in order for this to happen.

No minds will be changed.

[Apr 18, 2018] British government humor: what take us in Salisbury million of pound and several months Russians can do in Douma in one day

Apr 18, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Posted by: Tom | Apr 17, 2018 11:35:38 PM | 14 8

I saw an interesting tweet over at Charles Shoebridge. " To be clear, I don't dispute that as UK govt says cleaning up nerve agent may 'cost millions and take months'. But I do dispute that the same UK govt and media saying this can also with any consistency then suggest Russia has cleaned up Douma in just a few days. Jihadists claim that sarin was used as well as chlorine.

[Apr 17, 2018] Trump mulls Syria strike as Russia accuses Britain of staging alleged chemical attack

Was the goal of the attack to initiate Russia turkey split? If so the attack was very nasty, has typical for British imperial provocations sophistication, and was pretty successful.
Notable quotes:
"... Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said images of victims of the purported attack were staged with "Britain's direct involvement." ..."
Apr 13, 2018 | www.chicagotribune.com

...The Kremlin said Russian President Vladimir Putin spoke with Macron and the two leaders agreed to coordinate their actions to avoid further military escalation in Syria. It was unclear how this might influence the direction of events.

Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said images of victims of the purported attack were staged with "Britain's direct involvement." He provided no evidence.

[Apr 17, 2018] Trump's Attack on Syria Shows the US Still Considers Itself a Global Policeman by Katrina vanden Heuvel

As Global times put it: "One of the major characteristics of the Trump administration's diplomacy is willfulness and recklessness, as if the all-mighty US has the right to do everything. However, the stronger a country is, the greater the responsibility it has to maintain world peace and order."
Apr 17, 2018 | www.thenation.com

Trump's Attack on Syria Shows the US Still Considers Itself a Global Policeman | The Nation The attack demonstrates that the United States still considers itself to be not simply the indispensable nation but a global policeman above the law. With the president claiming the right to use military force anywhere without congressional authorization -- and Congress so supine that, with few honorable exceptions, it does not object -- and the foreign-policy establishment across the board claiming the right to use force in direct, open, and arrogant violation of international law, we have reached the point where the US president acts as cop, judge, jury, and executioner.

With this president, of course, illegality has become the norm. Trump and our allies unleashed the attack even as the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) was traveling to Syria to provide an independent, authoritative investigation of the attack on Douma and determine whether or not in fact chemical weapons were used, and if so, by whom. Trump preferred, in Alice in Wonderland fashion, sentence first, verdict after.

To protect the Syrian people from the horrors of alleged chemical-weapons use, we unleash missiles and bombs on the Syrian people. To enforce an alleged -- and, if true, grotesque -- violation of the international chemical-weapons ban, we trample the international ban on wars of aggression. Yes, yes, Trump says the mission was "perfect," and called it -- in an absurd echo of George W. Bush's infamous 2003 pronouncement about the Iraq War -- "mission accomplished." The media feature the tactical questions of how and what and when. We hear all the usual nonsense about smart weapons, surgical bombing.

This raid -- celebrated by neocons and their liberal interventionist allies alike -- derives from America's unipolar moment after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Then the heady liberal interventionists decided, in Madeleine Albright's words , that the United States was the "indispensable nation," that we could act because "we stand tall and we see further than other countries into the future." From that came the arrogant assumption that the United States could scorn the same international laws that it had championed at Nuremberg after World War II.

Former State Department official Anne Marie Slaughter spoke for the bipartisan consensus when she tweeted, "I believe that the US, UK & France did the right thing by striking Syria over chemical weapons . [even] if it is illegal under international law. But it at least draws a line somewhere & says enough."

We have arrogated to ourselves the right to attack other sovereign countries when they offend our judgments of proper behavior -- about human rights, against civil war on the European continent, against chemical weapons. Of course, we do not attack our allies such as Saudi Arabia in Yemen, or Israel in Gaza for engaging in such activities.

... ... ...

Seeing growing violence in Syria -- sparked by revolt generated by Assad's brutal reign -- Obama decided that like Ben Ali in Tunisia and Hosni Mubarak in Egypt, Assad must go. Even though Assad posed no threat to the United States, Obama dispatched the CIA and Special Forces to train and arm the insurgency against Assad. But many of those arms, ostensibly intended for "democratic" rebel forces, ended up in the hands of ISIS and other terror groups. The conflicts between Assad, Sunnis, Shiites, Kurds, Turks, and Persians grew more complex. Iran and Russia came to the aid of a sovereign head of state that the United States, in conjunction with its Gulf "allies," had been waging aggressive war to topple.

Hundreds of thousands of Syrians have been killed; millions uprooted...

Katrina vanden Heuvel is editor and publisher of The Nation.

[Apr 17, 2018] Winners and losers in Trump's Syria attack

Notable quotes:
"... In the absence of a coherent US strategy toward Syria, this latest attack may even stoke the fires of Syrian nationalism. ..."
"... Of course, new regional alignments will become inevitable. Turkey and Israel have backed the US attack. ( here ) The Turks' bazari instincts are legion and President Recep Erdogan senses a historic opportunity to project Turkish power into Syria and realize his "neo-Ottoman" dream. Trust him to overreach. ..."
"... Israel is a bit down due to the messy confrontation at the Gaza border ; or else, it would have jumped into the fray. Israel's best bet will be that the US keeps an open-ended military presence in a Syria that is balkanized and weak and is in no position to reclaim the lost territory in the Golan Heights that are under Israeli occupation since 1967. ..."
"... Tehran has hinted at "regional consequences." But Iran's style will be to avoid direct conflict with the US and opt instead to intensify its political work and consolidate its wide networking with various groups on the ground, which systematically keep undermining the US presence in Syria and Iraq. No doubt, Iran will intensify the politics of "resistance" against Israel. ..."
Apr 17, 2018 | blogs.rediff.com

The US President Donald Trump's mind took a fourth U-turn in almost as many days on Friday since he began speaking about his decision to withdraw the American forces from Syria and leave it to "others" to handle the endgame in the conflict. He swung to the extreme threatening a rain of missiles on Syria, only to back-track a day later to hint there might not be any attack at all, and finally to announce a joint US-UK-France attack on Friday.

If the former US Deputy Secretary of State Nicholas Burns, an experienced career diplomat, got the impression that POTUS was playing a video game, it comes as no surprise. Indeed, the most striking thing about the US strike on Syria is its futility of purpose beyond a symbolic value to impress the domestic constituency that POTUS is a forceful decision-maker, who unlike his predecessor Barack Obama, lays down 'red lines' and follows up.

Actually, it is a cowardly stance. Trump hastened to strike just hours before the investigation by the team from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons was due to begin in Douma – as if time was running out to act with impunity. Clearly, Trump felt the compulsion to be seen acting. He had no authorization from the Congress nor did he secure a mandate from the UN Security Council to launch aggression against a UN member country.

The indignation and outrage in the statement by the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres will be widely shared by the world community:

"There's an obligation, particularly when dealing with matters of peace and security, to act consistently with the Charter of the United Nations and with international law in general. The UN Charter is very clear on these issues.

"The Security Council has primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security. I call on the members of the Security Council to unite and exercise that responsibility. I urge all Member States to show restraint in these dangerous circumstances and to avoid any acts that could escalate the situation and worsen the suffering of the Syrian people."

Both the constitutionality of Trump's decision and the legality of the US attack under international law is highly questionable . However, the extenuating fact is that historically, the domestic public opinion rallies behind the POTUS when the US is at war abroad. For Trump's crumbling presidency, that is an over-riding consideration today.

On the other hand, the attack on Syria was carefully choreographed. Paris has disclosed that Moscow was informed in advance. Indeed, "deconfliction" proceedures were under discussion between the Pentagon and Russian Defence Ministry for the past 2-3 days. The attack clinically targeted alleged chemical weapon sites in three cities in Syria – Damascus, Hom and Hama. No military bases or assets were attacked. The missiles scrupulously avoided locations where there could be Russian personnel. Care was taken to avoid "collateral damage". In fact, there has been no reported casualty. On the whole, it is as if a riveting fireworks show has been conducted.

The Syrians claim they shot down a number of incoming missiles. But like in the Sherlock Holmes story, the dog didn't bark – not a single move has been reported by Russia to intercept the incoming missiles. Moscow simply watched a brawl unfold between the US, UK and France on one side and the Syrian regime on the other. Moscow instead turned on its propaganda apparatus to take the maximum advantage of the senseless, almost bizarre missile attack. If the OPCW team turns in a 'Nil' report from Douma shortly, Russian propaganda can be trusted to go for Trump's jugular veins.

The US attack will not create any new facts on the ground. The comprehensive victory of the Syrian regime of President Bashar Al-Assad in the 7-year conflict is becoming an irreversible reality. Arguably, this could be the last waltz of the western interventionist powers in Syria who had hoped to overthrow the regime and failed miserably. In the absence of a coherent US strategy toward Syria, this latest attack may even stoke the fires of Syrian nationalism.

Russia has spoken of "serious consequences", without elaborating. Will Russia escalate the situation? Seems unlikely. It is hard to see a Russian reaction on the ground – although Moscow is watchful that the western strategy ultimately threatens the Russian presence in Syria. Much depends on the next western move. The NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg is expected in Ankara on Monday.

In a strongly-worded statement, President Vladimir Putin has warned that the "escalation in Syria is destructive for the entire system of international relations. History will set things right, and Washington already bears the heavy responsibility for the bloody outrage in Yugoslavia, Iraq and Syria." Russia proposes to convene an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council "to discuss the aggressive actions by the US and its allies," Putin said.

Of course, new regional alignments will become inevitable. Turkey and Israel have backed the US attack. ( here ) The Turks' bazari instincts are legion and President Recep Erdogan senses a historic opportunity to project Turkish power into Syria and realize his "neo-Ottoman" dream. Trust him to overreach.

Israel is a bit down due to the messy confrontation at the Gaza border ; or else, it would have jumped into the fray. Israel's best bet will be that the US keeps an open-ended military presence in a Syria that is balkanized and weak and is in no position to reclaim the lost territory in the Golan Heights that are under Israeli occupation since 1967.

All eyes are on Iran. But Tehran will not speak its mind . Tehran's eyes are cast on the May 12 deadline when Trump must decide on the sanctions waiver to the July 2015 nuclear deal. The big question now is whether Trump would tear up the Iran nuclear deal in the present circumstances when the US needs the support of its European allies.

Syria constitutes Iran's defense line. Significantly, even as Trump was ratcheting up rhetoric against Syria, the powerful Iranian statesman Ali Akbar Velayati, advisor to Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei landed in Damascus on Wednesday, met President Assad and toured Douma, the alleged site of the chemical attack. It was a defiant gesture and act of solidarity with Assad.

Tehran has hinted at "regional consequences." But Iran's style will be to avoid direct conflict with the US and opt instead to intensify its political work and consolidate its wide networking with various groups on the ground, which systematically keep undermining the US presence in Syria and Iraq. No doubt, Iran will intensify the politics of "resistance" against Israel.

The Russia-Iran partnership in Syria is steadily morphing into an alliance, which is in mutual interests. The defeat of the US-Israeli-Saudi containment strategy against Iran may turn out to be the most significant and enduring outcome of this US attack on Syria.

Posted in Diplomacy , Military , Politics .

Tagged with Iran , Russia , Syria , Turkey , UN .

No comments "

By M K BhadrakumarApril 14, 2018

[Apr 17, 2018] Trump opens a Pandora's box in Middle East

Notable quotes:
"... Col.-Gen. Rudskoi chose his words carefully by hinting that Russia could also supply countries other than Syria (eg., Venezuela, North Korea, Lebanon, Iraq, etc.) The remark stems from President Vladimir Putin's hugely significant statement on Saturday regarding US attack on Syria when he said, inter alia: "The current escalation around Syria is destructive for the entire system of international relations. History will set things right " ..."
"... Trump's impetuosity to attack Syria is in defiance of the international system and it may open a Pandora's box. Ironically, Israel, as "frontline state", has the highest stakes if the unwritten understanding between the US and Russia unravels. (Moscow had collaborated with the Barack Obama administration and Israel to slow down the supply of S-300 missiles to Iran.) Equally, Turkey will have to think twice before venturing into further land grab in Syria if Damascus regains control of its air space. ..."
"... The Israeli think tank The Institute for National Security Studies had done a very informative paper in 2013 entitled Syria, Russia, and the S-300: Military and Technical Background. ..."
Apr 17, 2018 | blogs.rediff.com

There is no triumphalism in the US, Britain or France over the missile strike in Syria on Friday. The mood is rather defensive. Indeed, evidence is still lacking on the alleged chemical attacks in Douma, which was the alibi for the missile strike. There are no tall claims, either, as regards the effectiveness of the missile strike in military terms.

On the contrary, Damascus is in upbeat mood. April 14 has been declared a day of celebrations. After all, the Syrian forces single-handedly faced the Western assault. The Russian reports underscore that Syrian air defence system was highly effective. The Defence Ministry said in Moscow on Saturday that there haven't been any Syrian casualty. Moscow attests that the Syrians shot down as many as 71 missiles out of the total 103 fired by the US, UK and France. Neither Washington nor London and Paris has so far contradicted the Russian assessment.

President Donald Trump is the solitary voice crowing about the missile attack. He tweeted bombastically: