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[Dec 31, 2019] Skripals false flag and Russiagate are birds of the feather

Notable quotes:
"... If the CIA/MI6/FBI did attempt to create a sting it need not be as dramatic as the Skripal fakery. What would you dream up if you were tasked by the CIA to propose something? KISS. ..."
Dec 31, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

librul , Dec 29 2019 22:21 utc | 28

@Posted by: sleepy | Dec 29 2019 17:38 utc | 8

Thanks sleeply,

But underlying your comment is an assumption of *logic* in this world. If it ever existed it certainly does not apply any longer. Look how much mileage the MSM and the anti-Democracy Party got out of the nothingburger Russiagate.

The MSM doesn't even need to smell real blood, they will run with anything to continue the coup.

Anything negative that involves Edward Gallagher between now and election day could be magnified 1 million-fold and
repeated 1000 million times by the MSM and dropped in Trump's lap.

If the CIA/MI6/FBI did attempt to create a sting it need not be as dramatic as the Skripal fakery. What would you dream up if you were tasked by the CIA to propose something? KISS.

[Dec 31, 2019] Skripals false flag and Russiagate are birds of the feather

Dec 31, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

librul , Dec 29 2019 22:21 utc | 28

@Posted by: sleepy | Dec 29 2019 17:38 utc | 8

Thanks sleeply,
But underlying your comment is an assumption of *logic* in this world. If it ever existed it certainly does not
apply any longer. Look how much mileage the MSM and the anti-Democracy Party got out of the nothingburger Russiagate.
The MSM doesn't even need to smell real blood, they will run with anything to continue the coup.

Anything negative that involves Edward Gallagher between now and election day could be magnified 1 million-fold and
repeated 1000 million times by the MSM and dropped in Trump's lap.

If the CIA/MI6/FBI did attempt to create a sting it need not be as dramatic as the Skripal fakery. What would you dream up if you were tasked by the CIA to propose something? KISS.

[Dec 31, 2019] Abuse of UN by CIA connected jihadist groups

Dec 31, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Russia has received a lot of criticism over the bombing of alleged 'hospitals' in Syria which were registered on a UN sponsored list. The Russian military argued that the positions on the UN list were not of real hospitals but of ammunition depots or command centers of the Jihadists. After it had published dozens of articles bashing Russia's campaign the New York Times has finally admitted that Russia was right:

The U.N. Tried to Save Hospitals in Syria. It Didn't Work.

United Nations officials only recently created a unit to verify locations provided by relief groups that managed the exempt sites, some of which had been submitted incorrectly, The Times found. Such instances of misinformation give credibility to Russian criticisms that the system cannot be trusted and is vulnerable to misuse.
...
The groups give locations of their own choosing to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, the agency that runs the system.

A document prepared by the agency warned that participation in the system "does not guarantee" the safety of the sites or their personnel. The document also stated that the United Nations would not verify information provided by participating groups.
...
While investigating an airstrike in November, The Times discovered that a relief group had provided coordinates for its health center that were around 240 meters away. When another hospital was bombed in May, The Times found that the coordinates submitted by its supporting organization pointed to an unrelated structure around 765 meters north.

After questions from The Times prompted the organization to review its deconfliction list, a staff member discovered that it had provided the United Nations with incorrect locations for 14 of its 19 deconflicted sites . The original locations had been logged by a pharmacist. The list had been with the United Nations humanitarian agency for eight months, and no one had contacted the organization to correct the locations, a member of the organization's staff said.

Use as open thread ...

Posted by b at 15:42 UTC | Comments (65)

[Dec 29, 2019] Mike Figueroa from The Humanist Report has got a bunch of angry leftists hating on Tulsi Gabbard for her Christmas greeting today on twitter and youtube,

Imbecilization of discussion of controversial issues like in case of your comment is a normal development typical for the periods of intellectual declines which naturally follows the economic decline of a given empire.
There's growing evidence the West is going through the same process as the USSR.
Dec 29, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org
Kali , Dec 29 2019 2:52 utc | 49
Mike Figueroa from The Humanist Report has got a bunch of angry leftists hating on Tulsi Gabbard for her Christmas greeting today on twitter and youtube, they are claiming Tulsi is "too religious" or "she is pandering to evangelicals." They have gone insane obviously and are hating on Tulsi for other reasons (she dares challenge Bernie for president). Pam Ho breaks it all down for you at Like, In The Year 2024

TJ , Dec 28 2019 18:10 utc | 10

OPCW-DOUMA - Release Part 4

We now have Voldemorts real name, Sebastien Braha.

augrr , Dec 29 2019 0:10 utc | 39
Re #10

Voldemort is on LinkedIn. I wanted to congratulate him on his ethics (NOT) but did not have the status with LinkedIn required to email someone.

Perhaps someone else in the bar could send him a message - needs to be a premium member.

psychohistorian , Dec 29 2019 5:53 utc | 61
Below is a link to a Catlin Johnstone link about the latest Wikileaks dump about OPCW and who Voldemort is

Media's Deafening Silence On Latest WikiLeaks Drops Is Its Own Scandal

The take away quote
"
Up until the OPCW leaks, WikiLeaks drops always made mainstream news headlines. Everyone remembers how the 2016 news cycle was largely dominated by leaked Democratic Party emails emerging from the outlet. Even the relatively minor ICE agents publication by WikiLeaks last year, containing information that was already public, garnered headlines from top US outlets like The Washington Post , Newsweek, and USA Today. Now, on this exponentially more important story, zero coverage.

The mass media's stone-dead silence on the OPCW scandal is becoming its own scandal, of equal or perhaps even greater significance than the OPCW scandal itself. It opens up a whole litany of questions which have tremendous importance for every citizen of the western world; questions like, how are people supposed to participate in democracy if all the outlets they normally turn to to make informed voting decisions adamantly refuse to tell them about the existence of massive news stories like the OPCW scandal? How are people meant to address such conspiracies of silence when there is no mechanism in place to hold the entire mass media to account for its complicity in it? And by what mechanism are all these outlets unifying in that conspiracy of silence?
"

[Dec 29, 2019] A Newsweek Reporter Resigns, a Counter-Narrative Won't Die by Scott Ritter

Dec 27, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Is the media suppressing evidence that the 2018 chemical 'attack' in Syria didn't happen the way officials said it did? It is perhaps the least reported media scandal about the least reported international controversy in recent times -- the resignation of Tareq Haddad , a well-regarded journalist from Newsweek , a mainstay of the mainstream media.

At issue was what he said regarding the magazine's refusal to cover the scandal unfolding within the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) . Evidence has been building for some time that the OPCW cooked the books in its investigation of alleged chemical weapons use in the Syrian town of Douma on April 7, 2018. These allegations served as the justification for a subsequent joint U.S.-U.K.-France attack against suspected chemical weapons targets inside Syria, despite the fact that the OPCW had yet to inspect the Douma location, let alone issue a report on its findings.

In an announcement on Twitter , Haddad declared, "I resigned from Newsweek after my attempts to publish newsworthy revelations about the leaked OPCW letter were refused for no valid reason," adding , "I have collected evidence of how they [the OPCW] suppressed the story in addition to evidence from another case where info inconvenient to US govt was removed, though it was factually correct." Haddad further noted that he had been threatened by Newsweek with legal action if he sought to publish his findings elsewhere.

The OPCW's Douma investigation has been under a cloud of controversy since shortly after its interim report was released to the public in early March 2019. The document was prepared by Ian Henderson , an engineer working for the OPCW. It challenged the conclusions of the inspection team regarding the provenance of two chlorine canisters located at the incident scene, and was leaked to the press.

The document, which the OPCW subsequently declared to be genuine, raised the probability that the canisters had been manually placed at the scene, as opposed to having been dropped by the Syrian Air Force, raising the question as to whether the entire Douma incident had been staged.

Haddad's story, however, was not about Ian Henderson's report, but rather a series of new documents , backed up by an inspector-turned-whistleblower known only as "Alex," that accused the OPCW leadership of ignoring the findings of its own inspectors in favor of a revisionist report prepared by another team of inspectors based out of Turkey. This second group allegedly relied heavily on data and witnesses provided by the Syrian Civil Defense (the "White Helmets") and the Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS), two ostensibly humanitarian organizations opposed to the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Haddad's new sources emerged after the publication of the OPCW's final report on the Douma incident in July 2019 . That document concluded that chlorine had been used as a weapon at Douma, likely via chlorine canisters dropped from aircraft -- making the Syrian government solely responsible and legitimizing the U.S.-led aerial attacks.

The leaked material was verified by interviews to select reporters (possibly including Haddad, who is seeking whistleblower-like protection from Newsweek ) by "Alex," who claims to have been part of the Douma investigation. The narrative that emerges from a cursory examination of this new data is damning -- the OPCW suppressed the findings of the investigation team, which concluded that chlorine had not been used as a weapon at Douma. The OPCW management then conspired with the U.S. government to manufacture another report, based on an alternate set of facts, which sustained the notion that the Syrian government had, in fact, used chlorine as a weapon.

The OPCW management has largely ignored the leaks. The current director general, Fernando Arias, defended the work of his organization , declaring, "While some of these diverse views continue to circulate in some public discussion forums, I would like to reiterate that I stand by the independent, professional conclusion [of the investigation]." For its part, Newsweek , through a spokesperson, told a reporter , "The writer [Haddad] pitched a conspiracy theory rather than an idea for objective reporting. Newsweek editors rejected the pitch."

Under normal circumstances, the leaked documents and first-hand testimony of a whistleblower like "Alex" would have garnered the attention of the mainstream media, especially given their link to the Trump administration. There was a time when the media wasn't afraid to take a controversial story and run with it, even one that involved multilateral arms control. In August 1998, I resigned from my position as a chief weapons inspector with the United Nations Special Commission (UNSCOM), which had been charged with the removal, destruction, or dismantling of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction (WMD) in accordance with relevant UN Security Council resolutions. My resignation was front-page news at both The New York Times and The Washington Post (among others), and I was called to testify before the both the Senate and the House about my allegations, which centered on American interference with the work of UNSCOM.

In retrospect, I'd be delusional to believe that the sole reason the media had taken an interest in my story was that they found the intricacies of disarming Iraq fascinating. The reality was that, at least from the perspective of the mass media, my resignation had served as a means to play the story off against competing domestic political power bases, which in my case consisted of an incumbent Democratic president, Bill Clinton, and a Congress where both houses were controlled by Republicans.

My story had relevance not because I was empowered with fact-based truth (I was), but because my cause was taken up by one side (congressional Republicans) and used as a political cudgel against the other (President Clinton). The moment both the president and Congress came together of one mind, choosing military-backed regime change over legitimate disarmament, my utility was eliminated, and the media dropped me like a bad habit . The demonization of Saddam Hussein's Iraq precluded any meaningful discussion of issues of disarmament, with the end result the unquestioning embrace of the notion that Iraq had retained WMD, despite there being no evidence to sustain this, and an acceptance of war as the only viable solution, despite the fact that weapons inspections had proven they could be useful.

While conventional wisdom eventually evolved to accept the fact that the UN disarmament process had worked, and that I was correct when I'd reported that Iraq had been qualitatively disarmed and no longer posed a threat worthy of war, the fact remains that the issue of Iraqi WMD was always secondary to the issue of Saddam Hussein. Even once there was agreement that the WMD had been nonexistent, there was never any rethinking of how we had collectively pigeonholed Saddam into the "evil dictator" category, with the merits of his removal rarely questioned.

There are many similarities between my case and that of the OPCW inspectors, especially when it comes to their defending the integrity of the institution they represent and resisting the corruption of outside influences. The OPCW matter, however, remains a matter of internal dispute, denied the grand stage of American politics and the media attention that would garner.

There are several reasons for this. First, it is hard to rally people around a case where the central debate is over the relevance of particles per billion, or engineering equations concerning the tensile strength of concrete and steel. While the underlying science and math appears to be on the side of Ian Henderson and "Alex," the refusal of the OPCW to engage in any substantive discussion means that what passes for a "debate" has been hijacked by social media personalities. They're led by Eliot Higgins and his cohort of Bellingcat "specialists" who back up their questionable science with well-worn tropes designating all who oppose them as "pro-Assad" conspiracy theorists and/or Russian-controlled trolls who are simply regurgitating "Kremlin talking points."

Newsweek 's suppression of the reporting of Tareq Haddad is disturbing; the failure of the mainstream media to pick up the metaphorical ball and run with it is a damning indictment of the current state of journalism today. There was a time when an intrepid investigative reporter like Seymour Hersh would have sunk his teeth into a story such as this. But Hersh's one-time outlet of choice -- the New Yorker -- and its editor, David Remnick , have foregone the pursuit of truth in favor of publishing stories that demonize Assad and Putin. The same can be said of The New York Times , The Washington Post , and other major media outlets.

The OPCW whistleblower scandal has all the elements of a blockbuster -- heroes, villains, scandal, lies, and cover-up. But fact-based truth is no longer the fuel of the media business that modern journalism is supposed to sustain, especially when the truth can so easily be fobbed off as "pro-Assad" or "pro-Russia." As long as this model remains in place, and the work of genuine journalists such as Tareq Haddad is suppressed by editors, the American people will remain prisoners of their own ignorance.

Scott Ritter is a former Marine Corps intelligence officer who served in the former Soviet Union implementing arms control treaties, in the Persian Gulf during Operation Desert Storm, and in Iraq overseeing the disarmament of WMD. He is the author of several books, most recently, Deal of the Century: How Iran Blocked the West's Road

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minsredmash 2 days ago

Excellent story. Independent journalism in America is dead.
Newton Finn minsredmash 13 hours ago • edited
Yup, there hasn't been any journalism in America since around the time that Cronkite turned against the Vietnam War, and there was damn little of it even back then. ALL we've had since is deep state propaganda pushing false narratives to manipulate public opinion into supporting or ignoring militarism and plutocracy.
Chris Chuba 2 days ago
We accuse Russia and other countries of having state media but we have state media which is why we will never fix ourselves until we are eventually defeated. We are incapable of self-correction. I am very bitter about our MSM and hold them more accountable than our govt officials for our deplorable state. All govts lie, if our MSM cheers on our govt then it encourages them to tell bigger and bigger lies.

As bad as FOX is, CNN is even worse. CNN will dismiss something as a 'Putin talking point', note, there is no regard for whether or not it is true. They will quote a U.S. govt employee as if they are quoting St. Peter. Why should we be surprised, look at how many govt employees now work for the cable and news networks.

Jack Chris Chuba 2 days ago
And I think MSNBC is worse than both FOX and CNN.
Newton Finn Jack 13 hours ago
So does this radical leftist.
Dr. Rieux 2 days ago
Add "Bashir Assad gassed his own people" to the list of the world's biggest lies.

(FWIW, The list now grows wearily long.

We still have the oldies but goodies, like "The check is in the mail" and "I did not have sex with that woman, Miss Lewinsky," to name only two, but in recent years have added others, like "Epstein killed himself" and "Russia colluded in the 2016 election.")

BCZ 2 days ago
Newsweek has been a mainstay of nothing for some time.
Connecticut Farmer BCZ 2 days ago
Au contraire, Newsweek is a mainstay of the Democrat Party.
BCZ Connecticut Farmer 9 hours ago
It's really not tho. I have a pretty heavily skewed progressive network and if say it's only ever need as a source by the least educated progressives... If them. It really has fallen off the radar other than a source of click bait as far as I can tell
Sid Finster 2 days ago
Of course the "ZOMG Assad gassed his own people ZOMG!" story was an obvious hoax.

Of course the OCPW knew this. So did anyone else with the brains God gave a cat.

Of course the story was suppressed. Does Newsweek really think we are that stupid?

The only question is why, and the answer is obvious. Because the "bipartisan foreign policy consensus" (aka the "Deep State") wants its war on Syria, just as it got the war on Iraq that it so craved.

Sid Finster Sid Finster a day ago • edited
And it seems that a senior OCPW official ordered the deletion of all traces of the dissenting report. Just like clockwork. For some reason, TAC is not letting me post the link, but WikiLeaks has an unparalleled track record for scrupulous accuracy.

Nothing to see here, right? Right?

EliteCommInc. Sid Finster a day ago
The real goal here is to provoke a war with Iran Syria's ally.
Sid Finster EliteCommInc. a day ago
That's coming down the pike as well. Syria appears to be first on the neocon list.
Alex (the one that likes Ike) 2 days ago
What to say? Soft (or "soft") 1984 at its finest.
Connecticut Farmer Alex (the one that likes Ike) 2 days ago
Maybe they should change their name to "Newspeak."
stevek9 2 days ago
It's been obvious to anyone with half a brain that there have been no 'chemical attacks' carried out by the Syrian Government. The first one in Ghouta was exposed by Seymour Hersh, the second at Khan Shekhoun supposedly happened after Aleppo was almost liberated from the head-choppers, and one day after the US announced it would no longer seek Assad's removal ... this was mocked by one of my favorite cartoons ... a picture of Sun Tzu with the sarcastic 'quote', 'When your enemy is nearly defeated, and final victory is at hand, gas your own people so that nations greater than yours will intervene and destroy you'.

The final 'gas attack' in Douma was exposed immediately as a fake, because the Syrians and Russians had won and were already busing the terrorists to Idlib. Robert Fisk was there a day later and talked to the people at the clinic where supposed victims were taken and was told by the Doctors there that the people in the clinic were suffering from dust inhalation from the bombing, etc.

The draft report basically cast doubt on the whole story (as noted above) but the final report was doctored by a few people, no doubt under CIA direction.

There is nothing surprising about these revelations. It's nice to have corroboration, but as usual no one listens. We live today in an ocean of never-ceasing propaganda.

Connecticut Farmer 2 days ago
That a story such as this comes as no surprise doesn't make it any less tragic. Verily, but "journalism" has become virtually indistinguishable from agitprop--and it matters not whether of the so called Left or Right. The example of Sy Hersh illustrates how a truly professional journalist is supposed to follow the story, no matter where it leads, and if it doesn't accord with one's world view--so be it.
dean 2 days ago
so chemical and biological weapons (such as mustard gas and anthrax) are just something cooked up on stovetops and dispensed on Kurdish and Iranian opponents through primitive methods?

FYI, sheeples- the systems NECESSARY to effectively deliver to intended targets(without endangering personnel tasked with these attacks) are what was supplied by Soviet Russia as standard equipment with aircraft and armoured vehicles to Iraq and Syria.Saddam's airforce 2nd in command went public with statements to the effect that evidence of Soviet Russian involved in Iraq's WMD programs was removed by Russian security teams accompanied by Yuri Primakov just
ahead of coalition force arrival.Indeed the Soviets kept violating their biochemical arms control agreements,marked by a Urals lab spill which killed numerous local villagers.

Alex (the one that likes Ike) dean a day ago
For your information, deary, you need something more substantial than purported words of a purported insider (whose personality is as verifiable as the one of the purported whistleblower who purportedly heard Trump purportedly intimidating Zelensky with purportedly menacing eyebrow moves) in regards to purportedly Russian purported security teams purportedly removing something for a comment like this to stop making a laughing stock and a neocon sheeple out of you. Cruel galaxy, sob-sob.
yomama dean 10 hours ago • edited
More "Russia!, Russia!, Russia!" nonsense, the result of a lifetime of guzzling "Russia!, Russia!, Russia!" Kool-Aid. US and German companies supplied Saddam with the chemical supplies for his chem- & bio-weapons, weapons he used in his US-supported war-of-aggression against Iran in the '80's, after the Shah and the US were thrown out of Iran.
WorkingClass a day ago
I guess Haddad didn't know he was working for the CIA.

Some of us noticed at the time that Assad had nothing to gain and much to lose by launching this attack. This was one of the more obvious lies connected to imperial aggression in Syria.

Room_237 a day ago • edited
In my mind the worst thing about this is that it makes people who should know better into apologists or even fans of Assad and Putin
Sid Finster Room_237 a day ago
What exactly is that supposed to mean? Neither Assad nor Putin's crimes hold a candle to those of the enlightened West.
Daniel Baker a day ago
"there was never any rethinking of how we had collectively pigeonholed Saddam into the "evil dictator" category. . . . the New Yorker -- and its editor, David Remnick, have foregone the pursuit of truth in favor of publishing stories that demonize Assad,"

This is not the problem. Saddam was, in fact, an evil dictator. Assad, is in fact, a butcher well worthy of "demonization." The problem is that neither of these facts has anything to do with the questions of whether Saddam had an active WMD program in 2003 -- he absolutely didn't -- or whether Assad used chlorine gas in 2018 (I don't know, and this article doesn't help me decide).

The fact that Saddam was an evil dictator also doesn't answer the question of whether it was desirable to remove him. A mature mind is able to simultaneously embrace the fact that Saddam was a horrible butcher, and that removing him caused even worse disasters for Iraq. The best explanation I ever saw of this was from an Iraqi woman named Yusra, who had hated Saddam, but was nonetheless fleeing the Iraq the Americans had created: "In Saddam's time, I knew that if I kept my mouth shut, if I did not say anything against him, I would be safe. But now it is different. There are so many reasons why someone would want to kill me now: because I am Shiite, because I have a Sunni son, because I work for the Americans, because I drive, because I am a woman with a job, because . . . I don't wear my stupid hejab." (Dexter Filkins, The Forever War , p. 326). The key to avoiding more blunders like Iraq is not to convince the American people that Assad and Saddam are really nice, misunderstood guys, but to understand that evil dictators are neither necessarily threats to the USA, nor the worst of all possible calamities that could befall their people.

I certainly agree with Mr. Ritter that Tareq Haddad should not be silenced or ignored. The fact that Haddad's version is "Kremlin talking points" -- of course the Kremlin is going to talk about anything that makes its ally Assad look good -- tells us nothing about whether it's true or false.. The fact that the humanitarian organizations Syrian Civil Defense and Syrian American Medical Association are anti-Assad -- as of course any humanitarian organization would be -- also tells us nothing about whether their version is true or false. Truth or falsehood is determined by, as Mr. Ritter says, "the relevance of particles per billion, or engineering equations concerning the tensile strength of concrete and steel." Show us what the real evidence is, rather than asking us again to fall into the trap of assuming that the facts of reality are dictated by the political preferences of the adversaries.

Leonardo Facchin Daniel Baker 19 hours ago • edited
While I agree with many of the things you wrote, I would like to focus on this part (because it's the only one I find somewhat objectionable. Meaning: deserving of a more nuanced approach, not simply "false")
This is not the problem. Saddam was, in fact, an evil dictator. Assad, is in fact, a butcher well worthy of "demonization."

Can you define "evil"?
Is a person "evil" based on his actions or his intentions? Or both?

Because if we judge by their actions, I'd say many US Presidents can be considered as evil as Assad or Saddam, if not actually worse.

Bush Jr. started a war (based on a false premise) that not only led to the death of hundreds of thousands of people, but also to the destabilization of a whole region of the world, whose consequences we are witnessing to this very day.

Obama, together with Cameron and Sarkozy, helped remove the "evil dictator" Qaddafi, plunging Libya into chaos and preparing the way for the international confrontation that is escalating these very days.
I'm Italian and I can assure you that we have to deal on a daily basis with the tragedy of poor desperate people drowning in the Mediterranean while trying to escape open slave markets in Libya.

In 2001-2003 the US used Syria as a destination for its "extraordinary rendition + torture" program of suspected terrorists. So, if the Assads are evil, how can we define those people who decided to lean onto "evil" in order to be able to do something they wouldn't be allowed to do at home?

Power structures are not about "evil" or "good", They are concerned with "interests" and "self-perpetuation". And while they can be brutal and uncompromising (like in Saddam's Iraq or Assad's Syria), they are not usually gratuitously so. At least, not completely.
For example, while I think no one can argue that the Syrian State is governed with an iron fist by its power structure, the current war - that is entering its ninth year - has shown that the Syrian government is confronted by an armed opposition that is at least as brutal as the government is, but also much more fanatical and sectarian.

So, I guess my point is: we should refrain from implementing simplistic solutions in order to solve complex problems that are the result of the layering of tens (if not hundreds) of years of local power, social and cultural dynamics. Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria are proof enough that coming to a country "all guns blazing" and removing its leadership doesn't solve the underlying issues that created the conditions in which those "iron fisted" leaderships prospered. Regime change operations usually leave a country in much worse conditions than it were when they started. Which can be considered an "evil" act in itself.

EliteCommInc. a day ago
""I have collected evidence of how they [the OPCW] suppressed the story in addition to evidence from another case where info inconvenient to US govt was removed, though it was factually correct." Haddad further noted that he had been threatened by Newsweek with legal action if he sought to publish his findings elsewhere."

As usual Inspector Ritter, well done. Excuse me given the above in light of what has been coming to light concerning powerful players in the establishment we are supposed to trust, no less so than the media ---- at the moment I can only

laugh and laugh loud . . . Newsweek is threatening legal action against one of its, now former employees, because of a news story. My how the worm has turned . . .a medium such as Newsweek, a vanguard of freedom of the press and free speech, wants to prosecute one of their to prevent the same.

Laughing.

Oy veh!

It is nice that what appeared skeptical from the beginning is has begun eating its way out of the opaque paper bag of needless intervention.

Leonardo Facchin a day ago
Haddad's new sources emerged after the publication of the OPCW's final report on the Douma incident in July 2019. That document concluded that chlorine had been used as a weapon at Douma, likely viachlorine canisters dropped from aircraft -- making the Syrian government solely responsible and legitimizing the U.S.-led aerial attacks.

The link is to the July 2018 OPCW Interim report and not to the March 2019 Final Report, which is here:

https://www.opcw.org/sites/...

Apart from that, Wikileaks has just released four more documents that prove that:
1) The toxicologists consulted by the original Fact Finding Mission in June of 2018 were convinced that the symptoms the alleged victims were showing in videos and pictures were not compatible with chlorine poisoning.
2) The OPCW management replaced all members of the original FFM sent to Douma except for a paramedic once the first reports began coming in and they realized the inspectors were very skeptical about the Western narrative of a chemical attack happening in the first place.
That is: the OPCW management hand-picked a different team, likely with the intent of getting the kind of report they were looking for.

VERYHAPPY a day ago
We have a state media. It just does not belong to our state. It is an Israel Pravda impressed to propagandized a conquered province.How sad and scary. .
Barry F Keane a day ago
The real scandal is that the US has committed blatant treason in Syria by supporting Al Qaeda. This truth must be downplayed at all costs, and the OPCW cover-up is a minor detail compared to covering up treason. Despite our efforts, Syria and its allies have defeated AQ everywhere except Idlib, and are now preparing the final assault to liberate Idlib. True to form, Western propaganda now whips up View Hide
Taras77 a day ago
https://www.rt.com/news/476...
OPCW official took active steps to conceal dissent and support the coverup.
Dennis Hanna a day ago
Evidence has been building for some time that the OPCW cooked the books in its investigation of alleged chemical weapons use in the Syrian town of Douma on April 7, 2018. ..."

"... OPCW cooked the books ..." means what? The term cooking the books is based in an old secondary definition of the word cook, which is to present something that has been altered in an underhanded way. By the mid-1800s the term cooking the books had come into use to mean manipulating financial records in order to deceive.

The common man or woman understand the meaning to be: lie, fabricate and falsify.

Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind."
"Politics and the English Language" (1946) is an essay by George Orwell

Mr. Ritter is, or, at least once, was better than that ... political language.

"... For its part, Newsweek, through a spokesperson, told a reporter, "The writer [Haddad] pitched a conspiracy theory rather than an idea for objective reporting. Newsweek editors rejected the pitch. ..."

[ then ]
"The Free Press" John Swinton on the Free Press
One night, probably in 1880, John Swinton, then the preeminent New York journalist, was the guest of honour at a banquet given him by the leaders of his craft. Someone who knew neither the press nor Swinton offered a toast to the independent press. Swinton outraged his colleagues by replying:
"There is no such thing, at this date of the world's history, in America, as an independent press. You know it and I know it.
There is not one of you who dares to write your honest opinions, and if you did, you know beforehand that it would never appear in print. I am paid weekly for keeping my honest opinion out of the paper I am connected with.
Others of you are paid similar salaries for similar things, and any of you who would be so foolish as to write honest opinions would be out on the streets looking for another job. If I allowed my honest opinions to appear in one issue of my paper, before twenty-four hours my occupation would be gone.
The business of the journalists is to destroy the truth, to lie outright, to pervert, to vilify, to fawn at the feet of mammon, and to sell his country and his race for his daily bread. You know it and I know it, and what folly is this toasting an independent press?
We are the tools and vassals of rich men behind the scenes. We are the jumping jacks, they pull the strings and we dance. Our talents, our possibilities and our lives are all the property of other men. We are intellectual prostitutes."
(Source: Labor's Untold Story, by Richard O. Boyer and Herbert M. Morais, published by United Electrical, Radio & Machine Workers of America, NY, 1955/1979.)

[ now ]
The press is a gang of cruel faggots. Journalism is not a profession or a trade. It is a cheap catch-all for fuckoffs and misfits -- a false doorway to the backside of life, a filthy piss-ridden little hole nailed off by the building inspector, but just deep enough for a wino to curl up from the sidewalk and masturbate like a chimp in a zoo-cage.
Hunter S. Thompson, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas

"... The writer [Haddad] pitched a conspiracy theory ..."
the pejorative phrase "conspiracy theory" casts the tin foil cap on the depersonalized and diminished a human being as "... The writer. ..."

Last, but not least, "... The current director general, Fernando Arias, defended the work of his organization, declaring, "While some of these diverse views continue to circulate in some public discussion forums, I would like to reiterate that I stand by the independent, professional conclusion [of the investigation]."..."

José Bustani, the retired Brazilian diplomat and former head of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons recalled John Bolton saying, referring to the then-vice president of the United States Dick Chaney.

"We can't accept your management style."

Bolton continued, according to Bustani's recollections:

"You have 24 hours to leave the organization, and if you don't comply with this decision by Washington, we have ways to retaliate against you."

There was a pause.

"We know where your kids live. You have two sons in New York."

In early 2002, a year before the invasion of Iraq, the Bush administration was putting intense pressure on Bustani to quit as director-general of the OPCW -- despite the fact that he had been unanimously re-elected to head the 145-nation body just two years earlier. His transgression? Negotiating with Saddam Hussein's Iraq to allow OPCW weapons inspectors to make unannounced visits to that country -- thereby undermining Washington's rationale for regime change.

Mr. Ritter, of course, has no knowledge or understanding of Iraq or "cooked books" on weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.

Political language, what is that?

Journalists and journalism, what is that?

And, so it goes ...
dennis hanna

Killing time a day ago
US media is so ridiculous and pathetic; former and current Communist nations have been feeling sorry for everyday Americans for years. Little do they know many of us have learned to 20/20 see through the psychopathy...and glance "their stories" as a person would have viewed the National Enquirer 30 years ago.

I'm pretty sure the National Enquirer is much more honest in it's reporting today vs. MSN.

[Dec 28, 2019] We now have Voldemorts real name, Sebastien Braha

Dec 28, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

TJ , Dec 28 2019 18:10 utc | 10

OPCW-DOUMA - Release Part 4

We now have Voldemorts real name, Sebastien Braha.

[Dec 28, 2019] Senior OPCW Official Busted Leaked Email Exposes Orders To Delete All Traces Of Dissent On Douma

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... Imagine millions of government employees paid for by America's tax payer class, involved in covert operations undermining nation states for the benefit of war mongering shadow overlords counting on more never ending chaos feeding their hunger for power. ..."
"... This isn't Orwell's 1984, this Team America on opioids. ..."
"... Senior OPCW official had orders from US/ the Donald. Remember that the Donald bombed Syria based on this fake report , after a false flag done by Al Qaeda's artistic branch, the White Helmets. ..."
"... Pray, do tell where are the consequences for these literal demons that engaged in war crimes? It is quite clear: as long as you are a member of the establishment, you can do whatever the f*ck you want. ..."
"... Third rate script, third rate actors and crooked investigators. TPTB seem to have a plan worked out. Their problem now is that we, the hoi-polloi, have seen it all before, many times, and we can now recognise ******** when it's used to try to influence us. ..."
"... If this is not lamentable enough, the OPCW – whose final report came to more than a hundred pages and which even issued an easy-to-read precis version for journalists – now slams shut its steel doors in the hope of preventing even more information reaching the press. ..."
"... Instead of these pieces concentrating on the whistleblower how about putting a little heat on the 50 lying bastards who initiated the coverup? ..."
"... The destruction of the countries of the Middle East for the sake of a dwarf with giant ambitions is the most stupid thing the United States has done over the past 30 years in its foreign policy. And yes, all the wars in the Middle East were grounded in lies. And the Americans paid for it all from start to finish. When Americans realize that they need to defend their national interests, and not other people's national interests, maybe something in the Middle East will change for the better. True, I am afraid that with the hight level of stupidity and shortsightedness that is common among Americans, the United States is more likely to be destroyed faster. No offense. ..."
"... And I propose to remember the Syrian Christians who were destroyed by the Saudi Wahhabis, hired by the CIA with the money of American taxpayers and at the request of Israel. Until the Americans begin to investigate the activities of the CIA (and this activity causes the United States only harm), the responsibility for this genocide (you heard right) will be on the American nation. It turns out that in the Middle East you are primarily destroying Christians. How interesting, why such zeal. ..."
"... According to whistleblower testimony and leaked documents, OPCW officials raised alarm about the suppression of critical findings that undermine the allegation that the Syrian government committed a chemical weapons attack in the city of Douma in April 2018. Haddad's editors at Newsweek rejected his attempts to cover the story. "If I don't find another position in journalism because of this, I'm perfectly happy to accept that consequence," Haddad says. "It's not desirable. But there is no way I could have continued in that job knowing that I couldn't report something like this." ..."
"... New leaks continue to expose a cover-up by the OPCW – the world's top chemical weapons watchdog – over a critical event in Syria. Documents, emails, and testimony from OPCW officials have raised major doubts about the allegation that the Syrian government committed a chemical weapons attack in the city of Douma in April 2018. The leaked OPCW information has been released in pieces by Wikileaks. The latest documents contain a number of significant revelations – including that that about 20 OPCW officials voiced concerns that their scientific findings and on-the-ground evidence was suppressed and excluded. ..."
Dec 28, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Senior OPCW Official Busted: Leaked Email Exposes Orders To "Delete All Traces" Of Dissent On Douma by Tyler Durden Sat, 12/28/2019 - 10:30 0 SHARES

Via AlMasdarNews.com,

Wikileaks has released their fourth set of leaks from the OPCW's Douma investigation, revealing new details about the alleged deletion of important information regarding the fact-finding mission.

RELEASE: OPCW-Douma Docs 4. Four leaked documents from the OPCW reveal that toxicologists ruled out deaths from chlorine exposure and a senior official ordered the deletion of the dissenting engineering report from OPCW's internal repository of documents. https://t.co/ndK4sRikNk

-- WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) December 27, 2019

"One of the documents is an e-mail exchange dated 27 and 28 February between members of the fact finding mission (FFM) deployed to Douma and the senior officials of the OPCW. It includes an e-mail from Sebastien Braha, Chief of Cabinet at the OPCW , where he instructs that an engineering report from Ian Henderson should be removed from the secure registry of the organisation," WikiLeaks writes. Included in the email is the following directive:

" Please get this document out of DRA [Documents Registry Archive] And please remove all traces, if any, of its delivery/storage/whatever in DRA.'"

According to Wikileaks, the main finding of Henderson, who inspected the sites in Douma, was that two of the cylinders were most likely manually placed at the site, rather than dropped.

"The main finding of Henderson, who inspected the sites in Douma and two cylinders that were found on the site of the alleged attack, was that they were more likely manually placed there than dropped from a plane or helicopter from considerable heights. His findings were omitted from the official final OPCW report on the Douma incident," the Wikileaks report said.

It must be remembered that the U.S. launched an attack on Damascus, Syria on April 14, 2018 over alleged chemical weapons usage by pro-Assad forces at Douma.

AP file image.

Another document released Friday is minutes from a meeting on 6 June 2018 where four staff members of the OPCW had discussions with "three Toxicologists/Clinical pharmacologists, one bioanalytical and toxicological chemist" (all specialists in chemical weapons, according to the minutes).

Minutes from an OPCW meeting with toxicologists specialized in chemical weapons: "the experts were conclusive in their statements that there was
no correlation between symptoms and chlorine exposure". https://t.co/j5Jgjiz8UY pic.twitter.com/vgPaTtsdQN

-- WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) December 27, 2019

The purpose of this meeting was two-fold. The first objective was "to solicit expert advice on the value of exhuming suspected victims of the alleged chemical attack in Douma on 7 April 2018". According to the minutes, the OPCW team was advised by the experts that there would be little use in conducting exhumations. The second point was "To elicit expert opinions from the forensic toxicologists regarding the observed and reported symptoms of the alleged victims."

More specifically, " whether the symptoms observed in victims were consistent with exposure to chlorine or other reactive chlorine gas."

According to the minutes leaked Friday: "With respect to the consistency of the observed and reported symptoms of the alleged victims with possible exposure to chlorine gas or similar, the experts were conclusive in their statements that there was no correlation between symptoms and chlorine exposure ."

The OPCW team members wrote that the key "take-away message" from the meeting was "that the symptoms observed were inconsistent with exposure to chlorine and no other obvious candidate chemical causing the symptoms could be identified".

* * *

See full details at Wikileaks.org


JohnFrodo , 28 minutes ago link

pity the human pawns at the center of this mess.

africoman , 38 minutes ago link

There has been a Newsweek reporter who quite over editorial block of this OPCW case here also another interview by Grayzone

https://youtu.be/qqK8KgxuCPI

The isisrahell have such long hand to pull the plug any stories implicating their crime in progress otherwise they can put out some bs spins as bombshell reporting about US lies in Afghanistan war on their wapo for public for those who read it was nothing important revealed except being a misdirected na

ponyboy99 , 40 minutes ago link

If you want to pay off that student loan you're going to print what they tell you to print. You're going to inject kids with what they tell you to inject them with. You're going to think what they tell you to think or you're going to spend your days in a Prole bar drinking Blatz.

ponyboy99 , 47 minutes ago link

If you go thru life assuming every single thing is a farce and a lie (Roddy Piper) these events can not only be explained, they can be predicted.

Ace006 , 57 minutes ago link

SOMEbody's got to ensure the intergrity of the Documents Registry Archive

Weihan , 58 minutes ago link

The globalist deep-state's reach is legendary.

Nothing , 1 hour ago link

yes, an attack was launched, 50 missiles I believe, after loud warnings that it was coming, and none of them actually hit anything significant ... this is the way the game is played .... the good news is that the missiles cost $50 million, and now they will have to be replaced, by the Pentagon, first borrowing the money through the US Treasury offerings, and then paying for them from new money printed by the Federal Reserve. capische?

Greed is King , 36 minutes ago link

That`s the way it`s always been, it`s the eternal war of good against evil.

And when one evil enemy is defeated, it`s necessary to create a new evil enemy, how else can the Establishment Elite make money from war, death and destruction.

africoman , 16 minutes ago link

It's really very awkward & telling how ***** these bunch of western nations are looking tough on taking out poor defenceless country like Syria on ******** & at the satried to ease real kickass Russian as you described when they launch the attacks

I kind wish the US & their Zionist clown launch such huge attacks on Iran based on false flag

I really wanted these evil aggressive powers to taste what it is like to get bombed back even one they used to throw on multiple weaker nations freely with nothing to fear as retribution etc

Thordoom , 1 hour ago link

This organisations are all set up in Europe and US run by the filthiest filth on earth who still think they have God given right to imperial rule over the world.

British elite is the worst of all.

DCFusor , 1 hour ago link

Your military-industrial-intelligence complex at work, creating justification for more funding, like always - and who cares if people die as a result? Like Soros said, if they didn't do it, someone else would. (do I need /sarc?).

They don't like to be shown to be in charge, just to be in charge. And if you think this is a function of the current admin, you've been slow in the head and deaf and blind for quite some time.

I've watched since Eisenhower, and "it's always something". Doesn't matter what color the clown in chief's tie is.

St. TwinkleToes , 1 hour ago link

Imagine millions of government employees paid for by America's tax payer class, involved in covert operations undermining nation states for the benefit of war mongering shadow overlords counting on more never ending chaos feeding their hunger for power.

This isn't Orwell's 1984, this Team America on opioids.

veritas semper vinces , 2 hours ago link

Senior OPCW official had orders from US/ the Donald. Remember that the Donald bombed Syria based on this fake report , after a false flag done by Al Qaeda's artistic branch, the White Helmets.

holgerdanske , 1 hour ago link

It was May that insisted on this attack. Remember the "poison" attack and the evil Russians?

lwilland1012 , 3 hours ago link

Pray, do tell where are the consequences for these literal demons that engaged in war crimes? It is quite clear: as long as you are a member of the establishment, you can do whatever the f*ck you want. Why do we even follow the law, then? Given the precedent that is being set, we might as well not have any.

ken , 1 hour ago link

Well, they are looking forward to using all those Israeli weapons, er, uh, products, that local law enforcement has purchased...so watch out for Co-Intel Pro elicitation going forward....?

WorkingClassMan , 3 hours ago link

Everybody knows the Golem (USA) does Isn'treal's bidding in Syria and elsewhere in the Near East. Hopefully they keep hammering in the fact that this "gas attack" was an obvious set-up to use as a pretext (flimsy itself on the face of it) to brutalize Assad and Syria on behalf of Isn'treal.

The whole thing is built on ******* lies. Worst part about it is, nothing will happen.

turkey george palmer , 3 hours ago link

Only official news is to believed. You see it and it is a lie. they tell you to believe it. A lot of people casually believe whatever is spoken on TV. They become teachers and are taught in college what is right and wrong. We only have a few years before all the brain dead are in charge and robotically following the message like zombies with no brain

adonisdemilo , 3 hours ago link

Third rate script, third rate actors and crooked investigators. TPTB seem to have a plan worked out. Their problem now is that we, the hoi-polloi, have seen it all before, many times, and we can now recognise ******** when it's used to try to influence us.

johnnycanuck , 3 hours ago link

It is difficult to underestimate the seriousness of this manipulative act by the OPCW. In a response to the conservative author Peter Hitchens, who also writes for the Mail on Sunday – he is of course the brother of the late Christopher Hitchens – the OPCW admits that its so-called technical secretariat "is conducting an internal investigation about the unauthorised [sic] release of the document".

Then it adds: "At this time, there is no further public information on this matter and the OPCW is unable to accommodate [sic] requests for interviews". It's a tactic that until now seems to have worked: not a single news media which reported the OPCW's official conclusions has followed up the story of the report which the OPCW suppressed.

And you bet the OPCW is not going to "accommodate" interviews. For here is an institution investigating a war crime in a conflict which has cost hundreds of thousands of lives – yet its only response to an enquiry about the engineers' "secret" assessment is to concentrate on its own witch-hunt for the source of the document it wished to keep secret from the world.

If this is not lamentable enough, the OPCW – whose final report came to more than a hundred pages and which even issued an easy-to-read precis version for journalists – now slams shut its steel doors in the hope of preventing even more information reaching the press.

https://johnmenadue.com/robert-fisk-the-evidence-we-were-never-meant-to-see-about-the-douma-gas-attack-counterpunch-27-may-2019/

5fingerdiscount , 3 hours ago link

Instead of these pieces concentrating on the whistleblower how about putting a little heat on the 50 lying bastards who initiated the coverup?

Helg Saracen , 3 hours ago link

The destruction of the countries of the Middle East for the sake of a dwarf with giant ambitions is the most stupid thing the United States has done over the past 30 years in its foreign policy. And yes, all the wars in the Middle East were grounded in lies. And the Americans paid for it all from start to finish. When Americans realize that they need to defend their national interests, and not other people's national interests, maybe something in the Middle East will change for the better. True, I am afraid that with the hight level of stupidity and shortsightedness that is common among Americans, the United States is more likely to be destroyed faster. No offense.

And I propose to remember the Syrian Christians who were destroyed by the Saudi Wahhabis, hired by the CIA with the money of American taxpayers and at the request of Israel. Until the Americans begin to investigate the activities of the CIA (and this activity causes the United States only harm), the responsibility for this genocide (you heard right) will be on the American nation. It turns out that in the Middle East you are primarily destroying Christians. How interesting, why such zeal.

carbonmutant , 4 hours ago link

You gotta wonder how much the deep state has deleted about their interference in Trump's administration...

dogbert8 , 4 hours ago link

Pretty much everyone with a brain realizes this all was a lie; only the M5M and the DC swamp continue to pretend it wasn't.

Joiningupthedots , 4 hours ago link

Who really made the order though?

ClickNLook , 3 hours ago link

Sebastien Braha, Chief of Cabinet at the OPCW needs to be interrogated to find out.

Condor_0000 , 4 hours ago link

Newsweek Reporter Quits After Editors Block Coverage of OPCW Syria Scandal

December 19, 2019

Aaron Mate

https://thegrayzone.com/2019/12/19/newsweek-reporter-quits-after-editors-block-coverage-of-opcw-syria-scandal/

According to whistleblower testimony and leaked documents, OPCW officials raised alarm about the suppression of critical findings that undermine the allegation that the Syrian government committed a chemical weapons attack in the city of Douma in April 2018. Haddad's editors at Newsweek rejected his attempts to cover the story. "If I don't find another position in journalism because of this, I'm perfectly happy to accept that consequence," Haddad says. "It's not desirable. But there is no way I could have continued in that job knowing that I couldn't report something like this."

New leaks continue to expose a cover-up by the OPCW – the world's top chemical weapons watchdog – over a critical event in Syria. Documents, emails, and testimony from OPCW officials have raised major doubts about the allegation that the Syrian government committed a chemical weapons attack in the city of Douma in April 2018. The leaked OPCW information has been released in pieces by Wikileaks. The latest documents contain a number of significant revelations – including that that about 20 OPCW officials voiced concerns that their scientific findings and on-the-ground evidence was suppressed and excluded.

This is, without a doubt, a major global scandal: the OPCW, under reported US pressure, suppressing vital evidence about allegations of chemical weapons. But that very fact exposes another global scandal: with the exception of small outlets like The Grayzone, the mass media has widely ignored or whitewashed this story. And this widespread censorship of the OPCW scandal has just led one journalist to resign. Up until recently, Tareq Haddad was a reporter at Newsweek. But in early December, Tareq announced that he had quit his position after Newsweek refused to publish his story about the OPCW cover up over Syria.

[Dec 22, 2019] The 12 Strongest Arguments That Douma Was A False Flag

Looks like both Douma and Skripals have the same authors and were carefully pre-planned false flag operations.
Notable quotes:
"... "The convincing evidence of irregular behaviour in the OPCW investigation of the alleged Douma chemical attack confirms doubts and suspicions I already had. I could make no sense of what I was reading in the international press. Even official reports of investigations seemed incoherent at best. The picture is certainly clearer now, although very disturbing" ..."
"... "I have always expected the OPCW to be a true paradigm of multilateralism. My hope is that the concerns expressed publicly by the Panel, in its joint consensus statement, will catalyse a process by which the Organisation can be resurrected to become the independent and non-discriminatory body it used to be." ..."
"... Click this hyperlink to read a BBC article dated five days before the Douma incident, describing how the Syrian government "appears poised to regain control" of the town and how Jaysh al-Islam fighters were already evacuating. The battle was won. Assad would have stood absolutely nothing to gain from tempting a retaliation from western powers (which could have been far more severe than it ended up being) all to drop a couple of cylinders of chlorine gas, which incidentally is a highly ineffective weapon that ordinarily takes a very long time to kill. ..."
"... "The jihadists and the various opposition groups who've been fighting against Assad have much greater motivation to launch a chemical weapons attack and make it look like Assad was responsible," the ex-SAS and Parachute Regiment commander added. "Their motivation being that they want to keep the Americans involved in the war -- following Trump saying the US was going to leave Syria for other people to sort out." ..."
"... Admiral Lord West made similar comments on the BBC around the same time, prompting BBC host Annita McVeigh to flip into frantic narrative management mode suggesting that he's "muddying the waters" during an "information war with Russia". ..."
"... "If I were advising some of the Islamist groups, many of whom are worse than Daesh," West said, "I would say look, we've got to wait until there's another attack by Assad's forces, particularly if they've got a helicopter overhead or something like that and they're dropping barrel bombs, and we set off some chlorine. Because we'll get the next attack from the allies. And there's no doubt that if we believe he's done a chemical attack we should do that. And those attacks will get bigger, and it's the only way they've got, actually, of stopping the inevitable victory of Assad." ..."
Dec 22, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com
Authored by Caitlin Johnstone via Medium.com,

There have been many US military interventions that were based on lies. This is not a conspiracy theory. It is not some kooky blogger's opinion. It is an extensively documented and indisputable fact .

Nothing has ever been done to address this extensively documented and indisputable fact. No laws were ever changed. No war crimes tribunals were ever held. No policies or procedures were ever revised. No one was ever even fired. No changes were implemented to prevent the Iraq deception from happening again, and, when it happened again, no changes were implemented to prevent the Libya deception from happening again.

When you make a mistake, you take measures afterward to ensure that you never make the same mistake again. When you do something on purpose, and you intend on doing it again, you do not take any such measures.

There is a large and growing body of evidence that we have been lied to about Syria to an extent and to a level of sophistication that may be historically unprecedented . One particular aspect of the US-centralized empire's military involvement in that nation, the 2018 airstrikes by the US/UK/France alliance and the alleged chemical weapons incident which preceded it, has been subject to intense scrutiny ever since it took place. And with good reason: there are many pieces of evidence indicating that the Douma incident was staged to falsely implicate the Syrian government.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/Yw0-ASR4sr8

I don't claim to know exactly who would have been involved in such a staging and to what extent. It is technically possible, as the UK's Admiral Lord West speculated at the time , that it was perpetrated independently by the vicious al-Qaeda-linked Jaysh al-Islam forces who'd been occupying Douma, a last-ditch attempt to provoke a western military response that might save them from the brink of defeat at the hands of the surging Syrian Arab Army. Jaysh al-Islam has an established record of deliberately massacring civilians , and of using civilians as military leverage by locking them in cages on rooftops in strategic Douma locations to prevent airstrikes. The narrative management operation known as the White Helmets would also have been involved to some extent, and it's very possible that Saudi Arabia, who backs Jaysh al-Islam , was involved as well.

Any number of other allied intelligence agencies could have also been involved to some degree (perhaps with the more expanded goal of ensuring continued US military commitment in Syria during an administration that is vocally opposed to it), and it's unknown if anyone involved would have had direct contact with any part of any US government agency regarding any of this. All we know for sure is that there's a growing mountain of evidence that the Syrian government was not involved, and that this raises extremely important questions about (A) who really killed those civilians in Douma and (B) how seriously any future demands for military action should be taken from the US power alliance.

That mountain of evidence includes the following 12 items. Taken individually they are reason enough to be skeptical of the narratives that are being promoted by a government with a known history of using lies, propaganda and false flags to advance preexisting military agendas. Taken together, and looked at with intellectual honesty, they are enough to obliterate anyone's trust in what we've been told about Douma.

1. A leaked OPCW Engineering Assessment concluded that the gas cylinders on the scene were manually placed there.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/2l4X3XImy4w

The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) is a purportedly neutral and international watchdog group dedicated to eliminating the use of chemical weapons around the world. In May of this year, a leaked internal OPCW document labeled " Engineering Assessment of Two Cylinders Observed at the Douma Incident " was published by the Working Group on Syria, Propaganda and Media. The Engineering Assessment was signed by a South African ballistics expert named Ian Henderson, whose name is seen listed in expert leadership positions on OPCW documents from as far back as 1998 and as recently as 2018 , and its authenticity was quickly confirmed by the OPCW in a statement sent to multiple journalists that it was "conducting an internal investigation about the unauthorised release of the document in question."

Henderson ran some experiments and found no scientifically grounded theory for how the cylinders could possibly have been dropped vertically from the air while being found in the condition and locations that they were found in, concluding instead that they were manually placed on the scene. This is a huge difference, since the Assad coalition was the only side with aircraft and Jaysh al-Islam were the only forces on the ground.

"The dimensions, characteristics and appearance of the cylinders, and the surrounding scene of the incidents, were inconsistent with what would have been expected in the case of either cylinder being delivered from an aircraft," Henderson wrote. "In each case the alternative hypothesis produced the only plausible explanation for observations at the scene."

"In summary, observations at the scene of the two locations, together with subsequent analysis, suggest that there is a higher probability that both cylinders were manually placed at those two locations rather than being delivered from aircraft," Henderson concludes.

This is unsurprising, since the hypothetical physics of the empire's airdrop narrative make no sense to anyone with any understanding of how material objects move. To get a simple explanation of this, watch the breakdown in this three-minute animation . For a more in-depth look, check out this long Twitter thread by Climate Audit's Stephen McIntyre.

The existence of Henderson's report was kept secret from the public by the OPCW, which might make more sense after we get through #2 on this list.

2. US officials reportedly pressured the OPCW to find evidence of Assad's guilt.

Journalist Jonathan Steele met with second OPCW whistleblower, who detailed the doctoring of the report on Douma to conform to the phony US/NATO version of events.

He also described direct US pressure on the OPCW in the form of three unnamed officials: https://t.co/YER9WJN4lX pic.twitter.com/4nDNPUbEQq

-- Max Blumenthal (@MaxBlumenthal) November 18, 2019

In addition to whoever leaked the Henderson report in May, a second whistleblower going by the pseudonym of "Alex" emerged in October to give a presentation before the whistleblower's advocacy group Courage Foundation exposing far more plot holes in the official Douma narrative. This same whistleblower also spoke with award-winning British journalist Jonathan Steele, who published a bombshell report on Alex's revelations in CounterPunch last month.

Among the most stunning revelations in Steele's article was Alex's report that US officials attempted to pressure OPCW inspectors during the Organisation's drafting of its Interim Report on their Douma investigation in July 2018, and that this intercession was facilitated by an OPCW official named Bob Fairweather.

"On July 4 there was another intervention," Steele writes. "Fairweather, the chef de cabinet, invited several members of the drafting team to his office. There they found three US officials who were cursorily introduced without making clear which US agencies they represented. The Americans told them emphatically that the Syrian regime had conducted a gas attack, and that the two cylinders found on the roof and upper floor of the building contained 170 kilograms of chlorine. The inspectors left Fairweather's office, feeling that the invitation to the Americans to address them was unacceptable pressure and a violation of the OPCW's declared principles of independence and impartiality."

It's unknown what forces were at play that enabled the US government to insert itself into into an ostensibly impartial OPCW investigation with the help of an OPCW official, but it wouldn't be the first time the US government leveraged the Organisation into facilitating preexisting regime change agendas against a disobedient Middle Eastern nation. In 2002 Mother Jones reported that the US government, spearheaded by John Bolton, had used the threat of withdrawing its disproportionately high percentage of funding from the Organisation if it didn't oust its then-Director General Jose Bustani. The popular Bustani, who'd previously been unanimously re-elected to his position, had been hurting the case for war with his successful negotiations with Saddam Hussein's Iraq. In March 2018, after Bolton was selected as Trump's National Security Advisor, The Intercept revealed that the campaign to remove Bustani had also included Bolton personally threatening his children.

Bolton was operating at the highest levels of the Trump White House throughout the entire duration of the OPCW's Douma investigation. He was Trump's National Security Advisor from April 9, 2018 to September 10, 2019. The OPCW's Fact-Finding mission didn't arrive in Syria until April 14 2018 and didn't begin its investigation in Douma until several days after that, with its final report being released in March of 2019.

3. Levels of chlorinated organic chemicals didn't indicate any chlorine gas attack took place.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/ojItF6MGL-0

"The main point is that chlorine gas degrades rapidly in the air," Jonathan Steele told Tucker Carlson last month detailing what was told to him by Alex. "So coming in two weeks later, you wouldn't find anything. What you would find is that the gas contaminates or affects other chemicals in the natural environment. So-called chlorinated organic chemicals [COCs]. The difficulty is they exist anyway in the natural environment and water. So the crucial thing is the levels: were there higher levels of chlorinated organic chemicals found after the alleged gas attack than there would have been in the normal environment?"

"When they got back to the Netherlands, to The Hague where the OPCW has its headquarters, samples were sent off to designated laboratories, then there was a weird silence developed," Steele continued. "Nobody told the inspectors what the results of the analysis was. It was only by chance that the inspector found out through accident earlier the results would come in and there were no differences at all. There were no higher levels of chlorinated organic chemicals in the areas where the alleged attack had happened where there is some suspicious cylinders had been found by opposition activists. So it didn't seem possible that there could have been a gas attack because the levels were just the same as in the natural environment."

"[Alex] got sight of the results which indicated that the levels of COCs were much lower than what would be expected in environmental samples," Steele reported in CounterPunch . "They were comparable to and even lower than those given in the World Health Organisation's guidelines on recommended permitted levels of trichlorophenol and other COCs in drinking water. The redacted version of the report made no mention of the findings."

"Had they been included, the public would have seen that the levels of COCs found were no higher than you would expect in any household environment", Alex told Steele.

This inconvenient fact was omitted from both the OPCW's Interim Report in July 2018 and its Final Report in March 2019.

4. Many signs and symptoms of alleged chlorine gas poisoning weren't consistent with chlorine gas poisoning.

"It is not possible to precisely link the cause of the signs and symptoms to a specific chemical", but it was definitely chlorine because we said so. No you can't see the evidence, just trust us. pic.twitter.com/2KguY4Lbyu

-- Caitlin Johnstone ⏳ (@caitoz) October 23, 2019

The OPCW's Final Report on Douma in March 2019 assures us that the team found "reasonable grounds that the use of a toxic chemical as a weapon took place. This toxic chemical contained reactive chlorine. The toxic chemical was likely molecular chlorine." A leaked internal OPCW email , featuring an inspector voicing objections to the aforementioned Bob Fairweather over vital information being omitted from the developing Interim Report on Douma, contradicts this assurance, saying observed symptoms weren't consistent with chlorine gas poisoning.

"In this case the confidence in the identity of chlorine or any choking agent is drawn into question precisely because of the inconsistency with the reported and observed symptoms," the email reads. "The inconsistency was not only noted by the FFM [Fact-Finding Mission] team but strongly noted by three toxicologists with expertise in exposure to CW [Chemical Weapons] agents."

So the OPCW's investigative team as well as three toxicologists said what was observed didn't match chlorine gas poisoning symptoms. This information was, of course, hidden from us by the OPCW.

A leaked first draft of the Interim Report on Douma, before OPCW officials started cutting out chunks which didn't suit the US narrative, gives more detail. Here are some excerpts (emphases mine):

"Some of the signs and symptoms described by witnesses and noted in photos and video recordings taken by witnesses, of the alleged victims are not consistent with exposure to chlorine-containing choking or blood agents such as chlorine gas, phosgene or cyanogen chloride. Specifically, the rapid onset of heavy buccal and nasal frothing in many victims, as well as the colour of the secretions, is not indicative of intoxication from such chemicals."

"The large number of decedents in the one location (allegedly 40 to 45), most of whom were seen in videos and photos strewn on the floor of the apartments away from open windows, and within a few meters of an escape to un-poisoned or less toxic air, is at odds with intoxication by chlorine-based choking or blood agents , even at high concentrations."

"The inconsistency between the presence of a putative chlorine-containing toxic chocking or blood agent on the one hand and the testimonies of alleged witnesses and symptoms observed from video footage and photographs, on the other, cannot be rationalised. The team considered two possible explanations for the incongruity:
a. The victims were exposed to another highly toxic chemical agent that gave rise to the symptoms observed and has so far gone undetected.
b. The fatalities resulted from a non-chemical-related incident ."

5. A doctor in Douma told journalist Robert Fisk that there was no gas poisoning.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/jNIp1lZwJts

Shortly after the Douma incident a video was circulated online and redistributed on news media around the world featuring people being hosed down with water in a hospital and an infant receiving a respiratory treatment. A doctor who worked in the hospital Assim Rahaibani gave the following account to journalist Robert Fisk days after the incident, saying those in the video were actually just suffering from hypoxia due to dust inhaled after a conventional bombing:

"I was with my family in the basement of my home three hundred metres from here on the night but all the doctors know what happened. 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 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."

Lest anyone accuse Fisk of having any special loyalties to the Syrian government, in this same report he says it "is indeed a ruthless dictatorship."

6. A BBC reporter said he has proof that the hospital scene was staged.

After almost 6 months of investigations, i can prove without a doubt that the #Douma Hospital scene was staged. No fatalities occurred in the hospital.
All the #WH , activists and people i spoke to are either in #Idlib or #EuphratesShield areas.
Only one person was in #Damascus .

-- Riam Dalati (@Dalatrm) February 13, 2019

The BBC, another establishment that can hardly be accused of Assad loyalism, saw its Syria producer Riam Dalati claiming earlier this year that he had proof beyond a doubt the aforementioned hospital scene was staged. While holding to the establishment line that the attack did happen, Dalati expressed uncertainty as to what if any chemical would have been used and said "everything else around the attack was manufactured for maximum effect." Emphases mine:

"The ATTACK DID HAPPEN, Sarin wasn't used, but we'll have to wait for OPCW to prove Chlorine or otherwise," Dalati tweeted . However, everything else around the attack was manufactured for maximum effect . After almost 6 months of investigations, i can prove without a doubt that the Douma Hospital scene was staged ."

"No fatalities occurred in the hospital," Dalati continued. "All the White Helmets, activists and people i spoke to are either in Idlib or Euphrates Shield areas. Only one person was in Damascus. Russia and at least one NATO country knew about what happened in the hospital. Documents were sent. However, no one knew what really happened at the flats apart from activists manipulating the scene there . This is why Russia focused solely on discrediting the hospital scene."

In other words, Russia knew that these "activists" were staging the scene for the news media, and understandably focused on discrediting their work.

"I can tell you that Jaysh al-Islam ruled Douma with an iron fist," Dalati added . "They coopted activists, doctors and humanitarians with fear and intimidation."

Dalati set his account to private for an extended period after these extremely controversial statements got him a flood of attention, but the thread is up on Twitter as of this writing ( here's an archive in case they vanish again).

7. More evidence the Douma scene was knowingly staged for media.

Pro-rebel activists appear to have staged "Last Hug" photo. It went viral claiming to show young victims of the Douma gas attack in their "last embrace".
Victims can be clearly seen on 2 separate floors in aftermath footage. Placed in position at collection/identification point. pic.twitter.com/9kyGQEtO8p

-- Riam Dalati (@Dalatrm) April 11, 2018

Riam Dalati also tweeted evidence after the attack that people had staged the corpses of two children to make it appear as though they died hugging each other for the purpose of emotional manipulation. If you've got a strong stomach (seriously think hard about whether this is something you want in your head before diving in), Stephen McIntyre also compiled some disturbing proof of dead infants being physically placed on top of other corpses in between video shoots of the Douma incident's aftermath.

Whoever was positioning these bodies for the cameras clearly had a goal of generating an emotional response from the outside world. Which would be precisely the goal of staging a false chemical weapons attack.

8. Witness testimony at The Hague.

It seems the UK govt launched strikes on #Syria - bringing us into potential conflict with nuclear-armed Russia-in response to a CW attack that witnesses (speaking at The Hague), say didn't happen. If that's not a resigning offence, then what on earth is? https://t.co/TMitqbvAQ6

-- Neil Clark (@NeilClark66) April 27, 2018

Seventeen Syrian civilians , including medical personnel and some of the "victims" seen in the aforementioned hospital footage, spoke at the OPCW headquarters in The Hague saying that no chemical weapons attack took place. RT reports :

"There were people unknown to us who were filming the emergency care, they were filming the chaos taking place inside, and were filming people being doused with water. The instruments they used to douse them with water were originally used to clean the floors actually," Ahmad Kashoi, an administrator of the emergency ward, recalled. "That happened for about an hour, we provided help to them and sent them home. No one has died. No one suffered from chemical exposure."

The briefing was boycotted by the US and 16 of its allies and was smeared as an unconscionable Russian hoax by media outlets ranging from Sky News to Al Jazeera to The Guardian to The Intercept , apparently for no other reason than that what these Syrians were saying didn't match the unsubstantiated claims being promoted by the political/media class of the US-centralized empire. If you want to just listen to what the Syrians themselves say and make up your own mind, RT has an English translation video here :

https://www.youtube.com/embed/NVnfUeZ3lp4

9. The first OPCW Director General finds the glaring irregularities and omissions from the OPCW's Douma report "very disturbing".

After the aforementioned Courage Foundation presentation given by Alex this past October, the aforementioned former OPCW Director General Jose Bustani (the one whose kids John Bolton threatened) had this to say :

"The convincing evidence of irregular behaviour in the OPCW investigation of the alleged Douma chemical attack confirms doubts and suspicions I already had. I could make no sense of what I was reading in the international press. Even official reports of investigations seemed incoherent at best. The picture is certainly clearer now, although very disturbing"

"I have always expected the OPCW to be a true paradigm of multilateralism. My hope is that the concerns expressed publicly by the Panel, in its joint consensus statement, will catalyse a process by which the Organisation can be resurrected to become the independent and non-discriminatory body it used to be."

10. This OAN reporter literally just walking around asking people in Douma what they saw.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/iD9C9koRmro

11. MIT Professor Emeritus Theodore Postol speaking about the plot holes and irregularities in scientific protocol with the Douma investigation.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/qqK8KgxuCPI

12. Common sense: Assad stood nothing to gain from launching a chemical attack, while Jaysh al-Islam fighters stood everything to gain by faking one.

This is the initial reason why critical thinkers were so skeptical of the establishment Douma narrative: from the very beginning, it made no sense at all.

Click this hyperlink to read a BBC article dated five days before the Douma incident, describing how the Syrian government "appears poised to regain control" of the town and how Jaysh al-Islam fighters were already evacuating. The battle was won. Assad would have stood absolutely nothing to gain from tempting a retaliation from western powers (which could have been far more severe than it ended up being) all to drop a couple of cylinders of chlorine gas, which incidentally is a highly ineffective weapon that ordinarily takes a very long time to kill.

Jaysh al-Islam (and whoever else they may have been working with), on the other hand, would have stood everything to gain by murdering a few of the civilians they had been holding captive in the town they'd invaded in the hopes that western forces would become their airforce for a bit and hold off the Syrian Arab Army from reclaiming Douma.

"Why would Assad use chemical weapons at this time? He's won the war," Major General Jonathan Shaw told The Mail on Sunday at the time. "That's not just my opinion, it is shared by senior commanders in the US military. There is no rationale behind Assad's involvement whatsoever. He's convinced the rebels to leave occupied areas in buses. He's gained their territory. So why would he be bothering gassing them?"

"The jihadists and the various opposition groups who've been fighting against Assad have much greater motivation to launch a chemical weapons attack and make it look like Assad was responsible," the ex-SAS and Parachute Regiment commander added. "Their motivation being that they want to keep the Americans involved in the war -- following Trump saying the US was going to leave Syria for other people to sort out."

https://www.youtube.com/embed/foj29LIXpy4

Admiral Lord West made similar comments on the BBC around the same time, prompting BBC host Annita McVeigh to flip into frantic narrative management mode suggesting that he's "muddying the waters" during an "information war with Russia".

"President Assad is in the process of winning this civil war, and he was about to take over Douma, all that area," West said. "He'd had a long, long, long slog slowly capturing that area of the city, and there just before he goes in and takes it all over, apparently he decides to have a chemical attack. It just doesn't ring true. It seems extraordinary, because clearly he would know that there's likely to be a response from the allies. What benefit is there for his military? Most of the rebel fighters, this disparate group of Islamists, had withdrawn, there were a few women and children left around. What benefit was there militarily in doing what he did? I find that extraordinary."

"Whereas we know that in the past some of the Islamo groups have used chemicals, and of course there'd be huge benefit in them labeling an attack as coming from Assad, because they would guess quite rightly that there would be a response from the US as there was last time, and possibly from the UK and France," West added.

"If I were advising some of the Islamist groups, many of whom are worse than Daesh," West said, "I would say look, we've got to wait until there's another attack by Assad's forces, particularly if they've got a helicopter overhead or something like that and they're dropping barrel bombs, and we set off some chlorine. Because we'll get the next attack from the allies. And there's no doubt that if we believe he's done a chemical attack we should do that. And those attacks will get bigger, and it's the only way they've got, actually, of stopping the inevitable victory of Assad."

These are not Assad sympathizers or Kremlin assets saying this. These are not a bunch of hippie dippie anti-imperialists. These are lifelong military men, thinking in military terms, describing what they were seeing. And what they were seeing is the thing that a false flag is.

The @OPCW concealing that #Douma was likely staged is a big story.

But perhaps a bigger story is this: if staged, how did the victims (mostly children) die? And what role if any in their deaths did US UK backed #WhiteHelmets 'rescuers' who appear to have staged the attack play? https://t.co/BDY1lSqfmz

-- Charles Shoebridge (@ShoebridgeC) December 15, 2019

This isn't just some idle philosophical question. People died. A massive war crime occurred and the more minutes tick by before a legitimate investigation is launched -- with full transparency and accountability this time -- the less available evidence there will be. Which is why establishment narrative managers on Syria go full dead-weight when asked if they support a full criminal investigation into what happened. They don't actually believe it will go their way, and rightly so.

Meanwhile the illegal occupation of Syria drags on, perhaps until Trump can be replaced with a more compliant puppet, and we're all basically just sitting around waiting to be deceived again.

This cannot continue. This must not continue.

* * *

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[Dec 19, 2019] Chemical Weapons Watchdog Is Just an American Lap Dog -- Strategic Culture

Notable quotes:
"... The FFM was headed by Malik Ellahi , who served as head of the OPCW's government relations and political affairs branch. The appointment of someone lacking both technical and operational experience suggests that Ellahi's primary role was political. Under his leadership, the FFM established a close working relationship with the anti-Assad Syrian opposition, including the White Helmets and SAMS. ..."
"... Once the FFM wrapped up its investigation in Douma, however, it became apparent to Fairweather that it had a problem. There were serious questions about whether chlorine had, in fact, been used as a weapon. The solution, brokered by Fairweather, was to release an interim report that ruled out sarin altogether, but left the door open regarding chlorine. ..."
"... Braha did this by dispatching OPCW inspectors to Turkey in September 2018 to interview new witnesses identified by the White Helmets, and by commissioning new engineering studies that better explained the presence of the two chlorine cannisters found in Douma. By March, Braha had assembled enough information to enable the technical directorate to issue its final report. Almost immediately, dissent appeared in the ranks of the OPCW. An engineering report that contradicted the findings published by Braha was leaked , setting off a firestorm of controversy derived from its conclusion that the chlorine cannisters found in Douma had most likely been staged by the White Helmets. ..."
"... The OPCW, while eventually acknowledging that the leaked report was genuine, explained its exclusion from the final report on the grounds that it attributed blame, something the FFM was not mandated to do. According to the OPCW , the engineering report in question had been submitted to the investigation and identification team, a newly created body within the OPCW mandated to make such determinations. Moreover, Director General Arias stood by the report's conclusion that it had "reasonable grounds" to believe "that the use of a toxic chemical as a weapon has taken place on 7 April 2018." ..."
"... The OPCW's credibility as an investigative body has been brought into question through these leaks, as has its independent character. If an organization like the OPCW can be used at will by the U.S., the United Kingdom and France to trigger military attacks intended to support regime-change activities in member states, then it no longer serves a useful purpose to the international community it ostensibly serves. ..."
Dec 19, 2019 | www.strategic-culture.org

Scott RITTER

A spate of leaks from within the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons ( OPCW ), the international inspectorate created for the purpose of implementing the Chemical Weapons Convention, has raised serious questions about the institution's integrity, objectivity and credibility. The leaks address issues pertaining to the OPCW investigation into allegations that the Syrian government used chemical weapons to attack civilians in the Damascus suburb of Douma on April 7, 2018. These allegations, which originated from such anti-Assad organizations as the Syrian Civil Defense (the so-called White Helmets ) and the Syrian American Medical Society ( SAMS ), were immediately embraced as credible by the OPCW, and were used by the United States, France and the United Kingdom to justify punitive military strikes against facilities inside Syria assessed by these nations as having been involved in chemical weapons-related activities before the OPCW initiated any on-site investigation.

The Douma incident was initially described by the White Helmets, SAMS and the U.S., U.K. and French governments as involving both sarin nerve agent and chlorine gas. However, this narrative was altered when OPCW inspectors released, on July 6, 2018, interim findings of their investigation that found no evidence of the use of sarin. The focus of the investigation quickly shifted to a pair of chlorine cylinders claimed by the White Helmets to have been dropped onto apartment buildings in Douma by the Syrian Air Force, resulting in the release of a cloud of chlorine gas that killed dozens of Syrian civilians. In March, the OPCW released its final report on the Douma incident , noting that it had "reasonable grounds" to believe "that the use of a toxic chemical as a weapon has taken place on 7 April 2018," that "this toxic chemical contained reactive chlorine" and that "the toxic chemical was likely molecular chlorine."

Much has been written about the OPCW inspection process in Syria, and particularly the methodology used by the Fact-Finding Mission (FFM), an inspection body created by the OPCW in 2014 "to establish facts surrounding allegations of the use of toxic chemicals, reportedly chlorine, for hostile purposes in the Syrian Arab Republic." The FFM was created under the direction of Ahmet Üzümcü , a career Turkish diplomat with extensive experience in multinational organizations, including service as Turkey's ambassador to NATO. Üzümcü was the OPCW's third director general, having been selected from a field of seven candidates by its executive council to replace Argentine diplomat Rogelio Pfirter. Pfirter had held the position since being nominated to replace the OPCW's first director general, José Maurício Bustani. Bustani's tenure was marred by controversy that saw the OPCW transition away from its intended role as an independent implementor of the Chemical Weapons Convention to that of a tool of unilateral U.S. policy, a role that continues to mar the OPCW's work in Syria today, especially when it comes to its investigation of the alleged use by the Syrian government of chemical weapons against civilians in Douma in April 2018.

Bustani was removed from his position in 2002, following an unprecedented campaign led by John Bolton, who at the time was serving as the undersecretary of state for Arms Control and International Security Affairs in the U.S. State Department. What was Bustani's crime? In 2001, he had dared to enter negotiations with the government of Iraq to secure that nation's entry into the OPCW, thereby setting the stage for OPCW inspectors to visit Iraq and bring its chemical weapons capability under OPCW control. As director general, there was nothing untoward about Bustani's action. But Iraq circa 2001 was not a typical recruitment target. In the aftermath of the Gulf War in 1991, the U.N. Security Council had passed a resolution under Chapter VII requiring Iraq's weapons of mass destruction (WMD), including its chemical weapons capability, to be "removed, destroyed or rendered harmless" under the supervision of inspectors working on behalf of the United Nations Special Commission, or UNSCOM.

The pursuit of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction led to a series of confrontations with Iraq that culminated in inspectors being ordered out of the country by the U.S. in 1998, prior to a 72-hour aerial attack -- Operation Desert Fox. Iraq refused to allow UNSCOM inspectors to return, rightfully claiming that the U.S. had infiltrated the ranks of the inspectors and was using the inspection process to spy on Iraqi leadership for the purposes of facilitating regime change. The lack of inspectors in Iraq allowed the U.S. and others to engage in wild speculation regarding Iraqi rearmament activities, including in the field of chemical weapons. This speculation was used to fuel a call for military action against Iraq, citing the threat of a reconstituted WMD capability as the justification. Bustani sought to defuse this situation by bringing Iraq into the OPCW, an act that, if completed, would have derailed the U.S. case for military intervention in Iraq. Bolton's intervention included threats to Bustani and his family, as well as threats to withhold U.S. dues to the OPCW accounting for some 22% of that organization's budget; had the latter threat been implemented, it would have resulted in OPCW's disbandment.

Bustani's departure marked the end of the OPCW as an independent organization. Pfirter, Bolton's hand-picked replacement, vowed to keep the OPCW out of Iraq. In an interview with U.S. media shortly after his appointment, Pfirter noted that while all nations should be encouraged to join the OPCW, "We should be very aware that there are United Nations resolutions in effect" that precluded Iraqi membership "at the expense" of its obligations to the Security Council. Under the threat of military action, Iraq allowed UNMOVIC inspectors to return in 2002; by February 2003, no WMD had been found , a result that did not meet with U.S. satisfaction. In March 2003, UNMOVIC inspectors were withdrawn from Iraq under orders of the U.S., paving the way for the subsequent invasion and occupation of that nation that same month (the CIA later concluded that Iraq had been disarmed of its weapons of mass destruction by the summer of 1991).

Under Pfirter's leadership, the OPCW became a compliant tool of U.S. foreign policy objectives. By completely subordinating OPCW operations through the constant threat of fiscal ruin, the U.S. engaged in a continuous quid pro quo arrangement, trading the financial solvency of an ostensible multilateral organization for complicity in operating as a de facto extension of American unilateral policy. Bolton's actions in 2002 put the OPCW and its employees on notice: Cross the U.S., and you will pay a terminal price.

When Üzümcü took over the OPCW's reins in 2010, the organization was very much the model of multinational consensus, which, in the case of any multilateral organization in which the U.S. plays a critical role, meant that nothing transpired without the express approval of the U.S. and its European NATO allies, in particular the United Kingdom and France. Shortly after he took office, Üzümcü was joined by Robert Fairweather , a career British diplomat who served as Üzümcü's chief of Cabinet. (While Üzümcü was the ostensible head of the OPCW, the daily task of managing the functioning of the OPCW was that of the chief of Cabinet. In short, nothing transpired within the OPCW without Fairweather's knowledge and concurrence.)

Üzümcü and Fairweather's tenure at the OPCW was dominated by Syria, where, since 2011, the government of President Bashar Assad had been engaged in a full-scale conflict with a foreign-funded and -equipped insurgency whose purpose was regime change. By 2013, allegations emerged from both the Syrian government and rebel forces concerning the use of chemical weapons by the other side. In August 2013, the OPCW dispatched an inspection team into Syria as part of a U.N.-led effort, which included specialists from the World Health Organization (WHO) and the U.N. itself, to investigate allegations that sarin had been used in attack on civilians in the town of Ghouta. While the mission found conclusive evidence that sarin nerve agent had been used , it did not assign blame for the attack.

Despite the lack of causality, the U.S. and its NATO allies quickly assigned blame for the sarin attacks on the Syrian government. To forestall U.S. military action against Syria, the Russian government helped broker a deal whereby the U.S. agreed to refrain from undertaking military action if the Syrian government joined the OPCW and subjected the totality of its chemical weapons stockpile to elimination. In October 2013, the OPCW-U.N. Joint Mission , created under the authority of U.N. Security Council resolution 2118 (2103), began the process of identifying, cataloging, removing and destroying Syria's chemical weapons. This process was completed in September 2014 (in December 2013, the OPCW was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for its disarmament work in Syria).

If the destruction of Syria's chemical weapons was an example of the OPCW at its best, what followed was a case study of just the opposite. In May 2014, the OPCW created the Fact-Finding Mission, or FFM , charged with establishing "facts surrounding allegations of the use of toxic chemicals, reportedly chlorine, for hostile purposes in the Syrian Arab Republic." The FFM was headed by Malik Ellahi , who served as head of the OPCW's government relations and political affairs branch. The appointment of someone lacking both technical and operational experience suggests that Ellahi's primary role was political. Under his leadership, the FFM established a close working relationship with the anti-Assad Syrian opposition, including the White Helmets and SAMS.

In 2015, responsibility for coordinating the work of the FFM with the anti-Assad opposition was transferred to a British inspector named Len Phillips (another element of the FFM, led by a different inspector, was responsible for coordinating with the Syrian government). Phillips developed a close working relationship with the White Helmets and SAMS and played a key role in OPCW's investigation of the April 2017 chemical incident in Khan Shaykhun. By April 2018, the FFM had undergone a leadership transition, with Phillips replaced by a Tunisian inspector named Sami Barrek . It was Barrek who led the FFM into Syria in April 2018 to investigate allegations of chemical weapons use at Douma. Like Phillips, Barrek maintained a close working relationship with the White Helmets and SAMS.

Once the FFM wrapped up its investigation in Douma, however, it became apparent to Fairweather that it had a problem. There were serious questions about whether chlorine had, in fact, been used as a weapon. The solution, brokered by Fairweather, was to release an interim report that ruled out sarin altogether, but left the door open regarding chlorine. This report was released on July 6, 2018. Later that month, both Üzümcü and Fairweather were gone, replaced by a Spaniard named Fernando Arias and a French diplomat named Sébastien Braha . It would be up to them to clean up the Douma situation.

The situation Braha inherited from Fairweather was unenviable. According to an unnamed OPCW official who spoke with the media after the fact, two days prior to the publication of the interim report, on July 4, 2018, Fairweather had been paid a visit by a trio of U.S. officials, who indicated to Fairweather and the members of the FFM responsible for writing the report that it was the U.S. position that the chlorine cannisters in question had been used to dispense chlorine gas at Douma, an assertion that could not be backed up by the evidence. Despite this, the message that Fairweather left with the OPCW personnel was that there had to be a "smoking gun." It was now Braha's job to manufacture one.

Braha did this by dispatching OPCW inspectors to Turkey in September 2018 to interview new witnesses identified by the White Helmets, and by commissioning new engineering studies that better explained the presence of the two chlorine cannisters found in Douma. By March, Braha had assembled enough information to enable the technical directorate to issue its final report. Almost immediately, dissent appeared in the ranks of the OPCW. An engineering report that contradicted the findings published by Braha was leaked , setting off a firestorm of controversy derived from its conclusion that the chlorine cannisters found in Douma had most likely been staged by the White Helmets.

The OPCW, while eventually acknowledging that the leaked report was genuine, explained its exclusion from the final report on the grounds that it attributed blame, something the FFM was not mandated to do. According to the OPCW , the engineering report in question had been submitted to the investigation and identification team, a newly created body within the OPCW mandated to make such determinations. Moreover, Director General Arias stood by the report's conclusion that it had "reasonable grounds" to believe "that the use of a toxic chemical as a weapon has taken place on 7 April 2018."

Arias' explanation came under attack in November, when WikiLeaks published an email sent by a member of the FFM team that had participated in the Douma investigation. In this email, which was sent on June 22, 2018, and addressed to Robert Fairweather, the author noted that, when it came to the Douma incident, "[p]urposely singling out chlorine gas as one of the possibilities is disingenuous." The author of the email, who had participated in drafting the original interim report, noted that the original text had emphasized that there was insufficient evidence to support this conclusion, and that the new text represented "a major deviation from the original report." Moreover, the author took umbrage at the new report's conclusions, which claimed to be "based on the high levels of various chlorinated organic derivatives detected in environmental samples." According to email's author "They were, in most cases, present only in parts per billion range, as low as 1-2 ppb, which is essentially trace quantities." In short, the OPCW had cooked the books, manufacturing evidence from thin air that it then used to draw conclusions that sustained the U.S. position that chlorine gas had been used by the Syrian government at Douma.

Arias, while not addressing the specifics of the allegations set forth in the leaked email, recently declared that it is "the nature of any thorough inquiry for individuals in a team to express subjective views," noting that "I stand by the independent, professional conclusion" presented by the OPCW about the Douma incident. This explanation, however, does not fly in the face of the evidence.

The OPCW's credibility as an investigative body has been brought into question through these leaks, as has its independent character. If an organization like the OPCW can be used at will by the U.S., the United Kingdom and France to trigger military attacks intended to support regime-change activities in member states, then it no longer serves a useful purpose to the international community it ostensibly serves.

To survive as a credible entity, the OPCW must open itself to a full-scale audit of its activities in Syria by an independent authority with inspector general-like investigatory powers. Anything short of this leaves the OPCW, an organization that was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for its contributions to world peace, permanently stained by the reality that it is little more than a lap dog of the United States, used to promote the very conflicts it was designed to prevent.

truthdig.com The views of individual contributors do not necessarily represent those of the Strategic Culture Foundation. Tags: Chemical Weapons Mass Media OPCW Syria White Helmets

[Dec 18, 2019] Never Trust A Failing Empire

Dec 18, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

https://www.dianomi.com/smartads.epl?id=4777 Never Trust A Failing Empire by Tyler Durden Wed, 12/18/2019 - 00:05 0 SHARES

Authored by Federico Pieraccini via The Strategic Culture Foundation,

The Washington Post , through documents released through the Freedom of Information Act, has published a long investigation into Afghanistan. Journalists have collected over 400 testimonies from American diplomats, NATO generals and other NATO personnel, that show that reports about Afghanistan were falsified to deceive the public about the real situation on the ground .

After the tampering with and falsification of the report of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) , we are witnessing another event that will certainly discomfit those who have hitherto relied on the official reports of the Pentagon, the US State Department and international organizations like the OPCW for the last word.

There are very deliberate reasons for such disinformation campaigns. In the case of the OPCW, as I wrote some time back, the aim was to paint the Syrian government as the fiend and the al-Qaeda- and Daesh-linked "moderate rebels" as the innocent souls, thereby likely justifying a responsibility-to-protect armed intervention by the likes of the US, the UK and France. In such circumstances, the standing and status of the reporting organization (like the OPCW) is commandeered to validate Western propaganda that is duly disseminated through the corporate-controlled mainstream media.

In this particular case, various Western capitals colluded with the OPCW to lay the groundwork for the removal of Assad and his replacement with the al-Nusra Front as well as the very same al-Qaeda- and Daesh-linked armed opposition officially responsible for the 9/11 attacks.

As if the massaging of the OPCW reports were not enough in themselves to provoke international outrage, this dossier serves to give aid and comfort to jihadi groups supported by the Pentagon who are known to be responsible for the worst human-rights abuses, as seen in Syria and Iraq in the last 6 years.

False or carefully manipulated reports paint a picture vastly different from the reality on the ground. The United States has never really declared war on Islamic terrorism, its proclamations of a "War on Terror" notwithstanding. In reality, it has simply used this justification to occupy or destabilize strategically important areas of the world in the interests of maintaining US hegemony, intending in so doing to hobble the energy policies and national security of rival countries like China, Iran and the Russian Federation.

The Post investigation lays bare how the US strategy had failed since its inception, the data doctored to represent a reality very different from that on the ground. The inability of the United States to clean up Afghanistan is blamed by the Post on incorrect military planning and incorrect political choices. While this could certainly be the case, the Post's real purpose in its investigation is to harm Trump, even as it reveals the Pentagon's efforts to continue its regional presence for grand geopolitical goals by hiding inconvenient truths.

The real issue lies in the built-in mendacity of the bureaucratic and military apparatus of the United States. No general has ever gone on TV to say that the US presence in Iraq is needed to support any war against Iran; or that Afghanistan is a great point of entry for the destabilization of Eurasia, because this very heart of the Heartland is crucial to the Sino-Russian transcontinental integration projects like the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) and the Belt and Road Initiative. In the same vein, the overthrow of the Syrian government would have ensured Israel a greater capacity to expand its interests in the Middle East, as well as to weaken Iran's main regional ally.

The Post investigation lays bare the hypocrisy of the military-industrial complex as well as the prevailing political establishments of Europe and the United States. These parties are not interested in human rights, the wellbeing of civilians or justice in general. Their only goal is to try and maintain their global hegemony indefinitely by preventing any other powers from being able to realize their potential and thereby pose a threat to Atlanticist preeminence.

The war in Iraq was launched to destabilize the Middle East, China's energy-supply basin crucial to fueling her future growth. The war in Syria served the purpose of further dismantling the Middle East to favor Saudi Arabia and Israel, the West's main strategic allies in the Persian Gulf. The war in Afghanistan was to slow down the Eurasian integration of China and Russia. And the war in Ukraine was for the purposes of generating chaos and destruction on Russia's border, with the initial hope of wresting the very strategically area of Crimea from Russia.

The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry, and this has been on full display in recent times. Almost all of Washington's recent strategic objectives have ended up producing results worse than the status quo ante. In Iraq there is the type of strong cooperation between Baghdad and Tehran reminiscent of the time prior to 1979. Through Hezbollah, Iran has strengthened its position in Syria in defense of Damascus. Moscow has found itself playing the role of crucial decider in the Middle East (and soon in North Africa), until only a few years ago the sole prerogative of Washington. Turkey's problems with NATO, coupled with Tel Aviv's open relation with Moscow are both a prime example of Washington's diminishing influence in the region and Moscow's corresponding increase in influence.

The situation in Afghanistan is not very different, with a general recognition that peace is the only option for the region being reflected in the talks between the Afghans, the Taliban, the Russians, Chinese, Indians and Pakistanis. Beijing and Moscow have well known for over a decade the real intent behind Washington's presence in the country, endeavoring to blunt its impact.

The Post investigation only further increases the public's war weariness, the war in Afghanistan now having lasted 18 years, the longest war in US history. Jeff Bezos, the owner of the Post , is a bitter opponent of Trump and wants the president to come clean on the Afghanistan debacle by admitting that the troops cannot be withdrawn. Needless to say, admitting such would not help Trump's strategy for the 2020 election. Trump cannot afford to humiliate the US military, given that it, along with the US dollar, is his main weapon of "diplomacy". Were it to be revealed that some illiterate peasants holed up in caves and armed with AK-47s some 40 years ago are responsible for successfully keeping the most powerful army in history at bay, all of Washington's propaganda, disseminated by a compliant media, will cease to be of any effect. Such a revelation would also humiliate military personnel, an otherwise dependable demographic Trump cannot afford to alienate.

The Washington Post performed a service to the country by shedding light on the disinformation used to sustain endless war. But the Post's intentions are also political, seeking to undermine Trump's electoral chances by damaging Trump's military credentials as well as his standing amongst military personnel. What Washington's elite and the Post do not know, or perhaps prefer to ignore, is that such media investigations directed against political opponents actually end up doing irreparable damage to the political and military prestige of the United States.

In other words, when journalist do their job, the military industrial complex finds it difficult to lie its way through wars and failures , but when a country relies on Hollywood to sustain its make-believe world, as well as on journalists on the CIA payroll, on compliant publishers and on censored news, then any such revelations of forbidden truths threaten to bring the whole facade crashing down. Tags Politics

[Dec 15, 2019] Media Suppressed Evidence Of The OPCW's 'Chemical Attack' Manipulations - There Is Now More Of It

Notable quotes:
"... But perhaps most shocking of all were the actions of a senior OPCW official whose name is known to The Mail on Sunday and who is known to some of the organisation's staff as 'Voldemort'. ..."
"... Mr Henderson tried to get his research included in the final report, but when it became clear it would be excluded, he lodged a copy in a secure registry, known as the Documents Registry Archive (DRA). ..."
"... This is normal practice for such confidential material, but when 'Voldemort' heard about it, he sent an email to subordinates saying: 'Please get this document out of DRA And please remove all traces, if any, of its delivery/storage/whatever in DRA'. ..."
"... This practice of editors telling journalists what to write, with what angle and with headlines already assigned is completely backwards and is the cause of numerous problems. How can journalists find genuine newsworthy developments if what to write has already been scripted for them? ..."
Dec 15, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

A journalist describes why he resigned when his outlet suppressed his reporting about manipulations within the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).

Meanwhile Wikileaks published additional evidence that the OPCW Manufactured A Pretext For War By Suppressing Its Own Scientists' Research :

Leaks from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) prove that the OPCW management ignored or manipulated reports its Fact Finding Mission had written about the April 2018 Douma incident in Syria.
...
The OPCW management ignored that the technical, chemical and medical analysis of its own specialists exculpated the Syrian government from the allegation that it poisoned some 40 people in Douma by dropping Chlorine canisters from a helicopter.

The new documents published by Wikileaks include the original Interim Report written by members of the Fact Finding Mission of the OPCW who were on the grounds in Douma to investigate that case. The original Interim Report was suppressed by the OPCW management and a rewritten Interim Report and manipulated Final Report were published. They made it look as if the Syrian government was guilty of a chemical attack.

From Wikileaks' introduction :

WikiLeaks is also releasing the original preliminary report for the first time along with the redacted version (that was released by the OPCW) for comparison. Additionally, we are publishing a detailed comparison of the original interim report with the redacted interim report and the final report along with relevant comments from a member of the original fact finding mission. These documents should help clarify the series of changes that the report went through, which skewed the facts and introduced bias according to statements made by the members of the FFM.

The well respected Mail of Sunday columnist Peter Hitchens reports of additional details of the case :

The Mail on Sunday can reveal that a senior official at the Organisation for Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) demanded the 'removal of all traces' of a document which undermined claims that gas cylinders had been dropped from the air -- a key element of the 'evidence' that the Syrian regime was responsible.
...
The original interim report also mentioned for the first time doubts about the origin of the cylinders, saying: 'The FFM [Fact-Finding Mission] team is unable to provide satisfactory explanations for the relatively moderate damage to the cylinders allegedly dropped from an unknown height, compared to the destruction caused to the rebar-reinforced roofs.

The videos from the Douma incident showed the undamaged pressure vessel 'sleeping' on a bed.

bigger
Those who said 'Assad did it' never explained this. A highly pressurized cylinder was allegedly dropped from a helicopter flying at considerable height to escape the 'rebels' air defenses. It then allegedly crashed through a re-enforced concrete roof, bounced off the floor and landed on the bed. How did the cylinder end up with having nearly no damage to itself? My learned engineering 'feel' on this says that any pressurized vessel dropped from more than 500 meters (1,640 ft) height would either have ruptured on impact, or it would have bounced off (vid) and not penetrate through the roof. It would have been severely damaged. This is the primary reason why I never considered the alleged Douma 'chemical attack' to be a truthful story. There are many additional facts and indications (see out previous reports linked at the end) that make it obvious that the Douma incident was staged.

Hitchens also reports of more shenanigans at the OPCW. The impact analysis of the cylinder by the FFM engineering member Ian Henderson, published by Wikileaks , was not only suppressed by the OPCW management but eradicated from its records:

But perhaps most shocking of all were the actions of a senior OPCW official whose name is known to The Mail on Sunday and who is known to some of the organisation's staff as 'Voldemort'.

Mr Henderson tried to get his research included in the final report, but when it became clear it would be excluded, he lodged a copy in a secure registry, known as the Documents Registry Archive (DRA).

This is normal practice for such confidential material, but when 'Voldemort' heard about it, he sent an email to subordinates saying: 'Please get this document out of DRA And please remove all traces, if any, of its delivery/storage/whatever in DRA'.

Next to the Mail on Sunday the Italian newspaper la Repubblica is the only other 'western' mainstream outlet that reported on the manipulated OPCW reports. The author of its two pieces says that the OPCW is blocking all requests for comments:

stefania maurizi @SMaurizi - 10:40 UTC · 15 Dec 2019

3. unfortunately, @OPCW has NOT provided any clarification. Throughout the last 18 years of our journalistic profession, we've worked on another important international agency: @iaeaorg, they have always been cooperative. We find the lack of clarifications by @OPCW unacceptable

Other mainstream media have been silent on the OPCW fraud.

A journalist at Newsweek , Tareq Haddad, wrote and tried to publish a piece about the OPCW manipulations. The piece was suppressed by the editors of Newsweek . Haddad, who resigned in protest, now published a recommendable long-read which explains what happened:

Lies, Newsweek and Control of the Media Narrative: First-Hand Account .

The piece is remarkable for what it provides on the working process in today's media. Discussing a different piece he wrote for Newsweek Haddad writes:

[This] raises another serious problem at the publication: editors tell journalists what to report .

This article was assigned to me by Alfred on Newsweek's internal messaging system, as is commonplace for editors to do, and I felt obliged to report the story, although I had concerns and it is not one I personally would have chosen to do. I raised these concerns with Alfred -- whose background is in video editing, not journalism -- but instead of ditching the story, a new angle was suggested and a new headline was provided too. Feeling that I couldn't challenge his authority any further without being rude, I proceeded as best as I could, ...
...
This practice of editors telling journalists what to write, with what angle and with headlines already assigned is completely backwards and is the cause of numerous problems. How can journalists find genuine newsworthy developments if what to write has already been scripted for them?

I spoke to several Newsweek journalists about this very problem prior to my departure and they shared the same concerns.

In the description of my working process - How Moon of Alabama Is Made - I explained that finding the headline to a piece is one of the very last steps before publishing it:

Then follow the last three tasks - find a headline, write a summarizing intro sentence and formulate the end.

That is simply because serious reporting or analysis of issues can not assume a certain outcome. There are always new aspects to a story which develop only while it is researched and written. To start the writing process with an already assigned headline is not journalism. It is stenography.

Tareq Haddad explains the 'External Control of the Media Narrative' by reflecting on the 'so-called' foreign affairs editor of Newsweek , Dimi Reider:

I glanced at his resume and was honored to be working with such an accomplished foreign affairs journalist. I had genuinely hoped to build a closer relationship to him.

That was why I was so bewildered when he flatly refused to publish the OPCW revelations. Surely any editor worth their salt would see this as big? Of course, I understood that the implications of such a piece would be substantial and not easy to report -- it was the strongest evidence of lies about Syria to date -- but surely most educated people could see this coming? Other evidence was growing by the day.

But no. As the earlier messages showed, there was no desire to report these revelations, regardless of how strong the evidence appeared to be. Dimi was simply happy to defer to Bellingcat -- a clearly dubious organization as others have taken the time to address, such as here and here -- instead of allowing journalists who are more than capable of doing their own research to do their job.

It was this realization that made me start to question Dimi. When I looked a little deeper, he was the missing piece.

It turns out that Dimi Reider is a creature trained by the Council of Foreign Relations , the Wall Street's Think Tank , and was the founder and editor of a magazine funded by the Rockefeller Brother's Fund. He is a member of the insider club.

Hadder concludes :

This conflict of interests may be known to other journalists in the trade, but I will repeat: this is unacceptable to me.

The U.S. government, in an ugly alliance with those the profit the most from war, has its tentacles in every part of the media -- imposters, with ties to the U.S. State Department, sit in newsrooms all over the world. Editors, with no apparent connections to the member's club, have done nothing to resist. Together, they filter out what can or cannot be reported. Inconvenient stories are completely blocked. As a result, journalism is quickly dying. America is regressing because it lacks the truth.

Those words are true and they are the very reason why Tareq Haddad will never again be able to work as a journalist in a mainstream 'western' news outlet. Those 'journalists' are not supposed to reveal the truth. It is on us blogger minions to reveal it.

(This is a Moon of Alabama fundraiser week. Please consider to support our work .)

Previous Moon of Alabama coverage of the Douma incident and its aftermath:

April 8 2018 - Syria - Timelines Of 'Gas Attacks' Follow A Similar Scheme (Update II) April 9 2018 - Syria - Any U.S. Strike Will Lead to Escalation Apr 11 2018 - Syria - A U.S. Attack Would Be Futile - But Serve A Purpose - by M. K. Bhadrakumar Apr 11 2018 - Trump Asks Russia To Roll Over - It Won't Apr 12 2018 - Syria - Threat Of Large War Recedes But May Come Back Apr 13 2018 - Syria - Manipulated Videos Fail To Launch World War III - Updated Apr 14 2018 - F.U.K.U.S. Strikes Syria - Who Won? Apr 16 2018 - Syria - Pentagon Hides Attack Failure - 70+ Cruise Missiles Shot Down Apr 19 2018 - Syria - Who Is Stalling The OPCW Investigation In Douma? Apr 20 2018 - Syria Sitrep - Cleanup Around Damascus - WMD Rumors Prepare For New U.S. Attack Jul 6 2018 - Syria - OPCW Issues First Report Of 'Chemical Weapon Attack' in Douma Jul 7 2018 - Syria - Mainstream Media Lie About Watchdog Report On The 'Chemical Attack' In Douma May 13 2019 - Syria - OPCW Engineering Assessment: The Douma 'Chemical Weapon Attack' Was Staged Nov 16 2019 - OPCW Whistleblowers: Management Manipulated Reports - Douma 'Chemical Weapon Attack' Was Staged Nov 29 2019 - OPCW Manufactured A Pretext For War By Suppressing Its Own Scientists' Research Nov 30 2019 - OPCW Manipulation Of Its Douma Report Requires A Fresh Look At The Skripal 'Novichok' Case Dec 2 2019 - As The OPCW Is Accused Of False Reporting U.S. Propaganda Jumps To Its Help

---

[Dec 15, 2019] The USA neocons tried to control OPSW for a long time

Dec 15, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Noirette , Dec 15 2019 14:52 utc | 5

José Bustani, first director of the OPCW (1997-2002), denounced the reports on Douma. Ex.:

https://timhayward.wordpress.com/2019/10/23/unacceptable-practices-at-opcw-by-jose-bustani-and-international-panel/

Bustani says he was forced to resign by the US Gvmt in 2002. RT.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1BeALGKbvlg

"He told me I had 24 hours to resign," said José Bustani, who was director general of the agency, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons in The Hague. "And if I didn't I would have to face the consequences." (Quote is from NYT.)

Bustani sued for illegal dismissal via the ILO, and won. (Salary, damages, etc.)

https://www.jstor.org/stable/3216704?seq=1

The 'removal' vote:

https://2001-2009.state.gov/t/isn/cwc/fs/9631.htm

I guess that was the beginning and the end of any genuine attempts at impartial assessment! The very first director was booted by Bolton who is the 'he' in the quote above

[Dec 15, 2019] Ahh, this sweet smell of neocon propaganda in the US MSM...

Dec 15, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Jayne , Dec 15 2019 14:26 utc | 4

Hey *Politifact*:

"...Obama did sign H.R. 4310 into law, also passing the Smith-Mundt Modernization Act of 2012. But the bill did not make it legal for independent, private-sector media outlets to present outright false information to the public. Instead, it allowed government-sponsored news like Voice of American to be broadcast in the United States. It removed restrictions on U.S.-generated news from being presented to American audiences.'''"

Oki doki so what about those < cough > "independent, private-sector media outlets" that are blatant 'governement funded fronts' that only 'claim' to be our independent, private-sector media...

[Dec 14, 2019] A Determined Effort to Undermine Russia

Highly recommended!
The USA "Full Spectrum Dominance" doctrine requires weakening and, if possible, partitioning Russia.
Retired Australian diplomat Tony Kevin tells the audience that Skripals poisoning was a false flag operation. 7:00
He also point several weak points in Western politicians narrative about MH17
Notable quotes:
"... Cold War patterns of thinking about Russia show no sign of weakening in America ..."
"... Putin made it clear when he said the next war would not be fought inside Russia. The troglodytes in the West are unable to grasp not only what that means, but why he said it. ..."
"... The latest efforts at attacking Russia via smear, allegation and Doublespeak have been, are via that US supported supposed oversight committee, WADA which has done what the US-UK wanted: banned Russia for four years from international sporting events including the upcoming Tokyo Olympics and World Cup (Football – soccer to Americans). ..."
"... I am really sick of the smearing of Russia done by the US and UK. The Skripal as well as the MH17 case are plain ridiculus. Anybody can see through these silly plants. US and UK obviously don't feel obliged to respect any international rules any more. (The one person who is suffering most at the moment from the decline in respect is Julian Assange, an Australian citizen!) ..."
"... There is "cause." Russia was our latest vassal under Yeltsin. Putin stopped the looting, and worked to benefit average Russian citizens. Just watch "The Magnitsky Act, behind the scenes" to know the "cause". ..."
"... Much of the West (i.e. Germany) has been dragged by force into damage control mode. The Magnitsky Act monster, the election interference hysteria, are just 2 crying examples met with shock and disbelief across the pond. The Fiona Hill testimony was a very telling moment for the inner workings of a self perpetuating logic. ..."
"... "Russia is no lightweight by any means, and not always friendly. But it has regularly done the right thing in international conflicts which the Kremlin seems to understand better than all of "the Western" intelligence combined." ..."
Dec 08, 2019 | consortiumnews.com

Retired Australian diplomat Tony Kevin, in conversation with former Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr, says the West is unnecessarily determined to undermine Russia.

A t an event last week in Sydney, Kevin and Carr discussed how the West, led by the United States, has been on an aggressive campaign to destabilize Russia, without cause.

When Kevin said he returned to Russia after more than 40 years in 2016 he realized he "had to take sides" in the U.S.-Russia standoff when all Nato countries boycotted the Moscow celebrations of the 70th anniversary of the end of the Second World War.

"I had to take a moral position that it is not right for the West to be ganging up on Russia," Kevin says in his conversation with the former Australian foreign minister.

The New Cold War can traced back to a broken promise made to Moscow on Nato expansion eastward. "London and Washington are orchestrating a disinformation" campaign today against Russia, as the New Cold War has heated up over Syria, Ukraine, NATO troops on Russia's borders and Russiagate.

Watch the hour-long in depth discussion which was filmed and produced by Consortium News' CN Live! Executive Producer Cathy Vogan.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/dJiS3nFzsWg?feature=oembed

Tags: Bob Carr Russia Russiagate Russophobia Tony Kevin Vladimir Putin


Tom Culpeper , December 11, 2019 at 16:03

Putin & the Russian citizenry play chess on this 3-dimensional world.! The Americas and their inane elites attempt checkers on their flat Earth . Pity, some such as Noam Chomsky are admirable world citizens..! Pity again.! WE will miss men of this honest calibre and down- to-earth intelligence. Bob Carr is of this cohort.

Eugenie Basile , December 10, 2019 at 03:36

The 'Russia did it' mantra is a gift for the powers in the Kremlin. It rallies most Russians behind their leaders because they are proud of their country and don't accept the West's moral hypocrite grandstanding.

Just recently the WADA proclaimed sporting ban against Russia is a perfect example. It excludes all Russian athletes because they happen to represent their country while U.S. athletes who have been caught cheating in the past are allowed to participate .

Jerry Alatalo , December 10, 2019 at 00:30

It is very encouraging to know there are good people like Mr. Tony Kevin and Mr. Bob Carr alive and sharing their powerful wisdom at this dangerous historical point on planet Earth. Mr. Kevin and Mr. Carr's immensely important and courageously honest discussion should become – immediately, and for many years to come – required study in university classrooms and government halls around this world.

Peace.

ElderD , December 9, 2019 at 15:03

Tony's (especially!) and Bob's sane and sensible view of this dangerous and destructive state of affairs deserve the widest possible distribution and attention.

George McGlynn , December 9, 2019 at 13:27

A quarter century has passed since the fall of the Soviet Union, and little has changed. Cold War patterns of thinking about Russia show no sign of weakening in America. The further we distance ourselves from the end of the Cold War, the closer we come to its revival. Hostility to Russia is the oldest continuous foreign policy tradition in the United States. It is now so much of a part of America's identity that it is unlikely to be ever cured.

peter mcloughlin , December 9, 2019 at 10:45

It is a dangerous miscalculation to think the "New Cold War" will end like the first. Russia (the USSR) had a buffer zone then, it doesn't today. For Moscow the coming war (world war) will be about survival. All that is left is the fall-back position of nuclear deterrence doctrine – annihilation. I don't think western capitals see how perilous the situation is.

Lois Gagnon , December 9, 2019 at 17:30

I agree. Putin made it clear when he said the next war would not be fought inside Russia. The troglodytes in the West are unable to grasp not only what that means, but why he said it.

AnneR , December 9, 2019 at 07:48

The latest efforts at attacking Russia via smear, allegation and Doublespeak have been, are via that US supported supposed oversight committee, WADA which has done what the US-UK wanted: banned Russia for four years from international sporting events including the upcoming Tokyo Olympics and World Cup (Football – soccer to Americans).

Then there were allegations – of those "highly likely" (therefore one knows to be untrue and unadulterated propaganda to increase Russophobia) sort – about Russian hackers (always giving the impression that the "Kremlin" is behind itl) being the Labour Party's source of the Tory party's US-UK trade deal which would/will deliberately and finally destroy the NHS and replace it with (of course) US "health" insurance company profiteering.

(Always the Tory intention from the NHS's initiation in May of 1948; only its popularity among many Tory party supporters among the working and lower middle classes prevented them from a full-frontal killing off the NHS; the Snatcher's government began the undermining, via installing a top-heavy bureaucratization, siphoning off a sizable proportion of the funds that would otherwise have gone to medical care, demanding that hospitals not "lose" money – a concept completely beyond the remit of the NHS as originally conceived and constructed and like exactions.)

Then there are snide remarks about the meeting today concerning the Ukrainian Azov (Neo-Nazi) attacks on the Donbass (NOT how either the BBC or NPR speaks of this of course) in France. This struggle, between the Russian-speaking Donbass peoples and the neo-Nazis of western Ukraine, has killed many thousands of people (most likely mostly those of the Donbass). The Donbass fighters are spoken of as "Russian-supported" in an attempt to deny them and the reasons for their struggle *any* legitimacy (meanwhile the support for the neo-Nazis goes unmentioned, leaving the listener with the impression that they are the Ukrainian military, thus legitimately fighting a foreign funded and manned insurgency).

Someone even suggested that President Putin needed to be diplomatic. Really? From what I've read the man is the most diplomatic and intelligent politician (not just political leader) along with Xi Jinping and the Iranian government that exist on the world stage. None of them are hubristic, solipsistic, eager beaver killers of peoples in other countries. Unlike their western "world" political counterparts.

Jeff Harrison , December 8, 2019 at 18:30

Mad Dog Mattis spoke the truth when he said that an opponent wasn't defeated until they agreed they were defeated. The US merely assumed that Russia agreed that they were defeated and are doubling down when they now suddenly realize that Russia never said any such thing.

St. Ronnie's whole thing back in the 80's was to outspend Russia militarily and it worked well. We're trying to do it again but Russia isn't playing the same game this time and now it is the US that has a mountain of debt and Russia that doesn't.

SIPIRI tags US military spending at $650B and Russian military spending at $62B. But we know that the $650B number is bogus because it doesn't include our in-violation-of-the-NNPT nuclear program which is in the energy department or our veteran's expenses which are in HHS. I don't know what's missing from Russia's $62B but I'll bet they can sustain that a whole lot better than we can sustain our $650B and rising bill.

Antonio Costa , December 9, 2019 at 13:17

Good point regarding Russia's downsizing the Soviet Union. From Gorbachev to Putin there was NEVER a surrender, intended in any way. The intent has been multilateral partnerships. For Russia the US/West won nothing at all except the opportunity to live and work in peace. (By the way this policy has a long Russian history.)

They gave up the Warsaw Pact and America with our worthless "word" expanded NATO.

The US foreign policy has lost even the semblance of sanity. Our naked aggression is clear as never before, a mad man throwing a global fit armed with megaton nuclear projectiles on trigger first strike alert. What could go wrong?

nondimenticare , December 8, 2019 at 15:56

If, magically, Consortium News/CN Live! were a mass-distribution network/magazine (hence universally consulted), allowing the light in for the mass of the viewing and listening public, it could change the world – both an exalting and despairing thought.

Lily , December 8, 2019 at 09:52

It is a great joy to listen to this conversation!

I am really sick of the smearing of Russia done by the US and UK. The Skripal as well as the MH17 case are plain ridiculus. Anybody can see through these silly plants. US and UK obviously don't feel obliged to respect any international rules any more. (The one person who is suffering most at the moment from the decline in respect is Julian Assange, an Australian citizen!)

I wish people would have the courage to break away from the group pressure originated by a nation which has been started by killing more than 90% of the indigenous people in their country and since then has turned the worl into a very insecure place.

Chapeau, Tony Kevin! Thanks to Bob Carr and Consortiums News.

Lily , December 9, 2019 at 01:18

It seems that some facts are beginning to be realized in the military department.

www(dot)zerohedge(dot)com/geopolitical/pentagon-alarmed-russia-gaining-sympathy-among-us-troops

JOHN CHUCKMAN , December 8, 2019 at 07:30

"At an event last week in Sydney, Kevin and Carr discussed how the West, led by the United States, has been on an aggressive campaign to destabilize Russia, without cause."

The American establishment's problem with Russia is simply that Russia is the only country on earth capable of obliterating the United States. Not even China has yet reached that capacity.

"Carthago delenda est"

Skip Scott , December 9, 2019 at 06:13

There is "cause." Russia was our latest vassal under Yeltsin. Putin stopped the looting, and worked to benefit average Russian citizens. Just watch "The Magnitsky Act, behind the scenes" to know the "cause".

Bruno DP , December 8, 2019 at 02:34

The West is ganging up on Russia? Replace "West" by "United States of America", and I will agree.

Much of the West (i.e. Germany) has been dragged by force into damage control mode. The Magnitsky Act monster, the election interference hysteria, are just 2 crying examples met with shock and disbelief across the pond. The Fiona Hill testimony was a very telling moment for the inner workings of a self perpetuating logic.

Russia is no lightweight by any means, and not always friendly.

But it has regularly done the right thing in international conflicts which the Kremlin seems to understand better than all of "the Western" intelligence combined.

Martin Schuchert , December 8, 2019 at 17:33

I'm German, living in the US, and I agree with your comment. I especially love the last two sentences:

"Russia is no lightweight by any means, and not always friendly. But it has regularly done the right thing in international conflicts which the Kremlin seems to understand better than all of "the Western" intelligence combined."

[Dec 12, 2019] The Skripals residing on US territory would definitely indicate that the US has been the senior partner in the "Skripal operation"

Notable quotes:
"... The FBI agents and lawyers intentionally lied to the court. Their violations were not mistakes. All 51 of them were in favor of further spying on members of the Trump campaign and on everyone they communicated with. ..."
"... The FBI has used the Steele dossier to gain further FISA application even after it had talked with Steele's 'primary source' (who probably was the later 'buzzed' Sergei Skripal ) and after it had learned that the allegations in the dossier were no more than unconfirmed rumors. ..."
Dec 12, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

The FBI agents and lawyers intentionally lied to the court. Their violations were not mistakes. All 51 of them were in favor of further spying on members of the Trump campaign and on everyone they communicated with.

The FBI has used the Steele dossier to gain further FISA application even after it had talked with Steele's 'primary source' (who probably was the later 'buzzed' Sergei Skripal ) and after it had learned that the allegations in the dossier were no more than unconfirmed rumors.

Michael Droy , Dec 11 2019 18:42 utc | 16
Great stuff as ever. How useful is it that Skripal is Unavailable but not Dead? For example does it affect redaction of material linked to him?
JR , Dec 11 2019 19:41 utc | 20
By now Steele's credibility is zero. Time to revisit Steele's involvement with the debunked "Russia bought the soccer World Champion games", the Litvinenko polonium poisening and the Skripal novichok poisening. The timing of the Skripal matter deserves some scrutiny in relation to Skripal possibly being Steele's source for the infamous Trump dossier. There might be a motive hidden there.
Jen , Dec 11 2019 22:27 utc | 42
I know on a recemt MoA Open Thread comments forum that there was a link to this recent John Helmer / Dances With Bears article mentioning that Sergei and Julia Skripal were being held at an airbase in Gloucestershire being used by the United States Air Force (USAF) at the time that Julia Skripal was interviewed by a Reuters representative in May last year. I consider that link and the news worth mentioning again in this comments thread as some commenters have already mentioned Sergei Skripal in connection with Christopher Steele's dossier.

As early as August 2018 , there had been speculation that the Skripals were being held at USAF Fairford airbase, based on audiovisual evidence in the background garden scene where the interview took place. Helmer's sources (they requested anonymity) spotted a chicken coop in the background which they say is a crow ladder trap. This is one indication that the garden scene was located near a runway. Background noises included the roar of jet engines.

If Helmer's information is correct, then we can now understand why the British government never gave Russian embassy staff access to the Skripals: London was in no position to do so, the Skripals were on US territory.

One implication of this new information is that the Skripals may no longer be in Britain and may now be living in North America somewhere with new identities. Should something happen to them (or have happened to them already), they will not be missed by their new neighbours. The Skripals will never be allowed to return to Russia and Sergei Skripal will never see or be allowed to communicate with his elderly mother again.

It really does look as if Sergei Skripal may have had something to do with that Orbis dossier after all, even if as a minor source or as a reference rather than the primary source of disinformation about Donald Trump's past activities in Moscow. What other work has Skripal done for his American masters?

Jen , Dec 11 2019 22:44 utc | 47
JR @ 20:

It looks as if Sergei Skripal may not be the primary source of the disinformation in Christopher Steele's dossier. Perhaps the person who is the primary source is not a Russian at all.

RJPJR , Dec 11 2019 23:56 utc | 50
JR | Dec 11 2019 19:41 utc | 20 brings up a revisiting of the Litvinenko polonium poisoning.

It is worth mentioning that a tiny but crucial and virtually never mentioned detail of the official inquiry (considered the last word on the matter) is that those conducting the official inquiry were never allowed access to the autopsy report -- which should have been (which would have been, in any honest effort at inquiry) the bedrock starting point. The report has right along been sequestered by Scotland Yard in the interests of... you guessed it: national security. Go figure...

bevin , Dec 12 2019 1:46 utc | 53
It strikes me that the best explanation of the attack on the Skripals is not that he was responsible for the Steele Dossier in any way, but that he could easily prove that it was a fantasy. And was planning to do so.

He knew better, though, than to say so in the UK which suggests that he was on his way home with his daughter when MI6 caught up with him and poisoned them both.

Steele, Pablo Miller and Skripal were old partners in crime.

I'm wondering whether the mistake Sergei made was not to leave the house -- probably worth lotsa rubles -- behind and just go. On the other hand he was almost certainly under constant surveillance.

@50 The Official Report to which you refer was also very careful to enter extensive caveats regarding its conclusions for which there was almost no real evidence.

Cynica , Dec 12 2019 1:48 utc | 54

@Jackrabbit #12, @karlof1 #15

It seems important to note that Mr. Lavrov refers to administrations in his comments, not presidents per se. As there are many staff in presidential administrations, it seems entirely possible that 1) the requests from the Russians never reached Obama or Trump personally, and 2) either or both presidents were therefore not even aware of the requests. In the case of Trump, that would be consistent with the fact that many members of his administration have been revealed to have operated contrary to his wishes.

@Jen #42

The Skripals residing on US territory would definitely indicate that the US has been the senior partner in the "Skripal operation". This seems to be part of a general pattern.

@Jackrabbit #48

For the Steele dossier to be intentional bullshit (meaning its creator(s) knew it was false when they created it) doesn't seem all that surprising. Intelligence agencies promote disinformation all the time. That in no way means that Trump is in on the game.

pretzelattack , Dec 12 2019 2:04 utc | 55
by this point i don't know if either Skripal is still alive. Why keep them alive if they could debunk the oh so precious propaganda?
karlof1 , Dec 12 2019 3:20 utc | 58
Cynica @54--

Both Putin and Lavrov have stated that they talked directly with Obama and Trump about the issues involved with their relations, so there's no excuses or obfuscation possible is this case.

[Dec 09, 2019] Peter Hitchens visited the OPCW whistleblower and now discusses with Rico Brouwer in caf Weltschmerz what actually happened in Douma and what's at stake with this misleading OPCW report not only in Syria but also with our governments, the international rule of law and the validity of the OPCW.

Dec 09, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Mao , Dec 8 2019 19:00 utc | 21

OPCW investigated the April 7th 2018 incident in Douma Syria and reported that: "chlorine, or another reactive chlorine-containing chemical, was likely released".

An internal OPCW Email in response however said that the report: "is highly misleading and not supported by the facts".

London based author and journalist Peter Hitchens has closely followed the Syrian conflict and Douma incident. He's recently visited the OPCW whistleblower and now discusses with Rico Brouwer in café Weltschmerz what actually happened in Douma and what's at stake with this misleading OPCW report not only in Syria but also with our governments, the international rule of law and the validity of the OPCW.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AxeylNJT7ws


juliania , Dec 8 2019 21:46 utc | 41

mao@21 says 'London based author and journalist Peter Hitchins has closely followed the Syrian conflict...' and posts a video from a Dutch interrogator that had me interested until Mr. Hitchens blandly spouted a derogatory spiel about Assad that is the main source of all 'Assad must go' poppycockery from the west as if it were indeed fact. If he is going to base actual verifiable information upon such a shaky foundation, I would warn folk who proceed further to either accept this poster's message or that of Mr. Hitchins - beware of the underlying falsehoods when you do so.

This video is highly suspect, in my view. I do believe there is merit to the claim that the Douma incident was fabricated. I don't believe Mr. Hitchins is the one to elaborate on that claim.

bevin , Dec 8 2019 22:22 utc | 44
Juliana: count your blessings. Hitchens is a right wing columnist for the very right wing Daily Mail. Most of the time he simply pours out Tory propaganda but occasionally, like Peter Oborne and Jonathan Steele, his impatience with the crude propaganda of the warmongers leads to explosions in which truths are bared. This is one such occasion. And I'm grateful for it. None of the MSM writers is reliable-they would be unemployed if they were- but while the Heirloom media still exists let's praise them when they tell the truth and denounce them when they tell lies.
Hitchens, incidentally and in case you didn't know, is the younger brother of Christopher Hitchens and, like him, a former member of the International Socialist group which at the time and before calling itself the Socialist Workers Party ( a name which its founder Tony Cliff had long admired) described itself as Luxemburgist. The brothers were renegades-Christopher becoming a neo-con and Peter a Tory.
juliania , Dec 8 2019 22:48 utc | 46
Thank you, bevin, but to me the misinformation on Assad is more damaging even than the correction of the record on the Douma attack. I will be happy to be corrected on that. Given that the country of Syria is to be put back on its feet eventually, it seems the lies spread about it prior to now as far as the legitimacy of the presidency ought not to be countenanced. That's taking the long view, not being grateful for small favors that may be hiding a hidden agenda.

I will give Mr. Hitchins credit for prefacing his interview with garbage; perhaps that will draw some into reassessing the entirety of the propaganda they have been subject to. If this was not true, how about looking at the prior stuff? But I'm afraid the underlying message is - I'm telling the truth about this incident, so I must be also correct on the prior stuff. And that simply won't wash.

[Dec 09, 2019] More on the Skripal-Douma alleged false flag connection

Notable quotes:
"... In regard to our suggestion, the latest move against Damascus was predominantly a UK project, a link was sent to us today to an article by Thierry Meyssan on Voltairenet that's certainly interesting. ..."
"... It's not "the US", it's an international grouping of ideologues and other cranks, focused as much, maybe even more, in the UK as in America. If Meyssan is right these people are highly placed, but operating subversively within their own governments. Of course we have always known these thing are true to some extent, but this latest event seems to be taking this subversion to a new level. ..."
"... Seventeen years ago a small group of highly placed individuals in the US government may have engineered or at very least allowed 9/11 to happen for their own geopolitical ends. We'd be naive to consider a second such event to be impossible. ..."
"... The real danger isn't that a group of ubermenschen or Bond-villains want to incinerate humanity for vague and unspecified reasons, it's that the deep heart of the Russophobic cabal is too dogma-driven and infested with idiots to understand the real world results of their plans. ..."
"... „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, seem to confirm that the whole scene was staged. ..."
"... Another article by Mr Meyssan http://www.voltairenet.org/article200375.html refers to the British regime " is elaborated by an elite gathered around the monarch, outside of any form of popular control " The idea of a deep state seems too convenient. In every sphere the regime exploits the population for it's own requirements, if indeed the regime adheres to a nationality. Cold war, hot war are regime terms, all that matters is knowing who not to trust. ..."
"... There is a very powerful deep state in the UK. I think its leadership is hidden deep in the Privy Council and enforced by MI5/MI6. It runs a hidden economy financed through crime – fraud against UK taxpayers, foreign countries etc, It controls the judiciary when need be. This speech by Gerald James although old gives some idea; ..."
"... Catte, we do know for absolute certain that WTC-7 came down by controlled demolition, not by fire – it's a matter of science – and that fact means inside job, however much it was also an outside job. It's fine to be rigorous but if the facts are staring you right in the face that's rigour enough. I simply do not understand reluctance to call things out when they're in your face. It's not as if a court hearing is necessarily going to give you a better answer, is it, but hopefully there's going to be one soon where the truth will be revealed, at least as much as necessary. ..."
"... According to the 52-page petition, which is accompanied by 57 exhibits, federal statute requires the U.S. Department of Justice to relay citizen reports of federal crimes to a special grand jury. The unprosecuted crime alleged to have taken place on 9/11 is THE BOMBING OF A PLACE OF PUBLIC USE OR A GOVERNMENT FACILITY -- as prohibited under the federal bombing statute or 18 U.S.C. § 2332f -- as well as a conspiracy to commit, or the aiding and abetting of, said offense. ..."
Apr 15, 2018 | off-guardian.org

In regard to our suggestion, the latest move against Damascus was predominantly a UK project, a link was sent to us today to an article by Thierry Meyssan on Voltairenet that's certainly interesting.

Published March 20 it puts forward the idea the Skripal affair was a false flag intended to be the launch pad for a wholesale diplomatic attack on Russia that Meyssan suggests would initiate a "new cold war."

While it's possible to question this terminology (many would suggest we already have a "new cold war" and are on the verge of it becoming hot), his narrative offers a valid interpretation of recent events, and indeed looks more persuasive today that when it was written.

What Meyssan suggests is as follows:

Back in March a projected coup was planned between the UK government and the neocons in Washington to create an irresistible drive to a) launch a full blown assault on Damascus and b) get Russia removed from the UN Security Council.

The means was to be first the Skripal incident and immediately thereafter a large scale false flag chemical weapon attack on Ghouta.

Rex Tillerson, then US Secretary of State, was involved in this plan.

However by some means (Meyssan doesn't say how) the Syrian and Russian intelligence services became aware of the plan, and realised it was not the Pentagon behind it, but "some other agency."

The Russians immediately alerted the media to a possible false flag.

At the same time, bypassing diplomatic channels (because he was concerned to avoid others who were siding with the "plotters"), Russian Chief of Staff, General Valeri Gerasimov contacted his American counterpart General Joseph Dunford to inform him of his fears of a game-changing intel-sponsored event in Syria. Dunford in turn informed Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, who told Trump.

Since this apparent plot was going on without the knowledge of the White House & Pentagon, Trump then told Mike Pompeo, the head of the CIA, to investigate.

As a result Trump became convinced Tillerson was involved and soon after, fired him.

This, in essence, is Meyssan's story. He cites no source for the claims about back-channel communications, and we can't verify them even slightly. But we all know Russia did indeed warn of a pending false flag in Syria several times throughout March, and developments since the time of Meyssan's writing lend credence to the broad thrust of interpretation.

The orchestrated & hysterical response of the UK state machine to the Skripal event doesn't just hint at agenda rollout, it shouts it. The idea this was indeed the first act of a make or break plan is certainly more than believable. Indeed we all heard the suggestion about removing Russia from the UNSC repeated in the media at the height of the hysteria.

Whether Meyssan is right or wrong, we absolutely did just see an orchestrated, high level operation unfold, apparently designed to discredit Russia finally and forever.

It suggests new levels of idiot-insanity going on. Not only is such a plan amateurish in conception (kicking Russia off the UNSC, even if achievable, is not going to suddenly neutralise their political and military power), it would seem to have been doubly so in execution.

The Skripal story is a farce. But the apparent attempts to go forward with the "chemical attack" when all rationale for it was gone and when Douma itself was about to fall, shows stupidity beyond comprehension. If this was the UK, as the Russians claim, rather than rescuing themselves they simply added another embarrassing failure to the list, and dug themselves even deeper into easily-exposed crime.

The entire situation must be a warning, and not just the usual cliché about the US being a danger to world peace.

It's not "the US", it's an international grouping of ideologues and other cranks, focused as much, maybe even more, in the UK as in America. If Meyssan is right these people are highly placed, but operating subversively within their own governments. Of course we have always known these thing are true to some extent, but this latest event seems to be taking this subversion to a new level.

Seventeen years ago a small group of highly placed individuals in the US government may have engineered or at very least allowed 9/11 to happen for their own geopolitical ends. We'd be naive to consider a second such event to be impossible.

It also seems clear those enacting this plan initially had little idea how dangerous it really was, and were to some extent astounded by the Russian reaction, and the horror expressed by the more sane elements in international government. This is also significant.

It's a cliché in some alt media now to say the elites want WW3 and to talk about "population reduction" or some other meme. But, while it's certainly true there is a strong eugenicist de-population cult in the upper echelons, it's highly improbable any of them would choose a thermonuclear war as a viable method.

The real danger isn't that a group of ubermenschen or Bond-villains want to incinerate humanity for vague and unspecified reasons, it's that the deep heart of the Russophobic cabal is too dogma-driven and infested with idiots to understand the real world results of their plans.

We can be sure they won't have learned from this and won't be deterred from more of the same or worse in future. And if their next remedial scheme doesn't get stymied by circumstance or nifty footwork, no one will be more surprised than they are when it kicks of WW3.

But they do have some opposition within the state machine, and always have. There were people in the US and UK intelligence agencies who didn't want to lie about WMDs, and there are people today in the UK FCO who off-record told Craig Murray about the lies being forced on them regarding the Skripal case. These are people with enough smarts to want to avoid real confrontation with Russia, however prepared they are to play the public word games.

I think it's important we address this more nuanced reality rather than opting for the security of familiar memes.


vierotchka ,

Press Conference of Alexander Shulgin, Russian Representative to the OPCW
Streamed live on 16 Apr 2018
It comes with interpretation in English.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/QEb74ip_6RM?version=3&rel=1&fs=1&autohide=2&showsearch=0&showinfo=1&iv_load_policy=1&wmode=transparent

Cassandra ,

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 a strategical sense a (sort of) 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 bollocks 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 synthetic "rebels" at exorbitant prices) and brutally executed if they refused to live under Sharia-law or supported Assad. So there was absolutely no need to „punish" them for anything.

Coincidentally, high-ranking former British military officers totally disagree with the French "assessment"

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 kind of „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."

(Now that is a BIG Lie even the MSM has reported that the "rebels" DID use CW ( i.e. see Carla del Ponte, Seymour Hersh and Scott Ritter on this)
„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-manoeuvre of this magnitude" (!)

(this ridiculous claim does not even deserve a comment their "PR" has been highly effective since it was directed and organized by MI6 see voltairenet for more)

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:

As Sergei Lavrov recently said to the BBC "the proof is (apparently) in the punishment" .. it is crystal clear that neither the Briitsh nor the French gov't is interested in a thorough, forensic investigation (whether in Salisburgy or in Douma) and the fact they have acted as prosecutor, judge, jury and executioner BEFORE any impartial investigation took place is proof enough of their duplicity

What I find extremely puzzling is this: The Russians now say they have "irrefutable evidence" that Britain has instigated a false flag Douma (and obviously in Salisbury as well) . SO WHY don't they show it to us???? Why not publish the findings of the Swiss lab? Is this some weird diplomatic code of conduct they adhere to?

Cassandra ,

President MACRON recently stated that he has „proof" that CW were used in Douma and that it 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)

//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 heart-wrenchning, invented tale of the incubator-babies in Iraq in 1990)

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.

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:

https://www.basf.com/documents/corp/de/sustainability/employees/occupational-medicine/medical-guidelines/Chlor_D_BASF_medLeitlinien_D003.pdf ( German)

„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, seem to confirm that the whole scene was staged.

Mulga Mumblebrain ,

This is NOT a 'French' report. It is an Israeli Zionist pile of black propaganda, no doubt dictated by the CRIF, the de facto government of the slave state formerly known as 'France'.

rogerglewis ,

Doing a little more tunnelling into the Rabbit hole. A Bill Clinton reference to Karl Rove led to some interesting events surrounding the recently pardoned Scooter Libby.

@KarlRove https://bit.ly/2HFtLlh opposing Military Industrial Complex isn't equal2 Putin Apologism. War(s) Crimes of aggression started for false reasons With no proper Investigative & War reporting from corporate media how 2 hold http://bfy.tw/AKAh #warmongerstoaccount
5:26 PM – 17 Apr 2018

rogerglewis ,

https://theduran.com/british-intelligence-services-are-the-masters-of-propaganda-and-false-flags/
Great Article on the Duran.

Old Pepper,

The criminal group led by the red clown and the old Mare with the skewed muzzle continues the provocations. On Monday, the British representative in the OPCW accused the Russians of non-admission of OPCW experts in Duma. At the same time, the OPCW experts while in Damascus were expecting a solution of the Security Department of the UN, because controlled by the Britons the bandits were instructed to fire at the place where the white helmets organized the performance with a "chemical attack". At the same time, the United States began to yell that Russian do not allow the OPCW experts to the Duma, seeking to eliminate traces of the "chemical attack". This gang HIGHLY LIKELY thinks we're all idiots.

The world is already clear that no poisoning of the Tablets was not, as there was no chemical attack by Assad. Clown and Mare managed to negotiate with the Russians and they did not respond to the shelling of Syria. Seeing that the Russian did not respond, the bandits completely insolen. And now they can arrange another chemical provocation and hit in Syria already on the Russians. And is not the fact that the Russian will not answer. This is war. I do not want because of a bunch of idiots, teasing the Russian bear, to a slaughter in which no one will survive.

rogerglewis ,

Watching the Commons Statement Yesterday from Theresa May and reflecting overnight I revisited some interactive Dada.

We are watching Karl Rove's actors in history. What is in the grey space and what do we have between our Ears?

Kaiama,

https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/syria-chemical-attack-gas-douma-robert-fisk-ghouta-damascus-a8307726.html
A little ray of sunshine ATL.

Goldmember,

The funniest part of Meyssan's story is that Trump asked DCI Pompeo to investigate the false flag. What a nube.

Think it through. They didn't say cabal, they said agency. DoS is not an agency, it's a department. 'Ideologues and cranks?' 'Highly placed, but operating subversively within their own governments?' You are describing CIA.

https://ratical.org/ratville/JFK/ST/

That small group of highly placed individuals who did 911? That was CIA and their moles in key departments: Brennan, Blee, Cofer Black, Wilshire, Bikowsky, Bowman. The deep heart of the Russophobic cabal is not some secret society, it's a longstanding CIA program. These programs look international because CIA uses eyes-only intelligence liaisons to conceal the dirty work they delegate to other countries' agents.

The opposition within CIA is also institutionally chartered. CIA has a routine: dewy-eyed boy scout analysts secretly decry the insanity of the operations people. Then when the shit hits the fan, CIA publishes the analysis and uses it to blame somebody else. That's how they blamed Vietnam on the Pentagon, with their tongue-in-cheek Pentagon Papers. And that's how they blamed Tillerson for their very own CIA plan and conspiracy for war.

milosevic,

This is a very promising thesis. I hope you can expand on it. Another angle might be Nixon/Watergate/WaPo. Or Reagan/IranContra/North. Of course, JFK/Vietnam/Oswald goes without saying.

physicsandmathsrevision ,

Here's a lecture given to FSB (KGB) students by a Russian professor. He says the world is governed by a "Conceptual Power" that exists above elected governments and that this template has been in place since 1350 B.C.. Very interesting at the very least:

https://www.youtube.com/embed/uAQXfC3S9lM?version=3&rel=1&fs=1&autohide=2&showsearch=0&showinfo=1&iv_load_policy=1&wmode=transparent

Alan,

Another article by Mr Meyssan http://www.voltairenet.org/article200375.html refers to the British regime " is elaborated by an elite gathered around the monarch, outside of any form of popular control " The idea of a deep state seems too convenient. In every sphere the regime exploits the population for it's own requirements, if indeed the regime adheres to a nationality. Cold war, hot war are regime terms, all that matters is knowing who not to trust.

vexarb,

Re BZ (British Zyklon?) the following lengthy clip from Saker's "Curious Incident" discussion reflects OffG's raison d'etre: that Facts Really ought to be Sacred. The MSM have abandoned this principle, as have the Leaders of F, UK and US regimes among others in the Western world. This is a huge reversal of human progress, and extremely dangerous for the world because the West now has runaway Technology without Ethics. BTL Saker:

vot tak on April 16, 2018 · at 1:09 am UTC 14.04.2018

Embassy Press Officer comments on the findings of the Swiss experts regarding the Salisbury incident

https://www.rusemb.org.uk/fnapr/6486

"Q. Is there any new information regarding the findings of experts from Switzerland in connection with the Salisbury poisoning?

A. According to information from the Swiss Federal Institute for NBC-protection in Spiez, its experts received samples collected in Salisbury by the OPCW specialists and finished testing them on 27 March.

The experts of the Institute discovered traces of toxic chemical called "BZ" and its precursors. It is a Schedule 2 substance under the Chemical Weapons Convention.

"BZ" is a chemical agent, which is used to temporary incapacitate people. The desired psychotoxic effect is reached in 30-60 minutes after application of the agent and lasts up to four days. According to the information the Russian Federation possesses, this agent was used in the armed forces of the USA, United Kingdom and several others NATO member states. No stocks of such substance ever existed either in the Soviet Union or in the Russian Federation.
In addition, the Swiss specialists discovered strong concentration of traces of the nerve agent of A-234 type in its initial states as well as its decomposition products.

In view of the experts, such concentration of the A-234 agent would result in inevitable fatal outcome of its administration. Moreover, considering its high volatility, the detection of this substance in its initial state (pure form and high concentration) is extremely suspicious as the samples have been taken several weeks since the poisoning.

It looks highly likely that the "BZ" nerve agent was used in Salisbury. The fact that Yulia Skripal and Detective Sergeant Nick Bailey have already been discharged from hospital, and Sergei Skripal is on his way to recovery, only supports such conclusion.

All this information was not mentioned in the final OPCW report at all. Considering the above, we have numerous serious questions to all interested parties, including the OPCW."

Sushi       on April 16, 2018  ·  at 3:04 am UTC

That statement on the part of RF embassy is good to see as it confirms my own supposition as recorded in Part X.

It is always nice to go out on a limb and then discover the rest of the world supports the finding rather than sawing off the limb 🙂

But I believe the big take-away from this event is the fact that the state is no longer held in check by the MSM. This means that the ordinary citizen is paying for an entity which is actively acting to subvert the interests of the citizenry. This is very dangerous.

These [truther] articles each get about 10,000 page views. This is a drop in the bucket in comparison to the total voting population of the UK, or France, or FRG or US or CA. If you believe this information is valuable then you should share it. You do not have to agree with all that I have written. It is quite possible I have made errors, drawn incorrect conclusions from the evidence etc, etc.

The key issue is that the MSM is not engaged in a review of an incident which, on any degree of review fails on the merits and is quickly exposed as false, deceptive and grounds for vilification of another state which I believe to be innocent of the allegations made against it. If I could find evidence of RF involvement I would gladly write that. But I cannot locate any such evidence. This event is likely to be used to further justify illegal use of force in Syria. If the public comes to the belief that "Bad Vlad" is pulling all the strings then they will accept the march toward global war. The problem is that the person really pulling all the strings is located at Number 10. If bad things happen they have a taxpayer financed bunker to retreat to. The ordinary citizen is not even assured of a working NHS. _So if you find this series of value then address it with your family and other contacts._ Cheers!

WJ,

https://mobile.twitter.com/caitoz/status/985683664032874496
Link to story cited in prior comment

WJ,

US now explicitly commits itself to stay in Syria for purpose of ..Iran. https://medium.com/@caityjohnstone/nikki-haley-seems-to-be-saying-us-will-remain-in-syria-as-long-as-iran-exists

thorella,

There is a very powerful deep state in the UK. I think its leadership is hidden deep in the Privy Council and enforced by MI5/MI6. It runs a hidden economy financed through crime – fraud against UK taxpayers, foreign countries etc, It controls the judiciary when need be. This speech by Gerald James although old gives some idea;

http://zersetzen.wikispaces.com/file/view/Gerald+Reaveley+James.pdf

The next link shows the involvement in crime:

https://goggzilla.wordpress.com/2017/01/10/not-only-was-the-mets-investigation-into-the-costello-affidavit-a-sham-but-so-was-the-authorities-entire-conduct-of-barry-beardalls-appeal/

intergenerationaltrauma ,

Excellent post Catte. Thanks. There is certainly serious dissension within the ranks of the U.S. establishment or we would not be seeing the various fits and stops and starts that have characterized both Trump's appointments, and his subsequent removal of various appointed advisors, as well as his erratic foreign policy actions since he entered office. Trump himself was never "the problem" for the collective U.S. deep state, it was Trump's stated goal of "getting along with Russia" that has prompted close to open warfare between factions of the U.S. ruling class and institutional structures. What is amazing to behold is watching almost the entirety of the leadership of the most powerful Western nations on earth morph before our eyes into a group of slapstick carnival clowns selling snake oil and war as if they were some sort of magic elixir sure to prolong their much cherished Western hegemony. Recent events have pulled the mask off of the facade of "Western democracy" to reveal the grinning death mask of a dying elite power structure, delusional, paranoid and grandiose to the bitter end.

flaxgirl ,

Fascinating article but

Seventeen years ago a small group of highly placed individuals in the US government may have engineered or at very least allowed 9/11 to happen for their own geopolitical ends

???
May have? Allowed?
How many articles has OffG published on 9/11 that show unequivocally that it was an inside job? Seventeen years later with the vision of hindsight for those of us who did swallow the lies we can see how utterly silly we were. We can see so clearly how steel frame skyscrapers do not collapse symmetrically due to fires, how a band of men armed with boxcutters cannot negotiate the most restricted airspace in the world without an effective stand down – provided so very conveniently by 21 drills occurring on the morning of 9/11, some of which exactly matched the alleged real life events.
No further investigation needs to be conducted to know that 9/11 was an inside job – only to sort out the guilty and exactly what happened. In fact, all you need to know that 9/11 was an inside job is the undisputed 2.25 seconds of free fall acceleration in the collapse of WTC-7. That tiny piece of information is all you need. For free fall, the 82 steel support columns must have given way at virtually the same time and for that to have happened only controlled demolition could have been the cause and controlled demolition can only mean inside job.

Catte,

We've successfully proved the official story is a lie, but we haven't uncovered what actually happened beyond there being foreknowledge and pre-planning of some kind. Who did the planning, how many people knew how much how long before it happened, we do NOT know.
Do we?
Let's be as rigorous about the sceptical argument as we are about the official story.

flaxgirl ,

Catte, we do know for absolute certain that WTC-7 came down by controlled demolition, not by fire – it's a matter of science – and that fact means inside job, however much it was also an outside job. It's fine to be rigorous but if the facts are staring you right in the face that's rigour enough. I simply do not understand reluctance to call things out when they're in your face. It's not as if a court hearing is necessarily going to give you a better answer, is it, but hopefully there's going to be one soon where the truth will be revealed, at least as much as necessary.

10 April – Lawyers and Victims' Families File Petition for Federal Grand Jury Investigation

According to the 52-page petition, which is accompanied by 57 exhibits, federal statute requires the U.S. Department of Justice to relay citizen reports of federal crimes to a special grand jury. The unprosecuted crime alleged to have taken place on 9/11 is THE BOMBING OF A PLACE OF PUBLIC USE OR A GOVERNMENT FACILITY -- as prohibited under the federal bombing statute or 18 U.S.C. § 2332f -- as well as a conspiracy to commit, or the aiding and abetting of, said offense.

https://www.ae911truth.org/news/447-lawyers-and-victims-families-file-petition-for-federal-grand-jury-investigation

Ross Hendry ,

I think Catte was saying we don't know the people who were involved, etc. but she accepts that the official story is a lie.

flaxgirl ,

We don't know who exactly but we know for absolute certain that rogue elements within government were involved. We definitely know it was an inside job, whatever outside involvement there was.

Mulga Mumblebrain ,

How do you explain the 'five dancing Israelis' filming the attack as it happened, from Liberty Park in New Jersey?

Google Talpiot Program ,

3 of the 5 appeared on an Israeli TV show afterwards where they said they were there to "document the event".
http://abcnews.go.com/2020/story?id=123885&page=1

Google Talpiot Program ,

"Not excluding it, jut saying it's not an inevitable conclusion they were involved at all, and certainly no indication there were at the center of anything."
No one is saying they are at the centre of anything. That they were in a position to film, were reportedly celebrating, their story changed multiple times in interviews with law and enforcement and that they were possibly Israeli intelligence all adds up to making it an interesting detail.
Especially when all the other evidence of 9/11 is investigated and puts the dancing Israelis in context.

Mulga Mumblebrain ,

LUDICROUS! They knew of the attack, before it happened. Others filming the atrocity were NOT wildly celebrating the deaths of thousands. They were attempting to pose as 'Arabs' to defame them. One told one of the arresting police that 'Your enemy are the Palestinians'. The police found traces of explosives in their van. One or more failed lie-detector tests before they were simply released and allowed to go home to Israel, where they appeared on TV, one admitting to being MOSSAD.

Admin ,

Steady on. The source quoted above doesn't say anything about wild celebration, it just says the five men were looking happy and smiling. That's a bit weird of itself but don't exaggerate it into something else. Thats just replacing memes with other memes. Maybe they were involved, but there are many other possibilities, including them simply watching the event with no direct connection at all.

What significance do you see in the traces of explosives? Are you suggesting these guys are the ones who wired the WTCs for demolition, and that they had brought the RDX/thermite there in that van, which they didn't ditch but continued to drive around in?

Five guys with no known specialist knowledge, wiring three massive towers for demolition from one small van? You don't think it was likely a bigger more professional outfit that would do that? One – say – with permits to enter and renovate the towers/enter the lift shafts?

Mulga Mumblebrain ,

Your diversionary tactics are interesting. They were described as 'dancing, jumping and giving each other 'high-fives'. Obviously they were overcome with grief. The presence of explosive traces plainly has nothing to do so with the controlled demolition. It just seems odd, and suspicious. No-one at any time suggested that these five did the placing of the controlled demolition charges. Of course it was others, probably Israeli Death Force sappers. And they were NOT 'just watching'-they were filming it, and from the first aircraft strike. Pretty prescient of them.

Mulga Mumblebrain ,

9/11 irrefutably, I would say, was a MOSSAD operation, with US sayanim, and Sabbat Goy involvement, the US side centered on that Zionist Israel First cabal, the 'neo-conservatives'. Christopher Bollyn does an excellent job of outlining the Zionist ' Clash of Civilizations' and 'War on (Islam) Terror' projects, the latter, in particular, an endeavour of Netanyahu's for decades. Everything that flowed from that event, the genocides in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and the destruction inflicted on those unlucky lands, the crucifixion of Syria, the regular, ritual, massacres in Gaza, are all creations of the Zionist elite, and follow closely the strategy outlined in the Oded Yinon Plan of 1982, which was reiterated by Netanyahu in the 'A Clean Break' manifesto.

Zionist control easily explains May's involvement, as she is a groveling toady of the Netanyahu regime and the Holy State that sits above mere 'International Law'. Apparently, when Netanyahu visited Putin in Sochi a year or so ago, and made certain demands on Russia in regard to Syria, and Putin rebuffed him, so great was Netanyahu's distress at this insubordination by a mere goy that he lost self-control and went a little hysterical. Hence the renewed determination to keep the vivisection of Syria going, and prepare for Holy War on Lebanon and Iran. Of course Bibi's path is that of the Masada Complex, he being a wannabe zealot 'hero', and he seems oblivious to the reality that unending Israeli aggression will only bring about Israel's destruction, in the manner that it has inflicted ruination on its neighbours for 70 years.

bevin,

"..Let's be as rigorous about the sceptical argument as we are about the official story."

Absolutely agree.

It is quite reasonable for someone to be convinced that, to use a popular argument on this thread, Corbyn is an MI 6 agent but if there is no evidence of this cited not only is it impossible to insist on the 'irrefutable' nature of the assertion but to do so is to discredit oneself, the discussion in question and, fairly quickly, the blog in its entirety.

It is one of life's little ironies that off guardian, which insists that we weigh evidence rigorously where claims by the state are concerned, is becoming something of a refuge for assertions based on evidence just as sketchy and circumstantial as those put forward by the likes of Freedland and the BBC.

So 9/11 might have been a Mossad operation, just as Putin might have ordered the attack in Salisbury and the White helmets could be well meaning humanitarians discovering gas attacks.

Let us see the evidence before we agree that something is irrefutable, even when it is something as clear cut as the fact that Corbyn (already revealed to be a Czech spy, having once had tea with one) has had tea with an MI 6 agent and is therefore, connecting the dots, completely unreliable and no more to be supported than, say, Boris Johnson. The proof being that he did not oppose, we are told the Magnitsky Act, sponsored by his fellow agent (and PLP member) Ian Austin.

At any rate the Israeli Embassy can now call off their campaign against Corbyn who is revealed to be almost as big a friend of Israel as Blair- who even Roman Polanski knew was a CI Agent.

Admin,

It is one of life's little ironies that off guardian, which insists that we weigh evidence rigorously where claims by the state are concerned, is becoming something of a refuge for assertions based on evidence just as sketchy and circumstantial as those put forward by the likes of Freedland and the BBC.

Excuse me? Since when have we been guilty of that?

In Hasbara College-but he flunked out.

flaxgirl ,

There is nothing elaborate whatsoever in claiming WTC-7 came down by classic, controlled demolition, aka, an implosion. It's irrelevant how substandard its material, how much fire was in it, or how much damage it suffered. The manner of its collapse tells all. Pre- and during- explosions, kink in middle at start, beautiful symmetry, near and partial free fall, complete dismemberment of steel frame and molten metal are all unique characteristics of controlled demolition while there is not even a lick of flame to be seen in videos of the collapse. WTC-7's collapse by "fire" is the greatest case of the Emperor's New Clothes the world has ever seen.

I've done an Occam's Razor exercise on the collapse of WTC-7 and offered $5,000 to those who support the official story to produce an equivalent exercise favouring the "fire" hypothesis. No one has been able to respond.
http://occamsrazorterrorevents.weebly.com/911.html

BigB ,

Bevin: if this comment is aimed in part at me, you are deliberately misrepresenting my assertions. No one on this thread, makes the accusation that Jeremy is an MI6 agent except you. As you say, there is no evidence for this and personally, I do not believe he is. What I have empirically and objectively shown (previously with links) is that he can be co-opted by the Cabinet Office and JIC to conduit faulty intelligence fed to him. That does NOT make him part of the intelligence apparatus, only ancillary to it. To this end, it was interesting to note his actions this weekend: commenting on Syria. For this he sought, but did not get an intelligence briefing as a Privy Councillor. This was quite clear on the Marr show: he talked about "other parties" that may have perpetrated the Douma provocation but he said "I don't know, I don't know" quite a few times. Corbyn "unbriefed" wants an OPCW investigation and a UN mandate to act: which is perfectly reasonable and legal. And probably clears up any false assertion that he is in the full-time employ of MI6?

Re: the Magnitsky ammendment. Not only did Corbyn "not oppose" this: he actively promoted it at every opportunity. As I have tried to make clear we already have "Unexplained Wealth Orders" which are analoguous to Magnitsky sanctions. We do not need another Magnitsky ammendment. This was the government position before 6th March. I do not claim that Jeremy is pushing this Act because he IS an MI6 agent: but I can quite clearly show he is pushing it FOR an MI6 agent. Thank if you do not conflate and impute meaning for me.

And no, I have not produced "evidence" that Browder is an agent for SIS: but if he is not, he might as well be? Or perhaps you think him an innocent human rights activist as he styles himself. What is irrefutable, empirical, and objective is that this one man is the source of much of the character assassination of Putin (from his "Enemy No1") and Jeremy is pushing his agenda. Why: I do not know – naivety? Beyond that, I leave the speculation to you.

If Ian Austin is an agent, he would be a Mossad agent but I make no such claim.

As for the Israeli Embassy: I have covered that elsewhere in depth. No, they will not call off their campaign. Yes, they already have a hold, and they are not far off gaining a veto control of the Labour disciplinary process: whereby anyone can be suspended on false accusations of anti-semitism: a position Jeremy has backed himself into by his strategy of appeasement.

All in all: I would say my assertions are grounded in empiricism, and I have not claimed anything I cannot back up. So facts are sacred: even if that means you do not like them?

Mulga Mumblebrain ,

I suggest immersing yourself in Christopher Bollyn's excellent videos regarding Israeli planning for just such an operation, to be undertaken to provide the 'New Pearl Harbor' that the fanatic Zionist 'neo-conservatives' declared presciently would be needed to get the USA to do Israel's dirty work in destroying the Moslem countries of the MENA. The evidence of Israeli and US sayanim involvement is huge, most circumstantial, but other parts, like the 'five dancing Israelis' seen filming the atrocity in real time, are rather more convincing.

BigB ,

I read one of Bollyn's books, can't remember the title. I take on a lot of his points: but I personally frame such events as transnational, or better still: supra-national. To say it was this or that country alone is not how I view it: the perpetraitors were ultimately working for a "higher cause"! Caitlin Johnstone just did a piece about this: the ultimate beneficiaries form a globalised superclass that is totally amoral and has no allegiance to any particular cause or country. Zinoviev termed this the Westernised "supra-society". Certainly not every individual: but at the corrupted core – all Western Intelligence agencies serve a cause that transcends the national interest. National security is a line they feed us: the UK as a whole benefits little from our involvement in Syria, and less still, from being embroiled in a Cold War with Russia on the grounds of national defence. It's all a con!

Mulga Mumblebrain ,

The Zionist elite support other states and their elites only in so far as they serve Israel's interests, or rather the interests of the Israeli and Diaspora elites. These interests are not those of much of Jewry, or, of course, of any goyim but the collaborative type like May, Micron, Cheney et al. The Zionist elite most certainly do possess global ambitions rooted in Talmudic doctrine.

Mulga Mumblebrain ,

Please don't misrepresent me. I have stated over and over again that the culprits are the Zionist elites in Israel and the Diaspora, NOT Jews as a whole. Many Jews oppose the nefarious activities of the Zionist elites, and many others are passive, just like all other communities. But in the matter of 9/11 proposing that the Zionists not be mentioned is quite bizarre. In my comments immediately above (the last seven or eight) there are eight 'Zionists' and one 'Jewry' and that was in the context of asserting that not all Jews support Zionist crimes or benefit from them.

Ross Hendry ,

Bollyn is very reliable on 9/11, in my view.

mog ,

@bevin

I am sad to see you write that. I have not seen anyone here claiming Corbyn to be an MI6 agent, and it reads as inflationary misrepresentation to say that people have.

The Labour bureaucracy is simply overpowered/ outmaneuvered by a very well organised, well connected and well resourced psywar operation, – one that has at least some links to Israel and zionist sympathies.

Too many on the Corbyn Left cannot engage with this for fear of being branded racist.

Do you refute the accusation of Corbyn's appeasement?

Evidence for Mossad involvement in 9/11 ?

There is a heap of evidence, arguably no conclusive evidence, but not far off:

'First, Bergen, NJ residents saw five people on a white van filming the attacks and visibly celebrating. They had set up their cameras before the first plane hit. Police arrested them. All were Israelis (now referred to as the "dancing Israelis"). Bomb-sniffing dogs reacted as if they had detected explosives, although officers were unable to find anything. The FBI seized the van for further testing. All five were later released at the instigation of Israeli & American Jewish leaders, some in the US Government. Details are still classified. This incident quickly disappeared from the mainstream media, following a brief mention in the New York Times three days after the attacks, that was not followed up.

A second van was stopped on the approaches to the George Washington Bridge. As CBS's Dan Rather said in his live report: "Two suspects are in FBI custody after a truckload of explosives were discovered around the George Washington Bridge. That bridge links New York to New Jersey over the Hudson River. Whether the discovery of those explosives had anything to do with other events today is unclear, but the FBI, has two suspects in hand, said the truckload of explosives, enough explosives were in the truck to do great damage to the George Washington Bridge " Those suspects –also Israelis -- and the incident then seem to have disappeared from the public record and mainstream media "examinations" <sic.> of 9/11, just like discussions of the first van, the secondary explosions at ground level within WTC-1 and WTC-2, and the precipitous collapse into its own footprint of WTC-7.'

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article28438.htm

I think that Kevin Ryan has done some of the best work in trying to identify legitimate suspects for 9/11, and proposes a 'private intelligence network' which spans several countries (e.g. Saudi Arabia, UAE ).

I think there is a strong case made by Sabrosky and others that 'The Big Wedding' ' wedded Neocon philosophy with 500 years of Atlanticism'.

I keep banging the drum that seeks to sound out the need for the Left to come to terms with this history. I contend that they will not 'get anywhere' in the 21st century unless or until they do.

mog ,

@Admin

Does this network include the US/UK or any NATO countries? Yes.

rogermorris ,

absolutely agreed. the more nuanced reality is where Karl ROVE delivered us..("We are empire now we create new realities..") which is why the adults in Moscow have so far deflected these egregious false flags generated by the MI6 Britprop WhiteHelmets®.con atrocity troupe.

Because they KNOW whats going on.

Thierry Meysson wrote one of the very first books on false flag 911, the event beginning WW3 (911. The big LIE) He is a voice highly regarded. The ugly intentions of the anglozionist hegamon, loudly expressed as they slapped the Patriot Act into homeland 'Law' – to smash the middle East by all and any means (Strategy of Tension [NATO:GLADIO] YINON and 'Full Spectrum Dominance' methods/R2P, P2OG, IIO) ushered in on the LIE of 911 casus belli; was not lost on Russian and Chinese intelligence ; nor on anyone listening.

[Dec 09, 2019] WADA are threatening to exclude Russia from all sorts of events. I get the impression that Russia may be trailing its coat here, at a time when the OPCW news comes out in drips and drabs

Dec 09, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Montreal , Dec 8 2019 18:32 utc | 17

There has been quite a lot recently in RT about the sports doping scandal and how WADA are threatening to exclude Russia from all sorts of events. I get the impression that Russia may be trailing its coat here, at a time when the OPCW news comes out in drips and drabs. So maybe some bargaining is going on behind the scenes.

On quite another tack I came across this lovely conversation - translated from a contemporary record on papyrus - between the Roman Emperor Commodus and the head of the Alexandria Gymnasium (main school.) I think this is 2nd century AD.

Emperor: Do you know who you are talking to?
Head: Yes I know, I am speaking to a tyrant.
Emperor: No, to a monarch
Head: Do not say that. Your divine father Marcus Aurelius had the proper qualities of an emperor. Listen! - First, he was a philosopher; second, he did not love money; third, he loved the good. In you there are the reverse of these qualities: tyranny, hatred of the good, common ignorance.

(He was then led off to be executed). (From City of the Sharp-Nosed Fish, by Peter Parsons)

Makes you think about our current rulers. In the UK, Clement Attlee seems to comes closest to the ideal.

David K , Dec 8 2019 21:21 utc | 39

@ Montreal | Dec 8 2019 18:32 | 17
"sports doping scandal and how WADA are threatening to exclude Russia"

There is some suggestion that the LIMS database had been hacked, with
the hacks / changes being ascribed to Russia, but in fact originating
from parties intent on discrediting Russia..

STUXNET was a sophisticated Government (Israeli / US ) effort to
attack Iran's centrifuge program. Stuxnet's design and architecture
are not domain-specific and can be adapted to other industrial targets.

Such as a LIMS system - often a unprotected visual interface to an SQL database

It is unlikely that the very capable team that gave us Stuxnet has been sitting around
bored and idle, with such a juicy target available

[Dec 09, 2019] The UK ministry of Defence has searched its files and records of the blood sampling and testing for Novichok in the blood of Sergei and Yulia Skripal, but "failed to locate any information that provides the exact time that the samples were collected."

So those devious Brits injected Novichok directly into blood samples. nice...
Dec 09, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org
Juan Moment , Dec 8 2019 15:11 utc | 4
John Helmer @ Dances with Bears:
A British Ministry of Defence document, issued on March 12 but unnoticed since then, reports the ministry has searched its files and records of the blood sampling and testing for Novichok in the blood of Sergei and Yulia Skripal, but "failed to locate any information that provides the exact time that the samples were collected."

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) is the parent organization for the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL), the UK's chemical warfare centre at Porton Down. Porton Down, as the laboratory is usually known, is the source of British evidence that Novichok was detected in the bloodstreams of the two Skripals. [...]

If Gardiner's report of March 12 is true, then this is MOD's official admission there is no chain of custody for the blood samples on which the Novichok allegation has been based. If Gardiner is lying, then the ministry's reason is obvious: the samples which were taken from the Skripals in Salisbury Hospital did not reveal that their blood was contaminated by what Porton Down and Prime Minister May later claimed was Novichok. [...]

http://johnhelmer.org/british-defence-ministry-document-reveals-skripal-blood-evidence-is-missing-fake-chain-of-custody-makes-novichok-evidence-worthless/

[Dec 09, 2019] Newsweek Reporter Resigns After Accusing Outlet Of Suppressing OPCW Leak Story by Caitlin Johnstone

Notable quotes:
"... Haddad added that he is now seeking legal advice and looking into the possibility of whistleblower protections for himself, and said at the very least he will publish the information he has while omitting anything that could subject him to legal retaliation from his former employer. ..."
"... Newsweek has long been a reliable guard dog and attack dog for the US-centralized empire, with examples of stories that its editors did permit to go to print including an article by an actual, current military intelligence officer explaining why US prosecution of Julian Assange is a good thing, fawning puff pieces on the White Helmets , and despicable smear jobs on Tulsi Gabbard . ..."
"... Newsweek also recently published an article attacking Tucker Carlson for publicizing the OPCW scandal, basing its criticisms on a bogus Bellingcat article I debunked shortly after its publication . ..."
Dec 08, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Caitlin Johnstone via Medium.com,

A Newsweek journalist has resigned after the publication reportedly suppressed his story about the ever-growing OPCW scandal, the revelation of immensely significant plot holes in the establishment Syria narrative that you can update yourself on by watching this short seven-minute video or this more detailed video here .

"Yesterday I resigned from Newsweek after my attempts to publish newsworthy revelations about the leaked OPCW letter were refused for no valid reason," journalist Tareq Haddad reported today via Twitter .

"I have collected evidence of how they suppressed the story in addition to evidence from another case where info inconvenient to US government was removed, though it was factually correct," Haddad said.

"I plan on publishing these details in full shortly. However, after asking my editors for comment, as is journalistic practice, I received an email reminding me of confidentiality clauses in my contract. I.e. I was threatened with legal action."

Haddad added that he is now seeking legal advice and looking into the possibility of whistleblower protections for himself, and said at the very least he will publish the information he has while omitting anything that could subject him to legal retaliation from his former employer.

"I could have kept silent and kept my job, but I would not have been able to continue with a clean conscience," Haddad said .

"I will have some instability now but the truth is more important."

This is the first direct insider report we're getting on the mass media's conspiracy of silence on the OPCW scandal that I wrote about just the other day . In how many other newsrooms is this exact same sort of suppression happening, including threats of legal action, to journalists who don't have the courage or ability to leave and speak out? There is no logical reason to assume that Haddad is the only one encountering such roadblocks from mass media editors; he's just the only one going public about it.

Newsweek has long been a reliable guard dog and attack dog for the US-centralized empire, with examples of stories that its editors did permit to go to print including an article by an actual, current military intelligence officer explaining why US prosecution of Julian Assange is a good thing, fawning puff pieces on the White Helmets , and despicable smear jobs on Tulsi Gabbard .

The outlet will occasionally print oppositional-looking articles like this one by Ian Wilkie questioning the establishment Syria narrative , but not without immediately turning around and publishing an attack on Wilkie's piece by Eliot Higgins, a former Atlantic Council Senior Fellow who is the cofounder of the NED-funded imperial narrative management firm Bellingcat.

Newsweek also recently published an article attacking Tucker Carlson for publicizing the OPCW scandal, basing its criticisms on a bogus Bellingcat article I debunked shortly after its publication .

The ubiquitous propagandistic tactic of fake news by omission distorts the public's worldview just as much as it would if mass media outlets were publishing bogus stories whole cloth every day, only if they were doing that it would be much easier to pin them down on their lies, hold them accountable, and discredit them.

A recent FAIR article by Alan MacLeod documents how the Hong Kong demonstrations are pushed front and center in mainstream consciousness despite the fact that to this day not one protester has been killed by security forces, while far more deadly violence is being directed at huge protests in empire-aligned nations like Haiti, Chile and Ecuador which have been almost completely ignored by these same outlets.

This deliberate omission causes a distorted worldview in casual and mainstream news media consumers in which protests are only happening in nations that are outside the US-centralized power alliance . We see the same kind of deliberate distortion-by-omission with the way mass media continually pushes the narrative that Donald Trump is "soft on Russia", while remaining completely silent on the overwhelming mountain of evidence to the contrary .

The time is now for everyone with a platform to start banging the drum about the OPCW scandal, because we're seeing more and more signs that the deluge of leaks hemorrhaging from that organisation is only going to increase. Mainstream propagandists aren't going to cover it, so if larger alternative media outlets want to avoid being lumped in with them and discredited in the same sweep it would be wise to start talking about this thing today. It's only going to get more and more awkward for everyone who chose to remain silent, and more and more validating for those who spoke out.

* * *

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[Dec 06, 2019] OPCW. Corrupted over Douma, how about Skripal?

Dec 06, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Helmer tweets: " British Ministry of Defence document reveals it is missing chain of custody over Skripal blood samples which the ministry's DSTL laboratory at Porton Down claims to prove a Russian Novichok attack. Publishing shortly ." Somebody could have added " type A-234 nerve agent in its virgin state" or BZ to the sample? Nah, who'd do that?

[Dec 03, 2019] Exciting new product intro from Max Blumenthal: Maddow's Tears™, a new formula that produces soothing, cooling moisture in politically convenient circumstances

Jul 09, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Daniel , Jul 8, 2018 3:35:44 PM | 57

Exciting new product intro from Max Blumenthal: Maddow's Tears™, a new formula that produces soothing, cooling moisture in politically convenient circumstances.
Daniel , Jul 8, 2018 4:25:49 PM | 58
Interesting case of honesty from The Guardian:

"I am at a loss to see what motive the Kremlin might have to commit murders on foreign soil during the buildup, let alone the enactment, of a sporting event that is of mammoth chauvinist significance to Russia."

"The most obvious motive for these attacks would surely be from someone out to embarrass the Russian president, Vladimir Putin – someone from his enemies, rather than from his friends or employees. But once again we have no clue."

[Dec 03, 2019] As The OPCW Is Accused Of False Reporting U.S. Propaganda Jumps To Its Help

Dec 03, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

As The OPCW Is Accused Of False Reporting U.S. Propaganda Jumps To Its Help

An international organization published two false reports and got caught in the act. But as the false reports are in the U.S. interests a U.S. sponsored propaganda organization is send out to muddle the issue. As that effort comes under fire the New York Times jumps in to give the cover-up effort some extra help.

The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) manufactured a pretext for war by suppressing its own scientists' research :

OPCW emails and documents were leaked and whistleblowers came forward to speak with journalists and international lawyers . Veteran journalist Jonathan Steele, who has spoken with the whistleblowers, wrote an excellent piece on the issues. In the Mail on Sunday columnist Peter Hitchens picked up the issue and moved it forward.

Under U.S. pressure the OPCW management modified or suppressed the findings of its own scientists to make it look as if the Syrian government had been responsible for the alleged chemical incident in April 2018 in Douma.

The public attention to the OPCW's fakery lead to the questioning of other assertions the OPCW had previously made. With the OPCW under fire someone had come to its help.

To save the propaganda value of the OPCW reports the U.S. financed Bellingcat propaganda organization jumped in to save the OPCW's bacon . Bellingcat founder " suck my balls " Elliot Higgins claimed that the OPCW reports satisfied the concerns the OPCW scientist had voiced.

That assertion is now further propagated by a New York Times piece which, under the pretense of reporting about open source analysis, boosts Bellingcat and its defense of the OPCW :

The blogger Eliot Higgins made waves early in the decade by covering the war in Syria from a laptop in his apartment in Leicester, England, while caring for his infant daughter. In 2014, he founded Bellingcat, an open-source news outlet that has grown to include roughly a dozen staff members, with an office in The Hague. Mr. Higgins attributed his skill not to any special knowledge of international conflicts or digital data, but to the hours he had spent playing video games , which, he said, gave him the idea that any mystery can be cracked.
...
Bellingcat journalists have spread the word about their techniques in seminars attended by journalists and law-enforcement officials. Along with grants from groups like the Open Society Foundations, founded by George Soros, the seminars are a significant source of revenue for Bellingcat, a nonprofit organization.

It seems that the New York Times forgot to mention an important monetary source for Bellingcat . Here is a current screenshot of Bellingcat's About page :


bigger

Porticus, Adessium, Pax for Peace and the Postcode Lottery are all Dutch organizations. Then there is the notorious Soros organization the New York Times mentioned. But why did the NYT forgot to tell its readers that Bellingcat is financed by the National Endowment for Democracy which itself is to nearly 100% funded by the U.S. government?

Could that be because the NED, which spends U.S.government money on more than 1.600 U.S. government paid Non-Government Organizations, is a Trojan horse , a cover for the CIA?

Spurred by Watergate – the Church committee of the Senate, the Pike committee of the House, and the Rockefeller Commission, created by the president, were all busy investigating the CIA. Seemingly every other day there was a new headline about the discovery of some awful thing, even criminal conduct, the CIA had been mixed up in for years.
...
What was done was to shift many of these awful things to a new organization, with a nice sounding name – The National Endowment for Democracy. The idea was that the NED would do somewhat overtly what the CIA had been doing covertly for decades, and thus, hopefully, eliminate the stigma associated with CIA covert activities.
...
"We should not have to do this kind of work covertly," said Carl Gershman in 1986, while he was president of the Endowment. "It would be terrible for democratic groups around the world to be seen as subsidized by the C.I.A. We saw that in the 60's, and that's why it has been discontinued. We have not had the capability of doing this, and that's why the endowment was created."

And Allen Weinstein, who helped draft the legislation establishing NED, declared in 1991: "A lot of what we do today was done covertly 25 years ago by the CIA."

In effect, the CIA has been laundering money through NED.

The fact that the NED is doing the CIA's work is likely the reason why the NYT puff piece about Bellingcat forgets to mention its payments and also why it jumps to Bellingcat's and the OPCW's help:

Some journalists and activists hostile to what they characterize as Bellingcat's pro-Western narratives have criticized some of its coverage of the war in Syria.

At issue is an April 7, 2018, attack on Douma, Syria. Bellingcat reported, based on an analysis of six open-source videos, that it was "highly likely" that Douma civilians had died because of chemical weapons. In March, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons reported that there were "reasonable grounds" to say that chemical weapons had been used in the attack.

Critics of Bellingcat have pointed to an email from an investigator with the organization, saying that it raised questions about the findings. WikiLeaks published the email on Nov. 23. In a response, Bellingcat defended its reporting, saying the final report on Douma from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons reflected the concerns of the investigator whose email was published by WikiLeaks.

By playing video games Elliot Higgins learned to identify chemical attacks in dubious video sequences published by terrorist affiliates. If true it is an admirable capability. Still his assertion that the OPCW report "reflected the concerns of the investigator" who criticized it is, a as Caitlin Johnstone demonstrates , utterly false:

Bellingcat simply ignores this absolutely central aspect of the email, as well as the whistleblower's point about the symptoms of victims not matching chlorine gas poisoning.

"In this case the confidence in the identity of chlorine or any choking agent is drawn into question precisely because of the inconsistency with the reported and observed symptoms," the whistleblower writes in the email. "The inconsistency was not only noted by the [Fact Finding Mission] team but strongly noted by three toxicologists with expertise in exposure to [Chemical Weapons] agents."

Bellingcat says nothing about these revelations in the email, and says nothing about the fact that the OPCW excluded them from both its Interim Report in July 2018 and its Final Report in March 2019, the latter of which actually asserted the exact opposite saying there was "reasonable grounds that the use of a toxic chemical as a weapon took place. This toxic chemical contained reactive chlorine. The toxic chemical was likely molecular chlorine."

Bellingcat completely ignores all of these points, ...

In its defense of the OPCW report Bellingcat wrote :

[A] comparison of the points raised in the letter against the final Douma report makes it amply clear that the OPCW not only addressed these points, but even changed the conclusion of an earlier report to reflect the concerns of said employee.

Mail on Sunday columnist Peter Hitchens did not concur with that paragraph:

Apart from the words 'a', and 'the', everything in the above paragraph is, to put it politely, mistaken. Bellingcat have been so anxious to trash the leak from the OPCW that they have (as many did when the attack was first released) rushed to judgment without waiting for the facts. More is known by the whistleblowers of the OPCW than has yet been released ...

Caitlin and Peter should play more video games. I have read in the NYT that they are the true path to learning and to the factual assessment of alleged chemical attacks.

On April 7 2018 terrorists of the Jaish al Islam group ruled in Douma. They killed 40 civilians. The bodies were shown in videos along with chlorine gas canisters to pretend that the Syrian government had killed those people. The OPCW's fact finding team analyzed the evidence and found that the canisters had not been dropped from the air but where manually placed. The symptoms the victims showed were inconsistent with a chlorine attack and chlorinated substances were only found in extremely low concentrations. There were absolutely no "reasonable grounds" to say that chemical weapons had been used in the attack.

But the OPCW management, under U.S. pressure and despite the protests by its own scientists, put out a report that said the opposite. As the manipulation came to light the U.S. funded Bellingcat made a perfunctory attempt to muddle the issue. Thus another propaganda organization, the New York Times , had to jump in to save Bellingcat and the false OPCW claims.

It is not going to help. There will soon be more evidence that the OPCW management published two false reports on Douma, and likely even more on other issue. There will be a public recognition that the OPCW failed.

Posted by b on December 2, 2019 at 16:43 UTC | Permalink


worldblee , Dec 2 2019 17:18 utc | 1

It is "highly likely" that "responsible" outlets like Bellingcat will peddle "widely disproven conspiracy theories" to keep the cash coming from governments of the "free world" to preserve "democracy".
vk , Dec 2 2019 17:22 utc | 2
The difference between Syria and Iraq is former has Russia.

The OPCW can't do shit, and the American people, deep down, know this.

Nothing like an S-400 to sober up the atlanticists. It really works wonders - contrary to those video games Bellingcat has been playing.

Evo Morales, take note: violence is the key to success against the West, not peace.

Red Corvair , Dec 2 2019 17:53 utc | 3
This is a great journalistic job!! The NYT and its readers (we should call... believers?) live in an alternate state of reality! This is horrible!! As horrible as what has been living Julian Assange (or Chelsea Manning) these last 8 years.
It is essential that mainstream "institutions" like the New York Times be exposed for what they are: CIA and US government propaganda outlets!!
Maybe some independent outlets should make a regular report, a regular monitoring, of the real "fake news" such mainstream "monuments" like the NYT go on publishing and dissiminating on a daily basis without the wider public's knowledge. That's what journalists like you are doing on a regular basis.
For what the NYT has become now (but in a recent Mint Press article, Alan Macleod illustrates how the lies/propaganda of the NYT span over so many decades, since the coup against Pinochet in Chile in 1973 in any case), the NYT can disappear,but people like you are essential for a real information of the public.
Thanks again. Keep up the good work!!
psychohistorian , Dec 2 2019 18:31 utc | 4
I had no idea about Elliot "suck my balls" Higgins until going to your link b......I live a sheltered life....grin

Assuredly this man is an impeccable source for truth in our world. How could one think of challenging his findings...and of course he should be a regular source for the NYT...../snark

If this soap opera was not affecting so many lives, it would be fun to watch

Keep up the good work b.

[Dec 03, 2019] Something about Bellingcat credibility

Dec 03, 2019 | www.nytimes.com

The blogger Eliot Higgins made waves early in the decade by covering the war in Syria from a laptop in his apartment in Leicester, England, while caring for his infant daughter. In 2014, he founded Bellingcat, an open-source news outlet that has grown to include roughly a dozen staff members, with an office in The Hague. Mr. Higgins attributed his skill not to any special knowledge of international conflicts or digital data, but to the hours he had spent playing video games , which, he said, gave him the idea that any mystery can be cracked.
...
Bellingcat journalists have spread the word about their techniques in seminars attended by journalists and law-enforcement officials. Along with grants from groups like the Open Society Foundations, founded by George Soros, the seminars are a significant source of revenue for Bellingcat, a nonprofit organization.

[Dec 02, 2019] British aerial attacks using poisoning gas against Red Army in Russia in August 1919

Notable quotes:
"... "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." ..."
"... 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 19, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

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.

[Dec 02, 2019] US No doubt That Villain-Of-The-Day Has Banned Weapons

Notable quotes:
"... "There can be no doubt in the international community's mind that Syria has retained chemical weapons in violation of its agreement and its statement that it had removed them all. There is no longer any doubt ," Mattis told reporters. ..."
"... there's absolutely No Doubt that the Outlaw US Empire's mouthpieces are lying yet again. ..."
"... Perhaps the more disturbing alternative is Mattis is fully aware of everything surrounding the run up to the 2003 Iraq war and is thinking to himself: "Declaring there is no doubt worked last time..." ..."
"... The particular genius of our oppressors has been to erode the public's collective memory. With a dumbed-down educational system, a 24-hour propaganda, and an utterly vacuous popular culture, we are deprived of precisely that faculty on which following Burke's admonition depends. With our "post-literate" reliance on the Internet, it's a wonder any of us can remember what happened last week. ..."
"... If the Syrians used them, then clearly they have them. Did the Syrians use them? The US does not recognize that as a valid question. That is where Mattis goes astray. It is a valid question. We were fooled by false flag use before. There are signs it may have happened again. It is not clear enough to be sure, but it is not clear enough to be sure the other way either. ..."
"... That men do not learn very much from the lessons of history is the most important of all the lessons of history. ~Aldous Huxley ..."
Apr 30, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org

U.S.: 'No doubt' That Villain-Of-The-Day Has Banned Weapons

Mattis: ' No doubt ' Syrian regime has chemical weapons , April 21, 2017

"There can be no doubt in the international community's mind that Syria has retained chemical weapons in violation of its agreement and its statement that it had removed them all. There is no longer any doubt ," Mattis told reporters.

Full text of Dick Cheney's speech , August 27, 2002

Simply stated, there is no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction. There is no doubt he is amassing them to use against our friends, against our allies, and against us. And there is no doubt that his aggressive regional ambitions will lead him into future confrontations with his neighbors ...

"Those who don't know history are doomed to repeat it."

― Edmund Burke

karlof1 | Apr 21, 2017 1:46:09 PM | 1

And there's absolutely No Doubt that the Outlaw US Empire's mouthpieces are lying yet again. Makes me even more curious as to what Putin said to Tillerson, as both Putin's and Lavrov's remarks about the global situation are blunter and more accusatory than ever before. Given the info provided by Lavrov at the press conference following the meeting of their Foreign Ministers Astana, I must assume the SCO nations are on the same page regarding the entire International Situation. In June in Astana, the SCO Summit will admit India and Pakistan as full members and begin the process to enroll Iran. Here, again, is the link to that press release, http://www.mid.ru/en/foreign_policy/news/-/asset_publisher/cKNonkJE02Bw/content/id/2734712
WG | Apr 21, 2017 1:47:24 PM | 2
Perhaps the more disturbing alternative is Mattis is fully aware of everything surrounding the run up to the 2003 Iraq war and is thinking to himself: "Declaring there is no doubt worked last time..."
Harry | Apr 21, 2017 1:56:09 PM | 3
The particular genius of our oppressors has been to erode the public's collective memory. With a dumbed-down educational system, a 24-hour propaganda, and an utterly vacuous popular culture, we are deprived of precisely that faculty on which following Burke's admonition depends. With our "post-literate" reliance on the Internet, it's a wonder any of us can remember what happened last week.
Mark Thomason | Apr 21, 2017 1:58:45 PM | 4
If the Syrians used them, then clearly they have them. Did the Syrians use them? The US does not recognize that as a valid question. That is where Mattis goes astray. It is a valid question. We were fooled by false flag use before. There are signs it may have happened again. It is not clear enough to be sure, but it is not clear enough to be sure the other way either.

Therefore, Mattis is wrong to conclude anything either way. However, given the official position of the US, he can hardly say anything different in public.

We ought to be looking at this very closely, but we vetoed such a close look by the international body that would do it. That would put into question the missile strikes we launched based on assumptions.

karlof1 | Apr 21, 2017 2:09:35 PM | 5
Pepe Escobar evokes T.S. Eliot's Hollow Men in his latest enumeration of Russia & China's strategic relationship. Oh, and I forgot to mention in #1 that BRICS also stands with Russia regarding all events Syria and Ukraine; and despite many efforts to destabilize it, BRICS still stands in solidarity and continues its work to economically counter the Outlaw US Empire, which Pepe also reminds us about, https://sputniknews.com/columnists/201704211052866086-washington-terrified-of-russia-china/

SmoothieX12 | Apr 21, 2017 2:10:55 PM | 6
@2, WG

Perhaps the more disturbing alternative is Mattis is fully aware of everything surrounding the run up to the 2003 Iraq war and is thinking to himself:

"Declaring there is no doubt worked last time..."

Mattis' motivation is completely different.

Mina | Apr 21, 2017 2:11:30 PM | 7
http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/265369/World/Region/Syria-evacuees-on-move-again-after-hour-delay.aspx
De Mistura admits that someone lured the children with some sweets
http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/265361/World/Region/Iraqi-officials--hostages,-including-Qatari-royals.aspx
Does he admit it may have something to do with Qataris in iraq?

laserlurk | Apr 21, 2017 2:16:33 PM | 8
Why would insignificant village be intentionally "gassed by Assad" while he has an absolute upper hand on the field? - is the question nobody in the Western media asks, nor has an answer to it.

Bio-chem weapons would be last resort to use on the battlefield in a desperate situation - was an original thought of making and having them.

Me and probably all of us here have no doubt that it is just a false flag perpetrated, oversaturated and pathetically served to us to validate continuation to oust Assad for Saudi's concessions, oil and money. Pure con and a rather amateurish one.
As expected, no doubt. :)

chet380 | Apr 21, 2017 2:20:39 PM | 9
Which state is Iran's greatest enemy? - Israel .. Where was the statement made? .. Who are the greatest financial political contributors in America? Res Ipsa Loquitur.

ruralito | Apr 21, 2017 2:21:37 PM | 10
Their lies are pitched to induce psychosis.

Mike Maloney | Apr 21, 2017 2:21:38 PM | 11
The importance of Mattis's pronouncement, as well as some " tilling of the soil " in the prestige press, is that another false flag attack is coming. The Hillary-McCain directive to take out Syrian airfields is going to be implemented.

MadMax2 | Apr 21, 2017 2:27:09 PM | 12
@1 karlof1
Talking Lavrov, talking history... The comprehensive history lesson Lavrov delivers to Tillerson is worth watching a number of times. It is an absolute shut down, in Tillersons face...rolling straight off the tongue.
Tillerson: 'trust us, we are sure, beyond doubt, Assad has chemical weapons'
Lavrov: 'here have this 5 minute history lesson you cabbage. '

The Mattis/Cheney comparison reminds me of the statements of the Canadian & Australian Prime Ministers prior to the Iraq 2003.

Eugene | Apr 21, 2017 2:30:06 PM | 13
And then when Mattis is dumped, he'll do the same as Colin Powell did. Welcome to the show. Bring your own popcorn.

Marko | Apr 21, 2017 2:36:44 PM | 14
@10

"Their lies are pitched to induce psychosis."

Speaking for myself , I think it's working.

harrylaw | Apr 21, 2017 2:38:55 PM | 15
SmoothieX12 Difference this time is Syria has Russian backing and the BRICS [almost half the population of the World].Russia knows Syria is the key to the Middle East, if Syria fell, Hezbollah could not resist the head choppers from the North and East and attacks from the aparthied state from the South. Iran would then be exposed and attacked financially and militarily. Of course its a huge gamble, will those nutcases in Washington take it? These are existential stakes for many states in the region.

Perimetr | Apr 21, 2017 2:46:14 PM | 16
https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/201704211052869570-israel-warplanes-syria-army/
Israeli aviation launched a missile attack on Syrian army's positions in the province of Quneitra bordering Israeli-controlled Golan Heights, a Syrian military source told Sputnik.

wwinsti | Apr 21, 2017 3:05:38 PM | 17
@harrylaw #15

Assad's recent announcement about wanting to buy more Russian air defense systems comes close to addmiting that the Russians will not be defending Syrian airspace.

To paraphrase tRump:

...the submarines, even more powerful than the carriers...

So, all the assets are in place. We're starting to see the accusation swarm against Assad occur at a rate that's too fast to refute individual charges against the Syrian president.

Don't be surprised if the decapitation strikes against Syria and N.Korea happen simultaneously.


Mina | Apr 21, 2017 3:30:35 PM | 18
Macron gave a martial speech explaining that he would defend France from more terror and that would imply out of the borders...

dh | Apr 21, 2017 4:05:30 PM | 19
@18 This probably won't appear in the MSM so I'll post it here...

"Emmanuel Macron fears this as well. The 39-year-old presidential candidate – an unknown quantity here just two years ago– is campaigning for the Jewish vote, keenly aware of the threat. But when France goes to the polls on Sunday, its Jews will face a unique choice: To vote in the spirit of Jewish Americans, prioritizing principles of welfare and liberal democratic values, or in the Israeli posture, with security first in mind.

Macron is betting on the former, appealing to Jewish community values shared with the French Republic of liberty, equality and fraternity.

"He knows there is a real danger from a double extremism – from the far-Right with Marine Le Pen, and from the far-Left," said Gilles Taieb, a prominent member of the French Jewish community who joined Macron's En Marche! campaign in August. "He understands the specific needs of the Jewish community.""


http://www.jpost.com/Diaspora/Macron-fights-for-Frances-Jewish-vote-488269

Yul | Apr 21, 2017 4:11:51 PM | 20
@ dh #19

He does not have to worry - he used to work for the Edmond de Rothschild Bank (Jewish family -closed ties to Israel)

SmoothieX12 | Apr 21, 2017 4:15:37 PM | 21
@17

Assad's recent announcement about wanting to buy more Russian air defense systems comes close to addmiting that the Russians will not be defending Syrian airspace.

This is rather a confusing (in BBC's or NYT vein) statement, since Russia, through a number of her high ranking representatives openly stated that she will upgrade Syria's AD. Syria IS NOT going to buy them, since has very little precious money, but what Syria is doing already is letting a truck load of Russia's extracting and construction companies on her market. Google Translate will do the job (link is in Russian)

https://vz.ru/news/2017/4/21/867336.html

SmoothieX12 | Apr 21, 2017 4:22:12 PM | 22
@15, Harrylaw

Iran would then be exposed and attacked financially and militarily.

I have a different opinion about this dynamics and I will not be surprised if Iran "suddenly" will become a full member of ODKB. At least for a little while.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collective_Security_Treaty_Organization

wwinsti | Apr 21, 2017 4:28:15 PM | 23
@SmoothieX12

Fog of war warning and all, but Assad definitely mentioned price as a factor in getting New AD systems in a sputniknews interview.

https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/201704211052845528-russia-syria-assad-air-defense/

SmoothieX12 | Apr 21, 2017 4:49:15 PM | 24
@23

Fog of war warning and all, but Assad definitely mentioned price as a factor in getting New AD systems in a sputniknews interview.

Of course, mechanism of what in Russian is called vzaimoraschety (mutual "payments" or "coverage") is always established. The price of military technology may be compensated through other means, such as contractual preferences or any other privileges. I think Russia's oil companies will be quite happy and so will be weapons' manufacturers. Come to think about it--they already are.

harrylaw | Apr 21, 2017 5:17:08 PM | 25
The question of Russian air defence missiles to Syria should not even be asked, Israel has nuclear weapons, the US don't care, the US supplies Israel with the latest OFFENSIVE weaponry and aircraft [f35, f16 ect]plus Iron Dome. It would be the height of folly for Russia not to give Syria the means to defend themselves.

harrylaw | Apr 21, 2017 5:31:08 PM | 26
I forgot nuclear capable submarines from Germany [with a discount thrown in].

Alaric | Apr 21, 2017 5:37:17 PM | 27
The Russians and Iranians need to end this already. The US clearly wants to try regime change again.

Information_Agent | Apr 21, 2017 5:38:24 PM | 28
Just as an FYI, I'm unable to access this site when I use a VPN server based in Canada, however VPN servers located elsewhere connect without issue. Anyone else experience this?

jfl | Apr 21, 2017 5:55:59 PM | 29
what's the sound of one mad dog jarhead barking? if it sounds off in the media echo-chamber, does it make a noise? it only echoes in the tnc msm. every american knows he's howling at the moon. it may well be that there's plenty of energy among those clipping coupons on american war bonds for more war, and no energy among those who fruitlessly opposed empire in the face of those same coupon-clippers.

its all-war, all-the-time with tee-rump just as it was with obama, bush, and clinton before him. people who are surprised at this are no more acute than those who might salute the flag the mad dogs have again run up the flag pole.

speaking of russia 'extracting' and 'constructing' in syria, the us of a is doing same in iraq : US approves nearly $300 million weapons deal to Kurdish Peshmerga . hi ho, you owe.

it would be exceptionally keen if all those cruise missiles unleashed on syria and/or north korea not only turned around, but struck their origin. wouldn't that be the end?

ben | Apr 21, 2017 5:56:34 PM | 30
The American public has to be the most ignorant and gullible group of ass-hats on the planet, if they fall for this BS being shoveled at them again. God-almighty this crap gets old!!!

All for the sake of global hegemony, and more wealth for the Trumps of the world.

peter | Apr 21, 2017 6:16:39 PM | 31
@12 madmax

First of all, I don't know how you can tell those speeches are the same though I heard them both mention WMDs. But here's the kicker, that's not the Canadian PM, not on that date, he was the Leader of the Opposition at that time. Harper became PM later.

Jean Chretien was the PM and he kept Canada out of Iraq. End of story.

likklemore | Apr 21, 2017 6:19:02 PM | 32
b cites Edmund Burke "Those who don't know history are doomed to repeat it."

There is also this little ditty:

"If at first you don't succeed try and try and try again. Never stop trying."

It works very well for TPTB who hold the sheeples are too dumbed down and will never recall moving lips.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

@ Perimetr 16

Israel needs to take the other side of the Golan - that's where the oil bubbles bigly. Ask Genie HQ NJ and while at it check out their Board of Directors, Strategic Advisory Board.
Hint, it's the gang and No One dares to spank
[Alert: page may load slowly but a worthy wait].

So forget about it. The op word is Strategic

Israel can strike Syria with 10 MOABs per second 24hr/7 and lips will be festiviously sealed tighter than a crabs rear-end.

A long essay by Robert Kennedy Jr Feb 2016:


"[W]e may want to look beyond the convenient explanations of religion and ideology and focus on the more complex rationales of history and oil, which mostly point the finger of blame for terrorism back at the champions of militarism, imperialism and petroleum here on our own shores," Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., intoned in an April editorial for Ecowatch

Peter AU | Apr 21, 2017 6:26:21 PM | 33
US Embassey Syria twitter acount is worth a read through. Reality has ceased to exist for the US admin.
https://twitter.com/USEmbassySyria

woogs | Apr 21, 2017 7:24:19 PM | 34
Also from Edmund Burke:

When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle.

Not from Edmund Burke, but a favorite if mine:

The mightiest oak is just a little nut that wouldn't give up.

james | Apr 21, 2017 7:37:56 PM | 35
thanks b... waiting for the exceptional empire to collapse.. not holding my breathe here.. the same game is being played and the same folks are hoping for the same results.. they are already getting them when it comes to money thrown into war and prep for war.. they are winning regardless if they can convince everyone to go deeper..

@17 wwinsti.. could be a head fake... no one knows for sure other then assad and russia.. welcome to the world of endless speculation..


@28 ia... this canuck is not having any issues accessing moa.. who nose.. maybe trudeau and freeland have set up a firewall to protect us from a different perspective then the 'rah, rah, rah - war 24/7 we support twitter mans agenda'..

@34 woogs.. good quote on the bottom. thanks.

MadMax2 | Apr 21, 2017 8:06:30 PM | 36
@31 peter
Indeed you're correct re: Chretien - and fair play to him. Though, the transcripts are fairly damning, as is the resignation of the plagiarist:
http://www.cbc.ca/beta/news/canada/harper-staffer-quits-over-plagiarized-2003-speech-on-iraq-1.756590

ALberto | Apr 21, 2017 8:19:17 PM | 37
When WWIII commences I wonder which side Switzerland will throw their lot in with?

iegee | Apr 21, 2017 9:23:52 PM | 38
The verdict on the chemical attack was swift and certain. When it comes to the recent bus bombing, somehow it is so different:
We are investigating, but I don't have any specific ... But we think it's exaggerated .
Inqury on Syria. Security Council Stakeout, 21 April, 2017

Those people have no shame. They are not going to investigate the Khan Sheikhoun chemical attack. All the want is the flight plans from the Syrian government to finish their "work".

x | Apr 21, 2017 10:10:23 PM | 39
"No doubt" is not a statement about an objective reality out there (in country x); it is a statement about the subjective reality in the mind of the speaker (observer). A cunning ploy to speak a non-falsehood (about the mental conditioning of speaker and audience) that is merely opinion implying it is fact about a situation lacking empirical evidence.

Hoarsewhisperer | Apr 21, 2017 10:42:45 PM | 40
This hype is getting so tedious.
The WMD crap from The International (Christian Colonial) Community isn't about 'manufacturing consent'. It's about manufacturing CONSENSUS within the Christian Colonial Community itself. The Jew-controlled MSM takes care of the brainwashing. We already know that bribed politicians are paid to disregard the Will Of The People.

stumpy | Apr 21, 2017 11:24:26 PM | 41
@40, HW, the power of their glory...

Marko | Apr 22, 2017 12:14:53 AM | 42
@38

"Those people have no shame. They are not going to investigate the Khan Sheikhoun chemical attack."

They're just plugging stuff into the dossier so that historians will be able to look back and see how reasonable and restrained the U.S. was before deciding to bomb the crap out of Assad and his country.

Here's how they can do that : They say " Look , we admit that proving guilt absolutely is next to impossible in these events , and that we may have been a bit hasty in bombing Syria's airfield before the investigation was done. We'll even concede the odds in Assad's favor , say 3:1 , or only a 25% chance he was guilty for any given sarin attack , even though we're pretty sure he's been the culprit. Just know this , when we're sure - let's set a higher standard here and say 90% certainty - when we're sure about his culpability for just one use of sarin , big or small , that's our red line, after that he gets the full Gaddafi , no questions asked. OK ? Understand ? "

Everyone nods , probably including some here. When there's any uncertainty , which there always is , he gives Assad the benefit of the doubt , and then requires a higher threshold to hold him accountable. You can't get more reasonable than that.

Well , maybe somewhat predictably , false-flag activity picks up - two sarin attacks per month over the following two months , always with the typical doubts about who dunnit. The U.S. keeps their word , with no significant escalation. With the next event , as soon as sarin is confirmed but well before we think we know who was guilty , the U.S. announces breach of the red line and launches a full-scale attack on Assad and his partners , demanding that he step down immediately or watch as his country is turned to rubble. Why ?

Counting the three sarin attacks to date , and the five more that follow , the probability that the rebels committed all eight attacks is .75^8 , or 10%. That means there's a 90% chance that Assad was responsible for at least one attack - i.e. , he crossed the red line.

That's why the false-flags will continue , and why a regime-change war with Syria is inevitable , and why the buy-in by the public when it happens will be nearly unanimous.

lysander | Apr 22, 2017 12:49:39 AM | 43
@ 17, wwinsti,

That could just as easily be interpreted as Russia planning to intervene while claiming that "Syrian" air defenses have shot down US aircraft/tomohawaks. I certainly don't know for sure that Russia has actually decided to take it to that level. Perhaps the Russians will never do that, or perhaps they themselves have not yet decided but want to keep that option open to them if later they do. At any rate, there is no advantage at all to reassuring the Americans that they will NOT intervene. It is best to keep Mattis and McMaster guessing just like we are.

I do not know to what degree US planners are confident of easily overcoming serious air defenses. They probably feel that if they defeat the S400s then US military dominance will remain unchallenged for a very long time. I'm not sure if they've gamed the opposite outcome. If "Syria" shoots down a few F22s or 35s the US is in deep trouble and any victory (to the extent bringing jihadists to power can be called a victory) would be a Pyrhic one.

V. Arnold | Apr 22, 2017 1:30:21 AM | 44
Well, fuck! Here we go again; U.S. is blitzing the international airways with propaganda and lies.
Zieg heil, zeig heil, herr Trump...
You bloody, rotten, bastard!

guy | Apr 22, 2017 1:54:30 AM | 45
Karlof1 and Harrylaw: talking about BRICS'support to Russia, never trust Brazil. After Lula and Rousseff,the right-wing president Michel Temer has transformed the country in just another latin american lackey of Trump...

james | Apr 22, 2017 3:12:32 AM | 46
@42 hey marko.. your writing style reminds me of paveways..

wwinsti | Apr 22, 2017 3:24:45 AM | 47
@ lydander #42:

Of course, there's no way to predict the outcomes of certain actions or read minds of any of the various actors involved with this sarin drama, but the events in Syria since Sept. 2015 or even Sept. 2001 do allow us to lean our interpretations a certain way, don't you think?

At the end of the day, an increasingly desperate USA has available 4 Ohio class submarines that carry just short of 200 cruise missiles each. They are, with some quibbling, decapitation weapon systems designed to overwhelm nearly any defense. I can't see the US not making use of such a capacity if they are as hell bent on regime change as they claim.

wwinsti | Apr 22, 2017 3:27:00 AM | 48
I meant lysander@ 43. Apologies.

Marko | Apr 22, 2017 3:37:48 AM | 49
@46

"your writing style reminds me of paveways"

James,

My writing style reminds you of a laser-guided bomb ? Really ? Cool.

I've always thought of it more like a barrel bomb full of cluster munitions , with a dash of incendiary and a few cow pies.

michaelj72 | Apr 22, 2017 3:39:37 AM | 50
"no doubt" and "no longer any doubt" always means to me that there's plenty of good reasons to doubt everything they say.

in fact, I consider it to be an indicator that they are lying about whatever they are saying. and they "no doubt" know it....


harrylaw | Apr 22, 2017 4:07:12 AM | 51
Because the strike on Syrian territory was against International law http://www.dw.com/en/us-missile-strike-on-syria-a-violation-of-international-law/a-38389950 Putin has to make up his mind, if the US strike Syria again or repeatedly without harming Russial personnel or assets and without a military response, Russia should sue for peace and get the hell out of Syria, thereby acknowledging that the US are the only Nation that can decide the fate of Nations with regard to International affairs. In other words the unanimous agreement of the 5 veto wielding members of the UNSC will no longer be applicable and article 2 of the UN Charter is null and void.

Article 2. [3] UN Charter All Members shall settle their international disputes by peaceful means in such a manner that international peace and security, and justice, are not endangered.

[4] All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.

Peter AU | Apr 22, 2017 4:25:43 AM | 52
51 "Russia should sue for peace and get the hell out of Syria"
??

col from oz | Apr 22, 2017 4:56:26 AM | 53
number 4

Are you the NEW York Times commentator. I really enjoy your comments their. I hardly drop by NYT however this week you were the only sane poster on North Korea. Your a jem keep it up. In fact I think cut and pasted you comment onto a Australian paper. Bravo.

lysander | Apr 22, 2017 5:19:47 AM | 54
@ 47 wwinsti,

Yes, the US has an enormous amount of cruise missiles. But judging by the damage done by the last 60 tomohawaks, it does not have enough to destroy Syrian air power with tomohawaks alone. In past invasions, they were used to destroy radars so that the subsequent air campaign can be conducted without contending with air defenses. They are not an end in and of themselves. In this case, that isn't possible unless the US plans on attacking Russian forces on both land and sea directly. The US is so far extremely reluctant to kill any Russian personnel and that is not likely to change. And this reluctance is not because of good sportsmanship.

Add to that, the Russians have shut down the deconfliction line. It means the US can't warn the Russians to get out of the way during the next attack. In other words, the Russians are prepared to be human shields to protect Syria. That does not scream "we are backing down" to me. There are also indications that US and allied sortie rates over Syria have dropped in number quite substantially since communication has been shut down.

While I agree the US is absolutely determined to destroy Syria, it is not at all clear that Russia plans to step aside while the US does it.

Pft | Apr 22, 2017 6:20:11 AM | 55
OT but LA, SF, NYC all experience power outages at the same and only RT makes the connection while MSM oblivious. Meanwhile exercises for an EMZ attack over a major US city ongoing. Strange

harrylaw | Apr 22, 2017 6:34:57 AM | 56
Peter AU @52. Sorry Peter I was being a little sarcastic. I think it has already been established that any US attack on Syria must be countered in the first instance by Syrian forces, since Russia was invited into Syria to help put down terrorism, it might not be in Russia's interest or anybody's [unless their forces are hit] to start WW3. Hence my point about arming Syria up the same way the US does with Israel and Saudi Arabia.All 5 veto wielding powers are of course above International law for all time, so that if the other members of the Security Council propose a Resolution condemning US aggression, the US simply uses its veto and that Resolution goes down the memory hole. Here is an excellent article on the veto.. http://www.david-morrison.org.uk/iraq/ags-legal-advice.pdf

Felicity | Apr 22, 2017 6:36:24 AM | 57

As you, remembering the last lies. Thank you for your peerless, ever spot on, shining pieces.

http://www.globalresearch.ca/legal-bombshell-former-iraqi-army-chief-of-staff-to-prosecute-tony-blair/5586196

ashley albanese | Apr 22, 2017 7:15:01 AM | 58
Lysander 54
The U S should keep in mind that the Russians did burn Moscow in 1812 .

Eric Zuesse | Apr 22, 2017 7:15:46 AM | 59
"Those who don't know history are doomed to repeat it" does not appear in the complete 12-volume set of Works of Edmund Burke, and Bartlett's books of quotations have never included it, but the allegation nowadays is common that Burke said this, because many writers say things that are false. Anyone who trusts a mere allegation, like gossip, is not reliable and cannot be trusted in what that person alleges, because falsehoods mix in with truths for any such person. The person isn't necessarily fabricating, not necessarily intentionally falsifying; the person just doesn't care whether what he or she alleges to be true IS true. Any such person is untrustworthy to cite on anything.

Furthermore, that alleged Burke-quotation doesn't even sound like Burke's writing-style, which was a very distinctive style. So, anyone who has actually read Burke would suspect that this apocryphal statement from him was probably never said by him. Only pretentious people would allege that Burke said it -- people who pretend to have read Burke.

jfl | Apr 22, 2017 7:29:32 AM | 60
@54 lysander, 'In other words, the Russians are prepared to be human shields to protect Syria.'

i don't think that's the message sent or that it's indicative of the action to be taken in the event of another us attack on syria. as it stood pre-tee-rump-attack the us could call the russians and 'warn' them that the cruise missiles were theirs ... now they can no longer do that, and the russians have made a point of stating that an attacking aircraft/missile - and the originating vessel/station - are going to be shot down/taken down ... that the russians will not waste time in trying to figure out just whose attacking missiles/aircraft they are destroying.

i think it will be a cold day in hell before the russians 'sacrifice' themselves to make a point.

V. Arnold | Apr 22, 2017 7:38:51 AM | 61
Eric Zuesse | Apr 22, 2017 7:15:46 AM | 59
"Those who don't know history are doomed to repeat it"

This from, of all places, Yahoo answers (blech); however it is referenced;
CITES: George Santayana, The Life of Reason or The Phases of Human Progress: Reason in Common Sense 284 (2nd ed., Charles Scribner's Sons, New York, New York 1924 (originally published 1905 Charles Scribner's Sons)(appears in chapter XII, "Flux and Constancy in Human Nature")). George Santayana, The Life of Reason or The Phases of Human Progress 82 (one-volume edition, Charles Scribner's Sons, New York, New York 1954)(appears in Book I, Reason in Common Sense, chapter 10, "Flux and Constancy in Human Nature").

This information was found at: http://members.aol.com/Santayana/gsguestbook.htm
``Those who don't know history are doomed to repeat it,'' said Penton, echoing philosopher George Santayana's famous admonition.

http://scholar.lib.vt.edu/VA-news/VA-Pilot/issues/1995/vp951119/11170741.htm

In any event, I agree with your admonition...

Addendum; cannot access references, so maybe more garbage.

Posted by: V. Arnold | Apr 22, 2017 7:41:25 AM | 62

Addendum; cannot access references, so maybe more garbage.

Posted by: V. Arnold | Apr 22, 2017 7:41:25 AM | 62

Anon1 | Apr 22, 2017 7:42:55 AM | 63
All this lies, fake news, psyop by US, NATO and MSM is possibly just because they rule the world. They refuse any other views, parties, nations questioning their wars and propaganda. Its quite scary when you think about it.
Like, is there ANYONE condemning this in the MSM nowadays? No one.
Every journalist (MSM) from Germany, to US, to Spain, to Portugal, to Columbia, to Sweden, to South Korea etc, all western MSM peddle this same propaganda for the american empire and their endless wars.

1984?

@ 60, I don't think sacrifice is the word I would use. The US understands that killing openly Russian soldiers soldiers (vs indirectly by arming terrorist proxies) would mean Russian retaliation. And therefore will not do it.

Posted by: lysander | Apr 22, 2017 7:46:14 AM | 64

@ 60, I don't think sacrifice is the word I would use. The US understands that killing openly Russian soldiers soldiers (vs indirectly by arming terrorist proxies) would mean Russian retaliation. And therefore will not do it.

Posted by: lysander | Apr 22, 2017 7:46:14 AM | 64

V. Arnold | Apr 22, 2017 7:48:07 AM | 65
...and then there is this;
"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." (George Santayana)

I've got news for Mr. Santayana: we're doomed to repeat the past no matter what. That's what it is to be alive."
― Kurt Vonnegut

john | Apr 22, 2017 7:50:16 AM | 66
Eric Zuesse

well, we're real impressed that you've memorized all 12 volumes of Edmund Burke, but for those of us who haven't, Google does credit him with this remark. a simple oversight, perhaps? so thanks for the lesson(even if you haven't cleared anything up), and the mini diatribe, teach, even though your scholarly footnotes have fuck all to do with b's intent.

Curtis | Apr 22, 2017 7:56:57 AM | 67
"no doubt"
Did they get this from Bush's speech to congress in March, 2003?
"Intelligence gathered by this and other governments leaves no doubt that the Iraq regime continues to possess and conceal some of the most lethal weapons ever devised."
Real intelligence left all kinds of doubt especially from the family members of Iraqi scientists who went into Iraq to ask. They risked their lives for this and were ignored.

"we assess" - recent prepeated mantra from USG declarations. I'm waiting for The Donald or his CIA minion to declare Syrian WMDs to be a "slam dunk." I think Cheney used to say "we have it on good authority." The rule for most politicians and media is if their lips move they're lying.

Curtis | Apr 22, 2017 7:59:29 AM | 68
Perhaps after another coalition of the willing has destroyed Syria will the US president joke about searching for WMDs like Bush did. An insult to us all.

Formerly T-Bear | Apr 22, 2017 8:41:31 AM | 69
@ 59 and ff commentary

The Oxford Concise Dictionary of Quotations has the quote "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it" made by George Santayana (1863 - 1952) in The Life of Reason (1905) vol. 1, ch. 12

Oxford is fairly reliable sourcing for such questions, FWIW. As far as the western world and history another quote comes to mind from Dante Alighiere (1265-1321) that translates: Abandon all hope, you who enter! [with regard to history].

Curtis | Apr 22, 2017 10:34:43 AM | 70
We need a Jon Stewart style montage of all these people saying "no doubt" followed by the group No Doubt saying it. (like he did with the GOP/FNC meme of "It's A Trap")

Curtis | Apr 22, 2017 10:36:27 AM | 71
"The mightiest oak is just a little nut that wouldn't give up."
woogs 34

I am Groot.

james | Apr 22, 2017 12:22:11 PM | 72
@49 marko.. - good stuff either way, lol..

Piotr Berman | Apr 22, 2017 12:22:18 PM | 73
"Counting the three sarin attacks to date , and the five more that follow , the probability that the rebels committed all eight attacks is .75^8 , or 10%. That means there's a 90% chance that Assad was responsible for at least one attack - i.e. , he crossed the red line."

I understand that this was presented as an incorrect reasoning, but perhaps not all readers here see the mistakes. First, probability is used to describe random events and not historical events. The post that you see here could be written by Piotr Berman, an identifiable individual, or by an impostor. In itself the claim that it was written by Piotr Berman is true or false, it does not have probability. However, from the point of view of a reader, it is but one of a large number of comments posted on internet so one can apply some guessed estimates, like "10% of comments signed with uniquely identifiable names are written by impostors". This of course begs the question how we arrive at such estimates etc. In short, the probability assigned to a single sarin attack is an exhalation from someones terminal end of the digestive system and quite hazardous if used.

However, even if we form an abstract model in which a chemical attack is randomly perpetrated by X with probability p and not by X with probability 1-p, and we have 8 attacks, the probability that X perpetrated at least one attack is anywhere between 0 and 1. The formula (1-p)^8 applies only if the events are independent. For example, if X possesses the means to perpetrate an attack with probability q, then the probability that it perpetrated any of many attacks is never larger than q.

That said, probabilities have their place in war strategy. If a false flag attack has a random effect on a key decision maker, that repeating it many times may increase the probability that a desired decision will be made. And Trump's and Obama's behavior has (and had) a degree of randomness.

james | Apr 22, 2017 12:33:58 PM | 74
@73 piotr.. that logic is insane of course..

Marko | Apr 22, 2017 1:54:22 PM | 75
@73

piotr,

You're correct about the technical probability considerations , of course , but I think the real-life effect of each new false-flag may fall closer to the line drawn by the bad model than by the good. I think all parties involved know that each new false-flag has an incremental impact driving us closer to war ,in addition to the random one you mention , at least as long as there remains considerable doubt about the true culprit with each new event.

From Khan al-Assal to Ghouta to Khan Sheikhoun we've moved closer and closer to the real "red line". For the anti-Assad camp , the false-flag strategy is still working and they'll keep it up , though I'm sure they're getting impatient. For the Assad side , gaining territory has the opposite effect , moving us away from the red line. Had Assad and Putin doubled-down on battlefield intensity after Aleppo and made further gains , rather than pausing as they did , I think they'd be in much better shape today.

Dean | Apr 22, 2017 2:10:38 PM | 76
How close is the USA and Israel? Look at Mattis's lapel pin during his presser.

https://www.almasdarnews.com/article/us-led-coalition-methodically-remove-defense-secretary/

Isn't that normally the country he represents?

IMO this shows that Israel foreign policy = USA foreign policy.

MusicofE | Apr 22, 2017 5:30:48 PM | 77
I I follow the link to the U.S. embassy Twitter page @33, unbelievable!. The Trump administration partying like it is 1984.

Piotr Berman | Apr 22, 2017 7:37:20 PM | 78
The usage of "there can be no doubt" is a bit different from what we could learn in English classes. First, "doubt" is a kind of thought-weed that is at times harmless, and at times seriously detrimental and thus subjected to eradication efforts. "There is no doubt" declares the success of the eradication campaign while "There can be no doubt" is more like "There should not be any doubt", i.e. an exhortation to continue and expand eradication campaign. Usually the large fields of major agribusiness companies are well tended with copious amounts of herbicides, while on the edges, meadows, smaller organically tended fields etc. the weeds can survive and in isolated places they can even thrive.

From that point of view excessive consumption of, say, NYT or TV news can make people positive for "symptoms of sarin or sarin-like chemicals" like Roundup when we take swabs from their mucosal surfaces and analyze with sensitive instruments. Smaller but proudly "mainstream" publications like New Yorker have no doubt either (in this case it is easy, because New Yorker is very compartmentalized, few individuals are allowed to write on the topic, this way they can keep doubt from showing without mass use of chemicals). The Nation has some articles written by doubt-free persons (like Katha Pollit) but doubt levels are significant -- kept down mostly by small number of articles on Syria. And Counterpunch is a weed in itself.

AKSA | Apr 22, 2017 7:56:06 PM | 79
@ Dean | Apr 22, 2017 2:10:38 PM | 76

No kidding!? How old are you?

How about this: The US is prime Nazi country/regime, and the Zionist state is modeled after the US, or the European racism. The settler states are known for its unprecedented violence. Unfortunately, still the phenomenon of extermination is connected with Germany and not the US.

http://warisacrime.org/content/how-us-race-laws-inspired-nazis

One of many U.S. state laws that Nazis examined was this from Maryland:

"All marriages between a white person and a Negro, or between a white person and a person of Negro descent, to the third generation, inclusive, or between a white person and a member of the Malay race or between a Negro and a member of the Malay race, or between a person of Negro descent to the third generation, inclusive, and a member of the Malay race . . . [skipping over many variations] . . . are forever prohibited . . . punished by imprisonment in the penitentiary for not less than eighteen months nor more than ten years."

jfl | Apr 22, 2017 8:31:15 PM | 80
@78 bp. 'From that point of view excessive consumption of, say, NYT or TV news can make people positive for "symptoms of sarin or sarin-like chemicals" like Roundup when we take swabs from their mucosal surfaces and analyze with sensitive instruments.'

very nice piotr berman. the metaphor is so well drawn, and in the following cases as well. One has a malady, here, a malady. One feels a malady.

the dysfunctions all swell from a common source, into a slum of bloom. the wigs despoiling the Satan ear.

karlof1 | Apr 22, 2017 10:24:15 PM | 81
guy @45--

Yes, I was apprehensive at first, but the new regime toed BRICS's lines, participated in its functions as usual, and has tried to use it in its national interest. Brazil's internal contradictions don't allow it to abandon its one big success story. And as I stated, BRICS policy declarations are all in line with Russia and China's in every area.

psychohistorian | Apr 23, 2017 2:32:49 AM | 82
@ karlof1 who writes about geopolitics

While many of the big brains go to Wall St. to front guess Mr. Market, there are others, "no doubt", that build geopolitical dashboards, models and simulations for the elite to monitor all the countries/governments/militaries/public.

In spite of their visibility of their universe, they are losing control and know it. The absurdity of the ongoing global debt situation is a tell.

All countries have evolving relationships with both the US and China as well as within the various groups of nations. China is talking growth and the US/private finance is talking austerity. It is not if but a matter of when growth wins out and global finance is put under public control.

Temporarily Sane | Apr 23, 2017 8:43:48 AM | 83
That men do not learn very much from the lessons of history is the most important of all the lessons of history. ~Aldous Huxley

Afghan officials have said nearly 100 militants and no civilians were killed, but the remoteness of the area, the presence of Islamic State fighters, and, more recently, American security forces, has left those claims unverified.

[Dec 02, 2019] British aerial attacks using poisining gas against Red Army in Russia in August 1919

British elite is capable to commit any crimes imaginable perusing its goals.
Notable quotes:
"... "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." ..."
Apr 19, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

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.

[Dec 02, 2019] Hitchens If Bodies Like OPCW Cannot Be Trusted... World War 3 Could Be Started By A Falsehood

Notable quotes:
"... Authored by Peter Hitchens via The Mail On Sunday blog, ..."
"... I stood outside the safe house, in a road I cannot name, in a major European city I cannot identify, not sure what I might find inside. I had no way of being sure. ..."
"... In decades of journalism I have received quite a few leaks ..."
"... But I've never seen one like this. It scared me. ..."
"... If bodies such as the OPCW cannot be trusted, then World War Three could one day be started by a falsehood. ..."
Dec 02, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Peter Hitchens via The Mail On Sunday blog,

I stood outside the safe house, in a road I cannot name, in a major European city I cannot identify, not sure what I might find inside. I had no way of being sure.

I had travelled a long distance by train to an address I had been given over an encrypted email.

I was nervous that the meeting might be some sort of trap. Leaks from inside arms verification organisations are very sensitive matters. Powerful people mind about them.

I wasn't sure whether to be afraid of being followed, or to be worried about who might be waiting behind the anonymous door on a dark afternoon, far from home. I took all the amateurish precautions that I could think of.

As it happened, it was not a trap. Now, on carefully selected neutral ground, I was to meet a person who would confirm suspicions that had been growing in my mind over several years – that there is something rotten in the way that chemical weapons inspections are being conducted and reported. And that the world could be hurried into war on the basis of such inspections.

Inside the safe house, I was greeted by a serious, patient expert, a non-political scientist whose priority had until now always been to do the hard, gritty work of verification – travelling to the scenes of alleged horrors, sifting and searching for hard evidence of what had really happened. But this entirely honourable occupation had slowly turned sour.

The whiff of political interference had begun as a faint unpleasant smell in the air and grown until it was an intolerable stench. Formerly easy-going superiors had turned into tricky bureaucrats.

The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) had become so important that it could no longer be allowed to do its job properly.

Too many of the big powers that sponsor and finance it were breathing down its neck, wanting certain results, whether the facts justified them or not.

My source calmly showed me various pieces of evidence that they were who they said they were, and knew what they claimed to know, making it clear that they worked for the OPCW and knew its inner workings. They then revealed a document to me.

This was the email of protest, sent to senior OPCW officials, saying that a report on the alleged Syrian poison gas attack in Douma, in April 2018, had been savagely censored so as to alter its meaning.

In decades of journalism I have received quite a few leaks : leaks over luxurious, expensive lunches with Cabinet Ministers, anonymous leaks that just turned up in envelopes, leaks from union officials and employers, diplomats and academics.

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But I've never seen one like this. It scared me. If it was true, then something hugely dishonest and dangerous was going on, in a place where absolute integrity was vital.

If bodies such as the OPCW cannot be trusted, then World War Three could one day be started by a falsehood.

Last week I reported on the first episode in this story. Within days the OPCW had confirmed that the email I leaked was authentic.

Nobody followed me home or threatened me. A few silly people on social media told blatant lies about me, insinuating that I was somehow a Russian patsy or a defender of the disgusting Syrian regime that I have been attacking in print for nearly 20 years. That was what I had expected.

But there is much more to come. And, as it grows harder for everyone to ignore this enormous, dangerous story, I suspect I shall be looking over my shoulder rather more than usual.

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[Dec 02, 2019] Ghouta is Arabic for Reichstag Fire by Publius Tacitus

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... The White Helmets' leadership is driven by a pro-interventionist agenda conceived by the Western governments and public relations groups that back them. Anyone who visits the group's website -- which is operated by an opposition-funded PR company known as the Syria Campaign -- will be immediately directed to a request to sign a petition for a no-fly zone to "stop the bombs" in Syria. These sorts of communiques highlight the dual role the White Helmets play as a civil defense organization saving lives while lobbying for a US military campaign that will almost inevitably result in the collapse of Syria's government. ..."
"... While members of the White Helmets have been implicated in atrocities carried out by jihadist rebel groups, the names of many of the firms that supposedly monitor and evaluate their work have been kept secret by USAID on unspecified security grounds. ..."
"... That "Russia will "never be America's friend" is not disputed. What is missing is that "US and Russia cannot afford to be enemies". Nixon understood all of that 30 years ago. ..."
"... I agree that the uncritical and unwavering acceptance of the notion of Assad's chemical attacks on his people is ignorant and dangerous. It shows a true lack of imagination among the jihadis and their supporters. Not one of these attacks have been convincingly attributed to Assad's forces. To the contrary, the propaganda put out by the jihadis appears blatantly staged and bogus. The sooner we're out of Syria, the better. And the sooner Trump realizes unwavering support of the current Israeli regime is a cost center, the better. ..."
Apr 09, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

The dominant propaganda meme of the day, as already noted by Colonel Lang, is that Bashar al Assad unleashed chemical weapons on "innocent women and children" in rebel held territory and that Russia and Iran, along with Syria, are responsible. We MUST take action (or so we are told emphatically by morons pretending to be news anchors on the various cable outlets). Few media outlets are willing to report that this information is not only uncorroborated but originates with established liars and rebel partisans--i .e., the White Helmets. Oh, and did you know that the White Helmets are funded largely by the Governments of the UK and the United States?

It is critical to keep the source of funds in mind if you are to understand the true nature of these Islamic scam artists. Ironically, Max Blumenthal, son of the infamous Sid, has been a leader in exposing these fraudsters. Blumenthal wrote, more than three years ago, that :

The White Helmets' leadership is driven by a pro-interventionist agenda conceived by the Western governments and public relations groups that back them. Anyone who visits the group's website -- which is operated by an opposition-funded PR company known as the Syria Campaign -- will be immediately directed to a request to sign a petition for a no-fly zone to "stop the bombs" in Syria. These sorts of communiques highlight the dual role the White Helmets play as a civil defense organization saving lives while lobbying for a US military campaign that will almost inevitably result in the collapse of Syria's government. . . .

The White Helmets were founded in collaboration with USAID's Office of Transitional Initiatives -- the wing that has promoted regime change around the world -- and have been provided with $23 million in funding from the department. USAID supplies the White Helmets through Chemonics, a for-profit contractor based in Washington DC that has become notorious for wasteful aid imbroglios from Haiti to Afghanistan.

While members of the White Helmets have been implicated in atrocities carried out by jihadist rebel groups, the names of many of the firms that supposedly monitor and evaluate their work have been kept secret by USAID on unspecified security grounds.


Anna , 12 hours ago

Nikki Haley: "Russia will "never be America's friend." Moscow can try to behave "like a regular country," but the US will "slap them when we need to," Haley said." ... "Everybody likes to listen to the words. I'm going to tell you – look at the actions," Haley urged. "We expelled 60 Russian diplomats/spies, we have armed Ukraine so that they can defend themselves..." https://www.rt.com/usa/423422-us-russia-stalemate-haley/

The UK has the pottery-boy Gavin Williamson as a Sec. of Defence and the US has a waste-management Nikki Haley as an US envoy to the United Nations. They both are ignoramuses and the eager ziocon tools.

Again, Israel's special relationships with anti-Assad forces and Israel's refusal to ratify the Chemical Arms Treaty make Israel the major suspect in the chemical attacks in Syria: https://www.haaretz.com/.premium-russia-links-syria-chemwar-to-israel-1.5333503

Babak Makkinejad Anna , 6 hours ago
That "Russia will "never be America's friend" is not disputed. What is missing is that "US and Russia cannot afford to be enemies". Nixon understood all of that 30 years ago.
Anna , a day ago
Yes. Has not Israel given orders? - https://www.fort-russ.com/2018/04/urgent-syria-under-attack/
Sid Finster , 2 hours ago
Sociopaths care nothing for logic or morality of they stabs in the way of something they want. Like the Reichstag fire.

I don't understand why people refuse to see that we are run by sociopaths, or, at a minimum, by people indistinguishable from sociopaths.

Kooshy , 9 hours ago
I think Colonel is absolutely right, all signs are, that everybody on both sides are getting ready for a war, how big, and who will participate, nobody knows yet would it be 2 oceans and 3 continents war or just concentrated on Eurasia? Unfortunately, I think DJT' canoe has sunken in the swamp he said he will drain, or IMO he didn't even know what he is talking about, or is dealing with.
TTG , 9 hours ago
I agree that the uncritical and unwavering acceptance of the notion of Assad's chemical attacks on his people is ignorant and dangerous. It shows a true lack of imagination among the jihadis and their supporters. Not one of these attacks have been convincingly attributed to Assad's forces. To the contrary, the propaganda put out by the jihadis appears blatantly staged and bogus. The sooner we're out of Syria, the better. And the sooner Trump realizes unwavering support of the current Israeli regime is a cost center, the better.
Terry , 11 hours ago
Thank you for reopening comments. I missed my tribe of non-conformists thinkers and all the various viewpoints. :-)

The insanity and distortion of reality and facts is getting extreme. Unfortunately tribalism with it's baggage of historical grievances, partisan loyalties, and mob mentalities are growing as our society returns to default human social behaviour while loyalty to the binding myths and ideas of the constitution and the founding of our republic fade. Truth is a casualty. Facts don't matter. Conformity to whatever tribal identity selected is the norm. Science show that there is a real decline in the higher brain functions when mobs form.

A good article on our decline into tribalism -

https://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/09/can-democracy-survive-tribalism.html

SmoothieX12 , 11 hours ago
If the Russians don't respond in some discrete but substantive way, their presence, efforts and international prestige will have vanished by tomorrow morning.

Your "grasp" of air-defense issues, including suggestion of shooting down aircraft in Lebanon's (international) airspace, among many other things clearly shows an armchair "strategist" (no offense, I am one myself) who played, unlike me--I don't play video games, too much video-games and thinks that he knows better than say Russian General Staff. Indeed, what do they know, really--what a bunch of amateurs who do not follow your highly professional suggestion.

robt willmann , 12 hours ago
The Russian Defense Ministry is now saying that 8 missiles were fired at the Syrian T4 airfield and airbase from Israeli airplanes flying inside Lebanon. The report says that 5 of the missiles were knocked down by antiaircraft / missile defense systems and that 3 of them hit the area of the airfield--

https://apnews.com/d965ed6a364f46fd9888acb9001de501/Israel-blamed-for-missile-strike-in-Syria;-14-reported-dead

https://www.rt.com/news/423545-israel-planes-syria-strike/

Anna , 12 hours ago
Agree.
The theater of absurd: Israelis "are shooting with live ammunition at people without guns:" Play Hide
james , 18 hours ago
israel to the rescue... they have to protect isis! and where would they be without regular support from the usa / uk.... white helmets are a pale imitation of israel at this point..
Hood Canal Gardner , 20 hours ago
PT .. thanks for the "outing" of Chemonics .. add Pakistan/HCG got a brick through his Islamabad bedroom window in the early1990s..tucked tail.

"Chemonics, a for-profit contractor based in Washington DC that has become notorious for wasteful aid imbroglios from Haiti to Afghanistan."

Karl Kolchak , 20 hours ago
"...a large number of supposedly intelligent Republicans and Democrats..."

There's no such thing any more. Both parties chased their intelligent leaders out a long time ago. Indeed, this is a repeat of the Cuban Missile Crisis with a bunch of emotional ten-year-olds in charge.

Kathy , 20 hours ago
Slightly OT, but in poking around the SCL/Cambridge Analytica web of intrigue, I found this tantalizing Wikipedia account of Vincent Tchenguiz, the largest shareholder in CA. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vincent_Tchenguiz

Some people are truly not fit to walk on this earth.

blue peacock , 20 hours ago
PT

This is getting more and more ridiculous. From the ludicrous novichok caper that May and Boris have made into a Monty Python skit to the yet another theatrical chemical attack performance starring the perennial Syrian villain, Animal Assad and the increasingly heated rhetoric emanating from DC, London, Beijing and Moscow. Of course with all the bugles and trumpets blowing from the hysterical media with the Borg agenda trying to cajole a highly skeptical public.

What do you make of all this? Is the Borg getting really desperate that their gig may be up? That their deceit and duplicity will be uncovered.

We have Brennan, Holder, Yates busy tweeting along with Trump. There is McCabe and his GoFundMe. We have Comey's book tour and even Loretta Lynch is to hit the airwaves. All to spin tales that less people believe unless of course you are a card carrying partisan. Then there is Sessions making announcements of US Attorneys investigating and possibly convening grand juries and supervising document production to Congress around the conspiracy at the highest levels of law enforcement & intelligence in the Obama administration. Is this Reality TV at it's best putting Jerry Springer to shame??

What does your spidy sense tell you?

wisedupearly Ceo , 21 hours ago
I trust the Pentagon warned Israel not to launch cruise missiles from their submarines close to US surface fleet units.
Anna , 21 hours ago
"If the Russians don't respond... their international prestige will have vanished..."
-- What are you implying -- that only deception, perfidy, and bullying deserve "prestige?" Would not it be great if the decent people have finally explained the "prestigious" Nikki Haley that she is an ignoramus and warmonger? And how about sending Gavin Williamson to his familiar proper place where he could resume selling the fine pottery and ceramic countertops instead of being a mockery to his current post of Sec of Defence?

What is so prestigious about the opportunistic Theresa May and Boris Johnson, whose incompetent actions have been highly damaging to the UK reputation? And guess that the criminal (but very pious) Tony Blair fits the definition of "prestige."

There are people whose response is indeed important from the perspective of decency and competence and patriotism – these people are the US brass in the highest echelons of the US military. Do they serve the interests of the US or the interests of Israel? The question is very simple. The answer is yes or no.

Saker asks for patience: http://thesaker.is/missile-strikes-on-syria-tonight-do-not-rush-to-conclusions-please-post-here-what-you-hear/
Comment section: "The Lord Has Risen, and the forces of evil are rabid for more Death and Destruction."

Peter in Toronto , a day ago
Salvos underway.

If the Russians don't respond in some discrete but substantive way, their presence, efforts and international prestige will have vanished by tomorrow morning.

The Beaver , a day ago
T4 -East Homs being hit . Looks like the ISRAELIS are sending missiles
Anna , a day ago
"His master's voice (or how an obedient dog goes to war)": http://thesaker.is/his-masters-voice-or-how-an-obedient-dog-goes-to-war/
"Israeli officials: the "U.S. must strike in Syria" because "Assad is the angel of death, and the world would be better without him."
Ziomedia is willing to report the Skripal nonsense with a straight face After all, if the Russians could use "Novichok and buckwheat" in the UK, why would they not use chemical weapons in Syria? And, no, the fact that neither the Russians nor the Syrians actually have any chemical weapons (both were fully disarmed and certified as such) makes absolutely no difference! "
And what country does not want to declare her chemical weapon? – http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/175032
"The head of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) on Tuesday called on Israel to renounce chemical weapons and join the convention banning them just like Syria did."
Not In Istanbul , a day ago
Cruise missile strikes are currently underway...
Anna , a day ago
"...Owen Matthews' article at The Spectator betrays the kind of factual sloppiness that is typical of the pundit-political-business classes in the West today."
-- In this case it is more than sloppiness: Owen Matthews is an opportunist loaded with the tribal grievances against Russia:
http://www.greanvillepost.com/2017/11/02/re-visiting-russian-counter-propaganda-methods/
"... in his book "Stalin's Children" Matthews clearly takes sides with, endorses and, possibly, even covers up for his Trotskyist Commissar grandfather and that makes him a fair target for criticism"
jjc , a day ago
The constant repetitive referral to "Obama's red line" has been effective in shaping a preferred response to these alleged attacks. Contrary to today's conventional wisdom, Obama did not "fail" to enforce his own line - the administration through its own State Department was quite prepared to rain bombs down on Damascus, but faced political opposition from Congress (as did Cameron's UK government fail to achieve support for the bombing in its Parliament). Congressional opposition was sparked by robust opposition from citizens/ constituents in the form of communications directed to their Congressional offices. This was all reported by the mainstream media at the time, yet a false recounting is predominant today. The "unrelenting information operation" is not possible without the witting collaboration of the supposed "free" media. The ownership and editorial staff of such are as fully responsible for this frightening state of affairs as anyone else.
blowback , a day ago
The SOHR has some pretty solid reporting on what is going on in Douma. They make no mention of any use of chemical weapons in Douma, but instead attribute the deaths to suffocation resulting from the destruction of cellars containing civilians:
And with the death of more citizens, it has increased to 96 at least including 27 children and 16 woman, the number of persons who have been killed since Friday, and the death toll is expected to rise because there are some people in critical situation, where reliable sources confirmed to the Syrian Observatory that some of the casualties and wounded suffocated as a result of the demolition of home basements due to the heavy and intense shelling on Douma city, and the trusted sources confirmed to the Syrian Observatory of Rights that the number of injuries today has exceeds 500, including tens of children and tens of women, where more than 70 of them have suffered suffocation as a result of the demolition of home basements over them due to the heavy and intense shelling on the last area beyond the regime forces' control in the Eastern Ghouta , which is the stronghold of Jaysh al-Islam, and the Syrian Observatory published hours ago that 11 people at least including 5 children had suffocated, after bombardment by a warplane on an area near the old cemetery at the northern outskirts of Douma city in the Eastern Ghouta, also the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights published that violent clashes taking place between the regime forces and their allied militiamen of Syrian and non-Syrian nationalities against Jaish Al-Islam in areas in the vicinity of Douma area, where the regime forces continue their attempts to achieve more advancement in the area after they managed today morning to advance in the farms of Douma from the direction of Al-Raihan area. The regime forces managed to advance in 50 farms in the area following series of ongoing ground and aerial shelling of the regime forces and their warplanes and helicopters, which target the city and its vicinity.


http://www.syriahr.com/en/?p=88817
Recent articles from SOHR can be found here:
http://www.syriahr.com/en/?cat=26&paged=2
and here:
http://www.syriahr.com/en/?cat=26

Jaish al-Islam asked for quarter as the SAA appears to have broken Jaish al-Islam's defensive lines making their position in Douma untenable.

Imagine , a day ago
"Murder in the Sun Morgue" by Dr. Denis O'Brien (neuropharmacology expert):

"The primary conclusion of this study, based on a pharmacological analysis of the video and photographic evidence, is that the Ghouta Massacre near Damascus on Aug 21.2013 was not a sarin rocket attack carried out by Assad or his supporters. It was a false-flag stunt carried out by the insurgents using carbon monoxide or cyanide to murder children and use their corpses as bait to lure the Americans into attacking Assad."

288 pp. analysis. Also, some had slit throats:
https://www.scribd.com/document/230748990/Murder-in-the-SunMorgue

Swamp Yankee , a day ago
Thank you for this, Publius Tacitus -- and to you, Colonel Lang, re-opening the comments section here at SST.

I think it's notable that Owen Matthews' article at The Spectator betrays the kind of factual sloppiness that is typical of the pundit-political-business classes in the West today. For of course, "Arsenal of Democracy" is a phrase associated not with Truman but with Franklin Roosevelt.

I was the working-class scholarship kid at one of the elite educational institutions that forms a feeder-conduit to these echelons of media, political, and economic power, and one thing I have remarked is the utter mediocrity and laziness of so many members of our ruling class. As Corey Robin found out when he had an exchange with Chelsea Clinton over Hannah Arendt, and I discovered as an undergrad and in grad school, many of them simply never did the reading. They relied then, and still do today, on group-think and sheep-like intellectual conformity, which, of course, is then magnificently (and munificently!) rewarded. I also discovered that even when they did read something, it made no impression on them, not in any real way, they failed to keep the lessons taught thereby in their head once it was no longer needed for an exam or a paper.

To be led by fools such as these into a world war -- and why? -- is lunacy. That's why I'm grateful for places like this Committee to keep the home-fires of sanity burning. Thanks again, and let's hope that peace prevails, against the devoutly-hoped wishes of the Borg.

Patrick Armstrong , 10 hours ago
An excellent summary, I posted it on FB and VK.

[Nov 30, 2019] OPCW Manipulation Of Its Douma Report Requires A Fresh Look At The Skripal 'Novichok' Case: were they actually poisoned with BZ as the initial stage of a false flag operation by British intelligence

Notable quotes:
"... Thank you b for this revision of the Skripal hoax. The find of pure Novichok was the fatal flaw from the very beginning. The UK is never to be trusted and inept to boot. ..."
"... "only a small amount of BZ is needed to produce complete incapacitation" ..."
"... Also holds for Novichok: Andrei Zheleznyakov, who had been exposed to a minute amount of Novichok in a lab accident five years prior wrote he was, "seared by brilliant colors and hallucinations." Many other sources mention foaming at the mouth, hallucinations and pinpoint pupils. ..."
"... And Litvinenko. The man who prepared the crucial MI6 secret presentation to the chairman of the public inquiry was a colleague of Pablo Miller, the agent runner of Skripal. His name, Christopher Steele. A man the foreign office told the FBI is not reliable!!! ..."
"... UN is owned by west will not pursue war crimes. Responsible parties should no longer lend it legitemacy. ..."
Nov 30, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

With regards to the revelations about the OPCW management manipulation of its staff reports the former UN weapon inspector Scott Ritter makes a very valid point :
Thanks to an explosive internal memo, there is no reason to believe the claims put forward by the Syrian opposition that President Bashar al-Assad's government used chemical weapons against innocent civilians in Douma back in April. This is a scenario I have questioned from the beginning. It also calls into question all the other conclusions and reports by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) , which was assigned in 2014 "to establish facts surrounding allegations of the use of toxic chemicals, reportedly chlorine, for hostile purposes in the Syrian Arab Republic."

Besides its activities around dubious 'chemical' incident in Syria there is another rather famous case in which the OPCW got involved: The alleged 'Novichok' attack on Sergei and Julia Scripal in Salisbury, Britain.

We discussed the OPCW involvement in the Skirpal case in our April 15 2018 report: Were the Skripals 'Buzzed', 'Novi-shocked' Or Neither?

The Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation, Sergey Lavrov, threw a bombshell at the British assertions that the collapse of the British secret agent Sergej Skripal and his daughter Yulia on March 4 in Salisbury was caused by a 'Novichok' nerve agent 'of a type developed by Russia'. (See our older pieces, linked below, for a detailed documentation of the case.)

During a public speech yesterday Lavrov stated of the OPCW report:

[A] detailed and fairly substantial confidential version was distributed to the OPCW members only. In that report, in accordance with the OPCW way of conduct, the chemical composition of the agent presented by the British was confirmed, and the analysis of samples, as the report states, was taken by the OPCW experts themselves. It contains no names, Novichok or any other. The report only gives the chemical formula, which, according to our experts, points to an agent that had been developed in many countries and does not present any particular secret.

After receiving that report Russia was tipped off by the Spiez Laboratory or someone else that the OPCW report did not include the full results of its analysis.

According to Lavrov this is what the Spiez Laboratory originally sent to the OPCW:

"Following our analysis, the samples indicate traces of the toxic chemical BZ and its precursor which are second category chemical weapons. BZ is a nerve toxic agent, which temporarily disables a person. The psycho toxic effect is achieved within 30 to 60 minutes after its use and lasts for up to four days. This composition was in operational service in the armies of the US, the UK and other NATO countries. The Soviet Union and Russia neither designed nor stored such chemical agents. Also, the samples indicate the presence of type A-234 nerve agent in its virgin state and also products of its degradation."

The "presence of type A-234 nerve agent", an agent of the so called 'Novichok' series, in its "virgin state", or as the OPCW stated in "high purity", points to later addition to the sample. The 'Novichok' agents are not stable. They tend to fall rapidly apart. Their presence in "virgin state" in a sample which was taken 15 days after the Skripal incident happened is inexplicable. A scientist of the former Russian chemical weapon program who worked with similar agents, Leonid Rink, says that if the Skripals had really been exposed to such high purity A-234 nerve agent, they would be dead.

The whole case, the symptoms shown by the Skripals and their recuperation, makes way more sense if they were 'buzzed', i.e. poisoned with the BZ hallucinogenic agent, than if they were 'novi-shocked' with a highly toxic nerve agent.

The OPCW had send blood samples from the Skripals to the Spiez laboratory in Switzerland which found BZ, a psycho agent 25 times stronger than LSD. The OPCW hid this fact in its reports.

An attack with BZ on the Skripals would be consistent with the observed symptoms that bystanders had described. The Skripals were indeed hallucinating and behaved very strange with Sergei Skipal lifting his arms up to the sky while sitting on a bench. Exposure to BZ would also explain the Skripals' survival.

The OPCW explained the BZ find by claiming that it had mixed BZ into the probe to test the laboratory. Something which it said it regularly does. At that time I still believed in the OPCW and found that explanation reasonable :

The OPCW responded to Russian question about the BZ and high rate of A-234 in the Spiez Laboratory probe and report.

OPCW said today that it was a control probe to test the laboratory. Such probes are regularly slipped under the real probes to make sure that the laboratories the OPCW uses are able to do their job and do not manipulate their results.

That explanation is reasonable.

I guess we can close the BZ theories and go back to food poisoning as the most likely cause of the Skripals' illness.

In light of the OPCW management manipulation or suppression of the reports of its own specialists for the purpose of attributing the Douma incident to the Syrian government I have to change my opinion. I hereby retract my earlier acceptance of the OPCW's explanation in the Skripal case.

As we now know that the OPCW management manipulates reports at will we can no longer accept the 'control probe' excuse without further explanations or evidence.

Here is what seems to have happened.

The OPCW did not send a control sample to Spiez to test the laboratory. It sent the original samples from the Skripals. Spiez found BZ and reported that back to the OPCW. The OPCW suppressed the Spiez results in its own reports. Somehow Russia got wind of the Spiez results and exposed the manipulation.

Acceptance that the Skripals had been 'buzzed', not 'novi-shocked' is central to the Skripal case. It makes the whole Skripal case as a British operation to prevent the repatriation of Sergei Skripal to Russia much more plausible.

Posted by b on November 30, 2019 at 19:34 UTC | Permalink


vk , Nov 30 2019 19:46 utc | 1

By the writings from the Wehrmacht soldiers we have today, we can see that it was not Nazi ideology per se which convinced them to invade the Soviet Union, but the nine consecutive years of extremely virulent anti-Russian propaganda spread in Germany during the 1930s (plus the myth Bolshevik conspiracy caused 1918).

The West is preparing its population psychologically to go to war against Eurasia -- Russia + China. They are appealing to irrational propaganda to achieve so: painting the picture of "Russian deceitulness" (this plus the WADA propaganda warfare) and of "Chinese asiatic despostism" and "Chinese exotism". They are planning for the long term -- maybe even 20 to 30 years of consecutive brainwashing of their own population so they can cultivate unconditional hatred for the Eurasians.

If true, then this option also indicates the Western elites are anticipating their own decline or even a collapse. If Gramsci's theory on the rise of fascism holds true, then expect the rise of an Anglo-Saxon version of fascism.

Symen Danziger , Nov 30 2019 19:47 utc | 2

At MoA you get a 100% pure dose of honest reporting and fact finding! Thanks b.
uncle tungsten , Nov 30 2019 19:51 utc | 3
Thank you b for this revision of the Skripal hoax. The find of pure Novichok was the fatal flaw from the very beginning. The UK is never to be trusted and inept to boot.
james , Nov 30 2019 20:19 utc | 4
b - thanks for reconsidering this Skripal case in light of the OPSW scandal that is being kept under wraps.. This is another phony edifice erected by the west to create what @1 vk articulates - an anglo-saxon version of fascism towards eurasia..

the whole skripal affair is now standing on even more shaky ground..

Clueless Joe , Nov 30 2019 20:19 utc | 5
Spiez lab and its staff might not have as much reason to frame Russia or Syria for that kind of stuff, not being part of NATO despite being in a Western capitalist country.

It's quite possible that the bulk of the staff has no horses in that game and wants to just do the job - and it's very possible that one or two people there are pissed off enough to blow the whistle on one part of the ongoing fakeries.

After all, this occurred to people whose countries were heavily involved in such shenanigans (Scott Ritter, Craig Murray and Edward Snowden being good examples), and most probably also happened with the Douma report. Basically, it will be interesting to see if there's any whistleblowing about the Skripal analyses in the near future.

Beibdnn , Nov 30 2019 20:28 utc | 6
@vk in 20 to 30 years the East will have risen. All this propaganda will be for nothing. With the systems of mass communication and much greater lack of trust in authority and the MSM, these attempts to paint Russia and China in a bad light won't be as effective as is hoped. The western govts. and elites are hurting themselves far more than any war can hurt the new powers arising. I read somewhere, ( I apologise that I cannot find the article ), that the U.S. is planning a limited yield tactical nuclear weapon attack delivered by stealth bomber on Iran. I don't know if this is in any way true. However Ultimately Chess and the Chinese game of Go require far more sophisticated thinking than checkers or poker. The west is very predictable in it's thinking and the East is advancing faster than the west can sucessfully react.

@uncle tungsten. The U.K. authorities And management are incompetent and not to be trusted. Not so the scientists, engineers and others in the employ of the civil service.

psychohistorian , Nov 30 2019 20:51 utc | 7
Thanks for the Novichok/OPCW follow up b

It does makes sense that the Skripal's were buzzed as you write and that it is more propaganda falling apart. This time it is propaganda that was focused on Russia and I am glad to read that Lavrov is making the findings of the cover up more public. One can only hope that more threads of propaganda come unraveled and the putrid house of cards built to cover up the global private finance controlled Western society falls apart soon. At what point are there prosecutions for this sort of "war crimes" against countries?

WJ , Nov 30 2019 21:00 utc | 8
And this leads to further questions:

1. Why did Skripal desire to repatriate in so hidden a manner?

2. Why did the U.K. pull out all the stops to prevent him from exiting the country? What did they fear about his repatriation?

I think both questions lead us back to the Steele dossier.

RJPJR , Nov 30 2019 21:04 utc | 9
Clueless Joe @ 5 wrote: "Spiez lab and its staff might not have as much reason to frame Russia or Syria for that kind of stuff, not being part of NATO despite being in a Western capitalist country."

Actually, the Spiez lab is directly linked to NATO, as is Switzerland, through the smoke screen of the "Peace Partnership" ("Partenariat pour la paix" in its official French version).

It already go into big trouble once, quite a while ago, for being used by NATO to whitewash United States use of uranium/depleted uranium weapons. That, apparently, went down badly with most of the staff, so, if they are on the up-and-up, one might attribute it to: once burned, twice shy.

Canthama , Nov 30 2019 21:24 utc | 10
Nailed in the head. All and every work from @OPCW should be deeply investigated, it has, clearly, shown to be a corrupt organization, would like to see its leaders and key investigators involved in those many crimes arrested and in jail.
bevin , Nov 30 2019 21:26 utc | 11
Let us not confuse "The British" with an extreme right wing Tory faction, of which Johnson is the public face, which, as reports coming out today remind us, has been enormously financed by Russian kleptocrats.

It is this report chronicling the influence of these oligarchs in funding the Tory party (hundreds of millions of dollars were raised) which was suppressed when it was due to be released on the eve of the current general election.

The point is that it is this alliance between ultra right Tories, controlling the party through their secret financing, and anti-Putin oligarchs of the Khodorkovsy, Browder type, which has been behind the waves of russophobic propaganda and provocations of which Skripal is but one, particularly flagrant instance.
This is the wing of the Tory party eighty years on, which was ready to sign a peace agreement with Germany in May 1940. The terms of which would have preserved their power and the empire and allied the UK with Germany in the attack on the Soviet Union.
Not to put too fine a point on it- the current leadership of the Tory party under Johnson are crypto fascists.

james , Nov 30 2019 21:31 utc | 12
@ 7 psychohistorian.. that quote from b - "During a public speech yesterday Lavrov stated of the OPCW report" is actually from april 2018... it would be very good if lavrov actually did an update here given the latest info we now know have on the opcw process...
james , Nov 30 2019 21:32 utc | 13
fascinating comments bevin.. thanks..
S.O. , Nov 30 2019 21:33 utc | 14
As I said at the time, the OPCW has become a political weapon subject to the whims of the UK and US's foreign policy. (thus the formation of a new attribution initiative body given the power to blame to whoever the UK and US wants).

ANYTHING coming from the technical secretariat (in particular whilst under Robert Fairweather) should be considered compromised.

The only thing with any remaining credibility at all are the direct field reports and the individual lab reports, both of which are considered confidential to the secretariat.

John Dowser , Nov 30 2019 21:34 utc | 15
1. "It sent the original samples from the Skripals."

No, because that doesn't explain the A-234 found by the lab. They were then not original following the suggested theory. We have to choose between "adding BZ as test" or "adding A-234 to deceive".

Checking some OPCW docs like "OPCW on-site and off-site analysis of samples" mention one authentic sample combined with one control sample containing scheduled chemicals & one blank sample containing no scheduled chemicals. It also makes sense to have control substances to exclude grave errors or manipulation. In other words the explanation makes sense. If not BZ then another scheduled chemical would have been there. Not named by Lavrov for some reason? The simplest solution here remains that Lavrov was blowing smoke or a rare misfire.

2. From MoA's earlier article, quoting Science Direct

"only a small amount of BZ is needed to produce complete incapacitation"

This would conflict with "lifting his arms up to the sky while sitting on a bench". That's not complete at all.

3. "consistent with the observed symptoms "

Also holds for Novichok: Andrei Zheleznyakov, who had been exposed to a minute amount of Novichok in a lab accident five years prior wrote he was, "seared by brilliant colors and hallucinations." Many other sources mention foaming at the mouth, hallucinations and pinpoint pupils.

As for the timing, don't confuse "pure" drops with emulsions, the very reason Novichok was being weaponized as it could be kept active and applied through gel and other more static forms. Clearly exposure rate would differ based on application method and its success. Delays could easily occur when it needs to travel eg through skin.

M droy , Nov 30 2019 21:38 utc | 16
And Litvinenko. The man who prepared the crucial MI6 secret presentation to the chairman of the public inquiry was a colleague of Pablo Miller, the agent runner of Skripal. His name, Christopher Steele. A man the foreign office told the FBI is not reliable!!!
bevin , Nov 30 2019 21:41 utc | 17
@13 James
I should have added that the oligarchs involved are the Fifth Columnist 'westernisers" whose objection to Putin is that he is orientated towards Eurasia whereas they see their allies as Wall St and The City, which is where their ill gotten gains are.

In other words this is not about Russophobia so much as a last ditch stand for the maritime empire in which they are literally invested heavily. It goes without saying-or should do -- which middle eastern Apartheid state is also allied with the anti-Putin oligarchs. Which is why Vladimir, who knows what its all about, does everything he can, verbally, to demonstrate his solidarity with the afore unmentioned Apartheid regime.

jared , Nov 30 2019 21:49 utc | 18
Yeah so are they lying only to the public or to the government as well?

In the one case they are negligent and
In the second they are treasonous.

psychohistorian , Nov 30 2019 21:49 utc | 19
@ james #12 with the correction to my claim about the timing of the Lavrov statement...thanks.

@ bevin # 11 who writes that the British Tory party is a tool of Russian oligarchs...any documentation of that?

And writing about British Tory obfuscation, I am struggling with reading Web of Debt that keeps talking about Bank of England when I know it got nationalized in 1946 but where is the documentation about if/how the City of London Corp still has control behind the scenes? Or don't they? Your Tory claim seems like it should be about the City of London Corp folks but I have no data to back it up.

jared , Nov 30 2019 21:57 utc | 20
UN is owned by west will not pursue war crimes. Responsible parties should no longer lend it legitemacy.

[Nov 30, 2019] OPCW Manufactured A Pretext For War By Suppressing Its Own Scientists' Research

Nov 29, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org
OPCW Manufactured A Pretext For War By Suppressing Its Own Scientists' Research

Leaks from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) provide that the OPCW management ignored or manipulated reports its Fact Finding Mission had written about the April 2018 Douma incident in Syria.

The history of the Douma incident and the OPCW and media manipulation around it is available from the Working Group on Syria, Propaganda and Media under the headline: How the OPCW's investigation of the Douma incident was nobbled . Our own post around the incident are linked below.

The OPCW management ignored that the technical, chemical and medical analysis of its own specialists exculpated the Syrian government from the allegation that it poisoned some 40 people in Douma by dropping Chlorine canisters from a helicopter.

The OPCW scientific staff found that dropping the canisters could not have created the damage that was found. Those canisters must have been placed by hand. The amount of chlorinated organic chemicals found at the two scenes was very low and it is very unlikely that they are the result of a reaction with chlorine gas. The medical symptoms of the casualties as was seen in various videos at the time of the incident were inconsistent with death by chlorine inhalation.


bigger

The OPCW management twisted the interim and the final OPCW report on the incident to make it look as if the Syrian government was guilty of dropping chlorine canisters. The detailed internal technical analysis was ignored. It was replaced by external analysis from unknown sources who claimed the opposite of what the OPCW engineers and chemists had found. The wording of the report suggests that high level of chlorinated organic chemicals were found without giving the very low concentrations (in parts per billions) that were actually found. The internal medical analysis was eliminated from the official report.

OPCW emails and documents were leaked and whistleblowers came forward to speak with journalists and international lawyers . Veteran journalist Jonathan Steele, who has spoken with the whistleblowers, wrote an excellent piece on the issues. In the Mail on Sunday columnist Peter Hitchens picked up the issue and moved it forward:

New sexed-up dossier furore: Explosive leaked email claims that UN watchdog's report into alleged poison gas attack by Assad was doctored - so was it to justify British and American missile strikes on Syria? .

The 'citizen journalists' of the U.S. government financed Bellingcat propaganda shop made a laughable attempt to refute the claims the whistleblower made. Caitlin Johnstone took it apart .

Hitchens also responded to the Bellingcat scam: Bellingcat or Guard Dog for the Establishment? .

Quoting Bellingcat Peter Hitchens (PH) writes:

Bellingcat:
However, a comparison of the points raised in the letter against the final Douma report makes it amply clear that the OPCW not only addressed these points, but even changed the conclusion of an earlier report to reflect the concerns of said employee.

PH:
Apart from the words 'a', and 'the', everything in the above paragraph is, to put it politely, mistaken. Bellingcat have been so anxious to trash the leak from the OPCW that they have (as many did when the attack was first released) rushed to judgment without waiting for the facts. More is known by the whistleblowers of the OPCW than has yet been released , but verification procedures have slowed down its release. More documents will, I expect, shortly come to light.

One, which I have seen, is very interesting. It is a memorandum of protest, written many months after the e-mail of protest published at the weekend. This was sent to the OPCW Director-General Fernando Arias (there is some doubt about whether it ever reached him) by an OPCW investigator (one of those who actually visited Douma), on 14th March 2019. It has reached me through hitherto reliable sources. This is nearly two weeks *after* the release of the 'final' report (on Friday 1st March 2019) which is supposed to have resolved the doubts of the dissenters.

In his discussion of the issue Hitchens also mentions this blog:

[The OPCW report claim] 'Various chlorinated organic chemicals were found in samples from Locations 2 and 4, along with residues of explosive. These results are reported in Annex 3. Work by the team to establish the significance of these results is ongoing.' resulted in some quite remarkable media reports. These are explored here:

https://www.moonofalabama.org/2018/07/syria-many-media-lie-about-watchdog-report-on-the-chemical-attack-in-douma.html

Bellingcat and its supporters may not like the source, and I do not much like it myself , but it is a unique record, as far as I know, of the initial media response to the issue of the July 6 report. I have in fact checked its claims with Reuters and the BBC and they do not dispute what it says, though they say they later corrected the output.

It is sad, Peter, that you don't like this blog much but I am afraid I can do nothing about it.

A few hours ago Hitchens published another piece: In defense of journalism - 'Citizen journalists' are no such thing . In it he again takes on Bellingcat and other such 'citizen journalist' and 'researchers' to then reveal that he himself now talked to an OPCW whistleblower:

Luckily for me I have had the backing of people who know deep down that journalism must take risks to be any good. Someone had to say 'yes' to me when I headed off at short notice a few days ago, on my complicated way to a safe house somewhere in a major city on the European continent.

Someone had to fork out for my train fares and my cheap station hotels. Someone had to have the guts to let me tell my story about what I found when I got there -- which was an honest man in turmoil. His job was to tell the truth and he was being prevented from doing so. So I could help him. In four decades of journalism, I have seldom felt closer to the Holy Grail, truth that had to be told, and truth that would shake power. Here it was. A pretext for war had been manufactured by suppression of research.

The "pretext for war" can not refer to the missile strike F-UK-US launched on April 16 2018, 8 days after the Douma incident and before any OPCW inspectors had visited the site.

Hitchens must refer to an upcoming war that was supposed to be based on the now disgraced OPCW report.

There is indeed a possible path to war.

The original agreement for OPCW investigations in Syria stipulated that the OPCW would report the results of investigations to a Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM) at the United Nations where the Security Council would then attribute guilt to either side of the conflict. The U.S. tried to use the JIM process to attribute dubious chemical incidents in Syria to the government. Russia vetoed those attempts. The U.S. then decided to circumvent the UN process.

In 2018 the U.S. and its proxies manipulated the OPCW statute and added the task of identifying the guilty party of chemical incidents to the OPCW's agenda:

[The decision] also calls upon the [OPCW] Secretariat to put in place arrangements " to identify the perpetrators of the use of chemical weapons in the Syrian Arab Republic by identifying and reporting on all information potentially relevant to the origin of those chemical weapons in those instances in which the OPCW Fact-Finding Mission determines or has determined that use or likely use occurred, and cases for which the OPCW-UN Joint Investigative Mechanism has not issued a report".

The decision further affirmed that whenever chemical weapons use occurs on the territory of a State Party, "those who were the perpetrators, organisers, sponsors or otherwise involved should be identified" and it underscored "the added value of the Secretariat conducting an independent investigation of an alleged use of chemical weapons with a view to facilitating universal attribution of all chemical weapons attacks".

The manipulated OPCW report, which omitted the OPCW scientists' findings, will now be the basic document which the new OPCW attribution group, the Investigation and Identification Team, will use to find the Syrian government guilty. That guilty verdict can then be used to publicly justify a war on Syria without further UN Security Council interference.

This is what Hitchens means when he writes that "A pretext for war had been manufactured by suppression of research."

Russia, China and several other governments have protested against the change in the OPCW statute. The Russian statement to this years Chemical Weapon Convention (CWC) conference says :

The decision to vest the OPCW Technical Secretariat with functions to identify parties responsible for the use of chemical weapons adopted in June 2018 at the CSP-SS-4 in contradiction of the Convention is illegitimate. This innovation forced on the OPCW goes beyond the scope of the CWC and the Organization, the decision itself was adopted in violation of the Convention, and its implementation is nothing other than an interference with the exclusive competence of the UN Security Council.

As a clearly foreseeable result of this questionable decision, fundamental problems with its realization ensued, namely, the lack of transparency and accountability of the "attribution" mechanism, which is the Investigation and Identification Team, to the OPCW governing bodies. The States Parties have yet to learn about the terms of reference of this entity, its operating conditions, its criteria for selection of "incidents"to investigate or sources and modalities of its financing.

The OPCW scientists found serious evidence that the Syrian government can NOT be guilty of the Douma incident. Under U.S. pressure the OPCW management suppressed its scientists' technical reports or replaced them with those from "external experts" to make it look as if the Syrian government caused the incident. The new attribution group at the OPCW will use that manipulated report to find Syria guilty of causing the incident. The U.S. and others could then use that guilty verdict as pretext to launch a war.

We only learned of this plan because courageous scientists and engineers at the OPCW do not want to see their organization abused to find pretexts to wage wars on the innocent. They came forward and told the public what it needs to know. They deserve our gratitude.

---
Previous Moon of Alabama coverage of the Douma incident and its aftermath:

April 8 2018 - Syria - Timelines Of 'Gas Attacks' Follow A Similar Scheme (Update II) April 9 2018 - Syria - Any U.S. Strike Will Lead to Escalation April 11 2018 - Syria - A U.S. Attack Would Be Futile - But Serve A Purpose - by M. K. Bhadrakumar April 11 2018 - Trump Asks Russia To Roll Over - It Won't April 12 2018 - Syria - Threat Of Large War Recedes But May Come Back April 13 2018 - Syria - Manipulated Videos Fail To Launch World War III - Updated April 14 2018 - F.U.K.U.S. Strikes Syria - Who Won? April 16 2018 - Syria - Pentagon Hides Attack Failure - 70+ Cruise Missiles Shot Down April 19 2018 - Syria - Who Is Stalling The OPCW Investigation In Douma? April 20 2018 - Syria Sitrep - Cleanup Around Damascus - WMD Rumors Prepare For New U.S. Attack July 6 2018 - Syria - OPCW Issues First Report Of 'Chemical Weapon Attack' in Douma July 7 2018 - Syria - Mainstream Media Lie About Watchdog Report On The 'Chemical Attack' In Douma May 13 2019 - Syria - OPCW Engineering Assessment: The Douma 'Chemical Weapon Attack' Was Staged November 16 2019 - OPCW Whistleblowers: Management Manipulated Reports - Douma 'Chemical Weapon Attack' Was Staged

Posted by b on November 29, 2019 at 19:02 UTC | Permalink


Mina , Nov 29 2019 19:29 utc | 1

Macron should take the unique chance of his row today with Erdogan to claim surprise at what has been going on at OPCW under Turkish governance.
Jen , Nov 29 2019 19:35 utc | 2
Oh dear, why does Peter Hitchens dislike Moon of Alabama? Methinks there is some envy behind the dislike, that MoA can find, research and publish real, credible information and news without being subjected to interference, or being able to publish such news only on the condition that one covers puff pieces first or accepts being relegated to the back of the queue of news articles for the day.
annie , Nov 29 2019 19:56 utc | 3
another nail in the coffin
karlof1 , Nov 29 2019 20:04 utc | 4
Thanks, b, and thanks to those with integrity at OPCW! What's missing from this report is the tie-in with BigLie Media's role in the attempt to manufacture a reason for war. Then also there's the entity responsible for changing the OPCW Statute--yes, I know b named the macro-entities, but within them resides one or several individuals who came up with the plan and its verbiage. They need to be outed and removed from whatever government positions they hold ASAP. Another question needing to be asked and answered: What did Trump know about all this and when did he know it? And what was planned to occur if NATO got the "authorization" it tried to manipulate? Did they really desire to destroy themselves by making war on Russia via Syria?!?!

I must also say I'm shocked that anyone at OPCW would think Peter Hitchens a reliable person to confide in. IMO, we really lucked-out.

wagelaborer , Nov 29 2019 20:10 utc | 5
Hitchens may not like this blog because he is jealous of your great journalism, which consistently outshines the imperial media for which he works.
Huggy Bear , Nov 29 2019 20:29 utc | 6
Hitchens loves this blog, he is promoting it.
S.O. , Nov 29 2019 20:33 utc | 7
Remember the individual labs will also have records of the CloC concentrations omitted from the final report and thus represent an additional potential leak source.
DontBelieveEitherPr. , Nov 29 2019 20:35 utc | 8
WOW.
What a Christmas present to you Bernhard. You actually made an impact, that could potentially have prevented a major escalation into open war.
What better gain could there be for your work!

And yes, Hitchens may not like your blog, or may he not dare to say so. What matters is, that Bellingcat and his NATO paymasters must be crying and screaming at you.. Beautiful.

And this development just shows, what can be possible if one would combine true citizen journalism with the resources and reach of MSM. If one could combine the best of both, one could truely shake the corrupted, brainwashed powers that be, and force policy changes on even the most important issues.
A ray of hope.

DontBelieveEitherPr. , Nov 29 2019 20:39 utc | 9
What if forgot: Please Bernhard, take now extra care. Bellingcat will now target you even harder. And the first laughable attempt to dox you (which i watched on Twitter years ago, which was pretty hilariously incompetent, as BC mostly is) will not be the last.
Now you truly got in their way, and they will already plan how to retaliate...
If we can help you, please ask!
ben , Nov 29 2019 20:44 utc | 10
Another brick in the wall of proof, that the power of organised $ almost always conquers truth.

Until that paradigm changes, humanity can not progress.

psychohistorian , Nov 29 2019 20:57 utc | 11
Kudos and thanks to b for his leadership in this failing propaganda effort

Let me repeat ben's comment #10
"
Another brick in the wall of proof, that the power of organised $ almost always conquers truth.

Until that paradigm changes, humanity can not progress.
"

If/when you get into an inter-myth (left/right) discussion with with others I encourage you to stop and ask them whether they support global private finance. I suspect you will find agreement on this issue and will further chip away at the manufactured left/right meme that is a cover for the reality of top/bottom madness that is such a threat to our species evolving.

bevin , Nov 29 2019 20:58 utc | 12
Hitchens has been doing similar things, and getting them published in the Mail, for a while now. It is not unlike the Tucker Carlson phenomenon in the US.
These guys are watching the wheels come off the imperial juggernaut. Perhaps even more significant is the fact that others at these very right wing media sources realise that, to save some of their credibility they have to hedge their bets and allow some of their journalists to practise their profession.
Meanwhile, at the New Yorker (circulation declining rapidly) Seymour Hersh, who was like b one of the first on this story, cannot find room for all the hagiography by the MI6 Press Department.

As to Hitchens' ritualistic disassociation from MoA, who would have it any other way?

cdvision , Nov 29 2019 21:35 utc | 13
This is a war crime, plain and simple, but there will be no justice forthcoming. May the bastards in (primarily) the US and the UK who perpetrated this rot in hell.
snake , Nov 29 2019 21:39 utc | 14
bankers disease and OPCW
james , Nov 29 2019 21:44 utc | 15
kudos to you b.. you do excellent work... peter hitchens knows this too, even if he doesn't have the guts or character to openly admit it.. people speaking truth to power are very hard to find in the media these days...people correctly seek out alternative media, as the msm has become a cesspool..

kudos to the opcw whistleblowers as well..without them, this wouldn't be seeing the light of day.. this con job the usa-uk and ''coalition'' are trying to pull off, rewriting the opcw mandate needs to be confronted..their deception and lies are ongoing... until more in the msm step up to the plate - like peter hitchens, and especially jonathan steele, the msm will continue to be a conveyor of lies and bullshite only... moa is a rare exception in the realm of news, even if it is classified as alternative news..

i hope this path to war they are exploring here has a huge light shined on it.. these so called journalists can all rot in hell if they can't see beyond their paycheck..

Piero Colombo , Nov 29 2019 21:48 utc | 16
Karlof1 @7

"yes, I know b named the macro-entities, but within them resides one or several individuals who came up with the plan and its verbiage. They need to be outed and removed from whatever government positions they hold ASAP."

A bit strange...these several individuals were acting on instructions from their several governments.

Cemi , Nov 29 2019 21:51 utc | 17
To understand how brave these OPCW scientists are in their efforts to save their integrity, just watch how whistleblower Julian Assange is tortured and killed blatantly in the open for everyone to watch. My highest esteem for them, Assange, and also b, who doesn't stop publishing these crimes!
Robert Snefjella , Nov 29 2019 22:06 utc | 18
Here is a key direct war propaganda-quote from the concluding paragraph of the OPCW's so-called ... "evaluation and analysis of all the information gathered":

[The investigations by the OPCW "provide reasonable grounds that the use of a toxic chemical as a weapon took place. This toxic chemical contained reactive chlorine.The toxic chemical was likely molecular chlorine."

This is yet another attempt to energize Obama's 2013 'declaration': that a "red line" would be crossed by use of chemical weapons in Syria. From the Washington Post, 2013: "Because of our concern about the deteriorating situation in Syria, the president has made it clear that the use of chemical weapons -- or transfer of chemical weapons to terrorist groups -- is a red line for the United States of America. The Obama administration has communicated that message publicly and privately to governments around the world, including the Assad regime."

Once the evocative 'red line" terminology had been used, all those who wanted more US military involvement in Syria were motivated to make the red line appear to have been crossed. The presstitute media began to frequently insert and magnify references and accusations re Assad and chemical weapons.

Given that the war waged against Syria has been a war of aggression, with multiple perpetrators, consider some of the defining characteristics of wars of aggression: From Nuremberg:

.. (a) Crimes against peace: Namely, planning, preparation, initiation or waging of a war of aggression or a war in violation of international treaties, agreements or assurances, or participation in a common plan or conspiracy for the accomplishment of any of the foregoing;

.. (b) War crimes: Namely, violations of the laws or customs of war. Such violations shall include, but not be limited to, murder, ill-treatment, or deportation to slave labour or for any other purpose of civilian population of or in occupied territory, murder or ill treatment of prisoners of war or persons on the seas, killing of hostages, plunder of public or private property, wanton destruction of cities, towns, or villages, or devastation not justified by military
necessity ....

Meaningful use above of the word "preparation" and the phrase "participation in a conspiracy" in regards to wars of aggression includes mental/attitudinal preparation. The corrupt managers of the OPCW, too, are thus by definition war criminals. They have much company.

james , Nov 29 2019 22:30 utc | 19
@ cemi... that is very true... thanks for saying that..
karlof1 , Nov 29 2019 22:59 utc | 20
Piero Colombo @16--

Thanks for noting the contradiction in my comment! However, there are times when planners come up with ideas they weren't directed to generate. The question was probably broad: How can we get Obama's Red Line to be seen as crossed by Syria? then the specific mechanism manufactured.

Thanks to Robert Snefjella @18 showing how those planners are genuine War Criminals. Which brings up an interesting question: Is the Federal government that runs the Evil Outlaw US Empire a War Criminal or are specific members of that government War Criminals. Leading to the next question: The governments of Italy, Germany and Japan were completely destroyed, their national constitutions rewritten and new institutions then established as a result of their perpetrating War Crimes: Should the Federal government of the USA likewise be destroyed, a new constitution written followed by the generation of new institutions? And if so, then what of the individual State governments; don't they also share the guilt of their parent the Federal government? How can it be held that the 50 individual states are innocent while the Federal government's guilty? I know that the Nuremburg Principles say it's the duty of all citizens to resist and attempt to thwart/prevent attempted War Crimes, but I don't believe there's a statute in the US Code that addresses those Principles; although, constitutionally IMO those Principles do apply.

Petri Krohn , Nov 29 2019 23:16 utc | 21
TAKE THEM TO THE HAGUE!

Manufacturing a pretext for the U.S. missile strike on Syria in April 2018 is nowhere near the biggest of OPCW's crimes. The OPCW is an accessory , both before and after the fact to the crime of mass murder.

It should now be clear to everyone that Syrian "rebels" gassed thousands of hostages in cellars, most likely with chlorine gas, and then paraded the victims in White Helmets snuff videos. OPCW conspired in this crime in both encouraging the terrorists to more murder and by protecting them afterward by assigning blame to Assad and the Syrian government.

The worst of these massacres happened in Ghouta in August 2013 when 2000 civilian hostages (rebel claim) were gassed to death by rebels and their pre-White Helmets "civil defence". The OPCW was there to cover up the crime and to fabricate evidence to assign blame to Syria.

We have been documenting these crimes and hoaxes at A Closer Look On Syria from December 2012. OPCW was used from the beginning to manufacture consent for war. See for example:

Yeah, Right , Nov 29 2019 23:47 utc | 22
Caitlin Johnstone gives a master-class in snark when she points her readers to Bellingcat's latest apologia.

Queue the money-shot: "Don't worry about giving them clicks; that's not where they get their money."

Comic Gold.

MadMax2 , Nov 29 2019 23:51 utc | 23
As to Hitchens' ritualistic disassociation from MoA, who would have it any other way?

Posted by: bevin

Well said...! Couldn't put it better.

karlof1 , Nov 29 2019 23:52 utc | 24
Petri Krohn @21--

Of course, the OPCW is already there! I highly suggest Caitlin Johnstone's article b linked be read, which can be found here .

We should expand on Petri's number of people involved in this crime to include all the paid disinformation artists noted in Caitlin's essay at minimum. What becomes very clear in all this is the total collusion with OPCW upper level management--those whom the whistleblowers and their allies within OPCW petitioned--in these crimes as Petri contends. Until they are visibly replaced, nothing issued by OPCW has any credence.

uncle tungsten , Nov 30 2019 0:13 utc | 25
Well done b. Hours later... still no mention at democracy now but lots of odd news and even a landslide in Kenya. No mention of the 'democracy never' strategies of the USA and its paid minions. Here is a story that is a free kick at the war machine and silence throughout. Sad.
Canthama , Nov 30 2019 0:21 utc | 26
OPCW has shown to be a pure political entity, used at will by few regimes in the UN to promote their agenda, b has done a tremendous job to humanity to bring the truth to the public worldwide. Syrians have paid the price for UN leaders support to global terrorism for too long. It must stop now.
Robert Snefjella , Nov 30 2019 0:31 utc | 27
At the risk of derailing this thread by going to a meta level, so perhaps just read and weep, the corruption of the OPCW is precisely normal, in this sense: The challenge: find one high profile institution in 'the west' that is not corrupt. And here I can bring to mind a long list of institutions that have given clear signs of being corrupt, while of course all the time posturing as dignified protectors of their solemn nominal mission statement. I'm hard put to find institutional exemplars of courage and integrity.

The rot seems to be most apparent at the head, but surely many many minor minions contribute. I refuse to bow to the contention that this general corruption is the human condition; I've met too many good and gutsy little people.

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[Nov 29, 2019] Manufacturing a pretext for the U.S. missile strike on Syria in April 2018 is nowhere near the biggest of OPCW's crimes. The OPCW is an accessory, both before and after the fact to the crime of mass murder.

Notable quotes:
"... The worst of these massacres happened in Ghouta in August 2013 when 2000 civilian hostages (rebel claim) were gassed to death by rebels and their pre-White Helmets "civil defence". The OPCW was there to cover up the crime and to fabricate evidence to assign blame to Syria. ..."
Nov 29, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Petri Krohn , Nov 29 2019 23:16 utc | 21

TAKE THEM TO THE HAGUE!

Manufacturing a pretext for the U.S. missile strike on Syria in April 2018 is nowhere near the biggest of OPCW's crimes. The OPCW is an accessory , both before and after the fact to the crime of mass murder.

It should now be clear to everyone that Syrian "rebels" gassed thousands of hostages in cellars, most likely with chlorine gas, and then paraded the victims in White Helmets snuff videos. OPCW conspired in this crime in both encouraging the terrorists to more murder and by protecting them afterward by assigning blame to Assad and the Syrian government.

The worst of these massacres happened in Ghouta in August 2013 when 2000 civilian hostages (rebel claim) were gassed to death by rebels and their pre-White Helmets "civil defence". The OPCW was there to cover up the crime and to fabricate evidence to assign blame to Syria.

We have been documenting these crimes and hoaxes at A Closer Look On Syria from December 2012. OPCW was used from the beginning to manufacture consent for war. See for example:


karlof1 , Nov 29 2019 23:52 utc | 24

Petri Krohn @21--

Of course, the OPCW is already there! I highly suggest Caitlin Johnstone's article b linked be read, which can be found here .

We should expand on Petri's number of people involved in this crime to include all the paid disinformation artists noted in Caitlin's essay at minimum. What becomes very clear in all this is the total collusion with OPCW upper level management--those whom the whistleblowers and their allies within OPCW petitioned--in these crimes as Petri contends. Until they are visibly replaced, nothing issued by OPCW has any credence.

Canthama , Nov 30 2019 0:21 utc | 26
OPCW has shown to be a pure political entity, used at will by few regimes in the UN to promote their agenda, b has done a tremendous job to humanity to bring the truth to the public worldwide. Syrians have paid the price for UN leaders support to global terrorism for too long. It must stop now.
iv>

/div

[Nov 29, 2019] Mainstream Policy Expert Reveals How He Was Silenced On Syria Truth Did Not Matter

Nov 29, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

A mainstream media and academic expert this week issued a rare admission : that pretty much everything the establishment has fed the public on Syria is false or distorted; but it remains that after tragic eight-year long war is slowly coming to a close, new indisputable facts are coming to light. " Truth did not matter at all," he admits after years of providing commentary for mainstream publications.

In a lengthy thread on Twitter, counter-terrorism author and assistant professor of political science and public policy at Northeastern University Max Abrahms exposed how he saw the 'narrative managers' at work from the inside of the establishment think tank world and media. As his own research came to uncover and document the truth of what was happening in Syria, "the media would excise me and the research from their stories" he revealed. His work in the early years of the war appeared in The New York Times and other major outlets, however, he was increasingly censored and pushed out of a number of platforms for speaking inconvenient truths.

Below is his full commentary , written in the wake of the new OPCW leaks which the mainstream is still trying hard to ignore.

Dr. Max Abrahms, screengrab via The Center For Strategic & International Studies.

Every day there are new revelations that the "rebels" were in cahoots not only with Al Qaeda but also ISIS and official reports of Assad using chemical weapons were doctored according to the reports' own authors.

Were you ever skeptical that Assad was authorizing chemical weapons attacks when they were the one thing that put his winning the war at risk?

Authors of the official reports linking him to chemical weapons usage have now supplied evidence that their own reports were doctored .

When I was interviewed about Syria's military using chemical weapons, I expressed skepticism as Assad bucked the political science literature by engaging in the one conduct that would reverse his hard-fought victory.

But the media would excise me and the research from their stories.

The #1 story should be that authors of the official reports linking Assad to WMD usage have supplied evidence that they were doctored in defiance of the scientific evidence and exploited to push regime change in Damascus, which risked creating the Islamic State war with Russia.

Until you get how you were duped into supporting regime change in Syria you'll get duped into supporting other costly ventures to the local population , international stability and our counterterrorism efforts.

Max Abrahms ✔ @MaxAbrahms

The mainstream narrative of the Syria conflict has imploded.

Every day there are new revelations that the "rebels" were in cahoots not only with Al Qaeda but also ISIS & official reports of Assad using chemical weapons were doctored according to the reports' own authors.

The story of doctored WMD reports and Al Qaeda-led rebels must be told.

What happened in Syria is the American political establishment decided that the ends justify the means. Truth did not matter at all. We were told Assad must go based on WMD reports their own authors say were doctored to support "rebels" who were Al-Qaeda-led and helping ISIS.

Watch this interview and determine yourself whether you find trustworthy the official report linking Assad to the chlorine attack which was sold in the

sold in the media as casus belli for toppling Assad and has now been exposed by the fact-finders themselves as doctored.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/SMSyLg1E49M

If you think politicians, think tanks and media got a lot wrong in the Iraq war wait until you hear about the Syria war.

If you cheered for another regime change war then it doesn't matter whether the casus belli lacks evidence. The media is unmoved that multiple scientists who made up the official investigation doubt that the Syrian military was behind the attacks or the use of chlorine at all.


Bernard_2011 , 4 minutes ago link

Apparently Trump is too dumb to question what the Deep State tells him on this matter. Assad did it. End of story.

Justapleb , 29 minutes ago link

This is how they roll out new deep state Mockingbird Media clones.

The older completely discredited clones are replaced with new ones who pretend to have been right there with us all along.

Look at Obama. One solitary vote among so many regarding Iraq and he gained the anti-war vote and a Nobel Prize. Then he went about personally making the kill orders by drone, allowing the wicked witch to overthrow Syria and sodomize their leader with a bayonet. Then on to Syria, various African countries, etc.

I'm sure this *** has written lots on returning the Golan Heights to Syria, returning the West Bank to the Palestinians, renouncing foreign aid to Israel, etc. Right? Not.

uhland62 , 51 minutes ago link

The mendacity of 'the system' can be infuriating when you and your work is targeted.

What I see today is not any different in any way from what my elders told me about the Third Reich and what I heard from East Berlin and the Soviet Union under Stalin and successors. I grew up in West Berlin and we did meet people, heard things.

Heil Hegemon - and Heil to all its lackeys! Heil!!!

truthseeker47 , 57 minutes ago link

Ron Paul was trying to tell everyone right from the git-go that the Syrian gas attacks were a false flag, and the evidence and logic supported a false flag operation. Even more annoying, the 100 or so Tomahawk missiles cost US taxpayers about a $million each. But maybe the missiles were getting old, and the military needed some practice shots.

MrBoompi , 1 hour ago link

We gassed some folks....

cwsuisse , 1 hour ago link

Steele is credible. I believe that the OPCW doctored the reports upon instructions. The narrative management on Syria has totally destroyed the trust in the western governments and has demonstrated that the US, the UK and the EU are not behaving any better than China or Russia.

QABubba , 44 minutes ago link

Someone needs to make an argument as to why we should believe any of these guys. I mean, after you have been proven liars so many times, should we not throw the rotten tomatoes?

strannick , 2 hours ago link

America will tell any lie, commit any atrocity, on behalf of its military industrial complex, bankster, Zionist elite, while manufacturing consent for its evil by its corrupt complicit Mainstream Media. Is that even news?

mailll , 2 hours ago link

It doesn't matter Max, we already knew all this news about Syria was fake. When they were trying to fulfill an agenda, which was to overthrow Syria for the sake of Israel, since Syria is part of this fictitious promised land, their lies help support this agenda. Just like the Zionist attacks on the world trade center and the pentagon with remote controlled airplanes and pre-planted controlled demolition explosives. They were followed up with a bunch of lies to the entire world telling us it was a handful of Muslims who have never flown jumbo jets before. And they performed top gun maneuvers with these jumbo jets and breached perhaps the greatest air defense system in the world with only primitive box cutters. I totally believe the US and Israel covertly created ISIS. And the support funds came from the Zionist controlled printing presses, and from the pentagon budget that was unaccounted for. But unfortunately, most Americans still drink the Kool-aid. They continue to believe their lies. And because of this, they will keep doing what they are doing.

White Nat , 2 hours ago link

Here's Jeffrey Epstein's BFF and Mossad handler Ehud Barak pinning the israeli 9/11 false flag on the Osama bin Laden donkey within hours of the attack.

A chief architect of 9-11, Ehud Barak, interviewed on BBC an hour after attacks

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GAueLjdKh1s

Married Israeli politician Ehud Barak is seen hiding his face entering Jeffrey Epstein's NYC townhouse

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7250009/Netanyahu-challenger-Ehud-Barak-hides-face-enters-entering-Jeffrey-Epsteins-mansion.html

The Harlequin , 2 hours ago link

...more on AVAAZ and Syria from my own archives, probably already republished here at the time!

http://www.wrongkindofgreen.org/2014/09/17/syria-avaaz-purpose-the-art-of-selling-hate-for-empire/

https://www.activistpost.com/2016/01/avaaz-the-online-pro-war-propagandist-and-color-revolution-ngo.html

https://www.globalresearch.ca/avaaz-the-lobbyist-that-masquerades-as-online-activism/5314829

https://www.moonofalabama.org/2012/03/avaaz-sponsoring-fake-reporting-from-syria.html

JB Say , 2 hours ago link

That was a sloppy *** false flag too. The "agencies" are getting lazy because they own the press and Americans are incredibly dumbed down on foreign policy. The got away with 2 planes collapsing 3 WTC buildings so maybe they figure why bother even making it look convincing.

monty42 , 2 hours ago link

Since it follows a pattern, it's not even just Syria. The US regime is a state sponsor of terrorism, by their own definition, and go into countries and create chaos and revolution, attempting regime change, creating a crisis they then use as "justification" for escalating into open conflict against the victim. Accuse the victim nation of crimes, blanketing the world in propaganda to delude the masses. Try to focus their attention on a single bad guy in their narrative, a "brutal dictator" or whatnot. Attack by proxy and directly, sanction, bomb, etc until the victim is left unable to produce for their own needs, making them dependent, and then going in to apply the chains of debt to the victim to pay the empire to rebuild what they destroyed. Everyone gets rich, increased resources from theft, testing of weapons systems, dominion over the new vassal nation, etc, while the victim is subjugated.

Soloamber , 2 hours ago link

I would like to know who the "narrative managers " are because you know if they do it with Syria they are doing it on everything .

No wonder there is a growing contemptuous distrust of most of the MSM .

It is as if they act in concert and limit anything that doesn't support their agenda.

... ... ...

White Nat , 2 hours ago link

israel and their US sayanim want all of their enemies destroyed using US blood and treasure aka balkanizing the middle east.

Speeches that still matter: Gen Wesley Clark on US going to war in 7 countries in 5 yrs

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gTbg11pCwOc

The "memo" Wesley Clark refers to came directly from zionist war criminal Paul Wolfowitz who was whispering in the ear of Donald Rumsfeld the whole way.

Wolfowitz is perhaps better known not for writing the Wolfowitz Doctrine but for co-authoring Rebuilding America's Defenses, a report released in September 2000 by Zionist neocon think tank PNAC (The Project for a New American Century). The PNAC membership list is a "Who's Who" of American Zionist New World Order conspirators – in addition to Wolfowitz the list includes **** Cheney Donald Rumsfeld, Robert Kagan, I. Lewis (Scooter) Libby, Richard Perle, Doug Feith and many others.

https://thefreedomarticles.com/wolfowitz-doctrine-us-plan-global-supremacy/

PNAC. Greater Israel Project. Oded Yinon Plan.

Long-term the tribe plans to rule the earth from the third temple in Jerusalem.

That's why they are working so hard to shut the goyim up and flood all white countries with third world sewage.

E Michael Jones and Vincent James Discuss the ADL

https://www.bitchute.com/video/CTSjzm8FYH8y/

Fentonbr , 2 hours ago link

Everyone now knows how corrupt it all is now, Thank God Clinton lost!

White Nat , 2 hours ago link

Hillary Clinton Email: 'Syria Must Be Destroyed For Israel'

https://neonnettle.com/features/1360-hillary-clinton-email-syria-must-be-destroyed-for-israel-

lwilland1012 , 2 hours ago link

Puppets have Masters.

The Harlequin , 2 hours ago link

"The mainstream narrative of the Syria conflict has imploded."

"Every day there are new revelations that the "rebels" were in cahoots not only with Al Qaeda but also ISIS & official reports of Assad using chemical weapons were doctored according to the reports' own authors."

IF YOU HAVE BEEN PAYING ATTENTION...

...you would know that the "narrative" imploded from the moment AVAAZ started handing out satellite phones to the "rebels" and "No-Fly Zone" became Clinton's cackling catch-cry ...in 2011!

UBrexitUPay4it , 2 hours ago link

Bless you for trying, but you would do less damage by quietly withdrawing. You just look silly. USA spent 4+ years fighting ISIS, during which time ISIS spread across the middle East. Russia stepped in with 40 aircraft, funded through their normal air force training program, and destroyed ISIS in 9 months.

Either Russians are superhuman warriors, or the west was lying when it claimed to be fighting ISIS. Which is it?

HRH of Aquitaine 2.0 , 3 hours ago link

The MSM in the US is compromised and is fully state media, at this point. Deep state, straight from the ******* pond scum suckers in DC.

[Nov 28, 2019] Fox News host Tucker Carlson has crossed an MSM Rubicon and questioned the Douma "gas attack" fraud on air, bringing up the OPCW whistleblower. Then he "rooted for Russia" over Ukraine. Was it a "betrayal," or epic truth-trolling?

Notable quotes:
"... The polarizing Fox host dismantled the official Western media narrative in a seven-minute segment that included an interview with the Guardian correspondent who personally witnessed the second whistleblower present evidence to the agency. ..."
"... "America almost attacked a country and killed untold thousands of people over an attack that may never have happened in the first place – that powerful people may very well have been lying about," Carlson told his audience, replaying footage of his show from the days following the attack to show he'd always been suspicious it had happened as reported. ..."
Nov 28, 2019 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

Patient Observer November 26, 2019 at 1:06 pm

Tucker Carlson lets it all hang out:

Fox News host Tucker Carlson has crossed an MSM Rubicon and questioned the Douma "gas attack" fraud on air, bringing up the OPCW whistleblower. Then he "rooted for Russia" over Ukraine. Was it a "betrayal," or epic truth-trolling?

Carlson boldly went where no mainstream TV host had gone before, unpacking the explosive story of April 2018's Douma "chemical weapons attack." While the "attack" was attributed to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad by an altered report from the Organization for the Prevention of Chemical Weapons, two whistleblowers within the group accused it of omitting evidence to craft a misleading narrative – a fact that has never crossed the lips of US media until Monday night.

Must Watch @TuckerCarlson Segment Tonight: New Evidence Shows Syria's Assad May Have Been Falsely Blamed for 2018 Chemical Attack"We've been lied to, we've been manipulated, we knew it at the time." pic.twitter.com/vKw6YnphcT

-- The Columbia Bugle (@ColumbiaBugle) November 26, 2019

The polarizing Fox host dismantled the official Western media narrative in a seven-minute segment that included an interview with the Guardian correspondent who personally witnessed the second whistleblower present evidence to the agency.

"America almost attacked a country and killed untold thousands of people over an attack that may never have happened in the first place – that powerful people may very well have been lying about," Carlson told his audience, replaying footage of his show from the days following the attack to show he'd always been suspicious it had happened as reported.

https://www.rt.com/usa/474372-tucker-carlson-syria-russia-ukraine/

Patient Observer November 26, 2019 at 1:09 pm
The next time Tulsi Gabbard is on Carlson's show will be interesting. Can they now speak truth about Syria?

Carlson is the most watched political commentator on US television. He is opening a new can of worms for the MSM.

Like Like

yalensis November 26, 2019 at 2:28 pm
Heroes arise from strange places; nobody would have guessed

Like Like

Patient Observer November 26, 2019 at 2:36 pm
Carlson is politically astute and media smart. He would not make such statements unless he was sure they would not be excessively damaging, advance his message and boost his popularity. A real risk is Fox News pulling the plug though.

Like Like

Mark Chapman November 26, 2019 at 7:17 pm
Fortuitous indeed that I was not eating or drinking anything when he mentioned Samantha Power and 'stupid decisions'; otherwise, there would have been a pressure-diffused spray of it everywhere. He did indeed let it all hang out – I continue to marvel at his transformation. Who would ever have imagined? I would once have liked to hear of him being roasted alive over a slow fire, back when he was snarking and smirking his way through defenses of the Bush administrations ham-fisted policy strangulation. Well, by God, whatever it takes, and hero biscuits to the medium. Rock on, Tucker.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/-XfmHyG8y-g?version=3&rel=1&fs=1&autohide=2&showsearch=0&showinfo=1&iv_load_policy=1&wmode=transparent

Like Like

[Nov 27, 2019] Leaked email on alleged chemical attack shows 2018 strikes against Syria based on lies by Niles Niemuth

Notable quotes:
"... The alleged attack in Douma came as Assad was consolidating control of the areas around Damascus and shortly after Trump had announced that US troops deployed to control the eastern half of Syria would soon be leaving. The purported Syrian government gas attack was seized on as a casus belli . ..."
"... Saturday's WikiLeaks release makes clear that the OPCW report published in July 2018 was shaped to conform with the public allegations made by the US, UK and France. British Mail on Sunday columnist Peter Hitchens, in an article based on the WikiLeaks release, noted that the doctoring of the OPCW fact-finders' report "appears to be the worst instance of 'sexing-up' in support of war since the invasion of Iraq and Tony Blair's doctored dossiers." ..."
"... The investigator who authored the memo, and who remains anonymous, sent the email to OPCW Chief of Cabinet Robert Fairweather and his deputy, Aamir Shouket, on June 22, 2018, to raise "grave concern" about details that had been excluded from or changed in the soon-to-be-published redacted report on the agency's investigation into the alleged gas attack. He wrote that the redacted report had strayed so far from the evidence collected that it "no longer reflects the work of the team." ..."
"... Last May, an unpublished report authored by ballistics expert Ian Henderson, who led the OPCW's engineer sub-team in Douma, was leaked . In it, Henderson raised serious questions about the claim that the attack was carried out by chlorine cylinders dropped from the air, a claim that implicated Assad's forces. Instead, Henderson's report concluded it was more likely that the two cylinders examined by investigators had been placed in their positions, implying that the purported attack had been staged by the Islamist forces that controlled the area at the time of the incident. ..."
"... In the course of the more than eight-year regime-change operation in Syria, during which the US and its allies have used various Al Qaeda-linked Islamist militias as their proxy forces, one CIA-sponsored provocation after another has been used in an (unsuccessful) attempt to stampede US public opinion behind the war. In 2013, a chemical gas attack in Eastern Ghouta was blamed on Assad and used to justify the preparation of massive US air strikes, which were called off at the last minute by Obama. This incident was later exposed by investigative reporter Seymour Hersh as the work of US-backed rebels acting with the support of Turkey. ..."
"... The pseudo-left groups that have lined up behind the criminal US war in Syria and pushed for an even bigger bloodbath stand exposed. The now defunct International Socialist Organization, which dissolved into the Democratic Party earlier this year, used its Socialist Worker publication to promote the CIA-backed opposition and denounce anyone who opposed the US intervention as a stooge of the bourgeois Assad government and "imperialist" Russia and Iran. ..."
Nov 25, 2019 | www.wsws.org

On Saturday, WikiLeaks published an internal email written by a member of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) fact-finding mission to Syria that exposes the far-reaching effort to suppress and distort evidence in order to claim that the government of Bashar al-Assad was responsible for the alleged April 7, 2018, gas attack in Douma, a suburb of Damascus then held by CIA-backed Islamist "rebel" forces.

The revelation once again makes clear the lying character of the campaign to justify the US regime-change operation in Syria, which has turned large sections of the country into a wasteland, killing hundreds of thousands of people and turning millions more into refugees.

The alleged attack in which as many as 49 people were reportedly killed was seized on by the governments of the United States, Britain and France to justify the launching of air and missile strikes just one week later against Syrian government forces. The attacks took place just hours before an OPCW fact-finding team was due to arrive in Syria to begin an investigation. The assault brought the US and its allies to the brink of open war not just against Syria, but also against the Assad government's allies Iran and Russia.

The alleged attack in Douma came as Assad was consolidating control of the areas around Damascus and shortly after Trump had announced that US troops deployed to control the eastern half of Syria would soon be leaving. The purported Syrian government gas attack was seized on as a casus belli .

The U.S. launched an attack on Damascus, Syria on April 14, 2018. U.S. President Donald Trump announced airstrikes in retaliation for the country's alleged use of chemical weapons. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar)

On April 8, one day after the alleged chemical attack and before any investigation had been carried out, Trump tweeted that there had been a "mindless CHEMICAL attack" by the "Animal Assad" backed by Russia and Iran, and that there would be a "big price to pay." Under the guidance of Trump's newly appointed national security advisor, John Bolton, military options were drawn up to attack Syria. The air and missile strikes were launched on April 13, US time.

Saturday's WikiLeaks release makes clear that the OPCW report published in July 2018 was shaped to conform with the public allegations made by the US, UK and France. British Mail on Sunday columnist Peter Hitchens, in an article based on the WikiLeaks release, noted that the doctoring of the OPCW fact-finders' report "appears to be the worst instance of 'sexing-up' in support of war since the invasion of Iraq and Tony Blair's doctored dossiers."

The investigator who authored the memo, and who remains anonymous, sent the email to OPCW Chief of Cabinet Robert Fairweather and his deputy, Aamir Shouket, on June 22, 2018, to raise "grave concern" about details that had been excluded from or changed in the soon-to-be-published redacted report on the agency's investigation into the alleged gas attack. He wrote that the redacted report had strayed so far from the evidence collected that it "no longer reflects the work of the team."

The email highlights statements that misrepresent the evidence collected in the on-the-spot investigation, including the assertion that the team had found "sufficient evidence at this time to determine that chlorine, or another reactive chlorine-containing chemical, was likely released from cylinders." This was simply not the case. As the whistle-blower explained, while samples were recovered that had been in contact with one or more chemicals containing a reactive chlorine atom, they could have come from multiple sources, including household bleach. Moreover, there was insufficient evidence to show that the cylinders supposedly dropped onto Douma by Syrian helicopters were the source of a chemical release.

Another claim in the official report, that "high levels" of chlorinate organic derivatives were detected at the site of the alleged attack, was also false. According to the investigator, these chemicals were found in trace amounts as a low as 1–2 parts per billion.

The release of the email by WikiLeaks is only the latest episode in the unraveling of the official account, which began to come apart almost as soon as the alleged gas attack was trumpeted in the bourgeois press, accompanied by unverified video footage of children apparently suffering in a hospital.

Already in October 2018, the Working Group on Syria, Propaganda and Media published the results of its investigation into the incident, which found that given the evidence presented by the OPCW, it was impossible to determine if a chemical attack had in fact taken place. Initial claims by the US and France that nerve agent had been used had been dismissed out of hand by the OPCW.

Last May, an unpublished report authored by ballistics expert Ian Henderson, who led the OPCW's engineer sub-team in Douma, was leaked . In it, Henderson raised serious questions about the claim that the attack was carried out by chlorine cylinders dropped from the air, a claim that implicated Assad's forces. Instead, Henderson's report concluded it was more likely that the two cylinders examined by investigators had been placed in their positions, implying that the purported attack had been staged by the Islamist forces that controlled the area at the time of the incident.

Last week, Jonathan Steele, former senior foreign correspondent for the Guardian , reported in Counterpunch on a briefing by an OPCW whistleblower known as Alex, who relayed an incident in July 2018 in which dissenting experts were told in no uncertain terms at a meeting with three unidentified American officials that Syria was responsible for the alleged chlorine gas attack in Douma.

The final OPCW report published in March of this year omits any quantitative analysis of the low levels of chlorinated organic chemicals uncovered by investigators, undercutting the official claims of a chemical gas attack.

The annual conference of the OPCW begins today in The Hague, where the whistleblower who spoke to Steele hopes to raise concerns about the Douma investigation, though there are no indications that the organizers will allow such a discussion.

In the course of the more than eight-year regime-change operation in Syria, during which the US and its allies have used various Al Qaeda-linked Islamist militias as their proxy forces, one CIA-sponsored provocation after another has been used in an (unsuccessful) attempt to stampede US public opinion behind the war. In 2013, a chemical gas attack in Eastern Ghouta was blamed on Assad and used to justify the preparation of massive US air strikes, which were called off at the last minute by Obama. This incident was later exposed by investigative reporter Seymour Hersh as the work of US-backed rebels acting with the support of Turkey.

The pseudo-left groups that have lined up behind the criminal US war in Syria and pushed for an even bigger bloodbath stand exposed. The now defunct International Socialist Organization, which dissolved into the Democratic Party earlier this year, used its Socialist Worker publication to promote the CIA-backed opposition and denounce anyone who opposed the US intervention as a stooge of the bourgeois Assad government and "imperialist" Russia and Iran.

WikiLeak's critical role in bringing the investigator's damning email to light makes clear once again why its founder and publisher, Julian Assange, is rotting away in England's maximum security Belmarsh prison, facing extradition to the United States and 175 years in prison for exposing American war crimes in the Middle East. The US intelligence agencies and the entire political establishment, Democrats and Republicans alike, intend with their persecution of Assange, condemned by United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture Nils Melzer as a form of torture, to put a permanent clamp on information about the crimes of US imperialism.

The US government, with its immense resources and vast intelligence apparatus, has not yet succeeded in shutting down one of the most crucial resources in bringing before the public the truth about the operations of US and world imperialism. It is up to the international working class, as a vital part of its struggle to defend its democratic and social rights, to come to the defense of Assange as well as Chelsea Manning and demand their immediate release from prison and the dropping of all charges against them.

Niles Niemuth

[Nov 13, 2019] Plenty of motivation on all sides. Mass PR attempt to clean his image I'd imagine. TV could be hard to watch for a few days. They'll pin it on the Russians (or Chinese might be more modern).

Nov 13, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Michael Droy , Nov 11 2019 16:47 utc | 130

Just seen this:
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2019/11/11/james-le-mesurier-british-ex-army-officer-trained-syrias-white/

The guy that ran White Helmets just fell off his balcony and died this morning. aged 43.

Clearly murder I'd say. Plenty of motivation on all sides. Mass PR attempt to clean his image I'd imagine. TV could be hard to watch for a few days. They'll pin it on the Russians (or Chinese might be more modern).

Oddly enough I was wondering about the HK demonstrator that died falling from a 3rd floor parking lot "escaping from those violent HK police - how convenient.

Laguerre , Nov 11 2019 16:50 utc | 131

I don't think Le Mesurier "died", from natural causes, for example. Someone threw him off the balcony of his apartment. His wife said he'd taken a sleeping tablet, but that doesn't usually lead to sleepwalking. More likely one of his (Syrian) associates came (thus let into the apartment), and betraying him, did the dirty.

[Nov 13, 2019] It could well be that James le Mesurie kept for himself some of the Captagon shipped in industrial quantities through Turskish border for his and US coalition's "jihadists" for them to slaughter better the Syrians...

Was he Epstenised?
Nov 13, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org
Jen , Nov 11 2019 21:43 utc | 155
According to the RT.com and Sputnik news reports on James le Mesurier's death, his wife only found out after the police knocked on the front door and informed her.

So how did the police know and who informed them of the incident?

James le Mesurier and his wife had been living in a house in Istanbul's Beyoglu district not far from the British consulate. Several European nations and Russia maintain consulates in that district which historically has housed generations of European ambassadors to Ottoman Turkey / Republic of Turkey since the 1500s at least and was a cosmopolitan area where diplomats from various nations and Ottoman representatives exchanged news, gossip and information, discussed culture and politics, and of course spied on one another.

One should not rule out the possibility that James le Mesurier might have died accidentally from a combination of sleeping tablets, anti-depressant medication (oh dear, the poor fellow, I wonder why???), alcohol and feeling dizzy up on the balcony during the night. Equally one should not rule out the possibility that he was done in by his own perfidious-Albion side. Let's wait for the Turkish coroner's report.


Sasha , Nov 11 2019 22:18 utc | 156

@Posted by: Jen | Nov 11 2019 21:43 utc | 155

According to a report in Spuntnik Spanish, his own wife stated that he had been taking psycothropic drugs lately, along with sleeping pills and anti-depressants...really a bad combination...

It could well be that he kept for himself some of the Captagon shipped in industrial quantities through Turskish border for his and US coalition´s "jihadists" for them to slaughter better the Syrians...

Of course, knowing the historical record of the MI6, that this man was using such a combination of psychotropic substances, could well end in him confessing his role in the Syrian destruction once the smoke beggins to clear and the end of war, with its War Crime Tribunals, unfailingly, comes...

Whatever the reason, Good Ridance!
Because of him and his government, hundreds of thousands of innocent and patriotic people have died, the SAR has been reduced to dust, and the hugest wave of refugees since WWII has taken place and still in the move, whose effects are mainly suffered by neighboring countries in the ME, and parts of Europe, not precisely UK...

In the end, UK, if you watch attentively, has never been really part of Europe, it remains an island shoring up to the West... which has always had more to do with the US than with any other European nation...Indeed through centuries an enemy of Old European Empires...an allien entity to the EU.
If they got with it leaving the EU, well, Good Ridance too, as they have always acted as the Troy Horse of the US here, dynamiting as they could, through the US satraps, like Thatcher in the past, and now Johnson, what of the welfare state so deservedly the working masses who fought the past great war pressured to award themselves....

In the end pirates join pirates...as always have been...

Lurk , Nov 11 2019 22:29 utc | 158
FWIW, for now, I am not assuming that Le Mesurier is in fact dead at all.

In the Epstein case, people were readily prepared to consider a third option to the much publicized "suicide or suicided" question. Why not in this case?

FUKUS would certainly not like the possibility of Le Mesurier being questioned or even held resposible for some of the atrocious acts objectively ascribable to the White Helmets goons. After all, the initial media hype about these crooked 'angels' is bound to be overtaken by documented facts in the long run. At some point in time, too many impertinent questions will be asked.

Whereas most common helmet wearers are relatively faceless goons that can easily be dismissed as individual rogue elements gone off script or simply gotten rid of along the way by means of "management by drone", unfortunate jihadi infighting or simple sacrifice unto the Syrian army, Le Mesurier himself has a far too high profile and far too many implicating connections to the imperial nerve centers and therefore represents a serious liability to his controllers.

His disappearance from the public view should be considered rather convenient for some players, including the Turks, who are, incidentally, managing the stage of his alleged death. Nor is his wife a neutral witness.

Walter , Nov 11 2019 22:38 utc | 159
@ Le Mesurier . The normal life expectancy for the Good Man reads as 95, or thereabout. There's no button in "lifestyle" for "MI6".

KUBARK manual call for falls.

Dead men tell no tales? Yes they do.

There are no accidents in the political realm...

[Nov 11, 2019] White Helmets 'MI-6 Co-Founder' Found Dead In Turkey Zero Hedge

Notable quotes:
"... Blumenthal writes, "When Defense Secretary James Mattis cited 'social media' in place of scientific evidence of a chemical attack in Duma, he was referring to video shot by members of the White Helmets. Similarly, when State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert sought to explain why the US bombed Syria before inspectors from the OPCW could produce a report from the ground, she claimed , 'We have our own intelligence.' With little else to offer, she was likely referring to social media material published by members of the White Helmets. " ..."
"... Weeks after the Douma incident, Russian officials brought fifteen people to The Hague said to have been present, including 11-year-old Hassan Diab who was seen in a widely-distributed White Helmets video receiving "emergency treatment" in a local hospital after the alleged incident. ..."
"... Also speaking at The Hague was Halil al-Jaish, an emergency worker who treated people at the Douma hospital the day of the attack - who said that while some patients did come in for respiratory problems, they were attributed to heavy dust, present in the air after recent airstrikes, but that nobody showed signs of chemical warfare poisoning . ..."
"... USAID = State Dept wing of CIA specializing in infiltration, developing HUMINT, and espionage. Anything secret in a free Republic is certainly criminal and of no benefit to its citizens. ..."
Nov 11, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

by Tyler Durden Mon, 11/11/2019 - 14:30 0 SHARES

A former British army officer and military contractor who founded the shadowy 'White Helmets' has been found dead near his home in Istanbul , days after he was accused by Russia of being a spy with "connections to terrorist groups."

The body of 43-year-old James Le Mesurier was found Monday in the Beyoglu district of the city, with state-run Anadolu news agency reporting that he may have fallen to his death .

The White Helmets, a roughly 3,000 member NGO formally known as the Syrian Civil Defense, was established in Turkey in "late 2012 - early 2013" Le Mesurier trained an initial group of 20 Syrians. The group then received funding from Le Mesurier's Netherlands-based non-profit group, Mayday Rescue - which is in turn funded by grants from the Dutch, British, Danish and German governments .

According to reporter and author Max Blumenthal , the White Helmets received at least $55 million from the British Foreign Office and $23 million from the Agency for International Development. They have also received millions from Qatar, which has backed several extremist groups in Syria including Al Qaeda.

The US has provided at least $32 million to the group - around 1/3 of their total funding - through a USAID scheme orchestrated by the Obama State Department and routed overseas using a Washington D.C. contractor participating in USAID's Syria regional program , Chemonics.

According to their website, the White Helmets have been directly funded by Mayday Rescue, and a company called Chemonics, since 2014 .

Yet there's evidence that both of those organizations started supporting the White Helmets back in early 2013, right around the time the White Helmets claim to have formed as self-organized groups .

Mayday Rescue, as we said, is funded by the Dutch, British, Danish and German governments . And Chemonics?

They are a Washington, D.C. based contractor that was awarded $128.5 million in January 2013 to support "a peaceful transition to a democratic and stable Syria" as part of USAID's Syria regional program. At least $32 million has been given directly to the White Helmets as of February 2018 . - TruthInMedia

Notably, the Trump administration cut US funding to the White Helmets last May , placing them under " active review ."

While the White Helmets tout themselves as 'first responders', the group has been accused of staging multiple chemical attacks - including an April 7 incident in Duma , Syria which the White House used as a pretext to bomb Syrian government facilities and bases.

Blumenthal writes, "When Defense Secretary James Mattis cited 'social media' in place of scientific evidence of a chemical attack in Duma, he was referring to video shot by members of the White Helmets. Similarly, when State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert sought to explain why the US bombed Syria before inspectors from the OPCW could produce a report from the ground, she claimed , 'We have our own intelligence.' With little else to offer, she was likely referring to social media material published by members of the White Helmets. "

Days before Mesurier's death, Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova claimed he was a "former agent of Britain's MI6, who had been spotted all around the world."

Weeks after the Douma incident, Russian officials brought fifteen people to The Hague said to have been present, including 11-year-old Hassan Diab who was seen in a widely-distributed White Helmets video receiving "emergency treatment" in a local hospital after the alleged incident.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/HWaG3cQGURc

"We were at the basement and we heard people shouting that we needed to go to a hospital. We went through a tunnel. At the hospital they started pouring cold water on me, " said Diab, who was featured in the video which Russia's ambassador to the Netherlands says was staged.

Others present during the filming of Diab's hospital "cleanup" by the White Helmets include hospital administrator Ahmad Kashoi, who runs the emergency ward.

" There were people unknown to us who were filming the emergency care, they were filming the chaos taking place inside, and were filming people being doused with water . The instruments they used to douse them with water were originally used to clean the floors actually," Ahmad Kashoi, an administrator of the emergency ward, recalled. " That happened for about an hour , we provided help to them and sent them home. No one has died. No one suffered from chemical exposure." - RT

Also speaking at The Hague was Halil al-Jaish, an emergency worker who treated people at the Douma hospital the day of the attack - who said that while some patients did come in for respiratory problems, they were attributed to heavy dust, present in the air after recent airstrikes, but that nobody showed signs of chemical warfare poisoning .

According to the governor's office in Istanbul, "comprehensive administrative and judicial investigations" have been initiated into Le Mesurier's death.

Perhaps he fell after an Assad operative spiked his tea with polonium, affecting his equilibrium. Whatever the case, it wouldn't surprise us if this becomes a pretext to 'liberate' Syria.


P Dunne , 1 minute ago link

I am not saddened by his departure he was responsible for allot of death and mayhem. It was a brilliant bit of spy craft however, total propaganda, well funded and supported by more than one intelligence agency. I did laugh at the puppy event where white helmets were filmed saving puppies in a war zone, so fake as to make one doubt they were seriously expecting people to believe it.

The effort was so convincing that Canada allowed 200 of these (POS) terrorists to immigrate as war heroes, jumping the Que and going strait to citizenship..

The USA however continues to ban them from entry but sends money regularly.

Pair Of Dimes Shift , 8 minutes ago link

Totes organic.

"The war is over. Why gas?" - Bashy Assad

Ban KKiller , 11 minutes ago link

It was just over money, no biggie. AND someone, somewhere, didn't want him to be able to rat anyone out. Just curious...where was Cuntly Clinton?

Captain Phoebus , 14 minutes ago link

I'm surprised Putin hasn't been blamed yet

Newcular , 19 minutes ago link

Not entirely unexpected - the guy knew way too much. Seems like the CIA is cleaning up its mess under Trump.

gyrfalcon , 29 minutes ago link

I know a thing or two 'bout killing and there ain't no way to kill someone by accident. You got to work at killing.

Thom Paine , 45 minutes ago link

Money for MIC .. No problem.

Money for illegals ... No problem

Money for citizens - **** off

haruspicio , 42 minutes ago link

He set up the White Helmets propaganda and false flag unit? Well I guess it's good he is dead then. The world can certainly struggle on without more propaganda. Leaping off a balcony....now that may be something more to it that that. The recent news about the OPCW rigging the gas attack reports by omitting key information because of instruction from the US.

Perhaps his conscience got to him, or maybe someone (MI6) bumped him off.

uhland62 , 47 minutes ago link

Britain has always got money for exacerbating the conflicts. No money for housing and schools but for creating chaos and destruction elsewhere. NGOs are always sus because they are not accountable to anyone except their money men. This one was even a FAKE NGO because they'd received money from government fed orgs.

Florida man , 50 minutes ago link

Very well deserved death. The White helmets are the right hand helpers of the ISIS.

sensibility , 1 hour ago link

The Dems can't afford a SyriaGate along with their UkrainGate, tied it off quickly, this guy knew too much.

DEDA CVETKO , 1 hour ago link

This article should be read to the original Broadway cast theme from: MI-6 on Broadway:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5WWVBnBMnqc

CC713Techman , 1 hour ago link

Polonium? Maybe. Maybe it's Novichok. Check the door knobs.

PKKA , 1 hour ago link

MI 6 gets rid of those who "knew too much."

CC713Techman , 1 hour ago link

Where are the images of them with black flags in the background or beheading that boy?

ThomasEdmonds , 1 hour ago link

I wouldn't be surprised to see a flurry of deaths related to current and former British and US intel operatives. So many intel agencies, so many grudges. Who is to blame?

PKKA , 1 hour ago link

A monstrous performance from the "White Helmets"

"Rescuers" evacuate victims from the "affected area" without gas masks and protective suits (remember the ways sarin penetrates the body, how such suits look like), while the same child is used to shoot several scenes.

In the first (C) Reuters photo, a man carries a "dead" girl out of a dilapidated building. In the second photo in a different storyline, she is already carried by a woman - the "rescuer" of the White Helmets.

https://ic.pics.livejournal.com/graf_kankrin/77689368/255497/255497_900.jpg

tangent , 52 minutes ago link

The white helmets are KNOWN to have false-flagged the Syria gas attacks. Its amazing how well established this fact is when combined how many cult members believe it is a mere theory.

uhland62 , 41 minutes ago link

The White Helmets were even a FAKE NGO because they had received money from government fed organisations.

consider me gone , 1 hour ago link

White westerner involved in ME conflict found murdered in Islamic country. No ****? That almost never happens.

vienna_proxy , 1 hour ago link

he was isis

vienna_proxy , 1 hour ago link

anyone who has supported the isis white helmets, including the media, should be executed for treason. fvck the mass arrests, i'm fine with cabal demons getting knocked off one by one, just like this mesurier fvcker

Blue Steel 309 , 1 hour ago link

USAID = State Dept wing of CIA specializing in infiltration, developing HUMINT, and espionage. Anything secret in a free Republic is certainly criminal and of no benefit to its citizens.

vienna_proxy , 1 hour ago link

nicely said

PKKA , 1 hour ago link

A monstrous performance from the "White Helmets" and REMOVAL OF THE PRIMARY WITNESS

- Have you videotaped this mustard gas attack? OK. Now give a cigarette and a can of beer. And wash my t-shirt from this powder.

https://cloud.enigma.ua/04_10_2019_09_28_am_R3GzKTLJX9zpo4xfbNrGxdkhH66OMqOVr9yAtwOA.jpeg

[Nov 01, 2019] Trump just authorized 4.5 million to the "white helmets"

Nov 01, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Mark52 , Oct 31 2019 0:31 utc | 40

Trump just authorized 4.5 million to the "white helmets"

https://thegrayzone.com/2019/10/28/trump-million-syria-jihadist-white-helmets/#more-15904

[Oct 28, 2019] Expert Panel Finds Gaping Plot-Holes In OPCW Report On Alleged Syrian Chemical Attack by Caitlin Johnstone

Highly recommended!
This implicates State Department in the attempt to run a false flag operation. If we add that the State Department is the key organization behind for color revolution against Trump that picture becomes even more disturbing. This is really a neocon vipers nest.
Notable quotes:
"... This was because the public had already been shown that highly suspicious chemical attacks tended to happen when the Trump administration begins pushing for a reversal of standing US Syria policy, as I noted in April 2017 immediately following the alleged attack in Khan Shaykhun. ..."
"... "I was able to predict Douma in 2018 because it happened already almost exactly 1 year prior, at Khan Shaykhun, April 4, 2017," Cox told me on Twitter earlier today. ..."
"... And, like clockwork, on April 7 2018 dozens of civilians in Douma were killed in an incident which was quickly reported as a Syrian government chemical attack by all the usual establishment narrative managers on Syria , with everyone from the White Helmets to Charles Lister to Eliot Higgins to Julian Röpcke loudly flagging it on social media to draw the attention of mainstream news outlets who were slower to pick up the story. ..."
"... Long before any investigation into this suspicious incident could even be begun, much less completed, the US State Department declared it to have been a chemical weapons attack perpetrated by the Syrian government, saying "the Assad regime must be held accountable", and that Russia "ultimately bears responsibility" for the attack. Which was of course mighty convenient for US geostrategic interests. ..."
"... On the 14th of April 2018, the US, UK and France launched an airstrike on the Syrian government as punishment for using chemical weapons, citing secret "intelligence" which the US government claimed gave them "very high confidence that Syria was responsible." The public has to this day never been permitted to see this intelligence. This all happened before any formal international investigation could take place. ..."
"... The OPCW conducted their investigation, and in July 2018 published an interim report saying that "no organophosphorus nerve agents or their degradation products were detected, either in the environmental samples or in plasma samples from the alleged casualties." This ruled out sarin gas, invalidating earlier reports by Syria war pundits like Charles Lister who claimed that sarin had been used, but it didn't rule out chlorine gas. In March of this year the OPCW issued its final report saying forensics were consistent with chlorine gas use and advancing a ballistics report which strongly implicated the Assad government by implying it was an aerial drop (Syrian opposition militias have no air force). The official Twitter account for the UK Delegation to the OPCW tweeted at the time that the report "confirms chemical weapons used, demonstrating the vital importance of OPCW's work. This confirmed chlorine attack was only the latest example of Asad regime's CW attacks on its own population." ..."
"... In May of this year, a leaked internal document from the OPCW investigation was published by the Working Group on Syria, Propaganda and Media which completely contradicts the findings of the official report published in March. The leaked Engineering Assessment said that "observations at the scene of the two locations, together with subsequent analysis, suggest there is a higher probability both cylinders were manually placed at those two locations rather than being delivered from aircraft," which would implicate the forces on the ground in the incident rather than the Assad government. ..."
"... The OPCW indirectly confirmed the document's authenticity by telling the press that its release had been "unauthorised". Climate Audit's Stephen McIntyre published an excellent thread breaking down how the document invalidates the OPCW's claims which you can read by clicking here . Establishment narrative managers had a very difficult time spinning the fact that the OPCW had taken it upon itself to hide findings from the public which dissented from its official report on an incident which preceded an international act of war upon a sovereign nation, and all the implications that necessarily has for the legitimacy of the organization's other work. ..."
"... "Based on the whistleblower's extensive presentation, including internal emails, text exchanges and suppressed draft reports, we are unanimous in expressing our alarm over unacceptable practices in the investigation of the alleged chemical attack in Douma, near the Syrian capital of Damascus on 7 April 2018. We became convinced by the testimony that key information about chemical analyses, toxicology consultations, ballistics studies, and witness testimonies was suppressed, ostensibly to favor a preordained conclusion ." ..."
"... "The convincing evidence of irregular behaviour in the OPCW investigation of the alleged Douma chemical attack confirms doubts and suspicions I already had. I could make no sense of what I was reading in the international press. Even official reports of investigations seemed incoherent at best. The picture is certainly clearer now, although very disturbing. " ..."
"... "The interpretation of the environmental analysis results is equally questionable. Many, if not all, of the so-called 'smoking gun' chlorinated organic chemicals claimed to be not naturally present in the environment' (para 2.6) are in fact ubiquitous in the background, either naturally or anthropogenically (wood preservatives, chlorinated water supplies etc). The report, in fact, acknowledges this in Annex 4 para 7, even stating the importance of gathering control samples to measure the background for such chlorinated organic derivatives. Yet, no analysis results for these same control samples (Annex 5), which inspectors on the ground would have gone to great lengths to gather, were reported." ..."
"... "One alternative ascribing the origin of the crater to an explosive device was considered briefly but, despite an almost identical crater (understood to have resulted from a mortar penetrating the roof) being observed on an adjacent rooftop, was dismissed because of ' the absence of primary and secondary fragmentation characteristics'. In contrast, explosive fragmentation characteristics were noted in the leaked study ." ..."
"... "Contrary to what has been publicly stated by the Director General of the OPCW it was evident to the panel that many of the inspectors in the Douma investigation were not involved or consulted in the post-deployment phase or had any contribution to, or knowledge of the content of the final report until it was made public . The panel is particularly troubled by organisational efforts to obfuscate and prevent inspectors from raising legitimate concerns about possible malpractices surrounding the Douma investigation." ..."
Oct 28, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Caitlin Johnstone via Medium.com,

The Courage Foundation , an international protection and advocacy group for whistleblowers, has published the findings of a panel it convened last week on the extremely suspicious behavior of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in its investigation of an alleged chemical attack in Douma, Syria last year. After hearing an extensive presentation from a member of the OPCW's Douma investigation team, the panel's members (including a world-renowned former OPCW Director General) report that they are "unanimous in expressing our alarm over unacceptable practices in the investigation of the alleged chemical attack in Douma, near the Syrian capital of Damascus on 7 April 2018."

I'll get to the panel and its findings in a moment, but first I should provide some historical background so that readers who aren't intimately familiar with this ongoing scandal can fully appreciate the significance of this new development.

In late March of last year, President Trump publicly stated that the US military would soon be withdrawing troops from Syria, causing some with an ear to the ground like independent US congressional candidate Steve Cox to predict that there would shortly be a false flag chemical weapons attack in that nation. This was because the public had already been shown that highly suspicious chemical attacks tended to happen when the Trump administration begins pushing for a reversal of standing US Syria policy, as I noted in April 2017 immediately following the alleged attack in Khan Shaykhun.

"I was able to predict Douma in 2018 because it happened already almost exactly 1 year prior, at Khan Shaykhun, April 4, 2017," Cox told me on Twitter earlier today.

"Khan Shaykhun also occurred within days of the Trump Admin saying we're leaving Syria."

And, like clockwork, on April 7 2018 dozens of civilians in Douma were killed in an incident which was quickly reported as a Syrian government chemical attack by all the usual establishment narrative managers on Syria , with everyone from the White Helmets to Charles Lister to Eliot Higgins to Julian Röpcke loudly flagging it on social media to draw the attention of mainstream news outlets who were slower to pick up the story.

There was immediate skepticism, partly because acclaimed journalists like Sy Hersh have been highlighting plot holes in the official story about chemical weapons in Syria since 2013, partly because Assad would stand nothing to gain and everything to lose by using a banned yet highly ineffective weapon in a battle he'd already essentially won in that region, and partly because the people controlling things on the ground in Douma were the Al Qaeda-linked extremist group Jaysh-al Islam and the incredibly shady narrative management operation known as the White Helmets. Those groups, unlike the Assad government, most certainly would stand everything to gain by staging a chemical attack in the desperate hope that it would draw NATO powers into attacking the Syrian government and perhaps saving their necks.

Long before any investigation into this suspicious incident could even be begun, much less completed, the US State Department declared it to have been a chemical weapons attack perpetrated by the Syrian government, saying "the Assad regime must be held accountable", and that Russia "ultimately bears responsibility" for the attack. Which was of course mighty convenient for US geostrategic interests.

On the 14th of April 2018, the US, UK and France launched an airstrike on the Syrian government as punishment for using chemical weapons, citing secret "intelligence" which the US government claimed gave them "very high confidence that Syria was responsible." The public has to this day never been permitted to see this intelligence. This all happened before any formal international investigation could take place.

The OPCW conducted their investigation, and in July 2018 published an interim report saying that "no organophosphorus nerve agents or their degradation products were detected, either in the environmental samples or in plasma samples from the alleged casualties." This ruled out sarin gas, invalidating earlier reports by Syria war pundits like Charles Lister who claimed that sarin had been used, but it didn't rule out chlorine gas. In March of this year the OPCW issued its final report saying forensics were consistent with chlorine gas use and advancing a ballistics report which strongly implicated the Assad government by implying it was an aerial drop (Syrian opposition militias have no air force). The official Twitter account for the UK Delegation to the OPCW tweeted at the time that the report "confirms chemical weapons used, demonstrating the vital importance of OPCW's work. This confirmed chlorine attack was only the latest example of Asad regime's CW attacks on its own population."

In May of this year, a leaked internal document from the OPCW investigation was published by the Working Group on Syria, Propaganda and Media which completely contradicts the findings of the official report published in March. The leaked Engineering Assessment said that "observations at the scene of the two locations, together with subsequent analysis, suggest there is a higher probability both cylinders were manually placed at those two locations rather than being delivered from aircraft," which would implicate the forces on the ground in the incident rather than the Assad government.

The OPCW indirectly confirmed the document's authenticity by telling the press that its release had been "unauthorised". Climate Audit's Stephen McIntyre published an excellent thread breaking down how the document invalidates the OPCW's claims which you can read by clicking here . Establishment narrative managers had a very difficult time spinning the fact that the OPCW had taken it upon itself to hide findings from the public which dissented from its official report on an incident which preceded an international act of war upon a sovereign nation, and all the implications that necessarily has for the legitimacy of the organization's other work.

Throughout this time, critical thinkers like myself have been aggressively smeared as deranged conspiracy theorists, war crimes deniers and genocide deniers for expressing skepticism of the establishment-authorized narrative on Douma. Which takes us to today.

The Courage Foundation panel who met with the OPCW whistleblower consists of former OPCW Director General José Bustani (whose highly successful peacemongering once saw the lives of his children threatened by John Bolton during the lead-up to the Iraq invasion in an attempt to remove him from his position), WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Kristinn Hrafnsson , Professor of International Law Richard Falk , former British Army Major General John Holmes , Dr Helmut Lohrer of International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, German professor Dr Guenter Meyer of the Centre for Research on the Arab World, and former Deputy National Intelligence Officer for the Near East Elizabeth Murray of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity.

So these are not scrubs. These are not "conspiracy theorists" or "Russian propagandists". These are highly qualified and reputable professionals expressing deep concerns in the opaque and manipulative way the OPCW appears to have conducted its investigation into the Douma incident. Some highlights from their joint statement and analytical points are quoted below, with my own emphasis added in bold:

"Based on the whistleblower's extensive presentation, including internal emails, text exchanges and suppressed draft reports, we are unanimous in expressing our alarm over unacceptable practices in the investigation of the alleged chemical attack in Douma, near the Syrian capital of Damascus on 7 April 2018. We became convinced by the testimony that key information about chemical analyses, toxicology consultations, ballistics studies, and witness testimonies was suppressed, ostensibly to favor a preordained conclusion ."

"The convincing evidence of irregular behaviour in the OPCW investigation of the alleged Douma chemical attack confirms doubts and suspicions I already had. I could make no sense of what I was reading in the international press. Even official reports of investigations seemed incoherent at best. The picture is certainly clearer now, although very disturbing. "
~ Bustani

"A critical analysis of the final report of the Douma investigation left the panel in little doubt that conclusions drawn from each of the key evidentiary pillars of the investigation (chemical analysis, toxicology, ballistics and witness testimonies,) are flawed and bear little relation to the facts. "

From the section on Chemical Analysis:

"The interpretation of the environmental analysis results is equally questionable. Many, if not all, of the so-called 'smoking gun' chlorinated organic chemicals claimed to be not naturally present in the environment' (para 2.6) are in fact ubiquitous in the background, either naturally or anthropogenically (wood preservatives, chlorinated water supplies etc). The report, in fact, acknowledges this in Annex 4 para 7, even stating the importance of gathering control samples to measure the background for such chlorinated organic derivatives. Yet, no analysis results for these same control samples (Annex 5), which inspectors on the ground would have gone to great lengths to gather, were reported."

"Although the report stresses the 'levels' of the chlorinated organic chemicals as a basis for its conclusions (para 2.6), it never mentions what those levels were -- high, low, trace, sub-trace? Without providing data on the levels of these so-called 'smoking-gun' chemicals either for background or test samples, it is impossible to know if they were not simply due to background presence . In this regard, the panel is disturbed to learn that quantitative results for the levels of 'smoking gun' chemicals in specific samples were available to the investigators but this decisive information was withheld from the report ."

"The final report also acknowledges that the tell-tale chemicals supposedly indicating chlorine use, can also be generated by contact of samples with sodium hypochlorite, the principal ingredient of household bleaching agent (para 8.15). This game-changing hypothesis is, however, dismissed (and as it transpires, incorrectly) by stating no bleaching was observed at the site of investigation. (' At both locations, there were no visible signs of a bleach agent or discoloration due to contact with a bleach agent' ). The panel has been informed that no such observation was recorded during the on-site inspection and in any case dismissing the hypothesis simply by claiming the non -observation of discoloration in an already dusty and scorched environment seems tenuous and unscientific ."

From the section on Toxicology:

"The toxicological studies also reveal inconsistencies, incoherence and possible scientific irregularities. Consultations with toxicologists are reported to have taken place in September and October 2018 (para 8.87 and Annex 3), but no mention is made of what those same experts opined or concluded. Whilst the final toxicological assessment of the authors states ' it is not possible to precisely link the cause of the signs and symptoms to a specific chemical ' (para 9.6) the report nonetheless concludes there were reasonable grounds to believe chlorine gas was the chemical (used as a weapon)."

"More worrying is the fact that the panel viewed documented evidence that showed other toxicologists had been consulted in June 2018 prior to the release of the interim report. Expert opinions on that occasion were that the signs and symptoms observed in videos and from witness accounts were not consistent with exposure to molecular chlorine or any reactive-chlorine-containing chemical. Why no mention of this critical assessment, which contradicts that implied in the final report, was made is unclear and of concern. "

From the section on Ballistic Studies:

"One alternative ascribing the origin of the crater to an explosive device was considered briefly but, despite an almost identical crater (understood to have resulted from a mortar penetrating the roof) being observed on an adjacent rooftop, was dismissed because of ' the absence of primary and secondary fragmentation characteristics'. In contrast, explosive fragmentation characteristics were noted in the leaked study ."

From the section titled "Exclusion of inspectors and attempts to obfuscate":

"Contrary to what has been publicly stated by the Director General of the OPCW it was evident to the panel that many of the inspectors in the Douma investigation were not involved or consulted in the post-deployment phase or had any contribution to, or knowledge of the content of the final report until it was made public . The panel is particularly troubled by organisational efforts to obfuscate and prevent inspectors from raising legitimate concerns about possible malpractices surrounding the Douma investigation."

I'll leave it there for now.

* * *

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[Oct 24, 2019] The difference between the reality that we perceive and the way it is portrayed in the media is so stark the it reminds people about the USSR before the collapse

Notable quotes:
"... The difference between the reality that we perceive and the way it is portrayed in the media is so stark that sometimes I am not sure whether it is me who is insane or the world - the MSM and the cool-aid drinking libtards whose animosity against Trump won't let them distinguish black from white. Not that they were ever able to understand the real state of affairs. Discussions with them have always been about them regurgitating the MSM talking points without understanding any of it. ..."
Oct 24, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

ancientarcher , 24 October 2019 at 11:19 AM

Colonel, thanks for spelling it out so clearly.

The difference between the reality that we perceive and the way it is portrayed in the media is so stark that sometimes I am not sure whether it is me who is insane or the world - the MSM and the cool-aid drinking libtards whose animosity against Trump won't let them distinguish black from white. Not that they were ever able to understand the real state of affairs. Discussions with them have always been about them regurgitating the MSM talking points without understanding any of it.

While it will always be mystifying to me why so many people on the street blindly support America fighting and dying in the middle east, the support of the MSM and the paid hacks for eternal war is no surprise. I hope they get to send their children and grandchildren to these wars. More than that, I hope we get out of these wars. Trump might be able to put an end to it, and not just in Syria, if he wins a second term, which he will if he is allowed to contest the next election. There is however a chance that the borg will pull the rug from under him and bar him from the elections. Hope that doesn't come to pass.

[Oct 24, 2019] Trump is now proven war criminal: WikiLeaks Releases New Documents Questioning Syria Chemical Attack Narrative

Highly recommended!
Objectively this should be a death sentence for Trump reelection -- war criminals should never be reelected: he proved to be yet another MIC stooge. And his government is not that different form Hillarie's: it is the same government of lies by lies for liars (from MIC)...
There is no positives heroes in this story. As Colonel W. Patrick Lang noted raving neocon lunatics in congress brainwashed for years with the Iran obsession are yet another danger to us all. ( Joltin' Jack Keane wants your kids to fight Russia and Syria over Syrian oil. - Sic Semper Tyrannis _
Notable quotes:
"... "Based on the whistleblower's extensive presentation, including internal emails, text exchanges and suppressed draft reports, we are unanimous in expressing our alarm over unacceptable practices in the investigation of the alleged chemical attack in Douma," the experts pointed out. ..."
"... Bustani was quoted as saying he had long held doubts about the alleged attack in Douma, on the outskirts of Damascus. "I could make no sense of what I was reading in the international press. Even official reports of investigations seemed incoherent at best." ..."
"... Some dissenting officials as well as countries like Russia have accused the international chemical watchdog body, which operations in coordination with the UN, of being politically compromised when it comes to Syria. ..."
Oct 24, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

A whistleblower with the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), responsible for conducting an independent investigation into the alleged chemical attack in the Syrian town of Douma on April 7, 2018, has presented WikiLeaks with a body of evidence suggesting the chemical weapons watchdog agency manipulated and suppressed evidence .

A prior official OPCW report of the investigation issued last March found "reasonable grounds" for believing a toxic chemical was used against civilians, likely chlorine. Long prior to any independent investigators reaching the site, however, Washington had launched major tomahawk airstrikes against Damascus in retribution for "Assad gassing his own people" .

WikiLeaks published documents based on evidence presented by the internal OPCW whistleblower to an expert review panel on Wednesday. "The panel was presented with evidence that casts doubt on the integrity of the OPCW," WikiLeaks editor Kristinn Hrafnsson wrote.

An official WikiLeaks press release said as follows :

Kristinn Hrafnsson took part in the panel to review the testimony and documents from the OPCW whistleblower. He says: "The panel was presented with evidence that casts doubt on the integrity of the OPCW. Although the whistleblower was not ready to step forward and/or present documents to the public, WikiLeaks believes it is now of utmost interest for the public to see everything that was collected by the Fact Finding Mission on Douma and all scientific reports written in relation to the investigation."

"Based on the whistleblower's extensive presentation, including internal emails, text exchanges and suppressed draft reports, we are unanimous in expressing our alarm over unacceptable practices in the investigation of the alleged chemical attack in Douma," the experts pointed out.

"We became convinced by the testimony that key information about chemical analyses, toxicology consultations, ballistics studies, and witness testimonies was suppressed, ostensibly to favor a preordained conclusion ."

The testimony further revealed "disquieting efforts to exclude some inspectors from the investigation whilst thwarting their attempts to raise legitimate concerns , highlight irregular practices or even to express their differing observations and assessments."

The new information was enough to convince José Bustani, former director-general of the OPCW to conclude there is now "convincing evidence" of irregularities .

According to a summary of the latest controversy to cast doubt on the dominant mainstream narrative related to Douma, Middle East analysis site Al-Bab noted Bustain harbored prior doubts :

Bustani was quoted as saying he had long held doubts about the alleged attack in Douma, on the outskirts of Damascus. "I could make no sense of what I was reading in the international press. Even official reports of investigations seemed incoherent at best."

Some dissenting officials as well as countries like Russia have accused the international chemical watchdog body, which operations in coordination with the UN, of being politically compromised when it comes to Syria.


spam filter , 4 minutes ago link

"Because of my great wisdom as a stable genius, i launched major tomahawk airstrikes against Damascus in retribution for Assad gassing his own people" .

I am Ironman!

Has he lost his mind?

Can he see or is he blind?
Can he walk at all
Or if he moves will he fall?

boattrash , 2 minutes ago link

...to appease the neocons...he killed a total of 3 ground squirrels.

monty42 , 41 seconds ago link

Tell that to the Syrians who were killed, both soldiers and civilians, as well as those having to pay for the lost property that was destroyed. It was thrown out there, purely out of thin air, that nothing of substance was hit and it was just a show by Trump, despite reports by those terrorized by the attacks.

NA X-15 , 6 minutes ago link

It's the same lying neocon **** that cried out "Darfur!"..."Donbass!"...the exact same lying ****. **** them all to hell, I wish I could exterminate their voices forever.

Arising , 12 minutes ago link

I have reposted these wikileaks documents on many different sites, especially the one's where the intelligence agencies are active.

I want them to know that we know.

Chupacabra-322 , 16 minutes ago link

The Gas Lighting, PsyOp & False Flags will continue until the masses are completely Frightened & Brainwashed.

US Interference and Regime Change PsyOp

"Secret cables and reports by the U.S., Saudi and Israeli intelligence agencies indicate that the moment Assad rejected the Qatari pipeline, military and intelligence planners quickly arrived at the consensus that fomenting a Sunni uprising in Syria to overthrow the uncooperative Bashar Assad was a feasible path to achieving the shared objective of completing the Qatar/Turkey gas link. In 2009, according to WikiLeaks, soon after Bashar Assad rejected the Qatar pipeline, the CIA began funding opposition groups in Syria."

Regime change is the only reason we or any of our proxies are there. We have NO GOOD REASON being there other than this BS.

I mean C'mon now? These Pure Evil War Criminal Treasonous Seditious Deep State CIA, MI6, Mossad Psychopaths couldn't write up a different Scripted False Narrative PsyOp to sell to the World & American People.

CHEM ATTACK PART III RETURN OF THE ASSAD.

The Lack of creativity among those in the Pentagram & Deep Staters is downright pathetic.

Bolton was nothing more than a mere Agent of Chaos with his mission the for continuation of the Yinon Plan.

I'd respect them more if they'd just said, "we seeking regime change to secure the better interests of Israel, the US & World Community."

Wink, wink, nod, nod...those better interest are the Qatari Pipeline to provide continued SA & Petro Dollar Hegemony among Vassel States. While simultaneously eliminating Russia's & Gasprom's ability to supply European Oil.

Meximus , 23 minutes ago link

The french are having misgivings in supporting this war crime. They are now talking with russia to normalize relations.

Soon we will go from FUKUS to just UKK (united **** kingdom) .

ebworthen , 49 minutes ago link

People are still believing the chemical attack canard? Seriously?

Assad wears a suit and protects Christians and Jews; as does Russia.

I can't say the same for the U.S.A., other than protecting Christians and Jews connected to Wall Street.

NA X-15 , 51 minutes ago link

From Day One, nobody believed the neocon ******** about the alleged "gassings".

[Oct 24, 2019] Indeed Orwell's "1984" referred to the UK as "Airstrip One" and this Brexit fiasco surely proves that Outside Influences not only run the Judiciary when necessary, but also plant poison on doorknobs when it suits them

Looks like the USA intelligence agencies are way too sophisticated now for their own good...
Oct 24, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

imo , Oct 24 2019 2:42 utc | 43

@8 Trailer Trash

Indeed Orwell's "1984" referred to the UK as "Airstrip One" and this Brexit fiasco surely proves that Outside Influences not only run the Judiciary when necessary, but also plant poison on doorknobs when it suits them.

The ever servile Australian government to the empire du jour does nothing to honor their passport pledge. We would have to assume it qualifies as Orwell's "Airstrip Two"

In contrast to Assange's predicament (and Manning I assume), the main point of this post is to mention the recent Joe Rogan interview of Edward Snowden (touting his book) -- http://podcasts.joerogan.net/podcasts/edward-snowden

Nearly three hours of mostly Snowden rambling on. I stayed with it to the end. A few items of interest but mostly just noise. I found him initially somewhat suspicious -- by the end I was more neutral. However, what a display of American arrogance and ingratitude. The Russian government has saved his bacon and has given him refuge with great freedoms he would not have in the USA -- or Airstrip One ... or, HK, or any South American backyard colony. And yet he makes no attempt to thank them and even virtually panders to the American anti-Russian meme. He has even dabbled in Russian opposition politics via local newspaper comments. What an ungrateful guest! (Or still an agent @ work?) I would entirely understand the Russians putting him on a plane back to the USA tomorrow. Ungrateful little character, imo. And says a lot about the way Americans treat the external world from inside their little fishbowl. Simply a doormat for convenience.

The main take away for me came towards the end where Snowden outlines the special legal conditions and laws that the US government enforces to control presentation of evidence in these cases. These same 'servant' thugs who are stepping into the now 3rd-world UK court system and pulling the strings on Australia's Assange. The same crew that Snowden worked with and blew the whistle on (apparently).

Snowden makes great bravado about being willing to go back to the USA and face the music -- if only he could say in court why he did it (something the legal Act prohibits apparently). In this, and a few other matters of history, I find him less than genuine. Is/was he a plant? .... I'm still out with the jury on that.

[Oct 23, 2019] the Novichok Chimera fades further caucus99percent

Oct 23, 2019 | caucus99percent.com

the Novichok™ Chimera fades further

wendy davis on Mon, 10/21/2019 - 9:19am

Dawn Sturgess, guardian photo

[Sep 22, 2019] Alleged Novichok victim Rowley seeks to sue Russia for $1.25 mln

Sep 22, 2019 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

Moscow Exile September 22, 2019 at 7:36 am

22 SEP, 12:25
Alleged Novichok victim Rowley seeks to sue Russia for $1.25 mln
According to Patrick Maguire, the lawyer of the British citizen, Rowley has continued to suffer from "serious side effects from the toxin he ingested"

"This has affected my life in a huge way. I want justice" -- Rowley.

[Sep 21, 2019] Poisoner In Chief Details The CIA s Secret Quest For Mind Control

Notable quotes:
"... Kinzer notes that the top-secret nature of Gottlieb's work makes it impossible to measure the human cost of his experiments. "We don't know how many people died, but a number did, and many lives were permanently destroyed," he says. Ultimately, Gottlieb concluded that mind control was not possible. Ultimately, Gottlieb concluded that mind control was not possible. After MK-ULTRA shut down, he went on to lead a CIA program that created poisons and high-tech gadgets for spies to use. Kinzer writes about Gottlieb and MK-ULTRA in his new book, Poisoner in Chief. ..."
"... Sidney Gottlieb, can now be seen as the man who brought LSD to America. He was the unwitting godfather of the entire LSD counterculture. ..."
"... In the early 1950s, he arranged for the CIA to pay $240,000 to buy the world's entire supply of LSD. He brought this to the United States, and he began spreading it around to hospitals, clinics, prisons and other institutions, asking them, through bogus foundations, to carry out research projects and find out what LSD was, how people reacted to it and how it might be able to be used as a tool for mind control. ..."
"... Whitey Bulger was one of the prisoners who volunteered for what he was told was an experiment aimed at finding a cure for schizophrenia. As part of this experiment, he was given LSD every day for more than a year. He later realized that this had nothing to do with schizophrenia and he was a guinea pig in a government experiment aimed at seeing what people's long-term reactions to LSD was. Essentially, could we make a person lose his mind by feeding him LSD every day over such a long period? ..."
"... Bulger wrote afterward about his experiences, which he described as quite horrific. He thought he was going insane. He wrote, "I was in prison for committing a crime, but they committed a greater crime on me." ..."
"... And towards the end of his life, Bulger came to realize the truth of what had happened to him, and he actually told his friends that he was going to find that doctor in Atlanta who was the head of that experiment program in the penitentiary and go kill him. ..."
"... The CIA mind control project, MK-ULTRA, was essentially a continuation of work that began in Japanese and Nazi concentration camps. Not only was it roughly based on those experiments, but the CIA actually hired the vivisectionists and the torturers who had worked in Japan and in Nazi concentration camps to come and explain what they had found out so that we could build on their research. ..."
"... For example, Nazi doctors had conducted extensive experiments with mescaline at the Dachau concentration camp, and the CIA was very interested in figuring out whether mescaline could be the key to mind control that was one of their big avenues of investigation. So they hired the Nazi doctors who had been involved in that project to advise them. ..."
"... CIA officers in Europe and Asia were capturing enemy agents and others who they felt might be suspected persons or were otherwise what they called "expendable." They would grab these people and throw them into cells and then test all kinds of, not just drug potions, but other techniques, like electroshock, extremes of temperature, sensory isolation -- all the meantime bombarding them with questions, trying to see if they could break down resistance and find a way to destroy the human ego. So these were projects designed not only to understand the human mind but to figure out how to destroy it. And that made Gottlieb, although in some ways a very compassionate person, certainly the most prolific torturer of his generation. ..."
"... [Gottlieb] operated almost completely without supervision. He had sort of a checkoff from his titular boss and from his real boss, Richard Helms, and from the CIA director, Allen Dulles. But none of them really wanted to know what he was doing. This guy had a license to kill. He was allowed to requisition human subjects across the United States and around the world and subject them to any kind of abuse that he wanted, even up to the level of it being fatal -- yet nobody looked over his shoulder. He never had to file serious reports to anybody. I think the mentality must have been [that] this project is so important -- mind control, if it can be mastered, is the key to global world power. ..."
"... The end of Gottlieb's career came in 1972, when his patron, Richard Helms, who was then director of the CIA, was removed by [President Richard] Nixon. Once Helms was gone, it was just a matter of time until Gottlieb would be gone, and most important was that Helms was really the only person at the CIA who had an idea of what Gottlieb had been doing. So as they were both on their way out of the CIA, they agreed that they should destroy all records of MK-ULTRA ..."
"... Gottlieb actually drove out to the CIA records center and ordered the archives to destroy boxes full of MK-ULTRA records. ... However, it turns out that there were some [records] found in other places; there was a depot for expense account reports that had not been destroyed, and various other pieces of paper remain. So there is enough out there to reconstruct some of what he did, but his effort to wipe away his traces by destroying all those documents in the early '70s was quite successful. ..."
Sep 09, 2019 | npr.org
Heard on Fresh Air Terry Gross

CIA chemist Sidney Gottlieb headed up the agency's secret MK-ULTRA program, which was charged with developing a mind control drug that could be weaponized against enemies.

Courtesy of the CIA

During the early period of the Cold War, the CIA became convinced that communists had discovered a drug or technique that would allow them to control human minds. In response, the CIA began its own secret program, called MK-ULTRA, to search for a mind control drug that could be weaponized against enemies.

MK-ULTRA, which operated from the 1950s until the early '60s, was created and run by a chemist named Sidney Gottlieb. Journalist Stephen Kinzer, who spent several years investigating the program, calls the operation the "most sustained search in history for techniques of mind control."

Some of Gottlieb's experiments were covertly funded at universities and research centers, Kinzer says, while others were conducted in American prisons and in detention centers in Japan, Germany and the Philippines. Many of his unwitting subjects endured psychological torture ranging from electroshock to high doses of LSD, according to Kinzer's research.

"Gottlieb wanted to create a way to seize control of people's minds, and he realized it was a two-part process," Kinzer says. "First, you had to blast away the existing mind. Second, you had to find a way to insert a new mind into that resulting void. We didn't get too far on number two, but he did a lot of work on number one."

The Picture Show Found In The Archives: Military LSD Testing

Kinzer notes that the top-secret nature of Gottlieb's work makes it impossible to measure the human cost of his experiments. "We don't know how many people died, but a number did, and many lives were permanently destroyed," he says. Ultimately, Gottlieb concluded that mind control was not possible.

Ultimately, Gottlieb concluded that mind control was not possible. After MK-ULTRA shut down, he went on to lead a CIA program that created poisons and high-tech gadgets for spies to use.

Kinzer writes about Gottlieb and MK-ULTRA in his new book, Poisoner in Chief.


Interview highlights Poisoner in Chief

Poisoner in Chief

Sidney Gottlieb and the CIA Search for Mind Control

by Stephen Kinzer

Hardcover, 354 pages |

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On how the CIA brought LSD to America

As part of the search for drugs that would allow people to control the human mind, CIA scientists became aware of the existence of LSD, and this became an obsession for the early directors of MK-ULTRA. Actually, the MK-ULTRA director, Sidney Gottlieb, can now be seen as the man who brought LSD to America. He was the unwitting godfather of the entire LSD counterculture.

In the early 1950s, he arranged for the CIA to pay $240,000 to buy the world's entire supply of LSD. He brought this to the United States, and he began spreading it around to hospitals, clinics, prisons and other institutions, asking them, through bogus foundations, to carry out research projects and find out what LSD was, how people reacted to it and how it might be able to be used as a tool for mind control.

Now, the people who volunteered for these experiments and began taking LSD, in many cases, found it very pleasurable. They told their friends about it. Who were those people? Ken Kesey , the author of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest , got his LSD in an experiment sponsored by the CIA by MK-ULTRA, by Sidney Gottlieb. So did Robert Hunter, the lyricist for the Grateful Dead, which went on to become a great purveyor of LSD culture. Allen Ginsberg , the poet who preached the value of the great personal adventure of using LSD, got his first LSD from Sidney Gottlieb. Although, of course, he never knew that name.

So the CIA brought LSD to America unwittingly, and actually it's a tremendous irony that the drug that the CIA hoped would be its key to controlling humanity actually wound up fueling a generational rebellion that was dedicated to destroying everything that the CIA held dear and defended.

On how MK-ULTRA experimented on prisoners, including crime boss Whitey Bulger

Whitey Bulger was one of the prisoners who volunteered for what he was told was an experiment aimed at finding a cure for schizophrenia. As part of this experiment, he was given LSD every day for more than a year. He later realized that this had nothing to do with schizophrenia and he was a guinea pig in a government experiment aimed at seeing what people's long-term reactions to LSD was. Essentially, could we make a person lose his mind by feeding him LSD every day over such a long period?

Meet 'The Brothers' Who Shaped U.S. Policy, Inside And Out

Author Interviews Meet 'The Brothers' Who Shaped U.S. Policy, Inside And Out

Bulger wrote afterward about his experiences, which he described as quite horrific. He thought he was going insane. He wrote, "I was in prison for committing a crime, but they committed a greater crime on me."

And towards the end of his life, Bulger came to realize the truth of what had happened to him, and he actually told his friends that he was going to find that doctor in Atlanta who was the head of that experiment program in the penitentiary and go kill him.

On the CIA hiring Nazi doctors and Japanese torturers to learn methods

The CIA mind control project, MK-ULTRA, was essentially a continuation of work that began in Japanese and Nazi concentration camps.

Stephen Kinzer, author of 'Poisoner in Chief'

The CIA mind control project, MK-ULTRA, was essentially a continuation of work that began in Japanese and Nazi concentration camps. Not only was it roughly based on those experiments, but the CIA actually hired the vivisectionists and the torturers who had worked in Japan and in Nazi concentration camps to come and explain what they had found out so that we could build on their research.

For example, Nazi doctors had conducted extensive experiments with mescaline at the Dachau concentration camp, and the CIA was very interested in figuring out whether mescaline could be the key to mind control that was one of their big avenues of investigation. So they hired the Nazi doctors who had been involved in that project to advise them.

Another thing the Nazis provided was information about poison gases like sarin, which is still being used. Nazi doctors came to America to Fort Detrick in Maryland, which was the center of this project, to lecture to CIA officers to tell them how long it took for people to die from sarin.

On the more extreme experiments Gottlieb conducted overseas

Gottlieb and the CIA established secret detention centers throughout Europe and East Asia, particularly in Japan, Germany and the Philippines, which were largely under American control in the period of the early '50s, and therefore Gottlieb didn't have to worry about any legal entanglements in these places. ...

CIA officers in Europe and Asia were capturing enemy agents and others who they felt might be suspected persons or were otherwise what they called "expendable." They would grab these people and throw them into cells and then test all kinds of, not just drug potions, but other techniques, like electroshock, extremes of temperature, sensory isolation -- all the meantime bombarding them with questions, trying to see if they could break down resistance and find a way to destroy the human ego. So these were projects designed not only to understand the human mind but to figure out how to destroy it. And that made Gottlieb, although in some ways a very compassionate person, certainly the most prolific torturer of his generation.

On how these experiments were unsupervised

This guy [Sidney Gottlieb] had a license to kill. He was allowed to requisition human subjects across the United States and around the world and subject them to any kind of abuse that he wanted, even up to the level of it being fatal -- yet nobody looked over his shoulder.

Stephen Kinzer

[Gottlieb] operated almost completely without supervision. He had sort of a checkoff from his titular boss and from his real boss, Richard Helms, and from the CIA director, Allen Dulles. But none of them really wanted to know what he was doing. This guy had a license to kill. He was allowed to requisition human subjects across the United States and around the world and subject them to any kind of abuse that he wanted, even up to the level of it being fatal -- yet nobody looked over his shoulder. He never had to file serious reports to anybody. I think the mentality must have been [that] this project is so important -- mind control, if it can be mastered, is the key to global world power.

On how Gottlieb destroyed evidence about his experiments when he left the CIA

The end of Gottlieb's career came in 1972, when his patron, Richard Helms, who was then director of the CIA, was removed by [President Richard] Nixon. Once Helms was gone, it was just a matter of time until Gottlieb would be gone, and most important was that Helms was really the only person at the CIA who had an idea of what Gottlieb had been doing. So as they were both on their way out of the CIA, they agreed that they should destroy all records of MK-ULTRA.

Gottlieb actually drove out to the CIA records center and ordered the archives to destroy boxes full of MK-ULTRA records. ... However, it turns out that there were some [records] found in other places; there was a depot for expense account reports that had not been destroyed, and various other pieces of paper remain. So there is enough out there to reconstruct some of what he did, but his effort to wipe away his traces by destroying all those documents in the early '70s was quite successful.

Sam Briger and Thea Chaloner produced and edited the audio of this interview. Bridget Bentz, Molly Seavy-Nesper and Meghan Sullivan adapted it for the Web.

Correction Sept. 9, 2019

A previous photo caption incorrectly referred to the CIA's MK-ULTRA program as MS-ULTRA.

[Sep 21, 2019] Spy vs Spy vs Spy The Mysterious Mr. Smolenkov

Notable quotes:
"... Or alternatively, Smolenkov might have been someone who was turned after recruitment or a genuine agent who was trying to respond to urgent demands from his controller in Washington, who was de facto ..."
"... Scott also believes, as do I, that the story was leaked because John Brennan and his associates knew that they were deliberately marketing phony intelligence on Russia to undermine Trump and are trying to preempt any investigation by Attorney General William Barr on the provenance of the Russiagate story. ..."
"... The reality is that spying is a highly creative profession, with operational twists and turns limited only by one's imagination. In this case, unless someone actually succeeds in interviewing Oleg Smolenkov and he decides to tell the complete truth as he sees it, the American public might never know the reality behind the latest spy story. ..."
Sep 21, 2019 | www.strategic-culture.org

The account that appeared in the mainstream media went something like this: A midlevel Russian official named Oleg Smolenkov was recruited decades ago by the CIA. He eventually wound up in an important office in the Kremlin that gave him access to President Vladimir Putin. Smolenkov was the principal source of information confirming that Russia, acting on Putin's instructions, was trying to interfere in the 2016 presidential election to defeat Hillary Clinton and elect Donald Trump. It was claimed that Smolenkov was actually able to photograph documents in Putin's desk. CIA concerns that a mole hunt in the Kremlin resulting from the media revelations concerning Russian interference in the election might lead to Smolenkov resulted in a 2016 offer to extract him and his family from Russia. This was successfully executed during a Smolenkov family vacation trip to Montenegro in 2017. The family now resides in Virginia.

The CNN story and other mainstream media that picked up on the tale embroidered it somewhat, suggesting that although Smolenkov was the CIA's crown jewel, the US has a number of "high level" spies in Moscow. It was also claimed that the timetable for the exfiltration was pushed forward by CIA in 2017 after it was noted that Donald Trump was particularly careless with classified information and might inadvertently reveal the existence of the source. The allegation about Trump carelessness came, according to CNN, after a May 2017 meeting between Trump and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in which the president reportedly shared sensitive information on Syria and ISIS that had been provided by Israel.

Variants of the CNN story appeared subsequently in the New York Times headlined C.I.A. Informant Extracted From Russia Had Sent Secrets to US for Decades , which confirmed that the extraction took place in 2017 though it also asserts that the decision to make the move came in 2016 when Barack Obama was still president.

Taibbi observes, correctly, that CNN and the other mainstream elements reporting the story elaborated on it through commentary coming from anonymous "former senior intelligence officials." As the networks have all hired ex-spooks, it raises the interesting possibility that employees of the media are themselves providing comments on intelligence operations that they were personally involved in, meaning that they might deliberately promote a narrative that does not cast them in a bad light.

Next morning's Washington Post story US got key asset out of Russia following election hacking touched all bases and also tried hard to implicate Trump. It confirmed 2016 as the time frame for the decision to carry out the exfiltration and also mentioned the president's talk with Lavrov in May 2017, though the meeting itself was not cited as the reason for the move. As Taibbi observes, "So why mention it?"

The Russians have denied that Smolenkov was an important official and have insisted that the whole story might be something of a fabrication. And the alleged CIA handling of the claimed top-level defector somewhat bears out that conclusion. Normally, a former top spy is resettled in the US or somewhere overseas in a fake name to protect him or her from any possible attempt at revenge by their former countrymen. In Smolenkov's case, easily public accessible online county real estate records indicate that he bought a $1 million house in Stafford Virginia in 2018 using his own true name .

If the Russians were truly conducting a mole hunt that endangered Smolenkov it may have been because the US media and their anonymous intelligence sources have been bragging about how they have "penetrated the Kremlin." A Washington Post June 2017 articled called " Obama's Secret Struggle to Punish Russia for Putin's Election Assault is typical. In that article , the author describes how CIA Director John Brennan secured a "feat of espionage" by running spies "deep within the Russian government" that revealed Russia's electoral interference.

So, the Smolenkov story has inconsistencies and one has to question why it was deliberately leaked at this time. The only constant in the media coverage is the repeated but completely evidence-free suggestion that the mole was endangered and had to be removed because of Donald Trump's inability to keep a secret. One has to consider the possibility that the story has been leaked at least in part due to the continuing effort by the national security state to "get Trump."

Highly recommended is former weapons inspector Scott Ritter's fascinating detailed dissection of Smolenkov's career as well as a history of the evolution of CIA spying against Russia . Scott speculates on why the leak of the story took place at all, examining a number of scenarios along the way. Smolenkov, who, according to former CIA officer Larry Johnson, has oddly never been polygraphed to establish his bona fides , might have been a double agent from the start, possibly a low level functionary allowed to work for the Americans so the Russian FSB intelligence service could feed low level information and control the narrative. It is a "dirty secret" within the Agency that many agents are recruited by case officers for no other reason than to enhance one's career. Such agents normally have no real access and provide little reporting.

Or alternatively, Smolenkov might have been someone who was turned after recruitment or a genuine agent who was trying to respond to urgent demands from his controller in Washington, who was de facto John Brennan, by producing a dramatic report that was basically fabricated. Or the story itself might be completely false, an attempt by some former and current officials at CIA to demonstrate a great success at a time when the intelligence community is under considerable pressure.

Scott also believes, as do I, that the story was leaked because John Brennan and his associates knew that they were deliberately marketing phony intelligence on Russia to undermine Trump and are trying to preempt any investigation by Attorney General William Barr on the provenance of the Russiagate story. If it can be demonstrated somehow that the claims of Kremlin interference came from a highly regarded credible Russian source then Brennan and company can claim that they acted in good faith. Of course, that tale might break down if anyone bothers to interview Smolenkov.

Another theory that I tend to like is that the CIA might be making public the Smolenkov case in an attempt to lower the heat on another actual high-level source still operating in Moscow. If Russia can be convinced that Smolenkov was the only significant spy working in the Kremlin it might ratchet down efforts to find another mole. It is an interesting theory worthy of spy vs. spy, but one can be pretty sure that Russian counterintelligence has already thought of that possibility and will not be fooled.

The reality is that spying is a highly creative profession, with operational twists and turns limited only by one's imagination. In this case, unless someone actually succeeds in interviewing Oleg Smolenkov and he decides to tell the complete truth as he sees it, the American public might never know the reality behind the latest spy story.

[Sep 14, 2019] How The BBC's Quentin Sommerville Created Fairytales Of Underground Hospitals In Syria

Notable quotes:
"... Every terrorist hideout is a hospital so please don't let those mean Russians and Syrian army men hurt them. ..."
"... Someone mentioned the White Helmets. Here's a picture of a White Helmet leader hanging out with "Hong Kong protest figurehead Joshua Wong" and a Ukrainian mayor at a shindig in Berlin. No doubt it was organized and paid for by Uncle Sam and his trillion-dollar-per-year deficit. ..."
"... I wonder if Hong Kong protesters know that Wong is partying in safety and comfort while they are risking their lives by attacking police and getting beat up. ..."
Sep 14, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

How The BBC's Quentin Sommerville Created Fairytales Of Underground Hospitals In Syria

In August 2013 the BBC produced a fake video headlined "Saving Syria's Children" about an alleged chemical weapon attack in Syria which it claimed was caused by the Syrian government. Robert Stuart has since pressed the BBC to admit the obvious fabrication of these scenes .

Today the BBC posted on its website another Syria clip under the title Idlib's secret hospitals hiding from air strikes :

Air strikes have been targeting hospitals in the rebel-held province of Idlib, Syria, despite the fact that it is a war crime. Medics have been forced underground in order to survive.

The UN accuses the Syrian government and allied Russian warplanes of conducting a deadly campaign that appears to target medical facilities.

BBC's Middle East correspondent, Quentin Sommerville, visits one hospital in a secret location.

Sommerville starts with standing next to a destroyed building claiming that it has been a hospital that was bombed. He says: "This is the only building that was targeted here."

It isn't the "only building that was targeted" there. It is the only building that was there. The building is standing within an orchard. There are no other buildings or infrastructure around it. Why would anyone have built a hospital far from a town? There are no signs that building ever was a hospital and is doubtful that it was one.

The next shot has been shown in other TV clips (on Channel 4?). It shows the entrances to some caves but no car, no persons and nothing else is around it.

Suddenly six explosions happen at the very same time. Immediately after the explosions, but not before them, the sound of a passing jet is heard. I have never heard or seen of a jet that manages to release six bombs that land in such a tight pattern and explode all at the very same time. Compare the impact pattern and explosion timing with this recent U.S. carpet bombing (vid) of an island in Iraq. And why please was the camera in place that made such a tight shot of it? This was clearly a stunt made with some buried explosives that were centrally ignited at the same time. The jet noise was later added to the shot. In the next scene two people walk down a concrete stairway within a regular building.

The scene cuts to one filmed at the entrance of roughly dug cave while the reporter insinuates that both are the same.

The reporter claims that the cave is a hospital. He walks further down the stairs into the cave ... and ends up in a well built building with straight painted walls and a nice balustrade. This might be a hospital but there is no sign that it is one. What is certain is that it is not underground or in a cave.

The whole claim of the BBC clip is that the hospitals are underground because they get bombed. But the part that is supposed to prove that is clearly cut from a real building scene to a walk down into a cave scene and back to a real building scene. The sequence is clearly a propaganda fake.

The clip continues with Sommerville talking to some 'doctor' who answers in Arabic.

Then follow scenes from the Atmah Charity Hospital which is a real hospital. It lies north of Idleb city and right next to the Turkish border near the Olive Tree refugee camp near the town of Atmah . It is sponsored by Orient Charity , established by the Syrian anti-Assad businessman Ghassan Aboud who lives in the UAE, and is operated by the Muslim Brotherhood aligned Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS). Ghassan Aboud also owns Orient News which is a Jihadist outlet . There follow the typical pictures of injured children which are used to create more hate against the Syrian government and the millions of children it protects from the U.S. sponsored Jihadists attacks.

On his Twitter account Quentin Sommerville posted another version of his Idleb tale. It is longer and the cut differs significantly from the clip on the BBC website.

Some scenes are similar. The 'bombed hospital' is there. The fake 'bombing' of the caves is also in it. The interview scene with the Arabic speaking doctor in the 'underground hospital' is missing in this version but the same person reappears.

Sommerville speaks with the UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Syria about the coordination system for hospitals. The hospitals are supposed to tell the UN there geographic coordinates which the UN then hands to Russia with the request not to bomb those places. The UN's Pomos Moumtzis defends the system. Sommerville claims that 40 such hospitals have been bombed in recent months. Syria's Idleb governorate never had that many hospitals.

What is happening here is that the Jihadis, with whom Sommerville traveled and who he rightly says are seen as terrorist even by the 'west', report the coordinates of their headquarters and weapon depots as hospitals. The UN has no way to check their claims. When the Russian or Syrian airforce then bomb those places the Jihadis claim that their hospitals were hit.

There are more false sequences in the longer clip Sommerville tweeted.

At 4:27 the cameraman rides on the back of a motorcycle through a covered alley or basement into a 'hospital entrance'. More than a dozen motorcycles are parked there and there is professional ventilation.

It is the very same 'underground hospital' and the same Arabic speaking 'doctor' as in the first clip. Notice that the 'doctor' rode his motorcycle through town while wearing his supposedly clean clinic clothes.

Sommerville narrates: "This hospital is very deep out of reach of the bombs. We were told to move fast too."

The above scene cuts to two men running down a basement stairway seemingly from the hospital. It is the same stairway as in the first clip but filmed from a slightly different perspective and in a different take.

Summerville continues: "Even under this solid rock we await the next attack." The scene cuts to two men running down an underground tunnel with rough walls.

It is the same tunnel as in the first clip.

The sequence as a whole makes no sense. If the hospital is 'out of reach of the bombs' why run further down from it?

In the first clip the storyline around the same 'underground hospital' is the opposite of the storyline in the second version. In the first clip the reporter walks first down the stairway and then down the rough tunnel to allegedly reach the 'underground hospital'. In the second longer clip the reporters leave from the 'underground hospital' down the stairway and further down into the rough cut tunnel to be more safe from bombs.

Which is the real sequence Mr. Sommerville? Is the hospital at the lower end of the rough wall tunnel or is it at the upper end? Could you please make up your mind?

At 5:00 min Sommerville says that he travels further south towards the frontline escorted by the Jihadist controlled 'Salvation government'. The scene cuts to a drone shot of a refugee camp insinuating that it is in the same southern area. But the camp is like all refugee camps in Idleb in the north directly at the Turkish border. The border wall which Turkey erected can be clearly seen behind it. The place is far from the frontline.

The two Sommerville videos show how the BBC works. First a politically wanted narrative is created. Scenes are then taken and cut into sequences that fit that narrative. The same or similar scenes can be used to create a different version of the same narrative or even a completely different one. Neither of those narratives needs to be anywhere near the realities on the ground.

Unfortunately many people fall for such cheap propaganda junk.

Posted by b on September 13, 2019 at 19:36 UTC | Permalink


anna , Sep 13 2019 20:08 utc | 1

Underground Idlib Bit long.. https://youtu.be/i_5Cid-Po9k?t=32
Jen , Sep 13 2019 20:32 utc | 4
It seems that in its zeal to keep staffing costs down amid public calls to revoke the compulsory annual BBC licence fee payment required of all UK subjects who own TV sets, and to maintain its relevance, the BBC has told its crime and thriller drama script-writers to write the news plot narratives and gets gullible twats like Somerville to act them out with extras drawn from the Syrian White Helmets Academy of Dramatic Arts. Pyrotechnic effects underwritten by Saudi Arabia and ultimately by British taxpayers who should be asking for their money back: they should not be paying the BBC twice to produce such shoddy garbage.
b , Sep 13 2019 20:48 utc | 5
On yesterday's longer BBC piece not available to an international audience:

Ollie Richardson @O_Rich_

Thread on the @BBC
's latest (12.09.19) edition of propaganda designed to mask the UK's role in arming and financing Al Qaeda in Syria. A BBC broadcast was imposed on me, but I recorded this segment anticipating that a pack of lies was coming. Here is part 1/3 of the skit: ...
alaff , Sep 13 2019 20:49 utc | 6
Sommerville claims that 40 such hospitals have been bombed in recent months. Syria's Idleb governorate never had that many hospitals.

But... But... You forgot a map of hospitals in Idleb. :D

ben , Sep 13 2019 21:19 utc | 7
The disinformation is endless with regards to the Syrian war. Especially from the anti-Assad camp. We all know who are the most prolific bombers of hospitals and civilian infrastructure, and those are the empire and their minions.

http://www.brianwillson.com/the-us-american-way-of-war-intentional-killing-of-civilians-and-civilian-infrastructure/

goldhoarder , Sep 13 2019 21:27 utc | 8
Every terrorist hideout is a hospital so please don't let those mean Russians and Syrian army men hurt them.
Jackrabbit , Sep 13 2019 21:29 utc | 9
Why continue propaganda ops after US claimed to kill the Idlib Jihadi leadership in an airstrike? LOL. High probability that the airstrike was also propaganda so that they can claim that it's the people of Idlib that are resisting SAA+Russians now, not Jihadis.
Cochore , Sep 13 2019 21:53 utc | 10
The cameraman for this fabrication was Darren Conway. He is the same person responsible for the BBC Panorama faux-documentary "Saving Syria's Children" that was broadcast on 30th September, 2013 and which has been exposed as a fake by the tireless work of Robert Stuart. https://bbcpanoramasavingsyriaschildren.wordpress.com/
so , Sep 13 2019 22:10 utc | 11
How do these people live with themselves? Get up every morning and spew lies. Take the kids to school and feed the dog. Not knowing the ramification of their actions and the lives that their actions cost. I guess that's the life you lead when everything is attached to the value of money. So much illness in this world.
Choderlos de Laclos , Sep 13 2019 22:24 utc | 12
BBC is in hot contest for der Spiegel's Claas Relotius prize: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-46624297

Keep it up boys!

Robert Stuart , Sep 13 2019 22:38 utc | 13
As noted above, this is basically the 2013 BBC Panorama Saving Syria's Children (SSC) team, with Sommerville substituting for Ian Pannell, who left the BBC in 2017 and now works with ABC, plus SSC cameraman Darren Conway (OBE) and SSC "fixer/translator" Mughira Al Sharif, who is credited with "camera" in the first Sommerville clip (in addition to Conway?), and about whom more here: https://bbcpanoramasavingsyriaschildren.wordpress.com/#Sharif

The SSC crew used then-ISIS partners Ahrar al-Sham for security in 2013 and filmed a vehicle bearing the ISIS flag at comfortably close quarters:
http://bbcpanoramasavingsyriaschildren.wordpress.com/2017/07/09/bbc-panorama-team-embedded-with-islamic-state-partner-group/
https://bbcpanoramasavingsyriaschildren.wordpress.com/2017/12/13/bbc-panorama-on-location-with-isis/

Ian , Sep 13 2019 22:40 utc | 14
so @11:
Their actions may not always be driven by money but by an ideology. Getting wealthy in the process would be a bonus.
karlof1 , Sep 14 2019 0:22 utc | 29
Outstanding work, b! This is exactly what's being advocated by Caitlin Johnstone, advocated by many of us barflies, and consistently practiced by you--Destroying the Empire's BigLie Media Narratives. ICYMI, here's her essay on that topic . The following is from a thread about a topic related to American Exceptionalism that as noted is seldom discussed American Privilege :

"American privilege is having your insane culture normalized around the world via Hollywood and other media so that nobody stops and wonders why we're letting this bat shit crazy nation rule our planet, and so no one makes you feel bad about your American privilege."

And before American Privilege there was the British version: The White Man's Burden. We get a taste of what the modern version of British Privilege would be from BBC propaganda. Both intended to globally project their Cultural Imperialism in both an offensive and defensive capacity with the Outlaw US Empire's efforts being the most successful. As shown by the BRICS efforts I posted and linked to, there's an increasing effort to promote a countervailing system of humanist values, which is a component in combating the Hybrid Third World War in which we're all involved .

james , Sep 14 2019 1:17 utc | 30
thanks b... great breakdown on the bbc bullshite... why is the usa-uk-israel-ksa clan paying so many millions for this cheap shit?? you would think with all their connections they could fabricate better bullshit... you link @5 is embarrassing for them.. i guess they figure only dim twats swallow the pablum bbc offers.. thanks for your work...
Anon , Sep 14 2019 1:51 utc | 31
Here's how it works:

You beg the "rebels" to grant you access and then you are escorted around shown that which they want you to see, and then they give you video clips to use and you do the story on their terms. Kind of like the days of Like North Korea where reporters are escorted by a minder and kept on a short leash. It will n North Korea, reporters push the envelope and report only on the oppressiveness of the regime, and never tell their audience things like there is fairly good education, healthcare, and their manufacturing base is sophisticated enough to make their own smart phones. In Syria, reporters never vary from the script the hosts present them. It's not only because they won't be invited back, it's because they will be murdered. Remember the early stages of the war? Remember how many journalists were being killed? What were those journalists reporting? Why the truth of course.

Trailer Trash , Sep 14 2019 2:18 utc | 32
Someone mentioned the White Helmets. Here's a picture of a White Helmet leader hanging out with "Hong Kong protest figurehead Joshua Wong" and a Ukrainian mayor at a shindig in Berlin. No doubt it was organized and paid for by Uncle Sam and his trillion-dollar-per-year deficit.

I wonder if Hong Kong protesters know that Wong is partying in safety and comfort while they are risking their lives by attacking police and getting beat up.

JW , Sep 14 2019 2:23 utc | 33
Don't these propaganda clowns know they the more desperate they are at creating false narratives, the more they are losing credibility? Everyone outside the western circle of sheeple are more wary than ever about the CIA's fingers on just about everything.
psychohistorian , Sep 14 2019 2:31 utc | 34
Thanks for continuing to write truth to power b

The mighty propaganda machine of the West continues to crank out fake news for the Plato's Cave displays of the brainwashed and addicted. Ongoing control and projection of the narrative is necessary to keep the weak holding on for dear life to the Merry-Go-Round of the Western "culture".

Blessings to those that keep trying to throw spanners in the works to make the insanity stop.

Montreal , Sep 14 2019 5:33 utc | 37
In the old days, in London, when I wanted to check current affairs from different angles, I turned to the Guardian, Channel 4 News, and the BBC. People may remember, for example, the fearful row about the BBC's reporting of the Falklands War - because it was trying to be even-handed it was accused by Thatcher's government of helping the Argentinians.

Anyone interested in these things knows that each of those news outlets has - over the last couple of years - been nobbled by the enemy. I don't even know what to call the enemy - NATO? The Neo-Cons? What is shocking is the ruthless, no-expense-spared, fury with which the enemy spreads its lies. They take this propaganda war very seriously indeed.

It is a slight consolation that the BBC is spending its capital - its reputation in the world for fairness and objectivity - at a tremendous rate., if it is fairness and objectivity in current affairs you are looking for, nowadays you don't go.to the BBC.

pppp , Sep 14 2019 6:29 utc | 40
anna@1
Underground Idlib

My first thought was who dug those tunnels and where are these people now. I mean, where are buried. I seriously doubt fighters would dug all that themselves nor they would set witnesses free. Yet reports about forced labor are scarce, which is not that surprising as a couple missing persons would go unnoticed in refugees rush.

As the reference research WW2 German Riese project tunnels, forced labor and killing of laborers when Red Amy approached.

Igor Bundy , Sep 14 2019 6:36 utc | 41
As the video posted by Anna shows, the terrorists had offices and hospitals in caves. Why is a good question since Anna clearly shows that the Russians watch and only bomb places where terrorists store ammo and rockets. Also why the terrorists defenses crumble so fast. Obviously there is no carpet bombing because Russia dont have the planes for it. And for the bombing to be so effective, those must have been stores for equipment. Bombing 40 hospitals wont make the terrorists crumble. But 40 stores of supplies would.

The bigger question is, some of those caves have tiled walls and obviously took great effort. Its like the pyramids of Egypt but without the slave labor of the jews to build it.. Who pays for it??? A few I can understand but there are hundreds of such caves. Obviously a single bomb to the entrance would kill everyone inside no matter how big it is by sucking out all the air and the concussion. The Japanese learnt of this the hard way.. It also leaves the equipment intact for later use by the SAA.

BM , Sep 14 2019 6:44 utc | 42
Has anybody seen a coherent explanation of the real situation on the ground at the Rukban regugee camp near Al Tanf? Especially one that gives a balanced view of the constraints the refugees are under, how UN aid is getting in, and what access the Russians are getting to the area?

This article states that some 17,000 refugees left in August with assistance from the Russian and Syrian governments, but some 25,000 remain:

"Back in August, Russia's Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations Dmitry Polyanskiy said that over 17,000 civilians had already left the camp with the assistance of Moscow and Damascus.

The Syrian government and the Russian reconciliation centre have been assisting those wishing to leave the camp."

Given that the conditions are so bad, and the refugees are allegedly held against their will by jihadis, why would 25,000 still remain, if 17,000 were able to leave? Are they unable to make up their minds? Are they denied access to a part of the camp the Russians reached to help people get out? Are they actually jihadi families? There is something seriously missing from all the reports I have read.

Maximus , Sep 14 2019 10:35 utc | 50
Interesting from the Jerusalem Post ... interesting pic too...
john , Sep 14 2019 10:55 utc | 51
Compare the impact pattern and explosion timing with this recent carpet bombing (vid) of an island in Iraq

yeah, could these be penultimate eruptions, effete blasts from the man ostensibly on top? the Iraqi officers at 0:35 look kinda horrified to me, or at least a little worried.

....

only a psychotic culture does everything in its power to disrupt the physical and mental well-being of all sentient beings, while simultaneously striving to protect everyone from everything all the time.

Hmpf , Sep 14 2019 12:41 utc | 54
The cave attack, while having some issues, seems to be legit on a preliminary examination. A frame by frame examination shows there's 3 distinct missiles impacting the site. The first hits almost dead center (the missile itself is visible in a frame, its shadow in the following frame), the second one hits to the left at the edge of the compound (clearly visible in 2 frames) and the third one hits closer to the camera (visible in 1 frame), the one creating the expanding dome when exploding.
All warheads go off 4-5 frames after impact which suggests ignition delay of 0.15-0,2 seconds which would be reasonable for such a device.

Video properties of downloaded BBC clip (from Youtube)
1280x720, 25 fps

There's a couple of issues with the clip (some curious artifacts) that might suggests it's been tampered with but, I believe, that would need a qualified person in forensic analysis of such material to determine if this indeed is true.

NotBob , Sep 14 2019 13:14 utc | 56
Another humorous aspect to the BBC is even though they collect the fee from every British TV set, the 'sponsored content' and downright clickbait on each page is up to around 20%, plus the footer 'Why You Can Trust the BBC' .
arby , Sep 14 2019 13:19 utc | 58
A User

"What sort of an a-hole would you have to be to steal trillions from people then delight in keeping them impoverished, oppressed, without access to education, housing or healthcare? "

I have been thinking about that lately and not just the Saud's. Poor, hungry, uneducated, oppressed people are much easier to manipulate and easily bought to do the dirty work of terror, killing and war. Keeping people in that impoverished state is intentional for the elite that do not want to actually do the dirty work.

" I can hire one half of the working class to kill the other half." Jay Gould

Canthama , Sep 14 2019 13:57 utc | 60
UK's link to al Qaeda is clear for decades, same link Israel, KSA< Qatar, Turkey and US all have, but the UK is definitively ahead here, very deep ties. By now the whole world knows BBC is UK' regime mouthpiece and made several fake news pretending Syrian & Russian Gov to be committing war crimes, where if fact the UK is actually deep sunk in war crimes or crimes against humanity in Libya, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Afghanistan, Ukraine and most recently in HK. The only way this crimes will stop is to hurt the UK where it hurts the most, their financial industry, hit it hard and the lion will turn into sheep, maybe the recent attacks in Saudi Barbaria's oil facility will do just that, but a game change financial collapse must happen in the City so funds to support global terrorism is stopped.

Thank you b for this compelling piece.

Sam , Sep 14 2019 14:01 utc | 61
I saw this piece on BBC World Report, the free satellite channel, and even without doing any research, it struck me as incredibly weird. Notice even in your screenshot that there's a shot of the "underground" hospital with a window and some people walking around outside in broad daylight(!). Plus the reporter goes on and on about how the tunnels are all "hand-dug" but then they turn the corner and he's inside a very modern-looking facility.

One note - when I saw this on TV, they had captions underneath (black line at the bottom) naming the hospitals as the (perfectly stable, ground-level) footage of them "being blown up" rolled. Didn't see the captions on your screenshots, tho.

Reminds me of all those pure fantasies they used to talk about in 2001 about Osama's multi-level underground super fortress in Afghanistan.

Mishko , Sep 14 2019 14:20 utc | 63
The proof is in the pudding, the propaganda is in the editing. My own cognitive dissonance was such that I used to view Panorama as a flagship
of responsible/respectable journalism. While knowing that the BBC is part of the Westminster pedophile ring and its coverup.
OMG witch-hunt! Must not witch-hunt! Bunch of anti-semitism-tossers, the lot of 'em.
Mishko , Sep 14 2019 14:24 utc | 64
It was a wise man who said:"The truth is in the movies, the lies are in the news."
All too often I find myself agreeing with him.
Hoarsewhisperer , Sep 14 2019 15:11 utc | 65
ABC.net.au broadcast this half-baked BBC tosh on 3 of its 4 TV Channels - ABC 2, ABC News24 and ABC Comedy22.

Forgive the levity but my reaction to having endured it for the third time was: "Whoa! Sour grapes? Much?"

The sleazy Poms haven't looked this frustrated, helpless and stupid since they were the recipients of a very skillful Massacre Lesson in Afghanistan in 1842. One wonders how much arm-twisting was required to persuade the producers of "Pointless" & "Would I Lie To You?" that making stuff up about Assad and Russia might help viewers to forget that Russia and Assad have been shredding the Judeo-Christian Colonial Conspiracy since Russia waded in 48 months ago?

CJ , Sep 14 2019 21:20 utc | 68
Hi,
I thought there was something really odd about this BBC piece. The opening shot shows a `bombed hospital'. So where is all the medical waste, broken equipment, beds, old dressings, gloves, IV sets etc. Even in a simple first aid post the medical waste sure piles up. In an emergency you need a team just to move this stuff and keep things clean and functional. There is nothing to suggest its a hospital or even a clinic. In future they should grab a bag of medical waste a throw it around! I sure am getting pissed off with this propaganda -- everything from WMD, yellow cake, aluminum tubes through to Russia gate-- its cost trillions and wasted so much time.
Arioch , Sep 15 2019 0:41 utc | 69
In a world first, renowned consultant David Nott gave remote instructions via Skype and WhatsApp which allowed doctors to carry out surgery in an underground hospital.

But, after footage was broadcast by the BBC, Mr Nott believes his computer was targeted, allowing hackers to gain the coordinates of the M10 hospital.

Weeks later a "bunker buster" bomb destroyed the M10

Posted by: Arod | Sep 13 2019 23:52 utc

Because, you know, everyone knows, when Russian Hackers want to break into someone's computer they just point their BBC TV remote on screen and preess the red button. And here we go, from TV to the computer filmed. Better than with Harry Potter.

And then, it is all because of Skype. Microsoft keeps broadcasting GPS coordinated (even of deeply underground facilities) of everyone talking by Skype. And Whatsapp too.

UK MSM: Mad Skillz meme meeting Cool Story Bro meme
UK population: target audience that ia worth nothing more reasonable

Sad...

[Sep 11, 2019] What can the Russians do to get ahead of the narrative on the likely impending demise of Smolenkov by novichok or polonium poisoning?

Sep 11, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

William Gruff , Sep 11 2019 15:50 utc | 60

What can the Russians do to get ahead of the narrative on the likely impending demise of Smolenkov by novichok or polonium poisoning?

I know some here might say "Everyone would know it is a false flag if Smolenkov gets assassinated!" and that is certainly true if by "everyone" one means the regular readers here and at a few other analysis sites that are not controlled by the empire.

The concern is about the three hundred million other Americans who are at least partially captured by the false narratives pumped out non-stop from their Plato's Cave displays. Is there anything that the Russians can do now to inoculate some Americans against the hard sell they will be facing when the corporate mass media ( Mighty Wurlitzer ) cranks up the multi-channel marketing campaign for the United States' own Skripal farce?

[Sep 11, 2019] On possible Oleg Smolenkov connection to Steele dossier

Sep 10, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

librul , Sep 10 2019 19:54 utc | 19

Is someone brewing up some fresh Novichok nerve agent as we speak?

Don't touch those doorknobs, Oleg!

for future reference: this post was for amusement purposes only

[Aug 20, 2019] They just can't get enough of that Novichok

I never suspected that UK authorities will be such obvious idiots. This is a clear sign of complete degeneration of the UK elite.
Aug 15, 2019 | telegraph.co.uk

A new victim's been discovered!

'Second officer was poisoned with Novichok in Salisbury incident, police reveal', ,

"Counter Terrorism Detectives, who are investigating the nerve agent attack in 2018, have confirmed that traces of Novichok have been found in a blood sample which was taken at the time from a second police officer.

The officer from Wiltshire Police, who does not wish to be identified , was involved in the response to the poisoning of Sergei and Yulia Skripal.

The Telegraph understands the male officer displayed signs at the time of the incident that indicated exposure to a very small amount of Novichok .

He received appropriate medical treatment at the time and returned to duties shortly afterwards.

A police spokesman told the Telegraph the officer was part of the initial response.

Forensic examination of the officer's blood sample, taken in March 2018, has since been carried out by scientists at the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory.

The forensic test – which uses a different method to that used to assess the clinical effects of nerve agent poisoning – has now given detectives confirmation that traces of Novichok were present.

The officer, the fourth person to be confirmed through forensic testing as a victim of the initial Salisbury attack, has been informed and continues to receive support from Wiltshire Police along with other officers and staff affected by the events in Salisbury and Amesbury last year."

Well, now that number depends on Gina Haspel's report about the dead ducks and sick children poisoned by the Novichoked bread the Skripals had been tossing to the ducks, doesn't it? But Officer Nick Baily was allegedly #5.

"The spokesman said: "some of the other police officers that attended the scene may have been exposed, but it is possible to find forensic traces [of Novichok] in blood that have no health implications at the time". [snip]

"The UK expelled 23 Russian diplomats and the US expelled 60 more in retaliation for poisoning of Sergei and Yulia Skripal in March last year, blaming the Russian military intelligence service, the GRU, for the botched assassination attempt."

From the link above:

'British authorities are confident they know "everything worth knowing" about the assassination attempt on Sergei Skripal, including a trail right up to Vladimir Putin."


"The Russian intelligence agency behind the Salisbury nerve agent attack has been dismantled in the UK [<Moscow spins webb of lies] and will remain out of action for years to come, according to government sources.

The threat posed by the GRU, which carried out the attempted assassination of Skripal last March, has been severely curtailed as a result of the counter-terror investigation that exposed the agents who carried out the attack.'

"Counter-terror police working with the intelligence services were able to piece together the plot to murder Colonel Skripal, a former GRU officer who had sold secrets to MI6, using CCTV, including footage from the streets close to the Col Skripal's home in Salisbury, and from passenger flight manifests and immigration data at the time of the attempted hit."

(with photos of GRU Boris and Natasha)

'Novichok Sickened 2nd British Officer, Police Say', August 15, 2019 , nytimes.com, Anna Schaverien

"Another officer, Detective Sgt. Nick Bailey, became critically ill after going to Mr. Skripal's home to investigate the attack. Mr. Skripal, a former colonel in Russia's military intelligence, and his daughter, Yulia, had been found unconscious and slumped on a bench.

Sergeant Bailey, who made contact with the nerve agent through the house's door handle, made a full recovery. Last Sunday, he ran a marathon to raise money for the intensive-care unit at the hospital where he was treated.

Two other people, Dawn Sturgess and Charlie Rowley, also suffered high levels of exposure to Novichok as a result of the poisoning. They were accidentally exposed to residue in Amesbury, a town near Salisbury, months after the initial episode .

Both were critically sickened on July 1 when Ms. Sturgess sprayed a substance that she thought was [Nina Ricci l'air du Novichoque ] perfume onto her wrist from a bottle that Mr. Rowley, her boyfriend, had found. Investigators believe the vial was used to transport the Novichok that poisoned the Skripals. Mr. Rowley survived, but Ms. Sturgess died .

In the wake of the attack, tensions escalated to their highest pitch in decades between Britain and Russia, which London blamed for the poisoning. Moscow denied any involvement." [snip]

"The European Union placed economic sanctions on the two suspects and two senior Russian military intelligence officials in January. And this month President Trump signed an executive order imposing new sanctions on Russia over the episode."

From the Aug. 1 NYT : 'Mr. Trump has been reluctant to take punitive actions against Russia, instead seeking better relations with Moscow despite its well-documented interference in the 2016 election.

But in recent weeks, lawmakers from both sides of the aisle have criticized his administration's delay in taking what they have called legally mandated action to follow up on sanctions imposed last August.' [snip]

On Monday, the top Democrat and Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee sent a joint letter to the White House threatening new congressional action to force the administration's hand.

"Failure by the administration to respond to Russia's unabashed aggression is unacceptable and would necessitate that Congress take corrective action," wrote the members, Eliot L. Engel, Democrat of New York, and Michael McCaul, Republican of Texas.

The law provided the administration with numerous sanctions to choose from. The executive order released by the White House on Thursday banned loans or other assistance to Russia by international financial institutions and prohibited most loans from American banks to Russia's government."

"They are suspected groundlessly," the Kremlin's spokesman told reporters when the European Union imposed travel bans and asset freezes on the suspects. " We have still not heard any evidence ."

A year after the poisoning, and after 13,000 hours of cleaning, the British government announced that the decontamination of the former Skripal home was complete. But the investigation into the attack continues.

"There are parts of the picture that we are continuing to piece together," the Metropolitan Police statement said."

All of which begs the question: what new sanctions will the US and UK levy on Russia? Of course we'll never know where Sergei and Yulia are, will we?

And sure we remember when they raised a new roof because some of that Novichok gel (or was it a spray?) on the Skripal's front door knob migrated upstairs into the attic or something

This may have been my favorite story, though: ' Public toilet in Salisbury 'may have been used by Russian agents to prepare deadly Novichok', themirror.co./uk.com , Aug. 4, 2018

"A public toilet may be where Russian agents mixed deadly Novichok used to try and assassinate ex-spy Sergei Skripal , according to reports .

It is thought Met Police counter terror cops are investigating the likelihood that the assassins smuggled the components to the nerve agent into the country then mixed it in a public toilet in Salisbury.

Forensic teams have discovered low-level contamination in toilets in the city's Queen Elizabeth Gardens."

But I'll turn it over to BBC news : 'BBC to dramatise Salisbury Novichok poisoning', 17 May 2019 , bbc.com/news

"The new drama is being written by Adam Patterson and Declan Lawn who said in a joint statement: "We feel extremely privileged to be telling this story.

"Extensive, meticulous research is at the heart of how we like to work and we've been overwhelmed by the generosity of the people of Salisbury who have opened up to us over the past few months and continue to do so."

Piers Wenger, controller of BBC Drama, added: "The poisonings in Salisbury shocked the nation and had a huge impact on an unsuspecting community.

"This drama will capture the bravery, resilience and personal experience of the local people who faced a situation of unimaginable horror, so close to home."

Casting for the drama is yet to be announced."

An historical bonus from the good Ambassador: ' Pure: Ten Points I Just Can't Believe About the Official Skripal Narrative', March 7, 2109, Craig Murray, craigmurray .org; a few snippets:

"I still do not know what happened in the Skripal saga, which perhaps might more respectfully be termed the Sturgess saga. I cannot believe the Russian account of Boshirov and Petrov, because if those were their real identities, those identities would have been firmly established and displayed by now. But that does not mean they attempted to kill the Skripals, and there are many key elements to the official British account which are also simply incredible.

Governments play dark games, and a dark game was played out in Salisbury which involved at least the British state, Russian agents (possibly on behalf of the state), Orbis Intelligence and the BBC. Anybody who believes it is simple to identify the "good guys" and the "bad guys" in this situation is a fool. When it comes to state actors and the intelligence services, frequently there are no "good guys", as I personally witnessed from the inside over torture, extraordinary rendition and the illegal invasion of Iraq. But in the face of a massive media campaign to validate the British government story about the Skripals, here are ten of the things I do not believe in the official account:

3) Nursing Care

The very first person to discover the Skripals ill on a park bench in Salisbury just happened to be the Chief Nurse of the British Army , who chanced to be walking past them on her way back from a birthday party. How lucky was that? The odds are about the same as the chance of my vacuum cleaner breaking down just before James Dyson knocks at my door to ask for directions. There are very few people indeed in the UK trained to give nursing care to victims of chemical weapon attack, and of all the people who might have walked past, it just happened to be the most senior of them!

The government is always trying to get good publicity for its armed forces, and you would think that the heroic role of its off-duty personnel in saving random poisoned Russian double agents they just happened to chance across, would have been proclaimed as a triumph for the British military. Yet it was kept secret for ten months. We were not told about the involvement of Colonel Alison McCourt until January of this year, when it came out by accident. Swollen with maternal pride, Col. McCourt nominated her daughter for an award from the local radio station for her role in helping give first aid to the Skripals, and young Abigail revealed her mother's identity on local radio – and the fact her mother was there "with her" administering first aid."

6) Mark Urban/Pablo Miller

The BBC's "Diplomatic Editor" is a regular conduit for the security services. He fronted much of the BBC's original coverage of the Skripal story. Yet he concealed from the viewers the fact that he had been in regular contact with Sergei Skripal for months before the alleged poisoning, and had held several meetings with Skripal.

This is extraordinary behaviour. It was the biggest news story in the world, and news organisations, including the BBC, were scrambling to fill in the Skripals' back story. Yet the journalist who had the inside info on the world's biggest news story, and was actually reporting on it, kept that knowledge to himself. Why? Urban was not only passing up a career defining opportunity, it was unethical of him to continually report on the story without revealing to the viewers his extensive contacts with Skripal.

The British government had two immediate reactions to the Skripal incident. Within the first 48 hours, it blamed Russia, and it slapped a D(SMA) notice banning all media mention of Skripal's MI6 handler, Pablo Miller. By yet another one of those extraordinary coincidences, Miller and Urban know each other well, having both been officers together in the Royal Tank Regiment, of the same rank and joining the Regiment the same year."

Conclusion

I do not know what happened in Salisbury. Plainly spy games were being played between Russia and the UK, quite likely linked to the Skripals and/or the NATO chemical weapons exercise then taking place on Salisbury Plain yet another one of those astonishing coincidences."

Weird how literally every one of thes poisioning incidents keep happening less than 10 miles from the uk's largest and most notorious deadly chemical weapons factory. The fascist uk regime should really stop murdering its own people with chemical weapons https://t.co/zvIXrJ57eK

-- Handsome Man of Steel (@HandsomeSteel) August 16, 2019

(cross-posted from Café Babylon

MrWebster on Mon, 08/19/2019 - 2:44pm

Novichok is all these things

At first Novichok described as thee most deadilest chemical weapon in the world. It immediate kills anybody exposed to it and any unprotected first responders.

It failed to immediately kill to anybody exposed to it.
Seems more like a bad flu instead.

Novichok degrades almost immediately.
Norvichock can stay around for months in a perfume bottle.

Only Russians can and did make it.
For a few bucks, university chem majors made a batch.

wendy davis on Mon, 08/19/2019 - 4:52pm
arrrrr, matey!

@MrWebster

the nerve agent is a chimera in time, too! you can even pull it out of a hat, like a wabbit!

thanks for the great chuckle-worthy additions, Mr.Webster. ; )

p.s. it did kill dawn sturgess, as far as we've been told, but iirc, there were extenuating circumstances given her addiction history. i love it that officer bailey ran a marathon recently, too.

and the saga continues....will it ever end?

At first Novichok described as thee most deadilest chemical weapon in the world. It immediate kills anybody exposed to it and any unprotected first responders.

It failed to immediately kill to anybody exposed to it.
Seems more like a bad flu instead.

Novichok degrades almost immediately.
Norvichock can stay around for months in a perfume bottle.

Only Russians can and did make it.
For a few bucks, university chem majors made a batch.

Alligator Ed on Mon, 08/19/2019 - 2:54pm
The tweet says it all

Just so happens, etc.

Another well-researched article. Thanks.

Now where can I find l'air du Novichoque ? This could ultimately shorten my Christmans shopping list next year.

wendy davis on Mon, 08/19/2019 - 5:20pm
who on earth is on your

@Alligator Ed

xmas list, santa gator? looks like ya gotta either keep your eyes peeled for knock-offs, or head to the soviet union... light bulb! maybe they left a few bottles hidden in the roof of that bog in the salisbury park!

wendy davis on Mon, 08/19/2019 - 5:19pm
and all those bad pennies...

@travelerxxx

are addin' up to a fistful of dollars and pound notes by now, aren't they? i'd call it humiliating, myownself.

i did dig out more from craig murray on pablo miller, orbus, et.al., cuz i'd needed a refresher: Where They Tell You Not to Look , april 30, 2019 lots of tweets, plus this great aaron maté interview w/ luke harding.

by the by, i finally heard from Rosette Sewali, Producer & Membership Relations Manager after i'd asked TRNN why is might be that neither sharmini piries nor paul jay have been there since june 13; she wrote back:

'Thanks for your email. Paul and Sharmini have been on leave since early June. Updates will be available when we have more information .'

??????

'At the very beginning of the of the Skripal incident, the security services blocked by D(SMA) notice any media mention of Pablo Miller and told the media not to look at Orbis and the Steele dossier on Trump, acting immediately to get out their message via trusties in the BBC and Guardian. Gordon Corera, "BBC Security Correspondent", did not name the source who told him to say this, but helpfully illustrated his tweet with a nice picture of MI6 Headquarters.

'MI6's most important media conduit (after Frank Gardner) is Luke Harding of the Guardian.'
..................
'Given that the Steele dossier is demonstrably in large degree nonsense, it seems to me more probable the idea was to silence Skripal to close the danger that he would reveal his part in the concoction of this fraud. Remember he had sold out Russian agents to the British for cash and was a man of elastic loyalties. It is also worth noting that Luke Harding has a bestselling book currently on sale, in large part predicated on the truth of the Steele Dossier.

Steele, MI6 and the elements of the CIA which are out to get Trump, all would have a powerful motive to have the Skripal loose end tied.
Rule number one of real investigative journalism: look where they tell you not to look .'

[Aug 20, 2019] How the British Government subjected thousands of people to chemical and biological warfare trials during Cold War

Notable quotes:
"... The research reveals, for the first time, that around 4600 kilos of the chemical, zinc cadmium sulphide (now thought to be potentially carcinogenic, on account of its cadmium content) were dispersed from ships, aircraft and moving lorries between 1953 and 1964. ..."
"... Professor Schmidt's investigation – published on 9 July as a book, Secret Science – has revealed that commuters on the London underground were also used as guinea pigs on a substantially larger scale than previously thought. ..."
"... The new research reveals, for the first time, that in another British imperial possession, Nigeria, a location was found for chemical warfare field trials. In an area called Obanaghoro in southern Nigeria, four British Cold War scientific missions spent a total of around 15 months dispersing, and assessing the effects of, large quantities of experimental nerve gas weapons. The advantage of the location was that it permitted field trials to be carried out in a tropical environment – and, of course, that it was not in Britain or Australia. ..."
"... Ulf Schmidt's book, Secret Science, is published today on 9 July, by Oxford University Press. ..."
Aug 11, 2019 | independent.co.uk

Substantial quantities were also dispersed across parts of the English Channel and the North Sea. It's not known the extent to which coastal towns in England and France were affected.

The research reveals, for the first time, that around 4600 kilos of the chemical, zinc cadmium sulphide (now thought to be potentially carcinogenic, on account of its cadmium content) were dispersed from ships, aircraft and moving lorries between 1953 and 1964.

Read more

Professor Schmidt's investigation – published on 9 July as a book, Secret Science – has revealed that commuters on the London underground were also used as guinea pigs on a substantially larger scale than previously thought.

The new research has discovered that a hitherto unknown biological warfare field trial was carried out in the capital's tube system in May 1964.

The secret operation – carried out by scientists from the government's chemical and biological warfare research centre at Porton Down, Wiltshire - involved the release of large quantities of bacteria called Bacillus globigii. The scientists were keen to discover whether 'long distance travel of aerosols' in the tube network 'was due to transportation within trains' or through the tube's air ventilation systems.

At the time, the government thought that Bacillus globigii bacteria were harmless – but they are today regarded as a cause of food poisoning, eye infections, and even septicaemia. It is not known whether the authorities attempted to properly test the bacterium before releasing it into the tube system. An earlier series of tube field trials, in July 1963, has been known to historians for many years.

However, the new research has now revealed that some of the British scientists involved had grave misgivings about the field trials that had been carried out. Indeed some had long felt that it was not politically advisable to conduct large-scale trials in Britain with live bacterial agents.

One particular test – involving live plague bacteria – was carried out off the west coast of Scotland in 1952. It's long been known that a fishing vessel inadvertently passed through the cloud of bacteria and that the authorities were very worried that the fishermen might contract the disease.

The plague bacteria field trials, though at sea, took place only a few miles from the Isle of Lewis which had a population of several thousand.

The government scientists, carrying out the trials, banked on the fact that the prevailing wind normally blew away from the coast. If, however, the wind had changed direction, thousands of Hebrideans would have been at risk from plague infection, says Professor Schmidt.

Equipment for the isolation of patients in a germ free atmosphere, which was developed at Porton Down in collaboration with the Institute of Child Health (Getty)

Following the fishing vessel incident, the scientists were eager to carry out any further potentially very hazardous field trials outside the UK. Prime Minister Churchill therefore approved a plan to carry out tests in a British overseas territory, the Bahamas.

New research shows that the government scientists took the view that the Bahamas was the best place "on the surface of the globe" to carry out tests "without restrictions".

In 1954, the British government sent Cold War biological warfare scientists to an area of sea near an uninhabited island in the Bahamas to release clouds of dangerous Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis viruses. These organisms were capable of causing, in humans, high fever, long term fatigue, headaches and occasionally death.

The new research reveals, for the first time, that in another British imperial possession, Nigeria, a location was found for chemical warfare field trials. In an area called Obanaghoro in southern Nigeria, four British Cold War scientific missions spent a total of around 15 months dispersing, and assessing the effects of, large quantities of experimental nerve gas weapons. The advantage of the location was that it permitted field trials to be carried out in a tropical environment – and, of course, that it was not in Britain or Australia.

The extent that local people (including locally employed field trial personnel) were affected by the nerve agents is not known.

Historians have so far been unable to find out who did the particularly hazardous work of 'hand-charging' the nerve agent artillery shells, mortar bombs and aircraft cluster bombs. Likewise they have not been able to discover the extent to which local Nigerian soils were contaminated or whether nearby villages and schools were affected by any of the toxic clouds that would have been blown across the countryside.

"The government records I've been looking at are conspicuously silent on all this," said Ulf Schmidt.

"Officials had clearly good reasons as to why the kind of experiments undertaken in Nigeria were strictly prohibited on the British mainland, which is why the files and photographic records surrounding Britain's post-war nerve agent testing in Africa were regarded as particularly sensitive," he said.

Professor Schmidt's research has also revealed the vast scale of Cold War chemical warfare tests carried out on 'volunteer' British service personnel here in the UK – involving numbers of people much greater than previously thought.

His investigation now suggests that up to 30,000 secret chemical warfare substance experiments were carried out, mainly at Porton Down, on more than 14,000 British soldiers between 1945 and 1989. He believes that, in most cases, the servicemen were not given sufficient information to allow them to give properly informed consent.

Ulf Schmidt's book, Secret Science, is published today on 9 July, by Oxford University Press.

Spreading diseases: 'Harmless' proxies

Aircraft, lorries and ships spread 4,600kg of cadmium sulphide in one decade

Zinc Cadmium Sulfide ultra-fine particles

. This inorganic compound was used by Cold War scientists in the UK and the US as a supposedly harmless proxy to simulate the behaviour, in the lower atmosphere and on the ground, of biological warfare substances. However it is still not known whether particles of ZCS that may have become embedded in people's lungs for decades could ultimately cause disease.

Bacillus globigii . This bacterium was used as a supposedly harmless proxy to simulate the behaviour, in terms of dispersal and penetration, of biological warfare aerosols. Although not considered harmful when it was used in Cold War field trials, it is now known to be capable of causing fevers, food poisoning (occasionally resulting in death), peritonitis and septicaemia .

Pasteurella pestis (now known as Yersina pestis) . Clouds of this highly infections bacterium were dispersed only over areas of sea – but nevertheless very near to Lewis, a Scottish Island with thousands of inhabitants. In order not to infect the islands, it appears that the scientists relied entirely on the wind not changing direction and speed. This bacterium is the one that has caused plague epidemics worldwide in the past (including those of the medieval world's Black Death).

Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis. Clouds of this virus were dispersed over an area of sea close to an uninhabited island in the Bahamas. The virus debilitates or kills horses and donkeys and can also cause severe fever and even death in humans. Mosquitos spread the virus further by biting equines.

G-series nerve agents. Clouds of this chemical warfare weapon were dispersed during field trials in a small part of southern Nigeria, some miles north of the town of Warri. G-series nerve agents were first developed by the Nazis before and during World War Two. The group includes substances like sarin and attacks the human nervous system, causing loss of bodily function and normally death. Survivors are likely to suffer long-term neurological damage and psychiatric disorders.

[Aug 19, 2019] Now where can I find l'air du Novichoque ? This could ultimately shorten my Christmas shopping list the next year

These idiots just keep digging themselves deeper and deeper into that hole they're in. It's almost embarrassing, even if I didn't wish them the worst.
Aug 19, 2019 | caucus99percent.com

[Aug 17, 2019] Where are they now? Who knows? Who asks?

Aug 17, 2019 | consortiumnews.com

Sophie Siebert , August 14, 2019 at 13:30

I'm experiencing a virulent case of deja vu here, that usually leads to hopelessness. I, like many readers, eagerly devoured the news of the Scripals – every contradiction, reframing, new bit of evidence. It's fair to say I was obsessed. Where are they now? Who knows? Who asks? I expect the same here. Another step on our downward path, to be preempted by yet another.

The best one can say is that with every one of these "incidents" we all become a little less sure of our old assumptions, more skeptical. Leading where?

[Aug 03, 2019] US Imposes New Sanctions on Russia Over March 2018 Skripal Poisoning

Tramp is trying to lease neocons again and again
Aug 03, 2019 | news.antiwar.com

New sanctions are to punish Russia for not making promises after last sanctions

Jason Ditz Posted on August 2, 2019 August 2, 2019 Categories News Tags Russia , Trump

The White House has announced that President Trump has imposed a new round of sanctions against Russia on Friday . The sanctions are nominally about the March 2018 Skripal poisoning in Britain, which the US has already issued sanctions over.

According to spokesman Hogan Gidley, the new sanctions are being imposed because of the last round of sanctions. In the previous sanctions the US demanded Russia offer them assurances that they'd stop poisoning people.

Russia never made any such assurances, since they denied poisoning Skripal in the first place. But not admitting guilt and offering the US promises, the US felt the need to impose another round of sanctions, which are probably going to set the stage for more future sanctions for the same reason.

Officials claim Russia is "required" to offer the US assurances about poisonings under US law, and the White House insists these new sanctions prove that President Trump is harder on Russia than anyone else has ever been at any time.

[Jul 24, 2019] Have you all forgotten how BOJO leaned himself out of the window, outdoing himself and his degenerate former boss by accusing Russia of poisoning the Skripals and whoever else with 'Novi-shock'?

Jul 24, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

nottheonly1 , Jul 24 2019 17:59 utc | 178

After having read all of the comments, I like to ask a question.

Neither in the story, nor in the comment section, I found any remark about the Skripal affair.

Have you all forgotten how BOJO leaned himself out of the window, outdoing himself and his degenerate former boss by accusing Russia of poisoning the Skripals and whoever else with 'Novi-shock'?

And this pathetic liar and accuser of Russia with as much as ZERO evidence is now at the helm of HMS Titanic?

No wonder people can't figure out what's really going on in the world. Considering his rabid "The Russians did it" tripe as FM, he should have been barred from public office for the rest of his life.

Unless, of course, it's all nothing but low grade ham theater, with everybody playing their role - including the Russians. But I do remember the kind of actions this guy wanted to take against Russia, for 'highly likely' having been behind this fairy tale of a double agent and his daughter.

So, please humor me about how much you remember of the stellar performance of this utter joke calling for sanctions and worse against Russia.

Now what?

[Jul 22, 2019] Russians believe that the Skripal affair has been much more damaging to HMG than it has to Russia

Jul 22, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Noirette , Jul 22 2019 15:15 utc | 154

....Russians believe that the Skripal affair has been much more damaging to HMG than it has to Russia, and have no interest in removing the mystery surrounding it - the more people delve, the more it stinks. Montreal @ 135 on Skripal thread.

I have heard similar, along the lines 'storm in a tea cup makes the Brits ridiculous',.. Putin knows what went down (or at least what didn't and the rough scenario.)

Remember when VP said in public that he encouraged the two Russians identified as 'culprits' (tourists in Salisbury..) to come forward - they promtly did so, correctly figuring that this was a protection guarantee for them. They hated, were afraid, to do it, and set stupid conditions with the Head of RT, trying to limit personal image damage. She couldn't refuse because of VP's advice.

Putin could publicly wonder why Britain is keeping them incommunicado. What are the Brits hiding? Even a devoted Empire supporter would have to agree that it is most peculiar. Yet Putin claims to have no knowledge on the subject, which is almost certainly untrue. Rob 136 that thread.

The Russians have made, and make, regular requests to have access to the Skripals via the usual channels, int'l etc. (+ by Red Cross if need be.) They are turned down everytime, but the situation is complex, as GB has various 'excuses' to hand: -> for protection of Skripals -> Yulia has stated she does not want -> Sergei is a swapped spy and etc. etc. (briefly and not 'legal' terms.) Conventional moves from the Russian side.

Putin has strenuously stated that traitors are the vilest scum, in harmony imho with his general principles as presented to the public, so why should he do SFA to help, or stand by, Sergei, who sold his country's 'secrets' for paltry sums and privileges .. (and Yulia, who is most likely? involved somehow? - maybe not .. -) On the other hand, Sergei did his time, has been pardoned, can do as he likes, where is the problem, the rule of law is such .. (alaff at 137 that thread makes that point forcibly..)

> The Russians sneer at this crazed hyped-up scenario of Novichok poisoning, re. some minor incident, rightly so, imho. Which does NOT mean the Skripals weren't targeted with some 'substance', hospitalized, etc. nor that Dawn Sturgess didn't die, and Charlie survived but has lost his agency and sense, nor that Porton Down was involved somehow.

The Skripals are kept incommunicado because they can't be allowed to speak out about what happened. Clue: nothing to do with Novichok or anything of world importance.

These local minor stories, situations, which may even be fabricated or 'engineered', are cynically upgraded to world-wide-media horrors by pols and the media, to manipulate the plebs with movie-script scenarios they can understand and relate to and take sides on and also at the same time 'be divided' endlessly discussing BS about this that the other and what more etc. etc.

[Jul 21, 2019] Putin Confirms Sergei Skripal Wanted To Go Back To Russia

Notable quotes:
"... Putin now confirms that Skripal was indeed willing to come back to Russia. Oliver Stone thinks Skripal wanted to present something to the press. If Skripal had publicly said that he made up and wrote the Steele dossier, the anti-Trump/anti-Russia campaign by the Clinton 'resistance' would have been over. The whole Mueller investigation nonsense would never have happened. ..."
"... The reality probably is thus: The Brits cold-bloodedly poisoned him and his daughter to tar the Russians. Then a straight British fabrication story that holds no water anywhere along the way. They did it, and he had no value to them, so why not? His daughter? She's Russian. Of no use to them. ..."
"... In the scheme of things, it was a trivial act of poisoning with a huge payoff, which they achieved. ..."
"... The Skripals were doped with BZ nerve agent. It is likely that Sergei has been maintained in a near vegetative state with psychotropic drugs since then as a means to keep him in storage. There was no novichok other than the fresh batch made at Porton Down and used to amateurishly spike the sample sent to the OPCW for analysis. ..."
"... The scenario b describes is the most probable of all that I've heard. Spook agencies such as the MI6 and CIA like to think of themselves as thrifty with their assets and thus accomplish multiple objectives with a single operation. They believe themselves to be clever that way. For this reason they would have been unlikely to have doped the Skripals for the sole purpose of implicating Russia. There are any number of other ways that they could have arranged an incident that makes Russia look bad. The operation would have had to serve other purposes as well, and silencing Sergei and preventing his embarrassing return to Russia would be suitable additional purposes. There were likely other objectives within the operation as well such as smoking out leakers. ..."
"... It would be well to remember that in early March last year, about the same time that the Skripals were found collapsed on the park bench in The Maltings shopping centre by Alison McCourt and her award-winning heroic teenage daughter, that the Syrian Arab Army liberated Douma / East Ghouta (or most of that area anyway) near Damascus and captured 300 terrorists. Among the captured fighters were found British and French "military advisors". The British government (and probably likely the French government: do people remember that Moscow also thumped Paris over its role in the Skripal poisoning saga?) needed a diversion from that sorry tale that would have exposed Britain and France's sordid roles in the failed US-led invasion of Syria and the overthrow of Syria's government. ..."
"... It is possible that Skripal, living alone in his house and his pets, and facing a lonely future in Britain after his daughter, the other surviving member of his family, started making wedding arrangements that would have meant fewer visits to Britain to see her father, had contemplated returning to Russia and had made known his wish to a few people he thought he could trust. ..."
"... It might very well be that - unfortunately for the Skripals - Skripal's handler and British government spook agencies were and are as much taken with conspiracy thinking and the conspiracy mind-set as Oliver Stone was (in his interview with Vladimir Putin) and those agencies feared that Skripal was going to spill the beans about his (possible) involvement in the Steele dossier and implicate them. ..."
"... Thanks b, a timely post. I sometimes suspect that the outing of Integrity Initiative and Institute for Statecraft was a Russian payback for the defaming antics perpetrated by the MI6 morons. I have no proof as it was meticulously anonymous. Its a comforting thought here in the gaslit studio of humanity. ..."
"... Putin states now openly it helped "to cause a scandal" supposedly for various geopolitical reasons. ..."
"... As I understood it, Sergei Skripal was more mercenary than spook, in the business of selling info because he could profit from it. In other words, more Aldrich Ames or Hanssen than Philby. ..."
"... He may have overplayed his hand - obviously, his plans leaked out - and UK intelligence (perhaps with the US involved) decided to stage the incident. Or perhaps - as is possible with someone who'll play both sides - Sergei was the leaker in an attempt to gain more currency with Moscow. ..."
"... The British police knew of the perfume bottle early on. The first theory of the poisoning presented to the public was that Yulia had brought the novichok from Russian in her luggage. There was even speculation that it was in a perfume bottle that Yulia had suddenly decided to open on the bench. (This did not sound plausible at the time as it would not explain how the novichok hit Sergei.) ..."
"... We know the police were all over looking for the missing perfume bottle. They could not find it, because Sergei had already dumped it in the charity bin. Maybe Sergei even told them where he put it, but Charlie had found it before MI6 could recover it. ..."
"... There is no Russian state component in it. Not even a Roque element. The claim is total BS. Short analysis shows, that management of this "case" is entirely in the realm of the UK. ..."
"... A lot of elements of this operation had to be prepared upfront and controlled while the operation is unfolding. It remains open, whether or not the skripals where in on the plot, probably not. But anyone asserting the "Russia did it/novichok" story does lack the sanity to be trusted with state matters. ..."
"... Both from interview transcripts and RT article it's clear that the part P. says he does not believe is that S. has been poisoned by the British services (in response to Stone's question floating such a possibility). ..."
"... if Skripal suspected that the bottle contained something dodgy, wouldn't you think the last place he'd dispose of it would be a charity bin, if he were an intelligent ex-spook? ..."
"... That remark by Putin was actually in response only to the question of whether UK spooks poisoned Skripal to stop him returning to Russia, not about whether Skripal wanted to return: ..."
"... However, since the "agent" found by Swiss was Agent BZ, it might be more interesting to hear what poster 101 has to say about synthesizing BZ... ..."
"... From what I have heard, the Russians believe that the Skripal affair has been much more damaging to HMG than it has to Russia, and have no interest in removing the mystery surrounding it - the more people delve, the more it stinks. ..."
"... As an inhabitant of the UK, I can say that a lot of us were very shocked when the Government was trying to stuff these obvious lies down our throats, and it is what got a few of us onto alternative media - sick to death as we already were of the Brexit poison in the MSM. So a belated thank you to b, and your colleagues, what would we do without you. ..."
"... Btw, just to remind - Boris Berezovsky also was going to come back from UK to Russia, he wrote a letter to Putin. But "suddenly" it happened so that Berezovsky committed a "suicide". We can only guess what he could tell if he returned to Russia. Someone really did not want this information to become known... ..."
"... The presence of HMG nurse on site, and the subsequent Monty Pythom-esque cover up, seems proof enough that the UK had foreknowledge and without question, worked to keep the Russophobia stoked high not only after the incident, but the later killed a UK citizen to continue the incident. Mr. P is being diplomatic. ..."
Jul 21, 2019 | www.moonofalabama.org

Putin Confirms: Sergei Skripal Wanted To Go Back To Russia

Filmmaker Oliver Stone recently interviewed the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin. The transcript was published yesterday evening. Most of the interview is about Ukraine. A separate piece will cover that country. There is also a passage about the U.S. election.

But the most interesting bits from Putin are about the Skripal affair.

The British and Russian double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Julia were impaired by some chemical substance in early March 2018 in Salisbury. Britain blamed the incident on Russia. CIA Director Gina Haspel, a former CIA station chief in London, used fake pictures of the incident to deceive Trump and to push him to kick out 60 Russian diplomats. (The NYT later ran cover for Haspel.)

We have speculated since the very beginning of the Skirpal case that the 'former' spy wanted to go back to Russia. Putin now confirms , to my knowledge for the first time, that this was the case (underline added):

Oliver Stone: What has happened to Skripal? Where is he?

Vladimir Putin: I have no idea. He is a spy, after all. He is always in hiding.

Oliver Stone: They say he was going to come back to Russia. He had some information.

Vladimir Putin: Yes, I have been told that he wants to make a written request to come back.

Oliver Stone: He knew still and he wanted to come back. He had information that he could give to the world press here in Russia.

Vladimir Putin: I doubt it. He has broken the ranks already. What kind of information can he possess?

The information Sergei Skripal possessed might have been related to the U.S. election and the Steele dossier which alleged that Russia had dirt on Trump. On March 8 2018, only a few days after the Sergei and Julia Skripal were allegedly poisoned, we discussed the connection in our first post on the Skripal affair :

[Christopher] Steele was an MI6 undercover agent in Moscow around the time when Skripal was recruited and handed Russian secrets over to the MI6. He [later] ran the MI6 Russia desk so anything about Skripal will have passed through him. It is very likely that they personally knew each other. Pablo Miller, who worked for Steele's private company [Orbis], lived in the same town as Skripal and they seems to have been friends since Miller had recruited him. Miller or someone else attempted to cover up the connection to Steele by editing his LinkedIn entry.

Here are some question:

If there is a connection between the dossier and Skripal, which seems very likely to me, then there are a number of people and organizations with potential motives to kill him. Lots of shady folks and officials on both sides of the Atlantic were involved in creating and running the anti-Trump/anti-Russia campaign. There are several investigations and some very dirty laundry might one day come to light. Removing Skripal while putting the blame on Russia looks like a convenient way to get rid of a potential witness.

The British government issued a D-Notice which prohibited the British press from further mentioning Pablo Miller.

We also speculated that Skripal wanted to go back to Russia:

The most curious point in the affair though is the visit of the daughter. She had just come from Moscow to visit her lonely father when both were poisoned in a rather sensational way. There must be some reason why she was involved in this.

or

The above questions are all highly speculative. But the connection between Steele and Skripal is way too deep to be irrelevant here. It certainly deserves more digging.

Putin now confirms that Skripal was indeed willing to come back to Russia. Oliver Stone thinks Skripal wanted to present something to the press. If Skripal had publicly said that he made up and wrote the Steele dossier, the anti-Trump/anti-Russia campaign by the Clinton 'resistance' would have been over. The whole Mueller investigation nonsense would never have happened.

Pablo Miller, the British spy, also appeared in the papers of the shady Integrity Initiative :

There is additional suspicion that the Integrity Initiative, whose primary function is to stoke Russophobia, was one of the brains behind the Skripal incident.

The Initiative was also involved in the Steele dossier and the russophobic anti-Trump campaign. Andrew Wood, a former British ambassador to Moscow, is employed by the Institute for Statecraft , the shadowy parent organization of the Integrity Initiative funded by the Ministry of Defense and Foreign Office. It was Andrew Wood who helped to disseminate the Steele dossier to U.S. Senator John McCain. McCain then gave the dossier to FBI Director James Comey. The FBI used the dossier first to get FISA warrants to spy on the Trump campaign, and, after Comey was fired, to launch a counter-intelligence investigation (section 3) against Trump himself.

Here is a theory how all this may come together. Back in 2015 the Institute of Statecraft and its russophobic director Colonel Donnelly discussed how to increase sanctions on Russia. In 2016 the Steele dossier was created in an attempt to connect Trump to Russia. Steele's colleague Pablo Miller and his spy Sergei Skripal were quite likely involved in creating the dossier. The dossier was disseminated with the help of Donnelly's Institute of Statecraft .

For some reason the Skripals had to be taken out. Sergei Skripal probably threatened to spill the beans about the dossier after it became public. The highly scripted 'Novichok' incident in Salisbury was staged to remove Skripal and to smear Russia with an alleged murder attempt. Colonel McCourt, the trusted army nurse, was asked to help on the scene. After the Skripal incident, and with no evidence shown, Russia was blamed and massive sanctions followed. The Integrity Initiative , the propaganda arm of the Institute of Statecraft , analyzes the media results of the Skripal affair and continues to stoke the anti-Russia campaign.

It might be possible that Steele's 'dirty dossier', the Skripal case and the Integrity Initiative operation are unrelated. But that chance for that now tends towards zero.

The weak part of that theory was always that we did not know for sure if Sergei Skripal really wanted to go back to Russia. We now know that this was the case. Oliver Stone seems to know that Skripal wanted to go public about something. That makes the theory fit even better.

Putin does not believe that the Skripals were poisoned to kill them:

Oliver Stone: Who poisoned him? They say English secret services did not want Sergei Skripal to come back to Russia?

Vladimir Putin: To be honest, I do not quite believe this. I do not believe this is the case.

Oliver Stone: Makes sense. You do not agree with me?

Vladimir Putin: If they had wanted to poison him, they would have done so.

Oliver Stone: Ok, that makes sense. I don't know. Who did then?

Vladimir Putin: After all, this is not a hard thing to do in today's world. In fact, a fraction of a milligram would have been enough to do the job. And if they had him in their hands, there was nothing complicated about it. No, this does not make sense. Maybe they just wanted to provoke a scandal.

Oliver Stone: I think it is more complicated. You know, you think I am much too much of a conspiracy guy.

Vladimir Putin: I do not believe this.

Oliver Stone: I have seen things. I do.

Vladimir Putin: You should not.

When and where will the Oliver Stone documentary about the Skripal affair have its premiere?

---
Previous Moon of Alabama posts on the Skripal case:


Zanon , Jul 20 2019 17:04 utc | 1

Doubt that, Skripal's enemies is in Russia, Putin have earlier stated Skripal was a traitor and should be treated as such. Why Skripal would go Russia after he deliberately moved out of Russia after an assault most likely carried out by someone in Russia, that makes no sense.
DG , Jul 20 2019 17:11 utc | 3
"Maybe they just wanted to provoke a scandal." ... he is right
bjd , Jul 20 2019 17:21 utc | 4
Ukraine.
CD Waller , Jul 20 2019 17:28 utc | 5
Zanon,

On what do base your conclusion that the Skripals were most likely poisoned by someone in Russia?

semiconscious , Jul 20 2019 17:37 utc | 6
@3

this sounds like the most straight-forward explanation to me, as well...

b , Jul 20 2019 17:46 utc | 7
@Zanon @1

Doubt that, Skripal's enemies is in Russia, Putin have earlier stated Skripal was a traitor and should be treated as such. Why Skripal would go Russia after he deliberately moved out of Russia after an assault most likely carried out by someone in Russia, that makes no sense.

Skripal was caught in Russia when he spied for the Brits. He went to jail for five or so years. Then the Brits wanted to exchange him for a Russian agent they (or the U.S.) had caught. Skripal was released from jail for having served most his time and exchanged. Russia has no more interest in persecuting him. Skripal did not 'deliberately move out of Russia'. There was no assault by Russia on him.

padre , Jul 20 2019 17:50 utc | 8
Zanon you statement it typical misinformation, you took only a part of Putin statement!Yes, he said that, but he also said, that he already served his time for that so he is of no interest to the authorities!
jayc , Jul 20 2019 18:10 utc | 10
It's been a full year now since Yulia's last (controlled) appearance to the public. The notion that the Skripals are in some kind of "witness protection program" has been suggested but never confirmed. There's no indication as to what they may have been witness to, let alone any statement of fact from them at all regarding the Salsbury events. This is highly unusual since the UK government made such a high-profile international incident of it all. Is Putin asked of the apparent forced disappearance of a Russian citizen (Yulia Skripal)?
elkern , Jul 20 2019 18:14 utc | 12
This adds some weight to the theory that the two Russian "tourists" were delivering something (paperwork? fake passports? ) that Skripal wanted, not trying to kill him. Or, perhaps, they picked up something FROM Skripal?

The sentence where Putin confirms Stone's idea that Skripal wanted to go back to Russia is oddly stated:

"Yes, I have been told that he wants to make a written request to come back."

1. Putin used present tense: Skripal "wants", rather than "wanted". Doesn't that imply some communication since the "incident"?
2. The bit about the "written request" part is way more specific than I would have expected. It sounds like Skripal wasn't just vaguely dreaming about going back to Mother Russia, but was taking steps to do so. Were the "tourists" delivering the proper bureaucratic Form that Skripal would need to fill out?

I may be reading way to much into this - it could just be idiosyncratic aspects of Putin speaking in English, or bad translation.

Red Ryder , Jul 20 2019 18:25 utc | 14
Who would not poison him and his daughter? The Russians. If he wanted to return, he would have to possess information that was worth taking him back and letting him live out his life in peace.
Would the crap Trump wanted to know be that infrmation?

He was being handled by Mi6 and knew he had no way to communicate with the Russians.
He needed his daughter to cut a deal.

The Brits could have easily pierced Skirpal's communication with his daughter (even if it was a whisper in her ear).
Would he risk his life and his daughter's life for such a long-shot 'deal'?

And the foundation question in all this is "Did Skirpal work on the Steele Dossier, and what did he contribute to that document?"

It's all a MacGuffin.

The reality probably is thus: The Brits cold-bloodedly poisoned him and his daughter to tar the Russians. Then a straight British fabrication story that holds no water anywhere along the way. They did it, and he had no value to them, so why not? His daughter? She's Russian. Of no use to them.

In the scheme of things, it was a trivial act of poisoning with a huge payoff, which they achieved.

Highly Likely it was a dirty trick by the Russophobic Brits. Nothing more. Sloppy Mi6 poisoning.

Mina , Jul 20 2019 18:29 utc | 15
He speaks in the present, not in the past. And says 'he is a spy' meaning the guy kept working for the Brits in the recent years. The Skripal affair was possibly used by May when she was cornered during the Brexit negotiation. No doubt it had other effects as well, such as forbidding any EU deal with the Russians over Syria.
DontBelieveEitherPr. , Jul 20 2019 18:46 utc | 19
Mina: Good catch.. IMHO all our speculations are futile anyway at this point. BOTH sides DO NOT want to know us the whole truth. Only time will tell, when those people directly involve actually talk and present hard evidence.
DontBelieveEitherPr. , Jul 20 2019 18:49 utc | 21
Addition: I would asume the Interview will be worth a watch anyway. The "Putin Interviews" makes for an interesting watch.Though stone seems sometimes more taken away by his own world view and narrative. But he has his hearth in the right place i assume, and provides some insights to western mass media watchers that they would otherwise never get.
DG , Jul 20 2019 18:53 utc | 23
There was no poisoning ... nobody died of Novichok ... Skripal and his daughter are alive and well ... the incident was staged ... it was a kabuki piece of anti - Russia malarkey poorly executed
Russ , Jul 20 2019 18:57 utc | 24
If Skripal had publicly said that he made up and wrote the Steele dossier, the anti-Trump/anti-Russia campaign by the Clinton 'resistance' would have been over. The whole Mueller investigation nonsense would never have happened.

I doubt that. The Russiagate-mongers have always been totally proof against any and all evidence of reality, from day one to today. In this case they would've just said he was lying, either to suck up to Putin and/or because Putin threatened him.

et Al , Jul 20 2019 19:01 utc | 25
Boris Berezovsky wanted to return to Russia too...
Ghost Ship , Jul 20 2019 19:05 utc | 26
Why has Skripal never given a public interview? Because he's dead? Nah, the idiots in the Conservative government would have milked that dry. My best guess is that the British government know that he'll say something very damaging to the Conservative government and that can't be allowed to happen. What that something could be can only be guessed at, but it could be that the Steele Report was authorised and approved by the Conservative government.
gzon , Jul 20 2019 19:19 utc | 29
This is one event I get nowhere with. In fact the only piece of information that gives me any info that I feel credible is how convinced a UK ambassador I am familiar with was about Russia being behind it, not by details given in person to me but just how they went about in reaction. There are ambassadors and ambassadors, and this one being a nicer person, quite meticulous, and not one to purposefully lie. That proves nothing though :( .

Did they move to the US in the end ?

Zanon , Jul 20 2019 19:45 utc | 33
Oliver stone is already attacked by liberals in the media:

"Oliver stone's latest piece of pro-putin-propaganda may be his most shameless move yet"
https://www.thedailybeast.com/revealing-ukraine-oliver-stones-latest-piece-of-pro-putin-propaganda-may-be-his-most-shameless-move-yet

and second article startts with:

"Filmmaker and conspiracy theorist Oliver Stone has made no secret of his admiration for Russian President Vladimir Putin, but now he has taken it to a whole new level by trying to make him his 22-year-old daughter's godfather. "

https://www.yahoo.com/news/oliver-stone-asks-vladimir-putin-031303288.html

somebody

Oliver stone is not a journalist, he asks questions he want to get exposure, is hidden in the western media.

Rob , Jul 20 2019 19:46 utc | 35
So, the question remains: Where in the world are the Skripals at this very moment? I do not believe that Putin does not know the answer, but for reasons of his own, he is keeping it to himself. Possibly, he wants the whole affair to disappear quietly down the memory hole. Of course, the story may return to the public eye someday. Sort of like a cold-case murder that finally gets solved.
ben , Jul 20 2019 19:52 utc | 36
@33 said;"Oliver stone is already attacked by liberals in the media:"

These are not "liberals", they are pretend liberals. MSM personnel are totally CORPORATE.

Their job is to protect the MIC's profits, and as such, hating RUSSIA funnels more $ in to
the system.

james , Jul 20 2019 19:56 utc | 38
@35 rob.... the skripals are being frozen out by the same means at the uk's D-notice... do the math.. it is very clear.. it has nothing to do with putin, in fact they need to keep skripals out of the picture forever, or until that is way past it's by use date - 30 years??
Michael Droy , Jul 20 2019 20:13 utc | 40
I don't think the Putin statement makes any difference. It confirms the Theory that the Russians did it equally as well as it confirms that the Brits or Americans did it.
MRD applies.
And it won't convince anyone either.

Whereas Chief Nursing Officer (Army): Colonel Alison McCourt OBE ARRC QHN L/QARANC, has pretty much convinced everyone something was dodgy about the affair. That and the ducks and most recently "the Antidote" that saved Charlie Rowley's life and just happened to be carried by the ambulance staff that arrived at his door. https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2019/jul/08/revealed-anti-nerve-agent-drug-was-used-for-first-time-in-uk-to-save-novichok-victim

And of course the "believe 10 incredible things before breakfast" claims in the straits of Hormuz this month. We are getting close to the point where May or Trump is going to flat out call their own intelligence services liars and creators of false flags.

William Gruff , Jul 20 2019 20:17 utc | 43
The Skripals were doped with BZ nerve agent. It is likely that Sergei has been maintained in a near vegetative state with psychotropic drugs since then as a means to keep him in storage. There was no novichok other than the fresh batch made at Porton Down and used to amateurishly spike the sample sent to the OPCW for analysis.

Putin refers to Sergei being a spy in the present tense since Putin knows that once someone is a spook they are always a spook. It is not a career one can retire from.

The scenario b describes is the most probable of all that I've heard. Spook agencies such as the MI6 and CIA like to think of themselves as thrifty with their assets and thus accomplish multiple objectives with a single operation. They believe themselves to be clever that way. For this reason they would have been unlikely to have doped the Skripals for the sole purpose of implicating Russia. There are any number of other ways that they could have arranged an incident that makes Russia look bad. The operation would have had to serve other purposes as well, and silencing Sergei and preventing his embarrassing return to Russia would be suitable additional purposes. There were likely other objectives within the operation as well such as smoking out leakers.

Do feel pity for the Atlantic Council trolls who are tasked with trying to subtly reinforce the nonsense novichok narrative. Theirs is not an easy job.

somebody , Jul 20 2019 20:18 utc | 44
add to 32

This here, by the way, was the rumour that Skripal wrote a letter to Putin asking to return .

Spread by the Guardian and the BBC.

The former Russian intelligence officer, who came to Britain in 2010 as part of a spy swap, regretted being a double agent and wanted to visit his family, his friend Vladimir Timoshkov told the BBC.

So HMG was embarrassed they could not protect their spy?

William Gruff , Jul 20 2019 20:29 utc | 45
As for Putin's responses to Stone being more ambiguous than you would like, please consider Putin's position. He is trying to be diplomatic and is unlikely to come out and make blunt accusations even if he is certain about them beyond any shadow of doubt. He needs to leave his "partners" in Britain and the US the wiggle room to climb down from their nonsense if they come to their senses. Furthermore, if he gives signals that Russia is willing to repatriate the Skripals then that could sign the Skripals' death warrant. Best for the Skripals if the British and Americans feel confident that the Skripals are securely pinned down.

You have to be careful what you say when dealing with psychopaths that you don't trigger them into violence with a misplaced word.

harry , Jul 20 2019 20:37 utc | 46
I thought this made a lot of sense https://southfront.org/michael-antony-the-alternative-skripal-narrative/
Jen , Jul 20 2019 21:13 utc | 50
It would be well to remember that in early March last year, about the same time that the Skripals were found collapsed on the park bench in The Maltings shopping centre by Alison McCourt and her award-winning heroic teenage daughter, that the Syrian Arab Army liberated Douma / East Ghouta (or most of that area anyway) near Damascus and captured 300 terrorists. Among the captured fighters were found British and French "military advisors". The British government (and probably likely the French government: do people remember that Moscow also thumped Paris over its role in the Skripal poisoning saga?) needed a diversion from that sorry tale that would have exposed Britain and France's sordid roles in the failed US-led invasion of Syria and the overthrow of Syria's government.

At the same time a military exercise in which troops apparently rehearsed a poisoning incident had just been completed in the Salisbury / Porton Down area. McCourt had taken part in that exercise.

It is possible that Skripal, living alone in his house and his pets, and facing a lonely future in Britain after his daughter, the other surviving member of his family, started making wedding arrangements that would have meant fewer visits to Britain to see her father, had contemplated returning to Russia and had made known his wish to a few people he thought he could trust. But whether he had information about his role (or no role) in cooking up the stories in the Steele dossier that Oliver Stone suggested he had, that he was planning to tell the Kremlin, is another thing. It might very well be that - unfortunately for the Skripals - Skripal's handler and British government spook agencies were and are as much taken with conspiracy thinking and the conspiracy mind-set as Oliver Stone was (in his interview with Vladimir Putin) and those agencies feared that Skripal was going to spill the beans about his (possible) involvement in the Steele dossier and implicate them.

These people are spies after all, and once a spook, always a spook. And spooks also look for a scheme that can hit two (and more) birds with the one stone; any consequences that arise, such as what to tell the public, can be dealt with later. Hence, the poisoning incident, that can be blamed on Russia and justify further sanctioning and arms build-up and expenditures (benefiting then PM Theresa May's husband financially), that deflects attention away from what just happened in Syria, and which removes someone from (possibly) telling the truth about supposed Russian involvement in the 2016 US Presidential elections, was a concoction too good to pass up.

uncle tungsten , Jul 20 2019 21:30 utc | 53
Thanks b, a timely post. I sometimes suspect that the outing of Integrity Initiative and Institute for Statecraft was a Russian payback for the defaming antics perpetrated by the MI6 morons. I have no proof as it was meticulously anonymous. Its a comforting thought here in the gaslit studio of humanity.

I had a good laugh at one poster who had it on good authority from a trustworthy ambassador that the Skripals are in USA. The ambassadors of the world are usually well versed in gaslighting. More on that subject at Corbet Report or Thomas Sheridan.

The big problem with Skripals etc was that they would reveal the complicity of the UK in developing the Steele dirty dossier to get Hillary the vulgar elected. They backed the wrong team and got caught playing dirty.

Mike-O , Jul 20 2019 21:49 utc | 55
Finding ambiguity or evasiveness in President Putin's answers to Skripal-related questions is not surprising - after all he knows that anything he says will automatically be discredited by the MSM echo chambers. By keeping his answers open-ended he challenges the western public to ask questions and find their own answers. Sadly, few will read or view with the open minds often found here at MoA.
Don Karlos , Jul 20 2019 22:07 utc | 58
Russian and English transcripts are not identical. In the Russian version, they both speak in the past sense, literally:

-It WAS said, that he would return to Russia, that he has some information
-Yes, I WAS told, he wants to write a paper, ask to return
-It WAS said that he intendED to return here and to provide some information to the press

From grammar, that was all said in the past, and was accurate as of that past moment (: the present tense is used after "that")

The source was not explained by either of them (...and indeed FWIW it reminds of Berezovsky...)

gzon , Jul 20 2019 22:08 utc | 59
From an establishment mouthpiece

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/sergei-and-yulia-skripal-offered-new-identities-with-cia-help-ztf896rnj

but it makes sense because they would be recognised everywhere in UK.

I don't get the insinuation from you Uncle T, I mean that is not what I said if it was me you meant. Same goes for WG insinuating there are trolls on board, it puts an air of uncertainty amongst commentators like they have to check what they say not to be called troll, and that is trolling. Why not just criticise a commentator directly and allow the discussion to continue from that instead if you are serious, of setting the whole board on edge ?

karlof1 , Jul 20 2019 22:22 utc | 60
When I linked to the Putin-Stone transcript yesterday on the open thread, I purposely omitted the Skripal discussion and posted the bit about American culture. I did so because of its convoluted nature, as many have noted. I read it 3-4 times and I still couldn't make sense of it via my usual methods of discourse analysis. In fact, the entire transcript is a series of convolutions. It would be better to see the filmed original and go from there. Of course, the Kremlin seemed okay with the transcript's form otherwise it wouldn't have been published.

As for the kidnapping of the Skripals by the UK government, IMO that's now the real scandal, but there seems no interest in it as BigLie Media has dumped the affair down its memory hole. And the truth of the matter is yet another reason why the UK's Deep State cannot allow Corbyn to gain power. Somehow, the UK citizenry must oust the Tories and Blairites, install Corbyn, and regain control over their destiny. Until that happens, the Skripals's fate and so much more will remain unanswered.

karlof1 , Jul 20 2019 22:54 utc | 61
As for the UK-sponsored Lie Machines, Kit Klarenberg continues his excellent work uncovering their schemes and continues to get his reporting published by Sputnik , as with the item linked within the above tweet:

"A reminder of when Integrity Initiative's bff @haynesdeborah, who'd been writing about #Skripal on an almost daily basis for over a year, believed an NYT story that totally contradicted the official Salisbury narrative and her own reporting on the subject."

Kit's just one of a small army of excellent online investigators worthy of following on Twitter and their publishing outlets.

John Dowser , Jul 20 2019 23:28 utc | 64
"For some reason the Skripals had to be taken out".

Is in this case perhaps not the simplest provided reason not also the best candidate? Skripal f#@&ed his old KGB buddies and he got payed back while of course, for dual use purposes, Putin states now openly it helped "to cause a scandal" supposedly for various geopolitical reasons. Russia already see itself at war, it's not "hoping".

Putin 2010" "Traitors will kick the bucket, believe me. Those other folks betrayed their friends, their brother in arms" and "Whatever they got in exchange for it, those 30 pieces of silver they were given, they will choke on them."

Putin 2019 (FT interview)" "Treason is the gravest crime possible and traitors must be punished. I am not saying that the Salisbury incident is the way to do it. Not at all. But traitors must be punished."

Now do we *really* need a complex theory when Putin calls it openly "the gravest crime possible"? Of course, some parties could have used this tension but sometimes we should not look for complexity when simpler solutions are there: motive, some evidence, perpetrator and murder weapon. Just not very *refined* but efficiency in terms of killing was perhaps not even the point being made. What is being demonstrated is willingness and means.

Evelyn , Jul 20 2019 23:44 utc | 65
Vladimir Putin : Is there an American culture?

GOOD QUESTION!

Lochearn , Jul 20 2019 23:45 utc | 67
Oliver Stone. Well, at least he tries. His most brilliant film, in my opinion, was Natural Born killers which was Kubrikesque as a sort of new take on A Clockwork Orange. But being a great film director does not make you a great researcher and analyst.

Putin most definitely has a sense of humour and I think that's what keeps him going.

... ... ...

Ort , Jul 21 2019 0:23 utc | 68
Just to throw it into the bubbling pot, there was that single report in May that Sergei Skripal, like ET, had finally phoned home. IIRC, earlier (c. March or April) there was a story with an audio clip about a telephone call between Yulia and her cousin in Russia.

I'm providing this link to a Telegraph article about the Sergei call just as a starting point for anyone who may be curious. I certainly can't vouch for the Telegraph's veracity, and of course have no rational way to assess the account's authenticity and significance.

"Sergei Skripal heard for the first time since poisoning in phone call, relatives say"

True or not, like every other "development" in this riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma of l'affaire Skripal, it raises far more questions than it answers.

FWIW, I think Putin's intellect and statesmanship is impressive. But he's undoubtedly a bit of a Cheshire Cat.

karlof1 , Jul 21 2019 0:28 utc | 69
Now here's a comment about US society that's more complex than Putin's:

"... what is actually the American essence: a society & economy built on pervasive and persistent structural racism."

Hard to fault that opinion. The overall context it was made in the reader can discover.

Rely , Jul 21 2019 0:54 utc | 71
As I understood it, Sergei Skripal was more mercenary than spook, in the business of selling info because he could profit from it. In other words, more Aldrich Ames or Hanssen than Philby.

He was selling info to MI6 in exchange for cash and a holiday home in Spain. He got caught, spent some time in jail and Russia swapped him because there was no further damage he could do.

It was probably that same mercenary spirit that made him want to go back and he would have known he'd have to make his wares really appealing to Moscow to let him back in. I'd think the Steele dossier and Russiagate seemed like a perfect opportunity for him to state - or perhaps -- overstate the importance of his information.

He may have overplayed his hand - obviously, his plans leaked out - and UK intelligence (perhaps with the US involved) decided to stage the incident. Or perhaps - as is possible with someone who'll play both sides - Sergei was the leaker in an attempt to gain more currency with Moscow.

I'd think that Putin knows exactly what went on and this would also explain why Russia hasn't been making a stink about one of their citizens - Yulia - being held prisoner/hostage in the UK for well over a year.

Petri Krohn , Jul 21 2019 2:07 utc | 72
Did Sergei Skripal dump the perfume bottle?

Michael Antony provides the best explanation for how the Nina Ricci box ended up in the charity box.

The Alternative Skripal Narrative - Michael Antony, The Saker Blog , February 17, 2019

Let's take the famous Nina Ricci perfume bottle, laced with novichok, which was found in a rubbish bin or charity bin by a homeless man and given weeks later to his woman friend, who tragically died after spraying it on her wrist. The police/MI6 narrative is that this perfume bottle was used to transport the novichok from Russia in the baggage of one of the alleged GRU men caught on CCTV in Salisbury. The novichok was then sprayed on the door handle of the Skripals' house. The assassins then callously threw away the bottle (which they knew contained enough novichok to kill more people) in a dustbin or charity bin, demonstrating their indifference to loss of life as well as their indifference to leaving clues all over the place. There are problems with this narrative.

The homeless man claimed he had found the perfume bottle still in its box sealed in cellophane, proof it was not reopened after it had been laced with novichok and professionally repackaged. The bottle could not therefore have been used (as claimed) to spray the novichok on the doorknob, or the cellophane seal would have been broken. Assassins far from home don't usually carry around cellophane-wrapping machines to repackage opened perfume bottles, especially when they are just going to chuck them in the bin. Nor would they take the risk, having fitted the separate spray nozzle onto the bottle and sprayed the doorknob, of disassembling it again to put it back in the box, knowing that a drop on their skin would kill them. And where would they perform this delicate operation? On the street? This poisoned perfume bottle was therefore never reopened, never used and it affected nobody until it ended up in the hands of the homeless man. So who or what was it intended for?

Ladies' perfume bottles are normally intended for women. How many women are there in this story? Only one. The only possible explanation for the existence of this unopened, unused bottle of perfume laced with novichok is that it was a poisoned gift meant for Yulia Skripal. Why didn't she open it? Because she had a spy father who took one look at it and said: "Don't touch it!"

So here is the alternative narrative. MI6 had the bright idea of putting novichok in a Nina Ricci perfume bottle and sending it as a birthday present to Yulia Skripal at her father's house. Her birthday was on 17th March, but the present was probably delivered on the 3rd, the day she arrived, so as to nip their escape plan in the bud. It was meant to seem like a present from her family or boyfriend. No doubt the parcel had Russian stamps on it, designed to frame the Russian state when the Skripals were found dead in their house with an open perfume bottle in Yulia's hands. Unfortunately for MI6, Sergei took one look at this Nina Ricci perfume bottle and his spy instincts smelled danger. He refused to open it, but instead went for a long walk with it and put it in a rubbish bin or charity bin half-way across town. There it was found by the homeless man and given to his woman friend, a victim of MI6's murderous callousness. Even after MI6 knew it had gone missing, they did not warn the public to beware of picking up a Nina Ricci perfume bottle because they didn't want to give themselves away as the assassins.

The British police knew of the perfume bottle early on. The first theory of the poisoning presented to the public was that Yulia had brought the novichok from Russian in her luggage. There was even speculation that it was in a perfume bottle that Yulia had suddenly decided to open on the bench. (This did not sound plausible at the time as it would not explain how the novichok hit Sergei.)

Suitcase spy poisoning plot: nerve agent 'was planted in luggage of Sergei Skripal's daughter' - The Telegraph , March 15, 2018

The nerve agent that poisoned the Russian spy Sergei Skripal was planted in his daughter's suitcase before she left Moscow, intelligence agencies now believe.

Senior sources have told the Telegraph they are convinced the Novichok nerve agent was hidden in the luggage of Yulia Skripal, the double agent's 33-year-old daughter.

They are working on the theory that the toxin was impregnated in an item of clothing or cosmetics or else in a gift that was opened in his house in Salisbury, meaning Miss Skripal was deliberately targeted to get at her father.

We know the police were all over looking for the missing perfume bottle. They could not find it, because Sergei had already dumped it in the charity bin. Maybe Sergei even told them where he put it, but Charlie had found it before MI6 could recover it.

Yeah, Right , Jul 21 2019 3:03 utc | 76
@1 Zanon posits a big ol' pile of tripe.

Zanon: "Doubt that, Skripal's enemies is in Russia, Putin have earlier stated Skripal was a traitor and should be treated as such."

He *was* a traitor, and he *was* treated as such: arrest, trial, conviction, imprisonment.

But business is business. Once the Russians had let him rot away in prison for years then there was still some residual value to be squeezed from him i.e. a spy-swap.

The rules of that game are very well-defined: you agree on the people, you do the swap-over, and then you walk away.

The dude you hand over goes into anonymous retirement, and both sides are content that they have done the right thing by their own.

Zanon: "Why Skripal would go Russia after he deliberately moved out of Russia after an assault most likely carried out by someone in Russia"

Oh, pllllllllllease. That sentence makes no chronological sense.

This is the sequence of events that makes the most sense:
1) Skripal is recruited by Pablo Miller
2) Skripal spies on behalf of the British
3) Skripal is caught and imprisoned by the Russians
4) Skripal is swapped for some Russian spies
5) Skripal "retires" to Salisbury
6) Skripal and Miller concoct the entire "dossier" in a pub, laughing uproariously
7) Skripal sees The Shit Hit The Fan in the USA over that "dossier"
8) Skripal thinks "Oh, crap, this could end badly" and puts out some feelers
9) Skripal's daughter brings a message: Two men are coming in a few days to talk to you, you can trust them, the deal they will propose is that you will be welcome back to Russia if you agree dump on the "dossier" in a press conference.

The two dudes turn up, but no meeting took place because someone else "novichoked" Skripal before he could get to that meeting.

Zanon: ", that makes no sense."

Pig's arse it doesn't. It. Makes. Perfect. Sense.

Skripal was swapped because as far as the Russians were concerned that was all the value he had left to him.

Once he got involved in the "dossier" then his value to the Russians skyrocket i.e. he could blow the lid off "Russiagate", but only if the Russians can get him back to Moscow.

They tried, and they failed. Someone else got to him first.

Yeah, Right , Jul 21 2019 3:17 utc | 77
@49 Zanon "I am not here to post syncopath comments as you do, "

Zanon, baby, you are here for one purpose only: to suggest - time after tedious time - that Vladimir Putin is to blame for everything that happens in this world.

A poisoning in Salisbury? Putin ordered the hit. Israel bombs Syria? That was Putin's idea. Iran is in Syria? Putin has already agreed to get rid of them. Blaming the Russians is your one and only trick.

Yeah, Right , Jul 21 2019 3:23 utc | 78
@65 John Dowser, your argument makes no sense.

Skripal was arrested and spent 5 years in a Russian prison. If "his old KGB buddies" had wanted him dead then that's when he would have been killed.

Why on Earth would they swap him, watch him go into "retirement" in Salisbury, and only then slap their foreheads and shout "Oh, shit, we gosh-darned forgot to kill him. Better send some guys over there and bump him off".

dltravers , Jul 21 2019 4:30 utc | 79
@ William Gruff

Yesterday you posted an interesting heads up about state dept and Atlantic council trolls working here. The context being crowing about the Panamanian deflagging of the Iranian vessel.

They fear this blog that much to commit resources in order to change minds? I an disappointed that Kissinger has not shown up yet. It makes me feel lowly and unimportant.

Even if Putin is perceived to be our enemy having a conversation would make some sense. The West fears that they could not stand in a room with him openly and beat him in a debate. His intellect would outclass them on every level. Minds would be changed and they fear that hence the fear of even having a conversation about him.

This garbage works on many but I have noticed that people do eventually begin to think differently if you softly point things out when the conversation turns that direction. They fear open conversations like this unless they can tightly control and edit.

curious man , Jul 21 2019 6:38 utc | 80
Posted by: Evelyn | Jul 20 2019 23:44 utc | 66

Vladimir Putin: Is there an American culture?

GOOD QUESTION!

ABC News :

"The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is warning that Russian agents could seek to further divide Americans by exploiting U.S. passions over whether pineapple belongs on pizza.

It's a cheesy, playful warning -- but it's trying to deliver a serious message. Posted online Wednesday by the department's Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, the tongue-in-cheek warning aims to help Americans identify and protect against propaganda campaigns from Russia and other foreign adversaries.

After all, the DHS warning says, Russian agents are capable of simultaneously insisting online that "Being anti-pineapple is un-American!" while also pushing out posts saying "Millennials are ruining pizza!""

curious man , Jul 21 2019 7:03 utc | 81
Posted by: Evelyn | Jul 20 2019 23:44 utc | 66

Vladimir Putin: Is there an American culture?

GOOD QUESTION!

Business Insider :

" A recent survey of 3,000 kids found that being a YouTube star was a more sought-after profession than being an astronaut among kids in the US and the United Kingdom.

Children ages 8 to 12 in the US, the UK, and China were recently polled in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission, which resulted in the first person to walk on the moon.

Kids in the US and the UK were three times as likely to want to be YouTubers or vloggers as astronauts, while kids in China were more likely to want to be astronauts."

Results of the Harris Poll survey https://tinyurl.com/yybydxhe

Norwegian , Jul 21 2019 7:14 utc | 82
Here's a simple hypothesis: Sergey Skripal was involved with the fabrication of the Steele dossier (we know this). Therefore, he was a risk to the UK government and security services, as well as the US "democrats". Quite possibly Skripal signalled that he wanted to return to Russia, but if he didn't he was still a risk because of what he knew. So TPTB made up the story that the "russians had poisoned the Skripals with Novichok". As always in these cases, it serves more than one purpose. In this case they got rid of the Skripal risk and they could blame Russia again.
Joost , Jul 21 2019 8:04 utc | 84
First Recorded Successful Novichok Synthesis was in 2016 – By Iran, in Cooperation with the OPCW
This has always smelled fishy to me. Why Iran? One of the most sanctioned countries in the world is allowed to make nerve agents, supported by OPCW? Why not some top class western chemical lab like Porton Down?

Could it be that PD already made the stuf but did not want to take credit, just in case it ever proved useful in blaming some Douma-style incident to Russia? But before that happened, everyone and his cat must know what Novichok is and that only Russia can make it. It had to be introduced to the public somehow. And then the wrong President got elected.

Brendan , Jul 21 2019 8:17 utc | 86
@somebody, # 44
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov quickly denied that claim last year: "No. That's not true," https://sputniknews.com/europe/201803241062856023-skripal-letter-putin-return/

I agree with what you said in #32. What Putin might have meant was that he was told the story, not that it was true.

moscowexile , Jul 21 2019 8:43 utc | 88
@ Piotr Berman

I understand Russian and I speak a language with a similar grammar, and I have no idea how to say "he said that he wants" in a way that implies something different than a wish made at the time of speaking ("he wants") or a wish that existed before he spoke ("he wanted"). Implication about wishing after the time of speaking would require some elaboration, you cannot make it by selecting tenses.

In Russian, as I have written above, one reports the tense as used by the person whose action one is reporting. Thus:

"I want to go back to Russia" [Я хочу вернуться в Россию] is reported in Russian literally as: Он сказал, что хочет вернуться в Россию [He said that he wants to go back to Russia], whereas in English, one should say: He said that he wanted to go back to Russia.

However, in Russian, one can add, for example, the term якобы in order to express one's doubts about the veracity of that action which one is reporting:

Он сказал, что хочет, якобы, вернуться в Россию [literally: He said that he, allegedly, wants to go back to Russia].

curious man , Jul 21 2019 9:23 utc | 90
Posted by: Joost | Jul 21 2019 8:04 utc | 95

First Recorded Successful Novichok Synthesis was in 2016 – By Iran,
in Cooperation with the OPCW

This has always smelled fishy to me. Why Iran?

Cornell chemistry professor states 'Novichok so simple to make, many labs could do it' -- The Skwawkbox, 05/04/2018

Dave Collum :

I asserted that any credible organic chemist could make novichok nerve agents. Here is my final exam in my 1st year graduate organic synthesis course. Only one kid of 15 lost any points. Uniquely Russian technology my ass....

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DdvJfIgUwAE6u17.jpg

David B. Collum is a Prof of Organic Chemistry @ Cornell.
somebody , Jul 21 2019 9:25 utc | 91
Posted by: Brendan | Jul 21 2019 8:17 utc | 97

RT clarifies

Stone asked the Russian leader if he believes in the theory that Sergei Skripal wanted to return to Russia and divulge some secrets but was stopped by the British government.

"Honestly, I don't really believe it. I don't believe it," Putin replied.

curious man , Jul 21 2019 9:25 utc | 92
Sorry ...

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DdvJfIgUwAE6u17.jpg

curious man , Jul 21 2019 9:46 utc | 95
Files from the Porton Down military laboratory were found in a trash can in Northern London. It's the laboratory where, according to the British authorities, nobody could walk out with the poison on the eve of the Skripal poisoning. Classified documents are a terrorist's dream, according to British intelligence agencies. So, they managed to walk out with them but failed to walk out with the poison?

Political analyst Alexander Nekrasov is now speaking from London. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eaee-URe04g

curious man , Jul 21 2019 9:56 utc | 96
Mystery surrounds elusive sanctions on Russia -- The Hill, 07/18/19

The Trump administration has not imposed a second round of sanctions on Russia over the poisoning of an ex-Russian spy in Britain more than eight months after telling Congress that Moscow had triggered them.

State Department officials have repeatedly insisted the United States intends to impose new sanctions, which are required under a law passed by Congress in 1991 on eliminating chemical and biological weapons.

But several months have passed without news, and members of Congress say they have heard little from the administration on the topic.

A former government official familiar with the matter told The Hill that the State and Treasury departments finalized a proposed sanctions package by March at the latest, but top officials have yet to sign off.

"Options have been ready to go for several months at this point and senior folks in the administration haven't made the decision or given the green light to roll them out," the former official said.

Bloomberg reported at the end of March that the White House had received the sanctions package and that State and Treasury were waiting for the White House to sign off before they issued the new punishment for the poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury.

The reason for the lack of action is shrouded in mystery. The White House did not offer a comment for this story.

<...>

curious man , Jul 21 2019 10:06 utc | 97
Putin: Why Would Anybody Be Interested in Skripal? He Served His Time For Being Traitor
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BM4J8zwf7wU
Insane scenario , Jul 21 2019 10:27 utc | 98
C'mon guys, the handling of the case shortly after the event rules out any Russian induced poisoning, circumstantial evidence does not fit a nerve agent. Its an utmost hilarious propaganda narrative. The Russian state orders an attack with an internationally banned weapon of mass destruction on the territory of a Nato member? For late revenge, hurt feelings? Doesn't anybody realize how stupid that sounds? The scenario brought forward, with the perfume bottle, could (thinking opsec) have easily involve thousands of innocent victims. Imagine the opening of the bottle in a mall. There is no Russian state component in it. Not even a Roque element. The claim is total BS. Short analysis shows, that management of this "case" is entirely in the realm of the UK.

The opcw sampling, the coincidental first responder military nurse, Pablo Miller...

A lot of elements of this operation had to be prepared upfront and controlled while the operation is unfolding. It remains open, whether or not the skripals where in on the plot, probably not. But anyone asserting the "Russia did it/novichok" story does lack the sanity to be trusted with state matters.

curious man , Jul 21 2019 10:36 utc | 99
UK: Police threaten to treat the publication of leaked information as criminal -- Reporters Without Borders, July 15, 2019 - Updated on July 16, 2019

Reporters Without Borders (RSF) condemns recent threats made by the London Metropolitan Police to treat the publication of leaked information as a "criminal matter" - marking the latest move to restrict press freedom in the UK in favour of national security.

Following a series of media reports containing details from leaked diplomatic cables preceding the resignation of Sir Kim Darroch from his post as UK Ambassador to the US, the London Metropolitan Police threatened to treat the publication of leaked documents as criminal.

[...] On 12 July, Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu stated that "The publication of leaked communications, knowing the damage they have caused or are likely to cause, may also be a criminal matter...I would advise all owners, editors and publishers of social and mainstream media not to publish leaked government documents that may already be in their possession, or which may be offered to them, and to turn them over to the police or give them back to their rightful owner, Her Majesty's Government."

The following day, 13 July, Basu appeared to partially back down, stating that the Met "respects the rights of the media and has no intention of seeking to prevent editors from publishing stories in the public interest in a liberal democracy. The media hold an important role in scrutinising the actions of the state." However, Basu maintained that publication "could also constitute a criminal offence, and one that carries no public interest defence".

<...>

uncle tungsten , Jul 21 2019 10:37 utc | 100
They are most likely in a black site lock up in Swest of England. Life sentence for sure. There are plenty of suitable estates that are probable black sites. Every nation has them I guess for their special prisoners. Julia and Sergei are prisoners of conscience, no habeas corpus in UK.
Don Karlos , Jul 21 2019 10:49 utc | 101
previous page @97 Brendan, @ 102

Both from interview transcripts and RT article it's clear that the part P. says he does not believe is that S. has been poisoned by the British services (in response to Stone's question floating such a possibility).

On 24 March 2018 BBC posted a piecemeal-videoed interview with S. classmate named Vladimir Timoshkov, who said that sometime in 2012 S. called him from London for about 30 minutes, argued that he did not commit treason since his allegiance had been to the USSR, and "wrote to Putin" (timing not provided) asking for full pardon to be able to return to Russia on family grounds. Writing to Putin was denied by Kremlin to BBC, and by Peskov in Russian media the next day.

Exact meaning is unclear. Timoshkov recollection is not very confident, he is not entirely sure about the year when this conversation took place, or the exact wording. It's not impossible that S. only planned to write such letter, not actually wrote it, and that such a possibility is tentatively confirmed by P. (However Stone version is coming back with some 'information', not coming on family grounds).

It is also possible that S. wrote such letter few years earlier, around the time of the spy swap in 2010. He had to write to Pres. Medvedev asking for pardon, at least formally, and it is not impossible that he was retelling some bits from that earlier letter. (Pardon was granted after it was requested).

jen , Jul 21 2019 11:01 utc | 102
Petri Krohn @ 74:

The problem with Michael Antony's explanation is that the charity bin has to remain untouched and unopened or emptied from about 5 March to about 5 July or the first week of July at least. That would be roughly four months from the time Sergei Skripal pops the bottle into the bin to the time Charlie Rowley finds the package and gives it to Dawn Sturgess who then opens the package, applies the perfume to her wrists and promptly keels over.

Plus if Skripal suspected that the bottle contained something dodgy, wouldn't you think the last place he'd dispose of it would be a charity bin, if he were an intelligent ex-spook?

Brendan , Jul 21 2019 11:01 utc | 103
@somebody # 102 ,
RT is mixing two different questions in one sentence: "Stone asked the Russian leader if he believes in the theory that Sergei Skripal wanted to return to Russia and divulge some secrets but was stopped by the British government. "Honestly, I don't really believe it. I don't believe it," Putin replied."

That remark by Putin was actually in response only to the question of whether UK spooks poisoned Skripal to stop him returning to Russia, not about whether Skripal wanted to return:

Oliver Stone: Who poisoned him? They say English secret services did not want Sergei Skripal to come back to Russia?

Vladimir Putin: To be honest, I do not quite believe this. I do not believe this is the case.

John Smith , Jul 21 2019 11:47 utc | 104
b: "Filmmaker Oliver Stone recently interviewed the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin. The transcript was published yesterday evening. Most of the interview is about Ukraine. A separate piece will cover that country. There is also a passage about the U.S. election."

The "passage" about Ukraine is no less interesting. For example,

Oliver Stone: I remember you were telling me about the Obama phone call, Obama and you had an agreement that there would be no firing on the last day. And he gave you a promise that he would

Vladimir Putin: You know, while Obama is no longer President, there are certain things we do not discuss in public. At any rate, I can say that the US did not follow through on the agreements that we reached during this phone call [ my emphasis ]. I will stop there without going into detail.

truth seeker , Jul 21 2019 11:52 utc | 106
b: "Filmmaker Oliver Stone recently interviewed the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin. The transcript was published yesterday evening. Most of the interview is about Ukraine. A separate piece will cover that country. There is also a passage about the U.S. election."

The "passage" about Ukraine is no less interesting. For example,

Oliver Stone: I remember you were telling me about the Obama phone call, Obama and you had an agreement that there would be no firing on the last day. And he gave you a promise that he would

Vladimir Putin: You know, while Obama is no longer President, there are certain things we do not discuss in public. At any rate, I can say that the US did not follow through on the agreements that we reached during this phone call [ my emphasis ]. I will stop there without going into detail.

Yeah, Right , Jul 21 2019 12:45 utc | 112
@109 Insane scenario "C'mon guys, the handling of the case shortly after the event rules out any Russian induced poisoning, circumstantial evidence does not fit a nerve agent."

I was always puzzled by how inept the British government's pronouncements were following the poisoning of the Skripals.

But once Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov were fingered then the penny dropped.

Here are my two hypotheses:
a) Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov were Russian intelligence officers sent to make contact with Sergei Skripal to parlay a deal.
b) British intelligence knew all about their upcoming visit (perhaps Yulia had been instructed to vouch for them, and was sloppy)

Easy-peasy: poison the Skripals at that park bench, then do some detective work to "discover" that those two weaselly-looking Russians were in Salisbury at the exact some time that Ol' Sergei was keeling over.

Open and shut case, m'lord.

Only the two Russians had left Salisbury (1:50pm) before the Skripals had even entered the Mill Pub (2:20pm). Therefore they could not possibly have attacked Sergei and Yulia at that park bench (4:15pm).

Shit, meet Fan.

Q: What do the Brits do once they find out that they had no fall-guy?
A: Scramble. Improvise. Wave their arms around like demented pigeons.

For starters, keep very quiet about Petrov and Boshirov until it is possible to come up with some way to squeeze them into the narrative.

And, for goodness sake, squash any suggestion that the Skripals had been attacked at that park bench. No, perish the thought, even if it is the obvious conclusion.

Errrr, how about the car! No, that's stupid. The poison was in Zizzi's? No, that doesn't actually help. The ducks... no, get a grip man, that's dumber than the car... ummm.. umm.. umm..

Flunky: What about the doorknob?
Flustered: What?
Flunky: We can claim they smeared the poison on the doorknob.
Flustered: Oh, what the heck. OK, we'll go with that.
Flunky: And Petrov and Boshirov?
Flustered: Yes, yes [waves hand] release their pictures.

These are facts:
a) Petrov and Boshirov were on a train back to London by 2pm
b) Sergei and Yulia were found on that park bench around 4pm
c) The Brits therefore had to come up with a timeline that has the Skripals poisoned well *before* 2pm but only collapsing *after* 4pm.

What we see now is the result of that need i.e. it is an insult to the intelligence, but the only way for the Brits to pin the attack on their pre-planned fall-guys.

truth seeker , Jul 21 2019 12:51 utc | 113
Posted by: Evelyn | Jul 20 2019 23:44 utc | 66

Vladimir Putin: Is there an American culture?

GOOD QUESTION!

Yes, of course, there is.

NHL, NBA, NFL, KFC, McDonald's, hamburgers, hotdogs, coke and other junk food...

panem et circenses!

Joke!

Walter , Jul 21 2019 12:55 utc | 114
@ in re organic chem prof and novowhatever... The Prof is obviously correct, dd simple. There are guys in jails, busted for dope, who could make novowhatever...

However, since the "agent" found by Swiss was Agent BZ, it might be more interesting to hear what poster 101 has to say about synthesizing BZ...

"I asserted that any credible organic chemist could make novichok nerve agents. Here is my final exam in my 1st year graduate organic synthesis course. Only one kid of 15 lost any points. Uniquely Russian technology my ass...."

So, Professor Collum, speak, please, to matter of BZ, as this seems far more interesting and congruent with observations.

Thanks.

William Gruff , Jul 21 2019 13:06 utc | 115
Nothing wrong with paid work being tiring. It lets the employee know they have earned their shekels, or benjamins as the case may be. It helps keep the "impostor syndrome" at bay.

I wonder if Sergei got impostor syndrome when he was writing up his part of the Steele Dossier or if he was just enjoying an opportunity to be creative?

Noirette , Jul 21 2019 14:59 utc | 125
The weak part of that theory was always that we did not know for sure if Sergei Skripal really wanted to go back to Russia.

b top post.

Iirc, Sergei's desire to do so was reported from various sources, Viktoria Skripal (niece) in first place, Yulia perhaps as well. It was just a part of the story for those who were gripped by it, incl. me. Getting the quotes together would take hours, in any case they might be contested, be merely some 'option', etc.

Makes sense: his wife and son had died, his (one guesses beloved) daughter was established in Russia, he never adapted except superficially, was never successful, in GB. (i can't speak to steele dossier etc.)

Sergei holding Yulia post birth: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-43353178

Guardian, by Luke Harding, published an article stating that Sergei did not at first believe that Russia 'poisoned him' - parts ring very true, and are counter to the MSM narrative.

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/oct/02/sergei-skripal-initially-did-not-believe-russia-tried-to-kill-him-book

Sergei is alive (I tend to believe that), just as Yulia said in her last phone call.

Sergei called Viktoria (niece) who is living with and taking care of his mother, May 2019.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2019/05/23/sergei-skripal-heard-first-time-since-poisoning-phone-call-relatives/

Putin knows pretty much what happened but won't say imho.

Here a report on upping spy vs spy stories to inflame international relations co. Putin.

https://tass.com/world/1065970

Formerly T-Bear , Jul 21 2019 15:07 utc | 126
Theresa May should be installed in the Tower of London until she habeas the Scripal's corpses or provides verifiable information as to their estate. Should said Theresa May expire in said Tower of London, she can do so in knowledge and consolation that so many much better than herself have done so already.

The Tower of London stands as the best monument to the liquidation of the British Monarchy and their Royal Family as well as the Aristocracy that supports that enterprise. May it soon be so dedicated. Maybe the lies will then stop.

Only an opinion (and prayer).

Russ , Jul 21 2019 15:11 utc | 127
Posted by: Bemildred | Jul 21 2019 14:45 utc | 123

"I tend to think they are deceased, or they would have been trotted out for more coerced interviews."

I disagree with those. As it is, it seems literally no one in Britain cares about this case. (I'm not there, but I'm assuming if there were a civil liberties group trying to make a public issue of their disappearance, loudly demanding of the government, "Where are the Skripals? Are you illegally imprisoning them?", that I would've read about it here at some point.) So why remind the people of their bizarrely disappeared existence?

As for killing them, though, if the government were smart in this case (I know they're stupid in general, yes), they'd still keep them alive just in case there somehow were public pressure to produce them. Look at the mistake Richard III made.

William Gruff , Jul 21 2019 15:15 utc | 128
Arioch @122 pointed out: "...maybe for Putin there is really nothing of importance that Skrypal could know and tell."

This is an significant distinction. Does it really matter to Putin or Russian geostrategic interests if Sergei Skripal wanted to announce that he was one of the authors of the Steele Dossier, and that he just did it for fun and profit? To the British and the Americans this would be a huge embarrassment, but aside from some sweet schadenfreude what would Russia gain from it?

From Stone's perspective this issue would be very important, but from Putin's, not so much. When assigning an issue importance, one must always consider to whom the issue is important as importance is rarely universal.

Bemildred , Jul 21 2019 15:55 utc | 132
russ @127: I said deceased, not killed by UK, that was some other posters.

The UK government has not showed a shred of intelligence for several decades now. They take orders from us, and we are not really their friends, we intend to rule, not ally. you can't get more naive than that. But I don't really care, like with Kashoggi, I want to know where there are now, before I starting putting emotional weight behind any stories I'm being told about how they got there.

(Not trying to get in your face, just like accurate representation of what I said.)

Don Karlos , Jul 21 2019 16:14 utc | 134
@ Arioch 124

Actually, he would have quite a number of ways to "write to P", if he really wanted.

E.g. he could (a) send an electronic message directly using electronic letter submission option on the official website, or (b) he could ask Yulia to do so for him, and she had a social media account (that's how his classmate established a contact with him), + almost surely a email address,+ able to visit (c) or similarly via Victoria (d) or that classmate (e) or come to any Rus. consulate anywhere and ask for it to be done --and one of his UK acquaintances was telling he visited the embassy 'often' (f) or do it in lots of other ways he could easily come up with, given his background in intelligence, + contacts and experience, even if his communications were monitored

Montreal , Jul 21 2019 16:15 utc | 135
From what I have heard, the Russians believe that the Skripal affair has been much more damaging to HMG than it has to Russia, and have no interest in removing the mystery surrounding it - the more people delve, the more it stinks.

As an inhabitant of the UK, I can say that a lot of us were very shocked when the Government was trying to stuff these obvious lies down our throats, and it is what got a few of us onto alternative media - sick to death as we already were of the Brexit poison in the MSM. So a belated thank you to b, and your colleagues, what would we do without you.

Rob , Jul 21 2019 16:30 utc | 136
@james (38) Not sure what your point is re Putin's silence on the Skripal's whereabouts. Putin could publicly wonder why Britain is keeping them incommunicado. What are the Brits hiding? Even a devoted Empire supporter would have to agree that it is most peculiar. Yet Putin claims to have no knowledge on the subject, which is almost certainly untrue. His reason for this is unclear, but Putin is nothing if not shrewd. In time, the story will come out one way or another.
alaff , Jul 21 2019 16:32 utc | 137
@ Zanon, #1:
Doubt that, Skripal's enemies is in Russia, Putin have earlier stated Skripal was a traitor and should be treated as such. Why Skripal would go Russia after he deliberately moved out of Russia after an assault most likely carried out by someone in Russia, that makes no sense.

It seems you just watch/read MSM too much. "would go Russia", "moved out of Russia", "by someone in Russia" etc. Russia, Russia, Russia...

The thing is that Russia has nothing to do with all this stuff (mean, "Skripal case").
Yes, Putin called Skripal a traitor. Why? Because Skripal is a traitor.
If you didn't know, Putin is used to calling a spade a spade, without prevarication or double meanings.

"Why Skripal would go Russia"

You reason in categories that you understand, although in reality people may have dozens of reasons to do what you do not understand.
Why Skripal would go Russia? Well, don't you think the answer may be that Skripal simply love Russia? Because Russia is his Motherland, his home, his country. Because he has his mother here, relatives, friends etc.
He can love Russia, his country, even in spite of the harm that has caused her by his betrayal.
He may experience shame, remorse, and other feelings. Don't you think about it?

And you don't understand the main thing. Because of Western MSM propaganda it may seems to people that something is "wrong" with living in Russia.
This is pure nonsense. Just to remind - Skripal was arrested, and he served his time in Russian jail, according to law.
Then he was officially pardoned and was released free. Since that moment he was free to do whatever he wanted.

The right to come back to Russia was/is his right.
There's no law in Russia that if you served prison term and was released, you can't come back from another country.
So, i repeat, Skripal can do whatever he wants.

The fact that Putin called him a traitor does not matter. Traitors can come back, bastards can come back, liars can come back etc.
If you have no problems with the law, the Russian state will have no complaints about you.
Since 2011, when Skripal was pardoned, he is clean under Russian law, so can do whatever he wants.

Btw, just to remind - Boris Berezovsky also was going to come back from UK to Russia, he wrote a letter to Putin. But "suddenly" it happened so that Berezovsky committed a "suicide". We can only guess what he could tell if he returned to Russia. Someone really did not want this information to become known...

Casey , Jul 21 2019 17:49 utc | 143
The presence of HMG nurse on site, and the subsequent Monty Pythom-esque cover up, seems proof enough that the UK had foreknowledge and without question, worked to keep the Russophobia stoked high not only after the incident, but the later killed a UK citizen to continue the incident. Mr. P is being diplomatic.
Don Karlos , Jul 21 2019 18:11 utc | 144
The guy who said that Skripal has been visiting the embassy "monthly" is Valery Morozov, who has a refugee status in the UK. He made the claim in interviews to Western and Russian opposition media, saying that he did not like that and stopped his contacts with S.

E.g. here https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/fellow-russian-exile-claims-poisoned-12146023 and https://tvrain.ru/news/znakomyj-459957/ here. Video seems gone, the text is still there.

Apparently not confirmed by the embassy

FWIW

PS. For the official website submission, one does not need to "authorize" it, one needs to provide the full name, email, and phone number on electronic form, that's all. It may be not the best way but the office is required to confirm receipt and to answer. Of course it may not be the kind of answer which he sought...

Zanon , Jul 21 2019 19:41 utc | 145
alaff

Very easy, Skripal have not moved to Russia, nor has his daughter. he is not friend of Russian state, after the swap he kept working with intelligence services in the whole of the west, giving them information on Russia. You don't go back to live freely in the nation you repeatedly committed high treason against, then, you are just foolish, begging to be killed.

karlof1 , Jul 21 2019 21:11 utc | 150
flankerbandit @149--

Ditto your thanks! Zanon's been outed as a troll for months, yet he keeps being fed and FUDs with its fellows.

[Jun 28, 2019] The OPCW, Douma The Skripals

Notable quotes:
"... It seems that everyone is lying about the Skripal affair. The UK govt. version is riddled with inconsistencies. But it does seem that 2 GRU officers were wandering around Salisbury. Why? And the Russians are lying about that. ..."
"... The likelihood is that the GRU were there to discuss with Skripal his wishes to return to Russia. There is an alternative likelihood that they were there to quiz him on his contribution to the Dodgy Dossier. Both scenarios could well lead to the British secret services deciding to take Skripal out, even down, and blame it on the Russians. ..."
"... I would suggest that Skripal and his daughter are now either living somewhere else in Natoland under different identities and some money to keep them quiet, or else their existence became too awkward and risky and sadly they have been liquidated. ..."
May 17, 2019 | off-guardian.org

In view of the latest revelations from the leaked report, which seem to prove that at least some elements of the Douma "chemical attack" were entirely staged, we want to take look back at the chaotic events of Spring 2018.

The following is an extract from an article by Catte originally published April 14th last year, which takes on a greater weight in light of certain evidence – not only that the Douma attack was faked, but that the OPCW is compromised.

You can read the whole article here .

Primarily UK initiative?

The neocon faction in the US is usually (and reasonably) regarded as the motivator behind much of the western aggression in the Middle East.

Since at least 2001 and the launch of the "War on Terror" the US has led the way in finding or creating facile excuses to fight oil wars and hegemonic wars and proxy wars in the region. But this time the dynamics look a little different.

This time it really looks as if the UK has been setting the pace of the "response".

The fact (as stated above) that Mattis was apparently telegraphing his own private doubts a)about the verifiability of the attacks, and b)about the dangers of a military response suggests he was a far from enthusiastic partaker in this adventure.

Trump's attitude is harder to gauge. His tweets veered wildly between unhinged threats and apparent efforts at conciliation. But he must have known he would lose (and seemingly has lost) a great part of his natural voter base (who elected him on a no-more-war mandate) by an act of open aggression that threatened confrontation with Russia on the flimsiest of pretexts.

Granted the US has been looking for excuses to intervene ever more overtly in Syria since 2013, and in that sense this Douma "initiative" is a continuation of their longterm policy. It's also true Russia was warning just such a false flag would be attempted in early March. But in the intervening month the situation on the ground has changed so radically that such an attempt no longer made any sense.

A false flag in early March, while pockets of the US proxy army were still holding ground in Ghouta would have enabled a possible offensive in their support which would prevent Ghouta falling entirely into government hands and thereby also maintain the pressure on Damascus. A false flag in early April is all but useless because the US proxy army in the region was completely vanquished and nothing would be gained by an offensive in that place at that time.

You can see why Mattis and others in the administration might be reluctant to take part in the false flag/punitive air strike narrative if they saw nothing currently to be gained to repay the risk. They may have preferred to wait for developments and plan for a more productive way of playing the R2P card in the future.

The US media has been similarly, and uncharacteristically divided and apparently unsure. Tucker Carlson railed against the stupidity of attacking Syria. Commentators on MSNBC were also expressing intense scepticism of the US intent and fear about possible escalation.

The UK govt and media on the other hand has been much more homogeneous in advocating for action. No doubts of the type expressed by Mattis have been heard from the lips of an UK government minister. Even May, a cowardly PM, has been (under how much pressure?) voicing sterling certitude in public that action HAD to be taken.

Couple this with the – as yet unverified – claims by Russia of direct UK involvement in arranging the Douma "attack", and the claims by Syria that the perps are in their custody, and a tentative storyline emerges. It's possible this time there were other considerations in the mix beside the usual need to "be seen to do something" and Trump's perpetual requirement to appease the liberal Russiagaters and lunatic warmongers at home. Maybe this time it was also about helping the UK out of a sticky problem.

The Skripal consideration

Probably the only thing we can all broadly agree on about the Skripal narrative is that it manifestly did not go according to plan. However it was intended to play out, it wasn't this way. Since some time in mid to late March it's been clear the entire thing has become little more than an exercise in damage-limitation, leak-plugging and general containment.

The official story is a hot mess of proven falsehoods, contradictions, implausible conspiracy theories, more falsehoods and inexplicable silences were cricket chirps tell us all we need to know.

The UK government has lied and evaded on every key aspect.

1) It lied again and again about the information Porton Down had given it

2) Its lawyers all but lied to Mr Justice Robinson about whether or not the Skripals had relatives in Russia in an unscrupulous attempt to maintain total control of them, or at least of the narrative.

3) It is not publishing the OPCW report on the chemical analyses, and the summary of that report reads like an exercise in allusion and weasel-wording. Even the name of the "toxic substance" found in the Skripals' blood is omitted, and the only thing tying it to the UK government's public claims of "novichok" is association by inference and proximity.

Indeed if current claims by Russian FM Lavrov turn out to be true, a "novichok" (whatever that precisely means in this case) may not have been the only substance found in those samples, and a compound called "BZ", a non-lethal agent developed in Europe and America, has been discovered and suppressed in the OPCW report (more about that later).

None of the alleged victims of this alleged attack has been seen in public even in passing since the event. There is no film or photographs of DS Bailey leaving the hospital, no film or photographs of his wife or family members doing the same. No interviews with Bailey, no interviews with his wife, family, distant relatives, work colleagues.

The Skripals themselves were announced to be alive and out of danger mere days after claims they were all but certain to die. Yulia, soon thereafter, apparently called her cousin Viktoria only to subsequently announce, indirectly through the helpful agency of the Metropolitan Police, that she didn't want to talk to her cousin – or anyone else – at all.

She is now allegedly discharged from hospital and has "specially trained officers helping to take care of" her in an undisclosed location. A form or words so creepily sinister it's hard to imagine how they were ever permitted the light of day.

Very little of this bizarre, self-defeating, embarrassing, hysterical story makes any sense other than as a random narrative, snaking wildly in response to events the narrative-makers can't completely control.

Why? What went wrong? Why has the UK government got itself into this mess? And how much did the Douma "gas attack" and subsequent drive for a concerted western "response" have to do with trying to fix that?

Is this what happened?

If a false flag chemical attack had taken place in Syria at the time Russia predicted, just a week or two after the Skripal poisoning, a lot of the attention that's been paid to the Skripals over the last month would likely have been diverted. Many of the questions being asked by Russia and in the alt media may never have been asked as the focus of the world turned to a possible superpower stand-off in the Middle East.

So, could it be the Skripal event was never intended to last so long in the public eye? Could it be that it was indeed a false flag, or a fake event, as many have alleged, planned as a sketchy prelude to, or warm up act for a bigger chemical attack in Syria, scheduled for a week or so later in mid-March – just around the time Russia was warning of such a possibility?

Could it be this planned event was unexpectedly canceled by the leading players in the drama (the US) when the Russians called them out and the rapid and unexpected fall of Ghouta meant any such intervention became pointless at least for the moment?

Did this cancelation leave the UK swinging in the wind, with a fantastical story that was never intended to withstand close scrutiny, and no second act for distraction?

So, did they push on with the now virtually useless "chemical attack", botch it (again), leaving a clear evidence trail leading back to them? Did they then further insist on an allied "response" to their botched false flag in order to provide yet more distraction and hopefully destroy some of that evidence?

This would explain why the UK may have been pushing for the false flag to happen (as claimed by Russia) even after it could no longer serve much useful purpose on the ground, and why the Douma "attack" seems to have been so sketchily done by a gang on the run. The UK needed the second part to happen in order to distract from the first.

It would explain why the US has been less than enthused by the idea of reprisals. Because while killing Syrians to further geo-strategic interests is not a problem, killing Syrians (and risking escalation with Russia) in order to rescue an embarrassed UK government is less appealing.

And it would explain why the "reprisals" when they came were so half-hearted.

If this is true, Theresa May and her cabinet are currently way out on a limb even by cynical UK standards. Not only have they lied about the Skripal event, but in order to cover up that lie they have promoted a false flag in Syria, and "responded" to it by a flagrant breach of international and domestic law. Worst of all, if the Russians aren't bluffing, they have some evidence to prove some of the most egregious parts of this.

This is very bad.

But even if some or all of our speculation proves false, and even if the Russian claims of UK collusion with terrorists in Syria prove unfounded, May is still guilty of multiple lies and has still waged war without parliamentary approval.

This is a major issue. She and her government should resign. But it's unlikely that will happen.

So what next? There is a sense this is a watershed for many of the parties involved and for the citizens of the countries drawn into this.

Will the usual suspects try to avoid paying for their crimes and misadventures by more rhetoric, more false flags, more "reprisals"? Or will this signal some other change in direction?

We'll all know soon enough.


andyoldlabour

D S Bailey was interviewed by the BBC after leaving the hospital, but that interview simply raised more questions. Why was his family allow