September 8, 2013
Ask anyone still thinking of supporting an attack on Syria to explain why the U.S. started supporting the Syrian opposition years before any uprising had occurred there.
And ask them to explain why 4-Star General Wesley Clark was told – right after 9/11 – that Pentagon officials planned to attack 7 countries in 5 years … including Iraq, Libya and Syria:
I had been through the Pentagon right after 9/11. About ten days after 9/11, I went through the Pentagon and I saw Secretary Rumsfeld and Deputy Secretary Wolfowitz. I went downstairs just to say hello to some of the people on the Joint Staff who used to work for me, and one of the generals called me in. He said, “Sir, you’ve got to come in and talk to me a second.” I said, “Well, you’re too busy.” He said, “No, no.” He says, “We’ve made the decision we’re going to war with Iraq.” This was on or about the 20th of September.
So I came back to see him a few weeks later, and by that time we were bombing in Afghanistan. I said, “Are we still going to war with Iraq?” And he said, “Oh, it’s worse than that.” He reached over on his desk. He picked up a piece of paper. And he said, “I just got this down from upstairs” — meaning the Secretary of Defense’s office — “today.” And he said, “This is a memo that describes how we’re going to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran.”
And ask them why this planning of regime change in Syria and 6 other countries started by 1991 at the latest:
It came back to me … a 1991 meeting I had with Paul Wolfowitz.
In 1991, he was the Undersecretary of Defense for Policy – the number 3 position at the Pentagon. And I had gone to see him when I was a 1-Star General commanding the National Training Center.
And I said, “Mr. Secretary, you must be pretty happy with the performance of the troops in Desert Storm.”
And he said: “Yeah, but not really, because the truth is we should have gotten rid of Saddam Hussein, and we didn’t … But one thing we did learn [from the Persian Gulf War] is that we can use our military in the region – in the Middle East – and the Soviets won’t stop us. And we’ve got about 5 or 10 years to clean up those old Soviet client regimes – Syria, Iran, Iraq – before the next great superpower comes on to challenge us.”
(Skip to 3:07 in the following video)
And ask them why the US and British governments considered using a false flag attack 50 years ago to topple the Syrian regime.
There are many other good questions as well, such as:
– Why would we attack when bombing Syria will only strengthen the hardliners … and harmAmerica’s national security?
– Why attack when the top U.S. military commander says that an attack would be both risky and expensive, and he can’t even say why we’d go to war with Syria?
– Why attack when everyone from troops and military officers to Pentagon war planners all oppose an attack on Syria ?
– Why attack when Congress members who have seen the classified intelligence aren’t even convincedthat the Syrian government used chemical weapons?
– Why attack when the U.S. and Britain have used chemical weapons in the last 10 years … and the U.S. supported the largest chemical weapons attack in history?
– Why attack when the attack itself would be a larger war crime even than chemical weapons use (here, here and here)?
September 8, 2013
Alex appears on Geraldo at Large to discuss Syria.
Paul Craig Roberts
September 8, 2013
“The European race’s last three hundred years of evolutionary progress have all come down to nothing but four words: selfishness, slaughter, shamelessness and corruption.”
It only took the rest of the world 300 years to catch on to the evil that masquerades as “western civilization,” or perhaps it only took the rise of new powers with the confidence to state the obvious. Anyone doubtful of America’s responsibility for the evil needs to read The Untold History of the United States by Oliver Stone and Peter Kuznick.
The “New American Century” proclaimed by the neoconservatives came to an abrupt end on September 6 at the G20 meeting in Russia. The leaders of most of the world’s peoples told Obama that they do not believe him and that it is a violation of international law if the US government attacks Syria without UN authorization.
Putin told the assembled world leaders that the chemical weapons attack was “a provocation on behalf of the armed insurgents in hope of the help from the outside, from the countries which supported them from day one.” In other words, Israel, Saudi Arabia, and Washington–the axis of evil.
China, India, South Africa, Brazil, Indonesia, and Argentina joined Putin in affirming that a leader who commits military aggression without the approval of the UN Security Council puts himself “outside of law.”
In other words, if you defy the world, Obama, you are a war criminal.
The entire world is waiting to see if the Israel Lobby can push Obama into the role of war criminal. Many are betting that Israel will prevail over the weak American president, a cipher devoid of all principle. A couple of decades ago before the advent of the American sheeple, one of the last tough Americans, Admiral Tom Moorer, Chief of Naval Operations and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, publicly declared that “no US president can stand up to Israel.” America’s highest ranking military officer could not get an honest investigation of the Israeli attack on the USS Liberty.
We are yet to see an American president who can stand up to Israel. Or, for that matter, a Congress that can. Or a media.
The Obama regime tried to counter its smashing defeat at the G20 Summit by forcing its puppet states to sign a joint statement condemning Syria. However the puppet states qualified their position by stating that they opposed military action and awaited the UN report.
Most of Obama’s bought-and-paid-for “supporters” are impotent, powerless. For example Obama counts the UK as a supporting country because of the personal support of the discredited UK prime minister, David Cameron, despite the fact that Cameron was repudiated by the British Parliament in a vote that prohibits British participation in another of Washington’s war crimes. So, although Cameron cannot bring the British people and the British government with him, Obama counts the UK as a supporter of Obama’s attack on Syria. Clearly, this is a desperate count of “supporting countries.”
The Turkish puppet government, which has been shooting its peacefully demonstrating citizens down in the streets, with no protest from Obama or the Israel Lobby, supports “holding Syria accountable,” but not itself, of course, or Washington.
The puppet states of Canada and Australia, powerless countries, neither of which carry one ounce of world influence, have lined up to do the bidding of their Washington master. The entire point of having the top government job in Canada and Australia is the payoff from Washington.
The Obama cipher also claims the support of Japan and the Republic of Korea, another two countries devoid of all diplomatic influence and power of any kind. Helpless Japan is on the verge of being destroyed by the Fukushima nuclear disaster, for which it has no solution. As the radiation leaks spread into the aquifer upon which Tokyo and surrounding areas rely, Japan is faced with the possibility of having to relocate 40 million people.
Saudi Arabia, implicated in the transfer to al-Nusra rebels of the chemical weapons used in the attack, supports Washington, knowing that otherwise its tyranny is toast. Even the neoconservatives headed by Obama’s shrill National Security Advisor, Susan Rice, want to overthrow the Saudis.
Obama claims also to have support from France and Germany. However both Hollande and Merkel have stated clearly that a diplomatic solution, not war, is their first choice and that the outcome rests on the UN.
As for Italy and Spain’s support, both governments are hoping to be rewarded with the Federal Reserve printing enough dollars to bail out their indebted economies so that both governments are not overthrown in the streets for their acquiescence to the looting of their countries by international banksters. Like so many Western governments, those of Italy and Spain, and, of course, Greece, support the international banksters, not their own citizens.
The president of the European Commission has declared that the European Union, the central overlord over Britain, France, Germany, Italy, and Spain, does not support a military solution to the Syrian Crisis. “The European Union is certain that the efforts should be aimed at a political settlement,” Jose Manuel Barroso told reporters at the G20 meeting. The EU has the power to issue arrest warrants for the heads of EU governments that participate in war crimes.
What this reveals is that the support behind the liar Obama is feeble and limited. The ability of the Western countries to dominate international politics came to an end at the G20 meeting. The moral authority of the West is completely gone, shattered and eroded by countless lies and shameless acts of aggression based on nothing but lies and self-interests. Nothing remains of the West’s “moral authority,” which was never anything but a cover for self-interest, murder, and genocide.
The West has been destroyed by its own governments, who have told too many self-serving lies, and by its capitalist corporations, who offshored the West’s jobs and technology to China, India, Indonesia, and Brazil, depriving the Western governments of a tax base and the support of its citizens.
It is difficult to know whether citizens in the West hate their corrupt governments any less than do Muslims, whose lives and countries have been devastated by Western aggression, or than do citizens of third world countries who have been impoverished by being looted by predatory First World financial organizations.
The idiot Western governments have pissed away their clout. There is no prospect whatsoever of the neoconservative fantasy of US hegemony being exercised over Russia, China, India, Brazil, South Africa, South America, Iran. These countries can establish their own system of international payments and finance and leave the dollar standard whenever they wish. One wonders why they wait. The US dollar is being printed in unbelievable quantities and is no longer qualified to be the world reserve currency. The US dollar is on the verge of total worthlessness.
The G20 Summit made it clear that the world is no longer willing to go along with the West’s lies and murderous ways. The world has caught on to the West. Every country now understands that the bailouts offered by the West are merely mechanisms for looting the bailed-out countries and impoverishing the people.
In the 21st century Washington has treated its own citizens the way it treats citizens of third world countries. Untold trillions of dollars have been lavished on a handful of banks, while the banks threw millions of Americans out of their homes and seized any remaining assets of the broken families.
US corporations had their taxes cut to practically nothing, with few paying any taxes at all, while the corporations gave the jobs and careers of millions of Americans to the Chinese and Indians. With those jobs went US GDP, tax base, and economic power, leaving Americans with massive budget deficits, a debased currency, and bankrupt cities, such as Detroit, which once was the manufacturing powerhouse of the world.
How long before Washington shoots down its own homeless, hungry, and protesting citizens in the streets?
Washington represents Israel and a handful of powerful organized private interests. Washington represents no one else. Washington is a plague upon the American people and a plague upon the world.
Classified Syria Intelligence Fails to Prove Assad Used Chemical Weapons
September 8, 2013
The administration’s public case for chemical weapons use by the Syrian government is extremely weak, and former high-level intelligence officers say that publicly-available information proves that the Syrian government likely did not carry out the chemical weapons attacks.
The Obama administration claims that classified intelligence proves that it was the Assad government which carried out the attacks.
But numerous congressional members who have seen the classified intelligence information say that it is no better than the public war brief … and doesn’t prove anything.
Congressman Justin Amash said last week:
What I heard in Obama admn briefing actually makes me more skeptical of certain significant aspects of Pres’s case for attacking
He noted yesterday, after attending another classified briefing and reviewing more classified materials:
Attended another classified briefing on #Syria & reviewed add’l materials. Now more skeptical than ever. Can’t believe Pres is pushing war.
And today, Amash wrote:
If Americans could read classified docs, they’d be even more against #Syria action. Obama admn’s public statements are misleading at best.
Congressman Tom Harkin said:
I have just attended a classified Congressional briefing on Syria that quite frankly raised more questions than it answered. I found the evidence presented by Administration officials to be circumstantial.
Congressman Michael Burgess said:
Yes, I saw the classified documents. They were pretty thin.
Yahoo News reports:
New Hampshire Democratic Rep. Carol Shea-Porter, for instance, left Thursday’s classified hearing and said she was opposed to the effort “now so more than ever.”
“I think there’s a long way to go for the president to make the case,” she said after the briefing. “It does seem there is a high degree of concern and leaning no.”
Senator Joe Manchin announced he was voting “no” for a Syria strike right after hearing a classified intelligence brieifng.
Congressman Alan Grayson points out in the New York Times:
The documentary record regarding an attack on Syria consists of just two papers: a four-page unclassified summary and a 12-page classified summary. The first enumerates only the evidence in favor of an attack. I’m not allowed to tell you what’s in the classified summary, but you can draw your own conclusion. [I.e. it was no more impressive than the 4-page public version.]
On Thursday I asked the House Intelligence Committee staff whether there was any other documentation available, classified or unclassified. Their answer was “no.”
The Syria chemical weapons summaries are based on several hundred underlying elements of intelligence information. The unclassified summary cites intercepted telephone calls, “social media” postings and the like, but not one of these is actually quoted or attached — not even clips from YouTube. (As to whether the classified summary is the same, I couldn’t possibly comment, but again, draw your own conclusion.)
And yet we members are supposed to accept, without question, that the proponents of a strike on Syria have accurately depicted the underlying evidence, even though the proponents refuse to show any of it to us or to the American public.
In fact, even gaining access to just the classified summary involves a series of unreasonably high hurdles.
We have to descend into the bowels of the Capitol Visitors Center, to a room four levels underground. Per the instructions of the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, note-taking is not allowed.
Once we leave, we are not permitted to discuss the classified summary with the public, the media, our constituents or even other members. Nor are we allowed to do anything to verify the validity of the information that has been provided.
And this is just the classified summary. It is my understanding that the House Intelligence Committee made a formal request for the underlying intelligence reports several days ago. I haven’t heard an answer yet. And frankly, I don’t expect one.
By refusing to disclose the underlying data even to members of Congress, the administration is making it impossible for anyone to judge, independently, whether that statement is correct.
The rush to war based upon skewed intelligence is very similar to Iraq.
Asia Times Online
Yes We Scan. Yes We Drone. And Yes We Bomb. The White House’s propaganda blitzkrieg to sell the Tomahawking of Syria to the US Congress is already reaching pre-bombing maximum spin – gleefully reproduced by US corporate media.
And yes, all parallels to Iraq 2.0 duly came to fruition when US Secretary of State John Kerry pontificated that Bashar al-Assad "now joins the list of Adolf Hitler and Saddam Hussein" as an evil monster. Why is Cambodia’s Pol Pot never mentioned? Oh yes, because the US supported him.
Every single tumbleweed in the Nevada desert knows who’s itching for war on Syria; vast sectors of the industrial-military complex; Israel; the House of Saud; the "socialist" Francois Hollande in France, who has wet dreams with Sykes-Picot. Virtually nobody is lobbying Congress NOT to go to war.
And all the frantic war lobbying may even be superfluous; Nobel Peace Prize winner and prospective bomber Barack Obama has already implied – via hardcore hedging of the "I have decided that the United States should take military action" kind – that he’s bent on attacking Syria no matter what Congress says.
Obama’s self-inflicted "red line" is a mutant virus; from "a shot across the bow" it morphed into a "slap on the wrist" and now seems to be "I’m the Bomb Decider". Speculation about his real motives is idle. His Hail Mary pass of resorting to an extremely unpopular Congress packed with certified morons may be a cry for help (save me from my stupid "red line"); or – considering the humanitarian imperialists of the Susan Rice kind who surround him – he’s hell bent on entering another war for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) and the House of Saud lobby under the cover of "moral high ground". Part of the spin is that "Israel must be protected". But the fact is Israel is already over-protected by an AIPAC remote-controlled United States Congress. 
What about the evidence?
The former "cheese-eating surrender monkeys" are doing their part, enthusiastically supporting the White House "evidence" with a dodgy report of their own, largely based on YouTube intel. 
Even Fox News admitted that the US electronic intel essentially came from the 8200 unit of the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) – their version of the NSA.  Here, former UK ambassador Craig Murray convincingly debunks the Israeli intercepted intel scam.
The most startling counterpunch to the White House spin remains the Mint Press News report by AP correspondent Dale Gavlak on the spot, in Ghouta, Damascus, with anti-Assad residents stressing that "certain rebels received chemical weapons via the Saudi intelligence chief, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, and were responsible for carrying out the gas attack”.
I had a jolt when I first read it – as I have been stressing the role of Bandar Bush as the dark arts mastermind behind the new Syria war strategy (See Bandar Bush, ‘liberator’ of Syria, Asia Times Online, August 13, 2013).
Then there’s the fact that Syrian Army commandos, on August 24, raiding "rebel" tunnels in the Damascus suburb of Jobar, seized a warehouse crammed with chemicals required for mixing "kitchen sarin". The commando was hit by some form of nerve agent and sent samples for analysis in Russia. This evidence certainly is part of President Vladimir Putin’s assessment of the White House claims as totally unconvincing.
On August 27, Saleh Muslim, head of the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD), told Reuters the attack was "aimed at framing Assad”. And in case the UN inspectors found the "rebels" did it, "everybody would forget it". The clincher; "Are they are going to punish the Emir of Qatar or the King of Saudi Arabia, or Mr Erdogan of Turkey?"
So, in a nutshell, no matter how it happened, the locals in Ghouta said Jabhat al-Nusra did it; and Syrian Kurds believe this was a false flag to frame Damascus.
By now, any decent lawyer would be asking cui bono? What would be Assad’s motive – to cross the "red line" and launch a chemical weapons attack on the day UN inspectors arrive in Damascus, just 15 kilometers away from their hotel?
This is the same US government who sold the world the narrative of a bunch of unskilled Arabs armed with box cutters hijacking passenger jets and turning them into missiles smack in the middle of the most protected airspace on the planet, on behalf of an evil transnational organization.
So now this same evil organization is incapable of launching a rudimentary chemical weapons attack with DIY rockets – a scenario I first outlined even before Gavlak’s report.  Here is a good round-up of the "rebels" dabbling with chemical weapons. Additionally, in late May, Turkish security forces had already found sarin gas held by hardcore Jabhat al-Nusra jihadis.
So why not ask Bandar Bush?
We need to keep coming back over and over again to that fateful meeting in Moscow barely four weeks ago between Putin and Bandar Bush. 
Bandar was brazen enough to tell Putin he would "protect" the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. He was brazen enough to say he controls all Chechens jihadis from the Caucasus to Syria. All they needed was a Saudi green light to go crazy in Russia’s underbelly.
He even telegraphed his next move; "There is no escape from the military option, because it is the only currently available choice given that the political settlement ended in stalemate. We believe that the Geneva II Conference will be very difficult in light of this raging situation."
That’s a monster understatement – because the Saudis never wanted Geneva II in the first place. Under the House of Saud’s ultra-sectarian agenda of fomenting the Sunni-Shi’ite divide everywhere, the only thing that matters is to break the alliance between Iran, Syria and Hezbollah by all means necessary.
The House of Saud’s spin du jour is that the world must "prevent aggression against the Syrian people". But if "the Syrian people" agrees to be bombed by the US, the House of Saud also agrees. 
Compared to this absurdity, Muqtada al-Sadr’s reaction in Iraq stands as the voice of reason. Muqtada supports the "rebels" in Syria – unlike most Shi’ites in Iraq; in fact he supports the non-armed opposition, stressing the best solution is free and fair elections. He rejects sectarianism – as fomented by the House of Saud. And as he knows what an American military occupation is all about, he also totally rejects any US bombing.
The Bandar Bush-AIPAC strategic alliance will take no prisoners to get its war. In Israel, Obama is predictably being scorned for his "betrayal and cowardice" in the face of "evil". The Israeli PR avalanche on congress centers on the threat of a unilateral strike on Iran if the US government does not attack Syria. As a matter of fact congress would gleefully vote for both. Their collective IQ may be sub-moronic, but some may be led to conclude that the only way to "punish" the Assad government is to have the US doing the heavy work as the Air Force for the myriad "rebels" and of course jihadis – in the way the Northern Alliance in Afghanistan, the Kurdish peshmerga in Iraq and the anti-Gaddafi mercenaries in Libya duly profited.
So here, in a nutshell, we have the indispensable nation that drenched North Vietnam with napalm and agent orange, showered Fallujah with white phosphorus and large swathes of Iraq with depleted uranium getting ready to unleash a "limited", "kinetic" whatever against a country that has not attacked it, or any US allies, and everything based on extremely dodgy evidence and taking the "moral high-ground".
Anyone who believes the White House spin that this will be just about a few Tomahawks landing on some deserted military barracks should rent a condo in Alice in Wonderland. The draft already circulating in Capitol Hill is positively scary. 
And even if this turns out to be a "limited", "kinetic" whatever, it will only perpetuate the chaos. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has referred to it as "controlled chaos". Not really; the Empire of Chaos is now totally out of control.
September 8, 2013
The corporate interests driving the United States, its resources, and policy, have invoked dead children in the latest and grisliest propaganda campaign yet, directed at the American public to build support for an otherwise unjustified and universally unwanted war with Syria.
Image: The Summer of 1939, after staging border incidents to frame Poland for unwarranted aggression, Hitler orders the Nazi invasion of Poland. This would not be the first or last time a Western nation used a manufactured “casus belli” to start a war of aggression, now considered a Nuremberg offense and a crime against world peace.
The headline of CNN’s “First on CNN: Videos show glimpse into evidence for Syria intervention,” suggests that by watching the grotesque videos, some sort of evidence exists to justify an assault on Syria. Instead, the videos only show yet again, the crime, and only the crime – a crime which no one, including the Syrian government, denies occurred. What is missing, as has been the case since the US leveled accusations against the Syrian government on August 21, 2013, is any evidence at all as to who actually committed this crime.
Even upon reading the US’ own assessments of the incident reveal there is no evidence. The best the US can say is [emphasis added]:
The United States Government assesses with high confidence that the Syrian government carried out a chemical weapons attack in the Damascus suburbs on August 21, 2013.
Assessing with “high confidence” is not enough to execute a single criminal within the US justice system, yet somehow is enough to justify a military assault on a sovereign nation on the other side of the planet, whichposes no threat to the United States, and will inevitably lead to the death of Syrian soldiers and civilians, while assisting sectarian extremists, many of whom openly pledge allegiance to Al Qaeda. At face value, the US has no case against Syria, and no credibility after habitually using equally tenuous evidence as justification for military assaults against Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and beyond.
That CNN is using dead children as “evidence” indicates that the dubious media outlet is attempting to manipulate the American public on the most visceral emotional level possible to sell a war the corporate interests CNN represents desires.
CNN and other Western outlets, have been caught overtly fabricating stories throughout the subversion of Syria, starting in 2011 when they disingenuously portrayed the flooding of Syria with armed extremists as the “Arab Spring,” up to and including featured interviews with “Syria Danny,” who was later revealed to be staging gun fire in the background of theatrical (and fabricated) casualty reports given to CNN’s Anderson Cooper.
Exploiting dead children to manipulate the public emotionally enables the US to circumvent not only its absolute lack of evidence, but hopefully the myriad of logical conclusions an otherwise rational, intelligent person might draw.
Regarding US Claims
US Claim #1: The Syrian “Regime” Used Chemical Weapons in a Desperate Bid to Save Damascus.
Reality: The US claims in its assessment that the Syrian government used chemical weapons in a desperate struggle for Damascus:
The Syrian regime has initiated an effort to rid the Damascus suburbs of opposition forces using the area as a base to stage attacks against regime targets in the capital. The regime has failed to clear dozens of Damascus neighborhoods of opposition elements, including neighborhoods targeted on August 21, despite employing nearly all of its conventional weapons systems. We assess that the regime’s frustration with its inability to secure large portions of Damascus may have contributed to its decision to use chemical weapons on August 21.
Yet it appears that mostly women and children were the victims of the attack – apparently killed in the middle of the night while they slept.
The US and its collaborators expect the world to believe: that the Syrian government risked using chemical weapons in Damascus, under the nose of UN inspectors, to clear out stalwart “opposition” fighters, and only managed to mass murder women and children in the process while giving the West a long-desired justification for military intervention. And despite “employing nearly all of its conventional weapons systems” and allegedly also sarin nerve gas, the Ghouta area was still under terrorist control after the attack.
It should be noted that Ghouta is on the very edge of Damascus, facing open country that stretches to the Al Qaeda infested Syrian-Iraqi border and the extremist hotbed of Al Anbar province in Iraq – implicating another, and the most likely culprit, Al Qaeda.
US Claim #2: The “Opposition” Lacks the Capabilities to Carry Out Such an Attack.
Reality: The US, in its assessment states:
We assess that the scenario in which the opposition executed the attack on August 21 is highly unlikely. The body of information used to make this assessment includes intelligence pertaining to the regime’s preparations for this attack and its means of delivery, multiple streams of intelligence about the attack itself and its effect, our post-attack observations, and the differences between the capabilities of the regime and the opposition.
The “opposition” in Syria is Al Qaeda. Al Qaeda allegedly carried out the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, destroying three (including Building 7) World Trade Center towers in New York City and striking at the very heart of America’s trillion dollar military might, the Pentagon itself – killing in a single day nearly 3,000 using nothing more than box-cutters, pepper spray, and 4 commandeered aircraft.
The US State Department since the very beginning of the violence has acknowledged that the most prominent fighting group operating inside Syria is Al Qaeda, more specifically, the al Nusra front. The US State Department’s official press statement titled, “Terrorist Designations of the al-Nusrah Front as an Alias for al-Qa’ida in Iraq,” states explicitly that:
Since November 2011, al-Nusrah Front has claimed nearly 600 attacks – ranging from more than 40 suicide attacks to small arms and improvised explosive device operations – in major city centers including Damascus, Aleppo, Hamah, Dara, Homs, Idlib, and Dayr al-Zawr. During these attacks numerous innocent Syrians have been killed.
It is also confirmed that many fighters joining al Nusra come from abroad, including from the recently decimated Libya, where a significant arsenal of chemical weapons have fallen into the hands of a sectarian extremist government which is openly funding and arming terrorists in Syria.
The US and its collaborators expect the world to believe: that despite Al Qaeda having struck at the very heart of US military might, after circumventing a trillion dollar defense system of unprecedented capabilities, it is now somehow incapable of obtaining and using against civilians, chemical weapons – a scenario the US has warned the world of and in fact, used as justification for invading Iraq in 2003. Either we’ve been lied to about the official explanation regarding 9/11, or we’ve been lied to about the capabilities of Al Qaeda in Syria – or more likely, both.
Clearly, at face value, none of what the US proposes regarding the alleged chemical attacks in Syria is rational. The propaganda rolled out against Syria is poorly retreaded lies from the illegal, abhorrent Iraq invasion and occupation and the more recent NATO atrocities committed against the Libyan people who are still suffering from NATO’s “humanitarian intervention” there.
What does it mean when the combined, multi-trillion dollar defense and intelligence resources of the United States, United Kingdom, European Union, Turkey, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and others are categorically incapable of providing a single shred of credible evidence to make their case? That evidence does not exist? Or that it does, but simply points the finger unfavorably in another direction?
Without actual evidence of who committed the crimes showcased on CNN, the first and most important question that must be answered is “cui bono?” – or – to whose benefit? Clearly, the chemical attacks carried out under the nose of UN inspectors, leaving shocking images of dead women and children used to manipulate the public on an emotional level, benefits the special interests driving US, British, European, and Arab policy. These are the same interests who in 2007 openly conspired to initiate a sectarian bloodbath to drown Lebanon, Syria, and Iran – a documented conspiracy being realized in full, beginning in 2011.
The danger of a Syrian government surviving the insidious machinations of Western special interests and restoring order in a unified Syria is an unacceptable outcome for Washington, London, Paris, Riyadh, and Tel Aviv. The unprecedented impetus behind this unpopular, universally opposed war with Syria reeks of desperation and a corporate-financier axis that has used and abused all of its tricks one too many times.
Whatever the outcome in Syria may be, these corporate-financier interests have exposed themselves and have long-since resigned their legitimacy. All that they do now, they do in the open, against the will of the world, amidst growing dissent, and against the background of a socio-technological paradigm shift undermining their institutions and international rackets permanently. However vigorously these interests appear to be digging their grave, it is still, ultimately a grave.
No law will stop Obama’s democracy-bombs over Syria
Nile Bowie is a political analyst and photographer currently residing in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
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Published time: September 05, 2013 13:47
US President Barack Obama (AFP Photo/Jewel Samad)
Regardless of how Congress votes, Obama is going to attack Syria. The president is doing his best to avoid constructive dialogue when the focus should be international law, not ‘international norms’ as defined by Washington.
As world leaders descend on the Russian city of St. Petersburg to discuss global tax regimes and international trade, this year’s G20 Summit is really a G20+1, with an extra seat allocated for the massive elephant in the room.
Many of the leaders attending have brought along their foreign ministers, as the summit will also informally serve as a global platform to discuss the sorry state of affairs in Syria. One can only speculate as to the substance of any exchanges between President Putin and his American counterpart and forced smiles will be in no short supply.
“He is lying and knows he is lying. It’s sad,” said Putin, of John Kerry’s address to the US Congress. That about sums it up – the lies and deceit of the Obama administration are so breathtaking, so innumerable, and they’re being trumpeted knowingly and shamelessly. Want a taste of highly moral and ethical narrative being championed in favor of “the Syrian people?” Look no further than the New York Times, with its recent headline “Bomb Syria, Even If It Is Illegal,” which argues that Obama and his poodles should “declare that international law has evolved and that they don’t need Security Council approval to intervene in Syria."
The establishment press is calling for blood, and they’re claiming the moral high ground while doing it – slightly pathological? You bet. The insane are really running the asylum on this one.
The Russians have been pushing for Geneva II with focused perseverance, but Barry and his flesh-eating rebels aren’t going to let that happen – not without a substantial sprinkling of Tomahawk cruise missiles over Damascus at the very least. The trigger-happy White House, with the most sophisticated military arsenal in the history of man, has demonstrated that it is unwilling to acknowledge any evidence that contradicts its cooker-cutter narrative – it is not open to reasoned arguments, and so the world yet again faces a dangerous precedent due to US intransigence.
To the surprise of many, the British parliament made clear that it would not drink the Cameron kool-aid, and even Ban Ki-moon chimed in to remind the Commander-in-Chief that the use of force is only legal in self-defense or with Security Council authorization.
Members of CodePink, Tighe Barry (L) and Medea Benjamin (2nd L) protest as U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (R) arrives at a hearing on "Syria: Weighing the Obama Administration’s Response" before the House Foreign Affairs Committee September 4, 2013 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. (Alex Wong/Getty Images/AFP )
Air Force One flies above the law
International law? Pssh! Obama knows his bombs-for-peace program isn’t going to get past Russia and China, and in the absence of a unified coalition of the willing, he’s been forced to seek approval from Congress to maintain the façade of legitimacy.
When reading in-between the lines, it’s clear that the Obama administration will proceed with an attack on Syria whether Congress gives the green light or not – in all likelihood, Congress will vote ‘Yes’. The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) has broken its silence on Syria, and called for war.
Unfortunately, Congress can be bought and be sure that lobbyist dollars are being dealt out faster than you can say ‘Jabhat al-Nusra’ to seal the vote. “Emperor” Obama insists that he is not required to consult Congress to seek approval for his Syrian adventure, but did so anyway after receiving a letter from more than 160 members of the House of Representatives reminding him that to take the country to war without congressional approval is an impeachable offense, which doesn’t exactly bode well for his credentials as a constitutional lawyer.
And what about the evidence? The US government insists that it has “high confidence” that the Assad regime used chemical weapons, and that the evidence is so compelling that Washington is willing to go to war – before the UN team of chemical weapon experts have yet to make a determination. If you question this narrative, you are a conspiracy theorist. But what about the UN’s commission of inquiry led by Carla Del Ponte that implicated the rebels with using chemical weapons in Khan al-Assal? What about the Russian reports that claim the projectiles were crudely produced and clearly not military grade or consistent with the weapons in Assad’s stockpiles? What about reports that rebel forces were caught with cylinders of sarin nerve gas in southern Turkey near the Syrian border? As far as Obama is concerned, all of that has already been sent down the memory hole. It’s not the media’s job to present this information in a balanced and unbiased way, its only function is to sell war and educate the public about the benefits of twerking, as displayed by Miley Cyrus last week, stealing the headlines on CNN as US warships amassed in the Mediterranean.
A picture downloaded on September 4, 2013 from the US Navy website and taken on September 3, 2013 shows an F/A-18C Hornet assigned to the Blue Diamonds of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 146 launching off the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz in the Red Sea. (AFP Photo)
Nobody believes the “limited strike” assurances
Just as in Iraq, the war on Syria is being sold as “limited strike” designed to hasten the rebel advance, but the original draft resolution for military intervention that Congress is set to vote on suggests otherwise. The wording of the text is so broad that Obama could virtually get away with anything he pleases. For example, the phrase “The President is authorized to use the Armed Forces of the United States as he determines to be necessary and appropriate” is deliberately vague. The intentional legal ambiguousness of the text raised eyebrows in Congress (clearly the executive branch was trying to pull a fast one) so much so that Kerry was forced to prohibit "boots on the ground," which he argued against on the grounds of Obama having options if Syria "imploded".
If there is a real danger of Syria imploding, which it very well might under a sustained campaign of US aggression, then the limited strike rhetoric should be seen as what is it – empty assurances designed to rubber stamp the war as quickly as possible.
The drive to military intervention in Syria is transparently a move to topple the legal authorities in Damascus. If that happens, it would create a power vacuum that would immediately destabilize the country and pit dozens of warring factions against one another as they vie for power – Syria explodes. Al-Qaeda and other jihadi militias will declare caliphates all over Syria while persecuting Alawite minorities and Assad loyalists. The instability could lead to the fracturing of Syria under ethnic and sectarian lines into several smaller states, and the chaos would swallow the currently war-torn and destabilized Iraq.
The toppling of Assad is a transparent declaration of war against Hezbollah and Iran and could lead to a major regional conflict that would kill large numbers of people. In essence, nothing about this situation indicates that it will be limited. Moreover, the United States has few strategic benefits here, while Saudi Arabia and Israel are dragging Washington by the nose into this conflict. When Kerry recently testified in front of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, he divulged that the House of Saud and Qatar even offered to bankroll the whole US operation in Syria – tough bargain for cash-strapped Washington hawks to pass up!
A handout image released by the Syrian opposition’s Shaam News Network on July 29, 2013, shows an aerial view of destruction in the al-Khalidiyah neighbourhood of the central Syrian city of Homs. (AFP Photo/Shaam News Network)
Obama wears rainbow suspenders
Few have speculated about the recent “joint” missile launch conducted by the US and Israel, which was first denied, then classified as an atmospheric rocket for scientific research purposes, and finally it was admitted to be a test launch of a military rocket.
Nobody, not even NATO, was informed about it and the sketchy cover story only heightens suspicions. The Pentagon eventually admitted that the launch was carried out with technical support from the US Defense Department. This incident was probably not a legitimate Israeli missile defense system test – a launch during the incredibly tense situation in the region suggests a quality of psychological warfare and panic creation, but ultimately the Americans were measuring the preparedness and response of the Syrians to an unannounced missile launch.
Either way, the move was entirely reckless, but nothing else can be expected from Washington and Tel Aviv. As Putin said, the US is lying and it knows it’s lying. The US has fueled the Syrian conflict from the beginning under the euphemistic guise of “democracy promotion” – first by training and financing anti-Assad activists, and once they built momentum in Syria, arms and foreign fighters began pouring in.
The Syrian conflict could not have reached this point without a steady influx of aid from the US, via its stooges in Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and Qatar. Is it really worth it to pass the point of no return by setting off a powder keg in the region? The human losses thus far could pale in comparison to what would follow in a wider regional war. The further destruction of lives, of culture, and even of the Syrian state as it exists is what will follow.
If Washington was serious about peace, it would have called off the rebels and channeled all of its diplomatic muscle into Geneva II, and it would cooperate with Russia, the other largest stakeholder in this conflict. Obama could have met with Putin during this G20 Summit to bridge the differences and put effort behind a political solution, but no.
Obama will use his trip to Russia to meet with gay activists, a childish gesture that is entirely political – a weak attempt to stick it to Putin for his stance on various issues. Meeting with activists and members of civil society is not wrong in and of itself, but the fact that Obama chose to meet with LBGT activists at a time when his cooperation with Putin is most needed on Syria is a move that speaks volumes. Obama is demonstrably doing everything possible to avoid any attempts to make peace through dialogue.