Here it comes again. As the enemies of peace continue to pressure a new US President into deeper war commitments overseas, and as Washington’s Deep State works relentlessly opposing Russian moves in Syria at every turn, the war drums have started again – beating harder than ever now, clamouring for a new US-led attack on Syria. This morning we saw the familiar theme emerge, and just in time to provide a convenient backdrop to this week’s Brussels’ ‘Peace Talks’ and conference on “Syria’s Future”.
The US-led ‘Coalition’ prepares to make its end-run into Syria to ‘Retake Raqqa,’ and impose its Safe Zones in order to partition Syria, more media demonization of the Syrian government appears to be needed by the West.
On cue, the multi-billion dollar US and UK media machines sprung into overdrive this morning over reports based primarily from their own ‘activist’ media outlets. Aleppo Media Center and others embedded in the Al Nusra-dominated terrorist stronghold of Idlib, Syria, alongside their media counterpart the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) funded by the UK and EU, are all now claiming that the Syrian and Russian Airforces have launched a chemical weapons airstrike killing civilians in Idlib.
In their report today entitled, “Syria conflict: ‘Chemical attack’ in Idlib kills 58”, the BBC is also alleging in their report that Sarin gas was used.
The alleged “chemical airstrikes” are said to have taken place in the town of Khan Sheikhoun, about 50km south of the city of Idlib.
Predictably, the BBC and other similar reports by CNN, have triggered a wave of ‘consensus condemnation’ and indignation by the usual voices, the UN’s Staffan de Mistura, Francois Hollande, and, of course, UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, who said that President Bashar al-Assad “would be guilty of a war crime” if it somehow be proven that his ‘regime’ was responsible.
“Bombing your own civilians with chemical weapons is unquestionably a war crime and they must be held to account,” he said (reported by BBC).
But is the mainstream media’s version of events what actually happened?
The BBC claims in their article that, “Opposition activists said Syrian government or Russian warplanes carried out the strikes.” This claim should be checked against any Russian air sorties scheduled for the same period. As of this morning, Russia’s defence ministry has stated that it had not carried out any air strikes the area.
The problem here is that the BBC and others are not only taking ‘opposition activists’ reports of a chemical attack at face value, they are also elevating claims that the Syrian and Russian airforces were then later hitting the medical clinics who were treating the survivors:
“Later, aircraft fired rockets at local clinics treating survivors, medics and activists said.”
Expectedly, as with past claims of “chemical attacks,” the notorious US-UK funded ‘NGO’, the White Helmets have already played a central role in scripting the narrative for this latest chemical attack.
As with so many other previous reports on Syria, the BBC, CNN and AP’s reporting relies exclusively on “opposition activists” and “opposition media agencies,” including the ‘pro-opposition’ Step News agency’, the Edlib Media Center (EMC), and ‘opposition journalists’ like photographer Hussein Kayal, as well as an unnamed “AFP news agency journalist”.
The unnamed “AFP journalist” is particularly interesting, as it seems to be the source of a key portion of the BBC’s version of events:
“An AFP news agency journalist saw a young girl, a woman and two elderly people dead at a hospital, all with foam still visible around their mouths.”
The journalist also reported that the same facility was hit by a rocket on Tuesday afternoon, bringing down rubble on top of doctors treating the injured.”
However, as you read further down the BBC report, the story gets less certain, as the story becomes very loose:
“The source of the projectile was not clear, but the EMC and the opposition Local Co-ordination Committees (LCC) network said warplanes had targeted several clinics.”
After their source the SOHR refused to say which “chemical” was supposedly dropped, the BBC quickly moved in to fill in the blanks by framing the story that the Syrian-Russian Airforces had launched a “Sarin Attack”.
“The SOHR said it was unable to say what exactly was dropped. However, the EMC and LCC said it was believed to be the nerve agent Sarin, which is highly toxic and considered 20 times as deadly as cyanide.”
At no point in its reporting does the BBC ever express any skepticism that maybe their ‘activist’ sources could be providing false or misleading information. Ultimately, these reports can be used to trigger renewed calls by Western officials for military strikes against the ‘Syrian Regime’ – which was exactly what happened today after these news stories were circulated. Within a few hours after these reports circulated, Congressman Adam Kinzinger (R, Illinois) came on CNN with Wolf Blitzer who asked Kinzinger point blank: What can be done to remove this regime? Kinzinger then replied by calling outright for US airstrikes to “Take out the Assad Regime in Syria”, including “cratering their airstrips so no planes can take off” and creating a “No Fly Zone” over Syria.
These statements, as bombastic as they may sound, are serious and should not be taken casually. The problem is they are based on a series of lies. Of course, Kinzinger was followed on-air by John McCain protesting against US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s recent comments this week that, “The Syrian people should be able to choose their own (political) future” – effectively holding the overwhelming majority of Syrian in contempt for supporting their government.
CNN Senior Middle East correspondent Arwa Damon also chimed in with Blitzer from New York, and without any real evidence presented as to what has happened and who is to blame, she swiftly concluded that the Idlib “chemical attack” was the work of ‘the regime’ and that America cannot stand back idly and do nothing, and how this would show a “lack of humanity,”
The BBC does briefly mention an alternative report, but carefully tried to discredit it in the court of political opinion by labelling it as from “Pro-Government journalists,” stated here:
“Pro-government journalists later cited military sources as saying there had been an explosion at an al-Qaeda chemical weapons factory in Khan Sheikhoun that was caused either by an air strike or an accident.”
This story of Syria striking a munitions facility is just as likely, if not more so, than the current conspiracy making the rounds in the Western mainstream and Gulf media, and was actually reported by TASS news agency out of Moscow on April 4th, but rather than follow-up on this, the BBC, CNN and the mainstream chorus have immediately written it off and opted instead to pursue the narrative which will allow them to expedite the military escalation which they have expressed on record since at least 2013. If this were a criminal prosecution, the rebel-terrorist-coalition axis has the overwhelming primary motive, as well as expressed intent to escalate – documented on countless occasions. So why is their no rational line of inquiry here?
As expected, the UN affiliated chemical weapons watchdog, the OPCW, quickly announced they were “seriously concerned” about the alleged chemical attack, and that they were now “gathering and analysing information from all available sources”. One hopes that this will entail more than just looking at ‘activist’ or White Helmets material being circulated on the US and western media.
Incredibly, Kinzinger also said on national TV with CNN that people should ignore any stories which DO NOT implicate the Syrian government waged chemical attacks against its own people in East Ghouta in 2013 – and that these should be dismissed as “fake news” put out by ‘the Russians and the FSB.’ By this statement, Kinzinger is essentially saying that award-winning American journalists Seymour Hersh and Robert Parry are akin to being Russian agents. Many in Official Washington pose the fallacious argument that “Obama failed to enforce the Red Line in Syria, and let Assad get away with it (in 2013)”. If we go by the actual facts (see research bibliography below) of the 2013 Ghouta incident, then Assad never crossed the ‘Red Line,’ but the US and Gulf-backed ‘rebels’ absolutely did.
These are the same ‘rebels which Adam Kinzinger himself travelled to northern Syria circa 2013-2014 to provide his personal assurances that these terrorist fighters would be receiving US weapons and TOW missiles which arguably, is responsible for extended the life of this needless proxy war in Syria.
So based on the facts of the Ghouta chemical incident, Rep. Kinzinger is actually wrong and lying in his capacity as a high-ranking House Committee member – and doing so with no accountability from CNN whilst broadcasting to a national audience in the United States. The result of this is millions of Americans and politicians are left misinformed of important events – once again, led by misinformation into another war. This is the fundament problem with mainstream media’s own fake news – it leads to wars, many of them illegal, and always waged on false pretences.
In 2013, the US and UK went on an all-out propaganda blitz to try and implicate the Syrian Government in advance of war votes in both Washington and London. The campaign failed.
Originally published on 2017-04-04
Author: Patrick Henningsen
Source: 21st Century Wire
Origins of images: Facebook, Twitter, Wikimedia, Wikipedia, Flickr, Google, Imageinjection & Pinterest.
Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement!
Donate to Support Us
We would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to keep us digging the truth on history, global politics and international relations.
The ‘mainstream’ Western media is, almost by definition, the last place to consult for honest reporting of Western crimes. Consider the appalling case of Yemen which is consumed by war and an ongoing humanitarian catastrophe.
Since March 2015, a ‘coalition’ of Sunni Arab states led by Saudi Arabia, and supported by the US, Britain and France, has been dropping bombs on neighbouring Yemen. The scale of the bombing is indicated in a recent article by Felicity Arbuthnot – in one year, 330,000 homes, 648 mosques, 630 schools and institutes, and 250 health facilities were destroyed or damaged. The stated aim of ...
It is not only American generals who are irresponsible and declare on the basis of no evidence whatsoever that “Russia is an existential threat to the United States” and also to the Baltic states, Poland, Georgia, Ukraine, and all of Europe. British generals also participate in the warmongering. UK retired general and former NATO commander Sir Richard Shirreff, Deputy Supreme Allied Commander in Europe until 2014, has just declared that nuclear war with Russia is “entirely possible” within the year. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3596977/The-outbreak-nuclear-war-year-West-Putin-entirely-plausible-says-former-NATO-chief-promoting-novel-2017-war-Russia.html
My loyal readers know that I, myself, have been warning for some time about the likelihood of nuclear war. ...
There are 3 Apartheid Israel-related centenaries this week, namely (1) the victorious 31 October 1917 charge of the Australian Light Horse at Beersheba that led to conquest of Palestine by Britain and massive famine, (2) the nefarious and racist UK Balfour Declaration of 2 November 1917 that gave Palestine to Zionists as a Jewish Homeland as an inducement to help keep Russia in WW1, and (3) commencement of the Palestine Genocide (2 million Palestinian deaths from violence, 0.1 million, or imposed deprivation, 1.9 million, since WW1).
History ignored yields history repeated and genocide ignored yields genocide repeated . Anniversaries are useful ...
The United States the use of force against the sovereign state of Syria is a prima facie violation of international law. It is an act of aggression against the UN Member State in violation of the Charter of the United Nations. It therefore gives Syria the right to react in self-defense or a legal justification for the use of force and it gives any other United Nations Member State the right to act in collective self-defense and to support Syrian action against the US This is the basic understanding of the international legal consequences of the United States use of ...
After escalated provocations with Mexico until he obtained the necessary pretext in 1846, President James Polk announced, “War exists,” thus explaining away how it really happened. After defeating Spain, William McKinley said he wanted to “uplift and civilize and Christianize” the Filipinos, and “by God’s grace do the very best we could by them.” But they’d already declared independence, so doing the “best” actually meant allowing the worst — killing and burning villages during a 12-year war of resistance.
In 1947, Harry Truman (image right) wanted to “assist free peoples to work out their own destinies in their own way.” But ...
US duopoly power replaced the eras of Jefferson, Lincoln and Franklin Roosevelt. No JFKs exist, President Kennedy as we recall was a peacemaker assassinated for opposing war, urging nuclear disarmament and the normalization of relations with the Soviet Union.
New Deal, Fair Deal and Great Society programs are heading for history’s dust bin.
Bipartisan neocons infesting Washington want social justice ended, neoliberal enslavement replacing it, fascist police state harshness enforcing it.
America is a gangster state, criminals running it – beginning in the 1990s under Bill Clinton, hardened under George W. Bush, institutionalized under Obama, certain to worsen no matter who succeeds him.
Israel’s Maariv newspaper has revealed that the government of the Zionist state is planning to drop a political bombshell in the coming weeks by presenting a bill in the Knesset (parliament) calling for the annexation of land occupied since 1967. It is likely to have the support of the majority of Knesset members. The newspaper added that the right wing has chosen this time for the move ahead of the US presidential election; America, it is believed, will be too preoccupied to care about what is happening in the occupied Palestinian territories.
Preliminary talks about a first stage have been held, ...
Radio “Liberty” has always been a propaganda ministry. Formerly its propaganda was directed against the Soviet Union. Today it is directed against distinguished Americans who are known and respected for their allegiance to the truth.
Radio Liberty’s latest target is an American scholar who is far more widely respected than Radio Liberty. Like everything else in Washington the two-bit propaganda ministry is carried away by hubris and a mistaken opinion of its own importance.
A Radio Liberty non-entity named Carl Schreck, of whom no one has ever heard, has declared America’s most distinguished Russian scholar, Stephen Cohen, to be “a Putin apologist.”
Key facts about Kosovo’s Islamic Albanian minority of Serbia and the century long drive by Islamic extremists to exterminate Kosovo Serbs from that region:
1389—Muslims defeat Christian Serb defenders in Kosovo, depopulate the area and invite mountain tribe of Albanians, in exchange for converting to Islam, to take over pillaged land from Serbs.
1594—Sinan Pasha, an ethnic Albanian, who was a commander in the Ottoman Turkish Empire, burned the relics of St. Sava at Vracar, Belgrade. St. Sava is the Saint that brought Serbs into Christianity.
1878—Albanian nationalist leaders meet in Prizren, known as the First League of Prizren, to announce the creation ...
I travel frequently to the countries which once made up the now defunct Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, satisfying a passion of mine that stems back to my childhood days. For me, the Balkans’ history, its people and its cultures are both enigmatic and magnetic, as they have been, too, for countless others, of many nationalities, over centuries gone by.
Accounting for the enchantment of the Balkans, its captivating allure, is a challenge to put into writing. Because no words can truly embellish what is one of the most absorbing parts of the world. To understand and feel what it is ...
Fifty years ago this next month (December 1965), with the urging of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the rubber stamp approval of President Lyndon Johnson and Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara, the United States Air Force started secretly spraying the forests of Laos with a deadly herbicide that was known as Agent Orange.
Operation Ranch Hand, whose motto was “Only We Can Prevent Forests” (a shameful takeoff of Smokey the Bear’s admonition), was a desperate, costly and ultimately futile effort to make it a little harder for the National Liberation Front soldiers from North Vietnam to join and supply their ...
The amount of bombs dropped by Americans on the innocent citizens of tiny French Indochina was more than twice the amount of bombs dropped in Europe, Africa and Asia during the Second World War, and this includes bombs dropped on the cities of Hanoi and Haiphong by American hero Senator John McCain, who proudly ran for president on his military record in spite of Nuremberg Counsel for Prosecution General Telford Taylor having said he would have been proud to have prosecuted US flyers shot down while bombing in Vietnam.
What mastery of fake news, blacked out news, selected news and outrageously ...
For decades, consumers of the US media have been fed a series of repeated lies concerning the status of northern Korea. Tales of mass starvation and brutal torture are told over and over, occasionally updated but essentially the same as those told when Washington first realized it could not defeat the national forces headquartered in Pyongyang.
Naturally, these stories become more frequent and considerably more dramatic during those times the US military heightens tensions in the region. While some of these “reports” are probably based in fact, the more revealing aspect of their being told is the lack of context involved in their ...
In the spirit of the New Cold War and following on its success in snuffing out South Stream, the US has prioritized its efforts in obstructing Russia’s Balkan Stream pipeline, and for the most part, they’ve regretfully succeeded for the time being. The first challenge came from the May 2015 Color Revolution attempt in Macedonia, which thankfully was repulsed by the country’s patriotic citizenry. Next up on the destabilization agenda was the political turmoil that threatened to take hold of Greece in the run-up and aftermath of the austerity referendum, the idea being that if Tsipras were deposed, then Balkan ...
Every day signs are looming larger than life as we know it in the wealthiest nation on earth that it’s about to crash and burn, forever changing not for the better. The latest wake-up call arrived in a Guardian article earlier this week. The story features a secret prison not unlike the CIA torture detention centers all over the world whereby the Chicago police hold rounded up US citizens for hours or days at a time for interrogation. The same internationally illegal roundups of suspected “potential terrorists” (which by latest Gestapo America standards can easily be you or me) that the CIA ...
Eighteen years ago, my dying mother asked me to continue working on a book about her father, Jonas Noreika, a famous Lithuanian World War II hero who fought the Communists. Once an opera singer, my mother had passionately devoted herself to this mission and had even gotten a PhD in literature to improve her literary skills. As a journalist, I agreed. I had no idea I was embarking on a project that would lead to a personal crisis, Holocaust denial and an official cover-up by the Lithuanian government.
Growing up in Chicago’s Marquette Park neighborhood — the neighborhood that had the ...
Republican presidential candidate, Donald Trump, published the list of his foreign policy advisers. One of them, claim the US media, is the worst choice possible.
The list of advisers is headed by Senator Jeff Sessions, and includes Keith Kellogg, Carter Page, George Papadopoulos, Walid Phares and Joseph E. Schmitz.
Phares is the former adviser to another presidential candidate, Mitt Romney.
Phares is described as a neo-conservative and “an academic who is involved in Christian militia wing of the civil war in Lebanon”.
US media deemed Phares as an inappropriate analyst of US foreign policy, while one of his statements that is being considered unfitting is regarding NATO’s bombing of Serbia ...
Israel treats Arabs the way Nazis treated Jews – a racist, fascist, white Jewish supremacist (the chosen people nonsense), Arab-hating society systematically ghettoizing and terrorizing people for praying to the wrong God.
Palestinians are treated like subhumans, enduring virtually every type indignity and mistreatment under brutalizing militarized rule, civil justice denied.
Institutionalized racism worse than South African apartheid denies them fundamental human and civil rights. De-Arabization is official Israeli policy. Occupation harshness facilitates slow-motion genocide.
Millions suffer horrifically. Anyone resisting tyranny is eliminated – brutalized, imprisoned or murdered.
Muhammad Allan is a Palestinian political prisoner – rearrested at Barzilai hospital before his release to ...
Note: This article was first published in January 2015.
Since 9/11, the imperial playbook has consisted of a favorite and time-tested tactic: the false flag operation.
Carry out or facilitate a spectacular atrocity. Blame it on the enemy of choice. Issue a lie-infested official narrative, and have the corporate media repeat the lie. Rile up ignorant militant crowds, stoke the hatred, and war-mongering imperial policy planners and their criminal functionaries get what they want: war with the public stamp of approval.
Here we are again.
The Charlie Hebdo incident is being sold as “the French 9/11”. It certainly is, in all of the most ...
Bosnia and Kosovo are two of the biggest exporters of jihadists joining the Islamic State (ISIS) and al-Nusra Front (al-Qaeda’s affiliate in Syria) from the Balkans. As The Cipher Brief reported last month, legacies of the Communist era and the wars of the 1990s – presence of foreign fighters, economic and physical destruction, a lack of funding to rebuild, and the near eradication of moderate Islamic institutions – paved the way for Islamic extremist groups to establish a foothold in both countries. Now, ISIS recruiters are targeting Bosnia and Kosovo, and many Bosnians and Kosovars have left to fight in Syria and ...
Crimes against Humanity: Britain’s Complicity in Saudi Arabia’s Terror Campaign against Yemen
Can Russia Survive Washington’s Attack?
100th Anniversary of Australian Beersheba Charge, UK Balfour Declaration & Palestinian Genocide Commencement
Why the United States’ Use of Force Against Syria Violates International Law
U.S. Presidential Lying is Nothing New
Bipartisan Neocons Infesting Washington: What Prospects for America?
Reviving the Greater Israel Scheme
It is Time to Call Radio “Liberty” What It is: Radio Gestapo America
Kosovo: Key Dates in the Century Long Goal to Create a Greater Albania
The Balkans: Endurance, Endeavour and the Resistance to Foreign Oppression
War Crimes: Agent Orange, Monsanto, Dow Chemical and Other Ugly Legacies of the Vietnam War
Mainstream News and USA’s Heroics in Vietnam: Why the Silence about the 7 Million Dead?
Korea: An Alternative History
A Hybrid War to Break the Balkans?
Totalitarian Rule in America
My Grandfather (Jonas Noreika) wasn’t a Nazi-Fighting War Hero — He was a Brutal Collaborator
Donald Trump’s Foreign Policy Adviser: Al-Qaeda Destroyed the Serbian Army in Kosovo
Exporting Jihad: Bosnia and Kosovo