April 9, 2018
MY CORNER by Boyd Cathey
SYRIA—Again—Some Preliminary Observations: What is Happening and Who Really Stands to Gain from Renewed Involvement?
Like a nightmare or bad dream that just won’t go away, Syria and the multifaceted issues that surround that Middle Eastern country are back in the news as I write this. And, yes, the news reported by our media, both Mainstream and Mainstream-wannabe-Fox, is how, once again, those dastardly Syrian government forces literally used poisoned gas—apparently it was chlorine this time—to attack an entire village, which was held as one of the very last “rebel” towns in the winding-down Syrian civil war.
While there is not yet enough real and hard information—and certainly not enough from on the ground—to focus with certainty on just what happened, there are plenty of questions, very uncomfortable queries, and some serious inconsistencies and problems with the official story-line being put out by both Fox and the Mainstream Media, as well as accepted by the US military and the usual virulently interventionist war-hawks in Congress, most notably Senators Lindsey Graham and John McCain, whose solution for all issues related to Syria is greater American military involvement, directly attacking the army and air force of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, and the proclamation of a “no-fly” zone which is specifically aimed at probable Russian air fighters that, according to Graham, “we should shoot down [them] if they enter it.”
As to the specifics of the attack, here is what The New York Times reports (April 8, 2018):
Dozens of Syrians choked to death after a suspected chemical attack struck the rebel-held suburb of Douma, east of Damascus, with aid groups on Sunday blaming President Bashar al-Assad’s government for the assault and Western governments expressing outrage.
Rescue workers in Syria reported finding at least 42 people dead in their homes from apparent suffocation, and antigovernment activists circulated videos of lifeless men, women and children sprawled out on floors and in stairwells, many with white foam coming from their mouths and nostrils. [https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/08/world/middleeast/syria-chemical-attack-ghouta.html]
But even the Times cannot hide the at-first-glance problems that emerge from their report.
Notice, first, it is “aid groups” that are attributing blame for the purported attack, and that it is so-called “anti-government activists” who are circulating the videos.
And just who are these “aid groups”? As in the case of the last Syrian “false flag” that occurred almost one year ago exactly, it was the notorious pro-rebel “White Helmets,” whose reporting about a sarin gas chemical attack was later almost entirely discredited. Recall that the detailed and comprehensive scientific examination (April 17, 2017) by Dr. Theodore A. Postol, Professor of Science, Technology and National Security Policy at MIT [https://www.globalresearch.ca/assessment-of-white-house-intelligence-report-about-nerve-agent-attack-in-khan-shaykhun-syria/5584867] totally disproved the assertion that the Syrian government of Bashar al-Assad (with Russian support) had gassed the village of Khan Shaykun. Yet, acting on initial reports and intense pressure from the frenetic Neoconservative foreign policy establishment that has sought to surround President Trump, the United States launched air strikes against Syrian government military assets.
We aren’t even certain that a real attack (apparently by air?) took place—we aren’t certain that the film released by those “anti-government activists” (as the Times calls them) to Western reporters of the horrible mayhem inflicted on the victims is video taken in the small, rebel-held stronghold of Douma. None of this has yet been verified; indeed, no inspection teams have entered the town as of yet.
The Russians have offered to send a chemical inspection team, with international involvement, to investigate exactly what happened—but apparently Lindsey Graham and the American foreign policy establishment will have none of that: after all, it might discover some uncomfortable facts that don’t confirm their ideological narrative.
Again, the essential question that always must be asked in these situations is this: Cui bono? To whose benefit is this purported incident, this attack?
Certainly not to the government of Syrian president Bashar al-Assad. Assad, a more secular Muslim, is supported by the totality of Syria’s large Christian population. With strong Russian support he has pretty much destroyed all radical Islamist resistance in most of Syria; he has in so many words, won his civil war. The rebels, who, unlike the misleading reports of John McCain who claimed (back in 2013) that they were “moderates” (Free Syrian Army), have turned out to be just as Islamist and just as terrorist-involved as ISIS militants, as Matthew Boyle pointed out in a report on September 18, 2014:
Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) and his aides swear the Syrian “rebels” he was pictured last year with weren’t ISIS members or supporters, and the mainstream media is by and large buying the 2008 GOP presidential nominee’s story. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) has endured brutal criticism...for questioning just who McCain posed with. But a closer look at the situation tells perhaps a different story than McCain’s office or the mainstream media have pushed. The criticism of McCain centers around how the Arizona senator met with Syrian rebel leaders in May 2013 when he visited the country. McCain posed for photographs with those people, and since then rumors have sprouted up across the Internet that he met with ISIS or some other terrorist kidnappers or nefarious forces [NOTE: now likely identified as Islamic militants from the al-Qaeda-allied al-Nusra group]. [http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2014/09/18/Alleged-ISIS-Photo-Controversy-Engulfs-Sen-John-McCain?utm_source=e_breitbart_com&utm_medium=email&utm_content=Breitbart+News+Roundup%2C+September+19%2C+2014&utm_campaign=20140919_m122228752_Breitbart+News+Roundup%2C+September+19%2C+2014&utm_term=More]
And, indeed, it is those same "rebels" who entered into a “non-aggression” alliance with ISIS, aimed at overthrowing President Assad and his government in 2014.
The fact that President Trump announced last week that he desired to wind down American participation in Syria and get our troops there out was a signal to the desperate rebels, facing impending and ultimate defeat, to try one more time the ruse of—to quote the standard rebel template—“a chemical attack brutally launched against civilians by the dictator Assad.” But wait, that’s the line uttered by the globalist Neoconservative spokesmen, as well as the Democrats, joined to the hip with most Republicans in demanding that the president “take action”—that he punish Assad for what happened in Douma.
Cui bono? To whose benefit? The answer is clearly that renewed involvement in Syria is the back door to heightened conflict with Russia and, also, with Iran. Both the Neocon foreign policy establishment and its dominant political wing in the GOP and the Democrats are virulently Russophobic; both zealously support the establishment of a New World Order to which Russia refuses to give its allegiance and assent. Attacking Assad and potentially shooting down Russian jets brings us that much closer to face-to-face conflict with that “new Hitler” in the Kremlin.
Additionally, renewed involvement in Syria against Assad pleases the government of Benjamin Netanyahu in Israel, whose major fear is Iran.
Curiously, ailing John McCain actually got something—or at least a bit of something—right for a change. On Sunday he declared that President Trump’s statement that we were getting out of Syria precipitated the purported chemical attack and “emboldened” Assad to commit the gassing [https://www.newsmax.com/newsfront/sen-john-mccain-president-donald-trump-bashar-assad-syria/2018/04/08/id/853265/?ns_mail_uid=61377180&ns_mail_job=1787706_04092018&s=al&dkt_nbr=010502bn7usu].
No, senator: the president’s declaration did not “embolden” Assad, who had absolutely nothing to gain from such an attack, as he was in the process of winning everything he had set out to achieve. Rather, it was your friends, the Islamic rebels, the Islamist radicals, fearing such a withdrawal, who very likely created this incident as a desperate attempt to draw us back into a conflict where we do not belong.
And now the president must resist the advice of his Neocon foreign policy advisers who have surrounded him like termites and who will push for military action and additional involvement, and that would include John Bolton.
Alas, the greatest mistake that Donald Trump has made in his short presidency, with its welcomed successes, is in some of his appointments, most especially in foreign policy. And that has been the biggest success of the DC “swamp” thus far. Given the experienced talent available and the kind of access they had, perhaps that was inevitable. But it does not alter the problematic situation and the grave risks for increased world conflict.
We can only hope that the president’s basically sound and rational instincts overcome the bloodthirsty internationalism of those who seek to essentially undermine his America First agenda.
Stay tuned as events unfold.