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Douma gas attack: Yet another false flag poisoning?

News False flag operations as important part of demonization of the enemy strategy Recommended Links Syria civil war Operation Stormy Daniels: bombing storage of chemical weapon which magically do not release their content in the air Trump after his Colin Powell moment Hillary role in Syria bloodbath and the first "sarin based" false flag attack
Khan Sheikhoun gas attack Hillary role in Syria bloodbath and the first "sarin based" false flag attack False flag poisonings Skripal poisoning Litvinenko poisoning Who Shot down Malaysian flight MH17? To whom EuroMaydan Sharp-shooters belong?
Neocon foreign policy is a disaster for the USA Neoconservatism as an attack dog of neoliberalism History of American False Flag Operations   Hillary Clinton and Obama created ISIS    
 Obama: a yet another Neocon  Anti-Russian hysteria in connection emailgate and DNC leak Machiavellism Shoot first ask questions later foreign policy Nulandgate Politically Incorrect Humor Etc

Introduction

Perhaps the British false flag poisoning may have a dampening effect on world reaction to this false flag. There are many governments with egg on their face after rushing to throw out the diplomats.  That is clearly visible in ABC and BBC coverage, but not Fox coverage. They are much less reckless this time.

This was a very convenient timing to take the focus away for the IDF shooting Palestinian kids and journalist, or the botched Skripal false flag operation.  The new memo is Assad, gas, Iran, Russia, Putin.

tangent Mon, 04/16/2018 - 16:15 Permalink

There really is not even a conspiracy theorist out there who would suggest it was a Syrian government operation any way. Only batshit crazy raving lunatics have suggested it was the Syrian government. This is clearly the stupidest thing Trump has done. It makes the USA look like a bunch of circus freak losers. Very sad and shockingly insane. This is the stupidest piece of propaganda in modern history. The USA looks very, very bad. It looks like, from any reasonable perspective, that they are actively aiding terrorists on purpose. Wow. Interesting cosmetics. Interesting optics.

Its almost as if the USA government hates itself and actually wants a nuclear war where everyone dies. I think the only thing that should be considered is whether the nutty freaks in charge are actually humans. Humans are a great disappointment, so likely, yes, human beings really can be that mentally deficient. Trump really is such a level of mental retard that he hates himself and wants to be nuked, so he bombs Syria knowing full well they have nothing to do with it. He hates his career now and wants out.

Based on previous cases, the most plausible hypotheses is that this is a false flag. This is what the answer to the question "Cue bono?" suggests in this case, so this hypothesis should be considered first. Which put this page at some distance of neoliberal MSM coverage, which is fully consistent with slightly skeptical approach adopted for this site. And in the absence of contradictory evidence  this  hypotheses will be  used as primary.  The release of chlorine by itself  is not compete impossibility, if a bomb or shell hits a container with chlorine gas stored by the rebels in a particular building or shelter (and there were at least one such storage facility already uncovered).  The problem is the attribution of this event to government forces, which clearly has no incentives to use such ineffective ammunition, which would clearly produce condemnation and possible military action or retaliation strike by International Community led by the USA. They are not suicidal.  There is a chance Assad did this -- but here's also a chance he would walk in front of a moving train, or jump out of an airplane. There's no military advantage to this. None. On the other hand, there is stupendous value to terrorists to conduct a false flag attack. MoA

Rob , Apr 8, 2018 1:10:36 PM | 69
@psychohistorian (67) Thanks very much for that posting of actual events on the ground in Douma. They are further reason to believe that the alleged chemical gas attack was not the work of the Syrian army. Clearly, the rebels were on the ropes and ready for a knockout blow. We must ask: What might the Syrian government have gained by poisoning civilians and incurring the wrath and condemnation of the "civilized" world? Absolutely nothing! From a military standpoint, it was completely unnecessary, and from a public relations standpoint, a predictable disaster. Hence, being rational actors, they would never have chosen to use chemical weapons under the circumstances. Why is this so hard for Western nations and their media to understand? The only reason that I can give is that it is in their interest not to understand. It does not comport with their agenda, which is to topple Assad and weaken Russia.

In other words the SAA launching a chemical attack on Douma makes no sense. The intention with chemical weapons is not so much to kill as to deny area of land to the opponent. Jihadists are mixed with civilian population  (and often use it a human shields). So what area we can talk about? Being a suicide cult jihadists are not afraid to die, so the demoralizing effect, if any would be small. Wearing chemical protection suits after such an attack hinders movement and this applies to both sides, so nobody benefits.

The key information comes with White Helmets which is British sponsored and MI6 infiltrated (and most probably controlled) organization.  They and their handlers are cable of pretty nasty provocations. And they have proven history of such things such as Khan Sheikhoun gas attack. So any MSM that trust those guys is of a fish wrap quality. That includes WaPo, NYT and Guardian. the difference in treatment of Israeli killing of Palestinians and Syria supposed chemical attack (which most probably is a nasty provocation of White Helmets and associated with them organizations)  are also pretty telling. Here is one comment from MoA (The MoA Week In Review And Open Thread 2018-15): 

lizard | Apr 9, 2018 8:48:53 AM | 73

I will never get used to how easily sentiment can be stirred up by propaganda (America) against some victims of geopolitical violence (Syria) and almost completely occlude others (Palestine). we are a sick and twisted people. so I make what I can in response: https://youtu.be/FS2XBqZQtQQ

We are talking about the scandalous Oscar-winning organization "White Helmets".  Several other similar organizations participated too:  the Pro-insurgent "Guta media Center" and the US-based Syrian-American Medical Society (SAMS). They issued a joint statement with the "Opposition-linked Civil Defense" (The White Helmets). There are lots of details on the attacks and damage at Douma, but only a tiny mention that Jaish al-Islam launched rockets into densely populated Damascus. Why are there no reports of death and damage in those areas? And where did SAMS come from? White Helmets role immediately links this attack to Skripal case.

For mafia style structures like jihadist groups it is very difficult to get to the originators of the attack, as ordinary members are bound by the "omerta" oath and will be killed if they talk something outside approved version. As they themselves committed numerous crimes, defection is not a viable option iether and without relocation (and change of the name) is just a suspected death sentence for the defector.

The attack supposedly happened (or was stage) on April 7, two days before John Bolton, a noted neocon warmonger  begins work as Trump’s national security adviser. So the White House reaction was the last hurrah of And on April 9 CIA Director Mike Pompeo has a confirmation hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on his nomination as secretary of state.

Also there are interesting possible connection to Skripal affair. One commenter at Moon of Alabama asked the following question: "Was the expulsion of diplomats and staff scheduled so that the strikes take them in a situation of shifting and not being able to carry their daily work?" 

Total number  of victims  is unclear. Supposedly they include women and children. But  as many sites are reporting the astonishing fact is that there are only children in the broadcast footage.. what amount to a staged play like that of Goutha years ago...

The total number of victims in the range between 40 and 70 is reported. Higher number is from BBC coverage  which refers to anecdotal evidence of various medical and monitoring groups working in Syria – and, coincidentally, funded by the United States and Britain.

The Syrian state news agency SANA said the reports originated with “terrorists”on the verge of collapse due to offensive of Syrian Army. Iran said that The Washington Post

“Such allegations and accusations by the Americans and certain Western countries signal a new conspiracy against the Syrian government and people, and a pretext for military action,”

Russian Foreign Ministry released a statement claiming that information on the reported attack is a false flag operation by terrorists.

“The goal of these false conjectures, which are without basis, are designed to shield the terrorists and the implacable radical opposition, who reject a political settlement”

Looks like large part of US government works against Trump: less than a week ago that Trump announced during a rally in Ohio that he planned to get U.S. troops out of Syria "very soon." He repeated that he wanted the U.S. military out of the country in a press conference on Tuesday.  This attack clearly helps to block the withdrawal. Trump soon changed his tune and it happened even before the attack, which is a weakness of such a hypothesis: "The White House walked back those claims a little on Wednesday, with press secretary Sarah Sanders telling reporters the president isn't going "to put an arbitrary timeline" on withdrawal. " (ABC News)

The crisis over Syria is likely to accelerate worsen already bad ties between Russia and the United States, which is the goal of the Us neocons and is contrary to the desire of Trump (at least as voice during election campaign). On Friday, the administration placed economic sanctions on some Russian tycoons. The sanctions give the United States a potent weapon to pressure international financial institutions not to lend money to the well-connected Russians.

There are a lot of  similarities of this chemical false flag with the Khan Sheikhoun gas attack. Like in previous Syria chemical attacks Even video footage presented by White Helmets can be false and/or staged. As in all similar recent events there are more questions then answers in this story. MoA - Syria - Timelines Of 'Gas Attacks' Follow A Similar Scheme (Updated)

March 30 2017: U.S. priority on Syria no longer focused on 'getting Assad out': Haley

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The United States' diplomatic policy on Syria for now is no longer focused on making the war-torn country's president, Bashar al-Assad, leave power, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations said on Thursday, in a departure from the Obama administration's initial and public stance on Assad's fate.

April 4 2017: Suspected gas attack in Syria reportedly kills dozens

World leaders expressed shock and outrage Tuesday at reports of a suspected chemical attack in northwestern Syria that killed scores of civilians, with one UK official suggesting the incident amounted to a war crime.

April 7 2017: Trump launches attack on Syria with 59 Tomahawk missiles

The U.S. military attacked a Syria-government airfield with 59 Tomahawk missiles on Thursday evening.

April 10 2017: US envoy Nikki Haley says Syria regime change is inevitable

The US ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, has told CNN that removing Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from power is a priority, cementing an extraordinary U-turn in the Trump administration's stance on the embattled leader.

The Khan Sheikhun incident had been faked. An international investigation found that half of the alleged casualties arrived in hospitals before the incident was said to have happened. Nothing followed after Haley's last announcement. The administration was apparently not willing to go beyond the one-off strike. The flip-flop was attributed to confusion or infighting within the Trump administration.

It looks like a crude false flag designed as the preparation stage for the "decapitating" strike on the Syrian government forces. The White House immediately declared readiness for military action in response this (yet unproven) "chemical attack". Against this background, there are rumors about Russia's intention this time to respond to a missile attack not with just shooing the missiles but attacking launching sites.

Neoliberal MSM as usual are filled with the emotional videos and photos of the victims including  heartbreaking shots with babies.

The attack repeats several elements of previous false flags the allegations of government forces lack any logic (why would Assad use illegal means in the midst of the military success achieved by conventional weapons?)

White House reaction

SecDef Mattis is a key player in this drama. Mattis didn't buy the fake attack a year ago which no doubt contributed to the flashy but ineffective US response. Putting the blame for this latest fake attack on Russia and Iran (a difference this time) suggests an asymmetric non-military response. Trump has sanctioned Russia three times in the past month and bragged about it, so Putin is now his go-to enemy. That Trump strategy (or lack of it) strengthens Russia domestically and internationally, especially with China, which now is also under Trump administration attack with tariffs and intellectual property issue. Some observers suggest  that this supposed false flag was a part of negotiations about captured specialist and munitions as reported by Proof Intel Drop, Trump, Bolton behind Syria chemical attacks, confirmed Veterans Today News - Military Foreign Affairs -

somebody , Apr 8, 2018 3:01:17 PM | 9
@8 the "chemical attack" was part of the negotiations. Trump is talking tough but Russia made a believable threat to hit back.

@Pat Bateman | Apr 8, 2018 1:08:29 PM | 2

Yes, there is a "strategy" to pretend Russia is a criminal worse than other countries. They even mentioned the word "weapons of mass destruction" again. It is a very real campaign in a run up to war.

This here from the opcw meeting

"It is regrettable to say that our Western partners had tried to disrupt today's session. In the beginning they offered to observe a minute of silence in memory of people killed in Khan Sheyhun, Idlib province, Syria. We proposed them to hold a moment of silence to remember all victims of chemical weapons, primarily in Vietnam, Cambodia, Iran, Iraq, and our partners somehow felt uncomfortable. [They] don't want to remember all victims of chemical weapons," said Shulgin."

It has become this transparent.

Donald Trump in his Twitter acted in the best traditions of war propaganda. But there is often a stark difference between what Trump says (or tweets ) and what he actually does. He called the Syrian leader an "animal", and his Russian colleague an criminal accomplices. As usual this was done without any investigation whether the attack really took place or was a staged provocation, and who is really responsible. Trump is definitely above such trivial things:

“President Putin, Russia and Iran are responsible for backing Animal Assad. Big price to pay,” Trump said in back-to-back tweets. “Open area immediately for medical help and verification. Another humanitarian disaster for no reason whatsoever. SICK!”

This is almost exact replica on his reaction to the previous false flag attack using chemical weapons, when a hit of a rocket on rebels' chemical storage produced a poisoness cloud  (The Washington Post):

Last week was the first anniversary of a sarin attack that killed more than 80 Syrians in the town of Khan Sheikhoun. That occurred shortlyafter the administration said that it did not believe removing Assad from power was a priority. The Syrian government was deemed responsible in a joint inquiry by the United Nations and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.

The use of sarin at Khan Sheikhoun angered Trump and led him to reassess his attitude toward Syria and Assad.

“It crossed a lot of lines for me,” he said. “When you kill innocent children, innocent babies, little babies, with a chemical gas that was so lethal,” then it “crosses many lines, beyond a red line, many, many lines.”

Three days after the attack, Trump ordered a missile strike on the Syrian airfield that had been used by planes that dropped the sarin.

This statement is especially interesting in the light of the upcoming meeting of the presidents of Russia and the United States, the preparation of which is under way, but now is increasingly unlikely to happen (The Washington Post)

Whatever was driving Trump to leave Putin alone, it’s over,” said Cliff Kupchan, chairman of the Eurasia Group, an analytical firm. “Over the course of 48 hours, Trump basically sanctioned the Russian system and fingered Putin for backing the ‘Animal Assad.’

“If the US confirms chemical weapons were used, I think we get a strike on Syria. As harsh as Friday’s sanctions were, they also set the precedent for sanctioning anyone who benefits from the Russian system.”
 

The State Department stressed that there is a history of the use of "Syrian regime" of chemical weapons  and that Assad and his supporters "should be brought to justice, and further attacks – immediately prevented."

However, if last year the main goal of the United States was Bashar al-Assad, now they put emphasis on Russia in the State Departement pres release: On the Chemical Attack in Douma

We continue to closely follow disturbing reports on April 7 regarding another alleged chemical weapons attack, this time targeting a hospital in Douma, Syria. Reports from a number of contacts and medical personnel on the ground indicate a potentially high number of casualties, including among families hiding in shelters. These reports, if confirmed, are horrifying and demand an immediate response by the international community.

The United States continues to use all efforts available to hold those who use chemical weapons, in Syria and otherwise, accountable. The regime’s history of using chemical weapons against its own people is not in dispute, and in fact nearly one year ago on April 4, 2017, Assad’s forces conducted a sarin gas attack on Khan Sheikhoun, which killed approximately 100 Syrians.

The Assad regime and its backers must be held accountable and any further attacks prevented immediately. Russia, with its unwavering support for the regime, ultimately bears responsibility for these brutal attacks, targeting of countless civilians, and the suffocation of Syria’s most vulnerable communities with chemical weapons. By shielding its ally Syria, Russia has breached its commitments to the United Nations as a framework guarantor. It has betrayed the Chemical Weapons Convention and UN Security Council Resolution 2118. Russia’s protection of the Assad regime and failure to stop the use of chemical weapons in Syria calls into question its commitment to resolving the overall crisis and to larger non-proliferation priorities.

The United States calls on Russia to end this unmitigated support immediately and work with the international community to prevent further, barbaric chemical weapons attacks.

It is noteworthy that Russia for a long time warned that the groups in Eastern Ghouta are preparing a chemical attack against the civilian population. At the press conference of the G-3 summit in Ankara, Vladimir Putin spoke about the presence of "irrefutable evidence of militants' training provocations using toxic substances."

Moreover, during the clearing of the territory of Eastern Ghouta from the militants a small factory cabale of producing chrone and chemical munitions, as well as the ammunition themselves was found and pictures of western equipment  used were published.

It is absolutely unclear what should have been the motives of Assad, for whom the situation in Syria is becoming more favorable, to use chemical weapons in Eastern Ghouta, knowing that he will be the first who will be suspected of it.

Government forces are actively advancing, and in fact are close to a complete victory in this province. A humanitarian corridor was created to remove civilians from Eastern ghouta, and the militants themselves eventually agreed to leave the region with their families.

For cornered militants who do not want to give up and leave Eastern ghouta provocation with chemical weapons – the only chance if not salvation, then at least to delay the defeat. No wonder all the sources warned about the upcoming staging, stressed that it is aimed at disrupting the offensive of government troops.

Russia representative stated that "we strongly refute this information and declare our readiness after the liberation of the city Council from the militants immediately send Russian experts of radiation, chemical and biological protection to collect data that will confirm the fabricated nature of these statements."

White house adviser Tom Bossert was in pretty militant mode on Sunday. He did not rule out military action against Syria amid information about himatake. "I would not exclude anything. These are terrible photos. We're looking into assault.», – he said, adding that this issue is being discussed by Trump and his close advisors.

April 2017 Trump already accused Damascus of using chemical weapons in Khan Sheikhoun based in very flimsy evidence and  no investigation by UN,  and ordered a missile strike on the base of the Syrian air force Shayrat, with which the attack was allegedly carried out. Compelling evidence of use by Damascus of chemical weapons in Khan Sheyhun the West was never presented.

As the US goal of the "regime change"  becoming unattainable, Washington is increasingly voiced the idea to launch a military action against Syria. So, in early March, the US Ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, threatened, if not stop the offensive in Eastern Ghouta, to strike at Damascus. And the current alleged "chemical attack" is a very convenient excuse to do so.

Russia reaction

This time Russia was better prepared to thei false flag operation. They also has  had intelligence  that such attack is planned. Moscow directly accused the West of using provocation with chemical weapons to prepare military actions against Damascus.  Later Russians inspected the area and found no signs that attack took place. Their conclusion is that all was staged ( Syria conflict: Russia says no evidence of Douma chemical attack )

Apr 09, 2018 | www.bbc.com

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said no evidence has been found of a chemical weapons attack in Syria's formerly rebel-held town of Douma.

He said Russian specialists and aid workers had visited the area. Rebel fighters have started leaving the town under a surrender deal.

Medical sources say dozens were killed in Saturday's alleged attack but numbers are impossible to verify.

The US and France threatened a "joint, strong response" to the alleged attack.

The United Nations Security Council is to discuss the allegations later on Monday.

The Russian denial came hours after a deadly attack on a Syrian military airport , which Moscow and the Syrian government blamed on Israel.

Missiles hit the Tiyas airbase, known as T4, near the city of Homs. Observers say 14 people were killed.

Israel, which has previously hit Syrian targets, has not commented. Syria initially blamed Washington for the strike, but the US, UK and France have all denied involvement.

It is unclear if the strike has anything to do with the suspected chemical attack.

Earlier, Russia’s military directly denied that the Syrian army launched this chemical attack and accused Western countries of staging false flag operation to justify strike on Syrian government forces (ABC News):

"We decisively deny that information,” the head of Russia’s Reconciliation Center in Syria, Major Gen. Yuri Yevtushenko, told Interfax, referring to allegations that the chemical attack was caused by a chlorine bomb dropped by pro-Assad forces.

“We express our readiness, after the liberation of Douma from militants, to immediately send Russian specialists in radiological, chemical and biological protection for the collection of data, that will confirm the fabricated character of these statements,” Yevtushenko said.

Yevtushenko then accused “a range of Western countries” of using the allegations of the attack to try to hinder the Russian-Syrian operation to pull out militants from Douma.

“For that, that theme beloved by the West, the use of chemical weapons by the armed forces of Syrian Arab Republic, is being used,” Yevtushenko told Interfax. He also said the allegations were being made by groups like the White Helmets, which he accused of “being widely known for their fake news.”

Yevtushenko said that after Douma has been retaken by the government, Russia is ready to immediately send its own chemical weapons experts in to “collect data that will confirm the fabricated character” of the allegations.

As ABC News reported on April 8, 2018:

Russia is warning the US against any "military intervention" in Syria over the government's alleged chemical attack against civilians this weekend, saying any such response would be "unacceptable" and lead to the "most serious consequences".

The foreign ministry in Moscow also says in a statement on its website that allegations of the chemical attack are "fabricated," suggesting the claims were invented by rebel forces and the Syrian Civil Defense known as the White Helmets.

"It is necessary to warn again that military intervention under invented and fabricated pretexts in Syria, where at the request of the lawful government there are Russian military personnel, is absolutely unacceptable and can lead to the most serious consequences," the statement reads. "The aim of these false speculations, that have no basis, is to shield the terrorists and the irreconcilable radical opposition, who reject a political solution, at the same time while trying to justify possible armed strikes from outside."

Russia this time is unlikely to observe the bombing from the outside. The chief of the General staff Valery Gerasimov in response to the word Hayley said: if there is a threat of life of the Russian military, the armed forces "will take retaliatory measures as a missile, and the launching sites".

According to reports, the Russian air defenses Syria recently were enhances and the number of observation flights increased.

 

Let remind us the general context Khan Sheikhoun gas attack

Only few undisputed facts are know about Khan Sheikhoun attack

  1. It is unknown who is responsible for attack. The major are three
    1. The USA official -- Assad did it. 
    2. Russian Hypothesis  (hit of jihadist chemical lab or storage by Syrian military jets released toxic fumes),
    3. False flag version
      •  Some rogue elements within the US government and/or Israel and KSA. Sen. John McCain and former CIA Director John Brennan were mentioned as responsible for planning the false flag (Ex CIA Agent Mossad And Saudis Are Behind Syrian False Flag - Your News Wire)
      • The speed and determination  to accuse Assad without any serious investigation suggest "Iraq WDM scenario". Which representative of Bolivia in the UN explicitly mentioned. (Bolivia UN Envoy on Syria Attack 'History Teaches Us' US Lies to Justify Wars News teleSUR English)

        Lambasting the United States' aggression against Syria, Bolivian Ambassador to the United Nations Sacha Llorenti compared the basis for the unilateral move to former US Secretary of State Colin Powell's infamous 2003 presentation to the body, when fraudulent evidence of an alleged Iraqi weapons program was presented to justify the US war on Iraq

        Holding up an enlarged photo of Colin Powell's “weapons of mass destruction” speech, Llorenti made an impassioned plea to hold the US to account for Thursday's unprovoked attack on Syria, noting the US history of imperialist interventions in other nations, including Latin America.

        "Now the United States believe that they are investigators, they are attorneys, judges and they are the executioners. That's not what international law is about."

        The Andean nation currently holds a non-permanent seat on the U.N. Security Council.

      "I believe it's vital for us to remember what history teaches us and on this occasion (in 2003), the United States did affirm, they affirmed that they had all the proof necessary to show that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction but they were never found … never were they found," the Bolivian envoy told the emergency Security Council meeting on Friday.

    So far the most plausible is Russian hypothesis.
     

  2. This is the second major sarin attack in Syria (it it was sarin, which is still unclear; some witnesses reported a strong smell) . The previous one was a false flag operation in which over thousand people including women and children died. previous (false flag) sarin attack was staged Syria in 2013 with the explicit goal to provoke Western military response like in Lybia. This was so called "Ghouta chemical attack"; sarin was used in an attack in the Ghouta region of the Rif Dimashq Governorate of Syria during the Syrian civil war.[51] Varying[52] sources gave a death toll of 322[53] to 1,729.[54] It were a part of rebels strategy to weaken and isolate internationally Assad government, which coincides with the desires of the USA and its allies such as Turkey and KSA. 
  3. On Tuesday April 4th 2017, videos and images emerged from sources belonging to Al Nustra within Syria showing what is claimed to be a chemical weapon attack that targeted Al Sheikhun south of Idlib. There were never independent investigators on the ground. All information is from Al Nusra sources. The attack occurred in the city Khan Sheikhoun in Idlib province, an area on the Turkish border mostly controlled by al-Qaeda affiliated rebels.
  4. Khan Sheikhoun was bombed by Assad air force  and during or after bombing chemical subscrances were releases.  Coordinates of the target were known to USA as they were communicated as a part of Memorandum about avoiding incidents between the USA and Russia. The USA has a drone in the vicinity which might have the footage of the attack.
  5. Mechanism of delivery is unclear, but is was not sophisticated bomblet-based weapon of Russian origin.. No reliable photos of the weapon exist.
  6. Around than 80 people were killed by suspected chemical weapons in Khan Sheikhoun. A large proportion victims them were children (local inhabitants or hostages is not known) died, possibly of gas poisoning
  7. British Doctor from Khan Sheikhoun who reported about the attack previously held on terror charges in Britain, but managed to escape to Syria.
  8. Turkey  performed autopsies of several victims and claims that they died form  poisoning, althouth they do not say what exactly it was.

The "known unknown" area is much larger.  Even origin and chemical composition of toxic cloud is disputed  (was it "sarin"; was it air attack of munitions depot explosion? what is staged event (aka false flag operation) or a blunder by Assad forces which accidentally hit chemical depot in a school or close to a school.  Here is attempt to collect the most interesting questions about this event that I have found in various forums (collected from foreign sources, mostly from British and German): 

  1. Is not unilateral military intervention in a sovereign country that does not threaten the USA constituting an act of aggression, a war crime by the UN statute? Or, as an exceptional nation, the USA is above the UN...

  2. How can journalists and Western diplomats be so lacking in the desire or ability to question what they are told? http://hitchensblog.mailonsunday.co.uk/2017/04/its-wmd-all-over-again-why-dont-you-see-it-.html, The Kremlin issued a statement saying that Russian President Vladimir Putin found it "unacceptable to make groundless accusations against anyone without conducting a detailed and unbiased investigation."

  3. Cue bono?  Effectively the USA acted as Al Nustra (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Al-Nusra_Front) air force. Which promptly initiated an attack on government forces in Palmira.  Does this means that the USA foreign policy in Syria is now aligned with Gulf monarchies policy and Israeli policies of dismembering this country and establishing a permanent Al Nusra Caliphate on the part of the territory as well as  possibly Kurdish enclave ?  The Syrian regime may not have had a compelling motive, believes Günther Meyer, the director of the Research Center for the Arab World at the Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz. "Only armed opposition groups could profit from an attack with chemical weapons," he told DW. "With their backs against the wall, they have next to no chance of opposing the regime militarily. As President [Donald] Trump's recent statements show, such actions make it possible for anti-Assad groups to receive further support."http://www.dw.com/en/is-assad-to-blame-for-the-chemical-weapons-attack-in-syria/a-38330217 Is not Israel the major beneficiary of this bombing? Syrians shot down an Israeli jet a week before using this airbase. Now this airbase is destroyed.

  4. On April 3, the USA government announced that the US is no longer insisting that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has to step aside. The attack happened on April 4th, a day after.  On April 6 after the attack, but before any investigation, the USA goverment  changed its mind. Did Trump reneg on his promises to fight ISIS and establishing détente with Russia after unprecedented attack by neocons in Washington and folded?   Removal of Bannon might be connected. Does this mean that Trump metamorphosed into Hillary Clinton in around 100 days in office? Or does that mean that the president does not matter and deep state rules the country?

  5. Previous sarin attack was a false flag: The attack took place while UN weapons inspectors were in the country, on Assad's invitation, said Meyer. Assad had asked them to investigate a chemical weapons attack from March 2013 outside Aleppo, which killed Syrian soldiers. Former weapons inspector Richard Lloyd and MIT professor Theodore Postol cast further doubt on Assad's role in the Ghouta attack. They reported in 2014 that the chemical weapons could have only been fired from rebel-held territory, with a range of up to 2.5 kilometers (1.6 miles).

  6. The Nusra Front's weapons include chemical weapons and they inflicted casualties on Syrian army.  This Al Qaeda affiliate is today the most significant rebel group in the northern Syrian province of Idlib. Along with other jihadi groups, it has turned itself into the "de facto ruler of Idlib." Syrian government reiterated the claim, echoed by Moscow, that the tragedy occurred because the rebels had been stockpiling sarin gas, and the Syrian army had no way of knowing it was there.

  7. What will be consequences (other then deserved Nobel Peace Price for Trump) for the USA if the investigation implicated the rebels? BTW none of "volunteers" treating victims died from poisoning, despite working without HASMAT suits, which suggest that at least "sarin" version is bogus. 

  8. What was the function of the buildings hit by air strike (hitting a depot of chemical weapons is the Russian version of events)?  it is clear they they were in or close to residential area were those private residences or not is unclear. What was exact time of Assad forces attack? Rebels are known to store munitions in schools and mosques to protect them from air strikes. Why so many children were affected if only two houses were hit. Outside school,  in Syria  children are usually accompanied by women. There were  less victims among adults.

  9. Are we one step closer to the hot conventional war with Russia instead of promised by Trump to voters "détente"? Will Russia retaliates or not ?  It did not retaliated military when Turkish air forces shot down its bomber which was on mission without fighters escort, so let’s hope it will not this time too.  Russia did suspend 2015 memorandum of understanding on the air operations ( https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/russia-condemns-us-missile-strike-on-syria/2017/04/07/c81ea12a-1b4e-11e7-8003-f55b4c1cfae2_story.html )

    Under the pact, the two countries have traded information about flights by a US-led coalition targeting the Islamic State and Russian planes operating in Syria in support of the Assad government. Moscow was taking its action, the Defense Ministry said, because it sees the US strike “as a grave violation of the memorandum.”

    Which created for them a theoretical possibility to shoot down planes if they threaten Russian forces.


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[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 allowed in the hospital without hazmat suits when the hospital staff were wearing them?

We were originally told that Bailey was contaminated whilst wearing police issue gloves, yet the BBC article said he was wearing a hazmat suit.
Nerve toxins kill thousands, yet only three people were initially contaminated and recovered.

Refraktor
It's beyond reasonable doubt that there was no Novichok: assuming that substance even exists. It could be that Sergei and Yulia were stooges loyal to MI5. It could be they were whacked with bz or fentanyl (by MI5) in the restaurant. That's all it would take. Of course army heads of nursing and CID officers would be circulating ready get a handle on developments. Perhaps it later became necessary to kill someone after the complete non-lethality of Novichok was revealed. Perhaps this death was really caused by heroin overdose or else something quite natural. Perhaps not. I concur that the most likely motive for this false flag was an attempt to escalate in Syria. Given the total barking insanity of the Skripal Saga it might be that NATO genuinely contemplated war with Russia at this time. When they lobbed those cruise missiles I thought their dreams were about to come true. Maniacs.
Stonky

Speaking of which, where on Earth IS Sergei Skripal?

Sergei was a double agent who could have had his finger in all sorts of dubious pies. There might easily be logical (if not legitimate) reasons for keeping him under wraps. Surely the more pertinent question is: Where is Yulia?

Because even if you swallow every fragment of the official UK nonsense, you're still left with this oddity:

Yulia Skripal is a young woman who was the completely innocent victim of a dastardly assassination plot masterminded by the evil Vlad. Having survived this attempt on her life, she has responded by deciding that she never again wants to see or speak to anyone at all. Ever.

Nick
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.
Portonchok
Nick,

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.

Stonky

But it does seem that 2 GRU officers were wandering around Salisbury. .. Why?

Nick, even accepting that the two guys were Russian intelligence operatives, there are a million explanations for their presence in Salisbury that day that make more sense than the official UK explanation: They came to assassinate Sergei Skripal by smearing the world's deadliest nerve agent on his door handle in the middle of a Sunday afternoon, while wearing no protective clothing

Jen
There is no proof that the two Russian men Ruslan Boshirov and Alexander Petrov were GRU officers. The so-called "proof" for that line of thinking comes from Bellingcat, a known propaganda outfit, who obtained the "proof" in highly suspect ways that suggest it was given cherry-picked information made to fit the narrative.

It is far more likely that out of the many tourists to Salisbury – hundreds perhaps, and many of them from Russia as well – these two men were picked out at random by UK government authorities as targets of suspicion because they happened to be travelling together and must have fit a preconceived template in which secret Russian agents (like Dmitri Kovtun and Andrei Lugovoi before them, when those two fellows were supposed to have poisoned Alexander Litvinenko back in 2006) are believed to travel in pairs.

John2o2o
Two Russians were wandering round Salisbury. That is all we know. Has it never occurred to you that the UK government and/or the people who poisoned the Skripals might be using them as convenient scapegoats? It may even be that they were deliberately lured to Salisbury to be set up in this way and had nothing to do with the poisoning.
OffG
Is there any solid evidence they were GRU? Has that ever been firmed up beyond Bellingcat's 'data dump' of largely unproven documents?
Seamus Padraig
The going theory is that the Russian agents were led into a trap. The GRU may have been made to believe somehow that Skripal intended to re-defect, and that's why they really went to Salisbury–not to assassinate him, but to help him arrange his escape. That's when the MI6 moved in for the kill, hoping to pin the crime on Russia.

To be sure, it's hard to get to the bottom of this cloak-and-dagger stuff when all we have access to is open-source information. But one thing is pretty clear to me: the idea that Russia would have allowed Skripal to defect, then waited all those years and taken crazy risks to kill him after having had him in their direct custody in a Russian prison for over 6 years, where they could have easily killed him at any time, is ridiculous.

John2o2o
They are not proven to be Russian agents.
Reg
John2o2o
No, not proven but is it possible they were low level couriers in a meeting set up by Yulia where information was to be swapped as the price as re-admittance to Russia for Sergei, particularly given Sergei's mothers advancing age.
It would explain the UK's panicked reaction as this was a meeting that must be stopped at all costs. How much would Sergei know of UK security service operations if he was still active? It would also explained why Yulia as also targeted and why there turned off their phones as they sought to shake off their UK handlers. A meeting is more credible in broad daylight than an assassination. An assassination with an escape route involving a train from Salisbury on Sunday is not credible.
It could even be that the UK security services carried out the attack in the hope of blaming Russia if the could convince them it was carried out by Russia. Having kept the OPCW away they could then interfere with the evidence at will with Novachock. They could be filmed propped up in bed blaming Russia (like Litvinenko), but they didn't play ball so have been kept incommunicado ever since apart from a a carefully scripted interview. The attacks on the other two months later could be to add credibility to a narrative that was loosing all credibility even among the general public.
JudyJ

"Having kept the OPCW away "

I always considered it was highly suspicious that the UK was most reluctant to involve the OPCW right from the outset even though that would be the normal internationally accepted practice in the circumstances; and when Russia was imploring them to do so.

Significantly, the UK only brought them into the picture (reluctantly) when they were given legal advice that Russia were entitled to invite the OPCW to investigate, and whoever issued the invitation first would have overall control of the final report (i.e. they could liaise with the OPCW in the drafting, they could redact it, and decide who was to receive copies of the full report as opposed to the summary report).

My suspicion now, knowing what we know about the OPCW Douma scandal, is that the UK were totally in cahoots with the US over the Salisbury events and when the prospect of having no option but to call in the OPCW emerged the US simply said "Don't worry about a thing. Just leave it with us. We'll sort things out".

Kathy
The British seem to me to act, hide and manipulate from behind the USA.
I think that Trump was really not meant to happen. Killery was supposed to take over the reins and continue the waging of wars in the Middle East. Syria being the immediate agenda.
The two above events both link up in an attempt to force Trump into complying. One of the connections is the attempt to try to smear Trump with the dodgy dossier. The chemical false flag was intended to provide the warmongers with enough pressure to force Trump to act and involve America against his better judgement in an all out war in Syria. luckily this became a short term token one off. Much to British annoyance.
It is the connection with the intelligence services that is key. All of these events seem to be designed to push Trump into compliance and conformity. It is the knowledge of /and his probable involvement with Christopher Steele, that suggest poor Sergey knew to much of both events, and so had to be silenced. The Skripal affair was, I think attempting a cherry on the cake demonizing of Russia with the Skripal narrative. A twist of the knife while Trump was under investigation over his supposed puppet status by/ collusion with Russia.
It seems that the latest persecution of Assange is also mostly being pushed by Britain. Assange certainly did play a big part in the narrative not playing out as planned.
crank
Remarkable that despite all that is known, an article (well, two really) like this does not meniton Israel once.
The extract from Catte's piece last year starts with the sentence, 'The neocon faction in the US is usually (and reasonably) regarded as the motivator behind much of the western aggression in the Middle East.'
The 'neocon faction' means what exactly ? Why not just say it ? It means Israel and the international power bloc aligned with Israel.
Perhaps Douma and Salisbury make more sense if they are put into a context of Israel writing and running US (and by extension, UK) foreign policies. And what of Russia's strange and often unmentioned relationship with Israel?
If anyone is serious about unwrapping the onion of lies and misdirection that passes for 'current events', then its time to consider Israel and its networks of supporters as the central focal point.
9/11 only makes sense, I would say, with this in mind. Ditto the Kennedy killings. If you think these events have significance in our present,and you genuinely stand against racist supremicism and crazed plans for world domination, then speak out about Israel before such speech is criminalised everywhere.
Dissidents_unit
Well said Crank. I have always believed Mossad had a hand in the alleged assassination attempt of the Skripals as Israel does have chemical weapons and has refused affiliation with the OPCW in order, I presume, to avoid inspections and having to decommission the chemical weapons they have. If anybody is to be accused of meddling in other nation's elections, politics etc Israel is right up there as the prime suspects – they obviously control Trump, they were caught on Video (at least a non diplomatic representative from the Israeli Embassy in the UK who branded himself as managing 'special projects') offering Joan Ryan – a Labour MP – £1m to run a smear campaign against Corbyn – which she gladly accepted. They have run continuous, spurious, ridiculous anti-Semitism claims against Corbyn and Labour which has only served to turn the public more against them and they are massacring and murdering Palestinians with impunity – all supported by the UK and USA.

I think Mossad were the Government (UK's) agents with respect to the Skripal affair. I am of the firm belief that the Skripals are both dead – after all, the UK Government cannot afford to release them so to speak. I say this because Sergei used to speak to his elderly mother in Russia if not every day, at least several times a week and he has not been in touch with her neither has Yulia. Yulia had a flat, a fiancé, a job and a wedding to arrange back in Russia – I don't believe she just walked away from all that.

Portonchok
And what of Russia's strange and often unmentioned relationship with Israel?
It's not strange at all. By far the largest group of immigrants into Israel are Russians.
John2o2o
Jews under the bed? I don't agree with your analysis. Israel has nothing to do with the Skripal poisoning. I understand your mistrust of Israel, but it is not to blame for all the ills of the world.
crank
How do you know that 'Israel had nothing to do with the Skripal poisoning' ?
You don't.
I know of no connection directly linking the events to agents of the Israeli state, but what does that mean? We don't really know any more than that the UK government story is a transparent fabrication.

If you conclude that Israel effectively runs US foreign policy then the Syrian situation has to be considered in that context. (Likewise Iran).
It's not called the Anglo-zionist empire for nothing.

Catte's article was basically a theorised link between Douma and Salisbury. Douma is in Syria, which is under attack from Israel, according to a plan drawn up in Israel decades ago, with proxy army from Neocon Washington (i.e. Israel)

mark
That's a good point. But I am struck by the leading role currently played by the UK in the recent litany of false flags and smear campaigns. The UK was a prime mover in setting up the "White Helmets" and the various Syrian gas hoaxes. Litvinenko. Skripal. The Steele Dirty Dossier. The Corbyn anti Semitism hoax. Admittedly probably with a large Zionist element.
crank
The Henry Jackson Society would be one obvious hub of neocon organisation within the UK political establishment. There surely are others that we are as yet unaware of (NB the recent Facebook revelations of political interference around the globe.)
In much the same way that the 'special relationship' between the US and Britain basically translates into Britain acting as America's de facto diplomatic poodle, HJS has long seen itself as an outpost to disseminate US neoconservative ideology in the British political establishment, media and civil society.

https://medium.com/insurge-intelligence/the-american-far-right-s-trojan-horse-in-westminster-6799f442d6ce

http://spinwatch.org/images/Reports/HJS_spinwatch%20report_web_2015.pdf

JudyJ
O/T I know, but on the subject of the esteemed (!) Henry Jackson Society, I had to laugh the other day when I read about the pending departure of Alexander Yakovenko from the Russian Embassy in London.

A Dr Andrew Foxall, who (according to the Daily Mail) is the 'expert' Head of Russian Studies at the HJC, stated that it was clearly a suspicious move because ambassadorial positions are normally held for 5 or 3 years, not for the 8 years that Yakovenko had been there. He even spoon-fed us with the information that "8 is not divisible by 5 or 3" and therefore this has to be a forced move. I suggest that Dr Foxall needs to stop and think just a touch longer if he is ever asked to comment in public in future and not seriously damage whatever reputation he might claim to have. I ask you.

JudyJ
Sorry, should have made better use of my 'edit' time! HJC should of course read HJS. My proof-reading abilities are as questionable as Dr Andrew Foxall's maths!
crank
If anyone has not reviewed Christopher Bollyn's case against Israel for 9/11, I would suggest that now is the time.
Only a widespread revelation of the role of Israel in 9/11 can stop their war on Iran from proceding.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/5H9RY1N2ljA

crank
https://www.mintpressnews.com/newly-released-fbi-docs-shed-light-on-apparent-mossad-foreknowledge-of-9-11-attacks/258581/
UreKismet
There are only two viable theories about Skirpal IMO. The first is that his daughter had persuaded the old man to come home and the englanders learned this at short notice.

Sergeant Nick Bailey the thug on call that day, really screwed up the attempt to off Skirpal even poisoning himself in order to 'get' Skirpal before he met with the Russian officers who had been sent to negotiate his return home.

Proximity to English chemical weapons determined the method.

The second is also dependent on the proximity of English chemical weapons manufacturing base at Porton Downs. That is the English were responsible for training Syrian headchoppers in chemical warfare and they taught their terrorists about Novichok to false flag in Syria in a way that would make Russia appear culpable.

One of the trainee terrorists went to lunch and overheard the Skripals talking Russian & became so upset the invasion and war had been lost, he decided to poison em.

The latter doesn't fit the known facts as well as the former, but it is more credible than anything the Englander spies have offered.

Dissidents_unit
URKismet – just a comment – it turns out that the first responder apart from Nick Bailey was, in fact, the Head of Nursing of the British Army! No coincidence there I think. Either she or Nick Bailey or both are surely suspects in the administration of the toxic substance?
Wilmers31
Many people forget that Skripal took (according to wikipedia) approximately 300 other agents down with him when he was busted in Moscow.

That makes about 600 individuals (only 1 relative for each) who must be his enemies. Someone was after revenge? Whether that one was in Britain in exile or in Russia we don't know. People ignore such a large group of potential enemies.

Seamus Padraig
So why did the Russians allow the Skripals to emigrate to the UK in the first place? They had Sergei in prison for 6 years; they could have had him bumped off at any time while he was their prisoner. But for some odd reason they chose not to. Strange
Wilmers31
It was a prisoner exchange before Skripal had completed his sentence. The UK must have had an asset which Moscow really wanted, persons or . don't know. It is now time that these prisoner/spy exchanges no longer happen in secret. Why they let him out earlier is not understandable from what we know at the moment.
Wilmers31
The one thumb down is surprising. If that is for the idea to cease prisoner/spy exchanges that is somewhat silly as these exchanges do not make for happiness, as we have seen. If exchanges are so good, why not exchange Kevin Mallory with the Chinese? People need to cop the complete punishment for their crimes, you do not exchange murderers or fraudsters, either.

If the criticism is about the hundreds of people who are tempted for revenge after their cover was blown through Skripal then this is bizarre. What purpose does it serve to sweep it under the carpet that Skripal was only one person in a system? Maybe wikipedia's figure of 300 was wrong – let's have the correct figure then.

We can read in memoirs like Brian Crozier's "Free Agent" and "Gold Warriors" (Seagraves) what operations there were in Chile, Africa, Philippines etc but the many people who were involved are never mentioned. The individuals like Skripal or Crozier are the visible tips of the icebergs and it is legitimate to ask who else was involved in the operations, covert or open, legal or illegal, and who funded.

davemass
Profumo was jailed for lying to Parliament.
Surely May, and all accomplices should suffer the samne fate??
wardropper
I expect the US secret service just asked our secret service to take the initiative for once, since the US were beginning to look like the bad guys
Paul Harvey
I have privately speculated that the raison d'etre of the Skirpal farce was simply to generate the belief system and memetic narrative that Russia is currently producing chemical weapons/ nerve agents and is willing to openly use them on their perceived 'enemies' abroad (and of course that the origin of these chemical weapons, ie Novichok can 'proved' to be exclusively of Russian providence.

Why is the above important? Because if there is ever a chemical weapons attack in Syria on civilians and hundreds die and the nerve agent is 'proved' by the OPCW to be Novichok then of course Russia would get the blame for supplying the 'Assad regime' with this chemical agent. (Sarin, anthrax etc cannot be exclusively traced back to Russia, only Novichok and it alone can be, if we believe the prior Skirpal narrative).

As a side note – the story that Trump was shown images of dead English ducks and hospitalised English children in relation to the Skirpal incident makes me wonder if this was an attempt by British psychological warfare operatives to pre-program Trump and his team, so when videos eventually emerge of dead animals and hospitalised Syrian children, the link is already fixed in their mind as to what a Novichok 'attack' looks like).

One has to admit the story that surfaced last month of dead ducks/hospitalised kids images shown to Trump in relation to the Skirpal narrative was very strange to say the least.

Just as the Skirpal case 'fixed' the Novichok narrative in the MSM as exclusively of Russian providence, one can also speculate that the Douma 'Barrel Bomb' meme (and the fake OPCW Report) was another key part of the narrative – if a speculative Novichok attack occurs and footage emerges of similar containers as used in the the fake Douma chlorine attack, the OPCW can already point to the providence of the delivery system as being exclusively of Syrian military origin and the Douma events as simply a precursor to a current 'Novichok' attack (just as the Skirpal events would be used as a precursor to Russian culpability and perhaps even the suggestion of active Russian involvement in a mass chemical attack on Syrian women and children using the agent Novichok.)

Maybe this is what the Russians mean by UK involvement in Douma – maybe they worked out that the Skirpal events were a precursor to a wider false flag event to be staged down the line by elements of British military and state intelligence networks in conjunction with elements within NATO and U.S. intelligence structures.

I know this is total speculation and I provide it as food for thought and grounds for further research in reference to this article.

Panopticon
All you need to know about Skripalgate : )

https://syrianobservatoryforhumanwrongs.wordpress.com/2018/07/09/an-idiots-guide-to-the-skripal-affair/

CoryP
This was such a treat. Thanks for sharing!
wardropper
That is a tremendous piece of work. It should go down in history, but people are already forgetting Skripal's name. A truly brilliant summary.
mark
Chemical weapons have been used against the Syrian military, inflicting casualties. They have also been used routinely by the British taxpayer funded head choppers and throat slitters to terrorise civilians indiscriminately for years. As for "scant evidence of jihadists weaponizing chemicals", they have been arrested in Turkey by the Turkish police in possession of canisters of sarin nerve gas. Just one of many documented instances. But maybe this just comes from a "conspiracist mindset." Maybe it's totally irrelevant to the issue when terrorists are arrested in Turkey in possession of nerve gas.
mark
The UK taxpayer funded head choppers and throat slitters routinely seize civilians as hostages, then murder them and blame it on Assad. They have massacred entire villages then called in their chums in the BBC to film the evidence of "Assad's latest atrocity." Like they film the devastation in Gaza and try to pass it off as rocket damage in Israel. All in a day's lying for the folks at the Botty Bangers Club.
John
Isn't it odd that you used opcw findings when it matched what you want but it doesn't fit now so you're having a hissy fit! I hope horrid things happen to you fake socialist
lundiel

isn't it odd that sarin gas or even chlorine has only been used to kill their own women and children rather than the Baathist military?

No. Western media aren't going to get in a frenzy if some of Assad's soldiers are killed.

crank
isn't it odd that sarin gas or even chlorine has only been used to kill their own women and children rather than the Baathist military?

– In a word, no. Anyone with even the slightest comprehension of how psychological warfare works would understand this.

Louis Proyec – 'reader'

Maybe read more widely, or start thinking more deeply, or stop bullshitting so lamely.

Loverat
I came across a similar post Louis made on another topic a while ago.

The political language and terms used in his posts always suggest his political position is his starting point then arranging selective facts to support it. First, the classic line of attack is accusing others of 'conspiracy theorists' – a tactic used by mainstream journalists and Bellingcat and el against the academics and experts of the Syria Working Group. As said below, that does not cut it – especially now the 'conspiracy theorists' have for the umpteenth time been vindicated.

Louis, comes out with stuff like 'Baathist troops' (he uses the word 'Baathist' three times in his post as if it was somehow relevant) whereas someone normal, of genuine intelligence and independent, would use the description 'Syrian Army'. Why would you say 'Baathist troops' or use other pointless labels unless you are trying to distract from the real issues while attempting to give the impression of having some knowledge. His political posturing offers nothing by way of getting to the truth and he appears to be another self-serving armchair commentator.

mark
Maybe we could get him a job with Bellingcat.
OffG
You're embarrassing yourself, Louis. Throwing out stale ad homs like 'conspiracist' isn't enough any more. You need to up your game, deal with the developing reality or retire.
Jen
We need the other anti-Assad troll back but the danger is I might get sick of hitting him again with Yassin al-Haj's article for the New York Times where the Syrian activist admits to having stayed with the White Helmets in Ghouta in mid-2013 before fleeing to Raqqa and leaving his wife Samira Khalil behind.
Ken
Take it easy on poor old Louis; what can one expect from a fellow who probably believes that 9/11 was not a false flag either? And that one is a complete no-brainer to see.
Rhisiart Gwilym
Come on! Let's encourage the poor old fart to go on posting here. He's always good for an incredulous laugh. And he's a warning too to anyone trying to make sense of Western criminal realpolitik, an object lesson in what happens to a supposed 'radical thinker' – hah! – who drinks too deeply of the Western propaganda kool-aid, and holds the stuff down, too, until it comes time to regurgitate it as if it were 'original thinking', the poor sucker. Don't off him. He's useful as light amusement.

PS: in case you think I'm being a bit ad-hominy, I'm a poor broken down old fart myself. But I still have my wits about me, and I can still smell the stench of the West's Permanent Bullshit Blizzard when I meet it. Catch up soon Louis! Till then – thanks for all the laffs! :O)

JudyJ
" isn't it odd that sarin gas or even chlorine has only been used to kill their own women and children rather than the Baathist military?"

No, not at all odd.

1. To be clear, when you say "their own" I presume you mean the Syrian women and children who the (mainly non-Syrian) terrorists hold as captives to ensure their men folk co-operate with them, or to be used in propaganda campaigns including 'false flag' scenarios.

2. In what form would you suggest the Jihadi murderers might be tempted to use chlorine in a way capable of killing opposition soldiers? Chlorine is essentially an unpleasant irritant if misused. To kill, it would have to be administered in an enclosed space where there was no means of escape for the victims.

3. We are constantly being fed the lie that the terrorists don't have sarin so it would be rather foolish of them to deploy it against opposition soldiers. Even they've worked that one out.

4. The terrorists are mercenaries paid by western agencies whose primary function is to carry out acts to discredit the Assad Government, thereby providing an ultimate excuse for military action to overthrow the Assad Government. The most obvious way to do this is to murder, as you so sensitively express it, "a bunch of Syrians" in a way that the West finds appropriate to point the finger at the Assad Government and its Russian allies.

This all makes a lot more sense than the idea that the Syrian Government assisted by the Russians would choose to murder innocent Syrian civilians, not least by using outlawed chemical weapons, and incur the wrath of western powers at the point when they were succeeding in defeating the terrorists with relative ease.

WeatherEye
Fantastic piece. The leaked report confirms what many analysts on the left have been saying, including myself. https://flashpointssite.wordpress.com/2019/05/17/chemical-attack-on-dhouma-foam-lies-and-videotape-weathereye/

[Jun 26, 2019] How the OPCW's investigation of the Douma incident was nobbled - Working Group on Syria by Paul McKeigue, David Miller, Jake Mason, Piers Robinson

Notable quotes:
"... The Douma investigation included external consultations with engineering experts and toxicologists. The Final Report does not present the results of these consultations in their original form. The exclusion of the FFM's own Engineering Assessment raises suspicion that other assessments may have been omitted or distorted. ..."
"... As we have previously noted, if the Douma attack was staged the only plausible explanation for the deaths of the victims is that they were murdered as captives by the opposition group in control of Douma at the time. ..."
Jun 25, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Members of Working Group on Syria, Propaganda and Media 25 June 2019

1 Summary
2 Introduction
3 The Fact-Finding Mission in Syria
4 The boss: Sébastien Braha
5 The Team Leader: Sami Barrek
6 The freelance: Len Phillips
7 The interim and final reports
8 Distortion of evidence in earlier reports where Phillips was FFM Team Leader
8.1 Idlib 2015: refrigerant canisters
8.2 Khan Shaykhun 2017: recorded times of hospital admissions
8.3 Ltamenah 2017: intact sarin persisting after months in the open
9 UK-led information operations associated with alleged chemical attacks
9.1 Ministry of Defence: Targeting and Information Operations
9.2 ARK, Basma, Mayday Rescue and the White Helmets
9.3 SecureBio and the CBRN Task Force
9.4 UK communicators
10 A next step: replication of the engineering studies
11 Role of external engineering experts and toxicologists
12 Acknowledgements

1 Summary

2 Introduction

In response to our release of the suppressed Engineering Assessment, OPCW management produced three explanations in the space of ten days:

  1. The Engineering Assessment "is not part of any of the material produced by the FFM" and Ian Henderson "has never been a member of the FFM". ( Deepti Choubey , 11 May)
  2. Henderson was "on the sidelines of the FFM", but his report was "a dissenting assessment" and "his findings were considered but were a minority opinion as final report was written" (off-the-record briefings to Scott Lucas and Brian Whitaker , 16 May). The Director-General, answering a question on 6 June, confirmed that the Engineering Assessment "was considered and it was analysed, it was part of the investigation", thus contradicting Choubey's email of 11 May).
  3. Henderson was in Douma "to provide temporary support to the FFM" but the Engineering Assessment was excluded because it "came too close to attributing responsibility, and thus fell outside the scope of the FFM's mandate." (Whitaker's "informed source" , quoted 24 May). This was the explanation given by the Director-General in a "Briefing for States Parties" on 28 May: Henderson "was tasked with temporarily assisting the FFM" but his report was "outside of the mandate of the FFM with regard to the formulation of its findings."

These three mutually contradictory excuses bring to mind Sigmund Freud's story of the defences offered by a man who was accused by his neighbour of having returned a kettle in a damaged condition:

In the first place, he had returned the kettle undamaged; in the second place it already had holes in it when he borrowed it; and in the third place, he had never borrowed it at all.

This fumbling response to the release of the document casts doubt on the Director-General's statement that the OPCW first became aware in March 2019 that it might have leaked. No leak investigation was launched at this time. It is however evident that by 14 March 2019 several delegations at the OPCW were aware that there was dissent among FFM team members. A commentary by the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs noted that the Executive Council on 14 March had blocked the Russian proposal to hold a briefing with "all without exception experts of the OPCW Mission" and commented that "such a briefing could reveal very serious inconsistencies in the anti-Syrian conclusions in the Final Report". A gloating tweet from the Netherlands delegation that the Russian proposal had been voted down with "only 5 votes in favour" was retweeted by the Canadian and UK delegations.

The explanations by the Director-General of how the FFM took into account the findings of the Engineering Assessment are somewhat contradictory. In a prepared statement on 28 May he indicated that the FFM report used the raw data collected by Henderson's sub-team but relied for analysis on the assessments of the three "external experts" who analysed these data:

This is what the FFM did with the information included in the publicly disclosed document; all available information was examined, weighed and deliberated. Diverse views were expressed, discussed and considered against the overall facts and evidence collected and analysed. With regard to the ballistics data collected by the FFM, they were analysed by three external experts commissioned by the FFM, and working independently from one another. In the end, while using different methods and instruments, they all reached the same conclusions that can be found in the FFM Final Report.

In an unscripted panel discussion at a conference on 6 June he appeared to imply that the Engineering Assessment had been considered but rejected as "not fit to the conclusion".

all the information given by any inspectors is considered but sometimes it is not fit to the conclusion. This information [the Engineering Assessment] was considered and was analysed, it was part of the investigation

Either of these explanations undermines the OPCW's credibility. If, as the briefing on 28 May indicated, the authors of the Final Report had excluded the OPCW's internal engineering assessment from consideration, relying only on the assessments of experts who had not inspected the sites or examined the cylinders, this would have been difficult to justify. If, as the Director-General indicated on 6 June, the authors of the Final Report had considered Henderson's assessment along with the three external assessments and decided in favour of the three external assessments, their failure to mention the existence of an internal assessment that was discordant with the other three assessments might reasonably be considered fraudulent. We might doubt also that the authors of the Final Report, having excluded the FFM's own engineering subteam, would have had the expertise required to make such a judgement. The rationale that Henderson's assessment was outside the mandate of the FFM appears to have been constructed at a later stage as a way out of this dilemma.

If we are to believe the Director-General, all three external engineering assessments independently reached the conclusions in the Final Report that at Location 2:

the damage observed is consistent with the creation of the aperture observed in the terrace by the cylinder found in that location.

and that at Location 4:

after passing through the ceiling, the cylinder continued altered trajectory, until reaching the position in which it was found.

As noted below, the Director-General has asked "civil society" to "believe in what we do". A first step towards restoring belief in the integrity of the OPCW's investigations would be to make the reports from all three external engineering consultancies publicly available.

The Director-General's briefing does not spell out how the Engineering Assessment was deemed to be "outside of the mandate of the FFM with regard to the formulation of its findings." The Technical Secretariat's response to Russian criticisms, dated 21 May, spells out more specifically its contention that to assess how the cylinders arrived at their respective locations was outside the mandate of the FFM:

the FFM report does not elaborate in any part on the "high probability that both cylinders were placed at Locations 2 and 4 manually rather than dropped from an aircraft". In fact, this type of information is deemed outside of the mandate and methodology of the FFM.

We reiterate that this argument is fallacious, and quote our last briefing note :

OPCW stated that "The FFM's mandate is to determine whether chemical weapons or toxic chemicals as weapons have been used in Syria." In Douma this could be reduced to deciding between two alternatives: (1) the gas cylinders were dropped from the air, implying that they were used as chemical weapons; (2) the cylinders were placed in position, implying that the incident was staged and that no chemical attack had occurred. Although to conclude that alternative (2) was correct would implicate the opposition, this would not be attribution of blame for a chemical attack but rather a determination that chemical weapons had not been used.

As Hitchens has noted , the contention that evidence that the cylinders were manually placed rather than dropped from the air would be "outside of the mandate and methodology of the FFM" contradicts explicit statements in the Interim Report and the Final Report. For instance the Interim Report had stated that "Work is ongoing to assess how the cylinders arrived at their respective locations". Hitchens commented that "I don't think the people who dreamed up this particular escape clause have thought through their ideas very well." the OPCW has not responded to his request for clarification.

In what appears to be a reference to the Working Group, the Director-General complained on 6 June that:

We are attacked with misinformation, with proxies that produced reports to undermine an official report of the Fact-Finding Mission about investigations in Syria, and I ask you, civil society, to believe in what we do.

The "misinformation" was not specified: we should welcome rebuttals showing, with direct quotations and references to original sources, where we have disseminated misinformation. The suggestion that we are "proxies" is a smear of the kind that we have become accustomed to. As for "civil society", if that term means anything it would include entities like the Working Group, whose members collaborate in their spare time unpaid to ask questions that academics in the field of arms control and all but a few corporate journalists have failed to ask. We are well aware that most staff in the OPCW continue to work professionally for the organization's mission of upholding the Chemical Weapons Convention. It should now be evident to OPCW staff, including those in senior management positions, that unless the capture of the Technical Secretariat by the France-UK-US-led alliance of States Parties is reversed, the future of the organization is at risk.

We now report on how the OPCW reports purporting to be the findings of the Fact-Finding Mission investigating the Douma incident were prepared. This is based on combining open source material with information communicated to us by OPCW staff members, whose identities we shall protect.

3 The Fact-Finding Mission in Syria

As we noted in an earlier briefing, the Chemical Weapons Convention (Part XI of the Verification Annex, "Investigations in cases of alleged use of chemical weapons") lays down strict procedures for investigations of alleged use, and does not empower OPCW management to interfere in such an investigation once the inspection team has been selected and dispatched. In April 2014, when the first alleged chlorine attacks were reported from opposition-held areas, the Director-General decided to create a new operation designated the "Fact-Finding Mission in Syria", with a mandate "to establish the facts surrounding allegations of the use of toxic chemicals, reportedly chlorine, for hostile purposes in the Syrian Arab Republic." This was announced on 29 April 2014, before any meeting of the Executive Council had considered it. The first report of the FFM stated that:

the establishment of the FFM was based on the general authority of the OPCW Director-General to seek to uphold at all times the object and purpose of the Chemical Weapons Convention;

This mechanism allowed the Technical Secretariat to set its own rules and procedures for the investigation of alleged chemical attacks in Syria. The first Team Leader of the Fact-Finding Mission was Malik Ellahi , who had been Political Adviser to the Director-General. After coming under fire in May 2014 when attempting an on-site inspection in opposition-held territory, the FFM resorted to collecting evidence in Turkey, with witnesses and materials provided by opposition-linked NGOs.

In early 2015 the Fact-Finding Mission was split into two: Team Alpha, headed by Len Phillips, and Team Bravo, headed by Steven Wallis. This arrangement was criticized by the Russian envoy to the OPCW who complained on 14 April 2017 that:

Under the mandate defined for [ the Fact-Finding Mission ] , its membership should be approved by the Syrian government, and it should be balanced. For some time, these provisions were observed somewhat, but then the mission was split into two groups. One [Team Bravo], led by Steven Wallis from Britain, works in contact with the Syrian government, while the other one [Team Alpha], headed by his fellow countryman Leonard Phillips, deals with the claims filed by the Syrian armed opposition. This latter group is working completely non-transparently. Its membership is classified, and no one knows where it goes or how it operates. They are allegedly using the same methodology as Steven Wallis's group, but they are clearly working mostly remotely, relying on the internet and the fabrications provided by Syrian opposition NGOs, and never go to Syria. At least, we are not aware of a single such trip.

In January 2018 Phillips was replaced as leader of Team Alpha by Sami Barrek. In January 2019 both teams were merged and Boban Cekovic , a former inspector who had worked as a decontamination specialist in the Serbian Ministry of Defence before joining OPCW, was rehired to become the Head of the Fact-Finding Mission.

On 23 January 2018 an initiative named the International Partnership against Impunity for Chemical Weapons was launched at a meeting in Paris. A leaked diplomatic telegram from the British diplomat Benjamin Norman indicated that the second meeting of the secret Small Group on Syria (representing France, UK, US, Saudi and Jordan) was to be held on the sidelines of this meeting, following the first meeting of this group on 12 January in Washington at which the US had confirmed its intention to maintain a significant military presence in Syria. On 4 February 2018 an alleged chemical attack was reported in Saraqib. We have commented elsewhere on the anomalies in the subsequent FFM report which concluded that in this incident "chlorine, released from cylinders through mechanical impact, was likely used as a chemical weapon". The International Partnership against Impunity for Chemical Weapons, to which 38 countries signed up, laid the basis for a UK-tabled resolution passed by the Conference of States Parties on 27 June 2018 deciding that:

the Secretariat shall 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 in Syria 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.

We note in passing that the FFM report on the Douma incident did not determine that "use or likely use" of a chemical weapon occurred, but used the more diffident wording "reasonable grounds".

On the basis of this resolution the Technical Secretariat established another operation that had not been provided for in the Chemical Weapons Convention, designated the Investigation and Identification Team (IIT). The newly-appointed director of the IIT, Santiago Oñate, who had been the legal adviser and later special adviser to the OPCW since 2004, cannot be a line manager (under OPCW rules about tenure, he can be employed only as a consultant). This implies that the staff of the IIT report to the Chief of Cabinet. The Principal Investigator of the IIT is Elise Coté , a Second Secretary at the Canadian embassy in The Hague. This is an obvious conflict of interest, as the Canadian government is strongly opposed to the Syrian government and maintains that "use of chemical weapons" by the Syrian government is an established fact for which it should be "held accountable". 4 The boss: Sébastien Braha

OPCW management are collectively referred to as "the first floor", where they have their offices. The current Director-General has a mostly ceremonial role (as was evident from his confused answers in a panel discussion on 6 June), and the effective boss of the OPCW is the Chief of Cabinet, Sébastien Braha, who has been a French diplomat since 2006 and served as the deputy French Permanent Representative to the OPCW from September 2014 onwards. On 22 May 2019, when one of us tweeted a screenshot of his Linkedin profile, this profile showed him to be still in this diplomatic post. Within a few days his profile was updated to show that he left his diplomatic post in July 2018 when he took up his post as Chief of Cabinet. Our sources report that even before he took up his post as an employee of the OPCW, he was frequently in the building giving instructions on expectations from his capital to the Technical Secretariat. 5 The Team Leader: Sami Barrek

The timeline of the Final Report records that the Team Leader "redeployed for information gathering activities from all other available sources" on 17 April 2018 three days after the team had arrived in Damascus, leaving the Deputy Team Leader in charge. A posting dated 22 April 2018 by a pro-government Syrian journalist writing as "Military Zonex" had reported this with more details:

the OPCW special mission headed by Mamadou Yerbanga continues its work in Syrian Douma. The previous head, Saami Barek was called off to another mission, to Turkey, due to unknown reasons. Earlier, the Syrian opposition claimed that Bashar Al Assad used chemical ammunition in Idlib. They also said that the ammunition fragments had been sent to Turkey. It is likely that Saami Barek (from Tunisia) is now in Turkey or at the north of Syria to help the opposition in gathering 'evidences' to blame the Syrian government in using chemical weapon. The Tunisian is likely to have established contacts with "White Helmets" - the organization, which has many times been caught in making fake videos demonstrating 'outcomes' of use of chemical weapon by the Syrian army.

We have confirmed from other sources that the Team Leader who left Damascus was Sami Barrek and that he was subsequently seen in Turkey with the White Helmets. As we pointed out, it is surprising that the Team Leader was suddenly redeployed from on-site inspections to take charge of information gathering activities elsewhere that would have far less evidential value. We have not been able to confirm that the Syrian opposition claimed a chemical attack in Idlib at this time, as Military Zonex reported.

Sami Barrek, originally Tunisian, has a background in analytical chemistry. His affiliation on a paper published in 2009 was with a lab in France. He joined the OPCW as an inspector in January 2010. OPCW employment contracts are term-limited to seven years, though for some inspectors these limits were extended or they were retained on Special Service Agreements (equivalent to consultancy contracts). Some former inspectors were re-hired for up to three years.

The Twitter account @samibarrek was set up in April 2013 but has never tweeted. One of its few followers is @LenP91535865 , an account set up in June 2018. Examination shows that this is Len Phillips , the leader of FFM Team Alpha from 2015 to 2017. As Sami Barrek's account has never tweeted, there is no obvious reason for Phillips to follow it other than to allow private messaging. Phillips's twitter account @LenP91535865 has two followers excluding a relative and authors of this article: the second follower was Sébastien Braha. As the 48 brief tweets posted by Phillips from June 2018 to May 2019 are unlikely to be of wide interest, the most plausible reason for Braha to have followed Phillips's twitter account would have been to allow private messaging. Phillips also follows Braha's twitter account.

We can thus identify what appear to be arrangements for private communication between three people: Barrek, the leader of the FFM team investigating the Douma incident; Phillips, working for the OPCW during 2018 as a freelance; and Braha, the Chief of Cabinet. This itself is not necessarily anything untoward (unless they were using this channel to communicate on OPCW matters) but it leads us to examine the possible role of Phillips. 6 The freelance: Len Phillips

Phillips's Linkedin biography records that after obtaining degrees in chemistry and engineering he worked for twelve years in the chemical industry. His last job in industry was as a process engineer at the Associated Octel plant in Anglesey, which closed in 2003 with the loss of 100 jobs. In January 2008 he began working as an inspector for the OPCW in The Hague, and was promoted to Inspection Team Leader in January 2011. Phillips's bio records for this period that he:

Led fact finding mission team and reported on allegations in Idlib, Spring 2015; Marea, August 2015; Khan Shaykhun, April 2017, Ltamenah, 30 March 2017.

These investigations were based on interviews with White Helmets in Turkey and materials that they provided. We have been told that Phillips met regularly in Turkey with James Le Mesurier, founder of the White Helmets. His biography records that after a sabbatical during the first quarter of 2018 he was from April 2018 a self-employed "Chemical investigations Consultant, with particular focus on use of chemicals as weapons".

On 8 April 2019 Phillips registered a UK company named PhBG Consultants Ltd , with an address in Anglesey. Although the incorporation document records that Phillips is sole director and sole shareholder, the acronym "PhBG" and the plural form "Consultants" in the company name suggest that there may be a partner. The "Nature of Business" registered for this company appears rather close to what an OPCW investigation might commission from "engineering experts".

66210 - Risk and damage evaluation 70229 - Management consultancy activities other than financial management 71122 - Engineering related scientific and technical consulting activities

Phillips's Linkedin profile lists two "Interests" apart from his old universities and the OPCW: the UK Government's Stabilisation Unit, and Bellingcat. On Twitter, Phillips appears to interact with Eliot Higgins and follows three other Bellingcat-associated accounts. He follows accounts associated with three opposition-linked NGOs that have provided evidence of alleged chemical attacks to FFM Team Alpha: the White Helmets, the Chemical Violations Documentation Centre Syria, and the Syrian American Medical Society. The first follower of the twitter account @LenP91535865 was Fahad Abu Waleed ( @c8ll08TZ3FM6e2s , joined in July 2018), who (front row, third from the right in a group photo ) had been based in Douma as a White Helmet and was affiliated to Jaish al-Islam, the opposition group in control of Douma up to April 2018. This affiliation is documented by a Facebook post dated 25 December 2016, in which Fahad commemorated "the first anniversary of the martydom" of Zahran Alloush, the notoriously brutal and sectarian leader of Jaish al-Islam, with the words "my sheikh and higher in the heavens". We note with unease that of the tweets during 2018 "liked" by Fahad, several were announcements of the evacuation of White Helmets to Jordan and their impending relocation to the UK. 7 The interim and final reports

As we pointed out in an earlier briefing note , when the Interim Report and the Final Report on the Douma investigation were examined together, there were several indicators of interference with the investigation:

Our sources have provided information that fills in some details of how the investigation was nobbled. An internal note shared among OPCW staff members dated 23 June 2018 stated that:

the OPCW report on the alleged chemical attack in Douma Syria on 7 April is currently under review by management. As it is currently drafted, the report indicates a high degree of probability that the alleged chemical attack was staged by an opposition group.

The note concluded:

I predict that the OPCW simply will not be allowed to issue a report that raises any doubts on the pre-judged guilty party.

What happened at this stage, leading to the release of an unsigned Interim Report with only lab results, was not transparent to FFM team members. From then onwards the investigation proceeded in secrecy, nominally led by Barrek, with all the FFM team members who had deployed to Douma excluded. The Director-General's statement that Henderson "was tasked with temporarily assisting the FFM" could be applied to all these team members; they do not know who wrote what was released as the final Report of the Fact-Finding Mission . It is presumed that Barrek as Team Leader up to the end of 2018 and Cekovic as Head of the FFM from the beginning of 2019 were the formal lead authors.

OPCW staff members have told us that the subsequent investigation involved consultation with Len Phillips, who was frequently seen in the building with Barrek during the summer of 2018. There is indirect corroboration of his role from his Twitter account:

8 Distortion of evidence in earlier reports where Phillips was FFM Team Leader

In the light of what we have learned about the role of Phillips in the FFM investigation of the Douma incident, it is relevant to examine his track record in three earlier FFM investigations of alleged chemical attacks where he was the Team Leader: these are Idlib (2015) , Khan Shaykhun (2017) , and Ltamenah where two FFM reports were issued: one on an alleged attack on 30 March 2017 (released 2 November 2017) , and the other on alleged attacks on 24 March and 25 March 2017, (released 13 June 2018) .

8.1 Idlib 2015: refrigerant canisters

In March 2015 a series of alleged chlorine attacks began in Idlib. The Report of the OPCW Fact-Finding Mission in Syria regarding alleged incidents in the Idlib Governorate of the Syrian Arab Republic between 16 March and 20 May 2015 concluded that:

several incidents that occurred in the Idlib Governorate of the Syrian Arab Republic between 16 March 2015 and 20 May 2015 likely involved the use of one or more toxic chemicals – probably containing the element chlorine – as a weapon.

Larson has examined in detail the contradictions in the story of the most widely-publicized of these incidents: the alleged attack in Sarmin on 16 March 2015 that led to the deaths of the Taleb family. We shall focus specifically on the alleged munitions.

Images from the sites of these alleged attacks showed canisters of R22 (a hydrochlorofluorocarbon refrigerant) and half-litre plastic bottles containing a purple substance that was later identified as potassium permanganate. Potassium permanganate reacts with hydrochloric acid to produce chlorine; this is a convenient and safe way to produce small quantities of chlorine in a laboratory. R22 itself is non-toxic, with or without mixing with permanganate.

The FFM report included a drawing of the alleged munition, made up of R22 canisters and bottles of potassium permanganate wrapped in detonating cord and enclosed in a steel barrel. It should have been clear to Phillips, as a chemical process engineer, that this device was implausible as a munition, as there is no mechanism for the potassium permanganate to mix with the contents of the canisters before the device is detonated. Binary chemical munitions are designed to mix the precursors in flight or before launch. More specifically, the FFM report omitted a key fact that was later noted by the Joint Investigative Mechanism's report : the R22 canisters are disposable and their repurposing or refilling would require technical modification of the valve. Phillips's FFM report did not mention this, though the FFM had been provided with several canisters allegedly used in these munitions. If the canisters could not have been refilled with something else, they could not have been used in chemical munitions either on their own or with potassium permanganate. 8.2 Khan Shaykhun 2017: recorded times of hospital admissions

In the Khan Shaykhun incident on 4 April 2017, a Syrian jet was alleged to have dropped a sarin-containing munition on the town, causing the deaths of at least 70 people who were seen from about 7 am onwards being hosed down by the White Helmets outside their base in a cave complex near the town, and later laid out in morgues. The Joint Investigative Mechanism's investigation of the incident reported that a flight map (presumably provided by the US military) showed that the Syrian jet had passed no closer than 5 km from the town, effectively ruling out an airstrike as the explanation for the incident. Although the FFM did not have access to this flight map, it ignored other observations that should have cast serious doubt on whether a chemical attack had occurred as described. One of these observations was the recorded times of hospital admissions. The report of the Joint Investigative Mechanism noted that hospital records showed admission times before the alleged attack occurred.

The Mechanism received the medical records of 247 patients from Khan Shaykhun who had been admitted to various health-care facilities, Analysis of the records revealed that in 57 cases, patients had been admitted to five hospitals before the incident (at 0600, 0620 and 0640 hours). In 10 of those cases, patients appear to have been admitted to a hospital 125 km away from Khan Shaykhun at 0700 hours, while another 42 patients appear to have been admitted to a hospital 30 km away at 0700 hours. The Mechanism did not investigate those discrepancies and cannot determine whether they are linked to any possible staging scenario or are the result of poor record-keeping in chaotic conditions."

The FFM had reported that they received "699 pages of records (including autopsies, medical records, death certificates and other patient information)" and that:

The team collected a number of patient records, death certificates, and other medical documents from medical facilities throughout northern Syria, collected from medical NGOs, the Idlib Health Directorate (IHD), and the Khan Shaykhun Medical Centre.

The records from the Idlib Health Directorate covered 292 exposed individuals including 50 fatalities. If most of these fatal cases were recorded as not admitted to health-care facilities, the number of medical records collected by the FFM matches approximately the number received by the Mechanism, implying that these sets of records were largely the same. Whatever may be the explanation for the inconsistency of the recorded admission times with the time of the alleged attack, the failure of the FFM to mention it casts doubt on the reliability and integrity of the report. 8.3 Ltamenah 2017: intact sarin persisting after months in the open

The Report of the OPCW Fact-Finding Mission in Syria regarding alleged incidents in Ltamenah on 24 and 25 March 2017 dated 13 June 2018 concluded that "sarin was very likely used as a chemical weapon in the south of Ltamenah on 24 March 2017" and that "chlorine was very likely used as a chemical weapon at Ltamenah Hospital and the surrounding area on 25 March 2017". Witnesses of the alleged incident on 25 March 2017 reported that a gas cylinder dropped from the air had pierced the roof of the Ltamenah cave hospital, causing three deaths. Chlorinated organic molecules had been found in samples from this attack but so had sarin degradation products on the clothes of one of the victims. The FFM attributed the sarin degradation products to secondary contamination from a previously unreported sarin attack the day before in which two munitions had allegedly fallen on agricultural land outside the town.

Environmental samples from the alleged incident on 24 March 2017 were received by the FFM team eleven months later on 19 February 2018, after the White Helmets had been prompted to provide them in an "interview process" that had started at the end of July 2017:

Based on information supplied during interviews, the FFM identified munition parts that were of potential interest in relation to the alleged incident of 24 March 2017 and arranged for their collection by an NGO. As a result, further environmental samples, including remnants of alleged munition parts, were received by the FFM team on 19 February 2018.

Surprisingly, despite the delay in obtaining these samples, they were found to contain intact sarin as well as sarin degradation products. Even if the White Helmets had collected the munition parts immediately after the "interview process", sealed them and stored them in a freezer till February 2018, they would still have been lying in the open for at least 15 weeks. A review of studies by western defence research establishments shows that intact sarin does not persist in the open for more than one or two days in warm weather. While it is possible that intact sarin could persist for longer than this, for instance between surfaces or adsorbed, the report does not provide any such explanation, or even record the date when these samples were purportedly collected. As chemistry graduates trained to inspect chemical weapons, Phillips and his successor Barrek could be expected to be aware that this was a key point in evaluating whether there had been a sarin attack as alleged.

As no reports or images of the incident on 24 March 2017 appeared at the time, sceptics might doubt that it happened, and might even suspect collusion between the FFM team and the White Helmets in coming up with this explanation, at least three months later, for the presence of sarin degradation products in the samples from the alleged chlorine attack on 25 March. A more plausible explanation for the presence of sarin degradation products in environmental samples from an opposition base on 25 March is that preparations were being made for the incident in Khan Shaykhun on 4 April.

In summary, in the reports of these three investigations by FFM Team Alpha when Phillips was Team Leader, there are indications that evidence favouring staging over a chemical attack was ignored or distorted. This strengthens the case for retracting all these reports, not just the Final Report on the Douma incident, and allowing independent reassessment of the material collected. 9 UK-led information operations associated with alleged chemical attacks

From combining all available information, it is now clear that several entities involved in reporting and documenting alleged chemical attacks have their origin in a covert programme launched by the UK government in 2012. In this programme, like a low-budget theatrical production, the same actors reappear in different roles. For instance Hamish de Bretton-Gordon (HdBG) appears successively as covert agent collecting samples for Porton Down , as independent chemical weapons expert quoted in the media, as the founder of a small business setting up an NGO to collect evidence for the OPCW, and from 2016, described as a "former spy" , in the role of a humanitarian worker coordinating a network of hospitals . It is likely that this programme would have attempted to co-opt OPCW staff, especially UK nationals.

9.1 Ministry of Defence: Targeting and Information Operations

In June 2012 the UK government established a covert StratCom programme on the Syrian conflict, overseen by former Lt-Col Kevin Stratford-Wright in the Targeting and Information Operations directorate of the Ministry of Defence, later renamed as Military Strategic Effects. Stratford-Wright described this programme as "the UK's largest of its kind since the Cold War". Metadata revealed that tender documents for provision of media operations for the "moderate armed opposition", issued in 2013 by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, were created by Stratford-Wright. This contract was eventually awarded to a company named InCoStrat set up by Paul Tilley, another former Lt-Col who had been working with Stratford-Wright in the Targeting and Information Operations directorate. 9.2 ARK, Basma, Mayday Rescue and the White Helmets

An early step was the establishment in Istanbul of a company named Access Resource Knowledge (ARK) by Alistair Harris, a former FCO diplomat, together with a pro-opposition media outlet named Basma. Basma was the media source for the first alleged chemical attack in Homs in December 2012. As the "stabilisation and development" company ARK Group DMCC based in Dubai, ARK has received £19 million from the FCO since July 2015. The "Mayday Rescue" operation headed by Le Mesurier was spun out of ARK, where Le Mesurier worked . According to publicly available FCO expenditure records, a total of £43 million was paid to "Mayday Rescue" between May 2015 and October 2018, not to the non-profit Stichting Mayday Rescue Foundation registered in the Netherlands but to the company Mayday Rescue FZ-LLC established in 2014 and based in Dubai. 9.3 SecureBio and the CBRN Task Force

In April 2012, the company SecureBio set up a year earlier by HdBG became active with a new split of equity , and a separate company SecureBio Forensics was created. HdBG became prominent during 2013 in his overt role as an expert commentator on chemical weapons, and (as he revealed ) in a covert role collecting samples from Syria for analysis at Porton Down and its French counterpart at Le Bouchet. He went on to establish a CBRN Task Force that provided apparently fabricated evidence of a chlorine attack in Talmenes to the FFM in 2014. He subsequently became affiliated with the ostensibly humanitarian NGOs UOSSM and Doctors under Fire . Recently he disseminated a story of an alleged chlorine attack in Idlib on 19 May 2018, shortly after it was first reported by a media outlet linked to the rebranded al-Qaeda affiliate Hayat Tahrir al-Sham. 9.4 UK communicators

We have noted the role of Brian Whitaker in 2012 when he promoted the blogger Eliot Higgins to prominence as a self-taught expert on the munitions used in the Syrian conflict. Higgins would later be acclaimed as the open source investigator who documented munitions found at the sites of alleged chemical attacks in 2013. Whitaker was the first journalist to devote an article to attacking the Working Group, in February 2018 when its only collective output had been a brief blog post. In May 2019 he took on a new role in channelling an "informed source" within the OPCW.

Professor Scott Lucas 's communications in support of UK foreign policy appear to date back to the establishment of his website Enduring America in October 2008, at a time when UK diplomats were privately expressing concern that the incoming Obama administration might seek an agreement with Iran. Lucas persistently attacked two US foreign policy experts, Hillary Mann and Flynt Leverett, who advocated a US-Iran rapprochement. He stated in a tweet on 16 May 2019 that he had been "developing info/contacts re OPCW process on Syria since 2013". In a tweet on 30 April 2019, he revealed that "One of privileges of this job is meeting a lot of wonderful people on ground who, at risk to themselves, want to get story out. So that is why I have 'facts', in and beyond OPCW report." It is not clear what he meant by "this job", or why anyone whose honest intention was to "get story out" would choose Lucas as an outlet. 10 A next step: replication of the engineering studies

As we have noted , the Final Report recorded that the Syrian government retained custody of the two cylinders used for the internal Engineering Assessment, after they were tagged and sealed by "FFM team members" (presumably the engineering sub-team) on 4 June 2018. With access to the cylinders, and to open source records of observations at the locations where they were found, it should be possible to establish whether the findings of the engineering sub-team can be replicated, and to determine which of the two alternative hypotheses – dropped from aircraft or manually placed – is supported.

Such a study could be undertaken by an international panel of impact engineering experts, hosted by a university department with access to supercomputing facilities, and published in accordance with modern scientific standards for reproducible research so that all raw data and computer code used to generate the results are made freely available. For such a report to be credible it would have to be independent of the OPCW, although the IIT could be invited to participate and to provide the measurements taken by FFM team members at the locations where the cylinders were found. The IIT has no expertise to undertake or assess studies in this specialized field. The forthcoming meeting of the Executive Council would be an appropriate occasion to table such a proposal, on the basis that the proposed replication study will proceed with or without OPCW participation. 11 Role of external engineering experts and toxicologists

The Douma investigation included external consultations with engineering experts and toxicologists. The Final Report does not present the results of these consultations in their original form. The exclusion of the FFM's own Engineering Assessment raises suspicion that other assessments may have been omitted or distorted. We are sceptical of the Director-General's statement that all three external engineering consultants "reached the same conclusions that can be found in the FFM final report". It is evident also that the opinions of the toxicologists have not been presented accurately. The explanation given in the Final Report for why the victims did not attempt to escape is that they were exposed to "an agent capable of quickly killing or immobilising". Toxicologists would have been well aware that chlorine from a cylinder on the roof could not have done this, and would have said so. We invite the Technical Secretariat, if it really believes that it can stand by the FFM report on the Douma investigation, to take a step towards restoring the credibility of the OPCW by making public all the reports provided by engineering experts and toxicologists who were consulted during this investigation. We do not expect the Technical Secretariat to do this, and therefore we appeal to those who have access to the records of these consultations to make these documents publicly available.

As we have previously noted, if the Douma attack was staged the only plausible explanation for the deaths of the victims is that they were murdered as captives by the opposition group in control of Douma at the time. The visual evidence of this has been examined elsewhere . In most civilian and military jurisdictions, the duty to disclose a cover-up of such a crime would override any confidentiality agreement with an employer or with another organization.

Emails sent from a Protonmail account to our Protonmail addresses are secure. Messages can be additionally encrypted with our PGP public keys. Our Protonmail addresses and PGP key fingerprints can be found on our individual home pages, linked here . 12 Acknowledgements

We thank the OPCW staff members who continue to communicate with us, some of whom have provided detailed comments on earlier drafts of this briefing note. We thank Carmen Renieri for open source research on the White Helmets, which made use of archived studies by the late Ursula Behr Taubert .

adrian pols , 26 June 2019 at 10:59 AM

R22, chlorodifluoromethane, a ubiquitous refrigerant used in air conditioning units worldwide. I've got a 30 lb cylinder of the stuff I use in various AC units I'm responsible for. Yes, a "Chlorine containing chemical". How sweet is that?

[Jun 20, 2019] Bias, Lies Videotape Doubts Dog Confirmed Syria Chemical Attacks

Jun 20, 2019 | www.theamericanconservative.com

Bias, Lies & Videotape: Doubts Dog 'Confirmed' Syria Chemical Attacks Disturbing new evidence suggests 2018 incident might've been staged, putting everything else, including U.S. retaliation, into question. By Scott Ritter June 20, 2019

(By Mikhail Semenov /Shutterstock) 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."

As you recall, the Trump administration initiated a coordinated bombing of Syrian government facilities with the UK and France within days of the Douma incident and before a full investigation of the scene could be completed, charging Assad with the "barbaric act" of using "banned chemical weapons" to kill dozens of people on the scene. Bomb first, ask questions later.

The OPCW began their investigation days after the strikes . The group drew on witness testimonies, environmental and biomedical sample analysis results, and additional digital information from witnesses (i.e. video and still photography), as well as toxicological and ballistic analyses. In July 2018, the OPCW released an interim report on Douma that said "no organophosphorus nerve agents or their degradation products were detected, either in the environmental samples or in plasma samples from the alleged casualties," but that chlorine, which is not a banned chemical weapon, was detected there.

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The report cited ballistic tests that indicated that the canisters found at two locations on the scene were dropped from the air (witnesses blamed Assad's forces), but investigations were ongoing. The final report in March reiterated the ballistics data, and the conclusions were just as underwhelming, saying that all of the evidence gathered there provides "reasonable grounds that the use of a toxic chemical as a weapon took place," due in part to traces of chlorine and explosives at the impact sites.

Now, the leaked internal report apparently suppressed by the OPCW says there is a "high probability" that a pair of chlorine gas cylinders that had been claimed as the source of the toxic chemical had been planted there by hand and not dropped by aircraft. This was based on extensive engineering assessments and computer modeling as well as all of the evidence previously afforded to the OPCW.

What does this mean? To my mind, the canisters were planted by the opposition in an effort to frame the Syrian government.

The OPCW has confirmed with the validity of this shocking document and has offered statements to reporters, including Peter Hitchens, who published the organization's response to him on May 16.

The ramifications of this turn of events extend far beyond simply disproving the allegations concerning the events in April 2018. The credibility of the OPCW itself and every report and conclusion it has released concerning allegations of chemical weapons use by the Syrian government are now suspect. The extent to which the OPCW has, almost exclusively, relied upon the same Syrian opposition sources who are now suspected of fabricating the Douma events raises serious questions about both the methodology and motivation of an organization that had been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2013 for "its extensive efforts to eliminate chemical weapons."

In a response to Agence France-Presse (AFP) , OPCW director general Fernando Arias acknowledged there is an internal probe into the memo leak but that he continues to "stand by the impartial and professional conclusions" of the group's original report. He played down the role of the memo's author, Ian Henderson, and said his alternative hypotheses were not included in the final OPCW report because they "pointed at possible attribution" and were therefore outside the scope of the OPCW's fact finding mission in Syria.

Self-produced videos and witness statements provided by the pro-opposition Violations Documentation Center, Syrian Civil Defense (also known as the White Helmets), and the Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS) , a non-profit organization that operates hospitals in opposition-controlled Syria, represented the heart and soul of the case against the Syrian government regarding the events in Douma. To my mind, the internal memo now suggests that these actors were engaging in a systemic effort to disseminate disinformation that would facilitate Western military intervention with the goal of removing Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from power.

This theory has been advanced by pro-Assad forces and their Russian partners for some time. But independent reporting on the ground since the Douma incident has sussed out many of the same concerns. From James Harkin, director of the Center for Investigative Journalism and a fellow at Harvard University's Shorenstein Center, who traveled to the site of the attacks and reported for The Intercept in February of this year:

The imperative to grab the fleeting attention of an international audience certainly seems to have influenced the presentation of the evidence. In the videos and photos that appeared that evening, most analysts and observers agree that there were some signs that the bodies and gas canisters had been moved or tampered with after the event for maximum impact. The Syrian media activists who'd arrived at the apartment block with the dead people weren't the first to arrive on the scene; they'd heard about the deaths from White Helmet workers and doctors at the hospital.

The relationship between the OPCW and the Syrian opposition can be traced back to 2013. That was when the OPCW was given the responsibility of eliminating Syria's declared arsenal of chemical weapons; this task was largely completed by 2014. However, the Syrian opposition began making persistent allegations of chemical weapon attacks by the Syrian government in which chlorine, a substance not covered by Syria's obligation to be disarmed of chemical weapons, was used. In response, the OPCW established the Fact Finding Mission (FFM) in 2014 "to establish facts surrounding allegations of the use of toxic chemicals, reportedly chlorine, for hostile purposes in the Syrian Arab Republic."

The priority of effort for the FFM early on was to investigate allegations of the use of chlorine as a weapon. Since, according to its May 2014 summary, "all reported incidents took place at locations that the Syrian Government considers to be outside its effective control," the FFM determined that the success of its mission was contingent upon "identification of key actors, such as local authorities and/or representatives of armed opposition groups in charge of the territories in which these locations are situated; the establishment of contacts with these groups in an atmosphere of mutual trust and confidence that allows the mandate and objectives of the FFM to be communicated."

So from its very inception, the FFM had to rely on the anti-Assad opposition and its supporters for nearly everything. The document that governed the conduct of the FFM's work in Syria was premised on the fact that the mission would be dependent in part upon "opposition representatives" to coordinate, along with the United Nations, the "security, logistical and operational aspects of the OPCW FFM," including liaising "for the purposes of making available persons for interviews."

One could sense the bias resulting from such an arrangement when, acting on information provided to it by the opposition regarding an "alleged attack with chlorine" on the towns of Kafr Zeyta and Al-Lataminah, the FFM changed its original plans to investigate an alleged chlorine attack on the town of Harasta. This decision, the FFM reported, "was welcomed by the opposition." When the FFM attempted to inspect Kafr Zeyta, however, it was attacked by opposition forces, with one of its vehicles destroyed by a roadside bomb, one inspector wounded, and several inspectors detained by opposition fighters.

The inability to go to Kafr Zeyta precluded the group from "presenting definitive conclusions," according to the report. But that did not stop the FFM from saying that the information given to them from these opposition sources, "including treating physicians with whom the FFM was able to establish contact," and public domain material, "lends credence to the view that toxic chemicals, most likely pulmonary irritating agents such as chlorine, have been used in a systematic manner in a number of attacks" against Kafr Zeyta.

So the conclusion/non-conclusion was based not on any onsite investigation, but rather videos produced by the opposition and subsequently released via social media and interviews also likely set up by opposition groups (White Helmets, SAMS, etc.), which we know, according to their own documents, served as the key liaisons for the FFM on the ground.

All of this is worrisome. It is unclear at this point how many Syrian chemical attacks have been truly confirmed since the start of the war. In February of this year, the Global Policy Institute released a report saying there were 336 such reports, but they were broken down into "confirmed," "credibly substantiated," and "comprehensively confirmed." Out of the total, 111 were given the rigorous "comprehensively confirmed" tag, which, according to the group, meant the incidents were "were investigated and confirmed by competent international bodies or backed up by at least three highly reliable independent sources of evidence."

They do not go into further detail about those bodies and sources, but are sure to thank the White Helmets and their "implementing partner" Mayday Rescue and Violations Documentation Center, among other groups, as "friends and partners" in the study. So it becomes clear, looking at the Kafr Zeytan inspection and beyond, that the same opposition sources that are informing the now-dubious OPCW reports are also delivering data and "assistance" to outside groups reaching international audiences, too.

The role of the OPCW in sustaining the claims made by the obviously biased Syrian opposition sources cannot be understated -- by confirming the allegations of chemical weapons use in Douma, the OPCW lent credibility to claims that otherwise should not -- and indeed would not -- have been granted, and in doing so violated the very operating procedures that had been put in place by the OPCW to protect the credibility of the organization and its findings.

There is an old prosecutorial rule -- one lie, all lies -- that comes into play in this case. With the leaked internal report out there, suggesting that the sources in the Douma investigation were agenda-driven and dishonest, all information ever provided to the OPCW by the White Helmets, SAMS, and other Syrian opposition groups must now, in my mind, be viewed as tainted and therefore unusable.

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.

JPH 8 hours ago

The OPCW reaction clearly considering the investigation into the leak instead of apologizing for not publishing this report is revealing its bias.

There has been a push from 'the West' to have the OPCW also attributing responsibility. Given the bias already on display this will further politicize the OPCW.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk...

As soon as such organizations become propaganda tools their credibility goes into the wind.

Given what we know of the Skripal hoax and the Tories attitude to the truth with their government funded 'Integrity Initiative' through the Institute of Statecraft' that exactly what the British Intelligence intended.

https://medium.com/@tomseck...

One may note the specific personal links through Orbis/Steele/Miller between the 'Integrity Initiative' and the fake 'Trump Dossier' and one ought to be alarmed by 'services' of a British intelligence out of control, but given the FBI/CIA involvement and exploitation of that fake 'Trump Dossier' it looks that the US has a quite similar problem.

john 11 hours ago
Our government lied to start a war! When has that always happened.

[May 31, 2019] Comments on Official Response by OPCW to the Engineering Assessment on Douma

OPSW proved to be a gang of a despicable, completely bought by the USA bottomfeeders. Looks like they are now a part of "Intergity Initiative"
At this point credibility of the USA and UK experts on the topic is not zero, it is negative: they systematically generate false flags.
Truth be told after Skripals affair the level of credibility of the UK government and expects is far below zero in any case. This is just a gang of despicable warmongers.
Notable quotes:
"... If SST readers are confused by OPCW's constantly shifting explanations for why the Final Report on the Douma incident excluded the Engineering Assessment, they're not the only ones. ..."
"... Unfortunately for whoever thought up this defence, it is explicitly contradicted by both the Interim Report (published last July) and the Final Report, which state that the objective of the engineering studies was to evaluate how the cylinders arrived in position. ..."
May 29, 2019 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Comments on official response to the release of the Engineering Assessment of the Douma cylinders Paul McKeigue, David Miller, Jake Mason, Piers Robinson

Members of Working Group on Syria, Propaganda and Media 1 Introduction

This post comments on the response to our release of the Executive Summary of the Engineering Assessment of the Douma cylinders on 13 May 2018. All emphases in quoted passages are added by us. After OPCW had confirmed the document to be genuine, the story was covered extensively by Russian media.

An informed commentary by Professor Hiroyuki Aoyama in Tokyo has been published on Yahoo News's Japanese site. The only coverage in western corporate media has been by Peter Hitchens in the Mail on Sunday , Robert Fisk in the Independent and Tucker Carlson on Fox .

Other journalists who have been in touch with us have told us that their stories were spiked by editors. As expected, the story has reached much larger numbers through websites and videos that have disseminated it.

2 OPCW's response to the release of the document

2.1 Official response

In an email dated 11 May and shown to us, Deepti Choubey, the head of OPCW Public Affairs, wrote:

Thank you for reaching out to us. It is exclusively through the Fact-Finding Mission, set up in 2014, that the OPCW establishes facts surrounding allegations of use of toxic chemicals for hostile purposes in the Syrian Arab Republic. On 1 March 2019, the OPCW has issued its final and only valid official report, signed by the Director-General, regarding the incident that took place in Douma, Syrian Arab Republic, on 7 April 2018. The document you shared with us is not part of any of the material produced by the FFM. The individual mentioned in the document has never been a member of the FFM .

A subsequent email on 16 May stated:

The OPCW establishes facts surrounding allegations of the use of toxic chemicals for hostile purposes in the Syrian Arab Republic through the Fact-Finding Mission (FFM), which was set up in 2014. The OPCW Technical Secretariat reaffirms that the FFM complies with established methodologies and practices to ensure the integrity of its findings. The FFM takes into account all available, relevant, and reliable information and analysis within the scope of its mandate to determine its findings. Per standard practice, the FFM draws expertise from different divisions across the Technical Secretariat as needed. All information was taken into account, deliberated, and weighed when formulating the final report regarding the incident in Douma, Syrian Arab Republic, on 7 April 2018. On 1 March 2019, the OPCW issued its final report on this incident, signed by the Director-General.

Per OPCW rules and regulations, and in order to ensure the privacy, safety, and security of personnel, the OPCW does not provide information about individual staff members of the Technical Secretariat. Pursuant to its established policies and practices, the OPCW Technical Secretariat is conducting an internal investigation about the unauthorised release of the document in question. At this time, there is no further public information on this matter and the OPCW is unable to accommodate requests for interviews.

This was taken as confirmation that the document was genuine.

2.2 Unofficial briefings

Following OPCW's confirmation on 16 May that the document we had released was genuine, two individuals in the UK whose communications have supported UK government policy on Syria favoring regime change – Professor Scott Lucas of Birmingham University, and the former Guardian journalist Brian Whitaker – began reporting that they had inside information on how the Engineering Assessment had been excluded from the Final Report.

2.2.1 Lucas

On 16 May Lucas reported that:

Henderson was writing what was, in effect, a dissenting assessment from that of most of the OPCW's team and consultant experts. His findings were considered but were a minority opinion as final report was written.

He followed this with a remarkably indiscreet tweet asserting that "I know how OPCW review process was conducted and what place Henderson's assessment had in it." When challenged to explain his connection to OPCW, Lucas did not answer. Hitchens reported on 24 May that OPCW Public Affairs had refused to comment on whether Lucas was receiving authorised briefings from OPCW.

2.2.2 Whitaker

Whitaker was at first more circumspect about his sources, reporting on 16 May that:

One story circulating in the chemical weapons community (though not confirmed) is that Henderson had wanted to join the FFM and got rebuffed but was then given permission to do some investigating on the sidelines of the FFM.

Eliot Higgins of Bellingcat extended Whitaker's version with:

This reporting by @Brian_Whit on the leaked Douma report that the conspiracy theorists and chemical weapon denialists are so excited about is consistent with what I'm hearing . Looks like they all got played by a disgruntled OPCW employee.

In an article posted on 24 May, Whitaker was more explicit in reporting the spin of "an informed source" on the Engineering Assessment.

an informed source has now shed some light on it. The key point here is the FFM's terms of reference. Its basic role was to establish facts about the alleged attack, and it was not allowed to apportion blame -- that is the job of the OPCW's newly-created Investigation and Identification Team (IIT). Although the FFM determined that the cylinders were probably dropped from the air, the published report (in line with its mandate) omitted any mention of the obvious implication that they had been dropped by regime aircraft. According to the informed source, when Henderson's assessment was reviewed there were concerns that it came too close to attributing responsibility, and thus fell outside the scope of the FFM's mandate. Whether or not that was the right decision, there was no doubt that Henderson's assessment did fall within the mandate of the new Investigation and Identification Team. For that reason, according to the source, he was advised to pass it to the IIT instead -- and he did so.

Unless this account was entirely fabricated, it could only have come from someone with close knowledge of how the Final Report had been prepared. A subsequent tweet from Whitaker on 25 May, presumably channelling the same source, confirmed that "Henderson and others" had been in Douma:

Henderson and others did go to Douma to provide temporary support to the FFM, but they were not official members of the FFM.

2.3 What the channelling of off-the-record briefings tells us

It is likely that (at least on this occasion) Lucas and Whitaker are telling the truth, and that they have been briefed by someone with close knowledge of how the FFM Final Report was prepared. If these briefings had not been authorised, OPCW Public Affairs could easily have responded to Hitchens's question with a standard statement reiterating that "there is no further public information on this matter" and that this extended to off-the-record briefings. We would expect OPCW press officers to be reluctant to issue further statements that could subsequently be shown to be false.

Like cellular biologists who perturb a complex system and measure its outputs, we can infer from these observations the existence of a pathway. This pathway connects the production of OPCW reports on alleged chemical attacks in Syria with a network of communicators in the UK who in different ways have promoted the cause of regime change in Syria since 2012. It is evident that Lucas and Whitaker are output nodes of this pathway. From August 2012, Whitaker as the Guardian's Middle East editor promoted Higgins from obscure beginnings as a blogger to become a widely-cited source on the Syrian conflict. Whitaker was the first journalist to devote an article to attacking the Working Group, in February 2018 when its only collective output had been a brief blog post.

It is of course possible that OPCW management for some procedural reason was unable to provide further information on the record, and sought to disseminate an accurate version of events via off-the-record briefings. But the choice of such highly partisan commentators as Lucas and Whitaker as channels inevitably calls into question the good faith of whoever provided these briefings, and undermines any remaining pretence to impartiality on the part of OPCW management.

2.4 Discrepancies between versions of OPCW's response

An established method in investigative journalism is to compare official versions and to infer from discrepancies what they are trying to hide. On 11 May OPCW Public Affairs stated that "The document you shared with us is not part of any of the material produced by the FFM. The individual mentioned in the document has never been a member of the FFM". After we pointed out that these two statements were provably false – the external collaboration on the engineering assessment of the Douma cylinders must have been authorised by OPCW, and Henderson could hardly have been in Damascus on a tourist visa – they were not repeated on the record. By 16 May OPCW Public Affairs had formulated a new policy: "Per OPCW rules and regulations the OPCW does not provide information about individual staff members of the Technical Secretariat." A more subtle version of Henderson's role was then channelled through Lucas and Whitaker: "minority opinion", "on the sidelines" and elaborated by Higgins as "disgruntled OPCW employee"'. Between 16 May and 25 May the story channelled through Whitaker changed from "Henderson had wanted to join the FFM and got rebuffed but was then given permission to do some investigating on the sidelines of the FFM." to admitting that "Henderson and others" were in Douma "to provide temporary support to the FFM".

On 24 May Whitaker's informed source admits that "Henderson's assessment was reviewed" for the Final Report, no longer attempting to maintain that the Engineering Assessment was not part of the FFM's process. If we strip away the flannel from this latest story, it appears to be accurate. The "informed source" tells us that the Engineering Assessment was excluded from the Final Report not because its technical analysis had been rebutted, but because the conclusion that the cylinders had been placed in position rather than dropped from the air would necessarily have attributed responsibility for the incident to the opposition .

The argument that the mandate of the FFM prevented it from endorsing the Engineering Assessment's conclusion is easily refuted as a matter of logic. Announcing the release of the Final Report, OPCW stated that "The FFM's mandate is to determine whether chemical weapons or toxic chemicals as weapons have been used in Syria." In Douma this could be reduced to deciding between two alternatives: (1) the gas cylinders were dropped from the air, implying that they were used as chemical weapons; (2) the cylinders were placed in position, implying that the incident was staged and that no chemical attack had occurred. Although to conclude that alternative (2) was correct would implicate the opposition, this would not be attribution of blame for a chemical attack but rather a determination that chemical weapons had not been used.

Clearly a verdict that the alleged chemical attack had been staged would have been unacceptable to the French government, which had joined in the US-led missile attack on 14 April 2018. We can surmise that the Chief of Cabinet of OPCW, Sébastien Braha, who (according to his Linkedin profile ) is still in post as a French diplomat, would have been in a difficult position if he had allowed the FFM to release a report that reached this conclusion. He would be in an even more difficult position if he were to allow the newly-established Investigation and Identification Team (IIT), which also reports to him, to overturn the conclusions of the Final Report and report that the alleged chemical attack was staged. Even if Braha's failure to update his online profile with the date of leaving his diplomatic post is an oversight, this would still be a conflict of interest based on the OECD definition of what "a reasonable person, knowing the relevant facts, would conclude". As we have noted, OPCW appears to have no arrangements for managing conflicts of interest. Until the governance and working practices of OPCW are radically reformed, it is hard to see how neutral observers can have confidence in the impartiality of the FFM or the IIT.

3 Government responses to an alleged chlorine attack on 19 May 3.1 Reports of the alleged attack

Possible allusions to the release of the Engineering Assessment on 13 May can be discerned in government responses to a report of an alleged chlorine attack in Idlib on 19 May. The earliest report , mentioning three missiles or shells loaded with chlorine was from an Arabic-language website named ebaa.news at 11.01 am Syrian time. The location was given as Kubina Hill in Kabbana village, on the border with Lattakia. At 12.46 am Syrian time Hamish de Bretton-Gordon (HdBG) tweeted

Appears to be a chlorine attack from Regime artillery shells in Jose Al Shugour village - 4 casualties being evacuated for treatment

"Jose Al Shugour village" is presumably the town of Jisr Al-Shughour. Rami Abdulrahman's Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported on 22 May that four fighters were treated in hospital after they "suffocated in the intense and violent shelling by the regime forces, within caves and trenches" but did not endorse the claims of a chlorine attack, noting that the source of this story was "the Media platform of Hayat Tahrir al-Sham". The story was elaborated in a Fox News report on 23 May that quoted a "Dr Ahmad" from Idlib, who reported that he had treated the casualties. Fox News also quoted Nidal Shikhani of the Chemical Violations Documentation Centre Syria (CVDCS).

A possible match for the identity of "Dr Ahmad" is Dr Ahmad al-Dbis, quoted by Reuters on 4 May 2019 as Safety and Security Manager for the Union of Medical Care and Relief Organisations (UOSSM), describing airstrikes on Idlib and northern Hama. Since 2016 both HdBG and the CBRN Task Force that he set up in 2013 have been affiliated to UOSSM. A report from 2014 quotes a "Dr Ahmad" described as a medic trained by HdBG for the CBRN Task Force. CVDCS is an NGO that has worked closely with the OPCW Fact-Finding Mission since 2015 to provide purported eyewitnesses for interview in Syria, originally established in 2012 as the Office of Documentation of the Chemical File in Syria , and later registered in Brussels as a non-profit company named Same Justice. This company never complied with the legal requirement to file accounts, and went into liquidation on 27 February 2019.

The ebaa.news site appears to be closely linked to Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), frequently quoting HTS spokesmen and sometimes reporting exclusive stories obtained from HTS. On 31 May 2018 HTS was designated by the US Department of State as a Foreign Terrorist Organization and a Specially Designated Global Terrorist. The Coordinator for Counterterrorism noted that this designation "serves notice that the United States is not fooled by this al-Qa'ida affiliate's attempt to rebrand itself." In conclusion, the provenance of this story of a chemical attack on 19 May is dubious, and the extent to which the sources are independent of one another is not clear.

3.2 UK response

On 22 May John Woodcock MP asked at Prime Minister's Questions :

British experts are this morning investigating a suspected chlorine attack by al-Assad in Idlib. If it is proved, will she lead the international response against the return of this indiscriminate evil?

As expected, the Prime Minister gave a bellicose answer, but made no reference to OPCW.

We of course acted in Syria, with France and the United States, when we saw chemical weapons being used there. We are in close contact with the United States and are monitoring the situation closely, and if any use of chemical weapons is confirmed, we will respond appropriately.

Woodcock's "British experts" appear to have included HdBG, who had suggested in a tweet the day before that Woodcock should ask the Prime Minister about Idlib, though not about a chemical attack. In a subsequent tweet Woodcock stated that his experts were "on the ground in Syria".

3.3 French response

The daily press from the French foreign ministry on 22 May responded to a question on the alleged chemical attack on 19 May with:

We have noted with concern these allegations which must be investigated. We have full confidence in the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons .

3.4 US response

A press statement from State Department Spokesperson Morgan Ortagus on 21 May dealt with the alleged chemical attack two days earlier:

Unfortunately, we continue to see signs that the Assad regime may be renewing its use of chemical weapons, including an alleged chlorine attack in northwest Syria on the morning of May 19, 2019. We are still gathering information on this incident, but we repeat our warning that if the Assad regime uses chemical weapons, the United States and our allies will respond quickly and appropriately.

She mentioned a " continuing disinformation campaign " to "create the false narrative that others are to blame for chemical weapons attacks that the Assad regime itself is conducting". The following day Mr James Jeffrey, the State Department's special representative to Syria, testified to the House Foreign Affairs Committee that "So far we cannot confirm [the reports of chemical weapons use] but we're watching it". The New York Times reported this to be a "carefully worded recalibration" of the announcement by Morgan Ortagus the day before, and that American military officials had "expressed surprise over the State Department's strong statement". 4 Comparison of the Engineering Assessment with the published Final Report

A comparison of the Engineering Assessment and the Final Report have been reported in outline form by McIntyre . As Larson has noted , there are indications in the Final Report that whoever drafted it had access to an earlier version of the Engineering Assessment (the released version dated 27 February 2019 is marked Rev 1) and was attempting to rebut it without overtly mentioning it. For instance the Engineering Assessment lists five points supporting the opinion of experts that the crater at location 2 had been created by a the explosion of a mortar round or artillery rocket rather than an impact from a falling object. These points included:

"an (unusually elevated, but possible) fragmentation pattern on upper walls"

"(whilst it was observed that a fire had been created in the corner of the room) black scorching on the crater underside and ceiling."

The Final Report states falsely that a fragmentation pattern, visible in open-source images, was absent:

The FFM analysed the damage on the rooftop terrace and below the crater in order to determine if it had been created by an explosive device. However, this hypothesis is unlikely given the absence of primary and secondary fragmentation characteristic of an explosion that may have created the crater and the damage surrounding it.

This is followed by a paragraph that notes the blackening of the ceiling and attributes it to the fire set in the room. The Final Report's allusion to the possibility of an explosive device, with mention of fragmentation pattern and the setting of a fire in the room appears to be an attempt to explain away the argument made in the Engineering Assessment.

We note that several of the key findings of the Engineering Assessment are based only on examination of the cylinders. For instance the Engineering Assessment reports that the cylinder at Location 2 bears no markings that would be consistent with the frame with fins (lying on the balcony) ever having been attached to it, let alone the markings that would be expected if the frame had been stripped off by impact. The Final Report records that the Syrian government insisted on retaining custody of the cylinders for criminal investigation purposes. Accordingly:

On 4 June, FFM team members tagged and sealed the cylinders from Locations 2 and 4, and documented the procedure.

A useful way to take forward the investigation of the Douma incident would now be for the Syrian government to invite an international team of neutral experts to examine the cylinders, to assess whether the observations support the findings of the Engineering Assessment or the conclusions of the published FFM Final Report, and to publish their findings in a form that allows peer review and reproducibility of results from data. The next step would be a criminal investigation of this incident, focusing on where, how and by whom were the 35 victims seen in images at Location 2 killed.

Posted at 02:37 AM in government , History , Syria , The Military Art , weapons | Permalink

Castellio , 29 May 2019 at 12:05 PM

Thank you for pursuing this issue in depth and with rigour.

Paul McKeigue , 29 May 2019 at 12:05 PM

If SST readers are confused by OPCW's constantly shifting explanations for why the Final Report on the Douma incident excluded the Engineering Assessment, they're not the only ones.

Yesterday OPCW released its official response (dated 21 May) to Russian criticisms (dated 26 April) of the Final Report of the Fact-Finding Mission on the Douma incident. In this response OPCW made, officially and on the record, the same argument as that made by Whitaker's "informed source: that to assess how the cylinders arrived in their positions was outside the mandate of the FFM.

Unfortunately for whoever thought up this defence, it is explicitly contradicted by both the Interim Report (published last July) and the Final Report, which state that the objective of the engineering studies was to evaluate how the cylinders arrived in position.

Peter Hitchens is on the case, and has listed these contradictions and requested an explanation from OPCW.

https://t.co/siF2D4yita

[May 19, 2019] The OPCW, Douma, The Skripals

Notable quotes:
"... The neocon faction in the US is usually (and reasonably) regarded as the motivator behind much of the western aggression in the Middle East. ..."
"... 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. ..."
"... 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 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. ..."
"... 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). ..."
"... 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. ..."
"... 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? ..."
"... 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. ..."
"... 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. ..."
"... 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. ..."
"... The UK were the most vocal about Syria, and desperately tried to drum up support over Skripal, but it all came to nothing much in the end. ..."
"... Theresa May's political career still hangs by a thread, and her "Falklands moment", at best, staved off the inevitable for a few months. A washout in the EU elections, a very real threat from Farage's Brexit party, and rumblings inside her own party, make her position as unstable as ever. ..."
"... In the US, generally speaking, it seems that the Trump admin – or at least whichever interested parties currently have control of the wheels of government – have called time on war in Syria. Instead, they've moved on to projects in Venezuela and North Korea, and even war with Iran. ..."
"... The failure of the Douma false flag to cause the war it was meant to cause, and the vast collection of evidence that suggests it was a false flag, should be spread far and wide. Not just because it's a truth which vindicates the smeared minority in the alternate media. ..."
May 19, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Via 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.

* * *

Back to today...

...and while things have moved on, we're still puzzling over all the same issues.

All these questions stand, and are important, but more important than all of that is the lesson: They tried it before, and just because it didn't work doesn't mean they won't try it again.

Last spring, the Western powers showed they will deploy a false flag if they need too, for domestic or international motives. And they have the motives right now.

The UK were the most vocal about Syria, and desperately tried to drum up support over Skripal, but it all came to nothing much in the end.

Theresa May's political career still hangs by a thread, and her "Falklands moment", at best, staved off the inevitable for a few months. A washout in the EU elections, a very real threat from Farage's Brexit party, and rumblings inside her own party, make her position as unstable as ever.

Britain had the most to gain, of all NATO countries, and that is still true. We don't know what they might do.

This time they might even receive greater support from France this time around – since Macron is facing a revolution at home and would kill (possibly literally) for a nice international distraction.

In the US, generally speaking, it seems that the Trump admin – or at least whichever interested parties currently have control of the wheels of government – have called time on war in Syria. Instead, they've moved on to projects in Venezuela and North Korea, and even war with Iran.

That's not to say Syria is safe, far from it. They are always just one carefully place false-flag away from all-out war. Last year, Mattis (or whoever) decided war with Syria was not an option – that it was too risky or complicated. That might not happen next time.

Clearly, the US hasn't totally seen sense in terms of stoking conflict with Russia – as seen by the decision to pull out of the INF Treaty late last year. And further demonstrated by their attempts to overthrow Russia's ally Nicolas Maduro. Another ripe candidate for a false flag.

The failure of the Douma false flag to cause the war it was meant to cause, and the vast collection of evidence that suggests it was a false flag, should be spread far and wide. Not just because it's a truth which vindicates the smeared minority in the alternate media.

But because recognising what they were trying to do last time , is the best defense when they try it again next time .

[May 14, 2019] Leaked Document Pokes More Holes In Establishment Syria Narrative

Notable quotes:
"... The assessment says more thoroughly and technically what I argued in an article last year , that the physics of the air-dropped cylinder narrative make no sense whatsoever. This is a problem, because the reason we were given for the US, UK and France launching airstrikes on Syrian government targets in April of 2018 was that two cylinders full of poison gas had been dropped from aircraft by the Syrian air force and killed dozens of civilians. ..."
"... Just as interesting as this new report has been the response of the usual establishment Syria narrative managers to it, or rather the lack thereof. NATO narrative management firm Bellingcat , which normally jumps all over these kinds of revelations in an attempt to discredit them, has been maintaining radio silence as of this writing. Its founder, Eliot Higgins, has had nothing to say on the matter other than to retweet a pathetic rebuttal by his mini-me Scott Lucas and take a few childish jabs at me for highlighting this fact. ..."
"... We are being lied to about Syria . Anyone who believes unproven assertions about governments targeted for toppling by the US-centralized empire has failed to learn the lessons of history. The Syrian government had literally nothing to gain strategically from using chemical weapons in Douma, a battle it had already won, and knew full well that doing so would provoke an attack from the empire. Douma was occupied by the Al Qaeda-linked Jaysh Al-Islam, who had at that point nothing to lose and everything to gain by staging a false flag attack in a last-ditch attempt to get NATO powers to function as its air force. ..."
"... If you still believe at this point that the Syrian government dropped poison gas on Douma last year, then I've got some Iraqi WMDs to sell you. ..."
"... Did the OPCW withhold the results of the simulations? Yes. Could the cylinders have broken through the reinforced concrete slabs without being destroyed? No. ..."
"... And not one outlet in the Western MSM raised the slightest question of this. They were all cheering the public towards war. Alex Jones and InfoWars raised questions about the possibility of a false flag, but he was of course painted as a dangerous "conspiracy theorist" for saying so. ..."
"... General Wesley Clark: Wars Were Planned - Seven Countries In Five Years https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9RC1Mepk_Sw (2:12) ..."
"... Remember that Russia called it a false flag soon after and even took residents of Douma to testify to the OPCW that it was indeed a false flag. Everyone at the time said Russia and Assad were lying. ..."
"... Remember that the US & UK at the UN have called for giving EXTENDED power to the OPCW to "assign blame" in such incidents. The OPCW ALREADY DID THAT and it was ALL LIES. As USUAL it is the US & CO who LIE AND MURDER INNOCENTS for their political/geopolitical aims. ..."
May 14, 2019 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Caitlin Johnstone via Medium.com,

"It is hard to overstate the significance of this revelation," tweets former British MP George Galloway of a new report by the Working Group on Syria, Propaganda and Media (WGSPM).

" The war-machine has now been caught red-handed in a staged chemical weapons attack for the purposes of deceiving our democracies into what could have turned into a full-scale war amongst the great-powers."

"An important #Douma #Syria 'Assad chemical weapon attack' development and yet more evidence to suggest the 'attack' was staged, as it's now revealed that @OPCW suppressed expert engineers report that found the cylinders were likely not dropped from the air ," tweets former Scotland Yard detective and counterterrorism intelligence officer Charles Shoebridge.

"The engineering assessment confirms our earlier conclusion," the excellent Moon of Alabama blog writes .

" The whole scene as depicted by 'rebels' and propaganda organs was staged. The more than 34 dead on the scene were murdered elsewhere under unknown circumstances."

An important #Douma #Syria 'Assad chemical weapon attack' development and yet more evidence to suggest the 'attack' was staged, as it's now revealed that @OPCW suppressed expert engineers report that found the cylinders were likely not dropped from the air https://t.co/hZCP2Ujlbk

-- Charles Shoebridge (@ShoebridgeC) May 13, 2019

The report has grabbed the attention of those who've expressed skepticism of establishment Syria narratives because it casts serious doubts on the official story we've been told to believe about an alleged chemical attack in Douma, Syria in April of last year. A document titled "Engineering Assessment of two cylinders observed at the Douma incident" has been leaked to the WGSPM which reveals that an engineering sub-team of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) fact-finding mission in Douma came to conclusions which differ wildly from the OPCW's official findings on the Douma incident, yet we the public were never permitted to see this assessment.

The assessment's findings, which you can locate on pages five through eight of the document , put forward multiple hypothetical scenarios in which two gas cylinders could have wound up in the locations(Location 2 and Location 4) that they were photographed and video recorded as having been found after the alleged attack. The assessment concludes that "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. In each case the alternative hypothesis produced the only plausible explanation for observations at the scene."

The assessment says more thoroughly and technically what I argued in an article last year , that the physics of the air-dropped cylinder narrative make no sense whatsoever. This is a problem, because the reason we were given for the US, UK and France launching airstrikes on Syrian government targets in April of 2018 was that two cylinders full of poison gas had been dropped from aircraft by the Syrian air force and killed dozens of civilians.

The assessment is signed by Ian Henderson, who the WGSPM were able to verify as a longtime OPCW-trained inspection team leader. The OPCW reportedly denied that Henderson was involved in its Douma fact-finding mission, but the WGSPM counters that "This statement is false. The engineering sub-team could not have been carrying out studies in Douma at Locations 2 and 4 unless they had been notified by OPCW to the Syrian National Authority (the body that oversees compliance with the Chemical Weapons Convention) as FFM inspectors: it is unlikely that Henderson arrived on a tourist visa."

So far this is the establishment narrative management machine's only attempt at refuting the latest revelations indicating that the #Douma attack last year was staged. It basically boils down to "They're conspiracy theorists and the official narrative disagrees with them." https://t.co/04iFa24do8

-- Caitlin Johnstone ⏳ (@caitoz) May 13, 2019

Just as interesting as this new report has been the response of the usual establishment Syria narrative managers to it, or rather the lack thereof. NATO narrative management firm Bellingcat , which normally jumps all over these kinds of revelations in an attempt to discredit them, has been maintaining radio silence as of this writing. Its founder, Eliot Higgins, has had nothing to say on the matter other than to retweet a pathetic rebuttal by his mini-me Scott Lucas and take a few childish jabs at me for highlighting this fact.

Scott Lucas' Facebook post on the WGSPM report remains as of this writing the only attempt from the Syria narrative management machine to address it, and it boils down to nothing more than assertions that the report contradicts the official OPCW narrative (duh) and that the WGSPM are conspiracy theorists. Lucas may have thought it a good idea to author this post believing that he had a more substantial argument than he actually had, but it was pointed out shortly after publication that his claim about Henderson refusing to consider other possible scenarios in his assessment is directly contradicted by the words that are in the assessment, and Lucas was forced to make a hasty revision .

There will be other counter-narratives released by the Syria narrative management machine, to be sure, but the fact that this report has been out for the better part of the day with nary a peep from that lot reveals a great deal about the difficulties they're having with this one.

We are being lied to about Syria . Anyone who believes unproven assertions about governments targeted for toppling by the US-centralized empire has failed to learn the lessons of history. The Syrian government had literally nothing to gain strategically from using chemical weapons in Douma, a battle it had already won, and knew full well that doing so would provoke an attack from the empire. Douma was occupied by the Al Qaeda-linked Jaysh Al-Islam, who had at that point nothing to lose and everything to gain by staging a false flag attack in a last-ditch attempt to get NATO powers to function as its air force.

If you still believe at this point that the Syrian government dropped poison gas on Douma last year, then I've got some Iraqi WMDs to sell you.

* * *

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Tunga , 45 minutes ago link

The assessment was generated using photos taken by the OPCW Fact Finding Mission ( FFM) and the use of finite element computer modeling.

There is no reason to accuse the OPCW of lying about the Inspector not being in Douma. He could have produced the report from anywhere that had the computer power and software as well as access to the FFM photos several of which appear in the March 1st 2019 OPCW final report.

Did the OPCW withhold the results of the simulations? Yes. Could the cylinders have broken through the reinforced concrete slabs without being destroyed? No.

The software;

"Abaqus/Explicit is a finite element analysis product that is particularly well-suited to simulate brief transient dynamic events such as consumer electronics drop testing, automotive crashworthiness, and ballistic impact. The ability of Abaqus/Explicit to effectively handle severely nonlinear behavior such as contact makes it very attractive for the simulation of many quasi-static events, such as rolling of hot metal and slow crushing of energy absorbing devices. Abaqus/Explicit is designed for production environments, so ease of use, reliability, and efficiency are key ingredients in its architecture. Abaqus/Explicit is supported within the Abaqus/CAE modeling environment for all common pre- and postprocessing needs."

https://www.3ds.com/products-services/simulia/products/abaqus/abaqusexplicit/

Dassault Systems.

vienna_proxy , 1 hour ago link

obama and hillary still need to be executed for creating isis and the moderate rebel terrorists

Reaper , 1 hour ago link

There are no punishments for false flagers.

Dr. Acula , 1 hour ago link

Reminder that Mossad did 9/11 and tried to blow up the Mexican Congress and blamed Muslims.

Since they control the pedophiles in US's government, it makes sense that US would lie about the Syria gassings. Trump is part of this with his crazy "gas attack animal Assad" tweets.

Velocitor , 1 hour ago link

And not one outlet in the Western MSM raised the slightest question of this. They were all cheering the public towards war. Alex Jones and InfoWars raised questions about the possibility of a false flag, but he was of course painted as a dangerous "conspiracy theorist" for saying so.

And now he's being deplatformed, so we won't have any pesky voices of reason raising questions, the next time.

prymythirdeye , 1 hour ago link

EVERYTHING IS FAKE, STAGED FRAUD. We are being told more lies than truths these days.

Oliver Klozoff , 1 hour ago link

Everything about obama was faked, staged, phony. That's why all the dimms love him. Strange there's no comic book figure of him for hollyjewood to make movies of.

beemasters , 1 hour ago link

Everything about US government is faked. staged, phony. FIFY.

Goldilocks , 1 hour ago link

General Wesley Clark: Wars Were Planned - Seven Countries In Five Years https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9RC1Mepk_Sw (2:12)

beemasters , 1 hour ago link

It's becoming too easy. Precedents after precedents have made events like this unusual if not staged, a false flag or hoax.

BGO , 2 hours ago link

A couple of women have for years been exposing the *** stooge fraud in Syria. I won't sully their good names by posting them here, but I will say that if the fraud committed in Syria is a revelation to anyone in the US, the same should wrap their lips around the business end of a 12 gauge and blow.

Gonzogal , 2 hours ago link

Remember that Russia called it a false flag soon after and even took residents of Douma to testify to the OPCW that it was indeed a false flag. Everyone at the time said Russia and Assad were lying.

Remember that the US & UK at the UN have called for giving EXTENDED power to the OPCW to "assign blame" in such incidents. The OPCW ALREADY DID THAT and it was ALL LIES. As USUAL it is the US & CO who LIE AND MURDER INNOCENTS for their political/geopolitical aims.

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/431595-opcw-chemical-syria-blame/

https://sputniknews.com/analysis/201806281065865144-ex-uk-envoy-syria-opcw-nato/

https://sputniknews.com/analysis/201804111063421210-usa-syria-un-response-analysis/

kimsarah , 2 hours ago link

All the more reason to be skeptical about Iranian "attacks" on Saudi oil ships.

Kafir Goyim , 2 hours ago link

I assume that's why this leak is happening now. I think it's too little, too late, but I applaud the effort.

The widespread knowledge by the populace of our owners contempt for the truth and usage of false flags as standard procedure to provide cover for their wars, is about the only thing, at this point, that will derail a war with Iran caused by an "Iranian attack on a tanker".

Gonzogal , 2 hours ago link

The widespread knowledge by the populace of our owners contempt for the truth and usage of false flags as standard procedure to provide cover for their wars, is about the only thing, at this point, that will derail a war with Iran caused by an "Iranian attack on a tanker".

Unfortunately I would not bet on that. Since when did the US regime or any other "Western Partners" listen to reason or their citizens....PLUS I have NOT seen any Americans protesting against their regimes actions in the world and the silence from them will once again be deafening in the attempts to start a war with Iran!

Kafir Goyim , 2 hours ago link

That was the beauty of a draft. It made wars so much more personal for the average person. All volunteer military allows the populace to tune out completely from any foreign adventures their owners may be engaged in.

Gonzogal , 1 hour ago link

That is a VERY sad commentary on the state of America, if the ONLY thing that will make Americans protest against their regimes wars world-wide is if it re-institutes the draft!

BarnacleBill , 2 hours ago link

Caitlin Johnstone is worth her weight in gold.

chunga , 2 hours ago link

Being skeptical going forward is not the result of any "derangement syndrome". Its the result of things like this.

Kafir Goyim , 2 hours ago link

Since these things occurred for that last 20 years, (55 years-Tonkin) and from more than one country, "derangement syndrome" would indeed be an incorrect reason to be skeptical. What is disappointing to non TDS sufferers is that the last two years matched the previous 18.

chunga , 2 hours ago link

The pattern is well established so there is no excuse for repeating the same mistakes and right now the pipeline is full of the same mistakes.

MRob , 49 minutes ago link

20 years? 55 years??!

Pfft....

Lets start with the Spanish American war of 1898...

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

(Corbett Report)

HedgeJunkie , 38 minutes ago link

First thing I thought of...

https://www.thoughtco.com/spanish-american-war-uss-maine-explodes-2361193

teharr , 2 hours ago link

No way! A false flag? CONSPIRACY!!!!!!!

Disclosure is slow for those that suspected a false flag the minute it happened. Waking up the sheep is so tedious.

It is all ******** folks, all of it.

Captain Nemo de Erehwon , 2 hours ago link

So who can sue OPCW in the ICCJ for war crimes in terms of knowingly promoting false narratives that lead to massive losses of life? Will at least twitter ban related accounts for false fear-mongering endangering public safety? These people are deeply corrupt. But then information has started to leak out.

Badsamm , 2 hours ago link

Time to check those Saudi tankers that were "attacked".

3nd7ime8oogie , 2 hours ago link

Commercial chlorine cylinders, cheap. But most people couldn't tell the difference between a nerve agent (Sarin/VX), a simple WWI burn agent (Chlorine) & a spicey curry. The feels of supposed invisible clouds choking out children overwhems any rational analysis thus carring the narrative.

Wahooo , 2 hours ago link

Trump's a war criminal and needs to be tried.

insanelysane , 1 hour ago link

By staying out of wars??? Ahhh, Peace is War!

MR166 , 2 hours ago link

Trump threw a giant monkey wrench into the Deep State operations by getting elected. Imagine where we would be today if Killary got elected.

44magnum , 2 hours ago link

Same ******* place or worse. Remember that for the next vote and the next and the next,etc. Because it will always be same ******* place or worse.

Algo Rhythm , 2 hours ago link

Color me shocked.... just kiddin'

We knew this was BS all along and government does nothing but kill humanity.

Kreator , 2 hours ago link

Does this mean White Helmets will have to return Oscar for their heartbreaking story where they pull "dead" kids from ruble, and then couple of months later they pull same kids that "died" again from ruble?

beemasters , 1 hour ago link

Only if the White House apologizes to Syrians for "mistaking" fiction for fact. If not, the Oscar stays.

haruspicio , 2 hours ago link

People of America, your government is LYING TO YOU. Pretty much on every issue. Do not believe anything you read, see or hear, but ask searching questions about how this stuff is down, who benefits etc etc

Why on earth would Assad, every time he is gaining ground and winning, gas people. It doesn't;t make any sense at all. Who benefits? Why Isis, al Qaeda and the terrorists who are supported by your government. Your taxes go to support the folks that bombed the WTC on 9/11.

Chupacabra-322 , 2 hours ago link

Who benefits?

IsRaHell.

SybilDefense , 2 hours ago link

Not sure why it's "acceptable" that many of our "US" leaders are dual passport/citizen "them".

Wonder what one day would look like if politicians were forced to speak the truth?

Jesus must be packing his bags, as we are surely in need of another visit.

Goldilocks , 2 hours ago link

Government and MSM complicity regarding 9/11, set a dangerous precedent...

"What the eyes see and the ears hear, the mind believes" - Harry Houdini

07 - The Key
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rml2TL5N8ds (45:05)
CollinAlexander - May 29, 2012

The key to solving 9/11 is something called a "key". Understanding video compositing technology, both its capabilities AND limitations, proves no planes, and therefore proves demolition.

WhiteOakQueen , 1 hour ago link

Before 9/11 Oklahoma City Bombing watch A Noble Lie on Amazon Prime

[Apr 12, 2019] Douma investigation> discredits OPCW as a source of impartial investigation and undermine it as an international institution fit to be entrusted with maintaining the prohibition of chemical weapons by timhayward

Notable quotes:
"... The apparent removal of the Team Leader, the exclusion of evidence that the hospital dousing scene was staged, the delay in producing this anonymous report and the refusal to allow a briefing by the FFM team raise concerns that criminal activities – the staging of a chemical attack using the bodies of civilians – have been covered up. In most jurisdictions, the duty to disclose such a cover-up would override the confidentiality agreements that OPCW employees are required to sign. ..."
"... This report discredits OPCW as a source of impartial investigation and undermines it as an international institution that is fit to be entrusted with maintaining the prohibition of chemical weapons, let alone with the remit to "identify the perpetrators of the use of chemical weapons" assigned by a resolution of the Conference of States Parties in June 2018. ..."
Apr 12, 2019 | timhayward.wordpress.com

Detailed examination of the final report from the OPCW's Fact-Finding Mission on the alleged chemical attack in Douma on 7 April 2018.

The resultant Briefing Note – by Paul McKeigue, David Miller, and Piers Robinson – exposes deep flaws in the anonymously authored report. These discredit OPCW as a source of impartial investigation and undermine it as an international institution fit to be entrusted with maintaining the prohibition of chemical weapons. Paul McKeigue, David Miller, Piers Robinson

Members of Working Group on Syria, Propaganda and Media

Summary

This briefing note reviews the Final Report of the OPCW Fact-Finding Mission on the alleged chemical attack in Douma on 7 April 2018, released on 1 March 2019. We focus on the methods and the conduct of the investigation.

Read the full report

[Apr 12, 2019] Skripal, the Russkies and Bellingcat

The fact that Glenn Greenwald proved to be a despicable pressitute cast a long shadow of Snowden and Assange.
Notable quotes:
"... Not mentioned by any of the major news media is the fact that Bellingcat is funded by the National Endowment for Democracy (sic), renowned for its interference in foreign elections, funding terrorists and overthrowing governments the US doesn't approve of. ..."
Sep 27, 2018 | investigatingimperialism.wordpress.com
September 27, 2018 September 27, 2018 27 September 2018 -- Investigating Imperialism

I smell a rat!

A quick comment about the two Russian alleged assassins, exposed, we are told by the 'investigative' Website, Bellingcat. Not mentioned by any of the major news media is the fact that Bellingcat is funded by the National Endowment for Democracy (sic), renowned for its interference in foreign elections, funding terrorists and overthrowing governments the US doesn't approve of.

Media Lens picked up on this awhile back in reference to another Western financed outfit, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), funded by the UK Foreign Office. I've also expanded this by quoting from Media Lens' other article that deals with Western-funded disinfo, ' Douma: Part 1 – Deception In Plain Sight':

Liberal corporate journalists and politicians have been impressed by the fact that SOHR and White Helmets claims have been supported by ostensibly forensic analysis supplied by the Bellingcat website, which publishes 'citizen journalist' investigations. As we noted in a recent alert, Bellingcat is funded by the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), which is funded by the US government and is 'a notorious vehicle for US soft power'. – ' The Syrian Observatory – Funded By The Foreign Office ', Media Lens, June 4 2018

It's worth quoting more of the Media Lens article as it exposes the nature of Western so-called lefties and their attachment to Western (funded) propaganda outfits:

In the New Statesman, Paul Mason offered a typically nonsensical argument, linking to the anti-Assad website, Bellingcat:

'Despite the availability of public sources showing it is likely that a regime Mi-8 helicopter dropped a gas container onto a specific building, there are well-meaning people prepared to share the opinion that this was a "false flag", staged by jihadis, to pull the West into the war. The fact that so many people are prepared to clutch at false flag theories is, for Western democracies, a sign of how effective Vladimir Putin's global strategy has been.'

Thus, echoing Freedland's reference to 'denialists and conspiracists', sceptics can only be idiot victims of Putin's propaganda. US media analyst Adam Johnson of FAIR accurately described Mason's piece as a 'mess', adding :

'I love this thing where nominal leftists run the propaganda ball for bombing a country 99 yards then stop at the one yard and insist they don't support scoring goals, that they in fact oppose war.'

Surprisingly, the Bellingcat website, which publishes the findings of 'citizen journalist' investigations, appears to be taken seriously by some very high-profile progressives.

In the Independent, Green Party leader Caroline Lucas also mentioned the Syrian army 'Mi-8' helicopters. Why? Because she had read the same Bellingcat blog as Mason, to which she linked:

'From the evidence we've seen so far it appears that the latest chemical attack was likely by Mi-8 helicopters, probably from the forces of Syria's murderous President Assad.'

On Democracy Now!, journalist Glenn Greenwald said of Douma:

'I think that it's -- the evidence is quite overwhelming that the perpetrators of this chemical weapons attack, as well as previous ones, is the Assad government '

This was an astonishing comment. After receiving fierce challenges (not from us), Greenwald partially retracted, tweeting :

'It's live TV. Something [sic – sometimes] you say things less than ideally. I think the most likely perpetrator of this attack is Syrian Govt.'

We wrote to Greenwald asking what had persuaded him of Assad's 'likely' responsibility for Douma. (Twitter, April 10, direct message)

The first piece of evidence he sent us (April 12) was the Bellingcat blog mentioning Syrian government helicopters cited by Mason and Lucas. Greenwald also sent us a report from Reuters, as well as a piece from 2017, obviously prior to the alleged Douma event.

This was thin evidence indeed for the claim made. In our discussion with him, Greenwald then completely retracted his claim (Twitter, April 12, direct message) that there was evidence of Syrian government involvement in the alleged attack. [My emph. WB] – ' Douma: Part 1 – Deception In Plain Sight'

[Mar 04, 2019] Believe or not to believe -- this is the question

Mar 04, 2019 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

Aule Valar March 1, 2019 at 11:34 pm

OPCW released it's report on Douma 2018: https://www.opcw.org/sites/default/files/documents/2019/03/s-1731-2019%28e%29.pdf

Tl;dr: two cylinders were likely dropped from up high and probably released chlorine which poisoned an unknown number of people.

Moscow Exile March 1, 2019 at 11:49 pm
Remarkably little damage suffered by such cylinders dropped from on high.

Likewise th Byk missile, which was also remarkably found near intact where the aeroplane it allegedly downed eventually crashed and broke up.

Mark Chapman March 2, 2019 at 9:40 am

"dropped from up high" – gosh, the technical terminology scientists use makes their reports difficult to follow. Naturally only Assad possessed the capability to drop something from up high, so it must have been him.

I also note the report says some guy who was not from the hospital ran in shouting "Chemical! Chemical!", whereupon others started grabbing people and washing them, and that the alleged victims did not present as victims of a chemical attack.

But I daresay the press will conclude this is irrefutable proof that a chemical attack occurred in Douma and that Assad – backed by the Russians – was responsible.

Patient Observer March 2, 2019 at 11:19 am
"dropped from up high" is in the 1 to 2 meter range, I would say.

[Sep 13, 2018] Heather Nauert (Spokesperson for the United States Department of State): The United States and the international community continue to support the heroic work of White Helmets

Sep 13, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

james , Sep 13, 2018 12:04:56 AM | link

@47 den lille abe / 49 pft.... i mentioned it on the syrian thread yesterday... here is my comment from that thread...

"yer local scam news from the usa daily press briefing.. aside from acknowledging the horrific nature of 9-11 inflicted on the usa, there is of course no mention of the horrors that it inflicted on many many more in the countries outside of the usa, thanks the usa's phony war on terrorism..but of course, how can you have a war on terrorism, when you are the terrorism globally? more fun stuff at the link, if you like being propagandized..

https://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/dpb/2018/09/285807.htm

from heather nauert - "Next, and this is also related to Syria, I'd like to highlight this: The Assad regime and Russia continue to falsely accuse the White Helmets through a massive disinformation campaign, leaving its volunteers at significant risk. Many of you are familiar with the good work that the White Helmets has – that they have done and that they continue to do. The White Helmets are a humanitarian organization that has saved thousands of lives and continues to save civilian lives after bombardments by Russian and regime military forces. The United States and the international community continue to support their heroic work."

ben , Sep 13, 2018 1:29:43 AM | link

Censorship in the USA from Black Agenda Report:

https://blackagendareport.com/first-they-came-alex-jones-then-rt-and-syrian-tv

"Russian and Syrian news services in the US have been censored, but you can still get streaming jihadist propaganda from al Qaeda-controlled Idlib Province."

[Aug 25, 2018] The White Helmets are saddling up for another ride

Aug 25, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Looks like now they do not even care if this will be exposed as false flag operation.

"The United States has warned Russia that it would be ready to strike Syria again if President Bashar Assad and his government use chemical weapons in the country, the Bloomberg news agency said on Friday citing own sources.

According to the agency's sources, the warning was conveyed by National Security Adviser John Bolton to his Russian counterpart, Nikolai Patrushev, during their Thursday's meeting in Geneva, Switzerland.

The agency says that Washington "has information that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad may use chemical weapons as he seeks to recapture one of the country's last rebel-held areas" – in the northwestern Syrian province of Idlib.

During the talks with Patrushev, Bolton said the United States would respond with s tronger military action that it has used in Syria in the past – in 2017 and 2018." Bloomberg and AMN

*********

"Militants of Hay'at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), aided by British intelligence, are preparing to stage a chemical attack in northern Syria that will be used as a pretext for a new missile strike by the U.S., the UK and France on facilities of the Damascus government, Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov announced on August 25.

"According to the information confirmed simultaneously by several independent sources, the active terrorist grouping Hayat Tahrir al-Sham is plotting a new provocation with the alleged use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government forces against civilians in the Idlib province A special group of terrorists who have been trained by specialists of the UK private military company Olive to handle chemical warfare agents has also arrived in the area of Jisr ash-Shughur ," Konashenkov said, according to the Russian news agency TASS.

Konashenkov revealed that the U.S. is already preparing for the new missile strike. According to the statment, the US Navy's destroyer Sullivans with 56 cruise missiles on board arrived in the Persian Gulf several days ago while a B-1B strategic bomber of the US Air Force armed with AGM-158 JASSM air-to-surface missiles was redeployed to the al-Udeid air base in Qatar.

"The actions by Western countries contrary to public statements are aimed at another dramatic escalation of the situation in the Middle East and at disrupting the peace process on the territory of Syria," Konashenkov warned.

Earlier this week, the U.S., the UK and Franc released a joint statement , in which they condemned the alleged use of chemical weapons by the Damascus government. The three countries vowed to "respond appropriately to any further use of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime."" SF & Russian MoD

---------------

Bolton, Pompeo and the neocons have made it clear that they at least have not abandoned Regime Change in Syria as their objective. Whether or not Mattis and Votel are fully on board with this is unclear to me. They may well be playing some separate game of their own involving a madcap desire to maintain a US dominated zone in Syria east of the Euphrates River. Trump's hand is not visible in this for me. Power appears to have fractured in Washington with regard to ME policy

The Regime Changers seem to believe they will have another bite at the apple during the Idlib liberation campaign when a White Helmet style "gas attack" can be staged and then used to obtain Trump's acquiescence in a sizable set of attacks against Syrian forces this time as well as facilities.

The Israelis seem to be out of the game on this one having made a deal with Russia and Syria over stability on the Golan front line.

Well, good for them. pl

https://www.almasdarnews.com/article/us-warns-russia-of-new-strike-on-syria-if-assad-uses-chemical-weapons-bloomberg/

https://southfront.org/u-s-prepares-new-strikes-on-government-facilities-in-syria-russian-military/

https://www.almasdarnews.com/article/russia-accuses-us-britain-france-of-preparing-to-carry-out-new-strikes-against-syrian-govt/

https://www.almasdarnews.com/article/breaking-jihadists-preparing-chemical-weapons-provocation-in-idlib-russian-mod/

Posted at 10:34 AM in As The Borg Turns , Borg Wars , Syria | Permalink

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[Aug 07, 2018] More Lies About the White Helmets by Philip Giraldi

Notable quotes:
"... Is resettling a terrorist front group in the West a good idea? ..."
"... The White Helmets ..."
"... The Washington Post ..."
"... Syria conflict: White Helmets evacuated by Israel. ..."
"... The BBC story could have been written by the White Helmets themselves or by their press department. Or alternatively by the Israeli Foreign Ministry. First of all, the Israelis do not do humanitarian gestures. They helped bail out the White Helmets at the request of the U.S. because capture by the Syrians would have produced embarrassing revelations about how the group was funded and what its affiliation with terrorists was all about. And Israel's denial of involvement in Syria is nonsense, unless one considers demonstrated collaboration with the terrorist groups punctuated by nearly weekly bombing and missile attacks to be non-involvement. ..."
"... The British too are into the deception up to their eyeballs. The comment by Hunt and Mordaunt is complete fabrication regarding what the White Helmets represent. The same goes for the BBC account of how the group developed, which comes directly from the White Helmet's own propaganda division as amplified by Hollywood and the U.S. and U.K. governments. ..."
"... The White Helmets travel to bombing sites with their film crews trailing behind them. Once at the sites, with no independent observers, they are able to arrange or even stage what is filmed to conform to their selected narrative which consistently promotes tales of government atrocities against civilians to encourage outside military intervention in Syria and bring about regime change in Damascus. The White Helmets were, for example, the propagators of the totally false but propagandistically effective claims regarding the government use of so-called "barrel bombs" against civilians. ..."
"... Peter Ford, British Ambassador in Damascus from 2003-2006, recently described the group in an audio interview saying, "The White Helmets are jihadi auxiliaries. They are not, as claimed by themselves and by their supporters simple rescuers. They are not volunteers. They are paid professionals of disinformation." ..."
"... All their activities are directed at mobilizing Western opinion behind the jihadis with whom they associate. They co-locate their centers with the Al-Qaeda organization known as Al-Nusra and with other militant groups such as Jaish al-Islam. They have in the past been shown associating with and waving the flags of ISIS." ..."
"... The group is currently largely funded by a number of non-government organizations (NGOs) as well as governments, including the United States, Britain and some European Union member states. The U.S. has directly provided $23 million through the USAID (US Agency for International Development) as of 2016 and almost certainly considerably more indirectly. ..."
"... Perhaps the most serious charge against the White Helmets consists of the evidence that they actively participated in the atrocities , to include torture and murder, carried out by their al-Nusra hosts. There have been numerous photos of the White Helmets operating directly with armed terrorists and also celebrating over the bodies of execution victims and murdered Iraqi soldiers. The group's jihadi associates regard the White Helmets as fellow "mujahideen" and "soldiers of the revolution." ..."
"... The White Helmets were and are part and parcel of the attempt to overthrow a legitimate government and install a regime friendly to western, American and Israeli interests. For Israel in particular the ongoing chaos in Syria was and is part of its plan for dividing all of its neighbors into warring ethnicities and sects, making them less viable as threats to the Jewish state. ..."
Aug 07, 2018 | www.unz.com

Is resettling a terrorist front group in the West a good idea?

When is a terrorist group not a terrorist group? Apparently the answer is that it ceases to be terrorist when it terrorizes someone who is an enemy of the United States. The most prominent recent example is the Mujaheddin e Khalq (MEK), a murderous Iranian Marxist cult which assassinated five Americans in the 1970s as part of its campaign against the Shah's government. It was removed from the State Department terrorist list in 2012 by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton after it had promised not to kill any more Americans but really because it had bought the support of prominent politicians to include Elaine Chao, Rudy Giuliani, Newt Gingrich, and John Bolton. It also had the behind the scenes endorsement of both the Israeli Mossad and CIA, both of whom have been using it in their operations to kill Iranians and damage the country's infrastructure. Someone high up in the federal government, perhaps Hillary or even President Obama himself, must have decided that terrorists who kill only Iranians deserve a get out of jail free card from the State Department.

There are other examples of cynical doublespeak from the Syrian conflict, including labeling rebels against the Damascus government "freedom fighters" when in reality they were as often as not allied with the al-Qaeda affiliated group Al-Nusra or even with ISIS. Frequently they received training and weapons from Washington only to turn around and either join Al-Nusra and ISIS as volunteers or surrender their weapons to them.

But perhaps there is no bigger fraud making the rounds than the so-called White Helmets. The recent media coverage derives from the documentary The White Helmets , which was produced by the group itself and tells a very convincing tale promoted as "the story of real-life heroes and impossible hope." It is a very impressive piece of propaganda, so much so that it has won numerous awards including the Oscar for Best Documentary Short last year and the White Helmets themselves were nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. More to the point, however, is the undeniable fact that the documentary has helped shape the public understanding of what is going on in Syria, describing the government in Damascus in purely negative terms.

The fawning Hollywood and Congressional depictions of the group go something like this: "the White Helmets are an 'heroic' impartial non-government humanitarian volunteer group that engages in 'first response' emergency rescue and medical treatment for all those who have been impacted by the fighting in Syria. The Syrian government hates the group because it assists victims of the fighting who are either rebels or living in rebel held areas. Recently, with the Syrian Army closing in on the last White Helmet affiliates still operating in the country, the Israeli government, assisted by the United States, staged an emergency humanitarian evacuation of the group's members and their families to Israel and then on to Jordan."

Virtually all the mainstream media coverage of the White Helmets is bogus, but by far the most ridiculous account of the Exodus from Syria came from the BBC. For those who are not familiar with it, the BBC, which once upon a time had a reputation for journalistic integrity, has become one of the worst pro-government propaganda shills of all time. Reading its articles is even worse that having a similar go at The Washington Post , which is the prime newspaper exemplar of fake news and phony journalism pretending to be a respectable news source in the United States. Let's face it, Donald Trump has a point. Nearly all of the mainstream media lies persistently these days but some sources are worse than others. People complain about Fox, and rightly so, but CNN is the absolute pits when it comes to slanting its coverage, as is MSNBC.

BBC's article is entitled Syria conflict: White Helmets evacuated by Israel. It makes the following statements, many coming directly from Israeli official sources, regarding the White Helmets, its activities and the group's relationship to some governments, to include Britain:

"The IDF said they had 'completed a humanitarian effort to rescue members of a Syrian civil organization and their families', saying there was an 'immediate threat to their lives.' The transfer of the displaced Syrians through Israel was an exceptional humanitarian gesture." "Although Israel is not directly involved in the Syria conflict, the two countries have been in a state of war for decades. Despite the intervention, the IDF said that 'Israel continues to maintain a non-intervention policy regarding the Syrian conflict.'" "A statement from Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt and International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt said: 'White Helmets have been the target of attacks and, due to their high profile, we judged that, in these particular circumstances, the volunteers required immediate protection. We pay tribute to the brave and selfless work that White Helmet volunteers have done to save Syrians on all sides of the conflict.'" "Their official name is the Syrian Civil Defense and it began in early 2013 as an organization of volunteers from all walks of life, including electricians and builders. Its main task soon became to rescue civilians in war zones in the immediate aftermath of air strikes, and it says its volunteers have saved the lives of more than 100,000 people during the civil war."

The BBC story could have been written by the White Helmets themselves or by their press department. Or alternatively by the Israeli Foreign Ministry. First of all, the Israelis do not do humanitarian gestures. They helped bail out the White Helmets at the request of the U.S. because capture by the Syrians would have produced embarrassing revelations about how the group was funded and what its affiliation with terrorists was all about. And Israel's denial of involvement in Syria is nonsense, unless one considers demonstrated collaboration with the terrorist groups punctuated by nearly weekly bombing and missile attacks to be non-involvement.

The British too are into the deception up to their eyeballs. The comment by Hunt and Mordaunt is complete fabrication regarding what the White Helmets represent. The same goes for the BBC account of how the group developed, which comes directly from the White Helmet's own propaganda division as amplified by Hollywood and the U.S. and U.K. governments.

Just as important as what is said about the White Helmets' activities is the exclusion of a great deal of credible negative reporting on the group. The carefully edited scenes of heroism under fire that have been filmed and released worldwide conceal the White Helmets' relationship with the al-Qaeda affiliated group Jabhat al-Nusra and its participation in the torture and execution of "rebel" opponents. Indeed, the White Helmets only operate in rebel held territory, which enables them to shape the narrative both regarding who they are and what is occurring on the ground.

Exploiting their access to the western media, the White Helmets thereby de facto became a major source of "eyewitness" news regarding what was going on in those many parts of Syria where European and American journalists were quite rightly afraid to go. It was all part of a broader largely successful "rebel" effort to manufacture fake news that depicts the Damascus government as engaging in war crimes directed against civilians, an effort that led to several attacks on government forces and facilities by the U.S. military.

The White Helmets travel to bombing sites with their film crews trailing behind them. Once at the sites, with no independent observers, they are able to arrange or even stage what is filmed to conform to their selected narrative which consistently promotes tales of government atrocities against civilians to encourage outside military intervention in Syria and bring about regime change in Damascus. The White Helmets were, for example, the propagators of the totally false but propagandistically effective claims regarding the government use of so-called "barrel bombs" against civilians.

Peter Ford, British Ambassador in Damascus from 2003-2006, recently described the group in an audio interview saying, "The White Helmets are jihadi auxiliaries. They are not, as claimed by themselves and by their supporters simple rescuers. They are not volunteers. They are paid professionals of disinformation." He noted particularly the large size of the organization's "press department", saying, "This gives us an idea what the priority is for this very dubious organization. All their activities are directed at mobilizing Western opinion behind the jihadis with whom they associate. They co-locate their centers with the Al-Qaeda organization known as Al-Nusra and with other militant groups such as Jaish al-Islam. They have in the past been shown associating with and waving the flags of ISIS."

The group is currently largely funded by a number of non-government organizations (NGOs) as well as governments, including the United States, Britain and some European Union member states. The U.S. has directly provided $23 million through the USAID (US Agency for International Development) as of 2016 and almost certainly considerably more indirectly. Max Blumenthal has explored in some detail the various funding resources and relationships that the organization draws on, mostly in Europe and the United States.

Perhaps the most serious charge against the White Helmets consists of the evidence that they actively participated in the atrocities , to include torture and murder, carried out by their al-Nusra hosts. There have been numerous photos of the White Helmets operating directly with armed terrorists and also celebrating over the bodies of execution victims and murdered Iraqi soldiers. The group's jihadi associates regard the White Helmets as fellow "mujahideen" and "soldiers of the revolution."

So Israel's celebrated rescue of the White Helmets was little more than a theatrical performance intended to perpetuate the myth that the al-Assad government was thwarted in an attempt to capture and possibly kill an honorable non-partisan group engaged in humanitarian relief for those caught up in a bloody conflict seeking to oust a ruthless dictator. The reality is quite different. The White Helmets were and are part and parcel of the attempt to overthrow a legitimate government and install a regime friendly to western, American and Israeli interests. For Israel in particular the ongoing chaos in Syria was and is part of its plan for dividing all of its neighbors into warring ethnicities and sects, making them less viable as threats to the Jewish state.

The 800 White Helmets rescued reportedly will be resettled in the U.S., Britain and Germany. One hopes those coming to America can end up in Los Angeles, where they would presumably mingle with Hollywood big shots and the usual snowflakes while working on their next documentary. As some of them are most certainly radical Jihadists, it will be interesting to observe exactly how that will play out.

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is www.councilforthenationalinterest.org, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is inform@cnionline.org.

[Jul 23, 2018] A link to an article on how Western NGOs and terrorist groups hire Syrian refugees as actors in their videos through social media sites

Jul 23, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Jen , Jul 22, 2018 6:29:55 PM | 21

Basil @ 11:

Thanks for posting those links. I just had a look at Vanessa Beeley's blog and found a link to an article on how Western NGOs and terrorist groups hire Syrian refugees as actors in their videos through social media sites (in particular social media sites that advertise jobs).

https://en.insidesyriamc.com/2018/07/12/breaking-syrian-opposition-and-western-ngos-hire-actors-for-chemical-weapons-provocation/

Unfortunately (and understandably perhaps, given the risk that might be involved) the people at Inside Syria Media Center did not go far enough in their investigation to find out where the money to pay the actors in these "documentaries" comes from.

[Jul 23, 2018] Christianity was formed after Jesus was executed to protect the money lenders as a protest against debt slavery

Notable quotes:
"... You don't need to "evacuate" aid workers & paramedics, because they have nothing to offer, nothing to fear and want to stay and help people. You DO evacuate special forces & trained proxies. Because you spent money putting them there and the last thing you want is them getting caught or killed. ..."
"... So this is basically a brilliant way of getting hundreds of key ISIS figures our of Syria and resettled into Western countries. Just tidy them up and give them a white helmet. Do these sound like White Helmets to you? ..."
"... Who cares what actually happens to the real White Helmets, the West certainly don't. Especially as the real White Helmets and their families were mainly up in the north, Idlib, hundreds of miles from the Israeli border with no way of getting there. This is a sham. The key ISIS operatives are getting out via Israel while the ones that don't matter are on buses to Idlib, currently blocked as they try to pass through Iranian controlled territory. ..."
Jul 23, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

White Helmets are connected to Mo$$ad and MI6

adam gadahn , Jul 22, 2018 3:16:00 PM | 4
White Helmets "Rescued" By Israel Via Golan Heights In Overnight Operation

why?

You don't need to "evacuate" aid workers & paramedics, because they have nothing to offer, nothing to fear and want to stay and help people. You DO evacuate special forces & trained proxies. Because you spent money putting them there and the last thing you want is them getting caught or killed.

So this is basically a brilliant way of getting hundreds of key ISIS figures our of Syria and resettled into Western countries. Just tidy them up and give them a white helmet. Do these sound like White Helmets to you?

Maadeh Nassar "The Commander of the 'Golan Knights Brigade", Ahmad Al-Nuhas Commander of the "Brigade of the Sword of the Levant", Alaa Halaki "Commander of the Ababel army" and Abu Ratib Nassar, leader of the 'Golan Knights Brigade" escape to Israelearly this morning.

No, me neither.

Who cares what actually happens to the real White Helmets, the West certainly don't. Especially as the real White Helmets and their families were mainly up in the north, Idlib, hundreds of miles from the Israeli border with no way of getting there. This is a sham. The key ISIS operatives are getting out via Israel while the ones that don't matter are on buses to Idlib, currently blocked as they try to pass through Iranian controlled territory.

as for the cia,mi6 mossad sas white helmets they put out a statement thanking george clooney and asking for the return of the oscar lost somewhere in the syriana

adam gadahn , Jul 22, 2018 3:24:56 PM | 5

White Helmets are Mo$$ad and MI6. A branch of AlQaeda terrorists. The one we were told did 9/11(LOL!). 800 members and their families rescued and will go to germany,Canada, France and Britain. Possible US too.

the rescue mission This shows you clearly who was behind the war in Syria. through idf heliborne operations of ISIS leaders, especially the foreign ones. Netanyahu said that TRUMP and Trudeau asked him to evacuate them.


lol lol
into talmud infinity
my life already

[Jul 22, 2018] Israel helping move 800 White Helmets out of Syria via Jordan report -- RT World News

Notable quotes:
"... "members of a Syrian civil organization and their families" ..."
"... "additional European countries." ..."
"... "due to an immediate threat to their lives," ..."
"... "an exceptional humanitarian gesture." ..."
"... "humanitarian aid to civilians, women and children" ..."
"... "will not accept any Syrian refugee to our territory." ..."
"... "political solution." ..."
"... If you like this story, share it with a friend! ..."
Jul 22, 2018 | www.rt.com

Some 800 members of the controversial Western-backed White Helmets will be brought to Jordan through Israel to be reportedly resettled later in the UK, Canada, and Germany. The UN is overseeing the exodus. Hundreds of the self-described aid workers, who operate exclusively in rebel-held areas, have crossed into Israel from southwestern Syria overnight on Sunday, German tabloid Bild reported, citing its own correspondents in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.

Evacuation of white helmets plus families still ongoing here at syrian israeli border. Plan is to drive asap to jordan. @BILD pic.twitter.com/KcBOdduM2t

-- Paul Ronzheimer (@ronzheimer) July 22, 2018

The White Helmets' passage has been facilitated by Israel, according to Bild, which reports they have been transferred through an Israeli military base. The evacuation kicked off at 9:30 pm local time on Saturday and was expected to continue into the night. Several roads were put on lockdown by the army and police as part of preparations for the exodus.

On Sunday morning, the IDF's Twitter account confirmed that Israeli forces had evacuated "members of a Syrian civil organization and their families" at the request of the US and "additional European countries." In a number of subsequent tweets, the military said that some "civilians" were rescued from southern Syria "due to an immediate threat to their lives," and because Israel wanted to make "an exceptional humanitarian gesture."

Following an Israeli Government directive and at the request of the United States and additional European countries, the IDF recently completed a humanitarian effort to rescue members of a Syrian civil organization and their families

-- IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) July 22, 2018

The civilians were subsequently transferred to a neighboring country. Israel continues to maintain a non-intervention policy regarding the Syrian conflict and continues to hold the Syrian regime accountable for all activities in Syrian territory

-- IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) July 22, 2018

It did not clarify to which organization, if any, the evacuees belonged.

Israel previously admitted that it has been providing humanitarian assistance to Syrian militants, treating over 1,000 wounded rebel fighters in its hospitals. According to Israel's ex-Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon, the assistance was granted under the condition that the militants would not let Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) and Al-Qaeda affiliated fighters slip into Israel and would not do any harm to the population of Druze villages.

Read more FILE PHOTO © Hosam Katan White Helmets are helping Syrian militants prepare 'false flag' chemical attack – Idlib residents

However, Israel has been adamant about not taking in Syrian refugees, with hawkish Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman stating last month that while the Jewish state keeps providing "humanitarian aid to civilians, women and children" camped on the Syrian side of the border, it "will not accept any Syrian refugee to our territory."

It is supposed that the White Helmets will not stay in the Jewish state for longer than is needed to transport them to the Jordanian border. The transfer has been confirmed by Jordanian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ambassador Mohammad al-Kayed, as cited by Ammon News.

Al-Kayed said that Jordan had granted the request on purely humanitarian grounds after Britain, Canada and Germany each reportedly pledged to take in a share of the White Helmets fleeing what they describe as potential persecution by Damascus. Last month, Jordan, which already hosts some 1.3 million displaced Syrians, said it won't take any more in, stressing the need for a "political solution."

Once in the Jordanian territory, the Syrians will be confined to a specially designated restricted area where they will stay for a maximum of three months until handed over to one of the Western countries, Al-Kayed noted , adding that the scheme should not place any additional burden on Jordan, as the organization of their passage has been arranged by the UN.

Read more White Helmets member walks on the rubble of destroyed buildings in Eastern Ghouta © Abdulmonam Eassa / AFP 'Propaganda organization': White Helmets 'engage in anti-Assad activities' – author Sy Hersh to RT

It's yet unclear how the members of the White Helmets, who have on multiple occasions been reported as dealing with Al-Qaeda-linked militants, will be distributed among the potential recipients, with Bild reporting that it is yet unknown how many of them will come Germany's way.

A looming evacuation of the White Helmets from Syria was first reported by CBS News on July 14. The broadcaster reported that the issue was raised by US allies in conversations with US President Donald Trump on the sidelines of the two-day NATO summit on July 11- July 12.

Reportedly, UK Prime Minister Theresa May personally interceded on the White Helmets' behalf during Trump's visit to the UK, a day after the summit.

On Friday, CBS News reported that the operation was to be launched "very quickly" and proceed in accordance with a joint plan, thrashed out by the US, the UK and Canada.

If you like this story, share it with a friend!

[Jul 22, 2018] MSM has made patently false claims about Douma false flag: the coverage can be viewed as classic fake news case

Jul 22, 2018 | caucus99percent.com

Millions of YouTube viewers have been captivated by the 'Syrian hero boy' who manages to rescue a little girl while under gunfire. Now a group of Norwegian filmmakers have told BBC Trending they are behind it. They say it was filmed on location in Malta this summer with the intention of being presented as real. Lars Klevberg, a 34-year-old film director based in Oslo, wrote a script after watching news coverage of the conflict in Syria. He says he deliberately presented the film as reality in order to generate a discussion about children in conflict zones. Were they comfortable making a film that potentially deceived millions of people? "I was not uncomfortable," Klevberg said. "By publishing a clip that could appear to be authentic we hoped to take advantage of a tool that's often used in war; make a video that claims to be real. We wanted to see if the film would get attention and spur debate, first and foremost about children and war. We also wanted to see how the media would respond to such a video."

A tool that's often used in war; make a video that claims to be real. Well, that sounds like warmongering propaganda to me, but hey, if Norwegian filmmakers want to wrap it up in a candy coating of concern for children, well, that, too is a tool that's often used in war. When all else fails, the proponents of war always pull out "save the little children." It used to be "keep that brute from molesting your women," but now that women are emancipated, sort of, it's usually "save the little children."

gjohnsit on Wed, 07/18/2018 - 5:35pm

On April 20, CNN finished a report on fake news with this statement :
If the channels are monetized -- which InfoWars has previously claimed they are -- the major newspapers could have unknowingly supported disinformation and conspiracy.
Ads also appeared on The Jimmy Dore Show channel, a far-left YouTube channel that peddles conspiracy theories, such as the idea that Syrian chemical weapons attacks are hoaxes.

Jimmy Dore questioned whether the attack even happened, and if it did happen, who did it.
That made him a kook, even with liberals.

I apologize and stand corrected. Someone needs to do something about the Jimmy imposter who looks like him, has the same show name, and posts videos with titles saying Syrian chemical attacks are a false flag operation. I don't get why someone would do him dirty like that.

-- Ana Kasparian (@AnaKasparian) 24 April 2018

Yea. False Flag Attack. That would be nuts, amirite?
So the OPCW released their first report on the Douma chemical attack.

The OPCW released the results of their fact-finding mission regarding allegations of chemical weapons use in Douma on April 7, 2018. The mission included on-site visits to collect environmental samples, interviews with witnesses, and data collection. The OPCW writes that lab analysis of the samples "show that no organophosphorous nerve agents or their degradation products were detected in the environmental samples or in the plasma samples taken from alleged casualties." The report does state that "explosive residues" and "various chlorinated organic chemicals" were found in samples from two sites. The fact finding mission team is still working on drafting final conclusions.

No organophosphorous nerve agents or their degradation products were detected in the environmental samples or in the plasma samples taken from alleged casualties."

These findings contradict the White House assessment which was released on April 13th, just days after the alleged attack. "A significant body of information points to the regime using chlorine in its bombardment of Duma, while some additional information points to the regime also using the nerve agent sarin," the White House stated.

Without waiting for a proper investigation President Trump ordered the United States military to drop more than 100 Tomahawk missiles on Damascus. The U.S. relied on alleged blood and urine data to justify this attack, but the OPCW makes no mention of any blood or urine samples.

Despite the fact that the interim OPCW report only mentions chlorine two times, the corporate media ran several headlines which state that chlorine was found in the samples. "Interim OPCW report finds proof of chlorine used in Syria's Douma," Al Jazeera wrote. Reuters ran a story titled "Chemical weapons agency finds 'chlorinated' chemicals in Syria's Douma," and later issued a correction to clarify that it what the OPCW found was "'various chlorinated organic chemicals' instead of chlorine." The BBC also changed its headline from "chlorine gas" to "possible chlorine."

So the OPCW found evidence of a chlorine attack then? No, that isn't what they reported. Check out what the MilitaryTimes said about the report.

The team said in its initial report on Douma that two industrial gas cylinders were discovered at different locations in the town: one on a top-floor patio and the other on a bed in a top-floor apartment. It said it is working to establish how they got there and whether they are linked to the alleged attack.

The team said it "needs to continue its work to draw final conclusions regarding the alleged incident and, to this end, the investigation is ongoing."

Louis Charbonneau, the U.N. director for Human Rights Watch, said the OPCW should "move quickly to finish its investigation and determine whether a chemical weapon attack occurred."

So this is essentially what we know and don't know:

1) no nerve agent attack happened
2) the OPCW still hasn't determined if a chemical attack occurred, despite the mainstream media saying otherwise (i.e. fake news).
3) the only chlorine found was in cylinders on the top floors of apartments.

As for those cylinders, is it likely the Syrian army would sneak them into rebel-held areas, and carry them to top floors before releasing the chlorine?
Or would they more likely simply drop the chlorine from helicopters?

4) Jimmy Dore has not been proven wrong, and some of what Dore has claimed has been proven right. Only the MSM has made patently false claims.

So the people doing the most screaming about fake news are the ones most wrong.

[Jul 19, 2018] A Tale of Two Poisonings by Philip Giraldi

Notable quotes:
"... Repeated requests by Russia to obtain a sample of the alleged nerve agent for testing were rejected by the British government in spite of the fact that a military grade nerve agent would have surely killed both the Skripals as well as anyone else within 100 yards. As the latest British account of the location of the alleged poison places it on the door handle of the Scripals' residence, the timetable element was also unconvincing. That meant that the two would have spent three hours, including a stop at a pub and lunch, before succumbing on a park bench. Military grade nerve agents kill instantly. ..."
"... Nevertheless, the politically weak May government, desperately seeking a formidable foreign enemy to rally around against, insisted that Russia, almost certainly acting under orders from Vladimir Putin himself, carried out the killing of a former British double agent who had been released from a Kremlin prison in a spy swap and who was no longer capable of doing any damage to Russia. Putin apparently did all that in spite of the fact that he had an election coming up and would be the host of the World Cup in the summer, an event that would be an absolute top priority to have go smoothly. ..."
Jul 17, 2018 | www.unz.com

Poisoning enemies has a long history with Augustus Caesar's wife Livia allegedly a master of the art, as were the Borgias in Renaissance Italy. Lately there has been a resurgence in allegations regarding the use of poisons of various types by several governments. The claims are particularly damaging both morally and legally as international conventions regard the use of poisonous chemical compounds as particularly heinous, condemning their use because they, when employed in quantity, become "weapons of mass destruction," killing indiscriminately and horribly, making no distinction between combatants and civilians. Their use is considered to be a "war crime" and the government officials who ordered their deployment are "war criminals," subject to prosecution by the International Criminal Court in The Hague.

There are two important poisoning stories that have made the news recently. Both are follow-ups to reporting that has appeared in the news over the past few months and both are particularly interesting because they tend to repudiate earlier coverage that had been largely accepted by several governments as well as the media and the chattering class of paid experts that appears on television.

The first story relates to the poisoning of former Russian intelligence agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in March. There was quite a bit that was odd about the Skripal case, which relied from the start " on circumstantial evidence and secret intelligence." And there was inevitably a rush to judgment. British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson blamed Russia less than forty-eight hours after the Skripals were found unconscious on a bench in Salisbury England, too soon for any chemical analysis of the alleged poisoning to have taken place.

British Prime Minister Theresa May threw gasoline on the fire when she addressed Parliament shortly thereafter to blame the Kremlin and demand a Russian official response to the event in 36 hours, declaring that the apparent poisoning was "very likely" caused by a made-in-Russia nerve agent referred to by its generic name novichok. The British media was soon on board with a vengeance, spreading the government line that such a highly sensitive operation would require the approval of President Vladimir Putin himself. The expulsion of Russian diplomats soon followed with the United States and other countries following suit.

Repeated requests by Russia to obtain a sample of the alleged nerve agent for testing were rejected by the British government in spite of the fact that a military grade nerve agent would have surely killed both the Skripals as well as anyone else within 100 yards. As the latest British account of the location of the alleged poison places it on the door handle of the Scripals' residence, the timetable element was also unconvincing. That meant that the two would have spent three hours, including a stop at a pub and lunch, before succumbing on a park bench. Military grade nerve agents kill instantly.

The head of Britain's own chemical weapons facility Porton Down even contradicted claims made by May, Foreign Minister Boris Johnson, and British Ambassador in Moscow Laurie Bristow. The lab's Chief Executive Gary Aitkenhead testified that he did not know if the nerve agent was actually produced in Russia, a not surprising observation as the chemical formula was revealed to the public in a scientific paper in 1992 and there are an estimated twenty countries capable of producing it. There are also presumed stocks of novichok remaining in independent countries that once were part of the Soviet Union, to include Russia's enemy du jour Ukraine, while a false flag operation by the British themselves, the CIA or Mossad, is not unthinkable.

Nevertheless, the politically weak May government, desperately seeking a formidable foreign enemy to rally around against, insisted that Russia, almost certainly acting under orders from Vladimir Putin himself, carried out the killing of a former British double agent who had been released from a Kremlin prison in a spy swap and who was no longer capable of doing any damage to Russia. Putin apparently did all that in spite of the fact that he had an election coming up and would be the host of the World Cup in the summer, an event that would be an absolute top priority to have go smoothly.

Now there has been an actual death in Amesbury near Salisbury that has been attributed to novichok. On June 30 th , Charlie Rowley and Dawn Sturgess were admitted to hospital after being found unconscious. Sturgess died eight days later. The May government has not yet blamed it on Putin or even on a clumsy Russian operative that might have inadvertently left behind a vial of poison or a used syringe, though Home Secretary Sajid Javid came close to that when he suggested that Russia was using Britain as a "dumping ground for poisons." Police suggestions that the poisoned couple appear to have handled novichok infused material of some kind before succumbing appears to be contradicted by inability to find the actual source of the alleged exposure.

British government dancing around the issue notwithstanding, there have been suggestions that the closest source of more novichok might well be the U.K. government labs at nearby Porton Down, only seven miles from Salisbury and Amesbury, which increases suspicion about the original story promulgated by Downing Street. Would the British government actually poison an expendable ex-Russian spy and his daughter to divert attention from a domestic political problem at home? It's worth considering as the "blame it all on Putin narrative" becomes even less credible.

The second story comes from Syria, where there is also a Russian hand as Moscow is aiding the government of Bashar al-Assad. The by now notorious April 7, 2018 alleged chemical attack on the rebel-held Syrian city of Douma was widely blamed by Western countries and the mainstream media on Assad's forces. This resulted in a decision by U.S. President Donald Trump to order massive U.S.-led retaliatory airstrikes against targets reportedly involved in chemical production in and around Damascus.

Trump blamed "animal Assad" for "using nerve agents" and both the media and most European governments followed that line, concluding that Damascus had ordered the chemical attacks a mere moments after videos purporting to show scores of chemical attack victims first surfaced from rebel sources, long before U.S. intelligence could have made its own assessment. A 5-page White House assessment released on April 13th, just days after the alleged attack asserted that sarin was used at Douma , claiming that "A significant body of information points to the regime using chlorine in its bombardment of Duma, while some additional information points to the regime also using the nerve agent sarin."

Independent sources warned at the time that not a single neutral observer was on the ground to confirm that chemical agents launched by the Syrian government had, in fact, been used, but were ignored. All of the sources reporting the attack were either affiliated with the rebels who occupied the area or were not physically present in Douma.

Now, finally, three months later, there has been a credible independent report on what was determined about the attack through chemical analysis of traces recovered in Douma. A preliminary report published last Friday by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) found no traces of any nerve agent like sarin at the site. The OPCW report states this clearly : "No organophosphorous nerve agents or their degradation products were detected in the environmental samples or in the plasma samples taken from alleged casualties."

This means that the Trump Administration claimed to have details relating to an event in a foreign country that it did not know and could not actually confirm to be true. And it used that as a justification for ordering an airstrike that killed people and destroyed targets in Syria. Will the White House respond to the OPCW report and apologize, possibly to include reparations for an unjustified attack on another sovereign nation? Don't hold your breath.

The Salisbury and Douma attacks are illustrative of just what happens when a government is prepared to dissimulate or even lie to go the extra mile to make a case to justify preemptive action that otherwise might be challenged. Theresa May is, unfortunately, still in power and so is Donald Trump. In a better world an outraged public would demand that they be thrown out of office and even possibly subjected to the tender ministrations of the International Criminal Court in The Hague. With power comes accountability, or at least that should be the rule, but it is a dictum that has for some time been ignored. Even given that, one might hope that the blunders will not be repeated, but there is not even any assurance that either May or Trump is much given to "lessons learned" or that a Mike Pence or Boris Johnson would be any better. That is our tragedy.

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is www.councilforthenationalinterest.org, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is inform@cnionline.org.


FKA Max , Website July 17, 2018 at 4:29 am GMT

Putin apparently did all that in spite of the fact that he had an election coming up and would be the host of the World Cup in the summer, an event that would be an absolute top priority to have go smoothly.
[...]
Would the British government actually poison an expendable ex-Russian spy and his daughter to divert attention from a domestic political problem at home? It's worth considering as the "blame it all on Putin narrative" becomes even less credible.

Mr. Giraldi,

these were my thoughts at first too, but I looked into the case quite extensively over the last several weeks and came to the conclusion that Putin actually had more of a motive than the British government, et al.

This is my evolution on the Skripals' case:

On Skripal I'm not entirely certain, since I haven't really looked into the case. Also the timing of the incident seems to be not what Putin would have chosen, in my opinion, since it was too close to the soccer World Cup events/celebrations in Russia, and Putin usually tries to be conciliatory with the West before big sporting events like that in Russia, e.g. when he released Khodorkovsky early before the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, for example.

https://www.unz.com/article/revisiting-litvinenko-what-really-happened/#comment-2401031

As I said before, I was agnostic about the Skripal case and tried to keep an open mind about it and not reflexively blame it on (the) Russians (government), but you providing me with this additional information makes me actually more of a believer in the official Western narrative now.

https://www.unz.com/article/revisiting-litvinenko-what-really-happened/#comment-2401541

I'm reaching here, and this is pure speculation on my part, but could it be that the Skripals were poisoned ( March 4, 2018 ) by Putin, et al. to distract from the 200+ Russian mercenaries allegedly killed by U.S. airstrikes in Syria ( February 7, 2018 ) http://www.unz.com/tsaker/book-review-losing-military-supremacy-the-myopia-of-american-strategic-planning-by-andrei-martyanov/#comment-2406731 before the Russian election ( March 18, 2018 )?

https://www.unz.com/article/revisiting-litvinenko-what-really-happened/#comment-2407120

Repeated requests by Russia to obtain a sample of the alleged nerve agent for testing were rejected by the British government in spite of the fact that a military grade nerve agent would have surely killed both the Skripals as well as anyone else within 100 yards.

They mention that only 3 known cases of Novichok agent poisoning had been treated before the cases of the Skripals, so there was very little guidance and experience to go on in how to treat Yulia and her father. https://www.unz.com/article/revisiting-litvinenko-what-really-happened/#comment-2401824

Skripals doctor: 'We expected them not to survive' – BBC News

tac , July 17, 2018 at 5:25 am GMT
@FKA Max

You should watch a recent interview with Walter Litvinenko (father of the deceased Alexander Litvinenko) to hear his startling admissions:

jilles dykstra , July 17, 2018 at 7:17 am GMT
It was hilarious to watch yesterday evening, as the presidential plane had been underway for two and a half hours, the consternation on CNN.
As I expected, the vague accusations about Russian meddling in the elections continued this morning, on CNN.
I remember an interview on CNN before the elections, someoen said 'if Trump wins', the two of CNN burst into laughter.
I do hope Trump survives, politically and fysically.
Luckily is it not very ease to murder a president these days.
On top of that, Sept 11 made many all over the world quite suspicious.
I for one never believed that Russia would be so stupid as to try to murder two former spies in such a stupid way, and without any motive.
MH17 is a similar case.
Assad also is not stupid, he had no interest whatsoever to use poison gas in Syria.
How Arafat died we still do not know, that was done professionally, or maybe not, if I had to kill him I would try to make his death look natural, a clear cause.
Who had a motive is quite clear.
Greg Bacon , Website July 17, 2018 at 9:18 am GMT
Until the unhinged May lets Yulia go free–if she's still alive–and go back to Russia and tell her side of the story, nothing will change.

The so-called Deep State and its willing toady, the corrupt, lying MSM are accomplices in this False Flag and they are the ones that should be in the dock at the ICC. But since the ICC is part of the Deep State, don't expect this to happen.

This Russian bashing has gotten completely out of hand. And now that Putin has stated that the sleazy Russian thief oligarch Browder helped launder 400 million to the DNC-Clinton Mob, it's going to get very interesting, if not dangerous for humanity.

They need a BIG distraction to get the sheeple's thought off the truth that there is NOTHING to the Putin-Trump election meddling, anything might happen, even a repeat of the Israeli masterminded 9/11 False Flag.

Does 'Lucky Larry' own anymore asbestos-laden skyscrapers?

EliteCommInc. , July 17, 2018 at 10:02 am GMT
i would love to make a formal complaint about conspiracies because there are people who will and do make trouble for others. it has taken me a long time to come to that place – but it is no joke as dr. geraldi no doubt knows.

however, one needs the evidence and what has been lacking in all these accusations whether its russia and us elections, chemical weapons in syria, or supposed poisoning of three people formerly associated with russia, there is suspicion, and there is narrative, but little in the way of facts. and if any of these accusations were concerning single individual battling mere gossip and innuendo or other nefarious behaviors, i have learned to discount nothing. look if you can't bring a coupon into a store, wait for coffee without people launching into fits of fear of life . . . then who knows what triggers people's self defense. it apparently dos not take much for the supposed superior people to make their inferiors look off kilt. i just take it granted that when i leave my house, on occasion, i have visitors – as "nutty" as that sounds.

but these cases have multiple researchers and resources to bar on the matter and yet, the evidence is either mere narrative, contradicted or has a variety of explanations just as reasonable or more reasonable. but what we have is an entire population engaged in manufacturing not one but several cases in which the president of the us actually engaged in treason based on sketchy financial dealings with russian banks and financial elites.

and i think this article makes the case that people with power who engage in wielding accusations should be held to the standard of providing evidence. and while i am a little uncomfortable with our president engaging in open debate with our intel community from overseas, his objection is well put. the process of evidence collection and by independent objective observers is unreasonable. yet he found it quite convenient to buy the argument by the same intel agencies for said use in syria. the election is over, but the war about the election, the level of dislike of the elected , i think it is fair to say has never been so widespread and deep such that members of the government or government agencies would sign up to press the matter.

and quip reflctions about the damage being done and "it's all in one's head" just are insufficient to address the issues.

frankly, i think the country's not outraged because they are "drama fatigued" last week in attempting to capture a stray kitten who disappearance has me overly stretched – i never used to like cats – bells rang and doors closed indicating that she had in fact been enclosed on the patio – around two am or so – only to discover a cute little skunk was the detainee. whose release required navigating around the house twice because the door locked actually worked. sometimes the evidence doesn't doesn't reveal what was expected.

as for the kitten, evidence suggests she managed to punch her way through a steel mesh garage vent. now i suspect that someone recently punched a hole in those mesh barriers, but that is speculation on my part, even likely speculation. however, minus the proof that is all it is. a mysterious frustrating event.

who knows maybe the cat and the skunk are pals.

All we like sheep , Website July 17, 2018 at 10:47 am GMT
With the sad demise of the woman of the couple, the continuing make-up story in MSM makes the twist that the nerve agent was found in a perfume bottle. While of these two non-Russian people (who allegedly were former drug-addicts) one may suspect that they pick up any strange bottle from the ground and have a sniff at it, this is completely surrealistic in the case of the Skripals. The difference couldn't be bigger between these two couples. Anyhow, the clue that brings them four together is the vicinity of Porton Down, where chemical weapons are stored & tested.
dearieme , July 17, 2018 at 10:55 am GMT
If I had to guess at what's been going on in Salisbury I'd wonder if a lunatic/evil employee at Porton Down has smuggled out something nasty and is amusing himself with it.
Moi , July 17, 2018 at 11:15 am GMT
Mr. Giraldi, you're telling me the American and Brit governments lie. Who'd have thunk

ps: do we still have people locked up in Gitmo without being charged of a crime? Just wondering

prusmc , Website July 17, 2018 at 11:52 am GMT
@All we like sheep

The author laments that May and Trump are still in office.
She will last longer than he will. Trump will be out in three months either by impeachment and conviction or by other means. None of this clandestine stuff like poisoning but by a military coup. I remember the era of 7 Days in May but that was not serious just a storey teller weaving a good yarn. Today, we have members of Congress and large numbers of the media(probably over 50 percent) calling for a Armed Forces take over.
The probable stumbling block is how to skip Pense and go directly to Speaker Paul Ryan. Or how to dispense with the chain of succession entirely and enshrine Hilary or recall Obama until the emergency is over.
Is Mad Dog the man or will McMaster lead the coup? Remember, anyone wearing more than one star made the elite grade during the Obama regime and some of the one stars had formative years as O-6 and O-5 while Obama ruled supreme.

The Alarmist , July 17, 2018 at 11:52 am GMT

"Military grade nerve agents kill instantly."

Quickly, not instantly. If you had an atropine pen handy, you might survive, though it would leave you immobilised and dazed. If the Skripals were dosed, it would likely have been at or near the bench where they were found. Residue on their clothing might be weak enough to not kill the constable.

Michael Kenny , July 17, 2018 at 12:34 pm GMT
Clearly, Putin's American supporters see the summit as a flop from their champion's point of view.
Tyrion 2 , Website July 17, 2018 at 12:58 pm GMT
@The Alarmist

The only thing the Salisbury incidents provide evidence for is that our culture is prone to hysterical outrage over anything relating to Russia or Putin.

And that's true even if it were rogue elements in the Russian security services.

ploni almoni , July 17, 2018 at 1:44 pm GMT
@FKA Max

Similarly, I was initially skeptical about the Moon landings but with time I have to the conclusion that they are plausible.

rbc , July 17, 2018 at 1:47 pm GMT
What I really loved about the coverage of the Skripal "poisoning" were the pictures of the cops wearing hazmat suits to clean up the park bench. In the same shot birds were hopping around apparently unaffected by the deadly nerve gas. So we're to believe that this stuff could kill a big cop but not a 2 pound pigeon .
Jake , July 17, 2018 at 3:16 pm GMT
British secret service and its 3 main children – CIA, Mossad, Saudi General Intelligence Agency – are morally capable of committing any horror imaginable against civilians, even their own.

The Anglo-Zionist Empire is desperate to find the One Ring That Rules Them All.

Jake , July 17, 2018 at 3:18 pm GMT
@rbc

That's no more absurd than thousands of things promoted as truth by the WASP empires over the past 400 years.

Felix-Culpa , July 17, 2018 at 4:15 pm GMT
@Jake

Yes, like that the Protestant Revolt which still gets called a "Reformation" was anything other than a looting operation.

AnonFromTN , July 17, 2018 at 4:22 pm GMT
@Biff

That's so naïve. When you commit a crime and have witnesses in your custody, you make sure they never talk. "Elementary, Watson", as Holmes used to say.

jacques sheete , July 17, 2018 at 4:24 pm GMT

Shaping a story to fit the agenda

That's why we have "journalists" and "historians," mass media and skoolink (yooniversities included), and I find it amazing that the stories change as fast as the agendas.

edNels , July 17, 2018 at 5:32 pm GMT
@NoseytheDuke

Oh "These Kids today" that old refrain again, and it's getting old too, all the emphasis on kids anyway, from concerns about posterity, to the unending posturing about faux parent related concerns sublimated in one way or another to the other mantra: " oh the Children" thing that phony liberal types do.

But to the point:

What a pity Western "Intelligence" seems to have never heard the story of The Boy Who Cried 'Wolf'.

When do these little monsters ever get a chance to hear childhood stories nowadays glued to their carry style devices, wearable devices, soon inserted devices , to hear any of the old wisdom? It now isn't all that likely. It is more the kids teaching the kids in a modern high tech reality version of Lord of the Flies scenario.

When they are inevitably inducted into the professions as they will, replacing remnants of earlier generations that maybe still had been somewhat exposed to folk tales and stories, or better TV of earlier times, well, don't be surprised that the rank and file of the intelligence industry, like elsewhere is unable personally to easily navigate anything, much less possessing inborn sensibility gained from age old culture and all that. Could it be in the whole Fake News genre too, it seems to indicate some dialectic flaw in thinking, (a priori as it were.) I feel like it's coming from youngsters lacking any frame of reference/experience blundering, not being held to account!
The Brat Pack was given free reign and away they go arrogant to a fault

What was folk knowledge is a cumbersome, anachronistic, vestigial relic of another era, sought to be replaced soon, by robots.

Who needs the f'n brats ?

Bill jones , July 17, 2018 at 5:47 pm GMT
The political filth really have no shame, do they?
chris , July 17, 2018 at 6:12 pm GMT
@jilles dykstra

I think we know that Arafat was poisoned.

exudd1 , July 17, 2018 at 6:39 pm GMT
@Fran Macadam

Well said. Agree completely. Thanks.

Z-man , July 17, 2018 at 6:41 pm GMT
@prusmc

None of this clandestine stuff like poisoning but by a military coup. I remember the era of 7 Days in May but that was not serious just a storey teller weaving a good yarn. Today, we have members of Congress and large numbers of the media(probably over 50 percent) calling for a Armed Forces take over.

Watching too many old movies now , haven't we? LOL!!

The probable stumbling block is how to skip Pense and go directly to Speaker Paul Ryan. Or how to dispense with the chain of succession entirely and enshrine Hilary or recall Obama until the emergency is over.

Ok, now you need to be put down or at least committed. LOL

FKA Max , Website July 17, 2018 at 7:00 pm GMT
@tac

I'm glad Litvinenko Sr. is taken care of in his old age by the Russian state:

BAD CHEMISTRY? Ft. Walter Litvinenko, Father of Alexander Litvinenko

Although he chose to leave Russian of his own will, the authorities were unlikely to welcome him back and his dramatic u-turn looks like a calculated attempt to smooth the way for his return to the country of his birth.

Clearly relishing Mr Litvinenko senior's propaganda gift in the run-up to a presidential election expected to be won by Vladimir Putin next month, Russian state TV said the unhappy exile had run out of money and that electricity and gas had been cut off to his tiny Italian flat for non-payment of bills.
[...]
Alexander Goldfarb, the co-author of a book about the murder and a friend of the late Litvinenko, accused Russian TV of acting in an irresponsible and inhumane manner, saying the Kremlin's propaganda chiefs had exploited his grief and troubled psychological condition.

"They used the troubled psychological state of an elderly man for propaganda purposes in order to whitewash Alexander's killers," he said.

"Walter is going through a really tough time in connection with his wife's death a few months ago and feels lonely. It happens with old people."

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/russia/9057560/Alexander-Litvinenkos-father-calls-his-son-a-traitor.html

Salisbury poisoning: Skripals 'were under Russian surveillance' – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-44717835

http://www.unz.com/article/revisiting-litvinenko-what-really-happened/#comment-2403171

Skripals 'were under Russian surveillance' – BBC Newsnight

Newsnight's Diplomatic and Defence Editor, Mark Urban, reveals that the Skripals 'were under Russian surveillance' and that he personally had several meetings with Sergei Skripal last year.

AnonFromTN , July 17, 2018 at 7:01 pm GMT
@Bill jones

Did they ever have shame? The world would be much better place if they did.

Bill Jones , July 17, 2018 at 7:40 pm GMT
@FKA Max

"Newsnight's Diplomatic and Defence Editor, Mark Urban, reveals"

Newsnight's Diplomatic and Defence Editor, Mark Urban, claims

there, fixed that for you.

Sean , July 17, 2018 at 8:52 pm GMT
Did you hear the one about the couple who found a bottle of perfume?

https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/6794418/police-have-grainy-cctv-of-russian-spooks-who-carried-out-novichok-attack-on-ex-spy-sergei-skripal-and-his-daughter/

As Mad Frank said, two men together always looks suspicious. https://www.theguardian.com/world/video/2018/mar/06/russian-spy-mystery-cctv-emerges-of-two-people-police-are-looking-for-video

I am very embarrassed for the GRU , they are even more incompetent than the French Secret Service combat swimmers who blew up the that Greenpeace ship. Russia should have sent a Spetsnaz veteran with his trusty entrenching tool to deal with Skripal. Or maybe one of their Kamikazi exploding dogs.

ThreeCranes , July 17, 2018 at 9:18 pm GMT
@tac

Maybe Putin did have them killed or poisoned because Russian intelligence had uncovered their plot to explode a dirty bomb in London which had been set up so as to implicate the Russians. The plotters were foiled and hoist by their own petard.

AnonFromTN , July 17, 2018 at 10:10 pm GMT
@Sean

I tell you a secret. GRU agents, on direct orders from Putin, killed JFK, burnt Giordano Bruno, crucified Christ, and poisoned Socrates. What's more, they are also responsible for the extinction of the dinosaurs. Didn't you suspect that?

Sean , July 17, 2018 at 10:16 pm GMT
@Tyrion 2

Rogue elements once, but not twice. Why is anyone's guess, the eliciting of hysterical outrage ?

Sean , July 17, 2018 at 10:29 pm GMT
@ThreeCranes

Russia seems to be burning its bridges with the West, which may be a deliberate long term strategy by Putin.

Sean , July 17, 2018 at 10:45 pm GMT
@AnonFromTN

I did not even know those you named had ever been in the GRU, let alone they were British moles.

If you wake up and there is snow all over the ground, that is circumstantial evidence that it snowed in the night. When a Russian poisons Russians there is not all this Technical Tom sophistry, and motive is important especially when it supports the circumstantial evidence.

https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/indepth/brilliant-russian-engineer-poisoned-dozens-of-his-colleagues-at-top-secret-defence-plant-and-left-them-bald-in-botched-revenge-plot-aimed-at-his-boss/ar-AAvHyBm

Prison is full of people who say they are innocent.

unseated , July 18, 2018 at 12:20 am GMT
@prusmc

Trump will be out in three months either by impeachment and conviction or by other means.

I have a friend who said that to me a year ago and another who said it six months ago.

Colin Wright , Website July 18, 2018 at 2:13 am GMT
' Theresa May is, unfortunately, still in power and so is Donald Trump. In a better world an outraged public would demand that they be thrown out of office '

At least in the case of Trump, the problem with rejecting him is, as it always has been, the alternative.

It's literally oppressive that to date, no superior alternative to Trump has emerged. However, like it or not, one hasn't.

bjondo , July 18, 2018 at 2:45 am GMT
@FKA Max

Alexander Goldfarb the promoter of Pussy Riot?

He's certainly legit.

AnonFromTN , July 18, 2018 at 2:55 am GMT
@Colin Wright

Is there a superior alternative to May? If there is, why didn't Brits get rid of that embarrassment? Next to her even John Major looks like an outstanding statesman.

Wally , July 18, 2018 at 2:58 am GMT
@Colin Wright

said:
"It's literally oppressive that to date, no superior alternative to Trump has emerged. However, like it or not, one hasn't."

You mean that little rich 'Marxist' Latina is not a viable alternative?

'Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the 'girl from the Bronx,' raised in one of wealthiest US counties'

https://www.theblaze.com/news/2018/06/30/report-alexandria-ocasio-cortez-the-girl-from-the-bronx-raised-in-one-of-wealthiest-us-counties

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez says: 'Occupy All ICE Offices, Borders, U.S. Airports', 'Occupy All of It'

https://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2018/07/17/alexandria-ocasio-cortez-occupy-all-ice-offices-borders-u-s-airports-occupy-all-of-it/

Intelligent Dasein , Website July 18, 2018 at 3:03 am GMT
Every time I think about it, I do find it truly astonishing that we (the USA) launched a missile salvo into Syria based on an obvious and now proven false flag, and very few people seem to care. This is one of those glaring, "hidden in plain sight" contradictions to the narrative which tells me that, while the Deep State is finally losing some ground, its liquidation is far, far from over and all kinds of things are going to fall apart as this thrashing monster slowly sinks beneath the waves.
Wally , July 18, 2018 at 3:07 am GMT
@prusmc

said:
"Trump will be out in three months either by impeachment and conviction or by other means. "

Yawn. Heard that on election night

'The Left needs to face reality: Trump is winning' : https://nypost.com/2018/06/30/the-left-needs-to-face-reality-trump-is-winning/

Wizard of Oz , July 18, 2018 at 3:24 am GMT
@dearieme

Yes, interesting that PG has only now brought to a UR article that rather obvious possible connection between Porton Down and the nearby poisonings.

I don't think it is one of his major areas of attention. Why else would he include with Trump the unfortunate May as someone he would like to see people rise up against and throw out of office for offences unstated?

Wizard of Oz , July 18, 2018 at 3:27 am GMT
@AnonFromTN

Her performance on Skripal right or wrong is hardly worth mentioning when deciding whether and when she has to go. Compared to Brexit give it a 2 per cent weighting.

Colin Wright , Website July 18, 2018 at 3:29 am GMT
@Wally

My guess is that we haven't heard the last of Ms. Hyphen-Cortez.

"Ocasio-Cortez hedges criticisms of Israel– 'I may not use the right words'
US Politics Philip Weiss on July 15, 2018

Rising Democratic star Alexandria Ocasio-Cortex, soon to go to Congress from NY, all but apologized for using words "massacre" and "occupation" about Israel, saying she spoke as an "activist," and she is no expert on the Middle East and is willing to "learn and evolve." '

She's trainable.

NoseytheDuke , July 18, 2018 at 4:26 am GMT
@Wizard of Oz

Her performance has included telling bald-faced lies, lies that are easily exposed as lies too. This is rarely if ever going to add weight to any personal brand, let alone that of a political leader. She's toast!

byrresheim , July 18, 2018 at 11:45 am GMT
@Felix-Culpa

Indeed, sir.
Indeed.

L Garou , July 18, 2018 at 12:55 pm GMT
The sun never sets on the crimes of the British Empire..

[Jul 09, 2018] 'Propaganda organization' White Helmets 'engage in anti-Assad activities' author Sy Hersh

Another version: skripals were him by members of Russian mafia
Jul 09, 2018 | www.youtube.com

Although some members of the Western-supported White Helmets may be in the business of saving lives, the group is also a 'propaganda organization,' author Sy Hersh has told RT's 'Going Underground.'

The Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist also spoke about reporting in the United States and how it changed under the Obama administration, as well as the poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury, UK.

Check out http://rt.com

RT LIVE http://rt.com/on-air

Subscribe to RT! http://www.youtube.com/subscription_c...

Like us on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/RTnews
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RT (Russia Today) is a global news network broadcasting from Moscow and Washington studios. RT is the first news channel to break the 1 billion YouTube views benchmark.

[Jul 09, 2018] Only a small fraction of reporters are reliable truthtellers and not misinformers/ disinformers/ propagandists/ self-censorer-for-job-security.

Jul 09, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Corruption of OPCW by Western militarists


Al-Pol , Jul 8, 2018 2:42:04 AM | 33

James @23 . The OPCW FFM did visit a warehouse and suspected chemical weapon facility ...but dismissed them both rather quickly.
"2.7 Based on the equipment and chemicals observed during the two on-site visits to the warehouse and the facility suspected by the authorities of the Syrian Arab Republic of producing chemical weapons, there was no indication of either facility being involved in the production of chemical warfare agents. "
Al-Pol , Jul 8, 2018 2:58:18 AM | 34
So when did the OPCW start putting out "interim" reports ? It appears to be both a confession and a plea (to their main sponsors). A confession that they haven't got anything at all to back up the original "Sarin attack" stories and a plea to any possible "experts" out there who may be able to bend the flimsy evidence they have into evidence of a chlorine attack. The media is just jumping the gun, probably in the knowledge that those "experts" will be found before the final report comes out.
uncle tungsten , Jul 8, 2018 4:06:48 AM | 35
These are issues upon which circumstances of war or peace can turn. The OPCW is a disgrace and discredits itself by being equivocal with language. The authors of its reports know damn well what the consequences of imprecise language can be and how a glib turn of phrase can inspire a holocaust response to a civilian population confined to a city where a belligerent warmonger state can leap on their reports and rain devastation.

NOT GOOD ENOUGH! Shame on the OPCW for publishing a document that has been immediately twisted. Shame on every senior scientist and every senior administrator for allowing this to happen.

It would have taken no time at all to use text that was tight enough to leave no room for gaming by belligerent media and state actors. This is a disgusting performance by a critical party on which the whole world relies for competency.

Tuyzentfloot , Jul 8, 2018 5:52:01 AM | 36
Maybe some of the journalists are being dishonest but I see mainly confirmation bias.
The mainstream 'knows' that Assad uses chemical weapons. The mainstream also makes a distincion between formal and informal thinking. Example about the Yemen war. in general the war is seen as a proxy war with Iran, but even now I encounter articles which mention this as claims or suspicions. This is not because there are doubts, but because they are trying to get things right formally. On this type of formal statements the press is often willing to be corrected, but it will not change any minds because it's just about the distinction between 'strictly speaking' and 'extremely plausible'.
So in this case the OPCW mentions something about chlorine, but it leads nowhere. Well, OPCW are being formal, so they can't state hard conclusions. Informally the hint is enough to conclude(confirm) that even though there is no hard proof chlorine weapons were used. Strong confirmation bias at work. Maybe you can just call this bad journalism. I prefer to see it as a proof that the commonsense of the mainstream is way off.
@SomeGuy

I think you'll find that the reputation of the reporter, journalist and/or analyst is more important than the site you visit to get your news. Some sites -- those I consider to be corrupted (e.g., TruthDig)-- will publish articles from many different authors, only a small fraction of which are reliable truthtellers and not misinformers/ disinformers/ propagandists/ self-censorer-for-job-security. I understand that this is a little pedantic, but I just want to be clear: you should specifically be asking who to go to rather than where to go for news and information.

Individual preferences will vary based on where you're from, what langauge(s) you speak and what your interests are. As a layman and US expat residing in Germany, I've whittled my primary sources of English geopolitical news down to b at Moon of Alabama, Craig Murray, and Opinion contributors at RT English. For the awful state of US affairs, I read RT, look out for stories by Ray McGovern and Philip Giraldi, Glen Ford and Margaret Kimberley, Chris Hedges, The Saker and Ron Unz. Unz Review links to several of the above sources in its "Alternative Media" list near the bottom of its homepage. A quick internet search can lead you to the others.

In general, Western truthseekers must follow the money: stay away from authors funded by Western governments, media, NGOs, and billionaire philanthropies/foundations/organizations. Most Western truthtellers are freelancers that establish and maintain their own websites and rely only on reader contributions or supplement their income with book sales and speaking engagements.

@SomeGuy

I think you'll find that the reputation of the reporter, journalist and/or analyst is more important than the site you visit to get your news. Some sites -- those I consider to be corrupted (e.g., TruthDig)-- will publish articles from many different authors, only a small fraction of which are reliable truthtellers and not misinformers/ disinformers/ propagandists/ self-censorer-for-job-security. I understand that this is a little pedantic, but I just want to be clear: you should specifically be asking who to go to rather than where to go for news and information.

Individual preferences will vary based on where you're from, what langauge(s) you speak and what your interests are. As a layman and US expat residing in Germany, I've whittled my primary sources of English geopolitical news down to b at Moon of Alabama, Craig Murray, and Opinion contributors at RT English. For the awful state of US affairs, I read RT, look out for stories by Ray McGovern and Philip Giraldi, Glen Ford and Margaret Kimberley, Chris Hedges, The Saker and Ron Unz. Unz Review links to several of the above sources in its "Alternative Media" list near the bottom of its homepage. A quick internet search can lead you to the others.

In general, Western truthseekers must follow the money: stay away from authors funded by Western governments, media, NGOs, and billionaire philanthropies/foundations/organizations. Most Western truthtellers are freelancers that establish and maintain their own websites and rely only on reader contributions or supplement their income with book sales and speaking engagements.

[Jul 09, 2018] Sic Semper Tyrannis No nerve or other chemical agent at Douma - OPCW

Jul 09, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

[Jul 09, 2018] White helmets and Douma false flag are typical intelligence guided propaganda operation

Jul 09, 2018 | www.youtube.com

digital tyranny , 6 days ago

Americans need to strapped to chairs with their eyes clamped open, Clockwork Orange style. and shown endless loops of the horrors and war crimes being done in their names.

Susan Raby-Dunne , 6 days ago

I would just take issue with one thing in this interview, chlorine was used in WWI and it WAS lethal the way it was used in 1915. People and animals died in April and May of 1915. There were also a few "chlorine bombs" lobbed that had some effect early in the war. So for him to say chlorine is not lethal is false. It's not very effective but can work in certain circumstances.

Richard Llewellyn , 5 days ago

Hersh has lost his balls he is trying to play safe how sad. Grow a pair Hersh, you wrote about the first Syrian Sarin attack that Hillary Authorized that killed over 800 men women and children. How the Sarin came from Lybia transported through Turkey and given to ISIS.

Deborah Anne Weber , 6 days ago

Chlorine WAS used as part of agent Orange, the defoliant - in Vietnam. The Chlorine by product created was TCDD, specifically 2, 3, 7, 8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-P-dioxin - a byproduct of Chlorine. TCDD is cancer-causing and causes other nasty health effects...

Liberum Oratio , 5 days ago

White helmets have been caught out staging things, even had 1 of their members pretend to be hurt or dead for photos. Typical Islamics full of taqiyya and hatred for everything else blaming anything and everything for their own disasterous ideology.

mike brabant , 6 days ago

I watched programs on the White Helmets in Syria and the stories told by witnesses that said their loved ones were trapped in bombed out buildings and they asked them for help retrieving their children and the White Helmets told them get them out yourself?? Also people said that their clothes were always spotless in a war zone??? The White Helmets headquarters was vacated and there was ISS flags still on the walls where they were for months at a time?? These are no do gooders that's for sure!!!!

acidpunx , 3 days ago

Its very hard to find any evidence the white helmets have saved 1 life but i have loads of them working with ISIS and making fake videos or playing with half dead/dead children with syringes,ask civilians in Syria and so far never heard of them

[Jul 09, 2018] Alt-media websites that you probably can mostly trust

Jul 09, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Here's the New York Times telling similar lies in fancy video form from June 24th

Yaj , Jul 8, 2018 5:41:43 PM | 59
Here's the New York Times telling similar lies in fancy video form from June 24th:

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2018/06/24/world/middleeast/douma-syria-chemical-attack-augmented-reality-ar-ul.html


Based on this leaked version of the report, which doesn't prove anything more than the final version:


https://www.nytimes.com/2018/06/20/world/middleeast/un-syria-eastern-ghouta.html


PDF:

https://int.nyt.com/data/documenthelper/50-united-nations-commission-doc/865546bdd15e4bb35f11/optimized/full.pdf#page=1


Surprised MofA didn't comment on these inventions.

Harry , Jul 8, 2018 9:54:23 PM | 60
The OPCW report included a helpful table showing its "biomedical" test results. Apparently they took plasma samples. All negative for all chems.

[Jul 08, 2018] Syria - OPCW Issues First Report Of Chemical Weapon Attack in Douma

From comment of chet380, Jul 7, 2018 7:03:08 PM (19): "Notwithstanding the counter-evidence and the strong counter-arguments, the decision by the OPCW to include references to 'chlorinated chemical compounds' guaranteed that the 'attack' scenario would continue to be advanced.Is it possible that the UK, US and/or France put pressure on the OPCW to make the inclusion so they would not have to admit they were wrong and that they were fooled? The fraud of the White Helmets should have been exposed by the OPCW inspection, but this interim report will give them continued life."
Notable quotes:
"... Interestingly the MI6 outlet in Coventry, the Syrian Observatory For Human Rights (SOHR), does not confirm a 'gas' incident. ..."
"... The "Sarin" organophosphate use the 'rebels' claimed is thereby debunked. No degradation products of such chemicals were found. The "various chlorinated organic chemicals" are unsurprising. Chlorine is widely used for water purification and cleaning and "chlorinated organic chemicals" will be found in any household. ..."
"... The preliminary OPCW report says nothing about the concentrations in which these substances were found. Without knowing the concentrations, which may may be extremely low, one can not come to further conclusion. The report includes none of the witness statements the fact finding mission took. In various TV reports the medical personal of the one hospital involved in the stunt said that none of their patients were affected by chlorine or chemical weapons. ..."
"... After the 'rebels' claimed the 'chemical attack' and published their staged videos of stacked bodies U.S. President Trump tweeted that he would retaliate for the strike. Politically he could not pull back from that even when Secretary of Defense Mattis voiced his doubts about the 'rebel' claims. Trump attacked Syria with a series of cruise missiles most of which were shot down by the Syrian air defense. A civil chemical laboratory was destroyed during the attack but no one was hurt. ..."
"... They cannot admit everything was staged. And the report is not at all clear, so anyone can give it the desired spin. ..."
"... They didn't find anything relevant. See Appendix 3 of the report. There's no mention of traces of chlorine which I would find hard to believe anyway, they refer to chloride Cl- as in NaCl (table salt) or organic chlorides, of which they do name at least one. ..."
"... The Guardian employs Olivia Solon, a digital journalist (whose specialty is in writing about and recommending particular IT consumer hardware or software products) based in California, with no knowledge or access to knowledge about Syria, its politics or history, to write an article defending the White Helmets and defame the investigative journalists Eva Bartlett and Vanessa Beeley. That practice seems to be par for the course for The Guardian and other print and online newspapers. ..."
"... And yes, the corporate MSM is definitely profit-driven. When "news" was separate from "entertainment," there was some free press possible, but once they were combined, any imaginary wall between sponsors and newscasters was removed. ..."
"... Here in the US, CBS was founded by William Paley, who had been in charge of radio propaganda for the US Army Office of Psychological Warfare. CBS was owned by Westinghouse, which became the world's largest military contractor during WW II. ..."
"... Neither CBS and NBC ever generated even 5% of their parent companies revenues. The real profits were in consumer products and war. And so, not just their news, but all of their programming promoted world views that encouraged consumption and war. ..."
"... Almost all reporters covering international news are working for the various government and private intelligence agencies/think tanks and many domestic reporters as well. ..."
"... This has been the case for over 50 years if not a century. Many of the critical reports are likely written by the agencies/think tanks. Many CIA interns work at MSM for example and reporters are recruited as early as college if not high school through thr corporate government education system. ..."
"... Regarding comments of journalists, the problem may not always be with them. There have been countless discussions on the influence of intelligence agencies. Most people would choose to do the right thing when given the choice. However, if the choices are following orders or "suicide by nailgun", most people would choose to live another day. ..."
"... The British-created Anglo-American funded black propaganda organisation, the so-called White Helmets were the primary source for the claims of Sarin use by the SAG in Douma. In as just world, the White Helmets as proven liars would now become international pariahs. That they will still be hailed as heroes in the West and western MSM so just how sick the West and western MSM really are. Perhaps now that the OPCW is free to cast blame for "chemical weapons incidents", they should name and shame the United Kingdom for its black propaganda. ..."
"... Well, we all knew a false flag op was pending. So here it is. Also Trump is a POS. ..."
"... When the White Helmets and the rebels staged the 'Douma' chemical attack they were probably expecting that Douma would not be liberated and that no serious inspection would take place to debunk the 'fake' attack. That was bad luck for them. Contrary to the other chemical "attacks" locations, an inspection on location has taken place early enough and the masks may be falling. ..."
"... There are critically important information here from Vanessa Beelley False Flag Fail: How Syrian Civilians Derailed White Helmet 'Chemical' Stunt in Eastern Ghouta that Bernhardt has not mentioned. ..."
"... The White Helmets specifically stated that the protesters had ruined their chemical attack and ruined their communications with the UN, and that the Americans would not come to their assistance because of it. This incident explains important aspects of the false flag: ..."
"... 1) So close to impending defeat, the terrorists were really desperate to induce the Americans to save them, and really believed they would do so; ..."
"... the conflicting signals given out by the MI6 proxies SOHR I would read as a damage limitation act specifically in response to the civilian protest; ..."
"... It would appear that MI6 feared news of this protest would be spread, so that they needed to protect their proxies. ..."
"... Unfortunately, despite this information being published by Vanessa Beeley, I haven't seen any other mention of it. The protesters endangered their lives by this protest, at least one of them [or another hostage? - this is not clear] was shot dead for it, and all of them were sentenced to death. They deserve due publicity for it and it is really important to an understanding of the incident as a whole. ..."
"... Bernhardt, I am afraid I don't share your apparent confidence in this OPCW report. It is far too little and lopsided after months of investigation, and appears to be designed to test the waters for a decision confirming that chlorine was used as a weapon, and to coordinate with the MSM to prepare the ground for such a decision. In that case, the MSM reaction to the report is highly consistent with such an objective. ..."
"... Why did the the report make no caveats about the chlorine compounds, why did they include no data about concentrations, why did they emphasise the chain of custody of the (probably trivial) chrorine compound samples (and only those samples), why no information on witness testimony, why no mention of the witness testimony in the Hague, why mention (totally irrelevant) testimony of alleged witnesses in Turkey and biological samples taken in Turkey for which no plausible chain of custody exists? ..."
"... This report is a scandal, an outrage. This report itself is a false flag, it is designed to appease those observers who know the incident was a false flag by using carefully ambiguous wording, while preparing the ground for a full-blown 99% dishonest and 100% misleading report condemning the Syrian government. ..."
"... For Trump self inflicted ego wound somebody will pay. ..."
"... If the OPCW can no longer be trusted; then what? The U.S. has done an admirable job of destroying trust between countries. ..."
"... Nice article, however I tend to disagree partially on the last part, the US administration and the alleged rebels are two faces of the same coins, rebels are funded by the administration from various sources and they acr in response to commands from it, see the southern command operations where this approach of command was openly divulged by various reports and accounts. The reason for the Administration to get into Syria was to further weaken the middle eastern countries for a specific and obvious reason, and each strike and wall destroyed goes into this direction..the bigger picture explains it all.. ..."
"... So, as expected, this latest OPCW report will have no effect on the establishment narrative. The good guys vs bad guys scenario is the only approved version, and with no alternative versions being offered in the MSM, it is the one that the most people will believe. ..."
"... I suspect some of the stupidest staged events are just experiments to monitor how many people will simply buy anything. ..."
Jul 08, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Syria - OPCW Issues First Report Of 'Chemical Weapon Attack' in Douma

On April 7 2018 Syrian 'rebels' claimed that the Syrian government used chlorine gas and Sarin in an attack on the besieged Douma suburb near the Syrian capital Damascus. They published a series of videos which showed the dead bodies of mainly women and children.

During the night the incident allegedly happened Douma was hit with artillery and air strikes in retaliation for earlier deadly attacks by some 'rebels' splinter groups on Damascus city. Jaish al-Islam, the main 'rebel' group in Douma, had already agreed to leave towards Idleb governorate.

The claim of the 'chemical attack' was made shortly after U.S. President Trump had announced that he wanted U.S. troops to leave Syria. It was designed to "pull him back in" which it indeed did.

Moon of Alabama published several pieces on the issue:

It seemed obvious from the very first claims of the 'gas attack' that it did not happen at all. The Syrian government had no motive to use any chemical weapon or an irritant like chlorine in Douma. It had already won. The incident was obviously staged, like others before it, to drag the U.S. into a new attack on Syria.

Even a prominent opposition outlet said that no 'chemical attack' had taken place. As noted on April 9:

Interestingly the MI6 outlet in Coventry, the Syrian Observatory For Human Rights (SOHR), does not confirm a 'gas' incident. In its version of events some 40 people died after their shelter collapsed:

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights issued a higher death toll, saying at least 80 people were killed in Douma, including around 40 who died from suffocation. But it said the suffocations were the result of shelters collapsing on people inside them.

Main stream media, which have quoted SOHR for years, now ignore it and report of a 'chemical attack' as if it were a proven reality.

The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) send a Fact Finding Mission (FFM) to Douma and investigated the incident. Today it published an interim report and some technical results:

OPCW designated labs conducted analysis of prioritised samples. The results show that no organophosphorous nerve agents or their degradation products were detected in the environmental samples or in the plasma samples taken from alleged casualties. Along with explosive residues, various chlorinated organic chemicals were found in samples from two sites, for which there is full chain of custody. Work by the team to establish the significance of these results is on-going. The FFM team will continue its work to draw final conclusions.

The "Sarin" organophosphate use the 'rebels' claimed is thereby debunked. No degradation products of such chemicals were found. The "various chlorinated organic chemicals" are unsurprising. Chlorine is widely used for water purification and cleaning and "chlorinated organic chemicals" will be found in any household.

In the technical notes of the OPCW report note that one of its laboratory found "dichloroacetic acid", "trichloroacetic acid", "chloral hydrate", "trichlorophenol" and "chlorphenol" in some of the samples its fact finding mission took at the claimed incident sites. These are all substances that are no surprise in any upbuild environment and especially within any home. Dichloroacetic acid" is for example "a trace product of the chlorination of drinking water". Chloral hydrate is likewise "a minor side-product of the chlorination of water when organic residues such as humic acids are present". The other substances are also not uncommon and of various household uses.

The other OPCW laboratory found only "No CWC-scheduled chemicals" and "2,4,6-trinitrotoluene" residues in the samples. Trinitrotoluene, also known as TNT, is an explosive widely used in military ammunition. The second laboratory does not report the chlorinated organic chemicals the other laboratory found.

The preliminary OPCW report says nothing about the concentrations in which these substances were found. Without knowing the concentrations, which may may be extremely low, one can not come to further conclusion. The report includes none of the witness statements the fact finding mission took. In various TV reports the medical personal of the one hospital involved in the stunt said that none of their patients were affected by chlorine or chemical weapons.

After the 'rebels' claimed the 'chemical attack' and published their staged videos of stacked bodies U.S. President Trump tweeted that he would retaliate for the strike. Politically he could not pull back from that even when Secretary of Defense Mattis voiced his doubts about the 'rebel' claims. Trump attacked Syria with a series of cruise missiles most of which were shot down by the Syrian air defense. A civil chemical laboratory was destroyed during the attack but no one was hurt.

The now published preliminary OPCW report reinforces the doubts about the 'rebel' claims. There was no 'chemical attack' in Douma. The incident was staged.

One hopes that Trump has learned from this episode and will in future refrain from violent threats over incidents for which no plausible and vetted evidence is provided.

Posted by b on July 6, 2018 at 03:23 PM | Permalink

Comments


Zanon , Jul 6, 2018 3:57:54 PM | 1

Remember the propaganda in the western media and among politicians, they lied and lied, and people like us here were right in our doubts.

Western media again act as warcriminal psyop agent, not to mention a useful idiot for the terrorists!

Ort , Jul 6, 2018 4:03:05 PM | 2
Thanks for this report, even though in my case you're "preaching to the choir".

I wish I could share your closing optimism: "One hopes that Trump has learned from this episode and will in future refrain from violent threats over incidents for which no plausible and vetted evidence is provided."

Hope springs eternal. But even though I'm not rabidly anti-Trump, I think he will remain unwilling to refrain, or is incapable of refraining, from impulsively responding with bluster, bombast, and chauvinistic bumptiousness when his buttons are pushed, regardless of the validity of the stimulus.

Trump, whose narcissism is second to no one's, is devoid of the introspective humility contemplated by the axiom "Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me"; his ego will not process the possibility that he can ever be fooled.

Alas! Trump is definitely a "Threaten first and ask questions later" kind of guy.

psychohistorian , Jul 6, 2018 4:13:31 PM | 3
Thanks for the report b. I was surfing the net as I prepared a meal and saw that the BBC is pushing this hard.

The BBC is even writing about the April chemical weapon scam as being added proof.....sad

The elite keep trying to start a war with anyone to keep the focus off their failure as the "leaders of the free world" BS. When are the elite going to realize their temper tantrums aren't working?

I hope they don't get their shooting war and I hope their economic war provides their final undoing.....think of the waste of human and other resources over the past 70 years.....let alone the centuries that the private finance/property scam has been going on.

Yag , Jul 6, 2018 4:24:04 PM | 4
And liquid chlorine (household bleach) combined with another common household chemical used around the world will release chlorine gas.
Pnyx , Jul 6, 2018 4:38:34 PM | 5
Still, Ard-Tagesschau says the following (originally in German): "In the battles for the Syrian rebel stronghold Duma, chlorine gas was apparently used in April. The OPCW found traces of this in gas cylinder residues."

Sure enough I agree with you B, but for the MSM the OPCW report reads different.

They cannot admit everything was staged. And the report is not at all clear, so anyone can give it the desired spin.

b , Jul 6, 2018 5:04:07 PM | 6
"The OPCW found traces of this in gas cylinder residues." Claiming that the OPCW found "traces of chlorine" is like claiming one found "traces of oxygen" or "traces of hydrogen" when one found water (H2O).

The occurrence of a basic element in a compound is not a "trace" of the basic element. That's chemistry 001. Journalists nowadays seem to lack most basics of higher education.

Hmpf , Jul 6, 2018 5:14:09 PM | 7
@5 Pynx

They didn't find anything relevant. See Appendix 3 of the report. There's no mention of traces of chlorine which I would find hard to believe anyway, they refer to chloride Cl- as in NaCl (table salt) or organic chlorides, of which they do name at least one.

What to expect from the 'Tagesschau' - same old, same old. They're making stuff up again, almost certainly out of willful ignorance and bias.

@6 b
I figure it's even worse than that. They're not even asking the most basic question: Am I a competent person?
My guess is a great many of these folks avoid asking that question on purpose.

Jen , Jul 6, 2018 6:06:36 PM | 8
Pnyx @ 5, B @ 6, Hmpf @ 7:

It would seem that a common (and deliberate) ploy used by the MSM these days is to use journalists with no particular knowledge, experience or insight in an area to write articles that need that knowledge or experience.

The Guardian employs Olivia Solon, a digital journalist (whose specialty is in writing about and recommending particular IT consumer hardware or software products) based in California, with no knowledge or access to knowledge about Syria, its politics or history, to write an article defending the White Helmets and defame the investigative journalists Eva Bartlett and Vanessa Beeley. That practice seems to be par for the course for The Guardian and other print and online newspapers.

Plus The Guardian and others rely on dubious sources like Bellingcat and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, whose credentials are laughable at best, as "experts" in their chosen areas of reporting.

All the Western MSM are now entirely driven by the pursuit of sales revenue and profit and are now no different from outlets peddling entertainment. No surprise really when news media outlets are now owned by the same individuals or corporations that own film studios, TV stations, online media and TV channels, book and comics publishers, and games publishers.

Daniel , Jul 6, 2018 6:35:53 PM | 9
Jen @8. Great point on the strategy of using "journalists" with no background in the topic they're tasked to 'report."

And yes, the corporate MSM is definitely profit-driven. When "news" was separate from "entertainment," there was some free press possible, but once they were combined, any imaginary wall between sponsors and newscasters was removed.

Still, considering who owns the MSM, I'd say their main purpose is not to sell commercials, but to sell the most profitable "products" of their owners.

Here in the US, CBS was founded by William Paley, who had been in charge of radio propaganda for the US Army Office of Psychological Warfare. CBS was owned by Westinghouse, which became the world's largest military contractor during WW II.

NBC was owned by GE, which was also one of the largest military contractors in the world.

Neither CBS and NBC ever generated even 5% of their parent companies revenues. The real profits were in consumer products and war. And so, not just their news, but all of their programming promoted world views that encouraged consumption and war.

Pft , Jul 6, 2018 6:56:32 PM | 10

Almost all reporters covering international news are working for the various government and private intelligence agencies/think tanks and many domestic reporters as well.

This has been the case for over 50 years if not a century. Many of the critical reports are likely written by the agencies/think tanks. Many CIA interns work at MSM for example and reporters are recruited as early as college if not high school through thr corporate government education system.

Everyone likes to supplement their income and many are convinced its their patriotic duty to disseminate propaganda. For some its a chance to join the elite class, even at a low level. Obviously getting the 6-8 corporate entities that own 80% of the media to go along is not difficult especially as those who go rogue will be punished by members of the business roundtable responsible for most advertising , which would of course dry up as punishment

Now monitoring the internet and social media with big data analytics allows almost Total Information Awareness. They can see in real time whats working and to what extent and what is not. They can then fill holes or modify the story as needed. They know they dont need to get 100% believability. This is why they have not shut down dissenting comments. They are useful, for now.

I suspect some of the stupidest staged events are just experiments to monitor how many people will simply buy anything. At some point they will feel confident enough to simulate an alien invasion of beings capable of taking human form. This will necessitate martial law which thw fearful will gladly accept, and a global governement led by the countries with the largest space force. Funny how the US still needs Russian Rockets to launch satellites so its Space Force has a way to go yet. I guess I wont be around for the fun since time is not a friend of old men

Ian , Jul 6, 2018 7:01:03 PM | 11

Regarding comments of journalists, the problem may not always be with them. There have been countless discussions on the influence of intelligence agencies. Most people would choose to do the right thing when given the choice. However, if the choices are following orders or "suicide by nailgun", most people would choose to live another day.

Timothy Hagios , Jul 6, 2018 7:05:17 PM | 12
Pft @ 10

Speaking of experiments to monitor how many people will believe anything, some good claims from the MSM come to mind: 40% of North Koreans are on crystal meth, the Russians killed the last clown in Aleppo, and the Breatharians (people who purportedly survive on only air and sunlight).

james , Jul 6, 2018 7:06:44 PM | 13
thanks b... unfortunately, i tend to see it much like what @8 jen says... these folks are unsure about their next pay check and are happy to write with a chatham house /scl / cambridge analytica slant knowing what is expected of them.. they ask no questions and are unwilling to articulate the false flags that have shaped all this discussion of opcw and chemical attacks in syria.. in this respect i also agree with @5 pnyx... they are unwilling or unable to raise these questions for fear of dismissal.. more and more people recognize what a poor state the msm is in today.. that is my hope anyway..
ben , Jul 6, 2018 7:47:04 PM | 14
b said:"One hopes that Trump has learned from this episode and will in future refrain from violent threats over incidents for which no plausible and vetted evidence is provided."

Unfortunately, probably no one here in the land of theater, will ever hear about this report. As to DJT, he'll do whatever it takes to enhance his appearance with the morons. His learning curve only bends toward his own enhancement. To him and his minions, truth doesn't matter...

Mark2 , Jul 6, 2018 8:19:28 PM | 15
There's unlikely to be any real investigative journalism regarding opcw reports, considering the papers in uk are owned by mega millionaires who profit from war and the Middle East land grab.oil ect. Plus the owners featured largely in the off shore tax haven leaks- relavent here not so much regarding tax, but what that hidden money is invested in, Gun running, slave labour, buying rebels? It's a small world, media moguls own it.
bevin , Jul 6, 2018 8:33:50 PM | 16
Try these Mark2

https://skwawkbox.org/2018/07/07/bbcs-outright-fake-news-tonight-on-douma-chlorine-attack/
https://skwawkbox.org/2018/07/07/video-bbc-news-joins-fake-news-scandal-over-opcws-douma-chlorine-report/

Ghost Ship , Jul 6, 2018 8:43:25 PM | 17
The British-created Anglo-American funded black propaganda organisation, the so-called White Helmets were the primary source for the claims of Sarin use by the SAG in Douma. In as just world, the White Helmets as proven liars would now become international pariahs. That they will still be hailed as heroes in the West and western MSM so just how sick the West and western MSM really are. Perhaps now that the OPCW is free to cast blame for "chemical weapons incidents", they should name and shame the United Kingdom for its black propaganda.
Mark2 , Jul 6, 2018 8:55:31 PM | 18
Thanks Bevin @ 16
I do follow that site, but had'nt looked recently. Really Good, no doubt your aware of 'the canary ' good article on this subject! Both sites I recommend to one and all.
fast freddy , Jul 6, 2018 9:01:43 PM | 19
Well, we all knew a false flag op was pending. So here it is. Also Trump is a POS.
Daniel , Jul 6, 2018 9:24:19 PM | 20
Thanks, bevin for the links to yet another site I'll be trying to find the time to visit. :-)

Both of those articles lay out the BBC BS succinctly and clearly.

Virgile , Jul 6, 2018 10:12:59 PM | 21

When the White Helmets and the rebels staged the 'Douma' chemical attack they were probably expecting that Douma would not be liberated and that no serious inspection would take place to debunk the 'fake' attack. That was bad luck for them. Contrary to the other chemical "attacks" locations, an inspection on location has taken place early enough and the masks may be falling.

james , Jul 6, 2018 10:40:08 PM | 22
@21 virgile... exactly.... all the money the usa/uk have sunk into the white helmets and etc - and very little to nothing to show for it..
chet380 , Jul 6, 2018 10:59:46 PM | 23
@3 Psychohistorian --

Your early call that the MSM would go with the chlorine findings to support the attack is proving true across the board -- there is not a chance that an admission of having been mistaken is going to happen.

adamski , Jul 7, 2018 12:19:58 AM | 24
Chloral Hydrate...?! This was an old school sedative medication. Seems appropriate somehow.
V , Jul 7, 2018 12:36:26 AM | 25
Finally, straight shooting from the OPCW. About time...
Red Ryder , Jul 7, 2018 1:20:06 AM | 26
It is Highly Likely that all the gas attacks were staged as false flags. Exceedingly Likely.
fairleft , Jul 7, 2018 1:37:18 AM | 27
james @13 I think it's clearly true, not just a hope, that fewer and fewer people take the media seriously. Those who still watch mainstream and cable 'news' programs are a pretty small minority, and the MSNBC/FOX side of that is probably acknowledged even by most of its consumers, as 'my side' comfort food rather than 'news' as we used to understand it.

The media's lock-step Western-Empire perspective _is_ frightening, but we also need to remember recent election results that have gone against the empire's wishes. Just a couple days ago in Mexico, for example. Real alternative and real (whether socialist, left, right, or libertarian) populist media is having an impact, I think, and we may be able to turn things around in the West before the next world wars start.

BM , Jul 7, 2018 2:00:06 AM | 28

There are critically important information here from Vanessa Beelley False Flag Fail: How Syrian Civilians Derailed White Helmet 'Chemical' Stunt in Eastern Ghouta that Bernhardt has not mentioned.

Vanessa Beeley interviewed at least two witnesses who - seeing that the government forces were about to liberate Hamouriya village in Douma from the terrorists under whose control they had suffered for 6 years and thereby feeling empowered - on 6th March at 3pm decided to publicly protest against the terrorists by marching through Hamouriya carrying Syrian national flags. They were met by members of the White Helmets and the terrorists, who blamed them explicitly for ruining their chemical weapons false flag.

Critically importantly, the White Helmets had already released news for the claimed false flag that morning and the night before, and they had already collected 30 dead bodies from all over Douma and brought them to the hospital, and had already started filming.

The protest critically negated the propaganda message of the false flag chemical attack - if the Syrian Army had really been dropping chemical weapons on Hamouriya the night before with intent to kill civilian women and children, why would the civilians immediately afterwards start marching through the city carrying Syrian national flags, and having raised the flag at key points in the city? It makes the whole flase flag [even more] implausible. The White Helmets then wrapped one hostage in a Syrian flag and shot him dead as a warning. Fortunately the two witnesses interviewed (and hopefully most of the protesters) were able to escape soon afterwards with the help of the nearby Syrian Army.

The White Helmets specifically stated that the protesters had ruined their chemical attack and ruined their communications with the UN, and that the Americans would not come to their assistance because of it. This incident explains important aspects of the false flag:

1) So close to impending defeat, the terrorists were really desperate to induce the Americans to save them, and really believed they would do so;

2) Having already announced the false flag the previous night and having collected so many dead bodies in preparation, the existence of the protest creates a credibility problem for the terrorists and White Helmets, to which they seem to have responded with various conflicting signals;

3) In particular, the conflicting signals given out by the MI6 proxies SOHR I would read as a damage limitation act specifically in response to the civilian protest;

4) It would appear that MI6 feared news of this protest would be spread, so that they needed to protect their proxies.

Unfortunately, despite this information being published by Vanessa Beeley, I haven't seen any other mention of it. The protesters endangered their lives by this protest, at least one of them [or another hostage? - this is not clear] was shot dead for it, and all of them were sentenced to death. They deserve due publicity for it and it is really important to an understanding of the incident as a whole.

Bernhardt, I hope you will update the article above to include some of Vanessa Beeley's reporting on this incident.

BM , Jul 7, 2018 2:20:22 AM | 29
Bernhardt, I am afraid I don't share your apparent confidence in this OPCW report. It is far too little and lopsided after months of investigation, and appears to be designed to test the waters for a decision confirming that chlorine was used as a weapon, and to coordinate with the MSM to prepare the ground for such a decision. In that case, the MSM reaction to the report is highly consistent with such an objective.

Why did the the report make no caveats about the chlorine compounds, why did they include no data about concentrations, why did they emphasise the chain of custody of the (probably trivial) chrorine compound samples (and only those samples), why no information on witness testimony, why no mention of the witness testimony in the Hague, why mention (totally irrelevant) testimony of alleged witnesses in Turkey and biological samples taken in Turkey for which no plausible chain of custody exists?

Posted by: V | Jul 7, 2018 12:36:26 AM | 25
Finally, straight shooting from the OPCW.
About time...

This report is a scandal, an outrage. This report itself is a false flag, it is designed to appease those observers who know the incident was a false flag by using carefully ambiguous wording, while preparing the ground for a full-blown 99% dishonest and 100% misleading report condemning the Syrian government.

The correct response to this report is very loud and active and persistent protest against it.

The Russians should make very strongly worded complaints and criticisms about it both at the OPCW and at the UN (maybe they have, I wouldn't know).

V , Jul 7, 2018 2:31:49 AM | 30
BM | Jul 7, 2018 2:20:22 AM | 29

You may be correct; we'll see...

Kalen , Jul 7, 2018 3:09:25 AM | 31
For Trump self inflicted ego wound somebody will pay.
V , Jul 7, 2018 7:09:29 AM | 35
Mark2 | Jul 7, 2018 6:29:06 AM | 34

So, following your logic (which I mostly agree); what value/good are elections?
None, near as I can tell.
Time for something new?
But then I digress; what to do about false flag chemo attacks?

If the OPCW can no longer be trusted; then what? The U.S. has done an admirable job of destroying trust between countries.

dfnslblty , Jul 7, 2018 9:25:39 AM | 39
¿Has anyone here read Peter Ford's piece on OPCW? I believe it fits somewhere in the discussion. Unfortunate this choir is so small. Keep writing and Protest Loudly!
Mike , Jul 7, 2018 9:29:28 AM | 40
Hi
Nice article, however I tend to disagree partially on the last part, the US administration and the alleged rebels are two faces of the same coins, rebels are funded by the administration from various sources and they acr in response to commands from it, see the southern command operations where this approach of command was openly divulged by various reports and accounts. The reason for the Administration to get into Syria was to further weaken the middle eastern countries for a specific and obvious reason, and each strike and wall destroyed goes into this direction..the bigger picture explains it all..
Mike , Jul 7, 2018 9:35:41 AM | 41
... to clarify , every "regime" that threatens Israel openly is to be brought down ... Libya, Iraq,, Sudan, Yemen, Syria, Iran , Egypt's Nasser and the list goes on..
bevin , Jul 7, 2018 10:22:39 AM | 42
More on the BBC and this story:
https://skwawkbox.org/2018/07/07/bbc-forced-to-correct-douma-gas-story-after-skwawkbox-exposes-fake-news/

And Craig Murray too:

"Yesterday the OPCW reported that, contrary to US and UK assertions in the UN security council, there was no nerve agent attack on jihadist-held Douma by the Syrian government, precisely as Robert Fisk was execrated by the entire media establishment for pointing out. The OPCW did find some traces of chlorine compounds, but chlorine is a very commonly used element and you have traces of it all over your house.

The US wants your chicken chlorinated. The OPCW said it was "Not clear" if the chlorine was weaponised, and it is plain to me from a career in diplomacy that the almost incidental mention is a diplomatic sop to the UK, US and France, which are important members of the OPCW.

"Trump's reaction to yet more lying claims by the UK government funded White Helmets and Syrian Observatory, a reaction of missile strikes on alleged Syrian facilities producing the non-existent nerve agent, was foolish. May's leap for British participation was unwise, and the usual queue of Blairites who stood up as always in Parliament to support any bombing action, stand yet again exposed as evil tools of the military industrial complex.

"Hillary Clinton, true to form, wanted more aggressive military action than was undertaken by Trump. Hillary has been itching to destroy Syria as she destroyed Libya. Libya was very much Hillary's war and – almost unreported by the mainstream media – NATO bombers carried out almost 14,000 bombing sorties on Libya and devastated entire cities...."

If you put Murray, MoA, The Skwawkbox, Strategic Culture, Dissident Voice and a few of the better aggregators together you've got a better Daily Newspaper than The Guardian or Le Monde ever was, far better.

By the way, unless I'm mistaken (it wouldn't be a first!) Ghandi was asked what he thought about Western Civilisation when he replied that "It would be a good idea". It still is an idea worth looking into. It would look just like socialism.

james , Jul 7, 2018 10:50:35 AM | 43
@27 fairleft.. i hope you are correct on that..

@28 BM... i think it was daniel who left that link here at moa a few days ago.. i read it..

@29 BM.. i tend to agree with you, but see @6 b for more clarity...

@32 pft... it is my observation that the msm in the usa is so usa centric, they know shit about canada, or the rest of the world.. i could be wrong, but that is my general view on what ''americans'' consume for news in the usa.. the indoctrination is heavy.. i would like to think people like @33 V are the norm, but i mostly think people are tuned out of the news - excluding the older generation - above 60 or 70 especially - who still consume the shit via the tv..

@41 mike.. in other words, the usa foreign policy is built around looking after israel.. most here at moa would agree with that.. will the usa ever get it's head out of israels ass? one can hope, lol..

craig murrays post from today that bevin quotes @42.. good comments bevin!

et Al , Jul 7, 2018 10:53:24 AM | 44
Motherboard.com: Japan Just Executed the Leaders of an LSD-Fueled Doomsday Science Cult
https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/gy3xex/what-is-aum-shinrikyo-sarin-attack

####

This one was real, but even the Aum Shinrikyo sect showed all those years ago how how difficult it is to pull off an effective chemical weapons attack, requiring an enclosed space like the metro system. But that's never the point. Instilling mass fear and panic, not to mention being 'news friendly' is what makes such attacks, sponsored proxy false-flag or not, so enduringly popular . To borrow a well known ad phrase ' Once you pop, you can't stop '

Noirette , Jul 7, 2018 11:00:54 AM | 45
Journalists nowadays seem to lack most basics of higher education. b.

Yes + they have zero comprehension of basic numbers. Amazing. (Nobody wants to read my exs..) Nowadays, they are not supposed to have any knowledge whatsoever; they have become scribal hacks, merely write, film, show, expose, what they are told or do haphazard copy-pasta.

They are bought servants, nah compradors, and their presence is completely useless (A.I. and some guidance, input from above by 7 -say- very smart ppl would do the job faster and cheaper, for the whole W world) they are actors whose function is to pretend that a 'fourth estate' is necessary to uncover facts, inform the populace, air dissenting points of view, have debates, and so on Lies.

(comes to mind, book https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Udo_Ulfkotte)

Aware they are past their sell-date, one can smell the desperation. The reaction is to become more subservient, toe the line, preserve what can be, become more in-groupy and shaft colleagues who might stray away from the prescribed hyper-rigid guide-lines. Collectively, they have fantastic potential power and means of control (network savvy, present at the switches, etc.) but they are so dumbed down and terrified of status and monetary loss they are like deer caught in the headlights, to stay on track they secretly pray at dawn, conjure the fates, or whatever. The mansion with pool, the ginormous mortgage, Junior, etc. in the US. In France, the monetary aspect is less vital; being excluded from the movers and shakers, the in-ppl, the heady, sexy, wonderful Parisian life.. no.. no.. help

Part of how a 'post-truth' environment comes about. The other driver is the underlying aim, i.e. the imposition of one narrative over another, the Rovian creation of realities which can only be managed by wielding power violent enough to make the 'other - the people - the adversary' accept and bow down to the proffered narrative, and never object, call out the lies. Using this template requires careful calculations which, it appears, have gone off kilter in the US.

Maybe one should consider that there were never any Chem-WMD attacks in Syria at all (pace Seymour Hersh, heh, but that is a personal beef of mine..) - there are always limited hangout ppl who try to cobble up one narrative with another and make a living out o that.

Curtis , Jul 7, 2018 11:10:52 AM | 46
So far, I'm seeing BBC (as above), al Jazeera, ABC, Reuters, Qatar Tribune twisting the report to say it was a Chlorine attack. PressTV, RT, and Sputnik News say the report clears SAA.
Rob , Jul 7, 2018 1:36:25 PM | 50
And then there's this: https://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2018/07/06/world/europe/06reuters-syria-crisis-chemicalweapons.html
and this: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2018/06/25/world/middleeast/syria-chemical-attack-douma.html
both from the New York Times.

The latter is an absurd "virtual crime scene" in which crack reporters claim to prove that the Syrian government used chemical weapons on their own people.

So, as expected, this latest OPCW report will have no effect on the establishment narrative. The good guys vs bad guys scenario is the only approved version, and with no alternative versions being offered in the MSM, it is the one that the most people will believe.

Mark2 , Jul 7, 2018 2:24:33 PM | 55
Den Kelley Abe @ 53

O k see if I can help, kind of kill or cure! The shock to us all may be to much ! There is no squirrel ! They made it up, yes I know it's kind of tuff !we all looked for a squirrel they distracted us. There was no people poisoned by Russians in Salisbury, Amesbury the chlorine attack in Syria yes made up.What the tv and papers said was a lie, to program us all like a laptop !!!

Whilst we were out squirrel huntin, they got through half of world 3 we never noticed. They formed a dictatorship. Sold all your urban buildings services and council houses to one an other. And devalued us all by about 60% But i'l go easy for now. Couse from there on things went down hill !!! Warm regards

Patrick Armstrong , Jul 7, 2018 7:14:13 PM | 61
By the way, I read somewhere recently that Chlorine rapidly degrades Sarin and therefore no one would use them together. But I can't find the reference now. Can anybody help?
fast freddy , Jul 7, 2018 8:12:38 PM | 62
47. hrc = Bloodthirsty killer; sociopath coming out the gate. Likewise. POS. Trump was not a mass murderer until a couple months in. Didn't take him long to join the club.
Guerrero , Jul 7, 2018 8:43:14 PM | 63
Posted by: Jen | 8Pnyx @ 5, B @ 6, Hmpf @ 7:
It would seem that a common (and deliberate) ploy used by the MSM these days is to use journalists with no particular knowledge, experience or insight in an area to write articles that need that knowledge or experience.

I wonder if these "news reporters" were not selected based upon their "sex appeal" to a superior?

Posted by: Pft | @10

I suspect some of the stupidest staged events are just experiments to monitor how many people will simply buy anything.

I agree. These zany false flag events might be designed to map the approach to an asymptote .

(In analytic geometry, an asymptote (/ˈæsɪmptoʊt/) of a curve is a line such that the distance between
the curve and the line approaches zero as one or both of the x or y coordinates tends to infinite stupidity)

[Jul 03, 2018] 'Propaganda organization': White Helmets 'engage in anti-Assad activities' author Sy Hersh

Jul 03, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

richardstevenhack a day ago Must see interview with Sy Hersh, investigative reporter. [SPOILER: He does NOT talk about the infamous tape about Seth Rich.]

'Propaganda organization': White Helmets 'engage in anti-Assad activities' – author Sy Hersh

Play Hide

https://cdn.embedly.com/widgets/media.html?src=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fembed%2FvPRagJKxED4%3Ffeature%3Doembed&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DvPRagJKxED4&image=https%3A%2F%2Fi.ytimg.com%2Fvi%2FvPRagJKxED4%2Fhqdefault.jpg&key=21d07d84db7f4d66a55297735025d6d1&type=text%2Fhtml&schema=youtube

Sy has a new book out called "Reporter" A Memoir" which is mostly autobiographical about his career as a reporter, with references to his My Lai massacre reporting, his start with the Chicago papers as a crime reporter, and later experiences.

Very interesting comments on My Lai, on the Syrian war and the chemical attack incidents. He has pretty much nothing to say about the British Skripal incident except that he's been told by people in the US that Skripal was reporting to one of Brit intelligence agencies on Russian Mafia activity in Europe - which he says pretty much indicates who might have wanted to poison Skripal.

[Jun 21, 2018] The NYT's front page propaganda piece on the Ghouta chemical attack

Jun 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Hey B please parse the NYT's front page propaganda piece on the Ghouta chemical event in today's paper "Horrific Details on Syria Chemical Attacks Left Out, for Now, From U.N. Report".

Posted by: Jason | Jun 21, 2018 2:22:19 PM | 1

[Jun 16, 2018] White Helmets A tool for 'regime change' in Syria that's too important to stop funding

Notable quotes:
"... "The Pentagon planners have probably finally realized just how important the White Helmets are to the regime change operation," ..."
"... "The fact that they have been so successful in proving fake imagery and fake evidence just means that they can be relied upon whenever there is a need for a pretext for another missile attack or even a full-scale invasion." ..."
Jun 16, 2018 | www.rt.com

Washington's decision to resume funding for White Helmets after a brief freeze highlights how important the controversial group is for the US-promoted regime-change agenda, journalists and Syrian conflict observers have told RT. "The Pentagon planners have probably finally realized just how important the White Helmets are to the regime change operation," Mike Raddie, co-editor of BSNews and an anti-war activist, told RT. "The fact that they have been so successful in proving fake imagery and fake evidence just means that they can be relied upon whenever there is a need for a pretext for another missile attack or even a full-scale invasion."

The anti-war activist recalled how the so-called Syria Civil Defence units, better known as the White Helmets, have been instrumental in the justification of the US strikes on Syria in April of 2017, and the trilateral strikes by the UK, France, and the US in April 2018.

[Jun 13, 2018] How False Flag Operations Are Carried Out Today by Philip M. GIRALDI

Highly recommended!
When the media is controlled by people responsible for false flag operation chances to use investigation to discredit this false flag operation, no matter how many evidence they have is close to zero
In other word false flag operation is perfect weapon for the "sole superpower" and due to this status entail very little risks.
Notable quotes:
"... Today's false flag operations are generally carried out by intelligence agencies and non-government actors including terrorist groups, but they are only considered successful if the true attribution of an action remains secret. ..."
"... False flags can be involved in other sorts of activity as well. The past year's two major alleged chemical attacks carried out against Syrian civilians that resulted in President Donald Trump and associates launching 160 cruise missiles are pretty clearly false flag operations carried out by the rebels and terrorist groups that controlled the affected areas at the time. ..."
"... Because the rebels succeeded in convincing much of the world that the Syrian government had carried out the attacks, one might consider their false flag efforts to have been extremely successful. ..."
"... The remedy against false flag operations such as the recent one in Syria is, of course, to avoid taking the bait and instead waiting until a thorough and objective inspection of the evidence has taken place. The United States, Britain and France did not do that, preferring instead to respond to hysterical press reports by "doing something." If the U.N. investigation of the alleged attack turns up nothing, a distinct possibility, it is unlikely that they will apologize for having committed a war crime. ..."
"... The other major false flag that has recently surfaced is the poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury England on March 4 th . Russia had no credible motive to carry out the attack and had, in fact, good reasons not to do so. ..."
"... Unfortunately, May proved wrong and the debate ignited over her actions, which included the expulsion of twenty-three Russian diplomats, has done her severe damage. Few now believe that Russia actually carried out the poisoning and there is a growing body of opinion suggesting that it was actually a false flag executed by the British government or even by the CIA. ..."
"... The lesson that should be learned from Syria and Skripal is that if "an incident" looks like it has no obvious motive behind it, there is a high probability that it is a false flag. ..."
Apr 26, 2018 | www.strategic-culture.org

False Flag is a concept that goes back centuries. It was considered to be a legitimate ploy by the Greeks and Romans, where a military force would pretend to be friendly to get close to an enemy before dropping the pretense and raising its banners to reveal its own affiliation just before launching an attack. In the sea battles of the eighteenth century among Spain, France and Britain hoisting an enemy flag instead of one's own to confuse the opponent was considered to be a legitimate ruse de guerre , but it was only "honorable" if one reverted to one's own flag before engaging in combat.

Today's false flag operations are generally carried out by intelligence agencies and non-government actors including terrorist groups, but they are only considered successful if the true attribution of an action remains secret. There is nothing honorable about them as their intention is to blame an innocent party for something that it did not do. There has been a lot of such activity lately and it was interesting to learn by way of a leak that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) has developed a capability to mimic the internet fingerprints of other foreign intelligence services. That means that when the media is trumpeting news reports that the Russians or Chinese hacked into U.S. government websites or the sites of major corporations, it could actually have been the CIA carrying out the intrusion and making it look like it originated in Moscow or Beijing. Given that capability, there has been considerable speculation in the alternative media that it was actually the CIA that interfered in the 2016 national elections in the United States.

False flags can be involved in other sorts of activity as well. The past year's two major alleged chemical attacks carried out against Syrian civilians that resulted in President Donald Trump and associates launching 160 cruise missiles are pretty clearly false flag operations carried out by the rebels and terrorist groups that controlled the affected areas at the time. The most recent reported attack on April 7th might not have occurred at all according to doctors and other witnesses who were actually in Douma. Because the rebels succeeded in convincing much of the world that the Syrian government had carried out the attacks, one might consider their false flag efforts to have been extremely successful.

The remedy against false flag operations such as the recent one in Syria is, of course, to avoid taking the bait and instead waiting until a thorough and objective inspection of the evidence has taken place. The United States, Britain and France did not do that, preferring instead to respond to hysterical press reports by "doing something." If the U.N. investigation of the alleged attack turns up nothing, a distinct possibility, it is unlikely that they will apologize for having committed a war crime.

The other major false flag that has recently surfaced is the poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury England on March 4th. Russia had no credible motive to carry out the attack and had, in fact, good reasons not to do so. The allegations made by British Prime Minister Theresa May about the claimed nerve agent being "very likely" Russian in origin have been debunked, in part through examination by the U.K.'s own chemical weapons lab. May, under attack even within her own party, needed a good story and a powerful enemy to solidify her own hold on power so false flagging something to Russia probably appeared to be just the ticket as Moscow would hardly be able to deny the "facts" being invented in London. Unfortunately, May proved wrong and the debate ignited over her actions, which included the expulsion of twenty-three Russian diplomats, has done her severe damage. Few now believe that Russia actually carried out the poisoning and there is a growing body of opinion suggesting that it was actually a false flag executed by the British government or even by the CIA.

The lesson that should be learned from Syria and Skripal is that if "an incident" looks like it has no obvious motive behind it, there is a high probability that it is a false flag. A bit of caution in assigning blame is appropriate given that the alternative would be a precipitate and likely disproportionate response that could easily escalate into a shooting war.

Tags: CIA

[May 14, 2018] After US administration announced that America would no longer be funding the white helmets propaganda outfit in the UK parliament an opposition member of parliament was practically foaming at the mouth with rage and demanded of prime minister Mrs May that the UK would be continuing to fund the white helmets

Notable quotes:
"... When she assured him that the UK was fully behind the white helmets and that funding would remain in place, there was a cheer from around the house. I'm amazed that Bolton allowed the administration to cut off funding when even the UK idiots in parliament want to fund the propaganda arm of the head choppers. ..."
May 14, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Posted by: john wilson | May 12, 2018 8:06:41 AM | 7

The question we all want to know is, did Trump appoint lunatic Bolton entirely of his own volition, or was he forced to appoint this psychopath? The reach of the US deep state seems to be limitless. A curious thing happened the other day when someone in the US administration announced that America would no longer be funding the white helmets propaganda outfit. Over here in the UK parliament an opposition member of parliament was practically foaming at the mouth with rage and demanded of prime minister Mrs May that the UK would be continuing to fund the white helmets.

When she assured him that the UK was fully behind the white helmets and that funding would remain in place, there was a cheer from around the house. I'm amazed that Bolton allowed the administration to cut off funding when even the UK idiots in parliament want to fund the propaganda arm of the head choppers.

[May 12, 2018] A curious thing happened the other day when someone in the US administration announced that America would no longer be funding the white helmets propaganda outfit. Over here in the UK parliament an opposition member of parliament was practically foaming at the mouth with rage and demanded of prime minister Mrs May that the UK would be continuing to fund the white helmets.

Notable quotes:
"... When she assured him that the UK was fully behind the white helmets and that funding would remain in place, there was a cheer from around the house. I'm amazed that Bolton allowed the administration to cut off funding when even the UK idiots in parliament want to fund the propaganda arm of the head choppers. ..."
May 12, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Posted by: john wilson | May 12, 2018 8:06:41 AM | 7

The question we all want to know is, did Trump appoint lunatic Bolton entirely of his own volition, or was he forced to appoint this psychopath? The reach of the US deep state seems to be limitless. A curious thing happened the other day when someone in the US administration announced that America would no longer be funding the white helmets propaganda outfit. Over here in the UK parliament an opposition member of parliament was practically foaming at the mouth with rage and demanded of prime minister Mrs May that the UK would be continuing to fund the white helmets.

When she assured him that the UK was fully behind the white helmets and that funding would remain in place, there was a cheer from around the house. I'm amazed that Bolton allowed the administration to cut off funding when even the UK idiots in parliament want to fund the propaganda arm of the head choppers.

[Apr 30, 2018] Tracing the Rush to War by Craig Murray

Notable quotes:
"... Today, Theresa May is claiming -astonishingly – that the UK attack on Syria is "to deter chemical weapons attacks in Syria and the UK". I don't think the motive for a Skripal false flag could be more starkly demonstrated. ..."
"... It is also worth noting that the most ardent supporters of this military action, outside Saudi Arabia and Israel, are the Blairites in the UK and the Clinton Democrats in the USA. The self-described "centrists" are actually the unhinged extremists in today's politics. ..."
"... This attack on Syria is, beyond doubt, a huge success for the machinations of Mohammed Bin Salman. Please do read my post of 8 March which sets out the background to his agenda, and I believe is essential to why we find our nations in military action again today. Despite the fact the vast majority of the people do not want this ..."
Apr 30, 2018 | www.unz.com

April 14th • Just Who's Pulling the Strings?

March 4 2018 Sergei and Yulia Skripal are attacked with a nerve agent in Salisbury

March 6 2018 Boris Johnson blames Russia and calls Russia "a malign force"

March 7 2018 Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman of Saudi Arabia arrives in London for an official visit

March 13 2018 Valeri Gerasimov, Russian Chief of General Staff, states that Russia has intelligence a fake chemical attack is planned against civilians in Syria as a pretext for US bombing of Damascus, and that Russia will respond militarily.

March 19 2018 Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman of Saudi Arabia arrives in Washington for an official visit

April 8 2018 Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman of Saudi Arabia arrives in Paris for an official visit

April 8 2018 Saudi funded jihadist groups Jaysh al Islam and Tahrir al-Sham and UK funded jihadist "rescue group" The White Helmets claim a chemical weapons attack occurred in their enclave of Douma the previous day – just before its agreed handover to the Syrian army – and blame the Syrian government.

April 11 2018 Saudi Arabia pledges support for attack on Syria

April 14 2018 US/UK/French attack on Syria begins.

I have always denied the UK's claim that only Russia had a motive to attack the Skripals. To denigrate Russia internationally by a false flag attack pinning the blame on Russia, always seemed to me more likely than for the Russians to do that to themselves. And from the start I pointed to the conflict in Syria as a likely motive. That puts Saudi Arabia (and its client jihadists), Saudi Arabia's close ally Israel, the UK and the USA all in the frame in having a powerful motive in inculcating anti-Russian sentiment prior to planned conflict with Russia in Syria. Any of them could have attacked the Skripals.

Today, Theresa May is claiming -astonishingly – that the UK attack on Syria is "to deter chemical weapons attacks in Syria and the UK". I don't think the motive for a Skripal false flag could be more starkly demonstrated.

We do not yet know how many children and other civilians have died so far in what the media always pretend are magically "pinpoint" attacks on Syria. Denying the "collateral damage" is part of the neo-con playbook. The danger is that they will not stop but continue to push, testing how far they can go in weakening Syrian government forces to promote their jihadist allies on the ground, before they spark a real Russian reaction. That way madness lies.

It is also worth noting that the most ardent supporters of this military action, outside Saudi Arabia and Israel, are the Blairites in the UK and the Clinton Democrats in the USA. The self-described "centrists" are actually the unhinged extremists in today's politics.

This attack on Syria is, beyond doubt, a huge success for the machinations of Mohammed Bin Salman. Please do read my post of 8 March which sets out the background to his agenda, and I believe is essential to why we find our nations in military action again today. Despite the fact the vast majority of the people do not want this

[Apr 29, 2018] Macron and Syria

Support of Trump strikes after false flag in Douma characterizes him as neocon and imperialist.
Notable quotes:
"... I know nothing of France, but that Macron fellow seems to be a pure-blooded little weasel. ..."
"... His Rothschild past is well-know, his weasel-like behavior with Trump and Mayhem is typical, he cleverly outmaneuvered the electorate to put his "new party" in power, full of unknowns, after manipulating the weak "socialist" Hollande in the previous government. ..."
"... His domestic policy is to privatise everything, remove the rights workers have gained over the last 70 years, get rid of 120000 jobs (as if others have not tried this for 200 years in France, and it has not helped!) and to do it quickly before people can follow each step. ..."
Apr 29, 2018 | consortiumnews.com
Zachary Smith April 21, 2018 at 12:53 pm

Bashar was compelled to return to Syria and become the nominal political leader after the death of his very tough, ruthless father, Hafez al-Assad.

The other day I saw a passing reference to something I'd never before known – that Richard Nixon paid a state visit to Damascus to see that ruthless father. I was gratified the author mentioned the Bushie use of Syria as a place to torture people. Both the Nixon visit and the routine torture transactions with Syria show that "we" were ok with Syrian dictators – just as we were with all those other dictators coddled by the US.

But when Holy Israel finally gets around to setting up Land Grab #3, suddenly Assad is an obstacle.

France To Revoke Major Award From Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad
Briana Koeneman , Katherine Biek Apr 17, 2018

The Legion of Honor is France's highest award. It's presented to citizens who have "demonstrated outstanding merits in the service of the nation, in a military or a civilian capacity."
.
.
.

The move comes just days after France, Britain and the U.S. launched military strikes on targets in Syria in response to the reported chemical attack. Syria has denied any involvement in the alleged attack.

Genuine Hero Assad suddenly become dirtbag Assad. Except for his success in defeating the latest NATO aggression, what had changed? I know nothing of France, but that Macron fellow seems to be a pure-blooded little weasel.

Reply

rosemerry , April 21, 2018 at 4:41 pm

Micron(sic) has nothing to recommend him but deviousness. His Rothschild past is well-know, his weasel-like behavior with Trump and Mayhem is typical, he cleverly outmaneuvered the electorate to put his "new party" in power, full of unknowns, after manipulating the weak "socialist" Hollande in the previous government.

His domestic policy is to privatise everything, remove the rights workers have gained over the last 70 years, get rid of 120000 jobs (as if others have not tried this for 200 years in France, and it has not helped!) and to do it quickly before people can follow each step.

If the workers do not work together, not only the railways, but the rest of public services, will go and we'll be as bad as the USA, which Micron (sic) obviously admires.

We did not know of his likely international delusions of grandeur, but nothing would surprise me now.

backwardsevolution , April 21, 2018 at 9:18 pm

rosemerry – good post. I read where Macron's election team was composed of some of the same Americans that got Obama elected. They just hopped on a plane and repeated the process in France.

[Apr 29, 2018] Useful idiots for White helmets or dirty accomplices?

Apr 29, 2018 | consortiumnews.com

Stephen J. , April 21, 2018 at 7:04 pm

More info on "media" at link below.
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
ROBERT BRIDGE | 21.04.2018
Useful Idiots? New Yorker Magazine Fails Litmus Test for Media Impartiality on Syrian War

https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2018/04/21/useful-idiots-new-yorker-magazine-fails-litmus-test-for-media-impartiality-syrian-war.html

Stephen J. , April 21, 2018 at 6:54 pm

Interesting article at link below.
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- –
APRIL 20, 2018
A Tale of Two Atrocities: Douma and Gaza

by DOUG NOBLE

The mainstream media once again have enthusiastically endorsed Donald Trump's latest strike on Syria, pulled off without Congressional approval and in blatant violation of US and international law . (emphasis added)

[read more at link below]

https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/04/20/a-tale-of-two-atrocities-douma-and-gaza/

Stephen J. , April 21, 2018 at 6:49 pm

See link below on "media" and "Syria Strikes." Are illegal acts of war "okay"?
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- –
APRIL 18, 2018
Out of 26 Major Editorials on Trump's Syria Strikes, Zero Opposed
ADAM JOHNSON

None of the top 100 newspapers questioned the US's legal or moral right to bomb Syria, and all accepted US government claims to be neutral arbiters of "international law."
[read more at link below]
https://fair.org/home/out-of-20-major-editorials-on-trumps-syria-strikes-zero-opposed/

[Apr 28, 2018] The Syria Narrative Comes Apart With Sen. Richard Black by Ron Paul and Daniel McAdams

Apr 26, 2018 | www.antiwar.com

Strange how the media seems to have moved away from Washington's claims about a "chemical attack" in Syria just as more and more evidence comes to light that seriously undermines the US narrative.

The media is reduced to accusing those who question the narrative -- even with evidence -- of being "conspiracy theorists." Virginia State Senator Richard Black is a retired US military officer and JAG officer with a Purple Heart earned in Vietnam.

He is not buying the mainstream media and Trump Administration claims about the attack. He has followed the Syria war closely and in 2016 even took a trip to Syria. He joins today's Ron Paul Liberty Report to shine the light on the falsehoods being spread:

https://www.youtube.com/embed/nUXDEvt2bfw

Reprinted from The Ron Paul Institute for Peace & Prosperity .

Basu Deb • 10 hours ago

A very rational discussion. The few rational people in the US political arena!

[Apr 27, 2018] @Ian56 full ten minute Skype interview with BBC news night is truly epic.

Apr 27, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

WJ | Apr 27, 2018 12:22:52 AM | 83

For those who have not seen it, @Ian56 full ten minute Skype interview with BBC news night is truly epic.

They keep trying to make a fool of him and he keeps destroying them all.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?feature=youtu.be&v=sFbPG6fOU1M

[Apr 27, 2018] Syrian Forces Discover UK, German-Made Chemical Weapons Depot In Douma

Apr 27, 2018 | muraselon.com

Syria's government forces have discovered a depot of German and UK-manufactured chemical weapons left by terrorists in the town of Douma, a Syrian official says.

"In the depot with chemical weapons left by terrorists in Douma, we have found chemicals from Germany, the United Kingdom, from the Porton-Down laboratory in Salisbury," Russia's Sputnik news agency cited Syria's Deputy Ambassador to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) Ghassan Obaid as saying after a briefing in The Hague on Thursday.

Obaid called on OPCW inspectors to visit the site and expressed hope that the inspection will ultimately prove the allegations against Damascus to be wrong.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova's had said earlier that containers with chlorine and smoke bombs made in the UK and Germany had been discovered in the territories freed from militants in Eastern Ghouta region in the suburb of the capital city of Damascus.

[Apr 27, 2018] White Helmets "gas cilinders" fake now exposed

Apr 27, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

New false-flag operations against Damascus are "possible, since our American partners are once again threatening to take military action against Syria, but we will not allow that," Russia's permanent representative to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Aleksandr Shulgin, said during a press conference in The Hague on Thursday.

"Two gas cylinders, allegedly dropped by the government forces from helicopters, were found in two apartments."

One of the cylinders lacked any makeshift upgrades, such as fins, to make it usable as an aerial munition, and, surprisingly, it was not even deformed .

"It's quite peculiar that the cylinder was not deformed, which doesn't fit its purported fall from a big altitude on concrete floor."

The other cylinder, while fitted with some crude fins, also remained in nearly pristine condition despite its "fall."

"The cylinder has partially retained impermeability and is almost undamaged, which is impossible after a fall from some 2,000 meters , the usual altitude used by the Syrian army helicopters," Kirillov said.

The cylinder was likely hauled by the "authors of the staged video" from outside, the official stated, as "multiple chips and dragging marks at the stairwell" indicated. An apartment below was being used by its owner to breed chickens, and all the livestock miraculously "made through the so-called chemical attack alive," according to Kirillov.

[Apr 27, 2018] Western intelligence and White helmets -- a team working toward common goal

Apr 27, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

jayc | Apr 27, 2018 12:30:57 AM | 84

A reporter for the Tampa Bay Times speaks with Sue Gordon, who is described as principal deputy director of the Office of National Intelligence.
http://www.tbo.com/news/military/macdill/Howard-Altman-Why-we-re-so-sure-Assad-is-to-blame-for-chemical-attacks_167665718

Assignation of guilt for the alleged chemical attack in Douma continues to be based on assumptions on Assad's "intent and capabilities" and the White Helmets videos. Interesting to have such a weak response direct from a senior intelligence bureaucrat.

Her response gets even weaker when asked about claims the videos were faked: "It just doesn't seem consistent with what the rebels would do."

[Apr 27, 2018] The cylinder was likely hauled by the "authors of the staged video" from outside, the official stated, as "multiple chips and dragging marks at the stairwell" indicated. An apartment below was being used by its owner to breed chickens, and all the livestock miraculously "made through the so-called chemical attack alive

Apr 27, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

BM | Apr 27, 2018 11:15:19 AM | 109

Wow! The supposed Douma 'chemical attack' killed so many humans, but the chickens survived unharmed. Luckily the Porton Down assassins were not around to cremate the inconvenient avian witnesses, unlike the Skripal guineapigs and cat.

"Russian experts performed a detailed analysis of the information on the ground," Major-General Igor Kirillov, the head of Russia's Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Protection (RKhBZ) Troops, said. "Two gas cylinders, allegedly dropped by the government forces from helicopters, were found in two apartments."
...
The cylinder was likely hauled by the "authors of the staged video" from outside, the official stated, as "multiple chips and dragging marks at the stairwell" indicated. An apartment below was being used by its owner to breed chickens, and all the livestock miraculously "made through the so-called chemical attack alive," according to Kirillov.

Presentation to OPCW

[Apr 27, 2018] Syria/Russia have assembled a large body of evidence regarding the White Helmets, the staged filming and other falsifications which show convincingly that no chemical attack occurred; Westerm MSM journalists covering Douma should be prosecuted as war criminals in Hague

Notable quotes:
"... Now giving odds on the OPCW report being "inconclusive" --- if I were planning a campaign of fake chemical attacks I would first want to be sure my assets were in place at the OPCW. There is reason to assume that every committee and group of the UN is infiltrated with US assets. ..."
"... "France's Ambassador to the OPCW Philippe Lalliot called the display of Syrians in The Hague 'obscene.'" Apparently it is obscene to present evidence but not staged videos with shaving cream sprayed on the faces of dead bodies. ..."
"... Even better is the unintentionally hilarious comment by the U.K. envoy: "The OPCW is not a theater," said Peter Wilson, Britain's envoy to the watchdog in a statement. ..."
"... Syrian dirty war Backfires on International Media i like how Elijah Magnier refers to the msm - "Salafist Wahabist apologists".... think i will use that too.. ..."
"... I thought western media had sunk as low as it could go until I seen the MSM articles on the witnesses from Douma that are appearing at the Hague. The witnesses are termed 'unidentified people', even though the boy and the doctor, and perhaps several others appeared in the white helmet video and all witnesses are named. ..."
Apr 27, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Babyl-on | Apr 26, 2018 12:35:35 PM | 2

Syria/Russia have assembled a large body of evidence regarding the White Helmets, the staged filming and other falsifications which show convincingly that no chemical attack occurred.

Now giving odds on the OPCW report being "inconclusive" --- if I were planning a campaign of fake chemical attacks I would first want to be sure my assets were in place at the OPCW. There is reason to assume that every committee and group of the UN is infiltrated with US assets.

Mike Maloney , Apr 26, 2018 12:43:26 PM | 6

A sweet headline from Reuters: " Russia presents unharmed Syrians at OPCW, Western allies stay away .

"France's Ambassador to the OPCW Philippe Lalliot called the display of Syrians in The Hague 'obscene.'" Apparently it is obscene to present evidence but not staged videos with shaving cream sprayed on the faces of dead bodies.

nhs , Apr 26, 2018 12:46:27 PM | 9
White Propaganda and Perception Management: the origins of 'chemical weapons' false flag operations
WJ , Apr 26, 2018 1:01:59 PM | 11
Mike Maloney @6,

Even better is the unintentionally hilarious comment by the U.K. envoy: "The OPCW is not a theater," said Peter Wilson, Britain's envoy to the watchdog in a statement.

james , Apr 26, 2018 5:14:14 PM | 38
Syrian dirty war Backfires on International Media i like how Elijah Magnier refers to the msm - "Salafist Wahabist apologists".... think i will use that too..
karlof1 , Apr 26, 2018 5:12:23 PM | 37
Sid2 @28--

911's been discussed here from time-to-time. Most agree it's a major false flag. I see it as the implementation of the Operation Northwoods plan from 1962 (2 smallish pdfs) for essentially the same geopolitical goals. Such discussions have previously occurred on Open Threads where they belong. As you see, I really don't have anything to discuss as I've already made my conclusion and judgement.

mk , Apr 26, 2018 6:02:21 PM | 41
karlof1 @37

false flag attack... very interesting to see now how the Skripal affair and the Douma incident are going to develop. Because if, for instance, Douma will be widely (i. e. in Western societies) acknowledged as a false flag attack, and we are pretty close to that - then this opens a door for the acceptance of former false flag attacks (the so-called conspiracy theories).

Don't want to go into detail here, but I'm convinced that the majority of terror attacks in the West in the last twenty years were false flag, i.e. the official story doesn't reflect what really happened.
From my own research I can say that for 9/11, London 7/7, Boston 2013, Nizza 2016, Berlin 2016.

Again, I don't want to discuss that stuff here. My point is that the unmasking of Douma as a staged event, or Skripal as false flag, could make these former staged events fall like domino pieces. Not in days or weeks, but over the years.

Peter AU 1 , Apr 26, 2018 7:29:31 PM | 58
I thought western media had sunk as low as it could go until I seen the MSM articles on the witnesses from Douma that are appearing at the Hague. The witnesses are termed 'unidentified people', even though the boy and the doctor, and perhaps several others appeared in the white helmet video and all witnesses are named.

[Apr 27, 2018] Douma false flag created possibilities for Syria to acquire the S300 and deny US and Israeli air supremacy.

Apr 27, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Posted by: Harry Law | Apr 26, 2018 6:32:50 PM | 47

That US,UK and French aggression on 14th April which caused the loss of 3 buildings and no casualties could go down as the biggest own goal of this war on Syria. Now it is possible that Syria will acquire the S300 and deny US and Israeli air supremacy.

They can stop Israeli Jets lobbing missiles from Lebanese airspace, they also have the range to lock on to Israeli Jets taking off from Israeli airfields. Israel is very concerned, as they should be. The Syrians should thank Trump, May and Macron.

[Apr 27, 2018] Russia "will not allow" another US attack on Syria premised on a false flag event...

Apr 27, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

WJ | Apr 26, 2018 8:35:12 PM | 62

Russia "will not allow" another US attack on Syria premised on a false flag event...

That's a strong statement if accurate, and represents a tightening of the noose around US freedom of action in theatre.
https://www.rt.com/news/425256-russia-wont-allow-attack-syria/

[Apr 27, 2018] It seems to me that the reason none of the MSM are doing any investigating/reporting of the Salisbury affair, apart from official handouts, is that the government have slapped a D-Notice over the whole incident and it is not possible to report that a notice has been issued.

Apr 27, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Lil Bub , Apr 26, 2018 6:22:01 PM | 44

Sid2 , Apr 26, 2018 6:25:43 PM | 45
On the Skripal affair, the best information I've found (trying to keep up) is at Craig Murray's blog (the following page as the most recent discussion):

As with this interesting comment:

Clive P April 22, 2018 at 12:29

I have been reading the blogs for some time but this is my first post. Like Craig I was a senior civil servant but in the ministry of defence not the fco. I had plenty of dealings with all three intelligence agencies. It seems to me that the reason none of the MSM are doing any investigating/reporting of the Salisbury affair, apart from official handouts, is that the government have slapped a D-Notice over the whole incident and it is not possible to report that a notice has been issued.

Here is another theory as to what happened. The Russians pardoned Skripal and allowed him to leave (spy agencies have an understanding that agents will always be swapped after an interval – it's the only protection they have and helps recruitment). In the UK Skripal would have been thoroughly debriefed by MI6 and MI5 (his ex-handler lives near Salisbury). If at some point they discovered that Skripal was giving them false information, perhaps he was told to do so by the FSB as a condition of his release, lives may have been endangered/lost. If he also was also involved in the 'golden showers' dossier then elements in the US would have a reason to act as well. The whole incident was an inside job not to kill him, hence the use of BZ, but to give him a warning and a punishment. The whole thing is being treated as though the authorities know exactly what went on but have to cover it up.

A D notice is subsequently clarified in the thread as classified/off limits by the UK government.

Sorry, not clear on the BZ reference, as to what this means.

Would appreciate additional links with info from recent days.

[Apr 26, 2018] By over a year in office, Agent Orange proved that (A) He lack experience of dealing with the key issues arising in his new job, and (B) he does not understand the quote from the other Donald who isn't a duck about "known unknowns"

This looks like taken directly from Godfather. "Mafia style governance" in other words ;-)
Notable quotes:
"... The experts just make it up, the pols know this but unless they can prove the military bosses are lying, they have to go along with it. ..."
"... We, us the people, we die, that is our role ..."
"... 'Not in my name': Galloway calls on British public to reject calls for Syria military action: https://www.rt.com/uk/423805-galloway-syria-war-uk/ ..."
"... But who cares about us? Now is Trump and the brainwashed journalists that want a war, nothing seems to be able to stop and reverse this sickness. ..."
Apr 11, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Debsisdead | Apr 11, 2018 8:47:26 AM | 56

By now 18 months in office, agent orange will have reached the same SOP as everyone else who has political power does when
they are dealing with circumstances where A) they lack much experience of dealing with the issue, and B) there are to quote that other donald who isn't a duck. "There are many 'known unknowns'".

That is you must defer to the 'experts' not because you necessarily believe their assessment to be correct, but because they are the types whose job it is to make such assessments. So that if things do go tits up, king mandarin cannot be blamed. He was acting upon "the best advice available at the time" & if things work out then the trumpet can trumpet his genius strategy. If they don't work out that's tough, but the bossfella did his/her part.

This has long been held to be the only way an elected leader can survive a war. Everything is a gamble, so unless you really know what you are doing/have great outside the loop intelligence, following the advice of the military bosses is really the only option they can see. They are weak, vain, self-obsessed and incapable of understanding how Jo/Joe Shitkicker feels about stuff.

A couple of examples.

The first worked out OK for humans but bad for the warmongers. When GH Bush snared Iraq into Gulf War 1, the plan had always been to use Iraq's reclamation of their traditional lands from the Anglo American puppets as an excuse to grab all of Iraq - Kuwait's oil was running out, which was why the emir had been siphoning off Iraqi oil in the first place. So the American led band of greedies, crooks & charlatans chased the retreating Iraqis back - bombing shooting and poisoning em with depleted uranium absolutely mercilessly. But for whatever reason (who knows? honour, honesty, maybe even humanity or maybe someone paid him off we will never discover the truth) Norman Schwarzkopf wasn't down with such ruthless murder.

He publicly declared the military objectives had all been met and continuing on wasn't just pointless it was inhumanity approaching a war crime. GH Arsefeatures must have been ropeable, but he knew going against Norm's advice was just too fraught. If anything, absolutely anything went wrong with what was a pretty damned risky plan, as Iraq hadn't been put under siege for long at all before the attack, there were big numbers of Iran/Iraq war veterans - troops who hadn't been deployed in Kuwait waiting in Iraq. Bush would take the fall as he had gone against 'expert' advice. No redemption thatcher style for him, so he declared victory and began the siege which junior tried to finish.

The second example? This is a link to part 17 of a 26 part documentary on the 1914 to 1918 half of the 20th century eurowar. It is made by the bbc, but I hasten to add during an all too brief moment in the 1960's when the BBC had been forced to resile from spewing spurious tales - propaganda, and calling it fact.

If you haven't seen this series I strongly suggest you get a copy and watch it. This is the people who fought, chiefly the shitkickers in the trenches on all sides doing the talking. In addition there is input from the pols' & military bosses via daily journals & diaries.

Episode 17 is about Ypres which was a piece of Belgian western front which protruded east across the line the Austro/German troops occupied, aka a salient.

The Brits held the western side, Germany the other. By 1917 everyone was well sick of the war and the politicians had begun to distrust the judgement and sometimes the motives of the military. The Battle of the Somme which cost more than a million brit casualties had been fought in the summer of 1916, nothing had been gained. More than a million young men had died for nothing - absolutely fucking nothing. Now that the summer of 1917 was approaching the army wanted another 'offensive'. Ypres was the battlespace they had selected. Once a beautiful town even more striking architecturally than Bruges, Ypres was leveled by the arseholesi - few if any of whom were Belgium.

So all the brit military bosses (army & navy - the airforce hadn't taken off yet [pun alert]) were meeting with all the political leaders in the cabinet room.

Lloyd George, the consummate brit pol of the early 20th century, was Prime Minister and he was extremely skeptical of any big plan, as logic dictated that when both sides were as dug in & evenly matched as the allies & axis were, the chances of either side achieving anything beyond the deaths of another million or two humans were slim as New York model.

Watch the doco - Lloyd explains how Haig and his gang had bundles of colourful maps with arrows pointing every which way, plus a fine art in talking absolute bullshit.

When Lloyd George detects that some of the more gullible pols are lapping up Haig's nonsense, so he interjects with his doubts - that any further "send em over the top" strategies can achieve anything other than the death of millions more humans.

The meeting adjourns for lunch. When they all come back the Sea Lord, Admiral Jellicoe, the man now believed to be responsible for the brit navy's worst maritime disaster ever, the 1916 battle of jutland where 5000 brit sailors were killed in the space of a few hours and Admiral Beatty who was Jellicoe's 2IC was heard to say offhandly "I say, there seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today". Thousands of men die and the elitist prick believes it's time to be droll. Check out pix of Beatty he always wore his naval cap 'rakishly' forever playing the jaunty gentleman sailor.

Anyway Jellicoe whose incompetence as the head of the British Grand Fleet resulted in badly designed ships adopting really dangerous explosive handling practices was so bad the brits had to make him out to be a hero & promoted him to First Sea Lord, pipes up at the Ypres meeting straight after lunch , with the claim that the attack must go ahead because if the Germans keep control of Zeebrugge which is a Belgian port just north of Ypres that was in German hands & was being used as a submarine base, England will face famine and mass starvation within a few months as the navy cannot protect their shipping supplies to england.

It was complete nonsense which Haig and Jellicoe likely dreamed up at lunch. We know it was a crock because Lloyd George was left with no alternative but to approve warmonger/mass murderer Haig's plan. The battle went ahead, another million or so died in what the diggers termed the worst bloody stunt of the war. Long story short; the farmland around Ypres was like Dutch lowland, constructed below sea level. The artillery barrages had wrecked the drainage system and the entire battle space turned to mud blood, and corpses - fall into a shellhole which was easy on the slippery duckboards and you're toast, the mixture of bacteria bubbling away in the Ypres Soup guaranteed that if you could swim with a full pack and gear, any cut or wound would become irretrievably infected. The medics played catch up footy behind gangrene, chopping bits off a bloke until there was nothing left.

These then are the roles:

The experts just make it up, the pols know this but unless they can prove the military bosses are lying, they have to go along with it.

We, us the people, we die, that is our role

ps watch the doco and see how documentaries can be made.

test , Apr 11, 2018 9:12:52 AM | 65

radiator

'Not in my name': Galloway calls on British public to reject calls for Syria military action: https://www.rt.com/uk/423805-galloway-syria-war-uk/

But who cares about us? Now is Trump and the brainwashed journalists that want a war, nothing seems to be able to stop and reverse this sickness.

[Apr 26, 2018] The Skripal case and Douma false flag in Syria are clumsy, amateur attempts to push the US empire into war

Apr 11, 2018 | www.unz.com
Giuseppe , April 10, 2018 at 12:10 pm GMT
I challenge anyone to name a modern war prosecuted by the US government and its allies that did not involve at its root the direct fabrication of blatant lies on enormous levels, both as a casus belli and also to manipulate public opinion in favor of hostilities.

The clandestine activity represented by these *provocations* isn't even good spycraft. The Skripal case and the latest use of chlorine gas in Syria are risible, clumsy, amateur attempts to wangle the empire into war that the callowest rube could see through. And yet, it's working its magic on the media. The politicians, suborned by the war machine, give unanimous bipartisan assent.

What the hell is going on?

JoaoAlfaiate , April 10, 2018 at 12:35 pm GMT
@Giuseppe

Saddam's WMD, Gulf of Tonkin, etc., etc. And now a ridiculous false flag attack in Syria. Did it take place at all? But the narrative is all. The press in the USA is more effectively controlled and conformist than in Germany in the late 1930s and nobody goes around beating up journalists or sending them to a KZ. The Syrian Gov't is winning the civil war, things are going well but what Assad really needs is to have the crap bombed out of his military by Uncle Sam. What transparent bullshit.

[Apr 26, 2018] Real Journalist Shreds CNN On Air Over S-y-r-i-a Coverage

This was a great talk show. Many excellent points made, depicting neoliberal propaganda as "it is". Must see video.
Notable quotes:
"... That's exactly what we did. Cancelled our cable six months ago and joined TYT ..."
"... All corporate media outlets romanticize and support death and destruction because they believe the public loves it. So give em what they want, and corporate media profits skyrocket. Sad and shameful. ..."
Apr 19, 2018 | www.youtube.com

The Jimmy Dore Show , 1 year ago (edited)

Next LIVE Jimmy Dore Show may 1 & May 22nd Get your tickets here: http://bit.ly/2lAFl8h Check Below For The Many Ways You Can Support Our Show:

Yung Progressive , 1 year ago (edited)

I wonder how proud Bernie would be if he watched any of Jimmy Dores videos.. My TOP "Progressives" Bernie/Tulsi/Nina/Jimmy/Ronan but there are PLENTY of other great progressives that I forgot to mention. #Bernie2020 #Tulsi2020 #JusticeDems2018

Orlando Olmo , 1 year ago

Your totally clueless if your only resource is CNN or any other establishment state TV. They are not journalists, they are spokesmen.

C. Binion , 1 year ago

Rachel Maddow is another compromised "journalist" failing to cover Syria. Jimmy, I know you see Maddow the same way I do, so I thought you and your subscribers would want a heads-up on Aaron Mate's April 12, 2017 article at the Intercept, "MSNBC's Rachel Maddow Sees a 'Russia Connection' Lurking Behind Every Corner." The article includes a video showing Maddow repeatedly pounding the drum about alleged Russian influence on Trump.

The Intercept's quantitative study of all 28 Rachel Maddow episodes in the six-week period between February 20 and March 31, showed 53 percent of the broadcasts were Russia-focused segments. Mate points out "the 'above all else" focus on Russia lacks concrete supporting evidence."

The article also mentions Maddow is often dubbed one of the smartest TV journalists, but in my view, if she's so smart, why isn't she honest?

The public doesn't need "smart but unethical" journalists, because they are a dime a dozen. We need news people with astuteness and integrity combined. Some of the world's most destructive people have been brilliant but evil. Anyway, the article is a good read.

bubba r , 1 year ago

Can't we show some pictures of the people WE kill, the children WE kill when we drop our bombs? Someone pointed out how they show pictures of our missles when they are launched and none of the damage we do. And we only show pictures of the dead people when THEY drop bombs, etc. Shouldn't we also show the people we kill.

Emy Sanchez , 1 year ago

That's exactly what we did. Cancelled our cable six months ago and joined TYT, and support several independent youTubers including Jimmy Dore. We need independent media especially now

Rick Blanton , 1 year ago

The American public, by in large, have no sympathy for the innocent civilians who suffer the horrific bombing attacks carried out by the U.S. Military. All corporate media outlets romanticize and support death and destruction because they believe the public loves it. So give em what they want, and corporate media profits skyrocket. Sad and shameful.

[Apr 25, 2018] The British dishonorable military officers run White Helmet rank-and-file: Any Qs about le Mesurier' and Tilley' devotion to militant Islamists and fanatical Israelis when good money is paid for the devotion?

Apr 25, 2018 | www.unz.com

annamaria , April 25, 2018 at 5:39 pm GMT

Know your war criminals, particularly the dishonorable military officers: "UNMASKING THE WHITE HELMETS," http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2018/04/harper-unmasking-the-white-helmets.html

-- Here is the terrorist camp in Turkey, run by a British officer James le Mesurier:

"James le Mesurier founded both Mayday Rescue and the White Helmets after "retiring" from the British Army and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Mayday Rescue's annual budget is $35 million, with the funds coming from USAID, the UK Conflict Security and Stability Fund, and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. To date, an estimated 3,000 recruits have been through the Mayday Rescue training programs and deployed into 120 different locations in rebel-held parts of Syria."

-- Here is another dishonorable British officer, Paul Tilley:

"Tilley ran British government communications during the Libya invasion, working directly out of 10 Downing Street. In November 2014, soon after le Mesurier was founding Mayday Rescue and the White Helmets, Tilley "retired" from the British service to found the strategic communications firm. Incostrat provides the social media and other communications services for Mayday and the White Helmets."

– Any Qs about le Mesurier' and Tilley' devotion to militant Islamists and fanatical Israelis when good money is paid for the devotion??

[Apr 25, 2018] HARPER UNMASKING THE WHITE HELMETS

Apr 25, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

British government official agencies are the patrons, managers and funders of the White Helmets, who have been the go-to source for the mainstream Western media reporting on the ongoing Syrian war. For good measure, the U.S. State Department's Agency for International Development (USAID) has kicked in $23 million to finance Mayday Rescue, the cutout between the White Helmets and the British Ministry of Defense, the Home Office, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and 10 Downing Street. This is all a matter of public record, yet no Western major media outlet has bothered to include these "data points" in their lavish coverage of the White Helmets.

Mayday Rescue was founded by James le Mesurier, who founded both Mayday Rescue and the White Helmets after "retiring" from the British Army and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Mayday Rescue has its headquarters in Istanbul, Turkey, where it runs a training program for the White Helmet recruits. Mayday Rescue's annual budget is $35 million, with the funds coming from USAID, the UK Conflict Security and Stability Fund, and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. To date, an estimated 3,000 recruits have been through the Mayday Rescue training programs and deployed into 120 different locations in rebel held parts of Syria.

Another element of the British government flowchart backing the White Helmets is the communications and media firm Incostrat, founded by Paul Tilley, another British Army veteran, who ran the Ministry of Defence's Strategic Communications for the Middle East and North Africa. Tilley ran British government communications during the Libya invasion, working directly out of 10 Downing Street. In November 2014, soon after le Mesurier was founding Mayday Rescue and the White Helmets, Tilley "retired" from the British service to found the strategic communications firm. Incostrat provides the social media and other communications services for Mayday and the White Helmets.

All very neat.

In January 2015, the British Ministry of Defence renamed its Security Assistance Group (SAG) the 77th Brigade. The name change was in honor of the legendary World War II era British special warfare operator Orde Wingate, who as a Major General in the British Army founded the 77th Indian Infantry Brigade, which conducted "long-range penetration" operations in the CBI theater. The renamed current 77th Brigade, according to its own website, conducts "non-lethal engagement and legitimate non-military levers as a means to adapt behaviors of opposing forces and adversaries," including information activities and outreach. By its own public description, the 77th Brigade is "an agent of change." They are nowadays referred to as "Twitter Troops" and "Facebook Warriors."


The Beaver , 10 hours ago

Harper,

Another good one on the same topic:

http://www.middleeasteye.ne...

The Guardian revealed it was spending £2.4m ($3.3m) for private contractors to deliver "strategic communications and media operations support to the Syrian moderate armed opposition", in what was described as Britain running a "Free Syrian Army press office".

Jaish al-Islam (Army of Islam), a newly formed coalition of around 50 Islamist factions funded by Saudi Arabia, was one of the groups considered by Britain to be part of the "moderate armed opposition".

blue peacock , 11 hours ago
Why is the British government so into neocon themes or are they merely acting at the behest of our neocons?

The British Deep State clearly have a bee in their bonnet about Putin & Russia. Maybe that's why they acted to take down Candidate Trump during the last election.

Valissa Rauhallinen -> blue peacock , 8 hours ago
The Brits have a long history of antagonistic relations with Russia. The phrase "The Great Game" originally referred British-Russian power ploys in central Asia in the latter half of the 19th century. Pax Americana has "inherited" some aspects of the British Empire and British Imperialism. No wonder the Brits want to play along with us in that area. They have history there. The force of that not to be underestimated.

I bought this book a couple of years ago, but have not done more than skim it yet. The reviews are helpful for getting an idea of what it's about.

The Great Game: The Struggle for Empire in Central Asia, by Peter Hopkis https://www.amazon.com/Grea...

BTW, my current preference is to use the "neocon" label in a more limited fashion referring to those who espouse that philosophy directly. I think most people working for the empire aren't philosophical true believers so much as ambitious opportunists who tend to be flexible in their ideology. After reading more history, I came to develop a fondness for that old fashioned label "imperialist." It explains much on it's own. No extra political ideology is required.

Pat Lang Mod -> Valissa Rauhallinen , 6 hours ago
I use neocon the same way.
Fred S -> blue peacock , 11 hours ago
blue peacock,

"... they acted to take down Candidate Trump during the last election."
That would be the collusion everyone is looking for.

Pat Lang Mod -> Fred S , 4 hours ago
It is very clear that the WH operation is a brain child of the Clinton/Obama regime with British and Saudi participation. The British actually have conducted the operation.
Rob -> blue peacock , 8 hours ago
More to do with Saudi and Arab interests. Doesn't help that they are aligned with Zionists on this matter, but I wouldn't say neocons are the key factor.

As for Russia the obsession mystifies me; Neocons, Rupert Murdoch, exiled oligarchs and associated riffaff in London throwing money around, institutional inertia from the cold war?

Pat Lang Mod -> Rob , 6 hours ago
@Londonbob - There is little doubt that the UK is running these projects with money from USAID (State) and the Saudis.
DianaLC , 5 hours ago
Thank you for this information. I come here often to get a different perspective from what I hear non-stop on popular "news" outlets.

I had this problem when I was teaching research writing. The journalism majors researched only by calling someone to get nice quotations about the "facts"--as their source told them. They did not believe in doing any other sort of research really. Got to beat those deadlines, you know.

robt willmann , 6 hours ago
Good description.
Les Priest , 6 hours ago
Harper,

Orde Wingate!! Wingnut extraordinaire, as only England can produce them. A proto White Zionist & Likudnik. The Israelis see him as almost a founding father! I think there's even a statue. He's put out as a military genius but, really he was one of those special forces types who hover between tactical & operational levels, which disguises the lightweight effect of their operations: Preferably against light opposition. What he set up in the CBI theatre was glamorized, at the time, because the Brits had screwed up the defence of Burma so badly. Britain's fading glory, & the Indian Army's biggest & best operations awaited Slim (General). Read; 'Quartered Safe Out Here'.

kao_hsien_chih -> Les Priest , 4 hours ago
Yup. That was my first reaction: Orde Wingate was practically the original Christian Zionist, a real nutjob in terms of his personal beliefs and politics. Rather telling, if he's seen as the patron saint of the White Helmets.
Adrestia , 7 hours ago
Tomorrow 26-4 the Russians are flying a number of Syrians to the Netherlands for a press conference of the Russian delegation with the OPCW.

We'll see if the Syrians will be able to access the Netherlands. Considering the neocon-puppy-status of our glorious prime-minister (who might have to step-down because of repeatedly lying to parliament) I wouldn't be surprised if this will be refused.

[Apr 25, 2018] The US claim of 100% effectiveness of their weapons system and 0% of the Syrian/Russian systems, this is plainly nonsense.

Apr 25, 2018 | www.unz.com

MarkU , April 25, 2018 at 6:43 am GMT

I can think of two other important questions, what is the point of lying? and who exactly do they think they are fooling?

Firstly it is worth saying that both sides are likely to exaggerate the effectiveness of their systems, deliberately or otherwise. Let us start with the US claim of 100% effectiveness of their weapons system and 0% of the Syrian/Russian systems, this is plainly nonsense. Even with no air defences at all a certain number of malfunctions would be expected to happen. The Syrian/Russian claims are also likely to be wrong, many of the claimed intercepts were just as likely to be malfunctions.

So what is the point of lying?

First off, a reputation for unreliability is bad for sales, pure and simple. Nobody is going to be enthusiastic about spending large amounts of money on stuff that doesn't work very well, this would apply equally to both sides.

Secondly, the appetite of the general public for war in general and superpower confrontation in particular is going to be somewhat diminished if it is perceived that the other side is technologically equal or even superior. This factor is logically going to be more important to the side likely to initiate conflict.

So who do they think they are fooling?

Potential customers for weapons systems are usually not going to be naive enough to take the manufacturers claims at face value, they are likely to employ their own experts to assess the various claims. They will not be completely immune to deception of course.

Each other. Neither side would want their opponents to have the best information available, for obvious reasons. It is notable that both sides appear to have declined to fully commit their latest equipment, the Russians in particular. It is likely that both sides have reasonably good intelligence on what happened, neither side is likely to be fooled easily.

The general public are the most obvious targets of deception and the most easily fooled. It is one thing to risk a superpower conflict when your population in general is confident that you have a clear technological edge and are likely to escape the worst. It would be quite another matter to get the public on board if they believed they were up against a more or less equal opponent and were likely to get thoroughly nuked. Once again this logic applies far more strongly to the side likely to initiate a conflict for they are the ones who must manufacture consent. For this reason it would appear that the Russians have somewhat less motivation to lie than their US counterparts.

Johann , April 25, 2018 at 4:08 pm GMT
@MarkU

They lie because they can and after lying their pathetic lives away they are not even aware that they are lying. Hilary can fall down the steps in front of hundreds of cameras and lie that she did not fall. Joe Biden can lie to a reporter that he graduated number one in his law class and totally ignore the school records that he graduated in the bottom of his law class.

[Apr 25, 2018] Are the Russians Correct by W. Patrick Lang

Notable quotes:
"... The "attack" on Syria had two purposes: a saving of face, and a disposal of old ordnance. ..."
"... I suspect that only Israel had any real interest in saving the face of their hired boogeyman. Trump being a flunky of Israeli, he did what he had to do. ..."
Apr 25, 2018 | www.unz.com

At the same time it is clear that there was an understanding between the governments to insure that Russian red lines were not crossed. The evidence for the Douma gas attack is non-existent. The film evidence has now been thoroughly de-bunked as part of the information operations (propaganda) of the White Helmets scheme funded by the Saudis and largely conducted by the UK info warriors of 77 Regiment. It seems clear that US DoD was not privy to that IO project and for that Reason SECDEF Mattis was blind-sided by the deception. The struck targets (successful or not) have long been known to the US IC as facilities of the former Syrian Government chemical warfare programs. The Russians were told to stay out of those areas and so a reasonable compromise was made with a president easily fooled by social media and under heavy pressure by a population equally easy to deceive.

Nevertheless, most of the missiles failed and that failure must be dealt with.


CanSpeccy , Website April 25, 2018 at 4:46 am GMT

In an age of fake news, fake food, fake sex, Trump has taken the next logical step, by introducing fake war to keep the NeoCon Bastards off his back.
anonymous [107] Disclaimer , April 25, 2018 at 8:26 am GMT
Col. Pat Lang at his best -- explaining how military systems and strategies work.

But Lang wrote: "It seems clear that US DoD was not privy to that IO project and for that Reason SECDEF Mattis was blind-sided by the deception."

That would not have happened if Mattis -- and Trump -- included Phil Giraldi and Unz forum, as well as Lang's own SST in their daily intelligence diet.

Phil Giraldi exposed the White Helmets almost a year ago --

https://www.unz.com/pgiraldi/the-fraud-of-the-white-helmets/

Unz has provided a platform for Ron Paul's Liberty Report interview of Vanessa Beeley's reporting on Syria/White Helmets

http://www.unz.com/video/ronpaullibertyreport_the-ngos-pushing-a-new-syria-war-with-guest-vanessa-beeley/

and for Eva Bartlett's on-the-scenes coverage of White Helmets activities in Syria.

The Corbett Report can be found on the Unz Forum. Corbett painstakingly deconstructed a Guardian hit-piece on Beeley, Bartlett and Tim Anderson, reproducing the emails in which the Guardian journo accused those independent correspondents of collusion with a Russian propaganda effort

https://steemit.com/news/@corbettreport/an-open-letter-to-olivia-solon

Unz Forum also hosts the Jimmy Dore show which amplified a corporate-media interviews of Jeffrey Sachs, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_O2TRzA2ezk , who told (what is presumably) a large audience that US has been engaged in the deliberate destabilization of Syria and killing of Syrian citizens since at least 2012, (and that it should STOP!);

Sachs named Operation Timber Sycamore,

http://www.unz.com/pgiraldi/scarier-than-john-bolton/#comment-2302872

Three Green Berets were killed in Jordan as part of Timber Sycamore http://www.worldinwar.eu/timber-sycamore-the-cias-syrian-regime-change-operation/

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/02/world/middleeast/cia-syria-rebel-arm-train-trump.html?mtrref=www.google.com&gwh=684B48451C194C2DD4F4ACB98226AA8B&gwt=pay

Mattis knew none of this?

m___ , April 25, 2018 at 8:27 am GMT

Media, keeping scores, rigged experiments

.

False flags, needed, on both sides. In the West that means catching of-handed the media, all media, all alternative media, by infusing lies, firehosing bloat, short attention span snippets to decoy and on, nothing yet invented to the rescue. That seems to work still, since the public still baits the flying dung, a given, and the scribes and editors, the graphically endowed complying.

Military back and forth, "arena" sports, pro-wresling, nothing more, nothing much. The better teams can as well play video games to see who "wins". War is essentially obsolete, makes the superstructures of the war machines on all sides obsolete. The main reason is environmental toxicity which blows back with a vengeance, war having no impact on population numbers, war having an impact on migration numbers and directions though. The migration effects of local wasteland wars seems to be interpreted by dumb elites globally as desirable(herding and how to herd large numbers of humanoids), a learning experiment. Our guess, in the long term, an unefficient weapon.

The information interchanges, essentially deciding on the rules of the local experiment, of the major players, open up views on how a global elite can function. For now in the early stages, but since global rule is unavoidable, an encouraging phenomenon.

The back country, our "gens de rien", our "deplorables" yet do not, will never, understand what is driving their sorry asses. The middle class of "shepherd dogs" tow the line of the de facto power, no independent thinking to be expected. The internet is as obfuscating as the printed press and TV ever was. Give or take, seventy percent of it ignorance of writer-editors, thirty percent of incapacitation to see anything but career and individual interests in the short term.

Technology(hard and soft, as they go together) has been wrestled from the hands of independent players, the major example being Asssange, who had an impact on the exact granular outliers, where it matters, and has been put aside silently by the ones, the only ones that should be grateful and could have had an impact on using chaos of the masses, globally, to counter the dummer, short-term policies of the elites, and pressure for faster and cleaner global rule. The middle class as a whole sucks up to power, they have done so always historically.

In all, the world goes well, the Chinese are ahead, the Russians and most independant power nuclei(Iran, Brasil(fell of the wagon), Turkey, most of Asia), now align themselves regarding systemic thinking. Nationalism of course is dead most local elites know this, even in the US, and probably Putin, the overt advertising to the Russians just a decoy. Sunny Islam has no rational stategy, and in the short term, bets everything on breeding.

Consumerism(dead man walking), has truly dumbed down the masses globally, regarless of other factors. It has been the biggest success of capitalism Western style. Again the world goes well for having global rule act more decisively, where it matters, to step up local experiments into global strategy, in the long term.

The main problem to be addressed, since it affects all other burning issues, as ecological toxicity, and on, by reinforcing these positive tendencies. One single person less, has at least a fifty percent larger impact than any other measure of redress on survival of the human race per individual. The local experiments of global attitudes hopefully are a start to smarter elites behaviour. Our elites have failed for a long time now, anything progress has been a detour to decay and sludge, and timeliness is pressing.

jimmyriddle , April 25, 2018 at 8:46 am GMT
I think you mean 77th Brigade (a propaganda and psi ops unit).

The 77th Regiment were the East Middlesex -- and were disbanded in 1881.

BTW, the 77th Brigade takes its number from the Chindits -- Orde Wingate's Indian Army special operations unit, who carried out deep penetration raids against the Japanese in Burma.

Wingate was a rather fanatical Zionist and helped set-up the Haganah, the precedecessors of the IDF.

Randal , April 25, 2018 at 9:17 am GMT
My inclination has been to believe the Russian side from quite early on, mostly on the basis that the claimed US targeting spread simply doesn't seem credible. To aim 76 missiles and guided bombs at the Barzeh "complex" seems ludicrous overkill, for a small group of basically civilian buildings that once were part of the chemical weapons program but according to recent OPCW inspections are no longer in use as such. The spread suggested by the Russians, on the other hand, seems much more credible for a punitive strike, especially if you assume the US did not expect Syrian only defences to work effectively and thus did not plan for much redundancy.

As this becomes more widely accepted, it makes the US action in Syria much less of a defeat for Russia (because they had to stand by and watch their ally get pummelled) and much closer to something that is actually a win for Russia and an embarrassment for the US. It all helps to push the credibility of Russian air defences to still higher levels.

If the Russian government goes through with the suggested plan to deliver the promised S300 systems to Syria in response, then this will have been a major defeat for those behind this shameful incident and this shameful war -- primarily the Israelis and US Israeli lobby, along with the Saudis. Doing so would be the absolute best way to make those behind the attack grind their teeth in frustration, so hopefully Russia will go through with it this time rather than coming to some "compromise" with Israel.

At some point, Russia needs to end the impunity Israel has to strike at Syria at will, and to declare an exclusion zone over the whole of Syria for all un-invited foreign air forces (ideally this would include a deal with Lebanon to allow that country also to exclude Israeli air operations from its own airspace). The need to rebuild Syria is endlessly hampered by regular attacks and the threat of them. Once the recovery of territory on the ground is complete or nearly so, the best way to do this would seem to be to first make the Syrian air defences, backed up by Russian forces in extremis, strong enough for the task. Then to authorise the Syrians to retaliate to Israeli strikes on a tit for tat basis with missile attacks on Israeli territory. Then to announce a full exclusion of US and other intruding air forces, perhaps in conjunction with an offensive to recover territories in the east after Idlib has been settled.

Imo this is what the Russians need to do if they are to bring the Syrian matter to a successful conclusion, but it will mean some more tense confrontations with the various US sphere forces.


anonymous [340] Disclaimer , April 25, 2018 at 9:29 am GMT

Mr. Lang sounds like Mr. Buchanan in his latest piece published here: someone who considers himself dissident, but who thoughtlessly accepts that his Uncle Sam is the good guy.

The article, especially this paragraph

"The US has been committed to global war for seventeen years. This has been a special kind of war waged against Islamist guerrillas and terrorists worldwide. Such a war often demands equipment quite different from that used against states, especially a peer state. In that context relatively scarce funds have not been devoted to product improvement on things like TLAM (Tomahawk). Instead the funds available have been devoted to UAVs (drones) and the incredible costs of large ground forces in the absence of conscription. The Obama Administration liked to use the armed forces but did not think of them with anything like the high priority it gave to its social programs. The resulting sequester of defense funding played a role in the decline of US equipment efficacy against that of the Russians. There will be a change in that funding."

begs some questions:

1. Does Mr. Lang support the attack on the alleged "Syrian government chemical warfare connected sites"? He sounds like he does. But why?

2. Does Mr. Lang support US military conscription? He sounds like he does. But why?

3. Does Mr. Lang believe that more money should be spent on US military equipment like Tomahawk missiles for use against the government forces of Syria and Russia? He sounds like he does. But why?

I also wonder why Mr. Unz sees this new author as "interesting, important, and controversial," with a "perspectiv[e] largely excluded from the American mainstream media."

Ronald Thomas West , Website April 25, 2018 at 9:31 am GMT
"Are the Russians Correct?"

Well, they can make stupid mistakes:

https://ronaldthomaswest.com/2018/04/25/loud-clear-commits-suicide/

Ronald Thomas West , Website April 25, 2018 at 9:58 am GMT
@Ronald Thomas West

Oh yeah, 'on topic' there's this:

https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/201804251063880424-syrian-army-air-defense/

and this

https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/201804251063884207-opcw-chemical-weapons-syria-damascus/

Anonymous [201] Disclaimer , April 25, 2018 at 10:42 am GMT
@anonymous

Phil Giraldi exposed the White Helmets almost a year ago –

https://www.unz.com/pgiraldi/the-fraud-of-the-white-helmets/

Unz has provided a platform for Ron Paul's Liberty Report interview of Vanessa Beeley's reporting on Syria/White Helmets

http://www.unz.com/video/ronpaullibertyreport_the-ngos-pushing-a-new-syria-war-with-guest-vanessa-beeley/

and for Eva Bartlett's on-the-scenes coverage of White Helmets activities in Syria.

Is the Trump Administration/DoS trying to gaslight us?

US State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert yesterday: we "are very grateful for all the work the White Helmets continue to do.. on behalf of the US government and coalition forces.. I just exchanged emails with them the other day peoples bills are still being paid..'

Kafka , April 25, 2018 at 10:53 am GMT
@anonymous

Speaking of being the 'good guys':

http://thesaker.is/ask-yourselves-are-we-the-bad-guys/

makes a case of why we are in fact the bad guys.

anna , April 25, 2018 at 12:21 pm GMT
Maybe there is another possibility.
Merely speculating.
Mr. Trump claims he sent 100 plus missiles to impress whoever he needs to impress. They are satisfied. He looks tough.But he sends in only 20.
The Russians claim he sent in 100 and they nullified 2/3. They look good.
If 2/3 of 100 were nullified, should there not be more random craters with missile remnants or duds recovered by the Syrians?
Nate 43 , April 25, 2018 at 1:36 pm GMT
Why would you want our missiles to work against the Russians? This debacle has given us at least another six months of relative peace. The SAA can now continue clearing out jihadist in the East. FUKUS won't try again after making some adjustments to harden the electronics, but that will take some time. The only other option would be an overwhelming attack, winning through sheer numbers, but in that case the Russians will certainly counterattack, & I don't think CENTCOM wants to find out first hand how effective Russian offensive missiles systems are.

Note: If I were to guess, the Tomahawk attack was almost completely neutralized. It was the B-1, firing at relatively close range, that scored the hit on the "chemical weapons complex." This is why the Russians are sending the S-300 to Damascus.

anonymous [425] Disclaimer , April 25, 2018 at 2:39 pm GMT
Russia is going to ship the s-300 to Syria. Looks like Trump skunked the Jews again. When are the Jews going to smarten up and stop attacking Trump?

https://www.haaretz.com/middle-east-news/syria/russia-says-will-deliver-new-air-defense-systems-to-syria-soon-escalating-tensions-with-israel-1.6029530

Randal , April 25, 2018 at 3:04 pm GMT
@Yak-15

If Russia declared Syria an exclusion zone Israel would call that bluff within weeks.

Presumably it wouldn't be a bluff, and presumably the need for it not to be a bluff is why the Russians haven't done it yet.

In that theater of operations the Israelis would absolutely massacre the Russian presence and any reinforcements. Israel would easily take apart any integrated air defense system and accompanying ground units the Russians could employ by combined commando raid, ground incursion and air/missile strikes.

This appears to be pure fantasy.

Regardless, Israel isn't going to go to war with Russia merely to defend its freedom to attack Syria any time it wants. For all the wailing by Israel advocates, it just isn't that important to them. So long as they can get away with it, they'll do it. When they are forced to stop, they'll stop.

I believe if Israel sees its existence threatened it will act decisively.

Israel's existence is not meaningfully threatened by the loss of their ability to launch illegal attacks on Syria at will. The idea that it is, is a lie put about by the Israel lobby to rationalise and justify its actions.

manorchurch , April 25, 2018 at 3:08 pm GMT

Is the Trump Administration/DoS trying to gaslight us?

LOL. Why, yes, now that you mention it. Quelle surprise , eh?

The "attack" on Syria had two purposes: a saving of face, and a disposal of old ordnance.

I suspect that only Israel had any real interest in saving the face of their hired boogeyman. Trump being a flunky of Israeli, he did what he had to do.

Old ordnance or semi-0ld, revenue must be generated for the MI-complex. The bigger it grows, the more maintenance it requires. Disposal of old weaponry is just a form of cashflow. The wealthy and powerful insist on remaining wealthy and powerful. Your money is required to maintain that wealth and power. You will surrender your money to the powerful, or you will die. A simple equation.

Oniric , April 25, 2018 at 3:18 pm GMT
Russians are correct

F-UK-US always lie , they ( and their propaganda machine MSM ) would never let reality contradict their " dreams "

tac , April 25, 2018 at 3:38 pm GMT

New air defense systems will soon be delivered to Damascus

the Syrian Defense Ministry "analyzed in detail" the results of the missile attack of the United States and its allies.

"Based on it, a number of changes have already been introduced into the air defense system of the country, which will further increase its reliability ," Rudskoy said.

While the air defense systems were not named, it is widely believed to be the S-300 system.

https://www.almasdarnews.com/article/official-russian-announcement-of-new-air-defense-systems-to-be-delivered-to-syria-video/

Anonymous [240] Disclaimer , April 25, 2018 at 3:40 pm GMT
The latest Syria bombing: tactically irrelevant, it showed the foundation of the F.UK.US-Israel empire, air power, ineffective and was a major strategic defeat.

[Apr 24, 2018] The anti-Russia agenda continues along with the anti-truth-in-Syria agenda

Apr 24, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

Curtis | Apr 22, 2018 12:32:23 PM | 8

Anonymous 4

BBC took on Vannessa Beeley recently, too. Will NYT and WaPo be next? The anti-Russia agenda continues along with the anti-truth-in-Syria agenda.

AriusAmerican 5

During the Bush II fiasco, there were anti-war protests. The protests disappeared after Obama took office. And he was given a Nobel Peace Prize for talking about peace. But everyone went along with Obama's wars. No protests. And that's how they like it. They want support and tend to get it from the MSM and party lackeys. And if they don't get support, the one thing they don't want are massive protests, calls to congress, etc. As long as there's little to no resistance their war agenda continues.

somebody , Apr 22, 2018 2:23:31 PM | 16
PS
The HuffPoUK article tears into Beeley but at the bottom has a Russian submission to the Security Council of a report she did of the White Helmets. That report negates the article/story! HuffPoUK claims this is part two of a series and that part three will "look at evidence presented against the White Helmets." That should be interesting.

Posted by: Curtis | Apr 22, 2018 12:49:24 PM | 9

The White Helmets tried to recruit Roger Waters

The October 2016 dinner invite was delivered to Waters by a representative for the Corniche Group, an international holding company belonging to the family of the London-based Saudi billionaire Hani Farsi. Farsi was seeking Waters' presence at a fundraising dinner he had organized on behalf of The Syria Campaign.
bevin , Apr 22, 2018 2:04:47 PM | 14
Beeley and others are getting the same sort of treatment that Alan Winnington and Wilfred Burchett- both of whom had their passports revoked, by respectively the British and Australian government.
Winnington told the truth about the Korean war in the Communist Daily Worker while Burchett, beginning with his reports of Hiroshima, which told the truth about nuclear bombs, later repeated the offence in Korea and Vietnam.
Their names will be remembered long after the last bits of jewelry and expensive furnishings have been auctioned off from the homes of the whores who work for the bourgeoisie.

[Apr 22, 2018] Here is a video of someone who was in Aleppo documenting events at the fall of Allepo, and is also discussing the White Helmets issue on the Jimmy Dore Show

Apr 22, 2018 | turcopolier.typepad.com

Clonal Antibody , 8 hours ago

Here is a video of someone who was in Aleppo documenting events at the fall of Allepo, and is also discussing the White Helmets issue on the Jimmy Dore Show

Carla Ortiz Shocking Video From Syria Contradicts Corp. News Coverage

Play Hide

[Apr 22, 2018] Beware Of White Helmets Bearing News by Ann Wright

Notable quotes:
"... RT's Arabic service also tracked down an 11-year old boy filmed in the "attack," and found him in completely good health and able to answer questions of the RT reporter. He told her he was with his mother when they were urged to enter the clinic. "We were outside," the boy said, and they told all of us to go into the hospital. I was immediately taken upstairs, and they started pouring water on me." ..."
"... US still paying White Helmets despite $200mn-aid freeze for Syria recovery, State Dept. confirms | 20 April 2018 ..."
"... This shit just keeps getting deeper, and so many questions to ask, but the main question is why would Trump ever believe any intelligence agency was telling him the truth? The last time I looked, it was the intelligence agencies that lied, leaked, and this time set Trump up. ..."
Apr 22, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com

Authored by Ann Wright via ConsortiumNews.com,

The celebrated White Helmets of Oscar fame appeared to have made their own feature film in Duma on the night of the alleged chemical attack...

At the center of the controversy over an alleged chemical attack in the Damascus suburb of Duma on April 7 are the White Helmets, a self-described rescue operation about whom an Oscar-winning documentary was made.

Reporter and author Max Blumenthal has tracked the role of the White Helmets in the Syrian conflict. He reported that the White Helmets were created in Turkey by James Le Mesurier, a former British MI5 agent. The group has received at least $55 million from the British Foreign Office and $23 million from the U.S. Agency for International Development as well as millions from the Kingdom of Qatar, which has backed a variety of extremist groups in Syria including Al Qaeda.

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. "

The reference to social media as evidence in the most serious decision a leader can make -- to engage in an act of war -- is part of a disturbing trend. Then Secretary of State John Kerry pointed to "social media" as evidence of the Syrian government's guilt in a 2013 chemical attack in the same Damascus suburb. But as Robert Parry, the late founder and editor of this site, pointed out in numerous reports, Syrian government guilt was far from a sure thing.

Rather than wait for the arrival of a team of experts from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons to assess whether chemicals had even used in this latest incident, Trump gave the order to bomb.

Gas!

The possible role of the White Helmets in the latest alleged chemical attack was first revealed by veteran Middle East reporter Robert Fisk, writing for The Independent . In "The Search for Truth in the Rubble of Douma-And One Doctor's Doubts Over the Chemical Attacks," Fisk reported that he tracked down 58-year-old Syrian doctor Assim Rahaibani.

A White Helmet (Photo: whitehelmets.org)l

The doctor told Fisk that he learned from fellow physicians who were on duty at the clinic the night of the attack. Rahaibani said patients were brought in by "jihadi gunmen of Jaish el-Islam [the Army of Islam]" in Duma and that the patients appeared to be "overcome not by gas but by oxygen starvation in the rubbish-filled tunnels and basements in which they lived, on a night of wind and heavy shelling that stirred up a dust storm."

Rahaibani told Fisk, "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 Duma 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."

Rahaibani continued:

"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."

Fisk writes that, " There are the many people I talked to amid the ruins of the town who said they had 'never believed in' gas stories – which were usually put about, they claimed, by the armed Islamist groups. These particular jihadis survived under a blizzard of shellfire by living in other's people's homes and in vast, wide tunnels with underground roads carved through the living rock by prisoners with pick-axes on three levels beneath the town. I walked through three of them yesterday, vast corridors of living rock which still contained Russian – yes, Russian – rockets and burned-out cars."

Significantly, Fisk reported that locals told him that White Helmets left with jihadists bused out of Duma in a deal made with the Syrian government and Russia, which provided security for the transfer.

Other Reports

Other reporters have corroborated what Fisk found. Reporter Pearson Sharp of One America News, a conservative Christian TV network and supporter of President Trump, interviewed doctors and witnesses at the clinic. They also said there was no chemical attack and that strangers came into the clinic and shouted "Gas!" and filmed the reaction.

RT's Arabic service also tracked down an 11-year old boy filmed in the "attack," and found him in completely good health and able to answer questions of the RT reporter. He told her he was with his mother when they were urged to enter the clinic. "We were outside," the boy said, and they told all of us to go into the hospital. I was immediately taken upstairs, and they started pouring water on me."

* * *

Ann Wright served 29 years in the US Army/Army Reserves and retired as a Colonel. She was also a US diplomat and was in US Embassies in Nicaragua, Grenada, Somalia, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Sierra Leone, Micronesia, Afghanistan and Mongolia. She resigned from the US government in March 2003 in opposition to the lies the Bush administration was stating as the rationale for the invasion, occupation and destruction of Iraq. She is the co-author of "Dissent: Voices of Conscience." Tags Politics

Slippery Slope -> BaBaBouy Sun, 04/22/2018 - 18:51 Permalink

Terrorists with White Helmets.

house biscuit -> Slippery Slope Sun, 04/22/2018 - 18:53 Permalink

It just goes to show how little They respect your intelligence "I got it, I got it: we'll use white hats.....the dumb fucks will never know..."

Government nee -> house biscuit Sun, 04/22/2018 - 18:59 Permalink

White helmet = CIA freelancer. Shoot to kill (tyranny).

JohninMK -> Government nee Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:05 Permalink

OPCW have completed their first sampling. Now we wait.

BorraChoom -> JohninMK Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:48 Permalink

The director of the OPCW, Ahmet Uzumcu, a former career diplomat with the Turk foreign ministry – a former Turk ambassador to the Zionist Apartheid State (7-28-1999 to 6-30-2002). He was also, amazingly, Turkey's former representative to NATO. Being a Turk with qualifications like this would make anyone suspect that his credibility was fragile to nil.

blindfaith -> shovelhead Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:24 Permalink

Money wise you are correct. Almost 100 million dollars....what the hell are they eating filet, Russian Caviar, and drinking Cyrstal Champagne?

BorraChoom -> blindfaith Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:41 Permalink

US still paying White Helmets despite $200mn-aid freeze for Syria recovery, State Dept. confirms | 20 April 2018

Butifldrm -> BaBaBouy Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:14 Permalink

This shit just keeps getting deeper, and so many questions to ask, but the main question is why would Trump ever believe any intelligence agency was telling him the truth? The last time I looked, it was the intelligence agencies that lied, leaked, and this time set Trump up.

blindfaith -> Butifldrm Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:21 Permalink

Since his son in law enjoys parties out on the Hampton with George Soros, perhaps ol' George can fill him in and carry the "facts" back to Trump....first hand. CNN waits.

Quantify -> Butifldrm Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:55 Permalink

Trump is doing what he can. They are just kicking the nests to keep the bees and hornets stinging each other.

johnnycanuck -> Butifldrm Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:59 Permalink

Trump is a huckster, and is all in for anything related to scamming Americans and anyone else who would believe what he says or does. It has nothing to do with 'Intelligence'.

trgfunds -> BaBaBouy Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:29 Permalink

LOL apparently the only "victims" are small children who are perfectly dressed! "CALL MACY'S WE NEED MORE KID MODELS ASAP"

Vilfredo Pareto -> trgfunds Sun, 04/22/2018 - 20:39 Permalink

I noticed on the previous alleged gas attack the oppo seemed to look for the whitest kids possible. I guess they couldn't find enough this time, but dress them up nice for the cameras lol.

toady Sun, 04/22/2018 - 18:47 Permalink

Ha! That's what I was saying before the tomahawk strike... is there a way to target the white helmets first? Save us from their lies in the future.... I guess we'll be forced to leave that heavy lifting to Assad and Putin.

johnnycanuck -> toady Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:48 Permalink

"jihadi gunmen of Jaish el-Islam [the Army of Islam]" Galloway posed a question to the British Government and people that deserves an answer from the likes of their PM. 'Why are we supporting a group that calls itself the Army of Islam?'

chunga Sun, 04/22/2018 - 18:49 Permalink

This and the Skripal poison story have been met by a great deal of skepticism.

VWAndy -> chunga Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:20 Permalink

Well maybe because they stink on ice and everyone thats pulled their head out of their ass noticed. Even taken at face values both of these stories and many others defy basic logic.

chunga -> VWAndy Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:30 Permalink

The lack of any reasonable motives followed by fake supporting evidence is about as basic as it gets.

VWAndy -> chunga Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:35 Permalink

Demonstrably false by their own statements no less.

VWAndy Sun, 04/22/2018 - 18:52 Permalink

Team fiat is very well funded.

I am Groot Sun, 04/22/2018 - 18:53 Permalink

White helmets = Stormtroopers = Disney = Crisis actors. Nuff said. Expect David Hogg to be protesting guns in Syria any day now.

Government nee -> I am Groot Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:01 Permalink

Hogg stays in the rear, waiting for someone packing' the gear.

hongdo Sun, 04/22/2018 - 18:55 Permalink

18 intelligence agencies counting social media. Used to be called open source. It's free and seems to have more influence than the other expensive 17.

It must of been bitter for a combat "Mad Dog" to have to rely on social media pansies instead of his tough guy intel crew.

chunga -> hongdo Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:10 Permalink

That's especially embarrassing since, if this was a staged fake event, the official experts fell for it or more likely pretending they fell for it. I'm not sure but MSM might still be pretending to fall for it*.

A good journalist would be there finding out about the "White Helmets" for example, who is in charge and by what authority they have being there.

* long list of pretenders includes congress and the dotard.

shovelhead -> hongdo Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:19 Permalink

Lol. tough guy intel crew. Ok, we saw it on you tube...Bombs away. That's a wrap.

spoonful Sun, 04/22/2018 - 18:56 Permalink

The possible role of the White Helmets in the latest alleged chemical attack was first revealed by veteran Middle East reporter Robert Fisk, writing for The Independent . Actually, Vanessa Beely reported it almost a week before the honorable Mr. Fisk

http://tapnewswire.com/2018/04/ukc-vanessa-douma-false-flag/

JohninMK -> spoonful Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:07 Permalink

Yes but the Indy is owned by a Russian!

thisandthat -> JohninMK Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:26 Permalink

"They took our rags!"

VWAndy -> spoonful Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:13 Permalink

Its all good. Nice to see other people can see right thru the bs.

thisandthat -> VWAndy Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:28 Permalink

"They preemptively arrived at the scene."

Crash N. Burn Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:07 Permalink

Posted this in a thread yesterday:

Emails reveal White Helmets tried to lobby ex-Pink Floyd frontman Roger Waters

"Rogers did not respond to either email, according to journalist Max Blumenthal, who obtained the messages. Instead of giving the stage to the White Helmets during his Barcelona concert, Waters denounced the organization.

"The White Helmets is a fake organization that exists only to create propaganda for jihadists and terrorists.""

WTFUD -> Crash N. Burn Sun, 04/22/2018 - 19:22 Permalink

RW, despite his Jewish Heritage, has loooooong been outspoken against Israeli fuckery in Syria, Palestine, Lebanon etc etc

Not to the same scale/degree as Norm Finkelstein, but he's an intellectual and does it for a living; not that RW's isn't real smart.

Fact is, due to his music he can reach so many more ordinary people. Shows you how fucking dumb Clooney & his White Helmets are approaching Waters, oblivious to the fact he's been calling out Zionists/Others for decades.

We need more great people like him in the struggle.

[Apr 22, 2018] The Final Nail in the Russian Collusion Conspiracy Theory Coffin Comes at a Price by by Nathan McDonald

In no way MSM will drop "Russiagate" theme. They are way too invested in it. Douma attack changes nothing at all, contary to the author claims.
Notable quotes:
"... the Russian Conspiracy Theory -- rammed down the throats of everyone around the globe since Donald Trump was elected the 45th President of the United States -- has finally been laid to rest. ..."
"... Russia may or may not act, but it is rather unlikely that they will -- at least in the short term -- as the full combined might of the West is still an overwhelming force that no one nation can contend with. Russia knows this, and they are not stupid. But this is not to say that things cannot, nor will not, change in the future. ..."
"... Meanwhile, the chatter of Russian collusion, via the corrupt and dying MSM has petered out, as even those suffering from an extreme case of brainwashing find it hard to comprehend how a puppet can so easily slap its master across the face and get away with it. ..."
"... If President Trump was truly a puppet of Vladimir Putin -- or at least once was -- then parties in the know would have promptly released the evidence, destroying Trump in the process. The reason why it hasn't happened is simply because the evidence doesn't exist. ..."
"... Hilariously, it is the MSM who cry wolf about fake news and conspiracy theories, while at the same time, pushing their own half-truths, fake news and conspiracy theories. ..."
"... It is sad to see how far the "guardians of the truth" have fallen and how decadent the MSM has become. They are so greedy and corrupt that they have pushed us towards a path that places the West on the precipice of war with a global, nuclear power. ..."
"... The Demorats need impeachment to fire up their base and get their cash. They filed a lawsuit to generate propaganda points for the MSM to wallow in. ..."
"... The Main Stain Media are still pushing the Russia Narrative every chance they get, as a side show now, a little jab here a little jab there not really attached to anything. ..."
Apr 21, 2018 | www.zerohedge.com
Written by Nathan McDonald, Sprott Money News

Well, it came at a risk. It came at a gamble.

But the Russian Conspiracy Theory -- rammed down the throats of everyone around the globe since Donald Trump was elected the 45th President of the United States -- has finally been laid to rest.

With a resounding boom as the missiles landed in Syria, the hopes and dreams of the MSM proving that President Trump is simply a Russian puppet were shattered in one swift tactical strike.These strikes came at a great risk, as they hit key Syrian assets -- assets that President Putin and his Russian forces vowed to protect. Acting together with its joint allies , Britain and France, the United States struck out against Syria for what the Western Intelligence community claims were chemical attacks against the Syrian civilian population, orchestrated by its own government.

Whether or not these claims are true is debatable (and highly suspect) but regardless, the chips have fallen, and we are now in a precarious position as the West once again plunges itself, ham-fisted, back into the cold war era.

Russian leaders have vowed that there will be consequences for these acts against an ally they have sworn to protect. Yet to this date, no retaliation has seemed to occur.

Russia may or may not act, but it is rather unlikely that they will -- at least in the short term -- as the full combined might of the West is still an overwhelming force that no one nation can contend with. Russia knows this, and they are not stupid. But this is not to say that things cannot, nor will not, change in the future.

Still, this has come at a cost. Russia has once again been forced into further isolation, as its Western peers condemn their actions and threaten them with even more trade sanctions. Pushed to the point of desperation, who knows what actions they will take in the coming years?

Meanwhile, the chatter of Russian collusion, via the corrupt and dying MSM has petered out, as even those suffering from an extreme case of brainwashing find it hard to comprehend how a puppet can so easily slap its master across the face and get away with it.

If President Trump was truly a puppet of Vladimir Putin -- or at least once was -- then parties in the know would have promptly released the evidence, destroying Trump in the process. The reason why it hasn't happened is simply because the evidence doesn't exist.

Hilariously, it is the MSM who cry wolf about fake news and conspiracy theories, while at the same time, pushing their own half-truths, fake news and conspiracy theories.

It is sad to see how far the "guardians of the truth" have fallen and how decadent the MSM has become. They are so greedy and corrupt that they have pushed us towards a path that places the West on the precipice of war with a global, nuclear power.

The final nail in the Russian collusion coffin has been put in place, but at what cost?

Only time will tell.

Itinerant -> New_Meat • Sat, 04/21/2018 - 18:51 Permalink

A dumb article: The Russians have not vowed anything. As Lavrov has stated publicly, "there will be consequences" is a factual observation, not a vow to revenge anything. Revenge does not help. It is not the way Putin thinks -- Putin thinks in terms of interests and the trade off between risks/costs and benefits.

Arctic Frost -> Frilton Miedman • Sun, 04/22/2018 - 11:28 Permalink

"With 4 indictments, 2 guilty pleas, not sure how anyone thinks it's over. AS for the Syria attack. . . "

Four indictments that have NOTHING to do with Trump colluding with Russia and are SOLEY upon the people indicted. Two guilty pleas for "lying" which your side is advocating that lying is no longer an issue we should care about.

AS FOR SYRIA: Interesting you put the Syria strike on Putin when it was obviously led by Britain and France or are we now to believe they along with Trump are Putin puppets too? However, you do seem to be FINALLY admitting your "NGO"'s are nothing but state sponsored shams intent on manipulating the world wide masses to believe their propaganda. After all it was YOUR people who claimed there was a supposed chemical attack and demanded retaliation.

Keep spinning in circles, as the dog who chases his tail is in a world all of his own making.

Reaper • Sat, 04/21/2018 - 09:58 Permalink

BS. The neo-cons know the strike was deliberately ineffective. The Demorats need impeachment to fire up their base and get their cash. They filed a lawsuit to generate propaganda points for the MSM to wallow in.

JailBanksters • Sat, 04/21/2018 - 09:59 Permalink

The Main Stain Media are still pushing the Russia Narrative every chance they get, as a side show now, a little jab here a little jab there not really attached to anything.

We haven't seen anything like this since the Russians were accused of hacking the Federal Election, over to you Bob.

Well that's right Jim, and now for something completely different.

Written by Nathan McDonald, Sprott Money News

[Apr 22, 2018] The Crisis Is Only In Its Beginning Stages by Paul Craig Roberts

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... This popular question completely misses the point. The US attack on Syria is a clear and indisputable war crime against a sovereign country regardless of whether Syria used a chemical weapon in driving the Washington supported terrorists from Douma. ..."
"... It is unlikely that the UN Security Council will condemn Washington, which pays 25% of the UN's budget. Moreover, the Security Council is loaded up with Washington's vassals, and they will not vote to censure their liegelord. ..."
"... Putin is wasting his time taking the matter to the Security Council, unless his purpose is to prove that every Western institution is completely corrupt. ..."
"... During the entirety of the Cold War no US ambassador to the UN spoke aggressively and disrespectfully to the Soviet representative as Nikki Haley speaks to the Russian ambassador. During the Cold War no American president would have tolerated Nikki Haley. The crazed bitch would have instantly been fired. ..."
"... Until Washington is effectively resisted, Washington's European vassals, the UN Security Council and the OPCW will stand with Washington. ..."
Apr 17, 2018 | www.unz.com

Many, including Russia's President Putin, have asked why the US launched an illegal attack on Syria prior to the chemical weapons inspectors examining the site of the alleged chemical attack.

This popular question completely misses the point. The US attack on Syria is a clear and indisputable war crime against a sovereign country regardless of whether Syria used a chemical weapon in driving the Washington supported terrorists from Douma. No one acted to stop Washington's war crime. Some of Washington's vassals, such as Germany and Italy, refused to participate in Washington's war crime, but no one attempted to block it. The impotent UN Security Council, to which Russia is wasting its time appealing, the EU, NATO, Russia and China themselves did nothing to stop Washington's Nazi era war crime.

Russia said that if Washington's attack harmed its citizens, there would be military consequences, but Russia did not protect its ally Syria from the attack.

Perhaps it doesn't matter as Washington's attack was carefully conducted so as to have no effect except to serve as a face-saver for Trump. Apparently no one was killed and no damage was done to anything real except to a facility in which anti-venom for snake bites was being produced.

On the other hand, it does matter, because of the perception that the American presstitutes have created that it was a great victory for America over the evil Syrian government and the evil Russian government that supports them. This perception, which the presstitutes have created with their fake news, justifies the war crime and will lead to more attacks on Syria.

It is unlikely that the UN Security Council will condemn Washington, which pays 25% of the UN's budget. Moreover, the Security Council is loaded up with Washington's vassals, and they will not vote to censure their liegelord.

Putin is wasting his time taking the matter to the Security Council, unless his purpose is to prove that every Western institution is completely corrupt. As most informed people already know this, I don't understand the point of proving the known. Putin should read Eric Zuesse's article before he puts too much faith in the UN. https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2018/04/17/how-us-has-virtually-destroyed-un.html

As I have written on a number of occasions, I admire Putin's Christian character of sidestepping the beatings he continuously takes from Washington in order to save the world from the massive deaths of a world war. The problem is that by turning the other cheek, Putin encourages more aggression from Washington. Putin is dealing with neoconservative psychopaths. He is not dealing with common sense.

During the entirety of the Cold War no US ambassador to the UN spoke aggressively and disrespectfully to the Soviet representative as Nikki Haley speaks to the Russian ambassador. During the Cold War no American president would have tolerated Nikki Haley. The crazed bitch would have instantly been fired.

The Russian government is captured by delusion if the Russians believe that the US government, in which Nikki Haley is Trump's choice to be America's spokesperson to the world, in which the crazed neoconservative war monger John Bolton is a principal influence over US military and foreign policy, and in which the President himself is under threat of indictment for wanting to normalize relations with Russia, has any prospect of avoiding war.

The best chance of preventing the oncoming war is Russian-Chinese-Iranian unity and a defeat for American arms in a regional context not worth the Washington psychopaths launching of nuclear weapons. Until Washington is effectively resisted, Washington's European vassals, the UN Security Council and the OPCW will stand with Washington. Once Washington experiences a defeat, NATO will dissolve and with this dissolution Washington's ability to threaten other countries will lose its cover and evaporate.

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

Highly recommended!
Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

Highly recommended!
Notable quotes:
"... It is perfectly possible that the British government manufactured the whole Salisbury thing. We are capable of just as much despicable behavior and murder as the next. ..."
"... Tucker Carlson of Fox News has it nailed down.... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M28aYkLRlm0 ..."
"... This "civil war" has been nothing but a war for Syrian resources waged by western proxies. ..."
"... So now, In desperation borne out of their impending defeat, the imperialists have staged a chemical attack in a last throw of the dice to gain popular support for an escalation in military intervention. Like military interventions of the past, it is being justified in the name of humanitarian intervention. ..."
Apr 21, 2018 | discussion.theguardian.com

wheelbarrow1 , 13 Apr 2018 14:37

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

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

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

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

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

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

Source :- 'A Quiet Courage' Liane Jones.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Whose 'executive director' used to work for USAID?

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

Who are affiliated to the Iranian terrorist group MEK?

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

I say stay out it.

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

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

CodeNameTwiglet , 13 Apr 2018 14:15
The Syrian people are heroically resisting and defeating western imperialism. This "civil war" has been nothing but a war for Syrian resources waged by western proxies.

So now, In desperation borne out of their impending defeat, the imperialists have staged a chemical attack in a last throw of the dice to gain popular support for an escalation in military intervention. Like military interventions of the past, it is being justified in the name of humanitarian intervention.

But if we have a brief browse of history we can see that US & UK governments have brought only death, misery and destruction on the populations it was supposedly helping. Hands off Syria.

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

Apr 21, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

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

Further points about the White Helmets and East Ghouta.

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

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

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

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

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

Paul Crow , 13 Apr 2018 15:43

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

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

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

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