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31 May, 2019 10:46

White Helmets and ‘Russian’ nerve gas: New Call of Duty trailer is modern propaganda at its finest

White Helmets and ‘Russian’ nerve gas: New Call of Duty trailer is modern propaganda at its finest

The latest installment of the Call of Duty franchise ‘Modern Warfare’ hopes to add newfound realism to the game, highlighting the “morally gray” side of modern proxy wars, but so far it seems to be more ‘oorah’ Western propaganda.

According to early media previews, the new first-person shooter will take place in the fictional Middle Eastern country Urzikstan and will be inspired by the Kurdish YPG’s fight against so-called Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) in the Syrian civil war. So far, so good? Not quite.

Having previously sided with terrorists to indiscriminately execute civilians in a false flag attack at Moscow airport earlier in the franchise players can now take up arms alongside Western-backed, alleged Al-Qaeda affiliates the White Helmets.

“There’s this whole other side of war today that is real, that’s happening, and to ignore it or not cover it felt like it would be a terrible, terrible omission,” game writer Taylor Kurosaki told the LA Times. “It wouldn’t be doing justice to the unintended victims in these wars and the unsung heroes of these wars.”

In this case unsung heroes are dodgy “aid workers” with a chequered past, shadowy backers and extremist friends.

The designers reportedly name-checked both the ‘Last Men in Aleppo’ and the Academy Award-winning ‘White Helmets’ documentaries at a preview of the game at Infinity Ward’s Los Angeles headquarters recently.

The White Helmets feature twice in the game’s trailer: firstly, when they come under attack from presumably Russian aircraft while they are among civilians in a town square and secondly, when they are helping an injured civilian on a stretcher.


Meanwhile, according to media reports, players will assume the role of Farah Karim, a Middle Eastern woman with a traumatic past who has been fighting her whole life. However, her origin story pushes the boundaries of the grotesque and the obscene.

In one flashback mission we learn that Karim’s home town was destroyed by evil, apparently Russian, drone strikes. Rescuers attempt to free our protagonist from the rubble using power tools and eventually succeed before the merciless baddies (Russians) proceed to airstrike the same location a second time.

Also on rt.com ‘Staged fakery’: Eye rolling on Twitter as Sky News posts video of White Helmets ‘rescuing puppies'

The little girl and her father flee the carnage but a truckload of Russian soldiers then arrive on scene and begin indiscriminately firing at everyone in sight while using nerve gas. Seriously. Audible screams of women and children are heard over the din of gunfire and explosions as our protagonist flees with her father to find her brother.

For some reason, upon reuniting with their hitherto missing brother/son, the family decides that the little girl is impervious to whatever nerve agent is swirling around the area and the father hands his son a gas mask (#Patriarchy).


No sooner are the family ready to leave than the Russians begin checking the area door-to-door. The father and a Russian soldier engage in fierce hand-to-hand combat, with the little boy also trying to intervene, but alas, the Russian is too strong. The soldier executes father, knocks brother out, and chases the  little girl around the house, with her stabbing him repeatedly with a screwdriver.

Tired of maiming with a screwdriver, the little girl decides to take the dastardly Russian's AK47 and shoot him repeatedly.

The kids then happen upon a group of Russian soldiers gleefully executing civilians in the street. More scenes of war crimes permeate the heavy fog of nerve agent that lingers in the air, which makes complete sense. The children eventually make a convoluted getaway as the screen fades to black.

Also on rt.com BBC producer says hospital scenes after 2018 Douma ‘chemical attack’ were staged

Admittedly, this is the same franchise that brought us astronaut soldiers (long before Trump had even dreamt up Space Force) but this laughable caricature of the Syrian conflict combined with thinly-veiled Russophobia really pushes the boundaries of plausibility.

“This game is as much of an indictment of the industrial military complex of the superpowers of the world as it is a referendum on where you draw the line and what tips the scale from freedom fighter to terrorist,” Kurosaki concludes. “There are all these perspectives on this, and no one is completely innocent.” Except the White Helmets.

Modern Warfare is due for release on October 25 on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC.

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