Don’t drink the Kool-Aid! West promoting chemical false flags as pretext for military action
Robert Bridge is an American writer and journalist. He is the author of 'Midnight in the American Empire,' How Corporations and Their Political Servants are Destroying the American Dream. @Robert_Bridge
Once again the world is on tenterhooks as the possibility of a major clash erupting between major powers in Syria looms large on the horizon. If the situation seems surreal, it's because we've been at this dangerous crossroads before. One year ago almost to the day, the United States carried out an unprovoked missile strike against Syria’s Shayrat Airbase. The reason? Without any benefit of the doubt or presumption of innocence, Syrian President Bashar Assad was scapegoated for a chemical attack against civilians.
The chemical blame game continues today.
The most recent attack, which screams ‘false flag’ like no other, comes as no surprise to many observers. Russia was sounding the alarm last month that US instructors were actively training militants for a “chemical provocation” that would be used as a pretext for carrying out an attack on the Syrian government (Syrian doctors, meanwhile, said they had not received victims with signs of chemical poisoning from Douma, and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has said no evidence has been found of a chemical weapons attack).
So why does the Western media resolutely refuse to entertain the possibility that – just maybe – the ‘moderate’ rebel groups in Syria may have been responsible for the latest (alleged) outrage against civilians?
After all, even the most partial observer would have to agree that the rebels have infinitely more motive than the Assad government to orchestrate an attack against innocents. The reason is beyond clear: they would have the unconditional support of the US no matter what happens.
Last year, for example, following a deadly provocation in Idlib Province, the US State Department within hours already knew who the guilty parties were: “Russia and Iran…bear great moral responsibility for these deaths.” It then accused Assad on the basis of nothing of operating with “unabashed, brutal barbarism.”
It would not require a rocket scientist among the militants to understand that the Western powers will automatically blame any future chemical attack on the usual suspects. Now if that isn’t an invitation for mayhem, I don’t know what is.
‘Let others take care of Syria’
At the end of March, President Donald Trump announced US troops would be “coming out of Syria very soon. Let the other people take care of it now.” Although Bashar Assad may have taken some cold comfort from that statement - somehow I seriously doubt it though - for the rebel forces it would have been interpreted as their final curtain call. With history as their guide, the rebels understood the one thing that would keep America in the game: a deadly chemical attack against civilians. Does anyone really believe Assad wanted to give Trump an excuse to hang around longer?
Pres. Trump: "We'll be coming out of Syria very soon. Let the other people take care of it now...We're going to have 100% of the caliphate, as they call it —sometimes referred to as land. We're taking it all back." pic.twitter.com/N9cPYkS6pk— Evan McMurry (@evanmcmurry) March 29, 2018
This brings to mind a popular meme now making the rounds on social media. It shows President Vladimir Putin speaking on the phone to Assad: “The Syrian Army is winning the battle against the terrorists,” the Russian leader notes. “You’ve surrounded the last town, have overwhelming military force and are negotiating a surrender. What next?”
Below is a picture of Assad, who answers, very implausibly: “Launch a chemical attack of no tactical significance to provoke international outrage and military interventions against me.”
That, in a nutshell, is what the Western narrative would have us believe: Bashar Assad, a Western-educated medical doctor with no shortage of brains, willfully exposed himself to the gravest risk at the precise moment he was beginning to see the end of the tunnel on an eight-year military campaign. Indeed, at the time of the weekend’s alleged chlorine attack, he was just mopping up an eight-week offensive around Douma, outside Damascus, the last stronghold controlled by the Jaysh al-Islam group. It was pretty much smooth sailing from there to the finish line.
The argument that Assad essentially committed the equivalent of political suicide by ordering a chemical attack at this crucial juncture, or any juncture, becomes even more implausible when we recall that Syria possesses a respectable military force, especially after getting a big boost from imported Russian-made defense systems. Israel discovered that the hard way in February when the Syrian army shot down one of its fighter jets.
These factors would have precluded Assad from resorting to any primitive, desperate measures, least of all a chemical attack. On the other hand, it is precisely the type of crude behavior one would expect from poorly-armed, terrorist-backed militants, who are getting beaten back on every single military front.
Chaos, stage left
The boiling plot really thickens, however, when we consider the story of the White Helmets, the Western-funded, Hollywood-lavished rescue group, which has demonstrated an uncanny knack for being on the scene of every ‘chemical outrage’ in the country. Who are these media-hyped heroes, fighting unselfishly on behalf of war victims? Well, not exactly who you would think.
The White Helmets essentially function “as a support group alongside Al-Nusra and al-Din al-Zenki and other known terrorist groups operating in Syria,” Patrick Henningsen, a geopolitical analyst at 21stcenturywire.com, told RT.
As far as its impartiality goes, Henningsen revealed the group is “basically an NGO front funded by USAID, the British Foreign Office, various EU member states, Qatar, and other various and sundry nations…”
Western media heralds the White Helmets as being an unbiased and independent grassroots movement. But on that score, let’s just say the Oscars award ceremony never mentioned the shadier side of their story.
“They claim that they receive no funding from any government that has a vested interest in the Syria conflict,” Vanessa Beeley, independent researcher and journalist, told RT. “And yet, they are in fact multi-million funded, conservatively speaking, a hundred million dollars, from the US – $23 million via USAID; UK around $65 million; France is supplying equipment…”
Meanwhile, amid the meltdown, there is no modicum of moderation or composure from Western leaders and media outlets whenever these easily predictable events occur. Mainstream journalists rant and rave, practically taking the side of bona-fide terrorists, while the US leader inveighs against a nuclear-powered nation before any investigation could have commenced.
This is madness. Yet we’ve been here before.
Time and again – in places as diverse and distant as Salisbury, England, and Baghdad, Iraq – the West is attempting to capitalize on the panic and threat of chemical weapons to slander its perceived adversaries while advancing a noxious agenda, which more often than not involves military intervention and even outright imperialism.
The only way to put the brakes on these shining examples of democracy by mob rule is by giving the people the information they need to hold their various governments accountable in the face of serious events - possibly even false flags - that demand the utmost transparency.
As of Monday evening, Moscow time, US Defense Secretary James Mattis said the United States has not ruled out the possibility of launching airstrikes against Syria in response to the alleged chemical attack.
May cool heads - and wise ones - prevail.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.