Eyes on Idlib: Syrian children robbed of innocence to act as mouthpieces for US coalition proxies
First there was Bana al-Abed, who, at only six-years-old, shot to fame depicting life under “Syrian and Russian bombs” in East Aleppo while ignoring the ravages of this enclave by the numerous US coalition-sponsored terrorist and extremist factions that included Al Nusra Front (Al Qaeda) and an assortment of client sectarian militants who collectively punished Syrian civilians in both East and West Aleppo for almost five years.
Bana rose to prominence in the final months of the Syrian Arab Army campaign to finally liberate the Aleppo’s eastern suburbs from extremist mafia gangs and criminal parasites armed by NATO member states and Gulf States and promoted by the Western media as “moderate rebels” while they crucified, executed, tortured, raped and generally abused the Syrian civilians who did not submit to their version of “democracy and freedom”.
The exploitation of Bana by her own parents has been extensively documented and her father’s ties to Nusra Front and even ISIS have been explored. Bana herself has been instrumentalized and converted into a tool for Western military adventurism in Syria. She has been firmly placed on the treadmill of useful “victim” stardom where she will continue to provide the propaganda gymnastics required of her by her controllers and handlers working within the Western soft power complex. These modern-day child-catchers and Svengalis will ensure Bana a future of book tours and UN appearances to maintain the theatre designed to facilitate “humanitarian” intervention under a “Responsibility to Protect” pretext, which translates into a “licence to kill,” according to former UK Ambassador to Syria, Peter Ford.
Previously we had Omran Daqneesh, the “face of the suffering of Aleppo”. Unfortunately for the pro-regime-change cartel, Omran’s fame was short-lived when his father was interviewed in 2017, expressing his steadfast support for the Syrian government and his horror that his son had been so universally exploited. Those interviews exposed the story as fake on a number of levels and the media promulgators of the story as shallow, hypocritical narrative builders for empire.
In Eastern Ghouta, at the apex of the battles for its liberation, we had Noor and Alaa, who sprang up in a similar fashion to Bana, to produce videos pleading for peace which could only be achieved by international intervention. “We ask the international community to put pressure to stop bombing civilians and provide immediate humanitarian assistance.”
Children under the age of ten arguing in perfect English for what would effectively be the escalation of the externally stoked conflict that has raged for seven years in Syria. Unlike Bana, Noor and Alaa were diverse in their messages, targeting Eastern Ghouta, Yarmouk, Idlib, Daraa, producing detailed and eerily professional video shorts presenting the case for defending the “moderates” and bringing in reinforcements to turn the tide of the SAA liberation campaigns.
When Noor and Alaa were eventually evacuated to Idlib with their family they issued a video supporting the Western clamour that the Syrian government was forcefully displacing civilians from Eastern Ghouta. However, my time in Eastern Ghouta during those evacuations demonstrated that only the hardcore extremist factions left on the green buses to Idlib. The majority of civilians, even those who had taken up arms at some point in the conflict, chose to accept amnesty and to remain in Eastern Ghouta to rebuild and to restore their lives back to the peace and stability they had known before 2011.
The exit package for Noor and Alaa was similar to Bana’s – from Idlib they headed to Turkey, the country that was most active in nurturing and incubating the extremist entities that have infested Syria with their ideological hatred and racism.
Perhaps, more notably, Noor and Alaa met with Raed Saleh, leader of the NATO-member-state-created and multi-million-dollar-financed “propaganda construct”, the White Helmets. The PR machine that operates behind the scenes of this faux “humanitarian” group of alleged Syrians from all walks of life is vast, it is powerful, and it is capable of producing all manner of spin offs from their central hub of propaganda production.
Why do all these child prodigy Twitter accounts speak perfect English? Why does their language mirror that of the NATO-aligned media, think tanks and pseudo NGOs? How are they able to produce, almost daily, high-quality videos in areas that are largely deprived of electricity and internet coverage? A scroll through Noor and Alaa’s Twitter page is a trip down the memory lane of regime change themes and slogans - beautifully packaged into Shirley Temple personas who deliver the message with polished appeal.
The flurry of activity and production of accounts of six-year old girls all promoting the “moderates” in Idlib reached a crescendo when Lana closed her account and morphed into Yara whose Tweets are “protected” but who displays the same photograph as Hala. Confused? You will be.
If we focus on the Hala account, this was used to launch the #EyesOnIdlib campaign which will replace the #AleppoIsBurning and #Pray4Ghouta hashtags as the SAA turn their attention to Idlib and its infestation of extremist groups, many of which have been evacuated there from previously liberated areas.
Of course, none of these children pray for or mention the civilians being maimed and mutilated on a daily basis, under fire from the armed factions that have been camped in the outskirts of towns, cities and villages and raining down mortars, missiles, rockets and explosive bullets upon innocent civilians who are living in areas under Syrian government protection.
The terrorist groups in Eastern Ghouta fired 14,800 missiles into residential areas of Damascus city, over the six-year period of their occupation. Thousands of civilians were killed by these attacks including children just like Noor, Alaa, Bana, Hala, Yara, Marwa and Lana. Those children had been too busy just trying to survive to produce videos begging people in the West to end their governments’ financing of terrorism in a failed regime change operation in Syria.
Of the Idlib child pool, Marwa is the most eloquent and is once again promoting the White Helmets, another common thread that runs through the child chatter from inside areas that are “serviced” by this dubious search and rescue team that has been roundly discredited by Scott Ritter - a former United Nations weapons inspector in Iraq.
“First and foremost, as a “light” USAR team, the White Helmets are not trained or equipped to conduct rescues of entrapped victims. […] The techniques used by the White Helmets are not only technically wrong, but dangerous to anyone who might actually be trapped. […] In my opinion, the videos are pure theater, either staged to impress an unwitting audience, or actually conducted with total disregard for the wellbeing of any real victims.” Ritter said in an op-ed piece titled ‘Trump’s Sarin Claims Based on a Lie’.
Marwa would like Turkey to save Idlib according to her Tweets. “Children in Syria want freedom The world is watching how Assad and Putin are committing crimes against children, women and civilians in Syria.” This very un-childlike rhetoric is reminiscent of the Bana deleted tweets in which she invented the #HolocaustAleppo hashtag and suggested that ‘Dear World’ should start WWIII to counter the Syrian & Russian advances towards Aleppo’s liberation.
Whoever is harnessing these children into the humanitarian war complex is cynically relying upon their appeal to promote causes that serve the US-led coalition agenda in Syria and the region. Children should not be exposed to war but even more importantly they should not be exposed to a sinister behavioural change apparatus that will rob them of their innocence and their childhood while converting them into mouthpieces for the military industrial complex and cover for Western governments’ crimes under international law. These children are unwitting pawns in a game being played by global powers where their parents have chosen the side of the mercenaries and extremists and have sacrificed their children to a lost cause. The children are not to blame but one wonders what they will become.
Where are the Yaras and Halas in Yemen? Where are the perfect-English tweets describing the horror of a school bus full of children being targeted by the Saudi coalition with US and UK-manufactured bombs? Yemen has no slick PR companies defending its “human rights”, there are no White Helmets in Yemen. Syria is the cradle of propaganda for the West and its allies in the Gulf States, Turkey and Israel. When we witness what can only be described as the abuse of children on such a horrifying scale, we know those PR agencies have reached the depths of moral bankruptcy which is only a reflection of the ruling elite who control the entire information battlefield and who have strewn it with the decaying remnants of failed propaganda stunts in their race towards failure in Syria. Idlib will be liberated and no amount of Halas, Marwas or Lanas will alter the course of history and victory for Syria and her steadfast allies.
Then and only then will Syrian children, who are not given voices in the West, be truly free and the role of the Bana imitators will come to an end.
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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.