‘ISIS – perfect reason for US to stay in region, justify terror against Syrians’

© Khalil Ashawi
The narrative that the US is fighting Islamic State is a cover story, said Sara Flounders, co-director of the International Action Center. Americans created an enemy that justifies their presence in the region and terror against the entire Syrian people.

Turkish officials said yesterday a deal was reached with the US to set up a ‘safe zone’ in northern Syria, free of Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) militants. The US State Department denied such plans had been made.

RT: Turkey says the sides have agreed, but Washington denies this. What should we believe here?

Sara Flounders: Certainly this has been discussed and been in planning stages for years. It is a very dangerous military escalation that has been used again and again in past US wars - whether it’s called a humanitarian corridor and no-fly zone, a safe zone, a free zone. Regardless of the name, it really is an excuse for US air cover for the forces that they want to pull into power… And once they are in the air, once the bombers are going, all bets are off as the way of attacking the government of Syria.

They are still – the US and Turkey - committed to regime change, committed to pulling down the government of Syria. So even the discussion is a dangerous escalation because it means they are sounding it out, and they are trying to put the groundwork in place with US use of bases now in Turkey and other escalation special units that are complete under US protection. It can be small at this point, it could quickly expand. There are a lot of very dangerous escalations that are being put into place right now.

READ MORE: ‘Complete disaster:’ US training of Syrian rebels falters as Kurds prove combat superiority – report

RT: The US State Department is being quite evasive on this matter. Why is that?

SF: Because it would be such a major escalation, and even the discussion of bombing Syria two years ago of course was opposed in the UN, even in the Security Council, and then even by NATO, and then US Congress refused to go along. So there is a strong sentiment still against US war in Syria. But this is really a crisis moment, because there are powerful forces aligned against the Iran agreement, very powerful military forces - and they may seek to throw a provocation to sabotage this agreement through war, through a military escalation. I hope not, but we should know that this is a juncture in which those who are committed to expanding the war may really attempt to move forward. 

RT: Politicians in Washington has been saying its main goal in the region is to fight Islamic State. Do you believe them? At the same time they oppose Bashar Assad. Do you think there is a chance that his side of forces could be drawn into this? 

SF: Absolutely, because all of this sort of cover story, that the US is fighting ISIL - no one is more responsible for the rise of ISIL, for the funding, and for the destabilization of the entire region. But also whether through Saudi Arabia and through Turkey, ISIL has flourished with a wink and a nod from the US. So they have an enemy that is a perfect reason to be in a region and claiming to fight this form of terrorism, and at the same time a justification for US terror against the entire Syrian people.

A US Air Force Boeing KC-135R Stratotanker aerial refueling aircraft lands at Incirlik air base in Adana, Turkey © Murad Sezer

RT: Turkey wants American support in clearing the area of Kurdish forces. Is Washington likely to agree to that?

SF: They certainly want to draw the US in. It may be the secret cost of the US using the bases in the Diyarbakir. There are two bases actually now in Turkey, there may be other secret costs, in deals there always are.

READ MORE:‘US meddling in Mid-East led to rise of radical extremism’

It should be noted that in the last Turkish bombing [campaign] which they claimed was against ISIL - and I think there was one IS target - about 185, I believe (in three different bombing waves), 185 targeted PKK, the Turkish group [of Kurds] that operates within Turkey and on the border. And also targeted, it certainly seems, were the Syrian Kurdish forces.

Turkey is first and foremost fearful of the oppressed minority [the Kurds], nationality that exists in Turkey. And that has long struggled for their own national rights. Turkey will use this opportunity and they will try to bring the US in. And the US has shown in past times in Iraq and now in Syria that they are more than willing to use the Kurdish people, and to bargain with them in terrible ways that have set back this struggle time and again.  So will they do it again? For sure.

‘Like all empires, US seeks to cause war & destruction’

Libertarian Lew Rockwell, founder and chairman of the Mises Institute and a former chief of staff to Ron Paul, told RT that the Syria “safe zone” would be designed to protect terrorists.

RT: Why do you think the Department of State denies having reached any agreement with Turkey on the creation of a so-called “safe zone”?

Lew Rockwell: Because it is a no-fly zone – just like they had over Iraq. It’s designed to protect these guys who are terrorists. They call them the moderates, moderate guerillas or whatever – if they were fighting against the US they would be identified as terrorists. And it is to enable them to try to overthrow the government in Syria, bring on exactly what these so-called moderate rebels have promised – that is the ethnic cleansing of remaining Christians in Syria, the killing of the Alawites, and other horrible things that they planned.

These are not good people. The US has been killing people all over the Middle East, and the idea that they should be protected from anybody hitting back at them it is an outrage, but it is another US intervention, it is going to lead to more bloodshed. The US has already got immense amount of blood on its hands in the Middle East. And this is just more trouble and it can lead to more war. But again like all empires the US wants trouble – they want to cause division, they want to cause war, they want to cause fighting, they want to break up countries like Iraq and Afghanistan and everybody else too – Syria, Iran and so forth. It is a terrible thing.

RT: The Turkish Air Force has carried out massive airstrikes in Syria recently. The targets hit mainly belonged to the Kurdish militias, not ISIL. Isn't Turkey trying to solve the Kurdish problem once and for all under the guise of fighting ISIL?

LR: It’s true that Turkey is very much against the formation of Kurdistan. They want the Kurds within Turkey to be sub-serving into the Turks, so they are attacking the Kurds. The Kurds have done bad things too – that is not just the Turks. Again this is something that the US has stimulated, and they don’t mind at all – that Turkey is attacking the Kurds – the US just wanted to be able for Turkey to ask permission if we can kill these people. It is a terrible thing.

There is so much blood, and for those who think that more blood if the way that the Iran deal goes down, that the US and Israel, and whoever else will kill many, many people in Iran. They would like to kill more people all over the Middle East; of course make sure that Russia has no allies in the Middle East, and that the US controls everything. Not good, the US seeks to be the world empire, and we see how they do it in the Middle East – just terrible destruction, civilizational destruction. One of my least favorite things was that the US was occupying Iraq, and of course they still do occupy Iraq. They built a military base and a military dump right on the remains of an ancient Babylon – what an atrocity.

They say that ISIS is destroying ancient relics... But the US did exactly the same exact thing. Why would they do something like that? It is the way to show all the Iraqis: “We’re in charge, we can do anything we want, we can crash you and you just have to say, ‘Yes, sir!’”

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.