'Since 1941, American wars have been fought in the interest of empire, power & domination'
Syrian troops have retaken more than two-thirds of eastern Aleppo from rebel forces. Battles have been raging for control of the historic Old City. People who have been held hostage by militants for months are now pouring out from the southeast of Aleppo.
RT discussed Barack Obama's decision to waive restrictions related to providing military assistance to foreign forces in Syria with experts.
Richard Becker, a member of the anti-war ANSWER coalition, told RT: "It is really hard to say what the US elections would actually mean in practice. But if it does mean in practice the arming of irregular forces, rebels groups and foreign fighters in Syria, then that could only make the situation worse. There needs to be an end to this war. It is a terrible war, it’s had a terrible impact… Promoting sending more weaponry, whether it is called defensive weaponry or offensive weaponry to the forces that are seeking regime change in Syria, and particularly the leading forces that are seeking regime change, that is the Al-Nusra Front, the Al-Qaeda affiliate, although it changed its name, and ISIS, and other forces similarly which are continuing to wreak havoc into the country in the interest of regime change."
Asked about how this decision is essential to America's national security, Richard Becker told RT that “virtually every national security directive that comes out always includes that phrase about ‘protecting'.”
“So even the US at the time of Reagan in 1983, I remember reading the directive for the invasion of Grenada, the country that had a 100,000 people – and it was to protect the national security of the US. All of these wars that are fought - and particularly the ones that are fought on the basis of presidential action (in fact, all of them since December 7, 1941, 75 years ago), every war – Korea, South Vietnam, the wars in Central America, the invasion of the Dominican Republic, wars against Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and on and on, they all were fought in the name of ‘protecting the national security of the US’ and none of them have anything to do with that. They have to do with the interests of empire and power and domination”, he added.
Former CIA officer Larry Johnson suggests “this is a very dangerous move by Barack Obama in the very twilight of his administration if they are actually able to deliver those kinds of weapons.”
“What they are talking about is giving weapons, possibly surface-to-air missiles shoulder-fired into the hands of radical Islamists and people that had been cutting the heads off of the journalists in the past. I don’t know if this is just an attempt by Obama at this point recognizing that the rebel forces are dwindling and he wants to do this as a gesture so he can say as he leaves office that he gave them every opportunity to fight but they failed. This is a very desperate move on his part… and runs the risk of giving terrorists who want to attack the West the very means to do so”, Johnson continued.
Despite the optimism of Aleppo's residents, Western media outlets aren't so confident about the breakthrough in the devastated city.
Martin Summers, an independent journalist and commentator, says Western media outlets have been pushing a misleading narrative concerning events in Syria.
“I think it is very instructive that there is a completely different narrative being pushed by the mainstream Western media. And there has been a completely different divergence of views about this crisis from the very beginning. I think the Western media have been caught up in a physiological warfare operation. For example, if we look at the White Helmets who are lauded in the Western media – BBC, CNN – as ‘humanitarians,’ but they are embedded with the Al-Nusra Front who are a Syrian Al-Qaeda offshoot. And the White Helmets themselves are actually funded by the NATO powers to the tune of several million pounds… The Western media have presented the rebels in Aleppo as ‘freedom fighters’ of some sort, but the embarrassing fact is is that they are Al-Qaeda and they are aligned with NATO as has been the case for many years… I think the West has been trapped now in its own narrative smoke and mirrors universe where they have to double down on telling basically untruths about what is going on."
Col. Larry Wilkerson (Ret.) and Chief of Staff to Colin Powell said “we need to face that and we need to operate from that perspective: Assad is going nowhere. Aleppo is just a reflection of that.”
“There is an old theory in international relations that some wars have to be won. This is one that is being won by Assad and his allies. We need to recognize that and stop the killing, slaughter, and bloodshed. Stability, in this case, is better than what we have right now. It was the same in Libya. We opened Pandora’s Box and look what we have there now," Wilkerson told RT.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.