Linking Charlottesville to Assad – latest witch hunt of the US war lobby

Neil Clark
Neil Clark is a journalist, writer, broadcaster and blogger. He has written for many newspapers and magazines in the UK and other countries including The Guardian, Morning Star, Daily and Sunday Express, Mail on Sunday, Daily Mail, Daily Telegraph, New Statesman, The Spectator, The Week, and The American Conservative. He is a regular pundit on RT and has also appeared on BBC TV and radio, Sky News, Press TV and the Voice of Russia. He is the co-founder of the Campaign For Public Ownership @PublicOwnership. His award winning blog can be found at www.neilclark66.blogspot.com. He tweets on politics and world affairs @NeilClark66
Linking Charlottesville to Assad – latest witch hunt of the US war lobby
It didn’t take long for the pro-war US Establishment to exploit the tragedy in Charlottesville (in which one left-wing protestor was killed), to further their campaign for regime change in Syria.

Soon after the identity of the man who was at the wheel of the car that ploughed into demonstrators in Virginia was revealed, reports began to circulate that James Alex Fields, Jnr had a picture of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on his Facebook page with the inscription ‘Undefeated’.

Got that? Fields was an Assad fan boy! That proves we’ve got to keep on trying to topple him! That was the conclusion we peasants were clearly meant to be drawing.

What we are witnessing is a third witch-hunt, which has strong parallels with the ’Reds under the Beds’ McCarthyite persecution of alleged ‘communists’ and ‘communist sympathizers’ in the 1950s, and the hysterical anti-Russian campaign of the last few years. The agenda now is to try and link far-right/neo-Nazi activists at home with ‘official enemies’ abroad in order to discredit the anti-imperialist movement and facilitate more regime-change wars.

In other words, the activities of all too obvious domestic far-right/neo-Nazis are being used to promote the cause of a different but more disguised form of fascism. The fascism that targets independent resource-rich countries in strategic parts of the world for destruction, and whose adherents don't dress up in silly Halloween-style costumes, but who wear suits and have full Establishment approval.

Even though the pro-war Washington Post admitted that the authenticity of Field’s pseudonymous Facebook account could not be confirmed, it still ran an article entitled, ‘Syria’s Assad has become an icon of the far right in America’.

Attention was drawn to the fact that a former Klu Klux Klan ‘Imperial Wizard’, David Duke, had published a series of tweets back in March expressing support for Assad and his fight against ISIS. There was also mention of a video posted on You Tube, which appeared to show three Charlottesville protesters praising the Syrian Air Force.

We’d already seen Russia blamed for events in Charlottesville, now it was Russia’s ally Syria’s turn. Not to be outdone, Newsweek followed up with an article entitled, ‘Why do James Alex Fields and US Neo-Nazis Love Syria’s Bashar-al-Assad?

Again, the implication of the piece is that if you oppose the War Party’s line on Syria, then you’re an Adolf Hitler groupie. Don’t want to see the secular Syrian government toppled (and it replaced by al-Qaeda/ISIS)? Then you’re just like the KKK and those extremists in Charlottesville! Repeat after me (by orders of the NeoCon Thought Police): If you don’t want Assad toppled you must be a Nazi… If you don’t want Assad toppled you must be a Nazi…

Never mind that Assad leads a party called the Arab Socialist Ba’ath Party - and that Syria's constitution (Chapter 1, Article 8), expressly prohibits the forming of political parties on ‘religious, sectarian, tribal, regional or professional basis, or according to discrimination because of sex, origin, race or color’.

Never mind too the strong and significant support Assad has had from leftist governments around the world, such as Hugo Chavez’s Venezuela.

“We recognize the Syrian government,” Chavez declared in August 2012. “Who do they want us to recognize? The terrorists killing people, destroying cities, bombing?”

When Assad was re-elected in 2015, he received a congratulatory cable from Jacob Zuma, President of South Africa and president of the ANC, which fought a decades long struggle against the racist policies of apartheid. In September 2015, Zuma spoke out against the push for regime change in Damascus.

But let’s not mention that shall we? Instead we’re meant to focus obsessively on a former Imperial Wizard’s endorsement of the Syrian government and an alleged posting on James Alex Field Jr’s Facebook page.

The neocon/muscular-liberal’ attempts to smear those who oppose their warmongering agenda by associating them with the far-right is utterly cynical. It’s also incredibly hypocritical, given the War Party’s support for racist and sectarian death squads around the world, including their backing for a coup in Ukraine in which torch-light carrying neo-Nazis provided the cutting edge. You really can’t get more racist than a group who call themselves ‘The Brigade for the Purging of Black Skins,’ but the western regime changers, now virtue-signaling their ‘anti-racism’, backed them and other groups who carried out racist pogroms in their ‘humanitarian’ regime change op in Libya.

The enthusiasm behind the latest American witch-hunt has of course reached the UK.

In Britain on Saturday, the Sun newspaper sunk to a new low by publishing a piece entitled‘KKK Love Korbyn’.

A former KKK leader (the aforementioned Duke) who took part in the Charlottesville race riot is a fan of Jeremy Corbyn and claimed the Labour leader helps his cause find sunshine in the world,” the paper declared.

So there you have it. We shouldn’t really support Corbyn, a lifelong anti-racist campaigner who once got arrested for protesting outside the South African embassy in London, because a head Klansman once praised him.

The attempt to use Charlottesville to smear political figures who don’t toe the line on foreign policy stands in stark contrast to what happened in the aftermath of another - and indeed much worse - example of far-right/neo-Nazi violence only a few years ago.

On July 22, 2011, Norwegian far-right terrorist Anders Brevik blew up eight people in Oslo and then gunned down 69 at a summer holiday camp organized by the left-wing Workers Youth League.

In his so-called ‘manifesto’ Breivik cited and praised neocon writers and political figures, including the former Prime Minister of Japan Taro Aso and the former Australian Prime Minister (and Iraq war hawk) John Howard. He lauded US-ally Japan as a model country for its ‘mono-culturalism’.

He also expressed strong support for what the Jerusalem Post described as ‘far-right Zionism’.

But Taro Aso and John Howard were not taken to task by The Sun and pro-war papers in the US for the fact that a murderous neo-Nazi extremist had praised them. There were no strongly worded attacks on Japan and its leaders for Breivik being a fan. Nor were there calls to shut down Wikipedia after the evil mass murderer said the site gave him his ‘world view’.

But there were, surprise, surprise, headlines about Breivik saying that Vladimir Putin was ‘deserving of respect,' even though he also said of the Russian President "I am not sure whether in the future he will be our best friend or our worst enemy..."

In the same way that anyone who wanted progressive change in the US - and a less hawkish foreign policy in the 1950s was branded a ‘commie’ or a ‘Kremlin agent' - so today anyone who wants an end to the genuinely fascistic policies of endless war-mongering is smeared as either an associate/soul-mate of fascists, a ‘Kremlin agent‘, or both.

A new, best-selling book in the US, by the five-time Emmy Award winner Sharyl Attkisson, describes ‘how shady political operatives and fake news control what you see, what you think and how you vote’.

‘The Smear’  details how these campaigns - including an 11-year one against me - work.

"Nothing happens by accident," Attkisson writes. "What you need to ask yourself isn’t so much 'is it true,' but who wants me to believe it and why?"

Her book is essential reading for these neo-McCarthyite times.

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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.