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What Has Been Happening In Syria?
international | anti-war / imperialism | feature Tuesday March 13, 2012 23:40 by Taking the blue pill
Dirty tricks again
For the past six months and longer once Libya had fallen to the NATO sponsored 'rebels', we have faced a continuous media onslaught about Syria with reports of protests, shootings, killings, attacks, bombing and so forth. The backdrop to the narrative is that this is part of the Arab Spring which started last year and it is a good thing overall. So many people are probably wondering what really has been happening, given that this is the same media that was cheer leading the Iraq war almost 10 years ago even though at least a million+ are now dead as a result. And yet somehow they want to imply that they are doing the right thing now. We should also recall that this is the same media that is promoting austerity and encouraging us to accept the blame for the mad years of the bubble and as a consequence we should pay up the €90 billion bailout and in the process see all the state services stripped to the bone. They are presenting the uncomplicated truth surely
Background to all the different playersSo what has been happening? Its probably impossible to know exactly since so many things happen in so many places and there are different people with different perspectives and agendas telling the story. What is clear though is that we have a 'Western' view which largely consists of NATO, US govt, UK govt, France the ex-colnial power, various stooges of the West such as Gulf monarchies. We then have the regime in Syria, the opposition whoever they are. The people of Syria who may or may not be the opposition presented to us and then other powers like Russia and China.
In all the Arab countries, the people have for years been ruled by autocratic government and still are. In the 1950s most of these countries had vibrant Left wing movements and socialism was a receptive idea. In the interim fundamental religion has been nurtured and encouraged in order to redirect political energy into religious energy where it posed no threat to the status quo. Since many of these countries were oil exporters this state of affairs has calmed the waters while this oil was exploited and sold abroad. The people in practically every Arab country have suffered and remain quite poor and have many justifible grievances and it is into this mix that careful agitators have been able to stir up a storm and ride the wave of anger.
So lets go back and examine what has happened in Syria. The offical line if you've been watching the media is that it all started with protests just like the other countries, then there were shootings and attacks by government forces and this has become more brutal and the people have been bravely resisting and we are now at the point where "something" needs to be done but the evil Russians and Chinese have blocked that and Assad is crushing the opposition. If only NATO could just help. They are a force for good; bringing peace to Afghanistan and building schools and doing the same in Libya by bombing civilians to save civilians. Right? -No!
It is best when examining things to looks for the conflicts in consistency and the alternative viewpoints and see how they contradict each other and to follow the logic in terms of the natural agendas each of the different parties will have all the way up to the strategic level. First we should bear in mind that Syria is an ally of Iran and that Israel and the US have been threating to attack Iran on and off for the past 7 or 8 years. Israel with at least 200 nuclear weapons of its own says Iran is trying to build a nuclear bomb, yet despite the evidence and when you read past the gutter press headlines and get to the details of actual reports, there is little evidence. In an ideal military world, to attack Iran it would be very nice to have Syria on your side and even to use its airbases. We should remember that since Iran is evil then attacking it with massive bunker busting bombs and a campaign to bombs hundreds of military sites and presumably killing many people would be a good thing. On the other hand a Iranian terrorist killing one white Western person is extremely evil.
Another point to remember is that in Libya, China had a huge workforce of 30,000 building railways and oil infrastructure, since expelled and was also getting oil from Libya. This was a slap in the face for them. Russia was never happy about the no-fly zone but did not veto it because they were told it wouldn't be used for regime change. It was. Syria has Russia's only port on the Mediterrean and is much closer to Russia. If Syria falls, then Iran is surrounded and would likely soon fall via attacks by Israel & US and Russia's southern buffer would be gone, kind of like if Mexico fell to a pro-Russia power in the case of the US. Crucially if the Iranian regime fell then the bulk of the worlds oil reserves would be back in the hands of friendly puppet governments. And now that we are past the point of Peak Oil, control and access to the remaining bulk of the world reserves is the single most important strategic asset to hold. For China which has huge oil & gas deals and contracts with Iran, these would be null and void and given China's huge appetite for oil, it would now have to bargain on the terms of a Anglo-US-Zionist agenda. And why? Because if Iran fell, then the new government would be 'pro-democracy' which means pro Western -dominated by US, UK, France and Israel. If the government was not favourable to them, then obviously it wouldn't have fallen, it would be just a change of one evil power for another. These are just some of the geopolitical factors that backdrop the whole thing.
The previous few months - real reports from Syria as opposed to fake newsNow it is time to take a closer look at the reports from the ground. Back in Nov 2011, historian and investigative journalist Webster Tarpley went on a fact finding week long visit to Syria with a group of other journalists, visiting Hims (pronounced Homs), Banias, Damascus and numerous other places. On his interview on Russia Today  and again on Guns & Butter , he says they were invited by a Catholic group in Syria -a place where Christians have freedom to practice, because this group fears regime change that would bring in a fundamentalist Islamic regime that would usher in killings and intolerance.
He says he talked to average everyday Syrians of all ethnic groups, Christian, Alawite, Sunni, Shite, Druze and across the board say they are been shot at by snipers and that in Hims in particular (where all the inital Western media reports were focused on) the people complain that there are terrorists snipers that shoot at civilians -men, women and children, random killings, simply for the purpose of destablizing the country. He said I would not call it a civil war (as of Nov 2011) and what you are dealing with are death squads, terror commandos, the kind of thing that people remember from Argentina and Central America. This is a typical CIA method. [The CIA field operations handbook describes how to launch a terrorist campaign of killings, kidnappings and torture combined with propaganda to destablize a country. People should recall that the CIA launched the 'Phoenix' operation of assassinations during the Vietnam War where approximately 200,000 people were killed in these special operations. Indeed this same type of assassinations are ongoing in Afghanistan in the so called 'Night Time Raids'. Iraq also has US dead squads too and these will increase as they withdraw the troops further. These people are good at killing and are good at training people to do it.] Anyhow in the case it is a joint operation of CIA, MI6, Mossad and DGSE (France) and it was the locals who called in the army for their own protection. However instead these killings get reported as being carried out by the regime. He goes on further to say that prior to Nov 15th any reports from Hims you heard could not in fact originated from Hims because a group of 400 to 500 locals whom they met, said they (Tarpley et al) were the first journalists they had seen and were delighted to see them so that they could tell them what is happening. In fact their other main grievance is that they were looking for fuel oil for cooking, the shortage of which was caused by economic sanctions. His visit continued to the Sara hospital which we should remember was the "hotest" town in the hotest neighbourhood of the "civil war" and they find women doctors and women nurses -not exactly fundamentalist but actually quite liberal. And the death toll was 5 to 6 per day but has peaked up to 80 killed per day. And they (doctors/staff) say it was done by snipers on the roofs, dressed in black wearing hoods shooting at the people. They say they are foreign fighters. They shoot at 9' O clock in the morning when schools open and 3pm when schools ends and at 11pm when the cafes close. And they said they want the Syria army to come in and protect us and setup position and stop the snipers killing them. So who are these snipers.
So the accounts you hear from Al-Jazerra (based in Qatar), you have to ask yourself who is doing the killing? So they go on a visit to the home of a 20 year old taximan who was kidnapped and murdered. In the case of Latin America the killings were targetted to just communists or trade unionist but in Syria it is anyone. Basically most of the killers are mercenaries from places like Chechen, Libya, Iraq and other areas and armed, trained, guided, supported by CIA/MI6/Mossad. At the start of this campaign most of these killings were all taking place on the peripheral cities bording Turkey, Iraq, Jordan and so forth and only more recently have these penetrated further into the interior even though if you think about it in most 'real' revolutions the trouble starts in the capital and spreads out. This is the opposite.
Tarpley goes on to refer to a 'massacre' back in mid Apr 2011 in the city of Banias on the Mediterrean where he prefaces and says there were political demonstrations calling for reform back then and that is exactly the point when the death squads arrived and starting shooting into the crowds and thereby causing confusion and destablization. [Essentially this is how the Western powers ride the wave of legimate anger and protest, by instigating murder and mayhem, sowing confusion, generating the 'humanitarian situation' for the West to come in and bomb their way to peace in the form of puppet Neo-Liberal regimes that plunder the country and impoverish the people. Very effective.]. And it was then that these terrorists massacred about 10 non-combat troops outside of Banias where they came under fire from 200 or 300 shooters. The account came from a sergeant in the Syria army who happened to have both of his legs shot off. Tarpley then recounts a visit (Nov 17th) to Damascus military army to soldiers of civilian army (mostly 19 to 20 year olds) and the general case was 'we were on guard duty and then under attack, often from someone very close'. In some cases they were on patrol looking for these 'rebels' and were ambushed. In all cases these people were dressed in black and hooded. He identifies the main groups formenting this destablization is the Moslem Brotherhood (who we should recall did NOT initially join the protests in Egypt and continue to be the reactionary vanguard trying to stop Egyptians pressing further with deeper reforms. The MB are essentially right wing reactionaries and the core element has always been under the control of Western intelligence agencies but they would be plenty of overlap in influence from the Gulf monarchies that feel threatened by calls for greater freedom and change.) -who are paid by Saudi Arabia that bastion of freedom. They represent the most reactionary governments in the world essentially absolute monarchies like Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UAE, Kuwait, Oman, relics of fuedal barbarism, places where women have no rights, in fact no-one has any rights. The entire US policy is destory the progressive regimes and exalt the power of these reactionary fuedal monarchies. Anyone recall the USA sponsoring the opposition in Baharin where their 5th fleet is stationed? No, in fact we should recall the highly televised arrival of over 1,000 Saudi troops to help Bahrain put down the opposition.
Tarpley then went on to Damascus to investigate a report of a widely publisized in the Western media attack on Baath party headquarters in Damascus and portrayed by BBC as the start of the civil war, but Tarpley arrives and find minor damage, and nothing resembling what a rocket propelled grenade could do. However on the same day the attend a demonstration of approximately 50,000 people a short distance away who are there greeting the arrival of a Russian delegation because previously Russia had announced they were sending the Russian fleet and people were over-joyed, (some holding signs 'Thank You Russia') because they knew that this move had saved them from the plight of what happened in Libya where over 30,000 people have died AFTER NATO got involved and unleashed carnage and marauding fanatics armed by NATO and US went on a killing spree after Tripoli fell.
The MediaA note about the media is that the main outlets promoting the Western Syria narrative are Al Jazzera (Qatar), France24 (Syria was their colony), the BBC and of course all the US media. What they do is show media clips but often add the provisio that they can't be confirmed. The whole idea is that the death squads allow the likes of Al-Jazzera and the BBC to say the Syrian army killed 10 more people today. One example is a claim of 200,000 protesting in Hims, yet Tarpley is able to show these are recycled clips from elsewhere. Originally the media coverage was based on 'The Gay Girl in Damascus' blog and this was allegedly a women living in Damascus reporting on the repression. This turned out to be a fraud  written by an American acedamic writing out of Scotland and partially written by his American wife who is a employee America Friends Service Committee which is known as a CIA front going back to the Cold War. More recently we had now the Syrian Observatory of Human Rights operating out of London, presumably they get their scripts from Langley, Virgina. But note the trend here in the propaganda where we had the West weeping over womens rights as the excuse before starting their bombing campaign in Afghanistan back in 2001. And now in they are all concerned about Gays and Lesbians in Syria, even though the entire coverage of it was fabricated and outed to boot.
And while on the topic of the media, moving forward to Mon March 12th 2012, it was reported that a massacre took place of 49 women and children. The opposition are automatically blaming this on the government, when in fact the only people such killings serve is those wanting regime change in the opposition. It is well known that there are key tippings points in public opinion to push for certain things. In the first Gulf War, the bogus story about Iraqis trying babies out of incubators was one such tipping point. The story turned out to be bogus and the original account was in fact recorded by the Kuwaiti amabassador's daugther with the help of a New York PR firm to help sway public opinion to the war -which it did. The killings reported today are clearly carried out by the terrorists squads injected into the country by the Western intelligence agencies and are designed to be such a tipping point.
Target of the Western new Neo Liberal regime -if they get their wayPeople should also be aware of the social safety net in Syria as opposed to the neo-liberal privatisation agenda promoted by the Anglo-French-US agenda, where there is a subsidized price of basic food stuffs. A kilo of very good bread is about 20 cents. No one goes to bed hungary in Syria. Medical care is free for all. The standard seem quite reasonable. Education is free at all levels. School uniform, school bus, school meal is free. Subsidies on the energy price, the basic telephone in country is free. Liability for basic insurance is free for say cars. To go higher does require more income but at least the basics are provided free for all. All this when in this country free travel for old-age pensioners is being TAKEN AWAY. [Recently the Irish Independent described this free travel as shameful!]
Make no mistake, if NATO get their way and bring peace with their bombs the new regime will be a neo-liberal one and all of the above will go. The worst thing for the present global capitalist system is to having living examples of alternative arrangements such as the above and it must go. This is exactly what happened in Libya where they had their own currency, had NO major debt, diverted a significant portion of the oil wealth the the benefit of the people. This is all gone and now the IMF are carving up Libya and privatising everything in sight.
ConclusionThe Western media covering what is happening in Syria is completely bogus. It has inverted almost everything and it is Western powers along with financial backing from the most backward and barbaric regimes in the Middle East and the Gulf that are instigating the destablization and carrying out most of the killings using death squads.
The Russia and Chinese veto has saved the day but not because they are necessarily nice but simply because it happened to align with their own strategic interests. And having presented the above, it does not follow that the Syrian regime are innocent. They are most likely not, but the guiding principle is that it makes absolutely no sense that countries like Saudi Arabia would be helping to bring freedom to any country let alone Syria.
For people who find this hard to swallow, they would do well to listen to the podcast below and read through some of the alternative news sources given above. The difficulity is that it can be hard to accept that you have been fooled by the mainstream media for so long and so thoroughly.
 Interview on Russia Today with Tarpley -http://tarpley.net/2011/11/21/report-from-syria-2/
 Guns and Butter interview on Syrian visit. http://www.kpfa.org/archive/id/76242
 http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/jun/13/gay-girl-da...-blog - Blog purporting to have been written by Syrian lesbian was in fact the work of a middle-aged American man