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SYRIA SYRIA SYRIA 08/09/2013

4 Questions for Supporters of a Strike Against Syria

Washington’s Blog
September 8, 2013

Ask anyone still thinking of supporting an attack on Syria to explain why the U.S. started supporting the Syrian opposition years before any uprising had occurred there.

And ask them to explain why 4-Star General Wesley Clark was told – right after 9/11 – that Pentagon officials planned to attack 7 countries in 5 years … including Iraq, Libya and Syria:

I had been through the Pentagon right after 9/11. About ten days after 9/11, I went through the Pentagon and I saw Secretary Rumsfeld and Deputy Secretary Wolfowitz. I went downstairs just to say hello to some of the people on the Joint Staff who used to work for me, and one of the generals called me in. He said, “Sir, you’ve got to come in and talk to me a second.” I said, “Well, you’re too busy.” He said, “No, no.” He says, “We’ve made the decision we’re going to war with Iraq.” This was on or about the 20th of September.

***

So I came back to see him a few weeks later, and by that time we were bombing in Afghanistan. I said, “Are we still going to war with Iraq?” And he said, “Oh, it’s worse than that.” He reached over on his desk. He picked up a piece of paper. And he said, “I just got this down from upstairs” — meaning the Secretary of Defense’s office — “today.” And he said, “This is a memo that describes how we’re going to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran.”

And ask them why this planning of regime change in Syria and 6 other countries started by 1991 at the latest:

It came back to me … a 1991 meeting I had with Paul Wolfowitz.

***

In 1991, he was the Undersecretary of Defense for Policy – the number 3 position at the Pentagon. And I had gone to see him when I was a 1-Star General commanding the National Training Center.

***

And I said, “Mr. Secretary, you must be pretty happy with the performance of the troops in Desert Storm.”

And he said: “Yeah, but not really, because the truth is we should have gotten rid of Saddam Hussein, and we didn’t … But one thing we did learn [from the Persian Gulf War] is that we can use our military in the region – in the Middle East – and the Soviets won’t stop us. And we’ve got about 5 or 10 years to clean up those old Soviet client regimes – Syria, Iran, Iraq – before the next great superpower comes on to challenge us.”

(Skip to 3:07 in the following video)

And ask them why the US and British governments considered using a false flag attack 50 years ago to topple the Syrian regime.

There are many other good questions as well, such as:

– Why would we attack when bombing Syria will only strengthen the hardliners … and harmAmerica’s national security?

– Why attack when the top U.S. military commander says that an attack would be both risky and expensive, and he can’t even say why we’d go to war with Syria?

– Why attack when everyone from troops and military officers to Pentagon war planners all oppose an attack on Syria ?

– Why attack when Congress members who have seen the classified intelligence aren’t even convincedthat the Syrian government used chemical weapons?

– Why attack when the U.S. and Britain have used chemical weapons in the last 10 years … and the U.S. supported the largest chemical weapons attack in history?

– Why attack when the attack itself would be a larger war crime even than chemical weapons use (here, here and here)?

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Alex Jones on Fox News: Rebels More Likely to be Behind Chemical Weapons Attack

Infowars.com
September 8, 2013

Alex appears on Geraldo at Large to discuss Syria.

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The West Dethroned

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Paul Craig Roberts
Infowars.com
September 8, 2013

“The European race’s last three hundred years of evolutionary progress have all come down to nothing but four words: selfishness, slaughter, shamelessness and corruption.”
Yan Fu

It only took the rest of the world 300 years to catch on to the evil that masquerades as “western civilization,” or perhaps it only took the rise of new powers with the confidence to state the obvious. Anyone doubtful of America’s responsibility for the evil needs to read The Untold History of the United States by Oliver Stone and Peter Kuznick.

The “New American Century” proclaimed by the neoconservatives came to an abrupt end on September 6 at the G20 meeting in Russia. The leaders of most of the world’s peoples told Obama that they do not believe him and that it is a violation of international law if the US government attacks Syria without UN authorization.

Putin told the assembled world leaders that the chemical weapons attack was “a provocation on behalf of the armed insurgents in hope of the help from the outside, from the countries which supported them from day one.” In other words, Israel, Saudi Arabia, and Washington–the axis of evil.

China, India, South Africa, Brazil, Indonesia, and Argentina joined Putin in affirming that a leader who commits military aggression without the approval of the UN Security Council puts himself “outside of law.”

In other words, if you defy the world, Obama, you are a war criminal.

The entire world is waiting to see if the Israel Lobby can push Obama into the role of war criminal. Many are betting that Israel will prevail over the weak American president, a cipher devoid of all principle. A couple of decades ago before the advent of the American sheeple, one of the last tough Americans, Admiral Tom Moorer, Chief of Naval Operations and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, publicly declared that “no US president can stand up to Israel.” America’s highest ranking military officer could not get an honest investigation of the Israeli attack on the USS Liberty.

We are yet to see an American president who can stand up to Israel. Or, for that matter, a Congress that can. Or a media.

The Obama regime tried to counter its smashing defeat at the G20 Summit by forcing its puppet states to sign a joint statement condemning Syria. However the puppet states qualified their position by stating that they opposed military action and awaited the UN report.

Most of Obama’s bought-and-paid-for “supporters” are impotent, powerless. For example Obama counts the UK as a supporting country because of the personal support of the discredited UK prime minister, David Cameron, despite the fact that Cameron was repudiated by the British Parliament in a vote that prohibits British participation in another of Washington’s war crimes. So, although Cameron cannot bring the British people and the British government with him, Obama counts the UK as a supporter of Obama’s attack on Syria. Clearly, this is a desperate count of “supporting countries.”

The Turkish puppet government, which has been shooting its peacefully demonstrating citizens down in the streets, with no protest from Obama or the Israel Lobby, supports “holding Syria accountable,” but not itself, of course, or Washington.

The puppet states of Canada and Australia, powerless countries, neither of which carry one ounce of world influence, have lined up to do the bidding of their Washington master. The entire point of having the top government job in Canada and Australia is the payoff from Washington.

The Obama cipher also claims the support of Japan and the Republic of Korea, another two countries devoid of all diplomatic influence and power of any kind. Helpless Japan is on the verge of being destroyed by the Fukushima nuclear disaster, for which it has no solution. As the radiation leaks spread into the aquifer upon which Tokyo and surrounding areas rely, Japan is faced with the possibility of having to relocate 40 million people.

Saudi Arabia, implicated in the transfer to al-Nusra rebels of the chemical weapons used in the attack, supports Washington, knowing that otherwise its tyranny is toast. Even the neoconservatives headed by Obama’s shrill National Security Advisor, Susan Rice, want to overthrow the Saudis.

Obama claims also to have support from France and Germany. However both Hollande and Merkel have stated clearly that a diplomatic solution, not war, is their first choice and that the outcome rests on the UN.

As for Italy and Spain’s support, both governments are hoping to be rewarded with the Federal Reserve printing enough dollars to bail out their indebted economies so that both governments are not overthrown in the streets for their acquiescence to the looting of their countries by international banksters. Like so many Western governments, those of Italy and Spain, and, of course, Greece, support the international banksters, not their own citizens.

The president of the European Commission has declared that the European Union, the central overlord over Britain, France, Germany, Italy, and Spain, does not support a military solution to the Syrian Crisis. “The European Union is certain that the efforts should be aimed at a political settlement,” Jose Manuel Barroso told reporters at the G20 meeting. The EU has the power to issue arrest warrants for the heads of EU governments that participate in war crimes.

What this reveals is that the support behind the liar Obama is feeble and limited. The ability of the Western countries to dominate international politics came to an end at the G20 meeting. The moral authority of the West is completely gone, shattered and eroded by countless lies and shameless acts of aggression based on nothing but lies and self-interests. Nothing remains of the West’s “moral authority,” which was never anything but a cover for self-interest, murder, and genocide.

The West has been destroyed by its own governments, who have told too many self-serving lies, and by its capitalist corporations, who offshored the West’s jobs and technology to China, India, Indonesia, and Brazil, depriving the Western governments of a tax base and the support of its citizens.

It is difficult to know whether citizens in the West hate their corrupt governments any less than do Muslims, whose lives and countries have been devastated by Western aggression, or than do citizens of third world countries who have been impoverished by being looted by predatory First World financial organizations.

The idiot Western governments have pissed away their clout. There is no prospect whatsoever of the neoconservative fantasy of US hegemony being exercised over Russia, China, India, Brazil, South Africa, South America, Iran. These countries can establish their own system of international payments and finance and leave the dollar standard whenever they wish. One wonders why they wait. The US dollar is being printed in unbelievable quantities and is no longer qualified to be the world reserve currency. The US dollar is on the verge of total worthlessness.

The G20 Summit made it clear that the world is no longer willing to go along with the West’s lies and murderous ways. The world has caught on to the West. Every country now understands that the bailouts offered by the West are merely mechanisms for looting the bailed-out countries and impoverishing the people.

In the 21st century Washington has treated its own citizens the way it treats citizens of third world countries. Untold trillions of dollars have been lavished on a handful of banks, while the banks threw millions of Americans out of their homes and seized any remaining assets of the broken families.

US corporations had their taxes cut to practically nothing, with few paying any taxes at all, while the corporations gave the jobs and careers of millions of Americans to the Chinese and Indians. With those jobs went US GDP, tax base, and economic power, leaving Americans with massive budget deficits, a debased currency, and bankrupt cities, such as Detroit, which once was the manufacturing powerhouse of the world.

How long before Washington shoots down its own homeless, hungry, and protesting citizens in the streets?

Washington represents Israel and a handful of powerful organized private interests. Washington represents no one else. Washington is a plague upon the American people and a plague upon the world.

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Congress Members Who Have Seen Classified Evidence About Syria Say It Fails to Prove Anything

Classified Syria Intelligence Fails to Prove Assad Used Chemical Weapons

Washington’s Blog
September 8, 2013

The administration’s public case for chemical weapons use by the Syrian government is extremely weak, and former high-level intelligence officers say that publicly-available information proves that the Syrian government likely did not carry out the chemical weapons attacks.

The Obama administration claims that classified intelligence proves that it was the Assad government which carried out the attacks.

But numerous congressional members who have seen the classified intelligence information say that it is no better than the public war brief … and doesn’t prove anything.

Congressman Justin Amash said last week:

What I heard in Obama admn briefing actually makes me more skeptical of certain significant aspects of Pres’s case for attacking

He noted yesterday, after attending another classified briefing and reviewing more classified materials:

Attended another classified briefing on #Syria & reviewed add’l materials. Now more skeptical than ever. Can’t believe Pres is pushing war.

And today, Amash wrote:

If Americans could read classified docs, they’d be even more against #Syria action. Obama admn’s public statements are misleading at best.

Congressman Tom Harkin said:

I have just attended a classified Congressional briefing on Syria that quite frankly raised more questions than it answered. I found the evidence presented by Administration officials to be circumstantial.

Congressman Michael Burgess said:

Yes, I saw the classified documents. They were pretty thin.

Yahoo News reports:

New Hampshire Democratic Rep. Carol Shea-Porter, for instance, left Thursday’s classified hearing and said she was opposed to the effort “now so more than ever.”

“I think there’s a long way to go for the president to make the case,” she said after the briefing. “It does seem there is a high degree of concern and leaning no.”

Senator Joe Manchin announced he was voting “no” for a Syria strike right after hearing a classified intelligence brieifng.

Congressman Alan Grayson points out in the New York Times:

The documentary record regarding an attack on Syria consists of just two papers: a four-page unclassified summary and a 12-page classified summary. The first enumerates only the evidence in favor of an attack. I’m not allowed to tell you what’s in the classified summary, but you can draw your own conclusion. [I.e. it was no more impressive than the 4-page public version.]

On Thursday I asked the House Intelligence Committee staff whether there was any other documentation available, classified or unclassified. Their answer was “no.”

The Syria chemical weapons summaries are based on several hundred underlying elements of intelligence information. The unclassified summary cites intercepted telephone calls, “social media” postings and the like, but not one of these is actually quoted or attached — not even clips from YouTube. (As to whether the classified summary is the same, I couldn’t possibly comment, but again, draw your own conclusion.)

***

And yet we members are supposed to accept, without question, that the proponents of a strike on Syria have accurately depicted the underlying evidence, even though the proponents refuse to show any of it to us or to the American public.

In fact, even gaining access to just the classified summary involves a series of unreasonably high hurdles.

We have to descend into the bowels of the Capitol Visitors Center, to a room four levels underground. Per the instructions of the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, note-taking is not allowed.

Once we leave, we are not permitted to discuss the classified summary with the public, the media, our constituents or even other members. Nor are we allowed to do anything to verify the validity of the information that has been provided.

And this is just the classified summary. It is my understanding that the House Intelligence Committee made a formal request for the underlying intelligence reports several days ago. I haven’t heard an answer yet. And frankly, I don’t expect one.

***

By refusing to disclose the underlying data even to members of Congress, the administration is making it impossible for anyone to judge, independently, whether that statement is correct.

The rush to war based upon skewed intelligence is very similar to Iraq.

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US: The Indispensable (Bombing) Nation

Pepe Escobar
Asia Times Online
Yes We Scan. Yes We Drone. And Yes We Bomb. The White House’s propaganda blitzkrieg to sell the Tomahawking of Syria to the US Congress is already reaching pre-bombing maximum spin – gleefully reproduced by US corporate media.
And yes, all parallels to Iraq 2.0 duly came to fruition when US Secretary of State John Kerry pontificated that Bashar al-Assad "now joins the list of Adolf Hitler and Saddam Hussein" as an evil monster. Why is Cambodia’s Pol Pot never mentioned? Oh yes, because the US supported him.
Every single tumbleweed in the Nevada desert knows who’s itching for war on Syria; vast sectors of the industrial-military complex; Israel; the House of Saud; the "socialist" Francois Hollande in France, who has wet dreams with Sykes-Picot. Virtually nobody is lobbying Congress NOT to go to war.
And all the frantic war lobbying may even be superfluous; Nobel Peace Prize winner and prospective bomber Barack Obama has already implied – via hardcore hedging of the "I have decided that the United States should take military action" kind – that he’s bent on attacking Syria no matter what Congress says.
Obama’s self-inflicted "red line" is a mutant virus; from "a shot across the bow" it morphed into a "slap on the wrist" and now seems to be "I’m the Bomb Decider". Speculation about his real motives is idle. His Hail Mary pass of resorting to an extremely unpopular Congress packed with certified morons may be a cry for help (save me from my stupid "red line"); or – considering the humanitarian imperialists of the Susan Rice kind who surround him – he’s hell bent on entering another war for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) and the House of Saud lobby under the cover of "moral high ground". Part of the spin is that "Israel must be protected". But the fact is Israel is already over-protected by an AIPAC remote-controlled United States Congress. [1]
What about the evidence?
The former "cheese-eating surrender monkeys" are doing their part, enthusiastically supporting the White House "evidence" with a dodgy report of their own, largely based on YouTube intel. [2]
Even Fox News admitted that the US electronic intel essentially came from the 8200 unit of the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) – their version of the NSA. [3] Here, former UK ambassador Craig Murray convincingly debunks the Israeli intercepted intel scam.
The most startling counterpunch to the White House spin remains the Mint Press News report by AP correspondent Dale Gavlak on the spot, in Ghouta, Damascus, with anti-Assad residents stressing that "certain rebels received chemical weapons via the Saudi intelligence chief, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, and were responsible for carrying out the gas attack”.
I had a jolt when I first read it – as I have been stressing the role of Bandar Bush as the dark arts mastermind behind the new Syria war strategy (See Bandar Bush, ‘liberator’ of Syria, Asia Times Online, August 13, 2013).
Then there’s the fact that Syrian Army commandos, on August 24, raiding "rebel" tunnels in the Damascus suburb of Jobar, seized a warehouse crammed with chemicals required for mixing "kitchen sarin". The commando was hit by some form of nerve agent and sent samples for analysis in Russia. This evidence certainly is part of President Vladimir Putin’s assessment of the White House claims as totally unconvincing.
On August 27, Saleh Muslim, head of the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD), told Reuters the attack was "aimed at framing Assad”. And in case the UN inspectors found the "rebels" did it, "everybody would forget it". The clincher; "Are they are going to punish the Emir of Qatar or the King of Saudi Arabia, or Mr Erdogan of Turkey?"
So, in a nutshell, no matter how it happened, the locals in Ghouta said Jabhat al-Nusra did it; and Syrian Kurds believe this was a false flag to frame Damascus.
By now, any decent lawyer would be asking cui bono? What would be Assad’s motive – to cross the "red line" and launch a chemical weapons attack on the day UN inspectors arrive in Damascus, just 15 kilometers away from their hotel?
This is the same US government who sold the world the narrative of a bunch of unskilled Arabs armed with box cutters hijacking passenger jets and turning them into missiles smack in the middle of the most protected airspace on the planet, on behalf of an evil transnational organization.
So now this same evil organization is incapable of launching a rudimentary chemical weapons attack with DIY rockets – a scenario I first outlined even before Gavlak’s report. [4] Here is a good round-up of the "rebels" dabbling with chemical weapons. Additionally, in late May, Turkish security forces had already found sarin gas held by hardcore Jabhat al-Nusra jihadis.
So why not ask Bandar Bush?
We need to keep coming back over and over again to that fateful meeting in Moscow barely four weeks ago between Putin and Bandar Bush. [5]
Bandar was brazen enough to tell Putin he would "protect" the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. He was brazen enough to say he controls all Chechens jihadis from the Caucasus to Syria. All they needed was a Saudi green light to go crazy in Russia’s underbelly.
He even telegraphed his next move; "There is no escape from the military option, because it is the only currently available choice given that the political settlement ended in stalemate. We believe that the Geneva II Conference will be very difficult in light of this raging situation."
That’s a monster understatement – because the Saudis never wanted Geneva II in the first place. Under the House of Saud’s ultra-sectarian agenda of fomenting the Sunni-Shi’ite divide everywhere, the only thing that matters is to break the alliance between Iran, Syria and Hezbollah by all means necessary.
The House of Saud’s spin du jour is that the world must "prevent aggression against the Syrian people". But if "the Syrian people" agrees to be bombed by the US, the House of Saud also agrees. [6]
Compared to this absurdity, Muqtada al-Sadr’s reaction in Iraq stands as the voice of reason. Muqtada supports the "rebels" in Syria – unlike most Shi’ites in Iraq; in fact he supports the non-armed opposition, stressing the best solution is free and fair elections. He rejects sectarianism – as fomented by the House of Saud. And as he knows what an American military occupation is all about, he also totally rejects any US bombing.
The Bandar Bush-AIPAC strategic alliance will take no prisoners to get its war. In Israel, Obama is predictably being scorned for his "betrayal and cowardice" in the face of "evil". The Israeli PR avalanche on congress centers on the threat of a unilateral strike on Iran if the US government does not attack Syria. As a matter of fact congress would gleefully vote for both. Their collective IQ may be sub-moronic, but some may be led to conclude that the only way to "punish" the Assad government is to have the US doing the heavy work as the Air Force for the myriad "rebels" and of course jihadis – in the way the Northern Alliance in Afghanistan, the Kurdish peshmerga in Iraq and the anti-Gaddafi mercenaries in Libya duly profited.
So here, in a nutshell, we have the indispensable nation that drenched North Vietnam with napalm and agent orange, showered Fallujah with white phosphorus and large swathes of Iraq with depleted uranium getting ready to unleash a "limited", "kinetic" whatever against a country that has not attacked it, or any US allies, and everything based on extremely dodgy evidence and taking the "moral high-ground".
Anyone who believes the White House spin that this will be just about a few Tomahawks landing on some deserted military barracks should rent a condo in Alice in Wonderland. The draft already circulating in Capitol Hill is positively scary. [7]
And even if this turns out to be a "limited", "kinetic" whatever, it will only perpetuate the chaos. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has referred to it as "controlled chaos". Not really; the Empire of Chaos is now totally out of control.

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Depravity Redefined: Selling US Slaughter in Syria

Tony Cartalucci
Infowars.com
September 8, 2013

The corporate interests driving the United States, its resources, and policy, have invoked dead children in the latest and grisliest propaganda campaign yet, directed at the American public to build support for an otherwise unjustified and universally unwanted war with Syria.

Image: The Summer of 1939, after staging border incidents to frame Poland for unwarranted aggression, Hitler orders the Nazi invasion of Poland. This would not be the first or last time a Western nation used a manufactured “casus belli” to start a war of aggression, now considered a Nuremberg offense and a crime against world peace.

The headline of CNN’s “First on CNN: Videos show glimpse into evidence for Syria intervention,” suggests that by watching the grotesque videos, some sort of evidence exists to justify an assault on Syria. Instead, the videos only show yet again, the crime, and only the crime – a crime which no one, including the Syrian government, denies occurred. What is missing, as has been the case since the US leveled accusations against the Syrian government on August 21, 2013, is any evidence at all as to who actually committed this crime.

Even upon reading the US’ own assessments of the incident reveal there is no evidence. The best the US can say is [emphasis added]:

The United States Government assesses with high confidence that the Syrian government carried out a chemical weapons attack in the Damascus suburbs on August 21, 2013.

Assessing with “high confidence” is not enough to execute a single criminal within the US justice system, yet somehow is enough to justify a military assault on a sovereign nation on the other side of the planet, whichposes no threat to the United States, and will inevitably lead to the death of Syrian soldiers and civilians, while assisting sectarian extremists, many of whom openly pledge allegiance to Al Qaeda. At face value, the US has no case against Syria, and no credibility after habitually using equally tenuous evidence as justification for military assaults against Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, and beyond.

That CNN is using dead children as “evidence” indicates that the dubious media outlet is attempting to manipulate the American public on the most visceral emotional level possible to sell a war the corporate interests CNN represents desires.

CNN and other Western outlets, have been caught overtly fabricating stories throughout the subversion of Syria, starting in 2011 when they disingenuously portrayed the flooding of Syria with armed extremists as the “Arab Spring,” up to and including featured interviews with “Syria Danny,” who was later revealed to be staging gun fire in the background of theatrical (and fabricated) casualty reports given to CNN’s Anderson Cooper.

Exploiting dead children to manipulate the public emotionally enables the US to circumvent not only its absolute lack of evidence, but hopefully the myriad of logical conclusions an otherwise rational, intelligent person might draw.

Regarding US Claims

US Claim #1: The Syrian “Regime” Used Chemical Weapons in a Desperate Bid to Save Damascus.

Reality: The US claims in its assessment that the Syrian government used chemical weapons in a desperate struggle for Damascus:

The Syrian regime has initiated an effort to rid the Damascus suburbs of opposition forces using the area as a base to stage attacks against regime targets in the capital. The regime has failed to clear dozens of Damascus neighborhoods of opposition elements, including neighborhoods targeted on August 21, despite employing nearly all of its conventional weapons systems. We assess that the regime’s frustration with its inability to secure large portions of Damascus may have contributed to its decision to use chemical weapons on August 21.

Yet it appears that mostly women and children were the victims of the attack – apparently killed in the middle of the night while they slept.

The US and its collaborators expect the world to believe: that the Syrian government risked using chemical weapons in Damascus, under the nose of UN inspectors, to clear out stalwart “opposition” fighters, and only managed to mass murder women and children in the process while giving the West a long-desired justification for military intervention. And despite “employing nearly all of its conventional weapons systems” and allegedly also sarin nerve gas, the Ghouta area was still under terrorist control after the attack.

It should be noted that Ghouta is on the very edge of Damascus, facing open country that stretches to the Al Qaeda infested Syrian-Iraqi border and the extremist hotbed of Al Anbar province in Iraq – implicating another, and the most likely culprit, Al Qaeda.

US Claim #2: The “Opposition” Lacks the Capabilities to Carry Out Such an Attack.

Reality: The US, in its assessment states:

We assess that the scenario in which the opposition executed the attack on August 21 is highly unlikely. The body of information used to make this assessment includes intelligence pertaining to the regime’s preparations for this attack and its means of delivery, multiple streams of intelligence about the attack itself and its effect, our post-attack observations, and the differences between the capabilities of the regime and the opposition.

The “opposition” in Syria is Al Qaeda. Al Qaeda allegedly carried out the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, destroying three (including Building 7) World Trade Center towers in New York City and striking at the very heart of America’s trillion dollar military might, the Pentagon itself – killing in a single day nearly 3,000 using nothing more than box-cutters, pepper spray, and 4 commandeered aircraft.

The US State Department since the very beginning of the violence has acknowledged that the most prominent fighting group operating inside Syria is Al Qaeda, more specifically, the al Nusra front. The US State Department’s official press statement titled, “Terrorist Designations of the al-Nusrah Front as an Alias for al-Qa’ida in Iraq,” states explicitly that:

Since November 2011, al-Nusrah Front has claimed nearly 600 attacks – ranging from more than 40 suicide attacks to small arms and improvised explosive device operations – in major city centers including Damascus, Aleppo, Hamah, Dara, Homs, Idlib, and Dayr al-Zawr. During these attacks numerous innocent Syrians have been killed.

It is also confirmed that many fighters joining al Nusra come from abroad, including from the recently decimated Libya, where a significant arsenal of chemical weapons have fallen into the hands of a sectarian extremist government which is openly funding and arming terrorists in Syria.

The US and its collaborators expect the world to believe: that despite Al Qaeda having struck at the very heart of US military might, after circumventing a trillion dollar defense system of unprecedented capabilities, it is now somehow incapable of obtaining and using against civilians, chemical weapons – a scenario the US has warned the world of and in fact, used as justification for invading Iraq in 2003. Either we’ve been lied to about the official explanation regarding 9/11, or we’ve been lied to about the capabilities of Al Qaeda in Syria – or more likely, both.

Conclusion

Clearly, at face value, none of what the US proposes regarding the alleged chemical attacks in Syria is rational. The propaganda rolled out against Syria is poorly retreaded lies from the illegal, abhorrent Iraq invasion and occupation and the more recent NATO atrocities committed against the Libyan people who are still suffering from NATO’s “humanitarian intervention” there.

What does it mean when the combined, multi-trillion dollar defense and intelligence resources of the United States, United Kingdom, European Union, Turkey, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and others are categorically incapable of providing a single shred of credible evidence to make their case? That evidence does not exist? Or that it does, but simply points the finger unfavorably in another direction?

Without actual evidence of who committed the crimes showcased on CNN, the first and most important question that must be answered is “cui bono?” – or – to whose benefit? Clearly, the chemical attacks carried out under the nose of UN inspectors, leaving shocking images of dead women and children used to manipulate the public on an emotional level, benefits the special interests driving US, British, European, and Arab policy. These are the same interests who in 2007 openly conspired to initiate a sectarian bloodbath to drown Lebanon, Syria, and Iran – a documented conspiracy being realized in full, beginning in 2011.

The danger of a Syrian government surviving the insidious machinations of Western special interests and restoring order in a unified Syria is an unacceptable outcome for Washington, London, Paris, Riyadh, and Tel Aviv. The unprecedented impetus behind this unpopular, universally opposed war with Syria reeks of desperation and a corporate-financier axis that has used and abused all of its tricks one too many times.

Whatever the outcome in Syria may be, these corporate-financier interests have exposed themselves and have long-since resigned their legitimacy. All that they do now, they do in the open, against the will of the world, amidst growing dissent, and against the background of a socio-technological paradigm shift undermining their institutions and international rackets permanently. However vigorously these interests appear to be digging their grave, it is still, ultimately a grave.

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No law will stop Obama’s democracy-bombs over Syria

Nile Bowie is a political analyst and photographer currently residing in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

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Published time: September 05, 2013 13:47

US President Barack Obama (AFP Photo/Jewel Samad)

US President Barack Obama (AFP Photo/Jewel Samad)

Regardless of how Congress votes, Obama is going to attack Syria. The president is doing his best to avoid constructive dialogue when the focus should be international law, not ‘international norms’ as defined by Washington.

As world leaders descend on the Russian city of St. Petersburg to discuss global tax regimes and international trade, this year’s G20 Summit is really a G20+1, with an extra seat allocated for the massive elephant in the room.

Many of the leaders attending have brought along their foreign ministers, as the summit will also informally serve as a global platform to discuss the sorry state of affairs in Syria. One can only speculate as to the substance of any exchanges between President Putin and his American counterpart and forced smiles will be in no short supply.

“He is lying and knows he is lying. It’s sad,” said Putin, of John Kerry’s address to the US Congress. That about sums it up – the lies and deceit of the Obama administration are so breathtaking, so innumerable, and they’re being trumpeted knowingly and shamelessly. Want a taste of highly moral and ethical narrative being championed in favor of “the Syrian people?” Look no further than the New York Times, with its recent headline “Bomb Syria, Even If It Is Illegal,” which argues that Obama and his poodles should “declare that international law has evolved and that they don’t need Security Council approval to intervene in Syria."

The establishment press is calling for blood, and they’re claiming the moral high ground while doing it – slightly pathological? You bet. The insane are really running the asylum on this one.

The Russians have been pushing for Geneva II with focused perseverance, but Barry and his flesh-eating rebels aren’t going to let that happen – not without a substantial sprinkling of Tomahawk cruise missiles over Damascus at the very least. The trigger-happy White House, with the most sophisticated military arsenal in the history of man, has demonstrated that it is unwilling to acknowledge any evidence that contradicts its cooker-cutter narrative – it is not open to reasoned arguments, and so the world yet again faces a dangerous precedent due to US intransigence.

To the surprise of many, the British parliament made clear that it would not drink the Cameron kool-aid, and even Ban Ki-moon chimed in to remind the Commander-in-Chief that the use of force is only legal in self-defense or with Security Council authorization.

Members of CodePink, Tighe Barry (L) and Medea Benjamin (2nd L) protest as U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (R) arrives at a hearing on "Syria: Weighing the Obama Administration's Response" before the House Foreign Affairs Committee September 4, 2013 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. (Alex Wong/Getty Images/AFP )

Members of CodePink, Tighe Barry (L) and Medea Benjamin (2nd L) protest as U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (R) arrives at a hearing on "Syria: Weighing the Obama Administration’s Response" before the House Foreign Affairs Committee September 4, 2013 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. (Alex Wong/Getty Images/AFP )

Air Force One flies above the law

International law? Pssh! Obama knows his bombs-for-peace program isn’t going to get past Russia and China, and in the absence of a unified coalition of the willing, he’s been forced to seek approval from Congress to maintain the façade of legitimacy.

When reading in-between the lines, it’s clear that the Obama administration will proceed with an attack on Syria whether Congress gives the green light or not – in all likelihood, Congress will vote ‘Yes’. The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) has broken its silence on Syria, and called for war.

Unfortunately, Congress can be bought and be sure that lobbyist dollars are being dealt out faster than you can say ‘Jabhat al-Nusra’ to seal the vote. “Emperor” Obama insists that he is not required to consult Congress to seek approval for his Syrian adventure, but did so anyway after receiving a letter from more than 160 members of the House of Representatives reminding him that to take the country to war without congressional approval is an impeachable offense, which doesn’t exactly bode well for his credentials as a constitutional lawyer.

And what about the evidence? The US government insists that it has “high confidence” that the Assad regime used chemical weapons, and that the evidence is so compelling that Washington is willing to go to war – before the UN team of chemical weapon experts have yet to make a determination. If you question this narrative, you are a conspiracy theorist. But what about the UN’s commission of inquiry led by Carla Del Ponte that implicated the rebels with using chemical weapons in Khan al-Assal? What about the Russian reports that claim the projectiles were crudely produced and clearly not military grade or consistent with the weapons in Assad’s stockpiles? What about reports that rebel forces were caught with cylinders of sarin nerve gas in southern Turkey near the Syrian border? As far as Obama is concerned, all of that has already been sent down the memory hole. It’s not the media’s job to present this information in a balanced and unbiased way, its only function is to sell war and educate the public about the benefits of twerking, as displayed by Miley Cyrus last week, stealing the headlines on CNN as US warships amassed in the Mediterranean.

A picture downloaded on September 4, 2013 from the US Navy website and taken on September 3, 2013 shows an F/A-18C Hornet assigned to the Blue Diamonds of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 146 launching off the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz in the Red Sea. (AFP Photo)

A picture downloaded on September 4, 2013 from the US Navy website and taken on September 3, 2013 shows an F/A-18C Hornet assigned to the Blue Diamonds of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 146 launching off the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz in the Red Sea. (AFP Photo)

Nobody believes the “limited strike” assurances

Just as in Iraq, the war on Syria is being sold as “limited strike” designed to hasten the rebel advance, but the original draft resolution for military intervention that Congress is set to vote on suggests otherwise. The wording of the text is so broad that Obama could virtually get away with anything he pleases. For example, the phrase “The President is authorized to use the Armed Forces of the United States as he determines to be necessary and appropriate” is deliberately vague. The intentional legal ambiguousness of the text raised eyebrows in Congress (clearly the executive branch was trying to pull a fast one) so much so that Kerry was forced to prohibit "boots on the ground," which he argued against on the grounds of Obama having options if Syria "imploded".

If there is a real danger of Syria imploding, which it very well might under a sustained campaign of US aggression, then the limited strike rhetoric should be seen as what is it – empty assurances designed to rubber stamp the war as quickly as possible.

The drive to military intervention in Syria is transparently a move to topple the legal authorities in Damascus. If that happens, it would create a power vacuum that would immediately destabilize the country and pit dozens of warring factions against one another as they vie for power – Syria explodes. Al-Qaeda and other jihadi militias will declare caliphates all over Syria while persecuting Alawite minorities and Assad loyalists. The instability could lead to the fracturing of Syria under ethnic and sectarian lines into several smaller states, and the chaos would swallow the currently war-torn and destabilized Iraq.

The toppling of Assad is a transparent declaration of war against Hezbollah and Iran and could lead to a major regional conflict that would kill large numbers of people. In essence, nothing about this situation indicates that it will be limited. Moreover, the United States has few strategic benefits here, while Saudi Arabia and Israel are dragging Washington by the nose into this conflict. When Kerry recently testified in front of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, he divulged that the House of Saud and Qatar even offered to bankroll the whole US operation in Syria – tough bargain for cash-strapped Washington hawks to pass up!

A handout image released by the Syrian opposition's Shaam News Network on July 29, 2013, shows an aerial view of destruction in the al-Khalidiyah neighbourhood of the central Syrian city of Homs. (AFP Photo/Shaam News Network)

A handout image released by the Syrian opposition’s Shaam News Network on July 29, 2013, shows an aerial view of destruction in the al-Khalidiyah neighbourhood of the central Syrian city of Homs. (AFP Photo/Shaam News Network)

Obama wears rainbow suspenders

Few have speculated about the recent “joint” missile launch conducted by the US and Israel, which was first denied, then classified as an atmospheric rocket for scientific research purposes, and finally it was admitted to be a test launch of a military rocket.

Nobody, not even NATO, was informed about it and the sketchy cover story only heightens suspicions. The Pentagon eventually admitted that the launch was carried out with technical support from the US Defense Department. This incident was probably not a legitimate Israeli missile defense system test – a launch during the incredibly tense situation in the region suggests a quality of psychological warfare and panic creation, but ultimately the Americans were measuring the preparedness and response of the Syrians to an unannounced missile launch.

Either way, the move was entirely reckless, but nothing else can be expected from Washington and Tel Aviv. As Putin said, the US is lying and it knows it’s lying. The US has fueled the Syrian conflict from the beginning under the euphemistic guise of “democracy promotion” – first by training and financing anti-Assad activists, and once they built momentum in Syria, arms and foreign fighters began pouring in.

The Syrian conflict could not have reached this point without a steady influx of aid from the US, via its stooges in Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and Qatar. Is it really worth it to pass the point of no return by setting off a powder keg in the region? The human losses thus far could pale in comparison to what would follow in a wider regional war. The further destruction of lives, of culture, and even of the Syrian state as it exists is what will follow.

If Washington was serious about peace, it would have called off the rebels and channeled all of its diplomatic muscle into Geneva II, and it would cooperate with Russia, the other largest stakeholder in this conflict. Obama could have met with Putin during this G20 Summit to bridge the differences and put effort behind a political solution, but no.

Obama will use his trip to Russia to meet with gay activists, a childish gesture that is entirely political – a weak attempt to stick it to Putin for his stance on various issues. Meeting with activists and members of civil society is not wrong in and of itself, but the fact that Obama chose to meet with LBGT activists at a time when his cooperation with Putin is most needed on Syria is a move that speaks volumes. Obama is demonstrably doing everything possible to avoid any attempts to make peace through dialogue.

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SYRIA Day 18 Since Chemical False Flag 07/09/2013

Letter from Trappist nuns in Syria: Fear and helplessness at impending U.S. attack

Posted on September 5, 2013

by Dr. Eowyn

http://fellowshipofminds.wordpress.com/2013/09/05/letter-from-trappist-nuns-in-syria-fear-and-helplessness-at-impending-u-s-attack/

Obama frames a U.S. military intervention against Syria as America’s necessary moral response to horrible offense against human rights — the Assad regime’s purported deployment on August 21, of chemical weapons (sarin nerve gas) on innocent civilians in a suburb outside of Damascas. (Note: Whether the Assad regime is responsible for the chemical attack is very much disputed. See “Article cited by Limbaugh on Syrian chemical attack being a U.S. false flag“.)

And yet, as the pic below points out, there have been — and are — countless human rights abuses across the world more egregious than the Syrian chemical attack, but the United States does nothing. Which, of course, begs the question:

Why the selective moral outrage in the case of Syria?

What makes the Syrian chemical attack so extraordinarily evil — more evil than, say, what the psychopathic regime in North Korea do to their people — which warrants the United States starting yet another war?

selective outrage

Has it ever occurred to Obama, Kerry, the senators who voted yesterday to authorize Obama’s war in Syria, that our “humanitarian intervention” will itself be the cause of deaths, pain, suffering, and hardships for the beleaguered Syrian people? That our “intervention” in the name of human rights itself violates the human rights and dignity of the Syrian people?

Trappists” is the common name of the Order of Cistercians of the Strict Observance, a Roman Catholic religious order of cloistered contemplative monks and nuns who follow the Rule of St. Benedict.

In March 2005, a small group of Trappist nuns from Tuscany settled in Aleppo, Syria, to found a new monastery serving isolated Christian communities in a land that’s predominantly Muslim but which is home to the most ancient of Christian traditions.

Below is a translation of a letter written on August 29 by the Trappist nuns, as they — and the people of Syria — await Obama’s decision on bombing Syria. The letter is seeringly truthful and heartbreaking.

Please get this letter to as many people as possible via Facebook, Twitter, email, etc.

~Eowyn

Trappist nuns

A letter from Trappist nuns in Syria: “Blood fills our streets, our eyes, our hearts”

Today we have no words, except those of the Psalms that the liturgical prayer puts onto our lips in these days:

Rebuke the Beast of the Reeds, that herd of bulls, that people of calves…oh God, scatter the people who delight in war…Yahweh has leaned down from the heights of his sanctuary, has looked down from heaven to earth to listen to the sighing of the captive, and set free those condemned to death…Listen, God, to my voice as I plead, protect my life from fear of the enemy; hide me from the league of the wicked, from the gang of evil-doers. They sharpen their tongues like a sword, aim their arrow of poisonous abuse…They support each other in their evil designs, they discuss how to lay their snares. “Who will see us?” they say. He will do that, he who penetrates human nature to its depths, the depths of the heart…Break into song for my God, to the tambourine, sing in honor of the Lord, to the cymbal, let psalm and canticle mingle for him, extol his name, invoke it…For the Lord is a God who breaks battle-lines! … Lord, you are great, you are glorious, wonderfully strong, unconquerable.

We look at the people around us, our day workers who are all here as if suspended, stunned: “They’ve decided to attack us.” Today we went to Tartous…we felt the anger, the helplessness, the inability to formulate a sense to all this: the people trying their best to work and to live normally. You see the farmers watering their land, parents buying notebooks for the schools that are about to begin, unknowing children asking for a toy or an ice cream…you see the poor, so many of them, trying to scrape together a few coins. The streets are full of the “inner” refugees of Syria, who have come from all over to the only area left that is still relatively liveable…. You see the beauty of these hills, the smile on people’s faces, the good-natured gaze of a boy who is about to join the army and gives us the two or three peanuts he has in his pocket as a token of “togetherness”…. And then you remember that they have decided to bomb us tomorrow. … Just like that. Because “it’s time to do something,” as it is worded in the statements of the important men, who will be sipping their tea tomorrow as they watch TV to see how effective their humanitarian intervention will be….

Will they make us breathe the toxic gases of the depots they hit, tomorrow, so as to punish us for the gases we have already breathed in?

The people are straining their eyes and ears in front of the television: all they’re waiting for is a word from Obama!

A word from Obama? Will the Nobel Peace Prize winner drop his sentence of war onto us? Despite all justice, all common sense, all mercy, all humility, all wisdom?

The Pope has spoken up, patriarchs and bishops have spoken up, numberless witnesses have spoken up, analysts and people of experience have spoken up, even the opponents of the regime have spoken up…. Yet here we all are, waiting for just one word from the great Obama? And if it weren’t him, it would be someone else. It isn’t he who is “the great one,” it is the Evil One who these days is really acting up.

The problem is that it has become too easy to pass lies off as noble gestures, to pass ruthless self-interest off as a search for justice, to pass the need to appear [strong] and to wield power off as a “moral responsibility not to look away…”

And despite all our globalizations and sources of information, it seems nothing can be verified. It seems that there is no such thing as a minimal scrap of truth … That is, they don’t want there to be any truth; while actually a truth does exist, and anyone honest would be able to find it, if they truly sought it out together, if they weren’t prevented by those who are in the service of other interests.

There is something wrong, and it is something very serious…because the consequences will be wrought on the lives of an entire population…it is in the blood that fills our streets, our eyes, our hearts.

Yet what use are words anymore? All has been destroyed: a nation destroyed, generations of young people exterminated, children growing up wielding weapons, women winding up alone and targeted by various types of violence…families, traditions, homes, religious buildings, monuments that tell and preserve history and therefore the roots of a people…all destroyed. …

As Christians we can at least offer all this up to the mercy of God, unite it to the blood of Christ, which carries out the redemption of the world in all those who suffer.

They are trying to kill hope, but we must hold on to it with all our might.

To those who truly have a heart for Syria (for mankind, for truth…) we ask for prayer…abounding, heartfelt, courageous prayer.

The Trappist nuns from Azeir, Syria

August 29, 2013

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High-Level U.S. Intelligence Officers: Syrian Government Didn’t Launch Chemical Weapons

Numerous Intelligence Officials Question Administration’s Claims

Washington’s Blog
September 7, 2013

Preface: Without doubt, intelligence is being manipulated to justify war against Syria.  Here, here,here, here and here.

Without doubt, the Syrian rebels had access to chemical weapons … and have apparently used them in the recent past.

Associated Press reported last week:

An intercept of Syrian military officials discussing the strike was among low-level staff, with no direct evidence tying the attack back to an Assad insider or even a senior Syrian commander, the officials said.

So while Secretary of State John Kerry said Monday that links between the attack and the Assad government are “undeniable,” U.S. intelligence officials are not so certain that the suspected chemical attack was carried out on Assad’s orders, or even completely sure it was carried out by government forces, the officials said.

***

Another possibility that officials would hope to rule out: that stocks had fallen out of the government’s control and were deployed by rebels in a callous and calculated attempt to draw the West into the war.

Reuters notes today:

With the United States threatening to attack Syria, U.S. and allied intelligence services are still trying to work out who ordered the poison gas attack on rebel-held neighborhoods near Damascus.

No direct link to President Bashar al-Assad or his inner circle has been publicly demonstrated, and some U.S. sources say intelligence experts are not sure whether the Syrian leader knew of the attack before it was launched or was only informed about it afterward.

Indeed, numerous intelligence officers say that the rebels likely carried out the August 21st attack.

For example, the Daily Caller reports:

The Obama administration has selectively used intelligence to justify military strikes on Syria, former military officers with access to the original intelligence reports say, in a manner that goes far beyond what critics charged the Bush administration of doing in the run-up to the 2003 Iraq war.

According to these officers, who served in top positions in the United States, Britain, France, Israel, and Jordan, a Syrian military communication intercepted by Israel’s famed Unit 8200 electronic intelligence outfit has been doctored so that it leads a reader to just the opposite conclusion reached by the original report.

***

The doctored report was picked up on Israel’s Channel 2 TV  on Aug. 24, then by Focus magazine in Germany, the Times of Israel, and eventually by The Cable  in Washington, DC.

According to the doctored report, the chemical attack was carried out by the 155th Brigade of the 4th Armored Division of the Syrian Army, an elite unit commanded by Maher al-Assad, the president’s brother.

However, the original communication intercepted by Unit 8200 between a major in command of the rocket troops assigned to the 155th Brigade of the 4th Armored Division, and the general staff, shows just the opposite.

The general staff officer asked the major if he was responsible for the chemical weapons attack. From the tone of the conversation, it was clear that “the Syrian general staff were out of their minds with panic that an unauthorized strike had been launched by the 155th Brigade in express defiance of their instructions,” the former officers say.

According to the transcript of the original Unit 8200 report, the major “hotly denied firing any of his missiles” and invited the general staff to come and verify that all his weapons were present.

The report contains a note at the end that the major was interrogated by Syrian intelligence for three days, then returned to command of his unit. “All of his weapons were accounted for,” the report stated.

***

An Egyptian intelligence report describes a meeting in Turkey between military intelligence officials from Turkey and Qatar and Syrian rebels. One of the participants states, “there will be a game changing event on August 21st” that will “bring the U.S. into a bombing campaign” against the Syrian regime.

The chemical weapons strike on Moudhamiya, an area under rebel control, took place on August 21. “Egyptian military intelligence insists it was a combined Turkish/Qatar/rebel  false flag operation,” said a source familiar with the report.

[A "false flag" is a ploy for starting war which has been used by governments around the world for thousands of years.]

Agents provacateurs are as old as warfare itself. What better than a false flag attack, staged by al Qaeda and its al Nusra front allies in Syria, to drag the United States into a war?

And 12 very high-level former intelligence officials wrote the following memorandum to Obama today:

We regret to inform you that some of our former co-workers are telling us, categorically, that contrary to the claims of your administration, the most reliable intelligence shows that Bashar al-Assad was NOT responsible for the chemical incident that killed and injured Syrian civilians on August 21, and that British intelligence officials also know this. In writing this brief report, we choose to assume that you have not been fully informed because your advisers decided to afford you the opportunity for what is commonly known as “plausible denial.”

***

There is a growing body of evidence from numerous sources in the Middle East — mostly affiliated with the Syrian opposition and its supporters — providing a strong circumstantial case that the August 21 chemical incident was a pre-planned provocation by the Syrian opposition and its Saudi and Turkish supporters. The aim is reported to have been to create the kind of incident that would bring the United States into the war.

According to some reports, canisters containing chemical agent were brought into a suburb of Damascus, where they were then opened. Some people in the immediate vicinity died; others were injured.

We are unaware of any reliable evidence that a Syrian military rocket capable of carrying a chemical agent was fired into the area. In fact, we are aware of no reliable physical evidence to support the claim that this was a result of a strike by a Syrian military unit with expertise in chemical weapons.

In addition, we have learned that on August 13-14, 2013, Western-sponsored opposition forces in Turkey started advance preparations for a major, irregular military surge. Initial meetings between senior opposition military commanders and Qatari, Turkish and U.S. intelligence officials took place at the converted Turkish military garrison in Antakya, Hatay Province, now used as the command center and headquarters of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and their foreign sponsors.

Senior opposition commanders who came from Istanbul pre-briefed the regional commanders on an imminent escalation in the fighting due to “a war-changing development,” which, in turn, would lead to a U.S.-led bombing of Syria.

At operations coordinating meetings at Antakya, attended by senior Turkish, Qatari and U.S. intelligence officials as well as senior commanders of the Syrian opposition, the Syrians were told that the bombing would start in a few days. Opposition leaders were ordered to prepare their forces quickly to exploit the U.S. bombing, march into Damascus, and remove the Bashar al-Assad government

The Qatari and Turkish intelligence officials assured the Syrian regional commanders that they would be provided with plenty of weapons for the coming offensive. And they were. A weapons distribution operation unprecedented in scope began in all opposition camps on August 21-23. The weapons were distributed from storehouses controlled by Qatari and Turkish intelligence under the tight supervision of U.S. intelligence officers.

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Who’s Lying? Brennan, Obama, or Both?

By Ray McGovern – War Is A Crime.org  

Posted on 06 September 2013

Obama Warned on Syrian Intel

September 6, 2013

Editor Note: Despite the Obama administration’s supposedly “high confidence” regarding Syrian government guilt over the Aug. 21 chemical attack near Damascus, a dozen former U.S. military and intelligence officials are telling President Obama that they are picking up information that undercuts the Official Story.

MEMORANDUM FOR: The President

FROM: Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS)

SUBJECT: Is Syria a Trap?

Precedence: IMMEDIATE

We regret to inform you that some of our former co-workers are telling us, categorically, that contrary to the claims of your administration, the most reliable intelligence shows that Bashar al-Assad was NOT responsible for the chemical incident that killed and injured Syrian civilians on August 21, and that British intelligence officials also know this. In writing this brief report, we choose to assume that you have not been fully informed because your advisers decided to afford you the opportunity for what is commonly known as “plausible denial.”

We have been down this road before – with President George W. Bush, to whom we addressed our first VIPS memorandumimmediately after Colin Powell’s Feb. 5, 2003 U.N. speech, in which he peddled fraudulent “intelligence” to support attacking Iraq. Then, also, we chose to give President Bush the benefit of the doubt, thinking he was being misled – or, at the least, very poorly advised.

Secretary of State John Kerry departs for a Sept. 6 trip to Europe where he plans to meet with officials to discuss the Syrian crisis and other issues. (State Department photo)

The fraudulent nature of Powell’s speech was a no-brainer. And so, that very afternoon we strongly urged your predecessor to “widen the discussion beyond …  the circle of those advisers clearly bent on a war for which we see no compelling reason and from which we believe the unintended consequences are likely to be catastrophic.” We offer you the same advice today.

Our sources confirm that a chemical incident of some sort did cause fatalities and injuries on August 21 in a suburb of Damascus. They insist, however, that the incident was not the result of an attack by the Syrian Army using military-grade chemical weapons from its arsenal. That is the most salient fact, according to CIA officers working on the Syria issue. They tell us that CIA Director John Brennan is perpetrating a pre-Iraq-War-type fraud on members of Congress, the media, the public – and perhaps even you.

We have observed John Brennan closely over recent years and, sadly, we find what our former colleagues are now telling us easy to believe. Sadder still, this goes in spades for those of us who have worked with him personally; we give him zero credence. And that goes, as well, for his titular boss, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, who has admitted he gave “clearly erroneous” sworn testimony to Congress denying NSA eavesdropping on Americans.

Intelligence Summary or Political Ploy?

That Secretary of State John Kerry would invoke Clapper’s name this week in Congressional testimony, in an apparent attempt to enhance the credibility of the four-page “Government Assessment” strikes us as odd. The more so, since it was, for some unexplained reason, not Clapper but the White House that released the “assessment.”

This is not a fine point. We know how these things are done. Although the “Government Assessment” is being sold to the media as an “intelligence summary,” it is a political, not an intelligence document. The drafters, massagers, and fixers avoided presenting essential detail. Moreover, they conceded upfront that, though they pinned “high confidence” on the assessment, it still fell “short of confirmation.”

Déjà Fraud: This brings a flashback to the famous Downing Street Minutes of July 23, 2002, on Iraq, The minutes record the Richard Dearlove, then head of British intelligence, reporting to Prime Minister Tony Blair and other senior officials that President Bush had decided to remove Saddam Hussein through military action that would be “justified by the conjunction of terrorism and WMD.” Dearlove had gotten the word from then-CIA Director George Tenet whom he visited at CIA headquarters on July 20.

The discussion that followed centered on the ephemeral nature of the evidence, prompting Dearlove to explain: “But the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy.” We are concerned that this is precisely what has happened with the “intelligence” on Syria.

The Intelligence

There is a growing body of evidence from numerous sources in the Middle East — mostly affiliated with the Syrian opposition and its supporters — providing a strong circumstantial case that the August 21 chemical incident was a pre-planned provocation by the Syrian opposition and its Saudi and Turkish supporters. The aim is reported to have been to create the kind of incident that would bring the United States into the war.

According to some reports, canisters containing chemical agent were brought into a suburb of Damascus, where they were then opened. Some people in the immediate vicinity died; others were injured.

We are unaware of any reliable evidence that a Syrian military rocket capable of carrying a chemical agent was fired into the area. In fact, we are aware of no reliable physical evidence to support the claim that this was a result of a strike by a Syrian military unit with expertise in chemical weapons.

In addition, we have learned that on August 13-14, 2013, Western-sponsored opposition forces in Turkey started advance preparations for a major, irregular military surge. Initial meetings between senior opposition military commanders and Qatari, Turkish and U.S. intelligence officials took place at the converted Turkish military garrison in Antakya, Hatay Province, now used as the command center and headquarters of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and their foreign sponsors.

Senior opposition commanders who came from Istanbul pre-briefed the regional commanders on an imminent escalation in the fighting due to “a war-changing development,” which, in turn, would lead to a U.S.-led bombing of Syria.

At operations coordinating meetings at Antakya, attended by senior Turkish, Qatari and U.S. intelligence officials as well as senior commanders of the Syrian opposition, the Syrians were told that the bombing would start in a few days. Opposition leaders were ordered to prepare their forces quickly to exploit the U.S. bombing, march into Damascus, and remove the Bashar al-Assad government

The Qatari and Turkish intelligence officials assured the Syrian regional commanders that they would be provided with plenty of weapons for the coming offensive. And they were. A weapons distribution operation unprecedented in scope began in all opposition camps on August 21-23. The weapons were distributed from storehouses controlled by Qatari and Turkish intelligence under the tight supervision of U.S. intelligence officers.

Cui bono?

That the various groups trying to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad have ample incentive to get the U.S. more deeply involved in support of that effort is clear. Until now, it has not been quite as clear that the Netanyahu government in Israel has equally powerful incentive to get Washington more deeply engaged in yet another war in the area. But with outspoken urging coming from Israel and those Americans who lobby for Israeli interests, this priority Israeli objective is becoming crystal clear.

Reporter Judi Rudoren, writing from Jerusalem in an important article in Friday’s New York Times addresses Israeli motivation in an uncommonly candid way. Her article, titled “Israel Backs Limited Strike Against Syria,” notes that the Israelis have argued, quietly, that the best outcome for Syria’s two-and-a-half-year-old civil war, at least for the moment, is no outcome. Rudoren continues:

“For Jerusalem, the status quo, horrific as it may be from a humanitarian perspective, seems preferable to either a victory by Mr. Assad’s government and his Iranian backers or a strengthening of rebel groups, increasingly dominated by Sunni jihadis.

“‘This is a playoff situation in which you need both teams to lose, but at least you don’t want one to win — we’ll settle for a tie,’ said Alon Pinkas, a former Israeli consul general in New York. ‘Let them both bleed, hemorrhage to death: that’s the strategic thinking here. As long as this lingers, there’s no real threat from Syria.’”

We think this is the way Israel’s current leaders look at the situation in Syria, and that deeper U.S. involvement – albeit, initially, by “limited” military strikes – is likely to ensure that there is no early resolution of the conflict in Syria. The longer Sunni and Shia are at each other’s throats in Syria and in the wider region, the safer Israel calculates that it is.

That Syria’s main ally is Iran, with whom it has a mutual defense treaty, also plays a role in Israeli calculations. Iran’s leaders are not likely to be able to have much military impact in Syria, and Israel can highlight that as an embarrassment for Tehran.

Iran’s Role

Iran can readily be blamed by association and charged with all manner of provocation, real and imagined. Some have seen Israel’s hand in the provenance of the most damaging charges against Assad regarding chemical weapons and our experience suggests to us that such is supremely possible.

Possible also is a false-flag attack by an interested party resulting in the sinking or damaging, say, of one of the five U.S. destroyers now on patrol just west of Syria. Our mainstream media could be counted on to milk that for all it’s worth, and you would find yourself under still more pressure to widen U.S. military involvement in Syria – and perhaps beyond, against Iran.

Iran has joined those who blame the Syrian rebels for the August 21 chemical incident, and has been quick to warn the U.S. not to get more deeply involved. According to the Iranian English-channel Press TV, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javid Zarif has claimed: “The Syria crisis is a trap set by Zionist pressure groups for [the United States].”

Actually, he may be not far off the mark. But we think your advisers may be chary of entertaining this notion. Thus, we see as our continuing responsibility to try to get word to you so as to ensure that you and other decision makers are given the full picture.

Inevitable Retaliation

We hope your advisers have warned you that retaliation for attacks on Syrian are not a matter of IF, but rather WHERE and WHEN. Retaliation is inevitable. For example, terrorist strikes on U.S. embassies and other installations are likely to make what happened to the U.S. “Mission” in Benghazi on Sept. 11, 2012, look like a minor dust-up by comparison. One of us addressed this key consideration directly a week ago in an article titled “Possible Consequences of a U.S. Military Attack on Syria – Remembering the U.S. Marine Barracks Destruction in Beirut, 1983.”

For the Steering Group, Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity

Thomas Drake, Senior Executive, NSA (former)

Philip Giraldi, CIA, Operations Officer (ret.)

Matthew Hoh, former Capt., USMC, Iraq & Foreign Service Officer, Afghanistan

Larry Johnson, CIA & State Department (ret.)

W. Patrick Lang, Senior Executive and Defense Intelligence Officer, DIA (ret.)

David MacMichael, National Intelligence Council (ret.)

Ray McGovern, former US Army infantry/intelligence officer & CIA analyst (ret.)

Elizabeth Murray, Deputy National Intelligence Officer for Middle East (ret.)

Todd Pierce, US Army Judge Advocate General (ret.)

Sam Provance, former Sgt., US Army, Iraq

Coleen Rowley, Division Council & Special Agent, FBI (ret.)

Ann Wright, Col., US Army (ret); Foreign Service Officer (ret.)

This Memorandum was posted first on Consortiumnews.com.

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Who Is Going To Buy Our Debt If This War Causes China, Russia And The Rest Of The World To Turn On Us?

By Michael Snyder, on September 6th, 2013

Syrian Rebel Forces

Can the U.S. really afford to greatly anger the rest of the world when they are the ones that are paying our bills?  What is going to happen if China, Russia and many other large nations stop buying our debt and start rapidly dumping U.S. debt that they already own?  If the United States is not very careful, it is going to pay a tremendous economic price for taking military action in Syria.  At this point, survey after survey has shown that the American people are overwhelmingly against an attack on Syria, people around the globe are overwhelmingly against an attack on Syria, and it looks like the U.S. Congress is even going to reject it.  But Barack Obama is not backing down.  In fact, ABC News is reporting that plans are now being made for a "significantly larger" strike on Syria than most experts had expected.

If Obama insists on going forward with this, it will be the greatest foreign policy disaster in modern American history.

Right now, both Russia and China are strongly warning Obama not to attack Syria.  And Russia is not just warning Obama with words.  According to Bloomberg, Russia has sent quite a collection of warships into the region…

Russia is sending three more ships to the eastern Mediterranean to bolster its fleet there as a U.S. Senate panel will consider President Barack Obama’s request for authority to conduct a military strike on Syria.

Russia is sending two destroyers, including the Nastoichivy, the flagship of the Baltic Fleet, and the Moskva missile cruiser to the region, Interfax reported today, citing an unidentified Navy official. That follows last week’s dispatch of a reconnaissance ship to the eastern Mediterranean, four days after the deployment of an anti-submarine ship and a missile cruiser to the area, which were reported by Interfax. Syria hosts Russia’s only military facility outside the former Soviet Union, at the port of Tartus.

China is also letting it be known that they absolutely do not want Obama to hit Syria.  On Friday, China issued a warning about what military conflict in the Middle East could do to "the global economy"…

"Military action would have a negative impact on the global economy, especially on the oil price – it will cause a hike in the oil price."

And according to Debka, China has also deployed "a number of warships" to the region…

Western naval sources reported Friday that a Chinese landing craft, the Jinggangshan, with a 1,000-strong marine battalion had reached the Red Sea en route for the Mediterranean off Syria.  According to DEBKAfile, Beijing has already deployed a number of warships opposite Syria in secret. If the latest report is confirmed, this will be the largest Chinese deployment in the Middle East in its naval history.

If the U.S. attacks Syria, Russia and China probably will not take immediate military action against us.

But they could choose to hit us where it really hurts.

According to the U.S. Treasury, foreigners now hold approximately 5.6 trillion dollars of our debt.  Over the past couple of decades, the proportion of our debt owned by foreigners has grown tremendously, and today we very heavily depend on nations such as China to buy our debt.

At this point, China owns approximately 1.275 trillion dollars of our debt, and Russia owns approximately 138 billion dollars of our debt.

So what would happen if China, Russia and other foreign buyers of our debt all of a sudden quit purchasing our debt and instead started dumping the debt that they already own back on to the market?

In a word, it would be disastrous.

As I have written about previously, the U.S. government will borrowabout 4 trillion dollars this year.

Close to a trillion of that is new borrowing, and about three trillion of that is rolling over existing debt.

If China and other big foreign lenders quit buying our debt and started dumping what they already hold, that would send yields on U.S. Treasuries absolutely soaring.

And we have already seen bond yields rise dramatically in recent weeks.  In fact, on Thursday the yield on 10 year U.S. Treasuries briefly broke the 3 percent barrier.

So what is going to happen if the yield on 10 year U.S. Treasuries continues to go up?  The following are a few consequences of rising bond yields that I have discussed in previous articles

-It will cost the federal government more to borrow money.

-It will cost state and local governments more to borrow money.

-As bond yields go up, bond values go down.  In the end, rising bond yields could end up costing bond investors trillions of dollars.

-Rising bond yields will cause mortgage rates to skyrocket.  In fact, we are already starting to see this happen.  This week the average rate on a 30 year mortgage hit 4.57 percent.

-Higher interest rates will mean a slowdown in economic activity at a time when we definitely cannot afford it.

-As economic activity slows down, that will be very bad for stocks.  When the next great stock market crash happens (and it is coming), equity investors could end up losing trillions of dollars of wealth.

-Of course the biggest threat of all is the 441 trillion dollar interest rate derivatives time bomb that is sitting out there.  Rapidly rising interest rates could potentially bring down several of our "too big to fail" banks in rapid succession and throw us into the greatest financial crisis the nation has ever seen.

Are you starting to get the picture?

And the 3 percent mark is just the beginning.  Brent Schutte, a market strategist for BMO Private Bank, told CNBC that he expects the yield on 10 year U.S. Treasuries to eventually go up to 6 or 7 percent…

"4 percent (on 10-year Treasurys) somewhere around the end of the year to early next year would be a good intermediate-term level. And if you look over the longer term, I don’t think that 6 or 7 percent is out of the question."

If that happens, we will experience a full blown financial meltdown.

Of course it would greatly help if Obama would back down and not attack Syria.  As Vladimir Putin noted at the G20 summit, large nations such as India, Brazil, South Africa and Indonesia are all strongly against the U.S. taking military action…

In reply to the question what other country in the world may theoretically be subjected to aggression similar to that Syria is facing, Putin said, “I do not want to think that any other country will be subjected to any external aggression.”

A military action against Syria will have a highly deplorable impact on international security at large, Putin emphasized.

He said he was surprised to see that ever more participants in the summit, including the leader of India, Brazil, the South African Republic, and Indonesia were speaking vehemently against a possible military operation in Syria.

Putin cited the words of the South African President, Jacob Zuma, who said many countries were feeling unprotected against such actions undertaken by stronger countries.

“Given the conditions as they, how would you convince the North Koreans, for example, to give up their nuclear program,” he said. “Just tell them to put everything into storage today and they’ll be pulled to bits tomorrow.”

He underlined the presence of only one method for maintaining stability – “an unconditional observance of international law norms.”

Can we really afford to have most of the international community turn on us and quit buying our debt?

Of course not.

Sadly, as I noted the other day, Obama appears to be locked into doing the bidding of Arab countries such as Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

In fact, as the Washington Post reported the other day, Secretary of State John Kerry has even admitted that they are even willing to pay all of the costs of a U.S. military campaign that would overthrow Assad…

Secretary of State John Kerry said at Wednesday’s hearing that Arab counties have offered to pay for the entirety of unseating President Bashar al-Assad if the United States took the lead militarily.

"With respect to Arab countries offering to bear costs and to assess, the answer is profoundly yes," Kerry said. "They have. That offer is on the table."

Asked by Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) about how much those countries would contribute, Kerry said they have offered to pay for all of a full invasion.

"In fact, some of them have said that if the United States is prepared to go do the whole thing the way we’ve done it previously in other places, they’ll carry that cost," Kerry said. "That’s how dedicated they are at this. That’s not in the cards, and nobody’s talking about it, but they’re talking in serious ways about getting this done."

Why aren’t we hearing more about this in the news?

Fortunately, despite the relentless propaganda coming from the mainstream media, a lot of members of Congress are choosing to take a stand against this war.  For example, U.S. Representative Tom Marino recently shared the following about why he is voting against military action in Syria

Secretary Hagel could not tell lawmakers who the U.S. could trust among the Syrian opposition, stating "that’s not my business to trust."  Like many Americans, I believe it is our duty as decision makers to be informed and confident when making choices – especially in those choices that could result in sending U.S. troops or money abroad.  It is no wonder Secretary Hagel isn’t in the business to trust when more players are added daily to the growing list of ‘Syrian opposition’—many of them jihadist, terrorists, known Al Qaeda affiliates, members of the Muslim Brotherhood and enemies of the U.S. and our allies.  To simplify, the Secretary of Defense was unable to tell us, after nearly three years of the Syrian Civil War, who the good guys are or if there are any at all.

And Marino is very right.  There are no "good guys" in Syria.  The "rebels" are murderous jihadist psychotics that would be even worse than Assad if they took power.

For much more on what the mainstream media is not telling you about the war in Syria, check out a stunning video report from investigative reporter Ben Swann that you can find right here.

Syrian Rebels

The picture above and below comes from the official Facebook page of one of the "rebel groups" in Syria.

I am sure that you do not need me to point out that the White House is burning in the background of the picture.

Al-qaida in Syria 2

Al-qaida in Syria 3

Al-qaida in Syria 4

These are the people that Obama wants to help?

According to NBC News, the rebels are also displaying images of the black flag of al-Qaeda on Facebook too…

Flag_of_Jabhat_al-Nusra

The image is one of eight photos posted on the official Facebook page of the “Al-Aqsa Islamic Brigades,”  a small armed Sunni rebel faction fighting with the Free Syrian Army, the main umbrella military organization of the opposition forces. Two other photos posted on the group’s page feature the widely recognized black flag of the al Qaeda in Iraq terrorist group, which operates freely in Syria.

Let’s assume for a moment that Obama is successful in Syria and that Assad is overthrown.

Al Nusra's Al Qaida Flag

That would hand Syria over to al-Qaeda.

Once in power, the "rebels" would slaughter or force the conversion of millions of Christians, Jews and non-Sunni Muslims that have been living peacefully in Syria for centuries.

To those that would support this war, I would ask you this question…

Is that what you want?

Do you want the blood of millions of Christians, Jews and non-Sunni Muslims on your hands?

If you are a Christian that is supporting Obama on this, I would ask you to consider an excerpt from a letter from Christian nuns in Azeir, Syria that I have posted below…

We look at the people around us, our day workers who are all here as if suspended, stunned: “They’ve decided to attack us.” Today we went to Tartous…we felt the anger, the helplessness, the inability to formulate a sense to all this: the people trying their best to work and to live normally. You see the farmers watering their land, parents buying notebooks for the schools that are about to begin, unknowing children asking for a toy or an ice cream…you see the poor, so many of them, trying to scrape together a few coins. The streets are full of the “inner” refugees of Syria, who have come from all over to the only area left that is still relatively liveable…. You see the beauty of these hills, the smile on people’s faces, the good-natured gaze of a boy who is about to join the army and gives us the two or three peanuts he has in his pocket as a token of “togetherness”…. And then you remember that they have decided to bomb us tomorrow. … Just like that. Because “it’s time to do something,” as it is worded in the statements of the important men, who will be sipping their tea tomorrow as they watch TV to see how effective their humanitarian intervention will be….

You can read the rest of that letter right here.

Also consider the following shocking video of Senator John McCain being confronted by a very emotional woman that says that her 18-year-old cousin in Syria was just killed by rebels loyal to al-Qaeda…

Any American that supports this war is aiding al-Qaeda.

Any American that supports this war is choosing to ally themselves withradical jihadist Christian killers that want to conquer the entire Middle East in the name of Sunni Islam.

If Congress votes to approve this war, then we should do what one site has suggested and send those that vote yes to Syria.

They don’t even have to fight.  We’ll just drop them off in the middle of the "rebel forces" and entrust them into the gentle hands of the al-Nusra Front.

But of course they would never go.  The ones that will be endangered will be the precious sons and daughters of other Americans.

This is not a war that has a good outcome for America.  Conservative voices and liberal voices all over the country are joining together to speak out against this war.

Hopefully Barack Obama will listen and cooler heads will prevail.  If not, things could spin wildly out of control very rapidly.

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Fox News Covers Infowars Story About Rebel Admitting to Using Chemical Weapons

Paul Joseph Watson
Infowars.com
September 7, 2013

After being linked by the Drudge Report, Fox News covered an Infowars exclusive story featuring a Syrian rebel admitting to using chemical weapons in order to follow Osama Bin Laden’s mantra of killing women and children.

The Fox News story concerned the overwhelming amount of evidence that the Obama administration would be backing terrorists who have been responsible for atrocities if it went ahead with an attack on Syria.

Lawmakers who were early champions of a U.S. strike on Assad regime targets in Syria have stayed mum as video clips emerge appearing to show opposition soldiers both killing unarmed men and indicating they have possession of chemical weapons.

The latest, a video on InfoWars.com, purported to show a rebel militant in Syria claiming to have chemical weapons, and saying he’s willing to target women and children. The video, which FoxNews.com has not been able to independently authenticate, only adds to the confusion over which side has the moral high ground and the reasons for U.S. military action in Syria.

The Fox report also links to a separate video which shows rebel commanders discussing chemical weapons. “The message is if the West doesn’t act, we (the rebels) too will have no red lines, and will use chemical weapons,” according to an analysis by the Middle East Media Research Institute.

Watch the original video of the rebel admitting to chemical weapons use below. The footage has already been viewed over 100,000 times on YouTube.

ORIGINAL STORY: Video: Syrian Rebel Admits Using Chemical Weapons

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Unintended Consequences From Potential Syrian Attack Continue to Grow

Bob Adelmann
The New American
September 7, 2013

Following an informal meeting on Thursday between President Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin, Putin made clear that he would continue to provide all manner of military aid to Syria’s President Assad.

S-300 similar to ones given to Assad by Russia. Credit: ShinePhantom via Wikimedia Commons

S-300 similar to ones given to Assad by Russia.
Credit: ShinePhantom via Wikimedia Commons

Such aid would include completing delivery of the S-300 defense missiles ordered by Syria but temporarily delayed over payment issues. The S-300 radar system can simultaneously track up to 100 different targets and deploy as many as 12 missiles in retaliation inside five minutes.

Rep. George Holding (R-N.C.) quizzed General Martin Dempsey, chairman of Obama’s Joint Chiefs of Staff, about the dangers of such an action: “We can certainly say that Russia would have options to strike us in that theater in retaliation for us striking their ally.… [What would the United States do] if Russia decided to strike at us…?” Dempsey demurred, saying only that “it wouldn’t be helpful in this setting to speculate about that.” But a retaliatory action of some sort by Russia is one possible consequence of a U.S. attack on Syria.

Another possible consequence came to light when the State Department intercepted an order from the head of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, Qasem Soleimani, to Shiite militia groups operating in Iraq, telling them that that they must “be prepared to respond with force” if the United States does launch an attack on Syria. An attack on Syria would put the U.S. embassy in Iraq’s capital city, Baghdad, one of the largest American diplomatic facilities in the world, at severe risk. In addition, Iran’s fleet of small, fast, highly maneuverable, and dangerous water craft could target one or more of the American destroyers currently lying off the coast of Syria awaiting instructions from Washington. The U.S. military is taking precautions to aid in the evacuation of American diplomatic compounds in the area, and, according to the Wall Street Journal, has already begun “making preparations … for potential retaliation against U.S. embassies and other interests in the Middle East and North Africa.”

Some of those “interests” are located inside Israel, which has promised to retaliate against any attack mounted in response to Obama’s “punitive war” against Assad.

Other consequences of Obama’s saber-rattling are beginning to show up in polls taken over the Syrian issue. Just since the middle of July, NBC News, CBS News, and Quinnipiac polls have shown Americans’ increasing unhappiness with Obama’s latest adventure, with the big Mack-daddy of them all, Gallup, showing that 53 percent of those polled disapprove of Obama’s foreign policy moves, while just 40 percent approve, a remarkable negative spread of 13 percent.

Such dissent is showing up in Congress as well. On Tuesday the Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted underwhelmingly, 10-7, for a watered-down version of a resolution allowing Obama to proceed with his plans to attack Syria, but with just a 60-day window with a possible 30-day extension before requiring him to cease operations. In addition to the demand for “no boots on the ground,” the resolution required the White House to come up with plans to install a negotiated settlement of differences between warring parties at the end of those 60 days. Of the 18 members of the committee, five Republicans and two Democrats voted “no” while liberal Senator Edward Markey (D-Mass.) voted “present.”

Liberals in the House of Representatives are also beginning to feel the heat and are starting to see the light. Liberal Rep. Jim McDermott (D-Wash.) told reporters, “I am not voting [for] my party. I am not voting [for] my president. I am voting [for] my country.” Echoing that sentiment was Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.), a prominent member of the Congressional Black Caucus (who also signed a letter last week urging the president to seek authorization before attacking Syria), who said, “If I had to vote today, I would cast a ‘no’ vote.” Liberal Rep. Rick Nolan (D-Minn.) not only is opposing Obama’s adventure — saying, “I am more convinced than ever that this will be a tragic mistake” — but he is also actively working to round up support against such authorization.

The president is sitting on an ice cube that is melting. The Progressive Change Campaign Committee announced the results of its own poll of 55,000 of its members on Wednesday, showing that 73 percent oppose Obama taking action in Syria. It sent a memo to all Democrats in Congress entitled “Your base opposes military action in Syria” and launched a telephone campaign to those members to pressure them to vote “no.”

When the Washington Post conducted a “whip count,” it found that of the 371 House members it contacted, 204 of them were either against authorization or leaning that way, while it could find but 24 members in favor. And when interviewed by Newsmax, veteran pollster Matt Towery of Insider/Advantage Polling, remarked: “I think the president is in extraordinarily deep trouble, as are the House members [John Boehner and Eric Cantor] who put their necks out on this.”

Obama is finding that there are unintended consequences of his desire to validate his “red line” warning issued last summer by punishing Assad for allegedly murdering more than 1,000 civilians with chemical weapons. He’ll also discover that the quagmire of conflicting interests in the Middle East guarantees him no easy exit without significant damage to his credibility and prestige. In what the Washington Post called one of the “most amazing letter[s] to the editor ever written,” well-known Egyptian blogger The Big Pharaoh explained the president’s predicament:

Sir:

Iran is backing Assad. Gulf states are against Assad!

Assad is against the Muslim Brotherhood. The Muslim Brotherhood and Obama are against [Egypt’s] General Sisi.

But Gulf states are pro-Sisi! Which means they are against the Muslim Brotherhood!

Iran is pro-Hamas, but Hamas is backing the Muslim Brotherhood!

Obama is backing the Muslim Brotherhood, yet Hamas is against the U.S.!

Gulf states are pro-U.S. But Turkey is with Gulf states against Assad; yet Turkey is pro-Muslim Brotherhood against General Sisi. And General Sisi is being backed by the Gulf states!

Welcome to the Middle East and have a nice day.

With Obama’s resolution barely squeaking by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and with mounting opposition to such unilateral adventurism, there are additional unintended consequences. Wrote Democratic pollster Doug Schoen:

Obama will seek to blame the Republicans if he loses the vote on Syria, as he has with issue after issue, time after time. On this occasion, I believe the strategy will fail — if only because as the United States comes to look weaker and weaker, so too will President Obama.

I don’t think this will be a history-making failure on Obama’s part, because I think his presidency is basically at a point where it is viewed as ineffective and pretty much at its end anyway.

[But] it would be very difficult for Boehner and Cantor to be reelected to leadership in the House, with this sort of revolt on their hands.

With the piling up of unintended consequences over Obama’s threatened military action against Syria, there appears to be only one conclusion: Obama’s image as savior and statesman will have been irrevocably shattered, Republican leadership in the House will likely have to be find other work after the 2014 elections, and Syria will be left to its own devices without the military “assistance” of the United States.

A graduate of Cornell University and a former investment advisor, Bob is a regular contributor to The New American magazine and blogs frequently at www.LightFromTheRight.com, primarily on economics and politics. He can be reached atbadelmann@thenewamerican.com

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Naval Forces Face Each Other Off Syrian Shores

RT
September 7, 2013

Mounting pressure for a Western strike on Syria has seen naval forces both friendly and hostile to Damascus build up off the embattled country’s coastline.

Credit: Public Domain

Credit: Public Domain

The potential of a US strike against Syria in response to an August 21 chemical weapons attack in a Damascus suburb gained steam on Wednesday, when a resolution backing the use of force against President Bashar Assad’s government cleared the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on a 10-7 vote.

President Obama has decided to put off military action until at least September 9, when the seemingly recalcitrant US House of Representatives reconvenes to vote on the measure.

Following the August 21 Ghouta Attack, which killed anywhere between 355 to 1,729 people, the diplomatic scramble to launch or stave off a military strike on Syria was mirrored by the movement of naval forces in the Eastern Mediterranean, off the coast of Syria.

The deployment of US and allied naval warships in the region has been matched by the deployment of Russian naval warships in the region.

While the Western vessels have in many cases been deployed in the event a military strike against Syria gets a green light, Russian President Vladimir Putin has said Russia’s naval presence is needed to protect national security interests and is not a threat to any nation.

Below is a brief summary of the naval hardware currently amassed off Syria’s shores.

USS Mahan (DDG 72) (AFP Photo)

USA

The US Navy has five Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyers off the coast of Syria, which its top admiral says is “fully ready” for a wide range of possible actions.

The USS Ramage, USS Mahan, USS Gravely and USS Barry are each armed with dozens of Tomahawk cruise missiles, which have a range of about 1,000 nautical miles (1,151 miles) and are used for precise targeting.

The ships are also equipped with surface-to-air missiles capable of defending the vessels from air attacks.

On August 29, the USS Stout was sent to relieve the USS Mahan, but a defense official told AFP that both ships might remain in the area for the time being.

Adm. Jonathan Greenert, the chief of naval operations, told an audience at the American Enterprise Institute on Thursday that the US ships are prepared for what he called a “vast spectrum of operations,” including launching Tomahawk cruise missiles at targets in Syria, as was done in Libya in 2011, and protecting themselves in the event of retaliation, AP reports.

In addition to the destroyers, the United States may well have one of its four guided missile submarines off the coast of Syria. At one time these subs were equipped with nuclear-tipped ballistic missiles. Nowadays, they are capable of carrying up to 154 Tomahawk cruise missiles.

It was also announced on Monday that the US had deployed the USS San Antonio, an amphibious transport ship, to the Eastern Mediterranean.

The USS San Antonio, with several helicopters and hundreds of Marines on board, is “on station in the Eastern Mediterranean” but “has received no specific tasking,” a defense official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

The deployment of the USS Antonio comes despite promises from President Obama that no amphibious landing is on the agenda, as the US has ostensibly ruled out any “boots on the ground.”

While the wording of the draft resolution set to be put before the House does not permit a ground invasion, the wording of the text could potentially allow troops to carry out non-offensive operations within Syria, including securing chemical weapons stockpiles and production facilities.

On Monday, it was also announced the USS Nimitz super carrier had moved into the Red Sea, though it had not been given orders to be part of the planning for a limited US military strike on Syria, US officials told ABC News.

The other ships in the strike group are the cruiser USS Princeton and the destroyers USS William P. Lawrence, USS Stockdale and USS Shoup.

The official said the carrier strike group has not been assigned a mission, but was shifted in the event its resources are needed to “maximize available options.”

The USS Harry S. Truman aircraft carrier and strike group is also in the northern Arabian Sea.

Russia

Russia, Syria’s longtime ally and primary arms supplier, has its only overseas naval base located in the Syrian port of Tartus, which has reportedly been used to support Russia’s growing number of naval patrols on the Mediterranean. However, Russia insists recent efforts to bolster its naval presence in the region are not in response to Western threats of a military strike.

Reported movements of many Russian ships in the region are coming from anonymous Russian defense ministry sources and have not been confirmed. RT contacted the Russian Navy to ask for confirmation of the reported ship movements, though no comment was forthcoming.

On Friday, for example, the large landing ship, Nikolai Filchenkov, was reportedly dispatched from the Ukrainian port city of Sevastopol for the Russian Black Sea port of Novorossiisk, from where it is eventually expected to reach the Syrian coast, a source told Interfax News Agency.

“The ship will make call in Novorossiisk, where it will take on board special cargo and set off for the designated area of its combat duty in the eastern Mediterranean,” the source said.

RIA news agency quoted an unnamed senior naval source as saying on Friday that the frigate, Smetlivy, would leave for the Mediterranean on September 12-14, and the corvette Shtil and missile boat Ivanovets would approach Syria at the end of the month.

The Russian destroyer Nastoichivy, which is the flagship of the Baltic fleet, is also expected to join the group in the region.

Deputy Defence Minister Anatoly Antonov, who was unable to comment on specific reports, said on Thursday the Russian navy currently had a “pretty strong group” there.

“The Russian navy does not intend to take part directly or indirectly in a possible regional conflict,” he told the state Rossiya 24 broadcaster.

“Our navy vessels are a guarantee of stability, guarantee of peace, an attempt to hold back other forces ready to start military action in the region.”

Also reportedly in place in the eastern Mediterranean are the frigate Neustrashimy, as well as the landing ships Alexander Shabalin, the Admiral Nevelsky and the Peresvet.

They are expected to be joined by the guided-missile cruiser Moskva.

The Moskva, set to arrive in a little over a week’s time, will take over operations from a naval unit in the region.

“The plans of the naval unit under the command of Rear Admiral Valery Kulikov had to be changed a little. Instead of visiting a Cape Verde port, the cruiser Moskva is heading to the Strait of Gibraltar. In about ten days, it will enter the eastern Mediterranean, where it will replace the destroyer Admiral Panteleyev as the flagship of the operative junction of the Russian Navy,” a source told Interfax on Wednesday.

Panteleyev incidentally, only arrived in the east Mediterranean Sea on Wednesday after leaving the Far-Eastern port city of Vladivostok on March 19 to join the Russian standing naval force as its flagship.

The SSV-201 reconnaissance ship, Priazovye, is also reportedly on its way to join the group in the Eastern Mediterranean. Accompanied by the two landing ships, Minsk and Novocherkassk, the intelligence ship passed through the ‘Istanbul Strait’ on Thursday, which helps form the boundary between Europe and Asia.

France

On August 31, French military officials confirmed the frigate Chevalier Paul, which specializes in anti-missile capabilities, and the transport ship, Dixmude, were in the Mediterranean. French officials denied they are in the region to participate in military action against Syria, but were rather taking part in training and operation preparations.

Despite their presence in the region, France currently has no ship-based missiles, so any offensive action would come from the air in the form of long-range Scalp missiles, similar to those the nation used in Kosovo in 1999 and in Libya in 2011, Time reports.

Italy

Two Italian warships set sail for Lebanon on Wednesday in a bid to protect 1,100 Italian soldiers in the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon, Syria’s southeastern neighbor, Agence France Presse reported.

The Italian ANSA news agency reported that a frigate and a torpedo destroyer boat departed from Italy’s southeastern coast on Wednesday and would provide additional protection to the soldiers in the event the Syrian conflict further deteriorates.

UK

As of August 29, the Royal Navy’s Response Force Task Group was deployed in the Mediterranean as part of long-planned exercise Cougar 13. The force includes helicopter carrier HMS Illustrious, type-23 frigates HMS Westminster and HMS Montrose, amphibious warship HMS Bulwark and six Royal Fleet Auxiliary ships.
The Trafalgar-class nuclear submarine HMS Tireless was also believed to be in the area at the time, after it was detected in Gibraltar.

On the same day that British media started touting Britain’s “arsenal of military might” which would be available in the event of intervention, British Prime Minister David Cameron lost a vote endorsing military action against Syria by 13 votes. In light of the shocking parliamentary defeat, Foreign Secretary William Hague said the UK would only be able to offer the US “diplomatic support.”

The UK’s Conservative Chancellor, George Osborne, confirmed that the UK would not seek a further vote on action in Syria.

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Syrian rebels say they’ll pounce on Assad’s forces if U.S. attacks

Syrian rebels say they’re planning a nationwide offensive in conjunction with anticipated U.S. missile strikes.

Syrian rebels say they plan to take advantage of a U.S. strike

Rebels with the Free Syrian Army sit in a damaged bus in Idlib province. If the U.S. launches a strike against the Syrian government, rebel commanders say, they will be ready to take advantage — particularly around Damascus, the capital, where they say insurgents are infiltrating in preparation to attack. (Aleppo Media Center / September 4, 2013)

By Raja Abdulrahim and Patrick J. McDonnell

September 5, 2013, 5:39 p.m.

CAIRO — Syrian rebel forces say they are planning a nationwide offensive in conjunction with anticipated U.S. strikes against the forces of President Bashar Assad, seeking to use U.S. military might to force a decisive shift in the country’s long civil war.

Rebel commanders disagree on the level of coordination they expect with the U.S. and its allies, and made it clear they hope the United States will do more than launch the limited strikes President Obama has proposed to deter Assad from using chemical weapons. The rebels have been disappointed by America’s reluctance to get involved more deeply in the conflict.

The issue is now before Congress. The Senate Foreign Relations Committee passed an amended resolution Wednesday approving military action to change the battlefield momentum in Syria away from the government. But many members of Congress, particularly in the House, have expressed deep skepticism about military involvement.

If the U.S. strikes, rebels said Thursday, they will be ready to take advantage — particularly around Damascus, the capital, where they say insurgents are infiltrating in preparation to attack.

"We are ready once the first rocket is launched," said Col. Qassim Saad Eddine, spokesman for the Supreme Military Council, which oversees the U.S.-backed Free Syrian Army. "We will attack the military sites, not just in one province, but all over Syria."

Saad Eddine said Free Syrian Army chief of staff Gen. Salim Idriss and the rebel command have been told they would receive some notice of a U.S. attack, perhaps a few hours in advance, but have not coordinated targets with U.S. or allied military personnel.

"The targets are already known," he said, referring to Syrian military and command installations.

But one opposition commander, Col. Abduljabbar Akidi, who heads the Free Syrian Army contingent in northern Syria’s Aleppo province, said by Skype that coordination on potential targets is already underway in joint operation rooms in Turkey and Jordan with "supporting countries," including the United States.

"If they strike the regime with a crippling hit, we will finish them off," Akidi said.

The Obama administration has long expressed concern aboutAl Qaeda-linked militants being a major force in the rebel movement, and several members of Congress have cited that concern in expressing doubts about U.S. military involvement.

A key question is whether rebel coordination would involve only the Free Syrian Army or extend to other factions in the fragmented opposition. In practice, disparate rebel brigades often unify in battle.

Some insurgents distrustful of the West worry that U.S military planners might try to attack Al Qaeda-linked rebel factions under the cover of an assault on Assad’s forces.

Nonetheless, after having been outgunned for more than two years, the rebels are clearly relishing the prospect of having U.S. firepower on their side. Commanders say they want to be in position to pounce, especially in Damascus, seat of Assad’s power, which is expected to be the focus of any U.S. bombardment.

"We are going to be ready to take advantage of the areas after a strike," said Abu Jamal, nickname for a commander with the Farouq Brigade, one of the largest insurgent groups.

In preparation for a possible U.S. attack, said one rebel spokesman, insurgents outside Damascus were sending fighters into the capital with light weapons to prepare to seize government buildings. Some are said to be stockpiling weapons for an offensive.

"All sides are working together to take Damascus if the American strikes are truthful, and if they are targeted at the regime," said Abu Harith, nickname for a spokesman with the Ansar al Islam brigade in Damascus, one of the largest groups in the capital.

Assad’s forces have been fighting hard to clear Damascus’ suburbs of rebel forces. The Obama administration accuses government forces of launching chemical weapons attacks there Aug. 21.

The rebels are not the only ones making preparations. Syrian officials have also had time to get ready.

The opposition has reported that the Syrian military has been moving missiles, aircraft and other assets from exposed bases to less vulnerable sites. Witnesses say they have seen Syrian soldiers crowding into schools and other facilities in Damascus.

To be effective, the opposition says, U.S. strikes must hit key targets such as the Mezzeh military air base in the capital or the army’s 155th Brigade compound near Damascus, reported site of Scud missile launches.

Abu Jamal of the Farouq Brigade said there were indications that the government was sending in tanks, other armored vehicles and artillery from embattled Homs province to bolster the defense of Damascus.

Rebels are hoping for a surge in arms supplies before any U.S. strike, but the evidence so far is mixed. In southern Syria, one commander has reported an increased number of arms, including antitank weapons, arriving via neighboring Jordan. But there has yet to be any uptick in materiel from Turkey, said a commander in the north.

It was not clear if there is any connection between the prospect of U.S. military action and the reported defection to Turkey this week of a former Syrian general and ex-defense minister, Ali Habib Mahmoud, a member of Assad’s Alawite sect no longer considered a key player in the government or its defense apparatus.

raja.abdulrahim@latimes.com

patrick.mcdonnell@latimes.com

Abdulrahim reported from Cairo and McDonnell from Beirut.

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Syria War Opposition Goes Viral: Americans Expose Graham’s “S.C. Nuke Threat” As War Mongering

Unprecedented explosion of resistance in the wake of independent news.

Kit Daniels
Infowars.com
September 6, 2013

In yet another example of the emerging power of alternative media, Americans are openly rejecting Sen. Lindsey Graham’s “us vs. them” rhetoric that if the U.S. doesn’t attack Syria, terrorists could nuke South Carolina.

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In an article by CBS Charlotte, Graham said that if the U.S. doesn’t proceed with military action against the Russian-backed Assad regime, Iran will not take “America’s resolve” to stop their nuclear weapons program seriously.

As a result, Graham said, terrorists could easily detonate a nuclear device in Charleston Harbor.

This comes directly in the wake of our report that Dyess Air Force base in Texas is secretly transporting nuclear warheads to South Carolina in a black ops move with no paper trail.

Many of the article’s commenters have openly called out Graham for “fear mongering” and linked his statements directly to our report, with some even suggesting that a false flag could be in the making:

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These comments showcase the devastating effect that the alternative media, such as the Drudge Report,Natural News, and World Net Daily, is having on the government’s ability to control the news in order to influence the viewpoints of Americans.

No longer is the public lining up front and center behind the “official stories” promoted by politicians which trend away from the truth.

Instead, they are starting to think for themselves and, as Benjamin Franklin so eloquently put it centuries ago, “it is the first responsibility of every citizen to question authority.”

Earlier this month, Politico reported that Barbara Bush, the daughter of former President George W. Bush, is “politically unaffiliated.”

Several of the article’s commenters didn’t buy it:

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This unprecedented mass exposure of political spin and habitual lying isn’t just limited to on-line comments.

As reported recently by Mikael Thalen, former House Representative Ron Paul called the recent Syrian chemical attack a “false flag.”

His son, Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.), has even stated that “we may well be allies with al-Qaeda if we go” into Syria.

Senator Ted Cruz (R-Tx.) said that the U.S. military shouldn’t go to Syria to become “al-Qaeda’s air force.”

Warmongering Sen. John McCain (R-Az.), who was recently caught playing electronic poker during a Senate war hearing on Syria, was even confronted by angry Americans opposed to an attack on the country during a town hall meeting.

A call to Graham’s office revealed that his staff is currently overloaded with inquiries about the nuclear weapons transfer to South Carolina.

Politicians such as Graham will continue to face massive resistance to their rhetoric as alternative media continues to explode in popularity.

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Man Calls for John McCain to be Arrested and Tried for Treason During Town Hall

You Tube
September 7, 2013

A local Prescott man called for John McCain to be arrested and tried for treason.

Amash: Boehner’s decision to back Obama was a mistake

By Rebecca Shabad – 09/06/13 02:21 PM ET

Speaker John Boehner’s decision to back President Obama on Syria was a mistake, according to Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.).

“If you’re Speaker of the House and you’re going to take a position in support of the war, which is contrary to what the vast majority of Americans believe, it might be nice to call up your GOP conference and say, ‘Hey, this is what we plan to do,’ but we didn’t get any of that,” said Amash, who is a frequent critic of GOP leadership.

“There’s constantly a vacuum in leadership, and whenever there’s a big issue where the majority of Americans are going one way, we see our leadership going with the president,” he said on the The Laura Ingraham radio show.

The Michigan congressman said he has spent much of the last two weeks meeting with constituents in his district about Syria. More than 95 percent of them are opposed to military action, he said.

Amash also took aim at other Republicans during the interview.

He criticized Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) for saying “Allahu Akbar” is equivalent to a Christian saying “thank God,” calling the assertion “ignorant and offensive.”

“Good people, whether they’re Muslims, Christians or Jews don’t scream ‘thank God’ when they kill people. It’s completely outrageous he’d say such a thing,” Amash said.

Amash was among a group of Republicans who were stripped of committee assignments late last year for rebelling against leadership.

Read more: http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/320751-amash-boehners-decision-to-back-obama-was-a-mistake#ixzz2eEilmS4r
Follow us: @thehill on Twitter | TheHill on Facebook

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Syria: A Vote Of No-Confidence In The President

Jon Rappoport
Infowars.com
September 7, 2013

As members of Congress reveal that calls to their offices are overwhelmingly against the war, and the House considers it may not vote at all, in order to spare Obama embarrassment, we can see a version of what refusing to vote for a president on election day looks like.

Credit: afagen via Flickr

Credit: afagen via Flickr

It looks like: no-confidence.

Every four years, I write about this possibility. Suppose only 19% of eligible voters showed up at the polls. It would speak loudly: The American people no longer trust the major candidates. They no longer trust the charade. They no longer trust the vote-count. They know both major candidates work for the same Globalist machine.

No-confidence.

Well, here it is. On the issue of the war.

I’m not saying the Congress will reject war. They may go ahead and drive the steamroller over the people. But it’s getting a little hairy for them.

And remember this. The media play any significant presidential victory as a signal that all his programs and plans are getting a boost. But on the flip side, that means a significant failure, in full view of the country, will register—despite the hype and explanations—as a weakening of his overall standing.

Washington DC registers such shifts in power like starving dogs smelling bloody meat. They attack.

War is supposed to be such a big deal that it’s a foregone conclusion, if the President wants it. He either sends the planes on his own, or Congress rubber stamps his position first. But this time, it’s different.

This time it’s: do we believe the President and his “evidence” and his claim that he’s taking the moral high ground; or don’t we. The question is in plain sight. It’s out there for all to see.

The push to war is such an obvious fabrication, only a complete fool or a dyed-in-the-wool Obama believer would opt for attacking Syria. The hypnotic Obama bubble is bursting, even for many of the faith.

In my last article on Syria, I pointed out that the super-secret Congressional intell briefing was a sham. It was all generality and no hard evidence. It was basically arm twisting.

So what’s left? Nothing. “Do what the President wants you to do.”

If Congress says yes, they’ll go down deeper into the dumper with Obama. These barnacles on the body politic can do one thing: assess self-interest and electability. They’re thinking about it.

They’re in the pressure cooker.

Taking a step back…do you think Obama woke up one day and said, “Hold on here. Assad just used chemical weapons on his own people. I have to take action. I have to punish him.”

Of course not. This idea came from somewhere else. It’s been on the table for years, as part of a Middle East strategy to destabilize the whole region. It’s, on one level, a Mossad-CIA plan, with a Saudi twist. On a higher level, it’s a Globalist operation, whose end game is order from chaos.

Partition nations into warring ethnic enclaves, disrupt the oil flow, create, therefore, planet-wide depression, and come in behind that to install new fascist dictator-puppets, bringing in international banksters to “re-finance” the whole region and own it from the ground up.

Obama is just another renter in the White House, playing the cards he was dealt. He goes along with the show, introducing his own prejudices, like any other President, and takes what he can get.

He’s no magic man, and now his juice is running out.

A no-confidence vote against war on Syria could, however, expand to mean no-confidence in any White House occupant from the two major parties.

Waking up is hard to do, but if the American people keep their eyes open, they’ll see that this Syria escapade is just one more example of an agenda that betrays any sane person’s idea of what America is supposed to be.

The only kind of transcendent President, in these times, would be one who, after a year or so in office, would hold a press conference and say, “I’ve learned I’m being run. Men are controlling the office of President. I’m supposed to take their orders. Here is what I know about them. Here are their names. Here is what they told me. Here is how they’re trying to coerce me. This is the story, the real story about what has happened to this country…”

To which people might say, “How could a President do that? They’d kill him.”

Exactly. That’s why I used the word “transcendent.”

Every American President sends soldiers to their deaths, and he kills people in distant countries. To be “transcendent” is to put his own life on the line, too.

That should give you some idea about why no-votes signalling no confidence in Presidents are vital. None of them will go as far as necessary to blow the cover on who really runs this nation.

This article originally appeared on Jon Rappoport’s Blog.

THROW THE BUM OUT

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Syria September 6th 2013 The US Government Stands Revealed to the World as a Collection of War Criminals and Liars

The US Government Stands Revealed to the World as a Collection of War Criminals and Liars

Paul Craig Roberts
Infowars.com
September 6, 2013

Does the American public have the strength of character to face the fact that the US government stands before the entire world revealed as a collection of war criminals who lie every time that they open their mouth? Will Congress and the American public buy the White House lie that they must support war criminals and liars or “America will lose face”?

The Obama regime’s lies are so transparent and blatant that the cautious, diplomatic President Putin of Russia lost his patience and stated the fact that we all already know: John Kerry is a liar. Putin said: “This was very unpleasant and surprising for me. We talk to them [the Americans], and we assume they are decent people, but he [Kerry] is lying and he knows that he is lying. This is sad.”
http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article36117.htm

When Secretary of State Colin Powell was sent by the criminal Bush regime to lie to the UN, Powell and his chief of staff claim that Powell did not know he was lying. It did not occur to the Secretary of State that the White House would send him to the UN to start a war that killed, maimed, and dispossessed millions of Iraqis on the basis of total lies.

The despicable John Kerry knows that he is lying. Here is the American Secretary of State, and Obama, the puppet president, knowingly lying to the world. There is not a shred of integrity in the US government. No respect for truth, justice, morality or human life. Here are two people so evil that they want to repeat in Syria what the Bush war criminals did in Iraq.

How can the American people and their representatives in Congress tolerate these extraordinary criminals? Why are not Obama and John Kerry impeached? The Obama regime has every quality of Nazi Germany and Stasi Communist Germany, only that the Obama regime is worse. The Obama regime spies on the entire world and lies about it. The Obama regime is fully engaged in killing people in seven countries, a murderous rampage that not even Hitler attempted.

Whether the criminal Obama regime can purchase the collaboration of Congress and the European puppet states in a transparent war crime will soon be decided. The decision will determine the fate of the world.

As for facts, the report released to the UN by the Russian government concludes that the weapons used in chemical attacks in Syria are similar to the weapons in the hands of al-Nusra and are different from the weapons known to be possessed by Syria.
http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article36116.htm

The Obama regime has released no evidence to the UN. This is because the criminal regime has no evidence, only made up fairy tales.

If the Obama regime had any evidence, the evidence would have been released to British Prime Minister David Cameron to enable him to carry the vote of Parliament. In the absence of evidence, Cameron had to admit to Parliament that he had no evidence, only a belief that the Syrian government had used chemical weapons. Parliament told Washington’s puppet that the British people were not going to war on the basis of the Prime Minister’s unsubstantiated belief.

Are the American people and the rest of the world just going to stand there, sucking their thumbs, while a new Nazi State rises in Washington?

Congress must vote down the war and make it clear to Obama that if he defies the constitutional power of Congress he will be impeached.

If the US Congress is too corrupt or incompetent to do its duty, the rest of the world must join the UN General Secretary and the President of Russia and declare that unilateral military aggression by the US government is a war crime, and that the war criminal US government will be isolated in the international community. Any of its members caught traveling abroad will be arrested and turned over to the Hague for trial.

Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Policy and associate editor of the Wall Street Journal. He was columnist for Business Week, Scripps Howard News Service, and Creators Syndicate. He has had many university appointments. His internet columns have attracted a worldwide following. His latest book, The Failure of Laissez Faire Capitalism and Economic Dissolution of the West is now available.

Top Chemical Weapons Expert Highly Skeptical of U.S. Case Against Syrian Government

Washington’s Blog
September 6, 2013

Jean Pascal Zanders is widely acknowledged as one of the world’s top chemical weapons experts, having been quoted in the last two weeks about Syrian chemical weapons by McClatchy, Time, theLos Angeles Times, Post-Gazette, Huffington Post, Der Spiegel, Agence France-Presse, Global Post, theTelegraph, and many other publications.

We interviewed Zanders by phone.

Q: You were quoted in the Huffington Post on August 30th as saying that the Youtube videos cited by the American government were not conclusive, as you couldn’t tell where or when the videos were taken … or even whether they were from the same incident or different incidents.

Do you still hold that view, or have you seen other videos that change your mind?

Zanders: No, I have not changed my mind. The general observation still stands, and it will stand until we have the actual report from the U.N. investigation.

I do not deny that a chemical with toxic chemicals has taken place. But I am just as concerned about how people are interpreting things in terms of a particular goal … which in this case is military intervention.

Living in a democracy we have the rule of of law, and we collect and analyze a variety of evidence collected at certain scenes before passing any kind of final judgment.

One of the concerns I have is if we look over the periods starting in March 19th with the major allegation of chemcial weapons use near Aleppo, Syria, everything is being reinterpreted as sarin.

When I look at video images that have been going around, what I see is a large number of people suffering from aspyhixia, but only a minority (if the photos are representative of the total picture) display symptoms that would correspond to exposures to neurotoxicants.

John Kerry used the term “signatures of sarin”. But signatures of sarin are things one can have from other organophosphorus compounds.

Q: You’re talking about the fact that pesticides or other nerve agents can give “false positives” for sarin? [Background]

Zanders: Yes, but not just that.

Somebody could have been – and this is purely hypothetical – exposed to an organophosphorus compound neurotoxicant which is produced in large volumes in industry. For example, for agricultural purposes.

On the low end of the spectrum, we have insecticide sprays which we can buy in the supermarkets. On the middle of the spectrum, we have organophosphorus compounds which are intermediaries of other products, or that are used in agriculture for pest and rodent control. I know specifically that the use of such compounds for pest and rodent control is common in the Middle East.

So, if someone were exposed to that in the right volume, there would be clear signatures of neurotoxicant exposure.

So it’s not just a question of false signatures in the sense of chemical tests giving a false positive, but also physiological symptoms that someone might show due to exposure to these commonly-used chemicals.

[The area where the chemical incident occurred was in a heavily-contested battle zone and had been heavily bombed. So that could have released industrial or agricultural chemicals.]

Q: Do you have any knowledge about whether the chain of custody of alleged U.S. tests which Kerry talked about are proper?

Zanders: No, and that’s part of my criticism that Western governments have overstated their case.

We do not know where the samples come from. And we do not know how representative they are for a certain area.

Certain samples could have been selectively given to Western sources for analysis. Assume that you do not know where a sample comes from … your whole chain of custody is compromised.

That’s why UN inspectors can only use samples they have collected themselves.

There was an article in the Wall Street Journal a couple of days ago saying that Prince Bandar got one alleged victim of chemical warfare out of the country, sent him to the UK, and that person is the basis of which the British made their claims about Syrian chemical weapons use. [Article.]

That goes to a single person. This is quite remarkable, if true.

Q: What other indications weaken the American, British and French argument that the Syrian government carried out a chemical weapons attack?

Zanders: The extreme focus on sarin – as if only government forces would be able to have sarin – doesn’t make sense. If the UN team were to come up with evidence that toxic chemicals other than sarin were used, does that prove that it was not the Syrian government which is responsible?

I personally don’t think that we have all the facts in right now to be absolutely certain. And I think this is reflected in the U.S. document with the terminology “high confidence” and David Cameron saying it’s his “judgment” or the government’s “judgment”, which reflects an interpretation of the facts.

In the U.S. document, there is not a single reference to physiological samples.

Postscript: Zanders says we must wait for the results from the U.N. weapons inspection before reaching any conclusions about who is responsible for the August 21st tragedy. [Background.]

 

ABC: Syrian Strike Could Be ‘Significantly Larger’ Than Most Anticipated

Washington Free Beacon
September 6, 2013

ABC’s Jonathan Karl reported President Obama’s plan for a Syrian strike could be “significantly larger” than most anticipated Thursday on “World News Tonight.”

Karl quoted an unnamed national security official who claimed the attack could do more damage to Assad in 48 hours than the Syrian rebels have done in two years:

JONATHAN KARL: […] ABC News has learned the president’s national security team is preparing for a significantly larger military attack than most had anticipated. The air campaign which is expected to last at least two days will potentially include an aerial bombardment of missiles and long range bombs fired from B-2 and B-52 bombers flying from the United States. That in addition to a relentless assault of Tomahawk missiles fired from those four Navy destroyers in the eastern Mediterranean. Those ships are loaded with nearly 200 missiles, plans call for firing the vast majority of them. As one senior national security official told ABC News, this military strike could do more damage to Assad’s forces in 48 hours than the Syrian rebels have done in nearly two years of civil war. That’s more than President Obama seemed to be suggesting just days ago.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: What we are envisioning is something limited […] We send a shot across the bow saying stop doing this.

 

 

Pictured: John McCain caught playing POKER on his iPhone during crucial Senate hearing on whether to take military action in Syria

  • He makes light of the situation by joking he ‘lost thousands of dollars’
  • He was spotted playing the game by newspaper photographer

By DAVID MARTOSKO

PUBLISHED: 23:49 GMT, 3 September 2013

Call him Arizona Slim. Or just the Maverick.

While America’s most senior foreign policy and military officials made President Obama’s case for using military force against the regime of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad on Tuesday, Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain was busy playing poker on his iPhone.

A Washington Post photographer snapped an over-the-shoulder picture of McCain casually betting play money on his electronic cards, while Syria’s fate was the subject of passionate statements and often carefully manicured rhetoric.

Scroll down for video

Upping the ante: An eagle-eyed photographer captured a picture of Senator McCain playing poker on his phone during the critical hearing on Tuesday

Upping the ante: An eagle-eyed photographer captured a picture of Senator McCain playing poker on his phone during the critical hearing on Tuesday

Did I just fold the nuts? McCain did what millions of us do during boring meetings at work, but his meeting concerned something more weighty than the latest sales forecast for widgets

Did I just fold the nuts? McCain did what millions of us do during boring meetings at work, but his meeting concerned something more weighty than the latest sales forecast for widgets

Call, raise, or fold? McCain shuffled his chips while the Secretaries of State and Defense discussed the destruction of a Middle Eastern regime

Call, raise, or fold? McCain shuffled his chips while the Secretaries of State and Defense discussed the destruction of a Middle Eastern regime

Minutes after the Post published the photo online, McCain cracked a joke in the hope of limiting what is bound to be an embarrassing news cycle.

‘Scandal!’ read his sardonic tweet. ‘Caught playing iPhone game at 3+ hour Senate hearing – worst of all I lost!’

As the news broke, McCain was waiting to appear on CNN to discuss the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing.

‘Occasionally I get a little bored,’ he admitted on the air, ‘and so I resorted.’

CNN associate producer Ashley Killough tweeted afterward that McCain ‘said he lost "thousands" of fake dollars’ during the marathon Capitol Hill session.

Funny or die: The senior senator from Arizona chuckled through his keyboard, but not everyone will think it's so hilarious

Funny or die: The senior senator from Arizona chuckled through his keyboard, but not everyone will think it’s so hilarious

McCain was set to go on the air as the story broke about his funny-money poker habit

McCain was set to go on the air as the story broke about his funny-money poker habit

McCain may have been distracted by the presentations from Secretary of State John Kerry, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel and Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey. He had, after all, already made up his mind to side with the president and his request for authorization to bomb Syria.

‘If the Congress were to reject a resolution like this, after the president of the United States has already committed to action, the consequences would be catastrophic,’ McCain said after her emerged from a closed-door meeting with Obama on Tuesday morning, ‘in that the credibility of this country with friends and adversaries alike would be shredded.’

‘And there would be not only implications for this president, but for future presidencies as well.’

The next time McCain meets with he president, the two might have more to discuss than just foreign policy: Obama played a game of spades – with physical cards, not a hand-held phone – while Seal Team Six killed Osama bin Laden in 2011.

Check your iPhone at the door: McCain was paying full attention earlier in the day, as he got a presidential briefing on Syria along with Susan Rice (L) and Lindsey Graham (R)

Check your iPhone at the door: McCain was paying full attention earlier in the day, as he got a presidential briefing on Syria along with National Security Advisor Susan Rice (L) and South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham (R)

For the benefit of poker fanatics, the Post’s photoshowed McCain calling a $200 bet while holding a little more than $16,000 in fake chips. His username? ‘J’s iPhone.’

The poker interlude isn’t the only memorable moment for the Senator from Arizona today, as he also came down hard on his Republican journalist counterparts on Fox News.

As part of his public appearances where he has been promoting an American military action in Syria, he was interviewed on Fox and Friends Tuesday morning.

Host Brian Kilmeade showed a clip of rebel fighters in Syria shouting out ‘Allahu Akbar’ after a missile hits a government target.

On the offensive: Senator John McCain scolded Fox News host Brian Kilmeade (right) for saying that he wouldn't support the Syrian rebels because they say 'Allahu akbar' after hitting government targets

On the offensive: Senator John McCain scolded Fox News host Brian Kilmeade (right) for saying that he wouldn’t support the Syrian rebels because they say ‘Allahu akbar’ after hitting government targets

‘I have a problem helping those people out if they shout that out after a hit,’ Kilmeade said.

‘Would you have a problem with an American Christian saying "Thank God! Thank God!"? That’s what they’re saying. Come on!

‘Of course they are Muslims but they are moderates. I guarantee you that they are moderates. I know them and I’ve been with them. For someone to say "Allahu Akbar" is about as offensive as someone saying "Thank God."’

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2410616/Sen-John-McCain-playing-POKER-crucial-Senate-hearing-military-action-Syria.html#ixzz2e8rEeAKY
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

 

McCain Confronted on Syria at Angry Town Hall Meeting

Woman whose cousin was killed by US-backed rebels pleads with Senator

Paul Joseph Watson
Infowars.com
September 6, 2013

Senator John McCain was confronted on several occasions by Americans opposed to an attack on Syria during an angry town hall meeting that underscored polls which show massive resistance to military intervention.

Fresh off the back of public criticism for being photographed playing poker on his phone during a crucial Senate hearing on Syria, McCain was told in no uncertain terms during a town hall meeting in Arizona that his advocacy for using US military might to topple Bashar Al-Assad was not shared by his constituents.

“We didn’t send you to make war for us. We sent you to stop the war,” one man said as the audience applauded.

“Why are you not listening to the people and staying out of Syria? It’s not our fight,” added another man, complaining that lawmakers were not representing the will of voters.

During the event another man stood next to McCain before revealing a sign which read, “”Don’t Bomb Syria!!!”

The most passionate confrontation undoubtedly involved a woman whose 18-year-old cousin was killed ten days ago in Syria by US-backed rebels.

“They’re not Syrian, they’re coming to Syria from all over the world to fight….we cannot afford to turn Syria into another Iraq or Afghanistan,” she said.

“You can do it by diplomacy, not bombs, Sen. McCain. We cannot afford to shed more Syrian blood,” added the woman.

“I beg you – my family is there, there’s so many good Syrians, the majority of the Syrian people want to save their country and you also need to listen to the majority of the American people who do not want you to go there….enough is enough….we don’t want Al-Qaeda to take over,” she said as the crowd cheered. She went on to highlight the attacks on Christians in Syria, saying she could trace her family back to the bible.

“We refused to be forced to leave and flee and be considered collateral damage,” the woman concluded.

McCain responded by asserting he knew the rebels in Syria and that they were moderates. However, the rebels McCain met with in Syria earlier this year were “a known affiliate of the rebel group responsible for the kidnapping of 11 Lebanese Shiite pilgrims,” according to reports.

The deputy leader of the so-called “moderate” FSA also recently made it clear that, “the mujahideen rebels’ supreme council will disband unless the West drops its demands to steer clear of violent jihadists,” reported National Review.

Perhaps the most well known if not the most brutal atrocity committed by US-backed rebels, where an opposition militant is seen cutting out and eating the heart of a Syrian soldier, was committed by FSA commander Abu Sakkar, hardly the action of a “moderate”.

Public fury with McCain’s advocacy of an attack on Syria is unsurprising given polls which show a clear majority of Americans oppose military intervention. A Reuters/Ipsos poll found that just 9 per cent thought the US should intervene in Syria’s civil war, with 60 per cent opposed.

Watch the full video of a woman whose cousin was killed by US-backed rebels in Syria confronting McCain below.

Now watch Marine Infantry Combat Veteran Bryan Bates outline his opposition to an attack on Syria before walking out on McCain.

John McCain ‘s Completely INSANE

U.S. Prepares for War in the Middle East

Claims Iran and Hezbollah coordinating attacks

Kurt Nimmo
Infowars.com
September 6, 2013

USS Nimitz. Photo: fas.org

USS Nimitz. Photo: fas.org

The United States is prepared to do battle with Iran and Hezbollah when it takes out Syria in response to its alleged weapons of mass destruction, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Late Thursday, the newspaper reported the U.S. government “intercepted an order from Iran to militants in Iraq to attack the U.S. Embassy and other American interests in Baghdad in the event of a strike on Syria,” one of “an expanding array of reprisal threats across the region.”

The intercepted message purportedly came from Qasem Soleimani, the head of Revolutionary Guards’ Qods Force, and was delivered to Shiite militia groups in Iraq, according to U.S. Officials. “In it, Mr. Soleimani said Shiite groups must be prepared to respond with force after a U.S. strike on Syria. Iranian officials didn’t respond to requests for comment,” the Journal reports.

The U.S. predicts Iran will mobilize its fleet of fast boats in the Persian Gulf where U.S. warships are stationed.

In early 2012, the U.S. military claimed it was harassed by Iranian boats. At the time, Israeli intelligence officer Avi Perry predicted a “surprise” Pearl Harbor-style Iranian attack on an American warship in the Persian Gulf as a pretext for the U.S. to launch an all-out attack on Iran. No such attack occurred.

Amid escalating tension, in July, 2012, a security team aboard the oil supply ship U.S.N.S. Rappahannockfired on a boat in the Persian Gulf, killing one and injuring three others.

In addition to predicting attacks in the Persian Gulf, the newspaper reported the government’s belief Hezbollah will attack the U.S. Embassy in Beirut in response to a Syrian attack.

The Pentagon has deployed a number of warships in the region, a move that has heightened fears that an attack on Syria will rapidly escalate into a larger war.

Deployments include a strike group attached to the USS Nimitz aircraft carrier and three destroyers positioned in the Red Sea. An amphibious ship, the USS San Antonio, is currently stationed in the Eastern Mediterranean.

The U.S. military has also activated Marines and “other assets” to be used during the strike, ostensibly to evacuate embassies and diplomatic compounds in the region. The State Department made preparations last week for the possibility of retaliation against U.S. embassies and other interests in the Middle East and North Africa, the Journal reports.

In addition, the State Department issued an alert on Thursday warning against nonessential travel to Iraq and cited terrorist activity “at levels unseen since 2008.”

 

US Strike on Syria Will Make Obama ‘War President’ – Russian Lawmaker

Topic: Possible Intervention in Syria

US President Barack Obama pictured with former US President George W. Bush

US President Barack Obama pictured with former US President George W. Bush

© AFP 2013/ Jewel Samad

12:04 06/09/2013

MOSCOW, September 6 (RIA Novosti) – Launching an attack on Syria would make US President, and Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Barack Obama “a war president” a senior Russian lawmaker wrote on Twitter Friday.

“They said Obama does not want to go to war in Syria. This myth was demolished by Obama himself. He has eventually turned into a “war president,” a second [George W.] Bush,” said Alexei Pushkov, who heads the international affairs committee in the lower chamber of the Russian parliament, the State Duma, and who has earned himself a reputation as a prolific Tweeter.

Obama recently asked the US Congress to support a limited military intervention in Syria because of the regime’s alleged use of chemical weapons, which the US claims killed over a thousand civilians in one attack last month.

The Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee approved a motion backing a military strike Wednesday, with a final vote expected next week after Congress reconvenes Monday.

In another comment on Twitter last week, Pushkov said President Obama should be stripped of his Nobel Peace Prize if the United States carries out a military strike on Syria.

Obama was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009 for “extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples,” according to a statement on the prize’s website.

Church Leaders: Syrian Christians Need Help, Not Military Intervention

September 6, 2013 – 1:39 AM


By Patrick Goodenough

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syrian church

A destroyed church in the Syrian city of Homs (Photo: Barnabas Fund)

(CNSNews.com) – Ahead of a day of prayer and fasting for Syria on Saturday, called for by Pope Francis, a Christian charity working in the country said church leaders there are appealing for help, not military intervention.

“As U.S. President Barack Obama rallies support for a military strike on Syria, Christian leaders from the country have called on Western nations to focus their efforts instead on providing aid to help meet the ‘dire need’ of the suffering people,” said Barnabas Fund.

In a letter Thursday to G20 leaders meeting in Russia, Pope Francis urged them to “lay aside the futile pursuit of a military solution” in Syria.

“Rather, let there be a renewed commitment to seek, with courage and determination, a peaceful solution through dialogue and negotiation of the parties, unanimously supported by the international community,” he wrote.

“Moreover, all governments have the moral duty to do everything possible to ensure humanitarian assistance to those suffering because of the conflict, both within and beyond the country’s borders.”

Asked for the White House response to the pope’s appeal, deputy national security advisor Ben Rhodes told reporters in St. Petersburg he had not seen the letter, but “clearly, we always welcome the views of the Catholic Church, which has a longstanding commitment to the promotion of peace.”

The pope has called for “a special day of fasting and prayer for peace in Syria” on Saturday, inviting “men and women of goodwill” of whatever faith to join wherever and however they may, and for Catholics in Rome to take part in an evening prayer vigil in St. Peter’s Square.

Also Thursday, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) sent letters to every member of Congress, urging them not to support military action in Syria.

The letter from USCCB president Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York and the chairman of its committee on international justice and peace, Bishop Richard Pates of Des Moines, said Pope Francis and bishops in the Middle East “have made it clear that a military attack will be counterproductive, will exacerbate an already deadly situation, and will have unintended negative consequences.”

“Their concerns strongly resonate in American public opinion that questions the wisdom of intervention and in the lack of international consensus.”

Syria church mosaic

A religious mosiac, its protective glass broken, is seen in a church damaged by mortar fire in a Christian village in Idlib province, captured by rebels in January 2013. (AP Photo/Hussein Malla)

‘What guarantees can you give Christians?’

Barnabas Fund, an international organization supporting Christians in Muslim-majority countries, quoted one of its partners in Syria, Aleppo Baptist leader Jany Haddad, as saying, “We urge Western authorities to take the measures necessary to protect our Christian civilians in the country. We ask them to shift their thoughts towards increasing financial support to our Christian societies and communities because of their dire need at this time.”

“On behalf of Syrian Christians and other minority communities, we entreat Western governments to alleviate the suffering of our people by providing urgent humanitarian aid, as our communities are in dire need,” said Rosangela Jarjour, the Homs-based general-secretary of the Fellowship of Middle East Evangelical Churches.

“The majority have been displaced from their homes with hardly anything to subsist on; most are jobless, homeless, and in danger of abduction and assaults by radical militants,” she said.

Barnabas Fund international director Patrick Sookhdeo said “the plight of Syria’s Christians has been tragically overlooked by Western governments. I pray that they will heed the cries of these Christian leaders from the country as they consider what action to take.”

Since the Syrian civil war began Barnabas Fund says it has provided practical aid to an estimated 139,000 Syrian Christians, many of whom are internally displaced, “having had to flee their homes as a result of targeted violence against them by Islamist rebels.”

“Christians are being singled out for violent attack, kidnap, torture, sexual assault and murder; their homes have been taken over in violent raids. Christian leaders have been particularly targeted, and numerous church buildings have been deliberately destroyed.”

The organization’s honorary U.S. director, Anglican Bishop Julian Dobbs, has written to Obama, urging him to consider the consequences for Christians as he mulls military action against the Assad regime in response to an Aug. 21 chemical weapons attack.

“Military action that results in the demise of President Assad’s forces would almost certainly allow a strengthened al-Qaeda presence in Syria that would result in significant and increased persecution of Syrian Christians,” he wrote.

Citing “the destruction of the Iraqi Christian community” in the aftermath of the U.S.-led war there, Dobbs asked Obama, “What guarantees of security and religious freedom can you and your administration give to the already suffering Christian community in Syria if a military intervention is initiated by the United States?”

Dobbs concluded by noting that Muslim extremists view minority Christians as allies of the West on account of their faith, and that Christians will therefore be “at greater risk than other minorities in the aftermath of a U.S. strike on their country.”

archbishop of canterbury

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby (AP Photo, File)

‘Open season on Christians’

The titular leader of the world’s 77 million Anglicans (Episcopalians), Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, who earlier urged caution as the British government weighed arming Syrian rebels, is also leery about military intervention.

During a recent speech in the House of Lords in London, he said a senior Christian leader in the region had told him that “intervention from abroad will declare open season on the Christian communities.”

“They will surely suffer terribly (as they already are) if action goes ahead,” Welby continued. “And that consequence has to be weighed against the consequences of inaction.”

“If we take action that diminishes the chance of peace and reconciliation, when inevitably a political solution has to be found, whether it’s near term or in the long term future, then we will have contributed to more killing and this war will be deeply unjust,” he said.

Barnabas Fund director Sookhdeo, an expert on radical Islam who is also director of the non-profit Institute for the Study of Islam and Christianity, said in a new analysis on the Syrian civil war that because of the positions being taken by various parties “the Christians find themselves increasingly being supported by China and Russia whereas their historic supporters in terms of religious liberty and human rights are turning out to be the ones who are supporting the radical Islamists and denying their fundamental freedoms.”

“The West, in supporting the rebels backed by Saudi Arabia and Qatar, may well find that they are closely supporting radical Islamists allied to al-Qaeda, which could not only prove to be the death knell of a moderate, tolerant, multi-religious Syria in the aftermath of Assad but also result in a radical Islamist government riven with sectarianism and extremism that may ultimately destroy the Church,” he argued.

“So as Barack Obama this week tries to rally support for his plans to conduct a military strike on Syria, he and other Western leaders need to consider the wider background to this conflict. I am greatly concerned that any military intervention will only further escalate hostilities in an already highly charged environment.”

– See more at: http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/patrick-goodenough/church-leaders-syrian-christians-need-help-not-military-intervention#sthash.M0xZeq6h.dpuf

 

Mixed Messages: White House Rules Out Strike Without Congress Vote, Obama Does Not

Not even Obama’s aides know what he’s planning
Steve Watson
Infowars.com
Sept 6, 2013

The White House and the President have obviously not managed to get their story straight with each other on Syria, as aides today ruled out a military strike without Congressional approval, while Obama himself refused to do the same.

White House deputy national security adviser Tony Blinken told reporters on Friday that if Congress rejects President Obama’s request to authorize a military strike against Syria, it is “neither his desire nor his intention” to carry out the attack regardless.

However, at the G20 summit in St. Petersburg, Obama was less clear when asked whether he would take military action without Congressional approval.

“I put this before Congress for a reason,” Obama told reporters. “I believe action is more effective and stronger if we are united. I’m not engaging in parlor games with respect to how Congress responds to their constituents’ concerns.”

Obama added that he would have already taken action without consulting Congress had there been a direct threat to the United States or its allies.

Secretary of State John Kerry has clearly suggested that the President WILL go ahead with military action regardless of the outcome of the Congressional vote, a move that could prompt a constitutional crisis.

The comments come at the same time as reports indicating that the chances of the House approving for military action in Syria are so bad that congressional aides are doubting whether a vote will even take place.

“I just don’t believe that if defeat is certain, the House leadership will want to see a president utterly humiliated on the House floor in a public vote,” one top aide to the Republican leadership told National Review. “The weakness it would demonstrate wouldn’t be good for the country.” the aide said.

The Senate narrowly passed a modified version of Obama’s resolution on Wednesday, and the full Senate is likely to begin voting next Wednesday. Both chambers must approve the measure for it to pass.

Meanwhile Obama has announced that he will make a plea to the American people for military action in a White House address on Tuesday.

 

Obama: Congress Is Supposed to Represent Me, Not the American People

Lawmakers know better than 99% of the voters, Obama implied.

Kit Daniels
Infowars.com
September 6, 2013

In a speech today at the G20 Summit in Russia, President Barack Obama stated that members of Congress should listen to their voters but ultimately should act on their own, against their constituency, in order to make a decision that is “right for America.”

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Video Blocked by Youtube   WHY???

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Segment begins at the 27:45 minute mark.

Obama made this revealing statement after a journalist asked, “One of your closest allies in the House said yesterday, ‘When you’ve got 97 percent of your constituents saying no, it’s kind of hard to say yes.’ Why should members of Congress go against the will of their constituents and support your decision on this?”

“Now, with respect to Congress and how they should respond to constituency concerns, you know, I do consider it part of my job to help make the case and to explain to the American people exactly why I think this is the right thing to do,” Obama said. “It’s conceivable that at the end of the day, I don’t persuade a majority of the American people that it’s the right thing to do and then each member of Congress is gonna have to decide, if I think it’s the right thing to do for America’s national security and the world’s national security, then how do I vote?”

“And you know what? That’s — that’s what you’re supposed to do as a member of Congress. Ultimately, you listen to your constituents, but you’ve also got to make some decisions about what you believe is right for America.”

In short, Obama will try to influence Americans into supporting his war, but failing that, Congress is supposed to just ignore the vast majority of voters against the war and approve military action in Syria.

As Obama implied, members of Congress should represent themselves rather than the voters who placed them in office, especially when Obama’s aims run contrary to the demands of the American people.

This is right in line with a senior State Department official’s earlier statement that “the president’s decision to take military action in Syria still stands, and will indeed be carried out, regardless of whether Congress votes next week to approve the use of such force.”

As we reported yesterday, Congress members across the nation are being overwhelmed by unprecedented opposition towards a war in Syria.

“I’m told the phone calls are 9 out of 10 against a strike in Syria, from my constituents in Kentucky,” said Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.)

Rep. Matt Salmon (R-Az.) told the National Review that out of the 500 voters who called his office recently, 498 of them adamantly wanted to stay out of Syria.

Anti-war sentiments are prevailing in both major parties.

“I can tell you 99 percent of the calls coming to my office are against it,” Maryland Democratic Rep. Elijah Cummings said to MSNBC.

It is interesting to note that in 2012, 76% of his district voted for Obama.

Other representatives have tweeted similar statements:

As we have exhaustively documented in the past, American troops may find themselves fighting alongside al-Qaeda if they are deployed to Syria.

“We should be focused on defending the United States of America,” Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) said recently. “That’s why young men and women sign up to join the military, not to, as you know, serve as Al Qaeda’s air force.”

 

Syria: Next Chapter of U.S. Shadow War in Middle East

For 12 years strong, US running “counterinsurgency air force” for allies

Julie Wilson
Infowars.com
September 6, 2013

While the world’s focus is centered on the G-20 Summit and Obama attempting to make his case to justify a war with Syria, the US military is still covertly fighting a 12-year old war in the Middle East and now parts of Africa.

According to the BBC, an estimated six more militants were killed overnight in Pakistan after two missiles were fired at a house in North Waziristan, near Afghanistan. While the strike managed to take out a senior commander of the Taliban-linked Haqqani militant network, reports also confirm an undisclosed number of civilian casualties.

Photo: Official US Navy Page via Flickr.

Photo: Official US Navy Page via Flickr.

The strike is the second this week in Pakistan, adding to the list of 322 drone strikes authorized by Obama.Statistics from the Bureau of Investigative Journalism reveal an estimated 2,513-3,595 were killed, including 407-926 civilians and 168-200 children from 2004-13.

Since the war began, following the aftermath of the September 11 attacks, the US has been utilizing the covert drone program in eight different countries.

These countries include:

• Afghanistan
• Algeria
• Iraq
• Iran
• Libya
• Somalia
• Pakistan
• Yemen

Syria may be added to the list next.

From 2002-13, nearly 60 drone strikes have been confirmed, killing an estimated 268-393 people, including 21-58 civilians and five children. Remember, these are the number of confirmed strikes and deaths, the death toll is projected to be much higher.

In Somalia, approximately ten drone strikes have been confirmed, killing an estimated 30 people. Covert operations have killed an estimated 7-14 people, including 7-42 civilians and 1-3 children.

Reviewing these numbers illustrates the US’s attitude towards murder and assassination. It highlights the absolute hypocrisy of the US wanting to initiate another war in another country on the basis of avenging the deaths of a few hundred Syrians killed via a chemical weapons attack.

Reports have continually pointed towards the Syrian rebels as the culprits for the chemical weapons attack in Syria on Aug. 21, but even if Assad had done this to his own people, how can the US justify punishing a leader who murders civilians when the US is responsible for the deaths of thousands of innocent Middle Eastern men, women and children?

The US covert drone program has managed to stay incredibly secretive, and only recently has the Obama administration come under criticism for the program, with the public and US officials calling more transparency and oversight.

Experts argue the reason the program has been kept secret is because it would be in violation of an executive order signed in 1976 by President Gerald R. Ford which banned “American intelligence forces from engaging in assassination,” reported the New Yorker.

Critics say the program has progressed beyond it’s original intention. The use of the unmanned drone program was initially intended to target an individual based on a specific set of intelligence based on his or her identity, and who posed an imminent threat to the US. Now suspects are targeted based on suspicious behavior or a series of actions that might be suspicious. Sometimes the identify of that individual is unknown.

While the drone program came to prominence under Bush, Obama has drastically expanded it. A US military attack on Syria would earn Obama the title of “war president,” according to a senior Russian lawmaker. It would make him a “second George W. Bush,” said a member of the Russian Parliament.

Obama’s drone program shows no evidence of slowing down, with strikes expanding into parts of Africa to reportedly target the al-Qaeda affiliated group al Shabaab. According to the Bureau for Investigative Journalism, US operations in Somalia remain “largely a mystery” with only two confirmed strikes in 2012.

“In Yemen and Somalia, there is debate about whether the militants targeted by the U.S. are in fact plotting against the U.S. or instead fighting against their own country,” reported ProPublica. Micah Zenko, a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, says the US is running “a counterinsurgency air force” for allied countries.

The US government is responsible for a massive death toll post 9/11, and instead of decelerating the wars, the Obama administrations intends to exacerbate more money and more military aid in an attempt to send Syrian leader al-Assad a message. An act that could push the planet into WW3.

Untitled

EGYPT EYES OBAMA’S BROTHER FOR TERROR LIST

EGYPT EYES OBAMA’S BROTHER FOR TERROR LIST

State investigators examining his role in Muslim Brotherhood

Published: 21 hours ago

author-image

JEROME R. CORSI

abongo-barack-obama

NEW YORK – President Obama’s Kenyan half-brother, Malik Obama, appears headed for the Egyptian terror watch list because of his Muslim Brotherhood ties.

Complaints have been filed with Egypt’s prosecutor-general calling for Malik to be put on Egypt’s terror watch list and brought to Egypt to be questioned by state criminal investigators for allegedly financing terrorism, according to former PLO member and native Arabic-speaker Walid Shoebat.

According to Egyptian newspaper and television reports, Malik Obama has become a target in an Egyptian government terrorist investigation because of his role as an owner and investment adviser for the Sudan-based Islamic Dawa Organization, or IDO, and the organization’s umbrella group, the Muslim Brotherhood.

Shoebat has provided the following translation of a report from an Egyptian media source, Youm 7, detailing criminal complaints filed against Malik Obama with the Egyptian attorney general and the Egyptian High Court, petitioning to put him on the terror watch list in Egypt:

Dr. Ahmed Nabil Ganzory, in his capacity as lawyer and agent for Dr. Sadik Rauf Obeid, and resident in the United States of America, filed a complaint with Egyptian Attorney General Hisham Barakat, against Malik Obama, accusing him of supporting terrorism in Egypt and for his involvement in managing the Islamic Dawa Organization (IDO). The complaint also asks to include Chancellor Tahani Al-Jebali to substantiate claims against Obama. …

Complaint No. 1761 for the year 2013 reported to the Attorney General asked the Egyptian High Court to consider the suspicious activity of a group called the Islamic Dawa Organization, which is owned and managed by Malik Obama. This group is now being investigated by international bodies and the attached evidence proves beyond a reasonable doubt that a close link exists between Malik Obama and some of the most notorious characters already wanted for their involvement in terrorism, as is consistent with the pictures and reports attached. …

The complaint also asks the court to bring in Malik Obama – a resident of the United States – to be questioned in regard to the terrorist groups in Egypt, whether by inciting or participating with or in any form of support punishable by law. It seeks permission to declare Obama a defendant in his right outside Egypt diplomatically, through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In the case of non-appearance and compliance for the investigation, the complainant requests monitoring [Malik Obama] by including his name on all Egyptian airports and ports, and take the necessary legal steps.”

[Editor’s note: bold text placed in translation by Walid Shoebat for emphasis]

WND has previously reported that Malik Obama is the executive secretary of the Dawa Organization, a group created by the government of Sudan, which is considered by the U.S. State Department to be a terrorist state.

New! “Impeachable Offenses” lays out the blueprint for impeaching Barack Obama for crimes against the United States. Order it now at WND’s Superstore!

Shoebat has further reported Malik Obama attended an IDO conference in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum, that was attended and supervised by Sudan President Omar Al-Bashir, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court on seven counts related to crimes against humanity.

An objectives of the IDO is to spread radical Wahhabist Islam across the African continent.

WND has reported Malik Obama was the best man at the wedding of Barack Obama to Michelle Robinson on Oct. 3, 1992. He has been photographed visiting President Obama in the White House.

Malik Obama, best man at the wedding of Barack H. Obama, Oct. 3, 1992

Tied to Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood

The criminal complaint referenced in the translation by Shoebat also calls for the inclusion of Tahani al-Gebali, former chancellor and a current advisor to the Constitutional Court of Egypt.

WND reported Aug. 20 that Gebali went public in Cairo with allegations that Malik Obama had links to the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt. Gebali charged that Malik Obama is “one of the architects” of the investments made by the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.

In her allegations against Malik Obama, Gebali also threatened to expose evidence of the Obama administration’s support of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.

“The Obama administration cannot stop us,” Gebali said, as reported by Egyptian television. “We need to open the files and begin court sessions. The Obama administration knows that they supported terrorism. We will open the files and begin court sessions.”

Gebali further charged the Obama administration’s enthusiastic support of the Morsi government brought into power after the “Arab Spring” continued even after the Morsi government welcomed Muslim Brotherhood leaders into the government.

Gebali suggested the Obama administration’s support of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt was a main reason President Obama has opposed the current military government ruling Egypt since Morsi was deposed.

Shortly after July 3, when Morsi was removed from office by a military coup that led to the establishment of the current Egyptian government, the Egyptian Independent newspaper reported in English on July 15 that Egypt’s prosecutor general, Hisham Barakat, moved to freeze the financial assets of several Islamic politicians, including Muslim Brotherhood Supreme Guide Mohamad Badie.

Last Sunday, Hisham Barakat moved to bring criminal charges against Morsi and 14 other members of the Muslim Brotherhood in a Cairo criminal court. Morsi was accused of “committing acts of violence and inciting killing and thuggery” in the deadly street clashes outside the presidential palace in December 2012 with opponents of his rule.

WND has reported Egyptian government prosecutors plan to introduce evidence Muslim Brotherhood leaders in Cairo received bribes paid in amounts as large as $850,000 a year each from the Obama administration in Washington via the U.S. Embassy in Cairo.

In September 2011, WND reported the Barack H. Obama Foundation, owned and operated by Malik Obama, apparently received notice of IRS approval in a document signed by Lois Lerner, the former head of the IRS tax-exempt division now on paid executive leave from her supervisory duties after she took the Fifth Amendment before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on May 22. She was to be questioned regarding her department’s use of inappropriate criteria to delay or otherwise deny tax-exempt status for tea party and “patriot” groups.

Malik Obama received the determination letter from Lerner one month after an application was submitted in May 2011. The IRS determination letter June 11, 2011, granted highly irregular retroactive tax-exempt approval only after the group came under fire for operating as a 501(c)3 foundation since 2008 without ever having applied to the IRS.

Abongo “Roy” Malik Obama displays a 1980s-era photograph of Barack Obama in Kenya

In May, WND reported that funds contributed in the U.S. to a 501(c)3 foundation run by Malik Obama have been diverted to support Malik’s multiple wives in Kenya, according to Shoebat.

In October 2012, WND reported a separate foundation, the Mama Sarah Obama Foundation, created on behalf of Obama’s step-grandmother in Kenya, has transferred funds, 90 percent of which are raised from U.S. individuals and corporations, to send Kenyan students to the top three most radical Wahhabist madrassas in Saudi Arabia.

In the first parliamentary elections held in Egypt after former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak was overthrown in February 2011, the Muslim Brotherhood’s newly formed Freedom and Justice Party won nearly half the seats in the People’s Assembly.

Read more at http://mobile.wnd.com/2013/09/egypt-eyes-obamas-brother-for-terror-list/#VAxJXHV8uYqldVfx.99

 

 

NOW EGYPT LOOKS TO ‘EXPOSE’ OBAMA

Strategy may include embarrassing White House

Published: 08/25/2013 at 6:12 PM

author-image

JEROME R. CORSI

obama-worried

The evidence is mounting that the military government currently ruling Egypt has decided to embarrass the Obama administration as part of a strategy to suppress Muslim Brotherhood activity in Egypt.

Last week, WND reported that Tehani al-Gebali, the vice president of the Supreme Constitutional Court of Egypt, gave a speech and participated in an interview broadcast on Egyptian television that identified Malik Obama, the Kenyan half-brother of President Obama, as “a major architect” managing investments for the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.

In the speech, Gebali said she would like “open files” to expose nations like the United States that are resisting the current military-controlled government of Egypt by continuing to support “terrorist” groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood.

“The Egyptian people are astounded,” wrote Coptic Egyptian author Michael Armanious in an article titled “Egyptians Bewildered Over Support for the Muslim Brotherhood,” published by the Gatestone Institute International Policy Council. “They simply do not understand the Obama Administration’s efforts to bring the Muslim Brotherhood back to power.”

Armanious puzzled over why the Obama administration supported the Muslim Brotherhood when the result of the “Arab Spring” was to oust Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and elect Muslim Brotherhood-backed Mohamed Morsi as president June 30, 2012.

“In an effort to make some sense of the Obama Administration’s policies, Amr Adeeb, a prominent Egyptian commentator, argues that the U.S. is helping the Muslim Brotherhood to achieve power, in order to turn Egypt into a magnet for jihadist fighters,” Armanious continued. “The goal, Adeeb states, is to turn Egypt into another Syria or Afghanistan and discredit Islamism as a viable political movement.”

Armanious argued the theory helped explain why the Obama administration has continued to side with the Muslim Brotherhood.

“To Westerners, this may seem like a bizarre conspiracy theory, but for Egyptians it helps explain why the U.S. government is supporting an organization that has openly declared jihad against the West, engaged in threats of war with Israel and Ethiopia, demolished dozens of ancient historic churches, set hospitals on fire, and murdered Christians in the streets. The Muslim Brotherhood has no respect for the rule of law, but the Obama Administration treats the Egyptian military that removed the group from power as a threat to democracy itself.”

Armanious charged that Morsi and his supporters utilized undemocratic measures to gain and hold onto power, citing as proof of his claim that on the day of Morsi’s election as president, the Muslim Brotherhood stopped thousands of Coptic Christians from voting.

Armanious wrote:

Morsi also straightforwardly stated that he was recreating an Islamic “Caliphate.” He pardoned and freed hard-line Islamists – including Anwar Sadat’s killers – and allowed them to have an Islamic political party, contrary to the constitution, which bans religious parties. When Morsi spoke to audiences, hard-line Islamists sat in the front row, demonstrating that these people were his political base.

To buttress the support of this base, Morsi released members of Gamaa al-Islamiyya, founded by the “Blind Sheikh,” Omar Abdel-Rahman, who attempted the first World Trade Center attack. This group, considered a terrorist organization by the United States, killed over 60 tourists in Luxor in 1997. That history did not stop Morsi from appointing one of its members governor of Luxor, over the objection of local residents who are dependent on tourism for their livelihood. Nor did it stop him from assigning another member of this group as Minister of Culture. With these decisions, Morsi delivered a final blow to Egypt’s tourism industry.

Concluding his article, Armonious noted many Egyptians are asking: “Why is the U.S. Administration siding with the forces of oppression in their country and assisting with its transformation into a failed state under the leadership of the Muslim Brotherhood?”

Egypt cracks down on Muslim Brotherhood

Last week in Cairo, the government arrested Muslim Brotherhood spokesman Ahmad Aref along with some 75 executive members of the group, according to Egypt’s interior ministry.

“Mohamed El-Beltagy, a Muslim Brotherhood leader, was targeted in several provinces, but security forces failed to arrest him,” said sources in Egypt’s judiciary, speaking to the Arabic-language newspaper Asharq Al-Awsat on the condition of anonymity.

Sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that the steps come within the framework of the security services’ efforts to pursue the Brotherhood’s executive leaders and organizational offices, as well members who had arrest warrants issued against them.

The English-language Daily News in Cairo independently reported last week that security forces in Egypt arrested a number of senior members of the Muslim Brotherhood in a campaign of arrests that followed the dispersal of sit-ins at Rabaa Al-Adaweya and Nehda Square.

The Daily Times further reported Muslim Brotherhood lawyer Ali Kamal accused supporters of the change of power that unseated Morsi as seeking to “settle accounts” by arresting the supreme guide of the group, Mohamed Badie, and other senior members.

“It is well-known that all the charges brought against the leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood and … the Freedom and Justice Party … are implausible fabricated charges with no legally acceptable evidence,” he said on the group’s website.

Prominent supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood Safwat Hegazy was arrested early Wednesday morning near Marsa Matrouh. The Ministry of Interior said it apprehended Hegazy, who had changed his appearance, as he attempted to cross into Libya through Egypt’s western border.

According to the Daily Times report, Safwat Hegazy was accused of inciting violence and killing.

The campaign the Egyptian government is waging against the Muslim Brotherhood appears to be effective.

Reuters reported that mass protests called by the Muslim Brotherhood for last Friday failed to materialize as the movement “reeled from a bloody army crackdown on followers of ousted President Mohamed Morsi.

Troops and police had taken what Reuters called “low-key security measures” before the “Friends of Martyrs” processions that the Muslim Brotherhood had planned to launch from 28 mosques in the capital after weekly prayers.

But midday prayers were canceled last Friday at some Cairo mosques. and there were few signs of major demonstrations unfolding in the city.

Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2013/08/now-egypt-looks-to-expose-obama/#MwH6T5zEc1jcJQmy.99

WHY HAS’NT THIS FOOL BEEN IMPEACHED LONG AGO

War, War, What is it Good For?

War, War, What is it Good For?

By Andrew P. Napolitano

September 5, 2013

 

President Obama’s request for express congressional authorization for a limited aerial invasion of Syria raises profound legal and constitutional questions. For starters, there is simply no legal basis in international law to support an American invasion of Syria. Yet, notwithstanding that, federal law permits the president to commit U.S. military forces anywhere he wants for up to 90 days, without express authorization from Congress. So, why did Obama ask for the authorization he surely knows he already has?

Since March 2011, Syria has been in the throes of a civil war. Those seeking to oust the government of President Bashar al-Assad are a mixture of his domestic political opponents, disgruntled former Syrian military officers and dangerous radical foreign Islamist fighters affiliated with al-Qaida. International organizations monitoring the war have put the dead from both sides at more than 100,000 persons.

Until last week, the U.S. had steadfastly stayed out of this war, as its outcome is unlikely to affect American national security. Though Assad is a former friend who once famously dined with then Sen. John Kerry, he is now a monster willing to go to extremes to stay in power. On the other hand, our allies in the region surely would prefer that the Syrian government not be run by or under the influence of al-Qaida, and federal law prohibits Americans and the U.S. government from aiding al-Qaida. Hence, our neutrality — until Obama made a thoughtless and bravado-driven comment during his re-election campaign in August 2012, and now fears that his bluff has been called.

In his comment, the president, sounding like an international policeman — a position he condemned when President George W. Bush sounded that way — declared that if the Syrian government used chemical weapons against its adversaries, the very use of which is prohibited by all civilized norms, America would revisit its neutrality. In reliance upon what he now claims is sound intelligence showing government use of chemical weapons on innocent Syrian civilians, Obama last week stated an intention to engage in a limited military invasion of Syria so as to weaken its resolve and ability to fight the rebels further.

Never mind that the photos shown by Obama’s folks of aid workers ministering to the supposed victims of government gassing show the workers without gas masks or gloves, and never mind that the Assad regime has permitted U.N. weapons inspectors unfettered access to its materiel, and never mind that the president wants to invade Syria before the weapons inspectors issue their report. The president wants us to believe that the Assad regime intentionally gassed a thousand Syrian innocents who were of no military value to the rebels or threat to the regime — and among whom were, according to former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., “hundreds of children.”

Even if all this took place as Obama claims, can he lawfully bomb Syria to punish its government for violating international norms or to deter it from doing so again? In a word: No.

International law recognizes only three lawful routes to the use of military force. It recognizes the right of every country to launch military force in order to prevent its own borders from being invaded or to subdue those who commenced an invasion. It also recognizes the ability of any U.N. member state to come to the aid of any other U.N. member state when one of them has been invaded. And treaties to which the U.S. and Syria are parties permit limited purpose invasions when approved by the U.N. None of these lawful scenarios applies to Syria.

Can Obama just launch an invasion of Syria even if it would be unlawful and even if Congress says no?

Because of the vicissitudes of history, the personalities of presidents and the myopic compromises of past Congresses, the area of presidential war-making has different legal and constitutional ramifications. Under the Constitution, only Congress can authorize the offensive use of military force. James Madison’s notes from the Constitutional Convention in 1787 make it obvious that the Framers were nearly unanimous in their resolve to keep the war-making power away from the president and repose it exclusively with Congress. They did this clearly and unambiguously in Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution.

Notwithstanding the precise language of the Constitution and the history of the nation’s birth, the War Powers Resolution (WPR), a federal statute enacted in 1973 over President Nixon’s veto, does permit the president on his own to use the military for offensive wars for a maximum of 90 days. Thus, under current federal law, Obama may lawfully bomb Syria even if Congress declines to authorize him to do so and even though such an act would violate international law.

But the WPR is profoundly unconstitutional because it cedes Congress’ constitutional war-making power to the president. The WPR was an ill-conceived political compromise effectuated by a Watergate-weakened president, congressional hawks who approved of Nixon’s unilateral invasion of Cambodia and sober congressional heads more faithful to the separation of powers.

Yet, the Supreme Court has ruled consistently that the transfer of constitutional powers among the branches of the federal government is unconstitutional, even if popular and consensual, unless brought about by an amendment to the Constitution. Thus, Congress can no more let the president start wars than the president can let Congress appoint federal judges, lest the Constitution have no meaning or force of law.

So why does Obama want Congress’ approval to do that which international law prohibits and federal law permits? Obama knows that war is the health of the state: It unites political adversaries around common patriotic-sounding goals and often generates support for those in harm’s way and resources for the government officials who sent them there.

But, will another war enhance our freedoms or our safety? Will it add to our debt? Will it trash the law? Can we bomb and kill for bragging rights?

The answers are obvious, and they don’t justify war.

Reprinted with the author’s permission.

Andrew P. Napolitano [send him mail], a former judge of the Superior Court of New Jersey, is the senior judicial analyst at Fox News Channel. Judge Napolitano has written seven books on the U.S. Constitution. The most recent is Theodore and Woodrow: How Two American Presidents Destroyed Constitutional Freedom. To find out more about Judge Napolitano and to read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit creators.com.
Copyright © 2013 Andrew P. Napolitano

Video: Syrian Rebel Admits Using Chemical Weapons

Video: Syrian Rebel Admits Using Chemical Weapons

“We’ll kill their women and children like Osama Bin Laden said”

Paul Joseph Watson
Infowars.com
September 5, 2013

A video has emerged of an opposition rebel militant in Syria apparently confessing to using chemical weapons in order to follow Osama Bin Laden’s mantra of killing women and children.

The individual in the clip, Nadeem Baloosh, is a member an insurgent group called Riyadh Al Abdeen, which is active in the Latakia area of Syria.

Baloosh speaks of “chemicals which produce lethal and deadly gases that I possess,” before going on to state, “We decided to harm them through their women and kids.”

Baloosh ponders if it is acceptable to harm women and children before quoting the Koran, “Fight them as they fight you. ” He goes on to quote Osama Bin Laden (whom other rebel groups have openly praised).

“We’ll kill their women and children like Sheikh Osama Bin Laden said – “until they cease killing our women and kids,” he states.

Baloosh goes on to talk about the Syrian Army approaching the area where his rebel group were located, before stating, “So we had the idea that this weapon was very powerful and effective to repel them, we announced if they approached one meter, everything is permitted.”

“We will strike them in their homes, we will turn their day into night and their night into day,” adds Baloosh.

The footage adds to the increasing weight of evidence that suggests US-backed rebels possess and have used chemical weapons on more than one occasion, although such reports have been habitually downplayed by the mainstream media.

Earlier today Russia announced that it had compiled a 100 page report proving opposition rebels “were behind a deadly sarin gas attack in an Aleppo suburb earlier this year.”

Carla Del Ponte, the leading member of the UN inquiry into the attack, which happened in March, told Swiss TV that there existed “strong, concrete suspicions but not yet incontrovertible proof” that rebels were responsible for the atrocity.

As we highlighted last week, Syrian rebels in the Damascus suburb of Ghouta admitted to a reporter that they were responsible for last month’s chemical weapons incident which western powers have blamed on Bashar Al-Assad’s forces, revealing that the casualties were the result of an accident caused by rebels mishandling chemical weapons provided to them by Saudi Arabia.

Despite the fact that the report was written by credible Associated Press and BBC correspondent Dale Gavlak, it has received virtually zero mainstream attention.

In addition, leaked phone conversations that emerged earlier this year between two members of the FreeSyrian Army contain details of a plan to carry out a chemical weapons attack capable of impacting an area the size of one kilometer. Footage was also leaked showing opposition militants testing what appeared to be nerve agents on laboratory rabbits.

There are also multiple other videos which apparently show US-backed rebels preparing and using chemical weapons.

 

 

Evidence: Syria gas attack work of U.S. allies syrian rebels

 

Evidence: Syria gas attack work of U.S. allies syrian rebels 2

 

Evidence: Syria gas attack work of U.S. allies syrian rebels 31

Who Benefits From A War Between The United States And Syria? and TEN REASONS WHY WE OPPOSE INTERVENTION

Who Benefits From A War Between The United States And Syria?

Submitted by Michael Snyder via The Economic Collapse blog,

Someone wants to get the United States into a war with Syria very, very badly.  Cui bono is an old Latin phrase that is still commonly used, and it roughly means "to whose benefit?"  The key to figuring out who is really behind the push for war is to look at who will benefit from that war.  If a full-blown war erupts between the United States and Syria, it will not be good for the United States, it will not be good for Israel, it will not be good for Syria, it will not be good for Iran and it will not be good for Hezbollah.  The party that stands to benefit the most is Saudi Arabia, and they won’t even be doing any of the fighting.

They have been pouring billions of dollars into the conflict in Syria, but so far they have not been successful in their attempts to overthrow the Assad regime.  Now the Saudis are trying to play their trump card – the U.S. military.  If the Saudis are successful, they will get to pit the two greatest long-term strategic enemies of Sunni Islam against each other – the U.S. and Israel on one side and Shia Islam on the other.  In such a scenario, the more damage that both sides do to each other the happier the Sunnis will be.

There would be other winners from a U.S. war with Syria as well.  For example, it is well-known that Qatar wants to run a natural gas pipeline out of the Persian Gulf, through Syria and into Europe.  That is why Qatar has also been pouring billions of dollars into the civil war in Syria.

So if it is really Saudi Arabia and Qatar that want to overthrow the Assad regime, why does the United States have to do the fighting?

Someone should ask Barack Obama why it is necessary for the U.S. military to do the dirty work of his Sunni Muslim friends.

Obama is promising that the upcoming attack will only be a "limited military strike" and that we will not be getting into a full-blown war with Syria.

The only way that will work is if Syria, Hezbollah and Iran all sit on their hands and do nothing to respond to the upcoming U.S. attack.

Could that happen?

Maybe.

Let’s hope so.

But if there is a response, and a U.S. naval vessel gets hit, or American blood is spilled, or rockets start raining down on Tel Aviv, the U.S. will then be engaged in a full-blown war.

That is about the last thing that we need right now.

The vast majority of Americans do not want to get embroiled in another war in the Middle East, and even a lot of top military officials are expressing "serious reservations" about attacking Syria according to the Washington Post

The Obama administration’s plan to launch a military strike against Syria is being received with serious reservations by many in the U.S. military, which is coping with the scars of two lengthy wars and a rapidly contracting budget, according to current and former officers.

Having assumed for months that the United States was unlikely to intervene militarily in Syria, the Defense Department has been thrust onto a war footing that has made many in the armed services uneasy, according to interviews with more than a dozen military officers ranging from captains to a four-star general.

For the United States, there really is no good outcome in Syria.

If we attack and Assad stays in power, that is a bad outcome for the United States.

If we help overthrow the Assad regime, the rebels take control.  But they would be even worse than Assad.  They have pledged loyalty to al-Qaeda, and they are rabidly anti-American, rabidly anti-Israel and rabidly anti-western.

So why in the world should the United States get involved?

This war would not be good for Israel either.  I have seen a number of supposedly pro-Israel websites out there getting very excited about the prospect of war with Syria, but that is a hugemistake.

Syria has already threatened to attack Israeli cities if the U.S. attacks Syria.  If Syrian missiles start landing in the heart of Tel Aviv, Israel will respond.

And if any of those missiles have unconventional warheads, Israel will respond by absolutely destroying Damascus.

And of course a missile exchange between Syria and Israel will almost certainly draw Hezbollah into the conflict.  And right now Hezbollah has 70,000 rockets aimed at Israel.

If Hezbollah starts launching those rockets, thousands upon thousands of innocent Jewish citizens will be killed.

So all of those "pro-Israel" websites out there that are getting excited about war with Syria should think twice.  If you really are "pro-Israel", you should not want this war.  It would not be good for Israel.

If you want to stand with Israel, then stand for peace.  This war would not achieve any positive outcomes for Israel.  Even if Assad is overthrown, the rebel government that would replace him would be even more anti-Israel than Assad was.

War is hell.  Ask anyone that has been in the middle of one.  Why would anyone want to see American blood spilled, Israeli blood spilled or Syrian blood spilled?

If the Saudis want this war so badly, they should go and fight it.  Everyone knows that the Saudis have been bankrolling the rebels.  At this point, even CNN is openly admitting this

It is an open secret that Saudi Arabia is using Jordan to smuggle weapons into Syria for the rebels. Jordan says it is doing all it can to prevent that and does not want to inflame the situation in Syria.

And Assad certainly knows who is behind the civil war in his country.  The following is an excerpt from a recent interview with Assad

Of course it is well known that countries, such as Saudi Arabia, who hold the purse strings can shape and manipulate them to suit their own interests.

Ideologically, these countries mobilize them through direct or indirect means as extremist tools. If they declare that Muslims must pursue Jihad in Syria, thousands of fighters will respond.

Financially, those who finance and arm such groups can instruct them to carry out acts of terrorism and spread anarchy. The influence over them is synergized when a country such as Saudi Arabia directs them through both the Wahhabi ideology and their financial means.

And shortly after the British Parliament voted against military intervention in Syria, Saudi Arabia raised their level of "defense readiness" from "five" to "two" in a clear sign that they fully expect a war to happen

Saudi Arabia, a supporter of rebels fighting to topple President Bashar al-Assad, has raised its level of military alertness in anticipation of a possible Western strike in Syria, sources familiar with the matter said on Friday.

The United States has been calling for punitive action against Assad’s government for a suspected poison gas attack on a Damascus suburb on August 21 that killed hundreds of people.

Saudi Arabia’s defense readiness has been raised to "two" from "five", a Saudi military source who declined to be named told Reuters. "One" is the highest level of alert.

And guess who has been supplying the rebels in Syria with chemical weapons?

According to Associated Press correspondent Dale Gavlak, it has been the Saudis

Syrian rebels in the Damascus suburb of Ghouta have admitted to Associated Press correspondent Dale Gavlak that they were responsible for last week’s chemical weapons incident which western powers have blamed on Bashar Al-Assad’s forces, revealing that the casualties were the result of an accident caused by rebels mishandling chemical weapons provided to them by Saudi Arabia.

“From numerous interviews with doctors, Ghouta residents, rebel fighters and their families….many believe that certain rebels received chemical weapons via the Saudi intelligence chief, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, and were responsible for carrying out the (deadly) gas attack,” writes Gavlak.

And this is someone that isn’t just fresh out of journalism school.  As Paul Joseph Watson noted, "Dale Gavlak’s credibility is very impressive. He has been a Middle East correspondent for the Associated Press for two decades and has also worked for National Public Radio (NPR) and written articles for BBC News."

The Voice of Russia has also been reporting on Gavlak’s bombshell findings…

The rebels noted it was a result of an accident caused by rebels mishandling chemical weapons provided to them.

“My son came to me two weeks ago asking what I thought the weapons were that he had been asked to carry,” said Abu Abdel-Moneim, the father of a rebel fighting to unseat Assad, who lives in Ghouta.

As Gavlak reports, Abdel-Moneim said his son and 12 other rebels died in a weapons storage tunnel. The father stated the weapons were provided to rebel forces by a Saudi militant, known as Abu Ayesha, describing them as having a “tube-like structure” while others were like a “huge gas bottle.”

“They didn’t tell us what these arms were or how to use them,” complained a female fighter named ‘K’. “We didn’t know they were chemical weapons. We never imagined they were chemical weapons.”

“When Saudi Prince Bandar gives such weapons to people, he must give them to those who know how to handle and use them,” she warned. She, like other Syrians, do not want to use their full names for fear of retribution.

Gavlak also refers to an article in the UK’s Daily Telegraph about secret Russian-Saudi talks stating that Prince Bandar threatened Russian President Vladimir Putin with terror attacks at next year’s Winter Olympics in Sochi if Russia doesn’t agree to change its stance on Syria.

“Prince Bandar pledged to safeguard Russia’s naval base in Syria if the Assad regime is toppled, but he also hinted at Chechen terrorist attacks on Russia’s Winter Olympics in Sochi if there is no accord,” the article stated.

“I can give you a guarantee to protect the Winter Olympics next year. The Chechen groups that threaten the security of the games are controlled by us,” Saudi Prince allegedly told Vladimir Putin.

Yes, the Saudis were so desperate to get the Russians to stand down and allow an attack on Syria that they actually threatened them.  Zero Hedge published some additional details on the meeting between Saudi intelligence chief Prince Bandar bin Sultan and Russian President Vladimir Putin…

Bandar told Putin, “There are many common values and goals that bring us together, most notably the fight against terrorism and extremism all over the world. Russia, the US, the EU and the Saudis agree on promoting and consolidating international peace and security. The terrorist threat is growing in light of the phenomena spawned by the Arab Spring. We have lost some regimes. And what we got in return were terrorist experiences, as evidenced by the experience of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and the extremist groups in Libya. … As an example, I can give you a guarantee to protect the Winter Olympics in the city of Sochi on the Black Sea next year. The Chechen groups that threaten the security of the games are controlled by us, and they will not move in the Syrian territory’s direction without coordinating with us. These groups do not scare us. We use them in the face of the Syrian regime but they will have no role or influence in Syria’s political future.”

It is good of the Saudis to admit they control a terrorist organization that "threatens the security" of the Sochi 2014 Olympic games, and that house of Saud uses "in the face of the Syrian regime." Perhaps the next time there is a bombing in Boston by some Chechen-related terrorists, someone can inquire Saudi Arabia what, if anything, they knew about that.

But the piece de resistance is what happened at the end of the dialogue between the two leaders. It was, in not so many words, a threat by Saudi Arabia aimed squarely at Russia:

As soon as Putin finished his speech, Prince Bandar warned that in light of the course of the talks, things were likely to intensify, especially in the Syrian arena, although he appreciated the Russians’ understanding of Saudi Arabia’s position on Egypt and their readiness to support the Egyptian army despite their fears for Egypt’s future.

The head of the Saudi intelligence services said that the dispute over the approach to the Syrian issue leads to the conclusion that “there is no escape from the military option, because it is the only currently available choice given that the political settlement ended in stalemate. We believe that the Geneva II Conference will be very difficult in light of this raging situation.”

At the end of the meeting, the Russian and Saudi sides agreed to continue talks, provided that the current meeting remained under wraps. This was before one of the two sides leaked it via the Russian press.

Are you starting to get the picture?

The Saudis are absolutely determined to make this war happen, and they expect us to do the fighting.

And Barack Obama plans to go ahead and attack Syria without the support of the American people or the approval of Congress.

According to a new NBC News poll that was just released, nearly 80 percent of all Americans want Congress to approve a strike on Syria before it happens.

And according to Politico, more than 150 members of Congress have already signed letters demanding that Obama get approval from them before attacking Syria…

Already Thursday, more than 150 members of Congress have signaled their opposition to airstrikes on Syria without a congressional vote. House members circulated two separate letters circulated that were sent to the White House demanding a congressional role before military action takes place. One, authored by Rep. Scott Rigell (R-Va.), has more than 150 signatures from Democrats and Republicans. Another, started by Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.), is signed by 53 Democrats, though many of them also signed Rigell’s letter.

However, is is clear that he is absolutely determined to attack Syria, and he is not going to let the U.S. Congress – even if they vote against it – or the American people stop him.

Let’s just hope that he doesn’t start World War III in the process.

TEN REASONS WHY WE OPPOSE INTERVENTION 1

TEN REASONS WHY WE OPPOSE INTERVENTION

Syria (1)

Canada’s government rallies behind Washington’s war on Syria BUT NOT THE CANADIAN PEOPLE

Canada’s government rallies behind Washington’s war on Syria

By Keith Jones
5 September 2013

http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2013/09/05/cana-s05.html

Canada’s Conservative government has repeatedly voiced support for a US-led war on Syria. It has endorsed Washington’s lies about having incontrovertible proof that the Assad regime mounted a chemical weapons attack last month and it has pledged Canada’s support for the US waging war on Syria in defiance of international law.

Speaking to reporters August 28, Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird said “consequences” for the Syrian regime should not be blocked or impeded by the lack of United Nations’ Security Council authorization. Canada was “of one mind” with the US, Britain, and France and “will,” Baird vowed, “continue towork with them in lock-step.”

The next day, Prime Minister Stephen Harper declared himself a “reluctant convert” to “Western military action regarding the Syrian situation.” As Harper went on to explain, his reluctance was not due to any qualms about the US unilaterally attacking countries and carrying out “regime change.” Rather it arose from concerns about the potential danger to imperialist interests if the Syrian state were to fracture along ethnic-religious lines. “We have been, and remain, concerned,” said Harper, that “this conflict … is overwhelmingly sectarian in nature and does not have at present any ideal or obvious outcomes.”

That said, Harper emphasized his support for the US raining missiles and bombs on a poor, former colonial country. “We do support,” declared Canada’s prime minister, “our allies who are contemplating forceful action.”

Under conditions where there is massive popular opposition within the US and around the world to the impending US attack on Syria, Canada’s support for Washington’s war drive takes on added importance.

Last Friday, the day after the British parliament rejected a Conservative-Liberal coalition government motion authorizing Britain to join the US in attacking Syria, Baird rushed to second US Secretary of State John Kerry’s concocted “case” against Syria. Endorsing Washington’s attempts to bamboozle the public and run roughshod over the UN inspection process—in a reprise of the campaign of lies mounted by the administration of George W. Bush prior to the US’s illegal 2003 invasion of Iraq—Baird said, “The Obama administration has shown great resolve and proper due diligence in the past week, and we fully support its efforts going forward.”

In their remarks of last week, Harper and Baird indicated that the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) will not participate in the campaign of devastating air strikes the Obama administration has publicly vowed to inflict on Syria. In announcing his government’s support for US military action, Harper said, “at the present time, we have no plans of our own to have a Canadian military mission.” Baird, in a television interview the previous day, had implied Canada would, in any event, have little to contribute to the US attack, since it would likely begin with “cruise missiles or armed drones, neither of which Canada has.”

What Harper and Baird would not, nor could not, admit is that there is widespread public opposition to Canada participating in another imperialist war.

No one should presume, however, that this opposition and Harper’s statement mean that Canada’s role in the US war on Syria will be limited to political-diplomatic support.

Obama, Kerry and other US government spokesman have spoken of a “limited” campaign of air strikes. But they have also pledged to significantly “downgrade” Syria’s military capabilities and “upgrade” those of the Islamacist-dominated anti-Assad “rebels.” The US Congressional motion drafted at the White House’s behest would authorize military action for up to ninety days.

In other words, Washington is pursuing its oft-stated goal of toppling the Assad regime, but now through direct US military intervention. This escalation threatens to unleash a wider regional war, including potentially involving Iran—Syria’s principal ally and the target of a relentless US-led destabilization campaign, including punishing economic sanctions—and even Russia.

As the war on Syria expands, Washington can be expected to press Canada to deploy CAF ships and planes to the war theater and large sections of the Canadian ruling class will demand such a deployment so as to uphold the partnership with US imperialism through which it has asserted its own predatory interests on the world stage for the past seven decades.

The Harper government—which boasts about the depth of its support for Israel—has, it must be noted, repeatedly signaled that Canada would participate in any attack on Iran.

Moreover, the CAF has long been involved in planning for possible military intervention against Syria. Peter MacKay, who was Canada’s Defence Minister until a cabinet shuffle this past July, repeatedly let it be known that the CAF, in conjunction with Canada’s allies, was drafting plans to intervene in Syria.

Last week, General Tom Lawson, Canada’s Chief of the Defence Staff, was in Amman, Jordan for a three-day meeting with the Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, Martin Dempsey, as well as generals from eight other countries: the US’s most important NATO allies—Britain, France, Germany and Italy—and four counties that have been supporting and arming the US-backed Syrian rebels—Turkey (also a NATO member), Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Jordan.

Canada’s Department of Defence has claimed that the meeting was long-scheduled and had nothing to do with the US preparations for imminent military action against Syria. Dempsey’s participation in the meeting alone makes this claim implausible, to say the least.

As part of its preparations for possible direct military intervention in Syria, Canada has also developed extensive military ties with Jordan, long one of the US’s most dependable client states in the Middle East, including signing a “defence co-operation memorandum” in the spring of 2012.

Canada’s Liberal Party, until recently the Canadian elite’s preferred party of government, is strongly supporting the US plans to attack Syria. Speaking last week, Liberal Foreign Affairs critic Marc Garneau said the Conservative government was right to pledge support for US military action against Syria even if taken without UN sanction.

Earlier, former Liberal Prime Minister Paul Martin, former Foreign Minister Lloyd Axworthy, and former Cabinet Minister and UN Ambassador Allan Rock had all asserted the right of Western countries to invade states and overthrow governments in the name of averting humanitarian disasters. All three boasted about the role Canada has played in developing a new political cover for imperialist intervention by promoting the so-called “responsibility to protect”—the ruse used by the US, France, Britain, and Canada to provide a rationale for the 2011 NATO attack on Libya, an attack that continued until Gaddafi was overthrown .

The Official Opposition New Democratic Party has, for its part, lent its full support to the US-orchestrated campaign to justify an attack on Syria in the name of policing the ban on the use of chemical weapons. Its only proviso has been that the UN inspectors should be allowed to file their report before any attack is launched. Canada’s social-democrats have repeatedly facilitated Canada’s participation in imperialist wars, including supporting NATO’s 1999 war on Yugoslavia, the US invasion and occupation of Afghanistan and the 2011 NATO war on Libya.

http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2013/09/05/cana-s05.html

*********************

Now from the People Of Canada

The awake people of Canada are Just as appalled as the rest of the world people at AMERICAN ADMINISTRATION LIES and DECEPTIONS once again Now its of Chemical weapons being used by Al Assad’s government against the Free Syrian Rebels (the real guilty party) as a reason to Obliterate the Country With Bombs as was done in Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan etc.etc.etc..We all Remember the WMDs lie for Iraq’s Obliteration with bombs and then Bush latter making a comedy Skit joke out of the fact that there were no WMDs to start of with ha ha ha 

What can you do?
» Send an e-mail to your MP.
Just cut and paste the “dont attack SYRIA” pic statement above and send to your Member of Parliament
A full list of MP’s e-mail addresses is
here.
» Sign the online petition
here.

– See more at: http://www.acp-cpa.ca/en/No-NATO-Intervention-in-Syria.html#sthash.SMMwjQiG.dpuf

Protests across Canada against war in Syria

REBEL YOUTH FRIDAY, AUGUST 30, 2013

Call for action
Many CPA member groups, as well as coalitions in other countries including the US, have devised emergency response plans in the event of an attack on Syria. These plans are often for a demonstration the day of, or one day following, such an attack. The CPA calls upon peace and social justice groups to devise such plans, whether or not an attack immediately involves Canada, and to continue to pressure the Government of Canada and NATO to keep their hands off Syria.
Please email details about local emergency actions to cpa@web.ca. All actions will be posted on http://www.acp-cpa.ca.


Events Listings
» Calgary
Saturday August 31st 12pm at 615 Macleod Trail SE (outside the U.S consolate building),Calgary
Facebook link
» Edmonton
Edmonton: No to War on Syria! No to Western Military Intervention!
Information Picket
Saturday August 31, 4:00 p.m.
Meet at 103 Street and Whyte (82) Avenue, NE Corner
» Hamilton
Picket the Federal Building, 55 Bay Street North on Monday (Labour Day), September 2, from 10:30 am until noon and leaflet the annual Labour Day parade as it passes by.
For more information see: Hamilton Coalition to Stop the War
» Montreal
Saturday, Aug. 31 from 12:00 to 2:00 pm, at Place du Canada, Montreal, QC.
Facebook link
» Niagara Falls
NO Military intervention in SYRIA! Rally at Minister of Defence Office (Niagara Falls)
Friday – 2:00pm until 4:00pm
Rob Nicholson’s Office, 2895 St. Paul Avenue, Niagara Falls
Facebook link
Join the LIVE FREE COLLECTIVE and Niagara Coalition for Peace on Friday, August 30th from 2pm-4pm for a rally at Canadian Minister of Defence Rob Nicholson’s office to show your opposition to US military intervention in Syria on false humanitarian grounds.
» Ottawa
RALLY AGAINST WAR ON SYRIA
Saturday, August 31, 5 PM
Human Rights Monument (Elgin at Lisgar)
March to the U.S. Embassy
Oppose the imminent US-led attack on Syria!
We must state in the strongest terms: HANDS OFF SYRIA!
Please join us with your banners and signs.
Organized by Syria Solidarity, Nowar-Paix, and the Ottawa Peace Assembly
For more information: nowar.paix at gmail.com
» Regina
Saturday, August 31, 2013
2:00am in CST
regina city hall to plaza and park
Facebook link a rally to say no to the US and other countries who want to occupy and begin bombing the country and citizens of Syria.
» Toronto
Don’t attack Syria. Say no to war.
Saturday, August 31
2:00 pm to 4:00 pm
United States Consulate
360 University Avenue
Facebook link
Organized by the Toronto Coalition to Stop the War
Endorsed by the Canadian Arab Federation and Palestine House
» Vancouver
Emergency rally against an US-led attack on Syria
Saturday, August 31
2pm, Vancouver Art Gallery (Robson & Hornby)
Organized by StopWar.
Contact: stopwar@resist.ca
Facebook link
StopWar Vancouver has endorsed this call by the Canadian Peace Alliance for emergency actions. Protests will be taking place in cities and towns across Canada in the coming days.
» Victoria
The Victoria Peace Coalition is organizing a rally at the Cenotaph at the Legislative Buildings in conjunction with CAIA who already had a silent vigil planned for that date and time — Saturday August 31. 12 noon.
» Windsor
Windsor Says: Hands Off Syria!
Anti-War Picket
Saturday August 31
11 am
Corner of Ottawa St. and Walker Road, close to Market Square
Bring signs and flags. This will be a speak out and a chance for us to involve our community in opposing wars of aggression. We will also flyer people going into the Windsor Market to spread the word.
Labour Day Parade
Monday September 2
Meet at 9:15 am behind the Windsor Peace Coalition Banner
CAW 200/444 Hall, 1855 Turner Road, Windsor
Parade leaves 10 am – heading to Fogolar Furlan
Join the Anti-War Contingent in the Parade
Bring signs and flags
Windsor Peace Coalition windsorpeace@hotmail.com

– See more at: http://www.acp-cpa.ca/en/No-NATO-Intervention-in-Syria.html#sthash.LvAknrBj.dpuf

 

Syria: Hundreds in Toronto protest impending U.S-led war

Many protesters at U.S. consulate express support for Syrian president Bashar Assad.

A young girl wears a T-shirt with a picture of Bashar Assad and the words " We Love You" below at a protest against U.S. involvement in Syria. They rallied Saturday at the U.S. consulate on University Ave.

RENE JOHNSTON / TORONTO STAR

A young girl wears a T-shirt with a picture of Bashar Assad and the words " We Love You" below at a protest against U.S. involvement in Syria. They rallied Saturday at the U.S. consulate on University Ave.

By: Alex Nino Gheciu News reporter, Published on Sat Aug 31 2013

Reem Sinno and her family were appalled by President Barack Obama’s announcement Saturday that he intended — pending congressional approval — to launch a military attack against the Syrian regime.

So the Syrian-Canadians joined more than 200 people at the U.S. consulate in Toronto to loudly protest the impending attack.

“I’m against the USA interfering in our issues,” said Sinno, holding a Syrian flag. “No one in the whole world likes it when others interfere in your life. They are calling the Assad regime a dictatorship. But Obama is more of a dictator than him.”

Protesters across the globe took to the streets to condemn Obama’s statement urging the U.S. to take action against Syrian president Bashar Assad’s regime. Obama said he wanted to hold the regime accountable for allegedly launching a chemical attack that killed more than 1,400 people on Aug. 21.

Many of the protesters in Toronto expressed support for Assad, some even wearing T-shirts displaying the dictator’s face and the words “We Love You” below. Chants of “Syria is not the enemy, war is not the answer” and “hands off Syria” were belted out on megaphones.

“We’ve seen in recent days that it’s been a lot more difficult for Obama to mobilize the international community and public opinion to support this war,” said James Clark, an organizer with Toronto Coalition to Stop the War, which arranged the protest. “It’s because Americans and the international public are tired of these wars that have all been based on lies. The memories of the Iraq war are still fresh in their minds.”

Clark said military action could exacerbate Syria’s civil war and result in even more causalities.

“We don’t think the so-called humanitarian interventions are humanitarian at all,” he said. “Up to 100,000 people have been killed and many more have been displaced in the civil war. Militarizing that conflict or bombing innocent civilians is not going to improve the situation.”

Many protesters called for an end to foreign interference in Syria, arguing the country should be allowed to determine its own destiny on its own terms.

But some in the crowd believed Assad’s regime must be overthrown.

“You can’t have a solution without Assad being thrown out,” said Naeim Asgary, 24. “He might not have used chemical weapons, but he’s killed at least 10,000 to 20,000 innocent people. I’m from Iran; I know what the Syrian army is up to.”

Nevertheless, the Sinno family and many others were resolute in their support for Assad.

“Syria’s president is the only president in the Arab world that has not been loyal to USA or Israel,” said 12-year-old Ali Mohammed, Reem’s son. “I was born in Palestine. I have to support Syria’s president for supporting us.”

 

There is still time to stop a war on Syria
September 3, 2013
The ‘coalition of the willing’ was dealt a series of setbacks last week. In the UK, the government of David Cameron was rebuffed by the massive response from the Stop the War Coalition and by the British parliament, which voted against giving authorization for war. In the US, President Barack Obama has been trying to build a case for war, but is now waiting for congressional approval – a situation that temporarily stays his hand. Obama’s hesitation is a sign of real political weakness, and opens the door for the anti-war movement to keep up the pressure.
But time is running out. The US Congress will meet next Monday to decide a course of action.
There is a possibility that we can stop this war, but only with a huge global response. Already, there are calls for demonstrations around the world on Saturday, September 7. Following a solid anti-war response in Canada last weekend – which saw more than a dozen protests across the country – the Canadian Peace Alliance is calling on members and supporters to continue the momentum by organizing more demonstrations next weekend: on September 7, 8 and 9.
Although Canada has said that it doesn’t intend to send military support for an attack, it has provided the US government with useful political support. We must pressure the Canadian government to reverse that support, while we ramp-up our opposition to the US war drive.
The people of Syria have already suffered two years of a bloody civil war, with tens of thousands killed and hundreds of thousands of internally displaced or made refugees. A Western military attack would only make this situation worse. Just as we saw in the lead-up to the war on Iraq, John Kerry and other war proponents are willfully misrepresenting intelligence regarding chemical weapons in their rush to war.
We need to show our solidarity with the people of Syria and stop the US from undertaking unilateral military action under the guise of humanitarian intervention. The lives of tens of thousands more Syrians are at stake.

 

Don’t attack Syria
August 27, 2013
The Canadian Peace Alliance (CPA) is calling on all its members and supporters to oppose an impending US-led attack on Syria.
Once again, a report about the use of Weapons of Mass Destruction is being used to justify an intervention. We are always opposed to the use of any weapons on civilians, but as was the case with the last reports of an alleged attack, there is no conclusive proof that the attack came from the Syrian government.
Undaunted by the lack of evidence, US Secretary of State John Kerry has nevertheless declared that the US and its NATO allies will strike Syria. Any intervention by an new "coalition of the willing" will be against international law and must be opposed.
Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird has said that Canada will be in "lock-step" with its NATO allies. Canadian officials are currently meeting with counterparts from France, the UK and the US to devise strategies for an intervention.
Regardless of what one thinks of either the Syrian government or of the opposition forces, we know from recent experience that:
– NATO and its allies have and will continue to lie about the use of Weapons of Mass Destruction to justify "humanitarian" intervention.
– NATO-led attacks, justified as a "responsibility to protect" (R2P) civilians, have resulted in tens of thousands of civilian deaths. The death toll from military attacks in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya can be counted in the hundreds of thousands.
– The geopolitical calculations of the NATO powers, and not the interests of ordinary people, are always the main considerations for any intervention.
During the Vietnam War, US officials described a situation where it became necessary to "destroy the village in order to save it." As with all the recent evocations of R2P, it appears that the goal of NATO is to bomb civilians in order to save them. We must, therefore, stand in opposition to the actions of the aggressor states in NATO and call on the government of Canada to keep its hands off Syria.
Call for action
Many CPA member groups, as well as coalitions in other countries including the US, have devised emergency response plans in the event of an attack on Syria. These plans are often for a demonstration the day of, or one day following, such an attack. The CPA calls upon peace and social justice groups to devise such plans, whether or not an attack immediately involves Canada, and to continue to pressure the Government of Canada and NATO to keep their hands off Syria.
Please email details about local emergency actions to cpa@web.ca. All actions will be posted on http://www.acp-cpa.ca.

– See more at: http://www.acp-cpa.ca/en/No-NATO-Intervention-in-Syria.html#sthash.SMMwjQiG.dpuf

The Insane March Toward WWIII September 4th 2013

Ted Cruz: U.S. not ‘Al Qaeda’s air force’

By TAL KOPAN and BURGESS EVERETT  9/4/13 12:25 PM EDT

Sen. Ted Cruz called President Barack Obama’s efforts to authorize military intervention in Syria a public relations move, saying the U.S. military shouldn’t be “Al Qaeda’s air force.”

The Texas Republican said Tuesday on TheBlaze that while he’s glad the president listened to calls from him and others to bring the issue to Congress, America shouldn’t get involved and risk helping terrorists in the rebel forces.

“We certainly don’t have a dog in the fight,” Cruz said, calling it a civil war in Syria. “We should be focused on defending the United States of America. That’s why young men and women sign up to join the military, not to, as you know, serve as Al Qaeda’s air force.”

(PHOTOS: Senate hearing on Syria)

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) told reporters that Cruz sounded “totally uninformed” in his comments and that there is “overwhelming” evidence that the Free Syrian Army is still the dominant opposition force on the battlefield, not terrorists. McCain met with the army’s leader, Gen. Salim Idriss, in June.

“This is based on this assumption that they’re all extremists,” McCain said. “That’s just false, totally false. That’s someone that’s totally uninformed.”

Instead of being focused on securing chemical weapons in Syria, Cruz said, the president is too focused on “international norms” and his own public image.

(PHOTOS: Key quotes from Ted Cruz)

“It appears what the president is pressing for is essentially protecting his public relations because he drew a red line, and, essentially, the bluff was called,” Cruz said.

Cruz said of nine major groups of rebels fighting in Syria, at least seven had ties to Al Qaeda, and a strategy from Obama that would arm those groups “makes no sense whatsoever.”

“I’ll give you one of the simplest principles of foreign policy that we ought to be following: Don’t give weapons to people who hate you. Don’t give weapons to people who want to kill you,” Cruz said.

Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2013/09/ted-cruz-syria-update-96244.html#ixzz2dwggxTPc

 

Putin ‘does not rule out’ approving Syria strike with evidence Assad used poison gas

Russian President Vladimir Putin gives an interview at the Novo-Ogaryovo state residence outside Moscow September 3, 2013. REUTERS-Alexei Druzhinin-RIA Novosti-Kremlin

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during an interview at the Novo-Ogaryovo state residence outside Moscow September 3, 2013. REUTERS-Alexei Druzhinin-RIA Novosti-Kremlin

Russian President Vladimir Putin gives an interview at the Novo-Ogaryovo state residence outside Moscow September 3, 2013. REUTERS-Alexei Druzhinin-RIA Novosti-Kremlin

By Thomas Grove

MOSCOW | Wed Sep 4, 2013 4:48am EDT

(Reuters) – Russian President Vladimir Putin saidRussia did not rule out approving a military operation in Syria if clear evidence showed Damascus had carried out chemical weapons attacks, but said any attack would be illegal without U.N. support.

In an interview with AP and Russia’s First Channel, released the day before a G20 leaders’ meeting in St Petersburg, Putin said he expected to hold talks with the U.S. President Barack Obama on the summit sidelines, saying there was much to discuss.

Ties between the United States and Russia have fallen to one of their lowest points since the end of the Cold War over numerous issues including violence in Syria, where Russia has been President Bashar al-Assad’s most powerful protector.

Putin’s comments appeared intended to show readiness to remain constructive in U.S.-Russia ties, despite Obama’s decision to pull out of a bilateral summit between the leaders.

Obama comes to St Petersburg having secured support from key figures in the U.S. Congress for his call for limited U.S. strikes on Syria.

When asked whether Russia would agree to military action if Damascus were proven to have carried out a chemical weapons attack, Putin answered: "I do not rule it out."

However, he also made clear that Russia is not yet prepared to accept U.S. and European assertions that Assad’s forces were behind an August 21 chemical weapons attack that Washington says killed more than 1,400 people.

"We have no data that those chemical substances – it is not yet clear whether it was chemical weapons or simply some harmful chemical substances – were used precisely by the official government army."

Putin said no strikes on Syria could be legal without approval by the United Nations Security Council, where Moscow has a veto that it has repeatedly used to protect Assad.

"According to current international law, only the United Nations Security Council can sanction the use of force against a sovereign state. Any other approaches, means, to justify the use of force against an independent and sovereign state, are inadmissible," he said, adding it would amount to aggression.

The United States and France, its main ally on Syria, say they are prepared to launch strikes without a U.N. Security Council resolution because they believe Moscow would veto any authorization for force.

A senior Western official said that – while Moscow was unlikely to say so in public – there were signs Russian officials believe Assad was indeed responsible for the chemical weapons attack and it had strained Russian support for him.

Western countries are hoping that once any military strikes are finished, probably over Russia’s public objections, Moscow will be more cooperative than in the past in seeking a political solution, the official said.

Foreign ministers will also attend the G20 summit and will meet to discuss Syria.

Looking confident and relaxed, Putin said the burden was on other countries to convince Moscow Assad had used chemical arms. Russia has previously said it suspects rebels were behind the attack to provoke a U.S. military response. Putin said there was an "opinion" al Qaeda-linked rebels were to blame.

RUSSIA-U.S. TIES

He also said that Moscow had already sent to Syria some components of an S-300 missile system but was holding off on the delivery of final parts, something Putin threatened could happen if "existing international norms" were violated.

Western governments are concerned about the S-300 surface-to-air system, which could be used against their planes.

"We have supplied separate components, but the whole delivery is not finalized; we have suspended it for now. But if we see steps being undertaken that would violate existing international norms, we will think how to move forward, including on deliveries of such sensitive weapons," Putin said.

Regarding his relationship with Obama, Putin called the U.S. leader "a no-nonsense, practical person," and tried to dispel speculation that body language between the two leaders belied poor personal relations.

After cancelling a bilateral summit with Putin last month Obama said the Russian leader’s slouch can sometimes make him look "like the bored kid in the back of the classroom" but that his conversations with Putin were often constructive.

Obama had pulled out of the meeting with Putin, scheduled for before the G20 summit, after Russia granted temporary asylum to fugitive former U.S. spy contractor Edward Snowden, wanted by the United States for leaking information about surveillance programs. Putin said he still hoped to talk with Obama.

"I’m sure that even if we hold a meeting… on the sidelines of the summit, it will be useful in itself. In any case, we have many issues that we have been working on and we are interested in settling them," he said.

(Additional reporting by Vladimir Soldatkin and Gabriela Baczynska in Moscow and John Irish in Paris; Editing by Peter Graff)

 

Congress and the Imperial Presidency Debate Syria – An Analysis

Obama and assadNew

by Lawrence Davidson

Part I – The President Goes to Congress

President Obama has sidestepped the political hole he had dug for himself (what we might call the “red line” hole) over his proposed attack on Syria. Having insisted there must be “consequences” for a breach of international law, specifically the alleged use of banned chemical weapons by the Syrian government, he was faced with both popular American reluctance to support military action and Congressional pique over not being included in the decision process.

As a consequence President Obama announced on 31 August 2013 that he now supports a Congressional debate and vote on the issue of attacking Syria. Then he told us how he sees the situation, “This [Syrian chemical] attack is an assault on human dignity…. It risks making a mockery of the global prohibition on the use of chemical weapons…. Ultimately this is not about who occupies this [White House] office at any given time, its about who we are as a country.”

Part II – The U.S. and Chemical Weapons

For all I know, the president really believes his own words, but I am pretty sure his implied question of “who we are as a country” is meant to be rhetorical. If one was to give an evidence-based answer to that inquiry, as it relates to chemical weapons, it would be embarrassing in the extreme. Lest we forget, the U.S. defoliated parts of Vietnam with a chemical weapon called Agent Orange and by its use killed a lot more than large swaths of jungle. Agent Orange killed and maimed an estimated 400,000 Vietnamese and an estimated half a million children have subsequently been born deformed. It also did a fatal job on many of the American troops that handled the stuff. Later, the U.S. sold chemical and biological weapons-grade material to Saddam Hussein and followed up by helping his army aim the stuff accurately at Iranian troops. Saddam also used it on the Iraqi Kurds. Then there is the fact that our “very special friend,” Israel, used phosphorous bombs (a banned chemical weapon) on the civilians of Gaza. At the time Israel did this, President Obama occupied the oval office. I don’t remember him displaying any moral angst or positioning U.S. ships in the eastern Mediterranean with cruise missiles aimed at Israeli airbases. The truth is that during all of these episodes no one in the government worried (at least publicly) about what our actions or lack thereof, said about what sort of country this is.

However, this question does deserve a direct answer. What sort of country is the U.S. in relation to the use of chemical weapons? The kindest answer one can give is it is a bloody hypocritical nation.

Part III – Back to Congress

Nonetheless, sending the issue of a possible attack on Syria to Congress is a timely political move for the president. It puts off having to face the dilemma of taking military action that cannot both constitute meaningful punishment for the violation of international law and, at the same time, keep the U.S. from becoming ever more deeply embroiled in the Syrian civil war.

It also could be a good political move for the U.S. as a whole because it creates a good precedent. Having Congress debate and vote on the issue of military action against Syria could help resuscitate the moribund War Powers Act.  Although Obama claims he has the authority to launch an attack no matter what Congress decides, he would be politically hard pressed to do so if the legislators said don’t do it. Thus the maneuver might narrow the otherwise rapidly expanding powers of the imperial presidency. Of course, none of this means that Congress can’t be scared or otherwise bamboozled into giving the president the power to do something militarily stupid. Vietnam and Iraq stand as powerful precedents in that regard.

There is another very interesting potential consequence of the president’s going to Congress. It might create a situation where there is a publicly noticeable difference between the express desires of a majority of the voting population and the special interests now encouraging military action against Syria. In my last analysis I laid out the idea that in the interim between elections, the influence of powerful special interests have much more to say about policy than do the voters, most of whom pay little attention to foreign policy. Now, however, we have a rare moment when the populace is paying attention and polls indicate that a healthy majority do not want further intervention in the Middle East. Who will the Congress respond to in the upcoming debate and vote, their special interest constituents or the voting kind?

Part IV – Conclusion

Of course, the notion that the President of the United States, with or without Congressional approval, has the authority to act as the world’s “policeman” and punish violators of international laws, that it itself flaunts, is offensive and dangerous. There are international institutions in place such as the International Criminal Court (ICC) that, imperfect as they are, can be used to prosecute violations such as the use of banned weapons. (It is to be noted that the cause of “human dignity” would be greatly advanced if the U.S. would stop refusing to ratify the treaty empowering the ICC).

How do you characterize a situation where one or a small number of community members takes it upon themselves to go outside the law to punish alleged wrongdoers? Here in the U.S. this is known as “vigilante justice.” Most often this sort of behavior  results is a “lynching” based on little or no reliable evidence.

President Obama’s going to Congress will not change the vigilante nature of U.S. intentions. Let’s just hope that Congress listens to the people this time around and tells the President to keep his cruise missiles to himself. And then, lets hope he does just that.

***************************

Lawrence-Davidsonnew

DR. LAWRENCE DAVIDSON is a history professor at West Chester University in Pennsylvania. He is the author of Foreign Policy Inc.: Privatizing America’s National Interest; America’s Palestine: Popular and Offical Perceptions from Balfour to Israeli Statehood; and Islamic Fundamentalism. His academic work is focused on the history of American foreign relations with the Middle East. He also teaches courses in the history of science and modern European intellectual history.

His blog To The Point Analyses now has its own Facebook page. Along with the analyses, the Facebook page will also have reviews, pictures, and other analogous material.

 

Americans oppose U.S. military strikes in Syria, polls find

President Obama said Tuesday he was confident he would be able to work with Congress to pass a resolution authorizing military intervention in Syria.

By Morgan Little

3:13 p.m. CDT, September 3, 2013

WASHINGTON – President Obama has to persuade not just Congress on military intervention in Syria. New polling shows the American public is highly skeptical of the administration’s plan for limited missile strikes in response to the alleged use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government.

Fifty-nine percent of Americans oppose unilateral U.S. military action, according to an ABC News/Washington Post poll released Tuesday soon after Pew Research found that opponents of a strike outnumber supporters, 48% to 29%.

The divide tightens when Americans are asked about missile strikes conducted in conjunction with allied nations, with 51% in opposition and 46% in favor, according to the ABC News/Washington Post poll.

Americans are even more opposed to providing weapons to rebel forces in Syria, with 70% siding against a step that Obama has already decided to take, according to Pew.

DOCUMENT: U.S. chemical weapons intelligence report

Opposition to intervention appears to have grown since polling conducted last week by NBC News, which found a 50%-42% split against U.S. military action in response to the use of chemical weapons.

At the root of this opposition is not widespread skepticism about the chemical weapons attack , as 53% told Pew that there was clear evidence the Syrian government did carry it out.

One possible cause is the belief that Obama has yet to clearly state his case for action, with just 32% of Americans saying he has done so and 48% saying he has not, according to Pew.

Those who believe Obama has not offered an adequate explanation includes higher percentages of Republicans (60%) and independents (54%) than Democrats (33%). Pew’s polling was partly conducted after Obama’s Saturday address to the nation on his decision to ask Congress for its approval of any military response.

There’s little optimism about the possible aftermath of missile strikes, with 74% thinking they would prompt a backlash against the U.S. and allies, 61% predicting a long-term military commitment and just 33% thinking they would prevent the use of chemical weapons in the future, according to Pew.

Pew’s poll was conducted from Thursday to Sunday among a random sample of 1,000 adults, with a margin of error of plus or minus 3.7 percentage points. The ABC News/Washington Post poll was conducted Wednesday to Sunday among a random sample of 1,012 adults, with a margin of error of plus or minus 3.5 points. Both were conducted through land lines and cellphones.

 

Syria Conflict: Opposition Leader Haytham Al-Manna Criticises Plans For US Military Intervention As ‘Satanic’

Posted: 02/09/2013 12:50 BST  |  Updated: 02/09/2013 13:51 BST

 

syria

Western military action in Syria would be a "satanic intervention against a satanic regime", a leading Syrian opposition figure has warned.

Speaking to the Huffington Post UK, Haytham al-Manna, the Paris-based spokesman of the National Coordination Committee (NCC), said: "Our position is against any [western] aggression against Syria. There is no [option of] military aggression against the regime, it will be against.. the population."

The NCC, which consists of a dozen or so secular, leftist political parties inside Syria, is not a member of the Syrian National Council (SNC), the coalition of opposition groups recognised as the legitimate representative of the Syrian people by several western governments. The latter has long supported western military intervention against Assad; the former does not.

The NCC’s Manna, a veteran human-rights activist whose brother was killed by the Assad regime, said US ordnance won’t "make the distinction between military and civilian targets. I saw what happened in Iraq..and all the [previous] American interventions."

haytham manna

Manna’s brother was killed by the Assad regime but he doesn’t support military intervention

Manna added: "We are against the intervention in Syria of Hizbollah [and] of foreign fighters from al Qaeda. We cannot build democracy in Syria with others."

Criticising the United States, Turkey, Israel and other regional powers, he said: "We are not in favour of a satanic intervention against a satanic regime."

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Several other opposition groups have criticised the NCC for being too soft on the Syrian government, with the rebelFree Syrian Army (FSA) dismissing it as "just the other face of the same coin". But Manna insisted that the "political opposition outside Syria" is a "minority inside the country". The NCC spokesman claimed that "the majority of Syrian society is against any [foreign military] intervention".

Referring to the proposed ‘Geneva II’ UN-backed peace conference in Switzerland, Manna warned that "we have now the opportunity.. to push all parties, the regime and the opposition, to go to Geneva.. Up to now, [the Assad regime] accepted it had to go to Geneva.. I am not sure [Assad] will go at the end of the year."

bashar al assad

Manna wants pressure to be put on Assad and the rebels to attend peace talks in Geneva

However, most of Syria’s opposition groups, as well as a growing number of Western diplomats, believe Assad will not agree to negotiate with his opponents unless there is a credible threat of US-led military action. Manna disagrees. "If [Assad] doesn’t accept [he has] to go, Russia will change its position [of support] because it is an essential part of Geneva II."

Responding to his critics who take a more hardline stance against the regime, and insist on Assad’s resignation as a precondition to peace talks, Manna said that the rebels had been refusing to negotiate with the Syrian president for over two years "and we lost more than 70,000 people in Syria because of this position". The prolonging of the Syrian civil war, he explained, "is only in the interests of Assad and al Qaeda".

For Manna, there is no alternative to negotiations. "The regime and the opposition must go to Geneva II without preconditions," he told HuffPost UK. "The only precondition is applying [the principles of the] Geneva communique. And this is in the interests of the democratic opposition, not of al Qaeda [or] the Islamists." TheGeneva communique, published in June 2012, called on all parties to the conflict to recommit to a "sustained cessation of armed violence" and immediately implement the then UN envoy Kofi Annan’s six-point peace plan.

In recent days, US and UK officials have spoken about the importance of "enforcing the international norm with respect to chemical weapons" and taking military action to punish the Assad regime for its alleged use of sarin gas against civilians in Ghouta, east of Damascus on 21 August.

Manna, however, pointed out that enforcing international law "is not a decision for Congress or for the French parliament.. We don’t accept any unilateral decision from any country in the world, whether it is the US or Iran or the UK."

 

Is The United States Going To Go To War With Syria Over A Natural Gas Pipeline?

By Michael Snyder, on September 3rd, 2013

Pipeline

Why has the little nation of Qatar spent 3 billion dollars to support the rebels in Syria?  Could it be because Qatar is the largest exporter of liquid natural gas in the world and Assad won’t let them build a natural gas pipeline through Syria?  Of course.  Qatar wants to install a puppet regime in Syria that will allow them to build a pipeline which will enable them to sell lots and lots of natural gas to Europe.  Why is Saudi Arabia spending huge amounts of money to help the rebels and why has Saudi Prince Bandar bin Sultan been "jetting from covert command centers near the Syrian front lines to the Élysée Palace in Paris and the Kremlin in Moscow, seeking to undermine the Assad regime"?  Well, it turns out that Saudi Arabia intends to install their own puppet government in Syria which will allow the Saudis to control the flow of energy through the region.  On the other side, Russia very much prefers the Assad regime for a whole bunch of reasons.  One of those reasons is that Assad is helping to block the flow of natural gas out of the Persian Gulf into Europe, thus ensuring higher profits for Gazprom.  Now the United States is getting directly involved in the conflict.  If the U.S. is successful in getting rid of the Assad regime, it will be good for either the Saudis or Qatar (and possibly for both), and it will be really bad for Russia.  This is a strategic geopolitical conflict about natural resources, religion and money, and it really has nothing to do with chemical weapons at all.

It has been common knowledge that Qatar has desperately wanted to construct a natural gas pipeline that will enable it to get natural gas to Europe for a very long time.  The following is an excerpt from an articlefrom 2009

Qatar has proposed a gas pipeline from the Gulf to Turkey in a sign the emirate is considering a further expansion of exports from the world’s biggest gasfield after it finishes an ambitious programme to more than double its capacity to produce liquefied natural gas (LNG).

"We are eager to have a gas pipeline from Qatar to Turkey," Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, the ruler of Qatar, said last week, following talks with the Turkish president Abdullah Gul and the prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the western Turkish resort town of Bodrum. "We discussed this matter in the framework of co-operation in the field of energy. In this regard, a working group will be set up that will come up with concrete results in the shortest possible time," he said, according to Turkey’s Anatolia news agency.

Other reports in the Turkish press said the two states were exploring the possibility of Qatar supplying gas to the strategic Nabucco pipeline project, which would transport Central Asian and Middle Eastern gas to Europe, bypassing Russia. A Qatar-to-Turkey pipeline might hook up with Nabucco at its proposed starting point in eastern Turkey. Last month, Mr Erdogan and the prime ministers of four European countries signed a transit agreement for Nabucco, clearing the way for a final investment decision next year on the EU-backed project to reduce European dependence on Russian gas.

"For this aim, I think a gas pipeline between Turkey and Qatar would solve the issue once and for all," Mr Erdogan added, according to reports in several newspapers. The reports said two different routes for such a pipeline were possible. One would lead from Qatar through Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Iraq to Turkey. The other would go through Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Syria and on to Turkey. It was not clear whether the second option would be connected to the Pan-Arab pipeline, carrying Egyptian gas through Jordan to Syria. That pipeline, which is due to be extended to Turkey, has also been proposed as a source of gas for Nabucco.

Based on production from the massive North Field in the Gulf, Qatar has established a commanding position as the world’s leading LNG exporter. It is consolidating that through a construction programme aimed at increasing its annual LNG production capacity to 77 million tonnes by the end of next year, from 31 million tonnes last year. However, in 2005, the emirate placed a moratorium on plans for further development of the North Field in order to conduct a reservoir study.

As you just read, there were two proposed routes for the pipeline.  Unfortunately for Qatar, Saudi Arabia said no to the first route and Syria said no to the second route.  The following is from an absolutely outstanding article in the Guardian

In 2009 – the same year former French foreign minister Dumas alleges the British began planning operations in Syria – Assad refused to sign a proposed agreement with Qatar that would run a pipeline from the latter’s North field, contiguous with Iran’s South Pars field, through Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Syria and on to Turkey, with a view to supply European markets – albeit crucially bypassing Russia. Assad’s rationale was "to protect the interests of [his] Russian ally, which is Europe’s top supplier of natural gas."

Instead, the following year, Assad pursued negotiations for an alternative $10 billion pipeline plan with Iran, across Iraq to Syria, that would also potentially allow Iran to supply gas to Europe from its South Pars field shared with Qatar. The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the project was signed in July 2012 – just as Syria’s civil war was spreading to Damascus and Aleppo – and earlier this year Iraq signed a framework agreement for construction of the gas pipelines.

The Iran-Iraq-Syria pipeline plan was a "direct slap in the face" to Qatar’s plans. No wonder Saudi Prince Bandar bin Sultan, in a failed attempt to bribe Russia to switch sides, told President Vladmir Putin that "whatever regime comes after" Assad, it will be"completely" in Saudi Arabia’s hands and will "not sign any agreement allowing any Gulf country to transport its gas across Syria to Europe and compete with Russian gas exports", according to diplomatic sources. When Putin refused, the Prince vowed military action.

If Qatar is able to get natural gas flowing into Europe, that will be a significant blow to Russia.  So the conflict in Syria is actually much more about a pipeline than it is about the future of the Syrian people.  In a recent article, Paul McGuire summarized things quite nicely…

The Nabucco Agreement was signed by a handful of European nations and Turkey back in 2009. It was an agreement to run a natural gas pipeline across Turkey into Austria, bypassing Russia again with Qatar in the mix as a supplier to a feeder pipeline via the proposed Arab pipeline from Libya to Egypt to Nabucco (is the picture getting clearer?). The problem with all of this is that a Russian backed Syria stands in the way.

Qatar would love to sell its LNG to the EU and the hot Mediterranean markets. The problem for Qatar in achieving this is Saudi Arabia. The Saudis have already said "NO" to an overland pipe cutting across the Land of Saud. The only solution for Qatar if it wants to sell its oil is to cut a deal with the U.S.

Recently Exxon Mobile and Qatar Petroleum International have made a $10 Billion deal that allows Exxon Mobile to sell natural gas through a port in Texas to the UK and Mediterranean markets. Qatar stands to make a lot of money and the only thing standing in the way of their aspirations is Syria.

The US plays into this in that it has vast wells of natural gas, in fact the largest known supply in the world. There is a reason why natural gas prices have been suppressed for so long in the US. This is to set the stage for US involvement in the Natural Gas market in Europe while smashing the monopoly that the Russians have enjoyed for so long. What appears to be a conflict with Syria is really a conflict between the U.S. and Russia!

The main cities of turmoil and conflict in Syria right now are Damascus, Homs, and Aleppo. These are the same cities that the proposed gas pipelines happen to run through. Qatar is the biggest financier of the Syrian uprising, having spent over $3 billion so far on the conflict. The other side of the story is Saudi Arabia, which finances anti-Assad groups in Syria. The Saudis do not want to be marginalized by Qatar; thus they too want to topple Assad and implant their own puppet government, one that would sign off on a pipeline deal and charge Qatar for running their pipes through to Nabucco.

Itsallover thispipeline

Yes, I know that this is all very complicated.

But no matter how you slice it, there is absolutely no reason for the United States to be getting involved in this conflict.

If the U.S. does get involved, we will actually be helping al-Qaeda terrorists that behead mothers and their infants

Al-Qaeda linked terrorists in Syria have beheaded all 24 Syrian passengers traveling from Tartus to Ras al-Ain in northeast of Syria, among them a mother and a 40-days old infant.

Gunmen from the terrorist Islamic State of Iraq and Levant stopped the bus on the road in Talkalakh and killed everyone before setting the bus on fire.

Is this really who we want to be "allied" with?

And of course once we strike Syria, the war could escalate into a full-blown conflict very easily.

If you believe that the Obama administration would never send U.S. troops into Syria, you are just being naive.  In fact, according to Jack Goldsmith, a professor at Harvard Law School, the proposed authorization to use military force that has been sent to Congress would leave the door wide open for American "boots on the ground"

The proposed AUMF focuses on Syrian WMD but is otherwise very broad.  It authorizes the President to use any element of the U.S. Armed Forces and any method of force.  It does not contain specific limits on targets – either in terms of the identity of the targets (e.g. the Syrian government, Syrian rebels, Hezbollah, Iran) or the geography of the targets.  Its main limit comes on the purposes for which force can be used.  Four points are worth making about these purposes.  First, the proposed AUMF authorizes the President to use force “in connection with” the use of WMD in the Syrian civil war. (It does not limit the President’s use force to the territory of Syria, but rather says that the use of force must have a connection to the use of WMD in the Syrian conflict.  Activities outside Syria can and certainly do have a connection to the use of WMD in the Syrian civil war.).  Second, the use of force must be designed to “prevent or deter the use or proliferation” of WMDs “within, to or from Syria” or (broader yet) to “protect the United States and its allies and partners against the threat posed by such weapons.”  Third, the proposed AUMF gives the President final interpretive authority to determine when these criteria are satisfied (“as he determines to be necessary and appropriate”).  Fourth, the proposed AUMF contemplates no procedural restrictions on the President’s powers (such as a time limit).

I think this AUMF has much broader implications thanIlya Somin described.  Some questions for Congress to ponder:

(1) Does the proposed AUMF authorize the President to take sides in the Syrian Civil War, or to attack Syrian rebels associated with al Qaeda, or to remove Assad from power? Yes, as long as the President determines that any of these entities has a (mere) connection to the use of WMD in the Syrian civil war, and that the use of force against one of them would prevent or deter the use or proliferation of WMD within, or to and from, Syria, or protect the U.S. or its allies (e.g. Israel) against the (mere) threat posed by those weapons.  It is very easy to imagine the President making such determinations with regard to Assad or one or more of the rebel groups.

(2) Does the proposed AUMF authorize the President to use force against Iran or Hezbollah, in Iran or Lebanon?  Again, yes, as long as the President determines that Iran or Hezbollah has a (mere) a connection to the use of WMD in the Syrian civil war, and the use of force against Iran or Hezbollah would prevent or deter the use or proliferation of WMD within, or to and from, Syria, or protect the U.S. or its allies (e.g. Israel) against the (mere) threat posed by those weapons.

Would you like to send your own son or your own daughter to fight in Syria just so that a natural gas pipeline can be built?

What the United States should be doing in this situation is so obvious that even the five-year-old grandson of Nancy Pelosi can figure it out…

I’ll tell you this story and then I really do have to go. My five-year-old grandson, as I was leaving San Francisco yesterday, he said to me, Mimi, my name, Mimi, war with Syria, are you yes war with Syria, no, war with Syria. And he’s five years old. We’re not talking about war; we’re talking about action. Yes war with Syria, no with war in Syria. I said, ‘Well, what do you think?’ He said, ‘I think no war.’

Unfortunately, his grandmother and most of our other insane "leaders" in Washington D.C. seem absolutely determined to take us to war.

In the end, how much American blood will be spilled over a stupid natural gas pipeline?

 

Ron Paul Gets Cut Off By CNN

Infowars.com
September 4, 2013

Ron Paul experiences ‘technical difficulties’ with his satellite connection while on CNN’s The Situation Room discussing possible US intervention in Syria.

Will Congress Reject Obama’s Attack on Syria?

No vote could spark constitutional crisis if White House launches attack anyway

Paul Joseph Watson
Infowars.com
September 4, 2013

Current indications suggest that Congress could reject the Obama administration’s draft resolution on Syria, setting up a potential constitutional crisis if Obama goes ahead and launches the attack anyway, as Secretary of State John Kerry has clearly suggested will happen.

According to a whip list compiled by the Hill, while the Senate vote to authorize the attack is already in the bag, 44 members of the House are either “no” or “leaning no” compared to just 17 who are “yes” or “leaning yes”. 31 Congressmembers are “undecided” or “unclear,” according to the Hill.

That leaves a further 343 members of Congress who have yet to take a public stance on the issue, although with national polls of Americans clearly showing that a majority oppose the strike, negative sentiment towards the idea of launching an attack seems to be the dominant factor.

“Most House Republicans who have taken a stance are vowing to vote no, or are leaning no,” the report notes. Despite receiving the backing of leadership allies like Lindsey Graham, John McCain, Nancy Pelosi and John Boehner, the consensus is that Obama faces an “uphill battle” to convince Congress as a whole.

According to Congressman Justin Amash, a staunch critic of military intervention, his visits with constituents have revealed, “Almost unanimous opposition to U.S. strikes.”

“It’s running at almost 100 to 1 against strikes in terms of people contacting me,” Amash told CBSaffiliate WWMZ-TV. “It’s pretty overwhelming. I think it’s pretty solidly against military strikes.”

Other House members, such as Rep. Eric Swalwell, have remarked that they cannot vote for the Obama resolution because it is far too broad and greases the skids for boots on the ground and open ended war throughout the region.

A great deal of this opposition could of course be fairly easily overturned if we were to be presented with another convenient chemical weapons attack or a strike on US interests blamed on Assad before the vote takes place.

However, as we highlighted on Monday, both Secretary of State John Kerry and another State Department official have indicated that Obama will go ahead with military intervention anyway even if Congress does not give the green light.

“We don’t contemplate that the Congress is going to vote no,” Kerry asserted on Sunday, adding that Obama has the right to order attacks “no matter what Congress does”.

Kerry restated the same position yesterday during his confrontation with Senator Rand Paul, prompting Paul to respond, “You’re making a joke of us, you’re making us into theater.”

Obama has also insisted that he has the authority to launch the attack without Congressional backing, emphasizing once again that the whole process appears to be little more than a fig leaf or mere window dressing for a decision that has already been made.

The Obama administration’s apparent disregard for the fact that the founders intended war powers to be firmly within the control of Congress is setting the stage for a major constitutional confrontation the likes of which America hasn’t witnessed for decades.

Let us recall the words of James Madison, the architect of the Constitution, who stated, “In no part of the constitution is more wisdom to be found, than in the clause which confides the question of war or peace to the legislature.”

Should Congress reject the authorization to launch the attack on Syria and the White House, as it has promised, goes ahead and orders the strike anyway, a constitutional crisis could be sparked and at the very least there will be calls from Republicans to begin impeachment proceedings against Obama, just as there were when he failed to obtain Congressional approval for the attack on Libya in 2011.

Kerry Says Ground Troops May Be Needed in Syria

Corporate media makes it sound like Secretary of State opposed to boots on the ground

Kurt Nimmo
Infowars.com
September 4, 2013

If the CIA’s al-Qaeda shock troops at work in Syria get their hands on chemical weapons, Secretary of State John Kerry told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Tuesday, the United States should respond with ground troops.

“In the event Syria imploded, for instance, or in the event there was a threat of a chemical weapons cache falling into the hands of al-Nusra or someone else and it was clearly in the interest of our allies — and all of us, the British, the French and others to prevent those weapons of mass destruction falling into the hands of the worst elements,” Kerry told Congress, “I don’t want to take off the table an option that might or might not be available to the president of the United States to secure our country.”

Kerry said Obama does not want to discount the possibility of U.S. boots on the ground. “I don’t want anything coming out of this hearing that leaves any door open to any possibilities, so let’s shut that door now, as tight was we can,” he responded following remarks made by Senator Bob Corker, a Tennessee Republican, who said Congress will make sure U.S. troops will not be used.

The Secretary of State said bombing Syria and possibly deploying troops to topple the al-Assad regime and defeat his military should not be characterized as going to war.

“Let me be clear: President Obama is not asking America to go to war,” he told the committee.

Near the end of Kerry’s testimony — and as if on cue — professional and foundation funded protester Medea Benjamin of Code Pink interrupted the proceedings by stating the obvious: “we don’t want another war” and “launching cruise missiles means another war.”

She was politely escorted from the hearing.

 

Syria: Conservative Icons Put “Anti-War” Left to Shame

Drudge, Buchanan, Rand Paul & Justin Amash highlight hypocrisy of Obama supporters

Paul Joseph Watson
Infowars.com
September 4, 2013

Clockwise: Matt Drudge, Justin Amash, Pat Buchanan, Rand Paul.

While ideologues of the so-called “anti-war” left have offered milquetoast dissent or even supported Barack Obama’s planned attack on Syria, conservative icons in both politics and media are leading the backlash against another potentially disastrous foreign intervention.

It’s a phenomenon that many are attempting to understand – what happened to the substantial and vehement army of anti-war leftists who opposed George W. Bush in the run up to the 2003 invasion of Iraq? The vast majority of them undoubtedly voted for Obama once if not twice, and are apparently placing their slavish devotion to the President above the interests of the country by refusing to speak out against an aggressive intervention that could spark a far wider regional conflict.

It’s a sentiment encapsulated by Democratic Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, who admitted that the only reason she and other Democrats would vote for Obama’s resolution on Syria was out of “loyalty” to the President.

While leftists have largely remained silent , media conservatives like Matt Drudge and Pat Buchanan, along with political heavyweights like Senator Rand Paul and Congressman Justin Amash have comprised the tip of the spear in opposing the White House’s rush to war.

As the Washington Times’ Ryan James Girdusky highlights, Syria has thrown fresh spotlight on the rise of the anti-war right.

“Where is the antiwar left on the war?” he asks, “Mostly silent. Not even Vermont’s Socialist Senator Bernie Sanders has come out in early opposition of a war with Syria.”

“Our Nobel Peace Prize-winning President has killed thousands of innocent children across the Middle East with his drone strikes as well as the antiwar left with his empty rhetoric,” adds Girdusky, calling on Republicans to “leave behind the foreign policy of President Bush.”

Just check out some of the tweets from recent days by leading conservative thinkers in both media and politics, individuals who are not only putting the so-called anti-war left to shame but also establishment Republicans like McCain, Graham and Boehner who have all voted to back Obama’s war.

more syria tweets

more syria tweets 1

more syria tweets 2

Compare this sentiment to the likes of “anti-war icon” Noam Chomsky, who has actually expressed support for increased military intervention in Syria by advocating the Obama administration arm the Al-Qaeda-led rebels.

“I believe you should choose the negotiating track first, and should you fail, then moving to the second option” — backing the rebels — “becomes more acceptable,” said Chomsky, while calling for an attack so long as it is backed by the United Nations.

One notable exception on the left has been Oliver Stone, who has aggressively opposed Obama on Syria and recently called the President a snake in light of the NSA spying controversy and the Edward Snowden affair.

Conservative backlash against an attack on Syria has also been dovetailed by a wave of active duty and military veterans taking to Twitter to express their opposition to fighting on the same side as Al-Qaeda as part of the #IdidntJoin meme.

 

Syrian Activists Form ‘Human Shields’ Around Military Installations

Will Obama take the ultimate step to embodying ‘war criminal’ status?

Adan Salazar
Infowars.com
Sept. 4, 2013

Syrian activists have taken to forming “human shields” around military installations in the capital of Damascus in efforts to discourage the Obama administration from authorizing “limited” military strikes on the Syrian regime.

According to RT, a coalition of activists have placed themselves around the predicted target of Mount Qasioun, an installation northeast of the Syrian capital of Damascus home to “security and military buildings” as well as Syrian regime armed forces.

Still from RT video

Still from RT video

“Protesters rallying beside the place called themselves a ‘human shield’ and hold banners featuring slogans such as ‘No more American bombing democracy’ and ‘Hands off Syria,’” RT reported today.

Still from RT video

Still from RT video

“We are here to express our loyalty to our country in the face of American threats,” a participant reportedly told RT, adding, “We don’t want what they did in Iraq over chemical weapons claims to be done in our country.”

Still from RT video

Still from RT video

Should Obama authorize military strikes in the face of this form of protest, he will have assuredly assumed the role of war criminal, if his past transgressions haven’t already earned him that title.

Late last month, we documented how the Syrian people were already hard-pressed to find places they could safely hide from Obama’s “humanitarian love bombs” should he sway in the direction of cruise missile strikes.

“We live in the capital. Every turn, every street, every neighborhood has some government target. Where do we hide?” one panicked Damascus resident told Reuters.

“What about my friend?” asked another woman whose family was lucky enough to escape to a safe area. “Her whole family lives in this neighborhood. There is no place for them to go.”

Apparently unfazed by the UK parliament’s historic “no” vote last week in response to Prime Minister David Cameron’s request to attack Syria, Obama, bellicose members of Congress and a compliant lapdog media have been undeterred in their efforts to try to convince the American people chemical weapons used in Syria pose a serious threat to American interests, despite the fact no evidence has been produced directly implicating the Syrian government.

 

Breaking: Russia Says Syria Chemical Weapons Made By Rebels

Anthony Gucciardi
Infowars.com
September 4, 2013

A new report from Russia lends evidence that the March 19 chemical attack in Syria was in fact carried out by the Obama-backed Syria rebels, highlighting the reality of the latest attacks.

syriaattack

In a new breaking report released by the Russian Foreign Ministry just moments ago, it has now been announced that the March 19 chemical weapons responsible for the attacks in Syria and blamed on Assad’s government army are linked up to rebel-made weaponry. Specifically, the findings state that the chemical weapon shells are very much different from the standard Syrian army weaponry and extremely similar to those made by the US-funded rebels who have been caught time and time again burning villages full of innocents.

The report from Russia’s RT reads:

“Probes from Khan al-Assal show chemicals used in the March 19 attack did not belong to standard Syrian army ammunition, and that the shell carrying the substance was similar to those made by a rebel fighter group, the Russian Foreign Ministry stated.”

And perhaps more importantly, the report goes on to mention that “the way is being paved for military action” through the blame on Assad for launching the attacks despite evidence showing the contrary. In fact, Syrian officials have gone on record in the past saying that evidence was submitted to the UN showing how there was information pointing towards the rebels carrying out the attacks. The relationship to the latest attacks is undeniable.

Prominent Analysts Label Attacks ‘False Flag’

The latest report coincides with what major analysts have been saying about the entire event as well as what I have been saying in reports regarding the latest attacks. Initially pushing the concept into the media, it was Ron Paul who went on air and labeled the attacks a false flag in a report that has now gone international in a major way. Paul was then followed by Pat Buchanan, who went on air saying that the attacks ‘reeked of a false flag’.

Now, it seems extremely clear to those who are following what’s going on that we were indeed correct in this analysis when considering this news. Yet, despite this reality, Obama and his handlers continue to push the nation into a hot war with Syria that could involve boots on the ground and the ignition of heavy military action against Assad.

Russia releases key findings on chemical attack near Aleppo indicating similarity with rebel-made weapons

Published time: September 04, 2013 17:02
Edited time: September 04, 2013 18:05

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People injured in what the government said was a chemical weapons attack, breathe through oxygen masks as they are treated at a hospital in the Syrian city of Aleppo March 19, 2013 (Reuters / George Ourfalian)

People injured in what the government said was a chemical weapons attack, breathe through oxygen masks as they are treated at a hospital in the Syrian city of Aleppo March 19, 2013 (Reuters / George Ourfalian)

Probes from Khan al-Assal show chemicals used in the March 19 attack did not belong to standard Syrian army ammunition, and that the shell carrying the substance was similar to those made by a rebel fighter group, the Russian Foreign Ministry stated.

A statement released by the ministry on Wednesday particularly drew attention to the “massive stove-piping of various information aimed at placing the responsibility for the alleged chemical weapons use in Syria on Damascus, even though the results of the UN investigation have not yet been revealed.”

By such means “the way is being paved for military action” against Damascus, the ministry pointed out.

But the samples taken at the site of the March 19 attack and analyzed by Russian experts indicate that a projectile carrying the deadly nerve agent sarin was most likely fired at Khan al-Assal by the rebels, the ministry statement suggests, outlining the 100-page report handed over to the UN by Russia.

The key points of the report have been given as follows:

• the shell used in the incident “does not belong to the standard ammunition of the Syrian army and was crudely according to type and parameters of the rocket-propelled unguided missiles manufactured in the north of Syria by the so-called Bashair al-Nasr brigade”;

• RDX, which is also known as hexogen or cyclonite, was used as the bursting charge for the shell, and it is “not used in standard chemical munitions”;

• soil and shell samples contain “the non-industrially synthesized nerve agent sarin and diisopropylfluorophosphate,” which was “used by Western states for producing chemical weapons during World War II.”

DETAILS TO FOLLOW

Syrians behead Christians for helping military, as CIA ships in arms

By Cheryl K. Chumley

The Washington Times

Thursday, June 27, 2013

A priest and another Christian were beheaded before a cheering crowd by Syrian insurgents who say they aided and abetted the enemy, President Bashar Assad’s military, foreign media reported.

An undated video that made the Internet rounds on Wednesday showed two unnamed men with tied hands surrounded by a cheering crowd of dozens, just moments before their heads were cut off with a small knife, Syria Report said. The attackers in the video then lifted the head for show, and placed it back on the body. The incident took place in the countryside of Idlib, the media report said.


SEE ALSO: U.S., Arab and European allies pledge more support for Syrian rebels


Syria Report said that foreign militants have increased attacks on civilians in recent weeks — and that many of these insurgents are supported by the West and by Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey. Just recently, a Catholic priest was recently executed by radicals, and last month, an entire Christian village in Homs was burned to the ground, Syria Report said. Moreover, two Christian bishops kidnapped in Aleppo at the beginning of the year are still missing.

The reported beheading of the two Christians comes about the same time America has started sending arms to rebel fighters, the Wall Street Journal revealed this week. The Journal reported the Central Intelligence Agency just began transporting weapons to Jordan for eventual transfer to Syrian fighters.

The weapons transfer is aimed at helping Free Syrian forces oust Mr. Assad. It’s scheduled to coincide with arms shipments from other European and Arab allies for a planned and coordinated rebel attack set for August, the Journal reported.

The CIA weapons transfer will take about three weeks, and involves light arms — and possibly antitank missiles, the Journal said.

Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/jun/27/syrians-behead-christians-helping-military-cia-shi/#ixzz2dx2kSLPP
Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter

 

‘Nobody Wants This Except the Military-Industrial Complex’

John Nichols on September 4, 2013 – 12:19 AM ET


A man sits in front of houses destroyed during a Syrian Air Force air strike in Azaz, Syria on August 15, 2012. (REUTERS/Goran Tomasevic)

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, backs President Obama’s request for authorization to intervene militarily in Syria, as does House Democratic Minority Nancy Pelosi, D-California.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, is similarly “in,” while Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, in mum.

The president has done a pretty good job of selling his plan to congressional leaders.

He has not, however, sold it to the American people.

Thus, when members of Congress decide which side they’re on in the Syrian intervention votes that are expected to take place next week, they will have to consider whether they want to respond to pro-war pressure from inside-the-Beltway—as so many did when they authorized action against Iraq—or to the anti-war sentiments of their constituents.

Reflecting on the proposed intervention, Congressman Alan Grayson, D-Florida, allowed as how“nobody wants this except the military-industrial complex.”

The level of opposition might not be quite so overwhelming.

But it is strikingly high.

And, even as the president makes his case, skepticism about intervention appears to be growing.

A Pew Research survey released Tuesday found support for air strikes had collapsed from 45 percent to 29 percent, while opposition had spiked. “The public has long been skeptical of U.S. involvement in Syria, but an April survey found more support than opposition to the idea of a US-led military response if the use of chemical weapons was confirmed,” Pew reported Tuesday. “The new survey finds both broad concern over the possible consequences of military action in Syria and little optimism it will be effective.”

The latest Washington Post/ABC News poll, released after the president announced he would seek congressional authorization for an attack on Syria, and after several days of administration lobbying for that attack, found that voters are overwhelmingly opposed to intervention.

“The United States says it has determined that the Syrian government has used chemical weapons in the civil war there,” the Post/ABC poll asked. “Given this, do you support or oppose the United States launching missile strikes against the Syrian government?”

* Sixty percent of registered voters (59 percent of all respondents) express opposition. Just 36 percent support intervention.

* Self-identified Democrats are opposed 54-42—a 12 point gap.

* Republicans are opposed 55-43—a similar 12 point gap.

* The fiercest opposition is among independents, who disapprove of intervention by a 66-30 margin. That figure suggests that members of Congress who represent swing districts might actually be more vulnerable if they vote to authorize the attack.

In addition to being broad-based, the opposition sentiment runs deep. Even if US allies such as Britain and France join in, a 51-46 majority is still opposed to missile strikes.

The idea of going further and trying to topple the Syrian regime appears to be a political non-starter. Seventy percent of those surveyed oppose supplying weapons to the Syrian rebels, while just 30 percent support the proposal that has been floated by President Obama and Republican hawks such as Arizona Senator John McCain.

What is especially notable about the polling data is the intensity of opposition to any sort of intervention—including missile strikes targeted at suspected chemical weapons sites—among groups that lean Democratic at election time.

* Sixty-five percent of women surveyed for The Post/ABC poll oppose missile strikes, while just 30 percent favor them. (The Pew survey found an even lower level of support among women: just 19 percent)

* Among Americans under age 40 who were surveyed for the Post/ABC poll, 65 percent are opposed.

* Among Hispanics, 63 percent are opposed.

* Among African-Americans, 56 percent are opposed.

On the question of arming the rebels, opposition numbers skyrocket.

* Seventy-six percent of women surveyed for the Post/ABC poll are opposed.

* Seventy-four percent of those under age 40 are opposed.

* Seventy-three percent of African-Americans are opposed.

Regionally, the Democratic-leaning states of the Midwest and the Northeast are more opposed than the Republican-leaning states of the South.

It is true that foreign policy is not always made on the basis of polling data. It is true that patterns of war weariness and concern about how to address the use of chemical weapons makes the current circumstance volatile. And it is true that poll numbers can change. But it is worth noting that discomfort with launching air strikes—let alone any other intervention—is running strong among voters who have followed the story closely and among voters who have only recently begun to engage with it. Pew reports that “opposition to the idea is prevalent regardless of people’s level of interest—nearly half oppose airstrikes among the most and least attentive segments of the public.”

 

Matthews: Syrian Babies Need to Die to Save Obama

Kurt Nimmo
Infowars.com
September 4, 2013

MSNBC talking head, former cop and indefatigable cheerleader for Obama and the Democrat side of the one party political system, Chris Matthews, has declared Syrian babies and grandmothers must die to salvage Obama’s dismal political future. He didn’t say it like that, of course, but he might as well have.

It should be obvious to all who bother to pay attention there is no difference between Obama, John Boehner, Nancy Pelosi, John McCain, Barbara Boxer, et al, ad infinitum and ad nauseam.

All to varying degrees and with differing tact support the War Party and the apparently endless drive of the military-industrial complex to foment profitable wars and shake and bake the geopolitical chessboard to keep the game going for the bankers and their transnational corporate buddies. Because the political system is rigged like a game of three-card Monte and the antiwar movement is dead as a doornail, none of them have to worry about losing their cushy careers.

It’s Matthews’ job to provide cover – no matter how feeble – for mass murder, even though hardly anybody tunes MSNBC in anymore except a few hundred thousand diehard “progressives” who are pathetically deluded into thinking military intervention in Syria is somehow humanitarian.

President Bashar al-Assad’s interview with Le Figaro

President Bashar al-Assad’s interview with Le Figaro

Infowars.com
September 4, 2013

Note: English translation of the Le Figaro interview reposted from SANA, the Syrian state government news agency.

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

President Bashar al-Assad gave an interview to Le Figaro. Following is the full text:

Le Figaro: Mr. President, the Americans and the French have accused you of perpetrating a chemical attack on the 21st of August in Ghouta, which led to the death of hundreds. Do you have evidence to suggest that your army did not launch the attack?

President al-Assad: First of all, anyone making such an accusation is also responsible for providing the evidence to substantiate the allegation. We have challenged them to present a shred of legitimate evidence, which they have not been able to do. Since their foreign policy should be tailored to suit the interests of their own people, we have challenged them to present legitimate evidence to their own public opinion to substantiate their claims; again they have not done so.

Secondly, where is the logic in us carrying out an attack of this nature: two years into the crisis I can confidently state that the situation on the ground is much better now than it was a year ago; how is it conceivable then that an army making significant advancements on the ground through conventional armament would resort to using weapons of mass destruction?

I am neither confirming nor denying that we possess such weapons – this is not a matter for discussion. For the sake of argument, if the army had such weapons and decided to use them, is it conceivable that it would use them in areas where its own troops are deployed? Where is the logic in that? Additionally is it really plausible that the use of these weapons in a heavily populated area in the suburbs of the capital did not kill tens of thousands; these substances travel in the air.

Le Figaro: Were soldiers from the Syrian Army injured by the weapons?

President al-Assad: Yes, in the ‘Baharia’ area, in the suburbs of Damascus; the inspectors from the UN team met with them in hospital.

Le Figaro: Some do acknowledge that there has been some advancement by the army on the ground; however in other areas the rebels have also advanced and you are looking to wipe them out.

President al-Assad: Again, the areas in question are residential areas. The use of chemical weapons in these areas would result in the deaths of tens of thousands. All the accusations are based on unsubstantiated claims made by the terrorists and random pictures and videos posted on the Internet.

Le Figaro: The Americans have stated that they have intercepted a telephone conversation between an executive in you inner circle and officers in the Army giving the order to use these weapons.

We will only discuss substantiated truths

President al-Assad: If the Americans, the French or the British had a single shred of evidence they would have disclosed it from day one. We will not contest rumours and dubious allegations; we will only discuss substantiated truths – if they have any, they should present them.

Le Figaro: Is it possible that someone from your inner circle or officers in the Syrian Army took the decision without your knowledge?

President al-Assad: Again – regardless of whether we do or do not possess such weapons, in any country that does possess these weapons, the decision to deploy is usually centralized. Either way, this is classified military information.

Le Figaro: But this is what Jihad Makdissi stated.

President al-Assad: No, at the time, Jihad said that should we possess these weapons, we would not use them. Whether we do or do not possess them is an entirely Syrian affair.

Le Figaro: President Obama has postponed a military strike on Syria, how do you explain this?

President al-Assad: Some have seen Obama as weak because of his decision to withdraw or delay a possible strike by days or weeks; by waging a war on Syria, others have seen him as a strong leader of a powerful country.

Power lies in your ability to prevent wars not in igniting them

From my perspective, power lies in your ability to prevent wars not in igniting them. Power comes from ones ability to stand up and acknowledge their mistakes; if Obama was strong, he would have stood up and said that there is no evidence that the Syrian government used chemical weapons, he would have stood up and said that the right way forward is to wait for the results of the UN investigations and workthrough the UN Security Council. However, as I see it, he is weak because he succumbed to internal pressure from small groups and threatened military action. As I said strong leaders are those who prevent wars not those who inflame them.

Le Figaro: What do you say to members of congress whose vote will determine whether or not there will be any military action?

President al-Assad: Before they vote, they should ask themselves a simple question: What have previous wars achieved for America, or even for Europe? What has the world achieved from the war in Libya and the spread of terrorism in its aftermath? What has the world achieved from the wars in Iraq and other places? What will the world achieve from supporting terrorism in Syria?

Members of congress are entrusted to serve in the best interests of their country. Before they vote, they need to weigh up their decision in the interests of their own country. It is not in the interests of the US to perpetuate instability and extremism in the Middle East. It is not in their interests to continue – what George Bush started – spreading wars in the world.

If they think logically and in the interests of their country, they will not find any benefits to these wars. However many of them they have not mastered the art of logic in their political decision-making.

Le Figaro: How will you respond to these strikes, should they happen?

President al-Assad: If we think of the Middle East as a barrel of explosives close to a fire that is coming ever closer, then it becomes clear that the issue is no longer contained to a Syrian response, but rather what will happen after the first strike. The architects of the war can define the first strike – in other words they can determine what they will do, but beyond that it is impossible for anyone to predict what will follow. Once the barrel explodes, everyone loses control; nobody can determine the outcome, however what is certain is the spread of chaos, wars and extremism in all its forms everywhere.

Le Figaro: Is there a danger that it will spill into a regional conflict?

The issue today is no longer just about Syria, but about a whole region that is interlinked

President al-Assad: Of course, this is the first and most dangerous risk. The issue today is no longer just about Syria, but about a whole region that is interlinked, socially, politically and militarily; the resulting challenges are regional, not just Syrian.

Le Figaro: So is it likely that Israel would be one of your targets?

President al-Assad: You don’t really expect me to announce how we will respond?! It is not realistic that we would announce our plans, but as I said there are many players involved and narrowing the conversation to just one player diminishes the significance of what will happen.

Le Figaro: What do you say to Jordan who is known to be training the rebels on the ground? What is at risk for Jordan should the strike occur in favour of the rebels and terrorists?

President al-Assad: Our policy has always been to not export our problems to neighbouring countries. We have been striking the thousands of terrorists that have entered Syria via Jordan, and Jordan has announced that it would not provide a base for any military strikes against Syria. However, should we not succeed in fighting terrorism in Syria, we can only expect that it will spread to other countries along with the ensuing chaos and extremism.

Le Figaro: So are you warning Jordan and Turkey?

Our priority is to fight terrorism within Syria

President al-Assad: We have said this before and we have communicated this to them directly and indirectly. I believe Jordan is fully aware of the situation, despite the pressure on it to continue to be a route for this terrorism. As for Erdogan, I don’t think he has a clue of what he is doing. Our priority is to fight terrorism within Syria.

Le Figaro: How will your allies – Hezbollah and Iran – respond to any strike? Are you counting on their support should you be attacked?

President al-Assad: I do not wish to speak on their behalf, their statements have been very clear. We are all aware that this is a regional issue and as such it is impossible to separate the interests of Syria, Iran, Hezbollah and other countries that are supporting us.

Today, stability in the region depends on the situation in Syria; Russia fully fathoms this. Russia is neither defending the President nor Syria, but rather it is defending stability in this region knowing all too well that otherwise it will also be affected. To assess the situation through the narrow lens of a Syrian-Iranian alliance is a naïve and over simplistic view; we are dealing with a situation of far greater significance.

Le Figaro: Have the Russians reassured you that they will reach out to the Americans to try to attenuate the strike?

President al-Assad: I don’t think anyone can trust the Americans; I don’t think there is a country in the world that can guarantee that the Americans will or will not take any form of action towards another country, so it is pointless to look for such reassurances. The Americans adopt one position in the morning, only to endorse the complete opposite in the evening. As long as the US does not comply with or listen to the UN, we should not be reassured.

Le Figaro: How can we stop the war, the crisis in Syria has been on going for more than two-and-half years? You have suggested a National Unity government, the international community has suggested Geneva II, how can we stop the blood bath in Syria?

Solution lies in stopping the influx of terrorists into Syria, stopping financial and military support to them

President al-Assad: Discussing a solution at the beginning of the crisis is very different to discussing it today. From the beginning I have emphasised that a resolution can only be achieved through dialogue, which would lead to solutions that can be implemented through political measures.

The situation today is different; today we are fighting terrorists, 80-90% of them affiliated to Al-Qaeda. These terrorists are not interested in reform, or politics, or legislations. The only way to deal with the terrorists is to strike them; only then can we talk about political steps. So in response to your question, the solution today lies in stopping the influx of terrorists into Syria and stopping the financial, military or any other support they receive.

Le Figaro: Who is supporting them?

President al-Assad: Primarily Saudi Arabia, followed by Turkey and Jordan by streaming the militants into Syria, as well as France, America and Britain.

Le Figaro: Do you have proof that France has provided arms to the terrorists?

President al-Assad: It is evident enough through France’s political stance and its provocative role in the situation as dictated to it by Qatar and other countries.

Le Figaro: Mr. President, are you willing to invite the opposition to come to Syria, to guarantee their safety in order for you all to sit around a table and find a solution?

President al-Assad: In January of this year we launched an initiative that addresses the points you raised and others in order to move forward with a political solution. However, this opposition that you refer to was manufactured abroad – manufactured by Qatar, France and others – it is not a Syrian opposition, and as such it takes orders from its masters who have forbidden it from engaging with this initiative. In addition to the fact that since they were manufactured abroad they lack local public support. Despite all their shortfalls, we did invite them but they did not respond.

Le Figaro: However some did not respond for fear of their security, they fear being imprisoned like Abdul Aziz al-Khayer. Can you provide them with guarantees?

President al-Assad: We have provided guarantees and I have spoken of these political points including guarantees of security to any member of the opposition wanting to come to Syria for the purpose of dialogue. However, they were either not willing to come or maybe they weren’t given permission to come. We have not killed or captured any member of the opposition. Abdul Aziz al-Khayer’s friends are all in Syria – you can see for yourself. Why would we target one of them and ignore the rest? Where is the logic in that?

Le Figaro: How do you explain the French position towards you today, you were once friends with Sarkozy and you enjoyed a friendly relationship with France and visited several times? How do you explain this U-turn?

French policy towards Syria is entirely based on American and Qatari desires

President al-Assad: It wasn’t a friendly relationship. It was clear from the beginning that France, at the request of the Americans, was trying to manipulate Syrian policy. Even the positive shift towards Syria in 2008 was due to Qatari influence, and so was the negative U-turn in 2011. It is very clear that French policy towards Syria is entirely based on American and Qatari desires.

Le Figaro: French Parliamentarians will meet on Wednesday. There is a big debate in France now, with some believing that Hollande has gone too far on this issue. What is your message to the French Parliamentarians before they convene and vote on the strike?

Go back to the principles of the French Revolution, Liberty, Justice, Equality

President al-Assad: A few days ago the French Interior Minister was quoted as saying that “France’s participation is dependent on the US congress,” with no mention to the French Parliament. Allow me then to pose this question to you: To whom does the French government answer to – the French parliament or the US congress? Since 2003, on the back of the invasion of Iraq and its earlier position before the war, France has relinquished its independence and has become a part of American foreign policy. This applies to Chirac after the war on Iraq, to Sarkozy, and today to Hollande.

So the question really is: will the meeting of the French parliamentarians return the independence of France’s decisions back to the French? We hope that this would be the case. Since they will be working in the interests of France, will the representatives of the French people take the side of extremism and terrorism? Will they support those who perpetrated the September 11 attacks in New York, or those who bombed the Metro in Spain? Will the representatives of the French people support those who killed the innocents in France?

How is it possible for them to stand against individuals like Mohammed Merah in France and yet support others like him in Syria? How can France fight terrorism in Mali and support it in Syria? Will France adopt the American model of double standards? How can the parliamentarians convince the French public that their country is secular, yet at the same time it supports extremism and sectarianism in other parts of the world? How can France advocate for democracy but yet one of its closest allies – Saudi Arabia – is still living in medieval times?

My message to the French Parliamentarians is: go back to the principles of the French Revolution that the whole world is proud of: Liberty, Justice, Equality.

Le Figaro: You cited French national interests; if France intervened militarily, would their interests in Syria or the region be targeted?

President al-Assad: I do not know if your interests will be targeted or not, this will depend on the consequences of the war. But most certainly, France will lose its interests. There is hatred and contempt towards French policy, which would inevitably directly affect French interests in the region. In addition, unlike previous times, significant countries in the region have started to look away from Europe towards the East for alternative partnerships where there is mutual respect between countries.

Le Figaro: So you are calling out for rationality and reason?

President al-Assad: For rationality and ethics.

Le Figaro: Are you planning to run for office in the next presidential elections?

President al-Assad: This really depends on the will of the Syrian people at the time. If I feel that there is a strong public desire for to me to run, I will not hesitate and vice versa. We may not have accurate measures at the moment, but we do have strong indications. The strongest indicator is that when you are fighting terrorists from over 80 countries who are supported by Western and Arab states, if your people do not embrace you, you simply cannot carry on. Syria has been resilient for two-and-a-half years this is an important indication of strong public support.

Le Figaro: Mr. President how much are you prepared to fight in this crisis?

President al-Assad: We have two options: we either defend our country against terrorism or we surrender. The history in this region has never known surrender; it has seen many wars, yet it has never and will never surrender.

Le Figaro: So will fight and sacrifice your life for Syria?

President al-Assad: When it becomes a matter of patriotism, we will all fight to defend our country – whether we are citizens or the president, it is not about the individual but rather about the whole nation. What is the point in living if your country is dead?

Le Figaro: Mr. President, do you take responsibility for the mistakes that have been committed including those by the army and the security forces? Do you accept that mistakes have been made?

President al-Assad: Any human being makes mistakes in their work. If you do not make mistakes you are either not human or you do not work. I am a human being and I work. However, when you want to evaluate your mistakes you need to do so in hindsight when the events are behind you and you are able to see the results of your actions. We are currently in the heart of the battle; when it is over, we can assess the results and determine whether we were right or wrong on particular matters.

Le Figaro: Are you confident of winning the battle?

President al-Assad: The history of our region teaches us that when our people defend themselves, they inevitably win. This is not a war against the President or the Government alone, it is a war against the entire country, and we shall be victorious.

Le Figaro: Having said this, your army has lost control over certain areas in the North, East and South. Do you believe that you can regain these areas?

President al-Assad: The issue is not about labeling areas as being under our control or under the control of the militants; there isn’t a single area that the army has planned to enter and not been able to do so. The real challenge is the continuous influx of terrorists from across the borders and the acts they have perpetrated at a social level in the areas they have infiltrated.

Le Figaro: Moratinos, a previous friend of yours, told me few days ago that he cannot understand what is in Bashar al-Assad’s mind, how could he possibly commit such violence in his country.

President al-Assad: There is an analogy that can also be asked here: how could France allow the killing of the terrorists who terrified French citizens? How did the British deal with the riots in Britain last year? Why was the army deployed in Los Angeles in the nineties? Why are other countries allowed to fight terrorism and Syria isn’t? Why is it forbidden for Mohammed Merah to stay alive in France and to kill civilians and yet terrorists are allowed to remain alive in Syria and kill innocent people?

Le Figaro: Mr. President, how has your daily routine changed in terms of leading the country since the beginning of the crisis? Some suggest that after two-and-a-half years Bashar al-Assad is leading the country alone.

President al-Assad: This is what I meant earlier, if the West is against me and so were the Syrian people, if I was alone, how could I conceivably be leading the country? This is illogical. I can continue to lead because of the strength of public support and the strength of the Syrian state. Unfortunately, those in the West do not view this reality objectively.

Le Figaro: Mr. President, a number of French journalists have been held in Syria. Do you have any idea of their situation? Are the Syrian authorities holding them?

President al-Assad: Do you mean that we are holding them?

Le Figaro: They were taken hostage in the North of Syria; do you have information on their fate?

President al-Assad: If they were taken hostage by the terrorists, you will have to ask them. If anyone is arrested by the government for entering the country illegally, they will be taken to court rather than being held in jail. They would face charges according to Syrian law and this would be public knowledge.

Le Figaro: Are you looking to cooperate with France on security issues? This was an area that went well in the past.

President al-Assad: Any cooperation, be it security, military or economic requires political consensus. You cannot maintain security cooperation with any country when there is a conflict of interests.

Le Figaro: When your father passed away, you visited France and were received by President Chirac. Everyone viewed you as a youthful and promising president and a successful ophthalmologist. Today, since the crisis, this image has changed. To what extent have you as a person changed?

President al-Assad: The more imperative question is: has the nature of this person changed? The media can manipulate a person’s image at a whim, yet my reality remains the same. I belong to the Syrian people; I defend their interests and independence and will not succumb to external pressure. I cooperate with others in a way that promotes my country’s interests. This is what was never properly understood; they assumed that they could easily influence a young president, that if I had studied in the West I would lose my original culture. This is such a naïve and shallow attitude. I have not changed; they are the ones who wished to identify me differently at the beginning. They need to accept the image of a Syrian president who embraces his country’s independence.

Le Figaro: Has France become an enemy of Syria?

President al-Assad: All those who support the terrorists financially or militarily are enemies of the Syrian people. Anyone who facilitates the killing of a Syrian soldier, or works against the interests of Syria and her people is an enemy of Syria. I am not referring to the French people since I believe that the French government is working against the interests and will of its people. There is a difference between the concepts of adverse government and adverse nation. The French people are not our enemy but the policy of their government is one that is adverse to the Syrian people.

Le Figaro: Is the French government an enemy of Syria?

President al-Assad: The more adverse the policies of the French government are to the Syrian people, the more the government is an enemy to the Syrian people. The current policies, that we mentioned earlier, adopted by the French leadership are hostile towards Syria. This hostility can only end when the French government readdresses its policies.