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Sky News Collaborates with Idlib Terrorists to Create Syria War Propaganda

By Robert Inlakesh | 21st Century Wire | May 24, 2019

On Thursday night Sky News release a story entitled “Sky News witnesses horrors of Syria’s last rebel outpost”, in which journalist Alex Crawford claims to have been targeted by a Russian tank shelling whilst reporting in Syria’s Idlib province.

The story made headlines and featured in news bulletins across the UK and even the wider world. The problem however, was that the romantic TV drama type report falls flat, as the shameless war propaganda it is, when held up to basic scrutiny and common sense. Watch:

The story made headlines and featured in news bulletins across the UK and even the wider world. The problem however, was that the romantic TV drama type report falls flat, when held up to basic scrutiny and common sense, and merely exposes itself as the shameless war propaganda it is.

To the average viewer of their content, the video may indeed paint Sky’s Alex Crawford as a brave intrepid journalist, battling to deliver the truth about the evil Assad regime, but to those who have any knowledge of the Syrian war, she not only gives enough rope to hang herself with, but perhaps her entire crew.

Let’s begin with talking about just how incredibly ridiculous and propagandist this piece is, using some of Crawford’s own admissions.

Firstly, Crawford admits to being present and inside the de-militarization zone, between the last “rebel” strong hold and the Syrian government. This area was decided upon to become a designated de-escalation zone following the Septemeber 2018 Turkey-Russia brokered ceasefire agreement. Crawford claims that the zone is being constantly violated, which is evidently true, although her being present there in the company of al-Qaeda affiliated militants, battle tanks and well known puppets of extremist propaganda outlets, paints the wrong picture if she was wishing to demonize the Syrian government and its allies.

Secondly, Alex Crawford also admits that all civilians had left the area, indicating what? That she is surrounded by militants, which are evidently the only targets in the area to hit, other than her crew or perhaps others who came with a similar purpose. Not only is this the case, but they decided to enter the area during an armed clash between the two sides, beginning her package with video of a tank that had been terminated by Syrian/Syrian allied forces.

Thirdly, she is in Idlib on the side of the militants during wartime, meaning that she evidently entered Syria illegally and that neither the Syrian government or the Russian forces would have any idea that she is a Western journalist working for Sky News. It is well known, to observers of the Syrian war, that almost all of the terrorist or ‘rebel’ groups have their own propaganda agencies, which consist of several activists and journalists, who also act as part-time combatants and belong to the terrorist organizations.

Then we have her conversation with a well known terrorist propaganda figure, Bilal Abdul Kareem, who has appeared all over Syria with a number of al-Qaeda linked groups, he also interestingly felt comfortable introducing al-Nusra fighters wearing suicide vests on camera to his online audience.

In addition to this, we have perhaps the most ridiculous segment of this story, the interview with Abu Khalid al-Shami, described by a Sky News Aston as a “HTS Commander”. Now firstly, the word commander evidently shows even the most clueless viewer that this man is an active militant. But what does HTS mean? And who are these so called freedom fighters? HTS stands for Hayat Tahrir al-Sham and were formerly known, before their re-naming, as al-Nusra Front, a branch of al-Qaeda in Syria. Hayat Tahrir al-Sham split from al-Qaeda officially in 2016, however they have still worked with al-Qaeda and even Daesh militants in their ranks, many of whom defected and joined this new and trendy “HTS”.

So what can we take away from the latest Sky News report on the evil Syrian Regime and its allies targeting Western journalists?

That Western journalists working on behalf of Sky News, almost certainly, illegally entered Syria with the agenda to demonize the Syrian government and were in the company of a branch of al-Qaeda which went rogue, they then interviewed a terrorist commander. They acted surprised when an area evacuated of all civilians – according to Alex Crawford herself – was attacked during the course of a battle in which terrorists were in action against the Syrian government.

If anyone from Sky News ends up reading this, I hope that next time you make it a little bit more believable that you aren’t on the side of terrorist forces and put a little more thought into your regime change war propaganda against a country ravaged by war, sanctions, displacement and starvation .

May 25, 2019 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , | Leave a comment

The Guardian/Sky News Team Up to Promote Fake News About Fake News

TruePublica | April 27, 2018

This story should make all our readers pretty angry. It’s about how the government picked on two Twitter accounts to help prove the story that automated Putin-bots are wrecking the Skripal/Novichok/Douma gas attack story, about how the Guardian newspaper is helping with this narrative and how Sky News then attack British citizens as Assad apologists and Russian sympathisers for questioning this narrative. They are all linked and it’s all rather pathetic to witness. It goes like this:

On the 19th of April, The Guardian (International Edition) published an article making the assertion that two Twitter accounts were Russian propaganda operations or as they like to put it ‘trolls and bots’ to unleash disinformation on to social media in the wake of the Salisbury poisoning.

The article is written by a rather unsuspecting and maybe, let’s be charitable here, naive Heather Stewart, who went along with the government operative who fed this nonsense to her in the first place. Either that or she and The Guardian is deliberately distributing stories that are fake.

Stewart says “according to fresh Whitehall analysis – Government sources said experts had uncovered an increase of up to 4,000% in the spread of propaganda from Russia-based accounts since the attack,– many of which were identifiable as automated bots. But civil servants identified a sharp increase in the flow of fake news after the Salisbury poisoning, which continued in the run-up to the airstrikes on Syria.

One bot, @Ian56789, was sending 100 posts a day during a 12-day period from 7 April, and reached 23 million users, before the account was suspended. It focused on claims that the chemical weapons attack on Douma had been falsified, using the hashtag #falseflag. Another, @Partisangirl, reached 61 million users with 2,300 posts over the same 12-day period.”

The article went on to promote how “Theresa May highlighted the cyber-threat from Russia in her Mansion House speech earlier this year, telling the Kremlin: “I have a very simple message for Russia. We know what you are doing. And you will not succeed.”

But there’s a problem with this.

The owners of both these Twitter accounts quickly stepped forward and on video too, remonstrating in no uncertain terms that they were, indeed are, in fact, real humans – and weren’t even Russian. They have defended themselves to prove they are definitely not software programs.

The Guardian should have taken this story down – its fake news, but they haven’t.

Ian of @Ian56789 even went on national TV, Sky News to be precise and he was quite definitely miffed about being called an automated Russian bot. How miffed – “Government lies are very transparent and very easy to see and anyone who applies a smattering of critical thinking can see that the government story completely collapses,” says Ian.

Ian’s bio reads: “Advocate of Common Sense & Bill of Rights. Stock Mkt trader. Politics Analyst. Disseminating info. Calling out disinfo in the media. Stay curious!”

Sky News didn’t do their homework when it came to interviewing Ian. Ian took centre stage, went into peak livid mode and lambasted the government citing a Sky News report that confirmed Assad was no nutter and wouldn’t have brought this upon himself just at the point of winning the war. 7 minutes and 37 seconds later, Ian had reeled out more facts and figures about the Syrian war than anyone at Sky News.

The Sky News presenter then went on the attack and got Defence Correspondent Alistair Bunkell to snarl the accusation that @Ian56789 was being anti-British. What is interesting here is that SkyNews then confirmed it was the British government who had pinpointed Ian’s account as a fake ‘Putin-bot’.

Ian went ashen, was beside himself and was in no way going to let some spotty nosed so-called expert representing the lying spies from the establishment get one over on him. Bunkell consistently interrupted our Ian and then brought up a tweet from 2012 – that is one tweet from the 157,000 tweets our Ian has spurted out since 2011.

Ian, clearly suffering from a bit of high blood pressure by now has turned red and is still consistently being attacked and interrupted by both SkyNews presenters.

Ian is rediculously forced to confirm he is not Russian or connected to Russian spies and proudly states “I am an ordinary British citizen” Our Ian has been sharpening the knives and pulls out sabre number one – “my research is based on credible journalists – now, there aren’t any of them on Sky News.” @Ian56789 is locked and loaded, out comes sabre number two – “the only people, journalists that is, that knows whats going on and reporting honestly are Peter Hitchins and Tucker Carlson in the US.”

Sky News presenters now on the back-foot interrupt our Ian again and then try to put the seed of doubt in his story by asking if there was any possibility that Russian propagandists had seeped into his tweet fan base, that frankly, to everyone’s surprise, Ian included, has now suddenly risen to 37,500. Ian whips out his sabre once again, wipes the mainstream media blood still dripping off its deadly edges and goes for one final fatal blow – “What does it mean by being pro-British – does it mean being interested in the 60 million British people or the interests of the clique in the UK government, the cabinet – who are doing things for their own personal benefit and the benefit of their cronies. Theresa May’s husband runs a large hedge fund who has profited heavily from bombing Syria – I speak on behalf on 59.9 million people – I do  not speak for the UK government who do not work for the British people“.

@Ian56789 – THREE, Sky News presenters NIL.

Sky News ends the interview whilst our Ian continues to complain about Theresa May – before he’s turned off and they switch to the all-important news that a foreigner called – Arsène Wenger has retired from a game called football somewhere in the capital.

What is evident here is that the government have clearly, mistakenly, tried to create a cover story for their disastrous Skripal story as the pretext for bombing Syria. Yet again, they had not done their homework.

The Guardian article was published on the 19th, was called out as 100 percent wrong the following day and 8 days later is still being promoted. It’s fake news.

Then, national television attempts to discredit a member of the general public – who is not a trained professional, who is put up as bait to be discredited in the eyes of the general public, family and friends.

Well done Ian. Not afraid to stand up for himself and his beliefs as a British citizen, not afraid that his own government and the mainstream media would attack him live on air in front of millions – and not afraid to air his critical views.

There aren’t enough people like Ian.

These are the false claims of The Guardian Newspaper, the false claims of the government and false claims of Sky News – shame on them. The only one thing that one can say in Sky News’ defence is that they aired it at all. But then again, it was live, they weren’t expecting Ian, because they too, had not done their homework.

Watch fearless Ian56789 take a stand. It might not be pretty but it is real.

April 29, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Russophobia, Timeless or most popular, Video | , , , | Leave a comment

The Skripal case and the misuse of ‘intelligence’

By Alexander Mercouris | The Duran | April 5, 2018

The events of the last few days in the Skripal case provide an object lesson of why in criminal investigations the rules of due process should always be adhered to. The reason the British now find themselves in difficulties is because they have not adhered to them.

This despite the fact that – as they all too often like to remind us – it was the British themselves who largely created them.

The single biggest unexplained mystery about the Skripal case is why it attracted so much attention so quickly.

Within hours of Sergey and Yulia Skripal being found passed out on a bench the British media were feverishly speculating that they had been poisoned by Russia.

This despite the fact that no information at that point existed which warranted such speculation, and despite pleas for the investigation to be allowed to take its course from the police and from the government minister responsible for the police, Home Secretary Amber Rudd (who has ever since been conspicuously silent about the whole affair).

Within three days of Sergey and Yulia Skripal being found passed out on a bench – and before any information linking the incident to Russia had become publicly available – the British government’s COBRA committee was meeting – a fact which caused me incredulity – during which a highly revealing article in The Times of London has now revealed it was already agreed that Russia was “almost certainly” responsible.

A Whitehall source added: “We knew pretty much by the time of the first Cobra [the emergency co-ordination briefing that took place the same week] that it was overwhelmingly likely to come from Russia.” (bold italics added)

“It” of course refers to the chemical agent which poisoned Sergey and Yulia Skripal, with the clear implication that by the date of the first COBRA meeting on 7th March 2018 – three days after Sergey and Yulia Skripal were found in the bench – “it” had already been identified as a Novichok “of a type developed by Russia”.

If what this article says is true – and despite the fact that the article is full of tendentious reporting (of which more below) on this one point I am inclined to believe what it says – then that must mean either (1) that Porton Down is highly familiar with the properties of Novichok agents if it can identify the agent used so quickly; or (2) the British authorities already had “other” information before Porton Down completed its analysis which caused them to think that Sergey and Yulia Skripal were poisoned with a chemical agent “of a type developed by Russia”.

If it was the first then note that Porton Down took no more than three days to identify the poison as a Novichok despite the fact (1) that Novichok agents are not in general use and are supposed to be very rare and there is no known instance of their having been used before (it seems that contrary to previous reports the Kivelidi murder in 1995 in Russia did not involve use of a Novichok); and (2) that confirming Porton Down’s analysis that the poison is a Novichok is taking the OPCW’s experts two weeks.

If it was the second, and the COBRA committee came to its view on 7th March 2018 that Russia was ‘almost certainly responsible’ before Porton Down had identified the poison, then the last few weeks have been an exercise in smoke-and-mirrors, with the British authorities pretending that the reason for their belief in Russian responsibility was that the poison used was a Novichok, whereas in reality they came to that belief for some entirely different reason.

If so then that might partially [explain] why Porton Down and the French scientists were able to identify the chemical agent so quickly.

They were able to identify the poison as a Novichok by the weekend prior to Theresa May’s statement to the House of Commons on Monday 12th March 2018 because they were told in advance what to look for.

I do not know which of these alternatives is true. However, for what it’s worth, I believe it is the second because it is the one which makes most sense in light of the known facts.

That this is the likeliest explanation of what happened finds support from The Times of London article which I cited earlier. It contains this highly revealing claim:

Security services believe that they have pinpointed the location of the covert Russian laboratory that manufactured the weapons-grade nerve agent used in Salisbury, The Times has learnt.

Ministers and security officials were able to identify the source using scientific analysis and intelligence in the days after the attempted murder of Sergei and Yulia Skripal a month ago, according to security sources.

Britain knew about the existence of the facility where the novichok poison was made before the attack on March 4, it is understood……

Security sources do not claim 100 per cent certainty but the source has insisted that they have a high degree of confidence in the location. They also believe that the Russians conducted tests to see whether novichok could be used for assassinations.

The disclosure is the latest part of Britain’s intelligence case against Russia, which has been undermined this week by a series of blunders. (bold italics added)

In other words the entire British case against Russia derives not from identification of the poison as a Novichok but from information about the supposed existence of a ‘secret laboratory’ making Novichok in Russia which British intelligence had obtained – or thinks it had obtained – before the attack took place.

That the British case against Russia is intelligence based and is not based on the fact that the poison used was (allegedly) a Novichok is further shown by one case of manipulation of language and one case of crude editing in some of the things which have been said.

The example of manipulation of language is the constant British harping on the fact that the Novichok allegedly used in the attack is “military grade”.

I am not a chemist or a chemical weapons expert but I cannot see how it is possibly to say such a thing given that no military – not even the Russian military – has apparently ever stockpiled Novichok agents for use as a military weapon. How can one say therefore that any particular sample of Novichok is “military grade” if no military has ever stockpiled or used it?

As for the example of editing, it is one which I admit I previously overlooked but which was noticed by the invaluable Craig Murray, whose commentary on the Skripal case has been nothing short of outstanding.

The editing is of what was said by Porton Down chief executive Gary Aitkenhead. Since it was Craig Murray who noticed it rather than discuss it myself I will link and quote to what Craig Murray has to say about it

It is in this final statement that, in a desperate last minute attempt to implicate Russia, Aitkenhead states that making this nerve agent required

“extremely sophisticated methods to create, something probably only within the capabilities of a state actor.”

Very strangely, Sky News only give the briefest clip of the interview on this article on their website reporting it. And the report is highly tendentious: for example it states

However, he confirmed the substance required “extremely sophisticated methods to create, something only in the capabilities of a state actor”.

Deleting the “probably” is a piece of utterly tendentious journalism by Sky’s Paul Kelso.

I did not notice that the key word “probably” had been deleted from what Aitkenhead had said, and as a result my previous article wrongly quoted his words, saying them not as he had said them but as they had been wrongly edited.

It turns out that even what Aitkenhead actually said – that the Novichok agent would have required “extremely sophisticated methods to create, something probably only within the capabilities of a state actor” is almost certainly wrong.

Here is what Craig Murray has to say about that

Motorola sales agent Gary Aitkenhead – inexplicably since January, Chief Executive of Porton Down chemical weapons establishment – said in his Sky interview that “probably” only a state actor could create the nerve agent. That is to admit the possibility that a non state actor could. David Collum, Professor of Organo-Chemistry at Cornell University, infinitely more qualified than a Motorola salesman, has stated that his senior students could do it. Professor Collum tweeted me this morning.

The key point in his tweet is, of course “if asked”. The state and corporate media has not asked Prof. Collum nor any of the Professors of Organic Chemistry in the UK. There simply is no basic investigative journalism happening around this case.

That the entire British case against Russia depends on intelligence is further shown by a further strange development in the case today.

This is that the British authorities are now apparently claiming that the fact that the poison which was used to poison Sergey and Yulia Skripal was supposedly found on Sergey Skripal’s door knob is the ‘smoking gun’ which points to Russia.

Whether that is so or not – and I share Craig Murray’s deep skepticism about this – the alleged presence of the poison on the door knob cannot be the reason why on 7th March 2018 the British government’s COBRA committee had already come to the conclusion that the attack on Sergey and Yulia Skripal “was almost certainly” the work of Russia.

That is because the theory that Sergey and Yulia Skripal were poisoned when they came into contact with the poison on the door knob only appeared several weeks after 7th March 2018.

All the evidence points to fact that the ‘intelligence’ the British government used to come to the conclusion – reached within hours of Sergey and Yulia Skripal being found passed out on a bench – that the attack on them had been carried out by Russia must have come from a human source.

If the British authorities really do possess what they believe to be a Russian assassin’s manual (see Craig Murray again) then that all but confirms it. How else would such a manual have come into their hands?

If that human source really was able to identify the particular poison used in the attack on Sergey and Yulia Skripal in advance, then that suggests a very well informed source indeed.

That might be because the source does have genuine access to secret information about a top secret Russian assassination programme, in which case the Russian authorities will by now almost certainly know who that source is.

However given the complete absence of any other evidence of a top secret Russian assassination programme I must say I doubt this (as I have discussed elsewhere, the Litvinenko case does not provide such evidence).

The alternative – which of course is what many people believe – is that this whole affair is a provocation, staged by someone who then tipped the British off that Novichok – a poison of “a type developed by Russia” but which can in fact easily be made elsewhere (see above) – had been used, whilst misleading the British by giving them a trail of false leads which appeared to point towards Russia.

The claim that the fact that traces of the poison were found on the door knob is the ‘smoking gun’ which points to Russia to my mind rather supports this second theory.

If this claim was made before the poison was found on the door knob it suggests that the source knew in advance that it was there, which would tend to implicate the source in the attack.

If the source provided the information about the alleged ‘assassin’s manual’ after reports appeared in the British media about the poison being found on the door knob – which by the way is what I suspect – then that strongly suggests that the source is adapting its information to the changing news, which suggests manipulation of the intelligence in order to implicate Russia.

Whatever the case the fact that Novichok was probably used to poison Sergey and Yulia Skripal (we will only know with any measure of certainty when the OPCW reports its tests) is not proof that Russia was involved.

The British have got themselves into a total mess by pretending that it is.

They would have avoided getting into this mess – and avoided being manipulated by whoever is giving them ‘secret’ information, if that is what is happening – if they had instead done what their law and traditions dictate they should have done, which is allowed the criminal investigation to take its course.

It bears repeating that at this stage no suspect has been identified in the case and even the theory that Sergey and Yulia Skripal were poisoned by touching Sergey Skripal’s door knob is pure conjecture.

Once again – as in the Litvinenko case and the Russiagate scandal – the course of a criminal investigation has been corrupted by the misuse of ‘intelligence’.

April 6, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Russophobia | , , | Leave a comment

‘Israel is a vicious racist construct… that claims tribal superiority over the entire rest of the world’

My Anti-Racist Comments on Israel

By Craig Murray – April 29, 2016

I was accused on Sky News of making comments attacking the Jewish tribe. Ripped from its context, the remark appeared so offensive I could not conceive I had ever made it. I find now that in fact I did say it, but in the context of a specific remark by an Israeli minister making a claim that the Israeli Prime Minister leads all Jews worldwide. My remark was part of a post attacking all racism. They could equally well have taken the quote “I wish nothing but good to all people, including all Jewish people” out of the post.

To be absolutely open, I repeat the post here:

Israeli economics minister Naftali Bennett has claimed of Binyamin Netanyahu that “The prime minister is not a private person but the leader of the Jewish state and the whole Jewish world.” Really? Netanyahu is the leader of all the Jews in London, or California, or Ethiopia, who may never have set foot in his state?

This extraordinary remark by Bennett lays bare the fundamental flaw in the very concept of Israel. It is not a modern state, defined as a territory and comprising all the various citizens of whatever descent who live within it. It is rather a vicious racist construct, defined absolutely by race, refusing territorial limits, and with an aggressive theocratic overlay that claims tribal superiority over the entire rest of the world.

Here is a picture of the New Zealand cricket team. In the last twelve months, New Zealand cricket teams have fielded payers including Hamish Rutherford, Peter Fulton, Colin Munro, Dean Brownlie, Ross Taylor, Rob Nicol, Corey Anderson, Grant Elliott, Jimmy Neesham, Kyle Mills, Adam Milne and Mark Craig, not to mention the McCullum brothers. But if I told you that Alex Salmond was the leader of all Scots around the world, including the Black Caps, you would quite rightly call me a nutter.

We would not tolerate the level of racism in any other country that we tolerate from Israel. There was a huge outcry against Labour MP Paul Flynn who dared question whether it was sensible to send a strongly professed Zionist Jew as British ambassador to Israel, but when the Israeli government itself proclaim the political leadership of all Jews all over the world, it is a logical impossibility not to ask the question.

I wish nothing but good to all people, including all Jewish people, but by their increasingly hardline racialist approach, their unceasing encroachment on Palestinian land and their rigorous adoption of all the racist mechanisms of an apartheid state internally, I fear that the window of opportunity for a peaceful future for those Jewish people living in what is currently Israel is closing fast.

It must be universally proclaimed: there is not a single racial group in the whole world from whom worldwide racial claims of political allegiance, or an internal racially based legislative order, are acceptable. Bennett’s remarks are beyond the limit of civilised political discourse.

April 30, 2016 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , | 1 Comment

Four journalists killed covering Egypt clashes

RT | August 15, 2013

Four journalists have been killed in violent clashes which swept Egypt on Wednesday, with a number of the press core suffering serious injuries in the clashes. At least 238 civilians died in total as security forces brutally broke up pro-Morsi rallies.

Egypt has been swept by horrific street violence, showers of gunfire, blazing fires and tear gas as relentless clashes have shaken cities in government attempts to break up the demonstrations.

Among the 238 protesters killed were children, including the 17-year old daughter of a Muslim Brotherhood official. Police stations were torched or stormed by pro-Morsi groups amid the ruthless government suppression.

The violence also took the lives of Sky News cameraman Mick Deane and Dubai-based XPRESS journalist Habeeba Abdelaziz. Both had been covering the pro-Morsi protests in Egypt’s capital which security forces began to ‘disperse’ earlier in the day.

Deane, 61, was shot as he was documenting the turmoil in Cairo. Despite receiving medical treatment for his injuries he died shortly afterwards, according to a statement from Sky.

“He was an astonishingly good cameraman, took some brilliant pictures,” said John Ryley, head of Sky News.
Habeeba Abdelaziz was a 26 year old Egyptian reporter from Dubai, who worked for XPRESS – a ‘sister’ publication to the country’s Gulf News.

“It’s hard to believe she’s gone. She was passionate about her work and had a promising career ahead,” XPRESS Deputy Editor Mazhar Farooqui told Gulf News, commenting that the entire team was in a state of shock.

Abdelaziz had been covering protests near Cairo’s Rabaa al-Adawiya Mosque, which has been the site of one of the largest protests for over a month, and a subsequently heavy-handed crackdown by governmental security forces. They reclaimed the area late on Wednesday.

The third journalist killed was Egyptian Ahmed Abdel Gawad of Al Akhbar newspaper. He died while covering the clashes at Rabaah al-Adawiya. The Egyptian Press Syndicate, a journalist union, confirmed Gawad’s death, but did not provide any details.

The fourth reporter to have been confirmed killed is photojournalist Mosab El-Shami Rassd of the news website (RNN), an alternative pro-Islamist media network, Ahram online reports. The agency wrote that he “was killed by the hand of betrayal while covering the Rabaa massacre at the hands of those who executed the coup,” wrote the network on its Facebook page.

Reuters photojournalist Asmaa Waguih also suffered serious injuries after being shot in the leg during protests. Shortly afterwards, she was moved to the international medical center to receive treatment. The Committee to Protect Journalists has released a statement on the issue, saying that the group condemned the killing of Sky News cameraman Mick Deane, prior to hearing of the second death.

“We call on Egyptian authorities to issue clear orders to security forces to respect the right of journalists to work freely and safely while covering events in Cairo and the rest of the country,” said CPJ Deputy Director Robert Mahoney.

“The killing of Mick Deane underscores the urgent need for such action and for all sides to show restraint and allow the media to do their job. The authorities must investigate all attacks on journalists and hold those responsible to account,” he said.

Other journalist were also treated for wounds. An AP photographer was hit in the back of the neck by two birdshot pellets, while Al Jazeera claims its cameraman Mohammed al-Zaki was shot in the arm. In addition, Paris-based Reporters Without Borders says that Tarek Abbas — a reporter for local Al-Watan newspaper sustained gunshot wounds to his leg and eye; and photographer Ahmad Najjar was wounded in the arm.

Approximately a dozen other journalists were arrested or threatened as they tried to document the mayhem: Reuters’ Tom Finn tweeted his own arrest. Daily Beast reporter Mike Giglio also said on Twitter he was arrested alongside two photographers named Mahmoud Abou Zeid and Louis Jammes, stating they had been beaten too.

A state of emergency was declared on Wednesday after Egyptian security forces violently broke up the sit-in camps of Muslim Brotherhood supporters in Cairo. Health Ministry officials say that over 2000 were injured in the nationwide violence, alongside the 278 who were killed including policemen.

“The dead are both from police and civilians,” said the ministry’s spokesman, Hamdi Abdel Karim.

However, Muslim Brotherhood spokesman Gehad El-Haddad claimed that as many as 2,000 people had been killed and 10,000 injured in the police operation.

Security forces succeeded in gaining control of the protest camps by the end of the day after turning the capital into what journalists called “a war zone”. A state of emergency has been declared and curfew imposed in major cities including Cairo, Alexandria and Suez. The curfew is set to last for the next month – or until further notice.

August 15, 2013 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Four journalists killed covering Egypt clashes

Israel Invents Syrian WMD Threat, IDF Commanders Threaten Intervention

By Richard Silverstein | Tikun Olam | July 13, 2012

Syria appears to be entering an even more chaotic and dangerous period in its civil war now that Israeli officials are concocting potential threats that must be addressed by Israeli intervention.  The latest series of stories derives from U.S. and Israeli intelligence circles and suggests that Syria has a “vast stockpile” (Wall Street Journal) or “hundreds of tons” (Rupert Murdoch’s Sky News) of chemical weapons that could fall into the hands of Al Qaeda, Iran’s ayatollahs or God knows who, should Bashar al-Assad’s regime fall.  Naturally, Israel would have to protect its interests and intervene to prevent this from happening:

Hundreds of tonnes of Syria’s stockpile of deadly nerve gas could fall into the hands of terrorist groups if the regime of Bashar al-Assad falls apart amid widening concerns that Israel could go to war to try to stop this ‘Doomsday threat‘.

The fact that this would give Israel a further opportunity to tweak its Iranian enemy and ensure the installation of a pro-Israel puppet regime in Syria would of course be entirely incidental and unintentional.

The Sky News report in particular seems to be pure garbage, claiming to know the locations of all chemical warfare labs in the country plus additional storage sites.  The report provides no attribution or source, not even an anonymous one.  According to Sky, Al Qaeda is not only active in Syria, but has specifically told its member to get their hands on chemical weapons.  Again no quotations or source offered to bolster the claim.  To hear Sky tell it, missiles filled with Sarin and other potent nerve gases are sitting on launching pads waiting either for Assad to launch them or for the rebels to get their fingers on the button.  And of course the rockets can hit “any location in Israel,” the required hysteria inducing phrase harkening back to Saddam’s SCUDs and other visions of Zionist apocalypse.

Here is former Mossad chief Danny Yatom nicely hitting all the grace notes of hasbara interventionism :

Israel is deeply concerned that Assad may deliberately give Hezbollah chemical weapons – or that they could end up in the hands of other terror groups. In either case, this could lead to a regional war, Danny Yatom, the former head of Mossad warned.

“The conventional wisdom should be that we cannot exclude a non-conventional attack on Israel. We would have to pre-empt in order to prevent it. We need to be prepared to launch even military attacks… and military attacks mean maybe a deterioration to war,” he told Sky News.

Though on its face, Yatom is advocating for Israeli intervention, it’s also possible he’s playing the not so subtle game of pressuring the U.S. and its allies to act by threatening to act if they don’t do so first.  The operative thinking would be saying to the Americans: if you don’t do something, we will; since you won’t like how we’ll handle this, you better take care of it yourself.”

Israel seems to be laying down its marker and saying it too has an interest in determining the nature of the next Syrian regime.  Israel will go to very great lengths to ensure it does not have a proto-Iranian regime on its front doorstep, even to the extent of directly intervening.  All of which would be devastating not just for Syria, but for the entire region.  Israeli “intervention” into affairs in Iran, Lebanon and Gaza has greatly destabilized those countries and wreaked general mayhem.  More of this sort of “help” the Middle East does not need.

Here’s more unfounded hysteria on behalf of interventionism:

There are widespread fears that a Gaddafi-style collapse of Syria into chaos, would mean that chemical weapons would spread around the globe.

Yes, of course widespread fears.  So widespread we don’t even have to tell you who specifically is afraid and of what.  People, we’ve seen this movie before and it was a stinker the first time.  Do we need to see it again to know just how bad the sequel is?  The original was called Bush Brings You Iraqi WMD.  Remember those mushrooms clouds Condi Rice pictured for your visual delectation?  Isn’t it a bit like having déjà vu all over again, to paraphrase Yogi Berra?

No less a Hero of Zion than Yair Naveh, IDF deputy chief of staff, is also getting into the act:

Major general Yair Naveh, the deputy chief of staff of the Israeli Defence Force, recently warned a private congregation at a Jerusalem synagogue that Syria’s chemical weapons posed a mortal threat to the Jewish State.

“As for Syria, we all hear the news … (if)  Syrians … behave this way to their people it is clear … how they will behave towards us – to our sons – when they get the opportunity against us, with the largest chemical weapons arsenal in the world, with missiles and rockets that cover all of Israel”.

Naveh is also quoted more extensively in this AFP article.  If the name sounds familiar, this is the same Yair Naveh who ordered the execution of unarmed Palestinians in contravention of Israeli Supreme Court rulings.  News of which was leaked by Anat Kamm to Uri Blau, all of which landed both of them in court (and her in prison), while Naveh earned a promotion for his trouble.

Though the WSJ is also a Murdoch media trophy, it has slightly higher standards and actually notes how problematic this entire issue can be:

Because of the faulty intelligence about Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction that were used to justify the Iraq war, U.S. officials are extremely cautious about using reports of Mr. Assad’s chemical stockpiles to support military intervention.

But note that this is precisely what the WSJ, Sky, and similar media reports are doing: ratcheting up pressure for regime change.  The war hawk camp in the Obama administration makes no bones about this and beats the drums of war using every available weapon to do so:

“The regime has a plan for ethnic cleansing, and we must come to terms with this,” the first U.S. official said. “There is no diplomatic solution.”

But the statement simply has no basis either in fact or even in fantasy.  But “ethnic cleansing” does have such a nice genocidal ring to it.  Just the thing to rouse the quiescent world from its moral slumber.

Unnamed “opposition leaders” (and you know how reliable those folks have been lately) further buttress the ethnic cleansing meme:

Opposition leaders maintain there are increasing indications that the Damascus regime is trying to cleanse strategic areas, such as Hama and Homs, of Sunnis in order to set up an ethnic state that could be defended by the Assads’ Allawite [sic] ethnic minority.

No word on who these opposition leaders are or what the “increasing indications” specifically are.  Of course not.  What do you expect?  Facts, evidence.  C’mon.

To be clear, I harbor no affection for Assad and his regime.  If there was an effective way to end his rule and guarantee the Syrian people would have a genuine representative government–I’d be all for it.  But as it is, Syria is likely to get a domestic version of Ahmad Chalabi, rather than a real Syrian nationalist patriot to run its government.  At least, that’s what I fear will happen if the west and Israel try to cast their typical spell on the country, bringing the “birth pangs of a new Middle East” as Israel did to Lebanon in 2006 (remember Condi’s infamous line?).

July 13, 2012 Posted by | Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , | 1 Comment