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Chlorine ‘likely’ used in alleged Douma chemical attack, no nerve agent – OPCW‘s final report

RT | March 1, 2019

Chlorine was likely used in a chemical attack in Syria’s Douma last April, the OPCW said. The chemical arms watchdog refrained from identifying the party responsible for the incident, despite earlier being granted such powers.

There are “reasonable grounds” to believe that “the use of a toxic chemical as a weapon [took] place on 7 April 2018,” the Fact-Finding Mission (FFM) of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) said.

“This toxic chemical contained reactive chlorine. The toxic chemical was likely molecular chlorine,” according to the report.

The FMM also stated that it “did not observe any major key precursors for the synthesis of chemical weapons agents, particularly for nerve agents such as sarin, or vesicants such as sulphur or nitrogen mustard.”

The OPCW experts came to these conclusions after on-site visits to collect environmental samples, interviews with the witnesses, and analysis of other data.

The chemical incident in Douma just over a year ago was reported by the infamous Western-backed group, the White Helmets, which had been caught red-handed cooperating with terrorists on numerous occasions.

The activists blamed the Syrian government for the attack on its own people, as videos emerged online allegedly showing doctors trying to rescue those affected by toxic substances. Moscow had for weeks issued repeated warnings that the militants were preparing provocations with chemical weapons in the area.

The unverified claims were swiftly picked up by the mainstream media. The US, UK, and France used the alleged attack as a pretext to launch a large-scale missile attack on Syrian government targets, which they said were involved in the production of toxic agents.

They opted to act days before the OPCW was due to arrive in Douma for a fact-finding mission, just one week after the alleged chemical incident.

Chlorine containers from Germany that belonged to militants were later found by the Russian military in the liberated parts of Douma. This was followed by the discovery of a laboratory operated by terrorists, which contained all the equipment needed to produce deadly chemicals.

March 2, 2019 Posted by | False Flag Terrorism | , , , , | Leave a comment

The White Helmets, alleged organ traders & child kidnappers, should be condemned not condoned

By Vanessa Beeley | RT | January 22, 2019

The White Helmets, “volunteers” who reportedly “rescue Syrians from rubble.” Never in history has such a group been so feted by the elite, or received so many awards from institutions acting as extensions of US and UK hegemony.

A recent panel at the UN Security Council in New York revealed the shocking evidence of White Helmet involvement in organ trafficking in Syria. The lucrative trade of human body parts, bones, blood and organs is one of the most protected and hidden harvests of war.

The potential of White Helmet involvement in these nefarious activities raises questions that must be answered. Why were the shocking revelations met by a wall of silence from corporate media present at the panel in New York?

Not one media outlet pursued the subject, preferring to divert onto more comfortable issues that did not challenge the iconization of the White Helmets that has been the default position for virtually all state-aligned media since the establishment of the group in 2013 in Jordan and Turkey.

© Screenshot from the presentation of Maxim Grigoriev

Above is one of the slides from the presentation of Maxim Grigoriev, director of the Foundation for the Study of Democracy, given to the panel and audience at the UNSC in New York, December 2018.

In July 2017, I had interviewed residents of the East Aleppo districts that had been under occupation of the various extremist armed groups and the White Helmets. Salaheddin Azazi was a resident of the Jib Al Qubbeh area (also mentioned in Grigoriev’s presentation).

Azazi went through the details of the November 2016 Nusra Front attack on civilians trying to flee via the Syrian and Russian-established humanitarian corridors which had been spun by the White Helmets into a “regime” bombing raid that resulted in a civilian massacre. It was a complete misrepresentation of reality which was seized upon by corporate media with no fact checking. My full report on that incident and the White Helmet involvement in the massacre and subsequent theft of civilian belongings from the dead and dying is here.

“The bodies of the dead and dying were left unattended for ten hours in the street after the Nusra Front rocket attack that killed 15 civilians. The White Helmets did not help them, they stole their belongings,” Salaheddin Azazi, resident of Jib Al Qubbeh and eyewitness to events on 30.11.2016, said.

Discussing the November 2016 events in Jib Al Qubbeh with residents Salaheddin Azazi and Ammar Al Bakr, July 2017 © Vanessa Beeley

Azazi and another resident, Ammar Al Bakr (on the right, in above photo) described how the White Helmets were the “runners” for the organ traffickers.

“The White Helmet drivers would take the injured or dead bodies to the Turkish border. Many of the injured had light wounds, nothing that needed hospitalization but the bodies would come back without organs,” said Ammar Al Bakr.

“The bodies, dead and alive, would be inspected in the towns on the borders with Turkey before being taken by Turkish vehicles to the hospitals but if the injured civilian was a child or young and strong they would be taken directly to the hospital in Turkey because their organs had greater value,” Azazi told me.

According to both of these witnesses, the bodies were worth $2000 dead and $3000 if alive and this market was dominated by the White Helmet operatives who profited from cross-border organ trafficking.

Other civilians I met in July/August 2017 confirmed the threat of organ theft which hung over them during the almost five-year occupation of East Aleppo districts by the armed groups and their White Helmet auxiliaries. Families spoke to me of hiding their children if they were lightly injured to prevent the risk of them being abducted and taken to one of three hospitals – Omar Abdulaziz, Al Quds and Zarzour – that allegedly specialized in organ theft in East Aleppo, all of which had been taken over by militant gangs early on in the conflict. I was told that “foreign doctors” were operating in these three hospitals and were in charge of organ extraction. In post-liberation Eastern Ghouta, similar stories abounded.

In January 2019, I visited survivors from the Jaysh Al Islam controlled Tawbah Prison in Douma, Eastern Ghouta (known as Repentance Prison). I met with former prisoners in Adra Al Balad who spoke of the torture and violent abuse they had received after being kidnapped from Adra Al Ummaliya in 2013 by Jaysh Al Islam and Nusra Front. Familiar descriptions of the White Helmets were forthcoming:

“Regarding the White Helmets, they are terrorists and Takfiris […] they have nothing to do with Humanity […] when they used to see an injured civilian, they used to finish them off. If you come to “rescue” a man would you slaughter them? The White Helmets and the terrorists are one and the same, they are hand in hand,” said Hassan Al Mahmoud Al Othman, one of the survivors I spoke to about their experiences as captives of Jaysh Al Islam and Nusra Front during the six years that Eastern Ghouta was occupied.

The evidence against the White Helmets is mounting on a daily basis and will only increase as Idlib is liberated or a political resolution is achieved in the last Syrian province effectively controlled by Hayat Tahrir Al Sham (HTS) a rebrand of Al Qaeda.

Despite this, Western corporate media and NATO-aligned think tanks, policy influencers and NGOs are stubbornly sticking to the “volunteer hero” script. The Observer recently collaborated with Reader’s Digest to produce a slick homage to the White Helmets “rescued” from Syria by Israel in July 2018, entitled ‘The inside story of Canada’s dramatic rescue of the White Helmets out of Syria.’ It depicts the volunteer “bankers and barbers” as heroes and downtrodden saints fleeing for their lives. A far cry from the image portrayed of organ thieves, child abductors and bone peddlers by the Syrian people who lived under the White Helmet regime of sectarian violence and exploitative abuse.

The White Helmet involvement in the “red market” (a term used to describe the multi-billion-dollar trade in human body parts, tissue and organs) should come as no surprise. James Le Mesurier, the former private security and “democratization” expert who founded the White Helmets in Turkey and Jordan was also present in Pristina, Kosovo in 1999 when he worked under the direction of the notorious Bernard Kouchner, co-founder of MSF (Medecins Sans Frontieres) and former French foreign minister.

Kouchner’s tenure in Kosovo was plagued by controversy and accusations of involvement in human and organ trafficking masterminded by the Albanian mafia gangs within the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA).

Carla Del Ponte, former chief prosecutor for war crimes in former Yugoslavia, detailed these crimes in her book The Hunt: Me and the War Criminals, which was published in 2008 just after Kosovo declared its independence.

In 2010, an interim report by the Council of Europe vindicated Del Ponte’s claims, which had garnered skepticism and criticism from the NATO-aligned media and spokespeople. Del Ponte persistently complained, at the time, that UN authorities in Kosovo were systematically blocking her investigations into crimes committed by the Kosovo Albanians in the KLA and the rebranded Kosovo Protection Corps (KPC).

James Le Mesurier was responsible for the rebranding of the KLA, linked to Al Qaeda at that stage alongside the Albanian warlords, and their transformation into the Kosovo Protection Corps while they were being accused of running cross-border organ trafficking operations.

A blueprint that Le Mesurier seems to be reproducing with the White Helmets in Syria while attempting to maintain an untarnished White Helmet image, at least in the aligned media and PR circles. In reality, there is an entire billionaire-supported industry of NGOs and influential global transformation institutions protecting the White Helmets’ image.

A network of global carpetbaggers enabling the criminal obfuscation of White Helmet crimes against Humanity and denial of justice to the Syrian people whose accusations against the pseudo humanitarian group are systematically silenced and marginalized by the White Helmet acolytes.

The White Helmets have received an unprecedented number of awards and peace prizes, including the Right Livelihood Award 2016 (RLA), the Atlantic Council Freedom Award 2016, Tipperary Peace Prize 2017, Hollywood Oscar 2017 (one win, one nomination in 2018) and they have been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize for three years running.

According to the RLA website, they “honour and support courageous people and organisations that have found practical solutions to the root causes of global problems”. There is nothing honourable or courageous about the White Helmet crimes against the Syrian people.

The White Helmets have enabled and participated in organ trafficking, one of the deepest root causes of our global problems but the RLA has made no move to retract their award from this group of criminals, thieves and terrorists. They have ignored petitions and statements from groups of peace activists and academics. Instead, in 2018, they published a counter petition signed by 29 former RLA Laureates calling upon all parties to “stop targeting the White Helmets […] in Syria”.

While blaming Russia for the smear campaign against the White Helmets, the petition informs us that “(White Helmet) work is guided by the inherent dignity of human life.” The RLA claims that the evidence against the White Helmets is “unsubstantiated and does not stand up to scrutiny”. One cannot help but wonder; when did they scrutinize the evidence or listen to the huge number of Syrian civilian testimonies that detail the crimes committed by the White Helmets that are most definitely not guided by the inherent dignity of human life?

What all these US Coalition-aligned organizations fail to understand is that Russian media and UN missions do indeed give a voice to the Syrians who are ignored by media in the West. Russia is not the originator of the claims against the White Helmets.

While these organizations, claiming to support peace in Syria and an end to hostility, continue protecting the White Helmets who are responsible for so much of the misery endured by the Syrian people, they forfeit any credibility and become nothing more than a corrupt extension of US supremacism in the region.

Child exploitation, abuse, human trafficking and organ trafficking – which often goes hand in hand with the former – should never be tacitly condoned or covered up and must always be investigated or we have fallen into a moral vacuum from which there is no escape.

I invite all Western media outlets and “peace” promoting institutions to retract their White Helmet accolades and laurels, and to “scrutinize” the evidence before they too are implicated in one of the most heinous crimes ever committed against victims of war.

Vanessa Beeley is an independent investigative journalist and photographer. She is associate editor at 21st Century Wire.

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Organ theft, staged attacks: UN panel details White Helmets’ criminal activities, media yawns

January 22, 2019 Posted by | Corruption, Deception, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

White Helmets, Black Hearts

By Jeremy Salt | American Herald Tribune | January 3, 2019

In 2016 the White Helmets were nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Justin Timberlake thought they should get it. So did Bear Grylls, Ben Affleck, Michael Palin, Daniel Craig, Rowan Williams, Ridley Scott, George Clooney, Sacha Baron Cohen, Vanessa Redgrave and various other artists, writers, and politicians who put their signatures to the petition on the White Helmets web site.

‘Give it to Syria’s White Helmets’ the Guardian, a media mainstay of the terrorist war on Syria from the beginning, implored the Nobel committee. ‘They embody a spirit of civic resistance.’

The actor George Clooney also identified their essential goodness. ‘In a world full of hate these people put on helmets and run towards violence while everyone else is running away from it,’ he said in London when attending a showing of the glowing documentary the White Helmets made about themselves.

‘Where there is no structure in society they are there to protect. First and foremost they are heroes.’

On their website, the White Helmets describe themselves as ‘former tailors, bakers, teachers and other ordinary Syrians’ who had come together to form the ‘Syria Civil Defence’. In fact, Syria has, and has had since the 1950s, a government civil defense organization of the same name, which operates across the country, unlike the White Helmets, which has operated only in ‘rebel’ held areas.

Furthermore, far from being an organization set up by ‘ordinary Syrians’ who saw a need for ‘civil defense’ and decided to fill it, the White Helmets were not even Syrian in origin but the brainchild of a former British intelligence officer. Furthermore, again, they were never financially independent, as they claimed, but were funded from the beginning by the same governments making war on Syria through armed proxies tied to their intelligence services. They were a carefully constructed arm of this war.

The White Helmets were a sustained lie from the start. They were deliberately packaged to give the corporate media the images it wanted, dominated by the White Helmet hero scurrying across a rubble-strewn foreground with a dusty, crying child in his arms. In the background, out of sight but figuratively represented in the wailing of children and the bodies on the street were the architects of these horrors, the ‘regime’ in Damascus and the dictator sitting in his palace.

It was not long before holes began to appear in the narrative. These rescues were not genuine but were being staged for media consumption. Journalists Vanessa Beeley and Eva Bartlett were the first to pick holes in the narrative and the more they picked the more the holes widened, to the point where it was clear that the White Helmets were a scam of the first order.

But they were a scam the governments making war on Syria wanted their people to believe and a scam that the corporate media perpetuated, when the most cursory research would have revealed the lies.

The White Helmets were not just working in ‘rebel-held’ areas, a media euphemism for civilian districts taken over by the most violent terrorist groups on the face of the earth. They were an extension of these groups. They boasted of their affinities on their Facebook pages. They hated the Syrian government with the same fervor as the takfiris. They also reviled the Alawi, the Shia, Christians and Sunni Muslims who fell short of the takfiris’ exacting standards.

Many White Helmets doubled up as ‘first responders’ and takfiri gunmen. They operated completely under the instructions of the takfiris. They took away the bodies of the newly executed for burial and staged chemical weapons attacks as required. As evidence gathered by Russian researchers indicates, they were also involved in the harvesting of body organs from the bodies of wounded civilians.

These activities were all funded by the ‘liberal democracies,’ including the UK, the US, the EU and individual EU governments, including Denmark and Germany, nominally committed to fighting terrorism around the world.

By 2017 the British Foreign Office alone had paid the White Helmets an acknowledged $80 million. Outside money had even come from the Jo Cox Foundation, set up in memory of the British Labor politician, murdered in 2016, to work for a ‘fairer, kinder and more tolerant world.’

The contradictions in western attitudes were exemplified when Raed Saleh, the head of the White Helmets, and the recipient of millions of dollars in US aid, travelled to the US in 2016 to receive a humanitarian award and was turned back at Dulles International Airport in Washington.

Although the Department of Homeland Security never makes its reasons public, Saleh was clearly on a security/terrorist watch list. He had been allowed into the country before but this time he was turned away.

Waiting to greet him, the well-meaning but naïve members of the InterAction NGO alliance donned white helmets in his absence. Unfortunately, they are not likely to see the White Helmets being outed anywhere in the US media.

The Russian Foundation for the Study of Democracy recently compiled evidence based on extensive interviews in Syria with hundreds of witnesses, including former White Helmets and takfiri fighters, physicians and civilians living in areas that had been taken over by takfiri groups.

The interviews indicated that many of the White Helmets were not volunteers as claimed. In East Aleppo men were imprisoned and given time to decide whether to join Jabhat al Nusra or the White Helmets. It had to be one or the other. There was no third option unless saying ‘no’ to both and facing execution can be considered an option.

For some, joining the White Helmets was the only means of survival for themselves and their families but once inside the organization, everyone knew orders had to be obeyed whatever they were.

These orders came from the takfiri groups. A member of Jaysh al Islam’s internal security services told Russian researchers that instructions were delivered to the White Helmets by phone or personal messenger but either way, they were under the full control of Jaysh al Islam.

After eastern Ghouta was taken over by the takfiris it was divided into four sectors. The White Helmets in the district were integrated with the takfiri group assigned responsibility for each sector.

Along with faked chemical weapons attacks, setting up faked ‘regime’ bombings in line with instructions from the takfiri groups was a specialty of the White Helmets media unit. Witnesses gave evidence of bodies being brought from the morgue and the wounded from the hospital in preparation for faked attacks. Wrecked cars would be dragged to the site. The stage having been set with the apparent consequences of a ‘regime’ bombing, tyres and trash would be set on fire and the cameras would begin to roll.

In Douma, the White Helmets constructed barriers, dug trenches and tunnels, and transported fighters, weapons, and ammunition to the front lines. According to witness evidence, they were permanently engaged in preparing battle positions for the takfiris. White Helmet or ‘rebel’ media rooms or centers kept the global corporate media supplied with a steady flow of lies which were eagerly lapped up, no questions asked. The lies included the faked 2018 chemical weapons attack in Douma.

Theft was a common perquisite of being a White Helmet. Money and gold would be stolen from houses and jewelry stripped from the living – usually women – as well as the dead. Senior White Helmet figures enriched themselves, one in Douma buying cars and summer houses.

In the districts, they occupied the takfiris and the White Helmets shared office space. They took over schools and kindergartens. Under the threat of death, teachers in eastern Ghouta were told to send their students to religious schools. Students at the Gaza school in Aleppo were told to seek their education at the mosque.

The most heinous of White Helmet activities was the harvesting of body organs. Statements made to the Russian researchers indicated that organs were being removed in Turkey for transplantation into the bodies of wounded fighters and that the White Helmets and takfiri groups such as Ahrar al-Sham acted as an integrated team throughout the whole process.

The Russian researchers heard extensive prima facie evidence of the wounded being taken away for treatment by the White Helmets and being returned as corpses stripped of their body parts. A doctor in Aleppo gave evidence relating to a driver in Aleppo who weighed about 70 kgs when taken away and about 30-45 kgs when his corpse was returned. He had been cut from his throat to his stomach.

‘The skin almost touched his back,’ the doctor said. ‘I touched him with my hand and understood that there were clearly no organs left.’

In Aleppo the mother of a boy whose organs had been removed was only allowed to see his head and neck. An injured girl was taken to Turkey for ‘treatment’ and her body returned three days later with her internal organs missing. Even a person with a minor injury would be taken away and returned with the stomach cut open and the organs removed. It was understood, according to witnesses, that people taken away for medical treatment by the White Helmets often did not come back alive.

In July, 2018, 429 members of the White Helmets were smuggled out of Syria across the occupied Golan Heights and moved immediately to Jordan. The transfer was facilitated by the government of Israel which had armed the takfiris and given hospital care to their wounded since the beginning of the war. It had also helped and protected them by attacking Syrian military installations and now it was saving their White Helmet enablers from the retribution of the Syrian state and people.

From Jordan, the White Helmets were dispersed among the countries whose governments had supported them. They were quickly whisked away into a life of anonymity, supported by the British, European or American taxpayer. No one would know where they were or who they were so no critical questions could be asked. The truth was being buried with them.

This is a shocking story, of government criminality and media irresponsibility, of which the lies fed to the world about the White Helmets is only part.

The Russian report is a significant addition to the enormous body of prime facie evidence about the real nature of the White Helmets but as anything coming out of Russia is instantly dismissed as ‘fake news’ the corporate media already has a licensed reason to ignore this report.

The caravan of celebrities who moved quickly to capture some of the limelight created by the White Helmets, without asking any questions about what they were actually supporting, without caring as long as some of the spotlight fell on them, will move on in their narcissistic, feckless fashion.

The truth must have dawned on George Clooney by now. Certainly, it would be surprising to see him going ahead with his feature film on the White Helmets unless he intends to show what they were really like behind the lies he and many others swallowed. That’s the story that certainly needs to be told.

January 3, 2019 Posted by | Film Review, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Organ theft, staged attacks: UN panel details White Helmets’ criminal activities, media yawns

By Eva Bartlett | RT | December 25, 2018

Utter silence. That is the sound of Western corporate media days after a more than one-hour-long panel on the White Helmets at the United Nations on December 20.

Journalists were present, so the silence isn’t due to lack of access. And in any case it was live streamed on the UNTV channel, and remains available on Youtube for keen observers to watch.

More likely, the silence is due to the irrefutable documentation presented on the faux-rescue group’s involvement in criminal activities, which include organ theft, working with terrorists — including as snipers — staging fake rescues, thieving from civilians, and other non-rescuer behaviour.

On the panel was one of corporate media’s favourite targets to smear, British journalist Vanessa Beeley, who gave a fact-based lecture on her years of research into the founding, funding and nefarious activities of the White Helmets, research which includes numerous visits to White Helmets centers, countless testimonies from Syrian civilians, and even an interview with a White Helmets leader in Dara’a al-Balad, Syria.

Maxim Grigoriev, the director of the Foundation for the Study of Democracy (a member of the UN’s Global Counter-Terrorism Research Network) spoke at length, detailing some of the over 100 eyewitnesses his foundation has conducted interviews with.

These include over 40 White Helmets members, 15 former terrorists, 50 people from areas where terrorists and WH operated, with another over 500 interviewed by survey in Aleppo and Daraa.

Among testimonies presented by Grigoriev were numerous accounts of the White Helmets’ involvement in organ theft.

A head of nursing in Aleppo is cited as seeing the body of his neighbour who had been taken by the White Helmets to Turkey for “treatment”. “I lifted the sheet and saw a large wound cut from the throat to the stomach… I touched him with my hand and understood there were clearly no organs left.”

Another interviewee said: “A person receives a minor injury, is rescued… and then brought back with their stomach cut open and with their internal organs missing.”

The interviews with civilians, White Helmets and terrorist members themselves put to rest NATO’s and their lapdog media’s explanations that in the White Helmets there are a few bad apples but in general these are humanitarian rescuers.

For example, a Syrian civilian, Omar al-Mustafa, is cited as stating:

“Almost all people who worked in nearby White Helmets centers were al-Nusra fighter or were linked to them. I tried to join the White Helmets myself, but I was told that if I was not from al-Nusra, they could not employ me.”

Still more testimonies detail staged fake rescues and staged chemical attacks. Omar al-Mustafa was cited as stating:

“I saw them (White Helmets) bring children who were alive, put them on the floor as if they had died in a chemical attack.”

The testimonies incriminate not only the White Helmets organization, but also the doctors who, in 2016, Western corporate media fawned over.

According to one interviewee, Mohamed Bashir Biram, his attempt to take his father to a White Helmets affiliated al-Bayan hospital, failed. He said: “Since my father was not a fighter, the doctors in the hospital refused to help him and he died.”

But in 2016, the Western media was praising the same valiant doctors, in their crescendo of war propaganda around Aleppo.

Many other independent journalists have corroborated aspects of what the panelists — also comprising Syrian journalist Rafiq Lotef, and Russian and Syrian Representatives to the UN, Ambassadors Vassily Nebenzia and Bashar al-Ja’afari — described in detail.

In my own visits to eastern Ghouta towns last April and May, residents likewise spoke of organ theft, staged rescues, the White Helmets working with Jaysh al-Islam, while an Aleppo man likewise described them as thieves who steal from civilians, not rescuers.

Copy-paste corporate media silence

Journalists present at the panel were not interested in asking follow-up questions on organ theft, staged rescues, or any of the content presented, unsurprisingly, instead asking questions about other Syrian issues.

A CBS journalist didn’t have a single question about what had just been presented, although CBS has previously repeatedly reported on the White Helmets. But their reporting, like most in corporate media, spun the transparent propaganda that is corporate media coverage of the group.

Four days after the UN panel, to my knowledge, not a single corporate media outlet has covered the event and its critical contents.

This is in spite of the fact that the Western corporate media has been happy to propagandize about the White Helmets for years, and to attack those of us who dare to present testimonies and evidence from on the ground in Syria which contradicts the official narrative.

Russian, Syrian, and Lebanese media did report on the panel, and of course if Western corporate journalists ever do bother to mention it, they will ignore the incriminating evidence presented by panellists and instead accuse Russia of bullying the White Helmets.

Prior to the panel, a number of publications came out with articles echoing one another, and in fact echoing claims already repeatedly uttered about a “Russian disinformation campaign” against the White Helmets.

That’s right, that’s the best they’ve got.

‘Big bad Russia’ tarnishing the pristine image of the White Helmets, a theme rerun ad nauseum over the last year or two, and one which I addressed in early January 2018 when I was under attack for questioning the White Helmets.

In my rebuttal to a mid-December 2017 Guardian smear, I pointed out that it was not Russia which began looking into the White Helmets’ affiliations, funding, and role in the propaganda war, but two independent North American researchers.

Canadian journalist Cory Morningstar in September 2014 exposed the role of the New York based PR firm, Purpose Inc, in marketing campaigns for the White Helmets.

And as I wrote, “In April 2015, American independent journalist revealed that the White Helmets had been founded by Western powers and managed by a British ex-soldier, and noted the “rescuers” role in calling for Western intervention—a No Fly Zone on Syria.”

These, and the subsequent numerous investigations by Vanessa Beeley, including on the ground in Syria, taking countless testimonies of Syrian civilians on the matter of the White Helmets, far precede any Russian media reporting on the group.

That Russian media and bodies have since done their own investigations does not equate to a “disinformation campaign”, but rather doing the job corporate media are clearly incapable of, and unwilling to do.

Why haven’t the media written about the panel, or as per the corporate media norm, issued yet more smears against panelists?

They haven’t because they are cornered, and while they can always try their standard juvenile character smears and libel, they cannot refute the facts, the countless testimonies which corroborate yet still more testimonies taken by independent journalists over the years.

Or as Ambassador Nebenzia said:

“We understand why #WhiteHelmets are being defended by #Western capitals. They do not hide that they provided substantial financial support to this organization and instrumentalized it to pursue political goals under humanitarian cover. It’s logical to protect your asset.”

Last week, it came out that German reporter for Der Spiegel, Claas Relotius, winner of the German Reporter Award 2018, had falsified a number of his articles. One article on the fakery noted Relotius had, “confessed to have fabricated at least 14 of 55 articles,” including a “story about a Syrian boy who believed he triggered the civil war in the country with his graffiti, an article that won the German Reporter Prize just three weeks ago but which was made up.”

Former German journalist, Udo Ulfkotte, in 2014 reached his tipping point and admitted to having for years lied for Western, anti-Russia interests, admitting to making propaganda against Russia after having been bribed by billionaires, and by the Americans, to “not to report exactly the truth.”

As 2018, a year of staggering corporate media fake news, draws to a close, so do the last vestiges of credibility of media lauding the White Helmets.

Given the scandalous depth of their lies, it is unlikely corporate journalists will have an Ulfkotte moment and admit to their manifold deceptions.

But it doesn’t really matter, because more and more, Western corporate media, and the propaganda construct known as the White Helmets they support, are becoming irrelevant.

Eva Bartlett is a freelance journalist and rights activist with extensive experience in the Gaza Strip and Syria. Her writings can be found on her blog, In Gaza.

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December 27, 2018 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , | 1 Comment

White Helmets Engaged in Looting, Human Organ Trafficking in Syria – Watchdog

Sputnik – 21.12.2018

Members of the organization White Helmets were engaged in the forced removal of human organs as well as theft and corruption in Syria, according to evidence presented at the United Nations by Foundation for the Study of Democracy Director Maxim Grigoriev on Thursday.

“People evacuated by the White Helmets often did not come back alive,” Grigoriev said quoting a witness who lives in an area where the White Helmets operated. “For example, a person receives a minor injury, is rescued, evacuated and then brought back with their stomach cut open and with their internal organs missing.”

Grigoriev noted that according to multiple witnesses, including members of the White Helmets, the organization was also involved in looting wounded individuals in Syria, especially women, as well as plundering stores and damaged buildings.

“Sometimes we came to help, entered a flat, and, if we found gold or jewelry, seized it,” Grigoriev quoted a White Helmets member in Douma. “In one flat, there was a woman who felt ill, we came to help her, found some gold and stole it.”

Members of the White Helmets in Saqba also reported about the extensive system of corruption and theft among sponsors in the organization. Referring to the information provided by a White Helmets member, Grigoriev said the leaders of the organization took for private gain parts of donations they received.

Moreover, the White Helmets constructed the fortifications for terrorists and illegal armed groups in Syria, the Foundation for the Study of Democracy revealed.

“There is overwhelming evidence which proves that the White Helmets centers were permanently engaged in building fortifications for battle positions for terrorist and illegal armed groups who had been supplying them with water and food and evacuating wounded terrorists from the front line,” Grigoriev reported on Thursday on the research completed by the Foundation in Syria.

Grigoriev said that a White Helmets member in Douma told him the group constructed earthen mounds, dug trenches, transport fighters, weapons and ammunition for the fighters.”

“For instance, we dug trenches in the towns of Mesraba and al-Shaifuniya and constructed an earthen mound,” Grigoriev quoted the White Helmets member as saying.

The report on the activities of the White Helmets was prepared using information provided by more than 100 Syrian eyewitnesses, including members of the organization, Syrian Civil Defence, former fighters from illegal groups and terrorist groups, and people living in the areas controlled by terrorists where White Helmets conducted their activities.

The White Helmets, a non-governmental organization that operates in parts of rebel-controlled Syria and Turkey, claims to be a group of volunteer rescue workers.

Both Damascus and Moscow have accused the White Helmets of staging several provocations involving chemical weapons to influence public opinion and justify foreign intervention in Syria.

In August, US State Department Spokesperson Heather Nauert said that Washington would continue to provide life-saving and needs-based humanitarian assistance to vulnerable Syrians and support for the White Helmets operating in Syria.

December 21, 2018 Posted by | Deception, War Crimes | , | 2 Comments

Canada Accepts Dozens of White Helmets Evacuated from Syria – Reports

Sputnik – 29.10.2018

Canada has accepted 117 White helmets along with their family members, evacuated earlier in July from war-torn Syria with the help of Israel, CBC News reported Sunday.

In late July, over 400 White Helmets’ activists and their families were evacuated from Syria at the request of Canada, European countries, and the United States amid a full-scale offensive by Syrian government troops against militants and terrorists in country’s southwestern regions.

According to CBC News, the now-former White Helmets will be settled in four provinces, including British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Ontario and Nova Scotia. The international community reportedly expected to remove up to 1,200 evacuees, including first responders and their families. In the end, only 422 Syrian White Helmets and their families managed to get out last July.

CBC News said, citing evacuees, that hundreds of White Helmets remain in Syria.

Canada’s Foreign Ministry said earlier that Ottawa was in the process of resettling a group of White Helmets members who had to leave Syria, stressing that security screening was completed before members of the Syrian civil defense group can fly to Canada as refugees.

According to Syrian President Bashar Assad, the group is affiliated with al-Qaeda terrorist organization. The Russian permanent mission to the European Union said earlier that the evacuation of the White Helmets from Syria proves that the states organizing the operation were seeking to cover up the provocative actions of the self-proclaimed humanitarian group.

Damascus and Moscow have accused the White Helmets of helping to stage a chemical attack in Syria’s Eastern Ghouta town in April. That attack prompted the United States, the United Kingdom and France to launch more than 100 missiles on multiple targets in Syria one week later.

In late September, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Vershinin said that militants as well as White Helmets continued their preparations for plotting chemical attacks to discredit the Syrian government’s troops.

Lebanon’s Al-Mayadeen television said Thursday that Militants and the White Helmets group have transported unidentified poisonous materials from the city of Jisr al-Shughur to the settlement of Khirbat al Amud, both located in the rebel-held province of Idlib.

Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem called Saturday the White Helmets the main tool for staging chemical attacks, adding that this was a terrorist organization created with the financial aid of the UK intelligence.

Muallem reiterated that Syria had destroyed all its chemical weapons arsenals and had not used them.

October 28, 2018 Posted by | Deception, False Flag Terrorism, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , | Leave a comment

Syria Update: Creeping Partition

By Peter Ford | October 23, 2018

The September crisis over Idlib was brought to a conclusion by the Russian Turkish agreement to create a partially demilitarised border strip. This should have been implemented by 16 October but hasn’t.

Idlib

Some armed groups have pulled back their heavy weapons from the 15-20 km wide 250 km long strip but others haven’t, while the groups internationally categorised as terrorist, including Hayat Tahrir Ash Sham (HTS), Hurras Ad Deen, and the Turkmenistan militia, have not vacated the area as the Turks promised. Russia was supposed to be allowed into the area to monitor but isn’t. In blatant violation of the ceasefire some of the groups are shelling neighbouring government-controlled areas including the outskirts of Aleppo and northern Lattakia.

The Turks claim all is well. The Russians, putting a brave face on a very unsatisfactory situation, call for patience. The reality appears to be that the Russians don’t think the Syrian government forces are strong enough to overcome the approximately 90,000 jihadi fighters in Idlib, many dug in in areas of difficult terrain, and all promised air cover by the US if Asad advances.

It has barely been noticed that the US has moved the goalposts on what it gives itself permission to do in Syria. The new US envoy for Syria, James Jeffrey, a former diplomat emerging from that neocon haven, the Washington Institute for the Near East Policy, stated explicitly recently that the US no longer felt itself bound to bomb Syria only if Asad used chemical weapons: henceforth the US would bomb ‘if Asad advances. Period’. (In such an eventuality it would be interesting to see how the British government went about following suit, although it is worth noting that its much contested legal opinion which was offered in April (attached) would startlingly licence the government to bomb under any circumstances whatever as long as it claimed to be acting for humanitarian reasons.)

Some claim that the standoff and emergence of an effectively separate entity in the North could force the Syrian government to make concessions at the negotiating table. This is wishful thinking. The Syrian government would never regard recovery of a lost province as a fair price for surrendering power. That being the case what we are witnessing appears to be the beginning of the emergence of a safe haven for terrorists under the guardianship of the Turks and the air umbrella of the Western powers: a replay of US/Saudi support for the Taliban in the days when removing the Russians from Afghanistan seemed like a good idea.

The North East

The dismemberment of Syria continues also in the North East (Al Hasakeh province and part of Deir Ez Zor province) which is under the joint control of the Kurdish-dominated SDF (Syrian Democratic Forces) and the US. Here too the US recently moved the goalposts virtually unnoticed, Secretary of Defence Mattis declaring that the purpose of the US forces’ presence was to combat Iran, which has no presence whatever in the North East. The US barely even pretends now that the purpose is to defeat the lingering remnants of ISIS, a task which the Syrian forces could handle easily if they were allowed to enter the parts of Deir Ez Zor and Hasakeh provinces where ISIS lurks effectively under US protection. The US plan appears to be to condition the withdrawal of the US presence on the withdrawal of that of the limited number of Iranian military advisers in Syria and of the rather larger number of Iranian–funded militia forces, considered essential to its security by the Syrian government. As many have pointed out this is a recipe for another open-ended US commitment to a military presence in the Middle East.

When the US-led coalition does move against ISIS remnants it is careless of civilian casualties: 62 civilians were killed this week in an air strike on two villages in Deir Ez Zor. This being the conveniently anonymous ‘coalition’ we have no way of knowing if the RAF was involved.

Hopes had been aroused that the US might pull out because of the costliness of propping up local civilian services, which for Trump is anathema. The arrival of 100 million dollars from Saudi Arabia in the Pentagon’s bank account last week (totally unconnected of course with the current predicament of Crown Prince Mohamed Bin Salman) may have upset the Turks, unhappy to see another Kurdish statelet emerging, but it has eased the financial burden of de facto US occupation.

Al Tanf

The US had given some hints that it might be willing to draw back from the Al Tanf enclave it controls with UK military support near the apex of the Syrian, Jordanian and Iraqi borders. Displaced persons started to go home from the jihadi-infested Rukban camp which lies within the Al Tanf perimeter. The Syrian government is offering to facilitate more returns but will not acquiesce in US control over sovereign Syrian territory. Hopes of US departure appear to have been dashed, however, as it becomes clearer that the new US strategy for Syria requires the US to keep all its assets in Syria, however vulnerable they would be in the event of major conflict, and however much they complicate the humanitarian situation, as potential bargaining chips to force the Syrian government to make concessions in terms of relinquishing Iranian military protection, preparatory to a reinvigorated Geneva negotiating process with a weakened Asad which would deliver the yearned for ‘transition’ away from him.

Return of refugees and reconstruction

With most territory clawed back and fighting now virtually on pause, the Syrian government is working hard to resettle the internally displaced and encourage the return of refugees. Syria’s enemies have discouraged return but many Syrians have voted with their feet: 50,000 have already returned from Lebanon in 2018. Much has been made by those enemies of Law 10 which required property owners to register their claims, an essential step before large scale reconstruction of heavily damaged districts could proceed and new housing be allocated. This was disingenuously portrayed as a land grab by the government. Reports suggest that registration has been put on hold.

Funds for reconstruction remain elusive. The Western powers continue to block any international development assistance as long as the holy grail of ‘transition’ has not been attained.

Meanwhile ordinary Syrians continue to groan under the handicaps of sanctions and government red tape.

Israel

Israel’s mis-step in causing the shooting down of a Russian plane has been heavily punished. Syria has now taken delivery of several Russian S-300 anti-aircraft systems, as well as aircraft communication jamming equipment. As a result Israel, which carried out over 200 air raids on Syria before the incident, has not carried out a single one since, possibly pending delivery by the US of more stealth fighter bombers. The US has categorised Russia’s delivery of the new (defensive) systems as ‘destabilising’ ….

Farewell Staffan de Mistura

The UN envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, has announced his intention to step down in November, citing ‘personal reasons’. His great achievement in the eyes of Western powers was to keep the Geneva process alive when it was clearly moribund. Without Geneva they would lose the commitment to ‘transition’ which Russia conceded in a moment of great weakness in 2014. The Geneva process has been void of significance, however, for years. The besuited opposition representatives who attend the Geneva discussions are transparently stooges of the Western and Gulf powers and have absolutely no influence over the Islamist battalions, who have not the slightest interest in the refining of the constitution or sharing power and who listen only to Turkey, which controls their logistics. The only meaningful negotiation takes place between Turkey and Russia.

White Helmets

The government declined to answer Baroness Cox’s parliamentary question as to their plans for receiving White Helmets who fled Syria via Israel in July, citing the protection needs of this particularly ‘vulnerable’ category of refugee, only to leak details via the Daily Telegraph a few days later. It transpires that the country can look forward to receiving 28 of these ‘heroes’ with their families. Meanwhile a White Helmets local leader who remained behind, giving the lie to those who claimed they would all be rounded up, told a Western journalist that half of the evacuees were not White Helmets at all but jihadis masquerading as such.

Peter Ford was a British Ambassador to Syria; he is now an important, independent commentator on the dirty war.

October 24, 2018 Posted by | Illegal Occupation | , , , , | 1 Comment

The White Helmets Ride Again

How easy it is to give awards to terrorists

By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • October 23, 2018

I am often asked to explain why countries like Iran appear to be so aggressive, involving themselves in foreign wars and seeking to create alliances that they know will provoke the worst and most paranoid responses from some of their neighbors. My response is invariably that perceptions of threat depend very much on which side of the fence you are standing on. Saudi Arabia and Israel might well perceive Iranian actions as aggressive given the fact that all three countries are competing for dominance in the same region, but Iran, which is surrounded by powerful enemies, could equally explain its activity as defensive, seeking to create a belt of allies that can be called upon if needed if a real shooting war breaks out.

The United States and Israel are, of course, masters at seeing everything as a threat, justifying doing whatever is deemed necessary to defend against what are perceived to be enemies. They even exercise extraterritoriality, with Washington claiming a right to go after certain categories of “terrorists” in countries with which it is not at war, most particularly Afghanistan, Yemen and Somalia. Israel does likewise in its attacks on Lebanon and Syria. Both Tel Aviv and Washington have regularly crossed the line drawn by international legal authorities in terms of what constitutes initiating a “just” or “legal” war, i.e. an imminent threat to use force by a hostile power. Neither Israel nor the United States has really been threatened by an enemy or enemies in the past seventy years, so the definition of threat has been expanded to include after-the-fact as with 9/11 and potential as in the case of Israel and Iran.

The “which side of the fence” formulation has also had some interesting spin-offs in terms of how so-called non-state players that use violence are perceived and portrayed. Nearly all widely accepted definitions of terrorism include language that condemns the “use of politically motivated violence against non-combatants to provoke a state of terror.”

It is quite easy to identify some groups that are unambiguously “terrorist.” Islamic State in Syria (ISIS) and its various affiliates fit the definition perfectly, but even in that case there is some ambiguity by those state actors who are ostensibly pledged to eradicate terrorists. There have been credible claims that the United States has been protecting the last enclaves of ISIS in order to maintain its “right” to stay in Syria, allegedly based on the stated objective of completely destroying the group before withdrawal. As long as ISIS is still around in Syria, Washington will have an admittedly illegal justification for doing likewise.

There are two notable groups that should be universally condemned as terrorists but are not for political reasons. They are the Mujaheddin e Khalq (MEK), Iranian dissidents that are based in Paris and Washington, and the so-called White Helmets who have been active in Syria. MEK is particularly liked by Israel and its friends inside the Beltway because it retains resources inside Iran that enable it to carry out assassinations and sabotage, and if it is only Iranians that are dying, that’s okay.

MEK has been on the State Department roster of foreign terrorist organizations since the list was established in 1997. Its inclusion derives from its having killed six Americans in the 1970s and from its record of violence both inside and outside Iran since that time. The group was driven out of Iran, denied refuge in France, and eventually armed and given a military base by Iraq’s leader Saddam Hussein. Saddam used the group to carry out terrorist acts inside Iran. MEK is widely regarded as a cult headed by a husband and wife team Massoud and Maryam Rajavi. Its members were required to be celibate and there are reports that they are subjected to extensive brainwashing, physical torture, severe beatings even unto death, and prolonged solitary confinement if they question the leadership. One scholar who has studied them describes their beliefs as a “weird combination of Marxism and Islamic fundamentalism.” Like many other terrorist groups MEK has a political wing that operates openly referred to as the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), which is based in Paris, and another front organization called Executive Action which operates in Washington.

MEK was regarded as a terrorist group until 2012, when it was taken off the Special Designation list by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. It was removed because multi-million dollar contracts with Washington lobbying firms experienced at “working” congress backed up by handsome speaking fees had induced many prominent Americans to join the chorus supporting NCRI. Prior to 2012, speaking fees for the group started at $15,000 and went up from there. Former Pennsylvania governor Ed Rendell reported more than $150,000 in honoraria. Rudy Giuliani has been paid generously for years at $20,000 per appearance for brief, twenty-minute speeches. Bear in mind that MEK was a listed terrorist group at the time and accepting money from it to promote its interests should have constituted material support of terrorism.

The group’s well-connected friends have included prominent neocons like current National Security Advisor John Bolton and ex-CIA Directors James Woolsey, Michael Hayden and Porter Goss as well as former Generals Anthony Zinni, Peter Pace, Wesley Clark, and Hugh Shelton. Traditional conservatives close to the Trump Administration like Newt Gingrich, Fran Townsend and Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao are also fans of NCRI. Townsend in particular, as a self-proclaimed national security specialist, has appeared on television to denounce Iran, calling its actions “acts of war” without indicating that she has received money from an opposition group.

MEK’s formula for success in removing itself from the terrorism lift involved paying its way through a corrupt political system. More interesting perhaps is the tale of the White Helmets, who have just been given the 2019 Elie Wiesel Award by the National Holocaust Museum, with the citation “These volunteer rescue workers have saved lives on all sides of the conflict in Syria. Their motto is ‘To save one life is to save all of humanity.’”

The White Helmets have been praised by those who hate the government of President Bashar al-Asad in Syria and want to see it removed because of its role as a leading element in the propaganda campaign that seeks to instigate violence or use fabricated information to depict the Damascus government as guilty of slaughtering its own citizens. The propaganda is intended to terrorize the civilian population, which is part of the definition of terrorism.

Favorable media coverage derives from the documentary The White Helmets, which was produced by the group itself and tells a very convincing tale promoted as “the story of real-life heroes and impossible hope.” It is a very impressive piece of propaganda, so much so that it has won numerous awards including the Oscar for Best Documentary Short last year and the White Helmets themselves were nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. More to the point, however, is the undeniable fact that the documentary has helped shape the public understanding of what is going on in Syria, describing the government in Damascus in purely negative terms.

Recently, with the Syrian Army closing in on the last White Helmet affiliates still operating in the country, the Israeli government, assisted by the United States, staged an emergency humanitarian evacuation of the group’s members and their families to Israel and then on to Jordan. It was described in a BBC article that included “The IDF said they had ‘completed a humanitarian effort to rescue members of a Syrian civil organization and their families’, saying there was an ‘immediate threat to their lives.’ The transfer of the displaced Syrians through Israel was an exceptional humanitarian gesture. Although Israel is not directly involved in the Syria conflict, the two countries have been in a state of war for decades. Despite the intervention, the IDF said that ‘Israel continues to maintain a non-intervention policy regarding the Syrian conflict.’”

All of the Israeli assertions are nonsense, including its claimed “humanitarianism” and “non-intervention” in the Syrian war, where it has been bombing almost daily. The carefully edited scenes of heroism under fire that have been filmed and released worldwide conceal the White Helmets’ relationship with the al-Qaeda affiliated group Jabhat al-Nusra and its participation in the torture and execution of “rebel” opponents. Indeed, the White Helmets only operate in rebel held territory, which enables them to shape the narrative both regarding who they are and what is occurring on the ground.

The White Helmets travelled to bombing sites with their film crews trailing behind them. Once at the sites, with no independent observers, they are able to arrange or even stage what is filmed to conform to their selected narrative. Exploiting their access to the western media, the White Helmets thereby de facto became a major source of “eyewitness” news regarding what was going on in those many parts of Syria where European and American journalists were quite rightly afraid to go, all part of a broader largely successful “rebel” effort to manufacture fake news that depicts the Damascus government as engaging in war crimes directed against civilians, an effort that has led to several attacks on government forces and facilities by the U.S. military. This is precisely the propaganda that has been supported both by Tel Aviv and Washington.

Perhaps the most serious charge against the White Helmets consists of the evidence that they actively participated in the atrocities, to include torture and murder, carried out by their al-Nusra hosts. There have been numerous photos of the White Helmets operating directly with armed terrorists and also celebrating over the bodies of execution victims and murdered Iraqi soldiers. The group’s jihadi associates regard the White Helmets as fellow “mujahideen” and “soldiers of the revolution.”

So, the National Holocaust Museum, which is taxpayer funded, has given an apparently prestigious award to a terrorist group, something which could have been discerned with even a little fact checking. And the museum also might have been sensitive to how the White Helmets have been used in support of Israeli propaganda vis-à-vis Syria. Perhaps, while they are at it, the museum’s board just might also want to check out Elie Wiesel, for whom the award is named. Wiesel, who was a chronicler of Jewish victimhood while persistently refusing to acknowledge what Israel was doing to the Palestinians, notoriously mixed fact and fiction in his best-selling holocaust memoir Night. Ironically, the award and recipient are well matched in this case as mixing fact and fiction is what both Elie Wiesel and the White Helmets are all about.

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is www.councilforthenationalinterest.org, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is inform@cnionline.org.

October 23, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, War Crimes | , , | Leave a comment

Russia swats away Israeli bluster on Syria

By M K Bhadrakumar | Indian Punchline | July 25, 2018

The Russian version of the visit by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Chief of Staff General Valery Gerasimov to West Jerusalem on July 23 became available, finally, on Wednesday in the nature of a terse TASS report quoting a ‘military-diplomatic’ source in Moscow as saying that the visiting Russian officials “looked into the tasks of completing the anti-terrorist operation in Syria’s South.”

An unnamed Israeli official had earlier floated a story that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu did some tough talking with Lavrov and “rebuffed” a Russian offer to create a 100-kilometre buffer zone adjacent to Golan Heights. Netanyahu reportedly insisted that he won’t be satisfied with anything short of Iran ending its presence in Syria conclusively.

The first indication that the talks didn’t go well came when Israel shot down a Syrian jet on July 24 in Quneitra bordering Golan. It was a calculated act of belligerence by Israel. (The Islamic State fighters who are present in the region have since released the photograph of the wreckage and the mutilated body of the Syrian pilot.)

The TASS report today punctures the Israeli version that the two Russian officials were deputed by President Vladimir Putin specially to discuss with Netanyahu the future of Iranian presence in Syria. (It now transpires that the Russian officials were on a tour of Israel, Germany and France.) The Israeli bravado can only be seen as a desperate ploy to cover up its humiliating defeat in Syria with the terrorist groups that were its proxies surrendering lock, stock and barrel in Daraa and Quneitra to the Syrian-Russian forces – especially the hasty exfiltration of the controversial group known as the White Helmets to Jordan via Golan Heights with the logistical help from the Israeli military.

Quite obviously, Moscow does not want to get entangled in the Israel-Iran tensions. This is also the American assessment of the Russian thinking, as articulated by the Director of the National Intelligence Agency Daniel Coats on Thursday:

“We have assessed that it’s unlikely Russia has the will or the capability to fully implement and counter Iranian decisions and influence (in Syria.) Russia would have to make significantly greater commitments [in Syria] from a military standpoint, from an economic standpoint. We don’t assess that they’re keen to do that.”

Nonetheless, the Israeli propaganda has gone overboard in attempting to create a wedge between Russia and Iran. (Read a fine piece, here, by Moon of Alabama on the Israeli disinformation campaign.) This couldn’t have gone down well in Moscow. At any rate, the Russian Foreign Ministry came out on July 24 with some sharp criticism of the move by the Israeli parliament (six days earlier) to adopt a bill known as Basic Law: Israel as the Nation-State of the Jewish People.

The operation by the Syrian forces (backed by Russian allies) to liberate Quneitra succeeded beyond expectations once Washington signaled that the extremist groups entrenched in the southern provinces bordering Jordan and Israel should not expect any American intervention to bail them out.

Damascus is now turning its attention to the liberation of the northwestern province of Idlib. It will be a major confrontation due to the presence of a large number of foreign terrorists in Northwestern Syria. The Iranian media reported that a Russian flag ship Ro-Ro Sparta was spotted crossing the Bosporus en route to Syria’s Tartus, carrying military cargo mostly ammunition, shells and missiles and that the reinforcements are meant for the Syrian Army’s “upcoming assault” on Idlib province.

July 29, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Wars for Israel | , , , , , | 3 Comments

Western States Salvage Terror Assets in Syria

By Finian CUNNINGHAM | Strategic Culture Foundation | 24.07.2018

Western states made a dramatic intervention in the Syrian war earlier this week to extricate hundreds of terrorist militants. The militants are to be fast-tracked for resettlement in Europe and Canada.

But in saving their terror assets, Western governments are risking future public safety as well as sowing seeds for increasing multicultural strife.

In a stunning revelation of the foreign links to the extremists in Syria, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered his military forces to evacuate up to 800 militants belonging to the so-called White Helmets. They are the propaganda merchants for Nusra Front and other al-Qaeda-linked terror organizations.

Netanyahu announced that the blatant intervention to rescue the jihadists in southwest Syria was made at the personal request of US President Donald Trump and the Canadian premier Justin Trudeau, “among others”.

Separately, there were reports of four senior jihadist commanders being given safe passage by Israeli forces out of Syria as the Syrian army closed in on the last-remaining militant strongholds around the southwest city of Daraa and Quneitra province.

Nor was it coincidental that the evacuation operations were accompanied by Israeli air strikes on Syrian government facilities in Hama province.

Damascus condemned the extraction of hundreds of jihadists by Israel and its Western allies as a “criminal operation” and further proof of the foreign sponsoring that has fomented the nearly eight-year war.

Of course, Netanyahu, Western governments and news media sought to portray the evacuation of the “White Helmets” as a “humanitarian gesture”. This was at the same time that Israeli warplanes and snipers were stepping up the killing of medics and civilians in Gaza.

Britain’s newly appointed foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt described the Israeli “rescue” of “White Helmets” as “fantastic news”, saying that the militants were the “bravest of the brave”.

We won’t delay too much here on this fraud. The so-called first responders of the “White Helmets” are a CIA, MI6-backed propaganda outfit working hand-in-hand with the terrorist militia. Their fake videos of chemical weapons attacks and air strikes have been a key propaganda device aided and abetted by the Western news media to demonize the Syrian armed forces and its Russian ally.

The fictitious propaganda stunt alleging a chemical weapon attack in Douma on April 7 this year resulted in a barrage of air strikes by the US, Britain and France.

Created in 2013 by a British MI6 agent and former British army officer James Le Mesurier, the so-called White Helmets have been funded with hundreds of millions of dollars by the governments of the US, Britain and other NATO states.

There is abundant video evidence showing members of this fake rescue group participating in gruesome executions by the al Qaeda-aligned militants with whom they associate. One such video shows an execution of a Syrian army soldier in Daraa, the city from where the latest evacuation of jihadists by Israel took place. Daraa is also, by the way, mendaciously referred to in the Western media as the “cradle of the revolution” or the “birthplace of the uprising” against President Assad’s government back in March 2011. The only thing that Daraa was a birthplace of was the US-led foreign covert war for regime change in Syria.

Now here’s a curious thing about the latest salvaging of terror assets in Syria. The United States and Israel are not taking any of the 800 militants for resettlement. Independent investigative journalist Vanessa Beeley, who has done much to expose the real macabre nature of the White Helmets and their terror links, says that both the US and Israeli no doubt realize that by taking in such “war refugees” they are inviting terrorists into their own societies.

Which makes you wonder why Britain, Germany and Canada are stepping up to the plate to offer the 800 White Helmets a home?

The case of Germany is particularly odd. Interior minister Horst Seehofer has personally authorized the resettlement of White Helmets spirited out of Syria by Israel. This is the same Seehofer who has mounted such a strong challenge to Chancellor Angela Merkel’s “open door” policy towards immigrants.

What we are witnessing is a suicidal ignorance by Western governments to take in these cadres of White Helmets. Perhaps Seehofer and other government ministers like Britain’s Jeremy Hunt are simply woefully misinformed. But surely the state security agencies of their respective countries know all too well the criminal, psychotic nature of the people whom they are allowing into their societies.

Such a callous disregard for public safety is not unprecedented. In his well-researched book, My Fight For Syrian Freedom, Irish peace activist Dr Declan Hayes details numerous cases of how jihadist assets were knowingly cultivated by British and French state security services for the purpose of waging the covert war for regime change in Syria and Libya. These assets have been allowed to return to Britain and France under the cover of being “refugees”, with the security services turning a blind eye to their true identity.

The nefarious relationship has resulted in these terror assets committing atrocities in Europe. For example, as Hayes points out, the Manchester concert bomb attack that killed 22 people in May last year was carried out by operatives belonging to a Libyan jihad cell that MI5 and MI6 had previously overseen for their objective of prosecuting the regime-change war in Libya against Muammar Gaddafi.

Similar murky connections between jihadists “blooded in Syria” and state secret services have been uncovered in terror attacks in France and Belgium. It is not clear if these terror assets go rogue or whether they are being used by British, French and other military intelligence as a deliberate provocation in order to promote tighter national security laws and greater surveillance powers over their citizens.

Declan Hayes reckons that the problem of Western-sponsored terrorists returning to Britain and other European countries under the cover of claiming to be “war refugees” is much greater than Western governments or their media are admitting.

Hayes says that in his experience of visiting Syria many times during the war, most families loyal to the government were adamantly defiant about staying in the country and defending their communities. He reckons that there is a legitimate concern that many of the refugees fleeing from formerly militant-held cities like Aleppo and Daraa are jihadists and their families.

This view supports the right of some European governments to be wary about taking in large numbers of refugees from Syria and other war-torn countries. There is a case for rigorous vetting, but such a case is often emotionally blackmailed by naive media commentary as being “heartless” or “racist”.

There is no doubt that Western government agencies have fomented terrorist groups in Syria and elsewhere to do their dirty work for destabilizing target governments.

Now that the war in Syria is all but over with the Syrian army, backed by Russia, Iran and Hezbollah, rooting out the last jihadist remnants, we are seeing Western states taking in their terror assets. Maybe as a desperate intervention to stop them from revealing the dirty secrets of Western government collusion.

The repatriation of the White Helmets terrorist propagandists to the UK, Germany and Canada is a classic illustration.

Western authorities are playing with fire. Not only are they running the risk of public safety from future terrorist incidents. They are also stoking the flames of xenophobia, racism and culture wars against many innocent refugees who have been given shelter in Western countries.

July 24, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, False Flag Terrorism | , , , | 1 Comment

Israel seeks Russian help in Syria. Will Russia oblige?

By M K Bhadrakumar | Indian Punchline | May 4, 2018

After threatening Moscow that if it went ahead with plans to strengthen Syria’s missile defence systems, Israel will destroy them on the ground – be it “S-300 or S-700”, as Israel’s Defence Minister Avigdor Liberman sarcastically put it – Tel Aviv is now seeking Russian help to calm things down. The dramatic turnaround is typical of Israel. Israel thinks it is a smart move, but will it work?

Lieberman now wants Moscow’s intervention to tamp down Israel’s tensions with Iran. Israel has painted itself into a corner. First it began taunting Iran to step up for a fight by firing missiles at locations in Syria where Iranian military advisers (IRGC personnel) could be present. In a strike on April 8, Israel drew blood, killing 7 Iranian personnel. The IRGC was not amused. Tehran vowed that Iranian retaliation is hundred percent certain but at a time, place and manner of its choice.

Whereupon, Israel began whipping up media frenzy that a war with Iran is imminent. The pro-Israeli think tanks in the US even speculated a missile war across 1,500 kilometers of air space. But then, no one really believes that a war between Iran and Israel is imminent – or is even likely. Iran knows that Israel is not reckless enough to start a war – and, on the other hand, resorting to war to advance its interests (geopolitical, economic or security interests) is just not the Iranian way of doing things.

However, make no mistake, the IRGC will fulfill its pledge at some point to pay back Israel in its own coin. Israel knows it. Therefore, Liberman’s newfound conciliatory tone toward Moscow can be put in perspective.

Meanwhile, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s attempt to raise dust on Iran’s nuclear program has crash-landed. In Europe or Russia — or within Israel itself – there are no takers for Netanyahu’s stunt. He could not produce a shred of evidence to show that Iran has an active nuclear program today and ended up highlighting, ironically, the raison d’etre of the 2015 Iran nuclear pact.

Israel’s worst fear is that President Trump too has limited choices and may negotiate with Iran eventually. (Opinion polls show that the big majority of US opinion favors Trump keeping the 2015 pact.) Trump’s record on North Korea shows that his rhetoric doesn’t reflect his policies. Besides, Israel’s clout in the Trump White House has also diminished lately. (Aaron David Miller has an interesting write-up on CNN, As Pompeo’s star rises in Trumpland, Haley and Kushner risk getting eclipsed.)

The plain truth is that Iran’s presence in Syria is a geopolitical reality that Israel has to come to terms with. Any Iranian presence in southern Syria bordering Golan Heights becomes a red line for Israel. Liberman’s attempt to rope in Russia to prevail upon Iran to stay off Golan Heights can be seen in this context.

Given the above factors at work, what could be the Russian response? At its most obvious level, Russia will not fall into another US-Israeli game plan to create dissonance in its alliance with Iran, which is acquiring a regional character today. But Russian calculus is complex. Russia’s core interest lies in accelerating a Syrian settlement. There is complete Russian-Iranian convergence in this regard.

Moscow is open to resuming discussions with Washington regarding the creation of a “de-escalation zone” in southern Syria (comprising the provinces of Daraa, Quneitra and As-Suwayda where US and Israeli backed al-Qaeda groups are in control at present). After meeting the visiting Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman al Safadi in Sochi on Thursday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said, “Today, we agreed to continue cooperation on this important issue both bilaterally and trilaterally, involving Americans and the monitoring center.”

Indeed, the key issue is the American intentions in Syria. Here, again, there is Russian-Iranian convergence on preserving Syria’s unity. But there are contradictory signals from Washington. Pentagon commanders are generally on the warpath, but there are other signals too.

The latest report that the US state department has cut off funding for the White Helmets (which Moscow alleges to be the culprit in staging the false flag operation of “chemical attacks” in Douma last month leading the US-UK-French missile strike) is a tantalizing signal.

Moscow hopes that American and French experts may join the OPCW (Organization for the Prevention of Chemical Weapons) team to conduct and independent investigation into the alleged chemical attack in Douma. If Washington and Paris cooperate with the OPCW investigation, it will be a tacit admission of their mistake in staging the April 14 missile strike on Syria.

The big question is how far Trump follows his gut instinct to withdraw forces from Syria. Meanwhile, it is highly improbable that Moscow will fall into the Israeli tantrums. President Vladimir Putin is fed up with Netanyahu’s shenanigans. Putin was reluctant to give an appointment to Netanyahu in January. While Netanyahu keeps claiming that he has a secret understanding with Putin in regard of Israeli air strikes on Syria, the Kremlin keeps a deafening silence. Paradoxically, if anyone knows the actual truth behind the Israeli claim, it is only Tehran.

May 4, 2018 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , , | 2 Comments

21stCenturyWire restores service after sustained DDoS attack

Dear Readers,

Glad to have you back. Firstly, we would like to apologise for being offline most of last week. We’ve been working hard behind the scenes to get back online.

On Tuesday April 10th, 2018 at approximately 2pm EST, 21stCenturyWire.com sustained a heavy Denial of Service (DDoS) cyber attack and were only able to restore our systems yesterday afternoon.

We were not the only ones. Other leading alternative news websites were also hit at this exact time, including South Front, Hands Off Syria (Australia-based antiwar organisation), Fort-Russ, Syria News and others – each covering the situation in Syria closely and truthfully.

Based on the number of page requests or ‘bots’ that were hitting us each hour, this seemed similar to what happened to Craig Murray’s blog two weeks prior. In addition to the online attacks on alternative media outlets, Facebook was blocking similar content on their platform – including South Front, until they appealed and were eventually reinstated.

Based on these facts, we believe that it’s not “highly likely” but 100% certain that the party(s) attacking us and other similar platforms did so on behalf of a state actor – and in the interests of prosecuting another illegal war by way of deception based on a false pretext.

The entire false case for this latest US, UK and French missile strike relied on spurious claims made by US-funded ‘opposition’ group called the Syrian American Medical Society (SAMS), and more importantly – by videos produced and uploaded by the White Helmets, a pseudo NGO funded mainly by the UK government, as well as millions from US and EU member states, and who operate exclusively in terror-held areas of Syria. Their raison d’etre is precisely what took place this week – to manufacture and fabricate a case for western military intervention in Syria.

On this basis, we believe that it was no coincidence that this website, 21stCenturyWire.com, was attacked in part because we happen to house the largest White Helmets research archive on the web, thanks to the hard work of our associate editor Vanessa Beeley currently reporting from on the ground in Syria – bravely working to tell the truth not only about this week’s events, but also about the last seven years of the West’s dirty war on Syria.

In 2015, we blew open the White Helmets story and proceeded to keep digging through their rubble of lies to get a true picture of what this western construct was all about. Many mainstream bodies were not happy about our coverage, including a supposed ‘free press’ organisation, Reporters Without Borders who tried to block Vanessa’s testimony at the Swiss Press Club this past fall.

The establishment’s campaign continued, with defamatory and sloppy hit-pieces by leading mainstream media publications like the The Guardian and Rupert Murdoch’s The Times and various other media outlets – all designed to harass, intimidate and silence us, or anyone who dares to challenge the official western corporate narrative on the White Helmets and Syria.

This week the world saw the White Helmets in all their glory – serving the necessary propaganda to create a false pretext for another regime change war in the Middle East. What we are witnessing here is truly a criminal enterprise, made possible by western governments, their Gulf and NATO allies and their loyal battalions of proxy militants and terrorists, paid for by our public money and oil profits from Saudi Arabia, Qatar and others. And they have resources to prosecute war on many fronts including the information sphere, where they wage their war on truth from the fortified ivory towers of the mainstream media and the Silicon Valley, and in the cyber sphere through various government programs attempting to mute, shut down and censor in the name of ‘national security’ or worse, claiming that they are somehow ‘combating fake news’ by suppressing the truth. And yet, despite all this, we found their Achilles heel, hiding in plain sight.

For those of you who stepped-in to help us this week – thank you very much. Without your support we might still be offline right now. Those of you who know us and have been kind enough to support us and our work our this last year – we really appreciate your help. Thanks also to our technical experts and IT contractors who worked hard on our behalf this week, with a lot time, effort and money spent. As we’re a small and independent operation, our resources are limited and we’ll need your continued help and support going forward.

I think this week shows more than anything how a small, independent and dedicated group of people, supported by an even bigger group of wonderful individuals – can make a difference.

Now back to work.

Regards,

Patrick Henningsen
Editor and Founder
21st Century Wire

April 15, 2018 Posted by | Full Spectrum Dominance, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , | Leave a comment