Articles tagués : Syria

April’s fool – extended !

It all started in 1990 with the Gayssot act, which penalizes any narrative contradicting the official account of the Holocaust (*). For the first time, history was no longer a subject of debate and controversy : the entire French nation was told what to believe, and non-believers or skeptics who dared voice their doubts publicly would soon expose themselves to prosecution.

9/11 was the next marker : any Frenchman publicly contradicting the US government’s version of the events leading up to the massacre based on its inconsistencies (the Third-Tower mystery, for instance) and its unlikeliness (intact foreign passports left in the vicinity of Ground Zero like Easter eggs for the FBI to find) was swiftly portrayed as mentally unstable and unworthy of attention.

But it was probably the Charlie-Hebdo tragedy and the ensuing events that allowed all those within the French political and media establishment who were eager to once and for all curtail free speech in a way that would serve their interests to deploy their full-pravda dominance. Indeed, under the guise of fighting apology for terrorism, the powers that be designated, among others, philosophy teachers who had the nerve to examine said events critically by looking at the big picture as fair game to their hierarchy, and even to the judicial system.

This proclivity towards censorship symbolically culminated during the latest French presidential election, when a fringe candidate was accused by the mainstream media of being a conspiracy theorist… merely for quoting press snippets from the past which were no longer in line with the current state of mind of the so-called elites.

All while feeding a new McCarthyism that is a conspiracy theory in and of itself, the oh so enlightened new French aristocracy, boosted by the 2016 glitch in the matrix overseas, is now totally unhinged in its attempt to suppress any dissent : French subsidized daily Le Monde, for instance, has become so arrogant it now assesses the credibility of its alternative competitors, and a new law should soon allow Versailles to resort to interlocutory proceedings to instantly muzzle any whistleblower labeled a bearer of “fake news”.

In the country of Descartes, methodical doubt has become a heresy. In the country of the Enlightenment, obscurantism is praised again : seeking the truth is suspicious, thinking critically nearly criminal. In the country of secularism, you’d better be a good believer

***

Assad is a monster. Anyone who would still doubt that by now wouldn’t be in his right mind. The butcher of Damas might indeed be the instigator of last Saturday’s alleged events in Douma (also known as the lower house). But that’s not the topic of this article…

What we are required to believe is. It was a month ago

Based on the positive identification of this chemical agent […], our knowledge that Russia has previously produced this agent and would still be capable of doing so, […] the Government has concluded that it is highly likely that Russia was responsible for the act against Sergei and Julia Skripal.

Theresa May, March 12, 2018

It hasn’t changed…

The British Cabinet met recently and they concluded that the Assad regime has a track record of the use of chemical weapons and that it is highly likely the regime is responsible for Saturday’s attack.

Karen Pierce, British ambassador to the UN, April 13, 2018

So, we shouldn’t enquire about the date of production of the unverified images which briefly dominated this week’s news cycle. We should question neither their source, nor the plausibility of the claim. The development of private armies without congressional oversight shouldn’t alert us. The quickness with which some people reacted shouldn’t surprise us either. For such a solid claim to be derived exclusively from circumstantial evidence is itself circumstantial. The past twenty years – hell, history as a whole ! – have demonstrated our leaders never lie. Therefore, we shouldn’t demand to see the evidence they claim they possess. We should just trust them. For we should not question the existence of God. Should we, we would be conspiracy theorists, would we not ?…

« Face à ceux qui veulent créer la confusion, allant jusqu’à accuser les populations syriennes de s’être gazées elles-mêmes, face à ceux qui suggèrent un complot, […] nous devons revenir à des faits simples. »

François Delattre, ambassadeur de France à l’ONU, 13 avril 2018

Tenebras vincere populace…

_________________

(*) Said act pertains to crimes against Humanity in general, but at the time only the Jewish ethnocide perpetrated by the nazis was concerned.

The Gayssot bill was adopted in 1990, not in 1976, as initially stated. The correction was made on April 16, 2016.

The same day, the tweet grossly minimizing the importance of the Holocaust dated April 15 was added for illustration purposes only.

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Syria : « the chemical attacks are a set-up »

«Haytham Manna is a Syrian writer [in exile]; he spent three decades as a human rights activist who helped create and became spokesperson for the Arab Commission for Human Rights (ACHR). In 2011, during the early stages of the Syrian civil war, he resigned as spokesperson of the ACHR and helped create and become spokesperson of the National Coordination Committee for Democratic Change (NCC), one of the two main opposition groups active in the uprising that became a civil war. Manna lives in Paris. »

Wikipedia

Haytham Manna

This is the translation of an interview he gave a Belgian newspaper last week…

The use of chemical weapons in Syria could lead the West to punishing the regime. What do you think about that ?

HAYTHAM MANNA : « I am totally against it, as is the coordination I’m leading. It will only reinforce the regime. Furthermore, any intervention is likely to stir up violence even more, to add destruction to the destruction and to further dismantle the possibility of a political dialogue. The regime is the prime responsible for it has chosen the [drastic] military option. But how can one speak of a war against terror and at the same time give a hand to Al Qaeda affiliated extremists ? »

Are the Western powers choosing the wrong option, according to you ?

« It has been a succession of political mistakes from the start. The US, France and the UK have pushed the parties to radicalize. They haven’t prevented jihadists from going to Syria, and have waited a very long time before mentioning this phenomenon. Where is democracy in this whole project aiming at destroying Syria ? And do you think they are guided by morality ? During the Halabja massacre [perpetrated by Saddam Hussein’s forces in 1988], they closed their eyes. I am also surprised to see that the victims of chemical weapons are far more taken into account than the 100,000 people who died since the beginning of the conflict. »

Who is responsible for the latest chemical weapons related massacre ?

« I don’t have any certainty yet, but our data doesn’t match president Hollande’s. There would be thousands of casualties, while we have a list of less than 500 names at our disposal. Thus, this is propaganda, psychological warfare, and certainly not the truth. Furthermore, the chemical weapons used were basic. Do you really think the overpowered loyalist army needs this ? Last but not least, videos and pictures were posted on the internet before the beginning of the strikes. And this is the material the US is using as evidence ! »

 Do you think one of the conflicting parties wanted to provoke the West into intervening ?

« It’s a set-up. We know the chemical weapons were used by Al Qaeda. Now the Free Syrian Army and groups linked to Al Qaeda are joining forces for 80 % of their operations in the northern part of the country. One month ago, Ahmad Jarba [who is coordinating the armed opposition] pretended he was going to change the balance of forces on the ground. Yet, the opposite happened : the loyalist army has been progressing. Therefore, only a direct intervention could help out the rebels… So, let’s wait. If Al Qaeda is responsible, it’ll have to be said loud and clear. If it’s the regime, a UN resolution will be required. As opposed to letting two or three countries unite their friends [for a military intervention], not all of whom are commendable, by the way. »

Which, from the Western and the Russian position, do you think is the most coherent one ?

« The Russians are the most coherent because they are seriously striving for Geneva 2. The [US] cheated. Two or three times, they withdrew [from the negotiations] when the parties were coming together. »

Is a political solution still possible ?

« Anything is possible, but it will depend on the US. The French are merely following. A political solution is the only option to save Syria. But the armed opposition can’t agree on a delegation.»

What will become of Bachar al-Assad ?

« He won’t stay. If the negotiations succeed, they will de facto lead to a parliamentary regime. That is if we accept to respect the draft for Geneva 2, which is the best document, sanctioned by an international agreement. But let me say this : when you talk about massacres of minorities, the president being part of one, how can you ask him to remove himself or not ? Today, the West has strengthened his position of defender of the Syrian unity and the minorities. This said, no one will be able to claim victory : violence has become so blind only a [national union] comprised of the opposition and the regime can put an end to it. »

http://www.levif.be/info/actualite/international/syrie-les-attaques-chimiques-sont-un-coup-monte/article-4000384171801.htm

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AN INSULT TO INTELLIGENCE (again) !

Carte du Moyen-Orient

moon38/21/13 – 5:45

« At the moment, I am not totally convinced because the people that are helping them are without any protective clothing and without any respirators, » said Paula Vanninen, director of Verifin, the Finnish Institute for Verification of the Chemical Weapons Convention.

« In a real case, they would also be contaminated and would also be having symptoms. »

John Hart, head of the Chemical and Biological Security Project at Stockholm International Peace Research Institute said he had not seen the telltale evidence in the eyes of the victims that would be compelling evidence of chemical weapons use.

« Of the videos that I’ve seen for the last few hours, none of them show pinpoint pupils… this would indicate exposure to organophosphorus nerve agents, » he said.

Gwyn Winfield, editor of CBRNe World magazine, which specialises in chemical weapons issues, said the evidence did not suggest that the chemicals used were of the weapons-grade that the Syrian army possesses in its stockpiles.

« We’re not seeing reports that doctors and nurses… are becoming fatalities, so that would suggest that the toxicity of it isn’t what we would consider military sarin. It may well be that it is a lower-grade, » Winfield told AFP.[…]

http://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/RestOfAsia/Syria-over-1-300-massacred-in-chemical-attack-by-army/Article1-1110869.aspx

 “Adding to the doubts, some analysts are now wondering if the attack might have actually involved chlorine, which is also a chemical weapon but can be bought over-the-counter. A March Reuters story described a possible chemical attack in the northern town of Khan al-Assal, near Aleppo, after which residents said they could smell chlorine. The Telegraph reported at the time that Syrian regime forces accused rebels of using a homemade chlorine solution in the attack. […]

As Foreign Policy’s Blake Hounshell points out, Khan al-Assal was a regime-controlled area at the time, which suggests that if anyone were to attack it, it would probably be rebels.”

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/worldviews/wp/2013/05/06/syrian-chemical-weapons-reports-get-murkier/

A Reuters photographer said victims he had visited in Aleppo hospitals were suffering breathing problems and that people had said they could smell chlorine after the attack.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/03/19/us-syria-crisis-chemical-idUSBRE92I0A220130319

 “Terrorists Using Chlorine Car Bombs to Intimidate Iraqis

By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, June 6, 2007 – “Anyone who doubts that al Qaeda would use chemical, nuclear or biological weapons need only look at the terror group’s attacks in Iraq, Defense officials said.

Al Qaeda and affiliated groups have used chlorine gas in attacks against civilians, Iraqi forces and coalition forces at least 15 times since October, according to U.S. officials in Baghdad.

“Chlorine is used by terrorists with the intent to harm or kill large numbers of civilians,” an official said. “The attacks show that the terrorists are adaptable, but it reflects more on their maliciousness than their sophistication. […]

http://www.defense.gov/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=46311

 “Stephen Johnson is an expert in weapons and chemical explosives at Cranfield Forensic Institute. He said there were inconsistency among the patients’ symptoms.

“There are, within some of the videos, examples which seem a little hyper-real, and almost as if they’ve been set up. Which is not to say that they are fake but it does cause some concern.”

?

Am I in heaven ? I am alive ! I am alive […]

?

“Some of the people with foaming, the foam seems to be too white, too pure, and not consistent with the sort of internal injury you might expect to see, which you’d expect to be bloodier or yellower,” Johnson said.

Johnson said that although much of the video showed injuries consistent with trauma to the nervous system, it was too early to conclude that it was from chemical weapons.

“At this stage everyone wants a ‘yes-no’ answer to chemical attack. But it is too early to draw a conclusion just from these videos,” he added.”

http://www.euronews.com/2013/08/21/expert-casts-doubt-on-chemical-weapons-footage-from-syria/

“Jean Pascal Zanders, an independent researcher who specializes in chemical and biological weapons and disarmament, said that in videos of the aftermath of the attacks, the hue of the victims’ faces appeared to show many suffered from asphyxiation.

However, he said the symptoms they exhibited were not consistent with mustard gas or the nerve agents VX or sarin. Mustard gas would cause blistering of the skin and discoloration, while the nerve agents would produce severe convulsions in the victims and also affect the paramedics treating them – neither of which was evident from the videos or reports.

« I’m deliberately not using the term chemical weapons here, » he said. « There’s plenty of other nasty stuff that was used in the past as a chemical warfare agent, so many industrial toxicants could be used too. » […]

The head of the U.N. team, which has a mandate to investigate previous claims of alleged chemical attacks, said he wants to look into the latest claims. Speaking to Swedish broadcaster SVT, Ake Sellstrom said the high numbers of dead and wounded being reported « sound suspicious. »

« It looks like something we need to look into, » Sellstrom, who is Swedish, was quoted as saying.”

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/21/syria-poison-gas-attack_n_3789642.html

“Jihadists, not Assad, apparently behind reported chemical attack in Syria

Intelligence reports suggest jihadists among the Syria rebels have technical know-how to produce chemical warheads.”

http://www.haaretz.com/news/middle-east/jihadists-not-assad-apparently-behind-reported-chemical-attack-in-syria.premium-1.511680

moon29/5/13 – 15:37

7 questions to the “inept hawks” :

1/ Which ones from the ones who are asking questions, demanding explanations and questioning the official Western version (and agenda), and the ones who, for political motives, are cynically surfing on popular emotion and deliberately jumping to conclusions, are paying the victims the sincerest and most respectful tribute ?

2/ What would be the toll of NATO carpet bombings compared to the nearly 400 civilian victims who perished on August 21st ?

3/ Why should one neglected warning underlined in red lead to an irrational macho military strategy not even the US army chief of staff is effectively supporting (or is it a bluff) ?

4/ Why affirm, against all evidence to the contrary and despite the inevitable escalation a scenario involving NATO would engender, overthrowing the Syrian regime would not be the actual goal / result of a foreign intervention ?

5/ Why out of all windows of opportunity for a military intervention choose the worst timing imaginable to intervene in a conflict in which the madmen clearly have the upper hand on so-called rebel side and the lines between factions have become so blurry ?

6/ What kind of powder keg involving generations to come is the war hungry West shaping / endorsing in the Middle-East ?

7/ Who will carry the blame for possible future terrorist attacks in the US and / or Europe resulting from this (deliberately ?) inept strategy, as well as for subsequent wars ?

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If the concurring reports about the regular (Arab) Syrian army are right, if indeed 70 % of Syrian territory is currently under control of the regime, if NATO manages to mind its own business, if the Saudis are put under pressure ro call back their mercenaries, if Israel understands chaos on its borders is not in its interest, if Turkey quits its double game and if the British and French clowns abandon their project to shape new leaders in their own image, Syria has a chance of regaining stability. Should that miracle be accomplished, Assad, if he’s smart and if he really loves his community,and his country, will understand it’s time for him to move on and let others take office in order to reshape national consensus. Of course, there’s a high probability Paris and London will be in a bottle before that happens…

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Transparency

What left is there to write ?

The war dogs want their regular supply. Whose side will you be on ? Which warriors will you choose ? Which right wing ? Which regression ? Which civil war ? Which destruction ?

Libya is falling to pieces. Iraq is blowing its children to the four winds. Hail to the liberators ! Meanwhile, Eastern Congo is burning again, but that, as usual, nobody cares about.

Will you support the proud colonists naming their new preferred ambassadors here and there, join in spirit with the fierce knights of the moral civilization, once again shining the superior light of their bombs and missiles on the pitiful mortals they use as a pretext for their umpteenth foreign intervention ? Will you side with their masters perhaps, already hopping up and down with impatience at the thought of the booming new Syrian housing market and the London-style health care system ? Nothing is free, you see : all is fee to the masters. Which right wing will you choose ?…

Will you choose Allah’s, the one some praise with gigantic explosions ? Look, Allah came… Oh, look, a huge meteorite heading toward Earth… Allahu akbar !… Will you stand behind the rebels of doom standing up against the current rival of their deepest enemies, cheer at the short-lived victories of the reptilian predators produced en masse by fat saurian monarchs of a long lost time, they too in all likelihood  listening to Wagner in the intimacy of their royal closets while enjoying the sacrilegious company of drugged-up Western prostitutes made to disappear and provided to them as a courtesy of the free market. Which right wing will you choose ?…

Will you prefer the firm advocates of the fusion between flesh and state, those who dictate the rules of how and with whom one’s body ought to behave, look back with tenderness and emotion at the sovereign stick, the turgescent manhood, they themselves never hesitated to display when facing the slow decay of the political abstraction they had once stood for, mirroring inside their borders that famous ism-word the others have proven so keen on exporting, echoing that twisted scenario that entered its second decade, mimicking that nihilistic oppression crushing all thought. Which right wing will you choose ?…

Will you fall for the timid denial and the listless, monotonous, monologues of good faith perverted by the sound of tanks and the heavy airborne artillery that have been casting their shadows of death for well over two years, indiscriminately ? Will you absolve the dictator and his court of their sins on the grounds they’re not the ones who started it ? Will you sit back and gently watch as hell continues to unfold and armed autism becomes the prime conqueror ? Which evil will you embrace ? Which right wing will you choose ?…

We all aspire to transparency. Transparency has become the dream. Transparent is the new black. Through a transparent prism, colored can be dazzling, white pitch-dark. Transparency can be a nightmare.

The first ones claim it’s likely that the special UN commission won’t be able to find any substantial evidence five days after the alleged chemical attack, while its task consisted in finding some related to incidents that occurred two or three months before.

As their petro-sponsors keep feeding them with weapons blessed by their god’s sacred blow, the second ones, out of an appetite for revenge, promised to target Alawite families as retaliation against the designated enemy.

The third ones see their gloomy Middle-Eastern business flourish as well, which has been a convincing reason among others for refraining from putting pressure on their amorphous ally.

As for the fourth ones, instead of defusing an attack from the West on their regime by soliciting interviews with independent Western media and allowing immediate access to the scene of the chemical crime, they’ve rather opted for the usual dry argumentation not the least bit aimed at convincing those who aren’t already convinced or who are being brainwashed by Western propagandist discourse.

All of them are so transparent it makes them void and obsolete. Their predictability is disgusting. Their glaring at each other for the past two years should be read as nothing more than an admission of helplessness. Their standing firm on shaky grounds for so long in the name of their respective interests, all derived from the male domination scheme, is repugnant.

The transparent agenda of their Acherontic souls combined is what killed tens of thousands and made millions flee. The crepuscular addition of the torments they fomented is what led a seemingly peaceful country to the verge of collapse. The reverse attraction of their silly stubbornness, with a back-to-back foursome as a result, is what made dialogue impossible. Their fossility is what’s now threatening an entire region, leaving us with this haunting question…

What left is there to write ?…

Ensor, La mort et les masques (1927)

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