UN covers up war crimes in Syria, citing U.S. backed Al-Qaeda propagandists

d

Oct 29, 2016, The Duran

Once again, unnamed sources and al-Qaeda in White Helmets are claiming that either the Syrian or Russian air force are responsible for deaths of civilians, this time an alleged 22 children in Idlib province.

Once again, American claims need no actual proof and defy damning satellite imagery contradicting the accusations.

Once again, the hypocrisy not only of American exceptionalism but also of the United Nations is staggering.

Regarding unsubstantiated accusations of an attack on what Western and White Helmets spokespeople are claiming was an airstrike on a school complex in Hass, Idlib, on October 26, UNICEF cried “war crimes”. With supreme audacity, UNICEF  Executive Director Anthony Lake further claimed that this “airstrike” may be “the deadliest attack on a school since the war began more than five years ago.”

Perhaps Lake was otherwise distracted when on October 1, 2014, terrorists car and suicide bombed the Akrama Al-Makhzoumi School in Homs, killing at least 41 children by conservative estimates, or up to 48 children by other reports, along with women and other civilians.

Even when different phoneticisations of the Arabic name are searched, no similar statement of condemnation and anguish for the children murdered at the Akrama school bombings can be found on UNICEF’s website, even prior to Lake.

Nor can any mention be found of documented recent terrorist shelling attacks on schools in greater, government-secured Aleppo.

Nor can any mention be found of the terrorist shelling of That al-Nitaqain elementary school in Dara’a on October 11, which in early reports had killed at least 5 students and critically-injured others.

Western-backed terrorists have a history of attacking schools throughout Syria; the lives of these students seemingly don’t matter to the UN body purporting to be concerned for  the lives of children around the world.

In actual fact, the UN is covering up the war crimes of terrorists the West backs.

Absurdities of West’s Latest Claims

Western officials and slavish media are reporting “almost two dozen children” killed in an “airstrike” on the Idlib schools, relying on the usual sources completely lacking in credibility: the so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, run by Rami Abdul Rahman in his UK shop-office; unnamed activists; and the so-called White Helmets, funded to the tune of up to US$ 100 million by Western governments and operating solely in al-Nusra areas of Syria, and frequently seen holding guns themselves, as well as standing on the dead bodies of Syrian soldiers.

Aside from the issue of these dodgy sources, the claims themselves of Russian or Syrian airstrikes have very easily and quickly been debunked not only by the Russian Ministry of Defence with its satellite imagery of the area, but also by the exercise of common sense based on the photos presented as “evidence” by said dubious sources.

Russian Defence Ministry spokesman Major General Igor Konashenkov in a statement said:

“As can be seen from the photos taken by the drone, there are no signs of damage to the roof of the school, or craters from airstrikes around it.

We have analysed the photo and video ‘evidence’ of the supposed attack. The video published in a range of Western media outlets appears to consist of more than 10 different shots, filmed at different times of the day, and in different resolutions that were edited into a single clip.

The photograph published by AFP shows that only one wall of the school is damaged, and all the desks inside the classroom are in place. The outer fence seen through the hole has no traces of damage from bomb fragments. In a genuine airstrike this is physically impossible – the furniture would have been swept away by the blast wave, and there would have been damage marks on the classroom wall and the outer fence.”

READ FULL ARTICLE AT THE DURAN

Killed in Turkey: No investigation two years after suspicious death of American journalist Serena Shim

serena-shimin-crashed-cropped

Oct 20, 2016, The Duran 

(republished at Global Research)

October 19 marks two years since the very sudden and suspicious death of American journalist Serena Shim near Suruç, Turkey, close to the Syrian border.

Although all signs point to foul play, indeed murder, by Turkish intelligence, until now the US government has neither conducted nor demanded an inquiry into the events of the alleged car accident which Turkish officials say was the cause of Shim’s death, let alone offer condolences to the family.

Serena Shim was at the time reporting on Ayn al-Arab (Kobani), from the Turkish side. She was, in her own words, one of the first, if not the first, on the ground to report on ,“Takfiri militants going in through the Turkish border”. These include not only ISIS but also terrorists from the so-called Free Syrian Army (FSA).

As Shim’s sister Fatmeh Shim stated in 2015, “She caught them bringing in ISIS high-ranked members into Syria from Turkey into camps, which are supposed to be Syrian refugee camps.”

Serena Shim’s January 2013 expose, “Turkey’s Pivotal Role in Syria’s Insurgency: PressTV Report from Inside Turkey,” showed footage of what she estimated to be 300 semi-trucks “awaiting militants to empty them out”; included testimony explaining how Turkey enables the crossing of foreign terrorists “freely” into Syria; spoke of the funneling of arms via the Incirlik US Air Base in Turkey to terrorists in refugee camps or on through to Syria; and highlighted the issue of terrorist training camps portrayed as refugee camps, guarded by the Turkish military.

Shim named the World Food Organization as one of the NGOs whose trucks were being used to funnel terrorists’ arms into Syria, and stated this in her last interview, just one day before being killed. Notably, in that interview she also explicitly stated that she feared for her life because Turkish intelligence had accused her of being a spy. She told Press TV:

“Turkey has been labeled by Reporters Without Borders as the largest prison for journalists, so I am a bit frightened about what they might use against me… I’m hoping that nothing is going to happen, that it’s going to blow over. I would assume that they are going to take me in for questioning, and the next hope is that my lawyer is good enough to get me out as soon as possible.”

Two days later, Press TV announced her death, stating:

“Serena was killed in a reported car accident when she was returning from a report scene in the city of Suruch in Turkey’s Urfa province. She was going back to her hotel in Urfa when their car collided with a heavy vehicle.”

This was the official version of her death, although in subsequent versions the story changed. In a report one month later, Russia Today (RT) spoke with Shim’s sister, who said:

“There’s so many different stories. The first was that Serena’s car was hit by a heavy vehicle, who proceeded to keep on driving. They could not find the vehicle nor could they find the driver. Two days later, surprisingly, they had found the vehicle and the driver, and had pictures of the heavy vehicle hitting my sister’s car. Every day coming out with new pictures of different degrees of damages that have happened to the car.”

“Serena and my cousin who was the driver of the car were taken to two different hospitals. She was reported first dead at the scene. Then coming out with later reports that she passed away at the hospital 30 minutes later from heart failure?! ”

READ THE FULL ARTICLE AT THE DURAN

The Revolutionary Distemper in Syria That Wasn’t

Outstanding and informative rebuttal to a recent piece by Eric Draitser on CounterPunch, as well as to the lies in general purported by corporate media and rights groups as to how events played out in Syria in the early days of the unrest/war on Syria. Gowans also provides a much needed lesson in historical context. Masterpiece, by Stephen Gowans!

what's left

October 22, 2016

Apparently, the US Left has yet to figure out that Washington doesn’t try to overthrow neoliberals. If Syrian President Bashar al-Assad were a devotee of the Washington Consensus–as Counterpunch’s Eric Draitser seems to believe–the United States government wouldn’t have been calling since 2003 for Assad to step down. Nor would it be overseeing the Islamist guerilla war against his government; it would be protecting him.

By Stephen Gowans

There is a shibboleth in some circles that, as Eric Draitser put it in a recent Counterpunch article, the uprising in Syria “began as a response to the Syrian government’s neoliberal policies and brutality,” and that “the revolutionary content of the rebel side in Syria has been sidelined by a hodgepodge of Saudi and Qatari-financed jihadists.” This theory appears, as far as I can tell, to be based on argument by assertion, not evidence.

Mass demonstration in support of Syria's secular Arab nationalist government, 2011. Mass demonstration in support of…

View original post 8,079 more words

Overcoming Savagery and Treachery, Maaloula’s Heroic Defenders Fight for the Future

DSCN2442.jpg
© Eva Bartlett

Oct 18, 2016, Strategic Culture Foundation, (republished at SOTT.net)

-Eva Bartlett

Since 2013, September has for the historic village of Maaloula been a month of tragic anniversaries. Crimes and atrocities committed by Western, Gulf, Turkish and Zionist-backed terrorists there in September alone include murders, maimings, kidnappings, and the beginning of what would be the vast destruction and looting of Maaloula’s rich and unique ancient heritage.

On September 4, 2013, a Jordanian suicide-bomber exploded his truck at the Syrian army checkpoint at the arched gate outside the village. This was immediately followed by attacks on Syrian soldiers nearby, mainly by al-Nusra (al-Qaeda in Syria) and the Free Syrian Army (FSA) terrorists—including Chechens, Uighurs, Turkestanis, Libyans, and Saudis, as well as locals.


Gate at the outskirts of Maaloula, where on September 4, 2013, al-Nusra and other terrorists carried out a series of coordinated attacks on Syrian soldiers, the start of the battle for Maaloula. © Eva Bartlett

On September 7, 2013, terrorists point-blank assassinated three unarmed Maaloula men after they refused to convert to Islam, critically injuring one of the men’s sisters.

On September 13, 2013, a group of roughly twenty Syrians, including a Maaloula local, climbed the mountains above the town in an attempt to observe the never-interrupted, nearly 1,700 year old, annual traditions of the Festival of the Holy Cross. Terrorists attacked the men, killing roughly half of them and abducting the others (1).

Although since March 2013 al-Nusra and FSA, among other terrorist factions, had occupied areas of the cliffs above and beyond the over 4,000 year old village, the September 4th attack began what would be an eight month battle by Maaloula’s defence forces, the Syrian Arab Army, and Hezbollah to liberate the village from terrorists who bombed, burned, looted, and in any way possible attempted to destroy the heritage of Maaloula.

According to Maaloula local defence soldiers, between September 4, 2013 and April 14, 2014, at least 200 soldiers of the Syrian army were killed in the battles to liberate Maaloula, including at least four who were savagely beheaded in the initial terrorist attacks. Their honourable sacrifices will not be forgotten.

The less-recognized heroes in Maaloula’s fight against terrorism were those villagers who defied terrorists’ commands or with arms resisted them, and continue to do so now.

In July 2016, I returned to Maaloula to see how life had improved since April 2014, and to hear the accounts of Maaloula’s heroic defenders and of a woman left for dead.

CONTINUE READING

Syrian Narratives: Interview on Sputnik Radio

13925332_1263771560299502_7789554633420643969_n

“John Wight interviews Eva Bartlett, writer and human rights activist, on what is really happening on the ground in Syria and why the mainstream media are only showing one side of the story.”

Click HERE to listen on Sputnik.

*Please note, that at 4:35 minutes  I intended to say “March, 2011” and not “September”. 

RELATED LINKS:

Updates From on the Ground in Syria: June to August 11

– Aleppo and nearby villages ravaged by the West’s “moderate” terrorists (photo essay)

Western corporate media ‘disappears’ over 1.5 million Syrians and 4,000 doctors

REVEALED: Russia Contacted US Twice to Stop Coalition’s Massacre of Syrian Army Troops

The Guardian view on Aleppo: More Western lies about Syria

‘West not serious about fighting terrorism’ – adviser to Syrian President Assad

Terrorists’ Attack on Damascus Restaurant and Homes: “They have no humanity and no respect for children” [related: Where is the West’s compassion & condemnation following terror attacks in Middle East? ]

 

Aleppo and nearby villages ravaged by the West’s “moderate” terrorists (photo essay)

10.jpgGerman
*Aleppo citadel. © Eva Bartlett

Sep. 8, 2016, SOTT.net

(republished at Global Research )

-Eva Bartlett (all images and videos by author)

The northern city of Aleppo has been one of the most grossly misreported-on cities in the Syrian Arab Republic, with Western and Gulf media and NGOs continuously ignoring the realities of life in this city of over 1.5 million civilians, instead launching coordinated propaganda campaigns against the Syrian government and army (SAA), and in favour of terrorists labeled as “rebels”, and ignoring their firing of an array of missiles, rockets, Hell Cannon-fired gas canister bombs, explosive bullets, and more onto the civilians of greater Aleppo.

Terrorist factions occupying areas of Aleppo include Jabhat al-Nusra, Ahrar al-Sham, the so-called “Free Syrian Army”, and child-beheading Nour el din Zinki mercenaries.

In July and in August, 2016, I travelled by car to Aleppo, to meet with doctors and ordinary civilians, and to hear their testimonies of life in a city which has many times been under terrorists’ siege and is always under terrorists’ bombings and snipings.

I was also able to visit Nubl, adjacent to Zahra’a, two villages just north of Aleppo which were under a devastating 3.5 year siege by terrorist factions until the SAA and allies lifted it in February 2016. Residents endured prolonged periods of hunger, were targeted by terrorists’ bombings, and for want of medicines, medical treatment, and sanitary conditions suffered diseases that could otherwise have been treated.

The main highway to Aleppo runs through Idlib and Aleppo governorates. Due to the occupation of their countryside by terrorists, the sole means of entering the city has only been via the Khanasser road and onto southern Ramouseh road, a roughly 500m stretch of which was risky due to terrorists’ sniping and shelling.

By August, the Ramouseh road had been closed due to terrorists’ increased shelling and sniping, and subsequently due to their occupation of districts in and near Ramouseh.

North of the city, the Castello road—much of which is a bumpy dirt path framed by the landscape of destroyed vehicles during the fight against terrorism—is now the only way into the city. Although secured by the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and allies, the road is nonetheless targeted by mortars from terrorists occupying areas outside of Aleppo, as was the case the morning I was leaving Aleppo.

During the August trip, I visited the liberated areas of Bani Zeid and the Lairamoun Industrial district, both scenes of devastation in the fight against terrorists who were finally defeated.

Following are photos from the two visits.


Driving up the Khanasser road, one passes the shells of trucks and cars, destroyed in one of Da’esh and other terrorists’ attacks on the road.

3
On many sections of the Khanasser road, as well as the east-west road leading to Ithriya, Da’esh terrorists flank one side of the highway, just 2 or 3 km away, and the so-called FSA, al-Nusra and other factions flank the other side.

3
Entering Aleppo via the southern Ramouseh road, stacked barrels, then embankments of sand and earth, screen cars from terrorist snipers’ bullets. Five of the driver’s were killed by snipers on this stretch of road in Ramouseh. This alternative road was the main means of entering Aleppo. Civilians in trucks, buses and cars on the road are all potential targets for Western-backed terrorists.

CONTINUE READING!

The Guardian view on Aleppo: More Western lies about Syria

lama1

*Terrorist-fired gas shells in the old city of Aleppo on August 2nd killed 4 people, including one rescuer with Aleppo’s *real* Syrian Civil Defense. Photo by Aleppo journalist Lama Khaly. According to Khaly, the man in the photo died of his injuries. This reality was not told in the Guardian or other corporate media.

September 8, 2016, SOTT.net

-Eva Bartlett

Once again, without fail, as the Syrian army makes advances in fighting al-Qaeda in Syria — aka Jabhat al-Nusra — and the child-beheading ‘moderate’ terrorists of Nour al-din al-Zenki in districts of eastern and southern Aleppo, simultaneously a new bout of the same old tired and repeatedly disproved accusations of chemical weapons attacks by the Syrian Army is making the rounds.

The Guardian‘s September 6th article is embarrassingly (well, I would be) unsourced and, as per the norm, cites “unnamed activists” and the al-Qaeda-affiliated “rescuers”, known either as the “White Helmets” or — quite factually incorrect — the “Syrian Civil Defence”, as they are neither civil (many carry arms) nor rescuers (rescuers don’t pose with dead Syrian soldiers). The article’s fallacies are many and the propaganda as crass as ever. The Guardian must really think their readers are stupid.

Before diving into the problematic article and its unsubstantiated accusations, let’s pause to ask the obvious: Logically, why would the Syrian army need to drop chlorine on a population when conventional bombs will do far more damage? Suggestion: If the Guardian wants to portray the Syrian government as mass-murdering its civilians, which is in fact the Guardian‘s, and NATO’s, intent, then forget ineffective weapons like chlorine and start screaming that the Syrian government has nuked Aleppo.

As Stephen Gowans pointed out, in rebuttal to one of the earlier accusations of chlorine attacks by the Syrian army in May 2015:

“As a weapon, chlorine gas is exceedingly ineffective. It is lethal only in highly concentrated doses and where medical treatment is not immediately available. It is far less effective than conventional weapons.” (See also Gowans’ ‘New York Times Complicit in Spreading False Syria Allegations’)

Another obvious question: When the Syrian government has repeatedly been accused in the past of conducting chemical weapons attacks, and has gone to the extent of ridding itself of its chemical weapons (its southern genocidal ‘neighbour’ cannot say the same), why use a gas to attack terrorists when the predictable outcome would be a Western call for a No-Fly-Zone in Syria?

As I wrote earlier:

“The US and HR actors have repeatedly — and without evidence — accused Syria of using Sarin gas, then chlorine, accusations which have been amply refuted. Seymour Hersh’s probe on the sarin attacks was so damning, US mainstream media wouldn’t print it.

Tim Anderson investigated the August 2013 Ghouta attacks, pointing out:

  • UN investigator Carla del Ponte had testimony from victims that ‘rebels’ had used sarin gas in a prior attack
  • Turkish security forces found sarin in the homes of Jabhat al Nusra fighters.
  • Evidence of video manipulation in the Ghouta attacks.
  • Parents identified children in photos as those kidnapped in Latakia, two weeks earlier.
  • Chemical weapons (CW) had been supplied by Saudis to ‘rebel’ groups, some locals had died due to mishandling.
  • Three of five CW attacks were ‘against soldiers’ or ‘against soldiers and civilians’.”

Guardian Whitewashes Reality

The Guardian pointedly chooses to disregard that the Syrian government is fighting a terrorism thrust upon the civilians of Syria by the NATO-Turkish-Gulf-Zionist alliance, including the same terrorists in eastern Aleppo which the Guardian whitewashes while portraying their White Helmets as credible ‘rescuers’, instead of US/UK-backed and financed propagandists and props for death squads.

Terrorism is daily and massively felt in Aleppo, whose over 1.5 million civilians on a daily basis are subject to a bombardment of Hell Cannon-fired explosive gas canisters, and a combination of missiles, rockets, mortars, and explosive bullets, among other foreign-supplied munitions, by the terrorists occupying eastern Aleppo, who the Syrian army is fighting. CONTINUE READING