“ZEINAB, SHE WAS FORCED TO WATCH THE MASSACRE OF 116 CHILDREN”–VANESSA BEELEY ON TERRORISTS’ MASSACRE OF FOUA KAFRAYA CIVILIANS

In Gaza

Apr 21, 2017, UK Column News

21st Century Wire’s Vanessa Beeley speaks to Mike Robinson about the recent murder of children enticed off a bus with the promise of food. This was the most obscene war crime and brings the conflict in Syria to a new low.

At the centre of it all are Boris Johnson sponsored White Helmets. Please share this video, and with a general election in the UK, ask some hard questions of all prospective MPs.

Read more here:

RASHIDEEN MASSACRE: Children Lured to their Slaughter by NATO State Terrorists

21st Century Wire says…

On April 15th 2017, the people of Kafarya and Foua were attacked, their children mown down deliberately, by a suicide bomb or expolosive detonation, that targeted these innocent children who had been lured to their deaths by NATO and Gulf state terrorists, including Ahrar al Sham and Nusra Front (Al Qaeda). Mothers had to watch from behind the windows of the buses they had been imprisoned in for 48 hours, while strangers, terrorists, picked up their children, their wounded, bleeding, mutilated children, and piled them up in the backs of trucks and Turkish ambulances before driving them away from the horrific scene and stealing them from their distraught, powerless mothers.

Zeinab

“This is Zeinab, she was forced to watch the massacre of 116 children through the windows of a bus while the NATO and Gulf state terrorists, collected the dead, dying and mutilated bodies of her community’s children and flung them in the back of trucks and Turkish ambulances, before driving them to Turkey. She has 10 members of her family still missing. She has no idea where they are.

She gave her courageous and emotional testimony to us in Jebrin registration centre, where the survivors of the 15th April, suicide bomb attack, were taken for shelter after this horrific event, described by CNN as a “hiccup”.

I speak about part of her testimony with RT yesterday who also used my interviews in their news feed. Unlike corporate media, RT investigate these atrocities and honour the voices of the Syrian people.

Telegraph
The Telegraph edited out this appalling and callous phrasing immediately after the RT interview.

The Telegraph described the dead Syrian babies as “Syrian Government supporters” in an attempt to whitewash the UK Regime terrorist crimes by proxy and to erase the existence of these innocent children from our consciousness..by the familiar dehumanization process that we have witnessed every time the various NATO and Gulf state extremist carry out mass murder of Syrian civilians.” ~ Vanessa Beeley

(Photo: Tommy Bergset Solvedt)

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Bombed out remains of one of the buses that had been carrying evacuated civilians from Kafarya and Foua to Rashideen holding centre. (Photo: Vanessa Beeley)

Vanessa Beeley, associate editor at 21st Century Wire, was present at the scene and provided video footage of the witness and survivor testimony to RT for use in the news section. She also spoke to RT about the heartbreaking accounts given to her by Zeinab, a mother, from these besieged Idlib villages of Kafarya and Foua, who had seen the carnage and who still has 10 missing relatives, who were taken to Turkey by the waiting ambulances.  A full report, and subtitled video will follow shortly, when internet and time allows, but for now, here is the report from RT and the interview at the end of the report.

For more details on Kafarya and Foua please read Eva Bartlett’s article: The Children of Kafarya and Foua are Crying in the Dark

RT Report:

Terrorists lured evacuees out of buses with snacks before blast – Aleppo attack witnesses:

Eyewitnesses to the bomb attack on a refugee convoy near Aleppo that killed dozens of children said the militants lured people out of the vehicles with snacks before the explosion, and also stopped them from escaping the blast site.

A powerful explosion hit several buses full of people leaving militant-held towns and villages outside Aleppo last Saturday, killing over 100 people, including dozens of children, and injuring scores more.

Following the attack, Vanessa Beeley of the 21st Century Wire website gathered first-hand accounts from those who survived the assault. People told her that the militants did their utmost to increase the death toll. The exclusive videos she provided to RT shed more light on the incident.

“Just before the explosion, a strange car got from the militants’ checkpoint. They said they were bringing snacks for children,” the bus driver who was in the convoy said.

“Then they got out of the car and started shouting, ‘Who has children? Who has children?’”

The driver said the militants knew for sure that the children “haven’t seen biscuits and crisps for so long” as they were under siege. “People have been stuck in buses for 48 hours as the rebels didn’t let us out,” he noted. A woman said that she and other evacuees were held in the buses “like prisoners,” adding that they were only allowed to get out and stretch 10 minutes before the explosion.

Many people, including children, left the buses and approached the car when the blast hit the convoy.

One of evacuees said that the militants “were throwing potato chips on the site of the future blast. One of the terrorists said that it was food for the infidels.”

The driver recalled that “there were Ahrar ash-Sham and Jabhat al-Nusra [Al-Nusra Front], and some factions of the Free Syrian Army [FSA]…”

According to another witness, “the Ahrar ash-Sham fighters didn’t hide their faces, while Jabhat al-Nusra were always wearing masks. One could only see their eyes,” one of the eyewitnesses said.

WARNING:Graphic and distressing footage from the attack ~

There were many foreigners among the terrorists – “Uzbeks, Turks, people from Chechnya, Saudis and Qataris. One could judge on their appearance; their language,” another evacuee added.

“When the blast rocked the area, people rushed into the woods but militants surrounded them and forced back to the buses,” the bus driver said.

A female evacuee recalled that “the militants told us that terrorists from another group were shelling our buses and that we must flee towards the bushes… but then they said that the bushes were mined and found ourselves trapped.”

Another woman also told Beeley that even before the explosion, four yellow Turkish ambulances were present at the scene for some reason. After the blast, the ambulances started picking up the dead and injured, only to take them to an unknown location.

“We don’t know where they [the children] are. They’re gone. There are no bodies. We’ve searched for them, but with no result,” one of the witnesses said.

Many relatives of those missing still know nothing of their whereabouts, other witnesses said. Some people told Beeley that the controversial White Helmets were also seen at the blast site, retrieving bodies of Al-Nusra and Ahrar al-Sham militants, but apparently leaving injured civilians.

Beeley, who has consistently covered the Syrian war, also filmed people’s testimonies about their escape from the rebel-held areas. The evacuees boarded the buses on Friday in the Rashideen neighborhood of Aleppo, but were not allowed out of the vehicles for nearly three days.

Many of them, however, were happy to leave as “this place turned into a terrorists’ hotbed,” one woman said.

[Some] international organizations have already condemned the attack on the humanitarian convoy in the strongest terms.

“We must draw from this not only anger, but renewed determination to reach all the innocent children throughout Syria with help and comfort,” said UNICEF’s executive director, Anthony Lake.

“And draw from it also the hope that all those with the heart and the power to end this war will do so.”

However, Beeley told RT that not many in the West followed the UN’s example in decrying the attack.

“We’ve just witnessed one of the most heinous crimes of our lifetime, and yet corporate… there’s no international condemnation from governments, from NGOs, from the media,” she said.

On the contrary, the media is making an attempt to “whitewash this utterly abhorrent” incident, in which, according to Beeley’s information, 116 children lost their lives.

Full video interview. Watch ~

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READ MORE SYRIA NEWS AT: 21st Century Wire Syria Files

READ MORE KAFARYA AND FOUA NEWS AT: 21st Century Wire Kafarya and Foua Files

READ MORE ON THE WHITE HELMETS AT: 21st Century Wire White Helmet Files

Other Related Links:

Kevork Almassian of Syriana Analysis: Video Analysis: MSM & Al-Qaeda Presstitutes Gone Disgusting Over Kafriya Massacre

-Eva Bartlett: The Children of Kafarya and Foua are Crying in the Dark

Vanessa Beeley writings on Kafraya and Foua

-Eva Bartlett: Untold Suffering in Foua and Kafraya: Two Northwestern Syrian Villages Under Siege and Assault by NATO’s Terrorists Part 1

-Eva Bartlett: Untold Suffering in Foua and Kafarya-Part 2

U.S. Not Outraged With Terrorist Who Lured Children With Food, Then Blew Them Up”

By Eva Bartlett

April 20, 2017 “Information Clearing House” –  “In Gaza” – With thanks to Jimmy Dore for his continued honest, brave commentary. He is well-informed and not afraid to speak the truth about what’s happening in Syria, the media lies, the culprit states, the loaded lexicon. His information is spot on, save the initial mention that the evacuation was not in Raqqa but from Idlib’s Foua and Kafraya villages to Aleppo, via terrorist-occupied areas, and the terrorists comprise not just al-Nusra but also members of the terror coalitions of  Jaysh al-Fattah (the so-called “Army of Conquest”), and Ahrar al-Sham (Liberation of the Levant Movement) along with other “moderates” of the umbrella organization Jabhat al-Islamiyah (the Islamic Front)

That caveat aside, Dore critically calls out the media liars, the presstitutes, for their blatant lies, their obfuscations, their intentionally misleading lexicon: ‘rebels’ ‘regime’ ‘hiccup’… (“Hiccup?? Despite this hiccup? So, when we thought it was Assad gassing kids—which was not even 126 of them—so, when somebody working with us kills 80 kids, on purpose, blows civilians trying to leave a war zone, that was agreed to, it’s a ‘hiccup’…) and the war propaganda. “It couldn’t be more obvious to me that the way the media is reporting, especially the United States, referring to terrorists as ‘freedom fighters’ or ‘rebels’ or ‘moderates’…they’re ‘moderate’ crazy people…”

Listen for yourself, and please share his video

*A note: latest updates put the number of murdered civilians from al-Foua and Kafraya at well over 100 (on the ground source actually says 200 civilians killed, of whom 116 children. Waiting for confirmation).

Related info on the murder of Foua and Kafraya civilians, by the west’s mercenaries: No ‘Red Lines’ After Western Backed Terrorists Massacre of Idlib’s Foua Civilians

Related info on the unsubstantiated accusations that the Syrian government used chemical weapons in Khan Sheikhoun: MIT Professor Emeritus Dispels Lies of White House ‘Intelligence’ Report on Khan Shaykhun, Syria

The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Information Clearing House.

 

AL NUSRA SAFELY EVACUATES FROM AL-WAER, HOMS (DAYS AFTER TERRORISTS MASSACRE OVER 100 CIVILIAN EVACUEES OF FOUA AND KAFRAYA)

Source

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Photo by Vanessa Beeley, who writes: “The look of hate. A Nusra Front terrorist waits in Al Waer, Homs to board the buses that will take them to safety in Idlib and then Turkey, the destination of their choice. Syrian Government justice and Amnesty compared to UK/US/NATO insanity”

British independent journalist Vanessa Beeley was on April 18 with an international delegation in al-Waer, Homs, during the 5th evacuation of terrorists of al-Nusra and other militants occupying the area for years.
In March 2017, Syrian journalist Mohamed Ali reported from al-Waer, during one of the earlier evacuations, noting that the evacuation was being done by Syrian Red Crescent, Russian military police and Syrian security personnel and that no UN personnel were involved.

Regarding that evacuation, Syrian media, SANA, reported:

“150 persons from al-Wa’er neighborhood in Homs had their status settled according to amnesty decree No. 15 for 2016 and in light of the reconciliation agreement reached last Monday.

Over 1400 gunmen and members of their families, who rejected to join the agreement, have left al-Waer neighborhood on the western outskirts of Homs city.

They left for the northern countryside of Homs province in the framework of implementing the reconciliation agreement that was reached in the neighborhood, paving the way for the return of all the governmental institutions to it.”

Of the April 18 evacuation, Vanessa Beeley wrote:
“Today in Al Waer, Homs we witnessed the evacuation of Nusra Front fighters and families to Jarablus and then Turkey. Under the Syrian government Amnesty and Reconciliation agreement they were able to leave with their weapons, safely to their destination of choice. In stark contrast to the horrific treatment of civilian evacuees from Kafarya and Foua who were massacred in Rashideen by a suicide bombing carried out by US funded extremists. We in the ‘civilized’ west bring barbarism to a country that is consistently demonstrating the meaning of true civilization, dignity and humanity…They were successfully taken to Idlib as a first step on their way to Turkey, under the Syrian government Amnesty and Reconciliation policy, 2010 people have been evacuated from Al Waer, including 519 Nusra front terrorists.”
[Related: Vanessa Beeley’s “Images from after Rashideen massacre, buses and survivors who were taken to Jebrin after NATO and Gulf state terrorists had torn their lives apart.”

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[My article: No ‘Red Lines’ After US-Backed Terrorists Massacre Idlib’s Foua Civilians]

Of the April 18 evacuation, SANA reported:
“Homs Governorate on Tuesday finished the evacuation of the fifth batch of militants and some of their families from the western parts of al-Waer neighborhood in a step towards clearing the neighborhood of weapons and militants and restoring state establishments to it. 
SANA reporter said that the fifth batch included 519 militants and hundreds of their families who reject the reconciliation agreement. The reporter added that 55 buses transported the militants and their families towards the northeastern countryside of Aleppo under the supervision of the Syrian Arab Red Crescent, the Internal Security Forces and the Russian Military Police. 
On Monday afternoon, the fifth batch of militants and some of their families started to leave al-Waer neighborhood as Homs Governor Talal al-Barazi stressed that by the end of the current month the reconciliation agreement in al-Waer neighborhood will be accomplished completely to start the rehabilitation of the damaged facilities and infrastructure inside the neighborhood…”
More al-Waer photos by Vanessa Beeley:

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 In December 2015 I visited al-Waer. Even while al-Nusra and other terrorists occupied al-Waer, the Syrian government was sending in food and medicine, providing bread, and services like electricity and water were better than in greater Aleppo under bombardment from terrorists.
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On that December visit, I wrote:

Listening to my recording from en route to al-Waer, Homs, a couple of weeks ago. The Syrian journalist from Damascus with me cautions:

“We should be more careful now, because everyone on the other side can see us very well.”

I asked how many terrorists remained. A Homs journalist, Hayat, tells me:

“There are those (terrorists) who did not want to participate in the Reconciliation, to leave al-Waer. The people who left were 447 civilians and 100 fighters (without guns) who left with a civilian convoy; 172 fighters (with guns) left–those fighters don’t want to make Reconciliation with the government. 20 wounded (fighters and civilians) needing emergency care left in ambulances. Around 2,200 or more fighters remain in al-Waer.”

Getting closer to al-Waer, the driver teases, “shall we enter?” “We are in the front-line now,” he says. Hayat, gets serious, saying:

“It’s not safe, at any moment they could do anything, break the ceasefire.”

The Damascus journalist with me says, “We are beside the fighters, we are too close to the fighters now, we must be careful.”

We arrive at the last military checkpoint, the entrance to al-Waer.

The bread factory at the entrance to al-Waer produces the bread for the population within, wheat provided by the Syrian government.

According to Hayat, the Homs journalist I was with, although 292 terrorists (as well as 447 civilians) left al-Waer in a December agreement, 2200+ terrorists remain within al-Waer, with another 150,000 civilians–from a population that was 750,000. The Syrian government continues to supply not only wheat/bread, but also electricity and water, although according to Hayat, the people inside do not pay:

“They don’t pay for power, water… the area is not under control of government. Fighters don’t allow people to pay—in order to cripple the government. If people paid and were found out, fighters would kill them.”

*At the end of this clip, Hayat is telling me that the people from inside al-Waer will come to get the bread, and that the boy in the background is from al-Waer.

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Tariq, a Palestinian resident of al-Waer, born in 1957, is originally from Akka. Of his life in Syria, he (like every other Palestinian friend or person I’ve met in Syria) told me: “The Syrian government treats me as well as a Syrian.”

**In this photo, he was picking up bread to take back to his family in al-Waer (who called his mobile as we spoke, concerned about where he was since he had taken longer than usual, stopping to talk with me).

Related: A 2014 article on Reconciliation movement in Syria, including an interview with the Minister of Reconciliation, Dr. Ali Haidar.

In contrast to the long-occupied al-Waer, the Old City of Homs saw terrorists evacuated to elsewhere in Syria in May 2014, enabling residents of Homs to start to rebuild their lives, the reign of terror for them over. Excerpts from my June 2014 visit to Old Homs, interviewing survivors of the terrorists’ occupation:

 Some of those residents who had stayed on in the Old City of Homs during the siege talked to IPS about their ordeals and losses at the hands of armed groups, including Nusra and Farooq brigades. Many of them argued that what had happened in Homs was not revolution, as Dutch Jesuit priest Frans van der Lugt had argued before he was assassinated, just one month before Homs was liberated.

  

“I was baptised in this church, got married in it, and baptised my children in it,” said Abu Nabeel, a resident of Homs’ Old City. The St. George Church, with its crumbling walls, is one of 11 reported destroyed in the Old City. It no longer has its wooden ceiling and ornately-carved wooden ceiling panels and wall lattice lie in heaps outside the ancient church.

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“Most of the damage is from the last days just before the insurgents left,” he said. “But we’ll rebuild.” That rebuilding has already begun, with residents scraping away rubble and re-paving small areas that had been damaged.

The arched interior of the St. Mary’s Church (Um al-Zinnar) bears the char marks of its burning by retreating insurgents. Like many others, the church was looted of objects and vandalised, with the insurgents leaving sectarian graffiti on the walls. “Symbols related to Christianity were removed. Even from inside houses. If you had a picture of the Virgin Mary, they removed it,” said Abu Nabeel.

Volunteers have now planted a garden in its courtyard, which they say is an attempt to “bring some beauty back” to Homs.

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A statue in the courtyard of the Church of the 40 Martyrs stood headless. “This was one of the founding fathers of the church, so they cut the head off the statue,” said Abu Nabeel.

The church itself was less damaged than others, but Abu Nabeel noted that “they burned the pews, for heat.”

Outside the door of an old but intact building, a few men hosed down the street and repaved small sections of the walk.

“This was one of the biggest restaurants in the Old City of Homs. People used to hold weddings here,” Abu N said of the building. “It was used as a headquarters for the insurgents. There was some damage inside, but they have already fixed a lot of it.”

Youth volunteers on a street in Bustan al-Diwan painted over the insurgents’ graffitti and used shattered glass from the Church of Saida Salaam to create a colourful mosaic.

Rubble which littered the streets had been swept into heaps in the centre of some lanes, allowing people to pass.

A man brushed rubble off the second story ledge of his building, one of few people around in the Old City in spite of the calm.

Further along an Old City lane, a blown-out wall revealed a burned pickup truck the insurgents used in their attacks, and the school beyond which they had occupied until the day of their departure from Old Homs. The bombed truck was but one example of the final destruction of retreating armed gangs.

Abu Nabeel explained that the insurgents mined the area before leaving. “They left booby-trapped explosives in the houses, all over, even behind paintings on the wall.”

In the courtyard of the Jesuit church sat a lone plastic chair adorned with flowers and a photo of Father Frans van der Lugt, the Jesuit priest assassinated on April 7, 2014.

The chair in which Father Frans van der Lugt was assassinated by an insurgent with a point-blank shot to his head.

 

Nazim Kanawati, who knew and respected the Jesuit, arrived moments after the 75-year-old priest had been shot in the back of the head.” We were surrounded and under siege. This was the only place we could go to. Everyone loved it here,” he said.

“Father Frans was a peace-maker and played an important role in arranging the evacuation of civilians from the Old City during the siege. He was trusted by both sides, and didn’t distinguish between Christians and Muslims. He was concerned with humanity.”

Like Father Frans, Kanawati refused to leave Homs while others fled. “I didn’t want to leave, I’m a Syrian, I had the right to be there.”

Although he chose to stay in the Old City, Father Frans was critical of the insurgents. In January 2012, he had written: “From the start I saw armed demonstrators marching along in the protests, who began to shoot at the police first. Very often the violence of the security forces has been a reaction to the brutal violence of the armed rebels.”

“People in Homs were already armed and prepared before the protests began,” said Kanawati. “If they hadn’t been planning for the protests from the beginning, the people wouldn’t have had the quantity of arms that they had.”

Abu Nabeel explained that in addition to the Hamidiyeh district where various old churches are to be found, Christians in other areas occupied by the armed insurgents also fled. “There were an estimated 100,000 Christians living in the Old City of Homs before it was taken over by terrorists. Most fled in February 2012. By March, only 800 had stayed, and by the end just over 100 remained,” he said.

The siege that the Syrian army enforced on the Old City in an attempt to drive out the insurgents had a drastic effect on the daily lives of those remaining.

“Suddenly, we didn’t have electricity or water. We had to wait for the water trucks to refill tanks,” said Kanawati. “There were many elderly who couldn’t leave their homes. We’d take food and medicine to people in the community.”

Before Homs was freed of the armed insurgents, who were also stealing from homes, life had become impossible. “There was food at the beginning, but it started to run out. At the end we had nothing, we ate whatever we could collect,” said Kanawati.

No one expected the priest himself to be killed, Kanawati attested. “Someone who was probably in his twenties came here, his face covered, came and ordered Father Frans to go with him. Father Frans refused. So the man told him to sit on this chair, and shot him in the head.”

Abu Nabeel added another piece of information regarding van der Lugt’s murder.

“Three or four days before Father Frans was killed, the Syrian army had targeted a vehicle filled with explosives, which the insurgents were planning to send into the city. Many of the insurgent leaders killed were less extreme that the foreign insurgents, and had been protecting the church. After their deaths, the other insurgents went to the church and demanded Father Frans hand over the valuables residents in the area had left with him for safe-keeping. He refused, so they killed him.”

Mohammed, a Syrian from the Qussoor district of Homs, is now one of the reported 6.5 million internally-displaced Syrians.

“I’m a refugee in Latakia now. I work in Homs, two days a week, and then return to Latakia to stay at my friend’s home. I left my house at the very end of 2011, before the area was taken over by al-Nusra and al-Farooq brigades.”

He spoke of the sectarian nature of the insurgents and protests from the very beginning in 2011.

“I was renting a home in a different neighbourhood of Homs, while renovating my own house. Just beyond my balcony there were protests that did not call for ‘freedom’ or even overthrowing the ‘regime’.They chanted sectarian mottos, they said they would fill al-Zahara – an Alawi neighbourhood – with blood. And also al-Nezha – where there are many Alawis and Christians.”

“My aunt lives in another neighbourhood nearby. She’s Allawi and her husband is Sunni. Because she is Allawi, the ‘rebels’ wanted to kill her two sons. I chose Bashar al-Assad, so they said, ‘we will kill you, because you chose him.’”

The windows and door handle to the home of Aymen and Zeinat al-Akhras were missing, but the house itself was intact. Zeinat, a pharmacist, and Aymen, a chemical engineer, survived the presence of the armed men and the resulting siege on the Old City.

Every space in their small sitting was filled with the books and boxes fleeing family and neighbours, entrusted to the Akhras siblings who chose to weather the storm.

“We didn’t leave, we chose not to.” said Zeinat.

“Our family shop is about 75 years old now,” Aymen added. “We didn’t want to lose it or the merchandise.” Much of it he brought to the home, moving from shop through a hole in the wall to the back yard, so the insurgents wouldn’t see and steal the goods.

The area was taken over in two stages, they explained. “First, the insurgents reached near our house, while the Syrian army was on the other side. Fifteen days later, the insurgents brought more forces and arms and took over the area, killing all of the Syrian soldiers in that area. In February, 2012, they took over the Old City completely,” Aymen said.

Aymen and Zeinat al-Akhras in their Old City home in Homs.

Zeinat spoke of the power cuts, which sometimes lasted give days, and the lack of cooking gas.

“We started using the wood stove. We’d put the pot on at 10 am, eat at 4 pm… It didn’t matter that we didn’t have electricity for the fridge—we had no food to put in it,” she said.

“I’ve gained five kilos!” Zeinat said. “I dropped to 34 kilos. Aymen told me to weigh myself. I got on the scale and said, ‘What’s 34 kilos?’. A ten-year-old weighs more than that! And Aymen was 43 kilos. For a man, 43 kilos,” she said laughing.

The drastic drop was not due to ill-preparedness. To the contrary, Zeinat said they had enough food to last a year.

“We were twelve siblings with eight houses in the area, and the family house. We all had stores of food.”

But the stores of food didn’t survive the looting of the insurgents.

“Thirty-eight times they came to steal our food. The first couple of times, they knocked on the door, after that they just entered with guns. The last things they took were our dried peas, our cracked wheat, our olives, finally our za’atar (wild thyme). We started to eat grass and whatever greens we could find in February, 2014, and that’s all we had till Homs was liberated,” Zeinat said.

“The last time they came all we had were some spices. I was putting the spices on the grass and weeds that we were eating at that point, to give them some flavour. They even took the spices. They didn’t leave us anything.”

The insurgents also stole valuables. “Money, gold, and they took my passport,” Zeinat laughed. “What do they want with it?”

Abu Abdu had a home in a district of Homs between Khaldia and Bayada

“I was never interested in politics, I’d always change the channel if it was news. But when the events started here, and we began to see the lies, my sense of nationality awoke and I began to look at the news all the time,” he said.

Showing video and photos of his area, he explained, “This is our apartment building, we were on the third floor. I took this footage around May 10, after the insurgents left Old Homs.”

“They took our personal belongings, our money, they stole everything, even the pumps used to pump water up to the higher floors. They stole the electrical wiring, the electricity meters, the taps in the kitchen and bathroom, the engine of the washing machine… they couldn’t take the whole machine so they took the engine. They took the ceiling fan, the wall tiles…They broke my daughter’s wooden jewelry box to get the 100 Liras in it of different Syrian coins her fiance had given her as a gift. All that effort for 100 Syrian pounds (about $1.50),” he said.

Meanwhile, despite the return of calm to Homs’ Old City, insurgents continue their campaign of car-bombing civilian areas of Homs. Tens were killed by car bombs and rocket attacks in June alone.

On June 19, Sana news reported six killed and forty injured in a car bombing, as well as seven killed, 25 injured six days prior.

The Syrian government, however, continues efforts to restore normality to the city. On June 26, Sana news reported that the Minister of Culture, Lubanah Mshaweh, said plans were underway for the restoration of Homs’ Khalid Ibin al-Walid Mosque, St. Mary (Um al-Zinnar) and 40 Martyrs churches.

Also on June 26, the Nusra brigades, an al-Qaeda affiliate and one of the main factions which occupied Homs, is reported to have pledged allegiance to the Takfiri extremist Islamic State in Iraq and Syria(ISIS).

This allegiance to a group documented to have beheaded, mutilated, crucified and flogged Syrians and Iraqis gives more credence to Homs’ residents’ opinion that the events in Syria are no revolution.

Homs residents speak of car bombings in Apr 2014

Homs heflah to celebrate June 3 Presidential elections

“Freedom”: Homs resident speaks of the early days of the “crisis”

Homs: “We wanted to protect our house”


“When I visited in June 2014, after the terrorists had been extracted from most of Homs, the destruction and vandalism I saw were immense. Even back then, as soon as the terrorists were gone, Old City residents were already returning in trickles to begin the cleanup and think about re-building their lives.

Now, a year-and-a-half later, while immense reconstruction remains, there was a significant improvement. I saw new shops opened, and saw homes, stores, streets, and churches decorated in the spirit of Christmas.

Christmas lights dangled over Old City lanes and in church courtyards. A friend from Homs later sent me photos of the streets lit up at night, and of the once-burned St. Mary’s Church (Um al-Zinnar) now repaired and decorated, and filled with worshippers, a youth choir and band.

At the Old City’s Jesuit Church, new portraits of Dutch priest, Father Frans van der Lugt, assassinated in April 2014 by the West’s “moderate” terrorists. The church also had a simple Christmas tree and home-made nativity scene, the grotto walls of which were made of crumpled brown paper.

Two well-known restaurants, which suffered differing degrees of destruction, have been re-opened. Beit al-Agha, greatly-damaged by the terrorists, is now coming back to life, although repairs are still needed. Al-Bustan restaurant, which was completely ravaged, is fully re-built and open to customers. Photos from al-Hamidiya Community Facebook page show a packed restaurant during Christmas, and dancing at night. The page shows celebrations in the different churches and streets of old Homs.

In Saha al-Majaa, an Old City square, I saw six locals adding finishing touches to the Christmas tree they’d crafted using scavenged and bought materials. In a nearby room, full-size nativity scene figures, made of sponge and cloth and other basic materials were stored until the display went up. Neighbourhood residents had chipped in for fabric, bought from Tartous.

“Come, tomorrow at 5 pm and you’ll see the finished display,” I was invited, but didn’t have the chance to get back. However, photos on social media show their creative efforts have paid off: in this square where despair was once deep, hope is flourishing anew.”

NO ‘RED LINES’ AFTER WESTERN BACKED TERRORISTS MASSACRE OF IDLIB’S FOUA CIVILIANS

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Photo of civilians murdered and wounded after terrorist attack, via U-News.

-Eva Bartlett, April 16, 2017, SOTT.net

There are apparently no ‘red lines’ when it comes to the documented terrorism of death squads in Syria, be they the Free Syrian Army (FSA, who committed some of the most heinous massacres of Syrian civilians in 2011, in 2012, in 2013…), Nour al-Din al-Zenki child-beheaders, or Jaysh al-Islam (with their love of caging civilians to use as human shields and firing mortars on civilian areas of Damascus and outskirts).

On the afternoon of April 15, terrorist factions attacked buses carrying civilians from the long-besieged western Syria villages of Kafraya and Foua. Thus far, the death toll is reported to be more than 100 civilians (with some estimating a much higher number) [updated]. On April 15, Sputnik reported:

“The number of victims [in the explosion] is at least 70; over 130 are injured. It is difficult to say as there are many burnt bodies and body parts around the damaged buses,” noting that “hit the Rashidin area on Aleppo’s outskirts. The bus was waiting for entering the city of Aleppo.”

“The blast supposedly was caused by a suicide attacker who detonated an explosive device. The car with the attacker approached the buses disguised as a vehicle transporting food.”

Al Ikhbaria, Syrian tv, has multiple updates on the carnage that was the terrorist attack on these buses carrying civilians, including scenes of the injured civilians in hospital.

A witness to the massacre told a Syrian journalist (shared by journalist Maytham al-Ashkar):

“The ‘rebels’ brought a bus full of crisps. They tried to gather as many kids as possible around the vehicle. Then we heard a really loud explosion. A lot of children were killed, many were injured.”

“Our Blood is Cheap”: Why Foua and Kafraya Don’t Merit Fair Media Coverage:

A journalist with U-News who sent photos and videos of the massacre of civilians asked the anguished rhetorical question one asks in such repeated situations: “Where are the mainstream media? Why don’t they report the barbaric and cowardly terrorist attack on Foua and Kafraya?”

The answer is that the genuine torment these civilians have endured for years will never be fairly reported, it does not serve the agenda of demonizing the leader of Syria and the national army in order to win western public opinion for yet another ‘humanitarian’ intervention which destroys the Syrian nation and installs chaos in the place of the legitimate government.

None of the people terrorized by these mercenaries of the NATO/Zionist/Gulf/Turkish alliance over the years will be respected or recognized by the Western press, be they women and children victims of rocket attacks, sniping and mortar terrorism in and around Damascus; Syrian and allied journalists assassinated by the ‘moderates’; civilians of Aleppo for years bombed, sniped at and besieged by terrorist factions; or especially liberated civilians from eastern areas of Aleppo whose horrific testimonies directly negate the myth of ‘rebels’, ‘moderates’, or the falsity of Assad as the problem and the Syrian Arab Army as the ‘aggressor’.

As with civilian victims of suicide bombs in Beirut and Homs, Jableh and Tartous, (which I visited in July 2016) the civilians of Foua and Kafraya are rendered by the Western corporate media as either invisible or a sect not worthy of human consideration. Ironically, while Foua and Kafraya may contain a predominate number of Shia Muslims, residents of the villages have told me how they intermarried with their neighbouring Sunni Syrians, and shared the celebrations of other faiths’, as is common in secular Syria.

In August 2015, I began to write about the villages, becoming aware of their very serious plight by a friend from Foua and journalists and civilians I came to know from both villages.

The villages, less than 10 km northeast of Idlib, had already been suffering an over 4 year long siege by al-Nusra and affiliates.

“Until late March, residents—although surrounded by militant factions—still had an access road, thus supplies for their survival. With the militants’ occupation of Idlib at the end of March, the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) had to withdraw forces from bases in the province. Foua and Kafarya became utterly isolated.”

Their being fully besieged and near-daily bombed, and the deprivation of critical medicines and essential life needs has been met with a comparative yawn, an utter silence and disregard of not only the corporate media but also the human rights bodies purporting to care about Syrian civilians.

In January 2016, when overnight media began talking about Madaya (one of the villages from where ‘rebels’ were recently safely evacuated with the full aid and protection of the Syrian government), they also pointedly ignored the dire situation of residents of Foua and Kafraya because both of those villages were under siege by al-Nusra, Jaysh al-Fattah (the so-called “Army of Conquest”), and Ahrar al-Sham (Liberation of the Levant Movement) along with other “moderates” of the umbrella organization Jabhat al-Islamiyah (the Islamic Front).

While the Syrian government was accused of mass starvation in Madaya, this was exposed as false in December 2016, when the terrorist factions were exposed as the real culprits, hoarding food (and medicines) and holding civilians hostage. This also occurred in the Old City of Homs, which I visited repeatedly, including one month after the Syrian government enabled safe evacuation of the terrorists who had been occupying the Old City and starving the remaining civilians within.

Parts one and two of my initial reports on the villages outline the full, debilitating siege the approximately 20,000 civilians have endured since March 2015 (although the villages were on-off besieged since 2013) and the deliberately sectarian slant of Western media reports in their scant reporting of the situation there. In contrast, as my Kafraya friend told me:

“In that area of Syria there are minorities living together, from about 1,000 years ago. In Kafraya and Foua there are Shia. Before this war, the people of Foua and neighbouring Binnish were very close, they intermarried, celebrated festivals together.

At the time that this all started in Syria, I was home, still a student. We studied at a school in Ma’rat Mesreen, which was a mostly Sunni city—many of them pro-government, by the way—and some Shia. Like with Binnish, our people were friends with those in Ma’rat Mesreen, intermarried with them.

My uncle was working in al-Raqqa, but when the militants took over, he and others went back to Kafraya. The original population of Kafraya was around 10,000. Now, it’s much much more, with IDPs from various areas, like Ma’rat Mesreen, and including many Sunni pro-government Syrians from other villages, but also Shia from surrounding areas.”

Syrian journalist Iyad Khuder spoke of the tradition unity of the villages and surrounding area.

“People from these two villages have always had good relations with their neighbors—they used to share the Islamic feasts together. No one used to ask about religion, or even to mention the words ‘Sunni, Shia’. But the extremist minority who controlled northern Syria are indoctrinated by Saudi Arabia’s Wahhabi ideology. So, they asked Kafraya and Foua (as a test) to join the ‘revolution’ against the ‘regime’. The people replied, ‘You are free to revolt, it’s your choice. But we also have our choice and we believe it’s a plot targeting the whole country.’ So, the ‘rebels’ consider them targets, have tried to conquer their villages, and have kidnapped many of them.”

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Photo by Eva Bartlett: Gas canister bombs, terrorist-fired by Hell Cannons, litter the roads leading to Aleppo. Terrorist factions have for years fired these deadly bombs on civilian areas of Aleppo and elsewhere in Syria, to complicit media silence. Aleppo head of Forensics Dr. Zaher Hajo reports 11, 000 civilians dead from such terrorist bombings, snipings, missiles, mortars and more.

Completely surrounded by terrorist factions which near-daily bombed the villages with mortars, Hell Cannon-fired gas canister bombs, and snipings of the sort that left 4 and 6 year old boys(deprived by the terrorists’ siege of medical care) on death’s bed, the siege has meant civilians with critical, but treatable, illnesses are not able to get appropriate medical care, and that families are deprived of sustenance, clean water, heating in winter, and the essential needs of life.

MSM Reporting on Terrorists Murder of Civilians: ‘bus hit’:

The Western corporate media’s reporting on massacres like the recent suicide bombings of buses full of civilians in Syria deserves some scathing critique. Consider these lines from an article by Lizzie Dearden for the UK Independent:

“An car bomb has hit a convoy of buses carrying civilians evacuated from besieged towns in Syria, killing at least 24 people.

The blast hit the Rashidin area on the outskirts of Aleppo, where dozens of buses carrying mostly Shia Muslim families from pro-government villages were waiting to enter the city.

Photos that were too graphic to publish showed a huge fire raging next to bodies scattered on the ground next to charred buses with blown-out windows, including those of children.”

If the area in question were a terrorist-occupied area, Dearden’s report would read something like this:

“A regime-dropped barrel bomb has killed a convoy of buses carrying innocent civilians, mostly women and children, who were being evacuated from rebel areas of Syria. The deadly 8.0 magntitude Hiroshima barrel bomb hit Sunni Muslim families from freedom-loving rebel areas…” etc. etc.

Do note in the reporting of ‘journalists’ like Dearden and other presstitutes, the downplaying of actual documented Syrian civilian deaths at the hands of terrorists dubbed ‘rebels’. Do note the sectarian language (rejected by most Syrians). Do note the implication that acts of terrorism on Syrians in government secured areas of the country must be considered as not credible (but physics-defying alleged school-bombings or alleged chemical weapons attacks should be believed). Also note the kind of reporting on this attack that was produced by CNN. While stating that “no group has claimed responsibility”, CNN felt the need to get a word from that paragon of immorality, Abdul Rahman of the utterly discredited ‘Syrian Observatory for Human Rights’:

“During a televised interview, Rami Abdul Rahman, director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said a suicide bomber claimed he was carrying food items and blew himself up in a fuel station. Abdul Rahman said he doesn’t believe the Syrian regime is behind the attack. He said the regime kills scores of people daily using all types of weaponry and doesn’t need to kill its own sympathizers.”

Yes indeed, just in case you were distracted by the US-backed terrorist bombing of buses full of civilians, CNN used the pathetic quisling Rahman to remind you of the ‘evils of the regime’ and to admit that, despite the ‘evil’ of Assad, he has not yet found a need to kill his own sympathiziers.

Regarding the “photos that were too graphic to publish” by the Independent; please explain to the families of these mutilated Syrians why their graphic murders were too distasteful to Western sensitivities when graphic images of dead and injured children are splashed across Western media broadsheets when the alleged author of such attacks is the Syrian or Russian military.

Britain’s state-owned BBC, no stranger to the propagation war porn when it serves the NATO agenda, headlined rather blandly: “Syria war: Huge bomb kills dozens of evacuees in Syria“.

Had the bombing in question been attributed to the Syrian army, or Russians, you can bet the headline would have read something like:

“Murderous Regime Bombs Innocent Civilians in Rebel-held Area Just Days After Worst Chemical Attack in the History of the World”.

Of course, I do not believe for a moment that the allegations of the western-propagated Idlib chemical incident are true, but this is the sort of headline the Western corporate media runs, irrespective of actual evidence, of which they have none as regards the alleged chemical attack in Khan Sheikhoun.

Please recall that just days after the US-led coalition murdered anywhere between 60 and 80 Syrian soldiers in Deir ez-Zor, Western governments, their jihadi proxies and the Western press deflected attention by attacking a UN humanitarian convoy and blaming Syria and/or Russia.

The BBC report on the bus bombings states:

“A huge car bomb has blasted a convoy of coaches carrying evacuees from besieged government-held towns in Syria, killing at least 39 people.”

The actual names of the towns Foua and Kafraya aren’t mentioned until paragraph 5, after the BBC had ominously warned of “revenge attacks on a convoy of evacuees from rebel-held towns, being moved under a deal,” implying the big bad Syrian ‘regime’ cannot be trusted.

Despite the BBC’s deliberate anti-Syrian propaganda here, compare how the Syria government and the so-called ‘opposition’ have behaved so far in similar exchange deals.

– December 2016: Civilians and terrorists, including al-Qaeda in Syria (Jabhat al-Nusra…and their re-branded incarnation Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham ) were bused safely (from the eastern areas they terrorized) to Idlib. Sick and wounded residents of Foua and Kafraya were meant to be bused out in exchange but terrorists attacked and burned five or six buses, pledging to ” burn anyone who comes to transport them”.

“4 months ago “rebels” burned evacuation buses meant for Foua/Kafraya and can be heard saying “We will burn anyone who comes to transport them”

– April 2017: Syrian media, SANA, reported on April 14: “60 buses transport more than 2300 gunmen and some of their families from al-Zabadani and Madaya. The link on SANA’s website contains a video showing numerous moving buses, the Syrian Red Crescent, and civilians presumably families of militants also present in the video.

In August 2016, journalist Vanessa Beeley and I met with a number of Foua/Kafraya residentswho had been evacuated in a then rather-rare evacuation, December 2015. The horrors they spoke of will never be fairly reported in corporate media.

*U-News photos of April 15 terrorist attack on civilian convoy

Eva Bartlett Discusses Media’s Fake Narrative on Syria

Independent journalist Eva Bartlett offers up an interesting suggestion in this interview–that maybe it’s time for all people of conscience to stop granting interviews to the mainstream media. “We can’t expect them (the corporate media) to suddenly have an agenda of telling truth on Syria or any other issue.” It is a statement one could hardly argue with.

If a TV reporter asks you to give a comment on camera, the last–and I mean the absolutely last–thing you should do is to feel flattered. What should cross your mind instead is the instant recognition that such a person’s main interest is not in presenting an accurate account of what you have to say, but rather in getting a soundbite that supports his or her employer’s political narrative. This is what they get paid for. This is what a reporter’s job is nowadays.

In the world we live in today, truth is turned upside down. Watch this video posted yesterday by RT regarding comments made at a committee meeting in Congress earlier this week. One of the speakers before the committee tries to advance the premise that the truth is in reality a “virus,” and that the viral avalanche of lies spouted by the mainstream media are in reality the truth. “Disarming” the “virus” necessitates finding a “vaccine,” this of course in the form of more lies.

I couldn’t help smiling at how irate the RT reporter sounded at the conclusion of her report, and yes, it is of course exasperating when liars manage to get away with their deceptions. Which I think gets back to what Bartlett is saying–that maybe it’s time to simply stop speaking to the mainstream media.

Finally, I’ll close with this–a simple and basic truth spoken by Syrian President Bashar Assad: that all foreign troops present in Syria are invaders unless they have the government’s permission to be in the country:

Video: War on Syria: Manufactured Revolution and Fake Media Narrative

Global Research, February 28, 2017
Eva Bartlett

Canadian independent journalist Eva Bartlett is the object of a smear campaign by Canada’s mainstream media.

Listen to what she has to say and then decide who is telling the truth.

The mainstream media denies the existence of terrorists linked to Al Qaeda.

According to mainstream sources, there were no terrorists in Aleppo. 

Al Qaeda and the Islamic State are supported by US-NATO, Saudi Arabia and Israel. They are the state-sponsors of terrorism. We are dealing with a war of aggression. Eva Bartlett provides detailed evidence of  war crimes.

The following video interview by Global Research TV was conducted in Montreal in January in the context of Eva Bartlett’s Canada speaking tour.

It is followed by her presentation at the Montreal venue. (M.Ch, GR Editor)

Eva Bartlett’s presentation in Montreal 


Excerpts from Eva Bartlett’s Sott article entitled

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

Doctors In Aleppo Refute Media Lies

In the first week of July 2016 I traveled by car to Aleppo. When entering the southern Ramouseh district of the city, the car sped along a road known for terrorist snipers. Three weeks later in Ramouseh, a woman was sniped by a terrorist and killed.

© Eva Bartlett
Oil barrels line Ramouseh road to protect Syrian civilians against Western-backed terrorist snipers

In Aleppo, I met with doctors from the Aleppo Medical Association (established in 1959), including Dr. Zahar Buttal, Dr. Tony Sayegh, and Dr. Nabil Antaki.

One question I posed to the doctors was regarding the other oft-repeated lie of the “last pediatrician” in Aleppo, a startling allegation designed to shock western readers and rally them against the Syrian government. And one which has no basis in truth.

Dr. Zahar Buttal, Chairman of the Aleppo Medical Association, refuted such allegations, noting that Aleppo has 180 pediatricians still working in the city. Of one of the alleged lone pediatricians he said: “The media says the only pediatrician in Aleppo was killed in a hospital called Quds. In reality, it was a field hospital, not registered.” As for the pediatrician, “We checked the name of the doctor and didn’t find him registered in Aleppo Medical Association records.”

Indeed, the Quds hospital referenced was central to the April/May frenzy of media lies regarding Aleppo and the Syrian government, and Russian allies. Claims around the building called al-Quds hospital contradicted one another, the fallacies and serious discrepancies outlined in this article.

Also central to the lies were the bias and propaganda of the very partial, corporate-financed Medecins Sans Frontiers (MSF), which supports areas in Syria controlled by terrorists, specifically Jabhat al-Nusra (whose failed attempt at re-branding with a new name – Jabhat Fatha al-Sham – does not negate its ties to Al-Qaeda nor erase their crimes).

The next, related, question for the doctors was: If government-secured Aleppo has 180 pediatricians, how many doctors in total are still working there? Lying media have for months claimed the number of doctors are dwindling, including even a late July propaganda piece in The Intercept which asserted that “the number of doctors in Aleppo City has plummeted into the low dozens. The number of remaining medical specialists is even smaller.”

Yet, according to Dr. Zahar Buttal, until now there are 4,160 doctors registered and active in Aleppo city, in the government-secured areas of over 1.5 million people. Of the 4,160 doctors, 200 have been newly registered since the beginning of this year.

As for the media claims of a lack of specialists in Aleppo, in addition to the 180 mentioned pediatricians, there are of course many more specialists in Aleppo. According to the Aleppo Medical Association’s Dr. Zahar, specialists still practicing in the city include:

  • 30 cardiovascular surgeons
  • 214 general surgeons
  • 112 orthopedists
  • 11 pulmonologists
  • 12 neurologists
  • 8 neurosurgeons
  • 250 obstetricians/gynecologists
  • 15 gastroenterologists

Dr. Nabil Antaki, himself a gastroenterologist, is one of a group of 15 specialist doctors which, since late 2012, have volunteered their services, treating in private hospitals (with the most minimal equipment and medical fees possible) upwards of 500 civilians severely injured by terrorist bombings, needing specialist care and often life-support. Specialists in his group alone include: three general surgeons, one heart surgeon, one neurosurgeon, two orthopedic surgeons, and three anesthesiologists.

Dr. Antaki has been outspoken about the western media lies on Aleppo. When the western-created “Aleppo is Burning” campaign took flight in late April – the exact time when western-backed terrorists increased their daily bombing of Aleppo to severe bombardments – Dr. Antaki, seeing the worst of the casualties and bombings, spoke out.

When I met him in July 2016, Dr. Antaki continued to be vocal about the media manipulations and fragrant lies about the reality on the ground in Aleppo.

“All of the campaigns which were launched by the western media concerned the east part of Aleppo, which is the part controlled by the ‘rebels’. All the media reported that the people there are suffering, the buildings are destroyed and that the Syrian government are doing ‘war crimes’. But, what we are receiving in the part controlled by the Syrian government is much worse than in the east part. Nobody speaks about what is happening in the western part of Aleppo.There are not only tens of mortars every day which fell on the western part of Aleppo, but hundreds, and every day we have hundreds killed or wounded. And nobody spoke about it. When the media spoke about one supposed hospital destroyed in the eastern part, one week after, the main maternity hospital in Aleppo was hit by bombs sent by the ‘rebels’, and women were killed, and nobody spoke about this.”

Aleppo’s Dr. Tony Sayegh has also been vocal about the blatant media bias on Aleppo. In July, regarding the Quds hospital and related propaganda, Dr. Sayegh told me:

This hospital, in the Sukkari district, they made a big propaganda about it, ‘the last doctor in that area,’ which is absolutely wrong. The government has doctors working in that area who get their salaries from the government, even though the area is controlled by terrorists. For the government, all areas and and their inhabitants are Syrians. Areas where there are terrorists, like al-Manbij, like al-Bab, in all those areas there are many doctors working with the health ministry, and they take their salaries from the health ministry.

Aleppo’s Over Ten Thousand Dead and Maimed Absent From Corporate Headlines

Dr. Nabil Antaki gave the following overview of life for the civilians of government-secured Aleppo, from mid-2012 until our July meeting.

Since July 2012, the main area of Aleppo receives every day mortars, bombs and gas canisters, sent by the ‘rebels’ on the civilians living in Aleppo. Here you have human damage more than there, but less physical destruction, because here we are receiving mortars and gas canister bombs. If a mortar hits the building, it might make a hole the size of a window, but also kill five people at once. In the part of Aleppo under the government control, every day we have dozens of injured and killed.

In late April 2016, terrorists in the occupied eastern quarters of Aleppo, as well as then-occupied Beni Zaid and neighbouring districts, increased their normal bombing campaigns of mortars, gas canister explosives (from household to the the largest size canisters, stuffed with glass, bearings, metal shrapnel), explosive bullets, and powerful foreign-supplied rockets to from high-tens to over one hundred per day on the heavily-populated areas of Aleppo secured by the Syrian state.

Of the heightened bombardment, Dr. Nabil Antaki told me:

Usually you don’t have just one mortar, you have a rain of mortars: ten, twenty, thirty, and more in a few hours. Many people are wounded at the same time. When ambulances bring people to the public hospital, maybe twenty or thirty people arrive at the same time. The public hospitals lack enough medical staff and equipment. So if you have ten severely wounded persons arriving at the same time at the public hospital, by the time care comes, a victim has time to die.

In his Aleppo Medical Association office, Dr. Zaher Buttal read from his diary statistics on the late April/early May terrorists’ bombardment campaign:

  • April 23rd: 81 martyrs, 30 wounded.
  • April 28th & 29th: Bloodiest days. 31 martyrs, 75 wounded **initial numbers only.
  • From April 23rd-30th: 120 martyrs, over 800 wounded.
  • May 3rd: 25 martyrs, 100 wounded (including 3 women killed in the al-Dabeet maternity hospital explosion).

© Eva Bartlett
Dr. Dabeet showing me images of the Western-backed terrorist attack on the maternity hospital named after him

Although the Aleppo Medical Association documented the daily number of killed and injured by this increased bombing campaign, and although the areas attacked included a number of registered Aleppo hospitals, corporate media and Wall Street-backed “human rights groups” in their Turkish-based, or further-removed, reporting on Aleppo preferred to cite “unnamed activists” and al-Qaeda-in-Syria “White Helmets” actors.

Like many (if not most) Aleppo residents, Dr. Zaher Buttal has never heard of the White Helmets. The fact that the head of the Medical Association is not aware of this group purporting to be rescuing civilians in Aleppo highlights the reality that they work solely in terrorist-occupied areas and for the terrorists themselves. For more information on the terrorist-propaganda group that is known as the “White Helmets,” see this video and this article.

Other Pro-Terrorist Propaganda

The same July 2016 Intercept article which promoted the lone-doctor narrative also neglected to mention that a hospital they cite is in fact a hospital not only long-established but also belonging to a volunteer association headed by Syria’s Grand Mufti, Dr. Ahmad Badr Al-Din Hassoun.

The Intercept article read: “Almouslem’s hospital, Omar Ibn Abdel Aziz, has long been the only functioning medical facility in its pocket of eastern Aleppo City.”

In a mid-July and then an August 11th meeting with Mufti Hassoun in Damascus, he explained that the organization (The Association of Raising the Standard of Health and Social Status) of which he is Director had two hospitals and ten clinics daily giving medical care for free to up to 1500 of Aleppo’s poorest. One of these hospitals was the mentioned Omar Ibn Abdul Aziz hospital. It had three operating rooms, an MRI, nine dialysis machines, 12 incubators, and 50 beds. It is now controlled by terrorists who, Mufit Hassoun said, further mounted machine guns on the hospital’s three ambulances. The humanitarianism of western-backed so-called “moderate” “rebels”.

Mufti Hassoun explained:

In 1985 we started construction of the hospital, and in 1992 the hospital started operating. We treated for free over 400 patients daily, people from a very poor neighbourhood.

When the terrorists took over the hospital, they evicted the doctors, and killed three of the nurses and more than ten of the patients. The media say that MSF is supporting the hospital, but they are using it like a field hospital to treat terrorists. This is the hospital that we built with our own hands, and now they lie and say that it’s their own hospital.

Halfway through a video which the Intercept piece links to, who should appear but the war-propagandizing White Helmets – who only work in terrorist-occupied areas. This is the evidence the Intercept presents, along with a UN report lacking sources for its assertions. The UN has no physical presence in terrorist-occupied eastern Aleppo and, like lying media and NGOs, relies on “unnamed activists” and the SOHR-type sources for their statistics.

Brazenly, Al-Hel online media stole a photo from the Aleppo Medical Association, claiming it depicted doctors in terrorist-occupied eastern Aleppo: “Aleppo doctors are demanding an end to the bombing of the regime … and describe the situation as ‘a humanitarian catastrophe’.”

The equally war-propagandistic Facebook page, Syria Breaking, shared the stolen-photo and Al-Hel article, adding its own lies:

There are now in the eastern part of the city of ‪#‎Aleppo, no fewer than 300 thousand people, there are only 30 doctors in five hospitals to serve them.

The photo in question was in fact from a May 6th protest (photos here) organized by the Aleppo Medical Association outside of the destroyed al-Dabeet maternity hospital, gutted on May 3rd by a terrorist rocket. According to Dr. Zaher Buttal, more than 150 doctors attended the demonstration.

The protest came following the weeks of carnage from terrorists’ relentless bombardment of civilian areas all over government-secured Aleppo – including numerous hospitals – and was, Dr. Buttal said, both in anger at the terrorists’ targeting of hospitals in Aleppo and also to show the world that, contrary to media lies, Aleppo does have doctors.

Of the signs doctors held, Professor Tim Anderson wrote:

Their signs – in English, Italian and German as well as Arabic – read: ‘Syrian Arab Army represents me’, ‘Long live Syria, long live Aleppo’, ‘Terrorists are killing our children’, ‘Armed opposition is destroying our civilisation’, ‘No for armed opposition’.

From the terrorists’ May 3rd bombings, a rocket landed on a parked car right next to the al-Dabeet maternity hospital, causing a massive explosion which gutted the hospital interior, severely damaged the exterior, and burned the two cars parked behind it. Footage from a nearby building’s security camera shows the rocket and subsequent massive explosion occurred at 9:36 am, May 3rd.

A Western-backed terrorist rocket explodes outside Dabeet Maternity hospital in Aleppo

While initial reports said 16 civilians were killed in the May 3rd terrorist bombings, by the time the wounded had succumbed to their severe injuries, 25 people were killed and over 100 injured, according to the medical association’s Dr. Zaher Buttal. The three women killed were in the al-Dabeet hospital reception at the time, said Dr. Dabeet. One of the injured included a 28-week-pregnant woman who survived the loss of long sections of her intestine due to shrapnel injuries.

The operating room was destroyed, along with patient rooms, five of ten incubators (the other five needing repair), and much of his equipment.

One week later the maternity hospital was again hit by a terrorist-fired mortar, destroying the roof and injuring construction workers there, according to Dr. Dabeet.

© Eva Bartlett
Dabeet Maternity hospital after it suffered a direct hit from Western-backed terrorists in Aleppo.

According to Dr. Zaher Buttal, other hospitals hit include the Ibn Rashd hospital, with a mortar hitting the top floor, the Arab Medicine hospital, and the perimeter of the Razi hospital.

Starving, Besieged Civilians? Liberated Areas Ignored

While terrorists’ bombings and sniping attacks have been the most pressing issues in Aleppo in the past few months, other crises since 2012 have been those of water and electricity shortages, as well as the terrorist-blockades suffered by the population in government-secured Aleppo, cutting off food, fuel and medicine to the city.

The already risky Ramouseh road which I took into Aleppo in early July was recently assaulted by terrorist snipers and shelling, and has been closed to prevent civilian fatalities. This sole road leading into Aleppo closed, terrorist actions have again cut the lifeline for the over 1.5 million people inside. In July, Dr. Nabil Antaki explained how terrorists themselves closed the road many times in the past, and the dire effects of doing so.

Because the ‘rebels’ control the main roads around Aleppo, Aleppo has suffered blockades, sometimes for a few days and other times for many, many weeks. During those many weeks, nothing was able to enter Aleppo: no food, no vegetables, no fruits, no gas, no medical equipment, no drugs… the people of Aleppo suffered a lot.

The water supply has been cut by ‘rebels’, because the main water stations are in ‘rebel’ areas. Many times they cut the water for weeks or months. So for three years, we had to use the water of wells — we now have in Aleppo 300 wells which we had to use to provide water for the 1.5 million persons living in Aleppo under the Syrian state.

In addition, we don’t have power supply, because the electricity generator and power supply are in the ‘rebel’ portion of Aleppo, and they cut the supply. That’s why people have private subscription to 1 or 2 amperes, just to have 1 or 2 or 3 bulbs during the night. They have to pay very expensive prices just to have this. The people of Aleppo are truly suffering.

Mustapha Melhis of Aleppo’s water authority explained in July 2015:

Our water reservoirs are 90 kilometers [56 miles] away, in Hafsa, a region held by IS [Islamic State]. In May, they cut the amount of water [supplied] by half….

The second aspect of the problem is distribution. The water pumped by IS flows to the Suleiman Halabi and Bab al-Nairab stations here [in Aleppo]. Both areas are controlled by Jabhat al-Nusra, and they are using the water as a weapon to impose their demands.

In the same article, Aleppo Governor Mohammad Marwan Olabi said:

The power plants are outside the city. Terrorists control two areas from where electricity lines to Aleppo pass. Whenever they want to put pressure on Aleppo, they cut the electricity. And when electricity is gone, the water supply is cut off as well.

Corporate media have largely ignored these very real crises, and instead manufacture (regarding terrorist-held eastern Aleppo) the same types of propaganda campaigns of “starving civilians” which earlier flooded social media and were endorsed by dubious NGOs, like those on Madaya and Yarmouk. In all cases, no mention is made of the fact that the population in the area includes terrorist factions or why there is any lack of supplies (because of the terrorist factions).

As with Madaya and Yarmouk, when residents of the terrorist-inhabited regions do manage to speak to media, inevitablythey speak of terrorists stealing food supplies, hoarding goods and selling them at extortionist rates, and preventing residents from leaving to safer areas.

On July 28, the Syrian Arab Army fully secured the Bani Zaid and Lairamoun northern neighbourhoods of Aleppo city,liberating them from the western-backed mercenaries who occupied the districts since October 2012.

Civilians who had remained in Bani Zaid spoke of the terrorists’ firing of gas canister and other bombs on the civilians of neighbouring government-secured Aleppo districts. Western corporate media largely ignored this significant liberation and the jubilation of liberated residents.

On the same day, President al-Assad issued a decree granting amnesty to Syrians who laid down their weapons and reconciled with the state.

When the Syrian-Russian coordinated humanitarian corridors opened in eastern Aleppo in late July, reports soon after emerged of terrorists preventing residents from leaving, including assassinating residents who attempted to leave. When some residents from these areas did manage to evacuate, testimonies showed them thanking the government for providing the basics and cursing the terrorists for having stolen from them, abused residents, and in many cases killed their loved ones.

Russia Today interviewed evacuees who likewise did not praise the west’s so-called “rebels” but spoke of the hell civilians endured under terrorist occupation.

We left with our remaining children. May God punish the rebels. They did not allow us to leave, they deprived us of gas, water, electricity and bread. We were not allowed to leave. There were no medicines. They used to tell us you live with us or die with us,” one woman said.

Attacks On Aleppo Continue, To Media Silence

“For three days after the liberation of Bani Zaid, it was very quiet in Aleppo. People were happy, there were no more mortars. Suddenly, yesterday, the terrorists started sending mortars and rockets on Aleppo again, especially on Hamdaniya where thousands of displaced people live. So people are leaving this neighbourhood to find another place,” Dr. Nabil Antaki told me on August 1st .

In a phone call on August 10th, Dr. Zaher Buttal updated that since July 30th, terrorist bombings had killed 30 civilians in Aleppo, and wounded hundreds. By August 11th , Dr. Buttal said another 16 civilians in Hamadaniya, Aleppo, had been killed by terrorists’ missiles, another 45 wounded.

Today there was supposed to be a truce between 10 am and 1 pm. Terrorists ignored this and again bombarded Hamadaniya neighbourhood.

Both Dr. Buttal and truth-based media have reported that terrorists used toxic gas in their bombardment of civilian areas of Aleppo.

The Western corporate media and NGO complex, on the other hand, continue to talk about imaginary “last doctors” in Aleppo, while ignoring the very real suffering of over 1.5 million Syrians in government-secured Aleppo, as well as the doctors who are treating them. This is hardly surprising given that, from the very beginning, the corporate media has toed the NATO agenda on Syria, which is to manufacture every imaginable lie and accusation against the Syrian government, the Syrian Arab Army, and the people themselves, in order to chase the NATO-GCC-Zionist-Turkish dream of imposing a puppet government in Syria. They have failed.

Excerpt from an article by Eva Bartlett originally published on SOTT

Eva Bartlett is a freelance journalist and rights activist with extensive experience in the Gaza Strip, where she lived a cumulative three years (from late 2008 to early 2013), arriving by boat as a part of the Free Gaza missions. She documented the 2008/9 and 2012 Israeli war crimes and attacks on Gaza while riding in ambulances and reporting from hospitals. Eva accompanied Palestinian fishers and farmers as they came under intensive fire from the Israeli army. She has been to Syria four times since April 2014 and works to convey the voices of a people suffering under the foreign war on Syria. Her writings can be found on her blog, In Gaza.

HOW WE WERE MISLED ABOUT SYRIA: CHANNEL 4 NEWS

Reblogged from Prof. Tim Hayward. Also strongly recommend his:

Amnesty International on Syria – at it again!

Writing recently about how we were misled by Amnesty International’s reports on Syria, I was criticised – for using the past tense.

This week Amnesty International has published a ‘new’ report – Syria: The Human Slaughterhouse – that presents no new evidence of the deaths it purports to be documenting. Even the BBC’s take on it makes clear: ‘it does not have evidence of executions taking place since December 2015’. The publication repeats previous claims about the years 2011-2015, and extrapolates.[1]

Such grave allegations need to be taken very seriously, but that starts with being scrupulous about their basis.

Previously I showed how Amnesty International did not follow its own prescribed research guidelines for earlier reports; it did not do so this time either.[2]

Those guidelines were those set out by Secretary General, Salil Shetty, and I think he could give a clearer steer on the need to observe them. In an interview, it was put to Shetty that accusations of bias are sometimes levelled at Amnesty International. His reply was that, since the organisation is criticised from all sides, ‘it must be doing something right’. This facile reply is fallacious. I can think of one controversial Amnesty representative, for instance, who has been accused of making unjustified claims against the governments of both Israel and Syria. I suspect many people who check will think he is wrong in one of those cases, although not necessarily the same one, without thereby assuming either he must be right in the other. I myself would simply regard him as simply insufficiently reliable.

Even if it is in fact true that the organisation is doing ‘something’ right, I do not think Amnesty should be content that this is good enough. I would want to insist that Amnesty needs to be tenacious in ensuring not to get it wrong. Its practice in Syria of extrapolating on the basis of conjectures made following conversations with representatives of the opposition is not guaranteed to ensure that.

What I think the grassroots supporters of Amnesty International need above all to be concerned about is what the organisation is trying to achieve with this new publication. With more constructive possibilities of international involvement following the end of the siege of Aleppo, what is the reason for reviving attempts to demonise the Syrian government?

Whatever excesses any parties need eventually to be held to account for, the concern of Amnesty International is supposed to be with human beings, and their interest lies overwhelmingly in achieving peace – not in stoking the embers of the war.

[1] A critical discussion of this is available at http://www.moonofalabama.org/2017/02/amnesty-report-hearsay.html

[2] For the 2012 report, which covers the first year of the five referred to in the new publication, I showed, point by point, that the report admits failing to fulfil some of the research criteria and fails to show it has met any of them. Substantially the same verdict applies to what is said here for 2012-2015; regarding the period 2015-2016, which many readers will understandably, but mistakenly, assume the ‘new’ evidence relates to, no evidence at all is even claimed to be presented.

 

How We Were Misled About Syria: Amnesty International

 

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