NATO Proxy Terrorists Clash with Heavy Weapons in Northern Syria

ARABI SOURI

NATO proxies of the US-sponsored Kurdish SDF separatist terrorists and the Turkey-sponsored Al Qaeda and its affiliated terrorist groups exchanged mortar shelling in the northern countryside of Aleppo, the fratricide is ongoing since yesterday evening and until the time of this report.

The artillery and mortar shelling caused material damage in the targeted villages without losses in lives, none reported by the belligerent parties, which could be to keep the morale of their personnel.

Propaganda outlets of the Kurdish SDF separatist terrorists claimed that the villages of Samouqa and Umm Al Qura in the Al Shahba area in the northern Aleppo countryside were shelled with artillery by the Turkey-sponsored terrorists, 12 projectiles struck the villages today, Thursday 12 May.

The video is also available on Rumble and BitChute.

One of the Kurdish propaganda outlets provided a video report of what it said is a heavy shelling shortly after midnight by the Turkish army and its so-called ‘National Army’ proxy in the eastern countryside of Ain Eissa city in the northern Raqqa countryside.

The Kurdish SDF terrorists on their part shelled villages under the control of the Turkish-sponsored Al Qaeda and its affiliated groups, the shelling targeted the village of Masha’ala in the northern countryside of Afrin, northwest of Aleppo,

Locals in the northern Syrian city of Jarabulus reported the artillery shelling by the Kurdish SDF terrorists against the city led to the injuries of two children, with no elaboration on the status of the two victims.

These clashes between NATO’s different proxy terrorist groups have been ongoing ever since NATO’s incursion in northern Syria first by the terrorist groups of the FSA followed by the Nusra Front (Al Qaeda Levant aka Nusra Front aka HTS) which ISIS took over from and then directly by NATO’s largest and second-largest armies, the US, and the Turkish, with their sponsored proxies.

The clashes between the foreign occupying forces in northern and northeastern Syria have resulted in much material damage, thousands of people killed, maimed, tens of thousands uprooted and displaced, and millions oppressed until this very day. NATO is working on its plan to Israelize the areas it currently occupies in Syria, mainly the areas where Syria’s main oil fields and the country’s food basket, by uprooting the local Syrians and replacing them with terrorists and their families sponsored by, and loyal to NATO.

US-sponsored Terrorist Commander Assassinated in Daraa Countryside

Syrian Army cleaning Daraa from Terrorists – File photo

ARABI SOURI

A top commander of the Al Qaeda FSA in the Daraa countryside, the former terrorist commander refused to join the reconciliation and refused to join his colleagues in Idlib.

Local sources from the town of Eastern Mleiha in the Daraa countryside said that Ismael Shokri Al Daraan was shot dead after attending a football (soccer) match in the town earlier today, he died instantly at the spot.

Despite cleaning most of the province of Daraa with its surrounding countryside, some terrorist commanders remain in the province causing insecurity and provoking panic among the civilians in a mostly tribal area, such terrorists as this Al Daraan are a constant source of fear and security breaches including assassinationsblowing up vehicles, looting properties, and smuggling drugs.

The local sources added that nobody claimed responsibility for Al Daraan’s elimination, the Syrian security would prefer to arrest him and extract useful information that would lead to dismantling a number of terrorist groups in the southern region of Syria, his death does not serve the overall security, however, nobody will feel sad for him.

Forces of the US army loyal to Joe Biden and of the British army working as mercenaries for the regime of Elizabeth the Second are illegally deployed in the Al Tanf area in the depth of the Syrian southeastern desert at the border’s conjunction with Iraq and Jordan, these forces have established a no-fly zone around their base in which terrorist groups gather, and train under the supervision of these foreign forces, then carry out their terrorist attacks against the people of the southern region, Al Daraan, his terrorist group, and a host of other terrorist groups with an ISIS-affiliated group relied heavily on supplies and protection from these two NATO forces operating against international law thousands of miles far from their home countries.


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Terrorists Blow up Military Bus in Damascus: 1 Martyred, 11 Injured

 MIRI WOOD 

Damascus bus explosion kills a Syrian soldier and injures others – تفجير عبوة ناسفة في باص مبيت في دمشق يقتل عسكري

Terrorists have blown up yet another military bus, this one at 07:25 on 15 February. This latest bloodbath occurred near the Customs roundabout in Damascus. As is the wont of the cowardly savages, the bus was blown up via remote detonation.

One Syrian Arab Army was martyred, and eleven others were injured. The extent of their wounds has not been released.

SAA Martyr Ghadeer Hussein Killed in the bus explosion in Damascus الشهيد غدير حسين قتل بانفجار باص المبيت في دمشق
SAA Martyr Ghadeer Hussein Killed in the bus explosion in Damascus

Terrorists’ gutless remote detonations have been responsible for hundreds of Syrian deaths and thousands of Syrians being maimed. Such detonations, along with targeted assassinations, date back to 2012, when the western supremacist-supported FSA terrorists engaged in brain drain genocide, with the slaughter of physicians, scientists, and teachers, whose deaths were ignored by NATO stenographer media — because imperialism dictates that Arab lives do not matter, particularly when supremacists plot to impose a new Sykes-Picot.

Engineer Professor Nabil Zoghaib was remotely detonated by FSA terrorists.

In May 2013, Senator John McCain became the first politician and first American illegal to overtly enter the Syrian Arab Republic. During this war criminal aggression, he met with kidnappers, ISIS colleagues, and assorted FSA vermin.

Criminal McCain illegally entered Syria, met with kidnappers & other terrorists.

Twenty-two days after McQaeda McCain met with a gang of savages — wildly cheered in US media, in true war criminal bipartisanship — his FSA/JaN friends remotely detonated the car of a Syrian professor, on her way to lecture.

On 18 June 2013, this al Qaeda gang which received pay in USD, remotely detonated an IED attached to the car of Dr. Seham Dannoun, a professor at Damascus University.

Professor Dannoun's legs were blown off when terrorists remotely detonated a bomb in her car.
Professor Dannoun’s legs were blown off when terrorists remotely detonated a bomb in her car.

Though Syrian surgeons were able to save her life, they were forced to perform bilateral above the knee amputations, as her femurs were shattered, her musculature decimated, and her veins and arteries completely gone.

At this writing, official Syrian sources have offered scant details of the carnage, and one has used an archived photograph for its featured image.

Terrorist remotely detonated another military bus in Damascus.
‘Archive’ photo offered by state medium.

The official report did mention the similar IED detonation by terrorists in October 2021.

Terrorists attack targets a bus in Damascus - Syria

To date, there has been no news report that these buses are checked for explosives placed by terrorists, prior to their deadly explosions. Nor has there been a whisper that the government has negotiated attempts to bring in the Giant African Pouched Rat, which can be trained to sniff out explosives without detonating them.

The terrorists responsible for a series of previous explosions targeting mainly the Syrian capital Damascus including the above-mentioned bus explosion in October 2021 were apprehended and gave detailed confessions confirming they were hired by a terrorist commander operating out of Idlib which happens to be Al Qaeda’s last stronghold as per NATO officials and also the safe haven of choice for ISIS heads both allegedly killed by US presidents in the same place, which not surprisingly, also happens to be under the control of terrorist groups loyal to the Turkish madman Erdogan; Turkey is NATO’s 2nd largest country and army.

 Miri Wood


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Virtual Ukrainian invasion virtually imminent

JANUARY 31, 2022

Source

By Lilia Shumkova

UPDATE: This article has been finished and ready to be emailed to The Saker, when the news coming from the government of Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics confirmed my observations expressed here.

In my extensive library of e-books, there is a book by Reese Erlich titled Inside Syria: The Backstory of Their Civil War and What the World Can Expect. The book outlines the situation developed in Syria by 2014 that was pushed, sponsored, narrated, and propagated by the United States.

In Chapter 11 of the book, “United States, Russia, and Outside Powers” Reese Erlich writes: “Meanwhile, the Obama administration was pursuing a secret military track. The CIA began overseeing arms shipments to the Free Syrian Army no later than June 2012 when it leaked the story to the New York Times. The CIA began directly arming and training rebels in early 2013 (see chapter 5). Proclaiming support for nonviolent resistance while arming rebels was not seen as a contradiction, according to State Department critic Kathy. She said the State was populated with ‘humanitarian interventionists,’ people who favor one or another form of military intervention by claiming it will, in the end, protect civilians. ‘But we never discuss the legality of such attacks, let alone the morality,’ she told me. Controversial policies are sent to the legal department for review. ‘They’ll always find a way to justify whatever policy is decided.’”

The Biden administration was soaked to the brim by Obama’s people and their “expertise.” Let’s say, they are unparalleled in inflicting “pain” on people of targeted nations.

State Department officials insisted that Syrians would benefit from US policy in the long run. The spokesperson acknowledged that ordinary Syrians were hurt by American economic sanctions, which had caused a massive drop in their standard of living. But, as if admonishing naughty children, the spokesperson told me Uncle Sam would make it up to them. ‘Once the behavior changes, once we have the Assad regime step down, we will make sure this is an environment where Americans can do business.’ There’s an interesting logic here. He assumed that the solution for economic collapse is American business investment. What’s good for American business, apparently, is good for the Syrian people. Similarly, the State Department saw no contradiction between criticizing Assad’s human-rights record and supporting pro-US regimes elsewhere in the region also committing abuse, such as Saudi Arabia and Bahrain. The State Department simply assumed that US allies can and will change while enemies will not. The spokesperson explained that allies may abuse human rights, ‘but we work with them.’

Recalling the standard disclaimer on investment products. “Past performance does not guarantee future results,” with the political operatives teams only one thing is certain. The results for Ukraine will be very different, but the methods are the same.

In the beginning of December, Russia’s Ministry of Defense issued an unheard of warning about the possibility of the false flag attack in Ukraine with someone impersonating the Russian military.

A couple of days later, Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced that it had handed the Biden administration demands for the security guarantees, and in another two days the rest of the document was posted on the ministry website. The demand for the security guarantees for Russia from the US and NATO acted as a giant monkey wrench thrown into the spinning wheel of the Western propaganda of the “invasion of Ukraine.”

Claims of “invasion” have been circulating on and off for the past 8 years, and started sounding louder in April of 2021. In November, Zelensky announced that Russia wants to topple his regime. In December, the Russian government published warnings about upcoming false flag attacks and made the diplomatic moves that somewhat confused and wobbled the “invasion” proponents. They only gained some ground by now, which is the end of January.

On Friday, January 28, the DOD and Biden administration announced the “imminent” invasion of Ukraine during a Biden/Zelensky phone conversation. Zelensky disagreed and, counterintuitively, insisted that there wasn’t much proof that the Russian army was going to “invade Ukraine.” According to CNN, the conversation “did not go well.” Zelensky and Biden disagreed about the immediacy of the threat of a “Russian attack on Ukraine.” The White House and Pentagon has been emphatic that they believe the attack could be “imminent.”

The Zerohedge article collected a hilarious confusion of the warmongering CNN coming with war propaganda and then removing it after a few hours and claiming that they were deceived by their source in the Zelensky administration.

So, the cover fall out and we witnessed a giant mix of fear, greed, hatred, russophobia,incompetence, bloodlust, and pure clinical insanity, which constitute the modern American policy-making. Many right, exact, deep and very funny things have been said and written since, but there was something else that I wouldn’t want to go unnoticed.

During his Friday press briefing, Zelensky said something that holds the golden key to the mystery of an “invasion.”

Tucker Carlson included this important segment into his Friday night monologue.

Tucker: This is a slow motion disasterhttps://www.youtube.com/embed/-0z55whpRvg?feature=oembed

In case the video won’t be available, here is a short description.

Zelensky sits in a chair on some podium in front of a room full of journalists. The White House says that the conversation between Biden and Zelensky came down to “Russian invasion is imminent,” “Kiev will be sacked,” and “prepare for impact,” and insists that Zelensky asking Biden to stop fear mongering and to turn down the rhetoric never happened. Zelensky, however, says it did happen:

We talked to the president. We talked about the same things, about the media and that there has to be a balanced approach. I’m not saying that he is influencing the American media, they are independent, but media policy has to be more balanced. If they want to know what the situation is here in Ukraine they should come to Kiev. Do we have tanks on the streets? No! The image that the mass media creates is that we have troops on the roads, we have mobilization, people are leaving for places. That’s not the case. We don’t need this panic!”

Prior, Jen Psaki claimed that the Biden administration had 18 scenarios of “Russian invasion of Ukraine.” Sergey Lavrov responded by saying that 17 scenarios were written by 17 intelligence agencies and one by the DOS staff. The only thing was certain, it would be a false flag attack, because Russia didn’t have any plans to take over Ukraine. It’s very expensive, since we would have to feed their population, solve its problems, and ensure its general well-being. All this would be an enormous injustice to us, Russians, since it’s only recently that we started to live better. The economy is growing the fastest ever. Good and fair energy prices in Europe and great prices for our other exports like wheat and fertilizers pay higher pensions and paychecks of doctors, teachers, military and law enforcement, and other federal employees.The government just recently undertook gigantic investments into mega infrastructure projects and mega oil and gas processing plants (source).

It’s beyond stupid and evil to think that after trillions rubles in new investments Russian government should decides it wants to occupy and feed the failed state of Ukraine.

So, the whole thing is just a Biden admin manufactured pretext to impose new illegal trade restrictions that would per their design crush our economy and make us all poor, again.

But, going back to the gold key to the mystery that fell out of Zelensky’s mouth. What scenario will the US use to stage a false flag attack to blame it on Russia?

Here is a spoiler alert.

At 2:37 on the Tacker Carlson video, the image allegedly from Ukraine looks like the black-and-white WWII footage.

Fake war footage

Zelensky said during his interview, “Do we have tanks on the streets? No! The image that the mass media creates is that we have troops on the roads, we have mobilization, people are leaving for places. That’s not the case!”

And that’s our Oscar winning scenario of virtual invasion. It was staged and prerecorded and was supposed to be broadcast all over the world.

Last week, some British news channel aired an interview with Ukrainian general Oleksandr Pavliuk who famously said that he has half a million veterans who are ready “to tear Russians apart with their bare hands.” (source)

I couldn’t find this footage again, but if you happen to come across it you will notice a middle aged overweight man in khaki looking like a stuffed sausage or the Michelin Man. He slowly runs across the snowy field,and then appears behind the general, while someone on the background shouting and shooting aimlessly, and a smoke machine in the snow emits dense vapor covering the whole scene with a couple of military trucks and a couple of men hiding behind them.  The whole scene is a movie set, and they are filming scenes of a virtual “Russian invasion.”

In Zelensky’s own words: Do we have tanks on the streets? No! The image that the mass media creates is that we have troops on the roads, we have mobilization, people are leaving for places. That’s not the case!

So, when we see news on tanks on the streets in Ukraine, troops on the roads, mass mobilization and people in khaki leaving for places – it’s an image of the “Russian invasion” that western media have created.

Newsweek image of alleged middle-aged “Ukrainian soldiers”.

Borrowed from here:

Ukraine is a very poor country. People there would do anything for money, especially act in a movie.

On Monday, January 31,  The head of the People’s Militia Department, Yan Leshchenko, announced that Kiev is preparing staged and filmed stories about the military actions allegedly unleashed by the republics of Donbass and Russia against Ukraine (source)

“Our intelligence obtained reliable information about the development and implementation by Ukrainian special services with the support of Western intelligence agencies of a special information campaign codenamed Crushing Sword. The purpose of this campaign is to mislead the world community and accuse the People’s Republics of Donbass and the Russian Federation of aggression against Ukraine,” Leshchenko quotes the Telegram channel of the People’s Militia of the LPR (source)

Lugansk now has reliable information that Kiev is preparing professionally acted and staged TV stories as part of the campaign. “At the first stage of the information campaign with the beginning of aggression by the Ukrainian Armed Forces the Kiev regime planned to broadcast pre-prepared staged videos on the alleged beginning of military operations against Ukraine by the People’s republics and the Russian Federation,” Leshchenko said.

The Ukrainian authorities organized videos about the residents of Donbass, who allegedly ask “to free them from Russian oppression.” “Kiev is ready to release staged videos on television in which specially trained citizens on behalf of our people will talk about the “horrors of war” and ask “to free them from Russian oppression,” the head of the People’s Militia department informed.

TASS reported that according to Leshchenko, Kiev propagandists want to convince the world community of the legitimacy of the actions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, allegedly liberating Donbass from terrorists. “Ukrainian propagandists intend to demonstrate the successes of the Ukrainian army in allegedly successfully repelling the imaginary aggression of the people’s republics, as well as conducting an offensive on Donbass. According to the plan, the international community and the population of Ukraine will have to make sure of the legality of the actions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, allegedly liberating Donbass from terrorists. The death of civilians in the people’s republics will be presented as the destruction of terrorists,” he said in a statement.

Darayya: 100,000 Displaced Return to their Homes, City’s Rubble Cleared

 

Darayya Damascus Countryside rehabilitated by the Syrian state داريا في ريف دمشق يتم ازالة الأنقاض وإعادة تأهيلها

ARABI SOURI

Darayya in Damascus southwestern countryside was one of the first cities visited by the US-sponsored ‘freedom fighters’ and its people were among the first to witness firsthand the ‘freedom’ these terrorists brought with a horrific massacre, today, the city is restoring its life back.

More than 100,000 people of the city’s population returned to their homes, or what’s left of it, until this day, Darayya’s city council head Marwan Obeid stated, he added that the city had a population of 300,000.

Darayya visited by US-sponsored ‘Moderate Rebels’
Darayya visited by US-sponsored ‘Moderate Rebels’
Syrian state rehabilitating Darayya
Syrian state rehabilitating Darayya
Syrian state rehabilitating Darayya
People returning to Darayya
People returning to Darayya
Darayya Damascus Countryside thousands of residents returning

Mr. Obeid said in his statement to the local Sham FM radio channel that the council has concluded clearing the rubble of the destroyed buildings, public facilities, and the city’s infrastructure, an indication that the rest of the residents can return and rebuild their homes.

Darayya Damascus Countryside visited by US-sponsored moderate rebels داريا في ريف دمشق قام ثوار الناتو بتدميرها
Darayya visited by US-sponsored ‘Moderate Rebels

The Syrian armed forces and law enforcement units cleared Darayya from the US-sponsored Al Qaeda Levant in August 2016, back then they were still called the ‘Free Syrian Army’ or the FSA, the terrorists left behind a 95% destroyed city, maybe that was their main goal not to all of them become Syria’s new president!

In the process of destroying (liberating by NATO’s media) the city of Darayya, the US-sponsored ‘freedom fighters’ killed 2911 people, official records show, the law enforcement agencies managed to arrest 5193 terrorists, some 2560 of them continue serving their sentences in prison, the others were either included in one of the presidential amnesties or completed their sentences and were back to their normal lives.

Usually, members of terrorist groups who did not harm any other people were included in the presidential amnesties and were sentenced very lightly, most of them, however, who joined the reconciliation processes were not even tried and not prosecuted. Others who did kill or cause harm where personal lawsuits are filed against them are not included in any amnesty. Presidential amnesties only cover crimes against the state not against individuals.

Darayya still needs many services to return to a fully liveable city, the US, European, and Gulfies-imposed blockade on Syria adds an enormous burden on the Syrian state to meet the people’s needs, the continuous occupation of Syrian territories by Biden forces, and forces loyal to the Turkish madman Erdogan of the Turkish army and its affiliated HTS umbrella of terrorist groups, in addition to the separatist Kurdish SDF terrorists impede Syria’s overall recovery.

Darayya Map

Syria News is a collaborative effort by two authors only, we end up most of the months paying from our pockets to maintain the site’s presence online, if you like our work and want us to remain online you can help by chipping in a couple of Euros/ Dollars or any other currency so we can meet our site’s costs.

American Military Illegals Continue to Train Terrorists How to Bomb Syria

 

MIRI WOOD 

American military illegals continue to practice bombing war ‘games’ with its al Qaeda faction Maghaweir Thawra — and brag about them — in the Deir Ezzor and al Tanf desert areas of the Syrian Arab Republic, which is not in the United States, nor is it a US territory or satrap. The cost of each bombing practice by the war criminal American troops and the offshoot al Qaeda faction has not yet been worked through by this author. We do, however, note, that the continuing expenses are footed by the US taxpayer, besieged by inflation reaching Weimar levels, taxpayers teetering on homelessness, and suffering food insecurity, increased drug and alcohol addiction, and massive violent crimes in all US urban centers.

Biden imperial US again helping to destroy Syrian water supply.
This map clearly shows that Syria is not part of the US. The distance between the two countries is 6,677 mi / 10,745 km.

Any country that militarily invades another country engages in war crimes, per the Geneva Conventions to which the US is signatory.

A recent contract involving the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) presented the American taxpayer with a bill over almost one-half billion dollars, paid to Lockheed Martin facilities. Since 9/11, Pentagon spending has surpassed fourteen trillion USD, The Military Industrial Complex continues to rake in the murderous profits, and continues to propagandize for that nasty thing described as American exceptionalism.

US strikes in Syria may be lawful if Syria consents to the use of force in their territory.  If Syria does not consent, the strikes would violate international law, unless the US demonstrates that the strikes were taken in self-defense.  — Sarah Knuckey, international lawyer and Professor at Columbia Law School

It matters not that US Americans go hungry. It matters not that there is no peace. What matters is that the various offshoots of the Dr Strangelove Pentagon invade, occupy, steal, and brag about their inherent right to genocide and mass looting of Syrian grains and oil — irrespective of which party’s unindicted war criminal POTUS sits in the White House.

Compare this glimpse of Philly, to the bragging tweets of Inherent War Criminal Resolve, below.

A glimpse of hunger, homelessness, and addiction in Philly, while American military spends billions training terrorists in Syria.

A glimpse of hunger, homelessness, and addiction in a previously healthy neighborhood of Philly, while American military spends billions training terrorists in Syria.

Though DAESH was created by the US — as was al Qaeda, freely admitted by H. Clinton — Syria did not invite the criminal American military into its homeland, yet here it is, flaunting its arrogant imperialist crimes of invasion, occupation, and arming terrorists.

Though there is not one single, international definition of terrorism, both the US and the UN have similar definitions, that obviously the definition of all countries around the world:

Terrorism is defined in the Code of Federal Regulations as ‘the unlawful use of force and violence against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a government, the civilian population, or any segment thereof, in furtherance of political or social objectives’ (28 C.F.R. Section 0.85). — fbi.gov

What is really appalling is that a non-politician/non-diplomat — this author — must give a rudimentary lesson to both: UNSCR 1566 (2004) considers “criminal acts, including against civilians, committed with the intent to cause death or serious bodily injury, or taking of hostages, with the purpose to provoke a state of terror in the general public or in a group of persons or particular persons, intimidate a population or compel a government…to do or abstain from doing any act” as within the description of terrorism.

What US American, faced with the horrors of the fifteen days to flatten the COVID curve, now going into its third year, faces with homelessness, food insecurity, and increased violent criminal activities, would consider a foreign military arming terrorists, like these savage in the Levantine Republic, in Philly, or NYC, or Chicago?

American military has armed and continues to train these killers, in Syria.
Moderate terrorists with their moderate lethal weapons, courtesy of the US taxpayers & the American military illegals in Syria.
Moderate terrorists with their moderate lethal weapons, courtesy of the US taxpayers & the American military illegals in Syria.
American military illegals with ISIS/DAESH Maghawir al Thawra affiliate terror gang, in Syria.

In May 2017, the FSA/al Qaeda offshoot Maghaweer al Thawra uploaded a video thanking the Trump administration for the millions of dollars worth of weapons these death squads planned to use to attack the Syrian Arab Army in Deir Ezzor and in al Tanf areas of the SAR. These degenerate psychopaths were later responsible for the martyrdom of General Issam Zahreddine, scant months later.

As the American taxpayer is under siege for almost three years and is busy idiotically fighting over the non-existent difference between war criminal Trump and war criminal Biden, they will likely continue to be oblivious to the increasing war crimes of the American military illegals in the Syrian Arab Republic.

Nonetheless, this US journalist will continue to report on the crimes against humanity perpetrated by her American military illegals in the Levantine Republic.

– Miri Wood

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Why Russia Protects the YPG in Syria

November 16, 2021

Moscow regards the legitimate Syrian opposition as a bigger threat than the YPG.

Russian military vehicles drive on the road as Russia makes a new military and logistic reinforcement of 30 vehicles to its military points in Kamisli occupied by YPG, Syrian branch of the PKK terrorist organization on September 14, 2020 Photo by Samer Uveyd, Anadolu Images


F
or years, the Turkish public criticized the U.S. administrations for their support of the YPG, the Syrian branch of the PKK terrorist organization, which poses a threat to Syria’s territorial integrity and a national security threat to Turkey. At the same time, Russia also tried to use the YPG as a card against Turkey in 2015 and early 2016, but later changed its position and declared its support for the territorial integrity of Syria, and acknowledged the threat the group poses against Turkey. However, in the end of 2019, Russia viewed the partial American withdrawal as an opportunity and re-changed its position again.

In this manner, in 2018, Russia withdrew from the Afrin region and opened the way for the joint Turkish-Syrian military operation of the Syrian National Army (SNA), the former Free Syrian Army (FSA), and the Turkish Armed Forces (TAF) against the YPG.

Moreover, Russia accepted to exclude YPG figures from the Syrian constitutional committee and signed several Astana resolutions which define the YPG as a threat to Syria’s territorial integrity. However, Russia changed its approach to the YPG following Turkey’s Operation Peace Spring and became – along with the U.S. – the new military protector of the YPG in Syria.

Read: The Only Way Out for Russia Is to Let Turkey Weaken the YPG

Why did Russia change its attitude towards the YPG? In order to understand this policy change, one should first analyze Russia’s overall Syria policy before Operation Peace Spring. No doubt, for Moscow, autonomy and federal governments or other forms of decentralized government are not a threat to the territorial integrity of a state since Russia itself is a federation. Nobody should expect Russia to oppose a federal system in Syria.

Therefore, Russia does not recognize the PKK and its Syrian branch, the YPG, as terror groups, and, in principle, does not oppose the YPG per se; however, Russia opposes the YPG’s current policies. For Moscow, the YPG’s partnership with the United States has been the main source of its distrust toward the organization. Moscow wants the YPG to quit working with the U.S. and cooperate with the Russia-backed Assad regime. Until Operation Peace Spring, all Russian charm efforts failed and the YPG remained loyal to the United States.

With Trump’s decision to withdraw from Syria, the YPG felt the urgent need to invite the Assad regime and Russia to provide military protection against Turkey and the Syrian Interim Government. The YPG’s request was seen by Moscow as a golden opportunity to gain extensive leverage. Russia wanted to fill the void and was further encouraged when U.S. CENTCOM officials decided to hand over their bases to the Russian military rather than seeing a further push by the Turkey-backed Syrian National Army.

Read: The YPG Myth Downplays a Danger For the West

With this momentum, Russia deployed its troops to Manbij, Ayn al-Arab (Kobane), Ayn Issa, Tal Tamr, Dirbasiyah, and Amudah along the front lines or the border region, and entered the towns of Tabqah and Raqqa. As Russia had troops in the YPG-held Tal Rifaat pocket since 2016, with this development, the YPG was on the verge of coming under full Russian military protection.

Moscow was expecting to enter the far east of Syria at the Iraqi border and the oil-rich region of Deir Ezzor in the southeast, but Trump’s decision to protect the oil hindered Russia from doing so. U.S. soldiers stayed in a strip in the east of the country and prevented Russia from entering. Since then, the YPG militants maintained a balancing act between Moscow and Washington as demonstrated by the visit of the PKK veteran and head of the political supreme body of the YPG, Elham Ahmad, to Moscow before heading to Washington.

Following the partial U.S. withdrawal and the new Russian protection of the YPG, Turkey signed two separate deals with the U.S. and Russia. The deal with the U.S. stopped the SNA-TAF advancement and canceled U.S. sanctions against Turkey in return.

Read: Why Turkey Is Dismantling the YPG from Northern Syria

The deal with Russia was more comprehensive. After Operation Peace Spring, the YPG invited the Assad regime and Russia to protect the front lines against a further push by the joint Turkish-Syrian forces, and Russia obligated itself under the terms of the deal to enforce a full withdrawal of all YPG forces from Tal Rifaat, Manbij, and an area extending 32 km from the Turkish border in the east of the Euphrates to the border with Iraq. The deal also foresaw joint Turkish-Russian patrols in a 10-kilometer-wide strip across the Turkish-Syrian border. Except for the joint patrols, Russia failed to deliver on any of the terms of the agreement.

Let alone keeping their promise, Russians have done the opposite and supported the YPG in its terror campaign against the Syrian Interim Government and Turkey. The YPG engaged in several attacks with various weapon systems against civilian-populated areas of the Syrian Interim Government such as Afrin, Azaz, Al-Bab, Jarablus, Tal Abyad, and Rasulayn.

The YPG used new models of Russian-supplied anti-tank guided missiles to target Turkish soldiers

The YPG used new models of Russian-supplied anti-tank guided missiles to target Turkish soldiers, infiltrated the front lines to kill SNA soldiers, and operated a network of cells in the areas of the Syrian Interim Government located in northern Syria. With these cells, the YPG could plant IEDs and attempt assassinations against the SNA, Syrian local politicians, and Turkish soldiers.

Read: The YPG Has a Bloody History in Syria, But the West Turns a Blind Eye

The YPG used the Russian-protected areas as a safe zone to conduct ranged artillery attacks against hospitals and civilian infrastructure. Yet, the most brutal of the YPG attacks were the constant car bomb attacks carried out in urban areas which randomly killed innocent civilians.

The YPG tries to maintain plausible deniability and rejects responsibility. However, car bombs intercepted at crossing points from YPG-held areas to the areas of the Syrian Interim Government, and the logic behind the attacks leave no doubt about who the perpetrators are. The YPG’s foreign backers, like the U.S., condemn the attacks without naming any suspect or culprit, or turn a blind eye to them entirely, like Russia.

For Moscow, the YPG’s systematic use of terror is a preferred tool to prevent the Syrian Interim Government from establishing a sustainable alternative to the Assad regime without getting into a confrontation with Turkey. The attacks are not conducted directly by Russia, but by the YPG, and the U.S. support and protection of the YPG shields Russia from Turkish criticism.  The Turkish public focuses on the U.S. support of the YPG rather than the military protection Russia provides the YPG and its pragmatic attitude to the YPG’s terror campaign.

In fact, Russian policy shows that Moscow regards the legitimate Syrian opposition as a bigger threat than the YPG. For Russia, the Syrian Interim Government is a direct alternative to the Assad regime, and the YPG represents only a territorially limited pursuit of autonomy. Therefore, Russia prefers to protect the YPG in order to disrupt the Syrian Interim Government rather than implementing its obligations stemming from the Turkish-Russian agreement of 2019.

In fairness, it should be underlined that the Russian position regarding the YPG’s demand to establish an autonomous region in northeast Syria has changed in line with the Astana accords. In the negotiations between the Assad regime and the YPG, Moscow puts its weight behind the regime’s categorical rejection of autonomy. In line with the Astana agreements, Russia rejects the separatist agenda of the YPG on paper. While the U.S. actively supports the political ambitions of the YPG in Syria, Russia supports the military presence of the YPG only as a temporary tool.

VIDEO: Exploiting the Female Body: The YPG Case

NATO Liquidating their Terrorists in Syria: One Al Qaeda Commander, Two SDF Commanders Droned

 ARABI SOURI 

NATO Turkish drone bomb NATO Kurdish SDF terrorists in northern Syria

NATO, the evil camp that invades countries under the pretext of ‘spreading democracy’ and upholding ‘human rights’ is now resorting to arbitrary killings of their own staff on a third country’s soil, in this case, Syria. The White House junta killed a commander of Al Qaeda, a US-created and sponsored terrorist organization, and Turkey killed two commanders of the US-sponsored Kurdish SDF separatist terrorist armed group, the two killings were carried out by drones in northern Syria within 24 hours.

Abdul Hamid Al Matar, said to be a leading commander of Al Qaeda was killed by a bombing by a US-operated MQ-9 drone in the town of Suluk in Raqqa countryside, northern Syria.

The US Central Command ‘CENTCOM’ admitted to committing the cross-border arbitrary assassination on its website quoting its own spokesperson:

A U.S. airstrike today in northwest Syria killed senior al-Qaeda leader Abdul Hamid al-Matar. We have no indications of civilian casualties as a result of the strike, which was conducted using an MQ-9 aircraft.

They have no indication of civilian casualties as the result of their strike, a similar statement they said when they massacred 7 Afghani civilians including 3 children in a similar drone bombing last month, September. Even the Pentagon’s own propagandists at the New York Times slammed their military war criminals and habitual liars saying:

Almost everything senior defense officials asserted in the hours, and then days, and then weeks after the Aug. 29 drone strike turned out to be false. The explosives the military claimed were loaded in the trunk of a white Toyota sedan struck by the drone’s Hellfire missile were probably water bottles, and a secondary explosion in the courtyard in a densely populated Kabul neighborhood where the attack took place was probably a propane or gas tank, officials said.
In short, the car posed no threat at all, investigators concluded.
~The New York Times.

Killing this alleged Al Qaeda commander in Syria was carried out without Syria’s knowledge and without the approval of the country where this crime was committed. The Syrian authorities do not know what this Al Qaeda commander was doing in Syria, who he was working for, and how he was based, and most likely operating not far from the US troops and their Kurdish SDF terrorists, both illegally occupying parts of northern Syria? Capturing the alleged terrorist alive would have revealed many secrets, someone considered them to be uncomfortable to discuss and decided their usual convenient way.

NATO top leader Erdogan killing NATO-sponsored Kurdish SDF terrorists:

In another direct drone bombing, NATO member state Turkey eliminated two NATO-sponsored Kurdish SDF separatist terrorist commanders in the northeastern Aleppo countryside.

The two SDF commanders were killed with one of their bodyguards in their vehicle while moving from the Syrian city of Ain Issa in the northern Raqqa countryside to the Syrian city of Ain Arab in the northeastern countryside of Aleppo near the borders with Turkey.

The video is also on BitChute.

The Turkish regime of Erdogan is using the Kurdish SDF terrorists as a justification for his illegal incursion into Syria in a blatant breach of international law, the UN Charter, the Adana Accord, and all UNSC resolutions in which almost all of them his regime has endorsed, it’s also a breach of the agreements of Sochi and Moscow signed by himself before the Russian and Iranian leaders.

However, the same Turkish regime of Erdogan does not see in Al Qaeda and all its derivatives as the so-called HTS, Nusra Front (Al Qaeda Levant), ISIS, the Turkestan Islamist Party (mainly Chinese Uighur and Chechen terrorists), Faylaq Sham (Muslim Brotherhood head-choppers), and the FSA as terrorists, on the contrary, the Turkish madman Erdogan pushes the Turkish Army, the second-largest army in NATO, in front of these Al Qaeda terrorists to act as human shields for them in the face of the Syrian Arab Army and its allies.

NATO eliminating its proxies is a usual tactic by this alliance which its very existence should have ceased after the collapse of the USSR and the Warsaw Pact, decades ago, instead, its officials continue to create new enemies around the world and invade, bomb, and loot countries under different pretexts: humanitarian interventions, spreading democracies, attacking terrorist groups they only created, toppling governments that don’t allow their corporations to loot their countries while protecting regimes that do, rendering the United Nations Security Council into a complete useless farce, if they can issue a resolution from the UNSC to justify their war crimes they’ll praise the international body and commit their crimes claiming it’s in accordance with international law, and when they fail to obtain such resolution they attack the UNSC and still commit their crimes claiming it’s in accordance with international law!

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Syria Puts UNSG and UNSC on Notice: Erdogan’s War Crimes to Be Halted

 MIRI WOOD 

Syrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs - Damascus, Syria

Syria’s Foreign and Expatriates Ministry has put both UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and the UNSC on notice that it is well past time for the bastion of peace and security to enforce its Charter against member states which breach it, in this case, the Turkish invader and occupation forces. If Guterres and the Security Council continue to refuse to enforce the Charter which prohibits member states from war criminal attacks on other countries, Syria will finally take the matter into its own military hands, which is its legal right, per the Geneva Agreements of 1949 and per the UN Charter.

The polite and overly diplomatic version of this report has been published in SANA, 20 September.

Since the beginning of the heinous NATO Spring dumped on Syria in March 2011, NATO Turkey has led the way in war crimes against the Syrian Arab Republic.

In November 2012, al Qaeda terrorists occupying part of Aleppo, under the commands of NATO Erdogan and the dirty Gulfie gas station — two-thirds of which are US military bases, dismantled Syrian factories and oil machinery parts, and transported them by trucks — in broad daylight — into Turkey.

On 5 December 2012, al Qaeda FSA terrorists in an alleged ‘make shift’ laboratory in Gaziantep, Turkey, announced they had chemical weapons and were prepared to use them against Syrian patriots. They demonstrated that they did — the chemical weapon appeared to be VX — in a fatal experiment with two rabbits. The UNSC refused to investigate the threat.

On 21 December 2012, the al Qaeda FSA terrorists in the same ‘make shift’ lab announced they had developed a quick acting poison that could massacre Syrian patriots via dumping it into the Alsinn Spring water supply to Lattakia. This time one rabbit was used in the fatal demonstration. Again, the UNSC refused to investigate.

Instead of poisoning the spring, the savages used this chemical substance to murder dozens of kidnapped Syrian children, on 4 April 2017, in Khan Sheikhoun.

Prior to Madman Erdogan’s official military invasions of the Syrian Arab Republic — to which it gave Orwellian names of Olive Branch (2018) and Peace Spring (2019), the war criminals had occupied Jarabulus, Syria, and created a Turkish police force.

Syria has previously called on the civilized world to halt Turkey’s cultural aggression against the state.

In September 2019, Erdogan presented his planned annexation of Syria map to the UN General Assembly. He should have had rotten eggs and tomatoes thrown at him; instead, the NATO klansmen and house servants in attendance, bobbed their heads in approval.

Erdogan annexation map of Syria shown at UNGA meeting.
Madman Erdogan’s annexation map received tacit approval by the UN NATO klan at General Assembly meeting September 2019.

Imagine the supremacists at UNGA having tolerated a similar map of annexation plots by countries surrounding France:

Annexation normalized against Syria would not be tolerated against France.

Madman Erdogan simultaneously announced and launched his war criminal Operation Peace Spring aerial bombing and ground invasion bombing of the Allouk electrical grid on 9 October 2019 (supported by American illegal John McCain’s FSA/Jabhat al Nusra pal, Salim Idriss), which was immediately repaired by the Syrian Electricity Army, to be re-bombed and re-repaired. At the 24 October anti-Syria UN meeting, the Security Council P3 and their Ursula Mueller were complicit in ignoring the advent of Turkey’s water war crimes against the Levantine republic.

The reality of Turkey’s water war crimes against Syria was completely ignored by the unindicted war criminals of the UN, at the NATO junta’s anti-Syria monthly meeting, on 24 October 2019. Instead of condemning NATO Turkey’s water war crime against the Syrian people, the urchin honcho disgracefully described Erdogan’s atrocity as perpetrated by “allied non-State armed groups” and inferred that intricate repairs were made by a simple wave of a fairy godmother’s wand.

Mere months later, the same Emergency Relief Coordinator who showed little concern for Erdogan’s water war crimes was nearly frothing at the mouth at the UN anti-Syria klan fest, demanding Tal Abyad have a border crossing opened to ‘help’ the suffering Syrians, though she appeared sedate in the pre-meeting UNSCR meeting of the NATO klan.

On 28 April 2021, the OCHA humanitarian bastards published a report on Alouk, via Reliefweb, wailing its crocodile tears that the water had been “disrupted” twenty-three times since November 2019.

NATO klansman Mueller ignored the water war crimes of terrorists led by Erdogan, in Allouk
Golpista Ursula Mueller, Ass. SG for Humanitarian Affairs & Deputy Emergency Relief Coordinator, 24 October 2019. She brushed off Erdogan’s water war crimes against Syria
Months later, Mueller nearly frothing at the mouth, but not over water war crimes.
War crimes of bombing power plants & depriving civilians of drinking water have no relevance in the UN NATO klan hysteria to save al Qaeda in Syria. Mueller’s fixation on Tal Abyad for ‘cross-border’ deliveries — supported by the NATO gang — is likely because the Erdogan regime has occupied this area of Syria since October.
NATO UN klan seem to view water war crimes as facilitating Syria's destruction, on board with terrorists atrocities.

Turkey’s war crimes against Syria must obviously include ethnic cleansing of indigenous Syrians from their homeland, resulting in countless civilians being slaughtered in countless fratricidal terrorist attacks, as vicious ‘collateral damage,’ through crime of forced displacement, and simply to massacre them.

Ethnic cleansing is a war crime. Forced displacement is a war crime. Depriving civilians of potable water is a war crime.

The NATO mobsters ruling the UNSC — and the mob gang includes consummate imperialist SG Guterres — have plotted a new Sykes-Picot against Syria. This is why they avert their collective gaze to the Erdogan regime’s constant war crimes against Syria.

Dr. Faisal Mekdad, Syria’s Foreign and Expatriates Minister will speak at the upcoming UNGA meeting. He will arrive in NYC with his delegation that includes former Syrian Permanent Representative to the UN, and current Deputy Foreign and Expatriates Minister, Dr. Bashar al Jaafari, Dr. Abdhullah Hallaq, and Ehab Hamed.

Syria has put the UNSC and UNSG on notice that one way or another, Erdogan’s war crimes against the Levantine republic will be halted.

ISIS will be crushed and NATO will be ejected
Syria President Dr. Bashar al-Assad: “Every inch of Syria will be liberated”

— Miri Wood

Postscript:

The non-physician NYC Mayor de Blasio, who resurrected the ‘mistook’ racist Bloomberg Stop & Frisk in having his NYPD he was threatening to defund arrest a lot more black folk for breaching his arbitrary lockdown, who recently lied that an UNGA member said everybody had to get shot per de Blasio’s dictate, and who threatened to invade the international territory of the UN, against all border laws between that establishment and its host country, continues to threaten diplomats and heads of state arriving for the UNGA meeting. He still plans to invade the UN, according to recent news reports (not included in the above hyperlink report on his plan to expand his fiefdom.

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Erdogan Water War Crimes in Hasakah Continue; UN, ICRC Silent

https://syrianews.cc/erdogan-water-war-crimes-in-hasakah-continue-un-icrc-silent/embed/#?secret=VyC5IoHb0f

Erdogan Forces Kill a Woman in Indiscriminate Shelling of Houses in Hasakah Province

https://syrianews.cc/erdogan-forces-kill-a-woman-in-indiscriminate-shelling-of-houses-in-hasakah-province/embed/#?secret=OLFys6lhuW

Erdogan Terrorist Groups Infighting in Afrin Results in Civilian Casualties

Erdogan Kills 3 More Turkish Troops in Afrin, in Northwest of Syria

 ARABI SOURI 

Turkish army and al qaeda terrorists in northern Syria

The latest victims among NATO’s second-largest army in Erdogan’s criminal war against the Syrian people were caused by an attack carried out against their illegal outpost in the countryside of Afrin, Erdogan’s ministry of war confirmed the attack in a statement yesterday.

In response to the attack, Erdogan’s occupation forces shelled indiscriminately with heavy artillery bombing the villages of Burj Al-Qass, Maraanaz, and Soughaniyeh in the northern Aleppo countryside, Erdogan’s propaganda claimed they attacked posts of the PKK terrorists in those areas, these allegations are common by Erdogan’s propagandists whenever they commit war crimes.

Erdogan’s forces invaded multiple towns and cities in northern Syria taking advantage of Syria’s Armed forces and their allies fighting US-sponsored ISIS and other terrorist groups in over 40 fronts across the country and repelling Israel’s continuous bombings. The Turkish madman Erdogan sent thousands of Turkish Army’s soldiers as cannon fodders to protect the tens of thousands of terrorists of Al Qaeda, Uighurs, Afghanis, Chechen, and a host of other terrorist groups tasked to Israelize large areas of northern Syria within Erdogan’s larger dream to revive the most hated Ottoman sultanate.

NATO’s armies embedded with Al Qaeda and ISIS in northern Syria are a familiar scene, claims that the NATO coalition is fighting ISIS in Syria is meant for the consumption of ignorant citizens of NATO member states footing the bill from their hard-earned tax money for NATO’s illegal and criminal operations in Syria.

Despite continuous condemnations and calls to end the illegal incursion of the Turkish army and their sponsored terrorists to northern Syria, the Turkish madman continues to beef up his soldiers under claims he’s helping the Syrian people by replacing the owners of the land with his imported terrorists and their families. The Turkish army’s cannon fodders lost already hundreds of personnel killed and maimed in his anti-Islamic adventure.

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Western nations want ‘democracy’ in Syria so badly they close embassies and prevent Syrians from voting in presidential elections

 

Eva Bartlett

Syrian women in secular Syria. ©AFP photo

May 19, 2021, RT.com

*Blog version slightly longer

-by Eva K Bartlett

This week, Syrians around the world will vote in the 2021 Presidential elections (those in Syria will vote on May 26). That is, if Western nations re-open the embassies they so democratically shut years ago.

Western leaders hypocritically claimed concern for Syrians and wanted to ensure they live democratically – by funding and arming terrorists from around the world to slaughter them and destroy their homes, governmental buildings, and historic and cultural places–but continue to do everything in their power to make it difficult-to-impossible for Syrians to exercise their rights to vote for their president. 

Around 2012, most embassies in Western (and Gulf) countries closed, claiming they no longer recognized the Syrian government, claiming also the Syrian government was brutally attacking peaceful, democratically-minded, protesters. Those lies convinced many that this narrative was the truthful one (unbelievably, after the lies of WMDs in Iraq and the myriad other lies that sold wars, which I wrote about on the anniversary of the war on Syria).

But it is 2021, and by now we know that this was a premeditated and cruel war on the people of Syria, spurred forth by the media who truly do not care about the lives of Syrians.

Canada was one such country to self-righteously cut ties with the Syrian government (while covertly supporting terrorism in Syria, and later supporting neo-Nazis in Ukraine) and shutter Syrian embassies. 

Canada closed Syrian embassies in 2012, cutting diplomatic ties with Syria and expelling Syrian diplomats. but allowed consuls to remain, as their positions were administrative, not diplomatic.

In 2016, Canada terminated the Montreal honorary consul position which had served not only Syrians in eastern Canada but also eastern US.

A Toronto friend and Syrian Canadian, Lulwa Kassawat, told me that this year she again won’t be able to vote, thanks to Canada’s embassy closures. 

In April, she wrote on Facebook: 

“With elections coming up in Syria, no diplomatic representation in Canada for Syrian Canadians to vote, with more sanctions on Syria killing civilians, with illegal accusations of chemical attacks that were staged, what better way to reinforce our commitment than to stand by Syria and its people and President.

You may stop us from an election, but you cannot stop us from endorsing our President.”

Kevork Almassian, a Syrian living in Germany, has for years been relentlessly hounded by German media for his stance in support of his army and president, even lobbying for his deportation back to Syria. 

“If they succeed in deporting me before even deporting those who pose a security threat to Germany, including Islamist radicals who committed crimes in Germany, it’s a dangerous precedent. It’s essentially telling Syrians: shut up, don’t speak positively about your government. My case is very well known in Germany. Most pro-govt Syrians in Germany know me, because of the media campaign against me. Because of what has happened to me, many Syrians are afraid to go to demonstrations or to vote.” 

In the past two years, Almassian was chased, smeared, harassed and even physically attacked multiple times by the sympathizers of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and other terrorist groups. These attacks came after a smear campaign by the German media and Turkish-Qatari funded outlets. 

“The media is against patriotic Syrians, as is the government and most political parties. They portray the people who are with Assad as fascists.”  

For Syrian refugees in Germany, there are more factors than potential smears or assaults that could deter them from voting. Not having official refugee status (they have subsidiary protection), according to German law, if the war stops (or the German government changes its mind), they risk being deported back to Syria–even if they have a work permit or are studying at university. 

In 2014, although the Syrian embassy was open, the German government banned Syrians in Germany from voting. Police at embassies blocked people from entering to vote. Syrians did come to the embassy to vote, but police wouldn’t allow them in. 

This year, the German government also banned the Syrian community from voting. 

Syrian American Johnny Achi, told me:

“Just as in 2014, the closure of Syrian embassies makes it very hard for many millions of Syrians around the world to express their voices in what most countries around the world consider not just a right, but a duty. This year, as in 2014, many Syrians who can afford to must endure travel costs and travel to Syria if they wish to exercise their voting rights.”

The US closed diplomatic ties and pulled their ambassadors sooner than 2014, but still had a nominal Charge d’affaires. But then, according to Achi, just prior to the 2014 election, embassies were shuttered fully.

We had made a Facebook page announcing a rendezvous in DC, to show the world how wrong they were about Syria.

To save themselves the embarrassments of having thousands of Syrian patriots show up from all across the US with Syrian flags, signs and posters in support of the Syrian government and army, the Obama administration ordered the Syrian Embassy closed, just days before the election, and so did The UAE and many other capitals around the world.”

2014 Elections

Indeed, in 2014, Syrians flew from around the world to Damascus simply to vote, as the countries they reside in had closed their embassies. 

In Lebanon, where I was at the time, the voter turnout was astonishing, with the embassy opening an unscheduled second day, to accommodate all the Syrians who came to vote. 

As I wrote then, “Syrians crammed in one of an endless stream of buses, exited and continued on foot. The masses opted to walk the remaining few kilometres rather than sit in a traffic jam generated by the tens of thousands flocking to vote.” 

I walked with them and spent the better part of the afternoon speaking with Syrians about why they’d come to vote. 

An older woman from Aleppo sitting on the pavement off to the side of the road said her family had told her to stay home. “I’m ill, they were worried about me. But I will vote even if I die trying to do so.”

Her son, like most in the crowd, was emphatic in his support for President Assad. “The terrorist rebels are in my city. God bless Dr. Bashar al-Assad and the army. We don’t want anyone else.”

“Syria will get back its dignity,” said an engineering student from Tartous. “The ‘revolution’ is a lie, it’s a farce engineered by the West and Saudi Arabia, Qatar,” he said.

“We don’t want anyone else, we love him,” said another man nearby.

Others vied for their chance to praise how Syria was before the manufactured crisis began. “We had free health care, safety, our bread was subsidised. We were happy. We want Syria to be like it was,” was a widely shared sentiment.

The chorus of cheers and chanting was punctuated by the thud of the helicopter circling above, tight security to ensure that the elections were not derailed.

“We love him. I’m Sunni, not Alawi,” Walid, from Raqqa, noted. “They’re afraid our voices will be heard,” he said, regarding the many countries which will not allow Syrians to vote.

“I’m from Deir Ezzor,” said a voter. “ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) is in our area. We want Bashar al-Assad. The guy walks straight,” he said, with a gesture of his hand.

Another man, from Aleppo, reiterated what many already said. “There’s no revolution, absolutely not. People from around the world have pounced on Syria. People who cut off heads … what kind of revolution is that?”

Emphatically pro-Assad, he did say that the two other candidates were respected. “Maher al-Hajjar and Hassan al-Nouri, they are good. But not like Bashar, our hero.”

Formerly a teacher in Aleppo, he now works construction in Lebanon. “In another month or two, I’m returning to Syria, to stay.”

In Beirut’s Hamra, Syrians spoke of their failed attempts to reach the embassy.

“I tried to go earlier, but I couldn’t reach the embassy, the streets were packed from far away,” said Mona, a young hotel employee. “I’ll try again tomorrow. I’m not Alawi, by the way,” she said, laughing.

In a Hamra mini-mart, Abu Mohammed, from Sweida, commented on Ahmad Jarba, reportedly charged with drug trafficking, the candidate backed by Western countries.

“We don’t know him nor where he came from. We want one of us, a Syrian in Syria. People in Syria aren’t blind, we know this has been planned for years. They want to do to Syria what they did to Libya. Today, thousands went to the embassy. Why? Because we know Bashar is the right person. Be sure, if we didn’t want him, he wouldn’t have lasted three years.”

In spite of the second day of voting, there were still many Syrians in Lebanon who, because they hadn’t been able to vote, headed for the border crossing to try to vote in Syria. 

Days later in Damascus, voting stations were also kept open later than planned, to accommodate the high turnout. 

What many may not be aware of is that at the time of the 2014 presidential elections, Syrians in Syria braved terrorist bombings while going to the voting stations. 

Press TV reported:

“Syria’s official news agency SANA reported on Saturday that at least 39 people had lost their lives in the mortar attack on the election campaign rally in Syria’s southern city of Dara’a late on Thursday.

“According to the report, some 205 people were also wounded in the attack, while 14 of the injured are in critical condition.”

Even before voting day, terrorists heavily shelled cities around the country in areas not under their control, in an attempt to intimidate Syrians from casting votes the following week. 

On May 31, Press TV reported:

“Twenty people have been killed in mortar attacks carried out by foreign-backed militants on Syria’s northwestern city of Aleppo.

“Takfiri groups have stepped up their attacks against Syrians in several cities and towns as the country prepares for the presidential election on June 3.”

And, as I wrote a month later, in increased shelling, largely seen as vindictive attacks on Inauguration Day, July 16, terrorists fired 23 shells on Damascus. Syrian State media reported that four were killed and 30 injured by the mortars which targeted Shaalan district, Umayyad Square, and a park near the Sheraton Hotel.

2021 Elections 

After 14 visits to Syria over the years, some for months at a time, I can say in all honesty that Syrians overwhelmingly stand with their president and army.  Western and Gulf corporate and state-owned media would have people believe differently, but that is because they want to overthrow the president and install a puppet government favourable to their, and Israel’s, interests. 

But the polls show it as well. In the 2014 election, President Assad, “won with 88.7 percent, garnering 10,319,723 votes. According to Syria’s supreme constitutional court, 73.42 percent of some 15.8 million eligible voters took part in the elections.”

Journalist Sharmine Narwani at the time noted the cynicism of Western nations and media regarding this outcome, writing:

“Syria’s foes will go to the wall with claims of fraudulent votes, but they can hardly contest the visuals of millions of Syrians casting them.

“Which is why Western ‘democracies’ and many Arab allies have sought to inhibit the democratic process by obstructing Syrians from voting at their embassies. It is embarrassing for them then that thousands of Syrian refugees have crossed the Lebanese border to vote (Lebanon initially threatened they would not be able to return), and that Syrians from the United States, Kuwait, UAE, France, the Netherlands and elsewhere have chartered flights to Damascus so their votes can be counted.”

Likewise, I foresee more of such Western cynicism if, as expected, Assad wins this year’s elections.

But, that is just a case of sour grapes. The West lost their regime-change project. 

It gives me consolation that, unlike in 2014, this year terrorists won’t be able to bomb most Syrian cities as they have been forced out in the intervening years, and peace has returned to areas they once occupied. 

While Syrians struggle unbearably under the cruel and sadistic Western sanctions that strangle them, there is at least hope that in the future, more nations will normalize relations with the country. Perhaps then, America and Co will toss in the hat and retreat to lick their wounds, letting Syrians finally live in peace. 

After his recent visit to Syria, Johnny Achi told me, “When I was in Syria I met with some high ranking officials that assured me that by next year, around this time, dozens of embassies will re-open in Syria and full diplomatic ties will be restored between Syria and many of the boycotting nations including many Europeans.” 

Syrians voting in the upcoming elections will be, as in 2014, voting in defiance of the attempts of America and her allies to overthrow their government. And it will be a momentous occasion marking Syria’s victory in the brutal and completely unnecessary 10-year war.

Celebrations in Homs, Syria (dubbed “capitol of the revolution” by the delusional crowd) 6 days after the 2014 elections in Syria.

NATO Supremacists Continue anti-Syria Chemical Hoax UNSC Meetings

 MIRI WOOD 

Syrian Ambassador Jaafari addressing the supremacists at the UNSC

NATO supremacists klansmen running the United Nations held their umpteenth chemical hoax anti-Syria UNSC meeting on 3 February. The UN press corps had immediately chosen not to publish a release on the bad infinity meeting, seemingly too busy in sharing the announcements of various new (temporary) permanent members engaging in ring-kissing meetings with Secretary-General Antonio Gutteres (a small photo gallery of the SG’s colonialist leanings found here).

These monthly reruns are held under the guise of implementing UNSCR 2118, which was passed on 27 September 2013; UNSCR 242 that was passed in 1967 not only does not require monthly meetings on implementation, but also does not require any resolutions to condemn occupying forces from treating wounded terrorists, nor to condemn occupying forces when they bomb from the region, nor to condemn presidents who illegally make presents of the occupied region.

state-of-art-medical
When it comes to terrorists on the occupied Golan, Israel spares no US taxpayer expense in state of art medical care

Before taking a perfunctory glance at the hypocritical arrogance of the P3 Security Council member supremacists, and their customary vomiting up lies and then eating their own, and each other’s emesis, like ravenous dogs, the following article will serve as a refresher course from the first threats to use chemical weapons against Syria, beginning 5 December 2012. It was published 2 March 2017, one month and two days before Jahbat al Nusra terrorists staged its heinous murders of mostly children who were kidnapped, for the supremacists and their media dogs, in Khan Sheikhoun.

True History of FSA Chemical Weapons Threats against Syria

https://syrianews.cc/true-history-fsa-chemical-weapons-threats-syria/embed/#?secret=27AGpDFILd


Let us take a short trip down memory lane, followed by an amnesia antidote on the chemical terror attack leading up to UNSCR 2118 (2013), possibly the resolution that incited the most excitement among the supremacists running the United Nations — that bastion of peace and security that continues to inversely unleash mayhem throughout the world.

Western P3 supremacists France, Britain, and the US have extensive histories as the world leaders in genocide, and also in deployment of weapons of mass destruction, including chemical ones. France called its nuclear bombings of Algerian tribes, Gerboise Bleue; Britain gassed Russia and also “uncivilized tribes” in Iraq; America’s Truman chuckled before telling his people that he had used the country’s two nuclear bombs against Japan, and the US has consistently used white phosphorus as an alleged incendiary device. By naming the chemical weapon white phosphorus ”incendiary device,” it becomes exempt from being considered a chemical weapon. Human beings destroyed by them are merely ”collateral damage,” oh well.

Photos of Algerian survivors of France nuclear bombings seem to be in permanent lockdown.

Let us now do a short decontamination of the NATO supremacists’ convenient amnesia:

  • The US joined the Chemical Weapons Convention in 1997. The US still has over 3,000 tons of CWs that have somehow not yet been destroyed. There was no UNSC resolution when the US joined; therefore there is no ability to hold monthly meetings for its implementation.
  • In December 2012, threats of unleashing chemical attacks were uploaded to social media. The threats came from within Turkey. The criminals used rabbits in two fatal experiments; the first appeared to have used VX. In the second, the savage demonstration, the claim was made that a quick-acting poison would be used to pollute the Alsinn water supply to Lattakia. Dr. Jaafari requested a UN investigation, which was ignored (comparing the 21 December 2012 rabbit video with the original Khan Sheikhoun snuff porn video uploaded by the al Qaeda White Helmets on 4 April 2017, this author states with reasonable certainty that this was the same chemical poison.
  • On 19 March 2013, terrorists unleashed weapons-grade chlorine on Khan al Asal. Two dozen soldiers and civilians were murdered. Ambassador Jaafari’s request one day later, for a UN-OPCW investigation was sabotaged by the British and French ambassadors. OPCW investigators sent to inspect Khan al Asal five months after evidence would have been degraded arrived just before the 21 August Ghouta attack, and were diverted.
  • In May 2013, American illegal in Aleppo, Matthew VanDyke emailed former ladies’ undergarments salesman cum unemployed couch potato and gamer Eliot Higgins that terrorists had ”small quantities” of chemical weapons, and were prepared to use them against civilians, to blame on the Syrian government. 
  • In early August 2013, moderate FSA terrorists — including criminals from Qatar’s al Jazeera — raided villages in Lattakia, slaughtering men, and kidnapping women and their children. Some of the abductees were identified by their corpses shown after the terrorist chemical attack in al Ghouta, 21 August 2013. Terrorists later complained that they did not know that the missiles from al Saud contained chemical agents, that Prince Bandar should have sent instructions on how to use them.
  • The world stood on edge as Obama and other western supremacists considered the obliteration of the S. A. R., because Western-supported terrorists had used chemical weapons. Syria acceded to the CWC on 14 October 2013.
  • The UN-OPCW held several meetings high-fiving each other for the speed at which Syria’s CWs were collected and obliterated (some photos, here.). Nobody mentioned that the UN-OPCW came under missile fire via Madman Erdogan, though, while at the Lattakia port — daintily described as “volatile security conditions” in the 4 June 2014 UN news report on OPCW-UN Special Coordinator Sigrid Kaag’s address to the Security Council.
  • Secretary of State John Kerry — whose ‘slip of the tongue‘ opened the door to Syria joining the CWC to avoid being Libyanized — told Meet the Press in 2014: “We struck a deal where we got 100 percent of the chemical weapons out.” 
  • As literature has taught us there is no good outcome to making a deal with the devil (the best possible outcome is a regrouping during postponement– in this case, western supremacists — the P3-headed demon lead by Trump, bombed Syria on 7 April 2017 because a Brit illegal whose medical license was permanently revoked, told CNN that Syria had bombed Syria with chemical weapons. Almost one year later, the tripartite war criminals again bombed Syria, based on the lies of malignant sociopaths in Douma, who kidnap, murder, and one who somehow was in possession of a Syrian woman’s dead fetus.
White Helmets
How did a White Helmet come into possession of a dead fetus & why does this pervert play with the body?

On 20 January 2020, an Arria Formula meeting was held on Douma, because the NATO supremacists refused to give a Security Council audience to the OPCW’s own Ian Henderson, who led the investigations (Syria News reminds our readers that the SAR immediately requested an investigation by UN-OPCW, and that the investigations were postponed after members came under sniper fire by the same terrorists who had slaughtered dozens of Syrians in Douma, uploaded what should have been recognized as their crimes, to social media, while screaming ‘chemical weapons.’). This was the same SC that refused to hear Jose Bustani in October 2020, on the pretense that he had not participated in the investigations, after which the OPCW censored people with questions, but limiting comments to its Twitter account, to the insider elite tagees.

OPCW has sold itself to NATO warmongers & functions as press liaison for al Qaeda in Syria.

Upon digesting the above, it comes as no surprise that the tripartite aggressor UN representatives — speaking for the world’s leaders in genocide, colonialism, and all other forms of supremacy — were the unified, barking rabid dogs of war, unabashedly unashamed by their hypocrisy and arrogance. The UK — the country whose Tony Blair has not only never been indicted for his war crimes involving his WMD lies about Iraq — lied that “Syria’s declaration…can still not be considered accurate & complete.” France — which never forgave Syria for ejecting French occupiers — again announced its support of al Qaeda in the SAR, functioning as press liaison to terrorists of Ghouta, Khan Sheikhoun, Ltamenah, Douma. The US — which released al Baghdadi from an Iraqi jail and sent him to Jordan with a $10,000,000 slush fund to train DAESH savages — demanded Syria to be held accountable for the terror inflicted on the country by the degenerate criminals it has trained, armed, and deployed into the country.

Utilizing his unique and uncanny skill of throwing those proverbial pearls before swine while maintaining the protocol of true diplomatic language, Dr. Jaafari again meticulously explained reality to the P3 NATO klan supremacists — and to their dancing House Servants — that Syria joined the OPCW 2013, that Syria relinquished all of its chemical weapons stockpile, that Syria has engaged in full cooperation with the OPCW.

Nonetheless, the barking hyenas continue to use these bad infinity “chemical files” as another criminal weapon — “political blackmail” — in the criminal foreign war imposed upon his country.https://www.youtube.com/embed/ky6yXqXSlRg?start=2&feature=oembed

Syria News reminds our readers that on 22 November. Syria’s President Dr. Bashar al Assad appointed Dr. Jaafari as Deputy Foreign and Expatriates Minister.

Though it was beginning to look as though His Excellency, Minister Dr. Jaafari were to give new meaning to Permanent Representative, this 3 February address to the NATO junta supremacists ruling the United Nations, was his final act of pearl-throwing.

— Miri Wood

Postscript:

Due to circumstances beyond her control, the author was unable to issue this essential report at an earlier time.

Dr. Jaafari took his oath of office on 14 February.

Foreign and Expatriates Minister Faisal Mekdad attends Dr. Jaafari’s swearing in, by President Assad, 14 February.

Recommended reading:

Syria’s Jaafari to UNSC NATO Klan: Let My People Breathe

https://syrianews.cc/syria-jaafari-to-unsc-nato-klan-let-my-people-breathe/embed/#?secret=IasWRsHfCX

Kurd SDF Official Defects and Exposes the Group’s Relationship with ISIS

https://syrianews.cc/kurd-sdf-official-defects-and-exposes-the-groups-relationship-with-isis/embed/#?secret=jHkMXVsMLR

Please help support Syria News:

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SDF Current Official Bombed Khan Al-Asal with Chemical Weapon in 2013

Kurdish SDF Relationship with ISIS and FSA chemical attack on Khan Al-Asal

 ARABI SOURI 

“The former Free Syrian Army ‘moderate terrorist’ who bombed the city of Khan Al-Asal in Aleppo countryside with chemical weapons in 2013 is currently an official in the SDF Administration in Manbij!”

A leader in the US-sponsored Kurdish SDF separatist armed group in Manbij, Northern Syria, defects and exposes the relationship between ISIS, Al Qaeda, the FSA, and the SDF after his colleagues accuse him of dealing with the Syrian government.

In his firing back at his former colleagues, this Kurdish SDF leader exposes one of the main chapters of the so-called Syrian Chemical File, the file used relentlessly and repeatedly by the NATO member states at the United Nations Security Council to demonize the Syrian state and the Syrian armed forces accusing them, the victims, of using chemical weapons against their own people and in areas the Syrian Army has already won and is entering it in few hours. NATO members demonizing the victims, whitewashing the crimes of their own terrorists to justify their massive efforts in destabilizing Syria and effecting the regime change policy they and their regional minions have forever dreamt of.

This is part of the video released by this former leader of the Kurdish SDF where he speaks of his group’s connections with ISIS and with the FSA, naming, in particular, the person who carried out the bombing of Khan Al-Asal in 2013 who is currently an official in the SDF ‘Administration’ in the city of Manbij, transcript follows below:

https://videopress.com/embed/jejMnsxv?preloadContent=metadata&hd=1The video is also on YouTube (for now) and on BitChute.

Transcript of the English translation of the video:

I asked, “Jahid”, why did you act with us like this? You made us send Zaki Al-Hassan to a place and arrested him from there, and today you released Zaki Al-Hassan? He said: Zaki Al-Hassan is an intelligence officer with Haval Nahir, and it is not permissible for us to arrest Zaki Al-Hassan or dismiss him from work.

If Zaki al-Hassan is a prince of ISIS, and so you put him in a responsible position, we may not dismiss Zaki al-Hassan from his work or talk to him, who is one of the princes of ISIS, and at the same time, you accuse us of working for the regime.

It’s not only Zaki Al-Hassan, but I have also written down several names who work for you in the (SDF) Administration with your knowledge or without your knowledge:

There is Noura Al-Hamid from the village of Al-Qishla who used to work for ISIS at the Al-Furat Hospital and today, Noura Al-Hamid is a deputy in the Executive Council of the “SDF.”

There is Ali Al-Jamili, a leader in the “Jund Al-Haramain” during the days of the Free Army, Ali Al-Jamili, until this moment, is in the city of Manbij is bragging that he’s called ‘Chemical Ali’ because he was in Jund al-Haramain and he claims that he bombed the city of Khan al-Asal with chemical (weapon), and Ali al-Jamili is responsible for Religions affairs in the city of Manbij, and he has a son cadre in the Al-Jazeera region.

End of the transcript.

Longer version of the confession in Arabic:

The Syrian government has repeatedly called on the United Nations to investigate the chemical attack in the city of Khan Al-Asal in 2013, the first of a series of chemical attacks. The United Nations Secretary-General at the time Ban Ki-Moon agreed to send a team to investigate the attack but under the condition that they will just prove there was an attack without identifying the criminals behind it.

On the day the team was just leaving their hotel in Damascus heading to Khan Al-Asal in the north, they receive a phone call from the UN SG ordering them to investigate the infamous Ghouta chemical attack. Coincidences never happen in politics.

H.E. Jaafari Decries UN – OPCW 90th anti-Syria Liars Meeting, Calls for Closure of Phony ‘Syria File’

https://syrianews.cc/h-e-jaafari-decries-un-opcw-90th-anti-syria-liars-meeting-calls-for-closure-of-phony-syria-file/embed/#?secret=jSlqE0juEP

Syria will NOT Cooperate with the OPCW new Investigation Team

https://syrianews.cc/syria-will-not-cooperate-with-the-opcw-new-investigation-team/embed/#?secret=ong0qwttLJ

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Deir Ezzor is a Sign of Things to Come

Deir Ezzor is a Sign of Things to Come

Source

January 23, 2021

The billowing wheat fields of Syria once were a staple that kept the people sated through times of struggle. Until the beginning of the war, Syria was a net food exporter, providing grain to neighboring countries and enjoying a healthy supply more than sufficient to feed its population. When the attempted overthrow of Bashar al-Assad began in 2011, the nation collapsed into chaos and food production plummeted. Syria’s borders shrank to a third of their pre-war size as ISIS took over huge swathes of desert, and US-backed Kurdish forces invaded the country’s northeast under the cover of fighting terrorism.

Russia’s intervention in 2015 secured the highly populated coastal regions, finally bringing an end to the jihadist occupation of Aleppo and removing ISIS from the country’s center. The coastal cities were hardened with the creation of permanent Russian bases in Khmeimim and Tartus, and Bashar al-Assad’s secular government was kept in power. The strategically significant northeast however, was lost.

The governorate of Deir Ezzor in northeastern Syria splits evenly across the Euphrates River, and is the site of an emerging fault line between the Empire and Resistance Axis. On the West bank of the Euphrates, Bashar al-Assad’s government rules, while the East is occupied by Kurdish and American forces. Unable to achieve complete regime change, the Empire has shifted gears and now is waging a war primarily based on starvation. Limiting the flow of food and energy in the country may not even succeed in directly impeding military operations, but it can effectively turn Syria into a third world country by grinding civilian life to a halt and starving the population.

Syria’s occupied northeast produces 60% of the country’s wheat and 95% of the country’s oil: 400,000 barrels per day of oil production has been lost due to the Kurdish invasion. The formerly oil-rich nation now pumps a mere 20,000 bpd and relies on Iranian tankers to import energy. These tankers are increasingly intercepted by Western powers as part of this war of starvation. Additionally, in the last two years five separate sanctions bills have been passed in Washington, targeting the country’s oil and grain trade.

Energy is not just needed for the tanks and planes of Assad’s military, it is required to power the factories, agricultural operations, businesses, and homes of the Syrian people. Strangling the flow of energy and food into Syria has created spillover effects that have crippled the nation’s economy. With no power for tractors to cultivate wheat or trucks to ship food, the remaining agricultural resources have become severely underutilized and the nation is at risk of famine.

This is nothing new. Just recall what US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright said when confronted with the fact that over half a million Iraqi children had died of starvation due to sanctions:

We think the price is worth it

Any price is “worth it” because Iraq, Syria, and Iran have been targeted for destruction for decades, part of the Empire’s longstanding plan to conquer all of Central Asia. We see the antecedents of such a foreign policy in the Wolfowitz Doctrine, the “Clean Break” white paper, and General Wesley Clark’s confession that these nations were slated for regime change well before whichever casus belli that prompted American intervention was manufactured. In addition to the territorial agenda, control of the planet’s oil resources upholds the phenomenon of petrodollar recycling, defending the dollar’s status as world reserve currency.

Accordingly, the Empire has no plans to leave northeast Syria. While the media spun up a narrative about Trump “abandoning the Kurds,” nothing could be further from the truth. The Trump administration gave drilling approval in the region to a little known oil company called Delta Crescent Energy LLC. One of the partners at this firm named James Reese is an ex Delta Force agent who served as a commander and operations officer in the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan. Other partners include international oil executives and diplomats. These players will collaborate with the Kurds to pump oil through Syria and Iraq while fulfilling Washington’s agenda of denying the Syrian civilization the resources needed for survival.

So while imperial and resistance forces patrol either side of the Euphrates, we can see the new front in the northeast as a microcosm of what will come as a hawkish administration takes the helm in Washington.

On Aug 23 2020, Russian major general Vyacheslav Gladkikh was assassinated by IED while in Deir Ezzor governorate, the highest ranking soldier to be killed in the war. Immediately prior to his death, the general was coordinating with local Arab militiamen, giving us a window into the strategy of the Resistance Axis in the region. It has been the goal of Assad and the Russians to reintegrate this crucial territory by allying with the Arab majority in the governorate, who are being oppressed by the ruling Kurdish minority. Arab protests and discontent with the corrupt SDF leadership have accelerated, so while Western media blames General Gladkikh’s assassination on ISIS we can see other clear beneficiaries.

Speaking of ISIS, the way northeast Syria has evolved begs the question: what was the purpose of ISIS? Let us first review the multiple channels of American support:

1. Manpower: Immediately after the invasion of Iraq, America unilaterally disbanded the Iraqi army without pay, despite warnings that this would create a pool of manpower for terrorism. Many of these soldiers later filled the ranks of ISIS

2. Supply abandonment: M1A1 Abrams tanks, LAVs, and 2,300 Hummers were left conveniently unguarded in lots for ISIS to acquire during its rise

3. Direct airdrop: In Oct 2014, the US was caught airdropping weapons and ammunition directly to ISIS fighters and passed it off as an accident

4. Osmosis: Cash, supplies, and weaponry delivered to “vetted” rebel groups through the CIA’s Timber Sycamore program often ended up directly in ISIS hands. In one case a UN audit determined that TOW missiles were controlled by ISIS less than two months after leaving an American production line

5. Side switching: When ISIS began to fall many of its fighters simply left and joined other US-aligned groups such as the FSA and SDF

6. US ally funding: Leaked Clinton emails explicitly stated that Qatar and Saudi Arabia were providing direct financing

What of the strategic importance of ISIS? At its territorial height, the Islamic State was essentially a band down the center of Syria that separated Assad’s coastal strongholds from the oil and farmland necessary to the nation’s functioning. It also fulfilled the important role of impeding Iranian access to the region, one of the reasons for which Qasem Soleimani led Shi’ite brigades against ISIS to open up corridors of support for Syria and Lebanon.

And of course we cannot forget that the US had pockets of soldiers in ISIS territory throughout the entire conflict, monitoring the situation. The outcome in the Syrian war was rigged from the beginning, as even in the event that Assad managed to defeat ISIS and avoid regime change, the Empire would never allow him to achieve full territorial reintegration.

As soon as Russia began to reverse the tide in the conflict, the US swooped in to “liberate” the oil fields. American anti-ISIS bombings were greatly exagerrated (at one point PBS even took Russian bombing footage and labeled it as American). Furthermore these operations were concentrated in the northeast, while Syrians, Iraqis, Russians, and Iranians were allowed to do the leg work on the ground against ISIS. Essentially, Assad reclaimed infertile desert terrain at an enormous human cost and just as his forces reached Deir Ezzor the Empire took the resource-rich northeast and bombed any Syrian crossing of the Euphrates.

Merely one day after the inauguration of the Biden administration in Washington, the US began transferring hundreds of soldiers from Iraq to northeastern Syria in order to harden the imperial presence. Even under the Trump administration a ninth US army base in Deir Ezzor was commissioned in October, directly facing Syrian military positions west of the Euphrates. The new cabinet is stacked with career advocates of regime change, so we can foresee that the border in northeast Syria will be a debut at which the forces of imperialism seek to demonstrate their fanatical commitment to “involvement in the region.”

While unheard of by most Americans, this northern governorate is a litmus test for what is to come in the next four years of foreign policy. Whether it transforms into a frozen conflict zone like Donbass or the site of disastrous great power confrontation, it is a clear sign of the Empire’s unwillingness to “go gentle into that good night.” Though the lines in Deir Ezzor may already be drawn, it appears that a clash in the Idlib region is on the horizon as Turkish forward observation posts are abandoned and rumors circulate of heavy artillery moving to the border.

All eyes remain on Syria as the people bear the cost of a war of starvation and the Empire seeks to avenge its greatest humiliation at the hands of Russia.


The Ister is a researcher of financial markets and geopolitics. Author of The Ister: Escape America

Related Videos

2 Children Killed and 10 Others Injured in a Landmine Explosion in Daraa

Landmine explosion in Syria - Archive photo - انفجار لغم أرضي سورية

ARABI SOURI 

Two children were killed on the spot and ten other children were injured in a landmine explosion in the city of al-sheik Maskeen (Maskin), northern Daraa countryside.

The victims and the injured children were rushed to the National Hospital of Daraa and the National Hospital of Izraa.

A spokesman for the Daraa Police Department stated that ‘a landmine was detonated in the Eastern Neighborhood in al-sheik Maskeen in the northern Daraa countryside yesterday, January 11, 2021, in a group of young children killing two of them and injuring ten others.’ The police spokesman added that most of the victims are from the same family.

Syria is suffering massively from the tens of thousands of landmines and IEDs (Improvised Explosive Devices) planted by the NATO-sponsored ‘freedom fighters’ of Al Qaeda FSA and of ISIS in all the areas they infested. In addition to planting a large number of military-grade landmines, gifted by the generous US and European taxpayers, the terrorists were making their own explosive devices in different shapes and sizes, some of which are like the usual household items. The terrorists would then spread their killing tools in its designated areas before they flee in order to continue killing and maiming Syrians, especially children who many of them were killed or lost limbs when picking up toys that were stuffed with explosives.

The task of demining and cleaning the regions newly liberated from NATO-sponsored ‘freedom fighters’ is overwhelming, to say the least, and it’s overwhelming for capable countries let alone a country that is still fighting terrorist groups in different parts of its territories, while it’s under a blockade and under inhumane draconian sanctions by the USA and its European minions preventing the Syrian state from acquiring needed tools to clear areas of the explosives and also impeding the procurement of medicine and medical tools and equipment.

Friendly civilized countries have been helping the Syrian state to clear the liberated areas from the explosives but those same countries are under attacks and sanctions as well by NATO and stooges.

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Related

FSA Terrorist Aakef Zaki Killed by Unknown Gunmen in Daraa Countryside

 ARABI SOURI

NATO terrorist Aakef Zaki killed in Daraa

FSA terrorist and top wanted by the Syrian authorities in Daraa the so-called Aakef Zaki was killed in East Karak town in the eastern Daraa countryside south of Syria.

The NATO terrorist and former commander of the so-called ‘Martyrs of Eastern Karak’, one of the armed groups of the Al Qaeda FSA terrorist organization was shot dead in front of his house yesterday 7th of December, by unknown gunmen.

Aakef refused to join the large-scale reconciliation efforts in the southern Syrian province, the reconciliation led by the Russian Reconciliation Center in Syria returned thousands of people to their normal lives, some of the radical commanders refused to join the reconciliation and continued their attacks against the Syrian authorities, civilians, and notables in the region, taking advantage of the protection provided by Trump forces in the Tanf area southeast of Syria.

The killed terrorist was responsible for a number of attacks, kidnaps, field executions, and lootings in the southern Syrian provinces of Daraa and Sweida. On the 8th of last month, November, an armed terrorist group carried out an attack against a Syrian Army checkpoint to the west of the Eastern Karak town.

There were at least 34 terrorist attacks in the southern region post the reconciliation, they included the assassination of 24 persons, wounding of 8 others, two failed assassination attempts, including 18 of his former colleagues of the FSA fighters who joined the reconciliation. The terrorists shot dead 22 of the targeted victims while committed field execution of two others who were shot after being kidnapped.

Trump maintains a large number of his forces in Syria, mainly in the northeastern region bordering Iraq, and the southeastern region of Tanf in the depth of the Syrian desert bordering Iraq and Jordan. The Trump forces in the Tanf area protect members of the ISIS-affiliated group Maghawir Thawra which also runs the infamous Rukban concentration camp where thousands of Syrian refugees are held against their will in horrific conditions. Trump forces illegally positioned in Tanf also facilitated some of Israel’s bombings inside Syria and Iraq.

ISIS terrorists who committed the heinous massacre in the remote desert villages of Sweida province in the early morning hours of July 25th, 2018 fled to the same protected area by the Trump forces in Tanf. The Sweida massacre resulted in slaughtering 215 residents in their houses, injuring 180 others, and kidnapped 27 women and children.

The killing of Aakef Zaki will not help in uncovering much of the information needed by the Syrian authorities about the massacres and crimes committed in the southern region, it would have been much better if he was arrested to expose his accomplices and tell their whereabouts.

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Leaked Docs Expose Massive Syria Propaganda Operation Waged by Western Govt Contractors and Media

Source

Leaked Docs Expose Massive Syria Propaganda Operation Waged by Western Govt  Contractors and Media — Strategic Culture

September 26, 2020

Western government-funded intelligence cutouts trained Syrian opposition leaders, planted stories in media outlets from BBC to Al Jazeera, and ran a cadre of journalists. A trove of leaked documents exposes the propaganda network.

Ben NORTON

Leaked documents show how UK government contractors developed an advanced infrastructure of propaganda to stimulate support in the West for Syria’s political and armed opposition.

Virtually every aspect of the Syrian opposition was cultivated and marketed by Western government-backed public relations firms, from their political narratives to their branding, from what they said to where they said it.

The leaked files reveal how Western intelligence cutouts played the media like a fiddle, carefully crafting English- and Arabic-language media coverage of the war on Syria to churn out a constant stream of pro-opposition coverage.

US and European contractors trained and advised Syrian opposition leaders at all levels, from young media activists to the heads of the parallel government-in-exile. These firms also organized interviews for Syrian opposition leaders on mainstream outlets such as BBC and the UK’s Channel 4.

More than half of the stringers used by Al Jazeera in Syria were trained in a joint US-UK government program called Basma, which produced hundreds of Syrian opposition media activists.

Western government PR firms not only influenced the way the media covered Syria, but as the leaked documents reveal, they produced their own propagandistic pseudo-news for broadcast on major TV networks in the Middle East, including BBC Arabic, Al Jazeera, Al Arabiya, and Orient TV.

These UK-funded firms functioned as full-time PR flacks for the extremist-dominated Syrian armed opposition. One contractor, called InCoStrat, said it was in constant contact with a network of more than 1,600 international journalists and “influencers,” and used them to push pro-opposition talking points.

Another Western government contractor, ARK, crafted a strategy to “re-brand” Syria’s Salafi-jihadist armed opposition by “softening its image.” ARK boasted that it provided opposition propaganda that “aired almost every day on” major Arabic-language TV networks.

Virtually every major Western corporate media outlet was influenced by the UK government-funded disinformation campaign exposed in the trove of leaked documents, from the New York Times to the Washington Post, CNN to The Guardian, the BBC to Buzzfeed.

The files confirm reporting by journalists including The Grayzone’s Max Blumenthal on the role of ARK, the US-UK government contractor, in popularizing the White Helmets in Western media. ARK ran the social media accounts of the White Helmets, and helped turn the Western-funded group into a key propaganda weapon of the Syrian opposition.

The leaked documents consist mainly of material produced under the auspices of the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office. All of the firms named in the files were contracted by the British government, but many also were running “multi-donor projects” that received funding from the governments of the United States and other Western European countries.

In addition to demonstrating the role these Western intelligence cutouts played in shaping media coverage, the documents shine light on the British government program to train and arm rebel groups in Syria.

Other materials show how London and Western governments worked together to build a new police force in opposition-controlled areas.

Many of these Western-backed opposition groups in Syria were extremist Salafi-jihadists. Some of the UK government contractors whose activities are exposed in these leaked documents were in effect supporting Syrian al-Qaeda affiliate Jabhat al-Nusra and its fanatical offshoots.

The documents were obtained by a group calling itself Anonymous, and were published under a series of files entitled, “Op. HMG [Her Majesty’s Government] Trojan Horse: From Integrity Initiative To Covert Ops Around The Globe. Part 1: Taming Syria.” The unidentified leakers said they aim to “expose criminal activity of the UK’s FCO and secret services,” stating, “We declare war on the British neocolonialism!”

The Grayzone was not able to independently verify the authenticity of the documents. However, the contents tracked closely with reporting on Western destabilization and propaganda operations in Syria by this outlet and many others.

UK Foreign Office and military wage media war on Syria

A leaked UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office report from 2014 reveals a joint operation with the Ministry of Defence and the Department for International Development to support “strategic communications, research, monitoring and evaluation and operational support to Syrian opposition entities.”

The UK FOC stated clearly that this campaign consisted of “creating network linkages between political movements and media outlets,” by the “building of local independent media platforms.”

The British government planned “Mentoring, training and coaching for enhanced delivery of media services, including digital and social media.”

Its goal was “to provide PR and media handling trainers, as well as technical staff, such as cameramen, webmasters and interpreters,” along with the “production of speeches, press releases and other media communications.”

An additional 2017 government document explains clearly how Britain funded the “selection, training, support and communications mentoring of Syrian activists who share the UK’s vision for a future Syria… and who will abide by a set of values that are consistent with UK policy.”

This initiative entailed British government funding “to support Syrian grassroots media activism within both the civilian and armed opposition spheres,” and was targeted at Syrians living in both “extremist and moderate” opposition-held territory.

In other words, the UK Foreign Office and military crafted plans to wage a comprehensive media war on Syria. To establish an infrastructure capable of managing the propaganda blitz, Britain paid a series of government contractors, including ARK, The Global Strategy Network (TGSN), Innovative Communication & Strategies (InCoStrat), and Albany.

The work of these firms overlapped, and some collaborated in their projects to cultivate the Syrian opposition.

Western government contractor ARK plays the media like the fiddle

One of the main British government contractors behind the Syria regime-change scheme was called ARK (Analysis Research Knowledge).

ARK FZC is based in Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates. It brands itself as a humanitarian NGO, claiming it “was created in order to assist the most vulnerable,” by establishing a “social enterprise,  empowering local communities through the provision of agile and sustainable interventions to create greater stability, opportunity and hope for the future.”

In reality ARK is an intelligence cutout that functions as an arm of Western interventionism.

In a leaked document it filed with the British government, ARK said its “focus since 2012 has been delivering highly effective, politically-and conflict-sensitive Syria programming for the governments of the United Kingdom, United States, Denmark, Canada, Japan and the European Union.”

ARK boasted of overseeing $66 million worth of contracts to support pro-opposition efforts in Syria.

On its website, ARK lists all of these governments as clients, as well as the United Nations.

ARK contractor Syria UK US Australia Canada

In its Syria operations, ARK worked together with another UK contractor called The Global Strategy Network (TGSN), which is directed by Richard Barrett, a former director of global counter-terrorism at MI6.

ARK apparently had operatives on the ground inside Syria at the beginning of the regime-change attempt in 2011, reporting to the UK FCO that “ARK staff are in regular contact with activists and civil society actors whom they initially met during the outbreak of protests in spring 2011.”

The UK contractor boasted an “extensive network of civil society and community actors that ARK has helped through a dedicated capacity building centre ARK established in Gaziantep,” a city in southern Turkey that has been a base of intelligence operations against the Syrian government.

ARK played a central role in developing the foundations of the Syrian political opposition’s narrative. In one leaked document, the firm took credit for the “development of a core Syrian opposition narrative,” which was apparently crafted during a series of workshops with opposition leaders sponsored by the US and UK governments.

ARK trained all levels of the Syrian opposition in communications, from “citizen journalism workshops with Syrian media activists, to working with senior members of the National Coalition to develop a core communications narrative.”

The firm even oversaw the PR strategy for the Supreme Military Council (SMC), the leadership of the official armed wing of Syria’s opposition, the Free Syrian Army (FSA). ARK created a complex PR campaign to “provide a ‘re-branding’ of the SMC in order to distinguish itself from extremist armed opposition groups and to establish the image of a functioning, inclusive, disciplined and professional military body.”

ARK admitted that it sought to whitewash Syria’s armed opposition, which had been largely dominated by Salafi-jihadists, by “Softening the FSA Image.”

ARK contractor Syria soften FSA image

ARK took the lead in developing a massive network of opposition media activists in Syria, and openly took credit for inspiring protests inside the country.

In its training centers in Syria and southern Turkey, the Western government contractor reported, “More than 150 activists have been trained and equipped by ARK on topics from the basics of camera handling, lighting, and sound to producing reports, journalistic safety, online security, and ethical reporting.”

The firm flooded Syria with opposition propaganda. In just six months, ARK reported that 668,600 of its print products were distributed inside Syria, including “posters, flyers, informative booklets, activity books and other campaign-related materials.”

In one document spelling out the UK contractors’ communications operations in Syria, ARK and the British intelligence cutout TGSN boasted of overseeing the following media assets inside the country: 97 video stringers, 23 writers, 49 distributors, 23 photographers, 19 in-country trainers, eight training centers, three media offices, and 32 research officers.

ARK emphasized that it had “well-established contacts” with some of the top media outlets in the world, naming Reuters, the New York Times, CNN, the BBC, The Guardian, the Financial Times, The Times, Al Jazeera, Sky News Arabic, Orient TV, and Al Arabiya.

The UK contractor added, “ARK has provided regular branded and unbranded content to key pan-Arab and Syria-focused satellite TV channels such as Al Jazeera, Al Arabiya, BBC Arabic, Orient TV, Aleppo Today, Souria al-Ghadd, and Souria al-Sha’ab since 2012.”

“ARK products promoting HMG (Her Majesty’s Government) priorities by fostering attitudinal and behavioural change are broadcast almost every day on pan-Arab channels,” the firm bragged. “In 2014, 20 branded and un-branded Syria reports were produced on average by ARK each month and broadcast on major pan-Arab television channels such as Al Arabiya, Al Jazeera, and Orient TV.”

“ARK has almost daily conversations with channels and weekly meetings to engage and understand editorial preferences,” the Western intelligence cutout said.

The firm also took credit for placing 10 articles per month in pan-Arab newspapers such as Al Hayat and Asharq Al-Awsat.

US-UK program Basma cultivates Syrian media activists

The Syrian opposition media war was organized within the framework of a project called Basma. ARK worked with other Western government contractors through Basma in order to train Syrian opposition activists.

With funding from both the US and UK governments, Basma developed into an enormously influential platform. Its Arabic Facebook page had over 500,000 followers, and on YouTube it built up a large following as well.

Mainstream corporate media outlets misleadingly portrayed Basma as a “Syrian citizen journalism platform,” or a “civil society group working for a ‘liberatory, progressive transition to a new Syria.’” In reality it was a Western government astroturfing operation to cultivate opposition propagandists.

Nine of the 16 stringers used by Al Jazeera in Syria were trained through the US/UK government’s Basma initiative, ARK boasted in a leaked document.

In an earlier report for the UK FCO, filed just three years into its work, ARK claimed to have “trained over 1,400 beneficiaries representing over 210 beneficiary organisations in more than 130 workshops, and disbursed more than 53,000 individual pieces of equipment,” in a vast network that reached “into all of Syria’s 14 governorates,” which included both opposition- and government-held areas.

ARK UK contractor Syria media map

The Western contractor published a map highlighting its network of stringers and media activists and their relationships with the White Helmets as well as newly created police forces across opposition-controlled Syria.

ARK UK contractor Syria opposition media map

In its trainings, ARK developed opposition spokespeople, taught them how to speak with the press, and then helped arrange interviews with mainstream Arabic- and English-language media outlets.

ARK described its strategy “to identify credible, moderate civilian governance spokespeople who will be promoted as go-to interlocutors for regional and international media. They will echo key messages linked to the coordinated local campaigns across all media, with consortium platforms able to cover this messaging as well and encourage other outlets to pick it up.”

In addition to working with the international press and cultivating opposition leaders, ARK helped develop a massive opposition media super-structure.

ARK said it was a “key implementer of a multi-donor effort to develop a network of FM radio stations and community magazines inside Syria since 2012.” The contractor worked with 14 FM stations and 11 magazines inside Syria, including both Arabic- and Kurdish-language radio.

To propagate opposition broadcasts across Syria, ARK designed what it called “Radio in a Box” (RIAB) kits in 2012. The firm took credit for providing equipment to 48 transmission sites.

ARK also circulated up to 30,000 magazines per month. It reported that “ARK-supported magazines were the three most popular in Aleppo City; the most popular magazine in Homs City; and the most popular magazine in Qamishli.”

A Syrian opposition propaganda outlet directly run by ARK, called Moubader, developed a huge following on social media, including more than 200,000 likes on Facebook. ARK printed 15,000 copies per month of a “high-quality hard copy” Moubader magazine and distributed it “across opposition-held areas of Syria.”

The British contractor TGSN, which worked alongside ARK, developed its own outlet called the “Revolutionary Forces of Syria Media Office (RFS),” a leaked document shows. This confirms a 2016 report in The Grayzone by contributor Rania Khalek, who obtained emails showing how the UK government-backed RFS media office offered to pay one journalist a staggering $17,000 per month to produce propaganda for Syrian rebels.

Another leaked record shows that in just one year, in 2018 – which was apparently the final year of ARK’s Syria program – the firm billed the UK government for a staggering 2.3 million British pounds.

This enormous ARK propaganda operation was directed by Firas Budeiri, who had previously served as the Syria director for the UK-based international NGO Save the Children.

40 percent of ARK’s Syria project team were Syrian citizens, and another 25 percent were Turkish. The firm said its Syria team staff had “extensive experience managing programmes and conducting research funded by many different governmental clients in Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, Yemen, Turkey, the Palestinian Territories, Iraq and other conflict-affected states.”

Western contractor ARK cultivates White Helmets “to keep Syria in the news”

The Western contractor ARK was a central force in launching the White Helmets operation.

The leaked documents show ARK ran the Twitter and Facebook pages of Syria Civil Defense, known more commonly as the White Helmets.

ARK took credit for developing “an internationally-focused communications campaign designed to raise global awareness of the (White Helmets) teams and their life saving work.”

ARK also facilitated communications between the White Helmets and The Syria Campaign, a PR firm run out of London and New York that helped popularize the White Helmets in the United States.

It was apparently “following subsequent discussions with ARK and the teams” that The Syria Campaign “selected civil defence to front its campaign to keep Syria in the news,” the firm wrote in a report for the UK Foreign Office.

“With ARK’s guidance, TSC (The Syria Campaign) also attended ARK’s civil defence training sessions to create media content for its #WhiteHelmets campaign which launched in August 2014 and has since gone viral,” the Western contractor added.

In 2014, ARK produced a long-form documentary on the White Helmets, titled “Digging for Life,” which was repeatedly broadcast on Orient TV.

While it was running the White Helmets’ social media accounts, ARK bragged that it was boosting followers and views on the Facebook page for Idlib City Council.

The Syrian city of Idlib was taken over by al-Qaeda affiliate Jabhat al-Nusra, which then went on to publicly execute women who were accused of adultery.

While effectively aiding these al-Qaeda-aligned extremist groups, ARK and the British intelligence cutout TGSN also signed a document with the FCO hilariously pledging to follow “UK guidance on gender sensitivity” and “ensure gender is considered in all capacity building and campaign development.”

Setting the stage for lawfare on Syria

Another leaked document shows the Western government-backed firm ARK revealing that, back in 2011, it worked with another government contractor called Tsamota to help develop the Syrian Commission for Justice and Accountability (SCJA). In 2014, SCJA changed its name to the Commission for International Justice and Accountability (CIJA).

The Grayzone exposed CIJA as a Western government-funded regime-change organization whose investigators collaborated with al-Qaeda and its extremist allies in order to wage lawfare on the Syrian government.

ARK noted that the project initially worked “with seed funding from the UK Conflict Pool to support investigative and forensic training for Syrian war crimes investigators” and has since “grown to become a major component of Syria’s transitional justice architecture.”

Since the US, European Union, and their Middle East allies lost the military phase of their war on Syria, CIJA has taken the lead in trying to prolong the regime-change campaign through lawfare.

InCoStrat creates media network, helps them interview al-Qaeda

In the leaked documents, another UK government contractor called Innovative Communications Strategies (InCoStrat) boasted of building a massive “network of over 1600 journalists and key influencers with an interest in Syria.”

InCoStrat stressed that it was “managing and delivering a multi donor project in support of UK Foreign Policy objectives” in Syria, “specifically providing strategic communication support to the moderate armed opposition.”

Other funders of InCoStrat’s work with the opposition in Syria, the firm disclosed, included the US government, the United Arab Emirates, and anti-Assad Syrian businessmen.

InCoStrat served as a liaison between its government clients and the Syrian National Coalition, the Western-backed parallel government that the opposition tried to create. InCoStrat advised senior leaders of this Syrian shadow regime, and even ran the National Coalition’s own media office from Istanbul, Turkey.

The Western contractor took credit for organizing a 2014 BBC interview with Ahmad Jarba, the then-president of the opposition National Coalition.

The firm added that “journalists have often reached out to us in search of the appropriate people for their programmes.” As an example, InCoStrat said it helped plant its own Syrian opposition activists in BBC Arabic reports. The firm then added, “Once making the initial connections we encouraged the Syrians to maintain the relationships with the journalists in the BBC instead of using ourselves as the conduit.”

Like ARK, InCoStrat worked closely with the press. The firm said it had “extensive experience in engaging Arab and international news media,” adding that it worked directly with “heads of regional news in major satellite TV networks, press bureaus and print media.”

“Key members of InCoStrat have previously worked as Middle East correspondents for some of the world’s largest news agencies including Reuters,” the Western contractor added.

Also like ARK, InCoStrat established a vast media infrastructure. The firm set up Syrian opposition media offices in Dera’a, Syria; Istanbul and Reyhanli, Turkey; and Amman, Jordan.

InCoStrat worked with 130 stringers across Syria, and said it had more than 120 reporters working inside the country, along with “an additional five official spokesmen who appear several times a week on international and regional TV.”

InCoStrat also established eight FM radio stations and six community magazines across Syria.

The firm reported that it penetrated the armed opposition by developing “strong relationships with 54 brigade commanders in Syria’s southern front,” that involved “daily, direct engagement with the commanders and their officers inside Syria,” as well as defected officers Free Syrian Army (FSA) units in government-held Damascus.

In the leaked documents, InCoStrat boasted that its reporters organized interviews with many armed opposition militias, including the al-Qaeda affiliate Jabhat al-Nusra.

Don’t just plants media stories; “initiate an event” to create your own scandals

In its media war on Damascus, InCoStrat pursued a two-pronged campaign that consisted of the following: “a) Guerrilla Campaign. Use the media to create the event. b) Guerrilla Tactics. Initiate an event to create the media effect.”

The intelligence cutout therefore sought to use the media as a weapon to advance tangible political demands of the Syrian opposition.

In one case, InCoStrat took credit for a successful international campaign to force the Syrian government to lift its siege of the extremist-held opposition stronghold of Homs. The Grayzone contributor Rania Khalek reported on the crisis in Homs, which was besieged by Damascus after the far-right Sunni fundamentalists that controlled it began carrying out sectarian massacres against religious minorities and kidnapping Alawite civilians.

“We connected international journalists with Syrians living in besieged Homs,” InCoStrat explained. It organized an interview between Britain’s Channel 4 and a doctor in the city, which helped raise international attention, ultimately leading to an end to the siege.

In another instance, the UK contractor said it “produced postcards, posters and reports” comparing the secular government of Bashar al-Assad to the fundamentalist Salafi-jihadists in ISIS. Then it “provided a credible, Arabic-English speaking Syrian spokesperson to engage the media.”

The campaign was very successful, according to InCoStrat: Al-Jazeera America and The National published the firm’s propaganda posters. The British contractor also organized interviews on the topic with The New York Times, The Washington Post, CNN, The Guardian, The Times, Buzzfeed, Al-Jazeera, Suriya Al-Sham, and Orient.

InCoStrat Syrian opposition media Assad ISIS

After regime change comes Nation Building Inc.

InCoStrat has apparently been involved in numerous Western-backed regime-change operations.

In one leaked document, the firm said it helped to train civil society organizations in marketing, media, and communications in Afghanistan, Honduras, Iraq, Syria, and Libya. It even trained a team of anti-Saddam Hussein journalists inside Basra, Iraq after the joint US-UK invasion.

In addition to contracting for the United Kingdom, InCoStrat disclosed that it has worked for the governments of the United States, Singapore, Latvia, Sweden, Denmark, and Libya.

After NATO destroyed the Libyan state in a regime-change war in 2011, InCoStrat was brought in in 2012 to conduct similar communications work for the Libyan National Transitional Council, the Western-backed opposition that sought to take power.

Coordinating with extremist militias, cooking news to “reinforce the core narrative”

The leaked documents shed further light on a UK government contractor called Albany.

Albany boasted that it “secured the participation of an extensive local network of over 55 stringers, reporters and videographers” to influence media narratives and advance UK foreign policy interests.

The firm helped create an influential Syrian opposition media outfit called Enab Baladi. Founded in 2011 in the anti-Assad hub of Daraya, at the beginning of the war, Enab Baladi was aggressively marketed in the Western press as a grassroots Syrian media operation.

In reality, Enab Baladi was the product of a British contractor that took responsibility for its evolution “from an amateur-run entity into one of the most prominent Syrian media organizations.”

Albany also coordinated communications between opposition media outlets and extremist Islamist opposition groups by hiring an “engagement leader (who) has deep credibility with key groups including (north) Failaq ash-Sham, Jabha Shammiyeh, Jaysh Idleb al Hur, Ahrar ash-Sham, (center) Jaysh al Islam, Failaq al Rahman, and (south) Jaysh Tahrir.” Many of these militias were linked to al-Qaeda and are now recognized by the US Department of State and European governments as official terrorist groups.

Unlike other Western government contractors active in Syria, which often tried to feign a semblance of balance, Albany made it clear that its media reporting was nothing more than propaganda.

The firm admitted that it trained Syrian media activists in a unique “newsroom process” that called to “curate” news by “collecting and organising stories and content that support and reinforce the core narrative.”

In 2014, Albany boasted of running the Syrian National Coalition’s communications team at the Geneva Peace talks.

Albany also warned that revelations of Western government funding for these opposition media organizations that were being portrayed as grassroots initiatives would discredit them.

When internal emails were leaked showing that the massive opposition media platform Basma Syria was funded by the United States and Britain, Albany wrote, “the Basma brand has been compromised following leaks about funding project aims.”

The leaks on social media “have damaged the credibility and trustworthiness of the existing branded platform,” Albany wrote. “Credibility and trust are the key currencies of the activities envisaged and for this reason we consider it essential to refresh the approach if the content to be disseminated is to have effect.” The Basma website was taken down soon after.

These files provide clear insight into how the Syrian opposition was cultivated by Western governments with imperial designs on Damascus, and was kept afloat with staggering sums of cash that flowed from the pockets of British taxpayers – often to the benefit of fanatical militiamen allied with Al Qaeda.

While Dutch prosecutors prepare war crimes charges against the Syrian government for fighting off the onslaught, the leaked files are a reminder of the leading role that Western states and their war-profiteering companies played in the carefully organized destruction of the country.

thegrayzone.comThe views of individual contributors do not necessarily represent those of the Strategic Culture Foundation.

The Collaborator’s Reward: the UAE, from Syria to Israel

By Tim Anderson

Source

Mohamad Bin Zayed Bashar Assad 9062b

What do Panama’s Manuel Noriega, Iraq’s Saddam Hussein and the UAE’s Mohamad Bin Zayed (MBZ) all have in common? They dreamed that their collaboration with the imperial power would allow them the freedom to pursue their own ambitions.

Very wrong. Once Noriega was employed by the CIA to betray compatriot nationalists and to be used as a tool against independent Cuba and Nicaragua, imperialism owned him. Once Saddam was armed (including with poison gas) by NATO countries to attack Revolutionary Iran and slaughter dissident Iraqis, imperialism owned him. And once MBZ collaborated with Mossad against the Palestinian resistance and armed terrorist groups against Syria, imperialism owned him.

After Noriega sought to play a more independent role in Central America the US, under Bush the First, invaded Panama killing thousands (see ‘The Panama Deception’), just to kidnap Noriega and jail him on drug trafficking charges. Saddam was not allowed to pursue his own interests in Kuwait. Instead his ambitions were used as a pretext to starve and then destroy Iraq. Saddam himself was eventually lynched, under US military occupation. MBZ, for his supposed crime of resuming relations with Syria in 2018, was forced to recognise Israel, thus becoming the new disgrace of the Arab and Muslim world. Once a collaborator is owned he is owned.

The UAE gained nothing by openly recognising the zionist regime. There was no political or economic benefit. The UAE was already collaborating deeply with Israel, as evidenced by the open access enjoyed by the Mossad team which murdered Palestinian militant Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in Dubai in February 2010 (Lewis, Borger and McCarthy 2010), and later kidnapped Australian-Israeli whistle-blower Ben Zygier, after he had provided Dubai authorities with “names and pictures and accurate details” of the team, supposedly in exchange for UAE protection. However Israel kidnapped Zygier in the UAE and he later died from ‘suicide’ in an Israeli jail (Rudoran 2013).

There was no independent motive behind the disgraceful UAE move, other than fear and obedience. The Trump regime pressured and threatened MBZ into recognising Israel, just to help with its 2020 election campaign.

How do we know this? Two months before the UAE officially recognised Israel, Trump envoy James Jeffrey threatened the UAE regime for its renewed relations with Syria, which went against Trump’s subsequent ‘Caesar Act’ (MEMO 2020), a piece of legislation primarily aimed at imposing discipline on third party ‘allies’ which sought to normalise relations with Damascus.

Washington’s ‘Caesar’ law (part of an omnibus NDAA Act) pretends to authorise the US President to impose fines and confiscate the assets of those, anywhere in the world, who “support or engage in a significant transaction” with the Syrian government (SJAC 2020). It aimed at Persian Gulf allies, principally the UAE, and perhaps some Europeans who were considering renewed relations with Damascus (Anderson 2020)

As it happened, in late December 2018, the UAE resumed relations with the Syrian Government and resumed investment in the besieged country. This was despite the anti-Syrian role of the UAE in the early days of the conflict and, in particular, their backing of ISIS terrorism. That role was acknowledged by senior US officials in late 2014.

Head of the US Army General Martin Dempsey in September 2014 admitted that “major Arab allies” of the US funded ISIS (Rothman 2014). The following month US Vice President Joe Biden specified that US allies “Turkey, Qatar and the UAE had extended “billions of dollars and tens of thousands of tons of weapons” to all manner of fanatical Islamist fighters, including ISIS, in efforts to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al Assad (Maskanian 2014). Biden later offered a hollow apology to the UAE for his remarks (Al Jazeera 2014). A sanitised Atlantic Council version of this history was that the UAE had backed “armed opposition groups – such as the Free Syrian Army” (Santucci 2020).

In any case, with Washington’s regime change war lost – certainly after the expanded role of Russia in Syria from September 2015 onwards – the UAE began to change tack. In November 2015 UAE Foreign Affairs Minister Anwar Gargash expressed cautious support for Russia’s role and in April 2018 he characterised the conflict as one between the Syrian Government and Islamic extremism. On 27 December the UAE reopened its embassy in Damascus (Ramani 2020). Bahrain followed suit the next day. The MBZ regime claims to have provided over $530 million “to alleviate the suffering” of Syria since 2012 (Santucci 2020), though how much of this went into armed Islamist groups is unclear.

But there certainly have been some UAE-funded construction projects in Syria in recent times. No doubt wealthy UAE investors saw some opportunities in post-war reconstruction. The Emirates hosted a Syrian trade delegation in January 2019 and in August 2019 some private Emirati companies participated in the Damascus International Trade Fair (Cafiero 2020).

But in early 2020 the Trump regime passed its Caesar law, aimed at reining in its wandering ‘allies’. In June envoy James Jeffrey pointed his finger at the UAE, saying: “the UAE knows that we absolutely refuse that countries take such steps [in Syria] … we have clearly stressed that we consider this a bad idea … anyone who engages in economic activities … may be targeted by these sanctions” (MEMO 2020).

That could mean big trouble for the UAE. The Obama regime (through the US Treasury’s ‘Office of Foreign Assets Control’) had already ‘fined’ European banks more than 12 billion dollars for their business with Iran and Cuba, in breach of Washington’s unilateral coercive measures (Anderson 2019: 42).

Two months later in August the UAE’s open recognition of Israel presented the semblance of some sort of change in the region. An Atlantic Council paper hoped that might be to derail the UAE’s ‘normalization policy with Syria’ (Santucci 2020). That indeed was one part of the project: tighten the siege on the independent region: from Palestine through Lebanon, Syria and Iraq to Iran. In the process 80% of the besieged Syrian population was living in poverty, and on the brink of starvation (Cafiero 2020). This was a determined if failing strategy, set in place by Bush the Second and carried through faithfully by Obama and Trump, despite the latter’s pragmatic misgivings.

The other part of the project was to strong-arm the little petro-monarchy into boosting the Trump election campaign. The UAE’s recognition of Israel did nothing to help MBZ, but was well received in Tel Aviv (though it did not change the constellation of Resistance forces) and was skilfully presented in the USA as some sort of concession to Palestine. Yet Trump’s flimsy pretext (a ‘freeze’ on further annexations) was quickly discredited. Israeli Finance Minister Yisrael Katz said that a ‘freeze’ was in place before the UAE deal (Khalil 2020). Netanyahu maintained that further annexations were still ‘on the table’ (Al Jazeera 2020). Indeed he had announced such ‘freezes’ before (Ravid 2009).

In any case, Trump was clearly no advocate for Palestinian or Arab rights. He had broken with previous US regimes by giving his blessing to Tel Aviv’s annexation of both East Jerusalem and the Syrian Golan, disregarding international law (BBC 2019). Disgraced in the region, the UAE was simply acting as Washington’s puppet. That is the collaborator’s reward.

———

References

Al Jazeera (2014) ‘Biden ‘apologises’ to UAE for ISIL remarks’, 6 October, online: https://www.aljazeera.com/news/middleeast/2014/10/uae-says-amazed-joe-biden-syria-remarks-20141058153239733.html

Al Jazeera (2020) ‘Netanyahu says West Bank annexation plans still ‘on the table’’, 13 August, online: https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/08/netanyahu-west-bank-annexation-plans-table-200813183431066.html

Anderson, Tim (2019) Axis of Resistance: towards an independent Middle East, Clarity Press, Atlanta GA

Anderson, Tim (2020) ‘Trump’s ‘Caesar’ Style Siege on Syria, A Sign of Impending Regional Failure’, American Herald Tribune, 12 June, online: https://ahtribune.com/world/north-africa-south-west-asia/syria-crisis/4218-trump-caesar-style-siege.html

BBC (2019) ‘Golan Heights: Trump signs order recognising occupied area as Israeli’, 25 March, online: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-47697717

Cafiero, Giorgio (2020) ‘The Caesar Act and the United Arab Emirates’, TRT World, 29 June, online: https://www.trtworld.com/opinion/the-caesar-act-and-the-united-arab-emirates-37702

Khalil, Zein (2020) ‘Annexation frozen before UAE deal: Israeli minister’, 16 August, online: https://www.aa.com.tr/en/middle-east/annexation-frozen-before-uae-deal-israeli-minister/1943528

Lewis, Paul; Julian Borger and Rory McCarthy (2010) ‘Dubai murder: fake identities, disguised faces and a clinical assassination’, The Guardian, 16 February, online: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2010/feb/16/dubai-murder-fake-identities-hamas

Maskanian, Bahram (2014) ‘Vice President Joe Biden stated that US key allies in the Middle East were behind nurturing ISIS’, YouTube, 2 December, online: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=25aDP7io30U

MEMO (2020) ‘US threatens UAE with Caesar Act, due to support for Assad regime’, 19 June, online: https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20200619-us-threatens-uae-with-caesar-act-due-to-support-for-assad-regime/

Ramani, Samuel (2020) ‘Foreign policy and commercial interests drive closer UAE-Syria ties’, Middle East Institute, 21 January online: https://www.mei.edu/publications/foreign-policy-and-commercial-interests-drive-closer-uae-syria-ties

Ravid, Barak (2009) ‘Netanyahu Declares 10-month Settlement Freeze ‘To Restart Peace Talks’’, Haaretz, 25 November, online: https://www.haaretz.com/1.5122924

Rothman, Noah (2014) ‘Dempsey: I know of Arab allies who fund ISIS’, YouTube, 16 September, online: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nA39iVSo7XE

Rudoran, Jodi (2013) ‘Israel’s Prisoner X Is Linked to Dubai Assassination in a New Report’, New York Times, 14 February, online: https://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/15/world/middleeast/israels-prisoner-x-linked-to-dubai-assassination-in-new-report.html

Santucci, Emily (2020) ‘The Caesar Act might alter the UAE’s normalization policy with Syria’ Atlantic Council, online: https://www.atlanticcouncil.org/blogs/menasource/the-caesar-act-might-alter-the-uaes-normalization-policy-with-syria/

SJAC (2020) ‘The Caesar Act: Impacts and Implementation’, Syria Justice and Accountability Centre’, 20 February, online: https://syriaaccountability.org/updates/2020/02/20/the-caesar-act-impacts-and-implementation/

Wolf, Albert B. (2020) ‘The UAE-Israel Agreement Isn’t All It’s Cracked Up to Be’, Foreign Policy, 15 August, online: https://foreignpolicy.com/2020/08/15/the-uae-israel-agreement-isnt-all-its-cracked-up-to-be/

معارك تحرير الشرق… من تل مندو إلى عرسال [1/2]: فجر المقاومة بين عصرَين

الاخبار

فراس الشوفي الخميس 27 آب 2020

معارك تحرير الشرق... من تل مندو إلى عرسال    [1/2]: فجر المقاومة بين عصرَين
الهجوم على قارة شهدَ أوّل دمج للتشكيلات بين المقاومة والجيش السوري (هيثم الموسوي)

ثلاثة أعوامٍ مرّت على طيّ صفحة تهديد لبنان من الشرق، والبلد مثخنٌ بالجراح من تهديدات الداخل والخارج. هي سنوات صعبة منذ 2011، قدّم فيها ثلّة من اللبنانيين دماءهم ووقتهم وأحلامهم في مواجهة أعتى المقاتلين التكفيريين مدعومين من الولايات المتّحدة الأميركية وأتباعها الغربيين والإقليميين الذين سرعان ما اقتتلوا فيما بينهم، فتعددّت المشاريع والحروب والمصالح والأجندات. لكن، بقيت وجهة المقاومة الوحيدة هي حماية لبنان من شرقه وضرب المشروع التكفيري في مهده، من حمص إلى حلب ودير الزور. ولئن كان لبنان منقسماً كما دائماً، ولا يتّفق أهله لا على عدوٍ ولا على صديق، لم ينتظر المدافعون إجماعاً، بل كانوا حيث يجب أن يكونوا، في اللحظة الحاسمة، حاملين معهم روح الإبداع والإيمان. وبدل أن تكون الظروف تهديداً فحسب، تحوّل التهديد إلى فرصة، ونهلت المقاومة من معرفة الاختبار والميدان، فتغمّست الخبرة بالدّم وأنتجت قوّةً حوّلت المقاومة إلى جيش متكامل من القوّات الخاصّة المدرّبة التي يعصى على أقوى المجتمعات والدول تشكيلها. في مناسبة الذكرى الثالثة لتحرير كامل الجرود الشرقية، أجرت «الأخبار» مقابلة مع ضابط رفيع المستوى في المقاومة، أبو حسن، سرد فيها الأخير سلسلة المعارك التي خاضها حزب الله خلال أربع سنوات، من 2013 إلى 2017، مع تركيز كبير على الجانب العسكري من الأحداث. وتحفل المقابلة بتفاصيل عسكرية مثيرة، تعكس مدى التطوّر الذي وصلت إليه المقاومة على الصعيد البشريّ واللوجستيّ والتقنيّ والتسليحيّ. إلّا أنّ هذه المكتنزات، تصبّ في خلاصة واحدة: تحوّل المقاومة إلى مصدر تهديد عسكري استراتيجي لجيش العدوّ الإسرائيلي، يفوق بأضعاف ذلك التهديد الذي أسقط مقولة «الجيش الذي لا يُقهر» في هزيمتَين عسكريتَين عام 2000 و2006. ويستخلص أبو حسن من روايته الخاصة للمعارك، أن «تشكيلات حزب الله هي تشكيلات دفاعية بالأصل وتنفّذ عمليات خاصة ذات طابع هجومي، لكنّ تجربة سوريا أعطتنا حافزاً لتنفيذ العمل الهجومي بتشكيلات كبيرة وواسعة وأساليب جديدة ودمج أسلحة مع بعضها». فحزب الله، يتألف من مستويات عدّة في التشكيلات (النخب/ النظامي/ التعبئة). «كنّا نهاجم بقوات التعبئة مثلاً»، يقول أبو حسن، «استفدنا من الفرصة، وحوّلنا هذه التشكيلات من شبه عسكريّة إلى هجوميّة، وهذه النخب تتطلّب لدى الجيوش جهوداً كبيرة لإنتاجها. بينما نحن، الطبقة الأدنى لدينا من المقاتلين، هي تشكيلات هجومية قتالية أثبتت فعاليّة في الميدان ضدّ أشرس مقاتلين يمتلكون إرادة الحرب، وبظروف مناخية صعبة من 50 درجة فوق الصفر إلى 20 درجة تحت الصفر، مستفيدين من أسلحة ووسائل لم تكن موجودة بين يدينا في السابق». في المقابل، يبدو جيش العدو الإسرائيلي، وإن كان مدرّعاً بأحدث الأسلحة، حفنة من الجنود، لم يخوضوا اشتباكاً حقيقياً منذ 14 عاماً على الأقل، وجنرالاتهم اليوم هم أبناء هزيمة حرب تموز 2006 ولجنة «فينوغراد» الشهيرة. تحرير السلسلة الشرقية، إعلان فجرٍ جديد للمقاومة، بين عصرين من الحرب: عصر قتال إسرائيل في لبنان وعصر قتال إسرائيل في فلسطين المحتلة.

بعينين مُتَّقدَتَيْن، وصوتٍ عميق، يفرد القائد العسكري الرفيع المستوى في حزب الله، أبو حسن (اسم مستعار)، أمام «الأخبار»، استعادة لبعض جوانب وأسرار المعارك التي خاضتها المقاومة إلى جانب الجيش السوري ولوحدها، ضدّ الجماعات الإرهابية، منذ بدء القتال في حوض نهر العاصي وتل مندو في 2013، وحتى تحرير آخر شبرٍ من سلسلة جبال القلمون والسلسلة الشرقية اللبنانية في آب 2017، بعد مرور ثلاث سنوات على هذا الحدث التأسيسي.
سنوات مريرة ومضنية بالدم والدموع، ودّع فيها الضابط المقاوِم قافلة من الشهداء، من إخوته وزملائه وأساتذته وتلاميذه، كان يُفرِج خلال المقابلة عن أسمائهم شهيداً تلو الآخر، مع كلّ غيمة من حريق سجائره، ومع كلّ مفصلٍ في معركة، تطلّب النصر فيها تقريب الأجساد الفانية.
لكن، كان للجلجلة مقصد، وهو الدفاع عن سوريا ولبنان بكل القوّة والإرادة، بتكتيكات عسكريّة فرضتها ظروف المعارك وغذّتها العقول المشتعلة إبداعاً، والقلوب الفيّاضة بالشجاعة والإيمان. حتى تحوّلت التجربة إلى مستوى جديد ومتقدّم من العلوم العسكرية الهجينة، أكسَبت المقاومة معرفةً ونضجاً، يؤهّلها لخوض أعتى الحروب، كقوّة «خاصة» بأكلمها، ذات تدريب وتسليحٍ عالٍ، يهابها أعداؤها، ويأنس حلفاؤها إلى قدراتها وتفوّقها.

تل مندو البداية
من حمص، يبدأ القائد العسكري روايته، وهو يُؤَشر بيده نحو شاشة على الحائط تعكس خارطة عسكرية. «من اختار حمص لتنطلق الحرب منها ذكيّ جداً»، يدلّ أبو حسن: «هي أكبر المحافظات، وامتداد من شرق سوريا إلى غربها، أي الوسط والقلب، مع قيمة استراتيجية تصل الشمال بدمشق، ومنها مع ريف دمشق يمكن حصار العاصمة وعزلها عن لبنان والساحل السوري. وفي بُعدها الخارجي تلاصق لبنان والأردن والعراق، ومن خلالها يصل الإرهابيّون إلى البحر لاتصالها بالحدود اللبنانية. وفوق ديموغرافيتها الواسعة والمتنوّعة، تضم حمص أبرز المطارات العسكرية الشعيرات/ T4 (التّياس)/ تدمر/ الضبعة، ومخازن السلاح الأساسيّة والاستراتيجيّة للجيش السوري».
أمّا القصير، فهي عقدة العقد لـ«ملاصقتها الحدود اللبنانية ووادي خالد وأكروم، تحوّلت في 2013 إلى قاعدة رئيسية لاستقبال المقاتلين الأجانب، وطبعاً نذكر زيارة أحمد الأسير إليها، لأنّ المطلوب كان تظهير هذا الجانب. كانت القصير مركزاً كبيراً للتدريب وتجميع وتوزيع المقاتلين والسلاح، أي خلفية لوجستية لكلّ العمل العسكري للمعارضة، والأهمّ أنها أُعِدّت لتكون القاعدة الأساسية لمذهبة الحرب في سوريا، وكانت تتزوّد من معابر التهريب المفتوحة من الحدود اللبنانية».
لماذا شعرت المقاومة بالخطر واتّخذت قرار التحرّك؟ يقول الضابط إن «المجموعات المسلّحة التي بدأت بالتشكّل في منطقة حوض العاصي أظهرت تطوّراً لافتاً، ومارست في 2011 و2012 اعتداءات عديدة ضد سكّان الحوض، وبعض هذه القرى تقطنُها غالبية لبنانية أيضاً. ونحن أحدثنا وجوداً دفاعياً صغيراً في قرى مثل الحمّام وصفصافة والحوش لمساعدة أهلها». لكن كانت «السيطرة على تل مندو في آذار 2013 نقطة التحوّل وخطوة مهمة في تطوّر المشروع المعادي. إذ يرتفع التل ذو الحيثية التاريخية حوالى 70 متراً عن محيطه السهلي الشاسع، مع طولٍ مقدّرٍ بـ 450 وعرض حوالى 250 متراً، ما يمنحه إشرافاً على كامل المنطقة المحيطة بـ360 درجة. ويؤمّن مع القصير إشرافاً على الخطوط المفتوحة من البادية إلى الساحل، وعلى مساحات واسعة من حدود لبنان، ويسمّى عسكرياً عارضاً حساساً مفتاحياً للمنطقة». سقوط تل مندو «أضاء مؤشّر الخطر لدى قيادة المقاومة، فتم اتّخاذ القرار بالانتقال من الدفاع إلى الهجوم، وكانت قوّات العدو مؤلّفة حينها من فصائل ما سُمي بالجيش السوري الحرّ وكتائب الفاروق مع امتداداتها إلى حماه وحلب والجنوب، وكان على رأس قيادة المدينة المدعوّ موفق الجربان، الملقّب بأبو السوس (انتقل إلى تنظيم داعش لاحقاً)».
عملية تحرير تل مندو، هي «عمل هجومي ذو طبيعة خاصّة قاتلت فيه تشكيلات المشاة، مع تشكيلات قليلة من الدعم الناري، وكان القتال أفراداً مقابل أفراد». الصعوبة في هذه العملية، أن التلّ يتوسّط مسطّحَين من الماء متفرّعَين عن نهر العاصي، ويقدّر أقلّ عرض بـ 24 متراً، ما يشكّل مانعاً لتحرّك أيّ قوة عسكرية باتّجاهه». ومنذ اللحظة التي اتّخدت فيها المقاومة قرار استعادته، «قمنا بمحاولتين، في الأولى غرق شاب واستشهد، أما في الثانية فلم يسقط أي شهيد. العقبة التي واجهناها أن المسلحين فجّروا الجسر الرابط بين التل والبرّ، واستعملنا جسوراً متحرّكة للجيش السوري لكن لم تكن كافية. وهنا دخل الإبداع عبر تصنيع جسور عائمة لتحمل المقاتلين واستخدام آليات صغيرة لنقل الذخائر والأعتدة».
ويتابع أبو حسن أنه «بعد التسلّل والسيطرة على التلّ، استفاد المسلّحون من إمكانيّاتنا المحدودة كتشكيلات صغيرة ومن قرار متخّذ في قيادة المقاومة بالسيطرة على التلّ فقط وعدم التوسّع حوله، فزجّ بحوالى 400 مسلح بهجوم مضاد. لكن هذا الهجوم كانت كلفته عالية عليهم: قُتِل 50 مسلّحاً حاولوا التقدّم بثمانية أنساق هجومية بقيادة أبو أحمد عماد جمعة الذي ألقى الجيش اللبناني القبض عليه لاحقاً وإثر ذلك حصلت معركة عرسال. صحيح أنه سقط لنا 8 شهداء في معركة الدفاع عن التلّ، لكنّ الثمن الذي دفعه المسلّحون كان مرتفعاً مع خسارتهم أبرز قادة العمل الهجومي بالالتحام والقتال المباشر مع مقاتلي المقاومة».
ومع استعادة تل مندو، ردّ المسلّحون بالسيطرة على مطار الضبعة، «ما يعني سيطرتهم على غالبية منطقة شمال وغرب النهر، ومن بحيرة قطينة إلى حمص. وهنا اتُّخذ قرار بعمليّة هجومية للدفاع عن التلّ من خارجه، بتشكيل يوازي 3 سرايا قتال على 3 محاور. وصار الهجوم يتوسّع شيئاً فشيئاً حتى اتُّخذ قرار تحرير كامل منطقة غرب النهر، والاستعداد للانتقال إلى شرقه، وهكذا كان».

من شرق العاصي إلى القصير
الغاية الرئيسية لعمليّة شرق النهر بحسب أبو حسن، كانت «حماية بلدة ربلة، وإيجاد موطئ قدم باتجاه منطقة القصير، عبر تحرير وتحصين قرى جوسيه والزرّاعة والعاطفية والعبودية. والغاية الثانية هي قطع خطوط الإمداد من المعابر التي تصل القصير بعرسال، والتي تمرّ حكماً من منطقة جوسيه وقراها، وبهذه العملية تمتّ السيطرة على 22 قرية بمساحة حوالى 130 كلم مربّعاً، سقطت جميعها بـ48 ساعة من الهجوم».
ويعلّق الضابط على هذه المعركة، شارحاً خلفيتها العسكرية، والتجربة الجديدة التي خاضتها المقاومة، «استفدنا بأقصى شكلٍ مُمكنٍ من مجموعة الأسلحة الجديدة، وعملنا على عدةّ محاور وبعدة أساليب ومناورات، وهذا ما يحتاج إلى الكثير من الضبط والسيطرة والتنسيق. يعني تعدّد أنواع المناورات: مناورة جبهوية/ مناورات اختراقية/ مناورات التفافية/ مناورات إحاطة، كان لدينا قتال بالمشاة، وكذلك بدأنا الاستفادة من وجود المدرّعات. بدأت المعركة مع صلاة الظهر وانتهت عند صلاة المغرب، في أحد أيام نيسان 2013».

تحرير القصير بداية سقوط المشروع
خلال الحديث عن تحرير القصير، يكشف أبو حسن أنّ «قيادة المقاومة كان لديها فكرة عن القيمة الاستراتيجية للقصير، لكن خلال المعارك اكتشف الإخوان حجم هذه القيمة التي تدفع باراك أوباما (الرئيس الأميركي السابق للاتصال بميشال سليمان (الرئيس اللبناني السابق)! وتستنفر كل الشخصيات الأخرى من رجب أردوغان وحمد بن جاسم والقرضاوي إلى وليد جنبلاط».
يجزم القائد أن عملية الهجوم على القصير لم تبدأ قبل أن تأكّد قادة العمليات من خروج المدنيين منها. في بداية المعركة، كان «هناك محظور يمنعنا من الاستفادة من سلاح الطيران، فالسؤال هو هل يوجد مدنيون، أم لا يوجد؟ وهذا النقاش أخذ وقتاً وتأجّلت العملية يومين، وقام الطيران السوري برمي المناشير التي تطلب مغادرة المدنيين، ولم يتم العمل الهجومي إلّا بعد أن أبلغَنا السوريون بأن الناس خرجوا عبر المعابر».
عسكرياً، تبلغ مساحة القصير حوالى 15 كلم مربعاً، وكان في داخلها بضعة مواقع للجيش السوري معزولة أو محاصرة وتتعرّض لهجمات انتحارية يومية، من قِِبل «كتائب الفاروق» وتشكيلات جديدة من «جبهة النصرة» وما سميّ بـ«مغاوير بابا عمرو»، الخارجين من الحي الحمصي بعد استعادة الجيش السوري السيطرة عليه.
يقول القائد الميداني إنه «قاتلنا آلاف المسلّحين في القصير، وعبد الجبار العقيدي (قائد الجيش الحر) قال بعد هزيمتهم إنهم سحبوا 10 آلاف مقاتل، نحن نعتقد أننا قاتلنا 6 آلاف مقاتل في معركة طاحنة. استفدنا أوّلاً من وجود نقاط للجيش فأدخلْنا التشكيلات إليها بصورة سريّة، وعند بدء الهجوم فُتحت محاور اختراقية منها في وسط المدينة، وهاجمنا نحن من 8 محاور بهجوم رئيسي من الجنوب باتجاه الشمال، مستخدمين المناورات الالتفافية، والإ¥حاطة لتأمين المحيط. ومع بدء المعركة سيطرنا في اليوم الأول على 45% من المدينة مع كلفة بشريّة عالية علينا. هذه كانت المرّة الأولى التي تستخدم فيها المقاومة هذا النوع من القتال في المدن».
ويختصر القائد العسكري مراحل العمل في المدينة بأربع: مرحلة الهجوم الواسع (السيطرة على حوالى 45 %)، السيطرة على «خطّ السكّة»، مرحلة القضم حيث كان يتمّ القيام بعمليات قضم لمبانٍ أو بيوت بدل الهجومات الواسعة بـ«عمليات معقّدة جداً لمهاجمة كلّ مبنى على حدة، وخلالها تكون التحضيرات مستمرّة لعمليات هجومية واسعة». أمّا المرحلة الرابعة فهي «العمليّة الهجومية النهائية للسيطرة على هدف واحد وهو القصر البلدي في المدينة، الذي سقط بمجرد سيطرتنا عليه. وهذا الأمر حاولنا فعله في اليوم الأول من الهجوم بعملية اختراق معقّدة أيضاً وكانت واحدة من المناورات الناجحة نسبياً. نجحنا في الوصول إلى قرب المبنى لكن لم نستطع التثبيت، إلى أن أنجزنا ذلك في الهجوم الأخير».
ويلفت أبو حسن الانتباه إلى شراسة المعارك في القصير، «فنحن لم ندخل إلى بيت إلّا وخضنا فيه اشتباكاً، حيث دخلنا إلى ميدان يعجّ بالمقاتلين على امتداد حافة طولها حوالى 4 كلم وبخط متعرّج حوالى 6 كلم. وخلال المعارك أُدخل مسلّحون من أسود الشرقية، والقائد العسكري في المعارضة عبد القادر صالح (حجي مارع) والعقيدي (العقيد المنشقّ عن الجيش السوري) و 300 مسلّح من حلب».
وتلك التعقيدات في القتال، دفعت باتّجاه الإبداعات العسكرية في معركة القصير، «مثلاً أحضرنا شاحنات كبيرة وملأناها بالرّمال وقطعنا بها الطريق، فعرض خط السكة حوالى الـ 60 متراً، ومقاتلو المقاومة مضطرون إلى قطعه مشياً تحت نيران القنص. وفّرنا دماء كثيرة بهذه الطريقة، ونجحت العملية حتى خرج المسلحون ليلة سقوط المدينة تحت أعيننا بحوالى 600 آلية، وطبعاً لم نتعرّض لهم مع أنه كان بالإمكان إبادة القوات المنسحبة. حتى إن مجموعة من حوالى 40 مسلّحاً جريحاً، طلبت من مختار إحدى القرى أن يتمّ إسعافها، وعندما وصل الأمر إلى سماحة السيّد حسن نصر الله أمر بمساعدتهم، وقمنا بنقلهم وتسليمهم إلى الصليب الأحمر الدولي الذي أدخلهم لبنان وعالجهم. طبعاً كانوا يشتمون حزب الله فوق ذلك. لكن على إثر سقوط القصير سقطت كل المنطقة من حوض العاصي إلى مدينة حمص، وغالبيتها من دون قتال».

التهديد من السلسلة الشرقية
مع انتهاء معركة القصير، انتقل التركيز إلى قرى وبلدات سلسلة جبال القلمون، أي يبرود وفليطة وقارة والسحل وعسال الورد والجبة وراس المعرة. بحسب القائد، «تمركز مسلّحو السلسلة الشرقية على معابر الجبال، في سلسلة تمتدّ من جوسيه شمالاً حتى جبل الشيخ جنوباً، يقطعها وادي طريق الشام. وكذلك الأمر تمركزوا في الزبداني واستفادوا من المعابر الطبيعية إلى أقصى حدود».
أمّا على مستوى قيادة المقاومة، فقرار التوغّل في السلسلة الشرقية والسيطرة على بعض المرتفعات الحساسة فيها، اتُّخذ بعد هجوم متقطّع استمر 28 يوماً خلال كانون الأول 2013، ضدّ مواقع المقاومة في جوسيه، و«تم حسم المعركة لصالحنا ليلة رأس السنة 2014، وبدأنا التخطيط والعمل باتّجاه المرتفعات، وعندها سيطرنا على بعض التلال على ارتفاعات بين 1470 و1500 متر، وتمركزنا فيها وأحبطنا الهجوم نهائياً، بظروف مناخية قاسية جداً في ذلك الوقت من العام فوق السلسلة الشرقية». ولم تكن السلسلة وقتها سوى معبر للمسلحين، يُستفاد منه عسكرياً في تهديد مواقع المقاومة والجيش السوري، وأمنياً بزعزعة لبنان عبر السيارات المفخّخة التي بدأت تخرج من يبرود وعرسال عبر إصبع الطفيل، نحو بريتال والداخل اللبناني».

الهجوم على القصير لم يبدأ قبل أن تأكّد قادة العمليات من خروج المدنيين منها


وتطوّر الأمر أيضاً، حين قام المسلحون في كانون الثاني 2014، بالهجوم على مخزن قارة الاستراتيجي، وأثناءها «كنا نجري مناورة قتالة لجميع التشكيلات في القصير، فطُلب منا حماية المخزن، وأدركنا أنه لا بدّ من السيطرة على المرتفعات، وهكذا انفتحنا على العمل باتجاه البادية أيضاً».
ومع تزايد المخاطر العسكرية، كان العدو يتطوّر، فـ«لم نعد نواجه كتائب الفاروق أو الحرّ، بل بتنا نواجه جبهة النصرة بقيادة أبو مالك التلّي، لأن صدمة القصير دفعت بالمشّغلين إلى الاعتماد على تشكيلات تكفيرية أكثر تطوّراً، وهذا أيضاً توسّع نحو الجنوب السوري وفي الشمال باتجاه حماه، حيث شنّ أبو محمد الجولاني هجوماً ضد المطار، وقام الجيش السوري بصدّه واستعادة المناطق القريبة».

دمج تشكيلات بين المقاومة والجيش السوري
في مرحلة تحرير قارة، يهتمّ أبو حسن، بالإشارة إلى أن «كلفة الهجوم كانت شهيداً واحداً من المقاومة بانفجار قذيفة معادية، لكن الأبرز هو أن «هذه العملية الهجومية شهدت دمجاً للتشكيلات بين المقاومة والجيش السوري». كذلك قام المسلّحون بطلب الدعم، فوصلت قوات من المهزومين في القصير، وكان لاستخدامنا أجهزة الاتصال المفتوحة إيجابية كبيرة، حيث تعرّف هؤلاء إلى نداءاتنا فتراجعت الروح المعنوية لديهم، وكثير منهم لم يلتحق في القتال، وهذه تداعيات غير مباشرة لهزيمة القصير، كما أن الجيش السوري تمكّن سريعاً بعدها من استعادة تل كلخ ثم منطقة قلعة الحصن، وكذلك القريتين في البادية».
ومنذ ذلك الحين، تمّ خوض معارك بلدات القلمون، «بتشكيلات هجينة من الجيش السوري والمقاومة في تجربة جديدة، وكانت غاية العمليات اقتلاع جذور الإرهاب وتفكيك معامل الموت والسيارات المفخخة التي استهدفت العمق اللبناني». وفي ذلك الوقت أيضاً، «بدأنا نشهد تهديداً عسكرياً باتّجاه الداخل اللبناني بعد التهديد الأمني، انطلاقاً من السلسلة». وتوّج هذا التهديد بالهجوم على مراكز الجيش في عرسال، في آب 2014، و«نحن نعتقد أنه لولا تنفيذ هذه العمليات الخاطفة لكان المسلّحون توسّعوا في تهديد بعلبك وزحلة والمصنع، وتالياً يتهدّد لبنان بأكمله، لأن هذا كان جزءاً من مشروعهم أصلاً».

قائد عسكري في المقاومة: هزمنا ستة آلاف مسلّح مدرّب في القصير خلال أقل من شهر


في خلاصة الجزء الأوّل من الرواية، يرسم أبو حسن إطاراً لتطوّر العمل العسكري وأساليبه لدى المقاومة، «في تل مندو قاتلنا في طبيعة مع موانع مائية ضخمة ومنطقة سهلية مكشوفة، وتعلّمنا وطورنا قدراتنا ومهاراتنا، وفي معركة شرق النهر وغربه، قاتلنا في بيئة من الأشجار المثمرة الكثيفة والأحراش، وفي مدينة القصير قاتلنا في بيئة عمرانية متراصّة، ثم انتقلنا ظغلى القتال الجبلي المعقّد تحت ظروف مناخية وجغرافية صعبة. وفي كل هذه المراحل هجّنت المقاومة عملها وطوّرته، مستفيدة من المزج بين قتال العصابات ووسائل وأدوات الجيوش النظامية».


البحر هو الحلم الدائم
على مراحل زمنيّة متعدّدة، لم يغِب حلم الوصول من البحر إلى الداخل السوري عبر شمال لبنان، عن تفكير العصابات المسلّحة، باختلاف أشكالها، من «الجيش الحر» و«الفاروق» إلى «النصرة» و«داعش». وهذا الحلم، هو واحد من أبرز أسباب سعي المسلحين إلى الوصول إلى العمق اللبناني. «المسلحون وعدونا بقتالنا في الضاحية، لكن الطموح الاستراتيجي هو الوصول إلى الضنية من البقاع، ثمّ إلى طرابلس»، يقول القائد العسكري في المقاومة. ويؤكّد أن «لدينا وثائق وهي موجودة عند القوى الأمنية، أن مشروع داعش هو فصل قضاء الهرمل والوصول إلى الضنية ليكون له وصول إلى البحر». وهذه المعلومات أكدها قائد الجيش السابق العماد جان قهوجي، في غير مناسبة، إضافة إلى وزير الخارجية البريطاني الأسبق، ديفيد كاميرون، الذي صرّح بذلك علناً في آب 2014.


محاولة تفجير «الكلور» في العاطفية

(هيثم الموسوي)


أثناء حديثه عن معركة شرق النهر، يستذكر القائد العسكري في المقاومة، حادثةً مهمّة، وهي أن أول عمليّة قام بها حزب الله بتشكيلات صافية في سوريا، كانت استعادة الموقع 14 التابع للجيش السوري قرب معبر جوسيه، وسقط شهيد للمقاومة.
وكان أول احتكاك لقوّات المقاومة مع القصير في بلدة العاطفية، حيث اتُّخذ قرار استعادة منشأة المياه. ودافعت العصابات المسلّحة عن المنشأة لأكثر من 24 ساعة، قبل أن تسقط ظهر اليوم التالي على بدء الهجوم. لكن الحادث الأبرز في هذه العمليّة، هو قتل رجال المقاومة لأحد المسلّحين المكلّفين تنفيذ عمليّة انتحارية داخل المنشأة، بهدف تفجير مستوعبات تضمّ آلاف الليترات من مادة الكلور، لكنّه قُتل قبل القيام بتنفيذ مهمّته.

SYRIAN FORCES ARE HUNTING DOWN ISIS TERRORISTS IN DESERT

South Front

South Front

The military situation in Syria continued deteriorating in the recent days.

On August 21, the Syrian Army and its allies increased their anti-ISIS raids in the Palmyra-Deir Ezzor-Al-Mayadin triangle. According to pro-government sources, these efforts are being actively supported by recently deployed reinforcements from the Iranian-backed Liwa Fatemiyoun armed group.

On August 20, ISIS claimed responsibility for the recent attack on Russian troops in the province of Deir Ezzor.  The attack, which took place on August 18, killed Maj. Gen. Vyacheslav Gladkih and injured two other Russian service members. In a statement released by its news agency, Amaq, ISIS claimed that a number of improvised explosive devices (IEDs), which had been planted by its terrorists east of the town of al-Sukhnah in eastern Homs, struck a Russian patrol that was combing the region.

Earlier, the Russian military said that the incident took place near the al-Taim oil field, which is indeed located to the east of al-Sukhnah, in the western Deir Ezzor countryside. These details play into the hand of the ISIS propaganda. According to Syrian government sources, a few hundreds of ISIS members take shelter in the Homs-Deir Ezzor countryside. These terrorists pose a notable security threat to pro-government forces, but they claim that the full elimination of the ISIS cells in the desert is not possible as long as the US occupies the al-Tanf area.

Kata’ib Hezbollah, the Iraqi pro-Iranian group, is reinforcing its military positions in the southern countryside of Syria’s Deir Ezzor, according to pro-government sources. Kata’ib Hezbollah fighters are currently building fortifications around their positions in the outskirt of the city of al-Mayadin.

The situation is also tense on the contact line between the army and militants in southern Idlib. According to pro-militant sources, at least 2 opposition fighters were killed in Syrian Army strikes in al-Bara and other areas in the al-Zawiya mount.

The string of assassinations of former rebel commanders continues in southern Syria. An attack with an improvised explosive device killed Issa Al-Janati, a former rebel commander in al-Quneitra. The IED attack took place near the commander’s house in the town of al-Zubaidah in the al-Quneitra countryside on August 17. Al-Janati died of his wounds, while his wife was slightly injured. Al-Janati, who is known by his nom de guerre “Abu Wassim,” used to be a senior commander in the Free Syrian Army. In 2018, he joined the reconciliation process. Nevertheless, he refused to enlist in the Syrian Arab Army or any pro-government faction.

This was the first assassination of a former rebel commander in al-Quneitra. Such assassinations take place in Daraa province on a regular basis. Local sources link them with the increased activity of Israeli special services that are not happy to see how their former proxies are changing their public position.

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