Pressure Builds for Full-Scale War on Syria
by Stephen Lendman
Rhetoric hides intent. Turkey wants safe zones, and perhaps a no-fly zone. Britain and France both said no options are ruled out, including a no-fly zone. Ahead of US November elections, Washington is more low key, but not entirely.
Obama stresses he’s open to all options. On September 27, Hillary Clinton met openly with Assad opponents at New York’s Waldorf Astoria Hotel. She did also privately with so-called Friends of Syria.
She announced millions of dollars more aid. She claimed it’s mostly for humanitarian purposes. America does nothing that way. Everything it does has ulterior motives.
Washington will also supply more communication equipment. It “includ(es) satellite-linked computers, telephones, and cameras, as well as training for” opposition elements and supporters, she said.
She expressed frustration about lack of more aggressive Security Council action. She suggested Washington may bypass the body, saying:
“It is no secret that our attempts to move forward at the UN Security Council have been blocked repeatedly, but the United States is not waiting.” She said it before. She left little doubt what she means. Obama’s UN address was also belligerent against Iran and Syria.
Expect military intervention ahead against both countries. It’s longstanding policy. Post-November 6 elections, it’s coming. All independent governments are vulnerable.
Syria and Iran top Washington’s target list. NATO countries and regional allies are pressured to go along. Some need no prodding. Israel urges it. Britain willingly partnered with America’s imperial agenda for decades.
It’s always ready to go to war if asked. It has a belligerent reputation to uphold. David Owen once served as foreign secretary. On September 27, he headlined a London Telegraph op-ed “Only a no-fly zone brokered with Russia can bring peace.”
Establishing a no-fly zone or safe havens in Syrian territory assures war. Washington’s war on Libya proved what Owen and other observers understand well.
Effectively he advocated belligerent intervention. He quoted Prime Minister David Cameron in New York saying: “The blood of these young (Syrian) children is a terrible stain on the reputation of the United Nations.”
He avoided explaining US and UK involvement. Their bloodstained hands are too obvious to ignore. He was silent on Western aggression on Syria. His government is directly responsible for lost lives.
He pointed fingers the wrong way. He blamed Security Council members with veto power. He wants Russia and China to yield to US/UK/French rage for war on Syria.
He wrongfully called conflict there civil. There’s nothing civil about it. Syria was invaded. Mercenary death squads were recruited from regional countries. They’re given safe havens in bordering countries.
Washington, Britain, France, Turkey, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Israel, and perhaps other imperial allies have been arming, funding, training, and directing them. They’re responsible for thousands of deaths. Assad’s doing his best to restore peace. He faces stiff headwinds.
Owen said he “was one of the first to argue for a no-fly zone over Libya.” He knew full well what would follow. He wants it repeated for Syria. “NATO is the only organization” able to enforce no-fly zone protection, he added.
He wants Russia pressured to go along. His notion of restoring peace is first wage war. Hasn’t he paid attention to what’s happening in Libya? At age 74, perhaps he’s prematurely senile.
More likely, he wants another country ravaged and dominated by Western powers. He’s comfortable perhaps with tens or hundreds of thousands more deaths to make it possible.
In 2011, The New York Times promoted war on Libya. It backs intervention now against Assad. It practically mocked the cold-blooded murder of Press TV correspondent Maya Naser.
A Western-recruited death squad sniper assassinated him. He was doing his job. He was alone and live on air at the time. He was vulnerable from where he reported.
The Times claimed he was embedded with Syrian forces. None were close by when he died. Press TV’s Damascus Bureau Chief Hosein Mortada was attacked and injured at the same time.
Both were covering twin Damascus blasts and ensuing fighting. Heroically, they put their lives on the line daily doing it.
Press TV News Room Director Hamid Reza Emadi said:
“We hold Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, who provide militants weapons to kill civilians, military personnel and journalists, responsible for killing Maya.
“Press TV will pursue the matter of the murder of Maya and would not let those who killed the correspondent feel like they can kill the media people and get away with it.”
Last February, The Times claimed its Syrian correspondent, Anthony Shadid, died from asthma complications. It seemed far-fetched at the time. Death by drowning is more likely. Perhaps cover-up was Times policy.
Shadid’s cousin Ed Shadid said he told his wife: “If anything happens to me, I want the world to know that The New York Times killed me.” By that he meant he didn’t want to go and got little support while there.
That aside, Times executive editor, Jill Abramson, praised him, saying:
“Anthony died as he lived – determined to bear witness to the transformation sweeping the Middle East and to testify to the suffering of people caught between government oppression and opposition forces.”
On the one hand, Abramson lied both about Shadid and what’s ongoing regionally. On the other, Shadid was praised in contrast to how Maya Naser was mocked.
Most important is what’s been ongoing in Syria since March 2011, where it’s likely heading, and how consistently The Times misreports.
Russia’s been out in front trying to restore calm and peace. On September 28, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov addressed the UN General Assembly. He reiterated comments he made earlier. The way to end conflict is to adhere to last June’s Geneva Agreement, he said.
“We proposed to adopt a resolution in the UN Security Council that would endorse the Geneva communique as the basis for negotiations at the beginning of the transitional period, but this proposal had been blocked.”
“Those who oppose the implementation of the Geneva communique in fact push Syria even deeper into the abyss of bloody sectarian strife.”
“Extremist organizations including al-Qaeda have become more active in Syria – they perpetrate terrorist attacks against innocent civilians and civil infrastructure.”
He also condemned any unilateral sanctions “imposed by a state or a group of states sidestepping the United Nations to advance their political goals.”
Without naming names, he left little doubt he blamed Washington and key NATO allies for ongoing Syrian conflict.
On September 28, China’s Xinhua New Agency headlined “Outside Meddling in Syria Threat to Whole World Order: Russian Official,” saying:
Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said:
“The attempts to look for ways out of the crisis in Syria outside the U.N. Security Council would have very destructive and dangerous consequences for Syria itself, for the Middle East region and, eventually, for the current world order as a whole.”
“Implementation of the Libyan model, supporting only one side in this confrontation is a way to nowhere.”
He also warned about worrisome regional “deep changes.” They’ll cause serious repercussions elsewhere for a long time, he added.
On September 28, Russia’s Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Khodynskaya-Golenishcheva called “inadmissible clauses” in the UN Human Rights Council’s (HRC) Syrian resolution unacceptable, saying:
“One can’t agree with the unilateral conclusions concerning the tragedy in El-Houleh as well as with the fact that these murders are similar to other such incidents in Syria.”
She added that other powers supported and encouraged Syrian violence. She left little doubt which ones she meant. It’s no secret.
It’s also well-known the HRC provided cover for Washington’s war on Syria since last year. Its reports are shameless and one-sided. They have no credibility whatever.
On September 28, it extended the mandates of the Commission of Inquiry (COI) on Syria, saying:
On September 24, its resolution A/HRC/21/L.32 addressed human rights in Syria. It was adopted 41 – 3. Russia, China and Cuba voted no. India, Uganda, and the Philippines abstained.
Supportive countries will have to explain why they supported bald-faced lies. It’s not first time and won’t be the last.
HRC “condemn(ed) in the strongest terms the massacre of the village of Al-Houla near Homs, where the forces of the Government of Syria and members of the Shabbiha were found by the Commission of Inquiry to be the perpetrators of outrageous and heinous crimes….”
HRC and voting countries know Assad had nothing to do with it. Eyewitnesses blamed death squad killers. HRC lied saying otherwise. Doing so support imperial lawlessness.
It called on all parties to cease violence. Mercenaries are entirely responsible. Well-known facts are suppressed. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay defiled her mandate.
Instead of responsibly “strengthening the promotion and protection of human rights,” she spurned them in deference to Western interests.
HRC’s so-called COI is an imperial body established to lie. It suppresses truth and full disclosure. It consistently points fingers the wrong way. Its reports ignore credible eye-witness testimonies. Clear evidence is consistently left out.
Washington said it was proud to co-sponsor the resolution. No doubt it’s gratified by ravaging one country after another and the millions of deaths it caused.
HRC systematically avoids condemnation. Instead it welcomes a rogue state member in good standing. How many more millions of corpses will it tolerate?
America’s responsible for more global violence, deaths and destruction than the rest of the world combined. Perhaps HRC can explain why this goes entirely whitewashed and unnoticed.
Perhaps one day a real HRC will replace the sham one now in place. Perhaps truth and full disclosure will have a chance it’s been denied for so long.
Syria commented on HRC’s latest act of shame, saying:
“(S)peaking as the concerned country, (Syria) condemned the presentation of the draft resolution because it made libelous statements and because the Human Rights Council was based on fundamental principles of dialogue and cooperation, and those were the ways to promote human rights.”
“This draft resolution did not reflect the reality in Syria; on the contrary, it was based on accusations and fictitious reports, such as on the Al-Houla massacre, which the Government had condemned in the strongest terms.”
“The Commission of Inquiry had not visited Syria, had not arrived to definite conclusions concerning the massacres and had not taken into account the results of the Ad Hoc Committee established by Syria to investigate the crimes.”
“The seven co-sponsors had ignored aspects of the Commission of Inquiry’s report on the barbaric acts committed by armed groups in Syria.”
“Moreover, the Commission of Inquiry had highlighted the adverse impact of sanctions on Syria, and those were also not included in this draft resolution.”
“Some of the co-sponsors forgot that they did not have the right to give advice because they were directly involved in killing the Syrian people and could not call on others to respect human rights before they respected them at home.”
“Syria rejected the draft resolution and urged all countries that sincerely wished to help the Syrian people to vote against.”
Imperial countries, supportive bodies, and go-along media never say they’re sorry. Hegemons ravage humanity for wealth, privilege, and dominance. Supporters back what they should condemn.
Millions everywhere suffer horrifically. They’re on their own to survive and change things. Hopefully they’ll try before it’s too late.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book is titled “How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized Banking, Government Collusion and Class War”
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.