Both the designation of the US citizen, Ghassan Hitto as “interim Prime Minister” by the SNC, and Aron Lund’s myth-shattering report “The Free Syrian Army Doesn’t Exist”, make it increasingly clear that the Syrian opposition (and by Syrian opposition I mean the FSA and the Syrian National Coalition) today is little more than a PR stunt engineered by the US & allies and sustained by corporate media and a slick social media campaign. As detailed by Lund’s study, the FSA is nothing but a branding operation which refers to the uprising in general, or more specifically, to the non-Islamist rebel groups. Elsewhere, Lund asserts that “virtually all of the major armed groups have by now declared that they want an Islamic state,” suggesting that most of the rebels belong to Salafi and Salafi jihadi groups. In other words, the notion of a secular armed opposition is a media creation.
Add to the myth of the FSA , Hitto’s appointment as PM of Nothing Really, and one begins to understand just how much more of a psycho-ops than a pysch- ops campaign we are dealing with, which aims to remold reality in the crudest attempt at wish fulfillment and mass-delusion. Not even language has escaped the new psycho-ops, as concepts like legitimacy have now been re-conceptualized to mean whatever- the- US-recognizes, such as when it arbitrarily decides that the SNC is “the sole legitimate representative of the Syrian people”. So over and above the concepts of “popular legitimacy” and “constitutional legitimacy”, we now have the oxymoronic notion of “external legitimacy” which can seemingly exist without either of the other two types.
Just to put things in perspective: The Syrian government is not up against some fantasy Syrian “opposition” but against foreign- backed Salafis, Jihadis and al-Qaeda inspired groups who are not merely Islamists but vehemently sectarian Islamists whose modus operandi includes terrorist bombings and executions. And there is no actual Syrian executive other than President Bashar al-Assad. And no amount of psych-ops or psycho-ops will change either of these facts.
The old colonial powers stage a comeback: the UK and France, whose sovereignty doesn’t rely on the approval of other nations, according to its FM (in contradistinction to anti-imperialist nations’ like Syria whose sovereignty can only be determined by western powers it seems) are in a huge rush to arm Salafi Takfiri and Wahhabi terrorists and just plain old sectarian executioners. You see, even if they end up in these “wrong hands” as Hague admitted recently, its well worth the “balance of risks”. This balance is so lopsided, that these same groups which the respected British charity, Save the Children, has accused of using children as human shields, soldiers and informers, are now lauded as “resistance fighters” by Hague and Fabius. Apparently the only way to stem the bloodshed and defuse the regional sectarian war that Hague brazenly warned of last week, is to arm sectarian child killers, executioners and terrorists. Way to go leaders of the “civilized” liberal western democratic world! Abu Qatada is surely beaming at you with pride.
‘The bombing, blamed on “terrorists” by both the regime and its opponents…The attack was “carried out by armed terrorist groups linked to Al-Qaeda that receive financial and logistic help from abroad,” the foreign ministry said, using government terminology for rebels.’ You read that people? According to AFP, the Syrian Foreign Ministry is clearly using biased terminology when it describes the nihilistic violence which claimed 60 innocent lives today as “terrorism.” This type of “terminology” is strictly reserved for the Syrian “regime” which is so detached from reality that it is misreading and mislabeling as terrorism, the freedom-seeking struggle of “rebels”— a term which AFP suggests is a far more accurate term to describe the perpetrators of this bloodbath. Clearly, the Syrian government’s definition of terrorism represents a significant departure from the prevailing legal and linguistic consensus on the term which defines it as “the unlawful use of violence or threat of violence to instill fear and coerce governments or societies…. motivated by religious, political, or other ideological beliefs and committed in the pursuit of goals that are usually political.” After all, the US Defense Department’s definition cited here only refers to violence that harms US interests. All other acts which fit neatly into this definition are liberation struggles led by rebels not terrorists. And so long as the religion they are motivated by is House Islamism, it’s all good.
Addendum* : AP also made this disgusting attempt to sanitize today’s terrorism as guerrilla warfare : “But the recent bombings and mortar attacks suggest that instead of trying a major assault, rebel fighters are resorting to guerrilla tactics to loosen Assad’s grip on the heavily fortified capital.” See “rebels” are “resorting” [i.e. being forced to] adopt “guerrilla tactics”, with all the positive liberationist connotations such a term conveys.
I was going to deconstruct this delusional rant , point by point but then realised that as Borzou’s post below indicates, it would be in vain as he is clearly impervious to logical reasoning or empirical evidence. How dare this native informant masquerading as a respectable journalist (who interviewed me numerous times in the past btw) lecture us on journalistic ethics? How dare he judge what constitutes extremism on behalf of Syrians who are being raped and executed solely on account of their sectarian affiliation? How dare this colonized House Iranian claim we “make cursory mention of the regime’s brutality”’ because we “won’t have any credibility if you don’t”? How dare he say this when he is the one absolving the barbaric groups that make up the FSA from their heinous war crimes. How dare he think we give a damn about appearing credible to the white man, as if corporate media represents the zero point of neutrality; as if Borzou and his ilk are the measure of objectivity and methodological rigor. We acknowledge the regime’s excesses because unlike MSM and its information warriors like Borzou, we can be objective even when we aren’t neutral, not because we seek recognition from the mainstream media spin machine. This post below is nothing but a cheap shot at colonizing reality, or reality enforcement administered by imperialist lackeys like Borzou who have lost all credibility as an independent journalist in the eyes that count: OUR eyes.
This is my guide for Syria analysts and journalists who want to defend Bashar Assad while continuing to retain their credibility in the West.
1. Keep mentioning Jubhat al Nasra and other Islamic jihadi groups without mentioning that the vast majority of armed groups are not nearly as extreme, are mostly locally based folks defending their towns and villages.
2. When referring to the armed opposition keep using the magic word: AL QAEDA
3. Make cursory mention of the regime’s brutality (you won’t have any credibility if you don’t) but avoid resurrecting the roots of the conflict in peaceful opposition to Bashar’s dictatorship. Avoid mention of wanton use of air power against civilians in bread lines and in their homes.
4. Keep talking about NATO, the Gulf countries and Western support for opposition; that will boost Bashar’s anti-imperialist creds among the campus leftists.
5. Focus on faults of incompetent and disorganized Syrian opposition abroad instead of networks of activists and homegrown civil society already establishing governance inside.
6. Frame Russia as an honest broker trying to peacefully resolve conflict instead of a shrewd chess player that doesn’t give a damn about Syrian civilians and murdered tens of thousands of Chechens in an attempt to put down a rebellion in the 1990s.
7. Keep warning about consequences of Syria state’s collapse: sectarian war, refugees in Europe, rise of an Islamist state.
8. Keep raising rare instances of rebel misconduct and faked videos and frame them as emblematic of the overall opposition.
9. Make the opposition look intransigent; they’re the ones who won’t agree to a peaceful settlement, not the president who did no reforms for 10 years and dispatched shabiha to murder peaceful protesters when they spoke out.
10. Pray to God (even if you are an athiest) that the rebels don’t get to Damascus, open up the files and find out what you did for the regime, the details of conversations on how you got your visas and your access to officials.
It is a term used in all the history books, all the academic studies, all past media reports, all the policy papers published by think tanks, all the public pronouncements by western officials; it is the term “Syria” that was always used to denote its government, the Assad leadership. If before this conflict “Syria” and its government were synonymous, there is all the more reason for it to remain so now because our struggle isn’t in defense of this government, it is in defense of Syria. The opposition never has and never will be referred to as Syria, because the culture that celebrates hate, torture and execution and flaunts these crimes with pride, will never take root among the overwhelming majority of Syrian people and therefore can never become Syria. That is the difference. Despite the many flaws and crimes committed by this government, this is not a battle between a regime and a homegrown opposition movement; it is a battle between Syria and Syria’s enemies. And we must naturalize this term: Syria killed 15 terrorists today; a car bomb targeted Syria today; Syria denounces Arab and western intervention; Syria needs our support.
Just a reminder [to the left which scoffs at anti-imperialists], that imperialism isn’t only our enemy because it undermines our dignity and independence, but because it is the BIGGEST KILLER. Imperialism is terrorism as Glenn Greenwald’s report below illustrates:
“The US government has long maintained, reasonably enough, that a defining tactic of terrorism is to launch a follow-up attack aimed at those who go to the scene of the original attack to rescue the wounded and remove the dead. Morally, such methods have also been widely condemned by the west as a hallmark of savagery. Yet, as was demonstrated yet again this weekend in Pakistan, this has become one of the favorite tactics of the very same US government…
In February, the Bureau of Investigative Journalism documented that “the CIA’s drone campaign in Pakistan has killed dozens of civilians who had gone to help rescue victims or were attending funerals.” Specifically: “at least 50 civilians were killed in follow-up strikes when they had gone to help victims.”
Not only does that tactic intimidate rescuers from helping the wounded and removing the dead, but it also ensures that journalists will be unwilling to go to the scene of a drone attack out of fear of a follow-up attack.”
Forget Farid Zakaria’s plagiarism, now you have this NYT fool who fabricates quotes. Here he quotes Seyyid Hassan Nasrallah as saying that a European blacklist would “destroy Hezbollah. The sources of our funding will dry up and the sources of moral political and material support will be destroyed.”
I have read and/or listened to almost every single speech Nasrallah has made and not once has he said any such thing. If anything he has only ever dismissed terrorist labelling. for example on August 14 2007 he said ““First, they concentrated on the charge of terrorism -and they had worked on it for many years. It could have an effect in some parts of the Western world, but it no longer has an effect among the peoples of our Arab and Muslim world or among our people in Lebanon. The charge of terrorism— for which they harnessed all the media and the means of incitement and their diplomatic efforts —has begun to break down, even in Europe and in many parts of the world.”
And then on May 25, 2011 he said “But I would like to tell you that when America and Israel attack us, and when the presidents of the biggest two countries of occupation, killing, and terrorism attack us, we feel proud and honoured.”
The quote doesn’t even make sense: why would Iran, Hizbullah’s biggest donor, cut off funding to Hizbullah if the movement was classified as terrorist? Iran has been sanctioned to death anyway so it can continue “supporting terror” as before, and it could continue funding Hizbullah under the table as it has done for decades without any hard evidence that would incriminate it. Moreover, if Hizbullah were branded as terrorist how would that diminish support for the resistance movement? Since when do western designations determine anti-Zionist Arabs’ political support? If anything, western approval of Arab political actors usually detracts from their popular support. I defy the liar who lazily fabricated this quote and/or the NYT to provide evidence such as a video link or Arabic transcription of the alleged speech from a reliable source.
So desperate is the United States to bring Hizbullah to its knees that its mainstream media branch of government (and yes it is a branch and not an autonomous civil society actor, just like think tanks aren’t) now has to invent quotes which depict the movement as being cowered by western bullying. Let them dream on.
(AP) — Gunmen raided the headquarters of a pro-government Syrian TV station early Wednesday, demolishing the building and killing three employees, the state media reported. Officials denounced what they called a rebel “massacre against the freedom of the press.”
SANA added that the attack on Ikhbariya TV occurred in the town of Drousha, about 20 kilometers (14 miles) south of the capital Damascus. Hours after the attack, the station was still on the air broadcasting its programs.
Ikhbariya is privately-owned but strongly supports President Bashar Assad’s regime. Pro-government journalists have been targeted on several previous occasions during the 15-month uprising against President Bashar Assad’s regime, although such incidents are comparatively rare.
Earlier this month, two Ikhbariya employees were shot and seriously wounded by gunmen in the northwestern town of Haffa while covering clashes between government troops and insurgents.
Rebels deny they target the media. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights confirmed the raid and the deaths of several employees, but had no other information.
Information Minister Omran al-Zoebi told reporters outside the station that gunmen stormed the compound, placed explosives and then detonated them.
“What happened today is a massacre, a massacre against the freedom of the press,” al-Zoebi said in comments broadcast on state-run Syrian TV. “They carried out a terrifying massacre by executing the employees.”
An employee at the station said several other employees were wounded in the attack and other guards were kidnapped when the gunmen attacked just before 4 a.m. local time.
The employee, who did not give his name for fear of repercussions, said the gunmen drove him about 200 meters (yards) away, and then he heard the explosion of the station being demolished. “I was terrified when they blindfolded me and took me away,” the man said by telephone.
State-run Syrian TV showed a demolished structure without a ceiling, saying it was the station’s main studio. It also showed what it said were tapes on fire amid piles of debris.
Was just commenting on a Facebook thread about how frustrating it was to feel hesitant about referring to the Northwoods’ document (a declassified report which was drafted by the US Joint Chiefs of Staff in 1962, proposing to commit false flag operations on US soil—terrorism and such—which would then be blamed on the Castro government) in relation to the Houla massacre, as Professor Choussodovsky does here, lest one be psycho-pathologized as a “conspiracy theorist.” My FB friend, Sana al-Yemen, responded with this brilliant observation: “Question life you are a scientist, religion you are a philosopher, the mind you are a psychologist, historical events you are a historian..But question governments and you are a conspiracy theorist..”
And no, I am not arguing US agents/forces helped orchestrate Houla, as the Syrian rebels/al-Qaeda inspired groups are perfectly capable of committing such atrocities on their own. But it is important to recall such false flag operations if only to see, at the very least, how very feasible it is for a government which has such precedents, to engage in the kind of black propaganda which deliberately misattributes blame for atrocities committed by one party onto another.
Owing to the fact that the only a very small and select segment of Assad’s speech was covered in the English language press today, I translated some excerpts which didn’t make their way to mainstream media. After a careful reading of the speech, I can see why they excluded these parts, because to include them would be to undermine and discredit the mainstream narrative which depicts Assad as a brutal psychopath who is incapable of rational and meaningful discourse, let alone intellectual nuances. In fact, the Syrian leader made some very compelling arguments on a number of points, even engaging in conceptual deconstruction— a semantic exercise which, given the extent of western and Arab information warfare against the regime, is viewed by him as the first step to finding a resolution to the conflict. Assad is clearly aware of the importance of resisting discursive imperialism, which has played a huge role in this battle. In layman’s terms: lets start speaking the same language at least if we have any hope of solving this crisis.
Translated excerpts below with my commentary in bold.
Not distinguishing between terrorism and the political process is a grave error which legitimizes terrorism…distinguishing between them is essential for understanding how to proceed [with the crisis].
This is a very valid point because the mainstream media and the “international” community commonly conflate the regime’s fight against terrorism, which is otherwise known as the “armed opposition”, with its reform process. In other words, its war against the terrorists is depicted a generic regime violence which targets unarmed protestors and which hence, undermines and negates any reforms it may have enacted. The implicit suggestion is that the regime should end its violence, i.e. its war against the terrorists
Much has been said about the political solution since the beginning of the crisis and there are those who talk of a political solution and other points or details related to it but until now, not one of them has suggested what is the relationship between a political solution and the terrorism which has dominated [the scene] since the beginning of the crisis…Will dialogue and a political solution stop the terrorist from doing what he has been doing until now? And did this terrorist decapitate heads and commit all kinds of heinous terror because there are two sides in Syria who are in a disagreement with each other? And does this mean that once we engage dialogue and agree on a political solution, the terrorist will say the reasons [for the terrorism] are now gone and I will abandon my terrorism?…this is illogical.
Obviously, the purpose of this passage is not to justify the absence of a compromise between both sides, but rather, to justify the regime’s need to continue with its policy of rooting out the terrorists who are committing a large portion of the insurrectionist violence, as well as those who are working with outside powers to transform Syria into a new Bengazi. It is his response to those who argue that a political solution alone would suffice to end the violence and civil war gripping Syria. Assad is emphasizing that the solution not only has a political dimension, but a security one as well.
We know that we are not facing a political problem because had we been faced with a mere political problem a side/party would have proposed a political or economic program and which we would then have responded to with a political or economic program of our own and in fact, this is what we did despite knowing from day one that the problem isn’t a political one. What we are facing is civil strife and destruction of the nation and terrorism is its tool.
We are facing a real war waged from the outside, and wars are dealt with differently from internal disputes.
Terrorism isn’t related to the political process; it is a separate phenomenon and its treatment is different. It doesn’t conform to any of the aforementioned criteria. We need to combat terrorism in order to cure the nation. As such, there should be no appeasement with it [terrorism]or with those who sponsor it, and none, save those who abandon it, should be forgiven. We will remain steadfast in our fight against terrorism while leaving the door open to all those who abandon it, provided their hands are not tainted with blood. Thousands of those implicated in bearing arms have been questioned and the state forgave them.
After talking about the political process, what is the political solution? The process itself won’t resolve the current crisis and won’t reduce terrorism. The political solution is something which is more comprehensive than mere laws and a constitution, and it is tied to all the underlying causes which led to this crisis, and which permitted foreigners—if we assume that we can count so-called “Arabs” as foreigners—to interfere in internal Syrian affairs… We need a political solution for all these things and all the legislation we passed can help in this but only up to a point. The political solution doesn’t start with laws, or with the constitution, or with any of these measures, but with [addressing] flawed concepts which we hadn’t taken note of before, but which must be dealt with at this stage.
Here, Assad is making a very important distinction between the political process and a political solution, contending that the two are not synonymous, and that the latter requires more than just reforms. Thus, although the solution is by definition political, it isn’t merely procedural. As before, the insinuation here is that a political solution is also in part, a security solution which addresses the underlying causes of the conflict—namely, outside intervention.
The political solution begins by distinguishing between a difference of opinion which is enriching, and a difference over the nation, which means destruction. Pluralism doesn’t mean fighting and clashes, but rather, complementing [one another] without being homogenous. Pluralism is an intellectual state before it is a political one, whereby we accept ideas which contradict our own, provided they don’t violate national interests and national peace. The solution begins when we understand that in firmly rooted nations faced with crisis situations, differences are resolved to the nation’s benefit. And the matter at hand is [judged as] either for or against the nation, not, for or against the regime and state. When priorities are based on the national interest and not on personal emotions, and when we base our debates on the distinction between opinion and truth, between aspirations and reality, and understand the relationship between ideologies and interests, we will realise that tactics which aren’t guided by a strategy are doomed to fail.
Some confuse between opposing state policies or specific officials’ behaviour, and opposing the nation. And this has happened in many cases and there also people who distinguished between the two cases, and there are also people who participated in supportive [of the regime] rallies which we saw quite a lot of and these are people who don’t support the state’s policies and they oppose many public officials’ behaviour but they are nationalists who know how to distinguish between the two, and they took to the streets to support the nation…
Did the millions of these Syrians who took to the streets [in loyalist rallies], do so because they support the mistakes? Or because they oppose freedom? Or because they support corruption and bribery? Knowing that these millions are those who are most affected by these mistakes and most opposed to such mistakes, and yet, they knew this wasn’t the appropriate time to talk about such matters and they knew that the aim [of the opposition and its foreign backers] was to replace these mistakes with huge catastrophes.
National greyness is no longer acceptable. In my previous speech…I spoke about how grey is no longer acceptable, and some accused me of eliminating other colours in the spectrum, that there was only black or white. The truth is, these people don’t distinguish between political greyness and national greyness. When there are parties and political currents and political figures who are in a state of disagreement or competition, I can afford to stand in the grey zone, I don’t have be with the first or second or third side…But, when the issue is a national one, and the problem is between my nation and another nation, I am automatically on my nation’s side, otherwise I am a traitor.
Here, Assad is basically equating Third Wayism with treason.
[On who was behind the Houla massacre] In such cases, the most basic question one asks is who stands to benefit and would the state and those who support it [i.e. shabeeha] take this action on the eve of Kofi Annan’s visit ? And we know who wants Anan’s plan and visit to be a failure. Did the state and those who support it take such action to subject itself to even more hostility from the Security Council’s members? This is illogical..
The crisis isn’t an internal crisis, it is a foreign war which is being waged with internal tools
There is a new, and quite plausible, alternative narrative that has emerged these past two days which describes the Houla massacre as Alawite retaliation for an earlier massacre committed by armed Sunni oppositionists against the Alawite village of al-Shoumariyeh. According to many unconfirmed reports, vengeful and armed villagers and /or shabiha retaliated for the massacre by butchering villagers from the neighbouring village of Houla. Apparently, the artillery rounds the Syrian army fired at rebel-controlled Houla was an attempt to end the bloodshed in Shamariyeh, or something to that effect. How the perpetrators of the massacre entered a rebel stronghold and executed such a large massacre unimpeded remains to be seen.
Although some claim the al-Shoumariyeh massacre occurred after the Houla massacre, the Syrian news agency, SANA, reports that “foreign-funded armed terrorist groups” committed massacres in al-Shoumariyeh and Taldao on Friday, 25 May, at 2:00 p.m. Considering that the Houla massacre is widely reported to have commenced around 3 p.m. that same day, it does appear that the Houla massacre occurred after the first two, or around the same time. None of this confirms the new narrative, but it doesn’t undermine it either.
While the details are still very murky, the UN seems to have caught on to this story, or some related version thereof, as its -peacekeeping chief Herve Ladsous recently declared ”There is strong suspicion that the Shabiha were involved in this tragedy in Houla.” Russia has given its blessing to a UN investigation into the incident.
Like any of the narratives about the Houla massacre, the above story has not been substantiated by any evidence, least of all the dominant narrative which places the blame squarely on the Syrian regime. I only chose to comment on this alternative narrative because I deemed it more plausible than the latter, and hence, worthy of commentary, but it remains a narrative not a fact. I don’t necessarily deem it the most probable explanation for what happened in Houla on May 25, given how much the massacre served US-NATO-GCC interests. What I am arguing here though, is that even if we assume that this Alawite revenge narrative is true, that should not implicate the Syrian regime in the massacre.
I wrote a short post a few days ago on why I thought it highly unlikely the “regime” would commit an atrocity like this. I still stand by my analysis, despite the materialization of this new narrative. When I said regime, I actually meant the Syrian army, as all fingers were initially pointed at it. I didn’t/ still don’t think it makes any sense for a conventional armed force with a clear chain of command to subject itself to charges of war crimes—which is much easier to make when there is a clear-cut organizational hierarchy and hence, accountability, not to mention potential refusniks and defectors given the heinous nature of the crime— in a context of overwhelming international pressure and when the entire world is watching every move and mismove it makes. While I am aware that the shabiha constitute the state’s “unofficial” arm, (some compare it to Iran’s basij), I still deem it highly improbable that the Assad leadership would order shabiha to carry out a killing rampage on its behalf in a Sunni village it had already shelled, for the same reasons I outlined in my earlier post: it stands everything to lose and nothing to gain. And no, the “gain” of terrorizing the villagers and rebels into submission (assuming that is even an effective method of reasserting control) just doesn’t outweigh all the risks that accompany such a tactic. It is much more probable, that these armed elements acted out of revenge of their own accord, as revenge massacres often are.
As for the argument by opposition supporters and others, which regards the regime as being ultimately responsible for all violence, irrespective of its source, the fact remains that this is a government which no longer has full control of its territory, or a monopoly on the use of violence. Indeed, it is precisely for this reason that it’s trying to retrieve sovereignty over its land by the force of arms, and in so doing, exposing itself to often unfounded accusations of wide-scale repression, killing and war crimes. At the end of the day, what we have in Syria is a situation characterized by sectarian warfare, armed insurrection, al-Qaeda terrorism and blatant NATO-GCC intervention —hardly the ingredients of a strong centralized government which can be held to account for every act of violence that takes place on Syrian soil.
One can only wait for an impartial and objective inquiry before jumping to make predetermined conclusions which only serve the agenda of those pushing for a NATO invasion of Syria. So much political capital is being made out of this inconceivably evil massacre: Both France and the US have now expressed their willingness for military intervention in Syria as a result of this atrocity, which Kofi Annan has rightly labelled it a “tipping point” in the conflict. Uncovering the perpetrators is therefore imperative not only for justice to be served but also for averting a wider regional war.
Brilliantly argued piece critiquing the mainstream narrative about the Houla massacre:
“Cui bono? Who benefits… from another civilian massacre? Clearly not the Syrian government. But western-backed terrorist groups who have been working to destablize the country for over one year now, do clearly benefit…Who would be the chief suspect for this latest massacre? How about the western-backed terrorists in Syria – the very same terrorist groups admitted to their own bombing campaign that killed many innocent people in Syria only weeks ago. Take notes. Because this is how it’s done, time and time again – another clear example how large media outlets can effectively drive reality in the direction of their choosing, and this is why so many millions of public media consumers are left misinformed and dis informed, eventually leading to a marginal public endorsement of Washington, London and Tel Aviv’s interventionist foreign policy objectives.”
"What courage it must take to be a regime opponent or “third wayer” right now yelling at both sides, while charred bodies smolder. Yes down with Assad, down with US/Israel/al-Qaeda while Syria is engulfed in civil war and invasion by proxy. The territorial integrity of Syria thanks you for your high morals. Syria’s internal stability thanks you. The resistance’s weapons thank you. Palestine thanks you. We all thank you for maintaining your intellectual consistency while you sit there powerless to effect real change on the ground beyond playing into the hands of the information warlords."
So after today’s suicide bombing by opposition forces (most likely the same al-Qaeda linked/inspired groups that have claimed responsibility for previous terrorist attacks), here’s how the news wires covered the attack:
Associated Press: “The regime blamed Friday’s attack on unspecified “terrorists” - the term it uses to describe opposition forces that it says are carrying out a foreign conspiracy.”
AFP: “The report blamed “terrorists,” the term used by President Bashar al-Assad’s regime to refer to the armed opposition…Assad’s regime has repeatedly blamed “armed terrorist groups” for the violence, and for failing to abide by a putative ceasefire that went into force on April 12.”
First of all, there is the ever-present, and borderline sarcastic, reference to how the regime perceives the armed opposition as carrying out a “foreign conspiracy”. So Turkey’s hosting and arming of the opposition and FSA, and the US and other “Friends of Syria’s” declared intent [if not after-the-fact acknowledgement] to arm these groups, should not be interpreted by the regime as a foreign conspiracy to overthrow it, nor should Israeli officials’ admissions of meeting with elements in the Syrian opposition, or France’s saber-rattling for military intervention. By extension, groups receiving this aid are not involved in this conspiracy and the regime’s depiction of them as such is surely delusional. Well, to some extent it is injudicious of the Assad regime to continue to refer to what is an openly belligerent US-western-Turkish-Arab-Israeli-al-Qaeda war against it as a hidden conspiracy. It is an openly declared foreign war on Syria, and not an ill-concealed foreign conspiracy.
Second, according to mainstream media’s logic, a suicide bombing which targets innocent civilians isn’t necessarily a terrorist attack, hence the need to use the term “terrorist” in quotation marks and to clarify what is really meant by it. Thus for example, the Assad regime “describes” or “refers” to the perpetrators of this attack as “terrorists” when in reality they are merely the “armed opposition”. This despite the fact that almost all definitions of terrorism share one common denominator— irrespective of their other differences— which is the deliberate use of force, or the threat of force, against civilian targets for political purposes. Mainstream news agencies have not hesitated in the past to refer to such attacks on western soil as “terrorism”, but the failure to do so in the case of Syria reflects their not-so-hidden political agendas and the degree of their embeddedness in Empire’s foreign policy objectives. More than this, their legitimization of such violence as routine armed opposition tactics essentially whitewashes terrorism as a form of morally acceptable insurrectionist warfare, and as such, is tantamount to complicity in these acts of terrorism. As Colonel Ralph Peters admits in the article I posted yesterday on information warfare: “ OUR CREATIVITY IS DEVASTATING.” Indeed it is, for it kills innocent lives and then walks in their funerals, as the Arabic proverb goes.
So it isn’t just donating money to Hizbullah which is illegal, but anyone in the US who pledges verbal support for Hizbullah in the privacy of their own home is now considered a suspect FBI Assistant Special Agent Todd Mayberry: “If you preach in your mosque or in…YOUR HOME, where you espouse Hizballah rhetoric and you say how great they are and everything, you’re going to get a case opened…They are terrorists.”Everybody has their opinion…It’s a free country up and to a point. But they are a terrorist group.”