#014 – “Moderate Rebels?”

The “Moderated Rebels” in Syria

“This is a war on Syria, with terrorists from over 100 nations, waging their wicked and distorted version of Jihad in Syria, or just acting as paid and drugged out mercenaries.” Canadian journalist Eva Bartlett.

East Aleppo has been occupied by a number of groups backed by the United States, NATO and their allies in the Gulf, like Saudi Arabia, and Israel. “And we’re going to learn a lot more about the “rebels” whom we in the West – the US, Britain and our head-chopping mates in the Gulf – have been supporting.” Robert Fisk – The Independent

We know that the ‘rebels’ of eastern Aleppo have executed their enemies and have slit the throats of their prisoners. We know that the “rebels” include al-Qaeda (alias Jabhat al-Nusra, alias Jabhat Fateh al-Sham), the “folk” – as George W Bush called them – who committed the crimes against humanity in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania on September 11th 2001. Remember the War on Terror. Remember the “pure evil” of al-Qaeda.

“Does McCain Have Any Shred of Honor Left?”- The Atlantic

However, in Washington, we hear “How could the US stand by watching and not do anything?” The audacity of these interventionist, neocons and their mainstream media sock puppets. Hello! We did do something! We helped to created Aleppo and the Syrian tragedy because we did not stand by and watch. The US picked “sides” in the Syrian civil war. Our side is the side of the ‘moderate rebels” and a push for regime change in a sovereign country.

Remember when then Secretary of State Clinton and President Obama both called for regime change. Does that catch phase “Assad must go” ring a bell? Remember when war hawk Senator McCain was begging for funds and military support for any and all rebels groups fighting for “freedom” in Syria. We chose to support some of those rebels.

So who are these freedom loving rebels that want to spread democracy? In 2013, McCain entered Syria, probably illegally, to meet with the “moderate rebels”. It was a great photo opportunity to send pictures back home to the gang. There is nothing like a photo of some old war hawk hanging out with the rebels to get the blood flowing. It just like Viagra for the neocons.

Showing up in those “photo ops” were ISIS members, Al Qaeda and members of the Free Syria Army. In the McCain photos there were many high profile “rebel” commanders, including the leader of ISIS himself, Al Baghdadi. It was a virtual who’s who of murders.

McCain’s tweet describing the gallery was “Important visit with brave fighters in #Syria who are risking their lives for freedom and need our help” How can anyone even look at this buffoon let alone listen to him. He has no credibility but he continues to bang that drum. Earlier this month Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) was joined by (maybe a bigger buffoon) Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) to criticize the Obama administration for “inaction” on Syria.

As president Bashar Assad’s forces are reclaiming Aleppo from McCain’s rebel buddies, maybe the mainstream media should shine more light on the rebel groups. Under further scrutiny the rebels may be exposed as a group not quite living up to McCain’s billing as freedom fighters.

Aleppo

The battle of east Aleppo has been brutal. The Syrian military admits that it has killed civilians. But the civilian casualties of artillery shells on western Aleppo fired by the ‘rebels’ has been, until recently, almost totally ignored.

Civilians in the government-held area of western Aleppo describe these groups as “terrorists,” Most Syrians make no differentiation between any specific group. According to the Syrian civilians, these groups are made up of criminals, mercenaries and terrorists.

Canadian Eva Bartlett is one of the few independent Western journalists covering the horrific conflict in Syria has traveled to Syria six times in the last two years and three times in the last six months. She is currently touring the US with a coalition called Hands Off Syria.

Her full interview can be read at Consortium News:
https://consortiumnews.com/2016/12/20/extracting-aleppo-from-the-propaganda/

In the interview Eva describes the activities that the “moderate rebels” perpetrating on the Syrian people in Aleppo. “Terrorists that are in many ways backed by the West and Gulf nations, financially and otherwise, were, on a daily basis, firing a variety of bombs on the civilian areas of Aleppo, which we never hear about in the corporate media.”

In a first hand account of her stay in Aleppo she describes the damage that the US backed “moderate rebels” inflicted. “In May of this year the al-Dabit Maternity Hospital was destroyed by a terrorist’s fired rocket. And when it was destroyed, three women inside were killed, and many more were injured. This was not, to my knowledge, reported in the corporate media, although the media’s always talking about alleged (Russian/Syrian) strikes on hospitals in Aleppo.”

Ms. Bartlett refers the rebel groups as terrorist not moderate rebels. “I do mean terrorists from those groups and also from the so-called Free Syrian Army. The Free Syrian Army has been as heinous and as gruesome as ISIS and as al-Nusra.” The same rebel groups that Sen McCain’s had his picture taken with just a few years ago.

The “lackey corporate media”

Ms Bartlett talked about the tactic that the U.S. administration and their “lackey corporate media” use to whitewash the crimes of the terrorists as they vilify the (Syrian) government. They report the allegations but ignore the findings. The example she gives is in reference to the alleged gassing of Syrian citizens by the Assad government.

“The myths we’ve heard about Syria, over the years, the Syrian government has been accused of so many things, chemical weapons, they’ve been accused of massacring civilians. And every time there has been an investigation, all fingers have pointed to the rebels. Even Carla Del Ponte, who’s of the U.N. investigative team in a 2013 chemical attacks accusations, said, “No, it was the terrorists/rebels that had sarin.”

When asked what’s missing from the U.S. corporate media’s picture?  She responded, “what we’re not hearing, now, from the corporate media: The scenes, the voices of the people who have been liberated, saying “Thank you” to the (Syrian) army. The army, by the way are not Assad’s forces. The army, the Syrian army is actually made up of Syrian people. And it’s not simply Alawite. It’s Sunni, it’s Alawite, it’s Christian and the people in Aleppo… you will find footage of people praising the army. And people who have been terrorized for years by these terrorists that the West calls “moderates”.

Asked, “what would your advice be to U.S. officials dealing at this point? What would you want to see happen?” Ms Bartlett’s solution is to “stop arming the terrorists, stop whitewashing their crimes. Stop allowing Turkey to keep its borders open and terrorists to flood in and out through Turkey’s borders. Stop supporting the regimes of Saudi Arabia, which are in turn arming terrorists, which are brainwashing terrorists. Stop interfering in a sovereign nation.”

“Economic Terrorism”

Is the Syrian conflict just another NATO intervention, a dirty war being inflicted upon a sovereign nation, with the objective of “regime change”? Regardless of the why, the cost of this war is the bloodshed and devastating costs incurred by the Syrian people.

In March 2015, a member of the Syrian parliament, Maria Saadeh, addressed the United Nations Human Rights Commission wrote “In 2011 the UN and its member states started to impose “economic sanctions” against the Syrian regime. These sanctions imposed have been a punitive action against the Syrian people”

In the document entitled ‘Economic Terrorism’ compared the results of terrorist organizations in Syria with the effects of coercive measures taken under the label of ‘economic sanctions.’ These sanctions violate international law in the same way as terrorism does. Their results and effects are the same; they attack Syrian society and violate human rights, especially the right to life.

As a result of the sanctions, unemployment has risen from 8.6% in 2010 to 50% in 2014; poverty reached 75% in 2013 where it was 9% in 2010; the number of children in primary education has fallen to 50%; the same number of hospitals and factories have closed as a result of the sanctions as a result of terrorism.

Ms. Eva Bartlett concludes, “So, you know, if U.S. officials, with all their crocodile tears, actually care about human rights in Syria, stop supporting the terrorists who are destroying the country.”  She went on to say, “nobody is saying the government (Syria) is perfect. Because no government is perfect.”  Not even the US Government.

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