Aug. 27 — Without presenting even a hint of proof of Washington’s allegations that Syria has used poison gas, Secretary of State John Kerry has announced that a rocket attack on the sovereign state of Syria from four U.S. destroyers in the eastern Mediterranean is imminent.
Each destroyer deploys 90 cruise missiles, so even a time-limited attack would cause enormous damage.
This blatant and illegal threat, supported only by Washington’s co-criminals in London and Paris — the former colonial powers in the Middle East — drew an immediate angry reaction from anti-war organizations around the world and in the U.S. itself.
The International Action Center, the United National Antiwar Coalition and the Answer Coalition issued statements condemning U.S. war moves and calling for protest demonstrations to stop the missile attack, plus others to be held on the “day of” or “day after” the attack. The Antiwar Committee in Chicago, Arab Americans for Syria in LA, Syrian American Forum of New Jersey, Women Against Military Madness in Minneapolis, are moving.
Code Pink has called a protest during Obama’s MLK Aug. 28 speech, gathering at 10 a.m. at 12th & Constitution. Protests have already been set for New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Dearborn, Mich. and some Florida cities.
Kerry’s announcement sounded like words of the Queen in “Alice in Wonderland”: sentence first, verdict afterwards. He completely dismissed the Syrian government’s cooperation with the United Nations investigation team on the ground there that was proceeding to examine the facts, saying it was “too little, too late.”
To the anti-war forces in the U.S., Kerry’s haste is just another sign that the imperialist powers had already decided to wage war on Syria. Last week’s alleged “nerve gas” attack on the outskirts of Damascus gives every indication of being an operation by the imperialists and their agents in the Syrian opposition. President Barack Obama’s statement a year ago that a nerve gas attack would be “a red line in the sand” for a U.S. intervention made it clear what those looking for a pretext for intervention had to do.
Few believe the imperialists
Despite the imperialist media’s knee-jerk reaction of rallying around the flag, a majority of the U.S. population — 60 percent in a recent Reuters-Ipsos poll — opposes intervention in Syria and 89 percent opposes arming the “rebels.” There is even some debate among imperialist analysts. In addition, Russia, Iran, China and other countries’ governments have spoken out against a new aggressive attack. This one doesn’t even have the acquiescence of the United Nations Security Council.
The anti-war groups in the U.S. say they are certain that the imperialist establishment is again lying. Why? Because they have lied so often before — and have been caught at it. (See editorial, page 6.)
For the 1999 air war on Yugoslavia, the 2003 invasion of Iraq and the 2011 air war on Libya, wild charges of genocide and weapons of mass destruction — all later proved false — were raised as pretexts for imperialist intervention, say the war opponents.
Instead of quietly accepting yet another U.S. aggression in the interests of the profit-hungry corporations and banks, the IAC-Solidarity Center in Baltimore has called a meeting to plan protest actions in Baltimore, Columbia and Frederick, Md., and a regional demonstration in Washington, D.C.
Follow developments in the D.C. region on Facebook at tinyurl.com/l876rel. In New York, the IAC has called a demonstration for Times Square at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 29. Follow the IAC at www.iacenter.org.
Follow UNAC at unacpeace.org for a listing of all actions.
FREEDOM RIDER: AMERICAN HELL FOR SYRIA
“The White House says that United Nations inspectors in Syria are too late to investigate the chemical weapons claims and must be ignored.”
William Kristol called Barack Obama a “born again neo-con” after the president sought his advice when making the case for the over throw of the Libyan government in 2011. Kristol certainly ought to know who his compatriots are but the statement isn’t quite true.
No one becomes president who isn’t a true believer in the American empire of money and murder. They are all neo-cons, despite what they may say about immigration or gay marriage or health care. The differences at the top are small. The pinnacle of power is reserved for people who are aligned with the ruling 1% and who will use American power to dominate the world economically and militarily.
America has brought destruction on a mass scale to many parts of the world. In the past two decades that hell has been almost constant. Bush the elder and Bush the younger are both responsible for at least 1 million deaths in Iraq alone. When not sending United States troops to fight on the ground they instigated proxy wars such as between Somalia and Ethiopia. Bill Clinton bombed the former Yugoslavia, enacted deadly sanctions against the Iraqi people and backed the killers in Africa who have brought so much death to the Congo.
“The pinnacle of power is reserved for people who are aligned with the ruling 1% and who will use American power to dominate the world economically and militarily.“
Barack Obama is smarter than them all and that means the world is in very grave danger from the United States. He knows that domestic opposition to aggression is lessened if there are no American soldiers in danger. In the age of drone warfare and so-called surgical strikes, he can quiet all but those absolutely committed to peace and non-intervention. The recent claim that the Syrian government used chemical weapons against civilians is just the latest in a long line of lies used as pretexts for war by American presidents. The Gulf of Tonkin, WMD, and incubator babies stories all played pivotal roles in getting an uninformed populace to say yes to wholesale slaughter.
It is very hard to believe that the Bashar al-Assad government in Syria would commit a chemical weapons attack when it is winning the war fomented by the United States, NATO, Israel, Saudi Arabia and other gulf monarchies. President Obama went on record to say that the use of chemical weapons would draw a “red line” and trigger military action. Assad has hung on in the face of terrible odds and would be a fool to risk war when he has the advantage before peace talks are held. The talks have been delayed for months by the United States in an effort to buy time for their “rebel” allies. Assad wanted and needed these meetings to take place and wouldn’t have done anything that would give his enemies an excuse to walk away from the table. It would also be very bad timing on the eve of the next G20 summit which will be hosted by Russia, Syria’s strongest ally.
So once again we have the United States doing its usual dirty work with the help of their hand maidens in the corporate media. Just as they did in 2002 and 2003 the television networks and major newspapers repeat as gospel truth every assertion coming out of the White House. The Obama administration is taking its cues from the bad old days of George W. Bush. The White House says that United Nations inspectors in Syria are too late to investigate the chemical weapons claims and must be ignored. Without a hint of irony or mention of its previous shameful behavior the New York Times tells its readers why this must be so.
“Images of Iraqi babies with two heads or no heads are also gut wrenching and Kerry is one of the people responsible for making that moral obscenity take place.”
Also without shame or irony, Secretary of State John Kerry, made a statement which made words like propaganda seem quaint. “Let me be clear. The indiscriminate slaughter of civilians, the killing of women and children and innocent bystanders by chemical weapons is a moral obscenity.” Kerry was among the senators who voted to approve the invasion of Iraq. That invasion included the use of depleted uranium and white phosphorus against civilian populations. These weapons are still causing horrific birth defects in Iraqi children years after they were used. Kerry said that images of victims were “gut wrenching” and that he couldn’t forget seeing a father holding his dead child. Images of Iraqi babies with two heads or no heads are also gut wrenching and Kerry is one of the people responsible for making that moral obscenity take place.
The United States supported Saddam Hussein when he used chemical weapons to attack Iran in 1988. Apparently Kerry doesn’t find the recent government created carnage in Egypt very gut wrenching, nor the continued American created chaos in Somalia which has killed many babies and grieving parents. Our president brags about his personal role in determining who will be on the assassination kill list. This country is in no position to take the moral high ground about Syria or any other country.
Every claim for humanitarian intervention and responsibility to protect are based on lies meant to obscure America’s true and very base motivations. The world can only hope that Syria’s allies are able to make Obama and his friends think twice. There is no deterrent for a war mongering nation except the fear of defeat.
Margaret Kimberley’s Freedom Rider column appears weekly in BAR, and is widely reprinted elsewhere. She maintains a frequently updated blog as well as at http://freedomrider.blogspot.com. Ms. Kimberley lives in New York City, and can be reached via e-Mail at Margaret.Kimberley(at)BlackAgendaReport.com.
• ‘No smoking gun’ evidence that Syria used chemical weapons
• Israel the source for current charges of sarin gas use by Assad
By Michael Collins Piper
American Free Press
One of America’s most respected military figures charged publicly that long-standing allegations about the Syrian government’s use of chemical weapons may have been, in his words, “an Israeli false flag operation” calculated to stir up opposition to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, long perceived by Israel as a threat to its geopolitical agenda. And now that the United States seems poised to attack Syria on the basis of new claims about the use of such weapons, what former Army Col. Lawrence Wilkerson told Current TV on May 3 bears noting.
A longtime military intimate of Gen. Colin Powell, and later his chief of staff when Powell was secretary of state under “W” Bush, Wilkerson said his intelligence sources dismissed claims at that time that Assad’s military had used chemical weapons against terrorist forces. Having loomed over Assad for months, that charge has been reinvigorated and the media revels in the possibility the U.S. will now attack Syria.
However, The Los Angeles Times reported Aug. 27 that Germany’s Focus magazine—citing a former Israeli intelligence official—said Israel was the primary source for current charges about Syria’s alleged use of chemical warfare.
Noting “U.S. intelligence sources long have relied on Israel to help provide intelligence about Syria” the Times didn’t mention it was also Israel that previously supplied the Bush administration much of the false data about supposed weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, which provided the pretext for the invasion of that Arab republic. The media carefully suppresses the fact that—as demanded by the Israeli lobby in Washington—U.S. tax dollars (underwriting Israeli covert expertise) instigated the rebellion against Assad that led to the civil war that U.S. blood and treasure are now expected to resolve in a manner satisfactory to Israel.
Although the media suggests the Pentagon is eager for war on Syria, the fact is that—just as before the Iraq war when multiple military leaders were warning of the dangers of such a venture—top brass are likewise urging restraint vis-à-vis Syria.
Even Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey recently told Congress that U.S. intervention in Syria would not be in America’s interests.Yet, despite widespread public opposition to war, many Republicans and Democrats alike—bankrolled by pro-Israel campaign–are clamoring for action.