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SYRIA: The Emerging Reality of the U.S Coalition Regime Change War – On the Ground Reporting

Life and food return to Douma after liberation by SAA from Saudi-backed, UK-promoted Jaish Al Islam terrorists. (Photo: Vanessa Beeley)

David Macilwain
21st Century Wire

The withdrawal of US coalition support for “rebels” in Syria, portrayed as a failure to achieve noble and humanitarian goals by Western governments and media, should rather be seen as an admission of guilt. The rescuing of violent militants and “White Helmets” from Southern Syria by Israeli forces actually marked the failure of the covert project to forcibly replace Syria’s legitimate government with one of NATO’s choice, regardless of the democratic will and lives of the Syrian people.

Before we can ask “what if?” about the war on Syria, as Ramesh Thakur does in “The Strategist”, republished here on P&I, we need to understand what actually happened during the Western-sponsored seven-year long assault on the Syrian state, as seen from the perspective of those on the receiving end of this attack. Now that the Syrian Arab Army and its allies are finally prevailing in their defence of the country and its citizens, it is also time for Western commentators to stop repeating the same vapid accusations against the Syrian President, and instead start making accusations against their own “mis-leaders”.

Rather it appears that many in the West are entrenching their opposition to the Syrian government at the same time as millions of Syrians are confirming their support for it, and the armies that have fought off their enemies’ chosen alternative.

Ramesh Thakur’s partisan view on the “Syrian civil war” and the benign nature of the West’s intimate involvement in it is evidently shared by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, and – one would imagine – by many of those in public office who act on its advice. The same innocence could not be assumed for ASPI sponsors, – defence contractors Lockheed Martin and Thales – who profit from that advice, nor presumably for Australian Intelligence agencies and their overseers in the government.

Back in May, and only weeks after the latest US/UK/French missile attack on Syria, I visited Damascus with my partner, and was able to verify the essential truth of reports from Syrian sources on the situation there, both in regard to the recent campaign to liberate Eastern Ghouta from armed militants, and more generally through personal contact with Syrians.

What we found however was both surprising and heartening; here was a country full of hope and passion, finally celebrating its imminent victory against one of the vilest and most devious enemies in history, led and supported by the most powerful and determined regimes in the world, including our own. Despite the harrowing cost to Syrian society, with over 80,000 regular Syrian soldiers killed, the people were strengthened and united behind their defence forces and their President.

In the seemingly endless fight against foreign-backed and foreign-armed insurgents, every Syrian now has a friend, relative or partner who has “died for his country”, killed, injured or tortured by these “barbarian invaders”. Even in Damascus an estimated 11,000 innocent people have been killed by “rebel” mortars and sniper fire from nearby suburbs.

Visiting a Government camp for the displaced residents of those same rebel-occupied Eastern suburbs of Damascus – Eastern Ghouta – brought home to us what this really means. The people sheltered and fed there – 15,000 in mid-May – had many stories to tell of the years they were held under siege in their communities by the violent militants of Jaish al Islam and Faylaq al Rahman, as well as of the behaviour of the so-called “White Helmets” who worked hand in hand with these terrorist groups. My colleague Vanessa Beeley, who visited the same camp a week earlier and conducted many interviews with Douma and Hamouriya residents has written comprehensively on their experiences; alone her report utterly condemns and exposes the lies and misinformation to which Australian and Western audiences have been subject on the “siege of Eastern Ghouta” and its denouement in the criminal Douma “gas attack” provocation.

Beeley had already exposed the incriminating truth of the previous US alliance campaign over East Aleppo, and the cooperation between the US/UK supported White Helmets and Al Qaeda that effectively prevented the city’s liberation for months in 2016.

It was likely at that point that Russia concluded that the US administration was “non-agreement-capable”, – a situation little altered by the subsequent change of US leadership. Progress towards a resolution of the conflict – in Astana – was then only made because the US was excluded, along with those Opposition groups that refused any compromise with the Assad government.

It is the nature of these Opposition groups, still supported by Western powers including Australia as some legitimate alternative to Syrians’ choice of government, which continues to elude most Western commentators. These groups were cultivated primarily by the Saudis, and reflect their extremist Wahhabi vision of ideal government as well as being associated with the worst terrorist groups operating in Syria. Had he not suffered a timely demise at the hands of Syrian security forces, the notorious terrorist and former leader of Jaish al Islam Zahran Alloush would have been in the running for Syria’s new leadership.

It is in this context that we ask “what if?” the Syrian government had been forcibly replaced by one of the West’s choosing; it belies both the intentions and the actions of the NATO – Saudi – Gulf state coalition, who ploughed billions in arms and support to these very immoderate groups to achieve their own objectives – which had nothing whatsoever to do with “humanitarian intervention” or “democratic reforms”.

By contrast, what actually happened in Syria, and in the main stronghold of Jaish al Islam in Douma, was all too easy to see on the ground. Our visit to Douma hospital, scene of the White Helmets’ most recent criminal fabrication, proved shocking even with what we already knew about the situation. Their claims of a chemical weapon attack, and staged “water-hosing” treatment for its alleged victims in the hospital’s emergency ward, continue to be endorsed by Western commentators like Thakur as well as governments, NGOs and the UN, despite being comprehensively exposed as false.

This remains the case even following the testimony of supposed gas victims seen in the staged video, brought to the Hague by Russia, and the findings of the OPCW showing no presence of chemical weapons residues at the site.

Many commentators have evidently now become impregnable bastions of the false Syrian chemical weapons narrative spread by their governments; in a previous article while discussing the Khan Shaikoun “gas attack” a year earlier, Ramesh Thakur quite wrongly concludes that the Syrian government was proven responsible.

While he cites the UNHRC and the UN-OPCW “evidence” as endorsement of this position, both bodies actually relied on second hand information from Opposition sources only, and refused Syria’s invitation to visit and inspect the Shayrat airbase from which they claimed the chemical weapons had come. Their duplicity was exposed when the US coalition sought to reinforce the mandate for the JIM at the Security Council over the Douma incident; Russia rightly vetoed this clearly disingenuous proposal.

In fact there was nothing for such a commission to investigate in Douma, as Russian and Syrian investigators had already found no toxic chemicals at the alleged site, and hospital staff denied knowledge of any such attack. But what proved really shocking to see at Douma hospital was the sophistication and extent of the tunnel system built beneath it. Canadian investigative journalist Eva Bartlett, who visited Douma just before we did, posted this article that includes video of her exploration of this extraordinary tunnel system, as well as corroborating interviews about the fabricated chemical weapons stories from many residents. The tunnel network not only allowed the armed militants of Jaish al Islam and Al Qaeda – along with their White Helmeted “partners” – to enter and take over the hospital whenever they wished, but protected them from Syrian and Russian bombs.

The belief amongst Syrians that these jihadist/terrorist groups were being assisted by foreign Special Forces, not just in constructing and equipping the tunnel system but in directing and coordinating the “underground resistance” was confirmed during the final evacuation of the Douma “jihadists” on buses to Northern Syria; special forces from Britain, Turkey and other countries were reportedly apprehended trying to escape with them. The MOD naturally denied this collusion, but events in Southern Syria last month, when hundreds of foreign fighters and White Helmets were “rescued” by their closest local ally Israel, seem to confirm and reinforce the Russian and Syrian claims.

While the Syrian people are remarkably forgiving, and focused on recovery and reconciliation within their own territory, few would not now lay blame for the death and devastation inflicted on the fabric of their society at the feet of the US-led coalition – of which Australia has been an integral part. Responsibility for the countless atrocities committed by the hundreds of violent sectarian militias, including Al Qaeda and Da’esh/Islamic State, lies squarely with those countries who conspired to assist them with rivers of weaponry and a tide of propaganda, like – in Trump’s words – “the world has never seen”; this was a conspiracy that began long before the “uprising” of March 2011.

Those who ignore the Syrian reality – that stares in the face of those who deign to look – and so allow this mountain of lies to remain even as another Western regime-change scheme gets under way, should also now prepare their defence; ignorance can no longer be an excuse.


David Macilwain is an independent observer and writer with a special focus on the war on Syria and its allies. He writes voluntarily for Russia Insider and the American Herald Tribune, from his home in the hills of NE Victoria. He visited Syria in May independently and at his own expense.


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READ MORE WHITE HELMETS NEWS AT: 21st Century Wire White Helmets Files

READ MORE SYRIA NEWS AT: 21st Century Wire Syria Files




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