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Eric Zuesse — Strategic Culture Sept 4, 2018

On Friday, August 31st, the neoconservative US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said “The 3 million Syrians who have already been forced out of their homes and are now in #Idlib, will suffer from this aggression. Not good. The world is watching.”

By “this aggression,” he was referring to the completion, by the Syrian Government and its allies Russia and Hezbollah, of their elimination of jihadist terrorists from Syria. Pompeo’s remark was a veiled threat, especially to Russia, not to intervene in the US-led invasion of Syria, which Pompeo and his boss, US President Donald Trump, and the US ‘Defense’ Department, have planned, in continuation of the policies of aggression against Syria, by the prior US President, Barack Obama, and by his Administration — their policies to protect and train and arm those terrorists, so as to overthrow and replace Syria’s Government.

Pompeo, as a politician, can say things like that — pontificate ‘morality’, to the portion of the world that’s deceived by their national ‘news’-media to believe the opposite of what is about to be documented here. He can do it only because of what the US-and-allied ‘news’-media have assiduously kept hidden from their respective publics. The Syrian people blame US — not Assad — for the ‘civil war’ there, which they know actually has been a US-Saud-led invasion of Syria, an invasion and military occupation so as to overthrow Syria’s Government, and to replace it by the Saudis’ s‘elected’ stooges.

So that the publics in the US and its allied countries can know the truth here, they must be informed, finally, of truths hidden by the media, truths such as these:

For years, Syria’s Government has been liberating increasing numbers of cities and towns and villages, from the approximately one hundred thousand jihadists that have been fighting in Syria to overthrow and replace their Government. Those jihadists have been supported by the US Government in this overthrow-effort. Most of the jihadists were recruited into Syria as fundamentalist-Islamic (actually fundamentalist-Sunni-Islamic) mercenaries, by the US coalition, which have worked with Al Qaeda’s Syrian branch to train and arm these jihadists, for them to serve as the US coalition’s boots-on-the-ground, to overthrow Syria’s non-sectarian Government. The US coalition aim to install in Syria rulers who have been selected by the fundamentalist-Sunni Saud family, the world’s wealthiest family, who own Saudi Arabia, and who want to control also Syria.

Tens of thousands of jihadists have surrendered to the Syrian Government and been bussed by the Government into Idlib Syria — those were the surviving jihadists who chose surrender and relocation to Idlib, instead of immediate death at the hands of the Syrian Government, and of its allies, Russia and Hezbollah.

Ever since the start of the Syrian Government’s operation to transport surviving jihadists to Idlib, there has been a question as to what would be done with them: either to free them to go back to their home countries or to any country that will take them, or else to slaughter them. The expectation has increasingly become that they will be slaughtered, because no peaceable land wants them, and because even the US and its allies say that they want to kill all jihadists. America’s Islamic allies, such as the royal Saud family, say that jihadists need to be educated to convert away from jihad, but everyone knows that with only rare exceptions, that’s impossible to do — and the countries that claim to be doing it are secretly funding jihadists such as Al Qaeda abroad.

There is evidence that most Syrians want the jihadists to be slaughtered. The British polling firm Orb International’s 2014 Syrian poll asked “Q5. Who do you feel best represents the interests and aspirations of the Syrian people?” The top two most-favored choices were: “The Assad Government” 35%, and “Political Opposition” 21%. Both of those are secular, not sectarian. All of the armed groups who were trying to overthrow Assad wanted Sharia law, and they were supported by only 27% of Syrians, but they were supported and armed and trained by all of the US international coalition.

A year later, Orb polled again, and found (“Table 3”) that 47% of Syrians in 2015 said that Assad had a “positive effect” on the country; 43% said Iran did; 37% said “Arab Gulf Countries” (the US Government’s allied nations against Syria) did; 36% said “Free Syrian Army” (America’s proxies or boots-on-the-ground fighters in Syria) did; 35% said “Nusra Front” (Al Qaeda in Syria, which trained and led the Free Syrian Army) did; 26% said the “Syrian Opposition Coalition” (America’s other proxy fighters to overthrow Assad) did; and 21% said “Islamic State” (ISIS or ISIL, or simply “IS”) did. 76% said IS had a “negative effect” on Syria. IS was hated by Syrians, but apparently not as much as US was hated by them: When Syrians were asked “to explain the presence of ISIL in Iraq/Syria” 82% answered (Table 26) that the explanation “is US.” Syrians might not have agreed on whom they supported, but they agreed overwhelmingly that America was their nation’s enemy. And it is. Syrians don’t want to be ruled by stooges selected for them by the Saudis. But that’s whom the US coalition lined up to rule them. Except that Russia decided not to accept it. And now Pompeo is warning Russia (which is legally in Syria at the request of the Government, while the US itself is only an invading power there) to give up and let Syria be conquered by America’s proxies.

Furthermore, the 2015 Orb poll (Table 4) also found that Idlib was the region of Syria which had the lowest percentage of its inhabitants (only 4% — versus 47% in the nation-at-large) supporting Assad. Table 6 there shows that 35% of Idlib’s residents supported ISIS. Table 7 shows that 70% of Idlib’s residents supported Nusra (Al Qaeda in Syria). So: when Assad made the decision to relocate surrendered jihadists to Idlib, he knew that he was sending them to the Governorate that’s far more supportive of the jihadist cause than any other area of Syria is. Only a tiny portion of Idlib’s residents oppose jihadists. And, now, suddenly, to America’s Mike Pompeo, all of the people in Idlib are somehow (as he suggests, but is sly enough not to state outright) refugees.

Orb’s 2018 poll of Syrians reported that “Only 26% think that the influence of the International Coalition has been positive, and 69% think their influence has been somewhat or strongly negative. A further 57% think The West has played a negative role.” Orb, the pollster — since it’s allied with the US instead of with Syria — also blamed Assad, instead of blaming Trump, for the worsening situation their latest poll found in Syria. Orb’s 2018 report says: “Whether or not an Assad victory is good for the future of the country is wide open — Although 39% agree that the country is heading in the right direction, this is a large drop since 2017 when 57% agreed with this statement.” Between 2017 and now, most Syrians, just like most Americans, became disillusioned that Trump really was going to let Syria win the war that the US Government has been waging against Syria ever since 1949 and which exploded into the open once Obama came into the White House. During the past year, it has become increasingly clear that Trump is continuing and even escalating this war; so, of course, Syrians, who know that the US is their enemy, don’t think “that the country is heading in the right direction.” Like Americans, the people in Syria had believed Trump’s lies about what his intentions regarding Syria were. They know better now.

Furthermore: Pompeo’s allegation that “The 3 million Syrians who have already been forced out of their homes and are now in #Idlib,” is itself blatantly false, because the population of the entire region — and not just of the city of Idlib — is only 1.5 million, and far fewer than 100,000 have been added to that population by Syria’s bussing all of the surrendered jihadists there.

Furthermore, as of January 2017, there have been, Since 2011, … 1 million new Syrian refugees added to the worldwide refugee total, throughout that 7-year period of the Syrian ‘civil war’. And the perhaps ten thousand surviving and surrendered jihadists who have been bussed and added to the 1.5 million total population of Idlib Governorate, are surviving members of the cause of that refugee-crisis; they’re certainly not themselves refugees, such as Pompeo slyly has implied. They are instead surrendered combatants.

So: only deeply fooled people would trust anything that a leader of the US Government says. Lies by them are so routine.

Therefore, to report or publicize their lies without at the same time documenting that they are lies — such as the present article does — is not merely propaganda instead of being actual news-reporting; it is propaganda to aid and assist the US Government’s evil there.

The vast majority of Syrians consider America and its allies to be their enemies, but Pompeo can pompously pretend to be their defenders even while he is actually threatening them and their defenders; and he can perpetrate such lies only because of The West’s lying ‘news’-media, which constantly feed those same lies to their publics.

For example, on August 30th, columnist David Ignatius headlined in the solidly neoconservative Washington Post, How to stanch Syria’s bloody final showdown and bloviated,

President Trump’s personal commitment to Syria is unclear, given his frequent past comments that America’s role there should be limited to fighting terrorists. …

This 11th-hour rediscovery of Syria is poignant, because it comes as America is mourning the death of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), who anguished in his final years about the United States’ inability to check the slaughter there. …

The administration has signaled a stiffer stance by warning Russia against its planned escalation in Idlib, which Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov described Wednesday as “a festering abscess” that must be “liquidated.” …

Idlib, located in the northwest corner of Syria, has become a haven for terrorists, anti-regime fighters and desperate civilians who fled there after the fall of Aleppo and Daraa. The province’s population is now about 3 million.

That “3 million” there links to this on August 29th, which says, “According to news reports, the three million people – roughly half of whom are native residents and the other half persons displaced within the country – of Idlib, the last big rebel enclave, are bracing for Syrian Government forces to begin a phased offensive.” So, at least Pompeo could cite “news reports” as ‘confirmation’ for his lie. It’s a house-of-mirrors, which the US Government and its many minions have produced.

Perhaps among those “news reports” was one from the solidly neocon Financial Times, on 4 May 2018, Idlib offers uncertain sanctuary to Syria’s defeated rebels, in which, apparently, only persons who were part of the US coalition were interviewed as sources:

”Your choice was die in Ghouta, or leave for Idlib,” said the 35-year-old from his new home in a village in the province [Idlib] …

He is one of more than 70,000 rebels and civilians who made a similar calculation, fleeing the besieged enclave [Eastern Ghouta]. …

Idlib … has become a dumping ground for defeated rebels, their families and supporters. …

Idlib’s population has swelled from about 1.5m before the war to 2.6m, making it the largest populous area controlled by rebels. …

That ‘news’paper likewise failed to source its number in any empirical data. And, of course, the Al Qaeda and ISIS forces who were among those “rebels” weren’t being labelled as “terrorists,” nor even as “jihadists”: they were instead ‘rebels’, even if they had come from a foreign country to fight to overthrow the Government of Syria. This is Western ‘journalism’ — it’s not being honestly called Western “propaganda.” People actually pay for that filth as ‘journalism’. Even the term ‘journalism’ is fake, for propaganda, which is what actually reigns, in US-allied territories.

On 16 May 2018, the UN’s chief person on the Syria matter, Staffan de Mistura, told the Security Council that “If we see a Ghouta scenario in Idlib, this could be six times worse, affecting 2.3 million people,” and this likewise-undocumented estimate would mean that since 2011 there has been an influx into Idlib of 800,000 people from other governorates in Syria, who have chosen Syria’s by-far-most-jihadist Governate, as the place they prefer to live. That estimate, of 800,000 increase, is credible, but (like the others) undocumented. In any case: still, the total population of Idlib would likely be considerably more than 90% pro-jihad. Why does The West specialize in defending such people, against the vast majority of Syrians, who have suffered so much from them? In some places, freedom-from-religion is more needed than freedom-of-religion.

Donald Trump has prohibited any refugees from Syria into America. If he is so solicitous about the welfare of the residents in Idlib, why doesn’t he make an exception for them, and simply inform Russia that America will now allow all of the residents in Idlib to enter the US as ‘refugees’? Would he rather start World War III against Russia, in order to try protecting everyone in Idlib, where they are? He even wants Armageddon, if that’s the only way for him to protect everyone in Idlib? And yet, he doesn’t give a damn about the Palestinians? Obviously, the official stories are lies.

Who would have thought, on September 11th of 2001, that within just ten years, the CIA-stirred ‘Arab Spring’ could be started, and that just a year later the US Government would already commit itself to Syria’s Al Qaeda as the local Syrian group that would be chosen by the US to serve as the trainer and leader of America’s main proxy-forces fighting on the ground in Syria to bring down the only non-sectarian Government in the entire Middle East: Syria’s Government? Perhaps a person who knew that the Saudis and the White House were behind the 9/11 attacks would have thought it, but the US-allied ‘news’-media have hidden that fact, too.

Of course, there is the possibility that a million or more Syrians have fled the war into the relative safety (for themselves) of Idlib — safety (for them) if and only if they supported the jihadists, because that’s the province which overwhelmingly supported jihadists, even before the ‘civil war’ had started. But lying ‘news’-media don’t really care about such fine points, anyway, since those would only confuse their readers with truth. Mustn’t do that — not if the ‘news’-medium is actually just propaganda. The demand, in The West, is: “Don’t confuse the reader!” (such as would happen if the lies were exposed instead of touted, or — which is even worse — hidden altogether).

Once, the Secretary-General of the United Nations contradicted the US President twice in one day for his having said that Bashar al-Assad must not be allowed to remain in office. Barack Obama was the US President, the putative dictator-of-the-world, at that time. Now Donald Trump stole the White House by promising voters he would abandon Obama’s international aggressions, and by (as the new President) instead continuing and even intensifying them. By such lies, all significant control that the American public have over their Government has become lost. Thus, even the American people are ignored by the US and its allies — the global alliance for evil.

That alliance’s ‘news’-media have been an essential part of this scam. It could not function, but for them — the aid that they provide in deceiving (instead of informing) their public — the aid at reinforcing the regime’s lies.

A stunningly brilliant exposé of America’s (and its media’s) latest lies about Syria can be found at the September 2nd “Moon of Alabama” article, Syria Sitrep — US To Stay To ‘Create Quagmires’”. Everyone should read it, but it’s found nowhere in All the News That’s Fit to Print (in any of the Establishment’s ‘news’-media) — it’s far too honest and well-documented for that. It documents that the US is adding considerably to its military occupation of Syria, digging in there, for a long and maybe permanent stay. If this intention really is so, WW III can be expected to start, perhaps soon, with Syria being merely the first battlefield in the war that will end all wars (and end everything).

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