In the wake of the alleged sarin attack by Bashar al-Assad’s government and the cruise missile strike on a Syrian air base by the U.S., we examine some of the relevant issues in the crisis, including and especially intelligence evaluations sharply divergent from the official version:
a). We begin with analysis of the area (Idlib) where the alleged Syrian government sarin attack took place. It is dominated by the Al-Nusra Front, the name given to Al-Qaeda in Iraq when it operates in Syria. Note that the top cleric in the Al-Qaeda held area is Abdullah Muhaysini, a Saudi cleric: ” . . . . who was a student  of Sulayman Al-Alwan, the Wahhabi cleric who oversaw what his Muslim critics have called a ‘terrorist factory ’ in Saudi Arabia’s Al-Qassim Province. Al-Alwan was also the instructor of the 9/11 hijacker Abdulaziz Alomari. . . .”
b.) Saddam and bin Laden worked out an arrangement in which Iraq—in order to provide for a payback capability if the U.S. ousted him—gave information about WMD’s to bin Laden’s people. Al Qaeda, in turn, was to act as a back-up unit for Saddam’s Iraq, striking at the United States if it knocked out Saddam. ” . . . . According to Arab sources, in anticipation of a foreseeable reversal of alliances in Kabul, bin Laden had been in discreet contact since September 2000 with associates of Oudai Hussein. . . . Bin Laden and the Iraqis are said to have exchanged information about chemical and biological weapons, despite the opposition of some of the Baghdad leadership, including Tarik Aziz. . . .”
c). Robert Parry notes in Consortium News that elements in the U.S. intelligence community do not agree with the Trump administration’s assessment of the situation. ” . . . . Alarm within the U.S. intelligence community about Trump’s hasty decision to attack Syria reverberated from the Middle East back to Washington, where former CIA officer Philip Giraldi reported hearing from his intelligence contacts in the field that they were shocked at how the new poison-gas story was being distorted by Trump and the mainstream U.S. news media. Giraldi told Scott Horton’s Webcast: ‘I’m hearing from sources on the ground in the Middle East, people who are intimately familiar with the intelligence that is available who are saying that the essential narrative that we’re all hearing about the Syrian government or the Russians using chemical weapons on innocent civilians is a sham.’ . . .”
d.) Parry also notes that some analysts are reporting a strike by a drone launched from a joint Saudi-Israeli base that supports Syrian rebels. ” . . . Despite some technical difficulties in tracing its flight path, analysts eventually came to believe that the flight was launched in Jordan from a Saudi-Israeli special operations base for supporting Syrian rebels, the source said, adding that the suspected reason for the poison gas was to create an incident that would reverse the Trump administration’s announcement in late March that it was no longer seeking the removal of President Bashar al-Assad. . . .”
e.) Parry concludes one of his articles with a scathing analysis of the Trump administration’s claims by a MIT researcher: ” . . . . In a separate analysis of the four-page dossier, Theodore Postol, a national security specialist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, concluded that the White House claims were clearly bogus, writing: ‘I have reviewed the document carefully, and I believe it can be shown, without doubt, that the document does not provide any evidence whatsoever that the US government has concrete knowledge that the government of Syria was the source of the chemical attack in Khan Shaykhun, Syria at roughly 6 to 7 a.m. on April 4, 2017. In fact, a main piece of evidence that is cited in the document points to an attack that was executed by individuals on the ground, not from an aircraft, on the morning of April 4. This conclusion is based on an assumption made by the White House when it cited the source of the sarin release and the photographs of that source. My own assessment, is that the source was very likely tampered with or staged, so no serious conclusion could be made from the photographs cited by the White House.’ . . . ”
f.) Detailed analysis of an August, 2013 sarin attack, originally thought to have been perpetrated by Bashar Al-Assad, was presented by Seymour Hersh in the London Review of Books. The sarin turns out not to have come from Syrian government stockpiles. “. . . . Obama’s change of mind had its origins at Porton Down, the defence laboratory in Wiltshire. British intelligence had obtained a sample of the sarin used in the 21 August attack and analysis demonstrated that the gas used didn’t match the batches known to exist in the Syrian army’s chemical weapons arsenal. The message that the case against Syria wouldn’t hold up was quickly relayed to the US joint chiefs of staff. . . .”
g.) Al-Nusra (Al-Qaeda), on the other hand, was producing Sarin and looking to ramp up production through a supply pipeline running through Turkey. ” . . . . The American and British intelligence communities had been aware since the spring of 2013 that some rebel units in Syria were developing chemical weapons. On 20 June analysts for the US Defense Intelligence Agency issued a highly classified five-page ‘talking points’ briefing for the DIA’s deputy director, David Shedd, which stated that al-Nusra maintained a sarin production cell: its programme, the paper said, was ‘the most advanced sarin plot since al-Qaida’s pre-9/11 effort’. . . .”
h.) The 2013 conclusions of general Martin Dempsey are worth examining in the context of the current crisis: ” . . . . From the beginning of the crisis, the former intelligence official said, the joint chiefs had been skeptical of the administration’s argument that it had the facts to back up its belief in Assad’s guilt. They pressed the DIA and other agencies for more substantial evidence. ‘There was no way they thought Syria would use nerve gas at that stage, because Assad was winning the war,’ the former intelligence official said. . . .”
Program Highlights Include:
1. Review of the corporatist economic foundation of Muslim Brotherhood developmental theory. “. . . . The Muslim Brotherhood hails 14th century philosopher Ibn Khaldun as its economic guide. Anticipating supply-side economics, Khaldun argued that cutting taxes raises production and tax revenues . . . The World Bank has called Ibn Khaldun the first advocate of privatization. . . .”
2. Review of Graham E. Fuller’s support for the economic values of the Muslim Brotherhood and his strange support for Bernie Sanders, whose values are the opposite of those espoused by Fuller.
3. The fact that war in the Middle East raises oil prices–this to be seen against the background of Rex Tillerson being Secretary of State (previously CEO of Exxon/Mobil). ” . . . . For investors like Mr. Abdullah, conflict in the Middle East means one thing: higher oil prices. ‘It’s always good for us,’ he says. . . .”
4. Robert Parry’s view that the omission of CIA director Mike Pompeo and other top U.S. intelligence officials from a photo of Trump’s top advisors is indicative of dissent within the intelligence community from the official version of the attack.
Analyzing the possibility that American use of Muslim Brotherhood Islamists as proxy warriors and armed heralds of corporatist free-market economic values might backfire on the United States, we look at the development of ISIS, the curious Turkish about-face on the Fetullah Gulen organization and fallout from the so-called “Arab Spring.” Beginning with discussion of a “doomsday” contingency plan concocted by al-Qaeda and Saddam Hussein to back each other up militarily in the event either or both were overthrown by the U.S., we examine the prominent role of former members of Saddam’s officer corps in administering ISIS. ISIS and al-Qaeda are holding forth in Libya, which is serving as a base for spreading their operations into Africa. Like the bloody Syrian civil war, the overthrow of Khadafy (which set the stage for the Islamist presence in Libya) is an outgrowth of the so-called “Arab Spring”–one of the “conga-line ops” we highlighted in FTR #885. Much of the program highlights the operations of the Fetullah Gulen organization in Turkey. Alleged to be a CIA front organization and Islamic extremist in nature, the Gulen organization was formerly an ally of Tayyip Erdogan. Now, it is among his most bitter opponents. Program Highlights Include: review of Hitler’s view that Islamists were a crucial Third Reich ally; review of a critical meeting in Switzerland at which prominent Euro-fascists and al-Taqwa director Ahmed Huber met; speculation that the Swiss “Euro-fascist” summit may have helped generate the intelligence disinformation that helped lure the Bush administration into the ill-advised Iraq war; “ex” CIA officer Graham Fuller’s ridicule of the allegation that the Gulen organization is a CIA front organization; the close connections between Erdogan’s AKP Party, Germany and the EU.
With the political firestorm generated by the GOP over the Benghazi attack in 2012, it is certainly interesting and possibly very relevant to note that the C.I.A. base chief ordered five commandos guarding the base to stand down, thereby enabling the lethal violence that claimed the life of the American ambassador to Libya. One wonders if the delay was in fact to precipitate the lethal debacle being utilized by the Republicans in their anti-Clinton, anti-Obama propaganda?
With another anniversary of the 9/11 attacks having passed, it is interesting to contemplate the ongoing damage from the unlearned lessons concerning those attacks. Before discussing ongoing support for Caucasian and Chechen jihadist elements by elements of U.S., Western and Saudi intelligence, the program highlights the bogus intelligence about a supposed “Russian invasion” of Ukraine that does not appear to have occurred at all. Much of the supposed intelligence on this “invasion” comes from satellite photos, showing what are supposed to be Russian armored and artillery elements in Ukraine. These photos are NOT from U.S. reconnaissance satellites, but come from a private company–DigitalGlobe. Founded by veterans of Ronald Reagan’s “Star Wars” program (The Strategic Defense Initiative), the company’s executives have CV’s involving work for Bain (Mitt Romney’s firm) and IHS, the Thyssen/Bornemisza group firm that is the epicenter of the Peak Oil doctrine. Accessing archival information about support for Chechen Islamists by elements of U.S., Western and Saudi intelligence, the program notes the involvement of Ukrainian fascists from the UNA/UNSO organization in Chechnya and the Caucasus. The reported combat expertise of ISIS is said by some analysts to have evolved from the participation in that group of Chechen veterans, making our slippery slope involvement against the group blowback–to an extent–from the West’s proxy warriors in the Caucasus. As was the case in Afghanistan–where the U.S. fought a bloody, indecisive war against jihadists crafted to fight against the U.S.S.R. and subsequently Russia–we once again find American military forces engaged against jihadists being used as proxy warriors by elements of the transnational corporate elite and allied national security elements. The program concludes with a closer look at the historical background to some recent propaganda in the New York Times’ op-ed page, ascribing Russian responsibility to the 1999 assassinations of Armenian political leaders by the Dashnags, an Armenian nationalist group with longstanding historical links to Ukrainian fascists and other elements of international fascism and the Underground Reich.
Continuing our ongoing coverage of the Ukrainian crisis, the program begins with an examination of the continuity of the OUN/B Third Reich collaborationist milieu through the decades. The “new” President Petro Poroshenko is advised by a team of political vetarns, including Roman Zvarych (“Svarych”), the personal secretary to OUN/B head Jaroslav Stetsko and a right-hand man to his widow and successor Slava Stetsko. Svarych served as Minister of Justice in both Tymnoshenko governments, as well as under Viktor Yuschenko. The Congress of Ukrainian Nationalists, co-founded by Slava Stetsko and Zvarych, has served as a central element in Ukrainian political coalitions, embodying the continuity of the OUN/B throughout the short history of post-Soviet Ukraine. In addition to retaining Swoboda’s Andriy Parubiy as Ukraine’s top defense official, Poroshenko is implementing the EU austerity doctrine, continuing the brutal civil war and opening up Ukraine to German investment. The U.S. and EU are endorsing fracking and fossil fuel production to sabotage the Russian economy and President Putin’s government.
We have noted in posts and programs that Ukraine has 25% of the world’s proven natural gas reserves. The Eastern part of the country is richer in natural gas than the West. Exemplifying the very crony capitalism that the U.S. decries when it occurs elsewhere (including Russia), Burisma–a Cyprus-based company with significant investments in Ukrainian natural gas fields –has hired Vice President Joe Biden’s son R. Hunter Biden. The company’s board of directors features Devon Archer, the former college roommate of Secretary of State John Kerry’s Stepson Christopher Heinz (of the wealthy food-empire family.) In addition, Ukraine has issued $1 billion bonds, backed by the U.S. taxpayer.
Several Swoboda parliamentary deputies roughed up the director of the largest state TV station in Ukraine and forced his resignation–this because he broadcast excerpts of Putin’s speech about the annexation of Crimea. The assault was led by Ihor Miroshnychenko, the Deputy Chair of the parliamentary Committee on Freedom of Speech and Information! Like the U.S. media, the German media have been systematically misrepresenting Swoboda as something other than the fascist organization it clearly is. Much of the program deals with the nature of the so-called democratic opposition in Russia, about which we’ve heard so much caterwauling of late. In particular, the program highlights the true political cache of Alexei Navalny, recently featured as an op-ed writer in The New York Times.
In the aftermath of the Ukraine coup, wanted posters for former president Yanukovich sprang up all over that country and were liberally distributed in the media. QUICK: If you were going to craft and distribute wanted posters in the United States, would you have the text in Ukrainian?
A factor that is central to the Ukrainian situation is that country’s natural gas reserves. The Ukraine has a quarter of the world’s proven natural gas reserves. Those reserves may well be seen as the answer to the EU’s energy situation. We wonder if the Fischer-Tropsch process might be used to derive motor fuel from that natural gas, as is being done in the Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated nation of Qatar.
Many of the same elements that figured in the failed investigation into the 9/11 attacks crop up in connection with the Boston Marathon bombing, as well. In addition to intelligence elements linked to the GOP/Petroleum/Underground Reich element of the intelligence community, there are indications that the accused bombers may have been indoctrinated with domestic fascist ideology. An apparent terrorist attack on a PG & E power subsation at the same time may indicate that the “leaderless resistance” strategy is being manifested here.