Syria’s White Helmets have been boosted by the West as a trusted humanitarian organization, but their origins and motives remain murky. Now, the White Helmets effort appears to be spreading to other countries, Caitlin Johnstone notes.
By Caitlin Johnstone
I sat down with my coffee this beautiful Australian morning to watch two of my favorite independent media figures jam together in a Corbett Report interview of renowned independent investigative journalist Vanessa Beeley. About two-thirds of the way through, I nearly fell out of my chair.
At 24:30 of the clip, the following bone-chilling conversation takes place about the nature of the establishment media’s aggressive protection of the highly publicized “Syrian Civil Defense,” also known as the White Helmets.
Beeley: But I think what is interesting, why is this organization being protected to such an extent? I think it’s because the imperialist apparatus is defending the concept. We’ve already seen [White Helmets founder] James Le Mesurier recruiting in Brazil. We know that the White Helmets have appeared in Malaysia and in Venezuela, and in the Philippines. So you know, because this went through my head so many times, these are only 3,000 criminals and thugs that have emerged from the terrorist ranks or the “Free Syrian Army” [air quotes] moderate extremist ranks to become the White Helmets in order to continue to get paid doing the same job but under a different auspice.
Why are they being so heavily protected? But I think it’s more to do with the concept. It’s more to do with the importance of this concept going forward. As James Le Mesurier said very recently, who would you trust more than the fire brigade or a first response NGO? There you have it. That’s the key to why this group is so important.
James Corbett: It is the perfect cover. And it certainly is a template that I’m sure will be used over and over in these types of situations if they can get away with it. So, extremely important.
Extremely important indeed. The White Helmets are a war propaganda firm with extensive ties to both lucrative western financial backing and known terrorist factions, and the notion of this organization branching out into other potential targets of the U.S.-centralized war machine is absolutely horrifying.
We already see the White Helmets cited constantly by Western mass media in every allegation against the government of Bashar al- Assad, as in this article courtesy of Associated Press and the Washington Post using the “Syrian Civil Defense” as their source for a report on an alleged chemical weapons attack in the Idlib province, referring to them in the header as “Syrian activists.”
The mainstream media promotes everything this organization says as fact and does everything they can to protect and promote the White Helmets’ reputation, meaning that if they spread throughout the world, war propaganda can be manufactured from the inside against any government the empire wishes to target with its armies of extremist “freedom fighters.”
In response to this jarring new information I reached out to Vanessa Beeley to make sure I was understanding this properly, and she provided the following statement:
The White Helmets franchise is a terrifying extension of soft power infiltration deep inside target nations, exploiting trust, vulnerability and poverty with the “First Responder” construct that “everyone trusts” as James Le Mesurier so clearly stated in a recent interview in Brazil. This pseudo Humanitarian, NATO state-sanctioned fist will be used to crush many more nations in the future if it is not stopped in Syria. Just as Syria has contained the terrorist fire within its borders, so has it exposed the White Helmets as the terrorist alter ego, but for how long will both be contained? Terrorism is fanning out into Europe via the EU funded Turkish exit routes, the White Helmets are also establishing themselves further afield, in Venezuela, Malaysia, the Philippines to name a few. Terrorism and the White Helmets march in lock-step and can only be stopped by confronting the cancerous cultures in which they are cultivated?—?US Necolonialism, British Imperialism, EU Globalism, Gulf State Extremism & Israeli Parasitism.
Ouch. Okay. I was really hoping I’d misunderstood.
I cannot overemphasize how dangerous this is. The West is already saturated in deceitful war propaganda about Syria, as shown irrefutably in cases like the Bana Alabed CNN interview and the BBC’s Saving Syria’s Children footage, and this has largely been made possible by the mass media’s collaboration with the White Helmets.
Putting them in places like Venezuela, a regular target of imperialist manipulations with the largest oil reserves in in the world, or the Philippines, a major longtime U.S. military asset where a Duterte pivot away from Washington toward Beijing could get very ugly, would give the US war machine the ability to legitimize any allegation against those governments if it decides it’s time for aggressive regime change. The organization’s own website (archived here in case they change it) asserts that it is “currently assessing opportunities for implementation of Civil Defence-based stabilisation programmes in other countries in the Middle East, including Yemen and Iraq.”
Yesterday The Guardian, which has surely become the overall most aggressive promoter of Western war propaganda on the planet, ran an article titled (I swear I am not making this up) “‘Russia wants to hack the Oscars’: smear campaign targets Syrian nominee.” It was authored by Olivia Solon, the same Guardian writer who, without ever having been to Syria or having any Middle East reporting experience whatsoever, wrote an extremely deceptive smear piece on Beeley and other reporters who’ve been contradicting the establishment narrative about the White Helmets. The new article alleges that Russia is running a conspiratorial campaign to prevent yet another pro-White Helmets documentary from receiving yet another Academy Award.
Beeley picks apart this new film “The Last Men In Aleppo” and the ongoing trend of establishment media elevating such documentaries in this excellent article here, so there’s no need for me to get into why Olivia Solon’s latest war propaganda piece is just as ridiculous as her first, but it’s important to note how ferociously these establishment outlets are protecting the White Helmets. How weird is that? Where else do you see war zone search and rescue teams being made into glamorous media superstars with cute matching uniforms? Who are aggressively protected from counter-narratives by stalwart establishment outlets?
James Le Mesurier is a British private security specialist and a former British military intelligence officer. He knows how to construct a psy-op. He’s trying to franchise his war propaganda firm worldwide, where it will be used to manufacture pro-regime change narratives and will be aggressively defended and promoted by the establishment media, and its allegations against disobedient governments and factions will be reported as fact by western newscasters and pundits.
It’s a brilliant scheme, and it may become the future of war propaganda if we can’t shed enough light on it in time.
Caitlin Johnstone is a rogue journalist, poet, and utopia prepper who publishes regularly at Medium. Follow her work on Facebook, Twitter, or her website. She has a podcast and a new book Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers.