Trump Urged to Seek Evidence Before Attacking Syria

In this memo to the White House, the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity urge President Trump to get the evidence first before deciding to strike Syria.

Special to Consortium News


FROM: Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity

SUBJECT:  Evidence Required for Military Decision on Syria

Mr. President,

We the undersigned Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity join a number of other credible experts including former UK Ambassador to Syria, Peter Ford (this recent interview on BBC Radio Scotland), former UN weapons inspectors and former military officers who are strongly recommending that you obtain and review actual evidence from the site of the alleged chemical attack in Douma, Syria, before ordering any military action. VIPS has previously reported credible evidence indicating that anti-government forces in Syria have themselves produced and used toxic chemical agents.

Contradictory indications exist given that the video and images of victims in the locations purportedly affected by chemical weapons  came from rebel-affiliated entities known as the “Douma Revolution” and the “White Helmets” while Russian military units which later got physical access to the supposed sites and Syrian Red Crescent personnel working in the area reportedly found no indication of a chemical weapon attack.

A major question for us, as former intelligence officers with some knowledge of the operational use of misinformation and false flag actions, is what motive would the Syrian government have for making a chemical weapons attack on its own civilian population, especially at a time when it has growing popular support and is having increased military success.  Why would it risk Western ire?

Rebel fighters and their families were already being evacuated to Turkish occupied Jarabulus by air-conditioned bus. As described in more detail by Scott Ritter (here), only Salafist fighters from the “Army of Islam” (Jaish al-Islam) had refused to surrender at the time of the supposed attacks.

One must therefore consider the possibility that the supposed chlorine gas attack at Douma may have been a carefully constructed propaganda fraud. Such a fraud would have as its purpose the elicitation of precisely the kind of political pressure that now has you contemplating military action. In other words, Mr. President, this may be a bid to mousetrap you into a war that neither you nor your fellow Americans want nor need.

More expert opinion and investigation needs to be applied like that voiced by former U.N. weapons inspector in Syria, Åke Sellström, (translated from original Swedish):

 The attack may have come from Assad’s regime, but you may as well have other explanations. Toxic substances can be dispersed in many ways, for example through explosions or smoke.

– There are many poisonous substances in circulation during the battle.

If the UN were to investigate the attack, it is not enough to see recordings or hear testimony, says Sellström.

It is essential that the United States have complete and compelling evidence before taking any decisive action. We therefore strongly recommend that you await the findings of the OPCW team which is now on its way to Douma to investigate at the actual site of the alleged attack.  A competent, objective group of experts needs to conduct a thorough on-the-ground investigation and collect evidence that will either implicate the Government of Syria or exonerate it.

We have, as you have noted, been down this road before with the Iraq WMD debacle in 2003.  Let us not repeat this mistake. By launching a war in Syria, we will be entering a military and political morass involving Iran and Russia that could have fatal consequences for the entire planet, especially if any of the parties feel compelled to resort to nuclear weapons.

The American people neither want nor need another military intervention in the Middle East. History tells us that any initiative centered on the use of armed force to compel acceptable behavior will not be containable and will only propagate more violence. Please do not drain the US Treasury for a war that could lead to catastrophic and unprecedented loss of life and endanger the security of Americans everywhere.

For the Steering Group, Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS)

William Binney, former NSA Technical Director for World Geopolitical & Military Analysis; Co-founder of NSA’s Signals Intelligence Automation Research Center (ret.)

Richard H. Black, Senator of Virginia, 13th District; Colonel US Army (ret.); Former Chief, Criminal Law Division, Office of the Judge Advocate General, the Pentagon (associate VIPS)

Marshall Carter-Tripp, Foreign Service Officer (ret.) and Division Director, State Department Bureau of Intelligence and Research

Kathleen Christison, Senior Analyst on Middle East, CIA (ret.)

Bogdan Dzakovic, former Team Leader of Federal Air Marshals and Red Team, FAA Security (ret.) (associate VIPS)

Graham E. Fuller,Vice-Chair, National Intelligence Council (ret.)

Philip Giraldi, CIA, Operations Officer (ret.)

Mike Gravel, former Adjutant, top secret control officer, Communications Intelligence Service; special agent of the Counter Intelligence Corps and former United States Senator

Matthew Hoh, former Capt., USMC, Iraq & Foreign Service Officer, Afghanistan (associate VIPS)

Larry C. Johnson, former CIA and State Department Counter Terrorism officer

Michael S. Kearns, Captain,Wing Commander, RAAF (ret.); Intelligence Officer & ex-Master SERE Instructor

John Kiriakou, former CIA Counterterrorism Officer and former senior investigator, Senate Foreign Relations Committee

Karen Kwiatkowski, former Lt. Col., US Air Force (ret.), at Office of Secretary of Defense watching the manufacture of lies on Iraq, 2001-2003

Clement J. Laniewski, LTC, USA (ret) (associate VIPS)

Linda Lewis, WMD preparedness policy analyst, USDA (ret.) (associate VIPS)

Edward Loomis, NSA Cryptologic Computer Scientist (ret.)

David MacMichael, Ph.D., former senior estimates officer, National Intelligence Council (ret.)

Ray McGovern, former US Army infantry/intelligence officer & CIA analyst; CIA Presidential briefer (ret.)

Elizabeth Murray, former Deputy National Intelligence Officer for the Near East, National Intelligence Council & CIA political analyst (ret.)

Todd E. Pierce, MAJ, US Army Judge Advocate (ret.)

Scott Ritter, former MAJ., USMC, former UN Weapon Inspector, Iraq

Coleen Rowley, FBI Special Agent and former Minneapolis Division Legal Counsel (ret.)

Peter Van Buren, US Department of State, Foreign Service Officer (ret.) (associate VIPS)

Lawrence Wilkerson, Colonel, US Army (ret.), former Chief of Staff for Secretary of State; Distinguished Visiting Professor, College of William and Mary (associate VIPS)

Sarah G. Wilton, CDR, USNR, (ret.); Defense Intelligence Agency (ret.)

Robert Wing, former Foreign Service Officer (associate VIPS)

Ann Wright, Colonel, US Army (ret.); also Foreign Service Officer who resigned in opposition to the US war on Iraq

83 comments for “Trump Urged to Seek Evidence Before Attacking Syria

  1. April 15, 2018 at 13:55

    People might want to find, watch and listen to the 8,233rd meeting of the United Nations Security Council on Saturday April 14, 2018 – the day after Trump, Macron and May illegally struck Syria. The meeting was historic.

  2. Sovereign Mary
    April 14, 2018 at 14:36

    George Washington: “The constitution vests the power of declaring war in Congress; therefore no offensive expedition of importance can be undertaken until after they shall have deliberated upon the subject and authorized such a measure.” (1793.)
    James Madison – “In the general distribution of powers, we find that of declaring war expressly vested in the congress, where every other legislative power is declared to be vested; and without any other qualification than what is common to every other legislative act. The constitutional idea of this power would seem then clearly to be, that it is of a legislative and not an executive nature…

    “Those who are to conduct a war cannot in the nature of things, be proper or safe judges, whether a war ought to be commenced, continued, or concluded. They are barred from the latter functions by a great principle in free government, analogous to that which separates the sword from the purse, or the power of executing from the power of enacting laws.”

  3. April 14, 2018 at 13:55

    With 24 hours the OPW (weapons team would have been on the scene)…this is an obvious attempt to cover up the evidence, Haartz tells the truth here.

    Teresa May is getting a flurry of critques cuz she didnt go to the Parliment either. Macron is Donald Trump light, he lied to the french never telling them France has 6 bases in secret and we know that because Erdogan published the sites and locations.

    • mike k
      April 14, 2018 at 14:24

      When do war mongers ever need evidence? They just make it up out of their own perverted imaginations.

  4. April 14, 2018 at 02:45

    Your assumption that your president can actually read is debatable. Perhaps a comic book presentation might have more efficacy?

  5. the New Squirel
    April 13, 2018 at 22:43

    The attack on Syria started a few minutes ago: check CCN:

    • Zachary Smith
      April 13, 2018 at 23:04

      Nice link. What Mattis said:

      US Defense Secretary James Mattis told reporters that President Trump is legally authorized to order these Syria strikes — which were ordered without congressional authorization — under Article II of the Constitution.
      It reads in part, “The president shall be Commander-in-Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States.”
      “We believe the president has ever reason to defend vital American interests and that is what he did here tonight under that authority,” Mattis said.

      My reaction: Mattis is a stupid hack.

      • Realist
        April 13, 2018 at 23:40

        My reaction: Trump just added to the body of evidence that he is a war criminal, joining the club that includes both Clintons, Dumbya, Obomber, and Blair. The attack is illegal under international law and under the U.S. constitution. He couldn’t wait to justify his aggression until after the international agency for the control of chemical weapons conducted even a fake investigation of the alleged crime scene. The message, once again, is that the exceptional country does not have to adhere to laws, treaties or civilised behavior. I guess the club also welcomed initiates May and Micron, if Britain and France participated. Cretins! The only “silver lining” is that the attack was “minimal,” did not hit Russian forces and, according to Mattis, is a one-off. Is it possible that the grousing by the small anti-war faction (that would be us), a few scholars, sundry journalists, some retired spooks, Russia itself and one network pundit (Tucker Carlson) actually caused the empire to pull its punches? Or is this just more protracted psy-ops with more shoes yet to fall?

        • elmerfudzie
          April 14, 2018 at 04:52

          Realist, now for the proverbial, morning after, and the “pill” our country must swallow. Vladimir Shamanov, head of State Duma Committee for Defense said; there will be diplomatic and (even) military countermeasures for the attack. This, from a three star, tho retired, Russian general..well, I’m not going to bed tonight, no use staring at the ceiling! Shamanov wouldn’t have made such a worrisome public announcement unless it met with prior approval by Putin himself..

          I fully concur with your opinions regarding Anatoly Karlin and what qualities he has as a writer.

  6. elmerfudzie
    April 13, 2018 at 22:31

    Just a moment please!, CONSORTIUMNEWS readers, take time to examine those opinions of one, Anatoly Karlen. His article can be reviewed at

    I never seen such a compressed, detailed summary, of the Syrian conflict, from a military posture that is… His article title says- The Khmeimim crisis. I can only hope that someone in the WH will present a rendering of Karlen’s observations to our POTUS, BEFORE HE ISSUES AN ORDER FOR A SINGLE, DAMN, STRIKE.

    Frankly, after assessing the article, I had a rather nauseous reaction to “every stone being turned” supporting military force as opposed to cultivating a diplomatic route. In any case, it’s a must read! What’s your opinion Ray?

    • Zachary Smith
      April 13, 2018 at 23:00

      I was about half-way through the piece when I asked myself “who the hell is this character?”

      Anatoly Karlin
      About Me

      I am a blogger and independent researched based in Moscow, Russia, where I returned in 2016 after spending most of my life in Britain and California.

      I’m about 65% Russian, 25% Lak (Dagestani), and 10% other (mostly Italian, Jewish).I have a degree in Political Economy from U.C. Berkeley.

      what the Rational Wiki says about him:

      Anatoly Karlin is a Russian alt-right, white nationalist anti-Semitic conspiracy theorist blogger who promotes racialist pseudoscience. He writes for UNZ Review and has his works reprinted by Russia InsiderWikipedia’s W.svg with his permission.

      Despite having political views typical of neo-Nazis and white nationalists and even speaking alongside Richard Spencer on a podium — Karlin is a crypto-Nazi, who describes himself as a non-racist “liberal race realist”.

      I found his speculations in the link piece more interesting than realistic.

      • elmerfudzie
        April 13, 2018 at 23:50

        Zachary Smith, aside from the man’s personal persuasions or political alliance(s), I was very much impressed with his military posture assessments, for both naval and ground support, as well as unintended “consequences” to consider. This, on the heels of an attack today, by NATO’s permanent members, their continued action(s) against Syria and perhaps even, harming Russian ground forces stationed in the Damascus target zones. In any case, Karlin is not a brainless ninny. Frankly, I’d take new information, advise, even from the devil himself if only, the muddy waters of this conflict would be made clearer, as the East- West frictions continue to goad us all towards a world war three scenario…

      • Realist
        April 14, 2018 at 00:29

        Karlin is usually Saker’s nemesis on Unz. I find him to be a bundle of contradictions, but with a gifted, articulate and highly organized mind. He is NOT a Putin fan boy. He would not be anybody’s hero on this blog. You had better be ready to author an encyclopedia, though, if you plan to debate him. He is not the usual simple-minded troll that occasionally visits this site.

        He is as prolific at the keyboard as Robert Parry was. Where he finds the time is beyond me. He is one of a number of Unz contributors who see race as a major problem that further complicates addressing the coming population bomb in a world of depleting resources. I don’t think he advocates extermination camps (at least not overtly), but he and several others over there definitely think that some human genotypes are less fit than others in the emerging future of high technology. Yes, that contingent on the Unz site calls themselves “race realists,” and includes (if you can believe) even some black spokespersons of African descent, though blacks are the usual target for what many there seem to imply is an inevitable cull.

        I wouldn’t characterise Unz as a “Nazi” site, but it allows discussion of such third rail topics. Many liberals and progressives would consider CN to be extremist and racist (incorrectly in my opinion) for allowing criticisms of Israel to stand here. I try to confine my analysis of Karlin’s pieces to his facts and arguments at hand rather than his entire personal history, while also trying to ignore his conspicuous ego.

        Not long ago everyone even slightly left of center was calling Pat Buchanan a neo-Nazi, but now he’s just an oft-times sensible “paleoconservative,” especially when he condemns America’s perpetual wars. America could use a good dose of isolationism, short of rabid nationalism, about now. The world is complicated and one pure ideology rarely gains universal sway… thank goodness. There will always be too many exceptions for one size to fit all. That’s the problem with the “unipolar moment” America is trying to cram down the world’s throat.

        • mike k
          April 14, 2018 at 14:27

          An intelligent troll is better?

  7. tina
    April 13, 2018 at 22:03

    Last week djt tweeted we are getting out of Syria, we have to build our nation, Tonight, djt tweeted he is unleashing military strikes. . Djt has his evangelicals, today his money guy spent 1.3 millions so his girlfriend could have an abortion. I just love these old guys who can make a problem go away, yet they love to tell us that abortions are wrong. Wag the dog ,anyone? I know, if I did not want a baby , I would call Cohn , and he could help he make the whole situation disappear. I do not mean djt, but the rnc guy who is in charge of the money. Also, that abortion was like a live baby , taking out part and selling them, that is why abortionsa re necessary, please my last sentence was snark. Why can rich people have abortions, but all of us not rich , not allowed? I know, we are poor and feeble

  8. Zachary Smith
    April 13, 2018 at 21:53

    Headline: “Trump says he has directed precision strikes in Syria — live updates”

    Lots of this on Google News, so it may not be a false alarm.

    Either Trump is a lot dumber than I’d supposed, “somebody” has the goods on him, or the bribe money was beyond resisting. Can’t the poor doofus see that Hillary’s supporters were NOT the ones who put him in the White House? Betrayal on foreign affairs and on the TPP isn’t going to make his “base” very happy.

  9. E. Leete
    April 13, 2018 at 21:35

    Well, so much for that.

    Music for the interlude: Randy Newman’s Political Science

  10. jazza
    April 13, 2018 at 21:18

    Trump turning t military action anyway – who needs eveidence when you support ISIS ???

  11. jose
    April 13, 2018 at 19:58

    I commend the Veterans Intelligence Professionals for Sanity missive directed to Trump. If only Trump were to read it, he could see, I hope, that attacking Syria would be morally corrupt and criminal. Unfortunately, we have president of Trump violating the law by launching missiles against Syria. According to author Curtis FJ,” The United States launched 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles at Al-Shayrat Airfield in Syria from a warship based in the Mediterranean Sea starting at 3:42 a.m., local Syrian time, in the early morning of Friday, 7 April 2017.” I wish good luck to all people that might think that Trump will not use force against Syria.

  12. anastasia
    April 13, 2018 at 19:48

    They give due process to people when the penalty is a $50.00 fine, but when the penalty is the annihilation of an already suffering country and even a nuclear holocaust of who knows how man in the world, , they go with the inadmissible double hearsay evidence of an interested party? May they rot in hell.

  13. mike k
    April 13, 2018 at 19:43

    No peace movement. And the world on the brink of destruction! Sad.

  14. anastasia
    April 13, 2018 at 19:43

    This is a lie. They are preparing for war in the White House. Trump appointed his War Consigliere 10 days BEFORE this fraudulent chemical weapons attack. This liar, this thug in the White House (. )
    was instrumental in foisting upon the public the “weapons of mass destruction” lie, which was on its face preposterous, but this chemical weapons lie is even more absurd and patently false. The Executive Branch, the Legislative Branch and the media are singing like a chorus about this bold and brazen lie, but despite the complete immoral unanimity among all three, they have not been able to convince probably more than half the people in this country and you can see this by the comments being made all over the internet. Their appeal is an appeal to the lowest common denominator in this country. May they all rot in hell.

    • jose
      April 13, 2018 at 20:12

      A very good post you have developed. Please consider the following about US president Trump. According to author David Krieger, “Trump has demonstrated to the world that in matters of war, as with tweeting, he is impulsive, shoots from the hip and is not constrained by US or international law. These characteristics are not generally accepted by other world leaders as being preferred qualities in a US president. Furthermore,Trump’s impulsivity in ordering the attack sets a dangerous standard for someone in charge of the US nuclear arsenal. It demonstrates the extreme dangers of allowing a single individual to exercise control over a country’s nuclear arsenal. I will pray for Syria.

  15. April 13, 2018 at 18:37

    Thanks VIPS!

  16. RamboDave
    April 13, 2018 at 18:05

    There won’t be a US attack … for the following reasons:

    BREAKING: Iraqi FM warns US against attacking Syria

    What will the US do if Iraq denies the use of it’s air space, which they probably have already done? How will the US protect it’s 2000 special forces in Eastern Syria, especially around Deir Ezzor oil fields? (See the next article below)

    BREAKING: Major showdown between US and Russian backed forces in Deir Ezzor.

    Syrian forces are massing around Deir Ezor, in Eastern Syria where they have already crossed the Euphrates river, and are only 2 miles from the Conoco gas plant and the Omar oil fields, held by the US proxies with US advisers present . These areas can be easily overrun. There are no defensive positions, just 30 miles of open flat land. Syrian Army has massive artillery positions back over on their side of the river. Syria can blanket the entire oil field with air burst fragmentary artillery shells. They also have air defense systems in place that can cover both sides of the river.

    You think the Joint Chiefs aren’t pointing this out to Trump?

  17. mike k
    April 13, 2018 at 18:05

    The situation remains very dangerous. The deep state is determined to attack Russia. Syria and Iran are only stepping stones to the big prize. This little breather is deceptive; the main narrative remains on track. The deep state knows that time is on Russia and China’s side; so they have to make something happen fast to use their perceived conventional military might while it is still effective (possibly?).

    The builders of this dying Empire are desperate now – it is always this way with an Empire’s death throes. There will be no turn to real peace in the months ahead, and these April days will be especially dangerous.

    The situation remains very dangerous. The deep state is determined to attack Russia. Syria and Iran are only stepping stones to the big prize. This little breather is deceptive; the main narrative remains on track. The deep state knows that time is on Russia and China’s side; so they have to make something happen fast to use their perceived conventional military might while it is still effective (possibly?).

    The builders of this dying Empire are desperate now – it is always this way with an Empire’s death throes. There will be no turn to real peace in the months ahead, and these April days will be especially dangerous.

    The situation remains very dangerous. The deep state is determined to attack Russia. Syria and Iran are only stepping stones to the big prize. This little breather is deceptive; the main narrative remains on track. The deep state knows that time is on Russia and China’s side; so they have to make something happen fast to use their perceived conventional military might while it is still effective (possibly?).

    The builders of this dying Empire are desperate now – it is always this way with an Empire’s death throes. There will be no turn to real peace in the months ahead, and these April days will be especially dangerous.

    The situation remains very dangerous. The deep state is determined to attack Russia. Syria and Iran are only stepping stones to the big prize. This little breather is deceptive; the main narrative remains on track. The deep state knows that time is on Russia and China’s side; so they have to make something happen fast to use their perceived conventional military might while it is still effective (possibly?).

    The builders of this dying Empire are desperate now – it is always this way with an Empire’s death throes. There will be no turn to real peace in the months ahead, and these April days will be especially dangerous.

    The situation remains very dangerous. The deep state is determined to attack Russia. Syria and Iran are only stepping stones to the big prize. This little breather is deceptive; the main narrative remains on track. The deep state knows that time is on Russia and China’s side; so they have to make something happen fast to use their perceived conventional military might while it is still effective (possibly?).

    The builders of this dying Empire are desperate now – it is always this way with an Empire’s death throes. There will be no turn to real peace in the months ahead, and these April days will be especially dangerous.

    • mike k
      April 13, 2018 at 19:12

      Sorry for all the repetitions.

  18. David G
    April 13, 2018 at 16:39

    The MSM I am encountering are pretty consistently using modifiers like “suspected” and “alleged” with reference to the recent phonied-up “chemical attack”.

    That’s not a scientific survey, and just the presence of those words wouldn’t stop these same media from cheering on the U.S. cruise missiles if it comes to that.

    But maybe it marks a bit of progress?

  19. michael crockett
    April 13, 2018 at 16:35

    I thank the VIPS for their letter to the President. The false flag operations are now so chronic that, in my opinion, it is becoming more difficult to get the people of the US and Europe to buy into the BS. A recent poll in the UK found that only 22% of Brits support a military attack on Syria. The scenario with the chemical weapons assault on the Scripals was over the top and sloppy. It appears that quite a few English football fans will be going to Russia to attend the World Cup. Thus ignoring all the UK Governments hysterical warnings concerning their safety. The lie about the Syrian military using chemical weapons in Douma is already starting to unravel. Here again, we have a region were 90% of the terrorist stronghold has been liberated. So of course the terrorists manufacture another phony chemical attack. I think that people are doubting the propaganda narrative and skepticism is starting to creep in.

    • jose
      April 13, 2018 at 20:28

      An excellent post Michael. Please consider the following. According to Global Research April 2017 article: “Washington’s False Flag: United Nations Confirmed that US Supported Syrian “Rebels” Were Using Chemical Weapons..The UN report refutes Washington’s allegations that the government of Bashar al Assad was using chemical weapons against his own people..Washington (which supports the opposition rebels in the use of chemical weapons) rather than Damascus is responsible for extensive crimes against humanity…UN accuses Syrian rebels of carrying out sarin gas attacks which have been blamed on Assad’s troops.” With all these evidence out in the open, I think someone has to be mentally retarded to believe that Assad ordered the murder of his countrymen. I mean, it takes a very conscious effort not to see the truth.

  20. E. Leete
    April 13, 2018 at 15:57

    Innocent until proven guilty: what a novel idea! Why, that’s a value a country’s justice system could be founded on, by golly! Maybe we should even apply it to foreign policy! Yeah, that’s the ticket.

    Honest to God, can Amurdica Absurdica get any more … murderous and absurd? Or have we reached the zenith after trying so hard for so long?

    I hate ….. …..

  21. Martin - Swedish citizen
    April 13, 2018 at 15:56

    Very well stated and crucial letter.
    Just read from the discussion in the UN SC today. The US, UK and France all state that since Russia has employed the veto too many times for their taste, these three countries consider it their obligation to attack Syria without the support of the UN and against international law. To the support of the UN and international law and the principle of peaceful resolution of crises rose Bolivia and Kazakhstan.

    • Martin - Swedish citizen
      April 13, 2018 at 16:13

      The US, UK and France apparently state that they respect the UN only if the UN does as they want!

    • Sam F
      April 13, 2018 at 16:28

      The sooner BRICS form a better UN with better aid to developing nations, the sooner the zionist oligarchs of the West can be exposed, embargoed, surrounded, overpowered, and permanently expelled from world government.

  22. Abe
    April 13, 2018 at 15:51

    Once again, media are citing so-called “independent analysis” and “open-source intelligence analysis” from Eliot Higgins and the Atlantic Council’s Bellingcat disinformation site.

    The “Bellingcat method” uses signature phrases “appear to show”, “appear to depict”, “appear to be” to purportedly “verify” video and photos supplied by the terrorist-affiliated White Helmets group in Syria.

    Higgins’ pal, fake “chemical weapons expert” Dan Kaszeta, has been flogging evidence-free Israeli intelligence claims about “chemical use” in Syria for years.

    The “Bellingcat method” of “open-source intelligence analysis” often produces humorous results.

    For example, in the Bellingcat article, “Revisiting Syria’s 2013 Sarin Attack on Saraqeb, Idlib” (April 27, 2017), Higgins repeatedly mentions the “smell” of the on 29 April 2013 incident .

    In his “analysis” of alleged “Devices used in the attack”, Higgins states that “The smell at the scene of the attack is described to the BBC as being very strong”.

    Higgins presents a statement from the video report: “It was a horrible, suffocating smell. You couldn’t breathe at all. Your body would become really tired.”

    Higgins presents another statement: “In this video it’s stated ‘These are smelly, and a lot of them were used.’.”

    Higgins later provides a lengthy quote from the BBC video:

    “I was not present then, but the FSA members came here and said that those chemicals were dropped on the southwestern side of the town. The injuries varies from bad to minor. The symptoms include constriction of the pupil, forth around the mouth, complete loss of consciousness as result of (inhaling) the smoke. The smoke was smelly, and the guy who rushed to help the victims lost consciousness when he got to the site.”

    Probably thinking we may have missed the early quote about how horrible the smell was, Higgins goes to the trouble of repeating the quote:

    ““It was a horrible, suffocating smell. You couldn’t breathe at all. Your body would become really tired.”

    Unfortunately for those alleged “eyewitnesses”, the BBC and its Google-sponsored “First Draft” coalition media “partners”, the French government, Higgins and his pal Kaszeta, none of whom can read, chemical science texts describe the odor of sarin.

    When pure, Sarin is odorless.

    When impure or contaminated, Sarin may have a slightly fruity odor, similar to a weak ethyl acetate solution.

    Neither pure nor impure Sarin produce a “horrible, suffocating smell”.

    Sarin is not capable of “producing strong smells”.

    Sarin does not smell “like rotten eggs”, “overpowering”, “like cooking gas”, or “like rotten food”.

    Based on three confirmed incidents of Al Qaeda controlled “eyewitness” tales of “strong smells” we can debunk any claims that Sarin is being described by these individuals.

    However, the very strong odor of Al Qaeda “chemical realities”, and “Israeli intelligence” fictions, has been emanating from Higgins and Kaszeta in both their Brown Moses and Bellingcat iterations.

  23. mike k
    April 13, 2018 at 15:43

    Does it ever occur to the average American that his/her government is dangerously insane to insist on holding onto it’s nuclear weapons? Russia has been pleading with us to sit down with them and begin implementing world denuclearization. We are still refusing to do so. So who is the warmonger on Earth – US or Russia?

  24. mike k
    April 13, 2018 at 15:38

    An important way that US government cyber criminals are playing with triggering nuclear war:

  25. Joe Tedesky
    April 13, 2018 at 14:52

    If the U.S. is seeking out humanitarian war crimes then why not invade Israel, for it’s Good Friday massacre, where the Israeli’s took pot shots to like killing fish in the barrel. Is not killing 17 unarmed Palestinians not a crime against humanity, not to mention the over 700 wounded Palestinians.

    Where is the outrage over the starvation, and killing, of Houthi’s by the Saudi’s with help from our American Air Force tactical refueling command? And in case we forget, how was it right to allow the murdering of Omar Gaddafi by our U.S. backed terrorist?

    How much monger will our beloved U.S. Flag wave tall over our country’s and our allies war crimes?

    • mike k
      April 13, 2018 at 15:09

      If we were honest Joe (we’re not) we would take down the flag over the white house, and raise the Jolly Roger, with it’s skull and cross bones. That’s our real flag now. Nikki Haley has told the world that the US now is not beholden to any laws but it’s own greed and lust for violence. We are the world’s pirates.

      • Joe Tedesky
        April 13, 2018 at 15:45

        Yes mike it is time to give our Ragged Old Flag a rest, as plausible deniability is all us American citizens have left now, as to release us all from our being under the spirit of darkness which now reins heavily over our nation. So hoist the dreaded buccaneers Jolly Roger for this is what our warmongering Zionist inspired leaders have turned us into…. blood thirsty pirates.

        Hey mike being a Pittsburgher I must insist we leave our Buco’s out of this labeling of ours, and concentrate on the swamp critters who have brought us to this terrible place. Go Buco’s!

        • mike k
          April 13, 2018 at 16:19

          Yeah Joe, it’s fun when pirates is a game, but not so much when millions of lives are destroyed. Let’s keep the game, and ditch the ugly reality.

      • Sam F
        April 13, 2018 at 16:22

        Thanks for the laugh at the District of Corruption; as moored boats use Jolly Roger to ward off burglars.

    • Sam F
      April 13, 2018 at 16:17

      That would indeed would be a fine surprise for us all, and completely reasonable.

    • jose
      April 13, 2018 at 20:35

      I believe you are correct. I would add that if the US is looking for war criminals, it should only look into a mirror. Or stated a bit sarcastically: ” Mirror, mirror in the wall, tell me, who’s the biggest rogue of all? I surmise we all know the answer, don’t we? Well done Joe.

  26. Alex
    April 13, 2018 at 14:44

    Sky News cuts off former general for questioning official story of chemical attach in Syria:

  27. Al Pinto
    April 13, 2018 at 14:41

    Well stated letter…

    Are you certain that sanity and logic will work with Trump? Even, if by a remote chance he’ll read it, I have some doubt that he’d take your word over FOX’s…

    • mike k
      April 13, 2018 at 15:03

      True Al, but we have to try…..

      • Al Pinto
        April 14, 2018 at 07:51


        Nice try, but it’s nearly impossible to stop runaway freight train, but it’ll crash on its own…

        • mike k
          April 14, 2018 at 14:34

          Probably Al. But a lot of my friends (everybody) are on this train with me, and it gets pretty anxious doing nothing to try to stop it. Plus nobody really knows for certain whether it can be stopped or not. The only way to find out is to try…….

    • Realist
      April 13, 2018 at 16:03

      Perhaps Ray McGovern, Scott Ritter or Lawrence Wilkerson could get some face time on Tucker Carlson’s show? All three used to be media favorites before they opted for the truth on Russia rather than the vast warmongering conspiracy fed to the American people by the media.

      • Sam F
        April 13, 2018 at 16:16

        Good idea.

  28. Drew Hunkins
    April 13, 2018 at 14:25

    Now ‘Newsweek’ is declaring that anyone who questions that Assad carried out a chem attack last week is nothing more than a “right-wing conspiratorialist.”

    What a sickening, disgraceful and laughingly distorted attempt by the establishment press to control the parameters of debate.

    In the old days, before it got bogged down in gonadal identity politics and Maddow/MSDNC induced Russophobia, it was always the populist left, socialists and Gore Vidal (rest his wonderful soul) type isolationists who were the brightest, most vociferous and articulate critics of the war party and Washington imperialist-militarists.

    Over the last several mos we witnessed tens of thousands of committed activists filling the streets of DC for non economic identity politics issues pertaining to pussy hats, executive crotch grabbing, and guns, yet when it comes to a potential nuclear conflagration that could incinerate within ten minutes 50 of America’s largest cities, the streets of the capital, NYC, SF, etc. are eerily and deadly quiet.

    It is breathtaking to see what purports to be an anti-war peace movement remain moribund, naive, insouciant and unquestioning.

    Have the capitalist diversions — Facebook/Twitter/Instagram narcissism, shopping, porno, drug addiction, “reality” celebrity TV, End Times contentment — proven so effective that they have completely neutered the rebels among us?

    • Abe
      April 13, 2018 at 14:46

      No friend to those with noses, fake “citizen investigative journalist” Eliot Higgins is back Tweeting up a storm.

      The latest Tweet from Higgins features a link to his 13 February 2018 article in Newsweek, “What Is the Truth About the Chemical Attacks on Syrian Civilians?”

      Higgins condemns “denialists” and “fringe sites” that exercise any shred of basic journalistic skepticism (conspicuously absent from Bellingcat and Higgins’ “First Draft” coalition propaganda “partners” in the mainstream media).

      Higgins loudly moans that anyone not immediately buying the claims of the Al Qaeda-allied White Helmets in Syria (whose videos and claims Higgins and Bellingcat launder for mainstream media dissemination and public consumption) is:

      “promoting the idea that facts are no longer sacred; truth is a matter of opinion; official bodies set up to investigate these incidents are compromised; victims are performers; and rescuers are belligerents.

      “This is dangerous, Orwellian inversion of reality.”

      Newsweek, the Washington Post, the New York Times, and Higgins’ other “First Draft” propaganda outlets compete for status as the Bellingcat press office. Not a single one of Higgins’ media “partners” dares to question the “online investigations” churned out by Bellingcat.

      Higgins and Bellingcat “findings” are simply broadcast verbatim, and when that’s not sufficient, “First Draft” outlets publish informative li’l articles by Higgins and Kaszeta.

      • jaycee
        April 13, 2018 at 15:24

        Another sad columnist, purportedly of the “left”, is published today on CounterPunch comparing doubts about the Douma “chemical attack” with moon landing skeptics. This is how factual analysis gets replaced with partisan opinion and name-calling. This particular writer praises Bellingcat and White Helmets as authoritative, and views the jihadists as progressive revolutionaries – a stance which seems based more on his personal acrimony towards his domestic sectarian political adversaries who have questioned the wisdom of using jihadists as a proxy military. The severe consequence of military action in Syria as currently proposed does not seem to ever occur to him, or others who advocate the self-righteous hellfire.

        I would just add that international law does not allow a military attack on Syria unless it is sanctioned by the Security Council. Attempts are being made to argue the presumed use of chemical weapons create a sort of vague generalized threat which would justify a military response as “self-defence”. These types of tendentious legal reasonings were also a feature in the run up to Iraq in 2003.

        • Drew Hunkins
          April 13, 2018 at 15:59

          Hi jaycee, Could you provide the columnist’s name? Thanks.

        • Desert Dave
          April 13, 2018 at 16:02

          I read that article. I am rapidly losing respect for CounterPunch. Such a pity.

          In it Mel Gurtov says “The Bellingcat website is perhaps the only place where you can find fact-based reporting on chemical attacks in Syria. It was launched by Eliot Higgins…”

          And it totally overlooks the Real reason Obama did not respond militarily when his “red line” on chemical weapons was reportedly crossed. It was that Russia and independent experts alerted him to the probability that the whole thing was a false flag and that he was being mousetrapped.

          This is the article that Jaycee rightly condems:

          For pure lie-based propaganda you can go to the NY Times today:

          • Abe
            April 13, 2018 at 18:23

            Counterpunch is, shall we say, quite uneven when it counts.

            A correction for you, Dave:

            Louis Proyect is the author of the Counterpunch article.

            Adoring Bellingcat fanboy Proyect re-posted his li’l piece on his own li’l blog

            Interestingly, Proyect’s “false flag” article comes complete with its own hilarious Inverted Hasbara (fake “anti-Jewish”) troll for Proyect to pretend joust in the comments.

            As if Proyect doesn’t scoop big ole bucketloads of Hasbara chum all on his own.

          • RamboDave
            April 13, 2018 at 18:39

            I saw the videos in the Counterpunch article. The frothing at the Mouth is nothing but shaving cream. Some of the bodies are actually dead (probably from air strikes). Here below is a video of the rebels actually making a staged video and spraying the shaving cream (or perhaps it’s whipped cream) on the children. You have to look closely.


        • Abe
          April 13, 2018 at 16:15

          Louis Proyect, self-professed “Unrepentant Marxist” blogger, regularly scribbles homages to Eliot Higgins and Dan Kaszeta of Bellingcat. Proyect’s latest Bellingcat fanboy screed appeared today at Counterpunch:

          Proyect is positively obsessed with defending Higgins and Kaszeta’s long ago debunked claims about chemical weapons in Syria.

          Atlantic Council “regime change” propaganda gets propagated by of “useful idiots”, including British blogger George Monbiot and Joshua Frank, managing editor of Counterpunch.

          In a 6 April 2017 Counterpunch piece titled “On That Gas Attack: We Don’t Need Conspiracies to Oppose US War in Syria”, Frank cited leading conspiracy theorist “Dan Kaszeta over at Bellingcat”.

          Frank demonstrated the serious lack of discernment among of “progressive” journalism outlets. “So let’s quit peddling baseless theories” exclaimed Frank, having just given props to a prime purveyor of baseless theories used to justify US military intervention in Syria.

          Interestingly, four months earlier, after the Washington Post / PropOrNot imbroglio hit the media, Frank was successful in arranging the removal of CounterPunch from PropOrNot’s infamous “List” of alleged “Russian propaganda outlets”.

          However, there was no follow up investigation of any sort by Counterpunch. Frank did not venture beyond merely dismissing PropOrNot as “juvenile”, “amateurs” and a “shady little group”.

          In fact, Frank had precisely played PropOrNot’s game. In his initial email to the group, Frank “provided them with evidence” – a link to an article he wrote which was critical of Russian involvement in Syria – to demonstrate that “CounterPunch was not in the pocket of Russians”.

          PropOrNot thanked Frank for “reaching out”, and after an exchange of emails with the group, Frank saw fit to report that “PropOrNot assures me they are not funded by the Pentagon or associated with the Hillary Clinton campaign or anyone else.”

          Frank declared that “PropOrNot’s blacklist is not just frivolous, it’s potentially dangerous as it directly discourages dissenting points of view”.

          But the PropOrNot propaganda operation, including the mainstream media circus that surrounded it, represent more than a discouragement of “dissenting” viewpoints. In reality, the “fake news” brouhaha is a direct assault on fact-based independent investigative journalism, aimed at marginalizing or eliminating resistance to the West’s hybrid war efforts.

          • Drew Hunkins
            April 13, 2018 at 16:29

            Thanks Abe. Yes, Proyect has been unbearable when it comes to Assad bashing and Putin bashing.

          • Abe
            April 13, 2018 at 16:40

            Not to mention Proyect’s serious boy crush on Higgins.

          • CitizenOne
            April 13, 2018 at 23:00

            There is a lack of evidence to immediately support the claims being propagandized on our ears.

            It is the repeat act before evidence situation we saw before.

            Instant analysis and guilty verdict plus a decision to take military action is always a sign of mob justice. This action has all the validity of a Lynching. It is a crooked world and it seems the good guys are nowhere to be found. Just the posse looking for somebody to string up. There is no Lone Ranger to stop it.

            I hope you are afraid of these “training exercises”.

            The ability to whip up support for military action is being honed here .

            I do agree with Trump that we should get out and there has been enough damage done over their in Syria.

            Unfortunately there has been little coverage of the destruction and the deaths over the years that have destroyed that nation?. People have no basis for questioning the claims Assad is responsible even though logic dictates he is the last player in the room who would do it.

            All so lopsided and unanimous it is scary. I understand why all this media malfeasance and propaganda needs to see the light of day. Truly monopolistic control and propaganda from the MSM.

        • Abe
          April 13, 2018 at 16:34

          Fake “chemical weapons expert” Dan Kaszeta from the fake “independent analysis” site Bellingcat is busy promoting Libya-style direct Western military attacks on Syria:

          Kaszeta advises “depriving the Assad regime of its air force in its entirety”, but mentions in an aside that the “presence of Russian aircraft complicates this issue immensely.”

        • David G
          April 13, 2018 at 16:54

          When the recent replay of the Aleppo P.R. program got going with Eastern Ghouta a few weeks ago, CounterPunch editor Jeffrey St. Clair also wrote something almost indistinguishable from what you’d see on MSNBC or in the WashPost.

          I don’t get these swaggering “leftists” who expect us to go along with them in supporting the U.S.’s forever-wars – or at least the propaganda frames that make the wars palatable to the Western public.

          • Drew Hunkins
            April 13, 2018 at 17:28

            Excellent comment David G. I’ve always loved Jeffrey’s work but lately I’m having misgivings. He’s also tossed around the term “Sputnik left” a lot recently in order to mock and ridicule those of my persuasion who don’t incessantly Putin bash and actually have a few nice things to say about the current make-up of the Kremlin.

            I want to stress that Jeffrey’s done absolutely phenomenal work in the past and I consider him a must-read, but I’m really starting to question his take on Syria and Putin, etc. Hopefully he comes around.

          • David G
            April 13, 2018 at 18:04

            Thanks, Drew Hunkins.

            For the record, this is what I was referring to, from CounterPunch on Feb. 23:

            “Only the most hardened Assadite could look at the carnage in eastern Ghouta from merciless Russian and Syrian airstrikes and not be appalled. I take it as a basic rule that any aerial bombing campaign against cities is a war crime, even if all those hospitals are being hit by ‘accident.'”

            I’m not going to bother to explain what’s wrong there, which you see as well as I do. And yes, Jeffrey St. Clair also took a dumb, cheap shot after the Russian presidential election.

            But obviously I’m a hardened Assadite and Putinite, so don’t pay attention to me.

            I’ll still keep reading St. Clair’s pieces, though. (Louis Proyect is a tougher slog all around.) Of course, if Alexander Cockburn were still with us, we’d be contending with climate-change denialism at CounterPunch as well.

        • Zachary Smith
          April 13, 2018 at 17:47

          Your point about international law is one which the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity either forgot or chose to overlook. Even if Assad confesses tomorrow, Trump will be breaking many laws if he proceeds on his own.

          • Kabobyak
            April 13, 2018 at 20:43

            Zachary, I thought the same thing even reading the headline for this article. Perhaps it was just an oversight or poor choice of words, and not something some of the letter signees promoted. VIPS have been one of the most important forces in countering the tsunami of disinformation and lies which succeed in swaying so many. It may seem a minor trifle to focus on considering their great work, but I hope VIPS will be careful not to send a message that war is not ok unless evidence is found, and I’m sure that is not their intent. As we know from many international investigative agencies, their findings are frequently far from objective; “evidence” may well be found in Syria (or at least interpreted to be by the warmongers). The point is that attacking Syria is illegal and wrong regardless of any “evidence”.

          • Trudy Hess
            April 14, 2018 at 17:42

            Perhaps the VIPS group deliberately chose to omit any reference to international law. Their expertise is in the area of intelligence. They could damage their credibility by writing about law, which is outside their professional expertise. At the same time,I would bet that they are aware that U.S. strikes in this case are illegal.

      • Abe
        April 13, 2018 at 17:42

        Higgins’ 13 February 2018 article was a generous gift from Newsweek, apparently in apology for its temerity in publishing an 8 February 2018 piece mentioning the fact that “experienced chemical weapons experts and investigators such as Hans Blix, Scott Ritter, Gareth Porter and Theodore Postol have all cast doubt on ‘official’ American narratives”.

        Higgins immediately accused Newsweek of indulging in “trutherism”

        In a 9 February post on the Bellingcat blog, Higgins sidestepped the problem of chain of custody over physical samples from the Khan Shaykhun incident, dismissing concerns by journalist Gareth Porter and others as mere “chemical weapon truther claims that these results were from samples being tampered with in someway, without presenting any actual evidence it took place”.

        Check out the comments at the end of Higgins Bellingcat blog post.:

        When a reader inconveniently mentioned Newsweek’s fawning 22 June 2015 feature article, “Meet Eliot Higgins, Putin’s MH17 Nemesis”, adoring Bellingcat fanboy Louis N. Proyect jumped up to Higgins’ aid.

    • mike k
      April 13, 2018 at 15:02

      Yes. As you know, the “capitalist diversions”, lying media, false education, phony patriotism, drugs, pornography, sports fanaticism, etc. don’t leave much time for quiet, intelligent consideration of little details like imminent nuclear annihilation.

      • Dennis
        April 13, 2018 at 20:48

        May I remind you that….
        Capitalism has facilitated you to do many things…including post on the internet
        Not all media lies. You are on a site that tells the truth, and there are plenty of others.
        Not all education is false. Just ask my daughters who are American medical doctors.
        Not all patriotism is phony. Yours included. What little you seem to have.
        Not all drugs are evil. I am a cancer survivor thanks to American developed drugs.
        Not all pornography is bad…just addiction to pornography. And who are you to define what is pornography?
        Being a sports fanatic hardly disqualifies one from other “intelligent considerations”.

        You are coming across as a ‘doomer’ my man!
        Have I missed your “intelligent consideration of little details like imminent nuclear annihilation” in your many Consortium posts.
        I would read your posts if they offered any solutions to the challenges we are facing.
        But you never do.
        It’s easy to be “moaner”.

    • Sam F
      April 13, 2018 at 16:12

      Yes, the Newsweek Newspeak is disheartening, and the blackout of anti-war action makes it seem absent.

      But I thank the VIPS for this very credible, well-argued, well-written statement; we are fortunate to hear them.

      Most who would be progressive are indeed controlled by mass media’s identity/fashion gab, its claims that everyone disagrees with you if you disagree with us, and other outrageous propaganda gambits that take decades of experience in many areas of public policy to see through and oppose. The audience is small.

      In a society under oligarchy control of mass media, democracy cannot be restored by persuasion.

    • Realist
      April 13, 2018 at 17:17

      I’m not sure anyone has read this post I attached to another CN article over 2 hours ago (no replies). But, to me, it’s a stunner. All this hullabaloo about gas attacks may well have been a prelude to a ground invasion of Syria by the “allies.”

      According to Sputnik News, the Syrians just captured a bunch of Brits that were poised to engage in a ground invasion of Syria after the missiles started flying!

      “According to a report by Al-Mayadeen news channel cited by Fars News, a number of British troops have been captured during the Syrian Arab Army’s operations in Eastern Ghouta.

      They are believed to be a part of international military forces deployed in the region to launch a ground assault in Damascus in cooperation with the US. According to the report, the US and other NATO countries, Jordan and Israel planned to launch attacks from several fronts, but the plot failed as Syrian armed forces made a series of rapid advances in Eastern Ghouta in March. The plot allegedly involved massive airstrikes by US and Israeli planes that were supposed to pave the way for ground forces.

      Since the plot failed due to rapid advances by the Syrian army, the US cancelled all operations planned for these foreign forces and ordered an immediate withdrawal from Eastern Ghouta through the eastern suburbs of Damascus, including Douma.”

      So, this was apparently not going to be a mere “punitive” slap against Assad for allegedly using chemical weapons. It was to be the start of an invasion and ground war against Syria (and Russia). What next?!!

      • Drew Hunkins
        April 13, 2018 at 17:23

        I’ve read it now Realist. Thank you for posting. It is stunning indeed!

      • Zachary Smith
        April 13, 2018 at 21:28

        I have a feeling there is some truth to the story of the Syrians capturing the foreigners, but like with the “gas attack” claims, there needs to be some evidence. It’s possible Syria has decided to go for cold cash ransom money instead of publicity. How many of the media outlets screaming for war would publish it anyhow? Heard a brief radio story in the car (don’t have a radio at home!) telling of an emergency UN meeting where the Russian envoy told his side of the “gas attack” story. The “NPR” announcer said something to the effect that the spunky Nikki Haley wasn’t going to let him get away with that. I yelled something at the radio before turning it off. Didn’t want to hear the younger version of Hillary running her mouth.

      • Gregory Herr
        April 13, 2018 at 22:09

        What next?!! Apparently a missile strike. I’m going now to check the Pentagon “briefing”.

    • glitch
      April 13, 2018 at 17:51

      A couple bright sides about this skirpal-douma false flag hoax;
      it appears to have failed to launch an escalation,
      and has been exposed with proof (see latest moonofalabama),
      and after so many so-called journalists have self-outed their amateurish hackery.

    • Israel Is the Problem???
      April 13, 2018 at 22:44

      I don’t think this really has anything to do with the Gas Attack or the Skripal Poisoning.

      They all might very well be false flags. (they are just for public consumption)


      The real problem is the likelihood of a war between Iran vs. Israel & Saudia Arabia. If Israel
      thinks Iran is getting close to having an atomic bomb it will attack Iran preemptively. Which
      could really start a world war or result in a nuclear exchange.

      The problem originated from the second invasion of Iraq after 9-11. Iraq’s role
      / Saddam Hussein’s role (whether planned or not) was to act as a check on Iran.

      Now, with Iraq gone, and it leaning toward Shiite Iran, the next country between Iran
      and Israel is Syria, which is also leaning toward an alliance with Iran.

      So with Iran developing an atomic bomb and extending its influence toward the
      Israeli border, the situation is edging toward explosive. Iran is also funding the proxy
      war against Saudi Arabia in Yemen as well.

      If the United States pulls out of the Middle East (which is what Trump really wants to do)
      it will leave Israel and Saudi Arabia alone to confront Iran, which will be catastrophic. (Atomic
      weapons & world’s oil supply)

      This explains Trump’s moving the US Embassy to Jerusalem, the missile strikes,
      his failure to pull us out of Afghanistan, wanting to scrap the Iran nuclear deal, all of which
      would signal a US disengagement with the Middle East, and embolden Iran and probably
      precipitate a war between Israel & Saudi Arabia vs Iran.

      There are too many peculiar things:

      1] The King of Saudi Arabia praising Israel last week.

      2] Obama calling ISIS a JV team – ISIS was probably initially funded
      by the United States (through Saudi Arabia) to bring down the pro-Iranian
      Assad before it got off the leash and attacked Iraq.

      3] All of the nonsensical Russia hysteria – needed to indicate to Putin
      that the United States is seriously capable of causing problems for Russia
      if Putin does not back off his support of Iran & Assad.

      4] Trump tweeting we would be leaving Syria, then backing off that last week.

      5] Tweeting to Russia to get out of the way of our missiles two days
      ago (so as to avoid an inadvertent escalation)

      6] Now ordering the missile strike, before obtaining proof or going through due process.

      I also would not doubt if Israel / the Mossad was not behind some
      of the DNC or Podesta email hacks. (with Russia being the false flag)
      ANY Republican in office would be better for Israel than having to deal
      with the adversarial Obama / Hillary administration. (Netanyahu supported
      Mitt Romney outright in 2012, so he would have been more clever in 2016)

      IN SUMMARY: The reason Trump is getting us involved in Syria is because the United
      States is acting like the last nuclear reactor control rod (absent Iraq, which was formerly)
      between Israel, Saudi Arabia and Iran.

      *Not trying to antisemitic here or anti-Israel, just trying to make sense of it all.

      Anyone else see any similar patterns?

  29. Abe
    April 13, 2018 at 14:17

    Fake “citizen investigative journalist” Eliot Higgins and fake “chemical weapons expert” Dan Kaszeta of the Atlantic Council’s UK-based Bellingcat blog are long-time propaganda launderers for Al Qaeda terrorist-affiliates and their White Helmets allies in Syria.

    Disinformation produced by Higgins and Kaszeta made its way into the 11 April 2017 Trump White House’s “assessment” of the Khan Shakhun incident.

    Kaszeta is an enthusiastic backer of any and all evidence-free “Israeli intelligence” claims about Syria.

    A 19 April 2017 Israeli “assessment” presented by anonymous military officials included evidence free claims that Syrian military commanders has ordered the Khan Shaukun attack with President Assad’s knowledge and “estimates” that Syria still has “between one and three tons” of chemical weapons.

    The Associated Press report on the Israeli military briefing included an interview with Kaszeta, who said the Israeli estimate appeared to be “conservative”. Kaszeta claimed that “One ton of sarin could easily be used to perpetrate an attack on the scale of the 2013 attack. It could also be used for roughly 10 attacks of a similar size to the recent Khan Sheikhoun attack”.

    Back in 2013, Kaszeta peddled similar evidence-free claims by Israeli defense officials.

    Now peddling policy recommendations, fake “expert” Kaszeta predictably urges Libya-style direct Western military attacks on Syria.

    Kaszeta attempts to make a case for “depriving the Assad regime of its air force in its entirety”

    The “presence of Russian aircraft complicates this issue immensely”, mentions Kaszeta in an aside.

    • jose
      April 13, 2018 at 20:07

      Good points Abe. Please consider the following points from the legal side. According to author David Krieger, “Trump did not seek and obtain Congressional authorization for his act of war in attacking a Syrian Air Force base. Thus, the attack was illegal under US law. It is not the president’s prerogative to initiate attacks against sovereign nations without Congressional authorization. By acting without such Congressional authorization, Trump has placed himself and the presidency above the rule of law. Moreover,Trump did not seek and obtain authorization for his attack against Syria from the United Nations Security Council, as is required under international law. By failing to do so the US has put itself outside the boundaries of the UN Charter, which is also a part of US law, as well as other international law to which the US is bound. When you have a character like Trump abrogating the US supreme law of the land shamelessly, do you think that “Trump Urged to Seek Evidence Before Attacking Syria” appeal will work? I hope it does, really.

    • Abe
      April 14, 2018 at 18:55

      The remarks of Krieger, president of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, were re-published at Counterpunch, which has largely devolved into a warmongering “liberal interventionist” megaphone.

      Counterpunch’s Patrick Cockburn, still fantasizing that the conflict is Syria has been a “civil war”, is visibly lamenting the “Big Noise” of “very limited airstrikes” launched by the US, Britain and France.

      Like most “liberal interventionists”, Cockburn is easily impressed by “authentic-looking video”.

      Like the entirety of mainstream media, the fearlessly muckraking Cockburn is contemptuous of the “defiance” of Syrian people angry about the illegal Western attack on their capitol. No doubt he’d like to lob a few more missiles on those “bad” Syrian protesters.

      Cockburn obviously isn’t interested in the inconvenient history of those Jaysh al-Islam “rebel fighters” whose plight he bemoans:

      Their habit of torture and execution of prisoners, use of captives as human shield, and attacks using chemical weapons, including use of chlorine gas or other agents, no doubt due to their “frustration at the continued resistance” of the Syrian people to Western-backed terrorist mercenaries.

      Sad that the long siege of Douma by terrorist mercenaries is “over”, Cockburn might even cry.

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