The Latest Atlanticist Tough Guy Act. Western Media in Crisis. The Syria Gas Attack Saga

The limited Trump administration-led strikes against the Syrian government included a statement by the US, UK and French governments, saying that the action wasn’t intended to overthrow the Syrian government. This trio went out to warn against any future use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government.

Significantly omitted from this pronouncement, is whether the Syrian government has actually used such – an observation that takes into consideration other possibilities. Specifically, the use of chemical weapons by the rebels and/or that group staging a future chemical attack, for the purpose of having the Syrian government blamed.

It’s not paranoid to believe that the most recent military bombing operation against the Syrian government is motivated in part by the desire to confront Russia. The claim of militarily acting against the Syrian government’s alleged use of chemical weapons comes across as having a window dressing aspect.

This past Saturday, One America News reported that Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that Vladimir Putin asked his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, to forward information of his (Macron’s) claim that France has proof that the Syrian government recently used chemical weapons. According to Lavrov (as quoted by One American News), Macron declined, saying that it involved a “secret” mechanism. On that same day, another Anglo-American media source said that the French proof at issue is exclusively from social media. Lavrov noted this to the BBC’s Stephen Sackur.

(On the subject of Macron, it was earlier claimed that the Russian government meddled in the last French presidential election against him. This claim was rebuffed by the head of France’s cybersecurity agency – something very much downplayed in Western mass media, unlike the typically unchallenged claim of Russian meddling in that French vote.)

This past Sunday morning, CNN had a propaganda segment, featuring Spider Marks and Samantha Vinograd. Marks approvingly said that the Trump administration led strikes significantly diminished the Syrian government’s capability to launch chemical attacks – adding how Assad can “butcher” his people with other means. Marks uses different prose when describing the not too distant mass killing of civilians in Iraq (following the US government led attack on that country). There has been a comparative lack of coverage to the civilian deaths in Yemen, involving US ally Saudi Arabia. It’s extremely disingenuous to hold Russia and/or the Syrian government exclusively culpable for the deaths in the Syrian Civil War, which includes unsavory behavior among the rebels. Marks’ upbeat view of the significance of the Trump administration led bombing campaign has been reasonably contradicted elsewhere.

During this past Saturday’s UN Security Council meeting, the Syrian representative said that the bombed Syrian science and research center, had been recently inspected by the Organization for the Prohibition of the Chemical Weapons, with nothing shady found. At that discussion, there was no follow-up contradiction to that comment.

In 2016, Barack Obama informed Jeffrey Goldberg, that the claim of a Syrian government sarin gas attack in 2013 isn’t a “slam dunk”. US Secretary of Defense James Mattis concurs, adding that the same holds true of the chemical attack claim on the Syrian government in 2017. Mattis has been rather restrained with the latest claim against the Syrian government – initially not going along with it – only to later say there’s now enough evidence without providing such. Theodore Postal is among other sources, which haven’t accepted the claims of Syrian government involved chemical attacks.

Of late, there’ve been Western mass media TV segments with people who say they were victims of the most recently alleged Syrian government chemical weapons attack. The segments have been brief, without much, if any critical follow-up. Is it possible for some bombing victims to experience a non-chemical attack, while experiencing some (stress some) symptoms that are typically evident in a chemical attack? Meantime, Western mass media continues to downplay the phony pro-rebel propaganda.

Though perhaps doubtful, more time will hopefully provide a clear answer to what actually occurred, vis-à-vis the latest allegation against the Syrian government.


This article was originally published on Strategic Culture Foundation.

Michael Averko is a New York based independent foreign policy analyst and media critic.

Featured image is from the author.

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Articles by: Michael Averko

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