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Targeting Syria

by Stephen Lendman Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014 at 11:42 AM


Targeting Syria

by Stephen Lendman

On Tuesday, Obama addressed the American Legion's annual convention in Charlotte, NC. More on his speech below.

The next day, the so-called UN Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Syria (COI) issued its latest anti-Assad report.

Its mandate is investigating human rights abuses. It's a pro-Western imperial tool. Paulo Pinheiro heads it.

His reports bear testimony to his bias. He largely blames Assad for Western-sponsored crimes.

Last summer, Syria's permanent UN envoy Bashar al-Jaafari addressed the General Assembly, saying:

"The Commission of Inquiry on Syria is still deliberately blowing things out of proportion when displaying its findings, also fully disregarding or downplaying core issues.''

''There are blood-curdling scenes that flagrantly contravene the Syrians' dignity and human rights regarding the crimes of the armed terrorist groups, ranging from eating human flesh, cutting throats, mutilating bodies, beheadings on sectarian and confessional grounds, throwing bodies from rooftops to committing hundreds of suicide bombings using car bombs in populated areas, recruiting children, abducting and slaughtering clergymen, assassinating scholars in mosques, issuing instigative fatwas on 'sexual jihad,' killing children on the charges of infidelity, robbing factories and transporting them to Turkey."

COI largely ignored them until Obama declared war on IS. Doing so is a pretext to advance Washington's regional imperium.

It has nothing to do with humanitarian intervention. Democratic values don't matter.

It has everything to do with seeking unchallenged dominance. It's about serving monied interests instead of popular ones.

COI's new report headlined "Syria's brutal war threatens international peace and security."

It ignores Washington's full responsibility for waging it. Proxy death squad killers are used. They're imported from dozens of countries.

They include growing numbers of Islamic State (IS) fighters. COI cited "(m)ass atrocities by Government and non-State armed groups."

It highlighted the risks of spreading conflict. "Hundreds of civilians are dying each day as the fighting goes on with no regard to law or to conscience," said Pinheiro.

In areas IS controls, "Fridays are regularly marked by executions, amputations and lashings in public squares."

"Civilians, including children, are urged to watch. Bodies of those killed are placed on display for several days, terrorizing the local population."

"Women have been lashed for not abiding by (IS's) dress code."

Its members committed crimes of war and against humanity, said Pinheiro.

They include "torture, murder, enforced disappearances and forcible displacement."

IS "poses a clear and present danger to civilians, and particularly minorities, under its control in Syria and in the region."

Other non-state groups pose similar threats, said Pihheiro. He saved his toughest criticism for Assad.

He did so unjustly. He did in previous reports. He's now apparently promoting direct US intervention.

He's a legal scholar. So is former Constitutional law professor Obama. They know only the Security Council can authorize letting one country attack another.

It can only be in self-defense. It's never how America wages wars. It doesn't matter.

Naked aggression is official US policy. Pinheiro apparently supports it wholeheartedly.

Damascus keeps committing crimes of war and against humanity with impunity, he claimed.

From January through July, he alleged government forces killed hundreds of men, women and children weekly.

He lied claiming government forces prevent injured civilians from reaching hospitals. Saying they block medical supply deliveries is false.

So is claiming "(h)umanitarian aid (is) obstructed as a weapon of war." And "(i)n Government prisons, detainees were subjected to horrific torture and sexual assault."

Saying "Government forces used chemical agents, likely chlorine, in eight separate incidents in western Syria" during April and May is a bald-faced Big Lie.

Anti-government accusations exclude credible evidence proving them. Plenty attests to the barbarity of extremist groups like IS, Jabhat al-Nusra and others.

Pinheiro largely points fingers the wrong way. He's done so as COI head since its August 2011 establishment.

His mandate is pro-Western propaganda. It's helping Washington oust Assad. Credibility isn't his long suit.

Reports targeting Assad up the stakes for direct US intervention. US surveillance flights began.

IS is the pretext. Syria is the target. Air strikes could begin any time.

IS fighters are proxies in Washington's war against Assad.

Stop NATO editor Rick Rozoff believes intelligence Washington wants aims to help them.

In 2012, CIA operatives trained them in Jordan. They're US allies against Assad and enemies in Iraq at the same time.

Obama speeches defend the indefensible. They repeat one Big Lie after another.

He told Legionnaires they helped America "become what we are today - the greatest democratic, economic, and military force for freedom and human dignity that the world has ever known."

No nation has a more appalling human rights record. None is more responsible for genocidal mass murder, destruction and human misery worldwide.

None inflicted more harm on more people longer. None has less right to be called democratic.

Despite protracted Main Street Depression conditions since 2008, Obama lied claiming "we are stronger at home."

Economic conditions for most Americans are deplorable. Most jobs are part-time or temp ones with few or no benefits.

Most don't pay a living wage. So-called "quality, affordable healthcare" falls way short of touted benefits.

America's privileged alone are well-off. Most others struggle to get by.

Obama's claim about America best positioned "to lead in the 21st century than any other nation on Earth" is utter rubbish.

Indeed America's military is strongest. Unexplained is how it ravages one country after another.

Obama is waging America's third Iraq war. Syria is on deck. So-called surveillance flights are a ruse to target Assad.

To oust him. To replace him with a subservient pro-Western stooge. To remove a key Israeli adversary.

To isolate Iran. To head Washington closer to unchallenged regional dominance. To exploit its resources.

To enlist popular support for another US war of aggression indefensibly called just.

Obama is much more than a war criminal multiple times over. At stake is world peace. It's humanity's survival.

"(N)obody else can do what we do," said Obama. Nobody else does what we do the way we do it worldwide.

"No other nation does more to underwrite the security and prosperity on which the world depends," claims Obama.

No nation does more to undermine it than America. None disdains peace more.

None is more dismissive of rule of law principles. None more contemptuous of democratic values.

Calling "the United States…the one indispensable nation in the world" belies its decades of genocidal crimes against humanity worldwide.

After vowing "American combat troops will not be returning to fight in Iraq," Obama deployed 1,000 special forces killers to do so.

Perhaps many more will follow. He ludicrously claimed "Al Qaeda affiliates (threaten) our homeland."

He lied saying "the security of the American people is my highest priority…" He claimed attacking Iraq is "to protect our diplomats and military advisors."

To help "thousands of men and women and children who were trapped on a mountain." To root "out a cancer like" IS.

To "protect our people and support our partners to take the fight to" IS.

False on all counts!. It's about protecting the interests of Big OIl. It's wanting unchallenged regional dominance.

It's about making the world safe for war profiteers. It's stoking fear deceptively to enlist public support.

It's plundering nations for profit. It's exploiting their people. It's prioritizing capital's divine right. It's imperialism's dark side and then some.

It's not about humanitarian intervention. It has nothing to do with defending the homeland.

It's not to counter external or internal threats. It's not about spreading democratic values.

Obama left unexplained US surveillance flights over Syria in preparation for targeted air strikes.

He was silent about using IS fighters against Assad. He said nothing about likely direct intervention against another regional country posing no threat to America.

At the same time, he ignored how all US wars violate core international and constitutional laws.

Attacking Syria will add another war crime to his rap sheet. Throughout his tenure, he ravaged one country after another.

He targeted one independent government after another. He did so for regime change. Don't expect him to change now.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

Visit his blog site at

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs.

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