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Syria gas attack cited by Obama etc., from Peter Myers

You can download this newsletter as a WORD file, with bold emphasis highlighting the headlines and important points:

(1) US says Assad used chemical weapons, but was winning the war against the rebels (NYT June 2013)
(2) UK Home Secretary Theresa May cites Chemical Weapons attack by Assad (Oct 2015)
(3) Obama asserts Assad launched Chemical Weapons attack on Aug 21, 2013 (Oct 2015)
(4) Intercepted phone calls prove Syrian Army used Nerve Gas, U.S. Spies say (Foreign Policy, Aug 27, 2013)
(5) Intelligence report on Aug 21, 2013 Chemical Weapons attack came from Israel - Gareth Porter
(6) Phone call was intercepted by Mossad, not CIA
(7) WSJ touts "Israeli intelligence indicating movement of Syrian chemical weapons"
(8) US claims about Syria Chemical Weapons are based on intelligence supplied by Mossad
(9) Eamonn Fingleton: Aug 21 gas attack was False Flag, because Assad was winning the Civil War (Sept 1, 2013)(10) UN debate stalls US attack on Syria (Aug 29, 2013)
(11) UK parliament votes against Syria war plan, mindful of Iraq WMD deception (Aug 29, 2013)
(12) Geoffrey Robertson, a former UN judge, calls for the Bombing of Syria (Aug 30, 2013)
(13) G20 leaders speak out against US-led strike on Syria (Sept 6, 2013)
(14) G20 leaders reject attack on Syria over Chemical Weapons; Assad was framed (Sept 8, 2013)
(15) AIPAC to lobby Congress for Syria strike (Israel News, Sept 6, 2013)
(16) Obama "red line" would use Chemical Weapons as a Causus Belli; but Congress defied AIPAC (Sept 14, 2013)
(17) US Media refused to publish Seymour Hersh expose of US lies on Aug.
21 Syrian gas attack
(18) British Lab showed Aug. 21 Sarin was not Assad's but Al Nusra's - Seymour Hersh, LRB
(19) Sarin nerve gas was used by Syrian rebels, not Assad - U.N. official (Washington Times, May 6, 2013)
(20) UN commissioner says evidence indicates Syria rebels 'used sarin' (BBC, May 6, 2013)
(21) Obama authorizes CIA to arm Syrian rebels, citing Assad use of Chemical weapons (WSJ, June 14, 2013)
(22) Daily Mail publishes leaked emails from defense contractor on False Flag chemical weapons attack in Syria (Jan 2013)
(23) Hacked emails reveal ‘Washington-approved' plan to stage chemical weapons attack in Syria
(24) A Look into the Britam Defence Data Leak Files -
(25) Britam Defence is British private military company, operates mainly  in the Middle East

(1) US says Assad used chemical weapons, but was winning the war against the rebels (NYT June 2013)

{if you're winning the war against the rebels, why use gas & cross
Obama's "red line", inviting airstrikes? - Peter M. Also see item 9, by
Eamonn Fingleton}

U.S. Is Said to Plan to Send Weapons to Syrian Rebels


WASHINGTON — The Obama administration, concluding that the troops of
President Bashar al-Assad of Syria have used chemical weapons against
rebel forces in his country’s civil war, has decided to begin supplying
the rebels for the first time with small arms and ammunition, according
to American officials.

The officials held out the possibility that the assistance, coordinated
by the Central Intelligence Agency, could include antitank weapons, but
they said that for now supplying the antiaircraft weapons that rebel
commanders have said they sorely need is not under consideration.

Syrian Refugees Struggle at Zaatari CampMAY 8, 2013

FiveThirtyEight: Polls Show Chemical Weapons Affect Public’s View on
SyriaJUNE 14, 2013

Text of White House Statement on Chemical Weapons in SyriaJUNE 13, 2013

Death Toll in Syrian Civil War Near 93,000, U.N. SaysJUNE 13, 2013

Obama’s Vow on Chemical Weapons Puts Him in Tough SpotMAY 4, 2013

Syrian Forces Seen Stepping Up Air Attacks on RebelsJUNE 12, 2013

Supplying weapons to the rebels has been a long-sought goal of advocates
of a more aggressive American response to the Syrian civil war. A
proposal made last year by David H. Petraeus, then the director of the
C.I.A., and backed by the State Department and the Pentagon to supply
weapons was rejected by the White House because of President Obama’s
deep reluctance to be drawn into another war in the Middle East.

But even with the decision to supply lethal aid, the Obama
administration remains deeply divided about whether to take more
forceful action to try to quell the fighting, which has killed more than
90,000 people over more than two years. Many in the American government
believe that the military balance has tilted so far against the rebels
in recent months that American shipments of arms to select groups may be
too little, too late.

Some senior State Department officials have been pushing for a more
aggressive military response, including airstrikes to hit the primary
landing strips in Syria that the Assad government uses to launch the
chemical weapons attacks, ferry troops around the country and receive
shipments of arms from Iran.

But White House officials remain wary, and on Thursday Benjamin J.
Rhodes, one of Mr. Obama’s top foreign policy advisers, all but ruled
out the imposition of a no-fly zone and indicated that no decision had
been made on other military actions.

Mr. Obama declared last August that the use of chemical weapons by the
Syrian government would cross a “red line” that would prompt a more
resolute American response. In an April letter to Congress, the White
House said that intelligence agencies had “varying degrees of
confidence” that Syrian government troops had used chemical weapons. But
the conclusion of the latest intelligence review, according to
officials, is more definitive.

The White House said on Thursday that the Assad regime had used chemical
weapons “on a small scale against the opposition multiple times in the
last year.” The assessment came after American and European government
analysts examined physiological evidence and other intelligence
indicating that Syrian troops had used sarin gas against the opposition.
The announcement said that American intelligence officials now believed
that 100 to 150 people had died from the attacks, but officials
cautioned that the number could be higher.

That conclusion is based on evidence that includes intelligence on the
Assad government’s plans for the use of chemical weapons, accounts of
specific attacks, and descriptions of symptoms experienced by victims of
the attacks. Mr. Rhodes said the new assessment had changed the
president’s calculus. [...]

A version of this article appears in print on June 14, 2013, on page A1
of the New York edition with the headline: U.S. Is Said to Plan to Send
Weapons to Syrian Rebels.

(2) UK Home Secretary Theresa May cites Chemical Weapons attack by Assad (Oct 2015)

Theresa May's speech to the Conservative Party Conference – in full

May was speaking on the third day of the Conservative Party Conference
in Manchester

Tuesday 6 October 2015 12:21 BST

{photo} Home Secretary Theresa May speaks on the third day of the
Conservative Party Conference in Manchester Reuters {end}

"[...] 2,000 miles away, in towns and cities across Syria, eleven
million men, women and children have been forced from their homes.  More
than four million have become refugees.  And nearly a quarter of a
million have been killed.

More than 600,000 Syrians are taking refuge in Jordan, a country that
before the conflict had a population of little more than six million.
There are more than one million finding respite in Lebanon, which
previously had a population of just over four million.  By the end of
the year, the United Nations believes there will be a further 1.7
million Syrian refugees in Turkey.

These people are fleeing a civil war that exceeds even the other
conflicts of the Middle East in its barbarism, brutality and bloodshed.

Bashar al Assad's forces are committing war crimes on an industrial
scale, deliberately targeting civilians and poisoning their own citizens
with chemical weapons.  ISIL – the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and
the Levant – is engaged in a programme of ethnic cleansing, mass murder
of enemy soldiers, systematised rape and sexual violence, kidnappings
and murder.

And the other players in this appalling civil war include Hezbollah, Al
Nusra Front – a jihadist group affiliated to Al Qaeda – and several
other jihadist militias.

These militias in turn are often backed by powerful foreign sponsors,
and the forces of Bashar al Assad are supported by Iran and Russia –
whose warplanes are engaged in airstrikes against civilians and
anti-government fighters. [...]"

(3) Obama asserts Assad launched Chemical Weapons attack on Aug 21, 2013 (Oct 2015)

Showdown at the UN Corral

Were these US-funded Good Guys (in Syria) always Bad Guys in an
ill-fitting disguise?

by Justin Raimondo

My Catbird Seat

Oct 2, 2015

If there was any doubt that Washington has learned absolutely nothing
since George W. Bush's invasion of Iraq, then President Obama's address
to the United Nations has confirmed the world's worst fears. It was an
oration that combined the most egregious lies with the wooly-minded
"idealism" that has been such a destructive force in world affairs since
the days of Woodrow Wilson. First, the lies:

"The evidence is overwhelming that the Assad regime used such weapons on
August 21st. U.N. inspectors gave a clear accounting that advanced
rockets fired large quantities of sarin gas at civilians. These rockets
were fired from a regime-controlled neighborhood and landed in
opposition neighborhoods. It's an insult to human reason and to the
legitimacy of this institution to suggest that anyone other than the
regime carried out this attack."

The evidence is far from "overwhelming," and the only insult to human
reason is the dogmatic repetition of this American talking point. As
Seymour Hersh pointed out in the London Review of Books:

"Barack Obama did not tell the whole story this autumn when he tried to
make the case that Bashar al-Assad was responsible for the chemical
weapons attack near Damascus on 21 August. In some instances, he omitted
important intelligence, and in others he presented assumptions as facts.
Most significant, he failed to acknowledge something known to the US
intelligence community: that the Syrian army is not the only party in
the country's civil war with access to sarin, the nerve agent that a UN
study concluded – without assessing responsibility – had been used in
the rocket attack. In the months before the attack, the American
intelligence agencies produced a series of highly classified reports,
culminating in a formal Operations Order – a planning document that
precedes a ground invasion – citing evidence that the al-Nusra Front, a
jihadi group affiliated with al-Qaida, had mastered the mechanics of
creating sarin and was capable of manufacturing it in quantity. When the
attack occurred al-Nusra should have been a suspect, but the
administration cherry-picked intelligence to justify a strike against

And this isn't the only time this President hasn't told the whole story
when it comes to the  findings of US intelligence agencies: that's why
fifty intelligence analysts are in open revolt at his cherry-picking of
intelligence in order to show we're making progress in the fight against
the Islamic State. And now we have former CIA chief David Petraeus, who
was forced to resign, openly coming out with a proposal that we ally
with the al-Nusra Front in order to overthrow Assad and edge out the
Islamic State. Shouldn't that arouse suspicion that Washington has been
covertly cooperating with al-Nusra – the Syrian affiliate of al-Qaeda –
all along, and that Petraeus merely wants to formalize his deal with the
Islamist Devil?

Here's another lie:

"[I]n Libya, when the Security Council provided a mandate to protect
civilians, America joined a coalition that took action. Because of what
we did there, countless lives were saved and a tyrant could not kill his
way back to power.

"I know that some now criticize the action in Libya as an object lesson,
that point to the problem that the country now confronts, a
democratically elected government struggling to provide security, armed
groups in some places, extremists ruling parts of the fractured land.
And so these critics argue that any intervention to protect civilians is
doomed to fail. Look at Libya.

"And no one's more mindful of these problems than I am, for they
resulted in the death of four outstanding U.S. citizens who were
committed to the Libyan people, including Ambassador Chris Stevens, a
man whose courageous efforts helped save the city of Benghazi.

"But does anyone truly believe that the situation in Libya would be
better, if Gadhafi had been allowed to kill, imprison or brutalize his
people into submission? It's far more likely that without international
action, Libya would now be engulfed in civil war and bloodshed."

It is beyond embarrassing that the President of the United States is
going before the world assembly of nations proclaiming that he and his
allies prevented Libya from being "engulfed in civil war and bloodshed."
What does he think is happening there at this very moment?

The reality is that the intelligence did not show a "genocide" was in
the making. Officials at the Defense Intelligence Agency – the same
agency now being accused by its analysts of "cooking" intelligence to
suit the administration's political agenda – could provide no empirical
evidence for the assertions made by then Secretary of State Hillary
Clinton that Col. Moammar Gaddafi was planning on slaughtering civilians
en masse.

The claims made by the Obama administration that intervention was the
only alternative to "genocide" were contested, at the time, by Alan J.
Kuperman, writing in the Boston Globe:

"The best evidence that Khadafy did not plan genocide in Benghazi is
that he did not perpetrate it in the other cities he had recaptured
either fully or partially – including Zawiya, Misurata, and Ajdabiya,
which together have a population greater than Benghazi."

"It is hard to know," Kuperman continues, "whether the White House was
duped by the rebels or conspired with them to pursue regime-change on
bogus humanitarian grounds."

With the truth-challenged Hillary Clinton at the helm of this
misbegotten misadventure, it isn't at all hard to draw the conclusion
that the "genocide" claim was an outright lie perpetrated by the
administration and its Libyan Islamist allies.

That these brazen falsehoods are coupled with phrases oozing with
liberal "idealism," calls for "international cooperation," and
proclamations that all Washington desires is "peace" throughout the
Middle East and the world makes for a toxic and particularly nauseating
cocktail. Bashar al-Assad is a "tyrant," but the regime of Gen. Abdel
al-Sisi, which overthrew the democratically elected government, is
merely guilty of making "decisions inconsistent with inclusive democracy."

Speaking of Assad, Obama's focus wasn't on the spread of the Islamic
State but on the Syrian strongman, who is barely holding on to power by
his fingernails. He cited Washington's support for the so-called
"moderate" rebels, but complained that – for some unspecified reason –
"extremist groups have still taken root to exploit the crisis."  What he
didn't mention – although Putin did – is that these alleged "moderates"
have gone over to the extremists in droves, raising the question: were
these US-funded Good Guys always Bad Guys in an ill-fitting disguise?

(4) Intercepted phone calls prove Syrian Army used Nerve Gas, U.S. Spies say (Foreign Policy, Aug 27, 2013)

Exclusive: Intercepted Calls Prove Syrian Army Used Nerve Gas, U.S.
Spies Say

By Noah Shachtman

August 27, 2013 - 8:54 pm

Last Wednesday, in the hours after a horrific chemical attack east of
Damascus, an official at the Syrian Ministry of Defense exchanged
panicked phone calls with a leader of a chemical weapons unit, demanding
answers for a nerve agent strike that killed more than 1,000 people.
Those conversations were overheard by U.S. intelligence services, The
Cable has learned. And that is the major reason why American officials
now say they’re certain that the attacks were the work of the Bashar
al-Assad regime — and why the U.S. military is likely to attack that
regime in a matter of days. [...]

(5) Intelligence report on Aug 21, 2013 Chemical Weapons attack came from Israel - Gareth Porter

From: Paul de Burgh-Day <>
Date: Thu, 5 Sep 2013 14:47:28 +1000
Subject: Gareth Porter: How Intelligence Was Twisted to Support an
Attack on Syria

How Intelligence Was Twisted to Support an Attack on Syria

By Gareth Porter

September 04, 2013 "Information Clearing House - "Truthout"

Secretary of State John Kerry assured the public that the Obama
administration's summary of the intelligence on which it is basing the
case for military action to punish the Assad regime for an alleged use
of chemical weapons was put together with an acute awareness of the
fiasco of the 2002 Iraq WMD intelligence estimate.

Nevertheless, the unclassified summary of the intelligence assessment
made public August 30, 2013, utilizes misleading language evocative of
the infamous Iraq estimate's deceptive phrasing. The summary cites
signals, geospatial and human source intelligence that purportedly show
that the Syrian government prepared, carried out and "confirmed" a
chemical weapons attack on August 21. And it claims visual evidence
"consistent with" a nerve gas attack.

But a careful examination of those claims reveals a series of
convolutedly worded characterizations of the intelligence that don't
really mean what they appear to say at first glance.

The document displays multiple indications that the integrity of the
assessment process was seriously compromised by using language that
distorted the intelligence in ways that would justify an attack on Syria.

Spinning the Secret Intelligence

That pattern was particularly clear in the case of the intelligence
gathered by covert means. The summary claims, "We intercepted
communications involving a senior official intimately familiar with the
offensive who confirmed that chemical weapons were used by the regime on
August 21 and was concerned with the U.N. inspectors obtaining evidence."

That seems to indicate that U.S. intelligence intercepted such
communiations. But former British Ambassador Craig Murray has pointed
out on his blog August 31 that the Mount Troodos listening post in
Cyprus is used by British and U.S. intelligence to monitor “all radio,
satellite and microwave traffic across the Middle East … ” and that
“almost all landline telephone communications in this region is routed
through microwave links at some stage [and] picked up on Troodos.”

All intelligence picked by the Troodos listening post is shared between
the U.S. and British intelligence, Murray wrote, but no commmunictions
such as the ones described in the U.S. intelligence summary were shared
with the British Joint Intelligence Organisation.  Murray said a
personal contact in U.S. intelligence had told him the reason was that
the purported intercept came from the Israelis. The Israeli origin of
the intelligence was reported in the U.S. press as well, because an
Israeli source apparently leaked it to a German magazine.

The clumsy attempt to pass off intelligence claimed dubiously by the
Israelis as a U.S. intercept raises a major question about the integrity
of the entire document. The Israelis have an interest in promoting a
U.S. attack on Syria, and the authenticity of the alleged intercept
cannot be assumed. Murray believes that it is fraudulent.

But even if the intercept is authentic, the description of it in the
intelligence summary appears to be misleading. Another description of
the same intercept leaked to The Cable by an administration official
suggests that the summary’s description is extremely tendentious. The
story described those same communications as an exchange of "panicked
phone calls" between a Syrian Defense Ministry official and someone in a
chemical weapons unit in which the defense ministry official was
"demanding answers for [about?] a nerve agent strike." That description
clearly suggests that the Syrian senior official's questions were
prompted by the charges being made on August 21 by opposition sources in
Ghouta. The use of the word "panicked", which slants the interpretation
made by readers of the document, may have been added later by an
official eager to make the story more compatible with the
administration’s policy.

But the main problem with the description is that it doesn't answer the
most obvious and important question about the conversation: Did the
purported chemical weapons officer at the other end of the line say that
the regime had used chemical weapons or not? If the officer said that
such weapons had been used, that would obviously have been the primary
point of the report of the intercept. But the summary assessment does
not say that, so the reader can reasonably infer that the officer did
not make any such admission. The significance of the intercept is,
therefore, that an admission of chemicals weapons use was not made.

The carefully chosen wording of the summary - the ministry official was
"concerned with the U.N. inspectors obtaining evidence" - suggests that
the official wanted to make sure that UN inspectors would not find
evidence of a nerve gas attack. But it could also mean precisely the
opposite - that the official wanted the inspectors to be able ascertain
that there was no use of chemical weapons by Syrian forces in eastern
Ghouta. The latter possibility is bolstered by the fact that the regime
agreed within 24 hours of the first formal request on August 24 from UN
envoy Angela Kane for unimpeded access to eastern Ghouta. As late as
Friday, August 23, the UN Department of Safety and Security had not yet
decided to give permission to the UN investigators to go into the area
because of uncertainties about their safety.

The intelligence summary makes no effort to explain why the regime
promptly granted access to the investigators. Another anomaly: the fact
that the UN investigators were already present in Damascus, having been
initially requested by the Assad regime to look into a gas attack the
regime had charged was carried out by the rebels on March 19. The
two-page assessment by the British Joint Intelligence Organisation
released August 29, pointed to this question:"There is no obvious
political or military trigger," it said, "for regime use of Chemical War
on an apparently larger scale now, particularly given the current
presence of the UN investigating team."

Another obvious case of a misleading description of intelligence in the
summary involves information from US geospatial and signals intelligence
purporting to show that the Assad regime was preparing for a chemical
attack in the three days prior to August 21. The intelligence summary
describes the intelligence as follows: "Syrian chemical weapons
personnel were operating in the Damascus suburb of Adra from Sunday,
August 18 until early in the morning on Wednesday, August 21 near an
area that the regime uses to mix chemical weapons, including sarin."

That seems like damning evidence at first glance. However, despite the
use of the term "operating," the US intelligence had no information
about the actual activities of the individual or individuals being
tracked through geospatial and signals intelligence. When administration
officials leaked the information to CBS news last week, they conceded
that the presence of the individual being tracked in the area in
question had been viewed at the time as "nothing out of the ordinary."

Yet, after the August 21 event, the same information was suddenly
transformed into "evidence" that supports the official line. The summary
refers to "streams of human signals and geospatial intelligence that
revealed regime activities that we assessed were associated with
preparations for a chemical attack." Thus the same information that
provided no indication of "preparations" was now presented as though it
included knowledge of some "activities" somehow related to getting ready
for chemical warfare.

A third piece of intelligence cited in the summary - unsourced but
presumably from an intelligence agent – might seem to denote the intent
to carry out a chemical weapons attack. However, the wording is
slippery. "On August 21," the document says, "a Syrian regime element
prepared for a chemical weapons attack in the Damascus area, including
through the utilization of gas masks." That intelligence, if accurate,
doesn’t establish an intent by the government to carry out an attack; it
could conversely suggest the government’s anticipation of a chemical
attack by the rebels. The intelligence's language is ambiguous; it
contains no certainty that the chemical weapons attack for which the
regime was preparing was one it intended to initiate itself.

Behind the Uncertainty on "Nerve Gas"

The intelligence summary includes a notable indication that the
intelligence community was far from convinced that nerve gas had been
used August 21.

The summary said the intelligence community had "high confidence" that
the government had carried out a "chemical weapons attack," and added,
"We further assess that the regime used a nerve agent in the attack."
The fact that a separate sentence was used to characterize the
assessment of the nerve agent issue and that it did not indicate any
level of confidence is a signal that the intelligence community does not
have much confidence in the assessment that nerve gas was used,
according to a former senior US intelligence official who insisted on
anonymity. The former official told Truthout that the choice of wording
actually means the intelligence analysts "do not know" if nerve gas was

The summary includes yet another sign of the analysts' lack of
confidence that nerve gas was used, which was equally well-disguised.
"We have identified one hundred videos attributed to the attack," it
said, "many of which show large numbers of bodies exhibiting physical
signs consistent with, but not unique to, nerve agent exposure." Unless
it is read carefully, the use of the word "bodies" - meaning corpses -
instead of "victims" might be missed. But why would the intelligence
community be focused on how many "bodies" – meaning corpses – exhibit
particular "physical signs" when the far more relevant indicator of
nerve gas would the number of "victims" exhibiting certain symptoms?

That strange choice averts acknowledgement of a fundamental problem for
the intelligence community: Most of the alleged victims being shown in
the videos posted online do not show symptoms associated with exposure
to nerve agent. Corpses without any sign of wounds, on the other hand,
would be "consistent" with a nerve agent attack.

The symptoms of a nerve agent attack are clear-cut: Soon after initial
symptoms of tightness of chest, pinpoint pupils and running nose, the
victim begins to vomit and to defecate and urinate uncontrollably,
followed by twitching and jerking. Ultimately, the victim becomes
comatose and suffocates in a series of convulsive spasms. The symptoms
shown in dozens of videos of victims being treated in medical centers in
Ghouta, however, are quite different. In an interview with Truthout, Dan
Kaszeta, a specialist on chemical, biological and radiological weapons
who has advised the White House on those issues, pointed out that a
nerve gas attack would have been accompanied by a pattern of symptoms
that are not shown in the videos posted online. "There should be more or
less universal vomiting," Kaszeta said. But he did not see any vomiting
or evidence of such vomiting on the clothing or on the floor in any of
the videos he saw. Stephen G. Johnson, a chemical weapons forensics
expert at Cranfield University in the United Kingdom, noticed the same
thing. "Why aren't more people vomiting?" he asked Truthout in an

A number of specialists, including Kaszeta and Johnson, also noticed
that personnel were shown handling the victims without any special
protective clothing but not exhibiting any symptoms themselves. Paula
Vanninen, director of the Finnish Institute for Verification of Chemical
Weapons, and Gwynn Winfield, the editor of CBRNe World, a magazine
specializing in chemical weapons, made the same point in interviews with
AFP on August 21. The only evidence of such effects is secondhand at
best: Statements issued the following day by both the spokesman for the
Supreme Military Council of the Free Syrian Army, Khaled Saleh, and the
spokesman for its Washington, DC, arm, the Syrian Support Group, said
that doctors and "first responders" had reported that they were
suffering symptoms of neurotoxic poisoning. Saleh claimed that at least
six doctors had died.

Experts noticed yet another anomaly: The number of those treated who
survived far outnumbered the dead, contrary to what would be expected in
a nerve gas attack. Dr. Ghazwan Bwidany told CBS news August 24 that his
mobile medical unit had treated 900 people after the attack and that 70
had died. Medecins Sans Frontieres reported that 3,600 patients had been
treated at hospitals in the area of the attack and that 355 had died.
Such ratios of survivors to dead were the opposite of what chemical
weapons specialists would have expected from a nerve gas attack. Kaszeta
told Truthout that the "most nagging doubt" he had about the assumption
that a nerve gas attack had taken place is the roughly 10-to-1 ratio of
total number treated to the dead. "The proportions are all wrong," he
said. "There should be more dead people." Johnson agreed. In an actual
nerve gas attack, he said, "You'd get some survivors, but it would be
very low. This [is] a very low level of lethality."

These multiple anomalies prompted some specialists to come up with the
theory that the government had somehow diluted the nerve gas to make it
less detectable and thus made it less lethal. Hamish de Bretton-Gordon,
a former commander of the chemical biological and nuclear terrorism unit
in the UK Ministry of Defense, told USA Today August 23 that the absence
of symptoms associated with nerve gas attack might be explainable by a
"low dose" chemical weapons attack.

Three days later, Winfield wrote in an article for CNN that the symptoms
seen in the videos indicated "lower toxicity" than was associated with
nerve agents. Winfield suggested that nerve agent might have been mixed
with other substances that were likely to remain in the environment
longer than a nerve agent such as sarin.

But Kaszeta cast doubt on the idea of a "low dose" nerve agent being
used. In an interview with blogger Eliot Higgins, who specializes in
weapons associated with the Syrian conflict under the name Brown Moses,
he said, "There's not much leeway between the incapacitating doses and
lethal doses with Sarin." The concentration causing any symptoms at all,
he said, "would quickly lead to absorption of a lethal dose."

Case Not Closed

If it wasn't a nerve gas attack, then, what other chemical weapon could
have produced the symptoms exhibited in the videos? In an analysis on
the Strongpoint Security website, Kaszeta considered each known type of
chemical weapon in turn and concluded that the symptoms exhibited in the
videos were not consistent with those associated with any of them. And
as Kaszeta told the Israeli daily Ha'aretz, the fact that none of the
people treating casualties were suffering obvious symptoms "would seem
to rule out most types of military-grade chemical weapons. … "

Instead of addressing the issue, the intelligence community opted to
accept information about the numbers and the cause of death provided by
sources that were presumably subject to the influence of opposition
forces in the area. The intelligence summary cites a "preliminary U.S.
government assessment" that 1,429 people were killed by chemical
weapons, including "at least 426 children." It provides no indication of
how the analysts arrived at such a precise estimate, which is highly
unusual for an intelligence assessment. The normal practice in arriving
at such an estimate is to give a range of figures reflecting different
data sources as well as assumptions.

The intelligence community's main center for analyzing all issues
relating to weapons of mass destruction is the CIA's Office of Weapons
Intelligence, Nonproliferation and Arms Control (WINPAC) Center. It is
the same center that tilted the 2002 Iraq estimate toward conclusions
that were not supported by technical facts. As the Robb-Silverman report
on the Iraq WMD intelligence fiasco pointed out, intelligence analysts
at WINPAC explained to the staff privately that they had reversed the
normal intelligence analysis burden of proof and operated on the
assumption that Iraq did have WMD programs.

That dynamic seems to have re-emerged in the case of Syrian chemical
weapons, especially with the appearance of hundreds of videos containing
highly emotive scenes of children suffering and, in many cases, already
having died. The contradiction between the emotionally charged visual
evidence and the technical analysis by chemical weapons specialists,
however, poses an unresolved issue. The uncertainty about what actually
happened on August 21 can be resolved only on the basis of actual blood
samples from victims who have been gathered by the UN inspectors and are
now being analyzed in European laboratories.

Both Médecins Sans Frontières and Human Rights Watch issued statements
citing statistics and descriptions of symptoms provided by local medical
personnel and, in the case of Human Rights Watch, local activists and
other contacts. However Human Rights Watch acting Middle East Director
Joe Stork stated, "The only way to find out what really happened in
Ghouta is let the UN inspectors in."

Médecins Sans Frontières made it clear in its original August 24
statement that it could not confirm the figure of 3,600 patients with
"neurotoxic symptoms," because its own staff did not have access to the
medical facilities in question. And in an August 28 statement, the
organization said scientific confirmation of the toxic agent was
required, and that the data it had been given could not be a "substitute
for the [UN] investigation."

But the advocates of an attack on Syria within the Obama administration
have not demonstrated a willingness to rely on the definitive evidence
from the UN investigators. Instead, they have evinced a strong hostility
toward the UN investigation ever since the Syrian government agreed to
allow it unimpeded access to the locations where chemical attacks were
alleged. National Security Adviser Susan Rice sent an e-mail to key
officials August 25 asserting that the UN investigation was pointless.

Since then, administration officials have dismissed the UN investigation
as representing a Syrian political tactic. Kerry claimed in his
statement Friday that when the UN inspections were "finally given
access, that access - as we now know – was restricted and controlled."

But Farhan Haq, the associate spokesperson for Secretary General Ban
Ki-Moon, who has been getting regular reports from the UN team on its
work in Syria, told Truthout that he was unaware of any restrictions on
the team's work.

The Obama administration has made it clear it does not intend to rely on
the UN investigation's findings. Kerry declared on Sunday that samples
of blood and hair from medical personnel in eastern Ghouta had been
found to contain traces of sarin nerve gas.

However, those samples did not go through the UN investigators, but were
smuggled out of Syria by opposition activists. The spokesman for the
Free Syrian Army's Supreme National Council, Khaled Saleh, had announced
August 22 that "activists" had collected their own hair, blood and soil
samples and were smuggling them out of the country.

The Obama administration had obtained physiological samples related to
previous alleged nerve gas attacks, which had tested positive for sarin,
but administration officials had insisted that, without being certain of
the chain of custody, "they couldn't be sure who had handled those
samples," as one official put it.

Despite the knowledge that samples lacking a clear chain of custody
could have been tampered with, however, the administration began to
disregard that key factor in June. It adopted a policy of accepting such
samples as evidence of government guilt, on the argument, as one
official explained, "It's impossible that the opposition is faking the
stuff in so many instances in so many locations."

That policy shift is part of the undeclared framework in which the
intelligence assessment was carried out.

Regardless of what evidence emerges in coming weeks, we would do well to
note the inconsistencies and misleading language contained in the
assessment, bearing in mind the consequences of utilizing ambiguous
intelligence to justify an act of war.

Gareth Porter (@GarethPorter), an independent investigative journalist
and historian covering US national security policy, was awarded the
Gellhorn Prize for journalism for 2011 by the UK-based Martha Gellhorn

(6) Phone call was intercepted by Mossad, not CIA

From: "Sadanand, Nanjundiah (Physics Earth Sciences)"
<> Date: Wed, 28 Aug 2013 10:10:26 -0400

The Israeli intimate involvement in instigating aggression against Syria
the pretext for attack on Syria provided by Israeli intelligence services.

Date: Wed, 28 Aug 2013

FM: John Whitbeck <From:>

Further to my message of Monday (below), the official American
assessment of who was responsible for the apparent use of chemical
weapons in Syria has now escalated from “very little doubt” to, in a
text read by Vice President Joe Biden, “no doubt” that it was the Syrian

What evidence could have been gathered prior to the forensic
examinations by the UN inspectors on the ground to provoke this change
to absolute certainty?

The answer may be found in an article published yesterday in the
prominent Israeli newspaper Yediot Ahronoth (“American Operation,
Israeli Intelligence”), which reports that “the IDF’s 8200 intelligence
unit was listening to the Syrian leadership during the lethal chemical
weapons attack last week in which hundreds were killed, and it was
Israel that relayed the incriminating information to the West”, that
three Israeli generals arrived in Washington on Monday “to show their
counterparts the most updated intelligence” and that “the source of most
of the information that the US has about Syria is Israeli, as is the
information about the targets for a possible attack.”

As is almost always the case with the United States and its European
acolytes, what Israel wants, Israel gets.

Those who do not rely exclusively on Israeli intelligence as a source of
evidence may be interested in a brief paragraph buried in a lengthy New
York Times report published yesterday in the International Herald
Tribune (“Like ‘watching a horror movie’”): “Near the attack sites,
activists found spent rockets that appeared to have been homemade and
suspected that they had delivered the gas. Mr. Salahideen [previously
identified as “a reporter for the opposition’s Alaan television
network”] said he did not think the small rockets could carry the amount
of gas needed to kill so many people and guessed that government forces
had fired the rockets to make it easier to blame the rebels, who often
fire improvised rockets at government targets.”

(7) WSJ touts "Israeli intelligence indicating movement of Syrian chemical weapons"

August 27, 2013, 8:27 p.m. ET

U.S., Allies Prepare to Act as Syria Intelligence Mounts

Evidence Includes Satellite Images, Intercepted Communications


During his Tuesday briefing, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney
reiterated the President's confidence that the Syrian government used
chemical weapons on August 21. He also said that options for a response
do not include regime change.

Positions hardened in the international standoff over Syria, as U.S.
officials said privately that a flood of previously undisclosed
intelligence, including satellite images and intercepted communications,
erased any last administration doubts that the Syrian regime had used
chemical weapons against its own people.

French, U.K. and U.S. military officials talked Tuesday about
coordinating their response to the alleged attacks.

WSJ national security correspondent Adam Entous has exclusive details of
Israeli intelligence indicating movement of Syrian chemical weapons to
the site of an alleged chemical attack outside of Damascus, Syria.

The current U.S. position, reflected in a set of tough remarks Tuesday
by Vice President Joe Biden, represents a dramatic turnaround from last
week. As late as Friday, Secretary of State John Kerry was pressuring
Syria to let United Nations inspectors visit the affected areas to help
determine the veracity of reports of a chemical attack.

Less than 48 hours later came a marked shift in tone. In an email on
Sunday, White House National Security Adviser Susan Rice told U.N.
Ambassador Samantha Power and other top officials that the U.N. mission
was pointless because the chemical weapons evidence already was
conclusive, officials said. The U.S. privately urged the U.N. to pull
the inspectors out, setting the stage for President Barack Obama to
possibly move forward with a military response, officials said.

The weekend turnabout was spurred by new intelligence that convinced Mr.
Obama's top national security advisers that forces loyal to Syrian
President Bashar al-Assad had used chemical weapons and that they were
actively trying to cover up evidence of it even while they shelled the
site of the attack, officials said. The White House also became
convinced the regime was stalling the U.N. inspection to delay a U.S.
response, they said.

One crucial piece of the emerging case came from Israeli spy services,
which provided the Central Intelligence Agency with intelligence from
inside an elite special Syrian unit that oversees Mr. Assad's chemical
weapons, Arab diplomats said. The intelligence, which the CIA was able
to verify, showed that certain types of chemical weapons were moved in
advance to the same Damascus suburbs where the attack allegedly took
place a week ago, Arab diplomats said.

The U.S. position changed rapidly. In a CNN interview recorded Thursday,
Mr. Obama highlighted the dangers of intervening with force in Syria
without U.N. Security Council approval. By Saturday night, the
administration had set a different course—if the U.S. chose to strike,
it would do so with allies and without the U.N., in order to sidestep an
expected Russian veto.

For a White House that has tried to differentiate itself from its
predecessor's war in Iraq, the bar for using intelligence to justify a
military operation is high, current and former officials say. The
administration plans to make public this week at least some of its
evidence before taking any military action, which it says would be aimed
at punishing, not removing, Mr. Assad. ...

(8) US claims about Syria Chemical Weapons are based on intelligence supplied by Mossad

From: Paul de Burgh-Day <> Date: Thu, 29 Aug
2013 09:48:54 +1000

CONFIRMED: US Claims Against Syria - There is no Evidence

By Tony Cartalucci

August 28, 2013

The Wall Street Journal has confirmed what many suspected, that the
West's so-called "evidence" of the latest alleged "chemical attacks" in
Syria, pinned on the Syrian government are fabrications spun up from the
West's own dubious intelligence agencies.

The Wall Street Journal reveals that the US is citing claims from
Israel's Mossad intelligence agency fed to the Central Intelligence
Agency (CIA), a repeat of the fabrications that led up to the Iraq War,
the Libyan War, and have been used now for 3 years to justify continued
support of extremists operating within and along Syria's borders.

Wall Street Journal's article, "
U.S., Allies Prepare to Act as Syria Intelligence Mounts," states:

One crucial piece of the emerging case came from Israeli spy services,
which provided the Central Intelligence Agency with intelligence from
inside an elite special Syrian unit that oversees Mr. Assad's chemical
weapons, Arab diplomats said. The intelligence, which the CIA was able
to verify, showed that certain types of chemical weapons were moved in
advance to the same Damascus suburbs where the attack allegedly took
place a week ago, Arab diplomats said.

Both Mossad and the CIA are clearly compromised in terms of objectivity
and legitimacy. Neither exists nor is expected to provide impartial
evidence, but rather to facilitate by all means necessary the
self-serving agendas, interests, and objectives of their respective

That both Israel and the United States,
as far back as 2007 have openly conspired together to overthrow the
government of Syria through a carefully engineered sectarian bloodbath,
discredits entirely their respective intelligence agencies. This is
precisely why an impartial, objective third-party investigation has been
called for by the international community and agreed upon by the Syrian
government - a third-party investigation the US has now urged to be
canceled ahead of its planned military strikes.

Wall Street Journal reports:

In an email on Sunday, White House National Security Adviser Susan Rice
told U.N. Ambassador Samantha Power and other top officials that the
U.N. mission was pointless because the chemical weapons evidence already
was conclusive, officials said. The U.S. privately urged the U.N. to
pull the inspectors out, setting the stage for President Barack Obama to
possibly move forward with a military response, officials said.

The US then, not Syria, is attempting a coverup, with fabrications in
place from discredited, compromised intelligence sources and the threat
of impending military strikes that would endanger the UN inspection
team's safety should they fail to end their investigation and withdraw.

The Wall Street Journal also reiterated that the US is planning to fully
sidestep the UN Security Council and proceed with its partners unilaterally:

...if the U.S. chose to strike, it would do so with allies and without
the U.N., in order to sidestep an expected Russian veto.

The US proceeds now with absolute disregard for international law, all
but declaring it has no intention of providing credible evidence of its
accusations against the Syrian government. It is a rush to war with all
the hallmarks of dangerous desperation as the West's proxy forces
collapse before the Syrian military. Western military leaders must
consider the strategic tenants and historical examples regarding the
dangers and folly of haste and imprudence in war - especially war fought
to protect special interests and political agendas rather than to defend

The populations of the West must likewise consider what benefits they
have garnered from the last decade of military conquest their leaders
have indulged in. Crumbling economies gutted to feed the preservation of
special interests and the growing domestic security apparatuses to keep
these interests safe from both domestic and foreign dissent are problems
that will only grow more acute.

Outside of the West, in Moscow, Beijing, and Tehran, leaders must
consider a future where Western special interests can invade with
impunity, without public support, or even the tenuous semblance of
justification being necessary.

(9) Eamonn Fingleton: Aug 21 gas attack was False Flag, because Assad was winning the Civil War (Sept 1, 2013)

Obama's Syria Blink: Who Clipped His Wings?

Eamonn Fingleton

9/01/2013 @ 12:18PM

When a Frenchman behaves out of character, his knowing colleagues
exclaim, “Cherchez la femme!” Look for the woman! The implication is
that he is trying to impress some woman or, worse, is being manipulated
by one (perhaps even his Chère Maman!).

In Washington these days, when politicians behave in perplexing ways, a
more straightforward, English-language maxim usually suffices: Follow
the money.

It is a maxim that has so far gone unconsidered in attempts to explain
President Barack Obama’s extraordinary climb-down on Syria. As of Friday
night, he seemed all set to go it alone in whacking Syrian despot Bashar
al-Assad. Yet by Saturday morning, in one of the more remarkable course
corrections of modern history, he suddenly discovered a need to consult
Congress. And this is a Congress that is no pushover: it is highly
skeptical of further American efforts at “nation-building” in the Middle
East. As Aaron Blake of the Washington Post has pointed out, the chances
are considerable that U.S. lawmakers will veto any proposal to intervene
in Syria. Either way, the decision to bring Congress into the discussion
means delay, and this should dampen the ardor for provocative action.

But how do we explain Obama’s change of heart? None of the stated
explanations makes much sense. Obama himself has suggested that he
feared that going it alone might compromise his ability to enlist
Congress’s support at some later date if, for instance, he needed to
face down Iran. But Congress is surely capable of judging the issues on
a case-by-case basis. At any rate, if Obama was worried about Iran, his
concerns would have been there all along and are unlikely to have
surfaced just on Friday night.

For those who take an inside-the-Beltway view, Obama’s about-face seems
inexplicable. But there is a world beyond the Beltway and an
increasingly powerful one. Although the point is rarely mentioned in the
mainstream press, America is now abjectly dependent on foreign financing
— its net foreign indebtedness has ballooned more than tenfold since
1989 and has recently been increasing by more than $500 billion a year.
  Not one of America’s major creditors – Japan, China, Germany, and
Russia – has any time for Washington’s Middle East policies, though
Japan and Germany sometimes provide token support to avoid an argument.
Of the four, Russia tends to be the only one prepared to speak its mind.
It has repeatedly challenged the United States to make public the
evidence against Assad. Russian leaders moreover are now openly hinting
that the United States does not know what it is doing. Thus the other
day Russia’s deputy prime minister, Dmitry Rogozin, said on Twitter:
“The West behaves towards the Islamic world like a monkey with a hand

For all four major creditor nations, America’s economic situation alone
is a sufficient reason for Obama to back down. After all America’s
finances have now deteriorated to such a point that any time Washington
goes to war it has to go cap in hand to its creditors for the money. The
creditor nations moreover  are acutely aware of something rarely
mentioned in the American media: the world currency system is now
suspended on a gossamer thread. The slightest mishap could precipitate a
run on the dollar and sink the system.

As the examples of Iraq and Afghanistan illustrate, it is easy for
Washington to succumb to highly expensive “mission-creep” once it gets
involved in  surgical” interventions abroad. The Middle East region
moreover is notorious for tit-for-tat reprisals and, even if Assad
himself might forgo cracking back at the United States, one has to
wonder about some of his supporters. For the more ruthless of them, an
obvious strategy would be to take the war to American soil, via — if
they got the chance — a chemical weapons attack on, say, the Washington
Metro or the New York subway. This would put the United States on track
for another vastly expensive war — and a war that could drive the global
financial system over the edge.

The irony in all this is that whoever used chemical weapons at Ghouta,
it almost certainly was not Assad. As Vladimir Putin has pointed out,
all the evidence is that the Ghouta atrocity was a false-flag. Assad has
had everything to lose and nothing to gain from using chemical weapons.
He is close to winning the war, so the last thing he wants is to provide
the United States with a pretext for regime change.

Another irony is that Obama sounds more aggressive in his anti-Assad
rhetoric now than he did up to Friday. But that’s politics, and anyone
who judges politicians on their words rather than their deeds probably
still believes in the tooth fairy. Obama’s about-face very dramatically
reduces the risk of war — and that is the point.

Assuming that foreign creditors had something to do with Obama’s
extraordinary climb-down, how might their pressure have been exerted?
Nearly three decades of watching the world from a base in Tokyo tells me
that the pressure would be quite indirect. In the East, the wise hawk
hides his talons.  Luckily in these “globalist” times, Washington and
New York are full of high-level shills whose stock in trade is
manipulating the U.S. government on behalf of foreign interests. On this
occasion a key gambit for both Tokyo and Beijing would probably be to
depute top American investment bankers to do the talking — and, of
course, do it behind closed doors. (As John Pierpont Morgan said in a
slightly different context, that’s what doors are for!) They would need
to say little beyond mentioning the fragility of  U.S. Treasury bond
market —  and asking how home owners would feel if interest rates
suddenly were to double.

(10) UN debate stalls US attack on Syria (Aug 29, 2013)

By Kaveh L Afrasiabi

Aug 29, '13

NEW YORK - At the United Nations, despite the threat of a United States
missile attack on Syria, momentum is actually shifting away from
imminent action in favor of a more patient "wait and see" approach
spearheaded by the secretary-general Ban Ki-Moon.

On Wednesday, the Russian and Chinese delegation walked out of a
Security Council emergency meeting on Syria triggered by a United
Kingdom draft resolution calling for humanitarian military intervention
in Syria "to save civilian lives" in light of the recent ghastly
chemical weapon attack that the US, UK and France insist without a
shadow of doubt was the work of the Syrian regime.

That opinion is not shared by many UN member states, including some
non-permanent members of the Security Council, who prefer to defer a
judgment until the UN investigation team in Syria delivers its report;
according to Ban, those investigators "need four days" to complete their

The UK's introduction of the resolution "put a mini-brake" on the
possibility of an attack, according to a South American diplomat whose
country is at present a member of the Security Council and spoke to the
author on the condition of anonymity. "We don't want another Iraq war
fiasco," the Latin diplomat insisted, alluding to the "WMD (weapons of
mass destruction) hoax" of the 2003 US-led invasion of a sovereign Arab

Another European diplomat relayed the same sentiment, adding that the
majority of European Union member states "including Germany, Austria,
Italy and others" are adamantly opposed to any "preemptory strike" on
Syria based on "inconclusive evidence''.

Meanwhile, Syria's envoy to the UN presented his government's case
against any attack and claimed that the rebels have launched three new
chemical attacks against the Syrian military, asking the UN to
investigate those areas where it claimed the attacks took place.
Damascus's insistence that the rebels were behind the gas attack on
August 21 in a Damascus suburb that killed hundreds has been flatly
rejected by the US yet somewhat endorsed by a member of the UN
Commission of Inquiry on Syria, Carla del Ponte, who has twice - on
Monday as well as May 6, 2013 - stated there is evidence that the rebels
have used sarin gas. ...

(11) UK parliament votes against Syria war plan, mindful of Iraq WMD deception (Aug 29, 2013)

Iraq war ghosts end UK plans to take part in Syria action

By Andrew Osborn and Guy Faulconbridge

LONDON | Thu Aug 29, 2013 9:07pm EDT

(Reuters) - Prime Minister David Cameron's plans for joining a potential
military strike on Syria were thwarted on Thursday night after Britain's
parliament narrowly voted against a government motion to authorise such
action in principle.

In a humiliating defeat for the British leader likely to damage
Cameron's hopes of being re-elected in 2015 and set back traditionally
strong U.S.-UK relations, parliament defied Cameron by 285 to 272 votes.

Commentators said it was the first time a British prime minister had
lost a vote on war since 1782. [...]

Cameron's defeat calls into question Britain's traditional role as the
United States' most reliable military ally, a role that Cameron worked
hard to cement, and underscores how bitter the legacy of Britain's
involvement in the 2003 Iraq war remains a decade later.

On that occasion, Britain, under the leadership of then-Prime Minister
Tony Blair, helped the United States invade Iraq after asserting -
wrongly, it later turned out - that President Saddam Hussein possessed
weapons of mass destruction. [...]

(12) Geoffrey Robertson, a former UN judge, calls for the Bombing of Syria (Aug 30, 2013)

Three Key Questions on Syria

by Geoffrey Robertson Aug 30, 2013 3:15 PM EDT

Now that the U.K. has stunningly backed out of intervention on Syria,
the U.S., France, and others must answer these legal quagmires before
committing to strikes.

David Cameron thought that recalling his Parliament to approve the
bombing of Assad for using chemical weapons would be a slam dunk. The
traditional British reaction to outrages by Johnny Foreigner has been to
“send a gunboat”—especially if this can be done at U.S. expense.

What Cameron failed to realize was the depth of his country’s guilt over
being suckered by Tony Blair into Bush’s war on Saddam over nonexistent
WMDs. This guilt has deepened over a decade with every day’s report from
Iraq of fresh civilian casualties. So a tipping point came last Tuesday
when Blair himself, in a Murdoch mouthpiece (The Times) called for the
bombing of Syria: politicians of all parties began to be spooked by
their memories of being deceived by fabricated intelligence in dodgy
dossiers. “That was George W. Bush, this is Barack Obama” cried one
veteran (Paddy Ashdown) in exasperation, but in vain. Britain is unwilling.

That does not relieve the U.S., and other allies like France unburdened
by Iraqi war guilt, of the urgent need to answer three legal questions:

First, can force be used, without Security Council approval, to deter
Syria from perpetrating further crimes against humanity? Secondly, how
can culpability for mass-murdering a thousand civilians by poison gas be
proved against the Assad regime beyond reasonable doubt? Thirdly, what
punishment can NATO and the Arab League mete out to that government, if
it is guilty, to deter further use of chemical weapons without causing
more civilian casualties or tilting the civil war in Syria in favor of
the opposition?

The first question is easy to answer. There is and always has been a
right to intervene to stop or deter an ongoing crime against humanity.
This was asserted in terms by Oliver Cromwell and his foreign secretary
(the poet Milton) as long ago as 1655, when he threatened to invade
Savoy unless its Duke stopped killing Protestants who refused to convert
to Catholicism. Britain exercised its right of humanitarian intervention
when it stopped the slave trade by intercepting foreign ships and
attacking foreign ports, and it led a coalition of the willing to end
Ottoman atrocities (and liberate Greece) in 1827. As Theodore Roosevelt
put it in 1904 when justifying the American intervention to stop Spanish
atrocities in Cuba, there are occasions when “the indignant pity of the
civilized world” imposes a duty to intervene “against crimes of peculiar

All this was long before the U.N. Charter, which did not affect the
right of member states to stop an international crime. Idi Amin’s mass
murder was ended by an invasion unauthorized by the Security Council, as
was genocide and mass rape in Bangladesh. NATO set up safe havens to
protect the Kurds in defiance of Saddam's Iraqi sovereignty, without
bothering to endure a Russian and Chinese veto at the Security Council.

Kosovo is a good example of legitimate NATO action to end a crime
against humanity—that of Milosevic’s ethnic cleansing. With the council
again pole-axed by the Russian veto, NATO simply began bombing and
Russia was forced to move a motion to condemn it, which failed
miserably. If NATO (minus the U.K. but plus Turkey) and the Arab League
can find a way to punish Assad, which does not involve collateral
damage, they should get on with it and leave Russia on the back foot,
without a Security Council resolution to condemn their action.
International law does not prevent action to stop international crime.

But, in answer to the second question, there must be proof beyond
reasonable doubt that Assad’s forces were responsible for such a crime.
The U.K. Attorney General talks of “convincing evidence generally
accepted by the international community,” but this is not sufficient.
The Security Council itself is a hopeless tribunal for deciding guilt:
Colin Powell deceived the council (and, it seems, himself) with his
“evidence” for Saddam’s WMDs. The world is sick of “dodgy dossiers” and
does not believe MI6 and the CIA without proof, preferably by way of a
reasoned judgment from a respected tribunal. There could be a decision
by a panel of independent international judges convened by the Secretary
General to decide on Syrian government culpability, excluding any
possibility that the victims seen on television are graduates of the al
Qaeda school of acting.

The key concern of the U.K. Parliament, when on Thursday night it
refused to approve the use of force against Syria, was over Assad’s
guilt. A Joint Intelligence Committee assessment, from open sources and
seeming (but Western-minded) logic, concluded that this was “very
likely”: 75 percent to 85 percent. That would be enough to win a civil
action for damages on the balance of probabilities but not to convict of
a crime “beyond reasonable doubt.” That necessary standard of proof may
be forthcoming from the weapons inspectors (despite John Kerry’s doubts)
when they report in a few weeks’ time. So it might be prudent for the
Obama administration wait for the weapons inspectors, unlike George W.
Bush in 2003, and organize a punishment that fits the crime only when
the crime can be proved? If there is proof in “secret” sources (e.g.,
telephone traffic between Assad and his generals, intercepted by NSA or
the Israelis) then the transcripts will just have to be made public:
after Iraq there can be no reliance on official reassurances unless the
public can examine the evidence for itself.

International law requires that any intervention to stop crimes against
humanity must be strictly limited and “proportionate” to the objective,
i.e., appropriate to and logically connected with its achievement and
not such as might promote regime change or the death of more civilians.
This is easy to state, as a legal proposition, but may in logistical
terms be impossible to achieve. (Even an attempt to destroy a
chemical-weapons dump may be disastrous, if the poison gas is released
into the atmosphere.) How many military bases are to be attacked? Is
NATO going to destroy $1 billion of military equipment and threaten
Assad that, if chemical weapons are used again, it will destroy $25
billion worth? It is these imponderables that international law cannot

The fundamental rules of civilized humanity now include a prohibition on
the use of poison gas against civilians—a prohibition barbarically
breached by Saddam Hussein in 1988 when he gassed 7,000 Kurds at
Halebja, only to be rewarded the following year by a U.S. trade mission
led by Donald Rumsfeld. If we are serious about banning this horrific
war crime, then the ban must be enforced. That is the duty of the
Security Council, under Chapter VII of the U.N. Charter. But the council
is stymied because Russia irresponsibly uses its “Great Power” veto to
protect its investment in Assad’s military rule. The responsibility to
protect Syria’s civilians against becoming victims of crimes by their
own state thus devolves upon regional organizations like NATO and the
Arab League.

That Assad and his generals are war criminals has been clear ever since
they gunned down the first thousand or so peaceful protesters before the
civil war started. Courageous protesters then held up banners demanding
“Assad to the Hague.” But the Security Council turned its back on them.
Not one of its members bothered to suggest that the situation in Syria
should be referred to the Prosecutor of the International Criminal
Court. Two years on, the civil war has claimed over 100,000 victims and
has no end in sight. Diplomacy and United Nations negotiations, from
Kofi Annan to Lakhdar Brahimi, have all failed. NATO strikes to punish
chemical-weapons use will not end this war and may have unforeseen
consequences. But at least such action will create the precedent that
should have been set at Halebja, providing a basis for deterring
dictators not only from using chemical weapons but also from stockpiling
them in the first place.

Geoffrey Robertson is a former U.N. appeals judge and author of Crimes
Against Humanity: The Struggle for Global Justice (Penguin, and the New
Press). His latest book is Mullahs without Mercy: Human Right and
Nuclear Weapons (Biteback/ Random House, 2012).

(13) G20 leaders speak out against US-led strike on Syria (Sept 6, 2013)

G20 Syria divide: World's largest nations speak out against US-led strike

Published time: September 06, 2013 22:47
Edited time: September 07, 2013 13:34

As leaders of countries making up half of the worldâ?™s population
firmly opposed military action against Syria without a UN mandate, the
US kept pushing for a strike, claiming that many countries represented
at the G20 summit were â?œcomfortableâ? with it.

Although discussion of the Syrian conflict was never officially on the
G20 agenda, world leaders used their statements and speeches to outline
their stance on a possible US-led military strike against the government
of Syrian President Bashar Assad.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has dismissed the notion that there was
a 50/50 split of opinion on the issue, alluding that leaders of the
majority of the worldâ?™s largest economies clearly stated their
opposition to military intervention in Syria.

Russia, China, India, Indonesia, Argentina, Brazil, and South Africa
were among the countries that openly spoke out against military action
not authorized by the UN Security Council, Putin revealed.

Putin himself said that he believes the alleged chemical weapons attack
was nothing more than "a provocation on behalf of the armed insurgents
in hope of the help from the outside, from the countries which supported
them from day one."

[...] China has consistently opposed a military solution for the Syrian
crisis, joining Russia in its belief that any action must be based on
the UN investigation and authorized by the UN Security Council.

(14) G20 leaders reject attack on Syria over Chemical Weapons; Assad was framed (Sept 8, 2013)

From: Paul de Burgh-Day <>
Date: Mon, 9 Sep 2013 10:46:45 +1000

The West Dethroned

By Paul Craig Roberts

“The European race’s last three hundred years of evolutionary progress
have all come down to nothing but four words: selfishness, slaughter,
shamelessness and corruption.”
  Yan Fu

September 08, 2013  Information Clearing House

It only took the rest of the world 300 years to catch on to the evil
that masquerades as “western civilization,” or perhaps it only took the
rise of new powers with the confidence to state the obvious. Anyone
doubtful of America’s responsibility for the evil needs to read The
Untold History of the United States by Oliver Stone and Peter Kuznick.

The “New American Century” proclaimed by the neoconservatives came to an
abrupt end on September 6 at the G20 meeting in Russia. The leaders of
most of the world’s peoples told Obama that they do not believe him and
that it is a violation of international law if the US government attacks
Syria without UN authorization.

Putin told the assembled world leaders that the chemical weapons attack
was “a provocation on behalf of the armed insurgents in hope of the help
from the outside, from the countries which supported them from day one.”
In other words, Israel, Saudi Arabia, and Washington--the axis of evil.

China, India, South Africa, Brazil, Indonesia, and Argentina joined
Putin in affirming that a leader who commits military aggression without
the approval of the UN Security Council puts himself “outside of law.” [...]

Washington represents Israel and a handful of powerful organized private
interests. Washington represents no one else. Washington is a plague
upon the American people and a plague upon the world.

(15) AIPAC to lobby Congress for Syria strike (Israel News, Sept 6, 2013),7340,L-4426658,00.html

AIPAC to lobby Congress for Syria strike

American Israeli Political Activity Committee to attempt to persuade
Congress to vote in favor of attack, as constituents urge Congress to
vote against intervention

Yitzhak Benhorin

Israel News
Published: 09.06.13, 21:16

WASHINGTON – Though US Congress is pressured by the American public to
vote against a US military intervention in Syria, Israel’s most ardent
supporters in AIPAC urge Congress representatives to vote in favor of an

US President Barack Obama said on Friday he will take his case for
military action in Syria directly to the American people next week and
acknowledged his problems in convincing Congress to back strikes against
Syrian President Bashar Assad's forces.

According to a Gallop poll issued Friday, 36% of Americans support a US
military action against the Syrian government for its suspected use of
chemical weapons, 51% oppose and 13% are unsure.

In comparison, though the majority of the American public is against a
strike in Syria, most of the American people were in support of a
military intervention in Iraq in 2003 – 59% – and in Afghanistan in 2001
– a staggering 82%.

Meeting constituents in Arizona, Senator John McCain faced an
oppositional crowd, urging him to vote against a strike.

At the moment, most congressional representatives are against a US
intervention in Syria.

Israel has refrained in the past from pushing US into war, and Jerusalem
and AIPAC have thus far kept silent regarding Syria, but in recent days
Israel decided to voice its support of an attack.

After Israel's ambassador to Washington Michael Oren and AIPAC noted
that military action would send a message to Assad's supporters – Iran
and Hezbollah – that US won't tolerate use of weapons of mass
destruction, some 250 Jewish leaders and AIPAC activists, according to
the Politico website, intend to storm the halls on Capitol Hill
beginning next week to persuade lawmakers that Congress must adopt the
resolution authorizing US strikes against Syria.

(16) Obama "red line" would use Chemical Weapons as a Causus Belli; but Congress defied AIPAC (Sept 14, 2013)

September 14, 2013

A Short History Of The War On Syria - 2006-2014

In 2006 the U.S. was at war in Iraq. Some of the enemy forces it very
much struggled to fight against were coming in through Syria. The same
year Israel lost a war against Hizbullah. Its armored forces were
ambushed whenever they tried to push deeper into Lebanon while Hizbullah
managed to continuously fire rockets against Israeli army position and
cities. Hizbullah receives supply for its missile force from Syria and
from Iran through Syria. Its long-term plans to attack Iran and to
thereby keep supremacy in the Middle East depend on severing Hizbullah's
supply routes. The sectarian Sunni Gulf countries, mainly Saudi Arabia,
saw their Sunni brethren defeat in Iraq and a Shia government, supported
by Iran, taking over the country. All these countries had reason to
fight Syria. There were also economic reasons to subvert an independent
Syria. A gas pipeline from Qatar to Turkey was competing with one from
Iran to Syria. Large finds of natural gas in the coastal waters of
Israel and Lebanon make such finds in Syrian waters quite plausible.

In late 2006 the United States started to finance an external opposition
to Syria's ruling Baath party. Those exiles were largely members of the
Muslim Brotherhood which had been evicted from Syria after their bloody
uprising against the Syrian state between 1976 and 1982 had failed. In
2007 a plan for regime change in Syria was agreed upon between the
United States, Israel and Saudi Arabia. The aim was to destroy the
"resistance" alliance of Hizbullah, Syria and Iran:

     To undermine Iran, which is predominantly Shiite, the Bush
Administration has decided, in effect, to reconfigure its priorities in
the Middle East. In Lebanon, the Administration has cooperated with
Saudi Arabia's government, which is Sunni, in clandestine operations
that are intended to weaken Hezbollah, the Shiite organization that is
backed by Iran. The U.S. has also taken part in clandestine operations
aimed at Iran and its ally Syria. A by-product of these activities has
been the bolstering of Sunni extremist groups that espouse a militant
vision of Islam and are hostile to America and sympathetic to Al Qaeda.

By 2011 three years of drought, caused by global warming and Turkey's
upstream dams and irrigation projects, had weakened the Syrian economy.
Large parts of the poor rural population lost their means of living and
moved into the cities. They provided the fertile ground needed to launch
an uprising against the Syrian state.

The U.S. part in the plan was to provide the media and "global opinion"
cover for the insurgency. To that purpose it used the tool from its
"color revolution" tool box. "Citizen journalists" were recruited,
trained and provided with the video and communication equipment needed
for media propagandizing. Others were trained in organizing "peaceful
civil demonstrations". The Saudis took care of the darker part of the
plan. They financed and armed rebel groups, often related to the exiled
Muslim Brotherhood, which had the task to instigate a wider insurgency
by taking on government forces as well as the peaceful demonstrators.A
main part of the scheme was the introduction of a sectarian view that
would split the largely secular Syria into several constituencies.

A local disturbance in Deraa near the Jordanian border was used to
launch the uprising. Peaceful demonstration were held but soon shots
were fired towards the police as well as towards the demonstrators.
Inevitably both sides escalated. Groups armed by the Saudis target the
government forces. Having colleagues killed and wounded the government
forces retaliated against the demonstrators. Some of those took up arms
themselves and fought the government. "Citizen journalist" propagandized
the victims on the "peaceful demonstrators" side but never mentioned
those on the government side. "Western" media agencies followed that
scheme. Cells in other Syrian cities were activated. Again "peaceful
demonstrations" were cover for "a third force", as the Arab League
investigation commission named it, which fought against government
forces and also instigated the demonstrators to take up arms. The U.S.
government helped by issuing its own propaganda for example by lying
about Syrian artillery deployment against demonstrators when, at that
point, none had yet happened. U.S. para-government organizations, Avaaz,
Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, joined the campaign
against the Syrian government. Cyber attacks against the Syrian
government news agency helped to suppress the other side of the story.
Up to today the website of the official Syrian Arab News Agency,, is purged from Google search results.

It was soon visible that the planned for "color revolution" strategy did
not work. The Syrian state was more resilient than had been perceived.
The Syrian president Bashar al-Assad was more beloved and respected than
the insurgency instigators ever expected. He also fulfilled many of the
demands the serious protesters had. The constitution was rewritten, new
parties were allowed, elections held and the most abusive security
forces came under stricter control. The big cities, even though
predominantly Sunni, did not support or join the increasing violent and
sectarian fighters. Defections from the Syrian army and from political
cadres were few and unimportant. For some time the Syrian economy held
up quite well. The general population as well as the government rejected
the scheme of a sectarian divide.

The enemies of Syria had to increase their commitment. Saudi Arabia and
Qatar used all their capabilities to recruit foreign Jihadis willing to
fight in Syria. The CIA, using Saudi money, brought in weapons and
thousands of tons of ammunition from all over the world. Insurgency
groups were provided with training and battlefield intelligence. A group
of exiles was build up as external future government.

The Syrian government had to retreat to conserve its forces. Major parts
of rural Syria were taken over by the insurgency. The population there
fled over the boarders or into the cities. Where the insurgency foraged
into parts of cities it was difficult to dislodge without creating
immense damage to the infrastructure and buildings. But the Syrian
government learned its lessons. With the help of its friends from Iran
and Hizbullah its army units were retrained to fight against insurgency
forces. Paramilitary units of locals were build up to take over those
parts the army had cleaned of insurgents. Russia kept the supplies coming.

On the side of the insurgent instigators some things started to go
wrong. The Jihadis Saudi Arabia provided were good fighters but
ideologues that did not fit into the Syrian social context. They started
to clash with the population as well as with local fighters. Just today
a large fight is taking place in north-east Syria between Jihadi groups
and local bandits. Arguments with al-Qaeda inspired forces over weapon
supplies from Libya killed the U.S. ambassador in Benghazi. Despite
being revamped at least three times the planned for government in exile
group proved ineffective due to bickering and infighting between its
sponsors. The "peaceful protesters" media campaign broke down as more
and more stories and pictures from the massacres committed by the
insurgency came to light. The population in those countries that
supported the insurgency turned against any involvement in the conflict.

When it became likely that the insurgency might not be able to overcome
the Syrian army U.S. president Obama introduced his "red line" over
chemical weapon use. This was an invitation to the insurgency side to
introduce chemical weapons to the battlefield, to then blame the Syrian
government and to thereby create a U.S. intervention on their side. They
tried to do so for a few times but Obama was then not yet willing to
commit outright force. To prevent the upcoming Jihadis from taking over
Syria should the Assad government fall, the U.S. planed to have U.S.
trained "moderate" fighters take the lead in the fight especially in the
capital Damascus.

In mid August 2013 a group of 300 CIA trained fighters entered Syria
from Jordan. A second group followed soon after. (The Obama
administration is now trying to change that date.) Their task was to go
to Damascus and to take the fight to the Syrian government itself. They
were obliterated on their way to Damascus' suburbs. Without U.S.air
support, like it provided in Libya, further use of U.S. trained forces
would have been useless. The "red-line" plan was activated. On August 21
some chemical stuff was released in some Damascus suburbs. Immediately
an immense number of videos showing rows of alleged dead were uploaded
to Youtube. But those videos did not show the right symptoms for a Sarin
attack nor did they show the medical attention one would expect in the
hours immediately following a real chemical weapon attack. It was
clearly a false flag incident. But Obama tried to convince the world
that the Syrian government had indeed used chemical weapons and released
some flimsy claims of evidence but no evidence at all. He called on
allies to join him for a military intervention.

The British parliament voted down a request from its government to join
the war. The British population, like in the U.S., had no stomach for
another lengthy war. Obama was in a catch 22 situation. He could go to
war without asking Congress and would then face a possible impeachment
from a very hostile House, or he could ask Congress for a vote for war.
He soon climbed down from his "I'll wage this war" position and decided
to go to Congress. The U.S. population was widely against another Middle
East war as was the U.S. military. Pressured by their constituents and
in view of unconvincing claims of evidence about the "massacre" Congress
denied Obama its vote for war. In this Congress even defied AIPAC and
the Israel lobby lost its first fight in over 22 years.

Obama has an urgent domestic agenda to implement. There is Obama-care,
the budget and an upcoming fight over on the debt ceiling. Having lost
in Congress Obama could not, solely on his assumed presidential powers,
go to war. He would have risked an immediate impeachment process and a
lame duck status for the rest of his presidency. What was he to do?

There the white Russian knight, Vladimir Putin, rode to Obama's rescue.

Putin offered a deal: Syria would agree to give up its unconventional
weapons and the U.S. would agree for the Syrian government and president
Assad to stay in power. The idea goes back to August 2012 when former
Sen. Richard Lugar had proposed such a deal in Moscow.

Syria's chemical weapon are pretty useless on the tactical battlefield.
But their potential use against Israeli population centers had proven to
be a quite useful strategic deterrence. But now those weapons had become
a liability. Instead of preventing an external war owning them was now
threatening to invite one. At the same time Hizbullah's conventional
missile force had already proven to be a good deterrent without the
problems unconventional weapons carry with them. Syria can give away its
current strategic deterrence and trust its allies in Iran and Russia to
provide an equally effective replacement.

Obama took the rescue line Putin threw to him. He knew that openly
entering the Syrian war against a well prepared opponent and its allies
would mean a long and uncertain war. He was in a lose-lose situation but
could now come out of it and look like a winner. He rescues Israel from
the threat of a gas attack and cashes in on a win from his peace-prized
hobby horse - WMD-disarmament. [...]

Posted by b on September 14, 2013 at 01:15 PM |

(17) US Media refused to publish Seymour Hersh expose of US lies on Aug. 21 Syrian gas attack

Media blacks out Seymour Hersh expose of US lies on Syrian gas attack

By Patrick Martin

8 April 2014

Nearly two days after the London Review of Books published a lengthy
exposé by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh detailing
efforts by the Turkish government to stage a provocation to bring the US
military directly into the civil war in Syria, the US media has blacked
out the report.

Hersh, who has authored groundbreaking investigative reports uncovering
US atrocities, including the My Lai massacre during the Vietnam War and
the torture of prisoners at Abu Ghraib during the Iraq war, titled his
article on last August’s sarin gas attack outside of Damascus “The Red
Line and the Rat Line.”

The “red line” refers to President Obama’s threat to attack Syria if the
government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad used chemical weapons.
The “rat line” was a CIA-organized supply chain running from Benghazi,
Libya through southern Turkey and into Syria, which was used to smuggle
weapons to the Syrian “rebels.”

The article describes efforts by the Turkish government of Prime
Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan to assist Syrian “rebels” of the al-Nusra
Front, an Islamist force linked to Al Qaeda, in staging the poison gas
attack on Ghouta on August 21, 2013.

Hundreds died in the atrocity, which the Obama White House seized on as
a casus belli to bomb Syria. Faced with deep divisions within the
American state and problems mobilizing US allies in Europe, and broad
popular opposition to a new war in the Middle East, Obama eventually
pulled back and in September accepted a face-saving deal brokered by
Russian President Vladimir Putin for the supervised destruction of
Syria’s chemical weapons stocks.

The Syrian government denied responsibility for the Ghouta attack and
blamed the “rebels,” who had every reason to carry out the action, which
coincided with the arrival of United Nations weapons inspectors in
Damascus to investigate previous gas attacks. At the time of the attack,
Syrian government forces were retaking areas previously held by the
US-backed opposition, which was in disarray and on the point of
collapse. It desperately needed a supposed government atrocity to
provide a pretext for direct US military intervention against the Assad

Hersh’s report substantiates the Syrian government’s claims, using
documents and accounts from US intelligence and military sources. It
also provides evidence that President Obama, Secretary of State John
Kerry and other US officials knowingly lied to the American people when
they insisted that only the Assad regime could have carried out the
Ghouta attack and that US intelligence agencies had proof that Syrian
government forces were responsible. (See: New exposé by Seymour Hersh:
Turkey staged gas attack to provoke US war on Syria)

Last December, Hersh published an initial account of the Ghouta attack,
which noted the discrepancies and contradictions in the official US
accounts and exposed media propaganda such as the now-retracted claim by
the New York Times that its own technical analysis of the attack proved
that only the Syrian military could have fired the gas shells. Hersh’s
conclusion at that time, reflected in the headline “Whose Sarin?” was
that it was still unclear who was responsible for the gas attack.

The latest account provides an important new finding—that the Turkish
government worked with the al-Nusra Front to engineer the gas attack and
blame it on Assad in order to provide a means for the Obama
administration to override popular opposition to another US war in the
Middle East and launch military action in Syria.

A former intelligence official told Hersh, “We now know it was a covert
action planned by Erdogan’s people to push Obama over the red line …
They had to escalate to a gas attack in or near Damascus … The deal was
to do something spectacular.”

Hersh has been unable to get his reports published by major American
media outlets. Both of his Syrian exposés appeared in the online edition
of the London Review of Books, not in the New Yorker, where he was
published for many years, or any daily newspaper.

Since the new article was posted early Sunday morning, there has been
total silence in the mainstream US press. The New York Times and
Washington Post, the two leading dailies, said nothing. The Times
published a long account Monday of fighting in Syria with no mention of
Hersh’s report.

The main British dailies have also been silent. The Guardian, in
addition to censoring Hersh, published a long account of a
self-justifying interview on BBC Radio 4 by the notorious liar and war
criminal Tony Blair, the former prime minister, defending the Iraq war
and advocating military action in Syria.

The article, written by the newspaper’s chief political correspondent
Nicholas Watt, goes so far as to note Blair’s argument that the use of
sarin gas at Ghouta was sufficient reason to attack Syria, without
referencing Hersh’s exposure of this attack as a provocation, published
just 24 hours earlier. The cover-up is conscious and deliberate.

The Turkish media has commented on the Hersh report with a blizzard of
vituperation and attempts to defend the Erdogan government. This comes
despite the fact that the government recently shut off access to YouTube
after someone posted a video of a secret meeting of government officials
at which the head of Turkish intelligence discussed staging another
provocation inside Syria, such as an attack on a mosque, to provide a
pretext for military intervention.

The web site of the Turkish newspaper Zaman published an email sent by
the White House press office Sunday night, which read: “We have seen Mr.
Hersh’s latest story, which is based solely on information from unnamed
sources and which reaches conclusions about the August 21 chemical
weapons attack in Syria that are completely off-base.” Zaman also cites
“Turkish diplomatic sources” declaring, “These claims are baseless. We
do not take it seriously.”

The left-liberal magazine Nation commented briefly on Hersh’s first
article on the Ghouta attack last December. The article by Greg Mitchell
took a noncommittal position, declaring, “Hersh’s edgy investigative
reporting is usually proven right, of course, but in recent years, one
must admit, sometimes wrong. For myself, I’ve never claimed a belief
that rebels, not the Assad forces, launched the attacks …” The Nation
has not commented on the latest Hersh report.

Also silent is the pseudo-left International Socialist Organization,
which has campaigned relentlessly to portray the US stooges and Al
Qaeda-linked terrorists in the Syrian “rebel” camp as a mass popular
revolutionary movement. The ISO publication Socialist Worker swallowed
the Ghouta provocation hook, line and sinker, and has not reported or
commented on either of Hersh’s exposés on the question.

(18) British Lab showed Aug. 21 Sarin was not Assad's but Al Nusra's - Seymour Hersh, LRB

Vol. 36 No. 8 · 17 April 2014
pages 21-24 | 5870 words

The Red Line and the Rat Line

Seymour M. Hersh on Obama, Erdogan and the Syrian rebels

In 2011 Barack Obama led an allied military intervention in Libya
without consulting the US Congress. Last August, after the sarin attack
on the Damascus suburb of Ghouta, he was ready to launch an allied air
strike, this time to punish the Syrian government for allegedly crossing
the 'red line' he had set in 2012 on the use of chemical weapons.[*]
Then with less than two days to go before the planned strike, he
announced that he would seek congressional approval for the
intervention. The strike was postponed as Congress prepared for
hearings, and subsequently cancelled when Obama accepted Assad's offer
to relinquish his chemical arsenal in a deal brokered by Russia. Why did
Obama delay and then relent on Syria when he was not shy about rushing
into Libya? The answer lies in a clash between those in the
administration who were committed to enforcing the red line, and
military leaders who thought that going to war was both unjustified and
potentially disastrous.

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.
The British report heightened doubts inside the Pentagon; the joint
chiefs were already preparing to warn Obama that his plans for a
far-reaching bomb and missile attack on Syria's infrastructure could
lead to a wider war in the Middle East. As a consequence the American
officers delivered a last-minute caution to the president, which, in
their view, eventually led to his cancelling the attack.

For months there had been acute concern among senior military leaders
and the intelligence community about the role in the war of Syria's
neighbours, especially Turkey. Prime Minister Recep Erdogan was known to
be supporting the al-Nusra Front, a jihadist faction among the rebel
opposition, as well as other Islamist rebel groups. 'We knew there were
some in the Turkish government,' a former senior US intelligence
official, who has access to current intelligence, told me, 'who believed
they could get Assad's nuts in a vice by dabbling with a sarin attack
inside Syria – and forcing Obama to make good on his red line threat.'

The joint chiefs also knew that the Obama administration's public claims
that only the Syrian army had access to sarin were wrong. 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'. (According to a Defense
Department consultant, US intelligence has long known that al-Qaida
experimented with chemical weapons, and has a video of one of its gas
experiments with dogs.) The DIA paper went on: 'Previous IC
[intelligence community] focus had been almost entirely on Syrian CW
[chemical weapons] stockpiles; now we see ANF attempting to make its own
CW … Al-Nusrah Front's relative freedom of operation within Syria leads
us to assess the group's CW aspirations will be difficult to disrupt in
the future.' The paper drew on classified intelligence from numerous
agencies: 'Turkey and Saudi-based chemical facilitators,' it said, 'were
attempting to obtain sarin precursors in bulk, tens of kilograms, likely
for the anticipated large scale production effort in Syria.' (Asked
about the DIA paper, a spokesperson for the director of national
intelligence said: 'No such paper was ever requested or produced by
intelligence community analysts.')

Last May, more than ten members of the al-Nusra Front were arrested in
southern Turkey with what local police told the press were two kilograms
of sarin. In a 130-page indictment the group was accused of attempting
to purchase fuses, piping for the construction of mortars, and chemical
precursors for sarin. Five of those arrested were freed after a brief
detention. The others, including the ringleader, Haytham Qassab, for
whom the prosecutor requested a prison sentence of 25 years, were
released pending trial. In the meantime the Turkish press has been rife
with speculation that the Erdogan administration has been covering up
the extent of its involvement with the rebels. In a news conference last
summer, Aydin Sezgin, Turkey's ambassador to Moscow, dismissed the
arrests and claimed to reporters that the recovered 'sarin' was merely

The DIA paper took the arrests as evidence that al-Nusra was expanding
its access to chemical weapons. It said Qassab had 'self-identified' as
a member of al-Nusra, and that he was directly connected to
Abd-al-Ghani, the 'ANF emir for military manufacturing'. Qassab and his
associate Khalid Ousta worked with Halit Unalkaya, an employee of a
Turkish firm called Zirve Export, who provided 'price quotes for bulk
quantities of sarin precursors'. Abd-al-Ghani's plan was for two
associates to 'perfect a process for making sarin, then go to Syria to
train others to begin large scale production at an unidentified lab in
Syria'. The DIA paper said that one of his operatives had purchased a
precursor on the 'Baghdad chemical market', which 'has supported at
least seven CW efforts since 2004'.

A series of chemical weapon attacks in March and April 2013 was
investigated over the next few months by a special UN mission to Syria.
A person with close knowledge of the UN's activity in Syria told me that
there was evidence linking the Syrian opposition to the first gas
attack, on 19 March in Khan Al-Assal, a village near Aleppo. In its
final report in December, the mission said that at least 19 civilians
and one Syrian soldier were among the fatalities, along with scores of
injured. It had no mandate to assign responsibility for the attack, but
the person with knowledge of the UN's activities said: 'Investigators
interviewed the people who were there, including the doctors who treated
the victims. It was clear that the rebels used the gas. It did not come
out in public because no one wanted to know.'

In the months before the attacks began, a former senior Defense
Department official told me, the DIA was circulating a daily classified
report known as SYRUP on all intelligence related to the Syrian
conflict, including material on chemical weapons. But in the spring,
distribution of the part of the report concerning chemical weapons was
severely curtailed on the orders of Denis McDonough, the White House
chief of staff. 'Something was in there that triggered a shit fit by
McDonough,' the former Defense Department official said. 'One day it was
a huge deal, and then, after the March and April sarin attacks' – he
snapped his fingers – 'it's no longer there.' The decision to restrict
distribution was made as the joint chiefs ordered intensive contingency
planning for a possible ground invasion of Syria whose primary objective
would be the elimination of chemical weapons.

The former intelligence official said that many in the US national
security establishment had long been troubled by the president's red
line: 'The joint chiefs asked the White House, "What does red line mean?
How does that translate into military orders? Troops on the ground?
Massive strike? Limited strike?" They tasked military intelligence to
study how we could carry out the threat. They learned nothing more about
the president's reasoning.'

In the aftermath of the 21 August attack Obama ordered the Pentagon to
draw up targets for bombing. Early in the process, the former
intelligence official said, 'the White House rejected 35 target sets
provided by the joint chiefs of staff as being insufficiently "painful"
to the Assad regime.' The original targets included only military sites
and nothing by way of civilian infrastructure. Under White House
pressure, the US attack plan evolved into 'a monster strike': two wings
of B-52 bombers were shifted to airbases close to Syria, and navy
submarines and ships equipped with Tomahawk missiles were deployed.
'Every day the target list was getting longer,' the former intelligence
official told me. 'The Pentagon planners said we can't use only
Tomahawks to strike at Syria's missile sites because their warheads are
buried too far below ground, so the two B-52 air wings with two-thousand
pound bombs were assigned to the mission. Then we'll need standby
search-and-rescue teams to recover downed pilots and drones for target
selection. It became huge.' The new target list was meant to 'completely
eradicate any military capabilities Assad had', the former intelligence
official said. The core targets included electric power grids, oil and
gas depots, all known logistic and weapons depots, all known command and
control facilities, and all known military and intelligence buildings.

Britain and France were both to play a part. On 29 August, the day
Parliament voted against Cameron's bid to join the intervention, the
Guardian reported that he had already ordered six RAF Typhoon fighter
jets to be deployed to Cyprus, and had volunteered a submarine capable
of launching Tomahawk missiles. The French air force – a crucial player
in the 2011 strikes on Libya – was deeply committed, according to an
account in Le Nouvel Observateur; François Hollande had ordered several
Rafale fighter-bombers to join the American assault. Their targets were
reported to be in western Syria.

By the last days of August the president had given the Joint Chiefs a
fixed deadline for the launch. 'H hour was to begin no later than Monday
morning [2 September], a massive assault to neutralise Assad,' the
former intelligence official said. So it was a surprise to many when
during a speech in the White House Rose Garden on 31 August Obama said
that the attack would be put on hold, and he would turn to Congress and
put it to a vote.

At this stage, Obama's premise – that only the Syrian army was capable
of deploying sarin – was unravelling. Within a few days of the 21 August
attack, the former intelligence official told me, Russian military
intelligence operatives had recovered samples of the chemical agent from
Ghouta. They analysed it and passed it on to British military
intelligence; this was the material sent to Porton Down. (A spokesperson
for Porton Down said: 'Many of the samples analysed in the UK tested
positive for the nerve agent sarin.' MI6 said that it doesn't comment on
intelligence matters.)

The former intelligence official said the Russian who delivered the
sample to the UK was 'a good source – someone with access, knowledge and
a record of being trustworthy'. After the first reported uses of
chemical weapons in Syria last year, American and allied intelligence
agencies 'made an effort to find the answer as to what if anything, was
used – and its source', the former intelligence official said. 'We use
data exchanged as part of the Chemical Weapons Convention. The DIA's
baseline consisted of knowing the composition of each batch of
Soviet-manufactured chemical weapons. But we didn't know which batches
the Assad government currently had in its arsenal. Within days of the
Damascus incident we asked a source in the Syrian government to give us
a list of the batches the government currently had. This is why we could
confirm the difference so quickly.'

The process hadn't worked as smoothly in the spring, the former
intelligence official said, because the studies done by Western
intelligence 'were inconclusive as to the type of gas it was. The word
"sarin" didn't come up. There was a great deal of discussion about this,
but since no one could conclude what gas it was, you could not say that
Assad had crossed the president's red line.' By 21 August, the former
intelligence official went on, 'the Syrian opposition clearly had
learned from this and announced that "sarin" from the Syrian army had
been used, before any analysis could be made, and the press and White
House jumped at it. Since it now was sarin, "It had to be Assad."'

The UK defence staff who relayed the Porton Down findings to the joint
chiefs were sending the Americans a message, the former intelligence
official said: 'We're being set up here.' (This account made sense of a
terse message a senior official in the CIA sent in late August: 'It was
not the result of the current regime. UK & US know this.') By then the
attack was a few days away and American, British and French planes,
ships and submarines were at the ready. [...]

Obama's move for congressional approval quickly became a dead end.
'Congress was not going to let this go by,' the former intelligence
official said. 'Congress made it known that, unlike the authorisation
for the Iraq war, there would be substantive hearings.' At this point,
there was a sense of desperation in the White House, the former
intelligence official said. 'And so out comes Plan B. Call off the
bombing strike and Assad would agree to unilaterally sign the chemical
warfare treaty and agree to the destruction of all of chemical weapons
under UN supervision.' [...] *

The full extent of US co-operation with Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar
in assisting the rebel opposition in Syria has yet to come to light. The
Obama administration has never publicly admitted to its role in creating
what the CIA calls a 'rat line', a back channel highway into Syria. The
rat line, authorised in early 2012, was used to funnel weapons and
ammunition from Libya via southern Turkey and across the Syrian border
to the opposition. Many of those in Syria who ultimately received the
weapons were jihadists, some of them affiliated with al-Qaida. (The DNI
spokesperson said: 'The idea that the United States was providing
weapons from Libya to anyone is false.')

In January, the Senate Intelligence Committee released a report on the
assault by a local militia in September 2012 on the American consulate
and a nearby undercover CIA facility in Benghazi, which resulted in the
death of the US ambassador, Christopher Stevens, and three others. [...]

Washington abruptly ended the CIA's role in the transfer of arms from
Libya after the attack on the consulate, but the rat line kept going.
'The United States was no longer in control of what the Turks were
relaying to the jihadists,' the former intelligence official said.
Within weeks, as many as forty portable surface-to-air missile
launchers, commonly known as manpads, were in the hands of Syrian
rebels. On 28 November 2012, Joby Warrick of the Washington Post
reported that the previous day rebels near Aleppo had used what was
almost certainly a manpad to shoot down a Syrian transport helicopter.
'The Obama administration,' Warrick wrote, 'has steadfastly opposed
arming Syrian opposition forces with such missiles, warning that the
weapons could fall into the hands of terrorists and be used to shoot
down commercial aircraft.' Two Middle Eastern intelligence officials
fingered Qatar as the source, and a former US intelligence analyst
speculated that the manpads could have been obtained from Syrian
military outposts overrun by the rebels. There was no indication that
the rebels' possession of manpads was likely the unintended consequence
of a covert US programme that was no longer under US control. [...]

4 April

[*] Seymour M. Hersh first wrote about the sarin attack in the LRB of 19
December 2013.

(19) Sarin nerve gas was used by Syrian rebels, not Assad - U.N. official (Washington Times, May 6, 2013)

Syrian rebels used Sarin nerve gas, not Assad’s regime: U.N. official

By Shaun Waterman - The Washington Times - Monday, May 6, 2013

Testimony from victims strongly suggests it was the rebels, not the
Syrian government, that used Sarin nerve gas during a recent incident in
the revolution-wracked nation, a senior U.N. diplomat said Monday.

Carla del Ponte, a member of the U.N. Independent International
Commission of Inquiry on Syria, told Swiss TV there were “strong,
concrete suspicions but not yet incontrovertible proof,” that rebels
seeking to oust Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad had used the nerve agent.

But she said her panel had not yet seen any evidence of Syrian
government forces using chemical weapons, according to the BBC, but she
added that more investigation was needed.

(20) UN commissioner says evidence indicates Syria rebels 'used sarin'
(BBC, May 6, 2013)

UN's Del Ponte says evidence Syria rebels 'used sarin'

BBC, 6 May 2013

Testimony from victims of the conflict in Syria suggests rebels have
used the nerve agent, sarin, a leading member of a UN commission of
inquiry has said.

Carla Del Ponte told Swiss TV that there were "strong, concrete
suspicions but not yet incontrovertible proof".

(21) Obama authorizes CIA to arm Syrian rebels, citing Assad use of Chemical weapons (WSJ, June 14, 2013)

US to arm Syrian rebels

The Wall Street Journal, June 14, 2013

WASHINGTON—President Barack Obama authorized his administration to
provide arms to rebels fighting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad,
officials said Thursday, a major policy shift after the White House said
it had confirmed that Damascus used chemical weapons in the country's
civil war.

The classified order directing the Central Intelligence Agency to
coordinate arming the rebels in concert with its allies reverses a
long-standing policy that limited the U.S. to providing nonlethal support.

The White House declined to comment on the authorization, saying only
that Mr. Obama had decided to ramp up "military support" to moderate
rebels both in "scope and scale."

U.S. officials also told The Wall Street Journal on Thursday that the
U.S. military proposal for arming the rebels also calls for a limited
no-fly zone inside Syria that would be enforced by U.S. and allied
planes on Jordanian territory to protect Syrian refugees and rebels who
would train there.

Such a move, if the White House goes ahead, would represent a
significantly bigger U.S. engagement in Syria's civil war. [...]

(22) Daily Mail publishes leaked emails from defense contractor on False Flag chemical weapons attack in Syria (Jan 2013)

U.S. 'backed plan to launch chemical weapon attack on Syria and blame it
on Assad's regime'

Leaked emails from defense contractor refers to chemical weapons saying
'the idea is approved by Washington'

Obama issued warning to Syrian president Bashar al-Assad last month that
use of chemical warfare was 'totally unacceptable'


Daily Mail

PUBLISHED: 14:16 EST, 29 January 2013 | UPDATED: 14:16 EST, 29 January 2013

Leaked emails have allegedly proved that the White House gave the green
light to a chemical weapons attack in Syria that could be blamed on
Assad's regime and in turn, spur international military action in the
devastated country.

A report released on Monday contains an email exchange between two
senior officials at British-based contractor Britam Defence where a
scheme 'approved by Washington' is outlined explaining that Qatar would
fund rebel forces in Syria to use chemical weapons.

Barack Obama made it clear to Syrian president Bashar al-Assad last
month that the U.S. would not tolerate Syria using chemical weapons
against its own people.

According to, the December 25 email was sent from Britam's
Business Development Director David Goulding to company founder Philip

It reads: 'Phil... We've got a new offer. It's about Syria again.
Qataris propose an attractive deal and swear that the idea is approved
by Washington.

'We'll have to deliver a CW to Homs, a Soviet origin g-shell from Libya
similar to those that Assad should have.

'They want us to deploy our Ukrainian personnel that should speak
Russian and make a video record.

'Frankly, I don't think it's a good idea but the sums proposed are
enormous. Your opinion?

'Kind regards, David.'

Britam Defence had not yet returned a request for comment to MailOnline.

The emails were released by a Malaysian hacker who also obtained senior
executives resumés and copies of passports via an unprotected company
server, according to Cyber War News.

Dave Goulding's Linkedin profile lists him as Business Development
Director at Britam Defence Ltd in Security and Investigations. A
business networking profile for Phil Doughty lists him as Chief
Operationg Officer for Britam, United Arab Emirates, Security and

The U.S. State Department had not returned a request for comment on the
alleged emails to MailOnline today at time of publication. [...] ==

Here is a copy of the leaked document - SAVE it and PRINT it:

In case the above link does not work, I have uploaded a copy to

(23) Hacked emails reveal ‘Washington-approved' plan to stage chemical weapons attack in Syria

Hacked emails reveal ‘Washington-approved' plan to stage chemical
weapons attack in Syria

January 29, 2013

Alleged hacked emails from defense contractor Britam reveal a plan
"approved by Washington" and funded by Qatar to stage a chemical weapons
attack in Syria and blame it on the Assad regime, fulfilling what the
Obama administration has made clear is a "red line" that would mandate
US military intervention.

The leaked emails, obtained by a hacker in Malaysia, feature an exchange
(click here for screenshot) between Britam Defence's Business
Development Director David Goulding and the company's founder Philip


     We've got a new offer. It's about Syria again. Qataris propose an
attractive deal and swear that the idea is approved by Washington.

     We'll have to deliver a CW to Homs, a Soviet origin g-shell from
Libya similar to those that Assad should have. They want us to deploy
our Ukrainian personnel that should speak Russian and make a video record.

     Frankly, I don't think it's a good idea but the sums proposed are
enormous. Your opinion?

     Kind regards     David

The fact that the plan involves delivering a CW (chemical weapon) that
is "similar to those Assad should have," clearly suggests that the idea
is to stage a false flag chemical weapons attack that could be blamed on
Assad by Gulf states like Qatar and NATO powers.

If the claim that such as plot was "approved by Washington" can be
verified, then the Obama administration is complicit in a war crime.

According to Cyber War News, which details the process of how the emails
were hacked and includes screenshots of the leaked documents, the hack
also uncovered, "extremely personal information," including copies of
passports of Britam employees, some of whom appeared to be mercenaries.

A full list of all the hacked documents can be found here. One software
systems administrator who analyzed the ‘header' details from the email
in question concluded, "I have to admit that the email does indeed look
genuine….all these facts check out. So with Mythbusters objectivity I
have to call this one plausible."

Online business profiles confirm that both David Goulding and Philip
Doughty work for Britam Defence.

Last year, reports began to circulate that that US-backed rebel fighters
in Syria had been given gas masks and were willing to stage a chemical
weapons attack which would then be blamed on the Assad regime to grease
the skids for NATO military intervention.

Soon after in August, President Barack Obama warned that the use or even
transportation of chemical weapons by the Assad regime would represent a
"red line" that would precipitate military intervention. French
President Francois Hollande followed suit, stating that the use of such
weapons "Would be a legitimate reason for direct intervention."

At around the same time, a source told Syrian news channel Addounia that
a Saudi company had fitted 1400 ambulance vehicles with anti-gas &
anti-chemical filtering systems at a cost of $97,000 dollars each, in
preparation for a chemical weapons attack carried out by FSA rebels
using mortar rounds. A further 400 vehicles were prepared as troop carriers.

The attack would be blamed on the Syrian Army and exploited as an excuse
for a military assault. A March 2012 Brookings Institution report
entitled Saving Syria: Assessing Options For Regime Change outlined this
very scenario – where a manufactured humanitarian crisis would be cited
as justification for an attack.

Yesterday, Israel's vice premier Silvan Shalom told reporters that if
Syrian rebels obtained chemical weapons from stockpiles belonging to the
Assad regime, such a development would force Israel to resort to
"preventive operations," in other words – a military strike on Syria.

In December, a shocking video emerged of Syrian rebels testing what
appeared to be a form of nerve gas on rabbits, bolstering claims that
the rebels had already obtained chemical weapons.

As Tony Cartalucci also highlights, "Mention of acquiring chemical
weapons from Libya is particularly troubling. Libya's arsenal had fallen
into the hands of sectarian extremists with NATO assistance in 2011 in
the culmination of efforts to overthrow the North African nation . Since
then, Libya's militants led by commanders of Al Qaeda's Libyan Islamic
Fighting Group (LIFG) have armed sectarian extremists across the Arab
World, from as far West as Mali, to as far East as Syria."

Last month, 29 different US-backed Syrian opposition groups pledged
their allegiance to Al Nusra, an Al-Qaeda-affiliated group which, as the
New York Times reported, "killed numerous American troops in Iraq.

Numerous reports confirm that Al Nusra is the leading front line
fighting force in Syria and is commanding other rebel groups. Given
their prominent role, allied with the fact that the terror group has
been responsible for numerous bloody attacks in Syria, the notion that
the Obama administration would approve a plot that could see chemical
weapons fall into the hands of Al-Qaeda terrorists could represent a
foreign policy scandal even bigger than Benghazi-Gate.

In a related story, the Syrian Electronic Army, a separate hacktivist
group, continues to release hacked files and emails from numerous
sensitive foreign ministry and military websites belonging to Saudi
Arabia, Qatar and Turkey, including emails sent between these countries.

(24) A Look into the Britam Defence Data Leak Files -

A Look into the Britam Defence Data Leak Files

Published January 26th, 2013

By Lee J

A few days ago we did a report that a British based defence company,
Britam Defence had been leaked and confidential files had been published
online. [...]

After spending some time going over this stuff i have found the only
folder really needed was arch33 which contains all leaked data and gives
better insight in to the operations and company's Britam is working with.

The emails in this leak and files and information mainly trace back to
two Britam defence administration, one of which is the founder and
dynamic director, Philip doughty and his Business Development Director
David Goulding.

Extremely personal information such as a self complied C.V, copy's of
passports and more have been leaked from David and Philip as well as
emails and other plans.

 From a lot of the documents its very clear that britam is working
closely and even offering types of training programs to the National
Saudi Gaurd and some of its internal departments and specialist groups.

(25) Britam Defence is British private military company, operates mainly in the Middle East

Britam defence hacked, confidential documents leaked, site offline

Published January 24th, 2013 By Lee J

A British defence company has been breached and as a result a heap of
documents have been published online and now the site has gone offline.

The attack is on britam defence ( and has
been claimed by a hacker using the handle JAsIrX who uploaded the leaked
information to various file sharing websites and released it via a
single pastebin post with the a message about the release (see bottom).

The documents come in 6 parts and total over 423MB compress zip files
and inside the compress files appears to be a common layout of three
main folders named !!Syria, Iran and Iraq.

Inside these appear to be documents like passports, incident reports
about drunk employees which are labelled private and confidential as well.

A quick look into the files shows shocking plans for chemical warfare
attacks where they have planned to lure victims to kill zones. The file
can be found in the Iran folder under OPLAN (Ruhayyat) 1433H-1.doc.

     Move from their garrisons to occupy AA at Grid (1556) (IAW Movement
     On order defend in the designated sector from Grid (378477) to Grid
     Facilitate the passage of the Screening Force through PP (1, 2).
     Fix Enemy forces and lure them to the Killing Zones.
     On order conduct Counter Attack.
     Support Reserves when they conduct deep operations.

Full Gallery of documents in leak below: [...]

At time of publishing the website appears to be offline with the plesk
help page showing giving links to php and other test pages which leak
information about the server which could lead to further attacks.


The leaked data also contains usernames and administration login
credentials which appear to be stored in clear text which is a real big
worry for a defence company.

Also as noted below the British defence company was using a Singapore
based host for its server, its any wonder why such companys do this when
its national security they handle.

Message from the release:


     I’m JAsIrX and I will share with you some documents downloaded
after hacking Britam Defence server.
     Its website is located on the Malaysian server. I found bugs in the
website with same ip and uploaded web-shell through this site.
     Then I hacked plesk parallels control panel and gained access to
Britam Defence mail accounts and website directory.

     Leaked documents:
     – Contracts copies with signatures
     – Private email correspondence
     – Personnel data, etc.

     Britam Defence is British private military company, operates mainly
in the Middle East. It killed Arabs in Iraq and plans to invade in Iran
and Syria.
     Look through leaked documents carefully. CW means chemical weapon,
g-shell is short for a gas shell I guess.

     Help to distribute this info and let other people know about the
     Thank all


If i get more time i will release a report into the contents of this leak.

Update: Full report here

Peter Myers