This article was originally published in Greek on April 6, a few hours before the US strikes against Syria.
The liberation of Aleppo from the clutches of the reactionary opposition and the subsequent stream of victories of the Syrian Arab Army and its allies forced the US government to put its tail between its legs and temporarily accept the reality on the ground: the defeat of its proxy armies and, along with them, the defeat of an important part of its strategy on Syria and the Middle East. A few days ago, the US Secretary of State stated that Assad’s fate was to “be decided by the Syrian people”, which was a major concession to the US objective of regime change in Damascus.
And then came the news about Tuesday’s chemical attack in Idlib, which allegedly caused the death of 72 people including 27 children. Following the well-known pattern, the news were spread immediately and in perfect unison by all the Western media – which of course did not allow themselves even the slightest second thought about who was to blame (the Syrian government) – before finding their way to the statements of the officials of Western imperialism.
Recalling just a few from the list of endless lies of the western media about Syria (for instance, starvation in Madaya, holocaust in Aleppo) should be enough for one to keep a particularly cautious attitude – to begin with – toward the latest news.
Since the latest story has to do with a chemical attack, it would be useful to recall the Eastern Ghouta incident that took place in August 2013: another chemical attack, for which the West accused the Syrian government without any evidence, and which almost became the excuse for a direct attack against the country. MIT researchers would later prove that it was technically impossible for the Syrian army to have conducted such a strike, while Seymour Hersh of the LRB would interview several US intelligence officials who denied that the Syrian government was responsible for the attack, denouncing ‘the deliberate manipulation of intelligence’. Note that the attack took place on the day that UN inspectors were arriving in Syria. It should also be noted that in January 2013 the Daily Mail had published an article (which would soon be deleted) that talked about a “US-backed plan to launch chemical weapon attack on Syria and blame it on Assad’s regime”. For more information see Chapter 9 of the Tim Anderson’s book “The Dirty War on Syria: Washington, Regime Change and Resistance”.
But let us go back to the latest story about the alleged chemical attack. A closer look at the story will reveal that it comes, once again, from opposition sources (that is from Wahhabi cannibals and imperialist-sponsored dissidents with zero credibility). One will see that the Syrian government, which categorically rejects that it carried out a chemical attack, had absolutely no interest to carry out such a strike – unlike the opposition, which has no future without its imperialist bosses rushing to its rescue (note: we are talking about the same opposition that has repeatedly used chemical weapons in the past, something that has been even been admitted by UN officials). One will also observe that the incident took place the very day when the Syrian issue would be discussed in Brussels. What a coincidence! To make things better, just a few hours after the incident, the Guardian would publish an article by the leader of the White Helmets (pseudo-civil defense which is actually an imperialist-sponsored propaganda mechanism), in which he called on EU leaders to not back down from the objective of regime change in Syria .
At this stage, there is no reason to believe that the incident is anything else but a provocation aimed at justifying the further escalation of imperialist intervention in Syria. And it seems to be working.
Trump ominously declares that his «attitude towards Syria and Assad has changed very much,» while also reversing his criticism towards the Obama administration, accusing it for failing to attack Syria in 2013. At the same time, there are leaks about Trump telling senators that he is considering military action in Syria and that he is going to meet with the Secretary of Defense to discuss military options.
In a recital of bottomless hypocrisy, the US ambassador to the UN warns that the United States may act unilaterally in Syria if the Security Council does not approve their provocative resolution (which could very well function as a basis for an intervention).
The NY Times and the Washington Post, speaking on behalf of high echelons of the US deep state, are once again agitating in favor of escalating the US intervention on ‘humanitarian’ grounds; and the Western media pack follows their example, repeating the exact same line.
Seriously battered thanks to the resistance of the Syrian people and their allies, the strategy of the Empire for the Middle East has become the subject of explosive confrontations within the ruling elite of Washington. It is not easy to predict what the exact outcome of this confrontation will be, but our task is not to make predictions; it is to prevent the possible escalation of the imperialist intervention, which will dramatically raise the stakes of violence in the region, threatening to become the spark that will turn the regional war in Syria to a world war between the biggest nuclear powers.
Any serious action in this direction requires first and foremost that the Left, or at least a significant part of it, finally understands what is going on in Syria and takes the correct position. The Left and its people should be on alert for any possible developments.