Syria's successes in ceasefire/amnesty agreements is a greater threat to the West's plans for regime change than military conquests, but which would the UN prefer?
This post first appeared on Russia Insider
Many people have noted how successes by the Syrian government in its war on foreign-backed terrorists are often followed by ‘propaganda sabotage’, ranging from claims like the latest one of a Syrian ‘prisoner crematorium’ to the actual staging of deal-breaking atrocities blamed on President Assad and his ‘loyal forces’. Governments who are most closely supporting the terrorist armies and their official looking political representatives in Geneva, notably those of Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey, have been at the front line of this propaganda war, but increasingly they are now echoed by all the Western ‘allies’, media, NGOs and the UN.
So it was that the staging of a ‘Sarin attack’ in Ghouta in August 2013, and the recent ‘copy-cat crime’ in Khan Shaikoun in April were both desperate attempts to break the Syrian Army’s recent successes against the ‘Revolutionary’ insurgency. Some Western commentators even noted this – admitting that it was odd that “Assad” would use chemical weapons just when he was winning – though of course they didn’t let this little insight get in the way of their prejudices, and found some other weird reason to explain why Assad had done it anyway.
Although these high-profile attacks have received much attention, as well as provoking mindless media hysteria and limitless mendacity from Western leaders, the actual substance of these events on the ground for Syrians has been minimal by comparison with the brutalities they have suffered so long at the hands of the West’s proxy forces. Although so many of those daily little atrocities mightn’t be expected to attract individual attention – a few schoolchildren torn to shreds by an exploding gas bottle, a young man kidnapped by jihadists brought home to his anxious parents in a plastic bag, - there have been a number of truly infernal crimes committed in cold blood by the fanatical and inhuman barbarians we call ‘rebels’.
Unlike the campaigns by Al Qaeda dominated insurgents using their trademark suicide “VBEIDs” and TOW anti-tank missiles against military checkpoints and forces, whose legitimacy is at least debateable under the conventions of war, these massacres of innocents driven by sectarian hatred are incontestable; they are true crimes against humanity.
Two such crimes stand out – the massacre of Alawite villagers near Lattakia in August 2013, and the very recent bombing of bus-loads of Shiite villagers near Aleppo during a ‘siege-swap deal’. While the Rashideen bus convoy attack, which targeted and killed over 100 children, did receive evening news coverage in the Western mainstream media, the joint operation by FSA and Al Qaeda forces on unarmed villagers in Lattakia which involved equally shocking brutality and execution as well as mass kidnapping and imprisonment, passed almost unnoticed. Ditto the apparent use of those kidnapped children as suitable victims in the “Ghouta Sarin Attack” videos.
Such crimes would be notorious – like ‘Guernica’ or ‘Sbrenica’ – had they not been committed by ‘our side’ in the Syrian war – and indeed the fact that they have not become notorious is yet more indication that these violent fanatics are our mercenaries, and committing such crimes on our behalf.
In the days following the extraordinarily callous and inhuman massacre of children at the Rashideen crossing West of Aleppo on April 15th, there were hopes that some in the West would wake up to the truth about the ‘rebels’ in Idlib province, and their vital networks of support amongst Western agencies, including governments, NGOs and the UN. As stories came out from family members who had been trapped on the waiting buses, revealing the way that the ‘militants’ had lured hungry children into the path of a suicide car bomb with sweets and treats, some Western media were forced to have a further report on the ‘tragedy’, while still failing to identify correctly those responsible.
Embarrassed to say too much that might be seen as sympathetic to the ‘pro-government’ victims, they then sought to justify or explain the sectarian atrocity as payback, or retribution for the ‘forced displacement’ of the ‘rebels’ being taken to Idlib under the terms of the swap deal. No reports focused on the horrific video taken immediately following the bombing without including video and interviews with fighters and their families from Madaya and Zabadani waiting on the buses ‘displacing’ them to Idlib or to Jarablus near the Turkish border north of Aleppo.
And we can see this as the latest attempt by Syria’s opponents to once again spoil Syria’s achievements, but of a different kind altogether; these are not military achievements but are in peace-making and reconciliation, yet evidently pose an equal threat to Western interests.
The Syrian government’s efforts to ‘de-escalate’ and “de-conflict” in areas under siege by ‘rebel’ forces have been going on almost as long as the war itself, and following a strict but pragmatic program to defuse sectarian tensions and enable lasting ceasefire agreements. While the Western powers have focused entirely on their own regime-change circus in Geneva, and achieved zero progress on the ‘political transition’ for Syria that only they desire, they have quite avoided noticing or acknowledging the huge successes in Syria’s reconciliation program.
It was revealed recently that some 85,000 Syrian opposition fighters have accepted the Government’s amnesty under this program, with many now fighting with the Syrian Arab Army against the insurgents. At the same time those armed groups have become increasingly dominated by foreign jihadists and mercenaries, and stripped of “legitimate Opposition” status.
There have been many reconciliation-ceasefire agreements negotiated, mostly in suburbs of cities occupied by ‘rebel’ forces. In almost every case, where Western agencies and media have had any involvement, it has been as spoilers and deal-breakers. In the case of the recent ‘siege-swap’ deal, efforts to negotiate an end to the rebel sieges have been spoilt and sabotaged for nearly two years. While the UN has overseen these ceasefire/surrender/evacuation agreements, it has effectively provided UN amnesty for the violent jihadists who refuse to accept the ceasefire, allowing them to be transported with their weapons and families to other areas still occupied by anti-government forces.
It is hard to imagine any Western country agreeing to such a dictate from the UN – that violent criminals responsible for massive crimes against both government security forces and ordinary civilians could be allowed to walk free, and remain within the country. Yet Syria has had to agree to this demand in order to achieve the greater object of securing ceasefires, and liberating civilians trapped under ‘rebel’ siege.
Any idea that the UN is a fair mediator has now been dispelled by its latest declaration – that evacuation of the terrorist groups and their families constitutes ‘forced displacement’ and infringes on their basic human rights. In a country where some 7 million people have suffered ‘forced displacement’ from their homes over the last six years, fleeing from the areas invaded by the West’s terrorist mercenaries into parts of cities protected by the Syrian army, such a claim is deeply offensive.
The sort of fear suffered by so many Syrians, quite beyond the manufactured fear of IS terrorists experienced in European cities, has been adequately illustrated by the victims of the Rashideen bus bombings. These ordinary civilians from the villages of Foua and Kefraya near Idlib have been under siege by Al Qaeda militants for two years simply because they happen not to be Sunni. And it is they who have now been subjected to forced displacement as part of the agreement to free the towns of Madaya and Zabadani, but in a way that almost defies description, echoing the worst incidences of religious persecution and torture from the past.
For the fundamentalist ‘Takfiris’ who now dominate the last ‘rebel’ stronghold in Syria around Idlib, these non-Sunni civilians are ‘dogs’ and ‘scum’ whose very existence is an offence, and forcing them from their homes was not sufficient punishment. So these militants devised something better for the people who don’t fit their vision of ‘post-Assad’ Syria…
After keeping the convoy of buses waiting for two days, with the terrified families deprived of food and water by their terrorist captors, some men appeared with sweets and crisps for the children, and allowed them to leave the buses. Later in the day the exploding ‘sweetie van’ appeared and the children ran out… but their parents were kept on the buses at gunpoint, and forced to watch while their dead and injured children were carried and dragged away by the murderers to meet with some unspeakable fate - in the UN-protected ‘rebel’ enclave.
This post first appeared on Russia Insider
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