As Russia mediates the terms of settlement, the Western alliance of aggressors should not think they can just skulk away with their weapons, like their Da'esh proxies did from Raqqa.
They must admit guilt, and face appropriate punishment for this crime of the century.
This post first appeared on Russia Insider
Now the day of reckoning has arrived, marked by the meeting of Presidents Bashar al Assad and Vladimir Putin in Sochi. Their conference was also a meeting of militaries, whose cooperation and success on the battlefield against Western-backed terrorists has brought us to this point. So we need to be clear about what happened, and what did not happen.
Syria has been under siege for six and a half years – longer than the siege of France in WW2 – to which the siege of Syria bears some superficial similarities. Such analogies can be misleading – France was under “collaborative occupation” by Germany, while Syria’s situation more resembles that of France in World War One - the similarities are rather in the question of guilt.
In both World Wars, there was little debate or doubt over who was the aggressor; France was not invaded because of preceding provocations or attacks on Germany, or seizure of its territory. Western powers who came to France’s aid in both wars did so to defeat German forces and restore French sovereignty over its own territory.
Such is the case with Syria, and this crucial point is now emphasised by the successful defeat of the invading and occupying forces. Syria played no part in starting the war in March 2011, either by provocations against its neighbours or in abuse of its own population that might justify “humanitarian intervention” (though noting that such infringement of another state’s sovereignty may in any case not be authorised under international law).
Both militarily and politically, the conflict was not a “civil war” in the sense that it arose from internal disputes between different ethnicities, religions or even political and economic conflict. Supporters of the government and the Syrian Arab Army or opponents of the Opposition could be found amongst all of these different groups, though the converse was not the case. Defying their claims to represent “the Syrian People” and “democracy”, the armed opposition and its support base within Syria were almost exclusively Sunni and hostile to everyone else, an extremism defined by the slogan “Christians to Beirut and Alawites to the grave”.
Although in some sense the war developed into a civil war, as sectarian tension was stoked by the increasingly jihadist nature of the insurgency, this may be seen as the cornerstone of the “Syrian conspiracy”. As happened in Bosnia twenty-five years earlier, mixed ethnic communities who had peacefully coexisted for centuries were turned against one another by foreign actors in a fundamentally malicious plan to “divide and rule”.
It is frankly astonishing, and barely comprehensible, that today we can still see the very same actors – the US, Israel, Saudi Arabia and their supporters – continuing to pursue the same illegitimate agenda practically unchanged, even as the victors of the Resistance define the terms of a settlement in Sochi and Moscow.
Those terms, as the culmination of the series of meetings in Astana and their work on deconfliction zones and ceasefire agreements, have shut the US and its Gulf partners out of the settlement. After years of pointless “negotiations” in Geneva achieved nothing because of US duplicity, the Astana meetings have been a remarkable success, such that cooperation and reconciliation between nearly all Syrian groups on the ground is now moving ahead very rapidly.
Appropriately enough, the only remaining groups who continue to fight the Syrian Army and launch attacks on civilians around Damascus and Idlib are also the only ones supported by the malignant “Friends of Syria” and their “Syrian National Opposition” club, now holding their own “me too” gathering in Riyadh. This club of losers is a sorry sight, even as it is displayed to the world through the Western media, and given legitimacy by the presence of the UN’s Stephan de Mistura.
The pronouncements from “The 2nd Expanded Syrian Opposition Meeting” in Riyadh, made by its Saudi spokesperson and apparent mastermind Adel al Jubair, now have no relevance or authenticity, though they retain an air of menace, backed by six years of lies and unstinting support for takfiri mercenaries in Syria. The calls from these “anti-Syrians” for a “political transition” excluding Assad has become a parody, while the true leaders in the defence of Syria stand proudly in front of their people, in Damascus, Moscow, Tehran and Beirut.
It reminds one of a small town council meeting, where amongst the motions on car parking spaces and plastic waste collection there is a resolution to support a mission to Mars.
But this is not such a meeting, and the continuing support of the UN both for the members of the SNC – some of whom are directly linked to terrorist groups still killing people in Syria – and for the illegitimate and corrupt agenda of this fake “Syrian Opposition” group, is highly disturbing. Even Turkey, whose partnership with Saudi Arabia in supporting the “Army of Conquest” accompanied its long support for the SNC, has changed sides to join Russia and Iran in Sochi. That the UN could still put its weight behind the conspirators responsible for the war on Syria, when the true depths of their collusion and cooperation with terrorist groups including Islamic State has now been exposed, is a credit to the stranglehold the Western propaganda narrative has over its subject populations, including the UN.
This narrative can no longer be sustained, particularly following the most recent exposure of collaboration between the US and IS in the “liberation” of Raqqa by the BBC, that most influential voice of the UK establishment.
However, those in the centres of Western power who pretend they can just retreat from the virtual battlefront under the protection of the Geneva conventions afforded to surrendering forces, are deceiving us yet again. Unlike Germany’s forces in World War Two, who were forced to accept the terms of trial and punishment, followed by decades of penance and reparations, the aggressor nations neither accept nor even recognise their responsibility for the Syrian catastrophe.
But this grand deception – a well-planned and ruthlessly executed scheme to push the interests and agenda of the US and its local allies at any cost, simply cannot go unrecognised and unpunished. It is not enough for them simply to retreat, and keep their powder – and that of their terrorist proxies – dry till the next “opportunity” arises or is created.
Syria’s President is not a vengeful man, and the current straightened circumstances in Syria don’t allow such a luxury; his government’s recent demand that US coalition forces immediately leave Syrian territory may have to suffice so long as it is enforced. That coalition includes Australia, and while the Australian government refuses to confirm its role in assisting Islamic State in Eastern Syria as part of the US coalition operations, “enforcement” must mean its forces will be targeted without warning if they are on or over Syrian territory. The strong support Australia is already giving to Israel, Saudi Arabia and the UAE also amounts to proxy aggression against Syria in this context.
While it may be a hollow threat to “make the aggressor nations pay” for what they have done to Syria while a state of delusion and denial is entrenched across the Western cultural and political hemisphere, it cannot simply be forgotten or overlooked. Even though Syrians have already shown themselves capable of forgiving their own brethren for being swept up by the fake revolution and even for committing terrible atrocities against each other, they must not be expected to be so generous to those foreign criminals who knowingly and intentionally inflicted so much pain and destruction on them.
As “intermediaries” in this war, it is now up to us to relentlessly pursue our own governments on behalf of Syrians until our leaders’ guilt in planning or colluding in this terrible crime is proven and admitted and some sort of penance imposed. At the very least our efforts through alternative media platforms such as this one must prevent such a monstrous and murderous conspiracy from being hatched ever again.
If that seems almost impossible, then we must go further – confronting our leaders directly, publicly demanding that they reject the Saudi-backed “Syrian Opposition” as illegitimate, and support Russia’s forthcoming Syria conference and settlement plans unambiguously.
This post first appeared on Russia Insider
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