The “heart of the Syrian chemical weapons programme” destroyed?

There were no chemical weapons in Damascus. The French, UK and US (FUKUS) surely knew that. So, their missile attack in the weekend had nothing to chemical weapons.

We all know the first casualty of war is the truth. However, it seems that the time truth really gets a flogging is after a highly publicised military operation. All the levels of patriotism, nationalism and bravado are used. No faults can be admitted. And the “enemy” always suffers a horrible defeat.

Then, of course, dissident voices get suppressed or vilified. That is until everyone calms down and the truth starts to sink in.

It has happened before, (remember Iraq). It will happen again. And, although it may be too early to completely burst the bubble of self-declared victory, it happened again in the weekend with the missile attack on Syria by the French, UK and US (the FUKUS team).

The Barezeh Scientific Research Centre, Damascus, before the weekend attack

But the truth is already coming out. The whole attack was based on a lie. The constant reference to proof from classified evidence is complete nonsense. We can see this clearly in the case of the main target – the Barezeh Scientific Research Centre.

This centre was completely destroyed. Most of the missiles launched (76 out of about 105) targeted this centre. But why?

Pentagon Spokesperson U.S. Lieutenant General Kenneth McKenzie declared “We believe that by hitting Barezh, in particular, we’ve attacked the heart of the Syrian chemicals weapon program.”

A Syrian soldier films the damage at the site of the Barzah Scientific Research Center in Damascus on Saturday morning after it was annihilated by 76 missiles. Image source: Daily Mail: Pentagon celebrates airstrikes which ‘crippled’ Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal 

So there you have it. This is maybe the key “fact” that the FUKUS military action centred on. The claim that the  Barezeh Scientific Research Centre was the “heart of the Syrian chemicals weapon program.” That’s where most of the destruction occurred, where most of the missiles were targeted. And US spokespersons claim they have successfully destroyed the Syrian chemical weapons programme.

What does the OPCW say about this centre?

While the FUKUS team has not supplied a single verifiable fact to support their action the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has supplied plenty of evidence to show the attack was based on a lie. And that evidence was surely known by the intelligence communities in France, UK and USA.

That OPCW evidence is in official reports from their investigators who regularly monitor possible chemical weapons sites in Syria (and other countries). The OPCW regularly monitor the  Barezeh Scientific Research Centre. Here is an extract from one of the latest OPCW reports (23 March 2018) which refers specifically to the Barezeh Scientific Research Centre (see OPCW Document EC-88/DG.1 “PROGRESS IN THE ELIMINATION OF THE SYRIAN CHEMICAL WEAPONS PROGRAMME”).

France, the UK and the USA are, together with Syria, signatories to the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC). They have access to all these documents. In fact, they have members on the OPCW Executive Council who actively peruse these documents. The permanent representatives are Mr Philippe Lalliot for France, Mr Peter Wilson for the UK and Mr Kenneth D. Ward for the USA. FUKUS must have known that regular inspections did not show the presence of any chemical weapons or relevant chemicals at the Barezh Scientific Research Centre.

OK – they may well argue that these weapons had arrived since the last inspection (last November) or are hidden from the inspectors. If they honestly believed that then they should have used the “‘challenge inspection’ provisions” of the Convention:

“A unique feature of the CWC is its incorporation of the ‘challenge inspection’, whereby any State Party in doubt about another State Party’s compliance can request the Director-General to send an inspection team. Under the CWC’s ‘challenge inspection’ procedure, States Parties have committed themselves to the principle of ‘any time, anywhere’ inspections with no right of refusal.”

Comments from a worker at the centre

The morning after the attack, France 24 interviewed Said Said, an engineer who is head of the centre’s paint and plastics department (see At destroyed Syria lab, workers deny producing toxic weapons):

“The building had three storeys: a basement, ground floor, and second floor. It had labs and departments that were unfortunately completely destroyed, with all their equipment and furniture. Thank God, no one was here. As we work in civilian pharmaceutical and chemical research, we did not expect that we would be hit.”

According to Said Said only non-lethal research and development occurred at the centre. It had been producing antidotes to scorpion and snake venom while running tests on chemical products used in making food, medicine and children’s toys.

“If there were chemical weapons, we would not be able to stand here. I’ve been here since 5:30 am in full health — I’m not coughing.”

The OPCW had visited the site in Barezh in recent years and had declared it free of any toxic weapons.

“The OPCW used to stay in the two upper rooms, and use the labs, and we would cooperate with them completely. The OPCW has proven in two reports that this building and the centre as a whole are empty and do not produce any chemical weapons.”

Update

Here is a video of the interview referred to by France24:

To summarise

The FUKUS group clearly knew there were no chemical weapons at the Barezeh Scientific Research Centre.  They had access to all the OPCW information on that centre. They claim to have relied on classified intelligence to make a different assessment. But that is clearly a lie – not only because “classified’ is the oldest trick in the book to hide the fact there is no evidence. But because any such evidence should have triggered a request by them for a “challenge inspection” – a request which could not have been refused by Syria.

Of course, we are still in the in the propaganda phase of this operation. Patriotism and jingoism are still driving the narrative of officials and politicians. The mainstream media suffers from this too and most real informaiton is coming from alternative media.

But these warmongers have an answer for that. According to Pentagon spokeswoman Dana White:

“The Russian disinformation campaign has already begun. There has been a 2,000% increase in Russian trolls in the last 24 hours therefore we will keep you all abreast of the facts moving forward.”

I expect to be labelled one of “Putin’s useful idiots” (again) or – and this is a new one – one of “Assad’s useful idiots,” any day now for daring to look at the real facts behind this missile attack.

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22 responses to “The “heart of the Syrian chemical weapons programme” destroyed?

  1. Pingback: ¿Se DESTRUYÓ el CORAZÓN del programa de ARMAS QUÍMICAS? – El Transdimensional

  2. Ken
    Many thanks for the invaluable links
    Here’s another that I came across on the Daily Blog
    A radio interview with Robert Fisk, who has just visited the clinic in Douma, and spoken to a Dr there.
    No chemical attack

    http://podcasts.spiritradio.ie/robert-fisk-from-douma-syria/

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  3. Thanks, reenmac.

    here is another more expensive report from an American source on the ground in Douma. Thes reports are not getting into our mainstream media to any extent.

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  4. And Robert Frisk’s report for the Independent:

    https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/syria-chemical-attack-gas-douma-robert-fisk-ghouta-damascus-a8307726.html

    Perhaps the truth is slowly getting through.

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  5. Snap!!

    How are the FUKUS going to spin this one?
    And notice any news on the Skripals has gone dead
    Unfortunately we have to now stand by for the next “outrage “to sweep all this embarrassing stuff off the news cycle

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  6. Thanks so much Ken
    You are invaluable

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  7. Ken’s quote: “Of course, we are still in the in the propaganda phase of this operation. Patriotism and jingoism are still driving the narrative of officials and politicians. The mainstream media suffers from this too and most real informaiton is coming from alternative media.”

    Not at all. Last night on Hardball, Chris Matthews, of MSNBC, which I would consider Mainstream Media, asked the question that you have failed to ask. Why were there no casualties from the 150 U.S. missiles which supposedly hit their targets?

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  8. David, I can not see the point of your comment. But as for your question about casualties.

    There were about 103 missiles. No deaths, several injuries. Three locations were destroyed – empty and containing no chemical weapons so people in the area not harmed. (Although the lairs in London, Washington and Paris described then as chemical weapons factories and storage areas. My post above, and the lack of casualties, surely shows that to be completely untrue).

    I do not believe FUKUS wanted any casualties in Damascus – I believe they knew there were no stocks of chemical weapons at the Barezeh Scientific Research Centre. I find it impossible to believe their intelligence sources did not include anyone capable of reading OPCW reports on Syria.

    The Russian MOD have given details which differ from those provided by the US. According to them there were several airfields and bases also targeted but none of those missiles got trough. According to the Russian MOD, about 70% missiles were destroyed. That seems high to me considering that the Syrians do not have modern anti-missile systems (the Russians are now considering supplying them with the S-300 systems). But it could be true if (as is likely) the Russian military provided continual information on the missile paths and likely targets.

    If these airfields were targeted then I expect FUKUS was prepared for a small number of Syrian military casualties – not civilians.

    One aspect which makes me suspect the Russian MOD are telling the truth and the US military is telling lies is that the US claims seem completely unrealistic. They claim 70 missiles were aimed at the Barezeh Scientific Research Centre. 70 missiles for 3 buildings. Come on. They also claim that all missiles reached their targets. Yet video recorded in Damascus actually show missiles being hit by the Syrian anti-missile systems. I have heard that either 5 were shot down or 5 got through – can’t remember the specifics.

    But there were definitely casualties.

    The first one – I mention at the beginning of my article, is the truth. FUKUS and our mainstream media have told outrageous lies – particular about the Barezeh Scientific Research Centre. They have absolutely no morality and are showing an absolute disdain for the work of the OPCW in their lies.

    I think this specific example shows how unwise it is to rely on the mainstream media, which simply used the same terminology as that provided by the US, has ignored completely the reports of the OPCW and, even now, when social media and alternative media are providing the OPCW reports, our mainstream media continues to hide these facts from us.

    Did MSNBC actually report the truth about Barezeh Scientific Research Centre? If not, why not?

    But the lies continue. FUKUS and our mainstream media are really pissed off that the area of Douma where the alleged chemical attack occurred has been liberated. OPCW inspectors are now working there and they spent the last few days interviewing 22 medical staff from the hospital in one of the White Helmet’s videos.

    So the UK OPCW representative distorted the information in the president’s report to claim that Syria and Russia are preventing access. The US delegate publicly claims that the Syrian and Russians are destroying evidence. They are preparing us, and the media, to discredit the OPCW findings. Anyone following social media will have seen how the pro-FUKUS bots swung into action earlier this week to promote this fake news. The Guardian has now gone so far as to claim the evidence provided by the medical staff was taken under duress!! Of course, relying on reports by terrorist-linked activists for this claim.

    Bloody hell. In the chemical attack in Khan Shaykhun last year these people simply accepted the reports from the terrorists. They never questioned the fact that these terrorists would not allow the OPCW or UN JIM team to visit the site and collect samples. And they simply used social media reports from the terrorist organisations – and samples provided by the terrorist organisations.

    As I keep saying, We should not wear blinkers and should not impose on ourselves self-censorship. The media simply cannot be trusted.

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  9. A bit off topic here, but how is it that you can justify the Assad regime’s crimes against humanity, mass atrocities against its own citizens, which are supported by the Russian government, and which have been documented by an official photographer of the Syrian Military Police who goes by the name “Caesar?” Caesar claims he has photographed more than 11,000 bodies. Some are included here: https://www.gettyimages.com/photos/syria-torture?sort=mostpopular&mediatype=photography&phrase=syria%20torture

    And why haven’t you discussed these in your many lengthy essays about unjustified biases against the Syrian regime?

    Just asking.

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  10. David, what a pathetic lie.

    I have never justified any crime against humanity – in fact, I have for a long time been fighting such crimes.

    And there are plenty in Syria committed by the head choppers who are financed and armed by the NATO powers.

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  11. Odd. Fighting such crimes? I have never seen you write against the crimes committed by the Assad regime. Could you please provide an example where you have fought against the crimes committed by the Russian backed Syrian regime?

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  12. So, David, you are backing away from your lie I “justify the Assad regime’s crimes [unspecified] against humanity.”

    Now you are upset I do not “write against the crimes [unspecified] committed by the Assad regime.”

    I guess your retreat to unspecificity derives from the absolute disaster of the US/NAT/Terroirist/WQhite Hlemtys claim of a chemical weapons attack in Douma.

    On the face of it, this seems rather stupid for the head choppers to create such a false flag incident just before the territory is liberated and journalists can actually get in to check out their story. Not to mention that for the first time the OPCW can actually investigate on the ground instead of relying on White Helmets propaganda.

    And is not the FUKUS missile attack completely illegal. And their claims of chemical weapons targets a complete lie?

    O)n the other hand FUKUS/White Helmets/ Al Qaeda are relying on an intense media campaign to cover up their lies – even to the extent of attempting to describe anybody posting real information as “Russian bots!”

    |I am afraid, David, you are nothing more than one of the “FUKUS useful idiots.” 🙂

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  13. Ken’s comment: “So, David, you are backing away from your lie I “justify the Assad regime’s crimes [unspecified] against humanity.”

    Response: There was no lie from me. There was a question from me. I noticed, in order for you to make it work for you, you left off part of my quote. Here is the question, again, in its entirety:

    “A bit off topic here, but how is it that you can justify the Assad regime’s crimes against humanity, mass atrocities against its own citizens, which are supported by the Russian government, and which have been documented by an official photographer of the Syrian Military Police who goes by the name “Caesar?” ”

    Now, I realize that grammar isn’t your specialty, but a Question isn’t an accusation (a bit defensive, aren’t we), a question requires a response. Here are some responses you could have offered:

    1.) I don’t justify Assad’s crimes. They are unjustifiable.

    2.) I don’t believe he has committed any crimes. This is more fake news.

    3.) I justify the Syrian regime’s crimes because ‘Whatabout the head-choppers. They’re doing a lot worse.’

    I guess you did respond. You have employed the classic technique of “Whataboutism” to justify crimes against humanity. Am I correct in my interpretation of your response? (That’s a question, not an accusation.)

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  14. In case you don’t know who Caesar is, or why this person has anything to do with a discussion about Syria, this link to an article about the photo exhibition in Dublin may shed some light on it: https://www.goalglobal.org/stories/post/what-are-the-caesar-photographs

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  15. This is an interesting comment from you: “On the face of it, this seems rather stupid for the head choppers to create such a false flag incident just before the territory is liberated . . .”

    Liberated. That is an interesting word. I’ve seen you use it before in describing the Assad regime’s military efforts. Assad is “liberating” the area, his people.

    “Liberating” to this? https://humanpains.com/tag/eyes-gouged-out/

    Perhaps my first interpretation of your response was not correct. Perhaps you are a devotee of the unique philosophy that “Life is the disease of the Universe.” And Assad is just cleaning things up.

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  16. David – you did lie. It makes no difference that you put a ? at the end of the sentence.

    You wrote “how is it that you can justify the Assad regime’s crimes against humanity”

    Yet, you know you cannot find a single instance where I have justified a crime against humanity – far from it.

    The fact that the perpetrators of these crimes against humanity are your head chopper fiends is not “whataboutism” at all.

    There are plenty of instances of those crimes – which you completely ignore. But you have never presented to me a single instance of a crime against humanity committed by the “Assad regime” which I have responded to with a justification. None at all.

    That makes you a liar.

    And, of course, you remain completely silent about the crimes committed by the FUKUS regimes with their missile attack. And their complete lies in describing a research institute as a chemical weapons factory – something they knew themselves to be completely wrong.

    Your attempted reversion away from the crimes committed by your friends is a blatant case oif “whataboutism”.

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  17. The Syrian comedian Treka shows how your objection to the liberation of his fellow citizens from the terrorists is farcical.

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  18. Sure. Fine. So we can all get on with our lives and avoid further diversions from you, if it makes you happy I lied when I asked you how you can justify Crimes Against Humanity committed by the Assad regime.

    Feel better?

    Does that mean you DON’T justify the Crimes Against Humanity committed by the Assad regime? If that is what you mean, please say it. Otherwise I will be forced to “lie” again and conclude that you do indeed justify them in some way.

    This is hilarious: ” But you have never presented to me a single instance of a crime against humanity committed by the “Assad regime” which I have responded to with a justification. None at all.”

    Did you actually look at this? https://www.goalglobal.org/stories/post/what-are-the-caesar-photographs . . And this: https://humanpains.com/tag/eyes-gouged-out/

    PLEASE GIVE ME YOUR EXPLANATION FOR THE CONTENT OF THESE LINKS. Do you justify the atrocities presented here? That is a question. It is not an accusation. Don’t put words in my mouth again!

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  19. You know what, on second thought I didn’t lie. You HAVE justified these abominations by saying that Assad is “Liberating” these people. If you want to call this murder “liberation,” then you are justifying it.

    So again, for the Third Time now: “How is it that you can justify the Assad regime’s crimes against humanity, mass atrocities against its own citizens, which are supported by the Russian government, and which have been documented by an official photographer of the Syrian Military Police who goes by the name “Caesar?” ”

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  20. So, David, you are defining the liberation of people who have been kept imprisoned in these enclaves as “murder” and a crime against humanity? Really?

    Show me how you can support such a stupid statement for Aleppo or East Ghouta – these liberations are recent, there is plenty of information available and testimony from the people who have been liberated.

    Really, somewhat who is that obsessed with supporting these head choppers that they would make such claims are beyond help. You are just not being at all rational.

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  21. “So, David, you are defining the liberation of people who have been kept imprisoned in these enclaves as “murder” and a crime against humanity? Really?”

    Response: No. 11,000 murdered. 250,000 imprisoned. Didn’t you look at the links I provided? It might help if you knew what you were talking about.

    And YOU are the one who is defining these atrocities as “liberation.” I’m not using that word to describe the actions of the Assad regime. YOU are.

    Your comment: “Show me how you can support such a stupid statement for Aleppo or East Ghouta – these liberations are recent, there is plenty of information available and testimony from the people who have been liberated.”

    Response: I see. So in your mind, crimes against humanity are ok as long as you can show the lives of other people have been improved. That must have been what the Germans were thinking in the 1930s & 40s.

    Your comment: “Really, somewhat who is that obsessed with supporting these head choppers that they would make such claims are beyond help. You are just not being at all rational.”

    Response: I’m not obsessed with these head choppers. I’m obsessed with getting you to admit that you are neither fair nor balanced in your approach to this situation. You, this blog, is the “Alternative Media” that you so highly tout as presenting Truth. You are the one who has condemned the Mainstream Media as being one sided . . as being Fake News. You’re no better. In fact you’re worse.

    I am obsessed with making you look at your own hypocrisy.

    Like

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