Yesterday (August 26) marked the third anniversary of the alleged incendiary attack on the alleged school in Urm al-Kubra. The news of this event was broadcast on the BBC 10 O’Clock News on August 29, just as MPs were voting on whether the UK would begin airstrikes against the Syrian government. On that occasion the push for war ultimately failed for various reasons, not least of which was the unexpected rebellion of a large portion of the House of Commons. But given that the propaganda for (more) Western intervention is still ongoing, and indeed has ratcheted up recently to a point of potential direct war between the US and Russia, it’s never been more important to remind ourselves about the nature of war-propaganda and indeed of the reality sold to us through the corporate media.
We can all agree that such reporting is deliberately timed, a co-ordinated promo intended to win a surge of easily-directed emotional outrage. Omran’s alleged rescue was selected out of the numerous un-reported stories of child-suffering in Aleppo, and publicised without investigation, because it told the right story at the right time. But people are less willing to think it might go further than that, into outright fakery of atrocities. That a casus belli might not be merely manipulated, but entirely fabricated, from the ground up, as a completely imaginary, fictional event.
So, let’s remember at this important juncture that the alleged “chemical attack” so fortuitously reported by the Beeb both on the nightly news and in its flagship documentary series Panorama, under the title “Saving Syria’s Children,” has never received any substantive independent verification, and that many people such as respected commenter Craig Murray, consider it to have been an outright fake.
It’s not a popular or easy point of view to sell, and not many even in the alt media like to go there. But for the brave and persistent efforts of Robert Stuart probably no one would have ever learned about the questions and lacunae surrounding this one alleged terror attack. Even those of us who could see its exploitation as propaganda would never have considered questioning whether or not it really happened.
But Stuart has asked the questions, and continues to ask the questions. And the answers that ought to be easy to find if the event was real have not so far been in evidence. In fact the more one digs, the stranger and less well-defended the narrative seems to become.
We’ve already aired portions of Stuart’s research (see sidebar), and must once again urge everyone to visit his site and explore it at length. In particular see:
Stuart has recently been asked to appear Syrian TV to discuss his research, and he’s particularly keen to highlight the following and encourage other people to make their own enquiries:
… a key aspect that has yet to be pursued, namely the identification of one the actors/volunteers who participated in the events of 26 August 2013. I would like to remind journalists… that I can provide this woman’s name and approximate location in Amsterdam in order that she may be traced and interviewed. This person may well be able to shed light on the identities of the other participants in what appears to be a historic breach of trust between the BBC and its global audience.
As the push for catastrophic intervention in Syria and other acts of equal insanity are being supported with ever more media hysteria, based on ever more dubious, implausible narratives, we need to be prepared to question way beyond our comfort zones. If we allow avowedly or actual “distressing” images or appeals to sentimentality or outrage to deflect us from rational investigation then we are behaving in exactly the way expected of us by those for whom human suffering, real or feigned, is just another useful tool for manipulation.
Please watch the original BBC Panorama program Saving Syria’s Children. Decide for yourself what you think about its honesty and the reality of the images and story it presents. And if possible invite your friends, family, colleagues to do the same.