featured, NGO-Watch, Propaganda
Comments 157

Amnesty International Admits Syrian “Saydnaya” Report Fabricated Entirely in UK

by Tony Cartalucci from Land Destroyer

What you are looking at is a 3D model fabricated entirely in the United Kingdom, based solely on satellite pictures and hearsay. Passed off as evidence this technique of "forensic architecture" may soon become a new tool in the dissemination of war propaganda if it is not exposed.

What you are looking at is a 3D model fabricated entirely in the United Kingdom, based solely on satellite pictures and hearsay. Passed off as evidence this technique of “forensic architecture” may soon become a new tool in the dissemination of war propaganda if it is not exposed.

Amnesty International’s 48 page report titled, “Syria: Human Slaughterhouse: Mass Hangings and Extermination at Saydnaya Prison, Syria,” boasts bold claims, concluding:

…the Syrian authorities’ violations at Saydnaya amount to crimes against humanity. Amnesty International urgently calls for an independent and impartial investigation into crimes committed at Saydnaya.

However, even at a cursory glance, before even reading the full body of the report, under a section titled, “Methodology,” Amnesty International admits it has no physical evidence whatsoever to substantiate what are admittedly only the testimony of alleged inmates and former workers at the prison, as well as figures within Syria’s opposition.

Within the section titled, “Methodology,” the report admits:

Despite repeated requests by Amnesty International for access to Syria, and specifically for access to detention facilities operated by the Syrian authorities, Amnesty International has been barred by the Syrian authorities from carrying out research in the country and consequently has not had access to areas controlled by the Syrian government since the crisis began in 2011. Other independent human rights monitoring groups have faced similar obstacles.

In other words, Amnesty International had no access whatsoever to the prison, nor did any of the witnesses it allegedly interview provide relevant evidence taken from or near the prison.

The only photographs of the prison are taken from outer space via satellite imagery. The only other photos included in the report are of three men who allege they lost weight while imprisoned and a photo of one of eight alleged death certificates provided to family members of detainees who died at Saydnaya.

The alleged certificates admittedly reveal nothing regarding allegations of torture or execution.

Articles like, “Hearsay Extrapolated – Amnesty Claims Mass Executions In Syria, Provides Zero Proof,” provide a detailed examination of Amnesty’s “statistics,” while articles like, “Amnesty International “Human Slaughterhouse” Report Lacks Evidence, Credibility, Reeks Of State Department Propaganda,” cover the politically-motivated nature of both Amnesty International and the timing of the report’s promotion across the Western media.

However, there is another aspect of the report that remains unexplored – the fact that Amnesty International itself has openly admitted that the summation of the report was fabricated in the United Kingdom at Amnesty International’s office, using a process they call “forensic architecture,” in which the lack of actual, physical, photographic, and video evidence, is replaced by 3D animations and sound effects created by designers hired by Amnesty International.

Amnesty Hired Special Effects Experts to Fabricate “Evidence”

In a video produced by Amnesty International accompanying their report, titled, “Inside Saydnaya: Syria’s Torture Prison,” the narrator admits in its opening seconds that Amnesty International possesses no actual evidence regarding the prison.

The video admits:

There are almost no pictures of its exterior [except satellite images] and none from inside. And what happens within its walls is cloaked in secrecy, until now.

Viewers are initially led to believe evidence has emerged, exposing what took place within the prison’s walls, but the narrator continues by explaining:

We’ve devised a unique way of revealing what life is like inside a torture prison. And we’ve done it by talking to people who were there and have survived its horrors…

…and using their recollections and the testimony of others, we’ve build an interactive 3D model which can take you for the first time inside Saydnaya.

The narrator then explains:

In a unique collaboration, Amnesty International has teamed up with “Forensic Architecture” of Goldsmiths, University of London, to reconstruct both the sound and architecture of Saydnaya prison, and to do it using cutting-edge digital technology to create a model.

In other words, the summation of Amnesty International’s presentation was not accumulated from facts and evidence collected in Syria, but instead fabricated entirely in London using 3D models, animations, and audio software, based on the admittedly baseless accounts of alleged witnesses who claim to have been in or otherwise associated with the prison.


Eyal Weizman, director of “Forensic Architecture,” would admit that “memory” alone was the basis of both his collaboration with Amnesty International, and thus, the basis for Amnesty’s 48 page report:

Memory is the only resource within which we can start [to] reconstruct what has taken place. What does it feel like to be a prisoner in Saydnaya?

Weizman’s organization, “Forensic Architecture,” on its own website, describes its activities:

Forensic Architecture is a research agency based at Goldsmiths, University of London. It includes a team of architects, scholars, filmmakers, designers, lawyers and scientists to undertake research that gathers and presents spatial analysis in legal and political forums.

We provide evidence for international prosecution teams, political organisations, NGOs, and the United Nations in various processes worldwide. Additionally, the agency undertakes historical and theoretical examinations of the history and present status of forensic practices in articulating notions of public truth.

In other words, special effects experts and their tools – usually employed in the creation of fictional movies for the entertainment industry or for architectural firms to propose yet-to-exist projects – are now being employed to fabricate evidence in a political context when none in reality exists.

While the work of “Forensic Architecture” may be of interest to developing theories, it is by no means useful in providing actual evidence – evidence being understood as an actual available body of facts or information indicating whether a belief or proposition is true or valid – not a fabricated body of supposed facts or information.

Technology used for creating Hollywood dinosaurs and aliens, or an architectural proposal for a vacant lot, is now being used to fabricate evidence for politically motivated reports when no actual evidence exists.

Technology used for creating Hollywood dinosaurs and aliens, or an architectural proposal for a vacant lot, is now being used to fabricate evidence for politically motivated reports when no actual evidence exists.

The work of “Forensic Architecture” and the witness accounts gathered by Amnesty International – all of which were admittedly gathered outside of Syria – would form the basis of an initial inquiry, not a final report nor the basis of a conclusion that human rights violations not only took place, but that they constituted crimes against humanity and demanded immediate international recourse.

Amnesty International’s report lacked any actual evidence, with its presentation consisting instead of admittedly fabricated images, sounds, maps, and diagrams. Amnesty – lacking actual evidence – instead abused its reputation and the techniques of classical deception to target and manipulate audiences emotionally. What Amnesty International is engaged in is not “human rights advocacy,” but rather politically-motivated war propaganda simply hiding behind such advocacy.

Exposing this technique of openly and shamelessly fabricating the summation of an internationally released report – promoted unquestioningly by prominent Western papers and media platforms, including the BBC, CNN, the Independent, and others – prevents Amnesty and other organizations like it from continuing to use the trappings of science and engineering as cover to deliver monstrous lies to the public.


  1. Hawgfeeder says

    Instead of ceaslessly blogging, commenting, bitching, whinning, regurgitating what is already generally known about Amnesty International, why don’t some folks with a moral-imperative organize into effrctive, trained, search-and-destroy teams, covertly apprehend 30% of the top eschelon of this organization, spend three days with each one of them with needle nose pliers and a blow torch, and on the 4th day, feed each and everyone of them alive to hogs. This would send a message that there are some people in this world that aren’t compliant with this tyranny by acquiesing to it, and doing nothing like blogging and commenting about it?

  2. archie1954 says

    I suspected that the report was fabricated out of whole cloth. I wonder if the so called forensic experts mentioned in this article used experience gained at Guantanamo to extrapolate to the Syrian prison.

    • Mulga Mumblebrain says

      Eyal Weizman!!! Says it all, really-the destruction of Syria has been a Zionist objective for decades, as outlined by the Oded Yinon Plan in 1982. As Smotrich, the Deputy Speaker of the Knesset declared on Israeli TV last year-Damascus ‘belongs’ to the Jews!!!!!!!!!!

    • Don’t be daft, the US is hardly going to pay AI for an op ed showing the multitudinal sins of their own hypocrisy or corruption.

  3. UN/amnesty international ,human rites watch, medecine sans frontiere,and related ngo’s have been created and funded by anglo-zionist. Look at the UN flag Look at the Israel flag . Who donated the land in Manhatten to build the UN. All well founded and well documented facts. When did Palestine loose its land and viola when did the UN come to fruition.
    Some questions one would want to ask.

    • John says

      And you still believe that it was was all completely spontaneous and not at all organised?
      How touching you are; such unbridled naïveté.

      • Cartalucci implicitly supports every dictator in the Middle East and North Africa on the basis of “outside agitators”. If you are looking for a struggle against dictatorships in which the CIA does not play a role, you will look in vain. Imperialism always seeks to exploit insurgent movements that can become a new state power even Fidel Castro’s July 26th Movement:


        • “Imperialism always seeks to exploit insurgent movements that can become a new state power…”

          Curiously passive, this Imperialism of which you (naively) speak. One would think, logically speaking, that Imperialism would be more drawn to manufacturing the “insurgent movements”, the “news” reporting them and the “opinions” of the public in response…

          …which is, in fact, demonstrably, how it usually happens. Starting, with, hmmmm… Mossadegh, in 1953….? And that was before Facebook, mind you. Picture the poor, beleaguered CIA, reduced to air-dropping leaflets…! Things are so much easier for them now. Especially with the help of so many enthusiastic amateurs, in the comment thread trenches, to help normalize the propaganda…

          …right, Louis….?

        • thanks for the link Louis, it’s an excellent reminder of how the US was happy to fund the corrupt Batista regime who was of course, pro US. Things haven’t changed much since then have they, the US using every means possible to effect “regime change” when the regime is not forthcoming with it’s forelock tugging praise and subjugation.

    • Mulga Mumblebrain says

      Yes, he got that one right as well. Your record is rather less impressive.

  4. So funny that you can’t accept 13,000 people being executed when Assad has described every rebel as al-Qaeda terrorists.

    • John says

      So funny that you completely fail to provide one single shred of verifiable evidence for the figure you cite.
      Even more proof of your touching naïveté.

        • And to go with that possible range of error, only 95 deaths are documented deaths, that means confirmed dead by means of a death certificate, eh. So in fact, AI has managed to “document” between .73% and 1.9% of the between ALLEGED 5,000 to 13,000 victims. I mean, if we are going to go with the ‘facts.’

          • Jen says

            Add to that range of error the size of the buildings that make up Saydnaya Prison: they’re apparently not large enough that up to 13,000 prisoners could have been killed there over five years even if they were being killed at a steady rate. One also needs to consider why there appears to be no evidence of mass graves in the vicinity of the prison.

            • I fail to understand why you people would not applaud the killing of 13,000 jihadists. After all, the ‘al-Qaeda gonna get your momma’ is its most persistent topic.

              • Okay, If ‘they’ really are ‘al-Qaeda types,’ here, hear it, my applause.

                And no, the undercurrent of the ‘fiction’ is that it’s ‘ordinary’ folk who merely dared to voice out loud that they don’t ‘agree’ on certain ‘undefined’ issues with the “regime.”

                Well, that’s the tone I think it is written in. Don’t you?

                Here, let me quote but one sentence for you, the first two lines from Waldman’s novella:

                Saydnaya Military Prison is where the Syrian state quietly slaughters its own people. The victims are overwhelmingly ordinary civilians who are thought to oppose the government.

                And talking about inverting reality, eh, Louis: for phantoms that are ‘gonna get your momma,’ do you deny that al-Qaeda has both Syrian blood and rape on its hands?

                You don’t know ‘funny’ very well, Louis. But you do ‘repulsive’ better than most who actually work very hard at it, only with you it seems to be in unforced and natural. Just saying, eh. That is the impression you consistently make.

              • Jen says

                “I fail to understand why you people would not applaud the killing of 13,000 jihadists …”

                Well unlike someone who would like to see Bashar as Assad being hung from a tree by his ankles and being beaten as well, I like to think that most of us Off-Guardian commenters have some respect for other people’s right to exist.

            • Mulga Mumblebrain says

              jen, that’s where ‘Saddam’s human chipping-machine’ went-to Evil Assad, to shred the evidence.

          • And ironically, the smaller AI’s ‘fabricated’ estimate becomes, the more accurate and therefore believable, on the basis of the facts actually ascertained, becomes their ‘story.’

            Here, have a look:

            a) Say they were to estimate 100,000 exterminated in Saydnaya. With 95 confirmed dead — without being able to say exactly from what causes — AI would only have documented 95/100,000 or 0.095% of the deaths they would have alleged.


            b) Say they were to estimate the number of the exterminated in Saydnaya as being 95. With 95 confirmed dead — without, for all that, being able to say exactly how they actually died — AI would have documented 95/95 or 100% of the deaths they would have alleged.

            See how that works?

            • Mulga Mumblebrain says

              ‘Confirmed’ by whom? MOSSAD, the CIA or Saudi ‘intelligence’. No-I know. By the Guardian, probably that hero of ‘human rights’, Nick Cohen.

              • Well, if the death certificates are authentic, then the Syrian government would presumably have confirmed the deaths. But I agree with you: I’d have to to find independent corroboration, which I haven’t done. I’ll keep it in mind as something on which to follow up if and when I find the time. In the meantime, if you yourself find anything, it would be gracious of you to let me know.



          • Why would a regime intent on suppressing people under the cloak of secrecy provide death certificates for people they have illegally killed?

            • This is, according to Amnesty International, the answer to your question (i.e., it’s part of the “cover-up”):


              Three doctors who worked at Tishreen Hospital told Amnesty International that, starting in 2011, they received the bodies of detainees who died at Saydnaya on a regular basis. They reported receiving the bodies of detainees who died in the security force branches as well, and they noted that all deceased detainees were dealt with in the manner described below.

              When the doctors receive the bodies, they fill out a medical report stating the detainee’s cause of death, as well as his ID number and the branch where he was last detained, which is usually marked in pen on the deceased detainee’s arm and forehead. The medical report is then sent to the forensics department at Tishreen Hospital. There, the body is photographed by a member of the Military Police and a death certificate is drawn up based on the medical report.159

              According to former prison authorities at Saydnaya and doctors who worked at Tishreen Hospital, these medical reports and death certificates list only two causes of death: heart failure or respiratory failure.160 A former official at Saydnaya confirmed this practice, saying, “They issue a death certificate if the person dies from the conditions or torture. They do this to cover up the real cause of death. And they are clever, because the two causes they say on the certificates are technically true. In the end, your breathing stops or your heart stops. For everyone who dies in the world, this is true.”161


              • Admin says

                So, in effect the alleged absence of evidence for torture is being sold as evidence for torture?

                Is there anything to substantiate any of this narrative?

                • Why, yes, of course, and it is incontrovertible. You just underlined it yourself: the very absence of evidence itself is all of the evidence that is needed to indict. After all, it is incontrovertibly absent, and if that isn’t a “cover-up,” what is?

                  Now, of course, only 95 deaths have in this way been documented. But another five -to-thirteen thousand deaths have also without doubt been covered-up in precisely this way. Therefore, if the “cover-up procedure” is as Amnesty has here described, surely there must be somewhere in the government archives another five-to-thirteen thousand such documented “death-certificate-issued deaths,” as well as government taken “photos” of the deceased, because that’s also part of the procedure, not to mention Syrian families in receipt of those “certificates.” So it’s only a matter of time before the “truth” is fully exposed, like the “sixty million” everybody knows the Soviets exterminated but that their archives finally showed to be no more than less than half-a-million, people who had ‘died’ while in prison, as people mistreated or not sometimes do, and if the meticulously created Syrian government paper trail should turn out not to exist or to have existed at all — well that won’t matter, will it? The absence of “evidence” is all that “we” ever needed in the first place. Case closed.

                • Erm. Norman sorta just did Admin. In his use of AI’s silly contradictory statements, he showed how those statements actually demonstrate the gaping flaws in their assertions.
                  Norman is playing devil’s advocate with AI’s arguments and winning!

    • The charade has been debunked. Pax -Americana/anglo-zionist. GEN Wesley Clarke 2006 7 countries in 5 years. Wolfowitz doctrine. Total spectrum dominance . So keep on being a repentant marxist and I might add noted anglo-zionist. Ur whole narrative is falling apart. Libya under Qadfaffi had the best standard of living in Africa. Syrians under Assad have free education , subsidized housing free health care and no western/Rothschild banking institutions and no GMO’s. How many palestenians have been murdered by Israel the IDF how many paleseinians men woman and children r being incarcerated as we speak. How many acres of territory r being occupied in the west bank by Assad or Syrians or Iranians or Russians or Chinese. Pax-Americana is on it’s last salvo and once the 600 percent market correction happens. what will the western elites invent and fabricate this time 9/11 redux/Lousitania/Pearl-Harbour. Uss Liberty.
      Post Scriptum/Docius in Fundem. No matter how much hasbra u may spin on this web site u will always be called out. Note this is not a pax-americana website or pro Zionist website.

      • “no western/Rothschild banking institutions and no GMO’s.”

        You really have no idea of how screwed Syrian agriculture was. Whether or not GMO’s were used is a secondary question. Under the Baathists, there was a total disregard for water resources being used for export crops like cotton. Groundwater has been exhausted to the point where by 2020 the only water will be available in bottles at the grocery store for prices that only the rich can afford. I will have an article in Muftah.org that gets into all this. Too bad you people are so indifferent to Syria’s political economy and instead resort to ignorant conspiracy theories tinged with anti-Semitism such as the reference to Rothschild above.

        • Try to express your opinions on the content without impugning the characters and motives of those with whom you disagree. If your point is good the ad hom is a distraction. If your point is bad…well, you probably should re-think your position. 🙂

          • So why don’t you reprimand this guy for describing me as a “noted anglo-zionist”? I guess some people are more equal than others. The truth is that I put up with a tremendous amount of ad hominem abuse here but you only single me out for something I don’t actually indulge in. Maybe you are not aware of it but this Rothschild banker meme is circulated around the conspiracist wing of the left (speaking liberally) like a sexually transmitted disease. To refer to me as a Zionist is a sleazy way of referring to me as a Jew and I really resent it. All you need to do is go to my blog and do a search on Israel. If you find a single word in the hundreds of articles I have written in support of Israel, I’ll donate $100 to your favorite cause.

                • Jen says

                  I’m afraid Louis Proyect loves punishment and that as sure as the sun rises in the east, birds keep flying and fish continue to swim in the sea, he will be back for another birching from the likes of you, me and half of the regular Off-Guardian commenting crowd when next there is a post on Syria.

                  One of his esteemed forebears (of the former Lemberg in Galicia, now Lviv in western Ukraine) might have been the writer Leopold von Sacher-Masoch.

                  • Jen. thanks for the link – very informative and interesting, but there is one point I would like to make. According to Wiki, Sachor-Masoch, despite the fact that he was predisposed to sexual deviance, was “….well known as a man of letters, a UTOPIAN thinker who espoused SOCIALIST and HUMANIST ideals in his fiction and non-fiction….” and “Sacher-Masoch edited the Leipzig-based monthly literary magazine Auf der Höhe. Internationale Review (At the Pinnacle. International Review), which was published from October, 1881 to September, 1885. This was a progressive magazine aimed at tolerance and integration for Jews in Saxony, as well as for the EMANCIPATION OF WOMEN WITH ARTICLES ON WOMEN’S EDUCATION AND SUFFRAGE. In his later years, he worked against local antisemitism through an association for adult education called the Oberhessischer Verein für Volksbildung …”…” he published a number of volumes of Jewish Short Stories, Polish Short Stories, Galician Short Stories, German Court Stories and Russian Court Stories. His works were published in translation in Ukrainian, Polish, Russian and French….” (upper case – mine)
                    That’s a far cry from Proyect, I think you give him too much credit in comparing him with Masoch who was sympathetic to all peoples. IMHO I’d suffer Masoch easily, whereas Proyect……..?
                    I’m going to say my prayers every night and be a good girl, with the addendum “but please spare us Proyect and a lot of people will be grateful.”

              • And bada-bing, bada-boom, this is the cherry!

                Please, don’t go. I beg you. There will no one left to rightfully abuse.


                  • You do know we are being the equivalent of thoroughly naughty playground bullies. You shouldn’t mock the afflicted, can you not find it in your heart, to spare a thought for his ineptitude as demonstrated by John. NO?
                    Oh good, glad I’m not the only one.

                  • Thirded. hahaha, you are naughty (but nice) see comment in reply to Norman. We are bad, bad little boys and girls and when Louis grows up, so will I(then I really WON’T be so nice)

            • John says

              Louis’s thinking on the concept of anglo-zionism is completely flawed. There are many christian-zionists in the US who are not jews.
              Not all zionists are jews and – equally – not all jews are zionists.
              Jews are claimed to be an ethnic grouping of sorts, whereas zionism is an ideology, which has become heavily fractured into varying parts: orthodox, reformist, green, labour, etc. Choose your flavour!
              The two descriptors (jew/zionist) are – literally – incomparable.
              I don’t mind Louis revealing and reveling in his own ignorance but it does rather lower the tone for this site – unfairly so, I believe.

        • John says

          Louis writes as though he has thoroughly researched the topic he is pronouncing upon – which is always nice to see and thoroughly persuasive – possibly.
          Strange, then, that he did not cite the following text from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Syria%E2%80%93Turkey_relations: ‘Water disputes have been a major source of conflict, as Turkey has constructed several dams on the Euphrates and Tigris rivers as part of the Southeastern Anatolia Project (GAP) to develop the region.[2] The project GAP was aimed at reducing the harsh living conditions of the Southeastern provinces of Turkey by building 19 dams on the rivers of Euphrates and Tigris. This project, however, would seriously reduce Syrian water resources.
          In addition to this, Euphrates and Tigris are not the only rivers that tangle Turkish-Syrian relations; the water distribution of Orantes River – which pours into the Mediterranean from the province of disputed Hatay – also raises problems between the two states.’
          Louis also failed to reference the fact that Syria experienced the worst drought in 50 years in 2006.
          Water, right now, is a very big deal in the current equation that is Syria – and not just Syria.
          It is also a major problem for Iraq too, especially as Turkey keeps taking arguably more than its fair share of water for its own agricultural, industrial and residential purposes.

          • Well informed re the cause of drought , you sure it was 2006 I thought Syria’s drought was worst on 2008. It’s semantics on my part, since it could well have been the culmination of drought conditions drying up previously reliable wells. The influx into the larger cities of the countryside farming population did strain relations but “for the most part”, funding was found, to relieve the problem and people got along. Syria was long known for it’s tolerance to all, would that we, the largest economies of the world, could make that same claim.

        • Mulga Mumblebrain says

          Typical hasbara tactic-start spewing ‘antisemite’ to smear, vilify and intimidate. Destroying Syria and breaking it into pieces is a prime objective of Israel, as outlined in the infamous Oded Yinon Plan, and often since. Israel has attacked and subverted Syria constantly since 1948, aided and abetted by their puppets in the USA. They are the architects of this catastrophe, as in Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, Sudan etc.

    • How strange you should find questioning of an obviously false narrative with regard the murderous US/UK Saudi plan and choose to ignore the perfidy of the perpetual propagation of provable lies. Why would that be, one asks?

    • Sav says

      ‘So funny that you can’t accept 13,000 people being executed when Assad has described every rebel as al-Qaeda terrorists.’

      That doesn’t even make any sense.

      The Syrian government has even allowed passage for these ‘rebels’ to leave. Would the US ever consider doing this? I remember the road to Basra. Mass slaughter and bulldozers used to bury the evidence.

    • Mulga Mumblebrain says

      So funny that you can’t accept that the war in Syria is entirely caused by the USA in league with Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Israel, Turkey etc, that is was violent from the very start, that it enjoys little support among Syrians, and that the takfiri Wahhabist psychotic butchers are among the most evil death-squad butchers ever assembled by the USA to do its dirty work. What is it about the child-crucifiers that your type find so alluring. Is it the beards?

  5. Sav says

    Here you see this guy Michael Isikoff (of Yahoo News??…Walmart going to start their own news next?) puffing his chest over his interview with Assad ref this new claim.


    Straight out lying and manipulation. He has no evidence of who these victims in the pictures are or where the pictures are taken. The FBI report he cites says nothing more than that the pictures are of real people. He knows that full well but bullshitting his audience works.

  6. Merely to make up my own definition,

    Forensic Architecture: we put into moving pictures, or rather, 3-D(-ish) motion video graphics akin to what you find in video games what you relate to us in so many words or bring to us in actual videos and pictures — for a small fee.

    What it really is, is Interactive Media Design, but I guess you can call it whatever you like, and you can surely qualify it as “forensic” if you are into simulating actual alleged “crime scenes” that you replicate — as Mohandeer has rightly pointed out — on the basis of information provided to you.

    But I really like this quote that “leads” into the “Executive Summary” of Amnesty’s report:

    “Saydnaya is the end of life – the end of humanity.” — “Abu Muhammed”, former guard at Saydnaya (my emphasis)

    And immediately after that, the first sentence:

    “Saydnaya Military Prison is where the Syrian state quietly slaughters its own people.”
    (also my emphasis)

    My, that really sets the tone, doesn’t it? They are obviously not going to be appealing to my emotions but to my acumen in evaluating the merit of “evidence'” about to be presented, indicting the Syrian “regime” crimes against humanity.

    But I really should get back to reading the report. Maybe there really is something to it beyond merely a tone of the sinister and unverified allegations . . .

    • My understanding of the meaning of ‘forensic’ would be what articles like this do with projects like this one by Amnesty International, utilizing Eyal Weisman’s forensic architecture, and finding that project, which involves prioritizing speculation over actual evidence, wanting. And this is the approach taken by scientists who are proponents of biological evolution. They draw fantastic images of creatures who they insist existed and, because ‘leaders’ are predisposed to embracing biological evolution as fact and pass that bias on to the general public, we are left with the ‘fact’ of biological evolution taught in almost all classrooms and so entrenched, like the myth of a righteous JFK, that those who suggest an alternative reality are attacked, swiftly and without mercy.

      • I agree with the point you are making despite being an enthusiast of evolutionary theory grounded in the fossil record, which is the evidentiary basis of the theory, of a kind, as it happens, with all those “breeds” of things animal husbandry has been able to “produce” over the many centuries of its efforts.

        But if we can agree to disagree respectfully over the latter, we surely are 100% together on the other half of what you said.

        (And only because you brought it up, Arrby, and though I know I shouldn’t, for those as enamored (or not) as I am of Stephen J. Gould, an absolute treasure trove for you: The Unofficial Stephen J. Gould Archive Enjoy! And my apologies to Admin. (I’ll reprove myself for going ‘hors-piste’ so you won’t have to: “Don’t do this again, Pilon.” Scout’s honor, I won’t. I hope.))

      • Darwin was persecuted for even trying to speak of the unthinkable, so we really haven’t advanced as far as we would like to think, have we? By the way, science has yet to prove to me with any degree of certainty that it was not a hunter primarily, but an opportunistic vulture, which reminds me I’ve gone off topic, almost but not entirely.

        • Re-write – brain dyslexia”Darwin was persecuted for even trying to speak of the unthinkable, so we really haven’t advanced as far as we would like to think, have we? By the way, science has yet to prove to me with any degree of certainty that
          ….T REX … was not a hunter primarily, but an opportunistic vulture, which reminds me I’ve gone off topic, almost but not entirely.

          • But the mangled version of what you had intended to say made perfect sense to me, however, and this is how I read it:

            Science as currently institutionalized is more about status and profit-making opportunities (an opportunistic vulture) than it is about being selflessly dedicated to the pursuit of truth (primarily a hunter).

            And so it is and even was in Darwin’s own day.

            Your revised version also works, but in an entirely different direction.

            Words: add some, subtract one, and you end up in completely different places, sometimes surprising yourself with what you just inadvertently but brilliantly just said, other times completely misstating your point, occasionally getting it almost right until you re-read what you wrote a year later.

            As for T-Rex, it most certainly lived and is now gone the way of . . . errr . . . yup.

            But we digress, don’t we. This one is entirely on you and Arrby.

            • Me and Arrby? That’s it, blame it on us. Chicken. Your’e just scared in case admin give you a ticking off. So I’ll sign off now before I get it in the neck…..Chicken.
              Actually I can’t actually remember who it was I was responding to but Arrby is not usually difficult or particularly antagonistic and as far as I can tell, he’s on the right side, just not mine right now, obviously. Ah well, can’t please everyone all of the time. SO’N

                • Do you get dafter as the day draws to a close? Have been jumping between OffG posts with “how the left destroyed…went looking for you, can’t remember if I found you. There seems to be a consensus with one or two raising alternative views. Might prove edifying – I’ll find out tomorrow.

  7. I’m checking all these linked-to articles and bookmarking some newfound blogs (and old sites that I found annoying but are too useful to ignore) and then I come across Tony Cartalucci and Nile Bowies’ ebook “War On Syria” and an opening quote from John F. Kennedy. I really, really want to just move on after that. What the hell?!!!

  8. Another people’s organization bites the dust. Which isn’t to say that there is ‘no’ torture happening in Syria with Bashar Assad’s stamp of approval.

    • “Which isn’t to say that there is ‘no’ torture happening in Syria with the stamp of approval of the U.S. and its allies, too.” — just to be clear and not to split hairs.

      • The US was fully aware of both Gadaffi’s and Assad’s holding and torturing of MB and AQ extremists and it was part of USA/Libya agreement that these undesirables be “acquired” by Gadaffi before they could reach US shores. As long as neither country decided to trade with Russia, all was well and only after both countries, three if you count Iraq under Hussein, four if you count China as well, started negotiating with Russia on the pipelines to the silk Road did problems arise. Turkey’s Erdogan was in talks with Putin re said pipeline and was told in no uncertain terms by the US, that they would withdraw their financial support for his murderous regime. He opted for US support and for his funding etc. and just scraped through – the US is very good at this sort of thing, they did the same in Bulgaria, Serbia and Macedonia – with threats and promoting and funding dissident campaigns igniting so-called “civil wars” (now where have we heard that term before). Only after the US showed that they were willing to throw him under the bus did Erdogan turn away from the US and back to Russia. Any and all of these countries have bad raps as to their use of torture in prisons and their human rights violations are no secret either, when they are not opposing the US – silence on these violations, Saudi and Qatar and Israel being top of the pile, but the minute they cross the US – wham, the Monarchy/Government of that country is no longer under US/UN protection and a regime change is required on human rights issues or democratization grounds. Bibi fell foul of Obama, which is why the narcissistic Obama did not veto the UN vote on Israeli illegal settlements. If you take a step backwards and view it over many years, you realize that all that you observe is no more than a game, moving chess pieces and playing brag or poker – such fun eh?

        • Fun, indeed. And to suggest that they are ‘playing’ is no understatement. That’s one of the things that is so hard for me to wrap my head around. I can’t fathom it, but I do ‘know’ that in some sense ‘other human beings’ do not really exist in their calculus, in the way that they perceive or construct their reality. Otherwise, how could they permit themselves to be complicit in all of the mass murder and destitution?

          Or is it that we are all trapped inside some inhuman dynamic over and above us, these things that we call institutions and culture?

          I don’t buy it. To some degree, yes, we really are impelled in our actions by such ‘forces.’ But an ‘awareness’ of the implication of one’s actions in terms of the hurt it will inflict on others means that one can and does “decide” whether or not to engage in it. I believe in moral responsibility, in my ability and obligation to resist what I know to be wrong because another will suffer on account of it. So no, there is no absolution for their crimes, for what they “know” they do.

          You cannot command and follow the command to murder ordinary people without ‘knowing’ that you do so, and so although you may be able to play all kinds of little mind games with yourself to displace your moral responsibility away from your murderous actions, you cannot not “know” what you do and thereby that you could have done otherwise, either as commander or even as the lowly soldier “just following orders.”

          They play and know very well that they play and what they play. And they cannot not know what monsters they truly are. And in part, that’s the role of this thing called Amnesty International, isn’t it? It’s function, in part, is to try and cover up the truth even from themselves, perhaps and even especially from themselves, to legitimize their actions to themselves, to lighten their guilt burden, to absolve themselves, and the more people you have with you to confirm you in your “innocence,” in having had to make “difficult” choices, the easier it becomes to bear.

          It is right and proper, then, that we should call them out on their bullshit and deprive them of all cover, even and especially whatever little they manage to concoct, as absurdly inept as the AI report at hand, to hide themselves from themselves.

          Yes, I begin to see the usefulness that would be a concerted campaign to expose and completely discredit Amnesty International as the fraud that it is, not only in terms of raising public awareness, but to help the butchers better appreciate what they themselves really are. We’d be killing two birds with one stone. Or at least I would hope so . . .

          • With regards to our shared perception of things and the killing of two birds with one stone, I’d be just plum tickled to death to kill the whole bloody flock. They are Legion and should be cast out and over that cliff edge ASAP. There is a saying that sometimes you need to be cruel to be kind, it certainly works for them – except they have the context reversed, my idea would be to be cruel to those who would do harm to others to protect the others who have done no harm. I doubt the infestation of fleas that inhabit the “Legion” could ever wrap their heads around the concept of honest decency, so the only thing left to do is exterminate them like any other contagion.

            • “. . . I’d be just plum tickled to death to kill the whole bloody flock.”

              I was about to reprove you, but then it occurred to me that I would be, too, “tickled,” that is, which is strange considering my revulsion toward violence.

              On the other hand, there is to my mind a sharp distinction to made between the violence of an oppressor and that of an oppressed victim struggling against his or her oppression: there is no possible moral equivalence between these two categories of violence.

              However, though I’d be cruel, it would be in a kind way. I don’t think I could torture anyone, not even the most deserving of all the deserving.

              . . .ah, fantasy. How satisfying it can be . . .

              . . . until our next encounter, then?

              • “I don’t think I could torture anyone, not even the most deserving of all the deserving.”

                Which is why neither of us (nor most of the people commenting here today, nor our ilk in general) will ever rule the world. Of that we can be proud!

                Incidentally, if you ever want to see psychopathy in action… buy a cat. Not joking! Cats are perfect illustrations of profitable psychopathy… all that purring (when you please them) notwithstanding. If you’ve ever seen a cat “play” with a smaller, helpless creature….

                Somehow, some of us hominids evolved Empathy, separating us from quite a few (though not all) other Animals… and some of us didn’t.

                • Hey, don’t blame the cat for not being a sheep and staying true to it’s natural instincts – at least it’s a kind of honesty. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to distinguish between the sheep and the wolves in sheep’s clothing – think Cameron, Blair, Bush, Obama, Clinton, Carter, Nuland, Allbright…………oh dear, gonna run out of time and space with this list.

                  • Yep: Cat = Cat… no problem there, M! But a human with a cat’s utilitarian lack of empathy… that’s a problem. And I think that’s what we’re seeing, in so many of these “leaders”…

                    Now Dogs, on the other hand… if only there were more humans as smart and empathetic as your average Jack Russell Terrier…

                    • Agreed with one minute difference. She’s 26″ short at the shoulder, daft as a brush, has no functioning brain most of the time and she’s a ……Greyhound….Yay. (Well you didn’t think I was referring to me did you.)
                      When I think about the various posts that have responded, I realise that so many people do know what is going on and it makes me wonder how so many can manage to place their heads so far up……
                      that they are truly oblivious to the reality. It’s like living in an alternate universe, far removed from reality.

              • Understand your aversion to violence. Some bloke riding a bike booted my little dog into the bushes, some elderly folk tried to knock him off his bike with their walking sticks, but couldn’t catch him. I grabbed up my dog and plonked her in their care, ran after and caught him – the rest you don’t want to know. My leg was ripped on the rusty mudguard and he was – well we don’t need to go into that – and the old people cheered for me. No-one likes a bully but because I’m female, 5ft 6 inches and weighed just over a hundred pounds he thought I was an easy mark – the dog was 20 lb – I wasn’t proud that I met violence with violence but was bloody glad he got his comeuppance. He gave me a wide berth after that, perhaps it even gave him pause for thought in considering his next mindless act of brutish thuggery, if so, was I right or wrong?
                Violence should always be the last resort, but there are times when talking just doesn’t cut it, such is the mentality of those who live by violence and cowardly acts of unnecessary brutality.
                As for torture and the death penalty, both are a reflection of a mentality that condemns and inflicts on those they condemn the same as that which they abhor, they become what they hate. One chap advocated a humanitarian means of effecting the death penalty, demonstrated on pigs, who were oblivious to the fact that they were dying(happily munching on apples) but the notion of a painless death was rejected by a majority consensus and they stuck with the terror of the original. Torture is cruel and those who inflict it can be proud of say, sliding a dull knife across a boys throat, or, enjoy extracting information – which may or may not be truth or even useful – and justifying it by whatever means they can concoct. There isn’t too much to tell them apart with regard good guy and bad guy – they are to my mind, not people I would wish to associate with. It’s all about perspectives and perceptions and they are unique to every person.

                • Entirely agree with everything you write, Mohandeer. I am not a pacifist. When I suggest that I would be cruel, I’m suggesting that if circumstances dictated, I could easily kill.

                  And I’ve also dealt rather roughly with bullies in my time, and it was not a question of being right or wrong, but of them getting exactly what was coming to them. I am no thug, but I won’t be cowed or intimidated. I apologize if my reply put you ill at ease. That wasn’t at all my intention.

                  A link for you to a short piece I cobbled together, suggesting where I stand on the issue of violence as such: here.


                  • Your comment didn’t so much put me ill at ease, but it did make me think that I might not be the best person to judge others who have a violent nature or have done violence. I will not apologise for who or what I am, but equally, I come across people who would in previous days be judged “conscies” and for them I have sympathy and will not judge them. It’s not everyone who can use their fists (I boxed and did judo as a teen)and even fewer who could not only wield a knife but actually use it in earnest – which is why I carry a rounders bat with me when investigating strange noises in the night. I know I couldn’t knife or shoot someone. If I’m going to get down and dirty with a bad guy, it will be on terms (and outcomes) I can live (or die) with.

                • “Violence should always be the last resort, but there are times when talking just doesn’t cut it, such is the mentality of those who live by violence and cowardly acts of unnecessary brutality.”

                  Definitely. I’m only creeped out by people who can act violently on others dispassionately… in cold blood, as it were. Lots of people who pretend to long for “righteous revenge” are just sadists who need any excuse to cause physical pain. I wouldn’t wish torture on my worst enemy; the idea of people screaming in pain makes me sick.

                  I’m a big guy and people never threaten me physically (to my face). I’ve defended others, in public, many times, but never had to do more than tell the aggressors to “fuck off” very loudly. About which I’m more than happy! But good on you for kicking the ass of your dog’s kicker!

                  • Thanks for that, I found it quaintly reassuring because I wasn’t sure whether I should reveal my “dark” side. In my younger days I was never one to start something, but be gorrah, I knew how to finish it if necessary. It’ not so much that I defend myself(although I wouldn’t always back down if challenged), it’s usually other people I’m defending, so I know where you’re coming from.

        • “If you take a step backwards and view it over many years, you realize that all that you observe is no more than a game, moving chess pieces and playing brag or poker – such fun eh?”

          Basically, this observation ties to the essence of the Psychopath theory of Government. Most people can’t see the mechanism at work because they judge the actions of others through the filter of their own worldview; they can’t grasp the fact that there are humans who either A) don’t mind inflicting pain or death on other humans or B) enjoy doing both and that A), at the very least, coupled with intelligence and ambition, can lead to dominance. Which is why we, the non-psychopaths, keep losing every battle; why most of the world’s most powerful institutions and nations are run by psychopaths: we non-psychopaths treasure our Innocence… we protect our Illusions…the price we pay is The World As Is. Millions of people look at BHO and HRC and Dubya, et al, and buy those smiles the way sorority girls bought Ted Bundy’s charm. They listen to pretty speeches and watch Corporate Presentations and believe. The fundamental error is repeated a thousand times a day, at every level. When will we learn?

          Even a casual reading of the Old Testament reveals that the God of the Bible is, quite clearly, a Psychopath, which explains so much about our “civilization”. A very small (genetically specific) percentage of the population has been in charge for a few thousand years and I don’t see this changing any time soon.

          • So many of those who advocate for war are in essence the very people you describe. Look to the leaders of the countries and corporations and so many of them bear a terrifying resemblance to a shared psychopathy. But even among these, there are redeemable qualities. Qadaffi was a tyrant but what he did for his country and people made them one of the most affluent civilized ME countries. The same can be said of Assad, though not the tyrant his father was, much of those who buddied up to him, ran their affairs with little consideration for those they governed and yet Assad fought even with his own Alawite council to bring about reforms and reconciliation among the many factions. It’s difficult to distinguish between power figures, but generally, those who rule with a view to the many like Assad and Qadaffi are diametrically opposite of those like Obama, Bush and Clinton whose only concerns are power for power’s sake and self enrichment with no thought for those they govern. Soros and his ilk, whether they are Kagan, Rothschild or Koche are all of a ilk far removed of their subordinates and people like myself and so many more are of absolutely no consequence unless we enrich their lives. Unfortunately their kind will never become extinct and we will not overthrow them or the power they wield and it is not about survival instincts, it’s utter contempt and their willingness to exploit that distinguishes them from the rest of us, it’s what makes them “exceptional”.

  9. John says

    I wonder how keen Eyal Weizman, director of “Forensic Architecture”, would be to provide similar characterisations involving the jailing, torturing and murder of innocent Palestinian children in zionist state jails?
    Maybe the pay is just not good enough for him?
    Or – more likely – maybe he is a zionist hasbara propaganda “asset” at heart?

    • Jen says

      As Eyal Weizman says in Tony Cartalucci’s article:

      “… Memory is the only resource within which we can start [to] reconstruct what has taken place. What does it feel like to be a prisoner in Saydnaya? …”

      Surely if he can imagine what it’s like to be a prisoner in Saydnaya Prison, surely it’s no big stretch of the imagination to imagine what it’s like to be a member of a persecuted and harassed group of people, subject to severe discrimination, abuse, imprisonment and torture because they’re Palestinian.

      But I guess Weizman’s memory is a bit on the selective side.

      • Jen, you are aiming your rant at the wrong guy: first off, Weizman doess NOT say HE can imagine (what it is like to be a prisoner)… secondly he and his forensic architecture have a long history of being activists FOR Palestinian victims of Israeli war crimes, as well as Pakastani/Afghanistan victims of USA drone attacks.

        He is a good guy doing good work. check out http://beitunia.forensic-architecture.org/ for example

        • Jen says

          Yes, from the link I see Forensic Architecture did some work for Defense for Children International – Palestine which is funded by (among others) George Soros’ Open Society Foundations and various NGOs supported by the governments of Denmark, Sweden, Switzerland and the Netherlands.


          In other words, Forensic Architecture does work for NGOs and organisations that claim to operate according to “progressive” values and principles but which actually serve a gatekeeping role to corral and control public criticism and direct it away from the object of criticism into harmless directions.

          • Yonatan says

            Whatever they are doing, it is all based on Hollywood-style graphics, made up from nothing. Then there is the total silence of Israel’s depredations of the Palestinians.

            • FYO re Weizman, from Wiki:
              “Involved in political theory through the case of Israel and other places, Weizman’s most known theoretical work describes the acts of the Israeli army as founded upon the post-structuralist French philosophers and a reading of them. He also conducted research on behalf of B’tselem on the “planning aspects of the Israeli occupation of the West Bank”.[4]
              His recent books include Mengele’s Skull: The Advent of Forensic Aesthetics, with Thomas Keenan[5] and The Least of All Possible Evils: Humanitarian Violence From Arendt to Gaza.[6] Weizman is also the author of the book Hollow Land: Israel’s Architecture of Occupation,[7]”
              His job is to analyze information given him and work up a construct using forensic studies, nothing more nor less. He cares very much about any abuse or Human Rights violations. The truth is, many governments use torture, the US/UK and if an NGO not owned by them were to ask for his services in rendering a forensic report, he would do so, regardless of any political motive.

          • Of course Forensic Architecture is available to NGO’s – they are where the funding is and their is a lot of money in the world – just not where it is needed. Weizman does his bit in many ways and is critical of any Human Rights violations, not just Syria but Israel also.
            That was the whole point of his words in trying to imagine being a prisoner in any torture facility whether it is Syria, Libya (both pleased the US) or Israel, Abu Graibe et al. No NGO is going to fund his work or pay him to do an analysis of the western or US “friends” are they?

            • Weizman’s work doesn’t matter if he doesn’t care where he gets his funding from, in my opinion. One day he’s working for the good guys and the next day he’s working for the bad guys (alongside of George Soros) does not work for me. That just makes him a mercenary.

              • So all of us must first decide whether our employer is morally scrupulous or we don’t take the job? It doesn’t quite work like that unfortunately. I’v had to work for complete assholes in my time who should have been in prison, but I went with the money (rather than without). I can’t say I’m happy that Weizman’s company is accepting work from a Soros funded corporation, but then there are not many companies in this capitalist world which are not owned by corporates and creeps. Amnesty International is as crook as a dog’s hind leg, you and I both know it, but how many others know it for certain and can afford to stand on principles that cannot be proven. I know Facebook and Google are a bunch of establishment toe rags but unfortunately they are the ones to follow until something better comes along. None of us is blameless and few can be subjective enough to aspire to lofty heights if it won’t pay the bills.

                • I’m so pleased that you think I’m a simpleton. Those who have a choice have the choice. The rest of us, no. And even those who have a choice, that doesn’t mean that it’s easy. Still, What are your principles? It’s not so much the employer we have, for most of us. It’s what we are asked to do. I’m in security. I work on a farm and my main job is to check on the animals and escort trespassers off the property (which happens seldom) and to keep an eye out for plumbing problems and such in the few buildings on the farm. But I promise you, I’d quit before I’d lift a little finger to help Israelis oppress Gazans, for example.

                  • “I’m so pleased that you think I’m a simpleton. ” I’m not falling for it. It was in response to your simplistic, black and white interpretation of Weizman’s choice of employer. What you have succeeded in doing is to distract the topic away from the real culprits – that of AI and their employers and heaped the blame on someone else to deflect their guilt. Either you did it on purpose or you fell into the trap that the neocons hope we all fall into and so deny any real criticism of AI.
                    I own a HP printer, it’s 12 years old and still going, I don’t have the money to replace it. Weizman has a business venture that is his livelihood and trying to get it off the ground and gets the job done. But how much has Weizman invested in this business venture and how much does he stand to lose if he starts being “picky” about his clients? Do you know how many people are still buying HP products? Do you know how many people are still buying “Jaffa” oranges? None of us have all the answers but if you are going to infer that I have insulted your intelligence when I point out to you that your over simplifying the many shades of grey that make up life on this planet, you are being a tad over defensive.
                    I don’t think you are simple, but you are playing the real bad guys (AI’s) game here. Focus on the people who fund directly the machinations and outright mendacity of those governments/the UN/ the corporates and bankers who fund this fake “humanitarian” industry and get angry with them. Weizman is just as much a “little guy” as the rest of us.

          • In any case, the two examples of work generated by Forensic Architecture, cited in this thread, will have disproportionate impacts on the entities they “expose”: a pinprick against Israel versus a hammer blow against Assad. And the people in charge of Media know this. Remember the “Collateral Murder” video that made Wikileaks’ reputation? On the one hand, this video, in the end, damaged the US War Machine not even a little bit… but it gave Wikileaks enough authority to help with several “Color Revolution” regime changes… in accordance with NeoLiberal goals. It’s a very old trick but it always works, so why should they change it? Weizman may or may not mean well but, in the end, who is his work helping most?

            • His work, for all we know he knows, is serving the interests of human beings who may or may not have been tortured in ways that differ from other regimes – like that of Saudi or Qatar. But amnesty International did not ask him to work on those projects, if they did(which of course is never going to happen) he would have an opportunity to vindicate his work and talent. Does he differentiate between the regimes of Israel and Saudi, or Syria and Iraq, do you know his criteria on which he bases his work? Do the thousands employed by MSM know that they serve the most corrupt institutions promoting death and suffering? You bet they do. Shall they to, be denounced for serving such vampires? The world is not black and white and we must save our energies and angst for those who have truly earned it. In this case, Weizman is just doing what he knows how to do with the information he is given, it is AI who has a hidden and egregious agenda and those who co-engineered this piece of CSI/CGI are the culpable overseers. Let’s get them first, then see where the dominoes fall?

              • “In this case, Weizman is just doing what he knows how to do with the information he is given…”

                I’m neither for nor against Weizman, since I don’t know him, M! But it’s dangerous to let whatever good faith his work earns him (when he’s hired by the not-Evil) form a Trojan Horse for the agenda when the Evil hire him. For me, in considering the AI report, Weizman is a red herring. But the “forensics” is just another word for Propaganda when it’s all fabricated, no?

                • Exactly so. It doesn’t matter who actually did the work, but the intended usage of that work which is the egregious undertow. AI have shown their true colours and sadly, despite all his good efforts on behalf of Palestinians, he will be tarred along with the rest of the malevolent tricksters of the propagandist power base. It is they, we should be going after.

              • “Do the thousands employed by MSM know that they serve the most corrupt institutions promoting death and suffering? You bet they do. Shall they to, be denounced for serving such vampires?”

                Yes, they should be. Not the janitors mopping the toilets and not the cafeteria workers, et al, obviously, but the cameramen, technicians, writers and reporters, working directly (and knowingly) with War Propaganda? If they can’t be denounced for that, what’s the point of calling it wrong? Yes: they’re complicit, they share a measure of guilt.

                • Would that we could all afford the luxury of adhering to our principles when trying to hold a home and family together. There are those who earn my total contempt because they use their ability to influence to serve their own agenda. Take Cohen – he is disgusting enough, but he is in Sarah Vines special little black book, precisely because he can play her tune. Both are shameless. Marks and Spencers share values plummeted when it was learned they were charging so much more than other clothes merchants but were using the same child labour. I doubt their employees felt proud of the fact that they worked for such a money grubbing company, but who among them could afford to walk out of their job? You don’t have to look far these days to find “dirty money” and learn that you work for it. Don’t blame the exploited, despise those who can and do exploit.

                  • “Would that we could all afford the luxury of adhering to our principles when trying to hold a home and family together.”

                    I turned down lots of Dirty Money when I was young. The older you get, of course, the less frequently you’re offered any. But I did turn it down, when it was offered, about 2 years ago. Though I have quite a few relatives (with whom I have zero contact) making piles of it.

                    • I left home when I was sixteen and back then, as long as you were prepared to work, there were jobs – provided of course you weren’t too fussy. I didn’t know anything of what I know now and times and attitudes were very different in so many ways. About eight years later I landed myself a mortgage and could no longer afford to take any old job, it had to pay well or I would lose the house. I did what I had to even though I was still always broke. I would have worked for money rather than conscience, it wouldn’t have brought me any sense of pride, but in some ways, so many of us are sheep when the subject matter is to our advantage/disadvantage. In light of today’s economic nightmare of make or break I cannot and will not condemn someone for trying to improve their lot unless they know for certain that in doing so they will cause harm to others. I don’t know what politics Weizman has or how aware he was of how his work would be represented and until he proves himself a real heel, I just believe that I am in no position to pass judgement on him – yet. Time will tell I suppose, but I still hope he will show himself to be a worthy sort.

                    • Totally agree. But I have no patience for people, for example, who sign up to work in the voluntary arm because “that was their only career choice”. It would be better… more moral… to run a ring of high-end shoplifters!

                    • I think your’e assuming the “many” are as well informed as the “few”. They’re not and many like it that way – it’s less complicated than trying to rationalize that which they might have to think about. I meet many people daily walking my dogs and with a few exceptions, they are blissfully ignorant of what’s going on anywhere else in the world. I believe Apathy should be listed up there with the seven deadly sins – it’s responsible for so much that is wrong with society. So many people just stopped caring about others and were/are content to leave it to others to carry the torch as long as their own lives aren’t disrupted. I don’t like to judge people when I do not possess the facts, but they could at least try to comprehend the world around them. Sheesh!

                • I’m not certain he knows fully, just how propagandist AI is. If he does, then he will be wishing he had other opportunities. This project for instance could have been the catalyst for whether or not he stayed in business or lost it. I won’t judge him until all the facts are in, but I will despise the AI support base – whoever they are.

      • Jen. You have got Weizman entirely wrong. He has worked for B’Tselem who are a Jewish monitoring group in the occupied territories, trying to get justice for the Palestinians. He has also written a book on the Israeli Occupation which was certainly no endorsement but in fact critical.

      • Jen says

        It would seem from the discussion that has generated regarding Eyal Weizman and Forensic Architecture, that he and his company had been hired by Amnesty International into doing work that now discredits him and FA and the work they have done in the past. FA was entitled to believe that the work they did in constructing a scenario would be supported and confirmed by actual evidence that AI would provide. Instead AI did no such thing and now the blame and derision are Weizman / FA’s to bear.

        I am now starting to feel sorry for Weizman / FA (and I apologise for my earlier comment) as from this moment on, everything they do will be questioned as to their motives. The company’s methods will now be considered suspect and the whole Saydnaya Prison report episode may be a setback for forensic science generally.

        Meanwhile AI trundles on, oblivious to the wreckage it leaves behind. Sounds a bit like the US government wherever it goes in the world.

        • ” FA was entitled to believe that the work they did in constructing a scenario would be supported and confirmed by actual evidence that AI would provide. ”

          But isn’t the evidence supposed to come first? In the best case scenario, FA’s creation of simulations meant to actually function as evidence, in lieu of evidence, is naive. But is meaning well (if that was the case) an adequate alibi when you’re providing pseudo-evidence in support of a (long-hoped-for) invasion that will mean the (additional) deaths of thousands? Shouldn’t the standards of proof be very high in Life-and-Death matters?

          • Jen says

            I think what Forensic Architecture is doing is to create templates for future cases based on information and evidence that has already been proven in past legal cases.

            The closest equivalent I can think of is the FBI and similar agencies having developed psychological profiling to identify whether certain crimes are the work of particular serial killers. The tool is certainly not foolproof and to an extent ended up being caricatured by numerous Hollywood movies and TV shows; but the original tool was based on information and evidence gathered from interviews with killers themselves and from various case studies of killers.

            • Jen: “….the original tool was based on information and evidence gathered from interviews with killers themselves and from various case studies of killers….”
              That sent shivers down my spine, but the tool they are using now is a decanted and reduced version of what was once a useful mechanism to establish facts and has been warped and twisted to represent absolutely nothing useful at all – except as a sci-fi version of whodunnit.

        • A perfect example of what a ‘honey pot’ is, no?

          If it doesn’t discredit “you” by association in the eyes of the general public, it does so among the dissident. Furthermore, “you” become an issue in your own right, a distraction that distracts attention from where it should be focused. And whether it was intended behind the scenes or not, is irrelevant: that’s the effect.

          Thank you for your insight, Jen. I wasn’t exactly seeing “it” as clearly as I am now. I think you have it exactly right.

      • Mulga Mumblebrain says

        He meant to say, ‘MEMRI is the only resource…’

        • Thanks for this one Mulga M
          MEMRI:….”Critics charge that despite portraying itself as neutral,[5] it aims to portray the Arab and Muslim world in a negative light through the production and dissemination of incomplete translations and by selectively translating views of extremists ….”

    • Sorry John but I recognised the name of Eyal Weizman because I am a member of B’Tselem and I was sure he was on the board of directors. He has done some stirling work on behalf of the Palestinian cause. No need to take my word for it because I have “copied” the entry in Wiki:
      “Involved in political theory through the case of Israel and other places, Weizman’s most known theoretical work describes the acts of the Israeli army as founded upon the post-structuralist French philosophers and a reading of them. He also conducted research on behalf of B’tselem on the “planning aspects of the Israeli occupation of the West Bank”.[4]

      His recent books include Mengele’s Skull: The Advent of Forensic Aesthetics, with Thomas Keenan[5] and The Least of All Possible Evils: Humanitarian Violence From Arendt to Gaza.[6] Weizman is also the author of the book Hollow Land: Israel’s Architecture of Occupation,[7]

      Weizman is just an architect of forensics with an ethical approach to theorization. He is not silent on the Palestinian refugee crisis. The only condemnation I can give is his willingness to get involved in AI’s report, but he is not an investigative journalist and thus his contribution is based on his knowledge of forensics and analysis of information given him – beyond his control. Did he realize that he would be involved in a propagandist stunt funded by US NGO dirty money? I don’t know, but it is not likely from what I know of him.

    • He already has. He helped B’Tselem, the Israeli monitoring group in the occupied territories to map out how the occupation could take place and how best to fight back. Just so you know, Weizman was also on the board of directors.

        • I don’t thinks so, but he himself could yet prove me wrong and you right. I would be very disappointed in him, if he were knowingly a part of something he intended to be a deception. I’m just not convinced he is guilty as charged, so I reserve judgement on him and save my denouncements for the real culprits here – they would be AI. They were the ones who sought to defame Assad and use the tools (Weizman) to accomplish their mission. In some ways, the attacks against Weizman serve to distract us from the really nasty guys, something they are no doubt pleased with. It’s only a matter of time before they throw Weizman under the bus when enough people criticize their mendacity in producing this report. No doubt it will be something along the lines of “HE misled us, rather than any wrong doing on their part. It’s not like he could prove providence on the information he was given.

  10. Jen says

    One other point Tony Cartalucci could have made about Amnesty International’s report is that in spite of its surface gleam (courtesy of Eyal Weitzman and Forensic Architecture) it’s extremely sloppy. Using gee-whiz 3-D computer-effects surface gloss is the latest variation on a time-honoured practice to deflect attention away from the lack of proper research and gathering of credible evidence from credible sources.

    That AI would stoop so low either indicates arrogance on its part or panic to come up with something to counter the Astana talks on Syria’s future or the news of US Democrat politician (and Iraq War veteran) Tulsi Gabbard’s visit to Syria spreading among Americans.

    • BigB says

      One of the more damming criticisms, highlighting the sloppiness of the report, comes from an anti-Assad blogger calling himself (?) ‘the Angry Arab.’ He (?) contacted another anti-Assad dissident, Nazir Nayouf, who questions many of the details of the report from first hand experience.
      Tulsi Gabbard’s ‘Stop Arming Terrorists’ Bill has, I believe, been gaining quite a bit of traction and support. One of the many cynical actions in the timing of this is to kill that bill stone dead. Cui bono? AI are creating a self-sustaining need for AI – supporting terrorism in order to collect millions of tax free dollars to ‘counter’ and record acts of terror. Nice work, if it weren’t for the fact that it costs other peoples lives – that is, the lives they are set up to save. Hypocrites.

    • 21 wire said exactly the same thing. The AI really does believe it is untouchable, such is their funding they cannot imagine that they would be challenged any more than the rest of the US propaganda machine.

  11. Sav says

    Both Amnesty and HRW have a very long list of total bullshit. For Syria alone that includes crap like ‘Caesar the photographer’ whose story doesn’t make any sense at all. Of course he can’t be identified either, even though if he existed the Syrian government would already know who he was. But to the idiots who lap it up that doesn’t matter.

    HRW and Amnesty also screamed about the Abu Salim massacre of over 1270 claim in Libya under Gaddafi. You can see the comparison with this BS story – that the bodies were buried outside the prison grounds. The whole claim coming from two people. One in an anti-Gaddafi militant Islamist group and the other the US claim from an unnamed Libyan claiming asylum in the US.

    If you asked them then so where are the families of these 1270 odd killed they’d claim they can’t disclose them for fear of being persecuted. Yet now that Libya is ‘liberated’ they won’t say a thing about it. MSM, including the BBC, ran a bullshit story trying to verify it claiming bones had been discovered of the dead post NATO’s fake revolution:


    Except when some journalists went there all they discovered were animal bones. No one in the MSM has spoken about it since. Likewise with all the claims made against Iraq. Sell the lies big and then move on to the next one. This is the format.

  12. BigB says

    I’m glad you posted this OffG – whilst in my heart of hearts I am morally outraged by the cynicism and malicious intent involved – I also haven’t been able to stop laughing since I read this report (and they first tried to run with the video back in August.)
    Actually, even then, I never made it past the Methodology – “we developed techniques to solicit “ear-witness testimony” and reconstruct the prison’s architecture through sound:” “We used “echo profiling”…;” “We also used “sound artefacts”…” So who exactly did they interview, keen eared cuddly headchoppers or bats?
    I’ll let others debunk this utter nonsense and comment on the absolute and calculated cynicism of the timing of this report, but I have a couple of thoughts.
    First, and most obviously, those who should (metaphorically) be strung from a rope and left gurgling for ten minutes (a detail cited in the report) are those who collaborated on this Amnesty entirely ‘#FakeNews’ propaganda; and the likes of the Guardian and the BBC that propagate it.
    Second, there will come a time when we have to fight back against the blatant lies and the lives they cost. Like Baldrick, I have a cunning plan. If Section 40 of Leveson (now Section 40 of the Crime and Courts Act 2013) becomes fully ratified – all it would take is for a group of like minded people to crowdfund a Public Interest lawyer (there must be at least one) to sue the Guardian. Win, lose or draw – they will be liable for our costs. After the first win, the cycle becomes self-perpetuating. Eat, sleep, repeat until the Scott Trust has dried up. You can put me down for the first £50. De nada.
    I shouldn’t have thought there was a need, but 21st Century Wire have collated around a dozen articles that absolutely destroy this ‘humanitarian terrorist’ report.

    • I, too, use “echo profiling” and “sound artefacts” to make sense of the world, as well as “ear-witness testimony.” In fact, most of what I know about anything at all is known to me through these techniques.

      But I learned in due course that not all of the sources of these echos and sounds and testimonies were equally reliable.

      Indeed, some — many, even — are ‘made up’ and ‘contrived’ and ‘repeated’ to exploit my susceptibility to ‘believe.’

      Like when I’m being told Building 7 just folded up as it did because of ‘fire’ and ‘fire’ alone. It doesn’t square with the little bit I actually know and understand about physics. And in the moment that that dawns on me, I am suddenly able to discriminate between a whole slew of con artists and truth-seeking truth-tellers.

      But yes, you read this, and you do want to laugh. But then I think about the crimes “they” abet by means of their fairy-tales, and realize that often ‘laughing’ is the only thing that keeps me from committing suicide, that and something akin to anger.

      Yup, it’s really fucked up, eh.

      • When I first read how the Amnesty report was compiled I felt a sense of being defeated. That they could get away with it, but also that people reading it and understanding of AI’s own statements on how it was cobbled together leaves me wondering how in the world people can accept this as anything but total codswallop and rebel against it. Then comes the anger at being made to feel so futile in redressing this wrong – that’s when I want to fight back and enlist others to use their disgust and battle against it.

    • An international campaign organized with the sole objective of literally embarrassing or forcing Amy Goodman to interview Eva Bartlett, Vanessa Beeley, Tulsi Gabbard and Elizabeth Kucinich seems like a timely, powerful idea to counteract this extremely dangerous report coming out of Amnesty International.

      This isn’t the 1st time Ms. Goodman and her Democracy Now have presented anti-Assad, pro “humanitarian” intervention, fake news and/or propaganda, but for the love of God and the Syrian people it should, with a worldwide internet campaign as described, be the last. Now is the moment for getting very, very serious with Amy Goodman, especially when one understands Amnesty International’s ultimate objective with this report is war.

      • jmrpress says

        I wish someone would figure out how to start a campaign to reform DNow. I too am fed up with their Syria coverage.

        • BigB had a good suggestion which we might be able to co-ordinate. So many Blogs are reporting on this AI propaganda and they in turn have their followers, so call me naive, but could it not be possible? A word with Global Research from blog sites such as OffG and several mentioned in the comments section here and elsewhere could actually see us on the way to a crowdfunding. The petition sites might also agree(38 degrees)to collect names in denouncement of the egregious and propagandist nature of this AI report. We ourselves could visit the many opponents to this report and collect petition signatures. Perhaps we could appeal to some of those named in 21Wire to help facilitate such an enterprise. Personally I’d like nothing better than to collect signatures directed at every fake MSM denouncing their misinformation etc. I couldn’t put out a lump sum but would be willing to pay a monthly PayPal sum to an acknowledged representative of a cause such as the one’s I have outlined and to BigB’s suggested. Wishful thinking I know, but if only!

      • I’m with you on this – it would be a start. The reason the MSM are winning the info war with their fake news is that millions who follow alt. news are isolated in a big way. If they had some sort of umbrella co-operative, they would have a much larger/greater impact. Many months ago, on my own blog, I made a list of all the sites I visit as recommended but haven’t updated it since. Unfortunately, no-one reads my re-blog. It needs one brave and selfless blog site to do just that, but of course it all boils down to money, each site is dependent on funding from their visitors, but there are sites who do actually use articles by other alt. news sites rather like a newspaper so you can pick and choose what you want to read. What an impact such a news distributor in print would have if it were available to debunk all the lies and misinformation of the MSM. Al Jazeera was promising at first but as soon as it got news time on US airways it became another propagandist tool, until the staff walked out(16 of them). Based in Doha, Qatar, it was always doomed to failure with regard fair representation of the war on Syria, Libya and Iraq.
        Even at the cost of looking like a naive fool I think I will send some invitations out to Alt. News Sites requesting their involvement.

  13. “Eyal Weizman, director of “Forensic Architecture”

    Maybe he can also do a cartoon on how Bin Laden hijacked those airliners on 9/11 and also managed to blow up WTC 6 from the inside and steal hundreds of millions worth of gold and silver bullion from WTC 4?

    Syria might be winning some battles, but the war goes on, with civilians being slaughtered by US/SA/Qatar/Israeli backed thugs who want to destroy Syria so the Zionists can enlarge their Eretz Israel by stealing more land. Then it will be on to Tehran, where real men want to go to kill, murder, rape and terrorize, just like they’ve done in Iraq, Libya and Syria.

  14. Reblogged this on Worldtruth and commented:

    Well presented. I first read this on 21st wire in which they acknowledge Tony Cartalucci as their source with others including Brandon Turbeville, Moon of Alabama, Scott Creighton, Patrick Henningsen and a whole host of other good names like Proff. Francis Boyle. Amnesty International has previously been shown to use false witness and gerrymandering of facts in other contexts as well, including but not limited to the Donbass conflict. Despite being exposed for their shennanigans they obviously believe that not enough of us are aware of their true nature. For me, Amnesty International has lost all credibility and not just with this report. Now OffG has put it up we can reach a greater audience with the facts – the more reputed Blogs putting it out there the better!
    It’s time to let AI know they are not the untouchables.

  15. Well presented. I first read this on 21st wire in which they acknowledge Tony Cartalucci as their source with others including Brandon Turbeville, Moon of Alabama, Scott Creighton, Patrick Henningsen and a whole host of other good names like Proff. Francis Boyle. Amnesty International has previously been shown to use false witness and gerrymandering of facts in other contexts as well, including but not limited to the Donbass conflict. Despite being exposed for their shennanigans they obviously believe that not enough of us are aware of their true nature. For me, Amnesty International has lost all credibility and not just with this report. Now OffG has put it up we can reach a greater audience with the facts – the more reputed Blogs putting it out there the better!
    It’s time to let AI know they are not the untouchables.

      • Frank says

        Amnesty International is also in receipt of funding from – you know who – George Soros. Ergo, no further analysis needed.

        • One of the sites I used to support was funded by Soros and despite being a supposed Humanitarian corporation, I withdrew my support tout de suite.

          • The site I used to support because of it’s humanitarian and good works, but which was funded by George Soros was AVAAZ.

        • Well, George is good for one thing, I see. He’s a litmus test. One needn’t do forensic analysis in order to know whether this or that org or individual is with the 1%, if we see that it or he getting hands out from GS. Another one I recently blogged about is Craig Murray role in the ‘leaks’ of the Clinton emails. If the individual or organization ‘explains’ the leak/hack debacle without mentioning Craig Murray…

Please note the opinions expressed in the comments do not necessarily reflect those of the editors or of OffG as a whole