Homage to Syria

Aidan O’Brien in Counterpunch:

A strange thing happened the other week. The US president officially ordered the CIA to halt it’s war against Syria. So it wasn’t global warming then, or “Assad” or neoliberalism, it wasn’t even a civil war. The war maker in Syria was the CIA. Of course, the CIA will unofficially continue it’s war against Syria. But we can savour for a moment the truth. And an “official CIA defeat”.
And why only savour? Why not rejoice? Because this momentous “victory” may be the turning point in the century old Western assault on the Muslim people. What many call the “arc of resistance” (Shiite and Secular) has now solidified, while the Western imperial offensive has faltered.
US general Wesley Clark gave the game away years ago when he revealed US intentions in the Middle East after 9/11: seven countries were to be invaded (Iraq, Libya, Syria, Lebanon, Somalia, Sudan and Iran). France’s ex-foreign minister Roland Dumas also gave the game away when he revealed that the British State (a definite CIA asset) was preparing for a war on Syria two years before the start of the Syrian Holocaust in 2011. And the investigative journalist Seymour Hersh gave the game away too in his 2007 New Yorker article: “The Redirection”. In this piece he revealed how the US were hooking up once again with the Saudi/Sunni fundamentalists in and around Syria.
And if all this revelation wasn’t enough – Wikileaks exposed the machinations of the US embassy in Damascus in the first decade of this century. Destabilisation was it’s agenda. CIA “diplomacy” was the rule. In short, Syria was in the cross-hairs of the Empire. In fact it has been so for the last sixty or so years. Plans for mayhem in Syria have been on the imperial table since the 1950s (Operation Straggle).
All this conspiring fused like an atomic bomb over Syria in 2011. However the Syrian resistance to it and eventual “victory” over it isn’t receiving the enormous credit and respect it deserves. Syria took a hit for humanity. And has scored a victory for humanity. And humanity – or at least the Western part of it – chooses to look the other way.
Western “humanitarians” blame Syria for the Syrian Holocaust. The reports of Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch (both on intimate terms with the US State Department) pour nothing but scorn upon the Syrian Arab Republic. And even some Western radicals blame Syria. From the get-go Noam Chomsky wanted regime change. And “a thousand and one” other leftists honoured the Kurds in northern Syria and other revolutionary illusions rather than say anything good about the Syrian Republic.
In the grotesquely distorted Western account of the war on Syria: the many ways of Western imperialism was and still is missing. The CIA and it’s modus operandi was and still is not being held to account: the buying of informers, traitors, journalists, mercenaries, movies, oscars, etc..
In a classic case of shameless liberalism – when it came to Syria the covert and overt actions of the West were sidelined and one “foreign” individual was highlighted: the Syrian President.
And in a disappointing display of critical thinking a large proportion of the Western left ended up pointing at one “foreigner” too: the Syrian President.
While the right wing Western habit has always been to blame foreigners or strangers. The postmodern (post-revolutionary) Western left have fallen into the same habit. Why this blunt criticism? Why the reluctance to acknowledge the greatest anti-imperialist victory in postmodern times?
Because a “dictator” is responsible for it? So? The Republic’s life was on the line! Does that existential point not register in Western heads? Are we blind to the genocidal results of our Western policies when they’re imposed on vulnerable Third World nations? Are we so pure that we can’t acknowledge an alternative political model? Syria’s President could have abandoned ship. But he actually acted like a President. He stayed when it would have been easier to run.
In the West our Presidents give up resisting injustice at the first sign of trouble. In Europe, for example, not one dares to fight the enemies of the people (The European Central Bank and NATO). So we’re unaccustomed to seeing a leader with backbone. When we do see one we think it’s unbelievable. They’re must be something wrong. He must be a “dictator”. When in fact it’s the other way around: Western “capitalist democracy” is the dictatorship – especially when it’s exported to the non-West.
In postmodern times the Western concern or support for “Arab revolution” is fake. It has no basis. Therefore for Westerners to stand on the sidelines and lecture Syria about “revolution” is crass. To put it bluntly: we in the West today have no revolutionary credentials. So what makes us experts on “revolution” anywhere? Indeed why do we see it where it is not? Why is our judgement of Syria based on the highest revolutionary standards when a voracious imperial force is clearly out to destroy it? Why do we project our own desires for change on a people that just want to survive a Holocaust. The self righteous Western criticism of Syria is to say the least misplaced. To say the most: it has been an unwitting victim of a CIA media blitzkrieg.
And the neoliberal nature of Syria? Every country in the world today is more or less neoliberal. But apart from Libya no other country has been torn asunder like Syria. Something else was the cause of the Syrian Holocaust. To explain “Syria” by pointing to the neoliberal breakdown of society therefore is a crass cop out. And the reluctance to point at the CIA as the cause during the last six years has been cowardly.
We know the CIA’s record. Cuba, Chile, Nicaragua, Congo, Angola, Vietnam, Indonesia, Laos, etc.. The secret wars and secret destabilisation campaigns are not a secret anymore. So why the innocence when it comes to Syria? In three words: the Arab Spring.
However after six years of horror the “Spring” narrative makes no sense. In Syria’s case its a blindfold. Since when did CIA activities ever amount to being a “Spring”? It has been a well crafted distraction. The great irony though is that today after the “victory” of the Syrian Republic, we’re likely to see a real Syrian Renaissance – a genuine Spring of the Syrian people.
And before someone says “Russian Imperialism” let’s push that idea aside. The fact is that the Russian economy is smaller than California’s. It simply doesn’t have the the economic capacity to be an empire. And to suggest otherwise is farcical. To repeat our main point: the life of the Syrian Republic was on the line during the last few years. Therefore the Republic had every right to use whatever advantage it had. In wars “allies” are a fact of life.
As regards Russia’s “rush” to help Syria – the best analogy is the Cuban rush to help Angola in the 1970s. Cuba’s entry into that CIA war wasn’t “Cuban imperialism” but an act of international solidarity. And it changed the history of modern Africa for the better. It was the beginning of the end of apartheid South Africa.
And that’s precisely the significance of the Syrian victory. By patriotically fighting and by defeating the killing machine of the West the Syrian people have not just saved their country but have saved their region from further destruction. And if this is the case then it is the beginning of the end of apartheid Israel.

Aleppo residents celebrate the city’s liberation from jihadi terrorists along with the new year of 2017.


co-founding editor of OffGuardian (retired)

Filed under: conflict zones, latest


co-founding editor of OffGuardian (retired)

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Based on the indubitable fact that the CIA, partners, subcontractors etc will murder any elected US President who does not let them continue their global genocides, arms sales and drug trafficking, the case is indubitably made to issue a kill order, which can be carried out by any human being on earth, on every living CIA operative anywhere in the world.
Then get Charlie Hebdo and global like-minded satirists to run a CIA recruitment campaign: ‘Join the CIA. Become a genocidal terrorist. And die before you have children.’
That will up the recruitment figures no end…


Vanessa Beeley and Patrick Henningsen personal testimonies from their experiences in Syria (on location April May 2017) 21 Century Wire.


There do seem to be some initial errors in the article, two that seem obvious,
“…The US president officially ordered the CIA to halt it’s war against Syria…” – I thought the CIA were instructed to close a particular program they were running in Syria? (washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/trump-ends-covert-cia-program-to-arm-anti-assad-rebels-in-syria-a-move-sought-by-moscow/2017/07/19)
“…The war maker in Syria was the CIA…” – What about Israel, Qatar, Saudi Arabia,Turkey, UK, France etc,etc?
If the piece were confined to CIA involvement only then it’s assertions have plausibility. Given continued operations, for example the US constructing over eleven bases in Syria, Mr Netanyahu’s assertion of an Iranian bridgehead in Syria hence Israel reserving the right to invade, the optimistic view that,
“…is that today after the “victory” of the Syrian Republic, we’re likely to see a real Syrian Renaissance – a genuine Spring of the Syrian people…”
really shouldn’t be offered.


Unfortunately, the article contains a number of misstatements:
“The CIA will unofficially continue it’s war against Syria”. No it won’t: in fact the CIA will unofficially continue its war against Syria.
“The US president officially ordered the CIA to halt it’s war against Syria.” No, he didn’t: what happened was that the US president officially ordered the CIA to halt its war against Syria.
“Destabilisation was it’s agenda.” No, it wasn’t: in truth, destabilisation was its agenda.
“The CIA and it’s modus operandi was and still is not being held to account.” No, they aren’t: the CIA and its modus operandi were and still are not being held to account.
“In Syria’s case its a blindfold.” No, it isn’t: in Syria’s case it’s actually a blindfold.
Fortunately, there are also a few correct examples:
“When we do see one we think it’s unbelievable.” We do indeed.
“When in fact it’s the other way around: Western “capitalist democracy” is the dictatorship – especially when it’s exported to the non-West.” Absolutely.
Tick the right alternative:
a) Its driving me round the bend.
b) It’s driving me round the bend.


You are driving us round the bend. Errors in apostrophe-placing punctuation are not mis-statements. They are….errors in apostrophe-placing, no worse. Certainly wrong, but hardly worth such a hostile rant while there is so much more to consider.

To Shay

Reblogged this on Middle Eastern Eye.


Everyone’s favourite CIA mole Louis Proyect has written an article for Counterpunch whose title pretty much tells you all you need to know: “White Supremacist Support for Assad in Charlottesville (and Beyond)”. I don’t envision Proyect and Aidan O’Brien having too many beers together.


Louis Proyect, friend of the ‘Left’, along with Juan Cole.


If you’re interested, here’s the Proyect article:
I got as far as this bit:
“Like a Rorschach test, the Syrian dictatorship is open to multiple interpretations. To really get to the bottom of this complex and dialectically contradictory phenomenon of Baathist rule, it is necessary to place it into the context of two historical sea changes that have marked this epoch.”
I could sense Proyect’s desperation and couldn’t be bothered reading on – although I did note that he later refers to Hitler which is never a good sign.


Thanks for the link to the Proyect article. I managed to wade through the whole lot. He seems to be saying that: 1) governments that provide social welfare benefits are Nazis; 2) Trump, Putin and Assad are really horrible and (or because they) are supported by fascists; 3) overthrowing any or all of these three would actually be a victory for the working class.
So I suppose we should all get behind the CIA in the cause of Marxist solidarity. I have to admit the logic baffles me.


I just don’t have the time or energy to read the whole thing now. I went through about half. (I’m into my 12 shifts, 3 in a row and can’t do much.) He’s clever and vile. And the one observation I would make is that writers like Gowans need to be 100% honest in their reportage. Gowans is attempting to bring order to the chaos of the establishment narrative or narratives about Syria and he’s done a fantastic job. The State lies and the corporate owned media is aiding and abetting it and reportage – real news – like that of Gowans and others is vital. And behind it all, as people like Stephen Gowans and Paul Kellog (https://youtu.be/q9DBQqwcDCU ) make clear, is big, uncaring, unprincipled business, namely people who like the service that people like Proyect provide. For which reason, Keeping out any negative but factual info about Assad in order to make his narrative more solid gives an opening to people like Proyect.
For example, Did Assad’s intelligence service work with the U.S. government in torturing those who the CIA wanted to really put through the ringer, which they felt they couldn’t so easily do themselves? We have a number of examples, including Maher Arar (who is either an idiot [going by an article he wrote and which I found on Roger Annis’s website], or worse, as Barbara McKenzie believes). Alfred McCoy (who, alarmingly, quotes the New York Times, Washington Post [media] and Human Rights Watch [ngo] almost exclusively in his book “A Question Of Torture”) mentions Syria’s torture services repeatedly. Assorted foreign countries’ intelligence agencies, including Syria’s, together with the CIA’s eight black sites formed the American gulag into which hapless victims disappeared. Chomsky has good things to say about McCoy. Douglas Valentine relied on his, and others’, assistance in writing his book (in which he displays Camelotism) “The Pheonix Program.” And McCoy believes that Maher Arar’s story is true. Therefore I’m inclined to believe that torture went on in Syria under Bashar al-Assad.
Especially when people, readers of your books, already know such things does failing to acknowledge them hurt your reportage. Maybe you are trying to keep your story focussed and that’s all. Maybe that’s not all it is. Even good people lie, sadly. Those of us who feel the same way about things as Stephen Gowan are one thing. Then there’s those like Louis Proyect who don’t feel the same way about imperialism and neoliberal capitalism as we do, who we don’t need to give any assistance to via dishonesty or something close to it.
Personally, I like ‘all’ the facts. Maybe I can use them in ways you don’t see – while you’re worried that your perfect story might not be so perfect if you’re perfectly forthcoming, which, in fact, is not something that will harm a truthful report.


In January 2017, Louis Proyect honored me by labeling me “antisemite” for pulling his pants.
David North (Jewish) Chair of WSWS said: Louis Proyect has absolutely nothing to do with the politics, principles and culture of the Marxist movement. His blog, were it correctly named, would be called “The Unrepentant Liar.”
British Jewish blogger Ben Norton reported Louis Proyect supported al-Nusra and al-Qaeda against Syrian president Bashar al-Assad.
Proyect blogs at anti-Islam website, “Critical Muslim” – describing himself, “Journalist, blogger, and non-Jewish Jew.”


If CIA sponsored the six-year bloodshed in Syria – it was certainly not for the US. Assad never threatened United States or its Arab allies in the region. The only regime which considers a threat is the Zionist regime – not a direct threat but Syria’s alliance with Iran and Lebanese Hizbullah.
I also don’t buy the story that Donald Trump has asked CIA to stop arming the pro-Israel Al-Nusra terrorists because if did – he signed his death warrant like JFK.
The regime change in Syria has been Israeli Project since day one. On June 18, 2017, the Wall Street Journal, owned by Israel-First Australian multi-billionaire Rupert Murdock, reported that Israel funds ISIS in Syria. Recently, Netanyahu admitted that Israeli doctors in Jewish-occupied Syrian Golan Heights were treating anti-Assad wounded rebels on humanitarian basis. This is same bloodthirsty creep who defend Israeli soldiers killing Palestinian minors.


So very well said !