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Tuesday, April 4, 2017

After Trump drops "Assad removal" from US goals, Assad drops sarin again

There has been another chemical weapons attack in Syria today, and again many children died. This attack happened a few days after Trump officials announced that Assad need no longer concern himself with US efforts to topple him.

This latest attack took place in Idlib. Idlib is the place the survivors of the brutal assault on Aleppo were evaluated to.  Now Idlib has been coming under attack by the same Russian/Iranian/Assadist forces that massacred Aleppo. According the Aleppo Media Center, now in Idlib, 70 have died so far and about 500 have been injured. The hospital where many were being treated was also attacked.

On 21 August 2013 Assad's forces killed more than 1400, including including more than 300 children with sarin. Although the Assad regime vigorously denied responsibility for that attack or any CW attack in Syria, it agreed to give up most of its chemical weapons capabilities. [Later it was found to have cheated and held some back.] Since then there have been dozens of attacks using chlorine gas as a weapon. At least 3 have been investigated and blamed on Assad by the United Nations.

Early reports indicate that this attack is difference. It was not chlorine, which has a very distinct odor and color and typically only kills people caught in enclosed spaces. This was something new and far more deadly. Most investigators have already concluded that it was sarin or some similar nerve agent.

While chemical weapons have been proven to be largely ineffective on the battlefield against troops equip and trained to defend against them. They also proved to be a very effective weapons against rebellions because they could be quite efficient at killing an unprepared civilian population, especially children, the old, and infirmed, while keeping property damage to a minimum, and this is how they were widely used before World War I. The horror at their use in that war enabled a worldwide campaign that forced their ban in 1925.

Surprisingly, that ban had largely stood the test of time before the Syrian conflict. Although there was Saddam Hussein's use of CW against the Kurds at Halabja in 1988, it was one of a very few mass casualty attacks since World War II  - until the Syrian conflict. Now it is in danger of becoming normalized. It is also now being used in the Sudan.

Chemical weapons use is making a come back and it is entirely against people in rebellion. Assad had already been using tanks, artillery, rockets, napalm, cluster bombs, barrel bombs and small amounts of chemical weapons to massacre his people before Obama's proclamation. Exactly, a year before the massive sarin attack, US President Barack Obama acknowledge his acceptance of all that when he drew his famous "red-line" and said Assad would cross it only by using "a whole bunch of chemical weapons."

Clearly a "a whole bunch of chemical weapons" had been used on 21 August 2013, and in the refugee camps and the cities besieged by Assad, they were calling upon Obama to honor his pledge. Now he needed a way to weasel out of it.

The US peace and justice movement became active on the Syrian conflict in a big way for the first time. It opposed any military response to the use of sarin in Syria. Many questioned the evidence that Assad was behind the massacre. They addressed themselves only to representatives of their own bourgeoisie, while ignoring the complaints and evidence presented by the Syrians under attack.

Assad started using chemicals again within months of the US failure to enforce Obama's year-old "red-line" prohibition against them, and he has been quietly using them ever since. Quietly, because he has largely stuck with low level chlorine attacks, and quietly because the world's media and the world's governments have seen fit not to make too big a fuss about them.

When the UN scientists compared the sarin used in the attack with the sarin surrendered by Assad, they concluded that the sarin that killed the children came from Assad's arsenal. That didn't stop Assad supporters on the "Left" from denying Assad complicity or even treating it as a real tragedy. They treat it like it never even happened. Listen to the off-handed way Mike Whitney referred to this massive and tragic loss of life recently in counterpunch, when he still thought Clinton was going to win in spite of his best efforts, 8 Nov 2016 [my bold]:
The public probably feels equal contempt for the Loretta Lynch Justice Department which is loaded with Clinton toadies that have done their best to quash any investigation into the illicit pay-to-play machinations at the Clinton Foundation. And, let’s not forget the media which has lost whatever shred of credibility it managed to salvage after its myriad of war-promoting lies about WMD, mobile weapons labs, aluminum tubes and Assad’s imaginary chemical weapons attacks, attacks that were invented from whole cloth at one of Washington’s many neocon think tanks where these fake ideas are typically hatched. 
The WMD, mobile weapons labs, and aluminum tubes used to justify war on Iraq were fake. Lumping Assad's very real sarin attack on East Ghouta into that list is a crime. 

Now we can expect these same forces to come out again in defense of Assad. It may be a little harder this time because all eyewitness reports say the chemical weapons were dropped from aircrafts and the opposition doesn't have any. No matter. Assad and Putin have already denied any responsibility and their minions have no choice but to follow their lead like Sean Spicer follows Trump.

So now the circle is joined as these long time Putin/Assad supporters on the "Left" turn themselves into Trump supporters.

We now know that Larry Johnson, one of the signers of the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity [VIPS], statement in support of Assad during the sarin crisis was the ultimate source of President Trump's claim that Obama had his phone tapped at Trump Tower. Trump say he got it from Judge Napolitano but the judge say he got it from Larry Johnson.

And former congressman Dennis Kucinich, long time supporter of Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi and Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, has now come out to support Trump's wiretapping story.

Talk about chickens coming home to roost.

My blogs on the chemical weapons attacks in Syria:
09/29/2016 Chemical Weapons attacks expand beyond Syria
08/20/2016 Amy Goodman should address this extremely important statement by her guest
01/05/2016 Luna Watfa: Enemy of Syrian State admitted sarin photos were fakes!
12/15/2015 Truth Revealed: 2013 East Ghouta sarin attack was done by aliens!
11/16/2015 The Imperial Left's sarin song: still "Regime Change" after all these years!
02/02/2015 How the Left's shill for Obama's red-line con fueled the rise of ISIS
01/27/2015 With Left support, Assad continues to kill in East Ghouta
04/13/2014 After Hersh lays smoke screen, Assad lobes gas bombs
04/10/2014 Seymour Hersh's chemical weapons fetish
04/08/2014 Seymour Hersh's Believe It or Don't
03/09/2014 UN: Assad sarin used in attacks | The Left's response?
02/04/2014 While Assad's CW is 95.9% intact, Qaddafi's is 100% destroyed
01/28/2014 Ex-journalist Robert Fisk: One is reminded of Goebbels
12/09/2013 Whose Seymour Hersh?
11/24/2013 How Obama has supported Assad's gas murder always
10/14/2013 Why the return of chemical weapons is a big deal
10/07/2013 The Courage of Ghouta in a Craven World
10/02/2013 The Courtship Continues: Obama stopped French strike on Assad
09/26/2013 More on ex-journalist Robert Fisk's defense of Assad
09/25/2013 Where Robert Fisk's defense of Assad falls down
09/23/2013 Desmond Tutu: UN owes it to Syria's children to act
09/20/2013 Mint Press exposed as Assad apologist, AntiWar.com apologizes
09/16/2013 UN hints Assad used Russian rockets in sarin gas attack
09/12/2013 BREAKING: New Chemical Attack reported in Syria
09/09/2013 Secret Intel Source of Ray McGovern & VIPS Revealed!
09/09/2013 Why did Assad Regime first Deny CW Attack if Blameless?
09/09/2013 Witness to CW Attack: When Paradise turned to Hell.
09/08/2013 Dr. Zaher Sahloul on the CW Attacks in Syria
09/08/2013 Why would Assad use CW with UN Inspectors in Syria?
09/07/2013 My dare to Ray McGovern & VIPS on Syria CW attack
09/03/2013 Who Used Sarin in Syria?
09/02/2013 Recycled Lies: Critique of the Kucinich letter on Syria
09/02/2013 How Obama Helped Assad Kill with Poison Gas in Syria
08/31/2013 Win-Win for Assad as Obama Response to CW Put on Hold
08/30/2013 Obama Denied Gas Masks to Assad's Victims
08/22/2013 AntiWar.com Disparages Chemical Attack in Syria
08/21/2013 Assad Knows: Chemical Attacks Kill Children First!
08/21/2013 1300+ Dead after Obama "Green-lights" new CW attack in Syria
08/05/2013 Syria: New Poison Gas Attacks Reported in #Douma & #Adra
06/03/2013 More False Reports of Sarin Usage by Assad's Opposition in Syria
05/13/2013 Jon Steward weighs in on Obama's "red-line" in Syria
05/10/2013 Obama's "Red-Line" was nothing but a Green Light for Assad's Slaughter of 70,000
05/06/2013 Syria Sarin Blame Game: Is Carla Del Ponte at it again?
04/29/2013 Other Echoes of Iraq in NATO response to WMD in Syria
03/14/2013 Reports say Iran sending more arms to Assad as he prepares chemical weapons
01/15/2013 US: Assad didn't use chemical weapons in Syria
01/15/2013 BREAKING: FP says Obama ignored chemical weapons attack by Assad in Syria
01/06/2013 NY Times: Assad has sarin in bombs at airfields
12/26/2012 BREAKING: Defecting General confirms use of chemical weapons in Syria
12/22/2012 BREAKING: Chemical weapons first use reported in Syria
09/14/2012 Barack Obama's Courtship of Bashar al-Assad
08/23/2012 Assad's Redline and Obama's Greenlight!
08/20/2012 Obama "green lights" Assad's slaughter in Syria

Picasso's famous antiwar painting Guernica commemorated the bombing of that Basque town 80 years ago on 26 April 1937
Syria is the Paris Commune of the 21st Century!

Click here for my posts on the 2016 US Election
Click here for a list of my other blogs on Syria
Click here for a list of my other blogs on Libya

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