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ISRAEL’S bombing of Syria is a classic “dead cat” ploy to switch attention away from slaughter of unarmed Palestinian protesters in Gaza to unproven charges of chemical warfare by Damascus.
“Don’t look at this. Look at that,” is the message as Tel Aviv slings the dead cat of retribution for alleged use of chlorine gas onto the stage.
The scenario was well prepared by its Nato allies, with government, media, security experts and NGOs accepting unquestioningly the “evidence” served up, at the behest of the Jaish al-Islam jihadists, by their “civil defence” White Helmet cohorts.
The White Helmets are financed largely by Nato countries and Japan, operating only within areas of Syria where jihadists hold sway.
They release heartstring-tugging videos of their volunteers rescuing children from destroyed buildings, splashing water over alleged chlorine gas victims and speaking from hospitals under attack.
They provide scripts to Western TV networks so that reporters can read out the approved message from Beirut or even London newsrooms to convey the one-sided picture that Nato governments, autocratic Gulf states and Israel wish to project.
At no time do Western media houses explain that they don’t report directly on the heroic resistance to Assad in western Aleppo, Khan Sheikhoun or eastern Ghouta because past experience teaches them that journalists, charity workers and NGO staff risk having their heads sawn off by the brave jihadist resisters.
Western powers accept that Damascus uses chlorine and other chemical weapons because it suits their agenda of justifying efforts to overthrow the Assad regime.
The regime did possess such weapons, but Moscow made military backing conditional on their disposal and such has been the scale of Russian support that Bashar al-Assad would have had to be away with the fairies to use chlorine gas, especially when the military balance has turned significantly in the regime’s favour.
As George Galloway has often said — aware of Assad’s authoritarianism and record of recourse to torture and repression — “Everyone knows they're bad enough to do it, but is he mad enough to do it?”
No-one should be surprised that Israel has acted as it has.
Apart from shifting the spotlight from Gaza, it has consistently succoured jihadist groups opposed to Assad, to the extent of providing air cover and taking wounded fighters across the border to be patched up and returned to the fray.
For Tel Aviv, the threat posed by Syria’s alliance with Iran and Lebanese resistance group Hezbollah supersedes any danger from al-Qaida affiliates or other jihadists.
It beggars belief, however, that Britain, the EU and the US may be preparing for further adventurist attacks on Syria on the desperate say-so of a terrorist group on the brink of military defeat.
Moscow warned months ago, as the Syrian government multi-pronged offensive began rolling, that the opposition would stage a chemical weapons stunt to inveigle further military interference by US imperialism and its allies.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov insists that Russian specialists and aid workers entering Douma have found no evidence of a chemical weapons attack there.
They could be lying and so could he, but it’s fair to say that Lavrov is generally viewed as more truthful than, say, Boris Johnson.
If Nato-state experts and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons genuinely believe that chlorine was used, they could ask to visit the area to verify the facts.
If they choose instead to reprise Israel’s piratical example, this will confirm their obsession with prioritising regime change in Damascus over international law.
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