Tag Archive | "Western Media"

Western Media Calls Hugo Chavez a “Dictator”, While Endorsing a “Real Dictator” in Saudi Arabia


An NBC news article on Venezuela stated

Thanks to the “free press” how many people would know any better? Even Bernie Sanders’ campaign was ignorant (or dishonest) enough to call the late Hugo Chavez a dictator. Hugo Chavez and current president Nicolas Maduro were both democratically elected, but when Washington (and its accomplices in Ottawa and London) want a foreign government overthrown the corporate media is always eager to help. Facts will not stand in the way.

When the media isn’t calling Maduro and Chavez dictators outright, it does all it can to insinuate that they are. It is unsurprising that they simply label them dictators from time to time. Almost two decades of propaganda pays off.

But surely a more liberal outlet, like say the Guardian in the UK, would be better – less subservient in its reporting to the foreign policy objectives of the US and its allies.

Well no. Not at all.

In recent days the Guardian has been passing off unabashed PR pieces for Saudi Arabia – perhaps the most brutal and backward dictatorship on Earth – as news articles. Saudi Arabia is also being heavily armed by the US, UK and Canada as it perpetrates a slaughter in Yemen, so it literally gets the royal treatment from the western press.

Below are two stomach churning examples from recent days.

As FAIR pointed out, hyping “reform” in Saudi Arabia has a been regular feature of corporate news for at least the past 15 years, especially for one high profile pundit. Any reader who casually imbibes corporate media “news” over the past two decades will be dismayed by “repression” in Venezuela but feel hopeful about “reform” in Saudi Arabia. The propaganda system works and big NGOs like Human Rights Watch are part of it, not just the corporate media.

Consider how Human Rights Watch wrote about the death of King Abdullah in Saudi Arabia.

Mild criticism combined with upbeat spin about “reform” for the late US–armed beheader-in-chief.

Now consider what Human Rights Watch put out a few hours after the death of Chavez.

Harsh criticism and not a positive word about a democratically elected president who greatly reduced poverty in his country despite the US-backed opposition’s efforts to overthrow him by force.

Recently, Ken Roth, head of Human Rights Watch, called Nicolas Maduro a “buffoon” on Twitter. I reminded Roth that he called his own mass murdering government “the world’s most powerful proponent of human rights”.

Do you want rich western states to have civilized foreign policy? Prepare to do battle with liberals like Ken Roth and the editors of the Guardian.

Posted in Media, Saudi Arabia, VenezuelaComments (0)

On Returning from Syria: More Convinced than Ever Western Media Narrative Is Bulls**t


In early October, 2017, I had the pleasure of visiting Syria on a mission to get a sense of the toll of the war, the mindset of the people, and the general situation on the ground. The goal was to see the country in person, get a sense of what life is like in Syria today, talk to the Syrian people and hear their side of things; i.e. their opinions on the government and the “rebels/terrorists,” their living conditions, Syria before the war versus Syria now, and whatever else they wanted to share. We wanted to see the areas formerly under control of the terrorists and talk to the residents there. We also wanted to visit the areas firmly under government control and speak to the residents living in these areas as well.

Having covered the Syrian crisis for the entire six years of its duration, I had a pretty good sense of the opinions of the Syrian people and the situation they are facing as a result of numerous contacts inside Syria. However, there is no substitute for examining a situation first hand and talking with Syrians themselves with whom one has no prior personal connection as well as random strangers on the street in order to get an unfiltered response to the many questions we wanted to ask.

After having the chance to visit many of the places I had written about during the course of the crisis, everything I have written has now been confirmed first hand. I am now more convinced than ever that the “information” being spread across mainstream media outlets like CNN, MSNBC, FOX, and the rest are, quite simply, complete and total bullshit. There is no wonder Americans are so tragically ignorant of what is happening in Syria and the rest of the world when the constant barrage of media propaganda they are subjected to does nothing but promote claims and statements that are in direct contradiction to the facts.

The itinerary of the trip involved seeing a number of cities – Damascus, Aleppo, Homs, Tartus – and many smaller towns and villages in between.

Upon arriving in Damascus, the first thing that stands out is not the architecture or the traffic or even the fact that life has almost fully returned to the areas liberated by the Syrian military, but the people themselves. Many Americans, constantly tortured by media propaganda telling them that everyone in every foreign country hates them for freedom, religion, and short shorts, might be surprised to know that many of the people are intelligent enough to separate the American people from the American government even if Americans are not always intelligent enough to extend the same courtesy to them.

Regardless of the propaganda peddled to Western audiences, the Syrian people mark as some of the most welcoming, friendly, human beings in the world. From the first moment of entering the country, we were greeted by Syrian soldiers who, at virtually every checkpoint, welcomed us to Syria and then on to Damascus where the Syrian people expressed their famous hospitality. Everywhere we went for the entirety of the visit, we were greeted “Welcome to Syria” by soldiers, strangers, passersby on the street, business owners, and virtually everyone we came in contact with. The welcomes were clearly genuine. Everyone was obviously pleased and felt strangely honored that foreigners were visiting Syria and many expressed happiness that “tourists” were returning to Syria after six years of war. It was a sign that things are slowly returning to normal.

While Americans may remain under the impression that Syrians are obsessed with religion, wary and hateful towards foreigners (particularly Americans due to all our alleged “freedom”), I can say without qualification that this is not true and that never once did I experience any hostility from any Syrian during my entire visit. In fact, we were shown the complete opposite with myself and others being repeatedly invited to homes for dinner, tea, and coffee following a short conversation.

While one may be quick to dismiss the content of this article as mere ramblings of a tourist, it is nonetheless important. After six years of bombing, funding terrorists, and hysterical propaganda on the screens of virtually every American, Americans know as little about Syria as they did in 2010. The average American views Syria and Syrian culture as something similar to Saudi Arabia where all the women are covered from head to toe with no rights whatsoever, where non-Muslims are persecuted, and where Islamic law dictates that such an unlucky soul who might be born there cannot even access alcohol to drown his sorrows.

The landscape of Syria to the average American is nothing but sand dunes as far as the eye can see – no water and no trees. Indeed, Hollywood and corporate media have done an excellent job at convincing middle America that these “normal” people are sand-dwelling savages from the Stone Age. This is no mistake since it is easier to hate and bomb savages than it is to murder human beings with families, jobs, and dreams of their own. American media has earned its money in this regard.

To dispel a few of these myths that should have been dispelled long ago it might be worth mentioning that the traditional depiction of the Middle East (covered women, savagery, and beheadings) is closer to the reality of America’s ally Saudi Arabia than anything in Syria. The country has deserts for sure but it also has mountains, lush green areas, coastal regions, and lakes. Women are able to drive, vote, hold public office and do virtually everything a man can do in Syria if they desire. Women are not covered. Instead, walking the streets of Damascus or any other major city, you will see plenty of uncovered women wearing tight jeans and tank tops. There are no religious police hunting them down, as the government is secular and enforces secularism in terms of law and policy. Religious freedom applies to Muslims, Jews, and Christians alike.

Bars are plentiful in the cities as are liquor stores and the general ability to be as drunk as one needs to be in order to feel like a Westerner is always present.

Religious fetishism plays harder in the minds of Americans themselves than it does in the life of the average Syrian. Muslim, Christian, Jew, and all the other branches of religion have coexisted peacefully for generations and continue to do so today. A walk on the street of any city will reveal this clear as day. No one in Syria is engaged in a religious civil war. Only in the minds of Westerners subjected to daily propaganda is the Syrian crisis related to religion and only on the teleprompters of CNN and MSNBC is the crisis a civil war.

All throughout Syria, even after six years of intense fighting and some of the most brutal atrocities the world has ever seen having been committed by America’s terrorists, the Syrian people are beginning to rebuild. Even in areas formerly controlled by America’s cave-dwelling proxies, life is returning to Syria. Shops are reopening. Homes are being rebuilt and services are being restored. This is a hallmark of Syrians which has helped see the country through; resilience in the face of unimaginable odds.

A walk in the Souk near the Aleppo citadel which, once teeming with life and shops is now reduced to rubble and pockmarked walls, revealed Syrians walking to their old shops with bags and a shovel to begin the process of digging through the dirt, rocks, and rubble and clear out their shop stalls for the eventual remodeling and reopening. Even in the midst of the constant sounds of shelling and bombing and under the hovering threat of suicide bombs, sleeper cell attacks, and counterattacks by America’s terrorists, restaurant owners and shopkeepers are back to work, carrying on with life in the aftermath and the fringe continuation of such incredible amounts of death.

Syrian Determination

It is almost impossible to put to words the determination that the Syrian people have shown in not only preserving their culture through possibly the darkest period of the country or in rebuilding their homes and businesses but also their defiant will to refuse to submit to the attempts by Western imperialists to destroy their country and their culture.

Syria is a special country and most Syrians are conscious of that. It is not an abstraction to the people who live there. Having dinner in a hotel restaurant in Damascus, we met a Syrian couple who expressed their own knowledge that Syria was a special country on every level and how they were themselves tied to that land in a way in which most people would have no understanding. Truly, the blood of the land runs in their veins.

We spoke to a group of art and theatre students and their teachers who remained in Damascus throughout the war. The girls were in their early twenties, having experienced the entirety of their teenage years in the throes of war. When they should have been learning to drive in the Damascus traffic, going on dates, and generally being teenagers, they were watching bombs drop on their city, seeing their friends and family members murdered, and struggling to get enough to eat day by day. Theirs is a youth wasted by America’s terrorists, teenage years that contain memories of the worst kind of atrocities with no room for teenage angst and resistance to the confines of schooling. Instead, bombs took the place of parties and teenage rebellion.

Despite all this, their outlook was surprisingly positive and incredibly life-affirming.

“For us,” said one of the girls, “life is about living. We are surrounded by death so, for us, living is enough.”

After the conversation, as we were leaving, one member of our group thanked the women for taking the time to invite us in and to speak with us about their lives and the tragedies they each had to endure on such a beautiful day. To that, a woman responded,

“Yes, but all days are beautiful. You only have to be able to recognize the beauty.”

That, in a nutshell, is the Syria I experienced over ten days.

Later on, in discussions with a Syrian man, the question was asked how Syrians seem to be able to get back up on their feet and start living again, sending their children to school, working, rebuilding even as the war continues two miles away. The answer was simple: “This is Syria.” When it was suggested that the Western powers do not understand the Syrian connection to their country and their unmatched resolve to continue living and rebuilding what was lost, he agreed. “That’s right,” he said. “They don’t understand us. And that is why they lost.”

Posted in SyriaComments (0)

Western Media Whitewashes Rebel Destruction of Damascus Water Supply


NOVANEWS
Image result for Western Media Whitewashes ISIS CARTOON
By Maram Susli 

Syria’s capital city Damascus continues to suffer without water. The water which supplied four million people, was cut off by insurgents who have occupied the aquifer in Wadi Barada since late December. The insurgents, which include an alliance of US backed groups and Al Qaeda’s Syria branch Jabhat Fateh Al Sham (formally Jabhat al Nusra), uploaded a video of themselves rigging the ancient Ein Al Fijeh spring with explosives. Two days before this upload, the rebels were also accused of tainting the water supply with diesel. As a result of the success of the Syrian military campaign to recapture parts of Wadi Barada, the insurgents were forced to agree to allowing engineers in to fix the aquifer as part of a ceasefire agreement. However after the agreement was reached the insurgents shot and killed the negotiating team overseeing repairs. Previously they had shot at technicians as they attempted to enter Wadi Barada.

Several groups which included the so called “White helmets” NGO released a written statement, that they will not allow engineers to fix the spring until the Syrian government agrees to give them certain concessions. The White Helmets have received tens of millions of dollars from various Western governments. Their signed statement shows that they are complicit with Al Qaeda in what the UN has stated is tantamount to a war crime.

Yet NATO backed media outlets have failed to explicitly state this, tip toeing around the subject of responsibility. Some outlets were even initially suggesting its was the Syrian government that was responsible. The most offending headlines included this one from the Daily Beast, “Assad’s Newest War Tactic: Dehydration”. The Qatar linked Middle East Eye, a newspaper run by a former Guardian and Al Jazeera journalists, headlined with “Water war: Wadi Barada and Assad’s latest weapon”. Australia’s ABC news suggested that, “this was not the first time the Syrian government targeted it’s own facilities”.

Perhaps the worst offender was the discredited Bellingcat website, run by Eliot Higgins, which claims to be independent open source analysis while consistently backing up US State Department propaganda. They released an article claiming that the Syrian government was responsible for the damage to the aquifer. Bellingcat did not touch on the fact that it is the insurgents who refuse to allow the aquifer to be fixed.

Evidence

There is also ample evidence that the insurgents were indeed behind the initial destruction of the spring. The insurgents uploaded a video of themselves on Facebook, rigging the ancient Ein el Fijeh spring with explosives. In the video a rebel is seen walking through the pipes saying, “this is one of the water pipes of Ein el Fijah spring, the revolutionaries are rigging it with explosives right now”. The video was accompanied by the following written statement.

“Let everyone know that the lives of the traitors in Damascus are not more precious than the life of a child from Wadi Barada. This is one of the tunnels that supply the occupied city of Damascus with water, it’s currently being boopy-trapped by the rebels, in the event that the mercenary commander Qaus Farwa continues his offensive on Wadi Barada, all the main tunnels will be detonated and will never be restored.” #Bombing_is_better_than_evacuation”

Rebels also made Facebook posts celebrating the destruction of the spring and taunting the people of Damascus. One rebel posted photographs of himself flashing victory signs over the rubble of the aquifer tunnels. One post reads,

“Hahaha just as like you wanted, your water has turned into diesel, and the bombing will happen tomorrow or the day after. The bombing is ready no matter what and after that let the flood come. We will burn the soul of each christian, shi’ites and those traitor sunnis who sold their religion and decided to side with you, you jew idiots. You want a ceasefire now just so you can pull your dead bodies out of our sacred soil? You can drink water from my d**k you pigs.”  

Seemingly in coordination with the US backed rebels, ISIS cut off the water supply to Aleppo a few days later, suggesting that the water crisis was a planned reprisal for the liberation of Aleppo. This would not be the first time that insurgents cut off water to Aleppo, Syria’s second capital. In 2014, the insurgents filmed themselves celebrating the destruction of Aleppo’s water supply. The population of Aleppo was without water for over a year.

Motive

Furthermore, the insurgents have motive to cut off the water supply while the Syrian government doesn’t. The recent liberation of Aleppo city, involved the evacuation of insurgents to the city of Idlib in green buses, part of the terms of their surrender. The Syrian military was approaching Wadi Barada with the same terms of evacuation on the table.The rebels from the area have cut water supplies to Damascus several times in the past as a bargaining chip to prevent the Syrian army from entering the area and pushing them out. This was likely what caused the insurgents to use the water again as leverage, and escalate by not only stopping the water flow as they have done previously, but destroying it entirely. This is reflected in the Facebook posts made by rebels, that “bombing [the aquifer] is better than evacuation”. The people in Wadi Barada do not get their water from Ein el fijah spring, but from sources further upstream, hence the rebels would not be damaging their own water supply by poisoning and bombing the spring.

On the other hand there is no motive for the Syrian government to cut off water to Damascus, a city which they hold and reside within. It was the government who demanded to get engineers in to fix the aquifer, and in the meantime initiated a program of rationing and distributing water. Bellingcat’s author Nick Waters was wise to this and did not attempt to invent a motive. Instead he claimed that the Syrian government had destroyed the aquifer by accident, coincidentally at the same time that the insurgents were rigging it with explosives. The claim that the attack could have been  an ‘accident’ is contradicted by the United Nations, which said the “infrastructure was deliberately targeted.”

Bellingcat’s Whitewash Attempt

The Bellingcat article was written by Nick Waters a former British military officer. This brings up the question of whether he is still biased towards serving Britain’s interests versus objective fact. Britain has been calling for regime change in Syria since 2011. Waters’ article is riddled with logical fallacies and non-sequitur conclusions.

Waters asks us to accept that a Syrian airstrike on the militants holding Ein El Fijah spring, resulted in diesel leaking into the water supply, claiming that it “probably” must have “damaged a fuel tank, generator or otherwise”. However he provides no evidence that this occurred, or an explanation as to what a fuel tank would be doing near the aquifer. He states that the same rebels who showed the tunnel being prepared for demolition were the ones who blamed the water crisis on the Syrian government. He asks us to accept their word on the latter but not the former. To Waters, the credibility of Al Qaeda-linked militants is not damaged by the fact they intended to destroy Damascus’s water supply. Water’s says “using media freely available on Twitter, Facebook and Youtube, it is clear that the structure that covers the spring was significantly damaged on or after the 23rd December”. However the source he used showing the damage to the spring was from the 26th and 27th of December. Embarrassingly, Waters referred to Wadi Barada as “Barada Wadi” multiple times showing a complete lack of understanding about the very place he is attempting to write about. In another example of Waters’ profound ignorance, he also referred to one of the rebels posting on Facebook as “Abu”, however Abu is not a name, but a designation meaning ‘father of.’

Conclusion

Bellingcat and its founder Elliot Higgins are committed to building narratives in support the US State Department’s agenda. In the past, Bellingcat attempted to pin the blame on the crash of Malaysia MH17 on Russia. Bellingcat also produced shaky analysis claiming to have smoking gun evidence that the Syrian government was responsible for the chemical weapons attack in Ghouta. The article that was jointly written by Dan Kaszeta and Eliot Higgins, was contradicted by well known Physics Professor and rocket engineer Theodore Postol who also stated that Dan Kaszeta was a fraud. Dan Kazseta claimed to be a chemical weapons expert but in fact had no education in chemistry. Bellingcat’s article on the water crisis in Damascus will stand as further testament to the unreliability, even intentionally deceptive nature of its reporting.

The United Nations has stated that the cutting off of Damascus’s water could constitute a war crime. One awaits similar UN statements to be made about Aleppo where there is no shadow of doubt that the US backed rebels cut off the water supply in 2014. The UN’s statement could mean that the Al Qaeda linked White Helmets NGO could be implicated in war crimes. This raises the stakes for NATO governments who have provided them with tens of millions of dollars in donations. It is no wonder that a campaign of disinformation is being run to deflect blame and whitewash the incident.

Posted in USA, Europe, SyriaComments Off on Western Media Whitewashes Rebel Destruction of Damascus Water Supply


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