Stephen Lendman

More About: WAR: About that War

Washington Admits Aiding Syrian Opposition

Washington Admits Aiding Syrian Opposition

On March 25, The New York Times headlined, "US and Turkey to Step Up 'Nonlethal' Aid to Rebels in Turkey," saying:

Other US allies were urged to do the same. Insisting no weapons will be sent belies heavy Western and Israeli ones delivered through porous borders for months.

They include powerful explosives, small arms, submachine guns, machine guns, sniper rifles, rocket and anti-tank grenade launchers, among others. They've been used to kill civilians and security forces, as well as destroy government facilities.

Russia repeatedly denounces Washington's one-sided support while claiming peaceful resolution intentions. Obama says aiding Assad's opposition furthers transitioning to a "legitimate government."

In other words, he wants independent Syria replaced by a client state America controls. Then on to the next target for the same purpose - Iran.

If Washington had a motto it would be: We're boss, and what we say goes! Russia and growing numbers of other nations respond Nyet!

Syrians want no outside interference. International law backs them. They assert sole right to decide how their nation's governed. Most support Assad. Washington recruited and backs Syrian National Council (SNC) and Free Syrian Army (FSA) belligerents. They function lawlessly as Western proxies.

Most Syrians oppose them. They want peace, not violence. They know Washington pulls their strings. Its Special Forces and CIA operatives aid them covertly on the ground. So-called "non-lethal" aid includes "strategic communication" equipment.

White House spokesman Ben Rhodes says it's "important to the opposition as they're formulating their vision of an inclusive and democratic Syria to have the ability to communicate."

It's not about saying hello to mom. It's for coordinating attacks, as well as communicating with neighboring forces in Turkey, regional countries, and Western ones. It and other aid subvert peace efforts.

That's the whole idea. Washington won't tolerate it. Violence facilitates regime change. Peace assures continuity. Kofi Annan fronts for power. His mission excludes even-handedness. His disingenuous rhetoric hides it.

He largely pressures Assad. On Monday, he met with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Moscow. Ahead of the meeting, Russia's strong statement said:

"(O)ur essential approach is to ensure a ceasefire and end to violence in Syria, which will be difficult to implement without putting an end to external armed and political support of the opposition."

"Taking into account that the Syrian authorities are ready to establish such a dialogue, the key task is to convince the Syrian opposition to sit down at the negotiation table with the authorities and reach a peaceful resolution of the crisis."

On Friday, a UN Human Rights Council (HRC) statement again censured Assad. It spuriously accused him of "sharply escalating" violence. Moscow and Beijing denounced the comments. A Russian Foreign Ministry statement said:

"The document gives a unilateral assessment to the events in the country and accuses only the Syrian government of violence. It does not contain any requirements towards armed groups of the opposition. The document also ignores international efforts aimed at settling the crisis, in particular the mission by U.N./Las (League of Arab States) Special Representative Kofi Annan."

"The UNHRC biased and inadequate resolution runs counter the efforts taken by the international community to stabilise the situation in Syria. The document 'is discordant' with the recent U.N. Security Council statements that support Kofi Annan's mission and condemns the terrorist acts in Damascus and Aleppo."

"Moreover, the irresponsible position taken by several states, which came against Russia's proposal to condemn the terrorist acts in Syria that led to the losses of lives, and violence by armed militants encourage impunity of terrorists."

The Russian Federation "continues to insist on stopping violence in Syria by ceasing fire by all parties and start a nationwide political dialogue without foreign interference. We will persistently comply with this policy."

As long as killer gang attacks continue, Assad's obligated to fight fire with fire. Holding back facilitates insurgent killings, weakens his own grip on power, and leaves his people helpless in the face of Western-backed aggression.

Annan's its willing agent. He's replicating his Secretary-General role. He was little more than an imperial tool. He never achieved or worked for peace anywhere. He's not doing it now. His message to Assad is that "the transformational winds blowing today cannot be easily resisted, or cannot be resisted for long."

"The only way to deal with this is through reform, through change - and change that respects democratic principles, individual dignity, the rule of law and human rights."

His decade long UN tenure showed contempt for the above principles. His words now ring hollow. While feigning even-handedness, he largely criticizes Assad.

Russia insists that halting violence depends on both sides cooperating and ending foreign interference. President Dmitri Medvedev and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov especially oppose Western and neighboring states supplying weapons to insurgents. Annan avoided the subject.

Syria's Ministry of Foreign Affairs also denounces belligerent outside interference. Over the weekend, multiple insurgent attacks killed hundreds and injured many more. Killer gangs spurn peace. So do Washington, rogue NATO partners, and complicit Arab states.

On March 26, Today's Zaman headlined, "Turkey presses Syrian opposition to unite, produce 'national pact,' " saying:

Turkey and Qatar want unity ahead of an April 1 and 2 international meeting.

An unnamed Turkish official called it "by far the most significant meeting as far as the Syrian opposition is concerned."

Presenting a united front offers a "political vision for the future of" Syria. Around 200 representatives from different ethnic, sectarian, religious, and political groups began meeting in Istanbul to try to find consensus.

Only the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) was left out because of its ties to the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). Turkey calls it a terrorist group for wanting an independent Kurdistan.

Ankara closed its Damascus embassy. It believes Assad's days are numbered and thinks Syrians will oust him. However, "doubts of the Syrian opposition to act as a united front lead to concerns over" protracted conflict.

Deep rifts between opposition sides favoring violent and peaceful approaches leave resolution far apart. Whether discussions now can heal breaches remains to be seen. Previous attempts went nowhere.

Washington's one goal involves establishing another client state by any means, including war. Expect it. Then on to the next target - Iran.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at

Also visit his blog site at and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

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