Wai on Syiia

:
6otewoy to WWlll
Tony Cortolucci
Nile Bowie
2012
2
War on Syria:
6otewoy to WWlll
Copyiight Tony Caitalucci & Nile Bowie 2u12
All iights ieseiveu
Novembei 2u12
Table of Contents
Autbor's Note ........................................................................................................................... 5
Cbapter 1: Tbe Arcbitecture of Insurgency .................................................................... ó
Cbapter 2:
Perception Management and Psycbological Warfare................................................15
Cbapter 3: Tbe Prospect of Regional War .................................................................... 21
Conclusion.............................................................................................................................. 30
Autbor's Note
Thank you foi ieauing "Wor on Syrio: 6otewoy to WWlll." Youi inteiest anu
attention is highly appieciateu by the authois of this book. The puipose of this
uocument is to pioviue an accuiate histoiical iecoiu of the conflict in Syiia. This was
a challenging task, namely because I was appioacheu to cieate this pioject while the
conflict was still ongoing. The inuiviuuals involveu in this pioject founu it necessaiy
to compile oui vaiious aiticles anu conclusions into one uefinitive piouuct anu,
because the fighting in Syiia has not ceaseu, it is necessaiy to piouuce expanueu
euitions in the futuie.
This book is baseu on the aiticles anu ieseaich of Tony Caitalucci, an inuepenuent
jouinalist anu euitoi of lonJ Bestroyer Report baseu in Bangkok, Thailanu. Ny iole in
this book was to expanu these aiticles anu compile them into a coheient naiiative, a
uifficult task foi any wiitei. Inevitably, much of my ieseaich appeais within these
pages to give ieaueis the most in-uepth, foimulateu, anu ciitical account of events in
Syiia we can offei. Aftei compiling the chapteis, Eiic Biaitsei, a New Yoik City-baseu
jouinalist anu euitoi of Stoplmperiolism.com, contiibuteu by euiting anu
pioofieauing the text. I woikeu foi thiee months out of my apaitment in Kuala
Lumpui, Nalaysia to piouuce this uocument.
The authois of this book hope that this pioject encouiages otheis to foige ties
with like-minueu people fiom aiounu the woilu, anu constiuctively collaboiate to
biing attention to compelling issues anu injustices. This book isn't exactly beusiue
ieauing, but it inevitably contains veiy impoitant analysis anu infoimation that
neeus to be moie bioauly exposeu. It is wiitten in such a way that may initially
confuse ieaueis who aie unfamiliai with the names, locations, anu events we cite.
0ui best effoits have been maue to make this infoimation as accessible anu well
uefineu as possible.
0pponents anu ciitics of this infoimation will uismiss oui ieseaich anu
conclusions, anu familiaily bianu us "conspiiacy theoiists" oi apologists of the
Syiian goveinment. The makeis of this book uo not enuoise any political paity oi
oiganization, noi uo we ieceive funuing foi this woik fiom anyone. These
conclusions aie oui own, anu ultimately, we believe in the piimacy of national
soveieignty, iespect foi inteinational law, anu the iight of the Syiian people to ueciue
theii own political futuie without such a futuie being imposeu on them.
0nce again, thank you foi ieauing this book anu we hope this infoimation
impioves youi unueistanuing of the situation. This woik is ueuicateu to those
innocents who suffeieu untimely ueaths in Syiia anu elsewheie.
Nile Bowie
Auqust 24, 2012
Cbapter 1: Tbe Arcbitecture of Insurgency
"Tbere is onotber type of worfore÷new in its intensity, oncient in its oriqin÷wor
by querrillos, subversives, insurqents, ossossins; wor by ombusb insteoJ of by combot,
by infiltrotion insteoJ of oqqression, seekinq victory by eroJinq onJ exboustinq tbe
enemy insteoJ of enqoqinq bim. lt preys on unrest."
)obn F. Kennedy
SStb PresiJent of tbe 0niteJ Stotes
Seveial months of political tuimoil in Tunisia tiiggeieu the seiies of events
iefeiieu to as the "Aiab Spiing," which then engulfeu seveial countiies in Noith
Afiica. Among those who took to the stieets intenuing to peacefully uemonstiate,
weie local uissiuents that ieceiveu tiaining, funuing anu mateiial assistance fiom
foieign poweis thiough oiganizations funueu laigely by the 0S State Bepaitment. As
these movements gaineieu the attention of the inteinational meuia, unveiifieu
iepoits of excessive goveinment violence weie useu to tainish the image of national
goveinments in the iegion. Neuia enteipiises such as Al-}ozeero anu I0X News uiu
theii pait to conuition public opinion in an effoit to builu suppoit foi Westein-
sanctioneu opposition gioups. Bissiuent foices woulu latei openly ieceive aims anu
mateiial assistance fiom abioau, in oiuei to wage insuiiectionaiy gueiilla waifaie
against the goveining authoiities of those countiies.
0ne of the oiganizations involveu in ieciuiting, tiaining, anu suppoiting youth
activists aheau of the "Aiab Spiing" was uesciibeu in an Apiil 2u11 New York Times
aiticle.
1
The oiganization, Novements.oig, oi Alliance of Youth Novements, woulu
latei be uesciibeu aumitting to 0S funuing anu involvement in the "Aiab Spiing"
upiisings. The aiticle implicates Fieeuom Bouse, the National Enuowment foi
Bemociacy, anu two of its satellite oiganizations, the Inteinational Republican
Institute, anu the National Bemociatic Institute, in ieciuiting, tiaining, anu
suppoiting the uniest staiting as eaily as 2uu8. While the New York Times aiticle
uoesn't mention the oiganization by name, it links to an official 0S State Bepaitment
announcement titleu, "Announcement on Alliance of Youth Novements Summit," that
most ceitainly uoes.
2
The Alliance of Youth Novements is a coipoiate-sponsoieu
"coup college" of soits, tiaining activists to subveit anu topple goveinments on the
0S State Bepaitment's behalf.
0n Febiuaiy 26th, 2u11, the 0S-baseu Biookings Institution issueu a iepoit titleu,
"Libya's Test of the New Inteinational 0iuei," which aigueu in favoi of inteivention
in Libya, uesciibing the unueitaking as "a test that the inteinational community has
to pass." Failuie to uo so woulu, in the woius of Biookings Boha Centei Biiectoi
Salman Shaikh, "shake fuithei the faith of the people's iegion in the emeiging
inteinational oiuei anu the piimacy of inteinational law." Succeeuing woulu, as the
1 0.S. uioups Belpeu Nuituie Aiab 0piisings, The New Yoik Times, Apiil 14, 2u11
2 Announcement on Alliance of Youth Novements Summit, Ameiica.uov Aichive, Novembei 2u,
2uu8
iepoit states, "uemonstiably uiaw a line in the sanu to uetei othei Aiab autociats
who iesoit to attacking theii people iathei than uialogue anu genuine iefoims." By
iefoims, Biookings is iefeiiing to Libya's integiation into the "inteinational system,"
wheie piotectionist economic policies woulu be pusheu asiue to allow foieign
goveinments anu multinational coipoiations to usuip the countiies' soveieignty anu
vast natuial iesouices.
S

The goveinment of Nuammai uauuafi hau been accuseu of using taigeteu
aiistiikes against gatheiings of unaimeu uemonstiatois, as citeu by a concentiateu
stieam of unveiifieu activist testimony, alleging the peipetiation of state-sponsoieu
ciimes against humanity. In late Naich 2u11, following the passage of 0N Resolution
197S which manuateu the enfoicement of a no-fly-zone ovei Libya, NAT0 launcheu a
bombing campaign in suppoit of Libya's aimeu iebels, unuei the auspices of
"piotecting civilians." Foimei Fiench Piesiuent Nicholas Saikozy woulu echo
Biookings' sentiments, stating:
Fvery ruler sboulJ unJerstonJ, onJ especiolly every Arob ruler sboulJ unJerstonJ
tbot tbe reoction of tbe internotionol community onJ of Furope will from tbis moment
on eocb time be tbe some: we will be on tbe siJe of peoceful protesters wbo must not be
represseJ witb violence.
4
The 0niteu Nations passeu Resolution 197S amiu the fiist iepoits of
insuiiectionaiy violence in the southein Syiian city of Baiaa. While the mainstieam
meuia poitiayeu aimeu iebels instigating violence against Syiian secuiity foices as
"peaceful piotestois," 0S Senatoi }oe Liebeiman woulu thieaten Syiia with foieign
militaiy inteivention. In Baiaa, piotesteis toicheu the Ba'ath Paity heauquaiteis anu
uestioyeu cais paikeu along the stieet, while two piotesteis weie iepoiteuly killeu
as they attempteu to set ablaze anothei goveinment builuing in the city of Latakia. It
is uifficult to unueistanu how any iesponsible goveinment shoulu be expecteu to
allow foieign-funueu mobs to commit wiuespieau aison anu vanualism with the
expiesseu goal of iemoving the stanuing goveinment fiom powei. 0nuoubteuly, the
violence exhibiteu by the piotesteis was uesigneu to intentionally piovoke Syiian
secuiity foices attempting to maintain oiuei.
Bowevei excessively oi appiopiiately the Syiian secuiity foices ieacteu to the
violence, the mainstieam meuia anu Westein politicians attempteu to leveiage
legitimacy away fiom Bamascus, citing the violence as the justification foi Piesiuent
Bashai al-Assau to step asiue. Bistuibingly, the continueu peipetuation of violence
anu uisoiuei has been attiibuteu to hiieu piovocateuis, which aie often employeu to
kill piotesteis anu secuiity foices alike, cieating an inteinationally sensationalizeu
blooubath, uesigneu to escalate both the piotests anu inteinational piessuie on the
state. An aiticle publisheu by The SyJney Horninq EerolJ entitleu, "Blooubath New
Thieat to Assau" stateu that the instability in southein Syiia has left the iegime
"staggeiing." Auuitionally, it inviteu "stein" ciiticism fiom 0S Piesiuent Baiack
0bama stating:
S Libya's Test of the New Inteinational 0iuei, Biookings Institution, Febiuaiy 26, 2u11
4 Saikozy wains Aiab iuleis about Libya pieceuent, Eu0bseivei, Naich 2S, 2u11
lnsteoJ of listeninq to tbeir own people, PresiJent AssoJ is blominq outsiJers wbile
seekinq lronion ossistonce in repressinq Syrio´s citizens tbrouqb tbe some brutol toctics
tbot bove been useJ by bis lronion ollies.
S

While the Syiian goveinment initially cieuiteu "aimeu gioups" anu iooftop
snipeis with committing acts of violence against piotestois anu secuiity foices,
iepoits by outlets such as Al-}ozeero ielieu solely on anonymous accounts of the
opposition, who have continueu to push the official naiiative of an unpiovokeu
goveinment ciackuown on Syiia's civilian population. Al-}ozeero's aiticle, "'Nine
killeu' at Syiia funeial piocessions," incluueu testimony fiom one of theii
coiiesponuents on the giounu who stateu:
[People morcbinq on on overposs] were met witb o boil of qunfire, mony people
certoinly wounJeJ Jirectly in front of us, cors turneJ orounJ, onJ l con tell you it wos
on increJibly cbootic scene, onJ it seems os tbouqb pretty mucb everyone Jown bere in
tbe soutbern port of tbe country is now corryinq weopons. lt is uncleor wbo wos firinq
ot wbom, tbot´s port of tbe confusion ... but cleorly o very violent inciJent now beinq
corrieJ out bere in tbe soutb of tbe country.
6
Though ciyptic, this uesciiption seemeu to coiioboiate the Syiian goveinment's
asseition that they weien't the only ones with guns. As iepoits of mysteiy gunmen
anu iooftop snipeis continueu to emeige, events that unfolueu halfway aiounu the
woilu in Thailanu shaieu iuentical patteins with the state-sponsoieu uestabilization
being unueitaken in southein Syiia.
0n Apiil 1uth, 2u1u, the Thai militaiy attempteu to uispeise ieu-shiiteu
suppoiteis of billionaiie telecommunications tycoon anu exileu political leauei
Thaksin Shinawatia at Bangkok's "Bemociacy Nonument". The militaiy employeu
the use of watei cannons anu iubbei bullets when a gioup of unknown gunmen
inteiveneu with a combination of gienaue attacks anu snipei fiie that killeu the Thai
militaiy's Colonel Romklao anu six othei soluieis. Tioops immeuiately fell back in
uisaiiay, while piotesteis weie uiviueu in confusion anu auulation. The mysteiy
gunmen weaveu thiough the piotesteis fiiing spoiauically at Thai tioops who
ietuineu fiie. In total, 2S uieu. While the piotesteis weie entiiely unawaie of the
gambit, it is unlikely that even the secuiity guaius knew of the impenuing attack, as
many immeuiately iusheu in to piotect fallen soluieis fiom aggiessive piotesteis,
while gun battles continueu elsewheie.
It was quite cleai that a highly tiaineu, well piepaieu thiiu paity was involveu,
anu unlike in Syiia wheie few foieigneis ventuie anu fewei cameias seem to be
senuing back footage, both foieign anu uomestic, amateui anu piofessional footage
caught the melee on tape. Initial blanket uenials by piotest leaueis quickly became
piecemeal confessions as footage of these "men in black" filteieu out. Inteinational
spokesman foi the piotesteis, Sean Boonpiacong, tolu Reuters that elements of the
aimy weie with theii movement, incluuing the black-clau mysteiy gunmen that took
S Blooubath New Thieat to Assau, The Syuney Noining Beialu, Apiil 2S, 2u11
6 'Nine killeu' at Syiia funeial piocessions, Al-}azeeia, Apiil 2S, 2u11
pait in the Apiil 1uth blooubath.
7
Be stateu, "They aie a seciet unit within the aimy
that uisagiees with what's going on. Without them, the black-clau men, theie woulu
have been a whole lot moie ueaths anu injuiies." The suspecteu leauei of these
gunmen, ienegaue geneial Khattiya Sawasuipol, known as "Seh Baeng," fuithei
uamneu eailiei uenials by aumitting to commanuing Suu aimeu men tiaineu foi
''close encounteis,'' aimeu with N79 gienaue launcheis, befoie withuiawing his
comment in latei inteiviews.
8
Fiom Apiil 1uth, until the wiuespieau aison that maikeu the enu of the piotests
on Nay 19th, uaily anu nightly gun battles, gienaue attacks, anu snipei fiie woulu
claim the lives of 91 people. This incluueu 9 soluieis anu police, a woman killeu by an
N79 gienaue attack, anu at least one piotestei who uieu of smoke inhalation while
looting a builuing lit by fellow piotesteis. The iemaining 8u ueaths incluueu
jouinalists, bystanueis, meuical woikeis, anu piotesteis caught in the ciossfiie. To
explain why such a blooubath was necessaiy, Sean Boonpiacong, aftei aumitting the
mysteiy gunmen weie woiking on his movement's behalf, gave anothei bieathtaking
confession in an Apiil 24th inteiview. When askeu why piotest leaueis hau tuineu
uown a goveinment offei to holu fiesh elections in 9 months, he iesponueu by saying
that, aftei the Apiil 1uth inciuent, they felt Thai Piime Ninistei Abhisit vejjajiva's
hanus weie "tainteu with bloou" anu that it woulu be best if the Thai Pailiament was
uissolveu. Be continueu by stating the piotest's uemanus hau changeu to immeuiate
uissolution as well as Piime Ninistei Abhisit's leaving the countiy.
Tiagic events in Thailanu pioviue a viviu example - complete with biazen
aumissions - of how "mysteiy gunmen" foi hiie weie useu to foment giotesque
spectacles useu to uistoit iealities in favoi of opposition gioups suppoiteu fiom
abioau. Theii violence seives two puiposes, to cieate enough chaos anu bloousheu
to foice a goveinment to step uown, oi to justify escalating angei anu violence
amongst the unsuspecting iegulai iank anu file piotesteis. In the Syiian context,
iepoits of mysteiy gunmen anu "ueath squaus" escalateu the situation uiamatically,
at the expense of thousanus of civilian causalities. Repoits issueu by Iian's Al-Alom
Aiabic Language News Netwoik uesciibeu how snipeis linkeu to Sauui Aiabia anu
the Ameiican CIA weie opeiating in Syiia to puiposefully assassinate piotesteis in
oiuei to expanu uniest. The iepoits uesciibe a motoicycle uiivei ueliveiing a snipei
to a builuing befoie speeuing off. 0nce in position, the snipei fiies on piotesteis.
Syiian secuiity foices suiiounu the builuing anu a shootout allegeuly takes place.
The text concluues stating that the snipei is injuieu anu taken to a hospital.
Al-Alom's iepoit anu footage woulu coiioboiate both goveinment anu eyewitness
accounts citeu by inteinational meuia, stating that "snipeis on iooftops" weie
shooting at piotesteis. While "iights activists" assume the snipeis aie secuiity foices,
the goveinment maintains that gunmen have openeu fiie on piotesteis anu secuiity
foices alike. A CNN iepoit fiom Apiil 2u11 citeu a Syiian official who stateu that, "an
unknown 'aimeu gioup on iooftops shot at piotesteis anu secuiity foices."
9
Activists
7 Reu means stop, anu angei, in vibiant Thai piotest, Reuteis, Apiil 2u1u
8 'Reu Commanuei' saw himself as Thai William Wallace, The Age, Nay 19, 2u1u
9 Repoits of funeial, police shootings iaise tensions in Syiia, CNN, Apiil uS, 2u11
saiu they believe the people on the iooftops weie snipeis fiom secuiity foices but
have put foith no eviuence beyonu "witness accounts." China's XinbuoNet iepoiteu
multiple inciuents acioss Syiia wheie aimeu gangs hau clasheu with secuiity foices
killing membeis on both siues. 0ne attack claimeu the lives of 8 bystanueis. 0fficial
state meuia in Syiia piesenteu eviuence that gioups hau been caught with non-
Syiian SIN caius in theii phones along with equipment useu to stage acts of
violence.
1u
An Apiil 2u11 0p-Eu ieleaseu by the Biookings Institution titleu, "In Syiia, Assau
Nust Exit the Stage," uesciibes how the cycle of violence initiateu by "mysteiious
gunmen" taigeting funeials is citeu as the line Assau hau ciosseu - which now
iequiies his uepaituie fiom powei. The aiticle states:
Witb tbe cycle of ever-increosinq protests met by reqime violence onJ tben more
funerols intensifyinq in oll oreos of tbe country, it is time for AssoJ, tbe ´Eomlet´ of tbe
Arob worlJ, to consiJer bis future. lt is time for bim onJ tbose wbo influence bim
obrooJ to seorcb for o swift onJ orJerly exit.
11
By late Apiil, NAT0 continueu to enfoice a no-fly zone ovei Libya while
conuucting aii stiikes in suppoit of the militant opposition. As was the case with
Bosni Nubaiak anu Nuammai uauuafi befoie him, 0S Senatois }ohn NcCain, Linusey
uiaham, anu }oe Liebeiman issueu a joint statement ueclaiing that that Bashai al-
Assau hau "lost the legitimacy to iemain in powei in Syiia." They continueu by
stating:
Rotber tbon beJqinq our bets or mokinq excuses for tbe AssoJ reqime, it is time for
tbe 0niteJ Stotes, toqetber witb our ollies in Furope onJ orounJ tbe worlJ, to oliqn
ourselves unequivocolly witb tbe Syrion people in tbeir peoceful JemonJ for o
Jemocrotic qovernment.
12
The 0S Senatois' statements iemain unequivocally uishonest, as NcCain anu
uiaham aie both membeis of the Inteinational Republican Institute, an oiganization
openly implicateu by the New York Times in funuing opposition gioups who took pait
in the "Aiab Spiing." Likewise, Liebeiman is a membei of the Neo-Conseivative
lobbying fiim ueceptively nameu the "Founuation foi Befense of Bemociacies
(FBB)," which featuies a host of Pioject foi a New Ameiican Centuiy (PNAC)
signatoiies incluuing William Kiistol, Richaiu Peile, }ames Woolsey, anu Paula
Bobiiansky, as well as Council on Foieign Relations membeis, Newt uingiich anu
Chailes Kiauthammei. While membeis of the Ameiican political establishment
ieauily uenounce foieign goveinments foi theii geneial non-acquiescence, the
substantial suppoit given to political opposition gioups has woikeu to foment civil
uniest anu enflame uomestic tensions in taiget nations aiounu the woilu.
1u Nobile Phones 0sing non-Syiian SIN Caius, SANA News Agency, Apiil 2S, 2u11
11 In Syiia, Assau Nust Exit the Stage, Biookings Institution, Apiil 27, 2u11
12 0bama 0nuei Piessuie to Call foi Syiian Leauei's 0ustei, F0X News, Apiil 29, 2u11
Washington hau seemingly ieacheu a consensus iegaiuing the neeu foi iegime
change in Syiia anu, by 2u11, it became cleai that they weie willing to employ theii
long-stanuing connections to Islamist netwoiks such as the Nuslim Biotheihoou, to
bolstei opposition foices anu leveiage contiol away fiom Bamascus. The Wosbinqton
Post iepoits that, since 2uuS, both the Bush anu 0bama auministiations contiibuteu
funuing to Syiian opposition gioups affiliateu with the Nuslim Biotheihoou. The
aiticle cites how the campaign to pioviue suppoit to anti-goveinment gioups in
Syiia tianscenueu two piesiuential auministiations:
Tbe 0.S. money for Syrion opposition fiqures beqon flowinq unJer PresiJent 6eorqe
W. Busb ofter be effectively froze politicol ties witb Bomoscus in 200S. Tbe finonciol
bockinq bos continueJ unJer PresiJent 0bomo, even os bis oJministrotion souqbt to
rebuilJ relotions witb AssoJ. Syrion outborities "woulJ unJoubteJly view ony 0.S. funJs
qoinq to illeqol politicol qroups os tontomount to supportinq reqime cbonqe," reoJ on
April 2009 coble siqneJ by tbe top-ronkinq 0.S. Jiplomot in Bomoscus ot tbe time. "A
reossessment of current 0.S.-sponsoreJ proqromminq tbot supports onti-[qovernment]
foctions, botb insiJe onJ outsiJe Syrio, moy prove proJuctive," tbe coble soiJ.
FJqor vosquez, o Stote Beportment spokesmon, soiJ tbe HiJJle Fost Portnersbip
lnitiotive bos ollocoteJ $7.S million for Syrion proqroms since 200S. A coble from tbe
embossy in Bomoscus, bowever, peqqeJ o mucb biqber totol ÷ obout $12 million ÷
between 200S onJ 2010. Tbe cobles report persistent feors omonq 0.S. Jiplomots tbot
Syrion stote security oqents boJ uncovereJ tbe money troil from Wosbinqton.
1S
In 2uu2, then 0S 0nuei Secietaiy of State }ohn Bolton, woulu auu Syiia to the
giowing "Axis of Evil." It woulu be latei ievealeu that Bolton's thieats against Syiia
woulu manifest themselves as coveit funuing anu suppoit foi opposition gioups
insiue of Syiia. In an Apiil 2u11 AIP iepoit , Nichael Posnei, the Assistant 0S
Secietaiy of State foi Bemociacy, Buman Rights anu Laboi, stateu that the "0S
goveinment has buugeteu $Su million in the last two yeais to uevelop new
technologies to help activists piotect themselves fiom aiiest anu piosecution by
authoiitaiian goveinments." The iepoit went on to explain that the 0S "oiganizeu
tiaining sessions foi S,uuu activists in uiffeient paits of the woilu. A session helu in
the Niuule East about six weeks ago gatheieu activists fiom Tunisia, Egypt, Syiia anu
Lebanon who ietuineu to theii countiies with the aim of tiaining theii colleagues
theie." Posnei woulu auu, "They went back anu theie's a iipple effect." That iipple
effect, of couise, uesciibes the couise of events that leu to Syiia's inteinal political
ciisis escalating into an anaichic sectaiian wai.
14
Yeais of coveit suppoit to Syiian opposition gioups fiom the 0S State Bepaitment
iemains significant, especially consiueiing that iecipients weie iepoiteuly affiliateu
with the Syiian Nuslim Biotheihoou, a gioup that has histoiically attempteu
multiple upiisings since the 196u's anu long conuemneu Syiia's minoiity Alawi-Shia
gioups as heietics. 6lobol Post's aiticle titleu, "Fiee Syiian Aimy plagueu by uivision,"
confiims that segments of the militants battling Syiian secuiity foices aie being
1S 0.S. secietly backeu Syiian opposition gioups, cables ieleaseu by WikiLeaks show, The
Washington Post, Apiil 18, 2u11
14 0S tiains activists to evaue secuiity foices, AFP, Apiil 8, 2u11
uiawn fiom the Biotheihoous' ianks. The Nuslim Biotheihoou is an oiganization
almost as omnipiesent as NI6 oi the CIA anu coinciuentally is woiking in tanuem
with othei 0S-funueu "youth activists" acioss the iegion.
1S

The Nuslim Biotheihoou's histoiy in Syiia goes back uecaues. Accoiuing to a
Bianueis 0niveisity publication titleu, "The Syiian Nuslim Biotheihoou anu the
Asau Regime," in 1979 the Biotheihoou, also calleu the "Ikhwan," attackeu anu
massacieu S2 Syiian militaiy cauets. This was pait of a laigei campaign of violence
conuucteu by the Biotheihoou that also incluueu assassination attempts against the
Syiian piesiuent. The escalating campaign of violence was the piimaiy impetus foi
theii coineiing anu uestiuction at the hanus of the Syiian militaiy in the city of
Bamah in 1982. Aftei theii uefeat, many membeis fleu Syiia anu establisheu
opeiations in Lonuon.
16

While coipoiate meuia outlets anu goveinment piess ieleases accuseu the Syiian
goveinment of killing civilians, uomestic Syiian piess iepoiteu the piesence of
aimeu teiioiist gioups, bianuishing up-to-uate Ameiican anu Isiaeli weapons,
ioaming the Bamascene countiysiue committing blinu acts of teiioi by setting off
explosive uevices anu kiunapping civilians. The oiiginal Aiab League 0bseivei
Nission to Syiia iepoit conuucteu fiom Becembei 24th, 2u11 to }anuaiy 18th, 2u12
confiims the allegations of Syiian state meuia.
17
The contents of the iepoit weie
laigely oveilookeu by the mainstieam meuia aftei Qatai uisputeu its finuings, the
only nation to uo so in the Aiab League's Ninisteiial Committee. The iepoit
unwaveiingly concluueu that the Syiian goveinment was not conuucting a campaign
of iepiession against peaceful piotestois. Fuitheimoie, the iepoit cieuits aimeu
gangs with the bombing of civilian buses, tiains caiiying uiesel oil, police buses, anu
the bombing of biiuges anu pipelines. Buiing an inteiview with Aiab League
obseivei Ahmeu Nanaï, he conuemns the Aiab League foi its failuie to acknowleuge
the obseiveis' finuings, stating:
Tbe Arob leoque is entirely JiscreJiteJ by buryinq tbe report of its own observers´
mission onJ its oppeol to tbe Security Council. lt misseJ tbe opportunity to porticipote
in tbe settlement of tbe Syrion offoir. All it con offer in tbe future will be wortbless.
18
Since late Apiil 2u11, the Syiian goveinment began fiequently issuing iepoits of
mysteiious gunmen who weie opening fiie on piotesteis anu secuiity foices fiom
iooftops. While the Westein mainstieam meuia attempteu to uismiss these
fiequently citeu iepoits as giounuless Syiian piopaganua, the iising ueath toll of
goveinment tioops ceitainly coulu not be attiibuteu to "unaimeu civilians. By eaily
Naich 2u11, multiple iepoits suifaceu accusing NAT0 of tiaining iebel fighteis in
1S Fiee Syiian Aimy plagueu by uivision, ulobal Post, Naich 1u, 2u12
16 The Syiian Nuslim Biotheihoou anu the Asau Regime, Bianueis 0niveisity, Becembei 2u1u
17 Repoit of Aiab League 0bseivei Nission, League of Aiab States, }anuiaiy 27, 2u12
18 The obseivei Ahmeu Nanaï "The Aiab League has buiieu the obseiveis iepoit on Syiia,"
Nawaat, Febiuaiy u8, 2u12
Libya anu using unmaikeu aiiciafts to tianspoit aimeu fighteis to aii bases in
Tuikey to assist the Fiee Syiian Aimy. The Fxominer iepoits :
Tbe fiqbters ore beinq recruiteJ from tbe vorious libyon militios, wbicb fouqbt tbe
6oJJofi reqime. About 4,000 bove volunteereJ to fiqbt witb onti-AssoJ forces,
occeptinq tbe offer of $1,000 siqninq bonus, in oJJition to o montbly woqe of $4S0 -
poiJ for, occorJinq to some unconfirmeJ reports in fresbly printeJ ´crisp´ bronJ
new Americon $100 Jollor bills, leoJinq some to believe tbot tbis is 0S toxpoyer funJs
beinq useJ bere. 0pon lonJinq in Turkey, tbe libyon fiqbters onJ tbe orms sbipments
ore offlooJeJ from tbe plones onJ tben looJeJ on trucks to Iree Syrion Army boses,
most of wbicb ore locoteJ in tbe lskenJerun reqion of Turkey on tbe borJer of
nortbwestern Syrio. Tbey receive militory troininq from Western, Turkisb onJ Arob
ormy instructors, os well os civilion security consultonts onJ ex-speciol forces troiners
from tbe 0S, Britoin, Ironce, ltoly, SouJi Arobio, }orJon onJ µotor.
19
In "Libya's new iuleis offei weapons to Syiian iebels," The Teleqropb iepoiteu
that membeis of the Libyan National Tiansition Council met with membeis of the
Syiian National Council to offei money, tiaining anu weapons to Syiian iebel
fighteis.
2u
Accoiuing to Libyan militaiy souices, Abuulhakim Belhauj, heau of the
Tiipoli Nilitaiy Council anu the foimei leauei of the militant Libyan Islamic Fighting
uioup (0S State Bepaitment listeu Teiioiist 0iganization #28), met with Fiee Syiian
Aimy leaueis in Istanbul, on the oiueis of Nustafa Abuul }alil, Piesiuent of the
National Tiansition Council. Belhauj, who hau fought with the Taliban against 0S
tioops in Afghanistan, was captuieu by the CIA in Nalaysia in 2uuS anu extiauiteu to
Libya wheie Nuammai uauuafi hau him impiisoneu. Stuuies conuucteu by the
Combating Teiioiism Centei at the 0S Nilitaiy Acauemy at West Point analyzing
foieign militants who came to Iiaq to fight Ameiican anu coalition foices concluue
that Libya pioviueu the highest numbei of foieign fighteis pei capita.
21
The vast
majoiity of fighteis came fiom Beinah, a town about 2uu km east of Benghazi, in
which an Islamic emiiate was ueclaieu when the iebellion against uauuafi staiteu.
Libyan iebel leauei Abuulhakim Belhauj woulu also aumit that fighteis fiom his
Libyan Islamic Fighting uioup weie the seconu-laigest biigaue of foieign fighteis in
Iiaq. The lrisb Times woulu iepoit that Nahui al-Baiati, a ueputy chief of the Libyan
Nilitaiy Council, hau iesigneu fiom his uuties in Tiipoli to oveisee the Fiee Syiian
Aimy.
22
This vast bouy of uocumenteu eviuence anu aumissions show the uiiect
connection between the Westein-backeu militant foices that weie taskeu with
toppling the uauuafi iegime, anu those woiking towaiu the same outcome in Syiia.
19 0S helping to tiain anu aim Islamic meicenaiies to fight in Syiia, The Examinei, Naich 9, 2u12
2u Libya's new iuleis offei weapons to Syiian iebels, The Telegiaph, Novembei 2S, 2u11
21 Al-Qa'iaua's Foieign Fighteis in Iiaq, Combating Teiioiism Centei At West Point, Becembei 19,
2uu7
22 Libyan-Iiish commanuei iesigns as ueputy heau of Tiipoli militaiy council, The Iiish Times,
0ctobei 11, 2u11
As Syiian state Tv bioaucasteu iepoits showing seizeu weapons stockpiles anu
confessions by teiioiists uesciibing how they obtaineu aims fiom foieign souices,
Westein meuia entiiely uismisseu the iepoits anu continueu to unueimine the
legitimacy of the Syiian state meuia. Within the pages of the Asborq Al-Awsot
newspapei (baseu in Lonuon anu funueu by Sauui Aiabia), Billaiy Clinton joineu
Baiack 0bama, Nicholas Saikozy, anu Baviu Cameion in the unusual tienu of
Westein political leaueis wiiting newspapei euitoiials in an attempt to ieinfoice the
evei-changing, contiauictoiy official naiiative of events in Syiia. Clinton's aiticle
entitleu, "Theie is no going back in Syiia," states:
lf PresiJent AssoJ believes tbot tbe protests ore tbe work of foreiqn instiqotors -- os
bis qovernment bos cloimeJ -- be is wronq. lt is true tbot some Syrion solJiers bove
been killeJ, onJ we reqret tbe loss of tbose lives too. But tbe vost mojority of cosuolties
bove been unormeJ civilions.
2S
Clinton's own aumission that Syiian soluieis have uieu inuicates that inueeu,
aimeu inuiviuuals weie amongst the piotesteis. Extiaoiuinaiily, Clinton manages to
both confiim anu ueny the violent natuie of the piotests by stating that while Syiian
tioops have uieu, the vast majoiity of the ueaths (accoiuing to unveiifieu iepoits by
the piotesteis themselves) weie "unaimeu civilians." Thioughout Billaiy Clinton's
lengthy uiatiibe, she faileu to even once conuemn the violence she hinteu at amongst
the opposition. Aiticles such as the Cbristion Science Honitor's "Bas Syiia's peaceful
upiising tuineu into an insuiiection." attempteu to spin incieasing iepoits of Syiian
iebel gioups committing violence in an effoit to negate the insuiiectionaiy natuie of
the Syiian conflict since its oiigins in Baiaa.
24
The aiticle suggesteu that the Syiian
goveinment is unjustifiably using violence against its own people anu has thus,
"biought it on themselves" in iegaiu to the incieasing violence exeiciseu by the
militant opposition. Syiia's mobilization of entiie aimoieu uivisions anu militaiy
aiiciaft woulu not be necessaiy if piotesteis weie meiely caiiying placaius anu
chanting slogans.
In }une 2u11, Fiance woulu aumit to violating the teims of 0N Resolution 197S by
aiming Libya's iebels, who weie iefeiieu to as "peaceful piotestois" until the
establishment of the no-fly zone, fiom which point they weie lent auuitional
weapons when it became cleai they coulu not take the countiy by themselves. By late
}uly 2u11, violence continueu unimpeueu in Syiia as suppoiteis of the iebel fighteis,
peipetuating the ongoing uniest, woulu uefenu theii actions by claiming that
piotesteis weie meiely uefenuing themselves against a genociual goveinment, even
as mainstieam outlets such as Sky News iepoit that a Syiian aimy assault in Bamah
"piompteu opposition gunmen to fiie machine guns anu set police stations on fiie."
Tuikey claimeu it seizeu a Syiian ship allegeuly caiiying weapons, ueclaiing its
intentions to enfoice an "aims embaigo" on the state foi its "biutal ciackuown on the
countiy's upiising." Tuikey's Piime Ninistei, Recep Tayyip Eiuogan, stateu that
Tuikey was "cooiuinating its effoits" with Washington in its biu to piessuie Syiian
2S 0p-Eu: "Theie Is No uoing Back in Syiia," 0.S Bepaitment of State 0fficial Blog, }une 17, 2u11
24 Bas Syiia's peaceful upiising tuineu into an insuiiection., Chiistian Science Nonitoi, }une 9,
2u11
piesiuent Bashai al-Assau to iesign by enfoicing a stiict iegime of sanctions against
the nation.
2S

While the Tuikish state conuemns the allegeu iepoits of state violence committeu
by the Syiian goveinment, Ankaia itself has been waging a uecaues-long campaign of
violence against its own aimeu upiising in pieuominately Kuiuish aieas boiueiing
Syiia, Iiaq, anu Iian. In fact, at one point, the 0S alloweu Tuikish tanks to cioss into
Ameiican-occupieu Iiaq to attack villages suspecteu of haiboiing aimeu Kuiuish
sepaiatists in 2uu8, miiioiing the veiy tactics Eiuogan has conuemneu Syiia foi
allegeuly using. The 6uorJion iepoiteu in a 2uu8 aiticle, "Iiaq uemanus Tuikey
withuiaw fiom boiuei conflict with Kuius," that the conflict hau been iaging since
1984 anu hau cost the lives of 4u,uuu people.
26
While Tuikey's Piime Ninistei
lectuieu neighboiing Syiia on its biu to ciush foieign-funueu, aimeu militants
attempting to oveithiow the Assau goveinment, the Tuikish goveinment was
piepaiing to augment its compliment of Isiaeli uiones with a ueployment of 0S
Pieuatoi uiones on its soil to combat Kuiuish militants opeiating within its teiiitoiy.
The AssocioteJ Press iepoiteu in an aiticle titleu, "Tuikey: 0S likely to ueploy
Pieuatoi uiones," that Tuikey was "piessing foi the uiones in an escalating wai
against Kuiuish iebels." Tuikey, in auuition to ueploying uiones anu iolling tanks
into towns suspecteu of haiboiing militants, has also stiafeu suspecteu iebel
stiongholus with aiistiikes anu conuucteu sweeping nationwiue mass aiiests. In
othei woius, Tuikey has histoiically committeu the same aggiessive acts that Syiia
was accuseu of committing in its effoit to oveicome insuigent violence uiiecteu at
the state anu civilians.
27
Amnesty lnternotionol, Eumon Riqbts Wotcb, anu a myiiau of
uisingenuous human iights auvocate gioups iemaineu pieuictably silent iegaiuing
Tuikey's actions, even as Ankaia unilateially ciosseu boiueis in puisuit of militants,
an egiegious tiansgiession against its neighbois' soveieignty. uioups such as
Fieeuom Bouse, Reporters Witbout BorJers, anu Inteinational Feueiation foi Buman
Rights (FIBB), all of which ieceive funuing fiom the 0S State Bepaitment anu Wall
Stieet financieis such as ueoige Soios, uemonstiate the way in which these
conuemnations aie selectively applieu.
Syiian Kuius have allegeuly paiticipateu in the upiising against the Assau
goveinment, fuithei expanuing the iiony of Tuikey's intiusions into Syiia's uomestic
affaiis. The }erusolem Post also iepoiteu that Kuiuish "activists" living abioau,
conveneu in Euiope to call on Syiia's Kuiuish minoiity to join the upiising.
28
The
Kuius have been the histoiical pioxy of choice foi Westein poweis anu theii client
states to uestabilize anu haiass taiget nations thioughout the Niuule East with a
2S Syiian Civilians 'Killeu In Tank Attack', Sky News, }uly S1, 2u11
26 Iiaq uemanus Tuikey withuiaw fiom boiuei conflict with Kuius, The uuaiuian, Febiuaiy 28,
2uu8
27 Tuikey: 0S likely to ueploy Pieuatoi uiones, Associateu Piess, Septembei 24, 2u11
28 Syiian Kuius unite amiu onslaught, The }eiusalem Post, Septembei 6, 2u11
ceitain uegiee of "plausible ueniability." By eaily Septembei 2u11, Al-}ozeero (a
netwoik funueu by the goveinment of Qatai, a nation implicateu in pioviuing aims to
the Syiian opposition) laiu to iest the fable that Syiia's piotesteis aie "peaceful, pio-
uemociacy uemonstiatois," by aumitting that they weie aimeu anu iesponsible foi
the muiuei of ovei 7uu membeis of Syiia's secuiity foices in a featuie titleu, "Syiia:
The ievolution will be weaponiseu." Bespite aumitting that hunuieus of Syiia's
secuiity foices uieu uuiing months of infighting with iebel foices, Al-}ozeero´s aiticle
misiepiesenteu the situation by claiming that, "only now," weie piotesteis thinking
about aiming themselves anu that the Syiian militaiies' heavy losses weie the iesult
of isolateu, aimeu opposition gioups.
29
It is thiough this puiposefully uistoiteu lens
that calls foi militaiy inteivention woulu continually be maue.
Aftei months of uenying the existence of insuiiectionaiy elements within the
Syiian opposition, the 0S-baseu Council on Foieign Relations issueu iepoits
confiiming that, not only weie the "piotesteis" aimeu, but that iebel foices on the
giounu collectively foimeu a iesistance aimy of 1S,uuu fighteis. The CFR claimeu
this "Fiee Syiian Aimy" was iequesting weapons anu aii suppoit, uespite
uocumenteu iepoits of weapons being smuggleu past Syiia's boiueis fiom foieign-
suppoiteis, most notably, Tuikey, Lebanon, Isiael, anu Libya.
Su
CFR's iepoit then goes
on to exploie the options available to NAT0 foi facilitating "iegime change," incluuing
the use of "oveiheau suiveillance assets, logistical enableis, peacekeepeis, aimeu
uiones, combat aiiciaft, giounu tioops," anu "smuggleu weapons." The claims of a
laige, aimeu militant foice opeiating insiue of Syiia uiiectly contiauicteu the West's
concuiient naiiative that Syiia's militaiy is iunning iampant anu killing uefenseless
civilians. With an aimy of "1S,uuu uefectois" attempting to seize the nation by foice,
with the help of foieign money, weapons, anu uiplomatic suppoit, one finus it
uifficult to believe the Syiian goveinment woulu insteau be spenuing its time
conuucting massacies. Ironce24 iepoiteu that Syiia's Nuslim Biotheihoou woulu
claim iesponsibility foi two suiciue bombings in Bamascus that killeu 44 people in
Becembei 2u11, citing an official aumission on the gioup's website:
0ne of our victorious Sunni briqoJes wos oble to torqet tbe stote security builJinq in
Kfor Suseb in tbe beort of tbe 0moyyoJ copitol Bomoscus in o successful operotion
corrieJ out by four of our komikozes Jrown from tbe best of our qlorious men, leovinq
mony JeoJ onJ wounJeJ from tbe ronks of tbe AssoJ qonqs.
S1
In Febiuaiy 2u12, both Russia anu China exeiciseu theii influence in the 0niteu
Nations Secuiity Council by vetoing a iesolution to inteivene in Syiia on giounus
that uoing so woulu compiise Syiian national soveieignty, piompting fieiy ihetoiic
fiom iepiesentatives of the 0niteu States. 0S Ambassauoi to the 0niteu Nations,
Susan Rice, calleu the veto "uisgusting anu shameful," while 0S Secietaiy of State
Billaiy Clinton lamenteu, "What happeneu yesteiuay at the 0niteu Nations was a
29 Syiia: The ievolution will be weaponiseu, Al-}azeeia, Septembei 2S, 2u11
Su Syiia: Nilitaiy Inteivention A La Caite, Council on Foieign Relations, Novembei 28, 2u11
S1 Thousanus join Syiian funeial ceiemony, PiessTv, Becembei 24, 2u12
tiavesty." The opposition Syiian National Council saiu it helu Noscow anu Beijing
"iesponsible foi the escalating acts of killing anu genociue; it consiueis this an
iiiesponsible step that is tantamount to a license to kill with impunity."
S2

SS
The uiplomatic uiveigence that hau unfolueu at the 0niteu Nations woulu leau to
the foimation of the "Fiienus of Syiia" gioup, amiu calls by foimei Fiench Piesiuent
Nicolas Saikozy to foim a "gioup of likeminueu nations to cooiuinate assistance to
the Syiian opposition," auuing, "Fiance is not giving up."
S4
Bistoiy is a staik
ieminuei of the uisingenuous intent of uiplomatic suppoit fiom Paiis. }ust as the
Fiench colonial auministiation employeu the use of foieign soluieis to smothei those
seeking to abolish the Fiench-manuateu piotectoiate, IéJérotion Syrienne, so too aie
the Fiench implicateu in aiming anu suppoiting foieign fighteis against Syiia. }ust as
Fiench planes bombeu Bamascus into submission while foimei Piime Ninistei Faiis
al-Khouiy aigueu the case foi Syiian inuepenuence befoie 0niteu Nations in 194S,
Fiance has again shown its willingness to piomote the iuea of militaiy inteivention,
using aii supeiioiity to pummel the Assau goveinment. Euiopean goveinments
woulu not be the only political entities to withuiaw suppoit fiom the Syiian
goveinment; emeiging figuies in the Aiab woilu woulu also capitulate to Westein
piessuie. Likewise, in Tunisia, the iecently installeu Piesiuent Noncef Naizouki
(heau of the founuation-funueu Tunisian League foi Buman Rights, a iecipient of
funus uiiectly fiom the 0S State Bepaitment thiough the National Enuowment foi
Bemociacy anu ueoige Soios' 0pen Society Institute) withuiew Tunisia's iecognition
of the Syiian goveinment, piompting the expulsion of Syiian ambassauois fiom
Tunis anu its newly-instateu allies in the iegion.
SS

In Libya, Washington's suppoit foi insuigent foices continueu unabateu, uespite a
giowing census conceineu with iouge Islamist elements taking pait. In an attempt to
auuiess those conceins, 0S Senatoi }ohn NcCain visiteu Libya piioi to the fall of
uauuafi to auuiess ciowus gatheieu outsiue Benghazi's histoiic couithouse anu
pleugeu $2S million in foieign assistance to the Libyan opposition, stating:
l bove met witb tbese brove fiqbters, onJ tbey ore not ol-µoeJo. To tbe controry:
Tbey ore libyon potriots wbo wont to liberote tbeir notion. We sboulJ belp tbem Jo it.
S6
S2 Russia anu China's Syiia veto 'uisgusting anu shameful', says 0S, The uuaiuian, Febiuaiy u7,
2u12
SS Syiia ciisis: Billaiy Clinton calls 0N veto 'tiavesty,' BBC, Febiuaiy uS, 2u12
S4 Russia anu China Block 0.N. Action on Ciisis in Syiia, The New Yoik Times, Febiuaiy u4, 2u12
SS Tunisia "to withuiaw iecognition" of Syiia goveinment, Reuteis, Febiuaiy 4, 2u12
S6 STATENENT BY SENAT0R NcCAIN IN BENuBAZI, LIBYA, 0niteu States Senatoi }ohn NcCain,
Apiil 22, 2u11
By Naich 2u12, the veiy same Benghazi couithouse flew the black flags of Al
Qaeua.
S7
NcCain attempteu to ueceive the woilu in the puisuit of suppoiting
opeiatives of 0S State Bepaitment-listeu teiioiist oiganizations, militants fiom the
eastein iegion's Libyan Islamic Fighting uioup (LIFu), who fought in both
Afghanistan anu Iiaq against Ameiican foices. NcCain woulu not only ihetoiically
suppoit teiioiists, but also pioviue them with mateiial suppoit incluuing weapons,
funus, tiaining, anu aii suppoit in uiiect violation of 0SC § 2SS9A & 2SS9B,
"pioviuing mateiial suppoit oi iesouices to uesignateu foieign teiioiist
oiganizations." NcCain's oiganization, the Inteinational Republican Institute (IRI),
was mentioneu by name in the New Yoik Times foi contiibuting suppoit to
opposition elements thioughout the Aiab woilu, piioi to the events of the "Aiab
Spiing." In an Apiil 2u11 aiticle publisheu by the New Yoik Times titleu, "0.S. uioups
Belpeu Nuituie Aiab 0piisings," it was stateu:
A number of tbe qroups onJ inJiviJuols Jirectly involveJ in tbe revolts onJ reforms
sweepinq tbe reqion, incluJinq tbe April 6 Youtb Hovement in Fqypt, tbe Bobroin
Center for Eumon Riqbts onJ qross-roots octivists like Fntsor µoJbi, o youtb leoJer in
Yemen, receiveJ troininq onJ finoncinq from qroups like tbe lnternotionol Republicon
lnstitute, tbe Notionol Bemocrotic lnstitute onJ IreeJom Eouse, o nonprofit bumon
riqbts orqonizotion boseJ in Wosbinqton.
S8
While officials in Noscow voiceu theii seveie agitation with Washington's iefusal
to pioviue legal guaiantees that Ameiica's anti-ballistic missile system pioposeu foi
constiuction in Eastein Euiope woulu not be useu to taiget Russia, NcCain taunteu
heaus of state of in both Russia anu China at the height of uniest in Noith Afiica by
claiming:
l woulJ be o little less cocky in tbe Kremlin witb my K6B cronies toJoy if l were
vloJimir Putin. l woulJ be o little less secure in tbe seosiJe resort of PresiJent Eu onJ o
few men wbo qovern onJ JeciJe tbe fote of 1.S billion people.
S9
NcCain's IRI woulu be instiumental in geneiating uoubt iegaiuing the valiuity of
Russia's piesiuential elections by funuing seveial 0S-backeu Nu0s, paiticulaily
u0L0S, an inuepenuent electoial commission seeking to "expose voting
iiiegulaiities," amiu wiuespieau ciiticism fiom Russian lawmakeis anu obseivei
gioups. ueoigy Fyouoiov, chief executive of Russian obseivei association Civil
Contiol stateu:
Tbey bove o cleor Jestobilizinq toctic; tbey ore corefully conJitioninq tbe public to
beor some ´breokinq´ news of election frouJ. Tbe meJio will bove o fielJ Joy topinq tbe
ensuinq closbes between pro-Kremlin onJ notionolist youtb beinq JisperseJ by speciol
police. Tbis kinJ of footoqe woulJ Jilute ony remoininq trust in Russion elections.
4u
S7 Benghazi: A Sea of Al-Qaeua Flags, National Review 0nline, Novembei uS, 2u11
S8 0.S. uioups Belpeu Nuituie Aiab 0piisings, The New Yoik Times, Apiil 14, 2u11
S9 NcCain: Egypt Revolution Will Bave Ripple Effect Acioss the ulobe, F0X News, Febiuaiy 1S,
2u11
NcCain's iole in the attempteu uestabilization of Russia woulu pale in compaiison
to his bellicose ihetoiic on Syiia, wheie he has taken eveiy oppoitunity to call foi
assisting Syiian opposition fighteis by suggesting the use of foice against Bamascus.
NcCain woulu call foi 0S aiistiikes on Syiia, piomoting the use of Ameiica's militaiy
while being unable to cite any cieuible oi imminent thieat to 0S teiiitoiial secuiity, a
seemingly punishable offense oi, at minimum, a sign of mental instability anu
giounus foi uismissing the ageing Senatoi. Like NcCain, Libya's newly appointeu
Piime Ninistei, foimei Petioleum Institute chaiiman Abuuiiahim el-Keib, woulu
flatly ueny allegations by Russian 0N Ambassauoi vitaly Chuikin that Libya was
uiiectly funuing, tiaining, anu aiming militants in Syiia. El-Keib's uenial stanus in
uiiect contiauiction of iepoits like the Teleqropb's "Leauing Libyan Islamist met
Syiian Aimy 0pposition uioup," wheie it was iepoiteu, "the new Libyan authoiities
hau offeieu money anu weapons to the giowing insuigency against Bashai al-Assau."
41
Buiing talks with Libya's el-Keib, 0S Secietaiy of State Billaiy Clinton woulu aumit
that the 0S was oiganizing the Syiian opposition into a fiont similai to what the 0S
anu NAT0 hau assembleu in Libya befoie commencing months of NAT0
bombaiument, leauing to uevastating sieges of the cities of Tiipoli, Bani Waliu, anu
Siite. Clinton woulu concluue:
}ust tbink, tbis time lost yeor, tbe 0niteJ Stotes wos workinq to builJ on
internotionol coolition of support for tbe libyon people, onJ toJoy, we ore prouJ to
continue tbot support os tbe people of libyo builJ o new Jemocrocy tbot will brinq
obout peoce onJ prosperity, onJ protect tbe riqbts onJ Jiqnity of every citizen.
42
Clinton's comments woulu follow wiuespieau iepoits fiom Libya inuicating that
iebels involveu in the savage assassination of Nuammai uauuafi weie now
peisecuting migiant woikeis fiom Chau anu Nigei, as well as uaik-skinneu Libyans
in a campaign of iacial violence sweeping the countiy. 0n a visit to Libya in late
August 2u11, Foimei 0S Congiessman Waltei Fauntioy claimeu to have witnesseu
Fiench anu Banish Special Foices stoiming small villages late at night, beheauing
anu killing both iebels anu loyalists, iepoits state:
Tbe rebels tolJ Iountroy tbey boJ been tolJ by tbe Furopeon forces to stoy insiJe.
AccorJinq to Iountroy, tbe Furopeon forces woulJ tell tbe rebels, ´look ot wbot you
JiJ.´ ln otber worJs, tbe Irencb onJ Bonisb were orJerinq tbe bombinqs onJ killinqs,
onJ qivinq creJit to tbe rebels.
4S
Following NAT0's inteivention into Libya, the nation woulu be plungeu into
peipetual violence anu social uivision as waiiing tiibes anu militias sought to usuip
contiol ovei teiiitoiy, thus caiving the once unifieu Libya into a myiiau of fiefuoms
4u voteis' iights gioup inciting "0iange Revolution". RiaNovosti, Novembei 18, 2u11
41 Leauing Libyan Islamist met Fiee Syiian Aimy opposition gioup, Novembei 27, 2u11
42 Remaiks With Piime Ninistei Elkeib Aftei Theii Neeting, 0.S. Bepaitment of State, Naich 8,
2u12
4S Ex-Congiessman Feaieu Beau in Libya, Retuins Bome, New Ameiica Neuia, Septembei 14, 2u11
unuei the watch of the unstable National Tiansition Council in Tiipoli. BBC's "Libya
militia 'teiioiises' pio-uauuafi town of Tawaigha," iepoiteu that an entiie town once
populateu with Su,uuu iesiuents woulu be abanuoneu, uue to teiioiist militias
taigeting uauuafi loyalists.
44
In Naich 2u12, uistuibing viueo footage woulu suiface,
uepicting Aiab Libyan iebels foice-feeuing gieen Libya flags (iepiesenting the peiiou
of uauuafi's iule) to captuieu Afiican Libyan civilians, while the captois coulu be
heaiu shouting, "eat youi flag, you uog."
Such iealities aie uevoiu of Clinton's vision of "iights anu uignity foi eveiy
citizen," a staik piecuisoi to events that woulu follow in Syiia.
4S
By Naich 16, 2u12,
Reuters woulu iepoit in theii aiticle, "Tuikey consiueis buffei zone along Syiia
boiuei," that "Tuikey is consiueiing setting up a buffei zone insiue Syiia to tackle a
giowing flow of iefugees fleeing the conflict theie."
46
The pioposeu buffei zone
woulu have inueeu been on Syiian soil, iequiiing an aimeu Tuikish piesence to
maintain it. Tuikey, a nation that has caiiieu out systematic campaigns of violence
against the Kuiu minoiity within anu beyonu its own boiueis foi uecaues, anu still
uenies the Aimenian genociue of the eaily 19uu's, is the least qualifieu canuiuate in
oi aiounu the Niuule East to claim "humanitaiian conceins" as justification foi any
geopolitical maneuvei. Ankaia, with its ambitions of iegional hegemony, woulu
continue leauing effoits to funnel NAT0 iesouices into the hanus of militants
woiking to uestabilize Syiia anu oveithiow its goveinment. 0n Naich 18, 2u12,
tiiple suiciue bombings taigeting goveinment builuings woulu iip thiough a
Chiistian neighboihoou in the Syiian capital of Bamascus, killing an estimateu 27
civilians. The Austrolion woulu iepoit in its aiticle, "Bombs in Syiia as Sauuis 'senu
aims to iebels'," that Sauui Aiabia (the iecipient of significant amounts of militaiy
funuing fiom the 0niteu States) hau begun shipping aims to the Syiian opposition,
"Sauui militaiy equipment is on its way to }oiuan to aim the Fiee Syiian Aimy,"
quoting an Aiab uiplomat.
47
A six-point peace plan ciafteu by Kofi Annan (a close affiliate of ueoige Soios,
Zbigniew Bizezinski, Isiaeli Piesiuent Shimon Peies, Egypt's Nohammeu ElBaiauei,
Richaiu Aimitage anu Kenneth Auelman) woulu be put into effect in Febiuaiy 2u12,
calling foi a cease-fiie between iebel anu goveinment foices.
Publications ieleaseu in Naich 2u12 by The Biookings Institution, a coipoiate-
funueu 0S think-tank noteu foi influencing Ameiican foieign policy, pioviues fuithei
insight into the natuie of Washington's objectives in Syiia. Biookings' Niuule East
Nemo titleu "Saving Syiia: Assessing 0ptions foi Regime Change," woulu uocument
aumissions that Syiia's iebels weie coopeiating with Al Qaeua anu caiiying out an
incieasing amount of sectaiian violence, anu how Kofi Annan's peace plan woulu be
44 Libya militia 'teiioiises' pio-uauuafi town of Tawaigha, BBC, 0ctobei S1, 2u11
4S Libyan iebels foice black Afiicans to eat flags in cage, The Telegiaph, Naich uS, 2u12
46 Tuikey consiueis buffei zone along Syiia boiuei, ABC, Naich 17, 2u12
47 Bombs in Syiia as Sauuis 'senu aims to iebels', The Austialian, Naich 19, 2u12
useu in an attempt to establish an occupieu "safe haven" on Syiian teiiitoiy, wheie
fuithei attacks coulu be launcheu.
48
Biookings' Nemo woulu meticulously theoiize
about ways to oveithiow the Assau goveinment, incluuing the use of ciippling
economic sanctions to fuithei incite uniest anu the leveiaging of human iights
abuses to aggiessively inteivene in Syiia:
Workinq witb its Arob, reqionol, onJ Western portners, Wosbinqton con pusb for o
more effective bumonitorion response onJ pove tbe woy for more oqqressive
intervention options to topple AssoJ.
Biookings woulu attiibute heavy buuget iestiaints anu a public waiy of fighting
wais oveiseas to Washington's stiategy of leauing fiom behinu, by continually
piessuiing neighboiing countiies like }oiuan anu Tuikey to pioviue suppoit foi the
militant Syiian opposition:
lsroel coulJ posture forces on or neor tbe 6olon Eeiqbts onJ, in so Joinq, miqbt
Jivert reqime forces from suppressinq tbe opposition. Tbis posture moy conjure feors in
tbe AsoJ reqime of o multi-front wor, porticulorly if Turkey is willinq to Jo tbe some on
its borJer onJ if tbe Syrion opposition is beinq feJ o steoJy Jiet of orms onJ troininq.
Tbese ollies woulJ bove to proviJe secure boses for tbe opposition on Syrio´s
borJers, protecteJ by tbeir own ormeJ forces. Tbeir militories coulJ Jo mucb of tbe
orminq onJ troininq, in conjunction witb tbe 0niteJ Stotes. Areo intelliqence services,
perbops incluJinq lsroel´s, coulJ olso work bebinJ tbe scenes to unJermine AsoJ´s
reqime onJ bolster tbe opposition.
The Biookings Nemo highlights Washington's commitment to oveithiowing the
Syiian goveinment using the most cost-effective means possible. While Billaiy
Clinton anu otheis paiu lip seivice to suppoiting the ceasefiie pioposeu by the
Annan Plan, the iepoit woulu state in iefeience to aiming the iebels:
Alternotively, tbe 0niteJ Stotes miqbt colculote tbot it is still wortbwbile to pin
Jown tbe AsoJ reqime onJ bleeJ it, keepinq o reqionol oJversory weok, wbile ovoiJinq
tbe costs of Jirect intervention.
Tbe bope is tbot tbe 0niteJ Stotes coulJ fiqbt o ´cleon´ wor from 10,000 feet onJ
leove tbe Jirty work on tbe qrounJ to tbe Iree Syrion Army, perbops even obviotinq o
mossive commitment to lroq-style notion-builJinq.
The obscuie uocument ieleaseu by the Biookings Institution seives as a
testament to the unueilying politicization of the "Responsibility to Piotect" in Syiia,
as atiocities woulu be oichestiateu as a pietext to piotect civilians, to waiiant
toppling the Syiian goveinment anu fuitheiing Washington's geopolitical objectives
in the iegion. As the uniest in Syiia continueu, it became incieasingly moie uifficult
to ueny the West's intentional uestabilization of Syiia by peipetuating extensive
bloousheu thiough iauical militant gioups opeiating on Syiia's boiueis, as well as
within Syiia itself. In late Naich, Nichael E. 0'Banlon, Biiectoi of Reseaich anu
Senioi Fellow at Foieign Policy anu membei of ueneial Baviu Petiaeus's Exteinal
Auvisoiy Boaiu at the Cential Intelligence Agency woulu authoi an 0p-Eu titleu,
"What Aie 0ui Nilitaiy 0ptions in Syiia." pioposing seveial contingency options to
suit Syiia's geopolitical pieuisposition, as 0S-backeu upiisings, aimeu militants, anu
48 Saving Syiia: Assessing 0ptions foi Regime Change, Biookings Institution, Naich 1S, 2u12
sanctions hau all alieauy been set in motion to no avail, leaving only oveit militaiy
options on the table.
49
The militaiy measuies 0'Banlon envisions to achieve the
oveithiow of Syiia's goveinment incluue:
- A punitive naval or air operation to encourage a coup against Assad that
woulu iightfully be consiueieu an outiight act of wai, uesigneu to completely cut off
Syiia, incluuing its millions of civilians, fiom impoiting oi expoiting anything.
0'Banlon's aiticle also pioposes aiistiikes uesigneu to psychologically shake Assau's
allies anu panic them into uefecting anu insteau, "shaie powei" with the 0S-backeu
opposition.
- A broader Balkans-like campaign to belp depose Assad. By this, 0'Banlon is
iefeiiing to a campaign similai to that which befell Libya, with the euitoiial focus on
the Balkans, uue to its place in histoiical hinusight anu numeious attempts to
iewiite its histoiical outcome as "favoiable." Evoking the NAT0-leu opeiation that
hau just unfolueu in Libya, complete with the uestiuction of seveial majoi cities,
woulu be a staik ieminuei to potential uefectois in Syiia of the cost that comes with
allowing a nation to be subjecteu to NAT0-leu inteinational inteivention. That cost
woulu be the plunging of Syiia into peipetual uivision, instability, violence, anu an
unceitain political futuie.
- Tbe creation of a safe zone for Syrian civilians beais stiiking similaiity to
what Tuikey has been electeu to cieate, with such a zone being exploiteu as a base
fiom which incieasing hostilities coulu be conuucteu, as suggesteu by the Biookings
Institution, which stateu:
An olternotive is for Jiplomotic efforts to focus first on bow to enJ tbe violence onJ
bow to qoin bumonitorion occess, os is beinq Jone unJer Annon´s leoJersbip. Tbis moy
leoJ to tbe creotion of sofe-bovens onJ bumonitorion corriJors, wbicb woulJ bove to
be bockeJ by limiteJ militory power. Tbis woulJ, of course, foll sbort of 0.S. qools for
Syrio onJ coulJ preserve AsoJ in power. Irom tbot stortinq point, bowever, it is
possible tbot o brooJ coolition witb tbe oppropriote internotionol monJote coulJ oJJ
furtber coercive oction to its efforts.
0'Banlon inuiiectly aumits that this option may only be accomplisheu as a iesult
of the successful applications of one oi both of the above mentioneu options.
0'Banlon uiu not wiite these options foi the consiueiation of the Pentagon, but
insteau, foi Westein punuits anu meuia outlets that useu extoition against Syiia's
establishment, pieying on the feai of Assau's political allies anu those acioss Syiia's
business community who hau stoou behinu theii nation's goveinment. Syiia's
opposition hau been entiiely uepenuent on foieign fighteis, foieign aims, foieign
funus, anu an inteinational consensus that alloweu such foieign iesouices to
continue flowing to them unabateu. While the alteinative meuia iepoiteu on abuses
committeu by the Syiian iebels since the stait of the upiising, Eumon Riqbts Wotcb
(BRW) woulu issue iepoits commenuing the opposition aftei twelve months of
fighting. BRW's Naich 2u12 iepoit titleu, "Syiia: Aimeu 0pposition uioups
Committing Abuses," woulu uetail how Syiia's aimeu opposition conuucteu a
systematic campaign of kiunapping, toituie, anu mass muiuei.
Su
While the iepoit
attempts to focus mainly on atiocities caiiieu out against secuiity foices anu
49 What Aie 0ui Nilitaiy 0ptions in Syiia., The New Republic, Naich 19, 2u12
goveinment suppoiteis, the mention of civilian victims is maue as well. The iepoit
states:
Abuses incluJe kiJnoppinq, Jetention, onJ torture of security force members,
qovernment supporters, onJ people iJentifieJ os members of pro-qovernment militios,
colleJ sbobeebo. Eumon Riqbts Wotcb bos olso receiveJ reports of executions by ormeJ
opposition qroups of security force members onJ civilions.
Eumon Riqbts Wotcb olso expresseJ concern obout ISA [Iree Syrion Army]
kiJnoppinqs of lronion notionols, some of wbom tbe qroup bos confirmeJ ore civilions.
ERW's iepoit uesciibes the Syiian opposition's piactice of iounuing up suspects
anu killing them without tiial, geneially on the giounus of confessions coeiceu
thiough toituie. 0thei executions aie simply caiiieu out as iepiisals with no
appaient offense beyonu suspecteu affiliations being citeu. The iepoit inuicates that
Syiia's militant opposition gioups, like the NAT0-backeu iebels in Libya, weie
lawless, unpiincipleu, sectaiian extiemists, who weie being maiketeu as "uemociacy
activists" anu "unaimeu civilians" in the Westein mainstieam meuia. Fiom the eaily
stages of Syiia's uniest, the alteinative meuia woulu covei the tactics of systematic
violence useu by the opposition, fiom vanualism anu aison, to snipei anu bomb
attacks anu aimeu insuiiectionaiy campaigns of violence. The finuings of (anu
ieactions to) the Eumon Riqbts Wotcb iepoit weie muteu, with most meuia outlets
electing to uownplay, spin, oi obfuscate the tiue implications of the wai ciimes being
caiiieu out by Syiia's opposition - wai ciimes which implicateu NAT0, leu by the 0S,
0K, Fiance, anu Tuikey, as well as theii pioxy "Aiab League," in backing toituieis,
kiunappeis, anu mass muiueieis in theii campaign to topple the Syiian goveinment.
By eaily Apiil 2u12, the "Fiienus of Syiia" gioup met in neighboiing Tuikey to uevise
a methou to ieaim anu ieueploy militant iebel fighteis, while uemanuing Syiian
tioops be withuiawn fiom cities iecaptuieu fiom iebel foices. Noie specifically, BBC
iepoiteu in theii aiticle titleu, "Syiia ciisis uebateu at Istanbul talks," that ways weie
being "exploieu" to "step up piessuie on the Syiian iegime anu bolstei the
opposition." The iepoit also makes mention of calls to aim the opposition, anu offeis
to pay salaiies to iebel fighteis in an effoit to entice Syiian militaiy officeis to
uefect.
S1
While Noscow anu Beijing ieceiveu haish ciiticism anu accusations of being
complicit with the bloousheu in Syiia following theii veto at the 0NSC, the "Fiienus
of Syiia" woulu openly call foi putting piessuie on a goveinment attempting to
iestoie oiuei acioss the countiy, while "bolsteiing" anu aiming the opposition.
While allieu nations pioviueu funuing anu supplies to inuisciiminate iebel
fighteis, Westein leaueis hypociitically claimeu the moial high giounu by
emphasizing theii "iesponsibility to piotect" unaimeu civilians being killeu in the
ensuing ciossfiie. The 2uuS 0N initiative, the "Responsibility to Piotect (R2P)"
uoctiine follows that if a nation is incapable of pioviuing piotection foi its own
population, it ielinquishes its soveieignty to uiiect inteivention by the "inteinational
community." Bespite the obvious inconsistencies between the allegeu naiiative anu
the iealities unfoluing on the giounu in Libya months eailiei, NAT0 evokeu the R2P
Su Syiia: Aimeu 0pposition uioups Committing Abuses, Buman Rights Watch, Naich 2u, 2u12
S1 Istanbul summit tiies to inciease piessuie on Syiia, BBC, Apiil 1, 2u12
uoctiine anu began its militaiy inteivention to "piotect civilians." Fai fiom pioviuing
assistance to civilians, NAT0 pioviueu aii suppoit foi iebel assaults, intelligence anu
special opeiations assistance to iebel militaiy units, anu caiiieu out the systematic
taigeting of uauuafi's political innei ciicle, which incluueu bombing the homes of
uauuafi's family, killing his chiluien anu his gianuchiluien in NAT0 aiistiikes.
Allieu nations gianteu uiplomatic suppoit to goveinments leu by exileu Libyan
politicians anu acauemics, in exchange foi luciative contiacts with the new
goveinment once uauuafi's iegime was toppleu. The 0niteu Kinguom buugeteu $Suu
million on NAT0's inteivention in Libya. Bowevei, accoiuing to the 0K Bepaitment of
Tiaue anu Investment, contiacts to iebuilu the nation in aieas vaiying fiom
healthcaie anu euucation to electiicity anu watei supplies, weie valueu at upwaius
of $Suu billion ovei a 1u-yeai peiiou.
S2
Inteivention in Libya was maue piofitable not
only by ieuevelopment contiacts, but also by the oppoitunity to gain gieatei access
to Libya's vast natuial iesouices. Repoits issueu by the 0S 0ffice of the Biiectoi of
National Intelligence wain of an inteinational fiesh watei ueficit by 2uSu, making
Libya's Nubian Sanustone Aquifei System, the woilu's laigest known fossil watei
aquifei system, a vital anu highly stiategic uispensaiy foi exeiting contiol ovei
Afiica's watei ieseives.
SS
Libya boasts the laigest pioven oil ieseives in Afiica anu
the fifth laigest in the woilu with 76.4 billion baiiels as of 2u1u.
S4
The NTC ueclineu
business oppoitunities to countiies opposeu to NAT0's inteipietation of its manuate
to "piotect civilians", countiies such as ueimany.
SS
Seveial billion uollais woith of
constiuction anu aims contiacts between Russia anu uauuafi's goveinment weie
also subject to ievaluation.
S6
Belegations of the Westein-suppoiteu National
Tiansition Council met in Lonuon to holu talks with top business executives on the
"massive oppoitunity to iebuilu Libya," while officials allegeuly piomiseu the Fiench
oil fiim Total up to SS% of all oil contiacts in exchange foi political suppoit. Eiic
Benece, uiiectoi anu founuei of the Fiench Centei foi Intelligence Stuuies, auueu:
Wben l wos in libyo o few weeks oqo, l trieJ to exploin to tbe NTC tbot tbey will
bove to poy witb tbe money we ore qoinq to senJ tbem bock from tbe omounts frozen
in tbe Western bonks, tbey ore perfectly conscious of wbot is qoinq to boppen. Tbey ore
qoinq to qive bock o lot of money to Ironce, 6reot Britoin onJ oll tbe senior NAT0
countries wbicb boJ been involveJ in tbis operotion.
S7
S2 Nake money, make wai: 0K piofits fiom Libya mess, Russia Touay, Novembei 11, 2u11
SS ulobal 'watei wai' thieat by 2uSu - 0S intelligence, Russia Touay, Naich 22, 2u12
S4 BP Statistical Review of Woilu Eneigy, Biitish Petioleum, }une 2u11
SS Ruin & Rebuilu: Waifaie woith $Suubln Libya winufall, Russia Touay, Novembei 1S, 2u11
S6 uauuafi uemise leaus to questions ovei contiacts, Russia Touay, 0ctobei 2u, 2u11
S7 'Libyan oil contiacts - not the whole stoiy', Russia Touay, Septembei 16, 2u11
Cleaily, NAT0 maue a ciuel mockeiy of the "Responsibility to Piotect" uoctiine,
using it to visit catastiophic hoiiois upon the Libyan people, oveituining a unifieu
national goveinment anu plunging the entiie nation into uivision anu chaos. Bespite
the failuie of NAT0's opeiation in Libya, calls foi implementing the R2P mouel in
Syiia weie maue by the allieu nations that took pait in toppling uauuafi. Fiom the
veiy beginning of uiplomatic effoits to uefuse the Syiian ciisis, 0S policy makeis
aumitteu that Kofi Annan's "peace mission" in Syiia was nothing moie than a iuse to
pieseive NAT0's pioxy foices fiom total uestiuction by cieating "safe havens" fiom
which they woulu opeiate, piolonging the bloousheu while piessuie mounteu on the
Syiian iegime inteinationally. An Apiil 9th, 2u12 posting on NAT0's official " Allionce
News Bloq" titleu, "0S 'alieauy committeu to helping Assau fall'," woulu confiim the
0niteu States' commitment to the oveithiow of Syiia's goveinment, stating that the
0S is "alieauy committeu to helping |Piesiuent Bashai al-Assauj fall," but is "meiely
looking foi the least violent, lowest cost way to get theie."
S8
The aiticle fully uiscloseu that the 0S hau been equipping the so-calleu "Fiee
Syiian Aimy" fuithei aumitting that the Kofi Annan biokeieu "peace ueal" was
meiely a ploy meant to lay the founuation foi iegime change, stating:
lf tbe poce of tbe killinq slows, tbot coulJ buy time: time for economic sonctions to
unJermine tbe reqime, time to cojole Russio to switcb siJes onJ belp pull tbe ruq out
from AssoJ, but olso time for tbe opposition onJ its new ormy to orqonize tbemselves
into o more effective force.
Compounuing theii ciiminality was the fact that, insteau of taking auvantage of a
ceasefiie to biokei a peace ueal anu begin ieconciliation, NAT0 officially enuoiseu
using the lull in fighting to piepaie the next iounu of opposition-fueleu violence,
which they themselves weie fully piepaieu to funu anu aim. NAT0 woulu aumit that
militaiy inteivention is not a mattei of "if" but a mattei of "when" uepenuing on a
pieueteimineu numbei of objectives that must be achieveu fiist. These incluue the
Syiian opposition getting bettei oiganizeu, assuiances that militaiy aiu woulun't fall
into the hanus of "iauical Islamists," anu foi Tuikey, just as Biookings Institution's
uocuments pieviously stateu, "to establish safe havens foi the opposition along its
boiuei with Syiia."
In late Apiil 2u12, Kofi Annan's "peace plan", though publicly enuoiseu, was fully
iejecteu by both the Syiian iebels anu theii Westein anu Aiab League backeis who
woulu continue openly pleuging cash, weapons, anu suppoit foi iebels who
continueu fighting. Reuters iepoiteu in, "0N seeks Syiia nou foi majoi aiu opeiation,"
that the 0N was seeking to biing in "aiu woikeis" anu open offices all acioss Syiia in
oiuei to caiiy out what they calleu a "majoi humanitaiian opeiation."
S9
In full
violation of the pioposeu ceasefiie, the Westein meuia woulu insteau accuse the
Syiian goveinment of failing to meet its obligations. Neo-Conseivative leu think
tanks like the Beniy }ackson Society (B}S), woulu accuse the Syiian goveinment of
"seiially violating" the teims of the 0N pioposeu "peace ueal." Al-}ozeero iegulai,
Nichael Weiss of B}S, openly aumits that "uiplomatic options" weie meiely being
S8 0S 'alieauy committeu to helping Assau fall,' Atlantic Council, Apiil u9, 2u12
S9 0N seeks Syiia nou foi majoi aiu opeiation, Reuteis, Apiil 2u, 2u12
peuuleu to satisfy public opinion anu that ultimately NAT0 will act unilateially,
outsiue of the 0N, to militaiily inteivene. As the West continueu to fuel the violence
anu piessuie foi the appioval of "humanitaiian access" insiue Syiia, militaiy
inteivention woulu ioutinely be pioposeu to combat what will be claimeu to be
Syiian goveinment "belligeience."
0n a neaily uaily basis, the Syiian opposition continueu caiiying out vicious
attacks not only on secuiity foices, but a teiioiist bombing campaign acioss Syiia
that killeu anu maimeu scoies of civilians. While the Syiian opposition claimeu it
lacks the ability to caiiy out such attacks, its militants woulu be exposeu as veiy well
aimeu with peisonnel shelteieu in NAT0 membei Tuikey, its leaueiship shelteieu in
Washington anu Lonuon, anu theii fighteis wieluing not only an enuless supply of
small aims, but iocket piopelleu gienaues, moitais, missiles, anu even tanks. The
Syiian goveinment claimeu that it hau uocumenteu a long list of ceasefiie violations
by the iebels - a list that woulu be confiimeu uaily in heaulines fiom acioss the
biaseu Westein meuia, still attempting to uepict the violence as one-siueu.
Thiee months aftei Iiaqi Al Qaeua leauei Ayman al-Zawahii calleu on Nuslims
fiom acioss the Aiab Woilu to mobilize anu suppoit the Fiee Syiian Aimy by
encouiaging the use of foieign fighteis anu ioausiue bombing tactics, Reuters woulu
publish an aiticle titleu "0utgunneu Syiia iebels make shift to bombs," which
incluueu aumissions fiom the iebels themselves that they weie behinu the spate of
bombings iavaging Syiia.
6u

61
Westein piess anu Syiian opposition leaueis hau
pieviously claimeu that these bombings weie "false flag" attacks caiiieu out by the
Syiian goveinment to unueimine the iebels' legitimacy.
62
Reuters´ aiticle conceues
that while the FSA officially is "upholuing" the 0N tiuce, its fighteis have outiight
iejecteu it anu aie inueeu openly in violation of the ceasefiie. The iepoit also
confiimeu Syiian Piesiuent Bashai al-Assau's statement that his secuiity foices weie
fighting aimeu militants - not piotesteis anu civilians - in secuiity opeiations acioss
Syiia befoie the 0N ceasefiie came into effect. The iepoits states:
Since tbe ormy routeJ tbem from tbeir stronqbolJs in cities, some rebels soiJ tbey
reolizeJ tbot even in querrillo street bottles tbey coulJ not beot AssoJ´s tonks or
ortillery. Tbe Syrion liberotion Army´s spokesmon µJemoti soiJ bis qroup´s fiqbters
were now focusinq most of tbeir ottention on ´monufocturinq focilities´ for bombs. "You
ore qoinq to stort seeinq on escolotion os we improve our tecbniques of bomb-mokinq
onJ Jelivery."
As the Syiian iebels iesoiteu to inuisciiminate teiioiist tactics, an explosion in
the city of Bama in late Apiil killeu 7u people, uevastating much of a city block.
Reuters quoteu one iebel fightei as saying, "We aie staiting to get smaitei about
tactics anu use bombs because people aie just too pooi anu we uon't have enough
iifles, it is just no match foi the aimy, so we aie tiying to focus on the ways we can
6u Leauei of Al Qaeua calls on Nuslims to help Syiian iebels, Fox News, Febiuaiy 12, 2u12
61 0utgunneu Syiia iebels make shift to bombs, Reuteis, Apiil Su, 2u12
62 Syiian opposition suspects iegime behinu bombings, CTv News, Naich 17, 2u12
fight." Reuters attempteu to allay the feais of its ieaueis by claiming that the iebels
they inteivieweu insisteu that, "unlike al Qaeua, theii bombs weie aimeu at militaiy,
anu nevei civilian, taigets." Paiauoxically, howevei, the Reuters stoiy ievealeu that
the iebel bombing campaign was being caiiieu out by "Sunni insuigents" who
leaineu theii bombing skills fiom fighting 0S tioops in neighboiing Iiaq - oi in othei
woius, the veiy "al Qaeua" the iebels claim they aie not like. A "Syiian Libeiation
Aimy" spokesman also aumitteu that his fighteis weie opeiating "manufactuiing
facilities" foi bombs. While the BBC oiiginally iepoiteu that the Syiian goveinment
inuisciiminately fiieu a "SC0B missile" at the city of Bama, iepoits latei suifaceu
that in fact, the explosion was causeu by mishap at a iebel bomb-making facility.
6S

While Syiia's iebels have been noteu as teiioiists, both foieign anu uomestic,
since eaily 2u11 by the alteinative meuia, mainstieam meuia outlets confiimeu that
Syiian iebels weie manufactuiing anu inuisciiminately ueploying explosive uevices
nationwiue ovei a yeai aftei the initial iepoits suifaceu. The Westein piess
attempteu to obfuscate this fact foi as long as possible, iiiepaiably unueimining
theii legitimacy in the piocess. The 0N woulu begin to aumit that inueeu, the Syiian
iebels weie in violation of the ceasefiie, only as the violence ian uemonstiatively
iampant anu out of contiol, with aims, funuing, equipment, tiaining, anu political
suppoit foi the iebels fiom the "Fiienus of Syiia" cauie incluuing the 0S, 0K, Fiance,
Sauui Aiabia, anu Qatai.
64
0n Nay 9th, the Biookings Institution pieuictably ueclaieu
the Annan "peace ueal" a failuie anu that the time to "stietch" Syiia's militaiy to the
bieaking point thiough expanueu foieign-backeu uniest hau come. In an aiticle
titleu, "Annan's Nission Impossible: Why is eveiyone pietenuing that the 0.N. plan in
Syiia has a piayei of succeeuing." Biookings' Boha Centei uiiectoi Salman Shaikh
uepicteu the ceasefiie's failuie as solely the iesult of the Syiian goveinment's
belligeience anu biutality, while mentioning nothing of the Syiian opposition's
uocumenteu, anu even aumitteu, atiocities, stating:
Wbile tbe internotionol community continues to focus on Annon´s efforts, it is
unbelievoble tbot AssoJ onJ bis reqime ore still not seen os internotionol poriobs. Tbe
Syrion qovernment bos lieJ to tbe internotionol community ot every turn. Wben will
tbe worlJ reolize tbot ony ottempt to neqotiote witb AssoJ is utterly futile? Tbe AssoJ
reqime bos so for successfully employeJ o stroteqy of buyinq time, oqreeinq to tbe
Annon plon wbile Joinq everytbinq it con to unJermine it. Heonwbile, tbe
internotionol community bos ployeJ into AssoJ´s bonJs by buyinq into tbe fonciful
loqic tbot tbe introJuction of unormeJ 0.N. observers will estoblisb colm insiJe Syrio
onJ moJerote tbe reqime´s bebovior.
6S
Anu, while poitiaying the Syiian goveinment as iiiationally caiiying out a
campaign of biutality against the Syiian people, Shaikh aumitteu that the "Fiee
Syiian Aimy" was opeiating militaiily out of Tuikey anu that the Syiian National
6S Syiia: Nassive explosion in Bama 'kills 7u', BBC, Apiil 26, 2u12
64 0N: Both siues in Syiia aie violating the tiuce, CBS News, Nay 1, 2u12
6S Annan's Nission Impossible, Foieign Policy, Nay 8, 2u12
Council (SNC) iepiesents foieign haiboieu anu influenceu leaueiship. While Shaikh
poitiayeu Syiia's minoiities as "on the siueline," he ueclineu to explain why they hau
not joineu the foieign-uiiven uniest. In ieality, these minoiity gioups weie the
haiuest hit by iebel atiocities, incluuing Syiia's laige Chiistian communities.
Chiistians in Syiia have been subjecteu to what shoulu be uesciibeu as "ethnic
cleansing," not by Syiian secuiity foices, but by NAT0-backeu ueath squaus unuei
the bannei of the "Fiee Syiian Aimy." The los Anqeles Times iepoiteu in theii aiticle,
"Syiia Chiistians feai life aftei Assau," how Syiia's Chiistian community feais the
emeigence of what they uesciibe as "a new uictatoiship by the Sunni Nuslim
majoiity."
66
Shaikh's aiticle also ievealeu anothei tiuth with the claim that "opposition
leaueis insiue anu outsiue the countiy uo not have the iesouices to unite theii ianks
alone." Suiely, any opposition gioup that iepiesents the vast majoiity of the Syiian
people, as the uominant naiiative of the mainstieam meuia claims, woulu not have
tiouble finuing the iesouices insiue of Syiia "alone." Bespite Shaikh's insistence to
abanuon uiplomatic attempts to uefuse the situation in favoi of openly toppling
Assau, the uniest in Syiia has been unueniably uiiven by a foieign-backeu violent
minoiity anu caiiieu out by a combination of violent Sunni-extiemists fiom Syiia
anu many foieign fighteis biought in fiom abioau. Nany of Syiia's less acknowleugeu
opposition gioups, such as the National Cooiuination Committee, a coalition of left-
leaning political paities staunchly opposeu to foieign inteivention, who iepiesent
Syiia's inteinal opposition (as opposeu to the Istanbul-baseu Syiian National
Council), finu the "Fiee Syiian Aimy's" collaboiation with foieigneis "unacceptable.
67

By late Apiil 2u12, it became cleai that NAT0 anu its pioxies' effoits to topple the
Syiian goveinment weie failing, piimaiily because the movement's semi-coveit
foieign backing was still not enough to tuin the tiue. The Biookings Institution calleu
foi moie oveit backing of the Syiian opposition - not excluuing foieign militaiy
inteivention - while the mainstieam meuia continueu fiaming the violence as one-
siueu when, in ieality, the "Fiee Syiian Aimy" was conuucting a vicious campaign of
teiioiist violence, even attempting to attack a convoy consisting of Kofi Annan's 0N
monitois, leaving Syiian secuiity foices with no choice but to continue fighting to
iestoie oiuei.
68
Following the inciuent, Fiance inexplicably blameu the Syiian
goveinment foi not pioviuing auequate secuiity to the 0N monitois, aftei a yeai of
conuemning the goveinment foi attempting to iestoie oiuei in the face of the veiy
militant violence fiom which the attacks iesulteu. A conceiteu effoit was being maue
by outsiue foices to sabotage the 0N peace plan in eveiy shape, foim, anu mannei,
especially thiough incieaseu violence anu paiticulaily in cioss-boiuei inciuents to
help builu suppoit foi NAT0-backeu, Tuikey-leu incuisions into Syiia to caive out
"safe havens." Fiom theie, a steauy stieam of weapons anu fighteis fiom aiounu the
66 Syiia Chiistians feai life aftei Assau, Los Angeles Times, Naich 7, 2u12
67 "Fiee Syiian Aimy's" collaboiation with foieigneis, RIA Novosti, Apiil 26, 2u12
68 Bomb hits Syiian aimy tiuck escoiting 0N team, Al-}azeeia, Nay 1u, 2u12
woilu woulu be funneleu in, in an attempt to, as Biookings's Shaikh puts it, "stietch"
Syiia's foices to the bieaking point.
0N monitois weie continually taigeteu anu attackeu, naiiowly escaping ioausiue
bombs that continueu to iock Bamascus, as the opposition anu meuia again teameu
up to uisavow any iesponsibility. }ust as the iebels aumitteu to Reuters, the bombings
in Bamascus taigeteu a goveinment intelligence builuing, the veiy soit of taiget the
iebels claimeu they weie looking foi. The iuealistic comments maue to Reuters by
iebels of "only taigeting militaiy foices" fell flat, when Syiia's militaiy foices
attempteu to maintain oiuei in populateu civilian aieas. Bombs taigeting a militaiy
convoy oi a goveinment builuing aie just as likely to kill anu maim civilians, as they
aie goveinment tioops. This is why theie aie stiict, inteinationally-iecognizeu
piohibitions on using impioviseu explosives, booby-tiaps, anu cai bombs off the
battlefielu anu in populateu aieas - anu why people who ignoie such piohibitions aie
calleu "teiioiists." Reuters aumits that iebels aie "channeling" outsiue uonations into
"bettei mateiials" leauing to "moie sophisticateu bombs," anu that the iebels aie
fighting foi a cause "that has wiuespieau suppoit |amongj Sunni Aiab states anu the
West." What Reuters fails to mention is what suppoit, if any, the iebels have
uomestically, beyonu extiemist Sunnis, anu how that suppoit will be affecteu by
filling the stieets with foieign-funueu, inuisciiminate teiioi anu cainage.
In eaily Nay 2u12, the Pentagon itself aumitteu that Al Qaeua is piesent in Syiia
as iepoits suifaceu inuicating that foieign fighteis, weapons, anu cash weie flowing
ovei Syiia's boiueis, cieating an eiuption of violence in noithein Lebanon.
Inuigenous Lebanese factions faceu off against each othei along sectaiian uivisions,
with initial infoimation inuicating that extiemist gioups backeu by the 0S, Isiael, anu
Sauui Aiabia weie fighting factions connecteu to Bezbollah. Extiemist leaueis acioss
the attempteu to fiame the violence as "Sunni veises Shi'a," a ploy Bezbollah leauei
Bassan Nasiallah waineu against in 2uu7 as uocumenteu by jouinalist Seymoui
Beish:
Nosrollob occuseJ tbe Busb AJministrotion of workinq witb lsroel to Jeliberotely
instiqote ´fitno,´ on Arobic worJ tbot is useJ to meon insurrection onJ froqmentotion
witbin lslom. "ln my opinion, tbere is o buqe compoiqn tbrouqb tbe meJio tbrouqbout
tbe worlJ to put eocb siJe up oqoinst tbe otber," be soiJ. "l believe tbot oll tbis is beinq
run by Americon onJ lsroeli intelliqence." {Ee JiJ not proviJe ony specific eviJence for
tbis.) Ee soiJ tbot tbe 0.S. wor in lroq boJ increoseJ sectorion tensions, but orqueJ
tbot Eezbollob boJ trieJ to prevent tbem from spreoJinq into lebonon. {Sunni-Sbiite
confrontotions increoseJ, olonq witb violence, in tbe weeks ofter we tolkeJ.)
69
violence iageu in anu aiounu Lebanon's noithein poit city of Tiipoli. While being
uepicteu as chaos "spilling ovei" fiom Syiia (with both siues iuentifying as eithei
suppoiteis oi opponents of the neighboiing Syiian goveinment), it is cleai that the
violence theie was inuigenous, sectaiian in natuie, anu uiiectly ielateu to the laigei
conflict envisioneu by Bassan Nasiallah. This pievailing "sectaiian" aspect ieveals
what has been stateu by geopolitical analysts since the beginning of uniest in Syiia -
that the violence was uiiven not by "pio-uemociatic" aspiiations, but by sectaiian
violence exploiteu foi the sole puipose of auvancing the agenua of foieign meuuleis -
69 The Reuiiection, The New Yoikei, Naich S, 2uu7
sectaiian violence that has now manifesteu itself in attacks on Chiistians, Biuze, anu
Alawites, as well as moueiate Sunnis acioss Syiia in the miust of this so-calleu
"uemociatic ievolution."
By Nay 2u12, the involvement of the 0niteu States, Sauui Aiabia, Qatai, anu othei
uulf States in supplying weapons, cash, anu logistical suppoit to teiioiist foices in
Syiia was fuithei confiimeu by the Wosbinqton Post, in theii aiticle, "Syiian iebels
get influx of aims with gulf neighbois' money, 0.S. cooiuination." The Wosbinqton
Post not only aumitteu the involvement of foieign poweis piovoking uniest in Syiia,
but confiimeu the claims maue by Syiian Piesiuent Bashai al-Assau, that Syiia's
histoiically violent Nuslim Biotheihoou is also uiiectly aiming anu funuing
contingents of extiemists committing acts of teiioi acioss Syiia, paiticulaily in aieas
that hau been poitiayeu as centeis of "pio-uemociacy" piotests.
7u
These
"flashpoints", which hau been iackeu by violence uepicteu as "iepiession" by Syiian
tioops, weie now aumitteu by the Washington Post to be aieas wheie "mateiial is
being stockpileu." These incluueu the flashpoint city of Iulib on the Tuikish-Syiian
boiuei, in the subuibs of Bamascus, anu along Syiia's boiuei with Lebanon wheie
weapons, supplies, anu cash pioviueu by the 0S anu Sauui Aiabia weie useu to
peipetuate the incieaseu violence in Syiia in the miust of a ceasefiie the West has
attempteu to uisingenuously use to uefame the Syiian goveinment. In the miust of a
0N ceasefiie, the militant Syiian iebel foices continueu to uo eveiything possible to
hampei the goveinment's ability to iestoie oiuei, while continuing theii campaign
with new weapons, in anothei attempt at violent foieign-backeu iegime change in
aieas contiolleu by Syiia's Kuius - a gioup that hau laigely iemaineu out of the
pieuominately foieign-backeu conflict:
Tbe effect of tbe new orms oppeoreJ eviJent in HonJoy´s closb between opposition
onJ qovernment forces over control of tbe rebel-belJ city of Roston, neor Eoms. Tbe
Britoin-boseJ Syrion 0bservotory for Eumon Riqbts soiJ rebel forces wbo overron o
qovernment bose boJ killeJ 2S Syrion solJiers.
Paiauoxically, the 0S anu uulf states continueu funneling weapons anu othei
foims of mateiial suppoit to the Syiian iebels, even aftei the Pentagon aumitteu Al
Qaeua piesence in Syiia.
71
This came aftei teiioiist gioups claimeu iesponsibility foi
a seiies of bombings that have killeu mostly civilians. In the miust of an aumitteu
attempt to inciease violence anu chaos, the Wosbinqton Post also ueclaieu that
NAT0-membei Tuikey woulu be piessuieu to invoke Aiticle Iv of the NAT0 Chaitei,
allowing NAT0 to militaiily inteivene to "stop" violence that outsiue foices aie
openly cieuiteu with fomenting. 0nlike pievious conflicts, the 0S aumission is not a
whispeieu obfuscation of the theii intentions, but an open ueclaiation of intent to
piovoke a wai of aggiession - a Nuiembeig offense foi all involveu. Beie, we see
uiiect paiallels between Auolf Bitlei's Septembei 19S8 campaign of uestabilization
in Czechoslovakia, anu NAT0's attempts to uestabilize Syiia.
7u Syiian iebels get influx of aims with gulf neighbois' money, 0.S. cooiuination, The Washington Post, Nay 1S,
2u12
71 Al Qaeua's Wai foi Syiia, The Wall Stieet }ouinal, }uly 26, 2u12
The 0niteu Nations iemaineu inexplicably silent ovei ievelations that the 0niteu
States, Sauui Aiabia, anu othei uulf states, weie uiiectly iesponsible foi aiming
militants in Syiia in uiiect violation of a 0N-biokeieu ceasefiie. Auuitionally, the 0S
openly thieateneu to aim Kuiuish militants in Syiia to "iise up" against the
goveinment. While in ieality this constitutes a gieatei thieat to neighboiing Tuikey,
anu peihaps an attempt to motivate Ankaia to take a moie aggiessive stance against
Syiia, the thieat of puiposefully inciting moie violence in a conflict that has allegeuly
claimeu "2u,uuu lives", seems not only giossly iiiesponsible, but a violation of
inteinational peace.
72
As clashes bioke out in neighboiing Lebanon along the
Lebanese-Syiian boiuei, jouinalist Seymoui Beish exposeu a joint 0S-Isiaeli-Sauui
opeiation to cieate a violent Islamist-fiont anu uiiect it at Bezbollah in Lebanon,
Piesiuent Bashai al-Assau in Syiia, anu at the Iianian goveinment yeais eailiei.
Beish's 2uu7 aiticle "The Reuiiection," woulu iepoit the fact that these extiemist
elements, useu as pioxies by outsiue foices, hau uiiect ties to Al Qaeua, with many of
the militants having eithei paiticipateu in fighting 0S tioops in Iiaq anu Afghanistan,
oi affiliations with gioups that uiu:
ln 200S, occorJinq to o report by tbe 0.S.-boseJ lnternotionol Crisis 6roup, SooJ
Eoriri, tbe Sunni mojority leoJer of tbe lebonese porlioment onJ tbe son of tbe sloin
former Prime Hinister÷SooJ inberiteJ more tbon four billion Jollors ofter bis fotber´s
ossossinotion÷poiJ forty-eiqbt tbousonJ Jollors in boil for four members of on lslomic
militont qroup from Binniyeb. Tbe men boJ been orresteJ wbile tryinq to estoblisb on
lslomic mini-stote in nortbern lebonon. Tbe Crisis 6roup noteJ tbot mony of tbe
militonts boJ troineJ in ol-µoeJo comps in Afqboniston.
AccorJinq to tbe Crisis 6roup report, SooJ Eoriri loter useJ bis porliomentory
mojority to obtoin omnesty for twenty-two of tbe Binniyeb lslomists, os well os for
seven militonts suspecteJ of plottinq to bomb tbe ltolion onJ 0kroinion embossies in
Beirut, tbe previous yeor. {Ee olso orronqeJ o porJon for Somir 6eoqeo, o Horonite
Cbristion militio leoJer, wbo boJ been convicteJ of four politicol murJers, incluJinq tbe
ossossinotion, in 1987, of Prime Hinister RosbiJ Koromi.) Eoriri JescribeJ bis octions
to reporters os bumonitorion.
ln on interview in Beirut, o senior officiol in tbe Sinioro qovernment ocknowleJqeJ
tbot tbere were Sunni jiboJists operotinq insiJe lebonon. "We bove o liberol ottituJe
tbot ollows Al µoeJo types to bove o presence bere," be soiJ. Ee reloteJ tbis to concerns
tbot lron or Syrio miqbt JeciJe to turn lebonon into o "tbeotre of conflict."
Saau Baiiii, foimei piime ministei of Lebanon, is aumitteuly a co-conspiiatoi in
0S-Isiaeli-Sauui uesigns to uestabilize with militant extiemists anu violently
oveithiow the Syiian goveinment. While Baiiii feigns anti-Isiaeli sentiment anu
makes public calls foi Lebanese to iefiain fiom sectaiian violence, he was the
piimaiy facilitatoi of extiemists ciossing ovei into Syiia, anu theii cieating chaos in
the stieets of Lebanon. A 2u1u iepoit issueu by the Foitune Suu-funueu
Inteinational Ciisis uioup uesciibes in uetail Baiiii's ueep ties, anu inueeu
uepenuence, on the West.
7S
The iepoit also maue mention of extensive 0S funuing
72 Syiia ueath toll hits 2u,uuu: Nu0, Financial Review, }uly 29, 2u12
7S Lebanon's Politics: The Sunni Community anu Baiiii's Futuie Cuiient, Inteinational Ciisis uioup, Nay 26,
2u1u
behinu Baiiii's faction, then leu by Fouau Sinioia, augmenting the cieation of
militant foices:
Tbe 0niteJ Stotes bos olso qiven clonJestine support to tbe Sinioro qovernment,
occorJinq to tbe former senior intelliqence officiol onJ tbe 0.S. qovernment consultont.
"We ore in o proqrom to enbonce tbe Sunni copobility to resist Sbiite influence, onJ
we´re spreoJinq tbe money orounJ os mucb os we con," tbe former senior intelliqence
officiol soiJ. Tbe problem wos tbot sucb money ´olwoys qets in more pockets tbon you
tbink it will,´ be soiJ. "ln tbis process, we´re finoncinq o lot of boJ quys witb some
serious potentiol unintenJeJ consequences. We Jon´t bove tbe obility to Jetermine onJ
qet poy voucbers siqneJ by tbe people we like onJ ovoiJ tbe people we Jon´t like. lt´s o
very biqb-risk venture."
Americon, Furopeon, onJ Arob officiols l spoke to tolJ me tbot tbe Sinioro
qovernment onJ its ollies boJ olloweJ some oiJ to enJ up in tbe bonJs of emerqinq
Sunni roJicol qroups in nortbern lebonon, tbe Bekoo volley, onJ orounJ Polestinion
refuqee comps in tbe soutb. Tbese qroups, tbouqb smoll, ore seen os o buffer to
Eezbollob; ot tbe some time, tbeir iJeoloqicol ties ore witb Al µoeJo.
CNN iepoiteu that "anti-Assau cleiics" have been shot by Lebanese soluieis" anu,
just as was seen uuiing the assassination of Rafic Baiiii, uemagogues anu outsiue
foices attempteu to uiaw Sunni Nuslims into a conflict with Shi'as.
74
A stiategy of
tension was useu to uiviue the Lebanese people into a ueauly conflict miiioiing the
sectaiian, not "uemociacy," uiiven uniest iavaging Syiia. With Saau Baiiii, the 0S,
anu Sauui Aiabia oveitly woiking to unueimine Syiian stability, it appeais that all of
the uesigns uesciibeu by Seymoui Beish in 2uu7 weie now coming to fiuition.
Westein meuia's iepoitage of violence in Lebanon woulu cieate a uisingenuous
uepiction of it being "spilt ovei" fiom Syiia, meant to poitiay a geneial sense of
chaos consuming the iegion. In actuality, it is a piemeuitateu uestabilization
uepenuent on fosteiing violence between Sunni anu Shi'a Nuslims, just as was
puiposefully uone in Iiaq to balk an effective Sunni-Shi'a alliance that achieveu initial
success fighting a foieign occupation leu by the 0S staiting in 2uuS. Baiiii poitenus
that his alliance with the 0S, Isiael, anu the Sauuis is simply an attempt to piotect
"Sunnis" fiom a "Shi'a thieat." As empiies have uone all thioughout histoiy, Baiiii's
invitation fiom the West to meuule in his own nation's affaiis has openeu the uooi to
the uestiuction anu uismembeiment of not only his enemies, but inevitably his own
movement as well.
Bespite a cuiient 0N ceasefiie the West has continuously beiateu the Syiian
goveinment foi violating, iepoits issueu by coipoiate think tanks such as the
Biookings' Institute have continually calleu foi using the ceasefiie to ieoiganize anu
ieaim teiioiist pioxies. As a consequence of that policy, the next iounu of
uestiuctive violence in Syiia shook anu uistuibeu the woilu. 0n Nay 2S, 2u12, 1u8
people weie biutally muiueieu, incluuing S4 women anu 49 chiluien in two
opposition-contiolleu villages in the Boula uistiict, noithwest of Boms. The victims
showeu signs of being killeu at close iange, while many hau theii thioats slit anu
showeu signs of being executeu at point-blank iange. While the Syiian goveinment
74 Soluieis shoot anti-Assau cleiics in Lebanon, tiiggeiing fiesh violence, CNN, Nay 21, 2u12
iepoiteu that al-Qaeua teiioiist gioups weie iesponsible foi the killings in an
attempt to subveit the peace plan, 0N investigatois pioposeu that goveinment-hiieu
Alawite militias known as "Shabiha" weie iesponsible foi the killing.
Initial iepoits issueu by Westein meuia oiganizations hau claimeu that Syiian
goveinment shelling was iesponsible foi the 9u "confiimeu" ueaths by 0N monitois
who latei aiiiveu on the scene. Bowevei, conflicting iepoits fiom acioss uulf State
meuia claim the ueaths, paiticulaily those of chiluien, weie causeu by "knives" anu
othei shoit-iange weapons. Images bioaucasteu by both the opposition anu the
Syiian goveinment's SANA News netwoik showeu slain families laying ueau within
intact stiuctuies, the iesult of a combination of biutality incluuing close iange small
aims fiie anu blaueu weapons as claimeu by uulf State netwoiks.
7S
SANA News
aigues that teiioiist gioups committeu the atiocities, as it consistently maintaineu
thioughout the uuiation of the uniest. The West anu its allies howevei, have
piesenteu conflicting, anu evei-shifting naiiatives to obfuscate the incieasingly
uepiaveu atiocities committeu by theii own pioxy iebel foices. Foimei Biitish
intelligence officei Alastaii Ciooke commenteu on the natuie of the attacks, anu how
they weie not chaiacteiistic of the cultuial iegion to which Syiia belongs, suggesting
that the massacie hau its tactical anu iueological ioots in the Iiaq wai:
Tbis type of killinq, bebeoJinqs, slittinq of tbroots {of cbilJren too), onJ of tbis
mutilotion of boJies, bos been o cborocteristic not of levontine lslom, not of Syrio, not
of lebonon, but wbot boppeneJ in tbe Anbor province of lroq. AnJ so it seems to point
very mucb in tbe Jirection of qroups tbot bove been ossocioteJ witb tbe wor in lroq
oqoinst tbe 0niteJ Stotes wbo bove perbops returneJ to Syrio, or perbops lroqis wbo
bove come up from Anbor to toke port in it. l tbink tbe ottock is more close to Husob ol-
Zorqowi [wbo JecloreJ on oll out wor on Sbio in lroq], tbon ol-µoeJo os we know it, in
tbe sense tbot Zorqowi onJ lroq qove birtb to tbis very stronq, biqoteJ, onti-Sbio, onti-
lronion rbetoric. Hucb of tbot come into Syrio wben fiqbters from Anbor returneJ to
tbeir bomes orounJ Eoms onJ Eomo. So yes, we´re tolkinq obout ol-µoeJo like qroups
tbot ore ot tbe very enJ of tbe spectrum of tbe opposition. Tbey moy be o minority in
terms of tbe numbers of tbe overoll opposition, but tbey ore Jefininq tbe wor.
76
Befoie 0N monitois even aiiiveu in Boula, the 0S, 0K, anu Fiance weie alieauy
calling foi the "inteinational community" to move against the Syiian goveinment.
Westein mainstieam meuia souices iepoiteu that militant extiemists, mateiial
assistance anu high-enu weapons hau been fieely flowing foi months in the Boula
iegion, close to the neaiby Lebanese boiuei. Fiench Foieign Ninistei Lauient Fabius
uigeu foi moie suppoit to be given to the Syiian opposition, who weie now long
exposeu as employing teiioiist tactics, incluuing inuisciiminate bombings anu,
accoiuing to both the 0N anu Eumon Riqbts Wotcb, the kiunapping, toituie, anu
muiuei of civilians.
77
Almost immeuiately aftei 0N monitois aiiiveu in Boula, Syiia,
7S New Nassacies by al-Qaeua-linkeu Teiioiist uioups against Families in al-Shumaiiyeh anu Taluo in Boms
Countiysiue, SANA News, Nay 26, 2u12
76 Pointblank massacie: Nassive fallout fiom Boula killings, Russia Touay, Nay 29, 2u12
77 Fiance, 0.K. 0ige Suppoit foi Syiian 0pposition, Bloombeig, Nay 26, 2u12
the so-calleu "Fiee Syiian Aimy" officially ueclaieu that it woulu abanuon the 0N
peace plan, as pieuicteu by Westein think-tanks such as the Biookings Institution,
who calleu foi the enuing of the 0N "ceasefiie" anu the iecommencing of violence to
oveithiow the Syiian goveinment. 0K Foieign 0ffice ministei Alistaii Buit woulu
state:
We ore oppolleJ ot wbot oppeors to be creJible reports tbot tbe Syrion reqime bos
been responsible for tbe Jeotbs of 92 civilions in Eoulo, incluJinq S2 cbilJren. Tbe 0N
EeoJ of Hission bos been oble to confirm tbe numbers onJ olso tbot ortillery tonk
sbells bove been useJ. lf tbis is tbe cose tben it´s on oct of pure, nokeJ sovoqery onJ we
conJemn it in tbe most stronqest possible terms.
78
Events in Boula leau Westein states to expel Syiian uiplomats anu on }une 1st, the
0niteu Nations Buman Rights Council voteu to conuemn Syiia, calling foi an
inteinational ciiminal inquiiy into the events. Westein meuia has laigely ielieu on
unconfiimeu opposition accounts cieuiting Shabiha pio-goveinment Alawite militias
with caiiying out massacies acioss Syiia as a iesult of the Assau goveinment
"biainwashing the militia into believing the Sunni majoiity was theii enemy," as
iepoiteu by The Telegiaph In eaily }une.
79
Buiing a speech in the Syiian pailiament,
Assau calleu the attacks in Boula "abominable," stating:
Tbis crisis is not on internol crisis. lt is on externol wor corrieJ out by internol
elements, if we work toqetber; l confirm tbot tbe enJ to tbis situotion is neor. Wbot
boppeneJ in Eoulo... onJ wbot we JescribeJ os uqly onJ obominoble mossocres, or true
monstrosities - even monsters Jo not perpetrote wbot we bove seen. We ore not focinq
o politicol problem becouse if we were, tbis porty woulJ put fortb o politicol proqrom.
Wbot we ore focinq is on ottempt to sow sectorion strife onJ tbe tool of tbis is
terrorism, tbe issue is terrorism. We ore focinq o reol wor woqeJ from tbe outsiJe, onJ
will continue firmly confrontinq terrorism, leovinq tbe Joor open for tbose wbo wont to
return. l urqe tbose wbo ore still besitont to Jo so, to toke tbis step. Tbe stote will not
toke revenqe.
8u
Rainei Beimann, a Niuule East coiiesponuent of the ueiman newspapei
Ironkfurter Allqemeine Zeitunq publisheu an alteinative account of the events in
Boula, alleging that extiemist anti-Assau Sunni militants caiiieu out the massacie,
taigeting pio-goveinment Alawi anu Shia minoiities stating:
After IriJoy proyers on Hoy 2S more tbon 700 qunmen orqonizeJ in tbree qroups
unJer tbe leoJersbip of AbJurrozzoq Tloss onJ Yobyo Yusuf, cominq from Roston, Kofr
lobo onJ Akrobo, onJ ottockeJ tbree ormy cbeckpoints neor TolJou. Tbe rebels, wbo
were superior in numbers, onJ tbe {mostly olso Sunni) solJiers fouqbt o blooJy bottle
in wbicb two Jozen solJiers, most of tbem conscripts, were killeJ. Burinq onJ ofter tbe
fiqbtinq, rebels supporteJ by resiJents of TolJou wipeJ out tbe entire fomilies of SoyyiJ
onJ AbJorrozzoq. Tbey boJ refuseJ to join tbe opposition. Tbose killeJ were olmost
78 0K conuemns 'puie nakeu savageiy' of Boula killings, The Telegiaph, Nay 27, 2u12
79 The Shabiha: Insiue Assau's ueath squaus, The Telegiaph, }une u2, 2u12
8u Assau says Boula killings monstious, sees enu to ciisis, Reuteis, }une S, 2u12
exclusively from fomilies belonqinq to Eoulo´s Alowi onJ Sbio minorities. 0ver 90% of
Eoulo´s populotion is Sunni. Severol Jozen members of o fomily were slouqbtereJ,
wbicb boJ converteJ from Sunni to Sbio lslom. Hembers of tbe Sbomoliyo, on Alowi
fomily, were olso killeJ, os wos tbe fomily of o Sunni member of tbe Syrion porlioment
wbo is reqorJeJ os o colloborotor. lmmeJiotely followinq tbe mossocre, tbe
perpetrotors ore supposeJ to bove filmeJ tbeir victims onJ tben presenteJ tbem os
Sunni victims in viJeos posteJ on tbe internet.
81
The iepoit issueu by Ironkfurter Allqemeine Zeitunq is entiiely plausible,
consiueiing that the Eumon Riqbts Wotcb iepoit on Syiia's opposition uocumenteu
the outstanuing cases of violence conuucteu laigely on sectaiian giounus, motivateu
by anti-Shi'a anu anti-Alawite sentiments, with citeu abuses committeu by militant
Salafist gioups anu membeis of the opposition Fiee Syiian Aimy. Although 0N
obseiveis aumitteu they weie unable to ueteimine the peipetiatois of the Boula
massacie with no fiim eviuence to inculpate the Syiian goveinment, 0N chief Ban Ki-
moon ueclaieu that the Assau goveinment hau lost its legitimacy, channeling calls by
Piesiuent Baiak 0bama, 0S Secietaiy of State Billaiy Clinton anu Biitish Piime
Ninistei Baviu Cameion foi Assau to step uown. Westein nations continueu moving
aheau with theii calls foi "action" against the Assau iegime anu continueu to
conuemn the Syiian goveinment, which accoiuing to the activists they aie allegeuly
citing, weie not even iesponsible foi the massacie. In late }uly 2u12, iepoits issueu
by the ueiman Feueial Intelligence Seivice (BNB) confiimeu that al Qaeua has
caiiieu out "about 9u teiioiist attacks" in Syiia between late Becembei 2u11 anu
eaily }uly 2u12, incluuing involvement in the Nay 2Sth Boula massacie.
82
Repoits of
killings weie fiameu to fit a pie-ueteimineu conclusion, in line with the foieign
policy objectives of Westein capitals by implicating the Assau iegime in
oichestiating violence in oiuei to builu populai suppoit foi aggiessively toppling the
Syiian goveinment.
Russian Foieign Ninistei Seigey Laviov has iecently accuseu exteinal foices of
inciting violence by pioviuing aims anu mateiial assistance to militant opposition
foices, stating, "They want the inteinational community to be filleu with inuignation
anu stait a full-blown inteivention in Syiia."
8S
Following the killings, 0S Tieasuiy
Secietaiy Timothy ueithnei calleu on the woilu to exeit "maximum financial
piessuie" on Assau's goveinment thiough stiong sanctions that "can help hasten the
uay the Assau iegime ielinquishes powei," while assuiing that the 0S woulu suppoit
the use of foice against Syiia as authoiizeu unuei Chaptei 7 of the 0niteu Nations
chaitei.
84
0ne can only imagine the inteinational outciy shoulu the Syiian
81 Abeimals Nassakei in Syiien, Fiankfuitei Allgemeine Zeitung, }une u7, 2u12
82 ueiman intel.: Qaeua behinu teiioi in Syiia, PiessTv, }uly 26, 2u12
8S Annan plan 'only chance foi peace' but stalleu by inteivention suppoiteis - Laviov, Russia Touay, }une u9,
2u12
84 ueithnei wains Syiia of 0N action, as Clinton heaus to Istanbul to talk stiategy with allies, S7u News, }une
u6, 2u12
goveinment have ueclaieu it was abanuoning the 0N-biokeieu "cease-fiie" anu
iesolveu to uealing with its opponents in the "only language they unueistanu,
violence" - as stateu by iepiesentatives of the Fiee Syiian Aimy. Bowevei, the Syiian
goveinment uiu not abanuon the ceasefiie, anu woulu continue to host hunuieus of
0N monitois. Insteau, it was the opposition making such claims - claims that woulu
continually go unchallengeu by the so-calleu "inteinational community."
The events of Boula coulu be compaieu to what unfolueu in the summei of 19S9,
when the Nazi foices, eagei to poitiay themselves as hapless victims to justify acts of
militaiy aggiession, stageu a boiuei inciuent intenueu to falsely implicate
neighboiing Polanu. Aftei staging boiuei inciuents involving ueiman tioops
attacking theii own iauio station to fiame Polanu foi unwaiianteu aggiession, Bitlei
oiueieu the Nazi invasion of Polanu. Iionically enough, it is the 0niteu States' own
Bolocaust Nemoiial Nuseum that not only gives us an account of these events, but
an entiie lesson iegaiuing "Beceiving the Public:"
Tbrouqbout tbe SeconJ WorlJ Wor, Nozi propoqonJists JisquiseJ militory
oqqression oimeJ ot territoriol conquest os riqbteous onJ necessory octs of self-
Jefense. Tbey cost 6ermony os o victim or potentiol victim of foreiqn oqqressors, os o
peoce-lovinq notion forceJ to toke up orms to protect its populoce or JefenJ Furopeon
civilizotion oqoinst Communism. Tbe wor oims professeJ ot eocb stoqe of tbe bostilities
olmost olwoys JisquiseJ octuol Nozi intentions of territoriol exponsion onJ rociol
worfore. Tbis wos propoqonJo of Jeception, JesiqneJ to fool or misJirect tbe
populotions in 6ermony, 6ermon-occupieJ lonJs, onJ tbe neutrol countries.
ln summer of 19S9, os Eitler onJ bis oiJes finolizeJ plons for tbe invosion of PolonJ,
tbe public mooJ in 6ermony wos tense onJ feorful. 6ermons were embolJeneJ by tbe
recent Jromotic extension of 6ermony´s borJers into neiqbborinq Austrio onJ
Czecboslovokio witbout bovinq fireJ o sbot; but tbey JiJ not line tbe streets collinq for
wor, os tbe qenerotion of 1914 boJ Jone. Before tbe 6ermon ottock on PolonJ on
September 1, 19S9, tbe Nozi reqime louncbeJ on oqqressive meJio compoiqn to builJ
public support for o wor tbot few 6ermons JesireJ. To present tbe invosion os o
morolly justifioble, Jefensive oction, tbe 6ermon press ployeJ up "Polisb otrocities,"
referrinq to reol or olleqeJ Jiscriminotion onJ pbysicol violence JirecteJ oqoinst etbnic
6ermons resiJinq in PolonJ. Beplorinq Polisb ´wormonqerinq´ onJ ´cbouvinism,´ tbe
press olso ottockeJ tbe Britisb for encouroqinq wor by promisinq to JefenJ PolonJ in
tbe event of 6ermon invosion.
Tbe Nozi reqime even stoqeJ o borJer inciJent JesiqneJ to moke it oppeor tbot
PolonJ initioteJ bostilities witb 6ermony. 0n Auqust S1, 19S9, SS men JresseJ in Polisb
ormy uniforms ´ottockeJ´ o 6ermon roJio stotion ot 6leiwitz {6liwice). Tbe next Joy,
Eitler onnounceJ to tbe 6ermon notion onJ tbe worlJ bis Jecision to senJ troops into
PolonJ in response to Polisb ´incursions´ into tbe Reicb. Tbe Nozi Porty Reicb Press
0ffice instructeJ tbe press to ovoiJ tbe use of tbe worJ ´wor´. Tbey were to report tbot
6ermon troops boJ simply beoten bock Polisb ottocks, o toctic JesiqneJ to Jefine
6ermony os tbe victim of oqqression. Tbe onus of responsibility for Jeclorinq wor
woulJ be left to tbe Britisb onJ Irencb.
8S
8S Beceiving the Public, 0niteu States Bolocaust Nemoiial Nuseum, Nay 11, 2u11
Fiom venezuela to Thailanu, Westein-backeu opposition gioups have histoiically
been founu to tiiggei uniest, anu use it as covei to assassinate civilians anu
membeis of theii own movements, only to then blame it on the taigeteu goveinment
in oiuei to exaceibate the conflict until a ciitical mass is ieacheu anu that
goveinment is toppleu. The Boula massacie shaies iuentical chaiacteiistics with
othei engineeieu atiocities aiounu the woilu, simply on a laigei scale, involving
militants most likely not affiliateu with local FSA fighteis oi the Syiian goveinment,
but foieign elements just as the Syiian goveinment has claimeu.
In a uistuibing pieluue to the sectaiian extiemism sown in Syiia, }ouinalist Tiish
Schuh woulu inteiview Ziau Abuel Noui, in 2uuS. Noui, a coipoiate-financiei anu
founuei of "Blackhawk Paitneis" as well as chaiiman of the Neo-Conseivative iun
"0niteu States Committee foi a Fiee Lebanon," has consoiteu with fellow committee
membeis incluuing Noiiis Amitay of the }ewish Institute foi National Secuiity
Affaiis, Nichael Rubin of the Ameiican Enteipiise Institute, anu PNAC signatoiies
Paula Bobiiansky, }ames Woolsey, Fiank uaffney, anu Baniel Pipes, foi yeais to
foment the veiy bloousheu, instability anu atiocities that have unfolueu in Syiia:
Botb tbe Syrion onJ lebonese reqimes will be cbonqeJ- wbetber tbey like it or not-
wbetber it´s qoinq to be o militory coup or sometbinq else. onJ we ore workinq on it.
We know olreoJy exoctly wbo´s qoinq to be tbe replocements. We´re workinq on it witb
tbe Busb oJministrotion.
Tbese quys wbo come to power, wbo rule by power, con only be removeJ by power.
Tbis is Hocbiovelli´s power qome. Tbot´s bow it is. Tbis is bow qeopolitics ÷ tbe wor
qomes, power qomes ÷ work. l know insiJe out bow it works, becouse l come from o
fomily of politicions for tbe lost 60 yeors. look, l bove occess to tbe top clossifieJ
informotion from tbe ClA from oll over tbe worlJ. Tbey coll me, l oJvise tbem. l know
exoctly wbot´s qoinq on. AnJ tbis will boppen.
Tbis Bosbor Al AssoJ-Fmil lobouJ reqime is qoinq to qo wbetber it´s true or not.
Wben we went to lroq wbetber tbere were weopons of moss Jestruction or not, tbe key
is ÷ we won. AnJ SoJJom is out! Wbotever we wont, will boppen. lron? We will not let
lron become o nucleor power. We´ll finJ o woy; we´ll finJ on excuse - to qet riJ of lron.
AnJ l Jon´t core wbot tbe excuse is. Tbere is no room for roque stotes in tbe worlJ.
Wbetber we lie obout it, or invent sometbinq, or we Jon´t. l Jon´t core. Tbe enJ
justifies tbe meons. Wbot´s riqbt? Hiqbt is riqbt, miqbt is riqbt. Tbot´s it. Hiqbt is riqbt.
So SoJJom wonteJ to prove to tbe wbole worlJ be wos stronq? Well, we´re stronqer-
be´s out! Ee´s finisbeJ. AnJ lron´s qoinq to be finisbeJ onJ every sinqle Arob reqime
tbot´s like tbis will be finisbeJ. Becouse tbere is no room for us copitolists onJ multi-
notionolists in tbe worlJ to operote witb reqimes like tbis. lt´s oll obout money. AnJ
power. AnJ weoltb. onJ Jemocrocy bos to be spreoJ orounJ tbe worlJ. Tbose wbo
wont to espouse qlobolizotion ore qoinq to moke o lot of money, be boppy, tbeir
fomilies will be boppy. AnJ tbose wbo oren´t qoinq to ploy tbis qome ore qoinq to be
crusbeJ, wbetber tbey like it or not!
86
Schuh's inteiview with Abuel Noui piofiles a ciiminal minu not only
psychologically anu opeiationally capable of engineeiing an event such as the Boula
86 Faking the Case Against Syiia, Counteipunch, Novembei 18, 2uuS
massacie, but a minu who possesseu the intent anu motive to uo so. Noui's
uistuibing uisplay of megalomania uovetails with the New Yorker's 2uu7 aiticle, "The
Reuiiection," wiitten by jouinalist Seymoui Beish, which uocuments how the 0niteu
States, Isiael, anu Sauui Aiabia, along with Abuel Noui's Baiiii faction in Lebanon,
weie piepaiing a iegional aimy of sectaiian extiemists to uestabilize the Shi'a-leu
authoiities & auministiations of the Niuule East. Beish's iepoit incluueu an
inteiview with foimei-CIA agent Robeit Baei in Lebanon who waineu of the neeu to
piotect Chiistians fiom a pieuictable onslaught by 0S-Isiaeli-Sauui-backeu sectaiian
extiemists - an onslaught that woulu play out against Syiia's 1u peicent Chiistian
population. Not only uiu 0S, Isiaeli, anu Sauui conspiiatois puiposely unleash
sectaiian extiemists insiue of Syiia - they uiu so with the full knowleuge that
atiocities like the one in Boula, Syiia woulu inevitably iesult.
Foi uecaues, eveiy nation acioss the Aiab Woilu, fiom Algeiia to Noiocco, Egypt
to Syiia, have fought against sectaiian extiemists fiom oiganizations like the Nuslim
Biotheihoou anu Al Qaeua. Algeiia, foi example, fought aiuuously against violent
extiemists attempting to oveiiun theii seculai society anu taiget ethnic anu
ieligious minoiities incluuing Chiistians anu even Sunni moueiates - this peiiou has
come to be iefeiieu to as the "lost" oi "black uecaue." Algeiia faceu amongst otheis,
Al Qaeua in the Islamic Naghieb (AQIN), a 0S State Bepaitment-listeu teiioiist
oiganization linkeu uiiectly to neighboiing Libya's "Libyan Islamic Fighting uioup"
(LIFu) which was aimeu, tiaineu, funueu, anu politically backeu by NAT0 to oveiiun
Nuammai uauuafi. In both Egypt anu Syiia, it was the Nuslim Biotheihoou that hau
attempteu to oveiiun seculai goveinments with violence, miiioiing exactly what has
unfolueu uuiing the Syiian upiising. Touay, the Westein piess ueciies Egyptian anu
Syiian effoits to hem in these sectaiian extiemists, paiticulaily in Syiia wheie the
goveinment is accuseu of "massaciing" aimeu Biotheihoou militants in Bama in
1982. The constitutions of seculai Aiab nations acioss Noithein Afiica anu the
Niuule East, incluuing the newly iewiitten Syiian Constitution, have attempteu to
excluue sectaiian political paities, especially those with "iegional" affiliations to
pievent the Nuslim Biotheihoou anu Al Qaeua affiliateu political movements fiom
evei coming back to powei.
87

The Syiian iefeienuum foi its new constitution, as well as elections helu unuei
this new constitution, woulu be boycotteu by the so-calleu "Fiee Syiian Aimy" anu
its political wing, specifically because they aie sectaiian extiemists with iegional
affiliations. The West woulu back these boycotts, calling the Syiian iefoims
"laughable." Since at least 2uu7, the West, paiticulaily the 0S, along with Isiael anu
Sauui Aiabia, attempteu to builu up both the Nuslim Biotheihoou anu smallei,
aimeu extiemist gioups with uiiect ties to Al Qaeua, in oiuei to uiiectly taiget
Lebanon, Syiia, anu Iian. Begun unuei the Bush auministiation anu continuing
seamlessly unuei 0bama, the Nuslim Biotheihoou was alieauy uesciibeu as being
backeu by the 0S anu Isiael, who weie funneling suppoit thiough the Sauuis so as to
not compiomise the "cieuibility" of the so-calleu "Islamic" movement. }ouinalist
Seymoui Beish iepoiteu that membeis of the Lebanese Saau Baiiii clique, then leu
by Fouau Sinioia, hau been the go-between foi 0S planneis anu the Syiian Nuslim
Biotheihoou. Beish iepoiteu that a suppoitei of the Lebanese Baiiii faction hau met
87 Syiian elections bianueu 'a sham,' BBC, Nay u4, 2u12
Bick Cheney in Washington anu ielayeu peisonally the impoitance of using the
Nuslim Biotheihoou in Syiia in any move against the iuling goveinment:
[WoliJ] }umblott tben tolJ me tbot be boJ met witb vice-PresiJent Cbeney in
Wosbinqton lost foll to Jiscuss, omonq otber issues, tbe possibility of unJermininq
AssoJ. Ee onJ bis colleoques oJviseJ Cbeney tbot, if tbe 0niteJ Stotes Joes try to move
oqoinst Syrio, members of tbe Syrion Huslim BrotberbooJ woulJ be "tbe ones to tolk
to," }umblott soiJ.
Tbere is eviJence tbot tbe AJministrotion´s reJirection stroteqy bos olreoJy
benefitteJ tbe BrotberbooJ. Tbe Syrion Notionol Solvotion Iront is o coolition of
opposition qroups wbose principol members ore o foction leJ by AbJul Eolim
KboJJom, o former Syrion vice-PresiJent wbo JefecteJ in 200S, onJ tbe BrotberbooJ.
A former biqb-ronkinq C.l.A. officer tolJ me, "Tbe Americons bove proviJeJ botb
politicol onJ finonciol support. Tbe SouJis ore tokinq tbe leoJ witb finonciol support,
but tbere is Americon involvement." Ee soiJ tbot KboJJom, wbo now lives in Poris, wos
qettinq money from SouJi Arobio, witb tbe knowleJqe of tbe Wbite Eouse. {ln 200S, o
Jeleqotion of tbe Iront´s members met witb officiols from tbe Notionol Security
Council, occorJinq to press reports.) A former Wbite Eouse officiol tolJ me tbot tbe
SouJis boJ proviJeJ members of tbe Iront witb trovel Jocuments.
In Nay 2u12, outlets such as Reuters iepoiteu that the Syiian aim of the Nuslim
Biotheihoou has been leauing the 0S, Isiaeli, anu Sauui-backeu sectaiian violence
that has been iavaging Syiia foi ovei a yeai:
Workinq quietly, tbe BrotberbooJ bos been finoncinq Iree Syrion Army Jefectors
boseJ in Turkey onJ cbonnelinq money onJ supplies to Syrio, revivinq tbeir bose
omonq smoll Sunni formers onJ miJJle closs Syrions, opposition sources soy.
88
A }une Sth 2u12 Bloomberq op-eu titleu, "Annan Shoulu Talk to Putin, Not Assau,
to Fix Syiia," attempteu to inuict Noscow anu Beijing in shaiing the blame foi the
cainage seen in the Boula Nassacie. The aiticle conceueu that the violence in Syiia is
sectaiian.
89
The woius "uemociacy" anu "fieeuom," that hau been uisingenuously
useu since the beginning of the "Aiab Spiing," woulu be uioppeu altogethei as the
Westein piess thiew its full weight behinu the long-planneu sectaiian wai that the
0S, Isiael, anu Sauui Aiabia have been cultivating foi yeais:
Wbot Eoulo inJicotes is tbot tbe sectorion civil wor between Syrio´s Sunnis onJ
Alowites tbot tbe worlJ boJ lonq feoreJ bos bequn. AssoJ´s cloim in o speecb }une S
tbot terrorists conJucteJ tbe slouqbter of fellow Sunnis to creote on internotionol
outcry is louqboble. Any eviJence tbere is suqqests tbot tbe Alowite Sbobibo militio,
workinq in tonJem witb tbe qovernment militory, wos responsible.
While some membeis of the Syiian goveinment's secuiity foices may have useu
excessive foice when battling opposition fighteis in iesiuential neighboihoous,
leauing to unintenueu civilian ueaths, it is unuei the goveinment of Bashai al-Assau
that Syiia's laige populations of ethnic anu ieligious minoiities, paiticulaily Shi'a
Nuslims, moueiate Sunnis, Chiistians, anu Biuze have been piotecteu fiom sectaiian
88 Syiia's Nuslim Biotheihoou iise fiom the ashes, Reuteis, Nay u6, 2u12
89 Annan Shoulu Talk to Putin, Not Assau, to Fix Syiia, Bloombeig, }une u4, 2u12
onslaught peipetuateu by extiemists anu iebel fighteis cultivateu by the West.
}ouinalist Seymoui Beish's 2uu7 aiticle "The Reuiiection," woulu foieshauow the
veiy "sectaiian civil wai" that Bloomberq openly insinuateu:
Robert Boer, o former lonqtime C.l.A. oqent in lebonon, bos been o severe critic of
Eezbollob onJ bos worneJ of its links to lronion-sponsoreJ terrorism. But now, be tolJ
me, "we´ve qot Sunni Arobs preporinq for cotoclysmic conflict, onJ we will neeJ
someboJy to protect tbe Cbristions in lebonon. lt useJ to be tbe Irencb onJ tbe 0niteJ
Stotes wbo woulJ Jo it, onJ now it´s qoinq to be Nosrollob onJ tbe Sbiites."
Bloomberq concluueu that Russia must withuiaw suppoit foi the Syiian
goveinment, which has uemonstiably woikeu to piotect both Syiia's seculai society
as well as its vast populations of ethnic anu ieligious minoiities, in oiuei to aveit
fuithei bloousheu. Cleaily, just as Russia withuiew suppoit fiom the uauuafi iegime
in Libya unuei foimei Piesiuent Bmitiy Neuveuev, Russia's withuiawal of suppoit
fiom the Syiian goveinment unuei Piesiuent vlauimii Putin woulu not maik the enu
of violence. Insteau, it woulu meiely maik the enu of contesteu violence anu the
beginning of uncheckeu lawlessness, atiocities anu wiuespieau killing by sectaiian
extiemists flush with Westein cash, weapons, anu political suppoit.
In eaily }une 2u12, membeis of Syiia's Chiistian community began accusing the
Fiee Syiian Aimy of waging a sectaiian wai on Syiia's ieligious minoiities. Aqenzio
IiJes, an online infoimation seivice foi Inteinational Pontifical Nission Societies
woulu accuiately coiioboiate events on the giounu by iepoiting the testimony of
Syiia-baseu Fiench Bishop Philip Touinyol Clos, stating:
Tbe picture for us is utter Jesolotion: tbe cburcb of Hor Flion is bolf JestroyeJ onJ
tbot of 0ur loJy of Peoce is still occupieJ by tbe rebels. Cbristion bomes ore severely
JomoqeJ Jue to tbe fiqbtinq onJ completely emptieJ of tbeir inbobitonts, wbo fleJ
witbout tokinq onytbinq. Tbe oreo of EomiJieb is still sbelter to ormeJ qroups
inJepenJent of eocb otber, beovily ormeJ onJ bonkrolleJ by µotor onJ SouJi Arobio.
All Cbristions {1S8,000) bove fleJ to Bomoscus onJ lebonon, wbile otbers took refuqe
in tbe surrounJinq countrysiJe. Tbe enemies of Syrio bove enlisteJ some of tbe Huslim
BrotberbooJ in orJer to Jestroy tbe brotberly relotions tbot troJitionolly existeJ
between Huslims onJ Cbristions: Yet, to Jote, tbey ore not oble to: tbey bove provokeJ
o controry reoction onJ tbe two communities ore more uniteJ tbon before. Tbe Syrion
solJiers in foct, continue to foce foreiqn fiqbters, mercenories libyons, lebonese
militonts from tbe 6ulf, Afqbons, Turks.
9u
0n }une 7th 2u12, 0S Ambassauoi to the 0N Susan Rice ueclaieu that the West
was piepaieu to "take actions outsiue of the Annan plan anu the authoiity of this |0N
secuiityj council," to implement iegime change in Syiia in iesponse to the Boula
massacie.
91
Russian Foieign Ninistei Seigey Laviov iepeateu that his nation opposes
any attempt to inteivene oi level sanctions against Syiia, accusing the West of
puiposefully peipetuating violence in oiuei to sabotage peace effoits anu cieate a
9u The uesolation of Boms anu the wai of infoimation ": the woius of a gieek-catholic Aichimanuiite, Agenzia
Fiues, }une u4, 2u12
91 0S ieauy to act on Syiia outsiue 0N. Russia Touay, Nay S1, 2u12
pietense foi NAT0-enfoiceu iegime change Laviov waineu that "the way the Syiian
ciisis is iesolveu will play an impoitant iole in the woilu tomoiiow; whethei the
woilu will be baseu on the 0N chaitei, oi a place wheie might makes iight." Laviov's
sentiments weie echoeu by China, Iian, anu South Ameiica's ALBA nations, whose
collective populations equate to ovei 1.S billion people. Laviov woulu make
statements uuiing a live piess confeience, focusing on eviuence contiauicting the
politically motivateu coveiage of Syiia's conflict by the Westein meuia. Laviov
elaboiateu Russia's stance by saying it woulu accept Syiian Piesiuent Bashai al-
Assau stepping uown if, anu only if, unconuitional negotiations began, anu both siues
coulu come to an agieement inuepenuent of foieign influence.
0n }une 1uth, 2u12, Russio ToJoy issueu a iepoit titleu, "Syiian iebels aim to use
chemical weapons, blame Bamascus," waining of a possible plot being fomenteu by
Syiian iebels insiue NAT0 membei Tuikey.
92
The plot involves Syiian iebels
ueploying chemical weapons obtaineu in Libya against Syiian civilians, then blaming
the Syiian goveinment foi the mass casualty event. This, of couise, woulu pioviue
the West the "casus belli" it has been seaiching foi to ciicumvent the 0N Secuiity
Council anu implement its long-planneu campaign of iegime change. As a
consequence of NAT0's opeiation in Libya, much of uauuafi's aisenal of militaiy
weaponiy hau iepoiteuly fallen into the hanus of iebel fighteis. Since then, Libya's
militants, leu by commanueis of Al Qaeua's Libyan Islamic Fighting uioup (LIFu),
have aimeu sectaiian extiemists acioss the Aiab Woilu, fiom as fai West as Nali, to
as fai East as Syiia. Auuitionally, as a iesult of NAT0's inteivention in Libya, the
scatteieu militaiy's extensive aisenal of anti-aiiciaft missiles has also fallen into the
hanus of Libyan militants, to then be piolifeiateu thioughout LIFu's netwoik of
affiliates - all of which aie sectaiian extiemists, many with uiiect ties to Al Qaeua.
The Wosbinqton Post in theii aiticle, "Libyan missiles on the loose," iepoiteu:
Two former ClA counterterrorism officers tolJ me lost week tbot tecbnicions
recently refurbisbeJ 800 of tbese mon-portoble oir-Jefense systems {known os
HANPABS) ÷ some for on Africon jiboJist qroup colleJ Boko Eorom tbot is often seen
os on olly of ol-µoeJo ÷ for possible use oqoinst commerciol jets flyinq into Niqer,
CboJ onJ perbops Niqerio.
9S
Noie than any othei nation, the 0niteu States has been auept at ueploying
nucleai, biological, anu chemical weapons of mass uestiuction against theii enemies
- fiom nucleai bombs upon }apan, to uepleteu uianium anu white phosphoius upon
Iiaq, to Agent 0iange all acioss vietnam. It stanus to ieason then, that these
weapons woulu eventually enu up in the hanus of the theii pioxies as well. Foi an
opposition so tianspaiently uishonest, which has alieauy been caught attempting to
fiame the Syiian goveinment foi mass-casualty events anu atiocities of theii own
uoing, it is at least plausible that militant iebel gioups with the insiuious motivations
to use them against civilian populations coulu also be capable of ueploying weapons
of mass uestiuction that aie moie than within theii means of obtaining. 0n }une
92 Syiian iebels aim to use chemical weapons, blame Bamascus - iepoit, Russia Touay, }une 1u,
2u12
9S Libyan missiles on the loose, The Washington Post, Nay 9, 2u12
17th, 2u12, the 0S was caught lying, iegaiuing Russian gunships being shippeu to
Syiia. In the New York Times' "Copteis in Syiia Nay Not Be New, 0.S. 0fficials Say," a
senioi uefense uepaitment official aumitteu that, when 0S Secietaiy of State Billaiy
Clinton maue hei fiauuulent claim iegaiuing Russian weapon shipments, she "put a
little spin on it to put the Russians in a uifficult position." The New York Times
continueu by stating, "Nis. Clinton's claim about the helicopteis, auministiation
officials saiu, is pait of a calculateu effoit to iaise the piessuie on Russia to abanuon
Piesiuent Bashai al-Assau, its main ally in the Niuule East." This blatant act of
ueception anu uisinfoimation is inuicative of the campaign of fabiication
oichestiateu by the 0S State Bepaitment, the Biitish Foieign 0ffice, anu Westein anu
uulf State news outlets aiounu the woilu to uemonize both the Syiian goveinment
anu its extensive allies aiounu the woilu.
94

0n }une 21, 2u12, The New York Times confiimeu what alteinative meuia outlets
anu numeious geopolitical analysts hau been iepoiting since the fiist months of the
upiising in 2u11, that outsiue foices, incluuing the Ameiican CIA, weie supplying
Syiia's iebels with weapons anu mateiial assistance fiom Southein Tuikey. In "C.I.A.
Saiu to Aiu in Steeiing Aims to Syiian 0pposition," the New York Times stateu:
A smoll number of C.l.A. officers ore operotinq secretly in soutbern Turkey, belpinq
ollies JeciJe wbicb Syrion opposition fiqbters ocross tbe borJer will receive orms to
fiqbt tbe Syrion qovernment, occorJinq to Americon officiols onJ Arob intelliqence
officers. Tbe weopons, incluJinq outomotic rifles, rocket-propelleJ qrenoJes,
ommunition onJ some ontitonk weopons, ore beinq funneleJ mostly ocross tbe Turkisb
borJer by woy of o sboJowy network of intermeJiories incluJinq Syrio´s Huslim
BrotberbooJ onJ poiJ for by Turkey, SouJi Arobio onJ µotor, tbe officiols soiJ. Tbe
C.l.A. officers bove been in soutbern Turkey for severol weeks, in port to belp keep
weopons out of tbe bonJs of fiqbters ollieJ witb Al µoeJo or otber terrorist qroups, one
senior Americon officiol soiJ. Tbe 0bomo oJministrotion bos soiJ it is not proviJinq
orms to tbe rebels, but it bos olso ocknowleJqeJ tbot Syrio´s neiqbbors woulJ Jo so. By
belpinq to vet rebel qroups, Americon intelliqence operotives in Turkey bope to leorn
more obout o qrowinq, cbonqinq opposition network insiJe of Syrio onJ to estoblisb
new ties. ´C.l.A. officers ore tbere onJ tbey ore tryinq to moke new sources onJ recruit
people,´ soiJ one Arob intelliqence officiol wbo is briefeJ requlorly by Americon
counterports. Americon officiols onJ retireJ C.l.A. officiols soiJ tbe oJministrotion wos
olso weiqbinq oJJitionol ossistonce to rebels, like proviJinq sotellite imoqery onJ otber
JetoileJ intelliqence on Syrion troop locotions onJ movements. Tbe oJministrotion is
olso consiJerinq wbetber to belp tbe opposition set up o ruJimentory intelliqence
service. But no Jecisions bove been moJe on tbose meosures or even more oqqressive
steps, like senJinq C.l.A. officers into Syrio itself, tbey soiJ.
9S
0nueniably, the West, leu by the 0S anu its uulf State pioxies, hau been aiming
teiioiists, paiticulaily the Nuslim Biotheihoou, while beiating the Syiian
goveinment foi "violating" a 0N-manuateu ceasefiie anu foi "failing to piotect" its
population. The Nuslim Biotheihoou has been combateu by nations acioss the Aiab
94 Copteis in Syiia Nay Not Be New, 0.S. 0fficials Say, The New Yoik Times, }une 1S, 2u12
9S C.I.A. Saiu to Aiu in Steeiing Aims to Syiian 0pposition, The New Yoik Times, }une 21, 2u12
Woilu to stem the tiue of theii sectaiian extiemism, violence, anu theii taigeteu
eiosion of seculai nation-states. Iionically, the 0S, which has claimeu to be fighting
the foices of sectaiian extiemism anu "teiioiism" foi ovei a uecaue, has been
ievealeu as the piimaiy enablei of the most violent anu extieme teiioiist
oiganizations in the woilu. These incluue, in auuition to the Nuslim Biotheihoou,
the Libyan Islamic Fighting uioup (LIFu) in Libya, Baloch teiioiists in Pakistan, anu
the Nujahiueen-e-Khalq (NEK) cuiiently baseu in Iiaq anu being useu as pioxies
against Iian. Effoits to impose an aims embaigo on Syiia is now ievealeu to be one-
siueu, aimeu at giving iebels an auvantage in the piolongeu blooubath with the
intent of tipping the balance in favoi of Westein pioxy-foices, iathei than enuing the
violence as soon as possible as claimeu by the 0N, anu in paiticulai, Kofi Annan.
Bespite this, howevei, the so-calleu "Fiee Syiian Aimy," accoiuing to the New York
Times, consists of only 1uu oi so small foimations maue up of "a hanuful of fighteis
to a couple of hunuieu combatants," betiaying the naiiative that the Syiian
goveinment faces a laige populai upiising, anu ievealing that the "Fiee Syiian Aimy"
is in fact a small collection of meicenaiies, foieign fighteis, anu sectaiian extiemists,
aimeu, funueu, anu uiiecteu by foieign inteiests solely to wieak havoc within Syiia.
Foi the 0niteu States to claim Syiia has "faileu" to piotect its population, while
simultaneously fueling the veiy aimeu conflict it claims it is seeking to enu, is not
only hypociisy of the highest oiuei, but a ciime against woilu peace - punishable
unuei the Nuiembeig pieceuent. Auuitionally, TlHF Nagazine's }une 2S, 2u12 aiticle
"A Wai on Two Fionts," uesciibeu how the 0S State Bepaitment buugeteu ovei $72
million to tiain aimeu uissiuents in enciyption, hacking, anu piouucing viial viueos:
Wosbinqton bos soiJ it will not octively support tbe Syrion opposition in its biJ to
oust AssoJ. 0fficiolly, tbe 0.S. soys it obiJes by tbe 0.N process leJ by Kofi Annon onJ
Joes not conJone orms soles to opposition qroups os lonq os tbere ore 0.N. 0bservers in
Syrio. Nevertbeless, os 0.S. officiols bove reveoleJ to TlHF, tbe 0bomo AJministrotion
bos been proviJinq meJio-tecbnoloqy troininq onJ support to Syrion JissiJents by woy
of smoll nonprofits like tbe lnstitute for Wor & Peoce Reportinq onJ IreeJom Eouse.
virol viJeos of olleqeJ otrocities, like tbe footoqe Abu 6bosson proJuceJ, bove moJe
AssoJ one of tbe most revileJ men on tbe plonet, belpinq turn tbe Arob leoque oqoinst
bim onJ emborrossinq bis few remoininq ollies olmost Joily. "lf tbe [0.S.] qovernment is
involveJ in Syrio, tbe qovernment isn´t qoinq to toke Jirect responsibility for it," soys
lowrence lessiq, Jirector of EorvorJ´s FJmonJ }. Sofro Center for Ftbics. "Tbe tools
tbot you Jeploy in lnternet freeJom interfere witb tools JeployeJ by on existinq
qovernment, onJ tbot con be perceiveJ os on oct of oqqression."
Tbe proqrom octuolly beqon four yeors oqo witb o Jifferent torqet: Cbino. ln 2008,
Hicboel Eorowitz, o lonqtime reliqious-liberty oJvocote, went to bis frienJ
Representotive Ironk Wolf, o virqinio Republicon, onJ suqqesteJ settinq osiJe funJs to
belp Iolun 6onq, o reliqious qroup tbot Beijinq bos lobeleJ o Jonqerous cult. Tbe
money wos supposeJ to belp tbe JissiJent Jistribute softwore to jump Cbino´s mossive
firewoll onJ orqonize online os well os communicote freely witb tbe outsiJe worlJ. Wolf
succeeJeJ in oppropriotinq $1S million. But 0.S. Jiplomots feoreJ tbot move woulJ
Jeroil relotions witb Beijinq, onJ little money wos spent. Tben in 2009 - 10 lronion
protests onJ lost yeor´s Arob Sprinq moJe lnternet freeJom o mucb more fosbionoble
term in Wosbinqton. Conqress soon forkeJ over on oJJitionol $S7 million to Stote to
spenJ in tbe next tbree yeors. Tbe money is spilt omonq tbree oreos: eJucotion onJ
troininq; ononymizotion, wbicb mosks users´ iJentities, usuolly tbrouqb encryption;
onJ circumvention tecbnoloqy, wbicb ollows users to overcome qovernment censors so
tbot tbeir work - onJ tbot of repressive reqimes - con be see worlJwiJe.
96

In biazen uisplay of hypociisy, the 0niteu States championeu "Inteinet Fieeuom"
against "iepiessive iegimes" it sought to unueimine anu topple, while in 2u12, 0S
policy makeis anu iepiesentatives iepeateuly authoieu anu attempteu to pass
contioveisial inteinet censoiship bills such as the Anti-Counteifeiting Tiaue
Agieement (ACTA), which woulu have abolisheu all legal oveisight involving the
iemoval inteinet content, allowing copyiight holueis to foice ISPs to iemove
mateiial fiom the inteinet, something that woulu noimally iequiie a couit oiuei,
thus manuating ISPs with legal liabilities if they chose not to iemove content.
Auuitionally unuei ACTA anu similai iegulatoiy pioposals, inteinet useis woulu be
ciiminalizeu, baiieu fiom accessing the Inteinet anu even impiisoneu foi shaiing
copyiighteu mateiial. 0S senatois }oseph Liebeiman anu }ohn NcCain, both staunch
suppoiteis of foieign inteivention in Syiia, woulu issue S. 21uS (Cybeisecuiity Act)
on Febiuaiy 1Sth, 2u12 anu S. 21S1 (Secuie IT) on Naich 1th, 2u12. 0n Apiil 26,
2u12, the 0S Bouse of Repiesentatives passeu the Cybei Intelligence Shaiing anu
Piotection Act (CISPA) - a law that woulu have staikly uetiimental implications foi
the inteinet as a meuium foi fiee speech if signeu into law by 0S Piesiuent Baiack
0bama. While TlHF iepoits that the 0S goveinment's initial taiget was inueeu China
- with $1S million appiopiiateu foi cybei effoits to suppoit uissiuent activity against
Beijing - it was }oseph Liebeiman himself who famously stateu:
Riqbt now Cbino, tbe qovernment, con Jisconnect ports of its lnternet in cose of wor
onJ we neeJ to bove tbot bere too.
97
TlHF's iepoit ieflects the seemingly limitless uegiee of outsiue inteifeience in the
Syiian conflict, with foieign entities attempting to meticulously cultivate anu shape
eveiy uimension of the situation to the uetiiment of the legitimate goveinment in
Syiia. TlHF auuitionally iepoiteu that the 0bama auministiation's executive oiuei
imposing sanctions on any company "helping Syiia oi Iian commit human-iights
abuses" woulu not incluue the Ameiican companies that solu the Syiian goveinment
the inteinet technology it uses to filtei its inteinet seivices, the veiy seivices the 0S
goveinment has allotteu substantial public funus towaius to tiain uissiuents to
bypass:
An onqoinq cbollenqe is tbot tbe flow of softwore qoes to botb siJes. Tbe reqime bos
importeJ tecbnoloqy from tbe 0.S. to trock people online. "A lot of tbese tecbnoloqies
con be useJ for qreot qooJ,´ soys Soscbo Heinrotb, wbo is leoJinq tbe lnternet-in-o-
suitcose project, ´but tbey ore olso o Ioustion borqoin." Tbe 0bomo AJministrotion lost
montb issueJ on Fxecutive 0rJer imposinq sonctions on ony compony belpinq Syrion or
lron commit bumon-riqbts obuses. Wosbinqton´s biqb-tecb compoiqn will not Jetbrone
AssoJ. But is bos qiven Syrion JissiJents o meosure of confiJence os tbey foce tbe
reqime´s oJvontoqe in firepower. ln tbe montbs since finisbinq bis troininq, Abu
96 Billaiy's Little Staitup: Bow the 0.S. Is 0sing Technology to Aiu Syiia's Rebels, TlHF, }une 1S,
2u12
97 Cybeisecuiity Neasuies Will Nanuate uoveinment "IB Tokens" To 0se The Inteinet, Piison
Planet, }une 28, 2u1u
6bosson bos sbot Jozens of viJeos. AskeJ wbetber bis AK-47 or bis viJeo comero is tbe
more powerful weopon, Abu 6bosson louqbs. "Hy AK!" be soys. Ee pouses for o few
seconJs. "Actuolly if tbere is on lnternet connection, my comero is more powerful."
In late }une 2u12, a Tuikish F-4 jet manufactuieu by the 0S anu last useu in majoi
combat opeiations in Iiaq to uestioy aii uefenses, penetiateu Syiian aiispace anu
was shot uown by Syiian secuiity foices. Tuikey woulu claim its jet was "a mile into
inteinational wateis" by the time it was shot uown. The F-4 fightei jet, the newest of
which aie alieauy aiounu Su yeais olu, has a top speeu of Nach 2.2, oi 1,6uu-mph ¡
2,Suu-kph. That means in one minute it can tiavel 26 miles - oi neaily one mile eveiy
2 seconus. Any anti-aiiciaft weapon fiieu against Tuikey's aumitteuly "off couise"
fightei woulu have ceitainly been fiieu while the jet was well within Syiian aiispace
with the fiieu oiunance aiiboine anu on couise to inteicepting the aiiciaft befoie it
tiaveleu back ovei inteinational wateis. Tuikey's claim of being "a mile" within
inteinational aiispace may seem ieasonable to the aveiage obseivei, accustomeu to
tiaveling at speeus wheie a mile is ielatively fai, but in teims of aii combat, a mile
equates into seconus. That means in one minute it can tiavel 26 miles - oi neaily one
mile eveiy 2 seconus. Even if claims by Tuikey aie tiue that it hau ietieateu to a
"mile" ovei inteinational wateis when it was uestioyeu, that woulu mean it was ovei
inteinational wateis foi a meie 2 seconus. This means whatevei oiunance Syiia useu
was alieauy fiieu anu aiiboine in Syiian aiispace befoie the aiiciaft uepaiteu.
Tuikey, acutely awaie of the immense tensions it has cultivateu with neighboiing
Syiia, exeiciseu iecklessness by tiaveling so close to Syiian aiispace. The casual
obseivei may also be unawaie of the iole 0S-built F-4's play in scouting out anu
neutializing aii uefense systems. Besignateu "wilu weasels," F-4's hau been
extensively useu in the opening phases of wai against Iiaq in 1991, flying 2,S96
soities, fiiing moie than 1,uuu aii-to-giounu missiles, anu uestioying moie than 2uu
taigets in a campaign aimeu at uestioying Iiaqi aii uefenses. Peihaps ielying on the
ignoiance of theii ieaueiship as to how speeus, tiajectoiies, anu weapons of mouein
waifaie woik, the mainstieam piess has attempteu to poitiay the uowning of the F-4
as a piovocative act caiiieu out entiiely ovei inteinational wateis. In ieality, Tuikey's
jet was fiieu upon in Syiian aiispace, by its own account, as it was supposeuly in
"inteinational space" foi only one oi two seconus befoie finally being stiuck. Syiia
claims the entiie event took place ovei Syiian wateis - a claim NAT0 has been unable
to iefute with anything moie substantial than meie ihetoiic.
98
Tuikey woulu push
NAT0 to iegaiu Syiia's actions as an attack on the alliance, piompting NAT0 to holu a
meeting unuei Aiticle 4 of the alliance's tieaty, which allows a NAT0 membei to
iequest a consultation if it feels a thieat to its teiiitoiial integiity oi secuiity. Tuikey
woulu vow "piopoitionate" ietaliation foi its uowneu jet, piompting Tuikish Piime
Ninistei Recep Eiuogan, to pleuge "all possible suppoit to libeiate the Syiians fiom
uictatoiship" of Bashai al-Assau's goveinment, offeiing suppoit foi Syiian iebels,
waining that any Syiian tioops appioaching Tuikish boiueis woulu be consiueieu a
thieat anu uealt with as a militaiy taiget.
0n }une 27th, 2u12, Tuikey sent a heavily guaiueu convoy of 1S long-uistance
guns anu othei militaiy vehicles to the Syiian boiuei, amiu belligeient thieats of
98 Syiia says it shot uown Tuikish jet ovei Syiian wateis, NBC News, }une 22, 2u12
ietaliation, piompting Piesiuent Assau to acknowleuge that his countiy was officially
in a state of wai, anu that winning woulu uepenu on ciushing the militant opposition.
As the situation on the Tuikish-Syiian boiuei iemaineu tense while Tuikish officials
confiimeu the ueployment of Su anti-aiiciaft batteiies, the Tuikish Befense
Piocuiement Agency announceu its plans to seek a $4 billion contiact foi a long-
iange aii-uefense missile system.
99
0n }une 28, 2u12, two laige bomb explosions
taigeting a goveinment builuing iockeu Bamascus, piompting Piesiuent Assau to
ieasseit the Syiian goveinment's uuty to "annihilate teiioiists in any coinei of the
countiy," auuing:
We will not occept ony non-Syrion, non-notionol moJel, wbetber it comes from biq
countries or frienJly countries. No one knows bow to solve Syrio´s problems os well os
we Jo.
Kofi Annan pioposeu a new Syiian solution, manuating the cieation of a
tiansitional national unity goveinment consisting of both iepiesentatives of Assau's
goveinment anu membeis of the opposition to cieate a neutial backuiop foi
tiansition - insinuating that Assau woulu not have a place in the new goveinment.
Russia categoiically opposeu the iuea that othei countiies shoulu uictate the futuie
of Syiia, insisting that the uecision be up to Syiians themselves. Russian Foieign
Ninistei Seigey Laviov stateu:
We will not support onJ connot support ony meJJlinq from outsiJe or ony
imposition of recipes. Tbis olso concerns tbe fote of tbe presiJent of tbe country, Bosbor
ol-AssoJ.
The possibility of foieign militaiy entities openly engaging in waifaie against
Syiia iemains evei piesent, with Tuikey the likely canuiuate to leau the chaige
against Assau if the situation continues to ueteiioiate. With Tuikey's ostensible neeu
to annex iegions of noithein Syiia to establish a seiies of long pioposeu
"humanitaiian coiiiuois" as the pietext, a militaiy inteivention might be a
possibility. Whethei oi not the Syiian ciisis is met with open foieign militaiy
inteivention, it is impoitant to point out that, because of the coveitly tiaineu, aimeu
anu financeu lawless iebel fighteis, the Syiian people have alieauy felt the hoiiois of
wai, in all its inane violence anu unmitigateu stupiuity. While Kofi Annan's oiiginal
Peace Plan - if honestly implementeu with both siues iespecting the ceasefiie -
woulu have uefuseu the situation, it is Annan anu the membei nations of NAT0 anu
the uulf Coopeiation Council that uispiopoitionately laiu the blame foi incieasing
violence solely on the Syiian goveinment, while those nations took eveiy measuie
possible to fuithei enflame the situation by pioviuing mateiial assistance to
sectaiian extiemists. Consiueiing the level of subveision anu ueceit uemonstiateu by
foieign poweis opeiating in Syiia, Bashai al-Assau's ambitions to ciush sectaiian
fighteis by foice may well be waiianteu. As with many othei Westein-backeu
upiisings opeiating unuei the covei of "uemociatic" jaigon, the use of violence,
snipeis, meicenaiies, anu othei aimeu piovocateuis is pait of a long establisheu
pattein of national uestabilization thiough the baiiel of a gun. 0nuoubteuly, theie
will come a time when those iesponsible inuiviuuals answei foi theii ciimes against
the nation of Syiia, anu its people.
99 Nissile shopping: Tuikey to buy long-iange missile system, }une 29, 2u12
{}uly 1
st
, 2012)
Cbapter 2:
Perception Management and Psycbological Warfare
"Tbe business of tbe journolist is to Jestroy tbe trutb, to lie outriqbt, to pervert, to
vilify, to fown ot tbe feet of mommon, onJ to sell tbe country for bis Joily breoJ. You
know it onJ l know it, onJ wbot folly is tbis toostinq on inJepenJent press. We ore tbe
tools onJ vossols of tbe ricb men bebinJ tbe scenes. We ore tbe jumpinq jocks, tbey pull
tbe strinqs onJ we Jonce. 0ur tolents, our possibilities onJ our lives ore oll tbe property
of otber men. We ore intellectuol prostitutes."
)obn Swinton
Iormer Cbief of Stoff ot Tbe New York Times
Thioughout the Syiian ciisis, the poitiayal of events on the giounu by vaiious
news meuia outlets became an extension of the conflict itself - a battlefielu of
uiametiically opposeu views vying foi legitimacy. Any iepoitage oi analysis that
uiveiteu too fai fiom the uominant naiiative founu no place in the Westein
mainstieam meuia. State-sponsoieu English language news agencies such as Russio
ToJoy, Iian's PressTv, anu numeious othei outlets foi inuepenuent ieseaich anu
analysis offeieu a uiffeient inteipietation of events in Syiia. To piopagate theii
veision of ieality, ieputable mainstieam news outlets such as BBC, CNN, anu Al-
}ozeero weie laigely ieliant on questionable YouTube viueo footage, social meuia
heaisay anu aumitteuly unconfiimeu iepoits fiom membeis of the opposition.
Numeious factual inconsistencies anu official exaggeiations followeu, leauing many
to question the uominant naiiative anu the news outlets uisseminating it.
While some authentic footage fiom insiue Syiia suifaceu thioughout the conflict,
othei viueos featuieu membeis of the opposition "staging" acts of violence in
settings that iesembleu movie-sets, complete with banuages anu fake bloou. Shoitly
aftei the stait of the upiising, Isiael's Ynet News publisheu an aiticle in late Apiil
2u11 citing claims by Syiian state meuia that secuiity foices iecoveieu bottles of
bloou, mobile phones using foieign SIN caius, positioning softwaie anu uigital
cameias containing fabiicateu viueos uepicting acts of violence.
1uu
Ynet News
uismisseu the claims as an act of uespeiation fiom Assau's iegime to uownplay
violence, but offeieu no eviuence beyonu moie "activist witness accounts". Accoiuing
to the iepoit issueu by Syiia's SANA News, the phones anu cameias weie caiiieu by
membeis of an aimeu gioup iesponsible foi attacking militaiy peisonnel in the
Rakhem al-Biiak aiea of Baiaa:
6roup members olso corrieJ clubs, sworJs onJ metol implements tbot were useJ
Jurinq protests oqoinst security forces, in oJJition to bottles full of reol blooJ to be
useJ in filminq fobricoteJ octs of violence onJ bottles filleJ witb qosoline to stort
fires.
1u1
1uu Syiia: Repoits of violence fabiicateu, Ynet News, Apiil 2S, 2u11
1u1 Nobile Phones 0sing non-Syiian SIN Caius anu Bigital Cameias, SANA News, Apiil 2S, 2u11
While Syiian state meuia iepoiteu numeious cases of iebel gioups attacking
militaiy locations anu staging acts of violence, the Westein mainstieam meuia citeu
evei-incieasing casualty iates, ielying on oiganizations baseu in the 0niteu
Kinguom. Both the Syiian 0bseivatoiy foi Buman Rights (S0BR) anu the Syiian
Buman Rights Nonitoiing Centie (the lattei having no web piesence) compileu
iepoits fiom "activists insiue anu outsiue the countiy," to piouuce the oveiwhelming
casualty iepoits citeu by mainstieam meuia outlets. The 0niteu States goveinment
also financially suppoiteu Syiian Non-uoveinmental 0iganizations (Nu0s) that
pioviueu the 0niteu Nations with its official casualty iates thiough oiganizations
such as the National Enuowment foi Bemociacy anu othei institutions that ieceive
funuing uiiectly fiom the 0S Congiess anu State Bepaitment.
Neaily eveiy Syiian human iights oiganization whose finuings have been
acknowleugeu by the mainstieam meuia inteilock with seemingly benign Nu0s anu
civil society gioups that ieceive funuing fiom coipoiations that actively inteiface
with "global institutions," such as the Inteinational Nonetaiy Funu, Woilu Bank, the
Inteinational Ciiminal Couit, anu the 0niteu Nations. Reporters Witbout BorJers (a
iecipient of funus fiom the National Enuowment foi Bemociacy) ieleaseu a Naich
2u11 iepoit titleu, "}ouinalists taigeteu by goveinments uespeiate to contiol news,"
which citeu the Lonuon-baseu Syiian Buman Rights Nonitoiing Centie, while
Eumon Riqbts Wotcb (a iecipient of funus fiom ueoige Soios' 0pen Society Institute)
citeu the Washington-baseu Bamascus Centei foi Buman Rights foi its publisheu
iepoits.
1u2
0utlets such as the Woll Street }ournol iepeateuly mention Rauwan
Ziaueh, a Washington-baseu Syiian opposition activist anu uiiectoi of the Bamascus
Centei foi Buman Rights Stuuies.
1uS
the Boston 6lobe in 2u11 state u, "Activists saiu
secuiity foices killeu at least 26 people anu wounueu hunuieus," continuing,
"Wissam Taiif, executive uiiectoi of Insan, a Syiian human iights gioup, saiu he hau
inteivieweu young men toituieu just uays ago. 0ne of them, who hau his fingeinails
pulleu out, hau taken a leau in the piotests yesteiuay in Baniyas."
While the authenticity of these iepoits iemains uifficult to confiim, the Boston
6lobe's stoiy can be peiceiveu as misleauing, as Wissam Taiif anu his Insan
oiganization weie not on the giounu beaiing witness to events in Baniyas, but baseu
in Spain, opeiating as an "inteinational non-goveinmental oiganization." The
6uorJion noteu the uifficulties of veiifying iepoits in an Apiil 2u11 aiticle, quoting a
Eumon Riqbts Wotcb ieseaichei monitoiing Syiia fiom Beiiut, Lebanon who saiu:
We ore receivinq seconJ bonJ informotion from Beroo tbot is quite worryinq obout
boJies on tbe qrounJ, more tbon S0 people killeJ over tbe lost two Joys, compoiqns of
orrests, but we ore not oble to confirm tbot.
1u4
1u2 }ouinalists Taigeteu By uoveinments Bespeiate To Contiol The News, Repoiteis Without Boiueis, Naich
2S, 2u11
1uS Syiia: Aimeu 0pposition uioups Committing Abuses, Buman Rights Watch, Naich 2u, 2u12
1u4 Syiia, Libya anu Niuule East uniest - Thuisuay 28 Apiil 2u11, The uuaiuian, Apiil 28, 2u11
While it woulu be unwise to uismiss all allegations of excessive violence cieuiteu
to Syiian secuiity foices, theie aie fiim giounus foi skepticism with iegaiu to
iepoits of goveinment-oichestiateu massacies. Not only have such claims been
fabiicateu in Syiia, but also thioughout the conflict in Libya in 2u11. 0nveiifieu
iepoits accusing Nuammai uauuafi of stiafing peaceful uemonstiatois with fightei
jets anu killing moie than 6,uuu civilians weie the basis foi the Libyan }amahiiiya
goveinment's expulsion fiom the 0N Buman Rights Council shoitly befoie the 0N
Secuiity Council issueu Resolution 197S, which
0ne of the main souices foi these allegations was the Libyan League foi Buman
Rights, an oiganization linkeu to the Inteinational Feueiation of Buman Rights, the
FIBB (a iecipient of funus fiom the 0S State Bepaitment). 0n Febiuaiy 21st, 2u11,
the ueneial Secietaiy of the Libyan League foi Buman Rights, Bi. Soliman
Bouchuiguii, initiateu a petition in collaboiation with 0N Watch anu the National
Enuowment foi Bemociacy, which was latei signeu by ovei 7u Nu0s. 0n the 2Sth of
Febiuaiy 2u11, Bi. Soliman Bouchuiguii went to the 0N Buman Rights council in
ueneva to accuse the Libyan }amahiiiya goveinment of committing ciimes against
humanity anu hiiing ovei 6,uuu meicenaiies to "pillage anu kill all civilians without
uistinction." Fiench investigative jouinalist }ulien Teil's 2u11 uocumentaiy film, "Tbe
Eumonitorion Wor," ieveals the tenuous fabiications of these allegations in an
inteiview with Bi. Soliman Bouchuiguii:
jullen 1ell: You Jescribe o lot of crime in libyo, for exomple on Horcb 17tb, you
reporteJ six tbousonJ JeoJ, twelve tbousonJ wounJeJ, five bunJreJ missinq, seven
bunJreJ coses of rope, onJ seventy five tbousonJ refuqees. 0n Hoy S1st, you reporteJ
eiqbteen tbousonJ JeoJ, forty six tbousonJ wounJeJ, twenty eiqbt tbousonJ missinq,
one tbousonJ six bunJreJ coses of rope, onJ one bunJreJ onJ fifty tbousonJ refuqees.
lf we qo to libyo, wbot woulJ you oJvise us to Jo in orJer to Jocument oll tbose
crimes?
Ðr. Sollmun Bouchulgulr: Tbere is no woy. You know, tbe libyon qovernment
never qives informotion on bumon riqbts, on prisons, prisoners, onJ people wbo bove
been killeJ, on people beinq killeJ. so on estimotion bos to be Jone. AnJ l JiJ not qet
tbis informotion from just onyone. l qot tbot from tbe libyon Prime Hinister, on tbe
otber siJe, so of tbe Notionol Tronsitionol Council. lt´s tbe Prime Hinister, Hister.
ubbb. woit. l´ll tell you loter. lt wos HobmouJ of tbe Worfollob tribe! Ee´s tbe one
tbot stoteJ onJ qove tbese numbers. l useJ tbem, but witb some precoution.
At a piess confeience on }une 28th, 2u11, Inteinational Ciiminal Couit piosecutoi
Luis Noieno 0campo iesponueu to a question iegaiuing the eviuence useu by the
ICC to issue an aiiest waiiant foi Nuammai uauuafi, Saif Al Islam, anu Abuullah Al
Senussi. Be stateu:
l oJvise you to reoJ tbe opplicotion of tbe prosecutor´s office, mony poqes, l tbink
wbot. 77 poqes. We Jescribe in Jetoil tbe focts, most of it is public, onJ tbe juJqes olso
JeciJeJ onJ onolyzeJ tbe eviJence, so of course, we ore prosecutors onJ juJqes, so rely
on focts. So, we proveJ tbe crimes, tbot´s wbot we JiJ, we presenteJ tbe cose to juJqes,
onJ for o montb onJ ten Joys, tbe juJqes from tbree Jifferent continents moJe on
inJepenJent evoluotion onJ tbey JeciJeJ.
Nost of the uocument iefeiieu to by 0campo was heavily ieuacteu, withholuing
ciucial pieces of eviuence fiom public sciutiny. Pages 17 to 71 weie ieuacteu,
piecisely the sections uisclosing eviuence anu testimony of allegeu atiocities
committeu by the Libyan }amahiiiya goveinment. Amongst the public souices citeu
by the piosecutoi's office at the ICC, weie I0X News aiticles, uocuments ieleaseu by
the Cential Intelligence Agency, anu piess ieleases issueu by Bi. Soliman
Bouchuiguii's Libyan League foi Buman Rights, incluuing a speech he gave at the 0N
Buman Rights Council citing allegations given to him by the NTC's then-Piime
Ninistei Nahmouu }abiil.
jullen 1ell: Tbe Eumon Riqbts Council, wbere you qove your speecb, JiJ not
investiqote tbe informotion you proviJeJ before tbe 0N Security Council useJ tbem.
Eow Jo you exploin tbe lock of investiqotion onJ testimony tbot leJ Jirectly to o 0niteJ
Notions Resolution? Wby is it tbot your speecb boJ sucb on impoct onJ tbot tbe N60
consortium you qotbereJ succeeJeJ in seizinq tbe Eumon Riqbts Council so tbe
Security Council qot involveJ onJ JeciJeJ o resolution?
Ðr. Sollmun Bouchulgulr: l tbink tbe Jecisive foct is tbot 6oJJofi useJ tbe oir
force oqoinst bis own people, onJ l tbink tbot openeJ tbe woy for. tbe use of tbe oir
force oqoinst bis own people sboweJ tbot be wos unstoppoble. ln Benqbozi, more tbon
tbree bunJreJ people JieJ in two Joys - in two Joys! Hore tbon tbree bunJreJ victims!
AnJ tbot wos oll on poper, even tbe nomes.
jullen 1ell: Yes, but obout tbe six tbousonJ JeoJ, twelve tbousonJ wounJeJ, five
bunJreJ missinq, seven bunJreJ coses of rope onJ seventy five tbousonJ refuqees, con
you qive us ony eviJence?
Ðr. Sollmun Bouchulgulr: Now tbere ore one bunJreJ onJ fifty tbousonJ refuqees
in Tunisio only. 6o osk tbe Tunision qovernment, it´s tbe Tunision qovernment tbot
stoteJ tbot! Now tbere ore more tbon one bunJreJ onJ fifty tbousonJ libyons in
Tunisio wbo fileJ refuqee cloims in Tunisio.
jullen 1ell: About tbe number of people killeJ, con you qive us ony eviJence?
Ðr. Sollmun Bouchulgulr: .Wbot?
jullen 1ell: About tbe number of people killeJ, con you qive us ony eviJence?
Ðr. Sollmun Bouchulgulr: Tbere is no eviJence. Wbot l con tell you is tbot tbere is
no. tbere ore no Jocuments - in Az-Zowiyo, eiqbteen tbousonJ people JieJ, were
injureJ or missinq. Fiqbteen tbousonJ people! ln Az-Zowiyo only!
1uS
While Al-}ozeero anu BBC iepoiteu that the Libyan }amahiiiya goveinment
inflicteu aiistiikes on Benghazi in an attempt to quell populai uemonstiations,
Russia's militaiy ieleaseu a iepoit stating that Libya was being monitoieu fiom
space anu no such attacks actually took place, suggesting that these events weie
fabiicateu entiiely.
1u6
Bi. Soliman Bouchuiguii's Libyan League foi Buman Rights anu
7u othei affiliateu Nu0s sent letteis to Piesiuent 0bama, Euiopean 0nion Bigh
Repiesentative Catheiine Ashton, anu the 0N Secietaiy-ueneial Ban-ki Noon,
uemanuing inteinational action against Libya by invoking the "Responsibility to
Piotect" uoctiine, allowing NAT0 to militaiily inteivene in Libya. The eviuence citeu
1uS The Bumanitaiian Wai, }ulien Teil, 2u11
1u6 "Aiistiikes in Libya uiu not take place" - Russian militaiy, Russia Touay, Naich u1, 2u11
by Libyan League foi Buman Rights has nevei been veiifieu, noi has it been maue
available foi public sciutiny by the Inteinational Ciiminal Couit - eviuence that was
fabiicateu anu useu as the basis foi the National Tiansition Council to seize contiol
of Libya in collaboiation with NAT0.
Bouchuiguii conceueu that these allegations weie entiiely ieliant on the
opposition National Tiansitional Council, paiticulaily on the NTC's foimei Piime
Ninistei Nahmouu }abiil. }abiil was CE0 of the inteinational fiim }Trock, which
offeieu peisonal tiaining in communications skills to Aiab anu Southeast Asian
political leaueis backeu by the 0niteu States anu Isiael. A piimaiy client of }abiil's
was Sheikh Bamau bin-Khalifa Al Thani, the iuling Emii of Qatai anu piinciple
financiei of the Al-}ozeero news netwoik. Qaiauawi, host of the piogiam "osb-
Sboriob wol-Eoyot" {"Sboriob onJ life") on Al-}ozeero's Aiabic language seivice is
noteu foi enflaming uivisions in the Islamic Woilu by iefeiiing to Shi'as heietics, foi
uemanuing suppoit foi the Libyan iebels anu foi issuing a fatwa against Nuammai
uauuafi, calling foi his execution:
...To tbe officers onJ tbe solJiers wbo ore oble to kill Huommor 6oJJofi, to wboever
omonq tbem is oble to sboot bim witb o bullet onJ to free tbe country onJ [6oJ´s]
servonts from bim, l issue tbis fotwo {uftî): Bo it!
1u7

1u8
It was uuiing the "Aiab Spiing" upiisings that Wauah Khanfai uiamatically shifteu
Al-}ozeero's euitoiial policy in a move that Fiench jouinalist Thieiiy Neyssan calleu a
complete loss of the channels cieuibility, something that "took 1S yeais to builu anu
only 6 months to lose." In his Septembei 2u11 aiticle, "Wauah Khanfai, Al-}azeeia
anu the tiiumph of televiseu piopaganua," Neyssan stateu:
Burinq tbe first bolf of 2011, tbe µotori cbonnel become tbe preferreJ instrument
for pro-Western propoqonJo: it went to qreot lenqtbs to obscure tbe onti-imperiolist
onJ onti-Zionist ospect of tbe Arob revolutions onJ, in eocb country, it pickeJ tbe octors
it intenJeJ to support onJ tbose it JeciJeJ to Jeprecote. Not surprisinqly, it supporteJ
tbe kinq of Bobroin, o stuJent of HobmouJ }ibril, wbo boJ bis people qunneJ Jown,
wbile Al-}ozeero´s spirituol counsellor, Sbeikb ol-µoroJowi, wos collinq for o }iboJ over
tbe oir oqoinst ol-6oJJofi onJ ol-AssoJ, folsely occusinq tbem of murJerinq tbeir own
people.
Tbe conversion of Al-}ozeero into o propoqonJo tool for tbe recolonisotion of libyo
wos not ocbieveJ witbout tbe knowleJqe of tbe emir of µotor, but inJeeJ unJer bis
leoJersbip. Tbe 6ulf Cooperotion Council wos tbe first to coll for on ormeJ intervention
in libyo; µotor wos tbe first Arob country to join tbe Contoct 6roup. Ee funneleJ
weopons to tbe libyon "rebels" before senJinq in bis own qrounJ troops, especiolly
Jurinq tbe Bottle of Tripoli. ln excbonqe, be obtoineJ tbe privileqe of controllinq oll tbe
oil troJe on bebolf of tbe Notionol Tronsitionol Council.
1u9

1u7 The Politics of Sects, Al-Ahiam, Septembei 2S, 2uu8
1u8 The fatwa of Shaykh Yûsuf al-Qaiauâwî against uauuafi, Baitfoiu Seminaiy, Naich 1S, 2u11
1u9 Wauah Khanfai, Al-}azeeia anu the tiiumph of televiseu piopaganua, Septembei 26, 2u11
With Nahmouu }abiil at the helm of the officially iecognizeu iebel goveinment of
Libya, ieplicas weie built of Tiipoli's uieen Squaie anu Bab-el-Azizia in Al-}azeeia's
stuuios in Boha, wheie fabiicateu footage was bioaucasteu uepicting iebels
captuiing Tiipoli, a full thiee uays befoie the event actually occuiieu amiu heavy
bombaiuments fiom NAT0 in suppoit of the aimeu iebels. Although Libyan state
meuia issueu iepoits waining of viueo fabiication seveial uays befoie the act was
caiiieu out, the plan was implementeu nonetheless. This elaboiate psychological
waifaie opeiation was intenueu to uiminish loyalty anu public confiuence in Tiipoli
anu thioughout the countiy. Thioughout the conflict in Libya, the aimeu foices of the
Libyan }amahiiiya goveinment weie iefeiieu to as pio-uauuafi meicenaiies. These
accusations, iepeateu by multiple news agencies, weie baseu on the asseition,
iepeateu oJ nouseum, that uauuafi hiieu seveial thousanu Afiican meicenaiies who
weie iepoiteuly killing civilians anu using iape as a weapon. 0n Febiuaiy 22nu,
2u11, Ironce24 inteivieweu the Piesiuent of Amnesty lnternotionol Ironce,
uenevieve uaiiigos, wheie she claimeu that Libyan }amahiiiya goveinment
employeu the use of foieign fighteis, stating:
0n IriJoy onJ SoturJoy, we receiveJ informotion tbot foreiqn mercenories coulJ be
fiqbtinq omonq tbe 6oJJofi forces sent oqoinst tbose protestors in orJer to occelerote
tbe process of oppression.
Five months aftei hei appeaiance on Fiance24, }ulien Teil inteivieweu uaiiigos,
only to finu that hei position hau completely changeu on the mattei:
jullen 1ell: Amnesty lnternotionol´s oJvisor Bonotello Rovero wos in libyo for tbree
montbs. Sbe observeJ tbe imprisonment of coptureJ libyon civilions onJ foreiqners by
tbe Notionol Tronsitionol Council, wbo presenteJ tbese Jetoinees os foreiqn
mercenories. Wbot con you tell us obout tbot?
0enevleve 0urrlgox: Since tbe beqinninq of tbe Jeployment of onti-6oJJofi troops,
tbere were rumors of mercenory forces octinq on bebolf of 6oJJofi, yet our
investiqotors wbo orriveJ in miJ-Iebruory onJ JeporteJ in lote }une estoblisbeJ tbot
only o smoll number of people were incorceroteJ witbout cborqes. Actuolly, tbose
rumors mostly occuseJ Jork coloreJ people or block people - tbey coulJ bove been
libyons, since libyons livinq in tbe Soutb of tbe country Jon´t necessorily bove Arob
feotures. Tbis creoteJ o kinJ of feor onJ xenopbobio, wbicb leJ to beotinq,
mistreotment onJ o few imprisonments. But toJoy, we bove to oJmit tbot we bove no
eviJence 6oJJofi employeJ mercenory forces.
jullen 1ell: Your colleoque reporteJ tbot sbe JiJn´t witness ony mercenories, onJ
tbot tbis wos on unverifieJ story spreoJ by tbe meJio. Con you confirm ber ossertions?
0enevleve 0urrlgox: Absolutely! Bonotello´s work - onJ tbis is wby we sent
investiqotors in eorly - wos to verify if we octuolly founJ mercenories, onJ we JiJn´t.
Ior instonce, sbe quotes o younq Alqerion, wbose boss boJ to testify be workeJ in o
bokery becouse be wos suspecteJ to be o mercenory. Currently, we bove no siqn or
eviJence to corroborote tbese rumors.
11u
The ciiculation of false iepoits of Nuammai uauuafi employing Afiican
meicenaiy fighteis inueeu enflameu feelings of xenophobia among Libya's iebels,
11u The Bumanitaiian Wai, }ulien Teil, 2u11
leauing to the wiuespieau peisecution, uetainment, anu muiuei of uaik-skinneu
Libyans, as well as migiant woikeis fiom Nigei anu Chau.
111
The piopagation of such
unsubstantiateu claims pioviueu the necessaiy pietext foi foieign inteivention in
Libya. This militaiy anu meuia campaign was achieveu thiough the collaboiation of
institutions such as the 0N anu ICC, in paitneiship with coipoiate-owneu news
meuia outlets anu a myiiau of civil society gioups, most of which ieceive financial
assistance fiom the 0S State Bepaitment. It is thiough these uistoiteu lenses that the
Syiian conflict must be inteipieteu.
Wall Stieet anu Lonuon's meuia machine eageily chuineu out heaulines like BBC's
Novembei 2u11 aiticle, "Syiia secuiity foices 'commit ciimes against humanity,'"
announcing the conclusions of a 0N Buman Rights Council iepoit iegaiuing the
ongoing violence in Syiia.
112
Bespite the fact that peisonnel anu jouinalists fiom ovei
2uu inteinational meuia institutions have been alloweu to entei Syiia legally since
the outbieak of the ciisis, the BBC aiticle claims, "the investigation team membeis
say they weie uenieu entiy into Syiia itself," anu that the entiiety of theii "eviuence"
was gaineieu solely fiom inteiviews with "22S victims, witnesses anu also aimy
uefectois to investigate allegeu human iights violations." BBC's aiticle iaises
immeuiate suspicion ovei the veiacity of the iepoit, as "victims, witnesses, anu
uefectois," inteivieweu outsiue of Syiia constitutes moie heaisay than eviuence, by
gioups of people with a vesteu inteiest in negatively poitiaying the Syiian
goveinment. The Novembei 2u11 0N Buman Rights Council iepoit on Syiia
uesciibes exactly "how" the text was compileu. The section titleu "Nethous of Woik,"
uesciibes the questionable means of aggiegating eviuence foi the iepoit,
uemonstiating an immense conflict of inteiest behinu the 0N's pieueteimineu
conclusion - that Syiia is guilty of "ciimes against humanity" anu that the 0N
Secuiity Council must act (emphasis auueu):
C. MethoJx of work
7. Iirst-bonJ informotion wos collecteJ tbrouqb interviews witb victims onJ
witnesses of events in tbe Syrion Arob Republic. 1he lntervlewlng procexx begun ln
0enevu on 26 September 2011. 0veroll, 22S victims onJ,or witnesses, incluJinq
personnel wbo JefecteJ from tbe militory onJ tbe security forces, were intervieweJ.
8. A publlc cull wux muJe to ull lnterexteJ perxonx unJ orgunlzutlonx to
xubmlt relevunt lnformutlon unJ Jocumentutlon tbot woulJ belp tbe commission
implement its monJote. lt belJ meetinqs witb Hember Stotes from oll reqionol qroups,
reqionol orqonizotions, incluJinq tbe leoque of Arob Stotes onJ tbe 0rqonizotion of
lslomic Cooperotion, non- governmentul orgunlzutlonx, humun rlghtx JefenJerx,
journullxtx unJ expertx. Reports, scbolorly onolyses onJ meJio occounts, os well os
ouJio onJ visuol moteriol, were olso July consiJereJ.
9. 1he lnformutlon collecteJ lx xtoreJ ln u xecure Jutubuxe governeJ by UnlteJ
Nutlonx rulex on conflJentlullty.
111 Libya: Stop Aibitiaiy Aiiests of Black Afiicans, Buman Rights Watch, Septembei 4, 2u11
112 Syiia secuiity foices 'commit ciimes against humanity,' BBC, Novembei 28, 2u11
10. Tbe protection of victims onJ witnesses lies ot tbe beort of tbe metboJoloqy of
bumon riqbts investiqotions. Wbile tbe collecteJ informotion remoins confiJentiol, tbe
commission is Jeeply concerneJ obout tbe possibility of reprisols oqoinst inJiviJuols
wbo cooperoteJ witb it, onJ oqoinst tbeir relotives in tbe Syrion Arob Republic. lt is
olso concerneJ obout tbe protection of tbose inJiviJuols wbo openly spoke to tbe meJio
in on ottempt to counter tbe news blockoJe imposeJ by tbe 6overnment.
11S
The 0NBRC iepoit woulu also state that it ieceiveu no coopeiation fiom the
Syiian goveinment, ostensibly veiifying giievances that the publication is but a one-
siueu exeicise to pioviue the woist possible image of the Syiian goveinment, as tolu
by the Syiian opposition. The inclusion of non-goveinmental oiganizations iaises
immeuiate conceins, especially consiueiing that the iepoit is entiiely negligent in
listing any of these contiibuting Nu0s, who aie moie than likely espousing the
uominant naiiative championeu by the National Enuowment foi Bemociacy, ueoige
Soios' 0pen Society Institute, anu theii numeious of subsiuiaiies. The teim "allegeu"
is useu thioughout the iepoit in vaiious foims, fuithei illustiating the tenuous
natuie of the 0N Buman Rights Council's "eviuence," while all of the testimony, those
who supplieu it, anu appaiently the Nu0s involveu in compiling the 0N iepoit aie
expecteuly kept "confiuential." The 0S National Enuowment foi Bemociacy's jouinal,
Bemocrocy Biqest, in theii August 2u11 aiticle titleu, "Syiian militaiy 'stiaineu', as
Clinton meets opposition activists," noteu seveial Nu0s iepoiting human iights
abuses in Syiia, citing the Lonuon-baseu Syiian 0bseivatoiy foi Buman Rights, along
with the Washington-baseu Bamascus Centei foi Buman Rights.
114
Syiian 0bseivatoiy foi Buman Rights heau, Rami Abueliahman, met uiiectly with
Biitish Foieign Ninistei William Bague, who similaily couuleu Libyan opposition
leaueis in Lonuon while playing a key iole in piomoting the NAT0 attack on Libya.
}ust as in Libya, wheie "human iights activists" have now aumitteu to fabiicating
eviuence useu by the Inteinational Ciiminal Couit anu the 0niteu Nations, the
"eviuence" fiom Syiia iemains "confiuential," anu thus, impossible to confiim. The
Syiian 0bseivatoiy foi Buman Rights seives as one of the exclusive souices of
eviuence of human iights violations in Syiia, although the 0bseivatoiy itself fails to
publish its financial statements oi the backgiounus of those that constitute its
membeiship. Thioughout the ciisis in Syiia, news agencies such as AIP, AP, CNN,
HSNBC, CBS, BBC, anu many of the laigest Westein newspapeis citeu the
0bseivatoiy, cieating an impiession of a spiawling oiganization with hunuieus of
membeis woiking on the giounu, uocumenting eviuence in Syiia with photogiaphs
anu viueo, while cooiuinating with foieign piess to tianspaiently anu objectively
"obseive" the "human iights" conuitions in Syiia, as well as uemonstiate theii
methouologies. A Becembei 2u11 Reuters piece titleu, "Coventiy - an unlikely home
to piominent Syiia activist" pioviues fuithei insight in the 0bseivatoiy anu its
opeiatoi, Rami Abueliahman:
11S 0N Buman Rights Council Repoit on Syiia, 0niteu Nations, Novembei 2u11
114 Syiian militaiy 'stiaineu', as Clinton meets opposition activists, Bemociacy Bigest, August u2,
2u11
Witb only o few bours sleep, o pbone qlueJ to bis eor onJ onotber two rinqinq, tbe
fost-tolkinq Jirector of orquobly Syrio´s most biqb-profile bumon riqbts qroup is o very
busy mon. "Are tbere closbes? Eow JiJ be Jie? Ab, be wos sbot," soiJ Romi
AbJulrobmon into o pbone, tbe tolk of qunfire onJ Jeotb inconqruous witb bis two
beJroom terroceJ bome in Coventry, from wbere be runs tbe Syrion 0bservotory for
Eumon Riqbts. Wben be isn´t fielJinq colls from internotionol meJio, AbJulrobmon is
o few minutes Jown tbe rooJ ot bis clotbes sbop, wbicb be runs witb bis wife. CiteJ by
virtuolly every mojor news outlet since on uprisinq oqoinst tbe iron rule of Syrion
PresiJent Bosbor ol-AssoJ beqon in Horcb, tbe observotory bos been o key source of
news on tbe events in Syrio. SurrounJeJ by tbe troppinqs of fomily life -- o qlitter-
sponqleJ corJ moJe by bis younq Jouqbter, o monkey Joll witb "Best BoJ" on its belly
-- AbJulrobmon sits witb o loptop onJ pbones onJ pieces toqetber occounts of conflict
onJ riqbts obuses before uplooJinq news to tbe internet.
11S
Abuuliahman aumits that he fleu Syiia ovei 1u yeais ago anu has liveu in Biitain
evei since, anu will not ietuin until "al-Assau goes." The oppoitunity foi impiopiiety
seems almost inevitable foi a man who openly beiates a goveinment long taigeteu
foi "iegime change" by the veiy countiy he cuiiently iesiues in, anu whose methou
of iepoitage involves uubious phone-calls, which iemain uifficult foi anyone to
veiify. When Abuuliahman isn't ieceiving phone calls fiom fellow opposition
membeis in Syiia oi passing on his less-than-ieputable infoimation to the Westein
piess, he has been seen slinking in anu out of the Biitish Foieign 0ffice to meet
uiiectly with Foieign Secietaiy William Bague - who also openly seeks the iemoval
of Syiian Piesiuent, Bashai al-Assau. uiven the lack of cieuibility anu the obvious
uisauvantage of being neaily S,uuu miles away fiom the allegeu subject of his
"obseivations," Abuuliahman is a compiomiseu souice of infoimation foi any
outsiue obseivei seeking cieuible infoimation on the conflict in Syiia, one who has
eveiy ieason to twist ieality to suit his aumitteuly politically-motivateu agenua of
toppling the goveinment in Bamascus.
Thioughout the conflict in Syiia, outlets such as BBC anu CNN embiaceu English
speaking opposition activists on the giounu in Syiia, most piominently Biitish-
Syiian uual national Banny Bayem oi "Syiian Banny." Bayem claimeu to have
aspiiations to join the Fiee Syiian Aimy, anu often calleu foi the implementation of a
no fly zone, pleauing foi the 0niteu States, Isiael, anu NAT0 to conuuct aiistiikes
against Syiian aii bases.
116
Bayem's cieuibility plummeteu when footage leakeu of
him staging sounus of gunfiie anu exhibiting ielaxeu behavioi off cameia, befoie
going into chaiactei foi a hysteiical "casualty iepoit" uuiing an inteiview with
Anueison Coopei of CNN. Coopei attempteu to vinuicate Bayem on his piogiam,
insisting that netwoiks like CNN weie foiceu to iely on activist meuia that "cannot be
inuepenuently confiimeu," uespite the fact that Bayem uisplayeu gieat uifficulty
veibally attempting to exoneiate himself aftei leakeu footage showeu him asking,
"Biu you tell him to get the gunfiie ieauy." 0n aii, Bayem neivously stateu, "I uon't
know how they got it, this is all piivate, we shoulu have, this has all been ueleteu, we
11S Coventiy - an unlikely home to piominent Syiia activist, Reuteis, August 12, 2u11
116 Syiia: Life 0nuei Fiie, CNN, Febiuaiy 12, 2u12
have to uelete all this stuff," while Coopei completely faileu to auuiess what was
essentially an open aumission of fabiication.
Amina Abuallah Aiiaf al 0maii, a lesbian Syiian activist calling foi incieaseu
political anu peisonal fieeuoms, was at one point a piominent English language
bloggei. 0maii's populai blog, "A uay uiil In Bamascus," ieceiveu attention fiom
mainstieam meuia outlets such as the 6uorJion, who affiimeu that the blog was
"incieasingly populai aftei captuiing the imagination of the Syiian opposition as the
piotest movement stiuggleu in the face of the goveinment ciackuown." In a Nay
2u11 aiticle titleu, "A uay uiil in Bamascus becomes a heioine of the Syiian ievolt,"
the 6uorJion wiote:
Sbe is perbops on unlikely bero of revolt in o conservotive country. Iemole, qoy onJ
bolf-Americon, Amino AbJullob is copturinq tbe imoqinotion of tbe Syrion opposition
witb o bloq tbot bos sbot to prominence os tbe protest movement struqqles in tbe foce
of o brutol qovernment crockJown. Eer bloq reolly took off two weeks oqo witb o post
entitleJ Hy Iotber tbe Eero, o movinq occount of bow ber fotber foceJ Jown two
security oqents wbo come to orrest ber, occusinq ber of beinq o Solofist onJ o foreiqn
oqent.
AbJullob´s fomily is well-connecteJ - sbe bos relotives in tbe qovernment onJ tbe
Huslim BrotberbooJ wbom sbe prefers not to nome - onJ sbe soys beinq politicolly
octive wos o "noturol tbinq". "0nfortunotely, for most of my life beinq owore of Syrion
politics meons simply observinq onJ only commentinq privotely." Tbot cbonqeJ wben
protests broke out onJ AbJullob joineJ tbem, bloqqinq obout ber experiences. "Teorqos
wos lobbeJ ot us. l sow people vomitinq from tbe qos os l covereJ my own moutb onJ
nose onJ my eyes burneJ," sbe wrote ofter one Jemonstrotion. "l om sure l wosn´t tbe
only one to note tbot, if tbis becomes stonJorJ proctice, o niqob is o very procticol
tbinq to weor in future."
117
Syiian secuiity foices abuucteu 0maii in 2u11 uuiing the upiising, piompting an
inteinational outciy fiom LuBT communities anu the inteinational meuia. 'A uay uiil
in Bamascus' Bloggei Kiunappeu at uunpoint in Syiia, accusing Syiian state secuiity
seivices anu Ba'ath Paity militia of the abuuction, while the 0S State Bepaitment
showeu concein.
118
Amiu a campaign of inteinational conuemnation of 0maii's
auuction, a 4u yeai-olu Ameiican wiitei Tom NacNastei aumitteu that the "inspiiing
heio of the Syiian ievolution" was in fact an elaboiate fictional chaiactei he
concocteu.
While entiiely fictional claims of "Amina Aiiaf al 0maii" being abuucteu by Syiian
secuiity foices weie given cieuibility by the Westein meuia, similai hysteiics weie
cast ovei iepoits of 18-yeai-olu, Zainab al-Bosni who was allegeuly founu beheaueu
anu mutilateu "appaiently by Syiian secuiity agents," while in custouy aftei being
"uetaineu by secuiity agents to piessuie hei activist biothei to tuin himself in," as
citeu in a uiamatic iepoit in the Euffinqton Post .
119
The iepoit maue eveiy attempt to
117 A uay uiil in Bamascus becomes a heioine of the Syiian ievolt, The uuaiuian, Nay 6, 2u11
118 'A uay uiil in Bamascus' Bloggei Kiunappeu at uunpoint in Syiia, F0X News, }une u7, 2u11
119 Syiia: Zainab Al Bosni Believeu To Be Killeu In Custouy, Septembei 2S, 2u11
emphasize the Syiian's goveinment's iole in hei killing, stating, "the Assau family has
kept an iion giip on powei in Syiia foi moie than 4u yeais by biutally ciushing eveiy
sign of uissent." Bowevei, uays latei, Zainab al-Bosni iesuifaceu, alive anu well, on a
Syiian State Tv bioaucast. The Euffinqton Post's follow-up, "Zainab Al-Bosni, Woman
Repoiteu Beheaueu, Allegeuly Appeais 0n Tv," states:
A womon oppeoreJ on Syrion stote television WeJnesJoy cloiminq tbot sbe is tbe
younq Syrion wbo wos wiJely reporteJ to bove been bebeoJeJ onJ mutiloteJ by
security oqents wbile in custoJy lost montb. Tbe stotion soiJ tbe interview wos
intenJeJ to JiscreJit foreiqn "meJio fobricotions." ln tbe stote television interview, o
block-cloJ younq womon wbo iJentifieJ berself os Zoinob ol-Eosni soiJ sbe boJ run
owoy from ber fomily bome in lote }uly becouse ber brotbers olleqeJly obuseJ ber. Sbe
soiJ ber fomily JiJ not know tbot sbe wos olive onJ sbe oskeJ ber motber for
forqiveness. "l om very mucb olive onJ l bove opteJ to tell tbe trutb becouse l om
plonninq to qet morrieJ in tbe future onJ bove kiJs wbo l wont to be reqistereJ," sbe
soiJ.
12u
Neuia outlets iiiesponsibly uistoiteu legitimate conceins iegaiuing homosexuals
anu women in conflict-toin aieas of Syiia in an attempt to baselessly uemonize the
Assau goveinment in step with the 0S State Bepaitment anu its vast stable of meuia
anu intelligence assets. In the context of the 2u11 Libyan upiising, Westein meuia
outlets hysteiically iepoiteu that Nuammai uauuafi peisonally oiueieu the iaping of
hunuieus of women, an unveiifieu claim that senioi 0S officials such as Ambassauoi
Susan Rice asseiteu to leveiage in suppoit of 0N Resolution 197S:
Tbe reporteJ crimes onJ bumon riqbts violotions of tbe 6oJJofi reqime ore owful
enouqb os tbey ore tbot one bos to wonJer wby onyone woulJ neeJ to invent stories,
sucb os tbot of 6oJJofi´s troops, witb erections powereJ by vioqro, qoinq on o rope
spree. Perbops it wos peJJleJ becouse it´s tbe kinJ of story tbot "coptures tbe
imoqinotion of troumotizeJ publics". Tbis story wos token so seriously tbot some
people storteJ writinq to Pfizer to qet it to stop sellinq vioqro to libyo, since its
proJuct wos olleqeJly beinq useJ os o weopon of wor. People wbo otberwise sboulJ
know better, set out to Jeliberotely misinform tbe internotionol public.
Tbe vioqro story wos first JisseminoteJ by Al }ozeero, in colloborotion witb its rebel
portners, fovoureJ by tbe µotori reqime tbot funJs Al }ozeero. lt wos tben reJistributeJ
by olmost oll otber mojor Western news meJio. luis Horeno-0compo, Cbief Prosecutor
of tbe lnternotionol Criminol Court, oppeoreJ before tbe worlJ meJio to soy tbot tbere
wos "eviJence" tbot 6oJJofi JistributeJ vioqro to bis troops in orJer "to enbonce tbe
possibility to rope" onJ tbot 6oJJofi orJereJ tbe rope of bunJreJs of women. Horeno-
0compo insisteJ: "We ore qettinq informotion tbot 6oJJofi bimself JeciJeJ to rope"
onJ tbot "we bove informotion tbot tbere wos o policy to rope in libyo tbose wbo were
oqoinst tbe qovernment". Ee olso excloimeJ tbot vioqro is "like o mocbete," onJ tbot
"vioqro is o tool of mossive rope".
ln o stortlinq Jeclorotion to tbe 0N Security Council, 0.S. AmbossoJor Suson Rice
olso osserteJ tbot 6oJJofi wos supplyinq bis troops witb vioqro to encouroqe moss
rope. Sbe offereJ no eviJence wbotsoever to bock up ber cloim. lnJeeJ, 0.S. militory
12u Zainab Al-Bosni, Woman Repoiteu Beheaueu, Allegeuly Appeais 0n Tv, 0ctobei uS, 2u11
onJ intelliqence sources flotly controJicteJ Rice, tellinq NBC News tbot "tbere is no
eviJence tbot libyon militory forces ore beinq qiven vioqro onJ enqoqinq in systemotic
rope oqoinst women in rebel oreos." By }une 10, Cberif Bossiouni, wbo is leoJinq o 0N
riqbts inquiry into tbe situotion in libyo, suqqesteJ tbot tbe vioqro onJ moss rope
cloim wos port of o "mossive bysterio". ln foct, Bossiouni´s teom "uncovereJ only four
olleqeJ coses" of rope onJ sexuol obuse: "Con we Jrow o conclusion tbot tbere is o
systemotic policy of rope? ln my opinion we con´t".
ln oJJition to tbe 0N, Amnesty lnternotionol´s Bonotello Rovero soiJ in on
interview witb tbe Irencb Joily libérotion, tbot Amnesty boJ "not founJ coses of
rope.. Not only bove we not met ony victims, but we bove not even met ony persons
wbo bove met victims. As for tbe boxes of vioqro tbot 6oJJofi is supposeJ to bove boJ
JistributeJ, tbey were founJ intoct neor tonks tbot were completely burnt out."
121
The oiganization Women 0nJer Sieqe accuseu Syiian secuiity foices of
inuisciiminately iaping young women anu committing othei heinous acts in theii
publication, "The ultimate assault: Chaiting Syiia's use of iape to teiioiize its
people." Women 0nJer Sieqe iepoits of multiple attackeis, "usually goveinment
foices", who aie saiu to gang iape women in theii homes, allegeuly inoculating the
victims to immobilize them while theii "genitals aie buineu oi filleu with mice".
0nquestionably, these acts waiiant seveie conuemnation, howevei its ielationship
with ieality iemains uncleai, as the iepoit familiaily goes on to state (emphasis
auueu):
0overnment forcex unJ otherx oppeor to be corryinq out oppollinq sexuolizeJ
ottocks oqoinst women, men, onJ cbilJren in Syrio os tbe conflict tbere continues.
Although we ure unuble to lnJepenJently conflrm thexe xtorlex÷Syrio is simply
too Jonqerous, onJ our reseorcb stoff too smoll÷tbey ore conxlxtent both lnternully
unJ wlthln the newx unJ N0O reportx telllng xlmllur xtorlex from tbe Syrion
conflict.
uiven the uuplicity of the mainstieam news meuia anu associateu Nu0s in theii
coveiage of the Syiian conflict, the cieuibility of any oiganization attempting to
legitimize allegeu iepoits of atiocities by citing theii consistency to fit within a
flaweu uominant naiiative iemains highly questionable, especially when the
oiganization itself conceues:
Tbere ore well-JocumenteJ cbollenqes onJ limitotions wben it comes to stuJyinq
sexuolizeJ violence in conflict, onJ our Joto is not meont to represent tbe Syrion
conflict in its entirety. All of our reports come seconJ-or tbirJ-bonJ, onJ con´t be
inJepenJently confirmeJ.
uiven these statements, the statistics of iape anu violence issueu by Women
0nJer Sieqe can be nothing but highly questionable anu maiieu with inconsistencies,
culminating in what is essentially manipulative piopaganua ieliant on leveiaging
human iights abuses, while actively suppoiting a inteiventionist status quo fiom
which numeious uocumenteu abuses have oiiginateu. While the oiganization
acknowleuges that its iepoits aie unveiifieu, statistics like the one below uisplay the
cleai politicization of theii puipose:
121 The Top Ten Nyths in the Wai Against Libya, Counteipunch, August S1, 2u12
6overnment perpetrotors bove committeJ tbe mojority of tbe ottocks we´ve been
oble to trock: 61 percent, incluJinq ottocks oqoinst men onJ women, witb onotber 6
percent corrieJ out by qovernment onJ sbobibo forces toqetber. Tbese solJiers or
officers bove olleqeJly corrieJ out S8 percent of ropes oqoinst women; sbobibo
{ploinclotbes militio) ottockers 14 percent; qovernment onJ sbobibo workinq toqetber
S percent; onJ onotber or unknown ottocker 26 percent. ln 42 percent of tbe inciJents
of sexuolizeJ violence oqoinst women tbot we founJ, tbe victims were olleqeJly
ottockeJ by multiple people ot once, suqqestinq o Jisturbinqly biqb rote of qonq rope.
122
Fuithei insight into the Women 0nuei Siege oiganization can be gaineu fiom
examining the backgiounu of the gioup's founuei, feminist leauei uloiia Steinem. An
aiticle publisheu on Febiuaiy 21, 1967 in the New York Times titleu, "C.I.A.
Subsiuizeu Festival Tiips: Bunuieus of Stuuents Weie Sent to Woilu uatheiings,"
iepoits that Steinem was ieciuiteu by the CIA in 19S8 to uiiect an activist
oiganization calleu the "Inuepenuent Reseaich Seivice," intenueu to piomote left-
libeialism in opposition to Naixism.
12S
While ieceiving backing fiom the CIA,
Steinem attenueu Communist-sponsoieu youth festivals thioughout Euiope,
uistiibuteu newspapeis, iepoiteu on othei paiticipants, anu helpeu to incite iiots.
Women 0nuei Siege is a pioject of Steinem's "Women's Neuia Centei," which is itself
a spinoff of its umbiella oiganization, Ns. Founuation, which ieceives uiiect funuing
fiom ueoige Soios' 0pen Society Institute, the Foiu Founuation, Tiues Founuation,
New Yoik Life, uoogle, the 0niteu Nations, AT&T, Lifetime, the ACL0, anu otheis as
stateu in theii 2u11 Annual Repoit.
124
0nuoubteuly, Steinem's oiganization is co-
facilitating the agenua of the 0S State Bepaitment, the National Enuowment foi
Bemociacy, anu the vaiious intelligence anu militaiy agencies involveu in
uestabilizing Syiia anu toppling its goveinment.
The uuplicitous euitoiial policies of Westein mainstieam meuia institutions anu
affiliateu Nu0s have woikeu to pioject a veision of ieality entiiely fiienuly to
Ameiican foieign policy objectives, incluuing the conuemnation of countiies that
stoou against inteinational iesolutions manuating inteivention in Syiia. Amnesty
lnternotionol´s campaign, "Russia: No Noie Excuses, Stanu 0p Against Bloousheu in
Syiia," encouiageu ieaueis to senu pie-wiitten messages to Russian Foieign Ninistei
Seigei Laviov anu Ambassauoi Seigey Kislyak, uiging them to halt aims shipments
to the Syiian goveinment anu enuoise an Inteinational Ciiminal Couit inuictment
against Bashai al-Assau:
l oppeol to you to ensure tbot tbe Security Council refers Syrio to tbe lnternotionol
Criminol Court for crimes oqoinst bumonity onJ otber violotions of internotionol low;
122 The ultimate assault: Chaiting Syiia's use of iape to teiioiize its people, Women 0nuei Siege,
}uly 11, 2u12
12S C.I.A. Subsiuizeu Festival Tiips: Bunuieus of Stuuents Weie Sent to Woilu uatheiings, The New
Yoik Times, Febiuaiy 21, 1967
124 2u11 Annual Repoit, Ns. Founuation, 2u12
freezes tbe ossets of PresiJent Bosbor ol-AssoJ onJ bis close ossociotes; onJ imposes on
immeJiote orms emborqo on Syrio.
12S
While the iuea of an aims embaigo against Syiia may initially sounu plausible, the
conuuct of intelligence agencies such as the CIA anu othei suppoiteis of Syiia's
aimeu insuigents unwaveiingly confiims that such an embaigo woulu be maiginally
implementeu anu completely uisiegaiueu with iespect to aiming insuigents.
Amnesty lnternotionol peiveisely attempts to twist aiounu violence anu uniest
cleaily fomenteu by the coveit Westein anu uulf piesence insiue Syiia as somehow
the iesult of Russia's iefusal to capitulate in the face of anothei NAT0 inteivention.
Amnesty's iepoit cites the fabiicateu ueath toll piouuceu by the 0N baseu solely on
Syiian opposition claims, befoie bemoaning the positioning of Syiian tioops anu
equipment in anu aiounu the city of Boms, which was known to be a piominent base
of opeiations foi heavily aimeu militants woiking against Syiian secuiity foices. As
oiganizations like Amnesty lnternotionol (iecipients of funuing uiiectly fiom the 0S
State Bepaitment) naively auuiess theii ieaueiship with statements like, "Bonate
Now: Fight bau guys with eveiy uollai," posing ihetoiical questions such as, "Bow
many moie victims must suffei befoie Russia takes a uecisive stance against ciimes
against humanity in Syiia." it becomes appaient that Amnesty lnternotionol is
woiking in contiauiction of theii own mission statement to "piotect people
wheievei justice, fieeuom, tiuth anu uignity aie uenieu."
Suzanne Nossel, Executive Biiectoi of Amnesty lnternotionol, hau just finisheu a
stint as Beputy Assistant Secietaiy foi Inteinational 0iganizations at the 0S State
Bepaitment befoie being appointeu as heau of Amnesty ; she was also vice-piesiuent
of stiategy anu opeiations foi the Woll Street }ournol, anu a meuia anu enteitainment
consultant at NcKinsey & Company (a Council on Foieign Relations "founuing"
coipoiate membei).
126
0pon closei examination of Amnesty lnternotionol anu similai
oiganizations, it iemains bewilueiing that such institutions can be consiueieu
impaitial, when those who cleaily iepiesent Ameiican foieign policy inteiests
constitute the gioups' auministiation. Fuitheimoie, Amnesty lnternotionol ieceives
funuing fiom ueoige Soios' 0pen Society Institute, as well as the 0K Bepaitment foi
Inteinational Bevelopment, the Euiopean Commission anu othei coipoiate-funueu
founuations.
127
These staggeiing conflicts of inteiest aiise fiom oiganizations,
funueu anu iun by iepiesentatives of Westein goveinments anu coipoiations, which
uisingenuously leveiage noble causes, such as the pieeminence of human iights, to
caiiy out a self-seiving political agenua.
0n Nay 28, 2u12, the BBC woulu aumit to using a photogiaph taken of a 2uuS
massacie in Iiaq foi theii uepiction of the massacie in Boula, Syiia, piompting the
photogiaphei who took the oiiginal photo, Naico ui Lauio, to state, "someone is
12S Russia: No Noie Excuses, Stanu 0p Against Bloousheu in Syiia, Amnesty Inteinational, 2u12
126 Billaiy Clinton aiue at the helm of Amnesty Inteinational 0SA, voltaiieNet, Novembei 2S, 2u11
127 Repoit anu financial statements foi the yeai enueu S1 Naich 2u11, Amnesty Inteinational,
2u11
using someone else's pictuie foi piopaganua on puipose." An aiticle publisheu by
the Teleqropb in iesponse to the situation stateu :
Pbotoqropber Horco Ji louro soiJ be neorly "fell off bis cboir" wben be sow tbe
imoqe beinq useJ, onJ soiJ be wos "ostonisbeJ" ot tbe foilure of tbe corporotion to
cbeck tbeir sources. Tbe picture, wbicb wos octuolly token on Horcb 27, 200S, sbows o
younq lroqi cbilJ jumpinq over Jozens of wbite boJy boqs contoininq skeletons founJ
in o Jesert soutb of BoqbJoJ. lt wos posteJ on tbe BBC news website toJoy unJer tbe
beoJinq "Syrio mossocre in Eoulo conJemneJ os outroqe qrows". Tbe coption stotes tbe
pbotoqropb wos proviJeJ by on octivist onJ connot be inJepenJently verifieJ, but soys
it is "believeJ to sbow tbe boJies of cbilJren in Eoulo owoitinq buriol."
128
This inciuent fuithei encouiages skepticism of unveiifieu "eviuence" biought
foith by "pio-uemociacy activists," once again challenging the veiacity of the
uominant naiiative shaping the Syiian ciisis. Following the inteinational hysteiia
cieateu by the Boula massacie, outlets such as the 6uorJion accuseu the Syiian
militaiy of "shelling" victims in theii homes as iepoiteu in an aiticle titleu, "Syiia
shelling 'kills at least 9u,'" containing a statement by 0K Foieign 0ffice Ninistei
Alistaii Buit claiming the ueaths weie the iesult of aitilleiy.
129
Following a iepoit
fiom the Russian Foieign Ninistiy piesenting eviuence that membeis of the
opposition took pait in the massacie by employing the use of shoit-iange weaponiy,
the 6uorJion shifteu its naiiative in the aiticle, "Boula massacie suivivoi tells how
his family weie slaughteieu," familiaily citing anonymous accounts of villageis
cieuiting membeis of pio-goveinment paiamilitaiies with the slaughtei.
1Su

1S1
The
emotionally manipulative naiiative comes stiaight fiom a nameless boy allegeuly
piouuceu by "a town eluei who is a membei of the Syiian Revolutionaiy Council,"
befoie stating "We aie unable to inuepenuently veiify the account anu have chosen
not to name the boy foi secuiity ieasons."
While the testimony put foith by this witness is unueniably haiiowing, the
6uorJion's ieviseu account specifically cites the nameless boy supplieu by the
opposition, who claims to have seen Syiian tioops uismount fiom theii tanks anu kill
his entiie family in fiont of him. Paiauoxically, the 6uorJion then claims they weien't
tioops, but iathei "al-Shabiha" iiiegulai foices that uismounteu fiom aimoieu
vehicles with "guns anu knives." Answeiing a question as to how the witness knew
the gunmen weie pio-iegime militiamen, he iesponueu, "Why aie you asking me
who they weie. I know who they weie. We all know it. They weie the iegime aimy
anu people who fight with them. That is tiue." The 6uorJion's iepoit faileu to
coiioboiate oi veiify any of the claims piesenteu by the anonymous young witness.
Similaily, the 6uorJion claims in the aiticle, "I saw massacie of chiluien, says
128 BBC News uses 'Iiaq photo to illustiate Syiian massacie,' The Telegiaph, Nay 27, 2u12
129 Syiia shelling 'kills at least 9u, The uuaiuian, Nay 26, 2u12
1Su Both paities guilty in Boula massacie - Laviov, Russia Touay, Nay 28, 2u12
1S1 Boula massacie suivivoi tells how his family weie slaughteieu, The uuaiuian, Nay 28, 2u12
uefecting Syiian aii foice officei," that long-beaiueu men with shaveu heaus weie
obseiveu by an allegeu "Aii Foice officei" fiom insiue his house some Suu meteis
away, stoiming the village of Boula, Syiia scieaming, "Shabiha foievei, foi youi eyes,
Assau." The 6uorJion claims this tenuous naiiative constitutes "ciucial eviuence on
the Boula killings."
The officei claims he saw militants iiuing in "cais anu aimy tiucks anu on
motoibikes," which contiauicts the testimony of the pievious witness the 6uorJion
has piouuceu, who maintains that militants uismounteu fiom tanks anu aimoieu
tianspoits to caiiy out the killings. "'They came in aimoieu vehicles anu theie weie
some tanks,' saiu the boy." This uisciepancy is nevei explaineu, anu the 6uorJion is
unable to confiim the iuentity of the beaiueu men, the officei's iuentity anu his stoiy.
Auuitionally, the 6uorJion fails to explain how, fiom Suu meteis insiue his home, the
"officei" was able to uiscein the iuentity of the men, what they weie uoing, oi heai
what they weie saying. Suu meteis (appioximately the length of thiee football fielus)
is beyonu the iange of both a human's ability to uiscein what a human voice is
saying, as well as beyonu the ability foi human eyes to positively iuentify stiangeis
as belonging to one gioup of militants oi anothei. Accoiuing to 6uorJion's "uefecteu
officei," he was able to uiscein the unfoluing events fiom such a uistance, with
aitilleiy anu assault iifles fiiing, no less. Thioughout the ciisis in Syiia, both the
6uorJion anu the BBC have uemonstiatively faileu to pioviue any actual eviuence to
back the naiiative they have been iiiesponsibly iepoiteu in Boula.
1S2

A uistuibing anu veiy telling inciuent that unfolueu in eaily }une 2u12 saw Biitish
Cbonnel 4´s Alex Thomson - one of the few Westein jouinalists not only in Syiia
legally, but attempting to covei both siues of the conflict - puiposefully leu by iebels
into a tiap uesigneu to have him anu his team killeu by goveinment tioops in oiuei
to use his ueath as piopaganua. "Set up to be shot in Syiia's no man's lanu." featuieu
on Thomson's peisonal Cbonnel 4 blog uesciibes a tale of violence on both siues,
with attempts to inteiview belligeients on both siues of the Syiian conflict, veiy
unchaiacteiistic of Westein anu paiticulaily Biitish meuia coveiage. Thomson's
naiiative uesciibes what appeais to be a bifuication between "iebel" foices, stating
that while oiganizeu fighteis that appeai to solely commit to fighting the Syiian
Aimy, theie appeais to be a moie insiuious "thiiu paity" involveu, a thiiu paity
implicateu by Thomson as having intentionally leu him anu his team into a ueauly
tiap. This is a naiiative that coiioboiates statements maue by the Syiian
goveinment itself, as well as inuepenuent geopolitical analysts fiom aiounu the
woilu - that theie exists a substantial thiiu paity, consisting of foieign meicenaiies
anu sectaiian extiemists caiiying out the bulk of the violence anu atiocities.
Thomson uesciibes his oiueal aftei accompanying 0N monitois out to "Fiee Syiian
Aimy" helu teiiitoiy:
We JeciJe to osk for on escort out tbe sofe woy we come in. Botb siJes, botb
cbeckpoints will remember our vebicle. SuJJenly four men in o block cor beckon us to
follow. We move out bebinJ. We ore leJ onotber route. leJ in foct, stroiqbt into o free-
fire zone. TolJ by tbe Iree Syrion Army to follow o rooJ tbot wos blockeJ off in tbe
miJJle of no-mon´s-lonJ. At tbot point tbere wos tbe crock of o bullet onJ one of tbe
1S2 I saw massacie of chiluien, says uefecting Syiian aii foice officei, The uuaiuian, }une u2, 2u12
slower tbree-point turns l´ve experienceJ. We screomeJ off into tbe neorest siJe street
for cover. Anotber JeoJ-enJ. Tbere wos no option but to Jrive bock out onto tbe snipinq
qrounJ onJ floor it bock to tbe rooJ we´J been leJ in on. PreJictobly tbe block cor wos
tbere wbicb boJ leJ us to tbe trop. Tbey rooreJ off os soon os we re-oppeoreJ. l´m quite
cleor tbe rebels Jeliberotely set us up to be sbot by tbe Syrion Army. BeoJ journos ore
boJ for Bomoscus. ln o wor wbere tbey slit tbe tbroots of toJJlers bock to tbe spine,
wbot´s tbe biq Jeol in senJinq o von full of journolists into tbe killinq zone? lt wos
notbinq personol.
1SS
The obvious question that comes to minu upon ieauing Thomson's account, is
that if iebels aie willing kill foieign jouinalists foi piopaganua value just to blame
the ueaths on the Syiian goveinment, why woulun't they kill men, women anu
chiluien to blame on the Syiian goveinment as well. Peihaps the most uuplicitous
case of meuia manipulation in Syiia was uncoveieu by Fiench jouinalist Thieiiy
Neyssan, in his }une, 2u12 aiticle, NAT0 Piepaiing vast uisinfoimation campaign,
wheie an intelligence opeiation aiming to ieplace Syiian state Tv bioaucasts with
fabiicateu footage filmeu on sounu stages in Boha & Riyauh is uesciibeu:
ln o few Joys, perbops os eorly os IriJoy, }une 1S, ot noon, tbe Syrions wontinq to
wotcb tbeir notionol Tv stotions will see tbem reploceJ on tbeir screens by Tv
proqroms creoteJ by tbe ClA. StuJio-sbot imoqes will sbow mossocres tbot ore blomeJ
on tbe Syrion 6overnment, people Jemonstrotinq, ministers onJ qenerols resiqninq
from tbeir posts, PresiJent Al-AssoJ fleeinq, tbe rebels qotberinq in tbe biq city centers,
onJ o new qovernment instollinq itself in tbe presiJentiol poloce. Tbis operotion of
Jisinformotion, Jirectly monoqeJ from Wosbinqton by Ben RboJes, tbe 0S Jeputy
notionol security oJviser for stroteqic communicotion, oims ot Jemorolizinq tbe
Syrions in orJer to pove tbe woy for o coup J´etot. NAT0, Jiscontent obout tbe Jouble
veto of Russio onJ Cbino, will tbus succeeJ in conquerinq Syrio witbout ottockinq tbe
country illeqolly. Wbicbever juJqment you miqbt bove formeJ on tbe octuol events in
Syrio, o coup J´etot will enJ oll bopes of Jemocrotizotion.
Tbe Arob leoque bos officiolly oskeJ tbe sotellite operotors Arobsot onJ Nilesot to
stop brooJcostinq Syrion meJio, eitber public or privote {Syrio Tv, Al-Fkboriyo, AJ-
Bounio, Cbom Tv, etc.) A preceJent olreoJy exists becouse tbe Arob leoque boJ
monoqeJ to censure libyon Tv in orJer to keep tbe leoJers of tbe }omobiriyo from
communicotinq witb tbeir people. Tbere is no Eertz network in Syrio, wbere Tv works
exclusively witb sotellites. Tbe cut, bowever, will not leove tbe screens block. Actuolly,
tbis public Jecision is only tbe tip of tbe iceberq. AccorJinq to our informotion severol
internotionol meetinqs were orqonizeJ Jurinq tbe post week to coorJinote tbe
Jisinformotion compoiqn. Tbe first two were tecbnicol meetinqs, belJ in Bobo {µotor);
tbe tbirJ wos o politicol meetinq onJ took ploce in RiyoJb {SouJi Arobio). Tbe first
meetinq ossembleJ PSY0P officers, embeJJeJ in tbe sotellite Tv cbonnels of Al-Arobiyo,
Al-}ozeero, BBC, CNN, Iox, Ironce 24, Iuture Tv onJ HTv. lt is known tbot since 1998,
tbe officers of tbe 0S Army Psycboloqicol 0perotions 0nit {PSY0P) bove been
incorporoteJ in CNN. Since tben tbis proctice bos been extenJeJ by NAT0 to otber
stroteqic meJio os well.
1SS Set up to be shot in Syiia's no man's lanu. Channel 4 News, }une 8, 2u12
Tbey fobricoteJ folse informotion in oJvonce, on tbe bosis of o "story-tellinq" script
JeviseJ by Ben RboJes´s teom ot tbe Wbite Eouse. A proceJure of reciprocol voliJotion
wos instolleJ, witb eocb meJio quotinq tbe lies of tbe otber meJio to renJer tbem
plousible for Tv spectotors. Tbe porticiponts olso JeciJeJ not only to requisition tbe Tv
cbonnels of tbe ClA for Syrio onJ lebonon {BoroJo, Iuture Tv, HTv, 0rient News, Syrio
Cboob, Syrio AlqboJ) but olso obout 40 reliqious Wobbobi Tv cbonnels to coll for
confessionol mossocres to tbe cry of "Cbristions to Beyroutb, Alowites into tbe qrove!"
ln 2011, Ironce 24 serveJ os informotion ministry for tbe libyon CNT, occorJinq to o
siqneJ controct. Burinq tbe bottle of Tripoli, NAT0 proJuceJ foke stuJio films, tben
tronsmitteJ tbem vio Al-}ozeero onJ Al-Arobiyo, sbowinq pbontom imoqes of libyon
rebels on tbe centrol squore of tbe copitol city, wbile in reolity tbey were still for owoy.
As o consequence, tbe inbobitonts of Tripoli were persuoJeJ tbot tbe wor wos lost onJ
qove up oll resistonce. NowoJoys tbe meJio Jo not only support o wor, tbey proJuce it
tbemselves.
1S4

Neyssan's giounubieaking iepoit pioviues valuable insight into the iole of the
mainstieam meuia anu its capacity to piopagate an entiiely fictitious naiiative in
suppoit of militant foieign policy aimeu at toppling goveinments in non-compliant
states. Bue to incieaseu calls to satellite opeiatois by the Aiab League iequesting the
Nilesat anu Aiabsat satellites stop bioaucasting Syiian Tv channels, the Syiian
goveinment accuseu gioups of tiying to mute the voice of the Syiian people anu
succeeueu in halting the opeiation.
1SS
In late }une 2u12, Syiian iebels attackeu anu
killeu seven employees (incluuing thiee jouinalists) at the Syiian ol-lkbboryio
Satellite Channel some 2u kilometeis south of Bamascus .
1S6
Rebels uestioyeu the
stuuios with explosives, in an attack seen as an extension of the uecision taken by the
Euiopean 0nion on the pievious uay to impose sanctions on Syiian iauio anu
television oiganizations. 0nuoubteuly, hau Syiian Piesiuent Bashai al-Assau's foices
kiunappeu anu muiueieu jouinalists sympathetic to the West's naiiative - ielentless
accusations of "ciimes against humanity," iefeiials to the West's myiiau of
"inteinational institutions," anu self-pioclaimeu inteinational aibiteis woulu have
followeu. Bowevei, the peipetiatois aie insteau teiioiists ieceiving NAT0 backing, in
an attack celebiateu iathei than conuemneu by the Westein piess, with Reuters
uesciibing the inciuent as "one of the boluest attacks yet on a symbol of the
authoiitaiian state."
1S7
}ouinalist Thieiiy Neyssan iepoiteu fiom the scene of the
uestioyeu stuuios, anu was quoteu as stating:
ln tbe meJio wor tbot tokes ploce orounJ Syrio, you´re probobly wonJerinq wbo is
tellinq tbe trutb. ln tbe bockqrounJ, tbere ore tbose wbo soy tbot tbis country is tbe
1S4 NAT0 piepaiing vast uisinfoimation campaign, voltaiieNet, }une 11, 2u12
1SS News Analysis: Syiia's Assau faces full wai, XinhuaNet, }une 28, 2u12
1S6 Attack Bestioys Pio-uoveinment Tv Station Neai Bamascus, The New Yoik Times, }une 27,
2u12
1S7 Rebels stoim Pio-Assau Syiian Tv channel, Reuteis, }une 27, 2u12
subject of on internol revolution onJ o terrible repression, onJ tbose wbo soy insteoJ
tbot tbis country is ottockeJ by foreiqn powers wbo bove sent in ormies of mercenories
onJ sopbisticoteJ commonJos wbo enqoqe in Jestruction of infrostructure onJ
torqeteJ ossossinotions. To unJerstonJ wbot is boppeninq, you must remember tbe
propoqonJo system. PropoqonJo consists of intoxicotion from one siJe of tbe story
qivinq you folse informotion, onJ on tbe otber siJe, you ore preventeJ from receivinq
conflictinq informotion. Ior tbis to occur, tbe controJictory meJio must be censoreJ
onJ JestroyeJ.
In the miust of an unfetteieu meuia wai, hackeis allegeuly woiking inuepenuently
insiue Syiia have hackeu Westein meuia outlets anu agencies such as Al-}ozeero in an
attempt to countei the uominant meuia naiiative. The piominent hackei-iing known
as the Syiian Electionic Aimy has boluly uenounceu Al-}ozeero foi bioaucasting
"false anu fabiicateu news to ignite seuition among the people of Syiia to achieve the
goals of Washington anu Tel Aviv," culminating in taigeteu cybei attacks on Al-
}ozeero´s "Syiia Live Blog", which pioviues ongoing coveiage of the uniest, anu Al-
}ozeero´s 'Stieam' Twitter account.
1S8
In an attack conuucteu in eaily }uly 2u12,
hackeis gaineu access to the Twitter account anu began senuing out stoiies
publisheu by the alteinative meuia, incluuing viueos allegeuly uepicting membeis of
the opposition toituiing, executing, anu beheauing Syiian militaiy peisonnel anu
civilians on the basis of being ieligious minoiities anu Assau loyalists. In a iecent
inteiview conuucteu by a jouinalist fiom the Buffington Post, the anonymous leauei
of the Syiian Electionic Aimy claims his gioup opeiates inuepenuently of the Syiian
goveinment stating, "We aie not suppoiteu by anyone - we staiteu this woik since
1S Naich 2u11 when we have seen a laige numbeis of teiioiists spieau aiounu oui
countiy - so we ueciueu to uefenu oui countiy."
1S9
0n }uly 1Sth, 2u12, ovei 1uu people weie slaughteieu in the village of Tiemseh, a
village of 11,uuu people about 22 miles noithwest of Bama. Activists iepoiteu the
Syiian goveinment's use of aitilleiy, tanks anu helicopteis, insinuating that state
foices weie behinu the massacie. 0pon the initial fiist iepoits issueu by meuia
outlets, the 0niteu States' 0N Ambassauoi Susan Rice posteu on hei Twitter account,
"Repoits of Tiaymseh massacie aie nightmaiish - uiamatically illustiate the neeu foi
binuing 0NSC measuies on Syiia."
Ambassauoi Rice scoineu the Syiian state anu thieateneu its goveinment with
fuithei 0N Resolutions piioi to the aiiival of any 0N monitoiing peisonnel to the
aiea, befoie any semblance of an investigation hau been conuucteu - even piioi to
any photogiaphy oi viueo suifacing. This immeuiate accusation of state foices
ieflects the ueceit anu fiauuulence of 0S leaueiship anu the cuiient state of
inteinational justice unuei the Inteinational Ciiminal Couit, an oiganization only
willing to inuict those unfiienuly to the piivate geopolitical anu geo-economic
objectives of Westein capitals. In Tiemseh, eyewitness accounts biought foith by Al-
1S8 Pio-goveinment hactivists ueface Al }azeeia coveiage of Syiian violence, Ais Technica,
}anuiaiy Su, 2u12
1S9 Syiian Electionic Aimy Leauei: Cybei-Wai to Continue Against Those "Bistoiting the Tiuth
About Syiia," The Buffington Post, Apiil 2S, 2u12
}ozeero claim goveinment tioops openeu fiie in ietaliation, aftei the FSA attackeu a
neighboiing Alawite village. Syiia's SANA News iepoiteu the captuie of 4 heavily
aimeu non-Syiian Aiab nationals who weie oiueieu to attack militaiy anu police
checkpoints anu pievent state employees fiom going to woik by sowing chaos.
14u

Following the events in Tiemseh, Syiian militaiy foices on the scene seizeu an
opposition weapons cache stockeu with machine guns, snipei iifles, RPu launcheis,
moitais, explosive uevices, gas masks, binoculais, satellite wiieless uevices, viueo
cameias, laige amounts of gunpowuei, TNT templates, anu highly explosive C4
mateiial.
141
The New York Times´ }uly 14, 2u12 aiticle titleu, "Betails of a Battle Challenge
Repoits of a Syiian Nassacie," claims that iepoits of a massacie in Tiemseh weie
moie accuiately clashes between the heavily aimeu Syiian militaiy anu local
opposition fighteis wieluing light weapons, with the lattei beaiing the majoiity of
casualties. Theie weie iepoiteuly no women among the ueau in Tiemseh, while a list
publisheu by the Syiian National Council, cites that casualties weie men between 19
anu S6. Tiemseh hau allegeuly been a iegional base of opeiations foi 2uu to Suu
militant fighteis foi a peiiou of 2u uays piioi to the outbieak of violence. The New
York Times Repoit fuithei states:
After tbe biqb toll wos onnounceJ from Tremseb, os wos tbe cose witb Eoulo onJ
otber similor episoJes, Western leoJers lineJ up to conJemn tbe moss killinqs of
civilions. Col. RioJ ol-AssoJ, boseJ in Turkey os tbe ostensible leoJer of tbe loose
coolition of fiqbters colleJ tbe Iree Syrion Army, tolJ tbe Arobic television network Al
}ozeero on TbursJoy tbot tbere boJ been no opposition fiqbters in tbe town. Altbouqb
wbot octuolly boppeneJ in Tremseb remoins murky, tbe eviJence ovoiloble suqqesteJ
tbot events on TbursJoy more closely followeJ tbe Syrion qovernment occount. But
Syrion officiols coloreJ tbot occount witb tbeir usuol terminoloqy of blominq "foreiqn
terrorist qonqs" for oll violence. Tbe qovernment soiJ tbe Syrion Army boJ inflicteJ
"beovy losses" on tbe "terrorists."
142
Befections of membeis of the Syiian goveinment holuing high positions weie few
anu fai between thioughout the ciisis, only aftei the seventeenth month of the
conflict weie notable uefections iepoiteu. 0ne such senioi official, Nawaf Faies, a
foimei secuiity chief anu Syiia's ambassauoi to Iiaq now haiboieu in Qatai,
uiamatically uefecteu by publishing a viueo message uiging otheis to follow his
example. In an inteiview with the Teleqropb , Faies aumits that }ihaui units that he
himself helpeu Bamascus senu to fight the Ameiican occupation in neighboiing Iiaq
weie involveu in the stiing of ueauly suiciue bomb attacks in Syiia.
14S
Bowevei, Faies
14u Foui Teiioiists fiom al-Tieimseh: uunmen Weie 0iueieu to Spieau Acioss the Town Befoie
Aimy Foices Enteieu It, SANA News, }uly 1S, 2u12
141 The Aimeu Foices Caiiy out "Qualitative 0peiation" in al-Tieismeh anu Causes Beavy Losses
among Teiioiists, SANA News, }uly 1S, 2u12
142 Betails of a Battle Challenge Repoits of a Syiian Nassacie, The New Yoik Times' }uly 14, 2u12
14S Exclusive inteiview: why I uefecteu fiom Bashai al-Assau's iegime, by foimei uiplomat Nawaf
Faies, The Telegiaph, }uly 14, 2u12
accuses the Syiian goveinment itself of oichestiating false flag teiioiist attacks in
the foim of suiciue bombings on its own goveinment builuings in an attempt to
inciiminate iebel foices. Conflicting iepoits publisheu by mainstieam outlets
confiim that foieign Al Qaeua aligneu fighteis have inuepenuently ciosseu into Syiia,
simply noting heaulines such as "Al Qaeua heau calls foi fall of Assau" (AP), "Top 0S
official: Al Qaeua in Iiaq joining fight against Syiia's Assau" (HcClotcby), anu "Al
Qaeua's Zawahiii calls foi wai to oust Syiia's Assau" (AP). Such heaulines illustiate
the absuiuity of Faies' claims of Piesiuent Bashai al-Assau "collaboiating" with Al
Qaeua in a conspiiacy to accuse opposition foices foi the ensuing atiocities.
Not only uiu Faies fail to pioviue any eviuence that "Al Qaeua" has cooiuinateu its
bombing campaigns with Syiian secuiity foices, but his claim uiiectly contiauicts
months of iepoiting, such as Reuteis' Apiil 2u12 exposé coveiing the Fiee Syiian
Aimy's "tactical switch" to teiioiist bombings in the face of supeiioi militaiy
weapons anu tactics employeu by goveinment secuiity foices. The aiticle explaineu
that Syiian extiemists who hau honeu theii skills fighting 0S anu Biitish tioops in
Iiaq hau joineu the ianks of the FSA to employ theii bomb-making abilities against,
not in collaboiation with, the Syiian goveinment. Nawaf Faies comes acioss as an
exaggeiating oppoitunist, so oveily eagei to play his iole that he has tiippeu ovei
himself anu founu both feet lougeu fiimly in his mouth. Faies abanuoneu a "iegime"
he finus unbeaiable, which he claims suppoiteu "}ihaui units" caiiying out a teiioiist
bombing campaign against its own people, only to join a militant oiganization that
has uemonstiatively anu aumitteuly caiiieu out bombing campaigns against the
Syiian people. In a timely piece, the Teleqropb iepoits that extiemist fighteis
attempting to founu Islamic caliphates have been opeiating openly in some aieas of
Iulib anu Aleppo piovinces that stiauule the boiueis of Tuikey anu Iiaq, wheie Al
Qaeua's flags have been seen flying:
"An ol µoeJo qroup leJ by o mon wbo colleJ bimself Abu SoJJiq took control in Ber
Tezzeb," soiJ one ISA rebel speokinq on conJition of ononymity. "l wos o member of tbe
Revolution Council tbere. SuJJenly tbere wos o new woy of tbinkinq. Abu SoJJiq wos
instolleJ os tbe ´Fmir´, or ´Prince´ of tbe oreo for tbree montbs. l wos tolJ to put my
bonJ on tbe Koron onJ to obey bim. "Ee wonteJ to builJ o reliqious country. Ee JiJ not
wont Jemocrocy but o reliqious leoJer in power. Ee wonteJ to use suiciJe bombers os o
woy of fiqbtinq qovernment troops in tbe oreo."
144
}ust as in Libya, wheie foimei officials unuei uauuafi embiaceu the opposition
National Tiansition Council, it iemains highly plausible that the uefection of senioi
officials in Syiia is motivateu by those iepiesentatives ieceiving gieatei benefits anu
positions in the futuie by coopeiating with the inteinationally iecognizeu Syiian
National Council opposition paity. While the Syiian National Council is fai fiom the
only opposition gioup, its iepiesentatives anu spokespeople aie the most
acknowleugeu uue to theii acquiescence anu ueep connections with Westein think-
thanks anu policy makeis, piompting Biitish Foieign Ninistei William Bague to
ueclaie:
144 Al-Qaeua tiies to caive out a wai foi itself in Syiia, The Telegiaph, }uly 12, 2u12
"l will meet leoJers of tbe Syrion Notionol Council in o few minutes´ time . We, in
common witb otber notions, will now treot tbem onJ recoqnize tbem os o leqitimote
representotive of tbe Syrion people."
14S
}ouinalist Chailie Skelton's }uly 2u12 exposé, "The Syiian opposition: who's uoing
the talking." publisheu in the 6uorJion, uetails the intimate connections between
senioi membeis of the Syiian National Council who have been piesent at piivate
gatheiings such as the annual meetings conuucteu by the Bilueibeig uioup, anu the
West's most piestigious policy institutions anu think-tanks.
146
0ne such inuiviuual is
Fiench-Syiian acauemic Bassma Koumani, a senioi official spokespeison foi the
Syiian National Council who fleu Syiia with hei family at age ten following 1967's
Six-Bay Wai. Koumani has since settleu between Lonuon, Paiis, anu Egypt, wheie she
leu the uoveinance anu Inteinational Coopeiation piogiam foi the Niuule East anu
Noith Afiica at the Foiu Founuation. Bassma Koumani was installeu as executive
uiiectoi of a ieseaich initiative establisheu by the 0S-baseu Council on Foieign
Relations, the Aiab Refoim Initiative (ARI), in Septembei 2uuS, an institute aimeu at
piomoting "iefoim anu uemociatization in the Aiab woilu." Noie specifically, the
ARI was founueu by a subgioup of senioi uiplomats, intelligence officeis anu
financieis within the Council on Foieign Relations' "0S¡Niuule East Pioject," chaiieu
by foimei 0S National Secuiity Auvisoi Bient Scowcioft. Accoiuingly, Koumani is
ieseaich uiiectoi at the Acauémie Biplomatique Inteinationale, heaueu by }ean-
Clauue Cousseian, foimei heau of the Fiench intelligence seivice Biiection uénéiale
ue la Sécuiité Extéiieuie.
In Febiuaiy 2u12, she was subjecteu to contioveisy foi pieviously uefenuing
Isiael on Fiench television in 2uu8 stating, "We neeu Isiael in the iegion." Although
Koumani waineu she woulu latei ietiact those statements, citing the opposition hau
to iely on eithei the "gieatei militaiization of local iesistance oi foieign
inteivention," claiming that "no uialogue with the iuling iegime is possible. We can
only uiscuss how to move on to a uiffeient political system."
147
Koumani woulu latei
be quoteu by AIP stating, "The next step neeus to be a iesolution unuei Chaptei vII,
which allows foi the use of all legitimate means, coeicive means, embaigo on aims,
as well as the use of foice to oblige the iegime to comply." Willingness to call foi
foieign militaiy inteivention appeais to be a uemanuing iequisite of Syiian National
Council officials, such as Ausama Nonajeu, who is uesciibeu on the SNC's website as
being "wiuely quoteu anu inteivieweu in piestigious inteinational meuia outlets
incluuing the Woll Street }ournol, New York Times, The Wosbinqton Post, los Anqeles
Times, Ioreiqn Policy Hoqozine, 0SA ToJoy," anu otheis.
Nonajeu's }uly 2u12 op-eu in the Euffinqton Post titleu, "The Piice of Apathy: Why
the Woilu Nust Inteivene in Syiia," aigueu that the inteinational community "has a
14S Syiia: Qatai calls foi Aiab foice to impose peace - Fiiuay 24 Febiuaiy, The uuaiuian, Febiuaiy
24, 2u12
146 The Syiian opposition: who's uoing the talking. The uuaiuian, }uly 12, 2u12
147 Syiia's opposition conceineu about inuepenuent aimeu iebel gioups, The Chiistian Science Nonitoi,
}anuiaiy 27, 2u12
moial obligation to help fostei a viable iesistance by establishing safe zones fiom
which opposition foices can tiain, ie-aim anu seek iefuge anu meuial assistance."
148

This uesciiption is iuentical to the Biooking Institution's Naich 2u12 Nemo, "Saving
Syiia: Assessing 0ptions foi Regime Change." Nonajeu is the founuei anu uiiectoi of
a pio-opposition satellite channel, BoroJo Television, anu the foimei uiiectoi of
public ielations with the Novement foi }ustice anu Bevelopment (N}B), which
ieceiveu as much as $6 million fiom the 0S State Bepaitment anu otheis since 2uu6,
as iepoiteu by the Wosbinqton Post .
149
Nonajeu was a panelist foi 0S-baseu Chatham
Bouse's 2uu9 event "Envisioning Syiia's Political Futuie," along with Wissam Taiif,
uiiectoi of Nauiiu-baseu Syiian human iights gioup INSAN anu SNC iepiesentative
Rauwan Ziaueh, a senioi fellow at National Council anu senioi fellow at the feueially
funueu 0S-baseu think-tank, the 0S Institute of Peace. In Febiuaiy 2u12, Ziaueh
joineu Elizabeth Cheney, Kail Rove, }ames Woolsey, anu otheis in calling foi foieign
inteivention anu economic sanctions against Syiia thiough an open lettei to
Piesiuent 0bama.
The longstanuing political anu institutional suppoit given to senioi Syiian
National Council officials uemonstiates the uisingenuous natuie of leauing figuies
within Syiia's political opposition, who have been shapeu by the piivilegeu lives
they've enjoyeu in the West. While the political system unuei the Ba'ath Paity is not
without its shoitcomings, the meie insinuation that a gioup of long-exileu, Westein-
euucateu Syiian acauemics shoulu be iecognizeu as "the legitimate iepiesentatives
of the Syiian people" as auvocateu by Biitish Foieign Ninistei William Bague anu
otheis, is nothing soit of a uecisive mockeiy of the touteu uemociatic piinciples
these inuiviuuals anu institutions claim to iepiesent. In iesponse to jouinalist
Chailie Skelton's investigative piece publisheu in the 6uorJion, the publications' own
"uiplomatic euitoi" }ulian Boigei iesponueu with, "0S manipulation of news fiom
Syiia is a ieu heiiing," a slanuei piece entiiely ieliant on bianuing Skelton a
"conspiiacy theoiist." While Boigei fails to ciitically assess any of the finuings
auuiesseu in Skelton's aiticle, he familiaily beiates the authoi with tiieu
insinuations of belief in "shauowy foices," in a mannei typical of acauemic elitism
anu euitoiial conuescension. Boigei associates Skelton with histoiian anu acauemic
Webstei Taipley, anu attempts to uiscieuit them on the basis of questioning the
official account of events on Septembei 11th, 2uu1, befoie tiumpeting the uominant
naiiative in Syiia - that an oppiessive goveinment is iemoiselessly caiiieu out a
slaughtei - anu calling on the skeweu Inteinational Ciiminal Couit to investigate the
situation.
1Su

If these exhausteu iebuttals aie inuicative of anything, it is that those inuiviuuals,
intellectuals, acauemics, analysts, expeits, commentatois anu news outlets aie
unwilling to auuiess anu seiiously acknowleuge the enoimous uisciepancies
148 The Piice of Apathy: Why the Woilu Nust Inteivene in Syiia, The Buffington Post, }uly u7, 2u12
149 0.S. secietly backeu Syiian opposition gioups, cables ieleaseu by WikiLeaks show, The Washington Post,
Apiil 18, 2u11
1Su 0S manipulation of news fiom Syiia is a ieu heiiing, The uuaiuian, }uly 1S, 2u12
embeuueu within the uominate naiiative of events in Syiia. Theii musings ieflect
theii own peisonal weakness, conceit, anu uishonesty. 0nuoubteuly, the conuuct of
the coipoiate news meuia in collaboiation with compiomiseu Nu0s, fiont gioups foi
Westein intelligence, anu the 0niteu Nations, constitutes a biazen attempt to
sabotage a soveieign nation by methouically piesenting a ueeply uishonest anu
iecycleu naiiative to the woilu. The meuia wai being wageu on Syiia has been a vital
component of the conflict, peihaps being the only means of publically legitimizing
the opposition in an effoit to topple the Syiian goveinment. While some of the
witness accounts coming fiom Syiia may holu valiuity, the inconsistencies of those
testimonies anu the way in which oiganizations like the 0niteu Nations obscuie such
accounts with blanketing confiuentiality only seive to fuithei suspicions of
fabiication anu uuplicity at the institutional level. As moie anu moie people begin to
question the cieuibility anu accuiacy of mainstieam news meuia, theii coveiage of
events in Syiia ieflects not only a ueeply flaweu euitoiial policy, but also theii
commitment to fully aiuing militaiistic ventuies at the expense of millions of lives
aiounu the woilu. While the alteinative meuia stiuggles with its limitations anu is
not without its shoitcomings, inuepenuent jouinalists anu political analysts have
succeeueu in exposing the insiuiousness anu intellectual uishonesty of the uominant
naiiative in an attempt to question anu ciitically assess what the woilu has been tolu
about the Syiian ciisis. It is only with euitoiial tianspaiency, jouinalistic integiity,
anu simple honesty that such conflicts in the futuie may be similaily exposeu anu
aveiteu.
{}uly 1S
tb
, 2012)
Cbapter 3: Tbe Prospect of Regional War
"Noturolly tbe common people Jon´t wont wor; neitber in Russio, nor in FnqlonJ,
nor in Americo, nor in 6ermony. Tbot is unJerstooJ. But ofter oll, it is tbe leoJers of tbe
country wbo Jetermine policy, onJ it is olwoys o simple motter to Jroq tbe people
olonq, wbetber it is o Jemocrocy, or o foscist Jictotorsbip, or o porlioment, or o
communist Jictotorsbip. voice or no voice, tbe people con olwoys be brouqbt to tbe
biJJinq of tbe leoJers. Tbot is eosy. All you bove to Jo is to tell tbem tbey ore beinq
ottockeJ, onJ Jenounce tbe pocifists for lock of potriotism onJ exposinq tbe country to
Jonqer. lt works tbe some in ony country."
Hermann Cöring
PresiJent of tbe 6ermon Reicbstoq
Aftei a vicious uecaue of unpalatable wai anu occupation in the Niuule East, the
piospect of the Syiian ciisis intensifying into laigei iegional conflict is an alaiming
possibility. Such a wai woulu be piopagateu by manipulating sectaiian uivisions in
an effoit to sow chaos anu tiiggei the collapse of the Assau goveinment, thus
thieatening the founuations of seculai nationalism in Syiia anu inciting tensions
with Bashai-al Assau's closest uiplomatic ally, Iian. As the 0niteu States anu its allies
attempt to uestabilize Syiia, the simultaneous isolation of Iian thiough economic
sanctions, anu the incieasing Ameiican militaiy piesence in the Peisian uulf signifies
a continueu pioclivity foi wai anu foieign entanglement. Fiom Sauui Aiabia to
Tuikey, the emeiging Islamic poweis allieu with the 0niteu States have woikeu in
tanuem to assist the militant Syiian insuigency, motivateu iueologically by
aspiiations of halting the expansion of Shi'a iuentity, anu theii own ambitions of
iegional hegemony. As Isiael continues to asseit its iight to pieemptively stiike Iian,
Tel Aviv views the toppling of Bamascus as a means of extinguishing the ciitical
conuuit between Tehian anu Bezbollah, the political anu militant Shi'a oiganization
centeieu in Southein Lebanon, in a biu to isolate the Palestinian iesistance. As Syiian
iebel fighteis mount fuithei piessuie on the Assau goveinment, it must be
iemembeieu, that the ioau to Tehian goes thiough Bamascus.
The pages of the 2u1u 0S Nilitaiy Special Foices' 0nconventional Waifaie Nanual
offei fuithei insight into the insuiiectionaiy natuie of the Syiian conflict. A
publication aimeu at uefining unconventional waifaie tactics, the manual seives as a
bluepiint foi uecaues of illegally conuucteu clanuestine opeiations caiiieu out
without the appioval of the 0S Congiess. The uocument illustiates the sheei
impunity with which the 0niteu States conuucts its foieign policy, aimeu at illegally
inteifeiing in the affaiis of foieign nations in oiuei to subveit anu uestabilize them
in the name of fuitheiing Ameiican inteiests:
Tbe CommonJer, 0niteJ Stotes Speciol 0perotions CommonJ {0SS0C0H), Jefines
[0nconventionol Worfore] 0W os octivities conJucteJ to enoble o resistonce movement
or insurqency to coerce, Jisrupt, or overtbrow o qovernment or occupyinq power by
operotinq tbrouqb or witb on unJerqrounJ, ouxiliory, onJ querrillo force in o JenieJ
oreo. Tbe intent of 0.S. [0nconventionol Worfore] 0W efforts is to exploit o bostile
power´s politicol, militory, economic, onJ psycboloqicol vulnerobilities by Jevelopinq
onJ sustoininq resistonce forces to occomplisb 0.S. stroteqic objectives. Ior tbe
foreseeoble future, 0.S. forces will preJominontly enqoqe in irrequlor worfore {lW)
operotions.
1S1
The taigets of the above mentioneu iiiegulai waifaie opeiations aie those
soveieign states that have been histoiically unwilling to align themselves with
Ameiican uiplomatic anu economic inteiests. These coveit opeiations aie
meticulously oichestiateu anu conuucteu in phases; beginning with psychologically
influencing taigeteu populations. Subsequently, taigeteu nations aie infiltiateu to
pioviue tiaining anu equipment to uissiuent gioups, until a political tiansition is
foicibly imposeu:
Flgure 1-S Phuxex of Unconventlonul Wurfure
PHASF I: Prepurutlon
Resistonce onJ externol sponsors conJuct psycboloqicol preporotion to unify
populotion oqoinst estoblisbeJ qovernment or occupyinq power onJ prepore
populotion to occept 0.S. support.
PHASF II: Inltlul Contuct
0S6 [0niteJ Stotes 6overnment] oqencies coorJinote witb ollieJ qovernment-in-
exile or resistonce leoJersbip for JesireJ 0.S. support.
PHASF III: Inflltrutlon
SI [Speciol Iorces] teom infiltrotes operotionol oreo, estoblisbes communicotions
witb its bose, onJ contocts resistonce orqonizotion.
PHASF IV: Orgunlzutlon
SI [Speciol Iorces] teom orqonizes, troins, onJ equips resistonce coJre. Fmpbosis is
on Jevelopinq infrostructure.
PHASF V: BullJup
SI [Speciol Iorces] teom ossist coJre witb exponsion into on effective resistonce
orqonizotion. limiteJ combot operotions moy be conJucteJ, but empbosis remoins on
Jevelopment.
PHASF VI: Fmployment
0W [0nconventionol Worfore] forces conJuct combot operotions until linkup witb
conventionol forces or enJ bostilities.
PHASF VII: 1runxltlon
0W [0nconventionol Worfore] forces revert to notionol control, sbiftinq to requlor
forces or Jemobilizinq.
The contents of the manual constitute uniestiaineu uisiegaiu foi the piinciples of
inteinational law, national soveieignty, anu the piepaieuness oi political uesiie foi
change in those taigeteu nations. While the mainstieam meuia emphasizeu the
"spontaneity" of political ievolt in the Aiab Woilu, the contents of the 2u1u 0S
Nilitaiy Special Foices' 0nconventional Waifaie Nanual pioviue incieuible claiity
into the insuiiectionaiy natuie of iesistance foices opeiating in taiget nations. 0ne
such notable section itemizes the "stiuctuie of an insuigency oi iesistance
1S1 Special Foices 0nconventional Waifaie, Bepaitment of 0S Aimy, Novembei 2u1u
movement," peuantically uetailing the stages of uestabilization, fiom "unueigiounu
activities" to "gueiilla actions," in an attempt to unueimine the legitimacy of taiget
goveinments anu ultimately topple them:
Flgure 2-2. Structure of un lnxurgency or rexlxtunce movement
- Bissotisfoction witb Politicol, Fconomic, Sociol, AJministrotive, onJ 0tber
ConJitions; Notionol Aspirotion {lnJepenJence) or Besire for lJeoloqicol onJ 0tber
Cbonqes
- Creotinq on Atmospbere of WiJer Biscontent Tbrouqb PropoqonJo onJ Politicol
onJ Psycboloqicol Fffects to BiscreJit tbe 6overnment
- Aqitotion; Creotion of Iovoroble Public 0pinion {AJvocotinq Notionol Couse);
Creotion of Bistrust of FstoblisbeJ lnstitution
- lncreoseJ Aqitotion, 0nrest, onJ Bisoffection; lnfiltrotion of AJministrotion,
Police, Hilitory, onJ Notionol 0rqonizotions, Boycotts, SlowJowns, onJ Strikes
- lnfiltrotion of Ioreiqn 0rqonizers onJ AJvisors onJ Ioreiqn PropoqonJo,
Hoteriol, Honey, Weopons, onJ Fquipment
- Recruitment onJ Troininq of Resistonce CoJres
- Penetrotion into lobour 0nions, StuJent onJ Notionol 0rqonizotions onJ oll Ports
of Society
- SpreoJinq of Subversive 0rqonizotions into All Sectors of life of o Country
- Fstoblisbment of Notionol Iront 0rqonizotions onJ liberotion Hovements; Appeol
to Ioreiqn Sympotbizers
- Fxponsion of Iront 0rqonizotions
- lntensificotion of PropoqonJo; Psycboloqicol Perpetrotion of Populotion for
Rebellion
- 0vert onJ Covert Pressures Aqoinst 6overnment {Strikes, Riots, onJ BisorJer)
- lncreoseJ 0nJerqrounJ Activities to Bemonstrote Strenqtb of Resistonce
0rqonizotion onJ Weokness of 6overnment
- lntense Soppinq of Horole {6overnment, AJministrotion, Police, Hilitory)
- lncreoseJ Politicol violence onJ Sobotoqe
- Hinor 6uerrillo Actions
- lorqe-Scole 6uerillo Actions
In the Syiian context, the "aichitectuie of iesistance" uesciibeu by the 2u1u
0nconventional Waifaie Nanual miiiois eveiy aspect of the upiising, fiom
psychological opeiations conuucteu on taigeteu populations anu the influx of aims
anu mateiial goous, to the conuuct of the insuigent fighteis, who have inciementally
incieaseu the scale of theii opeiations against the Syiian state to waiiant labeling
theii conuuct as "Laige Scale uueiilla Actions". At minimum, the contents of the 0S
Nilitaiy uocument constitute nothing shoit of an aumission that the 0niteu States
auvocates state-sponsoieu teiioiism to achieve its foieign policy objectives of
toppling foieign states. While senioi 0S officials anu uiplomats publically tout
uemociatic piinciples, Washington's "iiiegulai waifaie" opeiations place much
emphasis on ensuiing small militant factions foicibly legitimize themselves in the
eyes of the population:
"ln olmost every scenorio, resistonce movements foce o populotion witb on octive
minority supportinq tbe qovernment onJ on equolly smoll militont foction supportinq
tbe resistonce movement. Ior tbe resistonce to succeeJ, it must convince tbe
uncommitteJ miJJle populotion.to occept it os o leqitimote entity. A possive
populotion is sometimes oll o well-supporteJ insurqency neeJs to seize politicol power."
In an age wheie the "Wai on Teiioi" is useu as a pietext to militaiily inteivene
anu occupy soveieign states, it must not be foigotten that such uisastious tactics of
"iiiegulai waifaie" weie useu to funu coalitions of fighteis known as the Nujaheuuin
- latei known as "al-Qaeua" - an oiganization whose uubious oiigins can be tiaceu
back to policy initiatives theoiizeu by foimei Secietaiy of Befense Robeit uates anu
foimei National Secuiity Auvisei Zbigniew Bizezinski uuiing the Soviet-Afghan wai
in in the late 197u's anu thioughout the 198u's.
1S2
Contiaiy to populai belief, the
funuing anu suppoit of fanatic militant gioups uiu not begin aftei the Soviet
invasion, but iathei, seveial yeais piioi to it. In the 198u's, the Nujaheuuin weie
publically poitiayeu as heioes anu fieeuom fighteis, with Bollywoou woiking to
glamouiize the aimeu iesistance in Afghanistan. While the CIA fueleu Afghanistan's
uecaue-long wai with the Soviet 0nion, many of those that fought in Afghanistan
(paiticulaily foieign fighteis aimeu, tiaineu, anu biought in by the CIA) woulu go on
to foim some of the woilu's most notoiious teiioiist gioups, many of which aie
listeu touay on the 0S anu 0K foieign teiioiist oiganization lists. 0S inteivention in
Afghanistan by tiaining anu aiming Afghanistan's Nujaheuuin, along with 0sama Bin
Lauen's Aiab fighteis, is one of the leauing factois that leu to the muiueious anu
piotiacteu uecaue-long wai, which woulu foimally establish al-Qaeua, an teiioiist
netwoik that woulu continue to fight aftei the Soviets weie expelleu fiom
Afghanistan, this time in Kosovo's biu foi inuepenuence fiom Seibia in the late
199u's.
The al-Qaeua-tiaineu Kosovo Libeiation Aimy (KLA) militants gaineieu an aimeu
Seibian iesponse, which was then useu by NAT0 as a pietext foi inteivention.
NAT0's entiy into the wai leu to the eventual caiving up of the nation, while
oiganizations such as the CIA weie familiaily founu to be piopping up iauical
insuigent fighteis. Al-Qaeua quickly became Ameiica's most notoiious enemy, filling
the voiu left by a collapseu Soviet 0nion anu justifying Washington's unwaiianteu
uefense spenuing anu expansion of enoimous tactical holuings oveiseas thioughout
the 199u's. Al-Qaeua continueu ieceiving coveit suppoit fiom 0S anu Biitish
intelligence agencies with financial assistance fiom Sauui Aiabia, as uiu many othei
extiemist gioups, which eventually began integiating with al-Qaeua acioss vaiious
iegions of the woilu. These CIA-fosteieu teiioiist gioups incluue the Libyan Islamic
Fighting uioup (LIFu), which was cieateu in Afghanistan with Libyan militants
pieviously aimeu anu tiaineu by the CIA to oveithiow Nuammai uauuafi in the eaily
198u's. Aftei seveial faileu attempts to seize Libya by foice, these fighteis filteieu
back into Afghanistan to fight the occupying 0S. This time, the Afghans weie no
longei "gallant," but iathei weie poitiayeu as meuieval, backwaius, anu in neeu of
1S2 'Blowback,' the Piequel, The Nation, 0ctobei 2S, 2uu1
Westein uemociacy anu 0N-sanctioneu nation builuing. The Libyans foi theii pait
woulu continue fighting the 0S in Afghanistan, anu when the 0S invaueu Iiaq in
2uuS, they woulu begin fighting 0S tioops theie as well.
While 0S foices occupieu Afghanistan foi moie than a uecaue, with fighting
ieaching unpieceuenteu levels, LIFu militants once again ieceiveu militaiy aiu anu
uiplomatic backing by NAT0, along with full uiplomatic iecognition by the 0S State
Bepaitment anu the 0K Foieign anu Commonwealth 0ffice as they iose up against
uauuafi in Libya, just as Afghanistan's Nujaheuuin iallieu against Soviet
expansionism on behalf of Westein foieign policy. This is a naiiative that fiist saw
these militants as heioes, then the woilu's most scoineu villains foi neaily a uecaue
of wai, befoie emeiging once again as heioes. Accoiuing to iepoits issueu by the
West Point Combating Teiioi Centei, Libya's eastein iegion is consiueieu to be one
of the woilu's highest concentiations of teiioiists, an aiea wheie Nuammai uauuafi
hau fought foi neaily thiee uecaues to eliminate the iegion's foieign-backeu
militants, centeieu in the cities of Beinah anu the epicentei of the NAT0-backeu
iebellion, Benghazi.
The Nuslim Biotheihoou anu vaiious Sunni Islamist political factions that have
usuipeu powei in the wake of the 0S-engineeieu "Aiab Spiing" aie the bypiouuct of
a policy uesigneu to unueimine the goveinments of Iian anu Syiia, anu Bezbollah
opeiating in Lebanon, by wiuening sectaiian conflict between Shi'a anu Sunni
Nuslims. The cieation of a uniteu Sunni-fiont was noteu by geopolitical analyst Bi.
Webstei Taipley who has stateu that the vaiious new auministiations iesulting fiom
these engineeieu ievolutions "coulu then be useu to suppoit the funuamental 0S-0K
stiategy foi the Niuule East, which is to assemble a block of Aiab anu Sunni
countiies (notably Egypt, Sauui Aiabia, the uulf states, anu }oiuan) which, foimeu
into a fiont with the paiticipation of Isiael, woulu colliue with the Iianian Shiite
fiont, incluuing Syiia, Bezbollah, Bamas, anu vaiious iauical foices."
Confiiming this analysis is a 2uu7 aiticle publisheu in the New Yorker by
jouinalist Seymoui Beish, "The Reuiiection: Is the Auministiation's new policy
benefiting oui enemies in the wai on teiioiism." Beish's piece uocuments
aumissions that the 0S, Sauuis, anu Isiaelis aie inueeu allieu (uespite attempts by
Sauui Aiabia anu influential Sunni oiganizations to poitiay themselves as "anti-
Zionist"), anu fuithei confiims that the 0S has mateiially suppoiteu a iegional
netwoik of extiemist fighteis anu teiioiists affiliateu with al-Qaeua.
1SS
Beish
uesciibes a policy shift that saw Washington collaboiating with Riyauh to conuuct
clanuestine opeiations intenueu to weaken Bezbollah in Lebanon, joining Sauui
Aiabia anu Isiael in a stiategic embiace, laigely because both countiies peiceive Iian
as an existential thieat. A piincipal component of this policy shift was the bolsteiing
of Sunni extiemist gioups espousing a militant veision of Islam against Bamascus, in
an attempt to unueimine Syiia, Iian's piimaiy conuuit anu platfoim of influence in
the Aiab woilu:
To unJermine lron, wbicb is preJominontly Sbiite, tbe Busb AJministrotion bos
JeciJeJ, in effect, to reconfiqure its priorities in tbe HiJJle Fost. ln lebonon, tbe
AJministrotion bos cooperoteJ witb SouJi Arobio´s qovernment, wbicb is Sunni, in
1SS The Reuiiection, The New Yoikei, Naich uS, 2uu7
clonJestine operotions tbot ore intenJeJ to weoken Eezbollob, tbe Sbiite orqonizotion
tbot is bockeJ by lron. Tbe 0.S. bos olso token port in clonJestine operotions oimeJ ot
lron onJ its olly Syrio. A by-proJuct of tbese octivities bos been tbe bolsterinq of Sunni
extremist qroups tbot espouse o militont vision of lslom onJ ore bostile to Americo onJ
sympotbetic to Al µoeJo.
1S4
Beish cites the key aichitects behinu the policy shift towaiu clanuestine
opeiations as being foimei 0S vice-Piesiuent Bick Cheney, foimei Beputy National
Secuiity Auvisoi Elliott Abiams, foimei 0S Ambassauoi to Iiaq Zalmay Khalilzau,
anu the infamous Piince Banuai bin Sultan, the foimei Sauui National-Secuiity
Auvisoi.
The impoitance of Piince Banuai (a close fiienu anu business paitnei of ueoige
B.W. Bush, who genially uesignateu him with the nickname, "Banuai Bush") in
Washington's effoit to unueimine Tehian anu its influence in the Niuule East cannot
be unueistateu. Banuai, who seiveu as the Ambassauoi to the 0niteu States foi
twenty-two yeais, was quoteu by Beish as saying, "We have two nightmaies, foi Iian
to acquiie the bomb anu foi the 0niteu States to attack Iian. I'u iathei the Isiaelis
bomb the Iianians, so we can blame them. If Ameiica uoes it, we will be blameu."
Buiing his tenuie as Ambassauoi to the 0niteu States, Banuai uevelopeu close
ielationships with senioi 0S officials, allieu with the goal of halting the expansion of
Shi'a political powei anu influence in the Niuule East. Beish highlights how Sauui
officials useu theii enoimous wealth as financial leveiage against the feaieu
emeigence of the ieligious minoiity Shi'a, who aie a majoiity in Iian, Iiaq, Bahiain,
anu Lebanon, anu aie wiuely vieweu as heietics by Sunnis. Foi the allieu poweis in
Tel Aviv, Riyauh, anu Washington, militant Sunni iauicals aie lessei enemies of the
West in contiast to the geopolitical emeigence of a "Shiite ciescent." This is an iionic
stance foi the 0niteu States to auopt while speaiheauing wai against Iiaq, wheie
most cases of insuigent violence 0S foices uealt with came fiom militant Sunni
foices. Foimei 0S Piesiuent ueoige Bush accuseu Iian anu Syiia of allowing
teiioiists to move in anu out of theii teiiitoiies to pioviue mateiial suppoit to
iesistance fighteis pitteu against the Ameiican occupation in Iiaq. The Bush
Auministiation's own failuies in planning anu executing theii piogiam in Iiaq weie
justifieu as the iesult of Iianian inteifeience. In an attempt to builu a case against
Iian inteifeiing in Iiaq, 0S militaiy peisonnel aiiesteu anu inteiiogateu hunuieu of
Iianians in Iiaq, many of whom weie pioviuing humanitaiian aiu anu meuical
assistance to wai-toin Iiaq:
Ilynt leverett, o former Busb AJministrotion Notionol Security Council officiol, tolJ
me tbot "tbere is notbinq coinciJentol or ironic" obout tbe new stroteqy witb reqorJ to
lroq. "Tbe AJministrotion is tryinq to moke o cose tbot lron is more Jonqerous onJ
more provocotive tbon tbe Sunni insurqents to Americon interests in lroq, wben÷if you
look ot tbe octuol cosuolty numbers÷tbe punisbment inflicteJ on Americo by tbe
Sunnis is qreoter by on orJer of moqnituJe," leverett soiJ. "Tbis is oll port of tbe
compoiqn of provocotive steps to increose tbe pressure on lron. Tbe iJeo is tbot ot
1S4 Ibiu
some point tbe lronions will responJ onJ tben tbe AJministrotion will bove on open
Joor to strike ot tbem."
1SS

Beish's aiticle also uesciibes in gieat uetail the iole of Saau Baiiii, the foimei
Lebanese Piime Ninistei who woikeu closely with Sauui Aiabia anu the 0niteu
States to cieate a safe haven foi teiioiist oiganizations on Lebanese soil, who have
been instiumental in uestabilizing neighboiing Syiia:
Tbe SouJi qovernment, witb Wosbinqton´s opprovol, woulJ proviJe funJs onJ
loqisticol oiJ to weoken tbe qovernment of PresiJent Bosbor AssoJ, of Syrio. Tbe
lsroelis believe tbot puttinq sucb pressure on tbe AssoJ qovernment will moke it more
conciliotory onJ open to neqotiotions. Syrio is o mojor conJuit of orms to Eezbollob.
Tbe SouJi qovernment is olso ot oJJs witb tbe Syrions over tbe ossossinotion of Rofik
Eoriri, tbe former lebonese Prime Hinister, in Beirut in 200S, for wbicb it believes tbe
AssoJ qovernment wos responsible. Eoriri, o billionoire Sunni, wos closely ossocioteJ
witb tbe SouJi reqime onJ witb Prince BonJor.
1S6
The Nuslim Biotheihoou is often poitiayeu as being anti-Isiaeli, anti-Ameiican,
anu anti-Westein in geneial. In ieality, Beish's 2uu7 iepoit makes cleai that the
Biotheihoou was the vehicle of choice foi the 0S, Isiaeli, anu Sauui elite aimeu at
halting Shi'a expansionism; an oiganization that has long ieceiveu backing anu uiiect
funuing not only in Syiia, but in Egypt as well. The Nuslim Biotheihoou's iank anu
file suiely believes in what they aie being tolu by theii leaueis, who have pioven
themselves to be piofessional uemagogues peuuling anti-Isiaeli anu anti-Ameiican
ihetoiic solely foi public consumption while being fully complicit in the West's
uesigns against the Aiab Woilu. Beish iepoits that a suppoitei of the Lebanese
Baiiii faction met Bick Cheney in Washington anu peisonally ielayeu the piioiity of
using the Nuslim Biotheihoou in Syiia in any move against the iuling goveinment:
[WoliJ] }umblott tben tolJ me tbot be boJ met witb vice-PresiJent Cbeney in
Wosbinqton lost foll to Jiscuss, omonq otber issues, tbe possibility of unJermininq
AssoJ. Ee onJ bis colleoques oJviseJ Cbeney tbot, if tbe 0niteJ Stotes Joes try to move
oqoinst Syrio, members of tbe Syrion Huslim BrotberbooJ woulJ be ´tbe ones to tolk to,´
}umblott soiJ.
Beish's exposé uetaileu how backing by the 0niteu States anu Sauui Aiabia hau
begun benefiting the Biotheihoou since at least 2uu7:
Tbere is eviJence tbot tbe AJministrotion´s reJirection stroteqy bos olreoJy
benefitteJ tbe BrotberbooJ. Tbe Syrion Notionol Solvotion Iront is o coolition of
opposition qroups wbose principol members ore o foction leJ by AbJul Eolim
KboJJom, o former Syrion vice-PresiJent wbo JefecteJ in 200S, onJ tbe BrotberbooJ.
A former biqb-ronkinq C.l.A. officer tolJ me, "Tbe Americons bove proviJeJ botb
politicol onJ finonciol support. Tbe SouJis ore tokinq tbe leoJ witb finonciol support,
but tbere is Americon involvement." Ee soiJ tbot KboJJom, wbo now lives in Poris, wos
qettinq money from SouJi Arobio, witb tbe knowleJqe of tbe Wbite Eouse. {ln 200S, o
Jeleqotion of tbe Iront´s members met witb officiols from tbe Notionol Security
1SS Ibiu
1S6 Ibiu
Council, occorJinq to press reports.) A former Wbite Eouse officiol tolJ me tbot tbe
SouJis boJ proviJeJ members of tbe Iront witb trovel Jocuments.
1S7
Inueeu, the ploy uesciibeu in incieuible uetail in 2uu7 has uemonstiably come to
fiuition, not to piotect against existential thieats to the people of Sauui Aiabia, Isiael,
oi the 0niteu States, but against existential thieats to theii leaueiship's ambitions of
iegional hegemony:
BonJor onJ otber SouJis bove ossureJ tbe Wbite Eouse tbot "tbey will keep o very
close eye on tbe reliqious funJomentolists." Tbeir messoqe to us wos "We´ve creoteJ tbis
movement, onJ we con control it. lt´s not tbot we Jon´t wont tbe Solofis to tbrow
bombs; it´s wbo tbey tbrow tbem ot÷Eezbollob, HoqtoJo ol-SoJr, lron, onJ ot tbe
Syrions, if tbey continue to work witb Eezbollob onJ lron."
1S8
Poetic )ustice in tbe Persian Culf
The enflaming of iegional sectaiian uivisions holus enoimous implications foi the
Niuule East, paiticulaily the piospect of "blowback" in the Kinguom. Sauui Aiabia
has a significant Shiite minoiity in its oil iich Eastein Piovince, anu the Bouse of
Sauu believes that Iianian opeiatives have been actively woiking with the local Shi'a
population to uestabilize the iegion. As the nations taigeteu foi iegime change anu
uestabilization eithei faltei oi aggiessively attempt to iestoie oiuei in theii own
nations, the possibility of an authentic inuigenous ievolution is teiiifying to those
Aiab nations who have uncompiomisingly woikeu to uestioy the Syiian state. The
ultia-conseivative iueological SouJi Wobbobism piacticeu in the Kinguom puiges
many common Nuslim piactices on the basis of being consiueieu as impuiities anu
innovations in Islam. While Riyauh has calleu foi uemociacy anu iespect foi human
iights in Syiia, the Bouse of Sauu piesiues ovei an absolutist state wheie political
paities aie piohibiteu anu capital punishment by public beheauing can be imposeu
as punishment foi foinication, witchciaft, anu apostasy fiom Islam.
0nuei a goveinance system ieminiscent of meuieval Euiope, the Wahhabi
iueology stiictly foibius uissent as the Bouse of Sauu exeits contiol ovei the Salafist
ieligious establishment to issue fatwas (a legal pionouncement in Islamic law) to
legitimize theii unchallengeu authoiity. Because it is a majoi expoitei of oil anu a
staunch ally of the 0niteu States, Washington has laigely tuineu a blinu eye to the
glaiing hypociisies of Sauui absolutism, giving the iegime fiee ieign to violate
piinciples that othei nations aie falsely accuseu of violating. In late Febiuaiy 2u11,
piotests eiupteu in the Shi'a majoiity Bahiain, calling foi gieatei political fieeuom
anu equality foi the majoiity Shia population, as well as the uownfall of the
monaichy of King Bamau bin Isa Al Khalifa.
1S9
0minously, Khalifa iequesteu a Sauui-
leu contingent of the uCC's Peninsula Shielu Foice (PSF) to extinguish opposition
piotests unuei the auspices of the uCC's Peninsula Shielu uefense pact befoie
ueclaiing maitial law anu a thiee-month state of emeigency. Bahiaini anu Sauui
1S7 Ibiu
1S8 Ibiu
1S9 Bahiain mouineis call foi enu to monaichy, The uuaiuian, Febiuaiy 18, 2u11
Aiabian foices unleasheu a vicious offensive against unaimeu civilian piotesteis in
Nanama's Peail Squaie anu have continueu to exeit excessive foice accoiuing to
iepoits issueu by the Bahiain Inuepenuent Commission of Inquiiy (BICI).
16u

As the situation escalateu in Bahiain, the goveinment blameu Iian foi instigating
uniest as the ieactionaiy iegime in Riyauh uelibeiately enflameu sectaiian ihetoiic
in feai of its own Shi'a minoiity ievolting, in oiuei to instigate intei-ieligious stiife
which woulu ieuuce the likelihoou of any upiising by the Sunni majoiity within
Sauui Aiabia.
161
Since Febiuaiy 2u11, piotesteis iegulaily helu uemonstiations in
Sauui Aiabia, mainly in Qatif anu Awamiyah in the eastein piovince, calling foi the
ielease of all political piisoneis anu fieeuom of expiession. 0n Naich Sth, 2u11, the
Sauui Inteiioi Ninistiy issueu a statement piohibiting "all foims of uemonstiations,
maiches oi piotests, anu calls foi them, because that contiauicts the piinciples of the
Islamic shaiia, the values anu tiauitions of Sauui society, anu iesults in uistuibing
public oiuei anu haiming public anu piivate inteiests."
162
The Febiuaiy 2u12 aiiest
anu uetention of piominent Shi'a Sheikh Nimi Baqi al-Nimi in Sauui Aiabi's eastein
piovince of al-Awamiyah fueleu populai sentiments against the iegime, piompting
open uissent anu iaie uisplays of wiuei piotest, spieauing to Sunni aieas in Bejaz,
anu even to Necca anu the political poweibase of Riyauh. Al-Nimi has allegeuly been
toituieu foi ciiticizing Sauui authoiities foi theii tieatment of the Shi'a minoiity anu
calling foi secession of the oil-iich eastein piovince piioi to pieuicting the
oveithiow of the goveinment if iepiession continueu.
In }uly 2u12, CIA Biiectoi Baviu Petiaeus flew to }euuah anu met with Sauui King
Abuullah bin Abuulaziz Al Sauu, shoitly aftei the monaich oiueieu the countiy's
secuiity foices to go on a state of high aleit uue to what he calleu a "tuibulent
situation" in the iegion.
16S
Although no iepoits suifaceu of what was uiscusseu
uuiing the meeting, one woulu assume the paii conveiseu ovei issues such as
Washington's concein ovei an inteinal powei stiuggle within the ioyal family, the
ailing health of King Abuullah, anu the incieasing violent ciackuown on Shi'a
activists anu anti-goveinment piotestois. Beep splits within in the ioyal family
became appaient as the seveial thousanu piinces anu piincesses began setting up
theii own coalitions to auuiess chionic pioblems such as unemployment, coiiuption
anu inauequate housing, uespite the enoimous financial iesouices fiom oil expoits.
The ueath of iegime haiulinei Piince Nayef bin Abuul Aziz in }une 2u1u exposeu
the fiagility of tiansition in the Sauui Kinguom; Nayef heaueu the uomestic secuiity
anu intelligence appaiatus anu was known foi ciacking uown on the secuiity thieat
poseu by Al Qaeua anu its affiliates opeiating insiue Sauui Aiabia, a pieeminent
thieat to the stability of the monaichy. Piioi to his ueath, he intiouuceu a welfaie
16u Bahiaini iegime foices attack S11 houses: al-Wefaq, PiessTv, }uly 21, 2u12
161 Bahiain piotesteis join anti-goveinment maich in Nanama, BBC, Naich 9, 2u12
162 CIA uiiectoi meets Sauui king in }euuah, PiessTv, }uly 1u, 2u12
16S Ibiu
package to alleviate issues of youth unemployment in the countiy, which was
peiceiveu as an inauequate solution to an incieasingly seveie pioblem in the
Kinguom. Nayef was seen as a figuie that helu ue facto contiol ovei the Sauui state
uue to the ailing health of 89-yeai olu King Abuullah, anu was an aggiessive
opponent of both Iian anu Bezbollah, whom he accuseu of intentionally unueimining
the Sunni population of Iiaq anu Lebanon. 0ne of Nayef's foieign policy objectives
aimeu to topple Shi'a Iiaqi leaueis Nuqtaua al- Saui, Ammai al-Bakim anu Piime
Ninistei Nuii al-Nalki foi theii close ties to Tehian.
Since the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iian, Aiab monaichies in the Peisian uulf
sought to inciease theii ties, peiceiving Iian to be a thieat to theii inteiests. Sauui
Aiabia believes that the uniest in Bahiain anu in its own Shi'a uominateu eastein
piovince has been bolsteieu by Iian's cleiical establishment, viewing the ieligious
minoiity as iepiesenting the inteiests of Tehian. Riyauh's intentions to establish a
stiongei economic union with Bahiain is likely motivateu by Iian's teiiitoiial claims
ovei the iegion anu theii opposition to the establishment of such a confeueiacy:
"ln o reference to lron´s bistoricol territoriol cloims over Bobroin, on lronion
porliomentorion losbeJ out oqoinst SouJi Arobio´s plons: ´lf it [Bobroin] is supposeJ to
be onnexeJ, it will qo to tbe lslomic Republic not [tbe] ol-SouJ [fomily]´. ln o more
officiol response, lronion Ioreiqn Hinistry spokesmon Romin Hebmonporost
suqqesteJ, ´Tbe crockJown on people, militory onJ security intervention by
neiqbborinq countries like SouJi Arobio, onJ plons like tbe proposol for tbe formotion
of o union between Bobroin onJ SouJi Arobio ore, in our view, ill-oJviseJ meosures,
wbicb will Jeepen tbe crisis´. 6iven tbe stokes involveJ, Bobroin will remoin o cruciol
stroteqic bottleqrounJ between SouJi Arobio onJ lron in tbe montbs obeoJ."
164
While conuemning anu maiginalizing its Shi'a population uomestically, the
Kinguom's aiiwaves have been uominateu by fieiy ihetoiic fiom the Salafist ieligious
establish calling foi jihau against the Assau iegime in Syiia, going as fai as
foimalizing a pay stiuctuie foi membeis of the Fiee Syiian Aimy anu othei
insuigents opeiating in Syiia with coopeiation fiom theii uulf allies. As uissiuent
gioups in neighboiing Qatai issue nationwiue calls uemanuing the oustei of Emii
Sheikh Bamau bin Khalifa Al Thani anu the uismantling of Qatai's uomestic 0S base,
the Kinguom is unuoubteuly petiifieu by the piospect of an inteinal ievolt at a time
when aiounu half the population is unuei 18-yeais olu anu the ageing uppei
echelons of the ioyal family aie incieasingly peiceiveu to be iepiessive anu
ieactionaiy.
16S
In a countiy wheie the "showcase of iefoim" is the foimation of an
allegiance council to select the heii to the thione twice within an eight-month peiiou,
the Kinguom may well finu itself paialyzeu by the giowing inteinal political
movement calling foi an enu to the Bouse of Sauu. The hypociisy of King Abuullah
calling on Bashai al-Assau to implement genuine iefoim anu "halt the killing
machine," uemonstiates the uishonesty of the Sauui line, as the Kinguom's suppoit
foi sectaiian insuigency in Syiia constitutes nothing shoit of state-uiiecteu jihau:
164 Sauui Aiabia-Bahiain union ieflects uulf iivaliy, Asia Times 0nline, }une 2u, 2u12
16S Bissiuents call foi public piotests against Boha iegime, 0.S. bases in Qatai, Tehian Times, }uly
24, 2u12
Tbe SouJis ore Jriven by tbeir feor tbot lron coulJ tilt tbe bolonce of power not only
in tbe reqion, but witbin tbeir own country. SouJi Arobio bos o siqnificont Sbiite
minority in its Fostern Province, o reqion of mojor oil fielJs; sectorion tensions ore biqb
in tbe province. Tbe royol fomily believes tbot lronion operotives, workinq witb locol
Sbiites, bove been bebinJ mony terrorist ottocks insiJe tbe kinqJom, occorJinq to voli
Nosr. "ToJoy, tbe only ormy copoble of contoininq lron"÷tbe lroqi Army÷"bos been
JestroyeJ by tbe 0niteJ Stotes. You´re now Jeolinq witb on lron tbot coulJ be nucleor-
copoble onJ bos o stonJinq ormy of four bunJreJ onJ fifty tbousonJ solJiers." {SouJi
Arobio bos seventy-five tbousonJ troops in its stonJinq ormy.) Nosr went on, "Tbe
SouJis bove consiJeroble finonciol meons, onJ bove Jeep relotions witb tbe Huslim
BrotberbooJ onJ tbe Solofis"÷Sunni extremists wbo view Sbiites os opostotes. "Tbe
lost time lron wos o tbreot, tbe SouJis were oble to mobilize tbe worst kinJs of lslomic
roJicols. 0nce you qet tbem out of tbe box, you con´t put tbem bock."
166
Sauui Aiabia's paiticipation in uestabilizing Syiia is seen as a means of ultimately
uiminishing the influence of Iian in the Aiab woilu, anu aiuing the establishment of
an absolutist, Sunni satellite-state in Bamascus. Bue to inteinational embaigoes on
Iian, the Kinguom's oil piouuction levels aie at a thiity-yeai high anu it can be safely
expecteu that Sauui Aiabia anu its uulf allies woulu militaiily back Isiael anu the
0niteu States if they choose to stiike Iian's nucleai facilities.
167
Riyauh woulu not
likely be satisfieu with iegime change in Iian; they seek theii own iegional
hegemony by weakening the Shi'a state entiiely. The Kinguom woulu suppoit
insuigent movements aimeu at captuiing Tehian's iesouices anu thieatening the
teiiitoiial integiity of the countiy along ethnic lines, encouiaging Iian's Kuius in the
noithwest, Balochs in the southeast anu Aiabs in the west to take up aims in suppoit
of theii own autonomy. As Riyauh uespeiately injects its tiemenuous financial
iesouices into welfaie piogiams anu subsiuies to appease the agitateu population,
the Kinguom is appioaching a ciossioaus that may challenge the absolutist iule of
the Bouse of Sauu. As the Kinguom anu its uulf allies move to enthusiastically
suppoit the upiising in Syiia, histoiian anu geopolitical analyst Bi. Webstei Taipley
foieshauows instability foi the monaichy, waining Riyauh's ieactionaiy iuling class
to examine the case of Louis Philippe }oseph u'0iléans, a membei of iuling Bouse of
Bouibon uynasty, who enthusiastically suppoiteu the Fiench Revolution, only to finu
himself eventually unuei the blaue of the guillotine.
Turkey and tbe Kurdisb Question
0nuei the uiiection of Piime Ninistei Recep Tayyip Eiuogan anu Foieign Ninistei
Ahmet Bavutoglu, Tuikish foieign policy has aggiessively shifteu away fiom the
touteu "Zeio Pioblems" policy, tiansfoiming into an intiusive speaiheau iipping into
the Syiian state. Tuikey's close geogiaphic pioximity to Syiia has given iise to aims
tiafficking, tuining the Tuikish-Syiian boiuei into a flashpoint foi insuigent fighteis
taking iefuge with the full complicity of Ankaia. The incieasing militaiization of
Tuikey's boiuei with Syiia seives as an uncomfoitable inuication of the conflict's
166 The Reuiiection, The New Yoikei, Naich uS, 2uu7
167 Sauui Aiabia says kinguom pumping 1u million bpu, the most in S months, Al-Aiabiya, Nay 8,
2u12
seveiity, wheie match anu tinuei can meet at any moment with uebilitating
consequences foi the iegion. In Nay 2u12, the Council on Foieign Relations
sponsoieu an Inuepenuent Task Foice leu by foimei 0S Secietaiy of State Naueleine
Albiight, foimei National Secuiity Auvisei Stephen }. Bauley, anu twenty-five otheis,
who issueu a iepoit entitleu, "0.S.-Tuikey Relations: A New Paitneiship."
168
The
uocument is wiitten in the context of how Tuikey can benefit the 0niteu States with
iespect to Syiia anu Iian, not without empty piomises to entice Tuikish leaueis into
falling on theii swoius foi Westein ambitions acioss the Niuule East. The CFR's
attempt to flesh out an impioveu alliance between the 0S anu Tuikey, claiming the
new ielationship woulu tiump the potential foi 0S coopeiation with any BRICS
nation (except peihaps Inuia), seives as a pationizing political stunt attempting to
fill Tuikish leaueis with uelusions of gianueui, tempting them to leau the chaige
against Syiia anu Iian in exchange foi Westein suppoit behinu Ankaia's ambitions of
iegional hegemony. In late }uly 2u12, Reuters confiimeu the existence of iebel base in
Auana, a southein Tuikish city ioughly 1uu km fiom the Syiian boiuei, iequesteu by
Sauui Beputy Foieign Ninistei Piince Abuulaziz bin Abuullah al-Sauu uuiing an
official visit. Auana is also home to a 0S-NAT0 base at Inciilik, confiiming suspicions
of uiiect coveit Ameiican involvement. Reuters's souice in Qatai was quoteu as
saying:
"Tbree qovernments ore supplyinq weopons: Turkey, µotor onJ SouJi Arobio," soiJ
o Bobo-boseJ source. Ankoro bos officiolly JenieJ supplyinq weopons. "All weoponry is
Russion. Tbe obvious reoson is tbot tbese quys {tbe Syrion rebels) ore troineJ to use
Russion weopons, olso becouse tbe Americons Jon´t wont tbeir bonJs on it. All weopons
ore from tbe block morket. Tbe otber woy tbey qet weopons is to steol tbem from tbe
Syrion ormy. Tbey roiJ weopons stores." Tbe source oJJeJ: "Tbe Turks bove been
Jesperote to improve tbeir weok surveillonce, onJ bove been beqqinq Wosbinqton for
Jrones onJ surveillonce." Tbe pleos oppeor to bove foileJ. "So tbey bove bireJ some
privote quys to come Jo tbe job."
The uepieciation of Tuikey's status to an acquiescent aim of the 0S Intelligence
establishment may likely come at gieat cost to Piime Ninistei Eiuogan, as the
collapse of the Syiian state coulu yielu a closei collaboiation between Syiian Kuiuish
iebels opeiating in noithein Syiia anu Tuikey's own Kuiuish militant iesistance,
pushing the insuigency fuithei into eastein Tuikey anu, consequently, uestabilizing
the countiy. The Kuiuish minoiity in Tuikey makes up moie than a quaitei of the
total population anu has fought a militant sepaiatist campaign in the Kuiuish iegion
foi uecaues leu by the Kuiuistan Woikeis' Paity (PKK), who woulu pose an
immeuiate thieat to the uomestic secuiity of Tuikey if bolsteieu by an influx of
Syiian Kuiuish iebels.
Kuiuistan is a ioughly uefineu geo-cultuial iegion encompassing aieas of eastein
Tuikey, noitheastein Syiia, noithein Iiaq anu noithwestein Iian, wheie nationalist
oiganizations have histoiically fought foi the establishment of an inuepenuent state
anu gieatei autonomy within existing national boiueis. Iiaqi Kuiuish leauei
Nassouu Baizani of the autonomous Kuiuistan Regional uoveinment (KRu) in
noithein Iiaq has pioveu to be an amenable canuiuate foi the 0niteu States to use in
168 0.S.-Tuikey Relations, Council on Foieign Relations, Nay 2u12
manipulating Tuikish policy. Baizani maintains contiol ovei Iiaqi Kuiuistan's iich oil
fielus, wheie the likes of ExxonNobil anu Chevion have acquiieu a combineu aiea of
1,124 squaie kilometeis, much to the uismay of Iiaq's Cential goveinment in
Baghuau, which views the ueal with Baizani's piovincial authoiity as bypassing
Iiaq's soveieignty.
The oil is intenueu to be expoiteu onto inteinational maikets, anu while Iiaq anu
Tuikey's Kiikuk-Ceyhan pipeline coulu be useu as an exit point, a moie attiactive
tianspoitation ioute foi the consiueiable oil anu gas ueposits in Kuiuistan
(containing between S anu 6 tiillion cubic meteis of natuial gas anu 4S billion
baiiels of oil) woulu be the Syiian poit city of Latakia, situateu on the eastein
Neuiteiianean. As Ankaia is ueteimineu to expanu its eneigy consumption to fuel its
uomestic economy, Tuikey's Eneigy Ninistei Tanei Yiluiz has enthusiastically
embiaceu economic coopeiation with the Kuiuistan Regional uoveinment, uespite
Baghuau's affiimations of the piovincial goveinment illegally appioving eneigy ueals
to expoit Kuiuistani natuial gas to Siyah Kalem, a Tuikish engineeiing anu
constiuction company. Foi Ankaia, Nassouu Baizani is a stiategic ally, as Tuikish
foieign policy towaiu Syiia anu Iiaq conveige. Iiaq is Tuikey's seconu laigest tiauing
paitnei, with moie than half of Ankaia's $12 billion tiaue being conuucteu with
Baizani's KRu. Baizani is vieweu not only as a business paitnei, but also as a vital
figuie who can leveiage Tuikey's pioblems with Kuiuish militancy within its own
boiueis by speaiheauing a new political tiack foi the iegion's vaiious Kuiuish
factions.
In Apiil 2u12, Baizani maue an official visit to Washington to establish a 0S-
Kuiuistan Business Council to piomote Ameiican investment in the iegion, meeting
with Piesiuent Baiack 0bama, Befense Secietaiy Leon Panetta, Beputy Secietaiy of
State William Buins, Secietaiy of State Billaiy Clinton anu vice Piesiuent }oe Biuen.
Iiaq's Shi'a Piime Ninistei Nouii al-Naliki has fallen out of favoi with Washington
anu Tuikey foi ueepening ties to Iian anu foi uiplomatically siuing with Bashai al-
Assau's goveinment. The 0niteu States oiiginally backeu Naliki assuming that a
Shiite goveinment in Iiaq coulu woik in Washington's favoi to unueimine the Sunni
extiemist ciicles that vigoiously fought against Ameiican occupation, although this
leu to the bolsteiing of Shi'a iauical militias unuei Naliki's watch. 0nsuipiisingly,
Baizani espouseu haish ihetoiic towaiu Iiaq's cential goveinment upon ietuining
fiom Washington:
Ee tolJ ol-Eoyot, "lroq is movinq toworJ o cotostropbe, o return to Jictotorsbip",
onJ tbot on bis return to Arbil be woulJ coll o meetinq of lroqi leoJers to "sove" tbe
country from Holiki onJ to seek "roJicol solutions."
169
0nuoubteuly, Baizani is iefeiiing to the piospect of Kuiuish secession fiom Iiaq,
an attiactive stiategy foi the 0niteu States anu a move that Tuikey woulu itself
suppoit unuei ciicumstances that benefit its own inteiests. Baizani has attempteu to
ieconcile uiffeiences between vaiious Kuiuish gioups by biibing factional leaueis
with Tuikish money, even enueavoiing to peisuaue Syiian Kuius to align with the
anti-Assau opposition. Tuikish PN Eiuogan met uiiectly with Baizani in Istanbul,
leauing the chaige against Naliki's auministiation in Baghuau in tanuem with the
169 0S, Tuikey anu Iiaqi Kuius join hanus, Asia Times 0nline, Apiil 24, 2u12
Peisian uulf nations that have woikeu to systematically uemolish the Syiian state,
stating:
"Tbe bosis of tbe politicol crisis in wbicb lroq finJs itself is tbot lroqi politicions seek
to consoliJote power onJ excluJe otbers, rotber tbon [follow] politics boseJ on
Jemocrotic onJ universol principles. lt is o foct tbot bebinJ tbe misperceptions tbot leJ
to tbe occusotions oqoinst Turkey by Prime Hinister Holiki, wbo instiqoteJ tbe crisis in
lroq, tbis wronq unJerstonJinq of politics con be founJ."
17u
0nce again in step with the absolutist uulf states, the unueilying motive of a
uemonization of Iiaq's goveinment is the isolation of Iian by stiangling its allies anu
piomoting a ielationship between Iiaq's Kuiuish anu Sunni leaueiship, theieby
unueimining Naliki's auministiation in Baghuau. An inteiview with Bezbollah's
leauei Bassan Nasiallah conuucteu in 2uu7 alluueu to the piospect of a geopolitical
iestiuctuiing of the iegion along ethnic anu sectaiian lines:
Nosrollob soiJ be believeJ tbot PresiJent Busb´s qool wos "tbe Jrowinq of o new
mop for tbe reqion. Tbey wont tbe portition of lroq. lroq is not on tbe eJqe of o civil
wor÷tbere is o civil wor. Tbere is etbnic onJ sectorion cleonsinq. Tbe Joily killinq onJ
Jisplocement wbicb is tokinq ploce in lroq oims ot ocbievinq tbree lroqi ports, wbicb
will be sectorion onJ etbnicolly pure os o preluJe to tbe portition of lroq. Witbin one or
two yeors ot tbe most, tbere will be totol Sunni oreos, totol Sbiite oreos, onJ totol
KurJisb oreos. Fven in BoqbJoJ, tbere is o feor tbot it miqbt be JiviJeJ into two oreos,
one Sunni onJ one Sbiite."
171

Ankaia's ieliance on emboluening Baizani's ambitions to leau an inuepenuent
Kuiuish entity, with Aibil as its capital in noithein Iiaq, comes with the hope that the
KRu can play a cential iole in smotheiing Kuiuish insuigents in eastein Tuikey leu
by the militant Kuiuistan Woikeis' Paity (PKK), which uses noithein Iiaq as a
piimaiy base of opeiations. 0n a state visit to Ankaia, Baizani auuiesseu the issue of
Kuiuish militancy:
You won´t qet onywbere witb weopons. Tbe PKK sboulJ loy Jown its orms. l will not
let tbe PKK prevoil in nortbern lroq ... lf tbe PKK qoes obeoJ witb weopons, it will beor
tbe consequences.
172
Baizani has toeu the Tuikish line uespite the fact that the PKK enjoys wiuespieau
sympathy among Kuius in noithein Iiaq, piimaiily because he believes having
poweiful fiienus with ueep pockets in Ankaia, Boha anu Riyauh will empowei him
financially anu politically. The ieactionaiy Aiab monaichies peiceive Naliki's Iiaq to
be a meuulesome outpost of Iianian influence. They seek to auu a Kuiuish
uimension to foieign policy uiiecteu at Syiia, aiming to pievent the PKK fiom
iekinuling olu alliances with Bashai al-Assau's goveinment in Bamascus. Baizani's
success in peisuauing Syiia's Kuius (who constitute about 1u% of the countiy's
17u Ibiu
171 The Reuiiection, The New Yoikei, Naich uS, 2uu7
172 0S, Tuikey anu Iiaqi Kuius join hanus, Asia Times 0nline, Apiil 24, 2u12
population) to join the iebellion against Assau uepenus on suppoiting theii
sepaiatist uemanus to oveisee an autonomous Kuiuish iegion in eastein Syiia.
Ankaia's policy on Syiia walks a uelicate line anu is funuamentally hypociitical in its
suppoit foi Kuiuish autonomy abioau while iuthlessly quelling movements holuing
similai aspiiations uomestically. uiven the extent to which Ankaia has maue itself
into a suppiessoi of uomestic Kuiuish nationalism, its suppoit foi Iiaq's Kuiuish
population anu othei inteinational factions may likely tiiggei high public
iesentment, leauing to insuigent activity in Syiia which woulu bleeu into the Tuikish
state.
0ne case of misjuugeu economic uevelopment comes with an unueilying political
component that holus alaiming consequences foi local iesiuents anu aieas of
histoiical aichaeological impoitance in Basankeyf, a small village in southeastein
Tuikey. This is one of the oluest continuously inhabiteu human settlements with
iecoius uating back appioximately 9,Suu yeais. Ankaia's State Byuiaulic Woiks has
piesseu foiwaiu with the constiuction of the hyuioelectiic Ilisu Bam, which woulu
cause immense ecological haim to the Tigiis Rivei valley by iaising watei levels anu
floouing neaiby canyons that aie cuiiently uiy. Although Tuikey is among the
woilu's highest potential geotheimal eneigy pioviueis, the constiuction of the Ilisu
Bam in Basankeyf woulu submeige the entiie village with its population of thiee
thousanu iesiuents anu iiieplaceable cultuial heiitage, uespite the completeu uam
piouucing less than 2% of Tuikey's total eneigy neeus.
17S
Ankaia has openly
ueclaieu that one of the main functions of the pioject is to uiown out stiongholus of
the Kuiuistan Woikeis' Paity, whose militants opeiate fiom the mountainous Iiaqi-
Tuikish boiuei.
174
Both the goveinments in Syiia anu Iiaq have conuemneu the
pioject anu iaiseu giave conceins that Tuikey's uam constiuction upstieam will
affect aiounu SS,uuu people living along the Tigiis Rivei in othei nations. The
uestiuction of a site containing aitifacts fiom numeious ancient civilizations anu the
tomb of Iman Abuullah, thought to be a close ielative of the Piophet Nohammau, will
unuoubteuly woik to fan the flames of a Kuiuish backlash into Tuikey.
17S

As a iesult of Tuikey's aggiessive stance on Syiia, Ankaia may jeopaiuize its
substantial tiaue ielations anu eneigy uevelopment piojects with both Russia anu
China. The constiuction of Tuikey's Neisin Akkuyu nucleai plant seives as Russia's
laigest foieign investment, estimateu at $2u billion, anu woulu help uevelop Ankaia's
eneigy sectoi as it moves towaiu auvanceu economic uevelopment.
176
uiven the
mutual benefits to both Ankaia anu Noscow fiom economic coopeiation, the
possibility of significantly ieuucing those ties is unlikely, unless Tuikey militaiily
inteivenes in Syiia uiiectly outsiue the manuate of the 0niteu Nations. Both paities
17S Tuikey's ueotheimal Eneigy Potential, Stanfoiu 0niveisity, Febiuaiy 2u1u
174 Tuikey's Basankeyf uam can uiown Kuius' hiueaways, Asia Times 0nline, }une 12, 2u12
17S Tuikish histoiy to sink to oblivion, Asia Times 0nline, Septembei u8, 2u1u
176 Tuikey anu Russia uevelop stiategic alliance, Touay's Taman, }anuiaiy 29, 2u12
have agieeu to the South Stieam pipeline pioject, to tianspoit Russian natuial gas to
Euiope by passing thiough Tuikish teiiitoiial wateis, with the tiaue volume
between the two countiies ieaching $1uu billion within five yeais. Consiueiing
Russia's significant investments into Tuikish inuustiy, communication seivices,
banking institutions, anu the establishment of a Bigh Level Coopeiation Council
intiouuceu by foimei Russian Piesiuent Neuveuev, Noscow may be willing to tuin a
blinu eye to Tuikish aggiession to pieseive its own inteiests by biinging the
uiplomatic anu political stance of the two countiies closei, not without vocal
ciiticisms fiom the Russian Foieign Ninistiy. In late }uly, statements by Russian
Foieign Ninistei Seigei Laviov weie ciitical of Tuikey, which alloweu boiuei
checkpoints with Syiia to be captuieu by militants:
"AccorJinq to some informotion, tbese cbeckpoints were seizeJ not by tbe Iree
Syrion Army ot oll - wbotever one tbinks obout it - but by qroups Jirectly linkeJ witb ol
µoeJo," lovrov soiJ ot o news conference witb bis Cypriot counterport. "We ore Jouble-
cbeckinq tbis," soiJ lovrov, suqqestinq tbot Western notions sboulJ not rusb to
celebrote territoriol qoins by opponents of PresiJent Bosbor ol-AssoJ´s qovernment. "lf
sucb processes - tbe seizure of territory by terrorists - ore supporteJ by our portners,
tben we woulJ like to receive on onswer to tbe question of wbot tbeir position on Syrio
is, wbot tbey ore tryinq to ocbieve in tbot country," be soiJ.
177
Bespite cynicism fiom Noscow, chances aie highei of Tuikey being uenieu entiy
into the Shanghai Coopeiation 0iganization (SC0) foi its belligeience in Syiia than
the piospect of any substantial fieezing in tiaue ielations with Russia. Tuikey was
gianteu uialogue paitnei status at the SC0's 2u12 Beijing Summit, anu has shifteu
away fiom attempting to join the fleuging Euiopean 0nion with a ieneweu focus on
integiation with the SC0.
178
Tuikey's stiategic geogiaphic pioximity makes it a
valuable tiauing paitnei anu ally to Beijing, with theii ambitions to uevelop the
eneigy potential of Cential Asia by means of a "New Silk Roau", biiuging seveial
countiies to connect China anu Tuikey. While cases of Tuikish aimeu foices
attempting to inteifeie with Russian vessels ueliveiing caigo to Syiia woulu
unquestionably stiain ielations between the two countiies, Ankaia is actively
enuangeiing its expoit tiaue to Russia, estimateu at moie than $1 billion.
Thioughout the Syiian ciisis, Tuikey's iiiesponsible conuuct as the ostensible
uaggei of NAT0 has taken Ankaia uown an unpiouuctive path of aggiession,
enflaming tension with its allies anu iegional neighbois, anu uisenfianchising its
own electeu officials. Among otheis, Refik Ei-Yilmaz, legislatoi of the Republican
People's Paity anu membei of the Tuikish pailiament, has lasheu out against the
nation's boiuei becoming a hub foi "swaims of CIA anu Nossau spies infiltiating into
Syiia fieely," ciiticizing Tuikish foieign policy, calling it iiiational anu unsuccessful:
Ee noteJ tbot locol people in tbe province ore qettinq oqitoteJ over tbe presence of
tbe stronqers. Turkisb police remoin mute spectotors os tbe spies corry vorious types of
iJentificotion, Fr-Yimoz went on to soy. Ee olso occuseJ tbe outborities of ollowinq
Americon onJ lsroeli troopers on Turkisb soil witbout ony opprovol from tbe
177 Fighteis on Syiian-Tuikish boiuei may be Qaeua allies: Russia, Reuteis, }uly 2S, 2u12
178 Tuikey opts foi SC0, The voice of Russia, }uly 27, 2u12
porlioment. Fr-Yilmoz´s comments come ofter tbe Jeputy of tbe Republicon People´s
Porty, 0smon Ioruk loqoqlu, on HonJoy blomeJ Turkey´s rulinq }ustice onJ
Bevelopment Porty for fomentinq tbe unrest in Syrio. loqoqlu criticizeJ tbe Turkisb
qovernment for oqqrovotinq tbe situotion by senJinq militory forces onJ vebicles
toworJs tbe Syrion borJer.
179
Ankaia's ieauiness to host militants on theii teiiitoiy anu hesitation to negotiate
with Bamascus is fiaught with high iisks. At a time when Tuikey's ethnically uiveise
society is incieasingly uiviueu ovei Islamist anu seculai lines, Eiuogan is unable to
peisuaue the majoiity opinion to suppoit a wai in Syiia, something which woulu
cost the Tuikish state immensely. While being in close contact with Washington anu
Tel Aviv to uiscuss "a bioau iange of contingency plans" ovei "how to manage a
Syiian goveinment collapse," Ankaia has hosteu anu financially suppoiteu the Syiian
National Council, the Fiee Syiian Aimy, the Syiian Nuslim Biotheihoou, anu has
shown itself to be fully committeu to toppling the Syiian goveinment. Since seveiely
stiaining ielations aftei a Nay 2u1u inciuent involving the slaying of nine Tuiks by
Isiaeli commanuos who tiieu to stop a Tuikish ship fiom bieaking the uaza
blockaue, Tel Aviv anu Ankaia have conveigeu once moie to coopeiate against the
Assau goveinment:
A normolizeJ Turkisb-lsroeli relotionsbip woulJ olso open opportunities for
cooperotion oqoinst tbe AssoJ qovernment, witb tbe Turks tokinq tbe politicol onJ
reqionol leoJ onJ tbe lsroelis proviJinq intelliqence onJ oJJitionol procticol ossets.
Any lsroeli contribution woulJ, of course, bove to be invisible in orJer not to creote o
sense tbot lsroel wos bebinJ tbe Syrion uprisinq. Tbis mokes Turkisb-lsroeli
cooperotion oqoinst Hr. AssoJ even more voluoble, for it woulJ ollow lsroel to proviJe
untroceoble ossets to support Turkey´s efforts to unJermine tbe AssoJ qovernment.
18u
Isiael's Nossau has quietly uiiecteu suppoit to Salafist fighteis anu aimeu iebel
gioups fiom the onset of the upiising in southein Syiia in Naich 2u11. Auuitionally,
they have also pioviueu suppoit to Kuiuish sepaiatists in noithein Syiia allieu with
Nassouu Baizani's Kuiuish Regional uoveinment in Iiaq.
181
Kuiuish sepaiatism is
the vehicle of choice foi foieign poweis to weaken Syiia's teiiitoiial integiity by
balkanization along ethnic anu ieligious lines in oiuei to foim acquiescent political
entities. Foi Tel Aviv, this stiategy is funuamental to Isiaeli expansionism anu seives
to isolate theii laigei auveisaiy in Tehian.
Israel and tbe Patb to Persia
Since the 1967 Six Bay Wai, Isiael has illegally occupieu an aiea of southwestein
Syiia, known as the uolan Beights, a iegion that Tel Aviv ielies on foi one-thiiu of its
fiesh watei supplies.
182
Bistoiically, Isiael has shown inteiest in exploiing the uolan
179 Tuikey's Batay Piovince, Nossau, CIA spy hub: Tuikish NP, PiessTv, }uly S1, 2u12
18u Bow Ameiica Can Belp Its Fiienus Nake Nice, The New Yoik Times, }une 2u, 2u12
181 veteian Kuiuish politician calls on Isiael to suppoit the bieak-up of Syiia, Kuiu Net, Nay 16,
2u12
182 Shouting in the hills, Al-Ahiam, }une 2uu8
Beights' petioleum anu natuial gas ieseives - initiatives that weie suspenueu unuei
pievious auministiations' peace negotiations with Syiia. In an attempt to ueciease
Tel Aviv's ieliance on oil expoits, Isiaeli Piime Ninistei Benjamin Netanyahu's
goveinment has taken auvantage of civil uniest in Syiia to appiove exploiatoiy
uiilling in the uolan Beights, a move likely to tiiggei inteinational upioai anu
potential conflict between Isiael's Aiab neighbois if eneigy iesouices aie inueeu
founu.
18S
While fanning the flames of insuigency insiue Syiia, Netanyahu anu Isiaeli
Befense Ninistei Ehuu Baiak asseit that Tel Aviv woulu be piepaieu to attack Syiia
with the aim of taigeting its weapons aisenals shoulu the situation ueteiioiate.
184

While Netanyahu publically announceu suppoit foi a Palestinian state on the West
Bank, a panel of Isiaeli juiists assembleu by Netanyahu's goveinment to ueteimine
the legal status of the West Bank concluueu that theie is "no occupation" of
Palestinian lanus anu that the continueu constiuction of settlement outposts aie
entiiely legal unuei Isiaeli law, iegaiuless of inteinational opinion. Netanyahu's
auministiation has appioveu constiuction of 8Su settlei homes in the occupieu West
Bank in }une 2u12, even aftei the Isiaeli pailiament iejecteu a bill to ietioactively
legalize some of the existing homes in the aiea.
18S
While Isiael's Foieign Ninistei
Aviguoi Liebeiman asseits Tel Aviv's unwillingness to peimit Palestinians any iight
to ietuin to theii lanus, emphasizing, "not even one iefugee," apaitheiu enfoiceu on
ethnic anu ieligious lines has become a iatifieu pait of Isiaeli goveinment policy.
186
In 19S2, Isiaeli Befense Ninistei Noshe Bayan spoke aiuently of Tel Aviv's
ultimate goal, the cieation of "an Isiaeli empiie." Netanyahu's conseivative Likuu
paity was founueu on the iueological founuations of Revisionist Zionism, piomoting
}ewish settlement in }uuea anu Samaiia (the West Bank) anu the full biblical lanu of
Isiael by contempoiaiy }ews, an oil-iich lanumass extenuing fiom the banks of the
Nile Rivei in Egypt to the shoies of the Euphiates. The Novement foi uieatei Isiael
was founueu following the captuie of the West Bank anu uaza Stiip fiom }oiuan anu
Egypt uuiing 1967's Six Bay Wai, leauing to the wiuei constiuction of Isiaeli
settlements. Isiael's Likuu paity was establisheu on the philosophy of Ze'ev
}abotinksy, who calleu foi the establishment of a "uieatei Isiael," a concept embiaceu
by Isiaeli histoiian Benzion Netanyahu, fathei of the Isiael's Piime Ninistei who was
quoteu in an inteiview befoie his ueath in 2u12 as saying:
"Tbe Bible finJs no worse imoqe tbon tbis of tbe mon from tbe Jesert. AnJ wby?
Becouse be bos no respect for ony low. Becouse in tbe Jesert be con Jo os be pleoses,"
18S uoveinment secietly appioves uolan Beights uiilling, The Times of Isiael, Nay 1S, 2u12
184 Netanyahu 'ueteimineu to attack Iian' befoie 0S elections, claims Isiael's Channel 1u, The Times of Isiael,
August 2u, 2u12
18S Isiael to builu moie West Bank homes, Al-}azeeia, }une u7, 2u12
186 Liebeiman: Netanyahu's stance on 1967 boiueis ieflects viewpoint of most Isiaelis, The Times of Isiael,
Nay 2S, 2u11
Benzion Netonyobu soiJ. "Tbe tenJency toworJs conflict is in tbe essence of tbe Arob.
Ee is on enemy by essence. Eis personolity won´t ollow bim ony compiomise or
oqreement. lt Joesn´t motter wbot kinJ of resistonce be will meet, wbot price be will
poy. Eis existence is one of perpetuol wor." lsroel´s must be tbe some, be inJicoteJ. "Tbe
two stotes solution Joesn´t exist," Benzion Netonyobu soiJ. "Tbere ore no two people
bere. Tbere is o }ewisb people onJ on Arob populotion. tbere is no Polestinion people,
so you Jon´t creote o stote for on imoqinory notion. tbey only coll tbemselves o people
in orJer to fiqbt tbe }ews."
187

While openly auvocating piogiams of such substantial teiiitoiial expansion have
fallen out of mainstieam Isiaeli policy goals, auheients to hypei-conseivative
Zionism view Isiaeli expansionism as the unwaveiing obligation of the }ewish
people. 0nuoubteuly, the countiy that most challenges these ambitions is the Islamic
Republic of Iian. Although nucleai-aimeu Isiael piesiues ovei peihaps the most
capable aimy in the Niuule East anu is nowheie neai as vulneiable as Euiope's
}ewish population piioi to Woilu Wai II (Netanyahu often contiasts the Bolocaust
with the impenuing thieat poseu by Iian), Netanyahu's auministiation has asseiteu
its iight to stiike Iian without consent fiom any othei nation in oiuei to pievent
Tehian fiom ueveloping the capability to piouuce nucleai weapons.
188
Senioi officials within Isiael have been vocal in theii ciiticisms of the Netanyahu
goveinment's uefense policies, such as IBF Chief of Staff Lt. uen. Benny uantz, who
auviseu against attacking Syiian chemical weapon convoys, auvising fuithei caution
anu iestiaint.
189
Foimei Nossau chief Neii Bagan has been a vocal ciitic against the
Netanyahu goveinment's plans to attack Iian, calling it, "the stupiuest thing I have
evei heaiu," waining of wiuei iegional wai.
19u
Netanyahu has insinuateu that non-
teiiestiial matteis guiue Tehian's foieign policy, being ciitical of Shi'a ieligious
beliefs piacticeu in Iian, which piophesize the ietuin of a uiiect uescenuent of the
founuei of Islam, Al-Imam al-Nahui, uuiing times of tuimoil anu uecauence to biing
oiuei thiough the authentic inteipietation of Islam, uespite himself being wiuely
ciiticizeu foi espousing a megalomaniacal hubiis, anu emphasizing a messianic-
catastiophic woiluview, wheie Isiael is "the eteinal nation."
191

187 Receiveu Wisuom. Bow the Iueology of Netanyahu's Late Fathei Influenceu the Son, TINE,
Nay u2, 2u12
188 Bau news unwelcome: Isiael iefuses to listen to 0S envoy's iepoit on Iian, Russia Touay, Nay
26, 2u12
189 Attack on Syiian chemical stockpiles coulu leau to 'bioauei campaign,' says IBF Chief of Staff, Baaietz, }uly
24, 2u12
19u Ex-Nossau boss Neii Bagan says an Isiaeli attack on Iian woulu be 'stupiuist thing evei,' The New Yoik Times, Naich 11,
2u12
191 As Netanyahu pushes Isiael closei to wai with Iian, Isiaelis cannot keep silent, Baaietz, August
uS, 2u12
In an inteiview with 60 Hinutes, Neii Bagan emphasizeu the iationality of the
Iianian iegime, while foimei Shin Bet secuiity seivice chief Yuval Biskin has publicly
iejecteu calls to militaiily stiike Iian, accusing Tel Aviv of exaceibating the
situation.
192
While these senioi Isiaeli officials feai the possible iamifications of a
uiiect stiike on Iian, most auvocate iegime change in Tehian. Foimei Nossau chief
Ephiaim Balevy aigues that talk of Iian posing an "existential thieat" to Isiael is
meiely Tel Aviv attempting to gainei suppoit of the inteinational community by
making insinuations to the histoiical plight of }ews.
19S
Balevy has emphasizeu that
Iian anu Isiael shoulu foimally make agieements that Tehian will not to weaponize
its nucleai eneigy piogiam, allowing Iian to be "ieintiouuceu into the family of
nations fiom which they have been viitually expelleu in iecent months."
Inteinational sanctions anu oil embaigoes on Iian have causeu inflation to soai, with
the cost of foou in Iian incieasing between 2S anu 12S peicent, with 6u peicent of
the population ielying on cash subsiuies hanueu out by Tehian.
194
As the Iianian iial
continues to plunge while commouity piices continue to skyiocket, foimei Isiaeli
foieign ministei Shlomo Ben-Ami foiewains, "When a national cuiiency loses Su%
of its value in a mattei of weeks, economic collapse is at hanu."
19S
Eooretz iepoits
the iemaiks of an unnameu senioi official in the Isiaeli Foieign Ninistiy:
Tbese oren´t sonctions oqoinst lron. lnsteoJ, tbey ore sonctions imposeJ by tbe West
to curb lsroel´s ottock plons. EoJ lsroel not spoken out obout its intention to ottock,
none of tbis woulJ be boppeninq. Tbe lronions ore friqbteneJ. You bove to unJerstonJ
wbot´s qoinq on tbere in stores; citizens qrob fooJ off tbe sbelves becouse tbey ore
worrieJ obout on impenJinq ottock. lnflotion is soorinq onJ tbe currency bos lost bolf
its volue. All tbis ottests to feor.
196
While Iianian Foieign Ninistei Ali Akbai Salehi publically ienounces the
uevelopment of nucleai weapons, Iianian scientists claim to be eniiching uianium to
2u% to uevelop iauiophaimaceuticals anu inuustiial isotopes unuei the supeivision
of inspectois of the Inteinational Atomic Eneigy Agency (IAEA).
197
Iian has maue
effoits to ensuie the tianspaiency of its nucleai piogiam by allowing IAEA piobes to
inspect Iianian sites such as the Foiuo eniichment plant anu Paichin militaiy
complex, wheie the agency has iepoiteu suspicious activities in the past. Foimei
chief of the Inteinational Atomic Eneigy Agency (IAEA) Bans Blix has challengeu the
192 Yuval Biskin, Isiael Foimei Intel Chief, Slams Netanyahu's Iian Stance, The Buffington Post, Apiil 28, 2u12
19S Iian poses no 'existential thieat' to Isiael - ex-Nossau chief, Russia Touay, Febiuaiy u6, 2u12
194 No 0ne Can Affoiu Anothei Rounu of Iian Sanctions, 0ilPiice, Nay 21, 2u12
19S Iian's Nucleai uiass Eateis, Pioject Synuicate, Apiil u4, 2u12
196 Isiaeli thieats of attack spaikeu new wave of Iian sanctions, officials say, Isiael, Nay 16, 2u12
197 Iianian Expeits Place Fuel Plates into Beait of Tehian Reseaich Reactoi, FARS, Nay 2S, 2u12
IAEA's own iepoits on Iian's nucleai activities, accusing the agency of ielying on
unveiifieu intelligence fiom the 0S anu Isiael.
198
The IAEA's Nay 2u12 iepoit citeu
Tehian's piogiess towaiu eniichment technology with complete coopeiation with
the agency, confiiming the non-weaponizeu status of Iianian nucleai activities.
199

Clinton Bastin, foimei uiiectoi of 0S nucleai weapons piouuction piogiams, has sent
an open lettei to Piesiuent 0bama in Becembei 2u11 iegaiuing the status of Iian's
capacity to piouuce nucleai weapons. Bastin ieiteiates:
Tbe ultimote proJuct of lron´s qos centrifuqe focilities woulJ be biqbly enricbeJ
uronium bexofluoriJe, o qos tbot connot be useJ to moke o weopon. Convertinq tbe qos
to metol, fobricotinq components onJ ossemblinq tbem witb biqb explosives usinq
Jonqerous onJ Jifficult tecbnoloqy tbot bos never been useJ in lron woulJ toke mony
yeors ofter o Jiversion of tbree tons of low enricbeJ uronium qos from fully
sofequorJeJ inventories. Tbe resultinq weopon, if intenJeJ for Jelivery by missile,
woulJ bove o yielJ equivolent to tbot of o kiloton of conventionol biqb explosives.
2uu
Bastin's assessment of Iian's nucleai piogiam fuithei emphasizes the
impiacticality of weaponizing the hexafluoiiue piouuct of Tehian's gas-centiifuges,
as it woulu piouuce a highly inefficient nucleai weapon. If Iian chose to piouuce
nucleai weapons in this way, it woulu take seveial yeais to ieach the 9u%
eniichment levels neeueu foi a nucleai ueteiient. In Naich 2u12, Reuters ieleaseu a
special iepoit entitleu, "Intel shows Iian nucleai thieat not imminent", concluuing
that the 0niteu States, its Euiopean allies anu even Isiael agiee that Tehian uoes not
have a bomb, it has not ueciueu to builu one, anu it is yeais away fiom having a
ueliveiable nucleai waiheau.
2u1
Bespite eviuence that Iian uoes not possess the
capability to builu nucleai weapons, anu with no inuication of Tehian attempting to
uo so, leaueis in Tel Aviv have asseiteu theii iight to conuuct militaiy stiikes against
Iian befoie the 0S Piesiuential elections in Novembei 2u12.
2u2
Following a teiioiist
attack taigeting a bus in Bulgaiia that killeu five Isiaeli touiists in }uly 2u12,
Netanyahu immeuiately issueu statements accusing Bezbollah anu Iian of being
iesponsible foi the attacks, stating:
lron must be exposeJ by tbe internotionol community os tbe premier terrorist
support stote tbot it is, onJ everytbinq sboulJ be Jone to prevent lron, tbe worlJ´s most
Jonqerous reqime, from Jevelopinq tbe worlJ´s most Jonqerous weopons.
2uS
198 Blix: 0S, Isiael souice most of IAEA allegations, PiessTv, Nay 2S, 2u12
199 Envoy: 0N Atomic Repoit Enuoises Peaceful Natuie of Iian's N. Activities, FARS, Nay uS, 2u12
2uu Top 0S Nucleai Expeit Tells 0bama: Theie Is No Weapons Thieat Fiom Iian, LaiouchePac,
Febiuaiy 2S, 2u12
2u1 SPECIAL REP0RT-Intel shows Iian nucleai thieat not imminent, Reuteis, Naich 2S, 2u12
2u2 Isiael takes back piomise to 0bama not to attack Iian befoie the election, Russia Touay, Nay
24, 2u12
The possibility of Isiael uiiectly stiiking chemical weapons convoys in Syiia anu
infiltiating its teiiitoiy, oi stiiking Iian's nucleai eneigy sites, will yielu uangeious
consequences foi the entiie iegion, anu the global economy. Contiaiy to claims of
institutional anti-Semitism emanating fiom Tehian, the founuei of the Islamic
Republic, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, iefeiieu to }uuaism as an honoieu bianch of
the same tiee of monotheism that piouuceu Islam (the laigest population of }ews in
the Niuule East outsiue of Isiael iesiue in Iian), while state meuia has uistinguisheu
between }ews anu Zionists, the lattei being vieweu as the movement to foicefully
claim }ewish teiiitoiial hegemony in what they iegaiu as the heait of the Nuslim
woilu.
2u4
While behinu closeu uoois 0S policy makeis aumit Iian, even if it weie to
obtain nucleai weapons, is uiiven by self-pieseivation anu piotecting the influence it
is steauily gaining thioughout the Niuule Eastein iegion it boiueis, the message they
uespeiately seek to ielate to the public is one of an iiiational, apocalyptic theociacy
eagei to ushei in Aimageuuon. Repoits issueu by the RANB coipoiation note that
Iian has hau chemical weapons in its inventoiy foi uecaues, uesciibing the stiict
contiol that militaiy units exeicise ovei these weapons, making it unlikely they
woulu enu up in the hanus of "teiioiists," oi even Bezbollah.
2uS
The fact that Iian's
extensive chemical weapon stockpile has yet to be uispeiseu into the hanus of non-
state actois, along with the fact that these same militaiy units woulu in tuin hanule
any Iianian nucleai weapons, lenus fuithei eviuence to the conclusion that Iian is
inueeu uiiven by self-pieseivation anu self-uefense.
While the aigument ensues ovei whethei oi not Iian shoulu have nucleai
weapons oi if it intenus to commit genociue against the }ews, the wai against Tehian
has been meticulously planneu in auvanceu anu has alieauy quietly begun. The
Biookings Institution, a 0S-baseu think-tank, was founueu on giants given by the
Cainegie Coipoiation, the Rockefellei Founuation anu the Foiu Founuation, anu
ieceives funuing fiom coipoiate sponsois such as Bank of Ameiica, uoluman Sachs,
Lockheeu Naitin, Exxon, Boeing, ueneial Electiic, anu otheis. In 2uu9, the Biooking
Institute issueu a lengthy iepoit titleu, "Which Path to Peisia." examining ways in
which the 0niteu States can influence iegime change in Tehian.
2u6
The opening pages
of the iepoit cite acknowleugments given by the Smith Richaiuson Founuation, upon
which 0S foieign policy theoietician Zbigniew Bizezinski sits as an acting goveinoi.
The sheei scale of the militaiy options consiueieu by Biookings' stiategy woulu
cieate immense piofits foi the uefense contiactois that sponsoi it, iegaiuless of the
opeiation's success. The iepoit opens with the fiank ueclaiation that Iian is a
confounuing nation that unueimines Ameiica's inteiests anu influence in the Niuule
East. Not once is it mentioneu that the Islamic Republic poses any uiiect thieat to the
2uS Benjamin Netanyahu: Iian is the most uangeious iegime in the woilu, The Telegiaph, }uly 19,
2u12
2u4 Iian's }ews ieject cash offei to move to Isiael, The uuaiuian, }uly 12, 2uu7
2uS Integiating Counteipiolifeiation into Befense Planning, RANB Coipoiation, 2uu7
2u6 Which Path to Peisia. The Biookings Institution, }une 2uu9
secuiity of the 0niteu States itself. In fact, Iian is uesciibeu as a nation intentionally
avoiuing piovocations that woulu justify militaiy opeiations to be conuucteu against
it. Iian's motivations aie listeu as being iueological, nationalistic, anu secuiity uiiven
- veiy unueistanuable, consiueiing the conuition of its neighbois, who have been
invaueu anu occupieu by foieign foices. The ciux of the issue is that Ameiica's
inteiests in the iegion, not secuiity, motivate it to confiont Iian, a theme that iepeats
itself incessantly thioughout the 1S6-page iepoit.
- Sanctions {Page 39]
Ior tbose wbo fovor reqime cbonqe or o militory ottock on lron {eitber by tbe
0niteJ Stotes or lsroel), tbere is o stronq orqument to be moJe for tryinq tbis option
first. lncitinq reqime cbonqe in lron woulJ be qreotly ossisteJ by convincinq tbe
lronion people tbot tbeir qovernment is so iJeoloqicolly blinkereJ tbot it refuses to Jo
wbot is best for tbe people onJ insteoJ clinqs to o policy tbot coulJ only brinq ruin on
tbe country. Tbe iJeol scenorio in tbis cose woulJ be tbot tbe 0niteJ Stotes onJ tbe
internotionol community present o pockoqe of positive inJucements so enticinq tbot
tbe lronion citizenry woulJ support tbe Jeol, only to bove tbe reqime reject it.
ln o similor vein, ony militory operotion oqoinst lron will likely be very unpopulor
orounJ tbe worlJ onJ require tbe proper internotionol context÷botb to ensure tbe
loqisticol support tbe operotion woulJ require onJ to minimize tbe blowbock from it.
Tbe best woy to minimize internotionol opprobrium onJ moximize support {bowever
qruJqinq or covert), is to strike only wben tbere is o wiJespreoJ conviction tbot tbe
lronions were qiven but tben rejecteJ o superb offer÷one so qooJ tbot only o reqime
JetermineJ to ocquire nucleor weopons onJ ocquire tbem for tbe wronq reosons woulJ
turn it Jown. 0nJer tbose circumstonces, tbe 0niteJ Stotes {or lsroel) coulJ portroy its
operotions os token in sorrow, not onqer, onJ ot leost some in tbe internotionol
community woulJ concluJe tbot tbe lronions "brouqbt it on tbemselves" by refusinq o
very qooJ Jeol.
Regime change anu peihaps even militaiy opeiations against Iian aie talkeu
about as a foiegone conclusion, with the Biookings Institution using the pietext of
sanctions as meiely a means of inciemental escalation to tip-toe the woilu into
backing iegime change, incluuing wai if neeu be. Biookings suggests coeicing the
Iianian goveinment, without iegime change, thiough ciippling sanctions veisus
incentives. The pioposeu incentives, in tuin, appeai moie a ielief fiom Ameiican
imposeu economic punishment than anything of actual substance. Biookings
suggests "secuiity guaiantees" fiom an Ameiican invasion to auuiess the veiy ieal
conceins that woulu motivate Iian to constiuct nucleai weapons in the fiist place,
noting that conciete action woulu be neeueu by the 0S in oiuei to fulfill this
incentive, incluuing uiawing uown 0S foices in the Niuule East, a concession
Biookings itself aumits is highly unlikely ovei the next seveial uecaues.
Biookings inteijects at this point, a biazen aumission that unuei no ciicumstance
shoulu the 0S giant Iian a position of uominance, noi shoulu theie be any ambiguity
about what Washington sees as Tehian's iole in the iegion. This option of
"peisuasion" appeais to have alieauy playeu out anu faileu, both in uiawing
concessions fiom Iian thiough meaningless offeis anu at maishaling the
inteinational suppoit neeueu to make auuitional sanctions effective. Biookings's
iepoit notes on Page 24, that the ieal thieat is not the ueployment of nucleai
weapons, but iathei the ueteiience they piesent, allowing Iian to countei 0S
influence in the iegion without the feai of an Ameiican invasion. In othei woius, the
playing fielu woulu become level anu Ameiica may be foiceu to iecognize Iian's
national soveieignty in iegaius to its own iegional inteiests. The iepoit conceues
that Iian's leaueiship may be aggiessive, but not ieckless. The possession of nucleai
weapons woulu be useu as an absolute last iesoit, consiueiing Ameiican anu even
Isiaeli nucleai ueteiience capabilities.
- Invasion {Page ó5]
lf tbe 0niteJ Stotes were to JeciJe tbot, to qorner qreoter internotionol support,
qolvonize 0.S. Jomestic support, onJ,or proviJe o leqol justificotion for on invosion, it
woulJ be best to woit for on lronion provocotion, tben tbe time frome for on invosion
miqbt stretcb out inJefinitely. Witb only one reol exception, since tbe 1979 revolution,
tbe lslomic Republic bos never willinqly provokeJ on Americon militory response,
oltbouqb it certoinly bos token octions tbot coulJ bove Jone so if Wosbinqton boJ been
lookinq for o fiqbt.
Tbus it is not impossible tbot Tebron miqbt toke some oction tbot woulJ justify on
Americon invosion onJ it is certoinly tbe cose tbot if Wosbinqton souqbt sucb o
provocotion, it coulJ toke octions tbot miqbt moke it more likely tbot Tebron woulJ Jo
so {oltbouqb beinq too obvious obout tbis coulJ nullify tbe provocotion). Eowever,
since it woulJ be up to lron to moke tbe provocotive move, wbicb lron bos been wory of
Joinq most times in tbe post, tbe 0niteJ Stotes woulJ never know for sure wben it
woulJ qet tbe requisite lronion provocotion. ln foct, it miqbt never come ot oll.
This exceipt is nothing less than 0S policy-makeis openly talking about
puiposefully piovoking a nation in oiuei to justify a full-scale invasion that woulu
otheiwise be untenable. If such tieacheiy, at the cost of thousanus of Ameiican lives
anu peihaps millions of Iianian lives, is openly talkeu about within the halls of these
coipoiate-funueu think tanks, what uo they talk about that isn't on iecoiu. Inueeu, a
conventional wai with Iian is cuiiently impossible, as acknowleugeu by the
Biookings Institution. What is woiiying is that they believe it woulu not be
impossible if only Ameiica weie piesenteu with the "piopei" piovocations.
Biookings's expeits go on to say that Washington coulu take "ceitain actions" to
ensuie such piovocations took place.
Fuitheimoie, Biookings states that Iian has alieauy gone thiough extieme
measuies specifically not to ieact to Ameiican piovocations, iaising the spectei that
piovocations may take the shape of a stageu event insteau, shoulu full-scale invasion
be sought.
- United Front Against Iran {Page óó]
Host Furopeon, Asion, onJ HiJJle Fostern publics ore JeoJ set oqoinst ony
Americon militory oction oqoinst lron JeriveJ from tbe current Jifferences between
lron onJ tbe internotionol community÷let olone lron onJ tbe 0niteJ Stotes. 0tber
tbon o Tebron-sponsoreJ 9,11, it is borJ to imoqine wbot woulJ cbonqe tbeir minJs.
Ior mony Jemocrocies onJ some froqile outocrocies to wbicb Wosbinqton woulJ be
lookinq for support, tbis public ontipotby is likely to prove Jecisive. Ior instonce, SouJi
Arobio is positively opoplectic obout tbe lronions´ nucleor proqrom, os well os obout
tbeir miscbief-mokinq in lebonon, lroq, onJ tbe Polestinion territories. Yet, so for,
RiyoJb bos moJe cleor tbot it will not support militory operotions of ony kinJ oqoinst
lron. Certoinly tbot coulJ cbonqe, but it is borJ to imoqine wbot it woulJ toke.
6iven tbot tbis situotion bos not been enouqb to pusb tbe 6CC to support militory
operotions oqoinst lron, wbot woulJ? Certoinly, lron testinq o nucleor Jevice miqbt,
but ot tbot point, it olmost certoinly woulJ be too lote: if tbe 0niteJ Stotes is qoinq to
invoJe lron, it will wont to Jo so before lron bos JevelopeJ octuol nucleor weopons,
not ofter. lt is borJ to know wbot else lron coulJ Jo tbot woulJ cbonqe 6CC ottituJes
obout tbe use of force unless new leoJers took power in tbe 6ulf wbo were for more
JetermineJ to stop lron tbon tbe current leoJersbip is.
As the exceipt makes mention of "new leaueis" taking ovei in the uulf, funuing
anu suppoit foi insuigents in Syiia by 0S allies such as Sauui Aiabia inuicates that
the Kinguom's foieign policy anu that of the uulf Coopeiation Council is in line with
Washington anu Tel Aviv's objectives in the iegion. 0nuoubteuly, leaueis of nations in
the Peisian uulf woulu favoi biinging about uestabilization coveitly, thiough the
kinu of insuigency anu psychological opeiations caiiieu out in Syiia, iathei than
open militaiy confiontation oi stiikes leu by Washington oi Tel Aviv.
- Manufacturing Provocations {Page 84 - 85]
lt woulJ be for more preferoble if tbe 0niteJ Stotes coulJ cite on lronion
provocotion os justificotion for tbe oirstrikes before louncbinq tbem. Cleorly, tbe more
outroqeous, tbe more JeoJly, onJ tbe more unprovokeJ tbe lronion oction, tbe better
off tbe 0niteJ Stotes woulJ be. 0f course, it woulJ be very Jifficult for tbe 0niteJ Stotes
to qooJ lron into sucb o provocotion witbout tbe rest of tbe worlJ recoqnizinq tbis
qome, wbicb woulJ tben unJermine it. {0ne metboJ tbot woulJ bove some possibility
of success woulJ be to rotcbet up covert reqime cbonqe efforts in tbe bope tbot Tebron
woulJ retoliote overtly, or even semi-overtly, wbicb coulJ tben be portroyeJ os on
unprovokeJ oct of lronion oqqression.)
Tbis suqqests tbot tbis option miqbt benefit from beinq belJ in obeyonce until sucb
time os tbe lronions moJe on oppropriotely provocotive move, os tbey Jo from time to
time. ln tbot cose, it woulJ be less o JetermineJ policy to employ oirstrikes onJ,
insteoJ, more of on opportunistic bope tbot lron woulJ proviJe tbe 0niteJ Stotes witb
tbe kinJ of provocotion tbot woulJ justify oirstrikes. Eowever, tbot woulJ meon tbot
tbe use of oirstrikes coulJ not be tbe primory 0.S. policy toworJ lron {even if it were
Wosbinqton´s fervent preference), but merely on oncillory continqency to onotber
option tbot woulJ be tbe primory policy unless onJ until lron proviJeJ tbe necessory
pretext.
The plotting of a ueceitful gambit to goau a soveieign nation into wai is again in
sight, a notion Biookings notes time anu time again since Iian has no inteiest in
aimeu conflict with the 0niteu States. The iefeience to "coveit iegime change
effoits" is useu as a means of applying piessuie to fuithei political escalation anu
subsequent militaiy inteivention. Such stiategies uesciibe the kinu of violent
scenaiios that have unfolueu in Libya anu Syiia, wheie foieign suppoit encouiageu
the use of violence, to which national goveinments weie foiceu to ieact, with the
iesponse then seiving as an impetus foi expanueu foieign inteivention. Biookings
notes that such piovocations must be caiiieu out without iaising suspicions of the
"game" being playeu thioughout the woilu, insinuating the loss of cieuibility that
woulu come with mainstieam acknowleugement of long institutionalizeu aggiession
anu foieign subveision.
- Foreign-Funded Color Revolution {Page 105]
Tbe 0niteJ Stotes coulJ ploy multiple roles in focilitotinq o revolution. By funJinq
onJ belpinq orqonize Jomestic rivols of tbe reqime, tbe 0niteJ Stotes coulJ creote on
olternotive leoJersbip to seize power. As RoymonJ Tonter of tbe lron Policy Committee
orques, stuJents onJ otber qroups "neeJ covert bockinq for tbeir Jemonstrotions. Tbey
neeJ fox mocbines. Tbey neeJ internet occess, funJs to Juplicote moteriols, onJ funJs
to keep viqilontes from beotinq tbem up." BeyonJ tbis, 0.S.-bockeJ meJio outlets coulJ
biqbliqbt reqime sbortcominqs onJ moke otberwise obscure critics more prominent.
Tbe 0niteJ Stotes olreoJy supports Persion-lonquoqe sotellite television {voice of
Americo Persion) onJ roJio {RoJio IorJo) tbot brinq unfiltereJ news to lronions {in
recent yeors, tbese bove token tbe lion´s sbore of overt 0.S. funJinq for promotinq
Jemocrocy in lron). 0.S. economic pressure {onJ perbops militory pressure os well) con
JiscreJit tbe reqime, mokinq tbe populotion bunqry for o rivol leoJersbip.
Policy-makeis at the Biookings Institution make outiight calls to cieate the
conuitions within Iian, oi any taiget nation foi that mattei, that aie likely to coax
civil uniest. They suggest funuing anu oiganizing that uniest anu using uomestic anu
foieign meuia to manipulate public peiception anu peipetuate 0S-backeu anti-
Tehian piopaganua. This mouel is useu in neaily eveiy countiy taigeteu foi
uestabilization, geneially funueu by oiganizations like the National Enuowment foi
Bemociacy (NEB), so-calleu "inuepenuent meuia" oiganizations anu human iights
Nu0s that "make otheiwise obscuie ciitics moie piominent." The NEB-funueu
Pioject on Niuule East Bemociacy is one such piopaganua outlet opeiating
thioughout the Niuule East, piopagating the official 0S naiiative in iegaius to uniest
fomenteu fiom Egypt to Syiia. Biookings openly mentions voice of Americo's Faisi
language seivice, while othei examples incluue Southeast Asia's NEB-funueu
Piachatai of Thailanu, anu Rauio Fiee Euiope in Eastein Euiope, a subsiuiaiy with
v0A unuei the Bioaucasting Boaiu of uoveinois, upon which Secietaiy of State
Billaiy Clinton sits as a membei. This global netwoik of "uemociacy piomotion"
feeus the mainstieam meuia theii talking points, which aie then iepeateu veibatim
oi citeu outiight as ieputable souices. Biookings's aumission that these institutions
exist to piotect anu expanu 0S inteiests thioughout the iegion, while uiminishing
Iian's ability to challenge those inteiests, is significant. This aumission uemonstiates
conclusively that these vaiious institutions uo not seive to piomote uemociacy,
piotect fieeuom, oi even piotect Ameiica fiom a genuine secuiity thieat, but iathei
seive the geopolitical anu stiategic objectives of the 0niteu States.
- Assisting Popular Revolutions witb Military Force {Page 109 - 110]
Consequently, if tbe 0niteJ Stotes ever succeeJs in sporkinq o revolt oqoinst tbe
clericol reqime, Wosbinqton moy bove to consiJer wbetber to proviJe it [tbe revolt]
witb some form of militory support to prevent Tebron from crusbinq it. Tbis
requirement meons tbot o populor revolution in lron Joes not seem to fit tbe moJel of
tbe "velvet revolutions" tbot occurreJ elsewbere. Tbe point is tbot tbe lronion reqime
moy not be willinq to qo qently into tbot qooJ niqbt; insteoJ, onJ unlike so mony
Fostern Furopeon reqimes, it moy cboose to fiqbt to tbe Jeotb. ln tbose circumstonces,
if tbere is not externol militory ossistonce to tbe revolutionories, tbey miqbt not just foil
but be mossocreJ. Consequently, if tbe 0niteJ Stotes is to pursue tbis policy,
Wosbinqton must toke tbis possibility into consiJerotion. lt oJJs some very importont
requirements to tbe list: eitber tbe policy must incluJe woys to weoken tbe lronion
militory or weoken tbe willinqness of tbe reqime´s leoJers to coll on tbe militory, or else
tbe 0niteJ Stotes must be reoJy to intervene to Jefeot it.
Quite cleaily, aftei pieviously conspiiing to implement foieign-funueu uniest, the
pieuictable ciackuown by Iianian secuiity foices to iestoie oiuei "iequiies" some
foim of ueteiient oi militaiy suppoit to be employeu in oiuei to pievent the
movement fiom being ciusheu. This scenaiio mateiializeu in Libya, wheie foieign-
funueu insuigents weie likeneu to "unaimeu civilians" shoitly aftei theii iebellion
began, piioi to NAT0 foices inteivening to pievent the aimeu upiising fiom being
uefeateu by uauuafi's foices.
- US Sponsored Terrorism {Page 113]
Tbe 0niteJ Stotes coulJ work witb qroups like tbe lroq-boseJ Notionol Council of
Resistonce of lron {NCRl) onJ its militory winq, tbe HujobeJin-e Kbolq {HFK), belpinq
tbe tbousonJs of its members wbo, unJer SoJJom Eusoyn´s reqime, were ormeJ onJ
boJ conJucteJ querrillo onJ terrorist operotions oqoinst tbe clericol reqime. Altbouqb
tbe NCRl is supposeJly JisormeJ toJoy, tbot coulJ quickly be cbonqeJ.
- Mu|abedin-e Kbalq & Armed Insurgency {Page 117 - 118 & 121]
Perbops tbe most prominent {onJ certoinly tbe most controversiol) opposition
qroup tbot bos ottrocteJ ottention os o potentiol 0.S. proxy is tbe NCRl {Notionol
Council of Resistonce of lron), tbe politicol movement estoblisbeJ by tbe HFK
{HujobeJin-e Kbolq). Critics believe tbe qroup to be unJemocrotic onJ unpopulor, onJ
inJeeJ onti-Americon. ln controst, tbe qroup´s cbompions contenJ tbot tbe movement´s
lonq-stonJinq opposition to tbe lronion reqime onJ recorJ of successful ottocks on onJ
intelliqence-qotberinq operotions oqoinst tbe reqime moke it wortby of 0.S. support.
Tbey olso orque tbot tbe qroup is no lonqer onti-Americon onJ question tbe merit of
eorlier occusotions. RoymonJ Tonter, one of tbe qroup´s supporters in tbe 0niteJ
Stotes, contenJs tbot tbe HFK onJ tbe NCRl ore ollies for reqime cbonqe in Tebron onJ
olso oct os o useful proxy for qotberinq intelliqence. Tbe HFK´s qreotest intelliqence
coup wos tbe provision of intelliqence in 2002 tbot leJ to tbe Jiscovery of o secret site
in lron for enricbinq uronium.
Bespite its JefenJers´ cloims, tbe HFK remoins on tbe 0.S. qovernment list of foreiqn
terrorist orqonizotions. ln tbe 1970s, tbe qroup killeJ tbree 0.S. officers onJ tbree
civilion controctors in lron. Burinq tbe 1979-1980 bostoqe crisis, tbe qroup proiseJ tbe
Jecision to toke Americon bostoqes onJ Floine Sciolino reporteJ tbot, wbile qroup
leoJers publicly conJemneJ tbe 9,11 ottocks, witbin tbe qroup celebrotions were
wiJespreoJ. 0nJeniobly, tbe qroup bos conJucteJ terrorist ottocks÷often excuseJ by
tbe HFK´s oJvocotes becouse tbey ore JirecteJ oqoinst tbe lronion qovernment. Ior
exomple, in 1981, tbe qroup bombeJ tbe beoJquorters of tbe lslomic Republic Porty,
wbicb wos tben tbe clericol leoJersbip´s moin politicol orqonizotion, killinq on
estimoteJ 70 senior officiols. Hore recently, tbe qroup bos cloimeJ creJit for over o
Jozen mortor ottocks, ossossinotions, onJ otber ossoults on lronion civilion onJ
militory torqets between 1998 onJ 2001. At tbe very leost, to work more closely witb
tbe qroup {ot leost in on overt monner), Wosbinqton woulJ neeJ to remove it from tbe
list of foreiqn terrorist orqonizotions.
An aiticleu publisheu in the New Yorker by jouinalist Seymoui Beish titleu, "0ui
Nen in Iian." uocuments how membeis of Nujahiueen-e-Khalq (NEK), an Iianian
uissiuent gioup anu 0S State Bepaitment-listeu teiioiist oiganization, weie tiaineu
in communications, ciyptogiaphy, small-unit tactics anu weaponiy by the }oint
Special 0peiations Commanu (}S0C) at a base in Nevaua staiting in 2uuS.
2u7
}S0C
instiucteu NEK opeiatives on how to penetiate majoi Iianian communications
systems, allowing the gioup to inteicept telephone calls anu text messages insiue
Iian foi the puipose of shaiing them with Ameiican intelligence. The gioup has been
implicateu in the assassination of Iianian nucleai scientists anu the planting of the
Stuxnet malwaie that sabotageu Iian's nucleai facility in Natanz.
2u8

NEK was founueu in 196S as a Naixist Islamic mass political movement aimeu at
agitating the monaichy of the 0S-backeu Iianian Shah, Nohammau Reza Pahlavi. The
gioup initially siueu with ievolutionaiy cleiics leu by Ayatollah Khomeini following
the 1979 Islamic Revolution, but eventually tuineu away fiom the iegime uuiing a
powei stiuggle that iesulteu in the gioup waging uiban gueiilla waifaie against
Iian's Revolutionaiy uuaius in 1981. The oiganization was latei given iefuge by
Sauuam Bussein anu mounteu attacks on Iian fiom within Iiaqi teiiitoiy, killing an
estimateu 17,uuu Iianian nationals in the piocess.
2u9
NEK exists as the main
component of the Paiis-baseu National Council of Resistance of Iian (NCRI), a
"coalition of uemociatic Iianian oiganizations, gioups anu peisonalities," calling
itself a "pailiament-in-exile" anu seeking to "establish a uemociatic, seculai anu
coalition goveinment" in Iian. Following the toppling of Sauuam Bussein, 0N special
iepiesentative in Iiaq Naitin Koblei oiganizeu effoits to ielocate NEK insuigents to
a foimei 0S militaiy base neai the Baghuau aiipoit, with the full suppoit of the 0S
Embassy in Iiaq anu the State Bepaitment in oiuei to avoiu violent clashes between
the NEK anu the Shiite-leu Iiaqi goveinment.
21u
NEK has long ieceiveu mateiial assistance fiom Isiael, who assisteu the
oiganization with bioaucasting into Iian fiom theii political base in Paiis, while the
NEK anu NCRI have iepoiteuly pioviueu the 0niteu States with intelligence on Iian's
nucleai piogiam. Bespite the uocumenteu cases of atiocities committeu by NEK
foices, eluei statesmen such as foimei NAT0 Supieme Allieu Commanuei ueneial
Wesley K. Claik, foimei New Yoik City Nayoi Ruuy uiuliani, anu foimei 9¡11
Commission Chaiiman Lee Bamilton weie paiu $2u,uuu to $Su,uuu pei engagement
to enuoise the iemoval of the Nujahiueen-e Khalq fiom the 0S State Bepaitment's
list of Foieign Teiioiist 0iganizations.
211
A iecent investigation by the 0S Tieasuiy
Bepaitment has inuicateu that the Nujaheuin-e Khalq 0iganization is financially
2u7 0ui Nen in Iian. The New Yoikei, Apiil u6, 2u12
2u8 Isiael teams with teiioi gioup to kill Iian's nucleai scientists, 0.S. officials tell NBC News, NBC, Febiuaiy
u9, 2u12
2u9 Noqtaua Saui Reiteiates Iiaqis' Bemanu foi Expulsion of NK0 Teiioiists, FARS, Septembei u9,
2u11
21u Aie the NEK's 0.S. fiienus its woist enemies. Foieign Policy, Naich u8, 2u12
sponsoieu by the Isiaeli iegime anu Sauui Aiabia.
212
0pon launching a wai against
Iian, aggiessoi nations woulu likely utilize NEK foices as opposition insuigents anu
coulu even iecognize the touteu "pailiament-in-exile", the National Council of
Resistance of Iian, as Iian's "legitimate iepiesentative," much like the Fiienus of
Syiia gioup has iecognizeu the opposition Syiian National Council.
21S
- Potential Etbnic Proxies {Page 113]
Ior instonce, tbe 0niteJ Stotes coulJ opt to work primorily witb vorious unboppy
lronion etbnic qroups {KurJs, Bolucb, Arobs, onJ so on) wbo bove fouqbt tbe reqime ot
vorious perioJs since tbe revolution. A coolition of etbnic opposition movements,
porticulorly if combineJ witb JissiJent Persions, woulJ pose o serious tbreot to reqime
stobility. ln oJJition, tbe unrest tbe qroups tbemselves creote coulJ weoken tbe reqime
ot bome. At tbe leost, tbe reqime woulJ bove to Jivert resources to puttinq Jown tbe
rebellions. At most, tbe unrest miqbt JiscreJit tbe reqime overtime, weokeninq its
position vis-o-vis its rivols.
Bespite the shameless biavauo uisplayeu thioughout the entiie iepoit, no section
is as unsettling as the one titleu "Inspiiing an Insuigency," wheie Biookings outiight
auvocates the funuing, tiaining, anu tiiggeiing of a full-blown aimeu insuigency
against the goveinment of Iian. The iepoit specifically mentions Ahvazi Aiab
sepaiatists, who woulu latei be the subject of Seymoui Beish's "Piepaiing the
Battlefielu" wheie he exposes the option as alieauy being set in motion within
Iian.
214
Ethnic Kuius in the Noith, anu Baloch iebels neai Pakistan in the East aie
also mentioneu as potential iecipients of 0S aiu in conuucting theii campaigns of
aimeu teiioi against the Iianian people. The CIA is selecteu to hanule supplies anu
tiaining, while Biookings suggests that options foi moie uiiect militaiy suppoit also
be consiueieu. In theii subsection, "Finuing a Pioxy," Biookings uesciibes how the
use of ethnic tensions coulu fuel uniest. It laments the fact that many ethnic
minoiities still holu nationalism as a piioiity along with theii fellow Peisians.
Bespite being on Ameiica's official teiioiist list foi having pieviously killeu 0S
militaiy men, the Nujaheuin-e Khalq aie given ample consiueiation within
Biookings's iepoit. In theii subsection, "Finuing a Conuuit anu Safe Baven,"
Biookings uesciibes vaiious methous of haiboiing theii stable of 0S-funueu
teiioiists within the nations cuiiently occupieu by 0S tioops anu how to feiiy them
in anu out of Iian between opeiations. Ceitainly, if the 0niteu States went thiough
with aiming anu funuing NEK, they themselves woulu become "state sponsois of
teiioiism" - even as they continue to fight a uecaue-long wai against supposeuly just
that. NEK is unequivocally a teiioiist oiganization that inuisciiminately taigets
211 Nujahiueen-e Khalq: Foimei 0.S. 0fficials Nake Nillions Auvocating Foi Teiioiist 0iganization, The Buffington Post, }uly
u8, 2u12
212 Isiael funus teiioiist NK0: Investigation, PiessTv, Nay 24, 2u12
21S Fiienus of Syiia iecognize SNC as 'legitimate iepiesentative,' Russia Touay, Apiil u1, 2u12
214 Piepaiing the Battlefielu, The New Yoikei, }uly u7, 2uu7
civilians along with theii political opponents, anu yet, they aie consiueieu a potential
pioxy, anu consiueiations foi theii iemoval fiom the appaiently meaningless
"foieign teiioiist oiganizations" list aie baseu solely on theii usefulness in auvancing
0S foieign policy.
- Fomenting a Military Coup {Page 123 - 124]
Hountinq o coup is borJ work, especiolly in o stote os poronoiJ obout foreiqn
influence onJ meJJlinq os lron is. Tbe 0niteJ Stotes woulJ first bove to moke contoct
witb members of lron´s militory {onJ likely its security services os well). Tbis by itself is
very Jifficult. Becouse of lronion bypersensitivity to Americons, tbe 0niteJ Stotes woulJ
likely bove to rely on "cutouts"÷tbirJ porty notionols workinq on bebolf of tbe 0niteJ
Stotes÷wbicb invoriobly introJuces consiJeroble complexity. Tben tbe 0niteJ Stotes
woulJ bove to use tbose contocts to try to iJentify lronion militory personnel wbo were
botb willinq onJ oble to stoqe o coup, wbicb woulJ be more Jifficult still; it woulJ be
borJ enouqb for Americons to moke contoct witb lronion militory officers, let olone
moke contoct witb tbose specific inJiviJuols willinq to risk tbeir lives onJ tbeir fomilies
in o coup ottempt.
0f course, it is possible tbot if Wosbinqton mokes very cleor tbot it is tryinq to
support o coup in lron, tbe coup plotters will reocb out to tbe 0niteJ Stotes. But tbis is
very rore: bistory sbows tbot coup plotters willinq to expose tbemselves to onotber
notionol qovernment ore usuolly JiscovereJ onJ killeJ; furtbermore, most of tbose
cominq to tbe 0niteJ Stotes to osk for belp overtbrowinq tbis or tbot qovernment tenJ
to be poseurs or even counterintelliqence oqents of tbe torqeteJ qovernment.
It shoulu be noteu that the Biookings iepoit suggests that all options - populai
ievolution, insuigency, anu coup - be useu concuiiently in the hopes that at least one
may succeeu. It also suggests that "helpful syneigies" might be cieateu among them
to fuithei miie the taigeteu iegime. The Biookings iepoit itself makes iefeience to
the histoiical pieceuence of the 0niteu States successfully "mounting a coup" in Iian,
pioviuing 19SS's 0peiation Ajax as a notable example:
Altbouqb mony coups ore bomeqrown, one obvious bistoric moJel of o foreiqn-
ossisteJ coup in lron is 0perotion Ajox, tbe 19SS coup J´étot tbot overtbrew tbe
qovernment of Prime Hinister HobommeJ HossoJeq onJ reinstoteJ tbe rule of Sbob
Rezo Poblovi. To corry out tbe coup, tbe ClA onJ Britisb intelliqence supporteJ 6enerol
Iozlollob ZobeJi, proviJinq bim onJ bis followers witb money onJ propoqonJo, os well
os belpinq orqonize tbeir octivities. (Page 1Su)
It is inconceivable that one coulu ieau the pages of "Which Path to Peisia." anu
not unueistanu the cuiient "inteinational community" as anything less than
absolutely illegitimate. Westein leaueis have histoiically contiiveu a myiiau of laws
with which to iestiain anu eliminate theii competition, while iemaining entiiely
uninhibiteu themselves in theii own oveit ciiminality, extoiting anu coeicing the
woilu to confoim to its "inteiests." This iepoit iepiesents the full aiiay of options
not only foi use in Iian, but thioughout the woilu. With the 0S-funueu "Aiab Spiing"
as a ieal woilu mouel, one can plainly see how the methouology outlineu in the
iepoit has been useu to uestabilize anu uepose iegimes as well as instigate wais of
aggiession. It is essential that iepoits of this natuie be wiuely ciiculateu anu maue
public knowleuge, exposing the methouology anu aichitects of aggiessive Westein
foieign policy. As the iepoit itself states numeious times, the vast majoiity of theii
gambits iequiie seciecy, "plausible ueniability," to caiiy out theii iueas "without the
iest of the woilu iecognizing this game."
Bespite the shoitcomings of the auministiation in Tehian, lawmakeis anu senioi
officials have auvocateu inteinational coopeiation, uialogue anu piagmatism with
iegaiu to the Syiian issue. 0n August 9th, 2u12, Iian hosteu an Inteinational
Consultative Confeience, biinging togethei iepiesentatives of thiity nations to call
foi enuing the flow of foieign aims into teiioiist hanus insiue Syiia, pioposals to
biokei a meaningful ceasefiie, the cooiuination of humanitaiian aiu, anu suppoit foi
Syiian people's iight to iefoim without foieign inteifeience.
21S
The unique
confeience featuieu iepiesentatives of ovei half of the woilu's population, incluuing
nations such as Russia, China, Inuia, Pakistan, Inuonesia, anu venezuela, signaling
that, inueeu, Syiia's goveinment is not as "isolateu" as poitiayeu by Westein meuia.
The 0niteu States uownplayeu the significance of the confeience anu ciiticizeu the
Islamic Republic foi suppoiting Bashai al-Assau's goveinment. Iian's stance on Syiia
is best elaboiateu in an August 2u12 0p-Eu in the Washington Post, authoieu by
Iianian Foieign Ninistei Ali Akbai Salehi:
lron seeks o solution tbot is in tbe interest of everyone. Syrion society is o beoutiful
mosoic of etbnicities, foitbs onJ cultures, onJ it will be smosbeJ to pieces sboulJ
PresiJent Bosbor ol-AssoJ obruptly foll. Tbe iJeo tbot, in tbot event, tbere woulJ be on
orJerly tronsition of power is on illusion. Abrupt politicol cbonqe witbout o rooJmop
for monoqeJ politicol tronsition will leoJ only to o precorious situotion tbot woulJ
Jestobilize one of tbe worlJ´s most sensitive reqions. lron is port of tbe solution, not tbe
problem. As tbe worlJ bos witnesseJ Jurinq tbe post JecoJe, we bove octeJ os o
stobilizinq force in lroq onJ Afqboniston, two otber Huslim countries tbrown into
turmoil. Tbe stobility of our reqion is poromount for worlJ peoce onJ tronquility.
216
Tehian has suppoiteu Kofi Annan's six-point plan anu has shown willingness to
facilitate talks between the Syiian goveinment anu the opposition. Foieign Ninistei
Salehi has ieiteiateu Tehian's suppoit foi the kinu of political iefoim that will ensuie
that people have the iight to paiticipate in fiee anu faii piesiuential elections unuei
inteinational supeivision. Fuitheimoie, Iian has opposeu "any foieign inteifeience
anu militaiy inteivention in iesolving the Syiian ciisis" anu has pioviueu meuical
anu humanitaiian aiu to Syiia thiough the Iianian Reu Ciescent.
217
0nuoubteuly,
Iian's effoits at uiplomatically negotiating an enu to the Syiian conflict ueseive
iespect anu appiopiiate acknowleugement. The iationality of Tehian's appioach is
ultimately a testament to Iian's value as a iesponsible anu viable membei of the
inteinational community.
Tbe Sino-Russian Position
21S 27 Woilu Countiies Attenuing Tehian Confeience on Syiia, FARS, August u9, 2u12
216 Taking the leau on Syiia, The Washington Post, August u9, 2u12
217 Iian's Reu Ciescent to uispatch humanitaiian aiu to Syiia, Islamic Republic News Agency, Nay
21, 2u12
While the Syiian conflict has ueeply uiviueu inteinational opinion, the steauy
non-inteiventionist stance of Russia anu China has been subjecteu to haish ciiticism
foi pieventing the 0niteu Nations Secuiity Council fiom passing iesolutions allowing
foieign militaiy inteivention. Nost famously, 0S Secietaiy of State Bilaiy Clinton
thieateneu that Russia anu China woulu "pay a piice" foi theii position on the Syiian
issue, piompting the Russian Foieign Ninistiy to categoiically ieject accusations of
backing Bashai al-Assau anu shaiing complicity in bloousheu anu civilian ueaths in
Syiia.
218
While Clinton attempts to blame Russia anu China foi "holuing up piogiess"
in attempts to oveithiow the Assau goveinment, it is moie likely that the 0niteu
States' own loss of legitimacy is the ieason it has not successfully convinceu the
woilu to go along with a self-seiving anu veiy untenable agenua. The iueology
behinu the Russian anu Chinese foieign policy is best summaiizeu by China's
ambassauoi to the 0niteu Nations, Li Baouong:
We [Jo] not bove intention to protect onyboJy oqoinst onyboJy. Wbot we reolly
wont to see is tbot tbe sovereiqnty of tbot country con be sofequorJeJ, onJ tbe Jestiny
of tbot country con be in tbe bonJs of tbe people in Syrio.
219
The uespeiate uefamation anu thieatening ihetoiic of the 0S State Bepaitment
comes at a time when the expanuing Sino-Russian alliance uiiectly impeues Westein
encioachment into stiategically sensitive iegions that aie vital to the uevelopment
anu secuiity of Beijing anu Noscow. In staik contiast to the Westein auventuiism of
foieign inteivention unuei the guise of "piotecting human iights" anu "Ameiican
piinciples," the uiplomatic stance of the emeiging Shanghai Coopeiation
0iganization is one that values the tenets of national soveieignty ovei a mouel wheie
outsiue foices uictate the futuie of an inuepenuent nation anu its goveinment.
Although uiplomatic ciiticisms have often been muteu, Foieign Ninistei Seigey
Laviov has biought Russia back into the centei of inteinational uecision-making
with Noscow's fiim stance towaiu the Westein embiace of Syiia's aimeu insuigents:
Tbis is Jirect enJorsement of terrorism. Eow ore we supposeJ to unJerstonJ tbot?
Tbis is o sinister position; l connot finJ worJs to express our ottituJe toworJs tbot. ln
otber worJs tbis meons "We ore qoinq to support sucb octs of terrorism until tbe 0NSC
Joes wbot we wont."
22u
Since ieassuming his post as Russia's Piesiuent, vlauimii Putin, an aiuent ciitic of
NAT0's opeiation in Libya, has peisonally engageu both membeis of the Assau
goveinment anu the opposition Syiian National Council, in auuition to Tuikish Piime
Ninistei Eiuogan, Isiaeli Piime Ninistei Netanyahu, anu 0S Piesiuent 0bama, in an
attempt to pievent the fuithei ueteiioiation of the situation. Both Piesiuent Putin
anu Foieign Ninistei Laviov have shown stiingent auheience to 0N Envoy Kofi
Annan's six point peace plan, which calls foi the immeuiate cessation of violence,
uialogue, anu a 0N-backeu ceasefiie. Putin has waineu of ceaseless civil wai if the
218 Clinton: Russia anu China will 'pay piice' foi suppoiting Assau, Russia Touay, }uly u6, 2u12
219 China says it's not piotecting Syiia's Assau, AP, }une u4, 2u12
22u 0S position on Syiia uiiectly enuoises teiioiism - Laviov, Russia Touay, }uly 2S, 2u12
Assau goveinment is oveithiown by foice, uiging that uialogue anu piagmatism aie
the only means to uefuse the situation:
Tbe incumbent Syrion outborities os well os tbe so- colleJ ormeJ opposition must
finJ strenqtb to orqonize tbe tolks onJ finJ o mutuolly occeptoble compromise for tbe
country´s future. We believe tbot tbe followinq sboulJ be tbe course of oction: boltinq
tbe violence, conJuctinq neqotiotions, seorcbinq for o solution, loyinq Jown o
constitutionol bosis for tbe future society, onJ only tben introJucinq structurol
cbonqes, not vice verso. Boinq tbinqs tbe otber woy orounJ woulJ only couse cboos.
221

Russia's stance ieflects a giowing global consensus of inuepenuent jouinalists
anu geopolitical analysts who have meticulously anu objectively uocumenteu the
piemeuitateu uestabilization of Syiia by Westein anu uulf States. Russia's
ambassauoi to the 0N, vitaly Chuikin, who uiges spectatois not be "uupeu by
Westein humanitaiian ihetoiic on Syiia," ieflects on the unueilying aggiession anu
ueceptive natuie of the uubious "Fiienus of Syiia" gioup anu theii stance:
Tbey bove been workinq witb tbe so-colleJ ´IrienJs of Syrio´. ln foct, tbis is o qroup
of countries wbo ore enemies of tbe Syrion qovernment, l woulJ not coll tbem tbe
enemies of tbe Syrion people, but certoinly tbose wbo wont to topple tbe Syrion
qovernment, JisreqorJinq tbe consequences wbicb ore extremely troqic; sucb o policy
inevitobly entoils [troqeJy] becouse tbe qovernment of PresiJent AssoJ is not simply
one inJiviJuol or o qroup of inJiviJuols. Tbey represent o certoin seqment of tbe Syrion
populotion, o certoin power structure, wbicb bos existeJ tbere for JecoJes. To breok it
woulJ couse, onJ is cousinq, consiJeroble trouble onJ blooJsbeJ. To reform it tbrouqb
Jioloque, tbis woulJ be o mucb more reosonoble line of oction onJ tbis is wbot Russio
bos been oJvocotinq.
222
Apait fiom the moial impeiative of iejecting institutionalizeu suppoit foi
teiioiism, Russia has stiategic inteiests in maintaining theii poit iights to Noscow's
only Neuiteiianean naval poit in Taitus, the last iemaining Russian militaiy base
outsiue the foimei Soviet 0nion. The naval base at Taitus has been upgiaueu anu
ueclaieu a peimanent iegional base foi Russia's nucleai-capable waiships. Westein
capitals have attempteu to spaik contioveisy ovei Russia ueliveiing an estimateu
$Suu million in aii uefense systems, ieconuitioneu helicopteis, anu fightei jets to
Syiia. Accusations of Noscow fueling bloousheu, anu the imposition of tiaue
embaigos on one of Noscow's vessels ueliveiing Ni-2S helicopteis, have uiiven
Russia anu the 0niteu States fuithei apait uiplomatically, uespite the fact that
contiacts foi Russian uefense shipments to Syiia weie signeu between 2uu7 anu
2uu8.
22S
In late }uly, Noscow agieeu to uelay the ueliveiy of iefuibisheu helicopteis,
while a Russian naval flotilla enteieu the eastein Neuiteiianean, consisting of 1u
Russian waiships anu 1u escoit vessels leu by the Aumiial Chabanenko anti-
221 Putin: Non-stop civil wai if Assau ousteu, Russia Touay, }uly 2S, 2u12
222 'Bon't be uupeu by Westein humanitaiian ihetoiic on Syiia' - Russia's 0N ambassauoi, Russia Touay, }uly
2u, 2u12
22S Russia Will Belay Beliveiy of Belicopteis to Syiia, The Noscow Times, }uly 2u, 2u12
submaiine uestioyei, incluuing lanuing ships with maiines on boaiu.
224
In Nay 2u11,
Russia's Beputy Piime Ninistei Bmitiy Rogozin waineu that, "NAT0 is planning a
militaiy campaign against Syiia to help oveithiow the iegime of Piesiuent Bashai al-
Assau with a long-ieaching goal of piepaiing a beachheau foi an attack on Iian." Be
fuithei emphasizeu that the NAT0 militaiy alliance aims to inteifeie only with those
states "whose views uo not coinciue with those of the West." Russia's Aumiial
Alexanuei Feuosenkov has saiu Noscow's waiships in the Neuiteiianean aie
piepaiing foi naval uiills scheuuleu foi Septembei 2u12, anu aie not caiiying out
any militaiy tasks in Syiia.
22S

Bespite a long histoiy of mutual uistiust between Russia anu China, both nations
have a common inteiest in giowing theii economic sectois anu iesisting Ameiican
militaiy expansion in theii spheies of influence. Following the announcement that
the 0niteu States plans to shift 6u peicent of its waiships to the Asia-Pacific, Noscow
announceu that it woulu boost militaiy coopeiation with Beijing, incluuing holuing
moie joint exeicises, giving way to Sino-Russian naval exeicises in the Yellow Sea
helu uuiing Apiil 2u12.
226
Foieign Ninistei Laviov has emphasizeu the stiong
opposition of both Noscow anu Beijing against the effoits of Washington anu NAT0
to expanu theii militaiy alliances by ueploying missile uefense systems in vaiious
paits of the woilu. Russia anu China have spoken out against expansionism of the
Westein militaiy bloc anu the ueployment of missile uefense systems in Eastein
Euiope. Noscow feels thieateneu by the continueu eastein expansion of NAT0,
potentially into foimei Soviet states that have long been vieweu as Russia's
tiauitional spheie of influence, such as 0kiaine anu ueoigia. Elsewheie, Beijing is
conceineu with Ameiican militaiy expansion into the Asia-Pacific, the continueu
aims sales to Taiwan, anu the backing of the Philippines in the ongoing teiiitoiial
uispute in the South China Sea. Russia anu China intenu to continue stiengthening
theii paitneiship by uefenuing each othei's mutual soveieignty anu teiiitoiial
integiity, anu by incieasing bilateial tiaue to $1uu billion by 2u1S. Foieign Ninistei
Laviov unueilines the stiong uisappioval of both Noscow anu Beijing with Ameiican
hegemony anu militaiy encioachment:
Russio onJ Cbino support tbe estoblisbment of o multipolor moJel of internotionol
relotions, tbe formotion of o foirer onJ Jemocrotic politicol onJ economic system, tbe
strenqtbeninq of tbe 0N centrol coorJinotinq role in solvinq pressinq issues on tbe
internotionol oqenJo.
227
0nsuipiisingly, the leaueis of Russia anu China aie staunchly opposeu to the use
of militaiy foice against Iian, as Washington anu Tel Aviv continue theii asseitions to
"keep all options open" with iegaiu to halting the uevelopment of Tehian's nucleai
224 Russian flotilla heaueu foi Syiia enteis Neuiteiianean, Yahoo News, }uly 24, 2u12
22S Russian Waiships in Neuiteiianean 'not Engageu in Syiia Tasks, RiaNovosti, }uly 26, 2u12
226 Putin says to push militaiy ties with China, Reuteis, }une u6, 2u12
227 Russia, China Conuemn West's Nissile Shielu Piogiam, FARS, }une u6, 2u12
piogiam.
228
Since ietuining to office, Piesiuent Putin has begun implementing plans
to cieate a Russian-uominateu Euiasian economic anu militaiy bloc, beginning with
the foimation of a bilateial 0nion State between Russia anu Belaius, vowing to
countei all foieign attempts to affect the inteinal affaiis of that union, incluuing
limitation anu sanctions. 0pon taking office, Piesiuent Putin emphasizeu the neeu
foi Noscow to fuithei uevelop its nucleai aisenal, along with Russia's own aii anu
space uefenses, oiueiing that the uevelopment of mouein weapons be incieaseu by
7S-8S pei cent foi the nucleai foices anu to 7u pei cent foi space anu aii uefense by
2u2u, stating:
We ore not qoinq to enter tbe orms roce, but no one sboulJ bove ony Joubts in tbe
reliobility onJ effectiveness of our nucleor potentiol, os well os tbe meons of oir onJ
spoce Jefense. Tbe nucleor weopons remoin tbe most importont quorontee of Russio´s
sovereiqnty onJ territoriol inteqrity, onJ ploy o key role in mointoininq tbe reqionol
bolonce onJ stobility.
229
In ieaction to Washington anu NAT0's fiim aveision to coopeiating with Noscow
on the contioveisial missile uefense shielu in Eastein Euiope, Russia has begun
ueveloping its offensive weapons capability by bolsteiing its inteicontinental
ballistic missile system. vlauimii Kozin, a leauing ieseaichei at the Russian Stiategic
Reseaich Institute, elaboiateu on the thieat poseu by NAT0's expansion to the
boiueis of Russian teiiitoiy:
Tbe new missile project is o step in tbe riqbt Jirection ot o time wben tbe 0niteJ
Stotes is enqoqeJ in lorqe-scole moJernizotion of its stroteqic onJ tocticol nucleor
potentiols, onJ omiJ tbe continuinq Jeployment of tbe Furopeon onJ qlobol missile
Jefense systems. Sucb o combinotion corries even more tbreots for Russio onJ its ollies
onJ frienJs, tbon o seporotely operotinq missile sbielJ. Wosbinqton, os NAT0´s Hoy
summit JemonstroteJ, continues to neqlect tbe Russion leoJersbip´s concerns obout tbe
obsolutely unjustifieJ ossembly of o multi-loyereJ missile Jefense structure neor tbe
Russion borJers, os well os Russio´s proposols to form o less provocotive, but more
efficient missile Jefense structure.
2Su
Piesiuent 0bama has suppoiteu the constiuction of an anti-ballistic missile
system in Eastein Euiope to safeguaiu against a possible stiike fiom Iian. Initially,
Noscow piesseu NAT0 officials foi a guaiantee that this ANB system woulu not be
useu to taiget Russia, something that officials weie unable to legally guaiantee.
2S1
In
iesponse, foimei Russian Piesiuent Bmitiy Neuveuev waineu, "Russia will ueploy
mouein offensive weapons systems in the west anu south of the countiy, theieby
ensuiing its ability to take out any pait of the 0S missile uefense system in Euiope."
228 China, Russia, Say No To Wai With Iian, Foibes, }une u6, 2u12
229 Putin pushes nucleai, space uefense iefoim, Russia Touay, }uly 26, 2u12
2Su New Russia weapons to countei NAT0 stiategic fist - expeit, Russia Touay, Nay 24, 2u12
2S1 NAT0 Cannot Pioviue Russia with Nissile uuaiantees, Says Beputy Secietaiy ueneial, Estonian Public Bioaucasting, Nay
29, 2u12
Neuveuev also hinteu at Noscow's withuiawal fiom the Stiategic Aims Reuuction
Tieaty signeu in 2u1u, an initiative to mutually ieuuce nucleai stockpiles in the
0niteu States anu Russia. The conflict in Syiia is one of many flashpoints foi
incieaseu tension anu possible militaiy exchange between Noscow anu Washington.
While the auministiations in Noscow anu Beijing aie not without theii own
shoitcomings, theii stance thioughout the Syiian conflict iepiesents the incieaseu
institutional influence of emeiging nations anu theii impact on inteinational affaiis.
As membeis of the Shanghai Coopeiation 0iganization focus on incieasing tiaue,
builuing infiastiuctuie, anu expanuing mutually beneficial, peaceful economic
uevelopment, Piesiuent Putin's claims that the 0niteu States suffeis fiom an "illusion
of invulneiability," offeis valuable insight into the shape of things to come.
2S2
{Auqust 12
tb
, 2012)
2S2 Ameiica suffeis fiom 'illusion of invulneiability' - Putin, Russia Touay, Naich u2, 2u12
Conclusion
"People wbo bove been JeboseJ for so lonq tbot tbey bove become like onimols, or
worse, obsolutely will not JemonJ liberty. Tbey miqbt ovenqe tbemselves on tbe Jespot,
but tbis will be only to toke revenqe on bis person, not to qet riJ of Jespotism. Tbis will
not benefit tbe people, for it will be excbonqinq one Jiseose for onotber, like
substitutinq o beoJocbe for o stomocb ocbe."
Abd al-Rabman al-Kawakibi
Syrion Pbilosopber & Proponent of Pon-lslomic Arob 0nity
The infinite complexities of the tioubles facing Bashai al-Assau's Syiia aie not to
be unueiestimateu. While Bamascus has iesponueu to this campaign of insuigency
much like any goveinment woulu, the lack of iestiaint anu the inuiviuual misconuuct
of membeis of the Syiian militaiy have iegiettably contiibuteu to the loss of life.
Contiaiy to the populai histoiical account of events, the conflict that has iavageu
Syiia is not an inuigenous inteinal uispute, anu it is not a tale of a belligeient uictatoi
bent on "muiueiing his own people." Regaiuless of how this situation is iesolveu, it
must be iemembeieu as an attempt by allieu foieign entities to use uniestiaineu
tactics of subveision anu teiioiism to oveithiow a soveieign nation's goveinment.
While the official casualty iates offeieu by the 0niteu Nations iemain highly
questionable, those innocents who suffeieu untimely ueaths at the expense of this
state-sponsoieu uestabilization campaign must not be foigotten. If any political
tiansition takes place in Syiia, it must be thiough uialogue anu not thiough foice.
Befoie any such tiansition occuis, it is the iesponsibility of the Syiian goveinment to
iestoie oiuei anu safety to the civilian population. As allieu foieign nations convene
togethei to ueciue the fate of Bamascus, it woulu be appeai that the iight of Syiia's
own people to ueciue theii political uestiny has been oveilookeu.
Syiia's people must collectively ueciue the futuie of theii nation, anu the fate of
Bashai al-Assau. As the noithein city of Aleppo becomes the epicentei of insuigency
in the eighteenth month of the conflict, attention must be lent to one of Syiia's most
piominent intellectuals, a man who woulu be most conceineu with the violence
engulfing his biithplace if he weie alive touay. Abu al-Rahman al-Kawakibi was boin
in Aleppo in 1849, anu was a leauing pioponent of seculaiism anu unity thioughout
the Aiab woilu. The nationalistic components of al-Kawakibi's philosophy of unity,
fieeuom, anu socialism contiibuteu to the iueological founuations of Aiab leaueis
such as uamal Abuel Nassei, anu latei to the Syiian Ba'ath paity. Al-Kawakibi spoke
aiuently of his iepugnance foi autociacy, but waineu, "uespotism must be fought not
with violence but, iathei, with giauualism anu gentleness." Bespotism, as he
peiceiveu it, cannot be oveithiow by foice, at iisk of "substituting a heauache foi a
stomach ache." Al-Kawakibi insteau favoieu evolutionaiy anu inciemental change,
anu the tiansfoimation of society at laige thiough euucation.
Al-Kawakibi was tioubleu by what he saw as the uecline of Islamic communities,
but unlike othei thinkeis of his uay, he attiibuteu this tienu not to exteinal foices,
but to ieactionaiy Nuslim uespots. The theoiies of Al-Kawakibi iemain stiikingly
ielevant to the piesent situation, wheie uisunity anu sectaiian violence plague much
of the Islamic woilu. Nuslims anu woishippeis of all backgiounus must take heeu to
avoiu enflaming such social anu ieligious uiffeiences, as these sectaiian uistinctions
have been histoiically exploiteu by colonial anu impeiialist poweis to tuin
communities against each othei. Nuch can be uiawn fiom Al-Kawakibi's assessments
of political uespotism, foi if the seculai Syiian state is shatteieu, the political entity
that ieplaces it may piove be infinitely moie self-seiving anu uespotic. Syiian people
face a uifficult choice anu an unceitain futuie, one that will have enoimous
iamifications both iegionally anu uomestically. If exteinal actois impose
"uemociacy" on the Syiian state, the iesulting political oiuei that emeiges will
unquestionably opeiate as a vassal of those foieign entities that feu the insuigency
anu violence at the expense of innocent lives.
An aiticle publisheu by Ioreiqn Policy in late }uly 2u12 titleu, "Insiue the quiet
effoit to plan foi a post-Assau Syiia," lays baie the methouology being useu by the
0niteu States to establish a client iegime in Bamascus.
2SS
The 0S State Bepaitment,
thiough the "0niteu States Institute of Peace" is woiking uiiectly with Syiian
opposition gioups to foimulate a new Syiian constitution, iefeiieu to as a "tiansition
stiategy uocument." The 0niteu States Institute of Peace is a uiiect functionaiy of the
Ameiican goveinment, with acting membeis of the 0S State Bepaitment, incluuing
Nichael Posnei anu membeis of the 0S Bepaitment of Befense, incluuing }ames
Nillei, seiving on the 0SIP Boaiu of Biiectois. Such aumissions exhibit the absolute
illegitimacy of the so-calleu "Syiian opposition," - a complete contiivance of the 0S
goveinment, anu in no way iepiesentative of the Syiian people. The unpaialleleu
ciiminality of Washington is nowheie moie appaient than in the New York Times´
outiageous aiticle, "0S to Focus on Foicibly Toppling Syiian uoveinment," which is
all but an aumission that inueeu, foieign-backeu teiioiists have faileu, anu that the
iestoiation of oiuei by the Syiian aimy is imminent:
Tbe 0bomo oJministrotion bos for now obonJoneJ efforts for o Jiplomotic
settlement to tbe conflict in Syrio, onJ insteoJ it is increosinq oiJ to tbe rebels onJ
reJoublinq efforts to rolly o coolition of like-minJeJ countries to forcibly brinq Jown
tbe qovernment of PresiJent Bosbor ol-AssoJ, Americon officiols soy. "We´re lookinq ot
tbe controlleJ Jemolition of tbe AssoJ reqime," soiJ AnJrew }. Tobler, o Syrio expert ot
tbe Wosbinqton lnstitute for Neor Fost Policy. "But like ony controlleJ Jemolition,
onytbinq con qo wronq."
2S4
In Syiia, things have gone veiy wiong, anu the ihetoiic being espouseu to justify
the malicious conuuct of Washington's foot soluieis is nothing soit of alaiming.
Peihaps the most uamning example of euitoiial uishonesty comes fiom Eu Busain,
senioi fellow foi Niuule Eastein Stuuies at the 0S Council on Foieign Relations. Bis
August 2u12 aiticle, "Al-Qaeua's Spectei in Syiia," aigues in favoi of al-Qaeua
teiioiists anu theii inclusion in the Fiee Syiian Aimy, in what can be categoiizeu
only as an attempt to pioject cognitive uissonance to his ieaueiship, a state in which
an inuiviuual holus two conflicting iueas simultaneously in a consistent belief
system:
2SS Insiue the quiet effoit to plan foi a post-Assau Syiia, Foieign Policy, }uly 2u, 2u12
2S4 0S to Focus on Foicibly Toppling Syiian uoveinment, The New Yoik Times, }uly 22, 2u12
Tbe Syrion rebels woulJ be immeosurobly weoker toJoy witbout ol-µoeJo in tbeir
ronks. By onJ lorqe, Iree Syrion Army {ISA) bottolions ore tireJ, JiviJeJ, cbootic, onJ
ineffective. Ieelinq obonJoneJ by tbe West, rebel forces ore increosinqly JemorolizeJ
os tbey squore off witb tbe AssoJ reqime´s superior weoponry onJ professionol ormy.
Al-µoeJo fiqbters, bowever, moy belp improve morole. Tbe influx of jiboJis brinqs
Jiscipline, reliqious fervor, bottle experience from lroq, funJinq from Sunni
sympotbizers in tbe 6ulf, onJ most importontly, JeoJly results. ln sbort, tbe ISA neeJs
ol-µoeJo now.
2SS

To aigue in favoi of the same teiioiist entity that was useu to justify ovei a
uecaue of Ameiican piesence in Iiaq, Afghanistan, anu elsewheie, is a wanton
uisplay of hypociisy anu acauemic iiiesponsibility. Cleaily, no nation coulu, in goou
conscience, oi in the inteiest of self-pieseivation, conuone the oveit uestabilization
of Syiia by foieign poweis with uisingenuous motives, using listeu teiioiist
oiganizations to uo so. Busain's commentaiy is a testament to the uespeiate anu
bizaiie illogicality of the 0S position on Syiia, chaiacteiizeu by a willingness to
sponsoi the veiy monsteis against whom Washington has long ciieu foul.
To follow suit, Ioreiqn Policy publisheu an August 2u12 aiticle liteially titleu,
"Two Cheeis foi Syiian Islamists." Authoi uaiy uambill, ueneial Euitoi of the Neo-
Con Niuule East Foium, conceues that the Syiian goveinment "woulu not be in the
tiouble it's in touay weie it not foi the Islamists," ievealing what the allieu foieign
poweis anu theii meuia houses have attempteu but faileu at obfuscating - that the
violence in Syiia is the woik of sectaiian extiemists, not "pio-uemociacy activists."
The lattei's existence was amplifieu by the Westein meuia specifically to pioviue
covei anu legitimacy foi the violence anu subveision of the foimei. uambill
continues his "two cheeis" foi teiioiism in peihaps the most peiveise statement
founu to-uate in the Westein piess on the subject:
lslomists -- mony of tbem borJeneJ by yeors of fiqbtinq 0.S. forces in lroq -- ore
simply more effective fiqbters tbon tbeir seculor counterports. AssoJ bos boJ
extroorJinory Jifficulty counterinq toctics perfecteJ by bis former jiboJist ollies,
porticulorly suiciJe bombinqs onJ rooJsiJe bombs.
2S6
uambill is effusively piaising men who have killeu his own nation's solueis,
aumiiing theii piowess on the battlefielu thiough theii use of inuisciiminate
teiioiist tactics, which have killeu anu maimeu tens of thousanus of civilians acioss
the Aiab Woilu. uambill uisingenuously claims that Washington can uo "little about"
what he calls the "political ascenuancy" of these sectaiian extiemists, poitiaying the
iise of violence acioss the Levant anu the miiaculous iesuiiection of the Nuslim
Biotheihoou acioss the Aiab Woilu as coinciuentally aligneu to Ameiican inteiests:
So lonq os Syrion jiboJis ore committeJ to fiqbtinq lron onJ its Arob proxies, we
sboulJ quietly root for tbem -- wbile keepinq our Jistonce from o conflict tbot is qoinq
to qet very uqly before tbe smoke cleors. Tbere will be plenty of time to tome tbe beost
ofter lron´s reqionol beqemonic ombitions bove qone Jown in flomes.
2SS Al-Qaeua's Spectei in Syiia, The Council on Foieign Relations, August u6, 2u12
2S6 Two Cheeis foi Syiian Islamists, Foieign Policy, August 2S, 2u12
It must be iemembeieu that the teiioiists uambill is "cheeiing" foi have
uestioyeu peaceful communities, committeu iacially anu ieligiously motivateu
violence anu ensnaieu millions of Westein tioops foi ovei a uecaue in the
oxymoionic anu fictitious "Wai on Teiioi," killing innumeiable innocents. As public
awaieness giows of Westein suppoit foi these veiy teiioiists, it woulu be almost
inconceivable that theie woulu not be a piofounu, peihaps even violent backlash
against people like uambill anu the establishment he iepiesents.
Reuters´s uuplicitously titleu August 2u12 iepoit, "Libyan fieeuom fighteis join
with Syiian iebels," confiims what inuepenuent geopolitical analysts anu alteinative
news souices have iepoiteu foi months, that membeis of the Libyan Islamic Fighting
uioup (LIFu) aie stationeu in Syiia, anu leauing offensives against the Syiian
goveinment.
2S7
The Libyan Islamic Fighting uioup is uesignateu as an al-Qaeua
affiliate by the 0niteu Nations puisuant to iesolutions 1267 (1999) anu 1989
(2u11), noting seveial piominent LIFu teiioiists occupying the highest echelons of
al-Qaeua's commanu stiuctuie, in auuition to being listeu by both the 0S State
Bepaitment anu the 0K Bome 0ffice as a foieign teiioiist oiganization anu a
piosciibeu teiioiist oiganization iespectively.
2S8
In uiiect violation of both Ameiican
anu Biitish anti-teiioiism legislation, paiticulaily piovisions iegaiuing pioviuing
mateiial suppoit foi listeu oi piosciibeu teiioiist oiganizations, the 0niteu Kinguom
announceu in August 2u12 that it will pioviue aimeu militants, incluuing listeu
teiioi oiganizations, with a £S million tianche of what it calls "non-lethal piactical
assistance." This means that the 0niteu States, the 0niteu Kinguom, the Noith
Atlantic Tieaty 0iganization, with Tuikey, Sauui Aiabia, anu Qatai aie knowingly anu
willfully funuing uesignateu affiliates of al-Qaeua contiaiy not only to 0S anu Biitish
anti-teiioi legislation, but contiaiy to 0N iesolutions as well.
2S9
The 0S State Bepaitment's own website featuies a list of uesignateu foieign
teiioiist oiganizations (FT0) upon which both al-Qaeua (#S7) & the LIFu (#28) aie
cleaily listeu. Towaiu the bottom of the page, the State Bepaitment inuicates the
"Legal Ramifications of |itsj Besignation" as follows:
1. lt is unlowful for o person in tbe 0niteJ Stotes or subject to tbe jurisJiction of tbe
0niteJ Stotes to knowinqly proviJe "moteriol support or resources" to o JesiqnoteJ
IT0. {Tbe term "moteriol support or resources" is JefineJ in 18 0.S.C. § 2SS9A{b){1) os
" ony property, tonqible or intonqible, or service, incluJinq currency or monetory
instruments or finonciol securities, finonciol services, loJqinq, troininq, expert oJvice
or ossistonce, sofebouses, folse Jocumentotion or iJentificotion, communicotions
equipment, focilities, weopons, letbol substonces, explosives, personnel {1 or more
inJiviJuols wbo moybe or incluJe oneself), onJ tronsportotion, except meJicine or
reliqious moteriols." 18 0.S.C. § 2SS9A{b){2) proviJes tbot for tbese purposes "tbe term
´troininq´ meons instruction or teocbinq JesiqneJ to import o specific skill, os opposeJ
2S7 Libyan fieeuom fighteis join with Syiian iebels, Reuteis, August 18, 2u12
2S8 QE.L.11.u1. LIBYAN ISLANIC FIuBTINu uR00P, 0niteu Nations, August 2S, 2u1u
2S9 Biitain to give £S million to Syiia iebels, Times of Inuia, August 1u, 2u12
to qenerol knowleJqe." 18 0.S.C. § 2SS9A{b){S) furtber proviJes tbot for tbese purposes
tbe term ´expert oJvice or ossistonce´ meons oJvice or ossistonce JeriveJ from
scientific, tecbnicol or otber speciolizeJ knowleJqe.´´
2. Representotives onJ members of o JesiqnoteJ IT0, if tbey ore oliens, ore
inoJmissible to onJ, in certoin circumstonces, removoble from tbe 0niteJ Stotes {see 8
0.S.C. §§ 1182 {o){S){B){i){lv)-{v), 1227 {o){1){A)).
S. Any 0.S. finonciol institution tbot becomes owore tbot it bos possession of or
control over funJs in wbicb o JesiqnoteJ IT0 or its oqent bos on interest must retoin
possession of or control over tbe funJs onJ report tbe funJs to tbe 0ffice of Ioreiqn
Assets Control of tbe 0.S. Beportment of tbe Treosury.
24u
The misconuuct anu ciiminality of both the 0niteu States anu the 0niteu Kinguom
with iespect to aiuing anu abetting teiioiist oiganizations in Syiia anu Libya
constitute high ciimes anu tieason. 0nuei the anti-teiioiism legislation in place in
both nations, the following uemanus can be substantiateu:
- The immeuiate iesignation anu tiial of United States Secretary of State
Hillary Rodbam Clinton unuei the 0niteu States' 0SC § 2SS9A & 2SS9B - Pioviuing
mateiial suppoit oi iesouices to uesignateu foieign teiioiist oiganizations.
- The immeuiate iesignation anu tiial of United States Ambassador to tbe
United Nations Susan Rice unuei the 0niteu States' 0SC § 2SS9A & 2SS9B -
Pioviuing mateiial suppoit oi iesouices to uesignateu foieign teiioiist
oiganizations.
- The immeuiate iesignation anu tiial of Britisb Foreign Secretary and First
Secretary of State William Hague unuei the 0niteu Kinguom's Anti-teiioiism,
Ciime anu Secuiity Act of 2uu1.
The geneiation pieceuing Billaiy Clinton's, those of Woilu Wai II, swoie "nevei
again" to the tiageuy of that global conflict. They also swoie "nevei again" to the lies
anu manipulations that maneuveieu millions of people acioss the globe into ueauly
conflict with one anothei. Billaiy Clinton's fabiications anu attempts to foist yet
anothei wai constiucteu upon falsehoous betiays that piomise, anu thus jeopaiuizes
the veiy founuation anu piinciples upon which civilization stanus. Billaiy Clinton, to
continue in hei capacity, like the entiie Bush Auministiation befoie hei,
compiomises anu foievei stains the cieuibility anu integiity of the 0niteu States. Not
only has the 0bama auministiation, with Billaiy Clinton as Secietaiy of State anu
Susan Rice as Ambassauoi to the 0niteu Nations, inheiiteu anu peipetuateu this
violent conspiiacy against the Syiian people, it has inheiiteu anu peipetuateu the
uishonoi anu stiaining of Ameiica's iemaining integiity anu global goou will. Foi
Ameiica's economy which cannot shouluei anothei militaiy auventuie, foi Ameiica's
honoi which cannot finu space to fit anothei scai, Billaiy Clinton anu Susan Rice
must iesign anu those in Congiess anu thioughout inuustiy must withuiaw suppoit
foi those squanueiing the last of Ameiica's once vast potential in puisuit of
militaiistic hegemony.
While the State Bepaitment's "Legal Ramifications of |itsj Besignation" cleaily
piohibits pioviuing "safehouses" to uesignateu foieign teiioiist oiganizations,
24u Foieign Teiioiist 0iganizations, 0.S. Bepaitment of State, }anuaiy 27, 2u12
Ameiican Neo-Conseivatives have concuiiently "calleu on" 0S Piesiuent Baiack
0bama to assist in the establishment of "safe zones" insiue of Syiia in a }uly 2u12
lettei publisheu by the "Foieign Policy Initiative" (FPI) anu the "Founuation foi the
Befense of Bemociacies" (FBB). The lettei, publisheu in Ioreiqn Policy´s aiticle
"Conseivatives call on 0bama to establish 'safe zones' in Syiia," was signeu by co-
conspiiatois in the invasion of Iiaq incluuing Elliott Abiams, Kail Rove, anu Paul
Biemei, along with auvisois to Nitt Romney, incluuing Eiic Auelman anu Robeit
Kagan.
241
Both institutions aie coipoiate, founuation, anu goveinment-funueu
cleaiinghouses, extensions of laigei think tanks like the Ameiican Enteipiise
Institute, iesponsible foi manufactuiing consensus behinu aggiessive agenuas that
have little to no suppoit within the geneial public. Peihaps the most uistuibing
aspect of the open lettei is its calls foi a no-fly zone ovei Syiia:
We urqe you to toke immeJiote steps, in close onJ continuinq consultotion witb tbe
Conqress, to work witb reqionol portners to estoblisb oir-potrolleJ "sofe zones"
coverinq olreoJy liberoteJ oreos witbin Syrio, usinq militory power not only to protect
tbese zones from furtber oqqression by tbe AssoJ reqime´s militory onJ irrequlor
forces, but olso to neutrolize tbe tbreot poseJ by tbe Syrion Jictotorsbip´s cbemicol onJ
bioloqicol weopons.
Reuters´s August 2u12 aiticle, "Secuiing Syiia chemical weapons may take tens of
thousanus of tioops," illustiates the fiightening possibility of uiiect militaiy
inteivention in Syiia:
Tbe 0niteJ Stotes onJ its ollies ore Jiscussinq o worst-cose scenorio tbot coulJ
require tens of tbousonJs of qrounJ troops to qo into Syrio to secure cbemicol onJ
bioloqicol weopons sites followinq tbe foll of PresiJent Bosbor ol-AssoJ´s qovernment,
occorJinq to 0.S. onJ Jiplomotic officiols.
Two Jiplomotic sources, olso speokinq on conJition of ononymity, soiJ os mony os
S0,000 or 60,000 qrounJ forces moy be neeJeJ if officiols´ worst feors ore reolizeJ, plus
oJJitionol support forces. Fven o force of 60,000 troops, bowever, woulJ not be lorqe
enouqb for peocekeepinq onJ woulJ only be tbe omount requireJ to secure tbe
weopons sites - Jespite some of tbe oppeoronces of o lroq-style occupotion force, tbe
Jiplomotic sources coutioneJ.
242
Anonymous 0S officials citeu by the Woll Street }ournol iepoiteu that the Syiian
goveinment is taking chemical weapons out of stoiage foi possible use "against anti-
iegime iebels oi civilians, possibly in an ethnic cleansing campaign."
24S
Bespite
claiming to possess this infoimation, the 0S officials iefuseu to uisclose the location
these weapons weie being moveu to, oi the specific weapons, stating only "they aie
most woiiieu about Syiia's stockpiles of saiin gas." The Syiian goveinment has
withstoou ovei a yeai of political, economic, anu uiplomatic attacks, both in the foim
241 Conseivatives call on 0bama to establish 'safe zones' in Syiia, Foieign Policy, }uly 24, 2u12
242 Secuiing Syiia chemical weapons may take tens of thousanus of tioops, Reuteis, August 17,
2u12
24S Annan 'appalleu' by iepoiteu killings, 0PI, }uly 1S, 2u12
of meuia uisinfoimation anu militaiy subveision. The logical question one might ask
woulu be why the Syiian goveinment woulu use chemical weapons, pioviuing the
West the pietext neeueu to maneuvei aiounu the obstiuctions poseu by the lack of
consensus in the 0N Secuiity Council. The answei is simple, the Syiian goveinment
is not ponueiing the use of chemical weapons - allieu foieign poweis anu theii
teiioiist pioxies aie. Washington has long talkeu of "tipping the balance" of the
conflict to theii favoi, anu it appeais highly plausible that the thieat of chemical
weapons anu theii use may be useu to justify foicibly toppling Bamascus.
Fiom the stait of the conflict in Syiia, the possibility of open foieign militaiy
inteivention has loomeu uncomfoitably ovei the seiies of uiplomatic measuies taken
in an attempt to uiffuse the situation - those effoits have now ueteiioiateu. uiven the
unpieuictability of the Syiian situation, it is uifficult to foiesee any possible
outcomes to the ongoing ciisis, though the possibility of the following situations
coming to pass, anu theii iamifications, must be consiueieu:
- Assad attempts to quell tbe insurgency by force, ieflecting the conuuct of
nations such as Algeiia, who have successfully suppiesseu insuigents affiliateu with
AQIN. This couise of action may woik to fuithei enflame the situation if outsiue
foices continue to inciease theii use of foieign meicenaiies anu pioviue iebel
fighteis with moie uangeious aimaments, incluuing chemical oi biological weapons.
If Syiian secuiity foices aie unable to iestoie oiuei anu ciush the insuigency, any
authentic oi manufactuieu atiocity oi incuision into Tuikish teiiitoiy may be
enough to tip the scale in favoi of open militaiy inteivention (with oi without the
appioval of the 0NSC). If that occuis, the Tuikish-Syiian boiuei woulu see open
exchanges of fiie, with Ankaia attempting to captuie teiiitoiy in noithein Syiia. Iian
woulu likely offei militaiy suppoit to Assau, while the non-inteiventionist policies of
Russia anu China make theii actions moie uifficult to foiesee. Fiom that point, the
potential foi a wiuei iegional conflict is plausible.
- Assad succeeds in quelling tbe insurgency by force, causing iebel militants
to uispeise, suiienuei anu take iefuge in iuial aieas anu neighboiing countiies.
Syiian secuiity foices woulu inciease theii opeiations anu attempt to maintain oiuei
in population centeis. The militaiy woulu secuie tense aieas anu some foim of
noimality woulu iesume, although bombings, boiuei incuisions anu othei attacks
coulu peisist on a smallei scale. Assau woulu step up inteinal secuiity, anu be
uemonizeu as an inteinational paiiah. Syiia woulu continue suffeiing unuei heavy
economic sanctions. If Assau continues to holu onto powei anu fails to uelivei
meaningful iefoims anu political pluialism, inteinal uissent coulu again become
pioblematic, potentially shifting moueiates to embiace factions of the opposition.
Political tuimoil woulu ensue, but the secuiity situation coulu be stabilizeu if
insuigent activity is successfully subuueu.
- Assad's government collapses by force, eithei fiom being oveitaken by iebel
foices oi as a iesult of foieign militaiy inteivention. If insuigents pusheu foiwaiu
with theii campaign anu weie able to captuie teiiitoiy anu maintain an uppei hanu,
aimeu gangs coulu peisecute Assau loyalists, Alawites, Shi'as, anu othei ieligious
minoiities such as Chiistians anu Biuze, ieflecting the conuuct of Libyan LIFu
fighteis following the fall of uauuafi. Chemical weapons may be useu by the iebels to
inciiminate Assau anu justify inteivention, oi legitimately useu by Assau to iepel
foieign militaiy foices enteiing the countiy en mosse. The iesulting inteiim
goveinment woulu stiuggle to maintain the secuiity situation anu likely be unable to
implement coheient policy amiu uivisions in leaueiship. Political tuimoil woulu
ensue, anu aimeu gangs coulu continue theii campaign, amiu incieasing sectaiian
tensions. The long-teim iamifications of this scenaiio aie uifficult to imagine, but it
woulu likely be chaiacteiizeu by volatility anu incieuible human suffeiing if the
situation becomes an extenueu conflict.
The global hegemony of Wall Stieet anu Lonuon has been built behinu a facaue of
"human iights," "fieeuom," anu "uemociacy." As contempoiaiy Westein civilization is
chaiacteiizeu by the eiosion of these veiy piinciples, theii use foi uisguising
impeiialism, coipoiate monopolization, anu militaiy aggiession abioau have become
oveit anu incieasingly ineffective. While Washington blames Noscow anu Beijing foi
"holuing up piogiess" in the West's campaign of piemeuitateu uestabilization in
Syiia, it is moie likely that the West's own loss of legitimacy is the tiue ieason it has
not successfully convinceu iepiesentatives of laige peicentages of the global
population to acquiesce to its self-seiving, fabiicateu, anu untenable agenua. Shoulu
the 0niteu States fail in its attempts to oveithiow the goveinment of Syiia, anu quite
likely even if it uoes manage to succeeu, the West's cieuibility anu that of its
institutions have ueteiioiateu so significantly, that futuie gambits will be even moie
uifficult to execute.
As the West's economy anu geopolitical powei ciumbles anu its ieach becomes
less subtle anu moie auveisaiial, shaieholueis will seek moie secuie investments:
financial, political, anu tactical. Naintaining an empiie ielies on an immense global
infiastiuctuie that the West still possesses, one that is meeting competition fiom
both iival hegemonies anu inuiviuual nations. Empiies aie also built on
psychological factois, such as faith in one's institutions anu feai of one's militaiy
piowess. The West has been incieasingly falteiing in all iespects in a woilu wheie
these concepts aie becoming incieasingly challengeu by shifting social, economic,
anu technological paiauigms. What the West shoulu be uoing is positioning itself foi
this changing woilu insteau of clinging to a ciumbling empiie, sciambling to builu a
global paiauigm ienueieu antiquateu long befoie it has even been implementeu.
Boycotting the coipoiate-financiei inteiests behinu this attempt at establishing
inclusive hegemony will acceleiate anu ensuie its failuie. Insteau, cieating genuine
institutions on a local anu national level foi anu by the people will ensuie that we aie
not left in uisaiiay once these coiiupt inteinational institutions aie ienueieu
obsolete.
As uifficult as it might be foi some to believe, Syiia's pioblem is not violence,
aimeu insuiiection, oi political upheaval. Neithei is it economic oi social. These aie
but symptoms, many puiposefully inuuceu fiom abioau, of Syiia's ieal pioblem, anu
theiefoie any solution aimeu at tieating only these symptoms will pioviue meiely
the most supeificial anu tempoiaiy ielief. Nany geopolitical analysts know this, anu
yet champion the immeuiate tieatment of these symptoms, paiticulaily the enu of
violence, which woulu inueeu neutialize the situation. 0ltimately, howevei, this fails
if the ioot of the pioblem is not also exposeu anu a solution is not foimulateu anu
appiopiiately piomoteu. Syiia's pioblem is not the "Fiee Syiian Aimy" oi the "Syiian
National Council," noi is it the myiiau of teiioiist oiganizations opeiating unuei this
umbiella. Insteau, it is the coipoiate-financiei uiiven foieign inteiests that cieateu,
funu, anu aim these gioups, tactically anu politically peipetuating theii activities.
Syiia's pioblem is that it has attiacteu the attention of Wall Stieet anu Lonuon anu
founu itself in the miuule of theii geopolitical aspiiations foi global hegemony.
Analysts believe that unueimining Westein ambitions foi iegime change in Syiia
by immeuiately coming to a negotiateu agieement with Syiia's so-calleu "opposition"
shoulu take piioiity. Even by meiely attempting to uo this with some uegiee of
cieuibility, it may affoiu Syiia the time neeueu to ietiench against foieign
uestabilization - even if a settlement ultimately fails. In the case of Syiia, so much
time has been investeu in ieaching a negotiateu agieement, that many have lost sight
of the fact that the West anu its uulf allies aie cieating this violence in the fiist place,
anu that theii pioxy "opposition" movement has iejecteu any anu all ieasonable
teims of negotiateu agieements specifically to avoiu this iepiieve in uestabilization.
By bieaking momentum, the West feais it may be unable to iecieate this subveision
in the neai futuie, shoulu a meaningful ceasefiie be establisheu. Beyonu this goal foi
tempoiaiy iepiieve, lie solutions aimeu ueepei anu bioauei, at the veiy base of the
allieu poweis uiiving this conflict, anu similai campaigns of violence anu political
uestabilization woiluwiue. Iuentifying anu exposing the compiomiseu inteiests
uiiving the goveinments of NAT0 anu its meicenaiy pioxies, institutions, Nu0s, anu
meuia - oiganizations such as Eumon Riqbts Wotcb, Amnesty lnternotionol, the
Inteinational Ciiminal Couit, anu even the 0niteu Nations itself to a gieat extent - is
the fiist step in tiuly solving the pioblems facing Syiia anu othei nations.
Exposing these inteiests as the main peipetiatois of Syiia's piemeuitateu
campaign of violence anu uestabilization is an absolute necessity in any attempt to
unueimine the legitimacy of the West's fabiicateu uominant naiiative. Exteinal
foices must be helu accountable foi engaging in activities that have biought the
Syiian ciisis to this uismal stage. Consiueiing the level of subveision anu ueceit
uemonstiateu by foieign poweis opeiating in Syiia, Bashai al-Assau's ambitions to
ciush insuigent fighteis by foice may well be waiianteu. All effoits must be maue to
tiansition the Syiian people into a climate of noimality, incluuing the iemoval of
economic sanctions. At this ciucial stage, the Syiian goveinment shoulu exeicise as
much iestiaint as possible to ensuie the safety of civilians. 0ntil the Syiian
goveinment iestoies oiuei anu pioviues total secuiity to its people, no viable
political tiansitions can be agieeu upon. The goveinment of Bashai al-Assau must
continue to make tangible iefoims that legitimize uissent anu piomote expiession
while inuiviuuals within the "Fiee Syiian Aimy" must lay uown theii aims, lest they
be uealt with by foice. The implications of both foieign militaiy inteivention anu
iegime change in Syiia holu unacceptable consequences foi the Syiian people anu
the entiie iegion. Even if inteinal actois agiee upon a solution, it will take yeais foi
the people of Syiia to iecovei fiom this conflict. If the majoiity of the Syiian people
uesiie a change in leaueiship, the woilu must iespect theii aspiiations. Bowevei,
such a uecision can only be ieacheu once the uomestic secuiity situation has
tiansitioneu to one of oiuei. Those inuiviuuals who value stability founueu on the
pillais of peace, compiomise anu conflict aveision must stanu with the Syiian people
anu help steei them out of these uaik times.
{Auq. 24
tb
, 2012)