Expert Explains Consequences of Washington Arming Syrian Rebels

© REUTERS / Alaa Al-FaqirA Free Syrian Army fighter carries his weapon as he stands on a damaged building, in the east of the rebel-held town of Dael, in Deraa Governorate, Syria January 3, 2017.
A Free Syrian Army fighter carries his weapon as he stands on a damaged building, in the east of the rebel-held town of Dael, in Deraa Governorate, Syria January 3, 2017. - Sputnik International
The British Government has allocated hundreds of thousands of pounds to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. This is what Peter Hitchens, the Sunday Mail’s journalist, revealed in his Twitter on Sunday. Hitchens raised questions about the group's independence, given that the organization defines itself as not affiliated to any political body.

Meanwhile, the US military gear meant for US-backed Syrian rebels has ended up in Al-Qaeda’s hands. Commander Abu Zayd who brokered the deal admitted to Fox News that he gave five pickup trucks and ammunition to the terrorist group. Radio Sputnik discussed both issues with Sarah Abed — Independent journalist and political commentator.

Sputnik: The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights describes itself as an impartial organization and Western media outlets often quote it as a reliable source of information. What are your thoughts regarding the credibility of this organization and its purported impartiality?

Sarah Abed: It’s not much of an organization. It’s a one-man show starring Rami Abdulrahman, whose real name is Osama Suleiman. And he’s a three-term convicted felon from Syria. He actually paid to be smuggled out of Syria in the year 2000 and he’s been living in exile in Coventry since then. He is a staunch anti-Syrian government opposition member and he started SOHR in 2006 and he’s been spreading propaganda since. What he does is he relies on secondhand information from his terrorist-affiliated sources and some of them happen to be his childhood friends. Then he passes this information on as if it’s fact, when it’s actually very biased and it lacks credibility. So basically he went from being a convicted felon to a “human rights activist,” to what many now believe to be a British intelligence agent. And he’s been accused of treachery by all sides of the conflict.

Sputnik: It’s certainly an interesting story. So what’s the British agenda here? Why is the UK taxpayers’ money being spent on this guy?

Sarah Abed: Basically, the reason why they’re funding the media propaganda is to justify their political and military intervention in Syria. So it’s not really surprising that a nation that supports terrorists and funds them would also fund the propaganda behind it. The tax payers are paying for SOHR to basically lie to them and manipulate their thoughts about what’s really going on in the war in Syria. I mean, these lies have fueled an illegal, unethical, carefully planned and calculated, vicious Western insurrection and war on a sovereign nation. Over half a million people have died during the past seven years.

Sputnik: It’s also recently transpired that United States’ weapons meant for Syrian rebels ended up in Al-Qaeda’s hands. What’s your take on the US involvement in the conflict and its far-reaching consequences for the region?

Sarah Abed: Yes, absolutely. So now, regardless of what we want to call these groups, whether they’re referred to as moderate rebels or if we call them by their names, al-Qaeda, al-Nusra, Free Syrian Army, whatever it is, they all serve the same purpose. I just want to make a very important point, which I think has been made many times, but there are no moderate rebels; these are terrorist factions, their purpose is to create instability, they wanted to oust President Assad, they wanted regime change, they wanted to install a Western-approved puppet. So now the US, NATO, GCC – they’ve been arming, assisting, training, funding these terrorist factions throughout the war. And they were actually behind the manufactured uprising that took place in Daraa in 2011. Now if we were to look even further back, the US has been meddling in Syria’s political affairs, their internal political affairs, since the late 1940s. And what their main concern in that area is they want to protect their ally, which is Israel, and they want to keep an eye on who they consider to be their sworn enemy, which is Iran.

Trump did reportedly halt a covert CIA program that was created under the Obama administration back in 2013. And that was costing $1 billion a year and that was to train and assist these “rebels” who are fighting against the Syrian government. In 2015 that program was criticized and so it was scaled back about 20 percent. And then in 2016, weapons were stolen from the Jordanian base that they were using to train the terrorists and they were stolen by agents and then they were sold on the black market.

That’s one of the many times that the weapons fell into the hands of Al-Qaeda. Even if it were to be scaled back, we’re talking about one arm or one faction. What we’ve seen is that they’ve increased support for the Kurdish militia in the north-eastern part of Syria, which is the most oil rich and agriculturally rich area of the whole country. Even if they were to say that we’re going to scale back on supporting these “moderate rebels” or we’re not going to support any of these armed factions any more, the fact that they’re still supporting the Kurdish militias means that they are still doing what they can to prolong the war.

So back to my main message that I want everyone to take note of is we need to stop supporting every single one of these propaganda or armed militias in the country. In the Syrian army, every time they make a lot of progress in liberating an area, you see as if more support comes to these terrorist factions every time. So we just need them to stop all funding.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

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