12:07 GMT04 June 2020
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    The attack on Syria has united the population and increased the nation’s resolve to continue fighting terrorism, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said following the US, British and French airstrike on Damascus. Sputnik discussed the purpose of the attack with Tony Kevin, former Australian diplomat and author of the book Return to Moscow.

    Sputnik: What was the purpose of the attack?

    Tony Kevin: I think the purpose was essentially to solidify the false narrative of Assad's alleged chemical weapons attack on his own people, I think the West was worried with the UN Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) inspectors about to go into Douma to talk to people and to inspect the area, they would produce a verdict of no evidence of a chemical weapons attack there, and I think the West, and particularly the British state, we determined to believe the false narrative put out by the White Helmets and similar organizations, the false narrative that this was a chemical weapons attack by Assad on his people.

    READ MORE: All NATO Members Expressed Support for US-Led Airstrikes Against Syria

    Sputnik: Do you believe that the investigation will be carried out? It seems that they have already arrived at the OPCW and will be investigating. Will the strike really change the findings of this investigation?

    Tony Kevin: I hope the investigation will take place and I hope it will be allowed to produce its findings, but unfortunately the caravan has moved on in the sense that Britain and the United States and France have convinced themselves and a few allies like Germany and my own country Australia, that the chemical weapons narrative, the false narrative is true. The genie is out of the bottle, and as in the two cases of the false narrative five years ago and then again last year, once the stories get out and require a certain media momentum, they may create political mileage and it's hard to turn them back. I mention the White Helmets they were set up about six years ago by a British special services officer called James Le Mesurier, they are very well funded from Britain and the United States and some Gulf states. They are a pro-Sunni, anti-Shia organization, they are a pro-extremist organization, they claim to be moderate people who are only about human rights and helping people medically, but they have a terrible record of atrocities and propaganda, and I'm convinced that they're a very malevolent organization indeed, so anything that involves the White Helmets I automatically mistrust.

    READ MORE: Germany to Use All Means to Resolve Issue of Syria's Chemical Weapons

    Sputnik: Who do you think these White Helmets are working for, and to what end are they working and why is it that you mistrust them?

    Tony Kevin: They are an essential tool of the UK and the US deep state, they are there to destabilize Syria, to destabilize Assad, basically, to destroy the secular and multicultural state that most of the Syrian people would like to maintain and restore.

    Sputnik: It's also interesting that the UK officials from May's party and opposition parties as well are criticizing the move that she made and saying that she had no right to do this without parliamentary consent. Trump also didn't have the support of Congress in deciding this strike, what kind of effect do you think this is going to have on their internal politics?

    Tony Kevin: I don't think a great deal, executive governments in Britain and America and here in Australia are very keen to hold on to their executive ability to declare war without warning, and I think the argument of parliament or congress, we have a similar argument here, is to say: hang on, this should have to go through parliament, it will be a long-running argument and there's no guarantee it will ever be successful, because executive authority is so powerful. I think in a way it's a bit of a side issue, the more important thing is just to raise the light of truth on what are the effects on the ground. I think your foreign minister Lavrov has been very important in what he's been saying, I think Zakharova your spokesperson has been very important in what she's been saying, and, of course, your president, Mr. Putin, and I think there's an element of skepticism against what the American and British, and French governments are saying: We've been here before, we went through all this with Saddam Hussein in Iraq back in 2002, we know it was all untrue then and the same sort of narrative is being replayed now.

    The views and opinions expressed by Tony Kevin are those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

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


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    airstrike, UN’s Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Syria, United States
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