03:04 GMT +325 February 2017
    Syrian government forces inspect an area near the village of Khan Tuman, south from the provincial capital Aleppo, on December 22, 2015

    Losing the War, Blame Russia

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    Finian Cunningham

    Western politicians, media and the Turkish regime are full of it. The latest wave of refugees on the Syrian-Turkish border are, we are told, terrified civilians fleeing Russian air strikes.

    No doubt civilians are caught up in this war. But many of those portrayed as refugees fleeing now from the northern city of Aleppo are actually retreating militants, who are capitulating because of Russian and Syrian military success in terminating their insurgency.

    As ever distorting reality, the Western news media are transmitting a classic psychological operation in their coverage of the latest stage in what is actually the foreign-backed war of aggression on Syria.

    Incredibly, Russia and the Syrian Arab Army are painted as the “bad guys”, and in turn this narrative is used to build a pretext for “responsibility to protect” – the faux humanitarian cover to allow for unwarranted foreign intervention.

    That intervention could be either in the form of a US-led military invasion into Syrian territory; or in the form of political, legalistic pressure on Russia and Syria to stop their otherwise very effective offensive against illegally armed groups.

    It should be emphasized that these groups, which can be objectively defined as “terrorists”, have been trying to overthrow the elected government of Syria on behalf of foreign powers, including the US, Britain, France and their regional client regimes in Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey.

    German chancellor Angela Merkel was in Turkey this week where she told news reporters that she was “appalled by the humanitarian crisis mainly caused by Russian air strikes” around the northern Syrian city of Aleppo.

    Merkel said she and Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu were now going to urgently press for a “diplomatic solution” to halt the Russian and Syrian military offensive. The German leader erroneously cited United Nations resolution 2254 issued in December as her mandate. The resolution actually gives a priority mandate to defeat terrorist groups, which is what the Syrian army and Russia are doing.

    Meanwhile, Voice of America, the US government-owned news outlet, reported the situation in northern Syria as follows: “The sweeping Russian-backed offensive in northern Syria by President Bashar al-Assad’s military and foreign fighters from Iran, Lebanon and Afghanistan is triggering a humanitarian crisis by propelling thousands of civilians to flee to the Turkish border, say political activists and rebel commanders.”

    Turns out if you read the VOA article that its “political activists and rebel commanders” are integrated with radical jihadist militia linked to al-Qaeda.  Hardly reliable sources.

    Other Western media outlets have also portrayed the events in similar terms impugning Russia as a malign force inflicting suffering on Syrian civilians and “triggering a humanitarian crisis”.

    This narrative is furnishing a “moral imperative” to justify a US-led military coalition deploying boots on the ground. Last week, Saudi and Turkish military forces were reportedly ready to send ground troops into Syria, allegedly to fight Islamist extremists.

    US Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter is due to meet with coalition members this week in Brussels to discuss plans for a ground intervention in Syria. It is not hard to imagine how the purported humanitarian crisis on the Syrian-Turkish border could be invoked as an added pretext for “responsibility to protect”.

    Echoes there of the NATO intervention in Libya back in 2011, which led to murder of Muammar Gaddafi, regime change and the country being overrun by al-Qaeda-type terror networks.

    In Syria, this is all bitterly ironic given the systematic role that the US and its NATO and regional allies have played since March 2011 in infiltrating and destabilizing the once-peaceful country with mercenary proxies and weapons for their illicit scheme of regime change against the Assad government.

    But a more recent nefarious role is seen in how the Turkish regime of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan appears to have deliberately exacerbated the scenes of chaos on Syria’s border.

    It was last week that the Turkish authorities took the decision to close the border crossing north of Aleppo. This has predictably created a bottleneck whereby up to 35,000 people, according to the Turks, are stranded, unable to cross the border to refugee centers. Western media have given much coverage to the chaotic scenes.

    However, the people apparently fleeing Aleppo are not all exactly “innocent civilians”, as the Western media are reporting.

    According to Syrian sources, most of those on the move out of Aleppo are fighters, who have taken their families with them. Those militants belong to the al-Qaeda-linked brigades of Jabhat al Nusra, Ahrar al Sham, Jaish al Fateh and even the notorious Daesh terror group.

    Video footage and images show that among the throng of those fleeing Aleppo for the Turkish border are men donning combat-style uniforms.

    In a TV report this week by France 24, one of the Western media outlets prominently running the narrative of Russian air strikes on civilians, the news team interviewed four Syrian people in a Turkish hospital who had recently come out of Aleppo. All were former “fighters” – or terrorists. Could France 24 not find civilians to interview?

    We should bear in mind too that Aleppo has a total population of 300,000, so the number of people said to have fled the city for the Turkish border is a small minority. Syrian sources say that the vast majority of Aleppo residents are relieved that the Syrian army, backed by Russian air power, is moving in to finally liberate them.

    For the past five years, residents of Aleppo were held under siege by occupying jihadists imposing a reign of terror. The hapless civilians were forcibly kept as human shields to prevent the Syrian army advancing to retake the city. This same scenario has been witnessed in many other towns and cities which have been liberated by the Syrian army, much to the jubilation of the freed inhabitants.

    To be sure, the Western media won’t report on those situations of residents celebrating liberation, as in the towns of Madaya, Rabia, Nubbul, Zahraa, Ataman and Sheikh Miskeen last week, and many others before that, since the Russian military intervention began on September 30.

    The simple truth is that Russia’s military intervention in Syria has enabled the Syrian army to win the war against foreign-backed regime change. Thousands of mercenaries and other illegally armed groups that had been fomented in Syria are now being routed.

    But the Western media are spinning that the Russian-Syrian victory against a criminal covert war is somehow a violation of human rights.

    Indeed such is the success of Russia and its Syrian ally in crushing the foreign subversion that the West is desperately trying to find a new narrative by which to thwart the Russian-Syrian success.

    This is why the West is distorting a humanitarian crisis in Syria and blaming Russia for it. The West and its clients have failed in their covert military project and their cynical political process held in Geneva. They are losing their war in Syria, and now they are resorting to outright propaganda lies against Russia.

    And, unfortunately, gormless Western politicians like Angela Merkel stand shoulder to shoulder with the very people who have created the Syrian crisis and who are inviting even more trouble for Europe.

    The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Sputnik.


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    US-led coalition, invasion, propaganda, air operation, airstrike, terrorism, civilians, mass media, Syrian crisis, al-Qaeda, Daesh, Syrian Armed Forces, Russian Air and Space Forces, Bashar al-Assad, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, United States, Aleppo, Russia, Turkey, Syria
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    • avatar
      Alvaro Marfan
      Yes: "We came. We saw. He died"
    • Jet fuel can't melt steel beams
      Thanks for this article!
    • abcdstrategy
      UN slams airstrike on water treatment facility in Syria’s Aleppo


      "Will that create more refugees? I suppose so. Then Putin will be blamed for the consequences"

      •Blue Pilgrim Kjell Hasthi • a day ago

      The US is an old hand at bombing civilian water supply -- did it in Iraq, and Libya, and now Syria. It takes out electricity, schools, and medical facilities too -- all sorts of civilian stuff. All war crimes, of course, but what does the US care about that as long as it destroys countries and throw them into chaos? That's the purpose. 'Empire of Chaos' as Pepe Escobar terms it. Naomi Klein wrote a book on it: ~Shock Doctrine~.
    • A = π r 2
      A great despinning of the western narrative on Syria. The refugee crisis has been used without restraint to cause suspension of disbelief on a massive scale.
    • avatar
      Ivan Zadorozhny
      Erdogan crying
    • avatar
      vendorin reply toIvan Zadorozhny(Show commentHide comment)
      Ivan Zadorozhny, no he isn't. He is having a heart attack with tears in his eyes.
    • avatar
      Back in the summer of 2015 a new "road map" was put into action by powers not of this world and there is nothing the bad guys try to do will stop it. We entered a new time line and the transition will be tough but it is happening the" bust up" old ways can't be repaired.
    • FlorianGeyer
      I am sure that Russia will hold its nerve and repel a NATO incursion into Syria. Facts on the ground in time will outweigh the lies and blatant false propaganda of NATO.
      The mere fact that people from all over the world can debate here has not been seen in any other major US adventure.
      It is a failing of many military men to fight the new war with the doctrines of previous wars and a stale and bloated officer class is more prone to doing that.

      Germany in the 1930's was freed from past military doctrine when the old regime was swept away and new military thinking enabled huge success's in the early days of WW2.

      Russia after the fall of the Soviet Union was also able to discard all the outdated training to fight 'the last war' and to focus on the future. The results we can see now are a testament to new thinking for new wars.
    • avatar
      michaelin reply tovendor(Show commentHide comment)
      vendor, whoa! he has a heart????? :)
    • avatar
      michaelin reply toFlorianGeyer(Show commentHide comment)
      Florian, maybe in your statement of people from around the world debating here, old thinking regarding criticism of the 'powers that be' is also changing. There is no longer the internal dissent for governments to deal with but the publicised global condemnations which over time may filter their way to the general populace. I realise that this has been happening for a while but is the pace increasing? :)
    • FlorianGeyerin reply tomichael(Show commentHide comment)

      It was Winston Churchill that said 'The first casualty in war is truth'. This has always been the case BUT now the propaganda of any country or group of countries, for example NATO is countered by the use of the internet to obtain an alternative view of events. If the information is collated intelligently it is revealing when compared to actual events that are also instantly available from the plethora of civilians with smart phone access.

      Russia realises this ,whilst the US and NATO seem to be confounded by their own propaganda.

      When the printing press came to be available the power of the church was dissipated as information given in church sermons was no longer the only information readily available.

      There was always local gossip of course, but that was akin to the US State Dept exclusively using Twitter prove an event.
    • avatar
      michaelin reply toFlorianGeyer(Show commentHide comment)
      Florian, all so true. This brings to mind a thread in the past couple weeks which led to the question of what can we do to be part of this. One of the responses was about people sharing the Sputnik link and talking with others about it. I am inclined to think that there are those of who can do more. :) Naturally, I don't know what other contributors can and actually do. Such is the nature of privacy here. :) It is a start however...:)
    • Ann
      Everything "western" is beginning to literally make me sick to my stomach. The lies are so blatant and in-your-face now, I don't understand how it is allowed to continue - has the world gone completely mad?
    • Ann in reply toabcdstrategy(Show commentHide comment)
      abcdstrategy, Gee, No wonder who pulled that one off...
    • Ann in reply toabcdstrategy(Show commentHide comment)
      abcdstrategy, Sounds like the Syrian govt needs to shut down it's air space...
    • Ann in reply tomichael(Show commentHide comment)
      michael, If you really want to be part of this, we could use some help in the MSM. You see, more of us need to go there, and set the record straight. The MSM comments sections are turning around. They get upset when Russia/Putin bashing articles get shot down by commenters with the facts. This is important, because there are still people out there who don't know the facts, and just jump onto what everyone else is saying. I've found it quite pleasant when little remarks I had made, found their way into the comments of others. That means the truth IS having an impact and making a difference.

      Please, spread your knowledge around where it's needed. You CAN change the world and change minds.
    • avatar
      "Western politicians, media and the Turkish regime are full of it. The latest wave of refugees on the Syrian-Turkish border are, we are told, terrified civilians fleeing Russian air strikes"

      "LUDICROUS! Lying out loud has been the western value for a very long time.
    • Adrienne Adonis
      Why isn't Merkel appalled about the raping migrants that she invited in her own country ?
    • avatar
      michaelin reply toAnn (Show commentHide comment)
      sixpack6t9, pm sent. :)
    • Al SAN
      I thought German were smarter by choosing a president. The have a Thatcher-style, dog faced, ugly of course, Hitler inspired and finally protecting and backing Ottoman Sultan and his sunni- terrorist allies.
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