21:55 GMT +313 November 2018
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    Hard Facts

    Western Media Coverage of Syria: A Big, Bright Shining Lie

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    John Wight
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    Once again the mainstream coverage of the current conflict in Eastern Ghouta, leaves much to be desired, to say the least. In this week's show, John Wight and former UK ambassador to Syria, Peter Ford discuss how and why it is that the reality of what is happening on the ground in Ghouta is not being reflected in the western media narrative.

    A Big, Bright Shining Lie is the title of the Pulitzer Prize winning account of the Vietnam War by New York Times columnist Neil Sheehan.

    The book's title is applicable today when it comes both to US and Western strategic aims in Syria, as well as the mainstream Western media's coverage of the conflict.

    In line with the Syrian Arab Army's operation to liberate Eastern Ghouta on the outskirts of Damascus — a part of Syria occupied by various Salafi-jihadi groups since 2012 — this mainstream media coverage has lost the plot; painting a picture of an upside down world in which murderous sectarian fanatics are depicted as rebels, while the army fighting them, a conscript army that draws its soldiers from every part of the multicultural and multi-faith mosaic that is Syrian society, is depicted as a latter day Waffen SS: an army of invasion and occupation instead of liberation.

    Winston Churchill said it best: "In wartime truth is so precious, she should always be attended by a bodyguard of lies."

    Britain's former ambassador to Syria, Peter Ford, joins us to explore and analyze the operation to liberate Eastern Ghouta, and to help us make sense of the aforementioned Western media coverage.

    Hard Facts is out every Wednesday. You can join in the conversation here.

    Tags:
    Syrian Arab Army, Peter Ford, Eastern Ghouta, Syria, Russia, Damascus
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