by Catherine Shakdam (Main Stories, Crescent International Vol. 45, No. 4, Sha'ban, 1437)
Aleppo, Syria’s largest city and commercial capital before the war, has become a test case for the future of Syria and may become the empire’s graveyard.
If Western regimes have long trampled on Syria’s sovereignty, hoping to lay waste a democratically elected government to better affirm their special brand of imperial exceptionalism, Syrians have proved to be tougher than most observers had imagined. Not to take anything away from other peoples’ struggles when subjected to war, few have fought with greater determination than the Syrians. Five years into a brutal asymmetrical conflict, Syria has managed to carve a path of resistance, when others would have cowered and submitted.
Ostracized by Western powers and their allies, demonized by the corporate media, shunned by most Arabian regimes, pinned down by the vicious Da‘ish hordes and Wahhabi-financed mercenaries, Syria has risen as a giant among nonaligned countries becoming the new graveyard of empires as well as of tyranny. There is more to Syria’s war than political, or even religious ambitions. Syria was merely another domino that was supposed to drop within the grand Zionist chess game that aims to see the Greater Muslim East balkanized. Syria’s war is about the imposition of a new world order — the inception of imperial globalism.
The new world order today means the surrendering of people’s rights and dignity to imperial domination. If anything is to be remembered from Syria’s war, it is the West’s insistence to obliterate a country’s sovereignty in the name of counterterrorism and national security. Whose security is desired and whose rights are being defended when bombs are dropped on civilians? Is there a hierarchy of life when some lives are considered superior to others? Whose lives are being projected ad nauseam as worthier than others? It is clear that safety and the rights of others are being trampled upon in the name of Western democracy — whatever that may mean!
Syria’s war is much more than just another conflict. It is the tale of resistance against oppression and tyranny and barbarism. It is the tale of a people refusing to bow to imposed rule and foreign aggression. There above the clamour of war have stood people that through decades have proved again and again that imperialism still can be opposed and defeated. It is in times of monumental challenges and apparently insurmountable odds that one’s true worth is best demonstrated. Who could deny that Russia, Iran, Hizbullah and, of course the Syrian army have proved their true mettle?
Let us turn our attention to northern Syria, and the city of Aleppo, where the very future of the Muslim East (aka the Middle East) is being played out. For all their effort over the years, massively armed and financed by Western powers and their regional puppets, the Da‘ish terrorists and their patrons are losing against Syria’s steely determination that insists on maintaining its freedom and dignity. The people have rallied around their president with a conviction that has shaken the walls of the palaces in Ankara and Riyadh.
The Da‘ish terrorist mercenaries are on run as the Syrian army advances. Given the incessant propaganda about the West fighting takfiri terrorists, Syrian army advances should have been hailed as a positive development and applauded, or at least viewed as a sign that maybe President Bashar al-Asad is a worthy political protagonist.
Of course, in the eyes of Western politicians, President al-Asad can never hold any redeeming qualities. In this globalist narrative, only terrorists can be rationalized as partners — not democratically elected leaders.
Last month, both the US and the United Nations vented their anger at Damascus over made-up grievances and trumped up charges of war crimes, use of chemical weapons, and other tall tales. The corporate media, as if on cue, act as an echo chamber for such propaganda, while Turkey and Saudi Arabia have worked to further train, arm, and recruit terrorist mercenaries. There is no mention of this, much less opprobrium in the West.
Informed observers of Syria’s scene would recall how Reuters was only too keen to report the babbling of the so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights — a one-man organization run from a flat in Coventry, UK. Reuters news report read, “Air strikes on a camp housing Syrians uprooted by war killed at least 28 people near the Turkish border on Thursday [May 5], a monitoring group [Syrian Observatory for Human Rights] said, and fighting raged in parts of northern Syria despite a deal to cease hostilities in the city of Aleppo.” And, “Footage shared on social media showed rescue workers putting out fires which still burned among charred tent frames, pitched in a muddy field. White smoke billowed from smouldering ashes, and a burned and bloodied torso could be seen in the footage.”
Contrast this with how RT reported on the tragedy, based on empirical evidence, not imaginary sources, “Considering the fracture pattern, seen in the pictures and videos taken at the site, the camp could have been shelled, either intentionally or by mistake, by rocket artillery, which is in active use in the area by militants from the terror group al-Nusra Front,” Major-General Igor Konashenkov, Russian Defense Ministry spokesman, said on Friday [May 6]. He added that after analyzing photographs and video footage from the devastated camp available online, it became evident that “there are no air-strike shell craters or other signs of an air strike.”
The Russian Defense Ministry stated there were no air sorties over the area of the refugee camp on the day of the attack or on the day prior to it. “We have analyzed airspace objective control data for the area as of May 4 and 5, 2016. There were no flights of Russian or any other aircraft over the camp area,” Konashenkov stressed.
Let us look at the road so far. Ever since Russia entered the Syrian fray last September (2015) — at the specific request of Damascus, one must add, and in accordance with international law —Syria has successfully capitalized on Moscow’s military and intelligence assistance, using its troops against Da‘ish bastions. In six months Syria managed to flip the war dynamic to such an extent that Saudi-sponsored “opposition groups” withdrew from the peace talks.
As of last month, President al-Asad’s forces stand on the brink of victory. One last push in northern Aleppo would effectively cut off Da‘ish, and reduce this terror army like a punctured balloon. Needless to say, Turkey and Saudi Arabia have not looked too kindly on Syria’s military successes. And so something dramatic had to take place.
Straight from Washington’s terror handbook, the media began churning out tales of oppression and human desperation. Newspapers and TV networks inundated their publics with war images and stories of heart-breaking hardships. Forever the villain of the story al-Asad was turned into a war criminal intent on slaughtering his people for sport.
Hiding behind the propaganda, the terrorists’ patrons moved in for the kill, ready to deliver a knockout blow to the resistance. By refusing to submit to Western powers’ shadow games, the Syrian people are forced to fight oppression alone. Worse still, those who remain silent and are unable to see beyond political manipulation could soon mean that, they, too, would be denied their rights. This is already happening in some Western countries.
“Al-Nusra Front has gathered a force of some 6,000 fighters in preparation for a major offensive in Syria’s Aleppo province, as terrorists and their allies continue to disrupt the fragile US-Russian brokered ceasefire,” the Russian Defence Ministry said. “The escalation of the situation in a number of Syrian regions is first of all linked to the goal of the leaders of al-Nusra Front and factions allied with it to derail the process of reconciliation,” head of the Russian Center for Reconciliation in Syria, Lieutenant General Sergey Kuralenko said in a statement on May 24. He added, “In the Aleppo region, al-Nusra Front leaders are finishing forming an assault group totalling over 6,000 militants in order to block the government troops in the city with a strike from the east, while in the north they seek to cut off access to the city of Nubl.”
To win in Syria, the unthinkable is taking place: the rationalization of terror as a necessary evil against a state designated as enemy. Look not at al-Nusra military mobilization as another development in Syria, but the very smoking gun of Western guilt. Was it not Washington that received Ahrar al-Sham terrorists as if they were worthy representatives of Syria?
Whatever happens in Aleppo will determine how the war on terror unfolds.