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Sun Aug 25, 2013, 10:54 AM

U.S. Rebuffs Syrian Decision to Allow Inspection

Source: Wall Street Journal


DAMASCUS, Syria—Syria said Sunday it would allow United Nations inspectors currently present in Damascus immediate access to areas around the capital where the opposition accused the regime of using chemical weapons against fighters and civilians five days ago.

But the U.S. rebuffed Syria's decision, saying the offer came too late to be credible.

"If the Syrian government had nothing to hide and wanted to prove to the world that it had not used chemical weapons in this incident, it would have ceased its attacks on the area and granted immediate access to the U.N.— five days ago," a senior administration official said.

"At this juncture, the belated decision by the regime to grant access to the U.N. team is too late to be credible, including because the evidence available has been significantly corrupted as a result of the regime's persistent shelling and other intentional actions over the last five days," the official added.

Earlier, the U.N. said its inspection team was preparing to start its fact-finding mission on Monday after a presenter on Syrian state television, reading a statement attributed to an unnamed official at the Syrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said agreement was reached following a meeting between Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem and Angela Kane, the U.N. disarmament chief, who arrived in Damascus on Saturday.

Read more: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323407104579034633663263254.html



Also very relevant:

U.N. Slowing Its Own Chemical Weapons Investigation In Syria
Posted By Colum Lynch, Noah Shachtman Friday, August 23, 2013 - 1:45 PM

The world's governments are demanding that Syria immediately let United Nations inspectors onto the scene of alleged chemical attacks that killed as many as 1,800. But even if Bashar al-Assad's regime gave the inspectors permission to visit the disputed battlefields right now, they still couldn't leave. The U.N. is blocking its own inspectors, at least for the moment.

Kevin Kennedy, a retired U.S. Marine colonel who heads the U.N. Department of Safety and Security, told a small group of reporters at U.N. headquarters on Friday that he hasn't given the inspection team a green light to visit the site of the supposed attacks. His office is still carrying out a security assessment to see if it is safe enough to go.

...

Meanwhile, his inspectors wait -- as the world tries to figure out why either side in Syria's awful civil war would've launched a chemical attack with U.N. inspectors so close by. (Russia is hinting at rebel responsibility for the attack, while the U.S. and its allies are blaming Assad's forces.) "

...

http://thecable.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2013/08/23/un_blocking_its_own_chemical_weapons_investigation_into_syria

51 replies, 6487 views

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Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 51 replies Author Time Post
Reply U.S. Rebuffs Syrian Decision to Allow Inspection (Original post)
Catherina Aug 2013 OP
Mnemosyne Aug 2013 #1
deurbano Aug 2013 #8
Mnemosyne Aug 2013 #10
Arctic Dave Aug 2013 #2
Le Taz Hot Aug 2013 #50
Wilms Aug 2013 #3
Mnemosyne Aug 2013 #11
heaven05 Aug 2013 #13
Harmony Blue Aug 2013 #14
L0oniX Aug 2013 #17
Catherina Aug 2013 #18
KansDem Aug 2013 #24
warrant46 Aug 2013 #27
Harmony Blue Aug 2013 #4
yoloisalie Aug 2013 #5
Harmony Blue Aug 2013 #6
Mnemosyne Aug 2013 #12
atreides1 Aug 2013 #20
Wilms Aug 2013 #22
Catherina Aug 2013 #23
bemildred Aug 2013 #9
Catherina Aug 2013 #16
KittyWampus Aug 2013 #41
ronnie624 Aug 2013 #51
nashville_brook Aug 2013 #7
GeorgeGist Aug 2013 #15
Sunlei Aug 2013 #19
awoke_in_2003 Aug 2013 #21
MisterP Aug 2013 #25
Mojorabbit Aug 2013 #26
Bosonic Aug 2013 #28
Benton D Struckcheon Aug 2013 #30
John2 Aug 2013 #33
Benton D Struckcheon Aug 2013 #34
jzodda Aug 2013 #37
Benton D Struckcheon Aug 2013 #29
John2 Aug 2013 #31
Benton D Struckcheon Aug 2013 #32
John2 Aug 2013 #35
AverageJoe90 Aug 2013 #43
jzodda Aug 2013 #38
AverageJoe90 Aug 2013 #44
Ash_F Aug 2013 #36
warrant46 Aug 2013 #40
dipsydoodle Aug 2013 #39
AverageJoe90 Aug 2013 #42
daleo Aug 2013 #45
Peace Patriot Aug 2013 #46
steve2470 Aug 2013 #47
Javaman Aug 2013 #48
yurbud Aug 2013 #49

Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 11:09 AM

1. If it goes anything like the inspection in Iraq, won't matter what the inspectors report. nt

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Response to Mnemosyne (Reply #1)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 11:40 AM

8. Daniel Ellsberg said presidents first decide to go to war, THEN find the pretext.

I saw him speak at Cal the fall before the American war on Iraq began, and he said that (in his opinion) the war was already a done deal. I hope President Obama hasn't already made the decision... and is just in the "finding the pretext" phase.

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Response to deurbano (Reply #8)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 11:46 AM

10. I would love to hear him speak! Last speaker I heard was John Waters, and he was brilliant, but not

very political.

I hope the Prez puts the brakes on this, asap.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 11:16 AM

2. If this is true then Obama mask has come completely off.

 

He is bush. And he will be just as worthless as that piece of garbage.

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Response to Arctic Dave (Reply #2)

Mon Aug 26, 2013, 10:43 AM

50. +1

I don't even know what to say anymore.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 11:26 AM

3. Hmmm, this sounds familiar.


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Response to Wilms (Reply #3)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 11:47 AM

11. Way too familiar, Wilms. And you should add a graphic photo warning, almost



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Response to Wilms (Reply #3)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 11:53 AM

13. cabal of evil

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Response to Wilms (Reply #3)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 11:53 AM

14. That is so creepy.

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Response to Wilms (Reply #3)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 12:11 PM

17. That pic is missing the prison bars across the front. n/t

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Response to L0oniX (Reply #17)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 12:20 PM

18. Prison bars is too kind. n/t

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Response to Catherina (Reply #18)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 01:34 PM

24. I see seven more for GitMo

Be sure to have them take off their shoes when they pass through security...

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Response to Wilms (Reply #3)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 03:13 PM

27. Here was their Lap Dog



Colin Powell holding a model vial of anthrax while giving a presentation to the United Nations Security Council.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 11:29 AM

4. What in the world is the U.S. doing?

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Response to Harmony Blue (Reply #4)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 11:35 AM

5. Saving

 

Saving women and children from chemical weapon attack. DUH

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Response to yoloisalie (Reply #5)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 11:39 AM

6. This is disgusting if this is true

the U.S. has no room for error of this magnitude. Let the U.N. inspectors do their job.

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Response to Harmony Blue (Reply #6)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 11:49 AM

12. We let them do their work in Iraq, all was ignored. nt

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Response to yoloisalie (Reply #5)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 12:27 PM

20. Just like the US saved all of those Iraqis

The 100,000 that died in the US invasion of Iraq...and that's just a small estimate!

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Response to yoloisalie (Reply #5)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 12:52 PM

22. By bombing them and ruining the infrastructure?

Did you hear about the Persian Gulf and Iraq Wars? The No-Fly Zone? Vietnam?

THINK it through. We have enough knee-jerk responders ru(i)nning the country and every other one they see fit to attack.

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Response to yoloisalie (Reply #5)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 01:03 PM

23. You mean like the chemical attack the UN believed the rebels launched that we dismissed?

That news wasn't very convenient so we brushed it aside.

Latest update: 06/05/2013

Syrian rebels 'used sarin gas', says UN’s del Ponte

UN human rights investigator Carla del Ponte said on Sunday that evidence has emerged indicating that chemical weapons have been used by Syrian rebels.

Syrian rebels have used the deadly nerve agent sarin in their fight against President Bashar al-Assad’s regime, according to evidence from victims and doctors, UN human rights investigator Carla del Ponte said.

“According to the testimonies we have gathered, the rebels have used chemical weapons, making use of sarin gas,” del Ponte, a former Swiss war crimes prosecutor and a member of a UN commission of inquiry on Syria, said in an interview with Swiss Italian broadcaster RSI on Sunday.

She said there was “still not irrefutable proof, (but) very strong suspicions, concrete suspicions that sarin gas has been used. Assistance to victims shows this.”

...

She said that as far as the UN commission had been able to determine, “sarin gas has been used ... by opponents,.”

...

http://www.france24.com/en/20130506-syria-un-del-ponte-chemical-weapons-gas-rebels-assad


6 May 2013 Last updated at 15:06 GMT

UN's Del Ponte says evidence Syria rebels 'used sarin'

Testimony from victims of the conflict in Syria suggests rebels have used the nerve agent, sarin, a leading member of a UN commission of inquiry has said.

Carla Del Ponte told Swiss TV that there were "strong, concrete suspicions but not yet incontrovertible proof".

Ms Del Ponte did not rule out the possibility that government forces might also have used chemical weapons.

Later, the commission stressed that it had "not reached conclusive findings" as to their use by any parties.

"As a result, the commission is not in a position to further comment on the allegations at this time," a statement added.

The BBC's Imogen Foulkes in Geneva says the statement was terse and shows that the UN was taken by surprise at Ms Del Ponte's remarks.

...

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-22424188

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Response to Harmony Blue (Reply #4)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 11:41 AM

9. Trying to get into the Syrian Civil War. nt

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Response to Harmony Blue (Reply #4)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 12:03 PM

16. Following a 15 year MIC plan the neocons wrote in 2000. 7 countries in 5 years

Just read "Rebuilding America's Defenses: Strategies, Forces, and Resources for a New Century". It's all about controlling the region and 3/4 of the world’s natural resources there, so the West can remain the dominant force in the world. Wes Clark called it a neocon "policy coup. He was right on the money.

Iraq
Somalia
Libya
Syria
Lebanon
Sudan
Iran (the grand prize)




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Response to Catherina (Reply #16)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 07:03 PM

41. Wes Clark- lobbied Clinton to intervene in Kosovo & crafted strategy that won there.

MANY DU'ers hated Clark's guts back in the day and stuck up for Milosevic.

So while you start posting Clark's video around DU… just remember that a good portion of the DU'ers in your clique now were ripping him apart back when.

It's obvious you don't get the irony of posting Clark's video.

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #41)

Tue Aug 27, 2013, 01:06 AM

51. Clark's words, as those of an insider,

offer insight into understanding US foreign policy. It doesn't matter if you like him or dislike him.

Your post is gibberish. It consists of four statements with no chain of logic connecting them. It isn't even clear what your conclusion is supposed to be. Clearly your 'argument' is non-sequitur.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 11:40 AM

7. anytime there's refusal to get facts it undermines faith in the process

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 11:58 AM

15. Sounds like something Cheney would say ...

and just as credible.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 12:25 PM

19. take a CORPSE and test it!! W/ atropine being a 'cure' I'm stating they are using pesticide chemical

plenty of those industrial strength pesticides for commercial fogging that will kill people if they breath it.

It is absurd how all the govs are acting when people are dead already and their homes are smashed and gone.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 12:51 PM

21. ...

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 02:43 PM

25. same attitude to Palestine: "we'll give you statehood and democracy when you have statehood and

democracy--and we won't recognize your democracy"

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 03:03 PM

26. I am really discouraged. nt

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 03:41 PM

28. Syria chemical attack evidence may have been destroyed: Hague

(AFP) British Foreign Secretary William Hague on Sunday said that any evidence of a chemical attack by the Syrian regime may have already been destroyed.

"The fact is that much of the evidence could have been destroyed by that artillery bombardment," he said during a press conference after Damascus gave its green light to a mission by UN inspectors. "Other evidence could have degraded over the last few days and other evidence could have been tampered with," he said.

...

Hague expressed concern that too much time had elapsed for the UN inspectors to gather enough concrete evidence. "We have to be realistic now about what the UN team can achieve," he said.

However, he repeated his belief that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's forces were responsible for the alleged attack, claiming "there is a lot of evidence already and it all points in one direction".

http://news.yahoo.com/syria-chemical-attack-evidence-may-destroyed-hague-184029986.html

Discounting the U.N. finding any public evidence, but touting this alternative rock solid evidence. Would it be asking too much for the world citizenry to have a peek at this evidence that has so convinced Mr Hague?

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Response to Bosonic (Reply #28)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 03:53 PM

30. Don't know what Hague's got,

but the evidence from folks on the 'Net who have some expertise in this seems pretty solid:

Claims Of Opposition DIY Weapons Used In This Week's Alleged Chemical Attack

Lots of links in there, I'd advise if you're going to read it to read all of them. The entire package is pretty convincing. No one's drawing any conclusions, but the weight of the evidence is not pointing at the rebels.

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Response to Benton D Struckcheon (Reply #30)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 04:57 PM

33. Is this the evidence

 

you are claiming? You got to be kidding if it is? And what folks are you claiming to have some expertise? First of all, you don't even know where these weapons came from. Are you claiming the Syrian Army gave these people access to such weapons, and are you claiming these people had access to the area when the explosions happened? If they had such access, then why all the fuss about getting access from the Assad Government? The only way access could have been obtained was from the rebels themselves, which puts chain of possession in question. It seems more like a joke to me and a real expert would laugh at it, just like all the other silly claims made by the rebels and their supporters. So why don't they just quit digging their holes deeper and deeper with the lying? The only way they are going to give up this endeavor, is when they are completely annihilated, and the Politicians causing these acts are going to drag their countries prestige even further in the tank. The Government controling England now is another Rightwing Government. Those are whom Mr Haque's Bosses are. He is no virtue of Honesty himself.

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Response to John2 (Reply #33)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 04:58 PM

34. Um yeah. Riight. Carry on without me, please. n/t

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Response to Benton D Struckcheon (Reply #30)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 06:01 PM

37. That blog is pretty weak and you call it evidence?

It sources non credible actors. I would believe the British gov far far far more than I would trust that blog and its sources.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 03:48 PM

29. Angle I hadn't thought of

Residents of Damascus suburbs with anti-Assad folks who are scared of him, and now are scared of a US strike. I can't imagine what that must be like.
On the hopeful side, stories popping out about possible last-minute deal:

So it is not out of the question that the huge pressures exerted on all parties by the chemical weapons attacks might just be enough to pop the cork and force movement towards negotiations, with the latest speculation focusing on Geneva in October.


I guess anything is possible, but the signs aren't particularly good.

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Response to Benton D Struckcheon (Reply #29)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 04:35 PM

31. The Syrian Press is

 

reporting, they have film of the attacks on this area, and proof their Army didn't use any chemical attacks. They are also reporting, the only rebels in control of these areas were elite units of Al Ansar, Al Qaeda, and Europeans trained by the U.S. intelligence service. They are accusing the United States of supporting these groups and wanted the bombing stopped, because they were getting slaughtered by the Syrian Army. They also are making claims, the area they recovered from these groups have cannisters of chemicals made in Saudi Arabia. The claim is their Press has filmed the recovery of this evidence and the military operation. The Syrians are not backing down from their allegations against the U.S. and her allies. I think the U.N. team should still investigate, to show they are not bias. If this is all trumped up lies to invade Syria, then let both sides present their evidence period! I'm an American, and I don't even believe our Government anymore, especially all those rightwing neocons and the people Obama has been appointing to run the Intelligence services. Either he is in charge or they are still in charge of the hen house.

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Response to John2 (Reply #31)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 04:43 PM

32. Presented some stuff from a blog up above,

which seems to be credible, and points at the gov't. Doesn't matter anymore anyway. Everyone now knows the CW is there and it has to be disposed of somehow, given that Hezbollah, Al Qaeda, and a buncha Salafist militias are all there and would all lurvs to get their hands on the stuff. There are no good options left here. The best is a diplo solution brokered by Russia. It's also the least likely.

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Response to Benton D Struckcheon (Reply #32)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 05:04 PM

35. The Syrian Army

 

does not need to use chemical weapons on civilians or against the Terrorists the way they have been kicking their asses. The Syrian Rebels, whom are mostly Terrorists and Foreigners, many trained by the CIA, has every motive to lie. They are very good at lying, torturing and murdering people.

The CIA does have information, Al Qaeda in Iraq has access to crude chemical weapons. They also have access to it from Saudi Arabia, Israel and Turkey. Those are the allegations being made by the Syrian Army. It is justr a matter if you believe those groups are really that dirty and underhanded to do so. I say they are. The U.S. Government no longer have my trust period to be honest.

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Response to Benton D Struckcheon (Reply #32)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 09:02 PM

43. And I don't think Putin's honest enough to even TRY, unless forced to. eom

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Response to John2 (Reply #31)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 06:04 PM

38. The Syrian Press can not be trusted at all

They are total puppets of the regime and report with the threat of violence if they don't spin for the gov. There is no free press in Syria and there never has been.

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Response to jzodda (Reply #38)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 09:03 PM

44. There was never any women's rights, either. Or many other rights, for that matter.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 05:05 PM

36. Haha as we all know, the state department is so good at tracking WMDS. /nt

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Response to Ash_F (Reply #36)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 06:43 PM

40. They have a "Stunning Trail" of success

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 06:42 PM

39. Read as doesn't meet US agenda.

.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 09:01 PM

42. Unfortunately, there may be some truth to this:

"If the Syrian government had nothing to hide and wanted to prove to the world that it had not used chemical weapons in this incident, it would have ceased its attacks on the area and granted immediate access to the U.N.— five days ago," a senior administration official said.

"At this juncture, the belated decision by the regime to grant access to the U.N. team is too late to be credible, including because the evidence available has been significantly corrupted as a result of the regime's persistent shelling and other intentional actions over the last five days," the official added.
'

I can't help but wonder just how far Assad might go to hide his government's possible complicity in these latest attacks; truth is, if he was that confident of being found not guilty.....well, you fill in the blank.

The most glaring piece of evidence pointing to something being quite amiss is the mention of shelling over the past few days; if nothing else, this was a terribly dumbassed move on the part of Damascus.....but there could be coverups going on, too......

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sun Aug 25, 2013, 11:04 PM

45. We won't take yes for an answer

Once again.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Mon Aug 26, 2013, 01:41 AM

46. Deja vu all over again.

Source: Foreign Policy

CIA Files Prove America Helped Saddam as He Gassed Iran

The U.S. government may be considering military action in response to chemical strikes near Damascus. But a generation ago, America's military and intelligence communities knew about and did nothing to stop a series of nerve gas attacks far more devastating than anything Syria has seen, Foreign Policy has learned.

In 1988, during the waning days of Iraq's war with Iran, the United States learned through satellite imagery that Iran was about to gain a major strategic advantage by exploiting a hole in Iraqi defenses. U.S. intelligence officials conveyed the location of the Iranian troops to Iraq, fully aware that Hussein's military would attack with chemical weapons, including sarin, a lethal nerve agent.


http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014575860#post4


And, by deja vu all over again, I don't just mean yet another drumbeat for war. I mean all the lies and dirty tricks that the U.S. war machine commits to serve itself--the war machine--and corporate/1%-er interests. These go all the way back to the Vietnam War--a war created by the CIA to profit the war machine, and foisted on the American people and the Vietnamese by a goddamned lie called "the Gulf of Tonkin"--and forward to every U.S. war since then, including, of course, the most blatant example, the war on Iraq, created to serve the oil interests that grease the war machine. And it includes, a) helping a regime (Saddam Hussein/Iraq) to use chemical weapons, and b) then invading Iraq, and slaughtering a hundred thousand innocent people over WMDS that their government DIDN'T POSSESS.

Lies and dirty tricks.

My opinion: The CIA and/or Mossad did the chem weapons attack in Syria.

-------------------------

Hope? It's hard to come by, these days. But, in my opinion, it starts with REALIZING what occurred between 2002 and 2004, with the plague of private, corporate-run, 'TRADE SECRET' voting machines, all over the USA. US vote counting is now monopolized by ONE, PRIVATE, FAR RIGHTWING-CONNECTED corporation--ES&S (which bought out Diebold). ES&S was started by our current Sec of Defense, Chuck Hagel, and 'counted' his first 'election' to the US Senate. When we understand what that means, we might begin to understand everything else. The very votes that we think we cast are now controlled by the war machine itself.

We cannot NOT have war. We don't have that choice any more. And, though there are many aspects to this war machine control of our government, there are none more important than this, and none more amenable to citizen action, than the 'TRADE SECRET' voting machines. We need to start there. We need to restore vote counting to the PUBLIC VENUE, conducted by us citizens in the light of day, with our eyes on every ballot.

And, once we do that, and start putting REAL representatives of the people into office, then, and only then, will we be able to do everything else that needs to be done, to restore our democracy. We have a lot to do, God knows. We can't do any of it while ES&S is 'counting' the votes with 'TRADE SECRET' code, and, in half the states, NO AUDIT AT ALL (and a miserable 1% audit in the other half).

It's so basic! You want a peaceful country? You want a fair country? You want good government? It starts with the vote counting.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Mon Aug 26, 2013, 03:23 AM

47. "Too late" ?

Sorry, I don't understand that logic.

*censors self*

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Mon Aug 26, 2013, 10:20 AM

48. When first you don't succede...

lie lie again.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Mon Aug 26, 2013, 10:30 AM

49. Jesus! couldn't they at least write a new script instead of recycling the Iraq one blow by blow?

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