- US launches cruise missile attack against Syrian government
By James Cogan
7 April 2017
Between 8 and 9 p.m., US Eastern Time Thursday, two US warships in the Mediterranean fired a barrage of 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles at a Syrian air base at Shayrat, near the city of Homs. The attack is the first direct assault by the United States on the Russian- and Iranian-backed government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and has plunged the world into days of uncertainty as to the consequences. Highlighting the utter recklessness and criminality of the American action, Russian forces were at the base.
The Syrian government has issued a bitter condemnation of the US attack, denouncing it as “aggression.” There are reports that at least four Syrian troops were killed and that the air base was virtually destroyed.
The Russian military was reportedly given notice that the air base was going to be bombed. Russia has large numbers of aircraft and personnel in Syria assisting Assad’s forces fight a six-year, US-sponsored insurrection by predominantly Islamist militias. If the Russians were given notice, questions remain as to whether they were given a sufficient window of time to withdraw their assets from harm’s way.
The pretext for the US attack is the sinister and dubious allegation that Assad’s air force used chemical weapons in an attack on a rebel-held town on Tuesday. The claims are dubious, above all, because the Syrian government had no motive to use such weapons, knowing that it would be seized upon to demand that Trump order a direct US-led intervention. The Islamist rebels, by contrast, along with their CIA advisors, had ample motive under conditions in which they are facing complete military defeat. Moreover, the Al Qaeda-linked al-Nusra militia is known to be in possession of, and to have used chemical weapons……..
“…..Like the invasion of Iraq, the intervention against Syria is a war crime…..The war against Syria has no popular support. The political shakeup in Washington and the preparations for renewed military aggression have unfolded behind the backs of the American people. The indifference of the ruling establishment to popular sentiment is reflected in the absence as even so much as an opinion poll on this new war of aggression…….The claim that this attack is a response to the Syrian government’s use of poison gas is a transparent lie. Once again, as in the air war against Serbia in 1999, the invasion of Afghanistan in 2001 and Iraq in 2003, and the attack on Libya in 2011, the United States has concocted a pretext to justify the violation of another country’s sovereignty……Barely 200 miles away from the site of the alleged chemical weapons attack, in the city of Mosul, the US has slaughtered hundreds of Iraqi men, women and children, burying entire families alive with bombs and missiles and destroying entire city blocks. Needless to say, the US corporate media is not broadcasting footage of the aftermath of these attacks with their charred dead and scattered body parts. None of the talking heads crying crocodile tears over the alleged gas attack in Syria have managed to summon up an ounce of moral outrage for those killed by the American military.
There is no doubt that the incident in Syria was a concocted pretext for the launching of a long planned US military intervention. The first place to investigate in order to get to the bottom of what happened in Idlib is the division of the CIA responsible for dirty operations in Syria and coordination with US proxy forces organized around Al Qaeda…..”