Aletho News


On Assad and Syria: a Reply to a Reader

By Diana Johnstone | CounterPunch | October 6, 2016

A reader sent me the following short comment on my article about destroying Syria:

“Not a word about Assad’s crimes or Russia bombing civilians?”

Here is my reply to such objections:

Dear …

If you are in need of words about Assad’s crimes or Russia bombing civilians, just look around you. They are everywhere.

First of all, I am not concerned with displaying my disapproval of crimes or of bombing civilians, something that should be taken for granted. I am concerned with avoiding World War III – or even endless war in Syria.

As David Swanson insists, war is a crime. Once you are into a war, and especially a civil war with massive outside intervention, there are bound to be more and more crimes. But by the way, how are you so sure about Assad’s crimes or Russia bombing civilians? Surely you must realize that our media regard them as the enemy and readily believe every version of events that portrays them as villains. An example of obvious exaggeration is official U.S. insistence that Russia deliberately bombs hospitals, etc., where if we do it, it is of course an accident.

I am suspicious of all reports of crimes, knowing how much this war is a propaganda war and how easy it is to misrepresent events in other countries. But measuring how many crimes are committed by whom does not get to the root of the problem. The root of the problem, as I say in my article, is a longstanding ambition by the United States and its allies to replace the Syrian Arab nationalist state with an obedient pro-Western clique, friendly to Israel. Since that seems out of reach at the present, the strategy is simply to keep the war going as long as possible, deepening the chaos, until nobody much is left except the exiles in London being groomed by Western powers to win rigged elections.

By dragging out the war, more and more children will die, as well as adults, whose lives are also worth something. But it is interesting that humanitarian propaganda focuses only on children, as if realizing that most Westerners are totally indifferent to the massive deaths of Arabs – unless they are toddlers. Or kittens.

Best wishes,

Diana Johnstone

October 6, 2016 - Posted by | Militarism

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