BEIRUT, LEBANON (4:32 P.M.) – With the Western colonial media in overdrive (calling it mainstream media gives it a sense of legitimacy, something that they have not earned yet) as they struggle to counter the plethora of evidence that the Syrian government was not responsible for the chemical attack in Idlib last week, they have resorted to attempts at character assassination to compensate for their lack of facts.
Exactly a week ago, I released an article just a few hours after the chemical attacks occurred that raised questions and holes in the official story that the Syrian Air Force dropped sarin gas on its own civilians. Keeping in mind that this was released just hours after the attack, much more evidence has emerged that proves holes in the official story offered by terrorist affiliates, Western media and politicians since the article was released.
Scott Ritter writes in his Huffington Post article that “Sarin, however, is an odorless, colorless material, dispersed as either a liquid or vapor; eyewitnesses speak of a “pungent odor” and “blue-yellow” clouds, more indicative of chlorine gas. And while American media outlets, such as CNN, have spoken of munitions “filled to the brim” with Sarin nerve agent being used at Khan Sheikhoun, there is simply no evidence cited by any source that can sustain such an account.”
The description given by eye witness accounts contradicts the very nature of sarin gas. However, this has not stopped colonial media, including those in Australia such as The Daily Telegraph, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) and Sky News Australia from spouting out their propaganda and imperial agendas.
What all these colonial media outlets have relied on are accounts from the Al-Qaeda affiliated White Helmets. Yes, the very media who were begrudging the 9/11 attacks where nearly 3,000 Americans died, are now using their affiliates as “reliable and impartial” sources.
Journalist Vanessa Beeley, who has visited Syria many times through the duration of this terrible war for investigative journalism work, has written copious amounts of materials that exposes the White Helmets and their affiliations to Al-Qaeda; some of her works can be seen here. And like amateurs, videos of Al-Qaeda executing people and the White Helmets dealing with the bodies have been released, as well as many photographs of the White Helmets celebrating with Al-Qaeda side-by-side, or members of the White Helmets fighting with Al-Qaeda themselves. These are the people that the colonial media are relying on for information and condemning the Syrian government for supposedly targeting their own civilians, for no reason whatsoever.
With endless information available that rubbishes any claim that the Syrian government dropped chemical weapons on their own civilians, colonial media, especially in Australia, have reduced their lack of explanation for what happened in Idlib to character assassination attempts on those who are fighting the information war. This demonstrates the very desperation of colonial media propaganda, especially when they realize that their lies are no longer susceptible to the public as they were in the 2013 Ghouta chemical attack.
We begin with this piece by Murdoch-run The Daily Telegraph and authored by Armenian-background Kylar Loussikian.
Loussikian states in his article that “Dr Anderson thinks the sarin gas attack that provoked the missile strikes against Syria was a “false flag”. Well, as highlighted earlier in this article, that seems a little obvious. But that did not stop him from pushing this incorrect claim.
Loussikian also describes the Syrian president as: “Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad’s cruel regime.” This is especially alarming as the “cruel regime”, as he terms it, has been defending Armenians across Syria. This ludicrous claim just comes weeks before the release of “The Promise”, a movie about the horrors of the Armenian Genocide, where Turkish authorities exterminated around 1.5 million Armenians. Even anti-Syrian government Al-Jazeera acknowledges that the Syrian government protected the Armenian minority in the country, while Western-backed Free Syrian Army brigades exterminated them.
“The government was protecting the Armenians, but we were targeted by Free Syrian Army rockets, which they were sending from far away,” Angel Agamyan, a Syrian-Armenian, told Al-Jazeera. Many of the estimated 100,000 Armenians in Syria sided with President Bashar al-Assad in the Syrian war, and are often targeted by anti-government forces as a result, the report continued.
Perhaps Loussikian should broaden his horizons and find out why the Syrian Armenians support what he describes as a “cruel regime”. Further, perhaps he can explain why Armenia for the duration of the war has maintained strong relations with the “cruel regime” and why Armenia is one of the only countries to maintain a diplomatic presence in the city of Aleppo, even during the four year long bitter battle between militant forces and the government.
In speaking with Al-Masdar News, Kevork Almassian of Syriana Analysis and a Syrian-Armenian from Aleppo, rubbished Loussikian’s claim of a “cruel regime”. He explained that the Syrian War draws comparisons to that of the Armenian Genocide.
“The collective memory of the Armenians remind them of the Armenian Genocide. What’s going on in Syria since 2011 is a Genocide on wider level, where not only Armenians, but all religious sects and ethnicities are targeted to systematic extermination by anti-Assad Islamist groups. I have to assure that the so called “moderate rebels” are no different from ISIS or Al-Nusra, they have similar ideology, but the mainstream media and the ruling elites in the West need a proxy force to fight their war, so they choose to call them as “moderates”,” he said.
He then explained his own family’s experiences with these so-called “moderate” rebels.
“These so called “moderates” kidnapped my brother and they were going to slaughter him if we didn’t pay a big ransom,” Almassian revealed.
He then, as a Syrian-Armenian, dismissed Loussikian’s claims of a “cruel regime”.
“Whether you agree with President Assad or not, he is the most moderate, progressive and independent politician among the competitors. Syrians fought this war to remain independent, so Loussikian’s statements has no value whatsoever, because only the Syrian people decide whether Assad should stay or not, whether his government is ‘cruel’ or not,” he said.
“Non-Syrian orientalists have the right to only stay silent,” Almassian concluded.
Perhaps someone should also remind Loussikian the events in 2014 at the Armenian village of Kessab in Syria’s Latakia province, where fighters of the al-Nusra Front, Sham al-Islam, and Ansar al-Sham, advanced directly from Turkish territory to attack the settlement. Armenia’s Minister of Diaspora, Hranush Hakobyan, revealed that Armenian churches had been defaced, crosses on the churches had been removed, and property looted in Kessab. Ruben Melkonyan, deputy dean of the Oriental Studies department at Yerevan State University, said that the Armenian community of Kessab was unlikely to recover and that what had happened were “crimes that make a genocide“. But of course, who liberated the Armenian village that allowed for its inhabitants to return? The very forces that are defending what Loussikian irresponsibly terms as a “cruel regime”. Of course however, we live in a free and open society where people can choose to earn money by slandering the Syrian president and the forces that have died defending the Armenian minority in Syria, on the cusps of a movie being released on the Armenian Genocide.
However, the slander did not stop with Loussikian, but continued with Michael Koziol. This time, Tim Anderson and Jay Tharappel were in the crosshairs of the colonial media outlet.
Kozio writes in his article that “Jay Tharappel, who tutors human rights in the same Sydney University department as Dr Anderson, called News Corp journalist Kylar Loussikian “traitorous scum who desperately wants a second Armenian genocide”.”
In speaking with Al-Masdar News, Tharappel explained that he spoke to Koziol over the phone on Tuesday morning in Australia, and that it became apparent to him that his concern was not the propaganda against Syria but defending “Daily Telegraph journalist Kylar Loussikian, as if that’s even important.”
“I pleaded with Koziol to at least mention what my fundamental contentions regarding the Syrian conflict actually are. I summarized it in three easy points, which I mentioned over the phone, texted to him, and posted publicly on Facebook with him tagged,” Tharappel explained.
He explained the three points as: “A. The forces waging war against the Syrian government are more reactionary than the status quo. B. They are unpopular among the Syrian people who largely oppose their attempts to topple the state. C. They are infinitely more reliant on external support than internal discontent.”
“On those grounds, our position, supporting the defense of the Syrian government, and asserting that only Syrians have the right to determine their internal affairs, is the only ethical stance one can take. That he couldn’t mention these points only shows how committed the Western corporate media are to their one-sided narrative, which ultimately serves the regime-change and balkanisation agenda,” he concluded.
He emphasized that Koziol did not allow him a platform to express his position, but rather resorted to slander.
Koziol then explained in his piece that the Centre for Counter Hegemonic Studies in which Anderson is the Director and Tharappel an associate member of, will next Tuesday and Wednesday be hosting a conference on the Syrian War at the University of Sydney.
Now we move onto Sky News who also joined in the slander attempts against Anderson in coordination with Tim Blair from the Daily Telegraph.
Again, typical to the colonial media agenda, Blair could not refute Anderson’s evidence of the propaganda surrounding the Idlib chemical attack. Rather, he goes onto explain how Anderson was once a member of a Wikileaks Party, mentions his visits to Syria, and then states that Anderson believes everything is streamlined by US imperialism. Not once did he attempt to refute any of Anderson’s evidence and rather takes the slander approach. The only thing that can explain Blair’s approach is that he had no facts or evidence to refute Anderson.
And then, we move onto the most comical smear attempt of this coordinated character assassination attempts against Anderson, and in this case, against myself: This time by the ABC’s “Media Watch” (video can be seen here). Media Watch is supposedly meant to critique the Australian media, however, in the case of chemical attack in Idlib, it tows the line of the colonial media and offers no refute to myself or Anderson in the evidence we put forward.
The host and self-described “investigative journalist”, Paul Barry, just like Blair goes for the slander approach rather than offer anything substantive to refute evidence put forward. Rather, in a smuggish manner, he dismisses the fact that “rescuers” were not wearing safety attire as if it were no big deal when addressing evidence in my article published last week. Barry as an “investigative journalist” should have researched that any contact with sarin gas would induce vomiting, release of bladder, as well as the bowels. Or at the minimum he would talk to a chemical expert or toxicologist.
Of course, as an “investigative journalist”, he provided no refutes to the evidence put forward, but attempts to dismiss my research as I have “been putting out that message on Russia’s government-owned Radio Sputnik,” he said without a sense of hypocrisy from the studios of Australian-government owned ABC. Of course, as an “investigative journalist” he alleges Al-Masdar News is owned by me, but a very simple and quick “investigation” would clearly state who the CEO is. Very little investigation was made by the “investigative journalist” who reduced himself to slander on a show that is meant to critique the Australian media.
The character assassination attempts by The Daily Telegraph, Sky News and the ABC only demonstrates a calculated and coordinated effort to slander fellow Australian journalists, academics and activists. None of these publications or television shows could provide an ounce of evidence to refute claims made, unless you consider Al-Qaeda affiliated information as reliable, in which only one of the journalists used.
Keeping consistent to the propaganda machine, journalism in Australia has descended into character assassination attempts rather than investigative work to uncover truth and morality. Colonial media in their arrogance still has not realized why more and more people continually question events in Syria unlike the early years of the war. These journalists and media outlets will only be remembered for being on the wrong side of history, and being reduced to desperate attempts to slander rather than refute with evidence.
Despite the slandering, the University of Sydney must be commended for not being spineless and backing its academic staff to have independent opinions and not capitulate to pressures to fire Dr Tim Anderson.
The views of the author do not necessarily reflect those of Al-Masdar News.
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