Proof the White Helmets 'Staged' a Chemical Attack in Syria? Syria in 2018 is not Iraq in 2003 Missile Strikes Are Unlikely to Stop Syria's Chemical Attacks, Pentagon Says Chemical weapons coverup suspected in Syria as inspectors remain blocked Each Day That Passes, Pressure Grows For Chemical Inspectors Waiting In Syria

Proof the White Helmets 'Staged' a Chemical Attack in Syria?

Images purportedly proving that the White Helmets staged a chemical attack in Syria are actually stills from a movie set.

Although these images do feature actors, they are not of the “crisis” variety. Syria is Iraq only if facile juxtapositions replace substantive comparisons. Kenneth F. It is unclear if all missiles hit their intended targets. Assad’s chemical weapons program. Loveluck was The Post's 2016 Laurence Stern Fellow. But in the case of the latest attack, a chief suspect is the same government that's hosting the team.

Syria and its ally Russia deny using chemical weapons in the assault on Douma. As our commander in chief, the president has the authority under Article II of the Constitution to use military force overseas to defend important United States national interests. Dunford, Lt. We breathe the same air. Another humanitarian disaster for no reason whatsoever. The residents of the upper floors had signs of smoke inhalation from the fire’s smoke.

What responsibility does the United States have, then, to try to set things right? Last year, Trump’s first in office, it was 3,024. We dropped $120 million worth of bombs on Syria. Any person who lives under a dictatorship is not free to speak their mind. The belief that the White Helmets or similar groups are staging chemical attacks in Syria is not one exclusively held by conspiracy theorists or the uninformed.

McKenzie Jr., the Joint Staff director, said on Thursday of the Syrian government. Russian state news media said on Thursday that Syria found two unexploded cruise missiles after the strikes and has handed them over to Russian officials. It concluded last month that inspectors “did not observe any activities inconsistent” with Syria’s obligations under the Chemical Weapons Convention. Follow @leloveluck The story must be told.

Syria in 2018 is not Iraq in 2003

Why using the 'they lied about Iraq's WMDs' argument doesn't work in Syria.

We were receiving threats since the siege began, prior to the chemical weapons attack. Copyright © 2018 Jpost Inc. Tonight, France, the United Kingdom and the United States took decisive action to strike the Syrian chemical weapons infrastructure.” Advertisement Gen. The same holds true for the two chemical storage facilities located near Homs, especially the one assessed as containing sarin nerve agent and its precursors.

SICK!” By April 9, the U.N. We provided assistance based upon the symptoms of smoke inhalation. Publisher, Zuade Kaufman, and Editor in Chief, Robert Scheer. When you set power politics aside and focus on ethics, is the path forward clearer? So far this year, the total is 11 — all of them over 50 years old. Air strikes better than nothing? This is a state that has put thousands of people in regime detention where they have been tortured to death .

The analogy also seems ignorant of the knowns and unknowns in the case against Iraq. He said the chemical weapons are “spread through the country.” “They still have ability to conduct attacks; I would not rule that out,” General McKenzie said. The missiles alone cost at least $100 million in an attack that was nearly twice as large as a similar strike last year. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said chlorine gas was among the weapons used in the April 7 suspected attack on Douma, outside Damascus.

Analysts and local rescue and medical workers who observed victims have suggested chlorine was used. When the attack took place, things became much more dangerous. First it was Syrian soldiers, fanning out across the area after five years of rebel control. This military facility was a Syrian center for the research, development, production and testing of chemical and biological warfare technology.

Missile Strikes Are Unlikely to Stop Syria's Chemical Attacks, Pentagon Says

A military intelligence report found that the Syrian government is expected to resume its chemical weapons program, despite President Trump saying “mission accomplished.” Here’s how the strike unfolded.

All content © 2018 Truthdig, LLC. The answer largely is no. The State Department says the U.S. has provided more than $7 billion in aid for refugees and internally displaced Syrians since the war started, including about $700 million announced last September. What is the cost per missile? People know what happens to people who speak out against the regime. These images have been online since 2016, and show members of the White Helmets filming a “ mannequin challenge ” video.

Planning for the strike of 105 missiles on three targets — chemical weapons storage and research facilities near Damascus and Homs — took nearly a full week. In that assault, missiles from two American warships targeted a Syrian airfield where officials said Mr. Chlorine, which is commonly used in industrial products, was not outlawed as part of the 2013 agreement. After U.N. Chlorine is a highly volatile compound that evaporates quickly, says Rothbacher. "The best places to sample now are the people who have supposedly been hit," he says.

Alastair W.M. The second target was a chemical weapons storage facility west of Homs. According to The Guardian , intelligence agencies from all three countries “studied videos” from Douma. This is just a publicity stunt.” The “publicity stunt,” however, had served its purpose. The Army of Islam, having been thoroughly defeated on the field of battle by the Syrian army, abandoned Douma for refuge in rebel-held Idlib province.

Personalize your Truthdig experience. In this case, even the philosophers are stumped. Canada has admitted more than 40,000 Syrians.) Frowe says the U.S. also could work to bolster international agreements banning chemical weapons. And where is your evidence that chemicals were indeed used by Assad and not by rebel groups, still supported by US? Although Fisk said he interviewed more than 20 people but didn’t quote anyone who witnessed evidence of a chemical attack, crews from both CBS News and Sweden’s TV4 were on the same convoy as Fisk.

Chemical weapons coverup suspected in Syria as inspectors remain blocked

A team from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons has been unable to begin a probe in Douma after an April 7 attack.

Staging and final preparations for the attack, which lasted roughly two minutes, took hours to carry out. Assad’s forces had launched warplanes that dropped sarin gas on the rebel-held town of Khan Shaykhun, killing more than 80 people and sickening hundreds more . The organization’s inspectors have sought to gain access to Douma to collect evidence of chemical agents but were forced to turn back after coming under gunfire this week.

But Syrian government officials will most likely determine whom inspectors talk to and what they see. Caravan Migrants' Waiting to Cross after Arrival South of U.S. They asked us not to talk about anything. We assessed that this was the primary location of Syrian sarin and precursor production equipment. No actual proof was required, or offered, to sustain these assessments. Patients have shown signs of respiratory distress, central cyanosis, excessive oral foaming, corneal burns, and the emission of chlorine-like odor.

He said that this was an attack using poisonous substances. Your Truthdig, your way. Judging from recent conversations Atlantic associate editor Sigal Samuel had with several moral philosophers , there may be no ethical way now to make a big difference in Syria. And even though they stand little chance of success, the U.S. and allies could continue trying to make Assad face trial for war crimes. Trump's first inclination was to get out of Syria before he started listening to the same regime change cronies that led Obama to think he could change Syria.

Last Saturday, when the United States , the UK and France launched strikes on three chemical facilities in Syria , the move was met with disapproval in some quarters. In Syria, by contrast, US, British, and French intelligence agencies have been unanimous in delivering confident judgments on the regime's responsibility for the chemical attack. Trump announced it on Friday night in Washington as the missiles were hitting Syria before dawn on Saturday.

Russian state news media reported that the Russian military found a rebel chemical lab in the same area. The inspectors arrived in Syria on April 14, on a mission to investigate a suspected chemical attack in the Damascus suburb of Douma seven days earlier. That's not really their job." The political process for ascribing blame is broken, Trapp adds. Yahoo!-ABC News Network | © 2018 ABC News Internet Ventures.

Each Day That Passes, Pressure Grows For Chemical Inspectors Waiting In Syria

An international inspection team has been waiting for nearly a week to investigate an alleged strike in Syria. Former inspectors say the delay will complicate their efforts.

Secretary Mattis asserted as much. “I am confident,” he said, “the Syrian regime conducted a chemical attack on innocent people in this last week, yes. Two issues flow from this line of thinking. During clinical examination, medical staff observed bradycardia, wheezing and coarse bronchial sounds. This resolution  was promptly vetoed  by Russia. People were frightened, there was a struggle; the relatives of the wounded began to spray each other with water.

The moral path seems much narrower, including supporting refugees. In 2014, Russia and China vetoed a U.N. Remember Obama saying that Assad must go? All of these stories published by different outlets corroborate testimony from two men who appeared in the “gas attack” footage spread far and wide by western media and governments. The pre-announced spectacle blew up three buildings and took no lives, but some pronounced it a "dangerous escalation".

Hours later, Mr. Dozens of refueling, reconnaissance, escort and jamming aircraft were airborne. Mattis on Wednesday blamed the Syrian government for the holdup. Unconfirmed reports from the scene suggest that dozens may have died. A U.N. system for investigating chemical weapons violations in Syria broke down last October, after Russia, a close ally of Syria, vetoed its renewal. France, the U.S. and Britain bombed suspected Syrian chemical weapons sites last week, saying Syrian President Bashar Assad's government was behind the Douma attack, which killed at least 40 people.

Absolutely confident of it. First, the Khan Shaykhun incident is not without significant controversy, with its conclusions questioned by numerous experts , journalists and governments . One of the injured was declared dead on arrival. The only difference was that the JIM was specifically mandated to assign blame for an attack, something it did with no small amount of controversy. Other people without medical training began putting anti-asthma inhalers in children’s mouths.

Russia Denies Allegations of Delaying Tactics and Evidence Tampering in Syria

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Friday denied allegations that Russia is working with the Syrian government to keep international inspectors away from the chemical weapons attack site in Douma so the evidence can be destroyed.

Security Council resolution referring the conflict to the International Criminal Court. Syria is a sovereign nation that invited the Russians to come in and give assistance, while the USA is in Syria illegally under international law. Almost no one picks up the Sputnik pieces, but because Fisk is a Western journalist working for the Independent , people will pick him up and run with it. Some spoke of its "illegality".

Trump said on Twitter that the allied strikes to punish Mr. As the American military planned the strikes, the White House and the Pentagon weighed several different Syrian installations and bases that might be targeted. And on Thursday, the State Department accused Russia of helping Mr. But so far the inspectors have been unable to reach the location of the attack to verify the facts for themselves.

Zammar, a Syrian-born German, was a key member of a Hamburg jihadist cell that included three of the Sept. Then the pressure increased. There may have been more than one agent used. One of the major problems confronting those who contend that both sarin and chlorine were used in the alleged Douma incident is the absolute incompatibility of the two substances. Other patients were treated with humidified oxygen and bronchodilators, after which their condition improved.

We didn’t see a single patient with signs of chemical poisoning.” Khalil Azizah claimed that the incident in question took place on April 8, one day after the alleged attack of April 7. President Bashar Assad has pretty much won this war, with huge help from Iran, Hezbollah and Russia. One of those philosophers is Helen Frowe of the University of Stockholm, who specializes in the ethics of war and foreign intervention.

Will Trump run in 2020? Then the Russians of course will have an organized strategy to promote Fisk’s piece, and the network of [pro-Assad] activists will know this and will give it the amplification they need. The action, which lasted less than an hour, was an escalation only if everything that preceded it was normal. Therein lies the lesson: Facile contrarianism is an intellectual dead end that contributes to moral atrophy and reactionary politics.

The Latest: France demands access for chemical inspectors

Get breaking national and world news, broadcast video coverage, and exclusive interviews. Find the top news online at ABC news.

Assad’s government “sanitize” Douma of evidence of a chemical attack. A United Nations reconnaissance team that visited the area on Tuesday came under fire and was forced to turn back. The team is made up of scientists, medical experts and engineers from all over the world. Dillon says Zammar is in SDF custody. Their houses have been raided by police and regime forces who have checked carefully to make sure no one has hidden any samples.

A  U.S. In several cases involving more severe exposure to the chemical agents, medical staff put patients on a ventilator, including four children. Suddenly, the OPCW fact-finding mission had new relevance. However, he referred to the same video shot by the White Helmets and pointed to his image in the video as one of the personnel providing medical treatment. He will continue using indiscriminate shelling, barrel bombs and other terror tactics against civilians and combatants to take back more rebel-held territory.

Russia would certainly veto another such resolution. Sponsor of D.C. Fisk responded by asserting “No, not at all, it isn’t my job to write for friends of Assad or Russians or Jeremy Corbyn or anyone else. The action was illegal only if by legality we mean approval by the UN Security Council. We can differ on our views about the best course for achieving peace, but we must not allow our conclusions to determine which facts we acknowledge and which we don't.

With those countries’ permission, the United States flew B-1 bombers from Qatar along with one electronic warfare jet and refueling aircraft, Pentagon officials said. At the United Nations, Russia maintained that the April 7 attack was a hoax fabricated by Mr. For now, the inspectors are sitting in their hotel rooms, waiting. "There's nothing they can do. It's a big, confusing, messy world, and Parallels draws on NPR correspondents around the globe to connect the dots and make sense of it all.

Int'l inspection vehicles arrive at Syria chemical weapons attack site

The US State Department said that Russia and Syria are attempting to "sanitize" the site where the chemical weapons attack is said to have taken place.

Six casualties were reported at the center, one of whom was a woman who had convulsions and pinpoint pupils. If the OPCW team confirmed the findings of the Russian reconnaissance team, there would be no case for military action. As such, there is no doubt that the incident Khalil Azizah refers to is the same one recorded by the White Helmets. If the past is an indication, he may resort to chemical weapons again.

Times change, however. Mark Abeln & Monica Little David & Debbie Andreas Edward R. I try to find out what happened. But the Security Council is not a neutral adjudicating authority like a court. Let us certainly not distort or bend the truth to satisfy our preconceptions. Still, the official said, the strikes successfully helped “re-establish the deterrent” by proving that Mr. The bombers likely launched cruise missiles from Jordanian territory.

They can't force their way in," says Dieter Rothbacher, a former chemical weapons inspector. Want to know more? Syria and its Russian backers deny that government forces were responsible for the reported attack in the town of Douma. The CDC and the Food and Drug Administration say the Yuma, Arizona, growing region is the source, but no farm has been identified. We are not ruling out sarin right now.” Mattis was asked about a statement he had made the previous day, April 12, when he appeared before the House Armed Services Committee.

SAMS has documented 43 casualties with similar clinical symptoms of excessive oral foaming, cyanosis, and corneal burns. The  OPCW advance party  deployed to Beirut on Thursday, April 12, and was joined by the rest of the team on Friday, April 13. Hydrogen cyanide is something not found in either chlorine or sarin exposure, but  prevalent in the smoke produced by structure fires . And U.S. officials will be pressed once more to respond.

Syria blocks inspectors, sparking concerns about a coverup

I did. Its decisions are constrained by the interests of its permanent members. Have your say. Trump was willing to take military action. A variety of cruise missiles were used in the strikes to distance allied ships, aircraft and one American submarine from a potential counterattack. Eric Schmitt in Washington and Rick Gladstone in New York contributed reporting. The OPCW is responsible for overseeing the Chemical Weapons Convention — a 1997 treaty banning the production, stockpiling and use of such weapons.

The Russian Defense Ministry has claimed the incident was staged by Britain and a Russian general in Syria says no evidence of chemical weapons has been found in Douma. In the closely watched race, Debbie Lesko, a former state lawmaker, turned back a spirited challenge from a first-time Democratic candidate seeking to flip the seat from GOP hands. Then, Mattis put forward a theory that chlorine gas or sarin nerve agent—or a combination of the two—had been used by the Syrian government.

Civil Defense [White Helmet] volunteers were unable to evacuate the bodies due to the intensity of the odor and the lack of protective equipment. Their plan was to deploy to Damascus on Saturday, April 14, and begin their work shortly thereafter. The Western media  aired its own recorded interviews of alleged victims  who had fled from Douma to refugee camps along the Turkish border. After the Trump administration’s threats and bluster, after the policy debates about whether and how hard to hit Assad, was attacking Syria’s chemical weapons facilities the right thing to do?

There is no practical, ethical path forward. The contents of the story and the quote he published have been widely repeated by both Russian propaganda outlets and Assad regime supporters . Although the Syrian civil war is now in its seventh bloody year, the attack on Douma that killed scores and injured hundreds of persons, including many children, caught international attention. This depends on what answer is being sought.

A Shocking Lack of Intelligence in Our Missile Strike on Syria

We have more than once presented the evidence that we have, including pictures and people’s interviews. Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi's office says Iraqi fighter jets launched "lethal" airstrikes against the extremists in an area along the border. Disclaimer: Please read. The next day, April 14, Assistant to the Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs Dana W. The negotiations, however, broke down as factions within the Army of Islam balked at having to leave Douma without their weapons.

The Russian military experts who visited Douma on April 9 were no doubt aware of this. Not to be outdone, the head of the White Helmets claims to have provided the OPCW fact-finding mission the  locations of “mass graves”  containing the victims of the alleged chemical attack. Was it enough? But those practical problems were nearly as difficult at the outset of the conflict, and were part of Obama’s calculation to stay out.

In the newly-conquered, government-held city, Fisk spoke on the record with a doctor who experts say likely gave — in order to avoid arrest, torture, or death — a regime-friendly account of events. The U.S., U.K. and France placed blame squarely on the Assad regime and their Russian allies, launching a missile strike targeting chemical weapons facilities in response. Because the OPCW's remit does not include apportioning blame.

McKenzie Jr., the Joint Staff director, with Dana W. Most of the missiles were aimed at the Barzeh facility, where the Western allies believed the Assad government was rebuilding its chemical weapons program. Next came the Syrian army, and then journalists traipsed through, examining the alleged blast sites and interviewing survivors. Smith went to Syria shortly after the government joined the Chemical Weapons Convention to avert U.S. strikes and appease its chief patron, Russia.

Syrian and Iraqi forces have driven IS from nearly all the territory it once held, but the extremists have maintained a presence in the remote desert areas along the border. Skies over Damascus, Syria, erupt with missile fire early April 14 as U.S.-led forces carry out a strike. Kenneth F. On the morning of April 7, the Syrian army, supported by the Syrian and Russian air forces, renewed its assault on Douma.

The US can't fix Syria. But can it do anything to make things even a little bit better?

The latest chemical weapons outrage in Syria and the latest pin prick military response from the U.S. are fading from view already, making little or no difference in a civil war that has killed at least 400,000 people.

The allegations of their existence, however, represents the latest in a series of roadblocks that have been placed in the way of the OPCW inspectors. What else, if anything, should the United States be doing? With that in mind, what can you actually do now? They won’t satisfy the urge for justice, but they might make things a bit better. It was a short walk to Dr Rahaibani. There are previous examples of rescue workers being forced to make statements clearly under coercive circumstances .

Balfour's "promise", Palestinians insist that their rights in Palestine cannot be dismissed. White, assistant to the secretary of defense for public affairs. “They still have ability to conduct attacks,” General McKenzie said of the Syrian government. It has been closely monitored since the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons found precursors for nerve agents there in 2014. There was a direct warning,” said a man who said his sister died in the attack and who spoke on the condition of anonymity out of fear for his safety. “Evidence has been erased.

Pierce did not indicate the British government has any evidence that Russia and Syria are deliberately holding back inspectors or tampering with evidence at the sites. The state SANA news agency says the Army of Islam fighters and their families are leaving the town of Dumayr on Thursday. Editor’s note: Reports of a chemical attack in Syria have generated controversy and conflicting claims about what happened and who was responsible.

Faced with inevitable defeat, the Army of Islam reached out to the Russians to renew negotiations that would lead to surrendering Douma to Syrian government control. Area of atrocity is in lockdown and encircled by Syrian Army, making it completely inaccessible to outside world. Despite this new reality, the Syrian government met with the fact-finding mission to discuss the arrangements needed for the team to travel to Douma to carry out its tasks.

The politicians, military strategists and diplomats all have had their say, and they’ve led us down a dead end. They could show opposition to chemical weapons, and they might avert future use. Mark Porubcansky has been a foreign correspondent and editor for 30 years, serving until recently as foreign editor of the Los Angeles Times. I was with my family in the basement of my home three hundred metres from here on the night but all the doctors know what happened.

Critics Slam Viral Stories Claiming Douma Chemical Attack Victims Died from 'Dust'

Journalists and experts says a widely-shared report about Syria from The Independent bolsters talking points for the Assad regime and the Kremlin.

Image Planning for the strike of 105 missiles on three targets — chemical weapons storage and research facilities near Damascus and Homs — took nearly a full week. Credit Tom Brenner/The New York Times Mr. The other two sites — the Him Shinshar chemical weapons bunker and storage facility in Homs — were severely damaged. There is no evidence.” Days after the Syrian government reestablished its hold on the area, doctors appeared on state media outlets denying the attack had taken place.

There has been a very heavy security presence on the ground ever since the attack and they have been targeting doctors and medics in a very straightforward way. A man pushes a cart past damaged buildings at the besieged town of Douma, Eastern Ghouta, Damascus, Syria March 5, 2018. The April 7 event is still under investigation. However, in answering questions, Lt. If we had that kind of weapon, we would have to carry gas masks.

This prompted the need for Russia and Syria to find alternative routes into and out of the areas in Douma that needed to be inspected and to clear these routes of debris and mines. There is no doubt that the OPCW fact-finding mission has the forensic investigatory capability to detect the presence of chemical agents at the scene of the alleged chemical attack of April 7. So why not ask the philosophers?

Syria is an ally of Russia. People began to arrive here suffering from hypoxia, oxygen loss. This is clearly an example of coercive circumstances because civilians are subject to arbitrary detention. Fetishising a dubious legal process thus becomes a temporising measure that grants the perpetrators of mass crime impunity against the palpable illegality of using chemical weapons. The military intelligence report, put out less than three days after the attack, said the allied airstrikes likely set back Mr.

Image Smoke rising from the Syrian Scientific Research Center, which the Barzeh center is part of, after it was targeted by American, British and French military strikes. In interviews with The Washington Post, residents confirmed that the doctors were present in medical facilities on the night of the alleged chemical attacks. This time around, Syria invited the OPCW inspectors in to investigate the Douma attack.

BEIRUT (AP) - The Latest on the Syria conflict (all times local):

On April 7, the regime decided to again defy the norms of civilized people, showing callous disregard for international law by using chemical weapons to murder women, children and other innocents. So we are very confident that we have significantly crippled Assad’s ability to produce these weapons,” she said. Go to the front and see for yourselves—what are you going to see? Big price … to pay.

This is the truth of the Douma chemical allegations—they can be readily proved or disproved almost immediately upon arrival at the scene by qualified inspectors from the OPCW. After all, this is essentially a moral question — a matter of justice for what appears to be a ghastly war crime. The U.S. approach to Syrian refugees, of which human rights advocates are sharply critical, is a clearer case.

Then someone at the door, a ‘White Helmet’, shouted ‘Gas!”, and a panic began. He was last seen in a video “ confessing ” to the persistent but false propaganda line that the White Helmets stage rescues. Considering the ubiquity of the Iraq analogy, it would seem that the old cliche that generals are always fighting the last war also applies to their critics. Assad’s production of sarin gas. In the end, last weekend’s operation was a textbook example of how the military can carry out a precision strike, seemingly without incident, despite potential complications.

She was previously the Daily Telegraph's Cairo correspondent. The invitation provided the inspectors with the legal basis to enter Syria, but it gives the Syrian government the ability to control their activities. At one medical point, seven casualties were taken away. Western countries say scores of people were gassed to death in the attack. We and our allies find these atrocities inexcusable. Moreover, the implication of the statements made by Secretary Mattis, Gen.

Open area immediately for medical help and verification. All those who were injured in this building were brought to us. Now you can personalize your Truthdig experience. We want to believe that justice means more than a slap on the wrist, and we want to believe that U.S. policy should be about more than naked self-interest. In 2016, the U.S. allowed more than 15,000 Syrians into the country. Iran and Turkey are working out a regional alliance with Russia.