Skip to main content

How a network of UK intel-linked operatives helped sell every alleged Syrian chemical weapons attack

While Western media covers up their credibility issues, these pseudo-experts and spooks have helped drive the dirty war on Syria. 
 
by Kit Klarenberg
 
Part 6 - ‘Ready for Trial’: UK information warriors move from warfare to lawfare
 
The clear role of British intelligence in forging material has greatly influenced global media coverage. As a result, it has driven public support for regime change across the West, corrupted official investigations by international bodies, and helped trigger destructive military interventions.

The same bogus findings cooked up by the UK’s information warriors may be used in future kangaroo prosecutions of Syrian officials for war crimes, thus reinforcing the perception that the West’s long-running dirty war on Damascus was a righteous mission.

The shift in objective from warfare to lawfare was made clear by Emma Winberg in June 2018, at an event on the subject of “archiving atrocities” hosted by NATO’s unofficial think tank in Washington, The Atlantic Council.

We’re in a phase of the conflict where we’re having to look ahead and plan for the next phase, where it’s less about advocacy to act on Syria, and instead how we best preserve what we do have, how we capture that in the most meaningful and effective way, that helps with future documentation and processes,” she said.

However, these efforts date back to the very beginning of the crisis. Leaked documents reveal that in 2011, the UK intelligence contractor, ARK, collaborated with a shadowy consultancy firm called Tsamota to “extract contemporaneous documentation from the conflict zone,” thus “[ensuring] that when the conflict ends, the raw material of a post-conflict war crimes process is ready for trial, in turn providing a key contribution to truth telling, reconciliation and the future of Syria.

To this end, an endeavor created by Tsamota and called Commission for International Justice and Accountability (CIJA) has collected thousands of kilos of documentation from abandoned government buildings in opposition-occupied areas of the country. As documented by Grayzone in 2019, these operations necessitated CIJA securing protection and assistance from numerous Islamist militias active in these areas, including the al-Qaeda affiliate, Jabhat al-Nusra.

While the organization has received tens of millions in funding from the governments of Canada, Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, Norway, UK, and US for its efforts, few indictments have followed. A rare exception was the April 2020 Koblenz trial in Germany, in which two former Syrian security service officers who defected in 2012, were prosecuted for torture. One willingly provided their Western counterparts with sensitive information, while the other became a member of the opposition delegation.

A defendant has since been found guilty of aiding and abetting crimes against humanity, and received a somewhat paltry four-and-a-half years in prison. His conviction was heavily dependent on documents recording the meetings and directives of the “Central Crisis Management Cell,” established by the Syrian government in late March 2011 in response to the uprising.

Notably, the files record that lethal attacks on Syrian security forces began almost immediately after the allegedly peaceful protests began. However, soldiers were under clear orders from the inception to “counter with weapons” only those “who carry weapons against the state,” while guaranteeing “civilians are not harmed.” 

Ensure that no drop of blood is shed when confronting and dispersing peaceful demonstrations,” an August 2011 directive unequivocally stated.

The question of where the vast sums CIJA received ultimately ended up is a particularly urgent one given that the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) has formally accused it of fraud and “submission of false documents, irregular invoicing, and profiteering.

OLAF made the allegation in relation to a project delivered by CIJA under the EU’s “Rule of Law” project in Syria, and recommended that authorities in the UK, Netherlands, and Belgium prosecute the group.

Seated on the board of CIJA is Toby Cadman, a lawyer who “[advises] clients how best to identify, approach and influence the key decision makers of Westminster, Washington DC, Brussels and further afield.” In 2016, he founded “international justice chambers” Guernica 37, which counts UK information warrior Emma Winberg among its staff.

That same year, Cadman authored an op-ed for the Huffington Post announcing that he had joined a “non-profit group that brings together doctors, military and humanitarian specialists and lawyers,” Medics Under Fire – the original name of de Bretton-Gordon’s fictional Doctors Under Fire.

Prosecutions in absentia for staged chemical weapons attacks could be in the offing in future.

In October 2020, The Grayzone’s Aaron Maté caught US and UK-government funded propaganda platform Bellingcat publishing a bogus draft letter to an OPCW whistleblower that was never sent.

In the aftermath of the debacle, Chris York, a former Huffington Post journalist with a history of fanatically smearing the Working Group on Syria, Propaganda, and Media, attempted to defend the letter’s authenticity in private communications with this journalist. 

In the process, he made an intriguing disclosure.

There’s a whole bunch of stuff about Douma that isn’t public yet because it would put any future investigations and possible criminal trials in jeopardy,” York claimed.

He may have been bluffing, attempting to legitimize an obvious con job he himself had fallen for good and proper months earlier, and been on the verge of publishing. But there’s also the chance York knows something the rest of us do not.

***

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Τραγωδία στο Μάτι και δεξιό παρακράτος: νέα στοιχεία για πιθανή επιχείρηση προβοκάτσιας

globinfo freexchange     Όπως είχαμε επισημάνει ήδη από τον Σεπτέμβριο του 19, η εγχώρια μιντιακή χούντα και οι καθεστωτικές μαριονέτες της Μητσοτακικής δεξιάς είχαν επιλέξει τελικά να ρίξουν το μεγαλύτερο βάρος της αντι-ΣΥΡΙΖΑ προπαγάνδας σε δύο βασικούς πυλώνες: στη συμφωνία των Πρεσπών και στην τραγωδία στο Μάτι.    Όσο περνούσε ο καιρός και αφού κατακάθισε η σκόνη της μιντιακής προπαγάνδας, όλα έδειχναν ότι το σενάριο μιας πιθανής προβοκάτσιας στην υπόθεση "Μάτι" ενορχηστρωμένης από το δεξιό παρακράτος (όσο και αν αυτό φάνταζε εξωφρενικό), δεν θα μπορούσε να αποκλειστεί.   Τα πρώτα ισχυρά σημάδια για την πιθανότητα ενός τέτοιου σεναρίου τα έδωσε το ίδιο το καθεστώς Μητσοτάκη με την επιβράβευση των υπεύθυνων αξιωματικών για τη διαχείριση της φωτιάς στο Μάτι, οι οποίοι πήραν προαγωγή! Κάτι φυσικά που απέκρυψαν επιμελώς όλα τα συστημικά κανάλια της μιντιακής χούντας (στην οποία ανήκει ασφαλώς και η Μητσοτακική ΥΕΝΕΔ) που στηρίζει σύσσωμη το καθεστώς. Πρόσφατα, ήρθαν και νέα

Άλλα δύο χρόνια Μητσοτακικής λαίλαπας ...

globinfo freexchange   Δεν μπορούσαμε να φανταστούμε ότι θα πέφταμε πάλι τόσο μέσα (δυστυχώς) στις προβλέψεις. Αμέσως μετά τις εθνικές εκλογές του 2019, είχαμε γράψει ότι ο "σοφός λαός" δεν είναι και τόσο σοφός. Είτε με την ψήφο του, είτε με την αποχή του, έδωσε το ελεύθερο στη χειρότερη δεξιά της μεταπολίτευσης να σαρώσει σαν 'οδοστρωτήρας' τα πάντα στο πέρασμά της. Μετά από τέσσερα χρόνια νεοφιλελεύθερης λαίλαπας, το τοπίο καταστροφής θα έχει κάνει τη χώρα κυριολεκτικά αγνώριστη.  Και είναι πραγματικά απίστευτο ότι, κάθε μέρα που περνάει, το καθεστώς Μητσοτάκη μοιάζει σαν να έχει βαλθεί να μας επιβεβαιώνει όλο και περισσότερο. Μετά το επιτελικό μπάχαλο στη διαχείριση της πανδημίας και το γεγονός ότι τα εκτελεστικά όργανα του αδίστακτου Μητσοτακικού καθεστώτος έσπευσαν να εκμεταλλευτούν την συγκυρία για να περάσουν ότι πιο αντιλαϊκό και αντιεργατικό μέτρο μπορούσαν να περάσουν, ήρθαν οι ασύλληπτες καταστροφές με τις πυρκαγιές σε Βόρεια Εύβοια, Βαρυμπόμπη και αλλού.

How the Americans created the al-Qaeda myth prior to 9/11 attacks in order to invade Afghanistan and Iraq

globinfo freexchange   In his documentary The Power Of Nightmares , Adam Curtis gives the details of how the Americans essentially invented al-Qaeda and how the neocons re-emerged after the 9/11 attacks to exploit this myth.   The result was the devastating wars in Afghanistan and Iraq:   For beyond his own small group, Bin Laden had no formal organization. Until the Americans invented one for him. In January 2001, a trial began in a Manhattan courtroom of four men accused of the embassy bombings in east Africa. But the Americans had also decided to prosecute Bin Laden in his absence. But to do this under American law, the prosecutors needed evidence of a criminal organization because, as with the Mafia, that would allow them to prosecute the head of the organization, even if he could not be linked directly to the crime. And the evidence for that organization was provided for them by an ex-associate of Bin Laden's called Jamal Al-Fadl.   The picture Al-Fadl drew for the Americans

US imperialists activate their ISIS proxies to alter the nature of war in Afghanistan

globinfo freexchange   It took only a few days for the US declining empire to return to Afghanistan after its disorderly retreat under Biden's order. And what a surprise: another drone strike, another murder of civilians - kids among them, another war crime. That is, the routine outcome of every US military intervention the last decades. It was a matter of time before "uncle Joe" bent to the enormous pressure by the sinister war machine. The combined, stormy attack by the corporate media and the deep state against his decision to withdraw the US forces from Afghanistan, created a suffocating situation. And while the Western propaganda machine announced the definite withdrawal of the US forces from the Afghan soil - after the new US war crime - the pressure and harsh criticism on Biden never ended. On the contrary, it seems that the criticism against his decision to withdraw all US forces is getting more and more intensive. The Western propaganda machine not only had nothi

John Pilger on Afghanistan: US military a killing machine & how the Taliban went from ally to enemy

Going Underground Legendary journalist and filmmaker John Pilger on the takeover of the Taliban in Afghanistan. He calls the US military a killing machine and discusses why the Afghanistan War must be viewed through the lens of Western imperialism, the scale of civilian casualties and destruction of Afghanistan by NATO countries, how the US created today’s situation by supporting Afghan jihadist forces against the Soviet Union throughout the Cold War, the social progress and progressive reform lost to history with the fall of the Soviet-backed PDPA government in Afghanistan. Pilger also discusses the anniversary of the Pinochet coup in Chile and the trial of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. 

Chris Hedges & Richard Wolff: Have Bernie, the Squad, & the institutional Left failed us?

Bad Faith   Marxist economist Richard Wolff and Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and theologian Chris Hedges weigh in on whether there is a moral maximum income, by what standard we should judge leftists who become wealthy in the course of their advocacy, and why the left is so easily distracted by superficial internecine battles, like the one over Hasan Piker's house, during this time of great crisis.    They then move on to discuss more substantive divides on the left, and whether the so-called "institutional left's" theory of power is, in fact, demobilizing people at the very moment they should act. It's a banger. 

Μπλέξαμε άσχημα ...

globinfo freexchange   Όλα δείχνουν ότι οι "άριστοι" του Μητσοτακοκαθεστώτος τα έχουν κάνει παντού μαντάρα και έχουν βάλει τον αυτόματο πιλότο.   Πώς αλλιώς να εξηγηθεί ότι οι διασωληνωμένοι και οι νεκροί έχουν εξαφανιστεί από τα δελτία προπαγάνδας της μιντιακής χούντας και εν όψει καλοκαιριού, ο περιοδεύων Μητσοτακοθίασος αποφάσισε να ανοίξει τα πάντα; Ξαφνικά είμαστε μια ωραία ατμόσφαιρα και όλοι είναι έτοιμοι για διακοπάρες σε κάποιο νησί.  Μήπως πάει καλά το πρόγραμμα εμβολιασμού, έχουμε χτίσει το πολυπόθητο τείχος ανοσίας και δεν το πήραμε χαμπάρι; Μήπως οι μεταλλάξεις έφυγαν τρομαγμένες μόλις αντίκρισαν τον Μπιλ Κικίλ και τον Νικ Χάρντ του καθεστωτικού θιάσου; Μήπως έβρεξε ξαφνικά ΜΕΘ, κλίνες και προσωπικό και ανάσαναν τα δημόσια νοσοκομεία; Μήπως δεν γίνεται μπάχαλο με τα τεστ και όλα είναι άψογα οργανωμένα; Τίποτα απ'όλα αυτά. Απλώς, έρχονται οι τουρίστες! Και επειδή ο Μητσοτακοθίασος πρέπει να δείξει κάτι για να μη φανεί η παταγώδης αποτυχία σε όλους τους τομείς

Jeremy Corbyn on Afghanistan & preventing the next war

Democracy Now!   Jeremy Corbyn, one of the leading critics of the Afghan War in Britain, on the Taliban takeover in Afghanistan.    He says critics who warned against invading Afghanistan, and later Iraq, have been vindicated, and calls for an official inquiry into the war.    “ It’s horrible to read back to 2001 and 2003 and say all the worst predictions that any of us ever made have all come to pass, ” Corbyn tells Democracy Now!  

US drone killed 10 Afghans including aid worker & 7 kids after water jugs were mistaken as bombs

Democracy Now!   Reporter Matthieu Aikins on how his investigation for The New York Times found an August 29 U.S. drone strike, which the Pentagon claimed targeted a facilitator with the militant group ISIS-K, actually killed 10 Afghan civilians, including seven children and Zemari Ahmadi, an Afghan engineer who had worked since 2006 for an American aid group.  A review of video evidence by the Times shows Zemari loading canisters of water at the charity’s office, after the Pentagon claimed surveillance video showed Zemari loading what they thought were explosives into a car at an unknown compound earlier in the day. “ We put together evidence that showed that what the military interpreted as a series of suspicious moves from the sky was, according to his co-workers and colleagues and video evidence, just an ordinary day for this aid worker, ” says Aikins.

Επιβεβαίωση: Επιχείρηση προβοκάτσιας του δεξιού παρακράτους η τραγωδία στο Μάτι!

globinfo freexchange  Σε προηγούμενο άρθρο στις αρχές Ιουλίου, είχαμε αναφερθεί στους περίφημους διαλόγους με τα "πακιστανικά τηλέφωνα", που προκάλεσαν σάλο. Είχαμε επισημάνει ότι η αδιανόητη απάντηση του επικεφαλής της υπηρεσίας του αεροδρομίου σχετικά με το Μάτι, σχολιάστηκε έντονα μόνο από μερικούς χρήστες στα σόσιαλ μίντια. Ενώ είναι χαρακτηριστικό ότι ορισμένα συστημικά ΜΜΕ απέκρυψαν επιμελώς αυτό το κομμάτι του διαλόγου. Ο επικεφαλής, λοιπόν, φέρεται να λέει: " Σιγά μην μπλέξουμε, οι άλλοι έκαψαν 100 άτομα και πήραν και βαθμό ... " και αναφέρεται προφανώς στους υπεύθυνους αξιωματικούς για τη διαχείριση της φωτιάς στο Μάτι, οι οποίοι πήραν προαγωγή από την κυβέρνηση της ΝΔ.  Συμπεράναμε ότι η ωμή κυνικότητα των διαλόγων και το ότι επιβεβαιώνουν το γεγονός ότι κάποιοι υπεύθυνοι αντί να ξηλωθούν προάγονται (προφανώς επειδή έκαναν τη βρόμικη δουλειά), έχουν έντονη οσμή δεξιού παρακράτους. Ενώ, αναρωτηθήκαμε αν ο εισαγγελέας θα σταθεί (ως οφείλει) και στο κομμάτι