Friday, August 05, 2011
Syria: President Assad declares a multiparty system- and France calls it a ‘provocation’
You can watch me discussing the latest developments in Syria- and why France’s reaction is so extraordinary, on Russia Today here.
Meanwhile, I see that Hillary the Hawk has said that the US believes that over 2,000 people have been killed by the Syrian authorities in recent clashes. While all deaths must be deplored, there’s strong reasons for treating such numbers with a huge barrow-load of salt.
John Pilger writes:
Following the same path as the build-up to the invasion of Iraq, the media coverage in the spring of 1999 was a series of fraudulent justifications, beginning with the then US defence secretary William Cohen's claim that "we've now seen about 100,000 military-aged [Albanian] men missing . . . they may have been murdered". David Scheffer, the then US ambassador-at-large for war crimes, announced that as many as "225,000 ethnic Albanian men aged between 14 and 59" may have been killed
……….One year later, the International War Crimes Tribunal, a body in effect set up by Nato, announced that the final count of bodies found in Kosovo's "mass graves" was 2,788. This included combatants on both sides and Serbs and Roma murdered by the Kosovo Liberation Army. Like Iraq's fabled weapons of mass destruction, the figures used by the US and British governments and echoed by journalists were inventions - along with Serbian "rape camps" and Clinton's and Blair's claims that Nato never deliberately bombed civilians.
The US is not a disinterested party when it comes to Syria, nor was it when it came to events in the Balkans in the late 1990s.
For a view on Syria from someone who has actually been in the country this summer, check out this report.
On July 15, I received news feeds from the AFP announcing a million protestors all over Syria, of which 500,000 in Hama alone.
In Hama however, they could not have been more than 10,000.
This ‘information’ was even more absurd due to the fact that the city of Hama counts only 370,000 inhabitants.