Getting to the bottom of the rebels’ chemical weapons use in Syria

There is little doubt that Syrian rebels, including the Al Qaeda affiliate, the Jabhat Al Nusra, have been in possession of chemical weapons in Syria and have used these weapons against civilians and Syrian government forces.

The U.S. intelligence that Syrian forces used chemical weapons has, according to CBS News, been has been rated as «low to moderate» confidence, hardly believable enough for America to launch an attack on Syria. In July 2013 the Russian government has provided a 100-page report to the United Nations showing that Syrian rebels conducted a chemical attack on Khan al-Assal in northern Syria on March 19. Russian experts concluded that the missile used by the rebels was not a standard issue device found in Syrian arsenals and, therefore, did not originate from the Syrian military. The delivery missile was called «artisan» by the Russian specialists and the chemicals found in soil samples, sarin and diisopropyl fluorophosphate, were reportedly not manufactured in a standard «industrial environment».

The head of the United Nations team investigating chemical weapons use in the Syrian civil war, Carla del Ponte of Switzerland, said in May that there was evidence that Syrian rebels had used sarin nerve gas .

Where could the chemicals have originated?

Defense Threat Reduction Agency and the U.S. Strategic Command Center for Combating Weapons of Mass Destruction, located on Ft. Belvoir, Va. (DTRA photo)
Defense Threat Reduction Agency and the U.S. Strategic Command Center for Combating Weapons of Mass Destruction, located on Ft. Belvoir, Va. (DTRA photo)

One likely source is the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA)–funded Richard G. Lugar Center for Public Health Research outside of Tbilisi, Georgia in the town of Alekseyeva. It is a facility that operates as a civilian biological warfare research facility but which also warehouses stocks of chemical weapons procured from supplies discovered in some of the republics of the former Soviet Union. DTRA is responsible for monitoring the destruction of weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) around the world. However, the Tbilisi facility, also known as the Central Public Health Reference Library, is also heavily-linked to the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute for Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID) in Fort Detrick, Maryland. Russian language U.S. intelligence linguists working for DIA are assigned to the Georgia facility.

Middle East intelligence sources report that the Lugar Center is the likely source for the «artisan» devices and «non-standard» chemical substances, adding that they were transported to Syria by Chechen guerrillas working for the CIA. The Lugar Center devices and substances were also used by rebels against civilians in Ghouta, a Damascus suburb, on August 21. In May, Turkish security forces arrested members of the Al Nusra guerrillas near the Turkish-Syrian border with a cylinder containing sarin nerve gas.

However, there is little veracity to a narrated video that was released on YouTube that is said to show Syrian rebels firing a blue-tipped chemical weapons projectile inside Syria. The video’s narration states that the chemical weapon was:

«Deployed from a research facility controlled by the United States government, the Jack Kemp Research Facility named after an American senator. The weapons closely resemble the weapons that were built by Saddam Hussein.»

The narration implies that the weapon came from stocks transferred to Georgia from Iraq. However, the facility in Georgia is named after Richard Lugar, the former Republican U.S. senator from Indiana. Jack Kemp was a Republican U.S. congressman from New York.

When it was opened in March 2011, the official dedication was attended by Andrew Weber, the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical Defense Programs and U.S. ambassador to Tbilisi John Bass. No stranger to covert operations, Bass served as a special advisor to Vice President Dick Cheney from 2004 to 2005.

Such disinformation and «information operations» are now a hallmark of modern warfare. As many battles take place in cyberspace as on the battlefield.

Oddly, the initial cost for the facility was $15 million. However, the overall cost skyrocketed to $100 million with no reasonable explanation. The head of the facility is a former chief of Georgia’s Foreign Intelligence Service, which maintains close links to the CIA and Mossad. Requests for visits to the site by government officials of Iran, Azerbaijan, Russia, and Armenia have all been turned down by Georgia.

Ever since Georgian intelligence elements favorable to the more Russian-friendly Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanashvili revealed the connections between the late alleged Boston Marathon bomber, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, and the CIA-linked Jamestown Foundation and the training of Dagestani and Chechen operatives, as well as Tsarnaev, at seminars in 2012 co-sponsored by Ilia State University in Tbilisi, Georgian intelligence has been a wellspring of information on CIA and Mossad activities in the Caucasus and surrounding areas. The deal with DTRA and DIA on the Lugar Center involved the former government that was loyal to pro-U.S. and pro-Israeli President Mikheil Saakashvili.

However, a poorly-sourced video claiming the chemical weapons originated at the «Jack Kemp Research Facility» named for a U.S. senator. Such major errors are always the sign of a disinformation campaign.

There is stronger evidence that Syrian rebels used chemical weapons in Syria as a way to prod the United States into attacking Syria than in the «low to moderate» confidence intelligence proffered by the U.S. intelligence community. A report by two Middle East-based journalists, Yahya Ababneh, a Jordanian freelancer and Dale Gavlak, a stringer for the Associated Press, places blame on the rebels for launching chemical attacks based on the rebels’ own admission. The rebels also claim that it was Saudi Prince Bandar bin Sultan, the chief of Saudi intelligence who arranged for the provision of the sarin nerve gas to the rebels.

Director General of Saudi Intelligence Agency Prince Bandar bin Sultan
Director General of Saudi Intelligence Agency Prince Bandar bin Sultan

Bandar has never hesitated to use false flag terrorism to advance his goals, along with those of the United States and Israel. While he was ambassador to the United States, Bandar’s fingerprints were found all over the financing, mainly through the Bush family-connected Riggs Bank of Washington, of the hijacker «patsies» who were blamed for carrying out the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. A Senate Intelligence Committee report on 9/11 saw 25 pages redacted by the Bush administration because it tied Bandar directly to the 9/11 attacks. Recently, Bandar was in Moscow where he offered to give his Al Qaeda units a «stand down» order to not attack the Sochi Winter Olympics if Russia would simply abandon its support for the Bashar al Assad government in Damascus. There is little doubt that Bandar would have been involved in staging a series of false flag terrorist attacks in Syria to blame the Syrian government regardless if children were killed in the attack. A number of children of all ages were killed in the 9/11 attacks.  A former U.S. senator who knows what is in the missing 25 pages about Saudi Arabia, Bandar, and 9/11 is afraid to discuss it openly because he fears for his safety from a Saudi- and/or CIA-sponsored «hit» squad.

Source: Strategic Culture Foundation

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