Congress Votes To Fight ISIS By Funding ISIS To Fight Assad
On September 17, 2014, the United States House of Representatives voted to approve the White House plan to arm and train the alleged “moderate” Syrian rebels. The vote was 273-156 in favor of the $500 million plan. Of course, the bill in question was actually an amendment that was cynically attached to a bill designed to continue funding for the federal government in the short-term, ensuring maximum support from members of the House.
Then, on Thursday September 19, the U.S. Senate followed suit by approving the plan as well. The support for the plan in the Senate was, as expected, bipartisan with members such as Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, John McCain, John Boehner, and Lindsey Graham voting “Yes” on the bill.
The Obama administration reiterated that it was neither asking for permission nor for a new authorization to use military force. The White House asserts that it has all the authority it needs to achieve its goals under the authorizations to use military force that were approved after the 9/11 attacks and in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq in 2003.
Essentially, as Obama stated in his address to the American people on September 10, the consultation of Congress was a mere formality. The plan to aid the “moderate rebels” fighting against Assad and engage in airstrikes against the secular government was going ahead regardless of the decision by Congress.
Much like the decision to invade Afghanistan and Iraq as well as passing the PATRIOT ACT, and other Constitution-shredding legislation, Congress was convinced to support the plan both because their handlers directed them to do so or because the risk of revealing themselves as completely irrelevant was too damaging to undertake.
Yet, while the amendment was sold to the American people and even members of Congress as Obama’s plan to “detect and degrade” ISIS, the reality is that the plan is nothing more than a plan to detect and destroy the Syrian government to benefit of ISIS and other fundamentalist groups that the United States has created, funded, trained, and directed since the very beginning of the Syrian crisis.
Even Congressman Justin Amash was able to recognize the fact that this new amendment was a clever disguise for a war on the secular government of Syria with no options off the table, including the use of ground troops.
In his own statement announcing his opposition to the amendment, Amash stated,
Today’s amendment ostensibly is aimed at destroying ISIS—yet you’d hardly know it from reading the amendment’s text. The world has witnessed with horror the evil of ISIS: the public beheading of innocents, the killing of Christians, Muslims, and others.
The amendment’s focus—arming groups fighting the Assad government in Syria—has little to do with defeating ISIS. The mission that the amendment advances plainly isn’t the defeat of ISIS; it’s the defeat of Assad.
The Obama administration has tried to rally support for U.S. involvement in the Syrian civil war by implying that our help would be at arm’s length. The amendment Congress will vote on broadly authorizes “assistance” to groups in Syria. It does not specify what types of weapons our government will give the groups. It does not prohibit boots on the ground. (The amendment is silent on the president’s power to order our troops to fight in the civil war; it states only that Congress doesn’t provide “specific statutory authorization” for such escalation.) It does not state the financial cost of the war.
If the Syrian groups that are “appropriately vetted” (the amendment’s language) succeed and oust Assad, what would result? Would the groups assemble a coalition government of anti-Assad fighters, and would that coalition include ISIS? What would happen to the Alawites and Christians who stood with Assad? To what extent would the U.S. government be obligated to occupy Syria to rebuild the government? If each of the groups went its own way, would Syria’s territory be broken apart, and if so, would ISIS control one of the resulting countries?
While Amash was correct to suggest that Congress should have opposed the amendment and that the amendment was actually a plan for an assault against the Syrian government as well as the fact that that anarchy, chaos, and unspeakable violence will reign supreme in Syria if the “appropriately vetted” groups managed to gain control of the country, Amash does miss part of the point.
The truth is not that “we don’t know much about the groups we are funding in Syria.” The truth is that “we” know full well that they are ISIS/Al-Qaeda terrorists, with only an occasional name change and branch off due to Western political motives or internal squabbling. That has been and still is the whole point.
There never were any moderates to support in Syria to begin with.
There Are No Moderate Syrian Rebels
As Tony Cartalucci wrote in his article, “In Syria, There Are No Moderates,”
. . . . . there were never, nor are there any "moderates" operating in Syria. The West has intentionally armed and funded Al Qaeda and other sectarian extremists since as early as 2007 in preparation for an engineered sectarian bloodbath serving US-Saudi-Israeli interests. This latest bid to portray the terrorists operating along and within Syria's borders as "divided" along extremists/moderate lines is a ploy to justify the continued flow of Western cash and arms into Syria to perpetuate the conflict, as well as create conditions along Syria's borders with which Western partners, Israel, Jordan, and Turkey, can justify direct military intervention.
Indeed, even the New York Times has been forced to admit that there are, as Cartalucci expertly argues in his article, no moderates in the ranks of the Syrian death squads. As Ben Hubbard wrote in April, 2013,
In Syria’s largest city, Aleppo, rebels aligned with Al Qaeda control the power plant, run the bakeries and head a court that applies Islamic law. Elsewhere, they have seized government oil fields, put employees back to work and now profit from the crude they produce.
Across Syria, rebel-held areas are dotted with Islamic courts staffed by lawyers and clerics, and by fighting brigades led by extremists. Even the Supreme Military Council, the umbrella rebel organization whose formation the West had hoped would sideline radical groups, is stocked with commanders who want to infuse Islamic law into a future Syrian government.
Nowhere in rebel-controlled Syria is there a secular fighting force to speak of. [emphasis added]
Even one of the FSA commanders, Bassel Idriss, recently admitted to openly collaborating with ISIS and al-Nusra, revealing yet another example of the fact that the “moderate rebels” are not moderate at all.
In an interview with the Daily Star of Lebanon, Idriss stated “We are collaborating with the Islamic State and the Nusra Front by attacking the Syrian Army’s gatherings in . . . Qalamoun . . . . Let’s face it: The Nusra Front is the biggest power present right now in Qalamoun and we as FSA would collaborate on any mission they launch as long as it coincides with our values.”
Idriss also admitted that many FSA fighters had pledged allegiance to ISIS. He said, “[ISIS] wanted to enhance its presence in the Western Qalamoun area. After the fall of Yabroud and the FSA’s retreat into the hills [around Arsal], many units pledged allegiance [to ISIS]”.
Abu Fidaa, a retired Syrian Army Colonel who is now a part of the Revolutionary Council in the Qalamoun, corroborated Idrisss’ statements by saying that “A very large number of FSA members [in Arsal] have joined ISIS and Nusra. In the end, people want to eat, they want to live, and the Islamic State has everything.”
Not only the FSA, but also the Syrian Revolutionary Front has also openly admitted to working with Nusra and al-Qaeda. The leader of the SRF, Jamaal Maarouf admitted that his brigades coordinate with Nusra and al-Qaeda regularly.
ISIS Is Controlled By The U.S. And NATO
It is important to point out that the Islamic State is not some shadowy force that emerged from the caves of Afghanistan to form an effective military force that is funded by Twitter donations and murky secretive finance deals. IS is entirely the creation of NATO and the West and it remains in control of the organization.
As Tony Cartalucci writes in his article “Implausible Deniability: West’s ISIS Terror Hordes In Iraq,”
Beginning in 2011 - and actually even as early as 2007 - the United States has been arming, funding, and supporting the Muslim Brotherhood and a myriad of armed terrorist organizations to overthrow the government of Syria, fight Hezbollah in Lebanon, and undermine the power and influence of Iran, which of course includes any other government or group in the MENA region friendly toward Tehran.
Billions in cash have been funneled into the hands of terrorist groups including Al Nusra, Al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI), and what is now being called "Islamic State in Iraq and Syria" or ISIS. One can see clearly by any map of ISIS held territory that it butts up directly against Turkey's borders with defined corridors ISIS uses to invade southward - this is because it is precisely from NATO territory this terrorist scourge originated.
ISIS was harbored on NATO territory, armed and funded by US CIA agents with cash and weapons brought in from the Saudis, Qataris, and NATO members themselves. The "non-lethal aid" the US and British sent including the vehicles we now see ISIS driving around in.
They didn't "take" this gear from "moderates." There were never any moderates to begin with. The deadly sectarian genocide we now see unfolding was long ago predicted by those in the Pentagon - current and former officials - interviewed in 2007 by Pulitzer Prize-winning veteran journalist Seymour Hersh. Hersh's 9-page 2007 report, "The Redirection" states explicitly:
To undermine Iran, which is predominantly Shiite, the Bush Administration has decided, in effect, to reconfigure its priorities in the Middle East. In Lebanon, the Administration has cooperated with Saudi Arabia’s government, which is Sunni, in clandestine operations that are intended to weaken Hezbollah, the Shiite organization that is backed by Iran. The U.S. has also taken part in clandestine operations aimed at Iran and its ally Syria. A by-product of these activities has been the bolstering of Sunni extremist groups that espouse a militant vision of Islam and are hostile to America and sympathetic to Al Qaeda.
"Extremist groups that espouse a militant vision of Islam" and are "sympathetic to Al Qaeda" - is a verbatim definition of what ISIS is today. Clearly the words of Hersh were as prophetic as they were factually informed, grounded in the reality of a regional conflict already engineered and taking shape as early as 2007. Hersh's report would also forewarn the sectarian nature of the coming conflict, and in particular mention the region's Christians who were admittedly being protected by Hezbollah.
While Hersh’s report was written in 2007, knowledge of the plan to use death squads to target Middle Eastern countries, particularly Syria, had been reported on even as far back as 2005 by Michael Hirsh and John Barry for Newsweek in an article entitled “The Salvador Option.”
Regardless, Cartalucci states in a separate article, “NATO’s Terror Hordes In Iraq A Pretext For Syria Invasion,”
In actuality, ISIS is the product of a joint NATO-GCC [Gulf Cooperation Council] conspiracy stretching back as far as 2007 where US-Saudi policymakers sought to ignite a region-wide sectarian war to purge the Middle East of Iran's arch of influence stretching from its borders, across Syria and Iraq, and as far west as Lebanon and the coast of the Mediterranean. ISIS has been harbored, trained, armed, and extensively funded by a coalition of NATO and Persian Gulf states within Turkey's (NATO territory) borders and has launched invasions into northern Syria with, at times, both Turkish artillery and air cover. The most recent example of this was the cross-border invasion by Al Qaeda into Kasab village, Latikia province in northwest Syria.
Cartalucci is referring to a cross-border invasion that was coordinated with NATO, Turkey, Israel, and the death squads where Israel acted as air force cover while Turkey facilitated the death squad invasion from inside its own borders.
Keep in mind also that, prior to the rapid appearance and seizure of territory by ISIS in Syria and Iraq, European media outlets like Der Spiegel reported that hundreds of fighters were being trained in Jordan by Western intelligence and military personnel for the purpose of deployment in Syria to fight against Assad. The numbers were said to be expected to reach about 10,000 fighters when the reports were issued in March, 2013. Although Western and European media outlets would try to spin the operation as the training of “moderate rebels,” subsequent reports revealed that these fighters were actually ISIS fighters.
Western media outlets have also gone to great lengths to spin the fact that ISIS is operating in both Syria and Iraq with an alarming number of American weapons and equipment. As Business Insider stated, “The report [study by the London-based small arms research organization Conflict Armament Research] said the jihadists disposed of ‘significant quantities’ of US-made small arms including M16 assault rifles and included photos showing the markings ‘Property of US Govt.’” The article also acknowledged that a large number of the weapons used by ISIS were provided by Saudi Arabia, a close American ally.
ISIS Attack On Taqba Airbase – The Precursor To A NATO Attack On Syria
Keeping in mind that ISIS is controlled and directed by NATO and Western intelligence, the fact that the death squads have recently focused on the Taqba Airbase in Raqqa province is significant. Particularly when viewed in context of the recent “debate” taking place in front of the American public by the Obama administration on whether or not to engage in targeted airstrikes inside Syria.
For those who may not see the pattern – while the United States and NATO deliberated engaging in targeted airstrikes in Syria and the Syrian government subsequently states its opposition to those attacks and its intentions to shoot down the planes delivering those strikes if they do not coordinate with the Syrian government, death squads have effectively eliminated the air defense capability of the Syrian government in the east of the country.
After all, the Pentagon even stated that one of the biggest threats to an airstrike operation in Syria is the Syrian government’s air defenses. Thanks to ISIS, those air defenses no longer exist in the east of Syria.
This was the end game of the ISIS battle to take over Taqba from the start – eliminate air defenses so that the NATO powers can launch airstrikes against the Syrian military and thus freeing up a launching pad for the terrorists to conduct attacks even deeper into Syria.
Even as the U.S. House was debating whether or not to pass token legislation to passively allow the Obama administration to perpetrate yet another foreign war against a sovereign nation that poses no threat to the United States, rabid warmonger John McCain was grilling Secretary of State John Kerry in what amounted to nothing more than some mildly entertaining D.C. theatre.
McCain grilled Kerry on the reason why the United States is not engaging in airstrikes against Assad’s air defenses as well as a full-scale ground invasion. Attempting to somehow paint Assad as worse than ISIS, McCain stated,
I think at least we owe the Free Syrian Army, negate the air attacks that they will be subjected to when they finish their training and equipping, and go into the fight. So why is it that we won’t at least news release Bashar al Assad’s air activity which has slaughtered thousands and thousands and thousands, 192,000 dead, 3 million refugees, and we’re not going to do anything about Assad’s air capabilities? And finally, ISIL first, that’s what you’re telling these young men who really view Assad as the one who has slaughtered their family members. Not ISIL. As bad as ISIL is.
McCain’s position is not surprising considering the fact that he apparently has a close relationship with al-Qaeda, ISIS, and its affiliates. After all, it was McCain who was photographed in a meeting with Salem Idriss, the leader of the Free Syrian Army and Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the head of Al-Qaeda in Iraq and ISIS.
Remember also that McCain was photographed cavorting around with Abu Bakr, the “moderate rebel” who was seen cutting out a Syrian soldier’s heart and eating it for the camera.
ISIS IS Al-Qaeda
It is important to remember that the so-called leader of ISIS is Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. As Voltaire Net describes Baghdadi,
Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is an Iraqi who joined Al-Qaeda to fight against President Saddam Hussein. During the U.S. invasion, he distinguished himself by engaging in several actions against Shiites and Christians (including the taking of the Baghdad Cathedral) and by ushering in an Islamist reign of terror (he presided over an Islamic court which sentenced many Iraqis to be slaughtered in public). After the departure of Paul Bremer III, al-Baghdadi was arrested and incarcerated at Camp Bucca from 2005 to 2009. This period saw the dissolution of Al-Qaeda in Iraq, whose fighters merged into a group of tribal resistance, the Islamic Emirate of Iraq.
On 16 May 2010, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was named emir of the IEI, which was in the process of disintegration. After the departure of U.S. troops, he staged operations against the government al-Maliki, accused of being at the service of Iran. In 2013, after vowing allegiance to Al-Qaeda, he took off with his group to continue the jihad in Syria, rebaptizing it Islamic Emirate of Iraq and the Levant. In doing so, he challenged the privileges that Ayman al-Zawahiri had previously granted, on behalf of Al-Qaeda, to the Al-Nusra Front in Syria, which was originally nothing more than an extension of the ISI.
Regardless, false assumptions surrounding the true leadership of ISIS would be called into question in January of 2014 when Al-Arabiya, a Saudi-owned and operated news agency, published an article as well as a video of an interrogation of an ISIS fighter who had been captured while operating inside Syria.
When asked why ISIS was following the movement of the Free Syrian Army and who had given him the orders to do so, the fighter stated that he did not know why he was ordered to monitor the FSA’s movement but that the orders had come from Abu Faisal, also known as Prince Abdul Rachman al-Faisal of the Saudi Royal Family.
An excerpt from the relevant section of the interrogation reads as follows:
Interrogator: Why do you (ISIS) monitor the movement of the Free Syrian Army?
ISIS Detainee: I don’t know exactly why but we received orders from ISIS command.
Interrogator: Who among ISIS gave the orders?
ISIS Detainee: Prince Abdul Rachman al-Faisal, who is also known as Abu Faisal.
Such revelations, of course, will only be shocking news to those who have been unaware of the levels to which the Saudis have been involved with the funding, training, and directing of death squad forces deployed in Syria. Indeed, the Saudis have even openly admitted to the Russian government that they do, in fact, a number of varied terrorist organizations across the world.
Even tired mainstream media organizations such as Newsweek (aka The Daily Beast) can no longer ignore the facts surrounding the Saudis’ involvement with the organization of terrorist groups across the world.
Note also that Voltaire Net describes al-Nusra, a documented al-Qaeda connected group, as merely an extension of the IEI (Islamic Emirate of Iraq) which itself was nothing more than a version of Al-Qaeda In Iraq. Thus, from Al-Qaeda in Iraq, came the IEI, which then became the Islamic Emirate of Iraq and the Levant. IEIL then became ISIS/ISIL which is now often referred to as IS.
In other words, Nusra=Al-Qaeda-IEI=IEIL=ISIL=ISIS=IS.
With the information presented above regarding the nature of the Free Syrian Army and the so-called “moderate rebels,” it would be entirely fair to add these “moderate” groups to the list as well.
Although too lengthy of a study to be presented in this article, it is important to point out that al-Qaeda is entirely a creation of the West, created for the purpose of drawing the Soviets into Afghanistan in the 1970s and a host of other geopolitical goals in the middle east and around the world, 9/11 being the most memorable instance of Western intelligence al-Qaeda mobilization.
While the White House’s recent “plan” to “detect and degrade” ISIS is simply more of the same rhetoric covering the fact that NATO has been funding, arming, training, and directing ISIS and related organizations for the purpose of overthrowing Assad.