and video of five-year-old Omran Daqneesh have rapidly become
ubiquitous in the media in the US and Western Europe after being
distributed by a group aligned with the CIA-backed Islamist “rebels”
toddler is shown sitting somewhat dazed in the orange seat of a new
and well-equipped ambulance, his face covered in dust and tinged with
what appears to be dried blood from what was reportedly a cut to his
scalp. Video shows him waiting unattended as a number of
photographers and videographers record his image to be broadcast
around the world. Clearly, those in charge sensed that the boy, with
a mop of hair covering his brow and a cartoon t-shirt, provided a
proclaimed the child “the face of Syria’s civil war,” while the
anchor-woman theatrically burst into tears recounting his story. The
New York Timescalled him “a symbol of Aleppo’s suffering,”
while USA Today published a short editor’s note reading, “This
Syrian boy is Omran. Will you pay attention now?”
direct in its approach was the British daily Telegraph, which
headlined an article: “For the sake of Aleppo’s children, we must
try again to impose a no-fly zone in Syria.”
the most obscene pieces was one penned, predictably, by Nicholas
Kristof of the New York Times, who conflated the plight of Syria’s
children with the death of his family dog. He went on to invoke a
statement by Secretary of State John Kerry that ISIS is engaged in
genocide as a rationale for the US to launch cruise missile attacks
on the Syrian government, which is fighting ISIS. The effort to
obliterate rational thought in the name of human rights is stunning.
we are witnessing is a carefully orchestrated war propaganda
campaign, designed to appeal to the humanitarian sentiments of the
population in order to corral it behind a new escalation of
imperialist violence in the Middle East. Whether the incident with
Omran was itself staged by the “rebels” and their CIA handlers,
or Washington and the corporate media are cynically exploiting the
real suffering of an innocent child, is an open question.
is indisputable is that the feigned concern over this one child is
being foisted upon the public with very definite and undeclared
political and geo-strategic motives that have nothing to do with
protecting the lives of innocent children. They have died by the
hundreds of thousands over the last quarter century of US-led
invasions, bombings and proxy wars throughout the region.
image of Omran was chosen because it comes from the eastern sector of
Aleppo, where roughly one-sixth of the northern Syrian city’s
population lives under the domination of US-backed Islamist militias.
The most important of these is the Fateh al-Sham Front, which, until
last month, called itself the al-Nusra Front and was Al Qaeda’s
designated affiliate in Syria.
children killed by the Al Qaeda militia’s “hell cannons,” fired
indiscriminately into the government-controlled neighborhoods of
western Aleppo, do not have the same effect on the tear ducts of
newspaper editorialists and media talking heads. Nor, for that
matter, do the imagescoming out of Yemen of children slaughtered by
Saudi airstrikes carried out with US-supplied bombs and the
Pentagon’s indispensable logistical support. The horrific video of
US-backed “moderate” Syrian “rebels” sawing off the head of a
ten-year-old Palestinian boy likewise provoked no significant
driving forces underlying the renewed propaganda campaign are
two-fold. In the first and most immediate instance, the “rebel”
offensive—armed and funded by the US and its regional allies—to
break the government siege of eastern Aleppo and intensify the war
against the civilian population in the west of the city has stalled,
and the Syrian army, backed by Russian air power, is again making
significant gains on the ground. Hence the renewed demands for an
far-reaching in its implications is the development of closer
collaboration between Russia, Iran, China and Turkey in relation to
the five-year-old war for regime-change in Syria. Iran has over the
past week allowed Russia to use Iranian bases to attack Syrian
targets, while Beijing has announced an increase in military aid to
Damascus. Meanwhile, in the wake of last month’s abortive US-backed
military coup, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has
sought a rapprochement with both Moscow and Tehran.
views this potential alliance with increasing disquiet, seeing it as
an impediment to its military drive to assert US hegemony over the
Middle East and its vast energy reserves. It cannot accept such a
challenge and will, inevitably, prepare a military response. It is to
this end that the “humanitarian” propaganda campaign to “save
the children” of Syria—and rescue Washington’s Al Qaeda-linked
proxies in the bargain—has been mounted.
methods employed in this campaign are well-worn to say the least.
Twenty-five years ago, the first Gulf War against Iraq was prepared
with a chilling tale, told to the US Congress, of invading Iraqi
troops stealing incubators from Kuwaiti hospitals and leaving babies
to die. The supposed eyewitness to this atrocity, a woman identified
as a nurse, was subsequently exposed as the daughter of the Kuwaiti
ambassador and a member of the emirate’s royal family. The entire
story was a propaganda hoax.
the years that followed, the US imposed punishing sanctions on Iraq
that claimed the lives of half a million Iraqi children, about which
then-US ambassador to the UN Madeleine Albright infamously declared,
“The price was worth it.” Subsequent US wars in Afghanistan,
Iraq, Libya and Syria have killed hundreds of thousands more.
reviewing these 25 years of violence and bloodshed, the newly
published book A Quarter Century of War: The US Drive for Global
Hegemony, 1990-2016 by David North states:
scope of military operations continuously widened. New wars were
started while the old ones continued. The cynical invocation of human
rights was used to wage war against Libya and overthrow the regime of
Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. The same hypocritical pretext was employed
to organize a proxy war in Syria. The consequences of these crimes,
in terms of human lives and suffering, are incalculable.
last quarter century of US-instigated wars must be studied as a chain
of interconnected events. The strategic logic of the US drive for
global hegemony extends beyond the neocolonial operations in the
Middle East and Africa. The ongoing regional wars are component
elements of the rapidly escalating confrontation of the United States
with Russia and China.
flood of war propaganda presaging an imminent escalation of the US
intervention in Syria threatens to hasten such a confrontation, and
with it, the real danger of a global nuclear war.