Mattis States “No Evidence” Linking Assad To Chemical Attacks In Syria 3/18/18 by Kaiter Enless

The 2013 and 2017 chemical weapons attacks in Syria have, thus far been unsolved cases. Despite numerous claims that Syrian president Bashar al-Assad was behind the chemical weapons attacks (specifically declaring the banned nerve agent Sarin to be the primary dispensation) no concrete evidence has yet been provided to substantiate these claims. Most of these claims, though highly incendiary upon first coming to light were unfortunately buried beneath the political scandals which followed in swift succession thereafter, from the presidential elections, to Trump’s ascendancy, the numerous political protests concerning freedom of speech, as well as the Nunes memo and Steele dossier. To the public of 2018 the chemical weapons cases were near completely forgot. Nearly.

Recently, General James “Mad Dog” Mattis recently stated, in a public briefing at the pentagon that the US has “no evidence” that Assad was behind the terror attacks of both 2013 and 2017. This flies in the face of everything which Mattis and the Defense Department has previously said concerning the affair. For instance, as early as April, 2017, Mattis himself had stated that there was “no doubt” that President Assad was behind the terror attacks. Mattis’ recent admission also directly contradicts the White House memo which justified the tomahawk missile strike which Trump launched upon the Syrian Shayrat airbase. Mattis’ statement is also congruent with the conclusions reached by various chemical weapons experts such as independent journalist and war reporter, Gareth Porter, who has stated that the war against Assad has “no credibility.” Various other students of the Syrian War and its political implications have come to similar conclusions, such as Hans Blix and Scott Ritter. All of them find the narratives being spun out of the White House and Defense Department dubious at best and outright falsehoods at worse.

It is not at all unreasonable to be trepidatious concerning Assad and his government, but it IS unreasonable to make incendiary accusations concerning a sovereign and lawful leader (regardless of your feelings concerning him) without providing any evidence of those very claims. This, in my opinion, is a most positive development, not only does it prove what I and many others have been saying for sometime, it also markedly dampens potential Syrian military incursions by the US as that would incite a public firestorm the likes of which haven’t been seen since the Vietnam War (and rightly so!). Syria, Russia and Iran are, to those who occupy our halls of power, seen as an evil triad, and to them, we look likewise, vile and domineering. Obviously, both are largely correct and, upon a realization of similarities, it should be hoped that a cooling of relationships can be undertaken akin to the program proposed by the former Iranian president, Mohammad Khatami. This, I would submit, is both the most mutually beneficial and, unfortunately, most unlikely to occur, of all the moves afforded the pieces on the chessboard. Yet every patriotic American who raises their voice against spurious claims and frivolous wars makes that chess move more likely, if only ever so slightly.

 

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Kaiter Enless is a professional writer and NMC columnist who also writes at TLC.