If you live in leftist lalaland and rely on the Obama administration to explain unfolding current events around the globe, the world appears to be a frightening, unpredictable, mysterious swirl of sudden storms of new threats breaking on the horizon. Semantics carries more weight in leftist circles than substance, with political considerations tipping the scales on proclaiming and enforcing the speech code in America. Decades of experience with this tyrannical policing of our language from hyphenated American nomenclature, to more devious castigating former soldiers as potential terrorists, to designating a real terrorist attack on American soil merely a mundane case of workplace violence conditioned Americans to accept parsing to advance the Left’s political agenda. The political right writes scathing commentary about politically correct speech, but the political left controls the media and academia to such an extent that these battles always end with the new politically correct terminology becoming the approved version in American public life.
In Syria, this reclassification process followed President Obama’s fluctuating stance on the ongoing civil war there. As you may recall, President Bashar al Assad went from being Hillary Clinton’s “reformer” in Syria to President Obama’s persona non grata, after declaring Assad used chemical weapons against his own people (before actual investigations were even completed). Thus we went from Kerry flying to Syria in 2009 to meet with his “dear friend” Assad to a rebranded Assad, a threat to humanity in the vein of Hitler, if you listen to Obama spokespeople. In the midst of this Syria policy flip-flop, a cadre of neoconservative mouthpieces, Syrian rebel advocacy lobbyists and Obama sycophants took on the task of selling the solution to the Forlorn Hope that is the Syrian civil war, yes, we were introduced to the Syrian “moderates”, explained to us by Syrian expert par excellence, Elizabeth O’Bagy, who provided both the American public and the Obama White House with her detailed maps of Syrian forces and her smiling assertions that Syrian “moderates” made up the bulk of the Syrian resistance (see LB archives: here, here, here, here).
President Obama makes declarations on world affairs based on personal political expediency, totally devoid of facts and reality, where his minions refer to their “narratives” and worry over the “optics”, like OCD little stage managers in a junior high school play (to go along with junior varsity terrorist threats). Not ones to rest on their laurels, the Obama administration now introduced us to The Khorosan Group in Syria, a brand spanking new terrorist entity. Andrew McCarthy put the kibosh on this latest Obama administration fabrication, bluntly calling the White House on their deception. Mr. McCarthy in “The Khorosan Group Does Not Exist” writes:
“There is a reason that no one had heard of such a group until a nanosecond ago, when the “Khorosan Group” suddenly went from anonymity to the “imminent threat” that became the rationale for an emergency air war there was supposedly no time to ask Congress to authorize.
You haven’t heard of the Khorosan Group because there isn’t one. It is a name the administration came up with, calculating that Khorosan — the –Iranian–Afghan border region — had sufficient connection to jihadist lore that no one would call the president on it.
The “Khorosan Group” is al-Qaeda. It is simply a faction within the global terror network’s Syrian franchise, “Jabhat al-Nusra.” Its leader, Mushin al-Fadhli (believed to have been killed in this week’s U.S.-led air strikes), was an intimate of Ayman al-Zawahiri, the emir of al-Qaeda who dispatched him to the jihad in Syria. Except that if you listen to administration officials long enough, you come away thinking that Zawahiri is not really al-Qaeda, either. Instead, he’s something the administration is at pains to call “core al-Qaeda.””
Now, I want to digress back to the point where Assad went from Hillary’s reformer to Obama’s enemy #1 in Syria. To that end the Obama administration decided that the way forward was to pick a winner in the Syrian civil war, their illusive Syrian “moderates”. Accusations against the Assad regime over chemical weapons attacks hit the news and President Obama publicly declared Assad’s forces as the perpetrator before an actual investigation was conducted. Media hysteria ensued, Obama’s version became the de facto ground truth of the matter, a UN investigation concluded chemical weapons were used, but hedged on assigning blame, but the Obama administration ignored some very serious facts. The following is a list of Nightwatch links for 2012 on the chemical attack reporting and status of fact-finding:
http://www.kforcegov.com/Services/IS/NightWatch/NightWatch_13000199.aspx – read this one carefully!
http://www.kforcegov.com/Services/IS/NightWatch/NightWatch_13000200.aspx – another important report
Thanks to JK’s careful compilations of links, because I am an amateur, with no training in intelligence analysis, but here’s the trend I see in the Nightwatch approach vs the Obama administration – Nightwatch posts information and carefully partitions comments and suppositions from facts. The Obama administration relies on creating “narratives”, then making up lies to bolster the narrative. In these Nightwatch reports it becomes clear that the UN investigation encountered a tampered with site to investigate in 2012 and they found a 330mm rocket body, which the Syrian Army does not use. Here’s a link which does show a country which has a 330mm missile in its arsenal. By 2013, Global Reseach, an independent research and media company in Canada, reported: “Syria: UN Mission Report Confirms that “Opposition” Rebels Used Chemical Weapons against Civilians and Government Forces”.
Seymour Hersh wrote a piece aptly titled, “Whose Sarin?“, stating:
“Barack Obama did not tell the whole story this autumn when he tried to make the case that Bashar al-Assad was responsible for the chemical weapons attack near Damascus on 21 August. In some instances, he omitted important intelligence, and in others he presented assumptions as facts. Most significant, he failed to acknowledge something known to the US intelligence community: that the Syrian army is not the only party in the country’s civil war with access to sarin, the nerve agent that a UN study concluded – without assessing responsibility – had been used in the rocket attack. In the months before the attack, the American intelligence agencies produced a series of highly classified reports, culminating in a formal Operations Order – a planning document that precedes a ground invasion – citing evidence that the al-Nusra Front, a jihadi group affiliated with al-Qaida, had mastered the mechanics of creating sarin and was capable of manufacturing it in quantity. When the attack occurred al-Nusra should have been a suspect, but the administration cherry-picked intelligence to justify a strike against Assad.”
At the same time the president was selling us the “moderates” trope put forth by O’Bagy as the Syrian resistance mouthpiece, other reports were painting a very different picture of the Syrian resistance, “Syria: nearly half rebel fighters are jihadists or hardline Islamists, says IHS Jane’s report”. O’Bagy vs IHS Jane’s, humm, well since I have been trusting Jane’s for decades and O’Bagy was serving as the State Department Syria subject matter expert at the same time she was serving as the political director for a pro-Syrian resistance lobbying group, all while pretending to possess a doctorate from Georgetown University, let’s see, tough choice on whose intelligence to believe, right? The disturbing reports that some Syrian rebels (definitely not “moderates”) had mastered creating sarin never got picked up by our docile, distinctly incurious, journalists, who rely on White House narratives and dutifully report, but rarely investigate or fact-check.
Other alarming reports surfaced of less than moderate Syrian rebels, like the viral video of the rebel commander cutting the heart from the chest of a fallen foe and eating it, but alas that too raised no alarm bells at the White House. A BBC reporter, Paul Wood, interviewed the commander, Abu Sakkar, and relates the commander’s bio as a former Free Syrian Army commander, who broke away and started his own battalion. The reporter interviewed the chief of staff of the Free Syrian Army, Salim Adris, on this incident and rather than condemnation he stated:
“We condemn what he did,” said the general. “But why do our friends in the West focus on this when thousands are dying? We are a revolution not a structured army. If we were, we would have expelled Abu Sakkar. But he commands his own battalion, which he raised with his own money. Is the West asking me now to fight Abu Sakkar and force him out of the revolution? I beg for some understanding here.””
Now we have pretend “moderates” conniving to receive American arms, then immediately recanting their “moderate” status upon receiving American arms and training. This is the situation in Syria, home base of Obama’s new enemy #1 – ISIL/ISIS/IS (rebranding confusion for the former al Qaeda in Iraq group). Where are the Syrian “moderates”, well, in this increasingly brutal civil war, “moderates” either fled the country or are dead is my best guess. So, along with the psychopaths and terrorists, we now have ISIL/ISIS/IS, who purportedly is even a little too radical for what the Obama administration rebranded “core al Qaeda”, not to be confused with the al Qaeda terrorist entity they proclaimed decimated. President Obama wants these elusive Syrian “moderates” to be the boots on the ground in his war against ISIL/ISIS/IS. Where he will find them one can safely guess – not in Syria. Lies and rebranding run amok, just to sell the American public a make-believe narrative, because of their complete and total failure to read intelligence reports thoroughly and listen to real intelligence expertise before deciding on grave American foreign policy matters. College campus radicals running a war brings to mind Sun Tzu warnings (yes, I just love my Sun Tzu):
12. There are three ways in which a ruler can bring misfortune upon his army:–
13. (1) By commanding the army to advance or to retreat, being ignorant of the fact that it cannot obey. This is called hobbling the army.
14. (2) By attempting to govern an army in the same way as he administers a kingdom, being ignorant of the conditions which obtain in an army. This causes restlessness in the soldier’s minds.
15. (3) By employing the officers of his army without discrimination, through ignorance of the military principle of adaptation to circumstances. This shakes the confidence of the soldiers.
16. But when the army is restless and distrustful, trouble is sure to come from the other feudal princes. This is simply bringing anarchy into the army, and flinging victory away.
17. Thus we may know that there are five essentials for victory: (1) He will win who knows when to fight and when not to fight. (2) He will win who knows how to handle both superior and inferior forces. (3) He will win whose army is animated by the same spirit throughout all its ranks. (4) He will win who, prepared himself, waits to take the enemy unprepared. (5) He will win who has military capacity and is not interfered with by the sovereign.
18. Hence the saying: If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.