This page, and adjacent book pages, will headlines, links to important articles about the Syrian conflict and explanatory comments. Copies of some of these articles will also be on candobetter.net. Comments, which add to the discussion (whether in agreement or critical), are most welcome. Candobetter Editor Update 7 April 2021: You will find there are links to videos here that have since been removed from youtube. This was the effect of youtube's sweeping pro-US censorship of content that was vitally important to establish the truth on Syria: Notably all videos from the Syrian Government, mostly of President Bashar al Assad's video records of interviews and speeches. Also videos by activists, such as Syrian Girl Partisan. It is tragic that the world is so dependent on such a prejudiced publisher as YouTube. It is important to find and support other video platforms.
From the Syrian Arab News Agency (English edition)
Damascus, (SANA, 26 Feb 2014)-Speaker of the People's Assembly Mohammad Jihad al-Laham affirmed that the Syrian people alone have the right of self-determination and elect their representatives through ballot boxes ... (unable to retrieve the rest from SANA, because of slow connection - Ed, 13:36 +10:00 26 Feb 2014)
Russia: Any resolution on Syria under humanitarian pretexts won't be allowed (17 Feb 2014)
... The [Russian Foreign] Minister stressed that there are deliberated attempts to hold the Syrian government responsible for the atrocious crimes through lies and manipulation of facts, while statistics prove that the greater part of complicated issues is caused by the behavior of extremist terrorist groups, not the Syrian government. ...
Syrian Journalist entitled Ambassador of Good Will (20 Feb 2014)
Homs(SANA)- The International Parliamentary Union granted Syrian Journalist Lina Jnaidi the title of Ambassador of good will in the field of woman rights and media in Syria.. ...
Syria: UN report on children and armed conflicts violates neutrality and credibility (21 Feb 2014)
Syria's Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva Faisal al-Hamwi dismissed some of the paragraphs of the report submitted by UN Secretary General's Representative for Children and Armed Conflict Leila Zerrougui as a blatant divergence from neutrality and credibility.
Delivering Syria's statement at the meeting of the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) on the international humanitarian initiative for children care, al-Hamwi criticized Zerrougui's ignoring of the Syrian government's cooperation with her and her team and the UNICEF office in Syria. ...
Massive rallies stress unshakable support for army (21 Feb 2014)
Citizens across Syria continue to pour into the streets, sending out a strident message of support to their army in the face of terrorism that has plagued the country, and unshakable allegiance to national firm principles.
Sadad town in Homs spells out support for army ...
Hazarma town in Douma marches in rejection of terrorism ...
Citizens in Um al-Toyour, Lattakia countryside voice support to army ...
Al-Baath Party National Leadership calls for confronting terrorism sponsors (21 Feb 2014)
The National Leadership of al-Baath Arab Socialist Party urged all the Arabs to rally around resistance and stand up against the sponsors of terrorism.
Syrians express staunch support to the Army and national principles (21 Feb 2014)
Thousands of Syrians went out in massive rallies in various areas and cities on Thursday in manifestation of unswerving adherence to the Syrian national principles and staunch support to the Syrian Arab Army.
Thousands in Qudsayya show support to Syrian army, national principles...
Najha residents voice support to national principles...
Massive rally in Misyaf to glorify martyrdom...
PM dismisses 218 more corrupt state workers (20 Feb 2014)
Damascus, (SANA)- Prime Minister Wael al-Halqi on Thursday issued several decisions dismissing 218 workers from various ministries and state establishments.
The dismissal came within the government’s measures to combat administrative and financial corruption.
104 other workers were dismissed earlier this week for the same reasons.
From the Syria News (http://www.syrianews.cc/)
The End is Near Or Is It (21 Feb 2014)
The ongoing battles in Yabroud reveal the Army’s determination to finish what it had initiated a couple of months ago which is to put an end to the threat the militants taking Qalamoun Mountains as shelters imposes. The Army is seeking to either regain control over some regions in specific (Qara, Deir Atieh, Nabak, and lately Jarajeer and Rima heights), or to impose a siege and block the way on supplies reaching armed groups in Yabroud, Assal Al-Ward, and later Rankus
The strategy of “taking control with fire” and “gradual gnawing” which the military units in Yabroud and its surrounding are following left great geographic, material, and life losses among the armed groups, according to the opposition itself which assured Monday night the killing of a significant leader, ...
The Final Damascus Saga & The Assassination of Dr. Bashar Al Assad (20 Feb 2014)
Grim warnings that an all-out assault on Syria, including assassination of President al-Assad may be imminent. Article is critical of Iran and Russia whom I had thought had helped prevent the defeat with their support of syria: "The role of the Russians is very murky, the role of the Iranians in this part is even murkier, both seen to be favoring the weakening of a strong Syria to enforce their shortsighted goals, ..."
Leon Trotsky (1879-1940) led the Bolshevik insurrection of 1917 and subsequently became Supreme Commander of the Red Army. Joseph Stalin, who took power of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU) in the late 1920's and ruthlessly suppressed his opponents, ordered Trotsky be killed by an assassin in 1940.
For all of Leon Trotsky's momentous accomplishments in his own life, much of his legacy has, largely for reasons over which he could have had no control following his murder in 1940, not assisted the advancement of humankind.
Leon Trotsky's flawed understanding of the Second World War
After 1939, Trotsky crudely transplanted Lenin's essentially correct analysis of the bloody inter-imperialist war, otherwise known as the First World War, to the Second World War. This analysis held that no capitalist nation fighting in the Second World War was any better than any other. Thus, Great Britain, the United States, Australia and New Zealand were no better than Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy and imperial Japan. Therefore, the duty of communists in these countries was to oppose their own government's war. (In Australia, this policy was carried out by the group known as the "Balmain Trotskyists" led by Nick Origlass (1908-1996) and Laurie Short (1915-2009))
However, Trotsky drew a distinction between, on the one hand, the "inter-imperialist war", between the fascist states and the western capitalist allies and, on the other hand, the war between Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union. He still saw the latter as a post-capitalist "workers' state" in spite of Stalin's tyranny and, hence, humanity had a stake in supporting the Soviet Union.
So, whilst opposing U.S, participation in the war, Trotskyists, particularly in the U.S., supported the provision of aid by the U.S. government to the Soviet Union. A number of U.S. Trotskyists actually served as merchant seamen on the convoys which sailed through the perilous icy, U-boat-infested northern Atlantic waters to deliver cargo to the Soviet port of Murmansk.
Whether or not military action, by the U.S. Navy or Air Force, in defence of the convoys against or German U-boats or bombers would have constituted participation in the "inter-imperialist war", was not explained as far as I can recall.
Leon Trotsky's dismissal of non-Marxist political leaders
In Trotsky's world view, the only political leaders likely to be of any enduring worth, were those who fully embraced his program for world socialist revolution. Those who were not were reactionary or, at best, vacillating "petty bourgeoisie". Thus, in the Trotskyist world view, there was no merit to be found in U.S. President Franklin Rooseveldt and, or if he had still been around, President John F. Kennedy (JFK), Bobby Kennedy and Martin Luther King.
Jim Garrison could have ended the Vietnam War far sooner than the 'anti-war' Movement
This 'line' was effectively carried out in the 1960's by those who wore the label 'Trotskyist'. JFK and Bobby Kennedy were dismissed by the far-left as no better than other capitalist politicians. They chose not to dispute the fraudulent Warren Commission, which held that the solitary gunman, Lee Harvey Oswald, murdered JFK.
Jim Garrison's attempts to prosecute the murderers of JFK, as told in Oliver Stone's movie JFK (1991) would almost certainly have ended the bloody Vietnam War long before 1975 had he got assistance from just a few of the many thousands of activists participating in the protest movement. As an example, it would not have been far less likely that JFK's murderers would have then been able to murder Bobby Kennedy just as he was about to win the nomination for President of the United States at the Democratic Convention in 1968. The Vietnam War would have ended on the day of Bobby Kennedy's Presidential inauguration in January 1969, if not before.
Whatever may have been the motivations of the leaders of this protest movement, the practical outcome was the prolongation, and not the ending, of that war. The consequences for the people of Indo-China were far more tragic than they need have been.
Includes embedded YouTube broadcast War and Peace in the Asia-Pacific - Ramsey Clark at the Foreign Correspondents' Club of Japan of speech given on 15 Aug 2013.
(From Wikipedia, 18 Aug 2013 : ) William Ramsey Clark (born December 18, 1927) is an American lawyer, activist and former public official. He worked for the U.S. Department of Justice, which included service as United States Attorney General from 1967 to 1969, under President Lyndon B. Johnson He supervised the drafting and played an important role in the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and Civil Rights Act of 1968. Since leaving public office Clark has led many progressive activism campaigns, including opposition to the War on Terror, and he has offered legal defense to controversial figures such as Charles Taylor, Slobodan Miloševic, Saddam Hussein, and Lyndon LaRouche.1
1. There is no record, of which I am aware, of Ramsey Clark having given any support to Florida state attorney, Jim Garrison in his attempt to bring to justice the murderers of President Kennedy, as documented in Garrison's book On the Trail of the Assassins on Oliver Stone's file of 1991 based on that book, JFK. Even at this late date, Ramsey Clark should make the effort to speak up in support of the legacy of JFK, Bobby Kennedy, Jim Garrison, and Oliver Stone as the mainstream and phony alternative media try to bury that legacy.
2. There is no record, of which I am aware, of how Ramsey Clark responded to President Johnson's cover-up of the deliberate attack on the US Navy surveillance ship the USS Liberty on 8 June 1967 by Israel, a supposed ally of the US during the Six-Day War. The Israeli war-planes even attempted to machine-gun the survivors in the water and were only stopped by the presence of a Soviet vessel in the vicinity. It can only be concluded, given the absence of other plausible explanations by the perpetrators, that the Israeli Government with the collusion of President Johnson intended to blame Egypt for the attack and for President Johnson to use that as a pretext to join Israel's premeditated war of aggression against Egypt, Syria and Jordan. This example of false flag terrorism predates the more recent and familiar example of 9/11 by 34 years and 3 months. The incident is described in Kennedy, the Lobby and the Bomb, the Voltairenet article of May 2013. The incident is somewhat in the mould of the staged incidents that were proposed in Operation Northwoods, put to President Kennedy and the Joint Chiefs of Staff by Secretary of Defense, Robert MacNamara on 13 March 1962. The incidents were to include staged military attacks on the US Guantanamo Bay military military base on the island of Cuba. Those were to be blamed on the Cuban government of Fidel Castro and used as a pretext to invade Cuba. President Kennedy rejected the proposal.
3. Ramsey Clark's attitude to President Johnson's criminal war against Vietnam is contradictory. Wikipedia writes:
As Attorney General during part of the Vietnam War, Clark oversaw the prosecution of the Boston Five for “conspiracy to aid and abet draft resistance.” Four of the five were convicted, including pediatrician Dr. Benjamin Spock and Yale chaplain William Sloane Coffin Jr.
However, in the next section, entitled International activism, Wikipedia writes:
Following his term as Attorney General Clark worked as a law professor and was active in the anti-Vietnam War movement. He visited North Vietnam in 1972 as a protest against the bombing of Hanoi.
I can only presume that Ramsey Clark formed the judgement that he could achieve more good from within government, using the resources of government than from outside. Had he spoken up earlier against the Vietnam War or demanded an explanation of the USS Liberty incident, he would have very likely found himself removed from the post of US Attorney General or, as did JFK, Malcolm X, MLK and Bobby Kennedy, have suffered an even worse fate.
Still, the achievements of Ramsey Clark as monum,ental as they are, need to be evaluated against the cost to the world and the US itself of the failure in the 1960's of JFK and RFK to dismantle the US war machine or of Jim Garrison to successfully prosecute their murderers.
That cost includes, apart from the wars in China and the Middle East mentioned above, the Invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan, genocidal counter-insurgency wars in El Salvador and Guatemala, bloody coups in Chile, Argentina and elsewhere, the UK war against Argentina in 1983, the imposition of "Disaster Capitalism" as described by Naomi Klein in the The Shock Doctrine of (2007).
Julia Gillard, almost uniquely amongst leaders of either the Labor or Coalition parties, tried to make it possible for the voting public to properly hold to account all candidates contesting the forthcoming Federal elections.
In recent years, since the release of Oliver Stone's JFK in 1991, much published research about the life of late President John F Kennedy has revealed that he was a truly courageous person who was driven by the most commendable motivations. On at least three occasions he used his authority as President of the Unites States to prevent the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the US armed forces from launching a nuclear first strike against the Soviet Union. For this, civilisation itself including at least hundred million of Soviet citizens and 20 million US citizens owe their lives to the late JFK. He also stopped his generals from launching a number of wars against countries including Cuba, Laos, Indonesia. At the time he was murdered on 22 November 1963, he was working to end the Vietnam War. He also acted domestically for US citizens against the steel corporations and banks
An ostensibly progressive, 'left-wing' view of power and politics is that anyone who wins high office, including JFK, must, by definition, have been crooked and corrupt. Had he truly sought to use his office for the welfare of ordinary citizens against the corporations, he could not have manoeuvred his way through the corrupt political machinery and be voted to high office. That he was elected President could only be because he must have sold out to the wealthy elite.
Thus, only the worst possible intentions can be attributed to JKF for decisions he made that did not clearly conform to the "left wing" paradigm of what actions should have been taken.
#jfkSupportedAlgeria">In 1957 Senator John F. Kennedy supported the Algerian rebels against the French colonialists
4 Nov 2015
On page 65 of "Kennedy - the Classic Biography" (1965, 2009) Ted Sorrenson wrote:
"One of the most carefully researched , widely publicised and officially ignored speeches Senator Kennedy ever delivered was his address in 1957 outlining the interest of America and the West in a negotiated solution for eventual self-determination in Algeria. The speech proved substantially and in some ways distressingly prophetic in subsequent years, but it was bitterly criticised at the time in Washington as well as Paris. His name and speech, he later discovered, were hailed throughout North Africa - and an American correspondent who visited the Algerian camp related to the senator his surprise at being interviewed by weary, grimy rebels on Kennedy's chances for the Presidency."
If Kennedy were around today in 2015 there is no doubt he would support the Syrian people and the Lebanese Hezbollah against proxy war being waged against them by the ISIS/alNusra terrorist footsoldiers on behalf of today's American governmentand its allies.