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Multinational Claims of Chemical Weapons in Syria

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A number of sources, including military officers from the United States, Israel, France, and Britain, have clearly stated a belief that, in spite of the “Red Line” mandate from President Obama, Syria has used and continues to use chemical weapons in the form of sarin gas. Senior Israeli officials cited have seen photographs that show victims foaming at the mouth. They place the blame on the forces of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. They claim knowledge of several incidents of this chemical usage, and the killing thereby of dozens of rebel fighters.

Brigadier General Itai Baron, the head of the Research Division of Israel’s Military Intelligence, said Tuesday that the Assad forces had access to large quantities of chemical gas weapons, and that, “We believe the regime has, and is using chemical weapons.”.

A second, unnamed, Israeli officer said chemical weapons appear to have been used in five cases, killing dozens of people.

General Baron made no reference to the White House’s absolute declaration that chemical weapons must not be utilized by the Assad regime. Rather, he called for Washington to step up assistance to Syrian rebel forces.

Speaking for the administration, press secretary Jay Carney urged caution, saying, “We support an investigation. We are monitoring this. We have not come to the conclusion that there has been that use. But it is something that is of great concern to us, to our partners, and obviously unacceptable.”

Secretary of State John Kerry, now involved in NATO meetings on the matter of the Syrian revolts, indicated he had spoken to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu by phone, and that the Prime Minister was not at that time in a position to confirm the assessment of his military leaders. Kerry also stressed caution, saying further investigation is necessary.

At a meeting in Istanbul, a U.S. spokesman said the U.S. would deliver greater aid to the rebels, but is not able at this time to send arms. It is feared the arms might fall into the hands of Islamic militants.

The rebels in Syria we know are predominately Sunni Muslims, who feel they have been oppressed by the ruling Assad family, who are Alawites, a liberal sect of Shiites who reportedly have some rhetorical backing from al-Qaeda.

Some of the areas now under rebel extremist control are enforcing social restrictions, including banning smoking, drinking, and unveiled women. They would likely receive greater global support were they to commit to a pluralistic form of government.

With the ongoing issue of having no legitimate group to support, and with the danger of arms falling into Assad’s hands, the U.S. is in a difficult situation. President Obama was clear and unyielding when he drew the “line in the sand.” It should be a matter of some interest to see how he will proceed if the claims of chemical weapons use are found to be true.

 Photo: AFP

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About John Lake

John Lake had a long and successful career in legitimate and musical theater. He moved up into work behind the camera at top motion pictures. He has done a smattering of radio, and television John joined the Blogcritics field of writers owing to a passion for the liberal press, himself speaking out about the political front, and liberal issues. Now the retired Mr. Lake has entered the field of motion picture, television, and video game (now a daily gamer!) critique. His writing is always innovative and immensely readable!
  • http://huttriverofnz.blog.co.uk peter petterson

    The US has to be very careful how they support the Syrian rebels, who could turn out to be just another group pf Muslims radicals. Certainly don’t let arms be used against them at a later date. The US should just send in an assassin to get rid of Assad by way of a drone aircraft…

  • John Lake

    We often consider the use of assassins, now drones, to take out individual leaders. The current list might include the court of Assad and his family, and it might include Kim Jong Un in North Korea. A single rocket was effective in slowing Muammar Gaddafi for several years, in Libya.
    But remember the George W. Bush plan to eliminate Saddam Hussein — Mission, Accomplished! — that dragged on for years, and resulted in more than 100,000 deaths.
    In fact, as to NK, it turned out that the experts were right (so far!) Kim was just getting his subjects emotionally involved, for the (then) coming celebration of the life of his grandfather.

  • pablo

    you never stop being an apologist and proponent of the military industrial complex john, you are always the first to publish and promote their shit.

  • roger nowosielski

    I’m afraid Pablo is right, John. You do seem determined to preserve “the American way,” and I mean here to include her imperialistic or other interests, whatever, by hook or by crook, whether it takes the drones, the assassins, what else have you.

    I do find it rather disturbing especially since in other posts and forums, you do come across as a rather decent fellow, egalitarian and all that.

    So my question is, why does what’s American or being an American trumps it all?

  • John Lake

    My fellow Americans have been lulled into a false sense of security, as Democracy crumbles before them. No one speaks out, and even the young have left the streets, and gone home. I have taken steps to make Americans aware of the evils and potential corruption within the ‘military/industrial complex’. We were warned of the coming crises by President Eisenhower, on the last day of his administration.
    If you think what you have read so far is in some way offensive (you have my sympathies) read my forthcoming article pertaining to GWB and his new library in Texas. Lastly, I object to the slang term for fecal material. John Lake

  • Glenn Contrarian

    On the one hand it sounds so easy to take care of the problem with a drone…and perhaps that would work. But I wouldn’t be eager for us to pull the trigger unless it was a clear and present danger to America.

    Personally, I would say the smart thing to do is just what we did in Libya – enforce a total no-fly zone and give the rebels all the lethal and non-lethal support they want. Just don’t put any boots on the ground.

    And for pablo, before you go tripping off the line, I’m all for slashing our defense budget by several hundred billion, starting with all MY – repeat, MY – beloved aircraft carriers (one tends to feel ownership after serving on a certain type of ship for a little over eight years). Stop producing the tanks that the Army doesn’t want, stop producing the joint strike fighters that the Air Force doesn’t want. We can have a deadlier, more effective military by cutting away all the crap we don’t need and nobody outside of certain senators (and Fox News) wants.

  • pablo

    John,
    I will stop the excrement comments when you put some depth into your analysis instead of parroting the MSM every chance you get. If you like I can do a bit of research via google on your past articles and cite well over 30 articles always parroting the MSM, as if what they say is gospel. Its not.

  • pablo

    Glenn,

    I wonder what you thought when you saw the cops in Boston, acting like storm troopers, sure didnt look like the boston tea party to me. Looked alot more like a Police State, no warrant required, throw people out of their homes, and search, with assault rifles threatening them. Somehow I bet you are all for that sort of thing, after all this is amerika isnt it?

  • roger nowosielski

    What was it? Something on the order of thirty thousand cops to look for one or two suspects?

    A show of force? Definitely so. Economically justifiable? Definitely not.

    But the point has definitely got to be made to all of America’s friends and foes: we will not rest until justice is done. If you’re for us, rest secured; if you’re against us, be certain you’ll pay the price.

  • pablo

    Justice? What justice Roger?

  • Glenn Contrarian

    pablo –

    1. For the first few days, we did not know how many there were, nor with whom they might be affiliated.

    2. We did not know if they had more bombs planted.

    3. It was crucial to show that when someone does something like this, no stone will lay unturned until they are caught…that we have zero tolerance for those who would threaten Americans.

    pablo, IIRC you’re from the PI. Does it make national news there when someone from China is kidnapped? Or Korea? Or Indonesia? Of course not. The victim’s family quietly pays the ransom and it’s pretty much done and forgotten.

    But what happens when an American gets kidnapped? All hell breaks loose, on the Filipino and the American media. The American government not only puts huge pressure on Malacanang to find the victim and hold responsible the kidnappers, but they put many millions of our own governmental and military resources into use to find them…and no ransom is paid. The kidnappers there know full well that if they kidnap a Chinese, they’ll get their money and they’ve relatively little to fear from law enforcement…but if they kidnap an American, they won’t get any money – they’ll more likely just get dead.

    This, sir, is why the ‘police state’ response in Boston was absolutely necessary – we can stupidly, cruelly kill tens of thousands of our own innocent people every friggin’ year, but nobody else can harm even one of our people, especially on our own soil. Whoever tries to do so will be caught no matter what the cost.

    The sad thing, though, is that by invading other nations, by using drones to kill innocents in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Yemen, Sudan, wherever, all we do is invite more terrorists to strike, who really won’t care if they get caught. You wanna gripe about something, gripe about how we kill innocent people overseas and wrongly hold untried, unconvicted men in Gitmo. But the response in Boston was on target, well done, and kudos for all involved on our side.

  • roger nowosielski

    You know how I meant it, Pablo. As to Glenn’s response, #11,I’m uncertain how to take it, in spite of touches of irony here and there.

  • pablo

    Glenn 11

    That is the biggest pile of horse manure that I have read in quite some time.

    First of all you nor I have any idea of what actually occurred in Boston. The same is true I might add on 9/11. You have what the MSM reports as fact, nothing more nothing less. The difference between you and I (one of many) is that you believe them, while I do not. The fact of the matter is that the vast majority of so called terrorist attacks that have happened on US soil the last 10 years have all been done in coordination with the FBI, and urged by them to do the crimes they committed.

    You are very naive if you think that those that are in power give a rat’s ass about your life because you are an American. All one has to do is bear witness to the thousands of American lives lost in Iraq and Afghanistan for no reason at all, other than to sacrifice them.

    The police state response in Boston, was just that, nothing more, and boy did it show. From the jack booted thugs with assault weapons breaking into innocent peoples home’s to the shooting of an unarmed innocent until proven guilty kid in boat, who conveniently had his throat sliced open.

    It is indeed true that I do not trust my government, not in the least, particularly the armed part of it. I might remind you that our country was founded on distrust of government, not on trust nor obedience to it.

    The Boston police state aftermath is simply the beginnings of what is to come. As you are being trained every time you go to the airport to present your genitals for inspection to domesticate you, the same is true of Boston (and how utterly ironic where it occurred). the jack booted thugs are here, and so are the cameras with microphones on every lampost. Enjoy!!

  • http://huttriverofnz.blog.co.uk peter petterson

    Interesting comments. Get your Republicans to suggest using a drone. Democrats can support them in your Senate…

  • Illuminatus Hussein O’Chavez

    First of all you nor I have any idea of what actually occurred in Boston. The same is true I might add on 9/11.

    Mr. pablo – just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean that we’re not really out to get you. We know all about you, got pictures and everything. And we’re holding meetings at Davos chaired by Obama, Hugo Chavez (who didn’t really die) and JFK (who never was assassinated) where we’ll discuss our ongoing campaign to fluoridate all the world’s drinking water to zombify your brains, vaccinate all the kids in order to have more autistics, and send secret messages to all our minions through our Chief of Staff, Honey Boo-Boo.

    And at Davos we’re also going to discuss our Final Solution, how we’re going to get rid of People Who Know Too Much, like Glenn Beck and Alex Jones and everyone who follows them at The Blaze and Infowars.

    Yes, we know everything, and when we come for you, your first clue will be the black helicopters silently approaching you at night. And you’ll be interrogated by none other than Maury Povich and Jerry Springer – yes, they’re part of us, too. And when we’ve dug all that you know out of your skull like the children digging ice cream out of paper cups at any of the thousands of Baskin-Robbins – yes, we own them too (so we can fluoridate all the ice cream) – we’re going to send you away, to teach you how to be sensible, logical, responsible, practical…and we’ll show you a world where you could be so dependable, clinical, intellectual, cynical…

    …yes, you will be one of The Stepford Group, our worldwide secret government where Stepford Men have Stepford Wives and nobody ever has to think again, because thinking is too dangerous, you see. It’s really bad for your health….

  • Dr Dreadful

    The fact of the matter is that the vast majority of so called terrorist attacks that have happened on US soil the last 10 years have all been done in coordination with the FBI, and urged by them to do the crimes they committed.

    No, Pablo, that isn’t “the fact of the matter”, it’s your opinion. And it will remain so as long as you continue to fail to provide a shred of evidence to support your claim.

    And by “evidence” I don’t mean your usual modus operandi of innuendo, incoherent name-dropping, and regurgitation of the utterances of Alex Jones.

    It isn’t true that we know nothing of what transpired in Boston other than mainstream media reports. We also have law enforcement statements, eyewitness accounts, photos, audio and video taken during the events of last week, social media conversations, and so on.

    Glenn, along with everyone else, is perfectly capable of examining that evidence and drawing his own conclusions about what occurred. It doesn’t make him “naive” or a “sheep” just because he draws different ones than you.

  • roger nowosielski

    @15

    “…because thinking is too dangerous…”

    Kurt Vonnegut (Harrison Bergeron) might disagree, with the parody, that is.

  • John Lake

    @#15 NB
    If there is ever a scheme to remove the fluoride from urban drinking water, we may assume the world’s dentists have developed into a new power/special interest group.

  • roger nowosielski

    Peter Peterson,

    Looked up your blog and your lead article about the plight of the Kiwis attracted my attention. I posted a link to it on another BC thread, just to get a second opinion from a resident Aussie, and the following are some of the responses: see 140, 141, 143 and 147, for example.

    Would you care to comment?

  • pablo

    16 Dread,

    “The fact of the matter is that the vast majority of so called terrorist attacks that have happened on US soil the last 10 years have all been done in coordination with the FBI, and urged by them to do the crimes they committed.”

    “No, Pablo, that isn’t “the fact of the matter”, it’s your opinion. And it will remain so as long as you continue to fail to provide a shred of evidence to support your claim.”

    Since you are so woefully uninformed Dread I will provide the research for you.

    FBI-Assists1

    FBI-Asists2

    I do suggest Dread that you get up to speed on what is going on, as you obviously do not have a clue.

  • pablo

    so there has been a total of 17 terror plots out of 20 where the FBI was running the show, is it so surprising to you that many people distrust them now? Hardly.

    I will be the first to admit that I do not in fact know who actually planned 9/11 or Boston, but either do you Dread, and your not man enough to admit it, you drink up the koolade then offer it up as fact. It hardly is.
    I do find it amusing that those that throw out the tin foil hat phrase almost invariably are wearing the dunce cap, and that in and of itself is highly entertaining for me.

  • pablo

    Peter 1
    “The US has to be very careful how they support the Syrian rebels, who could turn out to be just another group pf Muslims radicals.”

    It has already been established beyond question that most of these rebels are Muslim radicals, and as many of us that know what is going on have said for a long long time alciada has always been controlled by us and british intel. Surprise surprise.

  • Illuminatus Hussein O’Chavez

    Yes, pablo, my young apprentice, you are coming along quite nicely, especially now that you have learned to use “Freedom Watch” on Fox News as your truly unimpeachable resource.

  • pablo

    I thought i quoted the ny times as well, of course you didn’t mention that. And of all the people that are at Fox, Andrew Napolitano inmho has some integrity.

  • roger nowosielski

    You might appreciate this one, Pablo:

    “Crisis is a means of governing. In a world that seems to hold together only through the infinite management of its own collapse.”

    From “The Coming Insurrection.”

  • pablo

    Not to mention the facts are the facts, but as is oh so typical on this site its all ad hominem anyways.Then the author of the comment has to hide his identity.

    The facts are that almost every single solitary terrorist attack on US soil since 9/11 has been with the assistance and urging of the FBI. So no Dread, that is not my opinion, it is a fact, and the fact that you have your head buried in the sand regarding that fact says wonders about your being woefully uniformed.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/IanMayfield Dr Dreadful

    Pablo, as to your first link in #20, that is not the same woman, although they do look similar.

    And as to your second, you appear to have difficulty differentiating between a deliberately orchestrated attack and an undercover police operation.

  • pablo

    Dread, yes I do, and so does the FBI.

  • pablo

    Dread,

    I attempted to time stamp that video, so that just Judge Napalitano’s clip would show, I have not opinion one way or the other about the woman.

  • pablo

    The best book written on the subject of Synthetic Terrorism. Here is a link to it, in particular starting on page 144 shows exactly how complicit the FBI was in carrying out WTC attack in 1993, up to and including insisting that the terrorists use real explosives. I know you won’t read it Dread, as you prefer your koolade artificially sweetened to make if more potable. Nevertheless here it is, for those that might be interested.

    Synthetic Terrorism

  • John Lake

    Now I understand why Pablo insists I sympathize with the MSM (Main Stream Media, I assume.) It is unusual to run into someone who believes that the U.S. Government is behind terrorist attacks.
    If one limits oneself to legitimate web sites, and ignores the foolish and absurd, one will have some grasp of what goes on in the world.

  • pablo

    The US government is very very big John, the fact that I do believe there is a shadow government since the days of the JFK assassination is hardly an unusual viewpoint. One of the sites that I do frequent who shares many of my views is infowars.com. That site has about 5 million views per week John. I would hardly call that unusual.

    The fact that you buy what is spoon fed to you, and then parrot it back on here on an almost daily basis, shows to me how shallow your political acumen really is. At least most of the other writers on here stick their necks out with a bit of subjective commentary. With you its propaganda, hook, line and sinker.

    As to your last sentence, what exactly according to you “legitmate” websites? Perhaps MSNBC, owned by General Electric one of the world’s largest defense contractors? Or how about the Huff huff huffington post owned by Time/Warner? Are these the types of websites that you view as “legitimate” John. By legitimate I am assuming that you are referring to news sites that are without bias. As if they have bias then without mentioning that little caveat, they hardly qualify for that status.

    I could do a search and find at least 50 articles written by you in the last year or two, all of them parroting the MSM, without any bit of substance or critique whatsoever John. Why don’t you try and show some depth, or some character in your assessments of what is going on, instead of simply shilling for them for a change?

  • pablo

    Oh in case I forget to mention John infowars.com had some 50 million hits that last two weeks. Unusual huh?

  • pablo

    If you do a youtube search for these phrases with the most view counts:

    sandy hook 11,000,000 hits, the video is about it being a possible hoax.

    “Obama Deception” a film by Alex Jones of infowars.com 12 million hits

    Now I am not going to get into or discuss Sandy Hook, as it is not one of my areas of study. However what I am pointing out to you John in this day and age is it hardly “unusual” to believe that part of the government is involved in false flags in regards to domestic terrorism. You may disagree all you want, but at least have the honesty to admit it is hardly unusual.

    I am all ears as to your legitimate sources of information. LOL

  • John Lake

    The National Enquirer is also a popular source of amusement.
    I don’t parrot anyone; every word I write comes from my inner beliefs. I’m not in a position to examine the physical area’s near terrorist attacks, so I have to have some faith in the media.
    I was proud of our ability to find and stop the Boston Marathon bombers. It is amazing that our law enforcement officers can do that. Such enforcement goes a long way in preventing future attacks.
    I could question the validity of the CNN/Fox News view of the search and capture, but without them we have nothing.

  • John Lake

    There is one area where I do question the information from the MSM. In Sandy Hook, they still insist the rifle used was semi-automatic. In fact, considering the number of shots fired, including (I’m doing this from memory) 30-50 shots into one young child, one might suspect the rifle was able to be modified to automatic fire. Considering the unprecedented power of the gun lobbies, this deception seems possible and ominous.
    If you re-read my article ( Seeking a Motive in the Murder of Young Children and Educators), you’ll note that I included facts that were not available from most reports. I made some effort to develop some insight into the mind of Adam Lanza. For my efforts I was accused of making this shooter into some kind of hero. I hardly think that he would take much pleasure in being discussed at length, since he was dead.

  • pablo

    A feeble attempt at best John. As to faith in the MSM, you have more than some, you might as well be working for them.

    I see that you did not mention by name sources of news that you do find legitimate, that is without bias. Not surprising as there aren’t any, particularly in the realm of the MSM.

    I see you also did not mention the New York times article that I cited, where virtually almost every single terrorist act that has occurred in the USA during the last 10 years has been in complicity with the FBI. But you are oh so proud of our law enforcement that found and stopped the bombers, as if you have one shred of concrete evidence to back that up. You don’t, you simply have blind faith which is another word for irrationality.

    I can just see those 12 million people seeking amusement John, it could never occur to you that many of those millions are seeking their sources of news from other places. You are less than honest.

  • John Lake

    Thanks pal —
    I just clicked on one of your links and got some virus sustaining, loading, goof-ball source. I see you haven’t yet read my #36; I will stand patiently by.

  • pablo

    Oh and on the subject of Boston and the “lockdown” (something that is done inside prisons) perhaps you can show me the actual legal order that contradicted the fourth amendment and allowed the police to order people from their homes so that they could search them. I can find no such order in writing.

    And if there were one it would be publicly available online, its not as I have looked. I can see news sources where it is reported for people to stay in their homes and to answer the door only to police that identify themselves, however I can find no legal order that allowed the police to search anyone’s home. So it was unlawful. But we as Americans know that it is ok for the police to break the law to protect us, even if it means shoving an assault weapon down our throats.

  • pablo

    Nice try on the virus John, I have linked to the New York times, Google and Indymedia. Obviously due to your ignorance you are not aware of Indymedia, hardly a source of virus.

    Why do you assume because I do not comment on a post that you wrote, that I did not read it? Again a very irrational approach. I read it and chose not to comment on it. Kapiche pal?

  • pablo

    Indymedia “A network of individuals, independent and alternative media activists and organisations, offering grassroots, non-corporate, non-commercial coverage of important social and political issues.” Virus my ass John.

  • pablo

    And it certainly no wonder you have not hear of Indymedia John, you far prefer sourcing “legitimate” (gag) multi-national corporations as your source of information, and boy does it show.

  • John Lake

    Oh, Kapiche.
    I agree that our freedoms are being adulterated daily. Inexplicitly, it seems rational and acceptable. Soon we will accept phone taps, and warrantless searches, without complaint. The issue of drones comes to mind, and that too, seems acceptable. I can’t see how they do it. I leave it to you and your compatriots to continue the good work of protecting our rights.

    Ok I may have to check out ‘Indymedia.’

  • Illuminatus Hussein O’Chavez

    Yes, o pablo, you begin to see – as soon as you begin working for the government, you are quickly brainwashed to believe everything the government and the MSM says. Only those who have never worked for the government know the real truth, the truth we do not want you to know. The government is all part of a silent worldwide cabal that is determined to bring all humanity under its sway…

    …and you, pablo, know too much, and because of this you are now on Double Secret Probation.

    Consider yourself warned…..

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/IanMayfield Dr Dreadful

    @ #28:

    Pablo, you fail to note that in all the plots where the FBI was involved (the NYT article says 14 out of 22, by the way, not 17 out of 20), the would-be terrorists were arrested before they could actually harm anyone.

    Whatever you think about the methods or the ethics of what the agency did (particularly when it comes to encouraging people to commit crimes who apparently had no actual desire to do so), it’s a far cry from that to actually carrying out terrorist acts themselves.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/IanMayfield Dr Dreadful

    I do find it noteworthy, Pablo, that you disparage as sources MSNBC for no other reason than that it’s owned by General Electric, and Huffington Post for no other reason than that it’s owned by Time Warner; yet offer on your own part the New York Times which is owned by the Sulzberger family (who are undoubtedly members of the Bilderberg Group, the Bohemian Grove, the illuminati and the Mickey Mouse Club), Fox News which is owned by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation, and YouTube which is owned by Google.

    Can you see how that double standard might undermine your credibility?

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/IanMayfield Dr Dreadful

    I do believe there is a shadow government since the days of the JFK assassination

    Why only since then?

  • pablo

    Very good about the NYT Dread, however if I dont post to a MSM source, you will not believe it. So no I do not see how that can undermine my credibility. As to the attacks that were foiled, that certainly was not the case in 1993 with the WTC, where the FBI was not only involved but insisted that the terrorists use real explosives. Do your own research on that if you do not believe me.

    As to since JFK, it is my belief that there was a coup at that time.

  • pablo

    By the way Dread did you see the recent article on the City of London in Vanity Fair?

    Its quite telling actually, I particularly like this quote:

    “One sign of the City of London’s distinct identity is the fact that the Queen, on official visits there, will stop at the boundary of the Square Mile, where she is met by the lord mayor, who engages her in a short, colorful ritual, before she may proceed. Most Brits see this merely as a relic from a bygone age, a show for the tourists. They are wrong.”

    City of London article

  • Ruth

    I happen to know through moments of study that 28 of pablo’s 32 conspiracy theories were developed by members of the Shadow Shadow Government.

  • Eleanor

    Ruth, a mere initiate, has been silenced and will reveal nothing more about the coalition of feminists and interdimensional beings behind It All.

  • pablo

    Don’t forget Gloria Steinem worked for the CIA, and this just out too, Boston bombers’ uncle married daughter of top CIA official

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/IanMayfield Dr Dreadful

    Pablo @ 49:

    Yes, I think you linked to that article once before and I read it then.

    The City of London is a very curious entity and it is in many respects a small sovereign country (although it does defer to the UK in defence and in most of its laws – for example, you won’t be able to commit murder, go to the City of London and think the police can’t touch you).

    Londoners have always been a rebellious and independent-minded lot anyway. In the 12th century they were even responsible for fundamentally changing the course of English history, when Matilda, the legitimate successor to the throne who’d been winning the civil war that was going on at the time, ill-advisedly pissed the inhabitants of the city off by refusing to cut their taxes after they’d welcomed her and promised their support. They promptly withdrew it, ran her out of town and gave their backing to her rival, who eventually won the war and became king.

    In retrospect, it was probably a bad idea for the Anglo-Saxon and Norman kings to make London their capital in the first place, although as the article notes, they pretty much had no choice as the city’s merchants and financiers were the only ones who had enough money to bankroll their military expeditions and other projects.

    It should be noted, however, that early medieval kings were nowhere near as powerful as they later became. It should also be remembered (and you’re far from being the only American not to grasp this – the authors of the Declaration of Independence apparently didn’t either) that the English monarch is, and has been for over 300 years, a figurehead with no actual political power. There isn’t anything sinister to be read into the ceremonial hoops she has to jump through to gain access to the City.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/IanMayfield Dr Dreadful

    And @ #48:

    You don’t have to post to an MSM source, Pablo, just a credible one: meaning one where the evidence and logic holds up.

    I will read more of your source in #30 when I have time, although the introduction, in which the author speaks of hearing about 9/11 while he was in Germany and immediately deciding, apparently without any evidence whatsoever, that it had to be an inside job, doesn’t fill me with confidence.

  • Clav

    The government may well be involved in terrorist attacks; although I’ve never seen proof positive of such, I absolutely have no problem in believing that not only would the rulers of this country contemplate such, they would also have no moral compunctions at all about actually doing so if it served their ends, (because they have repeatedly shown us for decades that they literally have no morals).

    But,even they cannot alter the fact that the drink’s name is now spelled Kool-Aid, not Koolade.

  • http://www.squidoo.com/lensmasters/IanMayfield Dr Dreadful

    All very well, Clav, except that your narrative of a government too incompetent to run anything isn’t very consistent with the idea of one that can carry out terror attacks without leaking a single piece of hard evidence connecting it to them.

  • S.T.M

    I wouldn’t doubt it either, Doc. The sources are credible. And the US is being very cautious, as it should.

    However, even if it’s true, it’s hard to know what the US could do – it’s in a bind.

    No fly zones are not a possibility in Syria unless you want to lose a lot of aircraft, because the air defences as rather formidable compared to anything yet faced, for instance in Libya, and no one in the US is going to countenence costly involvement in another mid-east war.

    Something probably needs to be done, but what. And here’s the rub – the larger more modereate groups are fighting alogside islamists committed to downfall of the US and attacks upon it.

    So where do you from there?

  • S.T.M

    BTW, fantastic to see Pablo out of the woodwork on this with his equally fabtastic conspiracy theories about the US attacking itself through FBI and CIA involvement.

    See, this is why Yanks need guns. Their own government wants to do itself and its country in.

    How come everyone can’t work this out?

  • S.T.M

    Although the idea of a “shadow government” does dovetail nicely with the view that the US is not a liberal democracy in any way shape or form but an oligarchy that affords its people no power at all, either at the ballot box or through representation to their elected officials, most of whom will only listen to people with money, power or influence.

    What the US needs is a system with an organised Opposition – in opposition to the government in the House and the senate – and an actual Opposition Leader who can point out in an organised an socially acceptable way exactly what it the government is doing wrong, why, and how to fix it if they elect the opposition party.

    Otherwise, it’s just more squabbling and useless navel-gazing on Capitol Hill.

  • John Lake

    57 – S.T.M
    A no fly zone seems to be the leading potential action. Remember, the president has stated a position, and he can hardly back down.

  • pablo

    58 STM
    “BTW, fantastic to see Pablo out of the woodwork on this with his equally fabtastic conspiracy theories about the US attacking itself through FBI and CIA involvement.”

    I guess you never heard the phrase “9/11 was an inside job” STM. Simply fabtastic! Or I guess you never heard of the JFK assassination where there is ample evidence that the CIA was involved. Simply Fabtastic!

  • Illuminatus Hussein O’Chavez

    Apparently nobody got what Doc pointed out, in the incredible irony that America’s government is supposedly SO incompetent, yet is also somehow SO adept at carrying these attacks without leaving a shred of physical evidence pointing back to the government.

    And for Clavos –

    The government may well be involved in terrorist attacks; although I’ve never seen proof positive of such, I absolutely have no problem in believing that not only would the rulers of this country contemplate such, they would also have no moral compunctions at all about actually doing so if it served their ends

    Again, if the governments of the world are SO incompetent, how is it they’re able to organize this worldwide cabal without a shred of evidence? You know, there are single governments that carried out ‘false flag’ operations – like Hitler did against Poland in 1939 – and there are people within governments who carried out false-flag operations without the knowledge of the higher-ups of that government – like the Gulf of Tonkin Incident may very well have been – but the incompetent governments of the world getting together to do so, and are able to do so in utter secrecy for decades even in this age of Wikileaks and Anonymous?

    Please.

    What’s really ironic is that you at least to some extent (and pablo, to a much greater extent) buy into this claptrap knowing that there’s precisely zero hard evidence to go on, yet you viscerally oppose the reality of Anthropogenic Global Warming when there is a wealth of hard evidence to go on!

    What you don’t realize is that you’re supporting one and not the other not because of evidence or the lack thereof, but because such are what you personally want or don’t want to believe – the presence of evidence or the lack thereof simply doesn’t matter to either of you.

  • Dr Luria

    Perseverative argumentation is a behavioral correlate of frontal lobe damage often requiring extraordinary effort on the subject’s part to control.

  • Clav

    but the incompetent governments of the world getting together to do so, and are able to do so in utter secrecy for decades even in this age of Wikileaks and Anonymous?

    That’s not even close to what I said. As usual, you severe lack of reading comprehension has lead you to reply with a non sequitur. Here, read it again:

    “I absolutely have no problem in believing that not only would the rulers of this country contemplate such, they would also have no moral compunctions at all about actually doing so if it served their ends, (because they have repeatedly shown us for decades that they literally have no morals).”

    That not only makes no reference whatever to a “worldwide cabal,” it doesn’t even state that the US government is provably engaged in terrorists acts.

    My only point was and is that, given the total and utter lack of morality, honesty, probity or any redeeming quality in the United States of America’s federal government’s Executive and Legislative branches, I have no doubt that, given an incentive offering the members of both those branches some form of gain, either of power or control, I have no doubt that they would undertake virtually anything to achieve those gains — anything.

    Doc’s point about the dichotomy between my belief in their ineptitude and my belief in their malevolence is the only one that even comes close to pointing out an error in my thinking, and even Doc skips over the fact that I only say they would “attempt” such deeds — not necessarily achieve them.

  • Clav

    As for a “total lack of evidence” of my suspicions alluded to by Glenn, I draw your attention to the recent murder by federal action, totally devoid of due process, of a US citizen .

  • Clav

    Perseverative argumentation is a behavioral correlate of frontal lobe damage often requiring extraordinary effort on the subject’s part to control.

    Absolutely correct. I have suffered from frontal lobe damage inflicted on me in Vietnam when I was shot at close range with a .45 by a crazed 2nd Lieutenant who hated draftees.

    It’s been a bitch ever since to control my inordinate pleasure in putting to sea in small boats.

  • Illuminatus Hussein O’Chavez

    *sigh*

    You quite correctly point out how I missed out what you strictly said – essentially pointing out how my wrong assumptions about what you said…

    …and then you included a sweeping assumption of your own:

    given the total and utter lack of morality, honesty, probity or any redeeming quality in the United States of America’s federal government’s Executive and Legislative branches,

    To you, it is a given. Your judgments are all starting with that assumption, and so it colors all your judgments for good or ill. You’ve said several times before how lazy you think government workers are, and now you’re stating that the non-judicial branches have zero redeeming qualities whatsoever.

    Yes, you DO go on assumptions, Clav – you’re proving it time and time again with every spiteful broad-brush statement you make about people who work for or are part of the government.

    But here’s a clue for you: the people who work for the government AND those who are elected are people, and just like any other group of people, there are good people and there are bad people…and your sweeping assumptions are by definition every bit as logically fallacious as any logical fallacy you’ve ever pointed out in my writings.

  • Dr Dreadful

    As for a “total lack of evidence” of my suspicions alluded to by Glenn, I draw your attention to the recent murder by federal action, totally devoid of due process, of a US citizen.

    Which the feds made no attempt to cover up.

    The concern is not, as Pablo insists, an illegitimate shadow government but a legitimate one operating within a culture, created during the Bush 43 administration and perpetuated during the current one, of blatant disregard for due process coupled with an expectation of unaccountability.

  • Clav

    Which the feds made no attempt to cover up.

    I don’t think I’ve accused them of covering up. On the contrary, I find them increasingly arrogant in their brazenness.

    The concern is not, as Pablo insists, an illegitimate shadow government but a legitimate one operating within a culture, created during the Bush 43 administration and perpetuated during the current one, of blatant disregard for due process coupled with an expectation of unaccountability.

    With which I agree (I don’t think I mentioned a “shadow government — am talking about the one that steals from us every April 15), and one extant proof of this government’s unlawful bent is the Anwar Al-Awlaki murder.

    Within time, I suspect other proofs will surface as well.

  • Dr Dreadful

    No, Clav, the “shadow government” is Pablo’s theory. As far as “other proofs”, many candidates for the Greatest Hits album have already emerged, including rendition, warrantless surveillance, Guantanamo and military tribunals, indefinite detention and other classics.

  • Clav

    Point taken, Doc, point taken.

  • Dr Dreadful

    Incidentally, at Pablo’s invitation I read Webster Tarpley’s account of the 1993 WTC bombing on page 144 et seq. of his link in comment #30.

    Pablo offers the account as proof that the bombing was carried out by the FBI. Tarpley’s case centres on three points. First, that the mastermind of the plot, Ramzi Yousef, was detained at immigration but “by some strange coincidence” was then let go because there was no room in the lockup. I think that this is conclusive proof of an inside job in much the same way that the fact convicts occasionally escape from prison is conclusive proof that prison staff deliberately let them go.

    The second and third points rest on the testimony of an informer, Emad Salem, who claims to have infiltrated the terrorist cell with the aim of substituting the explosives with a harmless powder, but was then ordered not to do so and later dissuaded by agents from lodging a complaint about this. Tarpley takes this to mean that the FBI wanted the WTC attack to happen. Those of us who have ever worked for a largish organization know that petty inter-office politics seems a far more credible explanation for the agents’ behaviour. Indeed, I seem to recall that this sort of institutional lack of acquaintance between arses and elbows also emerged during the 9/11 inquiry as a factor in the FBI’s failure to detect the plot.

    Tarpley also discusses Salem’s charge that the FBI had the terrorist cell under full surveillance, but at the behest of a supervisor pulled it at a crucial moment. He concludes this to signify that the supervisor was in on the plot. I’m sure I’m not alone in my own conclusion that this signifies that the supervisor was an idiot.

    All of which does not, by itself, dismantle Pablo’s theory but does strengthen my case that Tarpley disregards Sherlock Holmes’s famous aphorism that I alluded to in comment 54.

  • John Lake

    And remember, at that time the monitoring of terrorist cells wasn’t the priority it has been in recent years.

  • S.T.M

    Pablo, I really did mean it. I do think it’s fabtastic (yes, a cross between fantastic and fabulous). OK, I’ll admit: I’m a convicted, terminal smart-arse and a shit-stirrer (must be the convict gene) – and if I always have a little shot at you, it’s because I generally don’t agree with the more extreme views you profess, but, seriously, how can it not be good that everyone’s opinions can be presented here with the idea and promise that they are equally valid, even if we don’t agree with them?

    Fuck, seriously, this world would be a boring place if everyone believed the same shit. That’s been a problem in a few places in the recent past.

    Here’s one thing I agree with you on, and it’s an Aussie trait that thankfully infects almost the whole country: I have a healthy disrespect for authority figures, authority generally, and pomposity without compassion.

    And I do think the US is an oligarchy, so the shadow government stuff might not be that far off the truth.

    Just one example: Certainly, presidential – ruling – cabinets are not elected, which should constitute a worry for Americans. It is often those unelected cabinets that drive US fiscal and domestic and foreign policy. It seems they have an inordinate amount of power never invested in them by the people of the United States.

    And there’s a shitload where that came from of other stuff where our views might run parallel.

    For what it’s worth …

  • S.T.M

    John, I don’t believe they will go for the no-fly zones. The Syrian air defences are at a level almost like those of the old Soviet Union. Airspace over Syria would be a hostile place even for technologically advanced western air forces.

    I can’t see what the US would do beyond slectively ramping up its aid and making sure that aid went to the appropriate people, rather than the inappropriate ones.

    Of course, that always depends on the whim of whoever it is at the time within the US government in charge of dishing out the drachmas and the goodies.

    Therein lies part of the problem that is now leaving the Obama administration in a bind.

  • Dr Dreadful

    The Syrian air defences are at a level almost like those of the old Soviet Union.

    Not sure about that, Stan, since a few years back the Israeli Air Force were able to go in, bomb a nuclear power plant to dust and get back out again before the Syrian radar operator had finished removing his finger from his nose.

  • Dr Dreadful

    many candidates for the Greatest Hits album have already emerged, including rendition, warrantless surveillance, Guantanamo and military tribunals, indefinite detention and other classics.

    And then of course there’s this.

    The irony is deafening.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Doc –

    Air defences on the level of the ‘old Soviet Union’ may not be a compliment in today’s world.

  • Dr Dreadful

    Chyort voz’mi! You may have point there, comrade.

  • S.T.M

    Doc, Glenn: The Russians have upped the ante. The place is bristling with air defences and Syria has some quality Russian aircraft in considerable numbers, including MiG 29s. It would be unlike anything faced by western air forces in previous no-fly operations or attacks such as those on Baghdad.

    The US military has admitted it has some concern in this regard about operations over Syria.

    I guess they have their reasons.

  • Dr Dreadful

    Considering what’s going on on the ground over there, Stan, their air defences might have a few more holes than they’d like to let on.

    Wouldn’t put it past the Seppos to hook up with the Syrian rebels and get them to bomb a few airfields and defence installations in return for air support from the USAF.

    Although there might be a few elderly Cubans who’d have a thing or two to say about that plan.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Stan –

    I hate to sound like the prototypical overconfident blustering American, but their SAM capability isn’t much of a concern unless can handle a swarm of Tomahawks, and I wouldn’t worry much about their aircraft unless their air force has over-the-horizon anti-air capabilities…and that’s if we don’t use our stealth capabilities. These days, if you have to wait until you can physically see our aircraft, you’ve already lost.

    Besides, it’s unlikely that the Russians sold them MiG-29’s with full capabilities. They more likely sold them the basic airframes with downgraded avionics systems, much as we’ve done with most of our military aircraft sales to, say, Israel and Saudi Arabia.

    And before anyone starts pinging on me for being militaristic, let me say again that I’m a strong supporter of deep defense budget cuts, starting with my beloved (but hideously expensive and too-many-eggs-in-one-basket vulnerable) aircraft carriers.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/irene-athena Irene Athena

    77 – Big Sister is watching us.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/irene-athena Irene Athena

    Moral outrage over the use of Sarin gas is ultimately expressed by demonstrating that our weapons are better than their’s are anyway.

  • roger nowosielski

    A point most likely lost on many of the disputants . . .