Transcript By Rawan Mahmasa
I’m Senator Dick Black and I’m a retired colonel who served in uniform for thirty two years. I love my country. I flew two hundred and sixty nine combat missions in Vietnam as a Marine helicopter pilot and crash landed once after machine gun fire cut my flight controls. Afterwards, I made 70 combat patrols as a ground air controller for the 1st Marine Division. I was in intense, fierce combat during almost the entire time and I was wounded. My radio men were both killed beside me.
So with that background, let me say that I’m appalled by the indecency of American aggression towards Syria. Just the other day, Secretary of State Tony Blinken chastised his Chinese guest in Anchorage, Alaska, by saying that he thought that they failed to respect the rules based order, without which there would be much more violence in the world. But what is the the “rules based order” that we’re always touting? Seems that the rules are whatever the United States decides it wants at a given moment. By what right do we seize other nations ships on the high seas?
Now, the rule says that doing so is an act of war. We’re not at war. So the rules go on to say that if you’re not at war, then seizures of ships on the high seas are acts of piracy. Are these not acts of piracy when we seize these ships? What rules allow us to establish naval blockades on Syria, Iran and Venezuela? Are those not acts of war? What rules based order says that we can punish Germany for conducting a gas pipeline to Russia?
What rules in this rules based order allow us to dictate the trade of sovereign nations? The American march of conquest spans the globe. We’ve invaded sovereign nations like Serbia, Yemen and Syria, leaving them all in smoldering ruins. Does the rules based order not prohibit wars of aggression? Did we not prosecute Nazis at Nuremberg for just such actions? What rules make wars of aggression crimes for Nazis, but not for us? We’re told that we’re fighting a war on terror, but we’re not.
We’re closely allied with terrorists like al-Qaida in an endless quest to destroy Arab civilizations throughout the Middle East. Few Americans can even name all of our wars Serbia, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Ukraine, none of them attacked us. We attacked all of them. Just look at the case of Syria. Remember what Syria once was. Before the war, Syria had a nicely balanced economy, produced most of its own industrial goods. Produced its fuel and agricultural products, had very little poverty and enjoyed thriving trade, and it was financially responsible. It enjoyed 40 years of peace with Israel.
And the Constitution drafted under President Assad guarantees equal rights for women. And importantly, it guarantees religious freedom in three different parts of the text. I read it. Syria is a model for other Arab states, especially ones like Saudi Arabia, which have no constitution at all. We call Syria’s president a dictator, but in twenty fourteen, he was overwhelmingly elected by the people of Syria, in a fair and free election. It was very heavily monitored.
There were lots of observers, all agreed that it had been a true and valid election. So. Syria is a model of elective democracy, if you want to call it that, for the for the Arab world. But the Americans pretend that the election never happened, and yet many Syrians, who spent 15 hours in the blazing sun so that they could vote for President Assad, were targeted and killed by U.S. backed rebels who fired mortars into their midst and killed them.
Now, after 10 years of war, I think it’s important to recognize after 10 years of war, not a single rebel leader has ever emerged as a popular figure. The West, loves the terrorists that the people of Syria despise.
You know, we’re taught to hate President Assad because he cracked down on rioters in 2011 and they say that he gassed his people, but that’s not true because we decided to attack Syria 10 years before all of that. In 2001, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld ordered the Pentagon to draft plans to overthrow seven countries in the Middle East, beginning with Iraq, then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and finishing off with Iran. Not one of them had harmed the United States. In twenty six or in two thousand six, the US embassy in Damascus drew up detailed plans to destabilize and overthrow Syria.
Those were widely disseminated to the Pentagon, to various unified command. They went to NATO. They went widely across the world, the specific plans to destroy, stabilize and overthrow Syria. And that was long before any demonstrations had ever occurred in Syria. And yet we claim them as the reason that we oppose President Assad. In March of 2011, the United States, U.K. and France attacked and overthrew Libya. They brutally executed Colonel Gaddafi. The US then turned over control of a Libyan airfield to the Turks who used it to transport advanced weapons that had been plundered from Libya and send them eventually to supply the terrorists that were organizing in Syria.
In 2011, also during the Arab Spring, the highly secretive Central Intelligence Agency Special Activities Center sent paramilitary teams into the sovereign territory of Syria to identify, train, equip and lead terrorist to overthrow the Syrian government. In twenty thirteen, Barack Obama formalized, formalized this long-standing support for anti Syrian terrorists by secretly authorizing CIA program Timber Sycamore under program Timber Sycamore, the CIA Special Operations Division, trained, armed and paid thousands of terrorists to fight …. those armies totally under our control.
And in one case, a group in Aleppo. We had paid over a thousand of their people salaries, giving them arms, giving them training. And it wasn’t until they kidnaped a small Palestinian boy who was being treated in a hospital. They kidnapped him. They took him to the central square in Aleppo. And in order to terrorize the people into not fleeing Aleppo, which was being cordoned off by Syrian troops, they took him to the center in a pickup truck.
They grabbed a little boy by the hair. They took a knife and they slashed his head off. And then they paraded it. They held it up and waved it in front of the crowd as a warning. Don’t escape from Aleppo. We paid the salaries of every man who held that boy’s head aloft, we gave them their weapons, they gave them we gave them their truck, we gave them everything that they needed. And it was only after that very gruesome incident that we decided, well, that’s an embarrassment. We better not pay them. We have been paying terrorists like this throughout the war.
NATO and the United States have maintained an intense propaganda campaign against Syria from the outset. Sarin gas attacks that killed civilians were blamed on President Assad. But not one reporter ever asked why Assad would use gas against children, but not against armies of terrorists bearing down on the capital of Damascus. The reason is obvious, there is no answer for that. And the journalists are smart enough to know that if they ask that question, their career in journalism is finished.
Secretary of Defense James Mattis admitted in twenty eighteen that the US had no evidence that Assad had ever used sarin gas. Two courageous Turkish members of parliament were quickly accused of treason after they revealed an indictment, a criminal indictment, that showed how an al-Qaida cell had infiltrated two point two kilos of sarin gas across the border from Turkey for use in Syria, most likely going to Damascus for the initial attack. That was the red line attack that almost sent American troops into Syria.
So why do we attack Syria? Well, there are a number of reasons, part of it ties in with Israeli foreign policy. But the US also seeks to capture oil and gas routes serving South Asian to pipeline access as Saudi has an intense desire to impose harsh Wahhabi Islam on the religiously harmonious areas. The Turks cast a greedy eye on the industrial city of Aleppo. The Turks also want to capture the oil and the agricultural produce of the nation that is produced in northern Syria.
So there are many people who have these desires and and there are many reasons behind the war. Certainly, the American arms dealers profited immensely from the lucrative deals like the six hundred BMP-71 anti-tank missiles that the Central Intelligence Agency rushed to al-Qaida in 2014 to prepare them to attack across the Turkish border. It was only with those CIA provided anti-tank weapons that the al-Qaida terrorists were able to break through the Syrian armor and the Syrian lines and seize the beautiful town of Kessab and behead the Christians who were there and all of the churches and then smash ancient tombstones with sledgehammers.
That was done thanks to the CIA. Al-Qaida never could have broken the Syrian lines without those anti-tank missiles. Many of these terrorist groups have sworn to behead the Christians and the Alawites and to make sex slaves of their wives and daughters. One jihadist famously drove his American- made Humvee into battle with a naked slave girl, slashed, lashed to his windshield. And he knew that the soldiers would hesitate to shoot at his Humvee as long as there was an innocent girl lashed to the windshield.
And then that’s why he used it. That’s why he put this poor girl up there and drove her first into battle as a shield. In twenty fifteen, U.S. troops illegally invaded northern Syria and unlawfully seized Syria’s oil. We authorized an American oil company to build a refinery for one hundred and fifty million dollars and to drill for more oil on sovereign Syrian land. Before the war, Syria never needed oil or natural gas because it was so self-sufficient, it exported a little bit, but it was not a big oil producing country.
But what was important is that it provided all of the fuel, all of the gasoline, all of the heating fuel for the power plants and so forth and in Syria. But now. The legacy of the nation has been stolen by the United States, leaving Syrians to freeze to death in the winter as we steal their fuel. The same region, northern Syria is the breadbasket of the country. It grew enough wheat to feed the entire nation to export a little bit.
But this, too, has been stolen. We gave it to the Kurds who are shipping Syrian wheat to Turkish merchants while Syrian peasants starve. To tighten the noose on Syria, Secretary Mike Pompeo bragged about cutting Syria off from sources of currency and blockading oil tankers arriving from Iran. He’s right. We’ve caused immense death, disease and suffering for poor Syrians. Americans are routinely reminded that sanctions don’t affect the common people, only the leaders. Rubbish, that’s a total lie.
Sanctions do nothing but attack the innocent, the poor, the helpless. They are the most cruel and barbaric type of warfare that we can wage. We steal food, fuel and medicine from the poor. We blockade supplies for rebuilding so that Syrian man must fight for a living or starve. If we ended the blockade, they could work rebuilding the country. Syrians are tired of war, we’ve imposed 10 years of war on them. They want to rebuild. The young man,
the time that fighting wars was was exotic is over, they want to go home, they want to build families, they want to rebuild their homes and their businesses. But the United States blockades all materials necessary for rebuilding. So that young Syrian man must fight for a living or starve. As it is, the only work is fighting, which will go on as long as we continue funding it. The world must reject … ten years against the Syrians. But we’ve oppressed the Iraqi people for 30 years, we’ve dropped over a quarter of a million bombs on Iraq.
And we bombed them even while we sit in military base camps occupying the country. This madness must stop. I thank you for the opportunity to talk to you today.