Journalist Aaron Maté, who’s done excellent research and reports regarding Syria particularly on the alleged chemical weapons attacks, recently posed the question of whether the mass murder of civilians by the US during a supposed strike against ISIS was America’s Mai Lai Massacre in Syria. But I say the entire war has been an ongoing Mai Lai Massacre – the deliberate terrorizing, torture and murder over an entire country for more than ten years.
I’ve been uncomfortably close to many terrorist attacks on civilians in Damascus during my seven trips traveling around the country during the war. On one particularly bad day in the autumn of 2016, as two friends and I were in a taxi from Lattakia back to Damascus during the early morning hours, all hell was breaking loose. The sounds of mortars hitting were close as we turned several corners to get back to our beautiful home away from home, a sublime Old Damascus boutique hotel. That hotel was less than 2 kilometers from the suburb where US backed terrorists launched their continual mortars and rockets into civilian areas of the city, and the Old City core was a favorite target. When we got to the hotel it wasn’t just mortars we were hearing but gunfire also as the terrorists of Jobar suburb were trying once again to break through the Syrian Army’s defensive line. My friends were due to fly out that day from Beirut, Lebanon and had to get back in a taxi to make their flights. I was so concerned for them but you’re playing the odds in that situation – and the odds were the same whether you were staying put or moving; thankfully they arrived safely. After they’d left I went through the lobby and a lady was whimpering in fear on one of the couches. She didn’t seem to want consolation so I went up to the bar to get a cup of coffee. The gentleman waiter behind the bar was stoic but his eyes held deep sadness. “I’m so sorry” I said and he shrugged then made coffee for us both while we waited and commiserated together, not knowing if the terrorists would be able to break through the line or not. If they did, only God knows what would have happened to the people – including me. The gunfire and mortars stopped; the terrorists failed and life quickly went back to normal again as it always did though with many families now mourning the loss of their loved ones, and new victims of injuries facing life permanently disabled, typically without limbs. Mortars are filled with shrapnel so when they explode it’s like dozens of hatchets propelled with great force, able to cut through flesh like so many hot knives through butter.
Terrorist attacks in Damascus, Homs, Aleppo – the three largest cities – and in towns and villages were common during most of the war though they were rarely mentioned at all in the ‘professional news media’ in the US and rest of the West. There weren’t “some” terrorist attacks, there have been thousands; the gorgeous alleyways of Old Damascus are littered with the distinct holes left from mortar strikes.
Terrorist attacks never occurred in Syria prior to the US, UK, France and their allies deciding to bring “freedom and democracy” to the country primarily for Israel’s interests (of expanding through all of Palestine, and taking political control over Lebanon while finalizing their theft of Syria’s Golan) using mercenary, violent, extremist proxies deceptively called “moderate rebels” or “freedom fighters” by western governments and media. The sad joke was that “moderate rebels” in Syria (many commanders and at least 100,000 fighters came from outside the country) were as rare as rainbow unicorn kittens.
There are little terrorists and there are big terrorists. Little ones are men (and women) who get used, brainwashed, paid – there are varying enticements and motivations to recruit for the dirty business of terrorizing civilian populations for the big terrorists. The big terrorists are the US, UK, France, Israel, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar along with other allies and puppet governments in Europe, Australia, Canada and in the Middle East region. The big terrorists destroy countries; rip societies and families apart; demolish infrastructures and economies; seize control over the natural resources; and dictate which leaders or systems other nations may have.
The ‘professional news media’ both left and right leaning all did their bit to support the slaughter, to mask it as a fight against a “brutal dictator” who was “killing his own people”.
The reality is that Syria has been battling hundreds of thousands of terrorists, extremists and mercenaries for the US/Western regime change addicts and allies. If you read or watch mainstream media, you’d think that Syria is a devil country for defending itself and should have fought al Qaeda, ISIS and the thousands of other militant groups with pillow fights and water pistols.
The reality is that if any Western journalist, government official, think tank ‘expert’, and ‘human rights’ leader who’s been spreading and supporting the lies about this war was personally living next to any one of those so-called moderate rebel groups, they would have been screaming for their government’s military to use whatever force necessary to defeat them. This is why the great majority of Syrians have stood united against this nightmare assault, this massive scale Mai Lai Massacre on their country.