This essay examines the connections between the foreign intervention crisis in Syria, the vast NSA surveillance program that has recently been exposed, and the sequence of events that begin with NSA program changes in February, 2001 -- six months before 9/11. The connections are illuminating.
In mid June 2013 the Obama administration announced that it will start arming insurgents against the Syrian government because the regime crossed a "red line" by using chemical weapons -- which it estimates have killed, over time, an estimated 100-150 rebels.
What we are not being told is the history of President Bashar Assad, nor is he seen speaking in the American media.
Assad is a medical doctor of mild personality who graduated in Damascus in 1988 and later began a four-year program of ophthalmology in London, England. When his father Hafez Assad, President of Syria, died in 2000, Bashar was elected President of Syria by a large popular majority, and again in 2007.
We are not given insight by the media into President Bashar Assad, the man.
He is married to British-educated Asma al-Assad, born in London, and a former investment banker. "She received the Gold Medal of the Presidency of The Italian Republic for humanitarian work in 2008 and won an honorary archaeology doctorate from La Sapienza university in Rome."
Although seen in interviews by independent journalists to be mild-mannered, respectful, rationally articulate, and fluent in English, Assad is seldom seen speaking in the US mainstream media.
Thus it is poignant to watch his 18-minute interview with German reporter Jurgen Todenhofe in July 2012, and to hear his under-stated account of the foreign-backed insurgents whose violence has led to the deaths of thousands of Syrian state supporters.
It is illuminating to watch the five-minute interview Assad gave the Sunday Times on March 3, 2013, saying that as long as Britain arms the insurgents to save Syria from its repressive dictator, "the arsonist cannot be seen as the firefighter."
In another recent German TV interview, Assad (whom we know is a medical doctor) discusses the alleged and contradictory use of chemical weapons -- defined as "weapons of mass destruction" -- in local ground combat. He goes on to describe external financial support to the insurgents as "stoking the fire."
Indeed, Aron Lund, a Swedish observer of the Syrian opposition, has listed about a dozen rebel groups, the largest of which are funded by either the West, the Gulf states, or Turkey. The 80,000-strong Free Syrian Army (also known as the Supreme Military Council), "was created in December 2012 after pressure from Western and Gulf Arab nations, which seek to make it the military wing of Syria's civilian exile group, the National Coalition."
To understand why the Western media, under heavy influence from the Pentagon, has demonized Mr. Assad as a vicious and indiscriminate murderer of his own subjects, we can turn to a 2006 interview of General Wesley Clark, a Rhodes scholar and the Supreme Allied Commander (Europe) of NATO from 1997-2000.
Speaking on March 2, 2007 to Amy Goodman of Democracy Now, Clark said that about 10 days after 9/11 he visited his former staff in the Pentagon. They told him, in astonished tones, that the US was going to go to war with Iraq -- which they said had no demonstrated connection to 9/11, and they were at a complete loss to explain why.
A few weeks later Clark went back to the Pentagon and was told that the US was going to "take out" seven Middle East countries in the next five years: Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Iran. He added, "Had there been no oil there it would be like Africa. Nobody is threatening to intervene in Africa."
This early agenda for "take out," said by Clark to have been in place immediately after 9/11, raises questions about the anthrax attacks, which started September 18, 2001.
The letters containing the lethal spores targeted, among others, Democratic Senators Tom Daschle (Senate Majority Leader) and Patrick Leahy. During this period of intense panic in Washington the 342-page Patriot Act was rushed through Congress October 24 and passed the Senate the next day.
It has since been amply demonstrated that the highly weaponized spores contained in the anthrax letters originated from within a US military laboratory, and were too sophisticated to have been produced by a non-state laboratory or by an individual.