By Dave Lindorff
Protests in NYC and London helped bring US war machine to a halt on Syria ( by ThisCantBeHappening!)
Let's be clear here. The people of the US and the world have won a huge victory over a war-obsessed US government and an administration that was hell-bent on yet again launching a criminal war of aggression against a country that poses no threat to the US or its neighbors. Overwhelming public opposition in the US and the nations of Europe, as well as most of the rest of the world to a US strike on Syria have forced the US to falter and to accept the idea of a compromise deal offered by Russia.
The Obama administration by all accounts was facing an unprecedented defeat in Congress of its proposed Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) to launch a new Middle East war, this time on the nation of Syria. It is now desperately trying to spin the bad news, with the mindless support of the US corporate media, so as to claim that it has won some kind of victory. The White House, absurdly, is arguing that the Syrian government's apparent agreement to a surprise Russian plan to place all Syria's chemical weapons stocks under international control and then to destroy them is somehow the administration's doing.
The reality: it was a quick move by Russia's foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov, to grab hold of what a US State Department source called a "rhetorical slip" by the serial-lying, war-promoting US Secretary of State John Kerry, and run with it, that has produced this backdown by the US administration.
Kerry, in brief impromptu session with reporters following a meeting with Britain's foreign secretary, was asked an unscreened question by a reporter, who wanted to know "what Syria could do" to avoid a looming US bombing blitz of the country. Kerry, like Obama used to scripted press conferences and puff-ball questions from the US press corp, offered a stumbling, off-the-cuff answer saying Syrian President Bashar al-Assad "could turn over every single bit of his chemical weapons to the international community in the next week ". But he isn't about to do it, and it can't be done."
Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, hearing this bumbling answer, took Kerry at his word and immediately announced that Russia would seek Assad's agreement to such a plan, and would help to ensure its implementation.
Prior to this surprise development, the US was offering Syria no deals. Indeed, the Obama administration was in the midst of a "flood-the-zone" lobbying campaign in Congress and the media, promoting its plan for an aerial blitz of Syria, with Obama scheduled to make a televised pitch at 9 pm ET today to pump Americans up for war...
For the rest of this article by DAVE LINDORFF in ThisCantBeHappening!, the new uncompromising three-time Project Censored Award-winning online alternative newspaper, please go to: www.thiscantbehappening.net/node/1956