by Professor Arthur Noble
“Not only is America run by fanatical ideologues with a messianic complex, the front man for the whole show is an imbecile and a sociopath of the very highest order who thinks bringing the world to the brink of war is like the games he probably plays on his Xbox.”1
Early in April 2018 there were warnings that the Skripal case would not be the last instance in the relentless campaign by the US and NATO to demonize Russia. Now, alarmingly, the fanatical crusade has been foolishly supported by Theresa May and her government and by French President Emmanuel Macron. Many predicted that Skripal would very likely be followed by another staged chemical attack which the US and its allies would again blame on President Assad and exploit as an excuse to attack Syria. Valery Gerasimov, the Chief of General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces, predicted the attack on 13 March 2018, exactly one month before it happened on Friday 13 April.2
The attack was yet another in a long string of blatant American violations of international law and was roundly condemned by France’s Marine Le Pen for its inherent dangers and the servile compliance of Britain and France to Washington:
“These strikes against Syria bring us on a path with unpredictable and potentially damaging consequences. France again loses an opportunity to appear on the international stage as an independent and balanced power in the world.”3
On 10 March 2018 US Secretary of Defence James Mattis admitted that the Pentagon and the CIA have “no conclusive evidence” to prove that the Syrian government used chlorine gas in militant-held areas in Eastern Ghouta.4 Yet, contradictorily, the trio of aggressors attacked Syria after directly blaming President Assad, without any evidence, for the alleged chemical attack. “The sentence first, then the verdict”, as per the famous pronouncement of the Queen in Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland.
Responding to the American-French-British intervention in Syria, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that the US and its allies “struck civil and military facilities” and “violated the UN Charter and international law”; and that Washington had launched “an aggression against a sovereign state which is at the forefront of the fight against terrorism”.5
Significantly, the air strikes were carried out just a few hours before the arrival of the fact-finding team of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW). The Russian Foreign Ministry noted: “There’s every reason to believe that the purpose of the attack on Syria was to obstruct the work of the OPCW inspectors.” (One might add: “to destroy the sites”, where no chemical substances would likely have been found.) Moscow further described it as an “intimidation act [carried out] under an absolutely far-fetched pretext of the alleged use of chemical weapons by the Syrian authorities”.6 The Syrian Foreign Ministry agreed that it was aimed at preventing the inspectors from exposing the West’s “lies and fabrications” and said that it will merely strengthen the resolve of the Syrian people to continue their now almost fully successful fight against ISIS and lead only to an escalation of the global situation.7
The Skripal affair and the ensuing assault on Syria also coincide with Trump’s appointment of his new National Security Adviser, John Bolton, America’s former Ambassador to the United Nations under President George W Bush. The Atlantic describes Bolton as a “perennial war hawk [...] prone to supporting illconsidered wars” (including the Iraq war of which he was an architect); a man “ill-suited for the role”; and (curiously) “representing a set of views diametrically opposed to the policies that helped the President secure his job”,8 including his promise to stop interfering in the internal affairs of other countries.
The Activist Post reacted to Bolton’s appointment with an article headed “John Bolton: Trump needs to confront Russia, China, Iran, North Korea, and embrace Forever War”. It spelled out what Bolton considers to be the foreign policy priorities of Washington increasingly aggressive war-oriented administration: “Vladimir Putin’s Russia is on the prowl in Eastern Europe and the Middle East in ways unprecedented since the Cold
Are we seeing the final stage of the 1992 Wolfowitz Doctrine which brazenly advocated that America must do everything in its power to retain (or now rather regain) its global hegemony and superpower status, including ensuring that Russia, China, Iran and other regional powers – but especially Russia – be prevented from attaining enough power to challenge the US? In short, Wolfowitz was a “US blueprint for total global supremacy” in the context of which, significantly, the notorious New World Order conspirator and Wolfowitz hawk Zbigniew Brzezinski wrote in his 1997 book The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy and its Geostrategic Imperatives that “the expansion of NATO is essential”.10
Brzezinski, New World Order globalist fanatic, is notorious for his statement that it is “easier to kill than to control”,11 foreshadowing Hillary Clinton’s gleeful comment on the death of Khadafi: “We came, we saw, he died.”12
After the Wolfowitz programme for global domination suffered major setbacks in Ukraine and Crimea, its Neocon propagators were forced to shift their sights directly onto Russia and label their ultimate target,
President Putin himself, “a chemical weapon threat to practically the entire world”.13 Yet it is the US itself has a massive stockpile of its own chemical weapons and was caught using them in June 2017 when it launched air strikes on Syria’s northern city of Raqqa with white phosphorus, a chemical which is banned internationally following the 1980 Protocol on Incendiary Weapons.14
The US has not only arrogantly appointed itself as global chief prosecutor for the usage of chemical weapons, but also holds the biggest store of chemical weapons in the world and has refused since 1997 to destroy them. After World War II Washington created the largest chemical weapons factory ever, the so-called Edgewood Arsenal in the State of Maryland.
During the Vietnam War, in the so-called “Operation Ranch Hand”, the White House allowed fifteen different types of chemical weapons to be tested – the world’s first usage of herbicides and defoliants for the military purposes. The defoliant and chemical weapon called “agent orange” had long-term impacts on the Vietnamese people in Vietnam itself and on those who fled in the mass exodus between 1978 and the early 1990s.15 The estimated amount of chemical substances used by Pentagon in the 1961-1971 period amounts to 100,000 tonnes.16 During the 78 days of NATO’s 1999 air strikes on Yugoslavia, which like those on Syria took place without the necessary UN Security Council authorisation, the US, Germany and the UK used depleted uranium munitions but were never invested or punished by the illegally constituted ICTY (International Criminal Court for Yugoslavia), receiving instead its full and jubilant vindication. Former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milošević was accused of war crimes but was twice exonerated by NATO’s farcical Hague Inquisition.17 In a campaign reminiscent of the Nazi propaganda machine of Goebbels the Western media systematically distorted and manipulated the facts, methodically maligning and wrongly punishing the Serbs.
We must also cite the Iraqi chemical attacks against the Iranian troops and innocent Kurds “approved” by Washington between 1980 and 1988 period. White House officials do not like to be reminded of these facts but still “justify” them as being for “the good” of the US.
In 2005 the Italian state television network, RAI, broadcast a documentary containing footage and testimony proving that the American military committed a war crime by using chemical weapons in Iraq, including in civilian areas. The film, Fallujah: the hidden massacre, specifically examined the use of white phosphorous, an incendiary and corrosive chemical agent, during the US assault on that city in November 2004. Former US soldiers, Iraqi doctors and international journalists were interviewed, and graphic images were shown of Iraqi civilians killed by chemical weapons.18
Is it not the US itself that the world should be bombing for its creation, storage and deployment of chemical weapons?
Update: At the time of writing, reports are being received that Swiss chemical experts have discovered traces of a Western-made nerve agent in the UK samples.
Arthur Noble, British citizen born 1941 in Belfast, Northern Ireland, studied German and French at Queen’s University Belfast and Music at the University of Vienna. PhD in German, Belfast 1968. University posts in Canada, England and Australia (University of Queensland). 1990 Professor of German (Chair of Modern German Language and Literature) in the University of Metz and 2000 in the University of Nancy 2, France. Retired since 2004. Pianist and church organist. Publications include nine books and numerous articles (mostly in German) on German authors, German dialects, linguistics, philosophy, politics and music. Writes for the British Church Newspaper. 1986 awarded Life Fellowship of the International Biographical Association in Cambridge.