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Issue #1751      October 5, 2016

Australian crimes in a criminal war

Address by CPA Sydney District Secretary Wayne Sonter to the Hands off Syria rally in Sydney on September 24.

First, I would like to acknowledge the people who have been in this country for 60,000 or more years, who have spent the last two centuries resisting a cruel invasion and occupation and who are still in struggle for a treaty between the original and colonising nations.

The Australian Air Force took part in the bombing and slaughter of Syrian troops at Deir al-Zor.

A week ago the Australian Air Force took part in the bombing and slaughter of Syrian troops at Deir al-Zor, a city in eastern Syria that has been under siege by ISIS for the last two years. It did this in concert with the US forces that are illegally ranging over Syria – in the air and on the ground, justifying their presence by the coverall of waging a war against ISIS, an entity the Americans themselves created.

However the action in Deir al-Zor last weekend has exposed to the world that USA is not at war with ISIS, but that ISIS is a US tool to destroy Syria.

It also exposes the extent to which mainstream media, with their efforts to smother the truth and divert attention from the massacre in the days since, serve as little more than propagandists for US war aims.

That Australian forces could come to be part of last week’s criminal action arises directly from this country’s endless participation in war after war, in other people’s countries, at the behest of US imperialism.

More importantly and most dangerously the United States has particularly targeted for destruction the sovereign nation of Syria to advance US strategic interests in the Middle East and beyond.

That is what makes the war on Syria such a perilous venture for all humanity. It is a step towards the USA’s key strategic objective – to take on Russia and deal it a blow once and for all to guarantee the US’s over-arching goal – to ensure its status as the world’s “first, last and only truly global empire.” The securing of this goal requires the dismembering of Russia so it can never challenge US supremacy as a continental power.

Don’t forget this is not, so far, costing the USA – or at least, not the military-industrial-financial circles that are running the country. This is a contract job, with Saudi Arabia and Qatar footing the bills while the US and its NATO and their Israeli buddies provide the logistics to the customer at suppliers’ rates.

In the matter of Deir Al-Zor the Americans first claimed the bombing of Syrian troops protecting the city from ISIS was “an accident”; when Russia announced it would take the matter to the UN Security Council for full investigation the US mouthpieces declared that Russia was “grandstanding” and should instead have brought all the Syrian and Russian killings of civilians before the Council.

Then, as if on queue, an aid convoy taking supplies to the “rebel” (read Al-Qaeda) held a quarter of Aleppo in northern Syria was destroyed two days later (September 19). The US immediately blamed Russian and Syrian air forces for the attack, without any evidence to back the charge, and despite evidence that soon emerged that it was destroyed by ground forces in “rebel” held territory.

This attack served two purposes – the mainstream media immediately switched their coverage from the US massacre in Deir al–Zor to the alleged action of the Russians and Syrians in Aleppo; and this incident in turn was used by the US gangsters to orchestrate a push for a no fly zone over Syria which would ground both Russian and Syrian air forces while the US got on with the job of fighting ISIS (while leaving the “rebels” seeking regime change alone of course).

This switching of attention from the Deir al-Zor incident to the Aleppo incident, especially in using it to demand a no fly zone against the Syrians and Russians, rather than against the Americans and their confessed misuse of airpower in Deir al-Zor, could not have succeeded without the full complicity of the media, who have demonstrated their effectiveness in maintaining full-spectrum dominance for the USA in the prosecution of its wars of choice.

While the US and its “allies” – the likes of Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey and France, Israel and the UK – have unleashed jihadi death squads on Syria to terrorise Syrians, destroy and dismember the country and bring about “regime change,” Australian governments have not been backward in doing their bit.

  • Australia has been from the start a “Friend of Syria” – the cartel of robbers, murderers and spivs that aim to profit from Syria’s destruction and consequent need for reconstruction just like they previously set out to do in Iraq and Libya;
  • Australia cut off diplomatic relations with Syria when all its mates did and has enforced US-imposed sanctions on Syria that have hurt most of all the Syrian people;
  • Australian military aircraft have been carrying out strikes in Syria, under US direction, at least since 2015;
  • Australian special forces have been training “rebels” at least since 2014, to carry out regime change in Syria, as part of US coalition plans to topple the Syrian government, but using the ISIS threat as a cover.

These military incursions by Australia, the US and its “allies” are illegal under international law: their very waging of war in Syria, without UN sanction and against the wishes of Syrians, is a war crime.

  • US and Australian governments claim that Deir al-Zor was an “accident”. This is hardly believable. Syrian soldiers who survived the US bombing and massacre say US drones were hovering over Deir al-Zor defences for 24 hours before the attack;
  • the US strikes targeted Syrian command and communication centres and were followed up by strafing sorties;
  • the Americans ignored repeated calls from the Russians to cease fire and when they did stop bombing, ISIS troops were immediately ready to storm through the breeches to mop up the remaining resistance.

What is more, even in 2012 the USA conceded that its allies – the Muslim Brotherhood Turkey and the sheikdom of the decapitation kingdom Saudi Arabia – wanted to carve out a “salafist principality” in eastern Syria, based on Deir al-Zor and el Hasaka provinces as the most effective way to isolate and subjugate an independent, secular regime in Syria. This was two years before ISIS miraculously arose out of the desert, equipped with brand new Toyota Hilux utes and heavy weaponry to sweep all before them.

No-fly zone

Deir al-Zor is an outpost of Syrian control in the midst of ISIS controlled territory. There is an airbase at Deir al-Zor which allows Syria to resist the ISIS blockade as well as project Syrian air power into the surrounding region.

The US wants the Syrian Air Force grounded – basically it wants a no fly-zone imposed on Syria. Helping ISIS break a longstanding siege to seize Deir al-Zor air base is one way to enforce this. It is not surprising then that the US attack last weekend was not the first time it has made this “mistake” in Deir al-Zor, to the advantage of ISIS. It seems to be very slow to learn from its mistakes, but this time the world has seen the mistake for what it is; now it knows.

The Deir al-Zor incident shows that the US line that it is supporting “moderate” anti-Assad forces while also prosecuting a war against ISIS is a sham. It is now seen as openly backing ISIS against Syrian forces.

We must do all we can to make sure the world does not forget this.

Australia is participating in a criminal war. Its involvement in the Deir al-Zor slaughter means it is now directly responsible for a war crime.

No wonder the Turnbull government felt it prudent to change Australia’s laws – a mere fortnight before Deir al-Zor – to prevent its military from ever being prosecuted for “accidentally” hitting the wrong targets when engaged in war!

Australia, as a part of the American Axis, has become part of a predatory coalition willing to use jihadi terrorists – including Al-Qaeda and ISIS – to overthrow legitimate governments.

We the people must demand that Australia, the US and all its NATO allies Get Out of the Middle East Now!

We should demand that Australia give no more support for US Wars!

This includes dropping all Sanctions Against Syria!

However, to stop Australia’s involvement in US wars we need to build an anti-imperialist, anti-war movement here in Australia.

We need to break our ties with US Imperialism – starting with the Closure of Pine Gap base in Central Australia and all other US Bases in Australia!

The Syrian people vow that they shall never kneel. Here in Australia it is time we learnt to rise and stand on our own feet.

Next article – Aiding and abetting – The British media and the invasion of Iraq

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