Rebel held Eastern Aleppo - there have been no functioning hospitals here for some considerable time (image source: Daily Mail)
It was entirely predictable that right after the Russian air force and the Syrian Army resumed the initiative to push Islamic extremist rebels out of Aleppo and their other remaining strongholds in Syria, western media would start up the anti Assad propaganda again. Sure enough we are now reading claims that the Syrians and the Russians are deliberately bombing hospitals in Aleppo and elsewhere and are using gas and other banned weapons against Obama's beloved 'moderate rebels' (the same moderate rebels that have videoed their enemies, including western journalists and aid workers being beheaded with kitchen knives or burned alive, who have posted online videos of their 'warriors' dismembering the corpses of people who opposed them and eating the raw, bloody and still warm vital organs torn from those bodies, who have taken thousands of totally innocent Shi'ite, Yazidi, Christian and Jewish girls as sex slaves and who have done more than their fair share of shelling hospitals, schools and residential property in areas loyal to Assad.
No one has ever explained why the Russians and the Syrians would intentionally attack hospitals in this way. President Assad has pointed out that it makes no sense and would be completely counterproductive for the Syrians to do so, only serving to generate hostility to his regime among the majority of Syrians who have remained loyal to him throughout the Washington sponsored ISIS uprising.
In any discussion of alleged hospital bombings in Syria, the following must always be considered.
There are no Western journalists in Jihadi controlled eastern Aleppo and scarcely anywhere else in Syria. We reported several months ago on the last independent westerners reporting from Syria. The Western journalists that are in Syria largely stick to the government controlled areas. Very occasionally the odd Western journalist travels into Jihadi controlled areas, but it is a long time since any have visited eastern Aleppo, in fact – they have not done so since it came under siege. Syrian journalists reporting from inside the rebel held area have complained of pro - rebel bias in western media reports of the conflict.
The US and the Western powers have an intelligence operation in Syria, but due to the limitations of technology it is not especially well-informed about the situation on the ground. This may be one reason why all requests the Russians have made of the US for intelligence information are refused. Whilst the hostility of the Obama administration and the Washington hawks to Russia plays the dominant role, it is possible US agencies are also reluctant to disclose how little information about the realities of the situation in Syria it actually has.
Though the Western powers and the tame Western media pretend otherwise, there is no doubt control of information in the Jihadi held areas of Syria lies with ISIS and Al-Qaeda. Both are violently anti-Western and any Western journalist entering areas they control would be risking their life. Apart from that, the days when Western media agencies employed large numbers of special correspondents, stringers and war reporters are long gone.
What that means in practical terms is that reports that come out of the Jihadi controlled areas of Syria – including eastern Aleppo – and which appear in the Western media, are reports made at second hand, usually from Jihadist propaganda because TPTB in the west have decided Assad is the guy wearing a black hat so anything even slightly suportive of his government must be lies. Western reporters do not tour the sites of the allegedly bombed hospitals. Rather the Western media is simply passing on reports alleged eye witnesses who are actually ISIS loyalists, and without questioning the substance are reporting them as verified facts. The same applies to Western governments, including the US and UK governments.
There was once a time when the Western media was careful to indicate that it was reporting unconfirmed stories or unsubstantiated allegations, or even reporting stories via a third party. 'Sources in ...' was a common phrase showing a story was not from reports that are entirely reliable or was relying on local sources in reporting the news it was publishing. Such journalistic devices told us news came from one side or another in an armed conflict and shold be read with a certain amount of scepticism.
For quite some time now, the Western media has stopped doing this. Mainstream news is no more reliable that what you read in blogs, on Russia Today or PressTV of Iran, both English language news sites staffed mainly by people whose first language is English. The BBC and CNN are particularly prone to presenting totally biased propaganda drek as factual news. Just look at the coverage of the US election provided by both these organisations.
What this means in the Syrian case is that all the reports of the attacks on the hospitals are provided by persons who to a greater or lesser extent operate under Jihadi control. In northeast Syria that essentially means Al-Qaeda contol.
None of this means that bombing of hospitals or schools has never taken place in Syria or that illegal weapons have not been used. What it does mean is that the scope for terrorist organisations like Al-Qaeda, ISIS and The Obama administration to manipulate the stories is boundless. In any war situation, there is always a high risk that the propaganda of one side or the other will be accepted, unconfirmed accounts of events by one party are often the only information available. However when the parties in question are Al-Qaeda, al Nusra front or ISIS, violent, brutal, internationally proscribed terrorist organisation, it is absolutely certain the reported events will be total fabrication.
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