The pushback against Sy Hersh's latest piece of genuine investigative journalism in which he exposes the lie that the Government of Syria hit Khan Sheikyoun with a sarin gas attack on 4 April 2017 is based on ignorance and misinformation. One of those leading this effort is Eliot Higgins, who blogs under the handle, Bellingcat. Well worth asking, Who is Eliot Higgins? According to Wikipedia:
In 2012, when Higgins began blogging the Syrian civil war, he was an unemployed finance and admin worker who spent his days taking care of his child at home; he is married to a Turkish woman. . . .
Higgins has no background or training in weapons and is entirely self-taught, saying that "Before the Arab spring I knew no more about weapons than the average Xbox owner. I had no knowledge beyond what I'd learned from Arnold Schwarzenegger and Rambo." Higgins does not speak or read Arabic.
Higgins is credited with being among the first to report on the widespread use of improvised barrel bombs by the Syrian government, a phenomenon which has spread to other troubled nations such as Iraq to combat insurgencies and opposition forces.
Ah yes, an uneducated, inexperienced guy with an opinion who happens to be married to someone of Turkish descent. Nothing unusual there, right? Of course he's an expert on sarin (sarcasm fully intended).
The fact that this gentlemen is treated as a credible source is further proof of the insanity that has taken over the public debate. He knows nothing other than what he has read. He has not been through live agent training at Fort McClellan (I have). He has no scientific background in the subject matter and no experience (other than playing video games) with actual chemical weapons (Ted Postol, who has written extensively on the subject, does have actual scientific and military expertise on the topic). Higgins knows nothing of the military doctrine for employing such weapons. He knows nothing of the process and procedures required for a military unit to safely handle, load, activate and deploy such weapons.
Actual people with such expertise look at the public accounts about what supposedly happened at Khan Sheikyoun and scratch their heads. Why?
There is no evidence, not one shred of intelligence, to show that the Syrian Air Force or Army activated their chemical weapons unit anytime prior to the alleged sarin attack at Khan Sheikyoun. If the Syrians were going to launch a chemical weapons attack they would have to go through the process of alerting that unit and issuing it orders to prepare such weapons. That also means that the chemicals (the Syrian sarin was a binary system, which means that two separate chemicals had to be mixed together in order to create an active, viable chemical capable of killing) had to be taken from storage, transported in a secure fashion with men wearing MOPP gear (an acronym for "Mission Oriented Protective Posture"). Think of a space suit. The people handling live agents, such as sarin, do so in order to ensure they do not contaminate themselves and end up dead.
It is common knowledge within the intelligence and military community that both the United States and Israel put a priority on monitoring and collecting intel on the movements of Syrians Chemical Weapons units. Why? To ensure that Israel would be forewarned and protected against a surprise attack. The nature of military grade sarin is that it requires advance preparation, planning and logistics. One does not simply pick up a hand grenade, pull the pin and launch a chemical attack. That's only in Hollywood and the X-Box of Eliot Higgins.
Then we have the so-called evidence from Khan Shiekyoun of the sarin. Ted Postol has provided an extensive and comprehensive analysis of why the conventional wisdom that this was a sarin attack is wrong (one of his articles is at this link). Those who insist that there was sarin are relying entirely on second hand evidence collected by individuals with direct ties to radical Islamic groups. Not one single independent outside observer was allowed to the scene to collect forensic evidence or examine victims. The only "victims" examined took place a couple of days later in Turkey.
But we now have video evidence that it was not sarin. Watch as the White Helmets collects samples that they boldly declare as SARIN without having performed a single scientific field test. They collect samples declaring the water, etc as SARIN!! Talk about magic.
This is all about propaganda and media manipulation. You will spot two individuals dressed up in some form of bizarre MOPP gear (they are fully covered). But that is not the case for everyone else running around, especially the knuckle heads carrying the supposed samples of deadly sarin. A simple surgical mask provides absolutely no protection whatsoever against SARIN. This is absurdity worthy of Monty Python.
So, here is the situation. Sy Hersh, a proven investigative journalist with a solid track record spanning 6 decades, has actual sources with first hand knowledge about what the U.S. military and intelligence community actually know. Hersh's reporting is attacked by Eliot Higgins, a chubby house husband who has no education nor experience in the field of chemical weapons and has no first hand sources. And who are we supposed to believe when it comes to an alleged Sarin attack? Why, Higgins of course.