The White House Report – TTG


“We have confidence in our assessment because we have signals intelligence and geospatial intelligence, laboratory analysis of physiological samples collected from multiple victims, as well as a significant body of credible open source reporting, that tells a clear and consistent story. We cannot publicly release all available intelligence on this attack due to the need to protect sources and methods, but the following includes an unclassified summary of the U.S. Intelligence Community's analysis of this attack.”

Oh, that’s slick… and a real crock. This report gives the impression that the White House has more classified evidence that can’t be exposed to protect sources and methods. That’s a reasonable impression. The IC report on the Russian attack on the 2016 election process made the same claim and suffered widespread skepticism by doing so. This is as it should be. Given the primacy of information operations and the all consuming desire to control the narrative, it’s difficult to take anybody, especially a government, at their word. If we are serious about protecting intelligence sources and methods, we must accept this conundrum as a way of life. I only accept the premise of the IC Russia report because of my ten plus years of experience with the subject matter, not because the IC said so in a report lacking any convincing evidence. But I recognize this White House report on the Syrian chemical attack of 4 April as a steaming pile of manure for precisely the same reason.

While the IC Russia report stated its classified evidence simply would not be exposed, the White House Syria report states what it used for evidence… mostly jihadi produced social media evidence. That’s fortunate because we can examine all this open source information with a critical eye. It is  curious that this is a White House report and not an IC report. Is the IC on board? I doubt it. Phil Giraldi said “that military and IC personnel intimately familiar with the available intelligence say that the narrative that Assad or Russia did it is a sham, instead endorsing the Russian narrative that Assad’s forces had bombed a storage facility.” There are few people I take at their word. Phil Giraldi is one of them. 

Of the sources cited by the White House report, only signals intelligence can be considered classified evidence. The bulk of its evidence is available for all to examine. Many have done so. I suggest we look at these and, if so inclined, do some digging ourselves.

The only new claim made by the White House report is that Syrian personnel formerly associated with SAA chemical weapons were present at Shayarat Airfield. Perhaps former SAA and SAAF chemical troops were at the airfield. These troops have undoubtedly been redeployed to other jobs throughout the Syrian forces after the Syrian chemical weapons and stores were destroyed. Was this the signals intelligence? Not too impressive. Recordings of the Syrian pilots over Khan Shaykhun would be a far more convincing piece of signals intelligence, but such evidence is not alluded to in the report.  

Geospatial intelligence is the fancy word for overhead photography and Google Maps/Google Earth. The lab analysis of blood, tissue and urine samples was provided by Turkey, the long time supporter of IS and the jihadis in Idlib. I consider that to be part of the jihadi information operation. Soil samples and debris from the suspected gas shell, which would provide much more definitive evidence, are mysteriously not available. 

Almost all other evidence is from local accounts, photos and videos provided by the Al Qaeda White Helmets and other jihadi sources. The report claims this local evidence can’t be faked. That’s a joke. A cursory review of videos and photos show unprotected “rescue workers” handling contaminated bodies with impunity, a dead child with a number on her forehead opening her eyes, an elderly man sitting on the ground having his keffiyah pulled off his head by what appears to be a film director. These are just little things that struck me. I was also struck by the many accounts of  a chlorine smell from the odorless sarin gas.

The White House report claims the rationale for a Syrian Air Force chemical attack is that Assad’s forces were in a dire military situation north of Homs. By the time of the Khan Shaykhun attack, the SAA already recaptured most of the territory lost to the jihadi Homs offensive and the Homs airport was no longer threatened. Any air attack on Khan Shaykhun, chemical or conventional, would have no military effect on the Homs front. This rationale attributed to the Syrian government by the White House is absolutely bogus. The White house report would be more believable if it claimed the gas attack was the result of a series of mistakes and miscalculations by Syrian personnel. 

The White House goes to great lengths to disparage the Russian explanation of a Syrian attack on a jihadi munitions manufacturing/storage facility. Much of this disparagement consists of dismissing the Russians as devious tricksters. Yes, the Russians are damned good at information warfare and active measures. I admire their skills and abilities at this craft. It is precisely because of this Russian expertise that I find the idea of a deliberate chemical attack perpetrated by their close ally to be ludicrous. What would be the devious objective of this attack? Surely these master tricksters would have a plan for this and would have implemented it by now. 

Perhaps the Russians will reveal some intelligence on the jihadi munitions storage/manufacturing facility at Khan Shaykhun. Maybe someone could do some geospatial intelligence analysis of this facility. I would find both, or either one, quite satisfying.


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83 Responses to The White House Report – TTG

  1. turcopolier says:

    Great help, thanks. pl

  2. Thanks TTG! Pics look like chlorine primary agent but could wrong.

  3. Old Microbiologist says:

    Semi-related to what the Russians were saying all along. Now it has apparently happened to the US coalition as well. Should this turn out to be true, and I do not put 100% confidence into Sputnik, but it is on many Russian sites, some of which are very credible, then I wonder how this will be spun?

  4. b says:

    Correcting: It is the Hama front where that defeated large al-Qaeda attack took place, not Homs.
    The argument TTG makes fits the one I published yesterday. I can’t believe that any “intelligence” agency signed of on such an assessment. It is illogical and contains zero acceptable “evidence”. Some intern at the NSC must have written that after reading Bellingcat or similar disinfo sites.
    Note that the White House paper says “the opposition” several times. It does not mention al-Qaeda once. But Khan Shaykhun is al-Qaeda territory. The Hama attack was by al-Qaeda forces under the personal direction of al-Qaeda in Syria leader al-Jolani. Pics of the planning sessions were published. But the White House says “opposition attack”.
    The inevitable conclusion: Al-Qaeda is no *officially* “the opposition” the White House supports.

  5. Yeah, Right says:

    “Soil samples and debris from the suspected gas shell, which would provide much more definitive evidence, are mysteriously not available”
    This was the point that stood out most starkly for me on first read of that report.
    Analysis of blood or tissue can tell you that sarin was the CW agent, but it can’t tell you much about how that sarin was manufactured; body chemistry gets in the way.
    A soil sample, on the other hand…….
    I think it is pretty clear that the USA has no 1st-hand incriminating evidence at all. None. Zip. Zero.
    As you state, the lab analysis of victims was supplied by Turkey, and it appears that there are no soil samples at all.
    The USA therefore is way beyond “trust us”, being more in the position of bleating “you can trust us because we trust them, ok?”.
    Which is pathetic, because the people they must trust in order to arrive at their conclusions are about as untrustworthy as it is possible to be.
    It’d be laughable if it wasn’t so serious.

  6. Degringolade says:

    This is becoming some kind of wierd.
    Thanks everyone for all the hard work. Just to add to the fire, just saw this.

  7. Mikey says:

    CNN (Barbara Starr) reported last night “(CNN)The US military and intelligence community has intercepted communications featuring Syrian military and chemical experts talking about preparations for the sarin attack in Idlib last week, a senior US official tells CNN.”

  8. Degringolade says:

    Gentlemen and Ladies:
    I am going for a long weekend of hiking and not paying any attention to the world events. Not because I am not interested, but I really cannot, for the life of me, figure out why or what or who.
    I hope to catch up in a couple of days, after things played out a little bit.
    I leave with the words of James Kunstler over at “Clusterfuck Nation”
    “There are times in the course of events when a society cannot tell what the fuck is going on, or what to do about it, and this is one of those moments in history here in the USA. The quandaries of life on the home front — how to make a living, how to care for ourselves and loved ones — get shoved aside by misadventures in foreign lands with their own quandaries. One delusion leads to another until you enter a zero gravity of the mind. Case in point du jour: Syria.”

  9. The Beaver says:

    @ Mikey
    Wonder if the IC did detect the Syrian accent !
    (just a joke with reference to Richard Engel of NBC who said that he was kidnapped by pro-Assad Shabiha)
    NBC had to fess up three years after said event when NYT went after Engel:

  10. Yeah, Right says:

    A prediction: it will eventually be revealed that the intercepted communications contain not one single, solitary mention of the words “sarin” or “chemical weapons”.
    Indeed, I suspect that when those intercepts are finally declassified then we will see that the entire conversation amounted to a discussion between Syrian planners about
    (a) the military necessity of bombing a suspected arms dump in that warehouse and
    (b) the need to inform the RuAF so that they could pass that information to the USAF via the established deconfliction channels.
    And when (if?) some intrepid reporter asks which of those recorded voices belonged to the “chemical expert” the answer will be a sheepish “err, umm, come to think of it we don’t actually know the identity of any of the people in that conversation”.
    I may be wrong, but I suspect that I’m not.

  11. Mikey says:

    US spokesman denies strike, RU MOD No information, sending drone to investigate.

  12. It’ll probably be ignored by everyone but the alt-media. And if the MSM are confronted with it somehow, they will simply claim it is Russian propaganda.

  13. Old Microbiologist says:

    It is impossible to say. Without forensic analysis and a validated chain of custody any of the currently reported results are meaningless, especially coming from Turkey. That is the same thing as relying on the Ukrainian government to investigate the downing of MH-17 yet, this seems to be the pattern of US accusations. Biological samples are misleading and only environmental samples can be used to tell the actual composition and comparison to known standardized samples already validated then an accurate and verifiable analysis can be used to establish the who’s and what’s about it. But, using social media is preposterous yet what the US continuously does. Until we see real data from a valid laboratory I distrust anything my government is saying.

  14. b says:

    That CNN nonsense is based on a single “senior U.S. official” source, not an “administration official”, not an “intelligence official”.
    “U.S. official” is press code for Congress members.
    The translated CNN text is thereby: “John McCain phoned us up and told us to write …”

  15. EEngineer says:

    If you want surreal, read Scott Adam’s blog post “The North Korea Reframe”.
    I wouldn’t be surprise if this is how Trump thinks he’s playing the game. Unfortunately, I would imagine that the Russians and Chinese see this as a transparent form of propaganda. I worry that it has been so effective and so thoroughly internalized by the members of the Borg, and the general population of the US at large, that it will take a shocking military defeat to disabuse them of the notion that this is just a “reality video game”. My fear is that would inflict a Pearl Harbor scale mental shock that could cascade into WW3.
    I just don’t see an off ramp on the highway to war. Russia and China seem to be playing for time to prepare for the eventual hostilities or for adult supervision to appear in the US. The Borg seem to be stomping on the gas…

  16. Lars says:

    A very good summation. Now it needs to be spread to the major news outlets. That may not be easy, since they have already bought the government’s version. But maybe there could be a few cracks.

  17. Daniel Nicolas says:

    regarding “the opposition” – perhaps this is better for changing the narrative of Syria vs good rebels + bad terrorists that the previous administration and their media outlets tried to sell to the American people. With their ever changing branding decisions by the multitude of various opposition groups, I’ve since given up trying to keep up with what they call themselves. Syria and the world will be better when they decide that they’d rather have peace and a vote at the ballot box in a secular government vs a fight to the death for their dream of another islamic fascist state.

  18. Fred says:

    “U.S. official” is press code for Congress members”
    I would say your decoder doesn’t list enough departments of the federal government. There are neo-cons throughout that would be happy to be CNN sources.

  19. Valissa says:

    It’s clear now… Trump has been assimilated.
    Of course, this was always highly likely to occur. The president is the head of the US establishment, therefore no matter what is said during election season, the herding power of the establishment is strong due to it’s overall immensity of power and influence.
    In order for Trump to be more successful at achieving his initial goals based on his campaign promises (which involved challenging the establishment) there would have to have been a significant minority within the establishment who agreed with those goals. Some of us thought that might be the case, but given the incredible institutional resistance to those goals and in light of current events that does not seem to be the case.
    This article has a fairly complete list of Trump’s new positions versus his old ones. It mentions that Bannon opposed US action in Syria. Bannon probably is aware it was a false flag and probably would agree with TTG’s most excellent reporting here. I know some here are rejoicing in his loss of influence, along with the MSM chorus, but the more his influence wanes and the more the liberal globalist faction gains power, the faster Trump becomes a version of Hillary.
    The Daily 202: Trump’s lurch toward corporatism, globalism shows why Bannon’s marginalization matters
    In fact, the best way to understand all the shifts is that Bannon has lost his turf war with the president’s son-in-law and a coterie of super-rich New York bankers whose affirmation Trump yearns for. The former head of Breitbart News opposed intervention in Syria and privately sees these nods to Wall Street as a betrayal of the president’s core base of support that got him elected. To be sure: Every president flip-flops or “evolves,” as they always prefer to put it.
    … The D.C. establishment is, for the most part, giddy about Trump selling out his core supporters. Many country club Republicans are celebrating what they believe is a move toward “the mainstream.” (Translation: embracing the business community’s agenda.)
    When Obama similarly caved to the establishment following his election, some supporters described him as playing 11th dimensional chess in order to sneakily accomplish something the rest of the establishment didn’t want. There is a similar meme using 12th dimensional chess, but that is used snarkily rather than earnestly.
    Both Bush and Obama were eventually assimilated following their elections. Despite running on very different political platforms, and having very different personalities, they ended up following the same foreign policies as their predecessors.
    Between the power of establishment groupthink and the immense bureaucratic inertia of a yuuuuge gov’t bureaucracy and the normal human desire for the approval of one’s group members I don’t see how any one person or small group of people can bring significant change.

  20. smoke says:

    FWIW On 8 Apr Robert Parry reported:
    “…on Friday, a source told me that Pompeo had personally briefed Trump on April 6 about the CIA’s belief that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad was likely not responsible for the lethal poison-gas incident in northern Syria two days earlier.”
    Parry says he regarded this information as dubious. But when the photo was issued of Trump and his advisors, reportedly gathered to decide attack on Homs base, Parry noted, as did NYT, that no one representing IC was shown. Does this add weight to his source’s report? wonders Parry.
    More disingenuous excuses for confrontation. Must the struggle for control of the public narrative take precedence over any concern for facts or understanding?

  21. Mikey says:

    I read on a headchopper news website the other day that the headchoppers monitored the radio communications of Syrian warplanes. They claim to have intercepted the comms of the SU-22 that morning. I’m presuming this would be unencrypted VHF TACAIR comms.

  22. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Also the instruments have to have been identically calibrated.

  23. Babak Makkinejad says:

    not assimilated; rather, manipulated.

  24. wisedupearly says:

    If the Govt. is really serious about stopping WMD attacks why did it hit just about everything except the “sarin facility” which DOD said was there? Can’t be because their stated reason “did not to release a cloud of toxic gas”.
    Binary weapon, lots of Govt. experts have just claimed that attack could not have been a Syrian bomb into rebel warehouse because precursors were not mixed. So one missile, just one, takes out the facility. If sarin is released, well, its a military base and the base would have the necessary CW gear as they are claimed to have known that Assad had used sarin. If they don’t have the gear tough turkey. They knew they shouldn’t have had the sarin. Base is pretty isolated not in major civilian area. So some soldiers die of the banned chemical they were not supposed to have. What better proof and what better deterrent can there be? Instead of Russian TV touring the base the CW suits would be out. And that lot of sarin would be gone. Point, no forceful demands that the sarin be bagged and tagged for destruction?
    The weaknesses of the arguments being advanced are staggering. Its almost as if the Admin did not do it but suspects that someone / some group important in American life did. The coverup is usually what fails.

  25. WarrenPeese says:


    The US military and intelligence community has intercepted communications featuring Syrian military and chemical experts talking about preparations for the sarin attack in Idlib last week, a senior US official tells CNN.

    Both Mattis and Tillerson used the phrasing “no doubt”. Given Trump’s ealier reticence to get involved in Syria, why would they lie about it?

  26. Valissa says:

    “The American people bought that war. War is show business.” (said by Robert Di Niro’s character in clip below)
    Distract the public, justify the war machine – Wag the Dog (1997)
    Another clip from later in the movie
    Wag the Dog
    On a more serious note… even if Trump knew it was a false flag, I don’t think he would have acted any differently given the pressure cooker he’s in. Once that propaganda op got released to the press with a public that’s been primed for more than 5 years about how evil Assad is, and given the Borg’s ongoing propaganda campaign trying to tie Trump to Russia, and given the pushback Trump has gotten from his war on the IC, what else could he have done? Once again attack the IC? Not in his interest for so many reasons.
    He needed a psychological victory and for the establishment to support him in something. So a somewhat lame attack was made on Syria. And it worked for his reputation among the Borg. The truth and reality are rarely relevant to the Borg, except when it makes them look good.

  27. The Beaver says:

    Read and laugh (or cry)
    Yep, as if Assad was on the defensive and the Zionist w/ an agenda work with the CIA (like Katz from SITE)

  28. Valissa says:

    Yes, Babak, that is technically correct.
    But the classic Star Trek phrase is….
    “we are Borg… you will be assimilated

  29. I am afraid you are right about that. Resistance was futile. The only slight hope I see is that rather than the Next Generation episodes with the Borg, we think of the Voyager episodes in which at least one Borg was reintegrated into human society, at least in some degree.
    But mostly, I have little hope that very many people are left who want to resist the Borg or who can even recognize when they have become assimilated themselves.

  30. Babak Makkinejad says:

    I have expurgated references to Star Trek from my vocabulary lest people think I am a geezer and knew Abraham Lincoln personally.

  31. Mikey says:

    ‘There Are No Good Options In Syria,’ Sighs Man Who Has Devoted 12 Minutes Of Research To Topic–55758
    Six minutes more than the President has devoted to the subject.

  32. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Syria is not a War:
    Bardo Music, recorded live in Damascus and Aleppo, September 1996

  33. JurisV says:

    Thanks TTG !
    And I would recommend the rather nicely done and thorough review of the “Un-Classified” Report from the WhiteHouse by Theodore Postol, which I think is an excellent try at doing what anyone who is interested in TRUTH would do — an analysis of available information. The link is:
    It’s nicely written in a style that I (being an old engineer/scientist in the aerospace business) really appreciated. And sufficient pictures and charts, etc.

  34. Macgupta123 says:

    Bellingcat raises the issue that the first photos/video of gas attack victims occurred some 5 hours before the aerial bombardment that might have hit a rebel chemical weapons storage facility.

  35. turcopolier says:

    There was extensive planning for a non CW strike at this placed. pl

  36. WarrenPeese says:

    Then why the communications between Syrian military and “chemical experts”?

  37. John_Frank says:

    FYI A number of items that people may find of value.
    As previously posted, the UN – OPCW joint investigative mechanism has determined that both the Syrian Arab Armed Forces and ISIS have launched chemical weapons attacks in the past.
    To learn more, people may wish to read the following reports submitted to the UN Security Council:
    24 August 2016 – Third report of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons-United Nations Joint Investigative Mechanism (SG letter)
    21 October 2016 – Fourth report of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons-United Nations Joint Investigative Mechanism (Letter)
    13 February 2017 – Fifth report of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons-United Nations Joint Investigative Mechanism (Letter)
    In the case of the Syrian Arab Armed Forces the chemical weapon was “toxic chemicals” and with ISIS it was “sulfar mustard.”
    There have been multiple incident reports of the use of chemical weapons on the Syrian battle field since 2013 as further detailed at and
    (UOSSM stands for Union of Medical Care and Relief Organizations.)
    Also, although not directly related, people may recall that on September 19, 2016 a relief convoy scheduled to go into Aleppo was attacked and all of the supplies were destroyed.
    In response the Secretary General set up a board of inquiry to investigate. People may find the following report of interest:
    19 December 2016 – Summary by the Secretary-General of the report of the United Nations Headquarters Board of Inquiry into the incident involving a relief operation to Urum al-Kubra, Syrian Arab Republic, on 19 September 2016 (letter)
    There has been no finding made as to whether the designated terror organization once known as Al Nusrah Front has launched any chemical weapons attacks.
    While the OPCW found that sarin gas was used in the 2013 Ghouta attack, no official determination was made as to who carried out the attack, in part because that was beyond the scope of the OPCW mandate.
    As to the claimed chemical weapons attack on April 4 in Khan Sheikhoun, earlier today Reuters reported that:
    Chemical weapons experts in Turkey to investigate alleged Syrian sarin attack: Sources
    While all the focus has been on the use of sarin gas, according to a press release issued by Doctors without Borders on April 5, their medical teams on the ground observed victims at a number of different medical facilities from the claimed attack “smelled of bleach indicative of possible exposure to chlorine” as well as some victims at one medical facility “displayed symptoms consistent with exposure to an agent sarin gas or similar compounds.”
    People can read the press release using the following link:
    Further, in seeking to sort out what happened, people may find the following reports of some interest.
    The first is an interview of Martin Chulov, The Guardian Middle East correspondent on April 7 of value.
    His reporting is being relied upon by many of those saying the Syrian Arab Armed Forces carried out a chemical weapons attack on April 4 and in the interview Mr. Chulov provides a summary of what information they have gathered concerning the attack. He also discloses that the Guardian has sent a reported to visit Khan Sheikhoun.
    The second is a report published by Syria direct on April 5:
    Idlib town reels following major chemical attack: ‘No rebel positions, just people’
    (It is fair to say that the orientation of those who work for Syria direct is towards the West.)
    The third is the transcript of an interview granted by the Syrian President to the AFP’s Beirut Bureau Chief on April 12:
    Transcript of exclusive AFP interview with Syria’s Assad
    In the interview, the AFP correspondent asks Syria’s President about a claim that 20% of the Syrian Air Force was destroyed due to the missile strike. During a joint press briefing on April 11, Defense Secretary Mattis clarified that he meant 20 aircraft were destroyed. People can read a transcript of that briefing at the following link.
    Press Conference by Secretary Mattis and Gen. Votel in the Pentagon Briefing Room
    ICYMI, near the beginning, Secretary Mattis states:
    “Last Tuesday on the 4th of April, the Syrian regime attacked its own people using chemical weapons. I have personally reviewed the intelligence, and there is no doubt the Syrian regime is responsible for the decision to attack and for the attack itself.”
    Also, Reuters has published a report summarizing the key points made by President al-Assad in the AFP interview:
    Syria’s Assad says Idlib chemical attack ‘fabrication’: AFP interview
    As to today’s report by the Syrian Arab Armed Forces distributed by the Syrian state media alleging an attack on an ISIS chemical weapons depot in Deir ez-Zor resulting in scores of deaths:
    U.S. denies hitting Islamic State poison gas depot with air strike
    According to the wire report published by Reuters Canada:
    ‘Responding to Thursday’s Syrian army claim, U.S. Air Force Colonel John Dorrian, a spokesman for the coalition, said it had carried out no air strikes in the area of Deir al-Zor at the time.
    “The Syrian claim is incorrect and likely intentional misinformation,” Dorrian said in an email to Reuters.
    The Russian defence ministry said it had no information about people killed in an attack by international coalition forces in Deir al-Zor, according to RIA news agency. A ministry spokesman said Russian forces had sent drones to check the area.’
    In addition, in the same report we are told:
    The British delegation at the world’s chemical weapons watchdog said samples taken from the alleged attack site tested positive for the nerve agent sarin.
    “We believe it is highly likely that the attack was carried out by the Assad regime,” British Prime Minister Theresa May said in a televised statement. “Apart from anything else, we believe it’s only the regime that has the capability to make such an attack.”

  38. JurisV says:

    I forgot to mention what I thought was an extremely important point he made regarding a shallow crater with a flattened and damaged “pipe” (he said it was around 122mm –same diam as a rather common rocket). here’s my favorite paragraph which discusses the photo of a shallow crater and the pipe remnants within it and what he thinks is a reasonable conclusion from this – with caveats.
    >(quote)No competent analyst would assume that the crater cited as the source of the sarin attack was unambiguously an indication that the munition came from an aircraft. No competent analyst would assume that the photograph of the carcass of the sarin canister was in fact a sarin canister. Any competent analyst would have had questions about whether the debris in the crater was staged or real. No competent analyst would miss the fact that the alleged sarin canister was forcefully crushed from above, rather than exploded by a munition within it. All of these highly amateurish mistakes indicate that this White House report, like the earlier Obama White House Report, was not properly vetted by the intelligence community as claimed. < (end quote)

  39. Thirdeye says:

    The Independent, Reuters, and TASS are the sources for this fresh Wikipedia article on the Hatla airstrike. Descriptions of a white cloud turning yellow are remarkably consistent with descriptions of the Khan Shaykhun cloud.

  40. Alaric says:

    Any thoughts on the claim the US is readying to send 10,000 to 50,000 troops to Syria?

  41. Peter AU says:

    TTG The old man and the scarf you mention also appears in other white helmet productions.
    From what I can make of it, a number of people were gassed in a quarry and then white helmet actors (survivors of the attack) were placed amongst them at different points in the videos.

  42. wisedupearly says:

    Hot from the presses.
    A senior US official told CNN “We heard them planning a sarin attack in Idlib but decided that telling the world and all those little children would be counter-productive and give the kids bad dreams.”
    You can’t have it both ways. You can’t be omnipotent and then claim moral high ground.

  43. JerseyJeffersonian says:

    Why would they lie? In short, careerism. If lying improves their prospects for enrichment in NeoCon think tanks, the MIC, and such, in times to come, well, they’re down with that. What are the downsides, after all? Look at how things have worked out for other grand liars and war mongers in recent years, and wonder no more about why they would lie about it.
    It is indeed saddening that things have come to such a pass, but in my estimation, they surely have.

  44. JurisV says:

    My apologies for this redundant posting regarding Dr Postol’s critical piece on the Whitehouse Document. Missed entirely the post that’s directly below from yesterday.

  45. Kooshy says:

    IMO President Trump either got a horse head in his bed or he was lying on what he said he want to do from the get go. Considering this fast pace of full180 degree revirsal on polices he announced during the campaign, I tend to believe he got an offer from the Borg he couldn’t refuse. IMO what he is doing don’t make sense and or will not help him at all, this is, since the Borgistas will never want him or will ever trust him, in the meantime he is loosing his base, likes of Taylor. Not that he doesn’t know this, but I don’t think he has any better choice with 35% popularity than playing along with Borg.

  46. WarrenPeese says:

    Trump was the most anti-neocon candidate relative to all the others, including Hillary and except for maybe Rand Paul. It isn’t plausible that he had a sudden conversion to the McCain wing.

  47. ked says:

    Reports of any kind out of the Trump regime’s DC ops center should carry the same weight as those from the Pentagon’s Office of Special Plans circa 2002.

  48. wisedupearly says:

    McCain, front and center. March 6, 2017
    “Just a matter of days after John McCain’s “unusual” trip to Syria and Turkey, the Turkish government has cut off water supplies from the Euphrates River into northern Syria, violating international conventions on water rights.”
    Photo of McCain and various “characters” caption reads
    “Sen. John McCain visited rebels in Syria on Monday, his communications director confirmed to CNN, making the Arizona Republican the highest ranking elected official from the United States to visit the war-torn country since its civil war began over two years ago.”

  49. Alaric says:

    Is it possible that trump is making moves to force Russia, in particular, to end the Syrian war already? Russia and Iran have allowed this to drag on, perhaps because the ensuing chaos/immigration has benefitted them. They could and should end it.
    That would be very clever of trump and he doesn’t strike me as all that clever.

  50. Marko says:

    Whether or not the Hatla account is verified , we know the U.S. and coalition forces have bombed suspected CW facilities in the past , most notoriously the Sudan pharmaceutical plant in Bill’s ” wag-the-dog ” moment. There was also a huge 50-strike bombing run on an ISIS CW facility in Mosul and strikes on Mosul University facilities believed to be engaged in CW-related activities.
    So , using America as the Gold Standard of allowable wartime activities , Syria is off the hook for any unfortunate fallout from their attack on the suspected CW warehouse. What remains is to determine the perpetrator of the single anomalous event – the pothole-sized road crater with the remains of a small delivery canister/cylinder – which seems the likely candidate for the sarin component of the attack.
    I believe sarin was used. I believe this was a well-planned false-flag event , intended to focus global outrage squarely at Assad , and without the sarin , this attack is just run-of-the-mill , for the reasons described just above.

  51. Marko says:

    It wouldn’t be at all surprising , nor cause for suspicion , that the military would consult with CW experts before bombing a suspected CW facility. This , to me , seems obvious.
    That’s why we’ll never hear the details of those conversations.

  52. Valissa says:

    Kooshy, I have seen interviews of Trump going back to the 80’s and he has basically had the same criticisms of US policies since then. His thoughts on solutions to the problems he perceived have also been consistent since the ’80s.
    Therefore I don’t think he was lying. I think he very much believed what he said when he campaigned and believed he could accomplish those goals. All presidents run on particular campaign issues and then have to deal with the realities and constraints of the job and pre-existing power structures and trends. Most campaign promises are not kept regardless of party. You may recall the various pundits making fun of Trump or castigating him for attempting to keep his campaign promises.

  53. AK says:

    “More disingenuous excuses for confrontation. Must the struggle for control of the public narrative take precedence over any concern for facts or understanding?”
    I believe the answer to that question is a resounding, “YES”. We have not had a fact-based foreign policy for at least a generation.

  54. Peter AU says:

    Side by side images of old man in scarf from seperate white helmet productions.
    Perhaps another ID’d here. The man with the twins, who seemed to change his clothes from one shot to the next at the cemetery.

  55. Peter AU says:

    The father burying twins scene. Several shots or stills of him holding the twins at the cemetery (headstones behind him) before they are buried, then shots of him being led away in grief after the burial, but in different clothes?

  56. Mikey says:

    Not an expert on this subject, but wouldn’t soil samples taken at the 120mm casing also indicate whether this was the method of delivery of the unknown poison gas? The sarin indicators should be elevated in the area near the casing. Of course the crime scene has not been secured so the possibility of tampering also exists.

  57. kooshy says:

    Valissa, Thank you for your comment, I also know and did business for many years with another Donald with much the same mentality, ego, hubris and maybe as rich, that’s Sterling, previous owner of LA Clippers. Men like him, will do anything and pay any price for their ego, survival and specially to win no matter what. As I wrote, IMO Mr. Trump was given an offer by Borg he understood he could not refuse, he thinks he can survive his job, reversing himself and folding to Borg’ demands. IMO, Borg operates much like mafia (like losing credit with Banks), they will never trust him again, for what he said and did to their choice candidate, they are probably right, knowing he has no loyalty to anyone except himself.

  58. TonyL says:

    I don’t think Trump believes in anything. He is a conman. He said whatever to get himself elected. Now he is doing whatever to keep him in office and earn the accolades from the Borgs. The presidency is just a mean to satisfy his ego, and enrich his brand.

  59. charly says:

    It is not the sarin itself that is interesting but the byproducts. It shows how the sarin was produced and its age.

  60. Valissa says:

    Tony, consider the possibility that it’s not an either/or situation. Everyone believes in something, so your 1st sentence is merely whining because you don’t like him. Human beings are complex and generally inconsistent in the application of their beliefs. Anyone who runs for president has to have a huge ego and “flexibility” in their political beliefs given the ambition that drives them, and their desire for a legacy.
    If you expect something different you are naïve.

  61. Chris Chuba says:

    WarrenPeese, “a senior US official” is the source for CNN regarding the SIGINT, not Mattis or Tillerson. Maybe Mattis / Tillerson have ‘no doubt’ because of the video with the White Helmets spraying water on the survivors. Why people look at the same thing and come to different conclusions, is someone lying?
    Our government has lied about SIGINT before. Ronald Reagan, who I trust more than DT on his best day, had the intercepted radio communication between the Russian Jet that shot down KAL-007 and the air traffic controller edited down to make it look like it was intentional when it was clearly a mistake. The pilot tried to warn what he thought was a spy plane to land but Reagan played the bad version before the U.N. to make them look like monsters. Sounds familiar.
    We do not have the transcript of what is in the SIGINT, I’d love to see it.

  62. Yeah, Right says:

    Note that if you look at the latest article by Publius Tacitus you will see a photo of some dude collecting samples from that crater (“Figure 1”).
    So we know that environmental samples were taken, yet there is no mention by the White House that such samples exist and are being tested.

  63. TonyL says:

    I did not vote for either Clinton or Trump in the last election. IMO, you are still hoping Mr Trump will turn out to be the type of leader you wanted him to be. But if you have read enough about his business dealings and his conduct as a person, you would have come come to the same conclusion as I did.

  64. Walrus says:

    i say again, a coalition of the willing is going into syria. the “warning orders to expect warning orders” went out last week.

  65. Marko says:

    “We believe it is highly likely that the attack was carried out by the Assad regime,” British Prime Minister Theresa May said in a televised statement. “Apart from anything else, we believe it’s only the regime that has the capability to make such an attack.”
    Not counting , of course , the Trump regime , the Netanyahu regime , the Erdogan regime , the May regime , the Hollande regime , the Al Saud regime , the…..

  66. confusedponderer says:

    In my rehabilitation hospital where I spent half of last year they had swimming baths.
    Water for such things needs to be clean kept, and for that chlorine is used a lot. Sometimes when they used it there was the smell of chlorine in the air. The scent is unforgetable. Reminded me of my army time and the stuff I learned there about C stuff.
    In the Reha, there was a storage room in the cellar where they held the substance, and at its door they had a gas mask holder for a mask that provided filter and full eye protection (chlorine would vitriolize eyes, harming eye sight – blind you wouldn’t find your way to flee).
    It always felt creepy when going along that door and I always was happy to get out of that cellar.
    That written, from what I read, stuff like chlorine was apparently used by ISIS and/or Al Quaeda folks repeatedly in Iraq (emphasis mine).
    “Iraqi officials have shown the BBC footage, which they say proves Islamic State militants are using chlorine gas in roadside bomb attacks.

    The bombs contain small concentrations of a chemical agent and in open ground are unlikely to be lethal.
    Experts say they are designed to create fear rather than harm.
    There have been multiple reports that IS has been deploying chlorine gas since late last year, but Iraqi officials say their footage confirms its use.
    Haider Taher, from the Iraq Bomb Disposal Team, said troops have defused dozens of devices containing chlorine as part of the offensive against the militants.
    “They have resorted to this new method,” he told the BBC…”
    That much for the view that any use of gas clearly implicates the guilt of Assad.

  67. Nancy K says:

    He lied throughout the campaign, why did you think he would stop once elected. He is not a man rooted in solid ground, he seems to have few deep and abiding principles. He is a hollow man.

  68. turcopolier says:

    IMO as a layman he has a number of “learning disabilities” and is over-compensated for them. Some kind of autism, Asperger’s syndrome, dyslexia? pl

  69. turcopolier says:

    Warren Peese
    I don’t think Trump is anything like an intellectual. He has no fixed opinions, only attitudes. IMO every day is a new day for him and he reacts to the current situation.

  70. turcopolier says:

    Warren Peese
    There was an ongoing risk analysis of the likelihood of the present of lethal chemicals on the target. The same thing was going on on the US side. pl

  71. Eric Newhill says:

    MY SWMBO agrees with you. She used to work with children who have “speech production issues”, as it is called professionally, and she sees it clearly. Sometimes such people have intellects that intake things from a different,interesting and correct, perspective than most others. Sometimes they don’t.

  72. kooshy says:

    Nancy, I only voted for Mr. Trump for only one reason regardless of who he was and what he said, that was to defeat Clintons. I had mentioned this many time, for that and the only choice I had i am not sorry.

  73. Valissa says:

    I have said this numerous times at this blog… I did not vote for Trump. These days I vote 3rd party for president. I voted for Gary Johnson.

  74. mikey says:

    I made my previous comment concerning the method of delivery because I’m skeptical that this crater and its contents are related to the alleged chemical attack.

  75. wisedupearly says:

    There was no “communication about sarin”, there are no “chemical experts”.
    The administration’s comment of chemical experts is meant to scare us but merely achieves the opposite. For the comment to be taken seriously, it means that the admin is saying that it knows who is who in Syria. IE Col. Ahmed is CW, they know where he works, they know the structure of his command, and they have known since he took the job. All Syrian comm related to Col. Ahmed is automatically filtered and flagged. This means that we knew of Syrian plan before it happened. We didn’t, there is no Col Ahmed, there is no sarin. Or do you want to believe our govt. did nothing to prevent the attack? Your choice: this administration is lying to you or this administration is complicit in the attack.

  76. All,
    Gareth Porter says the Russians provided 24 hour advanced warning of a strike on a munitions warehouse in Khan Shaykhun to the U.S. military through the established coordination channel. This communication included Syria’s belief that the warehouse contained toxic chemicals. The full article is at the website. This is the kind of thing the Russians should put out there with documentation.

  77. Yeah, Right says:

    That poor, poor man….. how unlucky can one old guy be, hey?
    I bet nobody wants to stand next to him when there’s lightning about…..

  78. Yeah, Right says:

    Thanks for the link, very interesting.
    I assume that the “former US official” mentioned in that article isn’t Pat Lang, because if it is then there is a danger of this site and truth-out becoming a self-referential echo-chamber.

  79. turcopolier says:

    Yeah, Right
    It is not me. pl

  80. Richard Ong says:

    Perhaps the United States can be prevailed upon to end the war in Syria. The U.S. has allowed this to drag on. We can and should end it.

  81. turcopolier says:

    Richard Ong
    How do you suggest we “end it?” pl

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