Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
December 19, 2016

Syria - Killing Journos Enabled "Media Activist" Domination - Intended Effect?

As pointed out yesterday, a recent tweet series by Club des Cordeliers made some interesting observation about the #StandWithAleppo propaganda campaign:

The "Stand with Aleppo" campaign in the U.S. was started and is propelled by a Democratic party operative who is also CEO of a public relations company and "strategic affairs consultant" in Chicago, Becky Carroll.

The Cordeliere made some additional remarks on anti-Syria propaganda. These about the U.S. directed Information Warfare campaign from inside Syria. This leads me to the thoughts below about the U.S. waged Unconventional Warfare in Syria and how it may be responsible for the elimination of "neutral" journalists on the ground.

We start with Club des Cordeliers remarks on the video campaign coming out of Syria and currently especially out of east-Aleppo:

US State Dep't has openly trained Syrian "activists" in social media propaganda techniques since 2012. U.S. Embassy Geneva, Aug 21, 2012 U.S. Equipment, Training Reaching Syrian Opposition:
The State Department has $25 million in nonlethal assistance that it can use for training purposes, and [State Department spokeswoman Victoria] Nuland said “a broad cross section of activists” inside Syria and in neighboring countries is benefiting from an “extremely active” U.S. training effort that is focused on Syrians who have not left their country.

“We are doing training on free media, countering the government’s circumvention technology, legal and justice and accountability issues, and how to deal with the crimes that have been committed during this conflict, programs for student activists who are encouraging peaceful protest on the university campuses, [and] programs for women,” Nuland said.

She added that the State Department has been working for years with Syrians and others on ways to counter Internet censorship, as well as supporting Syrian human rights and justice programs.

US trained Syrian contra propagandists via seminars conducted in Istanbul. St.Louis Public Radio, Dec 3, 2012 U.S. Steps Up Aid (But No Arms) To Syrian Exiles:
[T]he U.S. State Department is supporting Syria's political opposition, in projects that have been under wraps until recently.

One program, a multimillion-dollar media project called Basma, or "fingerprint" in English, is run out of an office in Istanbul where Syrian activists write and produce reports for a Facebook page and the Basma website. A promotional video explains the goals of Basma: "to support a peaceful transition for a new Syrian nation that supports and guards the freedom of all of its citizens."
In another U.S.-funded program, kept quiet over security concerns, young activists, mostly those in the front lines in the early days of the revolt, are invited to Istanbul for workshops. They gather in hotels, from towns and villages inside Syria. They are now members of revolutionary councils — civilians trying to restore services and local government in places out of regime control.

Syrian "activists" given electronic equipment & technical instruction in State Dep't-sponsored Istanbul trainings. Wired, Oct 25, 2012 Exclusive: U.S. Rushes to Stop Syria from Expanding Chemical Weapon Stockpile:
U.S. intelligence agencies are believed to be helping with the training of opposition groups, while the Pentagon denies shipping arms to the rebels. In public, American aid has largely been limited to organizational advice (Washington is trying to set up a council of opposition leaders in Doha in the next few weeks, for instance) and technical assistance. Several hundred Syrian activists have traveled to Istanbul for training in secure communications, funded by the U.S. State Department. The rebel leaders received tips on how to leapfrog firewalls, encrypt their data, and use cellphones without getting caught, as Time magazine recently reported. Then they returned to Syria, many of them with new phones and satellite modems in hand.
To NATO military strategists, social media propaganda is element of "winning the online information war" in Syria. Small Wars Journal, Apr 26, 2016 The Impact of Cyber Capabilities in the Syrian Civil War:
The events of the Syrian Civil War have clearly demonstrated the power of cyber capabilities in warfare. [...] However, it would appear that all of the actors have used cyber capabilities for propaganda purposes. The use of social media, DDoS attacks, and the defacement of websites were all used to promote strategic narrative or to undermine and embarrass the enemy. Although all of these activities would fall under the category of information war, developments in social technology has increased the importance of winning the online information war. This is illustrated by the fact that most of the information that the public receives about the conflict is transmitted through social media.
Revealing chart outlining US Army Special Ops doctrine on use of electronic communication in unconventional warfare. FM 3-05.130 Unconventional Warfare, Sep 2008 Table B-1 - Information operations integration into joint operations (pdf)
Highly influential 1989 paper on Fourth Generation Warfare (4GW) called for technology-driven psychological warfare. Marine Corp Gazette, Oct 1989 The Changing Face of War - Into the 4th Generation (pdf)

All this is to make clear that there is nothing random or organic about online propaganda produced by Syrian "activists."
Bana hoax, Aleppo "farewell" videos, et al. should be seen as coordinated, strategic information warfare funded and organized by US actors.

Some additional thoughts on this.

A recent piece by Patrick Cockburn in the Independent points to the mass of propaganda about and out of Syria, mostly U.S. directed as shown above, and explains why we only see and hear this and nothing else: There's more propaganda than news coming out of Aleppo this week:

[T]he jihadis holding power in east Aleppo were able to exclude Western journalists, who would be abducted and very likely killed if they went there, and replace them as news sources with highly partisan “local activists” who cannot escape being under jihadi control.
The precedent set in Aleppo means that participants in any future conflict will have an interest in deterring foreign journalists who might report objectively. By kidnapping and killing them, it is easy to create a vacuum of information that is in great demand and will, in future, be supplied by informants sympathetic to or at the mercy of the very same people (in this case the jihadi rulers of east Aleppo) who have kept out the foreign journalists. Killing or abducting the latter turns out to have been a smart move by the jihadis because it enabled them to establish substantial control of news reaching the outside world.

We have to see the killing and kidnapping of journalists as a (secret) part of the arsenal of the Unconventional Warfare and the U.S. created propaganda storm out of Syria.

The same applies to humanitarian Non-Government Organizations. Neither the United Nations, nor the Red Cross or any other neutral NGO had staff in east-Aleppo. Only the MI-6 propaganda outlet SOHR in Coventry provides numbers allegedly sourced from Syria. Only (U.S. trained) "media activists" on the Takfiri side report or tweet from inside east-Aleppo. Only these get interviewed. Only the U.S./UK created and directed "White Helmets" and the French government sponsored Takfiri "Aleppo Media Channel" produce pictures and videos from inside east-Aleppo. As this was the only available information source and sole available audio-visual material it was heavily used by news outlets around the world. It reflected solely the armed oppositions and its sponsors' views and warfare needs.

If one intends to give a maximum effect to the propaganda output of ones proxies in an Information Warfare operation, it makes great sense to eliminate all other potential sources of information from the wider warzone. Thus - the abduction and killing of neutral professional journalists is a conscious process that enables their replacement with ones own Information Warfare assets. I believe we have seen such a process in Syria.

A similar process was applied earlier when the U.S. invaded Iraq. News outlets which gave a different than the official U.S. view were targeted by U.S. military forces. The Al-Jazeerah offices in Baghdad were bombed by the U.S. military. (The White House even considered bombing the Al-Jazeerah head office in Doha, Qatar.) Wikileaks published a video which showed a U.S. helicopter killing Reuters staffers. Only journalists embedded with the U.S. military were protected against U.S. military action. Their reports were naturally heavily skewed towards the official U.S. propaganda view.

(On top of all of that we have to consider that even regular news outlets and journalists are often vehicles of intelligence services and as such far from neutral.)

The killing or abduction of journalists in a war zone allows their replacement with better controlled and more partisan assets. Just raising the (security) costs for real journalists has such an effect. A news outlet has to pay for professionally made news agency photos or videos. The U.S./UK propaganda operation "White Helmets" has produced hundreds of "gripping" and "emotional" staged rescue operation pictures and videos. It distributes those for free in "ready to be used" high quality. Many news outlets prefer these no-cost pictures even though their veracity is highly questionable.

Keeping journalists away from the battle zone by killing or abducting a few of them at the beginning of the conflict helped enormously to increase the effect of the later Information Warfare operation known as "White Helmets" and other similar organizations.

This brings me back to U.S. Embassy Geneva report quoted above. In the very same speech in which U.S. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland lauded the creation, training and outfitting of U.S proxy teams for propaganda creation and other purposes (aka "media activists") she also lamented the demise of real journalists in Syria:

State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland told reporters August 21 that the United States has provided more than 900 sets of communications gear to groups and individuals inside Syria.
Nuland also offered condolences to the family of Japanese journalist Mika Yamamoto, who was killed August 20 while she was traveling with Syrian opposition forces in Aleppo, according to the Japanese Foreign Ministry.

Yamamoto, who worked for the Tokyo-based Japan Press, was caught in gunfire, the Foreign Ministry said.

Nuland also said the U.S. government had lost contact with two stringers reporting for the Alhurra television network who had reportedly been traveling with Yamamoto.

In an August 21 interview with the Voice of America, Reporters Without Borders spokeswoman Soazig Dollet said five foreign journalists have been killed since the start of the Syrian uprising in March 2011, and that Syria “is now the most dangerous place for war reporter[s] in the world.”

The lauding of U.S. proxy media efforts and the (fake) lamenting over the killing of real journalists by Victoria Nuland in one speech were totally unrelated to each other - unless they were not. It was totally unintended that the resulting lack of real journalists in Syria amplified the effect of the U.S. Information Operation by proxy. Or maybe it was not.

Posted by b on December 19, 2016 at 18:15 UTC | Permalink

next page »

thanks b... the whole thing is quite sickening, but makes total sense here... white helmets have been a clear example.. murdering journalists with an alternative angle comes out of a depraved place and points back to creeps like nuland..

Posted by: james | Dec 19 2016 18:30 utc | 1

Where is west condemning the terrorist act of killing the russian ambassador? Or is this what the west want with its anti russian propaganda?


Posted by: Lionshare | Dec 19 2016 18:34 utc | 2

Although killing journos is part of the war package, I doubt that keeping the western journos unharmed would have any different effect on the current narrative or the total omission of significant events in Syria and beyond.

Btw: the Russian ambassador to Turkey has just been murdered by a Turkish police officer. Erdogan of course blames it on Gulen. Could it be more sinister and is it revenge for the losses in Syria or an operation by the likes of Doha, Ryad, Tel Aviv, London, Langley, Ankara, ... ?

Posted by: ope | Dec 19 2016 18:51 utc | 3

Great piece again, b. I'll go a bit further in your last thoughts about:

"...Keeping journalists away from the battle zone by killing or abducting a few of them at the beginning of the conflict helped enormously to increase the effect of the later Information Warfare operation known as "White Helmets" and other similar organizations..."

Informing 'opposition' of journalists' whereabouts so they can be captured or killed is very much a part of the U.S. Special Ops 'doctrine' on Information Warfare. Nobody can prove anything, of course, but this has been widely practiced ever since Viet Nam and greatly expanded during Iraq. The other dirty part of U.S. propaganda is preventing opposing views from being considered. That may not involve direct assassination of journalists (although that has probably been used, intimidating journalists from ever reporting opposing views is far more effective. I do remember the U.S. during Iraq was very persistent about explaining the great risk of rape and torture for journalists that refused their 'protection'. "Sure you're free to go wherever and report what you want. Where do you want your remains sent when we find you?"

Propaganda and information control are reliable tools of a failing, evil state.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Dec 19 2016 18:58 utc | 4

Speaking of the shooting in Ankara, RT is now reporting this: Shooting near US Embassy in Ankara after Russian ambassador to Turkey shot, killed ‒ reports.

I happen to have been in that U.S. embassy in Ankara. It's in the diplomatic quarter, on Cinnah Caddesi, north of the downtown.

RT is still reporting that the killer of the Russian ambassador said something in Russian. Would the Turks hire a Chechen as a policeman?

Posted by: lysias | Dec 19 2016 19:15 utc | 5

Maximium kudos to Eva Barlett and Vanessa Beeeley for their courageous 'on the ground' journalism and their reasonableness and steadiness under fire from the MSM attacks.

Posted by: chet380 | Dec 19 2016 19:19 utc | 6

Here's what I find totally disgusting: the Russian Ambassador was just murdered and U.S. media was still harping and especially CNN on the Russian hack allegation in a punditry round table. Here's another issue that really bothers me; when they replay what happened, they play just about the whole of the gunman's speech over and over when they do address this tragic event; therefore giving him a wide-media propaganda bully pulpit.

Posted by: Circe | Dec 19 2016 19:23 utc | 7

Brilliant post b...
It would be nice to have a list of the journalists that have been abducted in Syria. One of them is now tweeting in support of the Syrian and Russian armies in Aleppo (Greek I believe) but I haven't kept the name. Just to check on what side if any some of them are tweeting.

Posted by: Mina | Dec 19 2016 19:30 utc | 8

For an 'un-embedded' reporting of the Gulf War II, see:

John Simpson The Wars Against Saddam, Taking the Hard Road to Baghdad, ISBN 0-330-41890-4

for an alternative experience of an investigative journalist's journey and the dimension it provides. Compare with contemporaneous reporting from MSM embedded hagiographic reporters of the military's progress to eliminate Saddam and the witness he was.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Dec 19 2016 19:31 utc | 9

Stand by. Nobody does payback better than the "русский" (Ruskies)

Just my opinion

Posted by: ALberto | Dec 19 2016 19:34 utc | 10

lysias @6

The killer was a Turkish policeman relieved from his post in the purge following the attempted coup against Erdogan. The individual was a Gulenist, an extreme Islamist movement. The leader, Gulen, is wanted in Turkey for his part in the coup. He has taken sanctuary in the US and was (almost certainly) the US replacement for Erdogan had the coup succeeded. The CIA hands are all over this.

Posted by: Yonatan | Dec 19 2016 19:37 utc | 11

@6 lysias.. i was wondering about all that myself.. seems to me the police id was probably stolen, but maybe it is something else.. have to wait to find out..

Posted by: james | Dec 19 2016 19:39 utc | 12

just posted that and missed yonatan's post... cia can't be ruled out here..

Posted by: james | Dec 19 2016 19:40 utc | 13

Thanks, b, this is a good reminder of the MO of the US toward journalists--which is to say they like only those that report their story. Incidents such as the deliberate bombing of Al Jazeera also come to mind (they wouldn't bomb it now as they're largely on the same side!).

@chet380/#7 - I second your kudos to those excellent women as they've been doing a great job where they get a media platform.

Posted by: WorldBLee | Dec 19 2016 19:50 utc | 14

The news about the Russian Ambassador has the potential to 'trump' the bs about the electoral college voting. Besides, I'm wondering if some other 'Clinton' Electors might feel compelled to vote for Bernie?

The CIA?

Couldn't possibly be them! They've 'never' been involved in such under-handed things ... ! Right?

Posted by: rg the lg | Dec 19 2016 19:51 utc | 15

@11, Alberto.

Stand by. Nobody does payback better than the "русский" (Ruskies)

Payback to who? First indications are that it is not Erdogan. Some rogue elements in his circle? Possible and even probable. But I think the background of anti-Russian protests in Turkey has been merely used for a more strategic purposes in re: both Syria and Russo-Turkish relations. Qui Bono? Obama Administration and media apparatus currently (if ever)are not rational players. The desperation and hatred emanating from them are palpable. Once one accepts the reality of Turkish coup as Gulen (read: CIA) inspired--pieces fall in place quite nicely.

Posted by: SmoothieX12 | Dec 19 2016 19:54 utc | 16

Repost from the E-Aleppo thread:

Harry | Dec 19, 2016 1:03:40 PM | 108
More like CIA ops, using their jihadist as useful idiot, sabotaging Turkey-Russian relationships, removing loose ends.

Yeah, well, you heard what Barry said just last week about retaliating against RuF for screwing Hilton out of her sure-thing election win: the USG will take action "at a time and place of our own choosing."

Presumably, Vlad will get the message, and the message is: You’re next.

Posted by: Denis | Dec 19, 2016 2:18:26 PM | 112

Posted by: Denis | Dec 19 2016 19:55 utc | 17

Yonatan, yes, this is what I have concluded: CIA. Here's what I just posted on another site:

RT is reporting that the shooter was fired from the Turkish police during the purge after the attempted coup in Turkey. So the assassination is unlikely to have been sponsored by the Erdogan government. The shooter was probably a Gulenist.

On the other hand, I wouldn't put it past the CIA, which has used the Gulenist movement, to have something to do with it. If they did, that's really playing with fire. Especially since Trump says he wants to improve relations with Russia and would likely be most displeased. But the CIA may feel it no longer has anything to lose, as they have already done a lot to antagonize Trump, who is said to be very thin-skinned.

Posted by: lysias | Dec 19 2016 20:03 utc | 18

The infamous Bana, occuppant of the last intact, pristine, non-dusty apartment in Aleppo, also having the last perfect internet link, is on her way to Idlib with the rest of her terrorist buddies.

Posted by: Yonatan | Dec 19 2016 20:15 utc | 19

A truck drove into a crowd in Berlin, just like in Nice. LKW fährt in Weihnachtsmarkt - Tote und viele Verletzte. Tagesspiegel says 9 dead, and, with many wounded, that number is likely to rise.

Tagesspiegel also reports the perpetrator is on the run.

Posted by: lysias | Dec 19 2016 20:19 utc | 20

Lysias @21

The killer died in a hail of bullets. That is unfortuante, but not surprising. I would not be surprised if the CIA had prepared someone to play Jack Ruby to his Lee Harvey Oswald.

Sanitised image: - at least 13 bullet holes in the wall behind him.

Posted by: Yonatan | Dec 19 2016 20:25 utc | 21

@20 denis... one would expect nothing less from such a '''christian''' country and culture..

Posted by: james | Dec 19 2016 20:28 utc | 22

No. 1 - on those last videos from Aleppo - I am sure there is perfect and fast internet connection out of Aleppo...
Should be the first clue, but no one is questioning this.
No. 2 - the Sultan has very little to gain from the assassination; my $$ would be on the Qataris and Saudis (with cia never too far behind). Really not clear why the Russians thought it'd be a good idea to send their ambassador to a cultural event. While this is done in normal circumstances, it is not done in a war zone - which Turkey is very close to.

Posted by: GoraDiva | Dec 19 2016 20:33 utc | 23

Massacre in Berlin. At the CHRISTMAS MARKET.

"We can do stuff to you." BHO to VVPutin.

Posted by: Take Me | Dec 19 2016 20:36 utc | 24

27 comments and no mention of Mossad and their inbred senior partners MI6 ( Semper Occultus )?

How telling?

Posted by: ALberto | Dec 19 2016 20:43 utc | 25

Where is Bana of Mosul? Nowhere. May be because there is no internet connection there? Or Mosul kids are being killed by good bombs, American bombs, nothing to be outraged about or even complain about.
May be thanking of American murderes is in order according to MSM propaganda operatives who wrongly called themselves journalists.

This is new age global digital propaganda, a matrix of global delusion, lying images stir cheap reason suppressing emotions stir blind rage directed by propaganda operators onto targets of political opportunity and expediency.

Posted by: Kalen | Dec 19 2016 20:52 utc | 26

Christmas holidays starts bad in Jordan, Turkey, Germany...

Posted by: Mina | Dec 19 2016 21:03 utc | 27

It is impossible that Erdogan would fire someone, during the mass firing he did, to set that person up to be a useful (deniable) tool in the future.

Remember, always read the surface of an event only, unless told to do otherwise.

Posted by: paul | Dec 19 2016 21:03 utc | 28

BBc live says driver arrested and co-driver died
Let's see how they twist it until tomorrow

Posted by: Mina | Dec 19 2016 21:04 utc | 29

Western humanitarians to weep over germany plow killings but not assassination of the ambassador in 3..2..

Posted by: Lionshare | Dec 19 2016 21:05 utc | 30

dailymail has a story about Bana the twitter prodigy

Posted by: mischi | Dec 19 2016 21:09 utc | 31

and now comes the smoke cannon

Posted by: Mina | Dec 19 2016 21:11 utc | 32

Mina @32 I am sure the perp in Berlin will be revealed to be Adolf Mohammed El Bana who comes from a long line of Bavarian beer makers but has been feeling depressed for some days now. Like they did for that kid who killed all those people outside the McDonalds in Munich earlier this year.

Posted by: mischi | Dec 19 2016 21:11 utc | 33

Writing from Chicago. Becky Carroll is an absolute zero concerned only with a paycheck and parochial city politics. Not a mastermind of anything. Does what she is told. Someone want some to use her for a conduit and she doesn't care.

Someone needs to understand where political power in Chicago resides. It ain't Emmanuels or Pritzkers or Daleys. It is the Crown family. Owns General Dynamics. Major stake in JP Morgan. Married to The Mob and effectively is currently The Mob.

Posted by: Oldhippie | Dec 19 2016 21:25 utc | 34

According to Tagesspiegel, the driver of the truck in Berlin is now in custody. The guy who was riding in the truck with him somehow died on the spot.

Posted by: lysias | Dec 19 2016 21:28 utc | 35

U.S. 'faithless' Electors update ~4 P.M. EST:

Mostly a non-event, with a few exceptions (not enough so far to make a difference):

A Maine Democratic elector voted for Bernie Sanders out of protest, but his vote was ruled out of order and he changed it to Clinton. Yes, some Clinton electors went rouge as well, not just Trump ones.

Another Democratic elector from Minnesota refused to cast their vote for Clinton and was replaced with an alternate who cast the Clinton vote.

A Colorado Democraticelector likewise refused to vote for her and was replaced with an alternate who cast the Clinton vote.

[See anything strange so far in the faithless electors saga?]

In Washington State, four more Democratic electors (of 12 total) cast protest votes for someone else besides their party's nominee: Clinton - three for ex-General and Secretary of State Colin Powell, purveyor of fake Iraqi WMDs.

So it looks like more Clinton-hating then Trump-hating early on. No idea what portion of all electors have voted so far, but nothing on faithless Trump electors yet. That doesn't mean there won't be any, but I just think it's hilarious that only the Democratic electoral rats are fleeing the sinking ship so far.

MarketWatch Dec 19, 2016 3:37 p.m. ET
Faithless electors so far are Democrats, not Republicans
Electors in Minnesota, Maine and Washington refused to back Clinton

Posted by: PavewayIV | Dec 19 2016 21:32 utc | 36

@ 39 PavewayIV

A bit earlier RT reported several 'faithless' Texas electors (IIRC one Trump renegade and three others) were replaced with alternative electors. Only Strom Thurmond's 'Dixiecrats' pulled off an organised electoral college revolt against H. Truman.

Posted by: Formerly T-Bear | Dec 19 2016 21:41 utc | 37

NYTimes just reported:

"RIGHT NOW As of 4:20 p.m. Eastern time, voting had ended in at least 43 states, with 259 votes for Donald J. Trump and 156 for Hillary Clinton. Mr. Trump needs 270 votes for his Election Day victory to become official."

And now 265 (of 270 needed) for Trump on a newer NYT vote tracker. So the electoral college coup has sort of fizzled out and left Democrats a bit embarrassed for their trouble.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Dec 19 2016 21:42 utc | 38


"RT is reporting that the shooter was fired from the Turkish police during the purge after the attempted coup in Turkey. So the assassination is unlikely to have been sponsored by the Erdogan government. The shooter was probably a Gulenist."

Erdogan has always avoided pointing the finger at his grass root Islamists who are sympathizers to the Al Nusra movement in Syria for fear of loosing their votes necessary to fulfill his personal ambitions.

He prefers either to accuse the PKK, extreme rights or more conviently the Gulenists. The story that the young killer was a "gulenist" seems totally fabricated and ridiculous.
This time Russia will make the necessary investigations public and will not shy off of accusing the Islamist Turks of the crime.
Erdogan will find himself cornered as he will have to officially condemn his supporters and bear violent blowbacks. Dark time ahead for Turkey.

Posted by: virgile | Dec 19 2016 21:48 utc | 39

@ virgile | 42

This time Russia will make the necessary investigations public and will not shy off of accusing the Islamist Turks of the crime.

Regardless who is responsible, assassination was done under his watch, therefore Erdogan will have to offer serious concessions to Russia, which in turn will go along with Turkey's official position IMHO.

Posted by: Harry | Dec 19 2016 22:03 utc | 40

Adding to #43

Thats officially, unofficially Russia will figure out who ordered the hit and will hunt them down with extreme prejudice.

Posted by: Harry | Dec 19 2016 22:10 utc | 41

@paveway 39,41, 'the electoral college coup has sort of fizzled out and left Democrats a bit embarrassed for their trouble.'

thanks for the link to the nyt. it leaves the Demoblicans more than a little embarrassed it leaves them a steaming heap on the floor. i'm happy to see that Faith Spotted Eagle got clinton's delegate in WA along with the other 3 for Colin Powell.

the biggest loser - clinton already having lost before it all started - seems to me to be the transnational corporate mainstream media, not only in the usa but in the occupied eu/nato countries as well. they've been shown to have been talking to themselves during this whole 'campaign' of their own ... and for just how long before? and certainly forevermore after. they've literally knocked themselves out.

they are the other side of b's story about journalists in the warzone ... the warzone is all over the planet as far as the transnational corporate media are concerned. and they are blowing themselves up worldwide.

on the russian ambassador in ankara and the people mowed down in berlin ... may they rest in peace. i think obama/the cia are behind both. obama's acting completely in character, as he has for the past eight years. the cia's real 'siberian/manchurian' candidate. perhaps the murders in ankara and berlin came when the collapse of the cia's coup in the us became apparent.

if tee-rump doesn't kill the cia they will certainly kill him.

Posted by: jfl | Dec 19 2016 22:12 utc | 42

The multiple terror attacks today will bolster Trump's assertion that the US and Russia should work together against radical Islam. Of course, even that message will be manipulated to include Iranians and Hezbollah even though they aren't committing terrorism. But that won't stop the false narratives attributed to the Russians in Aleppo. The propaganda will gradually shift away from Russia as war criminals to Iran and Hezbollah once the administration changes.

Posted by: Musburger | Dec 19 2016 22:14 utc | 43

This is a "real" question - not sarcasm or a "gotcha" question:

If Western journalists cannot be reporting from Syria then how to explain Eva Bartlett and Vanessa Beeley?

Posted by: Gwen | Dec 19 2016 22:21 utc | 44

Al qaeda journalist meeting bana and her mom
Lots of pics to keep beford they vanish from the web

Posted by: Mina | Dec 19 2016 22:24 utc | 45

Pro rebel journos were in West aleppo last week so if they want to go they can but they ll certainly be kept embeded like in other places
They cant report from diyar bakr Libya or iraq btw

Posted by: Mina | Dec 19 2016 22:27 utc | 46

Pro rebel journos were in West aleppo last week so if they want to go they can but they ll certainly be kept embeded like in other places
They cant report from diyar bakr Libya or iraq btw

Posted by: Mina | Dec 19 2016 22:33 utc | 47

From paveway's nyt link ...

Of 306 electors pledged to vote for Donald J. Trump
304 voted for him
2 voted for someone else
Of 232 electors pledged to vote for Hillary Clinton
221 have voted for her so far
4 voted for someone else

looks like there is still the opportunity for 7 clinton 'electors' to vote Faith Spotted Eagle, Colin Powell, or someone else.

Posted by: jfl | Dec 19 2016 22:54 utc | 50

46;Yes,my take also;Nuts yelling Allulu Akbar seem to be the Wests common enemy today,and yes it does show the Russians in a good light.
When the ZNN tells US its all self created,this entire idiotic war of error,it will end.The fifth of never though,as their house of cards collapses.
I wonder what the next Trump coup attempt will be after this latest EC debacle?Go Donald.

Posted by: dahoit | Dec 19 2016 23:20 utc | 51

Good call, b.
The human rights organizations sold out on Libya but it was recently I learned of the cozy relationship to the State Department. In some cases, it's a revolving door of people going from State to an NGO and vice-versa.

Posted by: Curtis | Dec 19 2016 23:25 utc | 52

According to Tagesspiegel, the driver of the truck now under arrest is an Afghan or Pakistani.

Posted by: lysias | Dec 19 2016 23:34 utc | 53

@ 42 and 43

I doubt Russia will risk Erdogan losing whatever control he has over his jihadist/islamist support base. Russia is playing the long game.

Posted by: Peter AU | Dec 19 2016 23:46 utc | 54

Posted by: lysias | Dec 19, 2016 6:34:42 PM | 56

Could be personal. Germany has started to send Afghans back to their country claiming it was safe.

Posted by: somebody | Dec 20 2016 0:09 utc | 55

So Trump has done it, how could he after this was discovered on the spying allegations..
"The high level, anonymous and completely trustworthy sources also told a major US news agency that Putin himself had piloted a specially-designed Russian spy plane across the Atlantic to personally direct the still-ongoing hacking operations from the air.Satellite images seen by a separate anonymous NASA whistleblower are believed to show Putin in the cockpit of the spy plane alongside his co-pilot Boris, a lifelike robotic bear which has been under secret development in the depths of Siberia and has been programmed to attack Putin’s enemies on command using a variety of lethal methods.

Posted by: harrylaw | Dec 20 2016 0:22 utc | 56

Ahhh... fake news, eh? As Moonbat, Monolycus use to say,"American Enantiodromia"...

Posted by: Uncle $cam | Dec 20 2016 0:27 utc | 57

Syrian Ambassador to U.N. in statement claims "many foreign intelligence and military officers" trapped inside Aleppo pocket, gives names including an American

Posted by: cantmossadtheassad | Dec 20 2016 0:42 utc | 58

Is this completely out of order or what..?

Posted by: pubumwei | Dec 20 2016 1:03 utc | 59

Surely someone should be screaming to the high heavens that the Wahhabi Kuwaitis are trying to gain access to our Donald.!

Raise the alarm.!


Posted by: pubumwei | Dec 20 2016 1:07 utc | 60

As paveway noted above...

A Maine Clinton elector voted for Bernie Sanders out of protest, but the vote was ruled out of order and changed to Clinton.

A Clinton elector from Minnesota refused to cast their vote for Clinton and was replaced with an alternate who cast the Clinton vote.

A Colorado Clinton elector likewise refused to vote for Clinton and was replaced with an alternate who cast the Clinton vote.

In Washington three Clinton electors crossed party lines and voted for ... Colin Powell. And another Clinton elector voted for Faith Spotted Eagle, the chairwoman of the Yankton Sioux Tribe’s treaty council, and a leader of the resistance to the gas pipeline in South Dakota.

Two Trump electors in Texas failed to vote for Trump, instead casting one ballot for Ron Paul and one for John Kasich.

With the votes of four electors still unreported, three times the number of Clinton electors bolted as Trump electors, four times if another of the unreported 4 electors has 'come through'.

Yet another 'surprise' for the alien 'elite' in the US of A. Let's hope this is the collapse of the "'media activist' domination" not only in the USA but throughout the West. Let's hope these were last ditch suicide attacks on the part of the TNC media and that they have finally rendered themselves impotent through their repeated, ever wilder lies.

With their electoral coup having failed so completely, the CIA will undoubtedly arrange for a 'lone shooter' to assassinate the POTUS, just as they did in Dallas Texas, on 22 November 1963. Back to their tried and true.

The CIA will thereby "Make America Great Again" themselves. Just like in their good ole days.

Posted by: jfl | Dec 20 2016 1:08 utc | 61

I don't think the CIA was involved in the killing of the Russian ambassador, as it was successful.

Posted by: DemiJohn | Dec 20 2016 1:09 utc | 62

b, you missed the main point. The Western mainstream media was part of the conspiracy to subvert truth by killing journalists. This would not have worked, if the MSM had not been part of the conspiracy.

Real information has always been available, either from the government side or from independent investigators like ACLOS, and lately independent journalist like Vanessa Beeley and Eva Bartlett. The MSM made a willful decision to rely solely on "Activists say" and reject all other sources and points of view. This is only possible if the media had lost interest in reporting facts and has instead become a channel for propaganda.

My friend Jon Hellevig has just published his report on the totalitarian media regime and speech control in the West.

EU's Infowar On Russia - Putting In Place A Totalitarian Media Regime And Speech Control (summary)
What is happening is the militarization of media. All Western journalist are becoming infowar assets.

Posted by: Petri Krohn | Dec 20 2016 1:16 utc | 64

Four times as many Clinton electors as Trump electors did bolt ... five on the record and three replaced when they voted 'incorrectly'. Bernie Sanders got one elector's vote in Hawaii.

@66 Petri

We cannot stop the US/NATO/Israel from killing journalists, but certainly they have told too many lies, and in doing so have destroyed their stenographer-journalists' credibility.

and with that they have destroyed the mass audience, fragmented it into separate enclaves of 'truth', like moa and the rest of those 'reliably echoing Russian propaganda' and those on the right who have enclaves of their own. Chris Hedges mentions this at the end of his ‘Fake News’ in America: Homegrown, and Far From New. He seems to see it as a problem, with each enclave circling its wagons and resisting alternative points of view, but i see the fracturing of the narrative as a good thing, now if we could just fracture the power behind that 'common' narrative: the EU and the presidency of the USA.

Posted by: jfl | Dec 20 2016 1:41 utc | 65

@ Petri Krohn -- Why would I spend the time to read that very long text by Hellevig when he relies on 70-year old propaganda.
Hitler is dead.
The Nazis were defeated.
The Germans were not only de-Nazified, they were brainwashed out of their minds.


Argumentum ad Nazium is pusillanimous; it's a way to avoid confronting our own very real failings.

(Besides: Hitler and the Nazis were great at spectacle and Goebbels insisted on high aesthetic values in propaganda -- propaganda as art. The British were the masters of propaganda as provocation to hate, and US and Israelis were their willing students. British-Jewish-USA propaganda is far more hateful, and less artful, than Nazi propaganda. Capra vs Riefenstahl? No contest.

Posted by: Croesus | Dec 20 2016 2:37 utc | 66

Preibus sets up Trump for ascendancy block by planting the bad seed.

Posted by: pubumwei | Dec 20 2016 2:39 utc | 67

Why would it stop.?

Posted by: pubumwei | Dec 20 2016 3:14 utc | 69

@Gwen 47
Didn't Bartlett stay out of the terrorist controlled parts of Aleppo until they were liberated? Even then, she mentions nearly being killed by an explosive round, that struck 15 meters from her.

Posted by: Johan Meyer | Dec 20 2016 3:35 utc | 70

But the timing of Ambassador Karlov being shot on the day the US electors gave Trump the vote is interesting, given the Russophobe climate in Borgistan; not drawing any conclusions, obviously -- but looking at who benefits, mostly the warmongers who might seek to throw a bloody spanner into the Russo-Turk dialogue. Putin vows revenge. How did security let this guy get so close? That's my question.

Oh, here is some chatter from a few years back...

Posted by: stumpy | Dec 20 2016 5:37 utc | 71

Preibus agreed on Trumps behalf to OK this.? See earlier posts...

Posted by: pubumwei | Dec 20 2016 5:59 utc | 72

These are direct links from the UN Security Council Media Stakeout, December 19th, 2016.

Bashar Ja'afari, Permanent Representative of the Syrian Arab Republic to the United Nations, on the situation in the Syrian Arab Republic.

If anybody's ready to stomach 20+ minutes of lies,
Ms. Samantha Power, Permanent Representative of the United States to the United Nations, on the situation in the Syrian Arab Republic.

Posted by: iegee | Dec 20 2016 8:00 utc | 73


Your buddy Chuck has trotted out a video of "Bana" interviewed by a Syrian "journalist".

What say you now you cruel Assad apologist-propagandist fake newsy, huh? The lil precious thing saw planes in the sky, bombs, dead people; lost of suffering everywhere. And you called her fake.


Posted by: Dragon | Dec 20 2016 10:25 utc | 74

xyz #78

I would call that unfounded conspiracy theory but this guy has been interviewed all over German media on the Berlin bombing as he accidentally was at the Christmas market and just left in time.

As if some people want to put up a poster about what is going on. (Or still aren't used to the internet where people look stuff up)

Posted by: somebody | Dec 20 2016 11:28 utc | 75

add to 79

The Israeli expert mentioned that Breitscheidplatz might have been chosen for its symbolic and historic value.

Now, what is that symbolic value?

The ruins of the church standing there are a monument for peace and a memorial of the second world war. The square is named after a socialist persecuted by the Nazis.

Posted by: somebody | Dec 20 2016 11:40 utc | 76

Someone said the father of Bana is Turkmen (Maytham I believe) it would fit with the fact the family headed towards the Turkish border and also with the accent of the mother; she looks Turkish more than Arabic, which explains she could not answer Maytham in Arabic when he tried to arrange her evacuation last week

poor kid manipulated by adults

Posted by: Mina | Dec 20 2016 11:44 utc | 77

xyz 80

Yep, that tourist story is strange.

Posted by: somebody | Dec 20 2016 12:00 utc | 78

add xyz #78

The cui bono actually points to the other side

A few days ago FAZ published an article about the German government refusing to work with Assad.

So what about this European/Russian/Syrian/Turkish security cooperation?

Posted by: somebody | Dec 20 2016 12:19 utc | 79

You can read events as a sequence but also as a tit for tat.

Posted by: somebody | Dec 20 2016 12:23 utc | 80

Think you've hit the nail on the head as usual b. About Bana, somebody correct me if I'm wrong, but haven't seen any firm evidence she ever was in Aleppo? No footage of bus trip, both Bana and "mom" well groomed unlike fellow travelers. If I had to guess I'd say they traveled from Gaziantep to meet the bus.

Posted by: D. Barnes | Dec 20 2016 12:39 utc | 81

Gruesome story was buried in a paper published end of August

Posted by: Mina | Dec 20 2016 12:48 utc | 82

the 12 year old who wanted to bomb a christmas market in a much smaller town in germany recently was also Afghan
might be that IS is targetting afghans online because they are less under surveillance? pakistanis often communicate using a transliterated latin version of urdu that seems imo impossible to spy on because made of complete vernacular, abbreviations, all this in a transliteration that does not respect any standard... same must go for pashtun..?

Posted by: Mina | Dec 20 2016 13:04 utc | 83

Posted by: Mina | Dec 20, 2016 8:04:09 AM | 88

They think they might have the wrong guy. If it is state sponsored as it vey likely is, you won't find a trace connecting the perpetrator to backers.

Gedächtniskirche also used to be the symbol of West Berlin ie the French, British and US parts of Berlin.

That Faz article I quoted reported Germany's governement assuredness of not recognizing the legitimacy of Assad and the worry that Turkey might have an agreement with Russia without participation of the US. That was before the death of the Russian ambassador.

Posted by: somebody | Dec 20 2016 13:32 utc | 84

Replying to "Yonatan", comment 22.

"The infamous Bana, occuppant of the last intact, pristine, non-dusty apartment in Aleppo, also having the last perfect internet link, is on her way to Idlib with the rest of her terrorist buddies."

I no longer have the link but I remember reading that many "moderate rebels" were provided with satellite phones when they were sent back to Syria after being trained in Turkey. It therefore wouldn't matter that the local internet was down.

Also remember reading some time ago that Bana's father was a "local government official". It would have been difficult to be working for "local government" when East Aleppo was controlled by the Jihadis' without either being a Jihadi or sympathetic to them.

The fact that Bana and her family are reported to have been evacuated to Idlib also indicates that.

Maybe someone here has more precise information and the links.

Posted by: EnglishOutsider | Dec 20 2016 13:57 utc | 85

bana is close to SAMS-usa
she was interviewed yesterday near the Turkish border
very probably they had satellite connection since they belonged to the core people, close to the white helmets and alhamdo
they are turkmens, not syrians in my opinion

Posted by: Mina | Dec 20 2016 14:10 utc | 86

Well, it looks like the Turkish government also thinks the killing of the Russian ambassador is CIA. Turkish Pro-Government Media Blames US, CIA For Assassination Of Russian Ambassador. It is very unlikely that so many pro-AKP media outlets in Turkey would be taking this line if it were not inspired by the Turkish government.

And guess what? I suspect all these Turkish journalists know what they're talking about.

Posted by: lysias | Dec 20 2016 15:08 utc | 87

@ Yonatan 22
A friend commented to me about Bana when I sent him the good news about liberated Aleppo and success in Mosul. I had to point out that not all social media can be trusted.

"Critics questioned the veracity of Bana's Twitter account, claiming the sophistication of the writing was beyond the girl's years and command of English.
However, the account profile bio states "account managed by mom" — an English teacher who has also studied journalism — and most of the Tweets are signed either 'Bana' or 'Fatemah.'"
"Within two days of setting up the account, she had used #HolocaustAleppo, #MassacreInAleppo, #StopAleppoMassacre and tweeted at Russian President Vladimir Putin, US President Barack Obama and Syrian President Bashar Assad."

It sounds like Mom is a useful tool of the overall agenda. Maybe she received some of those communications materials distributed by the US for its activist reporters.

Posted by: Curtis | Dec 20 2016 15:09 utc | 88

Oops. The first quote was from RT:
The second was from CBC.

Posted by: Curtis | Dec 20 2016 15:13 utc | 89

oops again. vice versa

Posted by: Curtis | Dec 20 2016 15:13 utc | 90

@74 stumpy, 'How did security let this guy get so close?'

yeah. Putin's made a point of noting that protecting ambassadors is the responsibility of the host country.

@93 lysias, 'I suspect all these Turkish journalists know what they're talking about.'

sounds like zero hedge isn't buying it ...

The gunman, Mevlut Mert Altintas, chanted Islamist slogans also used by radical terrorist organization the Al Nusra Front after he shot Karlov to death at an art gallery in Ankara. Yet, many pro-government newspapers and columnists did not hesitate to label the gunman a member of “FETÖ,” a term the government coined to call the Gulen movement a terrorist organization, and also talked about the US role in the murder from their front pages on Tuesday.

... and i'm having trouble along the lines of stumpy's observations as well.

rather than a Gulenist it may well have been one of Erdogan's Turkmen who whacked the ambassador ... It was the equivalent of a suicide bombing, perhaps the killer is enjoying himself with one of the myriad virgins due to 'martyrs' for the cause as we write.

It's still the CIA's fault according to me ... "aggression ... is the supreme international crime ... contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole."

Posted by: jfl | Dec 20 2016 15:44 utc | 91

I am currently staying in Turkey and learnt that the Russian ambassodor explicitely denied personal security guards. Never ever has there been an attack on a diplomat in Turkey before. The killer was a trained policeman who must have been backed by a network as a normal policeman of his young age would not wear such a suit an get that close to the ambassador.

Posted by: Marion | Dec 20 2016 16:44 utc | 92

and here in Turkey people think that the killer belonged to the Gulen network wanting to harm the meeting of Turkey, , Iran and Russia of today.

Posted by: Marion | Dec 20 2016 16:47 utc | 93

Meanwhile back in USSA the players put their cards on the table

“It’s almost as if people in the intelligence community are carrying out a disinformation campaign against the President-elect of the United States,” King said. “It’s absolutely disgraceful.” “Somebody had the time to leak it to the Washington Post, but they don’t have the time to come to Congress. It is the House Committee on Intelligence that absolutely has the jurisdiction over the CIA and the intelligence community,” he said. “It is their job to come. They don’t have any choice.”

Posted by: ALberto | Dec 20 2016 16:47 utc | 94

@94 curtis.. it's rather disappointing how the cbc operates as a regular information dispenser for that bullshit..

Posted by: james | Dec 20 2016 16:49 utc | 95

What happened to Altintas?

Some versions say he was shot, others say he committed suicide. The distinction is, politically speaking, not insignificant. Turkey now has a media blackout on the incident.

Given how sterile the floor of the gallery is a lot of evidence is visible. I count 6 casings in the pic of Altintas ranting. You can see Karlov's glasses against one wall about 10 feet away, indicating how hard he hit the floor. He was shot in the back but fell on his back and his glasses slid 10 feet or so across the tile.

The only view of Altintas' body I've seen is pixilated, but it looks like a bloody wound in the R side of the abdomen. There is what looks like a clip near the body with the spring busted loose. I haven't seen any views of his final moments.

Karlov's wife was at the event, almost right next to him. She'll become Russia's Jackie O., at least until they take out Putin. That she may have strength. Russian women are tough, given all the world has put them through over the last 100 years.

Posted by: Denis | Dec 20 2016 16:53 utc | 96

Spent a few hours checking on Bana's ex-whereabouts, still not convinced she was ever in Aleppo. Almost every video is indoors, the exceptions are all dodgy in various ways. For instance in this one Bana appears at 3:06 after a suspicious transition, two different locations?

I even consulted bellingcat in case they had some real evidence for a change and was sadly disappointed. The only image they "geolocate" containing Bana is taken from the following video:
To my eyes that screams "studio production", the quality is much higher than the usual periscope vids. Sure it's probably Aleppo, but was Bana really there? I remain unconvinced. Same story for her ineffectual English teacher Mr.Alhamdo.

Not saying she definitely wasn't in East Aleppo, just saying I'm having trouble finding convincing proof that she was.

Posted by: D. Barnes | Dec 20 2016 17:10 utc | 97

F. William Engdahl gave a lot of the evidence for a connection between Gulen and the CIA in this 2013 piece: Boston and the CIA ‘Snafu’: The grey eminence behind Turkey’s Erdogan and the AKP (written before the split between Gulen and the AKP).

Posted by: lysias | Dec 20 2016 17:26 utc | 98

#102 @Denis

No security at all??

"He was five minutes into it when a smartly dressed Mevlut Mert Altintas, a 22-year-old riot squad police officer, took up position behind him and opened fire,"

Posted by: From The Hague | Dec 20 2016 17:43 utc | 99

The idiotic MSMs displaying the guy issuing rhetoric photo will definitely backfire,as all it does is tell the American people the Russians are the good guys.Knuckleheads.
Would Mossad do this?I don't believe they would leave themselves out to dry by exposure,as Russia already knows zion is antagonistic towards Russia,by the behavior of the western arms ZNNs total hate campaign.
Same with the CIA;It would mean war.
Either gulen or wahabi GS scum,or just a lone wolf propaganda filled purveyor of the absolute hysterical nonsense of the Wests media.
No mea culpas to be issued of course.

Posted by: dahoit | Dec 20 2016 18:06 utc | 100

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