Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
September 14, 2018

Syria - Al-Qaeda And Turkey Stage "Peaceful Civilians" Events

Turkey and other supporters of the terrorists in Syria arranged for fresh Friday demonstrations by "civilians" in Idleb governorate. These are supposed to show the 'western' public that the population of the al-Qaeda controlled province is still in favor of the anti-Assad "revolution".

Source video - bigger

Some tweets from yesterday make clear that these demonstrations are a highly choreographed propaganda exercise:

TØM CΛT @TomtheBasedCat - 17:34 utc- 13 Sep 2018

Supposedly, an array of European press agencies with security will enter Idlib city tomorrow to cover some demonstrations there.

Idelb is controlled by Hayat Tahrir al Sham (HTS), an internationally banned al-Qaeda organization. Turkey, which has friendly relations with al-Qaeda in Syria, will have arranged for the security of the foreign media.

Some prominent people also spoke about the event:

Harald Doornbos @HaraldDoornbos - 19:08 utc - 13 Sep 2018

Interesting. Son of Al-Qaeda co-founder Abdullah Azzam, Huthaifa Azzam, calls on opposition in Idlib not to raise black/jihadi flags during tomorrow's protest but only revolution flags because there are international journalists on the ground reporting on the protests.

original tweet - bigger

For once al-Qaeda does not want its flag to be seen. The demonstrations must only show "peaceful civilians".

Sam Heller, now with Crisis Group, caught two voice recordings that were distributed via Telegram. It is not completely clear that these are legit, but they make sense:

Below are translations of two voice recordings purported to be of Tahrir al-Sham emir “Abu Akramah al-Urduni,” via anti-Jabhat al-Nusrah/Hayat Tahrir al-Sham group “JAN Violations.” The voice messages are notable for their apparently acute sensitivity to the optics of Idlib’s protests and those protests’ portrayal in foreign media ..

The first message is an advise similar to the one given by the son of al-Qaeda co-founder Abdullah Azzam: Do not let any HTS/al-Qaeda flags appear in the choreographed demonstrations. It seems that HTS fears that these could be used against it:

“Brothers, a very important issue: We don’t want it to be come out in the Western media that the people opposes us, and that the people brought down our banner and stomped on it. Pay attention: If the banner is raised, there will be people placed just to pull away the banner and stomp on it. And it will appear in the Western media that they stomped on the Hayah’s banner. This is a big issue, brothers. It means that the battle will be against us, in the future. They’ll say that the people is ready now to announce the battle in these protests. Because these protests are what, the people, the public. If the people and the public pull away our banner in front of the media and stomp on it, that means the battle is ready against us now.”

The second message is an order to accompany the demonstrations and to take care that everyone behaves:

“Peace and God’s blessings be upon you, something very important to say: Coordinate with those responsible for these protests and say to them, ‘We’re with you, your brothers, and whatever you need, we’ll walk with you. And for your protection.’ Talking is free, brothers. Why not speak to them kindly. They’ll say, ‘God reward you, we don’t need anything.’ Tell them, ‘Okay, we’ll walk with you. We’re Muslims, too, and we demand the toppling of the regime.’”

The demonstrations, arranged for the media, took place as ordered.

Now the regime change propagandists are out to promoted the first videos from these staged events:

Thomas van Linge @ThomasVLinge - 12:41 utc - 14 Sep 2018

Once again protests against the #Assad regime have erupted all over rebel-held #Idlib and northern #Aleppo.
Syrians in the town of #Kafranbel sing "we want freedom!"

The demonstrations are similar to those staged in 2011-2013. Green-white-black French-colonial Syria flags and a few Turkish ones get waved -all new it seems- and a few dozens men and young boys, no women or girl in sight, chant some sectarian slogans:

"Let the Nusayriah [Alawites] hear, we are people who drink blood." Protesters: "Allah Akbar"

No black and white HTS/al-Qaeda flags is visible and no weapons are in sight. The video shots are tightly controlled and concentrate on the civilian clothed men and children. Where a wider frame is shown fighters in camouflage can be seen at the edge of the crowds.

Source video - bigger

The intended message of these stunts:

"Do you see us? There are only peaceful civilians in Idelb. No fighters are here. We are not terrorist. We only want freedom!"

The message is false.

Idleb governorate is completely controlled by Hayat Tahrir al Sham (vid). HTS, foreign Jihadis, as well as 'moderate' Islamists affiliated with Turkey. These are terrorist who prevent civilians from leaving and oppress the population:

In the northern Syrian town of Harem, militants last week erected a gallows in a public square, saying it was for “frogs,” or traitors.
[O]pposition fighters linked to al-Qaeda are seeking to head off the kind of negotiated surrender that has sealed the fate of other opposition areas.

The gallows, which the militants publicized on their official news website, was “set up to intimidate the traitors that worked on reconciliation agreements to the regime, so that they know that in the end their fate is death,” said an activist in the town, speaking on the condition of anonymity to avoid retaliation. “The purpose of its construction is to strike fear.”

Al-Qaeda has not vanished from Idleb. It still terrorizes the population. What would have been the punishment for not following the orders for these demonstrations. The gallows? A customary beheading? Or just some whipping of the soles of ones feet?

These videos of demonstrations are propaganda clips directed by the Turkish president Erdogan, in co-production with al-Qaeda, to delay the liberation of Idleb.

No one should fall for them.

Posted by b on September 14, 2018 at 15:52 UTC | Permalink

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@97 donkeytale... the parallels with syria and libya are too strong to ignore.. if you think the usa and russia are the same on this front - there is no talking with you!!

see @96 antispin post for more insight, although it sounds as though you are not interested.. nice talking with you - have the last word, as i am not continuing..

Posted by: james | Sep 15 2018 20:59 utc | 101

In agreement with your succinct post, Glenn Brown, I will simply say that the position Putin has consistently taken has been not to support Assad, but to support the Syrian people's right to determine their own leader. There is no 'side' to that position. It comes down to the right of self-determination for a country and the protection of its borders.

I don't know if that can be called moral. It seems to me that all the discussions about who gets what leave out the people themselves, those that have a little shack or a farm they were given by their parents and grandparents, the places of worship that have been there for centuries, their schools and hospitals, streets and neighborhoods. The destruction of those things, and the wanton destruction of lives - that is immoral.

You cannot be serious, donkeytale. You cannot be serious.

Posted by: juliania | Sep 15 2018 21:01 utc | 102

Are you people kidding me? No one remembers that Donkeytale is a troll? He's one of the longest operating trolls going back to ye olde days of Dailykos(guess which side he's always been on).

Posted by: sejomoje | Sep 15 2018 21:04 utc | 103

@31cs Consortium is full of zioshephard's full spectrumdominance immediately after son's takeover.

Posted by: Tannenhouser | Sep 15 2018 21:10 utc | 104

I support the arguments of Glenn Brown @ 100 and Juliania @ 102, that the wishes of the Syrian people themselves in how to govern themselves, how to organise their society and resources, and who they choose as their leaders, are paramount.

National sovereignty (the right of self-determination and the right of a nation to have its territory and borders respected by others) is important and so is the right of a nation to determine how its natural wealth is to be used and distributed among its people. Outsiders have no right to try to steal this wealth by compelling nations to yield to them via compliant governments.

I would add that Donkeytale's deliberate confusion of Bashar al Assad with his father is intended to discredit the son and by inference his government. That Bashar al Assad succeeded his father as President (and the Syrian Parliament itself bent the rules governing minimum age requirements to allow the succession in 2000) has no bearing on his current performance as leader - that is past history, and it is Assad le fils' choice as to whether he continues his father's legacy (of maintaining a stable Syria against forces seeking to destroy the country) or not. In some ways he has, in other ways he has not. But it is for Syrian people to decide whether Bashar al Assad remains their leader.

Posted by: Jen | Sep 15 2018 21:26 utc | 105

@103 sejomoje... wasn't around for that, but i see it now!

i too agree with g brown, juliania and jen here..

Posted by: james | Sep 15 2018 21:42 utc | 106

Too bad people like Jen haven't been in charge of any "Western" government since WW2's end as we wouldn't be writing about Syria or its presidential transition.

Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 15 2018 23:03 utc | 107

Karlof1 @ 107: Thanks for the praise! But I fear I wouldn't have been much of a politician.😁

Posted by: Jen | Sep 15 2018 23:56 utc | 108

Jen @108--

That's just it: The problem with most politicians is they're politicians--somewhere they lose their humanity and honesty and become sociopaths. The exceptions, like Tulsi Gabbard, prove the rule.

Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 16 2018 0:18 utc | 109

The Israel Project's secret Facebook Campaign is a film censored within the Outlaw US Empire, watch part of it here.

Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 16 2018 1:33 utc | 110

@110 karlof1

Excellent. Thank you for that 2-minute clip. Now I shall have to search out the whole documentary. Surely it will break through the Qatari censorship somehow?

In just 2 minutes we see that the Cup of Jane heartwarming Facebook page with half a million followers (and created by the Israel Project) slips in a meme that the Israeli air force has painted its fighter jets pink, in aid of Breast Cancer Awareness week. "How cool is that?" gushes Jane.

We on this side of the curtain wonder how cool it was for the Palestinians when those pink planes came and blew their existence into atoms.

That is going to be one hell of a powerful documentary when it finally gets out here, into the wild.

Posted by: Grieved | Sep 16 2018 3:54 utc | 111

@jrkrideau 51

I have never been to Syria but have worked with Syrians; in Damascus or Aleppo I would have expected women.

Although you have worked with Syrians and I have not, I don't think you quite understand how secular Syria really is. It's not about "expecting women" — they are present in the same amounts as in European countries, heads uncovered. Here's a video filmed a few days ago by Eva Bartlett in Maaloula (a tiny provincial town of about 3,000 people):

The first 15 seconds deceivingly show only men, but keep watching.

Posted by: S | Sep 16 2018 4:17 utc | 112

The dingbats and derps can play with semantics to slice the rightness of this argument any way they like, but in the end the concentration of arseholes in Idlib cannot be ignored by the rest of Syria. If the fighters were only Syrians who wanted what they believed was a better society, then yes, some sort of accommodation would eventually be reached, but they are not, a big chunk, probably the majority at this stage in the conflict have been brought into Syria from outside and there is simply no way that those dingbats are going to just let things slide. Why would they? They are there because they have been promised support for some other cause or because they have lapped up some nonsense fed to them by powerful people who are far away from Idlib.
If they don't keep stirring up trouble they won't get paid, the 'sponsors' will say "ok no help for you with your problems" or if believers, they will be told that god doesn't like losers so they better get off their butts & blow some stuff up lest they end up in hell.

Putting a cordon around the entire area wouldn't just be incredibly resource intensive at a time when Syria needs to devote everything to cleaning up the mess that has been made, it would be unlikely to be fully effective meaning amerika and its bum boys will send in a big pile of nastiness.
Remember Gouta where the arseholes bombed the rest of Damascus every day with mortars killing thousands? Well this would be like that only it wouldn't be mortars, amerika, the euro slugs plus the zionist arselicker would find a way to get missiles into Idlib so that ordinary Syrians could never get back to the way they want their nation.
There will be a battle over Idlib and while the slimies argue for more time to give everyone a chance, even while the types they are apologists for are tightening the noose to ensure none of the ordinary sh1tkickers & families can get near the 'protected routes' out, the fighting season is drawing closer to ending. Once winter hits everything gets harder to do, yet if the Syrian government waits until next spring the arseholes will be better dug in with more better weaponry supplies by the forces of darkness.
I just cannot see how holding off too much longer can possibly work for Syria and it's army. Agent Orange will be cajoled into all sorts of 'promises' during the november mid-terms and the nato puppets will be emboldened by the fake belief they held the attack off for 6 months so by then it won't just be the frogs with amerika in Syria, there will be foul little englander morons and creepy belgique racists, possibly even nasty german fascists all itching to kill Syrians of whatever stripe.
Yeah they probably all could get blown over by a decent clip around their batwing ears, but of course the creeps who sent them in would regard that as a good excuse to shovel in a big heap more units of cannon-fodder equipped with even more evil shit to kill Syrians.

We shouldn't worry too much about that though since most of us should remember that every time the Syrians ahve moved towards taking back their country the same chinless jaws from far away have wagged making the same worthless threats. Nothing happened then and not much more will happen this time. If the arseholes do try a false flag what is the worst that will happen? Twice as many cruise missiles get fired at Syria meaning twice as many, more than 80% last time, will miss, fail, get shot down.
amerikan dingbats wave their ugly symbol of oppression trying to convince themselves they have won something while a couple of paras down the bottom of page 26 of their fishwrap declares Idlib has 'fallen'.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Sep 16 2018 4:19 utc | 113

@Debs 113
Not one of you best Debs, but ok, I prefer when you intertwine humor and sarcasm.
As for what happens, we should watch what V. Putin does and not what he says. He has often enough made a point of pointing something particular out (very sincere and meaning every word) and else casually commenting on something.
Russia has interests in the ME. It is the "soft underbelly" of Russia (W.S.Churchill rewrite) and V. Putin is acutely aware that the control or peace in the ME is a key to success of OBOR. Unfortunately the fascist orcs knows this as well, and the orcs knows that if OBOR succeeds, their time has come to an end, they will be reverted to irrelevance (they are going there , but slowly).

Meanwhile us plebs can contemplate the cost of 10 years supply of food, fuel and especially iodine pills....

Posted by: Den Lille Abe | Sep 16 2018 5:07 utc | 114

A consequence from the staged Idleb demonstrations - Erdogan will be miffed by this:

Sam Heller @AbuJamajem

Fatwa from Tahrir al-Sham’s Abu al-Fateh al-Farghali on flying Turkish flag in Idlib protests: Impermissible insofar as it represents “secular rule in contravention of Islamic rule,” plus amounts to illegitimate appeal for Turkish government to defend Idlib.

The fatwa is attached to the above tweet.

Posted by: b | Sep 16 2018 7:19 utc | 115

James - it is true. I was banned at Daily Kos by the Kos 2005. Booman Tribune in 2006. Guess why? It wasn't from being a "better Democrat" that's for darn sure. LOL

Now to the pertinent matters at hand (helping people who can maintain a healthy skepticism in all things about which much is speculated but little is known).

Glenn Brown, sorry your post got swallowed. I would like to have read it.

Psychohistorian. The fact of whether my take about the US/Russia partnership won't fly at MoA means what exactly?

The US and Russia are operating in a totally coordinated fashion within Syria, whether this is acceptable to the MoA thread denizens or not.

There is only one conspiracy with which to be concerned if you are a leftist and that conspiracy is the global capitalist financial system. Putin and Russian capitalists are as much a part and parcel of that system as are Trump and US capitalists, China and Chinese capitalists (or "socialists" LOL).

All the rest of the CT hooha at the end of the day is simply misdirection and distraction. In the end we must face the truth of our impoverishment...or contuinue to fiddle about playing these silly internet games of global strategic Parcheezi which mean nothing to no one except the rulers we continue to allow to enslave us within their system.

And Assad may be a mere poodle for the ruling class but there he stands too just as clearly on the opposite side.

A great illustration of the US/Russian partnership is our very own Dear Leader himself. Russian capital has kept Trump afloat since his 4 bankruptcies rendered him creditworthless.

Is this now too a lie?

"In terms of high-end product influx into the US, Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets," Trump Jr. said during a conference in New York in 2008.

It boggles the mind anew why Trump still wanted to become President in 2016. Or as the story goes, maybe he didn't. After the midterms he will likely want even less to be stuck in that shithole on Pennsylvania Ave when the IRS releases his tax returns to a newly empowered Demotardic House Committee.

To Bevin's good point about the exhaustion of empire wrought by endless military entanglement. The Russians are already thoroughly bogged down in Syria. Their entrenchment will only grow more costly with this new looming battlefront in a not terribly strategic outlying region which is notable mostly for its various factional rivalries.

The US partners of course are also lurking there embedded with those dastardly Kurds who have their own designs and seek reward for booting ISIS but the US would be most foolish indeed to bail out Russia at this stage of the endgame by jumping in feet first. Not to say the fools won't rush in again but the US is busy exhausting its resources in other parts of the world and hasn't much to lose (or gain) in whatever the Syrian outcome.

So from that standpoint it does make sense for Russia, Turkey and mostly Israel to play Trump who is of course easily played and try to draw him in deeper. I don't see this happening at least until after the midterms and probably not then either. Because the political focus will immediately shift to the 2020 election and say what you want about Americans but there is not now nor has there ever been any desire among the voting public to fight yet another hot war in middle east.

Posted by: donkeytale | Sep 16 2018 15:43 utc | 116

donkeytale @116

What seems like forever ago, psychistorian actually said (quoting you):

""After all, the US and Russia are on the same side as they coordinate every move." is another lie that does not sell at MoA, IMO"

It's fairly self-explanatory.

Your reframing of his quote is just self-serving manipulation of psychohistorian comment. Your "immoral equivalency" is just serving the interests of US capital. Debate has moved on. Do keep up!

Posted by: ADKC | Sep 16 2018 19:19 utc | 117

The stubborn donkey has returned with the same tired tale.

The mess of dingleberries hidden under his tale is almost funny.

But what's really offensive is the flatulence of this pack animal that carries water for the Empire. Fed too many table scraps, I'd say. I'd guess that's why he was banned from Kos. LOL.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Sep 16 2018 20:02 utc | 118

Grieved @111--

I've come across other segments of that video on Twitter but never shared their links here before. I'm pretty sure they've also been posted at SyrPers. Next time I see one I'll repost it here.

Posted by: karlof1 | Sep 16 2018 20:25 utc | 119

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