Both the Obama and Trump administrations used alleged chemical attacks in 2013 and 2018 to justify bombing Syria. When inspectors with the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, who inspected the site of the attacks, stated that there was not evidence to prove the Syrian military was responsible, and in the case of the 2018 attack, that chemical weapons were even used, they were silenced and punished. Aaron Mate has been covering this story for several years and has testified before the United Nations Security Council three times, most recently on March 24 of this year. He speaks to Clearing the FOG about what really happened and how the OPCW is being corrupted by US influence.
On April 7th 2018, gruesome images of an alleged chemical attack emerged from the Syrian town of Douma. Dozens of dead bodies, including children and infants, appeared heaped in piles inside of an apartment building. Others lay on the street in front as if trying to escape deadly gas. Strikingly, many of the victims displayed copious foam oozing from the mouth and nose. Along with their proximity to a clear escape route, these visible symptoms suggested that something extraordinarily poisonous had killed them instantly. US officials immediately promoted the allegations of insurgent-tied groups that the Syrian army had killed the victims with chlorine gas or the nerve agent sarin, or even a combination of both.
At the United Nations, Aaron Maté debunks the OPCW’s latest attempts to whitewash the cover-up of its investigation into the alleged April 2018 chemical attack in Douma, Syria. Speaking to the United Nations Security Council, Aaron Maté of The Grayzone calls out the OPCW’s ongoing cover-up of its investigation into the alleged April 2018 chemical attack in Douma, Syria. Aaron also debunks the latest efforts by the OPCW, in a new report put out by the watchdog’s Investigation and Identification Team (IIT), to whitewash the scandal.
In the latest chapter of an international cover-up scandal, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has directly accused Syria of committing a deadly chemical attack in the town of Douma. A new report from the chemical watchdog’s Investigation and Identification Team (IIT) alleges that Syrian forces dropped two chlorine gas cylinders and killed 43 civilians on April 7, 2018. The report received an immediate and from the US Department of State, the British Foreign Office and French Foreign Ministry – the diplomatic branches of the countries that rushed to bomb Syria in response to the events in Douma.
Before it mired the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in an international cover-up scandal, the April 2018 probe of an alleged gas attack in the Syrian town of Douma achieved a milestone. After numerous claims of chemical weapons use in Syria, Douma marked the first time that an OPCW fact-finding mission (FFM) deployed on-site to conduct its own investigation. Douma was not the OPCW’s first try. Four years earlier, in May 2014, the chemical watchdog sent a team to the town of Kafr Zita. As in Douma, the organization was mandated to scrutinize insurgent-generated claims of a toxic bombing by the Syrian army.
Senior OPCW officials doctored the original report; erased the conclusions of expert toxicologists who ruled out chlorine gas as the cause of death; and thwarted the key investigate area of forensic pathology, which could have helped determine how the dozens of civilian victims in Douma lost their lives. Instead of explaining the extensive suppression, OPCW Director General Fernando Arias has avoided questions; offered false excuses; and smeared the veteran scientists who challenged the cover-up from within. Guest: Dr. Piers Robinson. Co-Director of the Organisation for Propaganda Studies, and convenor of the Working Group on Syria, Propaganda and Media. Working with the Berlin Group 21, led by veteran diplomats Hans von Sponeck and Jose Bustani to seek accountability for the OPCW cover-up.
In the early days of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons’ investigation of an alleged chemical attack in Douma, Syria, expert toxicologists ruled out chlorine gas as the cause of death for the more than 40 civilians reported at the scene. Instead of publishing this finding, senior OPCW officials concealed it, and then launched an investigation of a veteran inspector who questioned the censorship. The suppression of the toxicologists is among a series of deceptions by the OPCW leadership to corrupt the Douma probe’s scientific process, as detailed in this new multi-part investigation by The Grayzone. More than three years later, the high-level campaign of censorship and muzzling has mired the world’s top chemical weapons watchdog in scandal.
The stated mission of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) is to ensure “a world free of chemical weapons.” From his executive suite at The Hague, however, OPCW Director General Fernando Arias has been on a different mission: keeping the organization free of accountability for an explosive Syria cover-up scandal, and trying to silence two veteran inspectors who blew the whistle. Arias has refused to address the manipulation of the OPCW’s probe into an alleged chemical attack in the Syrian town of Douma. Back in April 2018, the US, UK and France accused Syria of dropping chlorine gas cylinders that killed dozens, and bombed the war-torn country in purported retaliation.
Facing Growing Outcry, OPCW Director General Fernando Arias Went Before The UN And Told New Falsehoods About His Organization’s Syria Cover-Up Scandal — Along With More Disingenuous Excuses To Avoid Addressing It.
On the 15th April 2021 an extraordinary event took place in the European Parliament, in Brussels. An Ireland South MEP, Mick Wallace, expressed concerns over the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) handling of an alleged chemical attack in Douma, Eastern Damascus, Syria, on the 7th April 2018, which was immediately blamed on the Syrian government prior to the OPCW investigative team securing access to the site of the reported attack. A “chemical attack” that led to the US, UK and French bombing of Damascus and Homs on the 14th April 2018, targeting purported “chemical weapon” research centers, a claim denied by Syrian officials and employees at the centers.
Former UK ambassador to Syria Peter Ford on how the US and its allies continue to wage war on Syria via sadistic sanctions, an illegal US military occupation, the OPCW cover-up, and media propaganda that masks the brutality. Syria and its allies prevented regime change, but the US and its allies are continuing to squeeze Syria’s population with crippling sanctions on all aspects of civilian life and a US military occupation in Syria’s northeast breadbasket. Peter Ford, the former UK Ambassador to Syria, analyzes the state of the Syria proxy war and the ongoing propaganda campaign to whitewash it.
This should be a global scandal,” said journalist Aaron Maté on the suppression of evidence from experts from the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in order to push for war in Syria. “This is the U.S. government bombing Syria based on allegations that were later found by the investigating team to be false. But then once that team came back to write their report they were pressured by the U.S. government and had their evidence censored.” Unfortunately, it has not become a global scandal.
Jose Bustani was invited to brief the Security Council on the OPCW’s cover-up of an investigation into an alleged chemical attack in Douma, Syria in April 2018. The US, UK, and France bombed Syria after accusing the Syrian government of dropping toxic gas in Douma. OPCW inspectors later found evidence that undermined the official narrative, but were censored by their superiors under US pressure. As the OPCW’s first Director General, Bustani experienced first-hand the costs of challenging pro-war narratives.
We have read the first Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons Investigation and Identification Team (IIT) April 2020 report on alleged chemical attacks at Ltamenah. We observe that, as expected, the IIT has been loyal to its raison d’être. This has gone on for too long now. What makes it worse is the IIT’s narrative has been presented to the world as a product of many peoples’ work. In fact, a number of impartial and principled professionals no longer wish to be associated with the politically motivated reports being issued by the OPCW FFM and now the IIT. Many consider this work and these reports to be procedurally and scientifically flawed. Some of us believe they should not be seen as representing the work of OPCW inspectors at all.
OPCW Fact-Finding Mission (FFM) has determined that chemical weapons have been used or likely used in Syria. The first report of the OPCW was released April 8 and points a finger at the Syrian Arab Air Force concerning 3 attacks which occurred in Ltamenah, on March 24, 25, and 30, in 2017. The report claims the investigation team conducts its activities in an impartial and objective manner. The only reason to believe the conclusion of such a report would be the belief that the team is honest, unbiased, and has no political agenda. There is no proof presented and the 82-page report clearly states that they are not a legal body with the authority to assign criminal responsibility. The Investigation and Identification Team (IIT) Coordinator, Mr. Santiago Oñate-Laborde remarked that the investigative team has concluded that there are reasonable grounds to believe a chemical was used in the attacks.