Art by Yousef Amairi

Art by Yousef Amairi
the struggle continues

April 18, 2017

Are the White Helmets for real? by Ken Fuller 18 April 2017

After the recent alleged “chemical attack” in Syria, there were the “White Helmets,” relating their version of this event to the world. This should have set alarm bells ringing.
Earlier this year, a 40-minute documentary entitled “The White Helmets” was awarded an Oscar. The group known by this name claims to be an unarmed, independently-funded, neutral humanitarian operation in Syria, a “first responder” whose members dash to the scene of the latest bombardment in order to save lives, regardless of the affiliation of the victims.
Eyebrows should have been raised when two representatives of the “White Helmets” were unable to travel to Hollywood for the awards ceremony — its leader Raed Saleh due to “intense airstrikes across the country,” and cameraman Khaled Khatib because the Syrian government had canceled his passport.
Of course, members of the Academy may well have shrugged off Khatib’s non-appearance, understanding that the “dictator” Assad would obviously not be keen on him traveling to the land of “freedom.”

Raed Saleh, however, may not have been allowed in anyway. Although it is claimed that he now had a US visa, he was in fact sent packing when he arrived at Dulles airport almost a year earlier, presenting State Department spokesman Mark Toner with the unenviable task of attempting to explain to a press conference why the USA would deny the leader entry while continuing to fund his organization to the tune of $23 million (the UK Foreign Office was chipping in rather more, at $29 million).
Toner was obliged to mutter something about suspected extremist links, although he was unprepared to countenance the possibility that such links extended to the White Helmets, the organization led by Saleh.

The White Helmets claim that officially they are the “Syrian Civil Defence.” Really? No.
The forerunner of the International Civil Defence Organization (ICDO) arose in Paris in 1931, when its aim was to create neutralized zones (“Geneva zones”) in which vulnerable members of a population could find refuge during wartime.
Founded by French Surgeon-General Georges Saint-Paul, six years later it became the International Association for the Protection of Civilian Populations and Historic Buildings in Wartime, transferring its headquarters to Geneva.

In 1958, this became the ICDO, when it was granted new status as a NGO, one of the objectives of which was to establish liaison between national civil defense organizations.
In 1972, it was granted intergovernmental organization status by the United Nations. It now has 58 member-states, including the Syrian Arab Republic, which joined in 1972. The Syrian Civil Defence was founded in 1953, and was therefore a founding member of the ICDO.
So the White Helmets have a respectable pedigree? Ah, no. The Syrian Civil Defence linked to the ICDO is, you see, the genuine organization of that name, and is in no way connected to the White Helmets.
The latter group was formed as recently as 2013 by “former” British military intelligence officer James le Mesurier, a graduate of Sandhurst, the British military academy. (The UK funding is becoming somewhat more explicable, isn’t it?)
Apparently, its only international links are with its funders — the US State Department, the UK Foreign Office, and various other European patrons.
The White Helmets’ claims of financial “independence” are, therefore, as spurious as those of their “neutrality” and “unarmed” status.

So what is the relationship between the genuine Syrian Civil Defence (SCD) and the White Helmets?
Last year, in an article on the site, Vanessa Beeley told of how one SCD worker explained that, when the terrorists first invaded East Aleppo in 2012, they drove people from their homes and visited the SCD yard, where they killed some rescue workers and kidnapped others.
Some of these terrorists later became White Helmets. They stole ambulances, fire engines and eventually — outrageously! — the very name of the Syrian Civil Defence. Since then, of course, their western funders have provided them with new rescue equipment — which, video footage suggests, they seem unable to use without the risk of serious injury or death to whoever might be buried beneath the rubble.
Other SCD workers told Beeley that the White Helmets “are fake. They don’t carry out any correct procedures, either as paramedics or as search and rescue experts.”

Says Beeley: “When Syrian civilians are at risk, injured, or buried under the rubble of homes, schools and hospitals destroyed by terrorist mortar showers, it’s not Le Mesurier’s White Helmets who rush to their aid — it’s the REAL Syrian Civil Defence, a real civic organization who, up until the publication of this article, have never been mentioned by any western media outlets.”
According to Beeley, the majority of Syrians she spoke to said that they had never heard of the White Helmets, let alone witnessed their heroic rescue work.
Why would that be? Because the White Helmets are only to be found in areas controlled by the al-Nusra Front (a rebranded al-Qaeda affiliate), ISIS and other anti-Assad terrorist groups.
There is adequate photographic and video evidence to demonstrate that the White Helmets are aligned with the anti-Assad terrorists and, indeed, have participated in the execution of captured Syrian government soldiers.
As for the medical expertise of the White Helmets, Dr. Leif Elinder, a well-known Swedish pediatric specialist, when shown a White Helmets video which included scenes of the “rescuers” attempting to “save” children, had this to say:

“After examination of the video material, I found that the measures inflicted upon those children, some of them lifeless, are bizarre, non-medical, non-lifesaving, and even counter-productive in terms of lifesaving purposes.” Other doctors concurred in this assessment. (See the article by Prof. Marcello Ferrada de Noli, Ph.D., on, dated March 7, 2017.)
There is sufficient evidence, then, that the White Helmets organization is simply a component of the western propaganda war against the Assad regime and, as such, not to be taken seriously when it claims to be independent, neutral, unarmed or even humanitarian.

No comments:

Featured Story

A timely reminder:: Seymour M. Hersh on the chemical attacks trail back to the Syrian rebels, 17 April 2014

Seymour M. Hersh on Obama, Erdoğan and the Syrian rebels Vol. 36 No. 8 · 17 April 2014  London Review of Books pages 21-24 | 5870 words ...