New reports have spotlighted the role of the West, Israel and some Middle Eastern countries in fanning the flames of the bloody unrest in Syria.
According Syrian sources, Israeli airplanes are smuggling weapons into Iraq's Kurdistan region, which are then smuggled into Syria with financial assistance from Qatar.
Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government President Massoud Barzani has facilitated the operations of illegal Israeli firms in the region.
The Syrian sources also revealed that Washington has trained 400 al-Qaeda militants in European countries. They are then reportedly transferred to Syria to carry out acts of violence.
Meanwhile, Russian Ambassador to the United Nations Vitaly Churkin has lashed out at Saudi Arabia and Qatar for funding and supplying weapons to armed Syrian opposition groups.
The unrest in Syria began in March 2011, with demonstrations being held both against and in support of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's government.
The West and the Syrian opposition accuse the government of killing protesters, but Damascus blames “outlaws, saboteurs, and armed terrorist groups” for the unrest, insisting that it is being orchestrated from abroad.
The following is a rush transcript of Press TV’s interview with Stephen Lendman, author and radio host, about the issue:
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said it, as it was: financing of illegal armed groups, support for extremists, hiring mercenaries and fanning the flames of sectarianism. Which [are those] countries and why haven’t they stopped?
He is talking mainly about Washington. There is no question this is a Washington-orchestrated war. It is a low-level war to the extent that NATO has not gotten directly involved. But it is exactly what happened in Libya last year. An insurgency began; Washington orchestrated it; insurgents were recruited; they were funded; they were armed; they were US special forces, British special forces, CIA, MI6, Qatari special forces. They are in Syria now; they are directing these massacres, these killings. They are funding, they are training; they are picking targets; they are leading these dead squad games to places like Houla [and] Takiba. They are picking up who to slaughter. They go after pro-Assad loyalists.
You always have to ask, when terrible incidents occur, whether it is car bombings, whether it is massacres of civilians, cui bono, who benefits? Assad gets nothing from this. Only the opposition gains. Assad is the victim. The victim is being blamed for the perpetrator’s crimes. But again make no mistake. The nexus of this struggle emanates from Washington, doesn’t matter whether it is Obama, [former US President] George Bush or anybody else. Syria, in other regional countries, has been targeted for regime change for years, at least a decade. It was only the question when each one would come up. Syria’s turn came up and violence has been raging since early last year.
Sergey Lavrov also accused some of these countries, including the Arab countries and some Western countries, that they are trying to undermine this six-point peace plan and of course, along with that, we have threats of civil war that is being echoed from different corners from officials. So, is that something that is the goal when it comes to these countries for backing the opposition, that they want to undermine the six-point peace plan; they want to make sure that it fails in order to achieve their goals?
I have written about Kofi Annan. I have written several times about him. During his tenure as UN Secretary General, a decade, a solid decade, he never did a thing to stop imperial wars. He is not doing it now. His so-called peace plan puts the onus on a side. He barely mentions these insurgents, these dead squads, these killers.
And Ban Ki-moon is the same thing. He and Anna are imperial tools. Let me make the key point, the most important point of all: What is going on in Syria now; what went on in Libya last year; what is going on in Iraq [and] Afghanistan, is the ugly face of imperialism, Western imperialism, US imperialism, Israeli imperialism: human lives don’t matter. Ravage them. Body counts don’t matter. Who bothers? Who keeps count? Conquest, dominance: That is what matters. Israel wants no regional rival. America wants no global rival. The [Persian] Gulf Council states, others of the region; Turkey is a NATO state; [also] Jordan; they are allied with the West; they are allied in these dirty wars against innocent people. The ones who suffers most are civilians. They are dying every day.
Let’s point fingers the right way. Assad is the victim. Washington, NATO, their criminal Arab League partners, they are the villains. The only way to beat them is to expose them and spread the word and get as many people as possible to understand what is going on. Truth is the weapon to defeat them. We do not have the military might. We are not violent but we can beat them through truth and that is why Press TV is so important and [so are the] programs like News Analysis and everything else that Press TV does. All of us can play some role; I try to do it on my own, on my own radio program. This is the vital thing. So, let’s point fingers where they belong.