Presidential Election drives home Syrian sovereignty and Western irrelevance

By Vanessa Beeley, first published at Off-Guardian

Vote could herald a new dawn in the Middle East

Voting in Arbin, Eastern Ghouta. An area under control of Western-backed armed groups until 2018. Photo: Vanessa Beeley

On the 27th May 2021, Syria changed history. President Bashar Al Assad was re-elected with an overwhelming majority that even outshone his popularity in the 2014 elections.

This was about Syrians sending a message to the West. A message that defied ten years of externally orchestrated war, US/UK/EU economic barbarism and an unprecedented colonial media war that has been fought from the upper echelons of the BBC, CNN, The Guardian, Channel 4 etc, yet has failed, dismally,  to suppress or deny the Syrian people’s support for their President.

A young girl held aloft in Arbin, Eastern Ghouta, formerly under control of western-backed extremist armed groups. Liberated in 2018. Photo: Vanessa Beeley

These elections were never just about the re-election of President Assad. These elections were about Syria and the Syrian people. A sovereign nation that has resisted one of the most punishing hybrid wars ever witnessed in our time. Literally every weapon in the globalist war manuals has been thrown at these resilient people. I have seen their exhaustion, their poverty, their misery first hand for many years now but last night everything was thrown aside in their defiant determination to show the West that they are unbowed, unbeaten by these sadistic tactics.

Damascus celebrations in Umayyed Square – Youssef Badawi. 

The Syrian people came together, from all sects, from all walks of life and they partied, they danced on the remnants of Western credibility and they declared the West irrelevant.

Let us not forget that in 2012, war-hawk Hillary Clinton told the world that “Assad’s days are numbered”, Clinton also advocated a No Fly Zone in Syria in 2015, whilst admitting that such measures would bring about greater bloodshed and “would kill a lot of Syrians”. The “Assad must go” mantra is now trampled under foot by the Syrian people. World leaders who participated in the dirty war against Syria have fallen by the wayside while Assad remains, perhaps more popular than ever before.

One former Guardian journalist with integrity, Jonathan Steele, wrote in 2012:

Most Syrians back President Assad but you’d never know from Western media” 

Charlie Skelton is another Guardian journalist who maintained the journalistic principles that have since been sacrificed at the altar of regime change narratives, wrote in 2012 [emphasis added]:

They’re [US/UK regimes] selling the idea of military intervention and regime change, and the mainstream news is hungry to buy. Many of the “activists” and spokespeople representing the Syrian opposition are closely (and in many cases financially) interlinked with the US and London – the very people who would be doing the intervening. Which means information and statistics from these sources isn’t necessarily pure news – it’s a sales pitch, a PR campaign. […] But it’s never too late to ask questions, to scrutinise sources.Asking questions doesn’t make you a cheerleader for Assad – that’s a false argument. It just makes you less susceptible to spin. The good news is, there’s a sceptic born every minute.”

In 2016, acclaimed journalist, John Rosenthal, gave a scathing portrayal of the universal censorship applied to any contradiction of the overarching “regime change” narratives. “The world has played with fire in Syria” he told Brics Post and he also said:

Once Washington and its European allies had established the terms of the politically “correct” narrative of the Syrian crisis, facts that failed to jibe with that narrative were unwanted and anyone who tried to report them was inevitably attacked as “pro-Assad”.”

Rosenthal describes the “stifling of debate and the homogenization of the media as regards hot-button foreign policy issues” that came to the fore under Obama’s administration, as unprecedented regarding Syria when compared to Iraq or Libya where journalistic integrity came under less attack. Rosenthal explains it thus:

I suppose it is because the Syrian “playbook”, so to speak, so closely resembled the Libyan one that the screws had to be turned even tighter.”

The West will argue that Assad winning a landslide victory, 13,540,860 votes or 95.1% is a “rigged election” because that is the only come-back they have left, aside from their rebranding of a former Al Qaeda operative as viable opposition to the Syrian presidency that has maintained stability in a country torn apart by Western regimes and their proxy mercenary forces. The number of eligible voters was 18 million, turn-out was an estimated 78%.

Children in Douma during the voting for Syrian Presidential election. Photo: Vanessa Beeley

THE CORPORATE MEDIA SPIN

The Guardian “Middle East correspondent”, Bethan McKernan, predictably spins the inevitable result as “civil war, raging poverty, but Assad is guaranteed to win Syria’s fake election”.

Of course, McKernan is not in Syria. Very few of the globalist media cartel have set foot inside Syria during the ten year onslaught against the Syrian people – unless they have entered illegally into areas controlled by the armed groups and been escorted by Nusra Front or affiliates as they produce their misinformation barrage designed to manufacture consent for another endless quagmire of criminally unnecessary war.

McKernan’s bitterness reflects the mood in the globalist camp:

Seven years later, after the regime’s Russian and Iranian allies intervened and turned the tide of the war, most of Syria is now back under Assad’s grip. On Wednesday, his citizens will return to the polling booths for a sham democratic display designed to give the president a veneer of legitimacy both at home and abroad.”

Syria and her allies have beaten back the regime change movement on every front and on Wednesday the Syrian people demonstrated the self-determination that the West would steal from them by force. The “sham democracy” resides in the West where the same corrupted media led a campaign to smear and discredit Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn, perhaps the last hope for an anti-war party in a country overrun by craven attack-dog Blairites and Conservative neocolonialism.

We don’t have a genuine two party system in the UK, we have an undeclared coalition of Zionist-influenced carpet baggers intent on waging an obscene hybrid war against their own people while plundering global resources from nations weakened by their military adventurism and economic savagery.

Look closer to home Ms McKernan and do your own people a service of providing real journalism,  instead of joining the throngs of misinformationists that have de facto killed the Syrian people with their misrepresentation of facts on the ground for ten bloody years.

If McKernan had spent time in Syria, she would know that people on the streets liberally criticise government measures without retribution as she claims in her Imperialist-narrative-protectionist article. I have regularly published interviews where Syrian people complain about electricity, water, bread, inflation, the rising cost of food – but invariably those interviews end with “God bless the President”.

As many Syrians will tell me, their lives are unendurably difficult but the President is a red line they don’t cross however tough their predicament. Their faith in the ability of the President to resolve their daily difficulties is still intact and every Syrian will tell you that it is the US alliance that is responsible for their hardship and poverty and that sanctions are impeding the Syrian reconstruction and return to the stability and security they enjoyed prior to 2011.

Of course, McKernan does not highlight the injustice of sanctions or the UK/US role in the “civil war” and “raging poverty” – she toes the establishment line and sells the narrative that enables the misery she ostensibly condemns. This is not journalism, this is criminal confirmation of bias.

McKernan talks about areas of Syria where the Syrian government “grip is more tenuous”, what she fails to explain to The Guardian readership is that areas of the north-west and north-east are still under the occupation of US/UK allied proxies which include Al Qaeda, ISIS and the Syrian Democratic Forces or YPG Kurdish contras.

The Kurdish forces are dominated by the PKK, formerly declared a terrorist organisation by the US before they were converted into a “useful” ally when Obama’s Secretary of State, John Kerry, launched the partitioning of Syria plan B. Journalists like McKernan and The Guardian have misled the British public throughout the duration of the war against Syria, a war their own regime has been extensively invested in.

Western media must be made as irrelevant as their state’s expansionist and supremacist foreign policies. No UK/US-led neocolonialist war would have ever got off the ground unless the media were on hand to swing public opinion in favour of yet another faux “humanitarian” intervention that is destined to devastate target nations and to reduce sovereign countries to failed states.

THE PERPETUAL WAR MACHINE HAS BEEN STOPPED IN ITS TRACKS

The superior US alliance-supplied military equipment of the ISIS, Al Qaeda-linked armed groups, the vast resources of the Imperialist media machine, the harnessing of UN agencies to further criminalise the Syrian government, the political and diplomatic coercive measures, the economic blockade, the burning of crops, criminal theft and occupation of resources, the attempts to isolate Syria and to demonise the Syrian President – all these measures have failed and the scenes on the streets of every town and city across Syria are evidence of this failure.

People in the West must be asking themselves why their globalist regimes have endless resources, multi-billion budgets, when it comes to waging war against a country that is no threat to “national security” or sustaining a “war against terror” when the terror brand they nominate as the new bogeyman is de facto their proxy on the ground, ethnically cleansing the people of the target nation, in this case Syria.

The US alliance fought this war to allegedly “contain ISIS”, to prevent Iranian expansion of influence in the region thus protecting Israel’s “security”, to weaken the ties between Syria and Russia (a particular grudge of the British), to derail China’s Silk Road initiative which had Syria at its center, to destroy Hezbollah and the Resistance against the Zionist savage settler-occupation and terrorism throughout the Middle East and to impose a medieval Islamist regime upon the Syrian people that would serve US/UK interests while catapulting a progressive nation back into the dark ages of religious intolerance and sectarianism.

Every single element of their destructive policy has failed and ISIS is expanding under the protectionism of the US occupation forces exposing the fallacy of any need for their military footprint in Syria and Iraq.

Iran is expanding its influence because it is arming and aiding the military organisations that are fighting the US-spawned terrorism branded as ISIS. Russia’s ties with Syria are stronger than ever before and Syria is home to a developing Russian military outpost that challenges US hegemony in the region. China is building strong trade links with Syria and its neighbours that will edge the US out of any post-war reconstruction contracts, denying the US Coalition its customary exploitation of the wars it started in countries it destroyed.

Hezbollah is stronger and more militarily prepared than ever before in history. The Palestinian Resistance is united and empowered by Iranian and Syrian military hardware and support. The Zionist entity is hemorrhaging citizens and credibility after its “super power” facade was destroyed by the Resistance in Gaza and the Occupied territories. The US Coalition Middle East project is disintegrating and Syria is rising from the ashes of this implosion with its sovereignty a beacon for the future and for the people who refused to be divided to the point of no return.

This is only the beginning of the end of Imperialism in the Middle East. We are living through historic times and Syria is leading the way.

UNIFICATION OF SYRIAN PEOPLE BEHIND THEIR SECULAR GOVERNMENT IS THE TURNING POINT

Leading up to the elections, I visited areas previously under the control of the Western-sponsored armed groups, led, in many instances, by Al Qaeda affiliates in Syria.

In these areas I saw the same outpouring of support for the President as I saw in what are always described as “loyalist enclaves” by the colonial media outlets.

The Syrian government Amnesty and Reconciliation campaigns have been largely successful in the regions I visited to the north of Damascus City. Reintegration of Syrians who were persuaded to take up arms against their neighbours has been a controversial move on behalf of a beleaguered government but it has succeeded.

We must ask if any Western regime would follow such policies if their own population turned against them violently and with heavy duty weapons supplied by hostile states.

Qaboun celebrations prior to elections. This area was controlled by armed groups until 2018. Photo: Vanessa Beeley

EU governments tried very hard to prevent diaspora Syrians from voting in the elections. Germany banned voting at the Syrian embassy in an attempt to turn back the tide of support for President Assad. Syrians gathered to protest this violation of their democratic rights – rendering the West’s demands to impose their distorted version of “democracy” in Syria, farcical.

Bashar Al Assad and his wife, Asma, voted in Douma, the town at the center of the “chemical weapons” controversy, in April 2018, that has exposed the corruption at the heavily US/UK-influenced Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) that effectively lied in its final report, omitting crucial evidence from former senior inspectors who denied any chemical attack had taken place, in an attempt to retrospectively justify US/UK/FR war crimes – the bombing of Damascus and surrounding countryside before the OPCW inspectors had even started their investigation. The message was clear – the West’s opinion and falsified condemnation has no bearing on Syrian lives.

Areas of North-East Syria also came out in support of President Assad despite the restrictions imposed upon them by the US Occupation forces and their Kurdish contras. Syrian support for their country and their sovereignty was irrepressible.

THE IRRELEVANT WEST LEFT BEHIND BY AN EMERGING RESISTANCE BLOC

In an interview with Afshin Rattansi of RT Going Underground, the Political and Media Advisor to the Presidency, Dr Bouthain Shaaban emphasised the irrelevance of the self-appointed “international community” or, in other words, the Imperialist bloc dominated by the US and the UK.

Dr Shaaban explained that the Western sponsored terrorism and the Zionist aggression were not going to inhibit Syrians practicing their constitutional rights. Countries that were invited to observe the elections were from the non-aligned bloc excluding all those nations who have contributed to the devastation in Syria. This is another message for the western political elite – their power is dwindling and with it, their global influence is in decline.

Diplomacy is dead in the West.

Ambassadors have been reduced to nothing more than talking heads for power, there are no longer any checks and balances from senior diplomats who once held sway over their government policy. These days we see juvenile reactions from gravitas-deficient representatives of UK and US bi-partisan war parties.

We in the West are represented by ambitious careerist popinjays who will run PR campaigns for sadistic regime foreign policy without a second thought for the peoples affected. It is up to us to reverse the trend and to demand that those who lead us to wars we don’t want and who kill people we identify with, in our names, are stopped. Not just this time but for always. We owe it to Syria.

I asked former UK Ambassador to Syria and Bahrain, Peter Ford, for a statement, this is what he wrote:

“The most significant thing is that the elections were held at all. With three foreign armies occupying part of their soil (Turkey, the US and Israel), with the West waging savage economic war on them to turn them against their President, with years of indescribable suffering at the hands of Western-backed militants behind them, the Syrian people delivered a resounding verdict in favour of stability as represented by the holding of elections on schedule.

The high turnout, the participation of Syrians in parts of the diaspora, and the popular rallies all underlined the message of the people to the West: leave us in peace, stop persecuting us.

Let us be honest. There are no circumstances in which these elections could have been held under impartial international supervision. The example of the OPCW whistleblowers is there to teach us that Western-dominated institutions cannot possibly be impartial. No UN observers who valued their careers or the safety of their families could have conceivably testified to the fairness of an election which gave victory to President Assad. This is the real fraud, corruption of faith in the integrity of institutional institutions which have been weaponised by Western powers.

The election has delivered a rebuff to those who thought that occupation and sanctions would make the people rise up against the government. How much longer before Western governments and their media mouthpieces like the BBC realise that their regime change by stealth policy is not going to work?”

The Syrian people have sent a powerful message and we must hear it. Long live truly free Syria.

***

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