News Release

Major Attack on Syria Approaching?


PETER FORD, peterford14 at
Ford was the U.K.’s ambassador in Syria and Bahrain before joining the United Nations to work on refugee issues. He is the co-chairman of the British Syrian Society. He recently wrote the piece “Is a Syrian Suez approaching?

Ford recalls the Suez crisis: “The plan was for France, soon joined by the U.K., to invade Egypt on the pretext of safeguarding the Suez Canal, in hopes of precipitating the overthrow of President Gamal Abdel Nasser. The Tripartite Aggression, as the Arabs call it, was duly triggered on 29 October 1956, when Israel invaded.”

He warns that a similar plan may be unfolding in Syria: “September 2018 is likely to witness another tripartite aggression based on pretexts and plotting, this time involving the U.S. alongside the U.K. and France. The victim now is Syria.

“The three governments in April staged a rehearsal for the upcoming performance, responding with bombing raids to the alleged use of chemical weapons in Douma. While Plan A for the raids involved heavy attacks on presidential offices and armed forces command and control centers, President Donald Trump was reportedly talked down from this by Secretary of Defense James Mattis, concerned by the prospect of possible clashes with Russia and risks to U.S. forces stationed in Syria.

“Aspects of the Douma operation conspired to make it likely that Plan A would be given a fresh run, which is now imminent. …

“It is not necessary to rehash the mountain of evidence pointing to the probability that Douma was fabricated. Suffice to say that OPCW [Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons] inspectors, in their interim report presented on 6 July, stated that they had found no evidence that chemical weapons such as nerve agents had been used, and that the evidence for the use of chlorine as a weapon was inconclusive. …

“Were there any doubt that skulduggery was afoot, it was removed by media reports, based on Russian statements and briefings, of the White Helmets being on maneuver in the vicinity of Jisr al-Shughur, and the transfer to a nearby village of canisters of chlorine, under the direction of English-speaking special forces or contractors.

“Simultaneously, reports appeared of the U.S. bolstering its naval presence in the Gulf and land forces in Iraq on the borders with Syria. Russia has moved more of its naval forces into Syrian territorial waters in response to the warning of imminent action, say reports.

“How could anybody be so credulous as to believe a conspiracy theory like this, and from such tainted sources? Was it for a moment believable that the British or the Americans could be so duplicitous as to create for themselves a pretext to bomb a weak country in the Middle East? No need to go back as far as Suez to answer that; a quick recap of events in Iraq (weapons of mass destruction again) and Libya (baselessly alleged imminent massacres in Benghazi) would suffice.”