White Helmets smuggled out of Syria by Israel for resettlement in Canada, other NATO countries | MARGARET VILLAMIZAR
After four years of financing and promoting the White Helmets, a U.S./NATO front for foreign intervention and regime change in Syria, NATO arranged for the Israeli military to evacuate 98 of its assets and their families from Syria on the weekend of July 21-22. The evacuation took place as Syrian government forces were liberating the last remaining pockets of terrorist-controlled territory in the southwest of the country. This should leave little doubt in anyone’s mind as to whose interests the so-called humanitarian rescue group serves.
The 442 people were smuggled under cover of darkness across the border and into the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, where they were picked up by UN officials and taken to an Israeli army base. From there they were transported to Jordan to be processed for fast-track resettlement in Canada, Britain and Germany.
The White Helmets, also known as Syria Civil Defence, claim to be a volunteer humanitarian organization whose members rush to the scene of airstrikes and bombings to rescue civilians, but only in so-called rebel controlled areas. They many times called for foreign military intervention in the form of “no fly zones” to be imposed against the Syrian government in its own national territory. A December 2016 TML Weekly article, which called the group “part of the imperialists’ private special forces on the civilian front,” stated, “They reinforce the aim of regime change in Syria, including acting as auxiliaries for anti-government armed groups that are financed by the imperialists which Canada supports.”
The White Helmets’ videos have repeatedly been used to provide “evidence” that the Syrian government and allied forces use chemical weapons. This is repeated over and over again by the imperialists and echoed in the monopoly media with the logic that repeating a lie over and over again will make it true. They do this in spite of adamant denials by the Syrian government that it uses chemical weapons, the absence of any corroborating evidence, the logical impossibility of some of the claims, and even evidence that the attacks were perpetrated by anti-government terrorists as “false flags.” The videos, are used without question to justify U.S.-led air strikes on Syrian government targets, which Canada and others jump in to applaud and declare as necessary, as took place in April last year.
The smuggling operation in July was widely reported by Canadian news sources. All the stories are peppered with quotes by “experts” backing up the White Helmets’ claims about the dire fate that awaited them as Syrian government forces completed the clearing out of terrorist forces like Al Qaeda’s Nusra Front and others from areas where they had been operating. Any challenge to the official U.S.-NATO narrative about the role the White Helmets have been playing is typically dismissed as the product of a Russian “disinformation campaign” against the group.
A Globe and Mail article quotes James Le Mesurier, the former British military intelligence officer and private security contractor who founded the White Helmets in 2014 as saying, “Three countries took the lead: Canada, the U.K. and Germany. But the drive, the galvanization, came from Canada.”
Canada, working in close partnership with the United Kingdom and Germany, has been leading an international effort to ensure the safety of White Helmets and their families.
Canada has been unequivocal about its support for the White Helmets. At a meeting of Foreign Ministers on the occasion of the NATO leaders’ summit in Brussels last week, I called for global leadership to support and help these heroes.
Canada has been a key partner of the White Helmets and is proud to have provided funding to support their emergency training and to increase the number of women White Helmets. We feel a deep moral responsibility towards these brave and selfless people.
Freeland and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau are said to have used “formal interventions” at the NATO summit on July 11-12 to draw attention to and enlist support from other member countries for the evacuation and resettlement of their assets. Germany and Britain in the end also agreed to accept a limited number of White Helmets and their families.
In an article published by Strategic Culture Foundation, Finian Cunningham notes that Germany’s actions in particular appear “odd,” given that Interior Minister Horst Seehofer, who personally authorized the resettlement of the White Helmets is the same person who has mounted a strong challenge to Chancellor Angela Merkel’s “open door” policy towards immigrants. He concludes, however, that what Germany, Britain, Canada and possibly others that might follow suit are doing is “taking in their terror assets,” perhaps to stop them from revealing the dirty secrets they know, should they be abandoned to their own fate.
According to unnamed sources cited by CBC, former Liberal Justice Minister Irwin Cotler, a Zionist warmonger who poses as a “human rights expert” and is knee-deep in conspiring with the Secretary General of the Organization of American States to force regime change in Venezuela, was enlisted by Canada to help broker the smuggling arrangement with Israel.
The Syrian government denounced the “criminal operation,” saying
“Israel has always lied, claiming it does not have any relation to the war waged on Syria, yet it has smuggled hundreds of members of the ‘White Helmets’ terrorist organization and of the leaders of other armed terrorist organizations in cooperation with the governments of the U.S., Britain, Jordan, Germany and Canada. This has uncovered the support provided by these states to the terrorist groups in their aggression against the Syrians and in destroying the infrastructure in Syria under false pretexts.”
Commenting on Israel’s role, Cunningham writes:
“In a stunning revelation of the foreign links to the extremists in Syria, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered his military forces to evacuate up to 800 militants belonging to the so-called White Helmets. They are the propaganda merchants for Nusra Front and other al-Qaeda-linked terror organizations.”
Netanyahu announced that the blatant intervention to rescue the jihadists in southwest Syria was made at the personal request of U.S. President Donald Trump and the Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, “among others.”
Separately, there were reports of four senior jihadist commanders being given safe passage by Israeli forces out of Syria as the Syrian army closed in on the last-remaining militant strongholds around the southwest city of Daraa and Quneitra province.
Nor was it coincidental that the evacuation operations were accompanied by Israeli air strikes on Syrian government facilities in Hama province.
Imperialist financing and political support for White Helmets
In May a State Department official told CNN that the U.S. had provided $33 million to the White Helmets since 2013. Its largest single backer, though, is said to be the British Foreign Office. A spokesperson for Global Affairs Canada said recently that Canada had given $7.5 million to the group over two years. The money was said to be for training in explosives-removal techniques, and to recruit volunteers, particularly women – a typical attempt by the Trudeau Liberals to give their interfering, pro-war activities a progressive appearance. An example is their special envoy’s “affirmative action” work to recruit and train women to be part of the imperialist-backed Syrian Opposition’s High Negotiating Committee that has repeatedly foiled attempts to put an end to the war through dialogue.
Canadians should reject with contempt the role Canada is playing in support of the U.S.-led war of terror in Syria, as well as any suggestion that its actions are based on humanitarian considerations, concern for human rights, democracy, women’s rights or any other high ideal. The time is now to organize for an anti-war government and to make Canada a zone for peace.
- “Promotion of ‘White Helmets’ Serves Nefarious Aims,” TML Weekly,December 10, 2016.
(With files from SANA)
TML Weekly, September 1, 2018 – No. 29