UN chief urges talks to avoid Idlib bloodbath, while NATO threatens war to defend terrorists

United Nations chief Antonio Guterres this week decried a Russian-backed Syrian offensive to retake militant-held Idlib province. But the fact is, terrorist groups need to be eradicated, and the NATO powers are backing them.

The UN secretary general urged a redoubling of the Astana talks process initiated by Russia, Iran, and Turkey to end conflict in Syria. This is while Turkey has reportedly stepped up supplies of weapons to militants in Idlib, the northwest province under the control of extremist factions.

Furthermore, the US and other NATO powers, Britain and France, are threatening to launch large-scale military strikes on Syria in the event of the Assad government forces moving ahead with a planned offensive.

Guterres warned the military operation to wrest control of the area from illegally armed groups would cause a “bloodbath.” He urged a “non-military” solution to the conflict. He needs to get real.

This amounts to the UN using a call for diplomacy to tie the Syrian Army’s hands behind its back. Surely, the priority for Guterres is to condemn the use of violence by the US, Britain, and France against a sovereign nation, which has the legal right to assert control over its territory being held by foreign-backed terrorist groups.

Photo: Aaref WATAD / AFP

Vasily Nebenzia, Russia’s ambassador to the UN, says that the Syrian Army and Russian allies are trying to ensure minimal civilian casualties. But, he added, there can be no peaceful settlement to the conflict until all extremist groups are eliminated.

Recall that any time the Syrian Army moves to liberate cities and towns under the siege of militants, UN bureaucrats always join the gallery of Western governments and media depicting the operations as wanton violence against civilians.

What the UN, the US, and its allies are doing is a cynical media maneuver to delegitimize the Syrian government and its sovereign right to eradicate armed groups. The militants are not “moderate rebels” as the Western media pretend. They are the most heinous terrorist brigades which have held civilian populations under a reign of terror.

A medley of names – Al-Nusra, Hayat Tahrir al Sham, Ahrar al Sham, Jaysh al Islam, Islamic State, and so on, cannot hide the fact that they are all affiliated with the original Al-Qaeda terrorist network.

Recall, too, the decisive battle for East Aleppo in December 2016. When the Syrian Army and its Russian allies were moving to recapture Syria’s second major city, the Western media was screaming denunciations of supposed war crimes, barbarity, and even Nazi-like genocide against civilians. Again, UN officials were lending credence to claims by Washington, London, and Paris that the Syrian-Russian offensive on East Aleppo was going to lead to a bloodbath.

Fortunately, the Syrian and Russian authorities ignored the histrionics and proceeded to liberate East Aleppo in short order. Thousands of civilians rejoiced at their release from years-long siege by the Al-Qaeda-affiliated terrorists who subjected them to unspeakable cruelty.

Those Western-media-friendly “rebels” fled to what is now their last remaining stronghold, Idlib.

There are estimated to be 10,000 fighters among a civilian population of three million.

As Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova points out, many civilians are held hostage as human shields by the terrorist brigades, as in earlier sieges, such as East Aleppo. It is therefore a moral, legal, and military imperative for the Syrian Army to salvage its civilians from criminal captivity.

Several UN Security Council resolutions mandate the elimination of the terrorist groups in Syria. Doublethink or duplicity, some of those organizations are even proscribed as terrorists by Western governments.

The criminal gangs are making their last stand, refusing to lay down their weapons. Syrian government forces are therefore entitled to vanquish those militants who have run amok for the past eight years, destroying millions of families, centuries of cultural heritage, and reducing the once-developed republic to ruins.

Nikki Haley, the insufferably arrogant US ambassador to the UN, this week said: “Russia, Iran and [Bashar] Assad are demolishing Idlib and asking us to call it peace.

Alexander Lavrentiev, Russia’s envoy to Syria, rebutted such claims as overblown because, he said, an offensive is not even underway. A view supported by other independent reports.

Hysterical Haley doesn’t have any shame lecturing others when her country’s air force obliterated the Syrian city of Raqqa last year, indiscriminately killing thousands of civilians. The alleged purpose of defeating terrorists wasn’t even a success because it is believed many of them ended up in Idlib, given safe passage by the Americans.

What US forces – illegally present in Syria – did in Raqqa was to simply destroy more of the country’s infrastructure, as they have done by blowing up bridges in Eastern Syria. In that way, the US is on the same side of the terrorists for the objective of regime change against President Assad.

The intervention of Russia, Iran, and Hezbollah on the side of the Syrian Army is a wholly different category from that of the US and its NATO allies bombing Syria. Russia, Iran, and Hezbollah are legally mandated by request of the Syrian government to help liberate the country from the criminal US-led forces, both overt as in warplanes, and covert in the form of the Al Qaeda-linked terrorist brigades doing Washington’s dirty work on the ground.

What is pathetic is the mealy-mouthed duplicity of the United Nations. Its leadership is indulging the charade of the US and its allies of distorting the violence in Syria as some kind of struggle between government forces and “moderate rebels.

Now that the “rebels” are seen for what they are – at last, despite massive Western media deception – the UN bureaucrats are playing the “humanitarian card.” Secretary General Guterres claims that for Syria “there is no military solution.” He wants Syria and Russia to call off their offensive on Idlib. What for? To buy time in order to give the terrorists an escape route to some other country?

Would the UN honcho make such a preposterous proposal to the United States if, say, Oregon were somehow taken over by illegally armed groups, ones that were composed of foreign jihadists backed by foreign governments?

Panning away from Syria, it is evident that international security conditions are heading for a potentially disastrous breakdown, in particular between the US and Russia. In this situation of lawlessness and rogue state conduct, the United Nations is appearing like the toothless, effete League of Nations in the run-up to World War II.

What the world needs is the UN to fulfill its role of upholding international law and calling out criminal states. The US and its NATO allies are the rogues in today’s world without a doubt. What they have done, and are doing, to Syria, covertly and overtly, is a monumental violation of laws, morality and truth.

There seems to be no point in engaging with deluded liars. Syria, Russia, Iran, and Hezbollah should proceed to liberate the people of Idlib, put an end to the war, and eradicate the terrorist disease that Washington and its criminal cronies infected the country with.

Originally published: Finian Cunningham (RT | Op-Ed)

Finian Cunningham (born 1963) has written extensively on international affairs, with articles published in several languages. Originally from Belfast, Northern Ireland, he is a Master’s graduate in Agricultural Chemistry and worked as a scientific editor for the Royal Society of Chemistry, Cambridge, England, before pursuing a career in newspaper journalism. For over 20 years he worked as an editor and writer in major news media organizations, including The Mirror, Irish Times and Independent. Now a freelance journalist based in East Africa, his columns appear on RT, Sputnik, Strategic Culture Foundation and Press TV.

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