Land Destroyer interview by Kourosh Ziabaria, published by Tehran Times.
September 26, 2012
A U.S. journalist says the United States and its allies are taking serious steps to launch a military strike against Syria.
“We can expect to see the mechanisms at play in undermining, dividing, and destroying Syria next turned on Lebanon and Iran if and when critical mass can be reached to topple Syria’s government,” said Tony Cartalucci in a recent interview with the Tehran Times.
Cartalucci, who is based in Bangkok, Thailand, writes for different news websites including Global Research and Activist Post and is currently co-authoring a book with geopolitical analyst and photographer Nile Bowie, titled, “Subverting Syria” available through Progressive Press.
Following is the text of the interview:
Q: You’ve written on unrest in Syria extensively. The opponents of the government of President Assad claim that his government has resorted to violence and killed many protesters and civilians, while the Damascus says that certain Western countries are providing the insurgents with weapons and money. Please comment over this.
A: The violence began from the very beginning of the so-called demonstrations. There were undoubtedly well-intentioned demonstrators in the streets. Unfortunately, many of the organizations that gathered them had very sinister intentions.
Acts of vandalism, arson, and assault were being reported by even Western news agencies by March of 2011. This, by necessity, would bring armed security forces onto the streets in any country — as was the case in Los Angeles during the 1992 riots. In LA, the protesters were more lightly armed, and the overwhelming presence of thousands of National Guard soldiers and Marines quelled the violence in days. Still government forces killed several people, and in total 53 would die in the violence.
The difference in Syria is that the unrest was designed to be sustained and increasingly violent. To introduce this increasing cycle of violence, third party groups began targeting unsuspecting protesters as well as security forces charged with minding the protesters. These “mystery gunmen,” usually firing from rooftops, were reported not only by official Syrian government reports, but also by protesters and bystanders. The goal was to radicalize protesters and justify increasing violence and its subsequent support by Western backers.
We saw the same thing happen in Bangkok, Thailand in 2010 where these “mystery gunmen” targeted both protesters and security forces from the rooftops in an attempt to spike the violence and increase the stakes. In Bangkok, as in Syria, deadly crossfire would ensue, giving opposition groups and their foreign sponsors the propaganda they needed to demonize the government, while attempting to justify an increasingly militant opposition.
Now, without a doubt, this violence has escalated to the point where combat operations are being carried out by organized foreign-backed militant groups. The U.S., Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey have all made outright admissions of supporting the funding, logistics, and arming of these militants. What is evident is that the West and the Persian Gulf States have also illegally entered Syria with “journalists” serving as embedded propagandists. What is neither admitted, nor overtly evident, but most certain, is that special operations from NATO and the Persian Gulf are on the ground inside of Syria along with agents of their respective intelligence agencies.
This tactical environment was exactly what the West was seeking, and was the goal of covert violence in early 2011, and well as the gradual increase of arms and fighters sent into the crisis.
Q: Some political commentators say attack on Syria will be a prelude to an all-out military strike against Iran. Your views.
A: Commentators are saying this precisely because it is written in nearly 10 years of U.S. policy papers. Citing some examples, there is the 2007 Seymour Hersh piece in the New Yorker titled, “The Redirection.” Hersh’s conclusion that the U.S. was attempting to undermine Syria as a means of subsequently undermining and executing regime change in Iran wasn’t one he drew himself, it was an enumerated policy that members of the Bush administration had relayed to him; a policy that already at the time had been set in motion.
In 2009 in the Brookings Institution’s “Which Path to Persia?” report, Syria is again mentioned as a necessary factor that must be neutralized before proceeding on to Iran. The document details the use of violent, listed-terrorist organizations to undermine Iran, namely MKO, means of provoking a war with Iran it neither wants nor will benefit from, and mitigating perceived U.S. complicity if Israel were to strike Iran. While all of these strategies, in the 2009 report, are directed against Iran, we see many of them now playing out against Syria.
With this in mind, we can expect to see the mechanisms at play in undermining, dividing, and destroying Syria next turned on Lebanon and Iran if and when critical mass can be reached to topple Syria’s government. Also, an interesting reoccurring theme in Brookings’ “Which Path to Persia?” report is how the U.S. can lure Iran into an armed conflict. The destruction of Syria seems to be a potential means of doing this, though Iran has been very careful and adept at avoiding this pitfall.
The West lacks the political capital at home and abroad to launch an attack on Iran. An attack would unify the Iranian people further, is estimated to have little chance of destroying Iran’s civil nuclear program or setting back Iran’s armed forces, and leaves open the possibility that Iran may not even retaliate — this in order to accentuate the moral depravity of an unprovoked Western act of military aggression. Without the West committing to total war, something they can neither justify, nor politically afford, Iran will continue to exist as a growing and enduring countervailing force in the Middle East.
The West is undoubtedly seeking to undermine Iran politically, socially, morally, economically, as well as destroy it militarily. Doing this however, is becoming increasingly complicated. Even the prospect of justifying an “invasion” using a catastrophic false-flag event is waning as global public awareness of such a plot grows. The bus bombing in Bulgaria that was immediately blamed on Iran and Lebanon’s Hezbollah — even before the flames were extinguished — was met globally by doubt, even indignation at the U.S. and Israel’s rushed, dubious, and politically-motivated accusations.
As the conflict in Syria drags on, regional shareholders in Western hegemony, namely the (P)GCC and Turkey, may want to begin divesting in this losing strategy and preparing to co-exist with Iran. When that begins to happen, the prospect of a successful attack or invasion of Iran will become even more unlikely.
Q: Have you noted that the recent UN report on Syria published when Kofi Annan was the UN-Arab League envoy to Syria was produced by a number of people who have certain neoconservative attitudes and were allied with the reactionary monarchies of the Persian Gulf. Who has selected these people to provide reports on Syria?
A: Representatives of Western corporate-financier interests are pervasive throughout the United Nations. Kofi Annan himself is a trustee of the Fortune 500-funded International Crisis Group and a member of the JP Morgan International Council along with many of the very engineers of Syria’s current unrest. Likewise, a 2011 UN Human Rights Council report, and the most recent August 2012 “expert panel” report regarding Syria have been compiled by a commission headed by Karen Koning Abu Zayd, a director of the Washington-based Middle East Policy Council. Indeed, Exxon, the Saudi Bin Laden Group, former ambassadors to (P)GCC members, the CIA, the U.S. military, and combines representing the collective interests of Al Jazeera, Boeing, Chevron and many more all have representation on the board of directors next to Mrs. Abu Zayd.
These people are “selected” by the UN members that dominate its various councils — and of course the collection of corporate-financier interests that dominate each respective member. The largest corporations on Earth, emanating from Wall Street and London clearly stack initiatives with their own people, thus habitually undermining both the credibility and authority of the UN.
Clearly, not only does an immense conflict of interest exist with the appointments of Kofi Annan or Kraen Koning Abu Zayd, but immense improprieties arise with them. For the latest UN report on “war crimes” carried out by the Syrian government, we are once again treated to “interviews,” many of which were not even conducted inside of Syria, but in Geneva, Switzerland. And who was interviewed? Opponents of the government, alleged defectors, and so on.
It is not that interviews like this have no value. However, interviews alone do not make a case. They make a starting point for a real investigation, an investigation Abu Zayd’s commission failed to conduct. And because she failed to conduct a proper investigation, the result of her “interviews” is a report fit for propaganda value only; propaganda immediately capitalized on by the West for several news cycles and will be continue to be cited for dramatic effect until Abu Zayd’s next performance.
Q: What’s your viewpoint regarding the role of Iran in resolving the Syrian crisis? You have praised Iran’s initiative in hosting 30 countries in a consultative meeting over Syria. Is Iran capable of neutralizing the efforts made by the United States and its allies in isolating Syria?
A: As the conflict drags on and the West increases the cost its shareholders must pay for what appears to be a losing strategy, it will benefit these shareholders to consider divesting from Western hegemony and consider a multipolar co-existence with each other and with Iran.
Iran, by providing a forum for some 30 nations representing around half the world’s population, shows that it — contrary to Western propaganda — is not interested in unilaterally exerting its influence. By recognizing the need for reform in Syria, but recognizing the current violence is a manifestation of foreign terrorism, not rebellion, the 30-nation International Consultative Conference on Syria seeks to provide a sheltered forum for genuine parties in Syria to resolve the conflict.
In theory, this was the intention of the UN and Kofi Annan. Annan’s actions along with his affiliations attempted to undermine these efforts from the very beginning, however, and the UN has proven to be entirely compromised. Iran, by organizing this meeting, is attempting to create a true multipolar alternative to the UN in regards to Syria. Iran, Russia, and others, with true geopolitical acumen, seek non-invasive measures to solve Syria outside the UN, while the U.S. and its combine attempt to justify acts of military aggression beyond any semblance of international law.
As far as neutralizing efforts by the West to isolate Syria, it is working. The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) intends to further undermine efforts to isolate Syria in the court of public opinion and give alternative options to shareholders currently entangled in the West’s unraveling assault.
Of course, this is a good first step, but ultimately to stop the foreign subversion of Syria, the weapons, cash, and foreign fighters flowing over Syria’s borders must be stopped. Hopefully, Iran’s efforts in breaking Syria’s isolation can lead to growing international condemnation of the West’s funding of foreign terrorists, a necessary first step in implementing further measures to politically and physically block foreign intrusion.
Q: The Non-Aligned Movement summit was just concluded in Tehran and high-ranking officials from 120 member states as well as UN chief Ban Ki-moon attended the event. What’s your view regarding the efforts made by Israel and United States to undermine the summit and dissuading the world leaders and Ban Ki-moon from attending?
A: It is clear that the entire Western narrative in regards to Syria is crumbling. The use of Israel to attempt to “shame” UN chief Ban Ki-moon from attending the 2012 NAM conference smacks of desperation. The idea is to undermine both NAM and its leading members, more specifically Iran, Russia, and China, who have consistently opposed efforts to divide and destroy Syria. This too, seems to be a losing strategy for the West.
For example, the last UN General Assembly vote on Syria came with some telling results. A growing number of nations are beginning to abstain or skip votes on resolutions proposed by the West and laundered through the (P)GCC. This included India who may now be realizing the U.S. has only interests, not friends, and the destabilization Syria suffers today can easily be on any one of India’s borders as well as deep within them. Sustainable economic prosperity and progress, not to mention viable self-preservation, comes only from stability at home and abroad. Stability does not preclude reform, but requires that it is done sensibly, peacefully, and incrementally.
I believe many nations are beginning to realize that by promoting violent subversion abroad, they are further enabling its use against them at home, and are now shying away from further enabling the West’s methodology. I think the Persian Gulf states in particular are really starting to understand this in recent months.
Q: In one of your articles, you had pointed out some self-censored facts and truths which the Western mainstream media hide about Saudi Arabia, including the fact that women are not allowed to drive, the world’s foremost terrorist organization Al-Qaeda is a furtive ally of the Saudi government, the political prisoners are brutally tortured, etc. However, the United States, which constantly preaches human rights and values of Western democracy to other nations, has never protested these flagrant violations of human rights in the Arab nation. Why?
A: Corporate-financier interests in the U.S. spend an inordinate amount of money and time investing in NGOs that promote “human rights.” This is not because they believe in human rights, but because it is a convenient point of political leverage when attempting to mobilize public opinion against its geopolitical adversaries. Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Freedom House, the National Endowment for Democracy, and many more are all funded and headed by some of the most notorious advocates for war and atrocities, and contrary to what one would expect, many of these characters are card-carrying Neo-Conservatives.
Consequently, this point of political leverage is only used when geopolitical interests are in play, while an otherwise “media black-hole” forms around notorious human rights violators like Saudi Arabia who currently serves and is entwined with U.S. interests. Another good example of this is how the U.S. is leveraging “human rights” against Syria while U.S.-backed, deposed Thai PM Thaksin Shinawatra is currently on tour of the U.S. People might remember his notorious 2003 “War on Drugs” which saw over 2,800 people killed extra-judicially over the course of 90 days.
However, this doesn’t mean extensive catalogs of atrocities aren’t being compiled against the Persian Gulf states. On the contrary, just as was the case with Saddam Hussein who committed his most egregious atrocities with both U.S. support and an arsenal made possible by U.S. arms dealers, the Persian Gulf States will be retroactively convicted when, not if, the time comes.
The “human rights” racket maintained by the U.S. State Department is not only a form of political extortion, it also undermines real human rights advocacy, leading many well-intentioned people toward a false sense of security, falsely believing “someone” is watching.
The eradication of Libya’s Africans, particularly the emptying out of the entire city of Tawarga, exemplifies this better than any other recent example. Here, Fortune 500-funded Refugees International, recorded the atrocities that took place in Tawarga, and instead of using its immense influence to make it headline news, it merely published a YouTube video that garnered a few hundred views. Why? Because the militants that committed the atrocities now form the NATO-backed government in Tripoli.
The same can be said of U.S. support for state sponsorship of terrorism. These are tools clearly at their disposal and moral objections to such tactics are for public consumption only.
Q: In another article, you wrote that BBC has just received a considerable amount of money from the U.S. Congress to launch media attacks on the independent, non-aligned countries such as Iran and Cuba. What’s your viewpoint toward BBC’s and other mainstream media outlets’ coverage of Iran affairs? Isn’t their attitude toward Iran some kind of a misinformation and propaganda campaign?
A: The BBC, along with a myriad of other news agencies and pseudo-news NGOs are all underwritten and representative of the West’s corporate-financier interests. Powerful interests buying up media to control public perception is a reoccurring theme throughout the history of the printed and now broadcast word.
These corporate-financier interests, many familiar Fortune 500 companies, fund the think-tanks that produce both national policy and daily talking points for the evening news. These are disseminated to politicians for approval and to the desks of large corporate news networks to then be presented to the public. What’s worse, is that many of these news organizations share representation amongst the very think-tanks producing policy and their corresponding talking points. At face value, there are already tremendous conflicts of interest at play.
So clearly, if corporate-financier interests seek to undermine and eliminate those opposing their global geopolitical-economic hegemony, they will use the media houses they own to spread propaganda. The BBC is guilty of many very high profile incidents of outright fraud and misrepresentation, but it is their daily, and very persistent dissembling that gradually poisons the perception of Western audiences against nations like Syria and Iran.
Iran, no matter what it does in reality, will be portrayed by the West as a belligerent, irrational, and backwards threat to humanity. Increasing public awareness and alternative media’s successful challenging of the corporate-media’s monopoly has eroded the effectiveness of this propaganda. Additionally, Iran’s own very persistent efforts to counter this propaganda, not only through the skillful use of its own media organizations, but through its own actions both at home and abroad, have also helped hobble the West’s perception management.
The biggest impetus for war is public ignorance. Organizations like the BBC work ceaselessly to maintain and compound that ignorance. Nonetheless, as ignorance fades in the information age, so do the prospects of habitual warmongers.
Q: What do you think about the assassination of Iran’s nuclear scientists? The families of the victims have just filed a lawsuit against Israel’s Mossad, UK’s MI6 and America’s CIA for their possible role in the killings. What’s your viewpoint?
A: The U.S. and Israel have tacitly admitted they were behind the assassinations. They openly admit they are training, funding, arming, and regularly deploying the Mujahedeen e-Khalq (MKO). U.S. politicians openly lobby for MKO in full-page columns bought in large U.S. papers. It would interest many Americans to know that many of these lobbyists include stalwart supporters of the so-called “War on Terror,” including Rudy Giuliani, Ed Rendell, Tom Ridge, and even former-USMC Commandant James Jones. Americans should note that their own U.S. State Department lists MKO as a foreign terrorist organization.
It would also interest Americans to know exactly why MKO is listed as a terrorist organization. It had carried out a series of terrorist attacks not only in Iran against Iranians, but there was also the attempted kidnapping of U.S. Ambassador Douglas MacArthur II, the attempted assassination of USAF Brigadier General Harold Price, the successful assassination of Lieutenant Colonel Louis Lee Hawkins, the double assassinations of Colonel Paul Shaffer and Lieutenant Colonel Jack Turner, and the successful ambush and killing of American Rockwell International employees William Cottrell, Donald Smith, and Robert Krongard.
The Brookings Institution in their 2009 report, “Which Path to Persia?” admits, “undeniably, the group has conducted terrorist attacks” including attacks on civilian targets. To this day, MKO is considered even by its own supporters in Washington, a “cult-like organization” with “totalitarian tendencies.”
And like the West’s double standards regarding human rights, its policy on state sponsorship of terrorism is determined by convenience and opportunism. In other words, the U.S. is using terrorists against its enemies while accusing its enemies, in many cases, of supporting the very militants it has armed and funded.
And indeed, had Iran assassinated U.S. citizens on U.S. soil, immediate war would break out. In fact, false-flag events running along this theme, most notably the alleged “assassination plot” against a Saudi diplomat allegedly masterminded by Iran which turned out to be yet another patsy led along by US federal agents, were tried but failed.
The MKO will continue its terrorist activities with or without a spot on the U.S. State Department’s Foreign Terrorist Organization list. It was reported in March 2012 that MKO was handed by the U.S. State Department, control a former U.S. military base in Iraq to operate out of, this being with MKO currently on the U.S. State Department’s own terror list.
It appears that laws in the U.S. and across Europe are vestiges of an age where rule-of-law, or at least a semblance of it, prevailed. Those days are over. Whether the West’s abandonment of its own rule-of-laws has created the current undermining of its global legitimacy, or its declining legitimacy allowed it to discard its own laws is debatable. What is certain is that the West’s current foreign policy and agenda is unhinged both from its own population’s approval and any sense of legitimacy.