"They're Hopping Mad In The US And Saudi Arabia": Russian Strikes In Syria Spark Epic Western Media Propaganda Blitz

Tyler Durden's picture

We are now two days into Russia’s air campaign against anti-regime forces in Syria and both Moscow and the West are rushing to spin the narrative.

The frantic attempt from both sides to shape public opinion has been truly amazing to behold and the sheer amount of coverage speaks to what we said on Thursday about just how important the conflict really is for the Mid-East balance of power.

For the US, portraying Russian airstrikes as supportive of a murderous regime and as an imminent threat to civilians is key, as it allows Washington to explain away the fact that the US and its allies haven’t coordinated their efforts with Moscow. Take the following from CNN for instance, who reports that Russia has made a “strategic blunder” and that by opening an air campaign, Russia risks raising the spectre of the Soviet-Afghan war in the minds of potential jihadists who will supposedly rush into Syria to join the fight:

There is no ambiguity now about Russia's current tactics in Syria -- they are seeking to take over the airspace in the region and be the agenda-setting force on the ground, several senior administration officials told CNN.


"Yesterday's demarche to the U.S. by Russian officials in Baghdad was clear in its intent," one senior administration official said. "Make sure you don't have anyone around ISIS targets and get out of the air."


And while U.S. officials have no plans to cede Russia any ground, they also said it appears that Russian President Vladimir Putin made a dramatic chess move that the Russians have not thought through -- one official even called it a "strategic blunder."


Had the Russians been clear that they are providing support in Syria to prevent Syrian President Bashar al-Assad regime's collapse -- a scenario that would benefit ISIS -- they might have gotten some credit on the world stage.


But their very first strikes in the region hit CIA-backed anti-Assad rebel forces, Arizona Republican John McCain, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said Thursday on CNN's "New Day."


And U.S. officials note that every bomb against a non-ISIS Sunni target puts them more in bed with Iran and Hezbollah, which are Shiite. U.S. allies in the Persian Gulf warn that this could set off a huge sectarian conflict and that the deeper the Russians get into this, the harder officials believe it will be to get a diplomatic process with the Saudis and others restarted.


"It is going to be hugely tempting for the Saudis to start financing their guys again," another senior administration official said. "Syria will be a magnet for every jihadi, who will rush to fight the Russians, just like they did in Afghanistan. The problem is while this will cause problems for the Russians, it will also mean trouble for the Gulf, when the jihadists come home."


"The Russians can't be stupid," another senior administration official said. "This is going to be wildly expensive. And they can't hold out long. They know in the end there is no future for the guy (Assad) because the whole reason they had to come in is because Assad and his forces were extremely vulnerable. So we are hoping they will come to their senses, stabilize the situation and then we can agree on the Assad piece."

Now obviously, there are too many absurd statements there to count, but note (again) that Russia has never hid its support for Assad. When Charlie Rose told Putin on national US television that some people believe Russia is in Syria to help Assad, Putin said, quote, “well, you’re right.” On top of that, it’s glaringly obvious to anyone who knows anything about the global balance of power that Russia is there to support Assad and it's ridiculous for anyone to suggest that Putin isn't aware of the fact that by supporting the regime, Russia falls squarely on the side of Iran and Hezbollah. It’s also glaringly obvious that ISIS isn’t the only extremist group fighting for control of the country and the notion that the US has now finally managed to identify the “good guys” in Syria after failing to get it right for four years and that now evil Russia is deliberately targeting those good guys simply because they’re the good guys is laughable to the point that one wonders if CNN and others pushed back on being compelled to spin it that way. Additionally, it’s a little late for the US to be concerned about someone inadvertently creating a theatre that in the minds of jihadis will serve as the stage for humanity’s final battle. If Washington was worried about that they might have avoided getting involved in Syria in the first place and they definitely would have avoided training the soldiers who would go on to join the very group that’s perpetuating that idea.

And then here’s WSJ:

The White House challenged Russia’s claim that the airstrikes were targeting Islamic State militants, saying Thursday that Moscow was carrying out “indiscriminate military operations” in areas where the group isn't operating. A White House official also dismissed the possibility that Russia had inadvertently bombed non-Islamic State areas. U.S. officials say the Russian military bombed one area primarily held by rebels backed by the Central Intelligence Agency and allied spy services.


Contrary to claims by the Russian Ministry of Defense, none of the areas that were hit have a known Islamic State presence. At least two of the rebel factions attacked by the Russians—Tajamu Al-Ezzeh and the Central Division—have received weapons including advanced antitank missiles and funding from the U.S. and its allies, according to rebel leaders.


The arc that the Russian airstrikes followed begins around the town of Jisr al-Shughour in northern Idlib province near the Turkish border and adjacent to an agricultural area known as the Ghab Plain. It cuts through the central Syrian cities of Hama and Homs and ends at the Lebanese border.


Alawites—the regime’s base of support—are concentrated west of the arc in an area that includes Latakia province.


Everything east is dominated by the country’s Sunni majority, to which most of those fighting the regime belong.


A series of tit-for-tat massacres during the more than four-year conflict have solidified this sectarian fault line.

Yes, the “sectarian fault line” has been solidified and that is a hallmark of Western intervention in the Mid-East. Syria is no different. 

And BBC:

Members of the US-led coalition against Islamic State have called on Russia to cease air strikes they say are hitting the Syrian opposition and civilians.


In a joint statement on Friday, the US, UK, Turkey and other coalition members said Russian strikes would "only fuel more extremism".

And best of all there's Al-Jazeera (which is of course owned by Qatar), who takes it up another notch by suggesting that Russia is now intentionally killing civilians:

Russia accused of striking civilian targets in Syria


Activists say warplanes are targeting civilians in areas under control of Western-backed rebels, a claim Russia denies.

For their part, Bloomberg did the American public a favor by laying out the real story, albeit in an article that carries the title "US, Allies Demand Russia Stop Attacks On Syrian Opposition":

Russian forces are targeting only Islamic State, al-Qaeda affiliated Nusra Front and other terrorist groups, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Thursday in New York. The Free Syrian Army, a U.S-backed rebel group, was not among the targets and it should have a role in the political process in Syria, he added.


“The goal is terrorism,” he said. “And we are not supporting anyone against their own people.”

Assad’s government has been fighting alongside Iranian reinforcements to secure a corridor from the coastal province of Latakia, home to Assad’s Alawite minority, stretching to the capital Damascus, according to Reva Bhalla, vice president for analysis at Stratfor, a geopolitical intelligence and advisory firm based in Austin, Texas. The government has accused Qatar and Saudi Arabia of backing “terror groups,” and dismissed the criticism.


“They’re hopping mad in Saudi Arabia, the U.S. And Qatar because of their defeat and the victory of Russia and Syria and the unraveling of the fact that the U.S. and its allies are not serious about fighting” Islamic State, Syrian lawmaker Sharif Shehadeh said by phone from Damascus. “Those who claim to be concerned about the Syrian people are the ones slaughtering the Syrian people through the terrorists.”

There you go. That last passage pretty much says it all. 

Meanwhile, the Russian propaganda machine is also in high gear as The Kremlin is jumping at the opportunity to portray Putin as the man who saved the world when no one else was willing to. Here's Bloomberg again:

Vladimir Putin may have caught the U.S. and its allies off guard by striking Syria, but his propaganda machine was ready.


“A hundred dead terrorists,” a news presenter on Russia’s No. 2 network announced early Thursday, just hours after the bombing of what Putin has called “evil-doers” began. She then cut to a correspondent in Syria who lauded the precision of the strikes as aerial footage of the attacks supplied by the Defense Ministry aired.


Over on Channel 1, the most-watched station, a parade of politicians, analysts and religious leaders -- both Christian and Muslim -- rolled by justifying the use of force on both legal and moral grounds. 


“This is more than just military strikes against Islamic State,” said the editor of National Defense magazine, Igor Korotchenko, after parliament unanimously authorized the use of force. “We are protecting the values of humanity and taking a stand against the most extreme forms of obscurantism and terror.”

What's amusing there is that as overstated as it is, that narrative is actually closer to the truth than what's being fed to the public by the Western media. 

In any event, the important thing here is to cut through all of this and extract the bits that help to tell the story of what's actually taking place in Syria. As we detailed on Thursday, this is effectively a Mid-East coup by Russia and Iran wherein Tehran will replace Riyadh as the regional power broker and Moscow will supplant Washington as the superpower puppet master. And on that note, we close with another excerpt from the WSJ piece cited above:

Iran’s Foreign Ministry welcomed Russia’s military intervention in Syria on Thursday, saying it was the right step to fight terrorism and a move toward bringing stability to the region.


“Fighting terrorism effectively requires a strong and serious will and has to be based on cooperation with the governments of Iraq and Syria,” Marzieh Afkham, spokeswoman for the ministry, said according to Iranian media reports.


Ibrahim al-Amin, a Lebanese commentator and newspaper editor close to Hezbollah and Iran, said Moscow essentially provided a green light for a counteroffensive against rebels across the political spectrum.


“From our side, we can no longer ignore the decision of the axis of resistance, backed by Russia, to not only prevent Assad’s fall but to also weaken all his foes. All his foes without any distinction,” wrote Mr. Amin in the Lebanese daily Al-Akhbar on Thursday.


“We must benefit from Russian support to launch tough and decisive battles in several places in Syria,” he added.


Before the latest Russian intervention, Iran played a pivotal role propping-up pro-regime militias made up largely of Alawites and Shiites. It has orchestrated thousands of Shiite fighters mainly from Lebanon and Iraq with Hezbollah being in the lead.


But thousands of rebels regrouped in several enclaves north of Homs, in towns like al-Rastan and Talbiseh. Russian jets hit both civilian and military targets in these two towns and five surrounding villages, said Rashid al-Hourani, a Syrian army officer from the area who defected to the rebels in 2012.


He said the airstrikes were followed with a barrage of artillery fire from several nearby positions where pro-regime Alawite and Shiite militias, including an Iran-backed group known as the Ridha Brigade, have been massing over the past few days.

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fukidontknow's picture







Took Red Pill's picture

Just like when WTC building 7 was reported to have collapsed before it actually did, Russian bombings in Syria killed civilians before the bombings started;


NoDebt's picture

Shades of history repeating itself here, I think.  Like when the US told Great Britain to back off of Egypt after... what was it?  WWII?

Sorry, you don't run this joint any more.  Go home.

greenskeeper carl's picture

I wish it was it was so simple as "go home". I have seen nothing that would suggest this govt won't do something insanely idiotic to escalate things. they will not be able to tolerate getting pushed out. We are ruled over by arrogant authoritarians ho care only about their power and influence, and don't care who gets hurt or killed in the pursuit of these interests. I would hope they will be smart enough to back off before risking a war with another nuclear power, but what have you seen in recent memory that suggests these people aren't that stupid? in their view, whats the point of even having a world, or civilization, if we can't rule it all?

New_Meat's picture

Homs is notorious for "pushed-out ones"

holmes's picture

US neocons must be shitting in their pants this morning.

Grimaldus's picture

Progressives are in charge.

Neocons cheer from the sidelines.

Try to shake off the progressive brainwashing dude, mmmkay?





jeff montanye's picture

victoria nuland says you can't find your own ass with your hands.

TimmyB's picture

The Deep State is in charge. The red team vs. blue team bullshit is a show for the rubes.

cybervigilante's picture

McCain shits his pants anyway, so I'm not sure What he'll do ;')

cybervigilante's picture

McCain shits his pants anyway, so I'm not sure What he'll do ;')

Kassandra's picture

What's more amazing is if I mention any of this to anyone, they have no idea what I'm talking about. Syria? Huh? What?
Mission accomplished.

strannick's picture

Love how the conversation has started talking of CIA backed assets, and Saudi funded mercenaries. Kind of detracts from the fairy tale narrative of "homegrown opposition to the Assad regime."

Spitzer's picture

Russia's air campaign is legal under intl law too. 

conscious being's picture

Elliot, just want to say, I always liked you and the deal with the hooker was a real bum rap.

jeff montanye's picture

ditto.  the real guy got a little too close to some painful truths and was taken out.

like this guy:  http://www.veteranstoday.com/2013/02/20/100-certain-911-author-was-kille...

jerry_theking_lawler's picture

Yep, the light flicked on and the roaches are caught out in the open....now they are scurrying for cover.

The Amerikan people are slowly understanding what has been happening over there and they don't necessarily like it....aka, why you need another school shooting and a call to grab the guns.




Socratic Dog's picture

Err, I assume you meant "another "faked" school shooting"".

August's picture

Over at National Review Online, Mr. Krauthammer is very, very upset indeed, that "our Allies on the ground" are being killed by Russian airstrikes.

Krauthammer feels humiliated.   Made my day!

Victory_Garden's picture

"Shades of history repeating itself here, I think."

It would be wonderful if it were so simple and one could just chalk up the repeating of history to plain ol stupidity.

Alas, it is not a repeating of history that the ignorant are too blind to see, it is a slow-motion moneychanger game played for moar world domination using the money-god to complete the supposed final solution in which isreal was created to be the fall-guy matchstick that ignites the world fires to burn out all those useless esters, and breathers. Sum fun, huh? SUCKERS!!!!

History indeed repeats, but this next quelling of the ignorant masses is supposed to be the last to eliminate most of the breathing and non-breathing biological life on the planet earth. The sad truth is, these scumbags have pitted country against country using all the sorted lunatics and puppet politicians to further the evil world domination and population elimination agendas for decades. What makes this particular cycle different is, never has there been so many that are aware of the evil rottenchld empire of dust, and yet still play along with the game letting fear and greed be their controlling factors.

How much longer can this hokie-tokie propaganda that only the really stupid can believe coming from the media garbage charade-news and world war zio-blah blah play to promote it all go on? The stupid. It hurts!!

Can't we just see the dollar crash and get on without the world woar? Like, break the repetitious cycle and NOT repeat the horrible mistakes of the past so the wicked rottenchild and roccofeller empire of dust can profit again from so much death and destruction? How about the world spends all that money-god stuff on everything good that promotes peace and growth and fair trades instead?

Did ya hear that lamp posts and banksters make for a very chic PC sign of good times ahead?



Clint Liquor's picture

At least the the media is finally reporting that the CIA was/is actively trying to overthrow Assad. More conspiracy theory becomes conspiracy fact.

pazmaker's picture

exactly!!  I was just stating this to a coworker.....Now the USA has admitted that Al Nursa is backed by the CIA!

Freddie's picture

I thought eithe Obama, McCain or that other scum bag Petreaus said it would take 100 years of US troops and fighting to beat ISIS??

I guess they just wanted to spend or steal $100 billion a year fighting fictional ISIS.   What evil scum American "leaders" are. 

Usurious's picture

fred, gotta grow the debt somehow..........the welfare/warfare state demands it

Victory_Garden's picture

"What evil scum American "leaders" are."

Ding...ding...ding!!!...we have a winner here folks!!!

That is the smack you down knock in the face horrible and wicked sad truth of this horrendous insane situation. What evil scum American "leaders" are, and the world knows it. Everybody knows it and yet, the shitshow goes day after frigging day after day!

Side note: dear world's people, please do not hate the amerian people for what this out of control insane leadership is doing. We the heart of America are not able to stop this crazy absolutely wicked war mongering so the few can war profit. Please forgive the drugged out on TV nation for drinking the kool-aid of deceptions, lies, and dis/mis-information in a nation where it is legal to lie, steal, and be as corrupt as possible. Only in this nation can criminals like hitlery cliton get away with blatant criminality and treason and nothing is done to her. There is no law for the rich and evil, it is only for the poor and that kind of justice is just admiralty law revenue generation, and bond support.

Stop the train of stupid! All these zio/faci/jesuit/etc puppets and licksticks are all working for the same goals of the rotenchilds and roccofeller bankster agendas. Just wait until those lizards are all dug out of the chinese tunnels and hideaways they are planning to hide in for the next world after...museum pieces they be in the future representing the epitome of stupid evil incarnate and what idiotic things in the human flesh will do for a buck. It's gonna be a real hit!





chubbar's picture

When they get around to reporting that ISIS is a CIA construct then I'll consider pulling out the party hat. Until then, it's media obfuscation of the facts surrounding every conflict that region has seen this past decade. In fact, I'll say that the mention of the CIA is intentional to throw up a stopgap in the event the ISIS connection starts getting traction in the alternative or overseas media.

lesamourai's picture

How's this - CNN reporting on 'the US led ISIS coalition'


Motasaurus's picture

Do not weep for the dead or mourn his loss; rather, weep bitterly for him who is exiled, because he will never return nor see his native land again. 

11b40's picture

Based on the number of young men of fighting age I see in this refugee movement into Europe, they are not exiles.  They seem to have chosen to flee instead of fight for their native land, leaving family behind.

Now, I'm not saying I would not want to do the same under similar circumstances.  I have been in war zones, and the best thing a civillian can do is get the hell out, preferably in advance.  However, I am saying that I would not leave my family behind. 

Exiles are one thing, war refugees are another, and economic migrants yet another.  All are tragic, but what are the soultions?

Volkodav's picture

They are not Syrians 90%...and yes most military age...

they were intentionally pre gathered to turn loose on Europe


New_Meat's picture

grunts know these things!

cybervigilante's picture

Ninety percent of the "refugees" are young men. What happened to the women and children? So much for lifeboat rules. Germany has been duped by the US to take an unlimited number, to "quiet down" the refugee crisis we created. Merkel licking Sam's uh, boots, again. Wait until Germany finds how many of those poor refugees hate Everything German culture stands for, and just want to Kill, Kill, Kill.

greenskeeper carl's picture

The hypocrasy here is blindingly obvious, yet no one, even russia, really calls the US on it. The US govt has killed millions of people in that region over the past decade, and thats not even including the 500k children that 'were worth it' to kill to sanction iraq. And the US is trying to lecture someone else on bombing civilian target? These people are absolutely insane. Its truly 1984 in the US. Im not one of the Putin worshippers on here, but I hope they go in and destroy ISIS, which everyone knows is an intentional creation of the US, in a couple months and makes the usgov look stupid as hell. Im so sick of this shit. Enough already

strannick's picture

Yes, MaelinecAlbrechts line aoiut those half million kids being acceptable collateral damage was a rare moment of truthiness from the Satanists in power.

Never One Roach's picture

It's good to see something else (isis) getting Monkey Hammered instead of gold for a change.

August's picture

Actually, it's Madeleine Korbel. 

Who knew!

Oldwood's picture

The centrifuge is spinning faster and faster now in an effort to separate us all into our specific strata, our molecular weights. This concentration, this refinement is being orchestrated for the exact effects we see in the world...and here on ZH. This power that is doing this IS NOT a supporter of Jews, or Neocons, or Neolibs, or MIC, or communists,or the CIA.These groups or "interests" are but the tools needed.

This whole thing...the economic and human disasters, has been playing out in slow motion. Nothing instant or impulsive or even reactionary about it. Like a fine tuned clock winding its way down.

I don't claim to have a clue WHO is behind it, and don't know that it even matters. The only thing that IS important is that we recognize that it is happening...that we are being manipulated with CAUSE, long range CAUSE. If we humans lack anything relative to our own survival, it is the ability to plan and anticipate the future beyond the very shortest term. To look at our foreign policies, to look at our immersion into debt, tells us everything about the human race. If we want to truly change, we are going to HAVE to think about the future, and not about our immediate selves. We are blinding ourselves to our on consequence, just as a cow will pursue its feed as it walks voluntarily into the kill chute.

fockewulf190's picture

"I don't claim to have a clue WHO is behind it, and don't know that it even matters."

Alex Jones is screaming himself silly telling everyone and anyone that it´s the "Globalists" (and please buy some Super Male Vitality, dope your kids up with our new shipment of Child Eaze, and fork over some dough for my Money Bomb because my divorce is costing me a fortune).

Hugh_Jorgan's picture

 I'm not a fan of, ahem... Mr. Jones. However, I think in a broad sense he is correct. The problem is that he never connects the dots to explain that Globalists, means a heckuva lot of people and organizations all scrambling for a place at the global governance table for them and their progeny. You can't pin down one or two bad guys because anyone with lots of money, and/or power/influence could be part of the mob that is murdering Mankind's freedom for their own gain. I think without opposition this ends with an unholy combination of 1984, Minority Report, The Matrix and Brave New World in the "developed" world as the panacea for the millions of dead from the world war these same devils started in the first place.

fockewulf190's picture

But I thought "The Empire is on the run!"?

Herd Redirection Committee's picture

Mr Jones has never once, in his career, revealed that Israel is in fact the State of Rothschild.

Why would he conceal, or fail to reveal, such vital information?

socalbeach's picture

That may be true, but he has had a lot of guests on who are about as anti-Israel/Zionist as you can get.  3 examples would be Texe Marrs (Christian preacher, author, and internet radio host), David Icke, and recently David Duke who he had on for a 2 hour debate.  Just found this debate in doing research on your assertion, here it is.

David Duke Debates Alex Jones (8-18-15)

jeff montanye's picture

this may be a too-quick reaction, but zionism has better opponents (but possibly not that would go on that show).

palmereldritch's picture

My take on him is that he is the anti-freeze for the slow boiling frog. Not necessarily a psy-op.

He has unlocked a lot of minds and has provided the critical thinking tools and historical analysis necessary to think outside the standard programming for a lot of people.  What you do with it is your choice but for him to confront the built-in programmed destruction of questioning certain mythologies would limit the growth of his business and the growth of an audience of people that can become aware of the basic psy-op programming that inundates them IMO.  I think he has navigated away from those shoals to allow the maximum awareness of alternatives and avoid being shut-down by the standard refrain.  It is a powerful attack response embedded in the media.

There are still a lot of minds imprisoned in the matrix.  Jones doesn't have all the answers but at least he asks some of the questions.  Minds opened are minds that will never stop questioning...everything.

But socalbeach's point is well taken that he does not hold certain notorious criminals to task enough although I have heard him and seen his videos address their specific criminal activity in the past.  A more robust attack on that front is warranted, on that I agree.  That history is woefully insufficient in analysis and discussion.  He could do more and should move the ball forward.

ASACJon's picture

I agree with SocialBeach.  Alex is not perfect and frankly unlistenable from time to time. 

With that said, I'd rather take the 80% good and leave the rest rather than just bag on the guy for his flaws.  Sure, he could be more direct on the Zionist question. 

But think about the scenario if he were to come out full bore with what he knows is the case: WWII onward is one lying narrative after another and a significant part of that is the Jewish constituency in world power.  His revenues would take a hit from immediate .gov regulatory nonesense and he would be seared with the Nazi brand. I'm not defending that approach, but then again I'm not in a position of superiority either.

Having listened to him on and off since 2003, I think he is, overall, honestly trying to get at truth while sometimes being ambiguous on questions relating to Israel (and boarish, slick salesman like, and obnoxiously provincial.)  I'm not in his position so I won't judge harshly and find his rants at times very entertaining and motivating.

Let's be fair, too.  He did have on Duke and he did at least let the guy talk for a couple of hours.  You will not see that on NBC News anytime ever.

Lea's picture

"The hypocrasy here is blindingly obvious, yet no one, even russia, really calls the US on it."

Of course Russia has called the US on it. You should read or watch the last UN speech of Vladimir Putin.

It goes something like, quote, "Do you realize what you've done?"

greenskeeper carl's picture

I heard it, and while I kinda-sorta did call us out, it wasn't really what I mean. I want to hear someone, like Putin, stand up on TV and in front of everyone and flat out say it.


"you have murdered millions of people in wars of agression. Your wars are illegal under international law. Your arming and supporting of the insurgents in syria is illegal under international law, you have destroyed an entire region in the name of pax americana. your drone program over most of the ME is illegal. You are war criminals."


Thats what I want to hear.

Fractal Parasite's picture

That's exactly what this brave, articulate and well-informed lady said. Watch and admire.

Obama is called a war criminal in Irish Parliament by Clare Daly