Trump Saw A Disturbing Video, Then He Shut Down The CIA's Covert Syria Program

Tyler Durden's picture

While we've carefully documented the dynamics in play behind Trump's decision to end the CIA's covert Syria program, as well as the corresponding fury this immediately unleashed among the usual hawkish DC policy wonks, new information on what specifically impacted the president's thinking has emerged.

Thomas Joscelyn, a Middle East analyst for the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, explains in the August edition of The Weekly Standard:

Earlier this year, President Donald Trump was shown a disturbing video of Syrian rebels beheading a child near the city of Aleppo. It had caused a minor stir in the press as the fighters belonged to the Nour al-Din al-Zenki Movement, a group that had been supported by the CIA as part of its rebel aid program.


The footage is haunting. Five bearded men smirk as they surround a boy in the back of a pickup truck. One of them holds the boy’s head with a tight grip on his hair while another mockingly slaps his face. Then, one of them uses a knife to saw the child’s head off and holds it up in the air like a trophy. It is a scene reminiscent of the Islamic State’s snuff videos, except this wasn’t the work of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi’s men. The murderers were supposed to be the good guys: our allies.

Trump pressed his most senior intelligence advisers, asking the basic question of how the CIA could have a relationship with a group that beheads a child and then uploads the video to the internet. He wasn't satisfied with any of the responses:

Trump wanted to know why the United States had backed Zenki if its members are extremists. The issue was discussed at length with senior intelligence officials, and no good answers were forthcoming, according to people familiar with the conversations. After learning more worrisome details about the CIA’s ghost war in Syria—including that U.S.-backed rebels had often fought alongside extremists, among them al Qaeda’s arm in the country—the president decided to end the program altogether.

Screenshot of the horrific video of a CIA-backed Syrian group beheading a boy named Abdullah Issa.

At the time the beheading video surfaced (July 2016), many in the American public naturally wanted answers, but the story never really picked up much momentum in the media. As Joscelyn describes, it caused nothing more than "a minor stir in the press." The State Department seemed merely satisfied that the group responsible, Harakat Nour al-Din al-Zenki, claimed to have arrested the men that committed the gruesome crime, though nothing more was known. Absurdly, a US government spokesperson expressed hope that the child-beheading group would "comply with obligations under the law of armed conflict."

The only press agencies that publicly and consistently challenged the State Department at the time were RT News and the Associated Press, yet even these attempts didn't get picked up beyond the confines of the State Department's daily briefing. When the AP's Matt Lee initially questioned spokesman Mark Toner as to whether Zenki would continue to receive any level of US assistance, Toner casually replied "it would give us pause" - which left Lee taken aback.

Meanwhile, it wasn't just the US government which had aided Zenki, but as fighting in Aleppo raged it became a favored group among both the mainstream media and prominent think tank pundits. One of the UK's major broadcasters (Channel 4) even went so far as to attempt to delete and hide its prior online content which sought to normalize the beheaders as "moderate" and heroic once news of the video got out.

Among think tankers, Zenki's most prominent public supporter, frequently presenting the terror group as actually representative of Syria's "secular" and supposedly democracy-promoting armed opposition (even after the beheading video emerged), was Charles Lister. Lister was finally confronted not by mainstream media, but by AlterNet's Max Blumenthal at a DC event held by the (largely Gulf funded) Atlantic Council.

Only by the time of this January 2017 public forum, and after being persistently questioned, did Lister awkwardly back off his previous enthusiastic promotion of Zenki:

We can imagine that Trump saw other things beyond the shocking Zenki beheading video which made him fully realize the utter criminality of the CIA program (Thomas Joscelyn further emphasizes that Trump came to understand the full scope of CIA cooperation with al-Qaeda in Syria).

The only question that remains is who in the CIA or Obama-era State Department should be prosecuted first?

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hestroy's picture

You are a funny brainless retard.

buyingsterling's picture

The video caused little reaction in the press becase Obama was in the white house. Had someone Trump had funded done this, we would have heard about it incessantly.

williambanzai7's picture

Exactly, Barry please.

And notwithstanding all his imperfections, this is a perfect example of why Trump is infinitely better than the wicked witch of Chappaqua.

Paul Kersey's picture

Deep State doesn't call them child beheaders. Deep State calls them McCain moderate Muslim freedom fighters.

shovelhead's picture

"Islamic child beheadings are permitted as long as they are done within Halal guidelines."

~CIA Spokesman~

El Oregonian's picture

And in the end there were nothing but man-eating sub-humans left that populated our intelligence agencies. Please God, Raise up good God-fearing men and women in these services to discern the difference between right from wrong.

Is-Be's picture

You appeal to the same deity that these smirking monotheists worship.

I appeal to Kali Maa, O Great destroyer of illusions, to kill this parasite that controls your mind.

Kalashnikov545's picture

Wasn't he in IJ and the Temple of Doom? Didn't he rip the skinny guys heart out in the lava chamber?

Is-Be's picture

No. Kali Maa is the consort of Shiva. The two of them slaughtered cruel illusions.

She is the many armed dancing Goddess that adorn many Indian Hindu temples.

Oliver Klozoff's picture

Yep, I see many armed dancing goddesses all the time.

Is-Be's picture

The corpus callosum that joins the left brain to the right brain has been shrinking since the time of the Apes.

Its purpose is to shield the Gestaldt Right brain from the constant chatter of the model making left brain.

It is your right brain that understands metaphor, but it is your deeply delusional left brain that types your missive.

The fact that you cannot appreciate the metaphor indicates that you would benefit from many doses of DMT.

It would be in your interest to gain access to the contents of your Right brain in which wisdom resides.

Oliver Klozoff's picture

Many, many armed goddesses. They're dancing too.

UmbilicalMosqueSweeper's picture

Hansel and Gretel were stuffed in the oven by the evil witch, while billy goat gruff was trouncing the troll who hated Jack and his beanstalk. But Rumpelstiltskin met his due for talking to himself.

Maximeme Q's picture

Somebody open a window and let some of this banality out of here.

Dancing Disraeli's picture

If El Oregonian is a Christian, they do NOT worship the same deity.

Educate yourself just a little.  Pick up a New Testament and a Koran.

booboo's picture

Can you point to any illusions destroyed? if so she sucks as a god since an illusion destroyed is an illusion forgotten and if you can still recall it, it's not destroyed.

tmosley's picture

>Implying the moon goddess Allah is the same as the evil god Moloch and the good but fully cucked god Yahweh (who literally sacrificed his only begotten son to Moloch to stop his evil influence among the Jews--IN VAIN).

chubbar's picture

In addition, the US started the civil war in Ukraine and is now considering arming them. The US invaded Libya, supports the starvation of thousands of Yemenis and the wholesale killing of women and children both there and in Syria.

I just don't know why the american people haven't marched on both the pentagon and the congress, yanked everyone of those assholes out of their fucking cubby holes and hanged them? These motherfuckers have broken just about every rule and moral code known to mankind and yet the american people sit like dumbasses in front of their TV sets. It's just incredible the karmic blowback coming our way because of this shit.

Chupacabra-322's picture

The "Policy" of arming, funding & training Alqueda / Al CIA duh / ISIS /?I CIA SIS goes back to the days of the Mujahadeen.

There are profits in Treasonous Pure Evil War Crimes. That pipeline is the Profit Motive as well as continued Criminal US Hedgemony of Vassal States & survival of the Ponzi Criminal US Petroleum Dollar.

bowie28's picture

And don't forget the opium crop in Afghanistan.  How much $ is that generating to fund CIA black ops and fill up the offshore bank accounts of all the associated deep state criminals?

I have my doubts about Trump but when he does something like this it does give some hope.  When he gave the press conference and said "No more funding terrorists" he was sending a very clear message.  And when he talks about stopping drugs from coming in to US he has to know who he is threatening.  Will be interesting to see how far he goes on that one.


Chupacabra-322's picture

Those funds are used & laundered to prop up the balance sheets of insolvent TBTF Tax Payer Bailed out Banksters.

See Wells Fargo formerly Wachovia & others.

The Global Criminal Oligarch Cabal Bankster Intelligence Crime Syndicate.

UmbilicalMosqueSweeper's picture

Those funds are also used to fill the pockets of oligarch war criminals, and to bribe politicians, jurists, and their enforcers, then fill the MIC black ops bank accounts. Wall Steet and the banks would collapse if it were not for laundered drug money.

Mustafa Kemal's picture

"The "Policy" of arming, funding & training Alqueda / Al CIA duh / ISIS /?I CIA SIS goes back to the days of the Mujahadeen."

this was inherited from the Nazis after WWII.

Read A Mosque in Munich

General Titus's picture

True, and the next phase of the plans was to bring their Al-CIA-Duh created Mujhadeens from Afghanistan to Bosnia, so they could splinter further Yugoslavia and slaughter secular muslims and Orthodox Christian Serbs

mc888's picture

I just don't know why the american people haven't marched on both the pentagon and the congress

One word: Gaslighting.


Chupacabra-322's picture

@ mc888,

A heavy dose of Gaslighting mixed in with:

Predictive Programming

The theory proposes that public media (such as films, television, news casts, etc.) are deliberately seeded with subtle clues to future social, political, or technological changes. According to the theory, when the relevant change is later introduced into the world, the public has become used to the idea through exposure, and therefore passively accepts it rather than offering resistance or opposition. Predictive programming is therefore thought to be a means of propaganda or mass psychological conditioning that operates on a subliminal or implicit level.

bowie28's picture

Gaslighting and predictive programming indeed.  And look how effective it is:

Just a few years ago if you said the CIA was arming and funding ISIS and their ilk in Syria you were mocked as a "conspiracy theorist".  Now it is confirmed and reported in MSM and no one blinks an eye as if it was common knowledge all along. 

mc888's picture

I'll see your Predictive Programming and raise you a Conditioned Emotional Response.

scaleindependent's picture

Another example of Predictive Programming is all the subtle, and now, not so subtle references to banning cash and setting up a digital cashless society.

not dead yet's picture

When those dumbasses sit in front of their TV's, read the paper, or any of the news magazines they are fed bullshit that toes the government line. Compared to the mainstream media ZeroHedge and other alternative sites that print the truth have little sway with the general public as they have been programmed that anything but mainstream is fake news in the pay of the Russians. We've all been propagandized from the day we were born. So don't blame the dumbasses or the "good people" for doing nothing. Hillary was the deep state candidate with an enormous load of negative baggage yet 96% of the media endorsed her and wrote of her in only glowing terms.

In the 1950's President Eisenhower had a personal envoy at the CIA that worked for and reported directly to him. Yet the president still had no idea of the majority of what the CIA was up to. Fast forward to today where the CIA is far more sophistcated and has tentacles everywhere, including inside the US where it is illegal for them to operate, and no one outside the top echeleon of the CIA really knows what they are up and never will. Not even the head man appointed by the president knows. A government unto themselves. If anyone thinks Trump or any other president can shut down a CIA program needs to smoke better dope. On the surface the program will be gone but it will still be there.

The military may not like the CIA but if their objectives are the same they will stay out of each others way. Like destroying Syria or any other country that gets in the way of USA world domination. A general that says he prepares for war and prays for peace is a lying POS. He prepares for war and hopes there is one.

yaright's picture

They sit back and do nothing because most will never see a story like this, they have not been trained to think critically to question everything.  They are fat, lazy and poorly educated even with college.  I see them every day hell I employee a lot of them.


We are way over the tripping point no turning back now hang on its going to be one hell of a karma fuck!

Mr Twitch's picture

Yes, USA does that but what is the motivation?  Seems it is always someone elses motivation.

Sanity Bear's picture

And perhaps not so coincidentally, a CNN "reporter" ate human brain on live TV.

Freddie's picture

These monsters in the CIA, State Dept, Bsuhes, Clintons, Obama, McCain, Soros and the rest should be arrested for war crimes and genocide.  Include Jared Kushner-Soros friends of Bibi and Soros.

holgerdanske's picture

The problem is the judicial system does not work with the rich and famous.

The prosecution of the psychopathic killer Blair in the UK for the war effort in Iraq has just been blocked by the supreme court.

If you want fairness, do the job yourself, because the system is in place to perpetuate the status quo and can thus not be relied upon to do anything else than to keep you in check, or preferably get you a bit further down the ladder.

International citizens should form groups to bring such people to justice, when institutionalized justice is denied us.

General Titus's picture

Secular Syria was one of the 7 nations that were to be destroyed for the updated Yinon Plan to benefit the anti-Torah state of Israel. Thats why Israel has been illegally attacking Hezbollah & the Syrian military, because they are attacking & destroying their Al-CIA-DUh & ISIS Golems

Mr Twitch's picture

Organs are only handed out as a reward  to the most infamous head-chopper video stars.

The rest of the organs are harvested and whisked off to market.

Mr Twitch's picture

There's big money in them thar organs!

giorgioorwell's picture

But we're fine with the Saudi's funding the exact same kind of heathens?  

gregga777's picture

The KSA (Kingdom of Saudi Arabia) ARE exactly the same kind of heathens.

Is-Be's picture

Fuck off, lying monotheist.

Clarification: These are smiling monotheists that committed this act. They are self avowed monotheists, not Heathens.

They would decapitate you if you called them Heathens.

scaleindependent's picture

The Carthaginians were your religion and they sacrificed their kids to their god

mc888's picture

Carthage was pretty fuckin far from Scandinavia. Don't you recognize Mjolnir when you see it?

samsara's picture

But they only do it to women who have sex out of wedlock , or caught driving.


Is-Be's picture


One who worships in the heath? A Pagan?

On the contrary Sir. These are most defiantly monotheists.

They are on your team, not ours.

Moe Hamhead's picture

There is no one or nothing worse than the Godless.