French President Emmanuel Macron says he is prepared to "strike" Syria if evidence is found to support claims that President Bashar al-Assad used chemical weapons against civilians, though noted that French intelligence agencies do not have any such proof.
“On chemical weapons, I set a red line and I reaffirm that red line,” Macron told reporters in Paris on Tuesday. “Today, our agencies, our armed forces have not established that chemical weapons, as set out in treaties, have been used against the civilian population.”
“We have some indications of possible chlorine use [in Syria], but we have no absolute confirmation... So we, alongside the others, are working on trying to confirm this, as we clearly have to get the facts straight.” -French Defense Minister Florence Parly
Facilities used to store and "originate" chemical weapons shipments would be the primary targets, said the French President, who also told reporters that he warned Russian President Vladimir Putin of France's plans during a phone call last Friday.
“I've reiterated it to President Putin, asking to make it very clear to the Syrian regime, which has reaffirmed that it does not use chemical weapons … but we are watching it,” Macron stated.
Macron's announcement that French intelligence has found no proof of Assad gassing civilians stands in sharp contrast to an April 7, 2017 strike on a suspected sarin gas storage facility at Syria's Shayrat Airbase by the United States, in which President Trump sent 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles with an estimated value of $100 million (taxpayer dollars) in response to an alleged chemical attack which occurred 72 hours prior. Somehow U.S. intelligence was able to fully investigate the attack and determine its provenance - despite conflicting reports in the media over exactly where the attack took place, what type of gas was used, and the number of casualties.
Observant readers will recall that the President's deep state / NeoCon haters such as John McCain and Bill Kristol gave him a nod of approval after Trump disappointed the anti-war contingency of his base.
Punishing Assad for use of chemical weapons is good. Regime change in Iran is the prize.https://t.co/vnRo82CU4r— Bill Kristol (@BillKristol) April 8, 2017
After initial reports said that sarin gas was used, internet sleuths (along with anyone with more than a few brain cells) noted that "white helmets" were cleaning up bodies without wearing protective safety gear - meaning that they would have been exposed to the Sarin as well. The type of gas used was then changed in official reports to a "sarin-like" compound.
You don't handle sarin-saturated bodies *without gloves* - unless you're a Syrian rebel trying to pull off yet another hoax. pic.twitter.com/1ozt68HkK1— Justin Raimondo (@JustinRaimondo) April 5, 2017
And as Disobedient Media reported on April 6, a day before the Tomahawk attack, there were several conflicting reports emerging from the April 4 gas attack which should have given President Trump pause to perhaps hold off on his $100 million fireworks display while enjoying "beautiful" chocolate cake with China's Xi Jinping as the bombs were dropping.
For starters, an anti-Assad reporter on the ground in Syria tweeted that the next day he would be launching a media campaign to cover the airstrikes on the Hama countryside, including the use of chemical weapons he couldn't have known were about to be deployed.
Second, observers noted that three days before the attack, a doctor on the ground in Khan Sheikhoun, Dr. Shajul Isklam, received several shipments of gas masks right before the incident.
Also noted was the lack of protective safety gear by those cleaning up the bodies.
Lastly, Moscow claimed at the time of the April 4th attack that Syrian air strikes on the region were intended on destroying chemical arms labs run by anti-Assad forces:
"According to Russian airspace monitoring systems, yesterday between 11.30 and 12.30 local time the Syrian aviation carried out an airstrike on the eastern outskirts of Khan Sheikhun, targeting a major ammunition storage facility of terrorists and a cluster of military hardware. The territory of this storage facility housed workshops to produce projectiles stuffed with toxic agents," Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said. (Tass)
France's refusal to engage in Syria until their intelligence agencies have proof comes on the heels of the latest reported chemical attack in Syria last month - conveyed by controversial sources including the anti-Assad White Helmets NGO and the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR).
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was quick to blame the Syrian government at an international conference held on January 23 in Paris for the "International Partnership against Impunity for the Use of Chemical Weapons," where Tillerson even blamed Moscow for the alleged January attack despite a lack of evidence. Moscow, in turn, criticized the conference as an attempt to subvert the UN's Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.
According to Russia's Center for Reconciliation in Syria, a source has claimed that the Al-Nusra terrorist group has brought some 20 chlorine canisters into Syria, while the White Helmets have been staging "first aid" drills with "local residents" suffering from poisoning - which some suspect is in preparation for a staged chemical incident which will be used to justify regime change.
If you'd like to hear more about these questionable sources while also watching a Canadian journalist shut down a smug MSM reporter at the UN, watch here: