Trump Cuts Off Funding For Syria's "White Helmets"

The Trump State Department has frozen funding to the controversial Syrian aid group known as the White Hemlets, a non-governmental organization (NGO) which provided the sole evidence that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad reportedly used chemical weapons on his own people in an April 7 attack on the city of Douma, according to CBS News.

Having not received U.S. funding in recent weeks, White Helmets are questioning what this means for the future. They have received no formal declaration from the U.S. government that the monetary assistance has come to a full halt, but the group's people on the ground in Syria report that their funds have been cut off. -CBS News

The evidence provided by the White Helmets of the alleged chemical attack was used by the West to justify several airstrikes on Syrian scientific and military facilities throughout April - the first one conducted on Syria's T4 airbase by Israel 48 hours after the White Helmets' report. Many Douma residents, meanwhile - including Hospital personnel, say the chemical attack never happened.

The White Helmets are a 3,000 member NGO formally known as the Syrian Civil Defense. Established in "late 2012 - early 2013" after a group of 20 Syrians were trained and organized by former British army officer James Le Mesurier. The group then received funding from Le Mesurier's Netherlands-based non-profit group, Mayday Rescue - which is in turn funded by grants from the Dutch, British, Danish and German governments

The US has provided at least $32 million to the group - around 1/3 of their total funding - through a USAID scheme orchestrated by the Obama State Department and funneled to the White Helmets using a Washington D.C. contractor participating in USAID's Syria regional program, Chemonics. 

According to their website, the White Helmets have been directly funded by Mayday Rescue, and a company called Chemonics, since 2014.

Yet there’s evidence that both of those organizations started supporting the White Helmets back in early 2013, right around the time the White Helmets claim to have formed as self-organized groups.

Mayday Rescue, as we said, is funded by the Dutch, British, Danish and German governments. And Chemonics?

They are a Washington, D.C. based contractor that was awarded $128.5 million in January 2013 to support “a peaceful transition to a democratic and stable Syria” as part of USAID’s Syria regional program. At least $32 million has been given directly to the White Helmets as of February 2018. -TruthInMedia

So the US, Dutch, British, Danish and German governments have been funding the White Helmets, a non-governmental organization, through proxies for around five years.

Shut It Down

Perhaps fueled by troubling reports that the White Helmets have been accused of staging incidents, the Trump administration has now frozen funding to the group, and has placed support under "active review." 

Now they are not getting any U.S funding as the State Department says the support is "under active review." The U.S had accounted for about a third of the group's overall funding.

An internal State Department document said that its Near East Bureau needed confirmation from the administration to green light funding for the White Helmets in Syria by April 15th or the department would initiate "shut-down procedures on a rolling basis." -CBS News

"This is a very worrisome development," an official with the White Helmets told CBS. "Ultimately, this will negatively impact the humanitarian workers ability to save lives."

Or not, depending on how one feels about the White Helmets... 

Questions over authenticity

Last week, Russian officials brought fifteen people to The Hague from the city of Douma, Syria said to have been present during the alleged April 7 chemical attack, including 11-year-old Hassan Diab who was seen in a widely-distributed White Helmets video receiving "emergency treatment" in a local hospital after the alleged incident. 

“We were at the basement and we heard people shouting that we needed to go to a hospital. We went through a tunnel. At the hospital they started pouring cold water on me,” said Diab, who was featured in the video which Russia's ambassador to the Netherlands says was staged.

The boy and his family have spoken to various media outlets, who say there was no attack

Others present during the filming of Diab's hospital "cleanup" by the White Helmets include hospital administrator Ahmad Kashoi, who runs the emergency ward. 

There were people unknown to us who were filming the emergency care, they were filming the chaos taking place inside, and were filming people being doused with water. The instruments they used to douse them with water were originally used to clean the floors actually,” Ahmad Kashoi, an administrator of the emergency ward, recalled. “That happened for about an hour, we provided help to them and sent them home. No one has died. No one suffered from chemical exposure.” -RT

Also speaking at The Hague was Halil al-Jaish, an emergency worker who treated people at the Douma hospital the day of the attack - who said that while some patients did come in for respiratory problems, they were attributed to heavy dust, present in the air after recent airstrikes, but that nobody showed signs of chemical warfare poisoning.

The White Helmets have previously come under fire for allegations of fabricating evidence and staging bodies. Several of their members have been pictured with, or bear an uncanny resemblance to fighters from the various anti-Assad terrorist groups operating in the region.

Photographic and video evidence gathered over social media and elsewhere depicting White Helmets who appear to be affiliated with terrorist groups can be found here.

And Donald Trump just yanked 1/3 of their funding... 

 

Tags

Comments

macholatte El Oregonian Fri, 05/04/2018 - 12:40 Permalink

The White Hemlets, a non-governmental organization (NGO) which gets government money. Nice trick. I need to start one of those. Is it anything like a non-profit that pays the officers 7 figure salaries plus an expense account?

Soros has infected USAID and it needs to have its funding cut off and be subjected to a full audit. How much US tax payer money is going to Soros organizations?

Corruption!
It’s what’s for breakfast.
- Barack Soros

 

In reply to by El Oregonian

Klassenfeind StackShinyStuff Fri, 05/04/2018 - 13:28 Permalink

Another one of those patented Trump flip-flops!

The guy is completely nuts, irrational, clueless and a danger to the entire world! Another flip-flop in 3...2...1...

I wonder whether his 'advisers' (read: minders) like Bolton, Mattis, Haspel and Netanyahu will approve? Or has the White Helmet's credibility been shot to pieces, and does he now wire the money directly to Al Qaeda/Al Nursa or any of the other religious nutcases that can further the neo-con regime change agenda of Bibi and Trump's Deep State 'advisers?'

As always, follow the money: so in which religious nutcase's pockets does the money now end up?

In reply to by StackShinyStuff

Give Me Some Truth Klassenfeind Fri, 05/04/2018 - 14:01 Permalink

I’d be very surprised if their funding really will be cutoff. Wouldn’t that be an admission that they are not credible and thus worthy of receiving these large sums of money? And would not this be an admission that their “Assad gassed his people” (manufactured) meme was also a lie? A lie with massive implications. You think any neocons in Washington will ever admit such a thing,  or let such a conclusion gain currency? 

Not going to happen.

In reply to by Klassenfeind

techpriest Give Me Some Truth Fri, 05/04/2018 - 14:20 Permalink

Two things:

1) The article said that the US is putting up 1/3rd of the money. No word on whether the actors behind the other 2/3rd are going to follow in suit. Given how tortuous the funding path is, it may also just twist in a new direction.

2) On another thread, a poster had mentioned how it took years to debunk the myth about the Iraqi army pulling babies from incubators, but the debunking of this chemical attack started within minutes. Fingers crossed that the open source debunking has proven so effective that it is impossible to keep backing the myth.

In reply to by Give Me Some Truth

MK ULTRA Alpha techpriest Fri, 05/04/2018 - 15:02 Permalink

The real amount was closer to $400 million. This amount includes the amount allocated for future operations.(already allocated, can we get out money back by freezing it? future allocations will be shut down)

It's a smart move to cut all funding for the white helmets and all the other groups assisting the program to remove Assad.

The only reason some of the pockets in the cities were viable was because of resupply from groups trying to keep the civil war going for the political agenda of removing Assad. This has caused the death of over 500,000 Syrian Christians out of a prewar population of 2 million.

The end of US funding means an end to resupply of terrorist groups who have a front name to play this game of Assad removal to place a militant Sunni Muslim in power and the continuation of the slaughter of Syrian Christians.

So this is a great decision of which means Trump and company are learning more everyday of how and what the US government has been up to.

We can only hope this means a deescalation in the war in Syria and no more wars for Israel. But since the Green Beret are now in Yemen, we don't know what to expect in the new war against Iran and it's proxies.

All of this, from Libya to the Ukraine costs us money we do not have.

 

In reply to by techpriest

veritas semper… Robert of Ottawa Fri, 05/04/2018 - 16:46 Permalink

Really? Why didn't he cut all their funds immediately and not after their false flag was proven to be one by the Russians with the 17 witnesses at Hague? The OPCW report is ready to come to light.

It would have been more credible for him if this cutting of funds was done before this last false flag ; remember the last year false flag done by the White Helmets and the bombing of Syria based on that lie?

Selective memory is a Trumptard quality it seems.

As Maria Zakharova said : What's wrong? The US did not like the last film ?

It seems that the quality of the lies is too poor for continuing funding ; US need better actors for hiring. It does not have enough money to waist nowadays on bad actors that nobody believes.

Taking action to stop the wrong you did  after you were caught with your pants down , does not mean you are repenting ,only that you might prepare for a better f*ck up.

BTW ,there are reports that they prepare a new FF in Deir Ezzor.

In reply to by Robert of Ottawa

veritas semper… veritas semper… Fri, 05/04/2018 - 17:09 Permalink

  Have you seen the last performance of Heather Nauert , at State Department ? ( Remember I propose to nominate her and Sarah Sanders as the fungus growth on the RIGHT LEG of the American Empire ,together with Michelle Wolf ,on the LEFT LEG? for which I was down voted as if this is not true).

  Heather Nauert was asked about the Israhelli performance in Gaza/Palestine; their killings are : 47 dead Palestinians to ZERO dead Israhelli + > 2000 wounded to ZERO Israhelli wounded.

  And she said that she did not have information about this and in any case Israhell has the right to defend itself . Because the score of 47-O and >2000-O clearly shows  defence from Israhell 's part .

  Any other questions?

In reply to by veritas semper…

TheReplacement macholatte Fri, 05/04/2018 - 13:36 Permalink

OT - (((Someone))) in NJ doesn't like being reminded of (((ancestors'))) crimes in Poland.  Of course if you are Polish and you object then you must be antisemitic.

http://www.nj.com/hudson/index.ssf/2018/04/critics_slam_plan_to_move_st…

The Mayor - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steven_Fulop

It is just beyond stunning how there is always one of (((them))) involved.

In reply to by macholatte

ClassicalLib17 Bitchface-KILLAH Fri, 05/04/2018 - 13:07 Permalink

PDJT must have been watching One America News Network's "White Helmets" documentary with Pearson Sharp. I started watching them back in late 2015. When they started they aired without any commercial endorsements to avoid advertiser pressure that may object to their content. Now they've picked up a few advertisers to help pay the bills including one aired yesterday from Henry Repeating Rifle Company. Good on them for not being PC!

In reply to by Bitchface-KILLAH

FurgetStHEkatZ Number 9 Fri, 05/04/2018 - 13:00 Permalink

They receive 2/3 of their funding from MAYDAY Rescue Fund:

Funding for Maydays programmes comes from generous grants from the Governments of:

United Kingdom – Conflict Security and Stability Fund.

Kingdom of Denmark – Ministry of Foreign Affairs


Kingdom of The Netherlands – Ministry of Foreign Affairs


Germany – Ministry of Foreign Affairs


And

Chemtronics. Which is based in ARLINGTON, VIRGINIA!

It's just not gonna matter as they will receive funding one way or another!

In reply to by Number 9