[UPDATE 4/17/17: Republican Congressman Thomas Massie also broke ranks in dramatic fashion from the major media narrative that Assad has gassed his own people. Appearing on CNN with anchor Kate Bolduan, Massie visibly rattled Bolduan when he said: "Frankly I don't think Assad would have done that, it does not serve his interest it does tend to draw us into that civil war even further." And today, MIT professor and "rocket scientist" Ted Postol released a report which concluded that Assad could not have been behind the latest chemical weapons attack in Syria.]
Saying that there is "zero chance" that Syrian President Bashar Assad was behind the deadly gas attack which triggered a US cruise missile barrage ordered by President Donald Trump last Thursday, Ron Paul, in an interview, called the gas attack likely a false flag commissioned by hawkish elements within the US government, who have been trying to "remake the map" of the Middle East since the Iraq invasion.
Paul said it makes "no sense" that Assad would attack civilians with poison gas just as he was benefitting from a successful peace process, with Donald Trump recently saying that the fate of Syria should be left up to the Syrian people.
“Before this episode of possible gas exposure and who did what, things were going along reasonably well...Trump said let the Syrians decide who should run their country, and peace talks were making out, and Al Qaeda and ISIS were on the run or maybe defeated.”
“It looks like, maybe, somebody didn’t like that so there had to be an episode," Paul said. In January Paul warned of such "episodes" as a tool of the US foreign policy establishment to draw the US into wars. Paul said: “All we need is a false flag and an accident and everybody will be for teaching them a lesson.”
Paul said on his show The Liberty Report on Wednesday:
"It's the Neoconservatives who have benefitted from this tremendously, because it has derailed the progress that has been made toward a more peaceful settlement in Syria."
"Neoconservatives" is a term used loosely to refer to more hawkish elements in the Pentagon and US foreign policy establishment, who remain in power in influential and advisory positions long after the original architects of the Iraq invasion have left government.
At the same time, weighing in from the left, Democratic Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard refused to go along with the narrative being pressed upon her by Wolf Blitzer in an interview on CNN. Gabbard said she was "skeptical" that Assad was behind the attack. As Blitzer questioned Gabbard he said:
“Congresswoman, you are saying when the secretary of defense and national security adviser come to the president and they say...we now know for sure that the Syrian regime did this, here are the various options to respond and he gives the okay and you say you have doubts about these generals providing that kind of truth to the president?”
Gabbard replied with a reference to Iraq, saying:
“Wolf, I remind you of what happened before we launched in Iraq. They claimed they have the evidence proving that Saddam has weapon of destruction, years later proven to be wrong. We had leaders in Congress who questioned that evidence that was presented and voted against that war because they were not convinced by the administration then saying they have the proof necessary to launch this war. Yes, I am skeptical."
Gabbard followed up by saying:
"we don’t have money to build roads that we need here in Hawaii or other parts of the country. Why should we just blindly follow this escalation...and sending American taxpayers’ dollars that we have seen in Iraq and Libya and now continuing in Syria.”
Pressed hard by Blitzer, and asked if she would change her mind if the Pentagon could present her with hard evidence that Assad was behind the chemical attack, Gabbard again showed her disdain for the truthfulness of the Pentagon's upper echelons by replying: "No."
Gabbard serves on the House on the Armed Services and Foreign Affairs committees. She has deployed to Iraq twice and holds the rank of major in the US Army. At 21 she became the youngest person ever elected to state office in the nation, as a state representative in Hawaii.
In a remarkably candid assessment, Ron Paul said that hawkish elements in the government, some of whom advise Donald Trump, are able to use "their propaganda machine" in the US media to incessantly beat the drums for war. Paul said of the "Deep State":
"They do have to get some type of public support for the war although they're behind the scenes, the Neocons, and the Deep State...they still know that they have to use their propaganda machine to get people behind them, and I think that's what's going on, they did it in Iraq successfully."
Paul said these hawkish elements, who work mostly "behind the scenes," were responsible for "regime change" in Iraq, Libya, Ukraine, and now are attempting the same in Syria.
Groups linked to Syrian rebels have been accused of being behind the murder of children as part of the staging of gas attacks to be blamed on the Assad government. At the center of these is the White Helmets, a "civil defense" organization openly funded by the UK government and USAID. In October of 2016 British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said:
"I’m proud to say we’re giving them I think [US$39.78 million] funding as part of a wider £65 million package for a non-humanitarian aid,”
The White Helmets were once forced to apologize for staging at least one rescue for the cameras in what they called "The Mannequin Challenge."
Now, an international human rights organization, Swedish Doctors for Human Rights, led by Dr. Marcello Vittorio Ferrada de Noli, a former Research Fellow at Harvard Medical School, says that videos released by the White Helmets of alleged gas attack victims being treated, mostly young children, are more likely propaganda videos in which healthy children may be killed in the process. The doctors note that in one video, a syringe of what is supposed to be adrenaline shows that the syringe is never pumped, and that a young child appears to be suffering from an opiate overdose.
RT has broadcast footage of what seem to be White Helmets celebrating with al-Nusra and ISIS fighters, brandishing rifles and al-Nusra flags.
President Assad has vehemently denied perpetrating the gas attacks. After the 2013 gas attacks in Syria which were also blamed on Assad, former Chief Prosecutor of the United Nations international criminal law tribunal, Carla Del Ponte, said the attacks were most likely committed by Syrian rebels in order to turn the international community against Assad.
In a statement after the US cruise missile attack on Syrian targets Congresswoman Gabbard issued a statement which warned of the dangers of escalation. The statement said:
“This escalation is short-sighted and will lead to more dead civilians, more refugees, the strengthening of al-Qaeda and other terrorists, and a possible nuclear war between the United States and Russia.”
Bruce Rauner on April 29, 2017:
Tusli is a DISGRACE to the entire nation - sick ignorant pandering to stupid scared liberals, meanwhile Assad prepares the next Firebombing or VS Nerve Agent attack.
She is sick to believe the madman Assad over the US government.
Ashutosh Joshi from New Delhi, India on April 09, 2017:
Propaganda machinery in full swing. They want to have their way somehow or the other. Could have raised the White Helmet budget to shoot better HD propaganda vidoes. Those lives lost in the missile attack, why aren't they accounted for, they weren't ISIS! High time, someone checks this global policing.