Ceasefire in Southwest Syria
by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org – Home – Stephen Lendman)
Beginning Sunday, July 9, US/Russia agreed on ceasefire became effective in Daraa, Quneitra and Sweida – in part of the country’s southwest.
Earlier bilaterally agreed on cessation of hostilities were only observed by Syria, its allied ground forces and Russia. Given Washington’s rage for regime change, it’s hard imagining success this time, except perhaps short-term.
Historically, US commitments weren’t worth the paper they were written on. Sergey Lavrov saying “(t)he United States has made a commitment that all the groups present there will observe the ceasefire” may be wishful thinking – given how many times before Russian good faith efforts were betrayed, in Syria and elsewhere.
Areas covered by ceasefire terms will be monitored and enforced by Russian, US and Jordanian forces. They prohibit combat operations by all parties.
It’s hoped humanitarian aid can be delivered to thousands of beleaguered civilians. A monitoring center in Amman will oversea things.
From Hamburg, Putin said Washington’s position hasn’t “changed drastically” from Obama to Trump though it now seems “more pragmatic.”
It hasn’t been so far, whether ahead remains to be seen. With Trump hostage to dark forces running America, it’s hard imagining more accommodative US policies toward Russia, Syria and other sovereign independent countries.
Continuity seems far more likely. Another significant false flag CW attack could trigger US forces and terrorists they support breaching the new ceasefire.
At her latest weekly press briefing, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova warned about anti-Syrian terrorist groups “planning to stage provocations using poison gas in order to justify US strikes against the positions of Syrian government forces.”
“Most likely, these attacks will be carried out in a residential area that cannot be accessed by Syrian authorities, one of which is the opposition’s enclave in Eastern Ghouta where chemical weapons had earlier been delivered,” she explained.
“Jaysh al-Islam and Faylaq al-Rahman (terrorists) are known to have several rockets with chemical warheads in the towns of Ain Terma and Sabka. Each rocket weighs about 150 km.”
“Similar provocations cannot be ruled out in southern Syria where armed groups controlled by Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Israel are operating, and also in eastern Syria.”
“According to current reports, ISIS is redeploying workshops and ammunition-manufacturing equipment from Raqqa to areas of Deir ez-Zor province controlled by them.”
“This equipment can also be used to manufacture ammunition with chemical warheads. Chemical weapons components have been delivered to the city of Abu-Kamal on the border with Iraq. Several chemists are accompanying this consignment, and they are currently stockpiling toxic agents.”
US-led forces in northern Syria claimed to have ISIS fighters surrounded in Raqqa. Yet a corridor was conveniently left open for many of them to redeploy toward Deir Ezzor, taking weapons and heavy equipment with them.
Zakharova accused Washington of “aiding and abetting” them. Separately, Tillerson disturbingly said Russia “has a responsibility to ensure that the needs of the Syrian people are met and that no faction in Syria illegitimately re-takes or occupies areas liberated from ISIS or other terrorist groups’ control,” adding:
Moscow has “an obligation to prevent any further use of chemical weapons of any kind by the Assad regime.”
Pretty deplorable stuff by the chief diplomat of a nation responsible for naked aggression on Syria, including support for ISIS and other terrorist groups, along with their use of CWs against civilians and government forces.
No evidence shows Assad used them any time throughout over six years of war. Under international supervision, they were all destroyed.
In response to Tillerson’s comments, Putin in Hamburg expressed strong support for Syrian sovereignty over all its territory and right of its people to decide their leadership and future.
My newest book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”
Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.