Introduction — August 28, 2016
The following report on events in a “rebel controlled” district in Aleppo is propaganda, not news. Readers will note that the story is headed by a photo of a crying child, no doubt intended to appeal to readers emotions.
That emotional pitch is probably meant to obscure the fact that the information that follows comes from highly suspect sources. The Independent cites “Footage posted by activists online” as evidence that some sort of atrocity has been committed by “forces loyal to Bashar al-Assad”.
The video cited by the Independent reportedly shows images of:
“A dead body on an abandoned stretcher could be seen next to a partially crushed ambulance…
“a partially crushed ambulance, surrounded by rubble and scattered body parts.
and “A baby was visible among the bodies of the dead…”
All very graphic but followed by the words “The images could not be independently verified”. In other words the footage could be entirely fake. The Independent wasn’t able to say with certainty.
In the past stories that presented the actions of the Syrian government and their Russian allies in a negative light invariably came from the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. A one man operation run by a Syrian expatriate from a small house in Coventry, England, the Observatory was discredited amid suspicions that it was linked to Western intelligence.
Instead. this report has been supplied by the “pro-rebel Aleppo Media Centre” but given its content and tone it could easily be fulfilling a similar role as the Observatory. Yet this highly suspect report is on the front page (online) of today’s Independent. Proof, if any were needed, that the corporate media is being used to shape the way the Western public sees events in Syria.
The report is obviously intended to stir outrage and anger against President Assad, who is allegedly bombing funerals held for children, no less.
So one can’t help wondering if this report and others like it aren’t being used to prepare the public for possible direct Western military intervention in Syria?
Syrian war: At least 15 civilians killed as barrel bombs hit funeral for children killed in air strikes in Aleppo
Lizzie Dearden — The Independent August 27, 2016
At least 15 civilians have reportedly been killed by a suspected barrel bomb attack on a funeral being held in the Syrian city of Aleppo.
Residents had gathered in the rebel-controlled Bab al-Nayrab district to mourn 11 children who died in air strikes two days before on Saturday when the explosions struck.
Mohammed Khandakani, a hospital volunteer, said one of the injured victims told him two barrel bombs were dropped within minutes, injuring an ambulance driver responding to the first attack and hampering rescue efforts.
Footage posted by activists online showed relatives screaming as victims were carried into a side street in body bags, leaving trails of blood on the floor.
A dead body on an abandoned stretcher could be seen next to a partially crushed ambulance, surrounded by rubble and scattered body parts.
A baby was visible among the bodies of the dead as children covered in dust were pulled from the ruins. The images could not be independently verified.
The Syrian Network group put the death toll from Saturday’s attacks at 11 but the pro-rebel Aleppo Media Centre said more than 20 people died.
Helicopters flown by forces loyal to Bashar al-Assad were suspected of carrying out the attack, although officials have persistently denied using barrel bombs.
The cheap munitions see containers packed with explosives and shrapnel before being rolled out of helicopters and have were condemned for inflicting indiscriminate casualties in civilian areas by the UN Security Council.