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Despite the diplomatic progress, Israel remains at the forefront as a major force pushing for war Printer friendly page Print This
By James Petras. Radio Centenario and Axis of Logic
Axis of Logic
Wednesday, Sep 18, 2013

Editor's Note: The following article contains the transcript from Iribarne Ephraim Chury's weekly interview of James Petras, translated from Spanish into English by Axis of Logic. The interview can be heard and the transcript read at Uruguay's Radio Centenario in Spanish. In the interview, Petras provides new insight and clarity, not otherwise found in the fog of confusion and contraditory reports on Syria in the corporate and alternative media.

- Axis of Logic

On the possible attack on Syria, "We are in a place of transition ... with popular pressure and Putin's initiative weighed in on the side for a political and diplomatic solution and on the other side we have the warmongers in the US government, such as the Mr. Kerry, the Zionists and the rest of the hawks, who are looking for a pretext to neutralize this pro-diplomatic wave, pro-reconciliation and attempt to solve the problem without going into war," explained the American sociologist James Petras in his column for analysis of the international situation at CX36 Radio Centenario, Montevideo, Uruguay, CX36 (*). 

Petras also said that he has to wonder if "this idea of disarming Syria form a part of a trajectory toward the solution to stop the war, or is it a mechanism to weaken to Syria before attacking them ... Step into Iraq with inspectors and disarmament and then return to a more aggressive attack with fewer consequences."

What follows is the transcript of the analysis of James Petras from Monday 16 September 2013, which you can listen/download at Bits on the Run (20 minutes in Spanish).

James Petras

Iribarne Ephraim Chury: As each Monday at this time we receive James Petras from New York. Good day Petras, welcome.

James Petras: We are very well, trying to understand what is happening in different parts of the world.

ECHI: Well, as in the previous editions I would like to begin with Syria, given recent events.

JP: On Syria we have here in the United States a few formal presentations indicating that there are many possibilities to curb the diplomatic process for a peaceful resolution.

For example, the question of the inspectors going to check the Syrian chemical weapons is pending. The inspectors could be experts, but they can also have affiliations and policy guidelines that can harm any measure taken by the Syrian government. We have seen for example in Iraq, where some of the inspectors were actually spies for the United States and when they went to investigate the weapons, they also compiled information useful for the later American attack and bombardment. Instead of serving as a means of collecting information, they were investigators for the imperialism to facilitate the air strikes when launched.

Therefore, questions of how the inspection will take place and who the inspectors are will be critical.

Obviously, this means western countries are looking for inspectors who will act in favor of their agenda and not simply to resolve the problem, but rather to create the conditions for relaunching the military aggression. This seems to me clear.

The second are the obstacles that the Foreign Ministries of the United States and France are inserting; they want all the accounting of all the weapons in 60 places, in all the hidden locations, in a week. And they say that if they don't meet within a week, they will nullify the agreement.

Now, they could meet in 7, 8 or 9 days. But according to them, if they are not able to comply with in 7 days, everything indicates that the Syrian government is not fulfilling their obligation and this could launch the war. This seems to me to be very exaggerated, and is a pretext for a reason for to break the agreement.

ECHI: Do you think that Barack Obama remains committed to bomb Syria?

JP: Absolutely.

The agreement is something conjunctural, because it was a very unfavourable time politically for Washington. We must not forget that the public opinion and the American Congress have opposed the war; even some sectors with more warlike positions are opposed to the war. It was a very unfavorable time; not to mention the international situation, where they could not get the support they expected from the neighbors for a time to launch the attack. And even more, the question of who is going to benefit from the bombing, which was very questionable; for example the power of the Islamic extremists. These considerations were very unfavorable for the government.

Now, once the temperature drops, the Congress is no longer in session, the public will feel a relief because there will be no war, a time when the opposition to war has dropped and a time when we'd say that Washington will not have the same resistance against an attack.

Ake Sellstrom, head of the chemical weapons team working in Syria, provides report Ban Ki-moon at the UN (AP/Paulo Filgueiras)
To this day it is expected that the client of Washington, the United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, read the report of the UN inspectors on the use of chemical weapons in Syria. Everything indicates - as the Ban Ki-Moon has expressed - that poison gas was viewed as a product of the government, in spite of the fact that he never interviewed anyone in objective position, because the inspectors were simply there to collect samples and to speak only with the opponents of the Assad government. This inspection is very questionable because if they find that gas was used, they do not have any research on who used it. Therefore, they are going to make the inference, if they find gas was used, that it was used as a war policy by the the Syrian government and not as many say is true, including the Russians and other experts - that it was a product of the opposition. This is another point that we want to make.

John Kerry and Netanyahu discussing the fate of Syria
Thirdly, we have a problem in this process with US Secretary of State John Kerry saying that "the problem of Iran" remains central. Despite the fact that Iran has adopted very moderate positions and there was even correspondence between the presidents Hasan Rouhani and Barack Obama. 

Is this regard, there are sectors for more war in the United States who are still thinking of war in Syria as a threat to Iran.

In this whole framework, it should be noted that Israel is always at the forefront as a major force pushing the war, and as a result, the representatives of Israel in the US government - advisors, the Zionists (called experts), are still saying that the negotiations will fail and when that happens, the government should launch bombs without consulting Congress so as to avoid what happened recently.

Denis Ross and Netanyahu discussing war plans for Syria
Dennis Ross, who is one of Obama's main Zionist advisers with deep and extensive contacts with the government of Benjamin Netanyahu. announced that from now on there should be no further discussion due to Syria's noncompliance. He assumes the failure. He assumes that the government should bomb Syria without consulting the Congress and avoid any democratic consideration, simply get on with the mission which he says will secure Israel.

This is an example of what represents Zionism in Washington.

President Putin's proposal for peace through diplomacy was a blow for Washington Zionists.
They suffered a blow with the tactical decision to accept the proposal of Vladimir Putin; at the time - remember what we said last Monday - in which the Zionists had launched hundreds of officials to invade and lobby Congress. But it turns out that they received their first big blow, when the Congress rejected their pressures, which is something unusual in recent history, because 99% of the letters that arrived to the congressmen - which were hundreds of thousands - were against the war. How could they be subjected to the Zionists when nearly 100% of the voters were opposed to the war?

Even some Zionists were divided in Congress; some continue to support the war, but others, under the pressure of Putin's intervention and the citizenship had to say that they are not in complete conformity with the warlike policy.

We are in a place of transition, where popular pressure and Putin's initiative weighed on the side of a political and diplomatic solution and on the other side we have the warmongers in government, such as the Mr. Kerry, the Zionists and the rest of the hawks, who are looking for a pretext to neutralize this  pro-diplomatic wave, pro-reconciliation, pro-solutions without going into war.

But another argument the hawks are using is to increase and strengthen the transfer of weapons to terrorist groups, because they say: 'if you do not throw bombs at least you've got to support the opposition', i.e. the terrorists with better weapons.

So it seems that this is being considered now and again. Those who are looking for diplomatic solutions argue that they should not increase the shipment of arms, because that can affect the destruction of chemical weapons.

All this, put into a broader framework, raises the question: Does this idea of disarming Syria form a part of a trajectory toward the solution to stop the war, or is it a mechanism to weaken to Syria before attacking it.

So we are also considering this other hypothesis. That is, step into Iraq with  inspectors and disarmament and then return to a more aggressive attack with fewer consequences.

ECHI: I agree with this reasoning, it is a clear risk, because Obama's purpose is to liquidate Syria.

(L-R) David Cameron, Barack Obama and
Francois Hollande mapping war plans for Syria.

JP: There is another mechanism. Instead of acting directly, the United States used to third parties as in the case of Francois Hollande and David Cameron to use them when they find much resistance in the United States. It is easier for the French and English to funnel weapons to the terrorists than from the United States at this time where for many reasons, after so many wars, exhaustion and disenchantment makes things more complicated. Let us not forget that there are many people, even from left who think that Europe is more moderate and civilized, than the United States. They forget that the English and French killed millions of people in colonial countries; and continued in the post colonial period with interventions in Asia, Africa and even in Latin America, supporting terrorists in colonial wars.

They always go to Paris to the Louvre Museum or they go to London to see Buckingham Palace but a lot of people in Latin America forget that with the Magna Carta, the British Parliament was an obstacle to hunger and caused the death of more than 50 million Hindus, attacked China, destroyed the lives of African slaves, and much more, the wars in Indochina, in Kenya, Malaysia, and the post-war.

So it is hardly surprising that the so-called Socialist Labor Party in France and the Labour Party in England as well as the conservatives, are involved in this war by taking sides together with the United States.

ECHI: Finally, is there any other pending issue.

JP: The novelty that we must take into account are the great revelations of Edward Snowden of the cyber intervention by the United States, with spying on all decision-making of Presidents, of the main leaders in the Congresses and the main economic enterprises. It is the new type of colonialism and still the responses have been very hesitant. Only Brazil has acted with firmness; Argentina or Uruguay have responded regarding their sovereignty.

For this reason there must be a strong repudiation, a questioning of the relationships at all levels, because this is like military invasions in the past few years, when the United States sent marines to take control of the policy. Now it is the same thing with the use of the mechanisms of espionage.

If in the past a repudiation and the nearly a rupture of relationships was required against this type of intervention, the response, apart from President Rousseff, to this new type of colonialism is too weak n my opinion.

ECHI: Very well Petras. Thank you for this thorough analysis for Radio Centenary and we'll be getting together again next Monday.

JP: Well. I send a greeting to all the audience, in particular to the fishermen of spring in the Rambla de Montevideo

Translation from original transcript in Spanish by Axis of Logic.

Source: Uruguayan Radio Centenario  (audio & transcript in Spanish)

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