Saudi Arabia Is Arming Syrian “Opposition” As Twin Car Bombs Kill 27 In Damascus by Finian Cunningham

by Finian Cunningham
Featured Writer
Dandelion Salad
East Africa
17 March 2012

Within hours of a twin car-bomb attack in the Syrian capital that left at least 27 dead and 100 injured, a senior Arab diplomatic source has confirmed that Saudi Arabia is arming anti-government factions.

It has been long suspected that Saudi Arabia and other pro-Western Gulf Arab states, including Qatar, are actively fuelling the conflict in Syria over the past year. Both Saudi Arabia and Qatar have recently declared their willingness to send arms to groups opposed to the rule of Syrian President Bashar Al Assad.

Now it would appear that such rhetorical willingness is actual practice. And the disclosure of direct foreign Arab involvement in the armed conflict comes on the same day as one of the worst single atrocities in Syria in the past 12 months.

The explosions were carried out with devastating precision outside police and military intelligence headquarters in the capital, Damascus, in the early hours, Saturday. The devices comprised two vehicles packed with explosives, according to Syrian state media reports. Local residents described how the bombs were detonated within minutes of each other, causing horrific scenes of carnage.

Many ordinary Syrians are convinced that the latest atrocity – as with previous deadly blasts in the capital and other cities across the country – is the work of terrorist groups that are being trained and supplied by foreign states in a bid to destabilize the government of Bashar Al Assad.

Certainly, the lethal attack appears to be well beyond the capability of “rag-tag rebels”, as the so-called anti-government opposition is often portrayed in the Western mainstream media. Its sophisticated execution suggests the involvement of special forces. The presence of British, French, Saudi and Qatari special forces involved in training and directing Syrian oppositionists in has been reported previously by Global Research and other alternative media. But the mainstream media appear blind to the earth-shattering implications of such a connection.

Last week, the Syrian information minister Adnan Mahmoud bluntly accused Saudi Arabia and Qatar of “armed terrorist gangs” operating in his country.

“Some of the countries backing armed terrorist gangs, such as Saudi Arabia and Qatar, are accomplices to the terrorism targeting the Syrian people… and bear responsibility for the bloodletting,” he said.

The claim by the Syrian government appears to be well-founded after the news agency AFP quoted a senior Arab diplomat confirming that Saudi Arabia is delivering military equipment to Syrian “rebels”.

“Saudi military equipment is on its way to Jordan to arm the [opposition] Free Syrian Army,” the diplomat told AFP on condition of anonymity.

Large pro-government rallies during the week indicate that the Al Assad administration maintains widespread popular support. President Al Assad has been accused by Western governments and their Arab allies of leading a brutal crackdown against the Syrian civilian population. And these powers have called on Al Assad to stand down in what smacks of as a self-serving, cynical agenda for “regime change” against a geopolitically inconvenient foe.

Sunni monarchies Saudi Arabia and Qatar have emerged as the most vocal enemies of the Iranian-allied Al Assad government. The Gulf states were key players in promoting the UN Security Council sanction against Syria that would have seen Al Assad ejected from power. The UNSC bid was vetoed by Russia and China, both of which held the view that the situation in Syria is not one of state repression – as Western governments, media and Gulf Arab states allege, but rather is more one of state forces trying to resist an armed insurrection that has murky overtones of foreign subversion.

The scenario maintained by the Syrian government and shared by its people, along with Russia and China among others, appears more credible with each passing day.

United Nations’ figures claim that more than 8,000 people have been killed since conflict erupted in the country one year ago.

Credible reports say over half of the total deaths have come from Syrian state forces. That corroborates various sources indicating that supposed Syrian opposition groups are well armed and trained. Indeed the main opposition faction, the self-styled Syrian Free Army, has claimed that it has received weapons from the US, Britain and France.

Syrian government forces have intercepted sophisticated weapons shipments, including anti-tank rockets, originating from Israel. And it is believed that NATO member Turkey is also supplying arms into Syria.

Yet in spite of the mounting evidence of foreign subversion and terrorism in Syria, the Western mainstream media continue to depict the country as a cause for “humanitarian intervention” by NATO forces in what would be a reprise of their involvement in Libya. The latter was purported to be based on a “responsibility to protect” civilians lives. But it has since been shown to be a squalid neocolonial affair of “responsibility to protect” oil interests. With such war criminals and Arab dictators lining up again in Syria, we can be sure that the agenda has nothing to do with protecting civilians.

The latest atrocity in Damascus indicates the depths of depravity to which these powers are capable of descending in order to play their geopolitical game.

Finian Cunningham, is Global Research’s Middle East and East Africa correspondent and a Featured Writer on Dandelion Salad. He can be reached at


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