by Finian Cunningham
Writer, Dandelion Salad
Crossposted from PressTV
January 26, 2014
It’s a moot question why the Syrian government is even meeting members of the so-called opposition Syrian National Coalition?
Both parties met for the first time in a Geneva negotiating room at the weekend. It was the first such meeting in nearly three years of conflict in the Arab country, which has caused some 130,000 deaths and a third of the population to be displaced.
But neither the Syrian government delegation, led by deputy foreign minister Faisal Meqdad, nor the Syrian National Coalition (SNC) actually spoke to each other directly.
The bizarre meeting – continuing over the weekend – was chaired by United Nations/Arab League peace envoy, Lakhdar Brahimi. The Algerian diplomat reportedly conveyed statements between the opposing sides as they sat around the negotiating table.
The question is: why would the Syrian government of President Bashar al-Assad afford official recognition to the SNC – thus giving the latter an international status and, in effect, legitimizing the politics of the SNC? It doesn’t seem to make sense.
Faisal Meqdad put his finger on the issue going into the Geneva meeting when he referred to the opposition party as the “US delegation”.
For that is exactly what the SNC is: a manufactured political front created and sponsored by Washington and its NATO and regional allies.
The SNC is in Geneva not to negotiate for peace, but rather to do the political bidding of Washington for the agenda of regime change in Syria – an agenda it must be reiterated which is wholly illegal.
To refer to this grouplet as Syria’s “opposition” is an oxymoron. It has no political base within Syria, and its self-imposed exiled members, such as titular leader (and Saudi asset) Ahmad Jarba, are accustomed to holding conferences in luxury hotels paid for by Saudi Arabia and Qatar.
Their supposed political headquarters are in NATO member Turkey’s Istanbul. But in reality, the HQ is in Washington.
The only “mandate” that the SNC has is political instructions ordered from Washington. This was made clear days leading up to the Geneva gathering when US secretary of state John Kerry pulled rank on the dithering SNC and warned that if it did not attend the conference its money supply would be cut off.
Kerry’s admonition was an astonishing admission of the fake nature of the SNC and what its real purpose is–to negotiate for Washington’s regime-change objective in Syria.
The political means of regime change in Syria have only belatedly become an American priority since the covert state-sponsored terrorist operation, fomented by the US and its proxies, has failed and descended into a sickening orgy of nihilistic gangsterism and feuding between the various foreign-backed mercenary brigades.
However, the SNC’s political standing is such a non-entity that even the myriad militants fighting in Syria have dismissed it as an irrelevance.
In looking at this weekend’s event in Geneva, it is so transparent that Ahmad Jarba and his fellow flunkies are nothing more than boys who give a Syrian face and accent to Washington’s strategic demands off the Syrian government.
Without the political front of the SNC – indulged in of course by all the Western corporate media – then Washington and its British, French and other allies would be seen for what they are really doing in Syria.
They are destroying a sovereign country with a covert criminal war. The US and its proxies stand guilty of the supreme crime of perpetrating a war of aggression on Syria – and all the while blaming the Assad government for the deaths and destruction.
It is an astounding Orwellian inversion of reality that acquires a veneer of credibility only because of the SNC and mass media propaganda churned out by the likes of the BBC, CNN, the New York Times and the British Guardian.
The latter’s latest story of “industrial-scale killing” by the Syrian government forces, published last week ahead of the Geneva conference, was a classic smear job, according to respected international war crimes lawyer Christopher Black, who pointed out the ridiculous tale that one alleged ex-Syrian police officer took over 50,000 photographs of more than 11,000 dead corpses before sending them to the Guardian and CNN.
The so-called Syrian National Coalition is also a vital component of the Western charade over Syria. It sanitizes the blood-soaked hands of Washington, Britain, France, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Israel by creating the illusion of a “Syrian opposition” when in reality it is a ventriloquist doll handled by war-criminal Western governments.
It is therefore disquieting perhaps that the Syrian authorities should dignify this Western-imposed travesty with the encounter in Geneva.
It seems hard to see what political gain can be achieved from entertaining this Washington-led front.
Probably, the only gain is that the Syrian government’s forbearance of these charlatans tends to dispel the Western media myth of “despotic regime”.
If the Western propaganda narrative on Syria had any substance, then the “Assad regime” would not be amenable to negotiations on finding a political transition from violence.
Attending Geneva is thus an important opportunity for the Syrian government to demonstrate to the world its sovereignty and who are the real perpetrators of conflict in that country. And the Western media are shown for what they are – propaganda peddlers.
Talking to the SNC or at least being in the same room is in itself futile. But the Syrian government’s willingness has a wider political gain.
It must not, however, give one inch to the Washington-scripted demands of the SNC for regime change. That would only be pandering to state terrorism and criminality.
Finian Cunningham, is a columnist at Press TV and a Writer on Dandelion Salad. He can be reached at email@example.com.
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And while the ‘negotiators’ are emitting tons of hot air, people’s misery and death in Syria continue. So many towns destroyed and for what?