Leaked Tape: Kerry Tells Syrian Opposition He Lost the Intervention Argument

By  ShadowProof

At a “sidelines” meeting during UN week, Sec. State John Kerry met with the International Syria Support Group (ISSG) and had a 40-minute discussion with a small group of Syrians, wherein he repeatedly complained that “his diplomacy had not been backed by a serious threat of military force,” that Congress wouldn’t authorize it, and that there is no legal justification for attacking the Assad government. The New York Times reported on some audio that was leaked. Kerry said there are 3 or 4 people (including Kerry) in the Obama administration arguing for the use of force and he lost the argument. The group of Syrians were “representatives of four Syrian groups that provide education, rescue and medical services in rebel-held areas,” possibly the exile opposition groups like Friends of Syria. Kerry did say that there is a “new conversation” going on in the administration since the latest bombing in Aleppo began.

US Cuts Off Geneva Talks With Russia

The State Dept. issued a nuanced statement as they cut off talks with Russia on Syria. Deconfliction will continue
“The United States is suspending its participation in bilateral channels with Russia that were established to sustain the Cessation of Hostilities.”
The State Dept. spokeswoman said only the bilateral talks with Russia are suspended. “We will continue to talk with members of the international community through multilateral fora.”

Last week the French foreign minister claimed to be working on a new UN Security Council resolution that would replace UN 2254, which underpins the Geneva talks and does not include al Nusra (al Qaeda) in the ceasefire. The French resolution would include a clause that says any country who doesn’t support the resolution is complicit in war crimes.

The White House spokesman gave a similar reason for the US pullout of the talks.  The blame falls entirely on Russia, according to the Obama administration’s story.

Russian Foreign Ministry: US Using Al Qaeda for Regime Change

BBC aired an interview with Russian foreign minister, Sergey Lavrov, on Sep. 30, in which he said the US “pledged solemnly to take as a priority an obligation to separate the opposition from Nusra” but “in spite of many repeated promises and commitments… are not able or not willing to do this and we have more and more reasons to believe that from the very beginning the plan was to spare Nusra and to keep it just in case for Plan B or stage two when it would be time to change the regime.”

When asked about the BBC interview, as journalists pressured him, the State Dept. spokesman said he was shaking his head and didn’t know what Lavrov meant, and it was “absurd.” When asked why the US hasn’t targeted al Nusra, Toner said the US “did carry out strikes initially, back in 2014-2015” but now they are intermingled with the “moderate opposition” and it’s too risky to bomb them, but he believes the US did target them in March or “earlier this year.”

The Russian foreign ministry issued a statement on Oct. 3 accusing the US of sabotaging the ceasefire deal and making a “deal with the devil” by using al Qaeda to get the regime change they desire.
Russian Foreign Ministry: “We are becoming more convinced that in a pursuit of a much desired regime change in Damascus, Washington is ready to ‘make a deal with the devil […] forge an alliance with hardened terrorists, dreaming of turning back the course of history […] is not in a hurry to separate US-oriented anti-government forces from it […] covers it with the shield of opposition groups which formally confirmed their participation in the cessation of hostilities.”
During the Sep. 30 State Dept. briefing, several western journalists challenged spokesman, Mark Toner, about al Nusra (al Qaeda) in East Aleppo, about the US ability to fulfill their obligations in the US-Russia deal to separate “moderate” opposition from al Qaeda, and about the US intentions with respect to al Qaeda in Syria. Toner denied that the US is propping up al Qaeda, but acknowledged that the moderate opposition did not detach from them.

Al Nusra’s treatment of the Syrian minority Druze “is little better than the brutality ISIS has inflicted on Yezidis, Kurds, and other minorities unfortunate enough to find themselves within their reach,” according to Daveed Gartenstein-Ross and Aymenn Jawad al-Tamimi at Foreign Affairs magazine, published by the Council on Foreign Relations.

New Russian Anti-Missile/Anti-Aircraft System in Syria Can Defend Against Cruise Missile Attack

A Russian SA-23 system reportedly arrived by ship over the weekend.  This type of missile defense system hasn’t been deployed outside of Russia before and can be used to defend against cruise missiles, aircraft, and ballistic missiles. Fox News’ Pentagon reporter speculates that the deployment of this system may be to defend against a “potential attack from the United States or its allies” and anonymous officials say it “could potentially counter any American cruise missile attack in Syria.” The 2013 Obama administration plan for a military regime change attack involved cruise missiles.

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Operation Euphrates Shield, 300 US Special Forces With FSA

Several reports on social media, with photos, show that there are Turkish flags on public buildings in the northern Syrian town of Jarablus, which Turkey took from ISIS when they invaded Syria.  A town council meeting photo shows a Turkish flag and a picture of Attaturk on the wall. Syrian state media reported it and said it was in violation of international law and Syria’s sovereignty.

Syrian media reported that the US coalition warplanes bombed Dabiq on Monday, and “rebel fighters of the Euphrates Shield expelled ISIS from the eastern suburb of Maree town.” “American, Turkish and opposition forces” are advancing toward Dabiq and the US-backed opposition say they will be there within 2 days. The Telegraph article notes that the Free Syrian Army (FSA) fighters are accompanied by 300 US special forces.

Presidential envoy for the anti-ISIS coalition, Brett McGurk, said: “Coalition actively supporting Syrian opposition forces as they advance to within a few kilometers of  ISIL’s weakening stronghold Dabiq.” Jihadists believe that Dabiq is “the preordained site of the final apocalyptic battle between Muslims and Christians,” based on their interpretation of the Prophet Muhammad. The town has no other strategic importance, but ISIS has reportedly sent hundreds of fighters to defend it.

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US Peace Council Fact-Finding Mission: Syrian War is an Invasion, Not a Civil War

_ A delegation from the US Peace Council traveled to Syria in July on a fact-finding mission and concluded that: “What we saw goes against everything we read in the United States.” They plan to organize events to share their findings.
US Peace Council: “The delegation was deeply impressed by the unity and determination of the Syrian people to defend their country and their sovereignty; their rejection of efforts to divide the population along sectarian lines; and their determined emphasis that what is going on in Syria is not a civil war but a foreign imposed invasion.”
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