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Palestine | International | U.S. | Anti-War
Syria "chemical attack" fits profile of an Israeli false flag
Speed has always been essential in past false flag operations. The mark—Americans—must be compelled to act quickly after "the Hurrah" but before the story unwinds. In the case of Operation Susannah, charred dead U.S. Information Agency employees likely would have been splashed across the front pages of the Washington Post and The New York Times as outraged commentators demanded the permanent U.S. military occupation of the Suez Canal Zone—if only Israel's bombs had gone off when they were supposed to. Similarly, the outrage of the sinking of an innocent U.S. ship and gunning of lifeboats by unmarked Egyptian planes would have triggered orchestrated chants to "Remember the USS. Liberty" and American sympathy with Israel's unilateral expansion of its "security zone." Unfortunately for Israel, Operation Susannah bombs went off too soon and the USS. Liberty crew managed to keep it afloat.
The Obama administration is finalizing a public report aimed at convincing skeptics that—against all logic—the Syrian government used chemical weapons against unarmed civilians. As establishment media breathlessly reports the build-up of Western military forces for a "limited" strike—no convincing proof of who is actually responsible for the casualties portrayed on gruesome videos is yet available. It is therefore useful to analyze the latest pretext for wider conflict against the past actions of the country likely to be the key beneficiary of any U.S. intervention—Israel. Israeli false-flag attacks have typically occurred in moments where long-term territorial issues were in play. The present is just such a moment.
In both the 1954 "Operation Susannah" terror operation against U.S. Information Agency facilities in Egypt and 1967 Israeli air and torpedo attacks on the USS Liberty, the disposition of valuable territory was at stake. In 1954 Israel did not want the great powers to vacate military control of the Suez Canal. Israel calculated that undercover operatives dressed as Arabs bombing U.S. Information Agency installations would convince the United States that Islamic radicals might halt maritime safe passage. The plan backfired when the Israeli operatives bungled the explosives and were caught by Egypt and prosecuted. According to secret files recently released by the Eisenhower Presidential Library, the commander-in-chief came to think the Israeli government was led by "fanatics." (PDF) The Israeli government crisis precipitated by this false-flag-gone-bad became known as the "Lavon Affair." But would the U.S. be in the Suez Canal Zone if the plan had succeeded?
When the American spy ship USS Liberty was repeatedly strafed by Israeli jet-fighters with the intention of sinking it with all hands, territory was at stake. Israel was on the verge of pivoting from a sneak-attack on Egypt to capture the Syrian Golan and was wary of possible U.S. intervention. Although Israel continues to deny it, the vicious nature of the attacks on a U.S. flagged vessel it had over flown and identified numerous times before and during the attack makes the argument that Israel mistook its identity a long-running cover story. That story is slowly being unwound by U.S. intercept declassifications. It is more logical Israel was worried about secret communications intercepts thwarting the planned territorial expansion at Syria's expense.
In the past, some of America's elected leadership worried about being tricked and trip-wired by Israel into disastrous foreign interventions. A declassified 1961 Senate Foreign Relations Committee (PDF) memo states “In recent years there has been an increasing number of incidents involving attempts by foreign governments, or their agents, to influence the conduct of American foreign policy by techniques outside normal diplomatic channels…..there have been occasions when representatives of other governments have been privately accused of engaging in covert activities within the United States and elsewhere, for the purpose of influencing United States Policy (the Lavon Affair).” The Senate Foreign Relations Committee heavily investigated Israel's American lobbing organizations as a result of these concerns, but CIA briefing information about covert Israeli operations remains classified in the Senate record. The hearings and Justice Department actions led to the destruction of the lead Israel lobbying organization—the AZC—and its replacement by another unregistered foreign agent, AIPAC.
In many ways, elaborate false flag operations resemble the core stages of a confidence game or swindle. First there is foundation work and preparations laid for the scheme. Then comes build-up aimed at sucking in the victim or mark. The "hurrah" is the sudden crisis that compels that mark to act—and possibly lose everything. Since 1996, the neoconservative vanguard of the Israel lobby, in a strategy paper written for Benjamin Netanyahu, has urged a "foundation" of select military strikes on Syria. AIPAC and other Israeli fronts then worked to successfully pass the Syria Accountability Act which cut off all US trade and diplomatic ties in 2003. Israel has recently conducted its own military strikes as a "build-up" and to compel the U.S. to get "skin in the game." The "hurrah" stage may be the video saturation of dead children, women and men and media bombast that only the U.S. can respond because there is simply no time to waste. Since western audiences are demonstrably not very shrewd, it is likely that if this is an Israeli false flag, no "corroboration" stage of compelling (yet false) evidence is even necessary, though Israeli intelligence stands ready to provide it. Given Israeli interests, that such evidence is considered credible by the West is staggering.
Speed has always been essential in past false flag operations. The mark—Americans—must be compelled to act quickly after "the Hurrah" but before the story unwinds. In the case of Operation Susannah, charred dead U.S. Information Agency employees likely would have been splashed across the front pages of the Washington Post and The New York Times as outraged commentators demanded the permanent U.S. military occupation of the Suez Canal Zone—if only Israel's bombs had gone off when they were supposed to. Similarly, the outrage of the sinking of an innocent U.S. ship and gunning of lifeboats by unmarked Egyptian planes would have triggered orchestrated chants to "Remember the USS. Liberty" and American sympathy with Israel's unilateral expansion of its "security zone." Unfortunately for Israel, Operation Susannah bombs went off too soon and the USS. Liberty crew managed to keep it afloat (with absolutely no thanks to LBJ).
While the Assad regime's use of chemical weapons to attack civilians while winning the conflict (and just as UN inspectors were arriving) defies all logic, it is clear is that Israel—once again—faces territorial pressures. Under U.S. pressure to negotiate a peace agreement with Palestinians over the next nine months, trip-wiring the U.S. into an open-ended conflict in Syria could be a winning strategy for getting the West to ignore its slow-motion absorption of remaining Palestinian territories, and even provide a pretext for Arab populations to be expelled due to "Syrian infiltration." American taxpayers may once again be left holding the bag for a rushed military intervention that serves no widely-held U.S. interest. In terms of the economy and credibility of U.S. foreign policy, Syria may be America's "last hurrah."