Thursday 26 September 2013

Things That Are Not True - Only Rebels Use Weapons Mounted On Trucks With Non-Military Colours

One claim that's been constantly repeated by people attempting to prove the Syrian military was not responsible for the August 21st Sarin attack is that the Syrian military would never use trucks with non-military colours.  This claim is a response to the following videos and pictures, that appears to show the same type of munition linked to the August 21st Sarin attack being launched.  As always, it should be noted that the type of munition used has at least two variants, and possible a third, larger, high explosive variant

These photographs and videos from Damascus and Aleppo claim to show the Syrian army using these truck mounted weapons, but the argument has been that these are clearly non-military vehicles, something only the Syrian opposition uses.  While it's true the Syrian opposition mounts plenty of different weapons on trucks of various shapes and sizes, it's certainly not true that only the Syrian opposition uses non-military trucks in this way.  The following video is from a missile test in the Summer of 2012, where a variety of missiles and rockets were launched from the 155th brigade base

As we can see in the video, there's clearly trucks with non-military colour schemes being used to launch large rockets or missiles

The same missile test was also broadcast on State TV, with images of the same vehicles

So it's pretty clear the claim that only the Syrian opposition uses trucks with non-military colours is an inaccurate statement.  In fact, it's not that unusual, as these photos from an Iranian military parade shows (source)

More posted on the subject of the August 21st attacks can be found here, and other posts on chemical weapons and Syria, including extremely informative interviews with chemical weapon specialists, can be found here.

You can contact the author on Twitter @brown_moses or by email at


  1. If the launcher is on a standard articulated lorry trailer, then it can be pulled by any lorry tractor with a standard "fifth wheel".

    Whole point of standardization, really.

  2. You seem to ignore the multitude of confessions by terrorists to the effect that they fired munitions which contained this gas. Your arguments against the government of Dr. Assad are beginning to sound increasingly fragile.

    1. Can you imagine if people like Ziad Fadel documented their own thoughts the way that Higgins does? We would have a full map of the discarded contrarian conspiracy theories that Ziad Fadel had abandoned in the past few months. You could watch him and the other contrarians move from theory to theory while repeating simplistic anti-rebel claims. It would actually be really funny and pathetic.

    2. Unlike logical syllogisms like:

      Because some weapons are fired from trucks that aren't painted to look like the Syrian flag, it logically follows that Assad gassed babies with Sarin in an evacuated warzone controlled by heart-eaters, stacked them up neatly onto piles, and filmed the event in a sophisticated propaganda ploy to encourage a bombing campaign against his people.

      If that isn't proof of Assad's guilt, what is?

    3. Shawn Redden why would you argue against a strawman like that if Higgins' actual words are so easy to argue against? Everyone here read the article and it's pretty clear that Higgins was just narrowly and specifically addressing a common claim in his normal, no-concrete-detail-is-too-small fashion, but you are pretending that he said something completely different. Seriously, the only major claim of his post was "So it's pretty clear the claim that only the Syrian opposition uses trucks with non-military colours is an inaccurate statement."

      Your inability to argue against Higgins' actual words speaks for itself. You are a contrarian twit repeating simplistic negative claims about the rebels because you are driven by bizarre personal compulsions. Your arguments are like flash floods constantly re-covering the same shallow, branching narratives without ever going deeper. It's pathetic.

    4. I also note that those vehemently denouncing the blog's "agenda" all have a pretty transparent agenda of their own.

    5. I cast no illusions about my "agenda": to call out the propaganda of those who relentlessly call for and foment aggressive war. Just as your agenda is clearly is to provide rhetorical cover for cannibals.

      Brown Moses does an incredible job of using logical fallacies to distract attention and provide plausible deniability for the real and obvious perpetrators of international war crimes in Syria today. I didn't argue "against" this piece, per se, because there is nothing against which to argue--BM sets out to prove nothing and succeeds in that task. His article simply suggests, by innuendo and inference, that the Syrian army carried out this attack.

      While brilliant propaganda, it does not even come close to passing the "so what?" test.

    6. "I didn't argue "against" this piece, per se, because there is nothing against which to argue"

      You describe your own argument as a strawman, after the fact of course. Pathetic.

      "Brown Moses does an incredible job of using logical fallacies to distract attention"

      This claim does not make any sense. Brown Moses does not have a bully pulpit or any special control -- he earned his attention on his merits specifically by breaking through the echo-chamber of speculation and rhetoric from pundits on both sides with his focus on concrete details and analysis. Nobody would even be here to read if he had not made some significant breakthroughs outside of the echo-chamber we were already participating in on other source websites. You haven't substantiated your claims at all.

    7. You need to learn what a straw-man is, Admiral Poindexter. Among other things.

  3. I've been following your blog since the end of August. I've read anything from rational, pragmatic, to crazy conspiracies type of arguments.

    But I really can't recall any emphasis on this "constant claim" that you mention in your post.

    I'm a bit puzzled.

    1. This is one of those posts I can link people to Twitter to when they send me that theory, which they do a lot, and it's kinda irritating having to explain it again and again.

    2. well BM, when you start a case you start from the Beginning not just jump half way to start from the meddle!!!!

      first take a look at this!!

      then start answering this:
      1- what is the names of the ppl who killed in 21??
      2- you always talking about 1400 ppl killed and u Calculated as they are 1400 ppl so where you got this number?!!
      3- what if the rebels have sarin and they put it in the rockets location since the area is under them control,of course they watching news as we do and they know what they have to do to make it looks like the assad army did it and add to that the support they get from CIA and other Intelligence from many other countries providing them with how and when to do things?
      4- what about the Result of the autopsy of the bodies?? do you have a report we do not know about?

      you cant build your theory and do your best to prove it from things not known yet!!!

      if the dead ppl did not die because of sarin that mean there is no case, and if they are 50 ppl dead not 1400 also the case is 180 degrees different

      so what about if a chemicals was stored in a rebels location and this location hit by a assad ppl rocket ?

      you maybe will tell me this theory need to be proven by me since am telling it, OKAY then get as the 1400 names and the Result of the autopsy of the bodies for them then we can start with who and how??!!!

    3. Housam seems really excited to show that he is against the rebels, at the expense of his coherence. Does he really expect Higgins to babysit him while he gets a personal explanation of everything we have already been discussing for months? No, he doesn't. He's posting here because he is another one of these zealots who insists on repeating simplistic negative claims about the rebels while refusing to acknowledge the basic context of the war. They think repetition and propaganda will somehow grey the obvious truth.

      We can use a litmus test for these people, to determine if their opinions are worth anything at all. Just ask them to acknowledge some basic facts about the war, then you can watch their bewilderment and panic.


      Housam, as a groundwork for answering your questions, could you tell me whether you accept the following: There is a very small minority group in Syria that has ruled for many years since the original undemocratic takeover of the Assad family. During this time they have consolidated their power, shut out dissent, obstructed political challenges and transformed the military into a tool for keeping their minority group in charge. (This was actually an acceptable status quo across the Middle East at the time). Syria's recent government held power without a reasonable democratic process. Massive public protests and calls for regime change occurred. The foreign fighters number in the thousands but are among millions of genuine Syrian citizens.

    4. I'll ask again, because the last time you cut and pasted this simplistic formula you failed to respond: Which other countries, besides Syria, meet your criteria and warrant a NATO bombing campaign (for peace)?

    5. Russia, Iran, China... haha. You think the onus is on pro-interventionists to solve all other world crises if we want to address this one? Why is that your standard? Couldn't we just as easily say that the anti-rebel contrarians should list the dictators they support? Here Shawn: which other dictators should be propped up because there might be muslims nearby? Should the right to self-determination be discarded for all countries until you are ready for those people to have some rights? Please continue to ignore all context in favor of repeating simplistic, negative claims about the rebels.

      Where else should we encourage dictatorships over democracy and self-determination Shawn?

    6. Uncle Sam would likely be greeted in China as liberators! I can see it now--a ticker-tape parade with confetti made of Treasury bills.

      You are a savvy geopolitical operator, Contra-man. That much is true. No wonder Susan Rice has you on her staff!

    7. I was trolling your rhetorical question and mocking your ideological allies. Isn't it funny that you are shouting against self-determination and finding validation in the messages of the world's authoritarian governments?

      Shawn Redden is on a confused journey as a permanent contrarian now that old century imperialism is falling out of relevance and there isn't one unified boogeyman that can be blamed for every conflict.

    8. 2 points:

      My question was not rhetorical. You listed a set of criteria that easily and obviously includes allies of Uncle Sam. The Zionist settler colony has engaged in ethnic cleansing for 55 years. I was just curious (though not really, because your loyalties are obvious) as to why they don't make the "PLEASE, PLEASE NATO BOMB THEM" list.

      Second, please clarify how one opposes self-determination by calling for Uncle Sam and his allies to stop ratfucking Syria. My position is that Uncle Sam and his lackeys should stop shipping in alCIAda cannibals to terrorize the country, blowing up churches and beheading priests, as they have done for 31 months.

      Is it your position that the US should continue to coordinate the shipping into Syria of alCIAda?

    9. Shawn, your question seemed rhetorical because obviously the criteria I listed don't match any US allies. I suppose you are just making no sense. I don't know what Israel has to do with anything we were talking about.

      You sound very childish when you say "PLEASE PLEASE NATO BOMB THEM" as though your inability to articulate developed arguments extends to the rest of us.

      You want me to give you clarification as to why your position is seen as anti-self-determination? Okay. You are repeating simplistic negative claims about millions of people who represent the majority of the Syrian people and are revolting to gain self-determination, all because you favor the status quo and believe that the country would better serve your geopolitical interests under the current dictator. It is not that hard to understand. You are a hot topic contrarian who thinks intellectualism means adopting views that are rejected by "the grown ups"

    10. Contratrarian X, same propaganda and same lies all the time!!!

      first of all stop talking about the majority and minority in syria, this lies you say it in al jazera and al arabeya the lies channels not to syrian ppl.....i am sunni from homs city and most of the syrian Hate the rebels and they become Assad liker because of how those scum bag rebels cause all of Syrian to Suffers the destruction and the death, those ppl who are taking the Syrian as a human shields and hide inside them houses and force them to Obey them or they will be Treated as shabiha and will be killed

      they are saying to the Syrian if you are not with us then you are against us and they force the ppl to be part of them Ugly revolution

      the most of the army now are Sunni Most ministers and officials in the state and most of Assad supporters are Sunni i am Sunni from homs city i don't support him because i like him but i hate the rebels and i saw by my eyes what is disgusting so please keep your story to say it on al jazera and al Arabia news channel because those channels who are Spreading this propaganda

      also why you keep talking over and over about the democracy and the dictatorship and repeat it again and again??
      who cares in the meddle east about this crap ??!! if it is your value then keep it for your self we don't need to import this crap from the west, if the democracy will bring for us the hearts eaters and taleban and al qaeda then keep it for yourself!!!

      syria was the best country In the entire region with this dictator!!!

      well.... show me the The program or what the opposition promises the Syrian!!!They do not even have something promising Syrians and don't have ideas to show the Syrians something positive from this revolution
      and all what they have is to takeover and remove Assad, well this not enough for Syrian to change them White monkey with a black monkey

    11. Contratrarian X - the criteria I listed don't match any US allies

      Really, you don't think Saudi Arabia matches most of those "criteria"? Or you just don't consider them US allies?

      And housam's questions, first two, to be precise, are, for me as well, a conundrum. You implied in one of your condescending replies that those specific issues were already discussed at large, for months, by Elliot. Do you mind pointing me in the right direction, I maybe missed them, though I doubt it. Honest questions.

    12. The Geopolitics of the Syrian War - Sharmine Narwani

      “Bandar ibn Israel”

    13. Housam,

      That's great that you are so open in your disdain for democracy. I wish that more anti-rebel commentators would admit to this core belief. I wonder if you also have relaxed views on western intervention since your concept of sovereignty is so perverse. After all, in your mind the world is just people who have no right to self-determination -- those rights are limited by special interests. If you believe that the Syrian people should be ruled according to someone else's conception of their rights, then you must understand the idea of America intervening and making decisions for you in the same way. We feel that the Syrian majority's right to self-determination overrules your ideas, and you could of course sympathize with our decision if we attempt to institute a government of our choosing.

      It is interesting that you believe the majority of Syrians are not against Assad. I don't know how you square this with the fact that Assad has been so proactive in controlling the population and preventing elections. In fact, there are countless explanations needed for Assad's actions if there was no revolution.

    14. Gemis,

      Shawn Redden proposed a stupid prompt that indeed did not apply to any US allies. He asked, "to which US allies does the following apply:"

      "very small minority group in Syria that has ruled for many years since the original undemocratic takeover of the Assad family. During this time they have consolidated their power, shut out dissent, obstructed political challenges and transformed the military into a tool for keeping their minority group in charge. (This was actually an acceptable status quo across the Middle East at the time). Syria's recent government held power without a reasonable democratic process. Massive public protests and calls for regime change occurred. The foreign fighters number in the thousands but are among millions of genuine Syrian citizens."

      Obviously these criteria do not apply to Saudi Arabia and you are mistaken.

      You are free to look through Brown Moses' blog for yourself as I am not a babysitter. is a good alternate source.

    15. Whoa--Iran Contra is busting out the transitive property on you! "It is not because it is not!"

      Now if that isn't compelling for you, Gemis, what is?

    16. Note, also, that the occupation of Palestine is again blotted out.

      On humanitarian grounds, which is the better cause to support?

      1. A 65 year campaign to end apartheid in Palestine.
      2. A campaign to fund, transport, provision, arm, train, and direct operations by foreign alCIAda operatives in Syria to blow up marketplaces and devour innards.

      Which would you choose?

    17. Contratrarian X - You are free to look through Brown Moses' blog for yourself.

      I already did.

      I was asking you to show me where did I miss the months long discussion, on this blog, about determining the identity and the number of the victims, because you said "we have already been discussing [these] for months".

      Were you just lying, mate?

    18. @Contratrarin X,
      "That's great that you are so open in your disdain for democracy"

      YES, your democracy is under our boots, and we are not waiting YOU to learn us how we should do our things, WE have something called shora and its enough for us to be okay, so keep it for you and dont dare to tell us how to do things!!!!!

      you keep saying "self-determination"!!!
      well just keep this in your mind between SYRIAN and SYRIAN there is no thing called self determination,,, we are one nation and we fight then we back as we was i will accept any syrian to lead the country even if he is from the minority and what ever his background BUT he should be loyal to his country not a toy serving the other countries... so this something you are not allowed to speak about since you are not Syrian and focus on your own country

      you said
      "We feel that the Syrian majority's right to self-determination overrules your ideas"

      lol... HOW YOU ARE to feel like that!!!
      assad told all the syrian that he is ready to leave by election he know what is the syrian want and we are the SYRIAN know what is the syrian want the syrian Opposition know about that and thats why they refuse to do election before assad resign and not to be nominate him self again
      so please leave the feeling about syria for syrian and get yourself a real thing to do

      you said:
      "It is interesting that you believe the majority of Syrians are not against Assad"

      again!!!! you are a part of the syrian Opposition propaganda since they want to win a war by media and by spreading this type of propaganda!!

      well if this what you think then wait for the 2014 election and you will see!!

      regarding the democracy you bragging about, how come the united state of America need the bless of a Zionist to be a president... lol what a democracy!!!! and what a self determination!!!!

      Feelings emotion, tenderness and kindness you should direct them to the Palestinians who die in the hands of Israeli and American blessing since over 60 years

      is there a real democracy in the world?? in the united nations??!!
      if there is then a Muslim should be a permanent member of the Security Council with veto powers because They represent more than a billion and a half of the population of the earth!!!


  4. I have to hand it to you, BM: you don't often see a non sequitur wrapped inside a straw man!

    Your world war is not looking likely, I'm sorry to say, but with a few more false flag attacks and your continued, relentless effort to provide plausible deniability to people who eat hearts on camera, it ain't over just yet!

    Keep working for world war!

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Shawn Redden's continuous foaming at the mouth continues to represent the only evidence that rebels have been using chemical weapons

    3. Obama and his Red Line :)
      Cui bono, the rebels or Assad?

  5. Brown Moses and everyone,
    Would love your feedback on my new post examining the evidence contradicting a regime attack (such as liwa al-islam video and the mint press story).

  6. Many weapon systems are designed to use civilian means of transportation. Anti-ship cruise missiles assembled in standard cargo containers, that can be fired from the deck of civilian ship or from 18-wheeler. Intercontinental ballistic missiles on their launchers are disguised as refrigerated railroad carts. Launchers in your pictures do have military colors though. And they are towed by trucks, not by RV. It would be interesting to see army firing long retired BM-14 used in chemical attack though.

    I would also love to see why Syrian army would conveniently give the US much needed excuse for an attack. I see that Saudi are interested - they offered $200 millions for the the US strikes. I see how eager are Kerry and Obama to give Saudi what they want for their money. I can see why terrorists might want the US to knock out Syrian heavy weapons. But I don't see why Syria, Syrian president, Syrian army or any other legitimate Syrian authority for that matter would want the US attack on Syria. Assad is a dumb tyrant who doesn't think "international community will interfere"? He was in lethargic sleep during western aggressions in Iraq, Afghanistan, Yugoslavia, Libya? Or may be Syrian terrorists and their Saudi sponsors didn't expect the reaction of "international community" they actively lobbying for?

  7. Killed it. Advantage, Brown Moses.

    1. Proving nothing better than noone...

    2. Shawn, are you saying you still believe that only rebels use weapons mounted on trucks with non-military colors?

    3. Don't care one way or another--never did. It has nothing to do with which of your heart-eater buddies carried out the Ghouta operation.

  8. It is an absolute fact that despite Brown Moses' meticulous research and the usual suspects claiming that pure speculation is evidence (surprising really considering Obama's background in law). We are still no nearer to finding out who did these chemical attacks. The so called evidence is neither water tight nor compelling. Many areas within Syria have been controlled by both sides and I’ve no doubt weapons been captured and used by different factions. Any evidence from the UN inspectors is tainted purely because the rebels had control of what they did and didn't see during their investigation. Videos of launchers cannot be counted as evidence to convict either side. Ask who had the most to gain from the use of chemical weapons to find out the most likely culprit , having said that , I've seen no clear evidence to conclude either side were guilty.

  9. I cannot remember a single post where the blog author has advocated war, or any other specific action. Yet he's repeatedly accused of bending evidence to that end, usually by people who are promoting the most convoluted conspiracy theories, the evidence for many of which is known to have been faked.

    There are many comments denying facts which everybody but the Kremlin has accepted, which may be a clue as to who is orchestrating the flow tide of codswallop hitting this blog.

    The rebels having control of what the Inspectors did and didn't see is a grim joke considering the way in which the Assad regime strictly controlled their opportunities to see anything at all.

    1. Assad is not even close to being officially designated a prime suspect with respect to the chemical attacks. That is a fact.

      The Russians have a much better idea of what is happening and for various reasons may have to stay silent. It may not be helpful for the culprits to be revealed at the present time.

      Russia has Rwanda as a precedent to be avoided. There are a large number of sides to this struggle, not all of whom conveniently fit a pro or anti regime profile.

  10. By implication , Mr Higgins appears to be anti-Assad. The debate over rocket launchers is irrelevant because either side could have any weapons. The only videos that could be seen as concrete evidence are the ones with the rows of dead bodies but only if names could be put to those deceased. The figure of 1400 dead has never been supported by any kind of list and even though I haven't scoured the videos of the aftermath if you count every single body it can only run into hundreds.
    In saying that , I don't mean to diminish the seriousness of this crime , every death in Syria is a crime. But it's not just about this atrocity , it's about intervention. The more this crime is made to look like an Assad attack the more likely UN/US strikes will occur. Has anyone looked at Libya lately ..It's not a good template.

    Medawar: Nearly all of the YouTube videos can be regarded as indications only, certainly not evidence. You appear to be very dismissive of anyone suggesting pro-Assad videos yet if we are honest , all the footage should be looked at with suspicion. Claiming your ideas are right because you say so is as ridiculous as claiming other peoples alternatives are orchestrated convoluted conspiracy theories.
    I have neither a pro or anti stance regarding Assad , I just want Syria to return to peace. Sadly , that won't happen if Al Nusra and co are victorious...We'll see a massive ethnic cleansing of Christians and other religions.

  11. It simply isn't true that any side could have any weapons, where those weapons are large and require unique munitions. They either have them, or they do not. This blog has spent many, many posts on exploring the evidence about that, and there's been a lot of informed comment, both ways: something you dismiss in an instant. There is no evidence whatsoever of the rebels having the larger rockets described here, and they are not known in neighbouring countries, either.

    Others have stated that they are Syrian government production, based on a North Korean exercise in reverse engineering an experimental American munition, not actually adopted for service in the US Army. This is consistent with what is known and what can be carefully deduced -and tested- about them. I will go with that explanation until I see a better one, which I haven't, yet. The design is not 100% a copy of the American original: it's a bit heavier and clearly must have a higher impulse rocket motor. This isn't difficult, because the original was meant to cross minefields, not whole landscapes, and was never fitted with anything like the highest-impulse motor that was possible, even at the time it was developed. (The Americans ended up using the British-designed Viper system to clear mines instead: there may be more than one reason for this, the Viper couldn't deliver CW (America wanted a CW ban treaty at the time) and it clears lanes across minefields rather than circular areas, which makes it more useful in battle.)

    At no stage have I promoted any one video as conclusive evidence by itself, rather I and all the other non-Hasbara have been looking for consistencies between videos and other material from different sources. This filters out misinterpretation as well as deception, and there's bound to be an element of both in situations like this.

    US strikes are not going to happen as a consequence of anything discussed on this blog, or AT ALL, in the current political climate. You seem terrified that evidence of Assad's guilt will trigger bombing, and it's been obvious for weeks that the US already has the evidence it would need; what it lacks is a confidence in Congress that airstrikes would actually do any good, which means that as regards your final paragraph, you are still shouting loudly at a world that has been converted for several weeks now, but you are too convinced of the USA's evil plotting to have noticed.

    Assad's forces did it (with or without his direct order: there is still doubt on that score and always will be) and denying this is to ignore more than a few videos, as you claim. But America ISN'T going to bomb now, no matter how much evidence emerges about the August the 21st attack. America's decision not to bomb did not involve any doubt the matter of responsibility and culpability at all: it was based entirely on efficacy and that will not alter in the light of fresh evidence regarding the former.

    However, should there be another gas attack on any scale, especially one outside Syria's borders, then different imperatives (such as article 51) will come into play. Sending Syrian air force SU24s to test Cypriot air defences was far riskier than anything else that Assad has done, because the response to such an incursion could be immediate and would not require UN Security council approval.

    Determining what Mr Higgins thinks by "implication" borders on insanity.
    Try and get a grip on what's going round and round inside your own head, before telling us what you claim Mr Higgins is thinking.

    1. I would strongly disagree. Both sides have suffered serious setbacks over the last two years. So when a government army base is overrun by rebels , do you believe all the 'valuables' are collected up and taken with them? Luckily , I've never been in that position but common sense tells me not to bother hitching up the howitzer before I flee.
      I didn't say you did promote any one video as evidence. What I did say is that I don't trust ANY of it. Did you see on YouTube the Dutch gentleman who claimed he could 'take off'. It looked very convincing. I'm sure he didn't have MGM studios to set his ruse up. Anyone with a camera or camera phone and a video editing suite can make things look very convincing.
      So you have insider knowledge that Obama isn't going to bomb Syria? So half the US navy sitting just off the coast of Syria is simply a show of strength? Where is this evidence the Congress has? Just like you , Kerry has been relying on YouTube , if it wasn't so serious for the people of Syria , it would be funny.
      'The world' hasn't been converted because 'the world' didn't believe the hype in the first place. Furthermore , Obama didn't carry out the bombing because he was worried about Syrians or about breaking the law , he was forced to because of very strong US public opinion opposed to attacking . The British Members of Parliament reflected that when they opposed the attack and Obama knew that the Senators would reject it too. I have good reason to fear Obama bombing Syria , he's used drone attacks much more than even Bush did and of course his involvement in Libya . I'll remind you again, have you seen the state of Libya lately? If , as you seem to be an advocate of intervention, you must be very proud of the Libyan campaign.
      What are you implying with 'gas attack outside Syria's borders'? Assad hasn't responded to any Israeli attacks nor Turkish interference , what makes you think he would now?
      'Determining what Mr Higgins thinks by "implication" borders on insanity.'.What's with the insults? Are you telling me Mr Higgins is leaning towards rebel use of CW's?

    2. Cyprus is partially and illegally occupied by one of the proxy war actors. There is a whole mountain of trouble there. Not to mention wealth and resources almost beyond measure.

      Turkey, Syria, Israel, Lebanon, Cyprus all want the gas. Turkey's legal claim is not so good. So Turkish planes were intruding on Israel's airspace and Israeli jets had to see them off.

      Attacking NATO member on Cyprus is only a potential NATO violation if it is a sovereign British base being attacked. Even that is a bit up in the air. It is not a NATO issue if Turkish forces are attacked on Cyprus, because they are there illegally.

  12. The way to avoid ethnic cleansing by the extremists, is for Assad to do a deal with the moderate rebel groups. With Russia shielding him from all pressure to do this, he won't, and this plays into the hands of the (well-funded) extremists as much as American intervention would.

    Both Assad and the moderates are going to run out of money sometime soon, unless they start talking to each other, because money tends to follow results and at the moment, the extremists are the ones producing results.

    1. I see:
      You would apparently prefer a fight till everyone is dead, because one man gradually went mad in the madhouse of the battlefield around Homs:

      There is a line between those sceptical of western intentions, and those who really support President Assad, right or wrong and want him to continue in power. Homs was where the previous generation of the Assad dynasty murdered 20,000 people as a punishment killing after a rebellion had been quelled, and that is really the seed event for the present conflict.

      The actions of Abu Sakkar, who was arrested by the FSA, be it noted, do not alter the fact that ethnic cleansing can be avoided only by a deal between the government and the moderates. Trite, glib and ultimately meaningless jibes from the student bar are merely an attempt to suppress unwelcome opinion by trolling.

      The moderates will not always be available to do a deal with: some will run out of resources to fight with and withdraw, others will be killed by the extremists as well as Assad's troops, and some, like Sakkar, will gradually cease to be moderates as they live day to day in carnage.

      Once carnage is normalized, it's not easily halted.

      There will be no American onslaught, unless Assad's attacks start to go beyond Syria's borders, but the extremists will be able to go on fighting for longer than anybody else, partly because they are least affected by carnage, and mainly because their funding is more robust, their external supporters the most implacable. The longer Assad lasts, the more extreme will be the force which finally deposes him and does what it will with the Syrian population.

      Syria is not another "Vietnam" for the west, it's basically one for Russia, because whilst they have successfully focused minds, irretrievably in the case of some commentators on this page, on the issue of Western intervention, Russia's constant intervention on Assad's behalf is the main thing keeping the war going, and as the Saudis have observed, the longer this goes on, the more anti-Russian the Middle East will be when it's all over.

    2. if all the Armed opposition will do as those guys did then the way will be short for a Settlement between both sides

      the guys in the video refuse to be Represented by any of those opposition leaders outside Syria and they recommend the names for who should Represents them in Geneva 2

      Without a doubt assad will be open for them and every thing will be just fine and every body will take what he want, but in case the External opposition will be in Geneva 2 then am not sure of successful!!!

      External opposition mean many agendas for many countries that's why it should be all from inside or who Represents them outside

  13. A truck is a truck and most often will be a civilian article before it is anything else.

    In Aleppo the defenders began using oil drums, not because the air force was running short of bombs, but because the Syrian army, didn't want the Syrian air force dropping bombs on the Syrian army.

    There is a simple explanation for most things. both sides use oil drums, only one side chucks them out of helicopters.

  14. Rebels dismantle 21 Aug type 330mm rocket

    1. I wrote about the at the end of August, lots of other details too

  15. I think the KKK uniforms are a bit scary. It may not be a true variant. They have everything they need as a factor of design to copy what they have. To think these weapons have one source of manufacture is a it of a leap.