Tuesday, 17 September 2013


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Press TV has talked with Sukant Chandan, a political analyst from London, to discuss Russia’s plan regarding the chemical weapons in Syria.

What follows is a rough transcription of the interview. 

Press TV: Mr. Chandan do you think that the deal on Syria’s chemical weapons will lead to a political solution? Is there a guarantee, so to speak, that plans for a military strike against Syria will be abandoned? 

Chandan: I think that we have to understand that in the greatest scheme of things, that “West” i.e. the new colonial imperialist powers, are on the precipice of falling off the pages of history altogether. 

They are in a deep crisis economically, culturally and morally they are, basically, bankrupt and so really, they have about 10 to 20 years which is the remaining time that they maintain their military monopoly and terror across the world. 

They recognize this and this is why they employed in putting into place certain bullying mechanisms to ensure that, basically, this trajectory does not occur and they can reign it back at best they can and the main means by which they do this is war and sanctions. 

So on the issue of Syria specifically, I do not think that anyone should be fooled; it is not a question of will they go to war or will not they, it is when will they. 

And what Russia has done with the backing of the Syrian government and China and others of the Global South, [is that] it has sabotaged the rolling war machine plans, specifically here and now against Syria.

And for the Syrians part is Mr. Haidar who is the minister for reconciliation in Syria has said that this is a victory for Syria thanks to our Russian counterpart.

So really we are still in a game whereby the chess pieces are being moved towards war against Syria but we have a bit more of a breathing space right now. 

Press TV: Mr. Chandan let us look at how Russia has reacted to all of this. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, I am quoting now, he has accused the European countries of trying to “reinterpret the chemical weapons agreement” and now Lavrov himself is being seen by a lot of people as saying or rather suggesting that Russia will actually resist any rush to threaten military intervention, for instance if there is noncompliance by Assad or some been saying that this means that Russia is going to blame the militants if any violations take place. 

What do you think about the Russian position? Does it mean that Russia is prepared to standby Syria if the international community comes up with evidence, etc. that the Syrian government is responsible? 

Chandan: The Syrian government would not be responsible. I think all indicators point that it is the rebels who have used chemical weapons - if anyone has. 

Turkish authorities found the death squads in Turkey in possession of chemical weapons and the UN investigator, earlier this year, Mrs. [Carla] Del Ponte, also in her findings found that indicators pointed towards the death squads or otherwise known as the rebels used chemical weapons and not the Syrian government. 

Mr. Lavrov, Mr. Putin have played this with great finesse and panache and with great swagger as well; leaving John Kerry and Mr. Fabius of France and Mr. Hague running around like silly little... boys which they are trying to puff up their chests and make out that and they were not trumped by the wrestler of bears in Moscow and his counterpart Mr. Lavrov. 

So they often try to make out that somehow they are on the driving seat, they are not. 

Mr. Kerry is putting words in the mouths of his colleagues in Moscow, which Mr. Lavrov obviously gave back as good as he got by saying that we are not going to go into a strategy of militarization and threats of a military type against Syria. 

But where I would agree with our colleague from the Hudson Institute, is that this will not be a replay of Iraq post-1990 because we are in a totally different historical, political phase than we were through the 90’s. 

The 90’s basically, the beginning of the 90’s was the Western powers, kind of, claiming the unipolar moment across the world in the New World Order slogan which was exhibited unfortunately on the Iraqi people until 2003. 

We are not in a unipolar moment, that moment has gone. We are now in a process where the Global South is trying its best with all its challenges and problematics, to bury the Western hegemony once and for all and also Putin has made a real master stroke..., in his public letter to the US public printed in the New York Post.

He has very cleverly tapped into the narrative of the war on terror but put it on its head that is the Global South’s war on terror, which is actually a terror which is given life, funded, financed and trained historically and currently by London and Washington. 

Press TV: Mr. Chandan let us have your view on this as well. Our viewers there had been suggesting that this should not be considered a victory for Damascus. They are asking why should Damascus actually take this move? 

Chandan: On principle I am in agreement that Damascus should not, in no way, risk its capacity or its strength and hand it over potentially to the devils running London, Washington and Paris. 

However the concrete situation as we find it, Israel is not under threat by the death squads in either Libya or Syria or elsewhere. Actually it facilitates Zionist and imperialists’ strategy and agenda in the region of divide and rule and dividing and destroying and keeping the state of Israel safe, that the white settler state of Israel would not have bombed Damascus twice in the last two years and it would not be advocating war against Syria if it was under any kind of threat from the death squads and also at the Golan Heights the death squads were operating for a few months and they did not touch the white settler Zionist state, so state of Israel is safe in this whole thing. 

So it is a victory in this particular moment in this context for Syria because it would have been a disaster for a massive bombing campaign, even for a month or so or several weeks because it would have reversed. 

And this is what we have to understand as well, I think this is what is missing in this debate and conversation; that it is now widely recognized and the consensus is that the Syrian Arab Army, allied with Hezbollah; the Syrian government is obviously reversing the trajectory of the death squads winning ground. 

They have been losing since al-Qusayr earlier in the year and that is why... coupled with some other factors in the region, why the West thought that they had to go in and to intervene and to change the circumstances in Syria. 

Whatever the Syrian government and the allies can do to stop an increase of military pressure against itself is to the favor not only of Syria, not only to the regional powers who are propping up the Resistance Axis but to all Global South countries because all Global South countries are threatened by this type of strategy and agenda. 

Press TV: Mr. Chandan would you say that the situation is too complex to hold anyone responsible for blocking this political solution? 

Chandan: I think that the Syrian government has always been open to sitting around the negotiating table with its opponents and the death squads who are backed by the Persian Gulf and London and Washington and Paris. 

I think that still remains the case, I think the West now is terrified of a Geneva II because the situation on the ground is not favorable to them but from the BRICS part, from Russia, China and Syria, they are very much open to that but of course our guest is right that at the end of the day you cannot win at the negotiating table (if) you have not won on the battlefield and it is in the battlefield that the final analysis, the course of history and the conclusive course of history will be made. 

So that is the situation as we find it but I reiterate, if the Syrian government falls, it is another disaster akin to Libya for the entire Global South. 

That is why the entire Global South is coming to the defense of Syria against this Western-initiated conspiracy and project against Syria as a resistant country in the region. 

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