Posted by: Puddy Dunne | September 3, 2013

EXCLUSIVE: Syrians In Ghouta Claim Saudi-Supplied Rebels Behind Chemical Attack – MINTPRESS NEWS

EXCLUSIVE: Syrians In Ghouta Claim Saudi-Supplied Rebels Behind Chemical Attack

Rebels and local residents in Ghouta accuse Saudi Prince Bandar bin Sultan of providing chemical weapons to an al-Qaida linked rebel group.

This image provided by by Shaam News Network on Thursday, Aug. 22, 2013, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, purports to show several bodies being buried in a suburb of Damascus, Syria during a funeral on Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013. Syrian government forces pressed their offensive in eastern Damascus on Thursday, bombing rebel-held suburbs where the opposition said the regime had killed more than 100 people the day before in a chemical weapons attack. The government has denied allegations it used chemical weapons in artillery barrages on the area known as eastern Ghouta on Wednesday as "absolutely baseless." (AP Photo/Shaam News Network)

This image provided by by Shaam News Network on Thursday, Aug. 22, 2013, purports to show several bodies being buried in a suburb of Damascus, Syria during a funeral on Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013, following allegations of a chemical weapons attack that reportedly killed 355 people. (AP Photo/Shaam News Network)

Clarification: Dale Gavlak assisted in the research and writing process of this article, but was not on the ground in Syria. Reporter Yahya Ababneh, with whom the report was written in collaboration, was the correspondent on the ground in Ghouta who spoke directly with the rebels, their family members, victims of the chemical weapons attacks and local residents. 

Gavlak is a MintPress News Middle East correspondent who has been freelancing for the AP as a Amman, Jordan correspondent for nearly a decade. This report is not an Associated Press article; rather it is exclusive to MintPress News. 

Ghouta, Syria — As the machinery for a U.S.-led military intervention in Syria gathers pace following last week’s chemical weapons attack, the U.S. and its allies may be targeting the wrong culprit.

Interviews with people in Damascus and Ghouta, a suburb of the Syrian capital, where the humanitarian agency Doctors Without Borders said at least 355 people had died last week from what it believed to be a neurotoxic agent, appear to indicate as much.

The U.S., Britain, and France as well as the Arab League have accused the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad for carrying out the chemical weapons attack, which mainly targeted civilians. U.S. warships are stationed in the Mediterranean Sea to launch military strikes against Syria in punishment for carrying out a massive chemical weapons attack. The U.S. and others are not interested in examining any contrary evidence, with U.S Secretary of State John Kerry sayingMonday that Assad’s guilt was “a judgment … already clear to the world.”

However, from numerous interviews with doctors, Ghouta residents, rebel fighters and their families, a different picture emerges. Many believe that certain rebels received chemical weapons via the Saudi intelligence chief, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, and were responsible for carrying out the dealing gas attack.

“My son came to me two weeks ago asking what I thought the weapons were that he had been asked to carry,” said Abu Abdel-Moneim, the father of a rebel fighting to unseat Assad, who lives in Ghouta.

Abdel-Moneim said his son and 12 other rebels were killed inside of a tunnel used to store weapons provided by a Saudi militant, known as Abu Ayesha, who was leading a fighting battalion. The father described the weapons as having a “tube-like structure” while others were like a “huge gas bottle.”

Ghouta townspeople said the rebels were using mosques and private houses to sleep while storing their weapons in tunnels.

Abdel-Moneim said his son and the others died during the chemical weapons attack. That same day, the militant group Jabhat al-Nusra, which is linked to al-Qaida, announced that it would similarly attack civilians in the Assad regime’s heartland of Latakia on Syria’s western coast, in purported retaliation.

“They didn’t tell us what these arms were or how to use them,” complained a female fighter named ‘K.’ “We didn’t know they were chemical weapons. We never imagined they were chemical weapons.”

“When Saudi Prince Bandar gives such weapons to people, he must give them to those who know how to handle and use them,” she warned. She, like other Syrians, do not want to use their full names for fear of retribution.

A well-known rebel leader in Ghouta named ‘J’ agreed. “Jabhat al-Nusra militants do not cooperate with other rebels, except with fighting on the ground. They do not share secret information. They merely used some ordinary rebels to carry and operate this material,” he said.

“We were very curious about these arms. And unfortunately, some of the fighters handled the weapons improperly and set off the explosions,” ‘J’ said.

Doctors who treated the chemical weapons attack victims cautioned interviewers to be careful about asking questions regarding who, exactly, was responsible for the deadly assault.

The humanitarian group Doctors Without Borders added that health workers aiding 3,600 patients also reported experiencing similar symptoms, including frothing at the mouth, respiratory distress, convulsions and blurry vision. The group has not been able to independently verify the information.

More than a dozen rebels interviewed reported that their salaries came from the Saudi government.


Saudi involvement

In a recent article for Business Insider, reporter Geoffrey Ingersoll highlighted Saudi Prince Bandar’s role in the two-and-a-half year Syrian civil war. Many observers believe Bandar, with his close ties to Washington, has been at the very heart of the push for war by the U.S. against Assad.

Ingersoll referred to an article in the U.K.’s Daily Telegraph about secret Russian-Saudi talksalleging that Bandar offered Russian President Vladimir Putin cheap oil in exchange for dumping Assad.

“Prince Bandar pledged to safeguard Russia’s naval base in Syria if the Assad regime is toppled, but he also hinted at Chechen terrorist attacks on Russia’s Winter Olympics in Sochi if there is no accord,” Ingersoll wrote.

“I can give you a guarantee to protect the Winter Olympics next year. The Chechen groups that threaten the security of the games are controlled by us,” Bandar allegedly told the Russians.

“Along with Saudi officials, the U.S. allegedly gave the Saudi intelligence chief the thumbs up to conduct these talks with Russia, which comes as no surprise,” Ingersoll wrote.

“Bandar is American-educated, both military and collegiate, served as a highly influential Saudi Ambassador to the U.S., and the CIA totally loves this guy,” he added.

According to U.K.’s Independent newspaper, it was Prince Bandar’s intelligence agency that first brought allegations of the use of sarin gas by the regime to the attention of Western allies in February.

The Wall Street Journal recently reported that the CIA realized Saudi Arabia was “serious” about toppling Assad when the Saudi king named Prince Bandar to lead the effort.

“They believed that Prince Bandar, a veteran of the diplomatic intrigues of Washington and the Arab world, could deliver what the CIA couldn’t: planeloads of money and arms, and, as one U.S. diplomat put it, wasta, Arabic for under-the-table clout,” it said.

Bandar has been advancing Saudi Arabia’s top foreign policy goal, WSJ reported, of defeating Assad and his Iranian and Hezbollah allies.

To that aim, Bandar worked Washington to back a program to arm and train rebels out of a planned military base in Jordan.

The newspaper reports that he met with the “uneasy Jordanians about such a base”:

His meetings in Amman with Jordan’s King Abdullah sometimes ran to eight hours in a single sitting. “The king would joke: ‘Oh, Bandar’s coming again? Let’s clear two days for the meeting,’ ” said a person familiar with the meetings.

Jordan’s financial dependence on Saudi Arabia may have given the Saudis strong leverage. An operations center in Jordan started going online in the summer of 2012, including an airstrip and warehouses for arms. Saudi-procured AK-47s and ammunition arrived, WSJ reported, citing Arab officials.

Although Saudi Arabia has officially maintained that it supported more moderate rebels, the newspaper reported that “funds and arms were being funneled to radicals on the side, simply to counter the influence of rival Islamists backed by Qatar.”

But rebels interviewed said Prince Bandar is referred to as “al-Habib” or ‘the lover’ by al-Qaida militants fighting in Syria.

Peter Oborne, writing in the Daily Telegraph on Thursday, has issued a word of caution about Washington’s rush to punish the Assad regime with so-called ‘limited’ strikes not meant to overthrow the Syrian leader but diminish his capacity to use chemical weapons:

Consider this: the only beneficiaries from the atrocity were the rebels, previously losing the war, who now have Britain and America ready to intervene on their side. While there seems to be little doubt that chemical weapons were used, there is doubt about who deployed them.

It is important to remember that Assad has been accused of using poison gas against civilians before. But on that occasion, Carla del Ponte, a U.N. commissioner on Syria, concluded that the rebels, not Assad, were probably responsible.

Some information in this article could not be independently verified. Mint Press News will continue to provide further information and updates . 

Dale Gavlak is a Middle East correspondent for Mint Press News and has reported from Amman, Jordan, writing for the Associated Press, NPR and BBC. An expert in Middle Eastern affairs, Gavlak covers the Levant region, writing on topics including politics, social issues and economic trends. Dale holds a M.A. in Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Chicago. Contact Dale at

Yahya Ababneh is a Jordanian freelance journalist and is currently working on a master’s degree in journalism,  He has covered events in Jordan, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Russia and Libya. His stories have appeared on Amman Net, Saraya News, Gerasa News and elsewhere.


  1. Bandar Bush and the Syrian Subversion – Corbett Report

    Haifa bint Faisal, Price Bandars wife – 911 connection


    Preliminary Earthquake Report Magnitude 6.0
    Date-Time 3 Sep 2013 20:19:06 UTC
    3 Sep 2013 11:19:06 near epicenter
    3 Sep 2013 14:19:06 standard time in your timezone

    Location 51.198N 130.405W
    Depth 1 km

    Very big and very shallow – Get ready coto.

    • Patrick, has Saudi Arabia or Israel ever been hit with a HAARP attack?🙂

      • Not to my knowledge. Not one I can recall.

  2. Yes the Map is Back!!

    This is a NWO French -Saudi operation. Heres the cointelpro from the le cercle

    French Spies Provide New Details on Assad’s Chemical Weapons Program

  3. Saudi – Bush Skull and Bones Hearing – The Yale Team

  4. ALL of the voices on this telephoney are the “usual suspects”–as if WE haven’t been listening into Their “Propaganda Programming” 24/7.

    WE’RE HERE. and here we are. I suggest a thorough reading of this Dog Poet bromide, and a contemplation of the State -We-Each-Are-In.

    I don’t care to postulate any more about the state I reside in. It is a pitiful state as all can agree.

    So, here we are. Any objectivity, any brainy interlocutions are real-avent, and important to our lucidity.

  5. Redline..redline…the phrase of the day… where have I heard that phrase uttered not so long ago…Oh yea, it was bibi nuttyahoo and his ACME bomb.

    These jerks can’t even come up with new catch phrases for their bs. 91% of the people have seen enough war. The word is out guys, Assad didn’t do the gassing…give it up!

    • Your state Boomer? Look at what I have to be proud about! Menendez the mental midget !

      Opening a hearing on Obama’s call for military strikes against the Syrian regime, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee said Tuesday that he supports the president’s decision. “Yes, there are risks to action, but the consequences of inaction are greater and graver still: further humanitarian disaster in Syria; regional instability; the loss of American credibility around the world; an emboldened Iran and North Korea; and the disintegration of international law,” U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez, D-New Jersey, said.

      — Menendez cautioned against inaction in the face of a possible U.N. Security Council veto, in an apparent reference to Russia and China. “Are we willing to watch a slaughter just because the patrons of that slaughter are willing to use their veto at the United Nations to allow it to happen so their beneficiary can stay in power?” he asked.

      OMG.. I can barely control my anger. I’d like to round up a posse and drag these bastards from their houses and hang them all from the highest tree. That is fitting of treasonous demons such as these.



    by Miri Wood, R.N.,c.

    Mr. President, do you remember these words?

    “I do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the office of the President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect, and defend, the Constitution of the United States.”

    Did not you, the Constitutional lawyer, recite them, not once, but twice, take this oath? Might you please explain how the bombing of Syria, scheduled to begin, today, when the U.N. inspectors leave Damascus, will help in the promotion of the general welfare, of the United States population?

    Is it not enough, Mr. President, that while you have overseen the dismantling of public schools in our country, and the ripping to shreds of the social services safety net for U.S. citizenry, you have already sent more than $815 million to the barbarian mercenaries deployed to destroy Syria? How did your Press Secretary, Josh Earnest, manage to state that “the president of the United States is elected with the duty to protect the national security interests in the United States of America” [1] at the recent press briefing, without his nose growing several meters, as Syria does not, and has not, been a threat to U.S. “security interests”?

    Sir, can you please explain how it is possible, that you, with the intelligence capabilities of the most feared and rabid country in the world, might be totally ignorant of the geopolitical situation in Syria, while I, a mere layperson with mere internet access, might offer decent political analyses of the situation?

    How can you not know that U.S. taxes, instead of going to improve decaying U.S. infrastructure and/or a productive jobs program, has gone to behead dozens of Syrian citizens, blow up university professors in their cars, assassinate internationally respected sheikhs – and their grandsons — in mosque, at prayer,burn down centuries-old souks, commit massive acts of cultural genocide , loot Syrian factories, launch chemical weapons grade attack against the population of Khan al Assal, blow up engineering students and architectural students, in the midst of their studies, in separate terrorist attacks, and acts of literal cannibalism, to name a mere few of the bottomless pit of atrocities that have battered Syria, since the NATO and Qatar and Saudi and Israel proxy war against this country began, almost three years ago

    How were you able to applaud McCain’s illegal entry into Syria, to break bread with his kidnapping and cannibal friends (imagine a foreign politician sneaking into the U.S., to meet with “rebels” murdering your population, and trying to assassinate you!)? How did you miss your co-Nobel Laureate Mairead Corrigan Maguire’s report on her tour of Syria and Syrian refugee camps in Jordan?

    How do you ignore NATO’s own research that reports 70% (seventy) of Syrians support their country, and their President al Assad against the terrorist invaders? [2] How do you use YouTube videos uploaded by these mercenary forces, as justification to finalize the destruction of Syria, while ignoring the YouTube video of the terrorists in a lab in the Turkish border, killing two rabbits with what appears to be VX, an actual nerve agent (GB has not been used by the Wahhabi sex Jihadists, against Syria; weapons grade chlorine has. The GB propaganda was begun by Israeli intelligence, and regurgitated by globalized Vichy urinalists).

    Keev? Mr. President, keev?

    How do you rear two adolescent daughters while spending private time with your “Kill List”? [3] How do you ever kiss your children while running death squads against the Syrian? How do you justify your own barbarity to them? Prior to the beginning of our heinous proxy war, Syria had no enmity towards US. [4]

    I am a U.S. born, U.S. citizen who has never seen anything other than genocide committed by my country, throughout my not too-long life time. How do you forget we were founded as arepublic, not as a satrap of the British empire whose “royalty” we shed our own blood for which to rid ourselves? Dr. Franklin and my distant cousins who fought fascism in World War II, are all rolling in our graves, for what the US has become, a hideous abomination.

    Though pleasantly shocked that the Cameron regime will not be joining your impending atrocity, it appears that Francoise Hollande (who, by the way, really could use a new colorist, to get rid of that shoe polish shine) will be joining you.

    Funny how the countries who have used chemical weapons against civilian populations in the past [4] can destroy other countries, under the excuse that these countries have done the same, is it not?

    A plague on your houses, Mr. President, if you bring your slowly genocidal, covert attack on Syria out of the closet.

    Allow me to also quote your former minister, the Reverend Wright, whom you un-remorsefully threw under a bus: “Goddamn America. Goddamn America.“

    الله، سورية، بشار وبس

    • Passionate, succinct and cutting. bravo Miri Wood. Thanks Deb.

  7. If you are listening to the talking points you are hearing;

    Obama has to murder Syrian Peoples to ‘save face’ or ‘avoid humiliation’

    in Sweden;

    Obombya says; leaders REPRESENTING 98% of the people have set the RED LINE.

    (who thinks they are being represented???)

    While in Sweden before hitting Russia G20 the puppet in command there gave us the global warming infomercial and the jew holocaust meme. Such blatant mind control.

    Public sources, evidence of Assads use of chemical weapons. Where is it Soetoro? I remember CURVEBALL, do you? He said Syria has not denied using them.

    He said the opposition does not have the capability to launch this kind of attack

    1. They still say 1400+ dead where sources are unable to confirm any of these numbers
    2. Capoabilitiy? You mean like 10 men with ten boxcutters bring down three skyscrapers?
    3. We know the opposition needed help just like 911. Saudis, Joos, France and US domestic spies and traitors.

    KILL KILL KILL – We’ll be safer. I get it. Kill everyone but the 10% agenda 21 numbers and then……..Start killing the other 9% (the ones who approve of murder for money. Boy, wont they be surprised?

    • Strong insights there Puddy.

      Why don’t you put up a picture of a Bus, with “Killer Bus” or “Kill or Bust” written on the side, and headshots of the zio-nazis who are hopping on this careening machine?

      We can’t help but notice the usual forked tongued traitors (to Americans & Humanity in general) jumping on the bus and bandwagon barnstorming for WAR. Quite telling isn’t it? I’ll just list a few:

      Hussein Obama
      Joe Biden
      John Kerry
      Hillary Clinton
      John McCain
      Lindsey Graham
      Dick Cheney
      Nancy Pelosi
      Dianne Feinstein

      We can see Sweden is now “on the bus”. We can surmise the entire PNAC signers are “on the bus”. Certainly, all the dual-citizen Zionist policy-makers, and place-kickers seeded through-out the corporatocracy of the political and financial spectrum are “on-the-bus”. The “owners” of the MIC companies that stand to benefit in “new orders” for everything contracted inside & outside of the military wide net are “on-the-bus”. The Media Whores, owners, puppets, and drones are “on-the-bus”. The Gun-Grabbers are “on-the-bus”.

      The Killer Bus is packed like a warhead with gunpowder breathing “do-gooders” who are so mis-directed in their minds that they believe “War is Peace”, “Mass Murder Creates Freedom”, “The End Justifies the Means”.

      Yep. We can see you’re either “On-the-Bus” or you’re not.

      What a strange staging this is? The Killer Bus is packed, blaring propaganda out the megaphones as it careens down the Streets of America. The little sign above the front windshield reads, “Syria”.


    Useless eaters are useless eaters. Kids are included and always used in the FAKE STAGINGS to maximize the effect of the psyop. They have a battle though because they have spent years desensitizing the masses to murder and genocide that they cannot get the public too outraged outraged over an alleged 400 children and nerve gas when they have aborted a 100, 000,000



    WHAT A J0KE!!


    [France’s intelligence services released a perfunctory, eight-page brief for war with Syria yesterday, as Socialist Party (PS) Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault met with leaders of France’s right-wing opposition parties to press them to support President François Hollande’s war drive.

    Hollande’s intelligence brief is a collection of already-discredited lies, non sequiturs, and unsupported claims. Reviewing it makes clear that Hollande’s charges against the Syrian regime are as unsubstantiated as those of British Prime Minister David Cameron, who suffered a humiliating defeat when he tried to obtain parliamentary approval for war in Syria last week.]

  12. There is an obvious ‘BAITING’ happening for the USA Inc. All the EU pussies supporting the hoax and yet they will not support bilateral effort. I think we ought to point our cruise missiles in a different direction.

    They will lose Russian Gas and get Saudi Sarin gas instead? Blood on America time after time. I vote for a tax strike and media blackout. A NATIONAL SLAM DUNK to the committee.

  13. Murder? Ariel Castro Palfreyed in Prison?

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