Ramadan Rage: Jihadists Kill 41, Injure 102 in First 4 Days

By Edwin Mora

Islamic terrorists have massacred at least 41 people and injured 102 in the first four days of the holiest month for Muslims, Ramadan, a time when some adherents of Islam believe jihad and martyrdom to be especially heroic and rewarded in paradise.

This year, Muslim leaders declared Thursday to be the start of the holy month, when most Muslims abide by Ramadan’s fasting tradition: abstaining from eating, drinking, smoking, having sex, and other physical needs each day, starting from before the break of dawn until sunset.

The various calls for jihadist groups to halt their campaign of terror has fallen on deaf ears, particularly in Afghanistan, home to the majority of attacks.

So far this Ramadan, the deadliest attack took place on Friday in Afghanistan, when the Taliban carried out an attack in Ghani province, killing nine and wounding seven.

The Afghan Taliban is also behind the attack with the most casualties (8 killed and 55 wounded).

The narco-jihadists targeted a cricket tournament dubbed the “Ramadan Cup,” drawing the ire of Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, who urged the terrorists to stop their attacks during the holy month, echoing the leaders from the U.S. and the United Nations.

In his Ramadan message, American Gen. John Nicholson, the top commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, urged the Taliban to accept Ghani’s offer of a ceasefire and recognition as a legitimate political group.

Tadamachi Yamamoto, the United Nations secretary general’s special representative for Afghanistan, called on the Taliban to “halt the fighting” during Ramadan.

On the first day of Ramadan alone, jihadists carried out at least six attacks, killing 12 people and injuring 30.

Friday has been the deadliest day so far with six attacks — mainly attributed to the Taliban — that killed 26 and wounded 69 others.

Despite the devastating blow the U.S.-led coalition and local forces have dealt the Islamic State’s (ISIS/ISIL) now former caliphate in Iraq and Syria, the terrorist group remains a menace.

ISIS has killed two people and injured one other in Iraq since Ramadan began.

homemade bomb leftover by the jihadist group in Syria has also killed two people in the last four days.

Outside the group’s former caliphate, ISIS claimed responsibility for killing three and injuring three others at a church in Russia’s Muslim-majority Chechnya region.

Last year’s Ramadan marked the bloodiest holy month for Muslims in recent history, with 3,343 casualties (1,639 deaths, 1,704 injuries), according to a Breitbart News tally.

Breitbart News has primarily gleaned its Ramadan casualty count from the Religion of Peace website in coordination with other news reports. The tally mainly covers the death of civilians at the hands of jihadists.

All the terrorist attacks during Ramadan 2018, as documented by Breitbart News, include:

May 17—Farah, Afghanistan—Taliban kills three foreign engineers.
May 17—Kashmir, India—Terrorists kidnap, slit throat of 23-year-old man after Indian government declares first Ramadan ceasefire in 18 years.
May 17—Borno, Nigeria—Suspected Boko Haram jihadists detonated a bomb at camp for people displaced by insurgency, killing four and wounding 14.
May 17—Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan — Jamaat-ul-Ahrar (JuA) terrorist group claims responsibility for a suicide bombing that kills one and injures 14.
May 17—North Sinai, Egypt — Sunni hardliners bombed an area, killing one and injuring another.
May 17—Uruzgan, Afghanistan — Taliban kill two civilians.
May 18—Raqqa, Syria — Leftover Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) improvised explosive device (IED) kills two civilians.
May 18—Diyala, Iraq — Suspected ISIS terrorist are behind a bomb blast that kills one and wounds another.
May 18 —Kirkuk, Iraq — Suspected ISIS terrorists kill a member of Kurdish Kakayi minority group with IED.
May 18—Kandahar, Afghanistan — Taliban attacked police security posts, killing five police officers and wounding six others.
May 18—Ghani, Afghanistan — Taliban attacked remote Ajristan district, killing nine security forces and wounding seven others.
May 18—Nangarhar, Afghanistan — Suspected Islamic State terrorists attacked “Ramadan Cup” cricket tournament in Jalalabad, the capital of the group’s stronghold, killing eight and wounding 55.
May 19—Chechnya, Russia — Islamic State claimed responsibility for an attack at church that kills two police officers and a worshipper and also wounds another police officer.

SWEDEN TO RESTART COLLECTION OF STATS LINKING CRIME TO IMMIGRATION, LIBERALS UPSET

Capture

Migrant crisis a hot button issue as September election nears

 | Infowars.com – MAY 9, 2018

Sweden is likely to restart collection of statistics that record the link between migrants and crime for the first time in over a decade as concerns about the country’s violent crime rate and rape problem grow.

“It can now be noted that the demand in the community debate on updated information on the relationship between crime on the one hand and descent and migration on the other hand is so strong that the government needs to reconsider opportunities again,” the Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention (Brå) announced yesterday.

The figures have not been collected since 2005, prompting critics on the right to accuse the government of attempting to cover-up the fact that migrants are vastly over represented in crime statistics to protect multicultural political dogmas.

Some on the left are already crying foul, asserting that there is no reason to collect the statistics.

Criminology professor Henrik Tham is opposed to the move, arguing there are “already studies on the subject,” despite these being 10 years out of date.

Tham also asserts that there is no difference between crime rates of migrants from different countries, although how he would know this without figures actually being collected remains a mystery. Hundreds of thousands of new migrants have arrived in Sweden in the last few years alone.

It is also largely accepted that some migrants, Bosnians for example, integrate better than migrants from the Middle East and North Africa and therefore have lower rates of criminality.

As former veteran police officer Peter Springare revealed, most of the migrants he processed who were responsible for committing violent crimes and rapes were from Iraq, Turkey, Afghanistan, Somalia, or Syria.

As we reported earlier this week, a study by the Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet found that 88 per cent of gang rapists in the Scandinavian country over the last six years have had a migrant background.

Other figures show that migrants from Muslim-majority nations commit 84 per cent of “very violent” rapes in Sweden.

private study of 4,142 rulings regarding sex-related crimes passed by 40 Swedish courts between 2012 and 2014 found that 95.6% of rapes were committed by men of foreign descent.

Two out of three rapes with aggravating circumstances were committed by newly arrived migrants or approved asylum seekers. Official crime statistics show that reported rapes have increased 34% in the last 10 years.

The link between migration and crime is one of the biggest hot button issues in Sweden, where the anti-mass migration Sweden Democrats are expected to perform well in September’s national election.

Theresa May vows to keep funding White Helmets despite alleged Al-Qaeda links (VIDEO)

The Syria Civil Defence, also better known as the White Helmets, Volunteers in the Syria Civil Defence help victims in a a suspected chemical attack. © Syria Civil Defence / Global Look Press

Theresa May has confirmed that the UK will continue to fund the White Helmets, after the US withdrew £200 million ($271 million) in Syrian aid – including money that would go to the controversial group.

During PMQs Labour’s Matthew Pennycook, the Greenwich and Woolwich MP pushed the PM on whether or not she would continue to fund the The White Helmets, officially known as the Syria Civil Defence, a volunteer group that operates in areas controlled by jihadist and Al-Qaeda-linked groups in Syria.

“Despite the ever-present threat of death… the rescue workers of the White Helmets have never stopped saving the lives of their fellow Syrians,” Pennycook said. “Last week the Trump administration froze their US funding.

“With thousands of civilian lives at risk will the prime minister step up, pledge the government to plug the funding shortfall that now exists, and ensure these heroic rescue workers can continue their work?”

READ MORE: US ‘freezes funding’ for White Helmets as group’s Douma chem attack claim falls apart

May did not hesitate in her response, praising the efforts of the non-governmental search-and-rescue organization.

“We recognise the very important and valuable work that the White Helmets are doing,” she said. “They are, as he says, doing this in horrendously difficult conditions. They are incredibly brave to be continuing with that work.”

The UK PM then pledged to review the current financial package for the White Helmets, hinting at further funding down the track. “We do support them, we will continue to support them, and my right honourable friend, the international development secretary will be looking at the level of that support in the future,” May said.

Although the White Helmets say they act solely as a makeshift emergency response team in a time of crisis, claiming to have heroically saved more than 70,000 lives in war-torn Syria, others question its motives. Footage from Syria has repeatedly appeared to show members of the White Helmets assisting jihadist groups, while multiple accounts from civilians suggested they only helped “their own” and use civilians caught up in conflict only for publicity.

Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!

Iran’s top secret nuclear weapons program is revealed by Netanyahu: Israeli PM presents documents that ‘prove Tehran has been hiding its A-bomb ambitions

Israel’s prime minister says that his intelligence services have obtained documents proving that Iran has maintained a secret nuclear program in violation of a landmark agreement Tehran reached with the West. Benjamin Netanyahu gave a televised address on Monday evening during which he presented documents allegedly stolen from inside Iran. Thousands of pages contained evidence that Tehran had a secret nuclear weapons program while insisting to the world its nuclear ambitions were purely peaceful, Netanyahu said. The premier accused the Islamic Republic of ‘brazenly lying’ to the United States and Europe by maintaining nuclear materials in a secret location – a violation of the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. Israel claims that it obtained the incriminating information within the past 10 days. After the 2015 nuclear deal was signed, the documents were moved to a ‘highly secret’ location in Tehran, Netanyahu said.

By Ariel Zilber and Sara Malm for MailOnline

Israel‘s prime minister says that his intelligence services have obtained documents proving that Iran has maintained a secret nuclear program in violation of a landmark agreement Tehran reached with the West.

President Donald Trump used the revelations to insist that he’s been proved ‘100 per cent right’ about Iran, minutes after Benjamin Netanyahu gave a televised address on Monday evening during which he presented documents obtained from inside Iran.

‘Iran’s leaders repeatedly deny ever pursuing nuclear weapons,’ said Netanyahu during a prime-time televised address carried by Israeli networks.

‘Tonight I’m here to tell you one thing: Iran lied.’

Iranian state TV said on Monday that Netanyahu’s accusations on Tehran’s nuclear program was a propaganda.

‘His remarks was not new…full of baseless accusations… and propaganda against Iran’s nuclear work,’ state TV said.

Thousands of pages contained evidence that Tehran had a secret nuclear weapons program while insisting to the world its nuclear ambitions were purely peaceful, Netanyahu said.

While the lion’s share of the briefing focused on what he said was past nuclear work and alleged obfuscation about it by Iran, Netanyahu asserted that such activities had continued after the deal that was meant to curb Iranian capabilities.

The premier accused the Islamic Republic of ‘brazenly lying’ to the United States and Europe by maintaining nuclear materials in a secret location – a violation of the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

Israel claims that it obtained the incriminating information within the past 10 days.

After the 2015 nuclear deal was signed, the documents were moved to a ‘highly secret’ location in Tehran, Netanyahu said.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says that his intelligence services have obtained documents proving that Iran maintained a secret nuclear program in violation of a landmark agreement Tehran reached with the West

Thousands of pages contained evidence that Tehran had a secret nuclear weapons program while insisting to the world its nuclear ambitions were purely peaceful, Netanyahu said

The premier accused the Islamic Republic of ‘brazenly lying’ to the United States and Europe by maintaining nuclear materials in a secret location – a violation of the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action

While the lion’s share of the briefing focused on what he said was past nuclear work and alleged obfuscation about it by Iran, Netanyahu asserted that such activities had continued after the 2015 deal that was meant to curb Iranian capabilities.

‘These files conclusively prove that Iran is brazenly lying when it says it never had a nuclear weapons program,’ he said.

Netanyahu said Israel recently uncovered 55,000 documents and 183 CDs of information from Iran’s ‘nuclear archives.’

Speaking in English, perhaps with an international audience in mind, he says the material is filled with incriminating evidence showing the Iranian program, called ‘Project Amad,’ was to develop a weapon.

While Netanyahu presented the information as new, the details of Project Amad were known to Western governments well before the 2015 nuclear deal, according to The Atlantic.

In 2011, the International Atomic Energy Agency published findings about Project Amad, which was shut down by the Iranians in 2003.

Trump is to decide by May 12 whether to pull out of the international deal with Iran.

Trump said Monday that stunning revelation from Israel about Iran’s secret nuclear weapons program shows that he has had Tehran’s mullah’s pegged.

‘What’s happening today, and what’s happened over the last little while, and what we’ve learned, has really shown that I’ve been 100 per cent right,’ the president told reporters at the White House.

Netanyahu has led calls for Trump to withdraw from the nuclear deal, which was one of Obama’s signature foreign policy achievements.

Netanyahu said that Iran had lied about not pursuing nuclear weapons and had continued to preserve and expand its nuclear weapons knowledge after signing the JCPOA.

‘Iran’s leaders repeatedly deny ever pursuing nuclear weapons,’ said Netanyahu.

‘Tonight I’m here to tell you one thing: Iran lied.’

‘After signing the nuclear deal in 2015, Iran intensified its efforts to hide its secret files,’ he said.

‘In 2017 Iran moved its nuclear weapons files to a highly secret location in Tehran.’

Netanyahu said that Iran continued to preserve and expand its nuclear weapons knowledge for future use.

His speech follows the visit by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo yesterday, during which the pair discussed Iran and the accord.

The Israeli premier has repeatedly called for the accord between world powers and his country’s main enemy to either be altered or scrapped.

The JCPOA – known outside 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue as ‘The Iran Deal’ – called for the U.S. to relax international sanctions and cut loose $150 billion in frozen Iranian funds and assets, in exchange for Tehran’s pledge that it would pare back its nuclear weapons ambitions and limit its ability to enrich uranium and other fissile material.

Netanyahu has long criticized the deal and welcomed the Trump administration’s pledge to withdraw next month if it is not improved.

He has welcomed a pledge by U.S. President Trump to decide on whether to reimpose sanctions on Tehran, putting in peril the 2015 nuclear accord, next month.

Pompeo has warned that the United States will withdraw from the agreement ‘if we can’t fix it’.

The Israeli premier has repeatedly called for the accord between world powers and his country’s main enemy to either be altered or scrapped.

He alleges the agreement does not prevent Iran from eventually obtaining nuclear weapons and says the lifting of sanctions has increased Tehran’s abilityMIKE to finance proxy militants in the Middle East.

Most world powers however say the nuclear deal is working as intended for now and is the best way to keep Iran from acquiring the bomb.

Before Netanyahu’s speech, Iran’s foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, said the Israeli leader was ‘the boy who can’t stop crying wolf [and is] at it again.’

Zarif said on Saturday that demands by Trump to change Tehran’s nuclear deal with world powers were unacceptable.

Trump has said that unless European allies fix the ‘terrible flaws’ in the Iran nuclear deal by May 12, he will refuse to extend US sanctions relief for oil-producing Iran.

Israel is also deeply concerned over Iran’s presence in Syria, where it is backing President Bashar al-Assad’s

Israeli officials have not commented on Monday’s overnight airstrike that killed Iranians inside neighboring Syria, but officials have warned Iran against trying to attack Israeli targets.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said this morning that an overnight missile attack in the country’s northern region has killed 26 pro-government fighters, mostly Iranians.

The negotiators of the Iran deal are seen above in July 2015 in Vienna. From left to right: European Union foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini; Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif; the head of Iran’s atomic energy organization, Ali Akbar Salehi; Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov; British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond; and US Secretary of State John Kerry

The Observatory says the attack appears to have been carried out by Israel and targeted an arms depot for surface-to-surface missiles at a base in northern Syria known as Brigade 47.

Tehran has sent thousands of Iran-backed fighters to back President Bashar Assad’s forces in the country’s seven-year civil war.

Earlier on Monday, Syrian TV reported a ‘new aggression,’ with missiles targeting military outposts in northern Syria.

The state-run television reported that the missiles targeted military outposts in the Hama and Aleppo countryside.  


Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Monday that Iran is keen to develop ties with the rest of the world, which is ‘not merely’ the United States and European countries

Though Iran has yet to respond specifically to Netanyahu’s statements, Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Monday that his country is keen to develop ties with the rest of the world, which is ‘not merely’ the United States and European countries.

‘I don’t believe in cutting ties with the world but relying on the outside of the borders is a mistake within a mistake,’ Khamenei was quoted as saying.

‘We must certainly be wise, smart and resolute in our relations with the world, but we should also know that the world is not merely America and several European countries.

‘The world is big and (we) must have relations with different countries,’ he added, according to extracts of a speech he gave in Tehran published on his website.

Khamenei is also quoted as blasting the US Treasury Department, denouncing it as an ‘economic war chamber against the system of the Islamic republic.’

Since taking office in January 2017, Trump has adopted a tough stance against Iran and repeatedly denounced the landmark nuclear deal which Tehran reached with world powers to curb its nuclear program.

Trump has said the deal – which Iran signed with Britain, France, China, Russia, the United States and Germany – must be ‘fixed’ by May 12 or Washington will walk away.

Most world powers however say the nuclear deal is working as intended for now and is the best way to keep Iran from acquiring the bomb.

During Sunday’s speech, Khamenei also accused the United States of waging an ‘economic and cultural war’ against Iran, according to his website. 

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5674503/Israeli-PM-Netanyahu-says-reveal-dramatic-news-Iran-nuclear-deal.html#ixzz5EBjol7na
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

Cheat, lie and abuse – Danish immigration minister hits out at migrants

Denmark‘s immigration minister, known for her hardline stance on migration, has drawn ire from people on social media after she said that in order to pass language tests, asylum seekers cheat and abuse the trust of authorities.

Minister Inger Stojberg of the ruling center-right Venstre party, cited a Facebook group that provides answers to Danish language and culture tests, which all migrants have to take in the Nordic country. “A significant group” of refugees who have come to Denmark “cheats, lies and abuses our trust,” she wrote in an editorial in BT, a Danish tabloid newspaper.

‘Locking up foreigners’: Human rights activists slam new immigration bill in France

Another problem that Stojberg highlighted is the age of so-called minors among migrants, many of whom are believed to be grown men posing as adolescents. “We also see young people under the age of 18 who cheat their way into getting better treatment and more benefits,” she stated, stressing that an unaccompanied minor costs over 500,000 kroner ($80,000) per year for the state. “In fact, two thirds of those whom we later age-tested proved to be older than they originally stated,” she added.

Screen Shot 2018-04-26 at 11.17.32 AM

Stojberg’s remarks, which she also posted on her Facebook page, have caused an online controversy, with people saying that it is the Danish immigration minister who “cheats and abuses the Danish people’s trust.”“You are a sad example of Denmark’s idea and understanding of integration,” one person wrote, while another stated that Stojberg’s rhetoric criminalizes people “who happen to come from another country and are on the run.”

According to recent data from the Refugees.dk website, over 3,000 people applied for asylum in Denmark last year, which is a “steep fall” since spring 2016. All in all, in the past three years, some 30,000 arrived to seek refuge in the Nordic nation. Syrians, Eritreans and Afghans made up the largest part of the asylum seekers.

Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!

Twitter bots are bad…unless they’re pushing the ‘right’ narrative?

See the source image

In what should be a source of embarrassment to the British government and the journalists who parroted it, a number of prominent Twitter users have recently been accused of being automated Russian bots rather than real humans.

Two of these government-identified “bots” are the accounts @Ian56789 and @Partisangirl — and they are in fact definitely not bots, but real live people. In the case of @Partisangirl, whose real name is Maram Susli, any three-year old could have figured out that she is a real person simply by viewing the multiple videos and interviews she has posted online in recent years.

But Guardian journalist Heather Stewart didn’t do that. Instead she unquestioningly reported the ‘news’ that Susli is a bot.

Capture

Challenged on Twitter, all Stewart could say in her defense was that it was the government’s analysis, not her own. Given that the government’s ‘analysis’ is very clearly completely wrong, one would think that Stewart might want to correct her story to reflect that fact, but she has not bothered to do so.

READ MORE: ‘I’ve seen the censorship’: Syrian blogger tells RT how she was labeled a ‘Russian bot’ (VIDEO)

The other user accused of being a bot by the British government, @Ian56789, whose real name is Ian Shilling, has given an interview to Sky News, which also makes abundantly clear that he is a human, not a Russian bot. Stewart has not updated her story to include that information either — and both Susli and Shilling are still identified only as “bots” in her story.

Attacks on @Partisangirl are not new. For years, she has fought off allegations from prominent Western analysts that she is not real, or that if she is, she has had plastic surgery. In 2014, Susli tried to prove she had not had cosmetic surgery by posting a photograph of herself as a child. Responding to the photo of the very young Susli, senior editor at the Daily Beast and CNN analyst Michael Weiss said it looked like her parents raised her as a “streetwalker”.

Capture

In 2013, Phillip Smyth, who is a ‘Soref Fellow’ at the Washington Institute —   a D.C.-based think tank which focuses on foreign policy analysis — attacked Susli for her looks, twice accusing her of having plastic surgery. In one tweet, Smyth said the “plastic surgery guy” who “fixed her up” didn’t do a good jo b. Ironically, some time after Smyth posted an article about how men who abuse women online are “literally losers”.

Capture

This wouldn’t be the first time Western news outlets and analysts have falsely accused Twitter users of being bots in the employ of the Russian government, either. Last year, the crowdfunded website Byline published “analysis” suggesting that the account @didgery77332nd, which used the nickname “Smoo” was a “foreign-based troll pushing Russian messaging.”

That Russian “troll” turned out to be a security guard from Glasgow. “Smoo has been my nickname since I was six years old. It’s not difficult to track me down. People might not agree with my opinions, but that doesn’t make me a Russian troll,” he told The Scotsman newspaper.

Another Twitter user in the firing line for her “pro-Russia” views is @sahouraxo which uses the name Sarah Abdallah. It is true that little is known about Abdallah outside of her very popular Twitter account, but that does not necessarily mean she is a bot. Although without more information to go on, it’s impossible to say she is who she says she is, either. The BBC has questioned Abdallah’s authenticity and highlighted her as one of the most influential Twitter accounts on the Syrian war.

Former Middle East editor of the Guardian Brian Whitaker has recently attempted to expose Abdallah and her possible “connections” to Hezbollah. But perhaps he is just trying to make up for past mistakes.

In 2011, Whitaker was quick to promote the ‘Gay Girl in Damascus’ blog.

 Capture

The blog was ostensibly run by a Syrian girl named Amina Arraf who documented her struggles as a gay person in Syria. At one point, ‘Amina’ was even kidnaped by Syrian security forces, worrying gay rights activists everywhere. Whitaker and many others were tricked into believing Amina was a real person. In reality, it turned out that she was an entirely fakepersona and ‘her’ blog was run by a 40 year-old straight man from Edinburgh named Tom MacMaster.

When McMaster was found out, the Guardian wrote that the hoax “exposes the power and the unreliability of the internet” — and yet seven years later, the mainstream media spends more of its time attacking real bloggers than it does trying to expose the real “unreliability” of the internet.

For instance, mainstream outlets are happy to parrot blogger Eliot Higgins who publishes ‘analysis’ on chemical weapons attacks in Syria from the comfort of his home in England. Higgins produces “evidence” of war crimes from his couch and is held up as a hero by Western pundits and activists.

Similarly, activists from the pro-regime change White Helmets ‘rescue organization’ are always just around the corner when they need to film the aftermath of a chemical attack and lobby for regime change in front of Western audiences. The group, which is the subject of an Oscar-winning documentary and proclaims itself to be “neutral” and impartial, has been exposed by investigative journalists for its links to Jabhat al-Nusra — Al Qaeda’s Syria affiliate.

Members of the White Helmets have been filmed assisting in public executions, helping militants discard the bodies of Syrian soldiers in dumpsters, posing while standing on top of piles of dead bodies and waving Jabhat al-Nusra’s flag while brandishing weapons.

But Susli, an Australia-based Syrian girl with a large Twitter following is the real threat?

US still paying White Helmets despite $200mn-aid freeze for Syria recovery, State Dept confirms

As the US is reviewing funding aimed at helping war-ravaged Syria rebuild, it’s not neglecting the White Helmets – a controversial militant-linked group instrumental to the media campaign against Assad and Russia.

At a Thursday press briefing, journalists asked US State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert for an update on the late-March freeze of $200 million earmarked for the recovery of Syria – and if that means Washington will be withholding payments to the White Helmets.

Nauert opened her response with a gushing comment about the organization. “We recognize and appreciate and are very grateful for all the work that the White Helmets continues to do on behalf of the people of their country and on behalf of the US Government and all the coalition forces. They’re doing incredible work in rescuing in some cases, and in other cases it’s recovery efforts. They’re an incredible group of individuals,” she said.

Moreover, she said she “just exchanged emails with them the other day.” Finally cornered into giving a direct answer, she said “As far as I’m aware, all of the work still continues. Peoples’ bills are still being paid.”

The White Helmets (officially called the Syria Civil Defense), a supposedly impartial humanitarian NGO, make no secret of who pays those bills, listing the governments of the UK, Germany, and the US among others on their website. Time and again their reports from the scenes of supposed crimes against civilians by the forces of Syrian President Bashar Assad – who Washington has wanted toppled for years – have been used to justify accusations against Assad and his ally Russia. This includes the latest alleged chemical incident in Douma near Damascus, which led to a series of missile strikes by the US, UK, and France.

These allegations have now been contradicted by multiple sources, including witnesses from the scene, and even people featured in the White Helmets’ video of the “aftermath” of the “attack.”

The White Helmets rely heavily on positive publicity. They have been featured in two documentaries, one of which won an Oscar in the heavily politicized 2017 ceremony.

A recent attempt at gaining publicity and support for their cause, however, fizzled spectacularly. English singer Roger Waters, a founder of Pink Floyd, stopped his Barcelona gig for a minute last week to mention that a representative of the White Helmets wanted to come up on stage and make a statement. However, Waters had a few words of his own to say.

“The White Helmets is a fake organization that exists only to create propaganda for jihadists and terrorists,” he said.

It later turned out that in 2016, the NGO emailed Waters, trying to entice him into a dinner honoring the White Helmets, paid for by a Saudi billionaire. And just days before last week’s concert, a journalist describing himself as “a militant with the Syrian White Helmets” asked Waters for stage time to “send a message to the children of Syria.”

Waters replied to neither email, instead choosing to make his beliefs heard publicly.

“If we were to listen to the propaganda of the White Helmets and others, we would be encouraged to encourage our governments to start dropping bombs on people in Syria,” he said.

Which is exactly what happened a few hours later.