A 3 minute google search five years ago brought up many sites (and blogs) that suggested that ISIS was a made-to-order terrorist group set up by the U.S., Israel, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Qatar … but it was all speculation. Hard facts were hard to come by. But those on the ‘ground’ knew. Others rejected it as simplistic, conspiratorial propaganda!
Now, as the war in Syria continues to slow down, we have a new source of solid information about the want went down!
Qatar and Saudi Arabia are in a pissing match, with each side accusing the other of funding ISIS and al-Qaeda terrorists (ironically, both true), we are finally getting actual dirt and details on how these Arab monarchies on the Southern side of the Persian Gulf have been funding jihadist movements in places like Syria, Iraq, and Libya for years!
Out of the blue, we had a top Qatari government official, no less than former Prime Minister Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber al-Thani, who oversaw Syria operations on behalf of Qatar until 2013 (also as foreign minister), with all the beans in hand, to spill this past week.
The following is a direct excerpt from an article on the website Zero Hedge:
In an interview with Qatari TV this past Wednesday, bin Jaber al-Thani revealed that his country, alongside Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and the United States, began shipping weapons to jihadists from the very moment events “first started” (in 2011).
“Al-Thani likened the covert operation to “hunting prey” – the prey being President Assad and his supporters – “prey” which he admits got away (as Assad is still in power; he used a Gulf Arabic dialect word, “al-sayda”, which implies hunting animals or prey for sport). Though Thani denied credible allegations of support for ISIS, the former prime minister’s words implied direct Gulf and US support for al-Qaeda in Syria (al-Nusra Front) from the earliest years of the war, and even said Qatar has “full documents” and records proving that the war was planned to effect regime change.
Al-Thani went further and acknowledged that Qatar and its neighbors were arming jihadists in Syria with the full approval and support of US and Turkey: “I don’t want to go into details, but we have full documents about us taking charge [in Syria].” He claimed that both Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah (who reigned until his death in 2015) and the United States placed Qatar in a lead role concerning covert operations to execute the proxy war.”
While very revealing, these comments were intended to fend off accusations from others (notably Saudi Arabia and the U.S.) for Qatar’s involvement with Al Qaeda and ISIS; and meant to suggest that Qatar is being left, “holding the bag” for others. Al-Thani futher explained that Qatar continued its financing of armed insurgents in Syria while other countries eventually wound down large-scale support, which is why he lashed out at the US and the Saudis, who initially “were with us in the same trench.”
In a previous US television interview with Charlie Rose Al Thani was asked about allegations of Qatar’s support for terrorism, and he replied that “in Syria, everybody did mistakes, including your country.” And said that when the war began in Syria, “all of use worked through two operation rooms: one in Jordan and one in Turkey.
Here is an actual transcript of his interview in English.
“When the events first started in Syria I went to Saudi Arabia and met with King Abdullah. I did that on the instructions of his highness the prince, my father. He [Abdullah] said we are behind you. You go ahead with this plan and we will coordinate but you should be in charge. I won’t get into details but we have full documents and anything that was sent [to Syria] would go to Turkey and was in coordination with the US forces and everything was distributed via the Turks and the US forces. And us and everyone else was involved, the military people. There may have been mistakes and support was given to the wrong faction… Maybe there was a relationship with Nusra, its possible but I myself don’t know about this… we were fighting over the prey [“al-sayda”] and now the prey is gone and we are still fighting… and now Bashar is still there. You [US and Saudi Arabia] were with us in the same trench… I have no objection to one changing if he finds that he was wrong, but at least inform your partner… for example leave Bashar [al-Assad] or do this or that, but the situation that has been created now will never allow any progress in the GCC [Gulf Cooperation Council], or any progress on anything if we continue to openly fight.”
Given Qatar’s extremely close relationship with Britain; it is unlikely that Qatar would have undertaken this level of engagement with ISIS and Al Qaeda without direct British support and approval. It is also therefore a certainty that Britain too was a partner in this scheme.
As is now well-known, the CIA was directly involved in leading regime change efforts in Syria with allied gulf partners, as leaked and declassified US intelligence memos confirm. The US government understood in real time that Gulf and West-supplied advanced weaponry was going to al-Qaeda and ISIS, despite official claims of arming so-called “moderate” rebels. For example, a leaked 2014 intelligence memo sent to Hillary Clinton acknowledged Qatari and Saudi support for ISIS.
The email stated in direct and unambiguous language that:
“the governments of Qatar and Saudi Arabia, which are providing clandestine financial and logistic support to ISIL and other radical Sunni groups in the region.”
Furthermore, one day before Prime Minister Thani’s interview, The Intercept released a new top-secret NSA document unearthed from leaked intelligence files provided by Edward Snowden which show in stunning clarity that the armed opposition in Syria was under the direct command of foreign governments from the early years of the war which has now claimed half a million lives.
The newly released NSA document confirms that a 2013 insurgent attack with advanced surface-to-surface rockets upon civilian areas of Damascus, including Damascus International Airport, was directly supplied and commanded by Saudi Arabia with full prior awareness of US intelligence. As the former Qatari prime minister now also confirms, both the Saudis and US government staffed “operations rooms” overseeing such heinous attacks during the time period of the 2013 Damascus airport attack.
No doubt there remains a massive trove of damning documentary evidence which will continue to trickle out in the coming months and years. At the very least, the continuing Qatari-Saudi diplomatic war will bear more fruit as each side builds a case against the other with charges of supporting terrorism. And as we can see from this latest Qatari TV interview, the United States itself will not be spared by their staunch ally in this new pen season of airing dirty laundry as old allies turn on each other.
The sub-text to all this, is that perhaps there is not only an ongoing feud between Qatar and Saudi Arabia, but also between the U.S. and Britain. Underneath all this there surely is a major strategic disagreement; with Iran at the heart of it all. Qatar after all, is now being punished for talking directly to Iran (as all Iranians know, the Mullahs in Iran, are British assets too).
There is evidence to suggest that once the game in Syria changed, and Iran signed the JCPOA, the Brits shifted their regional strategy in a completely different direction. Readers should note that Britain controls the largest and most significant oil and gas fields in Iraq (they took all the spoils of war – not the U.S.)! Britain controls oil and gas fields in Qatar and Bahrain. Very soon, all that oil and gas (from Iraq, Bahrain, and Qatar … as well as Iran) will find its way to Western Europe, China and India… via a pipeline grid in Iran and Turkey! Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia and Israel will be mulling over how to put a pipe under the Mediterranean through Cyprus and Greece. Fast growing markets in Asia will not be accessible to them!
It seems Britain (and its regional puppets) are charting a completely independent path for themselves… leaving the U.S., Israel, and Saudi Arabia in the dust! Will they succeed?
Meanwhile, of course, we have 4 million Syrian refugees in Camps; 500,000 Syrians dead, and complete cities like Aleppo, Raqaa, Mosul … to name a few completely decimated. I really don’t understand how people like Al Thani sleep at night!