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Syrian Government Sarin Gas Attack Scenario Impossible - Suggests New Study By MIT Professor & Former UN Weapons Inspector: Rockets Used Couldn't Travel Required Distance

Diagram of Improvised Chemical Artillery Rocket
(Click on image to view full size)
Diagram of Improvised Chemical Artillery Rocket from UN Report of September 18, 2013.
The study demonstrates that such rockets were not capable of traveling beyond 2km and
could not have been fired from distances claimed by the United States. (Source)
A new study could be the final nail in coffin of the 'Syria did it' scenario advanced by the US, the Syrian rebels, and others.

The study, titled Possible Implications of Faulty US Technical Intelligence in the Damascus Nerve Agent Attack of August 21, 2013, argues that the rockets used in the sarin gas attack could not travel beyond 2km and thus could not have been fired from areas controlled by the Syrian regime.

The results were made public on January 14, 2014, and the study was co-authored by Richard Lloyd, former UN Weapons Inspector now with Tesla Laboratories in Arlington, VA, and Theodore A. Postol, Professor of Science, Technology, and National Security Policy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The study was done under the auspices of the MIT Science, Technology, and Global Security Working Group.

White House map showing areas controlled by  the Syrian government
(Click on image to view full size)
White House map published on August 30, 2013 showing areas controlled by the Syrian
government. (Source)

Lloyd and Postol provide a list of their "Main Policy Issues":
  • The Syrian Improvised Chemical Munitions that Were Used in the August 21,
    Nerve Agent Attack in Damascus Have a Range of About 2 Kilometers.
     
  • The UN Independent Assessment of the Range of the Chemical Munition Is in
    Exact Agreement with Our Findings.
     
  • This Indicates That These Munitions Could Not Possibly Have Been Fired at
    East Ghouta from the “Heart”, or from the Eastern Edge, of the Syrian
    Government Controlled Area Shown in the Intelligence Map Published by the
    White House on August 30, 2013.
     
  • This mistaken Intelligence Could Have Led to an Unjustified US Military
    Action Based on False Intelligence
     
  • A Proper Vetting of the Fact That the Munition Was of Such Short Range
    Would Have Led to a Completely Different Assessment of the Situation from
    the Gathered Data.
     
  • Whatever the Reasons for the Egregious Errors in the Intelligence, the Source
    of These Errors Needs to Be Explained.
     
  • If the Source of These Errors Is Not Identified, the Procedures that Led to this
    Intelligence Failure Will Go Uncorrected, and the Chances of a Future Policy
    Disaster Will Grow With Certainty.

The study includes testimony from Secretary of State John Kerry in which he argues that the United States was in possession of incontrovertible evidence (satellite detection, physical evidence, etc.) that the sarin gas ladened rockets were fired from areas controlled by the Syrian regime . The so-called "Syrian government gas attack" was to be the justification for a massive missile attack against regime forces, equipment, and installations. Maps published by the White House that were used to demonstrate "where the missiles were fired from" are reprinted.


White House map showing areas controlled by the Syrian government
Diagram: Calculations of rocket range
(Click on images to view full size)
Top: White House map published on August 30, 2013 showing government controlled
area and ring of maximum ranges from where chemical munitions could have been
launched. Bottom: Differences in the flight trajectory of baseline chemical munitions
due to uncertainties in weight, propellant loading, and aerodynamic drag. (Source)

The authors of the study conclude that the Syrian regime could not have been responsible for the gas attack and the evidence they offer could be the final nail in the coffin of the "Syrian government did it" conspiracy theory advanced by Western nations and their allies.

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