The war on Syria has never been a civil war, although there has always been a small minority of Syrians who have engaged in the war, betraying their country to NATO and the Persian Gulf monarchies.
In an interview with Khamenei.ir, Professor Tim Anderson, a distinguished author and senior lecturer of political economy at the University of Sydney, Australia answers questions about the Syrian crisis, the Axis of Resistance and the UN's role is settling the conflicts in the Middle East. The following is the full text of the interview:
What would Syria look like if Iran hadn’t supported the Syrian people against Takfiri terrorists?
The resistance in Syria is due to its own unity and to its strong friends, and first amongst those friends is the Islamic Republic of Iran.
The relationship between Syria and Iran is remarkable in that both are such different nation-states, yet the bonds are close.
Nothing has shaken that close relationship in the 37 years since the Iranian Revolution.
Iran, as senior partner, does not try to dominate Syria in the manner of a western power;
Iran's respect for Syrian leadership of Syrian affairs is evident.
Yet Iran's support has been critical during the recent sustained attacks on Syria.
As an observer I am not privy to all the detail of agreements between the two countries, but I have seen evidence of the political, cultural, media, military training, advice, logistic and humanitarian support that Iran has provided Syria, in recent years.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has drawn attention to the fundamental importance of Iran, in the defence of Syria.
While the resistance of the Syrian people and the Syrian Army remains central, the support of Iran is a key to the survival of Syria as a nation, and to the fact that this nation has not disintegrated into the disastrous chaos we now see in Libya.
How do the Saudi and Israeli regimes benefit from the crisis in Syria?
The Saudis and Israel hope to benefit by breaking the central link in the Axis of Resistance, isolating Palestine and Hezbollah from Iran.
That is why they back all the sectarian mercenary groups, whatever their names.
Unfortunately for them, and despite all the slaughter, they have helped drive Iraq into that same Axis of Resistance.
Turkish Prime Minister claimed “Turkey will not allow cooperation with terrorist organizations in Syria”; what’s your take on his remark?
This is simply double-speak. The current government of Turkey remains a key sponsor of the terrorism in both Syria and Iraq.
Russia helped expose that, particularly clearly, late last year, when they charted the DAESH oil traffic into Turkey, and the free flow of terrorists across the border into Syria. The world knows that the Erdogan government backs terrorists in Syria.
Western media insists on calling the war on Syria as ‘civil war’; would that be the right term to describe the situation in Syria? Why or why not?
The war on Syria has never been a civil war, although there has always been a small minority of Syrians who have engaged in the war, betraying their country to NATO and the Persian Gulf monarchies. The key forces against Syria since 2011 have been Washington and its regional allies, the Saudis, Qatar, Turkey and Israel, with support from some others including Jordan, Canada, the UK and France.
France has deployed Special Forces in northern Syria to advise the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF); what’s your take on that and how do you think the French government fuels the destabilization of Syria?
French special forces are only used in Syria because France seeks some influence in the political outcome in Syria, a move in breach of the Charter of the United Nations and specifically contrary to UNSC resolution 2254, which they pretended to support.
The aggression from France is particularly disgraceful, as it was Syria's former colonial master. The whole world rejected colonialism, more than 50 years ago.
Much Syrian blood was shed to eject France from Syria, between the 1920 and the 1940s. But there is little sign of French contrition today.
Now, despite the cultural links and the 'blow back' terrorism that affects France, the French Government appears to share the western neo-colonial illusion that, if Syria cannot be overthrown, it might be partitioned.
How do you assess the role of United Nations and white helmets in Syrian crisis?
These are two distinct things.
The United Nations has been unable to prevent war (the main reason for its creation), indeed to prevent a series of wars of aggression, in the Middle East.
This is because the imperial powers still dominate that body. The rise of 'southern' groups like BRICS has not yet been able to overcome that dominance.
International law is clear in support of Syrian sovereignty and against foreign aggression, but the Euro-American dominated UN has struggled to defend international law.
The 'White Helmets' are a Wall Street creation, funded and led by the US and the UK, to give 'humanitarian' cover to the al Qaeda groups they support.
This fake NGO participates directly in the sectarian terrorist campaigns, helping with the war propaganda that terrorist fighters are 'civilians', in an attempt to de-legitimize the resistance of the Syrian Army and its allies. This short video explains a lot about The White Helmets:
Why do you believe you have been removed as the keynote speaker in the upcoming Refugees conference?
I was invited to that conference in Greece specifically to talk about the links between the War on Syria and the refugee crisis in Europe.
However there was a campaign against me by British supporters of the NATO-backed fake 'revolution' in Syria.
These people back greater western military intervention in Syria; many call themselves 'leftists' and even 'anti-imperialists'.
That well illustrates the level of confusion we have in western societies.
That pressure pushed the Greek organizers of the conference to 'de-invite' me as a keynote speaker, but they agreed I should present a paper at the conference.
This incident is a good example of how western debates over the war on Syria are constantly censored, blocked or limited.
We have a long way to go in decolonizing the western mind.