The British Foreign Secretary William Hague has said that the United Kingdom promises to increase its support for the armed gangs fighting the Syrian government.
Hague made the remarks at a joint press conference with the United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in London.
The British government has already joined other Western countries in backing the groups of taking up arms against the government of President Bashar al-Assad.
Meanwhile, Turkey has set up a secret base near the Syrian border to send military and communications supplies to armed groups fighting against the government of President Bashar al-Assad.
According to a Qatari source, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar are sending weapons and communications equipment for Syrian rebels via the base, which is located in the southern Turkish city of Adana, about one hundred kilometers from Syria’s border, Reuters reported on Friday.
According to the source, the base was set up after Saudi Deputy Foreign Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Abdullah al-Saud visited Turkey and requested it.
Press TV has conducted an interview with Webster Griffin Tarpley, author and historian, to further discuss the issue. The following is an approximate transcript of the interview.
Press TV: First of all I like to get your opinion on how significant do you think is this directed mission being made by Hague that Britain is backing armed groups in Syria and that it is ready to step up its support for them?
Tarpley: Well he really had no choice. We had the Reuters news agency 24 to 36 hours ago publishing the report that you referred to about the Adana base supported actively by Saudi Arabia, Qatar and of course on Turkish territory.
This base was actually made to order during a visit by Saudi Prince Abdulaziz, the Deputy Foreign Minister who demanded that the Turks open up such a base. The trick with that base is Adana is right next to the Incirlik NATO air force base. It is Incirlik AFB and the account in Reuters is not certain whether the Adana logistical base for the death squads in Syria is actually on the NATO base. So at that point it is getting very hard to deny anything.
I think we have to look at the behavior not just of the British but also of Turkey which has been I think breathtaking irresponsible examples of real folly in the last couple of days. Erdogan, the leader of the country made a speech yesterday where he threatened the Syrians with hot pursuit. If PKK Kurdish elements from Northern Syria raid into Turkey then he is going to follow them back into Syria.
He needs to be reminded that the great principle of international relations is reciprocity and right now with that base that we have just heard about Turkey is actually sending terror teams into Syria and when they go back to Adana and then they would be subject also to hot pursuit which would include that NATO base.
The Turks have tried to cover themselves in the last days or two by saying that they are sealing their border but we have a very informative article here in the Washington Post a day or two ago where we find out that the Turks are only referring to the official border crossings and they have got a whole set of other semi-official border crossings which are actually run by the Turkish army where the Guerilla fighters and terrorists are being allowed to pass in both directions.
Press TV: Well that is an interesting point you made, the involvement of Turkey throughout what is happening in Syria. Now Turkey has set up a secret base, a nerve-center so to speak, which directly is sort of a route between mercenaries being sent by Saudi Arabia and Qatar into Syria? Now how do you think, what kind of a precedent is Turkey setting by undermining its own national security for the sake of NATO’s own ultimate objectives?
Tarpley: Well the old Greek proverb is “whom the gods would destroy, they first drive mad” usually with hubris, excessive pride, overweening ambition and that seems to apply to Erdogan and unfortunately also Davutoglu. They have also got other problems though, they have got not only Syria and the Kurds but then there is also Russia.
I think the big development of the last week or so is this landmark statement by Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov that the United States policy is to justify terrorism. The US justifies terrorism and says Lavrov the US negotiating pasture from Susan Rice at the United Nations is essentially the United States will continue to support terrorism until the Security Council does what the US and NATO want and Lavrov deplored that position.
This is a very important moment I think in terms of clarifying what is going on. It seems to me now that it would be in order to follow up on that some kind of resolution in the Security Council or the General Assembly at the very least, condemning the United States for supporting terrorism in the person of al-Qaeda as you mentioned before.
This has now gone so far that a whole country is in crisis in Europe and it is Germany as your account mentioned the BND, the Bundesnachrichtendienst has pointed to the overwhelming presence of al-Qaeda and you have got the Frankfurter Allgemeine, Die Welt and Bild-Zeitung, one of the biggest tabloids in Europe, all of them are taking I think important steps to show that the massacres in Syria are actually the handiwork of the anti-Assad forces, that is not the army and Assad who are doing these killings but it is the opposition and they do it with the desire to provoke a foreign intervention and in that regard we are told a lot about Aleppo.
Press TV: Well speaking of which Dr. Tarpley, let me just cut in there, the massacre that took place in Houla, there are reports now by German intelligence services that it was carried out by al-Qaeda. They have also admitted that numerous al-Qaeda attacks have taken place in Syria which have been blamed on Syrian security forces. Again the US is speaking of a massacre set to take place in Aleppo which is again reminiscent of what took place in Houla.
Now speaking of which, these countries are putting in as much as they can when it comes to Syria even their own integrity in the international arena. Do they even have a plan B if things don’t work out the way they have planned?
Tarpley: Well their plan B is constricted in the sense that they fear possible retaliation from Putin and Russia and to some extent from China. They also fear the anti-aircraft systems, the SAMs, the surface to air missiles that are in the hands of Syria.
So their goal up to now has been to try to do this with Special Forces and sending in swarms of terrorist Guerilla fighters but that has not worked over the many months and in the past week to ten days the great escalation and the numbers that I have heard range from two to three thousand foreign fighters to tens of thousands of foreign fighters who were expected to swarm the main cities of Syria at the same time that the assassinations took place last Wednesday.
Well that did not work. The Syrian army did not collapse, the Syrian state was not decapitated and in Damascus and now in Aleppo those foreign fighters must realize that they cannot hold the positions that they have taken and if they try to stay there it is going to go very, very badly for them.
I would just point out Corriere Della Sera, big Milan newspaper, most important newspaper of record in Italy already on Thursday evening, last evening here in Washington said that the rebels have left Aleppo, they are fleeing towards the Turkish border and the only people left are the citizens of Aleppo.
Now then the New Yorker magazine correspondent who seems to speak for the US intelligence community says the opposite, the residents have fled and only people left are the fighters.
In either case you are absolutely right. Nobody should believe Hillary Clinton, Susan Rice, Victoria Nuland, these people discredited as they are lying as they have done the whole time. Any report of a massacre in Aleppo would have to be taken with a great deal of skepticism.