Huffington Post Uncritically Trumpets Obama-Republican Big Lie About the Syrian War

By Eric Zuesse

On April 20th, Sabrina Siddiqui headlined at Huffington Post, “Bob Corker: ‘Assad Was Wise’ To Kill 1,200 With Chemical Weapons And ‘Embarrass’ The U.S.” She didn’t challenge the veracity of the Obama Administration’s (and Republican Senator Corker’s) charge that the sarin gas attack came from Assad’s forces instead of from jihadist rebels who were trying to oust Assad. But, evil though Assad is, that charge against him is a lie, which was definitively nailed down as such, by Seymour Hersh, on April 4th headlining at the London Review of Books“The Red Line and the Rat Line: Seymour Hersh on Obama, Erdogan, and the Syrian Rebels.” The gas attack was perpetrated by Turkish Prime Minister Recip Erdogan’s allies the jihadist al-Nusra rebels, who are allied in Syria with Al Qaeda, against Assad.

Earlier reports that had raised questions about Obama’s lies on this matter were “George Washington” headlining 17 January 2014 at his blog, “Weapons Inspectors: Syrian Chemical Weapons Fired from Rebel-Held Territory”; Robert Parry at Consortium News on 23 December 2013, headlining, “UN Investigator Undercuts NYT on Syria”; and, even earlier, Matthew Schofield at McClatchy Newspapers on 21 August 2013, headlining, “New Analysis of Rocket Used in Syria Chemical Attack Undercuts U.S. Claims.” The U.S. major “news” media have played along with the Obama lies on this (as on some other matters), just as they did with George W. Bush’s lies about “Saddam’s WMD” that didn’t even exist, and that hadn’t existed since 1998 when they were all destroyed (as I documented in my 2004 book, Iraq War: The Truth).

Actually, Michael Calderone at HuffPo had headlined on 8 December 2013, “New Yorker, Washington Post Passed On [i.e. Rejected] Seymour Hersh Syria Report.” So, HuffPo had itself reported the major media’s complicity with Obama’s now-dubious claim, before HuffPo resumed spreading that lie on April 20th, even weeks after Hersh had finally nailed it down. However, back at that time, in December, the Hersh charge hadn’t yet been nailed down. It was first reported by Hersh on 8 December 2013, also in LRB, under the headline “Whose Sarin?” But then it was only a question, not yet an answer.

Not until Hersh’s subsequent 4 April 2014 report, “The Red Line and the Rat Line,” was it actually nailed down, as an Obama-Republican lie.

The performance of the U.S. news-media regarding the Obama Administration’s lie concerning this matter is no better than was their performance in the lead-up to the invasion of Iraq in 2003. And, similarly, the U.S. major “news” (or propaganda) media are carrying water for the Administration on Ukraine. (For that issue, see the links ending this article.)


Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of  They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010,  and of  CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.

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  • Name

    I could never understand why people who claim that the government or media are lying about something insert an “of course so-and-so is an evil dictator” into the discussion when the only evidence of evilness comes from the same parties they’re accusing of lying.

  • mmckinl

    The Huffington Post is the R2P half of the War Party. Obama has now killed the Peace Movement shilling “responsibility to protect” dogma to gullible liberals. There are real threats ahead as the R2P left has joined the Neocons to push for more interventions. It is only the anti-war left still left and true libertarians that are fighting the insanity of the Beltway.

    • Man on the street

      It use to be the conservatives were the party of wars, but now, the liberals also are happy to waste our money & soldiers to mess around with any country that Israel or Saudi Arabia wants to beat up. Washington is an occupied territory by Saudis, and Israelis. Unfortunately for Syria, both countries like to beat on Assad.

      • mmckinl

        Not quite …

        W. Wilson ~ WWI

        FDR ~ WWII

        H. Truman ~ Korea

        Kennedy-Johnson ~ Vietnam War

        Dems have along history of war … In fact the Taft Republicans from 1908 – 1948 were a decidedly isolationist anti war party …

        That all changed with Reagan and his small wars in Latin America … The Republicans have since been a party of “regime change” …

  • This tells me Huffington Post is now officially part of the mainstream media.