In an article in the Jerusalem Post British MP George Galloway accuses Israel of being complicit in any alleged chemical attack in Syria last week. The JP report said "British MP and veteran anti-Israel activist George Galloway on Wednesday responded to the latest alleged chemical weapons attack in Syria, stating that if there has been any use of sarin gas, it was radical Islamist group al-Qaida, using gas supplied by Israel."
Sounds far-fetched but does it sound impossible? Sadly not anymore. We know that as the crisis in Syria deepens western concern does not completely centre on Syrians. Instead it includes concerns about the destabilized world region of the middle east, western peace and Israel.
Monday UN inspectors making their way to the alleged chemical weapons attack site were shot at by snipers. Who fired the shots is of course crucial. The West continues to blame the Assad regime, the regime blame the rebels. It could also be any number of small breakaway factions running amok in Syria.
In March there were reports that rebels had captured and executed forces loyal to Assad. On May 14 this writer posted an article about Syrian rebel Abu Sakkar taking a bite from the heart of a dead government soldier. The incident was widely condemned but attempts were made to justify it by others.
However, no matter what has been going on in Syria is there any justification for such an act? We think not. It goes against all conventions and rules of engagement. Imagine the outcry if the victim was a UK or US soldier?
As western leaders take the last few thoughtful breaths before committing to action against Syria just who are the rebels, or as the west likes to call them, the opposition?
In June 2012 Alex Thomson, chief correspondent for Channel 4 News, in the UK, reported one of many worrying incidents happening in Syria.
With reporting restrictions in Syria journalists were working undercover with the aid of the rebels. Alex and his co-travellers were returning to the safety of government lines, in the Syrian town of Qusair, when they were attacked. The rebels leading them pretended to lead the party to safety but in truth they were leading them into a free-fire zone in the hope that the regime would maim or kill them. This it was hoped would fuel the West's belief that the Assad regime were killing all and sundry.
On a Channel 4 blogspot Alex wrote, "I'm quite clear the rebels deliberately set us up to be shot by the Syrian army."
On June 10, 2012, Russia Today claimed that the Syrian rebels now had a supply of chemical weapons. The chemical weapons were believed to have originally belonged to Libya. The claim was that the Syrian rebels planned to use the weapons against the Syrian people attaching blame to the Assad regime.
The allegations, some nonsensical, some the truth, pose the west a real problem, or at least they should.
With the question of whether the USA was gun-running through its Libyan embassy, prior the killing of ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans, unanswered, do we really have any real idea of what is going on in Syria, who is pulling the strings and most importanly who the rebels are?
To quote Butch Cassidy, "Who are these guys?"
Just who is George Galloway?
George Galloway is a Scottish veteran politician in the UK who has never shied away from controversial and contentious subjects. He is oft derided by the mainstream media and politicians but he does talk a great deal of sense at times. Watch any episode of the UK's BBC Question Time involving George to experience heated but often sensible debate. In 2001 the Spectator awarded him the Debater of the Year award.
He could of course just be a good speaker who is clever with words but many times it would be difficult not to see the logic of his stance. He is a former Labour party politician, now the leader of the Respect party in the UK, which was formed out of an anti-war campaign in Britain.
He is the elected MP for Bradford West, a UK northern city with a very mixed race population. George was banned from entering Canada in 2009 on the grounds that his entry would endanger national security. He has been in hot water many times but remains a principled individual.