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The Sunni – Shiite Split Is Being Used To Divide Syrians: Dean Henderson

Interview by Kourosh Ziabari

01 August, 2013

American columnist and environmental activist believes that the Western powers are using the religious and ethnic diversity in Syria to create a deep and long-life sectarian conflict in the Arab country.

“The Sunni/Shiite split is being used to divide Syrians so that old imperial forces can retake the country. The real issue is that Assad leans left and this is a threat to the monopoly capitalist system which employs these intelligence operatives,” said Dean Henderson in an exclusive interview with the Fars News Agency.

Dean Henderson was born in South Dakota and earned an M.Sc. in environmental studies from the University of Montana in 1991. He founded the political newsletter “Missoula Paper” in 1990. Henderson has traveled to some 50 countries and has written articles for the Global Research, In These Times, Paranoia, Veterans Today, Rense.com and Press TV. Dean co-founded of the U. of Montana Green Party and Ozark Heritage Region Peace & Justice Network. He was Vice-President of the Central Ozarks Farmer's Union and former President of the Howell County Democrats. In 2004 he won the Democratic nomination for Congress in Missouri's 8th District. He has authored four books.

Mr. Henderson took part in an exclusive interview with the Fars News Agency and responded to some questions regarding the ongoing violence in Syria and the future of war in the crisis-hit country.

What follows is the text of the interview.

Q: It seems that one of the objectives the foreign forces are seeking in Syria is the fomentation of sectarian strife and religious conflict between the different ethnic and religious groups, especially the Sunni majority population and the Shiite-Alawite minority. What's your viewpoint toward the efforts made by the foreign powers and insurgents who want to pit the Sunnis against the Shiites in Syria?

A: Yes, the Anglo-American intelligence apparatus is using the same old divide and conquer strategy they have used since the days of the India/Pakistan split. We have seen an increased use of this “playing the ethnic card” to recently conquer Iraq, Rwanda, Yugoslavia, Afghanistan and now Syria. The Sunni/Shiite split is being used to divide Syrians so that old imperial forces can retake the country. The real issue is that Assad leans left and this is a threat to the monopoly capitalist system which employs these intelligence operatives.

Q: What do you think about the chances of the U.S. intervening in Syria militarily? Of course Russia and China will not allow a UN Security Council resolution against Syria which may legalize the military attack, but the U.S. and its European allies may take action unilaterally and recklessly, like what they did about Afghanistan. What's your take on that?

A: I do not think the U.S. will intervene in Syria unilaterally, only because the Russian response thus far has been much more firm than in previous conflicts like Iraq or Libya. If they do intervene, there will have to be a face-saving Russian response after all they have invested and things then get very dangerous.

Q: What's your viewpoint on the situation of the Syrian refugees who have fled to such countries as Turkey, Lebanon, Iraq and Jordan? Has the international community done enough to solve the problems of these desperate people? 

A: The situation is dire and the international community has not done enough to help the refugees. The West is using the refugees as a political tool by blaming Assad, but the Free Syrian Army and its international sponsors are clearly to blame for the crisis.

Q: Before the Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi was ousted from office through a military coup on July 3, he had announced that the bilateral relations between Syria and Egypt would be severed. Why did Egypt adopt such an approach toward the Syrian issue? Wasn't President Morsi aware of the dangerous plots of the U.S. and its allies for Syria? 

A: Morsi is Muslim Brotherhood and these thugs have always worked with their Western counterparts - the Freemasons. Of course he knew of the plot as he was part of it. Many don't realize that the protesters in Egypt and also those in Turkey are calling for an end to these two nations' complicity in the plot against Assad. Hopefully the new Egyptian government will re-establish ties with Damascus and cease hostilities towards Assad.

Q: The opponents of President Assad accuse him of using chemical weapons against the protesters, but the Syrian government says that it possesses credible evidence that they are the insurgents and foreign-backed terrorists who used chemical weapons against the pro-government demonstrators and army forces. What do you think about this duality?

A: It is clear to me that the Free Syrian Army was the one using chemical weapons, partly as a false flag operation to blame the Assad government for doing so. Assad would be mad to have used these weapons as it would provide a pretext for further Western aggression. It is purely propaganda.

Q: How do you see the role of the mainstream media, especially the Arab news outlets in boosting the morale of the insurgents and foreign-backed mercenaries? Of course the war is going on, and psychological operations have a focal importance in determining the fate of the war. What's your take on that?

A: The Western and Arab mainstream media are a joke, a tool for the monopoly capitalist agenda. The entire spectrum from Fox News on the right to PBS and Al Jazeera on the so-called “left” have been cheerleaders for the rebels. There has been no balance reporting on the issue. It is instructive that now that Assad has routed the rebels, the mainstream media had gone silent on the conflict.

Q: Some political commentators have suggested that the war on Syria is a war for the vast offshore gas reserves the country possesses, like the war on Iraq which was a war for oil. Will the Western powers and their mercenaries succeed in bringing Syria to its knees and take over Syria's gas reserves?

A: It seems likely that there are resources at stake, whether natural gas reserves or pipelines. In the end I do not believe that the imperialists will succeed in Syria and we may very well look back on this conflict as a turning point in the global power balance as the Anglo-American alliance becomes less relevant and the BRIC nations emerge as a global counterbalance.

Kourosh Ziabari is an award-winning Iranian journalist and media correspondent. He writes for Global Research, CounterCurrents.org, Tehran Times, Iran Review and other publications across the world. His articles and interviews have been translated in 10 languages. His website is http://kouroshziabari.com







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