A Tale of Two Aleppos

by Bill Purkayastha — Off-Guardian Dec 11, 2016

People walk past damaged buildings in the opposition-held Tariq al-Bab neighbourhood of Aleppo, Syria, October 5, 2016. Click to enlarge

Going on CNN and other free and truth-telling Western media, you discover a horrifying Aleppo apocalypse, where the evil tyrant Assad is massacring untold thousands of civilians, with the help of even more evil Russian air strikes, which invariably hit hospitals, schools, and bakeries. You discover a city where people would rather die than give themselves up to the tender mercies of this regime, with its torture camps and jails, and where a tiny handful of brave rebels and White Helmets stand between them and annihilation.

Going on the Russian paid fake news sites, like for example 21st Century Wire, The Duran, Al Masdar News or Moon of Alabama, strangely enough, you discover a different Aleppo altogether – one in which the “White Helmets” are fake propaganda, the rebels are actually headhunting jihadi terrorists who have been holding tens of thousands of civilians hostage, and where the legitimate government of Syria is liberating them with Russian military aid. You find an Aleppo where the people are grateful to the government forces for defeating the terrorists, and for feeding and liberating them.

Obviously, the former are the ones to believe, because the latter are just paid Russian sites, right? Quite true, you think, and sit back complacently to see the evidence laid out by the former to blow the latter away.

And then you have a little problem, because the former have nothing – no evidence at all, none whatever, except the “statements” of “activists” and the burblings of “UN officials” who contradict themselves each time they open their mouths. On the latter side, though, you have video after video of people celebrating at their rescue; you have visuals testifying to the brutality of the terrorists, and the depravity with which they starved the people while keeping back food and medicine for themselves; you have the testimony of actual reporters right on the ground, following on the footsteps of the troops.

You have, in other words, evidence.

There is only one way you can make your way out of this conundrum with your reality intact. Close your eyes and look away from those videos!  Block those annoying people on Fakebook and Twitter who insist on inflicting unpleasant evidence on you! Tell yourself, a thousand times over, that Assad is a tyrant, Putin is evil, and cuddly little moderate rebels are battling for freedom against them. That is the only way to sanity.

Fail to do so, and you are well on the way to becoming a Paid Russian Fake News Troll yourself.

You have been warned.

 

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