Former UK Ambassador to Syria: U.S./UK Policy on Syria Is Doomed, Even Corrupt

Eric Zuesse

Peter Ford, who was the UK’s Ambassador in Syria during 2003-2006, was asked by the BBC in their “The Big Questions” interview on February 14th, whether the current Syrian President Bashar al-Assad would have to be a part of the solution in that country after the war is over, and Ambassador Ford said:

“I think sadly, but inevitably, he is. Realistically, Assad is not going to be overthrown. This becomes more clear with every day that passes. Western analysts have been indulging in wishful thinking for 5 years; it’s time to get real, we owe it to the Syrian people to be much more realistic and hard headed about this. The West has to stop propping up the so-called ‘moderate opposition’, which is not moderate at all.”

This was quoted by Almasdar News on February 18th, which went on to note that, 

“The frustrated interviewer asked Mr. Ford about ‘what we should have done,’ and he responded that ‘we should have backed off, we should have not tried to overthrow the regime.’ Mr. Ford eloquently added that this policy has been ‘like a dog returning to vomit.’”

The accompanying video of the interview there at Almasdar News showed him making that statement in this context: The interviewer was clearly anti-Assad, and Ford responded with evident anger by noting (starting at 2:55 on the video) the shocking fact that:

“In Aghanistan, Iraq, Libya, like a dog returning to vomit, we go back to [and the audience already was started to clap here], we never saw a secular Arab regime that we didn’t want to overthrow.”

He was saying there that we support only non-secular regimes, sectarian regimes, in Arabia, this meaning fundamentalist Sunni governments — especially Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, UAE, the very same regimes that even the U.S. Secretary of State acknowledged in a 2009 cable that was wikileaked, are the chief regimes that are funding Al Qaeda, ISIS and other jihadist groups. Ford was noting that the United States and UK strive to keep in power those governments, the ones that are led by royal families that supply the bulk of funding for jihadist groups — jihadists who perpetrate terrorism in the United States and Europe. “We never saw a secular  Arab regime that we didn’t want to overthrow”: Ambassdor Ford was so bold as to imply that our governments are supporting, under the table, the very same ruling families that they know to be funding (as that cable only vaguely referred to them) “Sunni terrorist groups worldwide” (which includes in Western countries, too).

The BBC’s interviewer ignored that statement; he wasn’t struck by it, such as to ask: “Why are we supporting the chief funders of Islamic jihad? Why are we overthrowing (or in Syria are trying to overthrow) a secular regime, against which we join foreign jihadist groups in order to overthrow that non-sectarian regime; why are these dogs, as you call the U.S. and UK, returning time and again to that vomit?”

This was a live interview program, and so the BBC censors weren’t able to eliminate Ambassador Ford’s responses from the interview; but, instead, the interviewer did his best to interrupt and to talk over Ford’s shocking — and shockingly truthful — assertions about the government (ours) that supposedly represent our  interests (and not the interests of Western oil companies etc.). Ford will probably not be invited again to be on live television in the West to air his views about Syria. 

Ford’s evident anger at what’s going on, and at the media’s resistance to letting the public know about the reality, appeared to reach near to the edge of his blurting out that ulterior motives have to be behind this addiction to “vomit” — but he was a professional diplomat, and so he was able to restrain himself there.

The U.S. Secretary of State who had specifically requested the fundamentalist-Islamic Arab ‘allies’ to stop funding terrorism was Hillary Clinton, the leading candidate now contending for the Democratic Party’s Presidential nomination. Here she was, expressing her current view regarding Syria, in a recent debate against her Democratic Party opponent, Senator Bernie Sanders:

QUESTIONER: In respect to when you take out Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Right now or do you wait? Do you tackle ISIS first? You have said, Secretary Clinton, that you come to the conclusion that we have to proceed on both fronts at once. We heard from the senator just this week that we must put aside the issue of how quickly we get rid of Assad and come together with countries, including Russia and Iran, to destroy ISIS first. Is he wrong?

CLINTON: I think we’re missing the point here. We are doing both at the same time.

QUESTIONER: But that’s what he’s saying, we should put that aside for now and go after ISIS.

CLINTON: Well, I don’t agree with that.

She’s still — now after five years, and even though she knows  that we’re supporting jihadist-backing Arabic royal families and their Shariah-law regimes — comes back to that “vomit”: that “we never saw a secular Arab regime that we didn’t want to overthrow.” She’s an example of this addiction, to that “vomit.”

She does this even though, in October 2014, the man who had collected the mega-donations to Al Qaeda (all of which had been in cash) had detailed, under oath, in a U.S. court proceeding, that the Saud family were the main people who paid the “salaries” of the 9/11 terrorists. The Saud family are now the chief backers of the overthrow-Assad campaign. Do politicians such as Clinton actually represent the Sauds? It’s not only the Bush family who do.

What’s exhibited here is a double-scandal: first, that a person such as that would even be a Democratic Party candidate for the U.S. Presidency (and Jeb Bush shares Hillary Clinton’s foreign policy prescriptions, though he’s virtually certain not  to win the Republican Presidential nomination); and, second, that the Western press try to avoid, as much as possible, to expose the fact that this is, indeed, “vomit,” and avoid to explain to their audience the very corrupt governmental and news-media system that enables people such as Ms. Clinton to become and remain a leading Presidential candidate in the United States. Clearly, a person like that isn’t qualified to be in government at all; she’s corrupt, or else incredibly stupid. And no one thinks she’s that stupid. But lots of people accuse her of being corrupt.


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.