The Grayzone entered the carefully concealed offices of a covert, British government-backed propaganda mill that is at the center of an international scandal the mainstream media refuses to touch.
By Mohamed Elmaazi and Max Blumenthal
Recent hacked documents have revealed an international network of politicians, journalists, academics, researchers and military officers, all engaged in highly deceptive covert propaganda campaigns funded by the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), NATO, Facebook and hardline national security institutions.
This “network of networks”, as one document refers to them, centers around an ironically named outfit called the Integrity Initiative. And it is all overseen by a previously unknown England-based think tank registered in Scotland, the Institute for Statecraft, which has operated under a veil of secrecy.
The whole operation appears to be run by, and in conjunction with, members of British military intelligence.
According to David Miller, professor of political sociology in the school of policy studies at the University of Bristol and the director of the Organization for Propaganda Studies, the Integrity Initiative “appears to be a military directed push.”
“The most senior government people are professional propagandists and spooks,” Miller explained. “The ‘charity’ lead on this [Chris Donnelly] was also appointed as a colonel in military intelligence at the beginning of the project — a truly amazing fact that suggests this is a military intelligence cut out.”
A minister for the UK FCO has officially confirmed that it has been funding the Integrity Network.
Max Blumenthal is an award-winning journalist and the author of several books, including best-selling Republican Gomorrah, Goliath, The Fifty One Day War, and The Management of Savagery. He has produced print articles for an array of publications, many video reports, and several documentaries, including Killing Gaza. Blumenthal founded The Grayzone in 2015 to shine a journalistic light on America’s state of perpetual war and its dangerous domestic repercussions.
An exclusive Grayzone investigative documentary rips the cover off of the most sophisticated and expensive campaign of humanitarian interventionist propaganda in modern history.
By Dan Cohen
For decades, Western governments, corporate media and Hollywood have engaged in a project of mass deception to manufacture consent for military interventions. Waged in the name of lofty ideals like freedom, human rights and democracy, US-led wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya wound up bringing death, destruction and even the return of slavery to the African continent. As the wounds from those catastrophes festered, Washington embarked on its most ambitious project yet, marketing another war of regime change, this time in Syria.
This investigative mini-doc exposes the cynical deceptions and faux humanitarianism behind the campaign to sell the dirty war on Syria. It will also demonstrate the lengths that the US and its allies have gone to develop new ploys to tug at Western heartstrings and convince even liberal minded skeptics of war that a US intervention was necessary — even if it meant empowering Al Qaeda’s largest franchise since 9/11 and its theocratic allies among the insurgency. Big lies and little children have formed the heart of what is perhaps the most expensive, sophisticated, and shameless propaganda blitz ever conducted. Welcome to the Syria Deception.
Hollywood’s role in promoting war is nothing new. The American film industry has collaborated over the years with the State Department, the Pentagon, and the intelligence services to produce an array of films burnishing the military’s image, revising controversial US actions, and propagating official accounts of critical events through action blockbusters. As the American role in destabilizing Syria expanded, so too did the number of high budget documentaries produced on the crisis. This film will examine what is perhaps the most ambitious perception management documentary project of them all: Cries From Syria.
Produced by HBO, debuted at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival, and now available on Netflix, Cries from Syria was widely promoted in mainstream Western media outlets and was even screened in the International Court of Justice. The feature length documentary has been also promoted by public figures from the neoconservative Nikki Haley, who as us ambassador to the united nations has agitated for regime change from Syria to Iran, to recently-deceased rock musician Chris Cornell, who included footage from the film in his final music video before he committed suicide. pop diva Cher even composed an original song for the film.
Watch as I attended a screening of the film on Capitol Hill in May 2017 that brought together some of the key lawmakers, pseudo-experts, corporate media pundits, and professional regime change lobbyists behind the Syria deception.
If you want to see more exclusive content like this that confronts and exposes Washington’s dangerous bipartisan foreign policy establishment consensus, become a Grayzone patron here.
The UK Navy “rescued” Manchester Arena suicide bomber Salman Abedi in Libya in 2014. This provides further insight into the original CIA definition of blowback.
Seven years after NATO allied with Islamist insurgents and violently overthrew Libya’s government, plunging the oil-rich North African nation into a hellish chaos from which it still has not recovered, we are learning more and more about the disastrous blowback this war later unleashed back at home.
The Guardian has reported that the British Navy “rescued” Manchester Arena suicide bomber Salman Abedi in Libya in 2014 — three years before he massacred 22 people at a concert by the pop singer Ariana Grande.
What this Guardian article did not disclose is that the British government is even further implicated in this massive scandal.
Grayzone Project editor Max Blumenthal reported immediately after the May 22, 2017 suicide attack how Abedi’s father had fought in the al-Qaeda-linked extremist militia the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, which has extensive ties to US and UK intelligence agencies and had been used to try to assassinate Libyan leader Moammar Qadhafi.
Jake Kallio is a writer and antiwar activist in Montreal, Canada.
An ex-CIA analyst has raised suspicions about the Trump CIA’s release of bin Laden documents and apparent collaboration with the hard-right Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) to demonize Iran.
The Central Intelligence Agency appears to have collaborated with the neoconservative think tank Foundation for Defense of Democracies to try to link Iran to the Salafi-jihadist group al-Qaeda.
Ned Price, a former CIA analyst and spokesman, has suggested that the move may be part of a wider campaign by the Trump administration’s new CIA director to establish “a rationale for regime change” in Tehran.
In the lead-up to the illegal 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq, the effort to link Baghdad to al-Qaeda was “a key element of the march to war,” Price explained, implying that the Trump administration might be doing something similar with Iran.
President Donald Trump has, since the beginning of his term, made aggressive opposition to Iran a key feature of his foreign policy. He has surrounded himself with anti-Iran hawks in the White House, and pledged to unilaterally “tear up” the nuclear deal agreed to by major world powers.
Saudi Arabia, a key U.S. proxy in the Middle East, has in recent weeks escalated its campaign against Iran. The Saudi monarchy pressured Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri to resign, and has been accused of holding him hostage. The kingdom then effectively declared war on Lebanon, in the name of countering Iran and its ally Hezbollah.
President Trump has praised Saudi Arabia’s belligerent intervention and foreign meddling, even while accusing Tehran of doing exactly what Riyadh is doing. The U.S. government is working very closely with the Saudi monarchy and Israel to, in Trump’s words, “counter the regime’s destabilizing activity.”