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In-Depth Interview: Journalist Gareth Porter Challenges Official Reports Claiming Syrian Use of Sarin in Khan Sheikoun

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Reporter and historian Gareth Porter did deep, technical investigation into reports by UN and other groups supporting Trump’s claim that Syria used sarin gas in April incident in Khan Sheikoun.Porter’s detailed report for Alternet is here.

Porter comments on his initial skepticism of the Syria-used-sarin claim, based on earlier, reports that were later undermined or disproven, and PBC notes that Porter has been exposing lies by the American military since Vietnam.

Porter concludes that there was no sarin released in Khan Sheikoun on April 4, and suspects that a building that stored pesticides was hit by conventional weapons and spewed deadly phosphine gas, which has many effects similar to sarin.

We review many aspects of the reports from a UN commission, Human Rights Watch, and the Organization for Prevention of Chemical Weapons, all of which support the Trump narrative, while failing to fully explore other scenarios.  Porter is skeptical of the “White Helmet” responders, who took no precautions in dealing with victims, and would be expected to be adversely affected by second-hand exposure to sarin.

Porter notes that OPCW violated its own policies by using samples delivered by a third party, and that the attacks were likely staged in reaction to statements by multiple Trump administration officials that the US was no longer seeking to eject Assad from power.

We mention Trump’s UN speech where he used the claim of Syrian chemical weapons use to justify taking down the Assad “regime”, and that corporate media and most political leaders aren’t interested in correcting the official narrative. And we refer to Robert Parry’s recent skeptical report on Khan Sheikoun.