Trump “changed his rhetoric completely and subjected himself to the terms of the deep American state, or the deep American regime,” Assad said
“Yes, from a Western perspective, you are now sitting with the devil. This is how they market it in the west,” Syrian President Bashar al-Assad told teleSUR’s Rolando Segura in an exclusive interview from Damascus, addressing a range of subjects including claims of chemical attacks as well as the shifting geopolitical alignments impacting the war which has ravaged his country.
Speaking on the subject of Donald Trump, the Syrian leader said the U.S. president “has no policies,” but is rather implementing decisions made by “the intelligence agencies, the Pentagon, the big arms manufacturers, oil companies, and financial institutions.”
“As we have seen in the past few weeks, he changed his rhetoric completely and subjected himself to the terms of the deep American state, or the deep American regime,” Assad said.
Despite running on a platform promising a departure from the interventionist foreign policy of predecessor Barack Obama, Trump launched 59 tomahawk missiles on the al-Shariat air base in Homs on April 6 in response to allegations of the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government — claims which Syria’s leader denies.
“That’s why it is unrealistic and a complete waste of time to make an assessment of the American president’s foreign policy, for he might say something; but he ultimately does what these institutions dictate to him. This is not new. This has been ongoing American policy for decades.”
The attack on the airbase came days after the April 4 attack in Khan Sheikhoun, in which 58 people were killed by what experts consider to be exposure to sarin. Syrian opposition groups, the United States and allies including France have blamed Syria’s government, while Damascus has said that armed opposition groups and their sponsors are to blame.
According to Assad, however, his government has asked for independent investigations into the chemical weapons allegations, which he says have been stalled by the U.S. government and its allies.
“We have asked the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons to send specialized missions to investigate what happened. And every time, the United States obstructed these investigations or prevented sending such missions in order to carry out such investigations,” Assad said. “This is what happened last week when we called for investigations over the alleged use of chemical weapons in the town of Khan Sheikhoun. The United States and its allies prevented OPCW from taking that decision.”
Assad alleges that U.S. officials are lying about their claims regarding Syria having chemical weapons, and recalled Colin Powell’s infamous testimony at the United Nations in 2003 where he said that Iraq was in possession of weapons of mass destruction.
“This is what characterizes American politicians: they lie on a daily basis … That’s why we shouldn’t believe what the Pentagon or any other American institution says because they say things which serve their policies, not things which reflect reality and the facts on the ground.”