Marcus Southworth to ST: Public Opinion Towards Syria Unfairly Distorted to Back Political Agendas

Chairman of the International Conciliation Council (ICC) in the United States Mr. Marcus Southworth has stressed that public opinion towards events taking place in Syria has been unfairly distorted to support conflicting political agendas coming from US allies like Israel, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and Turkey.

He sees that it is necessary to change public opinion towards Syria that has accomplished an admirable feat in its fight against terrorism, describing sanctions as ‘evil invention’.

In an e-mail interview with the Syriatimes newspaper on Tuesday, the ICC chairman said: “In the very beginning of the Syrian conflict, maps were being circulated in reputable newspapers and periodicals here in the US showing political changes in the region that would likely result from the “Syrian Civil War”.  Of course, we know that this has not been a “civil war”.  It has been an “un-civil" perpetrated by criminals seeking strategic and economic advantages.”

 He clarified that these maps originally portrayed Syria being divided into 3 equal parts similar to the division during the Ottoman era:  1/3 going to Turkey, 1/3 going to Jordan and 1/3 going to Saudi Arabia.  As time passed, ISIS, Al Nusra Front, Al Qaeda and others decided that they would use this "rebellion" to their advantage and to expand their influence by claiming Syria as their treasured domain.  The US, Saudi, Jordan and Turkey all began choosing "rebel" groups to help them accomplish their depraved, distorted, and evil agenda.  But it all resulted in confusion and parties started fighting against each other.

The evil agenda was foiled as a great ally- Russia- stepped forward to support president Bashar al-Assad in preserving Syria’s border, according to Mr. southworth, who made it clear that the US and other western countries seek to balance the power and interests in the region.

Syria accomplished admirable feat in its fight against terrorism

Actually Russia has been a great supporter of Syria and it has vetoed many draft resolutions presented by US and its allies in the United Nations Council against Syria. Most recently, the United States draft on extending the mandate of the Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM) of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).

“US Ambassador to the UN, Niki Haley is wrestling with a changing political position regarding Syria.  I will be interested in seeing how this position evolves as relations with Russia improve and Syria continues to successfully eliminate [rebel] forces from it borders.  Syria has accomplished an admirable feat in its fight against terrorism.  As the war comes to an end, I expect that diplomacy will become much more attractive politically for the US and others,” Mr. Southworth said.

He added that the international media and enemies to the Syrian State have distorted facts about events in Syria.

The attempts of distorting facts come within the framework of the evil agenda accompanied by ‘evil invention’ from the EU, US and regional countries, which imposed sanctions on the Syrian people.

“Sanctions are an evil invention. It is our desire as the International Conciliation Council to find ways to reduce or eliminate sanctions against Syria. We will be working directly with US lawmakers towards ending these sanctions as soon as possible,” Mr. Southworth affirmed, pointing out that 10,000 hours of diplomacy and negotiation are better than 1 hour of war.

The International Conciliation Council’s goals

The International Conciliation Council (Non-Governmental Institution) was assembled in 2017 to help raise awareness and correct misunderstandings in US and other countries about the conflict in Syria, to encourage diplomatic relations between Syria and the USA, to instill a sense of compassion, concern and empathy towards our Syrian brothers, to support discussion for the immediate release of political and economic sanctions on the country of Syria, and to  honor the magnanimous efforts of Syrian leadership for its efforts to maintain a functional status quo and still preserve the dignity of its people in spite of the ravages of war.

The Council’s Chairman, who headed a US delegation to Syria few days ago and met several officials, said: “We are impressed by the non-prejudicial outreach of social programs throughout its diverse religious and cultural population.  How do you fight a war against a formidable foe, and confused battleground of rebel terrorists and criminals claiming religious allegiance to the great God of Abraham?”

“Terrorist organizations have used fragmented teachings of Islam to justify their treacherous acts of war against innocent people.  Because of this, many people around the world have come to believe that there is something fundamentally wrong with Islam and its many millions of believers.  I find this conclusion careless and dangerous.  Many of my friends are Moslems.  I have come to admire them and respect their principled standards for living and caring for one another.  Many criminals have successfully used religion as a cover for evil throughout time.  Does this mean the religion is wrong or the men that hide behind religious dogmas for personal gain.”

In 2015, Mr. Southworth met the Syrian Republic’s Grand Mufti Sheikh Ahmad Badereddin Hassoun, who explained to him: “the West uses terms that are not well understood in the Middle East like; Islamic Moderates, Islamic Fundamentalists or Islamic Terrorists.  All those are criminals and they have nothing to do with Islam.” 

The terms being used by Mainstream Media (MSM) play a key role in forming public opinion and making policies towards crucial issues all over the world.

“It is my opinion that in order to change US Policy there needs to be a change in public opinion,” Mr. Southworth said, underscoring that much good will come from the recent visit paid by the US activists to Syria as they will participate in panel discussions at Universities and other forums through the US. 

The ICC chairman, who is also the founder and principal officer of Southworth International, TXi Global and Second Qumran Foundation, has no answer to our question – Why Syria matters to you- except that he feels a brotherhood with every Syrian.

“When I am in Syria, I feel like I am one of you and want to do all I can to help you.  The men that were chosen to accompany me to Syria all feel the same way as I do.  They are capable and very influential.  I believe that we will return to Syria soon and most likely, we will bring others who hope to be a part of some grand resolution to the conflicts that currently exist,” Mr. Southworth concluded.

It is noteworthy that the members of the International Conciliation Council, who recently accompanied Mr. Southworth in his visit to Syria [November 11-18-2017] are:

Jeffrey Max Jones (Served in the Mexican government as Federal Congressman (1997- 2000), Federal Senator (2000-2006) and as Undersecretary of Agribusiness Development (2006-2009) at Mexico’s Secretariat of Agriculture).

Dann W Hone (An adjunct faculty in the Department of History and Political Science at Utah Valley University and an emeritus faculty and university administrator of Brigham Young University).

Mark L. Shurtleff (spent most of his professional career in federal, state and local public-sector positions serving as a United States Naval Officer, and Utah Attorney General).

Ashley (Ash) Robinson (serves as Chief Executive Officer of Globus Relief Foundation),

Paul K. Savage (an international business and tax attorney in private practice in Utah).

Steevun Lemon (serves as President and CEO of Haven Light).

Interviewed by: Basma Qaddour