Bellingcat

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Evidence From 2 Weeks Of Chlorine Barrel Bomb Attacks

Over the past 10 days I've collected videos from various alleged chemical attacks in Syria, all of which appear to be linked to the alleged use of chlorine gas inside improvised barrel bombs.  US officials have recently acknowledge the potential use of chlorine gas in attacks, with one official reportedly stating
Our assessment is it is, at a minimum, concentrated chlorine dropped from helicopters, that could only be the regime. 
The following are playlists of videos from various attacks that have been reported since April 11th

April 11th - Kafr Zita, Hama
April 12th - Al-Taman'ah, Idlib
April 14th - Atshan, Hama
April 16th - Kafr Zita, Hama
April 18th - Al-Taman'ah, Idlib
April 18th - Kafr Zita, Hama
April 21st - Telmans, Idlib

It should be noted these playlists represent only some of the reported chlorine attacks over the past 10 days, with at least six having been reported in Kafr Zita over that period.  Chemical attacks were also reported in Harasta, Damascus on April 11th and April 16th.  It should be stressed there's been no way to independently verify these reports.

Along with videos of victims, videos showing the remains of the improvised barrel bombs used in the attack have also been posted online (playlist).  These videos share some similarities with each other, which adds some weight behind the claim chlorine gas was used.  The following video from Kafr Zita shows the remains of two barrel bombs reportedly used in the attack, with the remains of what appear to be chlorine cylinders are part of the debris


It's worth noting the yellow paint on the chlorine cylinders, the colour coding used for industrial chlorine cylinders in many parts of the world.

Two days after this video was posted online, another video from Kafr Zita was uploaded showing the remains of what was claimed to be another chlorine barrel bomb


In this case it appears explosive det cord has been wrapped around the neck of the gas cylinder, no doubt in an attempt to explosively detach it from the cylinder on impact.  The colours on this cylinder are interesting as well, it appears to be a yellow undercoat with red painted on top.  It's not entirely visible, but it could possibly be an ammonia cylinder, which is usually painting yellow with a red top.

Videos from the April 21st attack at Telmens (playlist) also show the remains of barrel bombs, as well as dead animals near the impact sites



It appears in the first video we can yet again see yellow paint on a cylinder inside the barrel bomb.  Neither video is terribly clear, but there do appear to be some small clues chlorine was used again.


16 comments:

  1. What is the purpose and actual effect of throwing a pressurized container of Chlorine out of the helicopter? These do not seem quite as effective as the bombs which produced 100 feet high mushroom clouds along with a block of destruction.

    What is the point behind chucking the chlorine cylinder out when you can throw a massive bomb out which does a lot more damage?

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  2. Syria seems short on everything now days, including (I imagine) chlorine. If anyone was trying to get their hands on any, they might try this place:

    https://www.google.com/maps/place/36%C2%B010'48.0%22N+37%C2%B029'13.0%22E/@36.1785018,37.4867513,2144m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m2!3m1!1s0x0:0x0

    That's the old SYSACCO chlor-alkali plant just outside of Aleppo. That's where industrial quantities of chlorine come from for water purification or whatever. The owner said it was the only one in Syria when they interviewed him - right after JAN took it over in December of 2012. Another guy from Aleppo was commenting about how that didn't make sense. There's nothing in the immediate vicinity that gave it any military significance. The plant stopped running when JAN took it over, but they did have 400 mT of chlorine. You can see the tanks lined up in a storage yard on the Google image. Maybe JAN was interested in a campaign of winning the hearts and minds of Syrians through some kind of water purification program. A few weeks later, they had the plant locked up and were supposedly guarding it.

    Russia warned everyone about an al-Qaida linked group controlling that much chlorine. Assad was even worried about the CW threat - he told the UN as much. Heck, even Iran was worried about it according to their newspapers. The US was already sending Patriot missiles to Turkey to protect them from some kind of Syrian CW Scud attack, but didn't seem terribly worried about JAN's 400mT of chlorine.

    I'm not sure who controls that plant today. The FSA and IF are re-establishing themselves in the area west of Aleppo, but this plant is 30 km to the west.

    JAN doesn't have helicopters, though. In fact, in the third video at 3:10, you can clearly see some of Assad's chlorine stockpiles. A few wraps of det cord and they'll be ready to go. Can you imagine what would happen if a barrel bomb actually fell right there?

    I have to admit that helicopter chlorine barrel bombs are right in line with Assad's usual tactics. The only thing that's missing here is the UN inspectors sleeping in a hotel only a few minutes away. That's always the best time for carrying out an ineffective CW attack with no conceivable military purpose. Where are those guys?

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    1. There has not been any proof that these Chlorine cylinders are being thrown out of helicopters. What we have is selected and edited clips of videos.

      In the third video, we see different color cylinders which are in a rebel controlled area. These cylinders are blue, red and yellow. Here is a quick index as to gas cylinders:

      Poisonous and/or corrosive gases Yellow
      Combustible gases Red
      Oxidizing gases Light blue
      Inert gases Light green

      Why do the rebels have a collection of different gas cylinders?

      They initially used Chlorine gas in World War 1, but switched to other gases because Chlorine simply sucked as a weapon.

      I am uncertain why the regime would believe throwing a chlorine cylinder out of a helicopter would do more damage then one of their usual large bombs. The usual bombs they throw out seem to implode buildings and blow up the entire block. Thats by far more deadly then the chlorine cylinder.

      I suspect this chlorine gas incident is fake made up by the rebels because they are losing.

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    2. I was being facetious, Mike. The video was filmed at an opposition medical point handling victims of the bombing.

      You're reading a post titled "Evidence From 2 Weeks Of Chlorine Barrel Bomb Attacks". Elliot has already decided Syrian helicopters have been conducting chlorine barrel bomb attacks.

      He does offer some compelling additional evidence from CNN where their Foreign Affairs Reporter, Leslie Labott, has apparently spoken with "U.S. officials and Western diplomats" that are sure it's Assad - but Leslie can't give any names. Unlike Hersh and his crazy unnamed secret sources, Leslie's critical though process and professional journalistic skills went the extra mile by quoting, by name, two undeniably credible sources: US State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki and Senator John McCain.

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    3. Mike agree makes no sense regime using chlorine as conventially they have been making sweeping gains without any sort of CW recently across Syria,makes no sense, real reason I suspect is rebels are losing and trying all sorts to get some sort of outside action, which won't happen anyway.

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  3. Our assessment is it is, at a minimum, concentrated chlorine dropped from helicopters, that could only be the regime.


    LOL here we go there is no evidence or video footage of a helicopter dropping anything only a claim by activist and SOHR, then France got on bandwagon saying it had information...wait for it...BUT NO PROOF, again we have another false flag narrative being banded about by some media outlets and this blog.

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  4. Unexploded Egyptian made rocket (see the logo of the Arab Organization for Industrialization) at Kafr Zita.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sC5y1lN52H8

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arab_Organization_for_Industrialization

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  5. The Western world is looking for any excuse to get involved in Syria. Lets say the West was able to bring down Assad and win the war? Now what? A Sunni version of Iran complete with Sharia law? A version of the former Taliban led Afghanistan? Most certainly what will be left of Syria without Assad will not resemble a free Democracy at all.

    I dont believe Assad is a "good person", but I would rather have Assad and the Hezbollah conquering Syria then the Islamic State of Iraq and Al Nusra. Not everyone lives free in Lebanon and Syria, but under the ISIL and Al Nusra absolutely no one lives free.

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  6. "The Western world is looking for any excuse to get involved in Syria..."

    You sound like this hasn't happened yet, Mike. The West outsources now.

    Do you really think dozens of jihadists from Azerbaijan just show up one day to fight Assad on principle? Crimean Tartar jihadis need a paycheck like anyone else. Georgia has been a good place for the US to recruit Chechen jihadis - because Chechen terrorists are broke. US contract killers in the states are complaining because foreign killers are driving wages down.

    The US only uses it's own, expensive contractors to train cheaper jihadis in Jordan.

    The April Latakia offensive and some kind of recent southern offensive shows just how cheap the US has become. Instead of hiring enough homicidal thugs to fight in Syria, they resorted to shuttling several hundred of them on chartered flights between Amman, Jordan and Antakya, Turkey for the Latakia offensive. Now, they're apparently flying them back into Jordan to create some kind of Golan II ring.

    "Lets say the West was able to bring down Assad and win the war? Now what?"

    I don't think you fully grasp what's going on here: the West has a psychopathic obsession with taking out Iran, period. To do that, they need to control Syria. To do that, they need to topple Assad.

    "...Most certainly what will be left of Syria without Assad will not resemble a free Democracy at all..."

    I don't know how to be more clear about this: the Syrian people are garbage to the NATO-Israel-Gulf nations cabal, just like the Iraqi people were in that war. They don't care if it takes ten more years or two million Syrian deaths or the destruction of the entire country to get rid of Assad and control Syria. In their minds, that needs to happen before they do the same thing to Iran. It's never going to stop.

    Any chance of freedom for the Syrian people ended the day the western cabal started sending titushki to the earliest Syrian protests.

    No Syrian want's anyone's boot on their neck. Obama's boot is no different than Assad's, Putin's or Netanyahu's.

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  7. And then there's always the alternate gas bottle delivery system:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RiUuuhN0E88&list=UUnigacRk8PMRKK47soehLWA

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    1. Just a wild guess but that alternate gas bottle delivery system looks like a modified M-240 240mm towed mortar tube and recoil assembly. It also looks like the breach has been modified/sealed. The treaded portion on the end of the tube looks like the adapter for attaching the towing bar with lunette ring has been removed.

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    2. I couldn't figure out why the end looked that way - threads for a towing adapter make sense. Just where does one find an unmounted 240mm mortar in Syria?

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    3. I know in Iraq we ran across a number of large warehouses (armament supply points/depots). These buildings were chalked full of artillery and rocket launcher components/weapon system subassemblies including lots an lots of individual 122mm rocket launcher tubes. Maybe the rebels captured a Syrian government supply point/depot warehouse containing such items as individual mortar tube subassemblies?

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    4. Makes sense. And I see that if I bothered to take the five seconds to Google it, I would have re-discovered this useful information from nearly two years ago:

      http://rogueadventurer.com/2012/06/22/240mm-heavy-mortars-in-syria-a-closer-examination/

      Even though it might be used for CW, the video doesn't show anything like that. It looks like and old acetylene tank used as an HE round. I know the brownish detonation cloud has some significance, but you'll have to help me out there.

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    5. Thanks, that's a good article. Also, good call on the HE round/brownish cloud.

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  8. Chlorine gas produces a visible dense, greenish cloud when released. Are there any videos of barrel bomb attacks that show a greenish cloud in the explosion's aftermath?

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