As it now stands, it appears that Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin intend to hold their first meeting on the sidelines of the July 7-8 G20 summit in Hamburg, Germany. But opposition to such a meeting is reportedly exceedingly strong not only among the trans-Atlantic Establishment elite, but also within the Trump Administration itself.
Experienced observers therefore warn of the danger of a major provocation in Syria, or elsewhere, which could lead the U.S. President to take reckless action, as he has done before. The alarm bells rang on June 26, when the White House issued a statement, attributed to spokesman Sean Spicer, claiming that U.S. intelligence had picked up signs that the Assad government was preparing to launch a chemical attack against civilians.
The Kremlin denounced the White House statement in no uncertain terms. Russian Presidential spokesman Dmitri Peskov underscored that the “threat of a chemical attack actually comes from ISIS, not the Syrian government.”
According to the New York Times and the Guardian, US military officials were caught off-guard by the White House statement. Later statements made by Trump Administration officials walked back from the danger.
Spicer’s statement occurred just one day after the publication in Germany’s Die Welt of an investigative article by Seymour Hersh, in which he exposed that there was no intelligence supporting the assertion that the April 4 incident in Khan Sheikhoun, Syria, was a chemical attack by government forces. One of Hersh’s sources warned that, by ordering a cruise missile strike against a Syrian airbase, Trump gave the jihadis what they wanted and set the stage for another such false-flag attack.