The Trump State Department has frozen funding to the controversial Syrian aid group known as the White Hemlets, a non-governmental organization (NGO) which provided the sole evidence that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad reportedly used chemical weapons on his own people in an April 7 attack on the city of Douma, according to CBS News.
Having not received U.S. funding in recent weeks, White Helmets are questioning what this means for the future. They have received no formal declaration from the U.S. government that the monetary assistance has come to a full halt, but the group’s people on the ground in Syria report that their funds have been cut off. –CBS News
The evidence provided by the White Helmets of the alleged chemical attack was used by the West to justify several airstrikes on Syrian scientific and military facilities throughout April – the first one conducted on Syria’s T4 airbase by Israel 48 hours after the White Helmets’ report. Many Douma residents, meanwhile – including Hospital personnel, say the chemical attack never happened.
The White Helmets are a 3,000 member NGO formally known as the Syrian Civil Defense. Established in “late 2012 – early 2013” after a group of 20 Syrians were trained and organized by former British army officer James Le Mesurier. The group then received funding from Le Mesurier’s Netherlands-based non-profit group, Mayday Rescue – which is in turn funded by grants from the Dutch, British, Danish and German governments.
The US has provided at least $32 million to the group – around 1/3 of their total funding – through a USAID scheme orchestrated by the Obama State Department and funneled to the White Helmets using a Washington D.C. contractor participating in USAID’s Syria regional program, Chemonics.
According to their website, the White Helmets have been directly funded by Mayday Rescue, and a company called Chemonics, since 2014.
Yet there’s evidence that both of those organizations started supporting the White Helmets back in early 2013, right around the time the White Helmets claim to have formed as self-organized groups.
Mayday Rescue, as we said, is funded by the Dutch, British, Danish and German governments. And Chemonics?
They are a Washington, D.C. based contractor that was awarded $128.5 million in January 2013 to support “a peaceful transition to a democratic and stable Syria” as part of USAID’s Syria regional program. At least $32 million has been given directly to the White Helmets as of February 2018. –TruthInMedia
So the US, Dutch, British, Danish and German governments have been funding the White Helmets, a non-governmental organization, through proxies for around five years.
Source: Zero Hedge