Extensive efforts of MSM to whitewash al-Qaeda’s main branch in Syria, Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), are gaining momentum.
On February 2, Martin Smith a reporter for the American Public Broadcasting Service’s Frontline investigative series, proudly announced that he had interviewed the terrorist group’s leader Abu Muhamad al-Julani in the northwestern Syrian region of Greater Idlib.
HTS has been ruling Greater Idlib with an iron fist for several years. The terrorist group did not only use the region as a base to launch terrorist attacks, but also clashed with other factions and repressed the local population.
On his Twitter account, Smith shared a photo he had taken with al-Julani, who appeared wearing a Western-style suit for the first time ever.
Just returned from three days in Idlib, Syria with Abu Muhammad al Jolani, founder of al Qaeda affiliate Jabhat al Nusra. He spoke candidly about 9/11, AQ, Abu Bakr al Baghdadi, ISIS, America and more. Reporting for @frontlinepbs photo @ScottAnger #HTS #Idlib #ISIS #alqaeda pic.twitter.com/9S4qHKBhWH
— Martin Smith (@Martin28Smith) February 2, 2021
Most Syrians on both the government and the opposition sides were quick to criticize Frontline for giving HTS and its terrorist leader a platform. However, a number of Western journalists and researchers, living outside of Greater Idlib for sure, were far more interested in al-Julani’s nice look, trimmed-down beard and his Western outfit.
In 2013, the US State Department listed Al-Julani as a “Specially Designated Global Terrorist.” Four years later, the department announced a $10 million reward for information leading to his capture.
The US had no problems with Frontline’s little visit to Greater Idlib and their warm meeting with a terrorist who fought against American troops in Iraq. There are no details about any legal action that was taken against Smith and his team (spoiler: because there was no such action).
Nevertheless, the State Department’s Reward for Justice program was quick to remind those charmed by al-Julani’s new look of who he is.
يا هلا بالجولاني يا وسيم وشو هالبدلة الحلوة. فيك تغير ثوبك لكن انت بتضلك إرهابي. لا تنسى مكافأة الـ ١٠ مليون دولار.
ارسل لنا معلوماتك عن الجولاني لتحصل على مكافأة تصل الى 10 ملايين دولار، عبر تلغرام أو سكنال أو واتساب: 0012022941037 pic.twitter.com/owFK5hlaja
— Rewards for Justice عربي (@Rewards4Justice) February 2, 2021
“Hello, good looking al-Julani, nice suit,” the Reward for Justice program posted on Twitter. “You can change your outfit, however you will remain a terrorist, do not forget about the $10 million reward.”
Frontline’s new report on HTS and its leader is the most recent in a series of propaganda stunts meant to whitewash al-Qaeda in Syria and present al-Julani as some sort of a “reformer.” The MSM attempts to whitewash HTS contribute to instability in Greater Idlib and encourage the terrorist group to go on with its hostile behavior.
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