By Firas Samuri
The 89th Academy Awards held in Los-Angeles on February, 26, was full of curious incidents. Of five films nominated in the short documentary category, three were devoted to the Syrian crisis and the problem of refugees. To everyone’s surprise the Netflix film titled “The White Helmets” took home the Oscar. This movie tells us about volunteer rescue workers who are allegedly engaged in rescuing people trapped in the combat zone in Syria.
The movie has numerous frames captured by the White Helmets crew members where they ‘selflessly’ render assistance to a peaceful population. Peculiarly enough, they work only in the areas controlled by Jabhat al-Nusra’s terrorists. At the same time the representatives of the White Helmets unanimously accused Syrian and Russian air forces of indiscriminate attacks, which allegedly lead to a huge number of civilian casualties.
It should be mentioned that since the beginning of the conflict Syria witnessed the creation of multiple non-governmental organizations. Among these organizations was The White Helmets group, which was formed in 2012 with the declared purpose of advocating for the rights and freedoms of Syrians and providing them with humanitarian aid. This organization was initiated by former British intelligence officer James Le Mesurier who participated in various conflicts around the world, namely in Bosnia, Kosovo, Iraq and Palestine.
Funding of the organization comes from donations and international grants, but the principal sponsor of the organization is the Open Society Foundation. the OSF has been heavily funding international organizations such as Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, in order to discredit the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. According to experts, the organization annually receives sums ranging from 30 to 50 million dollars from the United States, Great Britain, the Netherlands and the Gulf monarchies. It doesn’t take much to guess that the Western countries won’t waste such a big sum of money without a reason.
The White Helmets continues to play a leading role in the Western cyber warfare as a weapon, which is used against the legitimate government of Syria. Due to a great number of fake photos and videos in the social networks picturing rescuers who ‘risk’ their lives to save civilians caught in the country’s devastating war, the Western audience receives a distorted picture of the military situation in Syria. Western TV-Channels including Pan-Arabic Al Jazeera and Al Arabiya promote White Helmets as the only humanitarian organization which is allegedly engaged in rescuing Syrians. At the same time in their coverage they have never mentioned the actual efforts of the Syrian government and its allies for the sake of settlement of the crisis and supplying the affected population with humanitarian aid.
It seems that the winner of the best documentary short was decided long before the ceremony, with powerful figures wit a finger in a pie of the jury’s final decision. It follows that the Academy Award has become a completely politicized event. Apparently now the statuettes will be given not to the films that actually deserve them but to the ones that have been bankrolled by magnates to promote Western interests. By promoting this film the Western world has shown its true colors in relation to ordinary Syrians tired of injustice of the terrorists, the indifference of the world community and yearn for peace.