Sunday, August 25, 2013

Analysis on the origin of CW missile #197 that landed in Ghouta, Syria.


Before people accuse me of taking sides, I'd like to first and foremost say that I'm a Kurd. I will not take sides in this war, as doing so will either force me to support a brutal dictatorship like the Syrian Baath Party, or brutal Jihadists like al-Qaeda (call them "ISIS" or "Jabhat al-Nusra," it doesn't matter, both are al-Qaeda aligned.) I'm posting this because UN is refusing to send a proper investigation team to the sites that have allegedly been attacked with chemical weapons. This is worrisome. Especially to me, as a Kurd. If they can let the truth get away, then the next who might be attacked will be the Kurds, and we know how much the World really cared when Halabja got bombed by the Iraqi Baathists. My conclusions from this little investigation might not suit one side or the other, but it will be ONE truth unraveled from this mess. I'm an engineer by profession, and I have had military background. Those who know me, know this to be true, and I'm willing to verify this to any member of a U.S. govt. agency (that can show me an ID). Enough with annoying Italics; let's begin.


The following pictures were taken from this IMUGR account. As I don't know Arabic and as I'm not familiar with the logos on these pictures, I don't know WHO took them first. What I know is that it was taken by pro-Opposition sources. These pictures were taken from ONE of the sites allegedly attacked with chemical weapons in Ghouta, east of Damascus. I tried to verify the exact location by contacting several Syria "experts," but they did either not know, or I was ignored. In any case, I received no answers.

I initially gave up on investigating these pictures, but after giving them an umpteenth look, I realized that I could pinpoint a general direction of origin. I will present my conclusions with a series of original pictures, where I have tagged them with arrows and text.

The Pictures

If you look at the picture below, you will see the missile designated as #197 (verified through this picture: It can clearly be seen that the missile bent forward due to stress during impact. This itself shows which direction the missile came from. The missile bent toward the same direction it was flying (through inertia). There is another bend at the point of the missile, but that one is caused by the normal force from the ground opposing the impact of the missile.

Picture #1

Secondly, I would like you to look at the shadows cast by the people around the missile. Compare the different pictures, and you will notice that the shadows have changed angle in the later pictures. This implies that the pictures were taken at different times. The shadows will also help us determine WHERE the missile came from.


In this second picture, the missile is still stuck in the ground, and it has not been disturbed since impact. The shadow of the opposition fighter is very long, implying that the sun is low on the horizon. This won't tell us (YET!) whether this is an earlier picture (that is, whether the sun was rising) or a later picture (that is, the sun was setting). Notice the building in the picture. The bend (implying an angled impact) also tells us that it did not come from the direction where that building is placed (or it would have hit the building first).

Picture #2

This third picture (which I used as a reference in the first picture to explain about the stress bend of the missile, and how it gave away the direction the missile came from) shows a picture taken in close proximity in time to the second picture. The opposition fighters have gathered around the missile, and are inspecting it. Notice the stone in the lower left corner, as I will use it in the next picture to show that it is 1) the same missile, 2) that this same missile has been disturbed. (Notice also that the opposition fighter to the very right is the same guy as in the second picture, telling us that it is the same missile.)

Picture #3

In the fourth picture, the missile has been dug out. This implies that this fourth picture is the LATER picture (later in the day). Notice also the direction of the shadows. They're now stretching toward the opposite side as the shadow in the first picture, corroborating the claim that this is the later picture. See the stone? This is the same stone as in picture three, and it is still to the right (or left, depending on how you look at it) of the missile. The building in the second picture is behind the photographer.

Picture #4

  1. As the second picture is taken earlier in the day, and as the shadows are stretching very long, it implies that the picture is taken in the morning. As the sun is rising from the east (behind the opposition fighter), the photographer is therefore facing SOUTH.
  2. Therefore, the first picture shows that the missile came from NORTH, as the stress bend is toward the SOUTH. So, it came from NORTH, impacted, the missile was structurally stressed, but it couldn't tumble forward, so it bent forward instead (due to inertia).
  3. As Ghouta is to the east of Damascus, and as the Syrian 155th Brigade (accused of launching these attacks) are shelling from Mount Kalmun army base in the south of Damascus, it can't have been launched from this site.
  4. IF the SAA launched this specific missile, it must have done so NORTH of this location. Now, I'm not an expert on the moving trenches of the Syrian War, and I have currently no calculations of the velocity of this missile (thus can't determine range). I don't know the range of these missiles, but what I can say is that it was most likely NOT fired at a high angle (as the impact is not at a straight down angle, as the stress bend shows).

    But I don't know exactly WHERE this impact occurred. But the only way this being a SAA strike, is if these pictures depict the alleged hit on Ayn Tarma (the lower-mid location on the map).

    [UPDATE: The location which this missile hit has been located and verified to be Zamalka, and the origin is most likely Al Qabun area, north of Zamalka. I had previously thought Al Qabun was under government control during the Ghouta incident, but this was conveyed to me through rebel sources, and after further investigation, I was not able to find proof of this claim.]

Picture from Wikipedia article on Ghouta chemical attack.

I hope this post will open up the discussion regarding the chemical attacks on Ghouta, which took countless of lives. The dead deserves the truth, and as UN is still dragging their feet and are once again showing us their spineless nature, I think it is up to YOU and ME to shed light on this atrocity. My agenda is clear: If the perpetrator of this attack won't be revealed, then the same perpetrator can commit the same atrocity anywhere in Syria, and then blame their opponent.

Also, if this is the deed of al-Qaeda, I'm then hoping that a public discourse on the truth will HALT our politicians from going into a war that is NOT in our interest. We waved goodbye to our troops with yellow ribbons on our chests. They went to Iraq and Afghanistan to fight those they believed to be responsible for 9/11. We lost THOUSANDS of soldier in these wars, allowing our politicians to use their deaths in their political campaigns, shedding crocodile tears for the miseries of the fallen soldiers' families. We now have the Patriot Act, and the NSA is spying on ALL of us, and the reason is to keep us SAFE from al-Qaeda. If that is so, then why would we SUPPORT them in Syria? Does this make sense to you? Because it does not to me.

If you need to get in touch with me, you can follow me on twitter at @r3sho, or send an e-mail to thekurdishcause at gmail.

/Resho Bistuyek

(Did some minor changes on typos, and updated the missile number. I had previously thought that it was either #191 or #161, but this picture shows it to be #197.)

Related articles:

Follow up analysis of alleged CW missile #197: Was it a thermobaric bomb?


  1. The arabic word on the bottom left of your picture reads 'Irbin or 'arbin ( عربين ). It's one of the cities on your map. Could be the location.

  2. correction this video says city of Zamalka at 0mn11, also on the map

  3. Franck,

    Thanks for your input! It seems to be Zamalka, as discussed here (by Brown Moses, et al):

    His sources has suggested that the impact occurred at this location:,+%2B36%C2%B0+21%27+26.81%22&ie=UTF8&ll=33.520811,36.357547&spn=0.002281,0.005284&t=h&z=18

    If this is the case (and the probability seems high), then it verifies that the missile was launched from a northern direction. Still speculations on who launched it and exactly from where.

    But this discussion is perhaps the ONLY one occurring on the net at the moment. We've at least done more than UN claims to have.

  4. Petri,

    Thank you for discussing this! You had noticed that the impact was slight off from a perfect northern origin, and I concur. The impact crater seen on picture #2 is showing that it is slightly favoring a NW origin.

    Now, I have to add that we don't know whether this missile flew straight (that is, whether the missile was perfectly aligned with its trajectory), due to its DIY nature. I believe that any type imperfections in the manufacturing (or welding) of the fins could have caused the missile to have its tail part slightly wobble (like a dart arrow thrown by a beginner).

    But I think these are trivialities, and the origin is still from the NORTH (with perhaps +/- 5-10 degrees deviation) or so.

    Thanks again, and please keep me updated!

  5. Hi, I'm another ACLOS member. I would not have found this, had though more mid-day, so what is east I thought northeast. But I had scanned around for the features in the videos. The spot identified is a very good match for all these. Not 100% sure, but the comparison images seem sound. I'm a little surprised that water tower to the west is never visible. Would help narrow things down, but you can only almost see it.



Please be courteous. You have freedom of speech up until your first insult. After that, the rules and laws of The Internet Republic of Resho takes effect. They can be annoyingly arbitrary, so don't provoke their emergence. The views expressed by the commenter is the view of the commenter only.