New fake ‘rescue’ scenes by White Helmets in Western media narrative on Syria

30 July 2018 — The Indicter

Stage & training scenes published as ‘real action’

White Helmets operatives training “recruits”, rehearsal stage fires and fake lifesaving …and how to pose in photographs and videos later distributed by pro-NATO press agencies as if were ‘real rescue’ imagery or footage.

By Marcello Ferrada de Noli

Professor Emeritus and The Indicter chief editor

Published 28 July 2018

Google News indexed yesterday (July 28, 2918) a news report about the White Helmets rescued by Israel, and published in YnetNews. This publication is, according to Wikipedia, the “English-language Israeli news website of Yedioth Ahronoth, Israel’s most-read newspaper, and the Hebrew news portal, Ynet. So I understand it’s a main source used by Western mainstream media, and of course by OPCW, under the category they call “open sources”. As I have already commented in a report that made its way to the UN Security Council, these “open sources” have formed the backbone of the allegations of chemical attacks in Syria imputed to the government forces.

And Ynet was not the only news outlet that used the fake-rescuing photos signed “AFP” (French Press Agency”) to deceive about the White Helmets. A similar take, using the same image above, was used by Trendolizer:

Nevertheless, the Ynet article, titled “As some ‘White Helmets’ escaped Syria, most were left behind” contains an extensive pictorial showing the rescue work of the ‘White Helmets’, referred as to “a civilian rescue organization that works under bombardment to pull people from the rubble.” Of the nine photos in the pictorial, seven are credited to “AFP” press agency, one to “AP” (Associated Press), and one to Reuters.

In the pictures showed in the news article we see the Withe Helmets volunteers rescuing victims of attacks, some of them with bloody wounds or emergency paramedical aid worked on them.  Examples below:

Of course, any one with the idea of amplifying the picture above, could discover that the “patient” is another White Helmets operative. He sports the same uniform-trousers, and the tiny “White Helmets” symbol has not been Photoshop-erased from the right pocket.

We also see in the article a dramatic image of White Helmets rescuers extinguishing with bravery, a close distance, the fire exploding in a passenger bus – a rescue operation that, in the context given by the report, has been conducted “under bombardment” – meaning attacks presumably perpetrated by Syrian government forces or its allies.


Most of the scenes depicted in the AFP photographic material showed in the commented article do not correspond to actual, true, rescue operations. Instead, those are scenes from a rehearsal conducted by the White Helmet in Marea, near Aleppo. It’s about a training and rehearsal for instance how to set ablaze passenger buses and then posing while extinguishing the fire caused by “the attack” of government forces.

In no place in the the article YnetNews article is explained the true origin of the scenes depicted in the photographs, all of them bearing the sign of reputed pres agencies, such as AFP.

Nevertheless, The Indicter had access to a video in which the scenes are described as “new White Helmets recruiters graduate…after taking part in training exercises”. And this footage is now uploaded by The Indicter Channel in You Tube. Click here or in the image below for the video:

The source of our footage is an uploaded material by Sharja24News. Facsimile here below, uploaded under the category “news and politics“:

A reflection at first sight is to realize that White Helmets are not any longer referred as “new volunteers”, but as “new recruits”. And it correctly given, because the White Helmets operatives receive a monthly salary –indexed as “month stipend” by Google.

So, the material distributed in those regards by the Western MSM –as in the article commented above– do not correspond to real scenes of rescuing by the White Helmets.

And the immediately concern that arises is how real could these other similar scenes distributed by countless press agencies and media outlets are. For example, this scene reported as “after an unknown explosion” – no more details given:

Article edited by Dr. Lena Oske, MD, from The Indicter Editorial Board.

The author:

Prof. Marcello Ferrada de Noli (photo at left, at the Geneva Press Club conference, Nov 2017) is professor emeritus of epidemiology with research focus on Injury epidemiology, medicine doktor i psykiatri (PhD, Karolinska Institute), and formerly Research Fellow  at Harvard Medical School. He is the founder and chairman of Swedish Professors and Doctors for Human Rights and editor-in-chief of The Indicter. Also publisher of The Professors’ Blog, and CEO of Libertarian Books – Sweden. Author of “Sweden VS. Assange – Human Rights Issues.”

Media contributions: Op-ed articles in Dagens Nyheter (DN), Svenska Dagbladet (Svd), Aftonbladet, Västerbotten Kuriren, Dagens Medicin,  the Journal of the Swedish Medical Association (Läkartidningen) and other Swedish media. Contributing articles in Global Research (Canada) and Izvestia (Russia). Exclusive interviews in Dagens Nyheter (DN), Expressen, SvD and Aftonbladet, TASS, El Telégrafo, Sputnik, and in Swedish TV channels Svt 2, TV4, TV5. Other international TV interviews: Norway TV, Italy TG, RT, Russia Channel 1, Rossiya 24, TVN Chile, Italian and UK channels.

Reachable via email at

Twitter: @Professorsblogg

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