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Warning: This site contains images and graphic descriptions of extreme violence and/or its effects. It's not as bad as it could be, but is meant to be shocking. Readers should be 18+ or a mature 17 or so. There is also some foul language occasionally, and potential for general upsetting of comforting conventional wisdom. Please view with discretion.

Monday, July 10, 2017

Two Smoking Gun Head Wounds

Idlib Chemical Massacre 4-4-17
Islamist Massacre
Part 2: Two Smoking Gun Head Wounds
July 10-12, 2017
last edits July 18

Researcher "Qoppa999" (hereafter Qoppa) publish an analysis on Twitter back on June 30, that deserves more attention. (See  this tweet thread: "Following the trail of blood: A deeper look into the lethal center of the Khan Sheikhoun massacre.") I've been slow to finish this blog post to relate the important findings therein. His work identifies two children seen unharmed under opposition care and then later murdered, or at least wounded/mutilated with weapons or tools.

Qoppa also offers name identifications for these children: as it happens, a brother and sister of the Imad Al-Din (Imadeddin) Al-Qadah family, aged 5 and 8. These are related by marriage, at multiple points, to the central target family Al-Yousef, at least as the records are presented (ACLOS). The ID seems like deduction from batches of victims, with some  anchors to provided name-to-face matches. It's not the most certain ID but seems good, as explained below, and so I'll use these names.

Note: regardless of identities, based on the matching, these two children were badly damaged while under opposition care, physically killed and/or mutilated by the foreign-supported terrorists occupying this Syrian town.

Gas Victims in a Truck
The key here is footage from a CNN video ("Gasping for Life) using unique footage the most famous incident stills are taken from. It's horrible and strange: writhing kids in a truck, arriving from elsewhere at the Al-Rahma cave hospital. They're stripped half-naked and soaking wet already as the White Helmets medics seem to hose them off again in the truck.

These 8 children look dead in stills but most if not all are clearly alive and moving around, with one girl (#1 below) drooling foam and gasping horribly in the CNN video (and hence, I guess, its title).  I can't see that being fake: she and others are suffering real respiratory distress. Worse off is the guy with red eyes, mild cyanosis, irritated facial scrapes, and gasping weakly through pink, bloody foam - same video, 1:22. That looks like chlorine exposure, nearing the fatal point. (that's an unusual or extreme case though.)

Most arrivals here are timed roughly in a span from about 7:10 to 8:30 am, with these perhaps being early arrivals; no sunlight is seen breaking across the kids, suggesting the sun is still quite low. Some at least are re-loaded into ambulances and taken elsewhere. Qoppa999 has a numbered analysis, with children #5 and #7 being the main subjects here.


As that tweet notes, "they're among the "head wound children" - but here before being wounded!" And it seems so! Or at least one of them is in the photo we started with on day one (see Islamist massacre part 1, and right). The other might or might not be, but is just as interesting either way. They illustrate just how much concern the humanitarians of Al-Namechange Front and allies had for these victims of "Assad's sarin bomb." If they were willing to mutilate and kill even the children, don't you think they might have poisoned the victims themselves in the first place?


Hind Imad al-Deen al-Qadah, age 5 (as reported)
Left: CNN video, victim #7 above. Right: from a photo taken later (neither timed nor placed)

Matches: a girl of the same basic age and appearance, same length of hair with at least two yellow hair ties on each side, perhaps same earrings (?). Both views seem to show the same chubby face and same eyebrows (long and mildly arcing in the outer portions, heavier and sweeping down on the inner, similar in shape to the boy's - see below). The mouth position seems open from the side view, but that's the puffy lips to go with the chubby cheeks we see. There are no clear identifiers like a birth mark, but with fashion accessories included, this is a solid match, almost totally certain.

Differences: If this is indeed the same girl, then something in-between views has sliced open her forehead scalp, if not the skull beneath. This is on the right side of her head, the same side seen unmarked earlier. The full size of the wound and likeliness of it being fatal are unclear; this is the best view we get anywhere. In all other later views it's turned more away from the camera.

Seeing when this wound appears, we can rule out shelling from the attack, and falling on something sharp when the sarin hit her. This is something that happened after the White Helmets types were making a show of trying to save her life. It seems more like they, or someone allied, violently took it instead.

More Differences: Some possible injuries appear after even that  (tweet) (photo at ACLOS). But what they are is unclear; they could be abrasions, but appearing near the corner of her mouth and nose, it seems possible it's crusted blood, although we don't see any sign of that in any earlier pictures, or a caustic irritant that leaked out at one point. There's also a possible new mark of the same kind on her right shoulder as well.

Abdulrahman Imad al-Deen al-Qadah, age 8. 
Left: CNN video, victim #5 above. Right: from a photo taken later, around 10-11 am (by sun).



Matches: This boy doesn't have the most unique face, nor any clear marks. Yet with two good-quality images from the same angle, we can make a fairly solid call here. I see the same exact ear design, hairline details, and eyebrow shape, the same open eye, and mouth position, same type of nose and chin. The chances of two boy victims looking this similar is exceedingly unlikely, in a pool of about 100 (and no identical twins remotely near this age are reported among them).

Differences: someone has torn a small chunk of tissue from his chin, and sliced his scalp, at least,  besides other wounds to the head and body possible but unseen. In this case we can see this happened after his arrival at the cave hospital, after Islamist forces rescued him from "Assad's sarin bomb" and were in unquestioned charge of his safety. None of these added injuries seems fatal, but from examples below, I suspect there's a fatal one somewhere that these came with.

Most likely everything else was meant to mimic the random violence of "shelling injuries." They would fail, however; shelling can do almost anything, but tends to cause more random damage from shrapnel, flying bricks and concrete, etc. Crushed arms or legs are common, major skin scraping, etc. It doesn't just aim all its sharp fragments towards the head or face and miss entirely with everything else.

A Preceding Injury? Qoppa999 reasons this is the same as the boy with the nosebleed, and as I've noted, with a likely-fatal head wound to go with it. Qoppa reasons that the blood was washed off and fresh wounds added to Abdulrahman's face. However, I doubt this is a valid match, for these differences.

Apparent hair, eyebrow, and other differences suggest to me these are two different injured/executed boys. If so, the one we're looking at now is not included in the group photo above. The wound connected to those blood-filled sinuses seems is likely to be fatal - while there might be reason to add more marks after the fact (to resemble shelling), it seems odd they'd bother wiping off his nose blood first. Further, his apparently flattened face would have to puff back out after these early shots to later show no sign of being laid face down.

So I would scratch the middle connection in the top image here. But the left and right images still seem a match, and the second smoking gun head wound case remains.

Mohamed Mutilated? Petri Krohn noticed this boy after I started the April 12 post - crop at right from a larger photo of several victims under some trees, which I'll call "trees morgue." (ACLOS). That scene includes him and another boy with even worse fresh facial wounds (ACLOS). Qoppa999 identifies the one as  Abdulrahman and the other as his cousin Mohamad Turki al-Qadah. no matches yet to a before image, but if there is one, it would be of great interest.

If marks were added to Abdelrahman's face, it's likely the similar hits and hacks on the face of the boy next to him were intentional. That's not just blood from the nose; on close inspection, it looks like they tore strips of flesh from under his nose and the corner of his mouth, leaving the upper lip seeming to hang loose a bit. This was maybe done at once with some two-pronged tool. The lower prong, or whatever, also seems to have knocked out a few of his teeth. What may be just leaf shadows across his forehead and right eye could also include bruising from the mystery trauma. As with Abdulrahman, we don't see much of his body to see what other "shelling" injuries he has, but I guess these and the unseen fatal wound is all it did.

So that's likely three different boys with head or face wounds - Abdelrahman, Mohamed, and nosebleed boy. At least one was injured after he came under rebel protection. Most likely none of them was harmed by the alleged bombing, and instead all violence - besides all poisoning - was done by the foreign-supported terrorists occupying the town.

Family Identification
At right is a family photo shown to Orient News by the children's supposed aunt  (here stretched towards normalcy). Hind (age 5) is seen in the front, and seems a very good match with the girl under study. This, I think, led to Qoppa's ID, and seems to anchor the rest. The others: her brother Abdulrahman (8) cousin Mohamed (age 5?) is holding the camera, with perhaps cousin Adnan (4) next to him, as their father Turki Mohamed Al-Qadah sits in the back. Hind's brothers are not included for some reason. (so not the most relevant image...) Her own father, Imadeddin Mohamed Al-Qadah, is reported as a pharmacist and widower. How his wife died is unclear to me, but it's said he and the kids lived together with Turki and his family, with Turki's wife Nour Al-Azraq helping take care of everyone (hence the cousin-inclusiveness we see).

The boys in that pictures are harder to correlate, at least for me (Abdulrahman's eyebrows are not very clear). But Hind is quite likely, and the one identified as Abdulrahman is seen in the truck with her, if not in the later 'head wounds' photo. And their eyebrows are very similar.

Furthermore, their father Imadeddin may be seen in the "trees morgue," laid out next to what looks like his brother Turki (as seen above, and at right), and a boy we think is the 12-year-old Mohamed Imadeddin (ACLOS). The latter looks quite thin, sporting the face bruise, but unclear about the possible neck wound (see part 3, forthcoming). At about 13, he seems to complete the men's section here.

The children's section is also three bodies: Abdulrahman, marked up as seen above in next to, perhaps, Turki's son son Mohamed (age 5), with the more seriously wounded face. His other son Adnan (age 4, no marks visible) might be the third younger boy set aside (ACLOS). Hind isn't included here, nor is Turki's wife, nor his own baby girl Hind, 2 months old, both said to die. (note: both men have a son Mohamed and a daughter Hind, because they have the same father and mother with those names. At least, as it's reported. What differentiates them is their middle name: Turki's kids had Turki as a middle name, and Imadeddin's kids had his name.)

So this all lines up well enough the Al-Qadah ID is pretty sound - a good guess at least, and most likely correct.

Why?
It's generally a bad idea to take an unmarked "sarin" victim and ruin the effect by hacking their head. One should have a good reason or two for such a move. I'll propose five of them.
1) The patients refused to die on cue - these kids from the same family suggest the kids of this family were gassed with too low a dose - they need to be dead, one way or another, as we saw in the Ghouta chemical massacre 4 years ago - a man who didn't die had his throat cut open (neck injured, fatally) right in the morgue, between video shoots (video explanation).
2)  These genocidal Islamists like to use blades and tools on captive infidels and apostates, which I suspect these people really were: Alawites, Shi'ites, Christites, government supporters, other opposition members deemed to be insufficiently Muslim.
3) Injuries could be chalked up to the explosive bombs involved - maybe not realistically, but that's always been optional for Syrian "activists."
4) They didn't think anyone would care enough to dig into their pile of propaganda and find these damning before-and-after matches, like Qoppa999 did.
5) They know it wouldn't matter much if someone did; it would be some unpaid, no-influence outsider. All the paid insiders shaping opinions and events know these are the kinds of things you ignore, as you prolong this grotesque conflict to *end Assad's genocide.*

27 comments:

  1. this is very interesting. Your exposition would be improved by linking later discussion to victim numbers at start, also by clearer division into sections. Not clear how the later discussion relates to victims in truck. Footnoting sources of everything for future reference is very important as I can assure you that it will be hard to retrace everything two years from now.

    Your headers are in same font as bold in paragraphs, which gives a busy appearance and makes it harder to follow for someone not familiar with the details. I mention these presentation issues because the content is interesting.

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  2. right hand picture of Hind Imad al-Deen al-Qadah, age 5 is (following a reference from your prior post) was included in Sophie McNeill tweet https://twitter.com/Sophiemcneill/status/849151622223736833 at 06:48UTC April 4, so there's a post quem on it. Long shadows as well.

    Same tweet includes washing from cave compound.

    Aren't floor tiles identifiable from other sources?

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    1. MacNeill is one of just a few to post the head wounds photo. The tiles aren't tied to any other scene yet, but I should keep an eye out for any links we missed.

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  3. Have you been able to identify which verified Sarin victim is shown in the videos?

    OPCW report clues for convenience:
    "5.96 Amongst the video footage reviewed by the team, there were scenes in which one of the deceased from the autopsy was also shown in the footage


    All three were pronounced dead on 5 April 2017

    the bodies were intact ... one victim having been intubated, [all three] showed no signs of traumatic injury

    IHD indicated from the names that two of the fatalities from the three autopsies were initially transferred from Syria to [Turkey] for treatment"

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    1. To some extent, bodies are linked with provided names, which may or may not be true. But without specifics, we can't say which ones they might refer to.

      "The bodies were intact," so not among those hacked up by the Islamists. Well that's useful, if not uniform.

      If 2 of 3 autopsied were transferred from Syria, where did the other come from? I guess Syria as well, just not recorded by IHD (Idlib Health Directorate)?

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  4. Yes sorry, you're right -just not recorded, other part is more helpful quote -

    "these three people were transferred from Syria to hospitals in a neighbouring country prior to their deaths and subsequent autopsies."

    Sorry for off topic question, but am I right in thinking the Ammar Abdullah photo is the earliest one of the actual scene? https://img.tsn.ua/cached/1491311513/tsn-8f26524e6da81d4b3cfbee3f2194473a/thumbs/x/75/d2/2734e60123225e15e8ac10f734b1d275.jpeg

    If so, is there a definite date and time on this photo? So many vehicles have driven right next to the crater they've made a clear/dry line.. I'm guessing the info is all on ACLOS but I can't seem to find

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    1. And this is the very earliest video? at ~1 min https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ENYMbNqHX_c

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    2. I still can't find this on ACLOS but using http://www.suncalc.org/#/35.45,36.6488,19/2017.04.04/08:46/5.5/2 and measuring, I get 8:45am for the video and with less accurate measuring ~10am for the photo. Interesting in context of the witness testimony.

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    3. ~10:30-11am-ish for the photo, 10 is probably a bit early

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    4. Having read the ACLOS report I see the earliest photo is the ~9am one referenced by HRW
      https://pbs.twimg.com/media/C8q6iFJWAAA92Y5.jpg

      So both Orient News and the White Helmets were there, Al Arabiya / Ammar Abdullah about an hour and a half later, Halab Today did an interview after that and then sometime after midday Hadi Abdullah tells us they "were not allowed to be here earlier as the gas smell was spread all over this area".

      After 500 victims and people fainting as they drove past, apart from the 'road block' just meters from the crater (which most seem to just drive around), it looks like regular traffic in the background of all the photos and videos. Doesn't appear to be closed off as described by Hadi or the OPCW's gov. witness.

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    5. Hey, I've been busy on other things. Coming back to this, glad you found some answers yourself. I recall timing a photo to about 9am, and no one seems to be dying. Doesn't seem terribly closed off in the images I've seen. Maybe it was at one point, Hadi extended the ban on his own to be safe and didn't mention that, who knows. So I suppose any apparent contradictions will be subjective, considering unknowns like that.

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    6. Orient News English tractor video is better quality than the Arabic version that I think is pictured in the ACLOS report by the way - not sure why they are different.

      I saw the guy from Bellingcat explaining away danger through sample collection being 24 hours later.. but these are videos from just a few hours later. Late morning no-one in the background seems concerned https://youtu.be/KJcQ9WIwEXA?t=178

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    7. Sorry for not making my comments concise -

      I was really looking for footage filmed by people named in the JFL report:

      "Many journalists- including [Anas Thyab] -went to the impact site. Abdulkadir Bakri, Qassion News Agency reporter, along with Abd Kuntar, Anadola Agency reporter, Mohammed Hassan Aldghaim, Aleppo Today reporter, and I, all went back to center after filming the site. We all started to show symptoms, except Mohammed Hassan Aldghaim"

      Footage credited to those people will be from a time when the crater is still alleged to be putting people in hospital. Anas Thyab/Al-Diab the White Helmet's media activist appeared in that Orient News tractor video having supposedly been sent to hospital and then discharged.

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    8. Okay, footage: the agencies are named, so you could check what footage they got.

      Sarin/chemical persistence: I'm agnostic about sarin at the site, at the time, but considering even the Syrian government says it turned up, it's quite likely. It's true that next-day collection should be only a bit dangerous. It's lots of airborne particles that will kill you, and these evaporate away like water within a couple of hours, or so I've picked up. After that, you would not want to stick your unprotected hand into any shady soil, but otherwise it should be safe to visit without even a face mask by about 9am, and surely by noon. Why samples could still turn up: you dig under the surface, on the backsides of things, etc.

      Other chemicals possibly used will have different properties, but the concept might be about the same. So I don't put much stock in lack of protective hear and such as evidence against sarin. In some specific cases, maybe, but not as the general issue many have made of it.

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    9. I didn't have much luck finding their footage. I believe this is (probably) Abd Kuntar https://www.instagram.com/abd.kuntar.idleb/ and the Qasioun News Youtube channel seems to have been shut down.

      Even if possible to visit the site unharmed, I think it is still important to put what is seen in the context of 500 victims and (assume for the sake of argument true) everyone within 100 metres having died. The locals can't reasonably be expected to be experts in Sarin persistence and in any case they didn't even know that it was Sarin.. just that everyone who went near it died or ended up in hospital.

      At 9am there was still supposedly an ambulance full of unconscious victims there, it isn't a long time after a large scale emergency so surprising they filmed nothing but a hole in the road.

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    10. .. and of course the Idlib Health Directorate go to collect some soil and leave the street covered in used gloves. But 500 victims leave no trace to be seen or filmed.

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    11. To correct myself, the Qasioun Youtube is still there but still can't seem to see footage from the site on the 4th. I'll keep searching.

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    12. Using info from ACLOS they allege the journalists were injured at 9am or later:

      http://aa.com.tr/en/corporate-news/anadolu-agency-reporter-recalls-horror-of-idlib-attack/790051

      "Abdurauf Kantar, who arrived in Idlib’s town of Khan Shaykun on Tuesday a full two hours after the attack, was nevertheless taken to hospital after showing symptoms of gas exposure."


      http://www.qasioun.net/en/news/show/59723/Qasioun_Correspondent_Was_Injured_By_The_Chemical_Attack_On_Khan_Sheikon

      This image of Abdulkader Bakry in "Idlib Hospital" says it was modified 4 April 2017, 10:06:42

      http://api.qasioun.net/public/images/tinymce/daeaa9c5f8dfbb69f25bfa659898bcd9.jpg

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    13. A few final thoughts on this (just looking at the OPCW version of events):

      The al-Khaled front door is quite distinctive, possible to locate the house? https://www.syriacare.org.my/2017/04/13/the-child-mustafa-anas-al-khalid-the-only-survival/

      (Mustafa was listed as dead by HRW, proof I suppose that their report is perhaps not that reliable)

      The man with a child on his shoulders with the red sign who protested in Idlib on that day looks just like Anas al-Khaled, a relative?

      https://youtu.be/JG3-k6-NniE?t=18

      Living picture and the body of Anas al-Khaled is shown in the JFL report by the way, he has more chest hair and less beard than the man in the White Helmets video linked on ACLOS.

      There are so many victims if anyone who has been researching were so inclined, a rough timeline with pictures would really help. It could also be compared against the time it would take a cloud of sarin to float down the hill (as the OPCW seems to think) and also against the possible time it would take to find, rescue, treat victims, times in testimony etc.

      The casualties of the conventional bombing would be interesting to find as they can be placed at one of the impact points at an exact time.

      OPCW found someone who had been blown up that day, but somehow avoided the sarin:

      "one of the ten casualties from the samples taken in hospitals appeared to have trauma-related injuries and further noted that his blood and urine tested negative for sarin or sarin-like substances."

      Ali Omar's wife in the JFL report equally says the family from al-Latamnah city survived

      "The father was killed in the raids and two others from the same [family] were injured. There is no way to determine to where they have been displaced."

      If the cloud sets off down the hill towards them at 6:37am how do they then all apparently avoid it when the houses are blown up, they are injured etc.?

      HRW says "A few people appear to have died from blast and fragmentation injuries from the attacks during the second fly-over. Raslan, the Syria Civil Defense member, said that the attacks with explosive weapons killed his neighbor, the neighbor's son, and the 15-year-old boy he had tried to help." As Ismail Raslan is the man who heard "the wind and the roar from a bomb falling" or maybe a "swooping sound, as made by a jet when it attacks" the 15 year old is the 12 year old mentioned by the OPCW.

      So Raslan's house must be near the al-Omar house for the boy to have died from the "explosive" attacks. Not that Raslan's story is very believable.

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    14. Man, you're making some progress on this compared to me. I've been taking a needed 90% flake break.

      Nothing to add on victim correlation.

      The Khaled door could be matched to a family rescue from their home scene, if there were any. From anything else, possible, but I don't know of any.

      Anas Khaled match: not seeing it - those look like quite different guys to me. Compaing to p. 28 here. https://www.stj-sy.com/uploads/pdf_files/A%20Special%20Report%20on%20the%20Chemical%20Attack%20in%20Khan%20Sheikhoun%20-%20Idlib.pdf

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    15. OK, on page 33 he's seen with a superficial resemblance due to the glasses, but still different: face shape, hairline (as can be seen), eyebrows, and facial hair density all seem different. But that's on a quick look, and not 100%.

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    16. It was the page 33 picture I was looking at
      http://imgur.com/mETrzXg

      I just thought they might be related, another Khaled brother.

      It might be useful to work out where Osama's house is on this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l8PLFBXuVps from minarets maybe. Just to know how far he had to travel to his brother's house - by the time he gets there they're all affected and lying down outside the house, interesting for time vs cloud travel.. if anyone finds that front door.

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    17. To avoid filling up your comments I'm having a go at the timeline, I thought maybe something like this https://onemorninginsyria.blogspot.com/p/blog-page.html?token=rS80fF0BAAA.Sge9V_mytTXPR34KhS6PeqdpU1wMpyWxiFjsfBZ-TiucoZ7_cC8vlhcvvBn8R2cuOGmpqpTlabNx-0nVkMj8_A.dxPkQXFTyOS2JGQGzTZ-5g&postId=303400604611497384&type=PAGE

      There was actually no need to locate Osama's house, he says when he arrived as that was when first exposed to the chemicals ~7am

      Abdurrauf Kantar's account of what was going on at the scene is very interesting

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    18. Pasted wrong link.

      https://onemorninginsyria.blogspot.co.uk/

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  5. To come back on the first comment: yes, 'outsiders' do not have the knowlegde ACLOS has, and if possible for ACLOS to do so, it would be intresting to have a better situation of the wounded children in the total of the events, and to give all what is known about them through your findings. On Abdulrahman : to me the one picture seems to be a younger child than the other one, but pictures of the same person cam be very different, for the rest it seems to be him on both the pictures, he has somehow like one front tooth that comes out of his lip, and has his form of mouth and the expression it gives, and this is the same on the two pictures. About the reason of harming-killing the children and filming them, I dont know about the relation between the different persons or pressrepresentatives who filmed the scenes, but the ones coming from the WH do not show harmed children, only very pale children between life and dead(is this right ?), which does not mean it was not them who are the culprits, on the contrary, but other films might be a hidden protest (?). On the other hand, except for ACLOS nobody indeed in the press looked at these wounded children and tried to find out about them, so the ones who perpetrated these crimes and let them be filmed could be thinking nobody would pay attention to these facts,or could be thinking that it would not come to the mind of the ones, who would see it, that the children were harmed by the ones who present themselves as being the ones who try to save them. And off course from the first minute everybody is already shouting that Assad is (again) killing his people with a CW attack.

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    1. Thanks, good thoughts. It's sad, but they're right to think no one of influence would expose their crimes. It's the historical norm, and they pay attention to that, and know they remain unaccountable, and so "Assad" keeps killing whole families in the areas the "rebels" operate.

      Possible age difference: As you wonder, I think it's just a different pictures problem. Changes in lighting, angles create different impressions that color your assessment. On the right, he has a more manly chin, braving the world and taking its scrapes, compared to the helpless cheeky baby at left. That's why I look at firm structural things, especially hairline, ears, any distinctive birthmarks, etc. In those, he matches, so whichever perceived age it is, it could be and must be the same in both images.

      But another issue arises in this case: he also died in between images, and had his face mauled. At first he's might be effecting a face like some do, (sort of pleading or maybe hopelessly past that). Not clear. And later his face would be more blank. That makes me realize the same half-open eye probably can't mean much. Duh. The kids in the truck are mainly alive, not certain if he is. Coincidentally, his eyes closed the same amount after he died.

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