News

World

British Founder of Syrian ‘White Helmets’ Aid Organization Found Dead in Istanbul

Turkish police officers stand outisde the home office of James Le Mesurier in Istanbul, Turkey, November 11, 2019. (Kemal Aslan/Reuters)

James Le Mesurier, co-founder of the Syrian Civil Defense aid organization in Syria, also known as the White Helmets, was found dead on Monday near his apartment in Istanbul.

According to reports, Le Mesurier, 48, appeared to have fallen from a balcony and was found with multiple fractures in his head and legs. The Istanbul Governor’s Office said “comprehensive administrative and judicial investigations” into his death were underway.

“The family of the Syrian Civil Defense extends its deepest condolences to his family, and we express our deepest sorrow and solidarity with his family, as it is our duty to commend his humanitarian efforts, which the Syrians will always remember,” the Syrian Civil Defense wrote on its Facebook page.

Last week, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova accused Le Mesurier of being a former British intelligence agent who was “spotted all around the world, including in the Balkans and the Middle East.”

“Given the role of the West in undermining stability in these regions, it is not difficult to assume what the British intelligence officer did there,” Zakharova said.

Le Mesurier founded Mayday Rescue, a nonprofit group that organized and trained the Syrian Civil Defense, a volunteer disaster-response organization that has saved thousands of lives in the aftermath of Russian and Syrian government attacks during the Syrian civil war. The organization’s members wore white construction helmets, which gave the group its nickname.

“These are ordinary individuals,” Le Mesurier said in a 2014 interview with BBC. “Former bakers, former builders, former students who had choices for what they were going to do with their lives within the revolution.”

The White Helmets documented evidence of war crimes, including chemical weapons attacks, in addition to pulling civilians from rubble after airstrikes on buildings. The organization was the target of an online Russian disinformation campaign that painted its members as Al Qaeda operatives.

Most Popular

Law & the Courts

The FBI’s Corrupt Cops

White-collar criminals should hope for one thing this Christmas: that they get to live under the Horowitz rules. Michael Horowitz has testified that he found no evidence of political bias on the part of the decision makers who, under the Obama administration, relied on hilariously implausible “evidence” ... Read More
Law & the Courts

The FBI’s Corrupt Cops

White-collar criminals should hope for one thing this Christmas: that they get to live under the Horowitz rules. Michael Horowitz has testified that he found no evidence of political bias on the part of the decision makers who, under the Obama administration, relied on hilariously implausible “evidence” ... Read More
Elections

Diversity Panic Hits the Democratic Field

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. An Asian guy, two black guys, three white women (one of whom spent much of her life claiming to be Native American), a Pacific Islander woman, a gay guy, a Hispanic guy, two elderly Caucasian Jews (one a billionaire, the other a socialist), a self-styled Irishman, and a ... Read More
Elections

Diversity Panic Hits the Democratic Field

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. An Asian guy, two black guys, three white women (one of whom spent much of her life claiming to be Native American), a Pacific Islander woman, a gay guy, a Hispanic guy, two elderly Caucasian Jews (one a billionaire, the other a socialist), a self-styled Irishman, and a ... Read More
Film & TV

A Film for All Christians

‘The growing good of the world is partly dependent on unhistoric acts,” wrote George Eliot in Middlemarch, “and that things are not so ill with you and me as they might have been, is half owing to the number who lived faithfully a hidden life, and rest in unvisited tombs.” The passage provides the title ... Read More
Film & TV

A Film for All Christians

‘The growing good of the world is partly dependent on unhistoric acts,” wrote George Eliot in Middlemarch, “and that things are not so ill with you and me as they might have been, is half owing to the number who lived faithfully a hidden life, and rest in unvisited tombs.” The passage provides the title ... Read More
White House

Is Trump the Only Adult in the Room?

Donald Trump certainly is mercurial at times. He can be uncouth. But then again, no president in modern memory has been on the receiving end of such overwhelmingly negative media coverage and a three-year effort to abort his presidency, beginning the day after his election. Do we remember the effort to ... Read More
White House

Is Trump the Only Adult in the Room?

Donald Trump certainly is mercurial at times. He can be uncouth. But then again, no president in modern memory has been on the receiving end of such overwhelmingly negative media coverage and a three-year effort to abort his presidency, beginning the day after his election. Do we remember the effort to ... Read More