Consortium News has the article NYT Retreats on 2013 Syria-Sarin Claims. In analyzing the most recent gas attack, the article has this to say.
While it’s conceivable that Assad’s military is guilty – although why Assad would take this risk at this moment is hard to fathom – it’s also conceivable that Al Qaeda’s jihadists – finding themselves facing impending defeat – chose to stage a sarin attack even if that meant killing some innocent civilians.
Al Qaeda’s goal would be to draw in the U.S. or Israeli military against the Syrian government, creating space for a jihadist counteroffensive. And, as we should all recall, it’s not as if Al Qaeda hasn’t killed many innocent civilians before.
I don’t think Al Qaeda has to work very hard to draw in the U.S. or Israeli military against the Syrian government. These two governments have been itching to do this anyway. The US CIA has been overthrowing Syrian governments since 1949 at least.
As an aside, I was afraid that this article was going to report a New York Times story recanting their stories about the 2013 attack. That would be a real paradox for me since I don’t believe much of what the New York Times reports on foreign affairs, how could I believe a retraction? To my relief, The New York Times did not retreat by explicit statesent. The retreat comes from omitting the 2013 attack from their summary of all the evil things that Assad has done in Syria.