US: Sarin bombs ready for Assad’s “go” order. Israel’s odd silence

Thursday, December 6, 2012
By Paul Martin

December 6, 2012

American officials said Wednesday, Dec. 4, that they believed bombs had been made ready with sarin gas, but not yet loaded onto fighter planes and Assad had not issued the “go” order. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton warned President Assad once again that he would be crossing “a red line” if he used nerve gas against the country’s rebels. But “there’s little the outside world can do to stop it.”
In answer to US allegations, Syrian spokesmen reiterated that their government would not use chemical weapons against its own people.
This statement leaves wide open the possible use of lethal gas against the countries supporting the Syrian rebels, such as Turkey and Jordan. And indeed, the Assad regime has in the past referred to “external enemies” as possible targets of chemical warfare.
This locution undoubtedly covers Israel. Yet against the flood of information and warnings coming from the United States, Israel is strangely silent and its media are officially discouraged from tracking the Syrian chemical weapons menace.
Surprise was voiced in some Israeli defense and military quarters, when the prime minister, the defense minister and other key ministers traveled to Europe Wednesday for visits to Prague and Berlin, at a time when Israel’s northern border with Syria might be targeted for a chemical attack.
Although it was only a 48-hour absence – they return Friday – Binyamin Netanyahu and Ehud Barak are holding to an outward attitude of coolly controling the situation, in contrast to the Turkish government which has prepared itself for possible attack – and not only with defensive measures. Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu remarked Wednesday that the Syrian regime has 700 missiles whose location, storage method and holders are no secret to Ankara. This was a veiled threat to destroy them.

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