Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.

Western Officials Confirm Israeli Strike as Syrian Allies Condemn Israel

January 31, 2013 9:40 am 0 comments

Israeli Air Force fighter jets. Photo: Wikipedia

Israeli warplanes carried out a strike on the outskirts of Damascus, Syria American officials told the New York Times, saying that they believed the target was a convoy carrying sophisticated antiaircraft weaponry that was intended for the Hezbollah Shiite terror militia in Lebanon. The American officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said Israel had notified the United States about the attack beforehand.

On Wednesday Syria confirmed the attack took place but said that the  target struck was a scientific research facility. But a Western official told the Wall Street Journal that the two reports might not be mutually exclusive.

Thursday, Israeli daily Maariv reported that officials close to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad have said the incident “will not go unpunished,” adding that “all the options of response to Israeli aggression are open.”

The Addiyar Daily Newspaper, published in Lebanon and considered to be  pro-Syrian, reported Thursday that Syrian army units have deployed in guerrilla-size formations in the Golan Heights, and the militaries of Syria, Lebanon and Jordan have gone on heightened alert following the strike.

Israel has remained silent on the incident, keeping with a longstanding policy not to comment on such reports, but several high level officials spoke to Israeli media Wednesday.

“If there indeed was an attack, then it would have been because red lines were crossed and you can’t draw red lines unless you guard them,” former Mossad head Danny Yatom told Army Radio.

Also speaking on Army Radio, Likud MK Tzahi Hanegbi, a former head of the powerful Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, said that, “Israel has always said that if sophisticated weapons coming from Iran, North Korea and Russia fell into the hands of Hezbollah, it would cross a red line.”

The Saudi Al-Watan newspaper reported Thursday that such instances have already occurred. The report quoted a rebel spokesperson as saying that transfers took place over a 40 day period in February and March 2012. The shipment included at least two tons of mustard gas, along with long range missiles that could reach within 300 kilometers into Israel that were capable of carrying chemical weapons.

Thursday, Russia, which has tried to shield the Syrian regime from international condemnation and threats during its bloody two-year civil war, released a statement through its Foreign Ministry, saying,  “If this information is confirmed, then we are dealing with unprovoked attacks on targets on the territory of a sovereign country, which blatantly violates the UN Charter and is unacceptable, no matter the motives to justify it.”

Lebanese terror group Hezbollah, which has been aiding the Syrian regime on the ground, also came to their defense, saying, “the attack exposes the background to what has been going on in Syria for years, and the criminal intention to destroy Syria and its army, and undermine its central role on the resistance front.”

It urged a “re-examination” by Syrian rebels  of “their stance and to adopt political dialogue as the only basis to a solution meant to end the shedding of Syrian blood, in order to keep Syria and protect its role in the fight against the enemies.”

Iran’s Foreign Minister said Thursday “There is no doubt that this aggression is part of a Western and Zionist,” strategy to “push aside the success of the Syrian people and government to return to stability and security.”

Lebanon’s foreign minister  called on Arab states to “confront Israel in every possible legal way.”

Minister Adnan Mansour said the Israeli strike was “blunt aggression which we strongly condemn.”

The Arab League also responded to the report accusing the international community of encouraging Israel’s actions by keeping silent. The league demanded that Syria be compensated for the damage and loss of lives.

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition. Comments written in all caps will be deleted.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Blogs Sports Two Decades Before Cleveland’s First NBA Title, LeBron James Walked Onto a JCC Court

    Two Decades Before Cleveland’s First NBA Title, LeBron James Walked Onto a JCC Court

    JNS.org – The seed for the city of Cleveland’s first professional championship in a major sport in 52 years may have been planted at the Shaw Jewish Community Center on White Pond Drive in Akron, Ohio, nearly 20 years ago. That’s when a tall, lanky kid from Akron named LeBron James walked onto the hardwood court and changed the game of basketball forever. Coach Keith Dambrot, now the head basketball coach at the University of Akron, conducted those sessions that attracted […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Blogs North American Studios Look to Israel for Next Animation Hit

    North American Studios Look to Israel for Next Animation Hit

    JNS.org – In 2008, Yoram Honig was a producer and director living in Jerusalem, fresh off his first international hit, when the Jerusalem Development Authority (JDA) came to him with a challenge: build a film industry from scratch in Israel’s capital. “When we started here, was nothing in Jerusalem,” he said during an interview in his office in the Talbiya neighborhood. Now, the Jerusalem Film and Television Fund, which Honig heads as an arm of the JDA, pumps 9 million shekels […]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Sports Olympic Gold Medalist Gabby Douglas to Wear Leotard With Hebrew Letters in National Competition

    Olympic Gold Medalist Gabby Douglas to Wear Leotard With Hebrew Letters in National Competition

    Olympic gold medalist Gabby Douglas will wear a leotard bearing Hebrew lettering when she competes at the P&G Gymnastics Championships over the weekend. Douglas’ Swarovski-outlined outfit will feature the Hebrew word “Elohim,” meaning God, on its left sleeve. The Hebrew detailing honors the athlete’s “rich heritage of faith,” according to apparel manufacturer GK Elite, which produced the leotard and released a preview of it on Wednesday. The company said Douglas’ sister, Joyelle “Joy” Douglas, created the Hebrew design. The outcome of the P&G Championships will help […]

    Read more →
  • Europe Sports British World Heavyweight Champion Should Be Banned From Boxing for Sounding Like Hitler, Says Ukrainian Competitor

    British World Heavyweight Champion Should Be Banned From Boxing for Sounding Like Hitler, Says Ukrainian Competitor

    Britain’s world heavyweight champion, Taylor Fury, should be banned from boxing for making Nazi-like comments, a former world champion from the Ukraine said on Thursday, ahead of their upcoming match. “I was in shock at his statements about women, the gay community, and when he got to the Jewish people, he sounded like Hitler,” Wladimir Klitschko told British media, according to Reuters. “We cannot have a champion like that. Either he needs to be shut up or shut down in the ring, or […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Rabbi Shows Cooking Skills and Humor on Chopped

    Rabbi Shows Cooking Skills and Humor on Chopped

    Rabbi Hanoch Hecht just made television history; but, unfortunately, he couldn’t have his rugelach and eat it too. Hecht became the first rabbi to compete on the hit show “Chopped,” where contestants are forced to use four random ingredients in their recipes, and have 20-30 minutes to create an appetizer, a main course and a dessert. A contestant is eliminated after each round. Hecht, 32, said that while the dishes and utensils were new, the kitchen was not kosher, so he couldn’t taste […]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Music Orthodox Entertainer Stars in Pepsi Max Commercial as New Face of Company’s Israel Campaign (VIDEO)

    Orthodox Entertainer Stars in Pepsi Max Commercial as New Face of Company’s Israel Campaign (VIDEO)

    Orthodox singer and entertainer Lipa Schmeltzer is starring in a new Pepsi Max commercial for the company’s campaign in Israel. The commercial begins with a bunch of Jewish men eating at a restaurant, when Schmeltzer walks in and tries to decide what to order. An employee at the obviously Israeli eatery offers him a variety of foods, but the entertainer in the end decides on a bottle of Pepsi. Everyone in the restaurant then joins him, drinking Pepsi Max and dancing to […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Book Reviews Jewish Author’s ‘Messy’ Draft Transforms Into Rock Star Novel on Amazon

    Jewish Author’s ‘Messy’ Draft Transforms Into Rock Star Novel on Amazon

    JNS.org – “Writing is a messy process,” says author Elizabeth Poliner. “People who don’t write fiction would be surprised to see what early drafts could look like.” But readers wouldn’t know “what a mess it was for the longest time,” as the Jewish author puts it, when reading Poliner’s critically acclaimed latest book, As Close to Us as Breathing. The volume garnered Amazon’s “Best Book” designation in March 2016 as well as rave reviews from the New York Times,W Magazine, NPR, […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Blogs Sundance Tour Features Short Film About Elderly Jewish Woman’s Decision to Eat Bacon for First Time

    Sundance Tour Features Short Film About Elderly Jewish Woman’s Decision to Eat Bacon for First Time

    The Sundance Film Festival Short Film Tour, which started on Friday in New York City, features a mini-documentary about an elderly Jewish woman whose journey away from Orthodoxy leads her to taste forbidden food for the first time in her life. In Canadian director Sol Friedman’s Bacon & God’s Wrath, Razie Brownstone talks about ending her lifelong observance of keeping kosher as her 90th birthday approaches. The recently declared atheist said the discovery of the search engine Google spurred a lapse in her Jewish faith and made her decide to […]

    Read more →