IDF Chief in U.S. to Discuss Syria Chemical Weapons

February 3, 2013 12:54 pm 1 comment

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey meets with Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz, Chief of General Staff of the Israeli Defense Forces in Israel in January, 2012. Photo: Wikipedia

Israel Defense Force Chief of Staff Benny Gantz arrived in Washington, D.C., Sunday as the guest of his US counterpart, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Martin Dempsey.

A statement released by an IDF spokesperson said that the two  “will conduct a series of work meetings together, as well as meetings with other American officials. They will also discuss current security challenges, the regional security status in the Middle East and military cooperation.”

Sources in Israel’s security establishment told Israeli daily Yediot  Ahronot that during the five-day trip the two sides will deal primarily with developments and possible risks stemming from the civil war in Syria. The main issue will be how  the United States and Israel will deal jointly in the case that rebels or Hezbollah take control of chemical weapons now in the hands of the Syrian army.

Yediot Ahronot also reports that Western sources have indicated that Israel, the United States and possibly NATO would carry out air operations and even use ground forces to prevent chemical and biological weapons from falling into the hands of rebels or Hezbollah.

The meeting comes amidst mounting tension in the Middle East. Reports surfaced last week that Israel had struck a weapons convoy in Syria overnight Tuesday. In a rare move Syria confirmed an attack had taken place but said that the target was a scientific research center. Despite silence on the part of Israeli officials it was later reported by TIME magazine that Israel had struck multiple targets.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad responded to last week’s alleged Israeli strike for the first time on Sunday while speaking with Iranian envoy Saeed Jalili in Damascus. He said that Israel’s aggression “exposes the true role conducted by Israel in collaboration with the external forces hostile [to Syria] in destabilizing security in Syria and weakening it so that it forgoes its national principles.”

Assad said after the meeting that “Syria, with the power of its army and adherence to resistance, is able to confront all the current threats and curb any aggression against the Syrian army and its historical and cultural role.”

Also Sunday, Defense Minister Ehud Barak was the first Israeli official to make public mention of the airstrike/s  in Syria.

Barak brought the issue up at a gathering of the world’s top diplomats and defense officials in Germany, initially saying: “I cannot add anything to what you have read in the newspapers about what happened in Syria several days ago.”

But, addressing the audience in English, he added: “I keep telling frankly that we said – and that’s proof when we said something we mean it – we say that we don’t think it should be allowed to bring advanced weapons systems into Lebanon.”

1 Comment

  • Dr. Greg Maloney,Ph.D.

    Syria is a festering plaque and pox ridden boil that is about to explode. Since smallpox vaccinations are no longer given regularly,the world’s population is a sitting duck for the rapid spread of this infectious virus.

    It is past time to militarily neutralize these germ agents, as well as to crank up serious global prevention and treatment programs that are more just window dressing.

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Arts and Culture US & Canada ‘Death of Klinghoffer’ Actress Compares Met Opera to ‘Schindler’s List’

    ‘Death of Klinghoffer’ Actress Compares Met Opera to ‘Schindler’s List’

    An actress starring in the controversial Met Opera The Death of Klinghoffer defended the show on Tuesday by comparing it to the 1993 Holocaust film Schindler’s List, New York Post reported. “To me, this was like [the movie] Schindler’s List. We make art so people won’t forget,’’ said the actress, who plays a captured passenger in the show and asked not to be identified. The Met Opera focuses on the infamous murder of Lower East Side Jewish resident Leon Klinghoffer, 69. The wheelchair-bound father of [...]

    Read more →
  • Analysis Arts and Culture Beyond ‘Klinghoffer’: Opera’s Composer, Librettist Have Broader Jewish Problem

    Beyond ‘Klinghoffer’: Opera’s Composer, Librettist Have Broader Jewish Problem

    JNS.org – One of the most controversial operas in recent memory, “The Death of Klinghoffer,” debuted Oct. 20 at New York’s Metropolitan Opera. The Met has scheduled seven more performances through November. The first staging did not occur without protest, as about 400 demonstrators—including Jewish communal and nationally recognized leaders—came to Lincoln Center to denounce the anti-Jewish and anti-Israel opera. “Klinghoffer,” the creation of composer John Adams and librettist Alice Goodman, premiered in 1991—with few additional stagings. The opera is based [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture US & Canada Israeli Actress Gal Gadot in Talks to Star in Ben-Hur Remake

    Israeli Actress Gal Gadot in Talks to Star in Ben-Hur Remake

    Israeli actress Gal Gadot is in negotiations to take on the female lead role in the remake of the 1959 classic Ben-Hur, according to The Hollywood Reporter. If the deal is finalized Gadot will play Esther, a slave and Ben-Hur’s love interest. Actor Jack Huston will star as the Jewish prince who is betrayed into slavery by his childhood friend Messala, played by Toby Kebbell. Ben-Hur fights for his freedom and vengeance with the help of Morgan Freeman’s character, who trains Ben-Hur how to win at chariot-racing. [...]

    Read more →
  • Jewish Identity Sports Young Israelis Try to Crowd-Fund Their Way to Major League Baseball Playoffs

    Young Israelis Try to Crowd-Fund Their Way to Major League Baseball Playoffs

    JNS.org – Baseball, hot dogs, and apple pie are the American dream. So why do two young men who have built their lives in Israel have a GoFundMe crowd-funding webpage with the urgent message that they need $3,000 to travel to the U.S. to watch the Kansas City Royals and Baltimore Orioles square off for Major League Baseball’s (MLB) American League championship? Brothers Naftali and Yoni Schwartz, 27 and 25, respectively, are Kansas City natives. Even though they made aliyah with their [...]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Sports Race Cars Speed Through Jerusalem in Amazing Exhibition

    Race Cars Speed Through Jerusalem in Amazing Exhibition

    Some 3,000 years ago, King David probably never imagined cars racing at 240 kilometers per hour (150 miles per hour) through the ancient capital of the Jewish people. But on Monday and Tuesday, October 6-7, thousands of Israelis lined the streets to watch Porsche, Audi, and Ferrari race cars fly through the capital against the backdrop of the Tower of David, the Old City Walls, and other city landmarks. The second annual non-competitive Jerusalem Formula One Road Show had been [...]

    Read more →
  • Israel Sports NBA Superstar LeBron James Says He Wants to Visit Israel

    NBA Superstar LeBron James Says He Wants to Visit Israel

    Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James expressed interest in visiting Israel someday, local news site Cleveland.com reported on Sunday. Speaking to Israeli reporters before the Cleveland Cavaliers’ preseason debut against Maccabi Tel Aviv, the NBA star said he had never visited the Jewish state but “I want to look forward to going there if I get an opportunity to.” When asked by an Israeli reporter if there was “any chance that LeBron James and Cleveland comes to Tel Aviv,” the athlete said [...]

    Read more →
  • Sports US & Canada Florida Rabbi Dominates Former Basketball Star Congressman in Hoops Showdown (VIDEO)

    Florida Rabbi Dominates Former Basketball Star Congressman in Hoops Showdown (VIDEO)

    A Florida-based Chabad rabbi put former basketball star, U.S. Congressman Curt Clawson to shame on the court when the two faced off one-on-one recently. A YouTube video, posted online on Tuesday, shows Rabbi Fishel Zaklos of Chabad of Naples shooting hoops with the Florida politician, who played basketball in high school and at Purdue University in Indiana. The game took place in the parking lot of the Chabad Jewish center run by Zaklos. During the 1-minute clip, Zaklos scores two impressive [...]

    Read more →
  • Sports US & Canada David Blatt’s Cleveland Cavaliers Rout Maccabi Tel Aviv, 107-80

    David Blatt’s Cleveland Cavaliers Rout Maccabi Tel Aviv, 107-80

    JNS.org – Less than five months after leading Maccabi Tel Aviv to its sixth European basketball title, David Blatt, now the head coach of the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers, routed his former team in an exhibition game on Sunday, with the Cavaliers dominating Maccabi 107-80 at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland. The 20,562 fans in attendance witnessed Lebron James’s first appearance in a Cavaliers uniform since he left the club in free agency for the Miami Heat four years ago. [...]

    Read more →



Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.