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May 1, 2013 10:08 am

Former IDF Chief Ashkenazi on Syrian Chemical Threat: “Doing Nothing is Not an Option” (VIDEO)

avatar by Max Elstein Keisler

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Former IDF chief Gabi Ashkenazi. Photo: Screenshot.

Former IDF Chief Gabi Ashkenazi told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour Sunday that “doing nothing is not an option,” when it comes to the threat posed by the Syrian chemical weapons arsenal and described several ways that intervention in Syria could occur. Western powers could “help the opposition in more concrete ways,” like providing them with weapons, or imposing a no fly zone over at least part of Syria, he said.

Ashkenazi said that the fall of Bashar Al-Assad would benefit Israel, although he described it as a “mixed picture.” In Ashkenazi’s view, “if Assad falls, it breaks the radical axis from Iran to Damascus to Hezbollah and Hamas. It would be a major blow to Iran and Hezbollah, and Hezbollah would be more restrained […] Syria was and still is the logistic hub of Hezbollah, and most of the weaponry Hezbollah possesses came from Syrian depots.”

Ashkenazi added that the right time to help the Syrian opposition was “a year ago, maybe a year and a half ago, when we had 10,000 dead, and less foreigners coming from Chechnya, or Iraq,” less Al-Qaeda affiliated people.

Watch the video of the interview below.

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