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August 25, 2013 1:47 pm

Netanyahu Ties Syria Chemical Attack to Iran, Says Assad is ‘Full Iranian Client’

avatar by Joshua Levitt

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Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday tied reports of a mass chemical attack in Syria to “Iran, and Iran’s proxy, Hezbollah,” who, he said, “are there on the ground playing an active role assisting Syria.”

“Assad’s regime has become a full Iranian client” Netanyahu said, while “Syria has become Iran’s testing ground” to assess the world’s “reaction on the use of chemical weapons.”

Netanyahu said that the tragedy in Syria, where more than 100,000 people have died, was minor compared to what might happen if Iran were allowed to acquire even more deadly weapons.

“This demonstrates, yet again, that we simply cannot allow the world’s most dangerous regimes to acquire the world’s most dangerous weapons. In the end, the extremists use these weapons. So we must prevent them from having these weapons,” he said. “I speak here of course in the context of Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons. Iran must not be allowed to get nuclear weapons. What is happening in Syria, simply demonstrates what will happen if Iran gets even deadlier weapons.”

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“What we see in Syria is how extremist regimes have no reservations whatsoever about using these weapons even when they use it against innocent civilians, against their own people,” Netanyahu said.

At the start of a meeting with France’s Foreign Minister, Laurent Fabius, Prime Minister Netanyahu, who is also Israel’s acting Foreign Minister, said: “I know that France shares our interest in the ongoing events in Syria that are tragic. I think what is going on there is a crime committed by the Syrian regime against its own people. It’s truly shocking. And these atrocities must stop.”

Netanyahu’s comments came amid increased concern in the region as representatives of international armies meet in Jordan to discuss a response after Syrian rebel forces claimed that Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad used chemical weapons in an attack on a rebel stronghold, in a suburb outside of Damascus, last week.

Netanyahu said the Israeli-Arab conflict is not at the core of regional unrest, but the result of the ongoing turmoil in the Arab world: “For too long people believed that the root cause of this instability in the Middle East was the Palestinian-Israeli problem. It is not the root cause; it’s one of its results. If we have peace with the Palestinians, the centrifuges will not stop spinning in Iran, the turmoil will not stop in Syria, the instability in North Africa will not cease, the attacks on the West will not cease.”

“We want peace for its own sake,” Netanyahu said, regarding peace talks between his government and the Palestinian Authority. But, the Prime Minister warned, “this will not put an end to the region’s problems. They are far too deep, they are far too many, they require much more complex solutions, but they require solutions.”

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  • mark mckee

    I have heard people say that we should not do anything in Syria .well here is my argument against that. In the first place if we were to do anything It should have been 2 years ago before the terrorist organizations were able to gain a foothold in the north and began governing the population in the north. Now al-queda has gotten into the north and does pose a direct threat to national security of the homeland of the United States of America. If Assad falls those chemical weapons fall into the hands of al-qaeda. I hear a big debate on the news about what is a couple of cruise missels going to do? slap the hand of Syria. They don’t want to overthrow Assad just knock him over. To me this is ludicrous we have more concrete evidence and a reason to go into Syria now than we did in Iraq in 2003.Asad has used chemical weapons on his own people al-queda has gained a foothold in the north. sending a couple of cruise missiles is not going to do anything except for to aid al-qaeda in getting into power there. As un popular as it is we do need boots on the ground in Syria. Being a veteran I do not say these words lightly. Have we forgotten 911 already the cost to this nation The Vow that was made to hunt down terrorist in all corners of the globe. here we have clear concise evidence that al-qaeda is gaining a foothold and beginning to govern people and that the existing regime has utilized chemical weapons. For us to simply send and a few cruise missiles and take out the syrian Air Force is foolish.this is not about being the world’s police. This is about protecting our liberty our freedom our population of the United States of America.

  • David Wise

    Russia’s refusal to sanction or even acquiesce in a military STRIKE WILL HAVE TO BE IGNORED IF Military strikes are now the only feasible option to suppress the Assad regime.

    ALSO we have to be 100 % certain the regime did use chemical warfare against its own people before the international community strikes back !!

  • Otto Waldmann in Sydney

    Even if Syria were not Iran’s “client”, Iran is a current and unaffordable danger to Israel.
    Regardless of what the UN, NATO or the Cannes Film Festival want to do about Syria, what Israel should do about Iran is NOT negotiable and there is no alternative left to tardive resolution.
    In the farcical exchanges of rhetoric, Iran will lie until (G-d forbid ) will start pushing buttons of destructions whereupon Israel should cease the palaver to make sure that the Iranian finger should never twitch.

  • Tony Minchew

    they will not listen to netanyahu. the Israeli people who are so very important do not remember
    2 Chronicles 7:14. ” IF MY PEOPLE WHO ARE CALLED BY MY NAME WILL HUMBLE THEMSELVES AND SEEK MY FACE, THEN I WILL HEAR FROM HEAVEN AND HEAL THEIR LAND.”
    do not waste time looking for a solution that does not exist within the human. man cannot fix himself much less this problem.
    there is a solution, it was rejected by Israel almost 2000 years ago. they still reject Him. what makes ANYONE THINK, that the only entity responsible for solving this problem will help those who reject Him.

    I love Israel and the Hebrew people and my prayer is that they return to God and receive His Son Jesus Christ.

    Tony

  • Vivienne Leijonhufvud

    Mr.Netanyahu has hit the nail on the head, Israel is at the centre of an Arab storm, that is the still centre where this is no wind or any other weather pattern. The so called Palestinians are a real pain in the butt as are the Gazans. Just go and join your arab brothers clear out of Israel and make trouble elsewhere. No what these arabs want is a turnkey operation, move in, chuck out Israeli people and appear to be what Israel is, a democratic thriving nation. I have no more patience with Gazans or Pals, they are so infuriating, I’d treat them as they behave, send them to the naughty corner until they stop having a tantrum. American spelling of center is incorrect, the root of this word is Latin/French it should be centre at least it was when I was at school.

  • This is a dangerous precedent and must be stopped.

  • Sandy Brown

    Yes, I believe that Iran has got its sticky little fingers in this mess. Hezbollah are Iranian-backed of course. Looks at the Muslim Brotherhood. It is bonkers to say that the rebels should be helped by O’Bummer(O’Bama)and Prime Minister, David Cameron. I am not a fan of Assad. Lots of people in London think that we should stay out of their war. It is not our war. We do not want to lose anymore young men as we have done in Afghanistan and for what. Afghanistan is full of minerals! And of course Opium! I think that we should nuke Iran off the map, but then that of course is just my opinion.

  • Luigi Rosolin

    On some web site claim that many YouTube video had been release just before the main one show and claim as the Syria use of chemical. Some are claim that some soldier of the regime had enter “rebels” tunnel and nearly got over power by gas. Who can trust the USA Obama administration that the gas had been used by the Regime? Rebel had access to them also and to win over the world media are capable as often both side do manipulate video or use against they people in a calculate manoeuvrings of the realty.Rebels Islamic had kill and cut the heart and eat from they victims, that is clearly indicating that they can do anything without any normal moral human sense.I’m very suspicious of Obama administration that had supported Morsi-Muslim Brotherhood all the way, in the face of the genocide of minority Christian and other moderate that had take 30 million of Egyptian standing against them in the square. Not sure what advantage will be for Israel of a Syria control my extremist Islamic rebels.

  • Efram Paul

    If only someone would listen to him!

  • aall55

    …..”Syrian rebel forces claimed that Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad used chemical weapons in an attack on a rebel stronghold, …”

    do we know what proportion are civilians and what is the % of al quaeda rebels ?

  • alin sebastian

    Netanyahu said: “This demonstrates, yet again, that we simply cannot allow the world’s most dangerous regimes [– Iran –] to acquire…”

    Unfortunatelly, besides Iran, there is a whole gang atop these dangerous regimes: North Korea (who is liable to arm Iran even more), Saudi Arabia, not to mention China (who is also liable to arm Iran even more)… and maybe U.S.A. (who at least today will not arm Iran even more).

    Oh, did I mention the EU and some of its members?

  • Michael

    Bibi, is loosing his touch. 1. No tragedy is ‘minor’ and cannot and should not be compared with any other. 2. More of the same rhetoric which increasingly sounds hollow in its repetition without any real consequence to Israel’s enemies.

    Pity this once savvy politician, didn’t quit while he was on top. Israel certainly needs new leadership!

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