Syria to Employ Hezbollah Strategy

Kurt Nimmo
Tuesday July 24, 2007

Back in October, 2005, the Mossad’s favorite propaganda source, DEBKAfile, fretted over the sale of advanced Russian Iskander SS-26 missiles to Syria. According to DEBKAfile, Putin reneged on a deal not to sell the hardware to Syria, a lamentable situation for the Israelis as NATO and the United States “have nothing in their missile arsenal to match its unique attributes,” in other words, Israel is helpless to stop the Iskander if Syria decided to use it. So impressive is the missile “that in 2004, the Americans sought to include it in various treaties signed with Russia for precluding the manufacture and sale of certain weapons. Moscow balked. A Western missile expert says: ‘Even a small quantity of these missiles is capable of radically changing the balance of strength in local conflicts.’ It is a strategic weapon for countries with a small area like Syria.”

Strategic, indeed. Fast-forward to July, 2007, and witness Israel bemoaning the Iskander once again. “Syria sees the next war with Israel as involving missile attacks on civilian infrastructure and front-line guerilla warfare, an anonymous senior official in the Syrian Ministry of Defense told Defense News Weekly, in an interview appearing Monday. Syria prefers to avoid a direct, ‘classic’ confrontation with Israel, he said. Instead, the next war will involve Katyusha rocket and ballistic missiles that will target strategic points in Israel, especially civilian infrastructure,” reports Arutz Sheva. “According to Arab affairs expert Dr. Guy Bechor, the Syrian assessment is a result of the Second Lebanon War. After that war the Syrians understood that they do not need a large ground force to defeat Israel, but rather missiles aimed at dense Israeli population centers. For the past two years the Syrians have been engaged in massive acquisitions from Russia, after an $11 billion debt was partially forgiven by Russia in 2005, and partially covered by Iran…. The London-based daily Al-Sharq al-Awsat recently reported that Syria has deployed Chinese C-802 cruise missiles, which it acquired from Iran. In addition, Russia has expressed its willingness to sell the Syrians its Iskander missile, which has a range of 280 kilometers, more than enough to strike at any destination in Israel. The missile features an optical GPS navigational system that allows operators to guide it to their targets.”

Call it the Hezbollah Strategy. It makes certain sense Syria, with its puny military—when stacked up against Israel, armed to the teeth by the United States—and its out-moded Russian tanks and planes, would eventually adopt Hezbollah’s winning strategy, as there is simply no way it can go up against Israel on the battlefield. Naturally, this new development pokes a big hole in the Likudnik and neocon agenda to take out all of Israel’s enemies in turn. Not even the United States, with its faltering Patriot missiles, can protect Israel against the mighty Iskander, also known as the “Stone.”

Recall, after Israel invaded Lebanon last summer, the neocons demanded Israel attack Syria. “George W. Bush and his neoconservative advisers saw the conflict between Israel and Hezbollah as an opportunity to expand the conflict into Syria and possibly achieve a long-sought ‘regime change’ in Damascus, but Israel’s leadership balked at the scheme, according to Israeli sources,” Robert Parry wrote at the time for Consortium News. “One Israeli source said Bush’s interest in spreading the war to Syria was considered ‘nuts’ by some senior Israeli officials, although Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has generally shared Bush’s hard-line strategy against Islamic militants.”

Nuts, indeed, as Israel was likely not fond of the prospect of Syrian missiles raining down on Tel Aviv, a feat Hezbollah was not able to accomplish with its short-range and highly inaccurate rockets.

“After rebuffing Bush’s suggestion about attacking Syria, the Israeli government settled on a strategy of mounting a major assault in southern Lebanon aimed at rooting out Hezbollah guerrillas who have been firing Katyusha rockets into northern Israel.” As we know, this strategy turned out to be a dismal failure, although Lebanese civilians paid a high price for Hezbollah’s reluctance to surrender.

“According to the neocon strategy, ‘regime change’ in Syria and Iran, in turn, would undermine Hezbollah, the Shiite militia that controls much of southern Lebanon, and would strengthen Israel’s hand in dictating peace terms to the Palestinians,” writes Parry.

Of course, this is nonsense, as the Israelis have no desire to enter into “peace terms” with the Palestinians, dictated or otherwise. Moreover, the neocons are not particularly concerned with undermining Hezbollah per se, as Hezbollah controls, or rather protects, only part of Lebanon. In fact, the neocons, often more Zionist than the fanatical Likudnik Jabotinskyites in Israel, want to sweep the entire board and render all Arab and Muslims nations in the region into politically ineffectual vassal states, unable to contest Israel’s hegemony and helpless to resist Greater Israel, from the Nile to the Euphrates, as Rabbi Fischmann, member of the Jewish Agency for Palestine, declared in his testimony to the U.N. Special Committee of Enquiry in July of 1947.

Now that Syria has declared the Hezbollah Strategy, all of this will be much more difficult for the Likudniks and the neocons. It is, as well, reassuring to note that the promise made to Israeli officials by former U.S. Undersecretary of State John Bolton will be far more difficult to deliver, i.e., Bolton and the neocons had little doubt America would attack Iraq, and that it would be necessary to deal with Syria, Iran and North Korea afterwards, although Iraq was regrettably invaded, occupied, and pitched into massive ruination and incalculable human suffering. Hopefully, Syria and Iran will now be spared a likewise fate.

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