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Old 04-10-2003, 04:35 PM   #1
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Missile Defense Briefing Reports 2002: WMD worldwide

MISSILE DEFENSE BRIEFING REPORT NO. 60


American Foreign Policy Council, Washington, DC

by Ilan Berman

ISRAEL WARNS NATO OF ROGUE THREATS


A high-level Israeli intelligence official has issued a stark warning to NATO leaders about the mounting threat posed by Iran. In a secret speech to high-ranking NATO officials, Ephraim Halevy, head of Israel's MOSSAD foreign intelligence service, cautioned that Tehran is moving ahead with development of a long-range ballistic missile that "could reach Europe and in the future, even North America." The Islamic Republic, according to Halevy, is also hard at work on "weapon-grade nuclear capabilities," a development that should be the "subject of constant attention" on the part of the Alliance.


He also stressed that Iran, which is a party to the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention, is nonetheless constructing a "dual purpose civilian infrastructure which could be converted very speedily into production capabilities of large quantities of VX [nerve agent]."


In his speech, detailed in the June 27th Ha'aretz, Halevy also stressed that Syria and Libya have taken sigificant strides in ballistic missile and WMD development. Damascus, he warned, has acquired and subsequently produced Scud B-, C- and D-class missiles from North Korea, and is developing a sizeable chemical weapons program - one which already includes Sarin gas and could soon include VX as well. As for Libya, Halevy told NATO officials in attendance, including Secretary General Lord George Robertson and Military Committee chair Admiral Guido Venturoni, that Tripoli is "developing long-range missiles with North Korean support" and is "striving to achieve nuclear capability."


PENTAGON PLANS HISTORIC MERGER...


The U.S. Department of Defense has aired plans to create a new organizational unit for U.S. missile defenses and offensive strategic forces. In an official press release on June 26th, the Pentagon revealed that the U.S. Strategic Command, in charge of American missiles and bombers, will be merged with the U.S. Space Command, which oversees warning satellites, in the near future. The adapted command, as yet unnamed, "will be responsible for both early warning of and defense against missile attack as well as long-range conventional attacks," according to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. The move tracks closely with President Bush's recently-revealed plans for preemptive military action against rogue states and terrorist groups seeking weapons of mass destruction.


...AS WHITE HOUSE SCORES CONGRESSIONAL VICTORY


The White House appears to have emerged victorious from its drawn-out and rancorous battle with Congress over missile defense funding, the Washington Post (June 27) reports. On June 26th, the Senate approved amendment legislation making an additional $814 million in defense funds available to the White House for either missile defense or counterterrorism. The legislation, which grants the President discretion to use the money for either NMD development or the war against terrorism, effectively restores funds previously cut by the Senate Armed Services Committee from the Bush administration's fiscal year 2003 NMD budget.


MOSCOW, BEIJING RESUME MISSILE DEFENSE MANUEVERING


In the wake of the Bush administration's abandonment of the ABM Treaty, Russia and China have renewed efforts to thwart at least one aspect of American missile defense plans. At the late June meeting of the United Nations Disarmament Conference in Geneva, Russian envoy Leonid Skotnikov officially proposed a ban on the stationing of weapons in space. In a statement to the Itar-TASS news agency on June 28th, the Russian Foreign Ministry made clear that the move was part of larger strategic coordination taking place between Moscow and Beijing. "When we were drawing up the main elements of a future agreement with China, we were taking into account the serious gaps in current international law relating to activity in space: a lack of a ban on deploying in space weapons other than those of mass destruction," the Foreign Ministry said. If passed, the proposal could thwart American plans for a space-based component to U.S. missile defense.


NEW DELHI MAKES NMD A PRIORITY


Amid an ongoing missile threat from neighboring Pakistan, Indian officials are moving decisively to limit their country's vulnerability to ballistic missile attack. In comments reported by the Press Trust of India (June 29), outgoing Defense Secretary Yogendra Narain outlined his government's plans for a "sharp and visible" acceleration of anti-missile efforts. Preparations appear to already be underway: the June 28th Times of India reports that New Delhi has just acquired Israel's "Green Pine" radar, which serves as an important component of the jointly-developed U.S.-Israeli Arrow Theater Missile Defense system currently being sought by India.

MISSILE DEFENSE BRIEFING REPORT NO. 65

American Foreign Policy Council, Washington, DC


TURKISH MISSILE SHIELD TAKES SHAPE


Amid growing preparations for a campaign against Iraq, the United States has initiated serious missile defense discussions with Turkey. The July 31st issue of Istanbul's Hurriyet newspaper reveals that a 15-member American defense delegation has arrived in Ankara for secret, closed-door consultations about the creation of a joint American-Turkish "Patriot shield." The project is designed to protect Turkey, a key American ally in the fight against Saddam Hussein's Iraq, from possible retaliatory missile strikes by Baghdad. The plan, which classifies Ankara as a "top-level ally," includes the outfitting of industrial zones, urban centers and strategic assets in Turkey with early warning technologies and anti-missile defenses like the U.S.-made Patriot interceptor.


A SHIFTING BALANCE OF POWER IN SOUTH ASIA


Despite official optimism, India's ballistic missile program is facing serious difficulties, writes Pravin Sawhney in the July 30th Pioneer. After a strong initial start in the 1980s, New Delhi's Integrated Guided Missiles Development Program, or IGMDP, is now suffering from several critical shortcomings, the paper reports. Among them is the unwieldiness of the "Prithvi" short-range missile, which still relies on liquid, rather than solid, propellant, and is incapable of penetrating hardened targets because of its low terminal velocity. New Delhi's "Agni" class of advanced rockets, meanwhile, is struggling with deficiencies in command and control, and has not yet been optimally integrated into the country's national security structure.


Pakistan, on the other hand, is well on its way to fielding one of the world 's most advanced ballistic missile systems. The Rawalpalindi Jang (August 1) reports that after months of development by Islamabad's National Engineering and Scientific Commission (NESCOM), the "Shaheen-3" medium-range misilse will soon be tested by the Pakistani armed forces. According to sources cited by the paper, once the 750-kilometer range rocket is operational, it will be capable of defeating prospective Indian missile defenses, such as the Arrow Theater Missile Defense system New Delhi is in the process of acquiring from Israel.


AND OMINOUS ADVANCES IN THE PACIFIC


Officials in Taipei are expressing new worries over China's expanding missile arsenal, CNN.com (July 23) reports. The biannual "2002 National Defense Report," recently released by the Taiwanese government, reports that Beijing's military spending is rising rapidly, and that the PRC's missiles - many of which are deployed in eastern Chinese provinces across from Taiwan - are increasing in number. "By 2005," the white paper warns, "the deployed missiles targeting Taiwan will increase to around 600."


Beijing is also making some significant - and worrying - strides in defense development. The August 4th South China Morning Post reports that the People 's Liberation Army (PLA) is planning to produce and launch two new classes of nuclear submarines, the "Type 094" and the "Type 093," over the next decade. The long-range subs will be equipped with a new ballistic misilse system capable of striking the U.S. from close to the Chinese coast. Currently, the PRC has only one long-range, ballistic missile-equipped nuclear submarine which must travel across the Pacific in order to come within striking distance of the United States.


ATHENS EXPANDS AIR DEFENSES


Greece has conducted the first successful test of its upgraded anti-missile systems, Middle East Newsline (July 29) reports. The test, carried out by the Hellenic Air Force on July 25th, involved the interception of a subsonic drone by an American PAC-2 unit on the Island of Crete. The successful intercept marks the first public demonstration of the air defense upgrades currently being undertaken by the Greek government. Greece, which recently acquired four units of the PAC-3 air defense system from the U.S.-based

Raytheon Corporation, has been leased three units of the PAC-2 until its PAC-3s become operational.


NORTH KOREA TARGETS TOKYO-WASHINGTON COOPERATION


In its annual report to the ASEAN Regional Forum, the North Korean government has blasted the emerging missile defense relationship between Japan and the United States. According to Pyongyang, U.S. efforts to erect a layered international system to protect against ballistic missile attack contributes to the "destruction of the global security structure" and a looming "arms race" in Asia. For its part, Japan's growing militarization, and its cooperation with the U.S., not only violates Tokyo's 'Peace Constitution' but constitutes a serious threat to regional peace, the Korea Times (August 1) reports the brief as saying.

MISSILE DEFENSE BRIEFING REPORT NO. 67

American Foreign Policy Council, Washington, DC

THE POLITICS OF ATTACKING IRAQ


As momentum for a campaign against Iraq builds in Washington, the Bush administration is taking steps to reassure allies in the Middle East. Recently, a delegation of top American defense officials traveled to Ankara to discuss the possibility of a joint "Patriot shield" to protect parts of Turkey from Iraqi missiles. Now, the White House appears to be getting set to bolster Israeli missile defenses. Though not a step formally requested by Jerusalem, the August 15th Ha'aretz reports that the U.S. is planning to provide Israel with units of the American PAC-3 system ahead of any military action against Baghdad. In addition to supplementing Israel's existing defenses, the PAC-3 deployment could also serve a significant political purpose, the paper reports; it would give the Bush administration a greater ability to restrain the Israeli government in the event of missile strikes from Iraq.


COOPERATION ALONG THE "AXIS"


Baghdad, meanwhile, could soon receive military assistance from an unexpected direction. Middle East Newsline (August 19) reports that Iran is examining a request for advanced arms made by its historic rival. The overture, aired recently in Tehran by Iraqi heir-apparent Qusay Hussein, is said to include inquiries about units of Iran's "Shihab-3" medium range missiles. While not expecting Tehran to actively collaborate with Baghdad, Western intelligence sources have dubbed Iran's consideration of the motion to be a "significant" indicator of warming ties between the two nations.


A SAUDI MISSILE THREAT?


A report by Israel's Yediot Ahronot daily has detailed Saudi Arabia's rapidly expanding missile capabilities. The expose, covered on August 12th by the Worldnetdaily website, reveals that Riyadh has acquired 120 long-range CSS-2 missiles from China over the past decade. The nuclear-capable rockets, the majority of which are based at a major missile complex in the southern Saudi oasis of El-Solayil, have a range of 3,500 kilometers and are capable of striking Israel, Turkey and parts of India.


MOSCOW TALKS MISSILES...


Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov has gone public with new revelations about the Kremlin's missile plans. Visiting a division of Russia's Strategic Missile Troops in the Chelyabinsk region recently, Ivanov revealed that Moscow views the country's arsenal of SS-18 "Satan" intercontinental ballistic missiles as the cornerstone of its future nuclear and missile force. The nuclear-capable ICBMs, which can overpower "the most modern anti-missile defense system," will remain in combat service until 2016 as part of Russia's revamped "nuclear missile shield," Interfax (August 16) reports Ivanov as saying. The news constitutes an abandonment of Moscow's commitments to the 1993 START II agreement, under which former Russian President Boris Yeltsin pledged to dismantle Russia's arsenal of SS-18s by 2007.


...EYES KUWAITI MARKETS


The Kremlin is also planning for an expanded - and lucrative - defense relationship with Kuwait, Itar-TASS (August 19) reports. According to defense industry sources cited by the news agency, Russia's state-owned Rosoboroneksport defense conglomerate is planning to earn between $100-200 million on the Kuwaiti arms market over the next several years. Of particular interest to the Kuwaiti military are Russian air and missile defense systems like the "Tor-1," which the Gulf state hopes will correct deficiencies in its short range air defenses.


TOKYO INCHES TOWARD WASHINGTON


Japan is poised to significantly expand its missile defense relationship with the United States, the Jiji Press Ticker Service (August 14) reports. According to defense officials in Tokyo, the Japanese Defense Agency is mulling the possibility of expanding cooperation with the Pentagon from ist current research phase to the active development of ballistic missile defenses. If approved, the decision, which is expected by the end of this year, would pave the way for the deployment of cooperative sea-based missile defenses based on Japan's fleet of Aegis destroyers by the year 2005.


Editor: Ilan Berman
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Old 04-10-2003, 05:06 PM   #2
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My God, this is the effect of attacking Iraq we warned about.
WMD proliferation, as North Korea says disarmament is not an option.

This is an article on one of our finest preparing to govern in Iraq.
Rumsfeld is freakin insane.
The Pentagon's (CIA) Man in Iraq
04/04/2003
Toward the start of the second Persian Gulf War, I found myself in a room with R. James Woolsey, CIA chief during the first two years of the Clinton administration. A television was turned on, and we both watched a news report on the latest development in the North Korea nuclear drama. How much longer, I asked him, could this administration wait before dealing with North Korea and its efforts to develop nuclear-weapons material? A little while, but not too long, he said. Until after the Iraq war? Yes, Woolsey said, we can take care of things then. (That was when the prevailing assumption was the war in Iraq would take about as long as a Donald Rumsfeld press conference.) And, I wondered, is this a challenge that can be taken care of with, say, a well-planned and contained bombing raid, one that strikes the nuclear facilities in question? "Oh, no, " he said. "This is going to be war." War, full-out war, with a nation that might already have a few nuclear weapons and that does have 600,000 North Korean soldiers stationed 25 miles from Seoul, with 37,000 US troops in between? "Yes, war." He didn't flinch, didn't bat an eye.

Woolsey is something of a prophet of war. And the Pentagon wants him to be part of its team running postwar Iraq.

On April 2, Woolsey made headlines by telling students at UCLA that the Iraq war was part of "World War IV." Speaking at a teach-in sponsored by campus Republicans and Americans for Victory Over Terrorism, a pro-war-in-Iraq group founded by William Bennett, Woolsey remarked, "This fourth world war, I think, will last considerably longer than either World Wars I or II did for us. Hopefully not the full four-plus decades of the Cold War." He cited three enemies: the religious leaders of Iran, the "fascists" of Syria and Iraq, and Islamic extremists like Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda. He called for the United States to back democratic movements throughout the Middle East, which "will make a lot of people very nervous," particularly Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and the Saudi Arabia oligarchs. "We want you nervous," he said. "We want you to realize now, for the fourth time in a hundred years, this country and its allies are on the march and that we are on the side of those whom you--the Mubaraks, the Saudi Royal family--most fear: We're on the side of your own people." In other words: crusade, anyone?

Woolsey's comments won him several minutes on the cable news networks. But a quick check of clips showed that he has been saying the same for months, using the exact same words. For instance, last November, during a speech before an audience assembled by conservative provocateur David Horowitz, Woolsey told the crowd "that we are in World War IV" and "I don't believe this terror war is every really going to go away until we change the face of the Middle East." Given his much-promoted diagnosis and prescription--correct or not--the other Woolsey news-of-the-week seemed even more bizarre than it had originally appeared.

A few days before CNN blared, "Ex-CIA director: US faces 'World War IV," The Washington Post reported that the Pentagon, in concocting its postwar plans, had proposed installing Woolsey as head of Iraq's information ministry. The State Department had derived its own list of former ambassadors and experts to oversee Iraqi governmental agencies once the war ends (presumably with a US victory). The Pentagon didn't fancy State's list--too many midlevel types and bureaucrats. It wanted more prominent Americans in charge and its own guys. The Pentagon nominated Woolsey for the information slot. The White House sensibly said, no way.

Woolsey's bring-it-on desire to confront much of the Arab world aside, whoever in the Pentagon suggested tapping any former CIA head to run any part of a post-Hussein government should be shit-canned. How might this look to Iraqis and the Arab public? Were the Pentagon schemers unaware of the reputation the CIA has in the Arab world and throughout most of the globe? The folks next door in Iran probably still remember well how the CIA supported the brutal secret police of the Shah they booted. And how many Iraqis (and other Arabs) would not believe that Woolsey's appointment was not part of some conspiracy? Moreover, how much credibility would a CIA vet--who headed an agency that occasionally produces covert propaganda--bring to this sensitive position that demands the trust of the public? Answer: none. And placing Americans at the helm of individual ministries might in and of itself stir objections within Iraq and among allies. As Adnan Pachachi, who was foreign minister in the government deposed by Saddam Hussein, told the Financial Times, "It makes no sense for the US to involve itself in the details," "It's not what the Iraqis want and what the international community wants. It's not even what the US's allies want."

That Pentagon officials would even consider placing a CIA man in charge of the Ministry of Truth is evidence their judgment is severely impaired. This was not merely a wacky idea that got floated by some outsider; this was a serious Pentagon proposal that required White House intervention to kill it. A safe bet would be that Defense Secretary Rumsfeld and Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz vetted the list that included Woolsey. According to the New York Times, Wolfowitz is controlling the selection process, handpicking his proteges and former officials for the various ministries and earning the sobriquet "Wolfowitz of Arabia." ( The New York Times also noted that "Wolfie's people" are "thought to be particularly fervent about trying to remake Iraq as a beacon of democracy and a country with a tilt toward Israel." The latter mission is a surefire way to win over the Iraqi public and convince Arabs that the United States is in Iraq only to "liberate" its people, not to advance its own strategic interests.) Retired General Jay Garner, the Pentagon-named civilian viceroy who will oversee the de facto cabinet ministries while reporting to General Tommy Franks, must have glanced at the list as well.

What were they thinking? Can these guys be trusted to run postwar Iraq? The problems with Woolsey include not just his CIA past and his present-day advocacy of an all-out showdown in the Middle East. He is also a well-known champion of the Iraqi National Congress, an exile group run by Ahmed Chalabi, an Iraqi businessman who has been out of the country since 1956 and who was convicted in 1992 of defrauding his own Jordanian bank. (Chalabi claims he was set up.) And Woolsey's law firm, Shea & Gardner, is a registered agent for the INC, though Woolsey says he does not participate in his firm's work on behalf of the group. The INC, a Pentagon favorite, has not been a model of democracy and transparency, angering other exiles in the past for not revealing what it did with the financial assistance it received from the US government. And the State Department and the CIA have not been fans of the INC and Chalabi. Whatever Chalabi's and the INC's flaws, it was misguided (read: dumb) for the Pentagon to ask an American firmly identified with what will be just one faction vying for power in postwar Iraq to run, in essence, the Iraqi media.

Still, Woolsey may end up with a role in the occupation government. The White House vetoed embedding him at the top of the information ministry, but news reports say the Pentagon might assign him another senior position. And what's next? Ken Lay to head up the new Iraqi energy ministry? Trent Lott, the cultural ministry? Richard Perle, the new Iraqi ambassador to the United Nations?

A postwar job for Woolsey the Would-be Conqueror would be unnecessarily provocative. During the occupation, the United States should conduct itself with humility and sensitivity (especially since it seems, once again, to be shoving the United Nations aside). These are not qualities for which the Pentagon is renowned. To many within Iraq and elsewhere, the message conveyed by any Woolsey appointment will be, Washington has sent the CIA to take over Iraq. So why do it? Does Woolsey alone possess the needed skill set? (Which American will be in charge of the new Iraqi intelligence agency?) But credit the Pentagon with loyalty, for it appears to be sticking with one of the most prominent cheerleaders for war in Iraq (and perhaps beyond) and standing by a grand tradition of war. To the victor go the spoils. In this case, no matter how ridiculous or counterproductive that may be.
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Old 04-10-2003, 05:37 PM   #3
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Interesting article, Scarletwine. Thank you for posting it
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Old 04-10-2003, 06:10 PM   #4
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Your welcome. This war is really only the beginning of the dreams of the WEI, Defense contractors, and the Military war machine.

After Iraq: Perpetual War and a Nuclear World

By Ian Williams, AlterNet
April 9, 2003

John Bolton is at it again. Just in case the Arabs were worried that the attack on Iraq is just the beginning of an American crusade, the Assistant Secretary of State for Disarmament Affairs rushed to confirm their worst fears.

Speaking on the U.S.-financed Arabic station Radio Sawa, Bolton declared: "We are hoping that the elimination of the dictatorial regime of Saddam Hussein and the elimination of all of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction would be important lessons to other countries in the region, particularly Syria, Libya, and Iran, that the cost of their pursuit of weapons of mass destruction is potentially quite high." The statement is especially significant, coming as it does from the man who went to Israel two months ago to promise Ariel Sharon that "it will be necessary to deal with threats from Syria, Iran and North Korea afterwards."

Of the list of likely villains, Syria Israel's neighbor is shaping up to be the strongest candidate for the next war of "liberation." The administration is already preparing the reasons why Syria should be the next in line for arming Saddam, hosting his hidden weapons, and supporting terrorism.

The early indications of Washington's intentions were contained in Rumsfeld's heavy-handed statements threatening to crack down on Syrian exports of weapons to Iraq. More importantly, the search for banned weapons in Iraq has not gone to plan the Iraqis did not oblige Washington by using any, and the best candidates for "disarmament" so far have been a couple of drums of pesticide. Just in case the much-desired WMD don't turn up soon, Israeli intelligence honcho Gen. Yossi Kupperwasser has already told a Knesset committee that "it is possible Iraq transferred missiles and weapons of mass destruction into Syria." While Gen. Richard Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, says that there is no evidence to substantiate that claim, that assessment is doubtless subject to change if the White House so decides.

The U.S. has also complained about Syrian, and indeed Iranian, sponsorship of "terrorist" organizations like Hizbollah. Although no one except Israel and Washington define Hizbollah as terrorists, the administration's liberal use of the adjective, "terrorist," is geared toward a domestic audience - a strategy that worked very well in the case of Iraq. And the Bush administration would have little difficulty in proving that the Syrian Ba'athists are every bit as vicious and undemocratic as their Iraqi comrades. Following a relatively casualty-free war for the US in Iraq, there would be no difficulty in getting popular support for an attack on Syria.

The next few weeks will see a real test of just how strong the extremists are in Washington, and if Damascus is foolhardy enough to add to its jeopardy by hosting Saddam Hussein. There is, of course, no legal justification for such an attack, but having just flouted international law and the U.N. Security Council to go after Iraq, it is difficult to see any concern for world opinion holding the administration back. Besides, the prospect of actual resistance from other countries is minimal. At one time, war on Syria would have risked World War III, but not any more. While Putin may bluster, he is not going to stick his nuclear neck out for a former client-state.

The implications are worrying and not just for Syria or the other "axis of evil" countries. The more important concern is the effects on the global rules of engagement of this aggressive whack-em U.S. policy in a post-Cold War era. No conventional force can stand up against the world's lone superpower. The great levelers of the yawning technological divide between the U.S. and the rest of the world are terrorism which is impervious to the huge boosts in Pentagon spending on hi-tech killing machines and weapons of mass destruction, particularly nuclear missiles. It does not take a "rogue" state to draw the necessary conclusions from the very different U.S. policies toward North Korea and Iraq. The lesson is to follow in the nuclear footsteps of India and Pakistan that is the option that offers protection from the extremist hawks in the White House. Even the saintly South Africans may soon be dusting off their nuclear plans.

So while many Iraqis rejoice at the overthrow of their tyrant, the war fought ostensibly to disarm Saddam will almost certainly lead to massive nuclear proliferation. A world armed to the teeth may well be the true and lasting price we all pay for the war on Iraq.
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Old 04-10-2003, 06:45 PM   #5
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March 31 2003, 9:08 PM

In an address yesterday to a powerful pro-Israel lobby group, Powell said Syria must choose between cooperation and supporting "terrorist groups" and Saddam's regime.

"Either way Syria bears the responsibility for its choices and for the consequences," he said.

US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld warned Syria last week about what he said was the delivery of military supplies to the Iraqi army battling US troops.

Rumsfeld, who also hit out at Iran, told a news briefing on Friday: "We have information of shipments of military supplies crossing the border from Syria into Iraq."

The deliveries, which he said included night vision goggles, "pose a direct threat to the lives of coalition forces."

"We consider such trafficking as hostile acts and will hold the Syrian government accountable for such shipments," he said.

Relations were already fraught since March 12, when Powell accused Syria of developing weapons of mass destruction and called its military presence in Lebanon an "occupation."

Although Syria is not included in US President George W Bush's "axis of evil", which groups Iran, Iraq and North Korea, it is still on the State Department's list of countries supporting terrorism and fears that it may be next on the list after Iraq.
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Old 04-10-2003, 06:49 PM   #6
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Israeli sources say war imminent; Iran and Syria next


Adam McConnel
1:06pm Fri Feb 14th, 2003

ISTANBUL - Sources in the Israeli defense establishment expect a Bush administration assault on Iraq within weeks, if not days.

Israeli Chief of Staff Moshe Yaalon, quoted by local media, says that the war would begin "before the end of February."

Yaalon also states that an attack on Iraq would spark a geopolitical "earthquake" in the region, following which the US would target Iran and Syria.

Yaalon's comments somewhat echoed statements made several days earlier by a Pakistani opposition leader. Qazi Hussain Ahmed, an official of the Islamic political coalition Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal, claimed that the US would target Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Pakistan after Iraq.

Prof Edward Ghareeb, a US university professor and lecturer at the Washington-based International Peace Centre, believes that Iran, Syria, and Saudi Arabia are all eventual targets of the Bush Administration.

LONDON, April 4 (Xinhuanet) -- British Prime Minister Tony Blair said on Friday that the United States had absolutely no plans to attack Syria or Iran, two neighboring countries of Iraq.


----------

http://atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/ED11Ak02.html

Syria puts its foot down
By George Baghdadi

DAMASCUS - Syria, a staunch opponent of the United States-led war on Iraq, has said that it would consider any post-war administration run by the United States military in Baghdad as an "occupation government".

US Secretary of State Colin Powell had stated earlier that Washington was sending a team this week to Iraq to begin laying the groundwork for an interim authority. President George W Bush described it as a "transition quasi-government ... until the conditions are right for the people to elect their own leadership". He said the United Nations would have a "vital role" in setting up the interim authority.

Syria, the only Arab nation on the UN Security Council, backed Resolution 1441 calling on Iraq to account for and destroy its weapons of mass destruction. But it has nonetheless warned that imposing a US military regime on Iraq would have dangerous repercussions in the region.

"There is a difference between a transitional government and a military government. If it is going to be a military one, then it will be an occupation government. There are international laws that call for recognizing the government that the people choose," Buthaina Shaaban, head of the press department at the Syrian Foreign Ministry, told Inter Press Service.

Perhaps nowhere do the questions about what comes next after Iraq generate a sharper sense of dread than in neighboring Syria, controlled since 1963 by a rival branch of the same Ba'ath Party that has been at the helm of affairs on Iraq under Saddam Hussein.

Syrian President Bashar Assad told the Lebanese newspaper al-Safir on Thursday that the US-British military offensive in Iraq is "clear occupation and a flagrant aggression against a United Nations member state".

Mufti Sheikh Ahmad Kaftaro, Syria's top Muslim religious leader, called last month for suicide bombings against US and British invaders in Iraq. A suicide attack on US marines on Saturday following his statement looks set to further strain relations between Syria and the US.

In the aftermath of the timid rapprochement that followed the 1991 Gulf War, relations between Syria and the US have reached a low ebb. Syrian officials dismiss the notion of any possible effect of war or any unease that their country might fall into US sights next.

Much ink, though, has been spilled on the warnings issued last month by US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, in which he deemed Syria's alleged dispatch of military material to Iraq a "hostile act". US Secretary of State Colin Powell followed up warning that Syria "can continue direct support for terrorist groups and the dying regime of Saddam Hussein, or it can embark on a different and more hopeful course".

The remarks were couched in some of the strongest language used in years against Syria, a country on the US State Department's list of states that allegedly sponsor terrorism by hosting radical Palestinian groups and supporting Lebanese Hezbollah. Commentators generally believe those threats indicate that the US may target Syria once it is done with Iraq - a view not necessarily shared by all.

Some suggest that Syria can be a partner in the war against terrorism if it is given encouragement rather than being threatened. Richard Murphy, US Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs from 1983 to 1989, said he did not believe armed conflict with Syria was on the immediate horizon.

British Prime Minister Tony Blair on Monday gave assurances to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad that Damascus was not a target. "Blair explained that Britain disagrees completely with those who promote the targeting of Syria," an official source quoted Blair as telling Assad in a telephone conversation.

Many believe the "Syria-next" scenario to be improbable. For one thing, the Bush administration knows that an assault on Syria would merely polarize the Middle East further. And, perhaps more significantly, even Washington hardliners don't really believe a war is needed to change Syrian behavior.
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Old 04-10-2003, 06:58 PM   #7
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That's what Blair thinks.
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Old 04-10-2003, 07:25 PM   #8
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Anyway, if it comes to any action, with Syria those traitor journalists will know better when to peep up and when to keep their mouth shut.
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Old 04-10-2003, 07:30 PM   #9
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Old 04-12-2003, 10:37 AM   #10
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Location: the Netherlands
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Well, with all those patriot missels here, this makes sense,....

Us arms trader to run Iraq.
http://www.observer.co.uk/business/s...925309,00.html
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