Tag Archive: Hezbollah


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Published on Jan 7, 2014

http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2014/01/…

Hezbollah says undeterred by threats, keep supporting Assad

Mon Jan 6, 2014

Lebanon’s resistance movement Hezbollah pledges not to end its support for the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

In a statement on Sunday, Hezbollah said threats and terrorist attacks will not deter the movement following a recent bombing claimed by an al-Qaeda-affiliated group in Beirut.

The comments were made after the al-Qaeda-linked Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) on Saturday claimed responsibility for a car bomb attack in Beirut’s southern suburbs which killed two people.

On Saturday, the ISIL said in a statement posted online that it had penetrated the “security system” of the resistance movement to “crush its stronghold.”

The statement added that the attack was “the first installment of a heavy account” that awaits Hezbollah due to the group’s support for the Syrian government.

Hezbollah Secretary-General Seyyed Hassan Nasrallah has on several occasions reiterated the Lebanese resistance movement’s decision to fight foreign-backed and Takfiri militants in Syria to defend the Syrian people.

Syria has been gripped by deadly crisis since March 2011. According to reports, the Western powers and their regional allies — especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey — are supporting the militants operating inside Syria.

According to the United Nations, more than 100,000 people have been killed and a total of 7.8 million of others displaced due to the violence.

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© AFP

More than 100,000 people have been killed in the ongoing Syrian conflict according to figures released Wednesday by UK-based watchdog The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. The unrest began in March 2011.

By FRANCE 24 (video)
News Wires (text)

More than 100,000 people have been killed in Syria since the beginning of the country’s uprising in March 2011, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights watchdog said in a new toll on Wednesday.

The Observatory said the toll now stands at 100,191 people, with at least 36,661 civilians killed, including more than 3,000 women and more than 5,000 children under the age of 16.

The group, which relies on a network of activists, doctors and lawyers on the ground throughout Syria, said 18,072 rebel fighters had been killed.

On the regime side, the group reported the deaths of at least 25,407 army soldiers, 17,311 pro-regime militia and 169 members of the Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah, which has dispatched fighters to battle alongside the Syrian army.

 

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Syria Blames Saudi Arabia for Conflict

The civil war in Syria has now killed more than 100,000 people, a grim new estimate Wednesday that comes at a time when the conflict is spreading beyond its borders and hopes are fading for a settlement to end the bloodshed.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which has been tracking the death toll through a network of activists in the country, said most of the 100,191 killed in the last 27 months were combatants.

The regime losses were estimated at nearly 43,000, including pro-government militias and 169 fighters from the Lebanese Shiite Hezbollah group — a recent entrant in the conflict.

The Observatory said 36,661 of the dead are civilians. Recorded deaths among the rebels fighting to topple President Bashar Assad reached more than 18,000, including 2,518 foreign fighters.

Observatory director Rami Abdul-Rahman said he suspected that the toll actually was higher, since neither side has been totally forthcoming about its losses.

The United Nations recently estimated that 93,000 people were killed between March 2011, when the crisis started, and the end of April 2013, concurring with Abdul-Rahman that the actual toll is likely much higher.

The Syrian government has not given a death toll. State media published the names of the government’s dead in the first months of the crisis, but then stopped publishing its losses after the opposition became an armed insurgency.

Mideast Syria.JPEG

Abdul-Rahman said that the group’s tally of military deaths is based on information from medical sources, records obtained by the group from state agencies and activists’ own count of funerals in government-held areas of the country. Other sources are the activist videos showing soldiers who were killed in rebel areas and later identified.

The new estimate comes at a time when hopes for peace talks are fading. The U.N.’s special envoy to Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi, said Tuesday an international conference proposed by Russia and the U.S. will not take place until later in the summer, partly because of opposition disarray.

 

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Epoch Times

Hezbollah Vows to Keep Fighting in Syria

 

 

 

 

 

BEIRUT—The leader of Lebanon’s Hezbollah group vowed Friday to keep fighting in Syria “wherever needed” and said his Shiite Muslim group has made a “calculated” decision to defend the Syrian regime no matter what the consequences.

 

The comments by Sheik Hassan Nasrallah in a speech to supporters in southern Beirut signaled for the first time the Iranian-backed group will stay involved in the civil war raging next door after helping President Bashar Assad’s army recapture a key town in Syria’s central Homs province from rebels.

 

President Barack Obama has authorized lethal aid to Syrian rebels after the U.S. announced it had conclusive evidence that the Syrian regime used chemical weapons. U.S. officials are still grappling with what type and how much weaponry to send, but the announcement buoyed opposition forces, which have found themselves heavily outgunned and outmanned by the Hezbollah-backed regime.

 

The Syrian government on Friday dismissed U.S. charges that it used chemical weapons as “full of lies,” accusing Obama of resorting to fabrications to justify his decision to arm Syrian rebels.

 

U.S. officials said the administration could provide the rebel fighters with a range of weapons, including small arms, ammunition, assault rifles and a variety of anti-tank weaponry such as shoulder-fired rocket-propelled grenades and other missiles. The officials insisted on anonymity in order to discuss internal administration discussions with reporters.

 

Hezbollah has come under harsh criticism at home and abroad for sending its gunmen to Qusair, and Nasrallah’s gamble in Syria primarily stems from his group’s vested interest in the Assad regime’s survival. The Syrian government has been one of Hezbollah’s strongest backers for decades and the militant group fears that if the regime falls it will be replaced by a U.S.-backed government that will be hostile to Hezbollah.

 

Nasrallah said verbal and other attacks against his militant group “only serve to increase our determination.”

 

“We will be where we should be, we will continue to bear the responsibility we took upon ourselves,” Nasrallah said. “There is no need to elaborate… we leave the details to the requirements of the battlefield.”

 

Assad’s forces, aided by fighters from Lebanon’s militant group Hezbollah, captured Qusair on June 5, dealing a heavy blow to rebels who had been entrenched in the strategic town for over a year.

 

Since then, the regime has shifted its attention to recapture other areas in the central Homs province and Aleppo to the north.

 

A visibly angry Nasrallah did not say outright whether his fighters would go as far as fighting in Aleppo, but his words strongly suggested the group was prepared to fight till the end.

 

“After Qusair for us will be the same as before Qusair,” he said. “The project has not changed and our convictions have not changed.”

 

Nasrallah reiterated that the fight in Syria was one against the “American, Israeli and Takfiri project” that was meant to destroy Syria, which along with Iran has been the group’s main backer. Takfiri Islamists refers to an ideology that urges Sunni Muslims to kill anyone they consider an infidel.

 

Much of the group’s arsenal, including tens of thousands of rockets, is believed to have come from Iran via Syria or from Syria itself.

 

In addition to the increased military aid, the U.S. also announced Thursday it had conclusive evidence that Assad’s regime has used chemical weapons, including the nerve agent sarin, on a small scale against opposition forces. The White House said multiple chemical attacks last year killed up to 150 people.

 

Obama has said the use of chemical weapons cross a “red line,” triggering greater U.S involvement in the crisis.

 

“The White House has issued a statement full of lies about the use of chemical weapons in Syria, based on fabricated information,” a statement issued Friday by the Syrian Foreign Ministry said. “The United States is using cheap tactics to justify President Barack Obama’s decision to arm the Syrian opposition,” it said.

 

 

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RussiaToday RussiaToday

Published on May 5, 2013

Syria says Israel has effectively declared war, after its planes bombed targets in Damascus, the second airstrikes in as many days. Syria’s state media says Israeli rockets targeted a military research centre on the outskirts of the capital. Video footage and eye witness accounts suggest the attacks hit weapons dumps, triggering large explosions.

Syria says a number of people were killed and wounded amid widespread destruction. The Arab League has condemned the strikes and demanded the UN Security Council act to stop any more. The League say there has been a “dangerous violation of an Arab state’s sovereignty”. Article 2 of the United Nations Charter bans the use of force against the territorial integrity of any state. RT’s Gayane Chichakyan in Washington and Polly Boiko in London told RT more about the reaction coming from the UK and the US.

RT LIVE http://rt.com/on-air

 

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Israeli Raids in Syria Highlight Arab Conundrum

 

 

 

 

 

Five weeks ago, the head of the Arab League capped a summit in Qatar with an impassioned appeal to strengthen the rebel fighters trying to bring down Syrian President Bashar Assad. On Sunday, he denounced Israeli’s airstrike into Assad’s territory as a dangerous threat to regional stability.

 

The contrast reflects a fundamental conundrum for Arab leaders.

 

Nearly all Arab states have sided with the rebel forces seeking to topple Assad and inflict a blow to his main ally, Iran. And Sunday’s attack by Israeli warplanes in Syria — the second in three days — was the type of punishing response many Arab leaders have urged from the West against Assad after more than two years of civil war.

 

The fact the fighter jets came from Israel, however, exposes the complications and regional crosscurrents that make Syria the Arab Spring’s most intricate puzzle.

 

While Israel and much of the Arab world share suspicions about Iran, including worries over its nuclear ambitions and expanding military, the perception that they are allied against Assad — even indirectly — is strongly knocked down by many Arab leaders.

 

The airstrikes also highlight one of the critical side issues of the Syrian conflict: the Iranian-backed Shiite militant group Hezbollah in Lebanon.

 

Mideast Syria Israel.JPEG

 

The Israeli warplanes apparently targeted a shipment of highly accurate, Iranian-made Fateh-110 guided missiles believed to be bound for Hezbollah.

 

Toppling Assad would cut the arms pipeline that runs from Shiite giant Iran to Hezbollah. But Hezbollah remains deeply popular on the Arab street for its battles with Israel, including a war in 2006 in which Hezbollah fired thousands of rockets into Israel.

 

No Arab leader wants to be perceived as giving a green light for Israeli attacks.

 

Arab League chief Nabil Elaraby warned of serious repercussions from the Israeli attacks and called on the U.N. Security Council to “immediately move to stop the Israeli aggressions on Syria.”

 

Elaraby described the Israeli airstrikes as a “grave violation of the sovereignty of an Arab state that will further complicate the issue in Syria and expose the region’s security and stability to the most serious threats and consequences.”

 

Read Full Article Here

 

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Arab ministers condemn Israeli “crimes of war”

 

A general view of the opening session of the foreign ministers meeting at the Arab League headquarters in Cairo March 5, 2008 REUTERS-Amr Dalsh
Saudi Arabia's Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal (R) laughs with Arab League Secretary General Amr Mussa (L) before the opening session of the foreign ministers meeting at the Arab League headquarters in Cairo March 5, 2008. REUTERS-Amr Dalsh
Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Abul Gheit (L) speaks with his Libyan counterpart Abdel Rahman Shalgham before the opening session of the foreign ministers meeting at the Arab League headquarters in Cairo March 5, 2008. REUTERS-Amr Dalsh

By Aziz El-Kaissouni

CAIRO | Wed Mar 5, 2008 3:43pm GMT

(Reuters) – The Arab League condemned Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip as “crimes against humanity” on Wednesday.

Arab foreign ministers said they “strongly condemn the barbaric crimes that the Israeli occupation forces committed in Gaza and the rest of the occupied Palestinian territories”.

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Meeting to prepare for an Arab summit in Syria this month that is expected to focus on Gaza and Lebanon, the ministers said in a statement they were “recording these Israeli crimes as crimes of war and crimes against humanity”.

Israel ended a five-day Gaza military offensive on Monday in which more than 120 Palestinians and two Israeli soldiers were killed. It has threatened to send troops back to the Hamas-run coastal territory if cross-border rocket attacks continue.

Arab League Secretary-General Amr Moussa said: “The criminal aggression against Gaza shows that Israeli policy against the Palestinian people is based on genocide and ethnic cleansing.”

U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said on Wednesday that Israel and the Palestinians had agreed to resume peace talks, but did not specify a date.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, who froze negotiations on Sunday in protest at the Gaza attacks, said talks could not get underway until Israel reached a ceasefire with Gaza militants behind the rocket attacks.

In Cairo, the Arab ministers called on Palestinians to end internal divisions. Islamist Hamas seized control of the Gaza Strip from Abbas’s Fatah faction in June.

 

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Iran ready to train Syrian army: Iran cmdr.

Commander of the Iranian Army’s Ground Forces Brigadier General Ahmad-Reza Pourdastan speaks to reporters on May 5, 2013.

Commander of the Iranian Army’s Ground Forces Brigadier General Ahmad-Reza Pourdastan speaks to reporters on May 5, 2013.
Sun May 5, 2013 2:13PM
Commander of the Iranian Army’s Ground Forces Brigadier General Ahmad-Reza Pourdastan says Iran is ready to train the Syrian army should Damascus require assistance.

Speaking to reporters on Sunday, Pourdastan added that the Syrian army has gained experience during years of conflict with the occupying regime of Israel, and has the ability to defend itself with no need for foreign assistance.

“As a Muslim and friendly country, we stand by Syria and if there is need for training, we will provide them with necessary training,” the senior Iranian commander asserted.

He, however, emphasized that Iran would not have “active involvement in their operations.”

Pourdastan’s remarks came as the Syrian state television reported on Sunday that Israel has carried out an airstrike against the Jamraya Research Center, located northwest of the capital, Damascus. The center had been targeted by another Israeli airstrike back in January.

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‘Israel’s aggression opens door to all possibilities’ – Syrian Information Minister

Published time: May 05, 2013 13:59
Edited time: May 05, 2013 18:04

Syria’s information minister says that those who infringe on Syria’s sovereignty must “study their choices carefully.” He said that Israel has “proved its link to terrorist groups.” Israel has reportedly launched two airstrikes against Syria in two days.

Omran al-Zoabi added that it is Damascus’ duty to “protect the state from any domestic or foreign attack through all available means.

The minister’s comments came after an emergency cabinet meeting organized to respond to what a Western source called a new strike on Iranian missiles bound for Lebanon’s Hezbollah, Reuters reported.

The Arab League has condemned the alleged strike on Syria and urged the UN Security Council (UNSC) to “act immediately to end Israeli attacks on Syria,” calling the alleged strikes a “dangerous violation of an Arab state’s sovereignty.”

This follows reports of condemnation from Egyptian, Lebanese and Iranian leaders.

Syria’s Foreign Ministry sent a letter to the UN and the UN Security Council protesting “Israeli aggression” that killed and wounded several people and “caused widespread destruction.” It also said the attacks aimed “to give direct military support to terrorist groups” fighting the government. It called the strikes a “flagrant violation of international law” that have made the Middle East “more dangerous.”

Still from YouTube video/momo1984momo1

Still from YouTube video/momo1984momo1

Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad said the attack proved that there is an alliance between Israel and Islamists trying to topple the Syrian government. In an interview with CNN he said the airstrikes are a “declaration of war” by Israel and that Syria would retaliate in its own time and way.

Egypt has also condemned the attack, saying it complicated a crisis that Cairo was trying to help resolve. The Egyptian government said in a statement that the strike was a violation of international law and a threat to the regional security.

The Obama administration is fully supportive of Israeli airstrikes on Syria, US officials and diplomatic sources told NBC News.

 

Read Full Article Here

 

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Iran calls for stand against Israel after Syria attack

DUBAI | Sun May 5, 2013 9:33am EDT

(Reuters) – Iran called on the region to unite against Israel after a reported attack on Syria and said it was ready to train the Damascus government’s army.

Israel carried out its second air strike in days on Syria early on Sunday, targeting Iranian-supplied missiles headed for Lebanon’s Hezbollah, a Western intelligence source said.

Tehran on Sunday denied the attack was aimed at “its missiles destined for Hezbollah resistance fighters in Lebanon,” according to the Islamic state’s English-language Press TV.

Iran has supported its ally Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in his efforts to suppress a rebellion that has raged for more than two years and which Tehran and Damascus say is being waged by Western-backed “terrorists”.

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast urged countries in the region to stand against the “assault”, the Fars news agency reported on Sunday.

 

Read Full Article Here

 

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US prodding Israel to attack Syria: Analyst

US President Barack Obama (R) shakes hands with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a meeting at the White House in Washington, DC, March 5, 2012.

US President Barack Obama (R) shakes hands with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a meeting at the White House in Washington, DC, March 5, 2012.
Thu Jul 26, 2012 1:15PM GMT
 

An Israeli attack on Syria will be definitely a geopolitical blunder not because such a strike will be regionally viral but because it will, to the disappointment of the Zionists, gain sympathy for Syria and condemnation for Israel.”

Dr. Ismail Salami, political analyst

A political analyst says Washington is currently too bedeviled to directly engage in a military confrontation in Syria, so it has undertaken to goad “other sinister forces” such as Israel into attacking the Arab country.

“Although Washington seems to have decided to monitor from afar the developments in Syria without any military intervention by avoiding a Libya-style scenario, they are resorting by any means to expedite the collapse of [the Syrian President Bashar] Assad regime,” Dr. Ismail Salami wrote in an article on Press TV website.

The Iranian author said Washington, which has long “run out of novel ideas and well-wrought out plans” to further its objectives in the Middle East, has now clung to the “farcically banal excuse” of the Syrian regime’s alleged stockpile of chemical weapons.

“This has furnished the Pentagon officials with ample reasons to avail themselves of the generous contributions the Zionist regime can dole out to this end.”

White House spokesman Tommy Vietor and several Western media outlets have recently claimed that Damascus possesses and intends to use chemical weapons against its own people.

On July 18, the New York Times reported that US officials have recently been in talks with Israelis ”about whether Israel might move to destroy Syrian weapons facilities”.

Syria, however, has dismissed allegations that it intends to use chemical weapons to end months of unrest, stressing that it will never use weapons of mass destruction against its own people.

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‘Israel used depleted uranium shells in air strike’ – Syrian source

Published time: May 05, 2013 19:08

RT

Video still of Hezbollah TV's footage claiming to show the aftermath of an alleged Israeli airstrike on a military facility near Damascus, on May 5 2013

Video still of Hezbollah TV’s footage claiming to show the aftermath of an alleged Israeli airstrike on a military facility near Damascus, on May 5 2013

Israel used “a new type of weapon”, a senior official at the Syrian military facility that came under attack from the Israeli Air Force told RT.

“When the explosion happened it felt like an earthquake,” said the source, who was present near the attack site on the outskirts of Damascus on Sunday morning.

“Then a giant golden mushroom of fire appeared. This tells us that Israel used depleted uranium shells.”

Depleted uranium is a by-product of the uranium enrichment process that creates nuclear weapons, and was first used by the US in the Gulf conflict of 1991. Unlike the radioactive materials used in nuclear weapons, depleted uranium is not valued for its explosiveness, but for its toughness – it is 2.5 times as dense as steel – which allows it to penetrate heavy protection.

Countries using depleted uranium weapons insist that the material is toxic, but not dangerously radioactive, as long as it remains outside the body.

Read Full Article Here

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‘Toxic chemicals in US drone strikes’

Fri Jun 10, 2011 1:3AM
Press TV
Watch Video Here
Pakistani physicians and experts say the US uses chemical munitions in its non-UN-sanctioned drone strikes on Pakistan’s tribal regions bordering Afghanistan.

Experts revealed that those Pakistani civilians who have come under the unauthorized drone airstrike in Pakistan’s troubled northwest have been afflicted with complicated skin, eye and respiratory diseases due to the deadly chemical materials used in the missiles, the Press TV correspondent in Peshawar reported on Thursday.

According to journalists and experts from Waziristan that is a mountainous region of northwest Pakistan which has often been the focal point of US drone attacks, they have received numerous reports from several people and local doctors pointing at the hazardous effects of the ongoing drone attacks on the entire population.

“Since these drone strikes have been carried out, we have witnessed several peculiar disease cases, and our press club have been frequently visited by those complainants, who have developed skin and bronchial diseases in the aftermath of drone airstrikes. I’d like to add further that the agriculture and the livestock are also showing pitiable condition,” journalist Safdar Dawar told Press TV.

An expert from Waziristan says his daughter died of blood cancer soon after she had developed a skin disease, which was no more than the toxic effect of chemical substances used in the non-UN-sanctioned drone strikes.

“I myself lost my daughter, who was just 28 months old, she developed a skin disease and later on she was diagnosed, within a month, with blood cancer. At that time people were talking about the chemical bombings being carried out. The same is the case now that wherever the drone attacks are carried out, people in that area are complaining about skin diseases, lung infections, throat infections and various kinds of other diseases,” Pakistani political expert Safiullah Gul said.

The report strikes at the heart of growing tension between the United States and Pakistan over the US aerial attacks on Pakistani soil.

Washington claims the airstrikes target militants. However, the attacks have killed hundreds of civilians in Pakistan since 2008, local reports say.

HA/AGB/MGH

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VICE on HBO: Congressman Jim McDermott Interview (Episode 3 – Toxic Iraq)

vice vice

Published on Apr 18, 2013

On the next episode of VICE, premiering on HBO this Friday, April 19th at 11 PM, we interview Congressman Jim McDermott of the Seventh District of Washington State. Congressman McDermott has been one of the only experts and advocates in the US government on the issue of depleted uranium in Iraq. We sit down with him to get a firsthand account of the military’s history of using depleted uranium munitions, the legacy it has left behind in Iraq, and why the US government refuses to do anything about it.

#VICEonHBO

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Toxic Fallout in Fallujah

Since the assaults on Fallujah in 2004, the city has seen an astronomical rise in birth defects and abnormalities, including some too new to even have a proper medical name. VICE went back to Iraq to investigate.

  • IRAQ WAR: Birth Defects And Cancer
  • PLAGUE: Birth Defects Plague Iraq
  • PROJECT: Justice For Fallujah Project
    We are a group of veterans, students, and working people dedicated to raising awareness about the suffering of the people of Fallujah, promoting solidarity with the victims of U.S. war crimes, and ultimately ending all U.S. wars and occupations.

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Justice for Fallujah Fundraiser: Noam Chomsky (1/3)

Chomskyan

Uploaded on Oct 6, 2010

The Justice For Fallujah Project Fundraiser, 9/16/2010
Paulist Center, Boston, MA
http://www.thefallujahproject.org

Recorded and edited by
Charngchi Way
Additional audio by
Jason Pramas

 

 

The  entire list  of  videos  from  Justice  for Fallujah  can  be found here

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Published time: April 22, 2013 16:01
Edited time: April 22, 2013 21:03

 

RT

AFP Photo / Jonathan Nackstrand

AFP Photo / Jonathan Nackstrand

A Jordanian military official has refuted the reports that Jordan has opened two air corridors for Israeli drones to monitor the Syrian conflict. The official told RT Arabic that an earlier report by Le Figaro was “inaccurate and groundless.”

Citing a Western military source, the French daily said the decision to open Jordanian airspace to the Israelis had been reached in March following a visit by President Barack Obama to the country.

“The Syrians have Russian air defense assets, but Israeli aircraft are difficult to detect and therefore virtually immune to anti-aircraft measures,”
said the unnamed source to Le Figaro. The military craft will fly at night to minimize the risk of detection and are capable of striking a target “anywhere in Syria.”

The report follows an alleged Israeli strike at targets inside the Syrian border in acts branded as a violation of the UN charter. The new aerial corridors through Jordan will allow Israeli aircraft to avoid flying over southern Lebanon and inciting a possible aggressive response from Hezbollah.

Israel has repeatedly voiced its concern over stockpiles of chemical weapons in Syria and the possibility they may fall into the wrong hands. In late January the Israeli government issued a number of warnings to Syria before reports of an air strike on what Damascus claimed was a “scientific research center” emerged. Israel did not take direct responsibility for the strike, but Defense Minister Ehud Barak implied Israeli involvement.

“I keep telling you frankly that … when we say something we mean it. We say that we don’t think [Hezbollah should be allowed] to bring advanced weapons systems into Lebanon,” he told journalists in Germany a week after the attacks.

The US got behind Israel, stating that Washington had been informed prior to the strike on what was also said to be a weapons convoy heading to Lebanon.

 

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Israeli launch airstrikes into Syria, possibly targeting delivery systems for chemical weapons, US officials say

Speaking in Costa Rica, President Obama says that the entire world should be concerned about Syrian chemical weapons, especially if they fall into the hands of a group like Hezbollah.

 

MSNBC – TV

It’s believed the primary target was a shipment of weapons headed for Hezbollah in Lebanon, they said. A senior U.S. official said the airstrikes were believed to be related to delivery systems for chemical weapons.

An Israeli spokesman in Washington said that Israel would not comment specifically on the reports but said that “Israel is determined to prevent the transfer of chemical weapons or other game-changing weaponry by the Syrian regime to terrorists, especially to Hezbollah in Lebanon.”

 

White House officials referred all questions to the Israelis.

This would be the second time this year Israel conducted airstrikes inside Syria. In January, Israeli fighter jets attacked a convoy of sophisticated anti-aircraft missiles believed on their way to Hezbollah.

 

 

Read Full Article and Watch Videos Here

 

 

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Sources: U.S. believes Israel has conducted an airstrike into Syria

 

By Barbara Starr, CNN Pentagon Correspondent
updated 8:32 PM EDT, Fri May 3, 2013

 

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Sources say a strike mostly likely occurred in the Thursday-Friday time frame
  • The U.S. does not believe Israeli warplanes entered Syrian airspace

(CNN) — The United States believes Israel has conducted an airstrike into Syria, two U.S. officials tell CNN.

 

U.S. and Western intelligence agencies are reviewing classified data showing Israel most likely conducted a strike in the Thursday-Friday time frame, according to both officials. This is the same time frame that the U.S. collected additional data showing Israel was flying a high number of warplanes over Lebanon.

 

One official said the United States had limited information so far and could not yet confirm those are the specific warplanes that conducted a strike. Based on initial indications, the U.S. does not believe Israeli warplanes entered Syrian airspace to conduct the strikes.

 

Both officials said there is no reason to believe Israel struck at a chemical weapons storage facilities. The Israelis have long said they would strike at any targets that prove to be the transfer of any kinds of weapons to Hezbollah or other terrorist groups, as well as at any effort to smuggle Syrian weapons into Lebanon that could threaten Israel.

 

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REPORT: Israel Bombed Weapons Targets In Syria

israel

AP

Following a week of increased Israeli Air Force activity over Lebanon, Israel reportedly struck Syrian targets with their air force either Thursday or Friday the 26th of April.

Initial reports said the target was a chemical weapons facility, which was under siege by rebels at the time and had sustained no reported damage. Instead, according to CNN reports, it looks like Israel may have struck another convoy containing possible transfer of weaponsjust like the last air strike.

“We will do whatever is necessary to stop the transfer of weapons from Syria to terrorist organizations. We have done it in the past and we will do it if necessary the future,” an unnamed source told CNN’s Sara Sidner.

And just as they did in the last strike, Netanyahu had told his staff to remain silent on the matter.

So it hadn’t been reported by U.S. sources, until now:

From CNN:

U.S. and Western intelligence agencies are reviewing classified data showing Israel most likely conducted a strike in the Thursday-Friday time frame, according to both officials. This is the same time frame that the U.S. collected additional data showing Israel was flying a high number of warplanes over Lebanon.

The strike had been called out by sources on the ground earlier this week, which the Jerusalem Post reported. Like the last strike, sources tell CNN Israel did it without ever breaking Syrian airspace — though Lebanon is less than happy about usage of their airspace.

Oddly enough, Free Syrian Army sources on the ground who initially reported the incident differ in their account of the Israeli strike. They said Israeli jets circled over Assad’s compound in Damascus, which is obviously in Syrian airspace.

The Lebanese Daily Star confirmed heavy FSA fighting occurred near the plant, the Scientific Studies and Research Center, but troops lacked the resources to breach the heavily fortified site.

 

 

 

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Nasrallah suggests Israel launched the UAV in order to frame Lebanese resistance movement; says Assad’s friends won’t let him fall

April 30, 2013, 11:08 pm
Times  Of Israel

 

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah. (Screenshot Channel 2/Al Manar)

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah. (Screenshot Channel 2/Al Manar)

 

 

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah on Tuesday repeated his denial that his Lebanese-based militant group sent the drone that Israel shot down near Haifa last week, instead positing that the UAV was a false flag from Israel to create a casus belli.

Speaking to the group’s al-Manar TV station, Nasrallah said that the “accusations are an honor that we cannot presume to accept.”

 

He added that it was equally unrealistic to think “that the Iranian Revolutionary Guards in Lebanon launched the drone.”

 

Nasrallah also suggested the possibility that Israel launched the UAV itself, in order to frame Hezbollah. “Everybody knows that this organization has the courage to take responsibility for every action it performs, especially if it hurts Israel,” he said.

 

IDF fighter jets shot down the unmanned aircraft off the coast of Haifa on Thursday. According to a military source, the aircraft took off from Lebanon, where it was tracked by Israel, and was apparently sent by Hezbollah.

 

Deputy Defense Minister Danny Danon accused the Iranians of using Hezbollah to test Israel. “We’ll respond where we find fit, but there will be a response,” he said on Thursday.

Read Full Article Here

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Israel says it shot down drone near Lebanon

 

It’s the second such incident in about seven months, but this time Hezbollah denies responsibility.

 

 

Israel shoots down drone off northern coast

An Israeli military ship, background, and an air force helicopter operate next to a cruise ship off the coast of Haifa. The military said it shot down a drone five miles off the northern coast. (Ariel Schalit / Associated Press / April 25, 2013)

 

 

JERUSALEM — Israel said Thursday that it shot down an unmanned aircraft that had entered Israeli airspace off the northern coast near Haifa, the second such incident in nearly seven months.

 

Lt. Col. Peter Lerner, a military spokesman, said the drone was first detected as it was flying along the coast of Lebanon toward Israel. When it became clear that the aircraft was not going to stop or change course, Israel dispatched helicopters and F-16 warplanes to destroy it about five miles off the coast, as it flew at an altitude of about 6,000 feet.

 

A naval search for the downed aircraft was underway.

 

Military officials said they suspect the drone was sent by Hezbollah. The Lebanese militant group issued a brief statement on its television station, Al Manar, denying any role in the flight.

 

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, whose helicopter happened to be flying in northern Israel at the time of the incident and was temporarily grounded as a precaution, said he viewed the attempted border breach with “utmost gravity.”

 

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Bilal Hussein / AP

Pro-Syrian-government fighters from Lebanon stand guard at the border of the two countries on April 12. The head of Lebanon-based Hezbollah has threatened that his heavily armed group, backed by Iran, may become further involved in the battle against forces trying to topple Syrian President Bashar Assad.

BEIRUT — The leader of Lebanon’s Hezbollah militant group said Tuesday that Syrian rebels will not be able to defeat President Bashar Assad’s regime militarily, warning that Syria’s “real friends,” including his Iranian-backed militant group, were ready to intervene on the government’s side.

Hezbollah, a powerful Shiite Muslim group, is known to back Syrian regime fighters in Shiite villages near the Lebanon border against the mostly Sunni rebels fighting to topple Assad. The comments by Sheik Hassan Nasrallah were the strongest indication yet that his group was ready to get far more involved to rescue Assad’s embattled regime.

“You will not be able to take Damascus by force and you will not be able to topple the regime militarily. This is a long battle,” Nasrallah said, addressing the Syrian opposition.

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A look back at the conflict that has overtaken the country.

“Syria has real friends in the region and in the world who will not allow Syria to fall into the hands of America or Israel.”

Hezbollah and Iran are close allies of Assad. Rebels have accused them of sending fighters to assist Syrian troops trying to crush the two-year-old anti-Assad uprising, which the U.N. says has killed more than 70,000 people.

Deeper and more overt Hezbollah involvement in the Syrian conflict is almost certain to threaten stability in Lebanon, which is sharply split along sectarian lines, and between supporters and opponents of Assad. It also risks drawing in Israel and Iran into a wider Middle East war.

 

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