The troops are poised, having been on site for a month, the line is drawn in the sand, ….. and to put us in between two already warring factions, . . . all it takes is an indication that Assad is willing to transfer the (non-existant) WMD’s out of Iraq, chemical and biological weapons into the hands of Al-Qaeda or other terrorist organizations ….. Or, as Obama warned, for Assad to use them on his own people …..
What are these weapons? Where are they from?
Good question, but one which the U.S.’s traitorous press corp will never ask! But, if you remember (as I do) and believe the reports of a convoy of semi-trailer trucks, many tens of miles long, (which I saw pictures of) . . . . . slowly moving these (non-existing WMD’s) from Iraq into Syria’s Bacca Valley (known as the valley of weeping), adjoining Lebanon, you’ll have the answer. You’d also have the answer for “why the delay in attacking Iraq” . . . . a few years back, but that too is a touchy question the governments don’t want to have to answer!
So except for bloggers and journalists too afraid to publish it here in the states, today’s London Times, this following story, (written by: Hugh Tomlinson, Sheera Frenkel, Deborah Haynes and Michael Evans), headlines rattle the security of the world, while at the same time, attract little attention in the USA.
London Times // August 24, 2012 Special Forces Ready On Border To Take Out Assad’s Chemical Weapons
By Hugh Tomlinson, Sheera Frenkel, Deborah Haynes and Michael Evans
Western special forces, including troops from France and the United States, are poised along the borders of Syria to secure and destroy the country’s arsenal of chemical weapons if the regime in Damascus collapses. According to intelligence sources, specialized military units from the Western allies have been in place for more than a month in Turkey, Israel and Jordan, ready to strike at Syria’s chemical weapon stocks and missile sites. They would intervene if the weapons were about to be deployed by President Assad or were in danger of being captured by rebels.
“The personnel are there, the equipment is there, the lift capability is there,” said one intelligence source in the Middle East. “There are people on the ground [inside Syria] assessing the logistics of landing and securing these sites. Preparations are under way for a mission to secure and destroy these weapons.” Intelligence sources said that British special forces were among those deployed in the region, but this was unconfirmed last night. The troop build-up on Syria’s borders underlines the mounting concern among Western powers and their regional allies that the largest stockpile of chemical weapons in the Middle East could fall into the hands of terrorists as the country fragments.
Militant groups operating in Syria, including al-Qaeda, have made it clear that they would like to seize chemical weapons, while the regime has hinted that it could transfer part of its arsenal to the Lebanon-based militant group Hezbollah if its survival is in doubt.
President Obama warned this week that the use or transfer of chemical weapons by the Assad regime would be “a red line” that could trigger US military intervention. Washington’s stance has been backed by David Cameron and President Hollande of France.
The issue was top of the agenda at a meeting of American and Turkish officials in Ankara yesterday, involving representatives from the US State Department, the Pentagon, US Central Command and the CIA. One US official who was at the meeting confirmed that intelligence on Syria’s chemical weapons was the “focus of the meeting”. He added that plans were in place to secure the weapons if it was felt that the Syrian regime had either lost control or was planning to use them against a civilian population.
The US plan includes bombing the chemical weapons sites to incinerate the toxic agents. General James Mattis, the NEW commander of US Central Command, has requested a force of two aircraft carrier strike groups. USS John C Stennis set off for the region on Monday to join USS Enterprise.
It is not just the size but the range of Syria’s chemical weapons stocks that is causing concern. Damascus is known to have manufactured mustard gas and the nerve agent sarin, and is believed to hold stockplies of VX and cyanide gas. Artillery shells, bombs and warheads for Scud missiles have been filled with these agents.
Four main production facilities have been identified, near the cities of Aleppo, Latakia, Homs and Hama, but intelligence on storage sites around the country is less clear. The number of stores has been estimated at almost 40.
Securing all the sites would be beyond the capability of special forces teams alone. At least 70,000 troops would be required for the task, according to a joint British and American analysis. The Pentagon plans a joint operation by American, Turkish, and Jordanian troops, with support from Israel. “Assad’s departure, which, when it happens, risks complete anarchy, will pose serious risks in respect of chemical weapons security. This is not a job that a few SF could manage,” a Whitehall source said yesterday.
The Assad Government is believed to have moved some weapons to more secure locations under the eye of the Syrian air force. Despite previous threats from Damascus, there is no indication yet that any of the stockpile has fallen into the wrong hands or is being prepared for deployment.
A former intelligence officer with the Syrian military, who recently defected to the rebels, told The Times yesterday that a cache of weapons had been moved to near the Lebanese border, where they could be transferred to Hezbollah in less than two hours.
This was confirmed by Israeli officials who are closely monitoring the situation along the Lebanese border. Israel has made it clear that it will act to prevent Hezbollah from acquiring chemical weapons.
“It is like they are taunting us. They don’t have any reason to give Hezbollah the weapons but to use them as a deterrent against Israel,” one Israeli former intelligence officer told The Times.
Dina Esfandiary, of the International Institute for Strategic Studies in London, said that President Assad was aware that using chemical weapons would amount to “signing his own death warrant“. The weapons sites are secured by his most loyal troops and generals.
But as the conflict deepens, there is a danger that defenses at the weapons sites could be weakened when the troops are thrown into battle. “As the strain on the regime increases, it will find securing those weapons more difficult,” said Ms Esfandiary.
It’s not coincidental that the last international observers left Damascus yesterday after the UN failed to extend their mission. Activists said that at least 100 people were killed across the country in clashes. Read the entire story here: