web analytics
December 20, 2014 / 28 Kislev, 5775
 
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post
8000 meals Celebrate Eight Days of Chanukah – With 8,000 Free Meals Daily to Israel’s Poor

Join Meir Panim’s campaign to “light up” Chanukah for families in need.



NY Times: No Smoking Gun in Syria Chemical Massacre

What happened to the intelligence intercepts implicating the Syrian government in the chemical attack?
UN inspectors outside their Damascus hotel. So far, there doesn't seem to be hard proof of the Assad regime's complicity in the August 21 chemical attack. The most U.S. officials are able to say on the record is that Assad must be punished for the atrocities that took place on his watch.

UN inspectors outside their Damascus hotel. So far, there doesn't seem to be hard proof of the Assad regime's complicity in the August 21 chemical attack. The most U.S. officials are able to say on the record is that Assad must be punished for the atrocities that took place on his watch.

According to the NY Times, American officials said Wednesday there was no “smoking gun” that directly links President Bashar al-Assad to the chemical attack in a suburb of Damascus August 21, when hundreds of people were reported to have been killed. The officials tried to “lower expectations about the public intelligence presentation,” cautioning it would not contain “specific electronic intercepts of communications between Syrian commanders or detailed reporting from spies and sources on the ground.”

This despite the news we read on Wednesday that the U.S. government possesses intelligence intercepts implicating the Syrian government in the chemical attack.

According to the online blog of Foreign Policy, American intelligence have recordings of a series of “panicked conversations” between an official at the Syrian Defense Ministry and the commander of a chemical weapons unit right after the attack.

According to the Times, Administration officials are saying that those panicked conversations are proof that the assault was not the result of a rogue unit acting on its own. But they’re not releasing the tape, and as the Times puts it: “It is unclear how much detail about these communications, if any, will be made public.”

If that tape had a real smoking gun in it, I tend to believe they would have released it.

But even without hard evidence tying Assad to the chemical attack, Administration officials told the Times, Assad bears the ultimate responsibility for the actions of his troops and should be held accountable.

“The commander in chief of any military is ultimately responsible for decisions made under their leadership,” State Department’s deputy spokeswoman Marie Harf asserted — even if, she added, “He’s not the one who pushes the button or says ‘go’ on this.”

What if it wasn’t his officers pushing those buttons? What if Assad’s seemingly ridiculous claims that he was framed turn out to be true?

The argument pushed by the Russians in support of this widely rejected idea, has to do with the reason evil despots—like Hafez al-Assad, the departed Syrian despot, and Saddam Hussein–choose to disregard all the international conventions in all the books and to use chemical weapons on their own people: they’re desperate. Tens of thousands of residents in some faraway region are pushing back your army and you need to cool things down quickly and decisively – you bring down the skin burning death on their poor souls.

But Bashar al-Assad is winning these days—goes the Russian argument—he actually has a chance, on paper, to take back much of his lost territory and to reestablish himself once more as the legitimate ruler of much of Syria. What reason does he have to sabotage his future relationship with the West through such a stupid violation of all that the West seems to cherish?

On the other hand, if you’re a desperate rebel army on the run, and the government army is reclaiming areas you’ve labored so hard to conquer – what simpler way is there for you to trap the enemy in a political quagmire from which he may never recover?

Unless the Administration doesn’t want a smoking gun.

In an interview on the PBS “NewsHour,” President Obama said he still had not made a decision about military action. He did indicate that, even if he gives the go ahead, the military strike could be a “shot across the bow, saying ‘stop doing this,’ that can have a positive impact on our national security over the long term.”

I wouldn’t be surprised if there are discussions going on between Washington, Damascus and, very likely, Moscow, as to which specific targets are going to be hit, and how many Tomahawks exactly will be spewing well coordinated hell-fire, and then everybody can go home, and the emergency will be officially over.

About the Author: Yori Yanover has been a working journalist since age 17, before he enlisted and worked for Ba'Machane Nachal. Since then he has worked for Israel Shelanu, the US supplement of Yedioth, JCN18.com, USAJewish.com, Lubavitch News Service, Arutz 7 (as DJ on the high seas), and the Grand Street News. He has published Dancing and Crying, a colorful and intimate portrait of the last two years in the life of the late Lubavitch Rebbe, (in Hebrew), and two fun books in English: The Cabalist's Daughter: A Novel of Practical Messianic Redemption, and How Would God REALLY Vote.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

6 Responses to “NY Times: No Smoking Gun in Syria Chemical Massacre”

  1. etabori says:

    DKurdistan JewishPress SaloumehZ The screwed up leftists of the NYT

  2. The US should not get involved in the Syrian mess, it can start the WWIII, let them kill each other, less muslims much clearer the world would be.

  3. The US should not get involved in the Syrian mess, it can start the WWIII, let them kill each other, less muslims much clearer the world would be.

  4. SaloumehZ says:

    etabori Amen!

  5. waynocook says:

    etabori DKurdistan JewishPress SaloumehZ Most of our newspapers are bemoaning their fall, not assoc. with their own views

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Posted to Twitter in Ferguson, MO by St. Louis County Police: "Bricks thrown at police, 2 police cars burned, gun seized by police. Tonight was disappointing."  Their motto is, "To protect and serve."
Prosecutor in Ferguson Case: ‘Witnesses Lied Under Oath’
Latest News Stories
Posted to Twitter in Ferguson, MO by St. Louis County Police: "Bricks thrown at police, 2 police cars burned, gun seized by police. Tonight was disappointing."  Their motto is, "To protect and serve."

Prosecutor in Ferguson case said ‘some witnesses lied under oath’ to support officer’s version of events.

Arab youth shoot fireworks during clashes with Border Police in Shuafat in Jerusalem.

PA Arabs are continuing near-daily clashes with IDF soldiers; on Friday, fierce fighting broke out after sermons at mosques.

False Alarm 2

Rocket fire was directed by Gaza terrorists at southern Israel’s Eshkol district on Friday for the third time since the summer.

Hamas on Temple Mount

Police must have been too busy arresting Jewish children to notice the Hamas rally on the Temple Mount today.

Was top Hezbollah terrorist a spy for Israel?

Reshet Bet has released their latest election poll…

Radical US Jewish lawyer involved in attempt to unite terrorists.

Israelis will Celiac disease will now be allowed to join combat units.

Teenager attacked Jews on their way to holy site.

Four in serious condition; doctors not sure why.

Liberman and Kachlon may merge right after elections – and the larger party will recommend Liberman for Prime Minister to the President.

A Chabad rabbinic student stabbed in “770″ has returned home from the hospital.

Arabs attacked an Israeli bus traveling between Arad and Be’er Sheva along Highway 31 Thursday evening.

The UN General Assembly approves resolution to refer N. Korea to the Intl Criminal Court at The Hague.

Israeli soldiers stand guard near large public menorah near the site where Dalia Lemkus, 26, was stabbed to death at a bus stop near the entrance to Alon Shvut last month.

US teachers are learning “3-D printing” from the Dept. of Defense.

More Articles from Yori Yanover
rain ATM

A Jerusalem woman is trying to hold on to her umbrella while withdrawing some cash at a Meah Shearim ATM, Sunday, March 9, 2014. The rain appeared out of the blue (which is how rain should), after a warm week that started to feel like summer. Well, it don’t feel like summer no more. Last […]

Rabbi Meir Mazuz (seen visiting a synagogue in Crown Heights, Brooklyn) declared in a public Internet psak that it is legal for a Jew to go up to temple Mount.

Needless to say, Shas, the Haredi Sefardi party, is not happy.

“The only difference between this world and the time of Meshiach is our bondage to the gentile kingdoms.”

Here’s the Israeli Navy boat INS Hanit arriving in Eilat on Saturday, March 8, 2014, after capturing the Klos C, which was carrying dozens of advanced Iranian-supplied weapons made in Syria and intended for Palestinian guerrillas in the Gaza Strip. Here’s Israeli Navy Commander Vice Admiral Ram Rotberg speaking with the INS Hanit soldiers in […]

Pat Condell has a new video out, so, sit back, have fun. By the way, Message to Offended Muslims should not be confused with Message to Off Handed Muslims. Also, I’d love to hear what he has to say about Haredim.

The description that came with this picture says: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks with American actor Bette Midler during an event at the house of Hollywood producer Arnon Milchan in Hollywood on March 6, 2014. But Bette Midler is not really an actor, she’s a singer who made movies for the LGBT community and […]

We will shut them up in the campuses, we will shut them up in the high schools, we will shut them up at the 92nd St. Y.

An Israeli female soldier (because they’re better at removing babies from their homes) evacuates a baby from a settlement in Judea and Samaria some time in the recent past. I’m thinking, if the baby was angry enough, couldn’t he evacuate in return, right there in her arms? Imagine the same picture, except with a settler […]

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/ny-times-no-smoking-gun-in-syria-chemical-massacre/2013/08/29/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: