Is Syria NATO’s Next Target?
Turkey secretly passed a message to Syria last week that if it does not implement major democratic reforms NATO may attack Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime, according to Egyptian security officials speaking to this column.
The Egyptian security officials said the message was coordinated with NATO members, specifically with the U.S. and EU.
Assad has been widely accused of ordering massacres on militants and protesters engaged in an insurgency targeting his regime.
The Egyptian officials said Turkish leaders, speaking for NATO, told Assad that he has until March to implement democratization that would allow free elections as well as major constitutional reforms.
The officials said the NATO message demanded Assad halt attacks against the insurgency and begin the process of democratization immediately.
Last week it was widely reported that Turkey gave the Syrian government a two-week ultimatum to come up with a set of reforms and asked Assad’s regime to withdraw its security forces from protest cities.
Those reports, however, did not mention any message passed to Assad on behalf of NATO.
Yesterday, the Spanish newspaper El Pais reported that Spain sent a secret mission to Syria in July to attempt to find a solution to the current conflict there and to offer asylum to Assad and his family.
While it is not clear what form any NATO military action would take against Assad’s regime, the Egyptian security officials told this column they would expect such action to mimic the international coalition that has been targeting Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.
The Libya bombings have been widely regarded as a test of a military doctrine called Responsibility to Protect.
In his address to the nation in April explaining the NATO campaign in Libya, Obama cited the doctrine as the main justification for U.S. and international airstrikes against Libya.
Responsibility to Protect, or Responsibility to Act, as cited by Obama, is a set of principles, now backed by the United Nations, based on the idea that sovereignty is not a privilege but a responsibility that can be revoked if a country is accused of “war crimes,” “genocide,” “crimes against humanity” or “ethnic cleansing.”
The Global Centre for Responsibility to Protect is the world’s leading champion of the military doctrine.
George Soros is a primary funder and key proponent of the Global Centre for Responsibility to Protect.
This column previously reported that the committee that devised the Responsibility to Protect doctrine included Arab League Secretary General Amre Moussa as well as Palestinian legislator Hanan Ashrawi, a staunch denier of the Holocaust who long served as the deputy of the late PLO leader Yassir Arafat.
In addition, the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy has a seat on the advisory board of the 2001 commission that originally founded Responsibility to Protect.
The commission is called the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty. It invented the term “responsibility to protect” while defining its guidelines.
Samantha Power, the National Security Council special adviser to Obama on human rights, was Carr’s founding executive director and headed the institute at the time it advised in the founding of Responsibility to Protect. Power was said to have been heavily instrumental in convincing Obama to attack in Libya.
Israel Prevents Attack On Pipeline
Israel stopped what would have been a spectacular border terrorist attack planned from inside the Gaza Strip, according to Egyptian security officials.
The Egyptian officials said there is information the attack Tuesday was aimed at the sole pipeline that supplies Gaza with gas. The pipeline, located in the Israeli town of Nahal Oz, is manned and provided by Israel.
Israeli security officials would not comment on the matter.
In a rare incident, on Tuesday, all electricity, phone and Internet service was suspended for about 18 hours in the Gaza Strip.
The blackout was reportedly caused by Israeli military bulldozers operating near the fuel pipeline in Nahal Oz, which is close to the Gaza Strip.
At about the same time the electricity went out in Gaza, the Egyptian officials said Israel passed a message for Egypt to be on high alert for possible attacks from inside the Gaza Strip.
The Egyptian officials said they have information that Israel was actually working to stop a cross border attack aimed at the fuel pipeline. The officials said the downing of communications inside Gaza was central to halting the attack.
The Egyptian officials said members of Jihadiya Salafiya, an al Qaeda-allied group in Gaza, are suspected of attempting the major attack along with elements of the Iranian-backed Islamic Jihad.
An attack on Gaza’s pipelines would be devastating for both Israel and the Gaza population, which relies on the supply lines for its fuel.
Since the ouster of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak in February, similar attacks have been carried out three times now on an Egyptian pipeline located in the Sinai desert that supplies Israel with about 35 percent of its gas needs. All three attacks have been blamed on Jihadiya Salafiya and likeminded Islamist jihad groups.
Palestinian Newspaper Reports
On ‘Alleged’ Jewish Temples
On a day that Jews worldwide fasted and mourned the destruction of their holiest site, the official Palestinian Authority newspaper reported on the “so-called destruction” of the “alleged” Jewish Temple.
Last Tuesday, Jews commemorated Tisha B’Av, a day on which numerous tragedies befell the Jewish people, including the destruction of both the First and Second Temples in Jerusalem, which occurred about 490 years apart.
On Tuesday, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, an official PA newspaper, reported on the “alleged Temple.” The article was translated from Arabic by Palestinian Media Watch.
The PA routinely denies the existence of the Temples as well as the Jewish historic connection to Israel.
Aaron Klein is Jerusalem bureau chief and senior reporter for WorldNetDaily.com. He is also host of an investigative radio program on New York’s 770-WABC Radio, the largest talk radio station in the U.S., every Sunday between 2-4 p.m. His new website is KleinOnline.com.