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August 29, 2015 / 14 Elul, 5775
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Posts Tagged ‘Syria’

Two Mortar Shells Explode on Golan Heights

Monday, August 3rd, 2015

Two mortar shells fired from Syria exploded in the northern Golan Heights late Monday afternoon.

No physical injuries or property damage was reported. One person suffered shock.

The IDF said that the shells exploded in an agricultural area. It estimates they were the result of stray fire in the Syrian war and were not intentionally aimed at Israel.

The Golan Heights has been hit dozens of times the past year by rifle fire and mortar shells, sometimes aimed at soldiers and civilians.

Iran Banks on End to Sanctions, Will Raise Oil Production to 1M bpd

Sunday, August 2nd, 2015

Iran is already banking on the passage of the nuclear deal it signed with the U.S. and world powers last month in Vienna. Its government plans to raise its output of oil to one million barrels per day within months after sanctions are lifted, according to Oil Minister Bijan Zanganeh.

In remarks broadcast on Sunday, Zanganeh said, “We are already doing the marketing, and within a day after the lifting of sanctions, we will raise [production] by 500,000 barrels per day.” Within months, he said, production would double to one million bpd.

Much of the current oil production in the Middle East is flowing from Iraqi Kurdistan through Turkey into Europe and elsewhere, although some of the oil still comes from Iran. There may soon be competition from another quarter, however.

Recently the executive director of Russia’s Union of Gas and Oil Industrialists told RIA Novosti, however, that as soon as the situation in Syria is stabilized, Russian oil and gas companies are likely to revive their contracts with that government.

Gissa Guchetl told the newspaper the companies held contracts worth a total of $1.6 billion, that froze their work because of the civil war that has since destroyed that country.

Nevertheless, he said, “If military actions cease and the situation becomes stable … [they] will be ready to renew their activity within a short period of time.” A week ago Guchetl met in Damascus over the issue with Syrian Prime Minister Wael Nadr Halqi and Petroleum and Mineral Resources Minister Suleiman Abbas.

The two Syrians told Guchetl they are interested in Russian companies supplying crude and other oil products to Syria, and in cooperation with Chinese firms to increase oil exploration in Syrian fields that are safe from “rebel attacks.”

Foreign Ministry Calls Sunni Arab Nations ‘Israel’s Allies’

Thursday, July 30th, 2015

 

Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama dreamed about a “new Middle East” under the leadership of the United States. They were dead wrong.

They may have fantasized that they could make peace between Israel and Sunni Muslim states, the foremost being Saudi Arabia, but their worst nightmares did not envision such an alliance being formed in opposition to none other than the United States.

Dore Gold, director of Israel’s Foreign Ministry and former Ambassador to the United Nations, finally spelled out on Wednesday what Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has whispered for months. The Muslims and the Jews have two common problems. One is an enemy, meaning Iran, which threatens to rule an Islamic Caliphate with or without a nuclear weapon.

The other problem is the Obama administration, which is appeasing the enemy.

Prime Minister Netanyahu has stated several times that Israel and Saudi Arabia have a common interest in making sure that Iran does reach nuclear weapons capability. Gold went a lot farther in his message last night to the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations.

Referring to Iran, he said:

What we have is a regime on a roll that is trying to conquer the Middle East and it’s not Israel talking, that is our Sunni Arab neighbors — and you know what? I’ll use another expression – that is our Sunni Arab allies talking.

Allies?

What happened to the “unshakeable bond” between the United States and Israel? It is there as long as people believe it. An era does not in a day, and American Jews will believe in that “unshakeable bond” for a long time to come because it makes them feel good.

And isn’t it President Barack Obama who is ready help arm Israel once again, after having forced it to be armed to the teeth by surrendering to many of Iran’s terms in his ObamaDeal, which Israel and the Sunni Arabs are certain is nothing more than a well-paved diplomatic road to hell?

Americans are too far away from the shores of the Middle East to feel the threat of a nuclear-armed Iran the way Jews in Israel and Muslims in the Gulf States feel it.

If Israel and its “allies” were to get it through the State Dept.’s thick skull that a nuclear-armed Iran is no less of a threat to the United States that it is to the United States, perhaps Americans would worry a bit more about Tehran and less about Mexican immigrants, homosexual marriages and Donald Trump.

Gold was upbeat, or at least tried to sound that way, about future relations between Israel and the United States in the likely event that Congress will not be able to ditch ObamaDeal.

He said:

We will find a practical way to come up with solutions to a very dangerous situation. But in the meantime we have to tell what we think about this agreement. We have to say the truth even though it’s unpleasant.

It also may be very unpleasant for President Obama amid his successor to realize that  their influence in the Middle East is dwindling. President Obama was overjoyed at the Arab Spring rebellions for “democracy,” which in the Muslim Middle East means “anarchy” and which was the reality for too long a time in Libya, Yemen, Tunisia, Egypt and Syria. Iraq is a lost cause.

Obama may have reached out Muslims, but he grabbed a handful of radical Islam that now threatens more than half the world.

He, like most other American politicians, assumes that Israel has no choice but to rely on the “unshakeable bond” with the United States.

Update: Child Killer Samir Kuntar Dead in Alleged Israeli Air Strike

Wednesday, July 29th, 2015

Lebanese Druze child-killer Samir Kuntar reportedly was killed in the alleged Israeli air strike carried out Wednesday morning near the Syrian Golan Heights village of Hader.

Five people died in the strike, including Kuntar and a second Hezbollah terrorist, along with three pro-regime “Popular Committee” fighters, according to the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Israeli fighter jets allegedly targeted the group as their vehicle traveled in the outskirts of the Druze village of Hader. The air strike has not been confirmed by Israel, which has declined to confirm or deny reports of the attack.

Last April media also reported that Israel had attacked targets in Syria, but it later became clear that Syrian opposition forces had carried out the attacks.

In January, Israel attacked a group of six Iranian-backed Hezbollah fighters in Quneitra, a military source confirmed, saying they were “terrorists who intended to attack Israel.” Among the dead at that time was Hezbollah commander Jihad Mughniyeh, commander of the Syrian Golan sector where today’s attack was carried out. Mughniyeh was the son of the late Hezbollah international operations chief Imad Mughniyeh, assassinated February 12, 2008 in Damascus. Several Iranian troops were also killed in that attack, the semi-official Iranian Tabnak news site reported, including an Iranian commander.

Samir Kuntar Set Up Terror Network in Golan Heights
Samir Kuntar, who became a senior officer in the Hezbollah terror organization after his release from an Israeli prison in 2008, had set up a terror network on the Syrian side of the Golan Heights in recent months.

The former Druze member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) served nearly 30 years in an Israeli prison for leading an April 1979 terror attack on Nahariya. Kuntar was responsible for killing three members of the Haran family, including two small children and their father, plus an Israeli police officer. Almost 30 years later he was among five living and 199 dead terrorists swapped for the bodies of IDF reservists Eldad Regev and Ehud Goldwasser. The Israeli soldiers were abducted and killed by Hezbollah in a cross-border raid that ignited the 2006 Second Lebanon War.

In May of this year, a terrorist cell attempted to place an explosive charge along Israel’s border with Syria, up in the Golan Heights. Defense officials told reporters they believe the cell was headed by Kuntar, operating on instructions from Iran. Reportedly the cell was operating in retaliation for an air strike attributed to Israel destroyed weapons that were being handed over to Hezbollah by the Syrian regime. Sources said the defense establishment believes the cell was being instructed directly from Tehran, rather than via Hezbollah.

Kuntar’s No. 2 Was Golan Druze Villager
Kuntar’s second-in-command – Muwafaq Badiyeh – was assassinated on June 17 in an alleged car bombing on the road between Quneitra and Damascus. The Hezbollah-backed Al Akhbar newspaper blamed the attack on “Mossad agents.”

Badiyeh, like Kuntar, was a Druze and lived his entire life in Hader, and continued to live in the village until his death last month. The village is one of the few in the Syrian Golan Heights – other than Quneitra – that retains its loyalty to the regime.

Kuntar Was Inciting Israeli Druze in Golan Heights
Kuntar had been actively inciting Druze citizens in Israel as well as in Syria to violence in the Golan Heights, community leaders warned. Last month’s lynch by Israeli Druze of an IDF ambulance carrying wounded Syrians to a medical center for expert care was attributed by community leaders to incitement by Kuntar.

“The man … fueling the violent events here in Samir Kuntar,” the chairman of the Druze and Circassian local councils, Jabber Hamud said last month. “We’ve known this fo some time and I call on the heads of the defense establishment to do all that is necessary.”

IDF Flies Reconnaissance Mission in Southern Lebanon

Monday, July 20th, 2015

The Israel Air Force flew reconnaissance aircraft over southern Lebanon while soldiers patrolled along the border, the Lebanese Naharnet website reported Monday.

Four armored vehicles reported with approximately 15 soldiers were deployed near the village of al-Ghajar, which straddles the border and is claimed by both Lebanon and Syria.

Update: Suspected ISIS Suicide Attack Kills 28 in Turkey

Monday, July 20th, 2015

A suicide bomber killed at least 28 people and wounded 100 others in an attack on a Turkish cultural center near the Syrian border Monday, the Turkish Hurriyet newspaper reported.

Official think that the deadly bombing was carried by a member of the Islamic State (ISIS).

The cultural center is located directly across from the border. The bomber struck while approximately 300 members of the Federation of Socialist Youth Associations were at the center

Hezbollah Distributing Gas Masks to Fighters at Syrian Front

Monday, July 20th, 2015

(JNi.media) Eyewitnesses have reported that Hezbollah forces in Al-Zabadani, on Lebanon’s border with southwestern Syria, have begun distributing gas masks to their fighters on this front.

Apparently, the Hezbollah Command estimates that as their pressure on ISIS rebel forces besieged in Al-Zabadani increases, so will the chance that ISIS will try more desperate measures to alleviate the pressure.

In May and June, ISIS forces launched a surprise, fierce attack on Hezbollah forces in Jabal Qalamun, some 45 miles east of Al-Zabadani, in order to force Hezbollah to move troops from Zabadani to Qalamun, to eases the pressure on the defenders of Zabadani.

The fighting between Hezbollah and ISIS has become an all-out, savage war, without rules or restrictions, and there have been several unconfirmed reports that ISIS is using chemical weapons against its opponents in Syria.

Back in February, Islamist fighters in Libya captured chemical weapons from storage areas in southern and central parts of the country, according to several reports in the Arab media. A Libyan military official told the London-based daily Asharq al-Awsat that “before his death, Gaddafi left approximately one thousand cubic tons worth of material used for manufacturing chemical weapons and about 20,000 cubic tons of mustard gas.”

Those stockpiles also included the nerve agent Sarin, the Syrian Army’s favorite last-resort weapon. It was estimated at the time that some of the Libyan chemical weapons found their way to Hezbollah hands, as well as to the Gaza Strip.

Hezbollah casualties in Al-Zabadani are mounting, according to reports, and the organization has inaugurated a new cemetery near the town.

The “Syrian Rebels Gathering” Facebook page published the list of casualties in Syria for the holy month of Ramadan that just ended, a month when, traditionally, wars are not waged.

1,689 were killed in Syria during Ramadan, 1,394 of them civilians, 176 children. These figures do not include non-Syrian combatants.

Some estimates suggest Hezbollah casualties in Syria have reached 1,000 as of last June.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/hezbollah-distributing-gas-masks-to-fighters-at-syrian-front/2015/07/20/

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