Israel to Syria: Use Chem Weapons & We'll Wipe You Off Map |
BY MATTHEW KALMAN in Jerusalem and BILL
HUTCHINSON in New York
DAILY NEWS WRITERS
Thursday, September 20th 2007, 4:00 AM
Israeli officials vowed to wipe Syria off the map if it is attacked with
chemical weapons like one that reportedly exploded in July at a secret Syrian
base staffed with Iranian engineers.
Politicians in Israel said yesterday they were not picking a fight with their
neighbor, but pledged to forcefully retaliate if chemical warheads come
screaming across its shared border.
"We will not attack them first. But if they ever use these weapons against
Israel, then we must be clear — it will be the end of this evil and brutal
dictatorship," Yuval Steinitz, a right-wing member of the Israeli parliament,
told the Daily News yesterday.
Sparking shock waves across the Middle East was a report in Jane's Defence
Weekly about an accidental explosion at a top secret Syrian base in July.
Citing Syrian intelligence sources, the report claimed a team of Iranian and
Syrian engineers were killed July 26 while trying to arm a Scud-C missile with a
mustard gas warhead.
Syrian official news agency, SANA, reported that least 15 Syrian military
personnel had been "martyred" and 50 others injured in the blast near the
northern city of Aleppo on the Turkish border. It claimed the early morning
explosion was caused by the high temperatures.
The SANA report mentioned nothing of Iranian personnel killed in the
Jane's said dozens of Iranian workers were among those who died when a fire
in the missile's engine triggered the explosion and release of a toxic cloud of
lethal chemical agents banned under international law.
U.S. intelligence sources played down the report saying they've seen no
credible evidence chemical weapons were involved in the Syrian
With James Gordon Meek in Washington
Original article: NY Daily News
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