Israel concerned about weapons transfer by Syria and Iran to Hezbollah

6 May 2010

Israel is becoming increasingly concerned about the transfer of weapons from Syria to Hezbollah. Head of the Military Intelligence’s (MI) research department Brig.-Gen. Yossi Baidatz said on Tuesday that “weapons are transferred to Hezbollah on a regular basis and this transfer is organized by the Syrian and Iranian regimes. Therefore, it should not be called smuggling of arms to Lebanon – it is organized and official transfer.”
Baidatz on Tuesday briefed the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee on the current state of affairs and stressed that “today, Hezbollah has an arsenal of thousands of rockets of all types and ranges, including long-range solid-fuel rockets and more precise rockets.” He added, “The long-range missiles in Hezbollah’s possession enable them to fix their launch areas deep inside Lebanon, and they cover longer, larger ranges than what we have come across in the past. Hezbollah of 2006 is different from Hezbollah of 2010 in terms its military capabilities, which have developed significantly.
“Hezbollah is in a tense spot between two different identities: Its commitment to Jihad and Iran, and on the other hand, its political considerations in Lebanon and the needs of the Shiite community. Therefore, it has quietly selected its current course of action. The MI believes it is not interested in another wide-scare confrontation with Israel, it fears it, but is preparing for it. The organization still publicly vows to carry out terror attacks against Israel.”According to the head of the MI’s research department, “Syria continues to march to both tunes, without being forced to choose between them by the international community. On the one hand, it is improving its ties with the West, with Arab states, and with Turkey, and is also regaining influence within Lebanon, and on the other hand, it is intensifying strategic and operational cooperation with Iran, Hezbollah, and the Palestinian terror.”
However, Baidatz noted that Syria considers a peace agreement with Israel one of its top priorities. “The MI sees a Syrian desire to reach an agreement, but on its own terms, meaning: returning the entire Golan Heights and American involvement.” According to MI estimates, in exchange for an agreement Syria is willing to alter its activity on the radical axis, but Syrian President Bashar Assad sees no change for progress with the current Israeli government, and is therefore unwilling to make any confidence-building moves.

source: ynetnews.com

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