North Korean, Chinese and Russian missiles reach Syria and on to Iran

Prime Minister Netanyahu’s visit last week to China and his upcoming visit to Russia next week highlight what has become increasingly evident: Iran is planning to take over Syria.

Yes, the visit to China was ostensibly about trade agreements –  indeed Israel and China signed a $400m trade agreement – and also about increasing China’s role in the Middle East peace process (as if more foreign interference were necessary).

But the visit was about more than diplomatic niceties. Israel is extremely concerned about Chinese missiles being sold or transferred to Iran. Similarly, Chinese missiles have been used successfully by the rebels in Syria, and the danger is ever-present that those missiles could find their way to Hezbollah.

Meanwhile, Netanyahu’s suddenly scheduled visit to Russia next week to meet President Putin is in order to dissuade Russia from delivering missiles to Syria.

A further danger to Israel comes from North Korea whose malign regime provides Iran with missiles, nuclear technology and even the Syrian nuclear reactor which Israel destroyed in 2007.

All these missiles and other weapons of mass destruction which are filtering in to Syria from all directions are eventually being used by Iran which in turn has its own expansionist designs on Syria.  At the Foundation for the Defence of Democracies, former CIA Director James Woolsey writes in “Breaking the North Korea-Iran-Syria nexus“:

Since the 1979 Islamic revolution in Tehran, the Assad regime, first under Hafez then under his son, has been Iran’s most strategic Arab ally. The two regimes’ relationship has been extensive and has included strengthening the Lebanese Shia terrorist group Hezbollah; military and intelligence cooperation; collaboration with North Korea on developing WMD’s weapons; and procurement from Russia and North Korea. China reportedly also remains a key procurement and transshipment point for Iran.[2] The axis of nuclear proliferation among Damascus, Tehran, and Pyongyang was revealed clearly in 2009 when Iran’s former Deputy Minister of Defense, Ali Reza Asghari, who defected in February 2007, disclosed that Iran financed Syria’s nuclear weapons program, the centerpiece of which was a North Korean nuclear reactor in Syria.[3] The reality is that Iran’s “line of resistance” in the region – its power – is underpinned by North Korean arms and technology. –



The sum total of all these facts, when added together, amounts to the fact that Iran is trying to take over Syria, as Dr. Shimon Schapira writes in the JCPA (via IMRA):

  • An important expression of Syria’s centrality in Iranian strategy was voiced by Mehdi Taaib, who heads Khamenei’s think tank. He recently stated that “Syria is the 35th district of Iran and it has greater strategic importance for Iran than Khuzestan [an Arab-populated district inside Iran].” Significantly, Taaib was drawing a comparison between Syria and a district that is under full Iranian sovereignty.
  • Tehran has had political ambitions with respect to Syria for years and has indeed invested huge resources in making Syria a Shiite state. The Syrian regime let Iranian missionaries work freely to strengthen the Shiite faith in Damascus and the cities of the Alawite coast, as well as the smaller towns and villages. In both urban and rural parts of Syria, Sunnis and others who adopted the Shiite faith received privileges and preferential treatment in the disbursement of Iranian aid money.
  • Iran is also recruiting Shiite forces in Iraq for the warfare in Syria. These are organized in a sister framework of Lebanese Hizbullah. Known as the League of the Righteous People and Kateeb Hizbullah, its mission is to defend the Shiite centers in Damascus. It is likely that Tehran will make every effort to recruit additional Shiite elements from Iraq, the Persian Gulf, and even from Pakistan.

[…]

  • In mid-April, Hizbullah leader Hassan Nasrallah paid a secret visit to Tehran where he met with the top Iranian officials headed by Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and the commander of the Quds Force of the Revolutionary Guard Corps, Gen. Qasem Suleimani, who is in charge of Iranian policy in Lebanon and Syria. The visit was clandestine and no details were divulged on an official level – except for the exclusive posting on Hizbullah’s official website of a photograph of Khamenei with Nasrallah beside him in the former’s private library, with a picture of Ayatollah Khomeini above them.1Suleimani’s involvement in the meeting with Nasrallah was significant. He has been the spearhead of Iranian military activism in the Middle East. In January 2012, he declared that the Islamic Republic controlled “one way or another” Iraq and South Lebanon.2 He now appeared to be prepared to extend Iran’s control to all of Syria.

[…]

In the past, senior Iranian officers, like Major General Yahya Rahim-Safavi, the former commander of the Revolutionary Guards who is an adviser to Khamenei, have said that Lebanon and Syria gave Iran “strategic depth.”4 Now it appears that Tehran is taking this a step further, preparing for a “Plan B” in the event Assad falls.

[…]

All in all, then, Iran will have to step up its military involvement in Syria. Khamenei’s representative in Lebanon will have to take part in building the new strategy in Syria, acting in tandem with Iran against the Sunni Islamic groups that threaten Iran’s interests in Syria.

[…]

It is likely that Tehran will make every effort to recruit additional Shiite elements from Iraq, the Persian Gulf, and even from Pakistan. For the Islamic Republic, this is a war of survival against a radical Sunni uprising that views Iran and the Shiites as infidels to be annihilated. This is the real war being waged today, and it is within Islam. From Iran’s standpoint, if the extreme Sunnis of the al-Qaeda persuasion are not defeated in Syria, they will assert themselves in Iraq and threaten to take over the Persian Gulf, posing a real danger to Iran’s regional hegemony. Khamenei does not intend to give in. Hizbullah’s readiness to fight shoulder-to-shoulder with Iran against the radical Sunnis could shatter the delicate internal order upon which the Lebanese state is based and bring about a Hizbullah take-over of Lebanon in its entirety.

Read the whole article for an eye-opening, if rather alarming, forecast of what is going on right on our northern doorstep.

If it weren’t for the fact that the outcome will impact on Israel, I would say “May both sides win”. Or lose, come to that. It really makes no difference. Unfortunately it doesn’t spell calm times ahead for Israel.

Meanwhile, the Syrian civil war has been spilling increasingly violently into Turkey, culminating in a devastating double car-bomb attack this weekend, killing over 40 Turkish citizens in Reyhanli.  The Turks immediately placed the blame on the Syrian regime, but the Syrians denied this.

Whoever is to blame, it is clear that the Syrian civil war is a clear and imminent danger to both Turkey and Israel: the former because the sectarian violence threatens to engulf Turkey; and the latter because of the danger of an Iranian takeover of Syria.

The only way to prevent disaster in the Middle East is for Israel and the West (and I include Turkey in this) to use all the diplomatic and political pressure available in order to persuade the Russians and Chinese to stop selling missiles and other technology to Iran and Syria, and also to work much harder to stop China from enabling North Korea in its malicious endeavours in the Middle East and beyond.

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8 Responses to North Korean, Chinese and Russian missiles reach Syria and on to Iran

  1. Is this part of your “Good News Friday” that got overlooked? What a delightful prospect of Turkey and the rest of the Al Quaeda Sunni subculture fighting and demolishing the Iranian/Syrian/Hizbollah Sheit barbarians for the indefinite future – with Turkey and the rest of the Western world unintentionally running interference against the Iranian coalition of Islamic savages for the benefit of Israel. What a wonderful use of the thousands of Al Quaeda suicide murderers to exercise their talents against the Iranians and their Sheit lackies . By the time Assad is gone, probably dying of old age, Syria will be such an economic and political liability it will drag anything trying to own it into its own abyss. In the meantime, who has the time or resources to attack Israel? Let’s see, where’s a good place for a summer vacation? Oh, I know….

    • anneinpt says:

      LOL, Elliott. You have a very good point. The only snag in your wonderful daydream (one that most of us Israelis consider with relish) is that these civil wars tend to not stay within their own confines and spill over across their borders. And who’s on the other side of said borders? Israel. At least on the other side of the Syrian, Lebanese, Jordanian and Egyptian borders. We’ve already seen terror attacks emanating from Egyptian Sinai inside Israel, Syrian mortars landing in the Golan, and constant tension across the Lebanese border. If we could only be sure they would keep their fighting to the internecine kind, we could relax and watch the show, but sadly in this region things never quite turn out the way we wish.

      Not only that, but the Muslim infighting inflames the Palestinians who, for lack of an available local Muslim enemy, take it out on the Israelis. Besides which, Iran is doing its darndest to take over Gaza via Hamas and infiltrate into the West Bank, which brings us a huge problem not only on our doorstep but within our house.

      However, as you suggest, as long as the fighting stays on their side of the border, may the best man lose!

  2. DavidinPT says:

    Regarding the Russian intention to supply SS-300 Anti Aircraft missiles to Syria, which Israel has declared to be a “game-changer” she won’t tolerate, how about Netanyahu (quietly, then openly) threatening Putin that if he does go ahead, Israel will supply the Chechen rebels on his own doorstep with similar, but Western, missiles which will no doubt seriously disrupt Russian transportation in Asia. What’s sauce for the goose…..

  3. Pingback: Russia is the major spoiler for Israel and the West in Syria | Anne's Opinions

  4. NEKI says:

    If you people know russia nad china are the only thing that prevents america and israel to take over middle east. People have right to defent themself from westren capitalism and new age slavery. I was growing up in a country that was in transition from socialism to capitalistic regime that was wrapped up in so called democracy. Before that we had great leader Tito who gave alot of effort to social stability, peace and economic growth of our fromer country. Now we sell everything my people acheved to foregin privat sectors who abuse the firms and factories to brink of bankrupcy. Then they close those establishments and put workers on the streets. Now we have 1/4 of population without job and numbers are still rising (400.000 unemployed out of total 2.200.000 residents( if you can imagine that we have alot of elder people and children )). In other words rich people only get richer and poor people get to be slaves and work low payed jobs just to pay the bills and feed their children despite working conditions are bad and abusing. We have fixed elections (after every election american delegates come to see how things are standing and if they dont like it they make sure that elected party is unable to form the goverment and then they put their puppet on the chair) and the law was ogmented to protect capitalistic bastrds that are destroying the future of my children and my grandchildren.

    This is the freedom west is selling to people so i say let them give all the weapons they want as long they use them for defense of their way of life and not to attack others.

    • anneinpt says:

      NEKI, I think you’re confusing two completely different situations. First I will address your first comment, where you said:

      If you people know russia nad china are the only thing that prevents america and israel to take over middle east. People have right to defent themself from westren capitalism and new age slavery.

      Where on earth do you get the idea that America and Israel want to take over the Middle East? Certainly as far as Israel is concerned, have you not noticed that:

      1) Israel is the smallest country in the Middle East and
      2) Israel has given land away to the Palestinians (Gaza and north Samaria) and to other Arabs: Lebanon and Egypt.

      What kind of “taking over” is that? You’ve got to stop believe all the propaganda that is fed to you and start thinking clearly for yourself.

      As for America, since she is the strongest and now the only superpower in the world, do you think that if America really wanted to take over the entire Middle East she wouldn’t have done so already?

      Now to address the other part of your comment: You speak about a very sad situation in a previously communist country (Yugoslavia) which became a westernised democracy. I understand that the transition was extremely painful, both politically and economically. However you cannot blame that on the West. Nobody forced Yugoslavia to change its political system and certainly America didn’t force capitalism on it. You certainly have my sympathy for the situation, and I remember reading about the dire situation both in Yugoslavia and in Russia and other previously communist countries. However, all political transitions are painful, and this cannot be blamed on the west. If anything, blame should be placed on the communists who drove your economy into the ground.

      You conclude with an unconnected opinion which doesn’t really make sense. You say:

      This is the freedom west is selling to people so i say let them give all the weapons they want as long they use them for defence of their way of life and not to attack others.

      Again, western freedom is not connected to the economic situation in Slovenia or Yugoslavia or wherever you are. And giving weapons to violent jihadists is not going to solve your economic or political problems any more than it is going to solve the problems of the Arabs. Giving them weapons to “fight the west” will not be used for defending their way of life but most definitely WILL be used to attack others. This has been proven again and again. It will result in the jihadists getting killed. It will also result in lots of Arabs getting killed by lots of other well-armed Arabs. Is that what you really want?

      It won’t be the west and Israel that suffers. We can look after ourselves. It will be the Palestinians, other Arabs and Muslims.

  5. fonseca says:

    [Redacted comment] America and allies always prevails we’ll take care of those terrorists and get it done with. They ain’t no match for us.

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