A leading Israeli expert on the Middle East suggested last week that with all the foreign involvement in the ongoing Syrian civil war, that conflict could be the harbinger of a much wider conflagration.
Prof. Itamar Rabinovich, a former Israeli ambassador to Egypt, told those attending a symposium at Tel Aviv University that in the eyes of the Arab world, the final outcome of the Arab Spring hinges on the results of the struggle in Syria.
According to Prof. Rabinovich, the Syrian conflict is a Middle Eastern version of the Spanish Civil War, which was itself a dress rehearsal for World War II.
Tag Archives: Middle East
The US will be courting danger in Syria but staying out is a greater risk, writes David Gardner
President Barack Obama’s decision to send unspecified “direct military support” to Syria’s rebels may have as its proximate cause the now firm US conviction that the Assad regime has used chemical weapons against them. But it will be seen across the Middle East as a choice by America to throw its weight behind a Sunni alliance against Iran-led Shia forces across the region – a conflict in which Syria is the frontline.
Into this bloodbath, the West is about to send planeloads of weapons.
Syria’s rebels, a loose alliance of army deserters, Sunni civilians and al-Qaeda-linked fanatics, are now to be armed to the teeth by the world’s only superpower.
It’s one thing for a few thousand fighters from Hezbollah to join the war, or for the Gulf state of Qatar to supply weapons… It’s quite another for the world’s strongest power to back Sunni rebels against Shia forces in a civil war.
America has a poor record in the Middle East. It may be about to get worse. And the war threatens to get worse, too.
Already the danger is not just deadlier fighting within Syria. That’s already happening.
Government forces are beginning a new offensive against rebels who control half of the second city, Aleppo.
Fresh from victory in the strategic town of Qusair, the army is turning to the city of Homs, the cockpit of the revolution.
Could Syria ignite World War 3? That’s the terrifying question as the hatred between two Muslim ideologies sucks in the world’s superpowers | Mail Online
Syrian conflict could engulf region in struggle between Sunni and Shia
Already claimed 93,000 lives and made 1.6million people refugees UK, France and U.S. taken different side to China and Russia
The crisis in Syria may appear to be no more or less than a civil war in a country many people would struggle to place on a map.
But it’s much more than that: it is rapidly becoming a sectarian struggle for power that is bleeding across the Middle East, with the potential to engulf the entire region in a deadly power struggle between two bitterly opposed Muslim ideologies, Sunni and Shia.
Already, the war inside Syria has resulted in 93,000 dead and 1.6 million refugees, with millions more displaced internally. And those figures are escalating rapidly amid reports of appalling atrocities on both sides.
NetTraveler virus found in computers in diplomatic missions of over 40 countries, including Syria, Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Qatar, and Iran
Computers in diplomatic missions and government offices worldwide have again been struck by a major virus, according to cybersecurity experts at Kaspersky Lab. The NetTravel virus, which Kaspersky uncovered in recent weeks, has attacked computers in diplomatic missions and government institutions in over 40 countries worldwide, including Syria, Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Qatar, and Iran. No “samples” of the virus have been found so far in Israel, Kaspersky said.
The attack is somewhat similar to the Red October exploit, which Kaspersky uncovered last year. In that attack, too, government and diplomatic computers were targeted. Israeli computers were found to be hosting the virus as well, but it was unclear if any data had been stolen.
A senior Hezbollah leader said the Iranian-backed terror group is ready to wage war against Israel in the Golan Heights.
Hezbollah’s deputy secretary general Naim Qassem said in a recent interview that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is ready to make good on a threat to bring his country’s civil war to Israel.
“I believe that the Syrian leadership is serious about opening the Golan front,” Qassem said in a May 25 interview that was translated Monday by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).
“If you remember the 1973 war, we started to resupply Israel. The Russians put all of their forces on alert. They were going to intervene in the Middle East, we were going to intervene in the Middle East, and this was going to spiral out of control,” Francona said.
“And this has the capability of leading to that confrontation because the Russians are backing the Syrians and if we declare a no-fly zone, they may feel that they have to intervene on behalf of the Syrians. We’re approaching a very critical time in this right now.”
The new threat stems from a cache of missiles Syria ordered from Russia years ago. They have yet to be delivered because of the ongoing civil war between forces loyal to the Syrian Ba’ath Party government and protestors trying to topple it.
Syrian President Bashar Assad said in an interview broadcast Thursday that he is “confident in victory” in his country’s civil war, and he warned that Damascus would retaliate for any future Israeli airstrike on his territory.
Assad also told the Lebanese TV station Al-Manar that Russia has fulfilled some of its weapons contracts recently, but he was vague on whether this included advanced S-300 air defense systems.
Israel “will know what to do” if Russia delivers anti-aircraft missiles to Syria, its defence minister said Tuesday, in an apparent allusion to another air strike on the war-torn neighbouring country.
“The deliveries have not taken place, and I hope they do not. But if, by misfortune, they arrive in Syria, we will know what to do,” Moshe Yaalon said.
His comments came after Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said providing the missiles to the regime of President Bashar al-Assad would be a “stabilising factor” aimed at deterring any foreign intervention in Syria.