Assad seen winning back territory; U.S. intel ‘on Syria was totally wrong’

Officials said the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been briefed of the likelihood of an Assad victory that would end the more than two-year revolt in Syria.

The officials said Israeli preparations could include military reinforcements in the Golan Heights and northern Israel as well as additional aid from the United States. Continue reading

Israeli intel: Chemical weapons, ‘apparently sarin’, used by Syria in Aleppo attack

TEL AVIV — For the first time, Israel has provided details of Syrian Army chemical weapons attacks on Sunni rebels.

Officials said Military Intelligence has determined that Syrian President Bashar Assad was ordering CW attacks on the rebels in several areas around Syria. They said several CW agents were used in reduced form to prevent mass casualties.

“To the best of our professional understanding, the regime has made use of deadly chemical weapons against the rebels in a number of incidents in the past few months,” MI research director Brig. Gen. Itai Brun said. Continue reading

Russian official says U.S. now directing ‘Libyan scenario’ in Syria

A leading Russian official provided details of purported U.S. support of the rebellion against Syrian President Bashar Assad. Alexei Pushkov, chairman of parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee, said Washington was directing and organizing supplies of weapons and other equipment to Sunni rebels.

“The political maneuver phase has come to an end, and the West is
starting to implement a modified Libyan scenario in Syria, which is to ouster Assad by supporting rebels and providing them with weapons,” Pushkov said. Continue reading

Russian, Iranian advisors spotted in Syria by opposition

The Syrian opposition has identified senior Iranian and Russian officers
assigned to help the Assad regime. The Free Syrian Army said Iran and Russia
were helping the Syrian Army and security forces with tactics, technology
and operational planning.

“We warn all the snakes to go back to their dens whether it is Russia,
Iran and Iraq or Lebanon,” FSA said in a statement on Aug. 9.

The United States has asserted that Moscow was sending senior officers and other personnel to advise the Assad regime. U.S. officials said Russian advisers were maintaining Syria’s air defense network, which in June shot down a Turkish Air Force F-4 fighter-jet.

FSA has also abducted scores of Iranians later identified as members of
the elite Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. On Aug. 8, Iranian Foreign
Minister Ali Akbar Salehi acknowledged that former IRGC officers had been
captured by Sunni rebels.

Full article: Russian, Iranian advisors spotted in Syria by opposition (World Tribune)

Syria’s Assad holding most of his military assets in reserve

The regime of President Bashar Assad, despite nearly a year
of fighting, has been using only a fraction of its military might against
the Sunni rebel movement.

Regime sources said Assad, despite the massive assault on Homs, has
reserved most of his military assets. They said the president did not want a
bloodbath while Army commanders feared the breakup of their units.

“The assessment is that Assad and his advisers have prepared for a long
haul, and they would rather tire out the rebels than risk a rupture in the
military through massive assaults,” the regime source said.

Full article: Syria’s Assad holding most of his military assets in reserve (World Tribune)