There’s about a week to go until the United States picks a new President. The Israeli’s are going to have their elections sometime in January or February; more or less the time the new US President is getting sworn in. Israeli Forign Minister Tzipi Livni has failed to form a government and has urged President Shimon Peres to proceed with early elections. Livni heads the Kadima Party and Benjamin Netanyahu, the leader of the Likud Party will fight it out between them for control of the government. Amid the Parliamentary Maneuvering and the financial shockwaves there is Syrian activity in the region that gives everyone pause. Consider this from the Debka Net:
DEBKA-Net-Weekly 369 of Oct. 24 exposed the complete deployment – from the Syrian 4th Division along Lebanon’s northern border and the 10th, 12th and 14th Divisions on Lebanon’s eastern frontier opposite the Hermil mountains and the Beqaa Valley, and down to the Hermon Mountains facing South Lebanon and northern Israel.
Neither the Americans nor the Israelis had expected Damascus to round off this troop concentration so fast. It was taken for granted that Damascus would wait to the spring of 2009, after the rainy season. However, president Bashar Assad saw two advantages in going ahead before the Nov. 4 US presidential election:
First, Israel would be unlikely to strike in the days leading up to the US election and, second, Damascus would present the new man in the White House with a fait accompli.
Syrian military positions now range from points opposite the northern Lebanese town of Al Qaa on Mt. Hermil to points further south up to the Massena border crossing 50 km north of Beirut. The Syrian 4th and 12th Divisions abut on the 10th Division ranged opposite South Lebanon and the disputed Shebaa Farms enclave. The military chain continues with the 14th commando division positioned on the Syrian slopes of Mt Hermon opposite Israeli military positions.
The Syrians continue plans for war unabated while both Israel and America remain paralyzed by internal matters amid the raveging of an unprecedented global finical storm. This is a time when Syria can take full advantage of alied navle gazing and improve its position for hostilitys as best it can. Imagine the shock of the Syrians as they discoved a US Special Forces Team staged an operation inside Syria that took out an important terrorist leader! Syria has registed its outrage at the USA staging military actions within its borders and indeed the USA has admitted to the attack on Sunday that killed 8 Syrians including a terrorist leader. Consider the following from Fox News:
A U.S. strike on a network of foreign fighters in Syria killed its main target — an Al Qaeda coordinator who was wanted for sending foreign fighters, weapons and cash into Iraq, a U.S. official told FOX News.
Killed in Sunday’s attack by Special Operations Forces was Abu Ghadiyain, Al Qaeda’s senior coordinator operating in Syria who was closely associated with the leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq.
The attack came just days after the commander of U.S. forces in western Iraq said American troops were redoubling efforts to secure the Syrian border, which he called an “uncontrolled” gateway for fighters entering Iraq.
Ninety percent of foreign fighters enter Iraq through Syria, according to U.S. intelligence estimates, bringing cash to Al Qaeda in Iraq’s chief. They also are deadly — trained in bomb-making and willing to sacrifice themselves in suicide attacks.
It seems a very pointed message to Syria that even in the midst of electoral turmoil that the United States and Israel can still deal with Syrian Aggression should the need arise or should the advisability of a preemptive action against Syria be found necessary. The Syrians are making much of going on alert to defend themselves if Israel would attack them after this intolerable American Aggression! We’ve all heard this stuff before and one can only hope that the Syrians will realize that they can push only so far before, elections or not, there are grave consequences for their actions.
The Middle East continues to simmer and all indicators point to an eventual day of reckoning with Syria as well as Iran. The message has been delivered and now the ball’s in Syria’s court. Would they like to go to war now or later? It’s up to them.