As reports and analyses of what was said to be an Israeli attack on advanced Russian missiles dispatched from Syria to Hizbullah terrorist bases along the border with Lebanon, Syrian rebels said that Hizbullah had already received numerous advanced weapons from Syria – including chemical weapons. A report in a Saudi newspaper quoted Syrian rebel groups as saying that Syria had already last year transferred chemical weapons to Hizbullah.
Israel has said that transfer of such weapons would be a “red line” which Jerusalem could not ignore, essentially a declaration of war by Syria and Hizbullah against Israel.
The report in the Al-Wattan newspaper quoted a rebel spokesperson as saying that the transfer took place over a 40 day period in February and March 2012. The shipment included at least two tons of mustard gas, along long range missiles that could reach within 300 kilometers into Israel that were capable of carrying chemical weapons.
On Wednesday, western media reported that Israel had attacked a convoy carrying Russian-made SA-17 anti-aircraft missiles from Syria to Hizbullah terrorist bases along the border with Lebanon. The US later said that Israel had confirmed this. But in a statement, Syria denied that Israel had struck the missiles, but that it had hit a military research center in a Damascus suburb. Israel has yet to make a public statement on either allegation.
Reports in the American media said that the convoy that was targeted by Israel carried conventional weapons, not chemical weapons. The Washington Post quoted an unnamed American government official as saying that there was “no connection” between Israel’s declared intolerance of Syrian chemical weapons and Wednesday’s attack.