Monday, October 15, 2007

Israeli Strike on Syria Aimed at 'Nuclear Reactor'

Slowly, but surely, little details are dripping out about the Israeli airstrike in Syria. The Guardian reports:

The target of an Israeli air strike on Syria last month was a suspected nuclear reactor in the early stages of construction which was attacked after intensive consultation with Washington, it was reported yesterday.

The New York Times said US and Israeli intelligence analysts had agreed that the reactor appeared to be built on a North Korean model, though it was unclear how much assistance the North Koreans were alleged to have provided.

It is not clear whether the Bush administration gave a green light to the attack. The US secretary of state, Condoleezza Rice, and the secretary of defence, Robert Gates, are both reported to have voiced concerns about the impact of a pre-emptive threat against a site that was many years from completion and therefore not an urgent threat.

Yet another pre-emptive strike with no legal basis. The site was clearly no immediate threat, so why did the US and Israel feel the need to launch an attack at this stage, particularly with the upcoming conference regarding the Middle East. The fundamental reason appears to be a re-assertion of dominance in the region in the face of an increasingly confident Iranian state. A confident Iranian state, needless to say, that we have empowered with Western foreign policy over the past four years.