Rumours of War

A chilling story from Israel at ddolan.com (H/T Kayce’s Korner):

Widespread media reports of possible imminent war with Syria—probably initiated by an attack upon Israel by its puppet Hizbullah militia force in Lebanon, supported by Palestinian Hamas fighters in the Gaza Strip, and possibly by Iran itself—have increased significantly in recent days here in Israel. Military analysts say this indicates something is indeed occurring on the ground to raise the war alert, as confirmed by army sources.

On Wednesday, Deputy Chief of Staff Dan Harel warned that Israel will respond “with a heavy hand” against anyone trying to target the country. Israel TV newscasts this evening are all featuring reports and analysis of the tense situation along the northern borders with Syria and Lebanon. Analysts are saying that while neither side probably wants war, the current tense situation could easily spiral out of control, given the heightened military alerts on both sides.

This all comes as Israel makes final preparations for the largest civilian home front war exercises ever conducted in the country, due to begin on Sunday and last through next Thursday. The cabinet is scheduled to meet Sunday morning in a special session meant to simulate an actual war emergency, followed by war drills in many hospitals, army bases, emergency response services, municipalities, police stations, etc. An actual war siren will be sounded on Tuesday morning at 10 AM all over the country. People everywhere will be instructed by the media in the coming days to respond then as if an attack was in progress, to test their preparations for the same.

Jerusalem Post military reporter Yaakov Katz confirmed on Israel state television tonight that IDF forces are on the highest possible level of alert in the north, in response to intelligence information that the Iranian-backed Syrian regime—supplemented by largescale army reserve call-ups reported in various Arab media outlets in London and elsewhere in recent days—have moved two armored brigades into the Lebanese Beeka Valley, where Hizbullah has its main military bases.

Katz said that while neither Israel or Syria probably wants a full war right now, the Syrians are wary that Israel will attack them if Hizbullah launches the promised “revenge” response to the killing of arch terrorist Imad Mughniyeh in Damascus on February 12, which the radical Lebanese group and its Iranian paymasters blame on Israel, despite denials of responsibility from Jerusalem. Katz added that Syria may be preparing for war because it knows that Hizbullah has a major operation pending against Israel, probably supported, if not ordered, by Iran—whose extremist Shiite leaders have vowed to avenge the car bomb attack on Mughniyeh, who was closely associated with them.

Speculation that a major conflict might be brewing grew after the Israeli security cabinet held a special meeting on Wednesday—usually only convened in times of heightened military tensions or activity—mainly to discuss the situation in the north. The cabinet then announced that authorities will begin distributing anti-gas mask and biological weapons kits to the general public in the coming days—adding to the growing sense of crisis. Still, officials pointed out the distribution process would take some time, and therefore did not indicate that Israeli leaders thought major conflict was necessarily imminent. This assertion was repeated today by President Shimon Peres, who said that mounting talk of imminent conflict was exaggerated.

Nevertheless, various Israeli media outlets reported today that officials suspect that Syria may have transferred chemical weapons to Hizbullah forces, including deadly Sarin nerve gas. This comes after Iranian Armed Forces Chief Hassan Firouzabadi indicated in February that short range nuclear warheads might have been sent to the rogue Lebanese militia force, which is partially commanded by Iranian Revolutionary Guards. Meanwhile a Syrian parliament member was quoted in the Arabic media today as confirming that his country is currently monitoring Israeli military communications with the help of advanced Iranian equipment and listening outposts set up in Syria.

Today’s announcement that Defense Minister Ehud Barak had cancelled a scheduled visit to Germany next week because of the heightened war jitters with Syria has definitely caught the attention of the Israeli public. All of the new war talk comes as the country’s hotels are fuller than they have been since 2000, with record numbers, especially American Jews, scheduled to come here next month to celebrate Israel’s 60th anniversary.

I continue to do weekly radio news reports on Israel and the region for several media outlets, including a Saturday update heard over the Prophecy Today radio network (listen to stream here) and a Monday report broadcast on the Moody Radio network (www.mbn.org) . I was recently on two “Front Page Jerusalem” panel discussion programs with Jerusalem Post columnist Calev Ben David, heard over the Salem Network, and I also continue to record weekly feature reports on Israel that are broadcast during Janet Parshall’s national radio program.

Last week, I filmed some TV reports in the besieged town of Sderot and the Gaza Strip border area for the Inspiration TV network. I am currently completing a feature article on Israel’s 60 years for the Jerusalem Post’s Christian Magazine and other publications connected to the International Christian Embassy. The Post article is scheduled to be published in May. I sincerely hope it will not be trumped by yet another war before it is printed, but I of course realize given the present news that it could well be. I was supposed to be in the United States on a speaking tour at present, but cancelled that some months ago mainly due to personal family reasons. Now I am wondering if I was just meant to be here for whatever action might take place over the next two months—but obviously only time will tell. One thing IS certain: We who live here do appreciate your prayers in these dramatic days.

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