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Steinitz: If US Plans Attack, Israel Will Know

Israel’s Minister for Strategy says America will have to take action on Syria.
First Publish: 8/25/2013, 11:14 AM

A Syrian rebel aims his weapon during clashes with regime forces
A Syrian rebel aims his weapon during clashes with regime forces
AFP photo

The United States will have no choice but to take action on Syria following the latest reports of a mass chemical weapons attack, Minister of Strategic Affairs Yuval Steinitz predicted Sunday.

“Washington won’t be able to stay quiet in the face of chemical weapons use by the Assad regime, and the West is expected to act,” Steinitz told IDF Radio (Galei Tzahal).

If America attacks Syria, Israel will know in advance, he continued. In such a scenario, he said, the odds of Assad responding with rocket fire on Israel “are relatively small.”

“In any case, we need to be ready in terms of both offensive and defensive capabilities,” he added.

United States President Barack Obama met with his top advisers on Saturday to discuss the chemical weapons attack near Damascus. The White House said that Obama will continue to gather facts before deciding on a course of action.

A preliminary assessment by U.S. and allied intelligence agencies has concluded that Syrian forces did use chemical weapons in the attack, with high-level approval from within Assad’s government.