Ops and Intel UPDATE
Exclusive: Amid new Iranian threat, Israel connects to America’s Ballistic Missile Early Warning System
April 15, 2008, 12:36 PM (GMT+02:00)
The 12th Space Warning Squadron, Greenland
Israel requested the hook-up to the BMEWS for early warning to defend itself against Iranian missile attack. Tuesday, April 15, Iran’s deputy C-in-C Mohammad Reza Ashtiani threatened to eliminate Israel from “the scene of the universe” if it launches a military attack on the Islamic state.
Israel could find itself targeted in a US or Israeli strike against Iran, or any war situation involving Israel, Syria or Hizballah. Tehran might also stage a pre-emptive strike if early intelligence was received of an impending US or Israeli attack on Iran, Syria or Hizballah.
April 14, 2008, 7:52 PM (GMT+02:00)
DEBKAfile’s military sources report that Damascus has deployed the 10th armored corps at the Massaneh crossing of Mount Hermon. It links up with the northwestern positions the 14th division took up last month on the Syrian-Israeli border which cuts through the Hermon range.
Syrian troops are now strung along a continuous crescent-shaped line from the central Lebanese mountains through Mt Dov on the western slopes of Mt. Hermon and up to southeastern Lebanon. This deployment, commanding Syria’s Israeli and Lebanese borders, is under the command of the president’s brother, Maher Assad.
Spy photos reveal 'secret launch site' for Iran's long-range missiles
BY: Michael Evans, London Times
The secret site where Iran is suspected of developing long-range ballistic missiles capable of reaching targets in Europe has been uncovered by new satellite photographs.
The imagery has pinpointed the facility from where the Iranians launched their Kavoshgar 1 "research rocket" on February 4, claiming that it was in connection with their space programme.
Analysis of the photographs taken by the Digital Globe QuickBird satellite four days after the launch has revealed a number of intriguing features that indicate to experts that it is the same site where Iran is focusing its efforts on developing a ballistic missile with a range of about 6,000km (4,000 miles).
A previously unknown missile location, the site, about 230km southeast of Tehran, and the link with Iran's long-range programme, was revealed by Jane's Intelligence Review after a study of the imagery by a former Iraq weapons inspector. A close examination of the photographs has indicated that the Iranians are following the same path as North Korea, pursuing a space programme that enables Tehran to acquire expertise in long-range missile technology.
New Intel on Al Qaeda's Western Recruits
By James Gordon Meek
On the heels of CIA Director Gen. Mike Hayden's recent "Meet the Press" appearance, in which he disclosed that Al Qaeda is recruiting and training operatives who "look western" in order to penetrate the U.S., another top spook offered a few additional scraps of information about the new threat on Friday.
"There is attention being given to finding people who can live in the west, have lived in the west, comfortably, and who can appear western, wear western clothing," Charlie Allen, chief of intelligence and analysis at the Homeland Security Department, told reporters. "I'm talking about people who are Caucasian and non-Caucasian."
Allen, who spent decades as a top CIA official, said there was "a shift in Al Qaeda's strategy" after the late 2005 assassination of Al Qaeda's external operations commander, Abu Hamza Rabia.
According to recent congressional testimony by Director of National Intelligence Mike McConnell, it only took Osama Bin Laden's fanatics a mere six months to begin bringing western converts into Pakistan's lawless tribal areas for training. The New York Daily News reported last year that top counterterror officials fear the western-looking operatives can more easily penetrate U.S. security by blending in.
"I would think that you'd believe that Al Qaeda would look to Europe and to North America for such operatives. That's something to which we're very attentive," Allen said.
He also echoed recent comments Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff made to The News, that no Al Qaeda operatives are known to have crossed the southern border from Mexico into the U.S. But, he added, "We do know that going back to 2004, the southern border is something Al Qaeda senior leadership has looked at."April 14, 2008 03:41 PM Link
What Does Iran Want From Latin America?
By Douglas Farah
Yesterday I spoke at a program sponsored by the Hudson Institute's Latin America center on the growing ties among Iran, Venezuela, and non-state armed actors such as the FARC, and the strategic challenges these alliances pose for the United States.
The topic that dominated the discussion (the panel consisted of Brian Fonseca of FIU, Julio Cirino of Fundacion Pensar, and was moderated by Hillel Fradkin) was the reasons for Iran's multi-billion dollar investment in a region where it has no historic ties, little economic interest and only a very small base of Shite Muslims to influence.
I explored some of these economic issues in paper I did last year for the International Assessment and Strategy Center but did not really answer the question asked yesterday, which is fundamental to our understanding of the dynamics in Latin America.
The enigma is what common ground could there be between a leftist, populist leader like Hugo Chavez of Venezuela, whose broad vision is a somewhat ill-defined, unified Latin America as Simon Bolivar dreamt of, to a radically conservative religious leader who theistic vision seems to be a world controlled by Sharia law, like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran.
The answer suggested seemed to be two-fold: a shared hatred of the United States and a desire to make Washington as nervous as possible about as many issues as possible; and a shared view of each other's regimes as revolutionary and fighting broadly for justice or a more just world order.
What is clear is that Iran sees a reason to do this, in a rather methodical and pre-meditated fashion. Given the financial and political strains in Iran, it must be important because it has continued uninterrupted for the past five years, at least. And if it is important to Iran, then it should be important to the United States. My full blog is here.April 9, 2008 01:35 PM Link
Iraqi WMD Found…In Syria?!
By David Schenker
Yesterday, the Jerusalem Post ran a short story about a soon-to-be released US-Israeli report on the September 6, 2007 attack on the alleged North-Korean supplied Syrian nuclear facility. The Post says the (Israeli) attack was related to Saddam’s WMD. This is the text of the relevant part:
'Report on Sept. 6 strike to show Saddam transferred WMDs to Syria': An upcoming joint US-Israel report on the September 6 IAF strike on a Syrian facility will claim that former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein transferred weapons of mass destruction to the country, Channel 2 stated Monday.
It’s a pretty remarkable story. Given Syria’s support for Saddam in the run-up to the war and the Asad regime’s ongoing efforts to support former regime elements after the fall of Baghdad, it wouldn’t be surprising if some of Iraq’s WMD actually made it to Syria. While many still believe that Saddam transferred his WMD out of Iraq on the eve of the 2003 US invasion, however, to date, no evidence has been found to corroborate the theory.
TEHRAN -- Iran is prepared to share its valuable experiences in “peaceful nuclear technology with other nations within the framework of the International ...
|Iran Nuke Laptop Data Came from Terror Group||Leaked: Mar-13-2008|
| Location: Tehran, Tehran, Iran |
POLITICS: Iran Nuke Laptop Data Came from Terror Group By Gareth Porter WASHINGTON,(IPS) - The George W. Bush administration has long pushed the "laptop documents" -- 1,000 pages of tec...