U.S. Official: Syria Should Worry About
By David Storobin, Esq.
The US is considering an attack on terrorists and Iraqi
Ba’athists hiding in Syria who, it believes, are directing many of the
attacks against Coalition forces in Iraq, a senior American administration
official told The Jerusalem Post. A recent attack in Mosul that resulted
in the death of 22 Americans was likely orchestrated from Syrian
territory. A group of former Iraqi officials and generals set up a “New
Regional Command” from which they orchestrate attacks against the new
Iraqi regime and the Coalition forces.
The Times of London is reporting that not only are the Syrians providing
Ba’athists and terrorists with a base of operations, but they are directly
involved in supporting anti-American terror and insurgency.
New sanctions on Syria are very likely. The recent “Syria Accountability
Act” left many loopholes and the Bush administration may be looking to
completely forbid all trade between Americans and Syria. Deputy Secretary
of State Richard Armitage confirmed to a Lebanese newspaper that the U.S.
is considering sanctions. President Bush, likewise, declared that
“nothing’s taken off the table” when answering a question about pressuring
the Syrian Ba’ath regime.
Richard Armitage also spoke of Syria’s continued occupation of Lebanon in
violation of U.N. resolution 1559. The United States may bring the issue
to the U.N. Security Council in January.
In addition to new sanctions, the U.S. official asserted that Washington
may become more “aggressive” in the coming months and predicted a
confrontation “unless the Syrians reverse their actions.”
“[W]hen you're being attacked from safe havens across the border – we've
been through this a lot of times before – we're just not going to sit
there,” said the American told the Jerusalem Post.
In recent days, Iraq’s Defense Minister accused both Syria and Iran of
supporting al-Qaida-lined Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and others looking to
undermine the new regime. The Bashar Assad administration denied the
charges as “baseless,” but Americans and Iraqis remain unconvinced.
The attack, however, is not considered imminent and is currently in
preliminary stages. Having said that, the Bush administration is not known
for backing out of decisions and follows through on their plans, no matter
the time and effort needed to execute them.
In an action reminiscent of President Bush’s demand to the Taliban to turn
over Osama and other al-Qaida terrorists, Washington has given Syria a
list of terrorists and senior officials in the Saddam Hussein
administration who must be arrested. Damascus has not responded to the
“If I were Syria, I'd be worried,” concluded the above mentioned senior
is a New York lawyer who received Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree from Rutgers
University School of Law. His Master's Thesis (M.A. - Comparative
Politics) deals with Extremist Movements in the Middle East and the
historical causes for the rise of fundamentalism. Mr. Storobin's book
"The Root Cause: The Rise of Fundamentalist Islam and its Threat to the
World" will be published in 2005.