According to an article published in the New York Times today:
In the last days of November, Israel’s top military commanders called the Pentagon to discuss troubling intelligence that was showing up on satellite imagery: Syrian troops appeared to be mixing chemicals at two storage sites, probably the deadly nerve gas sarin, and filling dozens of 500-pounds bombs that could be loaded on airplanes.
This discovery by Israel’s satellites alerted the Americans and the international community to take concrete action which was important, and timely. I don’t want to even imagine what would have happened if Assad had used chemical weapons.
This development however, is also likely to have other consequences.
Due to its accuracy, its likely to boost the Israeli defense establishment’s claims with regards to the Iranian nuclear program as well.
This will come at an important time as Netanyahu’s alarmist approach has created a dent in the credibility of some of Israel’s claims with regards to Iran.
It should be noted that in contrast, the defense establishment has been far more sober.
A clear example was seen earlier this year.
The chief of the IDF stated: “I do not believe Iran will decide to develop nuclear weapons”. This clearly states his belief that Iran has not decided to make a bomb and its General Gantz’s belief that it will not do so.
This is in complete contrast to Netanyahu’s famous UN cartoon which purported that Iran was on its way to make a bomb.
When it comes to assessing the Iranian threat, the choice for us in Israel is clear, more satellites and less “bomb-astic” cartoons by politicians.