Today I read an interesting analysis by Shimon Shapira, which was published at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs.
According to the findings of its report, entitled “Iran’s Plans to Take Over Syria“:
In mid-April, Hizbullah leader Hassan Nasrallah paid a secret visit to Tehran where he met with the top Iranian officials headed by Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and Gen. Qasem Suleimani, the commander of the Quds Force of the Revolutionary Guard Corps. Suleimani prepared an operational plan named after him based upon the establishment of a 150,000-man force for Syria, the majority of whom will come from Iran, Iraq, and a smaller number from Hizbullah and the Gulf states.
I think this is not all bad news for Israel.
Just imagine the scenario: a Chemical weapon goes missing in Syria. Between Al Qaeda and Hezbollah forces in Syria, who would Israel prefer to take the weapon? Although not a good choice (in this region we usually don’t have the luxury of having good choices), Hezbollah is far more balanced and deter-able than Al Qaeda.
Now of course there are those in Israel who don’t like Hezbollah and Iran – with good reason.
Nevertheless, in the short term, what is going on in Syria is good for Israel. How can it not be? Al Qaeda and Hezbollah are killing each other.
But in the medium to long term, instability in Syria will be bad for Israel. Which is why Israel needs to reach a deal with the PLO in order to prepare itself diplomatically for what is to come in Syria.
Israel must learn that its not enough to be prepared militarily for a future conflict. It also needs to be diplomatically prepared too.