Once again, this blog hails Sayeret Matkal, Israel’s most elite special ops forces. As a matter of record, and without exaggeration, it was a great honor to have been best friends with one of its elite commandos, Tsafrir Ronen, z”l (of blessed memory), who participated in the raid on Entebbe and so many other nation-saving missions – Israel’s Hero, My Hero – www.israelnationalnews.com/Articles/Article.aspx/8469#.UQTisScqZn0
It is also no secret that Jerusalem has been practicing the “art” of sabotage against Iran’s genocidal program, extrapolated within – adinakutnicki.com/2012/10/28/israeli-sabotage-via-its-elite-commando-forces-offers-possible-alternative-to-all-out-military-pre-emption-frying-irans-grids-commentary-by-adina-kutnicki/. As such, “this and that” has been going boom in the night. Of course, no one directly takes credit, though certain hints have been dropped. Therefore, the latest from DEBKAfile Intelligence is more than noteworthy.
‘Iranian-Hizballah convoy blown up on Syrian Golan. Border tensions shoot up’
DEBKAfile Special Report January 26, 2013,
At least eight officers were killed in a mysterious twin-car bomb explosion Friday, Jan. 25 at Syrian regional intelligence headquarters in Quneitra on the Syrian side of the Golan Heights. Some of the fatalities were Syrian, but Western intelligence sources disclosed to DEBKAfilethat most were high-ranking Iranian Al Qods Brigades and Hizballah officers. The blasts sent tensions shooting up on the Israeli and Jordanian borders with Syria. Israeli, Jordanian and US Special Forces posted in the kingdom went on high alert. Heavy Syrian reinforcements were seen streaming toward the two borders.
Syrian regime sources said the explosive devices were attached to the intelligence command building’s outer walls. But the Western sources report that two large bomb cars were lying in wait on both sides of the road leading to the Syrian HQ and were detonated as the two-car convoy of Iranian and Hizballah officers drove by. There were no survivors.
Those sources also refute reports that the al-Qaeda linked Jabhat al-Nusrah fighting with the Syrian rebels claimed responsibility for the attack. This was a rare occasion when no Syrian opposition group issued any statement at all, they said. The speed with which Syrian army helicopters flew in to remove the casualties indicated their high rank.
In the view of a Jordanian military source, this attack by an unknown hand has delayed Bashar Assad’s advanced preparations for an all-out armored offensive to finally crush the revolt against his regime. His first targets were to have been the rebel-held villages along the Israeli and Jordanian borders.
The Syrian ruler was working to a plan of operations his generals had drawn up with Iranian Al Qods Brigades strategists.
Saturday, Ali Akbar Velayati, an aide to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, warned that Iran would consider any attack on Syria an attack on itself: “Syria has a very basic and key role in the region for promoting firm policies of resistance [against Israel]… For this reason an attack on Syria would be considered an attack on Iran and Iran’s allies.”
Meanwhile in Iran itself, the Fordo underground uranium enrichment plant was again reported targeted for sabotage, according to an unconfirmed report published by Reza Kahlil, who is described as a former Iranian Revolutionary Guards officer who worked under cover as a double agent for the CIA until he escaped to the United States.
Kahlil reported that at 11:30 a.m., Monday, Jan. 21, the day before Israel’s general elections, a large explosion occurred 100 meters deep inside the underground plant, trapping 240 nuclear staff in the third centrifuge chamber. Among them, he said, were Iranian and Ukrainian technicians.
There was no information about casualties or the extent of damage to the 2,700 centrifuges which have been turning out 20-percent enriched uranium.
Khalil cited his source as Hamidreza Zakeri, a former Iranian Intelligence Ministry agent, who said the regime believes the blast was sabotage and the explosives could have reached the area disguised by the CIA as equipment imported for the site or defective machinery.
None of the information about an explosion at Fordo has been verified either by US officials or regime sources in Tehran.
Thursday, Jan. 24, Israel’s Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz and Military Intelligence Director Maj. Gen. Aviv Kochavi ceremonially promoted Col. G., commander of the elite Sayeret Matkal, to the rank of major general in recognition of his unit’s “outstanding covert operations.”
And the plot thickens, as news of Fordo’s booms reverberate around the world –
‘WND REPORT BLOWS IRAN NUKE PROGRAM WIDE OPEN’
Islamic regime scrambles as news of explosion catches fire worldwide
News of an explosion at one of Iran’s nuclear facilities – broken exclusively by WND – is exploding around the world, with independent confirmation and international response pouring in.
“Israel believes the Iranians have not evacuated the surrounding area. It is unclear whether that is because no harmful substances have been released, or because Tehran is trying to avoid sparking panic among residents.” Also on Sunday, Israel’s acting defense minister called the news “welcome,” and a German newspaper said its own source in Tehran confirmed the report, even while Iran is trying to keep the news under wraps. WND’s exclusive report revealed an explosion last Monday deep within Iran’s Fordow nuclear facility destroyed much of the installation, trapping scores of people, including scientists and workers, many of whom are foreign workers. According to a member of the security forces at the site, both elevators and the emergency exit had collapsed, and the regime fears loss of lives due to possible radiation after the explosion. The information comes through Hamidreza Zakeri, a former member of the regime. The Iranian regime further believes the blast was sabotage and the explosives could have reached the area disguised as equipment or in the uranium hexafluoride stock transferred to the site, the source said. The explosion occurred at the third centrifuge chambers, with the high-grade enriched uranium reserves below them.
At midnight Sunday, Tehran time, however, all regime-controlled media published a two-line announcement by the deputy of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, Shamsoldin Berberoodi, that no explosion had taken place at Fordow. Iran does not want word of the sabotage to leak out because it would badly damage its negotiating position in talks with the 5+1 (the United States, Britain, France, Russia, China and Germany), WND’s source said. Indeed, the two-line announcement said the reports of the explosion are meant to bring pressure on Iran at the talks.
The regime’s defense ministry, which runs the country’s nuclear program, has dispatched the drill team from the Revolutionary Guards Khatam al-Anbia base to the site, the source said, but as of today no progress had been made to reach those trapped within. According to the source, the regime has enforced a total blackout on the media and the families of the employees who work at the site. The security forces have also created a security zone around the site to control access and manage the rescue efforts.
The source said the regime’s security forces have attacked many moderate media offices, shutting down their activity and Internet sites. There is no information if these attacks were related to the Fordow explosion. The site, which is about 300 feet under a mountain and immune to airstrikes and most bunker-buster bombs, is the Islamic regime’s main site, with its more than 2,700 centrifuges to enrich uranium to the 20 percent level, raising international concern about Iran’s nuclear bomb program.
WND’s Jan. 24 report on the sabotage was covered internationally on Sunday with Israeli Acting Defense Minister Avi Dichter stating that, “Any explosion in Iran that doesn’t hurt people but hurts its assets is welcome.” Israel’s biggest daily, Yediot Ahronot, led its Sunday paper with a headline: “The most significant incidence of sabotage in the Iranian nuclear program to date.”
As reported by Globes Online out of Israel, “Yediot Ahronot cites U.S. conservative website ‘WND’ as reporting … that former Iranian Republican Guard commander Reza Kahlili, recruited by the CIA and who defected to the U.S., claimed that Iranian sources reported a huge explosion last Monday at Fordow’s centrifuges room. They claim that the explosion destroyed a significant portion of the facility and that 240 workers were trapped underground.”
The Jerusalem Post mentioned WND’s report and added a quote from Emily Landau, director of the Arms Control and Regional Security Project at the Tel Aviv-based Institute for National Security Studies, who noted that Iran is enriching uranium to 20 percent at Fordow, “and it raises concerns because it is buried deep in a mountain.”
Germany’s Die Welt published the report with a headline, “Expert reports severe explosion at nuclear plant.”
“According to a report by Iran expert Reza Kahlili on the Iranian nuclear facility of Fordow, a few days ago a huge explosion took place which destroyed large parts of the plant,” Die Welt said. “Kahlili says he got this information from a former Iranian intelligence official.”
Die Welt, with sources close to the German intelligence agency BND (Bundesnachrichtendienst), corroborated the WND report by stating that now, Welt am Sonntag (a well-respected German Sunday newspaper) “has received information from an Iranian intelligence service contact confirming that the explosion had actually happened and that 190 workers at the nuclear plant were cut off from the outside world.”
The German newspaper Spiegel also gave big coverage to the story, along with others worldwide.
Interestingly, the Israeli DEBKAfile, known to be close to Israeli intelligence in covering the WND story, stated that on Jan. 24, Israeli Chief of Staff, Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz and Military Intelligence Director Maj. Gen. Aviv Kochavi ceremonially promoted “Col. G.,” commander of the elite Sayeret Matkal, to the rank of major general in recognition of his unit’s “outstanding covert operations.”
As reported Jan. 21, also exclusively on WND, the Iranian regime’s intelligence ministry had received information from an alleged spy planted inside Israel’s spy agency, Mossad, that Israel and certain Western countries, quite aware of Iran’s nuclear bomb program and believing time is of the essence, have drawn up plans for covert operations to destroy Iran’s nuclear installations, thereby avoiding a large-scale war.
Regime officials held two high-level meetings on Tuesday afternoon, one at the presidential building and the other at the supreme leader’s residence. The source for this information could only say that all high-level officials participated in the meeting with Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and that it lasted till about 9:30 p.m. Tehran time.
Several Iranian nuclear scientists have been assassinated in recent years, and last year saboteurs struck the power supply to the Fordow facility, temporarily disrupting production. A computer worm called Stuxnet, believed to have originated in the United States, also set Iran’s plans for nuclear weapons back substantially.
Any blow to the Fordow facility would be a huge blow to the regime because, despite severe international pressure and sanctions, it has refused to halt the 20 percent uranium-enrichment process at this site. It takes only weeks to further enrich the stock at the 20 percent level to weapon grade for a nuclear bomb.
Sources in the Islamic regime previously have revealed exclusively to WND the existence of:
- A secret nuclear site in Najaf Abad.
- A list of Iranian scientists working on a nuclear bomb.
- A secret uranium enrichment site in Khondab, where the Russians and North Korean scientists are helping with Iran’s nuclear bomb program.
- The secret bio-weapons site in Marzanabad, where, with the help of Russia, Iran has mastered production of eight microbial agents, arming its missiles with biological warheads.
- Another nuclear site at Bonab, where, with the help of Russians, uranium enrichment is taking place using laser technology.
UPDATE: New details surface on Fordow explosion…North Koreans/officers trapped as well – www.wnd.com/2013/01/new-details-surface-on-iran-nuclear-explosion/.
NEVERTHELESS, while any damage to Iran’s killing machine is a blessed event (westerners owe a lifetime debt of gratitude to Israel’s special forces), the fact of the matter is that PM Netanyahu has been clearly following the Islamist-in-Chief’s lead, regarding the most existential peril to half of world Jewry.
In other words, booms in the night are approved, but all out assault isn’t. The bigger/overall/existential question is: what kind of Jewish leadership leaves the fate of its nation to another power, albeit a super power, but most essentially to one which is led by such a radical, Islamist-leaning POTUS?
We can debate, until the cows come home, how essential a good relationship with Washington is. Well and good. But we dare not blind ourselves to reality on the ground. Simply put:
Hillel says, “If I am not for myself, who will be for me? But if I am only for myself, who am I? If not now, when?” Ethics of the Fathers, 1:14