Recent weeks have seen increased fears over the potential use of chemical or biological weapons by the Syrian regime. During the last days of November, Israeli military officers phoned the Pentagon to provide what was considered troubling and urgent information, that had been gathered from satellite photos, The New York Times reported on Tuesday.
In the photos, reportedly, Syrian soldiers could be seen mixing chemical materials at two facilities. Apparently, it was the deadly nerve gas sarin, and filling dozens of bombs, that could be loaded on airplanes.
The newspaper said that after the disclosure of this information to American officials, President Obama publicly warned against the use of chemical weapons. At the same time, Russia and other countries, including Iraq, Turkey and possibly Jordan, sent personal messages to Assad and his military commanders, asking them to stop mixing chemical substances and preparing bombs.
Despite that, the fear of Assad using these weapons still exists, according to the newspaper, because the Syrian president had already managed to produce chemical weapons readied for use whenever needed.
Meanwhile, the head of a new unified military command of the Syrian opposition, Brigadier Selim Idris, said that the Free Syrian Army had created special units to monitor the site where chemical weapons are stored, according to media reports Monday.
"The special units provide us with intelligence information on any movement at those sites and as soon as the regime falls, we have units tasked with securing the depots," Brigadier Selim Idris said.
In related news, following confirmation by the Secretary General of NATO that the Syrian regime had fired Scud missiles, online activists uploaded footage showing Assad's forces launching the ballistic weapons.
One video, posted on YouTube, purports to show the Scud missiles launched from Douma, a city 10km to the north of the capital Damascus. The authenticity of the video has not been confirmed by a neutral source.
In new development, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon spokesman, Martin Nesirky said that the secretary-general is disappointed that Assad's speech does not contribute to a solution that could end the terrible suffering of the Syrian people.
Despite that, SANA news said that the Syrian government has begun preparations for the implementation of the road map proposed by Assad.
For his part, the regime Information Minister Omran Zuabi said that the government had invited all the opposition forces, which are advocating for the country’s sovereignty and are against foreign interference into its home affairs, to take part in the national dialogue.
Zuabi also said that Assad's road map rejects violence and terrorism and any foreign interference in the country and outlines a future for the country through a comprehensive political process.
No one should be surprised that the Syrian regime is intending to use chemical weapons or have already used them. However, what attracts attention in this report is that the mixing of materials occurred in two unknown locations. The questions is: Is Israel the only country watching the movements of the chemical arsenal to inform America?
The report stated that, some countries warned Assad over chemical weapons. For your information, all the above mentioned countries have no relation with the Syrian regime. Or they might be in contact with the regime far from the media. It is really puzzling!
This reminds me of Colin Powell's report, in which he said, Saddam Hussein's regime moved the weapons of mass destruction to a certain place. His report was the main reason for the invasion of Iraq. However, after the occupation of Iraq, it has been proven that Iraq was honest when it said it did not have any weapons of mass destruction.
On the other hand, regarding the regime's movement to apply the peace plan mentioned in Assad's speech, it sounds funny and ridiculous, as this indicates that Assad and his regime had lost their minds. My question is, who is the opposition that has been invited? On what basis will the regime meet with the Syrian opposition? Bearing in mind that I previously mentioned in several reports, on Allvoices that the opposition inside Syria is not a true opposition, but they are loyalists and government employees. Their job is to pretend being opponents to the Syrian regime.
Assad shouldn't have forgotten that the Free Syrian Army was just a few miles from where he was speaking.
At the end, Assad mobbed by his supporters reminded me of Moammar Gadhafi in his final appearances in Tripoli.