DEBKAfile Special Report October 28, 2011
In the last 48 hours, the Syrian engineering corps has laid minefields along the Jordanian, Turkish borders to cut down on the influx of weapons and armed manpower supporting the anti-Assad opposition and the outflow of army deserters. debkafile's military sources add: By this action, Syria also aims to seal itself off against foreign military intervention. Since Muammar Qaddafi's death, Bashar Assad fears he is facing Arab military incursions backed by NATO.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report October 28, 2011
Iran and Hizballah declare NATO would never attack Syria, yet they are making military preparations for this very eventuality. Syria's only option to stem arms smuggling to the opposition is to seize large parts of Lebanon and Jordan, thus provoking a NATO assault.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 16, 2011
On the fifth anniversary of Israel's second Lebanon war this week, as former IDF generals and military experts hailed its outcome as the winning deterrent keeping the Shiite terrorist Hizballah at bay every since, Hassan Nasrallah quietly completed the organization's takeover of Lebanon's security and intelligence agencies and took delivery of advanced ballistic missiles from Syria. Hizballah is therefore going from strength to strength in Lebanon – contrary to the view current in top Israeli circles.
DEBKAfile Special Report June 30, 2011
The Lebanese capital was only the first stop for a delegation of the UN-backed Special Tribal for Lebanon investigating the 2005 assassination of former Lebanese prime minister Rafiq Hariri. Thursday, June 30, the group arrived in Beirut and presented four arrest warrants against top Hizballah officers. Its next destination may eventually be Damascus for the submission of a second batch of warrants against Syrian officials suspected of controlling the Hizballah hit-team in the commission of the murder.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report June 17, 2011
Lebanon has a new government headed by Najib Mikati, ally of Syrian President Bashar Assad and Hizballah. Formed suddenly on June 13, the 30-minister lineup has earmarked an unprecedented 18 portfolios – including defense and interior – to Hizballah loyalists and pro-Syrian politicians. While fighting the uprising against his rule, Bashar Assad has recaptured Beirut. The appointment of friendly Fayez Ghosn as defense minister places the army at the service of Damascus and portends trouble on the Lebanese-Israeli border.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 31, 2011
Damascus is humming in anticipation of a speech in the coming hours by Syrian President Bashar Assad declaring victory over the 10-week uprising against his regime, debkafile reports. Two pockets of resistance still hold out around Homs, but the protest ringleaders fled briefly to the Lebanese port of Tripoli and will soon be on their way to a West European safe haven. It is not clear how many of the 10,000 protesters arrested will benefit from the amnesty announced Tuesday.
DEBKAfile Special Report May 15, 2011
Israeli forces on high alert for Nakba Day, Sunday, May 15, failed to seal three national borders on the Golan, Lebanon and the Gaza Strip against large-scale incursions. Dozens of Syrians and Hizballah invaders were able to overrun the Israeli Golan village of Majd al Shams and hoist Syrian and Palestinian flags in the main square; Hizballah-sponsored Palestinian demonstrators breached the Lebanese-Israeli border and damaged IDF installations; and hundreds battered the Erez crossing from the Gaza Strip.
DEBKAfile Special Report May 14, 2011
Aviv Morag, 29, from Caesaria was killed shortly before his marriage and 17 people were injured - two in serious condition - after being run down by an Israeli Arab, 22, from Kafr Qassem in Tel Aviv, Sunday, May 15. The killer's truck swerved left and right along 2 kilometers of busy road in South Tel Aviv. After knocking over a traffic light, the driver jumped out and shouting Allah Akhbar! used the pieces to beat passers-by who eventually overpowered him.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 20, 2011
President Bashar Assad, while abrogating Syria's 48-year old emergency laws Tuesday, April 19, immediately replaced them with new draconian measures banning any public protest against his regime and permitting midnight arrests. His bloody showdown with widening circles of protesters is in its final act, debkafile's Middle East sources report. It now threatens to explode into a sectarian war. Assad has asked neighboring Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon and Iraq to seal their borders with Syria against arms smuggling and a refugee exodus.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 18, 2011
By stepping into Bahrain, the Saudis took the calculated risk of accelerating Sunni-Shiite discord across the region. Because of the challenge to its religious supremacy from Iraq, Tehran is re-thinking the wisdom of its decision to hijack the Arab uprisings.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 7, 2011
The UN Special Lebanon Tribunal was asked to define crimes of terrorism, conspiracy and premeditated murder at its first hearing in the Netherlands Monday, Feb. 7. Its responses will for the first time define terror as an international crime. debkafile's report that within days, pretrial Judge Daniel Fransen is to publish indictments in the 2005 assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minster Rafiq Hariri. The judges have therefore jumped the gun on Hizballah. A showdown looms large in Lebanon too.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 4, 2011
Arab rulers have come up with three theories to account for Barack Obama's inexplicable policy of removing one friendly Middle East leader, Mubarak and abandoning another, Saad Hariri. Above all, they are scared of joining hands with Washington for any joint endeavor and petrified with fear of the Muslim Brotherhood's rise to power. To pacify their disaffected peoples, they are pledging reforms and promising benefits.
DEBKAfile Special Report January 25, 2011
The two days Iran's new foreign minister Ali Salehi spent in Damascus from Saturday night, Jan. 22, were enough to keep Syrian president Bashar Assad in place for Tehran's final steps in its grab for Lebanon: installing Najib Mikati at the head of a puppet government, debkafile reports.
DEBKAfile Special Report January 20, 2011
Lebanon swerved closer to a factional conflagration Thursday night, Jan. 20, when Saad Hariri, whose coalition Hizballah toppled eight days ago, announced he would form a new government and so defy the efforts to oust him. Hassan Nasrallah's supporters warned he was leading Lebanon to disaster. Earlier, Lebanese army units stepped up security for Hariri and government institutions and took up positions at Beirut's intersections ready to ward off any Hizballah takeover attempt.
DEBKAfile Special Report January 15, 2011
Lebanon's ex-prime minister Saad Hariri arrived home in the middle of a hectic race by Hizballah's leader Hassan Nasrallah to install an alternative pro-Iranian-Syrian government in order to fend off indictments against his top officials for the murder of Saad Hariri's father six years ago. Hizballah believes a bloodless coup through parliament will enable him to invalidate the Special Lebanese Tribunal, whose prosecutor is expected to hand his findings to the pre-trial judge momentarily.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report January 14, 2011
Despite the ill-fated American involvement in Lebanon of former years, the Obama administration believes he can beat Tehran at its own game by backing the pro-Western coalition headed by Saad Hariri and bringing his father's assassins, Hizballah, to justice. Tehran is banking on Hizballah's prowess as the strongest military force in Lebanon.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report January 13, 2011
President Barack Obama is bent on bringing Hizballah officials to justice for their role in the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri in Beirut five years ago – even after they toppled the Lebanese government. If a transitional government in Beirut declares the international tribunal – STL – invalid, Washington intends to obtain its authorization for trying Hizballah suspects in abstentia, debkafile reports. Prime Minister Hariri flew Thursday from Paris to Ankara.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report January 12, 2011
Backed from Tehran, Hizballah and its Christian ally Michel Aoun abruptly quit the Lebanese unity government Wednesday, Jan. 12, to pave the way for their seizure of power in Beirut. They struck as the Special Tribunal for Lebanon's prosecutor prepared to hand over "within hours or days" indictments naming Hizballah officials in the Hariri assassination. The US and France are bolstering their naval units ready for a showdown over Beirut. Israel is on standby.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report January 5, 2011
The UN has turned down Lebanon's demand to intervene in delineating its sea border following Israel's Leviathan gas strike in the Mediterranean, billed as the world's biggest in a decade. Cyprus responded by announcing the Texas-based US firm Noble Energy - partners with Israel's Delek Energy group in Leviathan – had been licensed to explore a 1,250 square-mile island block bordering on Israeli waters.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report December 28, 2010
The 12 Al Qaeda terrorists, whose projected arrival has put European security authorities on high New Year alert, set out from Ain Hilweh, Lebanon, and belong to three al Qaeda-linked Palestinian groups, the Syrian Jund al-Sham, the Lebanese Army of Islam (which also operates in the Gaza Strip) and Fatah al-Islam, debkafile's counter-terror sources disclose. Its members are all richly experienced in urban terror in Middle East arenas. Lebanon is Al Qaeda's latest departure point for terrorists.