Israeli intelligence chief warns: Syria is expanding its long-range missile manufacture and anti-tank rocket deployment on Golan

debkafile‘s military sources quote two statements by Israeli generals Sunday, Dec. 10 to the Israeli cabinet: OC Northern Command Maj.-Gen Gadi Eisenkott denounced as irresponsible talk of a war with Syria and Hizballah in the summer of 2007.
Brig. Gen Yossi Baidatz, military intelligence chief of research, reported that Syria had increased its production of long-range missiles (picture)and was building up its anti-tank rocket units on the Golan border with Israel.
This information is not proof in itself of a Syrian intent to go to war. Gen. Eisenkott says he sees no tangible war preparations on the Golan and Hermon despite the aggressive rhetoric coming out of Damascus, whereas it is Brig Baidatz’s job to count the missiles coming off Syrian production lines in the northern city of Homs. The volume in Nov. 2006 was 20% greater than the output of Nov. 2005.
The key question neither Israeli officer answers is this: How many missiles are destined for Syrian use and how many for the strategic reserve Iran is stocking in Syria. According to debkafile‘s military sources, Syria’s missile output is not determined by the heads of its military industry, but by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards sitting on the industry’s executive boards and incoming investment funds regulated by Tehran.
All the departments of Syrian’s military industry merged last year with Iran’s manufacturing complex and are run as a single corporation. Therefore, it may be said that it is very much up to Tehran to determine if and when Bashar Asad goes on the offensive on the Golan front.
Asad is not obliged to dance to Tehran’s tune. He can decide he no longer wishes to coordinate his military and diplomatic strategies with Tehran. This would mean the breakup of the close Damascus-Tehran alliance. For the moment, there is no sign of any breach. Quite the reverse; intelligence data indicate a tightening of the partnership on all shared fronts.
This again is no proof that the widely-predicted summer 2007 war is inevitable. It does mean that Tehran means to hold on to Syria, Hizballah and Hamas as proxy whips against the Americans in Iraq and Israel until such time as its clerical rulers find a war move expedient.

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