IDF fears flotilla activists plan to use chemical weapons
IDF sources said Monday night that new intelligence information obtained in recent days shows that participants of the flotilla planning to break Israel’s sea blockade over the Gaza Strip later this week plan to kill IDF soldiers who board their ships.
According to the information obtained by the IDF, some of the participants have prepared sacks with sulfur, which they plan to pour on the soldiers as they board the vessels.
“This is a chemical weapon, and if poured on a soldier it can paralyze him,” an IDF source told The Jerusalem Post Monday night. “If the sulfur is then lit on fire, the soldier will light up like a torch.”
The information was obtained from closed meetings held by participants on the ships during which some voiced their intention to “murder Israeli soldiers,” according to the IDF.
Also, despite earlier predictions that members of the Turkish organization IHH Humanitarian Relief Foundation would not participate in the flotilla, it now appears that some members will sail with the ships alongside other radical Islamic activists.
We've already looked at the fact that there is no "humanitarian crisis" in Gaza, (see here), and we know that supplies can easily be sent into Gaza in an organized, legal manner. A "flotilla" is completely unnecessary if that is the true intent. So obviously this flotilla has nothing to do with any kind of "humanitarian relief", let there be no mistake about that.
IDF fears flotilla activists will try to kill soldiers
It has recently been estimated that only eight ships will take part in the sail, instead of 15. Some 500 activists are expected to board the vessels, half the original estimated number. They will include several prominent Hamas members such as Amin Abu Rashad, who heads a charity in Holland and Mohammed Ahmed Hanoun.
She added there were other ways to transfer supplies to Gaza, stating that the mechanism created by Egypt and Israel was sufficient for such efforts.
Israel fears Gaza flotilla activists may try to kill IDF soldiers
The senior officials also said that Israel had been notified that several extremists among the Gaza flotilla participants had recently claimed that they intend on “shedding the blood of IDF soldiers.”
Moreover, despite earlier reports, it seems that activists from the Turkish organization IHH, which was involved in the deadly IDF raid on the Mavi Marmara in last year’s Gaza flotilla, will be joining several of the ships sailing for Gaza as part of the flotilla.
While this is close to happening (later this week), we also see these stories developing:
Palestinians reveal plan to drum up support ahead of statehood bid
Palestinian delegations will make the rounds of nearly a dozen countries to try to drum up more support for their bid to have the United Nations recognize a Palestinian state, senior officials said Monday.
Palestinian officials will visit Canada, Australia, New Zealand and several other countries that have not yet endorsed the Palestinian plan for recognition, said Hana Amireh, a member of the Palestine Liberation Organization's decision-making Executive Committee.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' foreign minister said all Palestinian ambassadors would meet in Madrid in early July to discuss how to approach all-important European Union member states, whose support would be crucial to giving the plan diplomatic heft.
And of course, any stories regarding tension increasing in the Middle East wouldn't be complete without Iran in the picture
Iran reveals underground ballistic missile silos
Iran unveiled underground ballistic missile silos for the first time on Monday in a warning to the world of its ability to protect its missiles and secretly store them in hidden locations throughout the country.
State TV broadcast footage of several military officers touring an underground silo that was holding a Shahab 3 ballistic missile. The missile has a range of 2,000 kilometers, putting Israel within its reach, but is powered by liquid fuel, which means that it requires more considerable preparation immediately before launch than a solid rocket.
The unveiling of underground missile silos was confirmation of Israeli and American warnings in recent years that Iran was dispersing its missiles in silos, likely scattered throughout the country.
“The silos look fairly sophisticated and by unveiling them, the Iranians are trying to show the world that their missiles are protected even if the country is attacked,” Inbar said. He added that other countries with missile silos used them strictly for missiles equipped with nuclear warheads and not for conventional ballistic missiles.
Iran unveils underground silos with missiles capable of reaching Israel
Iran on Monday unveiled underground silos that can carry missiles capable of hitting Israel and U.S. bases in the Gulf as it kicked off 10 days of war games, the country's latest show of military force amid a standoff with the West over its disputed nuclear program.
State TV broadcast footage of deep underground silos, claiming that medium- and long-range missiles stored in them are ready to launch in case of an attack on Iran. The silos are widely viewed as a strategic asset for Iran in the event of a U.S. or Israeli attack on its nuclear facilities.
And more trouble from Israel's north (as the anti-Israeli coalition grows stronger by the day):
Lebanon has a radical new government. It gives Assad his second front
After five months of political stagnation, 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 awarded an unprecedented number of portfolios – 18, including defense interior – to Hizballah loyalists and pro-Syrian politicians.
The breakthrough was directly spawned by the Syrian uprising: The Shiite Hizballah capitalized on neighboring unrest to grab its largest slice of government ever.
Lebanon's first pro-Syrian defense minister can bend the Lebanese army to the will of Damascus and the pro-Iranian HizballIah.
The pro-Iranian and pro-Syrian government installed now in Beirut is a major shot in the arm for the radical Iranian-Syrian-Hizballah alliance
It is all coming together exactly as we would predict - the coalitions, the military build-up, the war preparations, the anti-Israeli rhetoric and a weakened U.S. who most likely will abandon Israel in their time of need. We're watching the preparations for the final battles consolidating before our very eyes.