Jerusalem – Iran has warned that if Israel takes part in an American attack on Iran, Iranian missiles will rain down on 600 targets in Israel.
A senior Iranian defense source in Damascus disclosed that a “map of 600 targets deep inside Israel” has been prepared in case Israel or the United States attacks Iran.
“We have a not inconsiderable quantity of long-range missiles,” said the source. “If Israel participates in an American attack on Iran or aids the Americans, it will sustain a massive attack of missiles on 600 targets deep inside Israel, the location of which is marked on operational maps in the Iranian military command.”
The source also hinted that Iran may fire missiles into Israel if it attacks Syria, but, contrary to the media reports, Iran does not foresee an imminent escalation of the situation between Israel and Syria.
Western sources reported a few months ago that Iran has increased the range of its Shihab-3 missile from 1,500 to 3,000 kilometers, so it appears that the Iranian claim to be able to hit the main strategic targets in Israel appears to be well-founded.
If true, this means not only that they can reach Israel but also that they can be launched from deep inside Iran, which makes them more difficult to detect and intercept. When the range was only 1,500 kilometers, the missiles would have had to be fired from specific sites near the Iraqi and Turkish borders.
The Shihab-3 is believed to have been operational for the past two years, meaning that dozens of the upgraded version have probably been manufactured. The Shihab-3 are believed to have “smart” warheads, which can mislead anti-missile defense systems possessed by advanced countries. Israel’s Arrow anti-ballistic missile is supposed to provide an answer to the Shihab-3.
German Firms Smuggling Nuclear Technology To Iran
In August 1990, a German human rights organization known as the Society for the Protection of Threatened Peoples (SPTP) issued a scathing report accusing 85 German companies of supplying weapons of mass destruction technology to Iran, Iraq, Syria and Libya through third countries. The report also showed that these transactions were done with the knowledge of the German government. Following the Gulf War in 1991, the same SPTP provided documentation that the scud missile technology used by Iraq against Israel had been supplied by German companies.
Now, 16 years later, Germany has suddenly published an assessment that scores of German companies have indeed been helping Iran’s nuclear program.
Fifty German companies are now being investigated by the German government on suspicion of selling dual-use systems and material required for Iran’s nuclear project. Berlin has determined that the shipments were being used to complete Iran’s nuclear energy plant at Bushehr.
“The equipment was ordered by Russia and diverted to Iran,” a German official said.
On Thursday, German state prosecutor Christoph Lange identified one of the companies. Lange said the Berlin-based company Vero was suspected of shipping nuclear material to Moscow via Poland. From there, he said, the material was exported to Iran.
Vero was identified as a supplier to Bushehr since 2000. The company purchased nuclear technology from dozens of companies in Germany for Russian contractors of Bushehr.
These companies have argued that they had merely filled orders from Russian clients. However, Lange said at least a dozen of the German firms knew that Iran was the final destination.
Egypt Braces For Insurgency Strikes
Egypt has been bracing for al-Qaida strikes against civilian targets as the network’s leader fled to the Gaza Strip.
Security sources said Egypt has been interrogating scores of Islamic suspects in an effort to prevent al-Qaida attacks in Cairo. The arrests stemmed from intelligence that al-Qaida was planning mass-casualty strikes in Alexandria and Cairo.
Al-Qaida was said to have been led by Khaled Mahmoud Ahmed. On Sunday, Egyptian security sources said Ahmed fled to the Gaza Strip, which is currently controlled by Hamas.
On Saturday, the Egyptian daily Al Masri Al Yom reported that the al-Qaida network established a Web site to relay news of attacks and recruit fighters. The site, Voice of the Caliphate, also provided material to train volunteers to assemble bombs.
The sources said the Egyptian group was believed linked to the network in Iraq. Egyptians were said to comprise much of the leadership of the al-Qaida network in Iraq.
A leading target of al-Qaida was believed to be Cairo’s subway system, which serves 1.4 million passengers daily. Authorities have received telephoned threats that a major station in northeast Cairo would be bombed.
Egyptian police have increased patrols throughout the subway system and were searching bags of commuters at the Shubra Al Kheima station. Shubra is located in an industrial area dominated by Islamic fundamentalists.
So far, authorities have detained and interrogated scores of suspected al-Qaida insurgents. On Friday, at least 35 people were questioned, including a senior operative identified as Mohammed Abdul Hamid. Abdul Hamid, who allegedly received orders from al-Qaida chief Osama bin Laden, was said to have been accused of planning attacks on tourist sites in Egypt.
Egypt has been raiding suspected al-Qaida strongholds since April. Montasser Al Zayat, an Islamic attorney who defends suspected Islamic insurgents, said 40 people have been charged with seeking to overthrow the regime.
Al-Qaida Uses Katyusha Rockets
Al-Qaida has begun using Soviet-origin rockets in the insurrection in northern Lebanon.
The al-Qaida-aligned Fatah Al Islam has fired at least 30 122-mm Grad rockets against the Lebanese army around the Palestinian refugee camp of Nahr el-Bared. Fatah Al Islam began launching the Katyusha-class rockets, believed to have been obtained from Syria, over the weekend.
On Sunday, Fatah Al Islam launched at least five Katyusha rockets in retaliation for Lebanese army fire that pounded al-Qaida positions in Nahr el-Bared. At least one person was injured.
Lebanese sources said Fatah Al Islam’s use of Katyushas marked a surprise for the Lebanese army. The sources said the 122-mm rockets were believed to have been smuggled to Nahr el-Bared by Syrian-aligned Palestinian allies of Fatah Al Islam. Fatah Al Islam has also used rocket-propelled grenades and machine guns in the insurrection.
The state-owned National News Agency said the Lebanese army entered Nahr el-Bared and surrounded a Fatah Al Islam stronghold on Sunday. Several Islamic insurgents were killed.
The al-Qaida insurrection began on May 20, and so far nearly 100 Lebanese soldiers have been killed. Palestinian sources said about 80 Fatah Al Islam fighters remained in Nahr el-Bared.
David Bedein can be reached at Media@actcom.co.il. His Web site is www.IsraelBehindTheNews.com
©The Bulletin 2007