Iran, Syria and Hezbollah have set up a military room to coordinate activities in the case the US and other countries attack Syria, according to sources quoted on Friday in the Lebanese Daily Star. The sources confirmed an earlier report by the Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhbar that Hezbollah is mobilizing its forces in anticipation of an attack, specifically stating that “tens of thousands” of fighters and reservists have been called up.
“Iran, Syria and Hezbollah don’t have a clear picture about what Americans have planned,” said one diplomat.
Iran and Hezbollah would use all of their power to prop up Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime if they felt that it was in danger of falling; should this not be the case, the diplomat said that Iran and Hezbollah are unlikely to get involved.
Such a threat would include attacks on key Syrian army posts, military airfields and long range missiles, according to diplomatic sources.
Just in case, Iran has begun readying its missiles. “The aim of the move was to demonstrate to the United States that Iran was serious,” the diplomat said. Syria also has a bank of targets in Israel, as well as US bases in Turkey and Jordan.
Pro-Syrian groups are planning retaliatory strikes against targets in Lebanon affiliated with the countries who take part in an attack, according to sources quoted by the Lebanon Now website. The targets would be embassies, consulates and other official buildings. This information led to the US decision to evacuate much of its staff from its embassy in Lebanon and its warning to citizens regarding travel to and from Lebanon and Turkey, the sources said.
On Friday, the US ordered its non-emergency personnel to leave the embassy in Beirut.
The US said it intercepted messages from Iran to militants in Iraq to attack the US embassy and other American interests in Baghdad if Syria is attacked, according to a report on Friday in The Wall Street Journal.
The intercepted message came from Maj.- Gen. Qasem Soleimani, the Revolutionary Guards commander of Iran’s elite Qods Force, and was sent to Shi’ite militia groups in Iraq.
Iran denied the report on Friday.
Meanwhile on Saturday, the ruling Syrian Ba’ath party, along with other parties, held a meeting to discuss a possible attack on the country, according to SANA, Syria’s state news agency. The parties stressed their unity in the event of an attack.
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