Wikileaks reveals varying Israeli views towards Assad

Yadlin: Israel doesn't trust Syria's peace rhetoric; Olmert: Peace with Syria not top priority; Ashkenazi: Assad smiles to West, while arming Hezbollah.

assad speech 311 (photo credit: REUTERS)
assad speech 311
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Various US diplomatic cables released by Wikileaks on Wednesday portray differing views of Syrian President Bashar Assad from the perspective of various Israeli political and military leaders in meetings with prominent US figures.
Former director of Military Intelligence Amos
Specter also mentioned that Assad said he would cooperate with the implementation of UN Security Council resolution 1701, the ceasefire between Israel and Lebanon following the summer 2006 war between the two.
Olmert signaled that he expected credible indication of seriousness from Assad before considering negotiations with the country, the cable says.
Former IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi in 2009 said that Assad is "smiliing to the West while supporting Hezbollah and Hamas" and must be forced to pursue a breakthrough with the West or ally with Iran.
According to the cable from a meeting between Ashkenazi and a US Congressional Delegation on November 15, Ashkenazi said Assad is "enjoying the best of both worlds."
Not only is Syria shipping arms to Hezbollah from Iran, but the country is also directly supplying the Lebanese terror group from its depots, Ashkenazi told the US officials.
Ashkenazi had said that Syria is vulnerable to US pressure, "since it has a minority regime with a bad economy and its oil is running out."

Syria's threat to Israel via Hezbollah and Hamas would be significantly minimized if it can be removed from the Iranian Axis, Ashkenazi said.
However, Ashkenazi had admitted in the meeting that Israel's northern border in the Golan is the quietest border "since the Syrians are very careful not to provoke Israel directly."


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