JD: Ken what’s going on as it relates to Syria? Very high ranking political leader made the statement this week they are ready to attack Israel unless Israel withdraws from the Golan Heights meanwhile the United States wants to endorse the fact Israel has sovereignty over the Golan Heights. What’s happening?
KT: Frankly a bit of a surprise because the Syrians have generally refrained from this kind outrageous rhetoric forever. They just don’t tend to engage in it because they know the Israeli’s have a very long arm and are capable of reaching deep into Syria with airstrikes to punish them or punish people who are threatening Israel. So it was very surprising to see Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad submit an official warning to the head of the United Nations Truce Supervisory Organization warning that if the US recognized Israel sovereignty or to start with Israel asserted its sovereignty over the Golan that Syria would respond militarily against Israel. I think this is frankly a dangerous ploy on the part of the Syrians.
I believe the Israeli’s have clearly got the upper hand militarily. They’ve been installed on the Golan ever since the 73 war. They need the Golan Heights strategically because they saw in 73 exactly what happens when they don’t have the Golan Heights, when an enemy force is on the Golan above Israel looking down onto the Galilee very very dangerous for them. So I don’t see the Israeli’s giving up the Golan and the US has in fact suggested that they would support Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights.
JD: Ken Timmerman with the details behind the Syrian threat to attack Israel unless the Jewish State withdraws from the Golan Heights.