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Highly placed U.S.-based sources have provided EIR with details of Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's plans for a new Mideast war, plans that were set in motion within days of his taking office earlier this year, and which are now set to be activated. According to the sources, shortly after he was elected, Sharon met with a group of trusted political and military allies, and spelled out, in several confidential memos, a war plan targetting the Palestinian Authority, the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, and other Arab neighbors.
Two key factors were identified by the sources:
1. Sharon's ability to use the Hamas group as a tool for destabilizing Jordan, ultimately overthrowing King Abdullah II and establishing Jordan as a "Palestinian homeland" under Hamas control. To this end, Sharon, who was instrumental in launching the Hamas movement, has dispatched his son as an emissary to the Islamist group. Key Hamas personnel have already been infiltrated into Jordan, in preparation for Sharon's provocation of war in the days or weeks ahead, the sources said.
In many ways, the Sharon-backed Hamas targetting of Jordan is a replay of 1970's "Black September" destabilization which involved Abu Nidal, long suspected of being an asset of British and Israeli intelligence.
In the 1970s, Hamas was built up by Israeli occupying forces as a "countergang" to the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) of Yasser Arafat. Individuals who later emerged as Hamas leaders were granted licenses by Israeli authorities to set up food kitchens, clinics, schools, and day-care centers, to create a governing structure alternative to Arafat's Fatah.
2. Sharon's ability to manipulate the Bush Administration into giving de facto support to the war drive. Sharon assumes that President Bush can be manipulated into supporting Israeli war provocations because Bush seeks to justify a defense buildup, which would require a perceived war danger in order to win Congressional support. Despite Sharon's public rebuke by President Bush during their June White House summit, and subsequent statements by Secretary of State Colin Powell endorsing the entirety of the Mitchell Commission proposal for confidence-building measures, leading to a final peace agreement with the Palestinian Authority, Sharon remains confident that he can ultimately achieve American support for his war manuevers.
Indeed, on July 6, testifying before Congress, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld acknowledged that a war crisis would give the Administration leeway to crank up defense spending, from the current 3% of GDP, to 8-10%.
Sharon also assessed that Colin Powell and others who might not favor a war provocation, could be outmaneuvered by Israel and by U.S. "Israel Lobbyists," whom President Bush does not wish to cross. One senior aide to Defense Secretary Rumsfeld recently complained about a takeover of the Pentagon bureaucracy by Sharon's Likud party.
Hit Teams Dispatched According to the sources, Sharon has dispatched at least two Israeli hit teams to Europe, with instructions to assassinate prominent Arabs aligned with Arafat. Hamas teams are also reportedly activated—with clandestine Israeli backing—to target American assets in Europe and the Middle East. An "Islamist" terrorist attack against an American target, Sharon believes, would assure U.S. blessings for whatever "retaliation" Israel might take against Iraq, Iran, or Syria.
Sharon's so-called "moderation" after the June 1 Tel Aviv discotheque bombing was, say the sources, geared to win domestic support for a later war drive. Israeli right-wingers are fully mobilized to assure that Sharon will strike hard, the next time a suicide bomb attack occurs inside Israel. And the center-left has been lulled into believing that the "new" Sharon is more moderate, and prepared to seek a peaceful solution.
Further, the sources say, Sharon is conducting a vicious psychological operation inside Israel, to secure popular support for a war by staging continuous terror scares. One Israeli businessman confirmed that almost nightly, Israeli police enter restaurants, hotels, shops, etc., ordering patrons to evacuate due to "bomb threats." The businessman, a former Mossad official, was told by Israeli authorities that the scares are in almost all cases hoaxes, perpetrated to traumatize the public into accepting any anti-Arab military actions.
In early July, Sharon temporarily shut down the Tel Aviv water system, in another psy-war operation, claiming that there was evidence that Palestinian terrorists might have poisoned the supply. He has appointed Ury Saguy, former head of military intelligence, as the director of the Mekorot National Water Company.
Sharon has, according to the U.S. sources, gotten the blessings of high-level factions in Britain for a conventional war, which would offer London an opportunity to extend its sphere of influence in the Persian Gulf. Sharon will soon seek a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, in an effort to win some degree of Moscow support for the war moves. Sharon has reportedly drafted a secret memo, arguing that the expulsion of large numbers of Arab Israelis, as well as Palestinians, will allow Israel to fully absorb the more than 1 million Russian Jews who have emigrated to Israel, but who live in poverty.
The LaRouche Factor One U.S. source reported that Sharon's ability to deploy Jewish terrorists in a provocation against Jerusalem's Temple Mount/Haram Al Sharif Islamic holy sites was undermined by last December's release of EIR's Special Report, "Who Is Sparking a Religious War in The Middle East?" which exposed Sharon's hand, and the British monarchy's, in the plan to blow up the Mideast. Now, the sources add, Sharon is preparing to use a terrorist attack against Israeli civilians, likely to come from Hamas terrorists under de facto Sharon control—to justify war.
Sources noted that high-level Israeli military and intelligence officials share Lyndon LaRouche's assessment that Israel cannot win a protracted irregular war. For a majority of Israeli military professionals, this means that Israel must accept a meaningful peace agreement with the Palestinian Authority. But for Sharon and his rabid allies, it means that Israel must provoke a general war, under cover of which Israel could occupy the territories currently under the PA's control, and either eliminate or exile the PA leadership from the Gaza Strip and the West Bank.
Sharon would use any pretext to justify a military strike against Iraq, probably including a ground invasion of Iraq through Jordan, which would topple King Abdullah II, and pave the way for a Hamas government in Jordan. Israel has already attacked radar installations in Syria.
By launching such a regional war "in reaction" to a terrorist attack, particularly in the context of simultaneous terrorist actions against American targets, Sharon would hope to assure that Israel would win the solid support of the United States and Western Europe.
Ultimately, the sources concluded, Sharon would move to "transfer" large portions of the Arab population of Israel—along with a majority of West Bank and Gaza Palestinians—to the east bank of the Jordan River, under a Sharon-sponsored Hamas regime, thus achieving the "final solution" to the "Palestinian problem." Following the Tel Aviv disco bombing, Sharon had tried, unsuccessfully, to win Cabinet support for a mass expulsion of the Palestinians and Israeli Arabs.
Ha'aretz, Jane's Confirm EIR Reports This story was posted to EIR's website, www.larouchepub.com, on July 10. After that, other sources picked it up. On July 11, the Israeli daily Ha'aretz published a commentary by Gideon Samet, confirming the Sharon plan. "Don't rely on Prime Minister Ariel Sharon not to initiate a widespread assault, or an active defense-oriented campaign or a surgical operation—you name it," he wrote.
CBS News reported, on July 12, that Jane's Information Group in London had issued a report that Israel was planning a "massive invasion of Palestinian territories ... to destroy Palestinian armed forces and the Palestinian Authority, forcing Chairman Yasser Arafat back into exile, as he was for 12 years after the 1982 Israeli invasion of Lebanon." CBS described the plan as calling for "air strikes by F-15 and F-16 fighter-bombers, a heavy artillery bombardment, and then an attack by combined forces of 30,000 men, including paratroopers, tank brigades and infantry.... The report says the Israeli invasion plan would be launched after another suicide bomb attack which causes a large number of deaths, like the one at a Tel Aviv disco last month."
Neither Ha'aretz, nor CBS, nor Jane's mentioned the Sharon links to Hamas, an indispensable feature of the war plan revealed by EIR's sources.
Copyright © Eexecutive Intelligence Review 2002. Reprinted for fair use only.
CRG's Global Outlook, premiere issue on "Stop the War" provides detailed documentation on the war and the "Post- September 11 Crisis."
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