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Israeli hospitals are scheduling regular training sessions so they can respond quickly to a chemical-weapons attack, according to a religious group working in Israel.
Jewish Voice Ministries International President Rabbi Jonathan Bernis said that Israel’s Home Office considers the preparedness important because of the proximity to Syria, which is torn by civil war and possesses stockpiles of chemical weaponry.
“The Home Front Command stressed the importance of training for a massive attack because of the unprecedented nature such an attack would pose. No other nation in recent history has had to respond to such a horror,” Bernis said.
Jewish Voice Ministries International spokesman Rabbi Jack Zimmerman echoed Bernis concerns, saying the Israel Defense Forces is conducting the training exercises because of the threat from an increasingly unstable Syria.
“When you’re next door to Syria, and both sides fighting for control of Syria are hostile to Israel, it’s a prudent step to prepare,” Zimmerman said.
“It’s known that [Syrian President Bashar] al-Assad has chemical weapons and the rebels have them too,” Zimmerman said. “Both have made threats to use them against Israel.”
Zimmerman said he couldn’t address the level of the threat posed by Hezbollah, but Hezbollah has been making threats to Israel for several years.
“Hezbollah has threatened the use of chemical weapons in general since the September 2006 war. While they have yet to act on the threats, we do know that Hezbollah is fighting Israel as a proxy of Iran,” Zimmerman said.
Center for Security Policy Senior Fellow Clare Lopez said the threat to Israeli’s security is real.
“Of course, gathering concern about Bashar al-Assad’s formidable chemical weapons agent stockpile lends urgency to Israeli preparations for all contingencies,” Lopez said.
“Some think that while Assad may well use chemical weapons against his own people in a last-ditch bid to hang onto power, it may be equally as likely that he or his Hezbollah allies could unleash these weapons against Israel, in a last spasm of spite or in an effort to drag the Israelis into the Syrian morass,” Lopez said.
Tel Aviv-based Institute for National Security Studies research fellow Benedetta Berti said that while she doesn’t know the severity of the threat of a chemical attack, the drills are a reasonable precaution.
“Israel does take this threat very seriously and has clearly told the Syrian regime such an attack would cross a red line and lead to Israel’s involvement,” Berti said.
“I would also say Israel is very advanced in emergency preparedness,” Berti said.
Israel’s preparations are evidenced by the regular emergency drills and procedures. Zimmerman said the chemical warfare drills are a regular feature at Israeli hospitals.
“They have the drills 25 times each year, which works out to being about twice a month,” Zimmerman said. “The IDF is training the hospitals to deal with major casualties.”
American Enterprise Institute Middle East and terrorism analyst Michael Rubin said the readiness drills are a way of life for Israelis.
“The Israelis have to be prepared to receive casualties from all their opponents’ weaponry,” Rubin said.
It’s simply being prudent, Rubin said.
“They are not American: They are not going to put their head in the sand and pretend their enemies don’t have murderous intent,” Rubin said.
Lopez agreed that Israel has it right when it comes to readiness.
“It represents a level of civil preparedness that is typical for Israel – and is so very unknown to us here in the U.S.,” Lopez said.
“In other words, Israel has existed and survived and thrived since its modern-day inception in 1948 always under attack, always at risk from genocidal Muslim neighbors who want to wipe it out,” Lopez said.
“As a people and as a society, Israelis have adapted to that, accepting that every member must be ready for attack at any time,” Lopez said.
There also is the possibility of biological warfare. WND reported just days ago that Iranian scientists, working under orders from the radicals running the Islamic regime, have genetically altered microbial agents in a nightmarish scheme to bring the West to its knees.
A report from a Revolutionary Guards intelligence unit source said scientists there now have eight extremely dangerous microbial agents that, if unleashed, could kill millions of people.
As reported exclusively by WND Dec. 16, the source revealed the existence of a plant in Marzanabad, Iran, where 12 Russian and 28 Iranian scientists are working on microbial agents for bombs. At that time, the source disclosed that Iran was working on 18 agents, with four completed. He has now provided information that with work at two other plants, Iran has created a total of eight microbial agents, with research on insects to be used as the vector to infect its enemies.
The eight agents are reported to be anthrax, encephalitis (the blueprint of this virus, Venezuelan Equine Encephalitis, was provided by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez in an agreement two years ago with the Islamic regime), yellow grain (developed with the help of North Korea), SARS, Ebola, cholera, smallpox and plague.
The Revolutionary Guards source added that the Islamic regime has already armed 37 of its ballistic missiles with microbial agents, which upon launch would spray targeted areas as opposed to an explosion. It has also armed cluster bombs with such agents, which could be dropped from fighter jets spraying an intended area.
What makes it worse, the source said, is that Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad and other terrorist proxies of the regime have now been armed with microbial weapons. As reported by the Washington Times in August, chemical and microbial weapons have been transferred to Iran’s proxies in the region.