Remember Saddam’s Nukes?

Remember Saddam’s Nukes?
Vol: 113 Issue: 28 Monday, February 28, 2011

In September 2007 Israeli Air Force bombers attacked and destroyed what was believed to be a Syrian nuclear reactor of North Korean design.  

Andrew Semmel, a senior US State Department official, said at the time that Syria might have obtained nuclear equipment from “secret suppliers”, and added that there were a “number of foreign technicians” in the country.

Damascus is not thought to have made serious efforts in the past to develop nuclear weapons, and those experts said it was unlikely that the Syrians could afford such a program or had the technical expertise to sustain it.

Asked if they could be North Korean, he replied: “There are North Korean people there. There’s no question about that.”

The 2007 target was identified as a northern Syrian facility that purported to be an agricultural research centre on the Euphrates River.  Israel had been monitoring it for some time, saying publicly that it was being used to extract uranium from phosphates.

It now seems far more likely that Syria already had several kilograms of plutonium, and it was involved in building a bomb factory.   It takes about four kilograms of fissionable to make one bomb.

Processing the plutonium and assembling the bomb require utmost caution, because plutonium is one of the most toxic and radioactive materials. One microgram can kill one person, and a gram is capable of killing a million people.

Handling it requires special lathes, but because of its lethal nature nobody is allowed to come into direct contact with plutonium or with the lathes. That is why there is a need to build labs containing dozens of glove boxes, which isolate and separate the worker from the material and the equipment.

What reinforces suspicions that the structure attacked in Syria was in fact a bomb assembly plant is the fact that the satellite photos taken after the bombing clearly show that the Syrians made an effort to bury the entire site under piles of earth. 

The Syrians buried it because of the lethal nature of whatever was in the structure and they refused to let the IAEA inspect the site and take samples for more than a year while they cleaned it up.

The German news magazine, Der Speigel, conducted an investigation of the 2007 airstrike in 2009:  

In September 2007, Israeli fighter jets destroyed a mysterious complex in the Syrian desert. The incident could have led to war, but it was hushed up by all sides. Was it a nuclear plant and who gave the orders for the strike?

The mighty Euphrates river is the subject of the prophecies in the Bible’s Book of Revelation, where it is written that the river will be the scene of the battle of Armageddon:

The sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river Euphrates, and its water was dried up to prepare the way for the kings from the East.

I thought it an interesting choice of reference for a secular German news magazine.


The Israeli strike on Syria’s nuclear reactor was more than three years ago.  Nothing much has been said about it since. 

Syrian nuke program

It isn’t necessarily  because Syria has been so quiet.  It’s more a case of everybody else in the neighborhood being so loud.

And so while the rest of the world has been distracted by Iran and Ahmadinejad and by North Korea’s crazy little dictator Kim Jong-il’s existing nuclear stockpile, nobody seemed to be paying that much attention to Syria.

Probably should have been.   

It turns out that the Syrians had four other nuclear facilities besides the one at al-Kibar, according to the US Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS).

“The report, which was published alongside a report by the German daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung, explains that Syria’s nuclear program was far more advanced than previously believed and included, in addition to the reactor destroyed at al-Kibar, a uranium conversion facility and three storage sites.

The conversion facility at Marj as-Sultan, according to the report, was apparently intended for processing uranium yellowcake into uranium tetrafluoride (UF4) for the al-Kibar reactor.

The facility’s current use is unknown, but the ISIS suspects that after the latter was bombed Syria attempted to disguise its operations. The institute cites commercial satellite images as proof of this.”

The city of Damascus remains the oldest, continuously inhabited city on the face of the earth. In all its long history, it has never been totally destroyed.

“The burden of Damascus. Behold, Damascus is taken away from being a city, and it shall be a ruinous heap. . . And in that day it shall come to pass, that the glory of Jacob shall be made thin, and the fatness of his flesh shall wax lean.” (Isaiah 17:1,4)

Isaiah’s depiction of Damascus troubling Israel in the last days comes at a time when the ‘glory of Jacob (Israel) is made thin’ — if ‘Israel’s glory’ were any thinner, it would be transparent.   

Syria has long-range missiles armed with both chemical and biological warheads and aimed straight at Israel.  From this ISIS report, it appears at least possible that Assad either has, or is developing, nuclear warheads for use against Israel as well.

“And behold at eveningtide trouble; and before the morning he [Damascus] is not. This is the portion of them that spoil us, and the lot of them that rob us.” (Isaiah 17:14)

Israel is believed to have more than two hundred nuclear weapons that could fulfill Isaiah’s prophecy in about sixty seconds. 

Finally, the ISIS images show three facilities that ISIS says were probably ‘used for storage’ at Masyaf, Iskandariyah, and Marj as Sultan.

Three sites?   Just for storage?  Storage for what?  How much nuclear material could Syria have amassed without detection?

Some, maybe.  But it seems highly unlikely that the Syrians could have developed a nuclear program this advanced, even with North Korea’s help.   Where could it have all come from?

Remember Saddam’s nukes

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About Pete Garcia

Christian, father, husband, veteran, pilot, and sinner saved by grace. I am a firm believer in, and follower of Jesus Christ. I am Pre-Trib, Dispensational, and Non-Denominational (but I lean Southern Baptist).

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