Nikita Demosthenes passes on a DEBKAfile story that Saddam’s WMD were moved to Syria shortly before the war:

Nizar Najoef, a Syrian journalist who recently defected from Syria to Western Europe and is known for bravely challenging the Syrian regime, said in a letter Monday, January 5, to Dutch newspaper “De Telegraaf,” that he knows the three sites where Iraq’s WMD are kept. The storage places are:

1. Tunnels dug under the town of al-Baida near the city of Hama in northern Syria. These tunnels are an integral part of an underground factory, built by the North Koreans, for producing Syrian Scud missiles. Iraqi chemical weapons and long-range missiles are stored in these tunnels.

2. The village of Tal Snan, north of the town of Salamija, where there is a big Syrian airforce camp. Vital parts of Iraq’s WMD are stored there.

3. The city of Sjinsjar on the Syrian border with the Lebanon, south of the city Homs.

Najoef writes that the transfer of Iraqi WMD to Syria was organized by the commanders of Saddam Hussein̢۪s Special Republican Guard, including General Shalish, with the help of Assif Shoakat , Bashar Assad̢۪s cousin. Shoakat is the CEO of Bhaha, an import/export company owned by the Assad family.

DEBKA is a very controversial source and, frankly, I’m highly skeptical. But this at least bears keeping an eye on.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Mark-NC says:

    Please tell me this isn’t the first of a series of excuses for why we need to invade Syria!

    Richard Perle, in an interview with Charlie Rose recently, said: “Well in fact I think we have now demonstrated that we are not only capable of doing this” (invading Syria), “we did it in Afghanistan and Iraq, but we’re ready to do it again. And if Bashar Assad believes he’s immune, he’s inviolable, it can’t happen here, he may be in for a rude surprise”.

  2. James Joyner says:

    Six months ago, I would have said war with Syria was quite likely in the near term. Now, though, it sure looks like Assad is going the way of Khaddafy and the Iranian mullahs and getting more cooperative.