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Israel Fears War with Syria More Likely

Israeli intelligence sources say the likelihood of a war breaking out between Syria and Israel has increased, the Israeli daily Maariv reported.
For years, the prevailing assessment of the Israeli army’s intelligence corps was that the likelihood of a war with Syria was low, but the new assessment estimates that Syria’s top brass is seriously contemplating a military option against Israel, the paper reported.
Reports of the new review coincided with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert calling Syria the “capital of anti-Israeli terrorism.”
“Negotiations with Syria are not realistic,” Olmert said in an interview with Israel’s Army Radio.
The main bone of contention between Israel and Syria is the Golan Heights, a strategic area in northern Israeli spanning about 447 square miles. Israeli captured the Golan Heights in 1967 and annexed the area in 1981, but Syria considers it occupied land.
“The Golan Heights are an integral part of the State of Israel,” Olmert said.
Regarding Syrian President Bashar Al-Asad’s recent statement about his desire for peace with Israel, Olmert said, “Al-Asad says one thing and does the opposite.
“The Syrians contributed to Hizbullah no less than the Iranians,” Olmert said. “Al-Asad was the main nurturer of ammunition to Hizbullah. He holds daily terror activities. To claim that this man intends to make peace with Israel is not serious.”