by Ronen Solomon
Intelligence researcher Ronen Solomon analyzes the reports of ISIS' threats to commit attacks in the subway in Paris and New York. What really drives the West to act against the Islamic State organization?
The real threat ISIS poses is mass attacks in aerial transportation and subways using chemical and biological weapons.This is the real concern that brings the Western intelligence services to act firmly against ISIS, not just the horror videos.
The emerging concern is that ISIS activists holding western nationalities will be able to lay their hands on unconventional weapons (chemicals and biological toxins) from Syrian stockpiles and possibly smuggle them into Europe in order to carry out attacks in subways, similar to the use of sarin gas (organophosphorus compound) in March 1995, in which thousands of people were injured on the subway in Tokyo.
This assessment is now also joined by an announcement by the Iraqi prime minister, who said Thursday that the intelligence of his country has revealed a plan by ISIS to conduct a terror attack in subways in the United States and Paris.
Syria has one of the world's largest stockpile of sarin, and Israeli intelligence sources estimate that, in spite of the disarmament agreement signed with the West, some of these stockpiles are still in hiding in Syria.
On September 18, "Reuters" revealed Israel believes that Syria has maintained its chemical weapons caches ready for use – despite the fact Assad's regime previously gave away the raw materials used to manufacture such weapons. "Reuters" was basing on the words of a senior Israeli defense official, who expressed concern that the fighters of the Islamic State in Syria will try to put their hands on chemical weapons. The source revealed that Israel knows that the Syrians kept for themselves combat warheads, air-to-ground bombs and anti-tank missiles containing toxic gases such as sarin.
The same source estimated that ISIS can get grenades or missiles armed with sarin gas, and that Israel has already operated to prevent such scenarios when these kind of concerns were raised. Western diplomats have expressed concern that along with chemical threat Syria also has research and development facilities designed to produce the poison ricin.
In the morning of March 20, 1995, during rush hour in the subway in Tokyo, when thousands of people were on their way to work, terrorists of the Japanese religious cult "Aum Shinrikyo" released sarin compound on five train cars in three different lines at the same time.
Members of the cult, known to be extremists, had previously committed acts such as murder, kidnapping, torture, and other acts of terrorism.
The release of the sarin gas was timed so that it would happen as the trains meet under the government offices.
12 infusion bags containing approximately 300-500 cc of sarin each were hidden in lunch boxes and drink containers. At the designated time, the terrorists punctured the bags with a sharp tool and the sarin began spreading in the train cars and stations. 16 stations were contaminated, causing the deaths of 12 and 5,500 casualties with various degrees of injury who were evacuated to 50 different hospitals throughout Tokyo.
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