By Aaron Klein
Syrian President Bashar Assad today reportedly warned he will set the Middle East on fire if NATO forces attack his country.
"If a crazy measure is taken against Damascus, I will need not more than six hours to transfer hundreds of rockets and missiles to the Golan Heights to fire them at Tel Aviv," Assad reportedly said, according to Iran's state-run Fars news agency.
Assad made the comments in a meeting today with Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmad Davutoglu, reported Fars.
Fars reported Davutoglu conveyed a warning from NATO and the U.S. that Syria could face an international military campaign if Assad does not halt his violent crackdown on an insurgency targeting the Syrian president's regime.
Assad also reiterated that Damascus will call on Hezbollah in Lebanon to launch an intensive rocket and missile attack on Israel, reported Fars.
"All these events will happen in three hours, but in the second three hours, Iran will attack the U.S. warships in the Persian Gulf and the U.S., and European interests will be targeted simultaneously," Assad was quoted as saying.
While Assad's remarks could not be immediately verified, Iran, which runs Fars, is a close partner of the Damascus government.
In August, WND was first to report that Assad is taking military measures to prepare for a possible U.S.-NATO campaign against his regime.
Informed Egyptian security officials told WND Assad instructed the Syrian military to be prepared for an air or ground campaign if the international community determines his pledges of reform are not enough.
Also in August, WND was first to report that Turkey secretly passed a message to Damascus that if it does not implement major democratic reforms, NATO may attack Assad's regime, according to Egyptian security officials.
The Egyptian security officials said the message was coordinated with NATO members, specifically with the U.S. and European Union.
The Egyptian officials said Turkish leaders, speaking for NATO, told Assad that he has until March to implement democratization that would allow free elections as well as major constitutional reforms.
Last month, Obama officially asked Assad to step down to pave the way for a democratic system in Syria.
According to informed Middle Eastern security officials speaking to WND, Assad asked his military to make specific preparations in the event of a U.S.-led NATO campaign similar to the military coalition now targeting Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.
Assad Warns to Set Fire on Middle-East in Case of US Attack - Fars News Agency
Turkey to hold military exercise on Syrian border. Assad threatens to destroy Tel Aviv if attacked - DEBKAfile
Assad: Syria will shower Tel Aviv with rockets if attacked by foreign powers - Ha'aretz
Report: Assad threatens regional war - Washington Times
Assad's Monumental Mistake - BPB (Hal Lindsey)