When it comes to Israel, the Obama administration leaks like a sieve, here and here too. Diarrhea of the mouth is epidemic in an adminsitration that severely punishes leakers, which would be funny if it weren't so deadly.
Mind you, this comes from an administration that threatens journalists who criticize Obama and spies on them. And according to Lara Logan of 60 Minutes on the Benghazi cover-up, there was "an extraordinary amount of pressure on the people involved not to talk. And an extraordinary amount of pressure on anyone in the government--the military side, the political side--not to say anything outside of official channels. I mean, to the point where people that we've known for years would call people who were no longer in their positions, and they would call someone else that we knew, and messages would be delivered like that because there couldn't be any trail linking you directly to our story. The administration is cracking down so hard on leakers: no one wants to put anything in writing, everybody is scared to talk over the phone, people want to meet in person--all of that makes it that much harder to investigate anything."
Israeli planes strike Syrian military base, U.S. official says By Barbara Starr, CNN Pentagon Correspondent
(CNN) -- Israeli warplanes struck a military base near the Syrian port city of Latakia this week, an Obama administration official told CNN on Thursday.
An explosion at a missile storage site in the area was reported in the Middle Eastern press, but an attack has not been confirmed by the Israeli government.
The target, according to the Obama administration official, was missiles and related equipment the Israelis felt might be transferred to the Lebanon-based militant group Hezbollah. The official declined to be identified because of the sensitive nature of the information.
There was some confusion about the timing of the attack, with some reports saying it happened Wednesday, and others saying Thursday.
When asked for comment, an Israel Defense Forces spokeswoman told CNN: "We don't refer to foreign reports."
Israel has been accused several other times this year of launching airstrikes inside Syria, including once in January. In the January incident, a U.S. official said Israeli fighter jets bombed a Syrian convoy suspected of moving weapons to Hezbollah.
Syrian rebels warn against talks with regime
Israel's military did not comment on any of the allegations at the time, but has long said it would target any transfer of weapons to Hezbollah or other groups designated as terrorists, as well as any effort to smuggle Syrian weapons into Lebanon that could threaten Israel.
Thursday's reports of a blast come amid a Syrian civil war in which Hezbollah, a Shiite Muslim militant group, has been helping Syrian government forces. Syria's government is led by Bashar al-Assad, a member of the Shiite offshoot Alawite sect; the rebels and other militants fighting al-Assad's forces and Hezbollah are largely made up of Sunni Muslims.
The Syrian conflict began in March 2011 after government forces cracked down on peaceful protesters during the Arab Spring movement and is now a full-blown civil war. The United Nations estimates that more than 100,000 people have died in the conflict.
International inspectors are trying to ensure that Syria eliminates its chemical weapons stockpile by the middle of next year. Syria agreed to the program under international pressure earlier this year.
One of the monitoring groups, the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, said Thursday that Syria has destroyed all its declared chemical weapons mixing, filling and production facilities, and all of the chemical weapons at 21 inspected sites have been placed under seal.
The watchdog body's announcement of the facilities' destruction meant that Syria met a key deadline in the elimination program.