No question about it really. The pushing and pressuring to get the Americans to further expand their crusade in the Middle East is being done primarily by the Israelis and their powerful lobby in Washington. And much much more goes on out of public view than these occasionally statements that make it into the mainstream media:
ISRAEL PUTS PRESSURE ON SYRIA
Ankara, 14 April - Israel joined pressure on Syria on Monday, demanding it get Hizbollah guerrillas out of Lebanon and accusing it of supporting terrorism.
Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom, visiting Turkey, accused Damascus of harboring terrorists and granting refuge to senior Iraqi officials.
President Bush on Sunday warned Damascus it must cooperate with the United States and deny help to Iraqi officials fleeing a post-Saddam Iraq.
Shalom, speaking after talks with Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul, accused Damascus of undermining peace in the Middle East amid fears the U.S.-led war in the region could now spread to Iraq's neighbors.
SYRIA DENIES HAVING CHEMICAL
WEAPONS, SADDAM LINK
Reuters - Monday, April 14: DAMASCUS (Reuters) - Syria denied on Monday U.S. charges that it had chemical weapons and, brushing aside British allegations, said it had never cooperated with Saddam Hussein's administration.
"We say to him (President Bush) that Syria has no chemical weapons and that the only chemical, biological and nuclear weapons in the region are in Israel, which is threatening its neighbors and occupying their land," Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Buthaina Shaaban told Reuters.
Bush said on Sunday that he believed Syria had chemical weapons and that Damascus must cooperate with Washington and not harbor any fleeing Iraqi leaders.
"There was never any cooperation between Damascus and Baghdad, our support was for the Iraqi people who have suffered the plights of wars," Shaaban added in reaction to remarks by British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw, who said Syria had cooperated with Saddam's rule.