Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert today stated that “Israel has never had stronger deterrence than it has gained in the last few years. Those who need to know are aware that there is no place that Israel can’t reach.” Many have seen this as a not so subtle nod to recent reports that Israel bombed an arms convoy in Sudan in January carrying Iranian supplied weapons on their way to Hamas in Gaza. The airstrike in a desert area northwest of Port Sudan city, near Mount al-Sha’anoon killed 39 people and destroyed 17 arms laden trucks.
Ha’aretz quoted unnamed Israeli security sources who stated that “an international network has been set in place in which smugglers move arms caches from Iran through the Persian Gulf to Yemen, on to Sudan and then to Egypt and Sinai where they are brought into the Gaza Strip through tunnels.” These weapons include anti-tank missiles, small arms, and military grade high explosives, as well as missiles.
The government of Sudan is said to be very embarrassed by this attack but apparently not so embarrassed by the arrest warrant issued against Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir by the International Criminal Court on charges of war crimes in the Darfur region. Bashir has been to Egypt and Eritrea in recent days, is visiting Libya today and is expected in Ethiopia and Qatar for an Arab Summit. It’s enlightening to see that an ICC arrest warrant need not stand in the way of racking up major frequent flier points!