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Syria Completes Destruction of Chemical Weapon Producing Equipment 97

rtoz writes "Chemical weapons watchdog OPCW has declared that Syria has rendered inoperable chemical weapons production facilities and mixing/filling plants. This operation has been completed just one day before the deadline (1 November 2013) set by the OPCW Executive Council. The Joint OPCW-UN Mission has inspected 21 of the 23 sites declared by Syria, and 39 of the 41 facilities located at those sites. The two remaining sites were not visited due to safety and security concerns. But Syria declared those sites as abandoned and that the chemical weapons program items they contained were moved to other declared sites, which were inspected."
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Syria Completes Destruction of Chemical Weapon Producing Equipment

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  • by dreamchaser ( 49529 ) on Friday November 01, 2013 @08:09AM (#45298849) Homepage Journal

    That's the real question. It's great that can't make any more of the stuff, but I'll bet they have enough to kill just about everyone in the country left hidden.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Assad does not need chemical weapons to kill the uprising. He gives away the chemicals because it distracts countries from the civil war and they get the feeling that they can achieve something by completing the destruction of chemical weapons.

      • Assad does not need chemical weapons to kill the uprising.

        Are you sure? He seems to be making a bit of a chore out of it so far.

      • And (this is speculation, not my speculation, but speculation nonetheless) because the weapons were apparently used without Assad's consent by a general in his armed forces. He's worried that the civil war will be breeding grounds for a coup, and ditching the WMDs actually consolidates his power to an extent.

    • No, the real question is "how many production facilities are still operational?"

      What is carefully ignored in TFS and most other headlines is that Syria has "destroyed or rendered inoperative all of the DECLARED chemical weapon production facilities."

      Note the difference between "all" and "all declared".

      • by jbolden ( 176878 )

        How long do you think a major chemicals weapons plant could operate secretly? If you mean some small project to produce small quantities: those things are really dangerous to the people who make them and try and store them. Syria having had a large industrial program knows that.

        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          by Anonymous Coward

          Well, in the case of the Aleppo 4 site, the answer was until the Israelis bomb the fuck out of it. Also, note that 2 sites were not visited out of "security concerns" and at the sites that were visited neither were 2 of the facilities. Yet on faith we're supposed to assume they are also shut down.

        • How long do you think a major chemicals weapons plant could operate secretly?

          I think you could avoid operating it until people find something else to get excited about, then turn it back on full-bore, if you've refrained from destroying the plant by the expedient of not declaring it.

          Starting over from scratch is also possible, but way more expensive....

          • by jbolden ( 176878 )

            Syria is always going to have the capacity to openly start massive chemical weapons production. That's not a question. They have the capacity. But there will be satellites and intelligence in Syria for the foreseeable future. Syria isn't permanently giving up the weapons by more than treaty.

    • If properly deployed, it doesn't take much more than a grocery store's stock on hand to really screw a lot of people up and kill some of them, especially in a confined space.

      The biggest danger of chemical weapons is not the harm they cause, but the cruel way in which they do it and the simplicity with which one can produce and use them.

    • by sjames ( 1099 )

      This is just the 1st phase complete. As TFA clearly states, the next phase is to address the destruction of the existing stockpile.

  • Like North Korea (Score:4, Interesting)

    by cdrudge ( 68377 ) on Friday November 01, 2013 @08:16AM (#45298879) Homepage

    So is this like North Korea over the years where they declare a nuclear enrichment facility deactivated, but then a month later we hear that facility is back in operation?

    • Nah. Syria was having problems secuting the sites from the rebels so this id likely more of a freed up troops are more valuable thing.

      Syria doesn't need chemical weapons like iraq did or even N.Korea. Russia has pretty much dhown they are willing to either defend syria or supply it with anything it might be lacking in irs defense. N.K. in the otherhad has very large neighbors who only seem willing to defend them because they don't want whoever will replace them right next door.

      In other words, china doesn't.

    • Except that we're more likely to invade Syria if they renege on their promises. They don't have nukes, which genuinely scare us away. And we'd be adding a friendly puppet government in a region that is up for grabs, which would be a gain for us (polititically, and by us I don't mean we the citizens.) Making North Korea into a puppet would have pretty harsh consequences from China, one of our biggest economic partners. We'd be nuking ourselves twice.
    • Did North Korea ever cooperate on this level with UN inspection teams?

  • Syria: As you can see, we've gotten rid off all the chemical weapons.
    UN: Great stuff, and I see you've redecorated this building too.
    Syria: Yes, we decided the old place could do with a lick of paint or two.
    UN: That curtain's new...
    Syria: Oh erm, we had someone come do some Feng shui to allow the Chi to flow better...

  • 21 of 23 and 39 of 41...yep, that's all of need to check those four at all.
    • 23 sites with 41 facilities. Each site has at least 1 facility, some sites have 2 or more.
      On 2 of these sites a total of 2 of the facilities have not been tested.
      So it's not 4, it's still just 2.
      2 facilities, one each in 2 sites.

  • Remember when Slashdot used to have articles on circuit boards, programming languages, cool games and hardware?

    What's next Ben and Jen's new baby (or whoever the f#ck is the latest tabloid bait)

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Did you just compare a bloody civil war to celebrity gossip.

      Things that matter, fuckwit.

  • Wow, they had a chemical weapon capable of producing equipment? Slashdot better upgrade their grammatical and punctuation defenses to deal with that one. Type to launch a preemptive hyphen at that title.
  • From the looks of the comments, none of you have any clue whats really going on. This is all simply part of the run-up to the invasion of Iran. Timeline for the destruction of all chemical weapons in Syria is mid 2014, the same time the next phase our new missile defence system goes online in Israel (David's Sling). And by then Iran will be realling from a near 100% emargo on their oil exports --a bill currently making its way through Congress. Unless something very drastic changes, it looks like we will se

    • by fnj ( 64210 )

      OK, we have now heard from la-la land. Any invasion of Iran is a complete and utter fantasy on the face of it. Did you not learn anything from what happened in Iraq from 2003 until the invaders stuck their fingers in their ears, sang kumbaya and made a slow motion capitulation about a decade later? Iran has well over twice the population, and much more importantly is filled with forbidding, highly defensible terrain, not just a big indefensible desert.

      The combined crushingly massive coalition forces that ex

      • by Uberbah ( 647458 )

        Did you not learn anything from what happened in Iraq from 2003 until the invaders stuck their fingers in their ears, sang kumbaya and made a slow motion capitulation about a decade later?

        Nope. This country didn't learn a damned thing after the Iraq war. Then as now, we have no problems fostering sectarian civil wars, only now it's in Syria. Then as now, mass market media repeats claims from "unnamed senior officials" as fact. Then as now, obviously weak justifications are used to drum up support for an

        • by fnj ( 64210 )

          I understand. Not to mention the whole business of the US supporting Al Qaeda in Syria while ostensibly fighting it elsewhere.

          • by Uberbah ( 647458 )

            Well, it did make for a good use of the chin-scratching T-Rex meme, which of course my Google-fu isn't finding an actual link for at the moment:

            'If Obama is arming Al Qaeda rebels in Syria
            could be be detained under section 1021 of the NDAA?'

            Maybe they'd thought no one would notice after jumping the shark with MEK. []

  • Now the genocide and holodomor [] can safely continue indefinitely! Aren't we a nice species?

    • Both sides are engaging in war crimes against civilian population, though rebels are more prone to specifically targeting groups based on their background (mostly religious, but then there are also Kurds), which is closer to the actual definition of genocide; the regime, on the other hand, just targets all political opposition.

      So what's your suggestion on fixing it? With both sides having blood on their hands, the only way Syria could have something resembling peace right now is if an international coalitio

  • 21 of the 23 sites declared by Syria

    And how many sites do they have that they didn't declare?

Think of it! With VLSI we can pack 100 ENIACs in 1 sq. cm.!