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ELEANOR HALL: So if the US does strike, even a limited strike, how do you expect the Syrian regime to react?
MICHAEL BAR-ZOHAR: They threatened to attack Israel, and I believe that this is going to be the swansong of the Syrian regime because if they attack Israel, we're going to go against them with all our power. So I wouldn't have advise them to do it.
So Assad may try to get a kind of popularity by striking Israel, and always our logic is not always the same as theirs, so we don't know what they're going to do; have our armies on alert. We've placed the batteries of Iron Dome which is the new wonder missile - we've developed the short range missile - in the north and also around Tel Aviv just in case.
ELEANOR HALL: The head of Lebanon's Baath Party has told the ABC that a US strike will provoke retaliation against Israel, and to quote him it says, "If it continues for more than two or three days, there will be a regional war."
Now you say that that wouldn't be in Syria's interests, but do you regard this as just bluster from Lebanon's Baath Party?
MICHAEL BAR-ZOHAR: Well, nobody knows what's going to happen. Today Syria is a very weak country. Their armies perhaps good against the rebels but you can't compare it with Israeli army; if they strike and they are going to be destroyed, so it's not very much more. This of course they speak about doing it.
Even the Iranians still said, "Careful there is going to be a war". Don't forget, we speak about the Middle East where words are free and if you just take all the declarations of the leaders of the Middle East, it is like la-la land. It is awfully different from what really happens in reality.
ELEANOR HALL: Well, you say that the Syrian regime is weak, but it does have powerful allies. I mean what if the Iranians were to be taken at their word? The head of the security committee there is warning that a strike on Syria will have regional repercussions.
MICHAEL BAR-ZOHAR: The Iranians won't do anything before they develop a nuclear weapon. They don't want to be drawn into any conflict today because that's in their worst interest, and the Iranians are not stupid people.
ELEANOR HALL: Do you believe that that is what Israel is preparing for? It has no preparations for a war against Iran at his stage because of that contingency?
MICHAEL BAR-ZOHAR: Not because of that. You know after Obama's speech, we believe that all his promises to Israel that there is a red line and he would never allow Iran to develop nuclear weapons; today we are very sceptical about it because after we saw what he did, what he is doing with Syria, the way he's hesitating and running for cover, we're not sure that he's going to fulfil his promise to Israel.
So finally perhaps Israel will have to do it alone, and that's what we're preparing for. I think that Israel is very, very worried about Obama's behaviour today. It is not only Netanyahu, but it's a general feeling in Israel.
ELEANOR HALL: And so you think that this behaviour by Obama could in fact provoke an earlier strike than may otherwise have been likely by Israel on Iran?
MICHAEL BAR-ZOHAR: Well, I think it's a fair assumption, yes.
ELEANOR HALL: How soon do you think?
MICHAEL BAR-ZOHAR: It depends very much at this stage to which the Iranians are reaching. There is always a stage where we are drawing our red line, but it's a question for months; today it's a question of months.
ELEANOR HALL: Are you concerned about the prospect of an Israeli-Iranian war in the midst of the current crisis?
MICHAEL BAR-ZOHAR: I'm not sure it's going to be a war because we don't have a common boundary, so it can be an exchange of missiles or an attack by air forces. The Iranian army is much weaker than it pretends to be, but the Iran is a big country with pretensions to become once again a world power so they want to develop this nuclear weapon and this is a will and a wish and a dream of everybody - not only from the Ayatollahs but also from the opposition.
ELEANOR HALL: So the stakes are very high. What is the risk that if Israel were to strike Iran it could end up in a regional conflagration?
MICHAEL BAR-ZOHAR: This? Yes. But I believe still that a war - nobody has an interest in war. Neither the Syrians nor the Iraqis nor the Jordanians, so where is the regional war?
ELEANOR HALL: But do you seriously believe that if Israel were to strike against Iran's nuclear capabilities that it wouldn't provoke a serious reaction?
MICHAEL BAR-ZOHAR: It would provoke a reaction perhaps by the Hezbollah, and they have about 30,000 or 40,000 missiles ready to be launched. But then it would provoke a war between Israel and the Hezbollah, and that is going to be the limit.
So they're preparing for the next round, and I think that if we strike Iran, Hezbollah would be ordered by the Iranian masters to attack Israel right away, as well as perhaps the Hamas in Gaza - so we'll have to take care of this to France.
ELEANOR HALL: Dr Bar-Zohar thanks so much for joining us.