Rest O’ the Roundup
• Thailand foiled a plot to attack Israeli tourists in Bangkok. Acting on an Israeli tip, police arrested two suspects and are searching for nine more suspects believed to be connected to Hezbollah. According to the Bangkok Post, the terrorists targeted Bangkok’s Songkran festival, a traditional New Year’s celebration in Southeast Asia which this year coincided with Passover.
See Ronen Bergman‘s take — Hezbollah still hasn’t managed to avenge the death of arch-terrorist Imad Mugniyah.
• Globes went aboard an Israeli navy patrol boat patrolling offshore gas rigs.
• Israel’s trying to avoid taking sides between the US and Russia over Ukraine. Why? Great question. The Financial Times superficially spins “Israeli silence at odds with Washington.” The Jerusalem Post takes a more thought-provoking look at the issue.
• Chlorine’s the new chemical weapon of choice in Syria. Benny Avni explains why:
For obvious reasons, storing and using chlorine—a chemical widely used for civilian purposes, from cleaning toilets to disinfecting swimming pools—is not prohibited by the chemical convention. Nor is a wide array of crowd-controlling agents like tear gas. Nevertheless, the convention forbids the use of such agents in battle.
More on the story at the Daily Telegraph.
• With no end to the bloodshed in sight, Bashar Assad scheduled a Syrian presidential election for June 3. AFP reports that one opponent has already tossed his
hat head in the ring. The UN gave the move a thumbs down. So did a scathing Times of London staff-ed:
The vote is more like the practice of absolute rulers who seek a veneer of legitimacy through thuggery and fraud. It is an affront to a population that President Bashar Assad has spent more than three years bludgeoning and murdering into submission.
• Despite Iranian and Hezbollah boasts, Assad hasn’t won the civil war yet. And why, asks Abdulrahman al-Rashed, is Assad muzzling Iranian TV crews in Syria?
• Is Iran about to violate the interim nuclear deal? asks Jennifer Rubin.
• Worth reading: The BBC’s groupthink is an enemy to free speech.
For more, see the previous Israel Daily News Stream.