Israel still on alert: 'We don't know what's going on in Baghdad'
The Jerusalem Post

22 March 2003

Israel plans to maintain a high alert for a possible Iraqi strike because it cannot rule out an attack as an act of desperation by Saddam, Deputy Defense Minister Zeev Boim said Saturday.

"we don't know what's going on in Baghdad," Boim said in an interview.

Saddam and his top commanders could be expected to resort to launching an attack, even while hiding from US forces "because they would have nothing to lose," Boim said.

In addition, the US hold on air fields in western Iraq "is not total control," Boim said in remarks broadcast by Israel Radio. "We will wait for them to take complete control of the area before assessing that the potential threat to us has been lifted."

Iraq fired 39 Scud missiles at Israel during the 1991 Gulf War, from launchers deployed in western Iraq, thefore this is the zone regarded as most threatening from Israel's standpoint.

Israelis are still urged to carry around their gas masks and maintain a sealed room in their home, in the event of a chemical attack. The Air Force is also on tha alert, with pilots on patrol under orders to down any enemy aircraft.