Javascript Menu by Ariel Center for Policy Research

Ariel Center for Policy Research (ACPR)

ACPR Research


The Chemical and Biological Threat of Islam

Dany Shoham
Policy Paper No. 118

(In the book Muhammad's Monsters David Bukay, (ed.),
AR: Balfour Books and Israel: ACPR Publishers, 2004, 300 pages.)


The Moslem bloc includes at least six countries which possess chemical and biological weapons (CBW): four Arab states - Syria, Libya, Iraq, and Egypt - and two non-Arab states - Iran and Pakistan.  Advanced long-range ballistic missile technologies are concurrently and persistently being procured by those countries to enable the conjunction of these two strategic weapon systems. Saudi Arabia, Sudan, and Algeria, as well, are likely to pursue CBW, if not already possessing them. 

Kazakhstan, essentially a Moslem state, forms a most significant bridge for CBW technology transfer from the former USSR into Middle Eastern Moslem countries, while Pakistan plays a similar role with respect to technology absorption from the Far East. Likewise, further neighboring Muslim countries extend their own contributions in this concern. Three major Moslem states - Iraq, Iran, and Libya - are extreme by nature, particularly in their attitude towards Israel and the West. Iran and Libya, plus Syria and Egypt, are being assisted by another non-Moslem radical state of remarkable capacity - North Korea. In addition, the evolving inter-Moslem, CBW-related technological cooperation (for instance, Iran-Syria, Egypt-Libya, Iraq-Sudan) may rapidly develop into a strategic one, and may achieve a supreme quantum leap if Iraq, for example, decides to share its profound CBW expertise with other Arab and Moslem countries. The spread of such a critical mass to the Arab and Muslim world (for instance, to Iran, through Arab countries like Libya) would create a greater threat to Israel and to southern Europe, at the least and has far-reaching ramifications because it essentially eliminates dependency on non-Muslim resources, thereby reducing intelligence sources and allowing maximum inter-Moslem cooperation.

Extrapolating from the current ongoing processes, one should conclude that it is only a matter of time before the amassing of CBW stockpiles, including remarkably long-range ballistic missile warheads, will be accomplished. This will enable their launching from every enemy area to any location within Israel, as well as to considerable parts of Europe. In terms of basic strategic time, there is no fundamental difference if this will occur in three, six, or nine years.

The uncertainty as to the validity of an Islamic nuclear umbrella furnished by the nuclear capabilities of Pakistan may soon diminish if, or more precisely when, Iran (not mentioning Iraq or other Arab countries) acquires nuclear arms. An expected, virtually inevitable, development of that sort can generate a severe strategic shift, in that at least Iran, Iraq, and Libya will feel free to employ CBW in the belief that they are protected from nuclear counter-strikes, and are even willing to absorb a CB attack.

All in all, the described circumstances may evolve into the formation of a hostile Middle Eastern Moslem bloc that would pose a distinct chemical and biological menace to Israel and southern Europe, if not further. The increasing offensive potential of chemical and especially biological weapons constitutes a strategic threat that should be expediently faced.

For the complete text of this article, click here.