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Lawmakers: Syrian's air defense not impenetrable

Published: Sunday, May 5, 2013 10:00 a.m. CDT
Caption
(Vahid Reza Alaei)
FILE -- This photo released on Tuesday, Sept. 21, 2010, by the Iranian Defense Ministry, claims to show the upgraded surface-to-surface Fateh-110 missile at an undisclosed location, in Tehran, Iran. Israel has carried out airstrikes against Syria twice in the past three days to target what officials say are shipments of highly accurate, Iranian-made guided missiles known as Fateh-110s. Israel worries the missiles could be transferred to Lebanonís Hezbollah, providing a major boost to the Shiite militant groupís arsenal. (AP Photo/Iranian Defense Ministry,Vahid Reza Alaei, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Two lawmakers say Syria's air defense system isn't as strong as once thought and add that Israel's recent strikes there show the regime is vulnerable.

Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona and Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont said Sunday that Syrian President Bashar Assad's air defense systems were not impenetrable. Israel in recent days has launched airstrikes targeting a shipment of advanced missiles believed to be headed for the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah.

McCain says Syria crossed another "red line" in transferring weapons to U.S. foes. McCain, however, is not advocating U.S. ground forces go into Syria to secure the weapons. Instead, he says, the United States should use its military might from afar.

McCain spoke with "Fox News Sunday." Leahy spoke to NBC's "Meet the Press."

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