David Albright, Paul Brannan and Jacqueline Shire
The Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS)
October 25, 2007
ISIS has obtained commercial satellite imagery from DigitalGlobe taken on October 24, 2007 that shows the suspected reactor construction building completely removed and the ground scraped (Figure 1). ISIS released a report on October 23, 2007 that featured DigitalGlobe imagery from August 10, 2007 showing the suspected reactor construction site of the September 6, 2007 Israeli raid inside Syria. A comparison of these two images effectively confirms that this site was indeed the target of the Israeli raid. (see Figures 2 through 5)
The pump house and secondary structure still remain in the October 24, 2007 imagery, but the suspected reactor building has been razed to the ground. Dismantling and removing the building at such a rapid pace dramatically complicates any inspection of the facilities and suggests
that Syria may be trying to hide what was there. Iraq followed a similar strategy in the 1991 after the first Gulf War, though eventually the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and UN inspectors pieced together a full picture of Iraq's activities. Iran razed the site at Lavizan and insisted that no prohibited nuclear activity was conducted at the facility.
Tractors or bulldozers can be seen in the October 24 imagery where the suspected reactor building once stood. Scrape marks can be seen around the razed part of the site. There also appears to be a trench in the October 24, 2007 imagery that is better defined than in the August 10, 2007 imagery. This trench may be more visible as a result of the Syrians digging up buried pipelines running from the pump station to the now-gone suspected reactor construction building. Because of a more prominent shadow in the October 24, 2007 imagery, there appears to be evidence of an underground portion of the suspect reactor building.