Syrian military expert Brigadier-General (Ret.) Haytham Hassoun said in a July 3, 2022 show on Al-Ikhbariya TV (Syria) that the only way to create true deterrence against Israel is by obtaining nuclear weapons. He said that if Israel has nuclear weapons, Arab countries should as well, but that Arab countries have been forced to make do with "passive defense" and conventional weapons.
Interviewer: "When Nasrallah spoke about the ammonia storage facilities in Haifa, that was an important indication about the [potential] use of conventional weapons..."
Haytham Hassoun: "It was in order to create an equation of mutual fear, or mutual deterrence. An active approach in this case means obtaining nuclear weapons. Who said that the Zionist entity is entitled to possess such weapons, but Syria or Egypt are not?
"I am talking specifically about those who want to threaten the Zionist entity. They can threaten the Zionist entity only with corresponding weapons — nuclear weapons. It is no use saying 'I do not want to possess nuclear weapons.' We must have this weapon if we can. I can present many examples. How come the U.S. does not dare to attack North Korea? Because North Korea has nuclear weapons. Why doesn't [the U.S.] dare to target other countries? The issue is connected to the ability to obtain these weapons.
"Until now, there has been no Arab country capable of doing this.
"Therefore, we make do with passive defense, which means developing the power of deterrence with conventional weapons, in order to force the Zionist entity to restrain its [nuclear] weapons, which turns them into a burden for the Zionist entity."