Nightly News   |  March 21, 2013

US worried about chemical weapons in Syria

One of the major items on the agenda for President Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyhau is the war in Syria - now in its third year. NBC’s Andrea Mitchell reports.

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>> the major items on the agenda for president obama and prime minister netanyahu is the war in syria now in its third year. it was a deadly day there. a bombing in the heart of damascus. our chief foreign affairs correspondent andrea mitchell also with us from jerusalem tonight with more on these late developments. andrea, good evening.

>> reporter: good evening, brian. on syria there is no daylight between the u.s. and israel on the threat next door. today that suicide bomber blew up a damascus mosque killing 42 people including a prominent sheikh who supports the asasad regime. today president obama warned assad and his forces that the world is watching. the president said they will be held accountable if they use chemical weapons or let them fall into the hands of terrorists. but in secret testimony this week, congressional committees were told some of these deadly weapons are, in effect, locked and loaded. and that the regime plans to use them. israeli intelligence agrees, i'm told, and believe the trigger could well be if aleppo, syria 's largest city, falls to the rebels. if that were to happen, the president and netanyahu have military plans in place to stop the weapons from getting into the hands of terrorists. and of course, brian, the other big concern for the u.s. is iran. just today iran's supreme leader threatened to level israeli cities if israel cites the nuclear program. lots to worry about.

>> andrea mitchell , part of our team covering the middle east this week. andrea, thanks.