Israel Sets Red Line for Russia Amid Rising Fear of War

Apr 20, 2018, 00:42
Israel Sets Red Line for Russia Amid Rising Fear of War

Israeli military officials say an Iranian drone that crossed the border in February - triggering an Israeli raid in Syria and resulting in the downing of one of its jets - was "armed with explosives and was tasked to attack Israel", but they have not provided evidence to support this claim. The Israeli military alleges that the aircraft - an Iranian copy of a stealthy Lockheed Martin RQ-170 Sentinel - was armed with explosives and was meant to strike an Israeli village.

Gen. Tomer Bar described that mission as an attack on advanced long-range surface-to-air missiles, components of Syria's air-defense system, and the Iranian mobile control center that had been responsible for the drone. The source noted: "It was the first time we attacked live Iranian targets-both facilities and people". The U.S. ground presence in Syria is very limited and located in the northeast of the country - far removed from Israel's border with Syria.

Israel released details on Tuesday about what it described as an Iranian "air force" deployed in neighbouring Syria, including civilian planes suspected of transferring arms, a signal that these could be attacked should tensions with Tehran escalate.

The air force linked to the Iranian Revolutionary Guards has since 2015 been carrying out routine flights to Syria, he continued.

In February, an Iranian Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (drone) entered Israeli airspace from Syria and was shot down by the IAF.

Israel is preparing for a revenge attack from Iran after the bombing of an air base in Syria last week, which killed seven Iranian soldiers.

Jordan's priorities are stability, border security, and keeping both extremist groups and Iranian militias at bay - interests that the USA and Israel share.

A complete recording of the call is available here. Israel officially remains mum on any airstrikes, although its former air force commander, Amir Eshel, has said there were more than 100 strikes in the past five years. The occupants fled the area, fearing USA airstrikes in retaliation for Syria's use of chemical weapons against civilians in Douma. From Iran's perspective, these are a threat.

Iran's Tansim news agency said seven Iranian military personnel had been killed in the attack, which contributed to a sharp escalation of tensions between the West and Russian Federation.

This satellite image shows damage to the Barzah Research and Development Center in Syria on Sunday after a US -led allied missile attack on Syrian chemical weapons operations.

Earlier the official Syrian media reported that Syrian air defense has shot down a rocket near the city of HOMS. Putin and Rouhani share an interest in Syria quieting down now, and not becoming a financial drain or a military quagmire - by Suleimani turning it into an arena for a direct war with Israel. By establishing a military base in Syria it opens a second front connected to the one it studiously developed in Lebanon by arming its proxy, the Hizbullah.

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