Iran attempts to bomb Israel; Israel destroys Iranian positions in Syria

Glen Norman
May 11, 2018

Israel's anti-aircraft system - known as the Iron Dome - intercepted several rockets, while the rest fell in the desert. "We are located here facing Syria and Lebanon and this is the reality which we will overcome together, especially with the IDF (Israel Defence Forces)", said Alex Gudish, a Golan settler.

In February, Israel shot down what it said was an armed Iranian drone that entered Israeli airspace.

Syria said it was the Israeli strikes that marked a "new phase" of direct involvement in the country's seven-year conflict.

"The Iranian regime's deployment into Syria of offensive rocket and missile systems aimed at Israel is an unacceptable and highly risky development for the entire Middle East".

Israel's military went on high alert Tuesday and bomb shelters were ordered open in the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights following reports of "irregular activity of Iranian forces in Syria".

"We hit nearly all of the Iranian infrastructure in Syria", Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman said Thursday at the Herzliya Conference, a security and defense convention. "If it will rain in Israel, there will be a biblical flood on the other side".

There was no immediate information about casualties in Syria.

Intelligence, logistics and storage facilities and vehicles were targeted, as well as the origin of the rockets, an Israeli army spokesman said. Israeli fighter jets struck a Syrian army position south of Damascus, a pro-Assadcommander said. The intent: both to set-back the development of Iran's military infrastructure in the country, but also clearly to send a powerful signal to Tehran.

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Syria's military later reported that three people had died in the Israeli attack. Israel has not commented on the strike. This would allow them to attack Israel not only from Lebanese soil - where Israel waged a destructive war with Hezbollah in 2006 - but also from across the border. The violence intensified between 2012 and 2014, spilling into the UN-supervised neutral demilitarized zone in the Golan Heights.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel's air strikes were "appropriate" because Iran had "crossed a red line".

The United States condemned Iran's "provocative rocket attacks" and supported Israel's right to defend itself. They are trying to transfer forces and deadly weapons there with the explicit goal of attacking the State of Israel. Israel regards Iran as its biggest threat and has repeatedly targeted Iranian forces and allied militia in Syria. "I hope that we ended this chapter and that everyone understood". According to Conricus, Israel notified Russian Federation before carrying out the overnight strikes.

The third is that Russian Federation, which itself has a large military presence in Syria, will continue to indulge Israel's repeated incursions, preferring diplomatic rebukes to military confrontation.

Israel insisted it did not want to escalate the situation and encouraged its citizens to continue their daily routine.

The occupied Golan Heights is a 690 sqm plateau captured from Syria at the conclusion of the six-day war in 1967 and annexed in 1981 in a move not recognised by the worldwide community.

Israel captured the Golan Heights in the 1967 war and annexed it in 1981.

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