Syrian base in HOMS attacked Israel

20 April, 2018, 01:39 | Author: Diane Mills
  • MENAHEM KAHANA

Tel Aviv's Education Minister, Naftali Bennett, attacked Iran for trying to "break our spirit" as tensions between the two nations continue to spike causing renewed World War 3 fears. This is likely because Iran is a close ally of Damascus and it must balance its desire to build influence in Syria with knowledge that a wider war with Israel could threaten its ally, Syria.

This question has gained traction in recent days after Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah sent Israel a warning, proclaiming that "Tehran will not stand idly by while Israel attacks its bases in Syria". Russian Federation and Iran are increasingly becoming the arbiters of the Middle East, while U.S. President Donald Trump, by pushing for the withdrawal of all U.S. forces in Syria, is on the verge of repeating in that country the very same mistake his predecessor committed in Iraq. Initial reports attributed the attack to fighter jets.

Israeli media published images of the text message calling up the reservists which said "emergency call up has been activated".

The targets include Damascus International Airport, through which Iranian transports weapons and other military equipment for its militia proxies on the ground; the Sayqal air base; the T-4 air base; an airfield near Aleppo; and a base in Deir Ezzor. "This opened a new period".

But Israeli officials said the Tiyas air base was being used by troops from Iran and that Israel would not accept such a presence in Syria of its arch foe.

Friedman described the seven Iranians killed as members of the Qods Force, a branch of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps that oversees operations overseas, and one of them as a commander of a drone unit.

So now the whole neighborhood is holding its breath: Will there be a Round 3?

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The Syrian T-4 airbase attacked in an airstrike last week, reported to have been carried out by Israel, was home to an advanced Iranian air-defense system, according to a new report. Iran also plans to provide the missiles to Hezbollah in Lebanon.

Last week's missile strike was therefore the second go at the same target, but this time seemingly with intent to specifically hit the Iranians hard, as the source said. But the Americans denied any role, and Syria, along with its Russian and Iranian allies, quickly pointed the finger at Israel, which remained silent. There is definitely a clash of interests, threat perceptions and a no agreement of how to handle the Iranian presence, designs and operations in Syria. "We have to take into consideration that we are descending into a direct conflict with Iran".

The airstrikes from the US, Britain and France targeted research and storage facilities believed to be involved in the use of chemical weapons, which raises the question: why did the Israeli attack single out Iranian targets? But Suleimani may be overplaying his hand.

That is surely one reason Iran has not retaliated - yet.

Third, to push back against Iran's military, a powerful, moderate and legitimate domestic force is required. "We think that withdrawing the forces from Syria is a mistake".

"This (move) has its roots in the hostile policies of Israel toward the Muslim people of the region", the spokesman stated. The rial has lost one-third of its value just this year, the story noted. Does Israel let him? Their ambitions are big - to create a base to pressure Israel directly, to dominate the Arab states around them and to maintain the fervor of the Islamic Revolution.

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