Israel Carries Out Multiple Strikes

I am not a huge fan of ZERO HEDGE, but this was some good commentary on the actions:

Israeli strikes have hit an arms depot operated by the Lebanese Hezbollah group near Damascus airport, Syrian opposition sources told Al Jazeera. Witnesses said a total of five strikes occurred near the Damascus airport road, about 25km from the capital, early on Thursday. Syrian state TV quoted a military source saying rockets fired from Israeli territory targeted a military area in the southwestern part of the airport which caused explosions.

Al Jazeera’s Hashem Ahelbarra, reporting from the Turkish city of Gaziantep near Syria’s border, said opposition activists posted pictures online showing a huge fire near the area.

“We do understand that the Israelis have been carrying out strikes in the past. The last one was in January targeting the Mezze military base.

“In 2015 they also launched attacks near the capital Damascus and in the Golan Heights, killing two prominent Hezbollah commanders, including Jihad Mughniya who is the son of the top military commander of Hezbollah Imad Mughniya who was also killed in Damascus in 2008,” Ahelbarra said.

[….]

“The prime minister has said that whenever we receive intelligence that indicated an intention to transfer advanced weapons to Hezbollah, we will act.” Katz added. An Israeli military spokeswoman declined to comment.

[….]

This is the second Israeli attack on Syria in the past week: on Sunday, Israeli forces bombed a camp for pro-government forces killed three fighters near the Golan Heights on Sunday according to AFP. Two fighters were also wounded in the attack on the Al-Fawwar camp near Quneitra in southwestern Syria, adding that it was unclear whether the damage was inflicted by an air strike or shelling.

Israel’s army declined to comment Sunday on the attack. On Friday the army said it targeted positions inside Syria in retaliation for mortar fire that hit the northern part of the Golan Heights….

Some news about troop positions that I was not tracking with via DEBKA FILE:

Early Thursday, April 26, a mixed Syrian-Iranian-Hizballah force embarked on a general offensive in southern Syria ready for a leap on Israel’s Golan border. They moved forward in the face of Israeli warnings that were relayed from Moscow to Tehran and Hizballah.

Israel’s Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman arrived in Moscow Tuesday for a two-day international conference on Security. After meeting Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Lieberman said that Israel would not stand for Iranian or Hizballah concentrating military forces on the Syrian-Israeli border. He praised the coordination mechanism between the IDF and the Russian Syrian command as working effectively and preventing unnecessary friction. Officers of the two militaries had so far met nine times. Lieberman will also meet Russian Defense Minister Gen. Sergey Shogun during the visit.

This latest warning was issued by Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman, who is visiting the Russian capital this week to attend an international security conference. After meeting Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Defense Minister Gen. Sergey Shogun, the Israeli minister stated clearly on Wednesday: “Israel will not allow the concentration of Iranian and Hizballah forces on its Golan border.”  

By Thursday morning, it was evident that a decision had been taken in Moscow, Tehran, Damascus and Beirut to ignore Lieberman’s warning.

DEBKAfile’s military sources report that early Thursday, Shiite militias under the command of Iranian Revolutionary Guards officers, alongside Hizballah troops, organized as the Southern Shield Brigade, launched their offensive at Mt. Hermon southwest of Damascus, on their way to the Syrian-Israeli Golan border in the region of Quneitra. The Syrian contingents taking part in this push are the Syrian army’s elite 42nd Brigade and elements of the 4th Mechanized Division.

Their first objective is to capture a string of villages held by Syrian rebel groups in the region of Hadar on the Hermon slopes. They are advancing towards the Golan along the Beit Jinn route.

There is no word yet on whether the warning issued by the defense minister from Moscow has produced a direct Israeli response to the provocation. Very possibly the five explosions and ball of fire they set off at Damascus international airport Thursday morning may prove to be connected to that response.

 

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