In an airstrike by the Israeli Air Force, the 51st air defense regiment of the Syrian air force armed with the Pantsir-S and BAVAR-373 air defense system were destroyed, including the newly acquired armor-S1 close air defense system reported Chinese news agency Sina.com.cn.
Collateral damages and fatality include Syrian ground-based military personnel, a major and a captain of the Syrian army.
It should be noted that the Russian S-300 systems put into service with the Syrian Armed Forces have never been successfully used against Israeli or Turkish drones and fighters.
According to a report from Reuters on the 19th, the Israeli military admitted that its fighter planes launched a large-scale airstrike targeting the Iranian Al-Quds Brigade and Syrian government forces.
The Israeli military said in its official Twitter that it was “focusing” on Iran, and said that the Israeli intelligence agency can confirm that the 840 operation group belonging to the Iranian Al-Quds Brigade is responsible for the explosives placed on the Syrian-Israeli border.
Regarding this airstrike, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu stated that he would adhere to the policy of “preventing Iranian military forces from taking root in Syria and using Syrian land as an attack against Israel.” Netanyahu threatened that anyone who attacked or tried to attack Israel would “spoil his blood.”
Israel is surrounded by a dangerous strategic environment and Iran-lead terrorist organization is a constant threat to the Middle East and State of Israel.
After the airstrike on the 18th, the Israeli military also wrote on Twitter, “This is a warning: if you attack Israel, we will defend ourselves. We will not allow Iran to take root in Syria.”
The U.S. President Trump recently intends to strike at Iran’s domestic nuclear facilities or militia organizations outside Iran, and the US Secretary of State Pompeo recently visited Israel. So at this time, the actions of the Israeli military should have a fairly clear purpose. Sure enough, Pompeo visited the Golan Heights on the 19th, and he became the first US Secretary of State to visit this place in more than 50 years.
Pompeo wrote in his guestbook when he visited the Golan Heights, I hope I am not the last U.S. Secretary of State to visit the Golan Heights. In his speech, Pompeo also found “reasonable reasons” for Israel to occupy the Golan Heights.
Israel has sovereignty over the Golan Heights generally not recognized internationally, what the Israelis have to do is to constantly emphasize and retain military control over Golan heights. However, after Iran’s military power entered Syria with the help of the Hezbollah terrorist, Israel really felt the strategic need of Iranian missiles being “close to its doorstep”. The Israeli military believes that if Iran deploys ballistic missiles around Damascus, it will pose a deadly threat to all of Israel.
The Israeli side stated that the main purpose of the continuous bombing of Syria in recent years was to combat the hostile presence of Iran and its servants near the northern border.
At the moment when the US government is about to change, Israel must reiterate its strategic position on Syria and Iran to its US allies. Especially with regard to the Iran issue, the Obama administration signed the Iran nuclear agreement in 2015, giving Iran breathing space.
The Trump administration tore up this agreement that is good for Israel, but if the Biden administration comes to power, it is likely to return to the 2015 version of the 6+1 Iran nuclear agreement. In that case, the Americans would restrict Israeli military operations against Iranian targets.
Therefore, if Israel’s airstrike on Damascus, Syria on the 18th, is aimed at Iran’s “killing BAVAR-373 and Pantsir surface-to-air missile”.
An IDF lieutenant general threatened in an interview on the 19th that we can no longer tolerate the Assad regime. This statement is not only directed at Damascus and Tehran, but certainly should include dissatisfaction with Russia’s strong support of the Assad government.
At present, Russia has obtained long-term (almost indefinitely) rights to use the port of Tartus and the Khmeim airbase in Syria. Although the Russian air defense missiles still failed to respond to the Israeli airstrikes on November 18, there is no doubt that the return of Russian navy and air forces to the Mediterranean has had a strategic impact on the geostrategic pattern of the Middle East.
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