Israel Strikes Enemies in Syria

The Israel Defence Forces (IDF) say they have struck many targets in Syria overnight, primarily belonging to forces allied to Iran. Reports from Damascus said that loud explosions were heard in the Syrian capital and pictures on social media showed a number of fires.

Positions in Syria struck by IsraelPositions in Syria struck by Israel (screenshot from Twitter)

Yesterday evening the IDF announced on Twitter that they had carried out wide-scale strikes against Iranian Quds Force and Syrian Armed Forces targets in Syria, in response to the rockets fired at Israel by an Iranian force in Syria in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

That predawn attack against Israel involved at least four rockets fired from Syria, all of which were intercepted by the Iron Dome defence system. Officials in the Galilee and Golan Heights areas said that red alert sirens were triggered around 5am Jerusalem time.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that at least 11 people died in the Israeli attacks, 7 of whom were foreign nationals, believed to be Iranians. Rami Abdul Rahman, the head of the London-based organisation, said:

“We cannot confirm whether the seven foreigners killed are all Iranians
or pro-Iranian fighters of different nationalities”

As usual, Syrian state media announced a very different version of events, claiming that at least two civilians were killed and several others wounded in the Israeli air attacks. They also claimed that Syrian air defences destroyed most of the missiles fired towards Damascus – in clear contradiction of other reports.

One of those reports came from Danny Makki, a British-Syrian journalist based in Damascus, who tweeted:

‘Chilling on the balcony, next thing this happens, seems like multiple (Israeli)
strikes in the south of Damascus, Syria.’

So now, having hit enemies in Syria quite hard, the IDF said on Wednesday morning it was preparing for several possible Iranian responses, ranging from total calm to a full-scale attack.

“We are preparing for defence and attack, and we will respond to any attempt to retaliate.”