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Asaf Ronel @AsafRonel
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#ICYMI: Iranian forces fired 20 rockets at Israeli army outposts on the Golan Heights last night. In response, Israeli military set out on an extensive retaliatory attack against Iranian targets, the largest Israeli attack in Syria since 1974
No casualties reported on the Israeli side. Several targets connected to the #IRGC & Hezbollah attacked by Israel. Syrian media claims dozens of Israeli missiles were intercepted. There are reports of casualties in Syria.
More bomb shelters opened in northern Israel
The rocket barrage from Syria was directed at Israeli army outposts on the Golan Heights, like the intelligence assessment that the Iranian response will be limited so it won't lead to war. It is the 1st time Israel blames Iran directly for an attack on its territory
Israeli army attacked more than 50 Iranian targets in Syria & a Syrian air defense system that fired at the Israeli jets.
#reminder: Israeli spokespersons threatened to "erase" the Iranian presence in Syria if the Iranians attack & some also talked of toppling/killing Assad
And @IDFSpokesperson shared this video on the attack
And this is how it looked like in Damascus last night
Yesterday a senior Israeli officer told @Haaretz that the army is not very bothered with the expected Iranian attack (that indeed didn't cause much damage) but wanted a disproportionate response to prevent a new norm of Iranian retaliation in response to Israeli attacks in Syria
& yes, the Iranian attack last night targeted the Golan Heights, which is Syrian territory occupied by Israel. Not sure what international law says about the legality of such attacks.
Anyway, 4 rockets reportedly intercepted & 16 landed inside Syria
Also worth noting: Israeli air force has concluded a massive air raid, reportedly met with heavy Syrian anti-aircraft fire (that missed), but the Russian military, that has the most sophisticated air defense systems in Syria, didn't fo a thing.
Netanyahu met Putin yesterday
#update: Assad's official news agency only confirms some targets attacked by Israeli jets (not 50 targets as @IDFSpokesperson says) claims many missiles intercepted & airs "business as usual" photos from Damascus this morning
You know what, I find it hard to believe this is THE Iranian response we've been waiting for: 20 rockets that 4 of them were intercepted & 16 didn't even reach the target in retaliation to the T4 base attack that killed senior #IRGC official? Now they've more reasons to retaliate
According to @IDFSpokesperson, the failed attack on Israeli targets was conducted by #IRGC personnel directly & not via pro-Iranian militias. The Israeli army also claims the counter strike destroyed "most of the Iranian infrastructure in Syria"
Oh, & since Israel claims it was a direct Iranian attack, some Israeli pundits claim it qualifies as casus belli. Any experts in international law in the crowd that can say if it is so even though the attack was against occupied Syrian territory?
#video: this is allegedly the rocket barrage launched towards Israeli army targets. 16 rockets failed to reach the target & 4 intercepted. @IDFSpokesperson claims #IRGC personnel operated the rocket launcher directly. It was then destroyed by Israeli jets (video via @michaelh992)
So how do the dots connect? Unlike @netanyahu, Israeli army chiefs believed the #JCPOA is working. But they supported @netanyahu hoping that if @realDonaldTrump mixes the deal, he will move to a direct confrontation with Iran & Israel won't be alone against the Iranians in Syria
#BREAKING: Israeli DM @AvigdorLiberman: we won't let Syria becoming an Iranian outpost. Israeli air force "attacked all the Iranian infrastructure in Syria"
#update: @IDFSpokesperson says 5 Syrian air defense systems destroyed after firing at Israeli jets. Here is a video of the explosions in the sky above Damascus
Israeli ministers this morning also connect between the Iranian involvement in Syria & the stability of the Iranian regime. They claim that the Iranian people will not tolerate "waste of lives & resources" in a far away country. Not sure this logic works
Interesting #update
#update: Iranian media claims 3 Israeli jets were downed in Syria. @IDFSpokesperson says no Israeli plane was hit
Meanwhile, @SANA_English published an interview Assad gave to a Greek newspaper. amide the Israeli-Iranian growing conflict & the US & Russian presence in Syria, the Syrian tyrant is not worried of a 3rd world war because of Russia's "wise leadership"
According to Amos Harel, @haaretzcom senior defense analyst, the Israeli airstrikes in Syria tonight pushed the Iranian entrenchment in Syria few months backwards
#BREAKING: @SecPompeo sent messages to Iran lately that if Israel will be attacked, the US will respond - @talshalev1
#BREAKING France's Macron calls for 'de-escalation' between Israel, Iran - @AFP
#details of some of the sites targeted by Israeli air force (via @SputnikInt):
Iranian military camp north of the Syrian capital
Arms depots at the #Damascus airport
Mobile launcher that was used to strike at Israeli positions
#BREAKING: Russian's deputy foreign minister says Moscow calls for de-escalation between #Iran and #Israel - via @aawsat_eng Israeli army says it informed the Russians before the attacks via the regular channels
"It remains unclear what caused a person as experienced as the #IRGC’ Quds force chief, Qassem Soleimani, to execute such a half-baked plot, when he knew full well that Israel was watching his every move"…
Meanwhile in the real war that is raging in Syria:
Interesting point via @WSJ: “If this personal relationship btwn Putin & @netanyahu didn’t exist, our relationship w Israel would've been much tenser... If Putin and Netanyahu didn’t have opportunity for informal dialogue, many problems would have been much harder to solve”
& in stressful times like today, it is really relaxing to know that the leaders of the free world know what they are doing. Oh, wait... :/
#IRGC deputy head: diplomacy will not help Iran. Resistance is the only way forward. Iran's enemies are not interested in a military confrontation Tehran, but rather to isolate it economically. Europe cannot save the #JCPOA
And @AvigdorLiberman got really pissed off yesterday. The result is telling...
#BREAKING: Syrian air defense systems shot down more than half of the Israeli missiles last night - Russian MoD via @Reuters
More from the Russian MoD: 28 Israeli jets participated in the airstrikes in Syria. A total of 60 missiles launched - 10 of them were surface-to-surface missiles
BTW the Iran-Assad version is that any rockets launched towards Israel were by Assad's forces. The Iranians actually deny they have any military presence in Syria
#BREAKING Israeli strikes on Syria killed at least 23 fighters - @syriahr via @AFP
More: at least 18 "non-Syrian allies" among the fighters killed in the Israeli airstrikes - @syriahr
And the Iranian denial
UK PM @theresa_may has condemned Iran's attack on Israeli military positions and has called on Iran to refrain from any further attacks - @SkyNews
#Breaking: "Europe can no longer rely on the United States to protect it" - German Chancellor Angela Merkel via @AFP
#BREAKING: Assad army statement: we intercepted many of the Israeli missiles launched at us in the latest aggression. 3 killed & 2 wounded in the attack
Russia's Lavrov says remaining signatories working together to find ways to preserve Iran deal (via @aawsat_eng).
Notice how Putin is enjoying improved relations with the EU even though his forces still occupy a country in Europe - all thanks to @realDonaldTrump
& this funny guy here uses old photos as "proof" that Israel is lying about what happened last night.
Those pro-Assad tweeps are even less reliable than @IDFSpokesperson
Last night there were unconfirmed reports of another Israeli airstrike in Syria BEFORE the Iranian alleged rocket barrage at Israel. Now the @nytimes writes: "The barrage came after an apparent Israeli missile strike against a village in the Syrian Golan Heights late Wednesday"
A theory: Israeli intel identified preparations for attack on Israeli-held territory; Israeli air force acted to prevent it; this time they didn't manage to take out all rockets aimed at Israel. 20 rockets fired towards Israel & @IAFsite "went to town" on Iranian targets in Syria
#update: British Foreign Secretary @BorisJohnson condemned the Iranian rocket attack against Israeli forces and urged Tehran to refrain from any further actions that would destabilize the region - via @aawsat_eng
RE:#normalization: #Bahrein FM expresses support for the Israeli "right to defend itself from Iranian aggression" - via @kaisos1987
And photos of some of the casualties in the Israeli airstrike
You know, Lavrov just said that the "escalation between Israel and Iran" is a "rather alarming trend" (via @dpa). But somehow I think that the Russians are rather pleased with the Israeli actions to limit the Iranian presence in Syria (as long as it doesn't threaten Assad)
#Breaking 1st American response to the events in Syria last night: White House condemns Iran after rocket attack on Golan Heights, 'strongly supports' Israel's right to self-defense (via @AP)
I'm quoted on Fars (accurately I hope)
#update: as a result of the tension along the Syrian border, Israelis cancel vacations in northern Israel. Some hotels (but not all) report high % of cancellations…
#update: @netanyahu commented on the airstrikes: "Iran crossed a red line. And we responded accordingly... The international community must act to stop the entrenchment of the Iranian Quds force in Syria. We must unite to cut its evil arms spreading there & everywhere" -via @ynet
And here is the @haaretzcom explainer on the #IRGC elite Quds force…
Isreali intelligence estimates chances for wider conflict with Iran in Syria is low right now, but the army is still on high alert & there's a fear of Iranian orchestrated attack on an Israeli target abroad - Amos Harel…
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