Click photo to download. Caption: A view of an Iron Dome anti-missile battery near the Northern Israeli town of Haifa. Israel deployed two Iron Dome batteries in the north on May 5 after reported Israeli airstrikes on a military research center near Damascus. Credit: Avishag Shaar Yashuv/Flash90.
reportedly behind the massive airstrike near Damascus, Syria in the early hours
of Sunday morning, targeting Iranian missiles bound for Hezbollah. This is the
second reported Israeli airstrike this week inside of Syria, and the third such
strike this year.
officials told the Associated Press and
Reuters that Israel has carried out the recent strikes on Iranian shipments
to the Lebanese-based terror group Hezbollah of the highly advanced missiles
known as Fateh-110s or “Conqueror” missiles.
last night’s attack, as in the previous one, what was attacked were stores of
Fateh-110 missiles that were in transit from Iran to Hezbollah,” a Western
intelligence official told Reuters on
declined to confirm the Jewish state was behind the latest strike in Syria.
“We don’t respond
to this kind of report,” an Israeli military spokeswoman said, according to Israel Hayom.
Defense Minister Danny Danon, however, hinted at Israeli involvement.
State of Israel is protecting its interests and will continue doing so. I am
not confirming or denying the reports,” Danon told Army Radio.
Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who arrived in China on Sunday, made no reference
to the strike in his weekly Sunday cabinet appearance.
the Israeli military has deployed two Iron Dome missile defense system batteries
in northern Israel, and has closed the region’s airspace.
First put into
service in by Iran in 2002, the Fateh-110s were upgraded last year with a range
of 185 miles, and are accurate within 330 feet. Late last year, the Syrian
government tested the new generation of Fateh-110s, prompting NATO to deploy
Patriot missile batteries in Turkey, according to CNN.
expressed deep concern about the Iranian-backed Lebanese terror group
Hezbollah, which it has fought several wars with, gaining control of advanced
“It is a game
changer because [the Fateh-110s] are a threat to Israel’s infrastructure and
military installations,” Uzi Rubin, a missile expert and former Israeli defense
official, told the Associated Press.
videos posted on YouTube showed a several massive explosions near the Syrian
capital. Residents near the Jamraya military base, located 10 miles from
Damascus, told Reuters that “night
turned into day.”
Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad has not made any comments on the airstrikes.
But Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal al-Mekdad called the attack on the nation’s
“research facility” a “declaration of war,” according to CNN.
Syria’s government called the attacks a “flagrant violation of international
leadership has been placed in a difficult position by the latest airstrikes. On
one hand, it does not want to look weak, especially to rebel leaders. But on
the other hand, it risks escalating a conflict with its more powerful neighbor,
Masoud Jazayeri, assistant to the Iranian chief-of-staff said Iran “will not allow the enemy (Israel) to harm the
security of the region” and that “the resistance will retaliate against the Israeli
aggression against Syria,” the Associated