0 $
2,500 $
5,000 $
1,179 $
9 DAYS LEFT TO COLLECT SOUTHFRONT'S MONTHLY BUDGET

More Reckless Behavior by Israel: Netanyahu Plays by His Own Rules

Donate

Written by Philip M. Giraldi; Originally appeared on strategic-culture.org

As has become the normal practice, Christmas Day’s air raid by Israel directed against targets near Damascus was largely ignored by the US media. Given the fact that Israel has bombed Syria more than two hundred times, the attack itself, which wounded three soldiers at a warehouse, was not particularly notable. But what was significant was the fact that it was the second time that Israel has used other planes to mask the approach of its own warplanes to the target. On this occasion, the masks consisted of two civilian airliners making their approaches to the airports in Beirut and Damascus. Fortunately, the Syrian Arab Air Defense Forces made the decision to delay the deployment of surface-to-air missiles and electronic jamming “to prevent a tragedy” and air traffic control was able to divert one of the passenger jets landing at Damascus to the reserve military airport in Khmeimim in southern Latakia.

More Reckless Behavior by Israel: Netanyahu Plays by His Own Rules

Syrian anti-aircraft crews did manage to intercept and shoot down fourteen of the sixteen incoming missiles that were launched by six Israeli F-16 warplanes using US-made GPS-guided GBU-39 Small Diameter Bombs (SDBs). If the Syrian air defenses had been more reckless and gone after the F-16s themselves, they might have hit an airliner by mistake and hundreds of lives could have been lost.

The Russian Ministry of Defense, which was able to reconstruct the attack from radar imaging, condemned the incident, stating that “Provocative acts by the Israeli Air Force endangered two passenger jets when six of their F-16s carried out airstrikes on Syria from Lebanese airspace.” The terse Russian announcement reveals that beyond endangering hundreds of civilians, Israel had committed several war crimes in its action, which the Israeli government claimed was intended to destroy a shipment of Iranian-made Fajir-5 rockets, which was allegedly on its way to Hezbollah.

As Israel is not at war with Iran or Syria or Lebanon and it persists in attacking targets in Syria based on its own perception of threats, it meets the United Nations definition of an aggressor. And its violation of Lebanese airspace to stage the attack on Syria was also an act of aggression. Both would normally be condemned in the UN Security Council but for the American veto protecting Israel.

Analysts have confirmed that the Israelis carried out the strikes in Syria by deliberately using scheduled airline departures and arrivals as cover to foil the improved and upgraded Syrian air defenses. Security sources in the region now believe that any civilian flights entering or leaving Damascus or Beirut are potentially in danger due to the Israeli tactics, which clearly accept endangering civilians to mask the movements of the warplanes.

The Israelis also used a Russian intelligence plane as a mask off the coast of Syria back in September, with fatal results for the crew after Syrian air defenses responded to the attack. Israel, of course, claimed innocence, insisting that it was the Syrians who shot down the Russian aircraft while the Israeli jets were legitimately targeting a Syrian army facility “from which weapons-manufacturing systems were supposed to be transferred to Iran and Hezbollah.”

The Russian aircraft was returning to base after a mission over the Mediterranean off the Syrian coast monitoring the activities of a French warship and at least one British RAF plane. As a large and relatively slow propeller-driven aircraft on a routine intelligence-gathering mission, the Ilyushin-20 had no reason to conceal its presence. It was apparently preparing to land at its airbase at Khmeimim when the incident took place.

Syrian air defenses were on high alert because Israel had attacked targets near Damascus on the previous day, including a Boeing 747 on the ground that Israel claimed to be transporting weapons.

The Israelis used four F-16 fighter-bombers to stage the surprise night attack targeting sites near Latakia, close to the airbase being used by the Russians. They came in from the Mediterranean Sea using the Russian plane to mask their approach as the Ilyushin 20 would have presented a much larger radar profile for the air defenses.

The Israelis might have been expecting that the Syrians would not fire at all at the incoming planes knowing that one of them at least was being flown by their Russian allies. If that was the expectation, it proved wrong and it was indeed a Syrian S-200 ground to air missile directed by its guidance system to the larger target that brought down the plane and killed its fourteen crew members.

There was also a backstory. The Israelis and Russian military had established a hotline precisely intended to avoid accidents. Israel reportedly used the line but only one minute before the incident took place, leaving no time for the Russian plane to take evasive action.

The Russian Ministry of Defense was irate. It saw the exploitation of the intelligence plane by the Israelis as a deliberate high-risk initiative. It warned:

We consider these provocative actions by Israel as hostile. Fifteen Russian military service members have died because of the irresponsible actions of the Israeli military. This is absolutely contrary to the spirit of the Russian-Israeli partnership. We reserve the right for an adequate response.”

It’s the same old story. Israel does risky things like attacking its neighbors because it knows it will pay no price due to Washington’s support. The downing of the Russian plane and the current endangering civil aviation has created a situation that could easily escalate. What Israel is really thinking when it seeks to create anarchy all around its borders is anyone’s guess, but it is, to be sure, in no one’s interest to allow the process to continue.

Philip M. Giraldi is a former CIA counter-terrorism specialist and military intelligence officer who served nineteen years overseas in Turkey, Italy, Germany, and Spain. He was the CIA Chief of Base for the Barcelona Olympics in 1992 and was one of the first Americans to enter Afghanistan in December 2001. Phil is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a Washington-based advocacy group that seeks to encourage and promote a U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East that is consistent with American values and interests.

Donate

SouthFront

Do you like this content? Consider helping us!

  • Master Oroko

    In other news, water is wet. Israel has one of the most devious countries in the world. I doubt that will change… until they’re brought to heel.

    • so

      Nice to know that Netanyahu is the master of his own demise. It will not end well for them.

  • verner

    time for the world to say no and discontinue israel, which illegal organisation persists in its business plan based on evil and which has failed to become a viable and upstanding country and runs a concentration camp a la dachau where a slow genocide of the rightful owners of the land is executed as we speak by the illegitimate terrorist organisation called israel. and that the moronic states will use its veto on any issue concerning the illegitimate terrorist israel is a certainty but

    if a number of countries start to de-recognize israel on the ground that israel entirely has failed to honour the understanding that was reached at the time the recognition was given, an understanding that israel would be a viable and upstanding country respecting laws and human values. after some 70 years, it is obvious that israel has failed to honour such understanding and thus any country that has given a recognition can no revoke it, close its embassy and require that israel does the same.

    if at the same time all financial transactions to israel are prohibited israel will be toast in no time since israel’s existence is based on financial subsidies from abroad and where such financial aid dries up israel will meet an early demise and the people will go on to the next diaspora! my guess is that about 75 to 80 pct of the worlds population would welcome the demise of israel.

    easy as pie and the notorious moronic states can shove its veto right up a place where the sun doesn’t shine!

    • neil barron

      Since I represent 100% of the world lets start by eliminateing you.

      • verner

        nah, how would you represent 100 pct dumb-schmuck. I’ll recommend a noose in the attic for you. try to work it out dimwit!

  • Lena Jones

    Anti-gentile jews do not differentiate between military and civilian targets. They especially love mass murdering children. This is irrefutable and based totally on their actions.

    Israel must be dismantled – obviously through a war of annihilation.

  • Promitheas Apollonious

    bla bla bla. What happen to……… they hit the platforms that the planes take off from? Eventually when you keep pussy crying, screaming wolf, none ever take you seriously.

    • RichardD

      It’s still very early in the recent SADF upgrade. But every Jew war crime airstrike attack that goes unanswered is damaging Russia’s reputation, creating a credibility deficit, and jeopardizing the US withdrawal. There are reports of the upgrades efficacy, but until they come from reputable sources, they’re highly questionable:

      “Syrian S300 units spotted several warplanes in “stealth” mode, which had violated Syrian airspace by crossing several miles past the Quneitra border. A combined Syrian/Russian unit positively identified the aircraft wing as being composed of several Israeli F35 planes, flying in Syrian airspace in violating of Syrian sovereignty. Two Pantisar missiles were launched, using guidance provided by the S300 systems, and at least one plane was shot down. Details on the shot down plane are still pending; however, it appears the plane was an Israeli F35. The other missile may have damaged one or more of the other planes in the wing, as the S300 data shows that it hit its target; however it appears that only one plane was shot down and recovered over Syrian territory.”

      – Suspected Israeli F35 Shot Down By Syrian/Russian S300 Over Quneitra Border, Following Christmas Day Civilian Airline Incident By Israel –

      https://www.dailycrusader.com/2019/01/suspected-israeli-f35-shot-down-by-syrian-russian-s300-over-quneitra-border-following-christmas-day-civilian-airline-incident-by-israel/

      • Promitheas Apollonious

        if this was happening we will have hear about it and I dont mean on the net but from our people on the ground. Until this is cross referenced, I will not hold my breath or take it as a matter of fact.

  • Tommy Jensen

    Bla bla bla and so what? Same story 201 times: “Israel did it again muhaa muhaa muhaa”.

    • marhula

      are you an idiot????

  • Prince Teutonic

    SAA: Just one more time just one more time you attack us and we’ll really bring down your jets and runways… We really mean it this time…

    • Ishyrion Av

      You know… Idiots like you don’t understand the human quality to restrain himself. Everybody knows israelis are nuts. In a medical way. They suffer of dementia and schizophrenia in the same time.
      Imagine you have an insane kid in the classroom which you can’t treat because his father is insane too, waves a big gun and is in bed with the governor who is insane also. So what you do? Do not respond with the same coin, because if you do, you start a slaughter.
      Try to isolate de maniac, even if you take a punch from time to time.
      As long as your life is not really in danger and until you are ready to deal with the all chain of maniacs.
      But of course, until that time there will be monkeys in the tree yelling. But that’s a monkey business, anyway, all mouth and zero brain.

      • Prince Teutonic

        And you smart ass are like a kid who gets beaten all the time and moan to your loser friends how this time was the last time you had taken the beating and next time you will fight back and kick their ass. Just shut up and take it as a bitch you are…

  • verner

    bds-movement is a great thing, add a de-recognition movement to that and prohibit all financial transactions to israel and you’re almost home and a world where israel has ceased to exist – can it get better than that! close your tel aviv embassy and order israel to close its reciprocal embassy. let the bds do the work and cease all trades with israel, be it oranges or advanced technology for computers or weapons or or . remember israel needs the world a whole lot more than the world needs israel. close down the money spigot and israel will suffocate or dehydrate before you have time to say ‘said so nitwits’.

  • RichardD

    “What Israel is really thinking when it seeks to create anarchy all around its borders is anyone’s guess, but it is, to be sure, in no one’s interest to allow the process to continue.”

    It’s called the Yinon plan to keep the region in turmoil so that it doesn’t doesn’t unite against Israel.

  • RichardD

    There is an article, linking to an article quoting South Front on a different topic, that an F-35 was hit over Syria during the Christmas day attack and recovered inside Syria. But it looks like it’s on a CIA scam site:

    “Syrian S300 units spotted several warplanes in “stealth” mode, which had violated Syrian airspace by crossing several miles past the Quneitra border. A combined Syrian/Russian unit positively identified the aircraft wing as being composed of several Israeli F35 planes, flying in Syrian airspace in violating of Syrian sovereignty. Two Pantisar missiles were launched, using guidance provided by the S300 systems, and at least one plane was shot down. Details on the shot down plane are still pending; however, it appears the plane was an Israeli F35. The other missile may have damaged one or more of the other planes in the wing, as the S300 data shows that it hit its target; however it appears that only one plane was shot down and recovered over Syrian territory.”

    – Suspected Israeli F35 Shot Down By Syrian/Russian S300 Over Quneitra Border, Following Christmas Day Civilian Airline Incident By Israel –

    https://www.dailycrusader.com/2019/01/suspected-israeli-f35-shot-down-by-syrian-russian-s300-over-quneitra-border-following-christmas-day-civilian-airline-incident-by-israel/

  • RichardD

    “It’s the same old story. Israel does risky things like attacking its neighbors because it knows it will pay no price due to Washington’s support.”

    I would say that it’s gone beyond that to Israel does risky things because it knows that Russia won’t do anything about it. The SADF is now the closest thing to peer Russian air defense capability on the planet. And the Jews are flying circles around it and attacking Syria at will with impunity. This looks bad for Russia when these Jew planes and air bases should be sitting ducks for modern Russian equipment, if it works right.

    Everyone is watching the SADF taking down the vast majority of the ordnance being fired from these launch platforms while the launch platforms and bases are left untouched and are asking what’s the problem with this Russian equipment not taking down planes and destroying the air bases that the attacks are originating from?

  • RichardD
  • S Melanson

    This is not unusual for Israel. Israel approach is called Realism in international relations theory where reputation and international opinion take a back seat to policy objectives, particularly when involving national security. History has shown Israel rarely responsive to international opinion and ignores U.N. resolutions that conflict with security interests.

    I point out that arguments to get Putin to cancel S300 to Syria in 2013 centred on Syrian lack of expertise with such sophisticated systems and put at risk civilian aircraft in the regions crowded air space. This was effective. Now is it possible Israel was setting up the very disaster they warned about in 2013? If a commercial airliner had been shot down, it would have greatly ambarassed the Russian military and bolstered Putin for his decision not to supply the systems.

    The Russians are going to need to keep their experts closely working with Syrians in operations and decisions to launch and good thing they held off.