Last Saturday (February 10, 2018) Iran’s Islamic Republic resumed its provocation of Israel by sending a drone over Israeli territory. It was answered by force as expected. An Israeli Apache Helicopter shot down the drone (it has not been verified whether the drone was armed or not) over northern Israel. Iran’s involvement in Syria, including the deployment of Iran-backed Shiite militias, near Israel’s Golan Heights, has alarmed Israel. Israel has accused Iran of building precision-guided missile factories for Hezbollah in Lebanon. As Iran and its sponsored Shiite militias, including the Lebanese Hezbollah, continue to encroach on Israel’s border, Jerusalem has vowed to defend its territory and its people. A year ago, Israel’s missile defense batteries intercepted and destroyed several Iranian built drones used by Hezbollah to penetrate Israel’s airspace from Syria. Saturday, Israeli fighter jets were able to hit and destroy the aerial defense system around Damascus that Russia helped to build.
In retaliation over Iran’s drone attack, eight Israeli F-16 Fighter jets attacked numerous military targets inside Syria, including an airfield near Palmyra called T-4 base, where the drone originated. One of the F-16 fighter jets was damaged during the attack while on the way back from the operation inside Syria. Its two pilots managed to parachute down over Israeli territory. The F-16, which was abandoned by the pilots, crashed inside Israeli territory. One of the pilots was wounded, but is expected to fully recover. The Syrian and Iranian media and government spokespeople celebrated the “downing” of the Israeli F-16 as a major accomplishment. Following the damage to the Israeli Fighter jet, a squadron of Israeli F-16’s returned to Syria and wiped out the Syrian/Iranian air-defense system throughout the Assad dominated Syria.
Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared on Sunday (February 11, 2018) that “Yesterday we dealt severe blows to the Iranian and Syrian forces. We made it unequivocally clear to everyone that our rules have not changed one bit. We will continue to strike at every attempt to strike at us. This has been our policy and it will remain our policy.” Yoav Galant, retired former army general, Cabinet Minister, and a member of Netanyahu’s Security Cabinet, told the Associated Press that “we do not just talk, we act.” Galant, a former IDF Deputy Chief of Staff, added, “I think that the Syrians now understand the fact that hosting the Iranians on Syrian soil harms them.” Israel’s Intelligence Minister Israel Katz told Army Radio that “They and we know that we hit, and it will take them some time to digest, understand, and ask how Israel knew how to hit those sites (a reference to the air-defense systems). These were concealed sites and we have intelligence agencies and the ability to know everything that is going on there, and yesterday we proved it.”
According to Arab News (February 11, 2018), Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani, addressing a flag-waving crowd at the central Tehran’s Azadi Square, said that “They (a reference to the U.S. and Israel) wanted to create tension in the region…they wanted to divide Iraq, Syria…They wanted to create long-term chaos in Lebanon but…with our help their policies failed.” For the Iranian-Shiite coalition, this day of fighting (Saturday, February 10, 2018) led to what Hezbollah has called “a new strategic era.”
In seven years of Iranian involvement on behalf of the Assad regime in the Syrian civil war, it was able to show a number of solid achievements, including saving the Alawite-led (a syncretic sect of the Twelver branch of Shiite Islam) Assad regime from total collapse. Tehran, with Russian help, solidified Assad’s rule (but as their own puppet), and the Assad regime now controls two-thirds of Syria’s territory. It is at this point that the Islamic Republic of Iran intends to change the balance of power on the Syrian-Israeli border. The Iranians took advantage of the chaos inside Syria to build up military assets that would target Israel, while at the same time, providing advanced weaponry to Hezbollah in Lebanon.
Iran is seeking to establish the Shiite Crescent or a land corridor from Iran through Iraq and Syria, to the Mediterranean Sea. Even more important for the Tehran regime is to have a permanent presence and military bases on Syrian soil. Now that it has consolidated its presence in Syria, Iran has turned its focus on the last obstacle that stands in its way to achieve its ultimate goal of becoming the regional hegemon – Israel.
Throughout the Syrian civil-war, Israel stayed largely out of it. Israel did however launch occasional airstrikes on weapon convoys headed from Iran to the Hezbollah terror group. In recent months though, Israel turned its attention to military sites suspected of hosting Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), and Shiite militias recruited by Iran from Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon, and Yemen, being too close to its borders.
To sum up the effects of Israel’s operation, on February 10, 2018 Iran suffered casualties from the Israeli assault, as did the Syrian army. Israel managed to destroy a large number of Syrian anti-aircraft batteries, mainly SA-5 and SA-17 missiles, including some that were just received by Syria. In addition, the Israeli raid destroyed a Syrian radar installation upon which the Syria’s air defense depend on. According to a statement by the IDF, this was the most painful blow against Syria’s air defense system since the First Lebanon War in 1982. When the smoke finally cleared over this day of fighting, each of the sides could have claimed a heroic victory, as well as a loss of assets. Israel lost one of its fighter jets and now finds itself susceptible to Iranian penetration. Iran paid a price for violating Israeli sovereignty but the Assad regime paid the heaviest price for its participation in the incident.
Insofar as Israel’s defense policy is concerned, being surrounded by Iranian IRGC troops and Hezbollah forces in Lebanon and on its Golan Heights border with Syria, is intolerable and must not stand. The Iranians are not necessarily seeking a full-scale war with Israel at this time. They will be content to change the existing equation, by forcing Israel to limit or stop its operations in Syria. Israel, for its part, must prove the effectiveness of its deterrent power, by demonstrating to Bashar Assad that any attempt by Iran and its clients to deter Israel from acting in self-defense would exact a heavy price. This comes in direct conflict with Iran’s schemes to surround Israel with potential missile batteries that could reach all points inside Israel. Israel’s natural reaction to these irreconcilable Iranian threats might eventually lead to a war between these two Middle Eastern powers.
The Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration — which seeks to criminalize criticism of migration — is nothing more or less than a dangerous effort to weaken national borders, to normalize mass migration, to blur the line between legal and illegal immigration, and to bolster the idea that people claiming to be refugees enjoy a panoply of rights in countries where they have never before set foot.
One thing about the agreement, in any event, is irrefutable: almost nobody in the Western world has been clamoring for this. It is, quite simply, a project of the globalist elites. It is a UN power-grab.
The waterfront in the Chilean city of Valdivia. Photo: Arvid Puschnig via Wikimedia Commons.
Top Jewish groups have welcomed a Chilean government decision made earlier this week to ban municipalities across the country from boycotting Israel.
The ruling — issued by the Comptroller General of Chile – stemmed from a complaint filed by the Chilean Jewish community over a move of the Valdivia municipality to ban the city from signing contracts with Israel-linked companies.
Spurred by Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman’s resignation and the realization that elections will likely be moved to early 2019, the leaders of the Druze community are determined to fight against the Nationality Law.
Leaders from the Druze minority and others take part in a rally to protest the Jewish nation-state law in Rabin Square in Tel Aviv, Israel, Aug. 4, 2018
It certainly seems like Israel is headed toward early elections. Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman, who resigned Nov. 14, and Education Minister Naftali Bennett were both part of the current right-wing government of Benjamin Netanyahu, competing over which of them was its most right-wing member
Israel has started uncovering and destroying Hezbollah’s attack tunnels under the Lebanese border, but destroying the group’s ambitious precision missile project will be much more difficult.
The Israel Defense Forces placed a camera into Hezbollah’s secret cross-border attack tunnel before sunrise on Dec. 4. They pushed it into the Lebanese side, under the Blue Line that separates the two countries. At dawn, two Hezbollah operatives reached the spot on their morning rounds. In the video disseminated by the IDF on Tuesday evening, one of the operatives is seen approaching the camera with suspicion. He stuck his nose in its direction and started to sniff around until something exploded in his face and he ran back the way he’d comVisibilitye.
The timing of Operation Northern Shield, to destroy Hezbollah tunnels leading from Lebanon into Israel, suggests that considerations other than security were behind the decision to launch it.
An Israeli commando from Yahalom, an engineering unit, takes part in a tunnel-hunting drill near Tel Aviv, March 7, 2012.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivered a speech to Likud activists on Dec. 2 that was both defensive and combative toward law enforcement authorities. He complained about the supposedly suspicious timing of the police announcement recommending his indictment for taking bribes in Case 4000, coming as it did one day before Police Commissioner Roni Alsheikh concluded his term in office.
This week, for the first time, Israel made public its discovery of the tunnel constructed by Hezbollah and reaching into Israel’s sovereign territory. This brought to an end a long period during which a large number of Israelis living in communities adjacent to the Lebanese border reported hearing sounds of digging as well as feeling tremors in the walls of their homes.
Attack tunnels are intended to allow for significant numbers of armed infantry bearing weapons, artillery and supplies, to traverse them within a minimal time span, avoiding Israeli lookouts and thereby gaining the element of surprise.
Last Saturday, Iran’s “moderate” President Hassan Rouhani called Israel “a cancerous tumor” in a speech at the regime’s annual Islamic Unity Conference.
Rouhani’s fellow speakers included deputy Hezbollah chief Naim Qassem and Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh. Both terror bosses called for the destruction of the “cancerous tumor.”
With the predictability of a Swiss clock, the Europeans rushed to condemn Rouhani. The EU in Brussels condemned Rouhani. The German Foreign Ministry condemned Rouhani. And so on and so forth.
We could have done without their statements.
It was clear that with the onset of Operation Northern Shield—meant to neutralize terror tunnels Hezbollah has constructed along the Israel-Lebanon border—some would call it a public relations stunt by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Those who believe the timing of the police’s recommendations in Case 4000—announced on the last day of Roni Alsheikh’s tenure as the police commissioner—was reasonable, somehow complain about the timing of the operation.
On Sunday evening, December 2, the people of Sderot, Israel – a town located a mere kilometer from the Gaza border – gathered to light the first candle of the town’s menorah to commemorate the first day of Hanukkah. Jews around the world celebrate this holiday, which marks the time some two millennia ago when the Jews regained control of Jerusalem and rededicated the Second Temple.
What makes the candle lighting in Sderot worth mentioning is the fact that it is particularly symbolic of how the Jewish spirit looks for ways to turn tragedy into triumph.
This is obviously a short-lived honeymoon that will end the day after the UN General Assembly vote on the anti-Hamas resolution. The morning after the vote, Abbas will wake up to the realization that Hamas was a strange bedfellow indeed.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s hatred of Hamas is far from secret. But Abbas is now defending Hamas because he despises the Trump administration, which has sponsored a UN draft resolution that condemns Hamas. Pictured: Abbas (right) meets with Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh on May 30, 2007 in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Abu Askar/PPO via Getty Images)