UPDATE-It Was't a Convoy it was a military research center near Damascus, Syria's military command said, denying reports that the planes had struck a convoy carrying weapons from Syria to Lebanon.Two people were killed and five wounded in the attack on the site in Jamraya, which it described as one of a number of "scientific research centers aimed at raising the level of resistance and self-defense".
The hints began to leak last week, the news began to come out very early this morning and the IDF (as usual) is saying "what airstrike?"
Israel conducted an airstrike just inside Syrian territory on a convoy of Trucks heading toward Lebanon U.S. and regional officials said Wednesday. According to the Associated Press
The regional officials said Israel had been planning in the days leading up to the airstrike to hit a shipment of weapons bound for the Islamist militant group Hezbollah in Lebanon. They said the shipment included sophisticated, Russian-made SA-17 anti-aircraft missiles, which would be strategically "game-changing" in the hands of Hezbollah.Note to the AP there is no Militant group called Hezbollah, there is only a terrorist group called Hezbollah.
The move is not unexpected, for the past two weeks PM Netanyahu had been warning Syria about its chemical weapons. Last week some of my Israeli contacts informed my that the IDF was moving some of its Iron Dome missile batteries to the northern part of the country an indication that "something" was up.
Hezbollah, like Hamas and even Fatah has committed to Israel's destruction and gone to war against the Jewish state in the past.
Brig. Gen. (ret.) Amnon Sofrin had a meeting with reporters this morning (before the reports of an airstrike) and outlined what could be the reasons for today's actions.
"Hezbollah. Because first of all they possess the launchers and the missiles, and they can mount a chemical warhead on top of one of the missiles, something that the Salafists in Syria doesn’t have so far. So the main concern so far is Hezbollah."Early this morning there were reports of Israeli planes flying over Lebanese territory, followed by unconfirmed reports of some sort of airstrike,
"Should Assad decide his regime is at its end, he could think, 'If I go down and I leave my chair, at least one of the heritage I will leave will be that Hezbollah will have capability to hit Israel very bad. Is it something that you can rule out, I can't.”
"The Syrians have been transferring a lot of new weapons systems to [Hezbollah]... It began when Hafez Assad was alive... but he limited the amount and the types of weapons systems transferred to Hezbollah."
"If we fail to prevent... (inaudible) from Syria to Hezbollah, I mean chemical warheads, then we have to build up a new equation of deterrence against Hezbollah and to make it clear to Hezbollah that if you are going to make any attempt to even think about using it, the price will be very very high and very painful."
A senior Lebanese security official said there were no Israeli airstrikes inside Lebanese territory. Asked whether it could have been along the border on the Syrian side, he said that that could not be confirmed as it was out of his area of operations.
He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.
A Lebanese army statement said the last of the sorties took place at 2 a.m. local time Wednesday. It said four warplanes which flew in over the southernmost coastal town of Naqoura hovered for several hours over villages in southern Lebanon before leaving Lebanese airspace.Because of the Syrian WMD danger:
The Israel Postal Serivce reported Wednesday that more Israelis are updating their gas masks and ABC kits. In fact, the number of Israelis changing their nonconventional warfare protection kits has nearly tripled over the past month.Imagine having to own personal gas masks for each member of your family --and having to update them constantly. That is the danger Israeli citizens face each and every day.
The public demand can be attributed to recent upheaval in Syria and the alarming possibility that the regime's arsenal of nonconventional weapons may find its way to Hezbollah, as was implied by IAF Chief Maj.-Gen. Amir Eshel Tuesday. "Syria is undergoing tectonic changes. Given its massive arsenals, Israel may find itself dealing with nonconventional weapons on its borders," Eshel said.