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19 March 2017


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The Twisted Genius

I saw Liberman threatened to destroy Syrian air defense system in response to this incident. A former general and Zionist Union member of the Knesset, Eyal Ben-Reuven, said Russia’s reaction was a major shift in Moscow’s Syria policy. It's a good thing the Russian-Syrian message was as subtle as it was. If the message was any more vigorous, the Israelis would have no choice but to start shooting at everything in sight. When your policy and national ego is based on a fable of unchallengeable superiority, even a subtle challenge appears to be a real kick in the national nuts.


Well, that makes things a lot more interesting.

I'm not so sure about the intent to assist IS considering this was only one sortie of 4 aircraft (according to the Syrians). I'm skeptical that one strike would be sufficient to significantly change the outcome of the conflict around Palmyra one way or another.

What's also interesting is that the US coalition conducted 1 airstrike near Palmyra that same day:


Based on CENTCOM press releases, this was the first coalition strike in the Palmyra area since March 3rd.

Meanwhile Russian and Syrian air activity is high near Palmyra as they support the ground forces in anti-IS operations.

I think this ties back to Netanyahu Russia visit. One of the reported purposes was to reaffirm Israel's military coordination with Russia in the region generally and Syria specifically. I think it's unlikely Israel would coordinate this strike with the Russians, so that could be the reason the Israeli ambassador was summoned afterward.

It's also very unusual for Israeli officials to comment on these operations, but Israeli officials have been unusually blunt about this one. Yisrael Katz, minister for transportation, told Israel's Channel 10 that "...our message is clear, we will not be complacent with a Syrian policy that arms Hezbollah." He added: "the fact that the incident developed into a situation where Israel claimed responsibility and the Syrians responded is significant."


Doesn't really sound too good, does it?
OTOH, as some french joker says:
"There is nothing that a kick in the balls or a pressure on reset won't solve."


Syria claims to have downed 2 IAF jets (separate incidents)
If these claims are removed,....Syria has only downed 1 Turk F4 Reece
And a few drones,....for 6 yrs

The Beaver

May be Bibi is hoping that, should Russia strikes down one of IDF planes, Jared and AIPAC would be forced to get the Pres. Trump and Gen Mattis to go after Russia (indirectly against Iran and Hizb'Allah). He wants to be a S*t disturber

Ishmael Zechariah

Col. Lang, SST;
I would have been more impressed had the izzies repeated the attack. They have plenty of planes and ordnance, the distance is short, and there seem to be plenty of targets around. Let us see what next week brings.
Ishmael Zechariah

Peter AU

Palmyra/Deir Ezzor. What is so important about this area? The US/coalition strike on Deir Ezzor, the constant suicidal attacks by ISIS even when loosing ground everywhere else, and now the Israeli strike?

Babak Makkinejad

Putin wants a quiet neighborhood.

Israelis will comply with that wish.

different clue

Putin may not have the loud fast power to make Bibi afraid, but he may have slow quiet power to freeze Bibi in place. If so, that would be power indeed.


palmyra/dire es sore is strategically central to breaking the shia crescent and creating an american/sunni protectorate in eastern Syria.

robt willmann

Peter AU,

If you draw a line from Palmyra (Tadmur) to Deir Ez Zor (Dayr az Zawr), and then a line straight east to the border with Iraq, and then down along the Iraq border to a little ways past the intersection of the Euphrates River and the Iraq border, you will have an area of oil and gas pipelines and oil and gas fields. This is a critically important area.

A while back I mentioned that I was repeating myself so much about the need to take back that area that I was starting to sound like the crazy uncle in the attic. But that is always easier said than done, with the requirement of supplies, equipment, and logistics, and the harsh reality of combat.

There are also oil and gas fields to the north of Palmyra and going northeast of it to the Euphrates River.

This whole area is south of Raqqah and the mishmash of groups and ISIS involved from Raqqa on north toward Turkey. Syria has an opportunity to clear this extremely important area and get control of it outside of the problem of dealing with the Kurds, etc., further north.


"Israel said to strike Syria for second time in 24 hours, amid threats from Damascus
Unconfirmed reports indicate jets hit Hezbollah weapons convoy, military targets, hours after drone strike in Syrian Golan; Syria UN envoy says retaliatory missile launches during Friday raid a ‘game-changer’"


"Israeli airstrike in Syrian Golan said to kill pro-Assad fighter
IDF refuses to confirm reported drone strike near Quneitra, as tensions between Jerusalem and Damascus ratchet up"


Even with Israel having the entire power of the US military at it's finger tips, giving the finger to Russia just doesn't seem like a smart idea.

But what I really suspect is going on here is this. For at least the last 3 elections Netanahu has run i,n he has started a war for the election to inflate his numbers. Last time it was the Gaza war he started by shooting up the West Bank. Before that it was a few rounds with Hezbollah and before that it was droning the Hamas leader that was enforcing the peace in Gaza. All timed conveniently for the elections.

But Israel isn't in an election you say, well keep a few things in mind. One of the opposition parties is polling as high as Likud is. Netanyahu has been questioned by the police over various things and is likely to be indited soon. And then there is this.




"Even with Israel having the entire power of the US military at it's finger tips," that is not true and it has never been true. Poliical influence yes, ability to command our armed forces? Never! pl


"Well, pilgrims, it does not seem that the "subtle message" made much of an impression in the land of Zion. "

Izi's squealing, is a reflection of their terrorists ISIS, are on the loosing side. Isis'll squeal even louder.

Babak Makkinejad

I do not find that scenario credible.

Iran does not need a land bridge through the Syrian Desert.


Russia Insider has copied a paywall protected Haaretz article here:

The Israeli is depicting the incident as an unpredictable regime trying to slip the collar of their Russian handlers, who fundamentally take Israel's 'concerns' seriously.

If this were so, why was Israel's ambassador summoned in Moscow?



And why would the US want to protect an area in eastern Syria? For the oil and gas? We are drowning in the stuff. For the Saudis? Oh, come on! pl


No word on the fate of the pilot? Odd given past history.


If I may suggest, Colonel, somebody might just want to show everybody who's boss then get stuck trying to figure out a strategic reason? Stupidity happens.


Maybe an elegant solution for Russia would be to test some ECM on Israeli targeting systems.

Peter AU

Commodities - control thereof. Revenue for future Sunni/Kurd state/ remove revenue from future Syrian state.
Many in power and positions of influence in the US do not seem to share your principles pl.



Who ever you call or write keep repeating that Israel supports ISIS because they ARE!!

If they try to defend this, call them terrorist supporters too.



Well, well. Israel may have to go it alone. I hope they pay the price ALONE.



Hmmm? From the linked context:

Israel-Syria Clash: With Missile Fire, Assad Is Trying to Change the Rules of the Game

Israel has avoided directly commenting on airstrikes in Syria. Until now.
...Presumably the Syrian anti-aircraft salvo was a signal to Israel that the regime’s policy of restraint in the face of the airstrikes will not remain as it was. President Bashar Assad’s recent successes – first and foremost the conquest of Aleppo – have seemingly increased the dictator’s confidence. Israel will have to decide whether the operational need – to thwart advanced weapons shipments to Hezbollah – also justifies the possible risk of the downing of an Israeli fighter jet and a broader conflict developing with Syria.

There is an interesting question as to whether the aircraft detection radar system was deployed by Israel’s new great friend, Russia, precisely one week after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu returned from Moscow after yet another successful visit to see President Vladimir Putin.

One can imagine that the intelligence community will also be interested to learn whether the Syrian decision to fire back was coordinated with Assad’s collaborators and partners: Russia, Iran and Hezbollah.....
Amos Harel, March 20



If you mean the elected government as represented by the civilian chain of command in the Executive Branch, then the answer is altogether. They tell you to fight, you fight. They tell you to stop, you stop. they give you money and equipment, you use it. The armed forces of the US are altogether subordinate to the civilian government. That does not mean that a certain amount of passive-aggressive behavior does not take place. pl

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