Protecting Israel's Interests in Syria

(Ha'aretz) Amos Harel - This week Assad's forces in Syria completed their takeover of Sheikh Maskin, on the main road from Daraa in southern Syria to Damascus. The ground operation was preceded by a few days of heavy aerial bombings by Russian jets, only about 20 km. from Israel's border on the Golan Heights. Major efforts are now going into maintaining the coordination apparatus between Israel and Russia to prevent misunderstandings. Alongside the red lines that Jerusalem has drawn in Syria - preventing firing into Israeli territory and foiling attempts to smuggle advanced weaponry from Syria to Hizbullah in Lebanon - there are other interests that Israel wants to protect: limiting the presence of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards near Israel's border, preventing any more ISIS fighters from approaching the border (about 600 members of a group identified with ISIS, the Yarmouk Martyrs Brigade, are in an enclave in the southern Golan), and preventing a massacre of Druze in Syria.

2016-01-29 00:00:00

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