Iran Continues Entrenchment Efforts in Syria

(Institute for National Security Studies-Tel Aviv University) Col. (ret.) Dr. Ephraim Kam - The Iranians have invested great efforts to build a stronghold of influence in the Syrian theater that will fortify the Shiite axis from Iran to Lebanon and provide Iran with access to the Mediterranean Sea. From the perspective of the Iranian regime, Syria serves as a forward defensive line. It is important to Iran to maintain military forces there - most are Shiite militias under Iranian command. No less important, the stronghold is meant to help create an additional front against Israel from the direction of the Golan Heights and to strengthen Hizbullah by improving its large missile arsenal. The continued Israeli air strikes in Syria against Iranian/Shiite targets show that Iran is continuing its military entrenchment efforts there. Iran's determination can also be seen in the increased activity of the Revolutionary Guard and the Shiite militias in the fighting in the Idlib region since early 2020, and the ongoing attacks by Iraqi Shiite militias associated with Iran against American bases in Iraq. The writer, who served in the Research Division of IDF Military Intelligence, is Deputy Director of INSS.

2020-05-11 00:00:00

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