IDF airstrikes in Syria a ‘warning,’ says former military intelligence chief

Yadlin tweets “significant message to all forces in the region: Iran, Hezbollah, and Syria that the restraint in the north was over.”

By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News

On the heels of Israeli airstrikes against Iranian and Syrian targets in Syria during the early hours of Wednesday morning, former IAF general and chief of military intelligence Amos Yadlin offered an analysis of Israel’s strategy via a lengthy thread on his Twitter account.

“The Iranians and Hezbollah have been trying for a long time to establish terrorist infrastructure in the Syrian part of the Golan Heights,” wrote Yadlin, executive director of Tel Aviv University’s Institute for National Security Studies.

“Tribes and militias supported by Iran and the Syrian regime are fighting there, against forces supported by Russian and the leftover rebels.”

He said that assasinated Iranian General Soleymani had “a great plan for a deep presence in the region,” which was foiled by the IAF and Israeli intelligence. However, Yadlin wrote, the Iranians are using the power vacuum in the region to launch a proxy war against Israel.

“The extensive operation tonight, which came after a long period in which Israel refrained from attacking Syria, indicates that it was not only a response to the bombing event but a significant message to all forces in the region: Iran, Hezbollah, and Syria that the restraint in the north was over,” Yadlin tweeted.

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“Finally, the action tonight is also a message to the powers and elements of the Shiite axis…the [Israeli] campaign against the Iranian regime began before the Trump administration, and will continue after it.”

He said he believes the Syrians will be slow to respond, considering that the country is in a deep economic crisis and an ongoing civil war. But, he said, the IDF should be prepared for the possibility of retaliation.

The Israeli airstrikes destroyed warehouses, military headquarters and complexes, and surface-to-air missile batteries, an IDF spokesperson confirmed.

The airstrikes came several hours after the IDF revealed that it discovered IEDs (improvised explosive devices) placed near the Israeli side of the Syrian border, in the southern Golan Heights.

Watchdog group the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) said Wednesday that the Israeli airstrikes killed 10 people.

Three of those killed were Syrian citizens, five were Iranians, and the other two either Lebanese or Iraqi.