Israel secretly coordinates with USA before Syrian air strikes

The U.S. has previously played down any involvement or knowledge of Israeli strikes in Syria.

By Adina Katz, World Israel News

The Israeli air force coordinates with the American military before carrying out airstrikes on Iranian assets in Syria, according to a report from the Wall Street Journal.

Anonymous American military and intelligence officials told the Journal that Jerusalem regularly informs and consults with the Pentagon before launching attacks, particularly in eastern Syria.

It’s a “well-developed and deliberate process,” one official told the outlet.

The report indicated that the area around the American Al-Tanf military base, strategically located in far east Syria adjacent to its borders with Iraq and Jordan, serves as a critical focus point for coordination with Israel.

The U.S. is concerned that the Israeli strikes could potentially disrupt American operations against Islamic State in the area. The coordination between the two military forces originally began in 2017, and the report indicated that Israel has agreed to change several of its strikes in proximity to Al-Tanf due to American objections.

The report stressed that the U.S. is takes great care not to be too closely associated with Israeli strikes on Iranian proxies.

Iranian drones struck Al-Tanf in October in retaliation for Israeli air strikes which Tehran said were backed by the U.S. Most of the 200 American troops stationed at the base were evacuated just hours before the strike after being tipped off by Israeli intelligence.

“There is tacit American support for the Israelis acting to blunt the Iranians’ efforts to spread weapons around and build their leverage throughout the region,” Dennis Ross, a former senior adviser on the Middle East to multiple U.S. presidents, told the Journal. “But there has also been a consistent hesitancy about wanting any fingerprints on this.”

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“It would be irresponsible if there was not deconfliction and coordination because of the risk that we could have an inadvertent problem,” Ross added.

According to the Journal, one time that the U.S. requested Israel to revise a strike was in 2019 on the day American forces killed ISIS head Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

Although Russia, a staunch ally of embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, has de facto control over the country’s air space, the U.S. has previously played down any involvement or knowledge of Israeli strikes in Syria.