Iranian Drone Entered Israeli Airspace

As the war in Syria winds down, Iran is shifting  its emphasis toward Israel.  Iran, through its proxy Hezbollah, can now use resources (Iran deal billions) and forces that were being used in Syria against Israel.

The peaceful and quiet skies that so often accompany Shabbat in the Holy Land were shattered by the infiltration of enemy aircraft into Israeli territory.

The aircraft, an Iranian drone that was launched from a Syrian base located near the ancient city of Palmyra in the Homs desert,  approached Israel in the wee hours of the morning. It successfully entered Israeli airspace and flew for over a minute before it was intercepted near the Sea of Galilee by the Israeli Air Force (IAF).  BreakingIsraelNews

After the Iranian drone was shot down near the Sea of Galilee.  This triggered an immediate Israeli military response. Israeli planes were sent to destroy the command center piloting the drone.  An  Israeli fighter was jet shot down with Syrian missile (crashed after its two-member crew ejected – one taken to the hospital).  Israel launched a devastating aerial assault in Syria.

The Israel Air Force hadn’t lost a fighter jet to enemy fire in 34 years, until Saturday, when Iranian and Syrian forces downed an Israeli F-16 over the Galilee.

The plane in question was part of a strike force on a retaliatory mission into Syria after an Iranian drone entered Israeli airspace during the early morning hours.

The drone was promptly shot down, and then a squadron of Israeli fighters entered Syria to destroy the command center from which the infiltrator had been remotely piloted.

The Israeli planes faced overwhelming anti-aircraft fire. The downed F-16 was hit either directly by an Iranian-supplied Syrian missile, or by shrapnel resulting from an explosive anti-aircraft shell.

Either way, the injured pilots managed to return to Israeli airspace before crashing near a kibbutz in the Jezreel Valley.

That sparked a full day of devastating Israeli aerial assaults on Iranian and Syrian military installations.

According to IDF officials, four Iranian and eight Syrian bases were hit, including Syria’s main command and control bunker.  Many of those installations were covert in nature. IsraelToday

Saturday’s violence was the worst military confrontation on Israel’s northern border since the 2006 Lebanon war, and risked putting the Jewish state and Iran on a collision course, former military intelligence chief Amos Yadlin said on a conference call Saturday night. The Israeli military said it struck 12 targets in Syria, including four belonging to Iran, in a “large-scale attack.”

“As long as Iran continues building its military presence in Syria, they’re definitely bringing the region closer to an escalation,” Conricus said. “We don’t think a war is in our interest, not the IDF’s and not the State of Israel’s interest, and that’s why we’re not looking to escalate the situation.” StarsAndStrips

PM Netanyahu:

“Yesterday we dealt a serious blow to the armies of Iran and Syria,” Netanyahu told ministers at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting. “We made it unequivocally clear to everyone that our rules of engagement have not changed in any way.”

“We will continue to strike back at any attempt to harm us,” Netanyahu said,  according to a statement. “This has been our policy and will remain our policy.” Times OfIsrael