Israel has been closely watching changes in the region and Syria may be a key to understanding some of the choices that now face Israel, its partners in the US and the region, as well as Iran and Russia. What this means is that a new phase may be approaching.

To understand the new possibilities and challenges, it is worth considering several issues. First of all, Israel has been carrying on what is called a “campaign between the wars” – an attempt to prevent Iranian entrenchment in Syria.
In August 2017, reports said that Israel had struck arms convoys on their way to Hezbollah around 100 times. By January 2019, outgoing IDF chief of staff Gadi Eizenkot said that Israel had struck Iranian targets in Syria thousands of times. These are the parameters of the campaign to prevent Iranian entrenchment. US support for Israel’s airstrikes and campaign increased during the Trump administration.

In the report released by the lead inspector general of the United States covering Operation Inherent Resolve from July to October 2019, the US noted the airstrikes and implications.
“US CENTCOM [Central Command] assessed that Iranian backed forces in Syria might look to target US military personnel or its partner forces in Syria, if they view the US as complicit in Israeli strikes on its forces in Syria,” the report said. READ MORE

Israel’s Syria policy could be coming to new crossroads - analysis

Josh Toupos

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