On April 2, 2015, Israel launched an air campaign against Syria. Fighter bombers attacked areas well north of Damascus, near the Damascus airport and military units fighting Al Nusra and Islamic State forces. Some attacks were direct air support in an attempt to break up a Syrian Army offensive against supply lines that run from Israel through Jordan, the “lifeline” for ISIS in that region.
However, there was another purpose for the attacks as well. Israel is waging a surrogate war against Russia and has been for some time. The coup in the Ukraine, ostensibly planned by NATO, has its origins in an extremist Neocon “stay behind” cabal within the US Department of State. Victoria Nuland, author of the Kiev coup is the wife of John Kagan, with lifelong ties to Israeli intelligence.
The timing of the attacks is critical. This is clearly a response to Russia’s announced delivery of a long promised S300 air defense system to Iran. If Iran can’t be bombed, Russia’s other ally in the region, Syria can.
It is also timed in coordination with Saudi Arabia’s bombing attacks on Yemen. Saudi Arabia has no practical experience in air warfare and has been using Yemen to train pilots and test systems. Few of the attacks on Yemen were at military targets; this was simply bombing practice but practicing for what?
The Phony Coalition
The US – Canada coalition against ISIS, with ISIS supporters, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Qatar as members is a joke at best. With Saudi allied directly with Israel and supply lines for ISIS coming directly from coalition members Jordan, Turkey, Israel and Saudi Arabia, the 95% American air campaign against ISIS is more than disingenuous.
Then again, in recent weeks it has also been shown to be nearly non-existent, having ground to a virtual halt after the fall of Tikrit to Iraqi forces who stood in for Iranian back militias at the 11th hour. Immediately thereafter, the US air campaign stood down and ISIS redeployed units in open daylight and renewed offensives against key economic and strategic centers in Iraq.
It is more than clear that Israel is backing ISIS and Al Nusra against Syria and Iraq/Kurdistan as well. The bombing campaign is only part of it, weapons and jihadist fighters have flowed out of Israel like a river. Additionally, Israel has supplied sophisticated communications equipment, satellite surveillance and even advanced operational planning to ISIS. There is no proof that Israeli advisors are with ISIS but observation of their operational capabilities strongly supports that hypothesis.
What is clear is that we are seeing a typical Likudist revenge attack. Reeling from reverses in US relations, suffering a massive loss of prestige around the world and facing sanctions from the UN, Israel is lashing out, choosing Russia as a target and, moreover aiming at Russian allies as a direct confrontation with Putin’s Russia would quickly be the end of Mr. Netanyahu and his “American junkyard dog” on the Mediterranean.
Netanyahu sees Russia as politically vulnerable because of sanctions stemming from the Israeli planned coup against the Ukraine. That hypothesis, that the “revolution” in the Ukraine is an Israeli planned operation is now coming into focus. Their recent announcements that they plan to supply the Kiev junta with American heavy weapons is far from their first aggressive move. Israel’s ability through blackmail and bribery and their “special relationship” with the thinly veiled former Nazi regime behind Merkel’s Germany and neo-Nazi elements in Poland enabled them to stage the coup against Ukraine with virtually no risk of exposure.
Israel played directly into the virulent anti-Russian feelings dating back to World War II, a game long used by others but learned and moved up to another level by Israel.
Lebanon and Egypt
The destabilization of Syria would be a powerful blow against Russia though largely symbolic. The planned overthrow of Ukraine was meant to divest Russia of her military port on the Black Sea.
Returning Crimea, bolstering Syria and renewing relations with Egypt will keep Russian presence in the Mediterranean, something Israel and Saudi Arabia cannot allow.
Combined with an economically strengthened Iran, the first credible military threat to what a new right wing American government might represent to the Middle East is upsetting long laid plans.
A key component of the regional destabilization plan involves the destruction of Lebanon. In 2006, Israel invaded Lebanon only to be sent packing by Hezbollah. Israel is currently waging a covert war in Lebanon. One aspect of it is political. Several current political leaders in Lebanon have been accused of being paid Israeli agents, charges they are using Lebanon’s unbalanced legal system to stifle.
Additionally, the Saudi embassy in Beirut has been actively recruiting and funding terror cells to operate across Lebanon.
Israeli bombing in Syria has taken part as well, with Israeli helicopters and planes protecting ISIS infiltration routes, not near Golan in the South as Israel claims but covertly supporting moves against Lebanon in the areas north of Bekaa, where terror attacks are becoming a daily threat. Israel’s air umbrella allows terrorists attacking Lebanon to move freely inside Syria and to supply through Turkey as well.
Similarly, the Israeli Navy including their submarine force, are continually operating off Lebanon’s coast in support of special operation teams ashore.
Last week, President Obama noted that Russia could have sold S300 missiles to Iran at any time. He tone clearly indicated two things:
- The US in no way ties Iran’s right to self-defense to sanctions and
- What applies to Iran would certainly apply to Syria
Syria currently has a limited number of sophisticated air defense systems but not nearly enough to protect from continual Israeli attacks and Turkish incursions from the North. Similarly, Syria is constrained in its ability to defend itself from air attack while nearly a dozen air forces operate illegally in Syria’s air space under the auspices of the US – Canada “coalition.” The US air support that was so effective in and near Kobani has now become non-existent in the fight against ISIS but more than effective in making it impossible for Syria to protect itself from air attacks by Israel, attacks in support of ISIS and Al Nusra but moreover attacks really aimed at Russia and Iran.
Gordon Duff is a Marine combat veteran of the Vietnam War that has worked on veterans and POW issues for decades and consulted with governments challenged by security issues. He’s a senior editor and chairman of the board of Veterans Today, especially for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.