Israel launched a barrage of air strikes on 50 Iranian targets in Syria -- a massive escalation that could lead to all-out war

Israel Defence ForcesA map posted online by the Israel Defence Forces showing what they say are Iranian positions they struck. Embedded is footage from one of the strikes.
  • Israel launched dozens of strikes on Syria in a massive retaliation on Iran.
  • The Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) said fighter jets took down “dozens” of Iranian military targets.
  • IDF claimed its airstrikes hit Iranian intelligence facilities, logistic headquarters, observation posts, weapon storage facilities, and a vehicle used to launch rockets into Israeli territory.
  • The strikes represent a massive step up in the fighting between Iran and Israel.

Israel’s military launched a barrage of missile strikes on Iranian targets based in Syria early Thursday morning, a massive retaliation in an ongoing conflict between the two bitter enemies.

The Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) claimed fighter jets took down “dozens” of Iranian military targets in Syria overnight Thursday. The IDF Spokesperson’s Unit told Israel’s Channel 10 News that more than 50 targets were hit in the strike.

In a series of tweets, the army said the strikes were in response to Iranian rockets launched at IDF positions in the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights earlier that night.

Israel fighter jets armyTHOMAS COEX/AFP/Getty ImagesAn Israeli F-15 E fighter jet

The IDF included an animated video of how the military act unfolded, featuring footage reportedly from the strike.

“This Iranian aggression is another proof of the intentions behind the establishment of the Iranian regime in Syria and the threat it poses to Israel and regional stability,” it said.

The IDF said it would “not allow the Iranian threat to establish itself in Syria,” and that it would hold the Assad regime accountable for the escalation of violence within its borders.

The official IDF Spokesperson, Brigadier General Ronen Manelis, told Channel 10 that Israeli airstrikes hit Iranian intelligence facilities, logistic headquarters, observation posts, weapon storage facilities, and a vehicle used to launch rockets into Israeli territory.

Manelis said the strike was the largest attack carried out by Israeli in Syria since the two signed an agreement following the end of the 1973 Arab-Israeli War.

It is also the first time Israel directly pointed blame at Iran for firing into Israeli territory.

Israel claimed that the Iranian strikes on its territory caused no injuries or damage. It said four were intercepted by the Iron Dome rocket defence system, while others fell in Syrian territory.

Manelis told Haaretz: “We were prepared and we sum up this night as a success despite the fact that it is still not over.”

He said that Israel does not seek escalation but its forces were “prepared for any scenario.” He added that Israel “hit hard at Iranian infrastructure” that it claims Iran has been building up for over a year.

Manelis posted a photo to his personal Facebook account, illustrating Israel’s airstrikes at several locations in Syria, including several near Israel’s capital of Damascus.

Syrian state news agency SANA reported: “The Syrian air defences are confronting a new wave of Israeli aggression rockets and downing them one after the other.”

SANA also posted video of what it reported to be Syrian air defences shooting down Israeli missiles.

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