DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 4, 2016
The controversy in top Israel military and defense circles centers on the advantages and dangers of Russia’s military intervention in Syria.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis January 31, 2016
The latest batch of “top secret” documents to be leaked to the web magazine The Intercept by fugitive former NSA advisor Edward Snowden, showing that the US had spied on Israeli air force operations for more than 18 years, is as interesting for its timing as its revelations. debkafile: It served as a Keep Out of Syria sign to Israel not to count on its air force superiority for freedom in Syria’s skies and stay out of the conflict now that the Russians and Americans had taken charge..
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report January 10, 2016
In his Damascus posting, Gen. Alexander Dvornikov has been given control of the twin Russian commands in Damascus and Baghdad. They function as two halves of the same war room. They are fully coordinated under a single overall commander, enabling the Russian general to stay on top of events and in control of decisions 24/7. This is a key position of enormous authority and extreme diplomatic sensitivity. The Saudis see him as major foe, while the Iranians resent Moscow’s understandings with Israel.
DEBKAfile Special Report November 2, 2015
Syrian media reported an Israeli air force attack Sunday, Nov. 1, after two sorties Friday night against Syrian army and Hizballah bases in the Qalamoun Mountains on the Lebanese border. The IDF declined to confirm or deny these reports. Syrian sources described a large number of Israeli airplanes as bombing a Hizballah unit in the village of El Ain in northern Lebanon and the arms depot of the Syrian army’s 155th Brigade at Al-Katifa. The two targets are 70 km apart, therefore two key points along the Iranian arms supply route to Hizballah.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report October 22, 2015
Someone is tipping off Syrian rebels on the whereabouts of Iranian officers targeted for assassination. Eighteen IRGC officers have been murdered, five just in October.
With Russia’s Dep. Army Chief due in Israel, Moscow posts 64 S-300 ship-to-air missiles off Syria, N. Israel
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report October 5, 2015
Russia’s deputy chief of staff, Gen. Nikolay Bogdanovsky, with a large military delegation, arrives in Israel for a two-day visit Tuesday, Oct. 6, to discuss coordination between the two militaries. However, Moscow seems to be sending Jerusalem an altogether different message: Friday, Oct. 2, the Russian Defense ministry announced the surprise deployment of Navy cruiser, the Moskva, armed with 64 advanced anti-aircraft missiles S-300 ship-to-air missiles opposite the Syrian coastal town of Latakia. debkafile: Moscow has created an effective no-fly zone over Syria, N. Israel, S. Turkey, Jordan and Cyprus.
DEBKAfile Special Report September 16, 2015
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu will discuss with President Vladimir Putin in Moscow on Sept. 21 the continued Israeli Air Force freedom of action against threats coming from Syria. This would necessitate coordination between the Russian and Israeli air commands to avoid accidental collisions between their warplanes. A deal on these lines, tacitly agreed between Washington and Moscow, enables US air strikes against ISIS. But Israel faces more complex threats derving from the Iranian and Hizballah presence in Syria, on which Putin may dig in his heels.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report August 15, 2015
In its first arms sale to an Arab country, revealed here by debkafile, Israel has sold Jordan 12 advanced unmanned aerial vehicles of the Heron TP and Skylark types. They are urgently needed by the Jordanian Royal Air Force to beef up its cross-border counter-terrorism campaign against ISIS in Iraq and Syria. Like other joint US-Israeli-Jordanian operations ongoing against the Islamic State, the Herons and Skylarks are almost certainly being operated by officers at the US Central Command Forward-Jordan war room north of Amman. Israel earlier donated 16 Cobras to Jordan’s air force.
DEBKAfile Special Report August 10, 2015
US sources report that the Israeli Air Force may give up on the US Boeing’s KC-46A Pegasus as its future refueling tanker for long-range flights because of delays in its delivery. To retain the option of attacking Iran’s nuclear facilities after Barack Obama’s exit from office in Jan. 2017, Israel can’t wait for the Pegasus. Israel Aerospace Industries is therefore working at top speed to convert the Boeing 767, a long-range, wide-body, twin-engine jet airliner with a range of 7,000 to 11,000 km. into a refueling tanker, to replace the outdated Boeing 707.
Turkey and Jordan said preparing buffer zones inside Syria. Israeli air support mooted. Putin issues warning
DEBKAfile Special Report June 30, 2015
Turkish and Jordanian armies were reported on June 30 to be getting ready to cross into Syria and set up security buffer zones – to fight ISIS, oppose the Assad regime and stem the never-ending flow of refugees. It is not clear if they are coordinated. Turkey has prepared 18,000 troops for the operation. Its air force is to impose a no-fly zone against Syrian flights. The Jordanian army is also on the ready to go in and said to be seeking Israel’s air force participation for air cover and a parallel no-fly zone in the south.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report June 4, 2015
Israel’s wide-ranging military exercise this week had a hidden agenda of warning Tehran that Israel would not accept a fourth hostile army taking up position on its border if Iranian troops were sent to Syria.
Israeli Air Force strikes four empty “terror” targets in the Gaza Strip for five Palestinian rockets
DEBKAfile Special Report May 27, 2015
Israel resorted Tuesday night, May 26, to its old routine response to rocket attacks from the Gaza Strip by the aerial bombardment of four “terrorist” targets. Once again, Hamas hurriedly removed its personnel from the targeted facilities in time to escape casualties. For Israel it was an opportunity missed. The first Palestinian long-range Grad rocket attack since last summer’s Israeli operation in Gaza was a chance to go for really potent terrorist infrastructure, such as the new tunnels the Palestinians are again running under the border.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 16, 2015
There are ways to disrupt S-300’s radar before its control room issues the command for the missile to shoot down incoming warplanes or missiles.
DEBKAfile DEBKA Weekly April 15, 2015
The Israeli Air Force has the proven ability, unique in the region, to jam hostile ground, airborne and seaborne radar screens, using counter measures that would be effective against the Russian S-300 air defense system and its twin radar systems – if delivered to Iran. DEBKA Weekly’s next issue out this Friday reveals why the S-300 would be no bar to an Israeli air strike - any more than similar Syrian air defense missiles prevented the IAF from demolishing the Iranian-North Korean plutonium reactor on Sept. 6, 2007 in northern Syria.
DEBKAfile Special Report December 8, 2014
US military sources revealed Monday, Dec. 8, that Israel’s air strikes near Damascus the day before wiped out Russian hardware including missiles dispatched post haste to help Syria and Hizballah frustrate a US no-fly zone plan for northern Syria. The Kremlin has warned that any no-fly zone over Syria would be treated as direct US intervention in the Syria war, and incur Russian military intervention. The advanced anti-air missiles and radar Moscow sent Syria and Hizballah to back up this warning were destroyed by Israel. Damascus threatens Israel with “unimaginable harm.”
Mid-East sources: Israel’s air strikes hit Russian top-line air defense missiles sent to Syria & Hizballah
DEBKAfile Special Report December 7, 2014
Israel’s air strikes near Damascus international airport and the Syrian-Lebanese border Sunday, Dec. 7, are depicted by Middle East sources as Israel’s first overt military clash with Russia in the course of the Syrian war. Those sources assert that the strikes demolished components of Russian SA-25 or other types of top-line anti-air missile systems that Moscow had shipped in for Syria and the Lebanese Hizballah. The raid came less than 24 hours after Deputy Russian Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov shook hands with Hizballah leader Hassan Nasrallah in Beirut.
Unilateral Gaza ceasefire collapses. Israeli air strikes resume after dozens of Palestinian rockets in hours
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 15, 2014
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon ordered the Israeli Air Force to resume strikes over Gaza Tuesday afternoon, six hours after a ceasefire proposed by Egypt, accepted by Israel and rejected by Hamas, was due to go into effect. During those hours, dozens of Hamas rockets raked town after town and village after village. debkafile: The White House called off US Secretary of State John Kerry’s Cairo visit upon finding Tehran’s hand behind the rockets. Netanyahu goes on the air at 8 p.m. to explain what went wrong.
Israel ramps up Gaza air strikes, tells Gazans to evacuate border areas, after Hamas’ blanket rocket fire on Tel Aviv. Rockets from Lebanon
DEBKAfile Exclusive Analysis July 13, 2014
The Hamas-IDF contest spiraled to its highest level in three frantic hours Saturday night, July 12: Hamas hurled 10 rockets at the broader Tel Aviv area after one-hour’s notice, and for the first time targeted the Modiin-Maccabim-Reut cluster of central Israel. The Israeli air force reacted with heavy carpet bombardment the length and breadth of the Gaza Strip, followed by a IDF notice to Palestinian residents of northern Gaza to evacuate their homes for their own safety, as the area would be hit with great force in the next 24 hours.
Israel struck nine Syrian targets in response to boy’s death, and as a boost for the rebel bid for Quneitra
DEBKAfile Special Report June 23, 2014
Israel carried out nine strikes against Syrian military targets after midnight Monday, June 23, in retaliation for a Kornet rocket attack which killed an Israeli boy, and injured two others a few hours earlier. They were conducted by air and by Spike NLOS anti-tank missiles (Tamuz), against the Syrian 90th Brigade command center in Quneitra and three battalions. The IDF Spokesman said this was in response for ongoing cross-border aggression. debkafile: It was also an opportunity to help Syrian rebels break their standoff with Syria forces in the battle for Quneitra.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 10, 2014
Israel is flexing muscle, while the US and Saudi Arabia have embarked on two large-scale exercises to prepare for a possible military strike against Iran’s weapons-capable nuclear program.