BOILING POINT: Syria Threatens ISRAEL with 'Surprise' Attacks

39;Please attack'

The flareup, the first direct fighting between Israel and Iran ever, began when an Iranian drone coming from Syria violated Israeli airspace and was shot down.

"It was an Iranian copy of a United States drone that they got hold of a few years ago and they duplicated", Steinitz told Israeli radio.

The Syrian government has warned the Israeli military of "more surprises" should Tel Aviv commit any further acts of aggression against the Arab country plagued by foreign-sponsored militancy. -Gen. Ronen Manelis, said in a special statement. The F-16 jet was hit over northern Israel Saturday as it returned from a raid on a Syrian position blamed for launching an Iranian-made drone across the border. Its two crew members survived with non-life-threatening injuries and parachuted to safety.

According to the IDF Spokesperson's Unit, during the attack on the site from which the drone was launched, carried out by eight Israeli fighter jets, the Syrian army retaliated with widespread antiaircraft fire.

Israel believes that the IAF strikes in Syria took out almost half of Assad's air defenses, Israel's Haaretz reported Monday. Before Saturday's crash, the Tel Aviv regime had not lost a warplane in 35 years - since the first Israeli war on Lebanon, in 1982. The drone that was operated from a base in Syria traveled 3 to 4 miles into the Israeli territory before it was shot down by an Apache attack helicopter in the Israeli town of Beit She'an, New York Post reported. Bloomberg is reporting that as many as 200 Russian contract soldiers fighting for the Syrian army were killed last week in an attack on a base held by US and Kurdish forces in the Deir Ezzor region.

Furthermore, any conflict with Israel on Syrian soil could easily spread to Lebanon, and another devastating war with Israel could hurt Hezbollah's popularity at critical moment as it prepares for the upcoming Lebanese parliamentary elections. Hezbollah soldiers have been fighting alongside Iranian troops and Shia militias that back Syrian President Bashar along with Bashar's army. "For the Iranians, there is nothing better than to test the limits and get away with it, and that's why we should not let them", Tzuriel said.

"Reports of downing an Iranian drone flying over Israel and also Iran's involvement in attacking an Israeli jet are so ridiculous ... We support Israel's right to defend itself against any incursions into its territory". In a statement, it said Israel had targeted an air base in the Homs desert that is being used to fly drones in missions against Islamic State. Putin may look to quell the situation himself rather than have the USA get more heavily involved in a region that, in recent years, Russia, along with Iran, has tended to dominate. "The U.S. continues to push back on the totality of Iran's malign activities in the region and calls for an end to Iranian behavior that threatens peace and stability". Ali Akbar Velayati, a top aide to Iran's supreme leader, was reacting to US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson who said on Wednesday that Iran needed to withdraw its military from Syria, Reuters said. The paper wrote "the Israeli military released video it said shows an Iranian drone in Israeli airspace on February 10, before it was destroyed by an Israeli attack helicopter". "A decision was made in advance to bring down any Israeli fighter plane that would bomb the airport [using the Russian-made S-200 air defense system]".

Now, it's Russian President Vladimir Putin's move.

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