The IDF has taken its fingers off the panic button and has lifted Sunday’s ban on civilian aircraft in the north following the weekend bombing attacks on missiles in Syria.
The closure grounded Arkia’s Haifa-Eilat flights as well as private planes, and it was supposed to stay in effect at least until Thursday.
An army spokeswoman told the French news agency AFP that the closure was expected to end later on Monday, while the IDF confirmed to the Jewish Press that the ban already has been lifted.
“Civilian aviation in northern Israel will resume regular operation following security assessments,” a statement said.
Headlines around the world are screaming that Syria, Lebanon and Israel are prepared for war, and that is correct to the extent that every normal country beefs up its defenses in the face of a perceived threat.
But a sure sign that everyone, particular Hezbollah and Syrian President Bashar Assad, are basically huffing and puffing is that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu took off for China Sunday night.
It is extremely unlikely that the Prime Minister of Israel would trek off the Far East to promote trade relations if political and military analysts expected war.
Just to make sure Syrian President Bashar Assad understands Israel’s intentions of self-defense by bombing in Syria of Iranian missiles that were about to be handed over to Hezbollah in Lebanon, Israel reportedly sent him a soothing “don’t worry” message Monday.
Israel has no intention of trying to help the rebels and is not trying to intervene in the civil war, said the message, sent through diplomatic channels, according to the Hebrew language Yediot Acharonot newspaper.
Israel has rarely, if ever, intervened in another country’s political affairs, although critics charge that Israel’s political leaders’ love of American politics has proven the United States to be an exception.
Prime Minister Netanyahu knows full well that it will not relish whoever might replace Assad, termed a “butcher” this week by no less than his former short-lived fair weather friend Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Similarly, Israel uncharacteristically shut up during the Arab Spring rebellion against Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.
The war rhetoric mainly is coming from the other side of the border, with Syrian television even calling on “Palestinians to act against Israel” from the Golan Heights.
However, there are virtually no “Palestinians” in the Golan, where most of those who are not Jewish are Druze.
If Syria meant that the tens of thousands of Palestinians in Syria would cross the Golan Heights border like tourists, of it meant that the Druze are going to fight for Assad, that only shows how much the Syrian regime is living in its own world.
About the Author: Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu is a graduate in journalism and economics from The George Washington University. He has worked as a cub reporter in rural Virginia and as senior copy editor for major Canadian metropolitan dailies. Tzvi wrote for Arutz Sheva for several years before joining the Jewish Press.
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