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December 3, 2016 / 3 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Golan’

Exclusive Report on Israeli-Syrian Border: Islamic State’s West Syrian Branch Attack on IDF

Wednesday, November 30th, 2016

Israel was still busy battling wildfires across the country when the Islamic State’s west Syrian branch, Jaysh Khaled Ibn al-Walid (formerly known as the Yarmouk Martyrs Brigade), engaged the Israeli Defense Forces in a battle on the Golan Heights for the first time.

At 8:30 a.m. Sunday, ISIS operatives opened fire at a Golani Brigade patrol of the IDF near Avnei Eitan on the southern Golan Heights in north-east Israel.

The IDF soldiers had crossed the border fence to conduct an “ambush operation” while remaining within Israeli territory when they were fired upon by ISIS terrorists on the other side of the border.

The soldiers returned fire but then came under attack from mortar shells.

At that point, the Israeli Air Force intervened and a drone targeted the four terrorists with a missile while they tried to flee in a truck with a heavy machine gun on top of it.

IDF spokesman Col. Peter Lerner said that “it was a short exchange” and called it “productive,” meaning the four ISIS terrorists were killed.

On Monday morning, the Israeli Air Force again targeted the Jaysh Khaled Ibn al-Walid brigade, named after Muhammad’s top general, Khaled Ibn al-Walid, who lived in the seventh century and died in a battle in Syria.

This time an abandoned U.N. Disengagement Observer Force compound that ISIS used as an operations center was bombed to bits with no fewer than 10 2,200-pound bombs.

“This is an additional response to yesterday’s attack, and it is aimed at preventing the terrorists from returning to the installation which poses a significant threat,” an IDF statement read.

The Israeli army said the former UNDOF compound was the base from which the four terrorists had departed prior to their attack on the Golani patrol.

Analysts and pundits in Israel were quick to point out that the attack by the ISIS branch was not the beginning of a war between Israel and the Islamic State and that the reason for the attack was an internal feudISIS’ crumbling caliphate, a reaction to an Israeli provocation, or even an operational error.

Ha’aretz military affairs analyst Amos Harel went as far as suggesting that the Syrian border area had been quiet and claimed that “militias keep the border quiet and keep the extremist rebels away, above all the Al-Qaida-linked group formerly known as the Nusra Front.”

The reality is somewhat different, however.

The Syrian army, together with Iranian-backed Shiite militias, is working to retake the Kuneitra province while the Islamist rebel groups on the Israeli-Syrian border are increasingly cooperating.

Two weeks ago, Jabhat Fatah al-Sham — formerly known as Jabhat al-Nusra, an Islamist rebel group that was affiliated with al-Qaida but decided to go it alone this year — together with other Islamist rebels, launched a massive attack on the Druze village of Khader just across the Israeli border near Magdal Shams on the northern Golan Heights.

Hassan Fagredin, a Druze political activist from Magdal Shams, told Western Journalism that nine Druze fighters and 50 Islamist rebels had died in the battle.

He partly confirmed a NOW Lebanon report of Nov. 14 that said a large battle had taken place between the Syrian army and its allies and a Jabhat Fatah al-Sham-led Islamist coalition that tried to overtake Khader, one of the three Bashar al-Assad strongholds near the Israeli border.

Fagredin, who said he has remained loyal to al-Assad because the Syrian dictator is the only one who guarantees the safety of the Druze minority in Syria, asserted that the Syrian army now has the upper hand in the protracted battle against the Islamist rebel groups in the border area.

The Druze activist suggested the ISIS attack on Israel could have been related to the anger in Syria over Israel’s activities on the Golan Heights, where existing communities will be expanded on a large scale and where plans exist to build new villages.

Fagredin said there have been more battles recently between al-Assad’s army and the rebels in the border area with Israel.

This was also confirmed by foreign journalists at the Kuneitra observation post some 10 miles from Magdal Shams.

The reporters told Western Journalism they had witnessed how the al-Assad alliance had recently attacked rebel positions near the abandoned UNDOF base at Kuneitra.

By using binoculars one could see the bombed-out buildings near the U.N. compound on the Syrian side of the border, they said.

The pro-al-Assad coalition is reportedly also laying siege on rebel-held towns in Kuneitra province while the Islamist rebels frequently fire rockets and mortar shells on government-controlled towns in the region.

In September, the Islamist coalition made another attempt to stop the advances of the pro-al-Assad coalition, but the offensive ended in an abysmal failure, according to Al Masdar News.

The latest spillover of the Syrian civil war into Israel comes a year after the pro-al-Assad coalition launched a major offensive that was expected to have ended in a victory over the Islamist rebels in Kuneitra.

However, the situation on the ground shows that al-Assad might need the sort of offensive that is currently taking place in Aleppo (Halab) to realize his goal on the Golan Heights.

As Western Journalism reported in September, the Islamist groups in the area of the Israeli border are increasingly cooperating, and some of them have sworn allegiance to the Islamic State.

The battles for control over Khader and Kuneitra show the Islamist coalition is far from defeated and could pose a long-term danger to Israel.

The IDF, meanwhile, is preparing for more incidents like the one that occurred Sunday as a massive drill involving Merkava tanks and armored vehicles a few miles from the Kuneitra observation post showed Monday.

Yochanan Visser

Rocket Alert – Golan Heights

Tuesday, November 29th, 2016

The Rocket Alert went off on the southern Golan Heights at 11:25 AM on Tuesday.

Some Golan residents report a second siren went off, as well as hearing an explosion somewhere in the area.

Residents have been told to stay in their bomb shelters.

11:47 AM The IDF is not yet aware of any projectiles that landed on the Israeli side of the Golan Heights.

11: 56 AM Residents can leave their bomb shelters.

Jewish Press News Briefs

BREAKING NEWS: First Direct Battle Between Israel and ISIS on the Golan

Monday, November 28th, 2016

{Originally posted to the Israel Rising website}

In what is being billed as the first direct clash between Israel and ISIS, the the Shuhada al-Yarmouk organization, which has pledged allegiance to ISIS, lost a number of fighters after exchanging fire with the IDF. The terror organization fired on IDF soldiers and after an exchange of gunfire, Israel’s airforce destroyed the gunman’s vehicle, killing all of the assailants.

The escalation, although minor in scope presents the first time affiliates of ISIS entered into a direct confrontation with Israel.  Either this was a trial balloon or the collapsing caliphate has decided to open a front against Israel. Given the fact that it is strethced thin due to increasing Russian bombardments and Srian government forces pushing back its fighters, it would be strange that it would want to waste fighters on a much more formidable Israeli arm.

Then again, Israel is a perfect target to distract from ISIS’s weakening position. By attacking Israel it may be able to rally the Sunni street to its side.

One senior officer stated: “We don’t know all the outcomes of the event. There is great probability there are four dead and the heavy machine gun was destroyed. The terrorists are from Shuhada al-Yarmouk, with all the significance that organization’s name carries. The Israeli forces didn’t lie in ambush by chance.”

The Israeli government wasted no time showcasing the incident and the army’s response.

Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu said, “I want to commend our soldiers who pushed back against the attack carried out against us. We are prepared against any enemy that threatens us on our northern border, and do not give ISIS a foothold for their war in Syria.”

Will Shuhada al-Yarmouk attack again? Was this is a test ballon? It is too early to give a clear answer to these questions. However, one thing is for sure, ISIS is not going to sit back and be destroyed nor will it be wished away as if it is the bogey man. Sooner or later as Syria continues to sprial out of control, Israel will have to root out and defeat ISIS with or without intenational help.

 

Israel Rising

Judea, Samaria, Golan Communities Bypassing BDS, Taking Products Directly to US Consumers

Tuesday, September 27th, 2016

This week, Yesha Council, the umbrella organization of municipal councils of Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria this week joined forces with the Israeli Ministry of Strategic Affairs to promote their products as well as products from the Golan Heights at the annual IAC National Conference in Washington. Representatives of the council and ministry handed out five thousands Medjoul dates from the Jordan Valley, two hundred bottles of wine, and hundreds of samples of Ahava cosmetics and other products to conference participants.

The imitative was part of a broader plan to educate and encourage Israel supporters worldwide to buy blue and white and support businesses most threatened by the BDS campaign. Three months ago, a similar program was held in Moscow, and many more such events are anticipated worldwide in the coming months.

Oded Revivi, Chief Foreign Envoy of Yesha Council said in statement: “Israeli industrial zones in Judea and Samaria are islands of peace and coexistence where Israelis and Palestinians work together for a better future. With no political solution on the horizon, it’s time to tell the world that Israelis and Palestinians can live and work together in peace without being pushed into an agreement that neither side wants. Boycotting Israeli companies in Judea and Samaria actually harms Palestinian workers far more than the Israeli economy and is therefore and act against peace.”

While in Washington, Revivi met with more than a dozen Senators, Congressmen and staffers on Capitol Hill from both the Republican and Democrat parties, where he stressed that Yesha Council would welcome continued dialogue and cooperation with both sides of the aisle.

Yesha Council reps having lunch with Sheldon Adelson. / Courtesy

Yesha Council reps having lunch with Sheldon Adelson. / Courtesy

The Yesha Council delegation met privately with casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, and requested his assistance with new initiatives to strengthen the connection between the Jewish people and their ancestral homeland. They reported that Adelson was extremely excited to hear about a new Amazon-like Boycott website that the Council is in the process of launching. He also agreed to come on a VIP tour of the thriving Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria.

Revivi told Adelson that “businesses in Judea and Samaria are on the frontline of the battle against BDS, [which is] currently targeting Ariel and Efrat but their ultimate goal is the destruction of the entire Jewish State. The Yesha Council is now going on the offensive launching a new Boycott website to promote Israeli goods directly to consumers.”

JNi.Media

Mortar Shell Strikes Golan Heights Third Day in a Row

Wednesday, September 14th, 2016

Another round of mortar fire from Syria reportedly struck the Golan Heights in northern Israel from Syria. The IDF located four artillery shells in the northern part of the Golan Heights by Wednesday night, Ynet reported, allegedly more of the “spillovery” from the raging civil war taking place across the border.

If the report is confirmed, it will be the third day in a row for what has become a continuing series of mortar fire despite Israeli military efforts to deter, or at least, contain an escalating situation on the northern border.

This is the eighth time the region has been hit by “spillover” action from the raging civil war taking place on the Syrian side of the border.

The attacks have continued despite retaliatory Israeli Air Force air strikes and IDF artillery fire intended as a warning to prevent further shelling.

On Tuesday, the IDF closed Route 98 in the north after the third mortar shell of the day came whistling into the region from across the border.

That attack came just 24 hours after two projectiles landed in Israel from Syria.

The Golan Heights also was attacked on Monday, and over the weekend as well.

The Israeli government has issued a statement after each attack, warning that it holds the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad responsible for all activity that takes place within its territory, military and otherwise.

Hana Levi Julian

Iran Claims Hezbollah – Not Iranian Troops – Preparing for Large-Scale Operation on Golan Heights

Tuesday, September 6th, 2016

On August 20, JewishPress.com first reported on Iranian military reinforcements entering Quneitra on the Syrian side of the Golan Heights.

Syrian sources said the Iranian Revolutionary Guards were replacing Syrian regime troops. The Iranians were being positioned there to allegedly attack the Syrian city of Daraa, near Jordan’s border.

At the same time, there was concern that the Iranian troops, once in place, would first attack Syrian rebel forces on the Golan Heights – and that Daraa was just an excuse to position them there to attack the rebels, and more significantly, to embed Iranian troops alongside the Israeli border on the Golan Heights.

There are estimates that as many as 60,000 Iranian troops are fighting in Syria.

On Monday, the official Iranian Islamic regime news outlet, FARS, claimed that the troops being stationed in Quneitra are Hezbollah and Syrian regime troops.

The report says, “Hezbollah has deployed a large number of its forces at Quneitra passage which has connected the Syrian territories to the occupied Golan.”

Both Syrian and Iranian news sources agree that forces supporting Assad are massing near Israel’s border on the Golan Heights in order to attack the Syria rebels positioned on the Golan Heights, but they apparently disagree on the identity of which of those allies of Assad it actually is.

In the past, Hezbollah operatives trying to set up terror networks on the Golan Heights have been attacked and killed, presumably by Israel.

It’s unknown which report is more accurate as to the makeup of the forces in Quneitra, are they Hezbollah terrorists or Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guards – or perhaps both?

Israel has previously stated that Iranian troops along its borders is a red line that it won’t accept.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Syrian Mortar Shell Falls in Golan Heights

Sunday, September 4th, 2016

A mortar shell fell in an open field in the northern Golan Heights. No one was hurt. The shell is presumed to have steered off course in the fighting between various groups in southern Syria.

David Israel

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/syrian-mortar-shell-falls-in-golan-heights/2016/09/04/

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