Israel kills 11 Iranians in Syria

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Daniel Douek teaches political science at Concordia University and McGill University.

Days after its controversial decision to pull the US out of the Iran deal, the White House is condemning an Iranian rocket attack on Israeli-occupied land, the latest in a heated escalation between the longtime Middle East adversaries.

According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, 11 Iranians were killed in the Israeli strikes.

Tensions have escalated at a frightening pace between Iran and Israel in the three days since President Donald Trump said he was pulling the United States out of the Iran nuclear deal. Russia's 2015 intervention in Syria changed the strategic balance decisively in favour of Bashar al-Assad's regime. Hezbollah may be willing to send advisers and soldiers to fight in Syria alongside the Shiite militias and the Revolutionary Guard, but it's in no hurry to entangle Lebanon in the conflict.

"The more logical response could be a strike against an Israeli air bases".

Even as Israel strains against Iran and Hezbollah having any kind of permanent military presence in Syria, its success there might depend on a major player who at the moment, remains an X-factor: Russian Federation.

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Harrowing footage shows missile strikes going off at Iran military bases in the Kiswah area, near Syrian capital Damascus. In a statement, the army said its troops are on high alert for an attack and defense systems have been deployed.

It is growingly hard for Iran to refrain from counterstriking Israel from Syria not to look as if it has given in.

It will be a war mainly with missiles from Iran and Hezbollah versus Israel's air force.

That is why, says Yuri Lyamin, the Israeli attacks are bothering and damaging, but they are not disastrous.

The UN chief's words come after Israeli forces were forced to defend the Golan Heights against attacks from the Iranian Quds Force based in Syria. So now that Israel claims to have hit virtually all of Iran's bases and installations in Syria, Russia's unwillingness to intervene on Iran's behalf is especially surprising.

Amos Gilad, a former major general in Israel's military, who spoke at a key security conference on Thursday, says Israel acted to prevent all-out war in the future.

Israeli forces have been blamed for a series of recent strikes inside Syria that have killed Iranians, though it has not acknowledged those raids. "No Iranian missile hit Israeli territory". First, since Iran and Israel do not share a border, it is hard to see how the present hostilities could spiral into a wide-ranging confrontation involving ground operations.

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