Report: Israeli Raid Likely Culprit For Destruction Of Russian Missiles In Syria

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Israeli Air Force Fighter Jet

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New reports of strikes on Russian anti-ship missiles near the port of Latakia, Syria, seem to indicate another possible Israeli strike, Reuters reports.

This would be the fourth such strike this year.

From Reuters:

Rebels described huge blasts - the ferocity of which, they said, was beyond the firepower available to them but consistent with that of a modern military like Israel's.

Israel has not confirmed or denied involvement. The Syrian government has not commented on the incident, beyond a state television report noting a "series of explosions" at the site.

As has been the trend, Israel has neither confirmed nor denied the strikes.

Israel warned Russia just this May not to arm Syria with missiles.

"At this stage I can't say there is an escalation. The shipments have not been sent on their way yet. And I hope that they will not be sent," said Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon last May . But "if God forbid they do reach Syria, we will know what to do."

Though Yaalon's warning was about s300 anti-aircraft missiles, the anti-ship missiles at Syria's port could easily threaten Israeli or American ships operating in the Mediterranean.

From Reuters:

Such weaponry, Israeli officials have made clear, would include the long-range Yakhonts, which could help Hezbollah repel Israel's navy and endanger its offshore gas rigs.

Yaalon has already been asked about the blasts reported in Latakia, and his words remained largely the same, telling reporters,  "We have set red lines in regards to our own interests, and we keep them. There is an attack here, an explosion there, various versions - in any event, in the Middle East it is usually we who are blamed for most."

As if to back him up, the last known mention of Israeli action on Syria came when an unnamed official contacted the New York Times to warn of further strikes coming from Israel.

The official, who was " briefed by high-level officials on the Syria situation in the past two days," said that Israel is "considering further military strikes on Syria to stop the transfer of advanced weapons to Islamic militants."

Rebels on the scene said they aren't sure if the strikes came from ships at sea or jets in the air. Just that the size and scope of the blasts were indicative of modern armed forces.



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