Israeli air strike on Syria meant to demoralize Syrian army

Jet fighter

Newscast Media DAMASCUS—Political analysts believe the Israeli air strike against a Syrian military research center was aimed at diverting the Syrian army ‘s attention in its fight against armed rebels and boosting the rebels’ morale. Israeli war jets carried out an air strike at dawn on Wednesday, destroying a military research facility in the Jamarya suburb of Syrian capital, the Syrian state-run media said.

Western officials said the air strike targeted a convoy carrying sophisticated anti-aircraft weaponry from Syria to Lebanon’s Hezbollah. According to a statement released by the Syrian army, Israeli war jets sneaked off radars and hit a center for scientific research in a suburb of Damascus at dawn Wednesday.

The attack came after many unsuccessful attempts by the “armed terrorist groups” to capture this site over the past months, the military statement said, reiterating that the Israeli air raid played in the hands of the rebels. However, Israel kept silent about the rare air strike.

Decrying the attack as “flagrant intervention” to the Syrian airspace, the military said Israel is the driving force and beneficiary of the terrorist acts committed in Syria with the partnership of Qatar and Turkey. However, the statement said nothing about a possible payback.

“The air strike meant to lift the morale of the armed rebels who are suffering great losses and defeats,” Taleb Ibrahim, a Syrian political researcher, told Lebanese al-Manar TV.

Ibrahim noted that the move came to divert the attention of the Syrian army and test whether the Syrian military is still capable of responding after it has stretched its fight nationwide against the rebels and radical jihadist groups.

“It is not a good time for Syria to retaliate against Israel,” Ibrahim said, adding that the response will come in due time.

Russia, Syria’s main international ally, said, “If this information (about the air strike) is confirmed, then we are dealing with unprovoked attacks on targets on the territory of a sovereign country, which blatantly violates the UN charter and is unacceptable, no matter what the motives are to justify it.”

The Israeli attack has come to add more complications to the country’s 22-month-old crisis, which might see some light with the recent declaration by the head of the main opposition coalition abroad, Moaz al-Khatib.

Khatib said on his Facebook page that he is ready to embark on talks with the Syrian administration in order to curb the bloodshed in the country, which has already left more than 60,000 people dead since March 2011.

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