Sunday, December 17, 2017

Kuwaiti Newspaper: Israel Attacked Iranian Military Factories In Syria, Gaza Rocket Smashes Into Israeli Town Near Border

Kuwaiti newspaper: Israel attacked Iranian military factories in Syria

Over the past several months, Israel struck Iranian military factories in Syria, including factories located within civilian industrial areas, according to a report published Saturday by Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Jarida.

The newspaper cited intelligence sources and military experts to shed light on attacks attributed to the Israeli Air Force in Syria in recent months. Syria and other involved parties have declined to detail the nature of targeted sites.

According to the report, the majority of sites allegedly targeted — including in Hisya, near Homs, Jamariya, west of Damascus, the Damascus neighborhood of Al-Kiswah and Masyaf —  have one common feature.

They're all seemingly civilian industrial sites but, in reality, are Iranian military factories built since the start of the Syrian Civil War in 2011.

The report referred to the Jamariya site that included a scientific center, destroyed at the start of the Syrian crisis by Israel, and nearby security and intelligence centers that were transformed into military bases in Mount Qasioun, overlooking Damascus, that have been attacked multiple times.

The site and its surroundings also included radar bases which Israel believes are used to disrupt fighter jet abilities, in addition to factories producing surface-to-air missiles developed by Iran under the supervision of Hezbollah. 

According to Al-Jarida sources, Israel has taken action across Syria in order to "blind Syrian defensive capabilities" ahead of a major Israeli military operation in cooperation with the US, resulting from Israel's perception of an Iranian military presence in Syria, in addition to Lebanon, as a tangible threat.

The Al-Kiswah base contained Iranian facilities and Hezbollah bases in addition to weaponry depots and a factory for the construction of advanced missiles. According to the report, Tehran has been building weaponry depots and factories in different areas of Syria and has transferred missile parts to the site, where they are constructed according to needs on the ground.

In other words, Iran has not been constructing its missiles in a single location due to its fear of the site being attacked.

Unlike other bases allegedly struck by Israel, the Hisya facility is located within a civilian industrial area.

Military experts told the Kuwaiti newspaper the facility proves that Tehran has started to hide its military activity in Syria, as it does in Iran itself, and is developing Syrian weaponry in civilian facilities, such as centers for agricultural and technological research, as it did in Lebanon. There, Iran set up factories and bases for Hezbollah in industrial areas located between Lebanese cities and towns.

A rocket fired by a terrorist group in the Gaza Strip on Sunday night struck next to a home in an Israeli community north of the coastal enclave, causing damage but no injuries.
The army confirmed that two rockets were launched from the Gaza Strip and that both struck inside Israel, in the Hof Ashkelon region.
Police said that one rocket hit inside an Israeli community, and the other struck an open field nearby, causing neither damage nor injury. The names of the communities were not immediately cleared for publication.
A photograph shared on social media showed damage caused to the house. An outside wall was charred and several concrete tiles surrounding the home were destroyed.
The family whose house was hit told the Ynet news site that they’d just gotten home from lighting candles for the Hannukah holiday with one of their grandmothers when the siren went off.
“We ran to the bomb shelter — me, my husband and our two sons, one 11 and the other 13 years old — and then there was a huge explosion,” Maya Dotan told the news site.

“Our door was damaged and my car was ruined by the shrapnel, but we’re okay. Unfortunately, we have lots of experience. The kids are in shock, but we’ve got it under control,” she said.

The rocket launches set off sirens in the Israeli Hof Ashkelon region north of the Gaza Strip, including in the communities of Netiv Ha’asara and Yad Mordechai.

The rocket fire came two days after an attack in which a missile was fired at Israel, but fell short and struck a house belonging to an Egyptian family in the northern Gaza city of Beit Hanoun, according to the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories, which acts as Israel’s military liaison to the Palestinians. “Once again, the terror groups launch rockets at the residents of Gaza,” COGAT said.

A Hadashot news report said the rocket damaged the home of the brother of a senior Hamas official, Mushir al-Masri.
On Wednesday, a rocket fired at Israel from Gaza also fell inside the Palestinian territory and hit a public school, damaging a classroom, Maj. Gen. Yoav Mordechai, who heads COGAT, said at the time.
Friday’s failed rocket launch came amid a large rise in the number of rocket attacks on Israel from the Strip over the past two weeks, including a volley that caused damage to an empty kindergarten in Sderot over a week ago.

This has been the largest incidence of rocket fire from the Strip since the 2014 Israel-Hamas war. According to Israeli assessments, these rockets are not being launched by Hamas, but by other terrorist groups in the Strip. However, analysts have noted that Hamas is either unwilling or unable to clamp down on the groups.

Having a bomb shelter built into one’s home meant the difference between life and death on Sunday night when Gaza terrorists again launched their rockets at Jewish communities in southern Israel a few hours after Hanukkah candle-lighting.

The Red Alert incoming rocket warning siren triggered at around 8:45 pm in the Ashkelon Coast Regional Council district, sending families racing for cover in their safe spaces and bomb shelters across the region.

But in one home that sustained a direct hit, a Hanukkah miracle took place.
The residents of the home that was struck later told reporters it was a miracle they made it into their bomb shelter at home just seconds before the impact; having the bomb shelter inside their home saved their lives.

A number of people were treated for trauma after at least one house sustained a direct hit by one of the rockets. A second rocket landed in a different location, also in a residential area. Sappers were called to deal with the projectiles.

This is the seventh day of rocket attacks in a little over a week; approximately 18 projectiles have been fired at southern Israel from Gaza since U.S. President Donald Trump announced his recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

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