(Photo: Avishag Shaar Yashuv/Flash90)

A day after the Syrian army enabled Hezbollah terrorists to plant a roadside bomb under an IDF jeep, Israel retaliated by attacking Syrian army positions.

The IDF held the Syrian army responsible for a bomb attack yesterday on its northern border and retaliated with overnight strikes on Syria.

Hezbollah terrorists had planted a roadside bomb outside the village of Majdala-Shams in the Golan Heights. The bomb detonated as IDF troops investigated the scene, having noticed suspicious activity. One soldier had serious injuries; two suffered light-to-moderate wounds, and a fourth was treated for shock.

“The attack against IDF troops yesterday is an unacceptable escalation of violence from Syria,” IDF Spokesman Lt.-Col. Peter Lerner said. “We will not tolerate this threat against Israeli civilians or troops, and we will fulfill our mission: to prevent, protect and defend against hostilities from Syria.”

Hezbollah Aimed to Kidnap IDF Soldiers

hezbollah

Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon

Israeli Air Force planes, in retaliatory strikes, targeted Syrian army headquarters, a training facility and artillery units.

“We hold the Assad regime responsible for what happens in its territory, and if it continues to collaborate with terrorists striving to hurt Israel, then we will keep on exacting a heavy price from it and make it regret its actions,” stated Moshe Ya’alon, Israel’s Defense Minister. “We will continue to act responsibly in order to preserve the security for the citizens of Israel.”

Hezbollah later revealed to Al-Manar television, a Lebanese news outlet associated with the terrorist group, that the attack was designed to kidnap soldiers. Hezbollah sources warned that even if they failed, “this time, we are sure we will succeed in the near future.”

Yesterday’s events were not the first time Israel has been unwillingly brought into Syria’s civil war. The Syrian army and Israeli forces have exchanged fire over the border in the Golan Heights since the internal Syrian conflict began. Over the past three years, both Syrian forces and rebel fighters have crossed into the buffer zone, violating decades-long ceasefire agreements.

Two weeks ago Israeli troops shot two Hezbollah terrorists trying to plant an explosive at the fence marking the demilitarized zone. On Friday, an explosive device was detonated near soldiers patrolling the border with Lebanon. The following day IDF soldiers identified terrorists advancing on the border to set another explosive. The soldiers fired on the suspects and thwarted the attempt.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressed concern over the recent escalation:

“The border with Syria has recently become inundated with terrorists from Islamic Jihad and Hezbollah, and this has posed a security challenge for Israel. In recent years we have managed to ensure quiet as the civil war in Syria raged on. We will continue to ensure the security of Israelis.”

Author: David Fink, Contributor, United with Israel
Date: Mar. 19, 2014