DEBKAfile Special Report July 19, 2017
As Russian troops began moving into the Quneitra ceasefire sector opposite Israel’s Golan border on Wednesday, July 19, they found they were in hot competition with Israel over … humanitarian aid for the sector’s rebel-held villages. The villagers were better fed and cared for than Syrian civilians on any other of the country’s warfronts.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 18, 2017
Russian army units are preparing to move into the Syrian town of Quneitra in the coming days and take up positions opposite the Syrian-Israeli Golan border, debkafile reports exclusively. Their function is to police in the second zone of southwestern Syria designated for a ceasefire by Presidents Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin when they met in Hamburg on July 7.Quneitra is just 5km from Israel’s border and the line of IDF positions defending it.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 13, 2017
It is at this remote venue, that the two powers quietly chart their joint policies in Syria.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 12, 2017
Russian troops stepped into southern Syria for the first time Wednesday, July 13, when they entered the town of Daraa to start enforcing the partial ceasefire agreed by Presidents Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin in Hamburg on July 7. debkafile’s military sources report this exclusively. As they moved in, Syrian army tank units and Hizballah withdrew.
DEBKAfile Special Report June 25, 2017
In the last 48 hours, Israel has conducted air strikes on and aimed tank fire at Syrian army positions near Quneitra’s northern suburb of Baath city. (See map). The mortar shells that exploded on the Israeli Golan came from a battle in which Syrian and Hizballah units were fighting off a Syrian rebel offensive around Quneitra, just 3km from the Israeli border.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 4, 2017
Each has a security or ceasefire zone proposal; both are non-starters in Tehran and Damascus.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 16, 2017
Hizballah is pumping forces on to the slopes of Mt. Hermon opposite the Golan.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report September 23, 2016
In scores of air raids launched early Friday, Sept. 23, Syrian and Russian bombers pulverized Syrian rebel strongholds in eastern Aleppo, while, on the ground, Syrian military, Hizballah and pro-Iranian Shiite militia forces hammered those targets in one of the most destructive onslaughts yet seen in the nearly six-year Syrian civil war. Cries of “annihilation!” came from rebel commanders.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report September 14, 2016
The shells spilling over to Israeli Golan came from Syrian rebels – not Syrian army artillery. debkafile: The battle was initiated by the rebel Jabhat Fateh al-Sham (formerly known as Jabhat al-Nusra) to open up a link between its separates forces south and north of Quneitra.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 30, 2016
Iranian, Syrian and Hizballah sources are intimating that the “Syrian officer” injured on July 26 in Quneitra by Israel’s double Nimrod’ missile shot was none other than Revolutionary Guards Gen. Muhammad Resa Naghdi, head of the Basij, a pillar of the Iranian ayatollahs’ regime.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 10, 2016
Syria’s refugee crisis in the north is now repeating itself in the south, with tens of thousands of destitute women, children and elderly people fleeing their homes – not this time from beleaguered Aleppo to the Turkish border, but from the southern region of Daraa towards the Jordanian and Israeli borders. Unlike the broad coverage of the refugee crisis on the Syrian-Turkish border, the refugee exodus from the south has received scant media attention – even from Israeli correspondents – and no statements of policy have been issued by the Israeli government.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report December 31, 2015
Russian-Israeli air force coordination went swimmingly until Moscow turned the screw on Netanyahu this week to force him to get out of the way of Putin’s plans for South Syria.
DEBKAfile Special Report October 9, 2015
Uncertainty hangs over Moscow’s intentions regarding its air force flights near the Israel’s Golan border – even after two days of discussions ended in Tel Aviv Thursday, Oct. 8 between the Russian Deputy Chief of Staff Gen. Nikolay Bogdanovsky and his Israeli counterpart Maj. Gen. Yair Golan. A coordination mechanism between the two air forces was left as unfinished business for further discussion, debkafile reports. So it is still not clear to Israel what happens if Russian warplanes, while covering a Syrian-Hizballah operation in Quneitra, slip over into Israeli air space
Syrian rebel force launches offensive near Golan to clear path to S. Damascus. Israel acts to protect Druze
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report June 17, 2015
Jaysh Hermon (the Army of Hermon) Wednesday, June 17, launched a broad offensive on Syrian army forces in the Quneitra and Hermon sectors bordering on Israel, to capture the Syrian army’s 68th Brigade headquarters Khan al-Shih which commands the main Quneitra-Damascus highway, debkafile reports. This would clear their path to the southern suburbs of Damascus from which to encircle government troops defending the capital. The US command in Jordan warned Jaysh Hermon not to harm Syrian Druzes, as Netanyahu, Yaalon and Eisenkott interceded personally for their safety.
First ISIS Shooting Attack into Israeli Golan, First Ambush of US-Backed Syrian Rebels near Quneitra
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 30, 2015
ISIS has pushed down from eastern Syria into the South reaching to within a stone’s throw of Israel’s Golan border. The jihadis conducted their first ambush against US-backed Syrian rebels near Quneitra, killing six officers and men.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 5, 2015
The religious wars already afoot in three Middle East countries, Syria, Yemen and Iraq have overtaken the predictions of Western Cassandras, as Iran initiates challenges to Sunni powers.
Israeli fighter jets stage warning passes against Syrian air force intruders over Golan. Air tension high
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 24, 2015
Israeli fighter jets flew passes over the Golan Monday, Feb. 23 as a warning to Syrian helicopters and fighter planes to stop encroaching on the no-fly zone, in violation of standing Israeli-Syrian armistice agreements, debkafile reports. The Syrian warplanes planes dropped barrel bombs on Syrian rebel forces holding Quneitra. Spotters counted at least 30 bombs dropped by helicopters under cover of Syrian air force jets. Their crews took no notice of the Israeli fighter jets and drones present. However, a repeat performance is unlikely to be tolerated.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 18, 2015
Scores of Iranian and Hizballah fighters and a Syrian general were killed by “friendly fire” from the Syrian army’s 9th Division’s artillery and missiles Wednesday, Feb. 18, debkafile report. The incident, during their push from S. Syria to the Golan is attributed to faulty coordination among the assorted forces in the drive for Quneitra, where Tehran plans to establish a major military outpost and forward command center up against Israel’s Golan deployment. This is the first instance of Syria’s Bashar Assad agreeing to pass a warfront to Iranian command.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report September 9, 2014
The Israeli government has radically changed tack on Syria, reversing a policy and military strategy that were long geared to opposing Syrian President Bashar Assad, debkafile reports exclusively. This reversal was prompted by the increasing preponderance of radical Islamists among the Syrian rebels fighting Assad’s army in the Quneitra area. It calls for a delicate balancing act. While loath to see Assad winning the Syrian war, Israel has no desire to have Al Qaeda’s Syrian branch, Al Nusra, sitting just across the Golan border in control of Quneitra.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report August 31, 2014
debkafile reports exclusively that the UAV an Israeli Patriot battery shot down Sunday Aug. 31 over Quneitra on the Golan was launched by Hizballah – not Syria as reported. The Iran-made Ababail 2 was on a photography and intelligence-gathering mission over the Golan battleground, where the Syrian army and rebels are fighting over the Quneitra crossing. It is estimated that Hizballah was not planning to join the battle, but rather concerned in case the rebels beat back Syrian troops and broke through from northern Golan to Mt. Hermon and southern Lebanon.