The Syrian SANA described an air strike on Sunday night, July 8, that targeted the big T-4 air base, which houses Iranian forces, near Tiyas in the Homs region. It was attributed to Israeli warplanes, purportedly flying into Syria from Jordan in the south, through Al-Tanf, where the US has an outpost. They were said to be flying low to evade detection. These reports have not been confirmed. A Syrian army officer said that the Syrian air defense system fired several S-200 missiles to take down the Israeli jet after it entered Syrian air space, but the warplane successfully evaded the attack.
DEBKAfile’s military sources note the confused Syrian accounts of the incident – if indeed it happened. It may well be an Assad regime ploy to implicate US, Israel and Jordan as collaborating to derail the ceasefire agreement the Russians obtained over the weekend with the rebels under attack in southern Syria. It sounded as Damascus wanted to discourage Russian President Vladimir Putin from seeking any kind of deal on Syria at his meetings with President Donald Trump in Helsinki on July 16 or with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu in Moscow on July 11, alleging that all they both want is stir the pot and keep the military confrontation on the boil.
For lack of evidence, it can’t yet be said for sure whether the air strike against T-4 actually happened, or was the invention of Syrian propagandists.