Israeli Response to the Syrian Crisis and New Security Environment on the Israel-Syria border

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Authors

KAPUSŇAK Ján

Year of publication 2014
Type Chapter of a book
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Social Studies

Citation
Attached files
Description In the third year of its bloody civil war, Syria continues to implode, despite some progress in the ability of the regime to combat the rebels. The crisis in Syria has created an acute humanitarian problem for neighboring countries except of Israel. For Israel, the positive aspect of the protracted Syria civil war and the attrition of the Syrian army is the weakened conventional threat on the northern and northeastern fronts. However, the effective disintegration of the Syrian state poses new security threats in the north of Israel. The dangers arising from this development are particularly acute. Nowadays, Syria has become a base of activity for global jihad groups against Assad regime and its supporters, particularly Hezbollah and Iranian Revolutionary Guards. The main jihad networks active in Syria are Jabhat al-Nusra and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. Hezbollah and Global jihad entities operating in Syria were generally not active against Israel, except for isolated rocket fire in August 2013, but the standing situation is changing. Since early March 2014, there have been the three violent incidents on Israel's border with Syria. The Israel-Syria border is now an active conflict zone once more. What are perspectives of this development? It could drag Israel into a series of border incident, a prolonged dispute, or even rocket fire or gunfire deep into Israeli territory and widespread escalation. Israel must continue to consider military operations against strategic weapons in Syria in order to prevent their transfer to Hezbollah in Lebanon or their falling into the hands of jihadi elements in Syria itself. At the same time, it is critical to help implement the international agreement on the dismantlement of Syria’s chemical arsenal.
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