Update: According to Al Masdar, the Israeli pilot whose warplane was shot down by Syrian air defense forces on Saturday morning has died from injuries sustained during the engagement.
– Tyler Durden
As reported earlier (see below), a major battle broke out on Saturday between the Israeli Air Force and Syrian Air Defence Force over the occupied Golan Region, south Lebanon and the west Damascus region. During the confrontation that lasted for hours, Israeli warplanes and Syrian anti-aircraft systems traded missile fire – literally dozens of such munitions were fired – as the latter launched a general attack against ‘Iranian and regime’ bases west of Damascus.
And in a major escalation, one which has the potential to escalate into all out war, at the beginning of the battle, a Syrian surface-to-air missile downed an Israeli F-16I fighter jet over the occupied Golan Heights (described as ‘northern Israel’ by Israeli sources).
While according to initial reports both crew members ejected – the weapons operator with light injuries and the pilot with ‘severe’ injuries, according to subsequent, still unconfirmed, reports, the Israeli pilot with serious injuries has died in hospital. No further details were given according to Al Masdar.
* * *
Open war has now essentially broken out between Israel and Syria. Israel confirms through its IDF spokesperson that it has carried out “a large scale attack” consisting of at least a dozen strikes on Syrian and Iranian military targets inside Syria, in what Reuters dubbed a “major escalation of tension“.
What we previously described as Assad’s strategic “waiting game” and reluctance to respond to repeat Israeli violations of Syrian airspace while launching unprovoked attacks appears to be over as Syrian air defense has shot down an Israeli F-16 fighter jet near the Golan border region in what is a major escalation in the conflict. …