The last time major explosions were reported near Damascus, it was in May when Israel and its air force did everything in their power to provoke the Assad regime to escalate military operations both domestically and abroad. It almost succeeded when three months later Obama nearly led a falseflag-driven "liberation" force facilitating Saudi and Qatari energy interests in the region and their pipeline ambitions below Syria. Since then Israel had been largely dormant, seething in its (and Saudi) disappointment that it was unable to play Obama like a fiddle.
The unstable detente changed again overnight, when as Haaretz reports "a large explosion was heard at a Syrian army missile base in Latakia. Eye witnesses told the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human rights that the explosion took place near Snobar Jableh, south of the city. It was not yet clear whether anyone was wounded in the strike." And not surprisingly, it is once again Israel' that was implicated in the latest regional provocation because as Haaretz adds, the "strike follows Lebanese media reports that Israeli aircraft circled above southern Lebanon."
"The official Lebanese news agency reported that Israeli aircrafts were sighted on multiple occasions Wednesday in the south of the country. According to the report, which was based on a press statement by the Lebanese army, the airplanes entered Lebanese airspace at around 1:40 P.M. and circled over various places before leaving over the Mediterranean Sea near Tripoli and Naqoura at 5 P.M."
A Facebook page run by Syrian rebels claimed that the strike occurred at around 7 P.M. According to the page, a missile was fired from the sea and struck the Syrian base but did not result in any casualties. Israeli sources declined to comment on the reports.
Last week, Kuwaiti newspaper Al Jarida reported that Israeli fighter planes had bombed a shipment of missiles in the border area between Lebanon and Syria. The report, which according to the paper was based on sources in Jerusalem, has no confirmation from any other source.
The source told the newspaper that the missiles that were destroyed were of an advanced model and were designated for Hezbollah, as part of the strengthening of the organization's missile system. It is not clear whether the attack was carried out on Lebanese territory or on Syrian territory.
Israel refused to comment officially on the publication in the Kuwaiti newspaper, whose reliability is questionable.
While hardly surprising if Israel is confirmed as the offending party, a far bigger question is what are next steps: because unlike before, Putin has now very officially made Syria his protectorate, even as the US protective influence over both Syria and the region in general was waned substantially in the past few months. But perhaps more surprising is the desperation with which Israel is once again trying to destabilize the region. One thing that is clear: while such provocative actions may have yielded results as recently as half a year ago, Israel will need to put far more energy into comparable actions in the future, whether they target Syria or Iran, as the public opinion's threshold for unwarranted Israel offensive action has dropped substantially since the bundled US foreign policy escapade in Syria which was an unmitigated disaster for the US-Saudi-Qatar-Israel axis.