Israeli DM Threatens to Attack Russian Ships
Defensive Shipments a ‘Threat’
by Jason Ditz
May 28, 2013
Israel’s long-standing habit of making bellicose threats in the face of neighbors potentially acquiring defensive weapons has reached a new level today, with Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon threatening to attack Russian ships in the Mediterranean if they attempt to deliver anti-aircraft weapons to Syria.
Russia has had a long-standing contract with Syria to provide anti-aircraft defensive systems, and the Assad government is keen to get those shipments completed in the wake of repeated Israeli air strikes against them. The Russian S-300 system, the best the Russian government sells, is seen as being able to foil Israeli attacks.
Israel has struggled to justify its opposition to the deliveries, making ridiculous predictions of a dystopian future in which the whole region is a no-fly zone because Syria is attacking random planes for no reason. Syria’s existing arsenal would be able to do this at any rate, and it doesn’t. The obvious reason for acquiring the S-300 is to stop the Israeli attacks, and that’s also the obvious reason for Israeli opposition. It’s just not likely to convince the Russians.