Last week, members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard fired 20 rockets into the Israeli controlled Golan Heights. Four of the incoming rockets were intercepted and the remaining 16 resulted in zero casualties and little damage to Israeli equipment. As ineffective as the attack was strategically, it had far-reaching symbolic implications.
In response, Israel launched a massive air offensive against Iran’s Quds, which are a branch of the Revolutionary Guard, but as they crossed into Syria, the Israeli F-16I Sufas were promptly engaged by Syrian air defenses. What followed was a broadening of Israel’s target scope to include Syrian assets as well. Israel stated,
The IDF’s wide-scale attack included Iranian intelligence sites, the Quds force logistics headquarters, an Iranian military compound in Syria, observation and military posts, et cetera. In spite of a warning from Israel, Syrian aerial defense forces fired towards the IAF aircraft as they conducted the strikes. In response, the IAF targeted several aerial interception systems (SA5, SA2, SA22, SA17) which belong to the Syrian Armed Forces. All of the IDF’s fighter jets returned to their bases safely.”
While the varied political and strategic elements of this kinetic interaction could warrant pages of analysis, one interesting aspect of the offensive to surface after the fact was footage of Israeli aircraft destroying an advanced Russian air defense system known as the Pantsir-S1, or SA-22 according to NATO.