An alleged airstrike by Israel has targeted areas of the Damascus, Syria airport and resulted in one Syrian soldier having been killed according to SANA the Syrian state-run media channel. 

“At around 12:50 a.m, the Israeli enemy carried out an air raid with several missiles in the direction of the occupied Syrian Golan and targeting several positions in the south,” a military source was quoted by SANA.

Syrian air defenses shot down most of the missiles, SANA said. The attack led to “the martyrdom of a soldier and some material losses”, it added. Russian sources said that Syrian-operated, Russian-supplied Pantsir-S1 air defense systems shot down seven of the eight missiles launched.

But as usual, that bluster from Syrian and Russian sources doesn’t tell the real story. It is believed that Israeli four Israeli F-16s flying over the Golan Heights launched cruise missiles at targets in and around the Damascus airport. 

Satellite images from Capella Space and shared on social media (Twitter) by Aurora Intel, however, clearly show that the runway at the airport was cratered in three spots spaced perfectly about 2,000 feet apart (600 meters).  That would debunk the claims that seven of the eight missiles were shot down. 

SET imagery of the cratered runway at Syria’s main airport. photo: Aurora Intel via Capella Space on their Twitter accounts

Sputnik International, a Russian-based media organization quoted Russian Rear Adm. Vadim Kulit, deputy head of the Russian Center for the Reconciliation of Warring Parties in Syria, who said to the press at a briefing, “on December 16, from 1:51 to 1:59, four Israeli Air Force F-16 tactical fighters from the airspace over the Golan Heights struck with eight cruise missiles at targets near the Damascus International Airport.” 

He added that the Syrian air defense forces, firing the Pantsir-S systems shot down seven of the eight missiles fired by Israeli F-16s.

“As a result of the airstrike, a warehouse was damaged, one person was killed,” Kulit said. But he made no mention of the perfectly spaced craters at the runway.