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Israel sets new red lines with Syria

The Israeli government prefers that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's forces keep the Golan quiet, while making clear it will not tolerate any game-changing weapons transfers to Hezbollah.
An Israeli army officer speaks to a soldier who was wounded during an explosion as he is evacuated to hospital, in the northern city of Haifa March 18, 2014. A roadside bomb wounded four Israeli soldiers patrolling the occupied Golan Heights on Tuesday, and Israel retaliated with artillery fire on Syrian army positions, the army said. It was not clear who had planted the bomb in an area where the Syrian military, Lebanese Hezbollah guerrillas and Syrian rebels fighting President Bashar al-Assad all have a p

On Thursday, March 13, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu convened a special meeting of the diplomatic-security cabinet at the headquarters of the Defense ministry — the nerve center of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) and its intelligence services in Tel Aviv.

Such cabinet meetings in Israel often take place under a pall of secrecy and usually go unreported. This time, however, an official statement about the meeting was released. The purpose was to ratchet up pressure on Gaza-based Islamic Jihad leaders, who, just a day earlier, had fired a salvo of dozens of rockets at Israeli towns near the Gaza Strip and in the Negev region, thus embarking on another round of violence against the IDF and the Israeli Air Force (IAF).

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