Russia Bolsters Syrian Missile Defenses After IL-20M Shot Down
Israeli aircraft may have baited a radar lock on the Russian IL-20M surveillance mission by flying so closely that the Syrians accidentally locked on their own target attempting to pick up radar emissions on NATO warships. “All Israeli jets which took part in the operation had already returned to Israeli territory” by the time the Russian made aircraft with a maximum speed of 373 miles per hour powered by four turboprop engines and no self-protection features was struck.
Israeli news claims the aircraft was owned by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps. Russia’s modern S-300 missile defense systems will now go to the Syrian army. With 200 air raids by Israel in the last two years, this particular incident which killed 15 service men on board is not being treated as an act of aggression exactly, but Russia’s defense minister did warn that they will block navigation and satellite systems, as well as communications of warplanes operating in the eastern Mediterranean. This could affect future Israeli missions on Hezbollah operations inside Syria.