Israel is once again escalating its actions against Syria, Lebanon and the Palestinian Gaza Strip in an attempt to maintain deterrence.
On September 11, Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Galland accused Iran of building an airport in southern Lebanon in cooperation with Hezbollah for "terrorist purposes."
The minister presented photos of the airport, which is being built in the mountainous region of Kalaat Jabour, 20 kilometers from the border with Israel. Meanwhile, Israeli Channel 14 reported that Hezbollah plans to operate Iranian-made drones from the airport.
Galad stressed that the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) would not hesitate to use lethal force in any future conflict, warning that Hezbollah and Lebanon would pay a "heavy and painful price." The Lebanese group did not respond to these accusations and threats.
Two days later, on 13 September, two waves of Israeli attacks hit Syria, one of Hezbollah's main allies.
The first wave of strikes targeted air defence positions near the towns of Kartou [al-Karima] and Der Alhajar in the southern countryside of Tartus. Two service members were killed and six others were wounded in the attack.
The second wave, which came a few hours later, targeted a facility of the Syrian Scientific Studies and Research Centre (SSRC) near the village of Taksheesh in the southern countryside of Hama. The SSRC develops and produces military equipment, including precision missiles and drones, for the Syrian army and its allies, with alleged support from Iran. The attack resulted in only material casualties.
The attack on Tartus was apparently a mission to suppress enemy air defenses, with the aim of paving the way for Israeli fighter jets to hit their targets in Hama without having to evade Syrian air defenses.
Later, on September 15, an Israeli drone targeted a Hamas movement observation post in the Gaza Strip after Palestinians protested the Line.
In a statement, the IDF said hundreds of Palestinians "rioted" at the line. The protesters detonated explosive devices at the demarcation line and threw grenades, according to the IDF, which added that troops stationed there responded with riot dispersal means and with live fire in some cases.
Nine Palestinians were wounded by Israeli fire and crowd dispersal devices. Among the injured was a photojournalist who was hit in the arm by a tear gas canister.
Gazans recently resumed the Hamas-permitted demonstrations to draw attention to deteriorating living conditions in the impoverished coastal strip after the cut in monthly disbursements from Qatar, one of the movement's biggest donors.
Israeli escalation against Syria, Lebanon and Gaza is creating great tension. However, a direct military confrontation remains highly unlikely, as all sides understand the risks associated with a new all-out war.