Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman’s landing in Moscow on Thursday, May 31, was preceded by stealthy Iranian and Hizballah moves into three strategic locations facing Israel’s Golan border. Hizballah troops at the nearest point are disguised in Syrian army uniforms, in respect of the Russian narrative, articulated this week by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, that only Syrian government forces should stand on the Israeli border.
Lieberman held critical talks with his Russian counterpart, Gen. Sergei Shoigu, on Thursday. He was accompanied by Military Intelligence Chief Maj. Gen. Tamir Hainman and the defense ministry’s senior security adviser Zohar Palti. Those talks were more pressing than ever, given the Iranian/Hizballah rapid advance on the Quneitra region just ahead of his arrival in Moscow.
That force first took up position on the hills surrounding this Syrian Golan town at Tal Misbih, Tal Arbad, Tal Marez, Tal Ghasm and Tal Ghashim. It then split into three parts. DEBKAfile’s military sources report. One element pulled back to the Syrian army’s 10th armored division base at Qatana, midway between Quneitra and Damascus, leaving the Iranian-Hizballah command post behind at Khan Arnabah. A third element of the Iran-led force branched north to the village of Khadar opposite the IDF’s Mt Hermon outpost west of Majdal Shams. These Hizballah troops, who are posted at the closest point to the Israeli border, were disguised in the uniforms of the Syrian 4th Division and 12th Brigade. From Khadar and the surrounding mountain villages, Hizballah has a close-up overview for the surveillance of Israel’s Golan outposts and border defenses…more