Assad warns of 'strategic' response to IDF strikes

Syrian president threatens well-planned resistance; Netanyahu: “We are dealing with these developments with determination.”

Bashar Assad 370 (photo credit: REUTERS/SANA/Handout)
Bashar Assad 370
(photo credit: REUTERS/SANA/Handout)
Syrian President Bashar Assad has issued a strong warning to Israel, saying that he is completely serious in opening up the Golan front against Israel, Lebanese paper Al-Akhbar reported on Monday.
The resistance will not launch primitive rockets aimlessly from time to time, but will carry out a well-planned and continuous resistance, Assad reportedly said to a group of visiting Jordanians. He added that Israeli attacks will elicit a strategic, rather than a local response.
His mention of randomly fired rockets could be a slap at Hamas, which often relies on this tactic when firing rockets from Gaza. Hamas left its former base in Damascus in 2012, deciding to support fellow Sunnis fighting in the Syrian opposition. The move angered Syria and its ally Iran, which has decreased its support for the movement as a result. Instead, he compared this resistance to the kind waged by Hezbollah in southern Lebanon, according to the report.
In regard to Russia, Assad explained that they did not try at any point of the conflict to dictate any position on the country.
Assad told Al-Manar TV at the end of May a similar plan, stating that “there is pressure by the people to open a new front on the Golan.”
“Even among the Arab world there is a clear readiness to join the fight against Israel,” he added in his interview with the Hezbollah TV station.
Assad stated that Hezbollah is involved in fighting the Israeli enemy and its agents in Syria and Lebanon. He attributed the failure of the Syrian opposition to its dependence on outside funding and said that it failed to create a real rift in the country.
Assad also said that he sees the balance of power in Syria shifting to the government’s side. And this despite the fact that the “terrorists” – how Assad refers to the rebels – are smuggling fighters and weapons through all of the borders.
In relation to Israel, he said, “If we want to respond to Israel, the response must be strategic.”
Netanyahu: Israel on guard against 'raging' Mideast
On Monday, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu told the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee that Israel was dealing with “a new Middle East.”
“We are seeing a new Middle East that is raging and volatile,” the premier said. “We are seeing this on all of the fronts, particularly in the north with Syria.”
“We are dealing with these developments with determination,” Netanyahu said of the ongoing situation in Syria. “This requires us to protect the security of our citizens.” staff contributed to this report.