The Israeli government rarely confirms individual strikes, and the Syrian government and Hezbollah do not always admit when they are hit. But last August, Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel, the outgoing commander of the Israeli Air Force, said that since 2012, Israel has launched nearly 100 strikes on convoys. But unlike Russia and Iran, Israel did little to influence the outcome of the Syrian civil war
"It had no horse in this race, felt no love for Assad, but feared the chaos that might follow it", Mr. Sachs said, "With the victory of the Assad-Iran side, Iran's main loot is a long-term military presence in Syria that will consolidate it in the country and connect it with Lebanon, something that Israel will not accept current trend in Syria with a growing Iranian presence and therefore has a strong incentive to stop things now, before Iran continues to be entrenched. "
Was Trump's announcement a factor in the new fighting?
The Conflict Between Israel and Iran, the days escalated after President Trump announced the United States' withdrawal from a 2015 multinational nuclear agreement with Tehran. Israel had scolded the agreement before it was founded, and Trump had pledged to withdraw.
The concern now is that the shadow war Israel and Iran for years, most recently in Syria under the cover of cover of the Civil War there, has now burst into the public eye.
"It's not a proxy war, it's a direct war, and that makes it particularly dangerous," said Martin S. Indyk, a former US ambassador to Israel. "Israel and Iran have been in a Cold War for perhaps 20 years, but now it's open: a direct, kinetic connection between the armed forces, with increasing Iranian casualties – the potential for escalation is now much greater than before."
Er He said that Mr. Trump's announcement might not have helped, but that the stage was set for the conflict earlier this year. Iran sent allied militia to the Golan Heights and moved rockets and missiles to Syria to better arm Hizbollah. Iran also installed air defense systems that can get to Israel.
What happens now?
Mr. Sachs said the fighting between Iran and Israel in Syria is likely to continue.
"This back and forth – an Iranian attack on the Golan's Israeli posts and a widespread Israeli response to numerous Iranian targets in Syria – was not a one-time flare-up or a hot-headed case predominating," he said. "This is part of a structural conflict between Israel and Iran in Syria."