The Pro-Syrian, Palestinian Terrorist Group That Was Likely Struck by Israeli Missiles

Yesterday the Lebanese government claimed that Israeli drones had attempted an attack on Beirut. More credibly, there have been reports—as yet unconfirmed by Jerusalem—that the IDF struck a military installation along the Syria-Lebanon border belonging to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine–General Command (PFLP–GC). These attacks were likely an attempt to thwart Hizballah retaliation for Sunday’s air-strikes near Damascus. Sunniva Rose explains the PFLP–GC’s origin, and the threat the organization poses:

A pro-Syrian militant group, the PFLP-GC was formed in 1968 by Ahmad Jibril. . . . In 1965, Syrian intelligence had helped [Jibril] establish the armed Marxist-Leninist group [now known simply as the] Palestinian Liberation Front. Jibril entered negotiations to be part of the unified PFLP but withdrew before it was officially created in 1967 and established the PFLP-GC.

In its five-decade history, the PFLP-GC developed a name as a troublemaker in Lebanon and Syria. . . . The militants entered the 1975 Lebanese civil war—which raged for fifteen years—on the side of the Syrians, gaining notoriety for looting gold from banks in central Beirut. . . . Unlike the PLO, the PFLP-GC does not recognize any peace agreement with Israel.

After Lebanon’s civil war ended in 1990, the PFLP-GC was one of only two Palestinian factions to refuse to disarm. . . . The PFLP-GC has also fought alongside Syrian regime forces since the start of [that country’s] civil war.

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Read more at The National

More about: Israeli Security, Lebanon, PFLP, Syria

As Vladimir Putin Sidles Up to the Mullahs, the Threat to the U.S. and Israel Grows

On Tuesday, Russia launched an Iranian surveillance satellite into space, which the Islamic Republic will undoubtedly use to increase the precision of its military operations against its enemies. The launch is one of many indications that the longstanding alliance between Moscow and Tehran has been growing stronger and deeper since the Kremlin’s escalation in Ukraine in February. Nicholas Carl, Kitaneh Fitzpatrick, and Katherine Lawlor write:

Presidents Vladimir Putin and Ebrahim Raisi have spoken at least four times since the invasion began—more than either individual has engaged most other world leaders. Putin visited Tehran in July 2022, marking his first foreign travel outside the territory of the former Soviet Union since the war began. These interactions reflect a deepening and potentially more balanced relationship wherein Russia is no longer the dominant party. This partnership will likely challenge U.S. and allied interests in Europe, the Middle East, and around the globe.

Tehran has traditionally sought to purchase military technologies from Moscow rather than the inverse. The Kremlin fielding Iranian drones in Ukraine will showcase these platforms to other potential international buyers, further benefitting Iran. Furthermore, Russia has previously tried to limit Iranian influence in Syria but is now enabling its expansion.

Deepening Russo-Iranian ties will almost certainly threaten U.S. and allied interests in Europe, the Middle East, and around the globe. Iranian material support to Russia may help the Kremlin achieve some of its military objectives in Ukraine and eastern Europe. Russian support of Iran’s nascent military space program and air force could improve Iranian targeting and increase the threat it poses to the U.S. and its partners in the Middle East. Growing Iranian control and influence in Syria will enable the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps [to use its forces in that country] to threaten U.S. military bases in the Middle East and our regional partners, such as Israel and Turkey, more effectively. Finally, Moscow and Tehran will likely leverage their deepening economic ties to mitigate U.S. sanctions.

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Read more at Critical Threats

More about: Iran, Israeli Security, Russia, U.S. Security, Vladimir Putin