Syria Rebels Seize Military Compound Near Israel

Military Intelligence Site Just Five Miles From Frontier

Syrian rebel fighters are moving ever closer to the frontier with the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, today capturing a military intelligence compound in Shagara, just five miles from the ceasefire line with Israel.

The Yarmouk Martyrs Brigade took credit for its capture, the same group that kidnapped 21 UN soldiers earlier this month. They say the building was being used by one of the pro-Assad militias as a command center, and that it fell after a five day siege.

“We have completed our liberation of the town of Shagara,” the rebels insisted. The commander said the goal of operations in the Golan is to stretch Assad government troops thinner.

So far that hasn’t been panning out, because while fighting has been intense in the area between Damascus and the Golan Heights, the Assad government has mostly contented itself to ceding the area along the Israeli border and focusing on protecting the capital.

Since Israel is openly talking about seizing more Syrian territory for a “buffer zone,” such towns are liable to be temporary gains for either side.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.