Israel Slams Russian Arms Deal With Syria

Israeli FM Says Syria Has "No Interest in Peace"

Israeli officials today publicly condemned the planned Russian arms sales to the Syrian government, and said they had “raised concerns with the Russians as to their weapons sales to the region at the highest level.

The deal, announced late last week, would have Russia selling Syria some advanced warplanes, but primarily air defense systems and anti-tank weaponry.

Israeli officials said it was inappropriate to provide military support to Syria, which they called “part of the extremist axis” and claimed the weapons would end up in Hezbollah’s possession.

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman condemned Russia as “hypocritical” for allowing the sale, adding that “Syria has no interest in peace.”

Syria appears to have been particularly keen to acquire more defensive weapons over the past few months, since a February comment by Lieberman that Israel would soon launch a war that would destroy the entire Syrian government.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.