Saying they feel a “commitment to the Druze population,” the Israeli military has made a previously unheard of pledge to support the village of Khader, Syria. They say they will not allow the village, under government control, to fall to the Nusra Front.
Nusra Front, an al-Qaeda affiliate, carried out a bombing in the village Friday, killing at least nine people and wounding a number of others. Nusra issued a statement saying they also clashed with local pro-government forces.
While Israel has regularly gotten itself insinuated into the Syrian War, particularly in the Golan area, this is the first time they’re doing so in support of a government-held territory, and against Islamist rebels. Generally speaking, Israel has made it a priority to support Islamists over the Syrian government.
Violence by Islamist rebels against Syria’s Druze minority has been controversial within Israel, which has its own Druze minority, and this appears to have convinced Israel to change its position, at least in this one village’s case.