Israel Attacks Convoy on Syria-Iraq Border; At Least 10 Killed

Early claims are Iranian nationals were among the slain

Truck convoys heading into Syria from Iraq are not uncommon: Iran sends fuel convoys to Lebanon and Syria a couple of times per month. On Tuesday night, one such convoy was hammered by Israeli airstrikes.

Details are emerging slowly, hindered by Israel’s policy of not talking about its attacks. Several vehicles were destroyed during the attack and at least 10 killed, with some reports putting the figure as high as 14.

Reports have some Iranian nationals among the slain in the convoy, which wouldn’t be out of the ordinary. Some are speculating that the convoy was smuggling weapons, since this is often the excuse, at least retroactively, for Israeli attacks.

Smuggling fuel into Syria has become big business in recent years. Syria’s self-sufficiency in oil has significantly declined both from war damage and the US occupying one of the major oilfields for a policy to “take the oil” that President Trump advocated.

Israeli attacks on fuel convoys aren’t necessarily common, but they do attack anything with even a hint of Iranian involvement. This seems to be a continuation of that policy of attacking Syria.

The attack took place in al-Qaim, the main border crossing area from Iraq to Syria. This is often the site of attacks, and has a substantial presence of Iraqi Shi’ite militias.

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.