According to Western intelligence services, Israel’s airstrike on the Scientific Studies and Research Center in the Syrian town of Masyaf, Saturday, may have killed more than just Iranian and Syrian military officers.
Debkafile – an English language Israeli military intelligence website – claimed that missile scientists from both Belarus and North Korea were employed in different departments in the large industrial complex.
#Thread 1/4 –#Before,12 April, & #After ,13 April, few hours after the #strike in #Masyaf, #Syria. Completely destroyed structures which were (according to #OSINT) #missiles manufacturing hangars, related to #Iran. See here the #before and #after. #ISI #SSM pic.twitter.com/jaSUp3zBNu
— ImageSat Intl. (@ImageSatIntl) April 14, 2019
Those same Western sources note that Israel has attacked the complex before, however, the scale of this raid was massive in comparison.
It is widely assumed that Israel specifically targeted those areas of the complex dealing with working on upgrading Syrian and Hezbollah (Iran’s Lebanese proxy) surface missiles, the production of solid fuels for those projectiles and departments focusing on installing new guidance equipment to help increase their accuracy.
“North Korean engineers were working on the production of solid fuel, while Belarusians were in the pay of Syria’s Organization of Technological Industries. Behind the fancy title is an organization that specializes in breaking the UN-US embargo against the employment of expert manpower in Syria’s military production and the sale of military hardware to the Assad regime,” according to Debka.
The strike continues a long-established pattern of the Israel Defense Force’s policy of deterrence; attempting to prevent Iran from setting up weapons manufacturing sites, installations and an extensive part of the land bridge from Iran to the Mediterranean Sea.
In September 2018, the IDF admitted to having carried out more than 200 airstrikes against its northern neighbor since 2017. Most of the targets were shipments of weapons destined for Hezbollah in Lebanon, but as Iran has become more deeply entrenched, the Israeli military has attacked an increasing number of weapons factories.