The Washington Times reports: KATZRIN, ISRAEL — For Israelis living on the Golan Heights, the muted sounds of explosions just across the border in Syria have become a daily reality, as stray mortars from the brutal six-year-old civil war land on this side of the border.
But the war has become a lot more real for residents here in recent days.
On Saturday Israel, for the first time, employed its “Iron Dome” rocket-defense system to intercept projectiles fired from Syria. While the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) said afterwards it was clear the projectiles would have landed in Syria if not intercepted, the preemptive strike shows a higher diligence on the side of the military, as internal fighting in Syria threatens to spill over onto the Israeli side. Israel’s military has also struck several Syrian government sites on the other side of the border as a warning against further escalation.
The Iron Dome batteries have mostly been used in the center of the country and the south, deployed to intercept hundreds of rockets fired by Hamas in the Gaza Strip during 2014’s Operation Protective Edge. Whether the surge in launches from Syria represents a worrying new trend remains unclear.
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