Apr 16, 2018

The Worst War

It’s believed that during both the Six-Day War and the Yom Kippur War, Israeli Air Force pilots engaged Soviet MiG pilots. Not Egyptian or Syrian pilots, but actual air combat with Russians.

The Israelis won those encounters.

It appears they might be preparing to face their most vicious enemy since then, as Iran’s presence in the hellhole once known as Syria escalates the possibilities.

“When on a given day, the chance for [active military conflict with Iran] are about one percent, now it is about 10%,” former prime minister and defense minister Ehud Barak said Tuesday.

More than anything, it is Israel’s audaciousness that is keeping the enemy off its feet. “Honor” of course is mega-important in Muslim culture, and boy, their honor takes a hit against the IDF.

Monday’s “mysterious” attack of an Iranian drone section of a Syrian base left seven dead, including an Iranian colonel. The Iranians commanded the site.

In the aftermath, the usual tough talk from the Iranians. Their proxies in the region have stockpiled a quarter-million rockets, but please know, there isn’t an army or group of advisors (hint: Russia) that wants a conflict with Israel. More than likely, Iran will do what it always does: attack Israel and the West via those proxies spread around the world.

According to a report from The Times of Israel:

“’The Iranians will probably respond to the strike attributed to Israel, even if not immediately,’ reasoned Amos Yadlin, the head of the Institute for National Security Studies. ‘Iran will consider launching an official retaliation for the attacks on its soldiers this time in order to deter Israel from continuing to strike Iranian forces in Syria.’

“If and when the Iranians decide to attack Israel, he added, they will not do so from their own territory. ‘The possible theaters for doing so are Syria, Lebanon, or anywhere else around the globe, and Iran may employ its characteristic use of terror proxies.’

Still, with Syria becoming a terror and military base for several countries (Bashar Assad long ago lost control of his country, and it’s thought he might even have fled this week), it isn’t unthinkable that a regional war could break out.

“Jonathan Schanzer, the senior vice president at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, also predicted a looming ‘showdown’ between Israel and Iran on Syrian soil, going so far as anticipating the Middle East’s ‘worst war’ in decades.”

To get an idea just how complicated—and busy—Syria has become, consider that in the past several days, the Turkish army has coordinated with Syrian forces to take over the Afrin enclave in the north. They had entered the city of Tall Rifat, east of Afrin, and the…Kurdish fighters holding it for them handed it over!

And while President Trump has touted the destruction of ISIS in the region, the bloody monsters of that terror group are not totally eliminated. They are taking advantage of the chaos by launching guerrilla attacks against the Syrian army.

All this represents one of the more complex and dangerous situations Israel has faced in awhile. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has ordered his ministers to stay quiet about Israeli security issues, but everyone can see the situation could escalate out of control at any time.

Maybe I’m in a new season of life—maybe it’s just getting older!—but while these things must be so, we as believers are not to let our spirits be unsettled. This is an almost constant thought of mine these days. I remember when prophecy watchers thought Gog-Magog might break out.

In 1982.

The Soviets had stockpiled weaponry in Lebanon, but it was discovered by the Israelis when they invaded the country to drive out the PLO.

There have been, unfortunately, many such moments in the past decades.

But we are on the threshold of Israel’s 70th birthday celebrations and that in itself is an astonishing miracle.

A reminder that the Lord of History watches.

The worst war? Let us continue to pray for the peace of Jerusalem, and for the coming of the Prince of Peace, to usher-in an eternity that will never know war anymore.