US War on Syria, Day Two: Civilian Casualties, New Scarier Group Hit, Israel Joins

In an attack on Syria that the Obama administration promises will be “ongoing,” the first day of US bombs has reportedly left eight civilians dead including three children. Some 33 fighters were reportedly killed, producing a typical but troubling civilian-to-fighter kill ratio. US airstrikes struck inside the city of Raqqa, including residential buildings claimed to be occupied by ISIS. The group has already re-located its heavy weaponry out of the area, however.

The US has also, according to press reports, attacked the newly discovered (by the media at least) “Khorasan” group, touted as even scarier than ISIS and far more terrifying than the relatively tame al-Qaeda. The Pentagon claimed in a statement that this latter group was plotting an “imminent attack… against the United States and western interests.”

Meanwhile, Israel shot down a Syrian government fighter jet that, perhaps accidentally, veered into Golan Heights airspace. Golan is Israeli-occupied Syrian territory. When hit, the Syrian jet was reportedly bombing Quneitra, rebel-held territory carved out of Syria’s border area with Israel by the Israeli military to provide a staging position for an eventual rebel assault on Damascus.

The shoot-down of a Syrian Sukhoi fighter sends a strong cautionary signal to the Syrian government: Israel is ready to strike again.


7:19 am on September 23, 2014