Israel sacrifices Russian IL-20 and 15 lives to protect its raid on Syria!

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THE ISRAELI regime has repaid Russia and President Putin for their attempts to reach some agreement over a withdrawal of Iranian forces from Syria, to make Israel feel more secure, by using a Russian Ilyushin Il-20 reconnaissance aircraft as a shield to draw Syrian missile fire, so that four of its F-16 jets could bomb Syria.

The Russian plane was shot down with 15 lives lost, while the Israeli jets continued to their target and then returned safely home! Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu has held a telephone call with his Israeli counterpart Avigdor Lieberman, telling him that Israel is solely to blame for the downing of the Il-20 aircraft over the Mediterranean Sea.

The Russian Defence Ministry said it used various communication channels on numerous occasions to urge Israel to refrain from conducting airstrikes in Syria, which threaten the security of Russian military personnel, Shoigu said. Now the ‘irresponsible actions by the Israeli Air Force’ have led to a tragedy which claimed the lives of 15 Russian military personnel, ‘despite all existing agreements on preventing dangerous incidents.’

‘The Russian military command in Syria had been notified of the attack just one minute before the Israeli F-16 jets conducted airstrikes,’ Shoigu pointed out. He concluded: ‘The Israeli Defence Ministry’s actions are not in the spirit of Russian-Israeli partnership so we reserve the right to take retaliatory steps.’ This is obviously one ‘partnership’ that Russia must wind up, and straight away at that.

Russian Defence Ministry spokesman Major General Igor Konashenkov told reporters earlier yesterday what Israel had done. ‘Using the Russian aircraft as a cover, Israeli pilots put it in the line of the Syrian air defence’s fire. As a result, the Il-20 plane, which has a far wider effective reflective area compared to the F-16 jets, was downed by a missile launched from an S-200 complex.

‘We consider Israel’s provocative actions as hostile,’ Konashenkov continued, ‘The bombing raid was near the French frigate The Auvergne and in close proximity to the Ilyushin-20 plane from Russia’s Aerospace Force that was about to land.’

He again pointed out that the Israeli command centres and the F-16s’ pilots ‘could not but see the Russian plane, which was approaching the runway from an altitude of five kilometres. Nevertheless, they deliberately staged this provocation. ‘A hotline warning was received less than one minute before the strike, which left no chance for getting the Russian plane to safety,’ he added.

The Auvergne, while all this was going on, was firing cruise missiles into Syria. Russia must now take action to halt the US-backed Israeli regime from raiding Syria. It must tell Tel Aviv that there will be no more ‘partnership’ between Moscow and Tel Aviv and that the Syrian armed forces will be equipped with the latest Russian missiles.

It must also support Syria’s right, and boost its capacity, to defend its own territory from air, ground and sea attacks. Syria must be armed so that it can retaliate if and when the US, UK and France organise their next strike on Syria.

The Israeli-US-UK attacks on Syria prove how correct it was for Russia to hold its recent military exercises in Siberia where 300,000 troops, plus tanks and aircraft took part. Russia needs to get ready for more western provocations, and more western military and political adventures.

The way to get ready is for the Russian workers to restore the USSR and to expropriate the new bourgeoisie, the Oligarchs, deporting them to Mayfair. It also means urging the working people of the world to disarm the imperialist powers.

2017 was the 100th Anniversary of the Russian Revolution. Workers in the West are being told by the bosses that another huge banking collapse is on the way. Now is the time for the workers of the world to support Russia and struggling states such as Syria by carrying out the victory of the world socialist revolution and smashing imperialism.