A report has revealed that Israel’s former Military Intelligence Director Major General Aviv Kochavi once advocated toppling the incumbent Syrian government and even proposed the assassination of President Bashar al-Assad over his staunch support for the Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement.
Saudi Arabia’s Arabic-language and independent Elaph online newspaper, citing an unnamed senior Israeli official, reported that Kochavi recommended removing Assad’s administration because “it would bring calamities to Israel from Iran, Hezbollah, and Russian influence in the region.”
The official noted that Mossad head Yossi Cohen, in return, rejected the idea and preferred to deal with a known adversary if need be, arguing that he “wanted an address in Syria.”
The report stated that while Israel had several opportunities to target Assad and his top leaders during the ongoing foreign-sponsored militancy, the Tel Aviv regime instead opted to focus on preventing Iranian entrenchment in Syria by launching attacks against purported positions of Iranian and Hezbollah forces.
Israeli officials argue that Iran’s presence in Syria, which is part of an advisory mission requested by the Damascus government, poses a threat to the Tel Aviv regime’s security.
The Israeli military, using this pretext, has pounded alleged positions of Iranian and Iran-backed forces across Syria over the course of the nearly eight-year conflict.
The attacks are usually viewed as attempts to prop up foreign-sponsored Takfiri terrorist groups that have been suffering defeats at the hands of Syrian government forces and allied fighters from popular defense groups.
Israel and the United States have even put pressure on Russia, another close ally of the Syrian president in the war against terrorist groups, to force Iran out of Syria.