Early Tuesday, Israel shot down what it says was a Syrian fighter jet over its airspace in the Golan Heights. The Russian-made Sukhoi Su-24 got about half a mile into Israeli airspace and then tried to turn around, but was shot down by a Patriot missile, an Israeli defense official tells The Associated Press. The Syrian crew ejected from the jet before it exploded and parachuted down into Syrian territory. Syria confirmed that Israel downed one of its planes.
The Israeli military says "the circumstances of the incident are being reviewed," but Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon is unapologetic. The fighter jet had infiltrated Israel's airspace in "a threatening way," he said. "We will not any allow element, whether it is a terror group or a state, to threaten our security and breach our sovereignty." Israel took the Golan Heights from Syria in a 1967 war.