American TIME magazine reported Friday evening that Israeli warplanes struck several targets inside Syria in an alleged raid Tuesday night, including a biological weapons research center that was reportedly flattened out of concern that it might fall into the hands of Islamist extremists fighting to topple the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad.
The report is based on comments made by Western intelligence officials.
TIME explained that only two airstrikes had been publicly reported, amid a flurry of conflicting initial reports: Syria officially complained of the destruction of the Scientific Studies and Research Center in Jamarya, northwest of Damascus, and a variety of news organizations reported that Israeli jets hit a convoy carrying advanced anti-aircraft defense systems toward Lebanon’s Beqaa Valley, presumably for delivery to Hezbollah.
“A Western intelligence official indicated to TIME that at least one to two additional targets were hit the same night, without offering details. Officials also said that Israel had a ‘green light’ from Washington to launch yet more such strikes.”