Three Syrian tanks entered the demilitarized zone in the Golan Heights today, Israel said, raising concerns violence from Syria's civil war could heat up a long-quiet frontier that has not seen such an incursion in nearly 40 years. Israel complained to UN peacekeepers present in the area, a relatively low-key response that suggested it did not see the Syrian armor as an immediate threat. But the entry marks the most serious spillover of Syria's turmoil to date at the frontier, where stray ordnance has exploded on the Israeli side in the past.
Meanwhile Islamic militants took part in a dawn assault on a strategic airbase in the north of the country. The attack, reported by activists, aimed to disrupt strikes by government warplanes and helicopters that are pounding rebel-held towns. Anti-regime activist group The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the attack on the Taftanaz air base continued into the evening, although Syria's state-run SANA news agency said the fighting was over and government troops had repelled a "terrorist attack."