Los Angeles Times

In an apparent first, Iran and Israel engage each other militarily

JERUSALEM - A drone incursion into Israel early Saturday spiraled into a major confrontation that included the downing of an Israeli fighter jet and an extensive attack on Iranian military assets in Syria - the first known time that Israel has used force against Iran.

The attacks and counterattacks also mark the first time since 1982 that Israel and Syria have engaged in direct combat.

The chain of events threatened to escalate into active combat between Syrian government forces and Israel, which has remained an outsider in the 7-year-old Syrian civil war.

The first hint that anything was amiss came at 4:15 a.m. Israeli time, as air raid sirens wailed over the communities of the Beit Shean Valley in the lower Galilee.

An automatic warning system was

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