Aug 13, 2012 by AlJazeeraEnglish
Syrian rebels claim that they have shot down a government warplane in the eastern province of Deir Ezzor.
Amateur video footage shows the jet being downed, and then another of the plane's pilot giving a statement. Al Jazeera cannot verify the content of the videos.
If the report is true, then bringing down a fighter jet is a big achievement for the outgunned opposition.
But the government says the aircraft malfunctioned and the pilot was forced to eject.
Al Jazeera's Azhar Sukri reports.
DEBKAfile’s US, Turkish and Israeli intelligence sources are taking into account that Bashar Assad will view the supply of Stingers to the rebels as a game changer that threatens to tip the balance of the war against him and respond with chemical warfare against the rebels, Turkey, Israel and Jordan.
In consideration of this menace, France last week flew a medical field hospital specializing in treating chemical poisoning from its medical base at Istres to northern Jordan and set it up close to the Syrian border.