The year 2019 was marked by military hostilities between several nations including arch-rivals India and Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Yemen, the United States and Iran. Turkey had also sent its forces to Syria with an aim to annex border areas of the war-ridden country. The military conflicts between these countries brought the world on the verge of another major war as the world watched closely. Donald Trump Wants 'Space Force' as New Branch of Military.
Military Conflicts That Took Place in 2019
- Balakot Airstrikes by Indian Air Force: The Indian Air Force (IAF) carried out airstrikes on terrorist outfit Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) in Pakistan’s Balakot on February 26 to avenge the Pulwama attack. IAF’s 12 Mirage-2000s dropped bombs on the camps. According to reports, around 250 terrorists were killed in the military action. However, no official confirmation has been made regarding the casualties inflicted on terrorists. A day after the Balakot airstrikes, the Pakistan Air Force also violated the Indian airspace with an aim to attack India’s military station along the border, but the IAF’s prompt action foiled its attempt. In the process, Pakistan lost one F-16 fighter jet. In the aerial dogfight India also lost one Mig-21 Bison jet.
- Attack by Yemen on Saudi Arabia Oil Fields: In September this year, Yemen’s Houthi rebels attacked two major oil facilities of Saudi Arabia. In the attack, Saudi Arabia lost almost half of its output. The intelligence of Washington, a close ally of Ryadh has put the onus of the attack on Tehran sighting the use of state-of-art technology. Saudi Oil Attacks an 'Act of War', Says Mike Pompeo Promising to Hold Iran Accountable.
- Turkey’s Attack on North Syria: Turkey launched an offensive into the North Syria in October this year. The military operation was code-named Operation Peace Spring. The cross-border military operation conducted by the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) and Syrian National Army (SNA) against Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and later Syrian Arab Army (SAA). The military operation began on October 9, 2019 when the Turkish Air Force launched airstrikes on border towns. The conflict resulted in the displacement of over 300,000 people and has caused the death of more than 70 civilians in Syria and 20 civilians in Turkey.
- Iran Shooting US Drone: in June this year, Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) shot down a United States RQ-4A Global Hawk BAMS-D surveillance drone. The US drone was shot down with a surface-to-air missile over the Strait of Hormuz. However, the US claimed that the drone was flying in international airspace when it was shot down.
- Iran, UK Seize Each Others Oil Tanker: In July, the United Kingdom first seized Iran's oil tanker near Gibraltar. The tanker was carrying oil bound for Syria. Later in the same month, Iranian Revolutionary Guard seized British oil tanker Strait of Hormuz. Iran claimed that the British oil Tanker broke three rules including shutting down its GPS. Iran Releases 7 Indian Crew Members From Seized British Tanker ‘Stena Impero’.
Apart from the above mention conflicts, Iran and Israel are also at loggerheads in Syria. Israel carried out strikes on Iranian forces in Syria. Israel said that the strikes were carried out in response to rockets fired by Iran into Israel. The Israeli military claimed it had intercepted four rockets fired from Syria towards northern Israel. It further added that the rockets did not hit the ground.