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While much of the world’s attention is on the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, war will certainly come again to Israel. Ironically, one of Israel’s enemies is currently involved in the fight in Syria. Writing at The Jerusalem Post, Yaakov Lappin warns that Hezbollah is learning from its experiences in Syria – lessons that will be used in an upcoming war with Israel:
Although a war is unlikely at this time, the IDF is preparing to fight Hezbollah, which has developed new offensive cross-border capabilities alongside its massive arsenal of rockets and missiles, a senior military source said on Sunday.
Hezbollah plans to send dozens and perhaps hundreds of terrorists into Israel in any war, while targeting the home front with many projectiles, in a conflict that could last as long as four months, according to the officer.
The Shi’ite group’s focus will be to rain rockets and missiles down on Israel, but it also plans raids based on lessons it has learned from its intervention in the Syrian civil war. A preemptive Israeli ground offensive could prevent such raids, he said.
“Hezbollah’s confidence is growing, along with its combat experience in Syria,” the officer said. “The battlegrounds of Syria have enabled Hezbollah to upgrade its capabilities. Hezbollah plans to send many combatants into Israeli territory near the border and seize it.” This has prompted Israel to make “dramatic changes” to its border-defense plans, he added.
“We understood that Hezbollah is thinking offensively. It is gaining experience in Syria where it is initiating assaults in built-up areas, and attacking cities. It is learning about subterranean warfare from the perspective of the attacker … and [its officers are] learning more about themselves as the defenders in Lebanon… They are learning about controlling hundreds of fighters, coordinating intelligence, firepower, and command and control. This is a serious development that requires us to prepare accordingly,” the officer said.
In the event that Hezbollah tries to surprise the IDF by occupying part of Israel near the border, the…Read More » Comments (11) »
Wednesday, September 17th, 2014 at 8:38 AM | Stand for Israel
For years, Hezbollah has imported Iranian weapons across the Lebanese border with Syria. It is the main pipeline for the rearmament of the Iranian proxy that, before 9/11, had killed more Americans than any other terror organization.
The United Nations Interim Forces in Lebanon (UNIFIL) — which has been “interim” since 1978 — was mandated in the cease-fire following the last Israeli-Lebanese conflict in 2006 to interdict arms shipments and prevent Hezbollah from resupplying. That effort (calling it an “effort” is extremely generous) has entirely failed. If the U.N. soldiers were to simply hand their own weapons over to Hezbollah, the resupply might go slower out of sheer lack of challenge. Instead, Hezbollah now has more and better rockets than they did before the 2006 war.
Israel has, out of international political necessity, tolerated this intolerable situation for years. One can stand on the Israeli side of the Lebanese border and, with binoculars, see the Hezbollah fortifications (openly flying the bright yellow Hezbollah flag) dug in directly in front of the UNIFIL positions on the other side of the border. To strike at Hezbollah is to risk hitting U.N. troops.
Prior to the Syrian civil war, the border with Lebanon and Iran’s ability to move within the country was at least theoretically limited by the Assad regime. Today, in the chaos of Assad’s fight to survive and the life-or-death struggle between Al-Qaeda-allied terrorists and the Iran/Hezbollah terror axis (if it were a soccer match, you’d root for the stadium to collapse), the border has become totally uncontrolled.
But, if the chaotic situation in Syria makes the border more porous, it also allows Israel to act with diminished potential for repercussions. Assad, Hezbollah, and Lebanon don’t have bandwidth to look cross-eyed at Israel right now. And that means that Israel can risk doing what they did earlier this week: take out a convoy that probably was shipping weapons.
But Israel can’t police a foreign border perfectly or permanently. And, with Iran developing more advanced…Read More » Comments (13) »
Wednesday, February 26th, 2014 at 8:22 AM | Stand For Israel
In light of the attack earlier this week by Israel against (probably) an arms shipment inside Lebanon, Hezbollah has some face to save. Avi Issacharoff writes that, because the Iranian client terror group that controls much of Lebanon isn’t in a position to get into a fight with Israel, they’ll save face by pretending that nothing or not much happened:
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This is how Hezbollah’s media operates. The late hour of the incident and its location, in a mountainous area right on the border, gave Hezbollah room to smudge the details of what exactly happened, and avoid the question many people are asking today in Lebanon: Did the missiles strike a target inside Lebanon or not?
Wednesday, February 26th, 2014 at 8:13 AM | Stand For Israel
Writing at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, retired Israeli Brigadier General Shimon Shapira wonders if the ongoing debate inside Iran on the expenditure on behalf of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad is a portent of an upcoming Iranian disengagement from civil war-torn Syria in the form of pulling out Iran’s client terror organization, Hezbollah:
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Although Hezbollah’s leaders claim it is fighting in Syria in order to protect Lebanon, Lebanese Shiites are not convinced and Hezbollah’s supporters are dubious. Hezbollah has now lost almost 350 men in Syria, not all of whom have been brought back to Lebanon for burial, while the number of wounded has passed a thousand. This puts into question Hezbollah’s ability to keep sacrificing its fighters in Syria when its target of jihad is Israel.
Wednesday, January 29th, 2014 at 8:35 AM | Stand For Israel
The incomparable Walter Russell Mead says that the anti-terrorism talking points spouted by a senior Iranian official while visiting Hezbollah this week signal Iran’s desire to appear “moderate” to Westerners in order not to jeopardize their rush to bail on promises to keep Iran from going nuclear:
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While officials from the P5+1 countries congratulate each other on an “interim agreement” and a “temporary freeze” on Iran’s nuclear enrichment program, the Iranian negotiating team claims that there is a secret side deal with details on Iran’s right to continue nuclear development over the next few months.
Wednesday, January 15th, 2014 at 8:33 AM | Stand For Israel
Hit by a series of recent bombings, Beirut was struck by another explosion today that killed at least two people and left others wounded. The Jerusalem Post reports that the latest incident occurred in the southern part of the Lebanese capital:
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A powerful explosion struck southern Beirut on Thursday, a stronghold of the Shi’ite group Hezbollah, killing at least two people and sending a column of smoke into the sky, a witness said.
Thursday, January 2nd, 2014 at 9:29 AM | Stand For Israel
Responding to today’s rocket attacks on Israel from Lebanon, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu said:
“What is happening in Lebanon is that Hezbollah is stationing thousands of missiles and rockets in apartments, in the heart of the civilian population, and is thus perpetrating two war crimes simultaneously. It is organizing the firing at civilians, just as it did today, and it is hiding behind civilians as human shields … This is a double war crime that that is being perpetrated under the aegis of the Lebanese government and army, which are not lifting a finger to prevent this arming and these crimes. We hold the Lebanese government responsible for this development.”
There’s more on this volatile and dangerous situation on the IDF blog. Please, keep the people of Israel in your prayers today.
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Sunday, December 29th, 2013 at 8:07 AM | Stand For Israel
A bombing in Beirut killed Mohamad Chatah, advisor to Lebanon’s former prime minister, Saad al-Hariri. Four others were killed along with Chatah — a vocal critic of both Hezbollah and Syrian President Bashar Assad — when the car carrying them was destroyed by an explosion. Hariri blamed Hezbollah for the bombing:
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“As far as we are concerned the suspects … are those who are fleeing international justice and refusing to represent themselves before the international tribunal,” Hariri said, referring to five Hezbollah suspects indicted for the 2005 killing of his father.
Friday, December 27th, 2013 at 10:49 AM | Stand For Israel
A Lebanese army sniper killed an Israeli soldier near the border fence near Rosh Hanikra on Sunday night.
An initial IDF assessment, based on data from lookout positions on the border, found shots were fired by a soldier from the Lebanese Armed Forces who apparently was acting alone.
Six to seven shots were fired at the IDF soldier who was standing on a road adjacent to the electronic border fence with Lebanon.
Please pray for the loved ones of the solider who was killed, and for the safety of all the brave men and women of the IDF who put their lives at risk every day defending their country.Comments (1) »
Sunday, December 15th, 2013 at 5:39 PM | Stand For Israel
We disagree with Hussein Ibish on most of the particulars in the Middle East, but he is no terrorist apologist and his viewpoint is usually worth a look – especially when he isn’t talking about Israel or the United States. Here, Ibish dissects the debilitating impact that Bashar al-Assad’s Syria and the terrorists of Hezbollah have had on Lebanon:
In fact the Lebanese political crisis – fuelled, if not created, by the Syrian conflict – is perhaps even more alarming than the spillover of physical violence seen thus far. The Lebanese state is experiencing a degree of fragmentation and disarray that is, for its institutions, at least as severe as what happened in the worst periods of the civil war. The spillover thus threatening the equilibrium of unstable elements that has held Lebanon together, more or less, in recent years.
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Tuesday, October 29th, 2013 at 9:10 AM | Stand For Israel