BLOG 239 February 9, 2015
You may have picked up from the media that Israel made an air strike on Hezbollah in Syria that killed senior Hezbollah officials, six Iranians, and an Iranian general. What was a general from Iran doing in Syria with this terrorist group? You got it! If we didin’t know before, that’s a clear picture of how Iran is financing and directing Hezbollah as well as other terrorists groups.
General Muhammad Allahdadi was from the Revolutionary guard, the right wing military force inside Iran. It is believed that Allahdadi was planning deadly cross the border assaults against Israel. Jihad Mughniyeh, who was also killed, was known as a ruthless terrorist who had the direct backing of Iran. The head of Hezbollah’s operations in Syria and Iraq was also killed.
Currently, Northern Israel is on high alert. Revolutionary Guard chief General Muhammad Ali Jafri warned they will fight to the end until “this epitome of vice” (Israel) is destroyed –meaning Hezbollah will strike back –sometime. The military promised “ruinous thunderbolts” would fall on Israel. Of course, Israel is also blamed for all terrorism in the Middle East. No surprise there.
The question remains where and when Hezbollah will strike. The current situation signals that adherence to the 2006 Second Lebanon War agreement is wearing thin. If the terrorist group make a minor attack, Israel will respond tit-for-tat and that would probably conclude the current situation. A much larger assault and Israel would undoubtedly attack inside Lebanon. In that circumstance, all bets are off.
Can Hezbollah stand such an assault after the serious defeat Hamas suffered in the recent Gaza war. Even though the Hamas leaders are wealthy from the money flowing into their pockets that was meant for Hamas, the organization is in serious trouble and losing ground in Gaza. Does Hezbollah want to risk the same defeat?
Hard to say.
Hezbollah is much larger, better equipped, and now better financed than Hamas was, but they are also strung out over Syria. Should Israel hit them full force, it might wreck their war machine in Syria. In such case, Israel would be hurting the Assad regime. Would they do that? It is known that Israel prefers the devil they know to one unknown and many of the rebels fighting Assad are worse than he is. What a tangled mess the Middle East has become!
Again, Hezbollah could be taking a significant risk if they attempt to reach across the border as Israel would not hesitate to respond. The situation remains highly explosive and could ignite more regional conflict.
More is definitely to come.