THE BLOG
01/20/2015 09:11 am ET Updated Mar 21, 2015

Hezbollah and Israel: Mounting Tension

A few days ago, Sheik Nasrallah of Hezbollah gave an unusual speech in which he issued the regular load of threats against Israel, plus a new one, saying that in the next confrontation with Israel, his fighters will occupy Galilee. No less. This was a speech given by the same self-styled hero who rarely gets out of his well-defended bunker in Beirut, where he has been in hiding since the end of the summer 2006 war with Israel. This Sheik will like people in the Middle East to consider him the current Abu Ali [a mythological folk hero], but somehow that title does not stick to him.

A while ago, the Shi'ite "hero" had to admit that a very senior member of the organization was found to be an Israeli agent; and beforehand, in fact until this very day, the Lebanese press publishes the names of Hezbollah fighters killed in Syria while in battle against the anti-Assad Sunni rebels. There also are very consistent reports that Iran is dramatically cutting down its lavish financial support to the Lebanese terrorists, at a time when intelligence services in South America are intensifying their monitoring of Hezbollah in a region considered hitherto a recruiting ground among the large community of Lebanese immigrants. Put in sum, the terror organization seems to be in trouble, and what is more common in the Middle East than to channel all feelings of frustration towards the "Zionist" enemy? A few days ago, a former senior Israeli intelligence officer said in public that Hezbollah does plan to move from rhetoric to action, and they may provoke troubles against Israel in both the Golan Heights and South Lebanon.

Twenty-four hours ago at the time of this writing, 12 terrorists were killed in the Golan Heights, very close to the border with Israel, an area nominally under Bashar Assad's control; practically, as it is in most regions of Syria, a no-man's land, as the fighting between the rebels and the Alawite-Shi'ite regime in Damascus is raging relentlessly. No one claimed responsibility for the aerial attack in the Golan, but Hezbollah was quick to blame Israel, admitting that six of the dead were senior operatives, including the son of the notorious terrorist Imad Mughniyyeh, a man responsible to the killing of hundreds of Americans [Beirut 1983], who was himself eliminated a few years ago, allegedly by Israel. Then it was the turn of Iran to admit that also six Iranians were killed, among them a general in the Revolutionary Guards. Clearly, the attack raises the possibility that the heroic Sheik in Beirut has no clue as to how deep has been the intelligence penetration of his organization, even though he just boasted that he put an end to it with the arrest of the alleged senior Israeli spy, but his lieutenants have already started the ritual of threats against Israel.

It is here where some questions need to be asked. First, what is the business of an Iranian general being along the Syrian-Israeli border? The simple answer is that he has no business being there, other than inspecting the next arena of Iranian aggression against Israel, on top of encouraging anti-Jewish terrorism around the world [today, the Argentinian Prosecutor General was found dead in his home, hours before he was supposed to testify in the Argentinian parliament, that his President connived with Iran to cover up the latter's involvement in the Buenos Aires bombing in 1994], and developing the nuclear program. Hopefully the western negotiators with Iran will take into account the Iranian involvement in the Golan Heights, before they issue any certificate of "realism" and "moderation" to the Islamic Republic.

A second question is, what is the business of Hezbollah, a Lebanese organization, being in the Golan Heights, planning attacks against Israel? Again, the answer is that they have no business being there, other than following the commands of their Iranian masters to open another Islamic front against Israel. As was widely discussed in this blog, Hezbollah's involvement in the Syrian civil war is a clear proof that this is not a real, patriotic Lebanese organization, but rather an offshoot of the Islamic Republic's Shi'ite-oriented expansion plans.

Many in Lebanon already understand it, and that leads us to the third question.

What can the Lebanese state do against an organization which is a state within a state, armed to the teeth, and one whose aggression and provocations could drag Lebanon into another calamitous tragedy of destruction caused by those who serve the interests of others. The answer is, judging by the inaction until now, perhaps nothing, though on paper, the Lebanese Army, which is the only legally-armed power in the country, should be the protector of its national defense and interests. This is where we get back to Hezbollah and their threats. They issued an announcement that their retaliation will be "painful," but "measured." Go figure what is "measured" in the minds of the terrorists, but with Hezbollah involved, it is strongly advisable to be on the alert. The Israelis say they are, hopefully the Lebanese as well.