The Iran-backed terrorist group Hezbollah warned that fighting during a future war with Israel “will reach the Galilee,” Israel Hayom reported on Sunday, citing Foreign Policy.
“In the next war, Hezbollah won’t stay on the borders, and the Israeli settlements in the north will not be protected from this,” said a source close to the terrorist group. “Hezbollah will bring the war to them, and Israel’s biggest concern is over Hezbollah’s experience in Syria, as it now has the experience to be offensive rather than just defensive.”
Another Hezbollah official warned that if Israel and Hezbollah fight again, “the resistance won’t stay in Lebanon; it will reach the Galilee.”
According to Jeffrey White, a fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, “Now Hezbollah has the ability to strike guided munitions across Israel; they can hit targets inside Israel — including central and southern areas — with increased accuracy, including command posts, airfields, and major economic targets.”
White pointed to Hezbollah’s acquisition of new air-defense systems and Yakhont cruise missiles, which may pose a threat to Israel’s air force and enable Hezbollah to strike Israel’s oil platforms. (During its 2006 war with Israel, Hezbollah fired nearly 3800 rockets into Israel, threatening the hundreds of thousands of Israelis living in the country’s north.)
However, both outside experts and sources inside Hezbollah said that it is unlikely that the terror group would attack Israel right now, both due to its current efforts in Syria and the political situation in Lebanon.
During a meeting with Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah in August, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif boasted that the nuclear deal presented “a historic opportunity” to confront Israel. Before the deal was completed, former Iranian president Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, an ally of current president Hassan Rouhani, said that Israel feared the agreement because it would strengthen Iran. He added that one day Israel would be “wiped off the map.”
Haaretz military correspondent Amos Harel predicted last August that Iran-backed attacks by Hezbollah from Syria would increase in the wake of the nuclear deal.
An Israeli defense official told The New York Times in May that the buildup of Hezbollah’s terror infrastructure in southern Lebanese villages meant that “civilians are living in a military compound,” and that their lives were at risk. A few days later, a newspaper linked to Hezbollah confirmed the Israeli assessment.
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