Israel trapped by Hezbollah, fear of greater conflict

Last Updated on June 16, 2024 5:24 pm

Hezbollah, the Iran-backed Islamist group in Israel and Lebanon, has been increasingly attacking the border. As a result, the risk of conflict is increasing. The Israeli army has warned of a large-scale operation due to the conflict. The conflict between the two sides has been going on for eight months but has recently intensified. With this, there is a regular conflict with Hamas. As a result, the Israeli forces have to deal with both sides.

According to experts, Israel can no longer afford to ignore its northern front and needs to take immediate action there.

Lebanon and Israel have been officially at war for decades. In 1982, Israel invaded Lebanon and sent tanks to the capital, Beirut. Israel did this after an attack by Palestinian fighters in Lebanon. After 22 years, southern Lebanon was occupied by Israel. There, Hezbollah resisted Israel and expelled Israel from the area.

Hezbollah is an Iranian-backed Lebanese movement. The group has one of the most powerful paramilitary forces in the Middle East. They are committed to resisting Israel and Beirut considers Israel an enemy state. Hezbollah is often considered a terrorist organization in the Western world.

The recent hostilities between Israel and Hezbollah began when Hamas attacked Israel on October 7, killing 1,200 people and abducting 250. Israel then launched a war against Hamas in Gaza. More than 37,000 Palestinians have already been killed in this war. Hezbollah says it is fighting Israel in support of the Palestinians in Gaza. Since October 7, the conflict between Israel and Hezbollah has been increasing. As the number and size of conflicts increase, the threat of war increases.

Heiko Wimen, director of the International Crisis Group’s Iraq, Syria and Lebanon project, said it was a slow-burning escalation that continued to escalate. The number of casualties on both sides along the border and the type of weapons used by Hezbollah have increased significantly.

This conflict has seen the use of new types of weapons. On June 8, Hezbollah fired an Iranian-made Falak 3 rocket into northern Israel for the first time. Falak 2 is an improved version of the earlier Falak 1. It has longer range and larger warheads.

The Israeli army has used an ancient weapon ‘catapult’ on the northern border of Israel. It has been rarely used by the military since the 16th century. It fired fireballs and burned mangrove forests in Lebanese territory. According to Israeli state broadcaster Kan, it was a local initiative and not widely used.

Both sides have been making strong statements. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said, “If anyone thinks they can harm us and we will remain silent, they are mistaken.” Either way we will bring security back to the North.

Hezbollah’s second-in-command, Naim Qassem, told Al Jazeera, “We are not seeking all-out war.” But if it is thrust upon us, we are ready and will not back down.

Experts say neither side may want to start an all-out war. But their provocative actions can provoke a conflict at any time.

Many homes have been evacuated due to rocket attacks in the Galilee region of Israel. Israel’s right-wing National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gavir said all Hezbollah strongholds must be burned down. Battle! The US has warned of rising tensions. State Department spokesman Matthew Miller said the US is concerned about the risk of the situation spiraling out of control. Long-standing tensions in the Gulf region have reached new heights and, according to experts, more conflict seems inevitable.

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