'All of Lebanon is now South Lebanon'
Jonathan Schanzer reports that the next war between Israel and Lebanon is a question of when, not if, and that it's likely to be very bloody
Today, by leveraging its military power in the Lebanese political
arena, Hezbollah is now in control of the government. In the process, it
has spread its influence from beyond Lebanon's south and the eastern
Beqaa Valley. Indeed, the Israelis warn that Hezbollah has installed
rocket silos and weapons caches throughout the country.
The exact number of rockets in Hezbollah's hands right now is not
known. Conservative estimates indicate that it's around 60,000. And
Israel's military establishment is keenly aware that it's not a question
of if Hezbollah will use them, it's a question of when.
In all likelihood, whenever Iran wishes to make war – in retaliation
for Israel's recent air strikes against the convoy in Syria, in response
to a perceived threat against the Iranian nuclear program, or for any
other reason – Hezbollah will likely be the actor to prompt it.
Israelis say that this war could be very costly in terms damage to
Israel, particularly if longer-range rockets target Haifa, Tel Aviv, and
other high-density cities. But the Israelis are also nervous about how
the war will impact Lebanon. Given the way Hezbollah has reportedly
squirreled away its ordnance in heavily populated areas, even Israeli
surgical strikes will almost certainly yield mass casualties. Lebanese
citizens are reportedly aware of this, and the anxiety level is rising
"The world needs to be prepared for the next war with Lebanon," the
aforementioned senior official told me in Jerusalem. "It could be a very
What could go wrong?
Labels: Hezbullah, human shields, Lebanon