Israel Would Not Win War with Hezbollah – US Intelligence

Hezbollah fighters during a military drill at the border with Israel. (Photo: Supplied)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

According to the Washington Post, US officials have privately warned Netanyahu against opening a second front in Lebanon.

A secret assessment from the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) in Washington has found that Israeli forces would find it “difficult to succeed” in a two-front war against Hamas in Gaza and Hezbollah in Lebanon, the Washington Post reported on Sunday.

Since the start of the Israeli war on Gaza, on October 7, the Lebanese Resistance movement Hezbollah has engaged directly, but relatively in a limited way in the war against the Israeli occupation.

However, following the assassination of the deputy head of the political bureau of the Islamic Resistance Movement Hamas, Saleh al-Arouri, in Beirut, Hezbollah leader, Hassan Nasrallah, said that “a response is inevitable”. 

Hezbollah Commences Retaliation for Arouri’s Murder with Attack on ‘Meron’ – VIDEO

Nasrallah said in a televised speech on Friday, for the second time in days, that Hezbollah cannot remain silent about a breach of this level, stressing that the lack of response makes all of Lebanon exposed.

He pointed out that Hezbollah fighters have carried out about 670 military operations on the Lebanese border with Israel since October 8, one day after the Al-Aqsa Flood operation.

For his part, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has promised to make a “fundamental change” to the security situation along the Lebanese-Israeli border.

According to the Washington Post, however, US officials have privately warned Netanyahu against opening a second front.

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“If it were to do so, a new secret assessment from the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) found that it will be difficult for Israel Defense Forces (IDF) to succeed because its military assets and resources would be spread too thin given the conflict in Gaza,” citing two anonymous officials and a classified report by the DIA.

“Officials fear that a full-scale conflict between Israel and Lebanon would surpass the bloodshed of the 2006 Israel-Lebanon war on account of Hezbollah’s substantially larger arsenal of long-range and precision weaponry,” the paper stated, citing officials who also warned that the group could target “sensitive targets like petrochemical plants and nuclear reactors”.

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Additionally, the US is concerned that a further escalation could draw “Iran (…) and other proxy forces into the conflict – an eventuality that could compel the United States to respond militarily on Israel’s behalf.”

“Within the (US) administration, there are differing perceptions about Netanyahu’s interest in a negotiated resolution to the Hezbollah conflict,” the Washington Post reported, adding that some US officials think that “if the Gaza war ends tomorrow, Netanyahu’s political career will end with it, incentivizing him to broaden the conflict.”

The Israeli leader faced widespread protests before the start of the war, and recent polls show that his popularity has dropped. 

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Washington also fears that such a conflict could draw in Iran – Hezbollah’s principal backer – and eventually the US, the paper’s sources said. 

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken arrived in Jordan on Sunday, ahead of visits to Israel, the West Bank, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Egypt. 

“We have an intense focus on preventing this conflict from spreading,” he reportedly said, before meeting Jordanian King Abdullah II and Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi.

(PC, RT)

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