Kochavi warns of future war and need to prepare; Addresses Syria and shifting challenges in the north
IDF Northern Command Major General Aviv Kochavi warned that Israel must prepare for the next war in the north. In a speech during a ceremony remembering those who fell during the Second Lebanon War in 2006, Kochavi addressed the changes in the region, emphasizing, “The Northern theater is undergoing a radical change, and the emerging trends involve negative developments… Alongside Shiite extremism, the global jihad is spreading in the Syrian arena and the global jihad is spreading in the Golan Heights. This is infusing the Middle East with religious wars.”
He spoke of Syria that, “The Syrian border has become the scene of terrorist activity against the state of Israel, the strengthening of the enemy with missiles and rockets continues, and Iran, which is increasing its presence in the region, is equipping our enemies and is directing them to attack us.”
He stated that “We should not draw conclusions from a temporary period in which states and terrorist organizations are busy with one another, and one shouldn’t devise a strategy or plan the building of military force in light of the present deceptive, transient and unstable situation… The situation can change abruptly. We must prepare our forces for war, both on the Lebanese front and on the eastern front, and we will establish against them a sharp and decisive response, whose results will be clear and unequivocal.”
Just last week, Israel held a week-long, nation-wide drills preparing in the event there is a three-front attack on Israel. Also last week, Hassan Nasrallah, head of the Lebanese Shiite terrorist organization Hezbollah, warned Israel of the consequences of a war with Lebanon. Speaking in Beirut, Nasrallah stated “I clearly say to Israel: the Resistance [Hezbollah] threatens to displace millions of Israelis in the next war if imposed on Lebanon. If you push 1.5 Lebanese from their homes, the Islamic resistance in Lebanon will force millions of Israelis from their homes…We are not afraid of your war or of your threats.
He added, “If you assume that we are busy in Syria, then you are wrong because this changes nothing in how we deal with our enemy.” His remarks on Syria come after reports that the Israeli Air Force conducted two airstrikes on the Syrian-Lebanese border last Tuesday. Both Israeli media and Hezbollah denied the attacks, the IDF refusing to comment.