PM responds following threats from Hezbollah’s head on Friday; Nasrallah claims missiles can reach Eilat, Hezbollah can bring Israel to “brink of destruction”; Netanyahu: If Hezbollah dares to do some foolish thing and attack Israel, we will strike a crushing military blow on Lebanon and Hezbollah.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded to threats from Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah from Friday that the next war with Israel would lead it to the “brink of extinction,” vowing a “crushing military blow” to any “nonsense” or attacks on Israel.
During an interview with Lebanese TV station Al-Manar, Nasrallah announced that any future war with Israel would be “bigger than the 2006 war… and it will put it on the brink of extinction,” referring to the Second Lebanon War (2006 Lebanon War). He claimed the terror organization Hezbollah has “a larger number of missiles and we have precise missiles that we did not have in 2006. We also have larger and [more] powerful drones.”
Nasrallah, as with the majority of his interviews and televised addresses, made several threats on the “Zionists”, claiming its missiles could reach as far south as Eilat, that “Iran is able to bombard Israel with ferocity and force,” and that “Hezbollah at minimum is capable of inflicting huge destruction upon the Zionist entity.” He also announced that Hezbollah forces in Syria had been cut down, reporting, “There are no regions in Syria that we have fully emptied out, but there is no need for the numbers to stay the same. We reduced the forces based on the needs of the current situation.”
The Israel Defense Forces have been targeting and thwarting Iranian-backed terror in Syria through hundreds of covert operations and airstrikes. Many of the strikes target weapons shipments to Hezbollah and Hezbollah military sites in Syria.
During his weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem on Sunday morning, Prime Minister Netanyahu responded to Nasrallah’s claims, warning “Over the weekend we heard Nasrallah’s remarks on his attack plans. It should be clear that if Hezbollah dares to do some nonsense and attacks Israel, we will hit him and Lebanon with a crushing military blow.” He added, “In contrast to Nasrallah, I do not intend to detail our plans. It is enough to recall that Nasrallah had- for years – dug terrorist tunnels, which we destroyed within days.
The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) destroyed the last Iran-backed, Hezbollah cross-border terror tunnel entering Israeli territory in June. The tunnel was the longest discovered during Israel’s Operation Northern Shield which started in December of 2018. The tunnel was 260 ft deep and ran over 2,500 ft long. The depth of the tunnel was that of a 22-story building and was equipped with electricity and communications equipment, including phones, as well as water pipes, ventilation systems, and much more.
The tunnel network, which was funded and supported directly by Iran to be used to attack Israel, had been under IDF surveillance since the 2006 Lebanon War. Hezbollah had planned to use its tunnels to carry out a massacre on the Israeli town of Metulla to be “followed by a full-scale missile assault and ground invasion.” The tunnels, which were confirmed by the UN peacekeeping forces, UNIFIL, are in violation of international law. Specifically, UN Security Council Resolution 1701 established following the 2006 Lebanon War.