The heightened state of alert along Israel’s northern border with Lebanon persists. The Israeli security establishment’s working assessment is that Hezbollah is still planning a cross-border attack against the Jewish State in retaliation for the death of one of its operatives in an aerial bombardment that was carried out in Syria last week which was ascribed to the Israeli Air Force. In light of the working situation assessment; the IDF spokesperson’s unit released a statement in which it announced “the Northern Command will be reinforced with advanced fire capabilities, intelligence collection systems and special units.” In tandem, the Jerusalem leadership is sending a clear message to Hezbollah and its patrons in Tehran; ‘Israel is not deterred. It will continue to operate against Iranian efforts to entrench militarily in Israel’s region. The Israel Defense Forces are well prepared for any scenario.
During a high-level meeting of Israel’s top military brass in the IDF’ Northern Command, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu received a comprehensive intelligence and operational briefing from IDF Chief of Staff Lieutenant General Aviv Kochavi. Consequently, Netanyahu highlighted that the heightened tensions are a direct result of Iranian efforts to entrench militarily along Israel’s northern front – in both Lebanon and Syria. “I am under the impression that the IDF is well prepared for any possible scenario. We continue to operate in order to thwart Iran’s military entrenchment in our region. We will do everything necessary to protect ourselves. And I suggest to Hezbollah to take into account this simple fact: Israel is prepared for any scenario,” Netanyahu said to the forum of military generals.
While Lebanon and Syria are seemingly “hostages” of Iran’s malign activities, Jerusalem has apparently altered its overt strategic outline. ‘If the Jewish State is drawn into a wide-scale confrontation with Tehran’s proxies in Israel’s immediate vicinity – the Islamic Republic will not be spared from the IDF’s wide-ranging capabilities.’ Speaking from the Nevatim Air Force base at the backdrop of an advanced Adir F-35 fighter-jet alternate Premier and Defense Minister Benny Gantz stressed “I suggest to all the countries of the region — near and far, Iran, Lebanon, Syria and anyone involved in this story (northern tensions) — remember that the State of Israel has infinite capacity and we know how to use it.”
It is important to note that the Beirut government is subject to an increase of domestic criticism over the situation on its southern front with Israel – at a time when Lebanon is faced with wide-ranging social and economic challenges. While the country’s technocrat Prime Minister Hassan Diab – a political-ally of the Lebanese Iranian-proxy Hezbollah – claimed the “dangerous escalation” on Lebanon’s southern front to be “part of Israeli hostilities against Lebanese sovereignty;” the leader of a major Christian group in Lebanon LFP Chairperson Samir Geagea boldly asserted in an interview with the Associated Press that Monday’s incident along the border with Israel was a clear indication that the current Beirut government is not the sovereignty within its own southern territories.