IDF official: Major flare-up on northern border almost certain
“The northern border could see a resumption of full-fledged hostilities,” says senior IDF officer.
A supporter of Hezbollah gestures as he holds a Hezbollah flag in Marjayoun, Lebanon | Photo: Reuters/Aziz Taher/File
The Israel Defense Force noted on Thursday that Israel and Iranian-backed Shi’ite terrorist group Hezbollah were on the brink of a major flare-up in 2020 and that trend could very well continue into the new year.
A senior official in the IDF Northern Command told Israel Hayom that Hezbollah was very likely to try and perpetuate a cross-border attack in the near term, and that Israelis should consider the possibility that this path was inevitable.
The official noted that the IDF will retaliate forcefully to such Hezbollah provocations.
The organization tried to perpetrate several attacks in 2020, including in the Shebaa Farms region that it claims to be Lebanese despite being captured from Syria in 1967 Six-Day War, as well as near a Western Galilee kibbutz that sits on the border.
Both instances were in response to what Hezbollah said was Israeli aggression, despite Israel claiming otherwise.
“The northern border could see a resumption of full-fledged hostilities,” the official said.
“I am sure that we will see some incident that will eclipse the Shebaa Farms event, which could result in fatalities. There is a high probability of this materializing, and this requires all of us to prepare accordingly; the chances of a sudden escalation is increasing steadily.”
Officials in the IDF say the worrying trajectory can be traced to September 2019, when Hezbollah fired antitank missiles on an Israeli vehicle.
Later, this summer, Hezbollah tried to kill Israeli troops in two separate occasions, creating a drastic increase in tensions. In recent months, Israeli commandos have been active on the northern border and overall trooplevels have been increased.
“The events are still very much ongoing – we have maintained our high-state of readiness since,” the official said.
He added a warning: “We can identify anyone who breaches the border; violating our sovereignty will be treated accordingly and we are ready for any event.
We are well aware of Hezbollah’s efforts to surprise us. We are Israel’s breakwater, and those who try to hurt us – from Iran to Syria – will be met with a strong adversary.”
Israel Hayom Newspaper
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