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Israels coming war with Hezbollah -CFR watch

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    An interesting piece on the evolving tension between the regions two powers from the cfr.
    I call them the regions two powers because like it or not Hezbollah is the only fighting force to beat Israel, twice - in 2000 and again in 2006.
    That aside though i'm not sure what to make of this piece in that it seems to me to be doing little but following the same old line of talking up a conflict. It is a well written piece it must be said I simply find the authors take on the facts to be questionable.
    Either way another war is without a doubt the last thing either side want or need right now. As was pointed out in the article the party of god is tired from its engagements in Syria and as I pointed out the Israelis are loath to start a fight they cannot win. By this I dont just mean militarily but also publicly - the only way they can defeat Hezbollah is to utterly destroy Lebanon, nothing short of that will cut it. In previous attempts Israel has caused thousands of civilian casualties [ironically enough boosting Hezbollahs appeal] a new attempt will be infinitely more devastating.
    This is also leaving aside the fact that Hezbollah has entrenched itself firmly along the boarder and has, by all estimates, vastly increased its arsenal which can happily strike most of Israel. Not to mention their very public threat to strike Israeli nuclear and chemical facilities i.e. a WMD via proxy.


    Another war between Israel and Hezbollah is almost inevitable. Although neither side wants a conflict now, the shifting balance of power in the Levant and shrinking areas of contestation are indicators of a looming showdown. The real questions are how and where—not if—the impending conflagration will occur.
    The events of February 10 underscored the Levant’s instability. Israel shot down an Iranian drone that flew into its airspace and bombed the site in Syria from which the drone had allegedly been launched; during the latter mission, Syrian antiaircraft fire downed an Israeli F-16, the first Israeli fighter to be shot down by enemy fire in decades. Israel responded with massive retaliation against a slew of Iranian and regime-affiliated military targets in Syria.
    Tensions in the region are only going to get worse. The Syrian civil war has so far resulted in nearly half a million dead, six million internally displaced, and over five million refugees, an overwhelming percentage of whom have now spent years in neighboring countries such as Lebanon and Jordan, which are eager for their swift departure. Yet as the fight against the Islamic State (ISIS) winds down militarily, so too will the many marriages of convenience among its enemies. These impending divorces will return a number of issues to the foreground, including governance and reconciliation, the future of outside powers in Syria, and the shifting regional balance of power. The resulting tensions are likely to bring Israel to the brink of a regional war even bigger than the last one in 2006, when it invaded southern Lebanon.

    For Israel and Hezbollah, the defeat of ISIS and the resulting shifts in focus will clarify the increasingly complex and dangerous relations between them. Hezbollah has lost nearly 2,000 fighters in Syria, damaged its reputation through unfettered support for the regimes in Iran and Syria, and is rumored to face financial trouble. Despite all that, it remains popular with its core constituency, Lebanese Shiites. It has brokered political agreements with other confessions in Lebanon, and analysts expect that the Lebanese parliamentary elections this spring—the first under a new electoral law creating a proportional representation system—will result in big wins for Hezbollah.
    Hezbollah’s military capabilities have almost surely grown during the Syrian war, as evidenced by the 100 or so strikes that Israel has made on Hezbollah personnel or facilities in recent years. Perhaps most meaningful, Hezbollah has gained substantial operational experience in Syria, where it has effectively knit together a number of violent nonstate actors in support of its expeditionary mission to prop up President Bashar al-Assad. Indeed, it is hard to find an actor in the region who hasn’t been impressed by Hezbollah’s performance in the Syrian war. These efforts, coupled with Hezbollah’s ominous threats to attack the alleged Israeli nuclear reactor at Dimona and its ammonia storage facilities in Haifa, portend a foul fight.
    For Israel, the strategic picture has shifted considerably as well. Its border with Syria, historically its quietest, is now unhinged. The Israeli leadership has made no secret of its concern about Hezbollah’s military maturation in the Syria conflict. And as worries about a nuclear weapons–capable Iran fade, Israel has begun to focuse instead on the next war with Hezbollah, as a massive military exercise a few months ago—the largest in Israel since 1998—recently demonstrated. Since 2006, Israeli officials have repeatedly warned that in future conflicts they will follow the Dahiya Doctrine, named for Hezbollah’s stronghold in the southern Beirut suburbs near Beirut–Rafic Hariri International Airport, which was devastated by Israeli bombing in the last war. According to Gadi Eizenkot, the Israel Defense Forces chief of staff, in the next conflict the IDF will follow these same rules of engagement but across a broader landscape.


    Hezbollah’s and Israel’s long-term strategic goals are thus entirely at odds. Nevertheless, as of today, neither Hezbollah nor Israel wants to trigger a war. Israel is facing the potential collapse of the Palestinian Authority, a humanitarian crisis in Gaza, and profound instability on its northern border, to say nothing of the political crisis surrounding Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who may soon be indicted for corruption. Nevertheless, concerns about Hezbollah’s growing capabilities inside Lebanon—namely, its potential construction of weapons factories—may leave the Israeli leadership feeling that it has no choice but to act.

    Hezbollah, for its part, would also probably like time to recover from a long and hard conflict in Syria. Yet the group’s regional popularity has plummeted, and its anti-Israel credentials, which have been tarnished by years of killing Syrians, need burnishing. Perhaps some of its newfound partners in Syria would even be willing to assist in the next war with Israel, as at least two Iraqi militia leaders have suggested in recent months. And as the Assad regime consolidates its hold, Hezbollah’s attention will increasingly be drawn away from Syria.
    A deliberate escalation by Israel or Hezbollah is unlikely to occur in the near term; an inadvertent one, however, is possible, as is an escalation courtesy of other actors currently tearing up the Levant, such as Iran, the Assad regime, or Russia. All three could benefit in different ways from such a conflict. Iran and the Assad regime could use it to distract from the horrific state of affairs in Syria while rallying regional support against Israel. The Russians could use a conflict to solidify their regional leadership role by brokering a cessation of hostilities and to further demonstrate their entrenchment vis-à-vis the United States. At a very tactical level, the narrowing battlefield in Syria almost surely will facilitate an inadvertent mishap among some combination of these actors. How they choose to respond will be crucial, but it is less predictable as the rules of engagement have become murkier. A further question is the location of a future war. Historically, conflicts between Israel and Hezbollah have largely—though not entirely—been confined to Lebanese territory. Since 1978, Israel’s invasions of and sporadic attacks on Lebanon have targeted violent nonstate actors who destabilized its northern border, including the Palestine Liberation Organization and Hezbollah. Hezbollah, however, has occasionally sought to take the conflict to Israel’s citizens overseas (and Jewish communities more broadly). A few notable examples include the 1992 Israeli embassy bombing in Buenos Aires, the 2012 bus attack on Israeli tourists in Bulgaria, and a foiled 2015 attack on Jewish and Israeli sites in Cyprus.The next conflict will also probably be fought within Lebanon, although it will likely go beyond southern Lebanon into Beirut. It will also, given the Dahiya Doctrine, involve the destruction of much more than just alleged Hezbollah military targets—the IDF could easily destroy Lebanese state infrastructure and military sites as well. And it is difficult to imagine how an Israeli effort to bring ruin to Hezbollah inside Lebanon would not similarly bring it to scores of Lebanese civilians. For its part, Hezbollah is no doubt counting on the international condemnation of Israel that will invariably arise in such a situation.Unlike past conflicts, however, a new round of Israeli-Hezbollah fighting could involve military operations in Syria, too. Since the beginning of the Syrian war, Israeli air strikes against Hezbollah have been largely confined to Syrian territory, and to date, Hezbollah has mostly refrained from responding. Yet the group’s entrenchment inside Syria has made that territory vulnerable to further attacks by Israel. Israeli planners will be paying careful attention to how the group’s presence in Syria continues to evolve as Assad’s dependence on it decreases; they will also note Hezbollah’s location, its weapons, the number of its personnel, and the extent of its infrastructure in Syria, particularly in southwest Syria near the Israeli border. Netanyahu has warned that Iran cannot “entrench itself militarily in Syria,” but the real debate will be over the extent of this entrenchment—such as how close Iranian and Hezbollah personnel can be to the Israeli border—not whether it exists at all
    Although the next Israeli-Hezbollah war remains on the horizon for now, it is almost certain to occur eventually, given both the risks of accidental escalation and the two sides’ long-term strategic goals. When it does happen, it will be ugly and will almost surely drag in external actors, willingly or not. Levantine security may then reach a new nadir, and the Lebanese and Syrian people will lose even more as their countries are further turned into playgrounds for others’ agendas
    https://www.foreignaffairs.com/artic...-war-hezbollah
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    **** Hezbollah
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    (Original post by jsk800)
    **** Hezbollah
    Might one ask why '**** Hizbollah' ? Do you actually know anything about them?
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    Do you? Money spent digging tunnels instead of looking after there own people who are sick, and have a low standard of living
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    (Original post by jsk800)
    Do you? Money spent digging tunnels instead of looking after there own people who are sick, and have a low standard of living
    Are you confusing Hizbollah with Hamas? :rolleyes:
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    apologies, I did. But Hezbollah or Hamas, it sounds like you'll support them, whoever they are if they dislike Israel
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    (Original post by jsk800)
    apologies, I did. But Hezbollah or Hamas, it sounds like you'll support them, whoever they are if they dislike Israel
    With all due respect but they are very different groups, indeed they don't get on especially well anymore after Hamas decided to back the brotherhood.
    As for disliking Israel? I make no comment suffice it to say i know the war crimes they commit and have seen the destruction they unleash on civilians for no other reason than why not. I find it unconscionable for someone to support a regime like Israel who violate international law for fun and take a pleasure in slaughtering civilians.
    I suggest you read pity the nation by Robert Fisk it is an excellent account of what Israel god up to in its occupation of Lebanon.
    As for Israel as a concept I have no particular problem with it - simply what it gets up to is revolting and an affront to human decency.
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    (Original post by Napp)
    With all due respect but they are very different groups, indeed they don't get on especially well anymore after Hamas decided to back the brotherhood.
    As for disliking Israel? I make no comment suffice it to say i know the war crimes they commit and have seen the destruction they unleash on civilians for no other reason than why not. I find it unconscionable for someone to support a regime like Israel who violate international law for fun and take a pleasure in slaughtering civilians.
    I suggest you read pity the nation by Robert Fisk it is an excellent account of what Israel god up to in its occupation of Lebanon.
    As for Israel as a concept I have no particular problem with it - simply what it gets up to is revolting and an affront to human decency.
    The thing is, if the soldiers do shoot a civilian for no reason, the country will never put up with that, and will try the solider for war crimes. Through all of their efforts, it is hard to say that Israel has a bad intention. When they are surrounded by countries and groups threatening their existence, there is an amount of force that can be applied to protect lives. It is not in the best interest of Israel to kill people.
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    First of all the article says and I quote " Another war between Israel and Hezbollah is almost inevitable."

    But gives no real evidence on why this is and what will happen. This article is bull****. Full of statements, opinion and circumstantial evidence.

    (Original post by Napp)
    Do you actually know anything about them?
    They are undemocratic Islamist extremists they are as bad as any other terrorist organisation ; their stance on strict implementation of "sharia law" is similar to that of ISIS; their dirty tactics of hostage taking and suicide bombings is similar to that of ISIS; their persecution of minorities like Sunni Muslims in the area is similar to that of ISIS.
    If you sympathise with Hezbollah then not sympathising with ISIS is hypocritical which I am sure you are not.
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    (Original post by FascismIsGood)
    Israel doesn't fight wars against anyone powerful they get the goyim to do it for them

    You stupid ***** and your ****ing kike loving shill politicians like Trump and May would send you to your deaths to make the Jews happy

    You'll never learn


    The Jews are experts at divide and conquering people what do you think they did to Europe?
    And the Jews helped develop the processor from the computer that you are using to hate on them.
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    (Original post by jsk800)
    And the Jews helped develop the processor from the computer that you are using to hate on them.
    Only because their mates at Intel in the US subcontracted work out to Israel, not because the Israelis were the best people to use but simply because they were their mates.
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    (Original post by The PoliticalGuy)
    First of all the article says and I quote " Another war between Israel and Hezbollah is almost inevitable."

    But gives no real evidence on why this is and what will happen. This article is bull****. Full of statements, opinion and circumstantial evidence.



    They are undemocratic Islamist extremists they are as bad as any other terrorist organisation ; their stance on strict implementation of "sharia law" is similar to that of ISIS; their dirty tactics of hostage taking and suicide bombings is similar to that of ISIS; their persecution of minorities like Sunni Muslims in the area is similar to that of ISIS.
    If you sympathise with Hezbollah then not sympathising with ISIS is hypocritical which I am sure you are not.
    Do you actually know a thing about what is happening between the two parties at the moment?
    So to surmise you know nothing of who they are or what they stand for?
    Lets break down you various levels if ignorance here;
    interpretation* not implementation - you can speak to the Lebanese state on that.
    They do nothing different than what the IDF does in terms of hostage taking, do you think they are the same as ISIS?:rolleyes:
    They havent been linked to a suicide bombing in near enough 2 decades so that is an outright lie.
    Thats strange I dont recall them crucifying or beheading scores of their countrymen - er you do know they are shia whilst isis are nominally sunni right? Either way i suggest you do a bit more homework on the confessional system in Lebanon and indeed of Hezbollah as all you seem to 'know' right now is a vague grouping of odd stereoytypes and outright falsehoods, probably gleaned from watching to much propaganda on fox news i assume?
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    (Original post by jsk800)
    The thing is, if the soldiers do shoot a civilian for no reason, the country will never put up with that, and will try the solider for war crimes. Through all of their efforts, it is hard to say that Israel has a bad intention. When they are surrounded by countries and groups threatening their existence, there is an amount of force that can be applied to protect lives. It is not in the best interest of Israel to kill people.
    It's rather hard to square what you're saying with the facts on the ground - I could write you a list five miles long of the numerous instances where this is not true but i think ill content myself to use the Israeli siege and shelling of Beirut, the UN compound, Gaza city and the west bank - these are all war crimes not least because they are targeting civilian areas.
    Do i need to list the numerous Israeli politicians who have gone on record as calling for the 'cleansing' of arabs and persians?
    To say Israel is surrounded by groups that threaten their existence is a grotesque lie i'm afraid. Tehran might but not a single other player has the capabilities, if not the wish, to end Israel.
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    (Original post by Napp)
    Do you actually know a thing about what is happening between the two parties at the moment?
    So to surmise you know nothing of who they are or what they stand for?
    I do know what is going on, Hezbollah and Iran are constantly threatening Israel and Israel are threatening Hezbollah and Iran, by no means are there good and bad people in the region.
    Why are you assuming I know nothing I am actually well- educated of the situation by reading The Reuters ( a very reliable source of news) unlike the BBC and The guardian.
    Lets break down your various levels if ignorance here;
    interpretation* not implementation - you can speak to the Lebanese state on that.
    Ok.
    What on earth are you talking about?

    They do nothing different than what the IDF does in terms of hostage taking, do you think they are the same as ISIS?:rolleyes:
    They havent been linked to a suicide bombing in near enough 2 decades so that is an outright lie.
    Thats strange I dont recall them crucifying or beheading scores of their countrymen - er you do know they are shia whilst isis are nominally sunni right?
    Are you kidding me they are responsible for the hostage taking of hundreds of people, what Israel is doing is bad but comparing it to what Hezbollah is involved in is a step too far?
    My mistake I thought Hezbollah was Hamas, oh wait they are.
    The execution of many Sunni sheikhs that were anti- Hezbollah in Lebanon at the hands of Shia militias that were heavily linked to Hezbollah.
    Yes I do know, I was referring to Hezbollah's persecution of Sunni Muslims in Lebanon and ISIS' persecution of Shia Muslims in the area are similar.

    Either way i suggest you do a bit more homework on the confessional system in Lebanon and indeed of Hezbollah as all you seem to 'know' right now is a vague grouping of odd stereoytypes and outright falsehoods, probably gleaned from watching to much propaganda on fox news i assume?
    Oh, trust me I have done a lot of homework. I don't watch Fox news, you need to stop watching the BBC.
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    (Original post by Napp)
    Are you confusing Hizbollah with Hamas? :rolleyes:
    they are two buttocks of the same bum
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    (Original post by The PoliticalGuy)
    I do know what is going on, Hezbollah and Iran are constantly threatening Israel and Israel are threatening Hezbollah and Iran, by no means are there good and bad people in the region.
    Why are you assuming I know nothing I am actually well- educated of the situation by reading The Reuters ( a very reliable source of news) unlike the BBC and The guardian.
    Hezbollah might receiving financing and arms from Tehran but to confuse that with being subserviant to them is facually wrong. Equally to believe that Hezbollah is some sort of expansionary entity which seeks to take Jerusalem is hilariously misguided. They might well threaten Israel but to think this is undeserved [you know Israeli assassinations against them, occupation of Lebanese land and militarisation and incursion over the boarder]
    I'm simply making the assumption based on what you've said - if you dont want me to do that dont spout propaganda or 'fake news' if you will.
    If you say so :rolleyes:
    who says i'm getting my information from either of those sources? :lol:

    Ok.
    What on earth are you talking about?
    I was addressing your comment on sharia law
    Are you kidding me they are responsible for the hostage taking of hundreds of people, what Israel is doing is bad but comparing it to what Hezbollah is involved in is a step too far?
    And Israel is responsible for thousands. Whats that I smell? Oh yes it is the rank stench of hypocrisy.
    you're right comparing the two is a step to far - Hezbollah havent invaded Israel numerous times and flattened cities.
    My mistake I thought Hezbollah was Hamas, oh wait they are.
    The execution of many Sunni sheikhs that were anti- Hezbollah in Lebanon at the hands of Shia militias that were heavily linked to Hezbollah.
    Yes I do know, I was referring to Hezbollah's persecution of Sunni Muslims in Lebanon and ISIS' persecution of Shia Muslims in the area are similar.
    by all means continue to demonstrate that you know nothing about the two groups :rolleyes:
    *linked groups* so you yourself admit that it wasnt hezbollah? At any rate to single them out for some sort of special blame here is not but deflecting from the egregious crimes committed by numerous other parties in the region. The jews and Christians killing several thousand refugees for example.
    theyre not even comparable :lol: the simple fact of the matter is Hezbollah is an incredibly popular political organisation in lebanon [whether you like it or not] and without them the country would fall back into civil war. So by all means continue to spout your ill informed hate speech about them but irrespective of that they have played the most important role in bringing Lebanon back from civil war and ejecting the illegal and bloody Israeli occupation.
    Oh, trust me I have done a lot of homework. I don't watch Fox news, you need to stop watching the BBC.
    Then your home work is faulty, simple.
    Fine Breitbart, whatever.
    If you say so champ...

    (Original post by the bear)
    they are two buttocks of the same bum
    Pfft-.-
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    (Original post by Napp)
    And Israel is responsible for thousands. Whats that I smell? Oh yes it is the rank stench of hypocrisy.
    you're right comparing the two is a step to far - Hezbollah havent invaded Israel numerous times and flattened cities.

    by all means continue to demonstrate that you know nothing about the two groups :rolleyes:
    *linked groups* so you yourself admit that it wasnt hezbollah? At any rate to single them out for some sort of special blame here is not but deflecting from the egregious crimes committed by numerous other parties in the region. The jews and Christians killing several thousand refugees for example.
    theyre not even comparable :lol: the simple fact of the matter is Hezbollah is an incredibly popular political organisation in lebanon [whether you like it or not] and without them the country would fall back into civil war. So by all means continue to spout your ill informed hate speech about them but irrespective of that they have played the most important role in bringing Lebanon back from civil war and ejecting the illegal and bloody Israeli occupation.
    I cannot continue to argue with a terrorist sympathiser who justifies their actions by comparing it to other illicit activities in the area. You can't justify constant bombing attacks; you can't justify strict interpretation of sharia law; you can't justify the persecution of minorities, so why do you support them.

    And Israel is responsible for thousands
    It still doesn't justify taking innocent hostages.

    By your logic if a man murdered someone and got away with it (even if it was illegal) I could murder someone because they had.
    Hezbollah aren't all flowers and sunshine, you need to get a grip of reality.
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    (Original post by The PoliticalGuy)
    I cannot continue to argue with a terrorist sympathiser who justifies their actions by comparing it to other illicit activities in the area. You can't justify constant bombing attacks; you can't justify strict interpretation of sharia law; you can't justify the persecution of minorities, so why do you support them.
    I think the more likely reason is you know you're completely and utterly wrong.

    It still doesn't justify taking innocent hostages.
    Soldiers arent 'innocent' and they are well within their rights to take them when the ISraelis insist on taking them hostage as well.
    By your logic if a man murdered someone and got away with it (even if it was illegal) I could murder someone because they had.
    Hezbollah aren't all flowers and sunshine, you need to get a grip of reality.
    What an absolute load of tripe.
    I never said they were kiddo :rolleyes: I simply called you out for your disgusting display of hypocrisy on the matter. Not to mention ISrael are the ones who created Hizbollah
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    (Original post by Napp)
    What an absolute load of tripe.
    By your logic if a man murdered someone and got away with it (even if it was illegal) I could murder someone because they had.
    Are you justifying this or not?
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    (Original post by The PoliticalGuy)
    Are you justifying this or not?
    I'm not dignifying it with a response, i thought that was clear?

    I am curious though - why is it you support a state who launches expansionary wars every few years and whose express military doctrine is to flatten civilian areas? You see by every metric that is 'supporting terrorism' and you were previously complaining about my supposed 'supporting terrorism' - im finding it hard to square the two :holmes:
 
 
 

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