Joined: 09 Sep 2006
|Posted: Fri Sep 18, 2009 11:44 am Post subject: Top IDF officer: Iran has taken over Hezbollah
|Top IDF officer: Iran has taken over Hezbollah
~By Anshel Pfeffer, Haaretz Correspondent Last update - 20:30 17/09/2009
A senior Israel Defense Forces officer said Thursday that all five incidents
of rocket fire from southern Lebanon into Israel since the end of the 2006
Second Lebanon War have been carried out in absolute defiance of Hezbollah
directives and that Iran had taken control over the Lebanese militia.
The officer, who preferred to remain unnamed, said that Hezbollah was in a
weakened state as a result of activity of the United Nations Interim Force
in Lebanon (UNIFIL) in the southern part of the country - a Hezbollah
stronghold - and the objection of many southern Lebanon residents to
reconstruction of Hezbollah posts and weapons caches south of the Litani
According to the officer, Hezbollah now operates freely only in Shiite
villages and towns.
IDF intelligence has surmised that Iran's Revolutionary Guard has increased
its control over Hezbollah in recent years and is preventing the Lebanese
militia from forming its own independent structure.
Intelligence experts attribute this increase in Iranian control to Iran's
displeasure over Hezbollah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah's conduct
during the Second Lebanon War, which the group fought against Israel in
southern Lebanon. Experts also believe that the assassination of Hezbollah
operations chief Imad Mughniyeh, who has yet to be replaced, also played a
role in this process, as many of operational positions within Hezbollah are
now held by Iranians.
Hezbollah suffered another blow recently when an investment advisor who was
caught up in an embezzlement scandal caused the organization immense
financial losses. The IDF believes that Hezbollah is not interested in
sparking another round of fighting against Israel, concluding that should
Hezbollah carry out a revenge attack over Mughniyeh's assassination, for
which it blames Israel, it will only be done against an Israeli target
abroad so as to try to prevent an Israeli retaliation.
The IDF officer also said that the five incidents of rocket fire into Israel
from southern Lebanon were carried out by Al-Qaida inspired Palestinian
groups based in a refugee camp where Hezbollah holds no sway.
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