A ‘worst nightmare’ scenario is unfolding for Israel, as its officials have long feared war on two fronts. Following weekend reports of sporadic shelling and missile fire out of south Lebanon into northern Israel, it’s increasingly becoming evident that Lebanese Hezbollah has joined the conflict.
Starting Sunday, Hezbollah confirmed in a statement that it sent “large numbers of rockets and shells” against Israeli positions in solidarity with the “Palestinian resistance.” On Monday, videos were widely circulated of fresh attacks and retaliatory shelling from the Israeli side. There are reports that Israeli helicopters are active along the border, seeking to thwart Hezbollah “infiltrators”.
⚡️South Lebanon now pic.twitter.com/ZtirXEjUYU— War Monitor (@WarMonitors) October 9, 2023
Starting Sunday, Hezbollah officials declared their involvement in fresh hostilities at the Israel-Lebanon border: “The responsibility obliges all the sons of our nation not to be neutral and we are not neutral,” Safi al-Din said at a pro-Palestinian rally in Beirut, Lebanese news site Naharnet reported. The Hezbollah official referred to his group’s shelling of Israel, saying: “The resistance sent a message this morning.” He said “it is our right to target the enemy that is still occupying our land and the Israelis must read this message well.”
Much of this initial shelling and missile fire reportedly occurred in the area Syria’s Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, which was annexed by Israel in 1981. Casualties on either side remain unclear and undisclosed.
Below: Times of Israel writes, “A picture taken from southern Lebanon on October 9, 2023, shows an Israeli Merkava tank driving in the border town of Metula, Israel.”
A separate Hezbollah statement being reported in regional media said, “Palestine is not Ukraine. If America intervenes directly, all American locations in the region will become legitimate targets of the resistance axis and will face our attacks. And on this day there will be no red line left.”
Indeed, if a fresh conflict with Hezbollah spirals, there’s an increased likelihood that Israel could begin targeting locations in Iran.
A weekend Wall Street Journal report alleged the Iranians had funded and helped organize the Saturday Hamas incursions into southern Israel, which left hundreds of Israelis dead.