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A Disturbing New Reality in Northern Israel

SFI Blog image flickr/Will De Freitas

As the dust settles after Hezbollah’s attack on the Israeli-Lebanon border killed two IDF soldiers and wounded seven, the Lebanese terrorist organization claims to be seeking calm. However, Israel Hayom’s Yoav Limor writes that Hezbollah will act again, and that Israel’s borders with Syria and Lebanon are now theaters of war:

Even if the flare-up in the north has been extinguished, it sent a disturbing message: The northern front is awakening, both on the Syrian and Lebanese borders, and it is doubtful that Hezbollah is deterred from acting again.

The Israel Defense Forces has yet to officially declare a return to normalcy, but the messages Israel received from Hezbollah, via UNIFIL, indicated that Hezbollah was seeking calm. Despite the heavy price paid, Israel’s defense establishment can move on from the recent events in the north …

It will take time to determine if the message was received and Hezbollah will be deterred from operating again in the Golan Heights. Most official Israeli entities believe the answer is no and that the renewal of Hezbollah’s activities in the Har Dov area indicates a significant change in the security reality in the north. This is bad news, because the consequences of this change are far-reaching and problematic. The concern is that we are now on a downward slope to another war in the north, sooner or later.

Even if both sides do not want such a war to take place, the IDF must take advantage of the upcoming time period to boost its readiness (mostly in the operational realm) for such a scenario. Lessons must be learned from both Operation Protective Edge and the recent events in the north …

Both the borders with Syria and Lebanon are now not just hostile ones, but also theaters of war, requiring a change of operational behavior and thinking. Given the current frenzy in the Middle East, it will not be long before something happens, someone attacks and someone gets killed. From there, it will be a short road to the next round of fighting.

Tags: Middle East Unrest , Hezbollah , Israel

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