Banking Sanctions Won't Put Hizbullah Out of Business

(Washington Times) Jonathan Schanzer - "After many years of sanctions targeting Hizbullah, today the group is in its worst financial shape in decades," Adam Szubin, the acting Treasury undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, said last week. "We are working hard to put them out of business." Congress in 2015 enacted the Hizbullah International Financing Prevention Act, which hammers banks that knowingly do business with Hizbullah. But nobody is putting Hizbullah "out of business" anytime soon. Hizbullah is a wholly owned subsidiary of Iran. And Iran just negotiated a massive windfall of $100 billion in last summer's nuclear deal. One senior Israeli official recently told me that intelligence estimates assess that Hizbullah's war machine is more powerful than 90% of the world's militaries. The group has a massive rocket arsenal of 150,000, including many with greater accuracy and payload than in the past. In other words, a robust strategy to hit Hizbullah in the purse is by itself insufficient. The writer, a former terrorism finance analyst at the U.S. Department of the Treasury, is vice president for research at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

2016-06-01 00:00:00

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