Hizbullah Is Preparing Syria as Second Battlefield Against Israel

(Long War Journal) David Daoud - The pro-Hizbullah news site Ya Sour quoted Hizbullah sources last week saying the group intends to fire long-range missiles at Israel from the Qalamoun and Anti-Lebanon mountain ranges, areas under its control on both sides of the Syrian-Lebanese border. Hizbullah sources said the region's vast expanses were ideal for easily and safely firing long-range missiles at Israel. This coincides with other reports that Hizbullah has transferred its longer-range rockets to Syria, as they require launching pads too large to be hidden in Lebanon from Israel's aerial surveillance. Placing its longer-range weapons in Syria is thought to put Hizbullah's rockets out of range of IDF ground troops, and they could be hidden in the Syrian army's hardened shelters to better insulate them from air strikes. On the second day of the 2006 Second Lebanon War, it took the Israeli Air Force 34 minutes to destroy most of Hizbullah's medium and long-range missiles tucked away in the rugged Lebanese terrain. With the dispersal of Hizbullah's missiles across the Qalamoun Mountains, Israeli jets would have to cover a much larger area to locate and destroy them, while also worrying about Syrian and Russian air defenses. However, Israeli strikes in the Qalamoun region - 43 to date - demonstrate that Hizbullah's arsenal lies well within Israel's reach. The writer is an Arabic-language analyst at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

2017-03-17 00:00:00

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