Israel Spares Hizbullah Fighters to Avert a War

(New York Times) Ben Hubbard and Ronen Bergman - When the missile exploded near their vehicle, three Hizbullah operatives leapt out and ran for cover. The attack was caught on closed-circuit video and shows that a moment later, appearing to know they had time, the men returned to get their bags, and strolled away before a second missile obliterated the SUV. No one was killed or wounded in the attack, but that was the point. According to several current and former Israeli and Middle Eastern officials, Israel has adopted a policy of warning Hizbullah operatives in Syria before bombing their convoys to avoid killing them and risking war. Hizbullah operatives in Syria have received surprise phone calls from Israeli officials warning them to evacuate their bases before they are bombed, according to an official from the pro-Iran regional alliance. The idea, a senior Middle Eastern intelligence official said, is to tell Hizbullah, "We can see you, even if we don't kill you."

2020-04-23 00:00:00

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