Monday, September 11. 2006
This Bulletin deals with Hezbollah’s place in Iranian strategy and the vast amounts of aid and support Iran has given the organization since its founding 24 years ago. Hezbollah, and the Lebanese Shi’ite community among whom it took root, are actually the only successful example of exporting the Islamic revolution. Hezbollah also demonstrates how Iran uses the concept to further its ambitions for regional hegemony and the struggle against Israel and the West.
Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah and Iranian president Ahmadinejad (Iranian News Agency ISNA, August 1, 2005) The massive support Iran and it ally, Syria, have given Hezbollah since its founding increased during the past six years, turning it not only into a terrorist organization with military and political capabilities, but also an Iranian stronghold in the heart of the Arab world . Hezbollah’s capabilities, which go far beyond those of a terrorist organization, are a clear-cut threat to the population of Israel , as was well illustrated in the second Lebanon War (which took place earlier than Iran and Syria had planned) . The presence of an stronghold in Lebanon has given Iran cultural influence and political clout, increased its regional influence and enabled it to use terrorism against Israel without being linked involved. In addition, and more even importantly, it provides Iran with a military option to both attack Israel and destabilize the region during a crisis (for example, in response to an attack on its nuclear installation). The second Lebanon war weakened both Hezbollah’s military capability and its political power in Lebanon. However, the organization was not defeated and its pre-war capabilities can be restored . Therefore, Iran and its ally, Syria, can be expected to make an effort to rehabilitate the organization’s capabilities, especially by smuggling arms in from Syria in spite of the embargo imposed on arms shipments to Hezbollah. At the same time, Iran can be expected to use Hezbollah to pour vast amounts of money into rebuilding Lebanon and compensating the local residents (the overwhelming majority of whom are Shi’ites) who were harmed by the war. From the Israeli perspective, the Islamic regime in Iran presents a danger to its existence . The regime’s ideology uncompromisingly and publicly calls for the destruction of the State of Israel, fosters the Palestinian terrorist organizations and systematically strives to attain unconventional nuclear capabilities while thumbing its nose at the demands of the international community. It also clearly presents a threat to American and Western interests in the Persian Gulf and the Middle East in general. Much of the Arab/Muslim world is also apprehensive of an Iranian threat. For that reason, the State of Israel and the entire international community must make an effort to hamper the post-war rehabilitation of Hezbollah’s strategic capabilities as part of a general struggle against the threat of Iran and its stronghold in Lebanon. This Information Bulletin contains the following : A. The concept of exporting the Islamic revolution B. The establishment of Hezbollah by Iran during the Lebanon War, 1982-1985 C. Strengthening Hezbollah after the Lebanon War D. Iranian aid and support for Hezbollah 1. Overview 2. Exporting Iranian ideology 3. Massive supplies of state-of-the-art weapons 4. Ways of bringing weapons into Lebanon 5. Training Hezbollah to use weapons 6. Supervising the build-up of Hezbollah’s military strength and preparing it for a possible confrontation with Israel 7. Financing Hezbollah 8. The damage done to Hezbollah’s military infrastructure during the war. E. Summary and conclusions Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah hugs Iranian president Ahmadinejad during a visit to Iran (Iranian News Agency, IRNA, August 1, 2005) Exporting the Islamic revolution The desire to export the Islamic revolution to the rest of the Muslim world (and even to non-Muslim societies) is an integral part of the philosophy of the Ayatollah Khomeini, who led the Islamic revolution in Iran in 1979. Khomeini and his confederates sought to ignore national division and the religious differences between Shi’ite and Sunni Muslims by creating a revolutionary Islamic power. That power, led by Iran, would stamp out the “root of evil,” the superpowers which had, in their view, led to world corruption, especially the United States (“the big Satan”) and its ally, Israel (“the little Satan”). For Khomeini (and his heir, Ali Khamenei), the concept of exporting the revolution served as a means of advancing Iranian strategic interests, centering around the desire for regional hegemony and the battle against Israel and the West , by intervening in the internal politics of other countries. As part of its marketing strategy, Iran provided particularly generous aid to subversive Islamic movements and terrorist organizations in the Middle East, the Balkans and Africa . At the same time, it undertook an intensive propaganda campaign in various parts of the world to disseminate the principles of the Islamic revolution. That activity continues to this day. In practice, and in addition to Hezbollah, Iran provides support for the Palestinian terrorist organizations (particularly the Palestinian Islamic Jihad and Hamas) and the Shi’ite militias in Iraq , helping them to destabilize the country and hinder the democratization process the Americans are trying to advance.1 Hezbollah is the most prominent terrorist organization receiving Iranian aid and is clearly a priority for the regime’s attention and allotment of resources , and not by chance. During the 24 years which have passed since Hezbollah’s founding, it has entrenched itself among the Lebanese Shi’ites, had impressive achievements and become, in Iranian perspective, the most shining (albeit the only) example of its success in exporting the revolution . The establishment of Hezbollah by Iran during the Lebanon War (1982-1986) The first Lebanon War, which began on June 6, 1982, reduced Syria’s influence there, destroyed the Palestinian terrorist infrastructure and led to the collapse of the central Lebanese government. The Iranians correctly identified the opportunity presented by the political upheaval and exploited it to transport the Islamic struggle to the Lebanese arena, in the heart of the Arab world , and from there to wage its battle against Israel and the United States without direct involvement .2 The Iranians were active mostly among the Shi’ites, the largest sect in Lebanon, which has traditionally suffered from political, economic and social deprivation. Iran’s strategy was compatible with the interests of Syria, which at that time struggled against Israel’s presence in Lebanon from a position of military and political weakness. The meeting of Iranian and Syrian interests led to Syria’s permitting 2,500 Iranian Revolutionary Guards to enter Lebanon and to set up a stronghold within the Shi’ite population in the Beqa’a Valley. Although the Syrians prevented the Iranian force from participating in the fighting against Israel and large numbers of them returned to Iran, the remaining 1,000-1,500 Iranians entrenched themselves in Baalbek, which was under Syrian military control. They established a military-logistic infrastructure at the Sheikh ‘Abdallah camp in Baalbek , which they took over from the Lebanese army, and at the Zabadani camp in Syria , northwest of Damascus. Intelligence and operational Revolutionary Guards elements were later installed in Beirut, Zahle and Mashgharah in the southern Beqa’a Valley. The military infrastructure set up in the summer of 1982 played an important part in establishing Hezbollah and using it to carry out terrorist missions. The Revolutionary Guards’ most conspicuous achievement was successfully uniting the various radical Shi’ite groups which objected to the Israeli presence and Western influence in Lebanon. The Revolution Guards established Hezbollah from among those groups and supported them by training their members, transmitting technical know-how, and providing weapons (through Damascus), ideological guidance and extremely generous funding. The key role in establishing Hezbollah in Lebanon and dispatching its members on terrorist missions against Israel and the West was filled by Hujjat al-Islam ‘Ali Akbar Mokhtashemipour , who was then the Iranian ambassador to Damascus (and is currently head of the Headquarters for Intifada Support, and important in providing Iranian support for Palestinian terrorism). Guided by the Iranians, during its first years Hezbollah developed two modes of action which became the trademarks of Iranian-directed Shi’ite terrorism : Suicide bombing attacks : suicide bombing attacks in Lebanon were carried out by Shi’ite terrorists sent to sacrifice themselves for the sake of Allah as part of jihad, an important element in Khomeini’s ideology (and that of his heirs).3 The first suicide bombing attacks were directed against Western targets , and later against Israeli targets in Lebanon and Jewish and Israeli targets abroad (Argentina). During the first Lebanon War Hezbollah carried out a series of suicide bombing attacks against American and French targets, killing hundreds. As a result of the attacks, the multinational force was evacuated from Lebanon and the Palestinian terrorist organizations were encouraged to copy the Lebanese model, using the suicide bombing attack as the main weapon in their terrorist campaigns against Israel (in the middle 1990s and during the second intifada). Abducting hostages : During the 1980s Hezbollah abducted scores of Western civilians in Lebanon, murdering some of them. Abduction became its primary means exerting pressure on Western countries to change their policies regarding the Iran-Iraq war and the Arab-Israeli conflict, and to secure the release of Shi’ite terrorists in prisons all over the globe.4 Strengthening Hezbollah after the Lebanon War During the second half of the 1980s and during the 1990s, Syria permitted Hezbollah to strengthen its position in the Shi’ite community in Lebanon and to set up an extensive military infrastructure in south Lebanon, to a great extent at the expense of Amal, the movement representing the pragmatic Shi’ite trend. The Syrians, Iran’s allies, did not disarm Hezbollah after the other armed militias had turned in their weapons following the Taef Accord in 1989, which marked the end of the Lebanese civil war. Thus Hezbollah’s position was strengthened among the Shi’ites and within Lebanese politics in general, and it could continue its campaign against both the IDF and the Southern Lebanese Army in the security zone established by Israel, under the banner of “struggle against the occupation.” The IDF’s complete withdrawal from the security zone in south Lebanon on May 24, 2000, and Israel’s full implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 425 should have obviated Hezbollah’s internal-Lebanese justification for the continued armed campaign against Israel. However, the above notwithstanding, Hezbollah, encouraged by Iran and Syria, refused to disarm and cease its terrorist attacks against Israel. During the past six years Hezbollah has carried out occasional attacks against IDF forces along the border, shooting and abducing soldiers, and establishing a broad military infrastructure in south Lebanon. It has found various new pretexts, such as the Sheba’a Farms and the release of Lebanese prisoners, to continue its military campaign against Israel. At the same time it has increased its support for the Palestinian terrorist organizations and encouraged them, in return for money, to carry out suicide bombing attacks within Israel, including during the second Lebanon war. Iranian aid and support for Hezbollah Overview During the six years since the IDF withdrew from Lebanon, Iran and Syria (under Bashar Assad) have increased their assistance and support of Hezbollah. Both countries regard Lebanon as their front line against Israel and Hezbollah as their strategic proxy. Iran, along with Syria, has upgraded Hezbollah’s military capabilities, primarily by providing the organization with rockets and constructing an arsenal of between 12,000 and 13,000 ground-to-ground missiles of various ranges. They also assisted in creating a well-planned and organized Hezbollah military deployment in south Lebanon, in accordance with Iranian military doctrine. The Iranians leading and directing the support of Hezbollah belong to an elite unit of the Revolutionary Guards know as “the Jerusalem [Qods] Force.” The unit, headed by Qassem Suleimani, is responsible for Iranian military activity and for directing terrorist organizations in Lebanon and other places around the globe (including Palestinian terrorists). Iranian support for Hezbollah through the Qods Force includes financing (more than $100 million annually), training in Iran and Lebanon, and supplying state-of-the arts weapons and intelligence about Israel. Qassem Suleimani Exporting the ideology of Iran’s Islamic revolution Material captured from Hezbollah terrorists in south Lebanon during the second Lebanon war included material relating to Iranian ideology, clear evidence of the export of the Iranian Islamic revolution radical ideas to Lebanon. The materials were printed in Arabic by publishing houses connected to Hezbollah and distributed among Hezbollah and the Shi’ite community in Lebanon. Hezbollah has adopted Iranian ideology and like Iran, considers the destruction of the State of Israel its mission. For example, in the village of Marun al-Ras (and others) copies of a booklet called Jihad were taken from Hezbollah terrorists. It was apparently initially meant for the Iranian armed forces, especially the Revolutionary Guards. It contains many quotations of statements made by Khamenei, who views jihad as a doctrine and plan of action by which every Muslim can “sacrifice his life for the sake of Allah and reach paradise.” The height of jihad is shahadah, a martyr’s death for the sake of Allah. Jihad and shahadah are two of the central themes in religious Islamic perception as conceived by the Ayatollah Khomeini and his heir, Khamenei.5 The al-Jihad booklet During the second Lebanon war, a booklet entitled “My Leader” was captured from Hezbollah operatives in the village of Yarun. It was published by Hezbollah’s scouting movement (“the Imam al-Mahdi Scouts”) and contained biographical information about Iranian leader Khamenei, around whom Hezbollah terrorist-operatives have formed a personality cult. Khamenei is represented in the booklet as admirable and worthy of emulation, and as an example of a devoted jihad fighter who contributed much to the Islamic revolution. 24. The cover of the booklet with a picture of ‘Ali Khamenei (right) and the leader of the Islamic Revolution in Iran, the Ayatollah Khomeni in profile (left). The upper text reads, “The Imam al-Mahdi Scouts” and the lower, “Selected passages from the biography of the commander, the highest source of [Shi’ite Islamic] authority, the imam Khamenei, may Allah grant him long life.” Massive supply of state-of-the-art weapons Center: ‘Ali Akbar Mohtashamipour, one of the founders of Hezbollah and today head of the Headquarters for Intifada (i.e., Palestinian terrorism) Support. Right: Khaled Mashal, head of Hamas’s political bureau. Left: Hassan Nasrallah, Hezbollah’s secretary general (January 2003). Mohtashamipour admitted that Iran had given Hezbollah long-range Zelzal 2 missiles. During the past six years the supply of high-quality weapons from Iran and Syria to Hezbollah has been accelerated, and some of them were used by Hezbollah during the second Lebanon war. Prominent among them were the long range missiles targeting civilian population centers in Israel (such rockets cannot not be aimed with precision, and therefore they indiscriminately hit the civilian population Hezbollah’s weapons threat to Israel’s population centers: range of Iranian rockets in Hezbollah possession There were three categories of weapons: Weapons manufactured by Iran’s military industry , including long range Fajr-3 rockets, with a range of 43 km ( miles) and Fajr-5, with a range of 75 km (47 miles). In our assessment, in some instances Hezbollah independently decided to fire the weapons in accordance with what it perceived as the needs of the war, and in some instances needed Iranian approval. Weapons manufactured by Syria’s military industry , including 220 mm rockets with a range of up to 75 km (47 miles) and 302 mm rockets with a range of more than 110 km (68 miles). At least partial payment for the rockets came from Iran. Hezbollah preferred the Syrian rockets during the war. Weapons manufactured in other countries and given to Hezbollah by Syria and Iran , including 122 mm long range rockets made in China and furnished by Iran. For example, advanced Kornet and Metis anti-tank missiles, RPG-29s and SA-7 and SA-14 anti-aircraft missiles, all made in Russia and furnished by Syria, and Chinese C-802 land-to-sea cruise missiles given to Hezbollah by Iran. The weapons furnished by Iran were mostly manufactured by the Iranian military industry, although some were manufactured elsewhere. They included:6 Long-range Zelzal ground-to-ground rockets , which can reach targets 125-210 kms (78-130 miles) away, depending on the model.7 Zelzal-1 rockets have a range of 125 km and Zelzal-2 rockets have a range of 210 km. Both have a diameter of 610 mm (2 ft) and carry a warhead weighing 600 kg (1320 lbs). In our assessment, such rockets were severely damaged during the second Lebanon war and were not used. Long-range Fajr-3 and Fajr-5 ground-to-ground missiles manufactured in Iran. The Fajr-3 has a maximum range of 43 km (27 miles), a diameter of 240 mm (almost 10 inches) and carries a warhead weighing 90 kg (208 lbs). The Fajr-5 has a maximum range of 75 km (47 miles). Their technology is very simple and they are inaccurate. Strategically they were the main threat to Israel’s northern population, although they were used infrequently during the second Lebanon war (they were aimed at Haifa and hit the outskirts of the city). We are uncertain whether that was because they were damaged or because Hezbollah and/or Iran decided not to use them Iranian-manufactured Falaq rockets which carry a large warhead and are used to attack fortified targets . The Falaq-1 has a range of 10 km (almost 6 miles), a diameter of 240 mm and carries a 50 kg (110 lb) warhead. The Falaq-2 has a maximum range of 11 km (almost 7 miles), a diameter of 333 mm (13 inches) and carries a 120 kg (264 lb) warhead. Iranian-manufactured long-range Naze’at rockets of various models (4 through 10). They have a maximum range of 80-140 km (50-87 miles), diameters varying from 356-450 mm (14-18 in) and carry warheads weighing between 240 and 430 kg (528-946 lbs). As far as can be ascertained, they were not used during the second Lebanon war. Upgraded Iranian-manufactured anti-tank missiles with a double tandem-type warhead which can penetrate armor even after reactive shielding: 8 the Raad, an Iranian version of the Sagger, has range of 3000 meters (1.86 miles) and can penetrate 400 mm; the Raad-T, an Iranian version of the Sagger with a tandem warhead, has a range of 3000 meters and can also penetrate 400 mm (16”) after reactive shielding; the Toophan is an Iranian version of the TOW, has a range of up to 3750 meters (2.33 miles) and can penetrate 550 mm (22”) steel armor. Iran and Syria delivered advanced anti-tank missile to Hezbollah and they were used with a high degree of skill day and night, hitting dozens of armored IDF vehicles in south Lebanon. Chinese-manufactured land-to-sea C-802 cruise missiles , such as the one which hit the Israeli gunboat off the coast of Beirut on July 14,two days after the war began. The missile killed four crewmembers and Chinese C-802 land-to-sea missile e damage to the boat. The C-802 has a range of 65 naval miles and carries a warhead weighing 165 kg (363 lbs). Ababil unmanned air vehicles (UAVs) , developed and manufactured by the Iranian areonautical industry. There are a number of different models, including reconnaissance and “attacker” UAVs carrying warheads weighing scores of kilograms. The “attacker” UAVs have two guidance systems: a camera with a range of dozens of kilometers and GPS with a range of more than 100 km (62 miles). Hezbollah sent reconnaissance UAVs into Israel a number of times before the war.9 On August 7 Hezbollah launched an “attacker” UAV which was shot down over the Haifa shore. On August 13, its remains were found in an open field near Kibbutz Kabri, about 4 km (2 1 miles) east of Nahariya. Motorized hang gliders , to which a small piston motor can be attached, as they were used by Palestinian terrorists during “the night of the hang gliders,” (November 25, 1987). The system preserves the form and operation of the hang glider but gives it propulsion sufficient to raise it to a greater than usual height and assure it a prolonged stay in the air, allowing it a range greater than 100 km (62 miles). Russian SA-7 and SA-14 anti-aircraft missiles. Various types of artillery and mortars. Improved Iranian-manufactured Nader RPGs , an Iranian version of the RPG-7. It has range of 300 meters (328 yds), its main warhead has a diameter of 80 mm (3”) and it can penetrate 280 mm (11”) of steel. Night-vision goggles .10 Equipment and weapons for small-scale sea fighting. It is possible that Iran also sent Hezbollah vessels such as torpedo boats, miniature submarines, etc . Ways of smuggling weapons into Lebanon The Iranians smuggle most of the weapons into Lebanon by a combination of air and overland routes. They reach Lebanon in Iranian planes which land at the Damascus international airport. From there they are transported overland to Hezbollah in Lebanon. The Syrians have studiously ignored repeated appeals from the United State, the international community and the UN to keep their territory from being used as an illegal Hezbollah weapons and ammunition supply route. During the past few years the Iranians have exploited the opportunities which presented themselves, such as the humanitarian aid flights for the victims of the earthquake at Bam in southeastern Iran (December 2003-January 2004). On at least nine separate occasions, the Qods Force used the Iranian and Syrian cargo planes bringing humanitarian aid, loading the return flights with large amounts of weapons and other equipment for Hezbollah. During and after the second Lebanon war the Iranians continued sending Hezbollah weapons, disguising them as humanitarian aid.11 In our assessment, some of the attempts were foiled by IDF activity. According to Security Council Resolution 1701, the Lebanese government is supposed to prevent the smuggling of weapons to Hezbollah (aided by UNIFIL, should it so desire). The Syrians have already made it clear that they will oppose UNIFIL action along the Syrian-Lebanese boundary. Training Hezbollah The Iranians instruct and train Hezbollah terrorists to use the new weapons at designated training camps in Iran, using Revolutionary Guard bases and installations. Additional instruction and guidance are provided by the Revolutionary Guards for Hezbollah terrorists in Lebanon.12 The two main camps used by the Qods Force to train foreign terrorist-operatives are the Imam ‘Ali camp in Teheran and the camp at Honar near Karaj, north of Teheran. Two of the Hezbollah terrorists who were captured by the IDF during the second Lebanon war revealed during interrogation that they had been trained by the Revolutionary Guards at the training camp at Karaj. One of them even stated that in 1999 he had received anti-aircraft training and that his instructor had been a high-ranking Iranian named Hassan Irlu. Hezbollah operatives have undergone varied training courses in Iran, from combined maneuvers through the use of anti-tank missiles (including Saggers and TOWs) to the use of anti-aircraft missiles. Special attention has been paid to Hezbollah units operating weapons perceived as strategic, such as ground-to-ground rockets with a range of more than 75 kms (46 miles) and UAVs. It should be noted those who helped Hezbollah launch the UAV into Israel in November 7, 2004 were Revolutionary Guards officers. Hussein ‘Ali Suleiman, a Hezbollah terrorist who was involved in the abduction of the two IDF soldiers on July 12, was captured during the second Lebanon war. During interrogation he said that he and 40-50 other Hezbollah members had undergone training in Iran. Their passports, he said, had not been stamped in Syria or Iran in order to hide the fact that they had been trained in Iran. “It was my job to block [IDF] reinforcements from the [IDF] post [called Livneh], and the internal road.” Hussein ‘Ali Suleiman, trained in Iran, during interrogation (Photo courtesy of the IDF spokesman) Supervising the build-up of Hezbollah’s military strength and preparing it for a possible confrontation with Israel During the six years since the IDF withdrew from the security zone in south Lebanon, the Iranian Revolutionary Guards in Lebanon upgraded Hezbollah’s military operational capabilities while preparing for a possible confrontation with Israel . The Revolutionary Guards established a well-organized and well-planned military deployment zone for Hezbollah in south Lebanon. It was more in the style of an Iranian division than the force of a terrorist organization . Thus the Revolutionary Forces created the model of a terrorist organization for Hezbollah with state capabilities. The Hezbollah “division” was constructed with the supervision and counsel of members of the Revolutionary Guards, who visited south Lebanon frequently and sometimes even approached the fence along the border with Israel. That was confirmed by one of the Hezbollah terrorists captured during the war, who said that a year and a half previously, while he was on guard in south Lebanon, two Iranians and two Hezbollah commanders visited the post. He identified one of the Iranians as “Mahmoud,” a member for the Revolutionary Guards who had been his instructor during anti-aircraft training he had had in Iran. In effect, the Hezbollah formation in south Lebanon was the direct product of Iranian doctrine and technology supplied by Iran and Syria . Hezbollah’s military zone in south Lebanon was composed of a number of territorial brigades and anti-tank, artillery, logistics, engineering and communications units. It was subordinate to a kind of Hezbollah “general staff” in the southern Beirut Shi’ite neighborhood of Dahia. The “general staff” had various functions such as a “strategic weapons” unit (ground-to-ground rockets) an aerial unit (UAVs), a marine unit and others. Financing Hezbollah The cost of supporting Hezbollah’s vast military and social infrastructure is beyond the organization’s resources. Its annual budget is estimated at about $100 million, most of which comes from Iran. The money finances the organization’s terrorist-operative activities and infrastructures, purchases weapons, pays the operatives salaries, pays for training and is also invested in financing terrorist attacks in the Palestinian Authority. In addition, the generous Iranian financial support pays for the organization’s expenses and broad social activities , such as the operation of schools, hospitals and clinics, welfare institutions, etc., and also finances propaganda and indoctrination activities . These activities are aimed at deepening its penetration of the Shi’ite community and creating new generations of terrorists. The Iranians transfer the funds to Hezbollah through the Revolutionary Guards’ Qods Force, the foreign ministry, and its embassies in Damascus and Beirut. The Hezbollah budget is also paid by quasi-government institutions and charitable societies and organizations under Khamenei’s control which have branches in Lebanon. It should be noted that Iranian financial aid to Hezbollah increased after the IDF withdrew from the security zone, with the objectives of improving the organization’s military capabilities and increasing support for the activities of the Palestinian terrorist organizations in the PA. After the second Lebanon war the Iranians can be expected to provide Hezbollah with massive amounts of money, in our assessment several hundred million dollars,13 to repair the heavy damages caused to the Shi’ite populations in Beirut and south Lebanon. The damage done to Hezbollah’s military infrastructure during the war During the second Lebanon war the IDF severely damaged Hezbollah’s broad military infrastructures in south Lebanon, Beirut and the Beqa’a Valley. Weapons and headquarters were destroyed and more than 500 terrorists were killed. It will apparently take Hezbollah a great deal of time to rehabilitate its fighting force. The arsenal of rockets it stockpiled through the years was significantly damaged , especially its long-range rockets . However, the organization still has the capabilities to fire rockets into the State of Israel . Despite the blows Hezbollah’s military infrastructure suffered, and despite the blow to its standing in Lebanon, it was not defeated and can be rehabilitated . Thus it can be expected that Iran, supported by Syria, will made the effort to repair the damage done to its front-line outpost in Lebanon by supplying weapons (especially rockets) and pouring large sums of money into rebuilding civilian infrastructures. Summary and Conclusions Through the massive support given to Hezbollah by Iran and Syria since its inception, the organization has turned from a local Lebanese terrorist organization, one of the many operating in Lebanon, into a military force with strong military operational capabilities and a great deal of influence both within the Shi’ite community and on the overall Lebanese political scene . In the eyes of its sponsors, Hezbollah has become a strategic asset which serves their regional policies well. Hezbollah’s terrorist-operative capabilities, which are those of a state, not a terrorist organization, were demonstrated during the second Lebanon war, earlier than what Iran and Syria had planned . It was evident that the military infrastructure constructed in Lebanon permitted the Iranians and Syrians to both attack and respond to Israel, and that its control was largely in Iranian hands . Hezbollah’s existence has made the Iranians, in their own eyes, a factor with the ability to escalate the destabilization of the region without direct intervention and to harm Israeli and Western interests in accordance with Iranian policy considerations . Thus in the near future the Iranians and Syrians can be expected to make an effort to rebuild Hezbollah’s military infrastructures and ignore Security Council Resolution 1701. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1. The Iranians provide the Shi’ite militias in Iraq with weapons, ammunition, money and instructions for preparing explosive charges and even carrying out attacks. 2. Shimon Shapira, Hizbullah between Iran and Lebanon, (Hebrew) Hakibbutz Hameuchad Publishing House, (Tel Aviv, 2000), pp. 96-133. 3. For further information see our Information Bulletin entitled “’Exporting’ the radical ideology of the Islamic revolution in Iran,” at http://www.terrorism-info.org.il/malam_multimedia/English/eng_n/html/jihad0806e.htm and http://www.terrorism-info.org.il/malam_multimedia/English/eng_n/pdf/jihad0806e.pdf. 4. For further information about Iranian and Shi’ite terrorism and about Iranian-directed Hezbollah attacks, see both parts of our Information Bulletin entitled “ Hezbollah: profile of the Lebanese Shiite terrorist organization of global reach sponsored by Iran and supported by Syria,” at http://www.terrorism-info.org.il/malam_multimedia/English/eng_n/html/hezbollah.htm and http://www.terrorism-info.org.il/malam_multimedia/html/final/eng/iran.htm. Also see “Iran as a state sponsoring and operating terror,” at http://www.terrorism-info.org.il/malam_multimedia/html/final/eng/iran.htm or http://www.terrorism-info.org.il/malam_multimedia//ENGLISH/IRAN/PDF/APR_03.PDF. 5. See Footnote 4. 6. The list does not include weapons given to Hezbollah by Syria. 7. In an exceptional statement, ‘Ali Akbar Mohtashamipour admitted that Zelzal-2 rockets had been given to Hezbollah (in an interview with the reformist daily paper Sharq, August 3). 8. A new type of tank armor which explodes a projectile before it comes into contact with the tank body. 9. On the morning of November 7, 2004, Hezbollah sent a reconnaissance UAV which passed over Nahariya and crashed into the sea as it returned to south Lebanon, apparently because of a technical fault. On April 11, 2005, the organization sent another reconnaissance UAV which flew between Acre and Nahariya and landed safely in south Lebanon. 10. The spokesman for the British Foreign Office stated that the IDF had found British-made night vision goggles used by Hezbollah in south Lebanon. The London Times reported that the 250 pairs of goggles found in south Lebanon had been sent to Iran by Britain in 2003 as part of a British-Iranian joint effort to fight drug-smuggling. 11. Some of the flights exploited for the transport of weapons went through Turkey. A spokesman for the Turkish Foreign Ministry confirmed a Turkish newspaper report which claimed that the authorities had forced two Iranian planes on their way to Syria to land because they suspected them of being used to smuggle weapons to Hezbollah. 12. Iran also supports the Palestinian terrorist organizations and members of the Qods Force train Palestinian terrorists in Lebanon and sometimes in Iran as well. 13. Hezbollah has publicly committed itself to pay $150 million in reparations for the destruction of houses, especially in south Lebanon and Dahia. Only from Iran can the organization receive such sums. Terrorism, Iran, Hezbollah
Our "ostrich approach" with Iran is extremely dangerous!
I can't believe we are falling into Iran's game again and still doing nothing. What is really scary though is that it is no longer a matter of hypocrisy in responding to Iran's belligerent rhetoric. Teheran is now clearly showing us some muscle and tellin
Weblog: The Terrorist's Nightmare
Tracked: Nov 03, 12:50
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