Thursday, January 29, 2015

Hiz"B"Allah's Overextention


Little Satan's recent mini blitz that knocked off Revo Gurad Corps Generals and an especial HbA legacy - son of Imad Muganiyah - got a mini counter attack in Lebanon. Little Satan instantly responded with a few air sortees.

So what now? Escalation time?

Wednesday’s ambush raised many other questions. Did Hezbollah now believe that it had settled its score with Israel, that this round was over? The two sides have exchanged rocket fire since the initial Hezbollah ambush, but questions remained about whether Israel would try to engage the group in a new war, stretch its resources, and precipitate an angry backlash against it in Lebanon.

Ensuing clashes between the two sides also killed a U.N. peacekeeper and threatened to blow open a front that had largely been dormant since the devastating war between Hezbollah and Israel in 2006.

A new conflict could further erode support for Hezbollah in Lebanon; it’s also plausible that the Lebanese would grudgingly rally around the group as it battles its original foe, if Israel exacts collective punishment against Lebanon and not just against Hezbollah fighters.

During the 2006 war with Israel, southern Lebanese, who form the bulk of Hezbollah’s constituency, were sheltered by Lebanese in other parts of the country and in Syria. Where will those people find refuge if another conflict erupts? Can Hezbollah risk bringing out the mass internal displacement of Lebanese while the country is struggling to cope with the huge influx of displaced Syrians?

There are broader regional calculations as well. Both Hezbollah and Syria’s Assad are politically and financially backed by Iran. Plummeting oil prices must be straining Iran’s (and Russia’s) economic lifeline to Assad. A new Hezbollah front with Israel would make further demands on Tehran’s purse.

Can Iran afford to foot Hezbollah’s bill? If Israel escalates the conflict, can Hezbollah choose not to respond without losing face? Is Israel just engaged in election-season muscle flexing? Would Hezbollah draw some of its forces back home from Syria to fight Israel, if that front reopened?

Pic - "Hezbollah considers any attack on any faction of the resistance movements, or on the two supporting nations of Iran or Syria, as an attack on all of them"