Security officials have warned the political echelon in Israel that Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah is taking advantage of the rift in Israel following the judicial reform, Kan 11 News reported Tuesday night. According to sources, Hezbollah is expected to increase its aggressiveness in confrontations along the Lebanon-Israel border, continuing the escalation of the past month.
The issue was brought up in the briefing given by the head of military intelligence and the head of the IDF operations department to the cabinet ministers. It was also raised in discussions between senior Israeli officials and US officials.
Reuters reported this week that senior Hezbollah, Hamas, Revolutionary Guards, and Iranian security officials called a meeting to consider their steps following the situation in Israel, and after concluding that the judicial reform crisis is weakening Israel, they agreed to avoid “direct intervention” in the situation. Israel’s enemies would rather let the internal strife fester, knowing that an attack from the outside would only serve to unite most Israelis.
Brigadier General (res.) Mordechai Kahana wrote in Maariv last week that the first clue that Hezbollah perceived regarding Israel’s new weakness had to do with the Lapid government’s capitulation to Nasrallah’s demand when Israel handed over a large portion of its economic water to Lebanon for natural gas exploration.
Kahana argues that the recent establishment of a Hezbollah encampment within the territory of the State of Israel, dozens of meters inside the blue line, is another sign of the creeping devaluation of the IDF’s deterrence capacity and of increasing provocations on the part of Hezbollah, which not only stretches its borders to the limit but de facto maintains its own deterrence policy against Israel, becoming ever bolder in the field.
On Tuesday, IDF Chief of Staff Herzi Halevi issued a heartfelt call to the reservists to come back. Frankly, it was more a forlorn serenade from a jilted lover than a stern demand from the supreme commander of the strongest army in the region. Many on the right called it pathetic and wondered if Herzi and the pro-anarchist Attorney General were not complimentary farewell gifts from the defeated Lapid government. Here it is, I go with pathetic:
Haaretz military correspondent Amos Harel reported on Wednesday that Chief of Staff Halevi presented Prime Minister Netanyahu in their meeting this week with a very serious report on the scope of reservists’ refusal to serve and its projected consequences on the cohesion of IDF units and their operational competence. Harel expects these figures to increase in the coming days and weeks. The General Staff already admitted that there has been an initial erosion of operational competence, especially in the Air Force. On Tuesday, the various special forces were required to reorganize their sorting and troop bonding activities due to the departure of some reservists. The IDF knows that the phenomenon is expected to trickle down, mostly quietly, to the ranks of the regular army and even to the conscripts.
23 years after his famous “cobwebs” speech, one day after then-Prime Minister Ehud Barak conducted the hasty retreat of IDF forces from south Lebanon, Nasrallah is seeing his prophecy coming true: Israeli society is falling apart on its own and he doesn’t even have to lift a finger.
— כאן חדשות (@kann_news) July 25, 2023
But Nasrallah is driven by his eagerness to show the Arab world that he, too, had something to do with his envisioned collapse of the Zionist state. And so he is ordering his soldiers to increase the provocations. On Tuesday, a video was published showing Hezbollah uniformed fighters carrying equipment all but three feet from the border fence near Moshav Dovev. Nasrallah has no interest in starting a war now, but he certainly enjoys getting on Israel’s nerves.
Here’s another fun fact: the same pundits and military correspondents who are chiding Netanyahu for his tolerating Hezbollah’s provocations, when he takes proper action, will accuse him of launching a war to avert the people’s attention from the crisis.