Photo Credit: IDF Spokesperson's office
Hezbollah missile conversion site in Beirut marina

While Lebanon’s Red Cross organization is working together with search and rescue teams to pull survivors out from under the rubble and find anyone else who has survived so they can be taken for medical care as quickly as possible, Lebanese investigators are probing the cause of two massive explosions that leveled buildings surrounding the Port of Beirut early Tuesday evening and damaged others up to 10 kilometers away.

Lebanese Health Minister Hamad Hassan told media Tuesday night that at least 73 people died and thousands more were injured, with those numbers still expected to rise.

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The initial cause of the explosions — including one that resulted in a huge mushroom-shaped cloud of smoke — was reportedly linked to “chemicals and fireworks” that were being stored in warehouses at Gate 12 in the area of the port.

No matter what, it’s still not clear what caused the explosions, even with “fireworks and chemicals” because those items do not detonate themselves on their own. As soon as the first blast went up, the Al-Arabiya television station reported that Hezbollah troops were deployed throughout the port. An Arabic television station associated with Hezbollah reported that the terror group said the cause of the blast was not an Israeli strike on a Hezbollah weapons warehouse. Both are odd. But when one considers a bit of news from one year ago, it all falls into place.

Danon to UN Security Council: ‘Beirut Port Has Become Hezbollah’s Port’

Speaking at a special news conference a year ago (July 2019) at the United Nations, Israel’s then-Ambassador to the UN, Danny Danon joined US then-Special Representative for International Negotiations, Jason Greenblatt, to talk about the fact that the Iranian regime is using the Port of Beirut for military purposes.

“They use commercial companies, mainly from Europe, to support Hezbollah to develop its missile program,” Danon said. “Unfortunately, the Port of Beirut has become Hezbollah’s port.”

“In the years 2018-2019, Israel found that dual-use items are smuggled into Lebanon to advance Hezbollah’s rocket and missile capabilities,” Danon told the UN Security Council. “Iran and the Quds Force have begun to advance the exploitation of the civilian maritime channels, and specifically the Port of Beirut,” Danon said. “The Port of Beirut has become the Port of Hezbollah.”

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.