Billboards spread around the southern suburbs of Beirut calling for citizens to make financial donation to the Hezbollah “martyrs” are being interpreted by informed political circles in Lebanon as a sign that the terror group is experiencing a suffocating financial, the news website Lebanon Debate reported on Thursday.
The crisis is the result of the reduction in Iranian financial aid to the group, at the height of its ambitious involvement in numerous regional conflicts, from Syria to Iraq, Yemen, and Bahrain.
The hardships of the increase in Hezbollah’s expenses and decrease in its Iranian aid are further enhanced by US and international sanctions which are being imposed on its ability to collect donations and use the world’s banking system. Hence its new campaign for aid from its wealthy patrons in Lebanon’s Shiite community, including businessmen, politicians and drug dealers.
In July 2014, The Daily Beast reported that Hezbollah owns marijuana plantations and produces hashish in the Bekaa Valley. The products are exported to Iraq, Jordan and Syria, where demand is the highest. The Lebanese government maintains a laissez-faire attitude towards illegal drug production.
According to Arab media reports, Hezbollah also owns Lebanese front companies dealing in counterfeit medicine.