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Rethinking Hezbollah's Role in Syria

Lebanese leaders consider the consequences of Hezbollah's intervention in Syria, including the potential for chaos in Arsal and the Bekaa.
Lebanese Army soldiers patrol town of Arsal after being deployed to tighten security after two men died in clashes near a Lebanese army checkpoint June 6, 2013. Two men died in clashes near a Lebanese army checkpoint on Thursday, a security source said, in a possible spillover from the recent fighting in the nearby Syrian border town of Qusair.  REUTERS/Ahmad Shalha (LEBANON - Tags: CIVIL UNREST MILITARY POLITICS) - RTX10DYD
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On the sidelines of a special consultative meeting held at his residence last week, the leader of the Lebanese Forces (LF) party, Samir Geagea, posed the question, “Why did Hezbollah fighters manage to make a great difference in the balance of military power, when the party announced its involvement in the fighting in Syria, as evidenced by what happened in the battle of Qusair?”

He went on with his analysis saying that the Syrian regime’s army has more than 450,000 soldiers, 150,000 of whom — according to his information — have been fighting on fronts and facing rebels across most governorates. Geagea also said that the Syrian army has elite unites with high training, experience and good equipment in its ranks. Thus, Hezbollah’s intervention should not be effective to this extent in the course of military confrontations, especially since the party’s troops do not exceed 5,000 soldiers, according to his information.

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