Skip to main content

Hezbollah's Empty Threats Against Israel

Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad, Damascus and Tehran are all threatening to set Israel ablaze after any attack on Syria, but none of them has the interest or ability to follow through.
Lebanon's Hezbollah scouts parade during a rally to mark 'Quds (Jerusalem) Day' in Beirut's southern suburbs, August 2, 2013. Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah delivered a speech to hundreds of supporters in support of Palestinians in his first public appearance since last September. He has been living in hiding, for fear of assassination, since Hezbollah fought a month-long war with Israel in 2006.  REUTERS/Sharif Karim   (LEBANON - Tags: POLITICS CIVIL UNREST ANNIVERSARY) - RTX128J7
Read in 

It’s the perfect time for all the illustrious heroes to make threats. Syria is threatening to fire missiles at Tel Aviv if the United States attacks. Like a mosquito threatening to sting the elephant on whose ear it is perched, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad thinks that no one will notice that his army is shattered after a long war of attrition against the rebels. Tens of thousands of soldiers have already gone AWOL, and this army even needed Hezbollah’s help to win back the strategic town of Qusair.

Hassan Nasrallah, secretary-general of Hezbollah, is also puffing out his chest, but he is being a bit wiser about it. He has troubles of his own in Lebanon, so that if he is to avoid further criticism at home or new attacks against Hezbollah targets, he has no choice but to speak out of both sides of his mouth. On one hand, the head of the Hezbollah bloc in Lebanon’s parliament, Mohammad Raad, promised the Lebanese prime minister that Hezbollah will not open fire if Syria is attacked. It will not get Lebanon entangled in another destructive war against Israel, he declared. In fact, Hezbollah is actually increasing the number of troops stationed in southern Lebanon. If Tehran demands that Hezbollah respond, it will have no choice but to comply.

Access the Middle East news and analysis you can trust

Join our community of Middle East readers to experience all of Al-Monitor, including 24/7 news, analyses, memos, reports and newsletters.


Only $100 per year.