Explosion during an Israeli air strike in Syria in February 2021

Explosion during an Israeli air strike in Syria in February 2021

Israel To Prevent Hezbollah 2 In Iraq, Syria: Chief Of Staff

Saturday, 12/03/2022

Israeli Army’s chief of staff says the government is seeking to prevent “the formation of another Hezbollah” in Syria and Iraq.

In an interview with the Jerusalem Post, Aviv Kochavi said Israel had been carrying out its “war between the wars” strategy mainly through a series of airstrikes on Iranian targets in Syria and Iraq, in order to prevent the formation of a “Hezbollah 2”.

Israeli officials have rarely admitted their bombing campaign of Iranian targets in Syria.

Kochavi further noted that the Islamic Republic has sought to deploy drones and air defenses to Syria and even building a base called Imam Ali on the border with Iraq near Albukamal.

“Hezbollah has massively increased its power in the last decade and a half… In a sense, Hezbollah has already become Hezbollah 2 and it would like to establish Hezbollah 3 in Syria, while it grooms another Hezbollah in Iraq and in Yemen… Trying to keep them from fully swallowing part of Syria is a major challenge,” Kochavi told the Jerusalem Post.

Iran has been deeply involved in the Syrian civil war for more than a decade, deploying tens of thousands of its own forces as well as hired Afghan, Iraqi and Pakistani Shiite fighters, who helped save Bashar al-Assad’s regime, with help from Russia.

However, since 2017 Iran has been trying to set up a presence on the Israeli border, possibly to create a new front to complement what the Lebanese Hezbollah has in southern Lebanon against Israel.

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