Israeli Aerial Attacks Deeper into Lebanon Strike Hezbollah Targets

Israeli Aerial Attacks Deeper into Lebanon Strike Hezbollah Targets

Israeli attacks escalated deeper into Lebanon on Monday, with targets linked to Hezbollah bearing the brunt. This marks a significant intensification of hostilities.

Military Operations

Israeli airstrikes hit Hezbollah positions in the Bekaa Valley, about 60 miles from Israel’s border. Israel launched these strikes in response to Hezbollah claiming responsibility for downing an Israeli drone over southern Lebanon.

According to Bachir Khodor, mayor of Baalbek, the strikes resulted in the death of at least two Hezbollah fighters, with six others wounded. Video footage from the scene, provided by Mr. Khodor, showed a building reduced to rubble and injured individuals being evacuated.

Later in the day, the Israeli military confirmed the targeted killing of a Hezbollah commander in southern Lebanon. While Hezbollah acknowledged the death of the fighter, they did not disclose his rank or significance.

Retaliation and Response

In response, Hezbollah launched a rocket barrage towards the Golan Heights, targeting an Israeli army headquarters. The Israeli military has yet to comment on these claims.

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Backdrop and Context

The Bekaa Valley, known for its strategic location along the Syrian border, has long been a stronghold for Hezbollah. The Lebanese militia has been engaged in frequent clashes with Israeli forces since the onset of attacks on Israel by Hamas on October 7. The conflict has led to the displacement of over 150,000 individuals and resulted in hundreds of casualties on both sides of the Lebanese-Israeli border.

These attacks mark the first instance of Israeli military action in the Bekaa Valley during the ongoing conflict. Recent strikes have seen Israel targeting deeper into Lebanese territory. Just last week, Israeli forces claimed to have targeted Hezbollah weapons storage sites near the coastal city of Sidon, approximately 20 miles from the Israeli border.

Future Plans and Outlook

Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, in a meeting with military officials on Sunday, outlined plans to escalate operations against Hezbollah. He emphasized Israel’s commitment to continue operations along the Lebanese border, even amid potential ceasefires elsewhere.

“We will intensify operations separately in the north and continue until Hezbollah fully withdraws and Israeli civilians return home,” he asserted. Hezbollah lawmaker Hassan Fadlallah warned that Israel’s latest attacks would not go unanswered, indicating the potential for further escalation.

“The escalating Israeli attacks deepen tensions, risking further instability in the volatile Lebanese-Israeli border region”, said WSJ Print Subscription.

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