ARAB AND WORLD

Tue 18 Jun 2024 2:13 pm - Jerusalem Time

Israel bombs southern Lebanon, and America warns it of an Iranian attack that will be difficult to repel

Last night, Israel launched raids on villages in southern Lebanon, while the United States warned it of an Iranian attack that would be difficult to repel, as part of Washington's efforts to contain the escalation in the region.


Al Jazeera's correspondent reported that Israeli warplanes bombed a house in the town of Shaqra in the central sector of southern Lebanon.


Israeli aircraft also launched a raid on the vicinity of the town of Aitaroun, while another raid targeted the town of Aita al-Shaab in southern Lebanon.


On Monday evening, electricity was cut off in a number of villages in southern Lebanon, as a result of an Israeli bombing that targeted the town of Rab Thilaine.


The Lebanese official agency reported in a brief report that there was “heavy enemy (Israeli) artillery shelling on the town of Rab Thilaine.”


She explained that "the bombing on the town of Rab Thileen caused a power outage in the villages of Al-Taybeh, Deir Siryan, and a number of other southern villages."


Large-scale attack

For his part, the American envoy, Amos Hockstein, warned Israel of the possibility that the war with Hezbollah would lead to a widespread Iranian attack that would be difficult to repel.


Haaretz said that Hockstein warned of the possibility that the war with Hezbollah would lead to "a large-scale Iranian attack on Israel, which will be difficult for Israeli defense systems to repel, accompanied by the possibility of widespread fire by Hezbollah in Lebanon."


Iran launched a direct attack on Israel on April 13, 2024, calling it “The True Promise,” in response to Israel’s bombing of its consulate in Damascus, which resulted in the killing of prominent figures from the Iranian Revolutionary Guard.


Iran launched many missiles and drones towards Israel, but the United States and France intercepted most of these attacks before they reached their targets.


Haaretz newspaper quoted the American envoy as telling Israeli officials, “As long as the fighting continues in the Gaza Strip, it will not be possible to reach a separate agreement between Israel and Hezbollah.”


She added, "Hochstein hopes that if the Israeli ground operation in Rafah, south of the Gaza Strip, is completed within two or three weeks, this will also lead to a reduction in the intensity of the fire between Israel and Hezbollah in the north."


On Monday, Hockstein met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, President Isaac Herzog, opposition leader Yair Lapid, Defense Minister Yoav Galant, and head of the State Camp party, Benny Gantz.


Today, Tuesday, the American envoy began holding meetings with Lebanese officials in Beirut, to discuss containing the escalation between Israel and Hezbollah.


Preparing for war

Israeli strategic expert Yoni Ben Menachem said that the assessment in Israel is that "the Biden administration cannot push Hezbollah away from the border, and we must prepare for war."


He explained that there is great pessimism in Israel after the meetings of the political level with Amos Hockstein regarding the possibility of achieving a ceasefire in Lebanon.


Meanwhile, the US State Department said that reaching a ceasefire agreement in Gaza would facilitate the solution on the border between Lebanon and Israel.


Ministry spokesman Matthew Miller added that Washington believes that there is a diplomatic framework that can be reached that may achieve a solution between Hezbollah and Israel without entering into an all-out war.


Since last October 8, Hezbollah and the Israeli army have exchanged daily bombardments, resulting in hundreds being killed and wounded, most of them on the Lebanese side.


Hezbollah says that it stands in solidarity with Gaza, which has been exposed since October 7 to an Israeli war that has left more than 122,000 Palestinians dead and wounded, most of them children and women, and more than 10,000 missing amid deadly famine and massive destruction.

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Israel bombs southern Lebanon, and America warns it of an Iranian attack that will be difficult to repel

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