Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Iran's Press TV devotes three headlines to the idea of a coming war involving Israel and Lebanon

The first article doesn't sound as predictive of war as the headline does:

Israel 'all set for war with Hezbollah'
[...]Barak . . . claimed that "Hezbollah is getting stronger, but so is Israel", adding that "I would suggest that no one of the other side of the border mess with Israel, for their own good".

He also alleged that "Hezbollah, lurking on the other side of the border, is wary of firing at Israel at the moment, but continues to plot various schemes throughout the entire northern front".

Tension is high amid speculations that Hezbollah might deal a blow to the regime in retaliation for the assassination in Damascus of its top commander Imad Mugniyah.

Israel has been on high alert following the end of a 40-day mourning period for Mugniyah, having formerly threatened Lebanon to wage another war if Hezbollah retaliates for the killing of Mugniayah.
The next one is based on an al-Quds al-Arabi story from Wednesday, as the article explains:

Syria 'preparing to repel Israel attacks'
Syria is conducting wide-scale military exercises in preparation for an Israeli strike which might be combined with an attack on Hezbollah.

The Syrian army is closely monitoring the movement of Israeli forces along the northern border, the London-based al-Quds al-Arabi newspaper reported on Wednesday.

In addition to the military preparations, the sources said on the condition on anonymity, that Damascus has raised its security alert level over the concerns that Israeli forces would infiltrate its territories through one of its bordering countries, mainly referring to Lebanon.

The newspaper reported that Damascus viewed the Israeli media reports and statements made by senior Israeli officials as attempts to prepare the Israeli and global public opinion for a war against Syria.

Over the past few weeks, the Syrians have stationed three armored divisions, special forces and nine mechanized infantry divisions opposite Lebanon's western valley, as the Syrians estimate that a ground Israeli invasion may take place in that area. [...]
The next story presents Syria's denial of the report, although still quoting a Syrian spokesman that "there are indications that Israel is preparing a military assault against Syria with the US backing":

Syria denies reports of military drill
[...] "The report, which was published in [the London-based daily], Al-Quds Al-Arabi is totally false," Col. Ahmad Munir Muhammad, a member of the Syrian parliament's National Security Committee, told The Media Line on Wednesday . . .

"Syria is not massing forces [along the border] and is not summoning its reserves", although "there are indications that Israel is preparing a military assault against Syria with the US backing".

"The national Lebanese resistance movement [Hezbollah] has proven that it can thwart an Israeli attack on its own," he added.

The purpose behind such an Israeli invasion, said Muhammad, would be to divert the pressure of public opinion from the "American crisis in Iraq and the crises within Israel."
Is Iran about to order Hezbollah to start another war?

Crossposted on Soccer Dad

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