Fears grow that Israel might risk surprise strike to cripple Hezbollah | Middle East Online

“The thinking in Israel about a pre-emptive attack appears to be changing,” a Western diplomat said. “It seems they’re taking this possibility seriously.”

Similar views were heard recent­ly from other diplomats in Beirut, both resident and visiting.

In April, an analysis in the Jeru­salem Post claimed that some Is­raeli officials were “openly speak­ing about a pre-emptive war under which Israel would strike first to significantly degrade Hezbollah’s capabilities before they could be used in a full-fledged conflict.”

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There has been a notable in­crease in recent weeks of Israeli air strikes against suspected arms shipments, including advanced weapons, inside Syria bound for Hezbollah, underlining Israeli leaders’ view that stronger pre-emptive action is required.

“These weapons have promoted a distinct sense of alarm inside Israel’s Kirya, their Pentagon,” analyst Jonathan Schanzer of the Washington-based Foundation for Defence of Democracies observed on April 29.

Fears grow that Israel might risk surprise strike to cripple Hezbollah | Middle East Online