There is a lot happening in the Middle East right now, and its hard to know if things between Israel and Lebanon/Hezbollah/Syria are related to the recent Iranian threats targeted for February 11.
Below are some quotes from an interesting analysis that has been circulating today (the full article is definitely worth reading). This analysis makes a very compelling case that war is just on the brink in northern Israel, between Israel and Lebanon/Hezbollah/Syria:
"A devastating war between Israel and Hezbollah is on the horizon"
*Israel is preparing to invade Lebanon with massive ground troops.
*Israel will not spare any kind of weaponry, including phosphorous and cluster bombs.
*Israel is secretly evacuating its northern region residents.
*Israel intends to create a new security zone inside Lebanon, south of the Litani to enhance her long term occupation.
"While the war of words is escalating around the clock between Israel on the one side and Hezbollah and Syria on the other, analysts in the Middle East and Europe strongly believe that war is inevitable and will break out within a few months."
"In this scary context, senior Lebanese sources told the Saudi daily Al-Okaz that Hezbollah has announced emergency readiness in all areas of the country where it operates. Senior figures of the organization were asked to exercise greater caution in their movements amid fears they would be targeted by Israel. Hezbollah’s leaders are bragging that they are capable of defeating, humiliating and destroying Israel’s war machine."
"In a report written by Hamid Ghoriafi, Middle East analyst and journalist, that was published today by the Kuwaiti Daily Al-Seyassah, Ghoriafi drew a very dim picture for the whole situation and predicted a very devastating imminent war that will be according to the Israelis the last one with on their northern borders. Below are some excerpts from this report:
*Reliable European intelligence reports in London unveiled on Monday an extensive secretive Israeli ongoing operation to evacuate hundreds of families living in the Galilee settlements adjacent to the border with Lebanon to safer locations inside Israel, especially west Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and surrounding areas. These families are transported by trucks and buses and priority is given to families with many children, the elderly and the physically disabled. The evacuees' houses are put under the control of the Northern Military Command for reasons not yet known.
*The report quoted the Israeli defense sources saying that the war will actually begin in the northern region of the Litani Rriver and all though the Bekaa Valley and eastern Lebanese mountainous areas that separate Syria and Lebanon because the presence of Hezbollah in the south of the Litani is no longer as heavy as it was in 2006. The UNIFIL troops took control of this region after the 2006 war. The report disclosed that the backbone of the coming Israeli war will be based on two plans:
The first plan is for extensive jet plane aerial bombardment of Hezbollah's scattered military weaponry caches and missile bases with phosphorus and cluster bombs, replicating the kind of devastation the southern suburbs of Beirut (Hezbollah's ministate) suffered during the 2006 war.
The second plan is to execute for the first time, air-landing operations behind Hezbollah's lines after weakening and destroying its bases in the south, Bekaa Valley and Beirut."
"The report said that 60% of the Israeli air force has already been put on full alert and is well prepared for action on the first day of the coming war in an extensive attack on the Lebanese. Israel is planning to fulfill all its objectives and finish the war within a few weeks. The remaining 40% of the Israeli air force will be ready to join in swiftly and effectively if the Syrian army gets involved."
"The same French report added that Israel is determined to make this war the last one on her northern borders. The Jewish military command will not spare any advanced and destructive kind of weaponry that is stored in its caches. Hezbollah will not be the only target within the Shiite regions that are under its control, but also the Lebanese army, all Lebanese institutions and infrastructure. Israel is well convinced that Hezbollah is in full control of the Lebanese government and accordingly its army will not spare the country's infrastructure as was the situation in the 2006 war. Israel is planning to end Hezbollah the same way it ended the PLO in the 1982-1983 war."
There is much more to this analysis, including the contingency plans for Israel to "deal" with Syrian and any Palestinian involvement. Additionally, the article above describes a plan for Israel to develop a demilitarized zone in Northern Israel, with new airports and troops. This area has been under the "control" of UNIFIL troops since 2006, and has been a disaster. To quote the article:
"All technical and logistic equipments required for the erection of these two airports are already in locations situated behind the front lines of the Israeli army that is extensively present on the northern border. Analysts say that this kind of preparations gives the impression that Israel is definitely planning for a long-term occupation to the south Litani area."
The plan sounds both definitive and imminent.
Of course, this is one opinion. However, there have been many such reports over the past two weeks, reports that are entirely consistent with this one. As the saying goes, "where there is smoke there is fire", and there has been a lot of smoke in the region lately.