Source: Fox News
Wednesday, November 23, 2022
Hezbollah has transported hundreds of missiles with a chemical payload to a warehouse near the Lebanese-Syrian border.
"Despite the severe unrest, humanitarian crises and the unraveling of the Lebanese state, Hezbollah continues to focus its resources on acquiring and developing game-changing military capabilities that it intends to deploy against Israel, directly funded by Iran," retired Brigadier General Amir Avivi, the CEO and founder of the Israel Defense and Security Forum, told Fox News Digital.
Avivi's comments come after Sunday reports in the Saudi Al-Hadath news that Hezbollah has moved 110 Fajr missiles and over 300 Fateh missiles to Al Qusayr, Syria, near the Lebanese border. The missiles carry thionyl chloride, a toxic chemical which was reportedly injected into the missiles by experts from North Korea under the supervision of Iranian chemical weapons expert, Qassem Abdullah Massoudyan.
The missiles were then transported by Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps to the border, putting them closer to being capable of threatening Israel.
In the past, Israel has shown a willingness to strike Syrian chemical weapons facilities, most recently striking a site near Maysaf in August. Maysaf was also the site of one of three Israeli strikes last year, according to a Washington Post report.
However, Avivi argues recent policies have weakened Israel's ability to defend itself.
"The gas deal signed between Lebanon and Israel during the last seconds of the outgoing interim Israeli government weakened Israeli deterrence and has emboldened Hezbollah and other Iranian proxies, who saw Israel folding under the threat of military force," Avivi said.
Avivi called on Israel to avoid being complacent amid the new reports, arguing the country should keep all options on the table when dealing with Iran.
"Israel must not be misled by the apparent quiet along the Blue Line, and must continue to undermine Iranian proliferation efforts by all means at its disposal, militarily and diplomatically," he said. "Stopping a Shiite terror organization from obtaining chemical weapons is first and foremost an Israeli priority, but the U.S. and Europe should be almost equally concerned with the proliferation of unconventional weapons – and act accordingly."
Meanwhile, Israel's TPS news agency reported that Israeli authorities will hold a chemical attack drill in parts of Tel Aviv on Tuesday. The drill will simulate a chemical strike against the Tel Aviv light railway system.