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Published On: Thu, Jan 29th, 2015

Hezbollah & Israel clash over Israeli occupied Sheeba Farms

Fahwad Al-Khadoumi (nsnbc) : Two Israeli soldiers were killed and at least six were injured on Wednesday, when Hezbollah launched a limited missile attack against an IDF convoy with a high-ranking Israeli officer who toured and inspected the occupied territory. IDF forces launched a limited artillery response, fearing a tactical trap. The Israeli artillery fire caused the death of a Spanish UNIFIL soldier. Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu convened with senior Israeli military officers and informed the UN Security Council that “Israel will defend itself”. The Sheeba Farms and the Golan have been used by Israel to assist Jabhat al-Nusrah and other al-Qaeda-linked organizations to infiltrate into Lebanon and Syria.

Hezbollah_IDF_Sheeba Farms_Lebanon_Jan 2015The situation in northern Israel and in southern Lebanon is tense, report local nsnbc correspondents, stressing that for the time being, nobody knows whether either side would escalate or de-escalate the situation. Unusual IDF troop movements have been reported in the region and a source with information on Israel’s Air Force reports that “some unites have been assigned for special briefings”. 

The attacks were launched as a high-ranking Israeli officer was touring the Israeli occupied Lebanese Sheeba Farms, suggesting either wanted or unwanted leaks in Israeli intelligence.

UNIFIL_Lebanon_Israel shells Lebanon_jan 2015The death of the Spanish UNIFIL soldier occurred when Israeli Defense Forces launched a limited, tactical artillery response, targeting Lebanese villages.

The Israeli government informed the Spanish government about the fatality. Spanish Ambassador Roman Oyarzun Marchesi told the press in New York that Spain holds Israel accountable for the death of the Spanish citizen and that Spain demands a full investigation.

The Hezbollah owned Lebanese Al-Manar TV confirmed that Hezbollah fighters had targeted an Israeli military convoy composed of several armored vehicles and a senior military officer in the occupied Sheeba Farms area. Al-Manar confirmed that the attack was launched by fighters of its Al-Qunteira Martyrs Unit at approximately 11:25 a.m. The Hezbollah TV channel suggested that the operation was:

“…likely to have been motivated an Israeli air strike on January 18, that resulted in the death of six Hezbollah fighters and the death of an Iranian general”. 

Image: The UNDOF withdrawal leaves a 12 – 16 km wide corridor uncontrolled by the UNDOF. In 2013 it transpired that Israel is providing support for Jabhat al-Nusrah, which includes a joint intelligence and military operations room in the Israeli occupied Golan, logistic support, weapons, field hospitals, and direct combat support. (Map plotting by Christof Lehmann) Click on map to view full size.

Image: The Sheeba Farms are north of the Israeli occupied Syrian Golan. The UNDOF withdrawal in 2014 left a 12 – 16 km wide corridor uncontrolled by the UNDOF. In 2013 it transpired that Israel is providing support for Jabhat al-Nusrah, which includes a joint intelligence and military operations room in the Israeli occupied Golan, logistic support, weapons, field hospitals, and direct combat support. (Map plotting by Christof Lehmann) Click on map to view full size.

The Lebanese army condemned the shelling of Lebanese territory, stressing that Israeli artillery fired “at random targets along the demarcation line”.

Israel has held the Lebanese Sheeba Farms area occupied since the 1967 war. The Sheeba Farms area is located north of the Israeli occupied Syrian Golan. Israeli officials repeatedly and publicly stated that Israel considers both the Golan and the Sheeba Farms as “permanently annexed”. Such an annexation violates international law.

Israel has since the onset of the war on Syria in 2011 used both the occupied Golan and the Sheeba Farms area to provide logistical, tactical and direct military support for the Muslim Brotherhood linked Free Syrian Army as well as Jabhat al-Nusrah and other Al-Qaeda affiliated terrorist / mercenary brigades.

In October 2013 the Israeli occupied Golan and Sheeba Farms were used to infiltrate some 40,000 Jabhat al-Nusrah and Liwa-al-Islam fighters / mercenaries into Lebanon and the opening of a new, major battlefront in the Qalamoun region at the Lebanese – Syrian border.

In April 2014 the frontier area, including the Sheeba Farms, the Golan and the Israeli – Lebanese border, came under the command of the former Director of Israel’s military intelligence service, Brigadier General Aviv Kochavi. Kochavi, a protegé of Ariel Sharon, has a reputation for both “military ingenuity” as well as for “war crimes”.

Kochavi’s appointment in 2014 led to suggestions by nsnbc analysts that Israel plans to expand its military involvement and support of terrorist organizations operating against Syria and Lebanon and that Israel plans to widen its involvement in the war on Syria.

Consistent with the analysis based on Kochavi’s appointment, Israel, in October 2014, facilitated the opening of a 12-16 km wide gap in the UNDOF-controlled buffer-zone between the Israeli occupied Syrian Golan and Syrian controlled territory. (See map above)

The move gave Israeli and core NATO member state backed mercenaries freedom of movement in a large swap of the Golan and facilitated direct Israeli logistical as well as military support of the insurgents. The situation in southern Lebanon, the Golan and northern Israel remains tense as Israel is keeping all options covered and little actual, verifiable intelligence about its eventual moves is available.

F/AK – nsnbc 29.01.2015

About the Author

- Fahwad al-Khadoumi is a Palestinian, born in Syria in 1956. He began as editorial assistant in 2013 and became co-editor at nsnbc international in 2014. His editorial signature in as co-editor in nsnbc is F/AK - nsnbc ..date. He can be reached by e-mail at nsnbc.wordpress@gmail.com

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