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Hezbollah video warns Israel of ‘disaster from the north’ 

Hezbollah supporters during a rally in Beirut on 28 May, 2015 [Anadolu Agency]
Hezbollah supporters during a rally in Beirut on 28 May, 2015 [Anadolu Agency]

A new video showing elite Hezbollah forces in training has been circulated on social media on the 20th anniversary of the liberation of south Lebanon from Israel’s military occupation.

Described as an “unofficial” Hezbollah video, it features members of its elite commando unit, the Radwan Force, demonstrating their shooting and unarmed combat skills. It also includes Qur’anic and Biblical verses along with Hebrew and English translations. The partially quoted verse from chapter 9 (“Repentance”) of the Qur’an refers to the pre-Islamic pagan Arabs who continued hostilities after peace treaties had been agreed. The Biblical quote from the Book of Jeremiah says, “From the north disaster will be poured out on all who live in the land”.

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According to the Times of Israel, the Radwan Force is believed to have been established eight years ago. However, Hezbollah, which was originally formed in response to the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982, has been training its special forces since the 1990s. They are tasked with “crossing into Israel in future conflict and causing as much mayhem and destruction as possible.”

Lebanon celebrates Resistance and Liberation Day annually on 25 May to commemorate the Israeli withdrawal from southern Lebanon in 2000. Last month, it was reported that the withdrawal still haunts surviving Israeli soldiers who were stationed there. In an interview on Saturday with Israel Hayom, the former Chief of Staff for the Israeli military, General Gadi Eisenkot, conceded that Israel had paid a “heavy strategic price”.

Last week, the military correspondent for the Times of Israel, Judah Ari Gross, wrote that twenty years on from the withdrawal, Hezbollah is stronger than ever and battle hardened due to experience gained fighting in neighbouring Syria and expanding its operations near the border along the Israeli-occupied Syrian Golan Heights.

During a speech marking International Quds Day last Friday, Hezbollah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah said, “‘Israel’s regime acknowledges its failure in preventing the build-up of the resistance power in Lebanon.”

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