Summary of War in the North? Israel, Lebanon, Syria and Iran

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Tensions between Israel and Iran have reached an all-time high. Although the two states have engaged in a shadow war in Syria and Lebanon for decades, Israel’s recent attack on an Iranian drone base in Syria and Iran’s threat to retaliate have put stakeholders and international observers on high alert. Writing for Geopolitical Intelligence Services, Dr. Amatzia Baram of the University of Haifa outlines the risks and dilemmas Israel faces in regard to Iran’s expanding influence along Israel’s northern border. getAbstract recommends her assessment to anyone with a keen interest in the Middle East.  

In this summary, you will learn

  • Why tensions between Israel and Hezbollah could lead to a regional war,
  • What strategic dilemmas Israel faces, and 
  • Why Israel may choose to make a preemptive strike against Hezbollah in Lebanon. 
 

About the Author

Dr. Amatzia Baram is professor emeritus at the Department of the History of the Middle East and director of the Center for Iraq Studies at the University of Haifa, Israel.

 

Summary

Israel is bracing itself for renewed confrontation with Hezbollah in southern and central Lebanon. If the current cease-fire between the Jewish state and the Iranian proxy ends, fresh hostilities could potentially escalate into a regional war involving Lebanon, Iranian militias in Syria, Hamas in Gaza and possibly even Iraqi Shia forces. Although none of the parties involved appear eager to start a war, Israel may see its hand forced. For Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the construction of an Iranian missile factory in Lebanon and the establishment of an Iranian military base in Syria represent red lines. 


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