Hezbollah, Israel, and a Fragmenting Middle East

January 29, 2015 3:35 PM

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On Wednesday, it looked like an old battle in Lebanon and Israel might be reignited. By Thursday, it looked like tensions had declined. In a statement labelled Communiqué No. 1 (implying that there would be others tied to the event), the Lebanese Shiite militant group Hezbollah claimed responsibility for an attack on an Israeli convoy on Wednesday morning, in the Shebaa Farms area, a disputed Israeli-occupied tract of land at the junction of Israel, Syria, and Lebanon. The attack left at least two Israelis dead, and seven wounded. Ensuing clashes between the two sides also killed a U.N. peacekeeper and threatened to blow open a front that had largely been dormant since the devastating war between Hezbollah and Israel in 2006.

Hezbollah said that the ambush was retaliation for an Israeli strike in Syria on January 18th, which killed an Iranian general and six Hezbollah men, including Jihad Mughniyeh, the son of Hezbollah’s revered strategic mastermind, Imad Mughniyeh, who was assassinated in Syria, in 2008, in an attack w...

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