'Homes in Lebanese villages won't be standing after next Israel-Hezbollah war'

The commander of the IDF's Galilee Formation, Brig.-General Moni Katz, gave an interview to Army Radio on Wednesday.

April 8, 2015 16:49
2 minute read.
An IDF soldier stands atop a tank near the Lebanese border

An IDF soldier stands atop a tank near the Lebanese border. (photo credit: REUTERS)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

The homes in Lebanese villages along the border with Israel "will no longer stand" in the event that the Lebanese Shi'ite group Hezbollah launches a ground offensive against Israel, the commander of the IDF's Galilee Formation, Brig.-General Moni Katz told Army Radio on Wednesday.

The officer said that he anticipated that the relative calm that has taken hold along the Israeli-Lebanese frontier will continue for the foreseeable future.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.

During Katz's tenure as the top IDF officer responsible for the force alignment near the northern border, there have been isolated cases of violence and flare-ups, though none have deteriorated into the kind of tit-for-tat fighting which led to the Second Lebanon War.

Nonetheless, Katz told Army Radio that Israel is ready for any scenario.

"[Hezbollah] is certainly planning ground operations," he said. "Perhaps it might succeed at one point or another, but I think what is most important is to gauge these things by how they end, not by how they begin."

"There's a dimension of psychology involved here," he said. "There's a need to understand that these events could happen, and we need to look at them with the proper sense of proportion. You can't defend a 130-kilometer long border and expect that no enemy fighter will succeed in crossing the boundary."

Katz said that Israel plans to install new fortifications along the border that will impede any Hezbollah attempts to infiltrate and cause havoc. Still, in the event that matters devolve into a wider conflict, the officer said that Israel will evacuate its residents from their homes, if need be.

"If the best defense we could provide our citizens entails evacuating them from a number of towns adjacent to the border, we will do it," he said. "We are prepared for such a scenario. Ultimately, the decision rests with the civilian leadership."

The brigadier-general said that the next war between Israel and Hezbollah will "look entirely different" from Lebanon's perspective.

"Hezbollah will receive an even harsher blow [than it did in 2006]," Katz said. "When it decides to construct an operational infrastructure throughout nearly all of the villages in the south, I think it understands the risk it is taking."

"It's hard to envision the homes in these villages, which are so close to the borderline, remaining standing after the next war," he said.

Related Content

An IDF soldier
August 21, 2018
IDF opens investigation into deaths of two Gazan teens