Hizballah continues to discuss battle plans for its next war with Israel, promising to take a much heavier toll on the Israeli people than the 2006 conflict in Lebanon. In recent weeks, Hizballah leader Hassan Nasrallah has held a series of meetings with the group's senior military commanders to prepare the group for a future war, which reportedly include plans to fire missiles at Tel Aviv, seize parts of the Galilee, and take Israelis hostage.
Hizballah forces say they are training to fire at least 10,000 missiles at Israeli maritime facilities, military installations and airfields and cities at the outset of the next war, said a new research paper from retired Israel Defense Force (IDF) Brig. Gen. Shimon Shapira, a senior research associate at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA). It also will try to occupy the Galilee region – an operation Hizballah forces have been training for since February.
Hizballah's plan includes a fighting force comprised of five brigades which have been trained in Iran – each with 1,000 soldiers – who would be responsible for seizing a different area in the Galilee.
One brigade would occupy the coastal town of Nahariya, with part of the Hizballah force arriving by speedboat. Others would capture different sections of Northern Israel in order to take hostages, block travel from Acre to Safed, and drain IDF resources by forcing it to send reinforcements to dislodge enemy forces. Hizballah also hopes to use land mines to deter the Israeli military from targeting terrorist bases in the Bekaa Valley, a Syrian-dominated region in the eastern part of Lebanon, Shapira wrote.
It is unclear whether Syrian President Bashar al-Assad can help Hizballah's plans as he wages a brutal war against his own people to remain in power. A Lebanese newspaper that is sympathetic to Hizballah Oct. 27 that Assad and Nasrallah had met several days before in Damascus, Shapira wrote. The newspaper published a correction the following day, denying that the meeting had occurred, possibly a reaction to Assad's unpopularity in the Arab world.
Read Shapira's full paper here.