|The News Line: Feature
Monday, 8 January 2018
‘ISRAEL MAY START WAR IN THE REGION’ – Nasrallah
HEZBOLLAH leader, Sayyed Nasrallah, has said that Israel may start a war in the region and that Hezbollah is fully prepared for it.
In an interview with pan-Arab al-Mayadeen TV, Nasrallah clarified that the recent protests in Iran were sparked by economic factors and that external forces were seeking to exploit the protests. ‘When it comes to Iran, there is nothing I think that calls for concern,’ the resistance leader confirmed.
He further explained that: ‘The problem is not within the Iranian regime whose currents have been fully united, but the problem is caused by the banks’ bankruptcy,’ noting that: ‘The economic issue is one of the biggest challenges for Iran.’
In parallel, Sayyed Nasrallah highlighted: ‘The Iranian leadership has sought to quietly deal with the crisis and the protesters have been separated from the rioters. The benefit of the protests is that they have pushed the parties in Iran to discussion and cooperation. The protests formed a catalyst for serious treatments,’ he said.
According to Nasrallah: ‘US President Donald Trump is punishing Iran for its support for the Palestinian cause. The outcome of the recent protests in Iran will disappoint Trump. Trump’s hopes have been disappointed as will the hopes of all those who bet that the protests would grow and lead to the fall of the government and chaos in Iran,’ he added.
Nasrallah further stressed that the unrest was sparked when ‘America, Israel and Saudi Arabia entered the crisis in Iran.’ Commenting on the Palestinian cause and particularly occupied Al-Quds (Jerusalem), the resistance leader underscored that Trump’s recent decision to recognise occupied Al-Quds as the capital of the ‘Israeli’ apartheid entity-struck the so-called ‘peace process’ at its core and ended it.
‘The so-called “peace” process has repeatedly shown that it would lead to nowhere,’ he added. Nasrallah also emphasised that Hezbollah had repeatedly stressed the principle of coordination between the different Palestinian factions. ‘We discussed with the Palestinian factions activating the Intifada at home and abroad and providing support for it.’
Expressing Hezbollah’s readiness to seize every chance to offer support and arms to the resistance in Palestine, Sayyed Nasrallah declared the Lebanese resistance openness to all Palestinian factions because there is an agreement at least on Al-Quds. ''No one has the right to abandon a grain of soil, or a drop of water, or a letter in the name of Palestine. The Palestinian people won’t surrender,’ Nasrallah affirmed, warning that ‘Trump and Israeli PM Binyamin Netanyahu might be forcing the region to head towards war.’
In this context, Nasrallah went on to say: ‘The axis of the resistance’s project isn’t that of war but of resistance. However, the new thing is that Trump and Netanyahu might be forcing the region to head towards war. I am not saying that there will be one. However, it might take place.
‘If a large war erupts in the region, you don’t know where it will begin or how it will evolve,’ he added. ‘This will happen through a war on Gaza, Lebanon or even a war on Syria because of the failure of the scheme prepared for the country.’
Meanwhile, Sayyed Nasrallah urged: ‘The axis of the resistance must be prepared for this war and turn this threat into an opportunity. We must prepare surprises and sophisticated weapons for any future war,’ he confirmed, reiterating that: ‘The resistance is working day and night to get all kinds of arms that will allow it to rise victorious in any future war.’
Moreover, the Hezbollah Secretary General underscored that: ‘The Lebanese resistance has surprises and modern arms for any future war. If a great war takes place, all options are on table including to go beyond Galilee,’ he unveiled, assuring that: ‘The resistance in Lebanon is stronger than ever.’
Once again, Nasrallah explained that: ‘The axis of resistance is composed of Iran, Palestine, Syria, Lebanon and also Yemen.’ In addition, he underscored: ‘The relationship between Hezbollah, Hamas and Iran, and Hamas has not stopped in one day and today things are much better than before and we have returned to a normal relationship as in the past.’
Nasrallah also viewed that: ‘The Iranian Al-Quds Force is essential in preparing for the great war.
‘We’ve received a message from Ansarullah in Yemen that they were ready to send tens of thousands of fighters in case Israel launched a war even if the Saudi war didn’t stop on Yemen,’ he uncovered.
On another level, the resistance leader said: ‘Despite the fact that fighting Daesh (ISIS, ISIL) group is tougher than fighting Israel, it would have been possible to end Daesh earlier if it wasn’t for the American assistance. Our existence in the southern Syrian front worries Israel,’ he said, noting that: ‘The Israelis are afraid of transporting Ammonia tanks after we threatened that we’re going to target them.’
Sayyed Nasrallah further asserted that ‘Hezbollah is fully aware of the Israeli weak points.’
In addition, the resistance leader stated that Hezbollah is sure that Israel, with the support of the US, assassinated martyred leader, Imad Mughnyieh. On another level, Nasrallah unveiled that recent US administrations have tried to contact Hezbollah.
He highlighted, that Hezbollah had ‘received proposals from the Bush administration and former President Barack Obama’s intelligence to communicate with us. ‘I don’t think the Trump administration made any offers (recently). The last American attempt to communicate with us was after he was elected, but he had yet to be inaugurated.’
Nevertheless, Nasrallah detailed previous proposals by formed US President George Bush and his Vice President Dick Cheney. ''Cheney sent an offer with a person of Lebanese origins with an American passport in return for certain commitments. This offer came in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001, Al-Qaeda attacks,’ he explained.
According to Nasrallah: ‘They offered to remove us from the terrorist list, to release our detainees behind Israeli bars, to lift US opposition on Hezbollah’s participation in the Lebanese government, to open diplomatic channels with us as well as to give us $2bn and to keep our weapons, except for Katyusha weapons.
‘In return, we were asked to be committed not to use our weapons against Israel. We were allowed to keep them, but not to use them against Israel. We were asked not to provide any support, training or weapons to the Palestinians as well as to support the US against Al-Qaeda,’ he added.
Hezbollah, Sayyed Nasrallah unveiled: ‘I rejected Bush’s offer.’ He further noted that ‘Obama’s administration, via US intelligence agencies, tried to contact the party through intermediaries, but these also failed.’ On the same front, the resistance leader uncovered: ‘There’s informational cooperation with some European intelligence services. Cooperation focused on the fight against Daesh.’
Regarding Syria, Sayyed Nasrallah announced: ‘There is a big and general victory in Syria, but we can’t talk about a final one. However, the war on Syria is in its final stages. I’ve met Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad weeks ago,’ he mentioned, stressing that ‘Al-Assad’s candidacy for a new term is old and settled.’
He also stated: ‘When we talk about a great victory in Syria, we must talk about the main factor which is the Syrians and the personality of the Syrian President Al-Assad.’ Once again, Nasrallah reiterated Hezbollah’s commitment to defend Syria: ‘We won’t hesitate to defend Syria if it is under the Israeli aggression.’ In parallel, he confirmed that ‘Hezbollah entered Syria with a specific objective and the decision to leave Syria is linked to the Syrian leadership.’
Moving to the Lebanese front, Sayyed Nasrallah viewed that Lebanese PM Saad Hariri is excused not to declare that he was detained in Saudi Arabia. ‘The Saudi scheme was driving Lebanon into a civil war,’ he cautioned, pointing out: ‘The Saudi scheme included meetings in which the number of fighters and how to deliver weapons in the coming civil war was discussed.’
According to Nasrallah: ‘The Saudi scheme was to make Lebanon fall into a governmental vacuum and thus into chaos.’ He further mentioned: ‘Saudi Arabia’s allies have informed Lebanese officials of the Saudi scheme and France has data regarding that.’
On the continuous Saudi aggression on Yemen, Nasrallah predicted: ‘Because of the Saudi stubborn position, it seems that the Saudi aggression won’t end soon. Yemenis are not in a position to surrender in the face of Saudi Arabia, and the Saudis want a bloody victory in Yemen no matter what the cost is,’ he added, noting: ‘It seems that the war in Yemen is long and there is no contact with Saudi Arabia.’
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