Open your doors, O Lebanon – that fire may destroy your cedars! (Zechariah 11:1) – Part Two

Editor’s note: This post originally appeared on David’s Tent, a ministry of Israeli believers Avner and Rachel Boskey. The Boskey’s have ministered at Tabernacle of David, and we consider them trustworthy and Biblically sound.

Our previous newsletter (Part One) presented biblical teaching regarding Lebanon; the origin and theological strategies of the Islamist terror organization Hezbollah; and concluded with a survey of its venomous anti-Jewish, anti-Israeli and anti-American perspectives and goals. This newsletter (Part Two) unpacks Hezbollah’s role as an Iranian proxy and ‘fifth column’ within Lebanon. Part Three will deal with the specifics of its military threat to Israel; and Israel’s probable military response to Lebanon and to Hezbollah, the ‘Rasputin’ of the Land of the Cedars. For a more in-depth look at Lebanon’s spiritual history, see:



Exporting the Iranian Revolution


On November 2, 1969 Lebanese Army General Emile Bustani signed ‘The Cairo Agreement’ with Yasser Arafat, Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Chairman. This agreement surrendered Lebanese sovereignty to the PLO in districts adjacent to Israel, by removing local Palestinians from the control of Lebanon’s Deuxième Bureau and placing them under the authority of the PLO. After 1969, these Palestinian refugee camps became key bases for the Palestinian terror movement. The Agreement gave the right to Lebanese Palestinians “to join the Palestinians revolution through armed struggle” and become a state within a state in Lebanon. Within five years the Lebanese Army became incapable of controlling PLO activity, especially terror attacks on Israel and PLO attacks on Lebanese Christians. In April, 1975, the Lebanese Civil War broke out between the PLO and the Maronite/Phalange Christians. This led to Lebanese President Suleiman Frangieh asking Syria to intervene from the East in May 1976, while in March 1978 and then again in June 1982 Israel invaded from the South – after bloody PLO attacks on Israeli civilians and diplomats.


  • The PLO carries the main responsibility for catalyzing and subverting Lebanon, derailing its stability and prosperity and setting the scene for Hezbollah’s advent.



At that time, Iran was going through turmoil which eventually led to the overthrow of the Shah in January, 1979, and the establishment of a Shiite dictatorship under the control of Ayatollah Khomeini. But before that Islamist revolution, anti-Shah activists from Iran began arriving in Lebanon, and promptly received military training from the PLO.


In the early 1980’s, the long hand of the Islamic regime in Iran reached out toward Lebanon and created Hezbollah – a new organizational framework serving as a tool for spreading the Iranian revolution in Lebanon. Khomeini’s Iran persuaded prominent Lebanese Shiite leaders to abandon Amal, the previous leading Shiite organization in Lebanon, and to join Hezbollah’s ranks. Iran quickly became Hezbollah’s main source of economic, military, and political support. They dispatched 2,500 members of the Revolutionary Guards, who arrived in Lebanon in 1982. Two-thirds of them remained in Lebanon in the following years, solidifying Hezbollah’s power. To the present day, the Revolutionary Guards have been the principal channel connecting Iran’s Islamist revolutionary regime with Lebanese Hizbollah.


On November 5, 1989, the Taif Agreement was signed in Saudi Arabia, enabling Hezbollah to remain armed until ‘Israeli withdrawal’ which happened in 2000. Hezbollah then refused to disarm or withdraw, in violation of the Taif Accords.


The Agreement ‘established a framework’ for a complete Syrian withdrawal from Lebanon, scheduled for 1991 – though it only came to pass in 2005. The Agreement was supposed to end the 15 year-long Lebanese Civil War and reassert Lebanese governmental authority over South Lebanon. Rafik al-Hariri (later Lebanon’s Prime Minister) was the major catalyst in getting this agreement off the ground. Sixteen years later, in 2005 al-Hariri was assassinated in Beirut by Hezbollah. Seventeen days after signing the Taif Agreement, Lebanon’s President-elect René Moawad was assassinated in a West Beirut car-bombing near the Raml el-Zareef High School in November 22, 1989 as his motorcade returned from Lebanese Independence. Day ceremonies. Syrian Military Intelligence seems to have been involved here.


Iran-Hezbollah communication is conducted through the al-Quds Force, an elite Revolutionary Guards unit whose purpose is to export the Islamic revolution beyond Iran. This secret branch also guides Hezbollah and Hamas. Hezbollah terrorists and paperwork captured by Israel during the Second Lebanon War reveal that the al-Quds Force established and operated a training network to train Hezbollah members in the use of Iranian-supplied advanced weapons – even in Iran itself. This perspective is summed up in Hassan Nasrallah’s recent February 13, 2024 pronouncement: “The front in southern Lebanon is a front of support, assistance, solidarity, and participation in weakening the Israeli enemy until it reaches the point where it is convinced that it must stop its aggression. This front will only stop when the aggression against Gaza stops within an agreement with the Palestinian resistance.”


  • Iran transformed Hezbollah into a well-oiled, high-powered military machine, supplying tens of thousands of advanced missiles which can reach targets throughout Israel with a high degree of accuracy. Without Hezbollah, Tehran’s ability to deter Israel from operating against Iranian nuclear facilities is highly limited. Hezbollah is extremely important to Tehran.



Subsidizing the Iranian Revolution


In America, the watchmen on the walls include the CIA and the NSA. The majority of those employed at these two august organizations do not see events through a biblical framework, nor do they have a grid for God’s heart and calling on Israel. Nearly no one understands YHVH’s Last Days vision for the Middle East as laid out in the Hebrew prophets. The viewpoint of Robert Baer, former CIA case officer in the Directorate of Operations from 1976 to 1997 (serving in Iraq, Lebanon, Dushanbe, etc.) provides a fair representation of the perspectives that typify the American intelligence community. The movie Syriana starring George Clooney is based on experience Baer gained as a spy:


  • “In the Middle East, it’s about a people, the Arabs and the Iranians, who feel humiliated from the 19th century . . . [W]e are gradually moving into a war … against Islam – which you don’t want to do. There’s just too many people, there’s too many countries. They own the oil, most of the world’s oil resources, and hope we sidestep this . . . And one side [of this problem] is [our] support for Israel.”


  • And how important is Israel in American foreign policy? “It’s extremely important . . .  We support Israel for those two reasons, the Holocaust and democracy.”


  • “I don’t agree that Hezbollah itself is a terrorist organization. It delivers powdered milk; it takes care of people. It’s a social organization; it’s a political organization. It fights corruption . . . We can’t label [them] terrorists and fight Hezbollah as an organization in its entirety. We have to isolate the murderers and fight them . . .  Hezbollah itself is not a terrorist organization.”


  • Al Qa’eda and Hezbollah “are isolated individuals which don’t have anything to do with Islam in general.”


  • “We can only cope with these problems inasmuch as we solve the problem of Israel and Palestine. If we can implement U.N. Resolution 242, we can internationalize Jerusalem, do something about the right of return of Palestinians to Palestine. And then go to the Middle East and say, ‘All right, now it’s time to implement other U.N. resolutions’ . . . But it really does boil down to Israel, in a lot of ways.”


In another interviews, Baer elaborates:


  • RB – “I think it’s bizarre, in a very pragmatic sense, that America would be so strongly behind Israel. Simply in economic terms, it costs so much. I’m not just talking about direct aid, the billions we’ve given the military.
  • LT –  “So why are we supporting Israel so strongly?”
  • RB – “I just don’t know, I guess the Judeo-Christian idea. If it’s true that we have 60-90 million Evangelicals that believe that Israel has to exist at the end-times, that’s probably part of it. A part of it is guilt for the Holocaust.”


The fact is that Baer and others in the US intelligence community have a certain sympathy for Iran and Hezbollah. These same perspectives influence both Presidents and State Department officials in their Middle East realpolitik. Quite recently, both POTUS Barak Obama and POTUS Joe Biden released billions of dollars ($71.02 billion according to one investigative reportage) to Iran through deception, money which went straight to Iran’s support of Hezbollah and other terror groups, in a classic case of diplomatic obfuscation and fungibility.


The following quote is from Hassan Mneimneh’s October 29, 2020 articleIran in Lebanon: A Fatal Occupation’:



  • Much of Iran’s largesse goes to providing salaries and social services to Hezbollah members and fighters, incentivizing young Lebanese Shi’ites to join the organization and their families to embrace it. Hezbollah pays its Lebanese conscripts between $500 and $2000 a month, a substantial and alluring amount for young men which has enabled the organization to overcome recruiting shortages and supply manpower for the brutal fighting in Syria. Hezbollah also operates a Martyr’s Foundation, which provides financial assistance to the families of fallen soldiers in Syria ranging between $25,000 and $45,000, as well as health and social services. The most important Iranian aid organization operating in Lebanon is the Imam Khomeini Relief Committee (IKRC)whose Lebanese branch was designated by the U.S. Department of the Treasury in 2010 for “for being owned or controlled by Hezbollah and for providing financial and material support to Hezbollah.” The IKRC’s assets are controlled by Supreme Leader Khamenei, while its $2 billion budget is supplied primarily by the Iranian government, with about 25% coming from public donations and fundraising abroad.


  • Hezbollah’s totalitarianism is of a practical transactional character. Its subjects are attended to from the cradle to the grave, and beyond. They study in Hezbollah schools, get medical care in Hezbollah hospitals and clinics, train with Hezbollah troops then search for regular forces programs, work in Hezbollah enterprises, fight in Hezbollah wars, are provided compensations by Hezbollah civil defense for material losses endured as a result of hostilities, die in Hezbollah service, and have their families supported and cared for after their death by Hezbollah institutions. Most is done and rendered promptly and efficiently, with deliberate attention to dignified provision. This takes place in clear contradistinction to the rampant corruption and dysfunction across Lebanon and the region.



Encouraging the Iranian Revolution


The current events roiling the Middle East are mostly connected to Iran’s ravenous hunger to once again rule this region. It has carefully crafted a strategy which requires much patience. The strategy of encircling Israel – based on the Arabic term ‘Wahdat al-Saha’at’ (unity of the arenas) – lies behind Iran’s effort to gather its allies and all armed Islamist forces arrayed against Israel under a single Persian umbrella. Today Iran controls a contiguous area of control stretching from Syria’s Quneitra Province adjoining the Golan Heights, through southern Syria and into Iraq, where Tehran dominates the government and controls the Kata’ib Hezbollah Shiite paramilitary jihadi forces, and the Quwwāt al-Ḥashd ash-Shaʿbī or Popular Mobilization Units. Add to this the Houthi jihadi pirates in Yemen, and the picture sharpens in clarity.


Hamas’ and Hezbollah’s gnarled hands may be what the media and the diplomats see, but the voice is the voice of Iran (see Genesis 27:22). The policies taken by Western diplomats which dovetail with Hamas’ war strategies show a criminal lack of understanding in dealing with these jihadi forces and their cunning built up over the centuries. Though it seems that these are simply appeals for humanitarian aid, or mock horror at Hamas/civilian casualties, or the flipping of facts in accusing Israel of cruelty and genocide – these feckless political moves pour fuel on the jihadi fire and encourage the gray eminences of the Iranian Revolution.


One such example is Western diplomatic efforts to strike a deal with Hezbollah, allowing de-escalation of military tensions. Such a deal was signed on August 11, 2006; it is called UN Security Council Resolution 1701. It insisted that Hezbollah withdraw northward 18 miles from the Israeli border to the Litani River, and that it demilitarize. How did that work out? No part of the resolution was ever carried out by Hezbollah, while Israel fulfilled its obligation one-sidedly.


After the October 7, 2023 Hamas pogrom on Israeli civilians living in kibbutzim near Gaza, jihadi groups in southern Lebanon (including Hezbollah and Hamas) have been routinely firing rockets at Israeli cities and on IDF positions on the Israel-Lebanon border. On November 21, 2023, Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen warned the UNSC that a regional war was likely if UNSCR 1701 was not fully implemented. On January 8, 2024, Lebanese Foreign Minister Abdallah Bou Habib called for a diplomatic solution to the Israel-Hezbollah conflict through “full implementation” of the Resolution 1701 . . .



Resisting the Iranian Revolution


Those Lebanese who resisted Iran’s salami-slice annexation of Lebanon often paid with their lives for their bravery. Bachir Gemayal, Lebanese Forces Supreme Commander and later President of Lebanon,  was assassinated in Eastern Beirut on September 14, 1982 by a member of the Syrian Nationalist Party. It is conjectured that Syria’s President Hafez al-Assad was party to the planning and execution of Gemayel. Phalange Christian response to the assassination was the massacre of Lebanese Palestinians in Beirut’s Sabra and Shatila refugee camps.


On August 13, 2023, Lebanon’s top Christian cleric, Patriarch Bechara Boutros al-Rai spoke guardedly in his Sunday sermon, rebuking Hezbollah as a ‘state within a state,’ an irresponsible actor causing damage to Lebanon: “It is not possible to live on one land with more than one state, more than one legitimate army, more than one authority, and more than one sovereignty.”


On August 13, 2023 Samy Gemayel, the leader of the Lebanese opposition al-Kataib Party, said in a al-Hadath TV interview that “the Lebanese state has surrendered to Hezbollah. There is a green light for Hezbollah to transport weapons, also via residential areas. There is a great danger. What if the truck had contained explosives and the incident led to a huge explosion and hundreds of people were killed? We are not prepared to coexist with an armed militia in Lebanon, and this will be followed by practical steps, opposition meetings, and decisions.”


In October 2023 MP Fadi Karam of the Lebanese Forces party on told Radio Free Lebanon: “The decision on war [in Lebanon] is currently in the hands of Iran. [Iran’s principle of] ‘the unity of the fronts’ means revoking the sovereignty and the independence of Iraq, Syria and Lebanon.”


On November 1, 2021, Saudi Arabia banned all imports from Lebanon. Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister, Prince Faisal bin Farhan, said his country’s disengagement from Lebanon was prompted by “Hezbollah’s continuing dominance of the political scene.” Over that weekend, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Bahrain asked the Lebanese ambassadors in their capitals to leave as well. “Lebanon has been captured,” Ali Shihabi, a commentator close to the Saudi government, said about Riyadh’s thinking. “Nothing can be done except cut Lebanon off so its people also see the price of Iranian domination.”



How should we then pray?


  • Pray for followers of Yeshua worldwide to understand Iran’s destructive plans and strategies in using Hezbollah to sow destruction and destruction throughout the Middle East


  • Pray for the physical rescue of the approximately 120 Israeli hostages (including babies) kidnapped by Hamas, Islamic Jihad and PFLP/PLO.  At this moment some hostages are being tortured, raped and starved (this based on testimonies of recently released hostages). Sadly, many of these hostages are dead; Hamas is holding on to the corpses of Israeli citizens in cold storage to be used by them as bargaining chips


  • Pray for Hamas’ cruel terror dictatorship in Gaza to be decisively shattered and for all chains broken off the Palestinians living there, and for Iran’s role in jihadi deception, dissimulation and anti-Semitism to be exposed and opposed by world leaders


  • Pray for the raising up of Ezekiel’s prophetic Jewish army throughout the earth



Your prayers and support hold up our arms and are the very practical enablement of God to us in the work He has called us to do.


In Messiah Yeshua,


Avner Boskey
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