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

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. Part Two unpacked Hezbollah’s role as an Iranian proxy and ‘fifth column’ within Lebanon. Part Three deals with the specifics of Hezbollah’s military threat to Israel; and Israel’s probable military response both to Lebanon and to Hezbollah, the ‘Rasputin’ of the Land of the Cedars.  



The Prince of Persia is still on the move


“So Jacob came close to his father Isaac, and he touched him and said, ‘The voice is the voice of Jacob, but the hands are the hands of Esau’” (Genesis 27:22). There is a modern Middle Eastern parallel to Jacob’s utterance: In the present war between Lebanese Hezbollah and Israel, the voice may seem to be the voice of Hezbollah, but the hands are without question the hands of Iran/Persia. Iran’s long-term strategy to destroy Israel (and after that, Saudi Arabia and America) involves:


  • the controlled jihadi explosion of Hamas terrorism – pogroms, mass rapes, massive rocket attacks on Israeli civilians


  • the drone, rocket and missile attacks from Lebanese Hezbollah, Iraqi Kata’ib Hezbollah


  • the drone and missile attacks of Yemen’s Shiite Houthis, etc.


These are not disconnected ‘whack-a-mole’ wildfires; they are a controlled and deliberately kindled international forest fire planned and triggered by the Ayatollahs in the arsonist jihadi state of Iran


Iran’s geopolitical strategies are rooted in its control over Syrian territory, the crucial land connection to Lebanese Hezbollah. Hezbollah’s Secretary General, Hassan Nasrallah, has clearly stated that his organization is completely reliant on Iran for all of its financial expenses and its weapons. During the late 1980’s and early 1990’s, Syrian President Hafez al-Assad allowed Iran to transfer arms to Hezbollah. After Assad’s death in 2000, his son President Bashar al-Assad approved the increased traffic of Iranian weapons through Syria – including Scud and Fateh-110 surface-to-surface missiles. Today, Iran and Hezbollah have access to Syrian Army facilities and storehouses. Syria is not only a bridge between Iran and Lebanon; it has become the logistical and operational focal point of the Iranian-led ‘Axis of Resistance’ (Arabic, Miḥwar al-Muqāwamah). This axis is an Iranian-led political and military coalition in West Asia and North Africa, including the Iraqi Shiite Islamic Resistance, the Syrian government, Lebanese Hezbollah, the Yemeni Houthi terror organization Ansar Allah and Hamas.


Arms deliveries to Hezbollah start out from Iranian military depots and then run through Syria. Civilian and military Iranian flights carrying ordnance fly into Damascus International airport or into Beirut’s Hariri International airport. Civilian-marked trucks transfer these weapons (including advanced rockets, surface-to-surface missiles and anti-aircraft systems) from the Iranian logistics center in Damascus Airport to the Lebanese border, where they are handed over to Hezbollah, and later dispersed throughout Lebanon.


Between 2013 and 2015, Iran attempted to move precision guided missiles via Syria into Lebanon. Most of these efforts were interdicted by the IDF. Between 2016 and 2018 Iran’s strategy shifted: they now attempted to smuggle precision guided missile parts into Lebanon for assembly by Hezbollah – either by land (via Syria), by air (via Damascus to Beirut Airport in Beirut), or by sea (via the Port of Beirut). This program was not rewarded with a high rate of success. In 2019 Iran redirected their efforts, attempting to manufacture such missiles entirely on Lebanese soil, in a number of locations throughout Lebanon.



Lessons from Lebanon 2006


The upcoming war between Hezbollah and Israel is not the first in the Levant’s chequered history. The year 2006 saw major clashes between Lebanon and Israel, with Hezbollah dragging the weakened and spineless state of Lebanon along into its pitched battle with the Jewish state. Most media outlets downplay or even sidestep the fact that Lebanon is a sovereign state which has signed agreements (like UN 1701) requiring it to disarm Hezbollah and move the Iranian proxy away from Israel’s border where it continues to threaten and attack.


At the outbreak of the 2006 hostilities, Prime Minister Fouad Siniora promised to rein in Hezbollah in an effort to stop Israel’s offensive. Siniora said that there could be no sovereign state of Lebanon without Hezbollah being disarmed. The former President of Lebanon Amin Gemayel, a longtime critic of Hezbollah, said, “The government is helpless. Hezbollah took a unilateral action, but its repercussions will affect the entire country.” Nevertheless, international law holds the Lebanese government responsible for whatever attacks come against Israel from Lebanese soil. Ehud Barak, former Israeli Chief of Staff, remarked on November 24, 2009: “We will not accept the equation whereby a UN member state is home to a militia in possession of 40,000 rockets but also parliament members and ministers. The Lebanese government is responsible for any clash rather than [just] the Hezbollah, and all of Lebanon’s systems will be held accountable.”


The Second Israel-Lebanon War began with a surprise Hezbollah cross-border attack on July 12, 2006, resulting in the murder of five IDF soldiers patrolling the border fence, and the kidnapping of two of their bodies, to be later used as bargaining chips. Israel’s counter-offensive Operation Just Payback/Change of Direction, lasted for 34 days. A thorough analysis of the decision-making steps and strategic issues involved can be read in Benjamin Lambeth’s excellent September 1, 2011 articleBehind Israel’s 2006 War With Hezbollah.’


During the war, Hezbollah fired close to 4,228 rockets into civilian areas of Israel (more than 100 per day). Most of these were 122 mm Katyusha artillery rockets, carrying warheads of up to 33 kg/ 66 lb. Approximately 23% of the rockets hit cities and built-up areas in northern Israel. Cities hit included, Kiryat Shmona, Tiberias, Bet She’an, Safed, Karmiel, Shaghur, Ma’alot-Tarshiha, Nazareth, Afula, Acre, Haifa, Hadera – as well as smaller towns, kibbutzim, moshavim, Druze and Israeli-Arab villages, and the northern West Bank. Fires caused by Hezbollah rocket attacks destroyed 16,500 acres (67 km2) of forest and grazing fields, which will take 50 to 60 years to rehabilitate, according to the Jewish National Fund.


On July 16, 2006, eight employees of the Israel Railways were killed by direct Hezbollah rocket hits on the Haifa train depot. In southern Lebanon, Hezbollah jihadis fought IDF ground troops from well-fortified positions, often in urban areas, attacking in small, well-armed units. These fighters were highly trained, equipped with flak jackets, night-vision goggles, communications equipment, and sometimes with Israeli uniforms and equipment. An Israeli soldier who participated in the war said that Hezbollah fighters were “nothing like Hamas or the Palestinians. They are trained and highly qualified. All of us were kind of surprised.” One million Israelis were instructed to stay near or in their bomb shelters or security rooms, with approximately 250,000 Israeli civilians evacuating the north and relocating to other areas of the country, A total of 44 Israeli civilians and 119 IDF soldiers were killed in this war.


On July 13, 2006, and again on July 15, the Israeli Air Force (IAF) bombed the Jiyeh power station, 30 km (19 miles) south of Beirut, resulting in the largest-ever oil spill in the Mediterranean Sea. The plant’s damaged storage tanks leaked an estimated 12,000 to 15,000 tonnes (more than 4 million gallons) of oil into the eastern Mediterranean. A 10-kilometre-wide (6.2 mi) oil slick covered 170 km (105 statute miles) of coastline, and threatened the coastal areas of Turkey and Cyprus. The Lebanese government estimated it would take 10 years to recover from the damage of the strike. The UN guesstimated the cost for the initial clean-up at $64 million. Large parts of Lebanon’s civilian infrastructure were destroyed, including 640 kilometers (400 miles) of roads, 73 bridges, and 31 other targets such as ports, water and sewage treatment plants, electrical facilities, 25 fuel stations, 900 commercial structures, up to 350 schools and two hospitals, and 15,000 homes. Some 130,000 more homes were damaged. Beirut’s Rafik al-Hariri International Airport was bombed and forced to close, but was quickly repaired and came back on line.


Hezbollah used the same tactics of civilian shields in 2006 as Hamas has been using in all it clashes with Israel: the firing of rockets from Gazan or Lebanese civilian areas into Israeli civilian areas – a double war crime. The Qatari Muslim Brotherhood/pro-Hamas station al-Jazeera reported at that time: “Foreign journalists based in Lebanon also reported that the Shia militia chose to fight from civilian areas and had on occasion prevented Lebanese civilians from fleeing conflict-hit areas of south Lebanon. Al-Manar, Hezbollah’s satellite channel, also showed footage of Hezbollah firing rockets from civilian areas and produced animated graphics showing how Hezbollah fired rockets at Israeli cities from inside villages in southern Lebanon.” Images obtained by the Australian Sunday Herald Sun show that “Hezbollah is waging war amid suburbia. The images … show Hezbollah using high-density residential areas as launch pads for rockets and heavy-caliber weapons. Dressed in civilian clothing so they can quickly disappear, the militants carrying automatic assault rifles and ride in on trucks mounted with cannon.” Some things never change with jihadi combatants, it seems.


On August 27, 2006, Nasrallah said in an interview with al-Jadeed TV (Lebanon): “If there was even a 1% chance that the July 11 capturing operation would have led to a war like the one that happened, would you have done it? I would say no, absolutely not, for humanitarian, moral, social, security, military, and political reasons.”


Israeli military historian Martin van Creveld stated that Israel’s war against Hezbollah was “marked by a long series of failures” but he also noted that Hezbollah was “thrown out of South Lebanon,” and was replaced by “a fairly robust United Nations peacekeeping force” to prevent its return. The Israeli Winograd Commission reported that “Security Council Resolution 1701, and the fact that it was adopted unanimously, were an achievement for Israel.” But both of these ‘achievements’ were quickly reversed within a year or two of the war’s conclusion.


The US Congressional Research Service found that although Hezbollah’s military capabilities may have been substantially reduced, its long-term potential as a guerrilla movement appeared to remain intact: “Observers note that Hezbollah’s leaders have been able to claim a level of ‘victory’ simply by virtue of not having decisively ‘lost.’”


Military analyst and former IDF Major-General Giora Eiland concluded that, though outgunned and outnumbered, Hezbollah managed to hold off Israel’s advanced armed forces and proved its ability to damage Israel by launching rockets at its territory until the end of the war. He estimates (“Hezbollah planning ‘large raids’ into Galilee, senior army source says”) that Hezbollah’s destructive capabilities have increased in the years after the war and that the group is capable to inflict “far worse damage on the Israeli home front” than in 2006.


British military historian John Keegan states (“Why Israel will go to war again – soon”) that the outcome of the 2006 war was “misreported as an Israeli defeat” due to anti-Israel bias in the international media. He stated that Hezbollah had suffered heavy losses, and that a ceasefire came into effect before Israel could completely dislodge Hezbollah from its positions. He also noted that the casualties sustained by Israel during the war had alarmed the Israeli Government and High Command, because Israel’s small population is acutely vulnerable to losses in battle.



Battle inventory


It is assumed that the news media of the world are not freely allowed into Hezbollah’s weapons warehouse to do a full inventory. Yet, it seems that the Israeli Mossad has been able to do just that at Iran’s nuclear archives.


Nevertheless, a combination of Iranian and Hezbollah disclosures combined with intelligence breakthroughs have revealed a basic understanding of what armaments Hezbollah has at its disposal.


Here are seven articles detailing the weaponry in Nasrallah’s hands. These include rockets, rockets with GPS, precision-guided missiles, drones, etc.:


August 10, 2021


February 21, 2022


October 19, 2023        


November 15, 2023


February 26, 2024


June 6, 2024      


June 26, 2024    



For those who want a ‘fast food’ perspective, it is suggested that the link presents helpful graphics and a clear mini-summation:


The paragraph quoted below also briefly sums up the available facts:


  • According to one estimate based on open publications, Hezbollah has approximately 40,000 Grad type rockets with a short range of 15-20 km; approximately 80,000 Fajr 3 and 5, Khyber, or Ra’ad 2 and Ra’ad 3 medium-long range rockets – up to 100 km; and approximately 30,000 rockets and long-range missiles (the Zelzal and the Fatah 110-M600 missiles – range of up to 200-300 km). The organization also received a limited number of Scud C and D missiles from Syria with a range of 700 km. Several hundred Fatah 110 projectiles, which carry about 500 kg of explosives, are equipped with precise GPS-based navigation mechanisms and have considerable accuracy and destructive potential. Hezbollah is also equipped with high-quality C802 surface-to-air missiles, made in China, and the Russian-made Yakhont; sophisticated and improved Kornet anti-tank missiles, capable of launching mortar bombs; and anti-aircraft missiles of the SA-17 and SA-22 types, capable of hitting UAVs and helicopters. In addition, the fighting force is equipped with UAVs [attack drones], most of them self-produced for attack and intelligence missions to a range of up to 400 km and hundreds of drones for various tactical missions. On top of these are additional capabilities in the digital and electro-optical dimension.


Apart from these, Hezbollah has networks of tunnels (some probably crossing under the border into Israel, through which ‘Radwancommando teams can move and attack).



Are you ready?


Messiah Yeshua shared some words of wisdom with Israel nearly 2,000 years ago:


  • “For which one of you, when he wants to build a tower, does not first sit down and calculate the cost, to see if he has enough to complete it? Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who are watching it will begin to ridicule him, saying, ‘This person began to build, and was not able to finish!’ Or what king, when he sets out to meet another king in battle, will not first sit down and consider whether he is strong enough with ten thousand men to face the one coming against him with twenty thousand? Otherwise, while the other is still far away, he sends a delegation and requests terms of peace” (Luke 14:28-32)


Here are six articles reflecting the perspectives of some senior military, strategic and national security analysts, regarding the upcoming possibilities, scenarios and challenges facing Israel in the days soon ahead. They are thought-provoking and are a great impetus for intercession. Their points must be weighed and prayerfully considered. Not everything which is stated in these articles will come to pass. Consider their perspectives prayerfully:









The following is an excerpt from Dr. Ehud Eilam, a highly respected analyst of Israel’s national security. He is a contributor to Israel Defense. His suggested scenario is an eminently possible one:


  • The IDF has many more weapons and much more manpower than Hezbollah – but Hezbollah has up to 150,000 projectiles aimed at Israel. All of Israel is within Hezbollah’s missile range, but it would primarily target the north of the country. The sheer quantity of rockets available to Hezbollah means that Israel’s defense systems such as the Iron Dome would only be able to intercept some of them. The only way to completely stop the firing of missiles and rockets would be to run a large-scale offensive inside Lebanon.


  • The IAF has been training to launch thousands of sorties aimed at destroying Hezbollah targets, mainly its rockets. But the IAF might not be able to accomplish this mission by itself, especially if rockets hit its airfields. Israel might have no alternative but to also conduct a major ground offensive.


  • This would not be like 2006, when Israel hesitated and was reluctant to carry out a large-scale land attack for fear of incurring heavy casualties. In the next war the concept might be the opposite. In other words, reducing Israeli casualties, both on the front line in Lebanon and in the Israeli rear, might require starting the war with a large-scale ground attack.


  • Many in the IDF seek to prove that Israel is willing to carry out a ground offensive, even if its costs might be high. The concept is that Israel’s foes should not assume that Israel is afraid to put its ground units in harm’s way and will always prefer to rely on air power. In the Gaza Strip operations of 2008-09 and in 2014, Israel conducted limited ground attacks and depended on the IAF.


  • But Israel should not launch a ground offensive just to prove a point if conditions are not right. If there is a limited confrontation and both sides express their willingness to end it soon, then sending ground units into Lebanon could pointlessly extend the war. Starting a war with a major attack is not always the right option.


  • The IDF might penetrate deep into Lebanon, advancing dozens of kilometers on the ground. Israeli ground units probably will not reach Beirut as they did in 1982, but they might advance further than they did in 2006. Long-range penetrations might be carried out not with armor but with airborne assaults. Crack units such as the new 89th commando brigade (established in 2015) can land from the air. These would be risky operations as Israeli troops would be isolated far behind enemy lines, receiving help mostly from aircraft that would deliver supplies and provide fire support.


  • The IDF would not stay there for long. The goal would be to annihilate Hezbollah’s rockets and then withdraw. It would be like a large-scale raid, not a conquest. Israel would not go back to the 1990s, when it was entangled in an endless fight inside Lebanon that cost it dearly.


  • Elite units such as the 401st armored brigade would advance on the ground. The IDF would rely on Merkava Mark 3 and 4 tanks and heavy armored personal carriers (the Achzarit and the Namer, together with the old M-113). The IDF’s sophisticated C4I (Command, Control, Communications, Computers, and Intelligence) network would assist too, but the IDF should not depend on it too much in case it fails.


  • Senior Israeli officials have warned several times about the severe ramifications of turning Lebanon into a fire base against Israel. Hezbollah deliberately hides its rockets in urban areas. Israeli firepower, aimed at the rockets in those areas, would inevitably inflict substantial collateral damage.


  • If Hezbollah opens fire first, targeting Israeli cities, it will force Israel to react immediately and in a massive way. An Israeli preemptive strike is unlikely, though surprise is crucial in capturing Hezbollah off guard.


  • The IDF has an overwhelming edge over Hezbollah, but the latter has relative advantages, mainly its missiles/rockets. The two sides will continue to try to avoid a costly war, but a war might still occur – against the will of one or even both of them.




Staring down the cobra


According to updated assessments (, Hezbollah currently possesses between 120,000-140,000 short-range rockets (range of 25-28 miles), which cover Israel’s north, including Haifa Bay and Tiberias; several thousand medium-range rockets (range of 56 miles), which can reach the Sharon coastal plain and northern suburbs of Gush Dan; and several hundred long-range rockets and missiles (range of hundreds of miles), including Scud missiles from Syrian military warehouses, capable of hitting targets anywhere in Israel. Hezbollah’s rockets and missiles are dispersed throughout Lebanon. Its short-range rockets are mostly stored in the country’s south, in the area near the Israeli border, to maximize their range. They are hidden in homes in the 230 Shiite villages, ready to be activated at a moment’s notice. It is from here that Hezbollah intends to rain fire on the Galilee, and essentially paralyze it. If the IDF decides to enter these villages on the ground to stop this barrage, it will be met with an array of fortifications and ambushes.”


According to a recent IDF Home Front Command report ( roughly 1,000-1,500 rockets and missiles will be launched into Israel per day. Thousands of homes will be hit and hundreds of Israeli civilians will be injured or killed. Hundreds of thousands are expected to be evacuated from their homes.


The majority of Hezbollah’s rockets, however, are ‘dumb’ rockets. One cannot control where they hit, and a large number of rockets need to be launched to inflict real damage. On the other hand, a key Hezbollah precision-guided missile is the M-600 (‘Tishrin’) of Syrian manufacture. Its range is 250 kilometers (155 miles); it carries a half-ton warhead and is accurate to dozens of yards from the target. Such missiles can strike IDF HQ (the Kirya) in Tel Aviv. Hezbollah’s goal in war would be to hit strategic facilities (power, electricity and water-pumping stations), air force and army bases, government buildings in Jerusalem, etc. The IDF would hit similar structures in Lebanon, as well as national sewage systems, bringing that country ‘back to the Stone Age’ as has been repeatedly warned by top Israeli brass.


Hezbollah has made use of what are called its ‘nature reserves’ – fortified networks of underground tunnels, hidden rocket launchers, and interconnected passages allowing Hezbollah fighters to pop out and destroy IDF ground forces. These are sometimes connected to civilian housing with newly constructed ‘extra’ garages. These challenging threats to Israeli security will need to be met by powerful and neutralizing counter-responses.


On August 8, 2023 Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant publicly addressed Hassan Nasrallah while visiting the Har Dov region of Mount Hermon (overlooking Hezbollah forces in South Lebanon): “You have made mistakes in the past, you have paid very heavy prices. If an escalation or conflict develops here, we will return Lebanon to the Stone Age. We will not hesitate to use all our power, and erode every inch of Hezbollah and Lebanon if we have to.” On June 27, 2024 he repeated that same threat while visiting Washington DC: “We do not want war, but we are preparing for every scenario. Hezbollah understands very well that we can inflict massive damage in Lebanon if a war is launched.” Gallant stressed that Israel’s military is capable of taking Lebanon “back to the Stone Age.”


  • Were Hezbollah to launch an all-out missile, rocket and drone attack on Israel, combined with a ground incursion, it is likely that the IAF would move to take out Beirut’s waterworks, its sewage system, and its electricity grids. Beirut’s main airport, bridges and superhighways would in all likelihood be destroyed. This would cause a massive population exodus toward northern Lebanon, Syria and Turkey.




Standing with the armies of YHVH of armies


As the seconds tick off in Israel and Lebanon, as the populations of both countries face the very real possibility of a massively destructive clash, it is a good time to intensify our prayers for this situation.



How should we then pray?


  • Pray for the leaders of Israel to receive strategies, wisdom and discernment – divine counsel on how to deal decisively with Hezbollah, Iran and the other unfriendly players involved. Specifically, pray that they will receive revelation, like Elisha gave to the King of Israel when facing the threat from the North (see 2 Kings 6:8-23)


  • 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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