Hezbollah Chief Vows Retaliation for Israeli Assassination
by Stephen Lendman
Targeted assassinations are an Israeli specialty – cold-blooded murder by any standard.
On December 19, Lebanese Palestine Liberation Front commander Samir Kuntar was at his Jaramana, Syria home, east of Damascus. An Israeli airstrike murdered him.
His younger brother Bassam tweeted the news, saying “(w)ith honor, we mourn Cmdr. Samir Kuntar, and we proudly join the cavalcade of the martyr’s families.”
Kuntar knew his time would come, earlier saying “(t)he most important thing is that even if Israel assassinated me, the path of resistance in Syria started and nobody can stop it.”
He’s a former Israeli political prisoner. Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah said “Israeli threats on martyr Kuntar’s life existed from the day he was released, even before the issue of the popular resistance in the Golan Heights was discussed.”
Mourning the man he respected, he called him “one of us,” at the same time saying “(i)t’s our right to seek revenge and we will practice this right. Let this be known to everyone.”
He minced no words accusing Israel of “carr(ying) out the assassination. It was a roaring military operation, not a silent ambiguous intelligence attack.”
“I repeat what I said in January 2015. Whenever any cadre from the Islamic resistance is killed, we will hold Israel responsible and we will respond” in our own way at a time and place of our choosing.
Kuntar was part of the Syrian resistance for the liberation of occupied Golan, working in coordination with Hezbollah, aided by Nasrallah and Iranian Major General Qasem Soleimani, successfully enlisting supporters, providing funding, weapons and training.
An unnamed Syrian source said “Israel’s efforts to hit the Syrian resistance before it gets bigger and stronger indicates how much they (fear) this front.”
“Israel can’t tolerate seeing this resistance embryo grow and become a real threat.” The operation to execute Kuntar was OK’d in Washington. Both nations notoriously partner in each other’s high crimes.
Responding to Israel’s request, the State Department declared Kuntar a “specially designated global terrorist” – equating justifiable freedom fighting with criminality.
Nasrallah reportedly rejected an unnamed German official’s attempt to dissuade him from retaliating. The decision to act was made, and there’s no turning back, he said, regardless of Israel’s likely response.
“The Israelis are worried, and they should be worried along the border, inside Israel and outside of it. (They’re) hiding like rats along the border.”
He discounted typical Israeli threats, adding he “cannot tolerate that the blood of our jihadist fighters and brothers be shed anywhere in this world.”
IDF Chief of Staff Lt. General Gadi Eisenkot warned Israel is “ready for every challenge,” vowing “harsh results” if Hezbollah retaliates.
The airstrike killing Kuntar and eight of his associates was the latest in a long line of Israeli extrajudicial executions throughout its sordid history, continuing daily against defenseless Palestinians, reflecting rogue state viciousness, fully supported by Washington and key NATO partners.
His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”
Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.
It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs.