Lebanese border
Lebanese border david Cohen/Flash90

The most serious military threat the State of Israel faces in 2021 comes from the State of Lebanon to the north, a situation which is likely to continue in the coming years, Israel Hayom reported Sunday morning.

According to the report, there is currently mutual deterrence between Israel and the Hezbollah terrorist organization, but security officials in Israel estimate that the potential for deterioration between the parties is only increasing, as a result of tactical events, which could lead to an escalation and even all-out war.

Lebanon is currently in the midst of one of the most serious crises it has ever seen - an economic, political, governmental, ethnic, social and health crisis. Hezbollah, a member of the Lebanese government, operates in practice as an independent army that does not take responsibility for what is happening in the country, maintains its own fighting forces and weapons and continues to receive Iranian funding. Although the crisis does not completely spare the terrorist organization, despite its economic difficulties and the internal criticism of it, Hezbollah continues to preserve and build its military force.

The prevailing opinion in the Israeli defense establishment is that the crisis in Lebanon may be a factor that will restrain Hezbollah from using force, but past experience shows that sometimes internal crisis can provoke confrontation, to create a sense of solidarity and direct national ire at an external enemy.

According to the assessment, the next conflict with Hezbollah will not be similar to the Second Lebanon War in 2006, as Hezbollah has grown far more powerful in the years since.

Hezbollah secretary general Hassan Nasrallah has in recent years created a terminology of equation, whose orderly logic is based on the proverb "blood for blood" and in which he threatened to respond to any Israeli attack on Lebanese territory. To prove his seriousness, in July 2020 Nasrallah threatened to take revenge after a Hezbollah operative was killed in an attack attributed to Israel in the Damascus area. Despite his boasts, Hezbollah was unable to carry out an attack.

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