Silver Lining

Food for thought

Lebanon-Labbouneh: A tactical operation with strategic goals

by Nasser Charara – Al-Akhbar newspaper, source

The fresh “Israeli” breach in the region of Labbouneh, in terms of the size and category of the partaking units, raised many questions about its goals, which are still as yet concealed. But what is in no doubt, is that it was a tactical operation with strategic goals, considering the aforementioned givens.

Reports set by concerned parties indicate that the “Israeli” military force that partook in the Labbouneh operation included an entire squad, comprising nearly a hundred soldiers. This enemy force is affiliated with the “Sayeret Mitkal” unit, which directly receive commands from the Prime Minister and the Chief of Staff. Its real name is Unit 269 or the General Staff Reconnaissance Unit that is responsible of special operations, like the elimination of Palestinian leader Khalil Wazir, AKA Abu Jihad. Information state that this squad is executing special operations in Syria, especially in tracking the Syrian chemical arsenal and quality weapons’ transferring operations.

The structure of the squadron which participated in the overall logistic operation is known in the military science as a “reinforced squadron.”

Indeed, the speedy mobilization of a support unit as bombs exploded in Labbouneh was quite remarkable.
The operation raised question about whether it included clashes between the Resistance and the “Israeli” soldiers or not; in fact, information confirmed that one of the two parties has fired nearly one hundred cartridges. Information also said it was likely that the enemy soldiers were behind the gunfire to secure the retreat of the violators, noting that nobody announced any fire.

Usually, it is the Resistance men who open fire first in similar cases, if they have the intention to catch “Israeli” soldiers. But the facts of the Labbouneh ambush were not sufficient to tell whether that was the case or not, even though it certainly entailed the “Israelis” to conclude that the Resistance is absolutely capable to do so if it wants to develop its targets during similar breaches.

The Region’s Characteristics

It is estimated that the ambush site in Labbouneh does not comply with the tactics of the Resistance, in terms of geography, to kick off a confrontation with the “Israeli” army. The nature of the widely stretched and flat prefecture makes it more suitable for the tactics of the “Israeli” army in its conflict with Hizbullah. Therefore, the importance of the military achievement scored by the Resistance in Labbouneh is almost limited to its capacity to make violators’ movement unsafe and hence to deprive the enemy from the chance to take advantage of the region’s military characteristic that is in its favor. And this is what exactly happened during Labbouneh ambush.

Moreover, the importance of this region for the enemy lies within “Israel’s” keen concern with it during Blue Line demarcation talks with Lebanon. At the time, “Israeli’ negotiators insisted for long on affiliating Labbnouneh with its borders’ scope, due to the region’s strategic operational salience, as it overlooks Tyre and Bass refugees’ camp from the north as well as UNIFIL’s key activity field. According to the “Israeli” army, Labbouneh is a region of defense guard.

Nonetheless, the goal the “Israeli” squadron got out to achieve in Labbouneh is still unearthed. Is it for reconnaissance, or for security reasons to hit a certain target? But this discretion cannot hide a very important truth that dealt “Israel” a blow: the secrets of the operation were previously known by the Resistance. Setting the ambush per se confirms that the Resistance knew about the operation since it was planned, and thus, it certainly knows the real goal behind it.

This goal is going to remain a secret for a long time in the hands of the Resistance, which alone would decide to keep it or uncover it amid the silent security war with “Israel.”

The Ambush and the Developments

Those concerned with the headway of developments between “Israel” and Hizbullah have remarks on Labbouneh operation, relevant to its upshot in the region, especially in Syria:

First of all, military-wise, the violation of the Blue Line by special “Israeli” units comes within a scope of operations the open military war between “Israel” and Hizbullah requires, entailing both parties on keeping to stage it, for reasons that are related to spying, information collect, and detection of preparations. It is within this frame that the planting of “Israeli’ spying devices in specific regions in South Lebanon comes. Besides, the Resistance does not always have the opportunity to catch enemy soldiers as planting the devices. It may not be farfetched that the Resistance is practicing the same without being discovered by the “Israeli” enemy.

Second, the implication of an entire squadron in Labbouneh operation makes the reconnaissance goal at best slim and hints an intention to aim at a special target. The question in what this target is.

The Resistance has the answer is sure, and it prefers to remain silent on it for the time being. But there are some related clarifications, on top of which “Israel’s” wish to sense the nerve of the Resistance’s readiness at a timing where it is preoccupied in a war in Syria, which makes it unable to show utmost vigilance on two fronts.

This kind of questions leads to define Labbouneh operation as an “‘Israeli’ tactical movement with major strategic goals.” This explains the nature of the confrontation the Resistance has designed against the enemy; the Resistance has actually proven vigilance in Syria and shown that its performance remains unanticipated for the enemy. Here lies a message for those seeking to change the content of the dialogue table in terms of the national defense strategy, considering the change of circumstances around us and in the country.

Nothing has changed, that is the message of the ambush indeed.

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