Jerusalem – A new report released last week alleges that Hezbollah is operating in several Iraqi provinces, and in cooperation with the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, has been training Iranian-financed Shiite militias to attack British and U.S. forces.
Authored by Israeli analyst Jonathan Dahoah Halevi for the Institute for Contemporary Affairs, the report said Hezbollah is now a major force to contend with in Iraq.
“Hezbollah’s deep involvement in terror throughout Iraq demonstrates that the organization does not view itself purely as a Lebanese factor with national and local objectives, but as an arm of Iran in spreading the Shiite Islamic revolution throughout the Middle East and in the long term throughout the entire world,”said the report.
Entitled “Hezbollah’s Role in Attacks Against U.S. and British Forces in Iraq,” the report continued, “Hezbollah’s strategic ties with Iran’s Revolutionary Guards for the purpose of operations in Iraq once again illustrate how Iran, in general, and its Revolutionary Guards, in particular, directly promote international terrorism globally.”
The report said Britain and the United States have deemed Hezbollah one of the greatest threats in Iraq. The two countries have determined that Hezbollah was involved in attacks on British and U.S. troops in at least four Iraqi provinces. In April, Hezbollah, amid intensified Iraqi security operations, moved militia training to Iran.
“The U.S. and Britain have increasingly singled out Hezbollah as one of the most serious threats to coalition forces in Iraq,” said the report.
Citing Hezbollah’s Web site, the report said the Lebanese-based militia has been operating several brigades in Baghdad and Basra. Hezbollah was also said to maintain a presence in such Gulf Cooperation Council states as Bahrain, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia.
“Lebanese Hezbollah members are particularly useful to Iran for training Iraqis because both groups speak Arabic while the Iranians speak Farsi,” the report said. “Lebanese Hezbollah may also have additional credibility with Iraqi Shiites because of what is viewed as their success.”
Hezbollah was said to have trained Iraqi Shiite operatives in the Iranian cities of Ahwaz, Mashad, Qom and Tehran. Citing the London-based A-Sharq Al Awsat, the study said the courses included intelligence gathering, light weapons, combat skills, sabotage and anti-tank missiles, including the RPG-29 launcher.
“Hezbollah training was intended to ready Iraqi Shiite operatives for assassination and terror attacks in Iraq,” the report said.
David Bedein can be reached at email@example.com. His Web site is www.IsraelBehindTheNews.com.
©The Bulletin 2008