Ten years on from the Second Lebanon War, Netanyahu vows that Hezbollah will face an ‘iron fist’ if they try to attack Israel again.
Netanyahu addressed the crowd at a memorial service marking ten years since the Second Lebanon War on Mount Herzl in Jerusalem on Tuesday, saying, “we are preparing ourselves for any eventuality. If we are forced to respond to aggression, the response will be powerful.”
The Second Lebanon War was started when Hezbollah kidnapped Israeli soldiers who were patrolling the Lebanon/Israel border, and killed others in a series of attacks. Israel responded and a war broke out that left around 1,200 Lebanese, many of whom were Hezbollah fighters, and 160 Israelis dead.
Israel does not start or want these wars, but is clear to its enemies that peace is up to them, with Netanyahu stating, “if our peace is kept, those who stand against us all also enjoy peace”.
“Anyone who thinks that they will find cobwebs here will get an iron fist. Our fighters’ willingness to risk their lives is the cornerstone of our security,” Netanyahu proclaimed.
“Sometimes we have no choice but to send out our soldiers in order to protect our citizens. Before we embark on any mission, we examine it very closely and diligently, with the utmost responsibility and concern,” he added.
Addressing the families who lost loved ones in the conflict, Netanyahu said, “I know the depth of your never-ending pain. Only you know if and how much you have succeeded in salvaging the ruins of your lives. My heart is with you, and with those struggling to heal from the wounds of the war.”
During the 2006 war, Hezbollah launched thousands of rockets into Israel. Today, Israeli defence experts say that Hezbollah’s improved missile arsenal can strike virtually anywhere in the country. They add, however, that Israel’s strong response during the Second Lebanon War has acted as a powerful deterrent to Hezbollah and has given ten years of calm between Lebanon and Israel.