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Hezbollah: Supporting Hamas in Israel Conflict – A Simple Guide to Understand without Jargon.

Hezbollah: Understanding the Lebanese Group’s Origins and Influence

Origins of Hezbollah

Hezbollah, founded in 1982 during Lebanon’s civil war, emerged as part of Iran’s effort to export its Islamic Revolution and fight against Israeli forces. Recruiting Lebanese Shi’ite Muslims, this group shares Tehran’s ideology and has evolved from a shadowy faction to a heavily armed force with significant influence over the Lebanese state. While some countries deem Hezbollah a terrorist organization, it remains a powerful entity in the region.

Hezbollah’s Military Power

Unlike other groups that disarmed after Lebanon’s civil war, Hezbollah retained its weapons to combat Israeli forces occupying the predominantly Shi’ite south of the country. Following years of guerrilla warfare, Israel withdrew in 2000, solidifying Hezbollah’s military reputation. In 2006, during a five-week war with Israel, Hezbollah demonstrated its military might by firing thousands of rockets into Israel. With support from Iran, Hezbollah has acquired advanced weaponry, including precision rockets and drones, making it a formidable force in the region.

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Hezbollah’s Role in the Israel-Hamas Conflict

Hezbollah has deep ties to Hamas, which controls Gaza, and Islamic Jihad, another Palestinian faction backed by Iran. Recent hostilities have seen Hezbollah engaging in cross-border fire with Israel, while Hamas and Islamic Jihad have launched attacks from Lebanon. Despite the escalating conflict, Israel’s defense minister expressed a desire to avoid war, urging Hezbollah to exercise restraint. However, the situation remains tense as Hezbollah’s involvement in the conflict threatens to expand the scope of the conflict between Israel and Hamas.

Regional Influence of Hezbollah

Hezbollah has been a source of inspiration and support for other Iranian-backed groups across the Middle East. It has trained armed groups in Iraq and has been accused of supporting the Iran-allied Houthis in Yemen, although Hezbollah denies these allegations. Its influence is underpinned by its sophisticated arsenal and the support of many Lebanese Shi’ites who view the group as a defender against Israel. While critics claim Hezbollah undermines the Lebanese state, the group continues to hold political power, with ministers in government and lawmakers in parliament.

Hezbollah’s Controversial Past

Hezbollah has faced accusations of involvement in attacks on Western targets. It has been linked to suicide bombings on Western embassies and the kidnapping of Westerners during the 1980s. The United States holds Hezbollah responsible for the bombing of the U.S. Marine headquarters in Beirut in 1983, which killed 241 servicemen, as well as other attacks. However, Hezbollah’s leader has denied direct responsibility for these actions, attributing them to small groups not affiliated with the organization.

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Hezbollah’s origins lie in the tumultuous backdrop of Lebanon’s civil war, and it has since evolved into a powerful political and military force with regional influence. While some view the group as a defender against Israel, others accuse it of destabilizing the Lebanese state and engaging in acts of terrorism. As the conflict between Israel and Hamas continues, Hezbollah’s involvement adds a new dimension to the already volatile situation.

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