Hezbollah: Tel Aviv would be 1st target

Oct. 21, 2011 at 9:30 PM

BEIRUT, Lebanon, Oct. 21 (UPI) -- The leader of Hezbollah said Friday if Israel starts a war with Lebanon, Tel Aviv would be the militant group's first target, a Lebanese newspaper reported.

Al-Akhbar said Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah's warning came during a meeting with high-ranking officials in the party, The Daily Star of Lebanon reported.

"Any war that Israel decides to initiate in the future will start in Tel Aviv, not in the occupied northern areas," Nasrallah was quoted as saying. "They (Israelis) will launch a war without having any of the red lines that they have drawn for themselves in previous wars."

He said "if Israel decides to launch a war against Lebanon … we will crush" the Israeli army.

Al-Akhbar reported Nasrallah admitted during a meeting of Hezbollah leaders that the organization had been hurt by information passed to the CIA and the Israeli intelligence agency Mossad, The Jerusalem Post said.

Hezbollah had detained four of its own members a month ago on charges of spying for Israel and a fifth fled, the London-based daily Asharq Alawsat reported, the Post said.

Asharq Alawsat quoted Lebanese sources as saying a fifth operative, suspected of collaborating with Israel, had disappeared from his southern Beirut home last week. He is reported to have testified before a United Nations tribunal about the 2005 assassination of former Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri.

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