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Both Israel and Hezbollah are aware that any escalation of the war between them would be highly costly for both sides, and could potentially set the entire region ablaze. Indeed, the Islamic Republic of Iran will surely not stand idly by in the face of a serious threat to its main ally in the Arab world and the region, Hezbollah.

According to relevant sources, Israeli authorities firmly believe that initiating a full-scale conflict with Hezbollah would result in a significant regional escalation. Every scenario they have devised has led them to this conclusion, whether it’s an attack on Hezbollah resulting in massive destruction of Lebanon, an offensive against Hezbollah on Syrian territory, or a direct strike against Iran.

Americans have conveyed to Israeli authorities through diplomatic channels the danger of any large-scale military operation or broad military attack against Hezbollah. The escalation of events along the Israeli-Lebanese border has heightened American concerns, as actions and reactions seem to be spiraling out of control. Consequently, the decision was made to dispatch Amos Hochstein, a senior advisor to President Joe Biden, to Israel as a first step.

The American envoy is expected to urge Israelis to exercise restraint, promising in return additional assistance and technological cooperation to counter Hezbollah’s missiles and drones.

However, Hochstein will not present any new proposals regarding the situation along the Israeli-Lebanese border. The ceasefire issue remains unresolved as it is tied to the one in Gaza, which is unlikely to be resolved in the near future despite efforts from American and international parties. This issue will not stop the American envoy from engaging in discussions with Israelis about suggested options to address the border situation with Lebanon, including both diplomatic and military solutions.

Americans believe that a long-term solution in southern Lebanon is still possible through negotiation, albeit delayed. Israelis share this view, but there is concern that the time needed for a Gaza ceasefire may be extended, potentially escalating the risk of a widespread conflict – one that could surpass all efforts at de-escalation if linked to a significant military event.

According to American sources, discussions regarding the Israeli-Lebanese border dossier are currently limited to Israelis authorities. Engaging with official Lebanese authorities is deemed ineffective due to their lack of decision-making power. Additionally, direct communication with Hezbollah is not possible and is unlikely to yield results at this time. Finally, indirect communication with Iran has also shown that the Islamic Republic cannot be relied upon to rein in Hezbollah.


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