Israel, US afraid to attack Iran, Hezbollah leader says

A strike on Iran would in any case be “useless” and even accelerate the nuclear program’s growth, said Nasrallah.

By Batya Jerenberg, World Israel News

Neither Israel nor the U.S. would attack Iran even if it does not stop its nuclear development, Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah told Iranian state television in a wide-ranging interview Tuesday.

“Iran is a strong and sovereign country and the United States fears war with it,” said the leader of the Islamic Republic’s strongest terror proxy, who plays a leading role in Lebanon’s government.

“Talk about war is to intimidate and pressure Iran,” he said. “The United States has no ability to stop Iran’s peaceful nuclear program. A military strike could even accelerate the growth of Iran’s nuclear program.”

Rejecting the West’s contention that Iran is seeking to build a nuclear weapon, Nasrallah dismissed the Jewish state’s warning that it will respond on its own, if necessary, to the Iranian threat.

“If Israel launches a military attack on Iran, Iran’s response will be very harsh, and the Israelis will be afraid of Iran’s response,” Nasrallah stated.

“I tend to assume that what the Israelis say about Iran is intimidation, and most of the security and military levels contradict the implementation of a military strike on Iran because such a strike is useless,” he added.

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Nasrallah told the Al-Alam network that “the Zionist regime’s” threats against his terror organization are also empty.

It would need “a complete war” to destroy Hezbollah’s vast array of missiles, as they are spread throughout Lebanon and Israel does not even know how many rockets the organization has, he claimed.

He also boasted that “the missile capability of the resistance does not allow the Zionist regime to take action against Lebanon…air defense of the resistance has had good results.”

Israel has concentrated on striking Iranian-backed military targets in Syria rather than Lebanon over the last several years in what is known in the government as “the war between the wars,” seeing it as the greater immediate danger.

Nasrallah admitted that some of the strikes have hit Hezbollah sites in Syria, whose state media often states that its forces downed Israeli missiles during the air raids.

In terms of Beirut’s air defense, however, the IAF has reportedly fired at sites in Syria from Lebanese air space over this period, with no repercussions from Lebanese or Hezbollah-directed anti-aircraft fire.

Nasrallah denied that Lebanon or Hezbollah was under Iran’s control.

“Hezbollah, from head to toe, is Lebanese, and it is from the Lebanese,” he said.

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“The Iranian embassy or any Iranian party does not interfere in the slightest in the affairs of Lebanon and its elections.”