“Iran will take military revenge by itself. It has strength and capability as well as power to defend and does not need any proxies,” the Hezbollah leader said.
By Paul Shindman, World Israel News
The leader of the Hezbollah terror group in Lebanon said Sunday that Iranian allies want to get the American military out of the region.
In a speech broadcast on Iran’s Press TV marking the anniversary of the U.S. assassination of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, Hassan Nasrallah said that Iran would carry out revenge attacks for the killing and didn’t need its proxies to do that work for Tehran.
“One of the main outcomes of the assassination of General Soleimani… is the calls made for the expulsion of U.S. forces from the region,” Nasrallah said in a speech on Iranian television broadcast live from Beirut.
The U.S. maintains numerous army, navy and air force bases in the region with tens of thousands of service personnel in Bahrain, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Syria and Turkey, as well as two U.S. Navy aircraft carrier groups deployed in international waters near Iran.
Nasrallah called Soleimani “a hero and an international icon of sacrifice, loyalty and defending the oppressed,” despite the slain Iranian military leader’s record of propping up Syrian dictator Bashar Al-Assad and supporting the civil war in Yemen. President Donald Trump, who authorized the airstrike that killed Soleimani and four members of a pro-Iranian militia, labeled Soleimani “the number one terrorist in the world.”
Nasrallah dismissed the assassination of Soleimani and of several senior Iranian nuclear scientists, reportedly by Israel.
“When you assassinate our leaders, we get more determined and strong-minded to assert our rights,” Nasrallah said, calling those who attacked “us” by killings and attacks “delusional.”
“The U.S. believed it could weaken Iran and the axis of resistance by assassinating Qassem Soleimani, but we are the ones who know how to turn threats into opportunities,” said Nasrallah, who for years has not appeared in public out of apparent fear of an Israeli strike against him.
“The resistance front will be always respecting and glorifying its martyrs. Iran will take military revenge by itself. It has strength and capability as well as power to defend and does not need any proxies. The friends of Iran will take their own decisions if they want to respond to this crime,” Nasrallah stressed.
Nasrallah also took the opportunity to blame America and NATO for creating the Islamic State terrorists, using the Iranian and Syrian argument that the Islamic terrorists who created mayhem in Iraq and Syria trying to create an Islamic caliphate were actually sent to fight against the Iranian allies.
The long-time leader of Hezbollah also used his speech to reiterate Iran’s “unconditional” support for Hezbollah and Palestinian groups, and did not appear to talk about Lebanese anger over Hezbollah control of the government there and its role in last year’s massive explosion in Beirut that left 200 people dead and thousands of homes damaged or destroyed.
“We have Allah (God) by our side. Whatever you do is doomed to failure, because those who depend on Allah will emerge victorious. Victory is not but from Allah,” Nasrallah said.