Netanyahu warns Iran, Hezbollah: ‘Don’t try the IDF’

PM gets military briefing in northern Israel following interception of terrorists on Lebanon border.

By Paul Shindman, World Israel News

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday warned Iran and its proxy terrorist group in Lebanon to back off from their threats to attack Israel, warning that Israel would take action to “thwart Iran’s military entrenchment in our region.”

The prime minister flew to northern Israel where he was briefed at the IDF’s Northern Command headquarters in Safed by IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kochavi and other senior IDF officials about the border incident Monday. Hezbollah terrorists were intercepted trying to cross the border from Lebanon, but retreated after the IDF opened fire. There were no reported injuries.

Netanyahu warned Hezbollah and its Iranian-sponsors, both of whom are operating in Syria and propping up dictator Bashar Al-Assad.

“I do not suggest that anybody try the IDF or the State of Israel. We are determined to defend ourselves,” Netanyahu said.

After the briefing, Netanyahu expressed his satisfaction with the performance of Israel’s military.

“I am impressed that the IDF is well prepared for every possible scenario. We will continue to take action to thwart Iran’s military entrenchment in our region. We will do whatever is necessary to defend ourselves, and I suggest that Hezbollah consider this simple fact. Israel is ready for any scenario,” he said.

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“Yesterday’s operation was important, it prevented intrusion into our territory. Everything that is happening right now is the result of an attempt to establish a military base in our region by Iran and its metastases in Lebanon,” the prime minister said, adding Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah “is serving this Iranian interest at Lebanon’s expense.”

Earlier Tuesday, Lebanese Prime Minister Hassan Diab tweeted about the border incident and accused Israel of violating Lebanese sovereignty, Channel 13 reported.

“Israel’s actions on the border are a dangerous military escalation – one must be careful in the coming days against loss of control and escalation,” Diab said, while boasting that “Israel’s army and leadership have become a joke of the world because of Hezbollah’s conduct.”

On Monday, both Netanyahu and Defense Minister Benny Gantz warned Lebanon and Syria not to allow any attacks against Israel from their sides of the border.

“Lebanon and Syria are both sovereign states and will bear the painful responsibility for any terrorist act that takes place on their territory,” Ganz added. “Anyone who dares to test the strength of the IDF will endanger himself and the country from which he operates. Any action against the State of Israel will lead to a powerful, sharp and painful response.”

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Last week Hezbollah threatened to attack Israel after one of its fighters was killed in an airstrike in Syria, for which it blamed Israel. Over the weekend the IDF sent heavy reinforcements to the northern border in anticipation, and on Monday a Hezbollah terror cell was spotted attempting to cross the border in the Har Dov area.

The IDF opened fire, driving the terrorists back into Lebanon, and the IDF ordered all residents in the area to head indoors. After about two hours, when the incident did not escalate, the Army gave the all-clear to return to normal.