Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of the Lebanese Shia Islamist group Hezbollah, is due to address his followers following Friday’s prayers.
The address is due to begin at 3pm in Lebanon.
This address will be the Muslim cleric’s first public address since the Israel-Hamas war broke out on Oct. 7.
His speech is expected to indicate the group’s next move.
Although Hezbollah and Israel’s intense attacks have been contained to the Lebanese and Israeli border so far, fears are rising that what Nasrallah states could create a new front in the conflict and dangerously escalate the war.
Every time Hezbollah has raised the stakes on the border, Israel has retaliated, but both sides seem to be holding back some..
All of this could flip on a dime because Israel is advancing its ground invasion further inside Gaza. At this point, the IDF has surrounded Gaza City.
Overnight, Israel continued bombing Gaza.
The Hamas-run Ministry of Health is claiming that over 9,000 have been killed inside Gaza. Saying, the majority of them are children.
Hamas tortured and murdered over a thousand defenseless Israeli citizens weeks ago.
Many do not believe the Israeli government's explanation of how this was allowed to happen.
Some Hamas leaders have repeatedly urged its allies to join the conflict.
Hezbollah is the largest political and military force in Lebanon.
Whatever Nasrallah’s message is, it will reverberate on all sides of the conflict.
The cleric’s address has been promoted as a “significant moment” for the last five days and will be broadcasted on public screens. Hezbollah has organized its viewing across Lebanon.
Earlier this week, the group released dramatic short videos featuring Nasrallah to gin up the promotion and push his major announcement.
Hezbollah and Israel were engaged in a month-long war back in 2006.
Like Hamas, one of Hezbollah’s goals is to destroy Israel.
From Israel’s perspective, Hezbollah is a more formidable enemy than Hamas. Hezbollah’s vast arsenal of weapons includes precision-guided missiles that have the capacity to reach deep into Israel and access to over 100,000 battle-experienced fighters.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has stated that if Hezbollah escalates the conflict, Israel’s response will be an “unimaginable" magnitude.
The Lebanese have no desire for another war between Hezbollah and Israel. The country barely has a functional government and the economy is in tatters. Lebanon has not fully recovered from their economic crisis.
From the start of this Israel-Hamas conflict, the Biden administration publicly and privately has warned Iran, “Don’t…Don’t…Don’t..” escalate the situation.
But, the question is, have Biden’s warnings put the brakes on any escalation?
Iran supports the “Axis of Resistance,” an alliance consisting of Hezbollah and militias in Iraq, Syria, Yemen’s Houthis, and Hamas.
Israel's "crimes had crossed the red lines, which may force everyone to take action,” remarked Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi.
Washington, he added, "asks us to not do anything, but they keep giving widespread support to Israel.”
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken just returned to Israel Friday morning for the third time in the region since this recent conflict began almost a month ago.
Just hours before Nasrallah address, Blinken re-emphasized the need for humanitarian aid to be delivered inside Gaza in his meetings with Benjamin Netanyahu and other Israeli leaders.
Blinken also told the press that Israel has the “obligation” to defend itself after the Oct. 7 Hamas attacks so that they “never happen again.”
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