Michel Aoun, who was chosen as president of Lebanon and threatened Israel in his inauguration speech last year, said thatif there was another war between Israel and Lebanon, Israel would not win such a war, The Times of Israel reported Thursday.
All the Lebanese are prepared to fight against Israel, Aoun told a Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Rai. Yes, we are a small country, but we have reestablished our national unity, and part of that is the united opposition to anyone who attacks our country.
Aoun was chosen by Lebanons parliament as president in October last year,filling the office after more than two years of obstruction by Hezbollah. Hezbollah has subsequently cemented its hold on the institutions of Lebanons government by expanding the cabinet and taking control of some of the most important ministries.
In August the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) fought alongside Hezbollah against ISIS in northeastern Lebanon. A Washington Post reporter noted that in areas under Hezbollahs control nowhere was there any evidence of the Lebanese state.
Hezbollah has kept its weapons and operates in southern Lebanon in violation of United States Security Council resolution 1701, which ended the 2006 war betweenIsrael and Hezbollah, and stipulated that the LAF should be the only armed force in Lebanon and should have control of southern Lebanon.
Earlier in the week, Nabih Berri protested to the United Nations that Israel was building a wall on Lebanons southern border.
The IDF has adapted its defense doctrine to address threats from Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah, who has statedthat Hezbollah sought to enter into Galilee and go even beyond the Galilee.
Because of Hezbollahs control over Lebanon, and its tactic of using human shields, the next war between Israel, Hezbollah and Lebanon couldlead to mass civilian casualties.
Reportsemerged in 2013that Hezbollah was offering reduced-price housing to Shiite families who allow the terrorist group to store rocket launchers in their homes.An Israeli defense officialtoldThe New York Timesin May 2015that the buildup of Hezbollahs terror infrastructure in southern Lebanese villages meant that civilians are living in a military compound and that their lives were at risk. A few days later, a newspaper linked to Hezbollahbolsteredthe Israeli assessment.