Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Aerospace Force Brigadier General Amir Ali Hajizadeh told Lebanese Al-Manar channel that Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in Gaza will serve as the first line of defense if Israel attacks Iran. He added that Iran will “flatten” Tel Aviv and Haifa if Israel launches an attack against the Islamic Republic.
He made the comments on the first anniversary of the US assassination of former Quds Force chief Qassem Soleimani.
His comments outraged several Lebanese leaders who blasted president Michel Aoun for his response to the the Iranian general
“Where is the General Michel Aoun whom I know regarding freedom, sovereignty and independence?” ex-minister Richard Kouyoumjian, head of the Lebanese Forces foreign relations dept., tweeted.
“Mr. President, your tenure has turned into another Iranian model, like al-Houthi in Yemen, al-Maliki in Iraq and Bashar in Syria. Do you know that the least that is being said today is that Lebanon has turned into a failed, violated, isolated and bankrupt state where unemployment, poverty, disease and misery are prevalent?” Kouyoumjian added.
Ex-MP Fadi Karam, the secretary of the LF-led Strong Republic bloc, meanwhile told Aoun in a tweet that his political movement is “still labeling as resistance… the mini-state that is loyal to the Iranian project.”
“This means that you have definitely renounced Lebanese sovereignty, so it would be more honorable for you to refrain from fictional statements,” Karam added.
“There should not be resistance weapons outside of the army’s arsenal. We totally understand that you are not free and that you have exchanged keenness on sovereignty for a few posts,” the LF official went on to say.
Aoun responded earlier by stressing that Lebanon has sovereignty over its border and territory,
“The Lebanese have no partner in preserving their country’s independence, its sovereignty over its border and territory, and the freedom of its decision,” Aoun said in a tweet.
Hezbollah ally defends Iran’s General
But Hezbollah’s ally Sheikh Ahmed Qabalan defended the statement by the Iranian general stressing Sunday that Lebanon can have no sovereignty without the Iranian missiles.
“The behavior of some Lebanese is very strange. As this camp bows to the U.S. ambassador and calls on (French President Emmanuel) Macron to reinstate the mandate over Lebanon…, it blusters about defending sovereignty, which it turned into it blusters about defending sovereignty, which it turned into humiliation, murder and militia fiefdoms during the era of the Israeli occupation,” Qabalan said.
“There can be no sovereignty without Qasem Soleimani’s missiles and you are responsible for robbing the country, leading it into bankruptcy and bargaining over its regional files, not the missiles of Qasem Soleimani who contributed to liberation and backed the resistance that recovered the country,” Qabalan went on to say.
“All the missile capabilities that Gaza and Lebanon possess were achieved through Iran’s support. They are the frontline for the confrontation,” Hajizadeh said in remarks to al-Manar TV.
Resigned MP, Marwan Hamadeh commented on the Iranian statement by saying that the time has come for a confrontation with Hezbollah, pointing out that Lebanon should not be left hostage by Iran. He asked, “If the Secretary-General of Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah, is a soldier in Wilayat al-Faqih, is he really an arm to defend Iran and the” mullahs’ republic “at the expense of Lebanon? Hamadeh pointed out in a radio interview, “What is required is for the President of the Republic, Michel Aoun, to pose an existential question: Will there be anything left of Lebanon?”
Phalangist Party leader , Sami Gemayel, posted on social media the statement of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard “drawing those who still under the illusion that our country is sovereign and independent.”
“Lebanon and the Lebanese are hostages in the hand of Iran through Hezbollah and they use us as human shields in their battle that has nothing to do with Lebanon,” he said , noting that “the presidency, the government and the parliament are false witnesses and are providing the cover for giving up Lebanon ,” stressing that “we will remain in the confrontation to regain our country.” And the dignity and future of our people. “
Former Lebanese Justice minister and general director of the Lebanese Internal Security Forces Ashraf Rifi considers that “the days of Hezbollah’s weapons are numbered, and Hezbollah’s weapons are an illusion accusing the party destroying , robbing and and plundering the state.”
He stressed that “Hezbollah’s arms are its weak point.” adding : ” The Iranian role has ended, and Hezbollah bears responsibility for the blood of innocent people in Iraq, Syria and Yemen, as well as Iran,” noting that “Tripoli is patriotic and more patriotic than the Secretary-General of Hezbollah.” He added “Hezbollah and Iran have not disbanded any Israeli cell in Lebanon”
According to analysts Hezbollah has turned Lebanon into a colony of Iran . It controls all it branches of government and its borders . Ever since Israel withdrew from Lebanon , Hezbollah has used its arms to increase Iran’s influence in Lebanon . For the past 15 years no government could be formed in Lebanon , or a president elected without a green light from Iran .