Photo by upyernoz, 2005, via Flickr.

Americans have difficulty understanding why other cultures do not conform to the same freedoms we have in the Western World. Unfortunately, throughout the world people suffer from religious persecution, political oppression, and terrorism daily. One of the largest terrorist groups creating animosity in the Middle East, specifically in Israel is Hezbollah. 

Why Does Hezbollah Continue to Fight For Israel?

Hezbollah Believes They are Not a Terrorist Group

Most Western countries identify Hezbollah as a terrorist organization because of their anti-Israel message and guerrilla tactics against enemies of Lebanon. Hezbollah’s goal is to create an Islamic state both in Israel and Lebanon. The group disputes the claim that they are a terrorist organization because they operate solely as a voice of innocent Lebanese citizens.  Hezbollah’s concerns revolve around land occupation and preserving the Islamic State with any necessary means.

Religion and Politics are One Entity 

Hezbollah participates in the Lebanese parliament, healthcare system, and the general welfare of Lebanon. And despite the fact that it has used tactics such as suicide bombings, it has successfully acclimatized with the government. It does so through umbrella organizations that assert control in the Lebanese community. Hezbollah is a tree trunk, and from it the branches reach out vast distances. Its branches consist of legal organizations like the Social Unit, the Education Unit, and the Islamic Health Unit. These organizations are broken down further into more groups that provide specific resources. Details on this information can be found in the Congressional Research Service under, “Hezbollah: Background and Issues for Congress.”  

Hezbollah’s mission is to provide support for the Lebanese Shiite community and encourage attacks against Israel. Shiites see Hezbollah as a positive entity in Lebanese culture due to their assistance in the Shiite community. With Hezbollah’s steady increase in recruitment rates, this guerrilla war may continue for decades. 

They Have Support

In 2006, The United Nations released the Security Council Resolution 1701, which supported the disarming of Hezbollah. Siding with the UN, the United States disputes Hezbollah’s tactics, but Syria and Iran do not support the resolution. This is likely due to the countries’ suspected support for the group; the United Nations believes they are still supplying Hezbollah with weapons and artillery, even though Syria has publicly denied supplying it. This artillery, now coming from all over the Middle East, including Iran, is posing a huge threat to Israel. 

Due to the complex dynamics of Hezbollah it will be impossible to eradicate such groups with military force without creating a power vacuum or generating more hostility and chaos between countries.

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One response to “The Perpetual War: Understanding Hezbollah’s Fight for Israel”

  1. I am a history major and have taken military history classes and also middle eastern history classes. I agree that people in the United States will never understand the thinking of other countries, due to the privileges we have here. I am a big supporter of the United Nations, and I think it is a great alliance, but I do not believe the United States should be getting into the relationship between Hezbollah and Israel. The Middle East is a terrible place to fight a war. If you look back at American History, we have never done well in wars in the Middle East. We can not legally fight the way they fight and will never understand their mind set of suicide missions. I agree we will never be able to get rid of all the radical groups in the Middle East, this is why we should stay out of it and hope they can figure it out themselves. We are already wasting too much money, time, and lives in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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