Israel Attacks Lebanon's Bekaa Valley For First Time Of War, 100km From Border

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by Tyler Durden
Tuesday, Feb 27, 2024 - 03:40 AM

Israel on Monday unleashed a wave of airstrikes on a location in eastern Lebanon which had yet to be targeted in the war. Several attacks were conducted on the outskirts of Baalbek in the Bekaa Valley. This area hasn't been struck by Israeli fire since the 2006 war.

The Bekaa Valley has long been considered a Hezbollah stronghold and Israel choosing to attack it signals a definite expanse and escalation of the ongoing conflict far beyond the south Lebanon border region, given it lies a full 100km from said border. The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) confirmed in a statement that it struck "Hezbollah terror targets deep inside Lebanon."

Via Al Jazeera

Targets hit reportedly included a convoy of trucks and sites connected to Hezbollah's areal defense systems. At least two people were killed in the attacks, Reuters reports. The two had been working in a food warehouse run by Hezbollah.

Earlier in the day an Israeli drone was downed by Hezbollah over Lebanon. Israel's military said the fresh Bekaa operation was in response to the earlier launch of a surface-to-air missile by the Iran-backed paramilitary group.

Social media videos reportedly from one of the strike locations in Bekaa Valley shows a damaged and burned truck and SUV amid an expanse of rubble strewn across a roadway. 

Hezbollah has unleashed large waves of missiles on northern Israel throughout the day, with one missile having fallen near a synagogue close to Nazareth.

Specifically Hezbollah sources said that in response to Israel's Bekaa attack its militants fired at least 60 rockets at an Israeli army headquarters in Golan Heights.

Hezbollah politician Hassan Fadlallah announced of the Israeli strikes reaching far into Lebanese territory, even near the Syrian border that "Its aggression on Baalbek or any other areas will not remain without response."

Israeli bystanders filmed the following dramatic video as rockets rained down...

On Sunday, Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant warned that even if a deal with Hamas is achieved in the Gaza Strip, this doesn't mean fighting with Hezbollah will stop:

"If a temporary pause is reached in Gaza, we will increase the fire in the north separately, and will continue until the full withdrawal of Hezbollah [from the border] and the return of Israeli citizens to their homes," he said.

Israeli Golan base targeted by massive missile barrage, sending personnel scrambling for bomb shelters...

As of last week (Feb.18), Israel had begun to strike deeper into Lebanon, expanding its strikes far beyond the border region in the south. Large airstrikes rocked a town near Sidon, which lies 60km from the border.

The Lebanese government fears the war might at any moment encompass the whole country, as it did in 2006 when Beirut International airport was bombed. Israel has demanded that the government reign in Hezbollah, but it reality it doesn't have the power or military capability to do so, as the Lebanese Army is ill-equipped.