The 5 year involvement in the Syrian war is only one mark in this complicated context. Before that Hezbollah’s top security leader Imad Mughniyah was assassinated in Damascus.
Between the two accidents Hezbollah lost as many fighters in Syria as the numbers that were killed in Lebanon. Therefore, the 5 yearlong involvement in Syria looks not only longer than Hezbollah’s three decades in Lebanon but even more reflecting of Hezbollah’s image and role.
The Syrian mission of Hezbollah didn’t only drain the party’s power there but it also exhausted it inside Lebanon since the party has been mobilizing all it potentials and powers into it. The party is joining governments according to this mission and making even concessions in order to cover this war.
We can also say that the 2006 war that was launched to free Samir Kuntar was also wasted in Syria after the killing of Kuntar there. This wasting is parallel to a much bigger one which the party committed while pretending to protect the shrines there.
The cost of this mission has extended to include not only Hezbollah’s fighters and their families but has turned Lebanon into an open space for sectarian- based conflicts. The explosion has moved from Syria to Lebanon and statics show how much exposed Lebanon has become after Hezbollah’s intervention in Syria.
However, the Syrian mission of Hezbollah hasn’t started since the outbreak of the revolution in Syria. The major security marks in the party’s Syrian and Lebanese biography have long been connected to the party’s position in a regional equation.
Mughniyah was killed in Syria in 2008 that was long before the party’s military involvement in Syria and in 2006 war Syria was the party’s back fort. Those early facts should have been considered while explaining Hezbollah’s quick involvement in Syria. In other words this means that Hezbollah is being in its normal position while fighting in Syria and that’s Hezbollah’s loss, in case Assad regime fell, would be as much in importance as the regime’s own loss.
This position of Hezbollah in the Syrian context is not a new one since it has always been there but the new developments have shown that the cost of its Syrian mission is far much worse than its Lebanese one.
However, there is nothing harder for Hezbollah than its current position in the Syrian war. The enemy is not an enemy despite the fierce conflict and the actual sequence of fighting which is consuming the first story that justifies the conflict itself.
What is happening now is that Russian warplanes are paving the way for the party in its war in Syria while allowing Israeli warplanes meanwhile to target the party’s most influential leaders.
What a war is this! What a tragedy!
Hazem al-Amin in Al-Hayat
Translated by Orient Net English