An Israeli military expert says the likelihood is growing that Israel will need to launch more multi-front operations.
Israel Air Force Headquarters Chief Brigadier General Hagai Topolansky told a national security conference Tuesday the Jewish State is likely to extend its operations beyond its borders as well.
“In the 80s and 90s we operated to deal with situations in places as far away as Iraq,” Topolansky told the audience at the Fisher Institute in Herzliya.
“In the past decade, we went as far away as Iran,” he added. “I hope [our operations] won’t have to be extended any farther [than that].”
Earlier this month, the IDF issued call up orders for six battalions to guard the Egyptian and Syrian borders, with authorization for more if needed.
The orders were approved by the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee as part of a request to call up as many as 22 battalions. A military spokesperson said the call up came following intelligence assessments calling for increased deployment of more troops.
Israeli defense personnel are also closely watching Lebanon as loyalists to the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad clash with anti-government factions in Lebanese territory.
The growing Syrian civil war has begun to carry over into neighboring Lebanon.
Pro- and anti-Syrian factions within the Lebanese population have been clashing in the streets of Tripoli.
Violence also began this week to spill over into the capital of Beirut for the first time as well, giving rise to speculation the guns might eventually be pointed at Israel. Thousands of refugees and Syrian Army deserters have poured into Lebanon, which is dominated by the Hizbullah terrorist organization and other pro-Syrian factions.
If Assad falls, as Israeli officials believe he will, the IDF may face Al Qaeda-linked fighters at the border near the Golan Heights. If the Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorist organizations launch an attack on southern Israel, a second front will open — as happened during the 2006 Second Lebanon War. Were the Palestinian Authority’s ruling Fatah faction in Ramallah to launch a simultaneous attack in Judea, Samaria and Jerusalem, a third front would be added, and with that, a multi-front war against Israel could easily be sparked, possibly even with additional Arab nations joining in.
By Chana Ya’ar