TEL AVIV – The newly formed “Golan Liberation Brigade,” an Iran-backed Shiite militia, heightens the threat posed by the Islamic Republic on Israel’s northern border, Minister of Intelligence and member of the Security Cabinet Israel Katz told the Jerusalem Post on Monday.
“The so called ‘Golan Liberation Brigade’ sharpens the threat posed by the presence of Iran and Hezbollah in Syria in general and on the Syrian side of the Golan Heights in particular,” he said.
“I have been saying for a long time that if Iran is allowed to base itself in Syria it will be a threat to Israel’s national security and a constant source of regional instability and tension and friction with the Sunni majority in Syria and with the Sunni countries in the region as well,” Katz added.
As Breitbart Jerusalem reported on Monday, the Iraqi militia, which goes by the name Harakat al Nujaba, is trained by the elite Iran Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and equipped with Russian-made tanks and Iranian rockets. The T-90 tanks were likely redirected from Russia through the Syrian army.
“The declaration regarding the formation of the Liberation of the Golan Brigade is not only a media campaign, but the real goal of the movement,” said the militia’s secretary-general Akram al-Kabi.
Its spokesman, Seyed Hashem Moussavi, said that the “Golan Liberation Brigade” is comprised of heavily trained special forces whose aim is to help the Syrian regime recapture the Golan Heights captured by Israel in the 1967 defensive war.
“We will not permit Arab and Islamic countries in the region to remain in the grasps of the occupiers,” Moussavi was quoted by Iran’s Tasnim news agency as saying.
Harakat al Nujaba’s leader al-Kabi accused Israel of attacking his brigade in 2015, a claim that remains speculative. Last year, however, Israel’s foreign and defense legislative committee revealed that the IDF had stopped several Iran-directed attempts to move forces into the Syrian Golan Heights.
Lt. Col. (res.) Mordechai Kedar said that developments regarding Hezbollah over the past few years mean Israel should stop viewing the northern border as two separate territories belonging to Syria and Lebanon respectively.
“Today there is no difference between the Lebanese front and the Syrian front because Hezbollah is in control of both. It is one continuous front controlled by Hezbollah from the Mediterranean Sea to Quientra to the Hermon valley. And that is how Israel should see it,” he told the Post.
If the IDF goes on the offensive and attacks the terror group, Kedar continued, it will do so in Lebanon.
“Israel has sent a very clear message to Hassan Nasrallah that in the next war Israel will destroy Lebanon in order to get Hezbollah on their knees.”
The Syrian war has fortified Hezbollah’s fighting capabilities as well as its weapons cache, including Soviet-made T-72 tanks, Russian Kornet anti-tank missiles, armored personnel carriers, rapid response motorcycles and KS-12A anti-aircraft weapons.
According to a senior IDF officer in the armored corps who asked to remain anonymous, the next conflict Israel faces with Hezbollah “will be a real war” against a powerful army and not just a guerrilla militia.