Mon Jan 13, 2020, 08:20 PM

Christians mustn't forget Israel amid conflict with Iran

by Tim Head
| January 13, 2020 01:35 PM

Last week, President Trump said the United States is “ready to embrace peace” with Iran after missile strikes on military bases in Iraq. His decision not to respond with military force may end up saving American lives, but it’s Israel that could end up suffering the most. And with new U.S. sanctions against Iran, Christians can’t overlook the importance of U.S. support of Israel in the fragile upcoming months.

Geographically, it’s far easier for Iran to retaliate against Israel than it is to strike the U.S. itself. And Iran has a history of using terrorist proxies to commit violence throughout the Middle East. While Iran may have a great deal to lose from a conventional war with the U.S., it has a lot less to lose by continuing its pattern of proxy attacks.

The Shiite Lebanese militant group Hezbollah, which receives $700 million a year in funds from Iran, is considered by many to be “the most powerful Iranian proxy in the Middle East.” Hezbollah will almost certainly attack Israel if the situation escalates. Iran, not surprisingly, has threatened attacks in Israel and Dubai. In 2016, Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps labeled an Iranian missile with “Israel must be wiped off the earth” in Hebrew. Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has frequently called Israel a “cancerous tumor” that should be destroyed.

Hezbollah is a sophisticated network. It provides education, healthcare, and other services to its Lebanese Shiite constituents. It has already managed to build tunnels up to 22 stories deep from Lebanon to Israel. Between December 2018 and January 2019 alone, Israel located six such tunnels. Some were even outfitted with electricity, communications, and lighting.



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