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Nasrallah - Hizbullah 'an unmovable force'
Photo: AFP
Photo: Avihu Shapira
Hirsch - Consulted Georgian army
Photo: Avihu Shapira
Photo: AFP
Barak -
Photo: AFP
Nasrallah: Georgia lost because of Israel
In speech marking two-year anniversary of Second Lebanon War, Hizbullah secretary-general mocks Israeli political, military leadership: 'Gal Hirsch was defeated in Lebanon, and now lost the war for Georgia'

In a speech marking the two-year anniversary of the Second Lebanon War, Hizbullah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah mocked Israel's political and military leadership.

 

"The entire front line of the army's brass stepped down because of the war. Gal Hirsch, who was defeated in Lebanon, went to Georgia and they too lost because of him," laughed Nasrallah.

 

Hirsch, a brigadier-general in the reserves, served as commander of the IDF's Galilee Division during the war and resigned in its wake. In recent years he consulted the Georgian army on the establishment of elite units and rearmament, and gave various courses in the fields of combat intelligence and fighting in built-up areas.

 

"Relying on Israeli experts and weapons, Georgia learned why the Israeli generals failed," proclaimed Nasrallah, "what happened in Georgia is a message to all those the Americans are seeking to entangle in dangerous adventures."

 

'Israel plotting to kill Hizbullah leaders'

Nasrallah accused Israel of seeking to assassinate Hizbullah commanders. "I tell the Zionists: We don't fear you. Say whatever you want and do whatever you want. We know that you are planning new assassinations of resistance leaders. But this will not make us retreat," he said.

 

Nasralla said that keeping the group's arsenal a "secret" is part of its battle against Israel, and made a point of not disclosing whether his guerrillas now have anti-aircraft missile systems.

 

"There has been an Israeli uproar about the reinforcement of Hizbullah's strength. There has been talk of sophisticated arms and an air defense system and threats if Hizbullah uses this kind of system," Nasrallah said.

 

"No one can expect me to stand up and say (whether) we possess new weapons or we don't," he added. "Keeping (weapons) secret is part of ... (Hizbullah's) strength. This is part of directing the battle of liberation and resistance against this enemy."

 

'Barak ran from Lebanon in 2000'

Nasrallah asserted that "the results of the Second Lebanon War are evident even today, in both the military and political fields in Israel." He said Israel is facing the worst leadership crisis in its history.

 

The Hizbullah chief also addressed recent comments by Defense Minister Ehud Barak regarding the importance of having an experienced leadership. "Ehud Barak admits that the reason for losing the war

was a lack of military experience. So who is there left in Israel with military experience if not all those failed generals? Those who stand against us today are the same failures who have already suffered blows from us before."

 

He also ridiculed Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi, quoting an Israel newspaper as saying Olmert "died two years ago in Lebanon and will be brought to political burial in two months."

 

"Is it Barak or Ashkenazi who failed against the resistance as head of the Northern Command? ."

 

"This September we will see the end of Israeli Prime Minister Olmert's rule. I remember Barak's speeches back when he was the enemy's prime minister in 2000. Need I remind him that he set the date of the withdrawal (from Lebanon) in July and we forced him to pull out in May?"

  

He opened his statements with words of condolence to the families of those killed in Tripoli and went on to welcome the establishment of a new government in Beirut this week, in which Hizbullah is a prominent partner. The Hizbullah chief also hailed the visit to Syria, which backs his movement, by Lebanon's President Michel Suleiman, calling it "a new stage" in relations between Beirut and Damascus.

 

The Associated Press contributed to this report

 

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