A man kissing a poster of Hizbullah leader Hassan Nasrallah
Photo: AP
Photo: Reuters
Hizbullah terrorists in south Lebanon
Photo: Reuters

Hizbullah: Patience is our virtue

Guardian newspaper reporter accompanies four Hizbullah gunmen hiding in Tyre apartment; terrorists say Katyusha fire aimed at Israeli commando and Golani soldiers

A reporter with the Guardian newspaper visited Hizbullah areas in Tyre in south Lebanon. Hizbullah, according to a Guardian report published Saturday, has been preparing for the current fighting with Israel for years with Iran's assistance.


The group has called up reserve men a month ago and gunmen are waiting for IDF soldiers in secret hideouts.


The report paints a picture of an impenetrable organization whose members are recruited a young age and do nothing but follow strict orders.


Hizbullah supporter carries group's flag, Nasrallah poster (Photo: AP)


The group has already set itself a target once the fighting with Israel ends: Lebanese politicians critical of the group.


Ghaith Abdul-Ahad describes a hideout full of arms and books where he met Shiite cleric Sayed Ali and three other Hizbullah terrorists.


The four are in a room waiting for IDF soldiers.


"Patience is our main virtue, we can wait for days, weeks, months before we attack. The Israelis are always impatient in battle and in strategy," Sayed Ali, who claims to be a descendant of the prophet, told the Guardian reporter. "I know them very well."


Ali fought with Hizbullah for 17 years and was arrested and jailed by Israel during its 1982 invasion of Lebanon.


Over the last five years he has been studying theology in Tehran.


Hizbullah asked him to return home a month ago part of their reserve call-up campaign.


Pointing to banana plantations over the hills Ali told the Guardian reporter: "I have fought for years in these groves. We used to sit and wait for them to make a move and then we would hit. They always moved too quickly, too soon."


"We stay put and we don't move till we get our orders, and this is why we are not like any other militia. A militiaman will fire whenever he likes at whatever he likes," explains a gunmen who says he has been involved in firing Katyusha rockets into Israel. "We have specific orders. Even when we fire rockets we know when and where to fire and each of the men manning the launchers runs to a specific hiding place after firing the rockets."


The men say they seek hiding because every launching pad is targeted by Israeli jets within 10 to 15 minutes.


'Hit commando and Golani soldiers'


Another terrorist, claiming to be Sayed Ali's brother, says Hizbullah teaches its fighters to be patient. "During our training we spend days in empty buildings without talking to anyone or doing anything. They tell me go and sit in that building, and I go and sit there and wait."


Ali who is the commander of his village says he is waiting for further instructions as how to act. "Hizbullah hasn't even mobilized all its active fighters, and the Israelis are calling their reserve units," he said.


"We don't take anyone who knocks at our door and says 'I want to join'. We raise our fighters. We take them when they are young kids and raise them to become Hizbullah fighters. Every fighter we have believes that the ultimate form of being is martyrdom," Sayed Ali says, showing pride in the group's discipline and secretiveness.


Ali told the Guardian that he has been preparing for this fight for years and admits that Iran supported Hizbullah all along. "When we defeated them in 2000 we did that with (Katyusha) rockets. We had six years to prepare for this day - the Americans are sending laser-guided missiles to the Israelis, what's wrong if the Iranians help us? When the Syrians were here we would get stuff through their supply lines, now it's more difficult."


'If Israel wins we will go back dozens of years'


Ali and his men said they see the current fighting with Israel as a war of survival, not only for Hizbullah but for the Shiite faith.


He says the struggle is not just against Israel but also against the Lebanese Sunni. "If Israel comes out victorious from this conflict, this will be a victory for the Sunnis and they will take the Shia community back in history dozens of years to the time when we were only allowed to work as garbage collectors in this country. The Shia will all die before letting this happen again."


He warned that even if the international community asks Hizbullah to lay down its arms in the frame of a ceasefire he and his men will keep their arms.


"This war is episode two in disarming Hizbullah. First they tried to do it through the Lebanese government and the UN. When they failed, the Americans asked the Israelis to do the job."


He refuted Israeli claims the Hizbullah has been weakened: "Things are going very well now, whatever happens we are winning. If they keep bombing us we will stay in the shelters, and with each bomb more people support the resistance. If they invade they will repeat the miserable fate they had in 1982, and if they hold one square foot they will give the Islamic resistance all the legitimacy. If they want to kill Hizbullah they have to kill every Shia in the south of Lebanon."


"The real battle is after the end of this war. We will have to settle score with the Lebanese politicians. We also have the best security and intelligence apparatus in this country, and we can reach any of those people who are speaking against us now. Let's finish with the Israelis and then we will settle scores later."


פרסום ראשון: 07.29.06, 12:15
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