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Senior Hezbollah commander killed in wave of Israeli airstrikes, Hezbollah bombards Kiryat Shmona

Hezbollah deputy leader reiterates: No truce until end of Gaza War

Ali Muhammad al-Debes was reportedly killed by the IDF on Feb. 14, 2024 (Photo: Screenshot from X)

Israel announced on Thursday that a senior commander in Hezbollah’s elite Radwan Force was killed in an airstrike on Wednesday night, as the terror group continued its attacks on Israeli towns, especially targeting the northern Israel town of Kiryat Shmona.

The killed commander was identified as Ali Muhammad al-Debes, a senior officer in the special-ops Radwan Force. Alongside him, his deputy and another Hezbollah terrorist were also killed.

Al-Debes was one of the masterminds of the terror attack at Megiddo Junction last March, one among many other attacks he carried out against Israel.

The strike killing the three terrorists in the town of Nabatiyeh was carried out as part of a larger wave of Israeli strikes against Hezbollah targets across southern Lebanon, coming after Hezbollah rockets killed an IDF soldier in Safed the day before.

Since then, the IDF has markedly stepped up the intensity of its attacks and carried out several waves of airstrikes.

Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said on Thursday that the IDF had stepped up by “one level out of 10,” indicating that “the IDF possesses very significant additional strength” and “Air Force jets currently flying in the skies of Lebanon have heavier bombs for more distant targets.”

“We can attack not only at 20 kilometers [from the border], but also at 50 kilometers, and in Beirut and anywhere else,” Gallant added.

“Over the past week, Israel has demonstrated a willingness to assassinate Hezbollah commanders. Some of these attempts have succeeded, others haven’t. But the attempts themselves demonstrate a growing Israeli exasperation with continued attacks on the north,” said David Daoud, senior fellow with the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

Ten people died in the strike, including three Hezbollah operatives and seven civilians who were in the building with them.

In addition to the senior commanders, Hezbollah announced that several more of its members were killed in the Israeli strikes, raising its death toll since last October to 205.

In response to the Israeli strikes, Hezbollah claimed responsibility for launching ten attacks against Israel over the past 24 hours, especially targeting the city of Kiryat Shmona with several rocket barrages and at least two anti-tank guided missiles. No injuries or major damage were reported.

Following this latest escalation, the terror group’s deputy leader Naim Kassem reiterated that Hezbollah was not ready to stand down and stop its attacks.

There will be no stopping “support for Gaza” – i.e. attacks against Israel – no surrender to threats and no discussion over the future of southern Lebanon until the end of the war in the Gaza Strip, Kassem said.

Hezbollah has vowed further retaliation for the deaths of civilians in the latest Israeli strikes.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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