Aug 08, 2022
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US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo warned Lebanon on Wednesday, Sept. 4, that Israel is aware of a second, bigger Iranian-Hizballah missile factory and that they are preparing to bomb it reports Debka.
Pompeo relayed the urgent message directly to the Foreign Minister of Lebanon, Jubran Basil. Basil is a close associate of Hizballah chief Hassan Nasrallah. The secretary chose to relay the threat to Basil directly rather than via the usual embassy channels. He relayed it one day after the IDF revealed detailed evidence of the existence of a factory at Nebi Shait to reporters. The factory’s purpose is for arming Hezbollah’s surface missiles with precision kits.

Pompeo noted that Israel intelligence is well aware that Iran and Hizballah were constructing another, more significant factory in Lebanon, to help upgrade their missile project. They were hoping to utilize the Nebi Shait plant as a red herring for Jerusalem.

Pompeo ordered Lebanon to dismantle the second factory immediately since Israel was already preparing for its destruction. The secretary emphasized that Israel would be acting with full U.S support, whatever the outcome of the operation may be.

In a demonstration of support of Pompeo’s ultimatum to Lebanon, the IDF boosted its air defense systems on both the Lebanese and Syria borders with extra Patriot missiles on Wednesday night. They were deployed in preparation for a scenario whereby Hizballah retaliated for the potential destruction of its signature missile project by releasing explosive drones into Israeli territory.

 During Netanyahu’s visit to the UK where he met Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Netanyahu also met US Secretary of Defense, Mark Esper. Accompanying Netanyahu are head of the IDF Operations Directorate Maj. Gen. Aharon Chavilah and Israeli Air Force commander Maj. Gen. Amikam Nurkin. They are to present Israel’s plans of action in southern Lebanon according to the report.