IDF Trained Personnel In Europe Preparing For Operation Against ‘Hezbollah Tunnels’

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IDF Trained Personnel In Europe Preparing For Operation Against 'Hezbollah Tunnels'

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Israel’s Defense Forces sent 11 Engineering Corps services members to be trained in Europe in preparation of Operation Northern Shield, Haaretz reported.

The outlet reported that the services members were trained and learned from excavation experts about working in rough terrain and with similar rock types as the ones in which Hezbollah dug its tunnels from Lebanon into Israel.

According to the report, the IDF realized it would need to counter Hezbollah’s tunnel project as early as 2015. A team of engineers, intelligence officers and technology experts deemed it necessary to prepare a plan to deal with the tunnels at a later date.

In 2017, it was decided to send 11 members of the corps to Europe for special training to learn about hard-rock excavations.

“We realized we had to train people to excavate,” an anonymous senior IDF officer, who is deeply involved in the operation said prior to the beginning of Northern Shield. “We encountered such tunnels in the Second Lebanon War. We called them ‘nature reserves,’ which served as underground command centers.”

The trip to Europe allegedly allowed the engineering team to learn from the best experts in the world in the field.

“We trained in terrain we weren’t accustomed to, working in hard earth and rocky terrain and in tough areas, in order to learn about excavating,” the officer said.

The IDF reportedly understood that excavating along the northern border would require a different approach than it required near Gaza.

“In contrast to the south, where bucket auger drills remove sand easily and quickly, in the north the army uses diamond drills, which cut through the rock more slowly and make for slow progress.”

At some excavation sites in the north even civilians take part in the drilling, according to Haaretz. Other sites only include members of the Engineering Corps, some of them were part of the team that was trained in Europe.

“We’re preparing the IDF and the corps for all challenges, using professionals we hope will remain in the army for many years,” said the officer.

Reportedly, not many people knew of the existence of Hezbollah tunnels and knowledge of them was kept secret. The people involved in the operation were made to believe that they were participating in routine training.

Former Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon claimed that the country’s officials had been hiding knowledge of the existence of Hezbollah underground tunnels for years before the IDF announced they were launching a military operation.

Operation Northern Shield was announced on December 4th, to destroy alleged Hezbollah tunnels heading to northern Israel. Israel claimed that the tunnels were to be used to transfer fighters into the country in case of a potential future conflict. The Lebanese Army issued a statement calling Israel’s accusations “mere allegations, according to Lebanon’s National News Agency.

Two tunnels have been reportedly discovered by December 7th and work on collapsing them is on-going.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited the Israel-Lebanon border on the afternoon of December 6th to brief foreign diplomats on the Israeli army’s operation.

The premier said that, “We are systematically taking the tunnels weapon from our enemies and we will act decisively and systematically against anyone who attacks us. Hezbollah and Hamas know this.” He also did not miss the chance to accuse Iran of being the “one big enemy.”

Also on December 6th, the IDF Twitter account released two propaganda videos in Arabic for residents of Southern Lebanon.

The first video shows a map of Kafr Kila, the Lebanese village in which one of the alleged cross-border attack tunnels was dug. It describes active Hezbollah sites inside civilian areas and finally said “Every third home in southern Lebanon contains terror.”

The second video is a summary overview of UN Security Council Resolution 1701, which ended the 2006 Second Lebanon War, followed by a list of alleged Hezbollah violations. The videos were subsequently also published in English.

These two postings were a response to Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri’s accusations that Israel consistently violates Resolution 1701 by infiltrating Lebanese territory and airspace, but stressed that operation Northern Shield and Israel’s accusations are “no reason for escalation.”

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  • You can call me Al

    The free World better gear up, Ukraine, The Lebanon, Ukraine, Russia, China, Iran, Syria, Venezuela and many Countries in Africa amongst the few……bayonets ready.

  • Bob

    Hang on – didn’t the IDF literally find a single tunnel – that ended around 40 meters into Israeli territory – barely covering the border zone, and of no tactical purpose whatsoever to Hezbollah? Could this whole story be extremely dubious and diversionary – what with Netanyahu’s latest corruption issues, including investigative recommendations against his wife, Netanyahu’s international defense of Saudi Arabia’s bloody and clumsy crown-pretender, and Netanyahu’s dread of imminent elections?

    • BPGSJLBDLSE

      The IDF have known about tunnels on the Lebanese border for years. This is just a ploy by Nutty to save his skin by instigating a war – or at least some kind of short term military action.

      https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/201812061070443845-defence-minister-israel-hezbollah-tunnels/

      • Bob

        Short tunnels from Lebanon into Israel serve no strategic military purpose for Hezbollah – if Israeli military suddenly declared they found one – it strongly suggests a timely domestic Israeli political exercise. Such a single tunnel could likewise have been an existing simple criminal exercise – narcotics syndicates exchanging goods for money from Lebanese to Israeli criminals – with pay off’s through the Israeli military zone.

    • Pave Way IV

      No, the IDF did not literally find a single tunnel. They CLAIMED the did, but (so far) have failed to show even the most cursory visual evidence that there is a tunnel anywhere around Kafr Kila. They don’t even claim that they have dug one up – so far it’s just whining and some vid of Israeli drilling and maybe a few IDF with a ground-penetrating radar. There was a mystery video from inside a tunnel – somewhere – shown with the claims, but nothing connecting that tunnel with the Kafr Kila location. It doesn’t look like they have even excavated down 20 feet, much less 80.

      In other words, Netanyahu is preparing for a few limited incursions into south Lebanon using the Terror Tunnel pretext to provoke Hezbollah, followed by quick retreats and air strikes. Just enough theatre to distract from his criminal prosecution. If a few IDF get killed in the process, then that ‘tragedy’ will be milked world-wide for months to further demonize Hezbollah and Iran.

      • Promitheas Apollonious

        I dont think if they attack Hez and Lebanon it will not be few IDF only dead. This time around I hope also Hez do not stop eliminating the scum of the earth just because their patrons and allies at UN as before run to save their asses.

  • R Trojson

    Just look at what Tesla Founder Elon Musk was doing in California. Weaponizing his tunneling technology will allow IDF to move troops miles into the interior of Lebanon completely undetected. That is the only reason that makes any sense.

    • Daniel Miller

      you are a fucking idiot…

      • verner

        hey Miller, agree entirely with your view about trojson!

        • R Trojson

          How about sharing you view on this SF article. This board is not about your views on me. Read the article and express your opinion or are you not smart enough for that.

      • R Trojson

        Exactly what do you take issue with? IDF is focused on developing expertise in how to tunnel. My guess is because they are going to start tunneling. Not sure what you believe. When IDF starts tunneling they will us the best tunneling technology on the planet. The IDF by their nature are weaponizing tunneling technology to use against their enemies. Their tunnels initially deliver special forces and eventually deliver heavy weapons and tanks.
        Then there are the idiots here that believe IDF is developing tunneling expertise so that can destroy tunnels, they are already the leaders in detecting and destroying tunnels.

  • Tommy Jensen

    That means Israel will have to establish a military buffer zone in South Lebanon for security and Inherent Resolve Freedom.
    UNSC says Hezbollah should let down all their weapons and let IDF make police searches in all villages and secure the water controle for innocent civilians in South Lebanon.
    But Hezbollah denies all UN resolutions against International law and order and act as trojan horses.

    • H Eccles

      ‘UNSC says Hezbollah should let down all of their weapons’… etc

      And which UNSC resolution would that be??.. let me guess, the one you plucked out of your hasbara trained orifice?

  • verner

    not to worry -whatever they, the israelis, come up with, they are toast and will soon have to start swimming in order to survive – a longer diaspora awaits them than the one they are trying to end right now. any and all rights as a sovereign country are forfeited and therefore there are good and sound reasons to de-recognize the country.

    join the BDS-movement today since there is nothing that comes out of israel that can’t be found better and cheaper and more humanly elsewhere.

  • Smaug

    This is not a surprising statement, there are several places they might have done this in (Europe is a vague description which is probably deliberate). Also, the IDF had a lot of experience with Hamas’ tunnels during the Gazan Wars, so they probably thought of this before even Hezbollah did.

  • Sinbad2

    If I was a betting man, I would bet that they are building a pipeline to the Litani river, to steal water.

  • H Eccles

    “Also on December 6th, the IDF Twitter account released two propaganda videos in Arabic for residents of Southern Lebanon.”

    cos residents of Southern Lebanon have got nothing better to do than to link to scum-face IDF’s website.