Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah appeared in his first address following the 33-day July War in 2006, called the outcome of the war a ‘divine victory’ that will set new equations in the region.
In his resounding address on September 22, 2006, Sayyed Nasrallah said his well-known statement: “Era of defeats has gone, it’s time of victories.”
Victory and Defeat Controversy
Just as the cessation of hostilities was announced on August 14, 2006, questions were raised on the outcome of the war. On the Lebanese side, more than 1200 Lebanese civilians were martyred and at least 4,000 others were injured, added to the mass destruction caused by the heavy Israeli bombardment throughout 33 days. On the other hand, at least 150 Israelis were killed and 450 others were injured.
Given these figures, doubts were raised whether Lebanon and the resistance have emerged victorious or not.
For long years, the controversy of victory and defeat in wars has been heated. While many voices take number of casualties as an indicator in this regard, others focus on different factors.
Talking about the definition of victory in wars, we can find out that victory is defined as the ability to achieve the goals set at the start of any war along with the ability to invest the military achievements in terms of politics.
Going back to the last decade, the World War II can be a good example to prove the abovementioned theory.
Only 17% of the war’s victims were from the Axis powers, while the 83% of the victims were from the Allies, the side who emerged victorious at the end of the war.
July War Israeli Goals
Returning to July War, the Zionist entity announced the goals of launching the aggression against Lebanon as:
Releasing the two Israeli soldiers abducted by Hezbollah fighters on July 12, 2006
Halting the launch of rockets by Hezbollah operatives at the occupied territories
It is noteworthy here to mention that Israeli officials, back then, used the term “crushing Hezbollah” while talking about the July War goals.
The war was over in August and none of the three goals was achieved. The bodies of the two abducted Israeli soldiers were returned the next year (July 2007) in an indirect German-mediated swap deal between Hezbollah and the Zionist entity.
Hezbollah fighters didn’t cease to launch rockets. The Israeli cities were under the Lebanese resistance fire for 33 days.
Moreover, Hezbollah kept his weapons. And even more, the Lebanese resistance movement has grown considerably stronger since the 2006.
Thirteen years passed since the July War, which set up the major balance of power between the Lebanese resistance and the Zionist entity. On the thirteenth anniversary of the war, former Israeli Chief of Staff, Gadi Eisenkot lists, in an article published by the Washington Institute on July 8, 2019, the “strategic” goals set by the Zionist entity at the start of July War.
“Strengthening Israeli deterrence in the region”
“Halting terrorism from Lebanon’s sovereign territory”
“Forcing the Lebanese government to take responsibility for the south”
“Pressuring Hezbollah to return the kidnapped soldiers”
“Causing significant damage to Hezbollah and its military capabilities”
“Keeping Syria and the Palestinian territories out of the war”
None of the goals announced by Tel Aviv in 2006 was mentioned by the Israeli retired general. The Israeli tone, while talking about July War goals, was not just softened by setting totally different ones, but also these goals were replaced by others that show the Zionist entity’s incapacity to deal with Hezbollah.
When an occupation military, once called the invincible army in the region, uses the term “deterrence” while talking about a power fighting it, then this occupation is questioning its existence, and thus acknowledging that Hezbollah has imposed his own equation of “Lebanese deterrence”.
Away from Eisenkot article, Israeli officials have been throughout the last years looking at Hezbollah as the one Arab force to have denied the Israeli occupation military a single decisive victory in the past three decades.
With Hezbollah’s nightmarish threats of conquering the Galilee, showering the Zionist entity with precision missiles, and striking Haifa’s ammonia tanks or Dimona’s nuclear reactor, the Israeli military commanders believe that only a ceasefire will make them safe again.
The Israeli people, meanwhile, look at their army’s ‘defensive’ efforts- the concrete barrier on the Lebanese-Palestinian frontier and the multi-billion-dollar missile defense system- as useless measures.
Thirteen years on 2006, memories of the July War confrontations with Hezbollah, added to the expertise the Lebanese resistance movement has gained from the Syrian war, are enough to serve as a deterrent against a future conflict with an undefeated Hezbollah!