reply to post by skycopilot
HEZBOLLAH SUSPECTED OF SETTING UP CAMP IN VENEZUELA
Senior Israeli political official: Nasrallah established major
terrorist base in Venezuela under Chavez sponsorship. Hezbollah
members collect intelligence from continent, including Brazil,
Argentina, and Peru with objective of carrying out a low-profile
revenge attack for assassination of Imad Mughniyeh
Venezuela has become Hezbollah's major terrorist outpost
in South America. The Venezuelan regime reportedly provides aid for
the terrorist organization that has taken root in its territory,
according to a senior Israeli official. It has recently been made
clear that Israel's public warnings on the issue stem from
intelligence assessments that Hezbollah is investing significant
efforts to carry out terrorist attacks against Israeli targets and
Jewish institutions in Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, and Peru
in a bid to avenge the death of the organization's late leader Imad
Mughniyeh, who was assassinated in Damascus more than a year ago.
According to the Israeli source, Hezbollah operatives in
South America are collecting intelligence to this end. The Israeli
intelligence community estimates that Hezbollah will try as much as
possible not to leave identifying footprints that could associate the
organization with the attack in the wake of such a strike in a bid to
avoid Israel's heavy hand. In the same vein, it is estimated that the
organization will not take public responsibility for a terrorist
attack if it were to carry one out successfully.
This is also the reason the organization is purportedly looking to
carry out an attack far away from Israel.
Egypt has recently exposed cluster of secret
Hezbollah-related terrorist cells that planned on assassinated
Israeli Ambassador to Egypt Shalom Cohen. Another cell that planned
on targeting Israeli tourists was discovered in Jordan. On this
backdrop, Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon warned that should
Hezbollah attack Israeli targets anywhere around the globe, harsh
retaliation will ensue.
During his visit to South America a few weeks ago, Foreign
Minister Avigdor Lieberman handed over information to his Latin
counterparts on Hezbollah's activities in the countries he visited.
According to the Israeli source, the main objective is to signal to
Hezbollah that Israel is aware of the organization's subversive
activities in South America and is keeping close watch.
"We sought to deter them and to say to them that the
Israeli response will be difficult to bear should they try to take
action against Israelis anywhere," warned the source.
Western media outlets have reported in recent months about
a warming relationship between Iran and Venezuela, under the
leadership of anti-American Hugo Chavez. It seems that Hezbollah is
taking advantage of the growing friendship in order to establish
itself in Latin America.
The US Treasury Department indicted two Venezuelan
citizens last year for supporting Hezbollah, and froze their assets
in the United States. One of them, a diplomat of Lebanese Shiite
ancestry, used his position to transfer funds to Hezbollah and to
help members of the organization move between Venezuela and Iran for
training. The other is a travel agent from the capital city, Caracas,
who aided Hezbollah members in planning attacks.
Western counter-terrorism experts warn that Hezbollah and
the Iranian Revolutionary Guards have established special units to
kidnap Jewish businessmen from Latin America and to bring them to