Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu revealed on September 29, 2020, in an address broadcast to the UN General Assembly, the locations of Hizbullah’s production and storage facilities for missiles adjacent to a gas storage site and civilian residences in the Janh neighborhood of Beirut. Netanyahu accused Hizbullah of endangering the civilian population. He tied the massive August 2020 explosion in the Beirut Port to Hizbullah weapons depots stored in the port.
In a statement released after Netanyahu’s speech, the IDF Spokesperson revealed the underground facilities for the production of precision missiles in two other neighborhoods in west Beirut, Laylaki and Chouaifet, located beneath residential buildings and located near a mosque, church, and medical center.
Nasrallah denied Netanyahu’s remarks and invited media representatives in Lebanon to visit and check the sites revealed by Netanyahu to see if they contained missiles. Hizbullah made an immediate explanatory PR effort to show that there were no missiles at the site, but in the reporters’ videos, Israeli intelligence identified “a laser cutting machine, a hydraulic cutting machine, a metal rolling machine, and a press for bending metal” – all equipment that can produce components for precision-guided missiles. According to military intelligence, the cutters could be used to create “warheads” and “stabilization fins.” A senior intelligence source who provided the information to Netanyahu said the disclosure of this information caused Nasrallah great embarrassment. Nasrallah hurried to invite journalists to one specific site rather than the other two. “We know what he has hastily removed from there,” said the source. “Nasrallah was sweating on the day of his speech. He knows what our level of (intelligence) penetration is.”
A reporter from the Beirut-based Al Mayadeen satellite news channel was permitted into part of a closed area at the site and photographed an advanced hydraulic CNC machine from Turkey, used for cutting and shaping metal tubes.1
Despite Israel’s exposé, Hizbullah denied that it manufactures and stores missiles in civilian residential areas and expressed satisfaction with Nasrallah’s course of public relations. Sources close to Nasrallah claim that “Netanyahu lost the PR battle within hours, and he didn’t think for a moment that would happen.” They continued: “Netanyahu fell victim to his traditional showmanship, and it was a professional error of strategic dimensions….He propagated false information to incite against Hizbullah at the UN.”3 In an interview, Nasrallah charged, “Netanyahu was inciting the Lebanese people against Hizbullah, as usual.”4
It appears that despite Nasrallah’s “blitz” of media denials, Hizbullah continues to manufacture and stockpile missiles and rockets inside civilian areas that serve as human shields. This is how things are in the densely populated neighborhoods of Beirut, the villages and towns of southern Lebanon, and the Baalbek region.
View IDF Spokesperson’s video: EXPOSED: Hizbullah Precision Guided Missile Sites in Beirut (IDF/YouTube) https://youtu.be/4ZcsRrSnqGs
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