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Iran held planning meetings with terror groups to attack Israel, kill civilians: Report

Iran's flag (Dreamstime/TNS)
October 13, 2023

A new report indicates that Hezbollah met with Iran-backed terrorist groups in March, urging them to prepare for a war with Israel that would include a ground invasion.

According to a report by The New York Times based on Syrian and Iranian sources, in March, Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Hezbollah, conducted an extended meeting online with Iran-backed strategists. Nasrallah reportedly told the Iran-backed groups to prepare for war with Israel that would include a ground invasion.

According to two of the online participants from Syria and Iran, the Hezbollah leader said the anticipated war with Israel would “mark a new era.”

Paul Cruickshank, head editor at CTC Sentinel, shared The New York Times report on X. In addition to outlining The New York Times report, Cruickshank stated, “My analysis: This extraordinarily detailed new reporting from the New York Times indicates that we may be heading towards a regional war whose architects are Tehran and Hezbollah. With tensions escalating every minute, can the Middle East pull back from the brink?”

The New York Times reported that people familiar with the Hamas terrorist attacks against Israel indicated leaders from Iran, Hamas, and Hezbollah helped plan the brutal attacks for more than a year, provided Hamas terrorists with training, and had prior knowledge of the attacks.

Training for the attacks reportedly occurred in Syria and Lebanon. Based on information from Iranians and a Syrian with knowledge of the attacks, The New York Times reported that a secret joint command center was established in Beirut.

As part of the training reportedly led by Hezbollah’s top commandos, Hamas terrorists were instructed on the raiding of Israeli communities and were trained to take civilians as hostages.

READ MORE: Iran-backed terror groups threatening to join war against Israel, expert says

The New York Times report also reported that two Iranians explained how Hezbollah created distractions along the northern border of Israel in order to convince the Israeli military that any potential threat would come from the northern border.

Israeli intelligence officials previously told The New York Times in September that they had obtained information that suggested Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ali Khamenei, had called for actions to be taken against Israel, including the targeting of Israeli citizens, carrying out sabotage efforts in Israel, and smuggling weapons to Palestinians in order to spark a civil war in the region of the West Bank.