Israel faces existential blow as bloody war sparks simultaneous attack

Hezbollah Radwan group have plans to invade Northern Israel

Israel risks an “existential blow” if it launches a ground invasion into Gaza, a geopolitical analyst has warned.

The grave warning comes as Israeli airstrikes relentlessly pound locations across the Gaza Strip in response to Hamas’ atrocities on October 7 that killed more than 1,400 Israelis.

According to the Gaza Health Ministry, 3,785 people have been killed in Gaza, the majority of them women, children and older adults.

Israel has massed troops in the area and is expected to launch a ground invasion into the besieged enclave, though military officials say no decision has been made.

According to Irina Tsukerman, geopolitical analyst and president of Scarab Rising, a ground invasion would be fraught with danger.

She said: “The highest risk of escalation comes from a potential second front by Hezbollah, which has already been pressuring Israel from the North and threatened a serious attack in the event of a ground operation.”

Hezbollah is an Iranian-backed militia based in Lebanon that has threatened to go to war against Israel over Gaza.

According to Tsukerman, Israel has called up an “unprecedented number” of reservists which should be sufficient to both control the Gaza Strip in the event of a ground operation and seal off the other borders against potential attacks by Hezbollah, Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps in Syria, and Khitaib Hezbollah militias in Iraq.

Iran may very well be spurring Hezbollah on to attack Israel “but strategically cannot afford the devastation of its premier regional force which it may need to control the neighborhood and to use as a threat against Israel in the future”, she explained.

“For that reason, it will likely not attack right away but will watch closely what happens in Gaza, and what level of pressure Israel will come under from the US and other countries.”

Worst case scenario

In Tsukerman’s opinion, the most “pressing concern” is a miscalculation by one of the sides, such as the 2006 fiasco that saw Israel and Hamas fight a month-long bloody war that left the former humiliated and latter crowing about its “divine victory”.

The current assault risks history repeating itself, with Hezbollah using more force than required to keep up the appearance of engagement that results in serious damage inside Israel or casualties, the analyst warned.

The risk is partly offset by the presence by the US and British forces in the region, noted Tsukerman.

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However, Hamas, too, has calculated in advance that Israel would likely put troops on the ground in Gaza and that the war would be “protracted and bloody”, she said.

The million-dollar question is how much ammunition the terrorists have accumulated on the ground and whether they can make use of enough of it to decimate Israeli forces, Tsukerman continued.

“The worst case scenario is a simultaneous attack on Israeli positions by all the proxies, but unlike Hamas none of them have an element of surprise at their disposal (quite the opposite, they are expected to attack), and only Hezbollah may present a serious military challenge due to its rocket arsenal,” she said.

Tsukerman continued: “Hezbollah is likely to be highly calculating and only get involved if it sees an opportunity to strike an existential blow to Israel’s capabilities without also getting wiped out.

“For that reason, it is not likely to come into play until well into a ground invasion of Gaza and only if Israel loses significant support from the international community and is hemorrhaging forces.”

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