Meanwhile, on Sunday, Hamas and Hizballah fired rockets at Israeli towns from Lebanon, and the IDF responded with airstrikes. The possibility that Hizballah—which is better trained, better armed, and more experienced than Hamas—might open up another front has Israeli generals worried, but the Iran-backed terrorist group seems at the moment to be avoiding confrontation. Hanin Ghaddar explains its dilemma:
If Hizballah decided to enter the war, the group would likely launch thousands of its missiles per day and use the precision ones to target sensitive Israeli infrastructure. However, the threat of these missiles has been, so far, more powerful than the missiles themselves: if Hizballah uses them, it will lose them, and it will take many years and incalculable effort and resources to restock its arsenal. Hizballah would be more exposed without this major threat, and Iran would lose its strongest pressure tools in the next phase of the war.
In addition . . . a full-scale war would also mean a domestic loss for Hizballah. It would expose its incapacity to protect and relocate the already frustrated Shiite community, challenge its vulnerable political dynamics inside an economically and politically shattered Lebanon, and reveal that the group entered a war of this magnitude without securing guarantees for the postwar reconstruction of its country.
But if the current strategy of limited response by Hizballah got out of control, the regime in Tehran could see escalation as a way to project power, and an all-out war could quickly materialize. This could turn into an existential war for both Israel and Iran, with inevitable U.S. involvement.