Lebanon/Hezbollah-Syria: Al Ahram reported on 30 April a televised speech by Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Lebanese Hezbollah. He confirmed that Hezbollah fighters are aiding government troops in Syria.
“A large number of (Syrian rebels) were preparing to capture villages inhabited by Lebanese,” so it was “normal to offer every possible and necessary aid to help the Syrian army, popular committees (pro-government militia) and the Lebanese,” Hassan Nasrallah said in a televised speech.
He warned the Syrian opposition, “You will not be able to take Damascus by force and you will not be able to topple the regime militarily. This is a long battle. Syria has real friends in the region and in the world who will not allow Syria to fall into the hands of America or Israel.”
The timing of Nasrallah’s speech suggests that it is a response to the discussion in the US about alleged Syrian use of chemical weapons as a red line for increased US intervention. It signals an escalation of the conflict and reconfirms that the Syrian fighting has become a regional war by proxy.
Al Arabiya reported that the bodies of 30 Hezbollah fighters were returned to Lebanon yesterday, bringing the total number of Hezbollah fighters reported killed to over 130.