Can We At Least Stop Funding Hezbollah?

Written by Daniel Horowitz

Foreign policy is no different from domestic policy in that most programs our government wants to fund address problems that our previous policies caused. Hence, the cycle of government. When it comes to foreign aid, how about we first stop funding the problem before throwing endless funding at a solution — while continuing to fund the problem?

Nowhere is this cycle of insanity more evident than with Joe Biden’s massive Israel aid package (primarily consisting of Ukraine grift), while he handcuffs the Jewish state’s self-defense efforts and continues to fund its enemies, including the Iranian-backed Hezbollah in Lebanon.

Remember, not only is Hezbollah Israel’s biggest strategic threat right now, but both the Wall Street Journal and New York Times reported that, at the direction of Iran, Hezbollah hosted Hamas in Lebanon beginning last year to train for the October 7 attack on Israel that left 1,500 dead. Iran’s joint operation room allowed for the Shiite terrorist group to train its junior Sunni partner, Hamas, where they conducted dry runs of the paraglider attacks.

Just know that our government has funded, armed, and shared a tremendous amount of counterintelligence capability with Hezbollah that not only imperils Israel today but likely blinded its intelligence operation from detecting the preparation for the Hamas attack.

Hezbollah (“Party of God”) is a  terrorist group focused on the eradication of Israel.

For years, the U.S. government has been funding the “Lebanese Armed Forces,” which have long since become a proxy for Hezbollah and its Iranian masters, who ultimately control the once Christian-majority country. During the Obama administration, it was clear that the LAF was no longer a potential bulwark against Hezbollah but a conduit for it. Yet we bolstered our military and intelligence aid under the maniacal idea of siding with Iran’s proxies against the Sunni insurgency in Iraq and Syria.

We should have just let the Sunnis and Shiites kill each other, which would have deterred Iran’s aggression against our allies and interests. Instead we served as the Shiite air force in Syria and Iraq by bailing them out of the Sunni insurgency, and then in Lebanon we provided Hezbollah with hardware and training to operate howitzers, grenade launchers, machine guns, mortars, Hellfire missiles, night vision devices, and thermal sights technology.

Throughout the Obama years, and then continuing into Donald Trump’s tenure, the singular focus on “defeating ISIS” established an Iranian hegemony from Tehran to the Mediterranean Sea. It also strengthened Hezbollah’s hand not just on the Lebanon border but on Israel’s Syria-Golan border.

In December 2017, the Pentagon gave the LAF “6 new MD 530G light attack helicopters, 6 new Scan Eagle unmanned aerial vehicles, & leading edge communication and night vision devices” as part of a $120 million package “to conduct border security and counterterrorism operations.” Because we like securing everyone else’s border.

At the time, former Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri admitted that Hezbollah “has come to control the seams of the state and has the final and decisive say in the affairs of Lebanon and the Lebanese.” Appallingly, we had special operators on the border of Lebanon fighting alongside Hezbollah in the same operations throughout those years. In August 2017, Al-Monitor reported that

“US Central Command called the Lebanese army chief and asked him to deny any cooperation [with Hezbollah], telling him that while they are aware of cooperation, it has to be denied publicly.”

This was all the legacy of Trump appointees, including Defense Secretary James Mattis, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, and National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster, who continued Obama’s policies during the first half of Trump’s administration. Now Biden has taken those policies and turbocharged them. As Tony Badran chronicled in Tablet, the Lebanese Armed Forces and the Internal Security Forces used U.S. funding and training to uncover Israeli spies in Hezbollah’s network.

Last year, the ISF helped Hezbollah uncover a network of Israel’s informants who were helping Israel track both Hezbollah’s and Hamas’ movements. It was at this time that numerous assets of Gaza’s Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad, despite their Sunni roots, relocated to Lebanon to collaborate with Hezbollah through Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, now commanded by Esmail Qaani. And it was at that time that Israel’s intelligence capability was blinded, courtesy of U.S. taxpayers and Biden’s alliance with Iran.

“With this process underway, it was necessary to blind the Israelis, using U.S.-trained-and-equipped Lebanese counterintelligence forces—who enjoyed the additional advantage of being immune to Israeli retaliation, as U.S.-trained-and-protected state actors,” observed Badran.

A slew of operations by the ISF uncovered more Israeli informants who were then able to unravel Israel’s intelligence network in Gaza as well as Lebanon. Badran continued:

The ISF’s bust led to their greater cooperation with Hamas to obtain further information. In turn, Al-Akhbar claimed, Hamas began its own investigation in Gaza to track everyone the operative had worked with or remained in contact with since coming to Lebanon from Turkey. That is, the ISF once again contributed to blinding Israel on behalf of Iranian assets. In doing so, it may well have directly aided and reinformed Hamas operational security in Gaza on the eve of the Oct. 7 attack.

Now Hezbollah is stronger than ever and is firing more rockets on Israel’s northern border as the IDF focuses on Gaza in the south. The situation in Lebanon, after years of us funding Hezbollah, is so bad that our embassy in Beirut was attacked and now the State Department is telling everyone to leave the country. But why did the Biden administration build a big $1 billion embassy in that Iranian hellhole to begin with? Our engagement with Lebanon over the years didn’t thwart Hezbollah. On the contrary, we have enabled them and empowered them to endanger Israel and possibly blind Israel to the Hamas massacre.

This is a symptom of a broader disease inherent in our Middle East strategy over the past two decades, whereby we arm multiple sides of Islamic civil wars and often fight ourselves and our own weapons by proxy. Now Biden is dangling more aid and weapons before the Israeli government to protect Israel against our own bad policies. However, he will further hamstring Israel’s ability to use those weapons while continuing to ally with Iran and, by extension, assist Iran’s two proxies who are at war with Israel.

How about, for once, we stop digging and just pull the plug on all U.S. funding and troop movements in Middle Eastern countries? Why don’t we give Israel what it needs to crush the threat, then turn our backs on that dystopian part of the world? It’s not like we don’t have our own 2,000-mile border to worry about.

This article was originally published at