Hezbol­lah poses home­land threat, US says,

Jerusalem Post - - FRONT PAGE - • By MICHAEL WILNER Jerusalem Post Cor­re­spon­dent

WASHINGTON – Hezbol­lah is per­fect­ing its abil­ity to strike at the United States from within its bor­ders, a se­nior US coun­ter­in­tel­li­gence of­fi­cial said on Tues­day.

Hezbol­lah’s “global at­tack in­fra­struc­ture” in­cludes op­er­a­tional cells within the US, Na­tional Coun­tert­er­ror­ism Cen­ter direc­tor Ni­cholas Ras­mussen told re­porters at the State De­part­ment.

“While I’m not here to speak pub­licly about any spe­cific, cred­i­ble or im­mi­nent threat to the home­land, we in the in­tel­li­gence com­mu­nity do in fact see con­tin­ued ac­tiv­ity on be­half of Hezbol­lah here in­side the home­land,” Ras­mussen said. “It is our as­sess­ment that Hezbol­lah is de­ter­mined to give it­self a po­ten­tial home­land op­tion as a crit­i­cal com­po­nent of its ter­ror­ism play­book.

“We are watch­ing very closely for ad­di­tional signs of that ac­tiv­ity,” he added.

Ras­mussen an­nounced a multi-mil­lion dol­lar re­ward for in­for­ma­tion on two Hezbol­lah op­er­a­tives: up to $7 mil­lion for in­for­ma­tion on Talal Hamiyah, and up to $5m. for in­for­ma­tion on Fu’ad Shukr. Both men are in­volved in plan­ning at­tacks out­side of Le­banon or against Amer­i­cans and their al­lies.

“With all of the fo­cus on ISIS and al-Qaida, I can as­sure you that those of us who are fo­cused on ter­ror­ism for the en­tire pe­riod since 9/11 have never taken our eye off of the Hezbol­lah threat,” Ras­mussen said.

Hezbol­lah re­lies on sup­port from Iran for its arms. US Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump planned to de­liver a speech out­lin­ing his “com­pre­hen­sive pol­icy” to­ward Iran and its proxy or­ga­ni­za­tions later on Fri­day.

(Ali Hashisho/Reuters)

HEZBOL­LAH FIGHT­ERS sit on the back of a truck mounted with an anti-air­craft weapon near the Syria-Le­banon bor­der in Au­gust.

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