Hezbollah Military Weapons and Military Power on Israel’s Radar – Israel continues to believe that Hezbollah controls security at the Lebanese port of Beirut, where the bombing took place. Israeli political analyst Yoni Ben Menachem believes that Hezbollah is using the port to smuggle and stockpile weapons.
Hezbollah Military Weapons and Military Power on Israel’s Radar
Founded by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards in 1982, Hezbollah is the most powerful armed group in Lebanon. The United States and other Western countries list the group as a terrorist organization.
Hezbollah militias have fought Israel twice before. The group is said to be growing in strength after its involvement in the 2012 war in Syria to help President Bashar al-Assad.
Lebanon’s Shiite community fully supports Hezbollah’s political movement and armed militias.
This group and its allies contributed to the formation of the current Lebanese government. Hezbollah’s possession of weapons has long been a subject of international debate. This is because Hezbollah is not an official military instrument of the state.
Hezbollah claims that it needs the weapons to counter Israeli and militant attacks in Syria. With over 45,000 soldiers, Hezbollah’s military arsenal is as follows.
Hezbollah has a very large collection of firearms. The weapons include long guns, short guns, sniper rifles, light machine guns, and general-purpose machine guns.
The group owns a 1973 Soviet-made AKS-74U carbine, which is now a rather rare weapon. According to a 2015 report, Hezbollah also possesses an American Barrett M82 anti-tank weapon.
Hezbollah members could have carried either the M16 or the AK-47, but most chose the AK-47 because it was lighter and easier to use, the report said.
Other members seemed to carry M4 weapons. Hezbollah had a number of AK-47s, M16s, H&K G3s, and FN FALs from the civil war in the 1980s.
Hezbollah has a variety of RPGs (grenade launchers) for destroying tanks and other heavy equipment. They are rumored to have the RPG-7, RPG-29, and RPG-30, all of which were manufactured in the Soviet Union or Russia. They also have American M72 LAW anti-tank missiles.
It is also rumored to have hundreds of anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs). Hezbollah possesses a large number of Russian anti-tank guided missiles, namely 9K111 Fagot and 9M113 Konkurs. They also carry American-made M40 shoulder-fired missile launchers and recoilless rifles.
Hezbollah is believed to have a large number of anti-aircraft weapons captured during the Lebanese Civil War. It is rumored to have a large number of KC-12As and KC-19s. It is also rumored to have a number of MANPADS (Man-Portable Air Defence System) with a range of 4,200 to 5,200 meters, including SA-7, SA-14, SA-16, QW-1 Vanguard, Misagh-1.
SA-18, unidentified air defense systems such as Iran’s Misagh-2, and various air defense missiles (SAMs) such as the Soviet and Russian-made SA-2, SA-9, SA-17, and SA-22.
Hezbollah is also rumored to possess US FIM-92 Stinger MANPADS. It seems that Hezbollah is procuring these latest weapons from Afghanistan. However, it is unclear whether Hezbollah has such anti-aircraft weapons; the FIM-92 has a passive guidance system and uses infrared light to fire.
Missiles and Rockets
Hezbollah fires hundreds of missiles from its Type 63 launcher, which can launch multiple missiles at once. It is also rumored to have tens of thousands of missiles launched from its BM-21 Grad launcher. It is also rumored to have Iranian-made Zelzal-2 missiles.
Hezbollah is said to have dozens of Iranian-made Fateh-110 missiles in its arsenal. It is also believed to possess several Scud missiles, a Soviet-made tactical missile that has been exported to third countries on numerous occasions.
Hezbollah is also said to have tanks, albeit in small numbers, which is worrisome considering that it is a non-state actor. It has the T-54, T-55, T-62, and T-72, as well as the BMP-1 and BMP-2 infantry vehicles.