Two Israeli soldiers were killed and seven others were wounded during an attack near the Lebanese border on Wednesday.
Hezbollah, a long time Israeli rival in Lebanon, claimed responsibility for the attack and Israel told the United Nations that it would take necessary steps to defend itself.
According to Haaretz, an unarmored vehicle was hit by an anti-tank missile near the border. Israel returned fire and the “IDF declared a closed military zone in the area between the Dafna kibbutz in the upper Galilee to the Mas’ade village in the eastern Golan Heights.”
As The New York Times reads it, this is the most serious flare-up in the area in years. The paper explains:
“The attack was the latest in a string of recent events along Israel’s northern frontiers that have sharply escalated tensions between Israel and Hezbollah after a prolonged period of relative calm since the last war between them in 2006.
“… Several retired Israeli military generals said that Wednesday’s exchange was more serious than previous ones, and that it might be difficult to avoid further escalation.
“‘The tension in the north, it’s a very tricky and I would say flammable situation,’ Israel Ziv, a reserve major general who once led the army’s operations directorate, said in a call with international journalists. ‘It’s very clear that, very easily from events and retaliation, we will find ourselves in a war that does not belong to Israel.'”
Reuters reports that a Spanish peacekeeper working in Lebanon was killed when Israel launched airstrikes.
“The U.N. special coordinator for Lebanon urged all parties to refrain from any further destabilization of the situation, while Lebanon’s prime minister said his country was committed to the U.N. resolution that ended the 2006 war,” Reuters reported.