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Daily Observations for 5 December 2019

Daily Observations for 5 December 2019
December 05
16:14 2019

Good morning, and welcome to my Daily Observations.

On my radar: Israel asks U.S. to hold off on lethal aid to Lebanon

The Israeli military is asking the Trump administration to hold off on shipping TOW anti-tank missiles and drones to Lebanon, where Iran’s proxy, Hezbollah, has a strong presence. One Israeli military official, quoted anonymously, was very emphatic about it, in fact. “Washington has not realized that the Hezbollah is Iran’s very strong proxy and that supplying weapons to such an organization that actually is calling the shots in Lebanon is sheer stupidity,” the source was quoted as saying. The Trump administration has been sensitive to Israel’s security needs so there’s a good chance this aid doesn’t go through.

What I’m also tracking:

Europeans rap Iran for working on nuclear-capable missiles [source]

Beijing-Tokyo distrust lingers as record number of Chinese ships seen near Diaoyu Islands [sourceAnalyst comment: Lots of potential here for a miscalculation that could lead to actual conflict.

North Korea warns US to prepare for ‘Christmas gift,’ but no one’s sure what to expect [source]

Iran Is Secretly Moving Missiles Into Iraq, U.S. Officials Say [source]

One final thing:

Perhaps in relation to the above report regarding Iranian missile movement into Iraq: “The officials would not say in what format the intelligence exists. But in the last several weeks there has been movement of Iranian forces and weapons that the US worries could be put in place for a potential attack, if one is ordered by the Iranian regime, the officials said. It’s not clear if a potential threat would come from the central government or Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. [source]

Notable Quotable: 

“I would expect that if we look at the past three or four months, it’s possible they will do something that is irresponsible. It’s possible that they’ll lash out at their neighbors,” — Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, head of the US Central Command, commenting on possible Iranian intentions.



About Author

Jon

Jon

Jonathan Davis holds a BA in political science and an MA in National Security Studies/Intelligence Analysis. He has 30 years' worth of experience reporting on domestic politics and foreign policy.

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