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"The Next War Will Be Bloody": A Trip Along Israel's Tense Northern Border

The next war will be pretty bloody for both sides. Israel will evacuate its population and I suggest the Lebanese do the same,” Lt.-Col. (res.) Sarit Zehavi told The Jerusalem Post at a briefing in Metulla, Israel’s northernmost town at the border with Lebanon.

Zehavi heads Alma, a local organization that briefs visitors about the security situation – which has grown a bit tense of late. In the event of war with Hezbollah, Metulla is expected to be one of the communities evacuated.

But despite the ever-present risk of conflict with the Lebanese Shi’ite group, the community of 2,000 people continues to grow. As Zehavi spoke on Tuesday, Lebanese workers could be spotted in the distance, and tractors rolled down the streets of Metulla. It was a business-as-usual scene that belied the threats overshadowing the border region.

Israel has long avoided evacuating civilians during wars, but is looking to change that policy in the North. In addition to the threat posed by Hezbollah’s stockpile of more than 100,000 rockets, the IDF is now concerned about the very real possibility of ground attacks against Israeli communities.

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