IDF chief says current military focus is ‘being ready for war in the north’

Emanuel (Mannie) Fabian is The Times of Israel's military correspondent

IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi (center) and senior IDF officials meet in northern Israel, February 14, 2024. (Israel Defense Forces)
IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi (center) and senior IDF officials meet in northern Israel, February 14, 2024. (Israel Defense Forces)

During an assessment in northern Israel, IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi says the IDF is preparing for war in the north, amid Hezbollah’s daily attacks from Lebanon.

“We are not finishing this without returning the residents to Metula and all the communities in the north, with a very high level of security,” Halevi says, referring to some 80,000 Israelis displaced by Hezbollah’s attacks.

“We are now focused on being ready for war in the north. If it does not end in war, it will not end with any compromise to the achievements,” he says.

“Hezbollah is not here on the fence, we will push back all its capabilities, it will be much quieter here, there will be much more stability here and then residents can return,” Halevi continues. “Will this happen tomorrow? Probably not. It will take some time.”

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