Failed Israeli Drone Assassination Attempt Kills Civilian in Lebanon

On Sunday, an Israeli drone strike against a vehicle near Sewairi killed the driver. Discussion among Lebanese security sources reveal they believe this was an assassination attempt against an unnamed Hamas official who was traveling on the same road.

The discussion gave no indication of how close the Hamas official was to the drone attack, only commenting he “escaped.” The driver who was killed was a Syrian civilian, who was described as delivering groceries in a car belonging to a store owner.

Though Israel has attacked the Bekaa Valley several times this year, the drone attack was the first time the Sewairi area in particular was targeted during the current six months of tit-for-tat strikes across Lebanon.

Though the failed assassination was reported in the Israeli press, Israel has not issued a statement on the drone attack since revealing a civilian was killed. Other strikes in Baalbek targeted what they described as a weapons workshop but which was actually a long-abandoned building.

The building may have been empty, but surrounding homes were not, and damage done to the surrounding area wounded four people, including civilians. Hezbollah confirmed two of its members were slain.

Today, both Israel and Hezbollah returned to attacking the border area, focusing on one another’s military targets. Hezbollah fired some 15 rockets at military sites, although reportedly without doing any damage.

Israel reported attacking Hezbollah sites in southern Lebanon, again not specifying what sort of sites these were, beyond linking them to Hezbollah. Recently many of the targeted sites have turned out to be houses. Two Hezbollah members were reportedly targeted directly in Mays al-Jabal, their fate unknown.

Israel has threatened to invade Lebanon to force Hezbollah out of the border areas and allow displaced civilians to return to northern communities. Assassination of Hamas members in Lebanon has also been a recurring strategy. All this adds to the potential for war to spread from Gaza into Lebanon.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.