Israel would not have wanted yesterday’s prisoner exchange to be seen as a victory for Hiz’bullah, but in Lebanon there was no doubt. Samir Kantar, a convicted triple murderer, was in Hiz’bullah uniform only hours after being freed by Israel in return for two of their own. Kantar and four others were welcomed home personally by the rarely-seen head of Hiz’bullah, Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah.
“The factors that pressured the Israeli enemy to accept the deal were not merely humanitarian. There was their inability to save the two soldiers and their fear of our resistance,” he said.
As far as Nasrallah was concerned, the deal was a clear message to the world that Hiz’bullah could not be defeated.
Back on home soil too, the remains of 199 Arab militants said to have been killed while trying to infiltrate Israel.