According to a senior Israeli intelligence official, the Lebanon-based militant group Hezbollah is hiding a massive arsenal of advanced weapons, including an estimated 100,000 short-range rockets as well as "several thousand" missiles capable of reaching central Israel and Tel Aviv.
The intelligence official, who spoke to reporters on condition of anonymity under military guidelines, said that Hezbollah has hidden the weapons in roughly 200 Shi'ite villages in southern Lebanon. The placement of the weapons, he warned, put civilians at risk should a war erupt.
The Times of Israel reports that the stockpiled weapons, many of which were transferred through Syria, include "100,000 short-range rockets capable of striking northern Israel, several thousand missiles that can reach Tel Aviv and central Israel and hundreds more that can strike the entire country."
The intelligence official showed reporters satellite images (which the military did not allow to be published) featuring sites where Israeli intelligence believes the weapons are located, including suspected command posts, missile launchers, underground tunnels and weapons caches. Some of the estimated 200 villages, the official said, have been turned into "military strongholds," containing scores of Hezbollah assets:
One photo showed the village of Muhaybib, with a population of around 1,000 people and 90 buildings, of which more than a third had been marked as Hezbollah assets. In the larger village of Shaqra, with some 4,000 people, Israeli intelligence identified Hezbollah targets in around 400 out of some 1,200 buildings.
The official explained that should war break out, buildings containing Hezbollah assets would be targeted; however, Israel would give civilians prior warning and time to evacuate should that occur.
Read the Times of Israel's full report here.