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The Iranian-backed terrorist group Hezbollah has tripled its rocket and missile arsenal in Lebanon since 2001 and could transfer these assets to fight the U.S. military in Iraq, says Geostrategy-Direct, the global intelligence news service.

A new report says Hezbollah has acquired an advanced anti-aircraft missile and long-range rockets capable of striking deep inside Israel.

“Hezbollah’s rocket arsenal was tripled in size and augmented by hundreds of long-range rockets capable of striking targets deep in the civilian and industrial heartland of Israel,” the report by the Middle East Intelligence Bulletin said.

“Construction crews worked around the clock converting caves into underground bunkers to house the weapons.”

The report, authored by analyst Gary Gambill, said Hezbollah might have acquired the SA-18 surface-to-air missile.

The SA-18, regarded as the most advanced of the Soviet-origin shoulder-fired missiles, has a range of 5.2 kilometers and is guided by optical and infrared guidance systems.

Gambill said Hezbollah could use its military capabilities in the insurgency war against the U.S. in Iraq.

The report said Hezbollah Secretary-general Hassan Nasrallah could help incite a Shiite uprising against U.S. forces in Iraq.

“Scores of Hezbollah militants have been sent to Iraq over the last 10 months and the group has reportedly opened offices in Basra and Safwan,” the report said.

“According to American intelligence reports, Hezbollah operatives have focused mainly on establishing lines of communication with Iraqi Shiite leaders and distributing anti-American propaganda, but the groundwork is clearly being laid for incitement of violence in the future.”

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