Jonathan Spyer

Two Grad rockets were fired this week at the south Beirut suburb of Shiyah. This district borders the Dahiyeh – the stronghold in the city which houses the main offices of Hizballah. The decision to strike so close to Hizballah’s nerve center is a dramatic escalation by the Syrian rebels of their simmering conflict with the Lebanese Shia militia.

The official leadership of the Free Syrian Army repudiated earlier claims of responsibility for the rocket fire issued in its name. But the official leadership of the FSA do not in fact command the mainly Sunni Islamist men who do the actual fighting in Syria for the rebellion. So their statements are of only secondary importance.

What is happening is that Hizballah’s long standing but increasingly overt engagement in the war in Syria is now being paid back in kind by the rebels.

Some of Hizballah’s best fighters have for the…

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