Hoping to drive a wedge between Hizbollah and Lebanon's Sunni and Christian communities, the officer urged the Lebanese people not to be drawn into a war for which they, rather than Iran, would bear the brunt of Israel's anger.Hezbullah is part of the government of Lebanon. If Hezbullah attacks Israel, Lebanon will be destroyed. There will be no holding back this time like there was six years ago.
"The situation in Lebanon after this war will be horrible," the officer, a senior commander on Israel's northern border with Syria and Lebanon, said.
"They will have to think about whether they want it or not. I hope that Iran will not push them into a war that Iran will not pay the price for but that Lebanon will."
Israel drew international condemnation in 2006 when it last launched military action against Hizbollah in an offensive that is believed to have killed more than 1,000 people, many of them civilians.
But the officer, speaking on the condition of anonymity, suggested that Israel had taken too cautious an approach in the conflict, leading to the deaths of dozens of Israeli soldiers.
No such mistake would be made in the next conflict, he said, especially as Hizbollah had built military sites in the centre of many villages and towns in southern Lebanon. Pointing to a satellite map of the town of Khiam, he identified a series of buildings that the movement had allegedly taken over for military purposes.
"In these villages where Hizbollah has infrastructure I will guess that civilians will not have houses to come back to after the war," he said.
"The Lebanese government has to take this into consideration. Many of the villages in southern Lebanon will be destroyed. Unfortunate, but we will have no other solution. The day after (we attack) the village will be something that it will take 10 years to rebuild."
By the way, the picture at the top is the Dahiyeh, Hezbullah's neighborhood in South Beirut, after it was bombed by Israel during the Second Lebanon War.