Pointing to the arrests of two men in the United States in June for alleged activities on Hezbollah's behalf, Rasmussen said that U.S. intelligence agencies assess that the group is seeking an ability to strike inside "the homeland". Hezbollah is also heavily involved in Lebanese politics. One of the wanted men was instrumental in the 1983 attack on the Marines barrack in Beirut that killed 241 US military personnel.
Nicholas Rasmussen, the head of the National CounterTerrorism Center, blamed the group for a litany of attacks around the world, and said it maintains a presence in "nearly every corner of the globe". This is sort of true, since Hezbollah is one of Lebanon's largest political parties, and a major player in the nation's civilian government, which does control the army.
Shukr is a general for Hezbollah in southern Lebanon, where it shares a border with Israel, a U.S. ally that the militant force considers to be its arch-enemy. "It is our assessment that Hezbollah is determined to give itself a potential homeland option as a critical component of its terrorism playbook".
The United States on Tuesday offered multimillion-dollar rewards for two officials of the Iran-backed Lebanese group Hezbollah as the Trump administration prepared to unveil a strategy to counter Tehran's growing regional influence. Make no mistake. Hezbollah has no political wing.
The US labels the entire Hezbollah a terrorist organization. "It is a single organization, a terrorist organization, and it is rotten to its core", he argued. "But it will not change Hezbollah's course - not in our positions against Israel, against the Takfiris, against the US scheme in the region or internally within Lebanon".
"We are watching very closely for additional signs of that activity", he added.
"It is part of the continuous efforts to demonize Hezbollah".
Israel's military believes Hezbollah has between 100,000 and 120,000 short- and medium-range missiles and rockets, as well as several hundred long-range missiles, with the medium-range missiles capable of reaching Tel Aviv.
While welcoming US action against Daesh, Israel sees Iran, Hizbollah and their allies as the greater threat and worries about their entrenchment in Syria as they help President Bashar Assad beat back a more than six-year-old rebellion.