Michael Totten on Hezbollah's Image Problem

April 2006: Michael J. Totten offers some friendly advice to his Hezbollah buddy.
Let me give you some personal advice, Hussein. Maybe we can be on the same page for a change. Get out of the “suburbs” and go hang out in Beirut once in a while. Don’t tell people who you work for. Just strike up conversations in restaurants, coffeeshops, and bars. Lebanese are friendly, so that’s easy. Ask Sunni, Christians, and Druze what they think of Hezbollah. Listen to what they have to say. Remember that you have to live with these people. I suppose you could turn your guns on them. We all know you can beat the Lebanese military in a one-on-one fight. Who knows, though? There's always a chance the Israeli Defense Forces might intervene against you on Lebanon’s behalf. How much would that suck?

About this much.
Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah revealed that he did not know of this morning's attack prior to its occurrence. According to a mid-level Hezbollah party member, the Hezbollah leadership was not expecting the attack to come right now, not expecting such a harsh Israeli response, and is currently scrambling to come to a plan.

In January, the party leadership decided that they would capture Israeli soldiers in exchange for Lebanese prisoners. They would attack at the earliest possible time, and today happened to be that day. The Hezbollah leadership was entirely caught off guard. ...