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memri
September 20, 2018 No.
7680

Hizbullah Reveals Drones And Missile At 'Museum For Jihadi Tourism' In South Lebanon

In August 2018, for the first time, Hizbullah revealed drones and the short-range 75-kilometer Khaibar missile that it used during the July 2006 war with Israel. These are on display as part of a new exhibition held at the organization's "Museum for Jihadi Tourism" (also known as the "Mleeta Tourist Landmark") in Mleeta, South Lebanon, to mark 12 years since the war. Reports about these new exhibits and others were published in various Hizbullah media.

This document presents details from these reports.

Hizbullah's "Aerial Force" Displayed At The Mleeta Museum

Referring to the new exhibits presented at the museum, the head of Hizbullah's media department, 'Ali Daher, told the organization's news website Al-'Ahed that, until recently, the museum had displayed only old-generation drones, but now drones of several generations, which can carry out a variety of missions, are on display. The report stated that Hizbullah has a fleet of advanced drones stamped with the emblem of the organization's "aerial force," which first came into operational use during the July 2006 war, and includes Mirsad-1 and Mirsad-2 aircraft.[1] It added that the drones were used in the "operation for liberating Al-Juroud" in 2017,[2] and "took part in exposing the dens of the takfiris" (i.e., Salafi-jihadi organizations).[3]


The emblem of Hizbullah's "aerial force" (image: almanar.com.lb, August 3, 2018)


Hizbullah drones at the Mleeta museum (image: alahednews.com, August 1, 2018)


Hizbullah drones at the Mleeta museum (image: Hizbullah's Twitter page, @C_Military3, August 1, 2018)

Hizbullah's 75-km Khaibar Missile Displayed At The Mleeta Museum

On August 19, 2018, the Al-Ahed website reported that a Khaibar missile, of the type used by Hizbullah in the 2006 war to target Israel, was also on display at the museum. The exhibit was unveiled by Hizbullah Executive Council chairman Hashem Safi Al-Din, who said: "Our weapons are meant for defense and for repelling [the enemy]. It is not our custom to expose weapons we have not yet used." The Khaibar is a 333-mm missile with a range of 44-75 km, seven meters long and weighting 916 kg. A video produced by Hizbullah's Central Military Media, posted on the Al-Ahed website, stated that the resistance was displaying the Khaibar missile, "one of the surprises of the 2006 war", and that the exhibit was dedicated to the martyrs.[4]


The Khaibar missiles displayed at the museum (image: alahednews.com.lb, August 19, 2018)


The Khaibar missile (image: alahednews.com.lb, August 19, 2018)

The Mleeta Museum For Jihadi Tourism

The Mleeta Museum for Jihadi Tourism, glorifying the actions of Hizbullah against Israel, opened in 2010 and  was built on the site of a Hizbullah military base, partly underground and partly above ground, at the top of a hill.[5]


The museum grounds (image: addiyar.com, March 25, 2017)

The museum includes a virtual firing range, with laser guns modeled after Hizbullah’s weapons. According to a museum worker, this helps the youth visiting the museum visualize Hizbullah’s past actions against Israel and enables them to experience the use of weapons and feel like they are participating in the “resistance” against Israel.[6]

The museum exhibits many weapons and other military gear that served Hizbullah in its wars against Israel, such as SAM-7 anti-aircraft missiles. The wreckage of an Israeli Yasur helicopter, downed in the 2006 war, is also on display.[7]


Wreckage of downed Israeli Yasur helicopter (image: alahednews.com.lb, August 1, 2018)


Other exhibits at the museum (image: alahednews.com.lb, August 1, 2018)

According to reports, 1,700,000 people have visited the museum since its opening in 2010. These include military personnel, the media (reporters from Al-Ahed and from the Swedish Radio Islam), Iranian representatives (MPs, university deans, and Iran’s official TV), and tourists,[8] as shown by the photos below,  from the museum's Facebook page:


Lebanese Army personnel visiting the museum (image: facebook.com/mleetatl, June 29, 2017)


"The Journalist Ahmad Rami [of] Swedish Radio Islam" visiting the museum ( image: facebook.com/mleetatl, August 3, 2018)


Representatives of  Iranian TV (image: facebook.com/mleetatl, May 25, 2018)


Iranian MPs (image: facebook.com/mleetatl, August 9, 2018)


Iranian university deans (image: facebook.com/mleetatl, July 12, 2018)


American tourists (image: facebook.com/mleetatl, June 24, 2018)

 

[1] The Mirsad-1, which has been in use by Hizbullah since 2002, is a 85-kg aircraft with a range of 50 km and maximal altitude of 3,300 meter, which can remain airborne for 90 minutes.  The Mirsad-2 has been in use by the organization since 2003 (Youtube.com/watch?v=IlPMPuYgT-c).

[2] The reference is to Hizbullah's battles with ISIS on the Lebanese border in August-September 2017.

[3] Alahednews.com, August 1, 2018.

[4] Alahednews.com.lb, August 19, 2018.

[5] Moqawama.org, May 31, 2010.

[6] Al-akhbar.com, August 14, 2017.

[7] Almanar.com.lb, August 3, 2018.

[8] Al-akhbar.com.lb, August 14, 2018.