Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah on Wednesday warned that "all possibilities" were open against Israel as he gave a fiery speech on the Jewish state's offensive in Gaza.
"We have to act as though all possibilities are real and open with Israel and we must always be ready for any eventuality," said Nasrallah, whose Shiite forces fought a devastating war with Israel in 2006.
He warned that that the 2006 war, which killed some 1,200 mostly civilian Lebanese, would be "but a walk in the park" compared to what awaits Israel if it launches a new offensive on Lebanon.
He also rebuked Arab leaders for mediating a truce with Israel instead of siding with embattled Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.
Nasrallah's remarks stepped-up the elusive leader's rhetoric - he has so far only verbally supported Hamas allies fighting Israeli troops in Gaza - that could stoke tension on Israel's northern border.
His comment marked the first time he has spoken so openly on the possibility of a renewed conflict with Israel since the war in Gaza began on Dec. 27.
Israel has warned Hezbollah against igniting a second front, saying it would retaliate massively.
Nasrallah, addressing tens of thousands of supporters via video link at his stronghold in Beirut's suburbs on the occasion of the Shiite holy day Ashura, warned that Lebanese are ready "to sacrifice our souls, our brothers and sisters, our children, our loved ones for what we believe in." .
"I say to (Israeli Prime Minister Ehud) Olmert, the loser, the vanquished in Lebanon that 'you cannot overcome Hamas or Hezbollah'," Nasrallah said.
He also reiterated past criticism of Egypt for failing to open its border with Gaza and blasted the U.N. Security Council for not acting to denounce the Israeli offensive that has left nearly 700 Palestinians dead.
"Does the government in Egypt need more than 650 victims and 2,500 wounded to open the Rafah crossing once and for all to help the people of Gaza toward victory?" Nasrallah said. "I am simply asking for the opening of a crossing and not another front."
He also commended Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez for expelling Israel's ambassador to Caracas saying that all countries, including Arab states, must follow his example.
"Arab governments must learn from this great Latin American leader to show their solidarity with the Palestinian people and must cut relations with Israel," he said.
Jordan and Egypt are the only two countries in the Middle East to have diplomatic relations with Israel.