CIA director George Tenet furthermore asserted at the congressional hearing on Wednesday that Hezbollah was a "terrorist" organization with global reach that would "no doubt respond with operations against American and Israeli targets all over the world." A claim Hezbollah has steadfastly denied. Hezbollah affirmed at the International Conference of the Arab and Islamic Media, in September 2003, that Palestine remained the epicenter of the anti-Zionist and anti-American insurgency discounting the effectiveness of confronting Israel and the US in Iraq, India, Azerbaijan, Eritrea, or the Sudan and elsewhere.
"Instead of being bled and occupied and instead of dividing our efforts across all of these arenas, why don't we centralize our battle and our effort within the Arab and Islamic world beside our Palestinian people?" Nasrallah said. The policy of remaining strong in theater is a longstanding Hezbollah policy.
Aziz Rantisi of the Islamic Resistance Movement [Hamas] also affirmed his organizations commitment to keeping the conflict within the borders of historic Palestine. Rantisi told the Palestinian Information Center that "It is not in our policy to target Americans or American interests," he affirmed, describing Washington's travel advisory to American nationals as "deceptive" and meant to cover-up for its support of the Zionist heinous crime. A position echoed by Khaled Mishaal, Hamas Movement political bureau chief in Damascus.
While both resistance movements have promised grave retaliation for the assassination of Sheik Yassin, statements by Washington officials to the effect that Hamas or Hezbollah will strike American interests abroad or even on American soil are widely viewed as provocative rhetoric intended to justify a so-called preemptive strike against the resistance movements and must be opposed.