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Category Archives: Lebanon
“This was not a coup! Think of it as a protest and message to Bush and Olmert. If we wanted a coup we could surround the Serail. Mr. Siniora would perhaps hand us the keys. We don’t want them. Let’s all prepare for elections and let the people decide who sits in Parliament and makes up Cabinet.” Continue reading
Part Three: What’s in it for Hezbollah? – Will U. S. Policy in Lebanon and the Middle East Ever Change? – FRANKLIN LAMB
“Absolutely not! Without a credible deterrent force, there is no real Lebanese sovereignty. Israel came very close to getting nearly all it wanted with the 1983 May 17th agreement. Had Hezbollah not prevented this, Lebanon today would be colonized with near confederation status with Israel. The Bush administration’s democracy and ‘save the Christians’ crusade back-fired when each election resulted in Islamist victories while his war in Iraq and support for Israel is making refugees of a high percentage of Christians. It is now Hezbollah and its allies who are protecting the Christians and want free elections in the Middle East, not the Bush administration”.
– American student interviewed as part of a survey of 27 Lebanese institutions of higher education on whether Hezbollah should immediately disarm.
Part Two: The Israeli Project Has Failed in Lebanon – Why the Bush Administration Wants to Negotiate Now with Hezbollah – FRANKLIN LAMB
“These fools do not learn from their past mistakes. When they withdrew from Lebanon, they continued to occupy the Shebaa Farms and kept our brothers in custody. Had they released them when they left Lebanon, there would not now be a ‘prisoner issue’ between Lebanon and the enemy. They opened the door for us.”
Hassan Nasrallah, January 2004, during a welcome home ceremony for Lebanese and Arab detainees as a result of a Hezbollah-Israel swap.
Part One: Historical Context and Current Posturing – Bush to Nasrallah: an Offer Hezbollah Cannot Refuse? By FRANKLIN LAMB
Note: This is the first installment in a series of three.
“The Bush administration parking a flotilla from its US 6th fleet off the coast of Lebanon was made necessary, it claims, to demonstrate Washington’s ‘commitment to stability in the region’. This provocation, aimed at Hezbollah and also Syria, is the equivalent of a Sicilian fish wrapped in newspaper with a white rose—left on a doorstep: “This is business. It is not personal. Here is an offer you cannot refuse“.
Hezbollah sources concede that they were taken by surprise and some were shocked, by the intense incendiary bombardment of the last few days by pro government operatives. As Hezbollah studies ‘the situation’ and how to respond this beautiful spring Beirut morning, there is a real danger things may rapidly spiral out of control.
Yesterday started off, peacefully enough, with a strike called by the General Federation of Labor Unions (GFLU) in Lebanon represented by the General Labor Union. The strike was supported by Hezbollah, to protest the Governments failure to adopt what the union considers a living wage of $ 600. Currently the minimum wage in Lebanon is approximately $ 200 per month. The strike continues for the second day but tensions are escalating and Beirut’s airport remains closed by anti-government demonstrators. Beirut’s main roads are intermittently blocked, the streets virtually empty and the town largely locked down as sporadic violence and stone throwing continue.
Eight people have been killed and 15 people wounded in Lebanon, according to security sources, as the country’s political crisis threatens to spiral out of control.
Fighting in Beirut intensified on Thursday, the second day of anti-government protests, after a speech by Hassan Nasrallah, the Hezbollah leader, in which he called a government crackdown on the Shia group “tantamount to a declaration of war”. Continue reading
The Lebanese Premier says the Winograd Report on the 2006 war against Lebanon confirms that Israel plans to attack his country again.
In an official statement released by Prime Minister Fuad Siniora on Thursday, he said that the report calls for Israel to prepare for the next war, which shows that it ‘had not learned from its defeat.’ Continue reading